Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Review: Meet 100 People: A How-To Guide to the Career and Life Edge Everyone's Missing

Meet 100 People: A How-To Guide to the Career and Life Edge Everyone's Missing Meet 100 People: A How-To Guide to the Career and Life Edge Everyone's Missing by Pat Hedley
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

After seeing Pat Hedley speak at a work event, I grabbed the book and it was probably a 50/50 chance that it would join the graveyard of books that I've accumulated throughout my career. Lucky for me, this book was small and engaging and I figured I could just read a chapter a week and make my way through it. I had the extra motivation of having a conference coming up that would be an excellent time to put this to good use.

The book tells a good story, selling the reader on the value of networking and how you should progress through your journey. It was good to see things from the different stories told throughout and I found myself particularly drawn to the actionable items. I'm a sucker for strategic goals, so having something solid I could target and work towards was really tempting. Slowly but surely, I made my way through this 100ish page book. I managed to tab a few pages, pull out a few quotes, and even force some suggestions on my husband (who is now building his own business). If you are looking for something to motivate you to improve your networking skills, I would definitely recommend this book. I'm not sure I will actually meet 100 people, but I will definitely value and nurture my network and prioritize meeting people more than before.

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Friday, June 21, 2019

Review: Artifacts, Dragons, and Other Lethal Magic

Artifacts, Dragons, and Other Lethal Magic Artifacts, Dragons, and Other Lethal Magic by Meghan Ciana Doidge
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I have a love/hate relationship with these Dowser books. I am addicted to knowing what happens next in Jade's world, but, gah, she can be completely infuriating. That being said, I'm never going to quit this series/world.

Jade is on-strike when we join her. Some time has passed since the last book and she and Warner are the making some really great progress as a couple. There's something holding them back, though, and it is the crazy, murderous woman who has some history with him. Since he could, theoretically, be sent back into wherever he went last time, Jade's eager to cut his ties to his responsibility and... sigh... the crazy koala is the only one who knows how to do this.

This was the start of the horribly frustrating, cringe-worthy, descent into madness. I was ready to strangle everyone involved in every decision made to ultimately ended up with a crazy koala loose in the world (again). I can't even sum up all the madness that has to happen to get to the end of this book. So much has to change, but after all the stress to get to the end, I'm pretty satisfied. This one almost broke me and I am eager to take a break with Rochelle now, please. Also, more Drake now!

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Review: Lunar Court

Lunar Court Lunar Court by Aileen Erin
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This world is wonderfully engaging. I am in love with all the characters for different reasons. In this book we get to see behind the scenes with Chris and Cosette.

Along the way (and, really, you should start from the beginning), we have seen little hints and teases about Chris and Cosette. Cosette is a secret powerhouse of sorts. She likes to pretend she has less power than she does, but that's kind of the way of life at her court. Her mother is... a nightmare. We end up learning more about her through this book, but it is essentially all bad. Now that Cosette has to go back there, following the events of the previous book, she's forced to fight for her life on a regular basis, or marry someone she doesn't love.

Chris might have even more secrets than Cosette. We learn just oodles and oodles about his past and all the baggage he has accumulated along the way. With each chapter, I fell more and more in love with him. Cosette is super lucky because Chris's super contained wolf has determined that she is his mate. So, this story ends up following Cosette, her BFF/surrogate father/guard, and Chris while they all try to keep themselves and each other alive.

It should really be easy, because Chris and Cosette love each other. Unfortunately, Cosette lives in the Lunar Court, and if Chris came there he would become a slave to their power. Chris (and some divine intervention) push him towards some shady characters who may or may not be able to sever his lunar tie (freeing him to be with Cosette). It is, of course, never that easy. There's so many twists and turns, but we do eventually get there for these two wonderful folks. I was sad to see this one end because Chris is just the best!

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Review: Darkness Rising

Darkness Rising Darkness Rising by Katie Reus
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I admittedly have been hopping in and out of this series and I'm not sure why. Every time I dive back in, I love these books. There is just the right blend of action, romance, and smutty goodness.

This story follows a newly awakened dragon warrior who, sorry, is named Reaper. The person who ends up discovering him upon waking is Greer, the pack's healer. These two are unlikely on paper, but completely sizzling together. Something about the blunt, predator nature that Reaper has was the perfect temptation for the loner healer. This, coupled with a bit of big bad machinations, makes for a completely engaging and addictive read.

While Greer does her best to fight the attraction, she ends up getting dragged into life with a warrior, complete with battles, politics, and huuuuuuuuuge changes to the world. It was a little shocking how much changed after a sudden attack, and now they are living in a completely different world than they started in. Lucky for these two, there are some wonderful happy years to come.

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Friday, June 14, 2019

Review: Daughter of Kali: Awakening

Daughter of Kali: Awakening Daughter of Kali: Awakening by Shiulie Ghosh
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What an interesting little world we get a look into with this introductory book! There's demons and warriors and all sorts of mythological awesomeness jammed into this story.

Kaz is a typical high schooler. Sure, her mom is a bit of an embarrassment and she's super duper broke all the time, but as a daughter of a single mom, Kaz manages to have a relatively decent life for herself. All of that gets turned on its head when she sees her mom do something impossible. From there, all her "hallucinations" from years growing up start to make sense. She's seeing demons, and they are a little too close for comfort.

Also, what's a good YA read without some love triangle action, right? There's a new boy in school who is everything both Kaz and her BFF could want in a guy, although he's hiding his fair share of secrets, too. Roll all this together and you've got the makings for lots of drama. There's apparently been a secret organization taking kids off the street and training them to defend normal folks from demons. How do we know that? Well, something big is going down and somehow Kaz becomes a key player in this showdown. This book really set this world up nicely and has definitely got me hooked for installment #2!

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Review: Anthony Bourdain Remembered

Anthony Bourdain Remembered Anthony Bourdain Remembered by CNN
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book is not so much a book as a collection of lovely remembrances from people who had their lives touched by Anthony Bourdain. It was nice to see the variety of ways he was able to help people get on the right path, or just inspire them to do more. Personally, it was a good way to get something positive out of the horrible loss of Anthony Bourdain. There is definitely a hole in all his fans where he once was - luckily many are choosing to give meaning to his life in their future actions.

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Saturday, June 8, 2019

Review: Claimed by Magic

Claimed by Magic Claimed by Magic by H.R. Savage
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

OK, I am admittedly late to the game. This is the last book in this series and I am so sad! I will definitely be checking out the previous books now that I'm in love with this prickly band of misfits.

We get a little refresher on how Fallon and Aidan met, at Fallon's brother's mating ceremony. It was a fleeting thing, but left an impression on them both. After that, they went their separate ways, until a vision Aidan receives indicates that she is in mortal danger. Ignoring all warnings to stay out of wolf business, he's drawn to her anyway. Fallon is independent to a fault. She's determined to live her life by her rules, even at the risk of getting herself killed.

Aidan, on the other hand, is so full of himself that he can't see the relationship developing before his eyes. He is also blind to the happenings in his own coven. There's oodles of betrayal, long buried family issues, fighting, sexy times, and pack behavior jammed into this book. The world was wonderful, and, as I said, I'm sad I missed the previous books to watch it evolve. Aidan and Fallon are unlikely allies and even less likely partners, but this book really took you on their adventure.

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