Category: 2012 Challenges

Bout of Books 4.0 Read-A-Thon 05/14 to 05/20


This is a STICKY POST  Progress Report for Bout of Books Read-A-Thon.  

Hosted by bout of books

My Goals:
Complete current read, Far and Away by Meg Mitchell Moore
Start and finish 2 other books not chosen as of yet

Books To Read:
Far and Away by Meg Mitchell Moore
The Lost Years by Mary Higgins Clark
Summerland by Elin Hilderbrand

Monday  5/14
Today’s topic/question:
“What do you like best about readathons? Do you have any readathon traditions or rituals? If this is your first readathon, what do you like so far? Discuss away!”
Read-A-Thons give me the incentive to read more and not spend as much time at the computer, especially during the day.
Number of pages I’ve read today:  74 (RL had other plans for me and it wasn’t reading.
Book:  So Far Away by Meg Mitchell Moore

Tuesday  5/15
Today’s Challenge:
Physical book or eBook?  Print
Paperback or Hardcover?  Paperback  (TPB)
Reality or Make-believe?  Fiction
Adult or Young-Adult?  Adult
Dog ears or Bookmarks?  Bookmark
Breaking the spine or Barely open the book?  Barely opening the book
Tea or Coffee?  Coffee (both hot (am) and Iced (pm)
Reading in bed or On the couch?  Both
Series or Standalone?  Stand alone
Original or TV Adaptation?  Original
Defy motion sickness or Audiobooks?  ?
Author crushes or Who-was-that-guy-again?  Author crushes
Interview or Guest post?  Interview
Number of pages I’ve read today:  89  (another not so good day of reading due to not feeling well)
Book:  Finished So Far Away by Meg Mitchell Moore
Next Book:  The Lost Years by Mary Higgins Clark

Wednesday  5/16
Number of pages I’ve read today:  68 (unfortunately I can’t put in the time to read as I had planned to due to RL..Maybe Thursday will be different)
Book:   The Lost Years by Mary Higgins Clark

Thursday  5/17
Number of pages I’ve read today:  129 (a little better..RL really interfered this week)
Book:  The Lost Years by Mary Higgins Clark

Friday  5/18
Number of pages I’ve read today:  154
Book:  Finished The Lost Years by May Higgins Clark
              Started Summerland by Elin Hilderbrand

Saturday  5/19
Number of pages I’ve read today:  94
Book:  Summerland by Elin Hilderbrand

Number of pages I’ve read today:  74
Book:  Summerland by Elin Hilderbrand

Total number of pages read during Read-A-Thon:  682
Finished: So Far Away by Meg Mitchell Moore (review written)
Finished: The Lost Years by Mary Higgins Clark (review written)
1/2 Done: Summerland by Elin Hilderbrand
I didn’t make my goals but came close.  I was hoping to put in more reading time and to finish 3 books this week, but only read 2 1/2.  As usual, RL had other plans for me.  But I enjoyed participating as it did give me the incentive to get away from the computer and pick up my book.  I want to thank Bout of Books for hosting and am looking forward to the next Read-A-Thon.

Read-A-Thon 5/14-5/20

I just saw this in my Google Reader and am signing up.  Want to join me?  Here are the details:

Hosted by bout of books

 Standard info:

  • Bout of Books is a week long read-a-thon, run from 12:01am on Monday, May 14th through 11:59pm Sunday, May 20st in whatever time zone you are in.
  • Bout of Books is low pressure, meaning participants are only asked to push themselves to read more than they normally would during any given week. There is no competition between readers.
  • How much time a reader wants, and can commit, to read, tweet, or network with fellow bloggers is left to individual preference. All challenges and giveaways are optional.
  • Networking with fellow bloggers is actively encouraged, though never required. Co-hosts are there to facilitate blog hopping and interaction between participants.
  • Use Twitter to post updates throughout the read-a-thon. Everyone will be tweeting with the #boutofbooks hashtag.

My Goals are:
*Finish current read of Far and Away by Meg Mitchell Moore
*Start and hopefully finish 1-2 other books which I haven’t chosen yet

Progress (which will be a sticky post during time frame of Read-A-Thon:
*I will be tracking my progress of # of pages read daily
*List books finished
*Wrap Up post

Review Caring Lessons by Lois Hoitenga Roelofs


CARING LESSONS by Lois Hoitenga Roelofs
Published by Deep River Books
ISBN 10: 1-935265-37-7
ISBN 13: 978-1-935265-37-5
At the request of WOW Tours, a TPB was sent, at no cost to me, for my honest opinion.

  Synopsis: Lois Roelofs describes herself as a rebellious minister’s daughter, a reluctant nurse, a restless mom, and a perpetual student who eventually became a fun-loving teacher of mental health nursing. During her forty-year nursing career, she cared for patients and taught nursing students in primarily mental health and medical-surgical settings. As a caregiver, she learned the value of caring for herself and did so by changing jobs to suit her interests, going back to school more than once to feed her crave for learning, and seeking professional help when personal and family crises invaded her life.

You will be amused, saddened, and inspired as you read this intimate and introspective memoir. Plus you will learn the importance of faith, family, and friendship— whatever your profession— and come away with a new appreciation of caring for yourself as well as caring for others.
  My Thoughts and Opinion: When the “call” went out for reviewers of this memoir and after reading the synopsis, being a former RN, I signed on.   It has been many years since my days as a student nurse and working as a licensed RN, however, I can vividly recall many incidents both funny and sad, good and bad, and countless patients that touched my heart.   I had expectations that this book would be memorable stories of the author’s years during her training, patients that had touched her life and anecdotes during her years of nursing.
I could relate to the beginning of the book, where the author tells of her training, and the questioning of her career decision, to pursue a 2 year degree in Nursing.   Her clinical training rotations (working on specialty floors of hospitals) such as psych, medical/surgical brought back memories. The book then goes through her years of continuing her education whereas she receives her Bachelor’s, Master’s, and PhD and the different positions that she works in.   She shares, and you can actually feel her pride and enjoyment, about the years when she was a Nursing Instructor.   This is my opinion, and my opinion only, but maybe I started reading this book thinking it was going to take a different route than it did, and because of that assumption on my part, I was expecting  and hoping for something different and felt a bit of a let down with this read.
I received a copy of this book, at no charge to me,
in exchange for my honest review.
No items that I receive
are ever sold…they are kept by me,
or given to family and/or friends.
(2012 Challenges:  What’s In A Name, Off The Shelf, Free Reads, Where Are You, A-Z, 52 in 52, Outdo Yourself, 100+)

Aloha Friday

Hosted by An Island Life

From An Island Life:
In Hawaii, Aloha Friday is the day that we take it easy and look forward to the weekend. So I thought that on Fridays I would take it easy on posting, too. Therefore, I’ll ask a simple question for you to answer. Nothing that requires a lengthy response.
 If you’d like to participate, visit An Island Life answer the question and then post your own question on your blog and leave your link below. Don’t forget to visit the other participants! It’s a great way to make new bloggy friends!

We all enjoy eating, right?   But there is something I just don’t understand and today that is my question.

Do you enjoy eating very hot, spicy food?   If yes, isn’t your mouth in pain?   How is that enjoyable?

GR Catch-Up Read-A-Thon

This is a sticky post for Read-A-Thon progress.


Book:  The Second Time We Met by Leila Cobo
02/24  Friday  Pages Read:    127/361
*Musing–I am reading/reviewing this book for The Hachette Book Group. Once my review is posted, Brianne from Hachette has kindly offered for me to host a 3 book giveaway. For a debut novel, it is well written and holding my attention.

02/25 Saturday Pages Read:  182
                                           Subtotal:  308/361
*Musingohh so close to finishing the book but sleep won.

02/26 Sunday Pages Read:  53
                                       Subtotal:   361/361

*Musing–Finished The Second Time We Met by Leila Cobo.  Will be writing my review today and starting another book
Didn’t get much reading in.  Between doing things around the house and computer to-dos the day flew by.

Started Book The Ninth Step by Barbara Taylor Sissel
02/27 Monday Pages Read: Kindle 9%
Subtotal:  1 book/ 9% 2nd book
Musing:  Going to be hard keeping track of pages read since Kindle does it by %s, one of the negatives I have with owning a Kindle.

02/28 Tuesday Pages Read:  Kindle : another 9%
                                           Subtotal:  Kindle:  18%
Musing: not too much time spent reading.  Errands, doctor appointment (and wouldn’t you know it) I thought great, I’ll be able to get some reading done in waiting room..was taken right on time lol.  I still haven’t learned all the gadgets w/the there a way to find out page numbers instead of the % read?

02/29 Wednesday Pages Read:  0%
Musing:  Unfortunately I didn’t even open a book.  Due to RL commitments, which I knew ahead of time, I knew that I would probably not get much reading in.  

03/01 Thursday Pages Read:  32%
                                                    Total:  50%

Wrap Up:  Finished The Second Time We Met by Leila Cobo
1/2 through- The Ninth Step by Barbara Taylor Sissel

I was hoping to get at least 2 books read and started on a third during this read-a-thon, however, I also knew  when, I signed up that I had obligations that were going to interfere.   But knowing that I was participating, was an incentive to try and pick up my book as often as I could.

Thank you Stephanie from Once Upon a Chapter for hosting.

Review “Lovesick” by Spencer Seidel


LOVESICK by Spencer Seidel
Published by Publishing Works, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1-935557-20-3
At the request of Meryl L. Moss Media, an ARC TPB was sent, at no cost to me, for my honest opinion.

  Synopsis (borrowed from Amazon):   Late one night out on the Eastern Promenade Trail in Portland, Maine, the police discover an incoherent teenager sitting in a pool of blood, holding the body of his best friend and the murder weapon. The girl they both love has been missing for weeks.

The kid’s jealousy clearly drove him to murder. He says the missing girl is the love of his life. She also happens to be the girlfriend of the murder victim.

It’s an open and shut case, or so most of Portland thinks.

Dr. Lisa Boyers, forensic psychologist, receives a call from an old friend, a connection to her troubled past. Attorney Rudy Swaner wants her to interview the young killer Paul Ducharme, who is claiming he doesn’t remember the events leading up to the murder.

In her jailhouse interviews, Lisa helps Paul to recover his memories. But something about Paul’s disturbing love story shakes Lisa to the very core of her being. To understand Paul, she is forced to confront her own ugly violent secrets.

Media attention mounts. Reporters stream into Portland. All eyes turn to the psychologist who seems intent on exonerating the vicious teen killer. Soon Lisa finds herself the focus of an over-zealous reporter with a knack for digging up dirty secrets.

But the killer who has Lisa in the crosshairs already knows them all.

  My Thoughts and Opinion:   I was introduced to this author in May of 2011 with his debut novel, Dead of Wynter,  in which I had stated at the time to put this author on your radar.  So when I was approached to read his latest novel to read and review, I jumped at the chance.  There is always a bit of skepticism, I find, when the debut book is extraordinary, is the 2nd one going to be too?  Or was it a one hit wonder.

Lovesick draws you in from the first few pages.  A deep, dark psychological thriller with a cast of characters that are interwoven with each other, having their own secret demons, in which they were all trying to live a normal life.  Even those that were in positions of trying to investigate a murder of a  teenage boy, his missing girlfriend and a best friend found at the murder scene but who doesn’t remember anything.   So many parallels between those investigating the case and those that were the victims.

Engrossing!!  Spencer Seidel’s writing style transports you right into the book.  To the point that a few times, I would be reading while waiting to pick up my husband after he got out of work and I was so absorbed, that I did not see nor hear him approach the car and when he knocked on the window, I let out a scream.  Definitely a white knuckle, thriller read!!!  Even though I had figured out the “whodunit”, the details surrounding the why’s, what’s, details, and secrets of the other characters were surprising.  This was a couldn’t put down book.  Looking forward to Mr. Seidel’s  future works.

I received a copy of this book, at no charge to me,
in exchange for my honest review.
No items that I receive
are ever sold…they are kept by me,
or given to family and/or friends.

(2012 Challenges:  Romantic Suspense, ARC, Mystery/Suspense, Off The Shelf, Serial Killers, Free Reads, Where Are You?, A-Z, Merely Myster, I want More, 52 in 52, Outdo Yourself, 100+)

Another Read-A-Thon

I am excited since I have been doing pretty good this year so far with read-a-thons and I just found another one via Michelle from The True Book Addict,  thank you Michelle.   It starts today and runs until March 1st.   Here are the details if you would like to participate:

Hosted by  Stephanie at Once Upon a Chapter

Details from her site:
*Will run from 2/24 (12:01 AM) to 3/1 (11:59 PM).

*If you are a blogger, please do a post announcing your participation. If you want to do all of your updating from one post, that is completely fine by me. (You can also grab the smaller button below.)

*I will be having mini-challenges throughout the week. Two for US residents and one for my international friends!

*I can’t stress this enough: HAVE FUN with the read-a-thon! :)

*Please fill out the form to sign up!

Review The Legacy of Eden by Nelle Davy

Published by Mira
ISBN-10: 0778329550
ISBN-13: 978-0778329558
At the request of Meryl L. Moss Media, an ARC TPB was sent, at no charge to me, for my honest opinion.

   Synopsis:  An epic, sweeping tale of a dynasty rotten to the core, driven by ambition, lust – and hatred.

For generations, Aurelia was the crowning glory of more than three thousand acres of Iowa farmland and golden cornfields. The estate was a monument to matriarch Lavinia Hathaway’s dream to elevate the family name—no matter what relative or stranger she had to destroy in the process. It was a desperation that wrought the downfall of the Hathaways—and the once-prosperous farm.
Now the last inhabitant of the decaying old home has died—alone. None of the surviving members of the Hathaway family want anything to do with the farm, the land or the memories.

Especially Meredith Pincetti. Now living in New York City, for seventeen years Lavinia’s youngest grandchild has tried to forget everything about her family and her past. But with the receipt of a pleading letter, Meredith is again thrust into conflict with the legacy that destroyed her family’s -great name.

Back at Aurelia, Meredith must confront the rise and fall of the Hathaway family…and her own part in their mottled history.

My Thoughts and Opinion:  I remember reading, and some of you may too, a Woman of Substance by Barbara Taylor Bradford in 1979.  It was with that book that I sought others of the same premise.  How the role of the matriarch came to be.  Usually with ruthlessness, revenge, lack of remorse, greed, and hatred but in the end, was always alone.  Family members emotionally destroyed along the way.  Secrets kept hidden.  But memories never die.

The Legacy of Eden was just that book.  The author, Nelle Davy, in her debut book, pulled you in from the start.  Meredith, one of three grand daughters, who had tried so very hard to forget those years living at Aurelia, was located and notified that the farm was to be sold.  The writer alternates between the present and past as stories that were related to Meredith from her dieing grandmother.  The family members come to life but are products of their upbringing that at times you feel sorry for them.  I could actually feel the lack of emotions between family members.  There were hints of secrets within the family throughout the book, which one could figure out but then it still made the family what it truly was.  A figment of their own imagination.  A very engrossing saga, especially for a debut novel.

I received a copy of this book, at no charge to me,
in exchange for my honest review.
No items that I receive
are ever sold…they are kept by me,
or given to family and/or friends.
(2012 Challenges:  ARC, Off The Shelf, Just For Fun, Free Reads, Where Are You, A-Z, 52 in 52, Out Do Yourself, 100+)