Jan 28, 2010

What Are You Reading?

Rachel's Cat Stats
Watching: Love Actually (again!)
Listening to: Love Actually soundtrack (makes the joy last longer)
Making me smile: Fergus pretending he's the biggest dog in the house
(that's him below)

I'm an absolute book lover. There are several things I like that I could live without - a good book is not one of them.

And one of the most special times for a book lover is to find a new-to-me author whose writing I can sink into. Especially if they have a backlist. All those new books to read!

I do have a few authors I need to try, based on recommendations. Georgette Heyer would be near the top of that list. Unfortunately when I was first told to read her, I wasn't given any titles, so I bought a book randomly only to find it was one of her 1920's mysteries. It didn't grab me the way I'd hoped and it took me a while to work out that these weren't the books people had raved to me about. Now I need to try her again - a Regency this time (and I've seen they've brought her books out again Downunder with gorgeous covers!).

I'm reading something fabulous now - Anne Gracie's To Catch A Bride. I'm almost finished and going slow because I don't want it to end. But the good news is, it's the third in a series and I haven't read the others yet. Guess what's next on my To Be Bought list! =)

Before this, I listened to Susan Elizabeth Phillips's What I Did For Love on audiobook. Loved it! And I surprised myself by being completely swept away by the Twilight books.

So now I have a question for you: who else should I put on my To Be Tried list? Tell me the last great book you read, or if you're reading something now that you're enjoying, please share the details! My reading addiction needs new titles! =)


  1. Good Aussie reads are Bronwyn Parry's two books As Darkness Falls and Dark Country..Fiona Palmers Family Farm, Fleur McDonald's Red Dust- with a new one coming out shortly... If your into action I love Matthew Reilly- and my all time favourite author would have to be Diana Gabaldon's cross stitch series- love it to death!
    If you want to see some more of my favourite books I have a blog of my book case with heaps of my other favourites :) http://karlybm.blogspot.com

  2. I love books too. And I love being swept away by a great tale. Anne Gracie totally does that for me.

    If you like Historicals - Try Courtney Milan's PROOF BY SEDUCTION http://www.courtneymilan.com/. I can't wait to get my copy. I read her short story in the THIS WICKED GIVE in THE HEART OF CHRISTMAS anthology - totally loved it. But she is a new author with no backlist.

    I am reading DRAWN INTO DARKNESS by Annette McCleave - just started it. There is a slew of new authors from my 2008 Golden Heart finaists group. Kelly Gay, Kay Cassidy, Susan Gee Heino, Susan Seyfarth, Kris Kennedy to name a few.

    I haven't had much time for reading lately - but an old time fave is Anne McCaffrey and her Dragonriders of Pern books.

  3. I'm reading a fabulous debut novel - by YOU!! :)

    Prior to starting your book, I read the third book in a series by Laura Iding. They were great reads. Laura is a medical writer and this series was in the fictional town of Cedar Creek.

    I've got Nikki Logan's next on my E-Reader and I'm sure a few treasures listed. Now I wish I had the time to read them all!

  4. Karlene, great recommendations! I've been told to read Cross Stich so many times - I really have to read it. I even have a copy from my sister!

    Thanks for the link to your blog list too - will definitely check it out. Hoping to find some new favourites!

  5. Rach, not sure I'd have many on my bookshelf that would interest you. But here are the aurthors I'm currently re-reading *grin*
    - Dick Francis (light mystery)
    - Gerald Durrell (autobiographical nature/animal)
    - James Herroit (almost autobiographical vet)
    - David Eddings (fantasy)
    - Jean M. Auel (historical ie cave man)

  6. Oooh Nikki Logan's NEXT! Lucky you. I loved Lights, Camera...Kiss the Boss. Not a style of book I would normally buy. Lucky I won a copy as it's changed my view (and my view of the art of writing). I am also No. 1 fan of Bron Parry - even her latest short story in Woman's Day made me cry!

  7. I love finding wonderful new authors with lovely backlists, too. I only recently started reading Diana Gabaldon's series, but it is fabulous. And I just read The Girl with the Dragon Tatoo by Stig Larsson and am looking forward to the next two books in that series.

  8. While you're feeling historical... I really enjoy Deanna Raybourn (her "Silent in the Grave/Sanctuary/Moor" series). She makes regency very accessible and portrays her characters with such authenticity without losing any of the romantic punch. I'm particularly fond of her half-gypsy, opiate-addicted Nicholas Brisbane.

    (And big kisses to Nicky for buying Lights Camera and Jenn for loving it :) )

    (And kisses to Fergus...)

  9. Rachel! I'm another Love Actually fan! I completely approve of your Cat Stats - you can never get too much of a good movie! ;)

    Books??! Whispering so my TBR pile doesn't wobble and rain books down on my head! And you've mentioned Georgette Heyer - these are on my must get list! Haven't read the Twilight series and that's another must. My TBR pile is rocking alarmingly with the mention of more books to add! I loved the Harry Potter books - not just for kids!

    And then my fave reads and keepers! My shelves are bulging!

    But my latest great read was a non-fiction by Allan and Barbara Pease called Why Men Want Sex and Women Need Love.

  10. Tracie, Courtney Milan sounds fabulous. Will go look at her site. I *love* a good historical.

    Oooh, all those debut authors! I've read excerpts of Kris Kennedy before and *really* liked her. Must go find one of her books. And will google the others too. Thanks!

  11. Nicki F, how very sweet of you to be reading my book! =)

    Laura Iding, hey? Sounds good. I've only read Medicals by Sharon Archer, Marion Lennox and Amy Andrews, but I loved them all, so perhaps it's time to extend my range. Will begin with Laura Iding. Thanks!

  12. Anita, you think that list wouldn't interest me? I love James Herriot! Was reading my nephew a story from "Cat Stories" just a couple of weeks ago. It's a collection of stories with a lovely hardcover and a gorgeous picture on the jacket. I have "Dog Stories" and others too. =)

    Jean M Auel is on my bookcase - I read heaps of her Clan of the Cave Bear series when I was in highschool. Maybe I should go fish them out again...

    Now, David Eddings is a name I hear a lot, which usually is a sign of someone good. Must check him out. Good recommendation.

  13. Jenn, wasn't Lights, Camera fabulous? Wait till you read the next ones! I've had a sneak peak at the one with the wild brumbies and the one with the whale. Gorgeous!!

    Bronwyn Parry is still on my To Be Bought list. People are raving about her and she's such a great person that I really want to read the books. Maybe I'll start out with the story you mentioned (this week's Woman's Day has a short story by Bron set in the same town as her books).

  14. Rachel, also add Carol Marinelli's Medical's to your list. They are fast paced, excellent reads.

    I read one buy her just before Xmas - Emergency: Wife Lost and Found. It was fabulous and the emotion in the first couple of chapters was amazing!

    Also if you can find the Spy Games series by Wendy Rosnau, they are a brilliant read too.

    BTW I've also got your second book on my e-reader to delve into.

    Nikki, absolute pleasure to buy your book - can't wait to read it. I've got to support my fellow namesake and fellow Sandgroper.

  15. Ooh, it was my wedding anniversary through the week and the dh and I snuggled up with a bottle of champagne and Love Actually -- I don't know if I could ever get sick of that movie.

    Okay, Rach, you definitely have to read Georgette Heyer. My faves are 'The Grand Sophy', 'Faro's Daughter' and 'Cotillion' -- they're all brilliant and a great place to start.

    And for something completely different you could try 'A General Theory Of Love' by Thomas Lewis, Fari Amini and Richard Lannon (they're Professors of Psychiatry at the Uni of California). One of the back cover blurbs says "In elegant prose the authors argue why we need a culture attuned to the ways of the human heart." I loved it.

    Michelle Douglas

  16. Ohhh, I adore Love Actually and have never been able to choose a favourite story. As for books? I just finished Catcher in the Rye, again, after my son had to read it for school. I loved it as much as when I was 15, and that was a hundred years ago.

    Adored The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak a brilliant Australian YA author and The Help by Kathryn Stockett, both brought me to tears. Have a huge pile I'm working through. Ahh to have more time...

    Loved your book, Rachel. Pure magic.


  17. Michelle, another vote for Cross Stitch. Right, it's coming off the bookshelf right now and going on the bedside table. =)

    Dh read Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and really liked it. He got the second and third ones straight away and liked those too. Did you know there's a movie in the works?

  18. Nikki, I haven't heard of Deanna Raybourn, so that's a great suggestion. A half-gypsy, opium addicted hero? Now that I have to read. =)

    Fergus appreciates your kisses. In fact he appreciates anyone who isn't me today because I've gone and done the unthinkable... bathed him!

  19. Sharon, another person who's meaning to read Georgette Heyer. Did you see Michelle Douglas's recommendations further down?

    Oh, yes, Harry Potter! Loved each and every one of them. Can't wait for movie 7. I checked the other day and the first part will be out in November and the second part mid-next year. Yay!

  20. Nicki F, another good recommendation. I've heard *very* good things about Carol Marinelli.

    Oh, and you have my Nico on e-Reader! He was fun to write - a very strong character in my head from the start.

    Spy Games. Roger, have made a note of the title and author. =)

  21. Hey, while we're all gathered here... I thought I'd just point out that 'Blackmailed Bride's Secret Child' is #5 on eHarlequin's bestseller list this week. Woo hoo. Looks like 'Claiming his Bought Bride' only vacated in order to make room for BBSC.

    Nice system, Bailey!!

  22. Michelle, what a lovely way to spend an anniversary! And, HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!

    Thanks for the suggestions of Georgette Heyer books. I'm a huge Jane Austen fan, so I'm pretty sure I'll like GH - I just need to get started and you've given me the places to do it. =)

    'A General Theory of Love' sounds fascinating! Thanks for the recommendation - the psych-trained part of my brain will love it.

  23. Sandii, interesting suggestions! The Book Thief had quite a lot of buzz in Australia - I think I should definitely check it out. And a friend of mine told me about The Help - sounds fascinating!

    "Pure magic"? Oh, you are *very* sweet!

  24. Hey, Logan, thanks for the heads up! =)

    Have just brushed, washed, dried, and re-brushed four dogs. Gah! Takes a good half day (and a pile of towels). Since your heroine in your novella actually has my four dogs, I'm wondering if she'd like to visit next bath-day and take her turn...?

  25. Georgette Heyer -- LOVE her. Start with The Grand Sophy, if you have the chance.

    Stieg Larsson, also good, in particular his second and third books. The movie of the first is great! He was a very intelligent man. It's a great shame he's dead.

    If you like sci fi, try Lois McMaster Bujold. A Civil Campaign is just the most funny, romantic book! (But you really should read the previous ones to have an understanding of the relationships between the characters.)

    There are so many wonderful books out there waiting to be read ... aren't we lucky!

  26. Ahhh Rach love this thread...books...always more on the TBR pile - even though the bookcases are overflowing... I have to admit it - I'm a book addict like you - with a varied taste and read kids through to adult books.

    My favourite book series at present - fantasy:
    well you already mentioned Jean M. Auel and David Eddings...
    Raymond E Feist - Magician
    Paul Collins - The Jelindel Chronicles and The Quentaris Chronicles - and backlist
    Michael Pryor -The laws of Magic series and backlist
    Kate Forsyth - Rhiannon's Ride series and backlist
    Robin Hobb - all her books

    You introduced me to Susan Elizabeth Philips - and am making my way slowly through her backlist - so won't go there...
    Just received some awesome books form a certain LoveCats grand prize win - those authors are all on my TBR and in progress pile - (grins and says THANK YOU again!!!!)

    Hugs to little Fergus who thinks he is Goliath Fergus!

    Bye 4 now

  27. Ooh I just watched 'Love Actually' again - can never watch that movie too much :)

    As for must-read authors. I read an absolutely delightful tale recently by Cally Taylor - it's a little bit different and in my opinion, a little bit fabulous. It's called 'Heaven Can Wait... but will he?'


  28. Emily, since you recommend starting my Georgette Heyer education with The Grand Sohpy and Michelle Douglas listed it above too, I'm just about to pop away and order it. Can't wait!

  29. Oooh, more suggestions from a fellow addict! Thanks, Tina! Isn't SEP just the best? In fact, I'm about due to reread some of hers...

    Hey, glad the prize books have started to arrive! I posted some of mine a couple of days ago and they turned up back again today in my letterbox - the address labels had fallen off and they'd been returned to sender. :(

    Thanks for saying hi to Fergus. "He's a very big dog" is a common refrain in our house, as in, "Well, of course he needs an entire 3 seater lounge to lie on - he's a very big dog". =)

  30. Rach, what a cool title! That would make me pick it up in the shops. Will keep an eye out for it.

    Yep, Love Actually is one of those movies you can watch again and again. Even dh loves it. And the sound track is fabulous too.

  31. Rachel you mentioned the Twilight books. I enjoyed them too - but I *loved* The Host - probably one of my favourite books aside from JR Ward's and my old favourite, Bitten by Kelley Armstrong.

  32. Hi Mel! I read the back of The Host and thought it might be a bit scary... perhaps I should have another look if you loved it. I don't know Bitten but just had a look at the website and it looks very intruiging. Thanks for the suggestions!

  33. ooh, I have 'the Host' and have never read (quit while yr ahead is my theory) Perhaps I'll revisit that thought... (sorry, sorry, not my blog was just passing through...)

  34. Hey Ms Rachel & the LoveCats,

    Ah reading - how much do I love thee? Let me count the ways....

    Well one of my faves has been mentioned - Cross Stitch - I dare you not to fall in love with Jamie! :))

    Keri Arthur is my author of the moment - fantastic UF there.

    Also JR Ward's books - reading latest Brotherhood book.

    Hmmm...what else? I too enjoyed The Host - different from the Twilight Saga (which I enjoyed immensely too).

    I finished Nikki's Lights, Camera....Kiss the Boss - brilliant. (have yours in my e-tbr pile Rachel :) )

    Have you read Denise Rossetti's The Flame & The Shadow? Seriously good stuff. As is Tracey O'Hara's Night's Cold Kiss.

    Oh goodness, so many wonderful authors out there. So little time. Oh and Anna Campbell -read Claiming the Courtesan and it's fantastic. And agree with you on Anne Gracie.

    E :)

  35. Hi Rachel! Huge congratulations on the continuing bestsellerdom! How fantastic is that?

    Oh, love the lists everyone been's giving to you. I definitely recommend reading Heyer. My favorites include Devil's Cub (I only just re-read it after many years and it's delicious), Venetia, The Grand Sophy or The Unknown Ajax.

    Definitely recommend Courtney Milan. She's a major new talent.

    I loved Christine Wells's Wicked Little Game last year. Fabulous read - all her books are.

    A couple of authors who have become auto buys for me are Liz Carlyle and Madeline Hunter. And I'm always recommending the C.S. Harris Regency mysteries that have a very strong romance theme running through them. The first one is What Angels Fear. Brilliant - and such a charismatic hero!

  36. Hey, Eleni, thanks for the shout out for CTC!

  37. Nikki, perhaps I'll wait and see what you think after you read The Host - tell me if it's scary. ;)
    Signed the Fraidy Cat

  38. Eleni, what a delicious list of books for me to follow up on! Some I've read and some will be added to the TBB list.

    I take your dare about not falling in love with Jamie and will report back. ;)

  39. Thanks for the congrats, Anna Campbell - you deserve some of your own... I see that the latest Australian Women's Weekly said,

    "No one writes big, bold, gutsy, historical romance like this Australian author. Campbell's writing has an engaging darkness and this tale of the handsome, but tortured, Sir Gideon and a suffering waif who is really an heiress, is hugely entertaining."

    So, I can see I have no choice - Captive of Sin will *have* to be added to my To Be Bought pile! =)

    Oh, you're the second person to say Courtney Milan, so yep, will read. And I loved the Liz Carlyle you recommended last year, so have been meaning to get some more.

    Christine Wells! Fab. I've got her first two books, but not this third one yet. Must get because she's great. And I haven't read a Madelaine Hunter, so she'll be a new to me author.

    You're full of good ideas!

  40. Rachel, I'm sorry - there's no escape from buying COS! Snort! And thank you for that wonderful plug for the Women's Weekly review - I'm still in a state of happy shock just down the road from you.

    By the way, wanted to say I read the SEP over Christmas and just loved it. She's amazing, isn't she? Loved the interaction between the hero and heroine!