Tuesday, April 25, 2017

23.99 For The Kindle Edition??? Ma Speaks Up: And a First-Generation Daughter Talks Back - by Marianne Leone

Product DetailsThe acclaimed actress and author of Jesse: A Mother’s Story tells the story of her outspoken, frequently outrageous Italian immigrant mother.
Marianne Leone’s Ma is in many senses a larger-than-life character, one who might be capable, even from the afterlife, of shattering expectations. Born on a farm in Italy, Linda finds her way to the United States under dark circumstances, having escaped a forced marriage to a much older man, and marries a good Italian boy. She never has full command of English, especially when questioned by authorities, and when she is suddenly widowed with three young children, she has few options. To her daughter’s horror and misery, she becomes the school lunch lady.
Ma Speaks Up is a record of growing up on the wrong side of the tracks, with the wrong family, in the wrong religion. Though Marianne’s girlhood is flooded with shame, it’s equally packed with adventure, love, great cooking, and, above all, humor. The extremely premature birth of Marianne’s beloved son, Jesse, bonds mother and daughter in ways she couldn’t have imagined. The stories she tells will speak to anyone who has struggled with outsider status in any form and, of course, to mothers and their blemished, cherished girls.



 This book actually made me angry. When I chose to read this I figured this was going to be right up my alley. Nope. I was never as spoiled and selfish as this woman was. I would never have thought to talk to my mother or any of my family in this manner. I am a daughter of a second generation Italian father and Hungarian Mother. I am about the same age as the author. I grew up in the same type of ethnic neighborhood as the author and the house as my Hungarian Greats and Grands and an Aunt and Uncle. The Italian Greats, Grand etc lived a few houses down. I never felt shame for any of my family, lest of all my mother, for what she was and how she behaved. Not did I feel for any shame that my grandparents couldn't speak proper English or hold better jobs than what they found. My friends grew up the same way (and so did the author's), what the heck is there to be ashamed about???

I can't get over that this book is trying to make this out as a 'poor me -I am growing up different from everyone' book. Marianne Leone grew up exactly as everyone else in her ethnic neighborhood, she was NOT different and to use this as an excuse to take it out on her mother was a travesty.

This synopsis is totally misleading. The mother never speaks and there is no humor in this book, the author was not an outsider.

This book started off interesting and went downhill to the point that at 75% I was skimming.

The best part of this book was the three recipes at the end.
ATTL supplied ARC

Saturday, April 22, 2017

White Hot (book 2) by Ilona Andrews

White Hot by Ilona Andrews

White Hot: A Hidden Legacy Novel by [Andrews, Ilona]
The Hidden Legacy series by #1 New York Times bestselling author Ilona Andrews continues as Nevada and Rogan navigate a world where magic is the norm…and their relationship burns hot Nevada Baylor has a unique and secret skill—she knows when people are lying—and she's used that magic (along with plain, hard work) to keep her colorful and close-knit family's detective agency afloat. But her new case pits her against the shadowy forces that almost destroyed the city of Houston once before, bringing Nevada back into contact with Connor "Mad" Rogan. Rogan is a billionaire Prime—the highest rank of magic user—and as unreadable as ever, despite Nevada’s “talent.” But there’s no hiding the sparks between them. Now that the stakes are even higher, both professionally and personally, and their foes are unimaginably powerful, Rogan and Nevada will find that nothing burns like ice … An Avon Romance




I just wanted to say that is if you are following this trilogy, reading this book is really going to be worth it.

Luckily for fans, the last book in this trilogy 
Wildfire is going to come out only two months after this one comes out. (July 25, 2017)

What I did want to say is that with reading this book I see sooo many parallels to the Kate Daniel's books. I can't wait for you to read this to see if you see it too.

The only thing this trilogy gives us that is different from the Kate series, is real sex (not in the first book, but in this one), not just the sex being talked about in hints and the abstract. (I am not so happy with the particular word usage for Nevada's lady bits, but what can I say? My issue, my problem.)

I would love to see a novella or book that looks at the action in this trilogy through Conner's eyes.



This is a wonderful fantasy trilogy – it is all about magic, the highest magic users and what the world is like for the haves and have-nots. It is a great mystery -  the trilogy has a new mystery   with each new book, while still drawing out the biggest mystery (who is trying to bring down the Houses of Houston).  The mystery we are delving into with each new book.

If you have not read the first book in this trilogy -I suggest that you do. You don’t really need to since the author’s do a fantastic job of bringing you pretty much up-to-date. But it will go a long way of describing this new world and give you very good insights into some of the important characters. (plus, it is quite inexpensive at the moment!!!)

In this the second book in this series, we find even more character and world building.  Nevada is really coming into her own and is showing to be almost as mercenary as Kate is (from the Kate Daniel’s series by the same author’s) as far as certain things go.  They really are very similar character’s.

Conner is a bit more--- I was going to say Alpha than Curran, but that really isn’t the correct word! Conner is just broodier and angstier than Curran.

The story line in this book is a fascinating one starting with Nevada and crew being hired to solve the murder of the wife of a minor character in the book before this one (who now becomes so much more!) and turns into something so much more complicated…but since it is almost all of the story-lines are tied up at the end it really works. (note that I said, ‘almost all of the story-lines’)

One thing I want to mention is that the character of Augustine Montgomery is such a perfect melding of Ghastek Stefanoff and Saiman (I would really love to see a book or novella just on Augustine).


So, all in all this was a very sexy and satisfying, complicated but not too complicated read and I cannot wait for the last book in the trilogy.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Product Details


THE NEW MEMORY MAN NOVEL!
Amos Decker witnesses a murder just outside FBI headquarters. A man shoots a woman execution-style on a crowded sidewalk, then turns the gun on himself.
Even with Decker's extraordinary powers of observation and deduction, the killing is baffling. Decker and his team can find absolutely no connection between the shooter--a family man with a successful consulting business--and his victim, a schoolteacher. Nor is there a hint of any possible motive for the attack. 
Enter Harper Brown. An agent of the Defense Intelligence Agency, she orders Decker to back off the case. The murder is part of an open DIA investigation, one so classified that Decker and his team aren't cleared for it. 
But they learn that the DIA believes solving the murder is now a matter of urgent national security. Critical information may have been leaked to a hostile government--or worse, an international terrorist group--and an attack may be imminent.
Decker's never been one to follow the rules, especially with the stakes so high. Forced into an uneasy alliance with Agent Brown, Decker remains laser focused on only one goal: solving the case before it's too late.

The Fix -David Baldacci

This is a very good entry in a great series.  I just wish that the series remained as good as the first book had been.  This series still has potential so I am not going to give up on it.

I really recommend that you read at least the first book in this series before you tackle this one---in fact since there are only three books I would say go for reading both earlier books before reading this one.  HOWEVER, you don’t HAVE to read the earlier books to get into this one – it will just make it easier on you to understand Amos Decker’s quirks and fantastical ability.

This book is total mystery with a slight dash of fantasy thrown in. A theft of our Countries secrets, spying, hacking, espionage, Russia- Middle East, murder and a story line a little too close to home/the truth for my taste! In the first book, we find how Amos came to have his ‘abilities’ and he goes from a cardboard box living, shell of a man, to this book where he is a successful part of a team that is part of the FBI and making friends. (with the possibility of a girl-friend I think!)

What slightly bothered me about this book is the fact that it (in my opinion of course) could have lost about one hundred pages of dead-horse beating, repetitive conversation that I am sure if you are in the business of crime fighting, is important but for the average reader is just annoying.  I needed a tad more action and a tad less wash-rinse-repeat.

There is also one brief story-line and action sequence that I don’t see how it made the main story move forward -but perhaps this was a set-up for a future story-line.

Not a bad book at all, but not my favorite by far.

ARC supplied by author and publisher.