All The Plum-y Goodness

Hello again everyone!  I’ve been wanting to read each book in this series as well!  It’s the Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich!  The first was made into a movie, but the book was SOOO much better.  I cannot wait to get started on the remainder of the books as well.  I’m going to be reviewing the ones that came between the numbers as well, mostly because they ALSO include the character of Stephanie Plum.  Here they all are!

  1. One For The Money
  2. Two For The Dough
  3. Three To Get Deadly
  4. Four To Score
  5. High Five
  6. Hot Six
  7. Seven Up
  8. Hard Eight
  9. Visions of Sugar Plums (8.5)
  10. To The Nines
  11. Ten Big Ones
  12. Eleven On Top
  13. Twelve Sharp
  14. Plum Lovin (12.5)
  15. Lean Mean Thirteen
  16. Plum Lucky (13.5)
  17. Fearless Fourteen
  18. Plum Spooky (14.5)
  19. Finger Lickin’ Fifteen
  20. Sizzling Sixteen
  21. Smoking Seventeen
  22. Explosive Eighteen
  23. Notorious Nineteen
  24. Takedown Twenty
  25. Top Secret Twenty-One
  26. Tricky Twenty-Two
  27. Turbo Twenty-Three (November 2016)

 


Book 1: One For The Money

1

Photo courtesy of: http://www.evanovich.com/

Started this one again on 9/1.  I LOVE this story so far! 🙂

 


Book 2: Two For The Dough


Book 3: Three To Get Deadly


Book 4: Four To Score


Book 5: High Five


Book 6: Hot Six


Book 7: Seven Up


Book 8: Hard Eight


Book 9: Visions of Sugar Plums (8.5)


Book 10: To The Nines


Book 11: Ten Big Ones


Book 12: Eleven On Top


Book 13: Twelve Sharp


Book 14: Plum Lovin (12.5)


Book 15: Lean Mean Thirteen


Book 16: Plum Lucky (13.5)


Book 17: Fearless Fourteen


Book 18: Plum Spooky (14.5)


Book 19: Finger Lickin’ Fifteen


Book 20: Sizzling Sixteen


Book 21: Smoking Seventeen


Book 22: Explosive Eighteen


Book 23: Notorious Nineteen


Book 24: Takedown Twenty


Book 25: Top Secret Twenty-One


Book 26: Tricky Twenty-Two


Book 27: Turbo Twenty-Three

 

***

Wow!  That’s a lot of books.  Something tells me that Ms. Evanovich isn’t quite done with Stephanie yet.  Even with the one not being released until November, I predict she has a few more planned.  We’ll see.  In the meantime, I’m out!  Cheers!  -Silver-

Sparking The Love of A Vampire

Here I have another Series to review.  This time, I will be reviewing the “Love At Stake” series by Kerrilyn Sparks.  I’ve read a few of these books already, and I’ve always meant to read them all.  Since I’ve been bit by the reviewing bug, I’ve decided to do this series as well.  I hope you like these books as much as I do!  So, sit back and craft while I type!  Thank you again for joining me!

I’ll be linking (as usual) to each book as I read through them.  Here they all are:

  1. How to Marry A Millionaire Vampire
  2. Vamps and the City
  3. A Very Vampy Christmas
  4. Be Still My Vampire Heart
  5. The Undead Next Door
  6. All I Want for Christmas is a Vampire
  7. Secret Life of a Vampire
  8. Forbidden Nights With A Vampire
  9. The Vampire and The Virgin
  10. Eat Prey Love
  11. Vampire Mine
  12. Sexiest Vampire Alive
  13. Wanted: Undead or Alive
  14. Wild About You
  15. Vampires Gone Wild
  16. The Vampire With The Dragon Tatoo
  17. How to Seduce A Vampire (Without Really Trying)
  18. Crouching Tiger, Forbidden Vampire

 

 


Book 1: How to Marry A Millionaire Vampire

July 18th->19th: I still can’t believe I finished this book within the course of 14 hours.  But I got sucked in to the romance of Roman and Shanna. Basically, he looses a fang and goes to Shanna, who happens to be a Dentist who happens to be afraid of blood and is in trouble with the Russian Mofia (because her dad pissed them off). When Roman realizes this, he strives to protect her from the Mofia, as well as a Russian Vampire, who happens to be Roman’s Mortal Enemy (or Immortal Enemy, if you will).

I’ve actually read a few books later on, and always wondered about these two characters and how they met.  They are mentioned quite a few times in the next stories in this series and their current dramas, but not how they first got together!  I loved how Ms. Sparks dealt with their individual issues, and how she got them to work better together than apart.  Well Done!  Couldn’t wait to get to the rest of the series!

 


Book 2: Vamps and the City

July 19th->21st: This is the story of Mortal Austin and Vampiress Darcy. Essentially, she is a vampire who hates that Connor made her a vampire as she lay dying. He is a CIA agent in league with Shanna’s Dad Sean at the start.  A member of the Stake-Out team, and with a high level of metaphysical power to control objects and read minds. Sean sends Austin and another Stake-Out Agent undercover as contestants on a show that turns out to be the Vampire version of the Bachelor. Darcy is the one who comes up with the idea for and directs the newly coined “Sexiest Man on Earth” for the only all-owned Vampire TV station (DVN: Digital Vampire Network).  There’s a lot of comedy and romance that ensues. He starts to realize that his boss is a butthead, and ends up joining forces with Roman and the other bottle-fed Vampires hunting the Malcontent Vampires (those that still hunt and kill mortals to drink their blood).  As for Darcy, she gets another chance at a mortal life.  How, do you ask?  You’ll have to read the book to find out!

I bought this book on the newsstand when it first came out in 2006.  My copy is very well-loved, some pages are dog-eared (you know, folded over…I’ve stopped doing this since I bought this book, but the signs are there that I’ve been reading it awhile), and the pages  are actually turning yellow, but it still doesn’t keep me coming back to this lovely story. The true test of a good book, is if it has staying power.  This one REALLY does for me.  It’s survived two moves and several book purging sessions to our local library, if that’s any tell.  Well Done Ms. Sparks!

 


Book 2.5: A Very Vampy Christmas

July 21st->22nd: This was another quick read for me.  It’s the first read-through, and I can’t believe it took me this long to finally read it.  It’s meant to be a short story between the “main” books in the series. However, I believe Ms. Sparks would never truly think of it that way.  She took the story of Maggie & Don Orlando to a whole other level.  We learn that Don Orlando (the cheesy, piggish Vampire who is the star of DVN’s most popular soap opera) may not be Don Orlando.  Maggie suspects this from the first time she saw him on TV, but finally gets a chance to help him figure out who he really is while they work side-by-side on the soap opera. He finds his family is not what they seem like on the outside, and she finds a new step-daughter and a family with a wonderfully interesting secret.  You’ll have to read the book to find out what, though.  You’ll love the twist! I promise!

 


Book 3: Be Still My Vampire Heart

July 22nd->26th: This is another in the series that I picked up at the newsstand as soon it came out in 2007. However, I haven’t read it through as much as I would have liked, but it has survived at least one move! :)  I’m still in love with the storyline! 🙂

This is the story of Vampire Angus & Stake-Out team member Emma. I’m only 100 pages in so far, but there’s been a full moon, banter, and plenty of tongue-in-cheek humor I’ve come to love from the author!  Can’t wait to dive back into it! 🙂

26th 2PM: In fact, I started reading and managed to finish just after noon today!  I’m in LOVE with the story! 🙂

 


Book 4: The Undead Next Door

Started this one just before 12:00PM today!  Might read more later, and I can’t wait! 🙂

Update 8/17: I read this one between July 26th and 27th. It is the story of Jean-Luc and Heather.  I had heard about their possible relationship when I had picked up a later novel up  from the newsstand a few years ago, and had always meant to go back and read about them.  I can say I have now! Sometimes I found myself cringing about how long it took Heather to figure out who Jean Luc was, but that’s okay. Sometimes a little innocence can make the love story that much sweeter! I love how he gets to adopt her daughter and these two appear later in the series.  But,  you didn’t hear that from me…

 


Book 5: All I Want for Christmas is a Vampire

July 27th->July 29th: This is another book that I picked up at the newsstand when it first came out.  At first, I didn’t realize that it was part of a series, and I’ve been meaning to read the previous books, so here I am!  My paperback copy of this book isn’t as well-loved as the others, but I’ve ALWAYS enjoyed this story, and my want to read the series in the correct order now is just the perfect excuse to return to it! This book centers around the love story of Ian

 


Book 6: Secret Life of a Vampire

July 29th->Aug 1. It’s funny to me that Jack and Lara (an cop, now retired) meet as she’s busting up Ian’s Bachelor Party, which he is in charge of as the Best Man!  From there, it’s just pretty awesome! I don’t want to give up too much more of the story, but it’s a great story! 🙂

 


Book 7: Forbidden Nights With A Vampire

Aug 2nd->3rd: This is the story of Vanda and Phil. Vampire and werewolf, respectably. It starts with her being sentenced to Anger Management, Phil being her sponsor, and many other awesome storyline pieces.  You’ll just have to read this one for yourself.  It was a quick, but enjoyable read! 🙂

 


Book 8: The Vampire and The Virgin

Aug 3rd->4th: This time, it’s Olivia and Robby’s story. Carlos makes an appearance, but just as a matchmaker. Olivia can read emotions, and Robby is on a forced vacation after he was captured.  You know, they heal each other and fall in love. This is a great story, and I couldn’t put it down!🙂

 


Book 9: Eat Prey Love

Aug 4th->5th: This is Carlos and Caitlyn’s story. Caitlyn learns about who her father really is, who her brother-in-law is, and who Shanna has chosen for a family. Carlos finally gets his mate, and dies a few times.  But, Cats have 9 lives, so… In Were-Cat’s cases, that means they get more power each time they die… It’s an interesting thought…

A Spoiler Alert was marked on my Goodreads page for this one…  Apparently I fat-fingered the “:)” as I was entering my review on my Kindle. LOL…

 


Book 10: Vampire Mine

Aug 5th->8th: Finally!  The Cranky Vampire of the clan gets his chance at love! That’s all I’m going to say… (the rest has a bit of spoilers, so don’t read it, if you haven’t read the book yet…)

Or, that’s what I thought originally.  We learn that Connor has the whole host of heaven playing matchmaker for Connor.  Marielle is an angel of death, who is just like him. A born leader, who tends not to react well to others’ orders… They end up healing each other, and the reader is left celebrating when an important battle happens! I would tell you what each got from such a healing, but then I would REALLY be giving away something pretty awesome.  You’ll have to read the book to know why I have a smile on my face as I write this.  Heck, I feel like the cat that ate the Canary…

This was such a good book, I was sad that I had gobbled it up as fast as I did.

 


Book 11: Sexiest Vampire Alive

Aug 8th->10th: Welp. Gregory can blame Connor for the mess he finds himself having to deal with.  The Vampire secret is out! Good news, though? He gets to meet Abby (the President’s VERY smart daughter) while trying to smooth over the video damage that has been done in the previous book. But, I don’t think Gregory is TOO mad at Connor after meeting his mate.  So, it’s all good.  Right? …LOL

 


Book 12: Wanted: Undead or Alive

 

Aug 10->11th: Phineas (Vamp) and Bryn (A Wolf Princess) get thrown together enough that their attraction sticks!  Howard comes to help Phineas and Phil (Bryn’s Brother) get Bryn back after she is kidnapped by her father and an evil Werewolf. Here, Howard learns that the bad werewolf apparently has multiple lives as well. But you’ll have to read this book and the next to learn all of the drama behind why this little tidbit is important!  I couldn’t put this book down, and that little bit of foreshadowing helped lure me right into the beginning of the next book!🙂

Oh, city boy Phineas being afraid of horses.  That is all…

 


Book 13: Wild About You

Aug. 11th-16th: This is the story of Elsa and Howard. Together they learn more about their heritages. Elsa learns she’s a Guardian of the Forrest, and Howard learns more about the history of his people.  He learns more about how inter-connected the evil werewolf has been in both their pasts and in their current.  But He’s a Pooh Bear with an affinity for eating Bear Claw donuts…  Well, now we know more about him, and I kinda liked learning more about who he is, at the same time Elsa learns to trust her instincts.  Yay for that! I love that she has no idea who she really was until she met Howard. And that Tino ratted Howard out about a secret stash of “adult videos” that turn out to be tapes of the show that Elsa’s on.  Oh man!  I love that little tyke!

On to the next! 🙂

 


Book 13.5: Vampires Gone Wild

8/16->Current: I started this one right before 11PM last night. Read like one page before I realized HOW far behind my reviews were here versus how fast I had been reading them, and here I am…

Update 9/2: Finished this one 8/18.  I think my review on Goodreads sums up my feelings about this one PERFECTLY!!!  “:) Love at Stake was a cute little novella… Not sure about the rest…”

 


Book 14: The Vampire With The Dragon Tattoo

Dragon Tatoo

8/18->8/23: This book went pretty fast, considering I read this over the course of an entire work weekend.  I loved the tale of Dougal (who happens to be a vampire with a metal arm who used to play the bagpipes at gatherings, no longer can, and bitches about it more than he should at the very beginning of this story) and Leah (the new scientist hired to help the Vamps change the Supersoldiers back to normal). The VANNA dolls make another appearance, to the detriment of their first meeting… But it’s still hilarious, because metal arm meets plastic blow up doll… I’m sure you can imagine what happens, but you’ll have to read the story for yourself to see how they go from that to true love!  Trust me, you’ll be glad you did! 🙂

 


Book 15: How to Seduce A Vampire (Without Really Trying)

Seduce

8/23->8/27: This is the story of Zoltan (a vampire who has always been on the hunt for his father’s murderers and his mother’s people) and Neona (an immortal healer who just happens to live in the Valley Zoltan’s mother comes from). Suffice to say, we meet some wonderful Were-Dragons and their keepers, and the “fountain of eternal youth” along the way.  I couldn’t put this one down, even though I was trying to make the series last…

 


Book 16: Crouching Tiger, Forbidden Vampire

Tiger

8/27->8/31: This is the story of Russell (the Vamps found him in a Vampire Coma a few years ago, and hates Master Han) & Jia (a tiger princess who is being forced into an arranged marriage), who are after the same evil Vampire. They resist each other until she comes into her second life. There was quite to learn about after that. But, I don’t want to give away the storyline.  Ms. Sparks does a good job of wrapping up all that has happened in the series as Roman is addressing the Vamps at Russell & Jia’s wedding… Rajiv finds his beau too, just so you know..

I couldn’t put this one down, even though I was trying to make the series last…

***

I hope you enjoyed my analysis of this series as much as I did writing and reading them.  Until later!  -Silver-

Stash Dash 2.0

Start Date: 5/27 (Really, just after 1AM Eastern)

End Date: 8/21 (Really, almost 1AM Eastern the 22nd)

Here is a video TheKnitGirllls put together with this year’s rules, if you would like to view it! 🙂

 

For Your Ease Getting Around the Large NUMBER of projects I’m planning to do, I will include shortcuts to the different categories of items I will be doing:

  1. Shawls
  2. Socks
  3. Blankets
  4. Scarves
  5. Other  

FINAL Update 8/22:  It’s been a whirlwind Summer with all the projects I’ve been able to finish.  I haven’t made my 15K goal, but there’s always next year, right???  I have a total of 11, 858 Yards that I’ve completed this year, which is more than I did last year, so I can pretty much call this IMPROVED!🙂

There was a bit of surprise Cast-On-Itus this summer, and a lack of finishing to blame for this failure, but I’m already looking forward to next year… As usual, you can click the links above to jump to each section! Hope you enjoy the pictures of each, as much as I enjoyed knitting on each item!

It’s been Real!  PEACE! -Silver-


 

Shawls: (a Total of 6,360 yards Predicted before the beginning of S.D.)  – Finished 13 Total.

My “Rainbow” Hitchhiker: Pattern is “Hitchhiker” by Martina Behm.  I  mean to do a ‘proper’ Hitchhiker with 42 points.  42 is the answer to all, according to the denizens of “Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy.”  ;)  I’m using the “Dear Diary” Color on Chroma from KnitPicks.

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Predicting 572 yards.

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Pre-StashDash marker: 41 points.

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Done. Total: 495 yards / 452.60 Meters

 

 

 

Started: 2/17

Stopping Point B4 S.D. = 41 Points: 4/10

Completed: 5/27 @ 1:40.  The time matters, as it was the start of S.D. only 39 minutes before…  lol…  Don’t want to be accused of cheating…

 

The Doctor Is In! 🙂 : Pattern is “Yowza Weigh It Shawl 2” by Susan B. Anderson in MissBabs – YozaWhattaSkein!  It’s going to be huge!  I don’t think I’ve even done 1/4 of the skein of yarn yet.  It’s all scrunched up on the needles.  Sorry, but it does look better in person!🙂

Colorway: Tardish

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Predicting 560 Yards.

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End before S.D. 2.10 OZ left.

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Done. Total: 560 Yards / 512.06 Meters

Started: 3/14

Stopping Point B4 S.D. = 2 ounces of yarn left: 5/23

Completed: 5/27 @4:07 AM.  Time is again important, due to when the start of Stash Dash was…

 

 

 

 

Doctor Bella: Pattern is “Bella” by Jumper CablesMissBabs – YozaWhattaSkein!  I’m in love with the color, and the odd shape of the pattern makes it worth the roll-y stockinette parts. 😉

Colorway: Tardish

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Predicting 560 Yards.

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Shawl at it’s stopping point before StashDash Begins.

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Done. Total: 500 Yards / 457.20 Meters

Started: 3/13

Stopping Point B4 S.D. = 12 rotations of the pattern, then 3 rows of the edging: 3/28

Completed: 5/28

 

 

 

 

Thoughtful Silver Ringing: Pattern is “Color Affection” by Veera Välimäki.  This is my first time using 3 different colors of MissBabs’ Yummy 2-Ply (Fingering weight) yarn.  First time doing short rows as well, so we’ll see how it goes! 🙂

Colors: 1) Deep Thoughts,  2) Oxidized Silver, and 3)  You Rang?

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1,200 Yards Predicted

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At the stopping point. Just the last one-color section left to go!😉

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Done. Total: 645 Yards / 589.79 Meters

Started: 3/13

Stopping Point B4 S.D. = Beginning of the edging.  Also known as “the third color by itself.” : 3/30

Completed: 5/30

 

 

 

 

My Magrathea: Pattern is “Magrathea” by Martina Behm.  Haven’t done to much yet, as I was waiting for my longer ChiaoGoo needles to come in the mail.  They’re here now, so I should get more rotations on this done soon-ish.  It’s also my first experience knitting right from a chart, so it will also be a bit slow-going.  Sometimes I may not be in the headspace for it, even though I’m still having fun with the pattern!  :)  I’ve been using “Ol’ Blue Eyes” (a gradient set) from Leading Men Fiber Arts, their  Soliloquy base.  I LOVE how it’s working up right now and can’t wait to get back to it! 🙂

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650 Yards Predicted

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Right at the cusp of the Edging Charts. Perfect place to end before StashDash!😉

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Done. Total: 657 Yards / 600.76 Meters

 

 

 

Started: 2/29

Stopping Point B4 S.D. = The beginning of the Edging Charts: 4/12

Completed: 6/2

 

 

Singing, 22point5 Times: Pattern is “22.5 Degrees” by Martina Behm.  I’ve obviously found a designer that speaks to my weird style.  This one gets it’s name from the angle of the triangle that is formed from the pattern.  I’ve never had so much with Geometry in my life, thanks to Martina!  :)  I’m in LOVE with how the colors are working up with this pattern!

Colorway: Sing N’ The Blues Stripes by Kroy Socks

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Predicting 570 Yards

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Stopping Point! Sorry about the bunciness of the shawl. It’s scrunched up on the needles, as it’s out-grown the 40inch cable I have it on.

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Done. Total: 498 Yards / 455.37 Meters

Started: 3/20

Stopping Point B4 S.D. = 48 Rotations of the Pattern: 4/25

Completed: 6/13

 

 

 

 

 

My BFF <3: Pattern is “Progression Shawl” By Carin (of Round The Twist with Carin).  Yarn is Yowza by Miss Babs.  I started this with the intention of keeping it for myself.  When I found out a work friend lost her father, I wanted to make this for her instead.  I really hope she likes it!  It’s more than my wingspan, so it should hug her pretty well…

Colorway: BFF

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I absolutely LOVE the drape that is happening right now with this shawl!😉 560 Yards For S.D.

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Started: 6/16

Completed: 6/21

 

Mad As A Progressive Hare: Pattern is “Progression Shawl” By Carin (of Round The Twist with Carin).  Since I was giving the first to my friend, I wanted to keep one for myself.  LOVE this pattern! Using Miss Babs Yowza.

Colorway: Mad Hatter

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A Total of 560 Yards!

A Total of 560 Yards!

Started: 6/21

Completed: 7/19

 

 

Crazy Is As Crazy Does: Pattern is “Progression Shawl” By Carin (of Round The Twist with Carin).  Using Miss Babs Yowza.

Colorway: Bat S**T Crazy

560 Yards Total!

560 Yards Total!

Started: 7/19

Completed: 8/15

 

Weighing Drunken Watermelons: Pattern is “Yowza Weigh-It Shawl” By Susan B. Anderson.

Colorway: Drunken Watermelon

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560 Total Yards!

560 Total Yards!

Started: 5/29

Completed: 8/4

 

Redemption Mother’s Day KAL: Pattern is  “Mother’s Day KAL” by J. L. Fleckenstein.  I’m using the Betty base by Lucky Violet Color Company.

Colors: Maleficient

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Got back to Chart 1.

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Started: 6/16

Completed: 7/25

 

Green Steam: Pattern is “Age of Brass & Steam” By Orange Flower Yarn. I used Madelintosh, Tosh DK.

Colorway: “Taurus”

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225 Total Yards. Obviously my cat Mario isn’t as impressed with this yardage count. See? He’s just sleeping…😉

Started: 7/25

Completed: 7/27

 

Steam Run Amok!: Pattern is “Age of Brass & Steam” By Orange Flower Yarn. I used Magickal Miscellany’s DK base.

Colorway: “Amok! Amok! Amok!”

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350 Yards

Started: 6/16

Completed: 7/25

 

Socks: (a Total of 1,710 Yards Predicted before S.D) – 5 Total Finished.  I’ll say I finished 6, ’cause those black socks, man…

Girl of The 80s: The Pattern is “Afterthought Heel” By LaLa of TheKnitGirllls.  As if I needed a further reminder that I’m a girl born in the 80’s, this is it.  LOL.  The yarn is on the Thursday Base by Friday Studios.  I love the stripy nature of this yarn! 🙂

Colorway: “80s”

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Predicting 464 Yards

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Heels are waiting for the start of StashDash!🙂

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Done. Totals: 348.6 Yards / 318.76 Meters.

 

 

 

 

Started: 10/13/15

Stopping Point B4 S.D. = Both socks, minus heels: 4/1

Completed: 6/1

 

Carrie Loves The Blues: Pattern is “Blurred Lines” By Megan (of the Stockinette Zombies).  Yarn is Lollipop Yarns, Beefcake Base.

Colorway: “I Guess That’s Why They Call It The Blues”

Blurred Lines Sock #1

Blurred Lines Sock #1

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2nd Toe as it stands now…

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Started: 5/22

Completed: 7/7

 

 

Lia Loves The Rainbow: Pattern is “Toe-Up Socks With A Difference” By Wendy D. Johnson. Yarn is Lollipop Yarns, Beefcake Base.

Colorway: “Raise The Roof”

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Aren’t They Pretty? First sock done, second with the heel.

Started: 6/9

Completed: 6/22

 

Salan Loves All of The Patterning: Pattern is “Toe-Up Socks With A Difference” By Wendy D. Johnson. Yarn is Patons Kroy.

Colorway: “Sunset Stripes”

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Just a Toe, for now…

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Started: 6/21

Completed: 6/8

 

Socks For Marc N’ (The Hubby): The Pattern is “Afterthought Heel” By LaLa of TheKnitGirllls.  His uh… Yule present that I haven’t finished yet.  He understands, I think… ;(  They’re knitting up almost black, so I can’t do much with it in one go before I get bored (and perhaps, I go a bit crazy).  Kroy socks.

Color: Gentry Grey

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Predicting 332 Yards

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To the Stopping Point.🙂 FINALLY!

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Started: 9/16/15

Stopping Point B4 S.D. = Both socks, minus heels: 5/11

Completed: 8/8

 

Blankets: (a Total of 11,360 Yards Predicted before S.D.)

Nothing completed.

Scarves: (a Total of 1,850 Yards Predicted before S.D.)

Nothing completed here either! I’m such a failure…  But, there’s always next year, right?

Other:

Dolled Up In Teal: The pattern is “Hush Hush” By Libby Baker.  I wanted to make something special for first garment.  It’s looking good so far! :)  Using Red Heart, Comfort Sport.

Color: Turquoise

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Predicting 1,716 Yards

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Started: 1/4

Stopping Point B4 S.D. = Up to the straps: NA.  Didn’t make any change since I first premiered this project.  So mad at myself, but there it is…  5/25, I’m calling it good until I get it back in the rotation during S.D.

Completed: 8/10

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Blanket For Mary: Pattern is “Grandma’s Favorite Dishcloth.” Am making this 144 sts wide for a Co-worker.

Colorway: “Baby Ombre”

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About Half-way into the decreases, I can finally spread out the stitches on the needles. 400 Total Yards.  Unfortunately, I never got a finished photo… Deadlines…

Started: 5/26

Completed: 7/20

 

Washcloths For Mary: Pattern is “Grandma’s Favorite Dishcloth.” Am making two for a Co-worker.

Colorway: “Baby Ombre”

2 Totaling 120 Yards. Never got a FO picture of this one either...

2 Totaling 120 Yards. Never got a FO picture of this one either…

Started: 7/20

Completed: 7/29

 

Milo For Older: Pattern is “Milo” By Georgie Nicolson.  Yarn is Bernat Softee Baby Solids & Marls. This is for the same Co-worker’s eldest daughter, so she can match the new baby.

Colorway: “Baby Pink”

300 Yards. Never got a FO picture. But Sandy (not the mom-to-be, BTWs) loved the larger one so much, she agreed to hold it up for me at the Party!

300 Yards. Never got a FO picture. But Sandy (not the mom-to-be, BTWs) loved the larger one so much, she agreed to hold it up for me at the Party!

Started: 7/20

Completed: 7/31

 

Milo For Baby: Pattern is “Milo” By Georgie Nicolson.  Yarn is Bernat Softee Baby Solids & Marls. This is for the same Co-worker.

Colorway: “Baby Pink”

185 Yards

185 Yards

Started: 6/23

Completed: 6/28

 

 

Previous Updates Notes:

Update 7/8:  Since last time, I’ve finished a few Socks.  Worked on a few Other things as well.  I have also updated the Shawls section with a few other plans for WIPs.  They’re quick knits, so they may also get done while S.D. is going on….  As of Today, I have 5,441 Yards / 4,975.25 Meters already finished.

Update 6/22:  Since last time, I’ve finished a few Socks, and a few Shawls.  I have decided to condense the blog entry to the categories you see above, and I will let you know which sections I’ve updated every week or so….  I’ve re-organized everything by date of completion/how much I have left to finish.  I’ve also added any other projects I’m thinking of finishing before the end of the Summer.  The Other section has grown a bit as well.  As of Today, I have 4,264 Yards / 3,899.002 Meters already finished.

Update 5/30:  Since last time, I’ve finished a pair of Socks, and a few Shawls, so you know which sections to go to….  Today, I have 3,206 Yards / 2,931.566 Meters already finished.

Update 5/30: I’ve started casting things off, so that’s the biggest news of this update.  Shawls got finished the most, but I’m sure the other categories will be updated soon-ly…  I’ve also included a 6th section.  Stuff that I didn’t allow for when I was making my crazy plans for Stash Dash originally, but I’m still planning on including in my meterage.  I’ve also gotten rid of the link to my knitmeter.  Reason?  The dumb link wasn’t updating like it should.  So, when I do my updates up top here, I’ll just tell you what I’m up to in total yards/meters.  And yes, I’ll give both as a record.  Today, I have 1,555 Yards / 1,421.86 Meters already finished.

Update 5/25: The last few days before Stash Dash begins.  I’ve decided that the pre-S.D. points will end tonight.  I’m updating everything with pictures so you can see how far I’ve gotten.  Wish me luck on the rest of my crazy journey! 🙂

Update 5/17: Another quick update today.  I’ve been working on a few things since the last time I posted.  Two have been updated under the Shawls section.  The Socks section has been updated as well.  I’m adding the Mother’s Day KAL shawl that I started to this list.  I have another repeat of the pattern to go before I’m done.  I’ve also added a blanket (the Blanket section) that I’ve started for a Client, who wants it by the start of June.  May not finish it by the beginning of Stash Dash, but I’ll update it as I go along.

Update 4/25: Just finished another stopping point in my “Shawls” Section.  Wanted to tell you about it almost immediately, but as I finished that point at about 3AM after a long work weekend, I wanted sleep more.  Sorry…  Hopefully, I’ll have another stopping point finished by Wednesday.  We’ll see how that goes…

I also have a Mother’s Day KAL I need to start the 29th, and a sock KAL I need to finish before then too, so we’ll see which pretty wins out…

With this update, I’m adding the date I got to the stopping point on each of my projects so that you know what parts I’m up to.  So if you check out the other sections, if you want to know.  If you don’t, I’m not going to be mad… ;)  I’m also including new pictures for all the project changes I’ve been making, as well as updates that I’ve been wanting to make for a bit.  IE: project names after receiving new yarn colors, etc…

I also found out that the Tetris blanket won’t count if I’m just seaming the pieces together.  I think I can make it work.  Wasn’t really thrilled with the boarder as I had written in the pattern, anyway.  So I’m going to do a border, kind of 10-stitch style and put that into the pattern for those that want to try this second way. (more detail about that once it’s complete…)

Update 4/11: Just finished another stopping point in my “Shawls” Section.  I also did a bit of changing in the “Blankets” section.  Just click on the links above, and you’ll be able to see the changes for yourself! 🙂

Update 4/4: Just a quick update under my “Shawls” section.  I finally got the yarn I needed for the remaining shawls for Stashdash.  SOO… This means that I was able to get them started!  :)  I also got to a few more of my “stopping points” before Stashdash starts.  One is under my “Socks” section.  Click the link above, if you just want to jump to them!

Update 3/29: Just added the colors I’m using in each project, a few updated pictures (as I got to the stopping point on a few), as well as a new shawl.  What can I say?  I’m addicted to them! 🙂

Update 3/21:  Hello Fans!  I think I have the plan in place.  It will seem like a lot, but it is what it is….  A challenge to myself.  I’m challenging myself to do 21,366 yards during StashDash this year.  If you were wondering, that translates to 18.96K of yarn.  To do this, however, I need to do a bit of prep-work.  To this end, I have already cast on all but 2 of the shawls I’m planning on doing.  Hell, all of the projects I’m planning on challenging myself with have been recently started in anticipation of the goal I’ve set myself, or have been sitting on the needles for a longer time than I originally planned on them being.  So, what you see following will be the list of what I’m planning on challenging myself with as well as in-progress photos (or finished dates when StashDash comes about).  Wish me luck!

Hello to my awesome readers!  I have decided to participate in Stash Dash with TheKnitGirllls again this year.  Stash dash will start 5/27 this year and end 8/15.   I’m planning on 15K, but we’ll see how it goes.  I’m still in the planning stages.  I’ll update you here when I know exactly what my game-plan is official.  I have some time to plot and plan, after all…  – Silver, 3/14 –

Non-Serial Reader (Almost)

I’ve been doing some reviews for series this year, but I wanted to let you know my thoughts on the Non-Serial books I’ve been reading over the course of this year.  Here they are by Month.  Hope you enjoy my thoughts as much as I enjoyed writing them down.

I’m including a “Jump-To” Hyperlink system here.  That way every month, you can just check back what has changed.  If you’ve been living under a rock, if you click the Months below, you will be brought to that month’s list of books I’ve read…

  1. January ’16
  2. February ’16
  3. March ’16
  4. April ’16
  5. May ’16
  6. June ’16
  7. July ’16
  8. August ’16
  9. September ’16
  10. October ’16
  11. November ’16
  12. December ’16

 

 


January:

The Princess Bride

The Princess Bride – Abridged version that was eventually made into the movie.  I squeed when I realized HOW much was put in there.  Also, William Goldman did an awesome job of explaining EXACTLY what he took out of S. Morgenstern’s original version and why.  What you see in the movie is pretty much how the abridging story came about.  I’ll recommend that fans of the movie also read the book too.  But, movie first.  It makes the descriptions of the abridging parts easier to swallow.

 

The Librarian Principle

The Librarian Principle – Just some fluff reading I found on Audible.  I needed a break from the FBI series I’ve been listening to on Audible, so I found some fluff.  I honestly found myself blushing for how much fun the reader seemed to be having with the book at times….  That’s all I have to say about that….

 

As You Wish

As You Wish!

As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess Bride I have to say… very well done. I laughed, I cried, and I geeked out quite a bit at the recollection of their memories. Loved every moment and never wanted to put it down. A must-read for all fans of the book and movie!!!!!!!🙂 And as I did, you’ll “have fun storming the castle!”

 

Inside Charlie's Chocolate Factory

Inside Charlie’s Chocolate Factory: The Complete Story of Willy Wonka, the Golden Ticket, and Roald Dahl’s Most Famous Creation – This book gave me a further look into the world of Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.  I’ve always loved the movies and book.  Didn’t know there was so much history behind the scenes, so to speak.  I recommend it to everyone who’s a fan of the book!

 

Switch A Wish

Switch A Wish – I found this book on Goodreads, as the author was one of their Best New Authors.  It was a welcome change from the more serious books I’ve been reading so far.  It reminds me of Freaky Friday, in that people switch bodies for awhile.   M.B. Earnheardt  does an awesome job of bring the concept to life.  She introduces an interesting way for a married couple to get couple’s therapy without having to go.  It was a pretty interesting read and made me think of all the stuff I had bottled up, that could have hurt my relationships if I had let it go on…  Wow!  Well done Ms. Earnheardt!

 

Update: 2/3:  Just had a fan girl moment!  The author just reached out to me herself and followed me!  Squee!  Thank you again M.B.  Let me know when you’ll be coming out with your next.  I’ll be there to read it first thing!

 

Zelda

The Legend of Zelda: Hyrule Historia – Let’s just put it this way.  It’s a mix of two of my favorite things.  The Legend of Zelda series of videogames, and comic books.  Here we get a glimpse into the videogame’s creator as he looks back at what he intended for the series, and gives us a glimpse into the upcoming games.  It’s basically a history of The Legend of Zelda, so it made my heart squee when I saw it on sale on Amazon as a new book.  Glad I purchased it!

 

My Knitting Book

My Knitting Book By Ms. Lambert – I had the knitting pattern book bug for awhile in 2015.  This is the last one.  Glad I waited to read it.  Needed a change of pace, as it gave me a glimpse into the minds of knitters who came before me.  It gave me a few ideas for patterns to try down the road as well! 😉

 

Plan as You Go

The Plan-As-You-Go Business Plan – I had the urge to study a bit on how to make my business grow.  I got a few ideas for how to make things more solid in my business-life.

 

Business Planning

Business Planning For Dummies – Not really a Dummy, but I will admit that there are some things I need help with.  This book helped learn some of my weak points.

 

EtymologiconThe Etymologicon – I love learning about the Etymology of words, don’t get me wrong, but this book was pretty boring.  The reader did his best to make it entertaining, but yeah..  I got through about a half hour->40 minutes of listening before I skipped to the end to see if I was to expect more of the same.  Yup…  The author took one word and defined it, and gave it’s roots.  Used the last word in that rant and did the same.  I think the concept was to bridge a gap between Etymology and Icon, which would have been an interesting concept, but the author’s way about going about it was just….  annoying.  I dunno.  You may like it, but I surely didn’t…

 

Strange CandyStrange Candy – Laurell K. Hamilton MUST be commended on her ability to adapt to different supernatural beings and make us want to read about them.  This collection of stories gave me more of an understanding of how her genius mind works.  Not only Anita Blake and vampires, but Fairies, Shifters, and many, many more.  I LOVED this short story collection!  Well Done! 🙂

 

The Phantom of the OperaThe Phantom of The Opera – Any fan of the Movies and Broadway Play MUST read the story in it’s entirety.  I also recommend listening to this audible version I found.  The reader (Ralph Cosham) does a great job of keeping your attention and bringing the story to life!  I’ll probably come back and listen again once I finish the list I have planned for this year, I loved it THAT much!  Well Done!  The Angel of Music was always my favorite part of this book. I’m so glad I finally got a chance to read this book in it’s original form! Reader was pretty good too!🙂

 


February:

Dracula

Dracula – 2/15: My first impression of the novel, according to my review on goodreads.  “OMG! The readers on this audio version are doing a good job bringing the story to life. I read this once when I was younger, and don’t remember liking the book this much! Can’t wait to listen to more! :)”  That summed up my experience with the book, to a T!  I loved it! 🙂

Harry Potter Series – I’m calling this series as non-serial, only because they’re so few of them, based on the rest of the book series’ I’m planning on reading soon-ly.

HP Stone

15th->17th: Harry Potter & The Sorcerer’s (Philosopher’s) Stone: From Goodreads:”There’s something so satisfying about listening to Tim Dale read through one of my favorite books. Some of the voices were so close to the actors in the films that I thought I would squee so loud people would think I was crazy when listening to this book in public. Well done!🙂 ”

HP Secrets

17th->19th: Harry Potter & The Chamber of Secrets: No review on Goodreads, but I really sucked this book up.  I love that the reader knows the book so well, and tries to give a good voice to each character! 🙂

HP Prisoner

19th->22nd: Harry Potter & The Prisoner of Azkaban: From Goodreads:  “:) I’m in love with the books all over again! Well Done Tim Dale, for making them shiny and new! :) ”

HP Goblet

22nd->24th: Harry Potter & The Goblet of Fire: From Goodreads:  “This was 21 hours of pure entertainment! As with the last 3, Jim Dale does an awesome job reading one of my favorite Series. I have to say, though… Sometimes he confuses male/female voices, which makes it all the more entertaining to me! ;) ”

 


March:

HP Phoenix

February 24th->March 2nd: Harry Potter & The Order of Phoenix: From Goodreads: “See, when you haven’t read the series in awhile, you find new parts to love about it. The first couple of read-throughs years ago were great, but reading it again when you’re older just make it that much better. Still, in most cases, the book is better than the movie when it comes to expressing this wonderful story.  Having it read to you by someone with a pretty good sense of J.K. Rowling’s characters makes it all the better! Well done! :) ”

 

HP Prince

2nd->6th: Harry Potter & The Half-Blood Prince: From Goodreads: “Just :):):)  .”  To continue in this vein, there were a lot of tears, laughter, and “oh, I didn’t remember that part” going on as I listened to Tim Dale read this one!  I think I loved listening to it as much as I loved reading it the first few times I read it.  I have to say, the movies really DON’T do this book a service.  All the small nuances I loved never made an appearance in the movies, for some odd reason…

 

Wrapped In Comfort

Wrapped In Comfort – 3/7.  From Goodreads: “VERY pretty shawls. I love getting ideas out of books/magazines! :)”  I can’t wait to try some of these shawls!!!

 

HP Hallows

6th->10th: Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows: Already about 9% in.  Had to take a break.  It’s about 21 hours long.  After a few hours, I needed to do something else…  But I’ll be back to it soon-ly I think.  I’m already pretty hooked!  :)  From Goodreads: “You know me. I laughed, I cried. I even geeked out at the parts I haven’t read about in forever!🙂 Too bad this was the last one. May have to read it again soon-ly…

 

Closely Knit

7th->27th:  Closely Knit: I loved reading this book about a wonderful bunch of knitters.  Heard about the book from TheKnitGirllls.  It got me thinking that I’ve been anti-social of late, and I need that to stop.  LOVED this book!  Almost wish there was more of it…  🙂

 


April:

Update 4/25: I’ve been absolutely HORRIBLE about not reading anything other than books that are part of a longer established series.  I’ll try to be better about that in May.  But for now, I’m calling this month good, on that front.

I maybe got 1% read in Outlander, so I think I may count this one this month…

Outlander

From Goodreads on March 10th: “I read a bit, then I decided I wanted to listen to another book. If I could, I’d take back “beginning” this book for another time. As I can’t, I’m putting this into hibernation… ”  I think I still agree with these sentiments.  I’ll try again in May when other books aren’t calling my attention…

 


May:

Update 5/17: Alright.  I’ve been a bit better over the past few weeks with my reading.  Pretty much a mission, if I’m going to be honest…  But here goes! 🙂

Mischief

4/25->5/2: Mischief: This was an audiobook.  It featured a wonderfully creative female lead, who just happens to fall in love with a creative bad boy.  First impressions of one another lead to a story that becomes a comedy of errors, and one of growing love.  From Goodreads: “I started this one slowly, but then I got into the wonderful story.  A Wonderful story made even better by a wonderful reader. 🙂 ”

 

Rock Chick

5/2->5/6: Rock Chick: This is actually the first book of a short series.  I may actually read the rest of the series.  Heck, I already downloaded the next few books.  Just a matter of when, as I’m in the middle of another series that I’m listening to right now…  This first book, is the story of Indy and Lee, who have known each other since they were younger.  The children of two cops who are also friends.  Indy is obsessed with being her wonderfully different self.  Also, with Lee since she was younger.  As both grew up, Lee became more and more dangerous and started to dissuade Indy from her obsession of him.  After 10 years of her trying to ignore her feelings, she gets into a spot of trouble and needs Lee to get her out of it.  Comedy ensues, as well as a wonderful love story.  The reader was pretty good too.  I’m hoping the second book in the series  is just a s good, and can’t wait to find out.

 

The Gunslinger

5/7->5/8: The Gunslinger: This is the first of Steven King’s ‘Dark Tower Series.’  This is not the first, nor the second time I’ve read through this series.  I’m obsessed.  Saw this on Audible, and decided to give it a try.  Let someone read the story to me for once…  From Goodreads: “I’ve forgotten how AWESOME this book was. I read it a few years ago, and for some reason…. I just got it through my head again. This time, the wonderful story is being read TO me by a wonderful reader. It’s the PERFECT combo! Well Done!”

 

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000038_00074]

5/9->5/10: Big Rock: This was just a bit of fluff between the first and second of the new series I’ve been reading through.  Sometimes, you need something light…  At first the main character is a pretty big asshole, who only cares to get his rocks off.  Then he needs to impress one of his Diamond Business Tycoon Father’s Investors, and begs help from a woman to pay his fiancé.  They end up falling in love, and he changes.  It’s an interesting story told in the male POV.  I couldn’t put it down.  :)  I also like the fact that the title has several meanings…

 

The Drawing Of The Three

5/10->5/15: The Drawing of The Three: This is the second of Steven King’s ‘Dark Tower Series.’  Also not the first time I’ve read through this book.  When I made the decision to listen to The Gunslinger, I also downloaded this one.  As you do…😉 My only comment on Goodreads is “:)” Which just about sums up my thoughts about this series… 🙂

 

The Waste Lands

5/15-> Current: The Wastelands: This is the third of Steven King’s ‘Dark Tower Series.’  See my comment from above.  So far, so good.  I’m obsessed with this series so far.  Love the characters and I’m just getting to the part of Blaine the damn pain…

Update 6/5: Finished this one 5/17. It was an awesome story met with an awesome reader who really got you into the story every time you left the book for any length of time.  I didn’t, but if you did, you would be alright.  We learn that even Roland was wandering aimlessly until he finds the path of the beam that will take him to his beloved Tower.  We are joined by Jake (after he has “died/not-died” and a Billybumbler named Oy.  We hear this several times, but “Blaine is a pain, and that is the truth!” They must wake the pain to get out of Dodge, so to speak! 🙂

 


June:

Wizard And Glass

May 17th-> June 5th: Wizard and Glass: I’m really not surprised this one took me as long as it did.  It’s got SOO much happening in it.  We start off with a journey aboard Blaine the pain.  I love how Eddie’s previously dumb jokes save their bacon during the Riddling contest.  It’s then, that Roland sees Eddie’s true worth, and they learn to respect each other better.  We also see a different side of Roland as he tells the story of his True Love Susan.  We see that the hard-as-nails Gunslinger can also be soft as well.  We learn that although he has been hard on his Ka-Tet over the past couple of books, he has also come to love and respect them. A trip through a land like Oz also shows us that he believes HE will be the reason the Ka-Tet breaks, after they learn about his past.  They prove him wrong, and in an awesome way!  You’ll have to read it to find out what I’m talking about.  My review from Goodreads: ”🙂 OMG!  I’m still in love with this story, and it was even better by the reader!  Well Met!  And “Ka Like the Wind!”🙂 ”

 

The Wind Through The Keyhole

June 5th->Current: The Wind Through The Keyhole: I just started this one.  It’s #4.5 in the series.  It’s new to me, as I never knew that there was a book between the “major” books in the series.  So it’s a first for me.  It’s made even better by the fact that Stephen King is reading the story to me himself!  :)  LOL!

 

Update 7/26: This one took me until the 11th of June to read. Let’s be honest.  The most I remember from this book, is that Roland was telling a story that he had heard from his youth.  So “Yay!  Storytime!”🙂

 

It Itches

June 21st: It Itches: A Stash of Knitting Cartoons by Franklin Habit. I absolutely LOVED this book.  I enjoyed every second of his essays and cartoons.  Here’s my review from Goodreads:  “Franklin is an amazing writer & cartoonist… I practically rolled on the floor with laughter from his cartoons. At times, these were only funny to a knitter. Or a Knitter’s Significant other. I honestly would recommend this book to anyone who wouldn’t mind some dry humor!🙂 ”

 

Wolves Of The Calla

June 11th->22nd: Wolves of The Calla by Stephen King. I’ve read this book before, but there’s something about listening to someone else read this wonderful story to me. My Review from Goodreads: “OMG! I loved reading the book, but listening to it was even better! I can’t believe that this wonderful reader won’t be able to do the next one…. ”

 

Song of Susannah

June 22nd->July 4th: Song of Susannah by Stephen King.  Once again, I had read this one before,  but I enjoyed having someone else read Stephen King’s wonderful story. Don’t get me wrong, having Stephen write himself was an interesting twist, but it was a “pretty d-bag move.” I just thought it was an interesting twist, but having read that comment from someone else that reviewed the book, I’ve been thinking about that…  I dunno… It’s neither here, nor there.  It made for good reading, either way…

 


July:

The Dark Tower

July 4th->13th: The Dark Tower by Stephen King. I’ve always loved this story! Also, having this story read to me made it even better. The twist at the end makes it even better. Sometimes, readers get mad at writers for having weird twists in their stories, or not resolving it to their satisfaction.  However, as I can attest, sometimes our characters dictate the storyline for us… This seems to be the perfect example of how Roland has been egging King on since he first appeared on the scene.  I had my moments of being mad at King’s killing off of important characters, but I do understand in the end…

 

The Hunger Games

July 13th->17th: Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. I’ve seen the movie, but never read the book. I had the pleasure of listening to a wonderful reader.  Carolyn McCormick did a wonderful job portraying the Games, and the love story that develops. I pretty much ATE up this book, and didn’t want to stop listening to it!🙂

 

Catching Fire

July 17th->19th: Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins. I’ve seen the movie, but never read the book. I had the pleasure of listening to a wonderful reader.  Carolyn McCormick did a wonderful job! I never wanted to put it down!🙂

 

Yarn Harlot

June 22nd->July 20th: Yarn Harlot: The Secret Life of A Knitter by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee. This book was simply wonderful! Stephanie is very witty, and had me glad that my stash isn’t as large as I think it is…  I mean, her bit about the yarn in the piano made me roll on the floor laughing… :)  Any knitter needs to read this one, at least once!  It’s simply brilliant! If you’ve been knitting as long as I have, you’ve probably experienced many of the blunders that she mentions.  Well done! 🙂

 

Mockingjay

July 19th->22nd: The Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins. I’ve seen the movie, but never read the book. I had the pleasure of listening to a wonderful reader.  Carolyn McCormick did a wonderful job portraying the story!🙂

 

Cinder

July 26th: Cinder by Marissa Meyer. This was an interesting take on the Cinderella story that we all know and love.  My review from Goodreads:

🙂 I couldn’t put it down! Pretty much read it straight through without stopping! I’ll have to download the next when my next audible credit comes through!🙂

 

At Knit's End

July 26th->27th: At Knits End: Meditations for Women Who Knit Too Much by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee.  I LOVE this lady.  She totally gets me.  My review from Goodreads:

I knit, I laughed. I even cheered some! This book reminded me that you should NEVER be afraid to be who you are. A knitter who doesn’t care what other people think of you, or what you knit with. Well Done!🙂

 

Death By Cashmere

July 27th->August 1: Death By Cashmere by Sally Goldenbaum. This was a cute little book.  It’s a part of a series, and I may get back to the series later.  I just needed a mystery between the romance books recently. This was EXACTLY what I needed!

 


August:

Security

Aug. 4th: Security by Gina Wohlsdorf. Loved this book.  As evidenced by my review on Goodreads: “Like, DUDE! It’s a mystery who the narrator of this book is, up until the last %10 of the book. He’s someone who’s witty and a bit different. He literally gets to watch two murderers try to take out his girlfriend and her friends in a “Murder Hotel” all from the ‘comfort’ of his control-room chair. He helps where he can, but he’s literally stuck in one position that makes the reader understand how it ends. I highly recommend this book! Trust me, you’ll be glad you did. And if you’re like me and have an Audible credit to burn… I recommend getting the Zach Villa version of the book. He’s a pretty good reader, who gives more character to this wonderful mystery narrator. Well done, all around! :)”

 

Dead Until Dark

Aug 4th->8th: Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris. This is the first book of the Sookie Stackhouse books. Ever since I started watching True Blood, I’ve been meaning to read the first one in the series. My review from Goodreads: “I absolutely LOVE the TV series, so I was surprised to learn that I hadn’t read this book yet. So, I got it on Audible, and sat down to listen while I knit. I absolutely LOVED this book. The reader made the book even better!🙂 ”

 

Cupcakes1

Aug 15th: Cupcakes, Trinkets And Other Deadly Magic by Meghan Ciana Doidge. I started this right before midnight, and couldn’t stop listening to it.  My review from Goodreads: “A cute book.. At times, I found myself screaming at the stupidity of the main character, but that’s ok. I still enjoyed it quite a bit.”

 

Burn For Me

Aug 16th->Current: Burn For Me by Ilona Andrews. Just started it, and I’m only 30 minutes into it.  I’ll let you know a bit more about it when I finish.

 


September:


October:


November:


December:

Starlet, Star Bright…

Hello everyone!  Hope your week went well!  There have been some VERY exciting things happening in my neck of the world.  I was invited to read a preview of Catherine Coulter’s “Insidious” by the publishers directly!  I’m SOOO glad that I took them up on the offer, let me tell you.  The Book release was on 8/9, and I was supposed to have posted this teaser/review then.  But, you know how I do…  Always late.  But, I promise, there’s a reason for my delay this time.
It officially came out Tuesday, and I’ve already read this book twice.  One as the preview that they sent to me, and the second as an Audiobook.  I loved it THAT much! I mean, just read the Synopsis of the book that they sent me, and I think you’ll understand just WHY I got hooked right away.

 
InsidiousBookJacket“Insidious is the twentieth thriller in #1 New York Times bestselling author Catherine Coulter’s FBI series. FBI agents Savich and Sherlock must discover who is trying to murder Venus Rasmussen, a powerful, wealthy society icon. They soon find out that the danger may be closer than expected.

Venus Rasmussen, a powerful woman who runs the international conglomerate Rasmussen Industries, believes someone is poisoning her. After Savich and Sherlock visit with her, someone attempts to shoot her in broad daylight. Who’s trying to kill her and why? A member of her rapacious family, or her grandson who’s been missing for ten years and suddenly reappears? Savich and Sherlock must peel away the layers to uncover the incredible truth about who would target Venus.

Meanwhile, Special Agent Cam Wittier leaves Washington for Los Angeles to work with local Detective Daniel Montoya to lead the hunt for the Starlet Slasher, a serial killer who has cut the throats of five young actresses. When a sixth young actress is murdered, Cam comes to realize the truth might be closer than she’d ever want to believe.

With breakneck speed and unexpected twists and turns, Coulter’s Insidious will leave you breathless until the shocking conclusion.”

 

Riveting, huh? I thought so.  But then, I’m in LOVE with Catherine Coulter’s work.  I mean come on, the woman is a wonderful writer and I always love her work.  If you haven’t had the pleasure of reading one of her books, click the links below.  You’ll see a list of her wonderful stories.  You won’t be sorry, I promise! 🙂

 

Catherine Coulter’s Social Links:

 

My Take:
The first read through of this book went so fast, because I was invested in Ms. Coulter’s wonderful story.  I’ve always loved the characters of Savich and Sherlock, but this time we get to know their son Sean a bit too, which is pretty awesome.  We also get to know a bit more about their artistic sides as well as their ability to think through a mystery really quickly.  Once the first readthrough was done, I simply wanted more of this wonderful story.  I decided I wanted to have several mediums to read this book on, so I kept my pre-order of the book on Audible as well. For this book in the series, there was a dual readership going on.  Both Renee Raudman and MacLeod Andrews did a wonderful job of bringing the voices in this wonderful book to life. Not only could you tell that they enjoyed the story as they were reading, but there were a few accents that were used, to make this rich story even better.

 

My Goodreads Review:
As soon as I finished both versions of this book, I made sure to review it on Goodreads, as well as leaving a comment for Catherine on her blog.  Here’s what I wrote there on Goodreads.
 

I absolutely LOVED this book. It had more mystery elements than I remember of the series, but there was definitely the usual “wow Savich figured it out pretty fast” element right at the end. I listened to this through Audible, and I really liked the dual-readership they had going on! All around, well done!🙂

 

But, sometimes reading is believing.  Read the book, and let me know what you think.Also, you’ll have to read the book for yourself to know…

InsidiousImage4Mock1

 

Insidious can be found on MANY different Mediums:

 

Hope you enjoyed my review as much as I loved the chance to review this wonderful book!  Till Next Time!  -Silver-

You Slay Me, Ms. Blake! ;)

Hello Fans!  Apparently, I have the book review bug.  I’ve been trying to balance my knitting with my reading over the course of the past couple of days.  I didn’t really have the brain power to do much other than sleep a lot and do a few rows on a pair of socks before giving up on it.  That and I also got sick of the clutter that has been growing on my Kindle since I got it.  There’s only so much deleting files off there that you can do before you get bored of it…  :)  Being sick in bed made me VERY antsy!  Once I had gone through the books that I wanted to remove off my Kindle, I was left with several series that I’ve been meaning to read and had downloaded to the device.  I realized that I wanted to read back through the “Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter” series by Laurell K. Hamilton more than the other series’ that I had there.

Some of these books, I’ve read before.  Some are still a mystery to me, and I’ve always meant to read the entire series in book order.  I figure if I document this journey here, then I’ll ACTUALLY do it this time around.  What do you think?

I’ll be hitting on some key points of each story, but not the whole thing.  It wouldn’t be fair to the author, and to you.  I hate having stories ruined for me, don’t you?  Anyway, to understand my obsession with the Anita Blake character, you have to simply read them for yourselves…

 

Here is the whole list of books in the series:

  1. Guilty Pleasures
  2. The Laughing Corpse
  3. Circus of the Damned
  4. The Lunatic Café
  5. Bloody Bones
  6. The Killing Dance
  7. Burnt Offerings
  8. Blue Moon
  9. Obsidian Butterfly
  10. Narcissus In Chains
  11. Cerulean Sins
  12. Incubus Dreams
  13. Micah
  14. Danse Macabre
  15. The Harlequin
  16. Blood Noir
  17. Skin Trade
  18. Flirt
  19. Bullet
  20. Hit List
  21. Beauty
  22. Kiss The Dead
  23. Dancing
  24. Affliction
  25. Jason
  26. Dead Ice
  27. Crimson Death (Due Out in 2016)

 

If you click the links above, you’ll be able to jump to each book as I write about them.  I tend to go on and on when I review books, so if you want to, you’ll be able to jump to each book’s review as I update this post over time.  As there are currently 26 books in the series, it’s going to take me at least a few weeks to read through and review them all…  So strap in, grab some coffee (and your project, if you knit/crochet), sit back, and enjoy my reviews (if you want…)!

And, Away We Go! 

 


Book 1: “Guilty Pleasures”

This book, I managed to read on 8/8.  I believe I had started it earlier in the week, but I can’t remember when I started it, for sure…

This is the book that started the whole bit of madness for me.  It’s here, that we meet several of our main characters.  The first, is the Heroine of our story, Ms. Anita Blake.  She’s a fierce woman who happens to be an Animator/Necromancer, a Vampire Executioner (think Vampire Hunter, but one who cannot kill a vampire without a legal Warrant – they’re legal citizens, don’t you know…),  a part of RPIT (police “Spook Squad,” pronounced Rip It), and (toward the very end), the unwilling recipient of 2 of 4 marks toward becoming Jean-Claude’s Human Servant.

Jean-Claude starts off as the 3rd most powerful vampire in the city of St. Louis.  With a bit of help from Anita, he becomes Master of the City.  He gives her the two marks without explaining to her what he was doing, and what they meant.  This in turn, gives Anita the power to resist Vampire Compulsion, and to become resilient to dying.  In turn, Jean-Claude becomes head honcho when the former Master of the City (Nikolaos.  Read, Died) left the storyline by Anita’s own hand.

We also meet a host of minor characters.  Willie the Vampire, Edward “Death,” (a fellow Vampire Hunter) and Veronica “Ronnie” Simms stand out the most, as they are regulars in this story of ours.  If I remember some of the latter stories correctly… Either way, they are three of the individuals that Anita considers to be friends.  Or “friends that may eventually kill one another” in Edward’s case.  I guess if you have her back, you’re in tight with Anita, huh?

On top of the vampire battles, we do see Anita’s investigations with RPIT.  She’s considered to be one of the guys, so we see her making cracks at the other officers and trying to prove how much of a tough chick she can be.  Like I said before, I love her fighting and independent spirit.  She admits when she’s scared, but still runs into battle with the source of her fear.  Which is pretty bad-a$$ in my book! 🙂

 

I have to note that there are those out there that look for more reviews before starting a book, so if you feel compelled to read more, I did find this site pretty good for helping me remember spelling of names and the like.  I also used it for the correct reading order of these books too.  Be aware…  Maryse goes into a bit more detail when it comes to storyline than I do.  If you don’t want to be spoiled, please give it a skip.  Thank you…

 


Book 2: “The Laughing Corpse”

I started this book very late 8/8 and finished it shortly after 11PM, in between many fever-induced naps.

My fever was starting to break at some points, so the many graphic scenes while Anita and RPIT were investigating the murders didn’t bother me as much as if I was completely well.  An example?  There was one part where Anita and another cop were playing “gross-out” for a dinner at an expensive restaurant.  Anita ended up winning by throwing body parts at him and telling a series of tasteless jokes while doing so.

So besides the large number of murders being investigated, we start to learn more about the extent to Anita’s Animator powers.  She has to deal with zombies destroying her home, large mutated zombie parts, and a zombie who got away from the person who raised him from his grave.  At the very end, the bad guys get eaten by zombies Anita had raised form an entire graveyard.

Anita, and us by association, learns exactly how powerful her connection with Jean-Claude (both in power, and in sexual tension) is.  We finally start to get a sense of what Anita, as the most powerful Necromancer, being Jean-Claude’s Human Servant will be mean for both of them.  Both start to experience power spikes toward the end…

Though we can see how tough she is, we also get scenes where Anita shows off her venerability and innocence.  When she starts having nightmares of the crime scenes, she grabs Sigmund ( Her stuffed penguin) and cuddles with him.  In fact, when the zombie attacks her at home, she freaks out only after she sees that her penguin collection has blood on it.  When Jean-Claude comes over, while playing Anita’s bodyguard, he smirks at her collection.  Here, we can see him trying to get to know her better as a person, and not just a power base.  I have to give him brownie points for that! 🙂

 

I have to note that there are those out there that look for more reviews before starting a book, so if you feel compelled to read more, I did find this site pretty good for helping me remember spelling of names and the like.  I also used it for the correct reading order of these books too.  Be aware…  Maryse goes into a bit more detail when it comes to storyline than I do.  If you don’t want to be spoiled, please give it a skip.  Thank you…

 


Book 3: “Circus of the Damned”

I started this book really early 8/10.

This book starts off right away with Anita knee-deep in monsters’ politics.  She is immediately slammed with a RPIT investigation that leads to her fighting for her life.  All this, within the first 20% of the book.  I’ll just leave you with that little bit, and this hint of how the book is going for me so far.

REALLY BIG Snake! 

Updated 8/12: Finished this book at about 6:45PM last night.  Word of warning, this analysis will kind of read like a summary, but I think I hit a lot of the main points without giving away too many of the book’s secrets.  You’ll have to read the book to find out, don’t you?

Now that I’ve finished this book, all I can really say is HOLY COW!  Ms. Hamilton didn’t disappoint with this book, as usual.  Anita is her usual charming self.  All the while, she finds herself in more and more trouble as the book goes on.  After the battle with the large snake that I just mentioned, Anita must contend with a failed animation ritual, a chase by armed gunmen, a car chase that ends with her car being totaled, a fight with Alejandro (a Master Vampire older than Jean-Claude) and his followers, and then being forced 2 marks upon her by Alejandro.  Winning all that is not the end for Anita.  After arriving home, she is kidnapped and is brought to an abandoned cave.  She gets chased by a Lamia (an ancient snake shapeshifter), the Lamia’s minions, and Alejandro through a water-filled cave.  She gets bit by one of the Lamia’s minions and escapes the cave only to be picked up by Mr. Death himself, Edward.  When she gets home again, Richard arrives to go on their date.  Before they can, the snake bite gets to Anita, and she blacks out .

Jean-Claude does the third mark on her as she sleeps, which makes her pissed off enough to go to another older vampire by the name of Mr. Oliver, to give Jean-Claude up.  Once she realizes what a petty bitch she was being, she warns Jean-Claude that Mr. Oliver was coming due to her betrayal.  The battle between Master Vampires and their armies comes to a close once Alejandro makes Anita his full Human Servant.  When both Alejandro and Mr. Oliver are distracted with their “win” over Jean-Claude, Anita stakes and rips out their hearts.  She passes out after she finishes with Alejandro.  She almost dies when Alejandro does.  With this, we learn about the connections a Human Servant and their master.

At the end, we learn that by becoming another’s Human Servant, she no longer has the marks with Jean-Claude.  Anita seems to be almost… sad when she learns she is free of him.  Dare I say that this means she is falling for him?  I’ll have to read the series more to find out .  . .

Also in this book, we are introduced to Richard Zeeman, Stephan, and the concept of werewolves.  We also get to see the beginnings of a love triangle forming between Jean-Claude, Richard, and Anita.  Hey, if I had both those yummy guys fighting over me, I wouldn’t be fighting it as hard as Anita seems to be… LOL! 😉

 


Book 4: “The Lunatic Café”

Started this book at 9:30, shortly after writing down my impressions on “Circus of the Damned.”  I like having a way of cleansing my palate between books in the series…  I finished just before 8PM.  Under 24 hours?  Not bad.  I guess I read faster than I think I do.  Cool!

With “Lunatic Café,” we seem to have more of a balance between Anita’s love life, and her numerous jobs she must fulfill.  We do see a large number of the deaths happening “off screen” if you will.  But that is not necessarily a “BAD” thing, in the grand scheme of things.  We get too much gore in one book, we’re uncomfortable.  Too much battle, we tend to see it as par for the course.  When you have a mix of both the soft and hard side of Anita, we have a well-rounded story.  So a hardy congratulations MUST go out to Ms. Hamilton for that!  Well done! 🙂

Besides the battles at the beginning (between Anita and a whole bar of werewolves) and the battle toward the end (with the people responsible for doing the killings), we don’t see much of the violence being done by others.  A lot of this book seems to be centered around Richard’s proposal, Anita’s response to his beast, and Jean-Claude’s reaction to possibly losing her.  We see that both men don’t want to loose the higher ground with each other, nor they want to loose Anita.

They bait each other, while Anita sits there and squirms.  It almost puts on an air of comedy, as it is almost a complete distraction to all of the evil  that is surrounding Anita and her job.  She wakes up at the last minute and realizes what is happening.  Both with the case, and the larger picture.

But still, the concept of two hot men fighting over me may make me uneasy and somewhat distracted as well.  No matter what “flavor of monster” they were,  I think I would still enjoy the show…  I mean come on…  A girl has needs.  This IS supposed to be a Paranormal Romance, isn’t it?

 

I also keep learning more and more about the author as I dive more into this series, just by reading her afterwards.  It’s interesting to me to learn about how each author I read gets their inspiration and how they keep on going when they get to the more… unsavory… or difficult parts in their book.  I know from experience, that putting a beloved character of one’s own creation in mortal danger is not an easy task.  If you’re lucky, I’ll be sharing with you that little bit at a later date…

I’m going to leave you today with a quote Ms. Hamilton has in her afterward to this book.  It’ll help me explain where she got her inspiration for the character of Anita.  Read it and try to argue that it doesn’t sound like someone (or some character) you’ve come to know…

When I was a little girl, younger than my daughter is now, I learned that you don’t stand up to the bad guys because you think you’ll win.  You stand up because it’s the right thing to do.  You stand up for those weaker than you, which at the time in my life meant younger than me.  You put yourself between them and harm, not because you’re sure you won’t get hurt, but because you’ve decided that to sit and watch them come to harm is wrong, and you cannot merely sit and watch evil.  There comes a time when you have to step up and be willing to take some damage, because it’s the right thing to do.

Now do you see why I like this series?  I like rooting for Anita because she dares to stand up for what she believes in, no matter what others think of her.  I recognize a little bit of myself in her, and I can relate to her…

 


Book 5: “Bloody Bones”

This one, I’ll start reading a bit later.  I need to take a break to knit for a awhile….  My notes will come later…

Updated: 8/17

I had a busy weekend (you know, I work weekends…), so I just finished this book at 9:30 or so today.  I have to say that it was worth delaying the ending until I could devote my entire attentions to it.  If I’m doing too much, then I don’t digest things as well as I should…  That wouldn’t be fair to the author, or to myself…  In this book, We get many firsts, & a few new characters that stick, and many more that flicker out of the storyline fast.  It was definitely worth the wait.  I would recommend that you try to read as much of this book in one sitting as you possibly can.  It’s THAT good! 🙂

The first character’s role that I want to talk about is Anita’s sweetie, Richard.  We see him long enough in the book to remember that they are together and that she had the foresight to make sure Richard is made aware of her trip out of town.  However, that PDA (Public Display of Affection) scene at the school where he works was pretty hot, and deserves a mention! 😉

We meet Vampire Master of the City (in Branson, MO) Seraphina,  Vampire Pedophile Xavier, Lawyer Raymond Stirling, “Bloody Bones” bar owner & Part Fey Magnus Bouvier, and Fey Boogieman Rawhead and Bloody Bones (Bloody Bones, for short).  Together, these  5 characters keep Anita VERY busy!  They comprise of the most evil characters that she has  ever come up against.  Each character has their own “brand” of evil that makes Anita (and the reader as well) very squeamish.  This is the first time that we see the concept of the fey, and a vampire using a sword to kill people, and even the concept of the bad vampires drinking fey blood to gain more power.    Another first, is a vampire pedophile, who takes young victims to turn and “play with.”

Three recurring characters come back for a bunch of fun!  Larry, Jason, and Jean-Claude all bring a bit of backstory to this novel, and to the larger big picture that is this series.    As Anita’s un-official shadow, Larry learns more about how to do the Animation and Vampire Hunter gig.  He tries to  put in to words, WHY Anita does some of the things that she does.  We also see him start to become more confident with the blood and gore, even though there were things that he still does not understand.  He and Anita still fight over the fact that she tries to protect him.  Anita may only be 4 years older than him, but she feels the need to protect him from the worst of it.

With Jason, we learn the concept of a Pomme de Sang.  He is Jean-Claude’s constant blood donator.  Anita witnesses Jason’s addiction to being used as a blood bag by Jean-Claude.  He clearly gets a hard-on from the being bitten.  This throws Anita off, as Jason is again only 4 years younger thank herself.  She feels the need to protect the young werewolf from the world around them, even though she senses that he has seen  as much bad as she has.

In “Bloody Bones,” Jean-Claude and Anita’s relationship gets further along.  When she gets stumped with the vampire investigation, she calls him in to introduce her to the Master of the City in the area.  While together, they face incredible danger that causes Jean-Claude to die.  Then Anita willingly opens up a vein to save his life, which causes her to face the fact that she is falling in love with Jean-Claude.  Then they share a steamy tub scene, halted only by Anita’s want her sexual escapades to mean something.  She has ultimately want to be married/engaged before she takes that step.  For her, sex means that she’s devoted to her partner.  At this point in the series, she is dating both Jean-Claude and Richard, so she doesn’t want to cheat on either one with the other.  An interesting idea, to be sure…

 

Since Anita is called away from home  on Animation business, let’s talk a bit about what she is asked to do.  She is asked to raise zombies that may be over 2,000 years old that are in a cemetery that hasn’t seen a grave marker in generations.  Over the course of the book (due to what we and Anita learn as the truth of the matter), we learn that Anita no longer wants to do this, even though she clearly has the juice to do so.  Anita ends up raising 20 zombies that end up being 3,000 years dead and uses them to protect herself from a few of the bad guys (resulting in a few people’s deaths).  This fact, would put her under the microscope of the law and possibly get her the electric chair.  She refuses to cover her tracks and destroy the one witness who would tell, even though he is one of the bad guys in this book.  Which wins her some more brownie points in my eyes!

 


Book 6: “The Killing Dance”

Well, the title makes me not want to wait to jump into this one! 🙂 Hmm…

Updated: 8/26

Wow!  It’s been a few days since I’ve updated.  Sorry about that.  At least this time I’m able to comment on two books now.  I’ve been trying to think of how I want to introduce this one, as there’s been quite a bit going on with the series since the last book.  There are several “firsts” that happen with this book that are important to the storyline as a whole.  Let’s start off with the easy parts…  The bad guys!  They’re easy to define/introduce, compared to the rest of the stuff I want to discuss.  You have Sabin (Vampire), Cassandra (Wolf), and Dominic (Human Servant).  They can be termed the “Evil Triumvirate” of this story, if you will…

This is also the first novel, that we see Anita taking a back-seat to police investigations while she deals with what can be termed as “personal business” even though it involves all of our main characters (and then some!).  We see the first vampire murder crime scene, even though we’ve only been told by Anita that she tends to investigate them with RPIT.

Anita also gets introduced to her first Contract.  Edward calls her and tells her that someone has opened up a contract hit on her, and that he was at the top of the list.  He waits to refuse the hit, and ends up solving who wanted her killed that badly.  He ends up bringing in “backup” (Harley) when he and Anita go after the person that wanted her dead.  Harley is killed by Anita, and ends up owing Edward a favor, which is pretty much in a position you do NOT want to be in!…

Now that we have gotten to the easy part of this telling, let’s get to the juicy parts of this book!  :)  I’m sure that’s what you’ve all been waiting for!!!  Let me just start off by saying, that the name of the title has to do with the Throwdown that happens between Richard and Marcus.  Finally!  I know, right?  We’ve been waiting breathlessly for this for 5 books!

We’ve heard about what an evil guy Marcus is, but until this moment, Richard has never had enough to go back into battle with Marcus for control of the pack.  Richard has enough power and is DEFINATLY Alpha enough for the position, but could never take over control of the Pack.  Short of killing Marcus, Richard has done all he can to win over Pack members.  (I’m going to use the capital “P” in Pack from now on to let you know that I’m referring to the  “Thronos Rokke clan of werewolves” for short.)  So, here we have a new first.  Richard’s first kill, which completely tears him up!  He hates having to stoop to killing, but after Marcus threatens Anita (hint, the contract I mentioned earlier) he can no longer let Marcus’ tyranny continue.

Once he makes the decision to face Marcus and make him back down from the hit, Jean-Claude has the idea to create a Triumvirate of power in order to make sure Richard has the power levels he needs to defeat Marcus in battle.  Anita is her usual hesitant self to take on any more vampire marks, but together she and Richard put their feet down when it comes to their roles within the Triumvirate.  They tell Jean-Claude that they will be having an equal partnership within it, and he will not be dictating what role they have within it.  Jean-Claude agrees, and they end up raising a lot of power.  In the end of their ménage à trois (of sorts), Anita uses her Necromancer power to raise a lot of zombies and 3 vampires (Willie, Damian, and Liv).  If she doesn’t there would have been other ways that the three would have to feed that weren’t so pretty.  This causes Anita to be concerned for the Vampire’s safety as she puts them back in their coffins for the day.  At least now we know that she can raise vampires and put them back, if the need should arrive again…

After The Killing Dance, the Pack ends up eating Marcus.  Anita is so disgusted by Richard’s participation in this, that she runs into Jean-Claude’s waiting arms.  Once she has bathed and stopped her crying and being scared of Richard, she and Jean-Claude finally have sex.  I have to say, this scene is worth the wait! 😉

Richard gets pissed and ends up running away from the both of them.  However, there tends to be another plan in the works.  The “Evil Triumvirate” has their own plans in mind for the Triumvirate.  One final betrayal…  Jean-Claude and Richard are kidnapped and are put up on stakes.  Anita is kidnapped and brought to Gabriel and Raina, who she ends up killing.  The scene is pretty graphic, but you can’t help cheer her on when she does!  :)  Then she becomes her usual Heroine self and rescues the boys, after they raise power once more.  This further shows you why I LOVE Anita as much as I do! 🙂

 


Book 7: “Burnt Offerings”

Update 10/14:  Since I’m back to reading the book that got me started on this series, I thought it was time to take a break and update you on the others.  For some reason, I hadn’t felt like updating you on my progress until now.  I’m so sorry about that!  I’ve been doing a lot of reading and knitting since the last time we chatted about this series.  I originally started this book on 8/221 and finished it at 8/25 at 5:50 PM (so a damn long time ago.  Again, I’m sorry).  And yeah.  I wrote note as I went, including the date/time I finished each book, so don’t worry about that.

I think the only thing holding me back, was the fact that I started creating a list of new people we meet, and the people have been included to Anita’s “Protection List.”  Since there are a few, it was becoming QUITE the task…  lol.  In fact, there’s a quote I’d like to share with you.  In fact, Anita clearly states that a bunch of people that are on her list in a speech when she’s fighting Padma at the end of the book.  She clearly states that there are a long list of people that she would kill to protect.  All of the Pack, Wereleopard Pack that she inherited once she killed Gabriel (I’ll be calling them Pard with a capital P now), the Rat Pack, and all of Jean-Claude’s Vampires get put onto this list.  As there are a lot, then it becomes impossible to list them all!

For this book, I found that I need a bit of something to help me understand what Anita and Jean-Claude were saying to one another.  The two end up spending an increased amount of time together, as Richard has seemed to remove himself from their lives  Ms. Hamilton does her best to translate the phrases in her books, but there were some that you would have to guess at, unless you speak French.  Here’s the New Reference for French Phrasings I found that seemed to help me out…

There are a few new characters that show up in this book.  Some are good, and some are bad.  Let’s talk about the ones that will be our allies first… Nathaniel & Asher.  Each of these new characters surprised even the author about how long they would last in the grand scheme of the series.  For Nathaniel’s part, Ms. Hamilton just thought he would be a small part of this series.  I’ll show you how this changes down the road.  The same can be said for Asher.

In her own words, Nathaniel : “He went into the hospital because he let a customer tie him up and the customer gutted him (By the way, I didn’t make that up.  Actual crime.  Yeah, way creepy.  I find that true crime is far more disturbing to me than anything I can make up).”  We see that she thought that Anita would always see him as cannon fodder, based on their first meeting.  As we go on in the series, you’ll see why I already know that changes…

Regarding Asher: “But from the first moment we saw him, Anita and I thought Asher was beautiful.  We were afraid of him at first, because he was a bad guy, but he was always beautiful.”  His character comes to town to play the part of the vampire Council, but he decides to stay due to personal baggage with Jean-Claude.  We’ll learn more about that as we go, as well.

Our would-be enemies from this book include a few members of the Vampire Council come to town to assess Anita, Jean-Claude, and Richard’s seat of power and to assess if they are a threat to the Council.  It is also a visit based on a trial of sorts for the death of the Earthmover (from a previous book).  The important ones include Yvette (representing Belle Morte), The Traveler (we never learn his real name), and Padma (the Master of the Beasts).

Yvette has the power to rot all over her victims, and ends up traumatizing Jason, which makes Anita pissed off.  She brings Warrick, who has the ability to kill using pyrotechnics.  Warrick is the reason that Anita gets pulled into a fire starter case at the beginning of the novel.  Warrick ends up killing Yvette (and himself, as he is her servant) with his powers.

Anita challenges The Traveler to become a better leader for his people, when she discovers his power is the reason some of the vampires in town have gone off the deep end and started killing random people.  He is intrigued with her moxy, and they become friends after that.

The last person Anita has to worry about, is Padma.  He tries to take over all of the Wereleopards, Werewolves, and even some of the Wererats and turn them against Anita.  It is with this battle with Padma, that we learn that Anita carries the Munin (or ghost) of Raina as part of her Necromantic Powers.  Raina’s munin helps Anita fight off Padma.  Anita offers Padma his life for the life of his son Fernando.  Padma and the Traveler leave and all is safe in Anita’s world.  Minus her Personal life disaster (with Richard being MIA, for the most part), which really does not change throughout the series..

A couple of other things I need to mention about this book, is that Malcolm (another Master Vampire, and the head of the Life Church) may or may not have a Human Servant.  We’re not too sure at this point, as this question never gets answered.  The other thing I forgot to mention, is that Anita had a hit put on her and many of the leaders of the Were-Community.  The reason she was able to figure it out in time, was the yellow roses that Jan-Claude had “sent” her.  He usually sends a dozen red roses.  This bit of information keeps getting re-iterated throughout the book, to show that Jean-Claude has been around a lot more than Richard.  This tells me that Richard still has some hang-ups about killing Marcus and becoming the Pack leader.  Hell, Anita even calls him a Boy Scout due to this hang-up…

 

*Note: I have started to use Goodreads (as Silverluna), and will be giving this book a 5 star, as it shows more of Anita’s character, and all that she has to overcome!

 


Book 8: “Blue Moon”

From 8/26: Ooh!  I’m presuming that “Blue Moon” refers to the second full moon in any given month.  Since I just started this book early this morning, I’ll assume that this book will revolve mostly around Richard and his drama!  We’ll see if I’m right… 🙂

Updated 10/14: I had started this book on 8/25 and finished it on 9/2.  There are a few things about this book I would like to discuss.  Most of this book is learning about what Anita can do, as well as a little about the character of Anita as well.  Who she’s becoming, more like.  Anita is learning that she can heal her people through the Munin, and is learning how to control it.  We meet a Wiccan named Marianne, who is determined to teach Anita how to control each of her powers.  We learn more about Marianne as we go along.  We meet her while Anita and Richard are visiting another Wolf Clan’s territory, and she helps Anita through her discoveries with the Munin in that Clan’s Circle of Power.

The book centers around Richard [who we learn at the beginning has gone to Myerton, Tennessee (fictionalized town)].  We learn that Richard has been accused of Rape, and Anita goes to help clear his name.  While there, Anita gets in the middle of Werewolf drama, as well as drama with the local Master of the City.  The local Master believes that she is there to help take over his territory (since she brought both Asher and Damien, both powerful vampires, with her as backup), and the Myerton Ulfric (Verne) backs her up.  She kills both that Master, and his human servant while protecting Verne’s Pack.

Once this bit of drama is over, Anita gets schooled on how to make her Pard into a more cohesive unit by Marianne.  Anita learns to be less squeamish around her Pard’s nudity, and that the simple act of touch can make them closer.  The closeness helps them to become more powerful together.

When she is able to do this, she is told by Damien that he has become compelled to do her bidding.  We learn that Damien is her Vampire Servant.  With this knowledge, she makes him tell her the truth about how much Jean-Claude and Richard have learned about their power boosts since they have become a Triumvirate.  She learns that both knew how much the Vampire Marks would bind them together.  This makes her a bit pissed, especially when Damien tells her that both had also discussed the possibility of Richard sleeping with her as well as Jean-Claude.

Before she can get even more pissed at her two men, she is thrown into another battle.  This battle comes about when Niley (the guy that has been in charge of the investigation into Richard’s rape charges) and his men kidnap Richard’s mother and brother.   Anita hunts all of the men down (with the help of her allies) and kills them all.  We learn that Richard’s brother knew all along that he was a Werewolf, and that his Mother suspected.  Richard ends up getting mad at Anita, for her ability to kill to protect what was his to protect.

 


Book 9: “Obsidian Butterfly”

I read “Obsidian Butterfly” from 9/2 to 9/12 @11PM.

This book revolves around the relationship between Edward/Ted and Anita that she thought she had been cultivated with him over the years.  Edward asks her to come to his hometown in New Mexico to help him on a case.  We meet Bernardo, Olaf, Donna, Becca & Peter.  Bernardo & Olaf are Edward’s buddies that he uses as backup.  Bernardo keeps hitting on her, and he seems pretty harmless.  When they are investigating together, she is forced to prove that she knows him well.  This causes her to become intimately aware of his “assets.”  Anita learns that Olaf has become an expert in many forms of torture and butchery, and that she is in a lot of trouble.  Mostly because she is considered to be his “type” of victim.  The only thing stopping him, is the case and his loyalty to Edward.  Once the case over, he has been freed to do what he pleases…

Donna is Edward’s Fiancé, and comes with two children.  Becca is the youngest, and the most trusting.  Peter is the hardest to please.  He takes an easy liking to Anita, due to the fact that she kills so quickly.  She tries to save him from having to kill again (after he had to kill someone to protect his family).  However,  after he gets raped, Anita cannot stop him.  Nor does she want to.  Hell, I cheered when he killed the bitch that had raped him.

The case that Anita gets called in on, is one that is pretty gross.  A monster is skinning people.  As Anita goes into battle with the monster, she gets injured.  It Is during this injury, that she met Lenora Evans (a local Wiccan practitioner).  It is from Leonora, that she learns that by leaving Richard and Jean-Claude, she has also been leaving herself vulnerable to attack.

Once the monster has been neutralized, it is time to deal with Obsidian Butterfly (Itzpapalotl), a vampire who thinks herself to be a goddess.  Obsidian Butterfly had rolled Anita’s mind the first time that she met her, in an attempt to learn how a true Triumvirate (mainly Anita, Richard, and Jean-Claude’s) worked.  She ends up giving Anita the last bit of information she needs to go after the Red Woman’s Husband (a very old vampire who thinks that he is a god as well).

Anita does this shortly after dealing with the kidnapping of Peter and Becca by Riker.  She ends up killing all the men in the complex where they are being held, with the help of Edward, Olaf and Bernardo.  At the end, Anita goes home without interfering with Edward’s love life, as she has TOO much on her own love plate to talk…

 


Book 10: “Narcissus In Chains”

“Narcissus in Chains” was read between 9/12 (11:30PM) and 9/20 (11:10AM).  It revolves around a lot of Were (and personal) Drama.

We are thrown into the fray of this drama, when we learn that Anita has been attempting to mend some fences.  She starts with Ronnie and the rest of her Pard.  When they are in the middle of arguing about Jean-Claude’s roll in Anita’s life, Gregory calls Anita for help saving Nathaniel, who was in trouble at a club (the same as the title).

Anita shows up with a few members of her Pard, meets Richard and Jean-Claude.  Before they meet the kidnappers, the three of them must marry the marks and raise more power.  In this exchange, she gets the Ardeur.  Once they have done this, both Jean-Claude and Asher help distract Narcissus while she goes to rescue Nathaniel.  She finds that there are a few other Were animals being held as well.  She pulls them out as well.  She gets injured, and Gregory tries to take some of the damage.  When he does, he is in Leopard form, and she runs the risk of becoming a leopard for real.  Richard goes ape shit, and accuses him of “killing” the Pack’s Lupa by turning her into a leopard..  he brings Gregory into the Pack’s Circle of Power and challenges Anita to come get her Leopard.  When she does, she is joined by the Were Animals.  Richard sees the error of his ways, but another Werewolf Jacob tries to push his hand.  Richard doesn’t like that, so Anita and Richard fight him.

This is the first time that she has to feed the Ardeur, and she ends up feeding on Micah, a new Leopard King in town.  He is Nimira-Raj.  Together they are a married couple in the eyes of the Leopard community.  After hashing out what that means, there is a battle that happens.  Igor is killed, and Claudine is injured(both Were-rats) during this battle.

Since she is new at the Ardeur, she also ends up feeding on Richard, who doesn’t appreciate it.  In fact, he ends up breaking up with her stating: “And I don’t want to love someone who is more at home with the monsters than I am.”  He can be a right fair GIT when he wants to… (read here, AN ASS)

Lastly, in this book we meet Chimera.  He is what is called a Panwere.  A man that made himself into just about any Were-animal that he can possibly can.  He is the main bad guy.  Anita learns that he was once a Necromancer like herself.  This is important, as Anita keeps getting bit and ends up NOT turning into that animal she gets bitten by.  She fights him, and ends up killing him as well.  In this battle, she learns that both Micah and Jacob had been agents of his.  Micah has switched his allegiance to Anita’s side, and was nearly killed for it.

Once this battle is over, there is a Were-Animal Coalition formed to make sure that each group has projection from the larger groups.  She ends up becoming the head of it, as she is the one that suggests that they do this.

From “Narcissus In Chains” we get some more recurring characters.  Micah is one, as well as his bodyguards Caleb, and Merle.  Donovan Reese (the Swan King) makes a few other appearance as well…

 


Book 11: “Cerulean Sins”

I read “Cerulean Sins” between 9/29 (1AM) and 10/14 (3AM).

Anita’s hat of an Executioner is being brought back into effect, once she has been brought into a police investigation that left 4 people brutally slaughtered by a rouge and out-of-town Shifter.  It had been so bad of a slaughter, that the Governor of Anita’s state ordered her to kill the Shifter.  This shifter had been brought in by Leo Harlan, who has been contracted to hire her for a zombie raising overseas to help follow her.  After she kills the shifter, Harlan disappears back into the ether.

Besides the police case, Anita is confronted by more vampire drama, as well as some personal drama.  As the title suggests, Anita has to bring two new men to her bed.  The first is Jason, who insists that due to her Ardeur, he needs to “take one for the team” when Nathaniel collapses at work after she feeds on him one too man times in a day.  The second, is Asher himself.  His eyes are the color of Cerulean.  She does this, despite her squeamishness, as she wants to protect Asher from being used by a vampire by the name of Musette.

This Musette has been planning on visiting, but later on.  When she came into town early, jean-Claude didn’t have all ready for her visit.  It is during this visit, that Anita is also visited by Belle Morte (The head of Jean-Claude’s Vampire line) a few times.  Belle also manages to suck the energy out of Richard and Anita while both Jean-Claude and Asher are sleeping (after the three have become a true menage a trois).  She puts crosses on Musette’s door, and that stops until Jean-Claude wakes up.

Another by-product of the ménage a trois, is that Anita’s mind  gets rolled by Asher when her shields are down.  She gets pissed at that fact.  Mostly because now that she has been, she gets a taste of the orgasm that she had while they were all together.  That, and the fact that her shields had been down THAT much..  She ends up getting mocked by Jason (as now he knows how powerfully she is affected by orgasms in the moment now…), which makes her even more pissed that she allowed herself to get rolled.

The next night, there is a Banquet.  During that, Richard shows up and tries for a power play, which leaves them vulnerable.  Jean-Claude decides to stand up to Belle Morte while she is in the body of Musette, and succeeds in uniting Anita and Richard at his back with all of their animals to call & Vampires.  From his ability to do so, we learn that he has become his own Sourde de Sang (or leader of a bloodline), just like Belle.  This means that she cannot overtake any of his people.

Amongst all of the vampire politics, we learn that Anita is more comfortable sleeping in a large dog-pile of her Leopards.  Well, she is, until Zerbrowski teases her about it…  We also learn that Dolph is still not happy with her.  We see him go ape shit crazy when he learns that his son wants to become a vampire.  He also tries to scare the crap out of Jason, when he realizes that Jason has been at the crimescenes, and he is a Werewolf.

 

 


Book 12: “Incubus Dreams”

This is where I leave you for today, as I just started this one earlier this morning.  This is the last book in the series I have read, so the rest will be a blind read-through for me.  Wish me luck! 🙂

 

Update: 11/3

Hello again!  Just wanted to check in with you again with this series, as it has been awhile.  This book is a bit longer than the others, but that’s no excuse.  I’ve been overly obsessed with finishing a shawl over the past few weeks, so I haven’t been reading as much as I could be.  Well, that and the fact that I found a new game to play (don’t get me started on that, or we’ll never finish this update, trust me…).

I have to admit, I started the Anita Blake series by finding this book in my local Wal-Mart when it had just come out.  Then I went back and tried to find the whole series in my local library.  Since the whole series wasn’t there, I kinda gave up.  Then I had the bright idea (once I had a Kindle) to download all the books digitally.  My paperback of this books is just slightly used at this point….  Not that you can tell by the rest of my analysis of this book or anything…😉

This book has so much going on, that it may seem hard to follow my train of thought at times…  Just gonna warn you now…

 

Update: 11/25

Umm.  Sorry.  I just realized that I had left you hanging with the analysis of this book.  I had meant to go back and re-hash the happenings once I finished the next book in this series, but I guess this never happened.  Again, sorry…

This book revolves a lot around Anita, Jean-Claude, and Richard’s seat of power increasing almost too fast for them to be comfortable.  This is the base of all of the personal drama going on between Anita and her “boys.”  With Nathaniel (as her Animal To Call) and Damien (her Vampire Servant), Anita forms a new Triumvirate, which kicks up the original Triumvirate’s power levels.  There is a learning curve that Anita must learn, as she almost drains Damien of all of his energy several times.  Just because she’s fighting having to feed the Ardeur as much as she should be.

With this new Triumvirate, the trio learn that each individual within  the group will gain another’s base personalities the longer that they are together.  This includes more understanding, calmness, the ability to get angry at the drop of a hat, and even how well they seduce their bed partners.  Anita also learns that she also likes to have more than one man in her bed at one given time.  This, she learns while taking both Jean-Claude and Richard to bed,  Nathaniel and Damien, and even Nathaniel and Micah.

Anita also learns that if you love someone, you may have to do something that makes you uncomfortable.  Mostly with Nathaniel.  Before this book, she had always seen him as a younger brother who she needed to protect.  When she lets him move in with her and he is happy NOT being with her (for awhile, anyway), she starts falling for him.  In fact, she often describes her hang-ups with him.  He’s too agreeable, etc.  She doesn’t see him as the man he is, until he has to dominate her when she practically looses her mind to her Leopard while with a client.  Until that point, she only saw him as someone who was young and inexperienced (although he is a stripper at Guilty Pleasures).  She’s blown away by how she was his first real girlfriend, even though he’s done porn.

Another thing that I need to mention, besides the drama that is Anita’s entire world to this point, is that Malcolm hasn’t been blood-oathing the vampires that come to his church.  When Jean-Claude hears this, he becomes scared of what that will mean in the long term.  Especially after Primo (powerful vampire that J.C. has let into his territory) tries to take over things until J.C. and  Anita can blood-oath him.  It also happens to be something Anita needs to deal with in her job with the police, as she is called into investigate a Vampire Serial Killer.  It is through her Executioner role, that she ends up going into Malcolm’s church and killing a Federal Marshall turned Vampire killer.  During this battle, she meets Wicked and Truth (two brothers of a fighter vampire’s line -that these two had killed), who she blood-oaths to Jean-Claude.  She learns that the two were compelled to help her by both her Ardeur draw, and her Necromancer’s call.  This is VERY interesting to me…

 

5 Stars again, Ms. Hamilton!  Brava!!!

 


Book 13: “Micah”

This book is actually a novella.  It seems like it was meant to be a short story about Micah, and how he became a Wereleopard.  In previous books, we had only heard that his story was “violent.”  At this point, Anita (and Ms. Hamilton) left it there.  As Anita puts it “I figured you’d tell me when you were ready.  I was treating you like any victim of a crime.  Carefully.”  Or something to that effect.  The exact quote can be wrong, but you get the gist…

This story revolves around a few new and difficult firsts for both Micah and Anita.  It is the first time that the two of them have been completely alone since he came into Anita’s life.  Micah and Anita leave St. Louis to help an Animator friend (Larry, who’s wife goes into early labor) do a job for the FBI.  The fact that they haven’t been completely alone together since they started dating makes Anita squeamish once he mentions it to her.  She had no idea when they first left town  together.

It is also the first time that they’ve had a private moment to discuss the issues that have been (apparently, Anita had NO idea about said issues) brewing up between them.  We learn that Micah is still pretty traumatized by his attack and the change he went through at the start of his Wereleopard journey.  In fact, even at the end, he still cringes when he deals with the FBI agent that had found him in the woods after the attack…

It is the first time that we are hearing about Micah’s insecurities.  We finally realize that his pleasant and smiling face has always un-nerved Anita, and now we learn that this face was one meant to hide his pain.  Once they discuss his “story” if you will, Anita and Micah also start discussing his issue with true intimacy.  Especially based on his past sexual encounters with ex-girlfriends, who were none-to-gentle with his psyche.  We learn that since he has always been well endowed (both width and girth), he has always scared the women he would be with.  Anita tries to convince him that she is NOT like them, the only way she knows how.  By letting him be as rough as he would like…  Don’t get me wrong, it was a good scene, just not something I would like for myself…

This book also marks the first time that Micah has been at one of Anita’s Zombie raising.  He ends up helping her at the gravesite by bleeding and helping her a protection circle that keeps the zombie in.  Which is VERY helpful.  That is, until she gets shot.  Zombie kills the person it believes kills him, and Anita ends up in the hospital.  Nathaniel and Micah hang out and tease the nurses while they are waiting for Anita to wake up.

Going to give this a 5 star rating on Goodreads.  On to the Next! 🙂

 

 


Book 14: “Danse Macabre”

I read “Dance Macabre” off and on between 11/2 (at 6:30PM) and 11/25 (at 5:10PM).  I think I should explain the off and on part of that previous statement.  Much has happened in my professional life, as well as the life of my business.  Those will always come first, alas.  The other reason that I used that particular phrase, is that there is only a certain amount of Anita’s bitching about her life that I can take.  Yes, her life makes mine look that much easier and safe.  But still, you can’t take too much drama in your books when your real life is being bombarded by drama and stress.  Well, and to be fair, I was also getting our house ready for guests over the past couple of weeks.  This will give ANYONE less time for doing what they want to do…

Update 1/6: Well, now that the crazy of December is over, I can say that I didn’t do my analysis of this book any justice.  Or do this book ANY justice!  It was a VERY entertaining read when I put some time in to read it.  Anita’s character is a bit whiny, but I was able to deal.  But to be fair, she’s still learning about how her new powers work.  I feel like once she’s had some time to deal with it properly, then she’ll be less whiny.  I am still looking forward to the next, no matter my bitching about it…

 

 


Book 15: “The Harlequin”

“Started” this one on 11/25 @5:15.  Read a page, to call this one started.  Haven’t really touched it since then.  I usually work like a dog in the month of December, so I may have to read that one page over later on…  lol.

 

Update 2/1: I have to say, I didn’t remember what I had read, so I just started this book again.  I read this book “officially” from 1/20-1/27.  In this book, we find out that Anita and those that she love are in trouble again.  I believe the number of times that she almost dies was up to 3 by the end of the book…  The Harlequin are vampires that are supposed to be like Fight Club.  Rule 1, is that you do not talk about Fight Club.  That’s how The Harlequin are.  Spoiler alert, The Harlequin really WAS in town, but those coming to harm Anita’s loved ones were not Harlequin in good standing, so to speak…  I’m trying not to give away specifics, because I really DO want you to get a chance to read the book without being spoiled.  Something interesting I need to mention, is that Malcolm finally gives in about tying his people to himself once the big battle is going on.  Hmm.  Another interesting concept, is that Malcolm (as Anita Puts it: “The Undead Billy Graham”) wanted to go to confession, and Anita helps him find someone willing to hear him.  Hmm…

 


Book 16: “Blood Noir”

 

 

Started On 1/26.  Have read only 5% of the book, but it seems good so far!  Can’t wait to dive back into it! 🙂

Update 2/19: Finished this book on 2/6.  If you haven’t seen my Goodreads review, here it is “Gotta love all the metaphysics that have happened already. Even though she “just went home to meet Jason’s family.” Can’t wait to get to the rest. See how she deals with the aftermath…” This was written at about 44% of the book read.  After that point, the book got really addicting for me….  So much, that I didn’t even bother to write a secondary review.  It truly captured my attention from the very first.  Cannot wait until I can dive into the next…   But alas, busy work week = little -> 0 time to read what I want to read.  Hopefully soon! 🙂

 


Book 17: “Skin Trade”

Didn’t start reading this one until 2/14.  Wish I had had time before, but alas, busy work week = little -> 0 time to read what I want to read.  Hopefully soon I’ll be able to read more !  :)  Right now, it’s really intriguing  how messed up Anita’s life can get in the first 20 or so pages.  Can’t wait to see how she handles herself this time! 🙂

Update 4/13: I can’t believe this took me almost TWO MONTHS to finish???  Wow!  Even I’m in awe of how long it took me to buckle down and just read through the ending.  But, let’s be fair, I had another book series that I could listen to while I was knitting (Audible), so this one kinda took a back-seat (Gearing up for StashDash, and all).  I wanted to be fair to you, my readers.  If I had tried to read this series while working on some of the large amount of projects I’m currently in the middle of, I don’t think I would have been able to glean as much information for a review as I could possibly get.  To further note, I WAS able to read a chapter her and there while I was getting ready for work, just to keep my interest in the book.  :)  From Goodreads: “OMG! Even I’m astounded at how long it took me to read this one! Or how close I’ve been to the end for awhile. But as always, I loved the story whenever I’ve had time to devote to reading it! :)”

I have to say I love the mix that this series presents within itself.  Anita’s abilities make her a mixed bag, so to speak.  You have her day job as a Zombie Raiser, her moonlighting as a Vampire Hunter, her collecting Vampire & Shifter lovers in her personal life, and even her work with RPIT/Local Police forces.  With Skin Trade, we get more of her Police side.  IE: She gets to solve a  crime and fight with the police over her choice in bedmates & Lifestyle, as well as fight with the police against the evils of her Universe.  With the last few books, I was starting to think that all Anita was going to experience was her fights within herself.  While entertaining, these fights sometimes get boring.  There are so many facets of Laurell K. Hamilton’s wonderful character that we need to see them all, lest we get bored.

In Skin Trade, we get to hang out with Edward, Bernardo, and Olaf again.  Learn more about each one.  Although, Edward is a lot more ‘fluffy’ as he spills some of his fears and  we learn that he REALLY is falling for his Fiancé and her kids, which we would never expect from a guy with the nickname “Death.”  Olaf the Serial Killer that even Death respects is now become even creepier by falling in love with Anita (even offers himself up to the Ardeur when she needs to feed).  Bernardo shows us how much he doesn’t belong with the other two, in the final fight sequence.  But I DID happen to learn how the three have bonded enough to be “backup” for each other in times of fighting.  They work well together, and have seen the evil & nice sides of each other without running the freaking other way.

Once again while fighting & learning about Vittorio (an Evil Serial Killer Vamipire who decides to give her a Vampire Hunter’s HEAD IN A FREAKING BOX: I mean, who freaking does that!), Anita finds herself biting off more than she can chew while in the City of Sin.  Her mind gets rolled no less than 3 times.  Once from  a collection of Bibiana (The Queen of The Tigers, Chang, of Las Vegas) & Victor (Bibiana & Max’s {The Master Vampire of Las Vegas} eldest son) power, another from Marmee Noir, and the last from Vittorio.  When Victor manages to roll Anita, he becomes a liaison of sorts between his family and the Police.  He helps move the plot along when he can (Ie: helping to take down weretigers who were BAAAAAAD Kitties, or helping her forget her anger after the other rolling scenes have happened).  When Marmee Noir tries to roll Anita, she attempts to feed through even more Tigers in order to become more powerful and to save herself.  As much as a pain in the ass she has been, I don’t think I want to see her leave the storyline, as of yet.  Although, her body was bombed by Vittorio, who takes over the Rolling Sleep thereafter.  Through the rolling of Vittorio (who we later find out is the ‘Father of the Tigers’), she collects two more weretigers to her menagerie while in the midst of a blackout whereby she and a bunch of men engage in an orgy.  Cynric (a blue tiger, and only 16 – OY!  What such powers make her do.  I had to say, I kind a cringed when Anita realizes who he is as well) and Domino (black and white).  I have a feeling we’ll see these two down the road a piece…

I will leave you with this one thought…  When will the Police she works with stop being so judgmental.  If they realized how much she thinks her Supernatural side SUCKS, would they be so quick to judge her?  I’m thinking they wouldn’t…  It’s a life lesson we can take away from this series, if nothing else….

 


Book 18: “Flirt”

Started reading this one RIGHT after I finished Skin Trade.  Mostly because I was intrigued with the title.  Will we finally see Anita learning to flirt, instead of being the blunt freight-train she has been.  Especially in her large amount of relationships?  We’ll have to see!  I’m only about 10% in at this point, and can’t wait to get back to it! 🙂

Update 4/16:  Finished the book!  I flew right through it.  It was pretty short, so I finished it over the course of a few nights.  I was just ADDICTED to it!  It shows another facet of Anita’s powers, which is what I’ve been crazing.  It’s good to see that Anita can still almost die without her powerbase (her men) and still manage to kick ass and come out the victor in a fight against a madman who wants his wife raised as a zombie (so he can flirt with her) and a Lion Rex intent on doing her harm!

If I had to choose my favorite part of this book, it would be that it began as a funny conversation Ms. Hamilton had with a few of her friends over a dinner where one of her friends (who sounds remarkably like the character of Nathaniel, if I’m being honest) started flirting with a waiter.  Then it all went from there!  :)  Too good!

 

My Favorite quotes from the book:

1) “Harm None is the rule, Ellen!  Bad Witch, no cookie!”

2)”He would never be able to fit into our lives.  He would always have to be King, and I had enough kings in my life.  I needed men who were okay with being the power behind the throne, not the ass in it.”  (I think she’s referencing her strained relationship with Richard here, what do you think?)

 


Book 19: “Bullet”

Started this book immediately after finishing “Flirt.”  The title alone grabbed my attention.  Haven’t read more than a few pages, but I’m already hooked!  So, I’m off to read more of it! 🙂

Update 4/27: Finished this book at 2:30 this morning.  Almost posted here while everything was still fresh in my mind, but I thought that would be a TAD obsessive.  I really couldn’t put this book down last night.  I think I started my reading night last night at about 10:30, and was at 60%…

We learn about a large Metaphysical Shit Storm headed Anita’s way.  It requires that Jean-Claude become the Vampire Council in the US, and that they start collecting Tigers of A Different Color, if it were.  As Anita is considered to be the Queen of the Gold Tigers, she needed to roll the rest of the colors, and she does so through subversion, sex, and metaphysical ties.  Some against their wills.  She manages to get under the Harlequin’s crosshairs again…  But mostly to help them take control over those European Council Members being taken over by that body-less bitch “Marmee Noir.”  I honestly thought we were done with her, when her body was blown up, but I think she’s a worse pain in EVERYONE’s ass!  At one point, Anita and her people were almost taken over by those that had been possessed by her spirit.  Anita, Jean-Claude, and Richard fight their influence, and channel the potential of death into a freaking orgy of mass proportions.

Then there’s the face off with Cookie Monster (Haven), where he just about kills Nathaniel.  She blows his freaking brains out, and I’m like “FINALLY!  He was a royal pain in the ass!”  She heals Nathaniel and the rest of the people that were hurt during the last metaphysical emergency I just mentioned…

 


Book 20: “Hit List”

Started this book as soon as I woke up this morning.  Thought I read that the body Anita was looking at was Edward, and my first thought was “No, no, no!  Anita needs a friend that is not a lover…”  ‘Cause quick glances are awesome!   LOL!  :)  Then I actually sat down and re-read, and was like “Well then!  I shouldn’t try to skim pages while I’m only half awake…”  Since it starts off with Anita and Edward investigating a body, I thought I needed more coffee before delving back into the (that and the CRAZINESS that had happened only moments ago…).

There was so much going on, story & timeline-wise in “Bullet”, that I think even Ms. Hamilton needed a break…  I think she uses the Metaphysical Emergencies as the heavy in her series, and the Police/Zombie storylines to be the less-heavy.  Let’s see if this prediction proves to be right!  Until Next Time! 🙂

Update 6/5: I finished this book on 5/19. It seems that I’m getting good with my predictions… I like that there was a clear break from the heavy metaphysics of the last book.  With this one, Ms. Hamilton brings us a bit of “levity” with a gruesome monster hunt.  There are times where Edward and Anita make fun of themselves, as well as the situation to make it a welcome break.

 


Book 20.5: “Beauty”

I read Beauty all in one night (5/19).  But let’s be honest, it’s pretty much a short story.  A very HOT short story, but a short story nonetheless.  I’ve always craved a scene between Asher, Jean-Claude and Anita that uses all that she has learned over her years with Nathaniel and his needs.

Book 21: “Kiss The Dead”

I read this one between 5/20 and 6/5 at about 12:30 this morning.  It was a pretty good Monster Hunt.  Anita learns that she is starting to want to step back from the Police Cases, especially when the big bad vampires that come to town start to use “harmless” looking baby vamps to stir up the media.  At the very end, Anita faces a bomb threat where her metaphysical links with so many of those being held hostage really bring the issue to a head before it gets too much out of control.  I appreciate that there was a bit of drama at the end, as well as a chance for Anita to show off some of her newly figured-out abilities.

Book 21.5: “Dancing”

So far, so good.  I literally just started it 5 minutes after getting home from work today.  I’ll have to get back to you on this.  So far, there’s a picnic with Anita and her cop friends planned.  Couldn’t tell you much more about what’s going to happen, because I haven’t gotten too far…  But it seems like it will be a good one! 🙂

Update 6/6: Very quick read.  I loved every second of it! 🙂

Book 22: “Affliction”

I started to read this book, but then I realized that Dancing comes first, according to Ms. Hamilton.  So far, it seems like it will be…interesting.  Micah’s family matters start us off.  Don’t know how it will end, but the start is a pretty good hook!

 

Book 23: “Jason”

Book 24:  “Dead Ice”

 

I hope you enjoy my analysis of each book as I have had in writing them!  -Silver-