Monday, March 31, 2014


I won't be around this week because it's spring break for my boys, and for me I guess since I work in the schools now...whoo hoo spring break! Anyways, I'm not bringing the computer along. Craziness, I know! And I'm not much of a cell phone girl. I have one, but there aren't any numbers programmed or games or whatever else people have on their phones. So I will be completely offline. Can you tell this is dramatic for me?

Have a great week everyone! Oh, anyone interested in my monthly theme songs, April is all about silliness. Silly videos, lyrics, title, story behind why you love the song so much, whatever! When I return, I'll have a review for Crash Into You and my first post for LGBT Month.
This was last spring break at the airport. I'm hoping for a few less fits. No skiing, but definitely tubing. Oh, and I told my dad I was going to slaughter him at cribbage.

When life's kicking your butt, how about a theme song? [4] Silliness!

Ally McBeal knew what she was doing with her baby dancing theme song, Hooked on a Feeling. Let's give it a shot. I think it's working because my kids are scolding me more than usual for all my singing and dancing. We all need to sing and dance a little more. 
So spring is here along with torrential rains and kids who refuse to wear their coats anymore. I think silliness is in order. I'm choosing Folding Chair by Regina Spektor. I love singing along to this song. Check out a few lines..."I've got a perfect body, but sometimes I forget. I've got a perfect body 'cause my eyelashes catch my sweat. Yes they do. They do-oo-ooo...." I love that!
Do you have any songs that pull you into silliness? I'd love to check them out, sing along, maybe do a weak thumbs at my hips dance in the kitchen while I cook. I hope you all have a fantastic April! Here are my mom and sister's silly songs.
Mushaboom by Feist is one of my favorites, but I just saw the video for the first time. Totally oddball silly! So of course it's my sister's pick.
I accidentally listened to this song with John in the car. Maybe I forgot he was there, that was until I heard a little voice sing, "I don't care. I love it!" So of course this is my mom's pick!
(These are not my kids, but they have the exact same reaction to this song. They could be fighting and driving me crazy and then I put on Watermelon Meow Meow by The Imagination Movers and magic!)

You can find April's Youtube playlist link HERE!

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Sidekick Showcase [47] Chasing the Pot of Gold at the End of the Rainbow

Sidekick Showcase, previously known as Sidekick Saturday, is a weekly bookish meme, hosted here by Jaclyn at JC's Book Haven. There are many secondary characters that are as great as the primaries. In some cases, the sidekicks actually steal the show and you like them better than the heroine or hero. Maybe they didn't have enough page time for how great they were. Anyone can play along! I will post my Sidekicks on Saturday, then whichever day during the week that you would like to post yours, you can put your link in on my page. Just do the following:
• Choose a sidekick *or someone other than the hero or heroine* that you would like to put in the spotlight that fit's in the week's topic
• Share a picture (if you can) and information about the character
• Give the title and author of a book the character can be found in
• Please don't include too many spoilers when describing why the character is such a great sidekick

This week I'm casting the sidekick character who can't stop chasing the elusive pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Algaliarept from Kim Harrison's The Hollows series, or Al, or scary ass demon who's definitely evil and yet I really like him, can't stop chasing Rachel Morgan. She's his pot of gold, or what she'll bring to his existence is, and I don't think it's just a pride thing. Al's no fluffy leprechaun equipped with a staff and charming Irish accent, though he'd be happy to offer that image if you're deathly terrified of leprechauns. He's mean like that. Their first encounter changed the course of Rachel's life and because he became hooked on the idea of owning her soul, it changed the course of his life too. I like Al. 

“From the back came an unearthly, satisfied chuckle. All I could see in the rearview mirror was a dark shadow with red goat-slitted eyes. Fear slithered through me.
Shit, I have a demon in my backseat. What in hell am I playing with?
“Good witch,” Al said, his voice coming from nothing, and I stifled a shudder. “You’re starting to understand.”
Kim Harrison

Thursday, March 27, 2014

I wanted more Ford Aston from the second Rook met him! robgirlbooks' #COYER Review of Taut by J.A. Huss!

4.5 STARS for Taut: The Ford Book (Rook and Ronin spinoff) by J.A. Huss. Emotions have taken over Ford Aston's cold steel heart. Poor Ford. Not only did he fall for his friend's girl, but she did not fall for him, not the way he wanted. What's a guy to do when can't have what he wants? Run away! I was not happy with Ford at the beginning of Taut. I still loved him, but in a tough love, slap upside the head kind of way.

Luckily, Ford runs straight into a blizzard in a place that promises to pull him to a past he's never come to terms with. And even better than facing your demons, is meeting someone so messed up you forget life sucks so bad. Stranded and desperate Ashleigh is such a hard case, we can only hope Hero Ford has a chance to truly shine.

I had the hardest time getting to know Ashleigh. I blame Ford entirely. He offered a helping hand at the same time buried his head in a stinking pile of self-pity. Hard to get to know someone when you don't give a shit. I loved watching him go from oblivious to curious to way out of his comfort zone. 

Despite not being able to really connect with Ash for a good portion of the book, the girl cracked me up more than once. I thought she was perfect for Ford, strong, vulnerable, broken, and fully aware of her worth. She was far more compassionate toward Ford than he deserved and I loved her for that. And holy cow, the two of them had off the charts chemistry! The sex about bold. 

I thought Huss did such a great job unraveling the layers so that we realize what we see is what we get and we're never seeing it the way it actually is. I know that doesn't make any sense, but that's Ford, he's an oddity. Taut is a standalone, but I say read the whole series so you meet Ford the way Rook and Ash did. The journey is a great ride.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Think Out Loud [47] Best serenade ever!

I'm a brand new substitute para educator. Each assignment is a different school, a new set of tasks, and an early morning drive! I love it, especially the drive because I'm nervous and doing my best not to get lost. It makes everything I see vivid and new and worthy of charcoal on paper. 

There was something very special about last Friday's job. First off, they didn't know the school put in a request for a para sub. They wanted a long term para to work one on one with a child with autism. As I waited for them to figure out what the heck to do with me, I got the chance to observe the sweetest kids ever. Really, I fell in love with them by the time the first bell chimed. The teacher decided not to introduce me to the boy with autism since I was a one-day sub. I shrugged off my disappointment, but then the call came in at lunch time. The teacher (who totally rocked by the way) had a meeting and asked me to watch the boy while she was gone. 

So I sat across from him while he tumbled on the couch playing with his Legos. After a few minutes, I recognized his chatter because he was reciting the same lines my son kept reciting last year. "Skylanders! I know this game. Chaos controls the weather!" He looked at me, full on looked at me. I moved to the edge of my seat and played along. He bounced to the movie Frozen and started saying lines. I was having the best time when suddenly he stood right in front of me, threw his arms wide, and sang, "Let it go! Let it go!" My whole body felt like it was flying, that's how wonderful it was! After he sang that song, he moved on to another one. When he got too loud I told him to bring it down and he did. When he took off his socks because he was getting carried away by then, I told him to put them back on. "But I hate wearing socks." It was glorious! In the midst of behavior that typically separates himself from his world, he stopped and communicated so clearly how he felt. 

I'm not sure how much I contributed to his world, but he will be a part of mine for as long as my memory holds. 

This is where I tell you Think Out Loud is such a cool meme that you should get on it and join. I also like to tell you we're cool people. We are. Come on, hang out with us.

Monday, March 24, 2014

I can't resist! I'm signing up for LGBT Month!!

Fighting Dreamer
LGBT Month is hosted by Laura @ Laura Plus Books and Cayce @ Fighting Dreamer.  It runs throughout the month of April and it's here to celebrate LGBT+ readers, LGBT+ authors and of course LGBT+ books.

How can I not support LGBT Month? I plan to read a book, but I haven't made a selection yet. I loved Will Grayson Will Grayson. Sometimes when I need a boost, I think about Tiny Cooper. He's the coolest character ever. Would Tiny be moping and feeling sorry for himself? Not for long. He'd hug a bunch of strangers and belt out a tune in front of the class. If you know of any LGBT-themed happy ending books, or uplifting books, please drop a suggestion. I am not a tragic ending girl. I can't wait to discover books I just have to read, maybe a few movies? I'm also a total movie girl! Happy reading, people, or tragic reading, whatever makes you happy!

Sign ups go through the month of April, so...

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Takers, Givers, and Leavers! robgirlbooks' COYER Book Review of Panic by J.A. Huss

5 STARS! Holy goodness, I loved Panic. I've been rooting for Rook from the moment life proved so full of sh*! that she spent her last ten bucks on a ridiculous coffee instead of on what? You can't start your wrecked life over with no money, no backup, no hope. But through a fluke, fate, luck, karma, whatever, she finds all those things. Panic takes us on her journey past surviving, past falling in love and finding financial security. It's the most painful journey for anyone who experienced abuse. It's time for Rook to heal the wounds from her past.

Ronin plays the perfect role in this installment. He can't take this journey for the love of his life. He can't push or even nudge. He can only love Rook and let her know he loves her. And he's damn good at it. I love Ronin. Yep, I do. Spencer and Ford are pretty much in the same boat, but they have more wiggle room as friends. There isn't much Spencer in this installment, but the little bit he's in just primes us for his standalone we're all waiting to read. Ford really pushes, sometimes too far, and most often for his own benefit. Ford reveals a few of his less pretty layers in this installment, less pretty, but not less lovable.

I love the layout for this story the most. We start off with a scene from Rook's past and that hooked me completely. I wanted more of those flashbacks, but J.A. Huss knew what she was doing. There were moments I laughed out loud and moments I started crying without any warning. I like to know I'm about to bawl my eyes out, and Huss threw me into more than one emotional storm! She's that good.

If you haven't started the Rook and Ronin series and you like your NA contemporary romance with a bit of edge, humor, and spice, get on it. One click this baby.

For all those doing the COYER challenge, I totally suck at it this month! This is my first review, and you know what I did after I read Panic? I bought Taut and read that. So did I clean out my ereader or what? That's okay, but I loved both books so dang much! I hope you're all doing better. Bet you are.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Think Out Loud [46] Need help choosing a movie? I went overboard.

Spring break is approaching, how about a movie marathon? 

For the mature audience...
We're the Millers is insane, raunchy, and full of a sh*! load of swear words. If you are squeamish at all this is not your movie. I laughed so hard I cried. There is a scene I kept pausing and freaking out because, "No! Don't do it. Oh God. I can't look." Man, it was fun.
The Heat with Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy is the best girl buddy movie ever. If you're looking for tons of laughs, unstable characters carrying firearms, a bit of man bashing, and a girl with serious anger management issues, then watch The Heat.
Red 2 is wackier than Red 1. Everything is a few degrees more ridiculous and I loved it! There were a few twists and turns that surprised me. Okay, I confess the biggest reason to watch this movie is for standout Byung-hun Lee.

For the teen or parent of teen audience...

The Kings of Summer was meant to be background noise while I did chores. Instead, I was captivated from the first scene. The kids are jerks and sweet at the same time. The parents are hopefully more caricatures than anything else, but maybe not. I love a story about a journey that takes place within an actual journey of some kind. And really, there is something beautiful and endearing about this tale, yeah, it's a tale, a fun one, sometimes emotional, a bit eye opening, and certainly funny. Oh, and don't believe the Stand By Me comparisons. As much as I love the River Phoenix 80's classic, The Kings of Summer is so much more optimistic or more innocent. Something, just not Stand By Me. Oh, and actor Moises Arias was made of awesome!
The Way Way Back took me back to my childhood summers going to the town pool. I loved this movie start to finish. It had the feel of a YA book, maybe it was the pacing, sort of easygoing. Actor Liam James (who played young Sean on the TV show Psych) was so amazing. I wanted to go back in time and be his friend when I was a kid.

For anyone...

Gravity rocked. Seriously, rent it, buy it. Whatever. It's exciting and touching and 90 minutes of pure captivation. I love stories without bad guys but with the same effect. Space is a deadly, cold bastard and no place for anything living. Everything about it says, stay out, and yet we don't. Humans make fancy suits and tools to survive the harshest environment imaginable. Gravity pits the two together, space and humans. Dang!
The Lego Movie was a visual candyland. I loved it. Everything is awesome is so right. There are so many funny characters in this movie, I'll have to watch it several times to figure out who is my favorite. Plus there's an actual story here and a message and amazing creativity. When I wasn't laughing, I was grinning.
Frozen is out on DVD! The humor is spot on and current. The princess story is far from predictable. I can't wait to watch it again!! Oh, and the music goes from funny to incredibly moving.

People, it's time to join this meme if you haven't. That sounds bossy, because I'm bossy. But really, Think Out Loud is an "anything you want" meme and a way to take a break from the day to day blogger routine. Of course I did just review a bunch of movies, see anything you want.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Coolest dragon ever! robgirlbooks' review of Vampire's Ball (Moonsongs book 5) by E.J. Wesley

4 STARS! Jenny and Marshal are back and gearing up for trouble. Why? Because they're in a heap of it. Vampire's Ball is a true turning point in the series. Jenny started out in Blood Fugue with a bag full of childhood drama and a personality brimming with attitude. She's still feisty and her past still sucks, but she's accepted her new role as Miss Badass Monster Fighter.

In this installment we're on location. I admit to missing Jenny's unpleasant little Texas town, but we get vampires and dragons. How cool is that? Not as cool as E.J.'s slant on dragons. Seriously, I want a spinoff staring Isis. I have a feeling she's on the mean side. I like that. The vamps remained an untapped part of the story. I wanted them fangier or meaner or saucier. There's a budding romance that could totally veer into it's own spinoff as well as a cliffhanger shocker that had me talking to my Kindle and checking E.J.'s website for the next release date! The point is I want more. E.J. is a fantastic storyteller and an autobuy for me.

The Moonsongs serials is a thrilling ride! In this New Adult Urban Fantasy, you get humor, gore, action, a girl who can wield a tomahawk, snarky know-it-all awesome best friends, mystery, and monsters we know but not the way E.J. creates them. You can check out the spanking new look HERE.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

The girls are wild, the boys smokin' hot! Blogger 'Duel' Review for Rock Chick!

Rock Chick by Kristen Ashley stars Indy Savage and her world of crazy! Indy has been avoiding her best friend's brother since he rebuffed her big play for his pants...uh, heart. Now that bullets are flying, there's no avoiding mysterious heartthrob Lee Nightingale. Any rational woman would hand the dangerous mess over to the cops. Indy pretty much starts up a P.I. business. Oh the trouble the girl gets into. Luckily, she surrounds herself with colorful characters, fantastic music, and irresistible flirt-worthy men. 

Just so you know, Bookworm Brandee and I decided to make a tiny wager on the Superbowl like the Governors do, but book blogger style. So this Seahawks girl won Rock Chick...hehe! We read it at the same time and chatted back and forth via email. Here's a bit of our mutual fangirling.

(me) What did you like about Indy when you first meet her in Rock Chick?

I liked that she made coffee for herself first even though it wasn't her apartment or her coffee. That's my kind of girl. 

(Brandee) Hmm, when I first met her...I loved that her mouth had gotten her into trouble. And that she couldn't do anything in the morning before she brushed her teeth and had coffee.
Honestly, I want to BE Indy! I have a major girl-crush. :)

Who were some of your favorite characters and why?
I have a new book boyfriend in Lee. He waited forever to make a move on Indy and when he finally does...oh my. I loved Tex and his crazy-assed-ness. The man hasn't left his block in 20 years and now he can't wait to see what kind of trouble he can get into with Indy. *grin*

Lee is a total hottie, but I love Tex the most. He never treated Indy like she was a beautiful hot mess the way the rest of the men did. He wasn't invisible to Indy and his eccentric/insane way about him never phased her. My second favorite would be Eddie because I'm mad for a guy who loves his best friend more than the love of his life. I really really can't wait to read his story!

Were you surprised the first time you laughed your butt off reading Rock Chick? The tone was light from the beginning, but then Kristen Ashley made me laugh out loud. I have an author crush on her.

Oh yeah...."have you done it?" That was hysterical! And I liked that it took them some time to get there. I mean, Indy'd been waiting an awfully long time anyway. So what was a little longer?!?

Tex was pretty wonderful. And you're right...he did treat her differently than any of the other men. (except for Mr. Kumar) Do you think it was Indy's complete and total acceptance of him that brought him off his block? I liked that about Indy...she accepted everyone for who they are. She may throw you down in a food fight but she accepted you. ;) And Eddie was just...*swoon* He and his provocative tactileness. ;) I giggled (and probably blushed) when he'd touch Indy right in front of Lee. Just so she'd know she had options *ha* I'm really looking forward to his story, too. 

I was surprised when I first laughed...and I think it was on page 3 or something like that. The tone was light (which I was in desperate need of at the time) and I laughed and laughed throughout the book. I'm still giggling at inappropriate times and having to explain to James or the kids...Oh, there was this time in Rock Chick... They're rolling their eyes at me at this point. *ha* Yeah, I have a total crush on Kristen Ashley too! ;)

What did you think about the music? I loved how Indy had clothes that had concert memories and she always knew just the song for whatever the mood. Of course, it helped that Indy's music is my music - or at least the music I grew up listening to. ;) I can still see her cruising in Tex's El Camino with her music blaring! (I'll have to look up the song because I can't remember off the top of my head!) 

You are so right about how Indy accepts people the way they are. I also liked that she couldn't help but flirt with other guys. Poor Lee.

The music was fun and so were her shirts! Her fashion sense made me a little dizzy sometimes, but I loved the scene in Tex's car when she needed an escape. 

My family ask me what I'm laughing at too when I suddenly burst out in giggles. I tried explaining a few of my favorite scenes. They humored me

I loved that she automatically flirted too! And that girl has it down to a science. *ha* Poor Lee, indeed. 

Her fashion sense in general was over the top for me - an outfit to match the restaurant of the night, or theme of the event - but then I don't have much fashion sense, so maybe I'm just jealous! :) I actually loved her for it!

My family is humoring me as well. They do that a lot. :) I've told James there are a few new places we need to go to downtown. And I want to see if there really is a bookstore where Indy's bookstore is. I'll let you know. Oh, I was reading to Sky the part about Kevster when he saved Rosie's 'garden'...she wanted to know what the big deal was. I had to remind her that this book was written before it was legal! *hahaha*

Was there anything in the story that brought you to a stop, not in a good way? I had trouble believing two adults who frequently dated other people would not have the sex talk with each other, at least ask about contraceptives, maybe ask when either last had a physical. And the condom scene in the grocery store was funny, but I couldn't help thinking it was more fitting to a younger woman. Then again maybe not everyone's mom included a "favorite type of condom" tangent in the big puberty sex talk. 

Robyn, I definitely fall into the category of having a mom who did not include the "favorite type of condom" tangent during the sex talk. Actually, I don't remember a sex talk at all. And since Indy was raised by her dad??? Well, I'm giving her the benefit of the doubt. Plus, she was under all that stress. ;) I think I was a little taken aback with the situations Indy got herself into at first - she does get herself into some unbelievable situations - but then I let go because that was part of the fun with Indy.

So shall I make us appointments for Tall Grass Spa for when you're here?!? ;) I swear it was so much fun reading about Indy's antics in my backyard. Anyway, when are we reading Rock Chick Rescue?!?

I had the best time reading Rock Chick with you! I usually never read the teaser for the next novel, but I wanted more immediately. Then I discover we get Eddie's story next, Eddie with the traveling fingers and sexy shades. When are we going to read the next one? 

Oh, and I guess a widower cop might not go on and on about French ticklers and ribbed for her pleasure condoms. Go figure.

As you can see, I LOVED Rock Chick, so did Brandee. 5 easypeasy STARS for this one. I can't wait for the next installment! Here are a couple quotes to hook you if our back and forth didn't do the trick.

"Lee Nightingale doesn’t move slow. One second he’s looking at you, the next second he’s walking away and he has the little satin bow from your panties as a souvenir.”
Ashley, Kristen (2011-03-04). Rock Chick (p. 77).  . Kindle Edition.  

“Honey, I don’t give a fuck if you don’t believe it’s gonna be good between us. I know we’ll both enjoy me proving it to you.” 
Ashley, Kristen (2011-03-04). Rock Chick (p. 296).  . Kindle Edition.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Sidekick Showcase [46] Best and Worst After Parties

Sidekick Showcase, previously known as Sidekick Saturday, is a weekly bookish meme, hosted here by Jaclyn at JC's Book Haven. There are many secondary characters that are as great as the primaries. In some cases, the sidekicks actually steal the show and you like them better than the heroine or hero. Maybe they didn't have enough page time for how great they were. Anyone can play along! I will post my Sidekicks on Saturday, then whichever day during the week that you would like to post yours, you can put your link in on my page. Just do the following:
• Choose a sidekick *or someone other than the hero or heroine* that you would like to put in the spotlight that fit's in the week's topic
• Share a picture (if you can) and information about the character
• Give the title and author of a book the character can be found in
• Please don't include too many spoilers when describing why the character is such a great sidekick

You can't have the Oscars without the after parties. What cast of side characters would throw the wildest, most awesome after party? My vote is the cast of Rock Chick. First off, Indy attracts chaos, and if there's a party, she's there dressed in her strange belt buckle/slutty/rocker/cowgirl style. Her best friend is a wild child. If a bad guy needs chasing, she'll break every traffic law and do it. Since Indy also attracts strays, any number of them will jump to her defense or throw her in the fire depending on the situation. The men in the book are hopped up on their own good looks and an abundance of testosterone. The women stick together, give them a catty bitch and they'll take her fight style! I would kill for an invite!

“Girlie, I'm from Texas. We shoot at each other to say good morning.”
Kristen Ashley, Rock Chick

“Rule Number One in the India Savage Life Code: When in doubt or possible trouble, lie.”
Kristen Ashley, Rock Chick

“I don't have any stories. All that shit I tell you actually happens. ”
Kristen Ashley, Rock Chick

“I was sitting behind the book counter reading through a magazine someone had left behind and Tex was sitting in the middle of one of the couches, looking wild-eyed and frightening.
“This is boring,” Tex said.
I looked up from the extraordinary tale of the courage of a young man faced with a rare form of cancer and then looked back down without answering.
What could I say? It was boring.
“Do something,” Tex demanded.
I looked up again.
“What do you want me to do?”
“I don’t know, something. Isn’t it on someone’s schedule today to kidnap you and hold you hostage?”
Oh, dear Lord.
“All the bad guys are either dead or behind bars,” I told him.
Kristen Ashely

I never hear about the shitty Oscar parties. I bet they exist, but they could never compare to an after party put on by the cast of the Morganville Series. Get togethers in this small Texas town always turn out bloody. There will be screams and snarky bitches willing to throw you to the wolves...vampires. The gang, Claire, Shane, Michael, and Eve, will be there to save the day, but most likely end up making some insane deal that jeopardizes the entire human population. Some uber bad guy will take center stage and announce something ridiculous while laughing the evil guy laugh. If Myrnin took part in the planning, I bet he invites his big scary spider not wanting to leave him out. There's really no way a Morganville party can be a good situation.

“Crap, are you thinking what I'm thinking?"
"I'm thinking we have about fifteen vampires and no blood," Claire said. "Is that it?"
"No, I was thinking we're out of chips. Of course that's what I was thinking.”
Rachel Caine, Feast of Fools

“Run first,' Shane said. 'Mourn later.'
It was the perfect motto for Morganville.”
Rachel Caine, Glass Houses

“Follow me,” Myrnin said. “And do stay together. And by the way, this is the last time I go anywhere with you people. You are all insane.”
Rachel Caine, Bite Club

“Seriously,” Shane said, “this kind of is the worst situation we’ve ever been in, right?”
“Speak for yourself,” Michael said. “I got myself killed last year. Twice.”
“Oh yeah. You’re right—last year really sucked for you.”
Rachel Caine, Kiss of Death

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Sharing the love!

Sand Heart wholeThank you to the wonderful bloggers who took part in the Shadow Town Blog Tour! Maggie Lane is a cool chick and you helped me introduce her to the world. 

Tobi at Forget the Housework, I'm Reading not only is a fangirl after my own heart, but she has fun features like Wanton Wednesday and Freebie Friday.

Texxie at PRUF Reads is sure to raise a brow and tempt you to the dark side.

Becky at Twisted Book Junkie pulls you into steampunk, horror, sci-fi, romance, you name it!

Jaclyn at JC's Book Haven hosts Sidekick Showcase, a meme where you cast your favorite side characters. She loves all things Harry Potter, Ilona Andrews, and Kim Harrison! You'll love her reviews!

Athina at Between My Lines exposes the world of writing in her discussion posts and tempts wussy readers (like me) into books with a jagged edge.

Jennifer at Donnie Darko Girl pulls you into the heart of the books she reviews. She loves Daryl Dixon from The Walking Dead (who doesn't, right?). She obliterates my TBR list.

Laura at Laura Plus Books started out as Music Plus Books and lured me with her awesome music reviews. She keeps me coming back with her quick-witted book reviews and discussion posts.

Margay at Margay Leah Justice is a book lover and writer (check out her book Sloane Wolf). You'll be sure to find your next read in the cool books she features!

E.J. at The Open Vein is not only the writer of the New Adult Urban Fantasy Moonsongs Series, but a blogger who shines light on the industry. He's an uber fan and promoter of New Adult.

Brandee at Bookworm Brandee LOVES stories and her reviews reflect this passion. She'll make you laugh. She'll make you cry. She'll make you come back for more.

Cindy at Cindy's Love of Books is sure to load your TBR list with fantastic reads! And her cool The Mailbox Post shares new gets that range from The Lego Movie Activity Book to A.G. Howard's Splintered.

Jodie at Aussie Bookworm features a different Aussie author each month. She has a thing for dystopian, but the girl loves her steamy reads just as much as the softer romances.

Jillian at Busy Moms Book Reviews is adding her contribution a bit later, but you're sure to find a thrilling book you must read.

If you all haven't stopped by and checked out their posts and features, click click! If you haven't checked out my New Adult PNR novel Shadow Town, click click?

p.s. The emails have gone out to the winners. Thank you to everyone who stopped by the tour, commented, followed, entered the giveaway, all that jazz. You're neat!

"By CMEarnest (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons"

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Think Out Loud [45] Stories are everywhere.

I had to go to the old building today. My sister calls it a castle because of the brick exterior and the tower. I don't tell her it's a decommissioned school straight out of one of my nightmares. I treat the place with a healthy dose of respect because at any moment I'll have to run like I did in the dream I had so many years ago but still never forgot. 

Inside, the bright cream walls, large windows, and countless lights vaporize ghostly images of cracked green paint and near zombie like teachers. A cheery blond woman behind the security desks asks me what I'm there for. I tell her I'm getting my badge, the final step to be a substitute para in the new job. I match her cheerfulness because the dream is gone like faraway smoke and I'm not late. I'm always late. I pat my pocket because my old paperback is in a ziplock bag just waiting for me to have a long wait time. She assumes I know where to go because I've been there before for orientation and fingerprinting. I don't know where to go because I never know where to go. I smile and repeat her directions in the hopes my brain will hold on to the information and I won't go wandering like the previous times. 

Two steps down the hall and I'm taken back to my grandma's house. I take a deep breath, feel the emotion of going from nightmares to one of my favorite places in the world. I fight the last time I saw her house, empty, owned by people who never swing on the best porch swing ever, who let newspapers decorate the old boards in front of the door instead of bright purple and red petunias, her favorites. And I think of a character experiencing this strange smell, this old place. I decide she's 14 and pissy. Those two go together well. "What is that smell?" Not a hint of food, not a whisper of conversation. A cemetery has more life. She wonders if her grandmother saved all the cooking and visiting for the summer when her grandkids came to visit. I decide she cares about this, that she wants her grandmother to have big meals and noise even when no one else is there. She looks at the carpet and thinks hardwood floors are hiding beneath and that's the smell. "Musty? What the fuck is musty anyway?" So my protagonist has a mouth on her. I can live with that. 

I reach the stairs with soft feet because my natural inclination is to stomp. These are great stomping steps. I think of the janitor at my old art school. "Robyn, you walk those stairs like you weigh 500lbs." We chatted all the time. I tiptoe now in life, sh, don't see me. I'm just passing through. I can't decide if my character will start where I am and work toward making noise. 

All this passes through my mind in the few minutes it takes me to walk from my car to the old building, up three flights of stairs. I don't get to read my book at all because I'm on time. I realize as I sit on the stool in front of the camera "badge" meant picture badge. I sniffle a little and shrug. Bad pictures are cool too.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Sidekick Showcase [45] Best and Worst Dressed!

Sidekick Showcase, previously known as Sidekick Saturday, is a weekly bookish meme, hosted here by Jaclyn at JC's Book Haven. There are many secondary characters that are as great as the primaries. In some cases, the sidekicks actually steal the show and you like them better than the heroine or hero. Maybe they didn't have enough page time for how great they were. Anyone can play along! I will post my Sidekicks on Saturday, then whichever day during the week that you would like to post yours, you can put your link in on my page. Just do the following:
• Choose a sidekick *or someone other than the hero or heroine* that you would like to put in the spotlight that fit's in the week's topic
• Share a picture (if you can) and information about the character
• Give the title and author of a book the character can be found in
• Please don't include too many spoilers when describing why the character is such a great sidekick
• The day of your post, put your link in below and grab the code for your post so you can see the others that post theirs throughout the week as well

Alexander Skarsgard at True Blood premiere partyI confess I just wanted an excuse to post a picture of Eric from True Blood. If he finagled an invite to the Oscars, he'd dazzle. With his attitude, looks, and style, forget about it. (I realize we'd have a sunlight issue...easily fixable with a certain blood type.)

“Life begins at night” 
Charlaine Harris, Dead Until Dark
“Should I just bite you, and end it all?", he whispered. "I would never have to think about you again. Thinking about you is an annoying habit and one I want to be rid of.”
Charlaine Harris, Dead as a Doornail

“Eric was holding my hands, and I was digging my nails into him like we were doing something else. He won't mind, I though, as I realized I'd drawn blood. And sure enough, he didn't. "Let go," he advised me, and I loosened my grip on his hands. "No, not of me," he said smiling. "You can hold on to me as long as you want.”
Charlaine Harris, Club Dead

Kristin Bauer van Straten (7595198530)

I love Pam! She's one of my favorite characters in the series (book and TV), but the woman is a terrible dresser. Between the matronly outfits, the snazzy sweatsuits, and the Domme leather get ups, I can just imagine what she'd wear to an awards show. See this look on her face here? She's about to bite me for this post.

“You've reached Fantasia, where the undead live again every night," "For bar hours, press one. To make a party reservation, press two. To talk to a live person or a dead vampire, press three. Or, if you were intending to leave a humorous prank message on our answering machine, know this: we will find you.” 

“You know I love you more when you're cold and heartless.”

“Pam said, "Sookie, I brought you something, too. I never thought I'd want to spend time with a human, but you're more tolerable than most ...”
Charlaine Harris, Deadlocked

"By Kristin Dos Santos from Los Angeles, California, United States (Alexander Skarsgard  Uploaded by Tabercil) [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons"
"By Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons"

In case you haven't entered the Shadow Town and Amazon Gift Card Giveaway, here's the link. Click clik! Oh, and Shadow Town is still 99 cents on Amazon and click?

Saturday, March 1, 2014

When life's kicking your butt, how about a theme song? [3] Musicals!

The theme this month is musicals! "Why?" you ask with a slight hint of no way in your voice? Because how fun is that? Plus, I just got a new job working in the schools. Can't you just see me breaking out in song with the kids? No? Well, never mind that. When things get tough or stressful with my new job, I'll dive into a song, the one I chose for March, or maybe one you offer up in the comments...hint hint.

I chose I've Got a Dream from one of my favorites, Tangled!
My mom chose...the best song from A Chorus Line, Dance: Ten; Looks: Three...
John and I both choose Love is an Open Door from Frozen!
When I asked Will for his song choice he offered his patented response as of late...Never mind. Awesome. When I asked my sister she coughed. Yep, the girl is down with a bug. 
You can find March's working playlist on YouTube.