May 31, 2011

And The Winners Are...........

Thanks everyone that entered, and an especially big THANK YOU to those of you that wished me a Happy Birthday:)
(We are doing this old school and all names are in the hat,............)

First Prize
So, first prize is a 'My Book Chatter' tote bag, a lovely dragon and amethyst faerie metal bookmark, and the book Finding Sky by Joss Stirling.

And the winner is...Jennifer

Runners up prizes
Three runners up will receive some totally cute New Zealand inspired swaggy stuff that includes a magnetic bookmark, an I♥NZ pencil and character eraser.

Pukeko winner is...Maurielle

Kiwi winner is...scarletkira

Sheep winner is...Anonymous(lovetoread26)

A HUGE congratulations to all the winners, I will email you shortly so be sure to reply with your details.

Check back soon everyone for my June-First Monday Of The Month Giveaway for a chance to win another great prize (It wont be a surprise this time!)

May 30, 2011

Book Review: The Restorer by Amanda Stevens

*I hate spoilers in a review and therefore will only include the blurb for this book and refrain from giving away anything else for the benefit of those who may still have this on their TBR piles.*

The Restorer
Amanda Stevens
Source: NetGalley

My name is Amelia Gray. I'm a cemetery restorer who sees ghosts. In order to protect myself from the parasitic nature of the dead, I've always held fast to the rules passed down from my father. But now a haunted police detective has entered my world and everything is changing, including the rules that have always kept me safe.
It started with the discovery of a young woman's brutalized body in an old Charleston graveyard I've been hired to restore. The clues to the killer—and to his other victims—lie in the headstone symbolism that only I can interpret. Devlin needs my help, but his ghosts shadow his every move, feeding off his warmth, sustaining their presence with his energy. To warn him would be to invite them into my life. I've vowed to keep my distance, but the pull of his magnetism grows ever stronger even as the symbols lead me closer to the killer and to the gossamer veil that separates this world from the next.

My Thoughts

While this is a great story with some really interesting characters it all felt a little unfinished, and not because its book 1 in a three book series. 

Just about every person mentioned has secrets that were alluded to but not revealed, or only semi revealed and so I was left feeling a bit confused and unsatisfied.
The main character Amelia is a likeable enough person but her family is a bit of a mystery and the very obvious attraction between Amelia and Devlin is never really fully explored either and so I was again left unsatisfied. 

By the end of the book, the killer is found and the reasons behind the killings explained.....however, it ended up feeling a little rushed in comparison to the flow the rest of the book had.

Even though I didn't truly connect with Amelia or this story, it is a good paranormal mystery/thriller and gets 3 stars from me :]

May 26, 2011


I have emailed all the winners of my WILD competition and they are

1st..................Meghan @ Books and a Cup of Tea (winner of Spells and Wild swag)

2nd.................Lady Reader (Wild swag)

3rd..................Denise (Wild swag)

CONGRATULATIONS EVERYONE and thanks heaps for playing ♥xox♥

May 20, 2011

Book Review: Slow Burn by E.B Walters

*I hate spoilers in a review and therefore will only include the blurb for this book and refrain from giving away anything else for the benefit of those who may still have this on their TBR piles.*
Slow Burn
E.B Walters (aka Ednah Walters)
Source: Received from the author
She doesn’t want to deal with the past….

Ten years ago, Ashley Fitzgerald witnessed the death of her parents in a tragic fire and her mind blocked the memory. She pretends to have moved on, is a successful artist and photographer, until she opens her door to a stranger, assumes he’s a model and asks him to strip to his briefs.

He plans to expose the truth…

Wealthy businessman Ron Noble has the body, the jet, the fast cars and the women, but he hides a deadly secret. His father started the fire that killed Ashley’s parents. Now someone is leaving him clues that could exonerate his father and they lead to Ashley’s door. Blindsided by the blazing attraction between them and a merciless killer silencing anyone who was there the night of the fire, Ron can’t dare tell Ashley the truth. Yet the answer he seeks may very well tear them apart.

While a demented arsonist plots his ultimate revenge..

My Thoughts

I have to start off by clarifying how I received my copy of this book for the benefit of those people who will undoubtedly get the wrong idea and may even pooh-pooh the author or myself.

I entered a facebook competition to win a signed bookmark. 
The author was overly generous and sent me her book as well as the bookmark! 
Again, a very generous unsolicited gift from the author with NO strings attached. 

On with my thoughts...........

Totally, absolutely, without doubt, LOVED IT!!!

The back story is great. The characters are strong, well fleshed out and real. 
There is just the right amount of mystery and intrigue, and of course romance.
I really felt Ron and Ashley's attraction. I understood them, and the reasons for why they were who they were because the author took the time to make them into real people that I easily cared about without drowning them in unnecessary and overly complicated explanations. 
This book had great flow, and at no point was I bored or disappointed.

For me, Slow Burn was like that first piece of chocolate cake. It wasn't enough. I want more. More Fitzgerald's that is!!!!
I read the teaser chapters for the next book in The Fitzgerald Series and I for one will be pre ordering it!!!

A well deserved 5 star read.

May 16, 2011

Book Review: Born Of Shadows by Sherrilyn Kenyon

*I hate spoilers in a review and therefore will only include the blurb for this book and refrain from giving away anything else for the benefit of those who may still have this on their TBR piles.*

Born of Shadows
Sherrilyn Kenyon
Source: NetGalley

In the universe where the League is law, most live in fear. We fight back. Welcome to a world where corrupt assassination politics dominate everyone. It's kill or be killed.
Caillen's destiny was to become the next generation of Dagan smugglers. Until fate intervenes. Suddenly, his life is not his own and his loyalties are split in a way he could have never imagined.
In a world where everything's earned and nothing is given, Desideria has battled to have a place of honor in her mother's Royal Guard. But when she uncovers the plot to kill her mother and overthrow her government, she knows she has to move quickly to prove it. Unfortunately, her only hope is a man whose past is as jaded as his present. Now they must find common ground to work together or more than just their lives will be forfeit. Their worlds and families will be enslaved.

My Thoughts

Let me start by saying I LOVE SHERRILYN KENYON!
Her 'Dark Hunter' series are some of my all time favorite books. That being said, Born of Shadows is not.
Its not a bad book. In fact it has a great story, great characters, and great twists and turns that keep you guessing.
However, I was bored. It wasn't a boring book, but I was bored.
There's not anything I can even put my finger on to say 'that's it, that's what was wrong with this book' because I cant.
I was less bored towards the end when all the secondary characters came into play a lot more but even that didn't save this book for me sadly.
A mediocre 3 star read.

May 10, 2011

Book Review: With A Twist by Heather Peters

*I hate spoilers in a review and therefore will only include the blurb for this book and refrain from giving away anything else for the benefit of those who may still have this on their TBR piles.*
With A Twist
Heather Peters
Source: Publisher via NetGalley

Forty year old Ava Denotti needs a hefty dose of self-confidence.  Can she get it from the twenty-nine year old  former fiance of the woman that ran off with her husband? Tattooed, Bad boy Shane Sullivan is determined to make up for the time he wasted with the wrong woman.  He's finally given the opportunity to pursue an attraction that's always been forbidden. Sexy Ava Denotti is all woman, and he wants her- in every position possible, and he wants her bad.

The two kicked to the curb ex's prove the end of one relationship can often be the beginning of something so much better. And falling in love can be a sweet revenge.

My Thoughts

With A Twist is an enjoyable read.
Light and fun with a great lead character we can all relate to in some way.
Newly divorced, and a little overweight, Ava is having a 'woe is me' moment at her bar on her 40th birthday, when super sexy, tattooed, younger hunk Shane approaches her. And he knows what he wants-Ava.
I really enjoyed the banter between Ava and Shane, and the sex was quite good.
At only 40 pages long don't expect the characters to be fully fleshed out and apart from the sex there's not a hell of a lot of story there but sometimes that's just what your looking for.
My only real complaint is that they both professed there love for each other after only a matter of days.
A quickie 4 star read ;]

May 9, 2011

Book Review: Laird of Darkness by Nicole North

*I hate spoilers in a review and therefore will only include the blurb for this book and refrain from giving away anything else for the benefit of those who may still have this on their TBR piles.*
Laird Of Darkness
Nicole North
Published 21/03/2011
Source: Publisher via NetGalley

Half-Fae Laird Duncan MacDougall is cursed. His nights are haunted by Otherworld creatures sent to kill him. The only way to stop them is to possess the magic bow currently in the hands of his enemy half brother, Kinnon MacClaren. In desperation, Duncan plans to take MacClaren's bride-to-be hostage and exchange her for the bow.
Lady Alana Forbes has never met her intended, but she hopes he is handsome-and a good lover, for Alana is no innocent virgin. On her way to Castle Claren, Alana and her escorts are intercepted, and she is kidnapped by a man with extraordinary abilities-and every attribute she longs for in a mate.
Duncan didn't expect the woman he thought of as a mere pawn to be so beautiful, and so arousing. Alana is drawn to him as well-but Duncan still needs the bow, and Alana is betrothed to another. How far will Alana go to save the life of the man she's come to love?

My Thoughts

This novella by Nicole North was a good read and definitely had some good sex scenes but for me I found the story lacking.
I wanted to know more about Half-Fae Laird Duncan MacDougall and his family, especially the so called evil brother who he is at war with but has never met, but it was just little bits and pieces peppered throughout with no clear background story.
I also would have liked the seemingly miraculous healing powers of Lady Alana Forbes to have been explained more or tapped into more. There seemed to be so many more possibilities to really fill out this story into something so much more than it was.
Like I said, a good read but not a lot of substance.
2.5 stars.

May 6, 2011

Book Review and Giveaway: Wild by Aprilynne Pike

*I hate spoilers in a review and therefore will only include the blurb for this book and refrain from giving away anything else for the benefit of those who may still have this on their TBR piles.*

Wild (aka Illusions)
Aprilynne Pike
Source: Won

Laurel hasn't seen Tamani since she begged him to let her go last year. Though her heart still aches, Laurel is confident that David was the right choice.
But just as life is returning to normal, Laurel discovers that a hidden enemy lies in wait.
Once again, Laurel must turn to Tamani to protect and guide her, for the danger that now threatens Avalon is one that no faerie thought would ever be possible. And for the first time, Laurel cannot be sure that her side will prevail.

My Thoughts

I was lucky enough to win a signed copy from the author herself (yay!) and I eagerly watched the mailbox for its arrival. Thanks to some speedy international carrier pigeons it only took a week.

From the very first page I was enthralled.
And it all seems so perfect-Laurel is with David, her best friend Chelsea is happy with her boyfriend Ryan, and they're seniors in high school.
I was tingling with anticipation. What could go wrong? When would the excitement begin? Where was Tamani?
I needn't have worried because guess who showed up before the end of the third page? Tamani.
Tamani. Tamani. Tamani.
I am totally, completely, eternally, in complete and utter love with Tamani!!
At every turn of the page I was transported into the body of a giggling teenage girl when Tamani was around. I became teenage marshmallow!!
In fact I find all of Aprilynne Pike's characters to be real, like-able, and interesting. Both the 'real' world and the 'faerie' world that the author has created are vibrant, exciting and addictive.
Full of interesting characters, both the ones we already love, and the ones who may now drive us insane, and twists and turns abound, Wild is an exceptional continuation of a fascinating story.
I really want to say so much more but don't want to ruin it for you with spoilers, it is really, REALLY good.
Definitely a 5 star read. 

The Giveaway

Okay so as I earlier stated I won my copy of this book and with it I received some gorgeous swag which I'm happy to share.
So I have 2 'runners up' prizes of bracelets, pins and more and 1 'main' prize winner will receive the swag AND a paperback copy of SPELLS, the second book in this series.
To enter tell me this.....If you could choose which flower grew from your back, what flower would it be and why?
Leave your answer in the comments section with an email address for me to contact you should you win. Contest will end 25th May 2011 and IS international.

May 2, 2011

Book Review: Spartan Heart Part 2 by Kristine Cheney

Spartan Heart
Kristine Cheney
Source: Purchased from Astraea Press


Sent away to college in America, Evangeline swore she would never return to England. Anger loses its value when tragedy forces her home to assume ownership of the family's beloved Greco-Roman museum.
Placing a foolish, drunken kiss on a Greek statue in the museum's basement, Evangeline unknowingly frees a Spartan prince from an evil oracle's curse. Suddenly, her lonely life is invaded by the rakish man with knowing emerald green eyes who never eats or sleeps, and seems to know her every thought and feeling.
Falling in love is dangerous, especially when it's with a man who has already been claimed by the bitter oracle Demona. From the moment of her kiss, Evangeline is swept into Dorien's world of mystery, danger, and passion. The Oracle's fury only mounts as they unravel Demona's darkest secrets, but not before Demona finds out about their unborn half-breed immortal twins.

Demona uses her knowledge of the future to manipulate, but sometimes love has a will, and a heart...of its own.


I reviewed Part 1 back in March and you can read it HERE 

Well Part 2 was everything I was hoping for and much, much more.
I really don't want to give away any spoilers but OMGosh you are going to love the other Spartans that make an appearance (we are talking H.O.T!!!)
The second installment was well thought out and I felt it flowed a little better than Part 1.
The characters were richer and fuller and I connected with them more.
Lots of plot twists and turns, angst and sorrow, and a tear jerking HEA. (Yes some tears were shed!!)

Spartan Heart Part 2 was overflowing with all the right stuff that goes into a great story, and therefore gets a well deserved 5 star rating from me  ~<;]


First Monday Of The Month Giveaway: Mystery Month of May

So its the first Monday of the month...and my Birthday tomorrow...and I've been lucky enough to win some books just recently...and I'm feeling generous...and really...who doesn't love a giveaway???

So why not?!

Here are the rules.
There are no hoops to jump through.
No 'liking' or 'following' or 'tweeting' involved (unless you really want to)
No essays and/or short story writing required.

Just leave your email address in the comments below and on the last Monday of the month (May 30th) I'll pull a name out of a hat...yes I'll do it old school, no randomizer here, and email the winner. 

The winner will then have 24hrs to email me back with their snail mail details and I'll send them their prize. 

And the prize??........well I haven't got that far yet that's why its called the 'Mystery Month Of May Giveaway'......but it will be worth your while!!!!

So you've got nothing to loose...and a mystery prize to gain.............

Oh and it IS international:)

Cursed Moon Citrus Tart for Merrie Destefano's FEAST

Merrie Destefano is having a delicious recipe competition happening on her blog here

Here is my entry.....


2 eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup melted butter
1 teaspoon lemon rind
1 teaspoon orange rind
1/2 cup dessicated coconut
1/4 cup flour (plain)
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup orange juice
1/2 cup milk

Put ALL ingredients in a food processor (or use a stick blender) and combine until smooth.
Pour into a greased 18cm pie plate and bake in a preheated oven at 180 degrees Celsius/350 Fahrenheit/Gas mark 4 for approx 35-45mins or until firm and golden.
Allow to cool and serve sprinkled with icing sugar.

Super easy and scrumptiously yummy!!!!!
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