Saturday, August 30, 2014

Doctor Who In Review: Into The Dalek

The second episode of series 8 allows us to get to know the 12th Doctor a bit better, as he goes aboard a space ship with a Dalek that has turned Good?!?

This episode also sees him ask Clara whether or not he's "A good man."

I like what we're seeing with Capaldi's Doctor. He isn't all about making everyone love him. He's not Mr. Nice Guy, though he does like to be polite.

He's still cranky, but he's got some of the best lines ever in Doctor Who.

"She's my carer. She cares, so I don't have to."

That is brilliance!

Clara is still full of piss and vinegar. Which is a whole lot better than her series 7 Impossible Girl self. She finally has a personality. She's spunky and her soon to be love interest, Danny Pink seems like he'll make a great time traveler.

But back to our Dalek, Rusty. It was really fun and quite scary to get inside a Dalek. The antibodies were probably the most frightening thing there, along with the reappearance of Missy towards the end. She's getting to be as obnoxious as that crack in the wall, we saw during Matt's tenure on the TARDIS.

I loved seeing through the Dalek that the Doctor is not perfect. In fact, for being an alien he's quite human in a lot of his feelings, especially those concerning Daleks.

This was definitely a much better episode than the series opener. There's more drama and less comedy, which is really much better when it comes to Doctor Who.

I'm definitely looking forward to the Robin Hood themed next episode

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Goddess Fish Promotions Blurb Blitz & Review: Red, White & Screwed

Red, White and Screwed
by Holly Bush



Political strategist Glenda Nelson is having a meltdown. Her handpicked, very married Congressional candidate was just caught climbing out of the window of the Sleepytown Motel, and her philandering ex-husband seems to have the most to gain from the colossal scandal that follows. As Glenda attempts to salvage the campaign in a hotly contested race, conservative and liberal pundits pounce on the story to further their own agendas.
Glenda’s love life is nonexistent to say the least, that is, until she meets handsome artist Chris Goodrich. Chris’s easy-going, carefree outlook on life couldn’t be more different than the 90-mph crazy train that is Glenda’s, but the more time she spends with him, the more she craves his calming presence, his sexy smile, and his steamy embraces. Is Chris the one to take a chance on?
Between the pressure of full-blown spin control mode, rapidly declining job security, refereeing two teenagers, caring for aging parents, and spending hours on her therapist’s couch trying to get past her ex’s crushing betrayal, Glenda finds love and makes the long trek back to happy.


Excerpt :

Glenda has a surprise meeting with the new man in her life at her daughter Sylvia’s high school art gala.

The doors of the Mansville High School were covered with posters ranging from “Just Say No To Drugs” to a square dance being held Friday night after the football game. After getting directions to the art rooms, I ran down the hallway and burst through the door. The student art gala included a speaker. I smiled at Christopher Goodwich, straightened my skirt and hair, and found a seat. Sylvia was glaring at me.

Art is about beauty,” Goodwich was saying. “But beauty is speculative. What is beautiful to you and what is beautiful to the student beside you may be two different things.”

I settled into one of those seats with the desk attached. My rear end was not cooperating and hung out either one side or the other. Goodwich was a good speaker and I listened intently. He was patient with the kids, and Sylvia’s art teacher was batting her lashes and giggling.

Goodwich would never go for her type, I thought to myself. The overt artsy-craftsy, caftans-are-still-in-style, kind of a woman. And her hair was long. Why doesn’t someone tell women over forty to cut their hair? What kind of woman would Goodwich go for? Meg did say he wasn’t gay. Everyone was clapping. I stood up enthusiastically and took with me the desk still attached to my rump. Sylvia pulled at the seat, and markers went flying. Christopher Goodwich was heading my way.

It’s nice to see you again, Glenda.” Goodwich looked at the desk stuck to my hips. “Can I help?”

The desk plopped off my ass with a thump, and I ran a hand through my hair. “Chris! What a surprise.”



I absolutely adored this book! There are so many reasons too. Shall I count them?

1. The heroine isn't some young 20 something, she's 46 and has two kids from her previous marriage.

2. It is set in Lancaster, PA and there's a lot of reverence to places that I know in the book. Props for using New Stanton, PA briefly as Glenda, Chris and her kids are traveling the turnpike to get to the hospital to see her father.

3. Chris Goodwich is the absolute perfect hero. If you don't adore him, there's something wrong with you.

4. Glenda's kids, Frank and Sylvia are 100% real. They aren't novel perfect kids

5. The politics make the story hilarious and they are so right.

There's more than just these reasons to love this book. Holly writes characters that are real and have real problems. I dare you not to cry when Glenda's father dies and even before that.

You will hate her ex and his new wife too, on general principals.

This was such a great read! Definitely a must for romance readers!

Rating: 5 Stars

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Holly Bush was born in western Pennsylvania to two avid readers. There was not a room in her home that did not hold a full bookcase. Holly has been a marketing consultant to start-up businesses and has done public speaking on the subject.

Holly has been writing all of her life and is a voracious reader of a wide variety of fiction and non-fiction, particularly political and historical works. She writes historical romance set on the American Prairie and in Victorian England, and more recently, Contemporary Romance and Women’s Fiction. She frequently attends writing conferences, and has always been a member of a writer’s group.

Holly is a gardener, a news junkie, has been an active member of her local library board and loves to spend time near the ocean. She is the proud mother of two daughters and the wife of a man more than a few years her junior.

Twitter: @hollybushbooks

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

The Intruders In Review

Will someone please explain this show to me!

I watched it because I thought it would be a great horror show. You know, something creepy and great for dark rooms and bowls of popcorn.

I spent most of my time watching this, wondering what was going on and what exactly was the show about.

That's not what I'd call a good episode.

There was killing. There was a creepy kid. There was a wife that went missing. Oh and there was John Simm.

Seriously, John Simm was the best thing about this hour of programming. However, I'm not sure if he is enough to make me tune in for another hour, especially if I'm going to be as confused as I was this past week.

I want that hour of my life back.

Please tell me I'm not the only person that feels that way. Oh and if you can offer me any explanations of what the hell was going on..I'd appreciate it.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Doctor Who In Review: Deep Breath (minor spoilers)

It seems like forever since we had a full season/series of Doctor Who.

Finally, we have one, and though the episode was far from perfect you can take away a few things from it.

The 12th Doctor is going to be badass.

He isn't your boyfriend. (OK, maybe he can be mine, cos I'm 40, and I don't mind thinking a bloke of 56 is pretty attractive)

Clara has finally gotten herself a personality! It took a half season and two specials for it to happen, but they finally did it, and she's a lot easier to take now. (Which leaves me grumbling that she'll probably leave at Christmas just when I started to like her)

There's an odd bit of comedy going on here too. Some of it works and some of it feels out of place. (Like Strax and The Times). And the sexual tension comes from Madame Vastra and Jenny.

I don't know what Moffat did with these two, but I liked when they were smart characters and suddenly Vastra was channeling Captain Jack. If she had been like that in previous episodes it would have made more sense, but I guess there's a leg humping clause written into New Who.

The episode has a good creepy vibe going on, with our baddies being someone we've seen before, back in David Tennant's era of Who.

The best part of the episode was getting to know Capaldi's Doctor. He's angry and confused and there were a few times when you were waiting for him to drop an "F" bomb. (Cos Capaldi does that so well). He really steals the show, especially as he's coming to terms with his new face.

Overall a pretty great start to 12's run, with a cameo from Eleven which will have fangirls the world over sniffling.

I love Matt, but I didn't really think that scene was necessary.

Which brings me to the question...why was Clara having such difficulty with this version of the Doctor when she'd seen all his other selves?  As much as I hate to give Rose Tyler any credit, she transitioned much better and more believably.

Loved the new title sequence, but hated what they did to the theme song.

I'm looking forward to next week's episode.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Oh Robin, My Robin

I've wanted to say something about Robin Williams all week. It is hard to find the words to express the sadness that I feel that he is no longer among us.

I could talk about how horrible mental illness is...and addiction.

I could talk about suicide.

But that's not what we should remember about Robin Williams.

We should remember his legacy of entertaining us, from Mork from Ork (I grew up with that show) to his recent role as Simon Roberts on The Crazy Ones. Oh CBS I hope you feel some guilt at his death! That show really should have been given a chance.

And then there are the movies.

Robin was truly one of those people that could to drama and comedy and do them both well. When you saw that he was in a movie, you had to go see it. I loved most anything I saw him in, and that includes, Death To Smootchie. That one was a wild ride.

But there are the films that are so brilliant, Dead Poet's Society, Good Will Hunting, Mrs Doubtfire and The Birdcage.

This man could and did play any character.

So rather than remember the way that he died, let us remember what he left us. Hours of smiles and laughs.

Robin, you will be missed.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Album Review: Elvis Costello & The Roots - Wise Up Ghost

Wise Up Ghost is EC with The Roots. I've always liked Fallon's band, but for some reason I was always reluctant to buy this album.

The style of the songs is reminiscent of When I Was Cruel with a touch of The Delivery Man. Its a bit rock and funk and a lot of recycled lyrics.

I've always been a fan of EC and I've loved some of the albums that most can't stand, like Goodbye Cruel World and Mighty Like A Rose.

There's always something I can find to like on a Costello album, however this album is pushing it for me. It does have a few pleasant moments. The title track, is dark, and not quiet sung. It is moody and becomes funkier as it goes on. The lyrics boarder on poetic.  However if the lyrics "She's pulling out the pins" are used once more, I'm going to hunt EC down and hit him upside the head with a CD.

"Walk Us Uptown" is a great album opener. This is one of the tracks that will have you drawing comparisons to When I Was Cruel. It is fun and funky. "Sugar Won't Work" is another one that packs his usual punch.

The song of my heart on this album is "If I Could Believe." For as unpretty as EC's voice is, his ballads are always full of emotion.

Costello is an artist that you can admire for all the styles he's tried and the artists he's collaborated with over the years. This album however isn't one of his more consistent sounding albums. It feels too much like Mr. Costello has become the lead singer of The Roots.

It leaves me wishing that EC would just be himself when he makes his next album, because I'm heartily sick of him trying to be someone else.

3 stars (out of 5)

Listen: If I Could Believe

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Tamale Pie

The original recipe came from the Trax Farm Market cookbook, What Else Is Cookin' On The Farm.

I changed it up and made it so it would serve at least 6, because, yes, I cook for that many people on a daily basis.

I'm going to give you some basic guidelines, because this is a recipe that doesn't really need to be a recipe. If that makes sense.

The fixins for chili
Jiffy Cornbread Mix
Cheese (I like taco blend)


Preheat oven to 350

This is my chili recipe

Brown 1.5 lbs of ground meat with 1/2 cup of onion and 1/2 cup of green pepper. I use the frozen chopped kind because its uniform, and I can never chop that nice.


Add 2 8 oz cans of tomato sauce and season with chili powder and cumin to taste. I use a few tablespoons of each. I usually shake it on in, so I can't give exact amounts.

Spray a 9 x 13 pan with cooking spray and soon in chili

Prepare the cornbread according to package instructions and poor over chili.

Bake 35 - 40 minutes

Sprinkle 1 cup or so of cheese over the top and bake for 5 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Take out of the oven and let sit for 5 minutes before cutting.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Super Book Blast: Betraying Mercy

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Amber will be awarding a $10 gift card to Amazon to a randomly drawn winner via the rafflecopter at the end of this post. Please click the banner to visit other stops on this tour.

Can she be more than a mistress?

With a tarnished reputation, Mercy Lyndhurst expected to become the Earl of Rochford's mistress, not his wife. Immediately abandoned by her husband after their wedding, Mercy transformed herself from commoner to countess, vowing to protect the lands and people her husband was forced to leave.

Over the past six years, William has restored the family fortune all the while tortured by his memories of Mercy…and the dark night he killed a man. When a threat draws him home, William learns just how much has changed—including his wife. While the passion still flares between them, he fears he has wounded her too badly to regain her trust. But as the danger grows they must unite to save the estate…and possibly their marriage.

Now enjoy an excerpt:

Unlike the night six years ago, Gerald opened the door. The old butler looked shockingly unchanged, as dignified and austere as ever, but William had seen the brief flash of surprise in his eyes, and joy.

Here was his childhood nemesis and his old best friend. William blinked, caught in the memories, but this was real. Not everything changed; not everyone had died. He hadn’t left a wife to fend for herself in a strange household.

“Lord William!” Gerald said, then caught himself. “My apologies, sir. Lord Rochford.”

William ducked his head, humbled by the rare show of discomposure. If William had been born of a different class, he could have embraced the man who raised him. “Hello, Gerald.”

An odd light in his eyes, Gerald examined William from scruffy head to scuffed boots. He lifted an eyebrow. “We weren’t expecting you, sir.”

Just like that, William was both chastised and absolved for the years of his absence. “Wrote me off for dead, I’m sure.”

“You’re too strong for that, my lord.”

William sucked in a breath, thinking of his family. They hadn’t been strong, they’d been fragile. He’d failed his entire family, and Mercy worst of all. “Where is the countess?”

“In the breakfast room, but—”

“What? Is she sick?”

Gerald raised his eyebrow, surprised. “No, my lord. She’s…different.”

Different, that was some explanation. And grave danger another. No one wanted to tell him what the hell was going on, so he’d have to see for himself. He probably looked like a wild animal right now, disheveled from travel and feral in his tiredness. He ought to make himself presentable, if he still remembered how, but he had to see that she was safe.

And maybe also how she was different.

His boot struck a discordant note on the floorboard as he entered the breakfast room. He stopped and stared at the picture of domestic elegance, as colorful as a painting and as foreign as a fairy tale.

The words caught in his throat. What’s wrong? Are you hurt? And then, when he had at least ascertained visually her relative safety, Did you think of me every night, as well?

Mercy, the Countess of Rochford, his wife, took a sip of coffee, her gaze glued to the book she held. Her black tresses coiled upward into an elaborate coiffure. A pale gold dress clasped her slim form and a collar of cream pearls graced her neck.

On her finger, the emerald ring he’d given her on that night sparkled innocently. His grandfather had given it to him. A strange gift to a young boy, but he’d hoarded it all the years since his death. Until that night. His one piece of wealth in the world, and he’d given it to her.

She looked every inch the lady. Well, she was one. A countess after all, but in every memory, every fantasy, he had seen the young waif. He had imagined her roaming the shadowed halls, like a ghost, but the woman in front of him was so very physical. Flesh he wanted to touch and blood he longed to heat. Desires so long repressed bubbled to the surface. Her beauty made him harden, but her elegance made his heart hurt.

“Don’t sulk, Owen,” she said, her eyes still on her book. “If you have something to say, then spit it—” When she looked up, her mouth froze in a pink little O that made his body come awake.

She looked at him, then at his clothes. His dingy garb suited a vagrant more than the captain of a ship, much less an earl. Her gaze returned to his face, lingering on the scar across his cheek, a souvenir from his first year at sea.

Well, let her look. She had grown into a beauty, whereas he had always been a monster. Now he looked the part. Would she condemn him right away? Would she tell him to leave? She should—no one knew better than her what he was capable of, and already he was undone.

Her mouth snapped shut and tightened. Anger? Fear? He wasn’t sure he could bear the last, but he wouldn’t have to, because her eyes were cool, like the ocean blackened by night. She wasn’t scared; that was him.

She inclined her head. “My lord.”

Had she fallen into hysterics, he would have known what to do. He could have tried to comfort her or order her to stop. That was all he had seen of marriage, but civility was nowhere inside him.

Yet he found himself straightening and offering a slight bow, the strings of his upbringing propping him into place. “My lady.”

Amber Lin writes edgy romance with damaged hearts, redemptive love, and a steamy ever after. Her debut novel, Giving It Up, received The Romance Review’s Top Pick, Night Owl Top Pick, and 5 Blue Ribbons from Romance Junkies. RT Book Reviews called it “truly extraordinary.” Since then, she has gone on to write erotic, contemporary, and historical romances.

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