WELCOME to the Small Book Blog! I am a voracious reader. I love losing myself in books and cannot wait to read myself into my next adventure. It is because of this love for books that I created this blog. I want to share my passion of books with you! I hope you enjoy my recommendations and reviews. My goal is that they will lead you to a new book, series or author, that you can fall in love with and recommend to others as well.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Stephenie Meyer's Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined

It happened. I couldn’t stop myself from buying the anniversary edition of Twilight with the new gender switch/flipped version of Twilight called Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined. The thing that really wrapped around my brain and made me buy it was the opening where Stephenie Meyer tells us what percentage of the various changes, updates, corrections, gender roles, etc. that she did to this reimagined novel. I was intrigued to see how she would have made Twilight better, cleaner, richer… It wasn’t the gender switching of the characters.

I would recommend this book to twilight enthusiast... I would keep it in the back of my mind for newbies to twilight who I know have no interest in reading a series but want the feel for it. It's a single book which was nice. It was good to see the author polish things up although I didn't like her choice of characters names, that's just me though. It was a struggle getting into the book at first. You feel like, “Wait a minute, haven’t I read this?” But as you get used to the different/new characters, absorb the names and “who is who” you eventually (and it took me a lot of will power to stick with it) get sucked in to see how Meyer is going to wrap this up. You know deep down a girl vampire is VERY unlikely to get pregnant from a human boy. Anyways, my advice is to stick it out and read to the end. It’s interesting.

The author definitely wouldn't have received her acclaim, fame or huge bank account with just this novel. I highly doubt Fifty Shades of Grey would have been born of it either.

Great anniversary gift for twilight fans.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Patricia Briggs' Moon Called

This past fall I found myself visiting the Oregon coast. The thing I love about visiting the coastal towns is that there are always book stores. The city I was in had at least 5- I was in heaven. Patricia Briggs novel Moon Called is one of the treasures I found on my coastal adventure. I am very happy I bought this new to me author, especially since she has quite the backlist of books! Moon Called is the first book in the Mercy Thompson series. It was fantastic and I can’t wait to get more Patricia Briggs in my life!

Moon Called introduces us to a fantastic set of supernatural and human characters. They are strong, believable, engaging and enticing. I love the world Briggs has created- with the supernatural living with and among us; some openly and some covertly. Briggs does a great job telling us about the various species of supernatural- werewolves, vampires, fae, and walkers. She gives you enough tidbits to keep the reader comfortable, engaged in the story and hooking you into an overall plot you know the author has in mind, but leaves a bit of mystery there, especially with shifters like Mercy, for the reader to want to know more and keep reading the series.

That said, the novel’s synopsis is spot on. Mercy can’t help but get herself into trouble and spooky situations every chance that she either gets or when she thinks it’s her duty to help out.  
                                “Mercedes "Mercy" Thompson is a talented Volkswagen mechanic living in the Tri-       Cities area of Washington. She also happens to be a walker, a magical being with the power to             shift into a coyote at will. Mercy's next-door neighbor is a werewolf. Her former boss is a gremlin. And she's fixing a bus for a vampire. This is the world of Mercy Thompson, one that      looks a lot like ours but is populated by those things that go bump in the night. And Mercy's       connection to those things is about to get her into some serious hot water...

The romance is a slow simmer in this novel. The love triangle that’s not quite a love triangle yet was intoxicating in Moon Called between Mercy, Adam and Samuel. Briggs sets her characters up individually and then starts the slow entanglement that leaves the reader panting to know what will happen!!! Give me book 2 in this series already! (Good thing I am “late” finding this author and she has quite a few books in this series published already!) I also really appreciated that the author took the time to flesh out and introduce us to the more minor and support players in Mercy’s world. They helped create the mood, dynamics, and mysterious scraps of information needed for a series like this.

I would absolutely recommend this author and this series to my dear readers. It has action, adventure, sexual tension, kick ass characters, violence and mystery.  

Friday, October 23, 2015

Go To Author: Christina Lauren!

Everyone has go to authors- those authors that you impatiently wait to hear when a new book will be released then promptly add it to your wish list so you can remember when you need to dash to the bookstore on release day... You may or may not read reviews because you love the author’s voice and they could never possibly disappoint you or let you down... that’s what I think of when I say “go to author.”

I wanted to share an author who has quickly climbed onto my “go to author” shelf: Christina Lauren. I love their books (I say “their” because it’s actually a coauthor duo of Christina Hobbs and Lauren Billings)! Each story the author creates makes the reader want to dive into the couples love story and adventures the friends are experiencing. As you read, the characters further pull you under and you can't put the book down until the end to see how everything will be wrapped up! The novels are witty, sassy, and full of sex- and not your typical vanilla sex scenes. The characters are full of heart and love to give and share.

Christina Lauren has at least two different series (I devoured the series: Beautiful Bastard & Wild Seasons). What I love about them is that while each book is focused on the two main characters relationship, the other characters you have met, or are soon to meet more in depth, are in and out of all the novels. It’s fun to watch the characters change, grow, and interact book to book weaving throughout each other's stories as they do in their book lives.

Anyone else have this dynamic duo on their “go to author” shelf? Please share, I’d love to hear what others think. Here is a link to Christina Lauren's goodreads profile: Christina Lauren on goodreads

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Pucked by Helena Hunting

I was talking to a friend about how I just finished reading a really good book but that it wasn't very sexy. She exclaimed, "That is a crime! Read Pucked! It will more than make up for lack of sex." Boy howdy was she correct. Pucked was excellent! I imagine the author had an amazing time creating the story, the characters, the scenes and crazy situations. (For the actual synopsis of the novel visit Pucked on Goodreads.)

I will put a clause in here for people whose sensibilities would be rubbed the wrong way by dirty or crass language. If you are one of those people don’t even read the rest of my book promotion. I would use movies as an example- you can crass it up and cuss till you are blue in the face but most of the time, it doesn't make the story any better or characters more appreciated. A line here and there may last the ages (think “Yippy Ka Yay MotherF@cker!”). The author of Pucked toed the line of language but even the characters don’t take themselves seriously so it works. It’s the exception to the rule.

The author of Pucked is able to create a book that is a romance at its core. Sure it is colored with a foul mouthed leading lady, strong caring men, and overall is excellent girl porn, but the formula for romance that we all love to read is there and you can sink into it… and other things, *ahem*. There are scenes in the book that had me laughing at the absurdity of them or laughing because I can't imagine how the author came up with it but I was so thankful she didn't take the scenes out- how many authors would do the cape scene for one!? That’s right; you have to read the book to find out what the Super MC cape is but oh is it worth it.

So, for your next date night in with yourself and a good book, read Pucked and have fun. Everyone deserves an erotic little treat here and there.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Kristan Higgins' If She Only Knew

I just finished reading Kristan Higgins new novel If She OnlyKnew. This book is lovely. It’s heart felt and open. It doesn't make the reader feel bad if they would have chosen, or think they would choose, a different path than the characters regarding how to have love and keep love in their lives. The novel delves into the lives of two sisters at a cross roads in their separate lives. Jenny, already choosing her path and building a new life after her husband abruptly divorces her (and soon after marries a new woman and has a baby with her even though he always told Jenny he had no interest in being a father). While Jenny deals with the fall out and rebuilding of her life and self, she moves to a little city outside New York to be closer to her sister and delightful triplet nieces. Jenny’s sister Rachel thinks she is exactly where she always wanted to be and life cannot get any better. Of course this is when God throws a curve ball to test Rachel. Both Jenny and Rachel, in their own way, takes what life deals them and try to find their place in the new circumstances they find themselves in. The novel is just realistic enough it tugs at your insides and emotions but fictional enough for the reader to escape- why else do we read?

Kristan Higgins has created wonderful characters and has a talent with words which put you smack dab into the world she has created for the short period of time we get to spend there. You want to be friends with them, hug them, slug them, try out a delectable piano lesson and contemplate babysitting the chaotic triplets. Higgins does a great job about creating characters that are stronger than they think they are and are, after some pushing and shoving, daring to find what path in life that will make them happy, healthy and safe. The stumbles along the way are what make life so rich and unique. As I always remind myself- Visualize your best case scenario, your worst case scenario and then strive to create a way to achieve that goal.

While I am not in the same positions as the readers- I loved the eternal and optimistic message because it can be transferred to so many subjects within relationships we have with loved ones on a daily basis. "There are only perfect, glowing moments, like this one, and then there are the everyday moments that weave them together into a shimmering path that can always be seen, even in the dark."

Thursday, August 27, 2015

We're celebrating summer today through Monday the 31st with some cool Scottish love. Award-winning The Legend of Lady MacLaoch is FREE on Amazon Kindle! Be sure to share the love and tell your friends!

Escape to the Highlands and find yourself in love with a modern day fairy tale, click here to go to Amazon.

A legendary love, an unforgiving curse, and the discovery of a lifetime . . .

Centuries ago a vengeful curse buried itself deep into the history of the MacLaoch clan and become a legendary tale told by all those not cursed by its words.

In present-day Scotland, the laird and chief of the MacLaoch clan is an ex-Royal Air Force fighter pilot who has been past the gates of hell and returned a changed man. Rowan MacLaoch does battle with wartime memories and a family curse that threaten to consume him—unaware that his life and that of the history of the clan will be changed forever by the arrival of an American woman.

Cole Baker, a feisty recent graduate of a master’s program, stumbles upon the ancient curse while researching her bloodlines. Moved by the history of the MacLaoch clan and the mystery of its chief, she digs into the legend that had been anything but quiet for centuries.

On their quest for answers, Cole and Rowan travel to places they have never before been and become witnesses to things they have never before fathomed. The legend—one started with blood—will end with more shed as its creator finally exacts her justice.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Me Before You by JoJo Moyes

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes: I loved it. I couldn’t put it down. I will admit one thing and it’s a big thing for others out there who also have heard the rave reviews about this book so, like me, they go out and purchase the book and jump into the story. It is not a traditional love story and it covers deep subject matter. This is your warning. I forgot to warn a friend who I lent my copy to and I heard all about it. LOL! I, myself, was totally surprised when I realized the direction the novel was going but it was also very eye opening and a soft look into the world of quadriplegics. I appreciated the chance to imagine the world they are “trapped in” and the various obstacles they and their loved ones deal with on a daily basis.

Me Before You is about Lou, a girl who is lost in the world and trying to figure out her place in it. She has a vibrant personality and positive attitude about just about anything and everything. She is witty, funny and feels like a real person. She stumbles into a job (and whole new world) working as a type of caregiver for Will, to help heal his broken soul as he deals with his now broken body. Since his accident, Will has become a poor reflection of the daring, adventurous, handsome, successful man he was. His world has dramatically shrunk to his house and how his body is responding/behaving that day.

The author has an amazing voice as she introduces us to the characters, and to the relationship Will and Lou forge. I felt myself wanting to help and encourage them to grow individually and to grow together. The author has a knack for writing characters that feel like real people out there in the world. She entrenches you in their world- the feelings, smells, touch, sound, taste, joys and fears. Will and Lou weave an amazing six month journey of something that is just good.

I would also like to add that I truly appreciated the title of the novel once I finished the reading journey. It’s very reflective of the story and characters. “While every human being has a capacity for love, its realization is one of the most difficult achievements.” –Erich Fromm

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Poldark Series by Winston Graham

Do you ever watch a show, realize it’s a book, and get that panicked feeling of “Oh no! Should I read it first or watch it first?” I recently stumbled across Masterpiece’s new series Poldark. I fell in love with the story, the characters, and the landscape. I enjoyed the series so much I could not temper my patience waiting for Sunday to arrive and a new episode to play. I went online and ordered the DVD (sometimes it’s awesome when the shows air in Britain first). Of course, like all good series, season one ended with cliffhangers and our beloved characters are in all kinds of messes. With sadness in my heart and no idea of when season two would be available, I sadly turned off the tv and went to read my latest book before bed. Suddenly the thought hits me, “DUH!! Poldark was based on a book.” I raced to Goodreads online to investigate this happy thought and all while singing to myself, “It’s a book! Just go read it!”

So begins my adventures in finding book one of Winston Grahams’ Poldark sagas (12 books in all!). The series looks like it was first published from 1945 forward. However, upon searching Amazon, Barnes and Noble and a local bookstore, I am not finding this book as available! It’s old! Where can it be? Apparently they have recently reprinted the first 2 books in the series, in June, and it’s already sold out! This is no surprise to me as the actor who portrayed Ross Poldark is on the cover of the reprinted editions. *quick pause to appreciate Adrian Turner…* Now I wait for the books to be available again at the end of this month. I just hope the books meet or exceed my expectations. When I looked on Goodreads it mentioned the series is more of a saga like Gone with the Wind and a “trashy” historical romance like Jane Eyre was considered. I’m very pleased with those as recommendations and comparisons!

I’ll let you know how the book/s turns out when I get my greedy hands on them and am able to relish in their world again. I can’t wait to see how close the television series is to the books, if the characters will be as endearing or irritating, if I fly through the chapters to find out what will happen next, if I forget to breathe while reading parts… 

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Sharing Your Library With Friends

I thought of you today, my poor seemingly abandoned book blog. Since becoming a mother I have felt as though our Little Dragon entered the world and words and how to construct them swiftly vacated the premise of my mind. Slowly I am finding time and inspiration to create again, to read, to invent and design, to fall in love with old and new characters in books and on screen, and my favorite: to share favored authors and gossip over the books friends finish.

I have a friend who reads one to three books throughout a normal week. We have started sharing books with each other (love the USPS book rate!). The other day she lets me know she is ready for her next installment of books. I’m giddy just thinking about sharing more novels with someone I know will love or hate them, so I go hunting through my libraries of books throughout my  house, looking for romantic suspense genre authors with a back-list of books or series. Then, as I’m working my way through the stacks, I decided I would surprise my friend and introduce her to the world of the paranormal. Most of them are romantic suspense tales, just that the characters are Other Worldly. I finally take a break and look down at the books I have pulled… I’m at 32 books. YIKES! Frantically I text my friend to ask if she had a book limit. I have met it. I made a few notes of other books for the next time we rotate books and get this stack ready to travel.

All this said, I wanted to share the different authors with you, my dear readers!

For romantic suspense I shared: Lisa Unger, Laura Griffin, Brenda Novak, Lora Leigh, Karen Rose, P.D. Martin and Allison Brennan. 

As an introduction to the paranormal books I went with: Andrea Cremer (absolutely love her werewolf YA series!), Coreene Callahon, Kresley Cole, Thea Harrison, and Kelley Armstrong.