Friday, November 14, 2014



Avoid crazed shopping crowds!
Keep calm and carry on at home with these great
Merr-E Holiday Treats from Pocket Star eBooks!

Tiny Tim is all grown up in this continuation of Charles Dickens’s beloved holiday classic A Christmas Carol, and this time, a certain ghost shows him the true meaning of Christmas cheer.
THE PERFECT GIFT by Dani-Lyn Alexander
It’s the season of second chances in this heartwarming, contemporary holiday romance where two single parents find each other—and another chance at love—in the most unexpected of places.
An estranged father and daughter meet for the first time at Christmas in this touching holiday story that will tug at your heart, from USA TODAY bestselling author Rexanne Becnel. 
#1 New York Times bestselling author Christine Feehan’ romantic holiday novella Rocky Mountain Miracle is available as a standalone eBook for the first time at a discounted price!  When Cole Steele, a womanizer rumored to have killed his father, meets Maia Armstrong, a veterinarian rumored to practice magic, the sizzling romance could melt all the snow on his Wyoming ranch! 
BRANDED by Colette Auclair
The third lighthearted romance in the award-winning Aspen Valley series takes readers on a wild and dreamy ride through the beautiful valleys and mountains of Colorado.
UNFAITHFUL by Karyn Grice
Fiction/Romance/African American
Like her previous highly acclaimed novel No Strings Attached, which “[channeled] the challenges that independent, strong, and intelligent women face trying to find love with dignity, humor, and finesse” (The African American Literary Review), Unfaithful presents a realistic view of the struggles within a relationship through a story with universal appeal. 
BLOND CARGO the second Jack Bertolino thriller by John Lansing
Thriller/Mystery/Private Investigators
“An unyielding pace, vigorous characters and explosive ending” praises Kirkus Reviews of Blond Cargo by John Lansing, former writer/producer of Walker, Texas Ranger and Co-Executive producer of the ABC series Scoundrels.  Suspense Magazine also praised “A fantastic read…This extremely fast and well-thought-out thriller will remind some of James Patterson’s early works.”
A LAST GOODBYE an Ali Reynolds e-novella by J.A. Jance
J.A. Jance’s popular sleuth, Ali Reynolds, is finally getting married to longtime love B. Simpson—they wanted a simple Christmas Eve wedding, but nothing is ever simple around Ali.
They all sound amazing, I've added a few to my shelf already and will be posting some mini reviews in the coming week. 


Sunday, November 9, 2014

The Other Story by Tatiana de Rosnay | Review

The Other Story by Tatiana de Rosnay
Published: April 5, 2014
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Pages: 320
Buy Now: Amazon | Book Depository
*received from Raincoast Books for honest review

Vacationing at a luxurious Tuscan island resort, Nicolas Duhamel is hopeful that the ghosts of his past have finally been put to rest… Now a bestselling author, when he was twenty-four years old, he stumbled upon a troubling secret about his family – a secret that was carefully concealed. In shock, Nicholas embarked on a journey to uncover the truth that took him from the Basque coast to St. Petersburg – but the answers wouldn’t come easily.

In the process of digging into his past, something else happened. Nicolas began writing a novel that was met with phenomenal success, skyrocketing him to literary fame whether he was ready for it or not – and convincing him that he had put his family’s history firmly behind him. But now, years later, Nicolas must reexamine everything he thought he knew, as he learns that, however deeply buried, the secrets of the past always find a way out.

Page-turning, layered and beautifully written, Tatiana de Rosnay's THE OTHER STORY is a reflection on identity, the process of being a writer and the repercussions of generations-old decisions as they echo into the present and shape the future.

I wasn't sure what to expect from this book, but I was surprised in what I found. I didn't overly like the main character, Nicholas, but I have a feeling you aren't suppose to like him right away. The story seems to be one of self-realization and honestly by then end you see that Nicholas doesn't necessarily like who he has become either. 

He is a very self centrered man, who is riding the tide of having published a best selling novel turned best selling movie. He is big on social media and the gory of being a star writer. Funny enough, he has writer's block aka no new idea's when it comes to writing his second novel. I think the problem lies with the fact that he used a real life story to base his novel on in the first place and his life now is not something he can really draw from. 

His backstory is laid out in alternating chapters - you see how Nicholas grew up, you learn about his parents and the story of who his father really was. He tracks down his family history and this in turn gives him the idea for his great novel. 

He takes things in his life for granted and pines over past relationships that he himself ruined. It's interesting to watch him think back on these times and finally come to the realization that he let fame take over his life.

I think this novel might have been a little different if it had completely explained his father's secrets, how they truly affected Nicholas and maybe to have him be less self-absorbed and arrogant. He needed a reality check, but it came too late.

From the reviews I've read online, Tatiana de Rosnay has written some amazing books, so I am not giving up on this author yet. I'll try one of her other books soon.

About the Author:
TATIANA DE ROSNAY was born in the suburbs of Paris and is of English, French and Russian descent. She is the author of 8 French novels. Tatiana de Rosnay is married and has two children. She lives in Paris with her family. 

Friday, November 7, 2014

Easy Last Minute Hallowe'en Costume | Fortune Teller with Bonus Crystal Ball

The easy part is the actual costume:
-long flowing skirt
-a top that has a little looseness to it
-some scarves (one for your hips and one to tie around your head)
-lots of necklaces and bracelets

Now the really fun part - making the glowing crystal ball. The supplies I used included:
-glue gun
-strings of sequins
-gold paint pen
-2 paper/styrofoam plates
-battery operated LED light (from dollar store)
-cardboard cute into a strip 

First, take the styrofoam plates and glue them together so they make a stand.
Next, glue the sequins around the rim of the top plate.
Then, take the cardboard strip and make into a circle using tape and glue it to the top of the styrofoam plate.
Add sparkles to the balloon and blow it up just large enough to sit nicely on top of the cardboard circle. 
Use the glue gun to draw patterns on the cardboard for effect.
Then colour the entire setup with the gold paint pen. 
Add the touch light inside the cardboard circle. 
Then tape the balloon in place. Taping it allows you to slide your finger between the balloon and cardboard to turn the light off and on. 

TA DA - you have a sparkling and glowing crystal ball.
I found the idea for the crystal ball here.

And for additional fun, I added a little dollar store crow to my shoulder and named him Poe.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Library Reservations

How many of you out there use the services of your local library? I was a frequent flyer at the library years ago and only once in a while lately. But I am solving that today. After browsing the online site I realize just how many wonderful and amazing NEW books that have lately.

They have so much to choose from and they even have a spot on their site where you can add books you want them to buy. So why do I buy books, when I can borrow so many for free? Who knows! But I think I'll be spending more time at my local library.

I've added what seems like a million to my reservation list and then just like Goodreads, I'm adding an amazing list of books I want to read - so pretty much I'm importing my entire WISHLIST to it to make it easy later to nab some great reads!

AND... I can download ebooks and audiobooks right from home using Overdrive!

Here are the top picks for my wishlist right now:

And did I mention.... my local library is having their FRIENDS OF THE LIBRARY BOOK SALE! They always have amazing books for AMAZING prices. I am totally going at lunch. I love that the library is a two minute walk from my work. 

So how much do you love your library? Do you visit often? What is your favourite thing about your local library?
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