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Monday, April 30, 2012

Review: About That Night by Julie James

Title: About That Night
Author: Julie James
Series: FBI/US Attorney, book 3
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Penguin Group
Format: E-book
Though Rylann Pierce tried to fight the sparks she felt for billionaire heir Kyle Rhodes the night they met, their sizzling chemistry was undeniable. But after being stood up on their first date, Rylann never expected to see him again. So when she finds herself face to face with Kyle in a courthouse nine years later, she’s stunned. More troubling to the beautiful Assistant U.S. Attorney is that she’s still wildly attracted to him. 

Just released from prison, Kyle Rhodes isn’t thrilled to be the star witness in a high-profile criminal case — but when Rylann comes knocking at his door, he finds she may be the one lawyer he can’t say no to. Still as gorgeous and sharp-tongued as ever, she lays down the law: she doesn’t mix business with pleasure. But Kyle won’t give up on something he wants — and what he wants is the one woman he’s never forgotten.”
About That Night is the third book in the FBI/US Attorney series by Julie James.

Nine years ago, when Rylann Pierce was in college she met this cute, handsome guy in a bar called Kyle Rhodes. Kyle walked her home, kissed her and invited her for dinner the following night. Next night Rylann is ready, waiting for Kyle but he didn’t show up nor did he call to cancel their date. She never saw him again but heard about him, impossible not to when Kyle is not only the son of a billionaire but a computer genius who was involved in big scandal years later.
After graduating from law school Rylann moves to San Francisco, where after years of hard work she has a job she loves and excels at, she is an Assistant U.S. Attorney. Rylann also has a stable relationship and can see wedding plans on her near future. But when her boyfriend of years blindside her with the news that he is moving to Italy with or without her all her plans come crumbling down.
Couple of months later an Assistant U.S. Attorney position opens up in Chicago; needing a change of scenery Rylann applies for it and gets the job. Rylann is happy to be back in Chicago close to her family and her best friend, Rea.
On her first day at work she is asked to replace another lawyer on a final disposition in court. The case she will be representing is U.S. Vs Kyle Rhodes aka The Twitter Terrorist.
Five months ago Kyle Rhodes’ super model girlfriend broke up with him via Twitter, minutes later she posted a video of her making out with a famous actor in a hot tub. Scorned, drunk and in a moment of rage Kyle brings down Twitter and leaves it down for two days while he’s getting wasted in Tijuana. When Kyle realizes what he did he fixes Twitter and returns to Chicago, he is ready to confront the consequences of his actions. At the airport he is arrested, soon after he is harshly prosecuted and sentenced. After serving four months in jail his sister Jordan helps the FBI with a case in exchange of Kyle’s early release (second book of this series, A Lot Like Love). The only thing left for Kyle is a court appearance to finalize the agreement and he will be a free man. What Kyle is not expecting is seeing the new Assistant U.S. Attorney, Rylann Pierce.

About that Night is one of those books you will be reading with a smile on your face, I call this kind of books “feel good books”. Julie James has done it again; she gives us another great contemporary romance.

Rylann is a smart, witty and sassy heroine. She is one of those women that plan her life to the minimum detail, she knows what she wants and what she needs to do to obtain it and works for it until she gets it. She is a career oriented woman who also dreams of having a family of her own. For her to fall in love with an ex-con is not an easy task, her career, her future is a stake if she let herself be ruled by her heart.

Kyle, omg I looooove him! (Yes, I know I’m using to many “o’s” but that’s how it sounds when I say I loooooove him.) He is sweet, caring, smart, funny, sexy as hell and… and… and… (Insert favorite adjectives in a hero in … ) Yes, he is that and more. Kyle is another one that knows what he wants and does whatever necessary to obtain it. I loved that he is rich as sin but never felt presumptuous or spoiled; he has work hard for what he has and when he made a mistake he accepted the consequences. Did I say he was dreamy and hot and … *swoon*

Kyle and Rylann relationship develops slowly, there’s an attraction from day one, something they can’t deny but still they take their time to know each other. There are many factors to take in consideration, their jobs, their lives, and their futures. Even though they tried to fight against what they were feeling the chemistry between them was too much not too succumb. That chemistry gave us scorching scenes and steamy situations.

Some of the characters we loved in previous books have cameos in this one; others have more important roles. One of those was Kyle’s sister Jordan, I loved her in her book (A Lot Like Love) and I loved her in this one. She is a great sister and a great character. I really love the dynamic of Kyle’s family and how they were there for him when he needed them, including his father, I loved how he tried to make light of the situation even though he suffered from Kyle’s actions and the consequences thereof.
Another character I loved was Rylann’s best friend Rea. I really hope to see more of her and Agent Wilkins.

With its perfect pace, its well-defined plot and its amazing and fun characters Julie James gives us with About That Night not only a great addition to a great series but a book to keep in our forever-favorite-shelf.
Once more Julie James asserts her position as one of the best Contemporary Romance writers and undoubtedly she continues as one of my top three favorite authors in this genre (if not my favorite).
I can’t recommend you enough this book and this series in general. Even though About That Night can be easily read as a stand-alone I recommend you to read previous books of this series first, they are as good, if not better than this book.

My Verdict: 4 ½ Paws

Other books in the series
About That Night

Other reviews Goodreads

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Movie Trailer: Hysteria

Hysteria is a British romantic comedy set in the Victorian era about the invention of the vibrator. The film's title refers to the once-common medical diagnosis of female hysteria.

Synopsis: "HYSTERIA, a mischievously inspired romantic comedy set in the late 19th century, is based on the surprising truth of how Mortimer Granville came up with the world's first electromechanical vibrator in the name of medical science. The film stars Academy Award nominee Maggie Gyllenhaal and Hugh Dancy, alongside Jonathan Pryce, Rupert Everett and Felicity Jones."


Movie Poster

Friday, April 27, 2012

Review: Somebody to Love by Kristan Higgins

Title: Somebody to Love
Author: Kristan Higgins
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: HQN Books
Source: Review copy from publisher
Format: E-book
“After her father loses the family fortune in an insider-trading scheme, single mom Parker Welles is faced with some hard decisions. First order of business: go to Gideon's Cove, Maine, to sell the only thing she now owns—a decrepit house in need of some serious flipping. When her father's wingman, James Cahill, asks to go with her, she's not thrilled -- even if he is fairly gorgeous and knows his way around a toolbox.

Having to fend for herself financially for the first time in her life, Parker signs on as a florist's assistant and starts to find out who she really is. Maybe James isn't the glib lawyer she always thought he was. And maybe the house isn't the only thing that needs a little TLC.”
I have mixed feelings about Somebody to Love. There were things I really loved and others not so much. One of the things I didn’t like much was the main character Parker. You know you have a problem when you don’t like the heroine in the story. It’s not that Parker was bad, or anything like that, but she felt somehow immature for a thirty-something year old woman and her reactions were or too much or too little. For example, when she learned that her father has lost everything including all her money and her son’s trust fund she doesn’t have any significant reaction. When she learns she and her five-year-old son are now homeless her reaction is: When do I have to move out? I needed more emotion from her. At the beginning I thought maybe she is in is shock and she is going to have a reaction later on, but the reaction never came. But with James Parker’s reactions were a little bit over the top. Something happened involving her son almost at the end of the book and even though what happened wasn’t James fault she was a complete bitch with him, she should have been upset with her son not with James. She apologized to James but for me the apology came too late.
Another thing I didn’t like about Parker is her hate for her own books, if she hated her books so much why did she continue writing them, that was something I couldn’t understand, it was not that she needed the money or something like that. Also her mental conversations with the characters of her books were annoying and unnecessary.

For me James saved the book; he is a gentleman, he’s selfless, caring, sweet and with many more qualities a perfect hero should have. At the same time he has a sad past that tortures him and makes him believe he is not worthy of love. He tried really hard with Parker, he loved her since the first time he saw her but somehow I couldn’t understand what was that he saw in her. At the beginning every time they were together she was condescending and infuriating. She didn’t show any kind of respect for him, calling him immature nicknames like Thing One or making degrading commentaries out of jealousy for his good relationship with her father.

The secondary characters provided some humor and some balance to the story. Some characters from other books by Mrs. Higgins are also present in this book and new characters are introduced. And here with the secondary characters I found another problem. I have read couple of books by Mrs. Higgins and come to realize she uses the same formula over and over with her supporting characters. There may be new characters but the characteristics that give them life and are supposed to make them unique are the same as other supporting characters from previous books. It’s almost as if Mr. Higgins recycle them giving them a new name and tweaking them a bit to make them feel new but failing in the intent, in this I’m also including the ever present dog of her stories.

Despite my problems with parker and the predictability of the plot I can say I enjoyed Somebody to Love, as with previous book of Mrs. Higgins the writing is good and entertaining. Somebody to Love is an easy, quick and fun read, perfect for a beach read or for a gloomy afternoon.

My Verdict: 3 ½ Paws

Other reviews Goodreads

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Covers of the World: Glass Houses by Rachel Caine

Today in Covers of the World we have Glass HousesGlass Houses is the first book in The Morganville Vampires series by Rachel Caine. 

1. From left to right: English US edition, English UK edition and German edition.

2. From left to right: Bulgarian edition, Italian edition and Czech edition.

3. From left to right: French edition, Polish edition and Romanian edition.

4. From left to right: Spanish edition, Turkish edition and Swedish edition.

From these covers the I really like the art use in UK English, Bulgarian and Italian editions. My favorite of the three is the Bulgarian edition, if you pay attention you'll see a slightly difference in the colors. The Romanian edition is not bad, I kind of like it too.
The ones I like the least are the German edition and the Polish edition. The German cover is just ugly and the Polish cover looks as if made in a rush or by an unskilled graphic designer. 
One cover that caught my attention is the Swedish edition, I have seen that same art in at least two other different books. 
What do you think? Which of these covers is your favorite and least favorite covers?

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Tuesday's Hot-Hot Hottie: Matt Bomer

Today's Hot-Hot Hottie is the American actor Matt Bomer
He is best known for his leading role in the TV series White Collar and his recurring role in the TV series Chuck as Bryce Larkin.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Early Review: The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa

Title: The Immortal Rules
Author: Julie Kagawa
Series: Blood of Eden, book 1
Genre: YA Paranormal Dystopian
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Source: Review copy from publisher
Format: E-book
“In a future world, Vampires reign. Humans are blood cattle. And one girl will search for the key to save humanity.  
Allison Sekemoto survives in the Fringe, the outermost circle of a vampire city. By day, she and her crew scavenge for food. By night, any one of them could be eaten.  
Some days, all that drives Allie is her hatred of them. The vampires who keep humans as blood cattle. Until the night Allie herself is attacked—and given the ultimate choice. Die or become one of the monsters.  
Faced with her own mortality, Allie becomes what she despises most. To survive, she must learn the rules of being immortal, including the most important: go long enough without human blood, and you will go mad.  
Then Allie is forced to flee into the unknown, outside her city walls. There she joins a ragged band of humans who are seeking a legend—a possible cure to the disease that killed off most of humankind and created the rabids, the mindless creatures who threaten humans and vampires alike.  
But it isn't easy to pass for human. Especially not around Zeke, who might see past the monster inside her. And Allie soon must decide what—and who—is worth dying for.”
The Immortal Rules is the first book in the new series Blood of Eden by Julie Kagawa.

From a young age Allison “Allie” Sekemoto has hated the vampires that govern her city, New Covington.  The vampires also protect them from the mindless zombie like creatures (Rabids) that live outside the walls of the city in exchange from blood. They also provide for food for those registered.
Living as an unregistered is an everyday struggle, but Allie prefers to be a scavenger than blood cattle for the bloodsuckers.  She has created a family of her own with three other young unregistered like her. They watch out for each other and do whatever is necessary to survive. But after a rabid attack Allie is on the brink of death, even worse, she will become a rabid herself. A vampire that witnessed the attack gives her an option, he could end her pain and promise she will not become a rabid or he could make her a vampire. Facing her only options, die as a human or become a vampire. Allie chooses life, becoming one of the being she has hated all her life, a vampire.
After awakening as a vampire, Kanin her maker/sire takes the time to teach her everything she needs to know to survive; but her training comes short when they are forced to part different ways. With no other option that leave New Covington behind Allie starts her new life and her daily struggle not to become one of the monsters she despised.

If you are a follower of this blog or known me a little bit you should know I’m a big fan of Mrs Kagawa Iron Fey series. When I heard she was working in a new series, one that would be for more mature audiences I might have squee’d like a thirteen year old in a Justin Bieber concert. If I’m being honest I was expecting The Immortal Rules to be an adult book, I don’t know where I got the idea from, but I didn’t thought Blood of Eden was going to be another YA series. But when our heroine said she was seventeen I knew I had it wrong. After getting out of my shock and reading The Immortal Rules with a new perspective I started to enjoy it.

The Immortal Rules is a new take on vampires, in here they govern the cities and are the ones in power, they don’t sparkle nor are sweet and caring, they are bloodsucking monsters who see humans as a food source and that’s it. Of course as everything there is the exception to the rule and here comes our newly converted heroine, Allie and if I’m being generous I will also include her sire, Kanin in this not-so-bad-vampire category.

Since the first page we see Allie’s struggle and what she have to deal with everyday to survive. We see her strength, compassion and courage. After her transformations she is still the same Allie, but now she is dealing with new inner conflicts. She is trying to hold to her humanity and not become a monster more.

Kanin is an idealistic vampire, who believes/believed in the good of people, even though he pretends not to care he cares and deeply. I thought he was going to be Allie’s romantic interest, but I was wrong again, he is just her sire. Despite not having a very big presence in the book the parts he was in made a big impact on me, I really hope to see a lot more of him in future books.

Ezekiel “Zeke” Crosse is the one that made Allie’s dead heart beat. I don’t know how else to describe Zeke but as good, he is kind, caring, self-sacrificing and all the good qualities a perfect hero should have and maybe here is where I have a bit of a problem, he was too good for me, too perfect. I prefer my heroes to have some flaws and Zeke didn’t have any.

The world building in The Immortal Rules is superb there is no other word for it. Mrs. Kagawa creates magic with her words giving life to the story. The world she created is original, vivid and despite being a dystopian world is a very realistic one. The plot is well paced and engaging. The first part of the book felt a bit slow, but is completely normal and acceptable for a first book in a series where everything is new, where the new setting, world, characters and situations need to be introduced.

Mrs. Kagawa has done it again, she did the unexpected, she took an overused subject like vampires and gave them a new and refreshing feel. If you are a fan of Mrs. Kagawa books you are going to love The Immortal Rules, same if you love your vampires to be vampires or if you love dystopian books. I’m really looking forward to read next book of this series.

My Verdict: 4 ½ Paws

Other reviews Goodreads

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Movie Trailer: Magic Mike

Magic Mike is an upcoming comedy film starring Channing Tatum, Alex Pettyfer, Matthew McConaughey, Joe Manganiello, Matt Bomer and Cody Horn in the leading roles. 

Official description: Magic Make is a story of friendship set in the world of exotic male dancing and is inspired by (but not based on) Chan’s experiences at a Chippendales-style revue early in his career. Chan plays the main character (Mike), who mentors a young dancer (The Kid) played by Alex Pettyfer and teaches him the fine arts of partying, picking up women, and making easy money.


Movie Poster

Friday, April 20, 2012

Review: Devil's Punch by Ann Aguirre

Title: Devil’s Punch
Author: Ann Aguirre
Series: Corine Solomon, book 4
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Roc
Source: Review copy from author
Format: Paperback
“As a handler, Corine Solomon can touch any object and learn its history. Her power is a gift, but one that’s thrown her life off track. The magical inheritance she received from her mother is dangerously powerful, and Corine has managed to mark herself as a black witch by dealing with demons to solve her problems. 
Back home, Corine is trying to rebuild her pawnshop and her life with her ex Chance, despite the target on her back. But when the demons she provoked kidnap her best friend in retaliation, Corine puts everything on hold to save her. It's undoubtedly a trap, but Corine would do anything to save those she loves, even if it means sacrificing herself...”
Devil’s Punch is the fourth book in the Corine Solomon series by Ann Aguirre.

Devil’s Punch starts couple of months after the events in Shady Lady (third book). Corine is back in Mexico, she is rebuilding her pawnshop and trying to live with the consequences of her actions in Shady Lady. Chance has left everything behind and has followed Corine to Mexico; he is doing his best to win her back. Things are going well between them, Chance is opening more and slowly Corine is letting her walls down. But her peace ends when she learns that Shannon has been kidnapped by demons and was taken to Sheol (Hell). Feeling responsible for Shannon’s predicament Corine knows she needs to rescue her. Abandoning all her plans she leaves for Sheol in company of Chance.
Corine knows the demons are using Shannon as bait and she is walking into a trap, but she doesn’t care, for her best friend she is willing to do everything in her power to bring her back safely, including giving her life. But nothing could have prepared her for what she encounters in Sheol. 

I really don’t know where to start with this review, so I’m going to start with my first words after I finish reading Devil’s Punch, those words were: WOW-WOW-WOW!! I’m not kidding that was what I said when I finished it. But let me tell you something else, those words came out of my mouth after five minutes of being staring at the last sentence of the book in state of shock, I was completely speechless and I may have had some tears in my eyes.

I don’t want to give much away, let’s just say that Corine went through a very difficult and strange transformation in Sheol, she became an even more complex character and the way Mrs. Aguirre accomplished her character’s duality was masterfully done.

Chance, oh dear Chance. I have to be honest with you, I didn’t like Chance and after meeting Kel in Shady Lady I didn’t want to see Chance again but in this book he was the better and improved version of Chance, one that slowly made me like him and even cheer for him, almost to the point of forgetting a “bit” about Kel (not completely). In this book Chance gave his best for Corine and was left with an uncertain future, one that broke my heart a little bit.

I have loved Shannon since she was first introduced in this series and in this book I loved her even more. She also went through a strong transformation, she is not longer a teenager she is a woman and a very kick ass one.

Characters we loved from previous books like Kel, Chuch, Eva and Booke were conspicuous by their absence and Jesse Saldana was only present through telephone conversations.
Many new characters, good and bad were introduced; from them I felt in love with Greydust and had mixed feelings about Ninlil. New friendships were formed and betrayals were committed.

Devil’s Punch had a completely different feeling compared to previous books in the series, it felt new and refreshing; Devil’s Punch is set in an different world, a world so vivid and realistic that now, days after reading it I feel as if I went to Sheol. I just need to close my eyes to picture the streets of Xibalba, the Queen’s Palace or the different demons’ castes.

Devil’s Punch is a non-stop-action-page-turner that will have you glued to its pages. With its many twist and turns it will take you on an emotional roller coaster, one with a final stop that will leave you panting for breath and wishing for a time travel machine to take you to March 2013 to the release date of Agave Kiss, the fifth and last book in this series. The only thing left for me to say is that Mrs. Aguirre has done it again.

I can’t recommend you enough this book, this series and this author in general. I have read all of Mrs. Aguirre’s books and I can honestly tell you that all of them are amazing books.
I recommend you to read these books in order to fully experience and appreciate the magical world Mrs. Aguirre has created with her words.

My Verdict: 5 paws

Other books in this series
Blue Diablo
Hell Fire
Shady Lady
Devil’s Punch
Agave Kiss (March 2013)

Other reviews Goodreads

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Covers of the World: Twilight by Stephenie Meyer

Today in Covers of the World we have the book that started it all, Twilight (I don't like to say that out loud). 
Twilight is the first book in the Twilight Saga by Stephenie Meyer. 

1. From left to right: English US first, second and third editions.

2. From left to right: English UK first edition, English UK second edition and Arabic edition.

3. From left to right: Dutch edition, Hebrew edition and French edition.

4. From left to right: Thai edition, Russian edition and German edition.

5. From left to right: Indonesian edition, Koren edition and Norwegian edition.

6. From left to right: Chinese edition, Czech edition and Danish edition. 

Twilight has been published in at least 37 different languages with over 130 different editions. Many of those editions use the cover with the apple or an adaptation of it. 
According to Stephenie Meyer the apple on the cover represents the forbidden fruit from the Book of Genesis. It symbolizes Bella and Edward's love, which is forbidden, similar to the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, as is implied by the quote from Genesis 2:17 that is quoted at the beginning of the book. It also represents Bella's knowledge of what good and evil are, and the choice that she has in partaking of the "forbidden fruit", Edward, or choosing not to see him. Alternative covers features Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson, the actors who play Bella and Edward, in the film adaptation.

From These covers the ones I like the most are the Russian cover and the first US English edition. 
The covers I like the least are English UK first edition and the covers that have Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson on them. The UK first edition cover is just terrible, there is not other word for it and the problem I have with the other ones is that in general I don't like film/TV Series based book covers and these ones are not the exemption. 
Now is your turn, from these ones which are your favorites and least favorites book covers?

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Tuesday's Hot-Hot Hottie: Michael Fassbender

Today's Hot-Hot Hottie is the Irish-German actor Michael Fassbender. He is best know for his roles as Lt. Archie Hicox in the Inglourious Basterds film and Magneto in the superhero film X-Men: First Class.

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