Fanciful Reader

a book blog about romance and more. . .

Month: December, 2010

Books read in December 2010

Here’s what I finished in December 2010. I did a little better than November:

A Season of Seduction by Jennifer Haymore
Unveiled by Courtney Milan
Across the Universe by Beth Revis
Stranger by Zoe Archer
Penny Dreadful by Laurel Snyder
The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley
Seven Nights to Forever by Evangeline Collins

I hope to finish Soulless by Gail Carriger today as well.

I enjoyed all of the above books and hope every reading month is like this!

What about you? Did you read a lot of books you enjoyed this month?

What are you reading over the holidays?

I can’t believe it’s already Christmas Eve!

Because my preschooler’s daycare is closed all of next week, I’ll have several days off from work. Every year when this happens I come up with grandiose decluttering projects which I’ve never finished. Hopefully I’ll be able to do at least one small project around the house.

Also, I plan on doing a lot of reading. Here’s what I hope to finish by January 3rd:

Seven nights to forever by Evangeline Collins
Finished 12/25

The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley Finished 12/24

Guns, Germs and Steel by Jared Diamond

Home for the Holidays by Sarah Mayberry DNF this one and added to bag for Half Price Books. I don’t think Superromances work that well for me.

The Wicked Ways of a Duke by Laura Lee Guhrke

Scandal by Amanda Quick

The Map: Finding the Magic and Meaning in the Story of Your Life by Collette Baron Reid

I think seven books should be enough, especially because Guns, Germs, and Steel is long and dense. I have it for the Kindle so at least I can use the text-to-speech function while I’m puttering around the house.

I’ll come back and update the list for my holiday mini-challenge.

What about you? Do you have time off this holiday season? If so, are you reading more than usual?

Let me wish you a very Merry Christmas, and a peaceful and joyous new year!


Waiting on Wednesday 12/15

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

Here’s what I’m looking forward to this week.

Wedding of the Season: Abandoned at the Altar by Laura Lee Guhkre (whose last name I can rarely spell correctly!) It releases on December 28 and I’ve already pre-ordered it for the Kindle.

Abandoned at the altar . . .

Lady Beatrix Danbury had always known she would marry William Mallory. She’d loved him forever and she’d never doubted he loved her, too. But when she made him choose between their life together or his lifelong dream, Will chose the latter . . . and left two weeks before their wedding.

Return of the duke . . .

Will has no illusions that Beatrix would welcome him back with open arms, but six years did not dim his love or desire for her. The only problem is, she’s about to marry someone else. Someone safe and predictable . . . the complete opposite of Will. But can he stop the wedding of the season and win Beatrix back, or is it just too late?

I’ve only read one book by Laura Lee Guhrke, And then he kissed her, but i have several more in my TBR pile. I also bought a few of her early titles that were re-released as ebooks last month–Breathless, The Charade, and Not So Innocent.

What about you? What are you looking forward to reading this month?

My favorite books of 2010

Here are my top ten reads of 2010–in no particular order:

Lessons in French by Laura Kinsale. This one took me by surprise, because I didn’t like it that much right after I read it. Even though it’s one of the first books I read in 2010, the characters and writing have really stayed with me all year, especially the French hero. I was reminded of this when I started reading The Shadow and the Star a few weeks ago. I’m determined to ignore my out-of-control TBR pile and re-read this sometime.

Nine rules to break when romancing a rake by Sarah Maclean. This was a really funny, hot read!

Flat out sexy by Erin McCarthy. I adored the beta hero, Elec.

Tempt me at twilight by Lisa Kleypas.
I read all the books about the Hathaways this year and this one really stood out as my favorite.

The Lady Julia Grey series by Deanna Raybourn.–I’m cheating a little and counting this as one book. I read books 1-3 and have book #4 on my Kindle. Nicholas Brisbane, need I say more?

Rebel by Zoe Archer. Actually all the books in the Blades of the Rose series but this is my favorite so far.

Unveiled by Courtney Milan. This doesn’t come out until February but I got to read it through Netgalley. Super-swoonworthy hero and beautiful writing!

Drums of Autumn by Diana Gabaldon. I read books 1-4 in the Outlander series this summer, and this one was my favorite because of the rich description of the colonial America setting.

L.A. Cinderella by Amanda Berry. I really enjoyed this plain-Jane accountant meets Hollywood hottie story. It was one of the few books I managed to finish on my summer vacation.

Shopaholic and baby by Sophie Kinsella. I love this series but haven’t kept up with it, so I read this for the first time when I was recovering from my post-summer vacation cold. It also led to a re-read of several other of the Shopaholic books.

What about you?: Are any of the same books on your list of favorites?

A Kindle lover’s review of the Sony PRS-300 ereader

sony prs-300

Since April of this year, I’ve enjoyed reading books on the Kindle. I’m now a total ebook convert and prefer to read digitally whenever possible. The only drawback of the Kindle is that it doesn’t offer epub support, meaning you can’t check out books from libraries that offer digital downloads.

As a professional reader, I decided it was time to invest in an ereader that would read secure epub files from the library as well as egalleys from various publishers. I was considering several models including the Nook, Sony, and the Kobo reader. A few months ago I had entered a contest on Smart Bitches, Trashy Books for the Eat Pray Love edition of the Sony PRS-300. I didn’t win, but remembered just how cute the reader was.

I believe this model is no longer available from Sony because it was a limited edition, but I found it at a decent price on ebay.

I’ve had the Sony PRS-300 for about three weeks, and here are my thoughts on it so far:

The compact size is a definite plus. Unlike the Kindle, it fits into my medium-size everyday purse, though I’m carrying it in a tote bag now. The cute factor is pretty high–in fact when I opened the package my preschooler said “That’s mine!” (I told him that I’d give it to him when learned to read–but we’ll see about that.)

The metal case is very elegant and makes the reader seem more rugged than the Kindle. The PRS-300 comes with a fabric sleeve, and though I have the leather cover, I wouldn’t hesitate to carry the reader in a secure pocket of my purse. The page turn/zoom in-zoom out buttons on the bottom of the screen are placed such that if you close the cover without turning the ereader off, you will find your book opened to a different page or with a different font size the next time you open it.

I look forward to shopping at sites other than Amazon, especially, where they offer their books a month earlier than other bookstores.

The page turns are definitely slower than the Kindle 3, though once you get into reading a book, this is less noticeable.

I already check out ebooks from my local library (Hennepin County, MN) which up until now, I had to read on the Adobe Digital Editions on my computer. I also signed up for an nonresident card at the Free Library of Philadelphia, which as of today costs $15 for 1 year. I received the Free Library of Philadelphia card a few days ago and have already checked out several books. Hennepin County is adding more ebooks every week and Philadelphia already has a good selection, and in many cases more copies per title than Hennepin County.

I’m tempted to upgrade to the newer Sony reader with the Pearl e-ink and touch screen–maybe for my next birthday, which will be in March. For now, I have more than enough books–ebooks and print books–to last me many years. So I really don’t need any new gadgets, just more time to read!

Until next time, thanks for visiting my blog, and happy reading!

Books read in November 2010

1. Scoundrel by Zoe Archer
2. A Christmas Promise by Mary Balogh
3. Rebel by Zoe Archer
4. Impulsive by HelenKay Dimon

Oh my! Did I only read four books? I can’t say what I was busy with all month, except that I’ve been exercising more, which is a very good thing!

I have a goal to spend about an hour reading every day. With a half-hour lunch break at work and another half-hour reading before bed, this should be very doable.

Also I have trouble finding books that really grab me and make me want to keep reading. I finally got my groove back with A Christmas Promise and Rebel this month.

What did you read this month? Was there a book you found recently that had that unputdownable quality? What do you think made it such a compelling read?

Waiting on Wednesday 12/1

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

Here’s what I’m looking forward to this week.

Stranger by Zoe Archer

He protects the world’s magic–with his science. But even the best scientists can fall prey to the right chemistry. . .
Looking For Trouble
Gemma Murphy has a nose for a story–even if the boys in Chicago’s newsrooms would rather focus on her chest. So when she runs into a handsome man of mystery discussing how to save the world from fancy-pants Brit conspirators, she’s sensing a scoop. Especially when he mentions there’s magic involved. Of course, getting him on the record would be easier if he hadn’t caught her eavesdropping. . .

Lighting His Fuse
Catullus Graves knows what it’s like to be shut out: his ancestors were slaves. And he’s a genius inventor with appropriately eccentric habits, so even people who love him find him a little odd. But after meeting a certain redheaded scribbler, he’s thinking of other types of science. Inconvenient, given that he needs to focus on preventing the end of the world as we know it. But with Gemma’s insatiable curiosity sparking Catullus’s inventive impulses, they might set off something explosive anyway. . .

I read the first three books in the Blades of the Rose series and really enjoyed each one. They are very similar in feel to the Indiana Jones movies with the addition of steamy love scenes. The hero of Stranger, Catullus Graves, is featured prominently in book three of the series, Rebel, and it made me really anxious to read his story. As this blog post goes live, I’ll have the book already on my Kindle!