Saturday, July 30, 2011

Butchering Tradition

I'm here! I'm here! Those zombies did NOT take kindly to our tendency towards the vampires. Let me tell you, a zombie bent on seduction is NOT a pretty sight! *shudders* Anyway, on to my final topic:

Butchering Tradition

Most of us are raised on fairy tales: wolves are bad, beasts can fall in love, and vampires don't do sunlight. But as authors strive to make themselves stand out from the crowd, the classics get distorted. Wolves start seducing Lil' Red, The Beast has a dungeon full of pesants, and vampires sparkle in the sun!

Are you a purest and become disgusted with any variation from the classics? Or is live and let live more your style?

(Thanks for hanging out with me these last three days!)

Friday, July 29, 2011

Interspecies Dating

Morning again! Yesterday we explored the love of the dead. Now let's hopscotch on over to a related subject, love amongst enemies:
Vampires & Werewolves?
The Marshmallow Man and Miss Green M&M?
Angels and Demons?

It sure does make for an exciting family reunion! Good or Bad?:

Interspecies Dating

The subject is not new and yet seems to get a rise out of the masses every time! Of course Medusa is going to fall in love with a blind hawk-shifter... it's freakin' destiny! I've been holding my breath with Anita and Jean-Claude *ducks the rotten tomatoes* OKAY OKAY! You tell me. What other outrageous couples just plain work the interspecies vibe? Which ones DON'T?

(Tomorrow we will delve into ummm... IDK. Just come back tomorrow!)

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Dead or Decaying?

Morning all! Nothing like starting the day with a strong cup of java and a stomach churning inquisition. How do you prefer your dead?
Cold or Decaying?
Blood-sucking or brain-eating?
Arrogant or Imbecile?

Which brings us to the revolting question of which romantic partner would you prefer:

Vampire vs. Zombie

Now I admit, I have a lot more experience with the fanged dead and that probably contributes to my extreme bias in their favor (puss is NOT hot) BUT I wanna hear your views! Who's hot to trot for rot?! (Sorry, couldn't help myself with that gruesome rhyme.)

Let's get some examples out there! Every one has a vampire in the closet. Who's hiding those sexy zombies?! Somebody give me a clue!!!!!

(Tomorrow we will delve into interspecies dating. Stay tuned...)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Abbott & Costello in the "Computer Age"

My mom sent this to me a few days ago and it was just too funny not to share.  I remember the first time I heard that a computer had Windows (yes, I was completely computer illiterate) andI could not figure out what the hell they were talking about! lol  We've come a long way baby!

If Bud Abbott and Lou Costello were alive today, their infamous sketch, 'Who's on First?' might have turned out something like this:


ABBOTT: Super Duper computer store. Can I help you?

COSTELLO: Thanks I'm setting up an office in my den and I'm thinking about
buying a computer.


COSTELLO: No, the name's Lou.

ABBOTT: Your computer?

COSTELLO: I don't own a computer. I want to buy one.


COSTELLO: I told you, my name's Lou.

ABBOTT: What about Windows?

COSTELLO: Why? Will it get stuffy in here?

ABBOTT: Do you want a computer with Windows?

COSTELLO: I don't know. What will I see when I look at the windows?

ABBOTT: Wallpaper.

COSTELLO: Never mind the windows. I need a computer and software.

ABBOTT: Software for Windows?

COSTELLO: No. On the computer! I need something I can use to write proposals, track expenses and run my business. What do you have?

ABBOTT: Office.

COSTELLO: Yeah, for my office. Can you recommend anything?

ABBOTT: I just did.

COSTELLO: You just did what?

ABBOTT: Recommend something.

COSTELLO: You recommended something?


COSTELLO: For my office?


COSTELLO: OK, what did you recommend for my office?

ABBOTT: Office.

COSTELLO: Yes, for my office!

ABBOTT: I recommend Office with Windows.

COSTELLO: I already have an office with windows! OK, let's just say I'm sitting at my computer and I want to type a proposal. What do I need?


COSTELLO: What word?

ABBOTT: Word in Office.

COSTELLO: The only word in office is office.

ABBOTT: The Word in Office for Windows.

COSTELLO: Which word in office for windows?

ABBOTT: The Word you get when you click the blue 'W'.

COSTELLO: I'm going to click your blue 'w' if you don't start with some straight answers. What about financial bookkeeping? You have anything I can track my money with?

ABBOTT: Money.

COSTELLO: That's right. What do you have?

ABBOTT: Money.

COSTELLO: I need money to track my money?

ABBOTT: It comes bundled with your computer.

COSTELLO: What's bundled with my computer?

ABBOTT: Money.

COSTELLO: Money comes with my computer?

ABBOTT: Yes. No extra charge.

COSTELLO: I get a bundle of money with my computer? How much?

ABBOTT: One copy.

COSTELLO: Isn't it illegal to copy money?

ABBOTT: Microsoft gave us a license to copy Money.

COSTELLO: They can give you a license to copy money?


(A few days later)

ABBOTT: Super Duper computer store. Can I help you?

COSTELLO: How do I turn my computer off?

ABBOTT: Click on 'START'...

Hope this brought you a laugh! Have a great day!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

What Do You Look For In A Blog?

When I first started Tracy's Place I had a few online book friends that came occasionally and said hi, commented on my reviews, gave me encouragement, etc.. Only about a month later I got involved in the DIK hero draft and suddenly I had lots of peeps coming to my blog. Woohoo! Looking back I see that it happened really quickly – sometimes new blogs can go for months and get few visitors. I visit several different blogs that are wonderful – great reviews, nice content, etc. but they hardly get any comments at all. Why is that? IDK – it’s a mystery to me.

The comments on my blog over the years, I’m just positive, are directly related to my blog hopping. If I’m out there being seen and leaving comments then I have more comments on my own blog. But even then, if I have crap on my blog (which I personally don’t think I do, but that’s me. lol), who’s gonna want to come visit?

So I want to get your opinion:

  • Why you visit particular blogs?
  • What does a blog have to have in order to keep your attention? 
  •  If you blog do you think that blog hopping is directly related to visitors on your blog?

Let it all out, don't be shy - inquiring minds want to know. 

Monday, July 25, 2011

Libraries: Face to Face or Technology?

My city libraries recently went from county run to private libraries.  I continue to order books from the county (as I can do that online) and pick them up at a book mobile they have placed in an unincorporated part of the city.

I'm not happy (to say the least) with the privatization and though I didn't actually say I wouldn't go into any of the three of them I had no plans to even check them out.  But then I realized that I needed an audio book.  I went to see Holly and the drive is about 2.5 to 3 hours long and whenever I go I listen to an audio book to pass the time.  I would love to just download one an ipod or mp3 and hook it into my car but my car doesn't have that capability.

So I headed to the local library to check out their selection of audio books.  I found one that I could live with listening to (I'm not usually a fan of the way they're read) and went to check it out after I'd gotten a library card.  What happened when I went to check out my book?  Well, I was directed to a self-serve station that consisted of a flat touch screen where I scanned the bar code on my library card and then told it how many books I had.  I then put my book on the glass (that kind of looks like what they have to scan your groceries at the market) and the system read what my book was.  How did it do that?  No scanner, nothing.  No lights from below - nothing.  My oldest had 3 books and she stacked hers up one on top of the other and the system read exactly which books she had - scanner.  The little sheet with my due date popped out of the mini printer and we walked out.

Besides the freakiness of the scanner - which is still hurting my brain to think about - I have to tell ya, I missed the face to face I used to get with the librarians!  I love talking to them while checking out and of course, talking about books - which I can do for days! It seems that today's society is so into self-serve that we're missing out on the wonderful and incredible social aspect of the library system.  Are we not allowed to talk to each other face to face any longer?  *sigh* I fear that's the way it will be from now on and I have to say, I'm not a fan.

So which would you rather have?  Face to face or the self-serve technology?

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Play by Play Winner!

Thanks to everyone who joined in the fun and voted for their favorite Play-by-Play cover art and for entering the contest to win either a copy of The Perfect Play or a pre-ordered copy of Changing the Game by Jaci Burton.

First the results of the poll:

The Perfect Play: 39 votes or 44.83%
Taking a Shot: 36 votes or 41.38%
Changing the Game: 12 votes or 13.79%
Total Votes: 87 (Thank you again!)

It was a close race between The Perfect Play & Taking a Shot. Poor Changing the Game was left in the dust! LOL

I numbered everyone's entry and used the number randomizer from to pick the lucky winner!

Congratulations To: Entry #14 MicheleKS

Who said: I love all the covers- have a oversized postcard of 'The Perfect Play' by my desk at home. But all three are spectacular.

Michelle, can you please e-mail me at and let me know which book you would like, and provide your full snail mail address & I will (pre)order your book from the Book Depository. Michelle has 72 hours to contact me or a new winner will be chosen.

Just to let you know there will be two more chances to win a copy of The Perfect Play starting tomorrow morning at Book Lovers Inc. when I post a review of Changing the Game + a Giveaway!

Have a great Sunday!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Old Spartacus vs New Spartacus – death match, gladiator style

Hi all! Cassandra Dean here, with an in-depth, vastly scientific look at one of my very favourite shows –  Spartacus.

Airing on the Starz network, Spartacus made quite the splash when it first arrived on our screens. Unfortunately, due to the illness of lead actor Andy Whitfield, the second season was delayed and a prequel took its place. Even more unfortunately, Andy relapsed. While expected to make a full recovery, his relapse necessitated his role being recast. Liam McIntyre was chosen and, in the interest of scientific like pursuits, I felt I should really compare the two lead actors on their, ahem, merits.


Andy Whitfield

Photo source: I'm not sure – somewhere on the internet!

Liam McIntyre

Photo source:

 Spartacus: Blood and Sand (season 1)

A Thracian warrior, foolishly defiant to a Roman officer, is captured and enslaved. Forced to become a gladiator to that Lanista Batiaus, he seeks reunion with his wife and his freedom. The lure of the arena is great, however. Will the warrior, now called Spartacus, win his freedom and his love?

*** SPOILERS – (Please highlight text from here to read) Spartacus and friends, now free of the House of Batiatus, 
seek to bring their rebellion to Rome. Fun times and frivolity ensure along the way. ***

Degree of awesomeness
On a scale of 1 to super cool, Spartacus: Blood and
Sand is fricking phenomenal.

No idea, as it hasn’t aired yet! However, based on Spartacus:
Blood and Sand , it cannot be anything but super awesome.

Review, CassandraStyle
I have not the words for how much I heart this series. SO MUCH. It has blood and guts and half-naked–sometimes even full-naked–men. It has amazing visuals and, more than anything, it has a truly awesome story. It’s almost Shakespearean in its language, creating a rhythm wholly contained within the structures of story, although it did throw me at first to hear all these Aussie accents floating about in Ancient Rome.

As the second season hasn’t yet begun, I shall review Liam McIntyre, as above.
Mm. Super pretty.

Comparing the contenders:
Hot. So very smoking hot: :)
More than this, Andy Whitfield brought an emotional depth to the character that had me rooting for him from the get go. He had a physicality as well as emotional resonance and when he uttered “We kill them all” I got shivers. And he is so very smoking hot.

Very pretty. Am definitely looking forward to the naked scenes :)
I’m very interested to see if Liam can bring the emotional intensity,
sympathy and depth to the role Andy Whitfield did. I’m confident the
casting directors know what they’re doing – going by the visual,
they are amazing!

Inspired Cassandra to…
Write a whole story!

Enslaved popped into my head while watching this awesome series and the rest is history. Almost literally.

Write this post! And, hopefully, another story?

Conclusion – everybody wins!
Seriously, both Andy Whitfield and Liam McIntyre are super hot, in a show that is not afraid to show off A LOT of male flesh, is awesome with the plot and fun times, and the actors can actually ACT. It’s like the triple trifecta right there!

I have serious love for this show and am super pumped for its existence. Without it, who knows if Enslaved would even exist, and that would be a travesty. A TRAVESTY. :)
Cassandra spends a lot of time playing with her website, Twitter and Facebook. Please visit her!
Enslaved is on sale now from Decadent Publishing.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

My Real-Life Hero

Things have been a little crazy lately around my place, and to be honest, I almost forgot I was posting here at DIK, today. Part of why I've been pre-occupied this week is that today is my guy's birthday, and I've been party-planning.

Now, the DIK blog is all about the heroes we love. So, in honor of his birthday, I wanted to dedicate today's post to my favorite, real-life hero: my guy.

Even though this picture is over a year old, it's still one of my favorites, because it says so much about him.

Like Ben Fortune, in Jill Sorenson's Crash Into Me, my guy is an awesome dad. He's there for our kid, whether it's attending or coaching sports activities, playing video games with him, taking him on hikes, or reading him bedtime stories acting out all of the voices.

Like Seth Mortenson, in Richelle Mead's Succubus series, he's an unabashed geek, loving quirky t-shirts (like Yoda, above) and a bit absent-minded when he's focused on whatever he happens to be working on at the time.

Like Jasper, in Elizabeth Hoyt's To Seduce a Sinner, my guy has a sense of humor and is quick with a silly joke.

Like Lord John, in Diana Gabaldon's Lord John Mystery series and the Outlander series, he has a sense of integrity and honor that just blow me away.

Like Dave Malkoff, in Suzanne Brockmann's Troubleshooters series, my guy's intelligence and intensity are belied by a laid back attitude.

But, when it comes down to it, even though he has lots in common with some of my favorite romance novel heroes, my guy is an original, and my only real life hero.

So here's to heroes, ladies, and here's to my guy.

Happy birthday, honey!

Do you have a real-life hero? If you do, which fictional hero does he (or she) remind you of? If you don't which fictional hero has qualities that you would like to find in someone?

Come on back tomorrow and visit me here at the island.
Also, be sure to visit me at my place, Renee's Book Addiction.

Whatcha Reading?

Tori & I are just kicking back and relaxing for our last day on the island. (Tori's mother is exhausted and it's only Wednesday). Since the gray matter isn't functioning very well I abandoned the original post idea and have adopted something mundane.. lol

I'm currently reading an imaginative little paranormal novella called Tainted Blood by Stacey Kennedy. I'll be reviewing it at Book Lovers Inc. on Friday!

And, next I'm starting Changing the Game (can't wait). I'll have a review of Jaci's book posted on Monday and there will be two more chances to win The Perfect Play!

Don't forget you can Vote in the poll for your favorite Play-by-Play cover art and comment on yesterday's post for a chance to win one of Jaci's books until Midnight Saturday! Thanks so much for all the support and votes thus far, it's been great fun!

What are you reading? Anything good?

Have a good rest of the week and weekend everyone, I'll announce the winner from the giveaway posted yesterday on Sunday! ;)

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Vote For Your Favorite Play by Play Cover Art + Win A Book!!...

I had coffee with my friend Mary G. recently and neither of us are huge cover art junkies but we got to talking about Jaci Burton's Play by Play sports series and the drool worthy cover art Berkley Publishing has created for the first 3 books.

Case in point:

Now Available
The Perfect Play

Available August 2, 2011
Changing the Game

Available March 6, 2012
Taking a Shot

Mary and I are dayum sure that there are folks out there who purchased The Perfect Play and will purchase the next two books in the series just for the HOT cover art. Thing is, the story between the covers of Book I was awesome & I know the next two will be too.

I met Jaci Burton at the RWA Literacy Autographing in NYC this year, and like her books---she rocks! :)

So, want to have some fun??? What do you folks think? Is Jaci Burton's Play by Play series-totally, um delectable? Yes/No? If the answer is yes do you have a favorite of the three?

Vote in the poll in right sidebar for your favorite cover & for a chance to win (see Giveaway info below)!.. ;) You don't have to enter the contest to vote for your favorite cover but you must vote to be entered. ;)

Any other hawt cover art to share?


Contest Closed - Winner to be announced soon.

Cheers! Tori & I will see you tomorrow when we will be talking about...well something dayum, I need a drink! lol :-)

Monday, July 18, 2011

Books That Scream "READ ME" From The TBR Alps...

Hi all, Tori & I are enjoying a mid summer escape here on the island from Toronto hellish heat and humidity (grumble, grumble). Anyway, on our way over on the DIK jet, I got to thinking about the thing that us bloggers lament about constantly, the TBR pile. More specifically I have books languishing in the Alps and on my e-reader that have been literally screaming READ ME-READ ME lately!

It's a sorry state of affairs I'll tell you. Chris always says she 'eyes her TBR suspiciously' which I can certainly relate to. However, mine terrifies me! Especially with the cacophony of screaming voices echoing from the Alps as I call the stacks.

Since our eldest son mainly lives away from home these days, I have commandeered his room as my makeshift office. Every day I walk in and the same books stare at me from the shelves looking rather woebegone, screaming to be read.

Some examples are Damage Control by Amy J. Fetzer. This book was a recommended read from Amazon that seems to instinctively know I can't resist a good romantic suspense. Of course, I had to follow-up on the rec, and it has been awaiting my attention anxiously now for some months (the book was published a year ago).

The next screamer is Tempt Me Tonight by Toni Blake, which was published in *gulp* 2007. Now I don't think I've had this book hounding me for 5 years but it has been hanging around nipping at my heels since at least late 2008 or early 2009. *hangs head in shame*

The next sad soul is Jordan Price's Among The Living, the first books of her PsyCop series. This book and series was recommended to me by Chris and has been literally HOWLING from my e-reader library for at least a year and a half. "I know Chris - I'm pathetic but I will read Ms. Price's story-soon...Honest!" It's either that or the guy on the cover is going to jump out of all that glass and bite me - I'm sure of it!

The last honorable mention (trust me there are a litany of others but if I listed them all this post would go on for at least 5 days) is Beyond the Night by Joss Ware. Beyond the Night is Book I of the Envy Chronicles and this is one of the loudest screamers because I've glommed the entire series of 4 books. Yes folks-it's a pitiful state of affairs. *shaking head*

So, what to do?

I started off 2011 with this grandiose plan and instituted a TBR challenge. Well, that lasted oh, about 1 month because I was already failing miserably. Rather then put myself through any further angst concerning the "challenge" I abandoned that plan and now that the end of 2011 is, lets see, 5 months away I'm going to try and at least read one of these books per month until the end of the year.

Doable? Of course!

Likely to happen? *snort*

What about you book glommers out there? Do you have screamers? If so, what do you do about them? Help is needed. lol

Tori and I are enjoying our 3 day stint here at DIK and tomorrow we will be back and will talk about, well...DAYUM.... ;)

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Eye Candy

Every year, creates a comprehensive list of the top fifty male models in the world. This makes for an overwhelming but delicious display of the most beautiful men on this planet. True, I was taught never to judge a book by its cover, but then again: books never had me drooling.

Mark Cox (#21) 
Why I love him: He's classically handsome. With the hard jaw, full lips, and smoldering gaze, this Dutch model can sweep me off my feet any day.

Fun fact: Mark studied at Utrecht and worked as a car dealer before getting bored with the job after two years; eventually he was scouted in Amsterdam. Lucky for us!

Francisco Lachowski (#23)
Why I love him: That face! So innocent, yet so, so divine.

Fun fact: Brazilian-born Francisco may seem totally professional, but he's only been modeling for a year. He was discovered at the age of 18 and fell into the whirlwind model business immediately.

Marlon Teixeira (#16)
Why I love him: He's got the face of a sexy Lothario and the body of a god. Drool drool drooooool.

Fun fact: Marlon is keen on travelling; his dream destinations Indonesia, Maldives, Hawaii, and Australia.

David Agbodji (#7)
Why I love him: Nigerian David is pretty much flawless. Just look at those cheekbones! His exotic looks combined with his lean frame, poreless skin, and dark, intriguing complexion has me growling agape.

Fun fact: He considers himself shy. Aww!

Ollie Edwards (#15)
Why I love him: His eyes could break your heart.

Fun fact: The infamous scar on British Ollie's abdomen was acquired by a very unfortunate slip 'n' slide incident. (If you're faint at heart, cover your eyes): at four years old, he was going down it in his back garden, when he went over a chipped stone, which sliced up his stomach. But when strangers asked him about his scar, he says he was cut open by a Samurai sword. It's much cooler.

Josh Beech (#13)
Why I love him: Josh is the ultimate bad boy. Maybe it's those tattoos, or maybe it's that permanent (and oddly arousing) scowl of his. Regardless, his dangerous looks rank him high internationally, and with good reason.

Fun fact: Be still my beating heart! This one's a band junkie. Lead singer for his rock group, Swish, in fact.

Ben Hill (#5)
Why I love him: Let's give it up for ruggedly handsome and breathtakingly gorgeous, shall we? This guy's the face of Calvin Klein, Jimmy Choo, and Hugo Boss.

Fun fact: American Ben studied to become an industrial electrician, but retired his toolbox after appearing in the always buzzworthy "Abercrombie & Fitch" Quarterly in 2008.

You ladies swooning yet?

For more info on the top 50 (most hunkalicious) male models, as well as some more yummy photos, visit the Top 50 Model Index.

More love!
❤ Stephanie

Friday, July 15, 2011

The Internet Makes My Heart Soar

I'll admit the world wide web isn't the most classiest of places, but there are a few reader-submitted sites such as and that have the greatest pictures and comics. (Yes, I tend to spend hours a day on them... what has my life come to?). They're often powerful, usually funny, and sometimes just pure genius. Hope you enjoy my little favorites collection!

Dear Photograph,
Thank you for everything we had.
Submitted by                                                                                                                       hannalya
Click here to follow a super duper blog

❤ Stephanie
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