Monday, February 25, 2008

Much Ado About You; Eloisa James

Written by Eloisa James and published in 2005 by Avon, this is the first of the Essex sisters grouping. The others are: Kiss Me Annabel, The Taminig of the Duke, and Pleasure for Pleasure. The cameraderie between the women in Ms. James' stories is always a pleasure to read, like icing on top of an already delicious cupcake.

Raphael Jourdain, Duke of Holbrook, is expecting four young girls as his newest wards. To say he's surprised when four young Scottish women arrive is a slight understatement. But you know, he's rich & he can afford to support them until they marry- so he copes. One of Rafe's closest friends, Lucius Felton, shows up unexpectedly for dinner the night the Essex sisters arrive. From then on he and Tess and his buddy Garret Langham vie for Tess' attentions.

Poor Tess Essex meantime, is torn between her duty to her sisters and her confused heart. As the oldest of the sisters she feels her duty is to marry well to a man wealthy enough to support her sisters until they marry. And as we all know, in circs like these, love is both unlooked for and not the most necessary characteristic. She makes what IMO was a rash decision which she regrets later (of course; don't we all?).

So Tess and Lucius and Garret muddle along. Feeling each other and the situation out until everything boils to a head (so to speak, lol). Tess and Lucius end up married on a special license on extremely short notice. You know? Quite a few romances end up with a wedding via special license. How is that, I'd like to know? But I digress. One of Tess' sisters creates a huge crisis that ends spectacularly badly- and she blames Tess. You know where good intentions lead you, right? Well, Tess isn't going there exactly, but she needs to learn that sometimes you can't be everything to everyone. Anyhow.

So all's not really that well for Tess. Except for Lucius. Who turns out to be a boon, naturally. :) I must say I've very strong feelings about Tess's siblings. Not all of which are positive either. I anticipate reading each young woman's story entirely due to Ms. James' ability to pull me into her narrative. Like many other romance readers I find Ms. James' books uniformly excellent and I am pleased to say I'Ve several more on my shelves awaiting just the right time to pull them out to savor every word.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Thursday 13 #37- Family Update

I've not done a family update in a couple of months, I think. So this morning is as good a time as any. Right? I can't help it if my prof. drones on and on and on and this network is really fast and I'm bored's supposed to snow tonight!!! YAY!!

Click link in title above for a list of other TT participants. Leave a link in the comments and I'll link to you. The purpose of TT is to help bloggers get to know each other better.

1. Husband is a reluctant blogger, link HERE to his/our fitness blog. One post each, not all that impressive. Yet. LOL :)

2. Graduate is now employed at a fast food restaurant & gets free/reduced meals. Leading to his grandmothers and I worrying that he is giving himself clogged arteries at 19. It's wonderful to have a teenager who's fabulous so much so that all I really worry about is his heart health.

3. Anime Queen is bucking for a college hunting trip out to Chicago to visit an art school out there. Husband wishes to go and see the Cubbies if we go.

4. Re: #3, I've already taken a week off in August & so has Hubby. We've not made any firm plans, but it's being tossed around.

5. Pianist is set to play intermission music at a play his school is putting on tomorrow night, weather permitting. He says he plans to play most of the pieces he's been working on with his piano teacher.

6. Also, I've asked Pianist's teacher (aka our church organist and choirmaster) to hunt around for voice and piano camp this summer. Pianist needs to be busy and his singing voice, when you can get him to solo for you- which is rarely, is still soprano. That beautiful clear bell tone only achievable by young men yet untouched by puberty.

7. Anime Queen and a girlfriend are planning to be a girls' church group camping trip youth leaders. This will be with the girlfriend's youth group, a different denomination than we are, but I don't care. Fresh air. Girlfriends. The great outdoors. Faith. It doesn't get much better, except that it'll be free to us. A twofer. lol

8. As for I'm taking a computer class. As I mentioned above. Right now. But he's droning on and on and on about the origins of the internet. And Reston (VA, right up the road) being important to the WWW. So here I am instead. With you. :)

9. Work is ..worky. A word of my own invention, meaning ...meh, more of the same, you get the idea. Some days ulcer inducing. Other days quiet and uneventful. We're finally entering the 21st century and all new equipment is being installed over the next few days. Most everyone else I work with are stressed to the max. Not me. As far as I'm concerned it's about damn time and it'll make the whole work experience easier by far.

10. Valentine's was quiet and simple. Filled with chocolate of all types and colors and flavors. We spent it together at home. Maybe next month we'll do something for Hubby b'day and St. Patrick's day combined. If we're not exhausted by the work and school and family schedules that leave us with so much time together. NOT

11. Our neighbor had a screen pried off of their back window a week or so ago. I'd be very nervous except our backdoor a) barely opens because the floor is uneven and won't allow the door open wider than 12" and b) is partially blocked by furniture. The window part? No ideas on what to do about that other than the fact that most days we have an uneven schedule and you can never really tell who's home when. I really want a dog though. A dog who barks.

12. Anime Queen's talk of college hunting has kind of squeezed my heart a little. I'd not thought much about her getting ready to fledge out of our little nest. But here she is, talking about colleges and what she might like to study. Wanting a job where she can work anywhere around the world if she wants to. All of which we've encouraged, it's just my poor little heart isn't quite ready to consider it all.

13. Well, that's all the news that's fit to print for now I think. More next month.

Monday, February 18, 2008

January Reading Synopsis

As further evidence of what a slacker blogger I've become in the last few weeks, my draft January synopsis originally had a date stamp of 1 February. It's now 18, almost 19 February and it's just now getting up. Better late than never I suppose. LOL ;) Eventually I might get around to putting up my end of year, 2007! statistics. Listed in no particular order below.

The Snow White Bride by Claire Delacroix Medieval

A Splendid Indescretion Traditional Regency

Love Me Forever by Donna Fletcher Medieval

When I Fall in Love by Lynn Kurland Contemporary time travel, present to past

Love Came Just in Time by Lynn Kurland Anthology, all by Ms. Kurland

A Well Favored Gentleman, Christina Dodd Historicl paranormal, magical being

Stronger Than Magic, Heather Cullman Historical paranormal, faeries

Goddess of the Rose, P.C. Cast Contemporary romantic fantasy

Even Vampires Get the Blues, Katie MacAlister Love and Laughter paranormal, vampires

Saturday, February 16, 2008

A Lady of His Own; Stephanie Laurens

Written by Stephanie Laurens and published by Avon in 2004, A Lady of His Own is the third novel in the Bastion Club series, which is unrelated to the Cynster books. I particularly enjoy the Bastion Club books as well as Ms. Laurens' shorter books which are slowly being rereleased- I think. Anyhow, I like her shorter books too. I know alot of regular romance readers are tired of the Cynsters and their related books, but consider trying these, they're quite good.

Charles St. Austell, Earl of Lostwithiel. Can I just say I love that name, Lostwithiel? No reason. Just do. Anyhow. Onwards. He's returned from the war and is at home on an assignment to find a French sympathizer operating from the English coast using the smugglers. Also nearby is Lady Penelope Selbourne, former childhood playmate. Charles never thought she'd be unmarried after all of his long years away, but here she is. Sneaking around his house in the middle of the night.

Two adults (Penny is in her late 20's & Charles is in his early 30's) discover each other amid murder, smugglers and nosy relatives. ALOHO allows us to watch two people build a relationship upon their shared childhood history. Penny realizes she has unconsciously used Charles as the template on her husband hunting, naturally no one matches up. Charles, for his part, has nurtured the memories of hearth and home to sustain him amid the horrors of war.

Can Charles convince Penny he's really the one? Will he be able to keep her safe from the murder terrorizing the coast? Can Penny and Charles come to terms with each other? And will Dalziel ever get his own book?

Thursday, February 14, 2008

New Adventure

The Husband has embarked on a new adventure, as part of a class he's taking. He's begun a fitness blog- and has asked me to participate. He's called it BOB and Muffintop's Fitness Adventures. We thought a little humor might go a long way to easing us into a new lifestyle. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA *gasp*

God knows I could improve my fitness habits.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Lifejackets aren't necessary??!

I'm a week late posting this, but a friend emailed me a request referencing legislation pending in the Virginia legislature- apparently there is no state law requiring children under the age of 12 to wear life preservers while on or near watercraft. Please email your local state representative in support of HB 1250, which would require children under the age of 12 to wear a life preserver.

If you live in the state of Virginia please contact your local representative. Apologies in advance for not making links active.

Delegate Harvey B. Morgan (Committee Chair, Co-Patron of the Bill)
(R) - House District 98 - Essex, Gloucester, King and Queen, King William, Mathews, and Middlesex Counties

Delegate M. Kirkland Cox
(R) - House District 66 - Chesterfield County, City of Colonial Heights

Delegate Beverly J. Sherwood
(R) - House District 29 - Frederick County, City of Winchester

Delegate R. Lee Ware, Jr.
(R) - House District 65 - Chesterfield and Powhatan Counties

Delegate Thomas C. Wright, Jr.
(R) - House District 61 - Amelia, Brunswick, Lunenburg, Mecklenburg and Nottoway Counties

Delegate Robert D. Orrock, Sr.
(R) - House District 54 - Caroline and Spotsylvania Counties

Delegate Christopher B. Saxman
(R) - House District 20 - Augusta, Highland and Rockingham Counties, City of Staunton

Delegate Clarke N. Hogan
(R) - House District 60 - Charlotte, Halifax, Nottoway and Prince Edward Counties

Delegate Edward T. Scott
(R) - House District 30 - Culpeper, Madison and Orange Counties

Delegate Daniel W. Marshall, III
(R) - House District 14 - Henry and Pittsylvania Counties, City of Danville

Delegate Matthew J. Lohr
(R) - House District 26 - Rockingham County, City of Harrisonburg

Delegate Charles D. Poindexter
(R) - House District 9 - Floyd, Franklin and Pittsylvania Counties

Delegate Brenda L. Pogge (told the kids she would support the bill)
(R) - House District 96 - James City and York Counties, City of Newport News

Delegate Kenneth R. Plum
(D) - House District 36 - Fairfax County

Delegate James M. Shuler
(D) - House District 12 - Alleghany, Bath, Craig, Giles and Montgomery Counties, City of Covington

Delegate Albert C. Eisenberg
(D) - House District 47 - Arlington County

Delegate Stephen C. Shannon
(D) - House District 35 - Fairfax County

Delegate Lynwood W. Lewis, Jr.
(D) - House District 100 - Accomack and Northampton Counties, Cities of Hampton and Norfolk

Delegate David L. Bulova
(D) - House District 37 - Fairfax County, City of Fairfax

Delegate Margaret G. Vanderhye
(D) - House District 34 - Fairfax County

Delegate Robert W. Mathieson
(D) - House District 21 - City of Virginia Beach

Delegate Joseph F. Bouchard
(D) - House District 83 - City of Virginia Beach

Thursday 13 #36- Houseplants To Cheer You Up

It’s been several weeks since I’ve participated in Thursday 13, breaking yet another resolution. Maybe I shouldn’t use that word- for me ‘resolutions’ are bound to fail. I guess I could just say ‘goal’ but somehow that lacks the oomph of resolution. Anyhow. The only list I can think of is to list my houseplants. It’s a gray, drippy chilly January and the warmth of spring seems oh so far away.

1. Ponytail palm

2. Christmas Cactus

3. Palm tree

4. Spider plants

5. Pointsettia

6. Maidenhair fern

7. Norfolk Island Pine

8. Asparagus fern

9.Peace Lily

10. Philodendron

11. Epipremnum (pothos)

12. Thanksgiving cactus

13. Donkey Tail

The purpose of Thursday thirteen is so bloggers can get to know each other better. Include a link in the comments and I'll link to you here.