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TEXASTITCHER's Photo TEXASTITCHER Posts: 59,152
8/22/11 8:43 P

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Remember, this is for books finished in July. For books in August, see that thread.

Jo Ann
Starfish - (CST)
Be not afraid of going slowly; be afraid only of standing still. - Chinese Proverb



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JESUS.SAVED.ME's Photo JESUS.SAVED.ME Posts: 1,531
8/15/11 9:29 P

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The Hunger Games trilogy. First 2 books get 5 emoticon Last book gets 4 emoticon

Crystal from Vancouver, B.C.

"You're on the line between breaking point and breaking through"


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CD5770485 Posts: 3,008
8/4/11 9:01 P

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State of Wonder - Anne Patchett .... 2* (IMO - not as GREAT as everyone made it out to be...VEEEEERRRRY SLOWWW until about 100 pages before end)

BEN1126's Photo BEN1126 Posts: 3,688
8/4/11 8:33 P

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Thanks Texastitcher for a job well done! We appreciate it. emoticon

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8/2/11 7:53 P

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How does the rating work? I am new here. I read alot but don't know how to do this. Thanks for the help

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8/2/11 4:46 P

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Great job!


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, I am now in hospice care for metastatic breast cancer, but I'm not letting cancer stop me from Sparking!

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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ANOTHERTAG's Photo ANOTHERTAG Posts: 450
8/2/11 7:28 A

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thanks TEXASTITCHER

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TEXASTITCHER's Photo TEXASTITCHER Posts: 59,152
8/1/11 10:42 P

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The following books were not rated. Remember to include a rating with your listing.

A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier
Beaten, Seared, and Sauced: On Becoming a Chef at the Culinary Institute of America - Jonathon Dixon
Bluff Island Rescue Service - Stephanie Hubbard
Diary of a Blues Goddess - Erica Orloff
Doc
Dragon Bound - Thea Harrison
How Not to Look Fat - Danica Lo
How Pursuit - Wendy Etherington
I'll Walk Alone - Mary Higgins Clark
Little Bee - Chris Cleave
Outlander - Diana Gabaldon
Picture Perfect - Jodi Piccoult
Rules of Civility - Amor Towles
Season of the Witch - Natasha Mostert
Taliesin - Stephen R Lawhead
The Alchemist - Paulo Coelho
The Help - Kathryn Stockett
The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake - Aimee Bender
The Talisman - Stephen King
The Tea Rose - Jennifer Donnally
The Wednesday Letters - Jason F Wright
Water for Elephants
Zorba the Greek


Jo Ann
Starfish - (CST)
Be not afraid of going slowly; be afraid only of standing still. - Chinese Proverb



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TEXASTITCHER's Photo TEXASTITCHER Posts: 59,152
8/1/11 10:41 P

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The following books were the lowest rated books (2 or less stars)

Revenge of the Pink Flamingos - Donna Andrews - 2
The Bitch Proof Suite - De-ann Black - 2
The Half Life - Jennifier Weiner - 2
The Weed that Strings the Hangman's Bag - Alan Bradley - 2
We Bought a Zoo - Benjamin Mee - 2
Oxford Girl - Plum Sykes - 1


Jo Ann
Starfish - (CST)
Be not afraid of going slowly; be afraid only of standing still. - Chinese Proverb



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TEXASTITCHER's Photo TEXASTITCHER Posts: 59,152
8/1/11 10:40 P

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The following books received a 5* or higher rating. If a book is listed multiple times, different individuals gave it that rating.

2nd Chance - James Patterson - 6
A Dance with Dragons - George RR Martin - 6
A Game of Thrones - George RR Martin - 6
An Excess of Love - Cathy Cash Spellman - 6
Bossy Pants - Tina Fey - 6
Dakota Home - Debbie Macomber - 6
Every Last One - Anna Quindlen - 6
Good Omens - Neil Gaiman and Terry Prachett - 6
Half-Asses: A Weight Loss Journey - Jennette Fulds - 6
High Five - Janet Evanovich - 6
Inkdeath - Cornelia Funke - 6
Little House in Brookfield - Mraia D Wilkes - 6
Murder of a Smart Cookie - Denise Swanson - 6
Murder on a Bad Hair Day - Anne George - 6
Murder Under Cover: A Bibliophile Mystery - Kate Carlisle - 6
Shaken, Not Stirred - Tim Gunn - 6
State of Wonder - Ann Patchett - 6
Summer Island - Kristin Hannah - 6
Texas Blue - Jodi Thomas - 6
The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath - 6
The Fortunes and Misfortunes of the Famous Moll Flanders - Daniel Defoe - 6
The Last Letter - Kathleen Shoop - 6
The Queen in Winter - Claire Delacroix, Lynn Jurland, Sharon Shinn & Sarah Monette - 6
The Room - Emma Donaghue - 6
The Seventh Witch - Shirley Damsgaard - 6
The Shack - William P Young - 6
The Silver Land - Nancy Harding - 6
The Total Money Makeover - Dave Ramsey - 6
Then He Kissed Me - Christie Ridgeway - 6
Bel-Air Dead - Staurt Woods - 5.5
Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince - J. K. Rowling - 5.5
Killer Bodier - Stephanie Bond - 5.5
Smokin Seventeen - Janet Evanovich - 5.5
A Bone to Pick - Charlaine Harris - 5
Armageddon's Children - Terry Brooks - 5
Around the World in 80 Diets - - 5
Bundle of Trouble - Diana Orgain - 5
But I Love Him - Amanda Grace - 5
Caleb's Crossing - Geraldine Brooks - 5
Code of Honor - Betsy Brannon Green - 5
Dreaming of the Bones - Deborah Crombie - 5
Fantasy Lover - Sherrilyn Kenyon - 5
For the Sake of Elena - Elizabeth George - 5
Hell is Empty - Craig Johnson - 5
If I Stay - Gayle Forman - 5
Into Thin Air - Jon Krakauer - 5
Long Drive Home - Will Allison - 5
Murder Boogies with Elvis - Anne George - 5
Night Shadow - Nora Roberts - 5
Prince of Tides - Pat Conroy - 5
Room - Emma Donaghue - 5
Salem's Lot - Stephen King - 5
Seven Sorcerers - Caro King - 5
She Loves You, She Loves You Not - Julie Anne Peters - 5
Spellbound - Cara Lynn Shultz - 5
Star Island - Carl Hiaasen - 5
Stiff - Mary Roach - 5
Still Missing - Chevy Stevens - 5
Stories I only Tell my Friends: An Autobiography - Rob Lowe - 5
The Food Detective - Judith Culter - 5
The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest - Stieg Larsson - 5
The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest - Stieg Larsson - 5
The Girl Who Played with Fire - Stieg Larsson - 5
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo - Stieg Larsson - 5
The Heiress - Lynsay Sands - 5
The Hollow - Jessica Verday - 5
The Last Apprentice Series (1-7) - Joseph Delaney - 5
The Last Little Blue Envelope - Maureen Johnson - 5
The Omnivore's Dilemma - Michael Pollan - 5
The Potluck Club - Linda Evans Shepherd - 5
The Ragwitch - Garth Nix - 5
The Satyricon - Petronius - 5
The Sherlockian - Graham Moore - 5
The Snowman - Jo Nesbo - 5
The Tiger's Wife - Tea Obreht - 5
Untamed - P. C. Cast and Kristin Cast - 5
What we Keep - Elizabeth Berg - 5


Edited by: TEXASTITCHER at: 8/1/2011 (22:44)
Jo Ann
Starfish - (CST)
Be not afraid of going slowly; be afraid only of standing still. - Chinese Proverb



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TEXASTITCHER's Photo TEXASTITCHER Posts: 59,152
8/1/11 10:33 P

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The following books were read by multiple individuals

3 - Smokin Seventeen - Janet Evanovich
2 - Between Friends - Debbie Macomber
2 - Little Bee - Chris Cleave
2 - Room - Emma Donaghue
2 - The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest - Stieg Larsson
2 - The Wednesday Letters - Jason F Wright


Edited by: TEXASTITCHER at: 8/1/2011 (22:43)
Jo Ann
Starfish - (CST)
Be not afraid of going slowly; be afraid only of standing still. - Chinese Proverb



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TEXASTITCHER's Photo TEXASTITCHER Posts: 59,152
8/1/11 10:33 P

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The following authors had three or more books reported on.

7 - Debbie Macomber
7 - Joseph Delaney
7 - Linda Wisdom
4 - Janet Evanovich
4 - Kim Lawrence
4 - Maria E Schneider
4 - Nadia Gordon
4 - Stieg Larsson
3 - Kay Hopper
3 - Lucy Monroe

We also had 20 authors who had two books read.

Edited by: TEXASTITCHER at: 8/1/2011 (22:43)
Jo Ann
Starfish - (CST)
Be not afraid of going slowly; be afraid only of standing still. - Chinese Proverb



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TEXASTITCHER's Photo TEXASTITCHER Posts: 59,152
8/1/11 10:31 P

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We had 79 individuals report on books that they read this month. The top readers (with the number of books that they read are:

31 - DESERTDREAMERS
31 - TEXASTITCHER
24 - SACTOKAREN
12 - LUECL3
11 - MOMMA_SHY
10 - REALITYSHOWGIRL


Edited by: TEXASTITCHER at: 8/1/2011 (22:43)
Jo Ann
Starfish - (CST)
Be not afraid of going slowly; be afraid only of standing still. - Chinese Proverb



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JESSICAW30's Photo JESSICAW30 SparkPoints: (0)
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8/1/11 10:21 A

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Dark Angels by Karleen Koen 4 stars

Set in England and France after Charles II begins his reign. Focuses on the maids of honor and ladies in waiting and all the gossip, trouble and scheming that occurs behind the scenes.

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8/1/11 8:30 A

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The Total Money Makeover By Dave Ramsey 6 stars

A common sense approach to living debt free. His baby steps make it very easy to understand and follow. I listen to his radio show sometimes too. He is very upbeat and encouraging.

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DESERTDREAMERS's Photo DESERTDREAMERS Posts: 48,955
7/31/11 10:55 P

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31) For Sale: Old Manor House (free ghosts included) by Merabeth James 3 stars

Caitlan and her team of psychic investigators are hired to debunk the stories the old Cornish manor is haunted. Unfortunately for Trane, the Lord of the manor, it was very haunted. Soon, Trane found himself haunted by green-eyed Caitlyn. (romance story)

SparkAlbuquerque-The Oficial Team Leader

SparkNewMexico - The Official Team Leader

Small Dogs, Big Hearts Team Leader



Wars of nations are fought to change maps. But wars of poverty are fought to map change.
Muhammad Ali

�When tempted to fight fire with fire, remember that the fire department generally uses water."


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DRAGONLADY712's Photo DRAGONLADY712 Posts: 1,044
7/31/11 7:18 P

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The Queen in Winter four novellas by Claire Delacroix, Lynn Kurland, Sharon Shinn, & Sarah Monette 6 stars fantasy

The Rule of Four by Ian Caldwell and Dustin Thomason 4 stars

The Silver Land by Nancy Harding 6 stars fantasy

emoticon

Ann


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DRAGONLADY712's Photo DRAGONLADY712 Posts: 1,044
7/31/11 7:18 P

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Inkdeath by Cornelia Funke 6 stars fantasy

The Mystery of Drear House by Virginia Hamilton 4.5 stars YA

The Shack by William P. Young 6 stars

emoticon

Ann


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DESERTDREAMERS's Photo DESERTDREAMERS Posts: 48,955
7/31/11 6:37 P

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28) Blood Dreams by Kay Hooper 3 stars

This is one of the Bishop/Special Crimes Unit books, the start of the "Blood" trilogy. Lots of introduction, not as good as some of the others.


29) Angelic by Kelley Armstrong 2.5 stars

One of her Women of the Underworld series, this novella brings back Eve Levine, ex-dark witch, now celestial bounty hunter for the Fates. Seemed kind of scattered to me.


30) Gimme Back My Clothes by Anna Hales Owen 3.5 stars

Cute romance with quirky characters on a small island in Maine. Hunky fireman Jaro is sent there for Witness Protection, disguised in a Superman/Clark Kent style as a dorky nerd (thick glasses, fake goatee, pocket protector and flannel shirt). The young mayor, Roslyn, feels cursed by love, and thinks the nerd is safe. A totally silly fun read.



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Small Dogs, Big Hearts Team Leader



Wars of nations are fought to change maps. But wars of poverty are fought to map change.
Muhammad Ali

�When tempted to fight fire with fire, remember that the fire department generally uses water."


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7/31/11 5:13 P

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I like Janet Evanovich and I have read her newest but I am burned out. Her books seems all the same now. She needs to make a change. Do you feel that way?

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7/31/11 3:24 P

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What Alice Forgot- Liane Moriarty -4.5 stars
A great read. Lots of fun & thought provoking.

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7/31/11 3:14 P

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Smokin' Seventeen- Janet Evanovich out of a 10 I would give this book a 7

It was very funny and I had it finished within 7 hours of buying it. There are 17 of them though and that isn't including the several in between novels so it wasn't my most favorite. I heard great news though, this series of books will soon be in movie form. I can't wait!!!! I can't wait to see some of the characters come to life. I hope they bring the book to justice:)

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FRABBIT's Photo FRABBIT Posts: 6,565
7/31/11 12:31 P

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Left Neglected - Lisa Genova - 4 stars

Though I finished it in one day I did not find it as good as her first book Still Alice. It is about a woman who has the real condition Left Neglected. Sadly I did not feel that she gave much insight into the main character and came away a bit disappointed. An easy read but not enough depth.

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CD9543726 Posts: 6,824
7/31/11 7:55 A

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Finished In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan yesterday. It was really good, but a lot of it reiterated what he said in The Omnivore's Dilemma so I didn't get quite as much out of it. 4 stars.

ANOTHERTAG's Photo ANOTHERTAG Posts: 450
7/30/11 10:08 P

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8. "Finding It" by Valerie Bertinelli

3stars out of 6 stars

Maintenance. After Valerie loses 40 pounds she wants to keep it off. This is her struggle to keep the weight off. Its has some valid points but the thing I keep coming back to is that she gets her hair done "every 12 days". I am not sure why this bothers me since I have my roots done too, usually every 10 weeks. Glad I read the book though.

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7/30/11 6:03 P

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What We Keep-Elizabeth Berg-*****5 stars
The ending was a surprise and it was the type of surprising I don't necessarily buy. The characters are wonderfully developed and the story is as rich as I expect from Berg.

Quit stuffing your face and face your stuff.

Author Unknown


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KLAD_COCKERS's Photo KLAD_COCKERS SparkPoints: (0)
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7/30/11 3:56 P

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Between Friends - by Debbie Macomber - 3.5*

Jillian Lawton and Lesley Adamski. Two girls from very different backgrounds. Jillian is the only child of wealthy parents, while Lesley's from a working class family. They become best friends in the turbulent 60's, but their circumstances, their choices - and their mistakes - take them in virtually opposite directions. Lesley stays in their Washington State hometown. She gets pregnant and marries young, living a life defined by the demands of small children, not enough money - never enough money - and an unfaithful husband. Jill lives those years in a completely different way: on a college campus shaken by the Vietnam War, and then as an idealistic lawyer in New York City. But they always remain friends.



Kelly & the KLAD Cockers
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NEELIXNKES's Photo NEELIXNKES Posts: 7,992
7/30/11 12:31 P

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Eat the Dark by Joe Schrieber 3.5 *'s
From Goodreads.com
"On the last night before Tanglewood Memorial closes for good, a special patient arrives: the infamous serial killer Frank Snow has been brought in for a brain MRI. Then Snow unexpectedly breaks free, cuts the power, and locks the doors. Now he's loose in the old, dark hospital, hunting its last occupants one by one, and escape seems to be the furthest thing from his mind."



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NEELIXNKES's Photo NEELIXNKES Posts: 7,992
7/30/11 12:29 P

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I know I am but what are you by Samantha Bee 4*'s

from Goodreads.com
"With charming candor, she admits to her Lennie from Of Mice and Menstyle love of baby animals, her teenage crime spree as one-half of a car-thieving couple (Bonnie and Clyde in Bermuda shorts and braces), and the fact that strangers seem compelled to show her their genitals. She also details her intriguing career history, which includes stints working in a frame store, at a penis clinic, and as a Japanese anime character in a touring childrens show.

Samantha delves into all these topics and many more in this thoroughly hilarious, unabashedly frank collection of personal essays. Whether detailing the creepiness that ensues when strangers assume that your mom is your lesbian lover, or recalling her girlhood crush on Jesus (who looked like Kris Kristofferson and sang like Kenny Loggins), Samantha turns the spotlight on her own imperfect yet highly entertaining life as relentlessly as she skewers hapless interview subjects on The Daily Show. She shares her unique point of view on a variety of subjects as wide ranging as her deep affinity for old people, to her hatred of hot ham."



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CARPROTH's Photo CARPROTH Posts: 19,335
7/30/11 10:58 A

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Stiff by Mary Roach *****

Non-fiction account by a noted science writer. It is a" fascinating, often hillarious exploration of the strange lives of our bodies postmorten. For two thousand years, cadavers - some willingly, some unwillingly - have been involved in science's boldest strides and weirdest undertakings. Mary Roach visits the good deeds of cadavers over the centuries and tells the engrossing story of our bodies when we are no longer with them." I found it especially compelling since I am one of those people who have left my body to my state's med school for use in teaching future doctors anatomy. After spending most of my adult life as a teacher, I figured it would be the last shot I would have at helping anyone learn something. Nice to know what I'm in for.

Carol


Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss you will land amongst the stars.


Nothing changes when nothing changes.



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The Heiress - Lynsay Sands
- Funny, several chapters that make me blush (haha), hardly to put away till the end, 5 stars!

### Fathin SN###
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7/30/11 5:36 A

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Crunch Time by Diane Mott Davidson 3***

This was just OK. I usually like these stories with the recipes but this one had way too many characters that were barely related and in very unbelievable ways. Too confusing but the recipes look good!

- Judy

"There is plenty of work for love to do."


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DESERTDREAMERS's Photo DESERTDREAMERS Posts: 48,955
7/29/11 10:58 P

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26) South of Salem by Janni Nell 3 stars

Allegra is a paranormal investigator (don't call her a ghostbuster!) - but her family has always been ashamed of her abilities - until they need them.


27) Rescue Me by Sydney Allen 2.5 stars

Hailey Jensen runs an animal rescue in California - she's estranged from her family, including her identical twin, Heidi. Just when Hailey thinks things can't get better, life slaps her in the head. Her twin has cancer, the hunky doctor taking care of Heidi wants Hailey to be a bone marrow donor, and plans and monies fall thru for her rescue organization. Now, the rescuer needs rescuing.


28) Blood Dreams (Bishop/SCU series) by Kay Hooper 4.5 stars

FBI Special Crimes Unit members are being stalked in a small town. A serial killer is using horrendous murders to get the team there. The "special" in SCU is the varying psychic abilities the team members have. If you hate reading about gross murders, this is not for you.



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Wars of nations are fought to change maps. But wars of poverty are fought to map change.
Muhammad Ali

�When tempted to fight fire with fire, remember that the fire department generally uses water."


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CRYSTALCONERLY's Photo CRYSTALCONERLY Posts: 73
7/29/11 10:42 P

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Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott ****

Book about writing. I enjoyed it. If you are a writer you should read it, it might be what you need to get past anything you are facing right now.

Every step is one step closer.
Goal #1 305 (done 7/15/12)
Goal #2 299 (done 7/16/12)
Goal #3 289 Pre Preg Wt 11/2/12
Goal #4 280 1/4 way there 11/30/12
Goal #5 272 Wedding Wt 12/21/2012 (Anniversary)
Goal #6 270 No Longer Morbidly Obese 12/31/2012
Goal #7 268 What I weighed when I met my DH 1/7/2013
Goal #8 258 College Graduation Wt 2/11/2013
Goal #9 249 Under 250 lbs 3/11/2013
Goal #10 240 Half Way There 4/15/2013
Goal #11 236 HS


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CD2699608 Posts: 5,422
7/29/11 8:08 P

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Faefever: The Fever Series by Karen Marie Moning

4 stars

The third installment in Moning's Fever series about sidhe-seer MacKayla Lane.


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7/29/11 5:43 P

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JESUS.SAVED.ME, just wondered which books and reviewers you are referring too?


My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, I am now in hospice care for metastatic breast cancer, but I'm not letting cancer stop me from Sparking!

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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TEXASTITCHER's Photo TEXASTITCHER Posts: 59,152
7/28/11 9:30 P

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The Italians Wedding Ultimatum Kim Lawrence - 3.5*
The Italians Secret Baby Kim Lawrence - 3.5*
The Blind Date Bride Emma Dracy - 3.5*
In Cristofides Keeping Abby Green - 3.5*
Bride in a Gilded Cage Abby Green - 3.5*
The Proud Wife Kate Walker - 3.5*
The Italians Bought Bride Kate Hewitt - 3.5*
Mistress at the Italians Command Melanie Milburne - 3.5*
Italian Boss, Housekeeper Mistress Kate Hewitt - 3*
Ordinary Girl in a Tiara Jessica Hart - 3.5 *


Jo Ann
Starfish - (CST)
Be not afraid of going slowly; be afraid only of standing still. - Chinese Proverb



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ANOTHERTAG's Photo ANOTHERTAG Posts: 450
7/28/11 7:14 P

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7. "Promise Not To Tell" by Jennier McMahon

4stars out of 6stars ****

This is a murder mystery...actually 2 murder mysteries, the first one taking place 30 years earlier in the same area. Victims are young girls in rual Vermont. There is an element of a ghost story too which I was not that crazy about. We also see the effects of Alzheimers taking place which is sad. However I did enjoy the story and relationships portrayed.

On a side note: I do not recall any character saying "I killed someone tonight". This statement is on the cover of the book along with a picture of a ten year girl. I am not too sure how to take that.

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7/28/11 6:14 P

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Hmm, if people are going to give away endings and plot surprises, I won't be reading those books. Maybe we can keep details to ourselves?

Crystal from Vancouver, B.C.

"You're on the line between breaking point and breaking through"


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7/28/11 3:43 P

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4*
Gap Creek: The Story of a Marriage by Robert Morgan

This novel is about a young, newly married couple living in South Carolina, in the Appalachians, near the turn of the century after the Civil War. Julie is only 17, and Frank 18, and are very poor. Nothing comes easy for them, and they deal with death, fire, floods, swindlers, sickness, and near starvation.

The characters are memorable, and though they are long-suffering, the author does not make them into saints either. It was a very realistic portrait of what it was like to live in that time and that place, and I probably learned more about hog butchering than I ever wanted or needed to know. They lived a simple life, but it was a hard one.

What I found most disturbing was the death of Julie's baby brother at the beginning of the story; you may want to skip those few paragraphs if you have a weak stomach, it was one of the grossest deaths I have ever read about.

I thought the story was well written, but I didn't like the ending; I felt it was too abrupt; I think it should have been a chapter longer. I also would like to see a sequel, to find out what happened later in life to Julie and Frank. I think this book would make a great movie too.


Edited by: MOM2ACAT at: 7/29/2011 (17:39)

My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, I am now in hospice care for metastatic breast cancer, but I'm not letting cancer stop me from Sparking!

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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7/28/11 11:29 A

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Tales of a Female Nomad by Rita Golden Gelman**** 4 stars

Fifteen years ago, the middle-aged Gelman left behind an upscale California lifestyle and fading marriage to begin an odyssey that continues to this day. Using a well-paced and fluid writing style, Gelman describes how she observed orangutans in the rain forests of Borneo, canoed in Indonesia, ate psychedelic mushrooms in Mexico, and skirted landmines in Nicaragua. Wherever she travels, it is the people and their customs that intrigue her most, from the restrictive but culturally rich celebrations of a Hasidic family in Israel to the more relaxed but equally ritualized daily life of her new friends in Bali. Her enthusiasm for the people she meets and her ability to overcome the challenges faced by a woman traveling alone make for an engrossing and inspirational read.



50 is the new 30.


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AMANDAWOLF's Photo AMANDAWOLF Posts: 1
7/28/11 10:03 A

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Can't wait to read it! Thanks for the recommendation.

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7/27/11 5:14 P

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3 by Maria E. Schneider - her Sedona O'Hala Mystery series-

Thanks for the suggestion(s)- sounds like a series I'd enjoy.

Edited by: MIDDLTEACH at: 7/27/2011 (17:19)
Lord, make my words sweet and tender- for tomorrow I may have to eat them!


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7/27/11 11:33 A

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If You Were Here by Jen Lancaster **** 4 stars

Follows Amish-zombie-teen-romance author Mia and her husband Mac (and their pets) through the alternately frustrating, exciting, terrifying-but always funny-process of buying and renovating their first home in the Chicago suburbs that John Hughes's movies made famous. Along their harrowing renovation journey, Mia and Mac get caught up in various wars with the homeowners' association, meet some less-than-friendly neighbors, and are joined by a hilarious cast of supporting characters, including a celebutard ex- landlady. As they struggle to adapt to their new surroundings- with Mac taking on the renovations himself- Mia and Mac will discover if their marriage is strong enough to survive months of DIY renovations.


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7/27/11 11:33 A

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The Love of My Youth by Mary Gordon **** 4 stars

Miranda and Adam began a love affair in high school that endured through college only to end in a painful betrayal. When a mutual friend brings them together in present-day Rome, they haven't seen each other in more than three decades. Adam's ambitions to be a concert pianist never came to pass, and Miranda, once convinced that political activism could change the world, is now an epidemiologist. Both have married and raised children, but Rome still holds passionate memories for them. Though wary, they meet for daily walks, and Gordon's vividly detailed descriptions make Rome a palpable presence. Miranda and Adam tentatively reveal to each other the events of their lives, touching on aspirations, disillusionments, ideals, and desires, and these conversations set the pace of Gordon's novel. Only when Miranda is about to leave Rome are they able to fully express their emotions and achieve catharsis.


50 is the new 30.


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7/27/11 8:58 A

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24) No Rest for the Wicca by Toni LoTempio 3 stars

Half-Wiccan/ half-Voodoo witch Morgan Hawkes is a Paranomal Investigator. She's still carrying the guilt that her partner died in a takedown a year before. Now, she's working with a vampire - not one of her favorite types of creatures. But, oh, the attraction!


25) Under the Witch Moon by Maria E. Schneider 4 stars

(I may have upped the rating a tad because it's set in New Mexico) Adriel is a good witch - trying to work as an informant to the cops about paranormal events - without getting labelled as a looney by the non-believers. She's run into a wicked witch that has no scruples, and it's going to take everything she has, plus the help of undercover cop White Feather, to survive thisone.

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Finished reading The Weed That Strings the Hangman's Bag by Alan Bradley, the second mystery in the Flavia de Luce series. It was no where near as good as the first one, felt more like a copy of it. I'm hoping the third is better... 2 stars.

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7/27/11 7:44 A

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3 stars-Solid read in its genre. Take it on plane.

The Alchemyst: The Secrets of the Immortal Nicolas Flamel by Michael Scott

First book in a 'juvenile' fantasy series of six books (like HP is 'juvenile'). Not completely in love with it, but on the other hand I can't put my finger on what I might not like about it - apart from 3 times in the beginning where the author repeats himself on 3 different occations. "Yes, I know - you told me that 5-6 pages back!"-kind of frustration.

Ends of a cliffhanger - obvious you are supposed to read the next 5 books, too.

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7/26/11 10:27 P

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Every Last One-Anna Quindlen-******6 stars
Unlike Jodi Picoult, Anna Quindlen put the shocker in the middle and continues to develop the real feel of coping.


Quit stuffing your face and face your stuff.

Author Unknown


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7/26/11 6:41 P

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4* A Stolen Life, by Jaycee Dugard. EXTREMELY graphic, but she tempers the info she shares with positives about her free life and reunion with her family and friends and her devotion to her daughters. Incredible woman!

Crystal from Vancouver, B.C.

"You're on the line between breaking point and breaking through"


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3*
The Outsider by Ann Gabhart

This story is set in a Shaker community in Kentucky in 1812. Gabrielle and her mother have lived with the Shakers since 1807, when Gabrielle was around 13 years old. For as long as she has remembered, Gabrielle has had the gift of knowing; being able to see visions of events yet to come. When one of these visions comes to pass, a local doctor is brought in to save the life of a young man, setting into motion a chain of events which causes Gabrielle to question her faith, and she must make a choice, to stay in her community, which up until now she always felt accepted by and sense of peace and belonging, or the forbidden love of a man from "the world".

This was a very interesting look at life back in that time, especially that within the religion of the Shakers. The author did a good job not only of showing the fanatical side of the religion, but also the good parts which made me understand what drew people to it. I can also understand that because of the strictness of the rules, especially since they did not believe in marriage or families in the traditional sense, that the religion gradually died out; they lived instead as brothers and sisters. Even families that came to live within the community were separated; men from women, and mothers from their children.

I won't give away the ending and tell you what Gabrielle chose in the end, but her struggle with her faith was very believable and real.


Edited by: MOM2ACAT at: 7/26/2011 (16:36)

My name is Shari; I have been a Sparker since July 2006, I am now in hospice care for metastatic breast cancer, but I'm not letting cancer stop me from Sparking!

Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

A. A. Milne



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7/26/11 12:27 A

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3 by Maria E. Schneider - her Sedona O'Hala Mystery series - 3.5 stars each

21) Executive Lunch

22) Executive Retention

23) Executive Sick Days

Sedona is a computer geek - and good at what she does. She meets Huntington (in a semi-fake assault at her workplace) ... he turns out to be an undercover investigator trying to solve corporate fraud. Steve ropes Sedona into working for him - she meets his almost identical brother (not twin) Mark. Each book develops the relationships between Sedona and the brothers, and her wacky family members. Cute series - can't wait for the next one1

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7/25/11 6:18 P

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Spellbound by Cara Lynn Shultz- 5 stars

Life hasn't been easy on sixteen-year-old Emma Connor, so a new start in New York may be just the change she needs. But the posh Upper East Side prep school she has to attend? Not so much. Friendly faces are few and far between, except for one that she's irresistibly drawn toBrendan Salinger, the guy with the rock-star good looks and the richest kid in school, who might just be her very own white knight.

But even when Brendan inexplicably turns cold, Emma can't stop staring. Ever since she laid eyes on him, strange things have been happening. Streetlamps go out wherever she walks, and Emma's been having the oddest dreams: visions of herself in past livesvisions that warn her to stay away from Brendan. Or else.

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7/25/11 1:09 P

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How Bad Are Bananas? By Mike Berners-Lee **** 4 stars

Climate change is upon us whether we like it or not. Managing our carbon usage has become a part of everyday life and we have no choice but to live in a carbon-careful world. The seriousness of the challenge is getting stronger, demanding that we have a proper understanding of the carbon implications of our everyday lifestyle decisions.
Part green-lifestyle guide, part popular science, How Bad Are Bananas? is the first book to provide the information we need to make carbon-savvy purchases and informed lifestyle choices, and to build carbon considerations into our everyday thinking. It also helps put our decisions into perspective with entries for the big things (the World Cup, volcanic eruptions, and the Iraq war) as well as the small (email, ironing a shirt, a glass of beer). And it covers the range from birth (the carbon footprint of having a child) to death (the carbon impact of cremation). Packed full of surprises-a plastic bag has the smallest footprint of any item listed, while a block of cheese is bad news-the book continuously informs, delights, and engages the reader.



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7/25/11 9:52 A

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How to Knit a Love Song by Rachel Herron - 3 stars

Abigail is more than ready for a change when she inherits a cottage from her beloved mentor, knitting guru Eliza Carpenter. Leaving the oppressive city for the greener pastures of a small California beach town, she intends to turn her cozy little windfall into a knitting shop and spend her days spinning, designing, and purling. But she's not going to be welcomed with open arms by her new neighbor. Eliza's disgruntled nephew, the gorgeous Cade, now owns everything surrounding Abigail's ramshackle new home, and he views this sexy city girl as an unwanted interloper.

But chemistry working overtime is drawing two very different people closer than they ever thought possible. And when the past that Abigail thought she'd left behind comes calling, she'll have to somehow learn to trust her handsome adversary with much more than just her heart.



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7/25/11 9:26 A

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The Homecoming-Dan Walsh-***3 stars
I did like the treatment of the WW11 years in this book. Unfortunately, the Christian element was a bit too thick and all the characters were too perfect. Too predictable; but there was something there that compelled me to finish it.

Quit stuffing your face and face your stuff.

Author Unknown


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7/24/11 9:35 P

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Just a quick review of the books I have read this month.
Bossy Pants by Tina Fey 5/5 - Like her humor which comes across in the book very nicely. Good read if you are a fan or just want to see how she got where she is today.

Half-Assed: A Weight Loss Journey by Jennette Fulds 5/5 Really engaging story taking you through her losing half her body weight. Educational and inspiring.

The Half Life by Jennifier Weiner 2/5 It might be me but it was like she took plots and characters from previous books and throw them together to make a short story. I really enjoyed previous books by her but The Half Life seemed like a half effort.

Shaken, Not Stirred by Tim Gunn 5/5 (Kindle Short) Tim Gunn from Project Runway takes a break from fashion to tell the story of his father, Bill Gunn. Bill was an FBI agent working for J. Edgar Hoover. A successful man who would later suffer mental illness. Tims account of his somewhat difficult man is told in a very insightful and loving way. Quick read and a good story.

Oxford Girl by Plum Sykes 1/5 (Kindle Short) True story about Plum getting into and her first years at Oxford. Believe she is now an editor or something but just thought she was spoiled and ungrateful as a young girl who as an adult thinks it was cute and fun. If I hadnt loaded this on my Kindle I would have thrown the book across the room.

Showstopper by Abigail Pogrebin 3/5 The story behind the failed play, Merrily We Roll Along, by Steven Sondheim. Think this would appeal to someone who was more into the back stories of Broadway. It was a good quick read but not something I would recommend.


Maggie -I am in the central time zone.


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CD5770485 Posts: 3,008
7/24/11 7:51 P

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I agree...GREAT book. It is somewhat similar to the true story of Jaycee Dugard.

(The Room) Emma Donoghue 5/5 stars!

Edited by: CD5770485 at: 7/24/2011 (19:52)
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7/24/11 4:05 P

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The Six Rules of Maybe by Deb Caletti- 4 stars

Scarlet spends most of her time worrying about other people. Some are her friends, others are practically strangers, and then there are the ones no else even notices. Trying to fix their lives comes naturally to her. And pushing her own needs to the side is part of the deal. So when her older sister comes home unexpectedly married and pregnant, Scarlet has a new person to worry about. But all of her good intentions are shattered when the unthinkable happens: she falls for her sisters husband. For the first time in a long time, Scarlets not fixing a problem, shes at the center of one. And ignoring her feelings doesnt seem to be an option...

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7/24/11 4:03 P

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I just read a really good book called Doc. It is about Doc Holiday,Bat Masterson, Wyatt Eary and borthers. Very good!!!

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7/24/11 4:03 P

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I just joined Spark People today. I read a lot and also cross-stitch. So far this month I have read five books - two Stargate ones, two Christian suspense fiction and a romance book that Harlequin sent me to read and comment. Not a book I would have chosen myself. Currently I am reading an older book that I found in my pile - Twanged by Carol Higgins Clark. It is quite dated since I have read all of her newer books.

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7/24/11 3:48 P

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I was on vacation last week, so was able to get through some books:

Up Close and Personal by Fern Michaels - 3 stars

This is one of those books where the dialogue is frothy and supposed to be fun, but ends up being more irritating than anything else. It was an ok read, but not something I would want to read again.

Teaming Up by Abby Gaines - 3 stars
Hot Pursuit by Wendy Etherington

More NASCAR romances. I actually like these better than the Fern Michaels book. At least the author tries to build personalities and real conversations. However, nothing deep about these, either.

Going to read my first Faye Kellerman book next. I love and have read every fiction book by her husband, so I am hoping she doesn't disappoint!

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7/23/11 10:08 P

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Rogue by Rachel Vincent
3/6 Stars

This is the second book in Vincent's Shifters series, which I would call fantasy, but I think it might now be referred to as paranormal romance. I just discovered the series this week. So far, both of them have been quick, easy reads in the 300-page range, and very fun. They are definitely suitable for plane/beach/summer boredom reading.

Fallen by Karin Slaughter
3/6 Stars

Fallen is a crime mystery/thriller type book with some recurring characters from other Karin Slaughter books. I am very picky about the crime novels I read, and I really enjoyed this one. No knowledge of the other books with the same characters was necessary, which is nice because I haven't read any other Karin Slaughter books before.

A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin
6/6 Stars

ADwD is the 5th book in a fantasy series that started with the book A Game of Thrones (now a critically-acclaimed HBO series). Martin is one of my favorite authors of all time. The twists and turns in this book keep you guessing. However I do have several disclaimers. The whole series is not for the faint of heart. It is bloody and gruesome, and sometimes profane, and those with a strict and unalterable view of morals and justice may want to avoid it. This series is not something you should read with your children. In fact, I password protected my Nook around my young cousins while I was reading this book. If you're alright with all of that, and you're a fan of fantasy, George R.R. Martin books are a must-read.

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7/23/11 10:08 P

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Rogue by Rachel Vincent
3/6 Stars

This is the second book in Vincent's Shifters series, which I would call fantasy, but I think it might now be referred to as paranormal romance. I just discovered the series this week. So far, both of them have been quick, easy reads in the 300-page range, and very fun. They are definitely suitable for plane/beach/summer boredom reading.

Fallen by Karin Slaughter
3/6 Stars

Fallen is a crime mystery/thriller type book with some recurring characters from other Karin Slaughter books. I am very picky about the crime novels I read, and I really enjoyed this one. No knowledge of the other books with the same characters was necessary, which is nice because I haven't read any other Karin Slaughter books before.

A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin
6/6 Stars

ADwD is the 5th book in a fantasy series that started with the book A Game of Thrones (now a critically-acclaimed HBO series). Martin is one of my favorite authors of all time. The twists and turns in this book keep you guessing. However I do have several disclaimers. The whole series is not for the faint of heart. It is bloody and gruesome, and sometimes profane, and those with a strict and unalterable view of morals and justice may want to avoid it. This series is not something you should read with your children. In fact, I password protected my Nook around my young cousins while I was reading this book. If you're alright with all of that, and you're a fan of fantasy, George R.R. Martin books are a must-read.

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7/23/11 10:02 P

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Rogue by Rachel Vincent
3/6 Stars

This is the second book in Vincent's Shifters series, which I would call fantasy, but I think it might now be referred to as paranormal romance. I just discovered the series this week. So far, both of them have been quick, easy reads in the 300-page range, and very fun. They are definitely suitable for plane/beach/summer boredom reading.

Fallen by Karin Slaughter
3/6 Stars

Fallen is a crime mystery/thriller type book with some recurring characters from other Karin Slaughter books. I am very picky about the crime novels I read, and I really enjoyed this one. No knowledge of the other books with the same characters was necessary, which is nice because I haven't read any other Karin Slaughter books before.

A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin
6/6 Stars

ADwD is the 5th book in a fantasy series that started with the book A Game of Thrones (now a critically-acclaimed HBO series). Martin is one of my favorite authors of all time. The twists and turns in this book keep you guessing. However I do have several disclaimers. The whole series is not for the faint of heart. It is bloody and gruesome, and sometimes profane, and those with a strict and unalterable view of morals and justice may want to avoid it. This series is not something you should read with your children. In fact, I password protected my Nook around my young cousins while I was reading this book. If you're alright with all of that, and you're a fan of fantasy, George R.R. Martin books are a must-read.

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7/23/11 11:51 A

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Ranger's Apprentice Book 5: The Socerer of the North by John Flanagan 3 stars

There is no elevator to success. You have to take the stairs.
--- Author Unknown

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7/23/11 1:32 A

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The Hollow by Jessica Verday- 5 stars

When Abbey's best friend, Kristen, vanishes at the bridge near Sleepy Hollow Cemetery, everyone else is all too quick to accept that Kristen is dead?and rumors fly that her death was no accident. Abbey goes through the motions of mourning her best friend, but privately, she refuses to believe that Kristen is really gone. Then she meets Caspian, the gorgeous and mysterious boy who shows up out of nowhere at Kristen's funeral, and keeps reappearing in Abbey's life. Caspian clearly has secrets of his own, but he's the only person who makes Abbey feel normal again...but also special.

Just when Abbey starts to feel that she might survive all this, she learns a secret that makes her question everything she thought she knew about her best friend. How could Kristen have kept silent about so much? And could this secret have led to her death? As Abbey struggles to understand Kristen's betrayal, she uncovers a frightening truth that nearly unravels her one that will challenge her emerging love for Caspian, as well as her own sanity.

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7/23/11 12:28 A

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Bel-Air Dead
Staurt Woods
9/10
289 pages

Michelle


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7/22/11 5:09 P

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Travelers Tales: Mexico by James OReilly and Larry Habegger **** 4 stars

A new kind of travel anthology, marrying the best of the guidebook and travel literature. The book is organized into five sections: "Essence of Mexico" contains stories that reflect some essential character of the landscape, the people, or the traveler's experience of the country. "Some Things to Do" has accounts of particular places and activities previous travelers found worthwhile. "Going Your Own Way" contains experiences farther off the tourist track, relayed by an author who interacted more intimately with local people. "In the Shadows" explores the darker side of Mexico, so that visitors might be aware of the complexities beyond the cheerful face presented to tourists. "The Last Word" has one last magical moment, to remind the reader just why Mexico is worth visiting. There is perhaps no better way to prepare for a trip, or to vicariously experience another country and its culture, than to listen to those who have gone before.


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7/22/11 12:00 P

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But I Love Him by Amanda Grace- 5 Stars

At the beginning of senior year, Ann was a smiling, straight-A student and track star with friends and a future. Then she met a haunted young man named Connor. Only she can heal his emotional scars; only he could make her feel so loved and needed. Ann can't recall the pivotal moment it all changed, when she surrendered everything to be with him, but by graduation, her life has become a dangerous high wire act. Just one mistake could trigger Connor's rage, a senseless storm of cruel words and violence damaging everything and everyone in its path.

This evocative slideshow of flashbacks reveals a heartbreaking story of love gone terribly wrong.

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7/22/11 11:25 A

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2 by Rose Pressey - paranormal romances 3.5 stars each

19) Rock 'n' Roll is Undead (Veronica Mason Book 1)

Veronica is the singer in a rockabilly band, but someone is killing vampires in the local bands. Meet Buzz, a hunka-hunka burning love bass guitarist - but can she trust him?


20) How to Date a Werewolf (Rylie Cruz Series)

Rylie is a werewolf, and her busines is Get a Mate - a dating service. She seems to be able to match up everyone but herself. Each chapter has a subtitle of a rule for dating werewolves - cute thought.

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