A Cold Creek Reunion - RaeAnne Thayne

GENRE:  Adult Fiction - Romance
FORM: eBook - Netgalley

SYNOSPSIS (from Goodreads):   
He was the one you called when you needed rescuing…

But who was Taft Bowman going to call when he needed help? Because ten years ago Laura Pendleton, the love of his life, had left town without a word, then or since. Now she was back, with a new last name, and two adorable, high-needs little ones in tow. Well, Taft had been stupid enough to let her go once before…he wasn't about to make the same mistake again. He'd never stopped loving her, and one look at those adorable little faces and he knew that he was meant to be with Laura and her kids forever. All he had to do was convince her that this time he was a man she could count on!

REVIEW:  So I’ve decided you might as well add “Small town life,” and “ranch cowboys” to my list of books I apparently gravitate towards. When I look at the scope of books I like to read, it gets broader every day. I mean, one day I’m reading about ships and pirates, another day I’m in the London Ton, the next I’m chasing down vampires, and then I’ll finish it off riding a horse. Such is the way of a book lover!

A Cold Creek Reunion
has actually been sitting in my iPhone for a while. It’s a book I got from NetGalley, and while I try my best to be pretty time sensitive when I get a book from them, this particular one has continued to be pushed back to another time. I mean, it’s a Romance, so it’s a winner from the start, however the story line has been done (which obviously doesn’t bother me, since I DID request the book – right?), but I think I have to be in the moment that I feel like reading that particular kind of book. It doesn’t always happen that way, but apparently this one was one of those kinds of books.

And I must really have been in the mood, because I read two books back-to-back with extremely similar plots. Small town life, runaway bride returns home, old flame flares. It’s obviously a very frequently done plot, in all of its varieties. Like I said, I choose this (these) books, so I’m not knocking the over done plot here – but I’m pretty sure I’ve read 3 or 4 more that have the same basic outline. Thankfully, author creativity makes them not precisely the same book. Anyhow, reading two of these books back-to-back has helped me to really appreciate the value of a good writer. I am not going to name the other book I read, because…well, just because; but let’s just say that the other book was “less than” A Cold Creek Reunion, as far as stories go. While reading the other book I thought, this is a nice story. I’m enjoying it. Of course I love the way the story plays out, the idea around a rekindled romance. But it was just okay. Reading A Cold Creek Reunion in comparison was almost like night and day. I really got to know and enjoy the characters. I loved the town and the people in it. I could envision the story playing out in my head, it became much more than just words on a page. There was life and meaning in there.

Now, if I could tell you what the differences are as far as writing technique, details, etc., I would. I wish I could tell you why one book was just okay and the other evoked such a response that in the end I actually had tears of happiness. Maybe I was just having a sappy day? Or maybe with A Cold Creek Reunion, I had more time to really focus on the story where as the other book I was constantly being interrupted by one or three kids. Those are very distinct possibilities, but I truly believe there is a reason behind why one captured my attention so greatly and the other just merely entertained.

PRODUCT REVIEW: Quaker Oatmeal Squares

*  This is a new thing on this blog..don't be alarmed, you have come to the correct place.  I'm going to attempt to keep up with ONE blog instead of multiple. So expect updates that aren't JUST book related, but that are also about family and various other things.  


Another opportunity to try another great brand, and another great product. I am so thankful I found BzzAgent, because I love trying new things, and who wouldn’t love the benefits of free, or deeply discounted? I totally recommend signing up to be a BzzAgent if you like to share your opinion, blog, talk, or just try new products. It’s so worth it ( and completely legit, as I’ve seen a few discussions asking this very question…)

This time around I got to try Quaker Oatmeal Squares cereal. Cereal is like breakfast, lunch, dinner or snack at our house. We love our cereal (or breakfast foods in general, honestly.) I feel like every time I take on a campaign something major is happening in our live. Last time it was my son’s birthday, which worked out perfect, because I got to experiment on all of the party guests! This time, however, all the drama didn’t work quite as well. Well, I guess it’s a matter of perspective. We just bought a new house, and when my package arrived, we were in the midst of packing, moving, unpacking…I forgot to add painting and ripping up carpet. Yeah. Fun, right? Well, I kind of tried to hide away the cereal so I would have time to do a truly good review. I knew the cereal was going to be great, I love almost everything Quaker puts out anyway. I even got ….two bowls(?) of it myself…but I had every intention of handing out the sample boxes to a couple friends or family and getting their opinion. That was before my kids discovered we had new cereal in the house. And it wasn’t just new cereal, but it was in mini boxes!!!! Nothing could possibly be more exciting. Plus it is quick and easy to put together a bowl of cereal, or just open a mini box and let them eat it as a dry snack. So this time around, the kids are the guinea pigs. After tallying the results…..

~ Direct quote from 7 year old, Azalyah
“Mommy, this new cereal is yummy. I think it’s now my favorite.” ~ Direct quote from 5 year old, Abigail.
“______.” ~ This would be 8 year old, Elijah, who generally doesn’t have much to say about anything.

So yes, I do believe we have found a new favorite to add to the circulation. Oh, I forgot to mention, Azalyah was very thrilled when she saw a commercial and found out that the cereal was actually healthy too. (Mom likes this…so glad to kick the Lucky Charms to the curb……okay maybe not, even I like the sweet stuff now and then!) Healthy is a triple bonus, because, as all moms know, sometimes it’s hard to get anything of value past the lips of our children. Not sure how this happens, but I think that children are just the best manipulators. They know if they hold out, somehow, some way they are going to get something “better” (less healthy) to eat.

So once again, thank you Bzz, for the wonderful opportunity, and thank you Quaker; for once again creating a breakfast that pleases all (or most – who knows about Elijah.)


Infamous - Sherrilyn Kenyon

GENRE:  Young Adult, Paranormal, Romance
FORM: Audiobook

SERIES: Chronicles of Nick

SYNOPSIS (from Goodreads.com):  
The world has fallen in love with Nick Gautier and the Dark-Hunters. Now Nick’s saga continues in the next eagerly anticipated volume...

Go to school. Get good grades. Stay out of trouble. That’s the mandate for most kids. But Nick Gautier isn’t the average teenager. He’s a boy with a destiny not even he fully understands. And his first mandate is to stay alive while everyone, even his own father, tries to kill him.

He’s learned to annihilate zombies and raise the dead, divination and clairvoyance, so why is learning to drive such a difficulty? But that isn’t the primary skill he has to master. Survival is.

And in order to survive, his next lesson makes all the others pale in comparison. He is on the brink of becoming either the greatest hero mankind has ever known.

Or he’ll be the one who ends the world. With enemies new and old gathering forces, he will have to call on every part of himself to fight or he’ll lose everyone he cares about.

Even himself.
REVIEW:  Infamous is the continuation of Nick’s story, and I have been enjoying this series since it came out a few years ago. I have a love for sarcasm, and that is one thing you can rest assured that you will get whenever reading Sherrilyn Kenyon, but Nick’s version is extremely teenage and wonderful! I like this book because, unlike reading her other books – while the characters continue to appear and reappear in the books, the “main cast” for each story changes almost every time; but in the case of The Chronicles of Nick you get the same basic cast. Yeah, a few are added and taken away here and there, but the people you know and enjoy stick around a bit longer.

At first I was a little bit surprised at the length of the book (short…), but I have a tendency to forget that it’s a Young Adult novel, which makes the length even more appropriate. And then I listened to it….and found that the book contained many teenage angst monologues and pep talks and feel good verbiage. Was I missing this before?? I don’t know, but I felt like it was lathered on rather thick this round. At one point the book even sounded as if it was doing the, “here’s the good feeling wrap up for the end of the book” thing that books sometimes do…when they aren’t going to end in a dramatic cliffhanger, and when I looked at my iPhone, I realized there was still almost 2 hours left in the audiobook. Whoops!

I am anxious to find out what is going to happen with Nick. The will he or won’t he turn big, bad, and evil?? What I love about this though, is no matter the ending (and I have an idea of how I think it’s going to turn out), Nick has so many layers, which is explained in Infamous, that even though Nick may “change his story,” all of Sherrilyn’s other books still stand and are an accurate account of that version of Nick. I love complicated layers in books, especially series like this one, it makes them much more interesting!

So yes, I found the book a little bit slow at times, however that does not take away from my general love of this series. I love the characters, I love the action, I love the pace of Nick and Cody’s relationship. I’m looking forward to more….