Right now I am...
~NOT Accepting Reviews (See my Review Policy, as I WILL accept them in the near future!)
~Booking Author Interviews and Guest Posts (See Being a Guest Author)
~Hosting Giveaways and Tours (Also see Being a Guest Author)
~Looking for Guest Reviewers (See Being a Guest Reviewer)
More about The_Book_Queen...
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- Utah, United States
- Books are my life--plain and simple! :) My genre of choice is romance, of almost any kind. I love reading, I love sharing my thoughts on the books with others, and I'm always up for recommendations and book conversations! Please, feel free to find me on any of the various websites I frequent, or drop me an email! If you are interested in me reviewing your book (Or you just want to ask me a question), please email me at: The_Book_Queen[at]yahoo[dot]com.
Click on 'Enter Today' which will take you to Cynthia's Blog where all the juicy details on how to enter are located. Good luck!
Below are five book I've received today: 2 were from Hachette, 2 were books I bought myself (just thought I'd post them here as well) and the last one, though I did receive from Hachette, I will not be keeping because it's a duplicate of one they sent out 3 weeks ago. I've contacted Renee (the lady in charge of this area of the company) and I'm prepared to ship it back. IF she says "No, you can keep it" then I may be having a giveaway soon.... *hint, hint*. Keep checking back for updates about it.
Okay, on to what I received!
Title: Highland Outlaw *Bought myself
Author: Monica McCarty
Series: Cambell Trilogy, Book 2
Handsome and dangerous, Patrick MacGregor is a wanted man, possessing the tough, tenacious spirit of his outlawed clan. He will stop at nothing to save his people from destruction, even if it means marrying Elizabeth Campbell, the daughter of his worst enemy. Yet the flaxen-haired beauty disarms him from the start. Her sweet, unspoiled softness touches the cold depths of his ravaged soul–and makes him want much more than revenge.
Inside the shy and dutiful Lizzie is a passionate woman longing to emerge, a woman ready for love. So when the piercing emerald eyes and searing kiss of a stranger spark in her a desperate hunger, she surrenders to Patrick’s glorious seduction–unaware that his daring deception has just found its one and only chance for redemption: a love more powerful than hate.
Title: Dark Victory *Bought myself
Author: Brenda Joyce
Series: The Masters of Time, Book 4
A dark, ruthless Highlander, the Black Macleod has refused his destiny. His life is revenge for the massacre of his family. His enemies' insults—that he is a man of stone—only amuse him. But fate is impatient, and when a woman from another time dares to summon him, he cannot resist her powers—or her.…
A schoolteacher by day, Tabitha Rose uses her magic to protect others by night. When the vision of a dark Highlander, bloody and burned, appears to Tabby, she knows she has been called to help him, no matter how frightening he might be. But what Tabby doesn't expect is to be taken against her will to his dark, violent time. And when evil begins to stalk her, she realizes she must fight for far more than his destiny—she must fight for her love.…
Ellis Greene remembers very little about the night of her cousin Laura's murder, but she does recall the face of the murderer. Ellis was the key witness to the crime, and her testimony helped put Hollis Alexander in jail for a long time. With Hollis behind bars, Ellis should feel safe, but the memory of that awful night still haunts her. Determined to free herself from the fear of being attacked like her cousin, Ellis has become an expert in self defense. However, when Ellis hears that Hollis has been paroled, she feels like a helpless teenager again--and she isn't the only one who notices that he's free.
The point of a review is (usually) to enlighten fellow readers about how wonderful a book is. It's also meant to bring free advertising, sorta speak, to the publisher/author of that book. That being said, it is really hard for me when I have to sit down and write a review about a book that, well, didn't quiet make it to my 'favorite' pile. Unfortunately, this is one of those very reviews.
Seeing Red was one of the four books I received from a publisher a few weeks ago. Although romantic suspense novels are not my usual reading of choice, I figured I'd give it a try-- Hey, I'm willing to try anything once, plus the cover was interesting, and the story sounded promising. When I started it, I had hoped that it would be quick and fast-paced, like a good mystery/suspense novel. However, the story started out slow, a bit too much for my taste, and I don't think that it ever really reached the pace that I was hoping for.
Like I said before, I hate writing a negative review, but at the same time, I have to be honest, since it's not a summary, it's my opinions that make up the review. Keep in mind, when I do write a negative review, I try to make it known that while I may not have enjoyed that particular book, that doesn't necessarily mean that EVERYONE else has to put it on their 'Never Read' list. It could be that I just wasn't in the mood for that specific genre of book, and I was a bit harsh on my rating.
In theory, it should be easier to pinpoint what went wrong in a book that would cause the reviewer to give it a bad rating, right? Wrong. Or, at least that's what it's like for me. I find it easier to point out all the positive, good things about a book. Sometimes it's more difficult to explain why a book failed to hold my attention. Again, this is one of those times.
Seeing Red wasn't a horrible book (believe me, I've read much, much worse!), but it also didn't meet my expectations either. It was an 'okay' book, nothing really stood out about it that screamed 'Amazing!', but it wasn't so boring or terrible that I couldn't finish it or threatened to torture it just so I would never have to look at it again. I simply felt like there was no real passion between the characters. I kept thinking, "It'll get better, I just have to give it time", but even after I finished the book, there wasn't one character that I wanted to revisit. I don't know about you, but after I've finished a really good book, the story, the characters, stay with me for days, months, years even, and I want to know more. This time, I couldn't even begin to tell you what went on between half the characters or what happened for most of the book. When I closed the book, it's almost like everything I'd just spent three days reading...left. Again, it's not that the writing or story was horrible, but it just doesn't stick with you after you are done. But maybe it's just me...
Maybe if I've known that, though it's called a 'romantic suspense', Seeing Red is really more of a straight forward mystery kind of book, I could have enjoyed the story line a bit more, without the conflicting expectations. The romance was so sparse, I could have put it on a 3 by 5 card, and what was there was very G-Rated. Not that there's anything wrong with that, I've read some tame romances that were just as wonderful as some of the more erotic ones, but it was more than just the lack of sex scenes in this one that disappointed me. I'm still not sure how Nathan and Ellis got together-- I didn't really see the connection, nor did I believe in it. And aren't both of those suppose to be main points in a romance? Once again, I can't say that this was the complete fault of the author-- I've heard more than a few rave reviews about this book. It might very well just be me. Sometimes, even the most well written books in history have still failed to win over the love of all the readers of the world...
On the positive side, the story did pick up considerably towards the last half of the book. Not quiet enough to wow me, but more than enough to make me realize that the book wasn't a total waste of time. It had it's fair share of action and excitment at times, and while following the perverted plans of Hollis, I felt a shiver fear and disgust (not a bad thing, at least when you are reading a mystery). I wasn't bored out of my mind, but I wasn't captivated either. Again, maybe if the author had played up one genre more than the other, or worked a bit more on tying the two together seemlessly, my review could be different? If it had been a total mystery, with no romance thrown in, would my opinion change? Or if she'd worked on the main characters developments and the way their love blossomed in the story instead of focusing so much of the time on the crimes? Maybe.
3.5/5 STARS! I can't repeat it enough times: Seeing Red wasn't a complete flunk, and if you thought about reading this book, or you've read her previous books and enjoyed them, then give this one a try. Maybe check it out from the library first, but even if you buy it, it's not a waste of money. It's simply, in my view, a mediocre romance novel. Maybe her other books are much better, and maybe I'd enjoy them, I don't know. One day, I might try another book of Crandall's, and my opinion could change. But until then, I've still got to put this one aside. It's going on my shelves (as some would call it, a 'keeper'), because it's not bad enough to warrant being thrown out. But if/when I wish to trade some of my books at the used bookstore, I hate to say it, but Seeing Red may just be on the top of my (small) pile to go.
Until Next Time,
What day is that, you may be asking? Well, I'll enlighten you, shall I? (If you can't tell, I am just a wee bit excited, if that clues you in any!)
From the first day I started this blog, I dreamed of it one day becoming as grand as a lot of my favorite blogs that I visit: a place where readers come to visit and chat, to read my reviews and rambles and just have fun. But not only that, I dreamed of a day when I too would be able to post and say 'Hey, look what I won/received to read!'.
And I am proud to say that that day has finally arrived!
Yes, my friends, today I received a big brown package on my doorstep. And what should be inside of that wonderful box? Why, four newly released romance novels for me to review! Now, if I had bought this books, well, it wouldn't be quiet so big of a deal for me. But no, these books came to me...FREE OF CHARGE.
I won't go into details, but to briefly explain, I contact a publisher and asked if they would be interested (and kind enough!) to send a few books my way to review. I wasn't expecting a reply back, little loan one that said anything besides 'Sorry, but no!', so you can imagine my surprise when the very next day, someone answered back and said that they had a few books that were either coming out or that had just came out and wanted to know if they could send them my way. Needless to say, I wrote back quickly with my answer: YES!
So here is the first of (I hope) many posts showing what books I received to review this week. I realize that this may be a fluke, at least until I get a bigger following, etc, on here where more publishers would be willing to send free books my way, but still, it's a step up, even if it's only a small one!
What I Received:
When I received my copy of Desire Unchained in the mail, I literally stopped, right on my doorstep, and did a dance. Yes, a dance! I know, that sounds so odd and childish, but ever since I read the first novel, Desire Unbound, last year, I've been hungry for more! And believe me when I say that Desire Unchained delivered on all accounts!
In the first book, we were dropped straight into Ione's world, modern Earth, except for we're not alone. Shapeshifters, Witches, Demons, Vampires, and all sorts of other fantastical characters live in our world. For the most part, humans know about them, but they still don't flaunt themselves. Instead, they stick to the "Underworld's" of the area, tunnels and such below the city or hidden from the humans. The hospital that Shade and his two other brothers founded exist in one such area, hidden from the prying eyes of humans.
While the plot line, the intriguing characters, and the complex story development are a great part of the book, it's not the only part that made my fall in love with the series. It's also the very intense, sometimes graphic, but always satisfying *no pun intended, of course!*, sex. Along with the equally tender romance. Don't get the wrong impression-- it's not ALL about the sex in their relationship, though that part is definitely a big part of it. Personally, I enjoy the more erotic touches like this in my romances, but I know that some do not. If you fall into the later category, I'm sure that you could still enjoy this book, even if you have to flip through a few scenes.
The romance is fantastic, but it's not the only element that sticks out. There's a plot to it, a point besides just watching the H/Hr have hot sex 24/7. The suspense and action makes the reading interesting, not just sexy. I'm anxious for the next book, not only to find out Wraith's fate and story, but also to see what more could happen in this compelling paranormal world that Ione has created. I promise you-- just when you think that you have the story 100% figured out, nothing could possibly surprise you, a new twist in the story pops out, keeping you on the edge of your seat until the very end. And even then, it will only let you go, but it won't leave you entirely. You'll still find yourself thinking about the story, the characters and the world, anxious to return to it, but upset that you have to wait until the next book to do so.
4.5/5 stars! I can't stop raving about this amazing book! Heck, not just this book, but Ione's entire series! They're sexy, passionate, mysterious, action packed, humorous... I could go on and on! In short, they have everything you could possible ask for in a romance! I can't wait for her future books-- Ione is definitely an automatic author in my book!
Because I've done so poorly at keeping up with a weekly 'what I've read' post, I've been thinking about doing a monthly one instead. If I do, I'll probably just post the covers of the books, my rating, and the summary for them from B&N.com, simply because writing little reviews about 2o or so books at time is a bit daunting, and hard to do when a person is busy like I am. However, if I do decide to do a monthly one, I will still do the occasional review, like this one. Mostly for new books, or ones I really loved, and any that I happen to receive through contests or from publishers. Sound good to everyone? I hope so, because I really feel bad about not sticking to my weekly one like I said I would....
Again -- so many contest going on at once! WOW. Lol. Well, here's another one that may interest a few of you. It's for a teen fantasy novel, Eternal, along with various other prizes (see more info below). I personally love Smith's book *That may sound weird, but I can't say books: Eternal is her second one* and I am anxious to get my hands on Eternal, along with the third one in the series, which she is currently reading.
So head on over to the blog/site and enter. I hope the links all work, if they don't, I'm terribly sorry!!
Eternal Grand Prize Giveaway Package: in celebration of the Feb. 10 release of Eternal (Candlewick), author Cynthia Leitich Smith is giving away several prize packages, some including signed copies of the novel, tie-in T-shirts, finger puppets, stickers, guardian-angel tokens, and more! See details here.
Deadline midnight CST Feb. 9!
All Cynsational readers are eligible to win!
Cynsational Notes: Learn more about Eternal, check out the Eternal Readers' Guide (spoiler warning!). For those on MySpace, see my page, Tantalize Fans Unite! (a discussion group), and reader-originated character pages for Tantalize characters Quincie, Kieren, Ruby, and Brad, and the latest reader-originated page Tastefully Tantalizing
Here is yet another one I've found and that to let others know about. Again, it's not my contest, but I'm posting the information from the original blog, plus the link to the blog, below. Enjoy, and good luck! :D
~CONTEST~Since Pamela Clare happens to be such a sweet lady, she has given me the opportunity to offer one lucky reader autographed copies of both, Untamed & Surrender!!
Just leave a comment on this post and you're automatically entered to win!!
Because Ms. Clare was so kind to offer these books, I would like to offer one as well :) Anyone who posts about this contest on their blog will automatically be entered to win the novel of their choice from Ms. Clare's backlist. All you have to do is let me know the when's and where's of the post!
Contest ends February 10th.
The winners will be chosen at random from the list of commenters and announced on Wednesday February 11th.
Want to enter, or read the review about one of her newest books (not my review, Happily Forever After's)? Check out the link below: http://booklover125.blogspot.com/ Oh, and sorry that the pictures didn't show up for the books being offered, but they are on the blog linked above.
Here's the basic information: Visit the blog (link below picture), save the pic to your computer then post it on your blog and link back to the original contest blog. Like always, leave a comment with both the website for your blog and your choices from the six books that you would like to receive if you won. Simple enough, right?
For more details and information, and your change to enter, check out the link below!
Good luck, girls!
My Rating Scale
- 5 Stars= Fantastic. Perfect rating, and a must read for anyone!
- 4.5 Stars= Great--- highly recommended!
- 4 Stars= Good, a very enjoyable read.
- 3.5 Stars= Nice, quick read.
- 3 Stars= Okay, about average.
- 2.5 Stars= Eh....Not the worst, but below average.
- 2 Stars= Borderline fail...Something was missing!
- 1.5 Stars=I didn't like it.
- 1 Star= Major flaws.... Or not my cup of tea, depends on how you care to look at it...
- 0.5 Star= DNF or DNE (did not enjoy--- at all).
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