Wednesday, December 18, 2013

WWW Wednesdays - Dec. 18 Edition

Here's the answers to this week meme's from Should Be Reading's blog. Feel free to leave your comments with the answers to these questions and be sure to check out their blog as well for other's answers.

To play along, just answer the following three (3) questions in the comment section or in your own blog then link it from the comments.

• What are you currently reading?
• What did you recently finish reading?
• What do you think you’ll read next?

I know I haven't done one of these in quite some time.  I'll try to do better next year.  I look forward to seeing your answers below!

What are you currently reading?

This is a two-fer.  I'm reading two different books at the same time.  One is a re-read, which is the book I reviewed yesterday - Stormlord Rising.   I was halfway through it the second or third time now when I wrote the review.

Then the new book I purchased - Laura Chapman's Hard Hats and Doormats.  I have to say I'm enjoying this book and definitely lives up to what I expected her work to be like.  If you haven't had a chance to pick this book up yet, it's available in the Nook store for $2.99 and will be available for print purchase soon.  If you like romances, definitely check this out.

What did you recently finish reading?

This will be a short answer. I recently finished The Last Stormlord just before I wrote the review.  It was my second read through and I was reading it a second time because I wanted to catch some of the things I knew i missed in the first read through.

What do you think you'll read next?

That's a hard question to answer this time.  I have seven new books to pick from.  I guess we'll find out next week.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Review: Stormlord Rising by Glenda Larke

This review is for the second book in the Watergiver series, titled Stormlord Rising, and is the book that contains more action and meat and potatoes of the story than the first book.

By the end of the first book, the Quartern is at war, the surviving Breccia rainlords are either enslaved or on the run, Terelle is headed with her grandfather to Khromantis and the dune tribes are planning raids and attacks in their attempt to rid the world of water sensitives and return to a time of "random rain".

137 pages into the book and I hit a segment that really stood out to me - that really defines the character Laisa and how underhanded and manipulative she is.

...he asked, "Laisa, if you wanted to gain ascendancy over an enemy too strong to be defeated in battle, how would you do it?" 
She turned her head to look at him.  So cat-like, he thought.  Bruised but sated. 
"That's easy," she said.  "Take hostage what he loves most in the world: his lover, his child, his land his wealth, his power, whatever.  The trick is to find out what he values most.  Then you will have your enemy in the palm of your hand." 
A slow smile lifted his lips as her words seeded the beginnings of an idea.  "of course.  Why didn't I think of that."

That segment means a lot to the rest of the book and the series and tells a lot about not only Laisa, but Taquar as well.  They will stoop as low as they have to to get exactly what they want from a person.  It should have also told Taquar that Laisa wasn't to be trusted, and I think he knew that on some level, but didn't take it to heart.

Jasper (Shale Flint) is full grown and back in the hands of Taquar in this book.  Terelle has escaped and not been able to be tracked by Taquar.  Jasper pines after her, but does his duty as the existing stormlord and with the help of Taquar, continues to bring water to the Quartern.

Similar to the first book, the story jumps back and forth between those in Scarcleft, to Terelle and Russet making their way to Khromantis, to Vera Redmane in the dunes tribes, and to Garnet/Ryka, Kaneth, Elmar and Ravard - who is actually Shale's brother Mica who he thinks is deceased.

The story flows smoother and there are more definitive cut off points - logical places where the story shifts to another part of the story and it makes the transitions smoother than the transitions in the first book.

As I try not to spoil too much of the story (which I may have spoiled a bit above), the war within the Quartern is brought to a partial end by the end of the book, Shale and Mica know each other are alive but are going down very different paths, Ryka has her baby and many other things are discovered and the book has an ending that closes that part of the story and segues into the next book smoothly.

Even though there are plenty of unfinished stories left, the book ends in a good way to make you want to find out how things end in the third book.

This book receives 4 out of 5 stars.  I feel the writing is much improved in this book and the story flows smoother - perhaps due to the fact that all the world building and character defining happened in the first book and didn't have to happen in this book.

If you struggled through reading the first book, I strongly encourage you to read this one as it will give you a better understanding into the first book and why it is the way it is.

You can learn more about Glenda Larke here:
On twitter @glendalarke
On facebook as Glenda Larke
and blogging at

Monday, December 16, 2013

Musing Mondays - Dec. 16, 2013 Edition

Here's today's Musing Monday's as posted by Should Be Reading's blog.

Musing Mondays asks you to muse about one of the following each week…
• Describe one of your reading habits.
• Tell us what book(s) you recently bought for yourself or someone else, and why you chose that/those book(s).
• Tell us what you’re reading right now — what you think of it, so far; why you chose it; what you are (or, aren’t) enjoying with it.

This week, I think I'll go with what book(s) I recently bought for myself and why I chose that/those book(s).

I actually recently purchased a bunch of books, including some from a Facebook group (where I got 5 hardcover books for $5), others from A Novel Idea bookstore, and then Laura Chapman's book, Hard Hats and Doormats, for my Nook.

So let's start with the easiest one for me to define why I bought it.  That would be Hard Hats and Doormats.  I bought it simply because I know Laura, I worked with her for several years and would like to see her earn something for her efforts.  I'm sure I will enjoy the book and look forward to getting to read it.

Next was the collection of 5 books I picked up for $5 from the LinConsign sale group on Facebook.  Those books were:

  • Best Kept Secrets by Sandra Brown
  • Lisey's Story by Stephen King
  • Hey, Good Looking by Fern Michaels
  • Origin in Death by Nora Roberts
  • The Sexy Years by Suzanne Somers
Now, to be honest, these were purchased because I knew all but one of the authors and read books by each of the authors, so I figured these new books would be something good to read.  I haven't touched them yet, but I intend to.

And finally the books I picked up from A Novel Idea, which were: 
  • Dark War by Glen Cook
  • A Cruel Wind by Glen Cook

And these were because they were parts of series by Glen Cook I haven't read yet and want to.

If you haven't read the Black Company series by Glen Cook, I strongly encourage you to.

Thanks for joining me today on Musing Mondays.  Feel free to leave your answers to the meme here.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Review: The Last Stormlord by Glenda Larke

I want to start this book review off with a little bit of an intro into it.  I picked up the last book in the series first and read it and immediately wished I had realized it was a series and picked up the first two at the same time.  Unfortunately, I think when I grabbed it, I didn't pay close enough attention that it was the third in the series.

That being said, book three can, sort of, stand by itself.  You miss the back stories of the characters, but things flow smoothly if you read it first like I did.  I ended up getting the first and second book on the Nook and am now reading through them a second time, which is why I've decided to go ahead and review them - in order - since I have all three.

The Last Stormlord is book #1 in the Watergivers series and is perhaps the hardest of the three books to read.  You are thrown into a fantasy, desert world where life-giving/saving water is distributed to the land by an old and dying "Stormlord."

The world is populated, sparsely, with individuals who can detect or move water.  The lesser of these are reeves and they monitor the water in cisterns and distribution within a city.  Then there are rainlords who can sense water around them to varying degrees and move it.  Then stormlords.

Unfortunately, the last stormlord is dying and the plot of the story focuses on a search for water sensitive youths.

The story jumps between three different areas - the city of Breccia where the dying Stormlord and a number of rainlords live, the city of Scarcleft (sp?) and the Gibber Quarter where the future stormlord and main character of the three books is found.

The book jumps not only between stories of sets of characters and locations, but also in chunks of time.  Several times in the stories months and years jump past, which you may not catch right away if you aren't paying attention to the headers of the story and the locations.

Ultimately, the first book in this series is a lot of world building, introducing us to multiple protagonists and antagonists, telling the back story and launching into the start of the ultimate stories.  It can be a bit hard to get into and to understand if you aren't expecting a thought provoking read.  And this would be why I give this book out of the series a 3 out of 5 star rating.  While world building is important, the way things jump around, the length of time it takes to build the world and the way it's built are not ideal.

That being said, if you are looking for a book that has both strong female and male protagonists and interesting antagonists along with a harsh world, I strongly suggest reading it because the books get better after you get through the first book and things will make more sense.

You can learn more about Glenda Larke here:
On twitter @glendalarke
On facebook as Glenda Larke
and blogging at

Thursday, December 12, 2013

New Blog Project - Facebook Marketing Hints and Tips

I've been working on (and off) on another blog project which has unofficially launched as of yesterday.

This blog is a new endeavor meant to help educate people on how to market themselves or their product or service via Facebook pages in an effective manner.  The blog will have at least one post a week, but likely more, and is intended to not only provide hints, but to teach things about Facebook - such as terminology used, etc. - that most people don't understand.

I invite you to check it out here.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Congratulations Ms. Chapman!

Today marks an important date for a former co-worker and colleague - Ms. Laura Chapman.  Today marks the release of her first published novel Hard Hats and Doormats.  Later this month, she will be published in a Christmas anthology as well.
Lexi Burke has always been a stickler for following rules and procedures. As a human resources manager for a leading Gulf Coast chemical company, it’s her job to make sure everyone else falls in line, too.  
But after losing out on a big promotion–-because her boss sees her as too much of a yes-woman––Lexi adopts a new policy of following her heart instead of the fine print. And her heart knows what it wants: Jason Beaumont, a workplace crush who is off limits based on her previous protocol. 
While navigating a new romance and interoffice politics, Lexi must find the confidence to stand on her own or face a lifetime of following someone else’s orders.  
Who says nice girls have to finish last?

Hard Hat and Doormats is available for your eReaders on:
Barnes & Noble:

It will be available in print on Amazon soon, but you can order it now – and for a discount – at Marching Ink

Laura has  number of things going on for the launch of her book including an online launch party, found here, and other things you can read about on her blog Change the Word.

Congratulations, Laura.  I look forward to reading your book!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

November Escaped Me

No posts this past month - and it definitely wasn't my intention -  but a lot of things were going on - and still are going on.

I was part of a huge security update/upgrade of computer systems in our office and a lot of time was spent on that project, both during and outside of work and culminated in a weekend of work - 10 days working straight - to finish the project.  There are still some lingering issues, but all will be resolved soon enough.

But let me tell you, that was quite an undertaking.

It does look like there will be more downtime for me - more downtime as in reading a lot due to some medical issues.  But that may give me time to do some reviews too.

I've got another blog that will be opening up soon as well as a couple other projects which i will be posting about later this day/week/month respectively.