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url 2017-07-05 22:55
Bust Review: The Refrigerator Monologues by Catherynne Valente

I have a new review out on Bust.com. (I haven't really been blogging much because I've been focusing on pitching and writing for publication, but I hope to start being more active again soon.)

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review 2015-08-18 02:54
Bigger Bust Fast: A Step by Step Guide to Increasing Your Bust Size by Kathy Moore
Bigger Bust Fast: A Step by Step Guide to Increasing Your Bust Size - Kathy Moore

I received a free kindle copy of Bigger Bust Fast: A Step by Step Guide to Increasing Your Bust Size by Kathy Moore, published by Bullcity Publishing from an Amazon promotion in exchange for a fair review. I gave it stars.

I gave this poorly edited book two stars. There was barely one sentence without a typo or grammatical error.  Needs a lot work to be readable.

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text 2015-07-21 01:26
Contemporary Romance Set in India
The Zoya Factor - Anuja Chauhan
Spice and Smoke - Suleikha Snyder
A Trip with the Tycoon - Nicola Marsh
A Bollywood Affair - Sonali Dev
The Marriage Bureau for Rich People - Farahad Zama
Monsoon Wedding Fever - Shoma Narayanan
The Elephant Girl - Henriette Gyland
Bollywood Fiancé for a Day (Contemporary Romance) - Ruchi Vasudeva
The Runaway Bridegroom - Sundari Venkatraman
Indian Maidens Bust Loose - Vidya Samson

It is very Monsoon like in Southern Califorina today. So, lets go to where the real Monsoons are--India.

 

Enjoy these great Contemporary Romance Novels set in India.

 

My lists are never in any particular order. 

 

1. THE ZOYA FACTOR by Anuja Chauhan

 

When the younger players in India's cricket team find out that advertising executive Zoya Singh Solanki was born at the very moment India won the World Cup back in 1983, they are intrigued. When having breakfast with her is followed by victories on the field, they are impressed. And when not eating with her results in defeat, they decide she's a lucky charm.The nation goes a step further. Amazed at the ragtag team's sudden spurt of victories, it declares her a Goddess.So when the eccentric IBCC president and his mesmeric, always-exquisitely-attired Swamiji invite Zoya to accompany the team to the tenth ICC World Cup, she has no choice but to agree.Pursued by international cricket boards on the one hand, wooed by Cola majors on the other, Zoya struggles to stay grounded in the thick of the world cup action. And it doesn't help that she keeps clashing with the erratically brilliant new skipper who tells her flatly that he doesn't believe in luck…

 

2. Spice and Smoke by Suleikha Snyder

 

When the cameras stop rolling, the real scene begins. 

 

To their adoring public, Avi Kumar and Trishna Chaudhury are Bollywood’s sweethearts. Behind closed doors, their open marriage lets them freely indulge in all manner of forbidden passions. The arrangement suits them both, but as they begin filming on the set of their new movie, the heat of new and rekindled flames singes the pages of what they thought would be a fresh script. 

 

When costars Michael Gill and Harsh Mathur arrive on set, the sexual temperature goes up exponentially—at least for Trish. She can’t take her eyes of Harsh, for whom she’s carried a torch for years. Avi’s instant attraction to Michael, however, bounces off Michael’s solid wall of resistance. 

 

Meanwhile, ex-boyfriends Vikram Malhotra and Sam Khanna, cast as fictional enemies, are finding it harder and harder to control the very real demons that once cost them the love of a lifetime. 

 

Once the music starts, though, they all have no choice but to dance . And pray the fallout doesn’t ruin all their careers…and destroy their love.

 

3. A Trip with the Tycoon by Nicola Marsh

 

Determined to forget her husband's infidelity and bring her confident, fiery self back, Tamara Rayne is in India on a trip of a lifetime. Love isn't on her itinerary, so she hardly notices when blast from her past Ethan Brooks boards her train….

The maverick entrepreneur has wanted Tamara ever since he met her. Under the shimmer of the Indian sun, Ethan decides he's waited long enough….

 

4. A Bollywood Affair by Sonali Dev

 

Mili Rathod hasn’t seen her husband in twenty years—not since she was promised to him at the age of four. Yet marriage has allowed Mili a freedom rarely given to girls in her village. Her grandmother has even allowed her to leave India and study in America for eight months, all to make her the perfect modern wife. Which is exactly what Mili longs to be—if her husband would just come and claim her. 

 

Bollywood’s favorite director, Samir Rathod, has come to Michigan to secure a divorce for his older brother. Persuading a naïve village girl to sign the papers should be easy for someone with Samir’s tabloid-famous charm. But Mili is neither a fool nor a gold-digger. Open-hearted yet complex, she’s trying to reconcile her independence with cherished traditions. And before he can stop himself, Samir is immersed in Mili’s life—cooking her dal and rotis, escorting her to her roommate’s elaborate Indian wedding, and wondering where his loyalties and happiness lie.

 

5. The Marriage Bureau for Rich People by Farahad Zama

 

Bored with retirement, Mr. Ali sets up a desk, puts up a sign, and waits for customers for his new matchmaking business. Some clients are a mystery. Some are a challenge. Mr. Ali's assistant, Aruna, finds it a learning experience. But without a dowry, Aruna has no expectation of a match for herself. Then again, as people go about planning their lives, sometimes fate is making other arrangements.

 

6. Monsoon Wedding Fever by Shoma Narayanan

 

Coming home one night, Riya was not expecting to find the man who broke her heart sleeping on her floor! He's a guest at her roommate's wedding, so she's stuck with him 24/7—and the sparks are already flying!

Six years ago Riya fell for Dhruv, whereas he didn't believe in love. Not then, not now—the other reason he's in India is to consider an arranged marriage! But as the monsoons start, Riya and Dhruv are forced to confront what drove them apart. Could this wedding fever be…contagious?

 

7. The Elephant Girl by Henriette Gyland

 

Peek-a-boo I see you… 
When five-year-old Helen Stephens witnesses her mother’s murder, her whole world comes crumbling down. Rejected by her extended family, Helen is handed over to child services and learns to trust no-one but herself. Twenty years later, her mother’s killer is let out of jail, and Helen swears vengeance. 

Jason Moody runs a halfway house, desperate to distance himself from his father’s gangster dealings. But when Helen shows up on his doorstep, he decides to dig into her past, and risks upsetting some very dangerous people. 

As Helen begins to question what really happened to her mother, Jason is determined to protect her. But Helen is getting too close to someone who’ll stop at nothing to keep the truth hidden …

 

8. Bollywood Fiancé for a Day by Ruchi Vasudeva

 

Winning the chance to meet the ultimate Bollywood heartthrob, Zaheer Saxena, is just what Vishakha needs to take her mind off her recent humiliation—being jilted the week before her wedding! And when gorgeous Zaheer offers to be her fake fiancé, the chance to save face with her family is just too tempting….

 

It's a deal that benefits them both—Zaheer is warding off any unwanted female attention until his next film is finished—but can Vishakha trust herself not to hope that her dream fiancé for a day could turn into forever?

 

9. The Runaway Bridegroom by Sundari Venkatraman

 

Chanda Maheshwari’s family is shaken when her thirteen-year-old bridegroom Veerendra runs away immediately after the wedding. The eight-year-old child doesn’t even understand the impact on her life. Unable to face their neighbours and friends, the Maheshwaris move from their village to Jaipur and begin a new life in the city. 

Fourteen years later, Chanda is studying in a Delhi College. She takes up a temporary job at RS Software Pvt. Ltd. and falls head-over-heels for the boss of the operation. But what about Ranveer Singh? Is he interested in her? 

Ranveer’s secretary Shikha is desperate to make him fall for her. All she wants is life-long security with a rich man. But it’s nerd Abhimanyu who keeps getting in the way. Abhi is Ranveer’s second-in-command and Shikha isn’t keen on him as she’s eyeing the main chance. 

When Ranveer appears to show interest in Chanda, she’s faced with a new problem. Astrologer Vidyasagar insists that she would get back with her husband Veerendra. Does anyone want to know what she wants? 

Chanda feels torn between the man she has fallen for and the family values that have been instilled in her. Will she ever find happiness?

 

10.  Prince Charming Wanted; Dowry Seekers Kiss Off! by Vidya Samson

 

Nisha Desai is a young Indian woman who pines for romance in a country where love is in the same class as malaria, and where mates are selected using a calculator.

Normally deluged with ghastly suitors of her father's choosing, she suddenly finds herself on the short list for a bride-seeing tour by a rich and handsome nephew of a neighbor. This is the stuff of which dreams are made.

A nightmare materializes when a very un-Indian ruffian moves in next door, complete with beard and obnoxious Harley motorcycle. He might play the bad boy in one of Nisha's beloved romance novels, but in real life, he terrifies her.

So she tries to ignore the thundering engine of the bike while anxiously awaiting the arrival of Prince Charming--or at least, Prince Rich. 

But arriving first is a long-lost black-sheep American aunt and her trouble-magnet teenage daughters. The aunt proves to be a New Age space case, while the cousins’ appetite for disasters threatens to level the city of Ahmedabad. In short order, the demented cousins instigate an elopement, a public protest, and a riot that gets Nisha thrown in jail. 

Nisha’s family comes to the conclusion that while East and West may meet, sometimes they shouldn't. The guests are seen as an invading force, equipped with weapons of mass corruption.

While Nisha wonders how she can hide her now corroded reputation from the dream suitor's family, insanity marches on. Nisha's father adopts a pet cow and convinces half the city it's the reincarnation of a Hindu deity. The two families are finally united in a common goal: to bilk thousands. The result is Madison Avenue's idea of a religious experience, which is not a controllable situation.

Indian Maidens Bust Loose is a hilarious romantic comedy set in the land of cows, curry, and the Kama Sutra.

 

Do you have a rec? Let me know! Vote on my Goodreads list: Contemporary Romance Set in India

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review 2014-08-17 18:45
Quick, cute, and dark...
Headless Bust: A Melancholy Meditation on the False Millennium - Edward Gorey

Pretty much everything you'd expect from Gorey.   Took it out of the library, and I'm glad I did.   Worth a quick read, but I'm not sure I'd buy it, at least not for myself. 

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review 2014-06-07 00:12
Optimus Prime bust. With Book. Review.
Transformers: Light-Up Optimus Prime Bust and Illustrated Book - Running Press

So there are four components to this review: the bust itself, the light-up-ness of the bust, and the vocalness of the bust, as well as the book.   I averaged the pleasure I took from all four of these. 

 

The bust itself is disappointing, cheap-looking with tacky colors.   I'm actually glad they didn't do one for, say, Bee or Grimlock because it would have been even more disappointing if I liked the character more.   Because the cult of OP fixation?   I just don't get it, even in Aligned, which comes closest to explaining his Gary Stu-like abilities.   (Although I do respect the cult of said adoration, which makes more sense than many of my fixations.   I just don't get it, and I do feel that he has some uber-powers, but he is not a Gary Stu himself.)

 

The lights?   A little disappointing, but not that much.   I wasn't really expecting anything super bright or super brilliant for the $12.95 price tag, although I did expect a little more care to be put into the physical appearance of the thing.  (I also got it less than list price.)  

 

The voice?    It's Cullen, no doubt.   And it's surprisingly hot; I don't normally get all hot and bothered for Optimus, but for some reason this tacky little thing does it for me when it talks.   Go figure. 

 

And the book.  Holy Primus,the book.   It's really just my boys posing and their quotes on the opposite page, with some pages identifying them and the opposite page being another posed illustration.   I'm pretty sure these are originals, but they may be old promos.   I'm not that into G1, so I don't really know.   But it's... fantastic.  I've read it twice, at least, today, although it only takes a minute or two.   Mileage will definitely vary, but it was 100% worth the price just for this book for me.    Because it's not just Prime.   It's Soundwave, and Shockwave, and Bee, and Grimlock.   Mmmm. 

 

So: 

 

Bust: 1 star

Lights: 2 stars

Voice: 5 stars

Book: 5 stars.   

 

Since I really, really loved the things I loved, and was between 'ew' and 'meh' with the stuff I didn't like, I figured three stars was not only about the average, but fair.   Is this worth the price for others?   Only if you're a pretty hardcore fan, want the eye candy the book provides, or need to have Cullen's Prime near at hand, and ready to speak to you at a moment's notice.   I think this might be nicer as a small gift, or am add-on to a gift, especially if you're waffling on the purchase for yourself. 

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