Thursday, February 11, 2010

Highly Recommended

by Christine Wells

Now that summer holidays are fast becoming a distant memory, I reflected today that I've been through rather a purple patch recently with reading matter. I thought I'd share some of these with you in case they hadn't come your way.

The Slightest Provocation by Pam Rosenthal

This is a novel I deliberately didn't read when it came out because I was writing a book on a similar subject. I'm so glad it finally found its way to the top of my TBR pile. Coincidentally, The Slightest Provocation is now being released in mass market paperback for the first time with this new cover, so please rush to the bookstore to buy your copy! It's always a comfort to find that a writer I like and admire as a person also writes wonderful books. This is a sexy, beautifully crafted novel, unlike anything I've read, devoid of cliches, yet it was such a satisfying romance, I cheered at the end.

The Mitford Girls by Mary S. Lovell

I became an Anglophile at an early age watching Love in a Cold Climate, the BBC dramatization of Nancy Mitford's witty fictionalization of her own life as one of English peer Lord Redesdale's six daughters. But in the Mitfords' case, reality was far more remarkable than fiction! Nancy wrote widely acclaimed novels and biographies and had a long-standing affair with Charles de Gaulle's right hand man while living in Paris; sister Debo married the man who became the Duke of Devonshire and is partly responsible for turning the grand estate of Chatsworth into the highly profitable business it has become; sister Unity was a fanatical fascist who became an intimate of Hitler and shot herself in the head when war broke out between Germany and Britain.

Another sister, Decca, was a Communist. She ran away to fight the fascists in Spain and eventually worked for the Communist Party in the United States, dodging the CIA. Diana married the head of the British fascist party, Sir Oswald Mosley and spent some of the war in prison because of her politics.

Their bewildered mother said of the Mitford girls that whenever she saw a newspaper headline that began "Peer's Daughter" she knew one of them had been up to something. On another occasion, she despaired that all her daughters must fall in love with dictators. This is a lively, witty biography that is well worth a read.

The C.S. Harris St. Cyr Mysteries

Anna Campbell first recommended this series to me and I heartily endorse her opinion. Nobleman, former soldier and unwilling sleuth, Sebastian St. Cyr is a complex blend of flawed human, aristocrat and superhero. Harris brings Regency London to life in all its seamy and glittering glory in this tightly plotted murder mystery series.

For Regency historical lovers, this series is a must. The romantic threads took a spellbinding twist in the latest instalment, What Remains of Heaven. I cannot wait to see how the characters deal with the tough choices ahead of them!

What books have you read lately that you highly recommend?

104 comments:

mariska said...

:)

Susan Sey said...

Ooooh, Mariska with the GR. I was so close. So very close...

Ah, well, I don't have time to keep track of that feathered menace today anyway. :-)

As for books I've read and loved lately, I've been too busy with Rita books to pick out my own. But my husband keeps stacking them up on my TBR pile when he finishes them, & right now I'm supposed to be starting The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. But I have such a hard time with Danish and/or Scandanavia writers working in English. There's something about the structure of their native language that flows into their English & makes it (to me, anyway) feel very clinical.

My husband says this book is worth getting over that. We'll see...

But I'm totally intrigued by Love in a Cold Climate (I'm sure I just butchered that title, but you know what I mean.)

Thanks for the list!

Gillian Layne said...

I need to read those CS Harris books! I've read Pam's work. She's pretty amazing.

I'm reading Original Sin (Allison Brennan) right now. Oh. My. Gosh. The pacing in this story is amazing. The story is amazing. It's going to aggravate me to no end to wait for the rest of the books.

Gillian Layne said...

Ha! Just read my comment. Amazing must be my word of the day....:)

Kate Carlisle said...

Good morning! Congrats, Mariska. Hope the wily one is good company today. :-)

Christine, I've been wanting to get hooked on the C.S. Harris series. I love historical mystery series and this one sounds so intriguing. Must remember to pick them up.

I stayed up too late last night finishing the latest Kristan Higgins, The Next Best Thing. I'm such a sucker for her books and this one did not disappoint. But now my eyes are so puffy from crying through the last few chapters that I can barely see the computer screen! Yes, that's a recommendation! :-)

I'm about to begin the latest in the Della Cooks mystery series by the lovely Melinda Wells. Looking forward to it!

After that, I'll start on my Rita books. I don't know any of the authors so I'm hoping to find some hidden gems in the stack!

Hank Phillippi Ryan said...

HI all! Just missing you and coming to visit and say hi--hope you are not too snowed in.

Highly recomended? If you like thrillers, I just finished an ARC of Andrew Gross RECKLESS. Wow. I could not put it down.

There's also an amazing mystery I read recently called Awakening. (Susan Sey, you might like it!)

And now, back to the RITA and GOlden Heart entrants! (Very exciting..)

love to you all

Jane said...

I've recently read the debut releases of Lori Brighton and Beverley Kendall which I really enjoyed. They're both historicals.

Trish Milburn (Tricia Mills) said...

I too am in the midst of judging the RITA, so no reading of my own other than a few pages here and there of a book called Living Oprah. I'm just at the beginning, but it's about a woman who decided to dedicate a year of her life to living the advice Oprah gives on her show, Web site and in her magazine to see if it would, in fact, make her life better.

jo robertson said...

Hi, Christine, great topic. I love getting new recommendations,even while I'm desperately trying to whittle down my TBR pile. I've even resorted to skimming (bad JoMama)!

I've been very interested in the St. Cyr series, though, as someone previously recommended them. I've just begun What Angels Fear.

I love Robert Crais and am reading his recent THE FIRST RULE.

Anna Sugden said...

Great post, Christine - though I'm now going to have to add CS Harris to my ever-growing TBR mountain.

I'm way behind on my reading - but some great books I've read recently are:

Allison Brennan's FBI trilogy (Sudden Death, Fatal Secrets and Cutting Edge) - chilling.

Hank Phillipp Ryan's Air Time (loved all the insider info on the fake handbags!)

Mariah Stewart's Mercy Street series - tense and emotional

Kate Angell's Sliding Home (for all you baseball fans - her baseball guys are HOT!)

Lorraine Heath's Scoundrels of St James series - Dodger's story in Bewteen the Devil and Desire is one of my favourite books ever!

JD Robb's Origin in Death - awesome characterisation, dialogue and pacing - and I love Roarke *g*.

Anna Sugden said...

Hey Hank! Great to see you back!

Jo - Robert Crais is one of my faves to meet. Aside from being yummy, he is so charming and nice.

Which reminds me - I also read two fab Thomas Perry's - Vanishing Act and Dance for the Dead.

Hey all - did you know that our very own Kate has hit the NYT again?! WOOOHOOOO! Yes, If Books Could Kill is at #28!

Barbara Monajem said...

Right now I'm reading Mistress of the Art of Death by Ariana Franklin. It's a medieval murder mystery, and like all her novels (either written under the Franklin pseudonym or as Diana Norman) the past is brought to *extremely* vivid life.

I just finished Divorced, Desperate, and Deceived, the third in a series by Christie Craig. I read and enjoyed the other two, but this was the best. One of the secondary characters won my heart, and the ending was incredibly satisfying.

MsHellion said...

I glommed the Princess Diaries in about a week and a half. All 10 of them. I think I read 3 in one day actually (and I work full time--so I spent a Saturday just reading Diary books.) I loved them and recommend them highly.

I have gotten into Tessa Dare's debut trilogy. I've really gotten into her series now and recommend her. I love her writing style a lot; she has a great turn of phrase and lots of funny stuff. Very smart. The heroines are like Lydia Bennet Gone Wild variety. If you like your regency heroines more on the wild side, these are the books for you.

I've also picked up Susan Holloway's mistress books. (I prefer my historical novels to be a bit more, well, historical. So I'm LOVING these. I should have gotten these sooner!)

catslady said...

I was lucky enough to win a copy of The Conqueror by Kris Kennedy and loved it. I'm now looking forward to getting The Irish Warrior. I also enjoyed The Woman in Red by Eileen Goudge.

Louisa Cornell said...

Again, Mariska? You are a glutton for punishment, aren't you? :)

Yes, the St. Cyr series is really fabulous. Love it.

Madeline Hunter's Ravishing in Red is her best novel yet, in my humble opinion. I loved every minute of it. The depth of the characters and the sweep of emotions is simply wonderful.

Sabrina Jeffries The Truth About Lord Stoneville is another lavish love story. I truly enjoyed it. The hero is to die for and the heroine is someone everyone can relate to.

And Christine I have to agree with you about The Slightest Provocation. Pam's novels are so unique and this one has SUCH a great romance. Love her writing!

For a wild ride of intrigue, boom, double crosses and a ruthless hero you can't help but like try Andrew Grant's debut Even. (As in don't get mad, get EVEN.) Think MI5 meets Die Hard.


AND YAY KATE !!!!!!!!!! I am thrilled to pieces for you!

Keira Soleore said...

Christine, I'm a huge fan of the C.S. Harris books!!! Love them all and the characters. Got my husband hooked on to them, too.

My three recommendations for 2010 romances are: Lessons in French by Laura Kinsale, Countess of Scandal by Laurel McKee, and The Golden Season by Connie Brockway.

Mariska, congrats once again.

Keira Soleore said...

And since Louisa brought up MI-5, how could I refrain from commenting on it??

Love, love, love to death BBC's Spooks AKA MI-5, particularly since season seven has Richard Armitage. Season eight is over with in the UK; the US DVDs won't be out until summer of 2011; not sure about the Aus versions.

Keira Soleore said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
p226 said...

Since most of my reading is non-fiction, my recommendation probably won't be of much interest here. However, I really enjoyed "The Next 100 Years, A Forecast for the 21st Century" by George Friedman who is the founder of STRATFOR intelligence.

Donna MacMeans said...

Your blog comes at an excellent time, Christine. I'm doing a booksigning at a B&N and afterwards plan to roam the shelves, stocking up on books to add to the TBR pile - not that the pile is diminishing, but I'm afraid to miss all the new releases!

I've been reading RITA books and some nonfiction - most recently Bloody Business by H. Paul Jeffers. It's an anecdotal history of Scotland Yard and has some interesting nuggets that might make their way into a book.

Loving my RITA books, BTW. It's so good to read in a different genre every once in a while.

Kate Carlisle said...

**Waving to Hank!!** Great to see you in the Lair!

Thank you, Anna! {{blushing}} I'm still on cloud seventeen!!

Keira, I just discovered MI-5. Wow! Love it!!

I'm still getting over Ms. Christine talking about the end of her summer vacation. I know there are some Banditas back east who can't even imagine the concept of summer right now! :-)

Cassondra said...

Christine, that CS Harris mystery series looks like Da Bomb! So does that first one with the hot couple on the cover. I'm all about no cliches in an historical. If it can be fresh in that Regency-ish era, I want to read it.

I just finished Kate's new book, If Books Could Kill and everyone knows I've been raving about it ever since. I just re-read an old one from a basket of books I keep by the sofa actually. Susan Anderson's Getting Lucky.

I'm also reading How to write Science Fiction and Fantasy by Orson Scott Card, which Nancy recommended to me. I'm working on a futuristic series right now and this book is helpful, but not particularly fun to read.

I don't have nearly enough reading time. I'm even behind on some Bandita Books.

Bad. Bad Cassondra. (hangs head)

Karyn Gerrard AKA~Drew said...

Keira, I LOVE Spooks! My husband is hooked as well, of course, I watch for Richard Armitage *snork* Really, it is a fantastic show. Action, intrigue...did I mention Richard Armitage??

I just read 'If He's Sinful' by Hannah Howell and enjoyed far more than I thought I would! And no Highlanders for once! And how pleasantly surprised I was to find out this was really a historical/paranormal, (or it was to me, at least)with the heroine and her 'special gifts'. Lots of villains, action, and Ash, the hero, is wonderful.
I am reading Anna Campbell's 'Untouched' right now.
Don't get me started, or I may start blubbering on my keyboard...

PJ said...

I've read some great books recently. I highly recommend:

IF BOOKS COULD KILL by Kate Carlisle - Congrats on hitting the NYT List, Kate!

RAVISHING IN RED by Madeline Hunter - I agree, Louisa. Her best yet!

THE GOLDEN SEASON by Connie Brockway - Classic Brockway. So very good!

TO TEMPT A SAINT by Kate Moore - Outstanding historical and first book in new series. Thanks, Janga!

Two upcoming March releases that should not be missed:

IN BED WITH THE DUKE by Christina Dodd - Fresh, original and oh-so- good historical!

TOO WICKED TO KISS by Erica Ridley - Fabulous debut Gothic historical from an author to watch!

PJ said...

Passing the tissues to Drew...

Anna's UNTOUCHED is a masterpiece.

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Mariska, enjoy the chook!

Christine, really enjoyed your post. Although I need new books to read like I need a hole in the head. However, having said that, I can't wait to read the new Sebastian St. Cyr. There was a twist in Where Serpents Sleep that made me desperate to find out what happens next. I think she's written Devlin absolutely beautifully - he's a wonderful hero! And I love it when the brain is the sexiest part of a man and it is with him, appealing as the rest of him is!

I've got Pam's book on my TBR pile. And I think the Mitford Girls book sounds fascinating.

I just read an ARC of Caroline Linden's next book, YOU ONLY LOVE ONCE. And it's a beauty! I also read and really enjoyed a book from a couple of years ago that actually won a RITA for best historical. THE BOOK OF TRUE DESIRES. It was like Indiana Jones with lots of romance. Yummy!

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Hank! So glad to see you! We loved having you as a guest - please come back again!

Seriously, I cannot recommend the C.S. Harrises more highly! They've fabulous and while they're definitely mysteries, there's such a strong romance thread that diehard romance readers will be happy too.

Gillian, they're AMAZING!

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Kate, you star, you! Congratulations on the NYT list! Wow, there's this glow from the back of the cave. Either Sven's giving her a massage or her true brilliance is shining out for all to see!

Anna Campbell said...

Ah, Drew, you're such a woman of taste and discrimination! Snort! Hope you're enjoying the green monster - well, in a blubber on the keyboard sort of way!

Anna Campbell said...

Awww, PJ! Wow, now I'm blubbering on my keyboard. Seriously, that was lovely!

jo robertson said...

I know what you mean, Susan. I have the same trouble with Asian native writers. When I taught English I learned in a workshop that it has to do with cultural differences in writing. American English writers could be graphed in a straight line, but Asian writers tend to hide meaning, so if you charted their story, it'd be more circular. Does that make sense? Anyway it's interesting.

jo robertson said...

Hank, I haven't tried any of Andrew Gross' books. Which one to do recommend to start with?

jo robertson said...

LOL, Anna, we ALL love Roarke. Sometimes I think my friends read the series ONLY for Roarke.

jo robertson said...

Definitely, Anna! Is Robert Crais as good looking in real life as on the book cover?

Tawny said...

Great recommendations :-)

I've been reading non-romance lately (gasp, horror, I know *g*)

My daughter and I are gleefully working our way through Rick Riorden's Percy Jackson and The Olympians' series and totally loving them!!!

Helen said...

Congrats Mariska

Christine my TBR pile is massive already LOL but I love getting recomendations.

I have just started reading Laura Kinsale's Lessons In French and loving it and I also discovered Pamela Palmer last year her Feral Warrior series is awesome and I gotta say Jo Davis's The Firefighters Of Station Five series are fantastic books I have just finished Hidden Fire WOW and Jane I loved Lori Brighton's book and I have Beverley's on the TBR pile.
So many books to read never enough time to read LOL

Have Fun
Helen

Christine Wells said...

Hi all! So, so sorry I've been AWOL. I finished this blog at 11pm last night and fell into bed.

Wow, Mariska! Even with the strange timing you still got the bird!

Susan, the Stieg Larsson books seem very popular so maybe you will find this one easier to read than the other Scandanavian writers you've tried.

You can actually see snippets of Love in a Cold Climate on youtube if you're interested. It's worth a look!

Christine Wells said...

Hi Gillian! Thanks for the recommendation. I have listened to Allison speak and I know she's a real powerhouse in romantic suspense. I must try hers.

Christine Wells said...

Gillian, don't worry, many of us do that--I often find I've used the same word three times on a page when I got back to revise a book. It's actually a sign to me that my subconscious mind took over when I wrote it! And that's a really good thing:)

limecello said...

Oooo Christine, great post! :) Thanks for the book recs! As for fabulous books I've read recently... Coming Undone by Lauren Dane (is that recent enough?) Slow Heat by Jill Shalvis. And upcoming book - Leave Me Breathless by HelenKay Dimon.
I've also enjoyed stories by Jess Dee, and India Grey recently... :( But am not getting in as much reading as I'd like. Can't wait for February to be *over!!!*

Heh. In a moment of panic/I don't know what, the other night I bought about 20 new books... hope springs eternal and all, right, with thinking I'll have time to read? (And this was after I bought the "big name" books I've been looking forward to.)

Christine Wells said...

Hi Kate! And another woohooo on hitting the NYT bestseller list!!!! Even higher than last time. We ought to break out the cabana boys and pop some champagne!

I thought Higgins was supposed to be funny? But that is the mark of a great contemp author, I think, to make you laugh and cry throughout the book. SEP can do that for me, too. Thanks for the recommendation!

And you will love St Cyr. Of course, being an historical hero he kills a lot more people than your Brooklyn!

Christine Wells said...

Hi Hank! Thanks so much for coming back to visit and for the recommendations. I was intrigued by Gross when he was touted as writing women well. I must check him out. Lucky you to get an ARC! Have fun with all the judging!

Christine Wells said...

Jane, I love historicals! (Obviously:) I'm looking forward to those.

Christine Wells said...

Hi Trish! Hmm, Living Oprah sounds very interesting. Let me know how you find it.

Christine Wells said...

Jo, thanks for the Robert Crais recommendation. Another one I haven't read. I loved the first few St. Cyr but it's the two most recent ones that I've found so compelling--I think because of the romantic thread, if I must be honest. That arcs over all the mysteries and I'm compelled to read on to find out what happens!

Christine Wells said...

Hi Anna! Thanks for your list. Another vote for Brennan. Sounds like she's writing great books. And of course Hank's Air Time is on my list. Wasn't she a lovely guest the other day?

Christine Wells said...

Anna, Hank's ears must have been burning.LOL

And another huge whoop for Kate!! We've been partying here in the lair.

Janga said...

I think 2010 has begun as a phenomenal reading year. I don't remember another year when I've had so many A reads this early in the year.

Like PJ, I definitely recommend Kate Moore's To Tempt a Saint. In addition to many others already praised, I've also recently read and highly recommend the following, which I don't think have been mentioned yet:

Promise Me Tonight, Sara Lindsey--She's being compared to Julia Quinn, an apt comparison IMO--great family dynamics, lots of gentle humor, and some sizzling scenes.

Winter Garden, Kristin Hannah--This may be KH's best yet. The Russian fairy tales and their connection to reality make the story unique and heartrending. I stayed up till the wee hours finishing it and wept buckets of tears.

This last one won't be available til early April but make a note of it--The Goddess of Fried Okra, Jean Brashear. If you liked Sue Monk Kidd's The Secret Life of Bees, you should check out this extraordinary Southern novel with a group of unforgettable eccentrics and a theme of female empowerment developed with humor and emotional punch.

Christine Wells said...

Hi Barbara! I hadn't heard of Ariana Franklin. I will look for her. Love historical mysteries.

Christie Craig is hilarious, isn't she? I will look for the latest DDD!

PJ said...

Aaack! I can't believe I forgot PROMISE ME TONIGHT! I second Janga's recommendation. I *loved* this book!

Christine Wells said...

Hi Hellion! Interesting about the Princess Diaries. I'm a bit of a sucker for that kind of thing. I keep passing the movie in the DVD store with a wistful glance. Must be my inner princess!

Ah, yes, Tessa's trilogy was a breath of fresh air, wasn't it? She has a very engaging, intelligent style and her heroines certainly know what they want!

Oh and thanks for reminding me about SHS. I love good historical fiction when I'm in the mood. Went on a Philippa Gregory binge recently that cured me for a while but I'll soon gear up for another one. I suppose my quibble with historical fiction is that it often ends badly because it's true. Sigh. Women on the whole did not get their HEAs throughout history.

Christine Wells said...

Hi Catslady. More historicals! Great! Thanks for the recommendations.

Christine Wells said...

Hi Louisa! Yes we're thrilled about Kate, too!

Oh, wonderful to hear about Madeline Hunter's latest. I'm a big fan of hers. Sabrina Jeffries always delivers a great romance, doesn't she? I haven't heard of Even but the MI5 reference intrigues me. Thanks for the tip!

Christine Wells said...

Hi Keira, yes I'm hoping to get my dh hooked on Harris. After my sister-in-law, who now has the first in the series! I have Kinsale's book on my bedside table and will always run to a bookstore for Connie Brockway. She is such a witty writer. Haven't seen the McKee one. Thanks, I'll check it out!

Christine Wells said...

Keira, I'm waiting for Spooks 8 with bated breath!! You KNOW how much I love that series. We have all of them on DVD. Which reminds me I'm due to see Foanna next weekend. We can have an Armitage fest!

Christine Wells said...

Hi P226! Great to see you:)

The Next 100 Years sounds like a fascinating read. I don't know whether I'm brave enough to read it. I hope there were some good outcomes predicted! I'm so tired of all the doom and gloom.

Christine Wells said...

Donna, I must make note of "Bloody Business" although Scotland Yard is post my period. Sometimes you can extrapolate.

Yes I had an interesting variety of RITA books, too. Glad you're loving yours.

Christine Wells said...

Kate, isn't MI5 the best? I think its strength is that agents really do get killed so you always feel like the danger is real when they go into a situation.

Hugs to all our shivering Banditas and buddies over there!

And I can't say it often enough. I'm so excited about the NYT spot!

Christine Wells said...

Cassondra, I think it's really hard to write fresh Regency historicals but authors keep doing it, and it's wonderful to see. The body count is quite high in the St. Cyr mysteries, I must say--most of them down to St Cyr, actually! There wasn't quite so much accountability then. Looking forward to getting my hands on Kate's lates NYT BESTSELLER!! Sorry, I just had to mention that once again:) Thanks for the other recommendations.

I didn't know you were writing futuristic. Awesome! Let us know how it goes.

Christine Wells said...

Karyn, you had me at Richard Armitage:) I thoroughly recommend all 7 seasons of this show, though, not just the RA ones!

Interesting. I've never tried a Hannah Howell. Haven't gotten into the Highlander thing but I'll make a note of that one.

Oh, and Untouched is such a wonderful romance isn't it? Matthew has a very special place in my heart. He's such a noble, self-sacrificing hero.

Christine Wells said...

PJ, I'm taking down those names you've mentioned because I think your taste often coincides with mine, judging from your reviews!

Yes, Anna outdoes herself time and again, doesn't she? I still remember many scenes from UNTOUCHED very vividly, which is saying something when I read and forget so very many books!

Christine Wells said...

Hi Fo! I'm bringing The Mitford Girls and the latest St. Cyr with me to your house so I'll soon be adding to your tottering TBR pile! Thanks for the recommendations--I always enjoy books you love. LOVE the sound of Indiana Jones with a lot of romance thrown in! That was the one element missing from the movies, I thought.

~Drew said...

Christine,
I adore Highlanders, but Hannah Howell, well, that is all she did for years, so this book (If He's Sinful)was like a fresh breath of air, no Highlanders!
And I agree, am not finished the book yet, but Matthew is just so wretched and tortured, but noble as you said. I could just weep. Anna does it again.

And oh...yes...Richard Armitage.
Nuff' said.

Christine Wells said...

Jo, fascinating about the differences in writing styles between cultures. A Dutch woman told me that having read English, Australian and American fiction she can no longer read Dutch fiction because the Dutch seem to need to spell out absolutely everything, leaving no gaps for the reader to fill and it is (she feels) a poorer reading experience.

Christine Wells said...

Count me in as another one who loves Roarke!

Karyn Gerrard AKA~Drew said...

Whoops, should have been this user name, oh well! LOL!

Christine Wells said...

Hi Tawny! Percy Jackson and the Olympians sounds intriguing! I'll have to look them up.

Christine Wells said...

Helen, I'm looking forward to the new Kinsale, too. Jo Davis is a real favourite here in the lair. I'm so glad you're enjoying her books! Thanks for your recommendations. I know you read a lot so it's great to get your take.

Christine Wells said...

Hi Lime! Thanks for the recommendations! Yes, what is it with us that we keep buying books even though we have a tottering TBR pile at home? I must admit, I don't read books in the order I buy them. I read what appeals to me right now. I get to the romance bookstore in town so seldom that I buy a slew when I'm there. However, Foanna put me on to the Book Depository in the UK and now there's no stopping me!

Kate Carlisle said...

Thanks, PJ!

And that reminds me, I'll be visiting The Romance Dish tomorrow! Hope everyone can stop by!

Madame, Kristan Higgins makes me laugh, too. She's a wonderful writer. :-)

LOL, Anna! Yes, that glow is from Sven's pummeling. It hurts so good. ;-)

It must be time to break out the champagne, Madame!!

Christine Wells said...

Janga, thanks so much for reminding me; I must grab a copy of Promise Me Tonight. It sounds wonderful! Hey, I love those recommendations. These sound like exactly the sort of things I feel like reading now. Thanks, Janga!

Christine Wells said...

PJ, I expect to love this book, too. Isn't the cover sumptuous, btw. They did such a fantastic job.

Anna Campbell said...

Wow, thanks, guys! I'm blushing here. So glad Matthew has his admirers. Apart from Grace. And, uh, Wolfram!

Keira Soleore said...

Christine, Karyn, and Kate:
Spooks is fantastic!! The characterization and dialogue are tight and detailed. I especially love the quick comedic throwaway lines. My only quibble there is that Richard Armitage needs to get better with his diction. He mumbles, but I can forgive him anything. I mean, he IS Richard Armitage. I've caught myself getting so lost looking at him, that I miss stuff and have to rewind.

Christine, you and Fo are having an Armitage Fest? SOOOOO JEALOUS!!! I wanna come (whether I'm invited or not). I wanna!!! (wail)

Christine Wells said...

LOL, Drew! 'Nuff said, indeed!

As for HH doing all the Highlanders, I suppose writers keep giving readers what they want. You will probably find a lot of her fans were disappointed this one *wasn't* a Highlander. *G*

The trouble with RA is that he's even more lovable in person than he is on the screen. Sigh.

Christine Wells said...

Oh, Kate, definitely champagne time! How about some of this lovely Veuve Clicquot sparkling Rose? It's divine! Hic!!

Too early? It's never too early for champagne! Well, I suppose 7.25am is a little early...what the heck, it's for Kate!

Keira Soleore said...

Christine wrote, "The trouble with RA is that he's even more lovable in person than he is on the screen. Sigh."

My eyes popped out of my head when I read that. One question: WHERE?

Christine Wells said...

Keira, hop on a plane and you can be with us for the fest!

Actually, we will probably be too busy nattering to watch television, to be honest!

Karyn Gerrard AKA~Drew said...

Keira said: My eyes popped out of my head when I read that. One question: WHERE?

I second that emotion!! WHERE!! Spill!!
And he can mumble, stutter, read me the phone book, as long as I can hear the delectable deep tones of that velvet voice...*slap* Sorry...

gigi said...

I need recommendations for some new reads.
I went to order The Slightest Provocation and found it won't be out until May. I think that is what it said.

I have just recently read Easy on The Eyes by Jane Porter. I loved it so much I had to get Odd MOM Out and The Frog Prince (bn.com had them on sale, yippee). I had already read Mrs. Perfect another great story by Jane.

I am going on a trip for a week in a couple of weeks and I need suggestions for books to order. So, I will be looking all over the blog for suggestions. I will be holed up in the hotel while the DH does his thing for his job.

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

I have read To Tame a Dangerous Lord by Nicole Jordan and I loved it. I have also read an old book by Victoria Alexander titled The Cat's Meow. I really enjoyed both.

Christine Wells said...

Oh, dear! Hope you didn't think I meant I'd actually met RA!! I think I'd have died and gone to Heaven so I wouldn't be here to talk about it:)

No, just interviews he's done. There's a lovely one which you can probably find on Youtube where he talks about doing North and South and he's just so unassuming and intelligent. There was also a great interview on a blog where he talks about writing and that was fascinating also. I don't remember the blog--it was doing the rounds a while back but you might find it if you search.

Yeah, I really don't mind if he mutters in Spooks. It means there's more to pick up the seventh time I watch it!

Christine Wells said...

Hi Gigi! Sorry about The Slightest Provocation---you can still get the trade paperback if you can't wait until May. I had the impression the MMP was out sooner than that. So sorry to mislead you, but please do order it. It will be worth the wait!

Oh, yes, Jane Porter is such a great writer and a big favourite here in the lair. If you're interested in reading her blogs with us, you can use the search function to find them.

Christine Wells said...

Ooh, more great historicals to read! Thanks Dianna! I haven't tried Nicole Jordan before and I keep meaning to do so.

Christine Wells said...

Found the RA interview, if anyone's interested!

http://tinyurl.com/yccvwxy

Karyn Gerrard AKA~Drew said...

Thanks for that link Christine, I died and went to RA heaven, watching every clip right now, LOL!

Here is one actor I would LOVE to see on the cover of a romance novel...

And Anna C, forgot to mention, Yes, enjoying 'Untouched' very much, I love it when a book engages my emotions like that, makes it truly unforgettable.

Anna Campbell said...

Ah, loving the Richard Armitage discusssion. Sigh. Although Christine, I have to tell you, when you indicated you were going to meet him, I was plotting mayhem! Glad you cleared that up. Unless you intended to take me with! Drew, thanks again for the props for Untouched!

PinkPeony said...

Hola Christine!

I read usually read a few books at the same time. Just finished reading:

The Help - Kathryn Stockett

If Books Could Kill - Kate...it was fantastic..can't wait til the next one comes out.

Going Down Hard - Tawny (there's something about a man in a Stetson)

The First Five Pages - Noah Lukeman (I don't know what he looks like but for some inane reason, I picture him as a professorial-looking Colin Firth)

Currently reading... The Seduction of A Duke...Sex, Lies and Money (divorce attorney tells all and boy, you can't make up some of this stuff!)...and My Life in France.
A bientot!

Nancy said...

Wow, Christine, you're rocking and rolling today! I'm incredibly late to the party.

I'm glad you're finally reading St. Cyr. I love them. Because, again, of Anna Campbell.

What do I recommend? Well, besides the people I've recommended by hosting them here, I always, perpetually and emphatically recommend the Lois McMaster Bujold Vorkosigan books. Miles is the perfect example of a hero who triumphs against overwhelming odds. Even if he isn't always lovable, I always root for him.

Street Magic, the dark paranormal I recently finished was quite good--a Scotland Yard detective inspector and the junkie mage friend she thought was dead fight creeping evil in modern London. Very dark, though.

Laura Anne Gilman's Retrievers series from Luna is urban fantasy, a bit on the dark side as the series progresses but not so much at first.

Lori Handeland's "Doomsday" paranormals are very good, also very dark.

Dune by Frank Herbert, a classic I'll probably be teaching again in the Fall.

Nancy said...

Mariska, congrats on the roostr!

Nancy said...

And yay, Kate! Also rockin' and rollin', Ms. #28 on the Times list!

Nancy said...

Oh-and Sixpence House by Paul Collins, a dryly funny memoir by a writer who moved his family from San Francisco to Hay-on-Wye, aka Book Mecca of the Known Universe.

And my alltime ever favorite book, To Kill A Mockingbird.

Nancy said...

Cassondra, I am behind on Bandita and all other books. I'll hang my head with yours.

Christine Wells said...

Karyn, glad you liked the clip? Isn't he sighworthy?

Haha, Foanna, I would never just casually drop a meeting with RA into a conversation! You know me better than that:)

Christine Wells said...

Jen, what a great reading list! So many banditas--I'm sure you're in for a lot of treats! I'm going to look up "The Help"--I find that intriguing!

Danielle Ferries said...

Christine, I read The Mitford Girls a few years back and was fascinated by the entire family. I've sought out books by them or about them ever since.

I've just recently finished Wicked Little Game, which I loved, and I'm currently reading Bloodroot by Amy Greene.

Christine Wells said...

Great recommendations, Nancy! I haven't read any of those so I must take note! I have heard wonderful things about Dune.

Christine Wells said...

Love the sound of Sixpence House, Nancy! Thanks for that. Totally agree about TKAM.

Christine Wells said...

Hi Danielle!! Wonderful to hear that you were so taken with the Mitford Girls. Aren't they a fascinating family? I think so much of their outrageous behaviour stemmed from being so intelligent and left with no outlet for their cleverness. Their father wouldn't let them go to school.

So glad you enjoyed Wicked Little Game! You've made my day:)

Anna Campbell said...

Jen, is that the Julia Child My Life in France? Vanessa who sometimes posts here lends it to me - luscious descriptions of food. I still dream about the first lunch she had when she hit France just after the war - delicieux!

mariska said...

Since i only get Books or New release books from various contest on several blogs . so i will take note for all the titles (list them on my small note book) :)

Christine Wells said...

Anna, I'd never heard of Julia Child before the movie came out. That book sounds like something best avoided if one is on a diet!

Christine Wells said...

Mariska, good luck!

Pam P said...

Another big fan of the Sebastian St. Cyr mysteries, and the ending of the latest book will surely make you impatient for the next one.

I also recommend Madeline Hunter's Ravishing in Red, great start to her new series.