Friday, March 29, 2013

Coming Up...Week 13 of 2013

Books to be reviewed:

Part I of Chronicles of the Crusades by Jean de Joinville, Geoffroi de Villehardouin

The two famous Old French chronicles in this volume were composed by soldiers who took part in the Holy Wars. Villehardouin's Conquest of Constantinople is the first trustworthy and fully informed history of the Crusades. Distinguished by its simplicity and lucidity, it is an account of the Fourth Crusade, which ironically ended as a war against the Eastern Christians of the Orthodox Church. Joinville's Life of Saint Louis was inspired by the author's close attachment to the pious king and provides a vivid picture of his times and the ways of life in the East.







What I'm Reading now:

Bruce and the Road to Courage-Gale Leach

Bruce, a young caterpillar who is afraid of heights, doesn’t want to become a butterfly. Tired of being teased and bullied about this, he leaves home, unaware that he has embarked on a heroic journey that will test both his character and his courage.

Through a series of perilous adventures, Bruce discovers that standing up for yourself and doing what you know is right, even in the face of great odds, are the most courageous actions of all.

 Chapters: 4 out of 27

 Pages: 19 out of 110 (e-reader)




Letters from your future; reaching for your highest potential in times of great change by Brett L Bowden

Dear Ones,

We have been sending Humanity instructional letters for some time now. the Letters, collectively known as The Letters Project, started in 2007 and will continue until Humanity has reached its full potential and it is deemed that they will no longer be needed. These Letters are instructions about life and hwo life works from teh perspective of the Spiritual Realm in which we reside.

We go by many names for there are many of us here who want to communicate these truths to you. We work through the spiritual energy named Jaipur and are collectively known to this channel as The Counsel of Divine Wisdom. We are energies that reside in teh upper realms of existence. In your modern day temrs you might say that we are Ascended Masters although that term you use has restrictions, but it will suffice for htese purposes.

It is our intent to show you a new way, another way for Humanity to exist. Indeed, if you are pleased with what you see and feel around you, then this message will have no meaning for you. However, if youa re not pleased with the present condition in which you perceive your world, then you now have a golden opportunity to change it. You can do this by changing your perception of what you see around you and in doing this you will begin to change your life, your world and yourself.

Where will your road take you? Go inside yourself and seek the insights of your soul in hte silent moments. It will know the way.

The world of your highest imaginings is within your reach.

Progress: 163 out of 265 pages, 23 out of 40 chapters plus introduction and epilogue and preface

A Gospel of Kama Sutra by Poonaam Uppal

"So, do you believe in love?" Someone asked me once, and I replied, "I feel, I am here, in this world, just to teach teh world, "love" and "The ritual of love making," the essence of true love and how to create "Holy Kama Sutra." -Poonaam Uppal

THis is a true love story of glamorous, stylish and fiercely ambitious Indian lass Moh Lal Rai who has only one cherished desire, aspiration n her mind to become an internationally acclaimed avant-garde Fashion designer. Destiny deceives Moh's desires landing her in US. During her fashion show at Las Vegas she experiences violent vibration followed by a thunderous broadcasting of her future "soon in 1997 you will meet your true eternal lover" on this earth...

Dragooned by powerful longing to meet her ancient lover she is now a solitary traveler of an abyss of unfathomable space and time where she is sent on a roller coaster ride to a bizarre realm of gonzo occurrences, happenings, visions, premonitions, deja vous, diving visitation and startling revelation of her past birth and she involuntarily unravels the anciet most secret of the extinct art of Kama Sutra and "Tantric Sex" once taught by Lord Shiva himself but now these cryptic writings are shrouded in the misty Himalayan valley. In a cruel game plan of higher she is compelled by a powerful goddess to become a saint a Guru, a Love Messiah and reveal the lost mystical secret behind Kama Sutra___Kama Sutra is the holiest of scripture and only through Kama Sutra human could reach nirvana in this climaxing Black Age. "This is a true love story only the names and places are fictitious."

Progress 359 out of 1084 pages, 33 out of 92 chapters

Darn Good Eats: The Cookbook for Creative Chefs and Reluctant Cooks-Jodi Ambrose

Whether you love to cook or would rather starve than spend time in a kitchen, Darn Good Eats: The Cookbook for Creative Chefs and Reluctant Cooks is for you!

Reluctant Cook and author Jodi Ambrose teamed up with her Creative Chef husband, Grant, to bring you a cookbook with an unusual twist. Darn Good Eats provides scrumptious recipes for both the kitchen aficionado and the bumbling cook. Pooling together all of their combined kitchen savvy, they've created a cookbook that applies to anyone and everyone.

Along with a list of must-have items for your kitchen, helpful measurement conversions, delightful personal anecdotes and a witty sense of humor, this cookbook delivers over 70 delectable and inspired recipes for both the kitchen novice and cooking expert. You no longer have to be a good cook to make great food.

So that it's easy to navigate, the cookbook is split into two parts. The first part is for Creative Chefs who love, or at least like, to cook. It contains tantalizing recipes which range from simple to challenging and are bound to be crowd-pleasers. The second part is for people who prefer eating over cooking and find the kitchen to be more of a chore than a delight. The Reluctant Cook will now have a wonderful array of options for making "homemade" meals that (shhh...don't tell) in some cases are far from homemade, but are still mouthwateringly delicious.

Whether you love or hate the kitchen, Darn Good Eats: The Cookbook for Creative Chefs and Reluctant Cooks has plenty of tasty recipes to please even the most discerning palate. We know that you'll enjoy both the food and fun contained within this cookbook and we wish for you many happy and delicious meals.

Chapters: 12 out of 71 recipes plus introduction, Dragon-Breath-o-Meter, List of things you'll need, For those who love to cook, for those who hate to cook, weight and measures, in conclusion

Pages:  43 out of 200

Doctor Zhivago- Boris Pasternak

This epic tale about the effects of the Russian Revolution and its aftermath on a bourgeois family was not published in the Soviet Union until 1987. One of the results of its publication in the West was Pasternak's complete rejection by Soviet authorities; when he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1958 he was compelled to decline it. The book quickly became an international best-seller.

Dr. Yury Zhivago, Pasternak's alter ego, is a poet, philosopher, and physician whose life is disrupted by the war and by his love for Lara, the wife of a revolutionary. His artistic nature makes him vulnerable to the brutality and harshness of the Bolsheviks. The poems he writes constitute some of the most beautiful writing in the novel.

Chapters: 2 out of 17

Pages: 21 out of 456

The Awakening and Selected Short Fiction- Kate Chopin

When it first appeared in 1899, Kate Chopin’s The Awakening was greeted with cries of outrage. The novel’s frank portrayal of a woman’s emotional, intellectual, and sexual awakening shocked the sensibilities of the time and destroyed the author’s reputation and career. Many years passed before this short, pioneering work was recognized as a major achievement in American literature.

Set in and around New Orleans, The Awakening tells the story of Edna Pontellier, a young wife and mother who, determined to control her own life, flouts convention by moving out of her husband’s house, having an adulterous affair, and becoming an artist.

Beautifully written, with sensuous imagery and vivid local descriptions, The Awakening has lost none of its power to provoke and inspire. Additionally, this edition includes thirteen of Kate Chopin’s magnificent short stories.
Stories Included in the Volume:
The Awakening
Emancipation: A Life Fable
A Shameful Affair
At the ‘Cadian Ball
Désirée’s Baby
A Gentleman of Bayou Têche
A Respectable Woman
The Story of an Hour
Athénaïse
A Pair of Silk Stockings
Elizabeth Stock’s One Story
The Storm
The Godmother
A Little Country Girl

 Chapters: 2 out of 39 plus 13 short stories

Pages: 6 out of 288

Nobody But Us-Kristin Halbrook

Will

Maybe I'm too late. Maybe Zoe's dad stole all her fifteen years and taught her to be scared. I'll undo it. Help her learn to be strong again, and brave. Not that I'm any kind of example, but we can learn together.

When the whole world is after you, sometimes it seems like you can't run fast enough.

Zoe

Maybe it'll take Will years to come to terms with being abandoned. Maybe it'll take forever. I'll stay with him no matter how long it takes to prove that people don't always leave, don't always give up on you.

Chapters: 15 out of 60?

Pages: 96 out of 288

Destiny, Rewritten- Kathryn Fitzmaurice

Des·tin·y: |destinē/
(noun) The hidden power believed to control what will happen in the future; fate.

Eleven-year-old Emily Elizabeth Davis has been told for her entire life that her destiny is to become a poet, just like her famous namesake, Emily Dickinson. But Emily doesn’t even really like poetry, and she has a secret career ambition that she suspects her English-professor mother will frown on. Then a seeming tragedy strikes: just after discovering that it contains an important family secret, she accidentally loses the special copy of Emily Dickinson’s poetry that was given to her at birth. As Emily and her friends search for the lost book in used bookstores and thrift shops all across town, Emily’s understanding of destiny begins to unravel and then rewrite itself in a marvelous new way.

In her third novel, Kathryn Fitzmaurice again weaves a richly textured and delightful story about unexpected connections, about the ways that friends can help us see ourselves for who we truly are, and about the most perfect kinds of happy endings: those that happen just on time.

Chapters: 11 out of 63

Pages: 76 out of 335

The Secret Garden-Frances Hodgson Burnett

Mistress Mary is quite contrary until she helps her garden grow. Along the way, she manages to cure her sickly cousin Colin, who is every bit as imperious as she. These two are sullen little peas in a pod, closed up in a gloomy old manor on the Yorkshire moors of England, until a locked-up garden captures their imaginations and puts the blush of a wild rose in their cheeks; "It was the sweetest, most mysterious-looking place any one could imagine. The high walls which shut it in were covered with the leafless stems of roses which were so thick, that they matted together.... 'No wonder it is still,' Mary whispered. 'I am the first person who has spoken here for ten years.'" As new life sprouts from the earth, Mary and Colin's sour natures begin to sweeten. For anyone who has ever felt afraid to live and love, The Secret Garden's portrayal of reawakening spirits will thrill and rejuvenate. Frances Hodgson Burnett creates characters so strong and distinct, young readers continue to identify with them even 85 years after they were conceived. (Ages 9 to 12)

Chapters: 8 out of 27

Pages: 69 out of 288

Stop me if you've heard this one before- David Yoo

If Albert Kim has learned one thing in his tragic adolescence, it's that God (probably a sadistic teenaged alien) does not want him to succeed at Bern High. By the end of sophomore year, Al is so tired of humiliation that he's chosen to just forget girls and high school society in general, and enjoy the Zen-like detachment that comes from being an "intentional" loser.

Then he meets Mia Stone, and all the repressed hormones come flooding back. Mia, his co-worker at the Bern Inn, is adorable, popular, and most intimidatingly, the ex- long-term girlfriend of Ivy-bound, muscle-bound king of BHS and world class jerk, Ryan Stackhouse. But -- chalk it up to the magic of Al's inner beauty -- by the end of a summer vacuuming hotel rooms and goofing off together, he and Mia are officially "something."

Albert barely has time to ponder this miracle before the bomb drops: Ryan has been diagnosed with cancer, and he needs Mia's support, i.e. constant companionship. True, he's lost weight and he's getting radiation, but that doesn't make him any less of a jerk. And to Albert, it couldn't be more apparent that Ryan is using his cancer to steal Mia back. With the whole town rallying behind Ryan like he's a fallen hero, and Mia emotionally confused and worried for Ryan, Al's bid for love is not a popular campaign. In fact, it's exactly like driving the wrong way on a five-lane highway.

In this desperately funny novel, David Yoo tells an authentic story of first love, and therein captures the agony, the mania, the kicking and screaming that define teenage existence.

Pages: 288 out of 374

Chapters: 39 out of 48

Future Books I will read:

Trust: Betrayed (Trust #2 (Ebook)) by Cristiane Serruya

Alistair Connor MacCraig, a powerful banker, and Ethan Ashford, a steel tycoon, are both in love with Sophia Leibowitz, the ravishing owner of Leibowitz Oil.
Sophia fells for Alistair's seduction. She is determined to have a relationship with him but a dark and terrible secret lurks beneath the surface she presents to the world. When she regains her memories, shame and fear will take control of her. Will she be able to find peace within herself?
Alistair is in love with Sophia but he has difficulties overcoming his guilty over his daughter's death and his sexual preferences. Certain that he doesn't deserve to be loved, he would do everything to push Sophia away, despite his love for her. Will he be able to find redemption?
Ethan, no less haunted by his secrets and lies, lives in an alternate reality because the loss of Sophia is too unbearable to face. He would do everything to have Sophia back in his arms.

In BETRAYED, the second installment of the Trust series, Sophia, Ethan and Alistair will face and revisit their past dark deeds.
Each one of them will need to overcome their guilt, fear and pain and learn to see themselves through forgiving eyes.
Or succumb to their misery.

Chapters: N/A

Pages: N/A

Vanguard of Hope: (Sapphire Brigade Book 1 (ebook)) by Kathy Steinemann 

LISETVILLE, 1890 -- Murders are committed; homes are burned; family secrets are buried; an unexpected romance complicates lives. Amid the mystery and violence, a vigilante brigade emerges to administer justice.

Flowing through the intrigue and drama is a dark undercurrent that will touch your heart as you empathize with the victims.

Chapters: 13 Parts? Plus prologue and epilogue

Pages: 329




Chronicles by Froissart

Froissart (1337-1410), sometimes described as the historian of the Hundred Years' War, was one of the first great journalists.

His Chronicles reveal the same curiosity about character and customs which underlies the works of his contemporary, Chaucer. This selection depicts a panorama of Europe during the great age of Anglo-French rivalry, from the deposition of Edward II to the downfall of Richard II, Froissart's famous descriptions of chivalry in action at Sluy's, Crecy, Calais and Poitiers are only part of a comprehensive court's-eye-view of society which embraces trading activities, diplomacy and the Peasants' Revolt.

Pages: 471

Chapters: around 60?

The Last Outlaws; The Lives and Legends of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid by Thom Hatch

The Old West was coming to an end.Two legendary outlaws refused to go with it. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid—as leaders of the Wild Bunch, they planned and executed the most daring bank and train robberies of the day, with a professionalism never before seen by authorities. For several years at the end of the 1890s, the two friends, along with a revolving cast who made up their band of thieves, eluded local law enforcement and bounty hunters, all while stealing from the rich bankers and eastern railroad corporations who exploited western land. The close calls were many, but Butch and Sundance always managed to escape to rob again another day—that is, until they rode headlong into the 20th century. Fenced-in range, telephone lines, electric lights, and new crime-fighting techniques were quickly rendering obsolete the outlaws of the wide open frontier. Knowing their time was up, Butch and Sundance, along with a mysterious beauty named Etta Place, headed to South America, vowing to leave their criminal careers behind. But riding the trails of Chile, Argentina and Bolivia, Butch and Sundance would find that crime wasn’t through with them just yet. In The Last Outlaws, Thom Hatch brings these memorable characters to life like never before: Butch, the brains of the outfit; Sundance, the man of action; and the men on both sides of the law whom they fought with and against. From their early holdup attempts to that fateful day in Bolivia, author Thom hatch draws on a wealth of fresh research to go beyond the myth and provide a compelling new look at these legends of the Wild West.

Chapters: 14 plus prologue

Pages: 255

The Castilian Suite- Graham Blackburn

In 1961 Generalíssimo Franco is still dictator of Spain and Roger Coulter is on his way to Madrid with the beauiful Sarah to write ‘The Castilian Suite’. Youthful enthusiasm is no match for the harsh realities of life, however, and composing gives way to a hand-to-mouth existence of scalping tickets to the bullfight, pimping in the Barrio Chino, and an eventual return to a life of rowdy gigs in West Indian and Irish bars in London. Tragedy ensues in New York, followed by corruption in Los Angeles before Roger Coulter can return to his dream.

Chapters: 29 plus translations

Pages: 402



The Best of All Possible Worlds-Karen Lord

A proud and reserved alien society finds its homeland destroyed in an unprovoked act of aggression, and the survivors have no choice but to reach out to the indigenous humanoids of their adopted world, to whom they are distantly related. They wish to preserve their cherished way of life but come to discover that in order to preserve their culture, they may have to change it forever.

Now a man and a woman from these two clashing societies must work together to save this vanishing race—and end up uncovering ancient mysteries with far-reaching ramifications. As their mission hangs in the balance, this unlikely team—one cool and cerebral, the other fiery and impulsive—just may find in each other their own destinies . . . and a force that transcends all.

Chapters: 16

Pages: 303

01. In the Prince's Bed by Sabrina Jeffries

From bestselling author Sabrina Jeffries comes the first dazzling novel in a sexy new series featuring three half brothers. Bound together by the royal father who denied them, they've formed a pact to help each other achieve their every desire...including the women of their dreams. Miss Katherine Merivale is desperate to make a respectable match -- if only her childhood sweetheart would propose! Until he does, she can't touch the fortune she's inherited. So the last thing she needs is notorious rogue Alec Black putting her proposed marriage at risk with his distracting, smoldering gaze and moonlit kisses.

Alec, the Earl of Iversley -- and one of three bastard sons of the Prince of Wales -- is secretly searching for an heiress bride to pay his debts. Fiery Katherine seems the answer to his prayers, and her passionate response to his practiced seduction soon assures him that she is his. But Alec knows Katherine is looking for a love-match, and he wonders...what will happen when she discovers his deception?

Chapters: 28 plus epilogue

Pages: 355

Keeping My Hope by Christopher Huh

A one-of-a-kind historical fiction graphic novel that depicts WWII and the Holocaust panoramically and cinematographically through the eyes of a young teenager, Ari. Written by 14-year old Christopher Huh. Ari is a teenager whose entire life is turned upside down by the horrors of the Holocaust. He and his family are torn apart and moved to Auschwitz, where the reader gains an inside look at what prisoners in the concentration camps suffered. However, even with this atrocities, the power of friendship shines through and gives Ari hope to keep surviving through the darkest blizzards of terror. Informative yet touching, Keeping My Hope spreads the message of how powerfully racism and prejudice can affect those around us.

Pages: 169

Chapters: 11  plus afterword and preface

This Möbius Strip of Ifs by Mathias B. Freese

In this impressive and varied collection of creative essays, Mathias B. Freese jousts with American culture. A mixture of the author's reminiscences, insights, observations, and criticism, the book examines the use and misuse of psychotherapy, childhood trauma, complicated family relationships, his frustration as a teacher, and the enduring value of tenaciously writing through it all. Freese scathingly describes the conditioning society imposes upon artists and awakened souls. Whether writing about the spiritual teacher, Krishnamurti, poet and novelist, Nikos Kazantzakis, or film giants such as Orson Welles and Buster Keaton, the author skewers where he can and applauds those who refuse to compromise and conform. A psychotherapist for twenty-five years, Freese conveys a unique combination of psychodynamic thinking and Eastern philosophy while examining Existentialism, alternative education, and Jewish values. His award-winning novel, The i Tetralogy, is a groundbreaking contribution to Holocaust literature and a critically acclaimed work of "undying artistic integrity." His short story collection, Down to a Sunless Sea, was published in 2008. At the core of these essays is the author's struggle to authentically express his unique perspective, to unflinchingly reveal a profound visceral truth, along with a passionate desire to be completely alive and aware.

Chapters: 36 plus foreword

Pages:  164

Sophie's Choice by William Styron

"[One morning] in the early spring, I woke up with the remembrance of a girl I'd once known, Sophie. It was a very vivid half-dream, half-revelation, and all of a sudden I realized that hers was a story I had to tell." That very day, William Styron began writing the first chapter of Sophie's Choice.
First published in 1979, this complex and ambitious novel opens with Stingo, a young southerner, journeying north in 1947 to become a writer. It leads us into his intellectual and emotional entanglement with his neighbors in a Brooklyn rooming house: Nathan, a tortured, brilliant Jew, and his lover, Sophie, a beautiful Polish woman whose wrist bears the grim tattoo of a concentration camp...and whose past is strewn with death that she alone survived.

"Sophie's Choice is a passionate, courageous book...a philosophical novel on the most important subject of the twentieth century," said novelist and critic John Gardner in The New York Times Book Review. "One of the reasons Styron succeeds so well in Sophie's Choice is that, like Shakespeare (I think the comparison is not too grand), Styron knows how to cut away from the darkness of his material, so that when he turns to it again it strikes with increasing force....Sophie's Choice is a thriller of the highest order, all the more thrilling for the fact that the dark, gloomy secrets we are unearthing one by one--sorting through lies and terrible misunderstandings like a hand groping for a golden nugget in a rattlesnake's nest--may be authentic secrets of history and our own human nature."

The Modern Library has played a significant role in American cultural life for the better part of a century. The series was founded in 1917 by the publishers Boni and Liveright and eight years later acquired by Bennett Cerf and Donald Klopfer. It provided the foundation for their next publishing venture, Random House. The Modern Library has been a staple of the American book trade, providing readers with affordable hard-bound editions of important works of liter-ature and thought. For the Modern Library's seventy-fifth anniversary, Random House redesigned the series, restoring as its emblem the running torchbearer created by Lucian Bernhard in 1925 and refurbishing jackets, bindings, and type, as well as inaugurating a new program of selecting titles. The Modern Library continues to provide the world's best books, at the best prices.

Chapters: 16

Pages: 626

Sarah's Key by Tatiana De Rosnay 

Paris, July 1942: Sarah, a ten year-old girl, is taken with her parents by the French police as they go door-to-door arresting French families in the middle of the night. Desperate to protect her younger brother, Sarah locks him in a bedroom cupboard-their secret hiding place-and promises to come back for him as soon as they are released.

Sixty Years Later: Sarah's story intertwines with that of Julia Jarmond, an American journalist investigating the roundup. In her research, Julia stumbles onto a trail of secrets that link her to Sarah, and to questions about her own romantic future.

Chapters: N/A

Pages: 293


Eclipse of the Midnight Sun (The Rule of Ranging, #1) by Timothy M Kestrel 

Even those waging the fiercest battles just hew to hard fast rules that separate the soldier from the savage. And when a man’s home is destroyed beyond restoration, it’s up to him alone to forge a code and carve a new place to live in peace. The Rule of Ranging 1: Eclipse of the Midnight Sun is the epic action-adventure drama by Timothy M. Kestrel that follows the fearless Finn on a journey paved with bloodthirsty aggressors, mysterious women, and the rough terrain of a fledgling America. Both grave and uplifting, it’s an absorbing flight of fancy and derring-do. Set in the eighteen century, Kestrel’s story is a work of historic fiction that relives the most perilous days of the French & Indian War. The story begins in Finland, just as a young boy named Finn witnesses the complete annihilation of his home village, as well as the brutal killing of his family by marauding Russians. He barely manages to escape, chased by a merciless Hessian mercenary, Johan Kopf, nicknamed Totenkopf. Following his dying mother's wish to find a mysterious woman named Columbia, Finn's course takes him across the Atlantic. He befriends a slave, Gus, and buys his freedom. On their travels in this brave new world called America, the two make their way through the majestic Hudson Valley in New York, and soon encounter Marcus Fronto, a curious vagrant and philosophical mentor; Daniel Nimham, a fierce Wappinger chief and warrior; and beautiful Catherina Brett. They join forces with Robert Rogers Rangers, and fight against the French at Fort Edward, New York, during the Hudson River campaign in the 1750s. Action-packed and rigorously researched, the story offers a rare vantage of a crucial time in this country’s coming of age that is at once funny, heartbreaking, illuminating, and thrilling. Mining the depths of love, freedom, greed, and loyalty, it’s a page-turning, heart-pounding read that is at once scholarly and scintillating – steeped in history with a death-defying hero for the ages.

Chapters: 5

Pages: 371

Thursday, March 28, 2013

G81 E-Reading Book Review of Trust: A New Beginning by Cristiane Serruya (The Elegant Fifty Shades of Grey )

Name of Book: Trust; A New Beginning

Author: Cristiane Serruya

ISBN: 9781480236295

Publisher: CreateSpace

Part of a Series: Trust

Type of book: 2009-2010, England, elegance, domination, erotica, adult, wealth, luxury, amnesia, secrets, strong female heroine

Year it was published: 2012

Summary:

They are beautiful. They are rich. They are strong willed and successful. They have everything, but love. And each one of them has a dark secret looming in their past.

Sophia is a 25 year old Brazilian widow. Intelligent and ravishing, she flees from her own country after a tragic incident. Hiding from everyone and everything, she remains alone, torn between the love for a dead man, the torment of living without part of her memory and the fear of moving on.

Ethan is one of the most important tycoons in the steel industry. As the memory of an awful evening in his adolescence haunts him night and day, he keeps looking for an elusive woman whom he could love - and who would love him - as he never has in all his 35 years... Until he finds Sophia.

Alistair is a 34 year old powerful banker, searching for one–night stands with women who will warm his bed. And that he can punish physically to abate his anger for his late wife's black deeds and his own guilt for being such a debauched man for so many years. Any woman will do, and he has many to choose from, as they all fall instantly for his manly, devilish charming ways.

In Europe, in the months after October 2009, their paths will cross and clash. Who will win the prize of love?

This book is the first installment of a trilogy.

It is intended for 18 and up.

Characters:

Sophia has got to be one of the most amazing women in fiction I have met. She's elegant, stylish, appealing, intelligent, strong-willed, loyal, moody, protective, naive and somewhat childish. I at times wondered if she was a little too perfect, and while reading it, I hoped to see more of her flaws rather than see her as an impenetrable goddess. However, the author does deliver my wish at the end. Ethan is Sophia's first boyfriend after the death of her husband who, despite his flaws, seems to be better than the alternative in my view. Ethan is ambitious, determined, tortured, and jealous. He also dislikes children. Alistair is also tortured but far more darker than Ethan is. Alistair loves children, is royalty, tortured, determined and seems to have crossed the line between pain and pleasure. The men have same personalities, but she somehow makes them different. I also realized something interesting; in an odd way Ethan can be thought of as, well, Edward, while Alistair can be thought of Christian. (No idea why my mind is doing this...) Very strong and memorable characters. Their secrets are barely revealed in first book, thus I'm eager to see them in second book.

Theme:

I could pick out a multitude of themes that the author tried to convey, such as love helps clear the path to the future, or try to work out your life before inviting someone else, or perhaps its not that fun looking for a type of guy that one reads about in current popular books.

Plot:

Its written in third person narrative from Alistair's, Sophia's and Ethan's points of views. The points of views constantly shifted which was a bit annoying, especially when it seemed that every few paragraphs it would move from Sophia's thoughts to Ethan's and afterwards I'd have no idea who was talking. The beginning and ending of the book are attention grabbing and very strong, while when Alistair pursued Sophia, it seemed to drag on in my opinion. (On one hand I wanted to see how bad Alistair could get, while on the other hand I didn't want for Sophia to walk into that kind of fire...) Constant references to luxury brands was also a bit annoying for me, considering I didn't know how they looked like, but I understood why the author used them constantly. She wanted for readers to truly experience the world of wealth instead of just simply telling us about them. The characters of Sophia and Alistair and Ethan were strong enough to overlook that though.

Author Information:
(from goodreads.com)

born
in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil April 25, 1970

gender
female

website
http://cristianeserruya.com.br

twitter username
CrisSerruya

genre
Contemporary, Romance, Chick Lit

influences
Classic literature, historical romance

member since
November 2012

I live in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, with my husband and two daughters. I'm a lawyer, who specializes in cases of sexual abuse and violence against children and women. I also have a Masters in Business Law and a BA in Fine Arts.

I've always loved to read, write and listen to music. I lived and studied in England, France, Italy and Switzerland. Traveling is one of my passions - as is keeping fit and healthy.

After twenty-two years of practicing law, I decided to give writing a go. And - amazingly - it was just the piece that was missing in my life.

Opinion:

The only words I can come up with is 'wow'. I loved every moment of reading this book and hanging out with the tortured souls. I loved the characters, the setting, descriptions, and storytelling. What I loved is that its not a virginal naive heroine we are dealing with. Sophia has been married and widowed and she is a lawyer that has seen the dark side in terms of defending women from men just like Alistair and Ethan. She takes my breath away. Considering the popularity of Fifty Shades of Grey, I couldn't help but wonder how much the author was inspired by Fifty Shades to create this type of book. If you rolled your eyes while reading Fifty Shades, or, like me, would rather put your brain through a meat grinder rather than try to read Fifty Shades, I would highly highly recommend you read this book. The author knows what she's talking about for one; Sophia echoes our own thoughts about her situations, and despite the slight unrealism of Sophia's character, I enjoyed getting to know her.

Quick notes: I would like to thank the author for the opportunity to read and review the book. 


Post script: This is the Alistair I always pictured whenever I saw the name :D He's a fictional game character, but still...


5 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

Monday, March 25, 2013

G70 Intimacy: How to get more of it A peek into understanding the male mind

Title of the book: Intimacy: How to get more of it, A peek into understanding the male mind

Author: Jodi Ambrose

Publisher: In your face publishing

Publishing Date: 2011

ISBN: 9780615537115

Summary:

Okay ladies, it's about time for you to get what you need and want from your man. If you are ready for more intimacy and happiness in your relationship, then you have come to right place. My goal is to provide you with 20 steps that will help you get the kind of relationship that makes you giggle yourself silly with joy.

Is it more cuddle-time you want? More overall sweetness? Or maybe you are looking to rekindle that spark which, over time, has dimmed a bit? I'm going to give you tips and tricks on how to get all of that, on your own terms.

We're going to get down to brass tacks here, so prepare yourself. We'll talk about body parts, manipulation strategies (that sounds terrible, I know!), picking your battles, learning how to trust and a whole host of other ideas designed to create a happier home life for both you and your man.

Happy wife, happy life. Happy spouse, happy house. We've heard it all before. Now it's time to make it happen! Come along on this journey with me and discover the strategies that will help you get more of what you desire from the love of your life. Enjoy!

Other works:

She also wrote Sex: How to Get More of It A guy's roadmap to paradise, in and out of the bedroom as well as Darn Good Eats: The Cookbook for Creative Chefs and Reluctant Cooks

Author's background:
(from goodreads.com)

url
http://www.goodreads.com/jodiambrose

gender
female

website
http://jodiambrose.com

twitter username
JodiAmbrose

genre
Humor, Health, Mind & Body, Cookbooks

influences
Thoughtful people who have something to say!

member since
August 2011

Theme:

"We know that men are freakish creatures from another planet in a lot of ways, but what does make them similar to us is that they like to be treated kindly. You, being sweet and attentive, can go a long way to securing more intimacy with your man. Everyone wants to feel the warm fuzzies in their heart when they think of their mate. So, give him the warm fuzzies." (48)

Problems addressed:

Women (including me) love to guess and think what men themselves are thinking. For time immemorial men have got to be more than the cavemen in modern times. Here the author tells us surprising on how to keep the man in your life happy and what they find annoying.

Summary of content:

"Man brain: a dark and confusing place to which there is no decoder ring. Were it only so easy, right? If only we girls had some simple way of getting into their heads so we could better understand the annoying mystery that is the main-brain. Well, I can't ship you a magic decoder ring for $6.95, but I can offer you some insight into that strange and bewildering place." (1)

Thesis:

"First things first. Do you want more intimacy and happiness in your relationship? If you do, you are in the right spot. My goal is to give you some tips and tricks to love and happiness that you can use with your man to get you closer to having the kind of relationship you want." (1)

Main points:

There are 20 main points, but I will list only five.
* Compliment his one-eyed trouser snake
*Always remember that men are visual creatures
*Turn off the bitch factor
*Avoid asking him, "what are you thinking?"
*If you are PMSing or having your girl-time, suck it up

Why its interesting/informative:

What I found interesting about the book is the bathroom thing. I was surprised to learn that around men women tried their best to avoid bathroom as much as they could. A lot of things are common sense and the advice is really helpful, in particular she stresses the importance of something in 10 hours, 10 days, 10 months 10 years?

Supports thesis:

The book does support thesis. Yesterday I read the bulleted list to a guy and he agreed with 95 percent of the list of what a woman should do to keep a man happy in her life.

Special features:

It features a bulleted list and summary of what a woman should understand from reading the book. There is also humor on the very last page of the book.

Issues it raises:

For some odd reason I'm remembering the Valentine special for fairly odd-parents where Timmy wishes for a wall to separate the genders, and afterwards you see a messy disorganized Neanderthal world. Basically, men are not complicated like we make them out to be. They are simple with simple needs it seems.

Ideas in book vs larger ideas:

While the book won't solve bigger problems like abuse or whatnot, it does give ideas that anyone can do for free to please a man in your life. (No, not just sexual ideas either...) and none of the ideas go into hundreds of dollars. She even suggests prioritizing things if you're not a cook for example.

Agree/Disagree with author's opinions:

I have to agree with a lot of her opinions and her advice because its very common sense. For example, my dad gets annoyed if you start pestering him when he comes from work. Some things I would need to work on is to try to speak up more about what pleases or displeases me, which I feel girls are trained to hide. Besides my dad, I haven't really lived with a man, but it would be cool if I might ask some of my friends and my sister on what they think.

Sources: 

While there is no mention of self help books and whatnot, the sources that she used were personal anecdotes, and she even checked up with some guy friends and her husband as well. She also uses personal examples from her own life, such as how she and her husband divided the chores and whatnot.

Conclusion: 

I would encourage women and men to read the book. For one thing its short, about 68 pages, and I can imagine that it will be a good conversation starter on what the man would like from his woman, or how he would like to be treated. The book is also very humorous as well, so its like killing three birds with one stone haha.

Personal Opinion:

I highly recommend for women to read this small book into the male behavior. Its informative, interesting and its short and to the point. Its slightly longer than the Sex book, but its not overwhelming. The author even goes into why certain things tend to be offensive for men. Check out why you shouldn't talk during the game he's watching.

Quick notes: I would like to thank the author for the opportunity to read and review the book. This entire review will be published in my blog, on amazon and goodreads.

 5 out of 5
 (0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

Sunday, March 24, 2013

G57 Book Review of Maelyn by Anita Valle

Name of Book: Maelyn

Author: Anita Valle

ISBN: 9781438283913

Publisher: Amazon

Part of a Series: Nine Princesses Novellas

Type of book: Fantasy, princesses, nobility vs commoner, books, ideas, arranged marriages

Year it was published: 2012

Summary:

Maelyn was not born a princess. The king found her as a child, the lone survivor of a poor village slaughtered by the Red Fever. Suddenly she became a princess of Runa Realm, the first of nine orphans adopted by the king.

By her eighteenth year, Maelyn rules over Runa and a family of nine sisters. But some call the princesses frauds and imposters, a handful of urchins raised into royalty. Even Uncle Jarrod, the High King of Grunwold, seems determined to prove that Maelyn no longer deserves to be a princess. With a family losing faith in her, and a kingdom growing dangerously hostile, even Maelyn begins to wonder if she is truly a real princess. And if her riches will turn to rags once again….

The Nine Princesses Novellas is a series that chronicles the adventures of an unconventional family of princesses, the struggles they face in a kingdom often hostile to their humble origins, and the day-to-day dramas of nine young women whose personalities often clash like swords. Fans of Gail Carson Levine and Shannon Hale would enjoy this young-adult series. Recommended for ages 12 and up. For more information go to www.anitavalleart.com

Characters:

The characters and personalities of the princesses, however brief, tended to be the strong points of the book. Although I feel that I'm a lot like Maelyn with coming up with unusual ideas or finding holes in stories and situations, I really was curious about Coralina as well as others. The characters of Uncle Jarrod is not very well drawn as I would have liked, but I still would like for him to make an appearance in the future books and to find out more about him.

Theme:

Anybody can be a princess

Plot:

This is written from Maelyn's point of view in third person narrative. In beginning there are some mysterious events that aren't explained at all, and the writing tended to be disconnected a bit as the audience watched Maelyn in her princess role. Towards the very end of the book, I started to enjoy it a lot, and wasn't prepared for the certain discoveries that the author revealed. I also felt pity for the sisters, although not Uncle Jarrod.

Author Information:
(from goodreads.com)

born
Philadelphia PA, The United States

gender
female

website
http://www.anitavalleart.com

genre
Literature & Fiction, Young Adult, Science Fiction & Fantasy

influences
Shannon Hale, Gail Carson Levine, Charles Dickens

member since
August 2012

About this author

I think people like to read lists more than paragraphs, so I'll do my bio as such.

* Born and raised in Philly, home of the best cheesesteaks.

* Except for first grade, homeschooled all the way through.

* Two younger brothers and two younger sisters who are my very bestest friends.

* Married at 20, had three kids by 30. Developed the Nine Princesses during that period.

* Gave up the project several times in frustration and despair over the publishing industry.

* At 31, thanks to the internet and Kindle, finally published "Maelyn". So happy.

* Random interests: drawing, reading, music, chocolate, Nintendo, BBC movies, Colin Firth, Panera Bread.

Opinion:

I do admit that the book had a four star potential at the end, but it didn't quite reach the level, unfortunately. This is a very lovely novel with princesses that were born commoners but due to a generous king became princesses of Runa. The birth and heritage are questioned in the book and reading much encouraged. I liked the relationship between Willow and Maelyn, but what I didn't like is that the writing tended to be disconnected and the narrative wasn't linear. Some story hints were left in the air until the very end when certain things were resolved while others will hopefully be resolved in future books.  I think I would have preferred if certain things were revealed at beginning rather than end. Despite the rating, I would encourage others to try it, and to give it to girls to tell them that books aren't so bad. I think its more enjoyable for middle readers rather than people around my age, but its my opinion. When she gets an opportunity, the author's strength is in the plot itself rather than day to day things, unfortunately.

Quick notes: I would like to thank the author for the opportunity to read and review the book.

3 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

G68 Sex: How to get More of it; A guy's roadmap to paraidse, in and otu of the bedroom

Title of the book: Sex: How to get More of it; A guy's road map to paradise, in and out of the bedroom

Author: Jodi Ambrose

Publisher: In Your Face publishing

Publishing Date: 2011

ISBN: 9780615443430

Summary:

How can you make your woman happy and also get what you need? Believe it or not, it's not impossible! And it doesn't cost more than a couple of bucks here and there--no trips to Italy or expensive jewelry required.

In this handbook, which I've kept intentionally short and to-the-point, you will get insight into how women think so that you can speak and behave in a way that will reignite her passion for you. To help you with this I've come up with THE LIST which contains 20 easy things you can do to make your relationship happier, more peaceful, and full of love, romance and sex.

Ultimately, women want to feel safe, loved, appreciated and cherished. I'm going to give you the tools you need to help her feel exactly that.

Enjoy the handbook and I hope it helps bring you and your girl joy that will last a lifetime.

PS: Just wanted to give you all fair warning... this book gets down to brass tacks. It's mouthy, sometimes sarcastic and (gasp!) uses an occasional cuss word, but it is also very much from the heart. If you are delicate in nature, be prepared. But if you just want the honest truth about how to be happier with your woman, and don't mind a little feistiness in the process, you are in the right place.

Other Works:

She also wrote Intimacy: How to get More of it a peek into understanding the male mind as well as Darn Good Eats: The Cookbook for Creative Chefs and Reluctant Cooks

Background:

(from goodreads.com)

url
http://www.goodreads.com/jodiambrose

gender
female

website
http://jodiambrose.com

twitter username
JodiAmbrose

genre
Humor, Health, Mind & Body, Cookbooks

influences
Thoughtful people who have something to say!

member since
August 2011

Theme:

Want to know the secret of what it takes to keep a woman happy? The author will teach you how to do it, and it doesn't cost hundreds of dollars.

Problems addressed: 

Men often struggle with trying to keep women in their lives happy and satisfied. Very often they will feel that the only way to a woman's heart is through expensive and grand gestures, when in fact its the small things that a man does.

Summary of content:

"So, why would you bother reading this handbook? Easy answer: it will get you laid. Ever heard the expression, 'happy wife, happy life?' yeah, yeah, I know...not fair. Why doesn't yoru happiness come into play? It does, I assure you. If your woman is happy with you, she will do things for you that she otherwise wouldn't." (1)

Thesis:

 "In this handbook, I'll share with you the secrets to figuring out women. We're pretty easy, once you know the tricks of the trade. Keep in mind, what we're going to discuss works for most women unless they have a clinical personality disorder, are pure evil, or are just plain nuts. From these women I recommend you immediately run. I cannot help you if you like the crazy bitches. With them, you are on your own." (1)

Main points:

There are 20 list point items on how to keep a woman happy. I will not list all of them, but only five
.
* We always want to know we are your number one priority.
*Small compliments all the time are WAY better than a trip to Hawaii
*Be happy if she's smart, or understanding if she's stupid
*Don't fart around her
*Occasionally clean the kitchen or vacuum the living room.

Why its interesting and informative:

Fortunately or unfortunately, most of men and women can't live without one another, and almost all our lives we spend trying to figure out the opposite gender. (Don't believe me about that? Almost all the books, fiction and non-fiction, are devoted to love in one way or another.) Men struggle with understanding women in their lives, and many women are cultured to be secretive about themselves. The author herself isn't shy and is very straight on with advice. Almost all the time I found myself agreeing with her advice.

Supports thesis:

I'm a girl last time I checked, and I agreed many times with what she wrote and said on how to keep women happy. She addresses many common issues that men have a hard time understanding with when it comes to women, and I am tempted that if I should ever date, I would ask that person to read this book so they can understand me.

Special features:

There is a summary about the common themes one observes as well as a list of how women keep a checkpoint system which is easy to understand and isn't verbose as John Grey's system. There is also a list of the chapters and ideas she will cover more in depth.

Addressing Issues:

Women aren't as complicated as they seem to men, which is one of the themes, and contrary to what the man may think, it doesn't take millions of dollars to keep us happy.

Ideas in book vs larger ideas:

I can well imagine the dread that major brands and distributors will go through once they see the simplicity of keeping a woman happy. While big baubles are nice, what's nicer is small things happening everyday instead of something that should take up a whole year. I also think that this is affordable advice for all classes and incomes and so forth. If you're a woman reading this book, she doesn't talk down or make you feel less than and I'm surprised that the book isn't as popular as it should be. Its a good version of Men are From Mars and Women are From Venus.

Agree/Disagree with author's opinions:

98 percent of the time I was reading this book, I agreed with her advice and her expanding on the list items. When I read Men, Women and Relationships by John Gray, I remember something about the book rubbed me the wrong way, perhaps a feeling that women were to blame for unhappiness. She doesn't assign this kind of blame and for those who will read the book, I'm sure this will be more agreeable than John Gray's books. Besides, if nothing else, its 38 pages and a very succinct and worthwhile read.

Sources: 

The author used personal anecdotes and friends and family members. If she has used self help books, they're not mentioned at all.

Conclusion:

I would highly recommend that both genders, men and women, would read this short book and they will come away far smarter about themselves and the opposite gender. It is only 38 pages as I have mentioned earlier, not 1000 pages.

Personal opinion:

I agreed with a lot that she has written, and some of the things about the book have surprised me, such as what might happen if the man might not put the toilet seat down, or how a man should show his love through touch and randomness rather than routine and clockwork.

Quick notes: I would like to thank the author for the opportunity to read and review the book. This entire review will be published in my blog, on amazon and goodreads.

 5 out of 5
 (0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

E-reading Book Review of #1 Never Seduce a Scoundrel by Sabrina Jeffries

Name of Book: Never Seduce a Scoundrel

Author: Sabrina Jeffries

ISBN: 9781416516088

Publisher: Pocket Books

Part of a Series: The School for Heiresses

Type of book: Romance, Adult, Regency, war, revenge, 1825, 1828, adventure, brain, obedience, Earl's daughter/American soldier relationship

Year it was published: 2006

Summary:

"Be careful, Amelia -- you know how reckless you can be!" -- Mrs. Charlotte Harris, headmistress

Lady Amelia Plume has many admirers -- it's too bad they're all fortune hunters and fops who can't provide the exotic adventures she seeks.

But the ballrooms of Mayfair have become much more appealing since the arrival of Major Lucas Winter, an American with a dark past and a dangerous air. Lucas is brash, arrogant -- and scandalously tempting.

Every thrilling kiss sparks hotter desire, yet Amelia suspects that Lucas has a hidden motive in wooing her. And she intends to discover it, by any means necessary

Characters:

The characters are well written and believable. Amelia is an adventurous spirit who tends to take more than she bargains for when it comes Lucas Winter. Lucas Winter is a tortured hero who's haunted by his past and his duties. I had a difficult time understanding Mrs. Harris though, especially when it came to a scene of mameluke sword. Shouldn't she be aware of the book that Amelia and her classmates perused through in order to understand what she was doing? I also was puzzled by the scene with Lord Pomeroy and how Lucas has offended him. Other characters such as Venetia and Louisa North do show up.

Theme:

Obedience vs true desire, this is a bit feminist writing

Plot:

This is written in third person narrative from Amelia's and Lucas' point of view. One of the goodreads reviewers noted Lucas' speech pattern. I have to admit that the speech is unusual and I would have expected it to be Southern rather than New England in nature. (Do they honestly say hellfire and damnation in New England states?) I was also confused about the ending and felt it didn't really get resolved satisfactorily, at least to my liking. I also would have liked a brief elementary version of War of 1812 history. (Believe it or not I don't know everything!)

Author Information:
(from goodreads.com)

born
New Orleans, The United States

gender
female

website
http://www.sabrinajeffries.com

genre
Romance

member since
December 2009

About this author

If having a colorful life turns you into a novelist, then I had no choice but to become a writer. My whole life changed when my parents moved us to Thailand when I was seven. Before I was eighteen, I'd eaten chicken heads and jellyfish, been chased by a baby elephant, seen countless cobras and pythons, had the entire series of rabies shots (yes, the ones in the stomach with those lo-o-o-ng needles), and played in rain forests and rubber plantations.

But if you're wondering how the daughter of missionaries ended up a romance novelist, let me explain. When you're in the boonies in a foreign country with only your pesky siblings for company, you read a lot. And I mean, a lot. I read everything—classics, children's books, mysteries, science fiction, even comic books. Most of all, I read romances.

I cut my teeth on Cherry Ames novels, progressed to Grace Livingston Hill and Emilie Loring, graduated to Barbara Cartland, then got hooked on the hard stuff in college with my first Rosemary Rogers novel. I tried laying off the romances during my six years in graduate school, but it was fruitless. Woodiwiss and Lindsey beckoned.

Finally, I stopped fighting it. I tossed aside my Ph.D. in English and surrendered to the impulse to write a novel. And a romance writer was born! Now I live in North Carolina with my husband and son, where I write books full-time. Thanks to my colorful life, I have plenty of fodder for my novels, so I plan to be doing this for a very, very long time. Isn't life grand?

Opinion:

By an odd coincidence I have heard of her through a friend, Madison, who happens to be her niece. I recently acquired the Royal Brotherhood series and due to me not wishing to disrupt the series, so to speak, I decided to read this one first. The writing is really delightful and she has a gift for bringing out the word and personalities of the character, at least when it came to Amelia. The story is researched with the whole fantasy element of people bathing in 1820s. (Should look up when bathing became so popular) I did find the time and facts to be interesting and nicely incorporated into the story, although I wished for more details, or rather a short version of the War of 1812. (An elementary version would have been nice.) The dialogue is also nicely crafted as well as other...things.

4 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)

Friday, March 22, 2013

Coming Up...Week 12 of 2013

Books to be reviewed:

N/A

What I'm Reading now:

01. Never Seduce a Scoundrel- Sabrina Jeffries

"Be careful, Amelia -- you know how reckless you can be!" -- Mrs. Charlotte Harris, headmistress

Lady Amelia Plume has many admirers -- it's too bad they're all fortune hunters and fops who can't provide the exotic adventures she seeks.

But the ballrooms of Mayfair have become much more appealing since the arrival of Major Lucas Winter, an American with a dark past and a dangerous air. Lucas is brash, arrogant -- and scandalously tempting.

Every thrilling kiss sparks hotter desire, yet Amelia suspects that Lucas has a hidden motive in wooing her. And she intends to discover it, by any means necessary

Chapters: 14 out of 28 chapters plus epilogue

Pages: 122 out of 253 (on e-reader)

Letters from your future; reaching for your highest potential in times of great change by Brett L Bowden

Dear Ones,

We have been sending Humanity instructional letters for some time now. the Letters, collectively known as The Letters Project, started in 2007 and will continue until Humanity has reached its full potential and it is deemed that they will no longer be needed. These Letters are instructions about life and hwo life works from teh perspective of the Spiritual Realm in which we reside.

We go by many names for there are many of us here who want to communicate these truths to you. We work through the spiritual energy named Jaipur and are collectively known to this channel as The Counsel of Divine Wisdom. We are energies that reside in teh upper realms of existence. In your modern day temrs you might say that we are Ascended Masters although that term you use has restrictions, but it will suffice for htese purposes.

It is our intent to show you a new way, another way for Humanity to exist. Indeed, if you are pleased with what you see and feel around you, then this message will have no meaning for you. However, if youa re not pleased with the present condition in which you perceive your world, then you now have a golden opportunity to change it. You can do this by changing your perception of what you see around you and in doing this you will begin to change your life, your world and yourself.

Where will your road take you? Go inside yourself and seek the insights of your soul in hte silent moments. It will know the way.

The world of your highest imaginings is within your reach.

Progress: 157 out of 265 pages, 22 out of 40 chapters plus introduction and epilogue and preface

A Gospel of Kama Sutra by Poonaam Uppal

"So, do you believe in love?" Someone asked me once, and I replied, "I feel, I am here, in this world, just to teach teh world, "love" and "The ritual of love making," the essence of true love and how to create "Holy Kama Sutra." -Poonaam Uppal

THis is a true love story of glamorous, stylish and fiercely ambitious Indian lass Moh Lal Rai who has only one cherished desire, aspiration n her mind to become an internationally acclaimed avant-garde Fashion designer. Destiny deceives Moh's desires landing her in US. During her fashion show at Las Vegas she experiences violent vibration followed by a thunderous broadcasting of her future "soon in 1997 you will meet your true eternal lover" on this earth...

Dragooned by powerful longing to meet her ancient lover she is now a solitary traveler of an abyss of unfathomable space and time where she is sent on a roller coaster ride to a bizarre realm of gonzo occurrences, happenings, visions, premonitions, deja vous, diving visitation and startling revelation of her past birth and she involuntarily unravels the anciet most secret of the extinct art of Kama Sutra and "Tantric Sex" once taught by Lord Shiva himself but now these cryptic writings are shrouded in the misty Himalayan valley. In a cruel game plan of higher she is compelled by a powerful goddess to become a saint a Guru, a Love Messiah and reveal the lost mystical secret behind Kama Sutra___Kama Sutra is the holiest of scripture and only through Kama Sutra human could reach nirvana in this climaxing Black Age. "This is a true love story only the names and places are fictitious."

Progress 319 out of 1084 pages, 29 out of 92 chapters

Stop me if you've heard this one before- David Yoo

If Albert Kim has learned one thing in his tragic adolescence, it's that God (probably a sadistic teenaged alien) does not want him to succeed at Bern High. By the end of sophomore year, Al is so tired of humiliation that he's chosen to just forget girls and high school society in general, and enjoy the Zen-like detachment that comes from being an "intentional" loser.

Then he meets Mia Stone, and all the repressed hormones come flooding back. Mia, his co-worker at the Bern Inn, is adorable, popular, and most intimidatingly, the ex- long-term girlfriend of Ivy-bound, muscle-bound king of BHS and world class jerk, Ryan Stackhouse. But -- chalk it up to the magic of Al's inner beauty -- by the end of a summer vacuuming hotel rooms and goofing off together, he and Mia are officially "something."

Albert barely has time to ponder this miracle before the bomb drops: Ryan has been diagnosed with cancer, and he needs Mia's support, i.e. constant companionship. True, he's lost weight and he's getting radiation, but that doesn't make him any less of a jerk. And to Albert, it couldn't be more apparent that Ryan is using his cancer to steal Mia back. With the whole town rallying behind Ryan like he's a fallen hero, and Mia emotionally confused and worried for Ryan, Al's bid for love is not a popular campaign. In fact, it's exactly like driving the wrong way on a five-lane highway.

In this desperately funny novel, David Yoo tells an authentic story of first love, and therein captures the agony, the mania, the kicking and screaming that define teenage existence.

Pages: 165 out of 374

Chapters: 21 out of 48

Mysteries of Udolpho- Ann Radcliffe

Stranded in a gloomy medieval fortress, an orphaned heroine battles the devious schemes of her guardians as well as her own pensive vsisions and melancholy fancies. Generations of readers have thrilled to The Mysteries of Udolpho, one of the most popular of the early Gothic novels, and considered a landmark in the realm of psychological fiction. Set in 1584, the tale unfolds amid the secret chambers of a chateau in southern France and a castle in the remote Apennines, populated by pirates, brigands, ghosts, and specters. Emily St. Aubert, imprisoned by her rapacious guardian Count Montoni and his sadistic wife, struggles to reconcile her father's teachings of reserve and moderation with her own reckless passions. Emily's attempts to control her emotions and resolve her suspicions and self-doubts offer a haunting and hypnotic pre-Freudian exploration of the psyche.

Chapters: 6 out of 58

Pages: 53 out of 620

Chronicles of the Crusades by Jean de Joinville, Geoffroi de Villehardouin

The two famous Old French chronicles in this volume were composed by soldiers who took part in the Holy Wars. Villehardouin's Conquest of Constantinople is the first trustworthy and fully informed history of the Crusades. Distinguished by its simplicity and lucidity, it is an account of the Fourth Crusade, which ironically ended as a war against the Eastern Christians of the Orthodox Church. Joinville's Life of Saint Louis was inspired by the author's close attachment to the pious king and provides a vivid picture of his times and the ways of life in the East.

Progress: Chapter 19 out of 20 plus introduction, page 142 out of 353





Nobody But Us-Kristin Halbrook

Will

Maybe I'm too late. Maybe Zoe's dad stole all her fifteen years and taught her to be scared. I'll undo it. Help her learn to be strong again, and brave. Not that I'm any kind of example, but we can learn together.

When the whole world is after you, sometimes it seems like you can't run fast enough.

Zoe

Maybe it'll take Will years to come to terms with being abandoned. Maybe it'll take forever. I'll stay with him no matter how long it takes to prove that people don't always leave, don't always give up on you.

Chapters: 10 out of 60?

 Pages: 66 out of 288

The Secret Garden-Frances Hodgson Burnett

Mistress Mary is quite contrary until she helps her garden grow. Along the way, she manages to cure her sickly cousin Colin, who is every bit as imperious as she. These two are sullen little peas in a pod, closed up in a gloomy old manor on the Yorkshire moors of England, until a locked-up garden captures their imaginations and puts the blush of a wild rose in their cheeks; "It was the sweetest, most mysterious-looking place any one could imagine. The high walls which shut it in were covered with the leafless stems of roses which were so thick, that they matted together.... 'No wonder it is still,' Mary whispered. 'I am the first person who has spoken here for ten years.'" As new life sprouts from the earth, Mary and Colin's sour natures begin to sweeten. For anyone who has ever felt afraid to live and love, The Secret Garden's portrayal of reawakening spirits will thrill and rejuvenate. Frances Hodgson Burnett creates characters so strong and distinct, young readers continue to identify with them even 85 years after they were conceived. (Ages 9 to 12)

Chapters: 4 out of 27

Pages: 27 out of 288

Destiny, Rewritten- Kathryn Fitzmaurice

Des·tin·y: |destinē/
(noun) The hidden power believed to control what will happen in the future; fate.

Eleven-year-old Emily Elizabeth Davis has been told for her entire life that her destiny is to become a poet, just like her famous namesake, Emily Dickinson. But Emily doesn’t even really like poetry, and she has a secret career ambition that she suspects her English-professor mother will frown on. Then a seeming tragedy strikes: just after discovering that it contains an important family secret, she accidentally loses the special copy of Emily Dickinson’s poetry that was given to her at birth. As Emily and her friends search for the lost book in used bookstores and thrift shops all across town, Emily’s understanding of destiny begins to unravel and then rewrite itself in a marvelous new way.

In her third novel, Kathryn Fitzmaurice again weaves a richly textured and delightful story about unexpected connections, about the ways that friends can help us see ourselves for who we truly are, and about the most perfect kinds of happy endings: those that happen just on time.

 Chapters: 5 out of 63

 Pages: 33 out of 335

Maelyn- Anita Valle

Maelyn was not born a princess. The king found her as a child, the lone survivor of a poor village slaughtered by the Red Fever. Suddenly she became a princess of Runa Realm, the first of nine orphans adopted by the king.

By her eighteenth year, Maelyn rules over Runa and a family of nine sisters. But some call the princesses frauds and imposters, a handful of urchins raised into royalty. Even Uncle Jarrod, the High King of Grunwold, seems determined to prove that Maelyn no longer deserves to be a princess. With a family losing faith in her, and a kingdom growing dangerously hostile, even Maelyn begins to wonder if she is truly a real princess. And if her riches will turn to rags once again….

The Nine Princesses Novellas is a series that chronicles the adventures of an unconventional family of princesses, the struggles they face in a kingdom often hostile to their humble origins, and the day-to-day dramas of nine young women whose personalities often clash like swords. Fans of Gail Carson Levine and Shannon Hale would enjoy this young-adult series. Recommended for ages 12 and up. For more information go to www.anitavalleart.com

Chapters: 17 out of 30 plus epilogue and Prologue

Pages: 76 out of 132

Future Books I will read:

Bruce and the Road to Courage-Gale Leach

Bruce, a young caterpillar who is afraid of heights, doesn’t want to become a butterfly. Tired of being teased and bullied about this, he leaves home, unaware that he has embarked on a heroic journey that will test both his character and his courage.

Through a series of perilous adventures, Bruce discovers that standing up for yourself and doing what you know is right, even in the face of great odds, are the most courageous actions of all.

Chapters: 27

Pages: 110 (e-reader)




O Pioneers! By Willa Cather

Set on the Nebraska prairie where Willa Cather (1873-1947) grew up, this powerful early novel tells the story of the young Alexandra Bergson, whose dying father leaves her in charge of the family and of the lands they have struggled to farm. In Alexandra's long fight to survive and succeed, O Pionners! relates an important chapter in the history of the American frontier. Evoking the harsh grandeur of the prairie, this landmark of American fiction unfurls a saga of love, greed, murder, failed dreams and hard-won triump. In the fateful interaction of her characters, Willa Cather compares with keen insight the experiences of Swedish, French and Bohemian immigrants in the United states. And in her absorbing narrative, she displayes teh virtuoso storytelling skills that have mad her one of the most admired masters of the American novel.

Chapters: 40

Pages: 122

The Awakening and Selected Short Fiction- Kate Chopin

When it first appeared in 1899, Kate Chopin’s The Awakening was greeted with cries of outrage. The novel’s frank portrayal of a woman’s emotional, intellectual, and sexual awakening shocked the sensibilities of the time and destroyed the author’s reputation and career. Many years passed before this short, pioneering work was recognized as a major achievement in American literature.

Set in and around New Orleans, The Awakening tells the story of Edna Pontellier, a young wife and mother who, determined to control her own life, flouts convention by moving out of her husband’s house, having an adulterous affair, and becoming an artist.

Beautifully written, with sensuous imagery and vivid local descriptions, The Awakening has lost none of its power to provoke and inspire. Additionally, this edition includes thirteen of Kate Chopin’s magnificent short stories.
Stories Included in the Volume:
The Awakening
Emancipation: A Life Fable
A Shameful Affair
At the ‘Cadian Ball
Désirée’s Baby
A Gentleman of Bayou Têche
A Respectable Woman
The Story of an Hour
Athénaïse
A Pair of Silk Stockings
Elizabeth Stock’s One Story
The Storm
The Godmother
A Little Country Girl

Chapters: 39 plus 13 short stories

Pages: 288

Chronicles by Froissart

Froissart (1337-1410), sometimes described as the historian of the Hundred Years' War, was one of the first great journalists.

His Chronicles reveal the same curiosity about character and customs which underlies the works of his contemporary, Chaucer. This selection depicts a panorama of Europe during the great age of Anglo-French rivalry, from the deposition of Edward II to the downfall of Richard II, Froissart's famous descriptions of chivalry in action at Sluy's, Crecy, Calais and Poitiers are only part of a comprehensive court's-eye-view of society which embraces trading activities, diplomacy and the Peasants' Revolt.

Pages: 471

Chapters: around 60?

The Last Outlaws; The Lives and Legends of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid by Thom Hatch

The Old West was coming to an end.Two legendary outlaws refused to go with it. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid—as leaders of the Wild Bunch, they planned and executed the most daring bank and train robberies of the day, with a professionalism never before seen by authorities. For several years at the end of the 1890s, the two friends, along with a revolving cast who made up their band of thieves, eluded local law enforcement and bounty hunters, all while stealing from the rich bankers and eastern railroad corporations who exploited western land. The close calls were many, but Butch and Sundance always managed to escape to rob again another day—that is, until they rode headlong into the 20th century. Fenced-in range, telephone lines, electric lights, and new crime-fighting techniques were quickly rendering obsolete the outlaws of the wide open frontier. Knowing their time was up, Butch and Sundance, along with a mysterious beauty named Etta Place, headed to South America, vowing to leave their criminal careers behind. But riding the trails of Chile, Argentina and Bolivia, Butch and Sundance would find that crime wasn’t through with them just yet. In The Last Outlaws, Thom Hatch brings these memorable characters to life like never before: Butch, the brains of the outfit; Sundance, the man of action; and the men on both sides of the law whom they fought with and against. From their early holdup attempts to that fateful day in Bolivia, author Thom hatch draws on a wealth of fresh research to go beyond the myth and provide a compelling new look at these legends of the Wild West.

Chapters: 14 plus prologue

Pages: 255

Doctor Zhivago- Boris Pasternak

This epic tale about the effects of the Russian Revolution and its aftermath on a bourgeois family was not published in the Soviet Union until 1987. One of the results of its publication in the West was Pasternak's complete rejection by Soviet authorities; when he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1958 he was compelled to decline it. The book quickly became an international best-seller.

Dr. Yury Zhivago, Pasternak's alter ego, is a poet, philosopher, and physician whose life is disrupted by the war and by his love for Lara, the wife of a revolutionary. His artistic nature makes him vulnerable to the brutality and harshness of the Bolsheviks. The poems he writes constitute some of the most beautiful writing in the novel.

Chapters: 17

Pages: 456

01. In the Prince's Bed by Sabrina Jeffries

From bestselling author Sabrina Jeffries comes the first dazzling novel in a sexy new series featuring three half brothers. Bound together by the royal father who denied them, they've formed a pact to help each other achieve their every desire...including the women of their dreams. Miss Katherine Merivale is desperate to make a respectable match -- if only her childhood sweetheart would propose! Until he does, she can't touch the fortune she's inherited. So the last thing she needs is notorious rogue Alec Black putting her proposed marriage at risk with his distracting, smoldering gaze and moonlit kisses.

Alec, the Earl of Iversley -- and one of three bastard sons of the Prince of Wales -- is secretly searching for an heiress bride to pay his debts. Fiery Katherine seems the answer to his prayers, and her passionate response to his practiced seduction soon assures him that she is his. But Alec knows Katherine is looking for a love-match, and he wonders...what will happen when she discovers his deception?

Chapters: 28 plus epilogue

Pages: 355

The Castilian Suite- Graham Blackburn

In 1961 Generalíssimo Franco is still dictator of Spain and Roger Coulter is on his way to Madrid with the beauiful Sarah to write ‘The Castilian Suite’. Youthful enthusiasm is no match for the harsh realities of life, however, and composing gives way to a hand-to-mouth existence of scalping tickets to the bullfight, pimping in the Barrio Chino, and an eventual return to a life of rowdy gigs in West Indian and Irish bars in London. Tragedy ensues in New York, followed by corruption in Los Angeles before Roger Coulter can return to his dream.

Chapters: 29 plus translations

Pages: 402



The Best of All Possible Worlds-Karen Lord

A proud and reserved alien society finds its homeland destroyed in an unprovoked act of aggression, and the survivors have no choice but to reach out to the indigenous humanoids of their adopted world, to whom they are distantly related. They wish to preserve their cherished way of life but come to discover that in order to preserve their culture, they may have to change it forever.

Now a man and a woman from these two clashing societies must work together to save this vanishing race—and end up uncovering ancient mysteries with far-reaching ramifications. As their mission hangs in the balance, this unlikely team—one cool and cerebral, the other fiery and impulsive—just may find in each other their own destinies . . . and a force that transcends all.

Chapters: 16

Pages: 303

Sex: How to Get More of It-Jodi Ambrose

How can you make your woman happy and also get what you need? Believe it or not, it's not impossible! And it doesn't cost more than a couple of bucks here and there--no trips to Italy or expensive jewelry required.

In this handbook, which I've kept intentionally short and to-the-point, you will get insight into how women think so that you can speak and behave in a way that will reignite her passion for you. To help you with this I've come up with THE LIST which contains 20 easy things you can do to make your relationship happier, more peaceful, and full of love, romance and sex.

Ultimately, women want to feel safe, loved, appreciated and cherished. I'm going to give you the tools you need to help her feel exactly that.

Enjoy the handbook and I hope it helps bring you and your girl joy that will last a lifetime.

PS: Just wanted to give you all fair warning... this book gets down to brass tacks. It's mouthy, sometimes sarcastic and (gasp!) uses an occasional cuss word, but it is also very much from the heart. If you are delicate in nature, be prepared. But if you just want the honest truth about how to be happier with your woman, and don't mind a little feistiness in the process, you are in the right place.

Chapters: 20 plus introduction, list and sum it all up

Pages:  29

Intimacy: How to Get More of It- Jodi Ambrose

Okay ladies, it's about time for you to get what you need and want from your man. If you are ready for more intimacy and happiness in your relationship, then you have come to right place. My goal is to provide you with 20 steps that will help you get the kind of relationship that makes you giggle yourself silly with joy.

Is it more cuddle-time you want? More overall sweetness? Or maybe you are looking to rekindle that spark which, over time, has dimmed a bit? I'm going to give you tips and tricks on how to get all of that, on your own terms.

We're going to get down to brass tacks here, so prepare yourself. We'll talk about body parts, manipulation strategies (that sounds terrible, I know!), picking your battles, learning how to trust and a whole host of other ideas designed to create a happier home life for both you and your man.

Happy wife, happy life. Happy spouse, happy house. We've heard it all before. Now it's time to make it happen! Come along on this journey with me and discover the strategies that will help you get more of what you desire from the love of your life. Enjoy!

Chapters: 20 plus Introduction, the list, sum it all up and author's note

Pages: 52

Darn Good Eats: The Cookbook for Creative Chefs and Reluctant Cooks-Jodi Ambrose

Whether you love to cook or would rather starve than spend time in a kitchen, Darn Good Eats: The Cookbook for Creative Chefs and Reluctant Cooks is for you!

Reluctant Cook and author Jodi Ambrose teamed up with her Creative Chef husband, Grant, to bring you a cookbook with an unusual twist. Darn Good Eats provides scrumptious recipes for both the kitchen aficionado and the bumbling cook. Pooling together all of their combined kitchen savvy, they've created a cookbook that applies to anyone and everyone.

Along with a list of must-have items for your kitchen, helpful measurement conversions, delightful personal anecdotes and a witty sense of humor, this cookbook delivers over 70 delectable and inspired recipes for both the kitchen novice and cooking expert. You no longer have to be a good cook to make great food.

So that it's easy to navigate, the cookbook is split into two parts. The first part is for Creative Chefs who love, or at least like, to cook. It contains tantalizing recipes which range from simple to challenging and are bound to be crowd-pleasers. The second part is for people who prefer eating over cooking and find the kitchen to be more of a chore than a delight. The Reluctant Cook will now have a wonderful array of options for making "homemade" meals that (shhh...don't tell) in some cases are far from homemade, but are still mouthwateringly delicious.

Whether you love or hate the kitchen, Darn Good Eats: The Cookbook for Creative Chefs and Reluctant Cooks has plenty of tasty recipes to please even the most discerning palate. We know that you'll enjoy both the food and fun contained within this cookbook and we wish for you many happy and delicious meals.

Chapters: 71 recipes plus introduction, Dragon-Breath-o-Meter, List of things you'll need, For those who love to cook, for those who hate to cook, weight and measures, in conclusion

Pages: 200
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