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The Sunday Post #129

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Caffeinated Book Reviewer.
It's a chance to share news - a post to recap the past week on your blog, 
showcase books and things we have received, and share news about what is
coming up on your blog in the week ahead. You can find the info here:

It's been a busy week but a good one. At work we're gearing up for our biggest trade show of the year which takes place the week after Thanksgiving. With next week being a short week, that means this week was plenty hectic with preparations. Yesterday The Husband was in St. Petersburg for a car show (and won Best in Show in his class) while I ran a bunch of errands and had an impromptu hair appointment (I called on a whim and my stylist had a last minute opening - score!). Today I'll be headed to the grocery store with a long list for the Thanksgiving menu. I plan to be there when they open the doors because I just know it's going to be packed today. (Crowds... ugh!) 

BookBub had a fun article this week on 10 Binge-Worthy Books to Read Over Thanksgiving Break. So whether you have some time off, of will be spending hours in a car or plane traveling to your turkey day destination, you can check out their picks.

I've been having way too much fun watching these 5 Seconds Rule clips from Ellen's show. :)

Tuesday, November 13
Top Ten Tuesday: Bookish Merchandise

Wednesday, November 14
WWW Wednesday #31

Friday, November 16



I DNF'd this at 190 pages. You can find out why in my ranty review.

What He Doesn't Know (What He Doesn't Know #1) *audiobook* - Kandi Steiner
This was my first by Kandi Steiner and she definitely has a way of telling an emotional story that pulls you in.

The Sarina Bowen binge continues! 

What He Always Knew (What He Doesn't Know Duet #2) - Kandi Steiner
I've gotta see how this ends. The first book ended with not one but two twists. Gah!


How was your week? Any new books? Any news to share? 
I'd love to hear about it!

Short Take Reviews: The Ranty Edition

Burn For Me (Hidden Legacy #1)
Ilona Andrews
Publication date: October 28, 2014
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Nevada Baylor is faced with the most challenging case of her detective career—a suicide mission to bring in a suspect in a volatile case. Nevada isn’t sure she has the chops. Her quarry is a Prime, the highest rank of magic user, who can set anyone and anything on fire.

Then she’s kidnapped by Connor “Mad” Rogan—a darkly tempting billionaire with equally devastating powers. Torn between wanting to run or surrender to their overwhelming attraction, Nevada must join forces with Rogan to stay alive.
Rogan’s after the same target, so he needs Nevada. But she’s getting under his skin, making him care about someone other than himself for a change. And, as Rogan has learned, love can be as perilous as death, especially in the magic world. 

This book has crazy high rating on GoodReads (4.35). And I was excited to read it. Find a new urban fantasy series to get into. But that didn't happen. To be fair, I don't think it's really the story. I lay 90% of the blame on the narration. It was BAD. And I really, REALLY disliked it. And basically, it ruined the book for me.

This was the first time I encountered Renee Raudman's narration and I've gotta say: not a fan. To start, there's the twangy country accents. Yes, the story is set in Texas but it's in metropolitan Houston, not hillbilly central. Then there was the voice for the main character's grandmother - an active woman who was maybe sixty and yet sounded like a frail little grandma at age 101. It was just such a cliched "little old lady" voice that it was like something out of a cartoon. In fact, most of the characters sounded years beyond their stated age - including Rogan, who sounded like a crusty old cowboy instead of a 30 year old badass.

The story was okay but a mostly unsatisfying. Nevada tried to bring in a fugitive while verbally sparring with Rogan. In one sentence she was referring to him as a psychopath, in the next she was drooling over his abs. *eye roll* But it was the narration that made Nevada unlikable, every character sound decades older than they were, and as if every Texan was a country bumpkin. Ugh. I could switch to the books instead of the audio and continue on, but I'm afraid the bad experience with this one has pretty much ruined the series for me.


This Is Kind of an Epic Love Story
Kheryn Callender
Publication date: October 30, 2018
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary
Nathan Bird doesn’t believe in happy endings.

Although he’s the ultimate film buff and an aspiring screenwriter, Nate’s seen the demise of too many relationships to believe that happy endings exist in real life.

Playing it safe to avoid a broken heart has been his MO ever since his father died and left his mom to unravel—but this strategy is not without fault. His best-friend-turned-girlfriend-turned-best-friend-again, Florence, is set on making sure Nate finds someone else. And in a twist that is rom-com-worthy, someone does come along: Oliver James Hern├índez, his childhood best friend.
After a painful mix-up when they were little, Nate finally has the chance to tell Ollie the truth about his feelings. But can Nate find the courage to pursue his own happily ever after?  

Oh, the high hopes I had for this one! It's contemporary, it's YA, it had a synopsis that hooked me, my trusted book buddy gave it 4 stars. But no, I have no love for this set of miserable characters.

Main character Nate was thoroughly unlikable. He was moody and taciturn. He was standoffish and treated his friends poorly, often to the point of being intentionally hurtful. Worse, he knew what he was doing and did it anyway. Yes, he was dealing with a recent break-up (and losing his father as a child) but I couldn't see how any of it excused his behavior.

He "best friend" (ha, some friend!) and ex-girlfriend Flo was horrible. She cheated on him when they were together and then had the audacity to insist he be friends with her new girlfriend. WT-actual-F? And when he showed any emotion about her cheating, she copped an attitude. When he showed interest in Ollie, she got mad and quit speaking to him. Note to Nate: this person is not your friend!

The only one I actually liked was poor Ollie. And I felt like telling him to run-don't-walk back to Santa Fe and ditch these toxic people.

They argued, they gave each other the silent treatment, they made up. Rinse and repeat. I'd had enough.

DNF @ 192 pages


WWW Wednesday #31 | November 14, 2018

WWW Wednesdays is a meme hosted by Taking on a World of Words.
Just answer three questions and share what you're reading.

This Is Kind of an Epic Love Story - Kheryn Callender
I'm about 90 pages in and I'm still trying to get a feel for main character Nathan. His ex-best friend Ollie has moved back and I'm loving him so far.

What He Doesn't Know - Kandi Steiner 
Oh, the angst! I'm at about the 50% mark (listening to this one on audio) and the emotions of these characters are all over the place. This is a duology so I foresee plenty of drama on the horizon.

Keepsake (True North #3) - Sarina Bowen
This companion series gets better and better! I loved Zach and Lark's story. Both had so much hurt in their past. I loved Zach's willingness to let Lark go (even though it broke his heart - and mine), knowing she needed time to heal. I was left wanting more of these two.

The Truth About Lies - Aly Martinez

This one was... kind of ridiculous. LOL I mean, every single plot thread was so over the top. Murder and vengeance, ruthless crime lords/pimps, the woman in the sex industry who has a heart of gold... it was just too much to handle. I will say that this one has crazy high ratings on GoodReads so maybe it's just me.

I'm on a Sarina Bowen roll so I definitely plan on continuing the True North series with Bountiful (but seriously, cringey cover alert!).  

What are you currently reading?
I wanna know! :)

Top Ten Tuesday: Bookish Merchandise

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.

This week's Top Ten Tuesday topic: 
Bookish Merchandise
I'm not really a collector of bookish merchandise. Neither do I consider myself part of any fandom (and I abhor clutter) so I don't tend to collect bookish "stuff." But there have been a few items I've picked up over the years so in lieu of a bookish merch wishlist (since I don't have one), I'm going to share a few of the things I already own.

Floral book sleeve from The Cozy Life shop at etsy
ACOMAF notebook from eviebookish at RedBubble
Daemon and Katy magnetic bookmarks from Magic Bookmarks at etsy
It's All About the Wingspan shirt from DigitalComa at RedBubble
The Bronze Horseman bookmark from Jane's Tiny Things at etsy
Beauty and the Beast tote from Evie Seo at Society 6
Just Read pouch from eviebookish at RedBubble
Book Bodyguard shirt* from Book Boyfriend Boutique at etsy
*worn by my husband at book signings/events :)
It Ends With Us bookmark from Bookmarky at etsy
Professional Bookworm phone case from Bookworm Boutique at Society 6

Do you collect bookish merchandise? 

The Sunday Post #128

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Caffeinated Book Reviewer.
It's a chance to share news - a post to recap the past week on your blog, 
showcase books and things we have received, and share news about what is
coming up on your blog in the week ahead. You can find the info here:

Today, November 11, is Veterans Day, although it's being officially observed tomorrow so Monday will be the federal holiday. It's a day to honor all who have served the country, in war or peace, dead or alive, although it's largely intended to thank living veterans for their sacrifices. 

Today I honor my husband, Robert, who served this country for 21 years. As a Chief Hospital Corpsman he was often stationed with the Marines, who usually referred to him as "Doc." In times of crisis, when others took cover, it was Robert who ran toward danger and to the injured. During Operation Desert Storm it was Robert who helped mobilize the Navy's medical personnel and ensure they were at the ready and in place when needed. He served his time both on U.S. soil - in North Carolina, in Georgia, in Illinois, and in Florida at the Navy's Experimental Diving Unit - and on missions that took him to Columbia, Croatia, Beirut, Mogadishu and more.

Robert is a patriot to his core. He was called to serve - and would do it all again. I am in awe of his honor and integrity and sacrifice. It is humbling. And not just today, but especially today, I thank him and so many others who have placed service above self. 


Tuesday, November 6
Top Ten Tuesday: Backlist Edition

Wednesday, November 7
WWW Wednesday #30

Friday, November 9

This series just gets better and better.

Quite Girl in a Noisy World - Debbie Tung
A graphic novel that was (almost disturbingly) relatable.

Every single plot thread was completely over the top, and I thought my eyes were going to roll right out of my head, but it was entertaining enough. Mostly.

Off to a great start!

What He Doesn't Know - Kandi Steiner
I've heard good things about Kandi Steiner so I'm giving this one a try. Although, the narrator has an odd thing about dragging out the last word of every sentence and I can't stop noticing it. Gah!

Because Sophie's review convinced me it is a must-read.

How was your week? Any new books? Any news to share? 
I'd love to hear about it!