Best Book Boyfriends of 2012

December 30, 2012 at 12:32 am (The Whim) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )


I avidly read The Lit Bitch and a recent post included a top 12 book boyfriends list:

Cute concept, fun blog idea, but as I scrolled through my 74 books of the year, I realized that I didn’t read a lot of books in which there were boyfriends to pick from.

I started out with How to Buy a Love of Reading, and I think Hunter set me into a mood that I just couldn’t get past.  There are other boyfriends I read through the year, but I barely remember them.

I don’t recall the characters in The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton.  Regardless of what I thought of the book when I read it, no one in it made a lasting impact on me.  I actually had to refer to my own review to remember Seldon’s name.

The Great Gatsby is a fantastic novel, one of my favorites, but Jay Gatsby is not someone I’d put on my list of literary love interests.

jace_wayland_by_sallysalander-d4wi4bgI did read The Mortal Instruments and Infernal Devices series and there are plenty of boyfriends to be had in those books, and they are lovely, and romantic, and intense; but none of them lived up to Hunter.

I did read Inhale, the first of a series called Just Breathe, which is an urban fantasy erotica piece, but the characters there are what the genre calls for: super sexy, the end.  Don’t get me wrong, sexy is nice, I think my husband is one of the sexiest, but I need more out of a character I’d want to put on a boyfriend of the year list.

RoryRory Williams, for instance, the man who waited, the Roman centurion, one-half of a couple known as The Ponds on Doctor Who… he could go on a boyfriend of the year list.  He’s just heavenly, and wonderful.  But this is about books, not TV shows.

I read a lot of Agatha Christie this year, and she’s all mystery and not a whole lot of romance.  Although a love story emerges here and there, it’s rarely more than a motive or plot device, therefore how can anyone in her books make the list?

On the other hand, I read cozy mysteries too.  I like Cleo Coyle and her coffeehouse series.  Cozy mysteries almost always have a boyfriend, but with there always being a boyfriend, I don’t often get the chance to delight in any of them.  They are there to make the protagonist feel good or bad, have a romantic scene of some sort, and then on to the next guy.  In real life, I’m morally opposed to most of the relationships that pop up in cozy mysteries.  But, I figure it comes with the territory when reading about murderers and investigators.

Scrolling down my list of books read this year, I come to Karleen Koen’s Through a Glass Darkly.  Sorry girls, I can’t recommend Montgeoffrey to anyone.  He is the basis of all Babara’s pain… a ladies man, a cheater, and ultimately also gay.  How many strikes can you add to a relationship before I’m just really tired of the guy?  It makes the heroine incredibly interesting, but I can’t let Montgeoffrey anywhere near my book-boyfriend list.

So it comes down to the fellows in A.S. Byatt’s Possession, the cutie-patootie Sam in Michael Grant’s Gone, and Hunter of HTBALOR.

Byatt’s romances in Possession are powerful and intriguing, Sam Temple in Gone is a cute kid with the potential to be an incredible man when he’s all grown up, but I have to hand it to Hunter – he captured my heart.

Hunter is intelligent, sweet, broody, keeps a journal, and sadly is also an addict.  Reading the conclusions of my own blog post, I find myself in disbelief… what does this say about my taste in men that I want to pick the suicidal one as book-boyfriend of the year?  And that Marius of Les Miserables didn’t even make the short list of final contestants?

Who is on your list?

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Another Cozy Coffee Read

March 9, 2012 at 7:10 pm (Reviews) (, , , , , , , )

Title: Roast Mortem

Author: Cleo Coyle

Publisher:BerkleyPrime Crime

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Length: 350 pages

Buy Roast Mortem
If you haven’t noticed, I’m a sucker for cozy mysteries.  Although I loved them as a child (and had read everything Sherlock Holmes related that I could get my hands on by the time I was ten) I didn’t begin revisiting this passion for whodunits until my post-college years while working as a bookseller at Half Price Books.

Cleo Coyle’s On What Grounds was actually the first of this popular genre I’d ever read and she got me hooked! After discovering her, I dug into the same author team’s Alice Kimberly Haunted Bookshop series and then began branching out to other pleasantly clever authors like Rebecca Kent and Laura Childs.  They are fabulous guilty pleasures, and I love the added feature of some series that provide me with baking tips and recipes.

The ninth in the coffeehouse mystery series, Roast Mortem is the first one that I haven’t waited to find in paperback in a bookstore, I couldn’t wait for my lazy browsing to turn up the next installment after doing a blog post on Holiday Grind a few weeks ago.  I procured this copy in hardback from the public library across the street, but having read it already, still plan purchase at a later date to make my set complete.

I highly recommend this series, although I must admit that this one frustrated me in a way the previous books have not in the number of typos I discovered.  I don’t blame the author, as a writer I am well versed in having moments when your fingers are trying to desperately keep up with your brain resulting in dropped r’s off  “yours” and silly errors like “with” getting typed in place of “would.”  But I would have expected editors from the Berkley Prime Crime crew to discover those and fix them.  At least, I hope that if I get a book published one day, someone has helped me correct my little mishaps before its set before the public eye.

All in all, another fun piece from the Cleo Coyle writing team!

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The Holiday Grind… and its aftermath

January 30, 2012 at 2:27 am (Reviews) (, , , , , , , , , , )

A Typical Holiday Clearance Sign

During the Holidays, I get overwhelmed.  The decorations, the obligations, the cold… it just gets to me.  But after its all said and done, when gift giving, chores, and the extreme traffic isn’t constantly flooding my daily routine, when its ripped away from me and I am denied it, I get a little bit nostalgic for what I previously despised.

Its perfect timing too, because everything is on sale.  You go to your favorite bookstore, what do you find? All the holiday titles are on clearance.  You check out any of your favorite retail items for winter, and it’s all so much more affordable than it was the previous months.

So, it’s the tail end of January and beginning of February that I find myself reading titles like Holiday Grind by Cleo Coyle, and stocking up on Scentsy fragrances like Honey Peared Cider, Comfort & Joy, and Pumpkin Roll before they are replaced by Spring and Summer appropriate smells.

Cleo Coyle’s Coffeehouse Mystery Seriesare short, sweet, and cozy. They are the kind of book I either enjoy in a hot bubble bath, or under a pile of afghan blankets, but either way you must have a hot cup of coffee to enjoy them properly. I can’t wait to get my hands on the next: Roast Mortem.

Honey Peared Cider Scentsy Bar - only available thru Feb.

When reading these books, whether it’s a holiday edition or not, its always best to have some café-like scents warming in your burner – like Baked Apple Pie or Hazelnut Latte, typically available from Scentsy year round; or just your usual suspects for fall and winter – like Pumpkin Marshmallow, Central Park Pralines, or Cozy Fireside, scents often only offered during the Holidays.

Despite the disappointment I have that these latter fragrances won’t be available to me during the Spring and Summer months, there is one thing that consoles me: During the month of February, a good portion of them will be 10% off.  Between a Scentsy sale and clearance holiday books, I’m quite certain that January and February are the best parts of Winter.

Purchase your Scentsy products today at  There’s a party open.

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The Ghost and Mrs. McClure by Alice Kimberly

November 29, 2009 at 8:53 pm (Reviews) (, , , , , , , , , )

The first of the Haunted Bookshop Mystery Series is adorable.  I want to shop Buy the Book (a small bookstore that reminds me of Houston’s Murder By the Book), hug Penelope McClure, and exchange witty dialogue with her resident ghost P.I. Jack Shepard.  Like her Coffee House Mystery Series (written under the name Cleo Coyle), Alice Kimberly’s bookshop murders are fun, endearing, and most importantly, cozy.

Buy it Here!

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