Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Tears Like Rain by Connie Mason

Back Cover: The Maiden
As untamed as the prairie, as free as the wind, she hated what the white men were doing to the Cheyenne. But spirited Tears Like Rain risked her life to save a Calvary officer and make him her slave.
The Soldier
Although the Indians had beaten and stabbed Zach Mercer to the brink of death, the real torture didn't begin until Tears Like Rain rescued him. Never had Mercer ached so desperately for a woman who scorned him. Zach longed to make his beautiful virgin captor desire him as fiercely as she now despised him, but he wouldn't succeed until they both learned a different lesson: that only the bonds of love are unbreakable.
Review: When I first started reading romance Connie Mason was one of my auto buys, at one time I probably owned everything she had published. I went through a very strong Indian/Western romance phase and Mason was the Pooh! I recently ran across this book at my Mom's house and had an almost desperate desire to re-read it. I guess the 15+ years in between the first reading and the second reading served a good purpose... it was like I was reading it for the first time. I really had no recollection of the story; I had no idea what was coming with each turn of the page. Other than a few hang ups with the way some of the conversations sounded (and of course this could just be me) I really enjoyed this re-read. Tears Like Rain did get on my nerves a little, but I guess that is to be expected from a woman who does not trust the man or community that she is with. Mason did an excellent job weaving this story around true events that took place on the western front before the end of the Civil War. I might just have to search out Wind Rider, Tears Like Rain's brother, and continue reading this trilogy.
Rating: 4 stars
448 pages

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Language Barriers

After posting about my day in Paris I started thinking about the good time that my husband and I had. Yes the weather was awful, but it didn't hinder us- well not until we hit Barcelona, but that is a whole other story.

I took two years of French for my second language requirement in high school. That was 17 years ago!! OMG do I feel old now. It is pretty accurately said that I could not carry on a conversation nor understand most if spoken in French. I could pick up a word here or there and I could say thank you, please, yes, where is, how are you, hello and good bye. There may be a few other things but definitely not enough to really help in situations like the one I am about to share with you.

After leaving the Arc de Triomph we decided to head back to the hotel to take a nap and get out of the rain. We chose our hotel for its location... within walking distance of the Eiffel Tower, The Arc de Triomph and the Champs-Elysees, so we walked, and walked, and walked. We had walked ourselves to the point that our feet hurt, we were drenched, cold and ready to snap. Yes we had a map! Of course the street we were looking for was not on the map, but we knew the general area. I finally convinced my husband to stop so we could TRY and ask someone for help.

We go into the Pharmacy thinking, Ok I can only say a few things here hopefully this lady is like most that we have come in contact with and speaks English. No such luck !! Here I am trying to ask where is (which is very easy to say) our street... the street name was not easily pronounced, especially coming out with my strong southern accent. The lady was completely at a loss. Another costumer comes in who does speak English and between the three of us ladies, my husband wasn't touching this conversation with a 10 foot pole, we figured out the direction in which we needed to head.

I decided while we are here I might as well get some conditioner. The hotel only provided shampoo and it wasn't the 2 in 1, and after the last 2 days I my hair needed it. So here we go again! For some reason my mind went blank and I did not think to ask for "cream rinse", I asked for conditioner. This poor French lady was at a loss again. We went round and round trying to figure it out and all of a sudden the light came on... in her head not mine. She says "After Shampoo" , Yes Yes yes! That is what I need. She rings my bottle of After Shampoo up and we head out.

Hubby hits the sack as soon as we walk through the door. I am off to relax in a nice long HOT shower. Guess what comes next! The darn bottle of after shampoo was in fact SHAMPOO!!! I was sooo frustrated all I could do was laugh.

Now every time my husband sees a bottle of conditioner he calls it "After Shampoo"!

Lover Revealed by J R Ward

Rating: 5 stars
Published 2007
480 pages

Synopsis: Butch O'Neal is a fighter by nature. A hard-living ex-homicide cop, he's the only human ever to be allowed in the inner circle of the Black Dagger Brotherhood. And he wants to go even deeper into the vampire world-to engage in the turf war with the lessers. His heart belongs to a female vampire, Marissa, an aristocratic beauty who's way out of his league. And if he can't have her, then at least he can fight side by side with the Brothers.

But fate curses him with the very thing he wants. When Butch sacrifices himself to save a civilian vampire from the slayers, he falls prey to the darkest force in the war. Left for dead, he's found by a miracle, and the Brotherhood calls on Marissa to bring him back, though even her love may not be enough to save him.

Review: I am completely amazed! How do I do a review on this book, any of the BDB books, without putting in lots of spoilers. Who am I kidding with the fan base that this series has, I am probably one of the last people in the world to have started reading it.

Butch, the human cop, is feeling out of place and wants to help the Brotherhood more. He knows the battle against the Lessers is not his, yet he feels that he must help. When he happens to see a civilian getting chased down an alley by a couple of these slayers he jumps into Hero mode and tries to save the day. He winds up being tortured for information and lands in the hands of the Omega. Returned to the Brothers with something dark inside him, Butch is taken to the vampire clinic under strict quarantine.

Marissa knows something is not right when she sees a couple of the brothers leaving the vacinity of her brother's lab. Eventually she ends up in the room with Butch without proper protection. Everything comes to a head with her feelings for Butch and his for her. Concerned for her safety Butch pushes her away. Then Havers gives her the boot...what a great brother than one is!!!

There is a twist that comes in and new information is revealed, This Human is definitely not going anywhere!

I enjoyed Butch's story. Butch was so sweet and gentle with Marissa. I love how they finally came together.

Going to start Lover Unbound soon. I can't wait to read Vischous's story, it aught to very interesting!

For the first four books this is the order of my favorites:

1. Lover Awakened (book 3)

2. Lover Eternal (book 2)

3. Dark Lover (book 1)

4. Lover Revealed (book4)

None of the stories lacked in anyway, I just seem to be partial to Z and Rhage. From what I am hearing from everyone I am sure that V's story is going to be somewhere at the top. Can't wait!!

Zombie Chicken Award

CarpoolQueen (Beth) just gave me this award!! Thanks so much Beth!

This is what this award means.."The blogger who receives this award believes in the Tao of the zombie chicken - excellence, grace and persistence in all situations, even in the midst of a zombie apocalypse. These amazing bloggers regularly produce content so remarkable that their readers would brave a raving pack of zombie chickens just to be able to read their inspiring words. As a recipient of this world-renowned award, you now have the task of passing it on to at least 5 other worthy bloggers. Do not risk the wrath of the zombie chickens by choosing unwisely or not choosing at all..."I will pass this award along to ...

1. Barbara (
2. Heather (
3. Ms. M (
4. Kristi J (
5. Julie (

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


(pond next to the Eiffel Tower)

OK, I have finally gotten off of my lazy rear end and uploaded my pictures from my trip to Paris and Barcelona. I guess now the next logical step would be to share some of those pictures with my friends here.

(My DH's attempt to get both me and the Eiffel Tower- he didn't think to turn the camera sideways! lol)

My husband and I were only able to spend the day in Paris, which was only enough to wet the appetite. Revisiting Paris has now been put on our Bucket List. We spent the entire day walking in the 40 degree temp with biting wind and freezing rain. Our hotel was nice enough to allow us an extremely early check-in, we arrived at the hotel at 6 am, we ate breakfast and headed out. We were about 4 - 6 blocks away from the perfect viewing spot of the Eiffel tower, so that is where we headed first. It was beautiful, great photo opportunities. From this little area we walked down past a beautiful fountain and across the street and proceeded to stand in line for at least an hour waiting to go into the Eiffel Tower. Not even the rude tourists could take away my enjoyment from standing under it and looking up at all that steel in AWE. I chose only to go up as far as the second level, it was freezing outside!! I took several pictures, or should say attempted to, from that vantage point. The city was mesmerizing.

It doesn't matter where my husband and I go, we always opt to walk. There is just something to being able to experience a new city this way. Plus, it is always a great opportunity for us to get lost, literally! We got so turned around walking through all the little streets, every thing looked so very similar. The major streets jutted out from one center point, so you could end up going in circles and never really know it... happened to

(Arc de Triomph- taken from across the street on the corner of Champs-Elysees)
(under the Arc de Triomph)
We walked from the Eiffel Tower, with several detours, to the Arc de Triomph. Did you know that there is an under ground tunnel that allows you to access this monument without having to fight with crossing the busy streets? It reminded me of the part of the Davinci Code where they were running through tunnels, at least I think that was the movie I was thinking of. There are 284 stairs to the top. Yes, I actually paid 9 Euros a piece to walk up 284 stairs!! By the time I got to the top of the stairs I thought my legs were going to fall out from under me. This is where I wished that I had purchased that stair master last year instead of the gym membership that I don't use. At the top, we walk outside and get hit with rain that literally felt like ice and wind strong enough to make you feel like you were drunk, we ran around the top and took a couple of pictures.
(view from the top of Arc de Triomph)
Our plan from this point was to head back to the hotel, take a nap, grab some dinner and do it all over again to experience the city lights. However, our bodies and the weather had other plans. We did grab dinner at Victor Hugo Cafe, excellent food, but we were so exhausted from the day of travel, walking and battling the elements that we just headed back to our hotel and went to bed. We found out when we got back to the hotel that this was the day that all across the world they were turning the lights off to a lot of the tourist attractions (as well as other things) in observance of going Green.

I will post another day about our time in Barcelona. It was another beautiful city, but after spending the day in Paris it just didn't hold a candle. Maybe I was still tired, I don't know, but for some reason I just didn't get into wanting to sight see. I think our tour guide and some other couples from our group scared the crap out of me... all I could think about was making sure my purse was clamped to my side so that it didn't get stolen or pick pocketed.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Lover Awakened by J R Ward

Rating: 5 stars
Published 2006
464 pages
Lover Awakened is the third book in the Black Dagger Brotherhood. This was Zsadist's (Z) story. I love how J R Ward doesn't just give you one brother's story. You know who the story belongs to, but there is so much more given. She doesn't just tease you with glimpses, all the brothers get a significant amount of face time in these books.
Z is the most tortured brother. I say the most because I really think that all of them have their own little private hell that they are faced with, Tohr being the only exception to this point. In Lover Awakened you are privy to Z's private thoughts and memories; learning what he went through as a blood slave, how he was rescued, and how he survived. You see Z for the broken vampire that he is, understanding where the anger and isolation comes from. I loved watching Z grow in this book and really understanding what he was battling on the inside.
This series is really working on becoming the best one that I have ever read!!!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Lover Eternal by J. R Ward

Rating: 4.5 stars
pages: 464
Within the brotherhood, Rhage is the vampire with the strongest appetite. He's the best fighter, the quickest to act on his impulses, and the most voracious lover-for inside him burns a ferocious curse cast by the Scribe Virgin.
Possessed by this dark side, Rhage fears the times when his inner dragon is unleashed, making him a danger to everyone around him. When Mary Luce is unwittingly thrown into the vampire world, she must rely on Rhage's protection. Knowing that Mary feels the same intense animal attraction, Rhage must make her his alone...
This is the second book in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series. It took me a little while to get into this book. I don't know if it has to do with the months in between reading Dark Lover and starting this one, but I am so glad that I waited to read until I got all of the series. I have a feeling that I will be reading nothing but the BDB books.
Rhage was one of my favorites from the first book. I was intrigued by his demon. I wanted to know why it was there, if he would ever be rid of it, how it really affected (or is effected) him. I am completely in love again... I am sure I will fall in love with each brother as I read. Rhage did a complete turn around in his behavior after hearing Mary's voice. The tenderness and the protectiveness that he showed her was such a treat to read about. Then you have the very sick Mary, who has been through so much that has given her a strength that I don't think she even realized she had. In order to be together these two must over come some pretty big obstacles, breaking the rules and beating down self inflicted barriers.
In a way I feel like this book could have actually been the first book. It gave so much more information on each of the other brothers. You are able to get glimpses into each brother's history and start to understand the idiosyncrasies of each. You meet a potential new brother, John Matthew has not been through the change yet but he bares the mark of a warrior.
I was brought to tears a couple of times while reading this. I don't know if it because it is an emotional time or if it was the story itself, but I was definitely touched by the kindness Wellsie and Tohr showed this 20+ yr old orphan and John Michael's feelings while sitting at the dinner table. I thought I was going to have to undergo a round of ribbing from my husband for crying out loud when Mary received the information from the doctor and Rhage contacted the Scribe Virgin. I got so immersed in this story that I can't wait to read the rest of the books so I can't make sure that this HEA remains an HEA.
I'm off to start Lover Awakened!!
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