Book Twenty Three: Love In a Nutshell

Love in a Nutshell by Janet Evanovich and Dorien Kelley

This book definitely gets a 9/10

It was funny, it was cute, it had tension, an outside antagonist, excitement, drama, mystery, and the cream of the crop, a happy ending!

Definitely one of the best RomComs I’ve read in a while. This is including the Stephanie Plum books, also by Janet Evanovich, which I still rave about. This is probably one of the few *true* RomComs I’ve read in a while.

It takes place in Michigan, where I live, and talked a lot about beer. Which is funny, because one of the main characters is really allergic to it.

I’ve said before I’ve got a thing for strong female characters, and this book doesn’t disappoint me!

Kate Appelton is a downtrodden woman. She doesn’t feel independent, strong or capable of doing anything. And it annoys her, so what does she do? She tackles project impossible. I really love her motto she uses when she starts to freak out, “You’re a big strong dog who can jump high.” I think I’m going to start using that!

I recommend this book, I was sad when it was over. I definitely had a book hangover.

Book Twenty: Elder’s Secret

Woo! I’m 20% done! I am still way behind if I want to finish on time, but I’ll catch up!

So, the book I just finished is a self-published work available only on Amazon. The Author is a friend of mine I met through a website for young writers trying to improve their skills through practice, critique, and talking to each other. I made a lot of really good friends there.

For him, it definitely did pay off. The story takes itself seriously, but not so seriously they’re afraid to crack a joke in there. Because of its genre–young adult fantasy/scifi–its not terribly original. I see footprints of Tolkien, the Harry Potter books, and the Nicholas Flamel serious by Michael Scott. These are just footprints though, the story is unique enough to be interesting. Heck, it kept me up reading half the night before I finished it. The thing that sets this book apart really is its setting. It is nothing like the settings in the other books. Honestly, I’ve never even seen another book that’s actually about Atlantis–and I work in a library.

There are a few points that I feel like I can point out without ruining the story for you.

1. His “mom”

~There’s the obvious reference with her name “Cassandra”, meaning “professor of doom”
~There is a moment early on when all the assumptions about her character just being a lazy b****h are kind of challenged. It’s a small moment, but it is there. She yells an order at Colin, and then goes back to the book she was reading. This tiny tiny bit of foreshadowing or character development–which ever you decide to take it as–really stuck with me. Mostly because it was so small and seemingly insignificant.

2. Language

~I will make no statement on the style and the language that the author uses. I’ve realized that when I like a story I ignore whether or not I like the language, in my opinion, it was very well done.

3. Sequel

~I hate waiting for sequels, so I really shouldn’t have started reading this book! It ends on a cliff, and you’re hanging on for dear life going “when does the next one come out?” And when does it come out? January. Grr

 

Well that’s all I’ve got! 20 books down, 80 to go with only 195 days left!

Book 18: Waiting for Nick

Waiting for Nick ~ Nora Roberts

I have a thing for strong female characters. And in Waiting for Nick I think Nora Roberts pulled off a really unique one. The whole book the character Freddie, a very naive girl who moves from her family home in Virginia to the family grouping in New York. I think she’s a strong character because she’s not afraid to ask for help with getting her stuff together. She’s also very intent on getting Nick, whom she’s been in love with forever.

Freddie doesn’t have that many apparent self-esteem issues. Just the average confident woman’s. It’s Nicks that put things on hold. He’s had a rough past, and it comes up to haunt him and gives a little thrill to the story. But in the end he deals with it and gets over it. Right after she points out her big issue, and she walks out/is kicked out.

She puts on her big girl panties and decides to get over him, and never honestly speak to him again as far as she could. And that’s when he decides he can’t live without her.

It’s an older book of hers, but I can’t help it, I love it! I love her style and the stories.

Book 17: The Cowboy takes a Bride

The Cowboy Takes a Bride by Lori Wilde

This book definitely goes under the “fluff” category. And it was pretty good actually! The characters reactions were probably the most realistic I’ve seen in a long time. It covered the story of a widower who had just lost his best friend, and the best friend’s estranged daughter. He’s looking to get rid of her, his admiring fan (the older sister of his late wife) is looking to get rid of her, and she’s looking to sell the property and get back to Chicago and make her life over again.

Of course, the estranged daughter and the widower get together. But it’s a rocky road, filled with things I actually believe would go through people’s minds. Not just insecurities about the other, but about themselves.

The subplot was really what impressed me though, was the subplot. The admiring fan has her own admirer. And instead of them waiting until the very end (The Edward & Lucy Steele technique from Sense and Sensibility) its actually much earlier. They even have some of their own drama, but it was their relationship that had me kicking my feet in excessive laughter.

Definitely worth the read, its not a hard one, or a long one to get through. A good just before bed book.

Book Ten: They Say, I say

My first non-fiction book of the year.¬†They Say, I say. Really isn’t as boring as a textbook. Which is essentially what it is. It’s a very short ¬†very fast read about how to argue effectively in papers!

Personally, I’ve always had trouble with it, and this book is filled with templates and well written explanations that I found really useful.

Honestly, I wouldn’t have just read this book, I like to read those “how to write” books (I recently listened to “How I write” by Janet Evanovich and Ina Yalof…which was more about getting published than writing) but this is more technical than I generally enjoy. I was assigned to read this for a class, and instead of reading the books I’d enjoy.

This is a good book in the academic sense, it was helpful and informative.

 

10 books down…90 to go!

Book 9: Sizzling Sixteen

Vincent Plum is missing!

Dun dun dun

The bonds office is so far in the red they can’t buy a stack of papers!

Dun dun dun

Vinny is caught on Stark street, pants around his ankles. Now Lucille wants nothing to do with him and even worse, her father Harry the Hammer won’t fork over the money for him.

He’s gotten into some bad deals with “Sunflower” and he is ready to do some damage if Vinnie doesn’t get him One Million three thousand dollars!

It’s up to Stephanie, Lula and Connie to raise the money, rescue Vinnie, and hide him with someone who will put up with him long enough to give him a chance to get his wife Lucille back.

A car doesn’t explode, but two buildings do.

Another satisfying Stephanie Plum novel by Janet Evanovich! Though, I’m still a fan of the earlier ones, I think I’m torn between Ten Big Ones and Eleven on Top as current favorites…But I think Four to Score may top them both…It’s hard to decide which one I like the most.

9 down, 91 to go!

The Christmas Wedding by James Patterson

The Christmas Wedding is another one of James Patterson’s books that goes along with Sam’s Letters to Jennifer and Sunday’s at Tiffany’s. This one, however, takes place around Christmas!

And honestly, speaking as a sentimentalist, this book almost made me start crying in the middle of the library. Which would have concerned people since I was listening to it on a playaway…It has all the perfect elements in a great wedding and Christmas story. Disfunction, charity, love.

This book scores a 9 out of 10 stars for me; anybody who enjoys happy stories or maybe needs a little hope and optimism, needs to read this.