Saturday, October 29, 2016

Review: Burning Bright by Melissa McShane

Burning Bright Burning Bright by Melissa McShane
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I was extraordinarily surprised by how much I ended up liking this book. The concept of certain abilities being common place and having a sort of 'ranking' system for them was pretty fun to read about. I also really loved the interaction of an unattached female during this time period as well as a female in the Navy and on ships during this period. It seemed really accurate from what I know about history and it was fun to read about.

I really love the relationship between Elinor and Miles. They started out very rocky and moved from that to a nice friendship. This was also a romance novel of old, by that I mean none of the explicit descriptions that are common in many romance stories today. You barely even get a kiss out of the couple but I never once missed it. Overall an excellent story and I will happily continue reading this series!

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Saturday, October 22, 2016

Review: Ria's Visions by Laura Jo Phillips

Ria's Visions Ria's Visions by Laura Jo Phillips
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I am a big fan of this series! I love Laura Jo Phillips characters and the worlds that she has built. I am continuously surprised that she can give us such unique couples without repeating dynamics of previous characters. I will admit that I had some reservations going into the reading of this book. The previous novel about Vari was so good and her character's problems were so unique that I couldn't picture what we knew about Ria from that story into a character that I would be able to fall in love with.

But she was. Ria has such a different perspective, being the middle daughter when her older and younger sisters needed so much more attention from their parents. Her first 'meeting' of her Rami was also so extremely emotionally traumatizing that it was amazing she was still willing to let them near her. I did absolutely LOVE that Ms. Phillips brought a Brun back into the stories. What could be better than a sentient wolf and her cubs. So cute! And her [sentient wolf, Star] interaction and relationship with Ria was so strong and necessary to Ria's growth as a person that it was a great read.

I am still sucked into these stories and have the feeling of wanting to go back and re-read all the past stories after each one. I have no idea how Ms. Phillips is going to present a new heroine, which I am assuming will be the youngest sister, and still keep the plotline of the Doftle moving forward since that particular sister is not on the two year trip that our characters are currently on, but I am seriously looking forward to finding out!

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Saturday, October 15, 2016

Review: Forgotten Visions by Lia Davis

Forgotten Visions Forgotten Visions by Lia Davis
My rating: 0 of 5 stars

I thoroughly enjoyed this book! It has been a long time since I've found a paranormal romance story that involved witches that I've actually liked. Ms. Davis introduced plenty of interesting characters that were in the middle of their lives from the get go. I was a bit thrown at first when I thought the characters were about 18 or 19 years old, and I'm REALLY sick of romances with characters that are so extremely young. But I was pleasantly surprised to find that they were in their late twenties/early thirties and still living with family because that's what powerful witch coven families did.

I also really enjoyed the Divinity versus witch distinction and the crazy demon-villains were great. Kalissa and Ayden's interactions were wonderful and both of their powers were covet-worthy. This leads really nicely into what should be a fun, easy to read series. I've actually already pre-ordered the next book in the series which comes out soon.

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Saturday, October 8, 2016

October Re-Readathon

This month I've been giving my eyes a bit of a break from devices and going back to re-read some of my favorites that I still have on the book shelf.  This time it's some of what I consider the best of the Breeds series by Lora Leigh.
Image result for lora leigh breeds seriesImage result for lora leigh breeds seriesImage result for lora leigh breeds seriesImage result for lora leigh mercury's war

Now I don't in any way claim that there are in the correct reading order and they are certainly NOT in close to being all of the books in this series.  There are some like 20 plus books and short stories.  These are just four of my favorites.  I really love the couples in all 4 of these novels.  They each have unique personalities and the situations they are dealing with are great.  I do think that Coyote's Mate is probably my favorite though.  I don't know if it's because it's about a Coyote Breed or because they teased this couple in book 3 or 4 of the series and then it was years later that their story actually was published!

Breeds Series
  • Tempting the Beast (Breeds #1) (Feline #1)
  • The Man Within (Breeds #2) (Feline #2)
  • Elizabeth’s Wolf (Breeds #3) (Wolf #4)
  • Kiss of Heat (Breeds #4) (Feline #3)
  • Soul Deep (Breeds #5) (Feline #4)
  • *The Breed Next Door (Breeds #6)
  • Megan’s Mark (Breeds #7)
  • Harmony’s Way  (Breeds #8)
  • Tanner’s Scheme (Breeds #9)
  • *Wolf’s Hope (Breeds #10) (Wolf #1)
  • Jacob’s Faith (Breeds #11) (Wolf #2)
  • Aiden’s Charity (Breeds #12) (Wolf #3)
  • *In a Wolf’s Embrace (Breeds #13)
  • Dawn’s Awakening (Breeds #14)
  • A Jaguar’s Kiss (Breeds #15)
  • Mercury’s War (Breeds #16)
  • *Christmas Heat (Breeds #17)
  • Coyote’s Mate (Breeds #18)
  • Bengal’s Heart (Breeds #19)
  • *A Christmas Kiss (Breeds #20)
  • Lion’s Heat (Breeds #21)
  • Styx’s Storm (Breeds #22)
  • *Primal Kiss (Breeds #23)
  • Navaro’s Promise (Breeds #24)
  • *An Inconvenient Mate (Breeds #25)
  • Lawe’s Justice (Breeds #26)
  • Stygian’s Honor (Breeds #27)
  • *The Devil’s Due (Breeds #28)
  • Rule Breaker (Breeds #29)
  • Bengal’s Quest (Breeds, #30)
*Denotes short story/ novella

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Make Your Own Dog House!

My that I have a backyard of my own, I've been wanting to make a dog house that will fit a specific spot on my back patio.  I also wanted it to have a flat roof to use for storage and a hinged lid to easy access.

With the help of some scrap 2 x 4, a 2 x 2 and 2 sheets of plywood from the hardware store I was able to make my vision a reality.  I measured the space I wanted my dog house to fit carefully and started by making a frame with my 2 x 4s.  I found a local hardware store that would deliver wood at a decent price and was able to get 2 sheets of plywood.  I started by cutting the 'floor' board, the back wall and one of the sides.  I used some spare clear wood seal on each piece as I was cutting, and screwed things together as they dried. This gave me a nice break between all the measuring, cutting, painting, and re-charged my power drill. 

After fitting the first 2 wall pieces together I came to the conclusion that  I needed a better way to screw the walls together than trying to screw into the 1/2 of the plywood.  This made me dig out the scrap 2 x 2 that I had cut that to fit each corner.  The 2nd plywood created the other 2 walls and the roof.  After determining the measurements of where I wanted the hole for the entrance, I recruited the help of my brother-in-law to actually cut the hole since I didn't have the correct tools for it.  After attaching the 4th wall in place and painted it purple using some spare black paint to paint on windows.  I purchased some adhesive linoleum tiles for the bottom (they're pretty and I think will hold some extra 'coolness' for my dog).  Once all that was done I moved the house into place, lined up the roof and attached it with my hinges.  I chose to attach black plastic to the roof to help with moisture and got some extra shingles to cover the roof.  There was a gap in the back since the hinges need room, I used some scrap 4 inches pieces of wood, painted them black then mounted them to make the 'peak' of the roof and cover the gap. 

All in all it took a couple of weekends of work since there was a lot of painting and cutting but overall was fairly simple and the end product is exactly the custom made, perfect fit that I wanted.  Not bad considering I made the design up myself!