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30 July 2008 @ 12:19 am
Author: David Weber
Title: In Fury Born
From the back of the book:
Vengeance is a dish served Red Hot!
From the time she graduated from high school, Alicia DeVries knew what she wanted to do with her life, and she did it well. On planets like Gyangste, Chengchou, Fuller, and Louvain, she's put her life on the line in defense of her Empire and Emperor again and again. She's given her blood, and the lives of men and women closer to her than brothers and sisters.
But her dead have been betrayed in the name of political expediency. The justice they deserve has been denied, and a brokenhearted Alicia DeVries has resigned her commission and retired to the colony world of Mathison with her family to begin a new life.
Yet Alicia is still a warrior, and the pirates who attacked Mathison, tortured and murdered her family, and left her for dead, are about to discover just how big a mistake they made. Alicia DeVries has two allies of her own. Allies no one knows about. Allies as implacable as she is: a self-aware computer, and a creature from the mists of Old Earth's most ancient legends.
They may not survive...but neither will their enemies.
Contains a revised and expanded version of Path of the Fury, and its novel-length prequel!

Another great science fiction novel - or two - by David Weber.
26 July 2008 @ 05:02 pm
Title: Confessions of an Air Hostess
Author: Marisa Mackle
Blurb: Air hostess Annie's life takes a serious nosedive after her boyfriend dumps her (by text) and takes off with a thousand pounds of her money.
But before she has time to do what she really wants (lock herself away with her tears and a jumbo tub of ice-cream), she has a planeful of passengers to cajole into good behaviour. So it's on with the fake tan (and the fake smile) and off to work as usual. Which is just as well, really. Because you never know, the departure of Mr Wrong could mean the arrival of Mr Right....Couldn't it?
My thoughts: I picked up this book because I was in the mood for something light, after reading quite a heavy and sad book. It was a light, sometimes funny, read, with Annie ultimately having to choose between two men...the player and the rich but married one.... The ending was a little obvious, but I still enjoyed reading the book, especially the part that took her to Greece!
Rating: 7/10 (for entertainment value)
60 Book Challenge: Book 29

Title: 13 Little Blue Envelopes
Author: Maureen Johnson
Blurb: Inside little blue envelope 1 are $1000 and instructions to buy a plane ticket
In envelope 2 are directions to a specific London flat
The note in envelope 3 tells Ginny: Find a starving artist
Because of envelope 4, Ginny and a playwright/thief/bloke-about-town called Keith go to Scotland together, with somewhat disastrous - though utterly romantic - results. But will she ever see him again?
Everything about Ginny will change this summer, and it's all because of the 13 little blue envelopes.
My thoughts: I found this to be a fun and light read, about 17 year old Ginny who receives a package of 13 letters from her Aunt, who is dead. She has to open one letter at a time, and follow the instructions inside, which lead her to England and then through Europe from Scotland, Rome, Paris, Amsterdam, Copenhagen to Greece meeting different characters along the way and fulfilling the conditions in her Aunt's letters. I was so envious of Annie, because this is something that I'd love to have done for me, plus I'd love to go back to Europe and see a lot of the places that she did. Even though this is directed at younger readers, I still think this is a book that older readers can enjoy too. I know I did!
Rating: 7/10
60 Book Challenge: Book 30

Next read: Hmm....probably one of my Meg Cabot books....'Queen of Babble gets hitched' probably.
Current Mood: cheerfulcheerful
20 July 2008 @ 07:20 pm
Author: Sally Gunning
Title: A Widow's War
Genre: historical fiction
From Booklist
In a colonial whaling village, Lyddie Berry is very happy with her husband, Edward, the home they've built together over the years, and the children they've raised. When Edward is lost in a whaling disaster, Lyddie discovers her new status as a widow is not equal to her former status as a wife. All of the property Lyddie and Edward have acquired is now the responsibility of Lyddie's tight-fisted son-in-law. Although destitute and grieving, Lyddie finds righteous anger and strength, and challenges her son-in-law when he violates the terms of her husband's will. This defiance leads her to question other values held by the community about a woman's place, and even as she loses her reputation and home, she gains a deeper sense of self. Historical fiction isn't usually known for quick pacing, but readers will be swiftly turning the pages, eagerly cheering for the strong-willed widow. The crisp prose is flavored with the stinging salty atmosphere of a New England community witnessing one individual's war for independence. A good choice for book groups. Kaite Mediatore
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

I've enjoyed Sally Gunning's mystery series and when she came out with a new book, I had to read it. I finished it the same day I started it, enjoying every minute of it.
20 July 2008 @ 11:01 am
Hey, has anyone been reading anything great lately? As you can probably tell I've started up a challenge for myself. It's usually the 50bookchallenge but I did the 50 book challenge last year and ended up getting a lot more than 50 books read, so thought I'd up the books a bit each year to make it more challenging for myself. Is anyone else doing the challenge, or have done it in the past?

Year of Wonders : A Novel of the Plague
Author: Geraldine Brooks
Blurb: When an infected bolt of cloth carries plague from London to an isolated mountain village, a housemaid named Anna Frith emerges as an unlikely heroine and healer. Through Anna's eyes, we follow the story of the plague year, 1666, when her fellow villagers are convinced by a visionary young minister to quarantine themselves within the village to arrest the spread of the disease.
But as death reaches into every household, faith frays. The villagers turn from prayers to witch-hunting, and Anna must confront the disintegration of her community and the lure of a dangerous love. Yet as she struggles to survive, a year of plague becomes instead, an annus mirabilis, a 'year of wonders'.
Inspired by the true story of a village in the rugged mountain spine of England, Year of Wonders is written with stunning emotional intelligence. It is a spellbinding and unforgettable read that examines the collision of faith, science and superstition at the cusp of the modern era.
My thoughts: I loved this book, despite the fact that it was deeply sad. It made me cry and get so frustrated so many times. But it was so well written and it hooked me in so that I just couldn't put it down! I found it amazingly selfless that (most of) the villagers didn't run away and most likely cause the spread of the plague...but it was interesting and sad to see how their faith waned, and their actions as the year went on. I wasn't too sure about the ending, it was almost like the author felt she had to force out a happy ending......
Rating: 9/10
Book 28/60
15 July 2008 @ 10:20 pm
Title: The Last Battle
Author: CS Lewis
Blurb: Good King Tirian faces the fiercest challenge ever to any Narnian King's rule. There is a false Aslan roaming the land, commanding all Narnians to work for the cruel Calormenes.
Narnia's only hope is that Eustace and Jill, old friends to Narnia, will be able to find the true Aslan and restore peace to the land.
The last battle is the greatest of all battles, and the final ending the most magnificent of all endings in this, the last book of CS Lewis's timeless series, The Chronicles of Narnia
My thoughts: There's not really much I can say about this book because really, the blurb says it all. This is the last in the Chronicles of Narnia series, and I'm kind of sad to be ending the books because I enjoyed them so much, even though they were written for children. I feel both happy and sad (if that's possible....I guess you'll understand if you've read the series, or when you read them) about the ending.... I still have questions about one character in particular, who happens to be my favourite and I'm sad that they weren't in the book.......
Rating: 7/10
15 July 2008 @ 09:41 pm
Title: Katherine, the Virgin Widow
Author: Jean Plaidy
Blurb: In the royal marriage market, the Infanta of Spain was a true prize.In the eyes of the world, Katharine of Aragon was a precious object to be disposed of for the glory of Spain. Her parents, Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand, send her to England to become the bride of Arthur, Prince of Wales.
But soon her frail husband was dead, and a fateful question loomed: Was the marriage consummated, as Katharine's priest avowed, or was the young widow still a virgin? On that delicate point hinged Katharine's--and England's--future. Meanwhile, waiting in the wings was her willful, handsome brother-in-law, bold Prince Henry, who alone had the power to restore Katharine's lost position.
My thoughts: I found it really interesting to read about Katherine of Aragon's earlier years. I'm so used to reading about Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn's relationship and how Katherine factored into that, so this novel was a nice change. It covers the years from Katherine's sailing to England to meet her new husband, the sickly Arthur to when she becomes Queen of England. There was also a lot about her sister Juana which I liked, since I don't really know much about her.
The book was not the greatest, in regards to how it was written, but it was still really enjoyable and interesting.
Rating: 7/10

10 July 2008 @ 12:25 am
For those fans of Meg Cabot out there, you'll be happy to hear that she's apparently sold the rights to her series Queen of Babble to the film company Sharp Independent Films. IMDB has it listed for release in 2009, and apparently Kristin Bell (star of Veronica Mars and Forgetting Sarah Marshall) has agreed to play Lizzie Nichols. Should be interesting!
Title: Undomestic Goddess
Author: Sophie Kinsella
Blurb: Samantha is a high powered lawyer in London. She works all hours, has no home life, and cares only about getting a partnership. She thrives on the pressure and adrenalin. Until one day.....she makes a mistake. A mistake so huge it'll wreck her career.
She goes into meltdown, walks right out of the office, gets on the first train she sees, and finds herself in the middle of nowhere. Asking for directions at a big, beautiful house, she is mistaken for the interviewee housekeeper and finds herself being offered the job. They have no idea they've hired a Cambridge-educated lawyer with an IQ of 158 - and Samantha has no idea how to work the oven.
Disaster ensues. It's chaos as Samantha battles with the washing machine....the ironing board..and attempts to cook a cordon-bleu dinner....But maybe she's not as undomestic as she thought. Maybe, with some help, she can fake it? Will her employees ever discover their housekeeper is actually a top-flight lawyer? Will Samantha's old life ever catch up with her? And if it does....will she want it back?
My thoughts: This is the second Sophie Kinsella book I've read and like Remember me? I really enjoyed The Undomestic Goddess. It was a very funny (at times I found myself laughing out loud) and entertaining read and I found myself glued to the pages. The romantic side to the novel didn't hurt either, especially one particular scene which I won't ruin for you ;) I definitely recommend The Undomestic Goddess for anyone wanting a light read, that no matter what anyone says, is not fluff!
Rating: 9/10
06 July 2008 @ 07:49 pm
Book: The Beach House
Author: Jane Green
Known in Nantucket as the eccentric woman who lives in the rambling house atop the bluff, Nan doesn't care what people think. She's sixty-five years old, her husband died twenty years ago, her beauty has faded, and her family has flown. If her neighbors are away, why shouldn't she skinny-dip in their swimming pools and help herself to their flowers? But when she discovers the money she thought would last forever is dwindling and she could lose her beloved house Nan knows she has to make drastic changes.
So Nan takes out an ad: Rooms for rent for the summer in a beautiful old Nantucket home with water views and direct access to the beach.
Slowly, people start moving into the house, filling with with noise, with laughter, and with tears. First arrives handsome Daniel, quiet and contemplative and struggling to break free of his secrets. Then there is Daff, a recent divorcee who is looking to relax and reconnect with that part of herself that is neither wife nor mother, while her rebellious teenage daughter spends the summer with her father. Nan's son comes home for the summer, and as the house comes alive again, Nan finds her family expanding until an unexpected visitor turns all their lives upside down.
My thoughts: I really enjoyed reading The Beach House. I wasn't sure what to expect, as the characters were a little different from Green's usual characters, but I found I really liked them, especially Nan. The book was filled of great descriptions of summers, the characters memories and Nantucket. It makes me want to go there, although I'm sure I wouldn't be able to afford it! lol There's also an interesting twist at the end which I won't ruin for you. But I do recommend this book.
My Rating: 8/10
01 June 2008 @ 12:29 pm
Has anyone ever read Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert?

I finished reading it recently and I must say I really enjoyed it. It was very different to what I expected, but in a good way. For those who haven't read it or heard of it, it's about a 30 year old woman who has a sort of mid-life crisis. This story is about her journey to find herself. She decides to travel to Italy, India and Indonesia (for reasons you'll find out) each for three months

I loved the way the author described different things, like how good the pizza in Naples was, or how she had difficulty quieting her mind during her first meditation sessions. I loved traveling with her to Italy (especially Italy!) and India and Indonesia while she tried to 'find herself'.

My rating: ****
(Sorry I had trouble writing this so it's not the most coherent of reviews. I just hope it makes sense lol)

I've also just started reading Alison Weir's new novel 'The Lady Elizabeth'. I loved her last novel 'Innocent Traitor' so I'm hoping this one will be as good!