Teaser Tuesdays

TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:

  • Grab your current read.
  • Let the book fall open to a random page.
  • Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
  • You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
  • Please avoid spoilers!

Here's my teaser for today:

You saw me before I saw you. In the airport, that day in August, you had that look in your eyes, as though you wanted something from me, as though you'd wanted it for a long time.

(Pg 1, Stolen by Lucy Christopher)


Musing Mondays

Today’s MUSING MONDAYS post is about mid-year reading…

Now that we’ve come to the middle of the year, what do you think of your 2009 reading so far? Read anything interesting that you’d like to share? Any outstanding favourites?

I can't believe half of the year is almost gone! As far as my reading is concerned, I think my last year reading is much better than this year as I read fifty books as compared to 42 at this point of time. Given the rate, I think I would be able to read 80 books by the end of the year, but even though if I don't I wouldn't feel bad either though I have to admit I would be disappointed. Nonetheless, I had read several good ones and I am expecting more great books to come in the near future (One example: Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins)!

Here are some of my favourites thus far:







How's your reading so far? And what are your favourites?


Mailbox Monday is hosted by Marcia from The Printed Page.

These are what I received in my mailbox last week:

1) Eve of Darkness by S.J. Day (Marked Series #1)

2) Rooftops of Tehran by Mahbod Seraji

3) The Chosen One by Carol Lynch Williams

4) Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler

5) Song of Renewal by Emily Sue Harvey (review copy)

Edit to Add:

I received The Actor and the Housewife by Shannon Hale after I posted this post and I am so excited about getting this one! Many thanks to the publisher for sending this book to me!

So what books came into your house last week?

ISBN-13: 9780778325970
Publisher: Mira
Published: May 2009
384 pgs


Rachel is finally getting it right. After years of wandering, she's married the perfect man and settled into the ideal life. But as her sleepy little town turns into a killing ground, she realizes that this new life might come at too high a price.

Caleb Middleton says he's returned home to set things right. But as her husband's dangerous brother circles like a hungry wolf, poking holes in her perfect world, Rachel draws her young daughter in close. The rain and violence keep coming, and Rachel must decide whether to trust her dream life or her instincts…before the town of Silver Falls becomes her grave.


Julia and Alice are my two favourite blogger friends and whenever there is any new releases by Anne Stuart (or any other books that interest us for that matter), we always make it a "tradition" to read it together. We will drop notes to each other's emails to inform about our progress and also to discuss about the book and so forth; it is always fun and I always look forward to our joint-readings.

Anyway, this time round we decided to do something different for our reviews. So instead of us posting our reviews and thoughts about the book as usual, each of us will prepare three questions and we will answer them accordingly. Below are our questions as well as my answers to them. Please don't forget to visit Alice's and Julia's blogs to read their answers too!

Our Joint-Reading Q&As

Alice's questions:

1. Are there any ideas that make you stop and think, lessons learned, etc.; for example, be more wary before jumping into a relationship – and how have you changed after reading it?
I would say never to judge a person by his looks and also to trust your instincts. For Rachel's (the heroine) case, her weakness is that though she knows in a way that something is not right with her husband, David, but she still go on into telling herself to believe him (despite her daughter, Sophie, who is also thinking the same thing). Although I can't really blame Rachel since she is marrying David thinking he would provide security and a place for Sophie to stay, I think that she should at least know that person well enough before she jumps into a relationship with him, no matter how trustworthy or harmless he may seem to be (I know this can be pretty hard and tricky).

2. Were you able to think of any connections between the book and your life, perhaps in ways that touched you, reminded you of your own life, or reminded you of event(s) that happened to someone else? It may not be murder...
Hmm... I can't really think of any connections between the book and my life, but I would say all mothers would be able to understand Rachel's concern and devotion to Sophie. I wouldn't want anyone or anything to hurt my children too, and I will do all means to protect them. In the story, Rachel did whatever she can to provide a safe and happy life for Sophie. Being a photographer, she gets to travel around the world but she chooses to stay in Silver Falls and married David, thinking she has finally found a home for Sophie but unfortunately David turned out to be the wrong man for her.

3. Relating to the characters in the book, which one is your favorite? Is there anyone that you hate or detest? Is there something about the character that you'd like to change? If yes, what?
Caleb, the hero and Maggie, the town sheriff are my favourite characters in this story. I liked Caleb because he doesn't seem to bear any grudges (it has to do with his family) and he, in fact is a responsible man in my opinion. As for Maggie, I admire her because she is simply one heroic lady cop.

Well, I can't say there's anyone whom I really hate or detest. If I have to name one, it has to be David since he is the bad guy here but I believe there are reasons why he chose to be one. And for the last question, I would like Rachel to be able to view things clearly instead of contradicting herself at times (which I have to say irritates me on most occasions).

Julia's questions:

1. I remember Anne Stuart said that SILVER FALLS was inspired by Ted Bundy who lived with a woman and her daughter during part of his killing spree and never touched them. And she wondered what that would be like for woman who living with a monster and never knew it. How did that affected you while reading SILVER FALLS, knowing that in real life there were a Ted Bundy just like David?
Wow, that's interesting! I never knew this book was inspired by a person, no matter how bad he is. I think it is terrifying to live with a monster without knowing it. It is equally terrifying to marry someone who has a split personality; meaning he/she could treat you very well but doing other bad things behind your back (I am not talking about extramarital affairs). There are all sorts of people in this world, I just think that one should be alert and careful who he/she should befriend with.

2. Anne Stuart's books are more on the dark, thrilling and Gothics side with a element of good vs evil. From her earlier work or most of her recent work, how does SILVER FALLS compare to those? Was there any difference? What did you like and didn't like about SILVER FALLS?
One thing I love about Anne Stuart's books is the way she portrays her heroes in a dark sort of way. He could be a bad boy or even an assassin, but in the end her readers always fall in love with her heroes because they are not as bad or as dark as they seem in the beginning. Silver Falls falls into that category because of Caleb and how bad or 'dangerous' he appears to be.

As much as I love Anne Stuart's book, I have not read all of her books though. I had read most of her recent ones, and I am very interested to read her works published during the 80s. They are so hard to find! I managed to mooch one or two copy and I read from Anne Stuart's blog that you could get a used copy of her first published book (1974), Barrett's Hill, at a mere US$200 on Amazon! (I would be the first one to grab it if I have some extra money!)

I think Anne Stuart's signature is writing dark heroes and she is very good at it! I like everything she writes, and Silver Falls is no exception.

3. What did you think about the cover art for SILVER FALLS? Love it? Hate it? Your opinion?
I don't know about you, but I think the cover for Silver Falls looks more like a horror/thriller book than a romantic suspense. Needless to say, this is my least favourite cover among all Stuart's books but still, what most matters is the story and not the cover art, although I think the latter would be useful to entice a new reader into picking up her books and read them.

And finally, here's my questions:

1. What do you think of the hero and the heroine?
I think there is only one word to describe the hero and the heroine: opposite attracts! Caleb is unpredictable at times, and Rachel is just plain stubborn. I just liked reading the tension and how chemistry sparks between them.

2. What do you think of David's behaviour to the victims? Did it take away all your surprises when he is shown as the murderer from the beginning of the story? Or would you prefer to find out who's the murderer towards the end of the story? Why or why not?
I think David is simply a sick man, but I also felt sorry for him after reading the end of the story. Apparently he needs help in certain departments, but he is also a proud man so maybe this is one reason why he took the wrong path and towards the end of no return. I have to admit I was a little disappointed when David is portrayed as the murderer from the beginning of the story, but that does not stop me from reading it because finding out what he might do next is equally thrilling. Anyway, this is just another writing style and as long as the story entice me, I am all for anything.

3. What attracts the heroine to the hero, considering he is her "brother-in-law"?
I would think it is his never-give-up attitude that attracts Rachel to Caleb; and moreover Caleb is a very persistent man so there is no way Rachel could resist him and say no to him (although it took Caleb several attempts!). Besides that, I couldn't feel the chemistry between Rachel and David, despite they are married. I am not surprised she is not in love with him in the first place, after all she did state that she is marrying David because she thinks she could trust him and that he could provide a home to Sophie.


I hope you enjoyed reading this Q&A review. Do you prefer this format, or the usual review format? I would love to hear from you!

Other reviews:
(Let me know if I missed yours.)
ISBN: 9780007314362
Publisher: HarperCollins
Published: May 2009
360 pgs

I had read several tales about faeries, but to read one with a botanical twist is entirely a new experience to me. And this is what Wings is about.

Fifteen-year-old Laurel looks like an ordinary girl to anyone, but beneath all she is actually a faery whose duty is to guard the gateways to Avalon from the evil trolls along with a few other faeries.

However, she does not know about her true identity and she went on her life as per normal. Though she has a strange habit of consuming nothing but vegetables, fuits and sugared drinks, she and her adoptive parents dismissed it as one own's eating preference and nothing more. Being homeschooled all her life, she is both excited and terrified during her first day as a sophomore at Del Norte High School when they moved to Crescent City. But the most wonderful thing is, she gets through it and get to know a great looking boy named David. They became good friends quickly, and it is no surprise that they are attracted to each other too.

All things looks good to Laurel until she discovered a zit behind her back, and it grew at a terrifying speed until she is shocked to find what resembles a blossom is growing on her back. Desperate and feeling helpless, she turns to David as she felt she trusted him and considering that he has an interest for biology. But that is not all, Laurel's father soon becomes very sick and her mother is considering of selling their property in Orick and it is also at that moment that she meets Tamani, who is actually a faery like her and is a sentry guarding the gateways. However, he has reasons being a sentry. One reason is he is guardian to Laurel and he has strong feelings towards her.

Laurel soon find out about her identity but what really threatens her is she has to face the evil troll who managed to entice her mother into selling their property in Orick which is a gateway to Avalon, and the fact that her father is on the brink of death that is caused by the troll who wanted to get ahold of their property. Now Laurel must risk her life in preventing their property from falling into the wrong hands and saving her father, and alas deciding where her heart belongs - in Crescent City or Avalon.

I have to admit I had a great time flipping through the pages, though the first few chapters reminded me a little from the Twilight Saga. But I was most absolutely fascinated by the faeries origin (from plants) and reading about their life and how they pollinate is utterly refreshing.

There is nothing too complex about the characters though, but I wish there are more depths to the characters and the chemistry between Laurel and David is not as great as I had first anticipated. But I will not make the judgement too quickly considering this is the first installment, and whether or not Laurel chooses to be with David or Tamani still remains a mystery.

All in all, this is an entertaining debut and I am definitely looking forward for more.

Other reviews:
(Let me know if I missed yours.)
Hamburg, Germany

This is a weekly event hosted by Marcia of The Printed Page every Wednesday.

Marcia says:

I love beautiful, and interesting, cover art so every Wednesday I post my 'Cover Attraction' for the week along with a synopsis of the book. Everyone is welcome to stop by and, if they'd like, post a link to their favorite weekly book cover.

* * * * *

My find this week is Ash by Malinda Lo. This book is not even released yet (until September) but I fell in love with the cover and plus, I am thoroughly hooked by the synopsis!

ISBN-13: 9780316040099
Publisher: Little Brown Bks Young Readers
Published: September 2009


In the wake of her father’s death, Ash is left at the mercy of her cruel stepmother. Consumed with grief, her only joy comes by the light of the dying hearth fire, re-reading the fairy tales her mother once told her. In her dreams, someday the fairies will steal her away, as they are said to do. When she meets the dark and dangerous fairy Sidhean, she believes that her wish may be granted.

The day that Ash meets Kaisa, the King’s Huntress, her heart begins to change. Instead of chasing fairies, Ash learns to hunt with Kaisa. Though their friendship is as delicate as a new bloom, it reawakens Ash’s capacity for love—and her desire to live. But Sidhean has already claimed Ash for his own, and she must make a choice between fairy tale dreams and true love.

Entrancing, empowering, and romantic, Ash is about the connection between life and love, and solitude and death, where transformation can come from even the deepest grief.

* * * * *

To find out more or participate, go to The Printed Page every Wednesday.

All right... I told myself I won't be joining any more reading challenges but I just couldn't turn this one down, and not to mention I got a little nudge from Alice who told me it would be fun if we are to read this series together! How can I say no? ;-P

Anyway, I'm in and here are the rules:

1. Between July 1, 2009, and June 30, 2010, catch up on Charlaine Harris's Southern Vampire series. No matter if you're starting with book 1 or book 8, you have a year to read all about Sookie. Read Sookie in print, listen to the audio, read an eBook -- format is not an issue.

2. Sign up using Mr. Linky. Put your name in the top box. For the bottom box, please use the URL that links specifically to your blog post about this challenge, not to your blog's home page.

3. After July 4, I'll create a post with another Mr. Linky where you can link your reviews so everyone can read them track your progress.

4. If you don't have a blog and want to join in, sign up in the comments here. Later, let us know about your progress by leaving comments on the review link page.

The Books:

Dead Until Dark (Already read before this challenge)
Living Dead in Dallas
Club Dead
Dead to the World
Dead as a Doornail
Definitely Dead
All Together Dead
From Dead to Worse
Dead and Gone

Please visit Beth's blog if you are interested in joining this challenge!

Teaser Tuesdays

TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:

  • Grab your current read.
  • Let the book fall open to a random page.
  • Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
  • You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
  • Please avoid spoilers!

Science fiction author, Sharon Lee has declared today (23 June) to be the Fantasy and Science Fiction Writers Day thus I am reading Wings by Aprilynne Pike as a celebration!

By the time Thursday rolled around, Laurel could no longer deny that whatever this thing was on her back, it wasn't a zit. Not only had it continued growing the last two days, it seemed to be growing faster.

(Pg 53, Wings by Aprilynne Pike)

Elizabeth Leiknes is the author of The Sinful Life of Lucy Burns and I had a fun time reading her book. (Do check out my review if you have not done so.)

Q&A with Elizabeth Leiknes
(with courtesy of the publisher)


Why did you write this book?
While pregnant with my first son, it occurred to me that with motherhood drawing near, I had a small window of time in which to realize a lifelong dream of writing a novel. I wrote throughout my pregnancy, and completed the novel while on maternity leave. Why I wrote it is tough to answer. It was clearly more than an item on my to-do list. Once Lucy evolved from an idea to a constant companion in my mind, it became more of a compulsion than a task to tell her story.

How did it come about?
For a college writing class, I wrote a short story entitled "The Furnace". In it, a woman named Lucy Burns works as a Faustian henchwoman who escorts very bad people to her basement furnace, and ultimately, their death. My husband actually came up with a lot of the premise. But when I decided to expand the story into a full length novel, I wanted Lucy to have a solid reason, one routed in goodness, for doing what she does, so I developed her back story and tempered it all with a healthy dose of Midwestern guilt.

What else have you written?
My first experience with publishing my work wasan article entitled "Writing Spaces: Expanding the One-Story House", which was published in The Quarterly, a publication of the National Writing Project. The Sinful Life of Lucy Burns is my first novel, written about five years ago. Since then, I've written a second novel, Black-Eyed Susan, and a third, The Understory. Currently, I'm working on my fourth novel.

When did you discover you wanted to be a writer?
I'm not sure I knew it then, but while growing up in a very small town in Iowa, (population 78, if you included pets) I began my own newspaper, in which I wrote silly jokes and stories about community members. I copied it on my dad's copier at work, and delivered it via my banana-seat bicycle. I doubt if anyone really read it,but I definitely liked the idea of someone reading what I'd written. Later in fifth grade, I wrote a short story from the point of view of a pumpkin who wasn't picked at the pumpkin patch, and despite its strange sentimentality, my generous mother deemed me a storyteller. In college, I fell in love with the short story all over again, but didn't really begin serious writing until graduate school.

What would you like readers to take away from this novel?
I hope they all take away something different, something relevant to their own lives, but mostly I hope they're reminded that no matter how dark or impossible something seems, hope is usually not that far away, and no matter how jaded a person may look on the outside, there is often a core of goodness underneath.

If you had to say this book was about one thing, what would it be?
Motherhood. No question. Lucy's main goal throughout the whole novel is to break away from the evil that's been holding her back, and have what she's always wanted - a family.

Who will be interested in this book?
Everyone, I hope! I've always thought of this book as a hybrid of sorts; perhaps Bridget Jones meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I think it's fast-paced plot, humor, and emotional arc will appeal to a variety of readers.

Lucy Burns is quite an exceptional character. After all, most people don't spend their days damning others to hell. Yet, even though she is dark, often unapproachable, and sometimes, downright scary, she has an unusual appeal for readers. They empathize with her, even root for her. Why do you suppose that is?
I think Lucy represents the dual nature of what it means to be human. Is she the devil? Or is she a saint? I think it's more natural thannot to have to ask both of those questions about one human being. There are gray areas in life; there are gray areas with people. One could argue that Lucy is both devilishand saint-like. Ironically, circumstance makes her both. One could also argue that most of us are a little of both. I myself am quite evil before my first cup of coffee in the morning. Conversely, I cried for ten minutes when Wilson the volleyball drifted away in Castaway. Depending on the day, we all exhibit varying degreesof human and inhuman behavior, and I think, deep down, readers identify with that in Lucy.

Sin is ever-present in this novel, yet at its heart, it is truly a morality tale. What would you say to those who see more dark in thisbook than light?
First of all, I never intended this book to be controversial in any way, nor did I intend to use it as a platform for any serious discussion about religion or justice. It is more comedic than dramatic. Having said that, laughing alone is never enough for me in a story. I prefer my stories to be three-quarters funny, and one-quarter poignant and tender. I wanted Lucy to be sassy and to exhibit sharp wit when appropariate, but it was also very important for me that, in the end, no matter how dark the journey was, she did the right thing, even if that meant making the ultimate sacrifice.

There are strands of truth in all fiction. What in this book did you "borrow" from your own life?
Well, I'm sad to say that I indeed killed my sister's cat - but I was only three or four years old and it was absolutely an accident, so don't get all judgmental yet! We had a play mailbox, just as I described in the book, and I was playing "house", pretending to mail my sister's cat Midnight to my grandma. But I was interrupted and consequently forgot that she was in there. It was horrible and gruesome. And apparently I still feel awful about it because it surfaced in this story thirty-five years later. Let's see... I did, do love music and consider it to be a religion of sorts. In the 70s, my sister and I did listen to Barry Manilow records every Sunday, thus Teddy Nightingale's role in this novel. And I do love to-do lists like Lucy. Oh, and I don't know a single woman who hasn't at one time, either wished she could eat copious amounts of fattening foods and not get fat, fantasized about sending a rude clerk to hell, or fallen in love with her writing instructor.
ISBN-13: 9781890862626
Publisher: Bancroft Press
Published: June 2009
167 pgs

Lucy and Ellen are the best of sisters. So when Ellen was hit by a truck one day, eleven-year-old Lucy was heart-broken and devastated. Ellen's chances of survival was near to zero, and in desperation Lucy wrote a letter to "To Whom It May Concern" and put it into their backyard mailbox which they would pretend it is magical and that their wishes would be answered.

After Lucy had 'posted' her request letter, Ellen did wake up from her coma the following day, but when she went back to retrieve her letter from the mailbox, she found out that her letter was gone and was replaced by another that said it is a deal and that "Whom It May Concern" would be in touch with her soon.

"To Whom It May Concern" turned out to be the devil, and it is no surprise that Lucy became a facilitator to hell after he had granted her her wish. An adult now, Lucy has the beauty and power to send wicked souls to eternal damnation. It is not that she has any control especially over the latter, since it is her 'job' but eventually she got tired of it and after meeting a blind English professor, she craves to have a normal life and to be able to have a nice relationship just like any other people.

She also found out that her long-time musical idol, Teddy Nightingale, used to be a facilitator himself and he offered her some advice what she should do to get out of her 'contract' with the devil. But of course anyone knows that every deal comes with a price and it is definitely not an easy one as Lucy has to fulfill the devil's wishes before the expiring date but the most challenging of all is, she has to wrestle with her own thoughts and the consequences she has to face no matter whatever decisions she has made.

The Sinful Life of Lucy Burns is a breezy fun read; there are times that I chuckle at some funny moments but that is not all, this story also led me into thinking about the general aspect of life and the dilemma and/or consequences we have to face during difficult situations. What I liked about Lucy is, she has not turned into a she-devil over the years given her extraordinary 'position' and that she has morals above everything. The only flaw is this story is too short and it would be better if there are more developed characters to it but this is only my opinion.

There will be a Q&A post with the author, Elizabeth Leiknes tomorrow so do look out for it!

(Many thanks to the publisher for sending this book to me for review!)

Other reviews:
(Let me know if I have missed your review.)

Mailbox Monday is hosted by Marcia from The Printed Page.

I have only received one book last week:

- The Grand Sophy by Georgette Heyer (review copy)

Sophy sets everything right for her desperate family in one of Georgette Heyer's most popular Regency romances.

When Lady Ombersley agrees to take in her young niece, no one expects Sophy, who sweeps in and immediately takes the ton by storm. Sophy discovers that her aunt's family is in desperate need of her talent for setting everything right: Ceclia is in love with a poet, Charles has tyrannical tendencies that are being aggravated by his grim fiancee, her uncle is of no use at all, and the younger children are in desperate need of some fun and freedom. By the time she's done, Sophy has commandeered Charles's horses, his household, and finally, his heart.

What books came into your house last week?

Booking Through ThursdayCheck Spelling

One of my favorite sci-fi authors (Sharon Lee) has declared June 23rd Fantasy and Science Fiction Writers Day.

As she puts it:

"So! In my Official Capacity as a writer of science fiction and fantasy, I hereby proclaim June 23 Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers Day! A day of celebration and wonder! A day for all of us readers of science fiction and fantasy to reach out and say thank you to our favorite writers. A day, perhaps, to blog about our favorite sf/f writers. A day to reflect upon how written science fiction and fantasy has changed your life."

So … what might you do on the 23rd to celebrate? Do you even read fantasy/sci-fi? Why? Why not?

I love fantasy! As for sci-fi, I rarely read them but I do love sci-fi movies (i.e. Star Wars!).

I think it is great that sci-fi author, Sharon Lee, has declared a day to honour these two genres since it seems to me that they tend to get lesser recognition as compared to other genres.

As for June 23rd, I might want to read a fantasy novel in honor of this celebration but that will depend if I have finished the two books which I am currently reading.

What about you? Do you read fantasy/sci-fi books? What would you do on June 23rd?

Dusseldorf, Germany

This is a weekly event hosted by Marcia of The Printed Page every Wednesday.

Marcia says:

I love beautiful, and interesting, cover art so every Wednesday I post my 'Cover Attraction' for the week along with a synopsis of the book. Everyone is welcome to stop by and, if they'd like, post a link to their favorite weekly book cover.

* * * * *

My find this week is The Bird Catcher by Laura Jacobs. This cover looks like a photo frame, isn't it? ISBN-13: 9780312540227
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Published: June 2009


Laura Jacobs is a writer who knows the New York woman better than anyone else. Margret Snow, a thirty-one year old artist is married to Charles, a university professor. Against the landscape of Central Park, the windows of Saks Fifth Avenue, glittering gallery openings, weekends at their Chesapeake Bay home and the couple’s lifelong hobby—bird watching, Margret’s well-ordered Manhattan life suffers a violent upheaval that pushes her beyond the boundaries of her hobby to make her an overnight art world sensation. Just as she’s taken flight, Margret has fame ripped from her in this novel about a remarkable woman who is as rare and special as the birds that fill the skies above her.

* * * * *

To find out more or participate, go to The Printed Page every Wednesday.

ISBN-13: 9780486295558
Publisher: Dover Publications
Published: April 1997
224 pgs

Persuasion is the third Austen's book I read, after Pride and Prejudice and Northanger Abbey and I wish I had read all her completed works earlier because they are such a delightful read.

In Persuasion, our heroine is a twenty-seven year old Anne Elliot and I have to say she is the sweetest heroine I have read among Austen's heroines I had read so far. Oh, she is equally charming as compared to the other heroines, but unlike the others I feel she is too good as compared to the others. She is always putting other people's needs before her, which I feel is a great quality but not when it concerns her happiness. You see, she has a fancy with Frederick Wentworth, a naval officer eight years before the story begins, but regrettably she has to break off the relationship because her father and Lady Russell, a family friend think he is not worthy of her at that time.

Though saddened by the breakup, Anne moved on with her life although the thought of Frederick strikes her mind once in a while. Later, when Frederick returns being a rich and successful captain, they crosses path once again but this time, Anne's family is having financial problems and she has to seek tenancy in Kellynch Hall.

There is nothing more I want to say about this book as this story, after all it is a romance story between Anne and Frederick and Austen always end her stories with a happy ending. You will have to read it yourself to find out how Anne get reunited with Frederick again, for I do not want to spoil it for you. However, I can say Anne is a likeable character. She may not be as opinionated as Elizabeth Bennet in P&P, but she has her own strengths and I respect her for it. I liked how she treats things positively, and she is always helping her family members even though their attitude towards her sometimes put me off. Others characters such as Sir Walter Elliot (Anne's father) and Lady Russell are equally engaging too.

All in all, Persuasion is an enjoyable read. I adore Austen's writing style; her books are filled with humour and intelligence. In fact, I would say this is my other favourite Austen's book besides P&P.

Have you read all the books by Jane Austen? Which one is your favourite?

Other reviews:
(Please let me know if I have missed yours.)

Teaser Tuesdays

TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:

  • Grab your current read.
  • Let the book fall open to a random page.
  • Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
  • You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
  • Please avoid spoilers!
Here's my teaser for today:

In Silver Falls, Washington, it was either raining, about to rain or just had finished raining. Even on an otherwise still night you could hear the rush of the thundering falls up on Silver Mountain, the roar of the water leaching into your brain until you felt as if you were drowning.

(Pg 13, Silver Falls by Anne Stuart)


I am happy to say that I have completed The 2009 Pub Challenge which is hosted by Michelle from 1MoreChapter. The rules are to read a minimum of 9 books which are published in 2009, with the exception of children's/YA titles.

Here are the books I read:

  • Bloody Good by Georgia Evans

  • Skin by Mo Hayder

  • The Accidental Bestseller by Wendy Wax

  • Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford

  • Sonata for Miriam by Linda Olsson

  • Godmother by Carolyn Turgeon

  • The Lost Hours by Karen White

  • The School of Essential Ingredients by Erica Bauermeister

  • The Piano Teacher by Janice Y.K. Lee

    1. Iliana from Bookgirl's Nightstand passed on the Literary Blogger Award to me and I cannot thank her enough. Iliana is one of my favourite blogger friends and if you have not visited her blog, you should!

      And don't you think the button is lovely? I love it!
      Thank you, Iliana!

      Musing Mondays

      Today’s MUSING MONDAYS post is about award winning books…

      Do you feel compelled to read prize-winning (Giller/Booker/Pulitzer etc) books? Why, or why not? Is there, perhaps, one particular award that you favour? (question courtesy of MizB)

      I don't think 'compelled' is the right word to describe why I want to read prize-winning books. Any story that is well written and meaningful will attract me, whether or not if they are prize-winning or not but of course I will be intrigued by the latter and I will most likely to pick it up and find out more about the story. However, that does not mean I will read every prize-winning books, after all reading is a subjective matter and like any other books, I will be selective and only choose the title that I want to read. And what award it is does not matter to me.

      What about you? Do you read prize-winning books?


      Booking Through ThursdayCheck Spelling

      There are certain types of books that I more or less assume all readers read. (Novels, for example.)

      But then there are books that only YOU read. Instructional manuals for fly-fishing. How-to books for spinning yarn. How to cook the perfect souffle. Rebuilding car engines in three easy steps. Dog training for dummies. Rewiring your house without electrocuting yourself. Tips on how to build a NASCAR course in your backyard. Stuff like that.

      What niche books do YOU read?

      This is another fun question this week.

      Besides fictions, I also read manuals on writing, card making and drawing but that is rare as compared to the past. I suppose that is due to the time constraint since I don't find much time indulging in these hobbies anymore, except writing because I view blogging as another form of writing to me.

      Lately, I picked up a book on tropical salads because I like eating them and I thought it would be interesting to come up with various forms of salads with different types of dressings. My favourites are Singapore-style Rojak and Thai Green Mango Salad.

      What about you? What niche books do you read?

      To all my friends who had previously left me a note:
      Thank you so much for your concern! I am feeling so much better today! :-)

      ISBN-13: 9780758234810
      Publisher: Kensington Publishing Corporation
      Published: June 2009
      314 pgs

      Bloody Good is the first novel in Georgia Evan's WWII trilogy of life, death, love, munitions and what else - enemy vampires! Aside from these, English folklore and other mythic 'Others' also come alive in this sparkling debut and I am sure this will appeal to many historical and paranomal fans alike.

      Dr. Alice Doyle is the only lady doctor in the village of Brytewood along the English countryside. She considers herself among the most logical of the locals, many of whom treat superstition as fact and folk tales as reality. She is the last person to believe in the supernatural, so when a mysterious injured stranger's improbable overnight recovery is immediately followed by his disappearance, she did not find anything amiss until a farmer is found mysteriously dead and drained of blood.

      For the first time in her life, she felt threatened not only for herself and the village of Brytewood, but for her country as well as a war is going on between Great Britain and Germany. Peter Watson, a handsome conscientious objector is assigned to assist her, but she does not have a good impression on him initially, for she thinks his escapade from the war is due to his cowardice but of course he has his reasons. But Alice's opinion on him changes after an incident, and slowly they fell in love with each other.

      But no matter how much in love they are, they have to be discreet for they would not want invite gossip and moreover, they have other important issues in mind, such as the invasion of vampires, who are believed to be the agents of Germany as they plan to spy and wreck havoc in Brytewood.

      Now Alice needs to get any assistance as she can, even Helen Burrows, her 93-year-old maternal grandmother's advice counts as she claimed to be a Devonshire Pixie, which among other things means she is fast to the point of invisibility and can move things with her mind. And Home Guard's Sergeant Howell Pendragon who is considered an 'Others' and happens to be a shapeshifting dragon.

      The battle between the good and the evil begins, and Alice has to accept and comes to terms with her own Pixie powers and fight for her loved ones and her country, together with the help from the 'Others' who comes in various shapeshifting forms.

      What can I say? I really enjoyed reading Bloody Good! Being a paranormal fan, I love reading anything about vampires or any other shapeshifting characters but Bloody Good is very different from what I read because it mixes vampires, folklore and historical which I find to be very refreshing and original. There are also mention of fairies but I do not want to elaborate further because their identities and agenda are still being unclear.

      All the characters in Bloody Good are engaging; I especially liked Alice, Helen, Peter and Howell Pendragon because they are all brave people. But I have to admit I was quite annoyed with Alice's prejudice against Peter initially, though I understand her doing so because most of the times first impression makes a lasting impression but I was glad her opinion on him changed after an incident. I think Helen and Howell made a fine couple, although they are not romantically linked and related. As for Peter, I just liked the way he is - simple and yes, a great hero in my opinion. His love for Alice is enough to justify my thoughts on him.

      The story ends with a cliffhanger and I cannot wait to dive into the next installment. Let's just hope the next novel is as thrilling and entertaining as this one.

      Finally, I want to thank Joan Schulhafer for sending this book to me for review!
      Koln, Germany

      Happy Wednesday, everyone! I will skip the post for Cover Attraction this week. I am currently on sick leave so I apologize if I am slow in visiting and commenting on your blogs! Best wishes!

      Teaser Tuesdays

      TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:

      • Grab your current read.
      • Let the book fall open to a random page.
      • Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
      • You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
      • Please avoid spoilers!
      Here's my teaser for today:

      "This is the woman I want," said he. "Something a little inferior I shall of course put up with, but it must not be much. If I am a fool, I shall be a fool indeed, for I have thought on the subject more than most men."

      (Pg 45, Persuasion by Jane Austen)

      ISBN-13: 9781595141712
      Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
      Published: October 2007
      288 pgs

      I do not have the intention of reading this book so soon. You see, I have the habit of getting new books and adding them onto the rest of my TBR pile, after all I need to catch up on the rest of the books, considering they have been on my shelves for quite some time. I told myself I would just close the book after sneaking a peek at a few pages and no more, but in fact I just did the opposite - I kept on reading, and reading until I finished reading a chapter, then another until I told myself I just have to read this book! And I have only one reason for this: Thirteen Reasons Why is an intriguing and a very thought-provoking book.

      When Clay Jensen returns home from school one day, he finds a mysterious package addressing to him with no return address. Intrigued, he torn open the package and found some cassette tapes recorded by Hannah Baker, a former classmate who had committed suicide two weeks ago. Not knowing why he received the set of tapes, he played the first tape and was shocked to hear Hannah stated her thirteen reasons why she decided to end her life. But the most shocking of all is, he finds he is one of them. So when he listens to the tape, he soon finds out the reason why he (as well as some of the other classmates) made it onto Hannah's list and what they have done (or not done) as a cause of her suicide.

      Thirteen Reasons Why is definitely not an easy read to me, because it deals with self-esteem and suicide. The story is narrated in first person through Clay's POV, but it alternates between Clay and Hannah as he plays her tapes (her narratives are in italics). Besides intrigued by the premise and the format of the story, I was very interested to know out what had pushed Hannah to the limits and how does Clay plays a part in it?

      There are a few reasons why I liked Thirteen Reasons Why. Besides reading like a good mystery, I think this story has touched on some important issues that all of us could not ignore - 'low self-esteem', 'peer pressure' and 'suicide'. Suicide is a serious matter and one which has to be dealt with sensitivity. I think the author has done a great job in writing this story, and I feel the best thing about this book is that it helps teenagers to see and understand the circumstances behind everything. For example, how a remark would cause hurt and have an impact on another person.

      I think Hannah did struggle before her decision of ending her life and that she needs love and support from her family and friends, but unfortunately none is there for her. Clay clearly cares a lot about her but he just have no clue what she is thinking. In other words, they lack communications.

      I think it is great that this story covers some important lessons without being preachy about it. I look forward to reading more by this author in the near future.

      Other reviews:
      A Striped Armchair
      Becky's Book Reviews
      Books. Lists. Life.
      Booking Mama
      Bold. Blue. Adventure.
      Debbie’s World of Books
      Fizzy Thoughts
      Hey Lady! Whatcha Readin'?
      Kristina’s Favorites
      Medieval bookworm
      My Friend Amy
      My Own Little Reading Room
      Once Upon a Bookshelf
      Out of the Blue
      S. Krishna’s Books
      So Many Books, So Little Time
      The hidden Side of a Leaf
      The Sleepy Reader
      The Story Siren
      This Book Is For You
      Reading and Ruminations
      Ready When You Are, C. B.
      Reviewer X
      Write for a Reader
      (Let me know if I have missed yours.)


      Mailbox Monday is hosted by Marcia from The Printed Page.

      These are what I received in my mailbox last week:

      1) Rape: A Love Story by Joyce Carol Oates (I have to get this after reading Trish's review!)

      2) Burnt Shadows by Kamila Shamsie (I simply love the cover. Plus, the blurb sounds good to me.)

      3) The Moment Between by Nicole Baart (After reading Dar's review, there is no way I will want to ignore this book!)

      So what books came into your house last week?


      Musing Mondays

      Today’s MUSING MONDAYS post is about reading time…

      Do you have a set reading time (before bed, perhaps)? Do you read more at night or during the day? Is there a day of the week, perhaps, that you set aside to catch up on reading?

      I don't have any specific rules when it comes to reading. I read whenever I have the time. I tend to read more during the day (I think I spend most of my reading time during the commute). A friend ever asked me why don't I make use of that time to close my eyes and rest my mind (as I notice most of the commuters do anyway), but I told her that it is my best time to catch up on my reading. Why is that so? Besides making full use of my time, another thing is that no one will interrupt my reading. However, that does not mean I don't enjoy reading at home, I do. I have two young children at home so reading with them around can be a little challenging to me, but then I would rather devote my attention to them unless I have some time to myself (i.e. when they are taking a nap or when my husband helps to look after them etc).

      Sometimes, I will also read during lunch hours when I don't have any lunch appointments with my co-workers. This is another great moment to catch up on my reading, but the time passes too quickly.

      What about you? Do you read more during the day or at night? Do you have any specific reading time?


      Booking Through ThursdayCheck Spelling

      I saw this over at Shelley’s, and thought it sounded like a great question for all of you:

      “This can be a quick one. Don’t take too long to think about it. Fifteen books you’ve read that will always stick with you. First fifteen you can recall in no more than 15 minutes.”

      Isn't this week's question fun? So here we go, fifteen books that will always stick with me (and doing no more than 15 minutes):

      • My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult
      • Tokyo (aka The Devil of Nanking) by Mo Hayder
      • In the Woods by Tana French
      • The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
      • Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
      • The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield
      • Out by Natsuo Kirino
      • Atonement by Ian McEwan
      • The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
      • Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
      • Black Ice by Anne Stuart
      • The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory
      • The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale
      • The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
      • The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

      So which fifteen books that will always stick with you? Don't forget, you have only 15 minutes to do so.

      Hamburg, Germany
      This is a weekly event hosted by Marcia of The Printed Page every Wednesday.

      Marcia says:

      I love beautiful, and interesting, cover art so every Wednesday I post my 'Cover Attraction' for the week along with a synopsis of the book. Everyone is welcome to stop by and, if they'd like, post a link to their favorite weekly book cover.

      * * * * *

      My find this week is a YA novel, Sisters in Sanity by Gayle Forman. What does that say about me? I love flowers! Another thing is, I love YA novels!

      ISBN-13: 9780060887490
      Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
      Published: April 2009


      "Where are they taking me?"

      "It's for your own good, Brit," Dad said.

      I was shoved into a small, stuffy room, and the door was locked behind me.

      I waited for my dad to realize he'd made a terrible mistake and come get me.

      But he didn't.

      For sixteen-year-old Brit Hemphill, it's hard to know who she can trust. Convinced she's out of control, her father has sentenced her to Red Rock: a center for supposedly rebellious teens, where the therapy consists of name-calling and the girls who get privileges are the ones who rat out their peers.

      But then Brit meets V, Bebe, Martha, and Cassie—four girls who keep her from going over the edge. Together, they'll hold on to their sanity and their sisterhood despite the bleak Red Rock reality.

      * * * * *

      To find out more or participate, go to The Printed Page every Wednesday.

      Today, I have the pleasure of featuring Norm Applegate and his new book, Blood Bar (a vampire tale) as part of the Pump Up Your Book Promotion Book Tour. Many thanks to Tracee for giving me the opportunity to be part of the book tour!

      Below is a short interview with Norm Applegate:

      1. Where are you from and how did you get into writing?
      Lately not sure, and yet I can definitely say born in Glasgow Scotland, raised in Toronto, and have been living in Florida for the last twenty-eight years. I have traveled steadily for awhile, 2 million miles on Delta, with visits to Australia, New Zealand, London, Paris (My favorite) and this year Rome, oh yeah, Alaska, Hawaii and just about every city in Canada and the USA. I was a hypnotist and did the traveling listen to my voice mesmerizing road show through most of these countries.

      2. When and why did you begin writing?
      Always wanted to write a book, didn’t know how, thought it was beyond my capabilities, but while traveling through New Zealand it started. The hypnosis career changed my life, and realizing nothing is impossible, began writing short notes, tales, and just life experiences to my wife back in the States.

      3. When did you first consider yourself a writer?
      That moment was when a few readers, strangers actually, people I had never met, sent me emails, or talked to me about something I wrote. The book was Into the Basement, abduction, torture, murder, the usual romantic stuff that makes you squeeze your thighs tight, warms your face, and blush sinfully. It surprised me, thrilled me to know people liked what I liked...I wasn’t alone from that point forward, my dark side had an outlet, freedom.

      4. What you think about the trend of vampire books comparing the past to today? (By Melody)
      It’s what is popular that’s changed, I mean if you go back to the Anne Rice novels, Interview with a Vampire, it’s a serious, adult suspense thriller. Other books from that time A Delicate Discipline, were about the horror, and the cold dark sinister evil, but we found them captivating.

      Today with True Blood on TV, Twilight, and the Sookie Stackhouse series, it’s a young adult audience looking for romance, and they have found it in vampires. Twilight, I’ve read, the writing is excellent, Stephenie Meyer has a style that pulls you in. But I found myself waiting for the essence of the vampire, you know the one that we grew up with. I’m afraid we have made this horror genre boring, in fact it’s not even horror any more it’s YA romance.

      My novel, Blood Bar, A Vampire Tale, is erotic, violent and an adventure story.

      Let me share the synopsis for Blood Bar:

      Vampires don’t exist...yet, on the brownstone back alley side streets of New York, a vampire dies. Desperate, his lover turns to Kim Bennett, author Norm Applegate’s quintessential heroine whose passion for S&M led to celebrity status as a hell-and-back murder mystery sleuth who’s been there, done that, and then some. This time, Kim finds herself caught between a secret vampire society’s attempts to locate The Black Testament (a sacred document written by Jack the Ripper), the modern-day vampire hunters bent on their destruction, and a white knuckled journey of self-discovery that catapults her into the bowels of hell and the arms of the ultimate vampire.......courtesy of The Haven, New York’s ultimate Blood Bar.

      5. What are your current projects?
      Just finished re-editing Into the Basement, was never happy with what my previous publisher did to it. Next is the screenplay to Basement, written by Nicholas Grabowsky and myself, we have a producer/distributer interested, and the movie is cast with Courtney Gains, then my next novel in the Kim Bennett series that I’m tentatively calling Black Sun Rising, is another vampire tale. You can go to to read more about the cast, director J.L. Botelho, and see his trailer for Into the’s wicked, prepare yourself, you don’t want little kids watching this, seriously don’t let your kids see this.


      I want to thank Norm Applegate for taking the time in answering the questions.

      Please click here (or the image below) to read an excerpt of Blood Bar and to follow the rest of the book tour in June.

      Blood Bar Virtual Book Tour