Watch - Eat - Read

I watch a lot (but not on youtube) and I read a lot (and I also eat a lot...) that is about all you need to know. Oh and I like getting outside and hanging out with friends


Rebellion - John  Ling This was my first John Ling book. I was keen to read this as I grew up in New Zealand but have spent 12 years overseas so I liked the cross-cultural element. In regards to that element it was very well handled - there were a couple of references that I think were very much a nod to the New Zealand element "internalising a really complicated situation" anyone? This was a brief lightening of a really complex story that I very much enjoyed. I think I learnt quite a bit about different faiths too with the way the story unfolded.

I felt the writing was sharp and vivid and had a clarity of description that wasn't too flowery and kept pace with the quickly unfolding story. It was not the most complex of stories but it was told with a really clear voice and I would totally recommend this novel (though it is pretty short, but that has given me an appetite for more by the same author.

Tahoe Blues

Tahoe Blues - Aubree Lane Easy read and a fun little story. A bit slow in places but the descriptions are clear and interesting. I thought there were a few too many characters that were introduced and then ignored though

Secondhand Secrets (Miss Main Street #1)

Secondhand Secrets (Miss Main Street #1) - Angela C. Castillo light flowery and not very original. Nothing horrendous and if life is getting you down this is a nice little read. Unfortunately it is very predictable

Paris Ever After

Paris Ever After - K.S.R. Burns This was a well crafted read. It had a vivid explanation of the feeling of being an foreigner with a language barrier that I really liked. It might not be the style to everyone's tastes but I felt it had an authentic ring.

The relationships on the other hand were a bit stilted in parts which was sometimes part of the story but sometimes felt like they were forced and a little contrived.

Until I finished the story I did not know it was a sequel as the characters were very well crafted. I loved the small details in this easy read. I say it was an easy read but it was quite emotional in parts too.

The Unsuspecting Housewife

The Unsuspecting Housewife - Olivia Charles The style was quite static and not very descriptive for me. The way that the story unfolded left me feeling a bit like it was rushed. There were some gaps but all in all I liked the key character and read the whole thing to find out how it ended up the way it did.

I found the characters quite simplistic but to have fleshed all this out would have made an epic story so I understand why it was quite light on these features. I think the story was an interesting one and I was hooked on the simple nautre of what was happening and how it seemed to get worse and worse. I missed a final finale but given the way the story started I guess that was likely.

It was an easy read mostly but some of the financial/technical language lost me at parts

Nashville by Heart

Nashville by Heart - Tina Ann Forkner Good pace, good characters, nothing mind blowing

This is a tidy little story which is lovely if you like tidy little stories of living happily ever after. There are no shock, twists or sudden upsets. I liked this as I was expecting that from other reviews and it delivered a well written clear novel. I found the characters plausible and engaging. There were a bit simplistic but it suited the style well. This is not for the reader looking to be challenged but if you want some nice fluff to pick up and read in small breaks its ideal

Rev My Engine

Rev My Engine - Maggie Kane I don't know if I was expecting the high quality of the writing in this book. I have read a bunch of erotica that has varied in quality and skill. I was pleasantly surprised at this book. My only complaint would have to be how short it was. It really is a short story and might have worked better as part of a compilation rather than standalone. I was just getting into the story and it was all over.

I felt the descriptive writing was not too overblown and silly. Not too much use of "shaft/rod" jokes given he is a mechanic. I was surprised at how few characters were introduced but it kept it sharp just to focus on the couple. I recommend this for a cold wet afternoon or a stormy weekend :-)

I will definitely read more of Maggie Kane

Blue Bloods

Blue Bloods - Melissa  de la Cruz This was a good read - simple, clear and well crafted,

A Christmas Kerril

A Christmas Kerril - Denise Jaden Short sweet and well constructed - not too super sweet though. I enjoyed the simplicity of this story of a youth coming to terms with her past, her present and her future. It was not a cheesy story that was overly simplistic with buckets of Christmas-ness but more a reflection on the dramas of a teenager trying to come to terms with not loving her life or Christmas. The characters were a little brief in their descriptions but it was a short read that was easy going so it was fine. I liked that she had dramas but nothing too gritty. I liked the parallels with A Christmas Carol - it wasn't too heavy handed and it was a lovely read over the Christmas season.

Along Came a Spider

Along Came a Spider - James Patterson I was expecting good things from this as I had chosen specifically to go back to the beginning of the James Patterson craze. I had struggled (am still struggling) to get through a later James Patterson so this was me trying to kick off a writer I had not enjoyed in past.

I liked the book. A lot. It was a great summer read - light and quick moving. I am liking the main character which was the point of reading this book so I can get to know an evolving character (much like why I enjoy tv characters who develop over movie heroes who get one shot). Alex Cross is being carefully unveiled which I am enjoying.

Once I got used to the style which I liken to Stephen King in that the ideas are amazing but the descriptive language can be a bit boring at times. This doesn't make it hard to read it just makes it feel a bit like a teenager writing you a letter that they have just unloaded everything in their head rather than carefully chosen prose. It is however a snappy story and doesn't drag. Not entirely the ending I was expecting but not a disappointment at all. I would recommend this and I am now off to read "Kiss the Girls"

Getting Even

Getting Even - Sarah Rayner I enjoyed this simple and well written story. It was a good bunch of characters that were easy to relate to. I don't think this book is going to change the world but it was a nice distraction

To Drink of Deceit (The Maddie Morgan Mini-Mysteries Book 1)

To Drink of Deceit (The Maddie Morgan Mini-Mysteries Book 1) - Blythe Baker Light, easy, not much else to say

Starting Now

Starting Now - Debbie Macomber A warm and uplifting light read.

I enjoyed the style of this book but amusingly one of the only issues I had was with name confusion occasionally between similar named characters - a minor but worth mentioning issue.

I loved the range of characters and enjoyed the simple interactions. It was not a complex story but it didn't bill itself as such so a great well crafted read.

Fat Girl

Fat Girl - K.L. Montgomery I think I was the target market for this novel, right age, right body shape, right history and still it just did not wow me. It took longer to read than I expected and it was just missing the humour I hoped to find - just a bit too self deprecating for my tastes.

I thought the characters were good but not great - original but not weird but somehow it just didn't quite hang together for me. I don't know if it just read too much like a blog and less like a novel or I just wasn't quite "getting it"

I couldn't fault the writing. It moved along at a good pace and was descriptive enough but also didn't really wow me. I don't know if I can identify what was missing at all but it might just be that I am done with the reinvent/love genre for a bit. If you like the description and these sorts of stories I don't think this is a bad example but for me it didn't quite hit the spot. It might just be me though.

Leaving Eva (The Eva Series Book 1)

Leaving Eva (The Eva Series Book 1) - Jennifer Sivec This book is surprisingly gripping and blunt. I looked and the cover and description and thought it would be a much lighter read. It is written from a number of different perspectives and all of them ring with strong truths. The characters are sketchy but very consistent. I enjoyed the simplicity of the language and the descriptions were vivid without being overly wordy. I was surprised by how graphic and harsh the truths were in parts but overall it was a gripping read I would recommend to those with a thicker than average skin. This story doesn't pull its punches

The Girls

The Girls - Lisa Jewell This a another great delivery from a great writer. I really enjoyed the simplicity of the characters - there were so many they needed to be kept clear. I found it an easy read with a great storyline. The ending was probably the weak point for me but I think I could have continued to read about these characters for a long time and it may just have been the disappointment of it being over.

The story starts quite small with a new family in the neighbourhood but stretches over lots of individuals and situations and timeframes in the end. A great read I totally recommend. It does not delve as deep as you would like into a number of threads but to keep in contained is also a skill that is clearly shown in the end.

Currently reading

The Blasphemer
John Ling
The Perfect Girl: A Novel
Gilly MacMillan
The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here for?
Rick Warren
15th Affair
Maxine Paetro, James Patterson
Love on the Range: A Looking Glass Lake Prequel (Looking Glass Lake Series Book 0)
Rebecca Nightsong
Robot Coconut Trees: Break Through Writer's Block, Unleash Your Creative Voice, and Become the Writer You Already Are
Kelsey Horton
The Ocean at the End of the Lane: A Novel
Neil Gaiman, Neil Gaiman
One Summer In France
Bev Spicer
Two Are Better: Midlife Newlyweds Bicycle Coast to Coast
Tim Bishop;Debbie Bishop
The Misinterpretation of Tara Jupp
Eva Rice