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Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas! (A poem)

'Twas the night of Christmas and all through the home
Not a creature was stirring except for the garden gnome

Hubby was sitting at his desk in his cave
Painting his models for the first time in days

After cleaning up the kitchen from the dinner we threw
I settled in for a long soak in the bath that I drew

When out of the dark there arose such a clatter
I ran down to find Egg had broke the ham platter

Still Santa had done his good work for the night
And there was no Krampus to give us a fright

Still reeling from the thoughts of the books in my head
It was time to don jammies and climb into bed

But before the light dims at the end of the day
I wish you all a very Merry I wanted to say

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Christmas Deals for Otakus

I was just checking my email and got notification of some exciting sales on manga and anime I wanted to pass along to any Otakus out there.

Generally speaking, I get my manga from one source;  They ordinarily price their manga at 25% off, but they run fantastic sales for the holidays starting before Thanksgiving.

Prior to Thanksgiving, there were three waves of savings on all sorts of titles for manga, anime and live a tion as well.  Starting 12/01/14, they have had daily sales.  Every day there are about 80 items up fort pretty deep discounts.

It looks like most of the items are not newer titles, but if you are looking to back fill on manga titles are DVD/Blu Rays, now is your chance!

There a new wave every day.  There will be new titles for three more days, but the items from prior days would still be discounted while supplies last.

So check it out at!

Monday, December 8, 2014

Stacking the Shelves - December 7, 2014

Well, Christmas is fast approaching and I have spent the past week cyber shopping and decorating for Christmas.  It's been a rough week.  I couldn't resist a little CyberMonday Kindle book browsing, though.  I picked up a few eBooks, but didn't get carried away.  And I could have.  There were a whole slew of classic SciFi/Fantasy released for Kindle with a 2014 release date.  A lot of them I bought back in the day, but the books are un read and boxed up in my attic.  Buying the eBook version was awfully tempting.  

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews.

Kindle Books Purchased:
Megan Meade's Guide to the McGowan Boys by Kate Brian – Kindle Monthly Deal
Silver Birch, Blood Moon by Ellen Datlow, Terri Windling - Cyber Monday Deal
Black Swan, White Raven by Ellen Datlow, Terri Windling - Cyber Monday Deal
The Grey Horse by R. A. MacAvoy – Cyber Monday Deal
Salt by Danielle Ellison
Storm (Entangled Teen) (Salt) by Danielle Ellison
Christmas Eve at Friday Harbor by Lisa Kleypas – Kindle Daily Deal
Carrier of the Mark by Leigh Fallon
Christmas in Venice: A Short Story by Meadow Taylor – Free eBook
Raven (The Raven Saga Book 1)
by Suzy Turner – Free eBook

Manga Purchased:
Arata: The Legend 20
xxxHolic Rei 2

Blu Ray Purchased:
Ranma ½ Season 4 BluRay

Thursday, December 4, 2014

The Good Thing About GoodReads Giveaways

 I've been on GoodReads for a couple of years and enter giveaways almost every day.  I have won several, which is always exciting!!!  But I just wanted to talk about what a wonderful vehicle the giveaways are for bringing attention to lesser known or self-published authors.

I like to go on GoodReads and see what books are being given away.  I pull up the synopsis and if it sounds interesting to me, I'll enter the giveaway.  But...I'll also go to Amazon and look for the Kindle version.  If the book is on Amazon and is already published, I will download a sample.  If I like what I read, I will often go ahead and order the book anyway.

I think this is a fantastic opportunity for readers:

  1. to find new authors they may not be familiar with
  2. to find new books by authors they are already fans of
  3. to have a chance at winning free books

Below is a list I've compiled of all the books I've bought after entering a giveaway for them.  As you can see there are at least a couple titles I entered a contest for, but I ended up buying other books in the series.

16 Things I Thought Were True by Janet Gurtler
All That Glows by Ryan Graudin
Ashes on the Waves by Mary Lindsey
Best Kind of Broken by Chelsea Fine
Born of Oak and Silver ( Chronicles Book 1) by Marie McKean
Champagne and Lemon Drops by Jean Oram
Come as You Are by Theresa Weir
Crashing Into You by B.D. Rowe
Creepy Christmas by Jaimie Adams
Dark Huntsman by Jessica Aspen
Dear Mr Knightly by Katherine Reay ( I won this on GoodReads,
     but I bought the Kindle as well since it came up as a daily deal)
Defy by Sara Larson
Desperately Ever After by Lauren Kenyon
Double Star by Cindy Saunders
Eternal Echoes by Angela Corbett
Evie's Knight by Kimberly Krey
Fae by C.J. Abedi
Fan Art by Sarah Tregay
Fanmail by Mia Castle
Forever Fredless by Suzy Turner
Forget Me by K.A. Harrington
Gates of Thresd and Stone by Lori M. Lee
God Save the Queen by Kate Locke
Grounded by You (A Willoughby Inn Love Story) by Ivy Sinclair
House of Ivy and Sorrow by Natalie Whipple
How to Meet Boys by Catherine  Clark
I Put a Spell on You, a Halloween Anthology by April Oglesbee
Incidental Happenstance by Kim DeSalvo - From Giveaway for
     Book 2, In Hap*pily Ever After
Just Like in the Movies by Kelly Fiore
Just One Damned Thing After Another: Vol 1 The Chronicles of
     St Mary's by Jodi Taylor - From giveaway for Vol 2: A
          Symphony of Echoes
Kissing My Old Life Au Revoir by Eliza Watson
Last Best Kiss by Claire LaZebnik
Losing Logan by Sherry Ficklin
Love Show by Audrey Bell
Madman's Daughter by Megan Shepherd (from her
     Dark Curiosity giveaway)
Mistwalker by Saundra Mitchell
My Own Mr. Darcy by Karey White
Nightmare Affair by Mindee Arnett - I won a giveaway for Book 2,
     Nightmare Dilemma
One Hundred Names by Cecilia Ahern
Paris Cravings by Kimberley Montpetit
Piper Day's Ultimate Guide to Avoiding George Clooney by
     Vanessa Fewings and Christina Cannarella
Poe by J. Lincoln Fenn
Rock 'n Tapestries by Shari Copell
Scintillate by Tracy Clark
Sense & Sensibility by Joanna Trollope
Shadow Hunters & Downworlders by Cassandra Clare and Holly Black
Sign of the Throne (Solas Beir Trilogy Book 1) by Melissa Eskue
Silence: Queen of the Dead Book 1 by Michelle Sagara
Soar by Alyssa Rose Ivy - Ended  up buying all the Empire
     Chronicles and Crescent Chronicles 
The Curse: Touch of Eternity by Emily Bold - Also bought Breath
     of Yesterday, Book 2
The Harvest Festival ( Fallen Oaks Book 1) by Jack Gallow
The Morrow Secrets by Susan McNally
The Naughty List by L.A. Kelley
The Road to You by Marilyn Brant
Undertow by K.R. Conway
Undressing Mr. Darcy by Karen Doornebos
Unleashing Mr. Darcy by Teri Wilson
Untimed by Andy Gavin
Windows (Coming Home Book 1) by Emily Minton

I just wanted to say thanks, Goodreads for introducing me to so
many books and authors!! 

Monday, December 1, 2014

To Buy or Not to Buy: Dream Chaser by Angie Stanton

I read a lot of samples. Based on the sample, I will decide whether or not to buy the book. Generally, if I do buy the book it is in eBook format. I do find that when I purchase the eBook after reading the sample it goes into a eBook vault that never gets opened. Ever. Again. If I can't see it, it's not there. Be that as it may, I still read samples and still purchase books based on that sample. Perhaps I should just read the ones in the vault. Points to ponder. Never the less, it is time again for To Buy or Not to Buy......

Dream Chaser by Angie Stanton
Book Description (From Amazon):
Publication Date: November 8, 2011
Willow Thomas has a bad habit of running away from things that scare her. And most recently, she quit her high school cheerleading squad after a terrifying fall.

With time on her hands, she auditions for a musical production directed by a Broadway choreographer. Just as things are looking up, Willow discovers she will be performing opposite Eli McAvoy, the best friend she abandoned three years before. To make matters worse, the kids in the musical hate her, her singing sucks, and her dog is sick.

Eli has grown up during their years apart and now possesses confidence and good looks, as well as a giant chip on his shoulder. He is in no hurry to play nice with Willow, but their entwined roles in the musical lead to entwined bodies in the backseat of his car.b

Just when Willow finally has her life under control, another surprise is delivered in the form of her greatest challenge yet. Will she run or finally stand and face her fears? And will Eli be there to help or turn his back on her for good?

My First Impression:
The tale unfolds with Willow injuring herself during cheerleading practice because she was not taking the proper precautions. She winds up in the hospital, but she is going to be okay physically. Emotionally, the physical trauma has left her scarred and scared. She is the best flyer on the squad and cheerleading has meant the world to her, but after her fall in an ill-fated stunt, she quits the squad and gives up cheering forever. Her best friend nags at her to reconsider, but she is just too afraid to risk another fall.
In order to have an excuse to not rejoin cheering, she decides to audition for a role in the school play.

I picked up Royally Lost when it came out in this year and I had purchased Love ’Em or Leave ‘Em as well. Haven’t actually read either of them, but I enjoyed the samples I read. This one seems to be on par.
Magical things can happen in a school play. I was in school plays, not that anything magical ever happened to me, but there is nothing like the bright lights of the stage.

To buy

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Stacking the Shelves - November 30,2014

I just can't take these sales everywhere!!! The temptation is too great!!!

This was a big week for me. I got my monthly shipment of manga. Since it is also the end of the month, I held off on ordering any of the Kindle Monthly Deals until today, so there were a few eBooks on sale. I had a 30% coupon for Barnes & Noble, so I had to go there for a book. I got a couple of ARCs for participating in a cover reveal. And I got in a book shipment of bargain books and deeply discounted books. Merry Christmas early!!!

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews.

Books Purchased:
Circle of Silence by Carol M. Tanzman - This book was less than $2.00 from Amazon

Mirage (Haven Book 2) by Kristi Cook - Discounted 16%

Waterfell by Amalie Howard - Discounted 13%

Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch - Discounted 29%

Evertrue by Brodi Ashton - Discounted 30%

Some Quiet Place by Kelsey Sutton - Discounted 38%

Where Silence Gathers by Kelsey Sutton - Discounted 16%

Waistcoats and Weaponry by Gail Carriger - Discounted 44%

Ruby Red by Kersten Gier - Discounted 23%

Vampire Knight: Fleeting Dreams by Matsuri Hino and Ayuna Fujisaki - This is in novel format, not manga

Anomaly (Schrodinger’s Consortium) by Tonya Kuper - It was cheaper to get the eBook, but I like the cover - Acquired when I went to B&N

Boy with the Hidden Name (Otherworld Book 2) by Skylar Dorset - Acquired when I went to B&N

Captive (The Blackcoat Rebellion Book 2) by Aimee Carter - Used my 30% off B&N coupon

 ARCs Received:
Prodigal (The Lost Imperials Book 2) by Tyler H. Jolley and Sherry D. Ficklin – Courtesy of Clean Teen Publishing

Riven (The Lost Imperials Book 3) by Tyler H. Jolley and Sherry D. Ficklin - Courtesy of Clean Teen Publishing
I had participated in the cover reveal and had requested the ARCs. Can't wait to rip into them!

Kindle Books Purchased:
Forged: An Altered Series Prequel by Jennifer Rush

The Taking by Kimberly Derting - Currently priced at $1.99

Darker Still: A Novel of Magic Most Foul by Leanna Renee Hieber - Currently priced at $2.99

Artful: A Novel by Peter David - Currently priced at $1.99 - The Artful Dodger always was my favorite character from Oliver Twist

Anna Dressed in Blood (Anna Dressed in Blood Series Book 1) by Kendare Blake - Currently priced at $2.99

 Manga Purchased:
Dracula Everlasting 1

Alice in the Country of Joker: Circus & Liar’s Game 6

Alice in the Country of Clover: Knight’s Knowledge 2

Honey Blood 2

Yukarism 1

Millenium Snow 4

Kimi ni Todoke (From Me to You) 20

My Little Monster 5

Crimson Empire: Circumstances to Serve a Noble 1

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Stacking the Shelf: November 23, 2014

So the comic shop I go to had a weekend blow out sale. On the one hand, I am pretty much caught up on my comic issues. On the other's a sale!!! So hard to resist, especially since hubby had a stack of graphic novels.

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews.

Books Purchased:
Eternal by Kristi Cook

Fables: The Deluxe Edition Book Two by Bill Willingham - Blow Out Sale

Fables: The Deluxe Edition Book Three by Bill Willingham - Blow Out Sale

Fables: The Deluxe Edition Book Five by Bill Willingham - Blow Out Sale

Fables: The Deluxe Edition Book Nine by Bill Willingham - Blow Out Sale

Guardians of the Galaxy: The Complete Collection Volume 2 by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning - Blow Out Sale

Kindle Books Purchased:
When a Child is Born - A Chronicles of St. Mary's short story (The Chronicles of St Mary's) by Jodi Taylor – Free eBook

When Magic Sleeps (Darkly Fae Book 1) by Tera Lynn Childs - Currently priced at $.99

Extracted (The Lost Imperials) by Sherry Ficklin, Tyler Jolley - Kindle Big Deal Sale $.99

Midwinterblood by Marcus Sedgwick – Kindle Big Deal Sale $2.99

The Sandlot Princess by Carly Syms - Currently priced at $2.99

Savor (Vicious Feast Book 1) by Kate Evangelista - I've been hoping the book store would get it in, but to no avail. Broke down and bought the eBook.

Steam and Stratagem (A Roberta Stephenson Novel) by Christopher Hoare - Price dropped to $.99

Revels (Legacy) by Molly Cochran - Currently priced at $.99

If Only (Entangled Embrace) (If Only...) by A.J. Pine - Price dropped to $.99

Promise (Soul Savers Book 1) by Kristie Cook – Free eBook

Manga Purchased:
Dracula Everlasting 2 & 3

Crimson Empire: Circumstances to Serve a Noble 2

Alice in the Country of Hearts: Love Labyrinth of Thorns

Alice in the Country of Clover: March’s Hare

Alice in the Country of Clover: Nightmare

Odd is on Our Side

Honey Blood 1

Kiss of the Rose Princess 1

Dengeki Daisy 15

Black Rose Alice 2

Bleach 62

Rin-Ne 16


Tuesday, November 18, 2014

To Buy or Not to Buy: The Crystal Heart By Joel Marine

It's time for the next installment of To Buy or Not to Buy...

The Crystal Heart by Joel Marine

Book Description (From Amazon):
 July 27, 2014  10 - 18  5 - 12
In The Crystal Heart, Lillein Grey, a young would-be adventurer, has lived her entire life solely within the confines of her grandfather’s estate. Lillein’s dream is to explore the world, but she has always felt like it was an unattainable desire. 

Until one day, when Lillein is exploring the estate, a series of events begin to unfold, causing her life to change forever. It all begins with an uninvited visit from a group of mysterious strangers. Soon after, Lillein’s fear-ridden grandfather forces her to pack up all of her belongings and thrusts her into a world long kept secret from her. 

Lillein’s eagerness for adventure is fuelled by the excitement of traveling to exotic and distant lands. However, her elation is cut short when she is sent to Lest Academy. While at Lest Academy, Lillein’s audacious demeanor gets the best of her, when she learns of a rare and ancient relic called the Crystal Heart hidden within the school. 

Little does Lillein know, the Crystal Heart is going to lead her to a dark truth about the world she now lives in and her secret past. 

My First Impression:
Sentence number 2: …, for the walls were narrow and jagged with sharp rocks.

Strike 1.

The first chapter details two men in search of something.  They are not named at first.  They are referred to as the taller of the two men and the shorter of the two men, but we do find out their names are Allen and Chris.  We also find out that the bag Allen, the taller man, is carrying has a baby girl inside.  Allen and Chris are on the run with the baby, named Lillein.  There was a war that it seems Allen was on the losing side of.  Allen wants to be with his wife, but he is trying to protect his daughter. 

Chris cautions him about his daughter and what could happen to her if they were caught.  He pulls a blue crustal out of his pocket and states it was once a young boy and the crystal is all that is left of him.

In the conversation that follows we learn Allen is of a race with some kind of powers.  Alchemists have been trying to destroy that power.  In a botched experiment, the soul of a young boy was transferred to the crystal where it is now trapped.

The sample was longer, but just could not hold my interest.  While the idea of the story is okay, the execution was lacking in my opinion.  I do applaud writers who self-publish their work, there is a lot of drivel out there and it needs to be weeded through to find the gems.  It may just be a case of the author needing more experience, but this is not one I could take the time to read.


Not to buy

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Stacking the Shelves - November 16, 2014

Well, now that I got caught up on Once Upon a Time (Watched the first three seasons and caught up on Season 4 in about 4 weeks), I can finally get back to reading and writing more.

As I'm trying to curb the book buying, it was a pretty slow week.  I am still trying to get to the library to request a library card, but the town library closes at 5 or 6 on the weeknights and is clsed on the weekends.  What's up with that?  Anyway, back to my haul...

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews.

Books Purchased:
The Bane Chronicles by Cassandra Clare 

Dreamer’s Pool: A Blackthorn & Grim Novel by Juliet Marillier - I really love the cover on this one!

My True Love Gave to Me edited by Stephanie Perkins

Kindle Books Purchased:
Reborn (Shadow Falls: After Dark Book 1) by C. C. Hunter - Currently priced at $2.99

The Rithmatist
by Brandon Sanderson, Ben McSweeney - Kindle Deal of the Day

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Swoon Thursday: Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

Swoon Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by YA Bound @

Here's how it works. You take a book you're currently reading or recently read and share what made your toes curl and your heart race!!!

This week's selection once again comes from Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins.

Our mouths hover, a murmur apart. Our breathing is fast and warm. He parts my lips with his.

And then we clash together like the ravenous animals we are.

I climb onto his lap, needing closeness, pushing my hips against his. The skirt of my dress rides upward. I feel desperate, in agony. A ragged sound escapes from between his lips. Our kisses grow frantic, and his mouth is assertive and his hands are strong and-

"Ah hem."

Monday, November 10, 2014

To Buy or Not to Buy: The Search for WondLa by Tony DiTerlizzi

It's time for the next installment of To Buy or Not to Buy...

The Search for WondLa by Tony DiTerlizzi

Book Description (From Amazon):
Publication Date: September 21, 2010 | Age Level: 10 and up | Grade Level: 5 and up
Now in paperback, Tony DiTerlizzi’s New York Times bestselling, richly illustrated modern classic.

When a marauder destroys the underground sanctuary that Eva Nine was raised in by the robot Muthr, the twelve-year-year-old girl is forced to flee aboveground. Eva Nine is searching for anyone else like her: She knows that other humans exist because of an item she treasures—a scrap of cardboard on which is depicted a young girl, an adult, and a robot, with the strange word, “WondLa.”

Breathtaking two-color illustrations throughout display another dimension of the tale, and readers with webcams can also view Augmented Reality that reveals additional information about Eva Nine’s world. Tony DiTerlizzi honors traditional children’s literature in this totally original space-age adventure—one that is as complex as an alien planet, but as simple as a child’s wish for a place to belong.

My First Impression:
First sentence: Eva Nine was dying.

Huh? I haven’t even met the character yet and she’s dying? It turns out to be a hologram training exercise, though. She lives alone in a place called Sanctuary with only a robot Called Muthr to care for her. She is itching to go outside, but Muthr tells her she’s not ready yet. Eva Nine believes there may be other humans alive on the surface, but Muthr assures her there are no others like her.

Sustaining a cut from assisting Muthr in the kitchen, she went in search of a bandage for it and discovered a hidden doorway. A hidden doorway she later plans to sneak through.

The set-up for this story is intriguing. Eva Nine is being taught survival skills, but by a robot.
1. Trust Technology
2. Signal Others
3. Find Shelter
4. Create Fire
5. Procure Food and Water
6. Know First Aid
It seems as if she is underground and that she is the last of her kind. What happened to the surface of the planet? Or the other humans? Why does she need to learn survival skills? Once learned, what will she do with those skills?
There are enough questions in need of answers. This is a book for young readers in the 5 – 8 age bracket, but seems like it would be an enjoyable story for the entire family.

To buy.
Actually, hubby already bought this book so that he could read it with our niece in an attempt to get her fired up about reading. I just never read any of it, but I think I should.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Stacking the Shelves - November 9, 2014

Well, I didn't get to post this last week as I generally write the post in the evening and I forgot we were having a guest stray over. Naturally my computer is in the spare room. Really need to figure out where to move it to.

Anyway, the acquisitions are for the past two weeks.

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews.

Books Purchased:
The Graveyard Book Volume 2 by Neil Gaiman

Fan Art by Sarah Tregay - Used Book

Glamour in Glass by Mary Robinette Kowal - Bargain Book - I saw this one at the TOR table, but it was not a giveaway.  Sine AMazon was selling for $6.00, I just ordered it.

Of Poseidon by Anna Banks - Used Book

The Slow Regard of Silent Things by Patrick Rothfuss

Blue Lily, Lily Blue (Book III of The Raven Cycle) by Maggie Stiefvater

Seasons of Storms by Susanna Kearsley

You Can’t Fight Crazy: A Get Fuzzy Collection by Darby Conley

Hansel and Gretel Oversized Deluxe Edition by Neil Gaiman

Waterfall (Teardrop) by Lauren Kate

The Retribution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin


Gift Received:
The Secret Journal of Ichabod Crane (Sleepy Hollow) by Alex Irvine - Hubby got me a Halloween plate full of lots of Halloween goodies, including the journal of Ichabod Crane.  Apparently, he's dreamy.

Kindle Books Purchased:
Ghosts by Gaslight by Jack Dann, Nick Gevers - Halloween featured eBook

Black Ice by Becca Fitzpatrick - BookPerk listed as a daily deal - Currently priced at $2.99

Someday Maybe (Entangled Embrace) by Ophelia London

Ticker by Lisa Mantchev - Kindle First selection for November

The Forgotten Ones: Book 1 (The Danaan Trilogy) by Laura Howard - Free eBook

Losing Logan by Sherry Ficklin - Free eBook

The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen - BookPerk listed as a daily deal - Currently listed at $1.99

House of Ivy & Sorrow by Natalie Whipple - BookPerk listed as a daily deal - Currently listed at $1.99 - I actually hadn't planned to purchase this one.  I was looking at it and tried to back arrow to the prior page, but hit the purchase button on accident.  I have no idea how that happened since they are on opposites sides of the page.  Tried to go back and cancel, but I didn't see a cancel button.

For Darkness Shows the Stars by Diana Peterfreund - BookPerk listed as a daily deal - Currently listed at $1.99

Manga Purchased:
Alice in the Country of Clover: Knight's Knowledge 3

Giveaway Won:
Prototype by M.D. Waters – Goodreads Giveaway! - Thanks to the author!  It was signed and came with a temporary tattoo and a photo business card.

I hope you all got something good!