Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Gilmore Girls: A year in the Life.....

Winter has finally decided to show up here in Western New York and that is when I get all my best reading and watching done.  I love when it snows for all of 3.2 seconds and then I retreat indoors with a glass of wine ( Chocolate Lab wine is the shit) or hot cocoa and curl up to binge watch stuff on TV or read.  I used Thanksgiving weekend to get started and the first thing I watched was the Netflix revival of Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life.  I had a mild obsession with the Gilmore Girls back in the day. OK, so maybe I watched every single episode the same as I did with Dawson's Creek and One Tree Hill.   The UP network actually ran a marathon the whole week leading up to the premier on Netflix.  It was awesome! 24 hours of Rory and Lorelei.   I had forgotten just how many actors from that show went on to amazing careers ( Melissa McCarthy, Milo Ventimiglio, and let's not forget Jared Padelicki).

I loved that this revival became a thing.  I watched all the episodes ( 4 @ 90 minutes) and I was just left angry.  By now most people will be aware of the dirty trick played on us with the cliff hanger ending.  I am NOT a happy camper.  I also felt like the fact that Rory was in London the first 5 minutes of an episode then would 3 minutes later be walking into  Luke's Diner was very confusing.  I just felt like it was to much info to take in.  I really wish it had been like an entire season or at least maybe a couple more episodes.

My advice... watch because..hello it's still the freaking Gilmore Girls just don't say I didn't warn you.

What I watched over the extended Xmas weekend....

Hi there... I have been so busy with my job and holiday preparation that I have seriously been slacking on my posts so today's will be kind of all over the place.  My idea of relaxing usually involves a good movie, a good show to binge watch, a good book,  a good glass of wine, or hot cocoa. I did not get to partake in any festive drinking this past weekend because I ended up super sick.  I lived basically on pepto, water, and dry toast but....I did get to watch some pretty good stuff.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them:

Now this trailer is compliments of Warner Bros. UK but it still doesn't fully prepare the viewer for just how visually appealing this film really is.  I may be partial because of my love of all things J.K.Rowling but it surpassed my already high expectations.  The story of Newt  and his adventure to America to free one of his many "fantastic" friends is touching, funny, and full of excitement.  The cast was simply wonderful ( Eddie Redmayne, Colin Farrell, and a small appearance by Johnny Depp). This is a perfect family movie for the season ...or anytime you want to get your magical fix on.

The Secret Life of Pets:

I was super excited to watch this film.  I  was positive that this would be pretty hysterical but ....it fell flat. I mean there were some entertaining scenes (like the rabbit voiced by Kevin Hart) but as a whole it just wasn't all that impressive.  The story is cute but I actually feel asleep while watching it. I would recommend this for a younger audience or a family with little ones for sure.

Honorable Mentions:

Mechanic : Resurrection ( Action, Jason Statham, Jessica Alba, Tommy Lee Jones....need I say more)

Ben-Hur (2016 edition)

Trailer Park Boys:Out of the Park (the boys set loose in Europe...hilarious)

Christmas Traditions that are always watched:

A Christmas Story (24 hour marathon is always on 1 of my TV's)

National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation

How the Grinch Stole Christmas (both versions)


Happy Holiday binge-watching!!!!

Thursday, December 15, 2016

The Lost Healer by Rachel Robins

Genre:  Fantasy
By: Rachel Robins

Overview:  When raiders come to Daelfjord, Frida is taken away from her home and everyone she's ever known, doomed to a life of slavery. Although she belongs to Agnarr, lord of Groenthjal, she can't seem to escape the attention of Daegal, the town's resident magician. Sparks fly as their personalities clash, but it is eventually Daegal who helps her escape from the raiders. The magician has his own plans for Frida's newfound freedom, however, and it isn't for her to return home to Daelfjord. Instead, he is convinced that her very existence was prophecized and that she will be instrumental in battling the evil forces coming from the Borderlands. All Frida wants is to return home, to her comfortable life of healing the sick and wounded, but it seems that fate has other plans for her. Will she eventually get what she wants? Or will she only trade Agnarr's slavery for Daegal's control?

My Thoughts:   This is Book 1 of what could turn out to be a very good series. I love reading fantasy/sci-fi type books that involve magic and healers.  This one even has clans of barbarians. Frida is a young healer who has always longed for adventure and yet knows her place is to heal others using various methods her grandmother taught her. She has been treated as a sort of outcast and just wants to be accepted for who she is....once she figures out who that truly is.

She pretends to be a man when her village is invaded and along the way meets a unique priest who can tell there is much more to Frida than meets the eye.
I really enjoyed this story and would very much like to read more about these characters. The only major issue that I had with this book was that it almost moved too fast and the romance portion of the story could have used more build up.  I would give this 4 stars.

If you are interested you can find it on Amazon for $8.36 plus $3.99 for shipping.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

The Holiday Gift by RaeAnne Thayne

Genre:  Romance


My Thoughts:      

I was not disappointed in the least with this book.  It was full of love and Christmas cheer.  This is part of the Cowboys of Cold Creek series and sadly I have not read most of the others but I will make the time for them.  I love that Faith and Chase have been best friends forever and he has always wished for more.  The story was a fast read but there were also real life scenarios going on that added a realism to it ( blended families, difficult pregnancy, second chance at love). I even laughed a little at how ridiculous Faith was being when she tried hooking Chase up with another woman all so she didn't ruin their friendship. This was a perfect read for this time of year.  Did I mention there is a Christmas ranch? Who doesn't love that!

Thank you to NetGalley for the Advanced Reader Copy.

Friday, December 2, 2016

Mistletoe, Mischief, and the Marquis by Amelia Grey

Mistletoe, Mischief, and the Marquis
by Amelia Grey
Genre: Historical Romance, Holiday Romance


The Marquis of Wythebury, is expecting an ordinary Christmastide at Hurst—until he is set upon by a beautiful miss who takes him to task for not allowing his young nephews to play outside.  In his mind, a five and seven year old needn’t get chilled in the snow; better to plop them in front of the fire with a book. Few people have ever been brave enough to challenge him over anything, much less the rearing of his wards. The cheeky Miss Prim has no such compunction. No matter how fetching he finds her, he can’t give in to his attraction…for she is the sister of his best friend.

Growing up the middle child of five rambunctious girls, Lillian Prim doesn’t understand why two young boys visiting Hurst don’t know how to play until she meets their dashing guardian. The Marquis of Wythebury is commanding and intensely serious-minded. To her surprise, she’s captivated by him. It’s all she can do not to give into her feminine fantasies about him kissing him. Lillian has no intention of falling in love with the Marquis, but she will create Christmastide mischief and teach the boys and the handsome Marquis how to play.  

My Review:

***I received an advanced reader copy of this in exchange for my honest review.***

I have not read the other books in this series but I plan to now.  I love Christmas settings for romances.  It just makes it that much more romantic.  Lillian is exactly what I like in a heroine.  She is beautiful inside and out as well as full of fire and spunk.  The Marquis is devastatingly handsome and, of course he is arrogant.  The chemistry and word play between these two make this quick paced story so much fun to read.  I love the nephews and there excess amounts of energy.  Overall it was just a great book.

I have already recommended it to several friends and will be giving it 5 stars on Goodreads.

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over thirty books Amelia Grey read her first romance when she was thirteen.  She’s been a devoted reader of love stories ever since. 
Amelia has been happily married to her high school sweetheart for over thirty-five years and she lives on the beautiful gulf coast of Northwest Florida.
She is a two-time winner of the prestigious Booksellers Best Award, and she has also won the Aspen Gold, and Golden Quill awards. Writing as Gloria Dale Skinner, she won the coveted Romantic Times Award for Love and Laughter and the Maggie Award.  Amelia’s books have been published in Europe, Indonesia, Turkey, Russia, and Japan.  Several of her books have been featured in Doubleday and Rhapsody Book Clubs.
Mistletoe, Mischief, and the Marquis is a spinoff Christmas novella from her widely acclaimed “Heirs’ Club of Scoundrels” Series.  Coming March of 2017 Amelia starts a new series, The Rakes of St. James with the first book of the trilogy, Last Night with the Duke.
You can email Amelia at AmeliaGrey@comcast.net
Follow her on FaceBook at FaceBook.com/AmeliaGreybooks, or visit her website at AmeliaGrey.com