WWW Wednesday – What I’m Reading…

WWW Wednesday – What I’m Reading

It’s been a few weeks since I’ve posted this. I’ve been neglecting my blog in my rush to get Coming Home ready for re-release, but this reading this is getting too long to hold off another week!

I’ve been hauling in the books lately, thanks to gift cards and Christmas presents, but I thought I’d share that 5 out of the 6 books I’ve read were borrowed either from the library or from friends! Sharing is caring!!

This meme is hosted by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. A similar meme, This Week in Books is hosted by Lipsyy Lost and Found.

Why not join in? Just answer the following three questions about what you’re reading in a post and then put a link to that post in the Comments over at Taking on a World of Words.

The questions are:

  1. WHAT I’M READING

  2. WHAT I FINISHED READING

  3. WHAT WILL I READ NEXT

What I’m Reading…

 Just so you know, I’m not jumping on the Carrie FisherBoba Fett and Princess Leia bandwagon because of her death – I’ve been firmly on board since I first saw Star Wars. I was one of the many fans devastated by her untimely death.

Saying that, yes, I bought this book because it details her affair with Harrison Ford during the making of Star Wars. I would have gotten it anyway because I have her other books, but maybe not so quick after release! C’mon – Leia and Han? IRL?!

What I’ve Read…

Here’s my list, because it’s been a while!

New Futuristic Thrillers with Eve and Roarke!

I should really put J.D Robb on the list of my favourite authors. she never disappoints. The futuristic catch-the-bad-guy books are always entertaining, full of non-stop action and sexy bits with Lt. Eve Dallas and her hubby, ruler of the world, Roarke.

Sci-fi, Romance, insane AI, plague zombies, planet invasions all in one!

Blurb – This morning, Kady thought breaking up with Ezra was the hardest thing she’d have to do.

This afternoon, her planet was invaded.

The year is 2575, and two rival megacorporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to fight their way onto an evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit.

But their problems are just getting started. A deadly plague has broken out and is mutating, with terrifying results; the fleet’s AI, which should be protecting them, may actually be their enemy; and nobody in charge will say what’s really going on. As Kady hacks into a tangled web of data to find the truth, it’s clear only one person can help her bring it all to light: the ex-boyfriend she swore she’d never speak to again.

Told through a fascinating dossier of hacked documents—including emails, schematics, military files, IMs, medical reports, interviews, and more—Illuminae is the first book in a heart-stopping, high-octane trilogy about lives interrupted, the price of truth, and the courage of everyday heroes.

This was a very cool read. I should use better adjectives, but it is what it is – a very cool book. I’ve never read anything like it and already have the second in the series waiting impatiently for me to pick it up!

Kids threatening world politics, lost princesses – only so-so

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I borrowed the YA Embassy Row series by Ally Carter. I won’t go into many details because I was kind of disappointed. The premise behind the series was great but the writing – the trilogy could have easily be a single book if half of the inane “Are you, okay Grace?” ‘Gracie, are you okay?” comments were cut, as well as all the running going on. Grace never ran anywhere in particular and I suspect the author was trying to imply Grace was running from her problems. I don’t think it was necessary.

Anyway, an easy, fast read. 3 stars for the series. Maybe 2.5

What I’ll Read Next…

Here’s my choices!  Please help me pick one to start!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One last reminder!!! If you’re in the Toronto area, drop in and say hi tonight!!

Happy Valentine’s Day!! Meet Me Tomorrow and a Giveaway!

 

Happy Valentine’s Day!!!

I can’t wait to meet some of my favourite people tomorrow – my readers!!!  If you’re in the Toronto area, join me at the Humber Bay Library tomorrow night!

I’m giving away books!!

And don’t forget, today is the last day for the Rom-Com/chick lit giveaway! Here’s your chance to find your favourite new author!

InstaFreebie Giveaway! 

 

 

 

Going back to Coming Home

Coming Home has come home to Holly

Picking a Favourite

For writers, books are like children – it’s impossible to have a favourite.

When my kids ask who my favourite child is, I always tell them I love them equally and for different reasons.

I feel the same way about the books I’ve written. I love Unexpecting because it was my first published and because of the secondary characters, Cooper and Emma and Brit. I love Absinthe because of the friendship of the women, and the twist at the end (which was fun to write!) I love Charlotte because I found I love writing action sequences, and I love Dragon for my kids.

 

 

I love Coming Home because…

And there lies the problem. Coming Home is the black sheep of my book family. I love it but…

…it has issues.

The History

Coming Home was published in 2013, by Etopia Press. The first time one of my books had been sold to a publisher, which helped validate my new attempt at a writing career. I loved the story – five sisters who grew up in a tiny little town in Northern Ontario; two of which loved each other but really never got along.

I still love the story. I love the characters and the interactions and the fight scene between… (oops, spoiler!)

I dedicated the book to my sister, because after she left a tumultuous marriage, I felt like I was getting my sister back in my life. Not only getting my sister back, but finding a new friend. Coming Home has a lot of personal meaning for me and I was ecstatic when I sold it to Etopia.

Last year, I starting working on finding my brand and all those fun marketing things that authors now need to deal with. I had covers re-did, changed some things around; I’m an independent author/publisher now, so I can do that! 🙂 I looked at Coming Home.

I couldn’t do a thing with it. I couldn’t change the description on-line, drop the price for a sale, change the cover (which doesn’t really fit with my others). My hands were tied, which wasn’t a nice feeling after doing everything myself for the last 4 years! So I started wondering what I could do. Coming Home never really sold well for Etopia. It’s mainly a romance publisher, and my book isn’t a romance. Plus, there was the edit problem when it first came out…

I’m not about to trash Etopia because they are lovely people. But let’s just say I was never really happy with the final version of the book. 

And now…

Long story short, I got the rights for Coming Home back from the publisher! And I’m about to re-release it into the world, under my Three Birds Press imprint.

New cover – same title

Same story – complete overhaul

I wrote Coming Home at the beginning of my career and I have to admit, I’m a MUCH better writer now! I’m almost finished the revisions – I’ve changed the POV from first person, to third, which is a bit of an undertaking. With critique partners now. Sending it to the editor next week. Cover reveal next week, and pre-order date.

I can’t say how much I’M IN LOVE WITH THIS BOOK!

It’s like the first time, all over again. It’s getting excited about a scene or a line of dialogue in the middle of the night, rushing to wake up to begin working on it. I can’t wait for people to read it! I’ll have to do a giveaway. In fact, I’m so happy with my changes that I want to offer a copy (paperback or ebook) to anyone who read the other version, just so they can see how much better it is! (Corinne, are you out there?)

So that’s what I’ve been up to lately. This is why my blog has been neglected. This is why I had to push off any thoughts of a book tour for The Best Worst First Date because it’s not ready! This is why my daughter is mad at me because I won’t work on her Dragon book! Coming Home has consumed me. I planned for a week of quick edits, a read-through by one of my crit partners which has now turned into two months and counting of daily re-writes of chapters. Cutting – I’ve cut so much! But it’s so much better for it.

I hope I’ve gotten you excited about it, too. Because you’ll be able to read it soon! 🙂

 

WWW Wednesday – What I’m Reading

On to this week’s WWW – What I’m Reading…

WWW WednesdayThis meme is hosted by Sam over at Taking on a World of Words. A similar meme, This Week in Books is hosted by Lipsyy Lost and Found.

Why not join in? Just answer the following three questions about what you’re reading in a post and then put a link to that post in the Comments over at Taking on a World of Words.

The questions are:

  1. WHAT I’M READING

  2. WHAT I FINISHED READING

  3. WHAT WILL I READ NEXT

What I’m Reading…

Blurb – Rachel Blum and Andy Landis are eight years old when they meet late one night in an ER waiting room. Born with a congenital heart defect, Rachel is a veteran of hospitals, and she’s intrigued by the boy who shows up all alone with a broken arm. He tells her his name. She tells him a story. After Andy’s taken back to the emergency room and Rachel’s sent back to her bed, they think they’ll never see each other again.

Rachel, the beloved, popular, and protected daughter of two doting parents, grows up wanting for nothing in a fancy Florida suburb. Andy grows up poor in Philadelphia with a single mom and a rare talent that will let him become one of the best runners of his generation.

Over the course of three decades, through high school and college, marriages and divorces, from the pinnacles of victory and the heartbreak of defeat, Andy and Rachel will find each other again and again, until they are finally given a chance to decide whether love can surmount difference and distance and if they’ve been running toward each other all along.

I’ve never read Jennifer Weiner before but I’ll be looking for more of her work after this!

What I’ve Read…

Blurb – Marie-Laure lives with her father in Paris near the Museum of Natural History, where he works as the master of its thousands of locks. When she is six, Marie-Laure goes blind and her father builds a perfect miniature of their neighborhood so she can memorize it by touch and navigate her way home. When she is twelve, the Nazis occupy Paris and father and daughter flee to the walled citadel of Saint-Malo, where Marie-Laure’s reclusive great-uncle lives in a tall house by the sea. With them they carry what might be the museum’s most valuable and dangerous jewel.

In a mining town in Germany, the orphan Werner grows up with his younger sister, enchanted by a crude radio they find. Werner becomes an expert at building and fixing these crucial new instruments, a talent that wins him a place at a brutal academy for Hitler Youth, then a special assignment to track the resistance. More and more aware of the human cost of his intelligence, Werner travels through the heart of the war and, finally, into Saint-Malo, where his story and Marie-Laure’s converge.

I finally got around to reading this and so glad I did. I gave it a 4.5 stars only because I wanted a different ending. Beautiful book – the story and the writing and the characters

Blurb – “Are you happy with your life?”

Those are the last words Jason Dessen hears before the masked abductor knocks him unconscious.

Before he awakens to find himself strapped to a gurney, surrounded by strangers in hazmat suits.

Before a man Jason’s never met smiles down at him and says, “Welcome back, my friend.”

In this world he’s woken up to, Jason’s life is not the one he knows. His wife is not his wife. His son was never born. And Jason is not an ordinary college physics professor, but a celebrated genius who has achieved something remarkable. Something impossible.

Is it this world or the other that’s the dream? And even if the home he remembers is real, how can Jason possibly make it back to the family he loves? The answers lie in a journey more wondrous and horrifying than anything he could’ve imagined—one that will force him to confront the darkest parts of himself even as he battles a terrifying, seemingly unbeatable foe.

This book blew my mind, both for the quantum physics involved and just how excellent it was. Five stars all around!  This mind-bending sci-fi thriller should be on everyone’s TBR list and was on my best reads of 2016. Since I finished it on Jan 1, I think it will have to go on my best of 2017 too!!

Blurb – In 1837, less than a month after her eighteenth birthday, Alexandrina Victoria – sheltered, small in stature, and female – became Queen of Great Britain and Ireland. Many thought it was preposterous: Alexandrina — Drina to her family — had always been tightly controlled by her mother and her household, and was surely too unprepossessing to hold the throne. Yet from the moment William IV died, the young Queen startled everyone: abandoning her hated first name in favor of Victoria; insisting, for the first time in her life, on sleeping in a room apart from her mother; resolute about meeting with her ministers alone.

One of those ministers, Lord Melbourne, became Victoria’s private secretary. Perhaps he might have become more than that, except everyone argued she was destined to marry her cousin, Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha. But Victoria had met Albert as a child and found him stiff and critical: surely the last man she would want for a husband….

Queen Victoria is a monarch that I knew little about but after reading Goodwin’s book, I can’t wait to find out more.  It’s fascinating to learn about how she came to the throne as a sheltered, naive girl and grew to one of the most influential monarchs. Her era brought change to all aspects of Great Britain. I can’t wait to watch the PBS series when it comes to Canada, as well as look up Goodwin’s other books.

Blurb – First person in her family to go to college? CHECK.
Straight A’s? CHECK.
On track to graduate early? CHECK.
Social life? …..yeah, about that….

With just a few weeks until she graduates, Antonella DeLuca’s beginning to worry that maybe she hasn’t had the full college experience. (Okay… Scratch that. She knows she hasn’t had the full college experience).

So Nell does what a smart, dedicated girl like herself does best. She makes a “to do” list of normal college activities.

Item #1? Hook up with a jock.

Rusk University wide receiver Mateo Torres practically wrote the playbook for normal college living. When he’s not on the field, he excels at partying, girls, and more partying. As long as he keeps things light and easy, it’s impossible to get hurt… again. But something about the quiet, shy, sexy-as-hell Nell gets under his skin, and when he learns about her list, he makes it his mission to help her complete it.

Torres is the definition of confident (And sexy. And wild), and he opens up a side of Nell that she’s never known. But as they begin to check off each crazy, exciting, normal item, Nell finds that her frivolous list leads to something more serious than she bargained for. And while Torres is used to taking risks on the field, he has to decide if he’s willing to take the chance when it’s more than just a game.

Here’s a quick little ditty I read to catch up on my Goodreads challenge! Cora Carmack is one of a handful of NA authors I turn to when I want something sweet and sexy.

What I’ll Read Next…

This feels like the ‘I’ve finally read that‘ post, so maybe I’ll keep with it and check out my TBR list to see what else I have to read.  Suggestions are always welcome. As you can see, I’m open to just about anything!!

 

Best of 2016 – My Favourite Movies, Books and T.V

Happy New Year!

2016 is over

And the consensus is that is a good thing.

Everyone can agree that a great many bad things happened in 2016. And then to top it off, only days from the end, George Michael and Carrie Fisher passed away. And her mother, Debbie Reynolds. But instead of dwelling on the negatives, I chose to look at the positives. Like all these good things that happened in 2016:

  • The manatee population is increasing! And there are more tigers. And more pandas
  • In California, 6 million homes are now powered by solar energy. And a solar-powered plane circled the world
  • India planted 50 million trees in one day
  • The Ice Bucket Challenge helped ALS researchers get one step closer to help find a cure for the disease
  • Leonardo Dicaprio won an Oscar!

A Few of My Favourite Things

Let’s start with a few lists of my favourite things from 2016.

Movies

Now, these aren’t the best movies of 2016, but the ones I was looking forward to seeing, and didn’t disappoint.

As you’ll see from my list, I go primarily for entertainment value when it comes to my movies – entertainment that often involves laughter, comic book heroes and things blowing up! What can I say – I go for mindless entertainment! I’m also a self-professed geek, and since 2 out of my 3 kids are headed that way as well, we go see a lot of ‘fun’ movies!

Favourite Movies of 2016

(in no particular order)

  • Captain America – Civil War
  • Rogue One
  • Bad Moms
  • Deadpool
  • Finding Dory
  • Dr. Strange
  • Batman vs Superman
  • Suicide Squad
  • Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

Favourite Television shows

  • Stranger Things – this Netflix show was amazing! Scarier than I expected (I ran from the room more than once, to my kids’ delight at seeing their mother scared!) Set in the 80s with a weird Lost/Stand By Me feel to it, I’m counting the days until the next season
  • Game of Thrones (season 6) – Oh, Jon Snow. And Tyrion. And Daenarys. And Arya Stark. How do I love thee?
  • The Crown – Another good one from Netflix. I’ve always been mildly interested in the royal family, but now I’m hooked!
  • Madam Secretary – Does anyone watch this? Because I never hear anything about it, but it’s terrific

Favourite Books I Read in 2016

  • Eligible (Curtis Sittenfeld) – best retelling of Pride and Prejudice. Ever.
  • Ready Player One (Ernest Cline)  – full of 80s references, this sci-fi thriller would appeal to anyone who likes action, not just the gamers. I’ve already passed it on to 2 guys I know will love it as much as I did
  • It Ends With Us (Colleen Hoover) -I read anything of hers
  • The Court of Mist and Fury (Sarah J. Maas) – the second in this YA fantasy series so much better than the first book! And I never like the second books in a series. Can’t wait for the next one
  • Kindred Spirits (Rainbow Rowell)  – Short and sweet, about two fans waiting in line for the new Star Wars movie
  • Mount (Jilly Cooper) – It’s been years since Jilly Cooper released a book and I’ve been (im)patiently waiting! This is smut, in it’s finest form
  • Nuts (Alice Clayton)
  • Dirty Rowdy Thing (Christina Lauren)  – Sexy and sweet from two of my favourite New Adult authors
  • Victoria (Daisy Goodwin) – I’m all about the royal families. Can’t wait for the series to come to Canada this month!
  • Dark Matter (Blake Crouch) – Wow. Just wow. This blew my mind. Some of the quantum physics stuff went right over my head, but wow. So good.

It’s my birthday!

It’s my Birthday today!

It’s my birthday and right now I’m on a plane coming home from vacation. I know, not the best way to celebrate, but it’s been a great trip. At least, I think it was because I’m writing this in advance of my big day. I’m sure I had a great time!

I’m very big on birthdays, for myself and others. Everyone needs a day to celebrate being you.

While I won’t go so far to reveal just what birthday this is for me, I do have a list to share.

I read a few lists on 50 Things to do before you’re 50. While that milestone is more than a few years away for me, I thought I’d make my own list.

Ten Things I’ve Learned in my 40s

  • I’ve accepted 40 isn’t as old as I once thought it was
  • How to say no/Refuse to feel obligated
  • Admit I’m okay with fewer friends, but they darn well better be good ones
  • Accept that irrational crushes are a good thing – and that I might have the same taste as my daughter!
  • Losing weight just got a whole lot harder!
  • Realize I often dress like I’m still in my 20s (comfy boho/grunge)
  • Realize I really can’t drink like I’m in my 20s anymore
  • To stop saying sorry for things I’m not responsible for
  • Not to argue with my children – discussions are okay but I am the parent here!
  • Pick your battles

While there’s still more for me to learn, I think I’m off to a good start. What about you? Got your own list to share?

 

Merry Kerr-ismas!! Happy Holly-days!!

My present to you –

Select books only 99 cents until December 27!

Looking to gift yourself something fun this Christmas? Check out Absinthe, Unexpecting or Charlotte Dodd – or all 3! Only 99p!!!

Merry Christmas to you from me!