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Easter Parade
Easter Parade
DVD ~ Judy Garland
Price: $8.79
36 used & new from $3.07

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie - excellent bonus material., April 12, 2016
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This review is from: Easter Parade (DVD)
Great movie - excellent bonus material. I've been desperately looking for the American Episode on Judy Garland, (By Myself) since I caught it as a rerun years ago. It's such an excellent profile on Garland, but impossible to find. Some reviews said that the DVD was missing the bonus feature, but I decided to take a chance. Perhaps they didn't purchase the two disc special edition, because mine did come with the episode on disc two! This special feature alone is worth it, but the movie itself is delightful and I am extremely happy.

La Isla Women's Full Coverage Extra Strong Level 3 Wirefree Sports Molded Bra Black 40DD
La Isla Women's Full Coverage Extra Strong Level 3 Wirefree Sports Molded Bra Black 40DD
Offered by La Isla Fashion
Price: $44.95
2 used & new from $15.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Great support, but also super unobstrusive, March 11, 2016
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Holds everything in place! Great support, but also super unobstrusive. I forget it's on. True to size, and an overall great bra~

The Thorn Chronicles-Books 1-4: Kissed, Destroyed, Secrets, and Lies
The Thorn Chronicles-Books 1-4: Kissed, Destroyed, Secrets, and Lies
Price: $6.99

5.0 out of 5 stars It's not like anything else you'll find in YA, November 22, 2015
The Thorn Chronicles is such a unique series. It's not like anything else you'll find in YA. Loth seemlessly blends paranormal romance and some really thrilling suspense. Naomi's journey is foremost over the boys and other drama, also a welcome addition to the YA genre. She grows an incredible amount and reading that progression is only enhanced by the more traditional supernatural thrills.

I love boxsets because you can really dive in to a series and not come up for air until you've read the whole thing. I highly recommend diving into the Thorn Chronicles.

Boredom Kills
Boredom Kills
Price: $2.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Real Original!, July 15, 2015
This review is from: Boredom Kills (Kindle Edition)
Is it weird to call what is fundamentally a horror novel where the 'heroine' is a serial killer enjoyable? Because it is. This book is unlike anything else I've read. It maintains the promise of its unique setting with quick paced turns at every chapter. It takes a certain suspension of disbelief to immerse yourself into the story, and also a decided lack of empathy; but once you get there you have a lot of fun. There's nothing predictable about the characters or the love story.

The little details, inconveniences and humor of everyday life support what could otherwise be a very gimmicky plot. The writing isn't burdened with trying to make you like or root for the main character, it flows naturally from the carefully constructed story. You're not going to be bored, and you're definitely not going to be able to put it down.

Kissed (The Thorn Chronicles)
Kissed (The Thorn Chronicles)
Price: $0.99

4.0 out of 5 stars 3.5 Stars - A Compelling Addition to the YA Genre, October 13, 2014
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I'll preface by saying that Kissed is an intriguing, unique and well written foray in YA paranormal thriller romance. For mashing up so many genres, Loth handles it well and overall I'd recommend the book confidently.

Where to begin. The problems with this book confuse me. When reading a cliche or otherwise bad book, the problems are predictable and familiar. But in Kissed, odd writing ticks come out of nowhere. It can make reading it bizarre, but Kissed has many strengths that keep the overall feeling enjoyable and satisfying.
In the first third or so of the book, before any supernatural elements make themselves known, the tension of the cult and Naomi's impending forced marriage is taught and well drawn. It's also drawn out in a completely agonizing way, you feel horrible things oozing forward and you want to yell at Naomi to get the heck out. This is the sign of a properly suspenseful and well written thriller. I suppose tiny supernatural elements are thrown in, like the mysterious Kai who shows up and kisses Naomi at night, but it works relatively well considering how poorly that might have been handled in some other book.
However, soon after Naomi finds herself in Vegas, some authorial - laziness? lack of skill? lack of depth? - starts to show. Lots of new characters are introduced, and while they're sketched in such a way as we don't get confused about who they are again (Divergent), they weirdly all seem to know each other. Naomi finds herself in a huge city where everyone in her tiny circle including her aunt, her Arkansas kissing guy, and some dudes she met on the street, and another major character, know each other. Later on I suppose this makes some sense, as Naomi's family is involved in all this and only she and Ginny didn't know so I guess they were naturally already situated in this scene, but it feels weird when you're reading the book. You never have a sense of what characters know or how much. Everyone seems completely caught up at all times, and this removes reality and character from them. Reactions are interesting character moments and they don't exist in Kissed.
People also react to new information oddly. Every time something is revealed - Naomi's parents did what?? They found a loophole in the legal system?? Puck and Kai are what?? The Master Destroyer is actually who?? - they will first completely under react with an "oh, that makes sense." and then brush it off and try to talk about something else. Which is infuriating when Social Services or the FBI are involved, Naomi doesn't ask any questions and they don't give any answers. They just say "do this" and she does. It feels shady and I was expecting for them to turn out to be fake cops, but they aren't. It just doesn't feel realistic and like a shortcut was taken in the writing.
It also underplays the significance of these twists. Early on, certain moments have real weight because Loth shows us what's happening rather than tells us, as she does later in the book when exposition takes place of good writing. Early on, the cult is both interesting and horrifying, and you want Naomi to run away. And eventually does. The thing is, you also want her to come back and completely take it down. And when (spoiler alert) she does, nothing really happens because it does't feel the same as before. The tension is gone.
The supernatural element is both interesting and oddly hasty. The concept of the Guardians and Destroyers, vaguely biblical entities of either good or bad, and Shades, the same though I guess they get to choose which side they're on?, are compelling in a YA Novel kind of way but aren't embroidered upon much beyond that. I needed more demonstrations of their works. It seems you can kind of zap people with a certain emotion to get them to do what you want, but how that serves humanity when there only seem to be a handful of either side going around escapes me. I needed a peek into the larger world, into other bands of Guardians and Destroyers and how they differ and what they're up to. World building is super important to me and in this case I think it would have served the book well to use it's time this way.
A good chunk of the book is devoted to the love triangle. Thankfully, there isn't a ton of angsting on the part of our heroine over whom she will choose, and honestly calling it a love triangle at all feels kind of weird. Nothing is done to establish Naomi and Kai's love, except the fact that she is enamored of him because of his magic kisses. Which makes sense in it's own way, but it leaves you feeling like she then can't call that love when she learns what he is and needs to re-fall in love with him, the real him. Her and Puck's connection is a little better drawn, although it doesn't feel like ~love~ per se, but a strong bond of friendship and maybe the promise of more. Throughout the book there's also a good amount of possesive language about Naomi from Kai, "who have you been kissing? Have you been kissing MY girl? she belongs to me, etc" and this is another reason he's not super attractive as a romantic lead. He seems to just care for her because her magic kisses give him more juice and he needs that. The development of the beginning of the book is well done, and it made me wish that the love storyline received the same attention.
Some more thoughts while reading the book:
-Ricki is a strange character. Is she Ginny's assistant or some random petulant teenager she hangs around with for some reason? Naomi is 16 but Ricki is written like she's supposed to be the same age, which she couldn't be and also working for a stylist.
-Naomi's adjustment to Vegas is not particularly well paced, she flip alternatively from being the original, repressed and scared version of herself to a more typical, sassy YA heroine. I just wish there was an event or impetus for this change.
-I liked that when Naomi got to Vegas she and Ginny didn't just instantly click. That felt real. However, I would have liked to see more attention paid to that relationship.
The book's ending hinges on a strange decision Naomi is for some reason forced to make. Kai whines that he needs her because of her magic kisses, which doesn't seem like a real, personal connection to me and Puck says "why do you want to do that" which makes sense and Ginny offer the only sane advice, which is that she needs time and back off. Kai stomps off, like a kid, yet Naomi is heartbroken for some reason. Kai has not demonstrated a lot of character and Naomi's love for him feels forced. Her relationship to Puck makes more sense because we've seen it happen. Some other reviewers have remarked that the ending implies she picks Kai, but I thought what it was indicating was that the three of them would go together. It's Puck who says, "Let's Go."
Kissed is a book that draws you in. The beginning is tension and suspense, the rest is supernatural magic and conflict. For all my issues, I'm just representing my thoughts while reading the book, and it isn't a bad book or one you should avoid. I would advise people to read it and decide for themselves, because I can imagine people being split.

Dance in the Moonlight (Dark War Chronicles Book 2)
Dance in the Moonlight (Dark War Chronicles Book 2)
Price: $2.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Stand Alone Book, Better Than The First!, September 26, 2014
Dance in the Moonlight is a well rounded paranormal romance. The paranormal aspect is pretty original. Instead of making the primary paranormal plot revolve around the reveal - 'what?? you're a vampire??!' - the story is centered around the complex politics of the supernatural world. The romance is a main plot point as well, but it doesn't overshadow everything else that's going on - like getting attacked routinely, which is refreshing. Normally in books like these crazy things are happening yet all the author seems to care about is some love triangle that really doesn't seem as important at the moment as, say, getting attacked by vampires.

The supporting characters really make this book. There are a lot of them and they all have their own stuff going on, they aren't just there to bounce off the main characters.

These elements, along with the books humor, make Dance in the Moonlight a fun ride. There's more going on than in the first book, and it's to the book's credit. I would direct people to this book first if they weren't organically interested in the first.

Killing the Kordovas
Killing the Kordovas
Price: $2.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Smart and Funny, Especially if you Suspend Some Disbelief, July 7, 2014
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Killing the Kordovas is such a surprisingly smart book. Its Kardashian proxy hatred is obvious, but the book gets so many other things right - writing, comedy, New York City. Danni and Joe are compellingly real in their petty desires and earnest fears, while still being sparkling and witty protagonists. The author doesn't let them get away with anything resembling Mary Sue, the characters are complexly drawn and accountable for their actions.

Honestly, you have to kind of ignore the whole killing part of the book. Joe and Dani's desire to kill anyone seems a bit of a stretch, because they are made out to be empathetic people. However the way the author works it out is pretty clever and it doesn't ruin the story.

The story flows effortlessly from plot point to plot point, and I honestly didn't know what was coming next. I wish this book had a wider audience, it's so intriguing and unlike anything else. There is obviously some black humor that comes from the whole Killing-the-Kordovas- thing, but it sits right next to real heart and honesty.

This is a book I'd like to force onto people, people who don't have ebook readers or just haven't heard of it. It's a very fun and funny read, probably the most so I've ever read.

In the Light of the Moon (Dark War Chronicles Book 1)
In the Light of the Moon (Dark War Chronicles Book 1)
Price: $0.00

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unique Addition to the Genre, June 29, 2014
While the dialogue and setting could use a little more fleshing out, the story's still operating under a fresh take to the paranormal genre. Kassity is equal parts bad ass and vulnerable, a novelty in most paranormal fiction which usually only allows the romantic interest to by mysterious and powerful. Kassity is definitely both of those things and it keeps you reading.

The side characters, particularly Lucius, are also a big bonus. They help propel the story forward nicely. I also enjoyed Tegan and Coran, both of whom show up in a big way in book 2.

Having read the second book (which follows different people), I can tell you it gets even better! The second book has more humor, and the side characters in In the Light of the Moon are even more plentiful in book 2.

City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments Book 6)
City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments Book 6)
Offered by Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
Price: $10.99

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars ACoHF: AKA, There's A Lot of Kissing in Hell - A Look at the Good & Bad, May 29, 2014
To begin with, this book is 700+ pages long. This is a good starting point, because everything that's good or bad about ACoHF comes from this absurd length. The attention to detail, the endless description. The wonderful character moments! The constant POV switches. New and exciting character, new and less-than-exciting characters. You get the gist.

Ultimately, this book is more a 3 1/2 star book, but I didn't think twi about rounding put o 4. It's an enjoyable end to the series, it's flaws are prominent but don't ruin the fun it creates. ACoHF ends the series on a high note, and that's a nice novelty in YA now that I appreciate.

Here is a list of my NON-SPOILERY thoughts while reading.

Sorry, but ARE WE TO BELIEVE THE ENTIRE SERIES HAPPENED IN 6 MONTHS? Apparently, this is the case. Jace mentions turning 17 in 'a few months,' which is also ridiculous. In my head, they're all 23 year olds, not baby faced, acne scarred kids. Like a slap to the face. I cannot believe some of the complete reversals of character now, knowing that they are supposed to have happened within half a year. Honestly, I was judging them on having aged YEARS though know I realize the book has given me no reason to. But moving on...

If you read my review of the last TMI book, you'll find that I remembered exactly nothing from it after I read it. The events of ACoHF haven't helped, I still don't remember things like Alec and Magnus breaking up, the introduction of the Endarkened, Maureen the vampire, Jace's Heavenly Fire, or any number of Sebastian related plot points. Honestly, my main memory of the last two books is a bit where Simon takes Jace shopping for groceries and he requests tomato soup and a melon or something. That's what I liked out of the last 1000 impenetrable pages of this series.

This aside, it's easy to go into ACoHF with a swiss cheese style memory of the plot, in fact I advise liberal skimming. It's a dense book, with a lot of politics and lore that is nice but in small doses. My favorite part of this series remains the relationships between the characters, in the beginning the fast-changing POV's were fun because people were separated, and it was fun catching up with everyone.

Of these relationships, the satellite characters remain the most interesting. Isabelle and Simon, Alec and Magnus; they're who I had fun following around. While I feel that Clary and Jace are much less boring then they have been, there is something uninspiring in their interaction that makes me wish we were talking about someone else. Not dull, not poorly written; just bland at times.

Clare is very fond of poetic majesty, and stuffs her books full of it. Flowery description, biblical prose - chuck full of it. She makes Clary and Jace saviors not just because of their intentions, but because of their BLOOD. Seb is evil because of HIS blood. This removes responsibility in a weird way, and lowers the impact of everyone's actions. Clary is special, that's why she's the main character. Jace is practically an Angel, that's why he's there. It's something you either go for or don't. Me, I prefer a tad more grey area.

Plot wise, who knows. Sebastian wants world domination I guess, and this seems to involve cooperation with Clary and Jocelyn and Jace, to a lesser extent. Clare, however, explains this using as many words as possible, as she does all things. Were all the various twists and turns and visits to the entirely useless Clave entirely necessary? One thinks not.

There is this endless insistence that Clary and Jace are a lot like Sebastian, which seems entirely random as this...just isn't true? 1) They're not evil, amoral or psychopathic spawns of demon blood. 2), see 1. This insistence seems poetic on Clare's part, like she liked the sound of the phrase "you have a dark heart, Clary" and just never found time to back it up with literally anything.

Clare is a fan of describing things in 3s, as in "He smelled of ___ and ____ and _____." And "the ____ was a vision of ______ and _____ and _____" It's a writing tick that I notice absolutely EVERY TIME.

My favorite bits, aside from the character's interaction, were the little details. There's a bit early on where Jace notes that he's always liked Magnus's apartment because it always looked different. This is a fun, illuminative detail that I could have used more on.

Emma Carstairs, while a nice character, was incredibly boring to read as the book went on. I eventually stopped reading her sections. Maybe this was dumb of me, but I wasn't getting anything out of it. I like her - but I don't care about what happened to her in this book. I was here for her in the beginning - she opens the book, but it really went downhill, readability wise.

For those who won't continue due to spoilers, my takeaway is this = an enjoyable book, thought boring at times. I did skim a lot, but the book is a brick. There's a lot of descriptive language; if that's your thing then you'll be happy. If not, it's easy to skip. The epilogue is both technically satisfying and emotionally empty, save the potential of a few characters. I'm not here for the next series with Emma, sorry about it.

An improvement over the last book, though I would have condensed a LOT.

The characters needed more actual suffering. Clare is unwilling to create actual consequences in her supposedly harsh world. It takes away from the drama. I know everyone was expecting anyone to die at any moment, but I wasn't.

Here begins the MINOR SPOILERS bit of my review - aka, no major plot twists - just for people who don't want to know things like where the characters go, who shows up, etc. No character deaths or lack-there-ofs will be mentioned in this bit.
A large chunk of this book takes place in Hell, basically. Or Edom, a realm of Hell, maybe? In any case, they're in a vaguely hellish place looking for Seb who has some friends. I found this setting uninspiring and somewhat bland, but to each there own...the thing is, this Edom doesn't seem that bad, as basically everyone in their party gets it on in some way or another. Lots of discussions about love and kissing going on in the underworld, it doesn't seem like that bad a place.

If you haven't read TMI's sister series/prequel thing, the Infernal Devices, you'll miss out on what I assume is a lot of nods to the series. Tessa shows up, whoever she is, and does some stuff, but I didn't really get that part. By this point I was doing a lot of skimming of the particulars, so I didn't mind but others might.

When the enter Hell, or Edom, everyone sees what the demon's think they most desire. This is fun to read, even if I still don't understand why it was there other than a kind of fan-fiction like urge on the author's part.

Who is Jia Penhallow? I didn't pay attention. But her name kept showing up anyway.

The incesty side of Seb is a strange thing that keeps popping up, explained only by his complete, demonic inability to act like a human or love or anything.


Jace and Clary had sex, and I was both here for it and kind of not. All through the later bit of the series, the 'oh we were interrupted right before having sex' thing and then the 'can't touch because of heavenly fire' bit got very old. But then, once that's no longer an issue, they get it on, and I was like, OK, I feel like this is being treated as a little too important? I like that Clare included it, because it seems true to the experiences of the characters, it just felt a tad off.

When Seb dies, or however, the demon blood stuff is taken away, and apparently Jonathan remains, and he is just nice Jonathan and whoa so sad. Which makes no sense. It seems like he was merely coated with demon blood, and once someone cleaned him up, he was fine underneath? Clare really likes lyrical symbolism, but it was far too tidy and clean and lacked a certain moral ambiguity.

When they're trying to escape the demon realm and are bargaining with Magnus's dad, he is established by being the evilest of all the evil because he...wait for it, want to take his sons mortality away. Essentially, kill him in return for safe passage. ......I mean, this seems like a pretty low baseline for evil, no? I wasn't impressed, but Clary &co were simply shocked, treating it like the most insane proposition ever.

I think this comes from the fact that Clare wants Shadowhunters to be those who suffer tragically beautiful lives, but doesn't actually want to write anything actually tragic. Tragedy is random, unfair and irreversible, three words not applicable to this series.

Jordan's death felt like a way to get him out of the way. No one seemed to care all that much about it. Maia and her POV bits weren't bad, but I skimmed them all. Fairly unnecessary.

Simon losing his memories seems to have been added for the pure purpose of the scenes of him remembering his old life, which themselves lacked some emotional punches. Simon has grown on me, I love him and would definitely read more about him.

So...the book ends, and no one is scarred from this. Legions of shadowhunters are supposedly dead, but who were they? Not our heroes, so what matters. The dramatic, world ending events have been nullified, and we are left at a wedding, with everyone just fine and really, better for all they've been through. Did I want an unhappy ending? No, I wanted a complex ending.

And that's exactly what you DON'T look for in these books. But you'll be happy if you want some fun bits interspersed amongst a ton of description. ACoHF is a fun book to flip through, in a nod to the first City of books. Fans will get what they want, but little else.

City of Lost Souls (The Mortal Instruments)
City of Lost Souls (The Mortal Instruments)
by Cassandra Clare
Edition: Paperback
71 used & new from $1.14

2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars What Happened in This Book, May 26, 2014
I'm serious, what happened? I have no memory of anything that happened within its pages. I literally cannot remember a single plot point from this book. I know I read it, I know I did. But what happened? Who was in it? Does anyone in the world know?

I read the description. That didn't help. Nothing sounds familiar. I honestly cannot discern it from the last one.

Is this book real? Can anyone prove it exists and is, in fact, a real book? I don't believe.

Someone please just help me what happened in this book that has completely evaporated from my memory.

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