Another Friday Five, another Reading Roundup of five more books I've read and recommend. (All links go to Goodreads.)
Hunter, by Robert Bidinotto
If you're fed up with a society where bad guys get excuses made for them while their victims are forgotten, blamed, or made out to be worse than the bad guys, this book is a wonderfully satisfying read. The message isn't real subtle (even if you agree with it), and the attraction between the main characters wasn't very convincing at first, though it did develop to the point where I was really rooting for Annie and Dylan to work things out. But the ending peril and confrontation is a can't-put-down nailbiter which kept me up way too late one night. Full review here
Pride's Children: Purgatory (Pride's Children, Book 1) by Alicia Butcher Earhardt
In the tradition of celebrity potboilers like Jackie Collins's novels, but much more gentle and cerebral. Pride's Children: Purgatory follows a novelist, Kary, living with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, who is retiring and private almost to the point of being neurotic; Andrew, a charismatic Irish actor just hitting the big time; and Bianca, "America's Sweetheart", whose pretty face hides her ruthless ambition. I found this a lovely, engaging book. Full review here
Blackguards: Tales of Assassins, Mercenaries, and Rogues, by various authors
I bought this for the Carol Berg story in it, "Seeds," which was awesome, and I enjoyed a lot of the other stories as well. A few didn't grab me so much, and a couple ended with cliffhangers or, at the least, inconclusive non-endings, so I wasn't wild about that. On the whole, though, a fun collection of fantasy stories about rogues, renegades, thieves, and assassins. Full review here
The Bonehunters, by Steven Erickson
Book 6 in the Malazan Book of the Fallen series. I mostly buy and read indie now, but the Malazan series is one of the few exceptions. Not an easy read, but definitely worthwhile if you like deep, thought-provoking fantasy with incredible characters and worldbuilding and an ethos where honor, nobility (not of birth but of character), selflessness, compassion, sacrifice, and love matter.
Dan's Lame Novel, by Dan Rinnert
If you've ever wondered what goes through a writer's head while they're working on a book, this is it. A lot of them might not admit it, but probably most writers (me included) deal with at least some of this stuff with each book - trying to come up with names, characters who won't do anything, trying to keep track of time in the story and how long it's been since we let our character eat or sleep, weird subplots that try to insert themselves (though I've never had anything quite as weird as carniverous alien fairies), how to end the darned thing. A short read, well-written, good for a couple of hours of funny entertainment.
Today I'm shining the spotlight on Jessica Page, the current featured author in the Paranormal, Fantasy, Dystopia and Romance Readers, Writers and Reviewers group on Goodreads.
The Agency (The Agency Hunger Series #1)
HARPER ANDREWS, is a mind reader who has no idea how or why she is the way she is. After being saved by Agent Reid Doyle from a vampire attack she is introduced to a secret world guarded and protected by the Supernatural Enforcement and Control Agency (SECA). A world where vampires, werewolves and mages are normal and humans are at the bottom of the food chain. Things are not perfect but she finds herself thriving and feeling at home for the first time in her life.
AGENT REID DOYLE, is a vampire who likes his solitude so the last thing he wanted when he saved Harper was to have to spend more time with her. The fact that he's attracted to her is inconvenient and he resents having to be responsible for someone else. Losing another loved one is out of the question and he intends to avoid it at all cost.
Both Harper and Reid can't seem to turn off their attraction for one another and love, sex and blood has a way of complicating things quickly in their world. They need to stay focused and find out who's responsible for the vampire caused human murders with additional internal and external threats working against them. Choices will be made to protect the things and people they love, choices that will change everything, including each other.
Available at: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords
The Unveiling (The Agency Hunger Series #2)
AGENT HARPER ANDREWS had her entire world turned upside-down when she discovered that she was a supernatural being with incredibly rare abilities. Even with a job she loves and the man of dreams at her side, Harper is still once again left feeling alone in the world.
AGENT REID DOYLE wasn't looking for love; fear and the lingering heartbreak of a past love but decided he'd rather live a life with her and he would die protecting her if needed. With his former friend and now foe back in the picture and continuously one step ahead of them, the SECA team must work against the clock to find him before his madness is felt worldwide.
The fine lines of love, loyalty and greed are easily blurred in a world ruled by supernaturals and the violent ripples of havoc are far-reaching. With surprises and twists unveiled at every turn, will they be able to succeed? Or will something much more sinister emerge and destroy them all?
Available at: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords
After meeting Senator James Clarke and his close friend, madam Dominique Bourdeaux, Kendall Daley starts a new life as an escort known only as Raina. After seven years in the business, she has one final escort event to get through before moving onto the next phase and career of her life.
Kane Clarke is a thirty-five year old Navy Seals Senior Chief Petty Officer on an encouraged leave, visiting Washington D.C. to meet his estranged brother.
Their lives connect after a fluke meeting in a bar one night, but neither of them realizes at the time that they share a connection which will change everything. The pair is thrown into a wild ride of mystery and danger, trying to figure out why James has been taken and why Kendall has been targeted.
Will they figure it out in time? Or will their lives, love and luck run out?
Available at Amazon
About the author:
I'm an avid reader (and dreamer) who hails from northern Ontario Canada where I live with my husband, son, and fur babies. I hope my stories provide you with an escape and some entertainment for a little while (that's really all I can ask for).
Where to find Jessica Page:
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads
It's been a while since I've done a Tasty Tuesday post, or any other post for that matter. I was away all last week at a family reunion in Park City, Utah. My parents like to go there for a week or so every summer, and last year they informed all of us kids and grandkids that this year we were all coming too. It was fun, though I mostly stayed busy helping with my 3-year-old and 2-month-old granddaughters to give their daddy and mommy a break. Park City is absolutely gorgeous, and there are lots of fun outdoors things to do. We had yummy family dinners, had a cookout with relatives I haven't seen in years, some as long as 30 years and some I've never met (my parents are both from Utah, so we have a lot of relatives there), some folks went skeet shooting, rode on the ski lifts, and went into Salt Lake City for sightseeing and to hear the Mormon Tabernacle Choir rehearse, and there was a pre-wedding reception for my oldest nephew and his fiancee (who is also from that area). The wedding was the next day, Saturday; unfortunately, we had already booked our flights home first thing that morning months ago, before we knew about the wedding, so we weren't able to go. But the reception was lots of fun.
I'm home now, and recovering and trying to get back into a routine, and found myself craving hummus. I discovered several months ago that I like hummus, but it's hard to find properly made hummus in the stores. The kinds in the stores usually have soybean oil and/or citric acid, when hummus is supposed to be made with olive oil and lemon juice. The thing that was hanging me up from making it myself was I couldn't find tahini, then I realized that tahini is just sesame seeds and olive oil ground together in a paste, so I bought whole toasted sesame seeds and figured I would just blend them in with the rest of the ingredients.
So this morning I dusted off my long-unused food processor and made hummus. And yes, that's my actual hummus I made in the photo. I used this recipe: http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/hummus/ with the following alterations:
*I cut the recipe in half. As written, it makes an awful lot of hummus, and since I'm the only one who eats it at my house, it would go bad before I could possibly eat it all.
*Instead of water, I reserved the liquid from the garbanzo beans and used that.
*I used 1/3 cup toasted sesame seeds and a little extra olive oil in place of the tahini.
*I also added 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin.
The recipes I found talk about making your hummus very smooth and creamy, but I like texture in my foods, so I didn't bother with peeling the garbanzo beans (!) or worry about the unground-up sesame seeds.
After mixing, taste the hummus to test the seasoning. I ended up adding a little more salt, lemon juice, and cumin.
I like hummus with Crunchmaster Multi-Seed crackers, but I didn't have any today, so I tried some with some water crackers left over from Christmas (the thing to have with our Christmas brie) and some other multi-grain crackers. It tastes best with crackers that don't have a strong flavor of their own.
As far as how long this will keep, my experience with storing things made with cooked beans says a few days, or maybe almost a week. Not very long. So enjoy it while it lasts!
Finally, I have some different exciting things I've been sitting on, not ready to talk about them publicly yet, but watch for some cool stuff coming up in the next few months!
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