Monday, December 31, 2007

December Books

Seven Wild Sisters by Charles De Lint B
Beth wanted me to read this… She loves De Lint, and I’m just not that enthralled. This is one of his better ones- focused on the story and not just enjoying himself in the magic of words… He writes fairy stories that are half story and half poetry, but this one actually has an interesting story and solid base to it. Many of his books attempt to put into words a very internal, poetic and imagaic world and DO NOT succeed. I think this one succeeds. It was good. Beth loved it. Side Note: The illustrations in this are lovely. A whole lot of fun and very appropriate for the material.

Blood Brothers by Nora Roberts A
The first in a new trilogy- Many details in this book reminded me of Stephen King’s IT: friends growing up in a small town, have an experience when they’re 10 which makes them aware of an overwhelming evil, they escape, move on and then come to realize the monster will be coming back, finally as adults they all return to battle the demon/monster. Of course, with Roberts you automatically get a romance... This was very good, and I’m looking forward to the next installment.

Feathers from My Nest by Beth Moore A++
Reflections on motherhood. Moore looks at specific items, whether a hairbrush or a string tied to a dresser, and reflects on the memories each brings back. Her children have just ‘flown the nest’, gone on to college and she is dealing with the empty nest by going over the precious times and the difficult times. She talks about how God holds a family together and the struggles families must deal with in today’s world. Excellent.

Gregor the Overlander by Suzanne Collins A
Just when I start thinking I’ve read all the books I’d like to, or found all the good authors in the whole world, God lets me find another one. (by the way, He normally leads me to a really good one when I pray at the library… Funny how kind He is about that.) So, this was really good and I already have the next one in the series! :) Kind of “Alice goes down the rabbit hole and meets the New York plumbing system”. Except Alice is a boy named Gregor and the Mad Hatter & the March Hare are spiders and rats who like to eat people… Really good YA fantasy.

Gregor and the Prophecy of Bane by Suzanne Collins A
Okay, I devoured this one- first, it’s a quick read. Second, it’s a good read. Continuing the adventures of Gregor and the fireflies/rats/bats and other fiendish Underlanders. Very good. Looking forward to the next ones in the series!

Dead of Night (compilation of 4 paranormal romances)
Here’s the sad truth… My mom buys romances like they’re candy, so there’s always one or more in the house that I haven’t read and probably didn’t/don’t really want to read. I avoid them altogether unless there’s a story by Nora Roberts- I like her characters and stories. She writes solid and interesting stories that stand on their own, which is why she’s moved on out of the romance section of the book store. Most romances are rather like a porn script: stupid lines and obvious plot leading the two (or more) people to a sex scene. In fact, it’s my opinion that most romances are a feminine version of Playboy… They’re just more culturally acceptable than the blatancy of naked pictures. I hate admitting this: I used to read everything my mom brought home- in fact, I read most of my mom's romances through high school & college. I don’t think they were good for me and my impressions of what true love is really like or should be… Okay! Enough. Here’s my thoughts on this particular grouping of romance stories.
Eternity in Death by J.D. Robb (Nora Roberts) B
This is the story that caused me to pick up the book. Enjoyed this one… I like most of her Eve Dallas mysteries. This one is about a guy who thinks he’s a vampire. Rather nasty when you get into the underbelly of the vamp believers world. This one’s based on vamp culture, not the fictional world of vampires (Anne Rice, Dracula, etc.). Not her best.
Amy and the Earl’s Amazing Adventure D
This one was lousy. Too much waiting for something to happen. Two people go back in time to find out rather silly things and end up falling in love. Predictable and stupid.
Timeless by Ruth Ryan Langan C
I wasn’t too sure about this one, but ended up enjoying it. A woman goes back in time and ends up discovering the secret of love. Predictable until the good ending.
On the Fringe by Mary Kay McComas B+
Really liked this one. A bored wife/teacher has the opportunity to see what her life would have been like if she hadn’t married her high school love. Very good story. Not your typical romance and very much about what day to day love is all about. Wish it didn’t come in this package, ‘cuz it really was a good story.

The Dead Zone by Stephen King B+
Plot: Johnny Smith is in a severe car accident and wakes up after an almost five year coma with the ability to see into the future.
After the Roberts’ book that reminded me of IT, I felt an urge to read some King. I think I liked this one… King is a tad bit dark for me, and I tend to find him rather vulgar and crude… Which is funny, ‘cuz I’ve read other horror and if Laurel K. Hamilton doesn’t qualify as crude I don’t know what does… I guess I like my fiction a bit sweeter. I don’t know. King’s a bittersweet romantic- I do get that. With way more blue collar in him than me. His style is “so in your face”- kind of the opposite of Charles de Lint… I did like the ending, although I didn’t think I would. I fell in love with Johnny, and was pained that life didn’t work out for him and his love, Sarah. I know love doesn’t always work out, but I kind of like it to work out in books, at least… In this situation it just couldn’t. I’m glad Johnny took care of the one thing he had to do- the one great evil he had to destroy, and I’m glad he didn’t really have to kill anyone to do it. Johnny & King circle around this question: If you had the opportunity to go back in time and kill Hitler, would you? You’d probably be caught and tortured, but would you do it if you could? It’s a worthwhile question… Kind of obvious in that: who'd be the guy who'd say no?? A dark question, but worth the asking.

It by Stephen King A-
Okay. Not a bit like Roberts’ Blood Brothers, which finally required me to reread this book. The only thing the two books have got in common is that these guys experienced a ‘bad thing’ when they were young and promised to come back and deal with it later if they had to. I enjoyed It more this time around… I think I relate to being a little older and going back to look at your childhood home. I also took the book a little slower this time around- I still think King reaches a point where the book is just too big and he tries to shut it down and it’s kind of out of control… But not as much as I thought back in college. I’m still upset that they don’t get to at least remember the special friends they had when they were little, even if they don’t get to keep them… I’m still horrified by the evil in this book, maybe even more now than in college…
Because I think that there’s a truth here- that it’s easier to close your eyes, not get involved, and just let evil happen. A Christian doesn’t have that option. We just don’t. We know the true horror- We know that there really is a monster- a lion roaring- who is seeking to steal, kill & destroy. And that we have been called to fight that monster with our faith, our scripture knowledge and the Holy Spirit. It was definitely a better read this time through- But also, more disturbing, more real…

Horseradish: Bitter Truths You Can’t Avoid by Lemony Snicket A
This book made me laugh. And it’s a VERY quick read. I haven’t been able to read ‘The Series of Unfortunate Event” Books all the way through, because after around 7 or 8 of them I got annoyed, ‘cuz nothing ever seemed to change or get better. Like reading bad romances- boy meets girl, a little sex, bang- they’re married, and baby makes three. In each of the Unfortunate Events books, the kids find someone new to live with, the Uncle shows up, things get bad, and then they get worse. Horseradish was fun, though. Took the concept of those silly inspirational books with a quote on each page and made it hysterical. Much of what he says is quite true, some isn’t very funny, but it was a good quick read.

Servant: The Awakening by L.L. Foster C
I don’t know how I got sucked into reading this one… The title? The cover? The blurb on the back? I just don’t know. I read the first three chapters and thought, ‘wow, this is pretty lousy. Surely it will get better.’ So, I took a break and read the Lemony Snicket book. Then I went back to this and read 3 more chapters. Then I thought well I want to know how it ends, and I’m already half-way thru… It did get better about 2/3rds of the way in, but that’s a long time for it to be so lousy.
It’s actually an interesting idea, but it’s not carried out very well. It’s kind of Frankenstein meets Professor Van Helsing. I got to the end of the book, read the author’s bio and was shocked that she’s written 60 or so books! I did some research, though and they’re all romances. Aah. Now it all becomes clear. Seems that you can get away with writing really lousy stuff if you’re a romance writer or an author of Christian materials…

Coyote Dreams by C.E. Murphy A
The third in Murphy’s Walker series. Loved this one! I admit our heroine is still a little dense, but we’re getting there… I hate it when the reader knows more than the main character! Reading this you spend about a quarter of the time wishing you could prevent her from being stupid. It is good to see her finally dealing with her boss in a different manner, even if it's not what you want for them... However, very good adventure- interesting ideas. Yay!

Why Men Hate Going to Church by David Murrow A/D
I did not like this book, but it had some really good points… There’s truth in here but it’s buried under some rather chauvinistic opinions and hidden by faulty assumptions about women. The church Jake & I attended that most directly fits Murrow’s description of a ‘feminine church’ was controlled by a couple of aging male deacons who didn’t want anything changed ever, loved the term ‘family of God’ and wouldn’t let the pastor do anything that would attract new members. I think Murrow makes valid points about the lack of men in church, their differences and the reasons they don’t attend church; however, it took me a long time to get past his language. Jake read one chapter and a couple pages and refused to read any more…

Without Due Process by J.A. Jance B
Breach of Duty by J.A. Jance A
My mom’s always got mysteries and romances lying around- these are in the first category. They’re mysteries with Detective J.P. Beaumont, an aging life-time cop as the main character. I’ve never read them, but grabbed a couple and gave ‘em a whirl. The first one was good, but the second one was really good. Breach of Duty has buried secrets, nasty crimes, a trail of clues, rather disturbing/disturbed & believable suspects and a sympathetic main character.

Insomnia by Stephen King A
From the inside flap: ‘Ralph Roberts is seeing some strange happenings in Derry, Maine. He sees auras around human beings that show him the horror threatening them. He sees a nice young research chemist like Ed Deepneau turn into a savage wife beater. He sees Charlie Pickering with blood in his eyes and a gleaming knife in his hand. And he sees three little bald doctors in the homes of the dying- and he begins to suspect who they really are. No wonder Ralph stays awake all night. You would, too.’
I really liked this King story... I fell in love with Ralph- the 70 something main character. The situation/mystery of it is arresting and strange and I suspect that this story is more like my normal fantasies than any of his other novels. Also, (apologies to Valette), but I have to say that this is a romance! The story is more about the depth and magic of ‘old’ love than it is really about defeating a horrible monster; although, yes, the horrible monster is defeated. I wish I could say he was destroyed, but this story is more like real life- Evil is defeated in an important & critical maneuver but not destroyed permanently.

Showdown by Ted Dekker C
This should have been better! I’ve read other stuff by Dekker- he writes strange Christian horror/adventure novels about the confrontation between good and evil. The idea was interesting- a stranger shows up in a small town with a message of hope, or is it a message of death? I slogged through the first half, and just felt like I was reading it ‘cuz I should… Beth reminded me that I didn’t have to read the whole thing! (How come I keep forgetting this??) So I skipped to the last quarter to finish it off… It was actually good for that last quarter. I think he just wrote too much. It’s kind of an apocalyptic redemption tale, and it had potential. I just don’t think it lived up to it, and that’s sad.

Until Proven Guilty by J.A. Jance A
The first book in the Seattle detective J.P. Beaumont series. Very good. Dark and sad. A little girl trapped in the world of her mother’s freaky weird cult is murdered. Finding who killed her is only half of the twisted mystery.

Harry Potter & The Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling A+
I love Harry Potter! This was a re-read.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Flower Child

Another silly quiz from Jake...
There are some very young and strange personality quizes on the site...

Which Decade Fits You?
You're a woman of two very different sides-- on the one hand, you're very traditional and conservative, believing in conventional ideas of family life and rarely having too much to drink. There is, however, that other part of you that knows that some ideas, though they may have worked before, may not be so appropriate anymore. You struggle to find a median between how you feel comfortable presenting yourself and what you believe is true in your heart. Remember that if you go with your gut, you usually can't go wrong.
Again, the quiz site is here if you're interested:

Friday, December 28, 2007


I took a silly quiz passed on from Jake... Just wanted to share. Mainly I ended up with the Dodge 'cuz it went FAST!!

If you're interested here's the link.
What type of truck are you?
Yeah its got a HEMI........
You like to speed and show off all the time

Everybody's on Vacation!!!

I've been on blog withdrawal!!!
I keep going to my friend's blogs and many/most of them are not writing for whatever reason: Christmas vacation trips, too busy... So I must be the only one with no life...

Anyway~ I've been jumping off their websites onto others trying to find something interesting, and I've been falling into Alice's Wonderland holes. I go in and then discover two hours have gone by and Abigail's crying for me to take her upstairs for her rest... (I love that! You have a kid that WANTS her rest? I do!! Deborah did NOT- She'd fight and fight and complain, but Abigail LOVES her rest.)

So, I've been pasting addresses in to share some of the really cool things I've found out there. Hope you enjoy them too!


Got this from Kiana's website, too-
Copied it for myself...

1. What specifically are you going to work on in the next week to become closer to God?
2. In what areas of your life do you find it easiest to compromise your standards?
3. Does your faith point others to Jesus? If so, how? If not, why not?
4. Can you give a recent example of a time you had to depend on God?
5. Have you spent daily time in prayer and in the Scriptures this week?
6. Who was the last person you shared your faith with?
7. How has your walk with Christ changed over the last year?
8. Have you been completely above reproach in your financial dealings this week?
9. Have you exposed yourself to any explicit material this week?
10. Are you truly a servant to people around you? Explain.


There was a group of woman in a Bible study on the book of Malachi. As they were studying chapter 3, they came across verse 3 which says:
"He shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver..."

This verse puzzled the woman and they wondered what this statement means about the character and nature of God. One of the woman offered to find out about the process of refining silver and get back to the group at their next Bible study.
That week this woman called up a silversmith and made an appointment to watch him at work. She didn't mention anything about the reason for the interest in silver beyond her curiosity about the process of refining silver. As she watched the siversmith, he held a piece of silver over the fire and let it heat up. He explained that in refining silver, one needed to hold the silver in the middle of the fire where the flames were hottest so as to burn away all the impurities.
The woman thought about God holding us in such a hot spot then she thought again about the verse, "He shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver...". She asked the silversmith if it was true that he had to sit there in front of the fire the whole time the silver was being refined. The man answered yes, he not only had to sit there holding the silver, but he had to keep his eyes on the silver the entire time it was in the fire. For if the silver was left even a moment too long in the flames, it would be destroyed.The woman was silent for a moment.
Then she asked the silversmith "How do you know when the silver is fully refined?" He smiled at her and answered, "Oh that's the easy part, when I see my image reflected in it."

I've read this before, but it's good to read it again. Sitting in the fire hurts, and I think that's where God has had us for a while. I'm ready to be out of it for a while!

The Accuracy of the Old & New Testament

I thought this was a very helpful & concise list of reasons we can trust the Bible's accuracy...
Kiana includes facts about the Old Testament and the New Testament in her analysis.

Kiana is Valette McLay's sister-in-law, and lives in the Wasilla area which is right outside Anchorage. I've known Valette since college- she was the younger sister of a dear friend in our drama team. And though I've never actually met Kiana, I feel like I have since I've heard about her & her husband Marty and prayed for them several times over the last 15 or so years.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Beth's Book

Beth has received the AMAZING LETTER!!!!
The 'We're intrigued by the idea' Letter!!!
Penguin Putnam has requested the first chapters of her book, and we're all a'twitter...
She actually sent her letter off to a bunch of independant publishers first. And we're surprised that it's one of the big guys who responded... A real writer gets turned down TONS of times before anything really happens, so yay! Beth's a 'real' writer.

Please pray for her- pray that the editor will really read it, not just glance.
Pray that the editor will look on it favorably!
Honestly, we want them to LOVE it, but I think we're more interested in God's will being done. I think His Will will involve them loving it- ;)

Babies come out of Belly Buttons

Last night I fell into the rabbit hole of the web and around 1 a.m. found the funniest thing I've read in a long time...
I jumped off Polk's site, and then Dena Dyer's site and found a site called 'Tales From My Tiny Kingdom'. A mom writes of the trials and tribulations of raising three boys. This particular entry is about 'the talk'- you know the one- the birds and bees talk. I laughed so hard, and I was trying not to wake anyone up-
It's not for the faint of heart, but it's an absolutely hysterical discussion involving the opening line, “I think a baby is too big to come out of a belly button,” making googly eyes, and the daddy having 'fertilizer'...
Don't miss it!

Our Business Card

Just for comparison, here's our business card.
Beth & Valette spent HOURS working on it: looking for fonts on line, playing with it and getting it just right.
The weird thing here is all the white around the edge and how pale the writing is- I wanted to enlarge it just a little and that messed up the scanner, I guess. The writing on the card is normally quite neatly centered & dark enough to be legible... I'm not computer illiterate, but after scanning it four times I'm not gonna play with it anymore today!
The ONLY thing we'd probably change at this point is adding the web-site address. Originally, when they designed the card we didn't have the jewelry blog. Since Valette designed it for us and locked it we don't know how to add the website address on the computer. We don't have all the fancy programs she has for designing stuff, so we've been adding it by hand at the bottom- very annoying and time-consuming.
So, while I'm willing to take comments on it, we're pretty happy with it. :) We know it's got a LOT of words on it, but it's got what's important to us.

Advertizing poster 2

Based on a friend's suggestions, (thank you Patrick!) I've made some changes to our poster...
We made the original for our show at Willowcreek Clothing, and I actually don't remember why we ended up creating the poster in Word. Something to do with time, lack of fonts and general stress. Something didn't work right in Publisher and I had to make some changes and I got frustrated... We had to get the posters to her by a specific time and ended up working on it up to the last minute...
So, this time around- no stress, lots of time, plus Beth had found the font we used on our business cards! Yay!
Anyway, here's the poster the way we actually want it to look! So, if you have any suggestions now, I will take them under advisement! I'm actually pretty happy with this now, so I probably won't change it, but I will listen. :)

Monday, December 24, 2007

Latest advertizing

This is our latest poster...
I'm not completely satisfied with it-
Will I ever be? ;) If I was completely satisfied I'd probably be shocked.
And, no, in real life I don't go by Rebecca Emery-Sirevaag, but there are still people up here who will recognize me by that name and I WANT to be recognized...
If you've got any hints to make this poster better, let us know and we'll take it under advisement.

Merry Christmas from the Sirevaags!

Wishing you and yours joy and peace in this special season!
May the light of Christ shine throughout your life this year.

God bless-
Rebecca, Jake, Deborah & Abigail

Sunday, December 23, 2007

A Jog on the Wild Side

There are some wonderful things about living Alaska- the view, the summers, the lack of people- but here's something that's not so wonderful: taking a jog with wolves.

ANCHORAGE, Alaska -- A wolf pack surrounded three joggers and attacked one of their dogs in the latest of a series of bold attacks near Alaska's largest city.
A dog on a chain also was killed Thursday and a spokesman for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game said the same pack may be responsible for both attacks.
The dog in its own yard in Eagle River on Anchorage's north side was killed first Thursday morning.
A few hours later, the second attack occurred less than a mile away as three women and their dogs were running on a well-used stretch of road.
It was so quick, the three friends at first didn't know what was happening.
"They were so quiet. They just came right up on us. They were quick. The dogs had no clue. They didn't smell them or hear them - nothing," Alycia Beiergrohslein told KTVA-TV.
At least seven wolves surrounded the three women and their dogs as they jogged on Artillery Road. The lead wolves came within feet, circling the women as they tried to get away. They were only slightly deterred by pepper spray.
"I was rainbowing my pepper spray, and they fell back a little bit," said Camas Barkemeyer. "But as soon as we would turn our backs to try to go, they would run up on us, and we would turn around and start screaming again, and I would spray my pepper spray.
"We just kept pulling, and they were so big, and they started howling, and they were circling us. And it got us really panicked, and we kept screaming."
Beiergrohslein, Barkemeyer and the third jogger were more than a mile and a half away from their cars. The women had read the warnings about other wolf attacks and kept their dogs on leashes.
As the wolves circled, the women walked backward, screaming to keep the animals away, and trying to keep everyone safe.
"I love my dog with all my heart, but I can't jeopardize my friends. And if that's what they wanted, I didn't know whether to leave him," Beiergrohslein said.
The women held tight to the leashes, and were able to keep the wolves at bay, but not before the pack attacked Barkemeyer's American bulldog, Buddy.
"My dog was attacked by the wolves, three wolves," Barkemeyer said. "He fought his way out as I was pulling."
The women were not physically hurt. Buddy underwent surgery to mend gashes and bites left by the wolves. Barkemeyer said she worries the pack could attack again.
"They were not afraid of us," she said. "And I'm afraid that if I was out here by myself, they would attack me. They were not afraid."
Quoted from The Associated Press, from KTVF TV Anchorage
I love wolves and have used them for some acting things. I've done research on them and find their pack lifestyle fascinating. They are beautiful and amazing animals. However, I have absolutely no interest in meeting any of them face to face.
At the same time, it's part of the package. If you live in Alaska, you're gonna live pretty close to some of the wildlife. We've got moose in our backyard, and on bad snow years wolves attack animals on the outskirts of town.

Saturday, December 22, 2007


This week I've been substitute teaching at a local Christian school. I loved it! Made me realize how much I miss teaching.
I had called Fairhill Christian at the beginning of the school year to see if they had any openings. They did but the details involved (VERY low pay, changing Deborah's schooling, finding & paying for daycare for Abigail) meant I really couldn't even consider the position; however, they asked if I'd be willing to sub. I thought, 'that probably won't work, but why not?'

So, I got called about a month ago to sub for the 7th & 8th grade class for a week. Mom and I worked out the details, and I got to go to school! I admit that 7th & 8th graderes are my least favorite ages to work with, but these kids were great. Hard to call them kids- such an awkward age! They're not really kids, but they're not really young adults or even teenagers.
Mr. Hopkins suggested that I do some drama stuff with them since that's my area of expertise. Most of them enjoyed the games and the others went along without complaining. ;)
We did some grammar, some literature, some Bible, a couple finals, and some hanging out... A math teacher comes in to do their Algebra with them, so I didn't have to do that- Thank God! I've helped kids with their Algebra homework at Huntington & at Chrysalis, but it's pretty much the blind leading the blind... The one thing I'm really good at is catching their basic math mistakes. So, if they can remember the process we generally get to the right answer. There's a wonderful thing in being the teacher and having the answer key! But I didn't have to do that this week.
I was surprised at how sad I was on Friday! As much as I'd missed my girls this week, it was good to be back in a classroom.
Thank you God, for the gift of this week. The kids I got to work with were a blessing. I love teaching, and I hope it's something You allow me to do again. Thank you for my girls! I'm enjoying them more today than I have in a while! :)

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Allergic to Cats

"If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if that thing is cats."

Quoted from Horseradish: Bitter truths you can’t avoid by Lemony Snicket

This is particularly funny to me since I'm terribly, terribly, horribly allergic to cats and I live in a household with three of them...

Plus, because of our living situation and the cat angst in the aforementioned household, my cat has to spend the night in our bedroom. Even though my Ear, Nose, Throat & Allergy doctor has said, "Don't let your cat into your bedroom. Ever." If she doesn't spend the night in our bedroom she ends up with horrible scratches on her face or eyes and then we have to take her to the vet. I don't know which is worse- her physical wounds, or my asthma and colds all winter...

This Week

I'm tired! For many reasons I haven't slept well this last week, and I've not had any time to do fun things... So I haven't checked my email, and I haven't blogged, and I haven't done much beading. I did read a book- 'It' by Stephen King. And I think it made me depressed on top of being sleep-deprived. Probably wouldn't have made me depressed if I hadn't already been sleep-deprived...

Reasons I haven't slept:
Jake's been snoring like a choo-choo train
And Luna's been climbing on me
And my feet haven't stopped moving
And Abigail's been having nightmares
And Deborah's been waking up early and in a bad mood
And I've been feeling bad

Friday, December 07, 2007


It's snowing right now- Big soft flakes. This is Luna's favorite perch... She's sitting on top of the printer and watching the snow fall. When I'm on the computer she loves to be where I am and watching out the window is a bonus! It's warm today- +18.
We've had a very warm winter so far. I admit that I like it, but the weird weather is not good for our plants and plumbing. We've had a low snow year, which means the plants and plumbing don't have the insulation they'll need if it gets colder. Who knows if that'll happen...
The week of Thanksgiving we had temps up to +40, (VERY WEIRD) which means the snow we did have (not much) melted into rivers of water. Then the rivers froze that night and became an ice rink in parking lots and on ski trails. The skiers are having a lousy year- low snow, plus warm temps means hard nasty ice... Which is almost impossible to ski on.
The mushers are having a lousy time, too. The river ice isn't thick enough to safely mush on and the low snow means yucky mushing trails.
Nobody knows exactly why, but there's a small wolf pack active close to Fairbanks. So far, they've only been picking off pets (they've killed & eaten 3 dogs), but that probably won't last. They'll probably move on to kids waiting for school buses... I guess their normal hunting grounds aren't yielding this year and now that they're used to being around town and having easy prey (at least one of the dogs was chained- horrible way to die), they'll probably stay around. So, that's one result of the weird weather.
I love the warmer weather, though. Fuel is so expensive right now, and the warmer weather means we're using less fuel to keep the house warm. Nice side bonus of the warm weather- saving money.
Plus, it's warm! I know you probably think I'm crazy, but +18 is a VERY big difference from -40. That's what we normally have around now. I hate anything below -20. It's painful!
Right now, I'm going to sit with Luna and watch the beautiful snow flakes falling and enjoy the warmth.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

November Books

Life Expectancy by Dean Koontz B+
I love the quirky humor in this one. Delightful and scary, plus a darn good book. Jimmy Tock is born at the same minute as his grandfather dies. But before he can die, his grandfather predicts that there will be five dark, terrible days during his life. The reader is taken on the Tock’s nightmarish ride, but invited to see the good in everything. It’s interesting to me that Koont’ presents a world view similar to my Christian one- that there is terrible evil fighting and rebelling against a great, redeeming good…

Killer Dreams By Iris Johansen C-
Well, this is the second Johansen book I’ve read and I can definitely say I don’t care for her style. Dark, disturbing and I find her characters rather unsympathetic. Bad things kept happening to them and I wasn’t convinced that I really cared… I kept reading it thinking that it would get better and it didn’t.

Innocent in Death by J.D. Robb B
Disturbing little book. I don’t want to give away the answer to this mystery; however, let me say- I’ve been thinking of this one almost every day since I finished it. Yuck. Good book, but the story bothered me a lot.

Dark Moon Defender by Sharon Shinn A+
Aah, yes. Finally a jewel of a book! This is the third in Shinn’s ‘Thirteenth House’ series and brings back all my favorite characters, while furthering one of the group’s stories. Loved it. Loved it. Loved it! Magic, swords, evil vs. good, a little romance. Strong characters, and an interesting world. Very good.

Fall of Knight by Peter David B-
Third in his Arthurian saga. Not as much fun as the others- too much end of the world stuff, and too much stuff denigrating faith and Christianity.

Half Moon Investigations by Eoin Colfer B
Not as good as the Artemis Fowl books. Kind of ‘Encyclopedia Brown marries Veronica Mars and they give birth to the Rug Rats’.

The Door Through Space by Marion Zimmer Bradley B-
This is a reprint of Bradley’s first novel, published in 1961. I admit this is not her best book, but it was a fun read. Kind of pulpy & campy... Takes place on Wolf, which is not Darkover but resembles it in mainly ways- drytowners, ya-men, catmen, red sun, desert, high mountains, chained women, low tech world, hates Earth and all earthlings… Has some themes she will later expand on and explore further (and better) in her Darkover novels… family relationships vs. friend relationships, a main character caught between two worlds, a haunting past.

Finding Laura by Kay Hooper C+
Second read… But it’d been years. I like Hooper’s ideas and characters. However, she believes in reincarnation, which adds a surreal touch to her books. They’re still good, though.

Trollbridge by Jane Yolen & Adam Stemple A
The second in their Rock ‘n Roll YA fantasy series. Fun & silly. This one’s a combo of the twelve dancing princesses and The Three Billy Goats Gruff. A very enjoyable read. (The first one was 'Pay the Piper', a retelling of the 'Pied Piper' tale.)

Cesar’s Way: The Natural, Everyday Guide to Understanding & Correcting Common Dog Problems by Cesar Milan & Melissa Jo Peltier A
Written by ‘The Dog Whisperer’ on National Geographic. We’ve rented some of these from the library to watch while we’re beading. I think he’s amazing. His ability to get dogs to cooperate is astounding, and I think his opinions on dogs in the US are right on the money. He’s convinced that most dog problems are caused by their owners and after watching him work with a lot of very disturbed dogs, I agree. Though Jake & I aren’t planning on getting a dog until we move from our present residence, reading this has prepared me for some of the challenges in being a dog person. Bonus: It’s also helped some in dealing with my type A, strong-willed daughter!

The Artemis Fowl Files by Eoin Colfer A
Interviews with the characters, some silly additions, plus 2 short stories with all my favorite Fowl characters. Yay! Enjoyed these. Love the world that Colfer has created and it was fun to read a couple of the back stories.

Trading in Danger
, Marque and Reprisal and Engaging the Enemy by Elizabeth Moon A+
I love finding a GOOD new series! These are reminiscent of David Weber’s space opera style, but without all the gore. Moon creates a solid believable world, and appealing characters. I’ve enjoyed diving into these books and have had an impossible time putting them down… I’m looking forward to finding the next installment in this series.