That’s a crime

March 30, 2010 § Leave a comment

As mentioned in an earlier post, I am not really into trying out new authors unless I trust the person who recommended him or her to me. At a moment of weakness and boredom, however, I came upon this book and was glad I took the time to open it. I’ve not researched Jillian Hoffman, so I don’t really know much about her, only that this particular book was an enjoyable read. I’m a big fan of CSI, Bones and Criminal Minds so the plot was nothing new to me. The thing that made this book difficult to put down was the kind of emotion Hoffman puts into her characters. They’re not the canned criminal and victim stereotypes but are real people caught in unusual circumstances. I’m not out to hoard all of Hoffman’s books yet but I would definitely pick her up again when given the chance.

Once upon a time, there was such a thing as happily ever after

March 19, 2010 § Leave a comment

This is old-school romance at its best. Girl meets boy and they hate each other but they find themselves married for the sake of a kingdom. Love, hate, betrayal and a happy ending like no other is what you will find in A Kingdom of Dreams. This, after Paradise, is my favorite novel from Judith McNaught. I love how the innocence of Jennifer Merrick chips away at the hard-hewn exterior of Royce Westmoreland and finally lands her right smack in the middle of his life and heart. In anybody else’s hands this would have been one of those bodice-ripper novels where, since everyone knows they just have to end up together, all the details that make up the story would have been mere background. But with Judith McNaught, no story is a story unless it’s made up of an engaging cast of characters you fall in love with even as you sit enthralled at how on earth the main characters could ever get together with everything against this possibility. This was one of those books I started to read right before bedtime and ended up almost missing school for. So I suggest you devote an entire weekend to reading this one. Make sure you’ve got the tissues and chocolates within arm’s reach when you do.

Judith, My Love

March 7, 2010 § Leave a comment

I can’t believe it’s been more than two decades since I read this book and discovered what love could be like, in Utopia, according to Judith McNaught. Whitney should have sounded like a ninny, what with her attempts to catch the attention of a bemused Paul. Going as far as suffering some time abroad to polish her social skills and come back as a real lady Paul could fall for. Her impoverished father lays waste to her plans, marrying her off to a Duke. I know, I know – drivel. But Judith McNaught has the amazing ability to turn the most unlikely of characters into a charming heroine you could so easily relate to. And while the chances of your meeting a Duke might be close to nil, you just can’t help but dream that one day one would find you and fall so deeply in love that he would accept you, torn stockings and all, to whisk you away to his castle while the sun lazily sets in the horizon.

Singletons of the world, unite!

March 4, 2010 § Leave a comment

Reasonably attractive, highly intelligent and gainfully employed. So why are we still single? I’m taking Bridget Jones’s angle and saying: Because men are idiots. They never recognize the good stuff right under their nose becuase they’re either too busy making sure their insecurities are not showing or picking up their jaw where it dropped on the floor when that busty blonde walked past. There are all kinds of women out there and sometimes you wonder, how come she’s married and I’m not? But then you see the comedy of errors that is relationships and you think, I dodged the bullet. So here’s to all the singletons out there. We’re not always happy about our weight and most of our Friday nights are spent at home alone, snuggled under the covers with a good book. You might as well have a funny woman you can relate to for company.

What dreams may come

March 1, 2010 § Leave a comment

I’ve always been fascinated by mythologies of the world. They reflect the psyche that made us who we are today. And when good writers such as Neil Gaiman and Sherrilyn Kenyon are able to use the reader’s knowledge of mythology to weave a completely new story, you’re assured of quite a few hours of riveted reading. When I was in high school, my sister used to bring borrowed Sandman graphic novels home but I never read through them since in my intellectually snobbish days I just thought of them as “comics”. It was only when I started working for a publishing company and a colleague lent me her copy of American Gods that I discovered the appeal of Neil Gaiman. For a few hours, he draws you into a world so unlike your own that you find yourself both repulsed and fascinated by it. These are worlds you like to visit and explore but are glad you can leave after putting the book down. He’s the kind of writer I want to sit down with and talk shop over a cup of coffee. I’d love to get the chance to pick his brain, literally, and wade through it’s dark, twisted mess. And who wouldn’t? This is a guy after all whose book is prefaced by someone who says people become writers for the opportunity to become god makers.

Reality Bites!

February 27, 2010 § Leave a comment

I admit I am a romantic, but I cannot understand why women fall for Mr. Darcy. Thus, I got intrigued by these books. “Mr. Darcy’s Diary” tells his side of the story of Pride and Prejudice. Maybe it’s his gentlemanly ways? Hmm. “Me and Mr. Darcy” on the other hand is more realistic. If Mr. Darcy lives in our time, he will definitely be a standout (or out of place). One thing is sure though, when the right guy comes at the right time, he is definitely not a Mr. Darcy.

I’m falling in laugh with you

February 24, 2010 § Leave a comment

I confess to one tiny weakness: I find romance novels irresistible. This addiction began in my freshman year in high school when we demure Catholic school girls passed around battered copies of Judith McNaught, Johanna Lindsey and Jude Devereaux. Back then, Fabio graced the covers of Johanna Lindsey’s novels and we guiltily gobbled up what was then considered very racy love scenes. As my tastes in literature grew more . . . er . . . sophisticated, the romance aisles of bookstores still called to me and I could never resist their allure. Come on, be honest. Who wouldn’t want to be that plain Jane some gorgeous hunk of a man would go to the ends of the earth for, even for just a few hours and only on the pages of a book? And then one of the unShelved lent me her copy of Susan Elizabeth Phillips’s Nobody’s Baby But Mine and I discovered a writer who taught me that falling in love was more Pineapple Express than the Love Affair to Remember. I love SEP’s sense of humor, the way she mixes the bizarre with the every day (one pair meets while the girl is wearing a beaver costume, more about that later). Best of all, she makes me believe a football player (mind you, I find American football painful to watch) trumps Fabio in the romantic hero department. This is one author that brings truth to the wish “Happy reading.”

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