Monday, June 30, 2008

Up Till Now By William Shatner

Genre: Autobiography

I’ve been a fan of Shatner’s for a long time, but my fandom resurfaced in the last few years with his appearance on Boston Legal, which happens to be my current favorite show (I adore James Spader). So, I was quite interested in reading his book. Some of his stories I’ve heard on his guest appearances on talk shows, but mainly there were some new stories I hadn’t heard before.

He starts from his childhood days in Canada and goes to his current role on Boston Legal. He talks about the unexpected death of his wife. It was a very sad death and she was a very troubled woman. I can’t even imagine the pain he must have gone through. She was an alcoholic and he found her dead in their swimming pool. So tragic.

Shatner doesn’t hesitate to talk about some of his less than happy experiences such as the above death of his wife, his failed marriage prior to that, and his “not so cordial” relationships with his former Star Trek co-stars. The book is filled with laughter, as well as a few tears. He’s an excellent storyteller and he’s quite the colorful character. I hope I have half as much energy when I’m his age as he does.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

The Sunday Salon

The Sunday

It's a beautiful Sunday here - it's 87 degrees and the sun is shining. This is after a week of rain, clouds and thunderstorms.

I started the weekend by finishig "Catnapped" by Gabriella Herkert. It was good. Now, I'm actually juggling two books, which is something I never do. I never ever read more than one book at a time.

My next book had to be William Shatner's autobiography "Up Till Now" because I got it from the library and it's due back. However, I had to go to the beauty parlor yesterday and I didn't want to lug a hardcover with me. So, I took the second book in G.A. McKevett's Savannah Reid Mystery series "Bitter Sweets" and now I can't put it down! I love it. I seem to be going back and forth between both books, but I was right the first time - I don't like reading more than one book at a time. LOL

I hope everyone has a great week!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Catnapped by Gabriella Herkert

“An Animal Instinct Mystery”

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Legal investigator, Sara Townley, is at the bottom of the totem pole at Abercroft, Hamilton and Sterns, which means all meaningless cases are assigned to her. Sara’s new case seems easy enough, she must find a cat who recently received a multi-million dollar inheritance. Sounds pretty easy, until she is faced with a dead body and she seems to be the prime suspect.

Things go from bad to worse when she arrives home to find her new husband, Navy Seal Connor cooking her apartment. She only knew him for a week when they married in Las Vegas, but she didn’t expect him to follow her home. When Connor realizes the case of the missing wealthy cat turns dangerous, he intends to never let her out of his sight again.

This is the first book of a new series of cozy mysteries, “An Animal Instinct Mystery”. Catnapped is a promising beginning, although it takes a bit of time to get to know the characters and the plot twists take so many different turns that it’s sometimes hard to keep up with them. One of the best developed characters is Sara’s best friend Russ. I adored this character immediately and I do hope he makes another appearance. My only disappointment is that I love mysteries with cats involved and this cat was hardly involved at all. He was a very minor part of the story, but it was a well-paced mystery anyway. The next book in the series is “Doggone” and I will keep an eye open for it.

Completing this book also means I can cross off another book from my Amateur Sleuth Reading Challenge – that’s always a good thing 

Friday, June 27, 2008

Summer Reading Extravaganza Day 5: Oh the Places You'll Go! With a Book!

Our final topic is books that transport you. It’s hard to take a trip with rising gas prices so thank God we can travel through reading! What are some of your favorite books that transport you to a new place?

Mmmmmmmmmmmm....I don't have one favorite book that transports me, it's more like I have a genre that transports. I love western historicals and I love to be transported back to the old west. Through my books it feels like such an adventurous time. Some of my favorite westerns...

The Midwife's Secret by Kate Bridges

The Doctor's Wife by Cheryl St. John

The other setting I love is any small town that is featured in my cozy mysteries. Probably because I'm from New York, I just love to be transported to a small town where everybody knows your name :)

Some of my favorite series:

Murder is Binding by Lorna Barrett - A great town with a whole street dedicated to different types of bookstores! What could be better?

The Scumble Rivery Mystery series by Denise Swanson - Always a favorite of mine and I always enjoy re-visiting this small town with their crazy cast of characters.

Friday's Feast


What is the weather like today where you live?

It was overcast, some drizzle and kind of humid.


On a scale of 1-10 with 10 being highest, how career-minded are you?

3 - I wish I didn't have to work :)


What type of window coverings do you have in your home? Blinds, curtains, shutters, etc.?


Main Course

Name something that instantly cheers you up.

A good book.


How many times do you hit the snooze button on a typical morning?

Only once or twice.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Summer Reading Extravaganza Day 3: Magazines!

Summer Reading Extravaganza Day 3: Magazines!
June 25th, 2008

We all love books, but how about magazines? Magazines are perfect for the shorter flight or poolside (so your book doesn’t get wet), don’t you think? What are your favorite magazines or what magazines would you recommend for book lovers? Or is there a magazine we should stay away from? Our thoughts are below, but we can’t wait to read yours!

For me, I end up "collecting" magazines with the intentions of reading them and then I never get around to reading them. So, they end up in the garbage. When I do read them, I love magazines like People and Entertainment Weekly. I'm so starstruck! LOL I love all the news about movie stars. The other type of magazines I like are about cats such as Cat Fancy. I like to get tips on raising my kitties :)

But, like I said, I wind up throwing more out than actually reading them. What about the rest of you? Do you like reading magazines?

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Monday, June 23, 2008

Summer Reading Extravaganza Day 1: Fun Summer Reads!

The first day of the Summer Reading Extravaganza and the first question is a fun one - What’s your favorite beach read or what’s in your beach bag? So, here it goes...

I haven't read it yet, but the one book I'm really looking forward to reading is Janet Evanovich's new Stephanie Plum book - Fearless Fourteen. I love these books and no summer would be complete without a new Stephanie Plum book. With my towering TBR, I have no idea exactly when I'll get to it, but I will get to it!

Next up...Sail by James Patterson. James Patterson is a favorite of mine and this book sounds so good. He and Janet Evanovich are the two authors I get in hardcover. I can't wait for their books to come out.

A couple more books that sound like they would be fun to add to your beach bag, but I haven't read yet...all are in my TBR, though...

Goodnight Nobody by Jennifer Weiner
Mrs. Perfect by Jane Porter
Twilight by Stephenie Meyer

Some books that I've already read that would be great beach reads...

Catnapped by Gabriella Herkert
A Soldier Comes Home by Cindi Meyers
Strike Zone by Kate Angell
Deep Dish by Mary Kay Andrews

What books would you recommend this summer?

Sunday, June 22, 2008

The Sunday Salon

The Sunday

Happy Sunday Everyone!

This week I finished and reviewed A Soldier Comes Home by Cindi Myers. It's a Harlequin Superromance and another book I can cross off my Harlequin/Superromance challenge. It was a good book and dealt with some very realistic issues about the war and the effects of the family members left behind. It reminded me a bit of my new favorite TV show Army Wives.

I started Catnapped by Gabriella Herkert. It's a mystery that I'm reading as part of the Amateur Sleuth Reading Challenge and for my cat/cozy mystery group on Shelfari. I just started, but it seems good so far.

Hope everyone is having a great Sunday.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

A Soldier Comes Home by Cindi Myers

Genre: Romance

Harlequin Super Romance #1498, June 2008-06-21

Captain Ray Hughes returns from a tour of duty in Iraq to find that his wife unceremoniously dumped their son on his parents’ doorstep, while running off to be with another soldier. She, also, left him with no furniture or truck. The house is cold and his son, TJ, is missing his mother. Ray and TJ have quite a bit of work ahead of them as they try to develop a relationship together. The young child tries to come to grips with the absence of his mother. Ray is trying to figure out what to do the next time he is deployed, which could be sooner than he thought.

Chrissie Evans lost her husband in the war. She vowed to never fall in love with another soldier, but Ray and his son tear at her heartstrings. Desperately she tries to put her fears aside to help these two lonely people.

When Ray’s estranged wife turns up, demanding custody of TJ, they all try to put their own feelings aside for the good of the child. However, their own feelings always seem to get in the way.

This book is very well-written and touching. It deals with the real issue of war, deployment and how soldiers deal with their loved ones who are left at home. These are characters the reader will care for and fall in love with. This was the first book I ever read by this author, but I’ll be looking for more her stories.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Friday's Feast


If you could live on another continent for 1 year, which one would you choose?



Which browser do you use to surf the Internet?

Internet Explorer


On a scale of 1-10 (with 10 being highest), how much do you know about the history of your country?

Mmmm...I'll say about 6 or 7.

Main Course

Finish this sentence: Love is…



Have you ever been in or near a tornado?


Monday, June 16, 2008

The Friendly Book Nook’s Summer Reading Extravaganza

June 23rd-27th The Friendly Book Nook will be having a Summer Reading Extravaganza! Each day we will have a topic about summer reading that we encourage you to post about on your blog! It should be a great chance to get a lot of ideas for books to read over the summer as well as ways to encourage your children to spend some of their time reading.There are also prizes!

Through regular participation you will have the chance to win one of the following:

1) Inspirational Fiction Lot: Includes Skizzer by A.J. Kiesling, A Mending at the Edge by Jane Kirkpatrick, In the Dead of Winter by Nancy Mehl, To Trust a Friend by Lynn Bullock, and a special cross bookmark made by Rabuna Fi.
2) A brand new signed copy of Stealing Athena by Karen Essex.
3) A ten dollar Amazon gift card!

If you would like to donate some prizes to add to these, please contact Amy at thefriendlybooknook AT gmail DOT com.

Here’s how to be eligible to win one of these prizes:
For bloggers:

1) Post a message on your blog inviting your readers to join in the Summer Reading Extravaganza. (required)

2) Participate in the Summer Reading Extravaganza. For each day you participate, you will receive an entry!

3) For a bonus entry, write a wrap-up post at the end of the week linking to your favorite posts from the week.

4) Add the button to your sidebar for another bonus entry!

For non-bloggers:

1) Participate by leaving comments on participants blogs. For each comment you will receive an entry.

2) Send an email at the end of the week to thefriendlybooknook AT gmail DOT com with links to the posts you commented on.

Thanks you all for helping us make it the best it can be!

Friday's Feast

I'm a bit late, but here's mine from June 13th (aka Friday the 13th)

Do you consider yourself to be an optimist or a pessimist?


What is your favorite color of ink to write with?


How often do you get a manicure or pedicure? Do you do them yourself or go to a salon and pay for them?

I haven't had it done in awhile.

Main Course
Have you ever won anything online? If so, what was it?

I've won books online.

In which room in your house do you keep your home computer?

The bedroom

Sunday, June 15, 2008

The Greek Tycoon’s Virgin Mistress by Chantelle Shaw

Harlequin Presents Extra #7, May 2008-06-15

Genre: Romance

Handsome millionaire Damon Kouvaris fell in love with Anna the moment he saw her. He intends to sleep with the woman and get her out of his system. His feelings were purely sexual and he had no intention of anything more permanent, but when he sees her again, he plans to make her a permanent fixture in his life.

Supermodel Anneliese Christiansen is filled with ghosts from her past. She tries hard to make a life for herself, but in the area of romance, her demons just refuse to go away. She resists the undeniable charms of Damon, but there’s only so much resisting a girl can do.

This book was a light, fast-paced read. My only problem was Anna denied her feelings a bit too much for my liking and her insecurities were sometimes a bit much. However, it didn’t stop me from rooting for these two to get together. I fell in love with Damon immediately – arrogance and all!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

P.S. I Love You

Has anyone read the book and seen the movie P.S. I Love You? I read the book a couple of months back and finally saw the movie today. I thought the premise was the same, but the characters were a bit different.

In the book, the heroine had a huge family. In the movie she just had a sister and a mother. In the book, the heroine's mother loved Jerry, the heroine's husband and in the movie she didn't. It was differences like these, but overall, I did enjoy both the movie and the book. I didn't particularly like the ending of either the book or the movie. Both kind of left me a bit depressed.

Usually I find myself disliking movies as compared to their book counterparts, but this time I think I enjoyed both equally. Anyone elsesee or read this one?

Friday, June 13, 2008

Murder of a Smart Cookie by Denise Swanson

Genre: Mystery, Cozy

Scumble River is having a huge summer yard sale, but nobody expected murder to be the main attraction - least of all the local school psychologist and amateur sleuth, Skye Dennison. When her former boss is found dead at her family's sale table, she becomes one of the prime suspects.

Tempers fly as the citizens of Scumble River fight over their treasured keepsakes, but when dead bodies begin to turn up, Skey wonders if these valuables could be worth more than she thought. Skye's current boss, who happens to be the mayor and her uncle, not only puts Skye in charge of the yard sale but demands she find out who is responsible for these murders or risk losing her bonus money. Skye takes on the challenge, not only for the money, but to protect her family's good name and her own.

Skye Dennison is a wonderful, strong character who has continued to grow through each book. She always makes me laugh and cry at the same time. This book also left us with a bit of a cliffhanger about Skye's love life which I find intriguing. All the characters in the Scumble River series are crafted to perfection and come alive with each page. After reading a few books, I feel as if I personally know these characters. This is the 7th book in the series and I'm looking forward to the next one.

Now I get to cross one book off my amateur sleuth reading challenge list :)

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Harlequin/Silhouette Reading Challenge

So, I was looking through my huge TBR and saw many Harlequin/Silhouette books. I figured it was time to start reading them instead of just looking at them. LOL I set up a new Harlequin/ Silhouette reading challenge. If anyone would like to join me, just click here. The Harlequin and Silhouette books always bring back my memories of how I first got hooked on reading.

The five books I started my challenge with are.......

1. Danger Zone by Debra Webb(Harlequin Nascar)
2. Boys of Summer by Julie Elizabeth Leto, Kimberly Raye and Leslie Kelly (Harlequin Blaze)
3. A Soldier Comes Home by Cindi Myers (Harlequin Superromance)
4. The Greek Tycoon's Virgin Mistress by Chantelle Shawn (Harlequin Presents)
5. Familiar Lullaby by Caroline Burnes (Harlequin Intrigue)

Monday, June 9, 2008

Cries & Whiskers by Clea Simon

Genre: Mystery

Cries & Whiskers is the latest book in Clea Simon's Theda Krakow Mystery series. I fell in love with Theda and her beautiful kitty Musetta in the first book and I anxiously awaited her return in the third book of the series. I was not disappointed.

You would think a music critic wouldn't find herself being the center of murder mysteries, but that's exactly where Theda winds up. This latest book involves the world of animal activists. When an animal activist is killed in a hit-and-run accident, Theda begins to think there was more to this death than meets the eye.

The victim, Gail Womynfriend, was an extremist. She was not fond of domestic animals and let her feelings be known. Gail made many enemies along the way, so it wasn't out of the realm of possibilities that one of them wanted to do her in, but who?

When her own beloved Musetta is thrown into danger, Theda throws caution to the wind and conducts her own investigation. Nothing will stop her from saving Musetta's life, even if the investigation leads back to her friend Violet, owner of the local animal shelter.

I love this series. The characters are so well-developed and you find yourself caring about them. One of my favorites is Violet. She's a wonderful, quirky character with so much life in her. The story itself is well-plotted, fast-paced, and a great way to spend an afternoon whether you are sitting on the beach or cuddling by a fireplace. I can't wait to re-vist with Theda, Musetta, Violet and all the rest of their friends (and even their enemies!)

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Strike Zone by Kate Angell

Genre: Romance, Comedy

Taylor Hannah was a thrill-seeker. She led adventure-packed tours all the time, but when it came to getting married…she ran scared. The Richmond Rogues pitcher, Brek Stryker, waited at the altar for her, but she never showed. Now, Taylor has faced her commitment issues and wants the sexy pitcher back in her life. There’s only one problem, he’s engaged to another woman.

Brek Stryker was hurt for the last time. Taylor ripped his heart out and stomped on it. He decides to go for a less adventurous, quiet woman like Hilary Talbott. He’s convinced she will be the perfect wife for him. She was safe.

When Brek sees Taylor dressed as the team mascot, the sparks fly all over again. As soon as their eyes meet, the sizzle is back and their chemistry is hotter than ever. Brek tries to fight his feelings, but will he succeed?

I love, love, love this book! I was a bit disappointed in the second book of this series, Curveball, but Strike Zone brought this series roaring back to life. There are actually two romances in this book and both are enjoyable reads. I found myself actually caring about these fictitious characters and not wanting to leave them after the last page was turned. I can’t wait for the next book in this series. Kate Angell hit a homerun with this one!

Mood Meter

wmode="transparent" align="middle" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" >

Saturday, June 7, 2008

What Your Fridge Says About You

What Your Fridge Says About You

You aren't greedy, but you don't really deprive yourself either. You strike a good balance with the stuff you buy.

You are not careful with your money. In fact, you rarely think about how much you are spending.

You don't tend to be a very adventurous person, but you do surprise everyone now and then. You have a bit of a wild side.

You are not very responsible, and you don't pretend to be. Life's too short to do what you're supposed to do.

You are likely single - and a workaholic.

What Kind of Romance Heroine Are You?

Friday, June 6, 2008

Obviously I'm a cat lover and I thought this was a great video clip.

Friday's Feast

This is something I just found and looks like fun...

When you drink soda/pop/coke, do you prefer to drink it from the bottle, a can, or after pouring it into a cup?

I drink diet coke and I prefer a cup. For some reason it just tastes better to me from a cup.

What television show are you willing to stay up late to watch?

Boston Legal, Lost, Prison Break and 24. I love all three and they are probably my favorite shows right now.

Name one person, place, or thing you think of as brilliant.

I'll go with the romantic in me and say my beloved husband.

Main Course
Would you be willing to work 4 10-hour days instead of 5 8-hour days in order to save gas?

Yes, especially because I've always wanted to work 4 days a week instead of 5.

If you were a superhero, what would you call yourself?

I'm at a total loss on this one. I have no idea!

Read more about the Friday's Feast at

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Cat Cross Their Graves by Shirley Rousseau Murphy

Genre: Mystery

Joe Grey is one of my favorite sleuths, ever! This series was my first introduction to mysteries years ago. I’ve had such a growing TBR that I kind of got away from reading this series. This week I went back to it and I’m glad I did.

When beloved movie star Patty Rose is murdered in Molena Point, Joe and his kitty friends Dulcie and Kit get right into the middle of things. Young Kit discovers the body and who the culprit is, but when the cat goes missing, the town of Molena Point goes into a tailspin.

Meanwhile, Dulcie finds a young girl hidden in the basement of the local library. Dulcie fears she might have something to do with Patty Rose’s slaying. Then, the young girl is kidnapped and the police discover hidden graves, which sends the community into shock. Dulcie’s fears continue to grow and the three cats find themselves working overtime to assist the police in this crime.

I know many have problems with stories about talking cats, but not me. I guess, as a cat lover, I see my own cats in these three especially Joe Grey. Joe’s rapport with his human Clyde always leaves me laughing, while Kit and Dulcie’s relationships with their humans are quite touching. Each cat has their own personality and they all drive the unsuspecting police crazy.

Escaping to Molena Point is one of my favorite things to do. The plot moves quickly and the characters are very well developed. The next three books are already in my TBR and I really need to move them up the pile. I let too much time go between books and I’ve missed Joe and his cohorts.