Happy 53rd Indepence Day, MALAYSIA!

Written by Darlyn At Tuesday, August 31, 2010 11 bookish peeps...
'Jalur Gemilang'

Malaysia, Truly Asia (yep,that's the motto). I love my country, and I love everything about it even though sometimes what I hate most is that no AUTHORS come here for book signings and or we get the latest released books 6 months late. lol. But the best thing about Malaysia, we are multiracial, Malay, Chinese, Indians, Ibanese, Dusun, Kadazan and the list could go on. But we are one as Malaysians. It's nothing special, really, but hey, who doesn't love their country, right?

But I need to ask, honestly, have you ever heard a country called Malaysia? Have you ever been in Malaysia? Just curious. LOL. Just now, I read Alice's post, fellow and good friend of Malaysian book blogger on 10 things to love about Malaysians. I wouldn't describe it better in any either way!

To my love, my country, Happy Independence Day, Malaysia. To all Malaysians, Selamat Hari Kemerdekaan!Now I miss all the celebrations.. =(


interview: Author Linda Weaver Clarke

Written by Darlyn At Monday, August 30, 2010 8 bookish peeps...
Today I would like to welcome Author Linda Weaver Clarke once again at Darlyn & Books. This interview is to celebrate the release of the newest book in The Adventures of John and Julia Evans: Mayan Intrigue.


D: You started writing with Historical Romance Fiction and now turned to Mystery/Suspense fiction called The Adventures of John and Julia Evans. How did you come up with the idea for this series?

LWC: The ancient American Indians, their way of life, and the subject of artifact theft have fascinated me a great deal. For example, with Anasazi Intrigue, I was interested in the Anasazi Indians right here in my valley. Who were they, where did they come from, how did they live? Many people wonder why they disappeared, leaving behind their belongings and valuables. Where did they go and why? There is much speculation about what might have happened. Some archaeologists believe that discord and tribal violence caused abandonment of the villages.

In my research, I found that archaeological thievery is becoming more and more of a problem every year. Did you know that an ancient funeral pit could be sold for $60,000 on the black market? Not to mention all the pottery, baskets, and pendants found by looters. Looting is only second to selling illegal drugs.

Did you know that archaeological theft has gone corporate, like any legal business? An article in the Las Vegas Newspaper was about a couple
men who were loading some artifacts in the trunk of their car. A ranger saw what they were doing and questioned them. He didn’t realize he had accidentally stumbled upon the largest operation around. They recovered more than 11,100 relics. It’s a very intriguing subject and I enjoyed learning so much in my research.


D: In this new series, you write about the adventures of John and Julia. What made you decide to write about a married couple as the main characters?

LWC: When I was young, one of my favorite television shows was Hart to Hart, which featured a married couple investigating and solving crimes. The couple was madly in love–you laughed at the humor and sighed at the romance. I wanted to create something similar, with good old-fashioned values along with a little suspense and adventure. In this series Julia is a reporter for a daily newspaper and John is a professional knife maker. Just like Hart to Hart, because of Julia’s curiosity she gets herself into a bunch of trouble. Before long, she finds herself and her husband up to their necks in danger and running for their lives.


D: Mayan Intrigue really fascinates me as it's being mixed with history and artifacts. Was there a lot of research when you were writing it?

LWC: Yes. I learned so much about the Mayan culture, their beliefs and traditions. They were such an amazing people. While researching Mayan Intrigue, my eyes were opened to the problems they have in southern Mexico. When an ancient ruin is discovered, it doesn’t take long for thieves to take it apart. The reason why is because the Mayas used astrological alignments when planning their city. Looters have learned the layout of the Mayan cities so they know where to dig. With this knowledge, they can loot a sacred temple in a few days. While writing Mayan Intrigue, I found that artifact theft in Mexico has been taken over by drug dealers from Columbia. In other words, since organized crime has taken over, there is also an increase of violence. I ask myself, can anything be done to save Ancient American history? Yes. If no one bought the artifacts, that would put a damper on artifact theft.


D: The series is getting more adventurous and I don't think it will stop there. How many books are planned for this series?

LWC: I have four books in this series: Anasazi Intrigue, Mayan Intrigue, Montezuma Intrigue, and Desert Intrigue.



D: I've realized that each book in the series sets in a different place. Would you tell us where the setting will take place next and a little hint about the book perhaps?

LWC: Mayan Intrigue takes place in southern Mexico. The discovery of a priceless artifact puts Julia’s life in great danger! From valuable artifacts to shady businessmen, the Yucatan Peninsula becomes a dangerous vacation spot for John and Julia Evans. When Julia accidentally comes upon a couple suspicious men exchanging an item, she quickly turns and leaves but it is too late. Check out the book trailer for Mayan Intrigue at YouTube and leave a comment. This gives you the feel of what it’s about.


D: If you could portray John and Julia, who will be your choice of actor and actress and why?

LWC: The perfect couple would have been Robert Wagner and Stephanie Powers from Hart to Hart. But as for today’s actors, I don’t know whom to choose. That’s very hard.


D: Oh my! Hart to Hart is created by Sidney Sheldon and he is like my all time favorite author! Even though I never watch it. Okay, so last but not least, is there anything else you want to share with the readers?

LWC: It’s very important to teach children the joy of reading because it works on their creativity. Writing helps to express one’s innermost feelings. Many times, writing can be a healing process. Whether it’s fiction or nonfiction, if children learn to write, they can learn to express themselves much better. In fact, one library asked me to teach a group of troubled teens, ones who had problems. These kids were so interested and interacted with me so well. It was a wonderful experience.

For those interested in learning more, please visit my official website. Right now I’m having a book give away for Mayan Intrigue beginning August 30 to September 6 at my blog.

Thanks for the fun interview, Darlyn.


About the author

Linda Weaver Clarke travels throughout the United States, teaching a “Family Legacy Workshop” at libraries, encouraging others to write their family history and autobiography. Clarke is the author of the historical romance series, “A Family Saga in Bear Lake, Idaho” and a new mystery series, “The Adventures of John and Julia Evans.”

She also welcome readers to her blog and website at;

Linda Weaver Clarke Blog and her Official Website

Thanks so much to you too Linda. I have to say I'm agreed when she said we have to teach children the joy of reading. Even I started reading because my mom bought so many English books when I was a kid. Even though she don't really know English.

Thanks again Linda! It is fun to have an interview with you! Guys, don't forget to enter her celebration giveaway. Click HERE to enter. Open to US and Canada.

memories of midnight by sidney sheldon

Written by Darlyn At Saturday, August 28, 2010 13 bookish peeps...
Title: Memories of Midnight
Author: Sidney Sheldon
Pages: 416
Rating: 4/5

Summary:

A sequel of The Other Side of Midnight. Catherine lost her memory and wound up in a convent in the care of nuns. She is later taken in by shipping tycoon Constantin Demiris and given a job in his Trade Corporation office in London. Catherine is actually Catherine Douglas, a woman believed to have been murdered by her husband Larry and his mistress Noelle Page. Noelle was also the mistress of Constantin and he had set up the trial lawyers so that Larry and Noelle would be executed. Catherine's emergence causes a threat of exposure to Constantin and he hires Atanas to assassinate her.

My Say:

It's another re-read, as last few days I've read The Other Side of Midnight, I thought I have to read this one too. I never expect less from Sidney Sheldon. The elements of surprise and a brilliant twist always hit me. The book is actually a great conclusion to The Other Side of Midnight. I loved seeing how everything wrapped up, and finally Costantin got the final blow of what was coming to him. That is totally a satisfaction to a reader like me that loathe him!

Sheldon did an outstanding job captivating my attention. He held my interest from the beginning, to the very end. As I was reading along the story I began to comprehend the plot and relate to the first book. As expected, Constantin was a man not to be taken lightly. He was feared as much as he was loved, a mastermind that almost everything seemed to go his way. I never thought he would take Catherine and save her only to avenge his grudge from his past.

Catherine, being naive and lost her memories, was tortured by her past because she couldn't remember it and until she got out of her safe haven. She thought Costantin as her savior without knowing she was about to be assassinated. Like The Other Side of Midnight, Sidney Sheldon was very suspenseful, a master of plot twisting and a great story teller.

The book is a page turner, fast pace and a brilliant read indeed. I've read quite many suspense and thriller books with good plot twisting. However, Sidney Sheldon is always on my top of masters of plot twister author as I truly found his books always have brilliant twist. I recommend this book to anyone who has a sense of suspense, thrill and adventure.

the friday 56 #15

Written by Darlyn At Friday, August 27, 2010 10 bookish peeps...
Dear Dylan by Siobhan Curham

Dear Georgie,

I was online checking out botox injections (it really comes to something when you’re considering paralysing your forehead in order to look more youthful!) when your message just pinged into my inbox. How exciting!! The heavens really do seem to be smiling upon you and I’m so pleased, darling because it’s no more than you deserve.


*Check out my review HERE.

Credit: Tonya @ Story Time With Tonya and Friends hosted this fun weekly meme. Click HERE to join the fun!

giveaway flash: ARCs Galore Contest

Written by Darlyn At Friday, August 27, 2010 3 bookish peeps...

A NEW International Giveaway at Carol's Prints!

There are a lot of ARCs available for winning. Just head up over at Ms Carolina Valdez Miller's webpage to enter! And please mention that I send you there =)

Giveaway ends September 6, 2010. So hurry and here are just a few of the ARCs available for winning.

the other side of midnight by sidney sheldon

Written by Darlyn At Thursday, August 26, 2010 13 bookish peeps...
Title: The Other Side of Midnight
Author: Sidney Sheldon
Pages: 608
Rating: 5/5

Summary:

Beautiful Noelle Page meets dashing WWII American pilot Larry Douglas in France and falls in love. She expects him to marry her, but instead Larry abandons her. In the United States, successful Catherine Alexander meets Larry Douglas and they marry. But Noelle hasn't forgotten Larry even as she's become a successful actress. She maneuvers to have Larry hired as the private pilot of her wealthy and powerful lover Constantin Demiris so she can seek revenge on him, but instead she and Larry rekindled their passion. Desperate to be together, Larry and Noelle make deadly plans. But soon the lovers face a terrible fate determined by the jealous Constantin using Catherine as his pawn.

My Say:

Heart-gripping but totally wicked. I read this book when I was in high school and loved so very much. But that time it was borrowed and now I got my own personal copy. As this is my second read of the book, I was really glad I feel the same way I felt the first time I read it. Even much better.

It has got to be the most suspenseful book where you do not see the twist until at the very end. It is a brilliant twist! The storyline was utterly amazing and he had such a masterful mind. And the book is totally a masterpiece. There are three element of story; love, revenge and jealousy. It has other elements but these three is the biggest ingredients of contribution in the book.

I never read a character like Constantin. He is a man that never forgives and he hold his grudge like forever. I even feel worried whenever I read his part or side of story. You should read how he gained his wealth, totally manipulative and but brilliant for a scoundrel. Larry is a character that I despise most. He's a heart breaker and if he kept his promise to Noelle everything would be a happy ending. I felt sorry for Noelle but what she did to win Larry back is such unforgivable and I think Larry and Noelle deserve for what they committed. Whilst they found guilty, and the plead the guilty,well I have never thought what monster Constantin was. It was totally quite unfair and I don't see it coming. What I could say is, he used/involved his power and wealth to make them executed by a firing squad! They deserved the punishment even though it's mean and inhumane and Constantin won in silence. Catherine, Larry's wife on the other hand, lost her memory and nearly died. She is the sorriest character and I felt so angry when it comes to the ending. But, it was a very brilliant read.

Every reader that enjoys a compelling mystery with a final shocking twist will want to read this book. I will re-read the book again. Have you read Sidney Sheldon? Which book and will you share what you think?

*Credit: This review is taking part in Radiant Reviews, hosted by Crissie @ Chrissie Corner. Click HERE for more information

shadow music by julie garwood

Written by Darlyn At Wednesday, August 25, 2010 16 bookish peeps...
Title: Shadow Music (Highland's Laird #3)
Author: Julie Garwood
Pages: 438
Rating: 4/5

Summary (Back Cover):

For Princess Gabrielle of St. Biel, Scotland is a land of stunning vistas, wild chieftains, treacherous glens, and steep shadows–skullduggery, betrayal, and now murder. Prized for her exquisite beauty, the daughter of one of England’s most influential barons, Gabrielle is also a perfect bargaining chip for a king who needs peace in the Highlands: King John has arranged Gabrielle’s marriage to a good and gentle laird. But this marriage will never take place. For Gabrielle, everything changes in one last burst of freedom–when she and her guards come upon a scene of unimaginable cruelty. With one shot from her bow and arrow, Gabrielle takes a life, saves a life, and begins a war.

Within days, the Highlands are aflame with passions as a battle royal flares between enemies old and new. Having come to Scotland to be married, Gabrielle is instead entangled in Highland intrigue. For two sadistic noblemen, underestimating Gabrielle’s bravery and prowess may prove fatal. But thanks to a secret Gabrielle possesses, Colm MacHugh, the most feared man in Scotland, finds a new cause for courage. Under his penetrating gaze, neither Gabrielle’s body nor heart is safe.

My Review:

I was surprised by how interesting the story is. It's just not about romance as what I like most of the book is the history that being described in the book. I've never read about Scottish settings before and this one really amazed me. It's quite slow at the beginning, telling the myth of St. Biel and all about so many competitive barons, lairds and even the King of England is portrayed as ruthless and arrogant. It sounds pretty fierce of how they fight each other to own others land and kingdom. But it really works for me.

Gabrielle character is witty, stubborn, hard-headed but kind, gentle, naive and really brave. She saved Colm's brother from grave danger, nearly being cut into half, and tend him to a healer but keeping it secret to save the predicament of saving him from starting a war between the Highland's Lairds. Her act of random kindness put herself in a shame as she being accused, but she decided to not defend herself. Being banished from her country, her father and her homeland left her alone except 4 guardians and Colm's wing man, apparently Gabrielle's husband's cousin suggested that he takes her under his protection.

Colm is a warrior, never do love as he thinks love is woman's talk. He's mysterious, bold and I can't stop imagine him in a Scottish outfit. Every time at the parts when he avoided to see or meet Gabrielle are the most cute part and it's funny how it makes Gabrielle crazy just to have a moment to talk to him whenever he keeps avoiding her. Their characters are in a perfect chemistry and I feel connected to them. Their love is sweet, gentle and honest. The only flaw, it has so many secondary and even tertiary characters to remember. It's quite distracting.

All in all, it's a pleasant read and very enjoyable. Recommended to all historical fiction/romance.

Credit: This book review is link up to Book Review Party Wednesday at Cym Lowell Blog.

guest post: Author Scott Nicholson

Written by Darlyn At Tuesday, August 24, 2010 19 bookish peeps...
I would like to welcome Scott Nicholson, a Paranormal Thrillers author to Darlyn & Books. I've read one of his amazing book, The Red Church and you can read my review here.

The New Era of Reading

You probably grew up with paper books if you’re reading this blog. If you are like me, you probably get nostalgic over the smell of a book, or remember the bright colors on the pages of your first books and the great feeling of sitting on a lap while someone read to you.

But nearly one in 10 books sold is now a digital book, and the revolution is gathering speed. I’d dabbled in ebooks six or seven years ago, and like most people, I didn’t want to sit at a computer and read a book. I wasn’t keeping up with technology, and the Kindle has now met readers and readers at a place called “affordable convenience.”

When I experimented by putting out The Red Church in January, it was almost an act of desperation. The book had been out of print for five years, even though it had sold very well, and my last book on the shelves was in 2007. The publishing industry had changed so much that I wasn’t sure my books would work there any more, and even if I did, the wait would mean it would probably be 2012 before I had another book out.



The Red Church immediately found a new audience and that was very satisfying—not just a chance to get some sales and make income, but a chance to share that story and those ideas with readers. And that is the biggest advantage of the digital age: all work can be available instantly, all over the world, at all times. I was so pleased with the reaction and the ability to connect with readers again that I put out two original paranormal thrillers: Drummer Boy and Speed Dating with the Dead, as well as the suspense thriller The Skull Ring and three story collections. I love it.

More than anything, I love the instant new community of readers and writers I’ve found through ebooks and primarily the Kindle. Readers can email me in the middle of the book and are not just shaping the commercial landscape, they are helping create the content by sharing what they like and don’t like.

With my wife at a comic convention.
She's only read one of my books but I love her anyway.


In fact, I am working on a new idea that will put readers right into the book if they want. And readers also benefit from the digital age because they have more power over pricing than ever before, and their purchases will directly influence the market. I’ve heard wonderful stories about the ability to change text sizes that has helped people with vision impairment rediscover books, and teachers taking Kindles into classrooms. I am embarking on a Kindle giveaway tour from September through November, because the device has launched Act II of my career. You can learn details here.

You don’t have to fear change—digital books are putting the future in your hands.


About the author


Scott Nicholson is an author of 12 novels, four story collections, six screenplays, and four comics series. He’s also a freelance writer and journalist in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina.

You can visit his web site HERE




Thanks so much Scott for your time at Darlyn & Books! I really agree with him. An E-Reader would probably change our reading, in a good way. I will need to get one though. =)

giveaway flash: hometown girl by michele ashman bell

Written by Darlyn At Monday, August 23, 2010 3 bookish peeps...
(Book Give-Away August 23 - 30: for those interested in Hometown Girl, leave a comment about this review with your e-mail at http://lindaweaverclarke.blogspot.com. International.)



Hometown Girl is a delightful romance full of humor. When Jocelyn moves into the home she inherited from her grandmother, the laughter begins. One thing after another happens to her while fixing up the home, which is in need of great repair. Read the review by Linda Weaver Clarke and win Michele’s new book.

the red church by scott nicholson

Written by Darlyn At Sunday, August 22, 2010 14 bookish peeps...
Title: The Red Church
Author: Scott Nocholson
Pages: 182 (e-Book, pdf)
Rating: 3.5/5

Summary (Amazon):

For 13-year-old Ronnie Day, life is full of problems: Mom and Dad have separated, his brother Tim is a constant pest, Melanie Ward either loves him or hates him, and Jesus Christ won't stay in his heart. Plus he has to walk past the red church every day, where the Bell Monster hides with its wings and claws and livers for eyes. But the biggest problem is that Archer McFall is the new preacher at the church, and Mom wants Ronnie to attend midnight services with her.

Sheriff Frank Littlefield hates the red church for a different reason. His little brother died in a freak accident at the church twenty years ago, and now Frank is starting to see his brother's ghost. And the ghost keeps demanding, "Free me." People are dying in Whispering Pines, and the murders coincide with McFall's return.

The Days, the Littlefields, and the McFalls are descendants of the original families that settled the rural Appalachian community. Those old families share a secret of betrayal and guilt, and McFall wants his congregation to prove its faith. Because he believes he is the Second Son of God, and that the cleansing of sin must be done in blood.

My Say:

First of all, the church in this book really is red. I thought it just portrayed as a dark and horror about it. I have to admit I never read a horror genre books. Maybe I've read RL Stine's Goosebumps or Christopher Pike's Witch before, but it was hardly a horror like Scott Nicholson. When Scott emailed and asked if I'm interested to review his book, I think I have to grab the chance. If I don't have that kind of motivation, I don't think I'll read a horror books nowadays. And Stephen King is never on my list. Maybe I easily chicken out.

My Opinion:

This is a brilliant horror story that I ever read. The story is very engaging and I was left wanting to know more. Honestly, I stop reading for a few days nearly at the middle of the read because I have to pull my guts to continue reading it. There's a lot of mysteries and supernatural horror incidents in the story, it really creeps me out a few times.

Apart from religion's faith and believes, I found the book very original and Scott's writing style is very good. He really did it very well to relate the past and present's setting along with the characters and it sounds so believable. Ronnie's and Frank's character are very strong and I like how he portrayed their characters. And other than creepiness, the book also a page turner, a fast pace read and if you are strong enough, you wouldn't hold on for a few days like me. And all the horror scenes are just that horror! Sometimes I don't remember I hold my breath for so long that I nearly sweat. (May be I am just that scaredy-cat).

I can't compare the book with any other horror books as this is actually my first time reading a 'true' horror book. Nonetheless, I really recommend you guys to read the book and enjoy the creepiness of it. See how your it gets your spine.
And just for the record, I read this only during day time, just to get me out of nightmares.

Disclaimer:I received the review copy courtesy of the author, Scott Nicholson. Though I received the book in exchange for fair review, these are my honest opinions and in no way will ever reflected my review.

Note: The review is linked up with CEP. For more information, heads to YA Addict.

stuck with you by trish jensen

Written by Darlyn At Saturday, August 21, 2010 8 bookish peeps...
Title: Stuck With You
Author: Trish Jensen
Pages: 368
Rating: 3.5/5

Summary (Goodreads):

As lawyers on opposing sides of a messy divorce case, Paige Hart and Ross Bennett ought to have kept matters purely professional, yet Paige and Ross came to loathe each other with an intensity that was strictly personal. The bad blood between them takes on an unexpected new dimension when the infuriated pair is forced to share a hospital room, when they're quarantined after being exposed to the rare and highly contagious Tibetan Concupiscence Virus that's reputed to shift sensual desire into high gear. When symptoms (which a non-medical person might mistake for pure and simple lust) start showing up way ahead of schedule, the lawyers' objections to each other are overruled and they enjoy every minute of it. But, after the doctors declare that the disease has run its course, Paige and Ross are still feverish with a longing for one another that they hope will never be cured. When the verdict comes in, will they be sentenced to life in love?

My Thought:

This trend toward funny, sexy contemporary oriented romance is something like I kind of enjoy of reading it. It is quite unbelievable regarding to the virus issue, but overall, it could be very cute to read two hard-headed lawyers fall for each other in a funny situation. I never heard of the virus and I don't mind of how crappy that is.

The main characters are sweet, witty, both sides are very arrogant and act like cat and dog. Until they have to spend their quarantine together for a while until the experts figure out the cure. Although they part of the story is quite enjoyable to read, the secondary characters, Paige's brother and their doctor for the case are actually known each other like forever until they broke up for some misunderstanding. How their love reincarnated together is somewhat more sweet and pretty endearing to me. I still love the main characters but as much as I like the secondary characters too.

The story is fun, sometime hilarious and I lough or smile a lot whenever I read the dialogues and they quite incredible as hate each-other-lover. I'm enjoying reading the book and it's a quite a page turner. Only that, I don't find any ups and downs or climax of the story, it's just linear but a fun read. You probably want to read it leisurely in one or two sittings and might want to re-read it again sometime soon after that.

giveaway flash: $100 for books @ grab a pen

Written by Darlyn At Saturday, August 21, 2010 3 bookish peeps...

Tahereh @ Grab A Pen is generous enough to offer $100 for her followers to shop for your favorite books!!!

Click HERE to enter.

Open internationally and ends Sunday, 8/22.

the friday 56 #14

Written by Darlyn At Friday, August 20, 2010 9 bookish peeps...


“Are we ready to leave?”

“Yes, we are, Captain. President Williamson has already left for the future and I guess we‟re supposed to go about changing history.”





Credit: Tonya @ Story Time With Tonya and Friends hosted this fun weekly meme. Click HERE to join the fun!

love only once by johanna lindsey

Written by Darlyn At Thursday, August 19, 2010 7 bookish peeps...
Title: Love Only Once (Malory Family #1)
Author: Johanna Lindsey
Pages: 344
Rating: 4/5

Summary (Amazon):

The exquisite niece of Lord Edward and Lady Charlotte Malory, Regina Ashton is abducted by Nicholas Eden an arrogant seducer hardened by a painful secret from his past. Reggie has vowed to marry the golden-haired rogue who has besmirched her good name and succeeded to make her heart beat faster than any man could make. But her beauty only stirs Nicholas's passion giving rise to dangerous misunderstandings and a love that can live only once in a lifetime. Things really start to pick up as Nicholas does his best to escape matrimony and Regina tries her hardest to make him love her. There are numerous misunderstandings, painful words and harsh feelings between them and things really get complicated when it turns out Nicholas has a very dangerous enemy. As the story unfolds, you'll find the pages nearly turn themselves.

My Say:

I really have problems when I'm writing a historical romance review. Sometime I found them very stereotype and most of the stories have the same thing. A very handsome guy and a very beautiful woman. However, every time I read one, I still love and enjoy it in any way.

Nicholas is of course as stated, a very arrogant and it started when he thought he kidnapped his mistress but he kidnapped Regina instead. Things could go worst as he kind of insulted Regina physically and Regina thinks she has to make Nicholas her husband.

Nicholas character is somewhat mystery as I can't help to wonder what happened to him in his past. He keep everything to himself and never try to be open with his feelings with his newly wed wife Regina. Soon, Regina is left alone after her wedding, pregnant and has to deal with Nicholas's strict and cold-hearted mother. I really like it every time Regina is facing her mother-in-law's tantrum (Do MIL always that mean?). Regina is strong-hearted, witty, bright and very intelligent. She just know how to win her husband's heart.

Not only is the story of Regina and Nicholas excellent on it's own, the secondary characters are great (her Uncles) and I think they should have their story part themselves and they actually have. I have a few books of the series but not in orderly sequence but I think each book is great even as a stand alone book.

It's an enjoyable read and passionate too. Recommended to all historical romance fans!

Note: The review is also take part in Radiant Reviews hosted by Chrissie at Chrissie's Corner. Click HERE for more information.

giveaway flash: 100 followers giveway @ readaholics anonymous

Written by Darlyn At Thursday, August 19, 2010 1 bookish peeps...
Dana over at Readaholics Anonymous is having a giveaway for her blog 100 followers! Yeay!

The prize? One lucky Public Follower on GFC will be able to win a great summer tote with lots of extras inside!

Heads up to her blog and click HERE to enter. Ends 8/25. Good luck!

the ghost by danielle steel

Written by Darlyn At Wednesday, August 18, 2010 9 bookish peeps...
Title: The Ghost
Author: Danielle Steel
Pages: 444
Rating: 5/5

Summary (Amazon):

Architect Charles Waterston has a job he loves, a charming and beautiful wife, and an idyllic life in London. But when everything comes crashing down around him--his wife leaving him for another man and his sudden transfer back to the New York home office--Charles takes a well-deserved ski vacation in Vermont. When an unexpected snowstorm strands Charles in a small town, he takes refuge in a small bed-and-breakfast. The proprietor, an elderly widow, also owns a family home in the woods, which Charles decides to rent. Soon after moving in, Charles senses a ghostly presence. While investigating in the attic one day, Charles discovers the diary of Sarah Ferguson, who left her abusive husband in England for a better life in the New World. Charles soon finds himself drawn to Sarah, and he even visits the local historical society in an attempt to learn more about her. There he meets lovely, timid Francesca Vironnet, the historical society curator and librarian, who has fled France with her young daughter. Through Sarah's journals and Francesca's kindness, Charles is able to heal his heart and learn to love again.

My Thought:

It's a heartfelt story that I just couldn't resist. I just finished this book and I loved it. It is a very good story and I loved reading about Francois and Sarah. Their story is so heartwarming and inspiring. As Charlie said while reading the journals, Sarah and Francois life experience almost feel real to me. Although I kind of hoping that Sarah is really a ghost that physically communicating with Charlie instead she just wanders around and makes only one time appearance to Charlie, and never speak to him. However, as the story goes on, Sarah is actually giving Charlie some hints to her journals. Although the story is predictable, I grow fond of it and it almost makes me cry bucket to learn Sarah's adventures and misfortunes.

It is a very simple story, an easy read, a page turner and almost a heart-wrecking read. Other than Charlie finally learns that he has to move on with his life and cherishes people around you, I too has learn quite a great deal by reading the book as a little motivation to move on forward. As always, Steel's stories really get me hooked up and love.

teaser tuesdays: the red church

Written by Darlyn At Tuesday, August 17, 2010 31 bookish peeps...

The Red Church by Scott Nicholson

"The eyes can play tricks. In my psychology classes, they taught us that bad memories can trigger—"

Littlefield sliced his palm across the air to silence her.

"I don't give a damn about theories. I know what I saw."

page 39.


Credit: Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Click HERE for more information.

giveaway flash: imprints by rachel ann nunes

Written by Darlyn At Tuesday, August 17, 2010 2 bookish peeps...
Linda Weaver Clarke is hosting an interview and giveaway with Romance Author Rachel Ann Nunes at her blog. Whoever interested on winning a copy of the book; Imprints, simply leave a comment with your email about the interview at her blog. Click HERE to enter! Ends August 23rd, 2010. Open to US and Canada.

A little snippet about the book

A young woman is missing. In desperation, her parents turn to Autumn Rain for help. Autumn reads imprints - emotions mysteriously left behind on certain treasured objects. But will this ability enrich her life or destroy it? Autumn isn't sure - her life has become far from normal - but for people whose loved ones are missing, her talent might mean the difference between life and death. Even the infuriating Detective Martin has asked for Autumn's help, though at times she feels more like a suspect than a consultant. Too often Autumn find herself retreating to her antiques shop and the company of her best friend, Jake Ryan, to avoid notice. But soon more than one woman is missing, and Autumn teams up with private eye Ethan McConnell to investigate their disappearance. Ethan's attraction to her is a pleasant change from Jake's frustrating offers of friendship, but once Autumn takes that first step, she sets in motion a series of events that risk not only her own life but the lives of those she cares most about.

giveaway flash: 1027 followers and birthday blow out giveaway

Written by Darlyn At Tuesday, August 17, 2010 1 bookish peeps...
Larissa @ Welcome To Larissa's Bookish Life is hosting a very big giveaway with a load of prizes to winners.

Click HERE to enter.

Open Internationally and ends 10/11.

stake that! by mari mancusi

Written by Darlyn At Monday, August 16, 2010 14 bookish peeps...
Title: Stake That! (Blood Coven #2)
Author: Mari Mancusi
Pages: 130 (e-Book, pdf)
Rating: 3/5

Summary (Goodreads):

Rayne McDonald had it all figured out. Get turned into a vampire, become the mate of the Blood Coven leader, and live the high-life for all eternity. Too bad the head vamp took a bite out of her twin sister by mistake. Now, not only is Rayne still not a vampire, but she learns she's a slayer instead—destined to destroy vamps gone bad.

After being recruited by a secret organization, Rayne is given her first mission: infiltrate a seedy bar downtown and expose its vampire owner, Maverick, for purposely spreading a nasty blood virus. Luckily the Blood Coven sends some help—in the form of sexy vampire Jareth. Will vampire and slayer be able to settle their differences and work together to bring down the evil Maverick? Or will they find their own hearts on the line?


My Say:

Hmm..I know, it's not a good way to start a review. I have a mix feeling about the book and I really don't know if I like it. I did enjoy reading the book and have to admit that it has a lot of humor in it which is okay. The story continues exactly at the part where Rayne is been told that she's actually born as a vampire slayer. Note that she actually dying to be a creature of the night but her twin got so lucky, even became the Queen of the Blood Coven.

The second book focus on Rayne's perspectives. Rayne's character is developed this time and the whole part of the slayer mission kind of make her cool and more like Buffy-ish. Having Jareth, a new character as a Blood Coven General really makes the story more interesting. In fact, his character as a quite cold and mystery guy shakes Rayne's world and yes, he's so hot in a bad boy way that we all like.

The only thing that quite bothering me is the way the story is written. It is written in blog writing entries (even with comments from her friends, Sunny and also anonymous), so many OMG-style, and war video games conservations. It is kind of different and quit risky but yes, worth to try since it has interesting plot which outcomes the flaw. It is light and easy read, fun and enjoyable, but I wont recommend you to buy it. Read a borrowed copy from library or friend. I'm hoping the next installment would be better.

the friday 56 #13

Written by Darlyn At Friday, August 13, 2010 12 bookish peeps...

Zoya by Danielle Steel


What did he means? Had they killed him? It was four o'clock in the afternoon... four o'clock and their entire world had come to an end...but Nicholas...had they killed him too?...like Konstatin and Nikolai...





Credit: Tonya @ Story Time With Tonya and Friends hosted this fun weekly meme. Click HERE to join the fun!

blog award #14: interesting blog

Written by Darlyn At Thursday, August 12, 2010 12 bookish peeps...
I have got this award quite sometime and I forgot. I really really forgot. But this award need to be shared and pass on and I don't want to keep it just for myself. Furthermore, I don't think my blog is that interesting and sometime I feel that my blog is quite boring LOL. So, I would like to pass this on to other 7 lucky bloggers friends that I think they have quite interesting blog and personalities. Actually I think all you bloggers are.

1) Misty @ Book Rat
2) Stacy @ A Novel Source
3) Becky @ Page Turners
4) Stella @ Ex Libris
5) Julia @ Manga Maniac Cafe
6) Aik @ Friends and Family
7) Stacey @ Page Turners Blog

Congratulations guys! I have a few other blog awards to be pass on but that need a little time. Just for a record, each blog of you are interesting and great. It's quite hard to pick 7 and I hope I could give to all of you. Check out these blogs, they are cool (well, you all are!).

Thanks for being you!

giveaway flash: 1000 followers giveaway

Written by Darlyn At Thursday, August 12, 2010 1 bookish peeps...
Jennifer over at Reading With Tequila is celebrating for her 1000 Followers! She is so generous to give away a lot of GOOD books! So many! So go forth and enter =)

And one more thing, for every 50 new followers, she'll add up new winner and so on. It's open Internationally and ends 9/30.

Click HERE to enter.

WWW +Wo Wednesday #4

Written by Darlyn At Wednesday, August 11, 2010 22 bookish peeps...
Hi guys! Before heads up for WWW and WoW, just want to share something with you. Today is a great day for me as a Muslim because the month of Ramadhan is finally arrives. In this Holy Month of Ramadhan 1st, I sincerely would like to seek forgiveness from all of you my dear friends, if I have done anything wrong, hurt your feelings unintentionally, even if I'm not contributing very much during the whole time I'm blogging, or just anything, please forgive me. Thanks so much for being dearest friends. I am truly happy to find so many great friends out there, wherever you all are. Also, last but not least, Happy Ramadhan to other Muslim friends, may Allah Ta’ala enable us to make this Ramadhan a month where we will truly attain Taqwa.

Aameen.

So, back to business;

This week's most anticipated "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:

Darkest Mercy (Wicked Lovely #5) by Melissa Marr (February 22nd, 2011)


Love, despair, and betrayal ignite the faery courts, and in the final conflict, some will win…and some will lose everything.


I have not read any of the the books in the series yet, even though I have them on the shelf. LOL


What did I recently finished reading?

Honeymoon by Amy Jenkins

Something incredible happens to Honey on her wedding night. She met Love of Her Life on her wedding honeymoon!

This is a book that will show you about soul mates, romance and destiny. I find it sweet, funny and sometimes hilarious!



What am I currently reading?

The Red Church by Scott Nicholson

For twenty years, the red church has stood empty. Crumbling to ruin, it has become a site for Halloween pranks and the setting for ghost stories, including one about the thing that lives in the bell tower, a creature being blamed for a brutal murder that occurred in the church s graveyard.


What I will read next?

Say You Love Me by Johanna Lindsey

Left penniless and in dire straits, Kelsey Langton realizes that only by allowing herself to be sold at auction can she rescue her sister's future. So the proud, desperate lady enters the infamous House of Eros, resigned to becoming some well-heeled gentleman's plaything, and Lord Derek Malory is the highest bidder for Kelsey's charms.


So, what's your WWW or WOW this week? Leave a link so I can visit yours!

*Credit: "Waiting On Wednesdays" is hosted by Jill of Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

**Credit: "WWW Wednesdays" is hosted by MizB over at Should Be Reading.

honeymoon by amy jenkins

Written by Darlyn At Tuesday, August 10, 2010 16 bookish peeps...
Title: Honeymoon
Author: Amy Jenkins
Pages: 360
Rating: 4/5

Synopsis (Barnes&Noble) :

Something incredible happens to Honey on her wedding night. She walks out onto the balcony of her New York hotel suite - the warmth of the night, the complimentary champagne, the gloriously illuminated skyline are all so utterly perfect - turns, and there, standing on the neighboring bridal suite balcony, is the love of her life, the man she spent only one night with seven years ago and has never seen again. Until now. On her honeymoon.

My Say:

I love the book. I love the story of it. Well, except her name is actually Honeymoon. Honey would be okay but not Honeymoon. Apart from that, the book was refreshing and sweet. It's a story about Honey, about to get married but not really confident that Ed is the one.

Would you rather left your husband and escape with someone that you think he's love of your life even after 7 years? Well, I would probably ends up like Honey too if I were in her shoes. She thought that Ed would never be someone that she really love. He just her escape boat or maybe her last resort to be on the safe side. It may sounds not cool, but the story is actually focusing on a woman's decision before she regrets of what it would be if she just let the opportunity escape even if she has to hurt somebody.

I especially love the ending
, very sweet. It is kind of expected and I thought I might be wrong. Seriously, I believe love at first sight. Since it happened to me. But I never believe to have my dream guy because I don't. The book tells you that too. You probably would think the same as I am if you read the book. I found it very sweet, funny and sometimes hilarious, fast pace with a focus on love that either because you want him to be or someone who really wants you. This is a book that will show you about soul mates, romance and destiny. What's more, you will enjoy and love the book!

guest post: Author Chris Dolley

Written by Darlyn At Monday, August 09, 2010 2 bookish peeps...
Hi guys! Remember I told you before that I love a certain True Crime Memoir book before? You can read my book review HERE! Today I'm so delighted to have and welcome Chris Dolley, the author of French Fried: one man’s move to France with too many animals and an identity thief. at Darlyn & Books! (p/s: Read till the end for the giveaway!)

That Which Doesn’t Kill You...


Moving house can be traumatic at the best of times. But when you’re moving countries as well and taking three cats, two horses, and an enormous puppy with you. And there’s a storm lashing the English Channel on the day of your ferry crossing. And ten minutes after hitting French soil, a fierce gust of wind rips the roof off your horsebox leaving you and your menagerie sitting outside Calais in a convertible horse transporter.

You begin to wonder if maybe Fate is trying to tell you something. Go back to England! It’s safer.

We didn’t listen, and for the next eight months not only did things continue to go wrong but they did so in such unusual ways. Like buying a car and finding we couldn’t drive it. Not because there was anything wrong with the car but because we couldn’t get it taxed. The road tax was only ten pounds but no one would take our money. We were passed from office to office. Even though we had all the documentation, it was never the right documentation. Our passports were waved away as insufficient proof of identity. No, we had to have a French carte de sejour instead – something that took up to three months to issue!

Not that we had three months. After being flagged down at a police roadblock I’d been given three days to produce all the car’s documentation – including the road tax. Why was I driving an untaxed car? Because the garage had given me a special document – an ‘I’m applying for the right documents, please let me pass’ waiver. That was waved away too. The police had never heard of it.

A car under house arrest soon became the least of our worries. Our new home had no heating or hot water. That’s when we discovered that the previous owner had been a man of rare talent. A man whose favourite toy as a child must have been an erector set. A man with a passion for copper pipe and a desire to do his own plumbing. And what a lot of plumbing! He populated the house with five toilets, three bidets, and seven sinks. Not to mention a cupboard behind the range which housed a faithful rendition of the London Underground in copper. The plumber we called out was amazed, and baffled. We’d only asked him to repair the water heater but, three days later, he was still trying to shut off the hot water. It was impossible. Our predecessor’s design was so resilient, and had so many pipes interconnecting and disappearing into wall cavities, that we could take a minor nuclear strike on a back bathroom and still have a functioning hot water tap somewhere in the house.

We stumbled from one disaster to another – animals, language problems, a ten-foot long caterpillar. Then, in September, came the biggest shock of all. Someone had stolen my identity. Our life savings – all the money from our house sale that was going to finance our new life in France – had disappeared. A bank account had been opened in my name in Spain to take the proceeds.

Now, you might think that that’s about as bad as it could possibly get. You’d be wrong. We were then abandoned by the police forces of four countries who all insisted the crime belonged in someone else's jurisdiction. The French said it was an Irish crime as that’s where the money had been held. The Irish said, no, it was definitely French as that’s where all the correspondence had come from. The British refused to get involved even though forged British passports had been used to open the bank account in Spain. And the Spanish were on holiday – and couldn’t even think about investigating a bank account for at least four weeks.

So I had to solve the crime myself. But unlike fictional detectives I had an 80 year-old mother-in-law and an excitable puppy who insisted they came along if I was going anywhere interesting – like a stakeout. It was the most surreal investigation ever. And surprising. Ever seen a photocopy of your passport with your brother-in-law’s picture on it? *

Being an author, I realized there was a book in this. After all, that which doesn’t kill you, you can write about afterward. But what kind of book should I write?

My first thought was a thriller. I’d use the identity theft plot and give it a twist. When I’d first discovered the identity of my impersonator I’d realized that I had their bank account number. And if they could seize control of my bank account why couldn’t I seize control of theirs? I didn’t. But, for my new book, what might have happened if I had?

Unfortunately the more I wrote my thriller, the funnier it got. It wanted to be a comedy so, I junked the thriller and wrote the memoir. But what would I call it? The first title I had was, Nous Sommes Anglais. That had been our constant fallback whenever our attempts at speaking French confused the person we were talking to. “Er ... nous sommes Anglais,” we’d say (we’re English) and their faces would light up. Aha, that’s why you’ve just asked for 800 kilograms of paté!

But there was a problem with having a title in French – some readers would see the title, Nous Sommes Anglais, and assume the entire book was written in French. So, three weeks before publication, we had to come up with a new title. I chose French Fried as it was short, easy to remember, and could convey the impression that we’d been frazzled by our French experience.

So, here it is. French Fried: one man’s move to France with too many animals and an identity thief. Out now for only $3.99.

* This isn’t a spoiler. My brother-in-law wasn’t involved in the fraud. The use of his picture was just another red herring thrown in by the diabolical Dr. Evil, my identity thief.

About the Author

Chris Dolley is an English author, a pioneer computer game designer and a teenage freedom fighter. That was back in 1974 when Chris was tasked with publicising Plymouth’s Student Rag Week. Some people might have arranged an interview with the local newspaper. Chris invaded the country next door, created the Free Cornish Army and persuaded the UK media that Cornwall had risen up and declared independence. This was later written up in Punch. As he told journalists at the time, ‘it was only a small country and I did give it back.’

In 1981, he created Randomberry Games and wrote Necromancer, one of the first 3D first person perspective D&D computer games. Not to mention writing the most aggressive chess program ever seen and inventing the most dangerous game ever played — the Giant Wrigley’s Spearmint Gum Cliff Top Relay.

He writes SF, fantasy, mystery and humour. His novel, Resonance, was the first book to be chosen from Baen’s electronic slush pile. Baen published his second book, Shift, in 2007.

Thank you so much Chris for being a guest at my blog! French Fried is utterly amazing and I love it so much! You really have to read it.

Chris is kind enough to give away ONE lucky reader an E-Book copy of French Fried! Yeay! To win, be a blog follower and leave an email address in the comment. Giveaway open to everyone and ends on 8/20. Good luck!
 

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