Written Among The Stars

I love to read, I love to write, and I love to talk about all things that are the written word.

I've read 63 out of 338 pages.

Robogenesis - Daniel H. Wilson

So I was wrong. Dead wrong. The stories are just as interesting....now that new information has been revealed. Before I was like "Meh, this is okay but the war is still over and so who really cares?"

 

But then I read that one page and now I'm all like, "OMG, now this is just so much more relevant! And....omg!"

 

I apologize Daniel Wilson, I should have never doubted you *hugs*

Reading progress update: I've read 42 out of 338 pages.

Robogenesis - Daniel H. Wilson

So far, I am not as interested in this book as I was the previous one (which I still can’t write a review for because of a broken, missing laptop). The stories are just not as enthralling.

I miss my laptop...watching too many movies!

I need my laptop back, we have watched so many movies since it broke, and not many of them were that good! The data backup is done, I am picking it up after work to send to the company for repair or replacement. Then another 7-10 business days to get it fixed. It is probably going to need to be replaced, the motherboard got fried.

 

Here is my rundown of meh movies....

 

Xmen: Days of Future Past: It was okay, but nothing to write home about. The effects were great. The two actors who played the young Prof X and Magneto were excellent. Wolverine was excellent as usual. But it was just so....meh. The ending was an annoyingly sappy HEA. I mean, seriously, they could have done so many other endings that were more believable. I now have no doubt that they are pulling a Star Trek on this one. Going back in time to create an alternate future to restart the franchise.

 

I, Frankenstein: I actually kind of liked this one. The story was a bit silly, the acting was...shockingly bad for Aaron Eckhart. But the effects were great and visually it was an exciting movie. And I liked the concept. So ultimately not great but I enjoyed it.

 

Monument's Men: This one is the only one on the list that I loved, my hubby did not. I thought it was a great story about amazing men. He felt it was too happy go lucky. I liked that. Because it was going along, joking, messing around, having fun and then BAM a barrel of gold fillings taken from the dead at the concentration camps. It hit you because you weren't expecting it since we were all just joking around a second earlier. Moments like that made the movie very profound for me. And I think it made a very profound statement about the politicians who sent that team to do that job. I loved it.

 

Elysium: Ugh, the socialism....it burns. I have officially accepted that I just don't like this director and writer. His whole purpose for making movies is to beat you over the head with his political statement, which is about as subtle as a brick to the side of the head. District 9 was awful because it was all about a statement to say "see how evil humans are, look at all the horrible things they do to people who are different than them." This one sucked just a bad because the whole point was "See, look at all those evil rich people. They could make the world a better place, but choose to hoard everything for themselves instead...OPEN BORDERS FOR EVERYONE, THE RICH SHOULD BE FORCED TO TAKE CARE OF YOU!"  Ugh, just stop already. It is no coincidence that all the rich people on Elysium are 99% white and the poor, unwashed masses were 99% Hispanic. Yeah, really subtle there.

 

The Wolverine: Not too bad but not as great as I had been led to believe. I loved the journey that Logan goes on in the movie but it started to get a bit silly in the end.

I've read 153 out of 249 pages.

Destruction: The December People, Book One - Sharon Bayliss

WTF! He just made out with his kids' friend! Who is 17! I know she is a fertility witch and has this sort of sexual draw about her unconsciously, but you pervert. You have a child that's her age! Ugh.gag.me.

Well this is gonna suck!

So in a moment of supreme idiocy, I accidentally spilled water on my laptop yesterday. Yeah, I know, totally stupid. Luckily, I have 3 years of a warranty on accidental damage so it will be entirely free to replace or repair. Well all except the backing up my data part, I have things I haven't backed up and the laptop is currently non-functional so I can't do it now, so I'll have to take it somewhere and ask them to back it up for me...probably cost me about $50.

 

Here's the crappy part. I won't have my laptop for like 2-3 weeks! I won't be able to listen to any of my podcasts, because I got no itunes. I won't be able to listen to what's currently on my ipod for long because I wouldn't be able to charge it (unless I also track down and buy an a/c charger. I have ARCs that are going to expire undownloaded in that time. I can't freelance write, which is a huge amount of time to lose.

 

This just all around sucks!

I've read 140 out of 249 pages.

Destruction: The December People, Book One - Sharon Bayliss

I'm no longer sure exactly where this is going. They're being set up somehow? Maybe? Not sure. While looking for a minor witch's missing parents at the same time. I want to enjoy this story but I am struggling.

I've read 129 out of 249 pages.

Destruction: The December People, Book One - Sharon Bayliss

I'm noticing a pattern here...

 

Non-practicing witches/wizards: "Practicing magic is bad. It will make you evil. There is no such thing as harmless magic or good magic. Doing magic is bad! Well...okay, unless I really really need or want to, then it's justified and will be okay."

 

Practicing witches/wizards: "You non practicers are all hypocrites, magic can get out of control but it's not an inherently bad thing."

 

I kind of agree with that hypocrite part.I am also sensing some religious undertones with the non-practicers all seeming to be Christian and all practicers being not Christian. Wuh oh.

I've read 76 out of 249 pages.

Destruction: The December People, Book One - Sharon Bayliss

Ugh *rubs temples*, I am just so annoyed at this part of the story. "Hey husband, you are a wizard, only you don't know it...I am too, and the kids, including the children from your affair that you brought home yesterday. You don't remember because I did magic on you to remove your memories so that you didn't have to remember the abuse your deranged wizard father did to you. It was for your own good."

 

Magic is not a cop out for not wanting to explain something. There is always consequences to magic like this, there should be. Meddling with someone's brain is serious business, meddling with their memories and their sense of self. And doing it against their will and without their knowledge. Yet, she had no consequences for doing such a thing. They got married, they had 3 kids, they were successful, and he was the husband she always wanted. That's annoying.

Review: Scars by Kiru Taye

Scars - Kiru Taye

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, thank you Evernight Publishing!

 

Warning: This short story is an erotica and features sexual content including light BDSM.

 

 

This little story was delightful. I have never heard of the author previously but I will seek out more of her work now. It was sexy and fun and well put together.

 

This is an author who knows what they are talking about when it comes to BDSM. While they did not touch upon this couples’ agreement in particular, but the context of the story lets you know that they are well aware of each other’s rules in this game. And the small snippet of the other story we got even used the BDSM mantra, SSC. That delighted me. There’s even a moment of aftercare! I think I swooned.

 

This main character is also great. She is a strong, determined, smart fighter of a woman. I kind of cringed when I saw she had a violent past, but it is not typically what you would see and honestly had nothing to do with her interest in BDSM. That was really refreshing since most female characters in BDSM are reliving some past abuse all of the time.

 

Overall it was a short little story but one that was excellently executed.

An interesting journey to this site

I was recently listening to a radio program and they talked about their new sponsor, NatureBox. They send you healthy snacks once a month with great variety. The hosts went on and on about how great the snacks were. I have a terrible time snacking healthily so I thought it sounded like it was worth investigating.

 

I googled to find reviews and was shocked. I saw so much bad! Expired snacks, snacks that said they were not expired but were rancid, terrible customer service, the company sending "expired" coupon codes and refusing to honor them. This radio program has never steered me wrong before and I was shocked by what I found. But I noticed something. In every single review (and comments on those reviews) they mentioned Graze being so much better...interesting.

 

So I went and looked at Graze. First, their snacks sound fantastic. And it seems like they make it so easy to rate the stuff so that you are not getting snacks you don't like or might have an allergy to. They let you set up once a week or every 2 week deliveries. Cancel anytime. Free shipping always. And it's pretty cheap. I ordered my first box and we will see how it goes. If it's any good I will post my friend code here (I think it offers you the 1st and 5th box for free if you use it) for anyone who might want to try.

I tried not to name names but fuck you Arlene Lagos

Butterflies Wake (Volume 1) - Arlene Lagos

I posted about this author awhile ago, and didn't name any names because I was mostly just frustrated. But let me give you a timeline of this spammer named Arlene Lagos.

 

1 year ago: Approximately a year ago, this author data mined a group I was in. The intention of the group was to get ARCs to bloggers for guaranteed reviews (not guaranteed to be positive). In order to get the ARC, you provided your email on the thread and the ARC was sent to you. She wasn't a part of the group, but took a bunch of email addresses from the group and used them to spam me and others. I blocked her on GR and stopped participating in the group when the moderators refused to make it private to protect that information.

 

After I reported her to GR about using my email that she got from the site and put in a status update about it, she PMd me to say she really wasn't spamming but sorry if I thought she was. She was new to this and had no idea that was not acceptable. Yeah, right.

 

Past few months: Recently this author has been spamming me on Twitter. Mentioning me (and others) Twitter handle individually in tweet promotion about her stupid book. This happened repeatedly. So I blocked her and reported her for spamming. Apparently Twitter doesn't think this is spamming, I don't agree. https://twitter.com/ArleneLagos

 

Today: I get home and what do I find? Another fucking email from this fucking woman to spam me with her new fucking book.

 

Leave me the fuck alone you lunatic woman! I am never, ever, ever going to read your books. You are a spammer and a really stupid one at that if you keep coming back to me no matter how much shit you get for it.

I've read 23 out of 249 pages.

Destruction: The December People, Book One - Sharon Bayliss

Sometimes the synopsis of the book can really ruin things. Example:

 

"David Vandergraff wants to be a good man. He goes to church every Sunday, keeps his lawn trim and green, and loves his wife and kids more than anything. Unfortunately, being a dark wizard isn’t a choice"

 

Interesting, Unfortunately, David doesn't realize he's a dark wizard, so it's kind of annoying for me to know when he doesn't know.

 

"Eleven years ago, David’s secret second family went missing. When his two lost children are finally found, he learns they suffered years of unthinkable abuse. Ready to make things right, David brings the kids home even though it could mean losing the wife he can’t imagine living without."

 

All good, no complaints.

 

"Keeping his life together becomes harder when the new children claim to be dark wizards. David believes they use this fantasy to cope with their trauma. Until, David’s wife admits a secret of her own—she is a dark wizard too, as is David, and all of their children. "

Okay seriously, stop telling me everyone's secrets until I've read the book. So now I am annoyed that David, the dark wizard who doesn't know it, is thinking about his kids coping fantasies about being wizards....except I know they're real.

 

"Now, David must parent two hurting children from a dark world he doesn’t understand and keep his family from falling apart. All while dealing with the realization that everyone he loves, including himself, may be evil."

 

Le sigh.

 

If I wrote this blurb, I would do something like this:

 

"David Vandergraff wants to be a good man. He goes to church every Sunday, keeps his lawn trim and green, and loves his wife and kids more than anything. Eleven years ago, David’s secret second family went missing. When his two lost children are finally found, he learns they suffered years of unthinkable abuse. Ready to make things right, David brings the kids home even though it could mean losing the wife he can’t imagine living without.

Keeping his life together becomes harder when the new children claim to be dark wizards. David believes they use this fantasy to cope with their trauma. But, David isn't the only one who had secrets."

SPOILER ALERT!

Review: Surrender by Tawny Taylor

Surrender - Tawny Taylor

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you Aphrodisia!

 

Warning: This book is an erotica and contains explicit sex scenes. It features light BDSM and dubious consent. Be advised this review might also contain some explicit material.

 

 

On the whole this book was okay. It wasn’t great and it wasn’t terrible but it wasn’t the best erotica I’ve ever read. Honestly, on the sizzle scale it barely hit a simmer.

 

The sex scenes in this book were actually pretty alright. But I am not sure why the author termed this as a BDSM. The ONLY thing that happened was they used a few sex toys and he restrained her hands a few times….with some nibbling and nipple pinching. That is such vanilla BDSM that I don’t even know where to start. Then we have the issue of Kam and Abbie’s affair being started under dubious consent, he blackmails her into agreeing to his terms. Yes he retracts that very quickly and gives her back the choice but not before they had a few sexual encounters together. Also, there is no warning in the synopsis about it being a dubcon, bad author bad!

 

I had a few issues with the BDSM and I started to doubt whether the author had ANY knowledge of the BDSM community at all. You can’t choose a safeword after you already began play. You can’t start play without discussing what is and is not acceptable to the sub, where their hard and soft lines are. You can’t tell your sub that you respect that they are not comfortable with something and then press the issue and demand trust that it will be okay. All of these things make you a bad dom. If any of those things happened in group play, that dom would have to answer to the whole group before being thrown out of playing. These things annoy me, Google could have straightened all of that out. And all of those things happened in this book.

 

Another thing, while I’m on the BDSM topic, why do all people involved in BDSM in books have an abusive background? Literally all of them. That is not an accurate representation of the community at all. Not everyone who likes being tied up during sex was abused. Not everyone who gets horny when their lover takes a paddle to their ass was raped and beaten. Stop doing this already authors, seriously! Just one time I want to see a BDSM book where the participants had no abuse and just like it a little rough but are mentally healthy individuals.

 

Now, let’s move on to the characters. Kam was a typical alpha male character, but surprisingly not an offensive one apart from being a terrible dom. He takes care of Abbie, he respects her, and he protects her. These are things that a real alpha male does, and it’s sexy. Unfortunately Abbie is a moron. She seemed incapable of putting two and two together and not coming up with eight. She is responsible for getting the information that will free Kam from suspicion. She knows that her brother is to blame and then starts feeling funny (after being drugged once already) and has no clue what’s going on. Um hello dummy, this happened a handful of chapters ago. She also repeatedly asks herself whether something actually happened. Example, she almost gets shot. A few paragraphs later Abbie thinks to herself “Did I really almost just get shot? Like, for real?” No dummy, it was a hallucination. If you can’t be sure of what’s happening to you mere moments after it happened then you are beyond hope.

 

The plot was what ruined this book for me. It was so dumb. And so predictable. I knew exactly what was going on as soon as we found out the gender of the accomplice within the company. It seems the only people who didn’t know were Kam and Abbie, probably because they were busy screwing.

 

Final grade, not very good but not offensively bad.

Jaw.....dropped

I guess that sometimes whining and bitching about stuff on GR can pay off. I complained, loudly, about getting turned down for an ARC for the sequel to one of my favorite books last year. Today....I got a message from the author saying she'd see if she could grease some wheels. *shock, awe, jaw drop* I think I might love her. I might have to go all fangirly over this author.

It's almost time to pull the plug

On my Nook First Edition. I have had my faithful Nook since December of 2010, so nearly 4 years. But I fear that it is rapidly approaching the end of its life. It has been not remembering my page number, and taking me back 5-10 pages from where I ended. It has been freezing up on me more often.

 

I think it might be time to start considering a replacement. Not yet, it isn't dead yet! But soon. This makes me sad, I love the 3G connection on this thing, I don't want to go to WiFi only. My dear Nook, so loyal, so hard working, I will miss you when you go.

I've read 116 out of 191 pages.

Surrender - Tawny Taylor

Her brother was fired for suspected embezzlement. She tries to clear his name. Then they put out an arrest warrant on her and the owner of the company for...embezzlement. What?

 

I like porn with plot, but only when the plot makes sense.

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