Friday, June 3, 2011

May 2011 Reads & Meeting Nalini Singh

Nalini Singh's Kiss of Snow U.S. Book Tour
June 2, 2011, New York City

May was a great month for reading, reviewing, bookish things and meetings, as earlier in the month I had a wonderful time while meeting my old friend Indie for the first time. Then yesterday, (I know it's June!) I had the pleasure of meeting Nalini Singh, while she is on her Kiss of Snow U.S. Book Tour, at a Barnes & Noble in New York City. It was a wonderful experience and one that I shared with my friend Mariana of Hips Like Mine. The two of us caught the bus after work, met at the Port Authority and shot over to the venue, arriving a bit late due to heavy traffic.

When we arrived, the chat between Sarah Wendell of Smart Bitches Trashy Books and Ms. Singh was already in progress, but what we caught was both amusing and informative. Ms. Singh kept her audience rapt by giving just enough hints and information about characters, story arc and future books (three, maybe four before the series ends!). She was warm and just lovely. Ms. Singh was also very generous with her time during and after the conversation, especially during the second part of the event when every single lady had the opportunity to sit by Ms. Singh to chat briefly while she autographed each book(s).

I didn't bring my ARC copy of Kiss of Snow (yes, I was kicking myself) so I purchased a copy, plus a print copy of Play of Passion since that's the only book from her series I read in ebook format. She autographed both of them for me while we chatted briefly and she proceeded to surprise me with her incredible memory for names and details -- meanwhile Mariana took the above grainy picture of the both of us with my phone. So yes, now I own two copies of each one of those books, lol! But I'll save the signed copies for my collection and use the other ones for re-reads -- rationalize, rationalize. :)

Well, that's my experience with Ms. Singh. Now I should go on with my recap of last month's reads which will be a short one this month. I decided to post my usual minis separately since this post is already so long.
Total May Reads: 19
Contemporary: 9 (Romance: 8  Fiction: 1)
Historical Romance: 2
Paranormal Romance: 2
LGBT:  6 (Romance: 4 Mystery: 1 Erotica: 1)
  1. Dragon Bound (Elder Race #1) by Thea Harrison: B+
  2. Somebody Wonderful by Kate Rothwell: B+
  3. Twisted Creek by Jodi Thomas: B+
  4. Driftwood by Harper Fox: B+
  5. Portrait of Seduction by Carrie Lofty (Upcoming Review)
  6. Getting Rid of Bradley by Jennifer Crusie (Upcoming Review)
  7. Summer at Seaside Cove by Jacquie D'Alessandro: (Upcoming Review)
  8. The Heat is On by Jill Shalvis: B
  9. Homecoming by Rick R. Reed (Upcoming Mini): B
  10. The Summer We Came to Life by Deborah Cloyd: B-
  11. On the Line by Kathryn Shay (Upcoming Review)
  12. Under Her Skin Anthology with Jeaniene Frost, Meljean Brook, Ilona Andrews: B-
  13. Love and Rockets by Gavin Atlas: B-
  14. Promises by Marie Sexton (Upcoming Mini): C+
  15. The Dark Farewell by Josh Lanyon (Upcoming Mini): C
  16. Still the One (The Educators, #1) by Kathryn Shay (Upcoming Mini): C
  17. Someone Like You (The Educators, #2) by Kathryn Shay (Upcoming Mini): C
  18. Maybe This Time (The Educators, #3) by Kathryn Shay (Upcoming Mini): C-
  19. His Hearth by Mary Calmes (Upcoming Mini): D-
As you can see my top reads this month are a combination of the genres I read this month and new and old releases: paranormal, contemporary, historical and LGBT romance -- no fantasy or science fiction this month! I began reading War for the Oaks by Emma Bull and although I was enjoying it, didn't finish it before the end of the month. When it comes to science fiction I did try reading Blue Galaxy by Diane Dooley, but I'm afraid that book ended up in my "did not finish" pile. 

What about you? What book stood out for you in May? 


  1. Sounds like your evening w/ Ms. Singh was quite fun! And another good reading month for you. I still have to read my Carrie Lofty book.

  2. Hils,

    What a great pic of you and Ms. Singh! Sounds like you and Mariana had a great time. I love book signings but don't go to enough of them these days.

    It appears that May was quite a productive reading month for you. I'm looking forward to your mini reviews, in particular the one for Homecoming by Rick R. Reed. It's in my TBR so I'm curious.

    The book that stood out for me in May was Kiss of The Fur Queen by Tomson Highway. This was a re-read. I'm still working on the review, but hope to post it soon.


  3. Gorgeous photo of you and Nalini Hils - I'm so jealous! I live in the same city as Nalini and hopefully one day I'll get to meet her (although I'll probably be tongue-tired :)

    And a great reading month. I had quite a few favourite reads last month, mostly fantasy :)

  4. Phyl it was a really nice. There was a good showing for Ms. Singh there. The room was full. :) My month was far better than expected too reading-wise, I was surprised. The Lofty book is a good follow up to Song of Seduction.

    Indie! Lol on that picture, I look like a fuzz ball between my wind-puffed up hair and the grainy quality, but hey... it's the only one I have and I was putting it up. *g*

    Ini-Mini for Homecoming by Reed coming up soon. :) I'll look forward to your review of Kiss of The Fur Queen, as I'm really not familiar with it at all! It'll be a surprise. :D

    Orannia, if you live right there you should try to meet her at some event! I don't think she'll give you a chance to be tongue-tied, though. I went up to her and just said "Great to meet you. I love your work. Thank you" and she just... surprised me. Believe it or not SHE asked me questions... she remembered my reviews and other details about how long I've been reading her series. How does she do that? What a memory!

    RE: Your reading month. Fantasy is great! I'm going back to it this month since one of my goals is to read at least one per month this year. :)

  5. Oh *jealous*

    I just read KISS OF SNOW and absolutely loved it. Did she give anything away about the Ghost?

  6. Wonderful picture of you and Ms. Singh! How great to not only get to meet her but to go with a friend. Thanks for sharing your experience. :)

    Great reading month. The standouts for me were across the genres. Pamela Clare's Breaking Point, Clay & Susan Griffith's The Greyfriar and Karen Rose's You Belong to Me.

  7. Ohh how wonderful to have met Nalini Singh!
    I hope you enjoyed it!


  8. Li, I loved KoS too. RE: The Ghost. That's the one answer EVERYONE wanted to know, but she danced around the Ghost, and in the end didn't give away any real information... :(

    Leslie, I loved going with Mariana! We both had a great time and it made the experience that much better.

    I have my eye on The Greyfriar after reading your review -- that book/series sounds great. I have another of Karen Rose's books in my TBR and need to get going with her backlist, but it's great to see you're still enjoy her books. :)

  9. Sonia, it was such a treat! I had a wonderful time. :)

  10. That's so awesome you got to meet Ms. Singh and got some autographs. :P It's a good rationalization in my book, to have a keepsake copy (as Nath puts it) and a reading copy. I have a few like that myself.

    Good reading month too!

  11. Sounds like you had a great time, Hils!! Totally awesome! and LOL, I own almost all of the Psy-Changelings series in double... or triplicate ^_^; So just rationalize LOL.

    Also very good month :) Looking forward to some of your reviews!! The d'Alessandro and Crusie!!

  12. Hey!! Thanks for coming with me to the signing... it was great to see you again :) It's always much more fun when you're with someone you like!

    Nalini really is tiny! and such a warm personality. It's no wonder her books are so great, when she seems like the nicest and smartest person.... very canny too ;) She wouldn't divulge anything! The picture didn't look as grainy on the BB... it's still two beautiful women, so it's all good :)

    Looking forward to our next meet... hopefully Nat and Christine will join.

  13. I will definitely have to try and meet her!

  14. Ames, yeah... I didn't really mind much, really, having the autographed copies for my collection is a great. And those are books I will re-read. :)

    Nath, triplicate?! LOL, I don't have the space! But for these, I'll make room.

    It was a good reading month, and otherwise. Hope to have those reviews up soon. :)

    Mariana, I know! I enjoyed it so much more with you there. ;P LOL, I loved the way she gave away just enough to keep everyone interested... but, no real juice! She's good.

    The picture looks great on the phone. It just didn't look as good when it was downloaded. You did a good job taking the picture, it's from a phone! :) I can't wait to see all the ladies.

    Orannia, yes!

  15. Hi Hilcia!
    So sorry I didn't get around to visiting your blog last week and hence I'm so late replying here! I'm SO happy that you and Mariana got to go see Nalini! I love the photo--both of you are beautiful! I wish I had been there with you! I only discovered that Nalini was going to be in NYC a few days before the event and I thought everything was set for me to go, but then several hours beforehand my plans fell apart due to familial responsibilities and no one to cover for me. What else is new... :( My only consolation was that I will get a second chance to meet Nalini at the RWA literacy signing, although I know the experience won't be as intimate.

    It looks like you had an amazingly productive month reading some great stories.

    I finished War of the Oaks in the first day or two of June, too. Did you finish it yet? I liked it a lot. Would give it a B grade, I think.

  16. Christine! I hoped that you would come too, and asked Mariana about you... but she told me about your other commitments. I was on pins and needles until the last moment too with my job commitments, but at the last minute it was a go. I'm so glad you'll get to meet her at RWA. I'll see you there too, we missed you and Natalie. :)

    My reading month was better than expected. These days I'm reading whatever is easier to read while on the go... unfortunately my reading of War for the Oaks was interrupted one too many times. I wanted to sit and concentrate and wasn't able to do that. I haven't finished it yet... one more push and I'll be done. But yes, so far it's about a B for me too. :)


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