Saturday, December 20, 2008

First BIG Snow of the Season!!

Normally only use this blog to talk about books.

I thought it would be fun to share some of the pictures I took today.

We had our first major snowstorm here in the Northeast. We have another storm moving in for tomorrow that will give us anther 3-6 inches.
It took me an hour to shovel out my car.

I can't imagine living where it doesn't snow, but this is too much too soon.

What are your feelings on snow. Love it? Hate it? Never seen it?

Fall Into Reading 2008 Challenge ~ Wrap Up

Today the Fall into Reading 2008 challenge officially ends. So before I go shovel out my car so I can finish my Christmas shopping. I thought I would post my Wrap Up for the is challenge.

My goal for this challenge was 18 books. My list change through out the fall, but I met my goal.

Did you finish reading all the books on your fall reading list? If not, why not? I did finish
Did you stick to your original goals or did you change your list as you went along? No my list changed through out the challenge.
What was your favorite book that you read this fall? Least favorite? Why? My Favorite would have to be First Lady by Susan Elizabeth Phillips. Least favorite would be Dancing with Fire by Susan Kearney.
Did you discover a new author or genre this fall? Did you love them? Not love them? Michelle Beattie I read her debut book 'What a Pirate Desires'. I love it and can't wait until her next book comes out in September.
What was your favorite thing about the Fall Into Reading challenge? I love that you were able to change your list.
Would you like to participate in another challenge here this spring? Absolutely!!

My final list is posted below:

1. Confession of a Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella - 3 stars

2. Never Seduce a Scoundrel by Sabrina Jeffries - 4.5

3. Kiss and Tell by Suzanne Brockmann - 4 stars

4. Paradise Wild by Johanna Lindsey - 3 stars

5. Fang for Memories by Kathy Love - 3.75

6. Houston, We Have a Problem by Erin McCarthy - 4.5 stars

7. Banner O'Brien by Linda Lael Miller - 4.5 stars

8. Lion's Lady by Julie Garwood - 4.5 stars

9. Seduce a Me at Sunrise by Lisa Kleypas - 5 stars

10. A Wallflower Christmas by Lisa Kleypas - 4 stars

11. Power Play by Deirdre Martin - 3.75 stars

12. Hot Property by Carly Phillips - 4 stars

13. Rough and Ready by Sandra Hill - 4.5 stars

14. What a Pirate Desires by Michelle Beattie - 5 stars

15. Flat Out Sexy by Erin McCarthy - 5 stars

16. At His Command by Brenda Coulter - 3.75 stars

17. First Lady by Susan Elizabeth Phillips - 5 stars

18. Who Needs Mistletoe? by Kate Hoffmann - 4 stars

19. Dancing with Fire by Susan Kearney - 3 stars

Monday, December 15, 2008

The 2009 Pub Challenge

I found another fun challenge. The 2009 Pub Challenge is being hosted by 1morechapter again this year.

Here are the 2009 rules:

1. Read a minimum of 9 books first published in 2009. You don’t have to buy these. Library books, unabridged audios, or ARCs are all acceptable. To qualify as being first published in 2009, it must be the first time that the book is published in your own country. For example, if a book was published in Australia, England, or Canada in 2008, and then published in the USA in 2009, it counts (if you live in the USA). Newly published trade paperbacks and mass market paperbacks do not count if there has been a hardcover/trade published before 2009. Any questions on what qualifies? Just leave a comment here, and I’ll respond with the answer.

2. No children’s/YA titles allowed, since we’re at the ‘pub.’

3. At least 5 titles must be fiction

4. Crossovers with other challenges are allowed.

5. You can add your titles as you go, and they may be changed at any time.

6. Sign up HERE using Mr. Linky.

7. Have fun reading your 2009 books!

Tentative list:

1. Dark of Night by Suzanne Brockmann - Jan. '09

2. Smooth Talking Stranger by Lisa Kleypas - Feb '09

3. Romancing the Pirate by Michelle Beattie - Sep '09

4. With a Twist by Deirdre Martin - May '09

5. Tucker's Claim by Sarah McCarty - April '09





Sunday, December 14, 2008

Read Around the Genres Challenge ~ Wrap Up

I have completed Cindy W's read Around the Genres Challenge. I was really worried that I wasn't going to be able to complete this challenge in time, but I did!! Yay!!
Below is my completed list:
1. Pirate or Viking - What a Pirate Desires by Michelle Beattie ~ rating 5!!
2. Vampire - Fangs but no Fangs by Kathy Love ~ rating 3.75!!
3. Contemporary - Hot Property by Carly Phillps ~ rating 4!!
4. Chick Lit - Confessions of a Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella ~ rating 3!!
5. Medieval - Gentle Warrior by Julie Garwood ~ rating 4!!
6. Time Travel - Rough and Ready by Sandra Hill ~ rating 4.5!!
7. Romantic Suspense - Dancing with Fire by Susan Kearney ~ rating 3!!
8. Inspirational - At His Command by Brenda Coulter ~ rating 3.75!!
9. Historical - Seduce Me at Sunrise by Lisa Kleypas ~ rating 5!!
10.Paranormal - Enchanting the Lady by Kathryne Kennedy ~ rating 4.5!!

Started Challenge: 9/1/08
Completed Challenge: 12/13/08
# of Pages Read: 3199

Favorite Titles: Seduce me at Sunrise by Lisa Kleypas and What a Pirate Desires by Michelle Beattie

Least Favorite: Confessions of a Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella and Dancing with Fire by Susan Kearney

This was a really fun challenge and I want to thank Cindy for hosting it!!

Dancing with Fire by Susan Kearney

Rating 3!!

Book Description:
Accident or Murder?
Dance instructor Kaylin Danner has sacrificed her opportunity on Broadway to help her father raise her younger sisters in Florida. When her father's laboratory blows sky high and his priceless formula for a revolutionary new fuel disappears, Kaylin is left with nothing but her father's business partner Sawyer Scott and a cache of deadly trouble.
Life or Death?
When the Danner home is vandalized and her sisters threatened, Sawyer and Kaylin team up to unmask the killer terrorizing her family. Sawyer's bent on pursuing both Kaylin and the missing formula, but Kaylin fights the attraction, believing Sawyer's a dreamer like her father-and in her experience dreamers end up dead.

My Review: This book started off so slow that it took me 8 days to read it. I had a hard time with the some of the actions of the Heroine. I thought that the mystery wasn't that good. One of the things I did like was the hero Sawyer. I love smart heroes who are also hot!!

Confession of a Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella

Rating 3!!

Book Description: Becky has a fabulous flat in London's trendiest neighborhood, a troupe of glamorous socialite friends, and a closet brimming with the season's must-haves. The only trouble is that she can't actually afford it—not any of it. Her job writing at Successful Savings not only bores her to tears, it doesn't pay much at all. And lately Becky's been chased by dismal letters from the bank—letters with large red sums she can't bear to read—and they're getting ever harder to ignore. She tries cutting back. But none of her efforts succeeds. Becky's only consolation is to buy herself something ... just a little something....Finally a story arises that Becky actually cares about, and her front-page article catalyzes a chain of events that will transform her life—and the lives of those around her—forever. Sophie Kinsella has brilliantly tapped into our collective consumer conscience to deliver a novel of our times—and a heroine who grows stronger every time she weakens. Becky's hilarious schemes to pay back her debts are as endearing as they are desperate. Her "confessions" are the perfect pick-me-up when life is hanging in the (bank) balance

My Review: I had to pick a chick lit book for the Read Around the Genre Challenge I was participating in. I decided to listen to Confession of a Shopaholic, if I tried to read it I know I wouldn't have finished it. I really don't like stories told in the first person. With that said I like this, but I didn't love it. It was funny, at some points of the story Becky could be very annoying. This didn't make me a fan of chick lit. I do think, I will eventually check out the rest of the series (probably on audio).

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

What's In a Name? Challenge 2009

Annie is hosting What's in a Name? Challenge.
*This is a challenge that anyone can join, no matter what types of books they like to read. You should be able to find books from any genre that will work.
*Dates: January 1, 2009 through December 31, 2009.
*The Challenge: Choose one book from each of the following categories.
1. A book with a "profession" in its title.
To Catch a Thief by Christina Skye
2. A book with a "time of day" in its title.
Dark of Night by Suzanne Brockmann
3. A book with a "relative" in its title.
The Pirate's Bride by Shannon Drake
4. A book with a "body part" in its title.
Hot Wheels and High Heels by Jane Graves
5. A book with a "building" in its title.
Castles by Julie Garwood
6. A book with a "medical condition" in its title.
Temperature's Rising by Karen Kelley
*You may overlap books with other challenges, but please don't use the same book for more than one category.
*Again, there will be some small prizes scattered throughout. No set schedule, so just be sure to check in once a while. There will also be a prize awarded at the conclusion to one participant who completes the challenge.
*You don't need to decide exactly which books you will be reading ahead of time, though you're certainly welcome to. Either way, I'd love to see your lists of possibilities, and I'll bet everyone else would love to read them as well. To join in, simply leave a link here. Or, if you don't have a blog, simply leave your name (and feel free to share your list in the comments if you'd like).

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Romance Reading Challenge 2009

Bookworm is hosting a Romance Reading Challenge 2009

Read on for the rules:
1. Now, "Romance" isn't limited to steamy Harlequin novels. There is a huge selection of books in this category such as contemporary romance, historical romance, romantic suspense and paranormal romance to name a few. As long as the story has romantic love between the two main characters your selection will fit this challenge. The novels do not need to have a happy ending either, there can also be unrequited love.
2. Choose at least 5 novels read them between Jan 1st though Dec 31st 2009. You can change your choices at any time. Crossovers between other challenges are fine.
3. Read them at your own pace in 2009 then come here and post the link to your review(s).
1. The Gift by Julie Garwood
2. Some Like it Wicked by Theresa Medeiros
3. Corbin's Fancy by Linda Lael Miller
4. Trial by Fire by Jo Davis

Read Your Name Challenge

This challenge sounded like fun. It's being hosted by Victoria (aka Ink Heart). The challenge is to read your name in book title first letters, ultimately spelling out your name. That means:
1. Using your first name, or blogger name, or your pets name, or even your favorite literary character's name; whichever you like, choose books with first title letters that spell out your name. Such as my name: Victoria. the first book's title would start with the letter V, then the next book title begins with I, etc. Make sense? (I hope so!) :p
2. Bloggers and non-bloggers alike are free to join. If you do not have a blog and would like to post your reviews/titles that spelled your name somewhere, you may do so here at the group blog. Just send me an e-mail (phantombibliophile [at] gmail [dot] com), or leave a comment letting me know you'd like to use this blog.
3. If you have your own blog, come back here every month and leave a comment containing the link to your challenge page containing the books you've read or each review you've written for books that count for this challenge. (Crossovers with other challenges are okay.) I will make a new post for this on the first of every month.
4. The challenge runs from Jan. 1st 2009, to Dec. 31st 2009. You may join at any time.
5. Last but not least, be sure to sign up using Mister Linky Below! & Leave a comment with what name you're going to use, and the name itself of course! Oh, and don't forget to link back to the challenge from your blog (if you have one of course) to show you're participating!

I am going to post my tentative list here:
Romeo, Romeo by Robin Kaye
Ready by Lucy Monroe
Able by Lucy Monroe
And then he Kissed Me by Patti Berg
Anyone but You by Jennifer Cruise
Night's Kiss by Amanda Ashley
Nightkeeper by Jessica Andersen
Down and Dirty by Sandra Hill
Divorced, Desperate and Dating by Christie Craig
I Got You Babe by Jane Graves
In the Bed with the Devil by Lorriane Heath

Flat Out Sexy by Erin McCarthy

Rating 5 stars!!

Book Description: Independent single mother Tamara Briggs wanted to find a new, sexy, no-strings-attached man—just not one as young as NASCAR driver Elec Monroe. But he sure does get her heart racing. And after she’s tricked into a blind date with him, Tamara gives in to her passion. Things screech to a halt, though, when he asks to meet her children. Whatever happened to wham-bam-thank-youma’am? Suddenly Tamara has to decide how much risk she’s willing to take to experience the power of true love.

My Review: I don't think there is much I can say about this book that hasn't already been said. This has been reviewed on several book blogs over the past few months. Erin McCarthy is one of my favorite authors. I discovered her Vampire Series first I have been slowly collecting her backlist. I have not read a book of hers that I haven't loved.

I have to say I agree everyone this is a fabulous book!!

What a Pirate Desires by Michelle Beattie

Rating 5!!!
Book Description:
When her family was murdered by the brigand named Dervish, all that Samantha Fine cherished was swept away in the churning waters of the Caribbean. Driven by revenge, she masquerades as Sam Steele, the most cunning pirate of the seas, striking terror in the hearts of every merchant who dares to cross her path. If only they knew the legendary buccaneer’s extraordinary secret…

One man has discovered that a fiery female spirit wrestles beneath Sam’s fearsome exterior: the pirate, Luke Bradley. He once sailed with the vile Dervish, and now has a score of his own to settle. But as he joins Sam on her journey across the unpredictable Caribbean Sea, Luke is drawn to her loyal heart and courageous strength. Now, making Dervish pay for his sins is second to the quest to win Sam’s heart…


My Review:
I truly enjoyed this first novel by Michelle Beattie and can not wait for her next book which won't be out until Sept 09!! This book had everything. Action, adventure and a flawed hero and heroine.
I know a book is good when I can remember the characters names a few days after I have read the book. I loved both Luke and Sam.
Luke is one of those heroes you fall in love with. Sam was great for the most part, there was a small part at the end where you just want to shake her.
Highly Recommend

Check out an excerpt from Michelle Beattie's next book.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Contest Alert!!!

My friend Cindy is having a contest on her blog Cindy Reads Romance today for a chance to win a copy of...

Do Not Disturb Until Christmas by Charlene Sands

All millionaire businessman Cody Landon wanted for Christmas was sweet payback. Superstar singer Sarah Rose had betrayed him for the limelight—and now she’d taste his revenge. He’d seduce her, then leave her forever. But Cody didn’t count on being hungry for more.
Or on the resulting pregnancy. To save her image and career, Sarah Rose would have to marry him. Giving Cody what he’d wanted all along: all access—all the time. Once their baby was born, he’d divorce her. Or would his Christmas bride get what she wanted?

Contest ends Monday 5PM EST
Good Luck!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

November Wrap Up

November was a decent month. I read 6 books and listen to 1 on my IPod.
Fall Reading Challenge @ - completed 5 also completed the challenge which ended 11.30.08
Fall Into Reading - completed 7
Reading Around the Genre - completed 2
What an Animal Challenege - completed 1

Books Read:
1. Kiss and Tell by Suzanne Brockmann (Sunrise Key Trilogy book 1) - 4 stars
2. Never Seduce a Scoundrel by Sabrina Jeffries(School for Heiress book 1) -4.5 stars
3. Paradise Wild by Johanna Lindsey - 3 stars
4. The Lion's Lady by Julie Garwood - 4.5 stars
5. Rough and Ready by Sandra Hill - 4.5 stars
6. At His Command by Brenda Coulter - 3.75 stars
Audio Books:
1. First Lady by Susan Elizabeth Phillips - 5+++ stars
Happy Reading!!

I'm counting the days until Dark of Night is released!!

I cannot wait for this book to be release on January 27th.

Troubleshooters is my favorite series. I have been reading the series since Unsung Hero was released in 2000.

Jacket Blurb:
Badly shaken after the loss of one of their own, the men and women of Troubleshooters Inc. go up against their most deadly opponents yet —- the clandestine organization called The Agency. Blackmail, extortion, murder: The Agency's black-ops sector will apparently stop at nothing to achieve their objective. But this time they've gone too far and hit too close to home.
Led by former Navy SEAL Lawrence Decker, a team of investigators —- from FBI agent Jules Cassidy and former CIA operative Dave Malkoff, to Troubleshooters Sophia Ghaffari, Tess Bailey, and even receptionist Tracy Shapiro —- band together to uncover the truth, and bring the killers to justice.
But the stakes are raised even higher when Decker barely escapes an attempt on his life. It soon becomes clear that the hunters have become the hunted —- and the Troubleshooters are no longer just solving a crime -— they're fighting for survival.

Suzanne Brockmann just posted an excerpt. Check it out!!