random stuff on my brain

Attention. This is a PSA announcement, please be aware this is not a real blog post. Thank you for listening, you may return to your regular blog reading.

Hey folks, today I just have a bunch of junk rattling around in my brain and it’s too much to fit in Twitter…

One of my pet peeves is when someone says, “Ugh, I have this song stuck in my head! It’s so annoying!” And then they look at you expectantly for you to say, “What song” And then they tell you, or even worse, sing it for you. And 90% of the time then YOU get it stuck in your head! Argh. I would really prefer my friends suffer in silence and not drag me down.

But here on the internet, you can’t stop me! Guess what is stuck in my head?! “That’s How You Know” from Disney’s Enchanted. I watched it TWO WEEKS ago people, and I still hear Amy Adams in my head. One of my tried and true ways of dealing with a song stuck in my head is to listen to it over and over. Don’t ask me how it helps, but somehow it does. So if you’d like to join me, here is the clip.


Secondly I just finished reading Spirit Bound the latest Vampire Academy book by Richelle Mead and OH MY GOD it was awesome! I have been trolling the internets looking for Team Adrian badges, but haven’t found any good ones. Then I messed around is MS Paint for a little while before i remembered my atrocious paint/photoshop/anything creative skills. sigh. I did see this awesome t-shit on Richelle’s blog from one of her recent signings: 

Sorry I am SO OVER Dimitri. I won’t get to spoiler-y here, but I totally gave up hope on him and cannot change my mind back. Plus Adrian is such a fascinating guy! I really really really wish Rose would like him more :( I know you can’t help who you love, but I’m all for her and Adrian! Only one more book in the series left, right?!??!!!

As an even further random aside into what’s going on in my brain – as much as I fall in love with books, characters, and the worlds they live in, a badge for my blog, or maaayyybe a t-shirt is as far as I will go. Getting REAL tattoos like the ones described in the book? (The Guardians in the VA books get one each time they kill a “bad” vampire, and get one for initiation) That is weird and going way too far into taking fiction a BIT too seriously for me.  Besides the VA books, I saw people did that for Phaedre’s marque from the Jacqueline Carey books. I don’t know why, but it just doesn’t sit well with me. I can’t explain where the line should be drawn, like why being a fan of the Yankees and getting their symbol tattooed is ok, or getting your favorite cartoon character as a tatoo, but something from fiction literature that has never been drawn in real life before? Squick. Sorry!


Lastly, what is up with character’s not really swearing in historical romances?! I mean they can say “Zounds!” And “La, sir, I don’t give a fig!” but recently I’ve been seeing, “he uttered an old anglo saxon word.” Or someone says, “some of the best words for sex are from the old anglo saxon language.” Now I totally assume they are referring to the word Fuck. Right? Are there any other swear words that are very anglo saxon?

I love looking up root words and learning about etymology and how wars and culture shifts changed language over time. One of my favorite books for this is Bill Bryson’s The Mother Tongue. I might have to do a bit more digging into this Anglo-Saxon business…

New Release Alert

Not to reinvent the wheel since many other book bloggers do a great job of sharing upcoming releases, but there are few I’ve had my lusty eyes on that I haven’t seem mentioned by anyone else in my google reader. For more visit KB’s Pimpin Cookie Book Covers, what’s on the Book Smugglers’ radar, and KMont’s cover spotlight.

Two new releases that caught my attention actually came from People Magazine’s book review section. My mother in law is awesome and got me a People subscription for Christmas. HER mother in law (hubby’s grandma) gifted my MIL with her own People subscription. This way we can claim “it’s not like I bought it for myself,” while we totally enjoy this guilty pleasure. I adore my in-laws btw ;)


Anywhoosit, the first is Girl in Translation, by Jean Kwok. I love Amy Tan’s books and it sounded similar in some ways…and any stories that have a different cultural feel really interest me as they give me insights into ways of living I know nothing about!

Blurb and pretty cover:

When Kimberly Chang and her mother emigrate from Hong Kong to Brooklyn squalor, she quickly begins a secret double life: exceptional schoolgirl during the day, Chinatown sweatshop worker in the evenings. Disguising the more difficult truths of her life—the staggering degree of her poverty, the weight of her family’s future resting on her shoulders, her secret love for a factory boy who shares none of her talent or ambition—Kimberly learns to constantly translate not just her language but herself, back and forth, between the worlds she straddles.
Through Kimberly’s story, author Jean Kwok, who also emigrated from Hong Kong as a young girl, brings to the page the lives of countless immigrants who are caught between the pressure to succeed in America, their duty to their family, and their own personal desires, exposing a world we rarely hear about. Written in an indelible voice that dramatizes the tensions of an immigrant girl growing up between two cultures, surrounded by a language and a world only half understood, Girl in Translation is an unforgettable and classic novel of an American immigrant—a moving tale of hardship and triumph, heartbreak and love, and all that gets lost in translation.


Second is the debut novel from Regis Philbin’s daughter – The Daughters by Joanna Philbin (Released May 1, 2010). I’m not sure how “good” this book will be, I’ve seen mixed reviews, but I am a Regis fan and I’m interested in the subject matter: fictional (but based on obvious experience!) behind the scenes look at what it’s like growing up with a famous parent! As you can tell about the blurb the book follows three girls, but focuses on one, so I believe this is the first of three books about these girls.

Kind of m’eh cover and blurb:

The only daughter of supermodel Katia Summers, witty and thoughtful Lizzie Summers likes to stick to the sidelines.

The sole heir to Metronome Media and daughter of billionaire Karl Jurgensen, outspoken Carina Jurgensen would rather climb mountains than social ladders.

Daughter of chart-topping pop icon Holla Jones, stylish and sensitive Hudson Jones is on the brink of her own music breakthrough.

By the time freshman year begins, unconventional-looking Lizzie Summers has come to expect fawning photographers and adoring fans to surround her gorgeous supermodel mother. But when Lizzie is approached by a fashion photographer that believes she’s “the new face of beauty,” Lizzie surprises herself and her family by becoming the newest Summers woman to capture the media’s spotlight.


Now this next book I found out about through watching Chelsea Lately. Dear God do I love her show! So she had this old guy on, I had no idea who he was, but he was a spitfire! Seriously hilarious and very very cool – Jerry Weintraub? I get the feeling I should really know who he is.

So anyhow his appearance on the show was the best marketing/advertising for me personally! So I’m excited to read When I Stop Talking, You’ll Know I’m Dead by Jerry Weintraub (released April 7, 2010).

Old man cover and blurb:

Here is the story of Jerry Weintraub: the self-made, Brooklyn-born, Bronx-raised impresario, Hollywood producer, legendary deal maker, and friend of politicians and stars. No matter where nature has placed him–the club rooms of Brooklyn, the Mafia dives of New York’s Lower East Side, the wilds of Alaska, or the hills of Hollywood–he has found a way to put on a show and sell tickets at the door. “All life was a theater and I wanted to put it up on a stage,” he writes. “I wanted to set the world under a marquee that read: ‘Jerry Weintraub Presents.'”

In WHEN I STOP TALKING, YOU’LL KNOW I’M DEAD, we follow Weintraub from his first great success at age twenty-six with Elvis Presley, whom he took on the road with the help of Colonel Tom Parker; to the immortal days with Sinatra and Rat Pack glory; to his crowning hits as a movie producer, starting with Robert Altman and Nashville, continuing with Oh, God!, The Karate Kid movies, and Diner, among others, and summiting with Steven Soderbergh and Ocean’s Eleven, Twelve, and Thirteen.

Along the way, we’ll watch as Jerry moves from the poker tables of Palm Springs (the games went on for days), to the power rooms of Hollywood, to the halls of the White House, to Red Square in Moscow and the Great Palace in Beijing-all the while counseling potentates, poets, and kings, with clients and confidants like George Clooney, Bruce Willis, George H. W. Bush, Armand Hammer, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, Bob Dylan, Led Zeppelin, John Denver, Bobby Fischer . . .well, the list goes on forever.

And of course, the story is not yet over . . .as the old-timers say, “The best is yet to come.”


And last but not least The Carrie Dairies by Candace Bushnell (released April 27, 2010). I don’t know where I first saw this, and I’ve NEVER read anything by Candace Bushnell, but am obvi a huge SATC fan! And I’ve often wondered, what was Carrie like when she was younger? On the show they never talk about their parents, we only saw Miranda’s when her mom died, and Charlotte’s was a faceless nameless man in a tuxedo who walked her down the aisle, but no other scenes or references were made to their “before” lives.

Trompe l’oeil sort of trying too hard cover and blurb:

Before Sex and the City, Carrie Bradshaw was a small-town girl who knew she wanted more. She’s ready for real life to start, but first she must navigate her senior year of high school. Up until now, Carrie and her friends have been inseparable. Then Sebastian Kydd comes into the picture, and a friend’s betrayal makes her question everything.

With an unforgettable cast of characters, The Carrie Diaries is the story of how a regular girl learns to think for herself and evolves into a sharp, insightful writer. Readers will learn about her family background, how she found her writing voice, and the indelible impression her early friendships and relationships left on her. Through adventures both audacious and poignant, we’ll see what brings Carrie to her beloved New York City, where her new life begins.

Fun consolation prizes for everyone! And blogiversary winner

Since not everyone could win the giftcard up for grabs on my blogiversary post this week I thought I’d share something fun that EVERYONE can enjoy – bookish trivia and time wasting games online!

I know I know, I’m too generous. Just call it my noblesse oblige and good deed for the day to share these with you:

Hubby introduced me to the wonder that is www.sporcle.com/ have y’all seen their games before? He aced all the geography ones (he’s been working on a case for Eastern Europe so he knows all those tricky countries and capitals, even flags! which I fail miserably) but I loved the literature ones, of course! I would suggest:

Name Books By Their Covers (i didn’t have the same version of a few of these, but there were a few context clues)

Children’s Books by Their Covers

Opening Lines (oof i missed a lot of these)

Ok I won’t list them all, but there are also a ton of fun Harry Potter and Shakespeare ones! So you’re welcome! Enjoy your consolation prize of wasting time online.

Now without further ado, random.org generated the comment number of our winner, and it’s commenter #25 which is


Congrats lady! Contact me at lustyreader at gmail .com so I can send that to you!

Happy weekend y’all and thanks for celebrating my blog birthday with me this week.

Opposite day for Haddadi and romance novels

The thing about being a lusty reader is you’ll read anything put in front of you. The back of the newspaper of the guy in front of you, H1N1 pamphlets, the back of coughdrop packages…all these I read on the metro this morning when I finished my book and still had 20 minutes left of my ride. I’ve even stooped to cereal boxes and shampoo bottles before!

So the other day when I was waiting by the door for hubby to come downstairs so we could go out I glanced at the magazines I held in my hands, ready to take out to the recycling. Sports Illustrated isn’t really my cup of tea, but it was open on top and once my eyes started reading the words, my lust ran away with me.

It must have been fate since the first thing I saw was a pop culture grid with athletes weighing in on things like if they’d read New Moon (all four had NOT!) and the last one was, “I think I’m obsessed with…”

This is where it gets interesting (well relevant at least!), Grizzlies Center Hamed Haddadi said he was obsessed with romance novels!!! How randomly awesome is that?! I was so excited about the far reach of my most favorite genre of all to professional male athletes who weren’t afraid to admit it. I started getting fidgety, wishing hubby would hurry up so I could show him this most excellent news.

Then I saw a quote box to the side that further explained:

To Haddadi the element of surprise is the best part of a romance novel. “The never end the way they are supposed to,” he says.

I’m sorry but are you retarded?! That is a serious wtf, ummmm the ONLY consistent thing about romance novels is the end! It goes- I love you, I love you too, happily ever after, the end. Every.Single.Time. This is the MAIN reason I read romance novels. I mean the lusty bits are nice and all ;) but it is the happily ever after that really gets me all tingly and satisfied. Sigh, way to ruin it Haddadi. Yet another person who mouths off about romance novels without knowing the most basic thing about the genre.

Unless it was opposite day for him there is no excuse for that.

Gift ideas for the bibliophile in your life

Granted it was because of my birthday, and winning a contest, but I recently received some GREAT  bookish gifts. Although I am against starting Christmas too early (I’m looking at you – retailers of America) I do ADORE the holiday season, so why not jump on the bandwagon of all other advertisers and give y’all some gift ideas?

#1 The first was a present from one of my best friends, actually she was featured in my birthday post – Emily of the shoe fetish!

Do you prop your book open with one hand when you’re reading? Thumb and pinky inside the pages, three other fingers supporting the spine? Does your pinky get tired of holding open those hundreds of pages until you get closer to the end? Mine does! This is my preferred way of holding the book, usually in my left hand, and usually it gets cold, but its the best way to hold it! Well Emily found this nifty little plastic thing you put on your thumb to hold the book open, its sorta hard to explain, luckily a picture’s worth a thousand words!

in use...see what it looks like not in use?

I don’t know where she got hers, but my google search turned this place up as one of the first links*. I like it, but am still getting used to it.

#2 My bestest bestie who lives in NYC thoughtfully sent me a fabulous bookish stamp for my birthday! She got it from Three Designing Women** and it’s a self inking stamp that says “From The Personal Library Of” in a pretty design. I guess it should go on the inside of the front cover? I thought maybe on the title page, what do you think?

#3 Last, but not least I was lucky enough to win a hand-made bookmark from Laura of I’m Booking It! Thanks so much Laura, it’s gorgeous! Much prettier than the dirty receipts dug out of my purse that I usually use. I even put a cough-drop wrapper in a book last week to hold my place, ugh. So I’m not saying bombard her with gift requests ;) But a pretty bookmark with a special charm would be a great gift for any lusty reader!

So there are a few suggestions to get your mind going…if you already have Christmas on the brain like some of us!

*Not an endorsement!

**Not an endorsement, but I really like it!

Spreading the lusty reading word

Perhaps you remember the amusing fellow who guest posted here when I took my one day of vacation earlier this year? Well when mylittlebecky scratched my back I vowed to scratch hers in return should she ever need me! Although she is probably scratching Chuck’s back while they are on vacation in Montana. [read into that what you will!]

Finally my skills were called upon! Today you may find me guest posting about imagination, rations, emergency plans, Waterworld (God I love that movie) and other fun stuff.

So head on over for your reading pleasure! We will be back to our regular programming tomorrow. I have some rants about 3 recently read books that I am working up the courage to share. Mainly because I don’t have too many nice things to say about them.


Temporary lusty replacement (guest post)

Since my life belongs to my bestest bestie for her wedding weekend I invited a Really F*cking aMazing blogger (in army speak that would be shortened to corresponding acronym Romeo Foxtrot Mike) mylittlebecky to guest blog! [see what i did there? yes i’m clever] Not only did she accept my invitation, but she flattered the heck outta me. No wonder I heart her.

Even though I do NOT heart one of her favorite authors, without further ado, may I present her amazing guest post…


hello. *sweeping arc with right hand* i’m becky, you can find me at my lil’ abode here. today the illustrious lustyreader has asked me to entertain you all while she’s being pretty at a wedding (it’s a skill). i’m flabbergasted she asked me to be her backup singer and i will try to live up to the lustyreader standards. *coughnotlikelycough*

when i first clicked on some chick named lustyreader i was like, “romance?” you see, i don’t like romance. i don’t like squishy things about love and dieing and shit (which is of course what romances are all about you guys). i like the funny and i like messed up. i’m a bad, bad example of a girl. except! i do wear make-up, high heels and i usually smell fantastic. but THEN, shattering my preconceived notions, i found out this blog was abso fab!

i mean who else mentions spanish moss in a blog post? lusty. who can go against the “man” and speak out for the rest of us about the absolute poopiness of the twilight? lusty. who can get songs stuck in my head with her blog titles? lusty can. who can make you jealous of a ride on public transit because of the reading op? lusty! and finally, who can make me interested in possibly reading about love and shit? nobody else but lusty. she is badass. obviously.

now that she’s really gone… *whispers* luuuusty? we can talk about… augusten burroughs! she loves that book, running with scissors? i think? she has an autographed copy. she also said that she has a crush on his french bulldog.

oh, wait. that was me. i love french bulldogs.*

i like books. i’ve always liked books. i know. i am too cool. my first favorite book was “bread and jam for frances.” how can you go wrong with a raccoon (i think) eating bread? you can’t. coming in a close second was alexander and the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.” we’ve all had bad days, it’s good to know i’m not alone. finally, there was “if you give a mouse a cookie.” i’ve tried and tried to explain this concept to the uninitiated, (chuck) but it’s a hard concept to grasp. for your information, in case you don’t know (shocking), chuck is the man i “hang out” with “most all of the time.”

for example we were in the car, listening to the radio, on the way to the pool. “if you give a mouse a cookie,” i said, in witty response to  someone taking advantage. chuck answers with “yeah?” “he’s going to want a glass of milk,” i counter. then chuck says, “so give him some milk!” “but then he’s going to ask for a straw! chuuuuck!” i desperately try to explain. “i just don’t see the problem, mice are pretty small,” chuck will respond generously. “it just never ends. those dirty, dirty, greedy mice,” *sigh* i’ll sadly reply. you know what its like? it’s like pete and repete on the boat and pete falls off and who is left? that’s what it’s like: repeat. except with mice. eating cookies.

when i started reading on my own, i read everything i could get my hands on. my mother was a THE librarian at my school. we always had sacks and stacks of books. literally. this woman will check FIFTY (50!) BOOKS out of the library. i’m not even exaggerating a little. she always read to us every night. all three of us, gathered around, hanging on her every word (i was the middle child, weep for me). i will have children for the sole reason of reading to them every night. i will force them to listen to me until the wee hours because “we’re having fun! tell mommy we’re having fun! this is fun, right?” they’ll be crying. i’ll be doing that whole joker fake smile thing. i’m just kidding i won’t torture my kids. with books.

my favorite book now, you ask? “ender’s game.” it’s by a mormon.** oh, mormons when will you ever steer us wrong? ahem, we’ll have to overlook twilight. anyshoozle, it is awesome! i LOVE this book. seriously. you should go read it right now. you need to branch out. i have read every SINGLE book of OSC (that’s what i like to call orson scott card, we’re tight like that). i even read the one that he wrote about MORMONS! that’s how much i love ender’s game. through this book my world was widened to include sci-fi and fantasy. and rainbows. and standing in the sci-fi section getting checked out by the barnes and noble employee who coincidentally has to re-arrange the books on a shelf near me every three minutes. happens more than you can imagine.

did i tell you about the time i got hit on in the library by a high school student? i swear to skittles that he was like all like, “what hs do you go to? [my rival hs]?” i, of course said, “eew. not in hs.” he smoothly came back with, “oh, when did you graduate? i probably know some of them.” through clenched teeth, i said, “i graduated almost TEN years ago! from [much cooler slash classier] hs!” chuck’s response: “how come i never get hit on in the library?”

in conclusion. i apologize for the general sliding of the high standards of this blog today. i hope nobody was too traumatized by my lack of grammar or spelling or you know, “intelligence.” it was a super, happy fun time to hang out with you all and talk about my love of books. thank you for having me! “say hello to your motha for me.” and to our beloved lusty, may she have the prettiest dress at the wedding! except the bride. not really. unless she really likes the bride then, yes, really. ok, that was awkward

*i also loved magical thinking! tip! start with something written by burroughs that’s NOT horrifying. he’s really a good, funny writer. i promise!
**now, now, let’s not get offended. some of my best friends are mormons. it’s ok if i make fun. it’s with love.

Sweet potato pie and I shut my mouth

Although I’m from Chicago and the hubby is from God’s Country (as he calls his home state of New Jersey) we heart the south and we definitely fist pumped to Song of the South this weekend at our friend’s wedding in Wilmington, North Carolina. And even though we guzzled sweet tea and brought some Cheerwine back to DC with us I still want more things Southern, so I’m looking to add more to my reading diet.

Since I don’t live there and can only travel so often, books are the easiest way to immerse myself in the Southern culture. Doe anyone have any good recommendations for me?

Here are some that I love:

Savannah Blues, by Mary Kay Andrews (check out my shiny-new-fangirl review here)

Carolina Moon, by Nora Roberts

A Time to Kill, by John Grisham

Sullivan’s Island, by Dorathea Benton Frank (I highly, highly recommend it)

North and South, by John Jakes (I never read the rest of the series but this is my fave book out of the 5 of his books I’ve read)

Cold Mountain, by Charles Frazier (must mention the movie is also fab)

And don’t EVEN get me started on the movies, I could watch Sweet Home Alabama and Something To Talk About every day happily.

There are 2387 million more I could list, it’s just something about the southern twang, sassy southern ladies, history, traditional family names, family traditions and pride in general, and pace of life that just sets the romantic tone for me. Just check out my pic from Saturday at the gorgeous church where my friends got married, note the spanish moss!


Famous figures in historical fiction

How do you feel about famous figures in your historical fiction?

And no I don’t mean famous as in Scarlett O’Hara or Mr. Darcy, even though I can quote them and talk about them like they are real people.

I mean like King Charles II, or Abraham Lincoln, or the Duke of Wellington. What happens when they show up in your historical fiction and start interacting with the fictional characters?

In keeping with my post about my tolerance line for paranormal protagonists, I find that I am only comfortable with real-life famously prominent historical characters on stage in my novels up to a point.

 Any regency romance novel will have Prinny in the background somewhere, being fat and making one or two debaucherous remarks to the Heroine. I am fine with that, because that’s just it, he is in the background.

But when the author writes a whole conversation between Abraham Lincoln and the fictional main character of the novel about how Lincoln thinks he’s the best, gives him a medal, gives him a tour of DC, rides with him on the train to Baltimore, etc. it is too much for me.

I see famous historical figures as part of the background, part of the scenery to set the stage of the novel, but they can’t be given too much characterization. It feels fake. I feel sort of affronted that that famous person isn’t being respected and is being “made” to do and say things they didn’t actually do and we KNOW they didn’t since it’s a matter of famous public historical record!!!

Does that make sense? Like I said it can be done right but sometimes it feels wrong to me. Examples ahoy!

     1) On Secret Service,by John Jakes: although this book contained scenes with Lincoln, he followed my rule of being in the background with little or no interaction with the characters, just following high-level actions exactly how historical records portray him as doing.

BUT in the book Jakes does write a few scenes with Allan Pinkerton, head of the first US Detective Agency, and I was fine with that because I really didn’t know anything about Pinkerton, other than the name sounded familiar, so my suspension of disbelief wasn’t jarred at all by his actions or conversations.

     2) Savannah, by John Jakes: In this Jakes novel the mainly story follows a little 12 year old girl named Hattie. As a true “rebel” when she meets General Sherman in the streets of Savannah she kicks him in the shin! Hard! Then he invites to dine with him and they have a HIGHLY PERSONAL conversation about his son who died and how it makes him feel and he gets sort of teary.

That was just too much speculation on his character, it didn’t work for me.

     3) The Prince and Me: yes I mean the Disney film. I reeeeally didn’t like how they just MADE UP THE PRINCE.  Guess what, there IS a frickin REAL prince of Denmark and he his name is NOT Eddie, it’s Frederik, and he did not marry an American girl, and his father is not dying.

I also get annoyed with authors make up these tiny kingdoms in the Alps/Pyrenees/Russia/Persia so their heroine can be a lost princess or the hero a sheik, because for a moment there I doubt myself and think, wait is there REALLY a princess of Montalusia?

And those of you who know me in real life might guess why I think this, but my heart will only belong to one royal family of a tiny, real country: 


Monaco Royal Family: Princess Charlotte and brother Prince Andrea Casiraghi

Especially Princess Charlotte:

I have SUCH A HUGE CRUSH on her

I have SUCH A HUGE CRUSH on her

     4) The Other Boleyn Girl, by Phillipa Gregory: Even though this was CLEARLY a very fictional work for me, it still crossed my boundary line. Although Henry VIII was a background character, it personified Anne too much for my comfort level. Mary I didn’t really know much about, so like Pinkerton above, her scenes, thoughts, and actions didn’t affect me quite as much.

What books or movies marketed as FICTION haven’t portrayed a historical figure well for you?

You gotta be cool, you gotta be calm, you gotta stick together* You gotta be HUMAN

*In case you were wondering, this Des’ree album was the first CD I ever bought. Actually it was one of two but the other one was the Aladdin soundtrack, so I don’t count it.

My suspension of disbelief is wacky, it has an ever changing “tolerance line” that can or cannot be crossed as in: it’s ok with me if the heroine is a witch, but not ok if she’s a werewolf. A hero can be a vampire, but not a Greek god. She can be telepathic, but not an angel and definitely NOT a ghost.

What I think I’m trying to say is my Heroine needs to be HUMAN. Well at least mostly human, her most recognizable characteristics, thought processes and personality traits must be those of a human.

Kate, you're hot, but your being a vampire doens't work for me

Kate, you're hot, but your being a vampire doesn't work for me

Authors have it rough with this “fine line” in paranormals, I would imagine they struggle to keep the humanity in their fantastical characters so we the reader can still connect with them. I think every reader must just have a different point of no return.

Part of my eclectic reading habits include the paranormal, fantasy, and sci-fi genres. Especially ever since I discovered book blogs, these are some of the hottest genres right now, and some of the most recommended titles. We all know vampire books have saturated the market, but they are only one small sub-set of the larger whole.

In an effort to ensure I predict which books that I will LIKE I’ve been thinking really hard about what does and doesn’t work for me and why. When I see recommendations for books where the Heroine is a vampire from the get-go? I stay far away.

For some reason I can deal with a vampire Hero AS LONG AS the author makes it work, in a “believable” scenario where it works out for them to be together. For example, I am totally depending on Charlaine Harris to keep Sookie Stackhouse human but somehow figure out a way for her and Eric to live Happily Ever After. Sounds impossible, but I have hope.

Looking back at some of my previous blog posts I saw the trail leading me to this realization. Every reader is different, has different preferences, which is why the literary world is SO incredibly diverse. So these books are some examples that just don’t work for me:

     Exhibit A) Hundreds of Years to Reform a Rake, Laurie Brown: The heroine travels back in time, meets and falls in love with the hero in the historical past, then they both become ghosts and live happily ever after as GHOSTS. This is a story line I DO NOT WANT. If I had known they would both end up as ghosts I never would have read it. But again, I recognize that in a time travel book it is REALLY difficult to write a good HEA.

     Exhibit B) Fantasy Lover, Sherrilyn Kenyon: In this case, it was the Hero not being human that bothered me. He was a lesser god from Greek mythology and many of the secondary characters and sub plots included other Greek gods and goddesses. I like books that are “re-tellings” of fairy tales or myths, but not when they feature the actual gods themselves. I feel like there is something sacred about fairy tales and myths, that we in present day shouldn’t mess with them or use them.

     Exhibit C) Sort of on the same path, I don’t like when my historical fiction makes up fake princes or princesses when everything else in the book is historically accurate. Fake Dukes and Earls I can deal with. Royalty? Do not want. Something that would be a matter of such importance and historical record that is completely fictional bothers me. Again I have this weird feeling that royalty is something sacred not to be messed with.

     Exhibit D) This is a tired and overused example, but the Vampire Hunter series about Anita Blake by Laurell K. Hamilton. With every additional book Anita becomes less and less human (she had magical powers to begin with) but her humanity disintegrated as her story went on, starting with being marked by the vampire Jean-Claude, getting more magical powers in a menage-a-trois, becoming a lupa with the wereleopards…well this sounds like nonsense so I’ll stop trying to explain.

Are there any paranormal protagonists that just don’t work for you?