Friday, December 31, 2010

My Top Ten for 2010 and Reading resolutions for 2011

Well Here are my top ten books for 2010 in no particular order
The Lightning Thief (Movie Tie-in Edition) (Percy Jackson and the Olympians)
The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan

The Sea of Monsters (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Book 2)
The Sea of Monster by Rick Riordan

Under the Dome: A Novel
Under the Dome by Stephen King 

Missing Max: A Novel
Missing Max by Karen Young

In a Heartbeat: Sharing the Power of Cheerful Giving
In a Heartbeat by Leigh Anne and Sean Tuohy

Unwilling Warrior (Seasons of Redemption, Book 1)
Unwilling Warrior by Andrea Boeshaar

Happily Ever Laughter: Discovering the Lighter Side of Marriage (Focus on the Family)
Happily Ever Laughter Ken Davis Editor

For Time and Eternity (Sister Wife)
For Time and Eternity by Allison Pittman

So Long, Insecurity: You've Been a Bad Friend to Us
So Long Insecurity by Beth Moore

Carrot Cake Murder (Hannah Swenson Mysteries With Recipes)Cream Puff Murder (Hannah Swensen Mysteries)Plum Pudding Murder (Hannah Swenson, Bk 13)Gingerbread Cookie Murder
Carrot Cake Murder, Cream Puff Murder, Plum Pudding Murder and Gingerbread Cookie Murder

Okay so I cheated with the last one.

My Resolutions for the new year:

1.Not read as many books for review.  That way I can give the books I do review more attention.
2.Reread some of the books I read this year,  I feel like I read alot of books to fast so to do reviews so I want to go back and reread them so I can really enjoy them.
3.Read 100 books.  I made it to 90 this year.
4.Comment more.  I read alot of posts but don't comment.  I want to maybe read less posts and comment more
5. Be more consistent with my Audiobook of the Week Feature and keep up with my Cozy of the month Feature.
6. Continue participating in Meme's but not feel like I have to participate every week.
7. Visit at least five new to me blogs in every meme I participate  in

Hope everyone has a great New Year    

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Life with Lord Byron by Peggy Nelson

Life with Lord Byron: Laughter, Romance, and Lessons Learned from Golf's Greatest Gentleman
Life With Lord Byron by Peggy Nelson

I am not much of a golf enthusiast, mini gold being about all I have ever really enjoyed about the game.  After reading this book I will not be picking up golf clubs either, but that is not what this book is all about. 

Peggy Nelson meet Byron Nelson after he did all the "big" stuff that his career was known for.  They meet by chance when she reluctanly went to a workshop where he was featured.  They meet again after his wife passed away and a friendship became romance.  Even though there was a big difference in their ages, they lived and learned from each other for over 20 years.  

They had a great marriage that was based on love and respect but most of all on their love for the Lord.  

I would highly recommend this book to anyone who would like to read about a marriage that worked and is an insperartion to others.  

I received this book from Kathy Carlton Willis Communications is exchange for my honest opinion.        

Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas Letter by Debbie Macomber-Audio

Christmas Letters Christmas Letter by Debbie Macomber - audio

From Shelfari:
Celebrate Christmas on Blossom Street with a brand-new romantic comedy from New York Times bestselling author Debbie Macomber! Katherine O'Connor often spends her days at a cozy cafe on Blossom Street in Seattle -- where she writes Christmas letters for other people. She's good at making their everyday lives sound more interesting. More humorous. More dramatic. But for Dr. Wynn Jeffries, who also frequents the cafe, Christmas means lies and deception. In fact, the renowned child psychologist recommends that parents "Bury Santa Under the Sleigh." Katherine, however, feels that his parenting philosophy is one big mistake -- at least, based on her four-year-old twin nieces, who are being raised according to his "Free Child" methods. She argues with Wynn about his theories, while he argues that her letters are nothing but lies. They disagree about practically everything -- and yet, somehow, they don't really want to stop arguing. As the days -- and nights -- move closer to Christmas, Katherine and Wynn both discover that love means accepting your differences. And Christmas is about the things you share

My Take:

First and Formost  I really didn't like the narrator.  There was just something about her voice that didn't sit well with me.  I also thought she could have shown more emotion in parts but most of the book was read monotone.

I have only read one other book by Debbie Macomber (the first one in the series about the angels) and i wasn't that impressed with it so I never really sought out her books.  When I joined the Christmas Reading Challenge I decided to give this book a try.

I still will probably not actively seek out any of Macomber books but I thought that this book was exactly what I expected.  Light fluffly romance.   No real character develpment but there were several funny moments.  I did feel as if the ending was a bit rushed and I forsee quite a bit of trouble in the future for these people if they don't slow done and spend some time really getting to know each other but that's not what romances are about so for what it is it was a fair book.

I gave it 3 stars on  GoodReads and Shelfari. 

Christmas Reading Challenge   

My Present!!

My Christmas Present this year was my very own room!!!

My Hubby and youngest daughter made this room for me.  They ran out of time so it needs a touch up here and there but I love it!! 
My youngst daughter will be in Canada from now till Thursday night so I plan on moving more of my books into my Library and arranging things. 

Friday, December 24, 2010

Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Christmas Cookie Killer: A Fresh-Baked Mystery
The Christmas Cookie Killer by Livia J. Washburn

From Amazon:
Christmas comes to Weatherford, Texas, in this delicious new entry in the national bestselling series.
Yuletide is here—and retired teacher cum amateur sleuth Phyllis Newsom looks forward to finishing up this unlucky year. But she won’t be hanging up her apron just yet—because this year’s Christmas bake-off is going to be cutthroat.

Phyllis would like to think she’s entering the Christmas cookie contest for the fun of it—but that’s not exactly true. She can’t imagine anyone beating her snowflake-shaped lime sugar cookies. Then, during her annual Christmas cookie exchange, Phyllis heads over to the elderly Mrs. Simmons’s home and finds her dead, in a pile of lime sugar cookies. But with a number of names on Santa’s naughty list, this case may be a hard cookie to crumble.

My Take:
This was the first book that I have read by Livia Washburn.  Although this book can be read alone, it would be helpful to read the other books in this series first just because they are mentioned several times throughout the book. 

Although the title and the description by Amazon suggests that the killing had something to do with the annual Christmas cookie contest this is not the case. 

I had the identity of the killer figured out pretty early in the book.  I really had a hard time really caring about these characters and unlike Joanne Fluke's Hannah Swenson's mysteries the recipes in this book just hit me as so-so.  I am not sure if I will read another book in this series.  I do have a free kindle copy of one of the books in her other series and will give it a shot. 

This book wasn't horrible but I have so many wonderful series that I already read that I am not sure if I will continue one that is just so-so to me.     

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

An Amish Christmas by Cynthia Keller - Audio

An Amish Christmas: A Novel
An Amish Christmas by Cynthia Keller

From Amazon
Meg Hobart has everything: a happy marriage to a handsome, successful husband, a beautiful home in Charlotte, North Carolina, and three wonderful children. But it all comes crashing down around her the day she learns that her husband, James, has been living a lie—and has brought the family to financial ruin. Penniless and homeless, the Hobarts pack up what little they still possess and leave behind their golden life for good. But it’s not the material things Meg finds herself mourning. Instead, she misses the certainty that she should remain married to James, who has betrayed her trust so thoughtlessly. Worse, she is suddenly very aware of just how spoiled her children have become. Meg wonders what her family has really sacrificed in their pursuit of the American dream.

My Take:

This was not your typical Amish Story as it focaused more on the family who stumbles intot he Amish community more than the Amish themselves.

I Felt sorry for Meg as she had to deal with what her husband had done along with his anger and the children's anger.  I thought the James got away with what he did way to easily and didn't really have to take much responsibility for his actions.  I thought the two older chidlren were just spoiled brats and would go back to being spoiled brats after the New Year. I liked the relationship between the Amish Grandfather and the yougest boy. 

The story was tied up with a bow at the end and unfortunately life isn't like that.  But overall I thought the book was a good story and it was just what I needed at this time of year. 

I listened to  this from my own audio library and it was for the Christmas Reading challenges I am doing.   

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Just a few more Challenges

I have decided to maybe cut back a bit from reviewing books (although I plan on do quite a bit hopefully next year) and focus alittle more on books I already have. 

Sign Up

•To sign up you MUST make a post on your blog about participating in the challenge - you then use the URL of the post to sign up to the challenge by adding it to Mr Linky below. DO NOT just add your blog URL - this will be deleted. Also please be aware that unless you show you are joining the challenge with a participation post your ARC will not be sent.

•You must add the button to your sidebar - make sure that it links back to this post so others can join the challenge if they wish. Easiest way to do this is to copy and paste the code displayed above
I really want to read more mysteries this year so this challenge. 
Other Details

•Timeline: 01 Jan 2011 - 31 Dec 2011

•Rules: To read TWELVE (12) mystery & suspense novels in 2011 (12 is the minimum but you can read more if you wish!)

•You don't have to select your books ahead of time, you can just add them as you go. Also if you do list them upfront you can change them, nothing is set in stone! The books you choose can crossover into other challenges you have on the go.

•You can join anytime between now and the later part of next year.

•At the beginning of Jan 2011, you will find a link to specific month to add your reviews. There will be a monthly prize too courtesy of the lovely Simon & Schuster - you must be signed up to the challenge and add the link to your review to be entered into the monthly prize draw.

Now, there are many different sub-genres of mystery and suspense - you can choose from the numerous sub-genres, from cosy mysteries such as Agatha Christie to the more hard-boiled kind like V I Warshawski by Sara Paretsky, or romantic suspense written by the likes of Linda Howard, forensic crime such as those written by Kathy Reichs and even paranormal/supernatural suspense such as Kelley Armstrong. I'm sure this challenge will have something for everyone! :)

hand in hand with this challenge will be this challenge
So, here are the rules...

1. Choose the level you wish to participate:

Level 1 - Snoop - Read 1-6 books

Level 2 - Investigator - Reading 7-12 books

Level 3 - Super Sleuth - Read 13 or more books

2. The challenge runs from January 1, 2011 and ends December 31, 2011.

3. You don't have to choose your books in advance. If you do, you can change your list at any time during the year. Books can overlap with other challenges.

4. Books can be in any format - paper, audio, all counts!

5. You don't have to post a review, but I'm sure others would love to know about the books you are reading and may even want to add it to their reading lists.

6. Take the button above, put it on your blog and post about the challenge. Then add your name to Mr. Linky below...Please use the link of challenge post, not the link to your home page.
Have fun!

NOTE: If you don't have a blog and want to participate, that's fine. You don't have to have a blog, just post in the comments section as you finish books
I think I will be for level 1

Adventures in Odyssey Daring Deeds - Audio

Adventures in Odyssey: Daring Deeds, Sinister Schemes (Gold Audio Series #5) Adventures in Odyssey Daring Deeds and Sinister Schemes

From Amazon:
Evil has a name . . . and it goes by Dr. Regis Blackgaard. Though it looks like the bad guys are winning, right overcomes might in the end. Listeners of all ages will learn about making smart choices and having integrity, even in the face of danger.

The Gold series includes bonus tracks, fun facts, and behind-the-scenes details!

Volume 5 contains the following stories (and themes):

The Imagination Station, 1 & 2 (Jesus' crucifixion and resurrection)

An Encounter with Mrs. Hooper (Compassion for the elderly)

A Bite of Applesauce (Disobedience)

Connie Goes to Camp, 1 & 2 (Disobedience)

Eugene's Dilemma (Doing what's right; responsibility)

The Nemesis,1 & 2 (Trusting God in times of trouble)

Our Best Vacation Ever (Family togetherness)

The Battle, 1 & 2 (God's protection)

My Take:
I always like listening to Adventures in Odyssey and even though my kids are older (my youngest is 15)  I still listen on my own.  These are great stories that  have you looking forward to the nest episode.  Great family oriented stories.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Gingerbread Cookie Murder by Joanne Fluke, Laure Levine and Leslie Meier

Gingerbread Cookie Murder

Gingerbread Cookie Murder by Joanne Fluke, Laura Levine and Leslie Meier

I had read
Candy Cane Murder
Candy Cane Murder and really enjoyed it so I thought I would give Gingerbread Cookie Murder a go.  I knew I wouldn't be disappointed because I already read two of the three ladies series and I think I will be adding the third to my list of series that I read.  

Joanne Fluke starts the book out with Gingerbread Cookie Murder.  Hannah once again stumbles upon a murder when she goes to confront her neighbor about his playing his Christmas music way to loud.  along with her family and friends and some delious recipes along the way she finds the murderer.    

Next up is Laura Levine with The Dangers of Gingerbread Cookies.  Jaine Austen is in Florida visiting her parents at their retirement communtiy.  In between her father trying to put up a rotating Christmas tree, and the community's Christmas Tree Rehearsal the local gigalo windups dead after falling to his death because the wire that held him up was cut.  So Jaine goes into detective mode to find  the killer.  

Last but certainly not lest is Leslie Meier with Gingerbread Cookies and Gunshots.  Between her children not coming home for Christmas and a little local boy being kidnapped right outside his home this is not turning into the Christmas that Lucy Stone had hoped for.  She can't help but try to track down the kidnapper because the little boy just tuggs at her heart.  

All Three stories are great stories for this time of the year.  The mystries are good and kept me guessing to the very end.