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review 2017-12-10 17:30
All is Fair by Emma Newman
All is Fair: The Split Worlds - Book Three - Emma Newman

Series: Split Worlds #3

 

This book took me quite a while to get through, so this is actually the first book I've finished in December, but that shouldn't be viewed as a negative reflection on the book. The book (and the series) is great. Here we have the aftermath of the last book playing out and Cathy learns more about the Agency and tries to find new ways to help people in the Nether now that she's duchess. William even redeems himself a bit and the side plot with Lord Iron really didn't go the way I expected. I didn't expect the sorcerer of Mercia stuff to go the way it did either. Unexpectedness all around! 

 

The green cover lets me count this for square 10 for Festive tasks, Pancha Ganapati: read a book whose cover has one of the 5 colors of the holiday: red, blue, green, orange, or yellow.

 

I've decided to count this book for square 7's International Human Rights Day book instead, read any story revolving around the rights of others either being defended or abused. Cathy learns that even though she's paying the Agency for her servants as if they're earning wages, the servants don't actually receive wages and so she sets out to change this in her household. She also tries to seek out like-minded people who could help her fight for women's rights in the Nether.

 

And you know what's next in the series? The fourth book! (I'm pretty that's one of the other squares). [edit: square 5, actually: Advent]

 

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review 2017-12-01 13:01
Blog Tour w/Review - Lips Close To Mine

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Lips Close to Mine, an all-new sexy STANDALONE romance from Robin Bielman is available now!

 

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Lips Close to Mine

by Robin Bielman

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: November 20th

 

 

Synopsis:

 

I wasn’t supposed to see Levi Pierce ever again. A few months ago, he charmed the pants off me and we spent one incredible night together.

 

End of story.

 

Only it wasn’t. Pretty soon everywhere I turn, I see him. Our best friends are dating. My mother mistakenly—and happily—thinks he’s my plus-one to my cousin’s wedding. And he’s the guy I have to work with on the most important job opportunity of my life.

Here’s my problem: I like Levi. I like his killer smile and his dreamboat eyes and definitely the way he makes me feel in bed. But I’ve sworn off relationships. So when the sexual tension reaches epic proportions and we fall back into bed together, I tell myself it’s temporary. When I start to feel more, I tell myself it’s over.

 

Only Levi isn’t a forget-it kind of guy. When his lips are close to mine and he swears he’s always wanted me, my defenses disappear. But some things in life just aren’t meant to be.

 

 

Or are they?

 

 

 

 

Excerpt:

 

 

      “What do you say we open that champagne then skinny-dip in the fountain?” I ask, releasing my seat belt. That I’m dying to Harper her naked again might have something to do with my suggestion, too.        

 

She searches my eyes for clues I’m serious. I help her out. “Unless you’re chicken.”

 

        With a straight face, she unclicks her seat belt, picks up the bottle of champagne and proceeds to pop the cork like a champ. She takes a swig, her full lips wrapped around the bottle, her eyes never leaving mine. My dick twitches as I imagine her gorgeous mouth sucking me deep. Full disclosure: I’ve been picturing this every damn night for the past two months.        

 

“Your turn.” She hands me the bottle as her tongue licks across her full bottom lip. If she’s trying to torture me, it’s working.        

 

Our fingers brush when I accept the Dom Perignon, and once again, the small, effortless touch isn’t enough. I take a small gulp of the sparkling drink, mindful I’m driving. When finished, I pass it back. “So, your cousin said something interesting to me tonight.”        

 

“Shit.”         .

 

I laugh. The harder Harper tries to keep me at arm’s length, the more her family tries to draw me in. “Since you’re sitting at the head table during the wedding reception, she wanted me to know I’ll be sitting with your brothers.”        

 

She chokes on the champagne. “What the hell? I never RSVP’d you were my plus-one.”        

 

“Your mom did.”        

 

Harper’s head falls back against the seat, chin up, eyes closed. “That woman is impossible. I’ll tell them you’re not coming to the wedding.”        

 

“I don’t mind.”        

 

“I do.”        

 

All right. Whatever you want.”        

 

“That’s it? Just like that, you’re not coming now?” She shifts positions, drawing her legs up so she’s sitting on them and facing me. I hadn’t noticed that she’d slipped off her shoes.        

 

“I don’t want to make you uncomfortable around your family.”        

 

“You don’t do that.”        

 

“You sure? I think I do.”        

 

“No. You don’t. Not even a little. But…”        

 

“But what?”        

 

“I did tell my mom I had a date so she wouldn’t bug me about it. I was planning to find a random guy to go with me, so I guess since she thinks it’s you…” She takes a drink, extends me the bottle.        

 

I put my palm over my heart. “How magnanimous of you.”        

 

“I know,” she teases. “Don’t you forget it.”        

 

“So I am going to the wedding?”        

 

“Yes.”

 

 

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Read Today!

 

Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2hrUZ2W

Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2gScl8u

Amazon Print: http://amzn.to/2zJbKQZ

iBooks: http://apple.co/2yZIcfA

Nook:http://bit.ly/2zkgT2n

Kobo:http://bit.ly/2yMdc1N

 

Add to GoodReads: http://bit.ly/2gnmlWT

 

 

 

 

 

Lips Close to Mine (Wherever You Go, #2)Lips Close to Mine by Robin Bielman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is book #2, in the Wherever You Go series. This book can be read as a standalone novel. For reader enjoyment, and to avoid spoilers, I recommend reading this series in order.

Harper and Levi have both sweet and hot history. All she knows now, is she cannot stop thinking about him. How he sets her on fire. The chemistry between them is unreal.

Levi wants another chance with Harper and she seems wary of that. He is consumed with thoughts about her and their time together. Thanks to mutual friends, they see one another often.

This is such a fun series! These characters have remarkable heat. The banter is fun, the pace solid and consistent. Was an easy and delightful read.


***This ARC copy was given in exchange for an honest review, by Netgalley and its publisher.

View all my reviews

 

 

 

 

 

 

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About Robin:

 

 

When not attached to her laptop, USA Today Bestselling Author and RITA Finalist, Robin Bielman can almost always be found with her nose in a book. A California girl, the beach is her favorite place for fun and inspiration. Her fondness for swoon-worthy heroes who flirt and stumble upon the girl they can’t live without jumpstarts most of her story ideas. She loves to go on adventures, and has skydived, scuba dived, parasailed, gotten lost in the wilderness (and only suffered a gazillion bug bites for it) hiked to waterfalls, and swam with dolphins. In her spare time she also likes to put her treadmill to good use while watching her favorite TV shows, take hikes with her hubby, indulge her sweet tooth, and play sock tug of war with her cute, but sometimes naughty dog, Harry. She dreams of traveling to faraway places and loves to connect with readers. Keep in touch at all of her social media spots! 

 

Connect With Robin:

 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RobinBielmanWriter

Twitter: @RobinBielman

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/robin-bielman

GoodReads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5825070.Robin_Bielman

 

Stay up to date with Robin by signing up for her newsletter:

https://goo.gl/HTtAzl

http://robinbielman.com

 

 

 

 

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review 2017-11-26 14:33
Festivus: The Holiday for the Rest of Us ★★☆☆☆
Festivus: The Holiday for the Rest of Us - Allen Salkin,Jerry Stiller

This book may have more interest and/or meaning for fans of Seinfeld. I’ve never watched the show, so a significant amount of the content, discussing the introduction of Festivus to the general public on an episode of Seinfeld and the making of that episode, were of no interest to me at all. There was a little information attempting to paint Festivus as a celebration that predates even the ancient Romans – a spontaneous celebration about nothing in particular, or partying just for the sake of partying, and thumbing its nose at the intense preparations and expectations of traditional holiday celebrations like Christmas.

 

If so, an entire book about how to put on a Festivus celebration, complete with getting an aluminum pole (of no particular size or type), sending invitations, making party favors, and recipes for dishes and drinks, seems antithetical to the entire concept of a party that shuns party planning and social pressure to put on a show of celebration. Much of the book provides examples of ways that people have celebrated Festivus, with photos and essays. These were probably a lot more fun to engage in than to read about. The most interesting part of the book to me, and regrettably only lightly touched on, is the way Festivus has been used in the ongoing battle in the US over displays of religious holidays on public/government property.

 

As a guide for putting on your own Festivus in the style of Seinfeld, I suppose it’s a good one. For anyone who is not a Seinfeld fan  or interested in hosting a Seinfeld-style Festivus celebration, your life won’t be any the poorer for skipping this book.

 

This was the ebook version, borrowed from my public library. I read this for The 16 Tasks of the Festive Season, as a Holiday Book Joker. I’ll be using it for square 12, Tasks for Festivus: Post your personal list of 3 Festivus Miracles –OR– post a picture of your Festivus pole (NOTHING pornographic, please!), –OR– Perform the Airing of Grievances:  name 5 books you’ve read this year that have disappointed you - tell us in tongue-lashing detail why and how they failed to live up to expectations.

 

 

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review 2017-11-24 16:44
Quick but lots to think on
Waiting for the Taliban: A Journey Through North Afghanistan - Anna Badkhen

This has been my eBook read while at work. Good but more like a magazine article. Did come away with some great food for thought about why Afghanistan is such a quagmire in terms of help, assistance, and why the war is dragging on with no end in sight. 

 

Also, I learned lots of new words like kleptocracy (rule by a thief or thieves). Love that term! 

 

 

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review 2017-11-24 13:58
The Watcher: Jane Goodall’s Life with the Chimps ★★★★☆
The Watcher: Jane Goodall's Life with the Chimps - Jeanette Winter

Crossing the ocean, Jane stayed on deck

and watched the waves, even when the cold wind blew.

She saw all the different blues and greens of the sea,

and fish that glowed through the dark water.

 

 

What I loved best about this little children’s book was the emphasis that was placed on Jane Goodall’s accomplishments and the characteristics of her person and work that helped her to achieve them – curiosity, determination despite hardship, and patient observation, but done in a way that was celebratory rather than preachy. I enjoyed the artwork, too, with its bright unusual colors and sense of motion. In telling Goodall’s story, the book also tells us a story about the forest in Gombe in Tanzania, where deforestation and poaching were threatening the chimpanzees with extinction, accompanied by a rather horrifying illustration of a poacher aiming a gun at a mother chimp playing with her infant chimp amid tree stumps. Although the book tries to end on a high note, that illustration is the one that stuck with me after finishing.

 

This was an ebook, borrowed from my public library. I read this for The 16 Tasks of the Festive Season, square 14: Book themes for Quaid-e-Azam:  Pakistan became an independent nation when the British Raj ended on August 14, 1947. Read a book set in Pakistan or in any other country that attained sovereign statehood between August 14, 1947 and today (regardless in what part of the world). This book is set in Tanzania, which became independent from the UK in 1961, according to Wikipedia.

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