Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Book Reviews

Here's my take on the books I've read on Kindle so far:

Perfect Crime by Jack Erickson *****5 Stars
Aug. 2012
Title: Great short story!
First, let me say I don’t know Jack Erickson, I’m not related to him, nor have I been asked to give him a good review. He earned the five stars I gave him. His short story was tight and well written. Typos, grammatical errors—where? Normally, I don’t miss bad grammar and typos, so if there were any, I was too busy enjoying the story to notice. It takes a good writer to capture your imagination, and Jack Erickson did it for me. His style is unique and kept me glued to the storyline. Not only that, but at the end I was treated to a preview of two other short stories I can’t wait to read. There’s so much trash out there, it was really refreshing to read something worthy of five stars. Way to go, Jack! I’ll be back for more.

She’s Gotta Be Mine by Jennifer Skully

Title: Delightful Aug. 2012 ****4 Stars
I gave this book 4 stars because some of it was too unbelievable even for fiction. A woman who lusts after a serial killer, tries to help her husband find his high school sweetheart, and talks about how good she looks but doesn't feel it? That's poo. But it was so well written and kept me so interested, I had to give the author credit for that. The sex scenes were more than I care to read about, but even those were well written. I can't put my finger on it, but there was something about this book that makes me want to read more of Jennifer Skully's works. I would've given it 5 stars if the main character had been chasing after a mechanic or a doctor, anyone other than a serial killer, and if she had been helping her husband find a long lost friend, not an old girlfriend... but then we would've missed the animosity between said girlfriend and Roberta (Bobbie). Ah, Roberta (Bobbie), that was a little confusing. Still, the book is a good read. I won't be a spoiler, so I'll just say the ending was a (good) surprise. Kudos, Jennifer Skully!

Mile Marker 148 By Jess Butcher *****5 stars
Title: Loved it! 
I didn't read the previous review (spoiler alert) before I downloaded the book, and was glad I hadn't. When I realized the book was told through the eyes of a dog, I was impressed. I can tell you that now, since I see it's already been revealed that a dog was telling the tale. At the beginning when I read the part about "noisily licking my testicles" I went, Whoa...what? I had to continue. I'd never read anything like this. What a terrific concept. A dog telling about his experiences at Mile Marker 148. It was well-written, fun, and entertaining! Five stars for this short story. Thanks Jess Butcher!

Already Home by Vicky Lewis Thompson (Sons of Chance) ****4 Stars
Title: A good, short story. 
After reading the reviews on this short story, I had to read it because of all the complaints about it being rushed, etc. Of course it was rushed, it's a short story! People, start checking the page count! Then you'll know what you're getting. Already Home was a good read. Short and sweet---A tale about two people (Hutch and Trina) who have been hot for each other for some time, and when they get a chance to reunite, the sparks fly. The characters are likable and I couldn't wait to see how it was going to end. I wasn't disappointed. One star? No way. I've read full-length books that weren't as good as this short story. It was well-written with proper grammar, and I didn't find one typo. Give the author a break. It was a short story, for Pete's sake! Entertaining! Four stars!

Midnight Sun by M.J. Fredrick May 2012 **** 4 stars
Title: My first MJ Fredrick book.   
I spent Mother's day reading this book because I just couldn't put it down. I could've done without the intense sex scenes, but otherwise, I loved the book. Her writing reminds me of Sandra Brown. Will be looking forward to reading another one of MJ Fredrick's books.

Land of the Noonday Sun by Carmen DeSousa Aug. 2012
Title: Land of the Noonday Sun *****5 Stars
Land of the Noonday Sun is not the type of book I normally read, but I decided to give it a try after meeting the author on Twitter. And, I’m glad I did. It was a well-written, lovely Christian based/romance/suspense novel with interesting characters and a storyline that comes to a feel-good, dramatic conclusion. Good for you, Carmen DeSousa! Five stars!
NOTE: I failed to mention in my review on Kindle this is a YA book. If you don't like young adult novels this book isn't for you. 

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Visit Noon Whistle Pottery

If you're planning a visit to my neck of the woods in Virginia, be sure to stop at Noon Whistle Pottery on Main Street in Stanardsville. You'll be so glad you did. The shop is owned and operated by John and Holly, and has some of the most amazing stuff for sale, items you won't find anywhere else. I love this place. I'm always telling folks to stop by and check it out. A travelers paradise for those who love quaint little shops offering homemade crafts, pottery, paintings by local artists, and of course, my books.  
John makes gargoyles out of clay like you've never seen, and Holly crafts some of the prettiest dinnerware I've come across. Homemade handbags, jewelry, and so much more are offered there, too. Visit their website and see for yourself. Enjoy your visit, and tell them Ann sent you!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Donkeys—Are You Hungry?

Tom and I knew very little about donkeys when we bought them. We just thought they were cool and would be fun to have as pets. We didn't know what they ate or how to take care of them, but we figured we could learn just like we did with our chickens. And learn we did. We now know they eat and poop all day long. That's what they do. ALL DAY LONG! And they don't eat normal stuff like meat and potatoes. They eat grass, branches, twigs, hay, and tree bark. I'm sure there's probably more to add to the list, but for now, that's all we know about. Both Donkey and Sable have tried to nibble on my jeans, but I guess they don't have much interest in material things (pardon the pun), because they didn't strip the clothes off my back like they did the bark on the trees. Notice the tree in the picture (which used to be a healthy plum tree full of leaves and branches) has been stripped clean of bark all the way up as far as the donkey's teeth could reach. Note: The rest of the trees in the corral look the same way.

Because of their fondness for wood, they must have decided that the chicken coop looked like dessert, so they helped themselves to the trim. Fortunately, we nipped that in the bud before they could do real damage. We put up a separate fence just to keep them out of the coop. Sable is not happy about that. Donkey doesn't care—he's got me to nibble on.

Will they eat the fence? We'll just have to wait and see.

*Chairs in the chicken coop? The chickens needed a place where they could sit back and laugh at the donkeys.

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Pedicures for Donkeys

Donkey and Sable were treated to a pedicure this past Saturday. I don't know what else to call it. They had their hooves cleaned, clipped, and filed, so to me, they had a pedicure. I'm not saying they enjoyed the procedure, but they sure felt better afterward. Sable was prancing around, and Donkey had a big smile on his face. Perhaps they were just glad it was over. Andy & Cody (farriers/Value Shod 540-718-1503 Madison, VA) handled them beautifully. Even though the guys were gentle and friendly, the donkeys knew who they were. They saw `em coming and took off. Once Andy & Cody finally captured them, it was a breeze. The only thing missing was the nail polish. What? No nail polish for donkeys? Oh well... I guess that means no bows either.

The man in the camo pants is my husband, Tom, and you can tell by the smile on his face that he thought pedicures for donkeys was pretty cool. I do, too. What about you?