Tuesday, March 5, 2013

The Month That Was February 2013

Lemon Drop:  Let's see what Auntie Wendy is up to....


Lemon Drop ::scrolling::  Geez, what's with the lack of posts Auntie Wendy?  This place is like The Dead Zone.

Wendy: Which would be why you are here cupcake!  To save my bacon!  To give me blog filler content!  Let's take a look at what I managed to get read last month.

Title links will take you to full reviews

Undone By The Duke by Michelle Willingham - Historical Regency romance, Amazon Montlake, 2013, Grade = C+
  • The start of a new series featuring four sisters.  A mixed bag read for me.  I liked the heroine, I liked the way the author handled some of the historical aspects, and I liked that the author gave us points of view from many of the secondary players.  Was less enthralled with the hero and some of the pacing.
A Dangerous Liaison With Detective Lewis by Jillian Stone - Historical Victorian romance, Pocket, 2012, Grade = D+
  • Liked the plot (especially the Industrial Revolution-driven suspense thread), didn't like either of the main characters.  A problem since, you know, this is a romance novel.
Little Cowgirl On His Doorstep by Donna Alward - Contemporary romance, Harlequin Romance, 2013, Grade = D+
  • This breaks my heart because it's the first Alward I've read that I didn't like.  Resented the way the Dead Sister was portrayed in this book.  Glamorous, Sexy, Well-Put-Together = One Night Stand Material.  Girl-Next-Door, Homey, Bakes Cupcakes For A Living (Seriously!) = Perfect Mate For The Hero.  I spent the whole novel feeling sorry for the Dead Sister and came to resent the fact that she was dead and therefore was never going to get her own happy ending. 
One Less Lonely Cowboy by Kathleen Eagle - Contemporary romance, Harlequin Special Edition, 2013, Grade = B-
  • The romance didn't light my world on fire, but Eagle writes such nice, interesting characters that it's hard to quibble.  Loved the depiction of the hero's occupation, and loved the family dynamic between the aging father in poor health and the heroine, a woman who made some bad choices when she was a teenager.
Sold To The Enemy by Sarah Morgan - Contemporary romance, Harlequin Presents, 2013, Grade = B-
  • I like the way Morgan plays around in the Category Romance Trope Sandbox, but I did have quibbles with this one.  A strong first half that sort of faded down the stretch.  Also, I found the heroine's relentless optimism a little hard to swallow considering she'd spent her entire life under the thumb of a domineering father.
Promoted: To Wife And Mother by Jessica Hart - Contemporary romance, Harlequin Romance, 2008, Grade = A
  • My TBR Challenge read for February - the book that saved my dismal reading month.  Great Alpha heroine (who is 40!) paired up with a widower hero with three teenage kids.  A wonderful story about grown-ups with grown-up problems.
A Real Cowboy by Sarah M. Anderson - Contemporary romance, Harlequin Desire, 2013, Grade = C+
  • Nice characters, nice setting - I just thought the Hollywood back-story could have used some more work.  Also, I expect a woman with the heroine's background to have a bit more gumption.  OK, any gumption would have been nice.  An OK read, but this author has written better.
Did Not Finish (DNFs) this month were:

Lawless by Patricia Potter - Historical western romance, Bantam, 1991
  • Only read about 50 pages before realizing I didn't care and wasn't interested.  A heroine who rescues every damn stray that falls her way, a wounded hero who sticks around even though he should tell the villain to shove it, and a horde of plot moppet kidlets.  I didn't read anything outright offensive or "bad" - it just wasn't my thing and I moved on to something else.
A Private Duel With Agent Gunn by Jillian Stone - Historical Victorian romance, Pocket, 2012
  • Read about a third of the book and realized that I was having the exact same issues with this story as I did with the other Stone novel I tried this month.  An interesting plot saddled with characters who behaved in a manner I found unbelievable.  The heroine thinks the hero is responsible for her brother's death and she's bantering with him?!  The hero supposedly suffers from PTSD, used to have a problem with opium, and yet he flirts, banters and doesn't brood?!  I mean, at all?!?!?!  Yeah, moving on.  I suspect this is a series that just isn't going to be for me.
Lemon Drop: Someone pass the Baby Xanax!  What a.....well, this wasn't a very good month Auntie Wendy.  No wonder your blogging has slacked off.  You need help!

Me: Yes.  Yes, I do.  What do you propose?

Lemon Drop: Duh.  More pictures of me!  Oh, like this one for instance.....

Me: Really?  Your solution to me breaking out of my reading slump is to post more pictures of you?

Lemon Drop: The cuteness, it will distract people.

Me: Or, you know, I could force myself to sit down and actually get some reading done.  I'm bound to find a good book eventually.

Lemon Drop:  Pffft, like that will work!

Me: Crazier things have been known to happen.


Phyllis said...

Aww cuuuuuute!


I've been in a slump, too. Today I got a couple of books that I've been waiting for from the library (waiting for AGES) and hope to break out of the medium and into the awesome.

*Goddess* said...

Distracted me:) but then again, it doesn't take much with me.

I love that kitty hat!

A Library Girl said...

O_O I need to get a kitty hat like that for my niece.

willaful said...

I started Lawless and it seemed to have everything I hate in a historical romance in it, so I didn't get much past the first chapter.

azteclady said...

I believe I've read and actually enjoyed Lawless--will have to look in the piles and piles and piles, see if it stands a re-read for me.

At times like this I'm glad I do not keep track of my reading--the reading slump from hell is bad enough without seeing the dismal statistics in black and white! :-p

(Hoping March brings better luck and more enjoyable reads to you)

Wendy said...

Phyllis: Inevitably what happens when I hit a batch of books I didn't enjoy is that I just....stop reading altogether. I allow myself to get distracted by other things - like TV, the Internet. I just need to get back up on the horse.

Goddess & Library Girl: Let's see if my sister pops in to confirm - but I think that kitty hat was a Christmas gift. Not sure from whom (my parents?) or where they bought it.

Willaful & AL: I suspect Lawless is one of those books that I would have enjoyed had I read it back when I first discovered the genre. But now I'm an old fuddy-duddy curmudgeon, and I wasn't into it. There was nothing about the heroine I found interesting (Oh yeah - another do-goody who rescues strays!) and the fact that the hero rescues the same plot moppet TWICE within the first 40 pages sort of sealed it's fate for me. Again, nothing "wrong" with what I read - just totally not my cup of tea, at least these days.

Sheri said...

Well, Santa gave Lemon Drop the hat but I happen to know that Santa loves himself some Target. :) It came with gloves too! Santa said there were other animals but Ceci loves kitties so she got a kitty set. Maybe try online since stores have their swimsuits out now...silly stores. :)

Ruth (CO) said...

I just bought the Jillian Hart. I hope I love it as much as you do.

Lemond Drop is so adorable.

Regards, Ruth (CO)

Leslie said...

So odd to see Lemon Drop at the laptop when it seems like she was just learning to crawl! Still so adorable. :)

I'm picking up the Hart - love that the heroine is 40.

Nicole said...

Aw, too bad about the bad month.

My daughter has that same hat! Even was wearing it today. We love us some Target in this house.

nath said...

Ouch, Wendy ^_^; Really tough month you had there! Hopefully, March will be better! And at least, you did have a ray of sunshine in there LOL.

Wow, kids nowadays are so techno-savvy!

Wendy said...

Lil' Sis & Nicole: Is it time for a Target intervention? LOL

Ruth & Leslie: Hope you guys enjoy the Hart as much as I did!

Nath: Lemon Drop's Daddy is a computer brainiac. Poor kid didn't stand a chance. My sister tries to counteract this by taking her to the park a lot to run around :)