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Skin Game by Cara McKenna

Skin GameSkin Game by Cara McKenna
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is really more of a 4.5 stars for me. Wonderfully original and a very absorbing read. Not a romance, more of a psychological drama with some sex involved. No HEA though there are a few happy for now moments.

A group of 12 wildly different strangers agree to participate in a week-long psychological study in the wilds of Alaska with a prize of $500,000 for the sole winner. Teams change randomly for each objective, some of the objectives are done as singles. Alliances are built and broken. Bodily fluids are exchanged for reasons having very little to do with romance or warm feelings.

I’ve always been fascinated by scenarios that involve people needing to figure out how to do something challenging with few resources and strangers involved. This explains my unhealthy love of apocalypse movies and some reality type shows.

This book fulfilled my needs nicely and kept me caught up and guessing right through the very end. While I prefer my books to have a well defined happily every after I was quite content with the happy for now that was offered. Skillfully written and another win for Cara McKenna.

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Category: 4 Stars, Auto Buy, I read too!, Scraps  Comments off

Heavy Issues by Elle Aycart

Heavy IssuesHeavy Issues by Elle Aycart

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’ve been anxiously awaiting this book since I finished More Than Meets the Ink, the Bowen brothers are hot, hot shit! Elle Aycart did NOT disappoint!

This book is, indeed, about heavy issues. I had no clue that title was a double entendre but boy, did I get blown out of the water. In a completely good way.

Christy is from LA and she’s run to Alden to recover from a very messy break up with the help of her best friend. While there she gets a part time job helping to organize the library which happens to be under construction at the time. This is how she meets Cole Bowen, who won’t give her the time of day and is wayyyyy to sexy for her.

Cole lives in Alden, running what seems to be a construction/demolition business. He won’t give Christy the time of day because she is his fantasy come true and he knows she just had a bad break up. Cole does NOT do complications or commitment. Good, hard, hot sex is what he’s after. And holy shit does he do it well. *fans self*

Christy and Cole go into their ‘relationship’ with their eyes wide open – at least regarding what they both think they want. Hot, hot, HOT sex ensues. Lots of hot sex. Alpha males are so yummy and Cole is Alpha with a capital A. Extreme control in the bedroom. Protective and possessive outside of it. Both of them see the relationship moving out of the let’s have sex and pretend to date thing and into actually enjoying each other’s company outside of the bedroom.

Knowing Cole doesn’t want a real relationship Christy cuts him off. Not from her bed but from the rest of her life. For the life of him Cole can’t figure out what’s up with that and why he is reacting the way he is.

It’s within the confines of their relationship that we see the heavy issues addressed. And Ms. Aycart does a masterful job. I cried for both of them and the very real, valid hurts they had received. I totally understood why each of them acted and reacted the way they did. The mirror scene after the big bitch butt-head was horrible to Christy was heart-wrenching. Cole coming to his senses and going after his woman was wonderfully done.

It was nice to get a peek at James and Tate, nice to see some of the supporting cast from More Than Meets the Ink making visits as well. This really was a great book. Very steamy, lots of sex, tons of relationships and a wonderful HEA!

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Category: 4 Stars, I read too!, Scraps  Comments off

Mac n’ Cheese days and other random thoughts

Lots of people complain about cool, rainy days.  Especially once we start to head toward the middle of May.  In my area it’s a good thing to have them because we got barely any snow this winter and I’m worried we’ll have problems come summer due to the lack of melt.  So I’ll take rainy days when they come our way.  Even without fear of drought I love a good rainy day, the kind of day where you curl up with a book (or e-reader) and a cup of tea.  The sort of day where you make cookies, casseroles or soups.  In honor of today’s rain and my second full day of not having a job I made mac n’ cheese.  11-year old cheddar from the Thousand Islands, some ‘green’ (or non aged) cheese which is like a mild cheddar with onion, mustard powder, garlic powder, salt, pepper, butter and yummy panko breadcrumbs.

It just came out of the oven and tastes wonderful.  God, I missed cooking.

Yesterday I read The Last Boyfriend (Inn BoonsBoro Trilogy #2) by Nora Roberts. I love me some La Nora.  Yeah, the stories are predictable and it’s the same basic plot over and over but I love relationship novels and she writes a hell of a relationship.  This was also a friends to lovers story which is wonderful to read as well.  So I’m looking forward to the next one which is out in November.  She cranks them out quickly but not quickly enough!!!!

What else?  The girl child has driven the car to school both days this week.  It still kind of freaks me out that she’s old enough to drive.  Her prom was last weekend and I nearly lost it during the grand march.  She looked so grown up and I can still remember when I took her home from the hospital.  I’ve got a picture of her in my head when she was about a year old.  She is in diapers and a t-shirt with my toothbrush – using it to brush her hair and looking at me with this sweet, innocent smile.  She still looks at me with that sweet, innocent smile but while wearing shorts and a sweatshirt and while asking to take the car to the mall!  Time flies.

Speaking of time flying – there are not too many mac n’ cheese days left before summer settles in so if you don’t mind…I’m going back to eating.

Category: 4 Stars, Cooking, I read too!, Scraps  Comments off


Life is, after all, about changes.  The last 5 or 6 months have mine have proven that to me.  My husband and I made a decision that I would leave a job I had been at for over three years, a company I had been with for almost 6 years and start a new career.  In January I started that new career and before the new and shiny wore off I knew it wasn’t the right move for me.  Not only was I not thrilled with the actual job responsibilities but I hated the hours.  In theory working 9:30 am to 6 pm sounded good.  In actuality?  Eh, not so much!  It’s amazing how much you can’t get done on that schedule.

See – the job I had for three years?  When I took it, and before the new and shiny wore of, I knew it wasn’t right for me.  And I stayed because that’s what you do.  Right?  Bad idea because it nearly killed me and I don’t mean that in a dramatic way.  It contributed to my physical and mental illness and the last half of last year was rough.  Really, really rough.  As a result I am sure of one thing without question.  I DO NOT want to ever be there again.  Once was more than enough.

My wonderful husband and I did some numbers and figured that I don’t need to work that job right now.  In fact I can head out and get something low stress and easy and we’ll be okay.  While scary I feel good about these changes.  That job wasn’t the right fit for me and I don’t want to wait three years to make a move I knew I should make sooner rather than later.

So today I am puttering about the house, I’ve got a ton of paperwork to go through and I’ve been putting that off for nearly 5 months.  I’m sure there is at least one important thing in there I should have taken care of…

Category: Scraps  One Comment

The Bro-Magnet by Lauren Baratz-Logsted

The Bro-Magnet by Lauren Baratz-Logsted

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Very clever book that had me laughing out loud from beginning to end. Written in the male 1st person POV The Bro-Magnet tells the story of 33-year old Johnny, a guy’s guy who has lousy luck with women.

There is a strong cast of supportive characters, all amazingly well developed for a story written in the 1st person. What I really liked is that every character is functional, there are no deep dark secrets, no baggage to deal with, and no deep mystery to solve. Straight up character driven The Bro-Magnet gives us a man trying desperately trying to impress a woman and a woman trying desperately trying to impress a man. It shows how far we will go when we are looking for love.

Not sure if there are going to be more books set in this particular world. While all the story lines were wrapped up I would actually like to read Sam’s story.

I’ll be looking for more from this author and I recommend this book for anyone who likes light hearted, sweet romances.

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Crash Into You (Loving On The Edge, #1) by Roni Loren

Crash Into You by Roni Loren

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Good read! Though there was a BDSM club involved and D/s scenes it kind of felt like BDSM lite to me. The characters were well developed, both main and secondary. Developed enough that I’ll happily purchase the 2nd book that deals with the hero’s best friend.

The mystery kind of got lost within the personal conflicts and issues of the main characters, there was a rather huge secret revealed near the end of the book that didn’t get the build up or page attention you would expect.

There was a m/f/m menage that, while not my favorite style, was very well done and hot. Overall the smex was quite hot and well written.

Being a character driven romance fan I do wish all of the focus had been on the relationship between Reid and Brynn because heaven knows they had enough baggage between the two of them to fill up several books! 🙂

Over all I liked the book and while not quite an auto buy author for me I’ll be making another purchase.

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Day 14- A picture of you and your family

Seriously, I’m totally running out of pictures of me and my family and friends.  LOL  This is from 2009 – almost all of my family on my mother’s side.  My husband and one of my children are missing but it’s pretty tough to get us all together at the same time.

The Geek Job by Eve Langlais

The Geek Job by Eve Langlais

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This was my first read by Eve Langlais and while I wasn’t blown away I’ll go back for more.

It was a slow starter – lots of telling and not a lot of showing – and I was pretty sure I wasn’t going to like Lexie all that much. As she shed the persona she needed to adopt in the beginning of the book I warmed up to her much more. I enjoyed Anthony when he was a beta but not so much as an alpha. Don’t get me wrong, I love my alpha heroes but I enjoy a well written beta. Anthony was that. The change to alpha was rough and abrupt though well written.

Towards the end of the book there were a few discoveries that opened up a world of ethical questions and possibilities for more books. Well done, that.

Overall I enjoyed this read and would recommend it to those who like erotic paranormal romance.

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Day 09- Something you’re proud of in the past few days

Okay – this may seem really lame to a lot of people (well, the 5 or so that read my blog) but I’m very proud of the fact that I finally, finally had the first part of my dental surgery done.

After getting a print out of my account I was surprised to find out that I have needed this oral surgery for 10 years.  10 years!  The first time I went to see the oral surgeon was 2002 and for one reason or another I kept putting it off.  And off.  And off.  Since I’m working on taking care of me now I decided to finally get it taken care of.  It’s been so long and things have not gotten better that we had to break my surgery up into two separate procedures.  The first was last Thursday and the next will be this Thursday.  Some time off for healing (and starting a new job! but more on that later) and I can get a bridge.

So, maybe it’s lame and for many people it may not be something to be remotely proud of but for me it was a big step.


Day 08- Short term goals for this month and why

This one is pretty darned easy actually.  LOL

My short term goal for this month is to post every day for this meme.  It’s been years since I’ve posted on my blog consistently and the only thing I’ve been able to count on is that I would NOT post!  Part of my recovery is writing more because writing makes me vulnerable.  Being vulnerable is a place I have had no desire to be for years and I miss the person I was when I was willing to share with friends and family.

30 days make a habit – at least that’s what I’ve heard – so I’m hoping these 30 days help me get back into the habit of expressing myself through the written word.