Sunday Post Weekly Review & Glimpse into the Future

The Sunday Post


This meme is hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer.

LAST WEEK

This past week was filled wit a lot of physical activity for us: we had some work to do on “our” beach house (where his aunt lives) and then there are always slews of weeds to be removed from the gardens. I also washed all our outdoor furniture and the screen porch which gets really filthy through the winter. When I look at our house it is hard to believe we have lived here since May of 1999. We are just starting to refurbish things that are showing wear or seem dated, or which were given a certain finish for budgetary reasons or because other options were not quite available yet.

More time outside means more audiobook reviews. This past week I reviewed a book in Jill Shalvis’ Lucky Harbor series: ALWAYS ON MY MIND. I borrowed it via the internet library download system in Maine and while the files had issues the system administrators at Overdrive provided amazing service and follow-up. They even contacted me to tell me they had fixed the problem with the files. I was impressed with the degree and speed of service!

I had a fabulous guest with a giveaway this week: Tracy Solheim did a top ten things in the Out of Bounds series character Brody Janik’s locker. Brody’s book is RISKY GAME. I really enjoyed Tracy’s post and the readers’ responses. I really want to read one of these interesting books!

While it is true I have not always read a guest blogger’s book(s), I do have certain requirements for guest posts. The biggest are that the post has to be new, original and exclusive (at least temporarily) to Fangs, Wands and Fairy Dust. Why would you come here to read something on every other book blog?

I participated in a review-only virtual tour for BURN FOR ME that offered a great tourwide giveaway. I have to be careful in choosing tours, but let me say up front, I will not give in to a demand that a review be a good one. I don’t have a rating system because I experience each book differently and it’s not how I think. Note to publishers and publicists: you send the book and then you take your chances. If I schedule and read a book, it is going to get reviewed honestly and usually the scheduled day, I post something new daily and do not have time to read/listen and then not review a book. It is unusual for me to totally wave you off a book because I know I am not the arbiter of all taste and preference. I always write a fair and balanced review and try to find something I like in each one.

Also reviewed was THE NAUGHTY GIRLS’ BOOK CLUB a British book about a British book club. Think of THE JANE AUSTEN BOOK CLUB in England and without Jane Austen’s books.

Then came Friday the Thirteenth and I simply had to look at superstition one more time. It would be bad luck not to, right? This time I look specifically at Fridays and the number 13 and whether there is a future for superstition in society today.

My favorite read this past week was probably THE VIRGIN’S GUIDE TO MISBEHAVING by Jessica Clare. While I had some issues with a previous book in the Bluebonnet series this one really struck a chord with me.

Weird
Sometimes I see a trend in what I read — and I don’t think it’s conscious since I usually read in order of which book I am behind on having read. This past week it was firefighters and baked goods. Both came up in both Jill Shalvis’ ALWAYS ON MY MIND and THE NAUGHTY GIRLS’ BOOK CLUB. One trend that is always big in my reading is the UK — because chick lit and historical romance are often placed in the “Empire.”

GRAPHICS

I was unable to find a picture of a locker room I liked for Tracy Solheim’s post so I painted the jersey in the locker with Photoshop.

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I created a few new icons: trying to reflect on the idea that people like them for identifying genre.

as you can see four of the icons feature peppers. This is an attempt to id how very hot, or not something is. I haven’t quite figured out whether to put a phrase on each like I did on one pepper “More Mild than Wild.” It’s mostly because I haven’t thought of one for each.

Graphically Pondering

It takes me anywhere from 2 hours to forever to source and design a banner for a book. While I am often inspired to do something really cool, I wonder if I should be putting the icons in that space instead. The banner you would see at the top of the page or on the home page for THE NAUGHTY GIRLS’ BOOK CLUB might end up looking something like this with a cover and the descriptive icons instead of a collage:

test banner
In other words, the banners would be standardized.

QUESTION MARKDo you have any suggestion for this or for icons in general?

Would you find this helpful, or boring? Would you not click through to a review if the icons did not indicate a book genre/theme/trope of interest to you?

 

Calendar in a Crystal BallLooking Ahead

 

MONDAY I look at Gayle Callen’s Victorian Romance: REDEMPTION OF THE DUKE

TUESDAY:  I review and audiobook: IT ALL BEGAN IN MONTE CARLO by Elizabeth Adler

WEDNESDAY I take on the Roaring Twenties, Egyptomania and the Occult in Jenn Bennett’s GRIM SHADOWS – lots of new graphics inspired by this one.

THURSDAY:  probably WOMEN’S RIGHTS IN ROMANCE FICTION: We didn’t start the fire, it’s been burning a long time.

FRIDAY I begin my participation in the SOCIAL BLOGGERS GIVEAWAY HOP. Don’t know what I am giving away yet; maybe a gift code maybe a few books. I am leaning towards the code.

SATURDAY: LADY WINDERMERE’S LOVER  Review

SUNDAY: Right here again! and that night it is the TRUE BLOOD PREMIERE

SPECIAL EVENT

MONDAY JUNE 23 Giveaway and Interview with MIRANDA NEVILLE for the release of LADY WINDERMERE’S LOVER

TUESDAY – probably a rant piece on TRUE BLOOD. Not a recap – this season doesn’t merit recaps. Sunday will tell whether I am even going to watch the season as it has devolved so much.