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Thursday, February 28

Confess Your Blogger Sins!




Question of the week: Confess your blogger sins! Is there anything as a newbie blogger that you've done, that as you gained more experience you were like -- oops?

I Want to Taste the Greatest Cup of Coffee

I'm not a morning person and I can't function properly without two cups of coffee. Caffeine can make some people become jittery or nervous, but for some strange reason it relaxes me, especially at night when I'm busy blogging, writing an article, or working on a short story. My favorite is Nescafe Clasico Dark Roast instant coffee, which I can go through a 7 oz. container a week.

This week has been busy and stressful as I'm catching up with books reviews and some freelance writing. In less than a week, there have been two snow storms with a total of over twelve inches. Of course, I had forgotten to buy more coffee and the stores were out of Nescafe, therefore I had to settle for Folgers Classic Roast instant coffee. Let's just say that Folgers instant coffee tastes exactly like any cheap instant coffee brand. In other words, it taste like dishwater.

I do own a coffee maker, actually I received it as a Christmas gift a few months ago, but I don't care for the coffee it makes. I don't know if it is the coffee maker or the coffee grounds I bought. I've checked out other machines in the stores and online, but I don't know which one makes the greatest cup of coffee.

Wednesday, February 27

Reboot My Bedroom

Since my early Spring Cleaning has been put on hold because of my flu and cold combination, I started daydreaming about what my perfect bedroom would look like. I'm tired of my cluttered mess consisting of piled up books on the desk and on the floor, the outdated television set that covers three-fourths of the top of my dresser, the piles of clean clothes on the floor and the scattered DVDS (a few horror movies, fitness workouts, and the Twilight Zone Definitive Collection). And of course I need to mention the treadmill in the corner that now serves as a coat hanger.

The first that I would want change would be the bed, because it is too hard for me, even with the foam cushioning I added underneath the fitted sheet. Maybe I should buy a new bed from Mattress Online such as the Athena Leather TV Bed. This would be my dream bed as it has a 26" LG TV that pops out of the footrest by just a touch of a button. There is also an under the bed department where I can store a DVD player, Blu-ray player, game consoles, cable box, or store my DVDs. I would also want matching beside nightstand with lamps on each side of the bed. I could store a few of books in the drawers and use the lamps for my nightly reading.

Review - Fatal Circle

Fatal Circle 
By: Linda Robertson
Publisher: Pocket Books
Pub. Date: June 29, 2010
ISBN: 978-1439156803
ASIN: B003L7877M
Pages: 368

Review:

My favorite new protagonist Persephone Alcmedi is back for her third round of mystery and paranormal suspense in Fatal Circle, which finds Persephone continuing to take care of her grandmother and her foster daughter, Beverly. She is just like another person. She pays the bills by writing a syndicated newspaper column, reading the Tarot cards for a variety of people, and she makes a little extra cash by kenneling werewolves in her basement. But her life is now in chaos as she has just killed a fairy on live television, which occurred at the end of Hallowed Circle. With the help of  her werewolf lover, Johnny, and the vampire Menessos, she is able to prevent an all-out fairy invasion, but she is still not safe.

In order to protect her family, she agrees to go into hiding at Menessos's place as his new Master's Witch. Of course Menessos wants something in return. He wants the magical bond between him and the fairies to be broken and only Persephone can make that happen since she is the Lustrata.

MAJOR MOTION PICTURE DOUBLE FEATURES, NEW TV SITCOM SEASONS AND EPIC MINSERIES ON BLU-RAY AND DVD

Blu-Ray Feature Films and TV on DVD Available on March 12 from Mill Creek Entertainment


Minneapolis, MN (February 26, 2013) This March, an impressive assortment of Blu-rays and DVDs will be released from Mill Creek Entertainment. Happy Birthday to Me/When a Stranger Calls and Hollywood Homicide/Hudson Hawk are just two of the six highly anticipated new Blu-ray double features.  Each Blu-ray release contains star-filled, critically acclaimed movies across all genres that will please all movie lovers.  Also included in this Blu-ray release schedule are two new installments of the top selling National Parks Exploration Series, Glacier National Park and Voyageurs National Park, that takes viewers on a breathtaking adventure in stunning high definition.



Flashback to a groovy time with the final two seasons of That 70s Show, Season 7 and Season 8 and laugh with the original desperate housewife, Roseanne, in the hysterical 7th and 8th seasons. Three epic TV mini-series, 10th Kingdom with its all-star cast, and the award-winning South Pacific and Gypsy will take audiences on three different magical adventures. And last but not least, Red Skeleton- The Farewell Specials will keep fans in stitches with his infamous, zany and hilarious performances.



Mill Creek Entertainment, a recognized leader in value entertainment will release this incredible assortment of DVDs on March 12.  Prices for all of these amazing collections start at only $9.98 SRP.


Tuesday, February 26

Barbara Morgenroth Guest Blogging About Bad Apple



I always knew serious writing was in my future, once I had all my adventures out of the way. After being a photography major in college, I had a stable and was teaching horseback riding when the owner decided he wanted to use the property for something else. Suddenly, my timeline was massively compressed. What I thought I would do later in life, became what I would do right then.

I started in Young Adult books, one was made into a television movie and that got me thinking a bit of changing my life around again. I wrote another book and that got me into television which is very exciting and somewhat over-stimulating!

I was doing some non-fiction when the experiences that made up Bad Apple began. Life is full of surprises, twists and turns. You make plans and life has other ideas for you.

Bad Apple had two sources of inspiration. One was that I have a neighbor who presses apples into apple cider.

Review - Firefly Island


Firefly Island
By Lisa Wingate
Publisher: Bethany House Publishers
Pub. Date: February 1, 2013
ISBN: 978-0764208232
ASIN: B00AHY0RMK
Pages: 384
Buy Link: http://ow.ly/hVNrv
Blog Tour: http://litfusegroup.com/author/lwingate 

Review:

Mallory Hale came from a wealthy family and pretty much had everything great happening in her life. She works on Capital Hill as a legislative assistant for a senior congressman. Out of nowhere, Daniel Webster Everson bumps into her as she is trying to grab the Clean Energy Bill papers that fell out of her grasp. Sparks fly instantly between the two. Before she knows it, she is now married to Daniel and she is now a step-mother to his three-year-old son, Nick.

Soon after the marriage, Mallory and her new family packed up their belongings and left our nation's capital for the small town of Moses Lake, Texas. Her lifestyle has completely changed as she now lives in a seen-better-days ranch full of rodents and other creepy crawlers. Mallory plans on making the ranch a home for her new husband and step-son as she adjusts to living in a small community that is full of secrets.

Monday, February 25

Monday Morning Madness #7: Snowbound


I think the fat cat Garfield said it correctly,” I hate Mondays!" That is exactly what I thought as I dragged myself out of bed this morning. Typically, a fresh cup of coffee would perk me right up, but not today as I'm recovering from a combination of the flu and a cold. Due to last week's ten inches of snow, I didn't step out of the house until yesterday when I went to Dollar General to get cold medicine and vapor rub.

Of course being sick means I didn't get much writing done. Luckily, I had several posts already scheduled, so I had nothing to worry about. I did have time to finally crack open and start reading India Fan by the late Victoria Holt (otherwise known as Eleanor Alice Burford Hibbert). I really need to start reading faster as I received two new books in the mail to review. They are Swept Away by Mary Connealy and Unrivaled by Siri Mitchell.

I spent the majority of the weekend watching the fourth season of Gilmore Girls on DVD, when I should have been going through my unwanted DVDs and books, so I can uncluttered my living room. Being sick was another excuse not to get things done. I’m considering putting the movies and books on either eBay or musicMagpie.com, so I can at least make a few extra bucks.

The Marine 3: Homefront Blu-Ray Giveaway

The Miz Takes On The Big Screen

Enter To Win The Marine: Homefront on Blu-ray March 5! 


Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment and WWE Studios unveil a brand new chapter in one of the most action-packed film franchises of all time with The Marine 3: Homefront. The third installment starring WWE Superstar, Mike 'The Miz' Mizanin and rising star Ashley Bell (The Last Exorcism Part II), throws down on Blu-ray and DVD on March 5.

WWE superstar Mike 'The Miz' Mizanin delivers a knock-out performance in the most explosive, action-packed Marine adventure yet. After returning to his hometown on leave, Sgt. Jake Carter learns that his sister has been abducted by a band of violent extremists. To save her, Carter launches a daring one-man assault on their base of operations only to discover the group's ruthless leader is plotting a deadly terrorist strike. With time running out, Carter realizes he's the only man who can stop the impending massacre − but this American hero may have to make the ultimate sacrifice to save thousands of innocent lives.

A must-have for fans of war films, action movies and the WWE, The Marine 3: Homefront is a thrilling drama of explosive proportions.

The Marine 3: Homefront special features include: 

  • Shipwrecked: Breaking Down the Boat 
  • The Miz Rocks the Boat 
  • The Miz Declassified 
  • Casting Call: Ready to Enlist 
  • Miz Journal 

Review: Neferet's Curse: A House of Night Novella

Neferet's Curse
A House of Night Novella
By: P. C. Cast and Kristin Cast
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Pub. Date: February 19, 2013
ISBN: 978-1250000255
ASIN: B008BU74K0
Pages: 160

Review:

The third A House of Night novella focuses on Neferet's past life in the year 1893 before she was Marked. She was born as Emily Wheiler and at the age on sixteen-years-old she became the Lady of Wheiler House after her mother passed away. She doesn't have much time to mourn as her father, a powerful bank president, demands that she take over late mother's responsibilities, such as planning parties, approving of the dinner menus, being a good hostess and running the household.

She accepts herself as her mother's replacements and hopes that she would become closer to her somewhat estranged father, but she soon realizes that any type of relationship with her father would never happen. At times Emily attempts to hang out with her childhood friends, but her father objects to childish ways. He won't even let her ride her bicycle, which he demands to have remove from the property.

Unexpectedly, she falls in love with a young man that she meets at one of her father's parties, but her father once again objects to her having any type of a life, he even becomes violent. Situations occur that leads her to becoming Marked by a vampyre. She leaves the Wheiler House and is brought to the Chicago House of Night where her destiny as Neferet begins.

Sunday, February 24

DVD Review - Street Sharks: The Complete Series

Street Sharks: The Complete Series
Voices: Terry Berner, Pam Carter, Matt Hill, Jim Hoggatt, J. Michael Lee, Andrew Rannells, Lee Tockar, D. Kevin Williams, Tony Wike
Studio: Mills Creek Entertainment
Release Date: February 19, 2013
ASIN: B00AQ590IC
Retail: $12.98
Running Time: 14 hours 47 minutes
Rated: TV-Y7

Review: 

Animation series conquered the television screens during the 1980s until the mid 1990s. Growing up during that time period, I watched dozens of cartoon series, but by the mid 1990s I was out of my cartoon stage and became interested in other stuff. Now as an adult, I have taken an interest in revisiting the cartoons that I grew up with and others that I never got a chance to watch. One those series was Street Sharks that aired from 1994-1996. The complete series has recently been released to DVD for the first time from Mill Creek Entertainment, who sent me a complementary copy in exchange for my honest review.

Street Sharks was based on the Mattel toy-line of the same name. The main plot involved Dr. Paradigm experimenting on gene-manipulation. His assistant, Dr. Robert Bolton, tried to destroy his research, but ended up being mutated before escaping the lab. Bolton's sons, John, Bobby, Coop, and Clint, investigated his disappearance, but were kidnapped by Dr. Paradigm, who turned them into sharks.

The rest of the series focused on the brothers', now known as Ripster, Jab, Streex, and Big Slammu, attempts at capturing Dr. Paradigm, so he could return them back to their human form. Each episode has Dr. Paradigm turning people into mutants and the brothers must stop them.

The 40 episodes on the two disc set are:

Saturday, February 23

Review - Shattered

Shattered
Alaskan Courage Book 2
By Dani Pettrey
Publisher: Bethany House Publishers
Pub. Date: Feb. 1, 2013
ISBN: 978-0764209833
ASIN: B00AFWM28G
Pages: 368
Buy Link: http://ow.ly/hLsy9
Blog Tour: http://litfusegroup.com/author/dpettrey

Review:

In this exciting sequel to last year's Submerged, Piper McKenna is in for a surprise when her estranged brother, Reef, shows up at her doorsteps covered in blood. The very same night, not too far away, a young woman is found murdered and two witnesses confirm that Reef was at the scene of the crime. Despite the fact that Reef claims he is innocent of the murder, the sheriff arrests and charges him with murder.

Piper's relationship with her brother has many flaws, but she believes that he is telling the truth. She tries to get her friend, Deputy Landon Grainger, to help her prove Reef's innocence, but Landon is bound to enforce the law and is put in an awkward position.

To help her brother, Piper must uncover a mystery that will take her deep into the backcountry of Canada as she tries to unravel who the real killer is.

Friday, February 22

Book Blogger Hop: Feb. 22nd - 28th

Welcome to the new Book Blogger Hop!


Grab the Button!

If you want schedule next week's post, click here to find the next prompt question. To submit a question, fill out this form.

What to do:

1. Post on your blog answering this question:

Which do you prefer most: a printed book or an Ereader?

2. Enter the link to your post in the linky list below (enter your Blog Name and the direct link to your post answering this week’s question. Failure to do so will result in removal of your link).

3. Visit other blogs in the list and comment on their posts. Try to spend some time on the blogs reading other posts and possible become a new follower.  The purpose of the hop is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.

Thursday, February 21

The Friday 56 - The India Fan



Rules:
Grab a book, any book. 
Turn to page 56. 
Find any sentence, (or few, just don't spoil it) that grabs you. 
Post it. 
Add your (url) post below in the Linky at http://fredasvoice.blogspot.com/

Audio Review - Under the Black Ensign

Under the Black Ensign
By: L. Ron Hubbard
Director: Jim Meskimen
Voices: Marisol Nichols, R.F. Daley, Jim Meskimen, Phil Proctor, Thomas Silcott, Michael Yurchak
Studio: Galaxy Press
Release Date: September 8, 2008
ISBN: 978-1592123339
Running Time: Approx. 2 hours

Review: 

The golden age of the 1930s and 1940s was otherwise known as the Pulp Fiction Era as the newsstands were overflowing with magazines. Some were the fancy, glossy magazines and the rest had ragged trims, vivid covers, cheap brown pulp paper, and very cheap prices. These pulp magazines were full of stories ranging from adventures on the high sea to quests on other planets. Galaxy Press has been releasing L. Ron Hubbard's short stories from that era onto audiobooks under the Stories from the Golden Age, which they sent me a complimentary copy of Under the Black Ensign in exchange for my honest review.

Under the Black Ensign was originally released in the August 1935 issue of Five Novel Monthly and centers on the first mate of the ship Randolph, Tom Bristol, who happens to be forced in becoming a crewman aboard the British HMS Terror led by Sir Charles. The crew aboard the military ship is treated horrible. Trouble occurs for Tom when he is accused of trying to kill someone with a marlinspike. Then the unthinkable happens! The HMS Terror is attacked and taken over by a band of deadly pirates!

Instead of being taken prisoner, Tom gets appointed to navigator for the now pirate ship HMS Terror, but trouble seems to follow the poor lad. He is soon accused of killing a fellow shipmate and for knowing that an ensign happens to be a Lady. For punishment, he is marooned on a deserted island. He is left with a supply of water and a gun with only a few bullets. As it turns out, he is not exactly alone on the island. After some quick thinking, Tom comes up with a plan for revenge.


Wednesday, February 20

Become More Sociable with Hypnosis

I've been a shy person for all of my life. I recall hiding behind my mother's leg when I was a little kid when strangers would approach. Throughout my elementary school years, I kept to myself and didn't speak much during class, resulting in me having no friends. Junior High and High School was even worse, resulting in me being bullied and lead me down a path of depression. My shyness has become better over the years, but I still have a problem being around crowds and being sociable around others.

I'm well aware that it is a psychological problem that can be fixed with therapy, but with all the healthcare drama, I can't afford it. Therefore, I became interested in hypnotherapy. After doing some research, I asked hypnoshop.com if I could review a few of their products. They nicely agree to send me two free MP3s in exchange for my honest review.

Overcome Shyness is narrated by Barrie St John. The session runs just over twenty-three minutes, so it easy to find time during the day to listen to it. Just like any other hypnosis, you shouldn't listen to it while you are driving. You should be either lying down or sitting in a char. You need to be relaxed during the sessions. The session uses relaxing hypnotic music in the background while Barrie St John guides you into a relaxation state of mind. Once relaxed, Barrie instructs you on how to be relaxed around others, especially when you are around crowds.

Reorganizing My Life

Being stuck at home with flu has been boring for me and I'm dreading tomorrow because there is suppose to be a big snowstorm, meaning I'll probably be stuck inside the house for a few more days. Yikes!

I've started an early spring cleaning by reorganizing one shelf in the bedroom closet. I know it is only one shelf, but it is a start at removing all this clutter. I'm thinking about buying some kind of multimedia storage to hide all my music CDs and DVDs.

I would like to do something with the walls. I have a poster of The Outlaw Josey Wales in my bedroom that I would like to move to the living room, because my Clint Eastwood movie collection is in there. I was also thinking I should have a picture of my cats blown up by poster printers and tacked to wall, but that may look a little tacky. Maybe I should have a family photo made by custom poster printers, have it framed and mounted on the wall? That would probably look better.

DVD Review - Beverly Hills Teens Volume One

Beverly Hills Teens Volume One
Voices:  Hadley Kay, Michael Beattie, Karen Bernstein, Terri Hawkes
Studio: Mill Creek Entertainment
Release Date: February 19, 2013
ASIN: B00AQ590C8
Run Time: 722 minutes
Rated: G

Review:

Anybody who grew up in the 1980s must remember the animation boom on Saturday mornings and weekday afternoons. I have great memories of sitting in the floor eating a bowl of cereal and watching my favorite toons. Mill Creek Entertainment has released volume one of the 1987 series Beverly Hills Teens. The series was similar to the popular Sweet Valley High books as it involved the daily lives of rich teenagers. Yes, the show was aimed for a female audience, but I found myself watching several episodes as I waited for Alvin & the Chipmunks to start.

Beverly Hills Teens had a wide variety of characters such as the scheming Bianca Dupree, the laid-back Blaze Summers, the money crazed Buck Huckster, the 10-year-old freshman Chester McTech, the part-time model Larke Tanner, and the jock Troy Jeffries. 

The 32 episodes on Volume One are:

Tuesday, February 19

Audio Review - Devil's Manhunt

Devil's Manhunt
By L. Ron Hubbard
Director: Jim Meskimen
Starring: Edorado Ballerini, Bob Casco, R. F. Daley, Jim Meskimen, Richard Rocco Talt Ruppert, Johsh R. Thompson, and Michael Yurchak
Studio: Galaxy Press
Release Date: February 21, 2011
ISBN: 978-1592123858
Running Time: 2 hours 14 minutes

Review:

Westerns are a dying breed, especially on television and on the big screen. Even fiction novels are becoming a thing of the past. It is nice to see Galaxy Press reviving the genre by bring L. Ron Hubbard's short stories onto audio books, featuring talented voice actors, outstanding music, and unique special effects.

Galaxy Press nicely sent me a complimentary copy of the Devil's Manhunt, winner of the International Book Awards. The story first appeared in the February 1950 issue of Famous Western. The audiobook also features two additional stories, Johnny, the Town Tamer and Stranger in town.

Monday, February 18

Monday Morning Madness #6: Thrift Store Finds



I guess you can say books have been best friends for the majority of my life, well ever since I could read. I grew up in small town with an even smaller library full of out-of-date books. The school's library was just as small. I bought (well my parents did) many books through the scholastic flyers and book fairs held at school. The rest of the books came from garage sales, back when garage sales were worth going to. My first trip to Barnes & Noble didn't occur until I was a teenager, which I would buy a variety of books that were on the bargain shelves.

I don't go the city very often; therefore I don't buy books from Barnes & Nobles anymore. I have been a member in several book clubs over the years and, yes, I have bought books from Amazon.com. Most of the books I own came from thrift stores (AKA - used books), which I go to once a week, normally on Saturdays when anything with a white tag is half off. I use to have a weekly "Great Finds" post on the books I bought, but I ended it last year. Since I didn't have anything planned for this post today, I decided to write about my recent finds.

In a rare non-book buy, I bought Scrubs: The Complete Fourth Season brand new, still in it's originally plastic wrapping, for only a $1.50! I've only seen a handful of episodes of the series, but I couldn't turn down a bargain! Awhile back I also bought Munsters Go Home on DVD.

Now on to my recent books finds:

Sunday, February 17

Review - L. Ron Hubbard Presents Writers of the Future Volume XXVIII

L. Ron Hubbard Presents Writers of the Future Volume XXVIII
Publisher: Galaxy Press
Pub. Date: June 17, 2012
ISBN: 9781619860766
ASIN: B007TC8FRM
Pages: 594
Buy Link: Paperback, Kindle

Review:

Writers of the Future is a yearly writing contest founded by the late L. Ron Hubbard. The contest takes placed quarterly. The contest is held quarterly for new unpublished writers with the winner receiving $1,500. The quarterly winners compete for an additional $5,000 and a trophy with a gold quill and star set in red-based lucite. The four top writers from each quarter also get published in an annual anthology.

I was well aware of the Writers of the Future anthology, but I have never read one before Volume XXVIII, which I received free of charge from Galaxy Press in exchange for my honest review.

Saturday, February 16

ARC Review: Sleep Fat Wake Up Thin

Sleep Fat Wake Up Thin: How to Lose Weight F.A.S.T Without Struggle
By Kenn Kihiu
Publisher: Group Fitness USA Media

ASIN: B00AXDU9BO
Buy Link: Kindle

Review: 

Over the years I have read several diet and fitness books. The majorities of them are supporting some type of diet pills, shakes, or exercise equipment. Sleep Fat Wake Up Thin: How To Lose Weight F.A.S.T. Without Struggle is written by Kenn Kihiu, the creator of The DanceX Workout & 8020 Body. I eagerly signed up to review Sleep Fat Wake Thin, courtesy of the author in exchange for my honest review.

What does F.A.S.T stand for?

It means: F is for fasting, Short and Flexible. A is for Alkalinity and Water. S is for Sugar and Insulin. T is for Taming Appetite, Behavior, and Cravings.

Friday, February 15

Book Blogger Hop: Feb. 15th - 21st

Welcome to the new Book Blogger Hop!


Grab the Button!

If you want schedule next week's post, click here to find the next prompt question. To submit a question, fill out this form.

What to do:

1. Post on your blog answering this question:

What upcoming book in 2013 are you most looking forward to reading? 

2. Enter the link to your post in the linky list below (enter your Blog Name and the direct link to your post answering this week’s question. Failure to do so will result in removal of your link).

3. Visit other blogs in the list and comment on their posts. Try to spend some time on the blogs reading other posts and possible become a new follower.  The purpose of the hop is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.

Making a Few Extra Bucks With An Early Spring Cleaning

Spring is over a month away, but my place is in dire need of a spring cleaning or a major overhaul. My desktop is cluttered with piled up books (paperbacks and hardbacks), a huge stack of music CDs, the cordless stereo headphones that probably need to be charged, countless Walmart receipts scattered about, seven inkless pens, and about ten dollars of lose change. The living room looks worse with dozens of DVDs stacked up, more books, video games that I never play, dirty coffee mugs, and puzzle boxes on the floor. After one look at my disaster area, I thought, “Has Amelia Bedelia been in here?”

The old saying goes, “A cluttered desk is the sign of a cluttered mind. A tidy desk is the sign of an insane mind.”

For me, a messy area can be a major distraction when I’m working on writing projects. At times it can be a mental drag when I’m unable to locate important papers or books because they’re buried under a pile of junk, it is the biggest time waster.

What should I do with the books, music and movies that no longer interest me?

Considering my current financial situation, I think the last two are my best options. I know people that have made money from garage sales, but in my town you have to have a permit. Plus, I would have to run an ad in the local newspaper about the sale. Therefore, I believe I would lose money by having a garage sale. Maybe I should sell my wii, books, music CDs, puzzles, and movies online. I know there is a small fee for posting items, but I think I could make a little profit.

My final thoughts is that I could either:

The Friday 56 - Writers of the Future Volume XXVIII



Rules:
Grab a book, any book. 
Turn to page 56. 
Find any sentence, (or few, just don't spoil it) that grabs you. 
Post it. 
Add your (url) post below in the Linky at http://fredasvoice.blogspot.com/

Thursday, February 14

Guest Post with author Traci Douglas



 Happy Valentines Day!

Someone asked me an interesting question today.

Do you believe in Love At First Sight?

My knee-jerk reaction was: Absolutely. But then, after I thought about it a bit, I’m not so sure.

I believe in instant like at first sight, and definitely lust at first sight. (Hugh Jackman, Colin Firth and Bradley Cooper, to name a few… HELLO people!) Even friendship at first sight. In fact, some of my best friends are people I knew right away I’d get along with.

But true love at first? Not so much.

To me, true love is something deeper, something that takes time to ripen—like a fine wine.

Tuesday, February 12

Audio Review - Man-Killers of the Air

Man-Killers of the Air
Director: Jim Meskimen
Starring: Shane Johnson, Cory Burton, R.F. Daley, Keli Daniels and Jim Meskimen
Studio: Galaxy Press
Release Date: April 15, 2009
ISBN: 978-1592122295
Approx. 2 hours

Review:

During the 1930s and 1940s, newsstands were overflowing with magazines, especially those made from cheap brown pulp paper, or otherwise known as Pulp magazines which featured popular authors such as Louis L'Amour, Robert E. Howard, Erle Stanley Gardner, and John D. MacDonald. In its hey-day pulp magazines had over thirty million avid readers each and every month. Pulp fiction authors only got paid one cent per word, forcing the majority of authors to write aggressively at times. They didn't write to impress critics, but instead they wrote for the readers, who devoured story after story and adventure after adventure.

Author L. Ron Hubbard also wrote over 150 short stories during the golden age and now Galaxy Press is releasing the stories onto audiobooks with talented voice actors and dazzling sound effects. Galaxy Press nicely sent me a complimentary copy of the award-winning Man-Killers of the Air, which first appeared in the June 1935 issue of Five Novels Monthly.

Smoke Burnham zooms in the sky in his mystery plane along with his flying companion, a pet cheetah named Patty. The crowd loves to watch him fly at the air shows, but Girard, a newspaper mogul that invested in Burnham, doesn't like him. Sure, he gives Girard great publicity, but Girard just wants the plans to his secret plane, which legally belongs to Smoke's girlfriend, the lovely Melanie King.

Free Golden Records Presents: A Golden Valentine

Do you remember listening to children stories and songs on vinyl records?

Golden Records started releasing classic and new children music to compact disc last year and they are at it again this year with their newest release, A Golden Valentine.

You can download the free A Golden Valentine Sampler consisting of ten songs at http://littlegoldenrecords.com/, featuring the talented voices of Cheryl Hines and Busy Philipps.





The tracks include:

Monday, February 11

Monday Morning Madness #5: Valentine's Day: Romantic or Commercial


Valentine's Day is nearly upon us, which means the floral shops will be working overtime and the department stores will be flooded with men trying to buy their loved ones a last minute gift. Don’t expect to get your mail early that day as I’m sure the postal workers will be overloaded with Valentine’s Day cards to deliver.

The majority of people probably think Valentine’s Day was created by Hallmark, but it was actually based on an early Christian saint named Valentinus. He was imprisoned for preaching to Christians and for marrying soldiers who were forbidden to marry. It was rumored that he healed the daughter of a jailer. When he died he left a final message “from your Valentine” to her.

Since all my relationships are doomed to begin with, I always spend my Valentine’s Day alone, not unless you count trading cards back in elementary school. Every year the room mothers would have a little party. The students (including me) would bring a homemade valentine’s box, which the best box would get a prize. Each kid would go around and drop a valentine into the box. It didn’t matter if you didn’t like that person as your mother would make you give a valentine to everybody, even the teacher.

Review - A Hero's Throne

A Hero's Throne
The Ancient Earth Trilogy
By Ross Lawhead
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Pub. Date: January 1, 2013
ISBN: 978-1595549105
ASIN: B00AE9I1OE
Pages: 336

Review:

I read anywhere between 100 to 250 books in any given year and only a few standout for me. One of those books happens to be the fantasy adventure The Realms Thereunder by Ross Lawhead released in 2011, so I was excited about reviewing the sequel A Hero's Throne, courtesy of Thomas Nelson in exchange for my honest review.

The sequel finds Daniel and Freya on the quest to save the hidden land of Nioergeard by stopping the dark forces from opening the portal and entering into our world. The land rests under the streets of England and only a few know that it exists. Eight years ago, Daniel and Freya stumbled upon the gateway, where they found the stone city and the sleeping knights.

The future of both worlds is in jeopardy. Daniel and Freya must rely on a Scottish police officer and ancient knight to help them return to Nioergeard and awaken the sleeping knights before the dark forces take over forever.

Saturday, February 9

Audio Review - Trouble on His Wings

Trouble on His Wings
Director; Jim Meskimen
Voice Cast: Jennifer Aspen, Bob Caso, R.F. Daley, Jim Meskimen and Matt Scott
Studio: Galaxy Press
Release Date: March 21, 2012
ISBN: 978-1592123087
Approx. 2 hours 7 minutes

 

Review:  

There was no internet, cell phones, or cable TV during the 1930s and 1940s, so people would find entertainment by seeing picture shows, listening to the serials on the radio, and reading magazines. The magazine stands were full of pulp magazines with ragged edges, pulpwood paper, embellished covers, and cheap prices. Pulps contained countless adventure stories by real storytellers of the time, such as H.P. Lovecraft, Elmore Leonard, and Ray Bradbury. Stories from the Golden Age is releasing all of author L. Ron Hubbard's short stories from the 1930s and 1940s onto audiobooks. Galaxy Press nicely sent me the award winning audiobook, Trouble on His Wing, originally published in the January 1939 issue of Five-Novels Monthly.

Trouble on His Wings is about a journalist (AKA a picture-chaser) named Johnny Brice, who will do anything to get the best story for World News. Along with his cameraman sidekick, Irish Donnegan, Johnny plans on getting the best newsreels of the cruise ship that caught on fire at sea. By time he arrives, the waters had claimed the cruise ship and the survivors were rescued. Johnny comes up with the bright idea of paying $5,000 for the pictures that the survivor took. It was great idea until Johnny risked his life saving a woman from the ocean. He has looses all footage from the shipwreck and gets stuck with a beautiful woman whom he names Jinx.

Friday, February 8

DVD Review - Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Rise of the Turtles

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Rise of the Turtles
Starring: Jason Biggs, Sean Astin, Rob Paulsen, and Greg Cipes
Studio: Nickelodeon/Paramount
Release Date: February 26, 2013
ASIN: B00AEVXGFG
DVD SRP: $14.99
Running Time: 145 minutes
Rating: Not Rated

Review:

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles crawled their way out of the sewers and back onto the small screen with a brand new series that debuted last fall on Nickelodeon with the talented voice cast of Jason Biggs as Leonardo, Sean Astin as Raphael, Rob Paulsen as Donatello, and Greg Cipes as Michelangelo. Rise of the Turtles will be released February 25, 2013 on DVD featuring the first six episodes, including the double-length series premiere and the special features,  6 "Making of Animatics" and the Theme Song Karaoke Music Video.

The new series finds the four turtles venturing out of the New York City sewers for the first time where they run into the Kraang (brain-shaped aliens piloting robots) who have kidnapped a young April O'Neil and her scientist father, Kirby. The turtles are only able to save April, who becomes their most trusted ally. To make things worse,  Oroku Saki (Shredder) learns that his old enemy, Hamato Yoshi (the turtles' mentor, Splinter), is living in New York and he dispatches his highly trained Foot Clan to go to New York and find Yoshi.

Throughout these six episodes, the turtles encounter a giant mutant plant Snakeweed, the spider-like mutant Spider Bytez, and the mad-scientist Baxter Stockman.

What Book Do I Want Thrown At Me?



Question of the week: Q: Happy Mardi Gras! If they were throwing the HOTTEST books off of a Mardi Gras float -- what would you do to have them throw to you…?

The Friday 56 - The Fiddler



Rules:
Grab a book, any book. 
Turn to page 56. 
Find any sentence, (or few, just don't spoil it) that grabs you. 
Post it. 
Add your (url) post below in the Linky at http://fredasvoice.blogspot.com/

Thursday, February 7

Review - Love Finds You in Glacier Bay, Alaska

Love Finds You in Glacier Bay Alaska
By Tricia Goyer & Ocieanna Fleiss
Publisher: Summerside Press
Pub. Date: Jan. 1, 2013
ISBN: 978-1609365691
ASIN: B00B4GPJWS
Pages: 320
Buy Link: http://ow.ly/gQiNn
Blog Tour: http://litfusegroup.com/author/Tgoyer
 
Review:

I've never been to the state of Alaska, but after reading a few other books set there I became interested in it, therefore I was excited about reading Love Finds You in Glacier Bay, Alaska from Summerside Press, which I received a complimentary copy in exchange for my honest review.

Life seems to be going great for the rising singer Ginny Marshall as she has just received a major recording contract, but she is hesitant to sign it. Being a famous singer is not as easy as it comes with many responsibilities and demands. Feeling too much pressure, Ginny travels to Glacier Bay, Alaska to seek the advice of her ex-fiancé, Brett Miller.

When Ginny arrives, she learns that Brett is on a kayaking trip. Instead of leaving, she decides to stay with Brett's Grandma Ethel. While she is waiting for Brett's return, she begins reading a pile of letters that Grandma Ethel left out. As she reads the letters, she unravels a love story between a missionary named Clay and the governess, Ellie, he hired to take care of his children. Through the letters, Ginny might find what is missing for her own life.

Wednesday, February 6

ARC Review - Safe in His Arms

Safe in His Arms
By Colleen Coble
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Pub. Date: January 29, 2013
ISBN: 978-1595549143
ASIN: B008R9CE50
Pages: 320
Buy Link: http://ow.ly/hc6cu
Blog Tour: http://litfusegroup.com/author/CCoble 

Review: 

In this sequel to last year's Blue Moon Promise, Margaret O'Brien was born and raised on a ranch in Larson, Texas. She doesn't care for household chores as she would rather be out helping her father on the ranch. Her brother had died in the war and ever since she has taken over his role in running the ranch. She hopes to one day inherit the ranch, but her dreams change when her father announces that he is soon to retire and he is leaving the ranch to her cousin. He wants her to fall in love, get married and raise a family instead of working as a rancher.

Margaret had given up hope of finding a husband and having children. She had accepted that her life is on the ranch, but know matter how she explains it to her father, he won't listen to her.

Tuesday, February 5

Review - Goodbye to Yesterday

Goodbye to Yesterday
The Discovery, Part 1 of 6
By Wanda E. Brunstetter
Publisher: Barbour Books
Pub. Date: Feb. 5th, 2013
ISBN: 978-1616260859
ASIN: B00AW3PXT8
Pages: 128
Buy Link: Paperback, Kindle

Review:

I've been reading Amish fiction for over ten years and I wrote the title and release date on a notepad for Wanda E. Brunstetter's newest release, so I could remember to keep an eye out for it in the stores. I guess I must be lucky, because it wasn't a day later that I received an email from Handlebar Publishing that Goodbye to Yesterday from Barbour Books was available to review. I eagerly agreed to review the book in exchange for my honest review. To my surprise, I found out that the book is a six-part miniseries, averaging about 120 pages a book (I'm guessing.).

Unlike most of Wanda's books where a young Amish man and woman falls in love and eventually gets married, the young couple, Luke and Meredith Stoltzfus, in Goodbye to Yesterday have already been married over a year. The life for these newlyweds isn't exactly easy as Luke has recently lost his job at a furniture store in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. He has been making a little cash here and there selling his handmade furniture at a local farmer's market and a few gift stores, but he constantly worries about their finances as the money in their savings account won't last forever.

Their money troubles have caused an emotional strain on the young couple as Luke is pulling away from Meredith. She has offered to get a job and help pay the bills, but Luke has been raised to provide for his family and that is what he is going to do. Out-of-nowhere, Luke receives a message from Uncle Amos that he is retiring from engraving tombstones. Uncle Amos wants to sale his equipment to Luke and to teach him how to engrave, but it would mean Luke would have to spend several weeks in Middlebury, Indiana to learn the trade.

Monday, February 4

Jewelry Is the Perfect Valentine's Day Gift

Wow! This year is already flying by quickly as Valentine's Day is next Thursday, which typically means that men will wait to the last minute to buy a gift for their spouses, significant others, daughters, mothers, grandmothers, etc. Why rush to buy a present when you can buy something online and have it delivered by Valentines Day?

We all know that women love jewelry and JewelryKind.com is a great online jewelry store to find the perfect gift. They carry a wide range of designs from rings, earrings, bracelets, pendants, chains to gold jewelry with diamonds. The jewelry is affordable so it can fit into any budget. All sterling jewelry above 3 grams is marked .925 and all gold jewelry is marked, no matter what the weight is. The online store is safe and secure. All orders are shipped within 1-2 days via standard delivery and it should arrive within 10-14 days.

Monday Morning Madness #4: Super Bowl Leftovers


Typically, I would write my morning ramblings after 7 AM, but with hundreds of thoughts rolling around in my mind and the caffeine from the two cups of coffee that I drank thirty minutes ago finally kicking in, I thought I would go ahead and get this written while everything is still fresh.

Weekends are normally jammed pack with errands, cleaning, writing reviews, etc., which was basically what it was on Saturday, with the exception that I did a little cooking and baking, which resulted in me eating one too many orange cinnamon rolls. They were more than delicious, but my diet is now out of whack.

I happened to be in a thrift store and stumbled upon an unopened Charles Craft infant bib and quilted bib for a $1.50. It’s been a while since I have cross stitched anything and my cousin and his wife just had a baby girl last weekend, so I bought the bib set. I spent Saturday afternoon sitting on my knees and going through my storage trunk full of patterns. By the time I found two perfect patterns, the damage had already been done to my knees as they were both a little stiff. I really do need to start doing yoga or maybe visit a doctor of physical therapy, so I can work out those kinks in my knees and legs.

Saturday, February 2

My Weekend Rush

When I was a kid, I always looked forward to the weekends as it meant I had two full days off from school. I would stay up late on Friday and Saturday nights watching low-budget horror movies and sleep in late the following mornings. I would go shopping with my mother on Saturdays, where I would normally buy a book and spend the rest of the day reading it. My many hobbies, such as puzzles, video games, plastic models, coin collecting, etc., would fill out the rest of the weekend.

How I miss those carefree weekends? Lately, my weekends have been nothing but stressful. Being single with no children, you would think I would have some free time on the weekends, but that is not the case with me.

As kids, we think we have too many responsibilities with school work, friends, and chores. As adults, we think having the weekend off from work would be less chaotic and more fun, which it can be at times, but the majority of the time we spend the weekend catching up on our lives.

Friday, February 1

Why Above Ground Pools Are Preferred For Growing Families

Many people have outdoor swimming pools that they can enjoy during the summer, while being covered over during the winter. Many of these are of the “above ground” type, with wooden, brick or other material for their frames and fencing to prevent people from falling off. Such pools are often a better choice than in-the-ground pools, especially for growing families.

Here are several of the reasons why.

Safety 
Above ground pools are generally much safer than in ground ones are. This feature is essential for families that have small children, who can easily fall into in-ground pools and be drowned. Above-ground pools are not accessible to children in the same way.

Health 
Another reason for choosing such a pool is that it is much healthier. This is because it is the leaves and other debris can be kept away from it. Also, just as the pool is inaccessible to children, so too it is inaccessible to animals, whose germs might contaminate the water. For the same reason, the process of cleaning and maintenance is a great deal less complicated than it is for a pool in the ground.

DVD Review - Hearts Afire: The Complete Series

Hearts Afire: The Complete Series
Starring: John Ritter, Markie Post, Billy Bob Thornton
Studio: Mill Creek Entertainment:
Release Date: January 8, 2013
ASIN: B00A2XQTF0
MSRP: $29.98
Number of Discs: 7
Running Time: 1410 minutes
Rated: TV-PG

Review:

In the fall of 1992, the late John Ritter (Three's Company) returned to television in the political sitcom Hearts Afire, playing John Hartman, a senator's aid and a recently divorced father of two boys. His life is flipped upside down when a down-on-her-luck journalist Georgie Anne Lahti (played by Night Court's Markie Post) walks into his office looking for a job and ends up staying at his house. Sparks fly between the two and they eventually tie the knot before the end of the first season. The second season changed the series setting from Washington D.C. to John's southern home town, where they buy a local newspaper office.

Billy Bob Thornton costarred for the entire series' run as Billy Bob Davis. Two and a Half Men's Conchata Ferrell joined the cast during the second season as Dr. Madeline Stoessinger; although she did play another character during the first season for two episodes. 

Mill Creek Entertainment has recently released the complete series with special features that includes bloopers and outtakes.

The episodes are:

The Friday 56 - Safe in His Arms



Rules:
Grab a book, any book. 
Turn to page 56. 
Find any sentence, (or few, just don't spoil it) that grabs you. 
Post it. 
Add your (url) post below in the Linky at http://fredasvoice.blogspot.com/