01 January 2009

COLUMN: What was in 2008 and what is to come in 2009:

I’m prying my eyes open after a fun filled evening with my husband and brother as we said goodbye to 2008 and greeted the New Year of 2009. It inevitably makes me remember all the ups and downs of 2008. And it was a bit of a rocky road as 2008 started with frequent OB/GYN appointments, this due to the fact I have stubborn ovaries and my husband and I have to rely on In-Vitro-Fertilization (IVF) to create a chance of getting pregnant. It swallows up a lot of time and energy for the both of us and patience on my husband side as hormones rule my body

While I assaulted my body with hormones I always tend to keep myself busy not to go crazy. Well January 2008 commenced with the mile-stone of a two year friendship celebration with Dream-Mistress. We got to know each other as two book-addicts wanting to go to the book-fair in Rotterdam. So of course we had to go for a second time and instead of on a Saturday we now went on openings day. The picture to paint isn’t a pretty one as the tables were stacked with loads of books right up our alley. The craving of the addiction went berserk I tell ya! We went from small baskets going back, groping for the large ones on wheels and piled up dozens of books. My sister Ash tagged along too, and besides having a ball together we crammed about 7-8 bags of books into the mini-car of DM, her daughter and then 2 XL ladies in the back as DM steered us to her home again…oh how the car creaked at every bump and we said a silent prayer hoping to get back in one piece LOL So January 2008 started with a shelf full of new books, and it was just a prologue of the monthly purchases for the rest of the year *VBEG* I don’t think I ever spent so much money on books as I did in 2008.

Besides reading and reviewing I also had my share of things to do for the ROOB website. Ash ceated a whole new look for ROOB in the early months of 2008 and she did a great job IMO! I mainly researched information but also interviewed authors and I loved doing that with the two year anniversary of ROOB as the highlight of 2008. So as the months went by I got into the world of Blogging. Now I did have a Blog on a Dutch site but Pearl talked about the differences and in a spontaneous moment I deleted my old one and set myself up with this Blog. Here is my column about my road trip in Blog world.

The Blog workshop of Pearl remains to this day the foundation of my Blog knowledge LOL I have learned how to work in the Template HTML codes and I played a lot with Photoshop. You can see I love pictures, banners, slideshows and so on, apparently it makes my Blog a little slower to upload but I love the look and feel of it making it truly my home of books, reviews and columns. As the seasons changed I said goodbye to some friends but the ones that remained I got so much closer to! With Pearl and DM it was books that formed the link and it was from that we continued to grow as friends. I still love the weekend we spend at Ash, celebrating her birthday and watching the soccer match Netherlands – Russia! We had such an incredible time and here is an account of that weekend in a Book-Addict Column.

Or the champagne we toasted on our High-Tea in August, I still remember some hunk-a-liscious covers I had to comment on. Four very different gals and our time together is filled with laughter and giggles along with discussions, talk of life, love and everyday happenings. DM, Pearl and Ash, you make my life that much richer because you are all in it *hugs* I know 2009 will be surprising again with all of you, starting with our annual book-fair in Rotterdam!!

Book wise I followed more this year than I actually discovered but all in all I had a very good year in reading. Pearl discovered Lora Leigh, Anna Windsor and Shannon McKenna, these authors were soon added to my bookshelves with many of their novels. I read McKenna’s Behind Closed Doors and I fell head over heels for Seth and his story. This is my review. Lora Leigh gave me a different taste in Erotica novels with her Breeds but also her Nauti cousins made their way to my shelf. This year also has been my first steps into the Erotica scene and I’m now even so far I want to try some M/M gay romance. DM discovered Sherry Thomas, Rona Sharon and Meredith Duran for me and though I haven’t read Meredith Duran yet I know I’ll be entertained. Rona Sharon has stunned me with her two novels: My Wicked Pirate and Once A Rake, I both gave them 4,5 stars, such emotionally riveting stories steeped with a lush background of Historical era’s. I heard from other booklovers that if you love Jennifer Donnelly I might appreciate Paullina Simons with her Tatiana & Alexander and I was blown away with her grand epos of war torn Russia and the heroic love between two people in The Bronze Horseman. I still have to read: Tatiana & Alexander and the last episode in this trilogy, The Summer Garden. I think both will end up read at the end of 2009. My discovery of 2008 was Anne Bishop with her Black Jewel Trilogy, Saetan, Daemon and Lucivar had me at hello and Jaenelle is one dynamite heroine! I still need to read Queen Of Darkness but part one and two were an overwhelming reading experience, Fantasy has definitely come back onto my shelf again thanks to this author!

Of course I read Kathryne Kennedy’s Double Enchantment, C.L. Wilson’s King Of Sword And Sky, Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Acheron, Nalini Singh’s Hostage To Pleasure, Kresley Cole’s back to back of Dark Need’s At Night’s Edge and Dark Desire After Dusk, Karen Moning’s Faefever and many more books that added another episode to a series, chronicle or trilogy in 2008. One author that led me down a bit with her new start of her trilogy is Elizabeth Vaughan’s Daggerstar, that what made her Warprize trilogy so unique is what I missed in Daggerstar. But also Julie Garwood’s Shadow Music made me weep in disappointment. The acclaimed author of novels like Ransom, The Wedding, The Secret let me down with her Historical offering and I gave it two stars.

I received an MBag in November and December from my favorite bookseller Sandi, you can find her at Hard To Find Books The books I really want to read in January are:

* Megan Hart – Tempted (somehow a three-way theme in an Erotica story interests me to no end )
* Sharon Shinn – Archangel
* Portia Da Costa – Gothic Blue
* Elizabeth Amber – Lyon
* Anna Campbell – Tempt The Devil

* Kresley Cole – Kiss Of A Demon King
* Elisabeth Naughton – Stolen Fury
*Shannon McKenna – Edge Of Midnight (Sean’s story, do I need to say more *evil grin*)

But the very first novel I’m reading in 2009 is a golden oldie: Elizabeth Lowell – Untamed. I discovered this novel in my teens and I remember how much I fell in love with Duncan of Maxwell {Forbidden}, Dominic le Sabre {Untamed} and Simon {Enchanted} I wonder if they still have that magical appeal to me after 15 years….

The month January always makes me think of the upcoming year and I remember thinking the same thought in January 2008 and that year went by in the blink of an eye. I hope 2009 holds a few surprises for us in our personal life as I hope my body will cooperate more and leave the headaches and bugs right outside my doorstep! The releases are many again but those I extremely look forward to are:

* Anna Campbell – Tempt The Devil (I hope this one will be on its way to me soon)
* Kresley Cole – Kiss Of A Demon King
* Anne Bishop – The Shadow Queen
* Nalini Singh – Branded By Fire & Angel’s Blood
* Rona Sharon – Royal Blood
* Elizabeth Vaughan – White Star (Yes I haven’t given up on her yet, I know she can deliver!!)
* C.L. Wilson – Queen Of Soul And Song
* Kinley MacGregor – Darkness Within ( A Lords Of Avalon novel)
* Kathryne Kennedy – Enchanting The Beast

And okay, I’m curious what Sherrilyn Kenyon and J.R. Ward are going to deliver with Bad Moon Rising and Lover Avenghed. I have hopes that Lisa Valdez will deliver Patience but who knows…..2008 has come and gone without a novel from her hand. The rest is written in my short wish list.

I will wrap this column up by saying to each and all: “A happy, healthy and magical 2009 for everyone. I hope you’ll frequent this Blog and those of my friends and don’t forget to come by Realms On Our Bookshelves once in a while!! We love to talk the book talk on our forum boards aside from the author interviews and contests you might like to read and enter.


PS: If you want to read another fun-filled column read Pearl's: Goodbye 2008, Hello 2009!!

1 comment:

  1. Great column Leontine!!
    And thanks for linking to mine!!
    Have a great 2009 filled with everything your heart desires, including all those great books we've come to cherish and love, all the frustration followed by satisfaction with the blogs and our friendship that I'll treasure always!!



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