Sunday, June 21, 2015

Sunday Soup - June 21

In The Soup This Week... Alisha Rai, Katee Robert, Tiffany Reisz

Soup Dish:  on my mind
Not a lot of topical stuff for me this week, mostly just reading, reading, reading.  I do hope to kick off a series featuring the Reading Until Dawn conference and authors.  Look for that to debut on Thursdays.

What I'm reading
I guess it must be summer, because the majority of what I've been reading lately is hot, hot, hot.

I saw a passing deal for Alisha Rai's Glutton for Pleasure, and I really enjoyed it.  I don't normally go for twins in menage, so I'm kinda glad I didn't know that was the premise--this one managed not to squick me at all on that point, which is not a given.  The heroine has this perfect balance of sweet shyness, and yet sticks up for herself when it's important and doesn't take any nonsense from either of her partners. Also, I think there should be some sort of important industry award for the use of "turgid flesh" in the opening paragraph.

Katee Robert's Protecting Fate was also a total win. I've read a number of the kidnapped-for-her-own-protection tropes lately, and it's very rare that they work for me. This one was not a kidnapping, but it was still not exactly the heroine's preference. She did reluctantly agree to go along with escaping to a secure location, alone with a hunky bodyguard, and hijinks-- delightful, dirty hijinks-- ensue. This one hit all the right notes for me.

I downloaded Tiffany Reisz' The Virgin a little while ago, and finished it this past week. This series is just a super-reliable read for me -- always enjoyable. What I liked about this particular book is that some of the relationships that were originally presented as more or less easy-come, easy-go hookups gained a bit more emotional resonance in the flashbacks, and as a reader you start to understand how the characters have been shaped by all these experiences. I really liked it.

I finished up the Karina Bliss What the Librarian Did. Meh. It wasn't terrible, but I just didn't buy the characters and never found myself engaged.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Sunday Soup - June 14

In The Soup This Week... new authors, camping, and other random things

Soup Dish:  on my mind
Lightweight soup tonight; spent another weekend camping with my daughter and a few girls from her Scout troop.  So pretty.  So exhausting.

In book blogging meta, I quite liked what Jess Hearts has to say about book blogging and promo here. Simply stated and spot on.

I'm hugely entertained by Natalie's "Bad Life Decision" series, with live tweets and blog posts.  Good times start here

What I'm reading
wherein I take on some new authors
After I sent out my appeal for new author recommendations, it occurred to me that I have about 3 shelves full of mostly new-to-me authors as well as 3 thumb drives from RT14.  So while I will bear in mind the list I received, I'm going to work through a little bit of what I have first.  Up this week: Bound by Brenda Rothert.  I guess I'd peg this one as NA.  The hero is a hot, adorable Mary Sue and the heroine is a giant bag of mixed signals, which I was impatient with.  The emotional push-pull was realistic for the context, and I confess to sniffling a little at the end, so it was reasonably successful-- I think NA fans might like it a lot.  I'm not an NA fan per se and I thought it was just OK.

I'm almost finishes with a Karina Bliss title which is also not grabbing me too hard. It's a rock-star-falls-for-librarian thing and despite being highly recommended, I'm just not buying these characters.  Will it redeem itself in the last 7%? Seems unlikely.  Not terrible mind you; it just hasn't hooked me.

To make up for the lightweightness of this week's soup, here is a pretty photo from the weekend camping on the Olympic Peninsula:

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Sunday Soup - June 7

In The Soup This Week... RUDCon, Kit Rocha, Courtney Milan, Kevin Hearne, & JR Ward

Soup Dish:  on my mind
So the big blog news is the Reading Until Dawn Conference. I've agreed to be a featured blogger, which entails writing more posts than I usually do, and of a type that I usually do not (author interviews & features). So look for a bit of a flavor change here at Alpha Heroes between now and October as I do my best to fulfill the responsibilities of my new office. :D (and if you think you might be interested in the Con, please don't hesitate to hit me up in comments or email.)

Are you ready for summer yet?  Around here, school isn't out until June 19th, so even though we installed our window A/C unit yesterday (one does the job for our house in the Pacific Northwest), it's another two weeks before the schedules really change up.

Last camp-out of the school year - usually my troop does 2 camp-outs: an indoor "retreat" in the cold weather and then a big, multi-troop event sometime in March, April or May. This year, we got wind of another event that was already planned at a site that my daughter loves, so next weekend we're hopping on the coattails of someone else's planning effort. All I have to do is show up and not lose my 4 girls; no schlepping food or activities supplies or worrying about filling the time (Well, not much.  I have backups.  I am a control freak, after all).

What I'm reading
I've been reading like mad since the last Soup -- here are some highlights:
Beyond Innocence, by Kit Rocha.  I do love this series, and the latest installment does not disappoint.  I think it doesn't break a lot of new ground for the series, and it wouldn't be a great place to start, but if you're already a fan, it will be well worth your reading budget investment.  If you haven't tried the series yet, Beyond Shame is free right now, and the next couple in the series are nicely discounted.

Sweet Agony, by Charlotte Stein.  To be honest, this was a bit over-stylized for my tastes; a modern take on a classic gothic reclusive hero/poor housekeeper trope.  The hot scenes were very hot, though, and the angsty hero so very, very--VERY-- angsty, so while it wasn't a perfect hit for me, it will be just the ticket for folks who like things a bit more twisted than I do.

The Duchess War, by Courtney Milan. Oooooo, I loved this so much. It's free right now, and if you haven't read it, you should really really grab it. A duke who wants to do away with the peerage and a heroine with a secret identity-- just so brainy and rule-breaky and self-aware.  Love love loved it.

The Bourbon Kings (ARC), by JR Ward.  I'm mulling this one a bit. I liked it well enough, but it's a bit different than what I expected.  It's clearly a series set-up, and it's very, kinda, soap-opera-y.  Reads a bit more mainstream fiction than romance.  It has that BDB thing where there are lots of threads going, and while the hero/heroine are front and center, the romance doesn't feel like the main thread.  You'll see a full review on this one next month (honest!).

Trapped, by Kevin Hearne.  I'm pretty far behind in this series, but I'm enjoying my leisurely catch-up.  In this installment, Granuaile's induction continues, and (slight spoiler, I guess) she comes into her full Druidic powers, which I thought was the neatest part of the series development. Action-packed as usual, full of smart-alecky wisecracks as usual -- so yeah, pretty awesome.

Outlander Thoughts.

eeeeeee I've still been too chicken to watch the last couple of episodes.  I'm not 100% sure I'm going to... although I probably will.


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