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Always Another Book in the TBR

Love to read, but I love to also just buy. Sometimes I think my hobby is buying more than reading.
Her Favorite Temptation - Sarah Mayberry Sweet book.
I love Ms. Mayberry's writing. She always has different scenarios, evocative scenes.

Not much to say other than well written, as always.

It is a quick read, but a good read.

Insert any other cliché "review" buzz word/phrase here.

Willing suspension of disbelief does have to be fully engaged and operable, though.
It All Started With a Lima Bean (Intertwined Hearts, #1) - Kimi Flores Okay. A 99 cent book. When will I learn to read an excerpt.

So here is the deal. This book has overblown descriptions, too much detail on the minutiae, and just a lack of basic punctuation. That is the bottom line. I used the rest of this review just to let it all go. Don't feel you will get much more out of the rest of this.

This book had it all, a cute title, a reasonable price for a new-to-me author, and one of my favorite tropes. No reason not to click it, right?
Silly me.

From the very first page, I had my doubts.
It starts with a death scene, a death scene of the wife, mother, and daughter. All one person. Everybody was there. They let the future widower go last to sit and talk his wife. All I could think of was, well, what if she hadn't lasted through all the good-byes and he missed his chance.

It was overblown, overly dramatic, and just so so not right.
Then there is a nightmare scene. Again, wrong on many levels. The nightmare victim apparently has lungs still filled with the "gut wrenching [not gut-wrenching] hospital scent lingering in them."

Then as he gets out of bed, "Following a low grunt, Caleb ran strong fingers through his thick messy black hair."
Made me wonder if the grunt was a quick little grunt or if the grunt was slow enough Caleb could catch up with him. But goodness, if you have thick messy black hair [as opposed to thick, messy, black hair, or even thick, messy black hair] it probably makes it easier to follow that grunt.

Caleb, with his soon-to-be-combed hair, can't just walk down a hall into a child's bedroom. He must walk down a "dark wood floored hallway [I will let you hyphenate that one as you will] into the pink princess room." Makes me wonder if there was a pink princess motif available at Home Depo and if the pink princess has purple and blue princess friends.

In the pink princess room we meet the plot moppet Madison. I love plot moppets. They can be as cute, sweet, precocious as they want to be. This one, on the little I read about her, has the capacity to be the cutest, sweetest, most precocious plot moppet of all.

Next we get to meet Abby, who has a cozy bed and enjoys waking up to Maroon 5. Yeah. I don't know that much about my BFF. She uses the backs of her hands to rub her eyes, and she wears cherry colored [not cherry-colored] slippers. One of her favorite events of the year is the first day of school. Well, my BFF happens to be a teacher, and I do know that she wouldn't say the same.

Although the descriptions threw me out of the book momentarily (really, I don't have a dog or cat but maybe a grunt would be easier to deal with) I kept reading because, gee, an adorable title and a plot moppet, I just couldn't tear myself away.

So our sweet and cheerful heroine dresses in black leggings, leaves her Spanish-style [yay, a hyphen; so excited] bungalow, stopping along the way to let the local tomcat rub his white fur over her dark covered [dang, I miss the hyphen already] legs, and hops into her forest green VW Jetta.

Seriously, at this point I am wondering if there will be a quiz later (she is a teacher after all), and I need to start taking notes.

So we get to the school and there is stuff going on that I can't figure out. Our girl Abby goes out to meet and greet the students, parents, and grandparents in the schoolyard. What? She sees people she knows from the community she fondly grew up in (trying to figure out how one fondly grows up).

So just as a happenstance Abby knows the plot moppet's grandparents. Yeah, go figure. Abby greets them, plops down on Madison's level, and Madison proceeds to give the e-Harmony snippet on her dad. "He likes to play in the ocean, watch hockey and give butterfly kisses."
For those who loathe the Oxford comma, this book is for you.

Anyway, Abby falls flat on her bottom upon her first sighting of Caleb. After she dusts off her "thinly covered behind" (yeah, I wondered if she thought through the whole leggings idea adequately) she hands out nametags and looks at the hockey logo on his shirt.

By this time, my finger is hovering over the delete button. As I am only 3% in, I decide to wait.

There are more punctuation issues and a situation she brings up about the siblings and nephew of a guy she used to date. Frankly, I still don't understand what that was about. I realized I didn't care enough to read it again to try to figure it out.

Blah, blah, blah, I read another 1%.

The school day is over, and Abby goes to the yard with the kids to dismiss them. While in the yard, Abby spots her BFF with a large bouquet of flowers who greets her with a kiss on the cheek to celebrate the first day of school. Seems odd to me. Maybe I should be greeting my BFF every first day of school with a bouquet of flowers. I will skip the kiss part. Makes me feel like I am letting my BFF down. Then reference is made to the BFF "pulling up the corner of her lips and winking." So many things wrong with that, I don't know where to start.

So to continue to celebrate the first day of school, the BFF rubs "her hopeful palms together" in entreaty to go out for Italian that night. Hopeful palms have no place in a schoolyard.
Abby agrees to the dinner after she "brought her shoulder to her chin while smiling again." Hmmm, sounds to me like Abby is in full-on flirt mode. Starting to get a different vibe here. A little threesome in the works, maybe. That is further confirmed by the BFF saying, "It's a date, then. I'll pick you up at 5:30."

So the BFF gets in her flower delivery truck and leaves. The BFF is a florist? Okay, that would have been a bit of a descriptor that would have set a different scene.

4% in and I am done.

Sorry. Overblown, not edited by someone who actually knows grammar, and just paints too many pictures that don't need painting. Strong Harlequin-of-the-seventies vibe, and not in a good way.
The Derby Girl (Getting Physical, #2) - Tamara Morgan Sorry. Just didn't get this.

Stopped reading at 36% because nothing was happening but a lot of thinking, strategy (for what I am not sure), and setups for something sometime, I think.

Anyway, it was technically written well, no typos.

I loved the idea of the roller derby queen and the Dr. Heartthrob, but then, nada. Seemed to try to be a psychological romance, or not. I don't know.

Just didn't get it.

Fifth Grave Past the Light (Charley Davidson, #5)

تأملات فى الحب والحياة - مصطفى محمود Well written. Well narrated.

Interesting twists at the end.

They are getting more graphic, it seems, in the violence toward Charley, from the living as well as the dead.

Leashed (Going to the Dogs, #1)

Leashed (Going to the Dogs, #1) - Zoe  Dawson Typical short story. Rushed.

Everybody was stunningly good looking, brilliant, sweet, and well dressed.

Felt like an '80s genre book, lots of names dropped as far as designers, car names, etc.

Hero is carrying a burden, but he has just dealt with it and is now in the right place for "the one" and, dang it, she just happens to be living next door. Go figure.

I assume this was just a setup for the stories of the three perfect friends introduced in this book.

Not a good intro because I was bored silly.

Leaving the Comfort Cafe

Leaving the Comfort Cafe - Dawn DeAnna Wilson Sweet book.
A coming-of-age tale times two.

The main characters, really, were not so likeable, not necessarily people you would seek to be friends with. One was too needy and one was just too not interesting.

But they grew in the story, you learned of them in the story, and in the end, you could see yourself sitting down with them for a meal or two and thoroughly enjoying their company.

It was beautifully written in spots, evocative of places and feelings. But there were just some issues I had with understanding some things that were going on.

The story starts and focuses on Austin. His relationship with a woman named Kerry comes to the fore. Well, I thought his relationship with Kerry was a romantic situation, boyfriend-girlfriend going their separate ways on divergent career paths. Austin is quite hurt that Kerry did not ask him to go to NYC with her to realize her dreams. Then later in the story is becomes obvious that they were just friends, former neighbors. So why would Kerry ask someone from down the hall to move with her, to uproot their life.

There are other similar issues throughout the book where I made assumptions based on the "facts" given and then I found out my "facts" were nothing at all. Yeah, that was on me, but it seemed almost too disingenuous at times.

And there were editing/content issues. I would just like to say that for now and ever more the words are "all right." There is not a word "alright." It is not like "all together" and "altogether." It is two words, always two words. Yeah, I know, pet peeves will kill us all. And then "it's" is a contraction of "it is." It is not a possessive. All it the curse of the apostrophe that can also show possessive, but, again, "its" is now and forever more possessive.

Witches in Flight (WitchLight Trilogy #3)

Witches in Flight (WitchLight Trilogy #3) - Debora Geary Excellent end to the trilogy. You know, in thinking about it, this was really an end to the serialization. And I hate serials.
But as always, Ms. Geary gave me characters to care about in situations just a bit out of the norm so I am okay with serializations in this aspect.

A little bit rougher on language. Nothing horrible or offensive or edgy, just not the clean clean clean I think of her books as being.

Just a sweet end to a sweet story.

The Pink Pearl

The Pink Pearl - Suzette Marquis Yeah. So I am not sure what this was.

I read it because I loved the book by this author under a different name, [bc:Geoducks Are for Lovers|17838847|Geoducks Are for Lovers|Daisy Prescott|http://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/books/1367495870s/17838847.jpg|24962477].

I saw that this was really short, but I kind of thought -- well, I don't know what I thought.

It is a short, very short little tale, maybe erotic, but not really. There were a lot of double entendres, lots of smirking, some fierce sword play (okay, so I am doing the entendres, too).

There is some kind of nonexplanation explanation at the end as to what this is. But I still don't get it.

The writing is competent, the story is thin and farfetched. A good time was had by some. This could be a lead in to a whole book, or a piece of writing that was culled as the only decent part of a half-written pirate historical that was hiding under her bed.

There are typos (really shouldn't be typos in such a short book) and editing issues. Whatever.

I think we got to enjoy an inside joke or some sort, without being told there was a joke. It was free so I am not crying foul. Just seems kind of silly.

31 Healthiest Fruit Sorbets

31 Healthiest Fruit Sorbets - Pawel Malczewski Thorough. Gives a lot of information, whether you want it or not.
Figs are used in a lot of the recipes. Figs are not easily found in my area.

But great-looking recipes that I can't wait to try.

It is obvious the author is passionate about food and health.
Glad to have these recipes in my arsenal.
This was an Amazon freebie for me.

Witches Under Way

Witches Under Way - Debora Geary Lovely addition to a lovely series.
I keep waiting to get tired of these, but so far I am still in love.

It seems as if nothing is happening, but oh, so very much is.

Elsie and Lizard are continuing their journey to self-knowledge and it is a fun journey to travel with them.

These books are just as "clean" as all the others.

And yeah, the willing suspension of disbelief is fully engaged. But hey, it is a book about a town of witches and NICE people. Mayberry and Bewitched combined.

There were a few more typos/editing issues in this than I am used to. But I don't remember ever finding one before and I think there were four or five in this one. Nothing to take you out of the story at all.

Like You Read About

Like You Read About - Mela Remington So I enjoyed this book. I cared about the characters. I cared what happened to the story. I cared. Period. And that is what made me keep reading, because, oh my goodness, sometimes I wanted to just walk away.

While this is a "sweet" book, it is not a "clean" book. There is graphic language and graphic sex. While that does not impact my enjoyment of a book, it does impact the enjoyment of others so I like to put that out there.

It is not your typical "girl lusts after boy, boy gets a clue, boy decides to investigate, boy likes what he finds out, boy falls madly in love, boy or girl has big MIS, boy/girl overcome the big MIS and true love prevails."

There is no big MIS. I love a story without that artificial big misunderstanding. There are issues, yes, that could become the big MIS; but as rational, older young adults (does that make sense), they make it work and deal with it. This is a story about two people who care for each other, lust for each other, and act in mature, responsible ways. (Yeah, I did have issues with the workplace romance aspect. She is responsible for handing out money, and she dished it out to his department in a big way at the very beginning of the story.)

I liked that her weight issues were a rational part of the book. This almost seemed like a paean to Weight Watchers at times. She lived the lifestyle, not the diet. It was refreshing to see this book didn't become all about the weight.

Why the two stars? Because this is a book I paid money for. If I pay money for a book, I want some professionalism. This felt like I was reading a first or second rough of a talented author.

Run-on sentences were rife. There would be three and four sentences within the area between the previous and next periods. This was not once or twice but throughout. The further you got in the book, the worse it got. At times it was dizzying.

There were wrong words, missing words, repeated words. There were tenses changing back and forth three and four times in sentences. We are in the present, then we are in the past and, dang, here we are in the present again. They mentioned a blackberry and a Blackberry, but never a BlackBerry.
There was "unrequired lusting." There was at least one "alright."

I also really didn't understand the need to have the book happen in 2008/2009 (Amazon says the book was published in 2013, but it may have been written in the 2008-2009 time range). It is not so long ago that the time becomes a "character" in the story, but it was just long enough for me to feel compelled to fact check song dates and gay marriage legalization dates and such. The constant reference to the year in the e-mails took me out of the story almost as much as the punctuation and grammar errors.

While my kids assure me no one else cares, to me the errors cited above do significantly impact my enjoyment of my reading material. It was only because I cared about the crafted story that I continued to read the book, so kudos to Ms. Remington for that.

50 Shades Of Kale

50 Shades Of Kale - Jennifer Iserloh,  Drew Ramsey Good. Carried the theme all the way through the book. That was a bit annoying, but well done.

Excellent recipes but... some just seemed like, "Here is my fajita recipe, so I am going to throw in some kale."

But they also had chocolate chip kale cookies and some nice smoothies.

The recipes are thorough with ingredient descriptions, steps to make and nutritional info. Very nice indeed.

Good Eating's Seasonal Salads: Fresh and Creative Recipes for Spring, Summer, Winter and Fall

Good Eating's Seasonal Salads - Chicago Tribune This is a compilation of recipes from the Chicago Tribune.
Some look great, some not so great.

I was just looking for some salad inspiration.

My biggest quibble with the book (and I think it is only in e form) is that it looks like it was just a cut and paste from the files of the paper.

Most of the recipes have nutritional info, but some does not. This is a bit irritating. All or nothing, guys.

But it was a freebie so I feel petty pointing out the lack of consistency.

Kale Recipes: Delicious Recipes Using This Superfood To Keep The Whole Family Healthy!

Kale Recipes: Delicious Recipes Using This Superfood To Keep The Whole Family Healthy! - Ready Recipe Books Excellent.

Just getting into kale but I have a lot of questions.

This book helped answer a number of my questions.
Yes, the type of kale matters.

Some of the recipes were rather obvious, but others (like dates/almonds wrapped in kale) were not. Not sure I will go the date/kale route, but it makes you think.

Well written and very understandable. No condescension at all. Some "healthy" cookbooks preach. Nary a sermon was had.

This was an Amazon freebie.

132+ Delicious Salads, Dressings and Dips (Gabrielle's FUSS-FREE Healthy Veg Recipes)

132+ Delicious Salads, Dressings and Dips (Gabrielle's FUSS-FREE Healthy Veg Recipes) - Gabrielle Raiz Excellent primer.

I love salads, but I need some help to get away from the lettuce/tomato/carrots/cheese rut.

This book opened my eyes and imagination.

Well written, well edited and a great setup.
I love the way certain recipes are given with the salad "recipes," but then are recapped at the end.

Written by a vegetarian/almost vegan, but it is not preachy. "Flesh" food is even mentioned a time or two.

Will look for others by this author.
I think this was an Amazon freebie for me.

Witches on Parole (WitchLight Trilogy #1)

Witches on Parole - Debora Geary Sweet book. Excellent start to a series.

As with all her books, Ms. Geary has taken the time to do it right, good writing skills, consistent world building, and excellent editing.

Ms. Geary takes the Modern Witch/Witch Central world and tweaks it just a bit.

But it is still a sweet, wholesome place that you would love to find and hang out in. If only I could find a group of people who always have cookies on hand and are always ready to share.