Our Reviews

Most Recent Posts First - Previous Reviews are listed under the Blog Archive on the right hand side.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Meeting My Rockstars

I am such an avid romance fan. I have been reading romance since around 11 years old and I never, ever tire of it. I have always viewed authors as my rockstars! Can you imagine my delight when I found out, admittedly at a late stage, that I could meet them and have them sign my books!?! Even more delight when I got to go for the first time to a luncheon where you could actually sit at the table with them and have conversation over a meal, instead of just that few seconds in line at the signing! How fantastic.

My first time was in Huntsville, Alabama. I went over and met a friend, Tangela, at the hotel where the luncheon was being held. She and I stood in line and were so pleased when we got to sit with Linda Howard - OMG! LINDA HOWARD!! (See, I told ya, she ranks up there with Jon Bon Jovi for me. Not that I want to shag her, but you get the point!) It was so wonderful. She was nice and friendly. I met Stephanie Bond, who was the guest speaker, and several other fantastic ladies. There were gift baskets to be given away and door prizes of having your name in a book. I did not win, but in my mind, I had the best prize of being able to chat with one of my favorite authors. Tan won, she got a tote with a set of Stephaine Bond books, a Voo Doo Doll (from a new series of Stephanie's) and a vintage scarf tied to the handle. How cool was that! I ahd an absolutely fabulous time!

So now I am addicted, as you can imagine! In July, Romance Writer's of America is having their annual convention in Atlanta. Along with the convention, there was a huge author signing on one of the first days. Of course, I live near Atlanta, so I had to go. I planned on this for quite some time! My friend Lori and I trudge through downtown Hotlanta to get to our hotel and walk over to the site of the signing. We were so excited, but I do not think we could have anticipated just how much fun we were going to have. There were so many authors there that we had a hard time deciding where to go first. We met some fantastic ladies and even met a few we had never read that are now on our list of authors that we just have to read. I saw Stephanie and Linda again, and they both remembered me from Alabama, so that was nice. Just to name a few we met: Robin T. Popp, Kimberly Raye, Jane Porter (who is phenominal, btw, she is soooo funny and sweet!), Cindy Dees, Lora Leigh, J.R. Ward (who is a big favorite! Oh, those Brothers!), and the piece de resistance for us - Sherrilyn Kenyon. Sherri was fun! We found out she had connections in our area and we knew some of the smae places. She was the big draw for us and it was so fun to finally meet one of our absolutely favorite people. We left that event with briar-eating grins and hearts warmed with the good times we had.

So, when the chance came in September to attend a Dark Hunter party and attend another reader's luncheon in Atlanta, we jumped at the chance. Lori and I packed up the car and headed for Hotlanta one more time. We stayed at the hotel where the event was held, a very nice Hilton! We get to the Dark Hunter party ready for fun! Fans were dressed in everything from vamp/goth style clothes to everyday street clothes. The overall theme was black and red. We danced the night away and had so much fun.

The next day (yesterday) there was a reader's luncheon. There were about 20 authors that were in attendance, some who were new to us and some that were old favorites. I think Ms. Bond may be beginning to think I am a stalker! Here, in 6 months time, I get to meet her again for the 3rd time. We sat at her table for the lunch. She asked us all to suggest book recommendations and we talked about what we like in books, how we pick which types of books to buy, and all sorts of fun reader type stuff. After the lunch, we went into the booksigning. It was good to see all the author's again. Sherri remembered us and was so very sweet and gratious. We met some new ladies that were fun and had great stories we plan to read. Again, we left with our bags full of goodies and our hearts warmed by all the nice people we had met.

So now, I find myself anticipating the next author event. I find it so exciting and am pleased to know they are regular Janes, like the rest of us. Just amazing! They are still my rockstars and I think they always will be. The best part is that they are so appreciative of us readers and how we feel! They put these gifts together with that in mind. The baskets were awesome and show a real thoughtfulness on their part. It feels great to be a romance reader and I am so proud I could shout it from the rooftops!


Monday, September 18, 2006

Favorite things about Fall

Okay Fall is coming, even if today it feels like Summer will never leave. So I'm wondering what everyone's favorite thing about Fall is? Do you read more or less? Do you love the cooler temps and changing colors or do you prefer Summer and it's sweltering heat? Do you start preparing for Christmas now?

What about Fall is your favorite thing? What book are you eager to read this fall?


Wednesday, August 23, 2006

When is enough enough and it's time to end a series?

If you are like me, you adore series and connected stories. But when is enough enough already and it's time to end the series? Is there ever a point when a series needs to be brought to an end and the characters' stories all tied up? Or do you want it all left open and the series continuing on?

At one point I thought it was time to end the Stephanie Plum series from Janet Evanovich,then she came out with book 12 and I was hooked again. Now I want more from these characters. But does that mean that the series should run forever?

Is there a series that has been going on too long?

What series do you hope never ends?

I find I like series and as long as the author continues to write good stories I will continue to read, but I want the characters to grow and their world to expand.


Friday, August 11, 2006

books made into movies

Recently I've noticed that a number of books are being made into movies. I find this interesting on a number of levels. One does that mean that writers now have a higher chance of seeing their books on the big screen? Will this effect how books are written in any way?

I have no seen most of these new movies, like THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA. I haven't read the book either. But the few movies I've seen that where books, namely Danielle Steele's books and Linda Howard's LOVING EVANGLINE. They just lost something in the translation. So it makes me wonder how is it that in romance, women's fiction something seems to get lost,but with a Stephen King novel that doesn't happen?

Is it something in the writing or is is something about reading the stories that we all add what we want and somethings producers just don't understand that?

I'm curious if there is one book you've read recently you'd love to see made into a movie. What book and why?

Is there a book you hope they never attempt to make into a movie because you know it'll be bad?

What are your feelings on books into movies overall?


Thursday, August 10, 2006

Oh, those Alpha Males

What is it about the alpha male that drives most of us women crazy with lust!?! I love a story with a confident, assured man in it. When he gets to sensitive or too mushy, it can take away from the story for me. I don't want him to be a total hard-ass, but I do want that solid stoicism. However, recently I read a story in an anthology - that I am not willing to name right now, later I might - where the hero was set up to be perfectly alpha, but he came across as too much. Maybe he was too cocky, too bossy, just too..... something. He was hot, but overall, he just did not grab me like most of them have in the past.

I will name some of my favorite alphas if you will!

Where to start?? Oh, the Dark-Hunters. Sherrilyn Kenyon definitely knows the alpha male! Vane, the Were-Hunter, is one of my favorites. (Maybe because he likes thicker women!!) Janet Evanovich struck a cord in me with Ranger. He is too heavenly. Everyone should read the Stephanie Plum books, if just for him! I am such a babe. Sandra Hill has some great alpha cajun men, ooooweeee! Suzanne Brockmann has always done great with her Seals!! There are so many and I always wind up forgetting some. Oh, have you read Jane Porter's The Sheik's Disobedient Bride? Ohhh, Tair is soo very alpha. Karen Marie Moning is a definite pleaser with her Druids - Daegus is my man! I fell instantly in love with him in The Dark Highlander.

The storylines I like best are:
Military men
Medieval men (esp time travel!)
Bosses - oh, yeah, stereotype me, baby!
Vampires and Shape Shifters

Oh, heck, I admit, I like them all! So, tell me, which alphas do you like better?Or do you prefer a more Beta male, like in Vicki Lewis Thompson's nerd series?


Friday, June 30, 2006

July reading plans

Well since July is just about here, tomorrow, I figured I'd post about July. I have big hopes for July. I want to read some of my older TBR books, as well get in some of my newer ones. But it's gonna be a busy month. What with the RWA signing in Atlanta at the end of the month, 4th of July at the beginning and Catherine Mann has a signing close to me early in the month as well. So I'll just have to see what I can get read.

I have to wonder if anyone reads more American Revolution reads during this time of year. Does the time of year help you decide what to read? It doesn't me. Since I'm a mood reader, I read whatever fights my mood.

Happy Reading to all.


Monday, May 29, 2006

DESERT SONS by Rebecca York, Ann Voss Peterson, Patricia Rosemoor

I just finished reading Harlequin Intrigue # 838, DESERT SONS by Rebecca York, Ann Voss Peterson, and Patricia Rosemoor. It was a good read. I would have liked longer stories and more information and the aftermath of events. But then I love an epilogue that goes years into the future. Otherwise each story was good. This is the story of 3 men, Luke, Rico, and Tom. They where friends as kids then Luke was sent to jail for a crime he didn't commit and that changed all of their lives. Now their hometown is threatened by evil and they have to stop it before the women they love pay the ultimate price. It's a good story with paranormal elements, hot men, and strong women.
I would recommend this story if you like quick reads with a good story base.

Now I'm off to find something else to read, just not sure what it will be yet.


Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Summer's here and the time is right for reading in the sun

Okay so who's ready to hit the beach and lay out by the water with a cool drink and nice relaxing book to read? I know I am. I can't wait for some time at the coast to enjoy a nice relaxing day just being. Seems like during the summer I tend to look for lighter easier quicker books to read. Anything that will make me smile or laugh.

My latest read was Kimberly Raye's KISS ME ONCE, KISS ME TWICE. A really good book. Add in the Nascar touches and I was a happy camper. So what's your latest read? What book are you looking forward to this summer?


Saturday, May 06, 2006

May reading?

It's May and I'm reading away already. There are some great books being released this month. But I'm trying to challenge myself, after reading a friend's blog, where she is reading one book from her older releases out of her TBR pile. So for May I've read Virginia Farmer's A BLAST TO THE PAST. It was a good read. Can't say I've ever read about a Navy Explosives technician before. Now I need to look for other books by this author. I'm curious if anyone else is trying to weed through their older releases? Having any luck at it?

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Books you are looking forward to this summer

I was doublechecking release dates today for some of my favorite authors and looking up books to be released June, July, and August and got to wondering if anyone else has books they are dying to get for the summer? I have quite a few.

My top book is Sherrilyn Kenyon's DARK SIDE OF THE MOON
And Carly Phillips' HOT ITEM

Both come out in June and Jill Shalvis has one in June as well as Rebecca York.

Then in July I'm eager to get Cherry Adair's EDGE OF DANGER
Catherine Mann's BLAZE OF GLORY
Brenda Novak's DEAD SILENCE

and there's about 10 more I want

Then in August there's
Lori Handeland's MIDNIGHT MOON
Carly Phillips' CROSS MY HEART
Cherry Adair's EDGE OF FEAR
And Susan Sizemore's PRIMAL HEAT
Those are the main ones,but I'm sure I'll add more and that doesn't count the categorys I want. See why I have a little black book with releases for each month and what books I want or need, as well as older releases or authors to look for?
So what books are you looking forward to reading this summer? Any one book really the top book that as long as you get it, if it's great of course, you'll be happy?

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Reading and outside noise?

I'm curious of everyone. Are you a reader who must have complete silence to read and enjoy or do you prefer background noise? Doesn't matter if it's the radio or TV or the kids or whatever. Personally I can read anytime, anywhere. Doesn't matter if it's with noise or if it's quiet(although quiet with all these animals, 2 kids and a hubby is hard to come by anyway). I tend to get caught up in the book and can block out all other distractions with ease. I do it with TV or anything I'm giving my full attention to. I've heard people comment that they need to have complete and total silence in order to read. All I can think is where in the heck is there complete and total silence? Even living as far in the country as I do there is noise. The crickets, the whiperwils, the owls, the frogs, all that at night. During day you have birds of all kinds, dogs, cats, animals I don't care to name, the kids, cars, and any number of other noises going on. Especially if I am washing clothes, then the washing machine is making noise, so where do you find complete silence? I don't think I could read if it was all quiet. As it is if my kids get too quiet I know they are up to something or trying to hint something they've done, so noise is good.
But how do you all read? Do you only read at night before bed? Can you read anywhere or must you be in your favorite spot? Do you have a reading spot? Do you have noise or do you try to make it as quiet as possible? I wanna know where you read, how you read(by computer or pb), when you read, and how many distractions are around you when you read? I wanna know it all.

Friday, April 21, 2006

author signing, Sherrilyn Kenyon

Sherrilyn Kenyon, Book signing
April 19, 2006
Charlotte, NC
I had the great pleasure of going to see Sherrilyn Kenyon in Charlotte, NC on Wednesday. It's the second time I've gotten to meet Sherri in person and she is always great. She's never given off the impression she's rushed or can't take the time with you and she's always smiling and joking. The signing was still going on after the store was supposed to close at 9pm. The line to see her was LONG but everyone was patient and having a great time. I got to meet up with some friends I've made online and it was great to see them in person as well. I wish I could attend more to these author signings but rarely do they occur close enough to me without me having to stay at hotels. I'm wondering how many fans also enjoy meeting their favorite authors in person and how they feel about those meetings. Are they shocked? Did the authors live up to what they expected or where they somehow let down? I have to say I love meeting with Sherri. The first time I meet her was in 2005 at a Luncheon in Ala. Or rather the first time I meet and talked with her. I did attend RWA's signing in NYC but honestly can't remember half the authors I meet that night. It was so busy and crowded and so many authors you had to hurry to do everything and while it was a blast I have enjoyed the smaller signings so much more. I have attended one other author's signing here in NC that was for Inspirational author, Don Brown. He's a great author and it was great meeting him as well. The smaller signings seem to allow for more one on one time. I look forward to doing more and hope to make many more author signings. Sherri told jokes, took pictures with everyone, was easy going and in general an outstanding person to meet. If I didn't already adore her work, I'd certainly adore her as a person. I'd suggest to anyone if they could attend an author signing to do it. It's great fun and meeting fellow readers is an added bonus.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

trying this one

Just trying to see if this works or not.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

How about these?

I like this one better. What do you think?

testing these pics

Do we all like this photo?

books that make you think

I just recently finished Vicki Hinze's HER PERFECT LIFE. It's an April Signature Select release and is about a woman, Katie Slater, who was a pilot in the war over Iraq. During a routine mission, her plane is shot down. Her co-pilot C.D. Quade is rescued, but she is believed to have died and left there. She's actually held prisoner for 6yrs before they know she's alive and get her out. Now her life is different than it was when she left. Her husband has remarried, her kids barely remember her and call this other woman mom, her co-pilot is feeling guilty for leaving her behind and she has no idea where her life is to go. She's got to deal with what happened as a POW and at the same time deal with a life that for her never changed. She held on to the image of family and her as it was. Added to this her mom who is no longer the way she remembers her. Nothing in her life is the same, not even herself. The book says: Does Katie have the strength to grow a new life--on her own terms?.

Now this book was good, but sad and at times I wanted to hit someone over the head. I wanted to shake the US government and at times her hubby. He was a jerk and everyone kept making excuses for him. I still don't get that part. He was a self-centered a$$, end of story. Now I'm wondering if anyone else has read this and what they think about it. Did it you make you think? It certainly gave me a lot to think about and makes me wonder how the woman on the front lines would take this same event in their lives? Could they handle it? If everyone read this book, would they view 'Nam POWs and other war POWs differently than they do? I have to say if you want a book that will have you thinking long after you turn the last page this is it. It's a good book. But it's not something for the ones who can't take truth with their fiction. While nothing is ever given in the great detail I at times want, enough was told to give a clear picture of what Katie endured and how it forever will change her life.


I have discovered Anita Blake, again!

I was recently gifted with the first nine Anita Blake books by Laurell K. Hamilton. I say gifted, they were truly loaned to me. I read the first one, Guilty Pleasures, in 24 hours - big thing for me as I am doing so many other things during that time. I put off way too much to read this, but I was absorbed! See, when I read one of these out of order, I was lost and did not enjoy it, at all! I was ready to write them off completely. A good friend of mine convinced me to try again and I am so grateful! If you have not tried these, but like dark vampire stories, I highly recommend them. I am majorly crushing on Jean-Claude! This is the UK cover, but I think it fits better than anything else.

Monday, April 17, 2006

I'm Here But Don't Know How I Got Here

Hey guys, I'm here!

I hope I did this correctly! I love the look of the blog! And I know Livia prefers the other name, but I really think Five Ladies Readings is a way cool name!

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Does this look better?

Does this look better to you Thia? We need to the others to weight in.


Wednesday, April 12, 2006

The Look

Wendy, can we make the blog brighter? Can we do our own page or does it have to go up on the same page? This black and purple background is too dark and drastic for me. Am I am co-administrator or do I just tell you my thoughts? I love those pics on the side, btw - they are ones I think I have seen for the QCC and I have them both in my pics file!

Curious Thia

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Just testing

Just testing