Friday, January 31

Audiobook Review: Prejudice Meets Pride by Rachael Anderson

Prejudice Meets Pride (Meet Your Match, #1)
Author: Rachael Anderson
Narrator:  Laura Princiotta
Title: Prejudice Meets Pride
(Meet Your Match #1)
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Chick Lit
Format: Audiobook
Published:  April 18th 2014
Where I Got It: My shelf (Audible)

After years of pinching pennies and struggling to get through art school, Emma Makie's hard work finally pays off with the offer of a dream job. But when tragedy strikes, she has no choice but to make a cross-country move to Colorado Springs to take temporary custody of her two nieces. She has no money, no job prospects, and no idea how to be a mother to two little girls, but she isn't about to let that stop her. Nor is she about to accept the help of Kevin Grantham, her handsome neighbor, who seems to think she's incapable of doing anything on her own.

Prejudice Meets Pride is the story of a guy who thinks he has it all figured out and a girl who isn't afraid to show him that he doesn't. It's about learning what it means to trust, figuring out how to give and to take, and realizing that not everyone gets to pick the person they fall in love with. Sometimes, love picks them.

A random pick up and find. 

The story follows Emma and Kevin. Emma has worked hard all her life and has a pride to match the state of Texas. When tragedy strikes she moves to Colorado Springs with her nieces to raise them until their dad can come home. She has no job and has no idea how to raise these girls. Then struts in Kevin who thinks she is dumb and can't manage anything. Yes, he wants to help her, but his prejudice may keep her at arm's length. Can these two look past the pride and prejudice? 

So I like that this has small nods to the classic. It isn't really at all a PP variation. The only things that are similar is the pride and prejudice theme and that Kevin is from a rich family while Emma is not. This is more like a PP nod. Which I liked. I do looooove PP variations, don't get me wrong, but this worked well for our characters and story to be a simple nod. 

I wanted to shake Emma and Kevin. GAAAAAAH! Can't you see you are perfect for each other?????? Sure different pay grades and different lifestyles. But you are perfect! *shakes fist*. 

The kids were cute and fun. I felt for them. But I did find it odd they didn't horribly miss their mom. The author explains it away saying that the mom was never home so the girls didn't have much connection to her. Mmm. Okay. Not sure I agree with that. I remember being a kid and having zero memory of my dad and I missed him and questioned all the time. They are 6 and 4...I feel like at least the 6-year-old would be more question-y. BUT what do I know? I am no expert, so maybe that is legit.

I did want more for the ending!!! I felt like there was more to their story. Still some stuff to work out. 

The narrator was good. The kid voices were meh, but I adored her guy voice. It sounded legit and it worked well. 

Overall, this was pretty good. Much better than I thought it was going to be. I questioned a couple of things, but I enjoyed the ride. Cute but with heart. 3 stars. 

- #5 on Bingo sheet

- #4 for Audiobook Challenge

Thursday, January 30

Audiobook Review: Once a Rebel by Mary Jo Putney

Once a Rebel (Rogues Redeemed, #2)Author: Mary Jo Putney
Narrator:  Beverley A. Crick
Title: Once a Rebel
(Rogues Redeemed #2)
Genre: Historical Romance
Format: Audiobook
Published:  May 30th 2017
Where I Got It: My shelf (Audible)

As Washington burns, Callista Brooke is trapped in the battle between her native England and her adopted homeland. She is on the verge of losing everything, including her life, when a handsome Englishman cuts through the violent crowd to claim that she is his. Callie falls into her protector's arms, recognizing that he is no stranger, but the boy she'd once loved, a lifetime ago.

Lord George Gordon Audley had been Callie's best friend, and it was to Gordon she turned in desperation to avoid a loathsome arranged marriage. But the repercussions of his gallant attempt to rescue her sent Callie packing to Jamaica, and Gordon on a one way trip to the penal colony of Australia.

Against all odds, Gordon survived. Finding Callie is like reclaiming his tarnished soul, and once again he vows to do whatever is necessary to protect her and those she loves. But the innocent friendship they shared as children has become a dangerous passion that may save or destroy them

Picked this up for a couple of reasons. One because it is book 2 of this series and second, it fits in with a couple of challenges. 

The story follows Callie and Gordon. The two had been childhood besties. Things happen and they are ripped apart by their evil dads. Years pass and Callie is now a widow living in America where war is coming. Gordon escaped death and is now a spy for England. He is hired by an aristocrat to find their family member in America. No shocker here, but Callie and Gordon are reunited. Could there be love? Or has it been to long?

Been a looooong time since I've done this format of review....I am feeling meh today, so I shall divide and conquer. 

The Good
- Loved Callie and Gordon. They were good characters and their chemistry was instant even when they couldn't see it themselves. 
- I loved our side characters especially Callie's stepdaughter and her beau. I hope we get at least a short story!
 - There was insta-lust of course, but I am glad the love took forever. Lots of wounds and years to get by. 
- The twist at the end got me good! Did NOT see that coming. 
- The narrator was fantastic. 

The Bad and the Ugly
- The historical name dropping was annoying. Yes, Callie...I get it. Your lawyer is the famous Francis Scott Key. Mention it one more time I shall scream. 
- The quick resolutions made the drama seem not so dramatic. All that build-up...sighs. 
- How did those fathers not get in trouble??? I am not happy they pretty much got away with everything. Grrr
- I felt like we really didn't get to see Callie make up with her siblings. There needed to be more there. We spent too much time in America.

I did enjoy this. Some good, some meh. I felt like we needed more resolution on things. We spent too much time in America dealing with that. I WANT MORE! More redemption, please. But I liked the characters and I could be biased. I shall stamp this with 3 stars. 

- #4 on Bingo sheet for Historical Romance

- #3 for Audiobook Challenge

Tuesday, January 28

Time for TV Tuesday: The Mandalorian (season 1)

Recently Finished:

Through: Disney +

The Mandalorian Poster

Okay...I will admit it...I am not crazy about the 'Star Wars' movies and universe. I've watched them and I appreciate them for what they are. Some movies have been fun and exciting. Some? Meh. I didn't anticipate watching this...but...I randomly just put it on and I was hooked. 

So - this does not follow the increasingly annoying Skywalkers (too many movies...let them be at peace and move on to other places in the university and other characters). We have a legit Mandalorian who has become a bounty hunter. He is tasked with bringing in a valuable bounty. Things happen and he becomes attached to the little one. He becomes his father-like figure. 

I love, love Mando. He is badass, but humble and smart. He knows when to go blasting in and when he needs to be more careful. I would want him on my side. Plus...I am with him with being anti-droid/robot. I wouldn't trust them either especially after when we learn what happened to his family and village. Poor guy. 

Loved the baby. Soooo cute. Hopefully we will get more of a glimpse into the history of this creature's species. It has been such a mystery. 

We had a lot of characters that we met along the way. Some good. Some bad. Some a little of both. Some even surprise you! I loved going around to different parts of the universe. It was very fun! It really made me like this universe more. My favorite character was Kuiil and his little friends. I HAVE SPOKEN!!!!

The naming of each episodes were a nice touch. We got to see Mando grow into the Father role and protector. We see the creature get a little stronger with the Force. Bless that little creature!

OoooOOOooooOOOooo those last two episodes. My heart! SOBS! Will not say...but just rip my heart out YOU MONSTERS!!!!!!! SOBBBSSSSSSSSSSSSSS! I am not amused how it ended at all. Nope. Nope. I still love the show, but I wasn't happy. It broke my heart. I will watch season 2 when it comes out...but I will need them to redeem themselves. 

Overall, the show was really good. It made me want to watch more. I hope they follow this path and we go more like this. Boo to the Skywalkers...YAYY to Mandalorian and the baby! 4 stars (sorry - had to take one star away for what they did to my heart). 

Monday, January 27

Blodeuedd's Monday Review: Just Breathe by Cammie McGovern

Narrated by: Caitlin Kelly, Josh Hurley
Length: 9 hrs and 22 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release date: 01-07-20
Language: English
Publisher: HarperAudio
YA fiction
In exchange for an honest review

Like I said, I like YA fic in audio that tugs on the heartstrings. Though I did wish this could have tugged a bit more.

David has cystic fibrosis and is at the hospital. I never really got to know him, sure he is sick, sure he wont live long, but still...

Jamie struggles with depression. Her father killed himself. She was homeschooled and she loves art. Her I do know. I felt so sorry for her.

They meet as she works as a volunteer. They get to know each other, and she takes risk, omg no, do not take risks Jamie!

It gets really hard. I felt for her, and I can't say more because spoilers.

It also got weird as, well, spoilers!

I liked it, I will tell you, no tears. No sadness.

Narrators. I do not think I have listened to either narrator before, but they did well. I enjoyed listening to them.

David Scheinman is the popular president of his senior class, battling cystic fibrosis.

Jamie Turner is a quiet sophomore, struggling with depression.

The pair soon realizes that they're able to be more themselves with each other than they can be with anyone else, and their unlikely friendship starts to turn into something so much more.

But neither Jamie nor David can bring themselves to reveal the secrets that weigh most heavily on their hearts--and their time for honesty may be running out.

Sunday, January 26

Joint Review: Lake Silence by Anne Bishop

Hello all! Blodeuedd and I will be discussing "Lake Silence" by Anne Bishop. Blodeuedd is in red and I am in blue.

Lake Silence (The World of the Others, #1; The Others, #6)

Author: Anne Bishop
Title: Lake Silence
(The World of the Others #1) (The Others #6)
Genre: Urban Fiction, Paranormal, Fantasy
Published:  March 6th 2018 
Format: Audiobook
Pages: 402 

Human laws do not apply in the territory controlled by the Others–vampires, shapeshifters, and paranormal beings even more deadly. And this is a fact that humans should never, ever forget . . .

After her divorce, Vicki DeVine took over a rustic resort near Lake Silence, in a human town that is not human controlled. Towns like Vicki’s have no distance from the Others, the dominant predators that rule most of the land and all of the water throughout the world. And when a place has no boundaries, you never really know what’s out there watching you.

Vicki was hoping to find a new career and a new life. But when her lodger, Aggie Crowe–one of the shapeshifting Others–discovers a dead body, Vicki finds trouble instead. The detectives want to pin the man’s death on her, despite the evidence that nothing human could have killed the victim. As Vicki and her friends search for answers, things get dangerous–and it’ll take everything they have to stay alive

And so we continue, this time without Meg and the gang.

I was sad to see them go….but I am also excited to see more of the world and some other folks. 

When I first read it I was all whaaat?! But now of course I knew that this would be another place, another gang. And I liked it. It was home, and yet it was not.

It was different and I liked it. I thought the cast members were fun. I liked Victoria a lot. She was a lot like Meg in some aspects, but human and abused in a different way. Poor thing. 

Really? I did not feel she was like Meg at all, except for well being prey ;) But Meg at least fought back, while Victoria retreated into herself. I really felt for Victoria. Her husband sure did a number on her.

I think Meg was stronger and was able to fight back near the end. I’m sure if we got more time with good ol’ Vickie she would toughen up. She has a lot of issues to get through. I want her to have a HEA with Julien! I loved them! They were perfect. 

True. I do think she would have toughened up! And yes I hope she gets a happy ending. She deserves it, it will take some time, but they will get there. I know they will.

Yess. I think they will. They both have loads of demons to weed through. But I think they will get together someday. Maybe we’ll see it in a future book. ;)

Nah, I doubt she will come back to them :/

Maybe through passing? Like someone comes to town for whatever reason (like stay at the resort) and we get a glimpse of them and babies? ONE CAN HOPE!

From what I know, she doesn’t even plan on returning to this universe.

Super lame. I like this universe. There is SO much she can do with it! So much story and so many characters. I get wanting to take a break and explore her other ideas/etc, but I think she needs to occasionally give us something here. Even a short story. There are still so many stories and world-building. 

She did return to another world she had not written in ages (I need to try and read that one again, I dnfed it, cos it was effed up.) So I do hope that she will return once again. I LOVE this world. LOVE.
Mmmm I have heard that before (maybe it was you lolll). I am curious though. But yes, I want more from this world. I love it. Honestly….I think the world needs another purge of bad humans. Gather them up because from this it looks like some bad ones got away. SMH. Dumb, dumb humans. Esp that ex of Vickie’s!!! Why would you cause so many issues after what JUST happened to all those towns!?

Gawd! I know. PURGE THE HUMANS. They do not deserve to live. They are so So effing stupid. UGH! They never learn. They always think they can trick the others. But at least there are always good ones too that try to live with The Others, because they know that is the only way to survive.

They are fools. The Elders are always watching. There is something always there. Like those cute little creatures that like carrots (blanking on what they are called)! So freakin’ cute. 

Blanking too. Freaky little buggers. Loved them!
I also, as always, loved the vampires! I guess it was nice not to have wolves around, even though I missed them

Yess loved the vamps!! We got to see such an array of characters and beings. It was such a treat!

I guess I just love the voice Alexandra gives the vamps :D She was amazing, as always.

The narrator is amazing as per normal. She really brings them to life! I honestly can’t imagine these stories without her. She just embodies everyone and everything! So good!

It would not be The Others without Harris! This was actually the first that I listened too and has not read. It was the one that made me want to re-read them by listening

Really? Not surprised to be honest. After reading book 1 I think I would’ve abandoned these. Not because the writing is bad or anything. But just listening to it with her just amplifies the story! 

I liked them, I really liked book 5. But listening made me love them. And that is all cos of Harris! I am glad I listened to book 6 and did not read it. It gave me a whole other experience.

I’m glad you made me listen to them after my reading book 1 ;) I am excited for the next one. 

Told you from the start ;D But I am glad you listened to book 2 and saw how wonderful the world is. I guess on to book 7 then, and I promise you, it will make me MAD. Arfghggg effing humans!

EEEEKKKKK I am nervous. LOL I feel like I’m going to be mad too! D: Dang those humans! Idiots the lot of them. 

Yay, re-listen! It has only been a year or something, lol

Hahaha. I mean - we could do a romance for Valentine’s month. ;) And save that for March! 

Whaat! But you are right, it would be more fitting with a romance. Sobs.

Also, if you have not started this series, then READ IT. LISTEN TO IT. DEVOUR IT!

Hahahaha we can debate and see how we feel ;) I am torn. I wanna get started on the next one...buuut. Sighs. :/
AND YES LISTEN TO IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! SOOOOOOOOO GOOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The end?

The end! :D 

About the Authors
Carole and Blodeuedd have been blogging for a long while now. The last few years the epic duo has been discussing books, watching movies, and even wetting the pen and sharing their stories with the worldwide web. They both love cats, chocolate, and a good story.

Friday, January 24

Book Review: Milk and Honey by Rupi Kauer

Milk and Honey
Author: Rupi Kaur
Title: Milk and Honey
Genre: Nonfiction, Poetry
Format: Paperback
Pages: 204 
Published: November 4th 2014
Where I Got It: My shelf (Walmart)

A collection of poetry and prose about survival. About the experience of violence, abuse, love, loss, and femininity. It is split into four chapters, and each chapter serves a different purpose. Deals with a different pain. Heals a different heartache. 'milk and honey' takes readers through a journey of the most bitter moments in life and finds sweetness in them because there is sweetness everywhere if you are just willing to look

This was a random find at Walmart. I was drawn in by the two little bees on the cover. It made me think of my friend who passed recently and I took it as a sign to pick it up. 

This is a collection of poetry and prose about life, survival, healing, and love. 

First....I will say the first chapter is very dark. It talks about abuse and violence. It broke my heart. I do not know a lot about the author and I really hope she did not have to experience the abuse first hand. So tragic. It does get a touch head's up there. 

The other chapters are less graphic and some proses/poems are very sweet especially about the ones about loving someone and loving oneself. 

I did take a lot from this and found a lot of poems that really hit me in the feelings. There were a few that had me near tears. Some of happiness/love and some of sadness. The blend of these really worked. It really showed how life is not one way or another. It is all of it. The happiness...the sadness. 

Now...let us talk about the controversial format that has all the reviews buzzing on Goodreads. After I finished this I spent so much time on Goodreads seeing what other people thought because it is different for sure and I was curious to see how everyone else felt. There are a lot of negative thoughts on it. Which surprised, but at the same time it didn't. 

There isn't a lot of rhyming. There are some repeating of words, but wasn't how we see poetry normally. Many people ripped this apart. However, I liked it. It worked. Sure it is not classic poetry, BUT anything can be poetry. I guess this comes from my time when I wanted to be an English/History teacher and took a bunch of literature classes. Whenever we talked of poetry, my professors would show us classic forms, but then show us the non-classic formatted poetry. This author isn't the first to do this. She won't be the last. I honestly like it. It is different. It is not everyone's cup of tea. I can for sure see how people don't like it, but I find that it stands out if done right. I do feel this author did a good job at making her and stand out and be different. She really knows how to pull you along and make you see and feel the feelings she wants to express.  

I do think the lack of capital is intriguing. But I feel like it goes hand-in-hand when authors capitalize on everything. It is making a statement. I'm sure if I spent enough time I could write a paper on how this is symbolic of the messages she is sharing. I'm sure there is symbolism there if you dig enough and analyze the work. There is one thing that popped out right away that maybe she was emphasizing with her lower case letters: Lots of the topics here are overlooked...especially the issues of child abuse and women/children being preyed upon by monsters. It is so easy to overlook and ignore because the topic is very unpleasant.    

But yes...I do like the format and it works. I HAVE SPOKEN (sorry for 'The Mandalorian' reference). 

Image result for i have spoken"

Okay - so yes. I liked this collection. I am curious to read more by this author. I highly recommend this if you are looking for some real talk poetry that deals with serious things. Yes, there are some feel-good poems/proses here so it is not all doom and gloom. I loved the honesty. There is good in life, but we can't forget and hide the darker bits. 

I shall stamp this with 5 stars. 

Tuesday, January 21

TMST: One Book or Many?


Tell Me Something Tuesday is a weekly discussion post on Rainy Day Ramblings where Rainy discusses a wide range of topics from books to blogging. 

Do you read/listen to more than one book at a time, or do you give every book your undivided attention? (Courtesy of Roberta@ Offbeat YA)

Many at once of course! I need some variety in my life especially with books. However, I have tried to have some strategy in my madness. I usually try to read one ebook, one paper book, and then listen to one audiobook. However, sometimes I have to put a book to the side (especially if it is taking forever) and focus on something that I need to get done asap. Like a publisher/author or a borrowed book. 

I used to be a undivided attention reader, but that really made life hard and boring. Kuddos to those that can do that though!

Monday, January 20

B's Monday Review: All the Ways We Said Goodbye

By: Beatriz Williams, Lauren Willig, Karen White
Narrated by: Helen Sadler, Nicola Barber, Saskia Maarleveld
Length: 14 hrs and 16 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release date: 01-14-20
Language: English
Publisher: HarperAudio
Historical fiction
In exchange for an honest review

This is a 3 part story, and I did feel that it either could have been longer or sorry one person should have been left out. I wanted more!

In 1914 there is noblewoman Aurelie, from an illustrious line, that keeps a locket with Jean of Arc's blood as a talisman. I did want more of her story. The German's take over her castle, she falls in love with one as she knew him before the war. Though she is just as much playing him for information. It was just over so fast!

I am not sure who narrated her parts, but I liked it.

In 1942 there is Daisy, who clearly married the wrong man. I wanted more of her rise to a resistance fighter. She was so cowed, and then she was a spy.
There is also a German officer around that was also around in 1914...

Again, I do not know who narrated her either, but whoever it was did a good job with this too,.

And then in the 60s Barb goes to find out what her husband did in France during the war. Her part was fine as brief, cos looking for the past is never as interesting as being in the past. She was a good interlude. But oh Barb, I had a hard time with her. Her husband, on to be, got a letter while recuperating and she never showed it to him! So not cool. But then he could just have gone back too...

Again, whoever narrated did well.

I did like the story as a whole, they are all connected, and it is obvious how. Not one aha moment, but maybe it was meant to be like that.

And yes the earlier stories could have been longer and more fleshed out, but the thing is if they had been then the book would have been too heavy.

I did like that there were 3 distinct narrators too so that every woman got to shine in her own light.

France, 1914. As war breaks out, Aurelie becomes trapped on the wrong side of the front with her father, Comte Sigismund de Courcelles. When the Germans move into their family’s ancestral estate, using it as their headquarters, Aurelie discovers she knows the German Major’s aide de camp, Maximilian Von Sternburg. She and the dashing young officer first met during Aurelie’s debutante days in Paris. Despite their conflicting loyalties, Aurelie and Max’s friendship soon deepens into love, but betrayal will shatter them both, driving Aurelie back to Paris and the Ritz— the home of her estranged American heiress mother, with unexpected consequences.

France, 1942. Raised by her indomitable, free-spirited American grandmother in the glamorous Hotel Ritz, Marguerite “Daisy” Villon remains in Paris with her daughter and husband, a Nazi collaborator, after France falls to Hitler. At first reluctant to put herself and her family at risk to assist her grandmother’s Resistance efforts, Daisy agrees to act as a courier for a skilled English forger known only as Legrand, who creates identity papers for Resistance members and Jewish refugees. But as Daisy is drawn ever deeper into Legrand’s underground network, committing increasingly audacious acts of resistance for the sake of the country—and the man—she holds dear, she uncovers a devastating secret…one that will force her to commit the ultimate betrayal, and to confront at last the shocking circumstances of her own family history..

France, 1964. For Barbara “Babs” Langford, her husband, Kit, was the love of her life. Yet their marriage was haunted by a mysterious woman known only as La Fleur. On Kit’s death, American lawyer Andrew “Drew” Bowdoin appears at her door. Hired to find a Resistance fighter turned traitor known as “La Fleur,” the investigation has led to Kit Langford. Curious to know more about the enigmatic La Fleur, Babs joins Drew in his search, a journey of discovery that that takes them to Paris and the Ritz—and to unexpected places of the heart. . .