Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Screwdrivered by Alice Clayton

4 Stars
This was just what I needed to make my spirits bright. I was all . . .

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Viv Franklin spends her free time daydreaming of pirates marauding through her underdrawers while reading classics such as Loins of Endearment and The Wolf of Lust Street. When a great aunt Viv hasn’t seen since she was a child passes away and leaves Viv her estate (including stables/horses), Viv takes it as a sign that she is destined to live out her romance novel fantasies. I mean, horses = cowboys, right????

Upon arrival, Viv confirms there is indeed a “cowboy” who takes care of the animals and declares him to be “Beef. To the motherfucking. Cake.” . The description of him, however, was a bit more . . .

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But Viv is oh so horny and can’t manage to turn off the bodice-ripping, heavy breathing, rolling in the hay images that fill her dreams. Especially when the only other available man in site is Clark, the local librarian/pain in the ass member of the historical society who wants to fight her tooth and nail when it comes to any updates to her dilapidated “historical” home. Little does Viv know this librarian has quite a bit more to offer than a stuffy personality and tweed jackets . . .

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Follow along with Viv while she comes to the realization that . . .

“Who wants a Superman when you can have a Clark?”

After reading Wallbanger (which I originally gave 4 Stars, but bumped to 5 because it was a freaking riot and I might actually read it again sometime) I was pretty sure Alice Clayton’s romance novels would be winners for me. Buuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuut I am super cheap and no likey the idea of spending $8 on a book I will read in a couple of hours. Luckily I discovered the horny librarian collection up in the ‘burbs and Screwdrivered was just sitting there waiting for me to grab it up.

Clayton follows the same formula in this book that she did in the first of the series – girl meets boy/girl hates boy/girl friends boy/girl f*&^s boy. If your idea of a good time while reading a romance is non-stop bang sessions, Clayton’s stories probably aren’t for you. Her books have a little more plot, a lot more humor and she makes you wait until nearly the last minute for the big payoff. Speaking as a girl who is squicked out by the sexytimes a majority of the time, I will say Clayton makes it worth the wait. Especially when you think nice boys NEVER do anything naughty . . .

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Me =

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Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Deck the Halls by Edward Lorn

3 Stars
Yep, I’m only giving this 3 Stars. There’s a word for people like me . . .

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Here’s the problem. I hate short stories . . . .

Seriously. Hate. There always seems to be a “filler” story and for me Deck the Halls was that. Right when things got going – BLAM! – it was all over and now I have to wait until next year for the big finish . . .

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Alright. Enough of my whining.

In case you didn’t pick up on it from the rant above, Deck the Halls is #2 in the “War on Christmas” series that Edward Lorn is kind enough to offer up as a gift to his fans the 5 days before Christmas. (Clicky-click HERE for The Naughty List and HERE for Deck the Halls before they disappear) In part two, Santa and his team of reindeer return home to the North Pole battered and bruised after battling The Naughty only to find something has hit the fan . . . .

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In order to save what he loves most, Santa must ask for help from someone you would least expect . . .

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Good lord, Mitchell. Slow your roll! Also, I’m pretty sure you just actively participated in some serious Clark Griswald plagiarism there.

Needless to say, there’s been some tension in the reading room the past couple of days. The gloaty look on Vixen’s face hasn’t helped matters . . .

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Where was I? Oh yes, Santa and someone must join forces to battle a new batch of evil . . . .

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Will they be victorious????? Dun dun dunnnnnnnnn. You’ll have to read to find out.


In case you aren't aware - this story will be FREE for the 5 days leading up to Christmas and then it will go *poof* in the night, much like my dreams of NOT gaining 20 pounds this holiday season. Think I'm a shill for giving my friend a shout out? Well, I only do it on freebies, but just to make sure all my bases are covered . . . .

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Monday, December 21, 2015

David Spade Is Almost Interesting by David Spade

4.5 Stars
Warning to all – this is probably going to be long and rambly and fangirly and a waste of your time.

Let me begin by saying I have had a lifelong love affair with Saturday Night Live. I was lucky to be raised in a good ol’ Catholic family where the motto is “don’t stop have babies until God decides.” That meant the age difference between me and my aunt and youngest uncle created more of a sibling relationship . . . .

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Some of my earliest memories were sleepovers at my Grandparents’ house. Once Grandma and Grandpa hit the hay I was allowed to stay up watching the Not Ready for Prime Time Players and stuff my face with the heavenly pies, subs and Italian beef sammiches churned out by the local Pizza House.

The success of SNL ebbed and flowed during the 80s, but by the time I was old enough to actually start getting the jokes it was in a groove with cast members such as Dana Carvey, Mike Myers, Phil Hartman, Dennis Miller, Jon Lovitz, Jan Hooks, Nora Dunn, Kevin Nealon, Al Franken, etc. As those actors began filtering out and into feature films (as the cycle of SNL fame tends to do), rumors once again started circulating that the show was doomed for failure – and for one season things looked particularly bleak. Those naysayers didn’t know what was about to hit them, though . . . .

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and more specifically . . . .

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Almost Interesting is the SNL story that I have been looking for FOREVER. While Tina Fey and Amy Poehler and Rachel Dratch’s books were all enjoyable, I wanted the inside scoop about SNL and now that I’ve read Spade’s book I’m fairly certain I needed the story surrounding this particular cast.

Every detail my stalkery curious little mind was interested in was covered – from scheduling, to working hours required to get this show to air, to payscale. We’re talking EV.ER.Y.THANG. But the best part had to be the stories behind the invention of unforgettable sketches - many featuring Farley being “amazing” (as the girls from LaLa Land would say) and Spade breaking the fourth wall by laughing his ass off . . . .

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Spade also didn’t shy away from talking about one of the most controversial moments in SNL history . . .

or about the “Hollywood Minute” that created a feud between Eddie Murphy and SNL as a whole . . .

I was happy to see so much of this book serve as sort of a tribute to the legacy of who Spade nicknamed “Wisconsin Dundee.” The dynamic of their relationship was discussed in detail and stories surrounding some of Farley’s most memorable moments on film were provided . . . .

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Critics might say this is Spade’s attempt to stay in the spotlight of his fallen friend, but to me it was more of a beautiful tribute to someone who was taken much too soon and cannot share these stories himself. As Spade himself says (speaking of a kinship he has with Dave Grohl):

“Both of the guys we were very close to got very famous quickly and then died, and we stuck around to field questions about them for the rest of our lives. It is an honor, but not an easy one sometimes.”

And then rain fell out of my face and I got super angry about it happening.

That’s not to say this book was only about SNL because it wasn’t. Almost Interesting was Spade’s life story from humble beginnings with a deadbeat dad, an overworked mom and his two brothers, to quite possibly the funniest losing-of-the-V-Card story I will ever read:

“She was wearing panties. Back in those days, this meant those serious mega-drawers. Like five inches of fabric on each side and about twenty in the dumper. And speaking of mega” . . . .

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Yep. That happened. And when he finally hit paydirt????

“Kaboom! Feel the rain on your skin . . . song from The Hills.”

I laughed so hard I had to change my supersized underdrawers.

Bottom line is, if you’re a Spade fan, or a Farley fan, or an early 90s SNL fan, or someone who has spent so much time hanging out with Spade and Rock and Sandler and Schneider that you feel like they should send you a Christmas card, this might be the book for you. (Please note back in the 90s we weren’t politically correct and also that the author has made a habit of banging Playboy Playmates. Don’t come crying to me when Spade’s phrasing hurts your feelings.)

I know for a fact it isn’t really “5 Star” type of book, so I’m giving it 4.5 (while rounding up – Thanks Goodreads for your whole star rating system *wink*). There were a couple of chapters that seemed to be there for nothing but to bump the page count and there were LOTS of typographical/grammatical errors (and if I can spot them? They are GLARING). Those things did little to reduce my enjoyment, though, and I read this in one sitting. My friend Deanna picked up the audio version. I don’t do audiobooks and I love Spade so much I heard his voice the entire time and even managed to get his pacing down, but if you aren’t psycho like me the paper version might not go over quite as well.

(And in case you're wondering, this book made me want to have sex with him even more.)


SPADE WROTE A BOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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(Add this to the list of "Celebrities Kelly Might Actually One Day Have Sex With Because No One Else Is Probably Interested In Them" category.)

Friday, December 18, 2015

The Haters by Jesse Andrews

3 Stars

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The Haters is what happens when Wes, Corey and Ash (three teens who do indeed meet at band camp) decide to ditch those zeros and see if they can’t turn themselves into heros – of the music scene.

Wes and Corey have been buds for a long time. The main goal of their friendship? To find the “Unpoisonable Well” – music so good, so pure, so true that it can’t possibly be hated on (and also how many dick jokes they can make). As just a small child Wes thought he had found that groove . . . .

but when he met Wes he was informed that he was waaaaaaaay off the mark. Nothing else ever seemed to be unhatable either. The Beatles, James Brown, Bon Iver, Kanye . . .

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At the end of the day, Wes and Corey would end up with the same reaction . . .

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(You’re welcome, Karly)

After a jam session at band camp with Ash, the two think maybe THEIR SOUND is it. When Ash asks them if they want to leave the camp and go play music, the fellas are in - which makes for the most memorable of road trips . . .

“Here’s the deal. Tonight I headbutted a guy in the face, yesterday I got out on a roof and had to deal with Corey going insane fromd rugs. I’ve also talked down a guy with a shotgun and cut open my hand on diseased highway glass. We’ve all made some sacrifices on this trip.”

Unfortunately, it doesn’t take long for the threesome to figure out that their sound is pretty easy to hate on. Mainly because they are turrrrrrrible . . .

“We were an animal with three different kinds of legs. We were the soundtrack to a mental illness.”

In other words, they were no Duke Silver . . .

but the adventure continued anyway, the kids made some memories, the laughs (and booze and drugs) flowed freely and I was left with the realization that . . .

Mad props to Jesse Andrews for even being brave enough to attempt a sophomore novel after the extraordinary success he had with Me and Earl and the Dying Girl. My enjoyment of this novel compared to the first was purely a byproduct of not being the target demographic. Good news is, I’m pretty sure if I could get my non-book loving teenager to give this one a shot he’d think it was the shizzle for rizzle (kids still say that, right?).

Still, it was a fun time and provided GREAT inspiration for what my commute playlist should be. Many thanks for picking new bands that even this old lady knows which made me feel like “a cool mom, not a regular mom.” (And in case you haven’t ever heard of them, Band of Horses is a group of dudes who sound EXACTLY like Kings of Leon but probably won’t be super pussy crybabies who leave the stage at an OUTDOOR F-ING CONCERT because a pigeon dared to shit on them. #true story)

My friend Larry actually gets credit for putting this on my radar. He hasn’t read Earl yet. Oh Larry, you’ve got something awesome coming your way when you do : )

ARC provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Thank you, NetGalley!

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Unholy Night by Seth Grahame-Smith

5 Stars
"And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, 'Fear not: for behold, I bring unto you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the City of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.' And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God, and saying, 'Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.'" 

Well, slap my ass and call me Sally. This was quite the pleasant surprise. I was well aware of Seth Grahame-Smith’s ability to make something old brand new again after falling in love with his spin on Pride and Prejudice, but to take on the religious right? Oooooooh shit! That’s just asking for a one-way ticket to Antarctica. Imagine my delight when I discovered a tale that was not blasphemous at all. Now, those at Fox News could probably still find PLENTY to bitch about, but they currently HAVE BIGGER PROBLEMS TO DEAL WITH (endless thanks to Arthur *wink*).

This story is pretty much what you might expect it to be . . .

“And when the Great Temple has been rebuilt. When the city of David has been overrun and the ruins of Judea born anew, the Messiah shall appear – born of a virgin in the town of Bethlehem.”

The twist comes in the form of the three wise men – or more specifically ONE wise man named Balthazar . . .

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(You’re welcome)

Balthazar had one M.O. – get the f*&^ outta dodge before his head ended up on the chopping block for being a thieving S.O.B. Unfortunately, a girl, her husband and . . . GOD’S baby (?!?!?!?!?!?!) slowed down his and his compatriots' progress. Balthazar might have a pretty shaky set of morals, but the one thing he can’t abide is baby killing so he GOES. TO WORK. on those suckas!!!!

and things get seriously biblical . . .

Action/adventure novels aren’t typically my idea of a good time. I’m so glad the author’s name convinced me to read this one. Unholy Night kicked ALL of the ass so it earns every Star (even the one in the East). And when certain characters made their first appearances????

“Tell the emperor that Pontius Pilate is here to see him.”

That brought back my catechism learning with a quickness.

Obviously there are no real spoilers when it comes to this tale, but this line:

“Nothing that bright burns for very long.”

Whoa. Even if you’re reading this as pure fiction, some things might happen . . .

STFU, Kourtney and go dry hump Bieber some more!

One final quote before I sign off:

“Kiss your mothers and fathers, your brothers and sisters. Tell them how much you love them, every day. Because every day is the last day. Every light casts a shadow. And only the gods know when the darkness will find us.”

^^^Those are words we all should live by.

Endless thanks to my buddy Ed for having the same kind of warped holiday spirit as me and agreeing to this buddy read. His review is guaranteed to be leaps and bounds better than mine because he’s a wordsmith for a living and I am just good at Google. If you like what he has to say, you should check out HIS UPCOMING RELEASE – available for only five days and for zero dollars (so even if you hate it, you'll still have money to buy booze to get you through the holidays).

Oh, one final weird tidbit. My buddy Ron 2.0 likes to create horrible little earworms as often as possible. Mine is probably not familiar to most, but I was singing the CRAP out of the Jesus Christ Superstar Soundtrack when I was doing housework this week. I'm one classy motherf*c ker ; )


Coming soon to a Goodreads near you - a buddy read by the Ho Ho Hos (a/k/a Easy E, Mitchell and myself) . . . .

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Bob's Burgers: Medium Rare by Loren Bouchard, Adam Beechen, Ben Dickerson, Jeff Drake, Brian Hall, Rachel Hastings, Justin Hook, John McNamee , Mike Olsen, Mark Von Der Heide, Anneliese Waddington, Chad Brewster, Frank Forte, Anthony Aguinaldo (Illustrations), Marcelo Benavides (Illustrations), Tom Connor (Illustrations), Mario D'Anna (Illustrations), Mike Guerena (Illustrations), Joe Healy (Illustrations), Adam Philipps (Illustrations), Hector Reynoso (Illustrations), Tom Riggin (Illustrations), Emiko Sawanobori (Illustrations), Steven Theis (Illustrations), Robin Brigstocke (Illustrations), Bernard Derriman (Illustrations)

4 Stars
By this point hopefully you’re all familiar with the Belcher family – specifically the children . . .

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Luckily they are pretty good at storytelling. Bob’s Burgers: Medium Rare features several tales by each of the kiddos.

Louise’s stories are full of adventure . . .

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(If you didn’t know the correct answer to the above is “a butt” you might not be qualified to read this selection)

and include a trip into a mysterious tunnel discovered in the restaurant’s basement, to a Wonder Wharf ride that may just interrupt the time/space continuum, to the search for ingredients to make the perfect burger of the day . . .

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Gene lets everyone in on his secret double-life, as well as retells a couple of classics like Genederella, and a little story involving a trip through a crazy cat lady’s closet . . . .

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There are even cameos by some superfan faves . . .

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Which brings us to the most famous Belcher of all . . .

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In case you don’t know, I might have a bit of an unhealthy relationship with the eldest Belcher child . . .

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Tina’s erotic friend fictions include Tina utilizing a cloning machine that was invented for the science fair in order to make some back-up dancers for Jimmy Junior, Jungle Tina, Tina Bond and Tinablanca. Each of the above focus on the most important things in life . . .

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Tina Belcher, you’re my hero . . . .

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Even though my kids would say I’m more like Linda – because of . . . .

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I do have to admit as a mother I really appreciated "Linda's Attempt to Take a Nice Family Picture in Front of the Restaurant (and How it Always Goes Wrong)."

The art remained true to the television program and the variant covers were really something to write home about . . .

Especially when they pretty much are example of what your own home does look like.

My friend Brea turned me on to this little beauty sitting on NetGalley as a “Read Now” selection. I’m not much for reading e-versions of comics, but Bob’s Burgers definitely deserved to be an exception to the rule.

ARC provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Thank you, NetGalley!