Archive for August, 2010

August 31st, 2010

August in Review

by Gwen

Bookworm by justina kochansky


August books finished 

The Doctor and the Diva by Adrienne McDonnell 2010 432pp

The Tree by John Fowles 1979/2010 NF 112pp

Living Organized by Sandra Felton 2004 NF 224pp

Silent Scream by Karen Rose 2010 608pp

97 Orchard by Jane Ziegelman 2010 NF 272pp

The Alchemyst by Michael Scott 2008 400pp

Radiance by Alyson Noel 2010 192pp

Angel of Death Row by Andrea D. Lyon 2010 NF 288pp

Free for All by Don Borchert 2007 NF 224pp

Penguin 75 (Commentary) 2010 NF 256pp

The Eternal Ones by Kirsten Miller 2010 416pp

Blind Man’s Alley by Justin Peacock 2010 480pp

Social Media Metrics by Jim Sterne 2010 NF 272pp

Johannes Cabal The Detective by Jonathan L. Howard 2010 304pp

Mom’s Guide to Earning Money Online by Barb Webb 2006 NF 224pp

The Wright 3 by Blue Balliett 2003 352pp

The Boneshaker by Kate Milford 2010 384pp

Hiroshima in the Morning by Rahna Reiko Rizzuto 2010 NF 336pp

The Associates by Richard Rayner 2008 NF 223pp

Paula Deen’s Savannah Style by Paula Deen & Brandon Branch 2010 NF 224pp

Think of a Number by John Verdon 2010 418pp


21 books and 6,337 pages of mostly delicious reading. (Art just pointed out to me that War and Peace is only 1296 pages long)

Some favorites-

*If you like a bit of cooking in your history, make sure you check out my Cross-Bloggination post at The Lost Entiwife or the review of 97 Orchard.

*New to YA? You must read The Eternal Ones.

*My review isn’t up yet, but I LAUGHED AND LAUGHED at Johannes Cabal The Detective. Seriously, the sarcasm was so funny that I was grateful that I wasn’t reading in public. Agatha Christie, eat your heart out.

All of that reading left us just enough time to take Murphy Grace, AKA the Beast, on his first trip to the beach. He did well, didn’t pee in the water, and is ready to go again.

Murphy at Pismo



August 30th, 2010

Review~ Living Organized by Sandra Felton

by Gwen

Living Organized by Sanda Felton

From Goodreads:

The Organizer Lady™ makes it easy for readers to develop strategies for mess-free living. Author of the best-selling Messies Manual, Sandra Felton shares her insight on the best ways to bring out the hidden beauty in messy houses. Included in this comprehensive guide to “cleaner living” are 100 little-known housekeeping tips, inspiring testimonies from recovering Messies, strategies for living with a disorganized people, and action plans to help win the clutter war. With enthusiasm and humor, Felton makes housekeeping easier and less overwhelming for the organizationally challenged.

Felton believes that there are two kinds of people, Cleanies and Messies. Right off the bat, that term, Messies, offended me. It is negative even though she tried to define them as busy people that have been overwhelmed or perfectionists that just give up with the size of the task.

Still, even after being constantly offended by the terminology, I carried on. Part 5, Interior Design for the Messie, had some of the best tips I have ever read on figuring out your style and decorating. If you have ever been stumped on just how to start with décor, this was great! The idea of starting from scratch is intimidating for people and it can be hard to trust your instincts. The book suggests collecting the things, colors, and fabrics that really speak to you, finding the things that they have in common, then running with that. Living Organized also reminds you to keep reality in mind when decorating. A white silk couch isn’t a good idea when you have three toddlers and a black dog, for example.

I was all ready to forgive being called a Messie and make some changes until I read the chapter titled, Dear Husband, A Letter to the Husband of the Messie. If I hadn’t been reading this on my iPod, it would have been thrown across the room and most likely burned in effigy. I have never had such a visceral reaction to ANY book before.

Let me just give you a taste.

“You resent the condition of the house in which you are forced to live and imagine that the homes of other men returning home from work are havens of rest and order. “

“You felt that surely her pride as a wife and mother- as a woman- would help her overcome this chronic state……Surely if she cared more about you and the children or understood how important it was to you, she would try harder.”

My long hidden feminist hackles came out with a vengeance with this chapter. I don’t know about you, but I see a marriage as a team and the freaking messes don’t create themselves. While I work from home and accept that it means that I am the chief cook and bottle washer, that doesn’t mean that I am the maid. This may have been acceptable in the 1950’s, but it isn’t going to happen in my house today.

I got this for free on the Kindle and it was worth what I paid for it. There, I am off my soap box.

Living Organized by Sandra Felton

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Print Length: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Revell (June 1, 2004)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services
  • Gwen

    August 26th, 2010

    A Bit about Me(Me) ~ I want to be Clad in Leather!

    by Gwen



    It is time once again, to step out from behind the book and get to know one another better. 

    We all have a story and a life beyond the book and thanks to Danielle from There’s A Book, we get share. She asks the questions and we get to answer.

    Who is your favorite female character, in a book or on a TV show/movie? Why?

    My favorite female character would have to be Sydney Bristow from Alias. Played by Jennifer Garner, she proved that women are just as accomplished as men and can look hot while doing it!


    I mean, she had a cool wardrobe, got to go to all sorts of neat places and no one got the best of her. (sure, there were often people shooting at her, but hey, danger can be exciting. Right?) That is something that I really admire in a person, even if she happens to be fictional.


    Sydney could do it all and manage to look stunning at the same time. Now any woman that can do that and save the country while dealing with the fact that her mother is a Russian Spy. When my mom defected to another political party I was a mess for days. (I am still not over it that, traitor)

    Sydney doesn’t take $%$ and isn’t afraid to dole it out and I wish that I was that strong.


    One other character that I really can identify with is Dana Sculley from The X Files. She rocked it too, but didn’t have the wardrobe that I could drool over.


    August 26th, 2010

    Cross-Bloggination with Danielle from There’s A Book

    by Gwen

    There's a Book

    Thank you so much to Gwen for hosting me this month! I’m really excited about sharing my pick for this month’s Cross-Bloggination! In looking back over the month I thought about all the great books I’ve had the opportunity to read, but one in particular stood out above the rest. Not only because I thoroughly enjoyed the book, but also because of the guest post by the author that accompanied my review. So, without further hesitation, my choice…


    The Death and Further Adventure’s of Silas Winterbottom by Stephen Giles

    This is the story of three very different, very unique children and their devious Uncle’s attempts to manipulate them to his dying day. And it’s brilliant! Adele, Milo and Isabella are three cousins from completely different walks of life, though each of their families struggle to make ends meet and live as luxuriously as they wished they could. That is until they each receive a mysterious letter with $10,000 in it and an opportunity to inherit a fortune from their recluse Uncle, Silas Winterbottom. In a strange and surprising turn of events suddenly it’s the children who are fighting for their lives and not their dying Uncle.

    Not only were the characters and the story brilliant, but the author is just as amazing. In his guest post Stephen Giles discussed a bit about the book that got him “hooked” on reading as a child. For Stephen it happened to be The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe by CS Lewis. Not only is this an all time favorite book of my own, but the way you could see it reflected in Giles’ own story was perfect. In no way were the stories similar, truly. It was more in the that way Giles developed his characters into rich and meaningful parts of a bigger picture. You could see how his passion for reading truly impacted his love of storytelling. Not only that, but his description of Turkish Delight is one not to miss!


    Stephen M Giles

    It was honestly my favorite author visits and I’m eager to read more by Giles. The Death and Further Adventure’s of Silas Winterbottom is out now and I’d highly recommend the story to children and adults alike. Though it’s especially great for middle grade readers and those that may be a little reluctant to pick up a book. I’m also holding a giveaway for one copy of the book, so make sure you enter before the 3rd of September for your chance to win a copy of The Death and Further Adventure’s of Silas Winterbottom.

    Thank you so much Gwen for having me on today! I loved having the opportunity to chat a little more about this fantastic book and author.

    It was a pleasure to have you here Danielle & I am going to have to snap this one up for the grandkids.

    August 24th, 2010

    Show Your Love of Books ~ The Journal

    by Gwen

    My mom bought me an early birthday present a few weeks ago. A Kindle!! Wait. Don’t celebrate yet, it is still on backorder. Isn’t that just the worst? I think Dante should have added another circle of you know what for things that are backordered.

    Moving on, the journal was a big hit last week, so let’s go with that. Do you journal or keep track of your books on paper?

    Devilish Leather Journal

    Devilish Leather Journal, by Kreativlinks, $47

    12th Night Journal

    12th Night Journal, by Immortal Longings, $35

    Vintage Envelope Journal

    Vintage Envelope Journal, by Monorail, $20

    Handsewn Notebook

    Hand Sewn Notebook, by Wee Bindery, $29

    I do keep a little book with a list of books that I have read, just title, author, and year published. I don’t know about you, but I have had too many computers crash to trust such an important things not to have an old school list. I also journal off and on.