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review 2015-03-01 22:05
Making the Moose Out of Life by Nicholas Oldland
Making the Moose Out of Life - Nicholas Oldland

Moose never acted like a moose and he knew he was missing out. Mediating, star gazing, internet searching and a few other means didn’t provide what he was searching for so he decides to set sail in hopes that a water adventure might be what he needs.   Washed up on the shore of a an island after a storm, Moose finds a tortoise and the two of them are faced with difficulties that allow Moose to find what he had been searching for. Moose found a life and he found himself on the island.   As a cruise ship sails by the island, Moose knows it is time that he leaves the island behind.   As he reunites with his friend’s beaver and bear, the three friends are happy to be back together. Moose was a changed animal back on the island but will his old friends like the new Moose?   I really enjoy the illustrations that accompany this text, so simple but they really tell the story. This author does a great job in simplify the information and telling the story so even small children can understand the story and I really enjoy this. The facial expressions and the actions of the animals are exceptional. Truly a wonderful book.

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review 2014-03-18 19:23
ARC Review: Making out with Blowfish by Brian Sweany
Making Out with Blowfish - Brian Sweany

I've marked this as memoirs-autobiography on my shelves, because that's what this reads like. Yes, it's fictional - the town of Empire Ridge doesn't exist - but bear with me for a minute.


This is Hank Fitzpatrick's story. It's the story of his life from the mid-90s until about 2009, getting married, having kids, having a dog, dealing with figuring out himself and those around him, being oblivious to what's right in front of his face, his suppressed anger, his emotional baggage - it's all there in the pages of this book.


Hank is crass in some parts, and he isn't the most easiest character to like, because, let's face it, he's a guy and thus does some stupid stuff, but he's also honest and in your face when he stands up for something he believes in. He loves his wife - that much is always clear. He doesn't always like her, but that is life, and it happens in the best of marriages.


Realism - this book has it. There are moments where I was reminded of my own marriage, my own growing up, and while I'm not male and don't always have the same perspective, I was able to understand Hank's rationale, and also Beth's reactions to his actions.


There are lessons in this book, and I've highlighted a few of them in my e-copy, and there is immense character growth throughout. There are poignant moments, where Hank realizes something profound, and they serve to make him grow. I absolutely loved this, and it was the perfect follow-up to Exotic Music of the Belly Dancer. This is still the same guy, just a little older, with more responsibility. I quite liked Hank. And Beth. And Hatch and Jake.


This book is about family - the one you are born into, and the one you make for yourself. It's about the baggage each one of you brings into the marriage, and about finding a way to love your SO's idiosyncrasies. It's about building a life for yourself and your wife and children, about making choices and standing by them, about forgiving and about not forgiving at all.


The only thing that bothered me is that Brian Sweany chose to more or less gloss over the emotional repercussions of the sexual abuse, but those are emotions that Hank seems to have suppressed for the most part, and that there is only well-deserved rage. There is a moment in this book where Hank sees the truth in the face of lies, and he stands by what he knows to be true.


And there's a moment when Hank needs to learn a different truth, and has to face the fact that his father was not perfect. And that he doesn't have to be perfect either.

The writing is engaging, and the first person POV gives that fly on the wall perspective that draws the reader right in. The editing in this book was, in my humble estimation, also better than the first book.


It feels as if Brian Sweany has found his voice, his real voice, and that it was perhaps a little harder for him to put himself back into the mindset of the teenager he once was, and easier to speak with the voice of the grown man he now is. Even if that grown man still has a lot of teenager in him. It's apparent in how he talks, as Hank, about the early years with Beth, and how their relationship grows in the later years in this book. It also appears as if Beth finds her stride somewhere in her late twenties and sees her husband for who he is, not for who she wanted him to be, something that I would imagine happens to a lot of couples.


I said earlier that this reads more or less like an autobiography. I don't know Mr. Sweany personally, so whether his book has anything much in common with his real life is pure conjecture on my part.


This was a pleasure to read. Highly recommended.

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text 2014-03-17 01:20
Reading progress 30%
Making Out with Blowfish - Brian Sweany

This is just as good as the first one. Hank Fitzpatrick, Take II, still stumbling through his life, thinking with his johnson most of the time, and generally being irreverent. But he loves his wife. 


Really enjoying this! 

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text 2014-02-08 20:50
Great Emotional and Real Sexy Times In Romance Novels
Marrying The Royal Marine - Carla Kelly
The Reluctant Nerd - Sandra Paul
Stranded - Pepper Pace
Forever and a Day - Jill Shalvis
Whisper Falls - Toni Blake
Big Boy - Ruthie Knox
Slightly Dangerous - Mary Balogh
The Chocolate Rose (Amour et Chocolat, La Vie en Roses) - Laura Florand
Sheltered - Charlotte Stein
Dragos Takes a Holiday - Thea Harrison

I actually don't read romance novels for the sex.  LOL. I swear. I like the sex. A lot. But I read romance novels for the psychology of all kinds of relationships and for the world building and for the happily ever afters.  Oh, and love. 


What happily ever after means to me is that no matter what goes down in that book, its going to be all right at close of cover. Its fiction and I enjoy that.


I do love me some good sexy times as well. Good sex in a romance novel is grand. I like all kinds of stream levels and have adored a close door romance as much any erotica. 


My favorite kinds of sex scenes are those that feel possible, emotionial and real. 


I thought it would be fun to share some of my favorites romances with this kind of sensuality.


First a list of love stories with great make out and kissing scenes,  the couples slowly round the bases...


1. Dragos Takes A Holiday (A Novella of the Elder Races) by Thea Harrison 

2. Scandal by Amanda Quick

3. The Sweetest Thing, Simply Irresistible and  Forever and a Day  by Jill Shalvis

4. The Reluctant Nerd by Sandra Paul

5. Dreaming of You by Lisa Kleypas

6. Dangerous Curves Ahead by Sugar Jamison

7. Kiss the BrideThe Chocolate Thief,  and The Chocolate Rose by Laura Florand

8. Live and The Story Guy (Novella) by  Mary Ann Rivers

9. Big Boy by Ruthie Knox 

10. Romancing Mister Bridgerton by Julia Quinn



Moving beyond kissing...


My favorite romances with emotional and real sex scenes:


1. Get Lucky by Suzanne  Brockmann 

 2. Marrying the Royal Marine by Carla Kelly

3. Whisper Falls: A Destiny Novel by Toni Blake

4. Hearts and Swords by Robin Owens

5. Slightly Dangerous by Mary Balogh

6. Yours To Keep (The Kowalskis) by Shannon Stacey

7. Vision In White by Nora Roberts

8. What the Librarian Did by Karina Bliss

9. STRANDED! by Pepper Pace

10. Sheltered by Charlotte Stein 


I could list every Laura Florand book here and every Ruthie Knox book but I won't. I can restrain. Sometimes. 


So, what are your favorite sexy scenes? Kissing? Making out? Touching love scenes? The flirt? Gimme!


If you would like to vote for the best of the best, I have two Goodreads lists for you! Making Love: Best Real and Emotional Sexy Times in Romance Novels and Steaming Up the Windows: Best Make Out and Kiss Scenes in Romance Novels.


And for your Pinterest pleasure--book covers and classy sexy images: Steaming Up the Windows and Great Emotional and Real Love Scenes in Romance Novels.




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review 2013-04-01 00:00
Just Making Out
Just Making Out - Mark A. Roeder Reviewed by: Stephen
Genre: M/M Young Adult
Rated: 4 hearts

Check out the review at: Hearts On Fire Reviews
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