Donna Reads: Reaper’s Legacy (Reapers Motorcycle Club Book 2)

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reapers2In Reaper’s Legacy (Reapers Motorcycle Club Book 2) by Joanna Wylde, we meet Sophie and Ruger. The book opens with Sophie as a teenager dating Ruger’s younger stepbrother, Zach. Sophie ends up a pregnant teen, and her parents turn their backs on her. Ruger has always been there for Sophie, and he’s also been supportive and loving to Sophie’s son, Noah. Flash forward seven years, and Ruger is there for her again when she needs him the most. The only problem is that Ruger is part of the Reapers Motorcycle Club, and Sophie wants nothing to do with the club. She thinks they’ll be a bad influence on her son. She also sees Ruger as a man who isn’t looking for a permanent, long-term relationship.

This is a difficult one to review without giving away too much of the story. I enjoyed it but not quite as much as I did the first book in the series. I liked Ruger a lot. It was obvious to me that he loved Sophie all along. It just took him a long time to admit it. The explanation about one of his tattoos was certainly memorable. OMG. Sophie was harder to like. She needlessly put her son at risk when she didn’t need to, and she kept asking Ruger to bail her out. Noah seemed to be in more danger from things she did than he ever was with the bikers. Sophie was also way too negative about the people who welcomed her and did all they could to help her. She kept thinking they were the “wrong sort” to be hanging around with. Why did she think she was so much better than everyone else? That got tiring after a while. I would have appreciated her dropping her high and mighty attitude sooner.

The plot in this one takes an odd twist towards the end. I thought the story was going in one direction, and it went somewhere else entirely, kind-of out of the blue. It explains why Sophie never stuck with Zach, but it was also a little hard to swallow. I suppose Sophie had to reach the turning point she did so that she would accept the motorcycle club. It also gave her a chance to exact some revenge. I’m not sure I liked the twist, though. It felt like the author had to take her down to an all-time low before she saw the people who were good to her as equals.

 

The Garden Gone Wild

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2016 has become the year I let the garden go, and I kind-of feel bad about that. It wasn’t intentional; it just happened. I finished off my schooling and had plenty of time to devote to the yard. I just didn’t feel like it. Here’s one of my pathetic garden patches.

gardenI started out the season with good intentions, like I always do. I cut the grass regularly, and I watched for the first signs of real growth in the garden. Then I got distracted with just doing nothing. Then I began to focus more on creative writing (outside of the blogging world), and my time seemed to be taken up with the fictional world of characters inside my head who were clamoring to be written about.

Then it got too hot and too dry to bother with the yard. I was glad for the weeks on end of no rain because it meant no grass growth either. The only problem was the garden and the weeds. The darned weeds grow no matter what happens weather-wise. They grew so well this year that they choked out most of the flowers in the gardens.

Some of the flowers gave up altogether, others tried and are still there underneath the overgrowth, and some seemed to thrive despite it all. I noticed when cutting my wildly overgrown back yard last evening (for the first time in a couple of months!) that some of them don’t look all that bad. Others were pathetic.

I let some of it go out of spite. I figured if my (unhelpful) neighbor was going to poison some of the real plants I had planted (some given to me by friends and some gifts from my sons), then I wasn’t going to bother cleaning up the real weeds. I’d let them grow just to annoy him. Since he decided to come onto my property to spray poison in my garden, and he killed plants that I really cared about (and broke my heart) then he could deal with looking at the overgrowth in the entire yard. I’m spiteful that way. I guess that’s a classic case of passive aggressive behavior, huh?

Of course, it seems too late now to cut back the abundance of unwanted greenery. Some of the flowers have begun dying back naturally as August winds down. It won’t be long before it all begins to die a natural/seasonal death on its own. So I’ll procrastinate some more and let nature take its course.

booksI do feel a little remorse for letting my flowers down, but I really enjoyed the heck out of not slaving over the yard for a change. It reminds me a bit of the summer as a teenager at my parents’ house when I lay on the couch all summer long and read books. I remember my mother saying to me late in the season, “I don’t think you went outside once this summer.” Yessss!!!! That was my plan!

So I let the garden go this year, and I do feel bad about it. Just a little bit. Well, I suppose there’s always next year.

Books meme courtesy of Pinterest

Donna Reads: Reaper’s Property 

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I just finished Reaper’s Property by Joanna Wylde.
Marie needs to save her brother Jeff’s life. He’s messed with the wrong people. Stealing $50,000 from a motorcycle club and thinking he could get away with it without paying in some fashion is a clue that Marie’s brother isn’t all that bright. Marie has just gotten away from her abusive husband and is living with her brother as she figures her life out. She ends up getting caught in her brother’s mess and being used for collateral. One of the gang members, an ex-Marine called Horse wants Marie. To save Jeff’s life, Marie becomes Horse’s property. 

This is my first biker romance. I liked that there was an alternating point of view. While it was mostly told from Marie’s POV, we get to see some of Horse’s motivation and some of what goes on behind the scenes with the club.

In reading a number of the reviews on Goodreads, this seems to be the type of book that people either love or hate. What cracks me up is that many who wrote negative reviews missed the point. It’s a romantic FANTASY. It’s not real, people, and the characters are fictional. He’s supposed to be rough, crude and domineering. He’s a biker. He’s not Casper Milktoast, the Accountant. I didn’t take as much offense to his aggressive, rough side as some did because that’s what I was expecting from the character. Marie wasn’t all virginal sweetness either. She’d had a rough upbringing, her family is less than impressive, and her marriage was horrible. 

While I did find her character stupid at times, most romantic heroines are. They do the exact opposite of what they are told to do, and they get into trouble so that the hero can save them. I liked the twist in this story where Marie came to his rescue instead.

I enjoyed this book enough that I read it in one day. I don’t mind my heroes a little rough around the edges. He made more sense to me than those otherworldly (totally unbelievable) heroes (vampire, demon or some other immortal or non-human type lover/romantic lead). Yes, the story is a little racy, but racy is good, and it has the happily ever after that I need in a romance. 

Count me as someone who really liked this book. I’m reading the second installment in the series now. 

Of Heat and Humidity and Sweaty Things

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It’s not a secret that I hate summer. I just do. There are so many things to dislike about it and so few to like. 

I’ll start out with things to like about summer. 

1. It stays light longer. But really who cares? I’m not 10 so I’m not going to be outside playing until the streetlights come on any time soon. I’m also a night owl. I’d rather stay up until 4:00 a.m. and sleep until noon so if it’s lighter longer it’s irrelevant to me. I don’t do too many outdoor activities these days, but even when I was young and fit, I moved workouts indoors once the humidity rose. 

2. There are flowers, and the grass is green. I’ll admit that the flowers are nice to look at, but they also need to be weeded. I’m allergic to many things, nightshade included. You guessed it. I have that weed in my yard. To kill it, the plants die, too. My neighbor wiped out several of my plants this year spraying poison in my yard. If I touch the nightshade I get a poison ivy like reaction with red blisters that last and itch for months. As for the grass, with this year so unbearably hot and dry, I haven’t had to cut it. I’m not complaining. I like brown.

3. There are birds and critters out. This is the ONLY thing I TRULY like about summer. 

The things to dislike about summer are just mind-boggling.

1. I hate the humidity. There’s nothing worse than sweating. Today it’s 70 degrees with 80 percent humidity. You move around, and everything you’re wearing is wet. I work in an office. Some days the air conditioning works better than others. I have two fans running. There’s only so much clothing you can take off in public. Also my flat-ironed smooth hair looks like a ratty frizz ball ten minutes after I do it. 

2. I hate the heat. Until recently it had been in the mid-nineties for over a month. I only went out to walk to and from my car. 

3. I hate the sun. I don’t tan. I burn. And with some of the medications I take, they recommend I stay out of it. 

4. I hate bugs. There are very few “good” bugs. I hate anything that buzzes, flies, crawls or stings. I watched hubby get stung twice by a hornet this week as he got out of his truck to walk to meet me in my car. The hornet was still alive and wriggling on the ground. Let’s just say my car made an excellent bee crusher. 

5. I hate people’s obsessions with their yards. See my comment about my neighbor and his spraying poison above. I prefer the natural look and the birds and the squirrels. The nutbag next door runs outside and claps his hands when a robin lands on his grass. I’m certain he hates me and my weeds and my feeding the birds and squirrels. I don’t care. 

6. I hate the crazy people summer brings outside. Everyone wants to be outside in their yards. I don’t mind the man two houses down who grills out every day. I don’t mind the new neighbors next door who are polite and quiet so far. I have a harder time with the loud, crazy grandmother across the street who yells at the grandkids and her dogs ALL day long. We can’t open windows because her screeching and her dogs barking are all we can hear. She also parades around her yard in either her pajamas or a house dress/muumuu arrangement. My sons have seen her standing at the window wearing just her underwear. Yikes. Put some pants on, lady. 

7. Summer also brings out the pets. We’ve also had issues with wandering dogs. The granny across the street and others are guilty of not abiding by the leash law. I don’t mind dogs. I just don’t want to find one dead in the road. We also have issues with roaming cats, too. They harass the critters at my feeder, and they spray urine in my yard. I’m guessing they can smell my two only indoor cats. I have chased the wanderers away many times. 

I could go on and on about the things I hate about summer. There’s more, but I think you get my gist. I have been a lifelong hater, and I wondered if there was a reason other than I grew up in a house without air conditioning. 

I found an article online that hypothesized that I prefer cold weather because I have “body issues”. It suggested that because summer forces me to expose more skin I must have problems with my shape. I could stand to lose a few pounds, but I can’t hate my body all that much. I’ve decorated it with body art, I wear skin tight stretchy capris or leggings and flashy rock band t-shirts. I’m not exactly trying to hide myself, my skin or my shape. Try again, genius. 

I then went looking for something to back up my theory that because I was born in February (a cold month here) that makes me prefer the cold. I managed to find an article that suggested people born in winter months might live longer. We’re better able to adapt to the stress of the cold. Those born in warmer months are more likely to die of cold-induced heart attacks. Interesting. I will keep my snarky comment to myself on that theory. 

The good thing about any weather extremes is that they are temporary, and things will change. Unless, of course, you believe the global warming alarmists. They think the heat is here to stay. If that’s the case, I’m moving to Antarctica. 

Image courtesy of Pinterest

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