Thursday, July 1, 2010

Book Blogger Hop - July 2-5

The Hop is going to start having a CRAZY twist each week, to get to know each other a little better!  

To check out other answers and join the hop go and check out for the Mr. Linky for the Blog Hop. 


My name is Crystal Fulcher and I started blogging because I thought it would be a great way to keep up with the books I read and how I felt about them.  I also wanted to join in the wonderful world of other bloggers and how friendly they all seemed.  I have really enjoyed my year of blogging and it has turned into so much more than I thought it would.  I have met wonderful bloggers and authors and blogging has opened up a wonderful world of other readers like me.  I love it and look forward to continue reading your blogs.  I may not always comment, but I am reading a lot of your blogs.

Book Review: Shattered by Karen Robards

Shattered by Karen Robards
Publisher: Putnam
Publish Date: March 23, 2010
Hardcover, 388 pages

My Review:
I haven't read Karen Robards in a couple of years, just wasn't able to get to her release last year because of review books and other books screaming my name.  But when I saw Shattered was being released, I made sure to check it out at the library and read it.

I'm so glad I did.  It was a little bit of a slow start - getting to know Lisa and Scott and the situations that surround them, their past and their  present.  But after some of the preliminaries were gotten out of the way, the book took off and did not stop until the final page.  After reading the full book, you know that each thing mentioned in the beginning plays a role and the character development was essential to the book as a whole.

Shattered is a great example of romantic suspense as a genre.  There was always the suspense element in the background, but the characters and their romance was equally important.  I really feel there was a great 50/50 mix in this book of romance and suspense, which made it wonderful in my eyes.

Lisa and Scott made excellent characters along with some of the secondary characters.  At the beginning it seems that a lot is going on, but it quickly funnels into one main plot line and I truly did  not see the bad guy coming until Karen made it apparent in the book.  I never even got a handle on who it could be, it was really well done.

The romance is heated and these two love to hate each other at times.  Scott has crushed on her since he was young and Lisa has had a thing for Scott since she was 16 and he was 20, but now he's her boss and that adds that extra little obstacle.  But truthfully it seems that there has always been an obstacle in their relationship.  They just finally decide to go for it.  Sparks fly in this book and they are all good.

So if you like your romance mixed with suspense, then this is just the book for you.  I now remember why I read each Karen Robards book that came out a few years ago and now I need to go back and catch up on the ones I missed.  Ms. Robards does an excellent job with plot, characters and her writing.

My Rating:  4.5/5.0

About the Book:
The past is never over. It just gets dusty.

Lisa Grant was a rising star in a prestigious law firm in Lexington, Kentucky, when the firm went bankrupt and she lost her job. With an ailing mother to care fore, she takes the first job she can find: research assistant to District Attorney Scott Buchanan. Scott is as disagreeable as he is sexy, and Lisa suspects the only reason she got the job was Scott's fond feelings for her mother, who treated him well when he was just a farmhand on the Grant's large horse farm while Lisa was growing up.

After she misses and important court date, Lisa doesn't get any special treatment from Scott. As punishment, he sends her to organize cold-case files in the basement of the courthouse. What Lisa expects to be a mind-numbingly boring task turns into anything but that when a missing persons case draws her attention. The details of the case are engrossing: an entire family - father, mother, and two children - disappeared without a trace more than twenty-eight years ago. Except that's not all: the mother in a photo Lisa finds could be her own twin.

Before Lisa can learn more, a series of catastrophes strikes close to home, and she realizes that finding the photo has put her in terrible danger. Determined to uncover the truth, she confides in Scott, and there relationship develops into something beyond that of employer and employee. Together they unravel a terrifying web of criminal connections that could shatter what Lisa knows of her past. And it's clear someone will got to shocking lengths to make sure certain secrets stay hidden.

About the Author:
Karen Robards is a best-selling author of over thirty romance novels. After first gaining recognition for her historical romances, Robards became one of the first historical romance novelists to successfully make the switch to contemporary romantic fiction. Her work has been translated into eleven languages, and has won awards from both Romantic Times and Affaire de Coeur. 

Previous Books I Have Read by Karen Robards:

FTC Information: I checked this book out from my wonderful local library for my reading enjoyment.  I have Amazon links on my review pages but I do not make any money from these because of NC laws.  I put them solely for people to check out the books on a retail site.

ARC Giveaway: Infinite Days by Rebecca Maizel

In an effort to get some of my review books read and into others' hands before the release date, I am going to start doing some giveaways.  This will motivate me to get the book read so I can mail it to you.

My first one will be Infinite Days by Rebecca Maizel which I plan on enjoying this holiday weekend.  It releases in August from St. Martin's Griffin so here is your chance to read it before it comes out.  Please note this is an ARC.  Haven't heard of the book yet?  Here is some more information:

When Lenah Beaudonte, a 500-year-old vampire queen, wakes up a human teenager at an ultra-cliquey prep school, she must choose between embracing the humanity she’s always craved and saving her new friends from her vicious coven. The first in a sizzling new YA series.

Lenah Beaudonte is, in many ways, your average teen: the new girl at Wickham Boarding School, she struggles to fit in enough to survive and stand out enough to catch the eye of the golden-boy lacrosse captain. But Lenah also just happens to be a recovering five-hundred-year-old vampire queen. After centuries of terrorizing Europe, Lenah is able to realize the dream all vampires have -- to be human again. After performing a dangerous ritual to restore her humanity, Lenah entered a century-long hibernation, leaving behind the wicked coven she ruled over and the eternal love who has helped grant her deep-seated wish.

Until, that is, Lenah draws her first natural breath in centuries at Wickham and rediscovers a human life that bears little resemblance to the one she had known. As if suddenly becoming a teenager weren’t stressful enough, each passing hour brings Lenah closer to the moment when her abandoned coven will open the crypt where she should be sleeping and find her gone. As her borrowed days slip by, Lenah resolves to live her newfound life as fully as she can. But, to do so, she must answer ominous questions: Can an ex-vampire survive in an alien time and place? What can Lenah do to protect her new friends from the bloodthirsty menace about to descend upon them? And how is she ever going to pass her biology midterm?

Rules for the giveaway:  Simple, just comment and leave an email address where to contact you.  Nothing more.  No additional entries, just keeping this one completely simple.  Open to the US/Canada only.  Ends 7/8/2010.

New Trailer for The Dark Divine by Bree Despain

So I read The Dark Divine back in December and fell in absolute love with the book.  You can see the review here.  Now the author, Bree Despain has had a teaser trailer created for The Dark Divine and it is wonderful.  To top it all off she's holding a contest to win a book bag full of books and if she gets enough views on the trailer then she'll even throw in an arc of The Lost Saint (sequel to The Dark Divine) and possible even a 16GB Apple iPad.  So let's help her out by viewing it.  It's short and it's a great teaser for the book.  Then if you haven't read The Dark Divine go out and get it and read it.  Also spread the word where you can - let's help her get lots of views on this one!

For full details on her giveaway, here is her post.


It's time for a new set of winners.  Today I have two giveaways that ended within the last few days.  So let's get to it.

First is 2 ebook copies of The Macgregor's Daughter by Dee Julian (sent from the author):

Apple Blossom
Carrie Symes

Second is the $60 Credit at CSN Stores and the winner is:


Congratulations winners and thanks to everyone for commenting and entering.  You picked out some awesome vanities for the CSN giveaway and have given me lots to think about for when I'm able to get a new vanity for our bathroom.

Thank you to Jason from CSN Stores and author Dee Julian for these amazing prizes!

More winners and giveaways to come later this week.