jmc_bks: (Imperfect 2 by LJ Ase)
I'm alone for the first time in 10 days.  It's weird but nice.  I appreciate the great care I received from everyone, especially my mother, but feel a little relieved to be on my own.  Also, I'm glad Mom is going home to rest -- I feel like my illness was harder on her than me in many ways.

The review for K.A. Mitchell's new book, Bad Boyfriend, is in progress and will be posted over at WordPress later today has been posted at WordPress.  Once that's done, I'll settle down and address holiday cards -- I'd like to write personal notes rather than just sign the cards, but we'll see.  

Had to bail on the fic exchange because I knew it wouldn't be finished in time for the exchange due to health and timing issues, but I'm thinking that might be something to work on this afternoon, too, as a belated gift to the recipient (someone else is pinch hitting for the exchange) or to the comm generally.

I've been earwormed by Panic! once again, courtesy of [ profile] asimplechord's concert call from the secret acoustic show in Austin.

There's an email in my inbox about the Green Bay Packers' stock offering.  Back when I was a dead-broke student, they did their first offering in decades in order to raise money to improve Lambeau Field.  I desperately wanted to buy a share but at the time $200 was beyond me.  I could afford it now, but am feeling as if 1) any money spent on frivolous things right now should be for others rather than myself, and 2) since I just paid $400 to get my car fixed and am expecting to pay up to the deductible for my recent hospital stays, fiscal prudence is in order.  D:

There's also a Groupon in my inbox for The Economist -- $1 per issue (51 for the year), which is a huge bargain and a magazine that I find useful and instructive.  But I cancelled my subscription last year because I couldn't read them fast enough. Decisions. Hmmm.

jmc_bks: (meninas)
Coming soon:  a review of Hello Kitty Must Die by Angela S.Gina Choi.  In short: it was awesome.  Longer version later.

Check out Steve Tignor's love letter to Madrid.  Between that and FortyDeuce's tweets, I've been wishing I was in Madrid this week, enjoying the tennis and Retiro Park and stopping for a tart or sweet from La Mallorquina in the Puerta del Sol.

The Dairy Queen commercial for ice cream cakes for Mother's Day seriously squicks me -- it's the bubbles filled with kittens.  They remind me of a scene in Bujold's Cetaganda, in which that idiot Ivan plucks fruit from a kitten tree, only to realize that since it wasn't ripe, he'd essentially killed a fetal kitten.  Ick ick ick.  There's a lot of subtext and ethical undercurrents to the Cetagandan genetic manipulation and scientific experiments, but that image of a dead kitten made me ill when I first read it.  I have to skip that scene when I re-read the book.

Have I mentioned how much I like Panic's The Ballad of Mona Lisa?  Also, I have a ticket (via The Biochemist) for their show as part of the DC101 cook-off/festival at RFK in a couple of weeks...but it turns out I have a graduation party at the same time :(


Dec. 6th, 2010 08:25 pm
jmc_bks: (TDS)
It's Monday, and thus time for SBD.  But I've got nothing.  Spent all day talking -- doing training for new employees.  My voice is gone and my feet hurt.  So instead of the SBD, my dear readers (all 2 of you) get a whine.

And a plug -- K.A. Mitchell's Not Knowing Jack is out tomorrow!  So I'll have something for SBD next week.

And now I'm off to drink wine and eat chocolate.  Or maybe just to lapse into an exhausted sleep. 
jmc_bks: (Nadasco - 08 Spain Davis Cup)
My crush on Nathan Fillion grows ever larger.  Between the hammy reading of Richard Castle's book at Comic Con; the whole Mal Reynolds Firefly/Serenity thing and now this?  I'm all *hearteyes*.  Read this bit of information over at ALA's website and then tell me that he isn't a thousand times sexier for being a supporter of reading.

The first few chapters of Bujold's new Vorkosigan novel, CryoBurn, are available at Baen.  If the direct link doesn't work, click on the Webscription link at the top of the main Baen page, which will take you to CryoBurn's ARC page, where there is a link to the chapters.  I haven't read them yet, but am somewhat intrigued by the book summary.  Of course, it'll be an autobuy for me just because it's a new Miles book.

I ordered a case/cover for my refurbished Kindle (known as The Hairball, because for some reason my cat loves to lay on it, which leaves it covered in cat hair).  Anyway, it's been more than two weeks since I ordered it, so I poked the vendor.  Oh, sorry, busy.  Okay, but if it was going to be delayed, just say so; yes, you risk losing a sale, but with adjusted expectations, I would be much more inclined to leave positive feedback for you as a seller.

The Legg Mason Tennis Classic is on.  Have tickets to the Round of 16 on Thursday.  Don't need to go to the semifinals and finals on Saturday and Sunday, right?  Right?

Picnic at Mom's yesterday.  Her deviled eggs are the best ever.  Something about the ratio of bacon bits to relish to seasoning just rocks.  Nana's Chocolate Cake, too, yum.  And steamed crabs.  Brought some home and picked them this evening.  Crab cakes for dinner tomorrow :)
jmc_bks: (h's iris)
Check out the blurb for the next (last?) Miles Vorkosigan book, Cryoburn, over at Simon & Schuster's website.  (Via LMB's myspace RSS feed)

Query:  what relationship does Baen have with S&S?  I thought Baen was an independent publisher.  No?  Do they distribute/sell through S&S?
jmc_bks: (Forward momentum)
The TBR is huge, but I still look forward to adding to it! Here are some of the books I'm looking forward to in 2010. March, April, June and July look to be exceptional months for reading at Chez JMC.


Two January releases actually arrived on my doorstep in December, so I'm no longer looking forward to them.  [Scoundrel's Kiss by Carrie Lofty and Proof of Seduction by Courtney Milan] That leaves Seressia Glass's urban fantasy novel, Shadow Blade, to anticipate later this month.  I've read a couple of her older contemporary romances, and this new release has gotten some good buzz online.


Lessons in Seduction by Charlie Cochrane 

Sixth in the series, the Cambridge Fellows take a high profile case, investigating the death of the king’s ex-mistress.  There's no excerpt up yet, but the blurb is here.

I love the cover art for this series, btw.  The color tones and the consistency across books.  I believe the same artist has designed all six covers, but am too lazy to check the credits at the moment.


March is going to be a happy reading month for me, it seems!  Urban fantasy, YA adventure, gay romance and mystery.  Who could ask for anything more?

Roadkill by Rob Thurman
Cal & Niko are back! I sort of wondered if the series was over, since Thurman left the brothers in a semi-safe and comfortable place at the end of the last book, so I'm glad to be able to read more of their adventures.

The Dark Farewell by Josh Lanyon There's an excerpt up at Samhain, but no cover art yet. 

No Souvenirs by KA Mitchell 3/9/10 No cover art or excerpt, but description is here

A Conspiracy of Kings by Megan Whalen Turner 3/25/10
Sophos! Gen! Eddis! Attolia! At last!

Silver Borne by Patricia Briggs 3/30/10


Hell Fire by Ann Aguirre 
Book #2 of the Corine Solomon series

A Murderous Procession
by Ariana Franklin 
Book #3 of the Adelia Aguilar medieval forensic mystery series.

Tales of the Otherworld by Kelley Armstrong
Collection of novellas; have read early versions of some of them, when they were originally posted on Armstrong’s website. Looking forward to reading polished versions, along with additional new material.

Am feeling ambivalent about the next BDB book, which is supposed to be John Matthew’s. Haven't read Ward's angel spin off series, and am basically over the series, but may read this one (borrow from library? not paying hard back prices) to wrap up my reading of the series.


Magic Bleeds by Ilona Andrews 
Ignore the boobs that are about to pop out of the push up bra and impede Kate's swing; pretend there is no "sticker" on the bottom.  This book is going to be an adventure, I'm sure.


Marrying the Royal Marine by Carla Kelly 
There's no information available on this book yet, other that the generic page at Amazon, not even on the Harlequin Historicals page at But I'm thrilled to read more by Carla Kelly, and am assuming this is the final installment of her naval trilogy. Is it too early to be wondering what Ms. Kelly will be writing next?


Demon Blood by Meljean Brook
More Guardians!  Probably I should read Demon Forged before this comes out.  Seven months, plenty of time...

Tongues of Serpents by Naomi Novik 
No cover art yet, but some info about the setting of the book here.


The Iron Duke by Meljean Brook
There's no hard release date for this one yet, or cover art.  Am looking forward to Brooks' steampunk debut.


CryoBurn by Lois McMaster Bujold
This is the long awaited new Miles Vorkosigan novel.  TBH, I had sort of assumed that the Miles series was over, since it had been so long since Diplomatic Immunity.  Thrilled to learn otherwise :)  There is no cover art or blurb yet that I could find, and the only mention of a release date is at LMB’s website, not Baen Books. 
jmc_bks: (flaming june)
Beth's away in San Francisco, leaving us to our own devices for SBD.

I don't have anything to say about what I've read lately, other than to reiterate my irritation with typos and sloppy copyediting. (See below for a recent tally.)

What I do have is a list of December ebook releases that I'm awaiting impatiently. Paper books? Eh. When I skimmed a list of December releases, nothing really jumped out at me except the reissue of an old Victoria Holt romance.

On my e-TBB list:
December 1: An Improper Holiday by K.A. Mitchell, a historical holiday novella. Summary and excerpt available here.
December 15: Lessons in Temptation by Charlie Cochrane, fifth Cambridge Fellows mystery.
December 22: The Dark Tide by Josh Lanyon, the fifth (and final) Adrien English mystery. There's no "coming soon" page yet, but an unedited excerpt is available here.
December 22: The Cadaver Client by Frank Tuttle. Book 4 of the Markhat Files. Probably I should read books 2 and 3 before book 4 is released. The first book of the series, Dead Man's Rain, was a free Kindle book and got me hooked.

The running list of blatant typos/copyediting misses in last read -- yes, all from one book!
  • Waive and wave are not interchangeable.
  • Same for human and humane.
  • Diffuse and defuse not only do NOT sound the same, they have completely different meanings.
  • One may be a nervous wreck, not a nervous wreak.
  • There is no such thing as peppercini; there is peperoncini.
  • They probably tried to help the slower kid, not "they tired to help".
  • A baby doll tee is not the same as a halter top; having a character wear one at the beginning of the scene but the other at the end would only make sense if she changed clothing during the scene. But she didn't.

Sentence that I read and loved in my current read: His hair was a marvelous haystack of auburn and orange. (A.M. Riley's The Elegant Corpse.)
jmc_bks: (flaming june)
I just realized that a book I pre-ordered based on author alone (an author whose voice I really like) has a heroine who is a con artist and a hero who is an assassin.  And the book begins with her as his target because of her relationship/tangling with a mobster.

I dunno.  I've posted already that I have a problem with criminal behavior from main characters.  In the past, okay.  Ongoing on the page, not so much.  I'm not sure if I want to read this book now, no matter how well-received and well-reviewed it has been.
jmc_bks: (star fort kinsale)
Fans of Megan Whalen Turner's Thief series have been waiting for the fourth book of the series patiently. (Mostly.) It has been three and a half years since The King of Attolia was released. What happened to Sophos? What will happen with the Medes? Is Eddis going to give in to the pressure to wed Sounis in order to secure the stability of the region?

In late winter/early spring next year, readers will find out the answers to some (likely not all) of their questions. Or so says Amazon Canada. Amazon US doesn't have any information, nor does Barnes&Noble or even HarperCollins, MWT's publisher. Or MWT's website (which, frankly, is not very user-friendly, IMO).

And from the 2009 HarperCollins Foreign Rights catalog at the Bologna Book Fair:

A CONSPIRACY OF KINGS by Megan Whalen Turner
Ages 10 and up, 400 pp, Pub 4/2010

Sophos, heir to the throne [of Sounis] has never wanted to be a prince, much less a king. He would rather continue his studies than learn swordplay or combat. But Sophos is his uncle's only heir, so he has no choice -- until he is kidnapped.

Sold into slavery, set to work building walls on the estate of one of his uncle's enemies, Sophos could remain anonymous for the rest of his life. But his country would crumble under the mounting conspiracy, and Sophos realizes that he cannot abandon his people. So he fights back. Battling his way out of slavery, battling through the conspirators' army, Sophos turns to the only person he knows will help him. His friend -- Eugenides, former Thief of Eddis and now king of Attolia.

An exhilarating companion to Megan Whalen Turner's lauded The Thief, The Queen of Attolia, and The King of Attolia, A Conspiracy of Kings is an action-packed, heart-stopping adventure. Finally, longime fans will discover what happened to Sophos while Eugenides was winning his throne and the queen of Attolia's heart. Old and new fans alike will be left breathless by the battles of sword and wit that the two friends mount against the traitors, in which nothing is what it seems. Sophos, the shy, dreamy scholar, is no longer someone to be disdained or overlooked. He is a force to be reckoned with. He is a king.

Megan Whalen Turner is the author of the three previous books in the Attolia sequence, Newbery Honor book The Thief, The Queen of Attolia, and ALA Notable The King of Attolia. She has also written a collection of short stories called Instead of Three Wishes.

Courtesy of the [info]sounis community.

jmc_bks: (flaming june)
Okay, I'm putting up a placeholder post. I've read several books that I want to comment on, although probably not in a full review format. *snort* When was the last time I did a thoughtful, carefully drafted review? Ages ago, mostly I've been doing drivebys. Anyway, if I put up a placeholder, I'm more likely to actually write something. Otherwise more time will pass and I'll never post about these books.

The books are:

Silent in the Sanctuary by Deanna Raybourn
Second book of the Lady Julia Grey Victorian-set mystery series. Found pieces of Julia to be very contradictory, which may just point to her humanity. The mystery was predictable; set up of the red herring didn't work for me (mechanically). More interested in the characters than the plot.

SEALed with a Kiss by Mary Margaret Daughtridge
DNF. I don't care how courageous the hero was in his profession, he came across as an emotional coward who couldn't be arsed to work at any relationship in his life. Which made it hard for me to believe that there would be any HEA. Plus, the heroine's name was misspelled. Plus, the heroine was a family therapist who couldn't manage to deal with her own family dysfunction. I guess the adage about cobblers' children going barefoot applies here.

The Italian's [some adjective] Mistress by India Grey
Debut. Typo-free, which seems common for HP. Hate hate hated huge chunks of this book, but love love loved other parts of it.

Dolphin Dreams by Jules Jones
Impressed by this book, though squicked at the end -- but that is more a personal taste issue. Addressed things in paranormal romance or fantasy that often slips by the wayside.

New books?

Mar. 12th, 2008 09:34 am
jmc_bks: (daffs)
Laura Lippman's new Tess Monaghan mystery,  Another Thing to Fall, has been released.    eBookwise has it classified as a romance, which seems odd.  <shrug>

 And Brockmann's next book, Into the Fire,  is going to feature Vinh Murphy.  Woo hoo!  (I do wonder, though, if Jazz Jacquette will ever get a story, since he's been around since the beginning of the series.)
jmc_bks: (Default)

Carla Kelly has posted that she has a naval trilogy coming out late this coming fall/winter.

I suppose the fact that I've already noted it in my planner  (plus my flailing and happy dance) give away my fan-girliness when it comes to Carla Kelly.

jmc_bks: (Stupid)
According to a letter to the editor in the November issue of the Romantic Times Book Review magazine, paranormals are vulgar and low class.  Because heroines use the "f-word", the books have graphic love scenes, and the h/h use "vulgar, low-class words to describe various body parts."

Well, color me as vulgar and low-class then, because I would much prefer to read a love scene that involves a pussy and a cock that one between a throbbing manhood and a gentle flower.  Gah! 

Other random thoughts I had while paging through the copy at the library:

LKH's A Lick of Frost is urban fantasy?  Why not just call it the porn that it is?  The reviewer gave it a 2 ("problematic, may struggle to finish"), which is amazing, since the average grade seems to be a 4 ("compelling, a page turner").

Rhett Butler's People is due out next month.  I'd managed to erase the thought of it from my mind.  Some sequels should never be written, and that is one of them.  I don't care how great the book may be, telling the story from Rhett's POV removes all the mystery from him; and that was a huge part of his draw both for Scarlett and for (some) readers.

jmc_bks: (Baseball)

I'm waiting impatiently for Brockmann's novella, All Through the Night.  She's posted a link to an audio excerpt of it, read by Michael Holland.  He sounds much more like the Jules in my head than Force of Nature narrator.  There's a second audio excerpt available at Michelle Buonofiglio's Romance B(u)y the Book, too.

Baseball season is over for Balmer.  It was a slow, ugly crawl to the finish.  Went to yesterday's game, which was just bad.  Let me put this in perspective for non-fans:  we left after 6 innings.  I'd NEVER left an O's game before the ninth inning before yesterday.  I've sat through rain delays (hello, I was there for Eddie Murray's historic HR after two rain delays at nearly midnight).  It was just ugly.  Pitching by committee, they couldn't get even the Pin-Stripped second string out.  

Parking is at a premium in my neighborhood now that the apartment building down the street is nearing capacity -- the residents don't want to pay to park in "their" lot, so they park on the street.  Technically under the city code, a car can be ticketed and towed after it has been parked for 2 days without moving.  That seems a little short to me.  Most of my neighbors use their cars a couple of times a week, which is fine.   We all know each other's vehicles and have unassigned but customary parking spots.   A car has been parked in front of my house for two weeks without moving.  It's not mine, nor does it belong to my neighbors.  [I've asked.  I've also left a note, asking that they correct the heinous parking job --  they are taking up two parking spots because of how they parked.  The note hasn't moved in three days.]  I'm contemplating calling the city's parking services and having it towed.  Same thing for the Saturn across the street that hasn't been moved in two months.  Rude? 

jmc_bks: (Stupid)
According to the weekly e-bulletin at the office, next week is National Resurrect Romance Week. I'm not sure what the genesis of this is, or if it is supposed to be literal or what. But the idea is kinda cool, I think.

Gail Dayton's wrap up of her fantasy trilogy, The Eternal Rose, is slated for release next month. I hadn't seen any pre-release advertising, so I'm wondering what the publisher's expectations are for sales. The first two books (The Compass Rose and The Barbed Rose) were published by Harlequin's Luna imprint, but this one is being published by Juno, an indpendent publisher. Looks like Juno used the same cover artist, or at least the same fonts, which is good for some continuity of presentation. Has anyone else seen any marketing for this book? Or have most of Dayton's readers withered away in the year and a half since the release of the last book.

Paranormals are everywhere. Shari Shattuck, writer of straight suspense (try her Calloway Wilde mysteries), has switch publishers (Pocket to Signet), formats (tpb to mmp), and genres with Eye of the Beholder, which features a psychic heroine.
jmc_bks: (seagull)
Well, The Bourne Ultimatum doesn't break any new ground in acting or filmography, but it was a very fast, slick action movie. Two thumbs up from me.

The trailers were pretty well matched to the movie, too. Two Russell Crowe movies (one western, one mob/cop movie in which Denzel Washington stars); a military/spy thriller with Jamie Foxx, Chris Cooper and Jennifer Garner (memorable to me b/c Kyle Chandler looks to have a bit part); and a political/action thriller with Tom Cruise as a smarmy politician who is all about winning the WoT at all costs, with Robert Redford (prof) and Meryl Streep (reporter) as his foils and/or dupes. ETA: Forgot! Also saw the preview for Gone Baby Gone, the kipnap/corruption movie based on Dennis Lehane's book; it's the directing debut of Ben Affleck starring Casey Affleck. Looks like I have more to say about the trailers than the movie. Not true really, but I don't want to give spoilers.

And apparently I'm not the only person to wonder about the Ludlum continuation. Check out the NYT's piece on The Ludlum Conundrum (login required, but it's free). Courtesy of Galley Cat.

I saw that the anthology of paranormal novellas that Patricia Briggs participated in is out. :sigh: I'm not spending $7.99 for one story. Also saw the new Rachel Gibson and Keri Arthur books on the shelves.
jmc_bks: (star fort kinsale)
I finished reading P.B. Ryan's Murder in the North End with very mixed feelings, mostly because of the way she left her protagonists, Nell Sweeney and Will Hewitt. Checking Amazon today, I saw that the next book of the series, Bucket of Ashes will be released in December. Woo hoo! I would find out if I was right in my guesses. So I googled Ms. Ryan and found that she has a website. Click here or here for information about the last book of the Nell Sweeney Guilded Age mystery series.

And, hah! I guessed correctly!
jmc_bks: (Chocolate)
My reading definitely trailed off this month. )

Went to Borders yesterday and flipped through a bunch of books, leaving with several including: a travel guide bought in anticipation of my vacation in September; a copy of The Bermudez Triangle, which I probably wouldn't've picked up if I hadn't read something at Media Bistro last week about homophobic parents trying to get it banned from school libraries; a copy of Eva Ibbotson's The Countess Under the Stairs; and Michelle Styles' The Roman's Virgin Mistress. Yep, that title makes me cringe. It's my first read for July, though, and I have a sort-of review percolating.
jmc_bks: (TCR Word WTH)
My SBD post took several tries to post. And I can't reply to any of the comments posted in the last day, dammit.

Instead I'll post here: Yay! ::happy dance:: And thank you to Meljean Brook, 'cause I won her contest.

I also won (last week and I forgot to post about it, bad jmc) a contest over at Bam's -- a copy of Annie Dean's ebook, The Average Girl's Guide to Getting Laid. Once I've finished reading it, I'll post a review or maybe just an opinion.

So, since I've been all win-ny lately, I'll share the love. I have a duplicate copy of Meljean Brook's Demon Moon due to order impatience/forgetfulness. Pick a number between 1 and 50 and post it in the comments (along with contact info if you don't have a blog or LJ) in the next 48 hours. The first person to hit the number or get closest gets my spare copy.
jmc_bks: (McCain 08)
For any Brockmann fans who happen by: check out Romance By the Blog for a brief interview and a link to the excerpt from Brockmann's August release, Force of Nature. Hint about the excerpt's content: your favorite gay FBI agent appears. Question: does Jules get his HEA here? Or is that going to be a separate book?

Only bad thing: in the comments Brockmann says that there is no time line for finishing her Hqn SEAL series. It has been years since the last one was released. And I'm interested in seeing what happens with Thomas and Tasha, dammit. But her old Loveswepts are all being reprinted, so anyone who hasn't read her early, early stuff will be able to get a hold of it at non-ruinous prices.

I succumb to cattiness, so I'm hiding it behind a text cut. )

Rambles about what I bought and didn't buy at the bookstore today. )

Because I seem unable to post anything lately without some sort of political commentary: Um, does the White House really think that a military presence in the Middle East could ever possibly be like the US presence in Korea? Does no one in the White House understand that the US presence in Korea has not necessarily been a good thing for North and South Korea (while it has been a boon for the military industries in the US) or even the rest of Asia? And even if one disregards that, that the Middle East and Korea are two utterly different situations?


jmc_bks: (Default)

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