Friday, June 24, 2011

A Trip Down the Rabbit Hole! Books and hats and holidays!

Hello Readers,

It’s HOLIDAY TIME!! Yippee! I am officially on holiday until June 15th, although I will blog while off!

Being on holiday gives me ample time to catch-up on my ever-growing to be read pile. Several books have caught me eye that I simply cannot wait to read.

Fitzwilliam Darcy, Rock Star by Heather Lynn Rigaud (September, 2011)

At the moment I am wavering between “will I like it?’ and “will I not like it?”. I keep picking up the arc and then placing it back on my shelf not quite sure what to expect, but I do have to say this book looks as though it will hold my interest. Before my holiday is over, I will read this book!

Catriona by Jeanette Baker

Having fallen in love with Legacy, I cannot wait to start this book. I love how she intertwines the past and the present.

Whispers in the Sand by Barbara Erskine

This will be my first time reading a novel by Barbara Erskine, and after hearing the amazing buzz about her books I am thrilled to have it in my tbr pile. In fact I just may have to move it to the top of the pile!

Sylvester or the Wicked Uncle by Georgette Heyer

I cannot wait to curl up with this book. The blurb on the back caught my eye:

Rank, wealth, and elegance are no match for a young lady who writes novels…
Sylvester, Duke of Salford, has exacting requirements for a bride. Then he encounters Phoebe Marlow, a young lady with literary aspirations, and suddenly life becomes very complicated. She meets none of his criteria, and even worse, she has written a novel that is sweeping the ton and causing all kinds of gossip…and he’s the main character!

Doesn’t it sound brilliant!

How to Seduce a Scoundrel by Vicky Dreiling

I simply have to read this after reading How to Marry a Duke. Stay tuned because I will be hosting a giveaway for How to Seduce a Scoundrel.

Black Ties and Lullabies by Jane Graves

I received an arc of this yesterday and desperately want to devour it!

The Vampire Next Door by Ashlyn Chase

This will be my first time reading Ashlyn Chase and I am eager to do so.

The Greatest Love on Earth by Mary Ellen Dennis

The cover alone peaked my curiosity, now I have to see what it’s all about!

That’s my short list of what I am itching to read. I am currently reading

Pillow Talk by Freya North, and I have to say I am rather enjoying. As a fan of Brit-Chick lit, this book is right up my alley. Sourcebooks is releasing this title in July, so make sure you add it to your tbr list.

When I am not working, reading, or writing you can find me covered in paint- well my hands at least. In my spare time I am bit of an artist, although sadly I hardly have the time to break out the paints anymore. Hopefully while on holiday I will be able to finish the canvas I started a few weeks ago.

However I did mange to finish a sketch from a few months back

and I finally found a frame for it.

As of late I have become a bit of a hatter and I can definitely see why some of them went mad. The work that goes into making a single hat is exceeding tedious, so that is why I have only completed two.

A tea hat

A historic pillbox type complete with a peacock feather

I have a few other designs in mind, a regency type bonnet, and a renaissance inspire attifet that was made famous by Mary, Queen of Scots. I will let you know how they turn out!

Until next time,
Best Wishes & Happy Reading,

Saturday, June 11, 2011


Hello All!

WOW! These last few weeks have been pure madness! Starting at the end of May it has been a nonstop cycle of running here and there, although I did manage a few shopping trips along the way :-} Who can resist a chance encounter with a bookshop? Or finding a cute little boutique and snagging that to-die-for dress?

Besides the browsing and buying, that went on, I also checked out The Feast of the Flowering moon, a Native America-inspired festival that was held in Chillicothe, Ohio’s first capital. I have to say that the festival failed to impress, sad to say I had more interest in the family of swans that were moseying about than the actual festival.
(I am surprised she allowed me close enough to snap these pictures)

(I cannot leave out these cute little ducks that were swimming about)

I will say Ohio’s First Capital does have some rather interesting historical sites to offer. Sadly, I only had time to check out Adena.

Adena Mansion, completed in 1806-1807, was the 2,000-acre estate of Thomas Worthington, Ohio’s sixth governor and one of Ohio’s first United States Senators. Adena is one of only three houses designed by Benjamin Henry Latrobe* that is still standing in the country.

Although once comprised of 2,000 acres only 300 remain. On those 300 acres, you will find the original homestead, five outbuildings and a highly impressive formal garden.

Another area of interest is the north lawn of Adena. Looking east from the north lawn, one can see across the Scioto River Valley to the Logan Range. This view was the inspiration for the Great Seal of Ohio

As I was taking in the view from the north lawn, and mentally removing the modern houses that have since been place there, the guide from Adena told the story of how the inspiration for the seal came about.

“Thomas Worthington and a few good friends had wondered onto the north lawn after attending a soiree at Adena. Apparently the small party had partaken in one too many of the spirits that were offered and passed out upon the north lawn. Awakening the next morning as the sun arose, they were drawn to the beauty of what they were witnessing, and thus deemed the scene worthy to be Ohio’s Great Seal.”

Apparently the creation of Ohio’s State Seal can be attributed to a drunken folly.

*Benjamin Henry Latrobe was a British-born American architect whose buildings include, The United States Capital, the east and west colonnades of the White House, St. John’s Church, Christ Church and many other historic buildings.

Unfortunately, the festival and Adena were the only two places of interest that I was able to see. The week that followed consisted of graduations, parties, picnics, and a massive amount of work when I returned home. I had little time to read, only managing to read one book: A Weekend With Mr. Darcy by Victoria Connelly which was released Sourcebooks this month, so watch for the review to come!

June 4 was filled with a surprise visit from a friend who brought me a lovely cloth map of Scotland as well as an odd proposal to, and I quote, “take a turn in the garden.” I believe he has been watching/reading up on his Jane Austen. Nothing grand happened while ‘taking a turn in the garden’ other than me being chewed alive by a swarm of mosquitoes.

I did manage to start a reread of Northanger Abbey, which happens to be my second favorite Jane Austen novel. Due to the massive pile of paperwork that greeted me when I arrived back at work, I am still reading Northanger Abbey, although I only have two chapters left!

For me it’s a three-day weekend! :-) Which means, I *FINALLY* have a chance to catch-up on my TBR pile, which at this moment is growing at a steady pace. This week I have amassed a grand total of 38 books! Most are review books with release dates spanning from the end of June to August. The others I have purchased.

The books that I have purchased are the following:

The Invasion of Falgannon Isle by Deborah MacGillivray
*A book about an Isle that has 213 single Scotsmen. If there is an Isle like that somewhere, please sign me up for a visit!

Improper English by Katie MacAlister
Erin Song by Diana Groe
The Convenient Marriage by Georgette Heyer
The Tudor Age by Jasper Ridley (nonfiction)
Queen Elizabeth I by Susan Doran (nonfiction)


I am looking forward to spending this weekend with a cuppa tea and a few good books.

I will let you know how many I finish!

Until next time,

Best Wishes & Happy Reading,

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Dark Descendant by Jenna Black

Title: Dark Descendant
Author: Jenna Black
ISBN: 978-1-4516-0679-9
Publisher: Pocket Books
Format: Mass-Market

Nikki Glass can track down any man. But When her latest client turns out to be a true descendent of Hades, Nikki now discovers she can’t die…Crazy as it sounds, Nikki’s man hauling skills are literally god-given. She’s a living, breathing descendant of the gods. Nikki’s new “friends” include a descendant of Eros, who uses sex as a weapon; a descendant of Loki, whose tricks are no laughing matte; and a half-mad descendant of Kali who thinks she’s a spy. But most powerful of all are the Olympians, a rival clan of immortals seeking to destroy all Descendants who refuse to bow down to them. In the eternal battle between good god/bad god, Nikki would make a divine weapon. But if they think she’ll surrender without a fight, the gods must be crazy…
(from the back of the book)

My Thoughts:

This is my first time reading a novel by Jenna Black, and I have to say that it most definitely will not be my last. Her writing is very catching, making the reading want to know more about the story at hand. A mix of Mythos and Urban Fantasy, Dark Descendent has me hooked. I liked the fact that this was not your typical vampire, werewolf, paranormal type of book, but rather a mythical concoction that will leave you craving more.

As this is book one in Jenna Black’s Descendant Series I cannot wait to read what comes next!