Readin’ Y’all 2K13

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Hello!  Hello.

Once again, I read a whole mess of books this year, and since Books Are My Business, I am sharing with you my faves.  As you may remember, I use a zero-to-two star rating system.  This year I didn’t have that many two stars (which means LOVE), so I might just, like, include the ones that have stuck with me.  Because that is my fave kind of book.  The sticky kind.

Is that what I meant?

Anyway, in no particular order:

What Angels Fear by C. S. Harris.  Sebastian St. Cyr is accused of murder, but he’s all righteous and good and seeks justice for the dead woman!  And there’s love angst with a prostitute and some great secondary characters and I haven’t read any more in this series yet but I will.  Oh, I will.

True to the Law by Jo Goodman.  There’s something about Jo Goodman’s books that just sort of sneak up on you.  I would read a convo between the hero and heroine and I’d have to go back and read it again, it was so perfect.  This is a follow-up to The Last Renegade, but the main thing the two books have in common is the setting and the awesomeness.  Rabbit and Finn were back, causing and solving problems, but read it for Cobb and Tru and their path to realizing how daggun perfect they are for each other.  Now I want to read it again.  Dang.

Uncommon Passion by Anne Calhoun.  Did everyone love this book?  I think everyone loved it.  The heroine was a virgin ex-cult member, but the real transformation came to the alphahole cop.  Love an alphahole transformation.

All of the Lady Julia Grey mysteries by Deanna Raybourn.  For reals, I am too lazy to ever read a whole series (see C. S. Harris above), but I just finished the fifth and, so far, final book in this series this morning and I am SAD ABOUT THAT.  Why are there no more, Deanna Raybourn?  Why are you writing other things besides sharp danger-magnet Julia Grey and her super-hot, super-emo Nicholas Brisbane?  Write them!  PLEASE!

Never Go Back by Lee Child.  I mean, I just love Jack Reacher, even if I have to look away when he breaks someone’s arms.  Which he does, a lot.  As per usual with me and series, I have not read these in order, and so far it has not been a problem.  Because I love Jack Reacher.  There was a smidge of bait-and-switch with a secondary character, but as long as we see her again, I won’t be mad at you, Lee Child.

Honorable mentions:

Feeling Hot by Elle Kennedy.  Because I love military dudes who are not bound by the limits of heteronormativity.  I liked it better than Hotter than Ever, although I was also super into that one.

Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell, although probably don’t bother watching the movie.

Sailor Twain: Or, the Mermaid in the Hudson by Mark Siegel.  Beautiful graphic novel that is realistic and fanciful at the same time.

The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller.  Had everyone read this book but me?  No?  Read it.

Sex and the Single Fireman by Jennifer Bernard.  Hot firemen, and I only accosted the author a little at RT.

On the Island by Tracy Garvis Graves.  Soap opera conceit, but so good and tear-jerk-y.

Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter.  Book Group Gold!  Of course, I am prejudiced toward any book set in Italy.

Conduct Unbecoming by L. A. Witt.  I really felt like I was on Okinawa, and which is impressive considering the huge distraction of watching two Navy dudes fall in love.


This seems like too many Honorable Mentions instead of Faves.  Maybe I need to adjust my rating system.  Three stars?  So there can be middle ground?  Or just read more?

Yes.  Read more.

What did you all read in 2013 that you loved?  Besides my books, of course.  La!

Resolution Absolution

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(I had to break out the rhyming dictionary to make that title work.  I also came up with: Lilliputian Resolution, Resolution Devolution, Resolution Persecution.  Substitution Institution Execution.  Prostitution.  You’re welcome.)

Anyway!  I did not make any New Year’s Resolutions this year, for several reasons.  The first and most prominent being: I am lazy.  But then I started thinking a little more deeply about it (and not at all to fabricate a justification for my laziness), and I realized it’s much more.  Much more.

Not that much more.  But it’s a little more.

First of all, as the person in the cubicle next to you said on January 2nd, I never keep my resolutions so what’s the point.  Which is a ridiculous attitude, by the way: I have failed in the past, so why bother to try?  And, actually, I sort of did keep my resolution last year.

“Sort of” being the operative term.

So, my resolution last year was to use my passport.  I used to travel all the time, all over Europe (well, not all over, maybe just regular over), and last January I was feeling pressure with starting a new job and maybe a little trapped, and I was frustrated with my self-stalled writing, and, you know, travel.  It’s fun.  I used to be adventurous!  Now I’m lucky if I even try a new recipe.  So!  Passport.  Perfect.

And I did it!  I used my passport.  But I did it in such a way that was totally cheating.  See, I did take a big adventure vacation – to Maine.  I don’t know if all y’all know about the United States, but Maine is totally in it.  No passport required.  But!  I had to renew my driver’s license, and I forgot to do it before it expired (oops), so I had to go to the DMV and prove my existence with several thousand gallons of documentation, including…my passport!

I should feel disappointed that I didn’t take a big international trip, but I am too busy being proud of myself for pulling a fast one.  On myself.

There’s something very sad there.  Let’s not get into it.

OK, so this year.  This year, I just wasn’t feelin’ it.  I feel like things are happening, they are good, and I have enough to do to keep on top of the current good things without forcing additional things on myself.  Besides, I’m perfect!

But then I always feel a little guilt about that.  I could stand to lose the ten pounds (no joke) I gained over the holidays.  But, look, that will happen.  (I shan’t mention the fact that my regular Saturday morning zumba class started twenty minutes ago.  And I am still in my pajamas.)  (I also shan’t mention the fact that on the way to the parking garage yesterday, a button popped off my jacket.  Literally.  I was walking along, and it up and popped right the hell off.  That is not good for a girl’s self-esteem, I tell you what.)

I also have what can gently be called a contrary personality.  If I am supposed to be doing something, I like to pretty much always do the opposite.  For example, this morning I am supposed to be at zumba, but instead I am watching Geordie Shore.  But then I always throw in a little something to justify it.  So, today, I’m also blogging, which is something I have been putting off.  And hasn’t it been worth the effort, gentle readers?

The point is, I’m tired of kidding myself with these bananas.  My resolution for 2013 is just to do what I do, man.  Just chill it out.  And blog and work out and write a novel (a contractual obligation I am very grateful for) and maybe periodically shave my legs although probably not.

And then next year I will have something to be contrary about, and I’ll make all kinds of resolutions and be The Woman I Was Always Meant To Be.

OK, enough of this shit.  Here’s a picture of my friends’ kitty, Floofy.  He works out!

He's Floofy and he knows it.Happy New Year, kittens!