15 June 2009

Column: Birthday's ~ Wishlist ~ Help Wanted & Giveaway

Last weekend we were all summoned to the family mansion in order to celebrate my mother’s birthday. Now that she is a career woman my parents decided they wanted to celebrate big taking the kids out to dinner. Hubby and I packed up early Saturday morning and headed up north to battle with road blocks, traffic jams, four nervous dogs in the back and a hubby high on red bull. It is about a three hour drive, what for most is probably peanuts but in the Netherlands it is quite a drive. I packed Alyssa Day with Atlantis Unmasked and I quickly set myself up for some reading time. Now I never read in the car before but wanted to use these three hours well and with my notebook on my lap and with the book in my hands I started reading. I was quickly submerged in Alexios’ tale and with the second chapter I already found my first quote. Now I tried to pen it in my notebook but writing and driving isn’t the greatest combination. Every time I attempted to scribble something down it looked like some preschooler’s handy work LOL The ultimate moment was when hubby had to break for some a$$hole who cut in front of us and the pen drew a vertical line over the complete page. Glaring at the racing car I focused on Alexios again and by the time we drove up my parent’s driveway I was 90 pages in to the story. YAY for me and working my TRP!

Due to all the traffic jams we were a bit on the late side but in time for candles to be lit on the b-day cake. Now there comes a certain age for a woman not to have candles on her b-day cake anymore and my mother has reached that point. Still, the firefighters who came to the rescue formed one hunk-fest to behold –

I was already flipping my 5 euro bills when my mom elbowed me and apparently I was still high on car fumes, but what a mirage it was LOL

The whole family pitched in for the gift, because when my mother asks for a present you can bet it costs top dollar. Not that she isn’t simply happy with all of her kids dropping by but when it comes to her wish list she has expensive taste. We got her the best gift ever…an envelop with spending money. She has her eyes on a mall in Germany which exists exclusively out of interior design shops where she can go from dark emerald green accessories to burgundy red accessories in the house. A day of carefree shopping, now what woman, on any given age, doesn’t want that? I wouldn’t object for sure, give me a Barnes & Noble’s or Borders and a bucket of money and I am a very happy camper *wink*

Now going home means suddenly ancient rules go in to effect. I absolutely abhor doing the dishes, this is something that has become the task of hubby ~spoiled witch that I am~ but at home it is a golden rule; No one does the dishes just by him or herself, a rule born from the fact of eating with 7-9 peeps LOL. So when dad was doing the dishes I offered my help – I’m still shaking my head in disbelief - like I don’t have enough siblings to take care of that. And as oldest, you can pull rank, yes you can, I’m serious. No revenge of the middle sister going on in our family, no brother pulling pranks, nah-ah, I’ve got them all obedient and in awe of me….well, okay, in another lifetime perhaps LOL Rules like; Shoes go at a certain place, bed is made up in the morning and bathroom etiquette is maintained at all times. After living with my hubby for 13 years now my parent’s house rules are still golden and go in to effect from the moment I step over the threshold of their mansion.

Of course we had a blast during dinner, a little too much to eat, some men drank a little too much and of course stories as old as time got dragged from a past so long ago they are probably written in stone. I tried to be the family's photographer but unlike Ken, Barbie and their friends in my childhood times they do not sit, position and smile when I want them to…it is a nightmare to take a decent shot but I still luurve them all *wicked grin*

So as the birthday rush of my mother subsides the realization hits that my own birthday is about ten weeks away. Ten weeks when I hit the thirty-three years marker and my body cringes a bit…thirty-one and thirty-two years was like: Hey, I’m a young and hip gal in my early thirties but now thirty-three comes which isn’t all that far from thirty-five *eek* I made a promise to myself to love any age and see the challenge in each year but I have to get used to being thirty-three *cheeky grin* So in the upcoming weeks I have to establish a wish list for my family and friends to use but as a reader with about 700 books it becomes harder and harder to find new treasures, aside from keeping up with current series on the shelves….

So this is where you all come in with a HELP WANTED add from my side:

~Are you a voracious reader of any given age?

~Are you familiar with the historical/fantasy/suspense/paranormal/erotica romance genre?

~Is your secret identity that of a P.I. when it comes to finding wonderful (debuting) authors?

~You have knowledge of where the dark brooding, neanderthal like gentleman, uber hunk with bulging muscles and a bedroom athlete congregate?

~You think you can add something new to my bookshelves?

~You have qualities like; being susceptible to bribery. Because in return for your effort I will give a copy of an upcoming release of one of my favorite romance authors up as prize for any who can give me leads on new books and authors.

Please, feel free to leave me a message with your author and title who you think isn’t supposed to be missed on my golden-edged wish list *wink*

TIP: Historical romance novels demand an unusual storyline in the tradition of Anna Campbell, Sherry Thomas & Lisa Valdez. Ballroom display to a minimum for I have the Bar Cynster’s who keep me occupied there more than enough LOL

TIP: Fantasy needs a romantic element in them since my body demands that chocolate bliss in the end of a HEA, whether it takes one-two or five books!

The prize – which makes me feel like: come over to the dark side, we’ve got cookies – is: Nalini Singh – Branded By Fire (Berkley Sensation July)

The winner will be drawn on June 30th and a copy will be send upon release date. I look forward to all of your recommendations!

post signature


  1. Hey Hon..

    Love the challenge - as you know i read a little of everything.. i recently read a wonderful new author, first book off the presses..

    Rebecca J.Vickery - Surviving with Love - simply wonderful... I total change from the smut i was used to and it had a honest to goodness plot, with character who were sensible and with very high code of honour..

    I have a whole slew of authors - I'll start a list for you...

    But that one was a real surprise..

    Love, the post - looking forward to the next time you have you have to go up to the castle...


  2. I haven't read them yet and they are on my own wishlist too but I hear Rhyannon Byrd has a new trilogy out in a series called PRIMAL INSTINCT:

    Edge of Hunger
    Edge of Danger
    Edge of Desire

    Check them out! I think you will like these too...


  3. Well, my mind is on this romantic fantasy series at the moment. I'm reading the second book now and am completely fascinated with how the author is showing the differences between her two peoples. It's sad but so good in the story telling. So if you haven't read the Warlands trilogy by Elizabeth Vaughan, I would highly recommend them...


  4. Here are a few of my suggestions for authors to try out:
    Judi Fennell - In Over Her Head
    Linda Robertson - Vicious Circle
    Diana Rowland - Mark of the Demon

  5. Have you tried..

    Colleen Gleason - Gardella Vampire Chronicles,

  6. I would have to say Frances Stockton. She has ebooks at Cerridwen Press. She held a contest and posted excerps from her books and I was hooked. I don't normally like historicals but with these I was hooked. I ordered both of the ebooks that day.

    The 1st one is Seductive Persuasion and the 2nd one is Rhiannon's Pride. They are about a shifter family that is very ancient. I really liked them and she is the nicest person ever.

    BTW - Love Nalini and you can't leave off JR Ward's BDB series.

  7. Hi E.H.,
    Now I am intrigued to say the least and will definitely hook me up with some info on her. I will scour your blog for a review! Thanks for the rec *hugs*

    Hi pearl,
    I came across these books when flipping through my RT magazine but I never looked at the trilogy more closer, now I have one more reason to go lurking on the net LOL Thanks BFF :D

    Amy C,
    I hooked myself up with Vaughan about 1,5 years ago. Was ecstatic about her Warprize trilogy. The dancing, the love, the epic journey, food for the romance fantasy reader. Just like CL Wilson *wink* It proves you've got good taste so keep the recs coming, thanks Amy C!

    Welcome LadyVampire2U,
    Your recs are all new to me...how utterly wonderful *cheeky grin* I think I'll plan an afternoon of working some Google magic ;-)

    Hi Heather B,
    Welcome to you too and you've also given me a new name that will make me fire up the www. I'm looking forward to it all *wicked laughter*

    and JR Ward is already and integral part of my bookshelves. Love me some Wrath *wink*

  8. Burning Wild by Christine Feehan
    Coyote's Mate by Lora Leigh
    Jude's Law by Lori Foster

    I think these authors can't be missed.

  9. Hey Leontine! Sounds like you had a fun roadtrip. Ack! You get stuck with the dishes too at your folks house?!? Always happens to me. Doing dishes is so not my favorite thing and everytime I'm at my parent's for dinner, somehow I get stuck doing them!

    Anyway, onto the challenge. You read pretty much all my favorite genres and authors so I'm hard-pressed to offer you a new one. Hmmm....Charlotte Featherstone is an amazing historical author. And don't worry, I've yet to read a ballroom scene of hers. She writes for HQN Spice (I love this line) so you're guarenteed something unique, hot, and well written. I recommend 'Addicted'. Very good. Very emotional. Very HOT!

    ;) VFG

  10. I'm just starting Sarah Parr's debut historical romance 'Renegade'. I'm only a couple of chapters into it, but so far, so good.

  11. Have you tried Ilona Andrew's "Magic" series? It's quite good and has some fantastic tension between the two leads. Also, the lead gentleman is yummy and frequently displays neanderthal qualities and side character sub-plots are interesting too! :)

    Magic Bites
    Magic Burns
    Magic Strikes
    Magic Mourns (Forthcoming short story about fun side characters)
    Magic Bleeds

    Also, she's coming out with a new series that sounds interesting too...
    On the Edge


  12. Hi Sarah,
    the lead gentleman is yummy and frequently displays neanderthal qualities

    *nods feverishly with head* yes yes, that is what I am looking for. The name rings a bell but haven’t read one single thing of her. will check her out!!

    Hi SarahT,
    I saw the cover of Sarah Parr's Renegade in the RT magazine but haven't checked her out either. Isn't she a Zebra debut...love those prices to try out an author!

  13. I recommend Broken Wing by Judith James. I just read it a few days ago - it was so fun. Couldn't stop reading!

    gaby317nyc AT gmail DOT com

  14. Hey Leontine,

    I loved the column - it was good craic, as the irish would say ;-).

    It was a bit of a challenge but I went on the internet in search for some nice new books to put on your list and came up with the following, which I think, knowing you, you would appreciate greatly:

    Jillian Cantor - The September Sisters & The life of Glass
    Sarah Reese Brennan - The Demon's Lexicon
    Lyn Benedict - Sins & Shadows
    Tammy Kane - Breath of Fire
    Diana Rowland - Mark of the Demon
    Paolo Giordano - The solitude of prime numbers
    Margaret Mallory - Knight of Desire
    Evangeline Collins - Her Ladyship's companion
    Jess Michaels - Taboo
    Lilly Feisty - Bound to Pleasure
    Pamela Montgomery - Sapphire Dream

    I could have go on in my search but my own addiction started rearing it's wicked head so I had to stop to prevent ordering new books in from amazon!

    Don't shoot me if there are too many on the list to ur liking - you know I too am an addict so I can't help it *grins widely* I hope you'll be able to get a great b-day list together!!!

    Natascha / Ashleagh

  15. I'm so late answering replies laying a peace offering in front of the latest entries*

    Gaby-> When I was send the ARC of Highland Rebel by Judith James I remembered her when DM gave her shout out about this author. So I had on out to my online bookstore and bought me a copy of Broken Wing. I am very intrigued to say the least what this author has to bring to the historical genre...I've heard a lot of kudos going her way :D Thanks for the rec!

    Leave it up to you to not come with two or three books but with a list that triggers my overindulgent side LOL I have no doubt I'll pull a book or two from it and place it on my b-day list. I've heard good things regarding Lilly Feisty / Diana Rowland / Jess Michaels / Tammy Kane...I still have a week or two before i deliver my final wishlist *wink*

  16. Two new series I'm hooked on are Jennifer Lyon's Wing Slayer Hunters with Blood Magic as the first book, and Pamela Palmer's Feral Warriors.
    And if you like vampires there are Lara Adrian's Midnight Breeds

  17. Have you tried the Morganville Vampire series by Rachel Caine? I'm really enjoying it, The first is Glass House, second Dead girls dance, third Midnight Alley. I think there are about 3 more out in the series but those are the 3 I've read so far.


I love to hear all your voices and opinions so thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.