Friday, December 10, 2010

Fiona Friday - Sleeping Beauties (and some new book arrivals)

This looks so tiny!! But, I loaded the full-pixel image, so you should be able to click on the image to see the kitties a little closer (I hope).

I'm just now cooling off from a workout that involved throwing the little toys we call "milk carton tabs" in two different directions and zipping back and forth to keep repeating the process, so that the two kitties didn't cross paths and get peeved at each other for "stealing my toy". Chiefly, I'm referring to Fiona, who has recently taken to gnawing on Izzy until Izzy cries out, "Help me, help me, help me, stop her, stop her, stop her, OUCH!" in kitten language (the sound is very much like several steps on a squeaky toy). The only solution is to wear out both furballs, although there may be some time-outs involved if Fi keeps this up.

I wear out much faster than the cats do, unfortunately.

I began working on a review of Cosmic by Frank Cottrell Boyce, last night, but I didn't get far before I was overcome with a sudden and overwhelming urge to read, which resulted in one of those really late nights that you have when you're an insane book addict who keeps saying, "Just one more chapter. Okay. Just one more. Really, this time I'll stop at the end of the chapter." On and on until I finished Pemberley Ranch. I got to bed at 3:00 am. Then I had to wake up (oh, the trauma) to go fetch Kiddo from school and run some errands. I'm kind of beat.

Tomorrow, I plan to finish my Cosmic review some time during a day of mad cleaning. It's going to be a very positive review, in case you're interested.

Since I still haven't charged my camera batteries, I'll just copy some images to show you my 4 most recent arrivals.

The Thief of Time by John Boyne - from a swap site (I've decided to simply refer to Paperback Swap generically, in the future, for the sake of those who might not know what PBS stands for). I have no earthly idea where I heard about The Thief of Time but it sure sounds fun. Here's the cover blurb:

It is 1758 and Matthieu Zela is fleeing Paris for Dover, having witnessed the murder of his mother by his stepfather.

Beginning in murder and ending in redemption, Matthieu's life is characterised by one extraordinary fact: before the eighteenth century ends he discovers that his body has stopped ageing. At the end of the twentieth century he is able to look back on a life lived to the full. He has been an engineer, a rogue, a movie mogul, a soldier, a cable TV executive and a lover to many. Spanning two-and-a-half centuries, The Thief of Time weaves Hollywood in the 1920s, the Great Exhibition of 1851, the French Revolution, the Wall Street Crash and much more into a dazzling novel of murder, treachery, passion and glamour.

Angel Harp by Michael Phillips - Advanced Reader's Copy from Faith Words for FirstWild review

Selected excerpt from the cover blurb (not the entire blurb):

Widowed at thirty-four, amateur harpist Marie Buchan realizes that her life and dreams are slowly slipping away. A longed-for summer in Scotland offers far more than a change of scenery. Not only does the music of her harp capture the fancy of the small coastal village she visits, but she is unexpectedly drawn into a love triangle involving the local curate and the local duke.

In this sparkling new novel, acclaimed author Michael Phillips takes readers on a romantic journey along Scotland's beautiful shores and into a young widow's search for love, faith and fulfillment.

Bitten by Kelley Armstrong - from a swap site

After reading the entire young adult Darkest Powers series by Kelley Armstrong, I decided I absolutely must read more and Melissa recommended the Women of the Otherworld series. I got two of the books whilst on Thanksgiving holiday and neither was the first book (I had to guess), so I ordered Bitten.

Elena Michaels seems like the typically strong and sexy modern woman. She lives with her architect boyfriend, writes for a popular newspaper, and works out at the gym. She's also a werewolf.

Elena has done all she can to assimilate to the human world, but the man whose bite changed her existence forever, and his legacy, continue to haunt her. Thrown into a desperate war for survival that tests her allegiance to a secret clan of werewolves, Elena must reckon with who and what she is in this passionate and page-turning novel.

La Petite Four by Regina Scott - from a swap site and highly recommended by a blogger, but I have this unfortunate tendency not to write down who wrote the review that swayed me. I'm going to work on trying to become more organized in that way, in 2011.

La Petite Four are Lady Emily and her three best friends: Priscilla, Ariadne and Daphne. They've finally graduated from the Barnsley School for Young Ladies and can't wait for the ball that will launch them into London Society.

Then detestable Lord Robert announces that he wants to mary Emily! This dreadful news threatens to prevent their ball from ever taking place! La Petite Four vow that no gentleman will come between them and what promises to be the biggest party of the season. Even if it means chasing Lord Robert all over town to discover his ugly secret, muddying their hems and constantly running into wickedly charming strangers like the mysterious James Cropper. Or could it be that James is following them?

But when La Petite Four uncover a deadly scheme, they realize they are the only ones who can put a stop to it. Now they don't know who to trust--only that they must save the ball, and Emily, before it's too late!

I have more titles I haven't mentioned and which I'll share another day.


Have you got any great plans for the weekend? My plans, besides mad cleaning and writing my Cosmic review are to finish at least two books, watch a couple of movies, begin writing Christmas cards (yes, yes, I know I'm getting a late start, but usually I just ignore them completely) and do a bit more Christmas decorating. We haven't even got a tree, but that's okay since we don't yet have any packages to put under one. This is the tree I want.


  1. Glad you finally scored a copy of Bitten. Let me know what you think!

  2. So, Kelly Armstrong, huh? I can't remember another author having the ability to drive me to distraction the way she does. I love her stories - and Bitten is no exception - but Armstrong has the ability to craft characters that drive me crazy. Elena is no exception. I'll be interested in your review whenever you get to it.


  3. Melissa,

    I had to toggle off my usual conditions to get a copy of Bitten, so I'm just excited I finally managed to acquire a copy!!! :) I'll let you know what I think, of course.


    Hmm, I guess I'll find out what I think about Elena, but I absolutely loved the characters in her Darkest Powers series, so that kind of bodes well. :)

  4. I love that tree! I don't have a cat, but what a great idea!!

  5. Les,

    Isn't that cool? We don't have time to figure out how to get the lumber home and then build one, but it's on the agenda for next year.

  6. Hez wants that tree.
    Hmm. Since I've seen your review of Cosmic & liked it....I must be reading posts out of order. Thief of Time sounds good too, even if it's not time travel.
    Fiona, behave. You're the oldest, you have to set the good example.

  7. Carrie,

    Hez definitely needs that tree.

    S'okay. You may read in any order you'd like. Cosmic is tremendous fun. I thought of you when Thief of Time came in the mail. It sounds like a Carrie book to me. I'm hoping I can get to it soon, then I'll let you know. :)

    Fiona *mostly* behaves. At least she just gnaws on Isabel but doesn't bite down and usually it's kind of like what my youngest son used to do. If he got extremely hyper and badly behaved, it typically meant he was either hungry or needed someone to run him. So . . . cat food and lasers are the usual cure. If/when those cease to work, we'll go for time out. But, to this point they've worked.

  8. Tell Fi to behave herself! I love their beds.

  9. Milk carton tabs seem to be the universal cat toy. Basically every cat I've lived with has played with them.

  10. Kathy,

    Aren't those beds cool? I got them at our local Big Lots, of all places. Fi and Izzy were tussling in their favorite chair, a little bit ago, but I went over and talked softly to them and it worked! They both calmed down and now they're sleeping peacefully in that adorable yin-yang position. So, so cute!


    I know! Milk carton tabs are the greatest. The little toy I'm referring to is actually a purchased toy but it's very much like a milk-carton tab. We no longer buy gallon milk jugs so that's why I went ahead and bought something similar. They are crazy about those toys. :)

  11. The kitties are adorable! My Tiger sympathy cries when Midnight is getting a bath. He stands right behind us and cries the whole time like "How can you do that to my buddy?" Whereas Midnight runs far away when she sees that Tiger is getting a bath. Ok, that didn't have much to do with what you wrote about, I think it was because you were talking about kitty cries and it made me think of my kitties.

    I have The Thief of Time but haven't read it yet. I'm a sucker for time travel though. :)

  12. Alyce,

    Aww, that's really sweet that Tiger cries out of sympathy! Pretty funny that Midnight doesn't reciprocate.

    I do that, too -- tell stories about my cats when someone brings something up that reminds me of something my kitties do. They're such fun.

    If you beat me to The Thief of Time, you'll have to tell me what you think. It sounds so good.


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