Special thanks to Leontine from Leontine's Book Realm for the super header.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Torquere Tastings

I've managed to get some reading done on vacation but not much. Being the driver makes it harder. :-) Mostly shorts I've squeezed in when I can.

What Not to Wear by Clare London (48 pages)
Torquere Books

Doug and Beckett are lovers who work for the same company. Beckett is hard working and serious and just got a promotion; Doug works hard enough to keep his job and has a penchant for wearing t-shirts with dirty sayings on them and getting into trouble. However he always seems to manage to entice Beckett into some naughty action at the office. The story takes place over a week with each day involving a different t-shirt and different shenanigan’s which end up with Beckett losing his job and Doug quitting in solidarity. I was a bit shocked by the kind of office sex these guys were having, in cubicles no less. Working in an office I found it a bit over the top (or maybe I’m just oblivious LOL) but if you just went with the fun aspect it was a cute story. Beckett perhaps wasn’t as straight-laced as he’d have you believe and you could sense their passion and the fun in their relationship. A fun sexy read with a bit of a different ending that I enjoyed.

Sticky Fingers by HT Murray (17 pages)
Torquere Books

This is a follow-up to the story Go Fish which was the very funny story of best friends and roommates Cal and Ian finally figuring out they had something together and bonding over fish. This time they are back from vacation with Cal’s family and Ian gets covered in watermelon juice. Strangely Cal finds this a turn on and manoeuvres Ian into the garage where he “deals with” the sticky mess. This is just a little sexy interlude with the guys. I would have loved to see more of Marcy, she was great in the first book and gets a mention here. So for fans of Go Fish you’ll enjoy this little look at the guys a few months later.

Secret Santa by Aaron Michaels (53 pages)
Torquere Books

Yes, yes, Christmas in July. It’s keeping me cool. Ollie is an accounting manager and all around office Scrooge, he hates office birthdays, showers, parties, and especially the secret Santa gift exchange. This year he gets the name of the hot young new guy who is rumoured to be sleeping with the boss. He’s sure it’s a set up, but with some prodding decides to try and get to know him better only to find out the rumours are likely true. Ollie had a rough time as a kid with Christmas and now even his fantasy is a bust. However, he gets a very thoughtful gift from Matt, who appears to have gotten a far more thoughtful gift from him than he bought. Seems half the office was in on setting them up. There were dashes of humour in this that made me laugh out loud a couple of times and there were some poignant moments as Ollie remembered his childhood and his relationships including the one with Jonas who left him and broke his heart. I quite liked this one, the secondary characters where good and appealing as well. If you’re looking for a cute little Christmas story that’s not too sugary it might fit the bill.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Thar She Blows!!!!

Okay, I'm staring in reverse a bit here, but I'll go back a bit.

Monday after a lovely brunch out with my friend Mel, we headed to Boston. We bought trolley tour tickets since they were good for two days, and rode the entire route Monday afternoon. Tuesday morning we went on the harbour tour, then went to the Faneuil Market which has a gagillion food stalls and little stores. It was soooo hot though, we got pooped out and went to the Aquarium where we knew it would be air conditioned. They had a special jelly fish exhibit and those jelly fish are live in a tank, very cool for us land-locked folk.

Tuesday night we went to Cirque du Soleil's "Ovo". You must go when it comes to Amsterdam Janna. It was so good. But then I've yet to see a Cirque show that wasn't. We were dazzled by the Grasshopper guys on trampolines and the trapeze artists were amazing. We go nearly every year to the new show in Montreal and probably 75% of us at a Montreal show have seen nearly every show that comes through. I don't want to say we are jaded, but to hear the enthusiasm of a crowd who's likely never seen a show before was kind of an eye-opener. They ARE freaking amazing and we should appreciate it like the first time we saw them.

Wednesday morning we headed down to Cape Cod. It was perfect beach weather so we hit one of the beaches. It was very windy and blowing sand HURTS, but my kid actually went in 62 degree water (16 C). It actually hurt when you first got in it was so cold. I got to almost my knees, that was plenty far enough. The beach was gorgeous pale sand and just went on forever. Oh and who can resist cute boys who read at the beach. Oh yeah. :-) I was enjoying the scenery.

Thursday (today) we got up bright and early to go whale watching. I was a bit concerned because it was overcast and TWICE my whale watching efforts have been thwarted by fog, but we headed out on the boat and it rained a bit, but as soon as we got to the whale watching area it stopped. We saw several Humpback whales which these pictures are of. There were also several Minke whales but they stay far away. There was even a mother and calf. The staff know all the whales' names by their traits so it was very cool. The one in the upper left was RIGHT beside the boat, probably 20 feet out and we were in the right place to see it. We also saw a tuna jump out of the water which was kind of wild. So I was VERY happy with our whale watching experience. I can die happy now. :-) And poorer. NOT cheap. But so worth it.

Tonight we are in Providence, Rhode Island. We met up with my friend John who took us to the Cheesecake Factory for dinner. MASSIVE portions and divine cheesecake. We then sat and talked and talked and talked. We are just kind of vegging and I want to go and do some laundry in the morning and then we're leaving for Long Island and Craig's pool party where we will meet up with some old friends and some new, at least new in the face-to-face sense. It's kind of nice to have an evening to relax and sleep in a bit tomorrow.

So far it's been a great trip, despite getting slightly lost in downtown Providence. LOL I do much better with a map than verbal directions. I appear to be a visual learner. :-) Hope everyone has a super weekend.

Green with Envy

Still on vacation and having fun. You can be green with envy as to my fun times. ;-) Enjoy the boys.

Align Center

This is Greenlight by John Legend featuring Andre 3000.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Caged - A Free Story

Since I'm away on holiday, I'm not sure there will be much in the way of book postings, not that I've posted that much in the books department lately. *sigh* Can you say slump? So, this is a little story I wrote for Wave when we had a small debate about where there could be a hamster shifter in m/m. I said yes, and here he is. Just click on the little guy above and you'll get his story. I'm still waiting for TA Chase to hold up his end of the bargain and write the giraffe shifter story. :-)
Special thanks to Chris for reading it over and editing it for me.
I'll try and get on to answer comments later in the day today. Depends on my internet access. Have a great week everyone.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Quaintness Overdose in Progress ... Send Help

Seriously people, this part of the country is just so damn quaint I need a dose of inner-city grit and grime soon or I'm going to go into a coma.

We made it to Maine with little trouble. We stopped in Montpelier, Vermont for a minute. A) because I needed gas, B) because the kid was starving and C) because one of my all-time fave m/m books Hot Ticket by KA Mitchell is set there. Squee. Okay, I assumed we'd hit the usual suburbs for gas and a burger but you end up right down town (there are no suburbs it seems LOL), which was so damn quaint I almost died and started demanding the kid take pictures of every freaking cute building in town. We couldn't stay long, but I said to my daughter we should come back for a long weekend because the whole place is just adorable. The white building the columns is the State Capital, I have no idea what that other building is but it was nice, and everything just looks like a movie set of the classic New England town.

So unfortunately we had to whip out of town and the rest of the way to Maine wasn't bad until we hit grid-lock on the I-95 at 2:00 in the afternoon on a Saturday. WTF? But we made it and the quaintness continued. Some of the house's near Mel's place in Kittery, Maine are just GORGEOUS and expensive he tells me. If you have $2 million or so kicking around you can own a classic New England looking house on the water. And look at that lighthouse? It screams post card.

Saturday afternoon we went to a local park area and the tide was out so we were able to go waaaaay out on the sand and see all the snails and sea weed (gag, that stuff stinks). You can see it was pretty grey and dark but it was wonderful to walk way out. Today we went to the lighthouse and the tide was in. Someone asked me to take a picture of her and her husband so I got her to return the favour and got one of the few pics of me and the kid. It was much clearer and the ocean was bluer and it was rushing in. Got our feet wet once when a particularly big wave came in. We have some lovely ice-cream there. We also passed by the local beach to get there. a gazillion people on 5.5 feet of beach since the tide was in. LOL And we thought the water was cold but lots of people in and hundreds of apartments and hotels right across the road from the beach. Quite the touristy area.

My friend Mel and his husband David live on a farm, and today was "open farm" day in Maine. They kind of share the farm with the alpaca farmers but it's all one big property more or less. These are Mel's sheep Angus and Sean Ferguson. Oh we saw this deer at the park the first night. We walked right up until we were about 20 feet away and it just looked at us then turned and walked into the woods. Very cool. The kidlet with Mel's dog Tuck. She sat on the floor and he crawled right up into her lap. And of course two of the alpacas.

This morning we went to a civil war encampment reenactment at the local fort just down the road. They were shooting off their guns and all dressed in their costumes and had a camp set up you could look around in. Kind of cool and different.

Mel has had to work this weekend so we haven't seen him and Tuck, but David has been great about making sure we didn't get lost and explaining all about alpaca farming and wool. We went for Thai food last night and there is a great wood-fire pizza place we are going to check out tonight. We went to a place called the Bagel Caboose for breakfast, because who could resist a train caboose that sells bagels? I found a huge area of outlet malls and I forced the kid to try on jeans. Sigh. I paid the price for that.

We've just kind of been relaxing this afternoon since we got back. It's really hot here today so it's kind of hot to go out, although it looks like it might rain later. We are heading to Boston tomorrow. We are going to wait until Mel gets home in the morning and spend some time with him and then head down. Boston hotels are SOOOO expensive, but we're only staying two nights so that will be our splurge. Looking forward to the rest of my trip.

Friday, July 23, 2010

It's Vacation Time ... Again!

So my daughter and I are off on our summer vacation tomorrow morning bright and early. We are going to New England and then down to New York and Philadelphia. Lots of driving but not as much as last year when we went to North Carolina.

We are heading for Maine tomorrow. Right were it connects to Massachusetts. We are staying with one of my internet Puntabufriends, although he has to work most of the weekend so his husband gets to host us. Eeek. Sorry about that David. Oh well, we'll be busy doing touristy things. They have a couple of sheep and alpacas so Kristen is looking forward to hanging with the animals.

Then we are heading to Boston for a couple of days. And we'll be going to the Cirque du Soleil show Ovo there. These are some pics I grabbed on-line. Seems to involve gigantic kiwi, who doesn't love kiwi?, and some very bendy people. Look at the leg on the girl (I think) on the left. Can you say ouch? I'm looking forward to the show.

Then we are going to stop briefly at Cape Cod and in Rhode Island where I'm going to connect with another on-line friend for dinner. Friday we are off to the ever popular Long Island for the Puntabulous Pool Party. I hope we have nice pool weather. I'm looking forward to seeing some old friends again in person and finally getting the chance to give real hugs rather than virtual to a few. Michelle and her husband are flying all the way in from San Diego for the party, wish all the west coasters could come, but that's not feasible I know. They'll be with us in spirit I'm sure.

And of course no pool party is completely without these.

We are then going to stay in New York City (likely in the suburbs and commute) for a few days and I plan to get together with another m/m reader from Good Reads for coffee or a drink. We have no big plans for New York. We're going to play it by ear. We've been twice before so no need to hit the typical tourist spots, but there are some restaurants we want to try and we'll see about getting tickets for a show.

Our final stop will be Philadelphia. Not sure what we'll do there. I'm completely unfamiliar with the city so again we'll see what appeals when we arrive and get some tourist info.

And finally the seven hour drive back home, which will not be that bad.

Of course I'll be on-line from time to time because we do NOT get hotels without internet. LOL But obviously during the day we'll be out and about, being tourists and spending time with friends. I have a couple of posts set to come and I'll pop in with some updates and pictures of the trip when I can. So see ya later.

Oh and we haven't started packing yet. Eeek. Plenty of time right? I have the pet sitter arranged, brand spanking new passports and money so I'm good. Won't take long to throw some clothes in the suitcase. At least I'm telling myself that. :-)

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


So this week, I think, I surpassed my goal for the m/m reading challenge below. (You can click on the button on the sidebar to see the challenge details.) The original challenge was 20+ books in 2010. HAHAHAHAHAHA Okay, so I changed my own goal to 75 books of at least 90 pages. Otherwise I was finished by about Jan. 12. I'm sure I've missed some, I'm not very good at updating it and I usually had to go back a bit and sometimes wasn't sure if I added something and I didn't count yaoi, but needless to say I well surpassed the goal set by the challenge organizer and my own goal.

I don't usually participate in challenges because I tend to get all stubborn and go "You want me to read 5 books by male authors who have red hair?" "No." Even if I would have read them anyway. The kid inside me rebels but this one was easy, it's not like I was going to stop reading m/m. So I'm glad I'm done and I have no intention of keep tracking anymore so I can see double that number. I'm content with what I have. Good luck to others who are out there working on their challenges for this year.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Who Wears Short Shorts?

So much for my short-long-short-long strategy. LOL But here's a couple of shorts I read in the last couple of days.

Taste Test: Rainy Days and Monday by GR Richards, Mercy Loomis, Taylor Lochland (32 pages)
Torquere Books

All of these stories have a theme of rain and/or Monday.

I Don't Like Mondays - GR Richards: Brent and Mitch are headed to work on a rainy Monday. Thanks to the traffic Mitch's coffee ends up all down his shirt and they have to head back to change. Brent has been feeling uneasy because everyone at work thinks they are just carpool buddies and Mitch doesn't want to tell. After a little interlude at the apartment there is a happy ending. It was a very sweet story with slightly insecure Brent wondering just how committed Mitch is, which becomes very clear.

Encore - Mercy Loomis: Derrick and Nate are band mates and after a successful concert they head back to Derrick's room. Nate is acting odd and when Derrick confronts him he kisses him. Derrick is rather freaked and has always been with women. Nate tells him that Derrick's ex told him about the dungeon Dom stuff and after Derrick thinks for a moment he figures what the hell and does a little scene with Nate. It's so hot for both they decide to try for more. It was interesting that Derrick had never been with a guy sexually before but hadn't been all that enamoured with women so opened himself to trying. A steamy little piece with a D/s theme. Oh yeah, it was raining when they left the concert.

Rain Delay - Taylor Lochland: This is a follow-up story but I can't remember in which book. 33 year old vet Aaron has been seeing 23 year old farm boy Nathan for about a year and they keep it hidden. He's been away and plans to go riding with Nathan and hopefully getting smexy in the woods. When a downpour hits they head back and despite Nathan's Mom going to the store, they keep getting interrupted. The next day they come up with a plan for Nathan to work at the vet clinic, aka fuck like bunnies at Aaron's place. I have issues with couples where one is in the closet like that. I know, I know, it's not easy but for a 33 year old man to have to sneak around and fake a job so he can have his boyfriend at his house seems like a doomed relationship to me. So my frustration with their situation took something away from the story for me.

The Solstice Mistletoe Effect by Serena Yates (120 pages)
Dreamspinner Press

This is a continuation of The Mistletoe Phenomenon. Things have settled down and Lance is a SAHD and Jacob is off to school. Lance if finding it difficult being looked down on for not having a job and Jacob is getting hassled a bit at school. However things improve and they decide to go to Sweden for summer vacation and visit Magnus' parents. Lance is nervous but Magnus tells him his parents are fine with it. Yeah, not so much. They can barely tolerate Lance and his Dad is outright hostile. They even go so far as to invite a former coworker of Magnus' who pursues him mightily while Magnus is oblivious. After a huge blow-up, they finally talk it out and come to a happy solution for their family. I couldn't BELIEVE how oblivious Magnus was to the woman's plans, but then I thought, he's a scientist, probably not that bright on the common sense front. LOL And Lance kind of turned into this insecure needy thing. I'd presume even in Wyoming they have SAHDs. Maybe not. Anyway, despite the fact that Magnus' parents were totally over the top, there were some great descriptions of the summer solstice festival in Stockholm which were cool.

Bus Stop by Pepper Espinoza (51 pages)
Amber Allure

Patrick is an American living in Italy (what's with the AA Italy series?) and is caught in a downpour at the bus stop without an umbrella. Hottie Lealdo offers to share and they get to chatting. Although Patrick figures Lealdo is just out to bed an American he's attracted and after another rainy morning of a shared umbrella they get together for a date. Eventually their date ends up at Patrick's place and well, the usual ensues. It's a cute little story about finding love in Rome, with some nice descriptions of the city and life there. My only niggle was their first night, first time, they do it with no lube. Yes, there is a condom which may have been lubricated but that's it. Then in the morning they do it bareback (to my cries of "don't be stupid" LOL) again, with no lube. Ooookay. I'm pretty sure they have lube in Italy. Hit a drug store people before Kris' phrase "fucked raw" takes on a literal meaning. Friction burns. Ouch.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

The Long and Short of It

So after reading All or Nothing, I took a break and read a short book then went back and tackled my next longest book. Maybe if I hop back and forth between longer and shorter I won't feel so overwhelmed. So I tell myself.

Moor Love by Carol Lynn (61 pages)
Total-e-Bound Publishing

Caleb is studying agriculture in college and gets the chance to do a work term of a year on a sheep farm in Yorkshire. Jon is mute and has aggravated and old injury and does not WANT help but accepts it grudgingly. Eventually Caleb and Jon admit their attraction and start a relationship. Caleb's mother comes and stirs things up a bit but it all works out in the end. I find many Carol Lynn books have insta-love which doesn't work for me but this is not the case here, the relationship develops over time, although I'm not sure I liked how it jumped from "hi, nice to meet you" to "two months later" to "four months later". I didn't love how Jon's muteness was dealt with, without giving it away I can't say more. However on the whole for 60 pages I enjoyed it, I liked Caleb and Jon together and I thought the descriptions of Yorkshire were lovely and gave you a feel for the place. (I assume, not having been there it could be all my imagination.)

Keeping Promise Rock by Amy Lane (328 pages)
Dreamspinner Press

Look at me go. Two long books in a week. :-) You know why I don't like long books? Because I was up until 1:44 to finish this Saturday night. Sigh.

This book is probably too long and complex for me to summarize in my format, but Crick who has a rough life as a kid with his step-Dad meets older boy Deacon and Deacon and his Dad take Crick on as a surrogate family. Deacon is much older but Crick falls in love. When Deacon's Dad dies they live together as brothers running the ranch. Deacon is always trying to push Crick to go to college for art and get out of town. Finally they manage to get together and Crick misunderstands something Deacon says and does something totally stupid, like join the army. Sigh. Boys. The rest of the books is their story while Crick is in Iraq and Deacon is dealing with lots of shit back home including Cricks 15 year old pregnant half-sister and floods and illness and Crick is dealing with, well, war stuff in Iraq. Why didn't I read this before? Well, everyone told me I'd need tissues. I did. Sigh. But it was so good I couldn't stop reading it. I had to finish. I loved how Deacon who had always been the capable one Crick looked up to ended up being not quite such a strong guy after all and needed help and in some ways Crick was the one who was stronger. An excellent excellent book and I see Shane and Mikhail are getting a book and Jeff better get a HEA too. *squinty eyed glare at Amy* All of the secondary characters were great, Deacon's best friend Jon and his wife Amy, Lisa, Crick's friend in Iraq, Jeff, Andrew, Benny the sister. I can't say enough good things. Warning though: Start reading it early in the day so you don't have to stay up so late and do keep a couple of tissues handy. :-)

Inception - Movie Review

So yesterday my daughter suggested we go to see Inception. I had no clue who was in it or what it was about. She read me he description leaving me more confused but off we headed. First, I really have trouble with the name. I want to call it Insertion, Inscription, Insemination. Sigh. I had to look it up this morning because I could not remember Inception.

Leonardo Dicaprio plays a character who is on the run from the police in the US because they believe he killed his wife. What he does, is for lots of money, goes into people's dreams and get information, usually commerical information for competitors. When his most recent job goes wrong, he is approached by a Japanese man who says he can make the charges in the US go away and he can go home to his kids if he can PLANT an idea in his competitor's sons' head, rather than take information out. It's very risky but he agrees so he can go home to his kids.

He then gathers up a team to help, including his right hand man, played of Joseph Gordon-Levitt and a student of his father's, Ellen Page. She builds the dream worlds they will use. It's very complicated and I didn't really understand most of it to be honest, but not only is he being chased by the corporation who didn't get their information when he screwed up, when they finally get into the son's dream (Cillian Murphy) it seems he's been trained to resist these incursions so there are a shit load of men with guns trying to get them, along with Lenordo's dead wife from his subconscious who is trying to sabotage things and ... well, let's just say it's VERY complicated with alternating time lines, dreams within dreams, etc.

Did I enjoy it? Yes, as long as I didn't try to have it make logical sense in my mind. Just go with the flow fun. Lots of explosions, gun fights, special effects that were very cool. I did think the bad guys couldn't shoot for shit though. A machine gun and you miss the guy? Really? You're fired. The ending is left all mysterious because you're never sure what is a dream and what is reality but on the whole if you're looking for suspension of disbelief shoot-em up fun, it's an okay movie. I thought Ellen Page was very good and I was really pleased that even though she was the token girl there was no romance subplot including her. Too often the girl is added simply to give the lead a romance, but Leonardo was still hung up on his wife and there were many scenes with him and her, so that was a nice change. I'd say it would be worth seeing for mindless brain candy or if you really like Leonardo Dicaprio.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

All or Nothing

Well go me. I finally finished a book this week. Sigh. Not sure what my issue is. I'm blaming it on having company until Wed. Yeah yeah, I'm lying, they were hardly around. Anyway, last night I stayed up way too late to finish this. Again, the issue with long books. I couldn't go to bed with 50 pages left. I need to tackle some other long ones too. Double sigh.

All or Nothing by James Buchanan (335 pages)
MLR Press

This is book 3 in Brandon and Nicky's saga. It's between Christmas and New Year and Brandon takes his daughter Shayla to visit Nicky in Vegas as his ex and her husband both have work responsibilities. It's a bit weird and awkward and Shayla's a bit of a brat, but not going all that badly. They leave her with Nicky's friend Miri and go home for a little kinkiness when Shayla is snatched off the street. The rest of the book is the search for Shayla and how Brandon (and Nicky) deal with it and interactions with his ex and his step-mom. Detective Orozco is back, I really like that character a lot and adored Brandon's step-mom Edith. You basically know who the kidnapper is, but seeing how the process works from the police angle during a case was interesting if frustrating and when Brandon finally figures it out I wanted to slap Nicky for being so sceptical. Jesus man, have you never watched an episode of Criminal Minds or CSI? The emotional intensity and depths of despair really came through in the writing and when Brandon hits bottom it breaks your heart. And at the end, my insides went all squishy and awww with the very last line of the book. So a must read for Brandon and Nicky fans and for those who haven't experienced this series I highly recommend it. Of course you'll want to kick Brandon in the shins many times along the way, he can be a stubborn ass, but I think he redeemed himself in this book in a very big way and I was very happy with how it ended.

Happy weekend everyone. Stay warm or cool depending on your preference. :-)

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Long and thick, just the way you like it.

MY GOD! Get your mind out of the gutter, I'm talking books. Sheesh. I know many people like long books, I am a self-professed short story slut. I'm not anti-long books, but I don't necessarily seek them out either. I will admit thought to having trouble getting started on them. I love James Buchanan's work. I LOVE Nicky and Brandon, I think I bought the last book All or Nothing within a day or so of release, which was mid-April. When did I start reading it? Yesterday. It's been sitting there staring at me. It had great reviews, everyone loved it, I knew (know - not finished yet) that I would love it but .... I just couldn't seem to make myself start a 320+ page book. It takes commitment, I'm unlikely to finish it in a day (unless I start on a weekend) and I hate having to stop, it breaks my flow. Once I'm in the story I just want to go until the end.

However my TBR is starting to freak me out and I keep buying books and reading the short ones and leaving the others so I went to the file and All or Nothing was my largest e-book file (pdf) at 3,536 KB so I opened it up and got going. I'm about 1/3 of the way through and I think my computer nearly caught fire last night. Whew. Smokin'.

But I thought I would do a little poll (if you can figure this out - depends on readers and file types I suppose for e-books - or use your best guess).

1. What is the largest file you have in your TBR (I know pictures can make it wonky but which one has lots of pages) or the fattest book on your paper TBR shelf?

2. How long have you had it waiting?

3. Do you really think you'll read it someday or is it just sitting there until you finally give up and pass it on or file it away?


My answers:

1. After All or Nothing my next largest book is Keeping Promise Rock by Amy Lane (3,487 KB).

2. I downloaded it on Jan. 30. Ack!

3. I will definitely read it because everyone has said how amazing it is, and how much it will make me cry. Sigh. So combine, big book + tears and I'm even more loathe to start it. I know I'll probably love it because I really enjoy Amy's work but I'm just a wimp. But I'm actually determined to read it next so I can say I got rid of my top two "big" books. Maybe it will make me feel better and then when I win the sequel at Chris' (hint hint), I'll be ready to roll.

And just because I know you were all excited thinking you were getting x-rated cookies based on the title, here's a couple of black and white cookies, but not x-rated. Sorry. Wrong blog. :-)

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The Puntabulous World Tour Comes to Ottawa

So rather than me driving all over North America for a change, a member of the Puntabugang came to visit me. Nathan V and his friend Esther came up to Ottawa for the Blues Fest and some touristy things and are staying with me. Nathan is a super guy, lots of fun, very outgoing and now a little sad because the Netherlands lost the World Cup final. But we drank Heineken during the match so that alleviated the pain somewhat. Esther is great too, they are excellent house guests.

My bunny took a real shine to Nathan. Usually he doesn't like to be out of his cage much but he sat on Nathan's lap quite a bit. We call him Bun but Nathan re-christened him Frank which he seemed to like. Perhaps we'll have to start calling him Frank now.

Nathan and Esther came by my office for the grand tour. We have some aboriginal art up this month so we got our picture taken by the big totem who looking at it appears to be licking our heads. They are at the Blues Fest tonight and hopefully not getting too wet, it's been a rainy day and I think they are heading back home after the concert tonight as Nathan has to perform with his orchestra Thursday. I may not see them if they get back late. Last night they got home late from going out with friends and we were up way too late chatting so I may crash before they get back. They've managed to get around at night on the buses and I've yet to receive a phone call saying they ended up at the wrong end of town, so it's all good.

It was great fun to meet Nathan, my fellow Project Runway contestant and Puntabugang member, and I look forward to seeing him again in Long Island in three weeks at the pool party.

I'm going to have very few "internet" friends left soon because if I keep meeting them they become "real life" friends. :-)

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Sunday Shorts

I don't post anything about books for a gazillion years and then you can't shut me up. :-) Hope everyone is having a great weekend.

Too Much Information by Glyn SoitiƱo (26 pages)
Torquere Books

This is the follow-up story to Only Human. Seth, Zahir's construct, has been happily living with Mike for about 6 months when he starts getting really bad headaches. When he has a seizure Mike calls Zahir who determines that he put too much information into Seth and his brain is overloading and he'll die if he can't remove some of the information, but what parts can he safely remove without changing who Seth is? This was not as engaging as Zahir/Zach's original story or Seth's, however it was only 26 pages and was focused almost entirely on Zahir trying to cure Seth so you didn't get much of a picture of how things really were for Seth and Mike as a couple or how Seth adapted to only being alive for a year. Fans of the series (aka me) will likely find it enjoyable but if you don't know the whole back-story it won't make much sense.

Sparks Fly by Kiernan Kelly (29 pages)
Torquere Books

It's July 4th and Riley is depressed. His boyfriend broke up with him after obviously using him to get a high ranking position in his father's fireworks company. That night he runs into his old friend Rocket who used to work for them and suddenly up and quit without a word. He's angry but is convinced to help Rocket put on the show for a local club and the reconnect when Rocket tells him why he really left and has some information to share about Riley's new step-mom and his ex. This was more serious than most of the author's work I've read. I felt it could have been much longer because I wanted to know more about Rocket and Riley and how it got to where it was and I was confused by the time-line. I did like the fact that Riley's rich powerful father didn't have a problem with his son being gay and didn't fall into the evil obnoxious father role that often turns up. It was an okay story but not one of my faves by this author.

Toy Box: Latex by Mychael Black, Jay Lygon, BA Tortuga (29 pages)
Torquere Books

Kor'inth by Mychael Black - Kor'inth is a dark elf who was banished because he had a relationship with a male. He comes from a male submissive culture and after two years alone approaches a BDSM club desiring to serve. He's approached by Soren, a vampire, who offers him something to wear and an escort. At his car he puts him in a latex outfit but they get so hot and heavy Soren decides to take him home instead. I'm not sure if this is part of a series or not. I did enjoy the descriptions of Kor'inth living in the woods.

Tail-Gators by Jay Lyon - Mike and his BF Kevin are getting ready to join Mike's parents for a tail-gating parting before the big football game. Mike invites Kevin's annoying room mate Carl even though he's super rude. After Mike and Kevin put on liquid latex football jerseys they go to the party and Carl is freaked because Mike's parents are famous Nobel prize winning chemists but he's such an ass they can't stand him either. It was cute with lots of playing between Mike and Kevin and I liked how snooty Carl got taken down a peg at the end.

Easy by BA Tortuga - Shane gets a package from his friends and it's liquid latex. As a surprise for Galen he makes a date to meet him for dinner. He arrives covered in black latex and not much else. They barely make it home before they get smexin' it up. This is part of a series obviously but I have no idea who the characters are. It was very steamy though and just as a little interlude piece it was good but it probably would be more interesting to people who know the characters and their backgrounds.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Saturday Summary

So we've finally got a bit of a break from the heat. Still hotter than "normal" but not that kind of heat that turns you into a giant slug who stands staring into the fridge for hours just to enjoy the cold air. I got some reading done or at least am motivated to post about that I read before.

Wings of Equity by Sean Kennedy (246 pages)
Dreamspinner Press

Ezra Kneebone (wildest name ever) and his female partner Jazz run a transport service using their small dirigible. Ezra has dreams of mass production for the common man but refuses to take money from Jazz's lover Lady Bart. He decides the best way to get the funds is to capture Icarus, a Robin Hood type figure who robs from the government and gives the money away. Things don't quite go according to plan and eventually both he and Icraus are shot and held captive. Ezra is finding himself more and more interested in Icarus personally and the adventures to rescue Ezra, and Icarus and Jazz begin. It's hard to describe because there is so much action. There are fights with other big ships in the sky, Jazz being rescued by Lady Bart when their ship is shot down, Ezra being rescued by Icarus and Jazz, Icarus being rescued by Ezra and Jazz. Chock full of adventure, with crashing burning ships, gun fights, the works. Jazz and Lady Bart are no mere sidekicks, they are smart and resourceful and snarky which I loved. The descriptions of all of the gadgets are really detailed and let you envision the ships and all of the Steampunkery. Hopefully we'll see more of the whole gang including Lee who has me curious. Another great read from Sean.

Blast from the Past by Stephani Hecht (86 pages)
eXtasy Books

Teacher Bailey got laid off and is forced to work in his sister's daycare to make ends meet. One day he runs into his old high school crush David who's picking up his nephew. David is a rich lawyer and was a senior when Bailey was a freshman. They have a small conversation and Bailey feels as much like a loser as ever around David. Thanks to the machinations of their mothers, they meet up again and they finally admit their attraction back in the day and David explains to a hurt Bailey why he never made a move back then. There are some flashbacks as Bailey and David remember certain incidents from their high school days which shows two perspectives to the same incident which is interesting. It only takes place over a 12 hour or so period with an epilogue but it's a cute little story about finally getting the man of your high school dreams.

Because It's True by Willa Okati (158 pages)
Loose Id

Ford learned to read signs from his Grandfather and one day while chatting with a delivery girl he determines the signs (birds, colors, winds, etc.) say he's going to meet the love of his life when the elevator opens. There is Gavin who works for a museum and after being abandoned by his fiance the night before their wedding he's sworn off men, especially men who look like Ford (or his ex). Ford wears him down though as he's 100% certain that Gavin is his life mate. While Gavin's not sure of the signs thing, they are getting along and decide to get married. All of a sudden Ford starts seeing all of these horrible signs that say they are doomed and he freaks out and it gets kind of deja vu-ish for poor Gavin. At first I was fine with the obsession with signs. It was kind of quirky and cute and then at the end where Ford basically was ready to toss everything because the wind was blowing funny and the sign was swinging and it rained. Hello? WTF is wrong with you man? And the ex showed up 3 years later which I thought was unnecessary. What I loved was Kayla the delivery girl who became a friend and sounding board first for Ford then for both. I liked her character a lot, I liked Gavin and Ford too until Ford got all freaky deaky at the end. So it was a disappointing end for me in that I felt the only reason he was with him was because of "signs" not that he necessarily loved him.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

I'm Melting, I'm melting .....

Yeah, yeah, whine whine whine. I know for people who live in Alabama or Perth or other places that could be confused with Hell in the summer 44C (or 111F) with the humidity is just another day in paradise. For us up here? Ack!!!! Our buildings and system are not set up to cope. My office faces the sun in the morning and it gets so hot the air conditioning just can't keep up. Even my window air conditioner at home can hardly make a dent in the heat in my bedroom. I'm really surprised there haven't been more power outages as we all struggle to get ourselves cooled down. We're supposed to get a break tomorrow, down to 90 instead of 110. Oh joy.

So as a result I haven't done hardly any reading because when I'm hot I just can't focus. I don't think I've finished one new book this week. I've flipped (electronically) through some older books and done some rereads but it's just a big fat blah. I've cooked nothing in an attempt not to turn on the stove. Last night I stopped at the store to get a precooked chicken and some buns. Tonight might be frozen dinners. I have an internet friend (and his friend) coming to stay with us this weekend so I've been trying to get my house cleaned up a bit, but it's tough to get motivated with the heat and I hope it cools down a bit before they get here so they can actually sleep and not wake up in a puddle of sweat.

So there's that. Nothing exciting, just trying to stay cool, (metaphotically at work as well as it was pretty close yesterday - it's going to be a rough year I think). Here are some hot cookies to keep you amused until I get my act together.