Thursday, September 29, 2016

An Unexpected Hero (A Legacy Falls Romance) by Diana Marie DuBois #Review

An Unexpected Hero (A Legacy Falls Romance)An Unexpected Hero by Diana Marie DuBois
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is a book about a man who goes to war and comes home believing that he is less than what he was. What he's not realizing is that he came back more. More because he now has life experiences that enable him to understand things most others what it's like for an abused pup to be down a limb.

I really liked Jackson a lot. I thought he was honorable and I was rooting for him to find his place in the world again and for him to see that he came home different but not less.

The book contains a little bit of an introduction to voodoo.

This is a clean romance.

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Sunday, September 25, 2016

Dear Diary 09.25.16 #ColdCoffee #Sheerio #YouMatter

This morning I woke up with Ed Sheeran's Cold Coffee song in my head. It is a song that was chosen for the characters Matt and Willa in T. S. Joyce's Gray Back Bad Bear book.

Ed doesn't have any notes about that particular song in his ed sheeran a visual journey book but it is from an EP called Songs I Wrote with Amy

I am going to be switching back to 1st shift from 3rd and I think coffee and sleep must be heavy on my mind. BUT...must be done with all the author signings coming up. Naughty Nashville Author Event is just 18 days away. It has felt like forever until it comes and now it's here!

Life is good. Life. Is. Good. No matter how hard it may be right now, and it is hard...I didn't say "life is easy," it is still "good." Living, breathing...being here. You matter. May your day surprise you with something unexpected and wonderful.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Dear Diary 09.24.16 #GorillaMindset

I was listening to Mike Cernovich's "Gorilla Mindset" before bed and I firmly believe that what you last listen to/focus on/talk about has a lot to do with how you wake up. My first thoughts this morning (afternoon) when I woke up was, "Oh, shit." Why? My sleep gets cut by 2 hours on a normal Saturday due to Charlie's schedule but he lost another hour before we went to bed because he stayed an hour past his normal time so down another hour.

BUT. My second thought this morning was, "OK. How do I reframe this "problem" so that I can have a productive day?" I accepted the situation as it is and made a decision to face it with grace and excitement. No point in griping about what cannot be changed. 

Third thought was, "Coffee."

So, I started checking Facebook messages, hit the play button on my Dragon Playlist, and started off the day with Rich Mullins' "Ready for the Storm."

Hope y'all's day is blessed.

Ready For The Storm

Music and Lyrics by Dougie MacLean
Published by Limetree Arts and Music (MCPS and PRS UK)
The waves crash in and the tide tide pulls out
It's an angry sea but there is no doubt
That the lighthouse will keep shining out
To warn the lonely sailor
And the lightning strikes and the wind cuts cold
Through the sailor's bones to the sailor's soul
Till there's nothing left that he can hold
Except the rolling ocean
But I am ready for the storm, yes sir ready
I am ready for the storm, I'm ready for the storm
Oh give me mercy for my dreams
Cause every confrontation
Seems to tell me what it really means
To be this lonely sailor
But when the sky begins to clear
And the sun it melts away my fear
I'll cry a silent weary tear
For those that need to love me
Distance it is no real friend
And time will take its time
And you will find that in the end
It brings you me, the lonely sailor
And when you take me by your side
You love me warm, you love me
And I should have realized
I had no reason to be frightened

Nathan Hainline Photos Arrived Today!

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Saved by a Soldier by Alison Mello #4StarReview

Saved by a Soldier (Love Conquers Life, #1)Saved by a Soldier by Alison Mello
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Saved by a Soldier deals with two incredibly important issues: soldiers coming home from war with PTSD and domestic abuse. Alison does a fabulous job of addressing the seriousness of the issues while still exploring the fun of a new and exciting romance.

I love Patty. Why? She refuses to play victim. She is completely unwilling to give up her own vision of what her life should be to placate those around her.

I love Carter. Why? He knows he has demons that need slaying and he isn't making excuses about it. Nor is he letting it stop him from going after a new life with Patty.

I am looking forward to reading the rest of their story in book #2.

I received an ARC for an honest review.

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Lay It Down: Bastards MC by Carina Adams #5StarReview

Lay It Down: Bastards MC Series Boxed SetLay It Down: Bastards MC Series Boxed Set by Carina Adams
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I read this book on a quick run through because I'm a spoilers kind of reader and I wanted to know how it ended.

Then I went back and read it again today, slowly, to really enjoy this story.

It's one of the few romance/relationship novels where I felt like everyone acted like they should and where even though there was drama, I didn't see any of the characters creating drama for the sake of drama except for Taylor, Matty's ex-fiancee. And out of all the characters in the book, she is the only one I still couldn't stand at the end. I'd even forgiven Joes' ex-husband "douchenozzle Will" by the time it was finished.

I got it through Kindle Unlimited but I'll be buying it for keeps because I know I'll be reading it again.

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Target: Unwanted Soldiers Book 1 by Aden Lowe #5StarReview

Target: A Military Romance (Unwanted Soldiers Book 1)Target: A Military Romance by Aden Lowe
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was a hard read for me because of the subject matter. Domestic abuse has cost me quite a few friendships over the years because I tend to call it like I see it and I do not ignore or look the other way when I see it.

My personal issues aside, let's talk about the book.

This is a story about a small town girl named Lauren with big dreams and how her big heart is used against her by evil people. And it is a story about Trick, a man on the fringes of society, through no choice of his own, trying to find a life worth living.

Trick is hired to rescue Lauren from her powerful fiance, a Senator running for President. It's not his regular gig, but he finds that cannot walk away from her.

One of the hallmarks of a good book, for me, is how hard I have to fight to read the end right now . I had to fight HARD on this one. I was really glad I waited, though, because I got a surprise ending that made me really happy.

I am looking forward to more stories from the Unwanteds because I want to know what happens to Flag and X-Man, too.

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Blind Wolf Bluff: Vanguard Elite Book 3 by Annie Nicholas #5StarReview

Blind Wolf Bluff: Shifter Romance (Vanguard Elite Book 3)Blind Wolf Bluff: Shifter Romance by Annie Nicholas
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A blind shifter? I was intrigued!

Blain is a blind werewolf who was born a blind human. He paid to be turned in hopes that it would cure his blindness not knowing that birth defects were not curable. Miraculously, he survived the change even though the werewolf who changed him would have preferred Blain had died. Blain leaves that group to train in a program that will train him to be a stronger werewolf and in the process gets sent to help out with a murder case in Chicago.

Sonya is an FBI agent on a mission to catch a killer and she needs a break. Blain's arrival could provide that but it's obvious from the start that there is more than the case between them.

I love books set in Chicago and that always automatically gives it bonus points in my book even when the city doesn't get showcased much.

The characters were good. I thought both leads were well written with the right amount of strengths and vulnerabilities. I even liked all the supporting characters which is unusual...generally I find one I take issue with but that didn't happen this time.

The story was paces well. It didn't drag and it didn't wrap up at warp speed. Nicely balanced.

I loved the ending because I wasn't expecting it. And I don't get surprised much like that.

This book is part of the Kindle Unlimited program and definitely worth the time. I'm looking forward to reading the rest of the series.

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Crow by A. Zavarelli #5StarReview

Crow (Boston Underworld, #1)Crow by A. Zavarelli
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

From the book: I'm still too infused with relief to understand what's really happening here. But when Lachlan pulls me close and starts peppering my face with kisses, it dawns on me soon enough. This is the moment I realize our traumas never really go away. They live inside of us, in the deepest darkest pits of our own tiny hells. Cocked and loaded, waiting for someone to come along and pull the trigger. Lachlan is pulling that trigger.

And yet I still tagged it a romance.

Mackenzie is on a mission to find the one person in her life who means something to her even if it means going up against powerful crime boss Lachlan Crow.

Lachlan Crow is on a mission, too. Find out who killed his grandfather, secure the family business by linking up with the Russians via an arranged marriage, and take his place at the successor to the leader of his organization. Or he was until Mackenzie fought her way, literally, into his life and turned it around. All of a sudden, he is no longer sure the thing he has wanted more than anything in the world is the real prize.

He knows she is up to something and he won't stop until he knows what it is. She knows he can end her life with a word but she won't stop until she has the answers she came for.

Queuing up the rest of the series and purchasing the paperback.

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A Mate's Denial by P. Jameson #5StarReview

A Mate's Denial (Ozark Mountain Shifters, #1)A Mate's Denial by P. Jameson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I love this book. It was a great introduction to shifter books for me; the first one I read. I love Trager's and Kerrigan's story. I love how much he loves her. I love his devotion to her and his devotion to getting her to see how beautiful she is just as she is.

Dialogue has some really funny moments that will make you laugh out loud.

Sex is steamy....really steamy.

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Wednesday, September 21, 2016

09.21.16 Ed Sheeran - Listening to Lyrics

Continuing my read through of ed sheeran a visual journey.

p. 27 - "If you really listen to lyrics, you learn so much. One of my favourite lyrics ever is from 'North Country Blues,' a Bob Dylan song on The Times They Are A-Changin'  album. It's about a girl who grows up in a mining town. Her dad dies in the mine. Her brother dies in the mine. Then she marries a miner who b*****s off, leaving her with a bunch of kids and no money. Towards the end, the lyric goes, 'And the sad, silent song made the hour twice as long/As I waited for the sun to go sinking.' It's brilliant writing."

I admire anyone who can actually listen to a complete Bob Dylan song. I get that the man is a lyrical genius but his voice is like nails on a chalkboard for me.

But, I wanted to check out the lyrics for this song and I agree with Ed that the writing is brilliant. What is sad is how this story has played out in towns across America over and over again for the past 50 years.

I did listen to it and it "feels" like Firefly. 

Come gather 'round friends and I'll tell you a tale
Of when the red iron pits ran a-plenty
But the cardboard-filled windows and old men on the benches
Tell you now that the whole town is empty
In the north end of town my own children are grown
But I was raised on the other
In the wee hours of youth my mother took sick
And I was brought up by my brother
The iron ore poured as the years passed the door
The drag lines an' the shovels they was a-humming
'Till one day my brother failed to come home
The same as my father before him
Well, a long winter's wait from the window I watched
My friends they couldn't have been kinder
And my schooling was cut as I quit in the spring
To marry John Thomas, a miner
Oh, the years passed again, and the giving was good
With the lunch bucket filled every season
What with three babies born, the work was cut down
To a half a day's shift with no reason
Then the shaft was soon shut, and more work was cut
And the fire in the air, it felt frozen
'Till a man come to speak, and he said in one week
That number eleven was closing
They complained in the East, they are paying too high
They say that your ore ain't worth digging
That it's much cheaper down in the South American towns
Where the miners work almost for nothing
So the mining gates locked, and the red iron rotted
And the room smelled heavy from drinking
Where the sad, silent song made the hour twice as long
As I waited for the sun to go sinking
I lived by the window as he talked to himself
This silence of tongues it was building
'Till one morning's wake, the bed it was bare
And I was left alone with three children
The summer is gone, the ground's turning cold
The stores one by one they're all folding
My children will go as soon as they grow
Well, there ain't nothing here now to hold them
Written by Bob Dylan • Copyright © Bob Dylan Music Co.

09.21.16 Decisions

So, I've been toying with this blog idea and that blog idea and what a blog ought to be and blah blah blah. And I don't think I fit any of the preconceived ideas of what a blog is or isn't.

My other blog, Trailer Park Book Club, is not really a "book blog." It's more a fan site and I like it like that. It sets us apart from other book blogs. What I am missing with that blog, though, is a place to share all the other stuff I want to share about. Books, music, movies...and I'm not your typical reviewer with "plan" for a well thought out review. I just want to talk about what I like and not worry about "did I cover all the bases" when I'm sharing.


Decent dialog and conversation.

So, here's what I'm up to so far today....I started coloring a new fall picture and during the 15 minutes I spent on it, I focused on what I wanted to do here, with "Life with Rox."

I also discovered that next time I'm going to test colors out next to one another somewhere besides on my coloring page. That green and light orange....just. No.

Hope y'all are having a great day. Be blessed.