Saturday, July 31, 2010

What was that about?

The book I'm about to read must be really, really good because I just had a dream about it last night, and I haven't even read the first page. It hasn't even been purchased yet. I have an idea of what its about, but for the most part, I've been trying to stay away from the Barnes & Noble over-written reviews. This is what happened in my dream. I promise to clarify the facts that I know about the book at the end. Are you ready? My dream starts-NOW!

I was sitting at the kitchen table in my neighbors house when I noticed a copy of CRASHERS by Dana Haynes sitting on the table. The conversation went a little like this-

"Are you reading this book, CRASHERS?"
"No, we bought it for Ethan."
"Why would you buy this book for Ethan? He's only ten."
"We assumed it was about puzzles because of the front cover."
"Well, it isn't."
As my neighbor continues to talk, I pick up the book to look at it. The first thing I notice is that there are children's illustrations inside. They are very colorful pictures. One illustration is of a plane crash site. The ground is charred and black and there are jagged metal pieces scattered on the ground. In the middle of the picture is a man wearing a dark jacket with the letters NTSB on it. He's holding a baby Jesus. I know! A baby Jesus! And that's not even the first thing I'm worried about when I see the picture. My first thought was about the Barnes & Noble lady with the advance copy that I wrote about in my last post. I remember thinking to myself, that out of everything she wrote, she never once mentioned that this was a children's book with colorful illustrations and big print. No wonder she found the book easy to read and finished it in one day. She never mentioned baby Jesus, either. That woman vexes me. Then I woke up and laughed!
What I can tell you about CRASHERS is that this is not a children's book with colorful illustrations and big print. I'm fairly confident baby Jesus plays no role in this book, or at least I don't believe he's being rescued at a crash site by a member of the NTSB. I can also tell you that this book is going to be awesome because I've already dreamt about it and because the writer is from Oregon. I'm from Oregon, so that means Dana Haynes already gets a star from me!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Things You Should Know...

It would be unthinkable of me to continue with this blog without reading books suggested to me by a literary agent in New York. To do so would be insulting, especially when she made it a point to tell me that we like to read the same things. I'm even willing to put aside my shame and embarrassment about my ignorance to GOOGLE ALERT! I spent days crying and being sick to my stomach when I realized that they probably new about this blog the day I created it, which also means, they are probably more than aware of the short lived blog I created under the name of Kate Dahson. My head hangs in shame...just thinking about it makes me want to puke! Nonetheless, I'm taking on a personal challenge of reading a newly released book this weekend and hope to feature it here some time next week. I've spent the last few days reading book reviews on Barnes & Noble and other book sites in the hope that I can improve on my book reporting skills. The following are two things I promise not to do when featuring a book-
1. I promise to never write a book review that is 4 1/2 paragraphs long and does nothing but regurgitate what has already been written about a book. To do so would be extremely annoying. There is a reason why there are quotes by real critics already on the cover of a new book. The books have already been read, people. By serious book critics. You rewriting a synopsis of a book that tells me everything there is to know about the book only makes me not to want to read it. Instead, I promise to feature a book only if I like it and can apply it to my daily life experiences. If I don't like a book I read, you will never know that I've read it. To talk about a book in a negative way is cruel and unnecessary. I'm here to assist authors in their talents, not crush their dreams. And the fact that they have an agent-well, it kind of means something to me.
2. If I am ever a member of the elite group of readers that is fortunate enough to receive an advanced copy of a book; YOU WILL NEVER READ ABOUT IT IN MY BOOK FEATURE! To do such a thing is just plain mean and suggests you are a bragger. There is one particular book reviewer that is all over the Barnes and Noble web page...she's apparently received an advance copy of the book I plan to feature. She wrote that she received it early and did exactly what I promised I won't do in promise #1. You know who you are, lady. Stop doing this! You might want to consider this: if you didn't buy the book, why should I?
Other things you should know:
1. I am not a book critic. I am, however, a very lovely woman living in Salt Lake City sharing my experiences with reading.
2. I'm aware that I used the word "hell" in a previous post. My husband approved the content.
3. I'm also aware that the JR Ward web link you can find on my blog contains adult content. Please feel free to click out of the link at any time. Telling me about it won't make me remove it from my blog.
4. I DO NOT have a working relationship with Janet Reid. I've never met her. Sending e-mails to my Gmail account suggesting that I tell her about your query will not help you. I don't even know what a query is.
5. Please feel free to leave improvement suggestions at - only after you've read my profile. Kindness is always appreciated!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Can I Really Rewrite This Dream?

I'm really not one for having nightmares. Overall, I find my dreams funny and they mostly involve unrealistic plot lines after I've become obsessed with a new book character. For instance, some of my dreams include me fighting Lessers with the Black Dagger Brotherhood in Caldwell. Other dreams have me battling legal motions along side Scott Finn in Boston. My current dreams have me battling crime with David Trevellyan and Jack Reacher in major cities throughout the U.S. - Does any of this even surprise you? After reading an article about rewriting nightmares, I told my husband about a really horrible dream I've been having, and insisted that he set out to help me rewrite it. (I married a really great man that understands how important it is for me to find perfection in all things-including and not limited dreams) This dream centers around my favorite character, David Trevellyan. We're hunting down a criminal in some major city when suddenly we are overpowered by two really bad looking characters that can only be described as, Paul Bunyon types (they only look like Paul Bunyon people because I was trying to help find a roadside attraction in Oregon for my nieces speech class). They manage to take David's weapon away and shove me against a wall. At that point, I'm just kind of stuck in the background watching. Really not much I can do. The Bunyon men clearly aren't interested in me. They didn't even check me for a weapon. Which wouldn't have mattered anyway when you here what happens next...David manages to knock one of the men down but he's struggling with the second one. That's when he starts yelling at me; "Shoot him, Kate. Shoot him!" At this point in my dream I always start to panic, and end up forcing myself to wake because I know this really bad dream is about to get worse and I don't want to see how it ends. David wanting me to shoot seems logical since I do indeed carry a weapon. The problem is with my weapon choice for said dream! The only gun I technically own is a Walther PPK collectors edition. I found it the night my husband insisted I buy my own weapon for the shooting range. He took me to the gun counter and showed me all these really cute revolvers with hot pink handles. I admit, I was impressed, but somewhere during the demonstration by the store owner, my eye wandered just a little to the right, and the gun I chose was even more spectacular than the one he was wanting me to buy. Unfortunately, owning a collectors edition means you can't use it. Apparently that same rule applies in my dream. So, tonight, my husband is taking me to the shooting range to practice with his SIG SAUER 238. I'm hoping that the time I'm taking out of my schedule to practice with this weapon will ensure my ability to assist my most beloved character the next time he yells at me for help in a dream. I'll let you know if this rewriting your dream stuff really works. As you know, I'm bound to blog about it!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Another Jack Reacher Moment...

So I was sitting in church on Sunday (ya, I know-the fact that I'm starting a sentence on my post like this is bugging me, too) when my good friend and neighbor stood up to address the congregation. He's a tall man with dark hair and brown eyes. He's almost as tall as Reacher. That information isn't necessary-but what the hell; it might just help you imagine the scene a little better. He stands up and walks to the podium and informs us that today he is going to be teaching us a gospel principle using watermelons as an analogy. I've attended a ton of meetings in my time and I have to say, that for me, this was a first. I was interested. Not too surprised- my neighbor loves watermelons. It really shouldn't have been a stretch to think he would find a way to use them in a teaching lesson. He started with the usual stuff. "It all starts with this one little seed and some soil that..." Let's skip ahead. "...the largest known watermelon on record weighs 262 pounds." And that's when I became interested. 262 pounds! I don't know if little bells are going off around me when I'm having a Reacher moment, but I was having a Reacher moment and my husband was totally aware of it. I actually sat up a little taller and when I looked at Richard, I knew he knew what was on my mind. I just smiled and said, "that watermelon weighs more than Jack Reacher does!" We laughed the rest of the meeting. I'm still unsure what gospel principle my neighbor was trying to teach- I just find it comical that no matter where I go, Jack Reacher manages to find his way into my thoughts! And the fact that I actually sat there and visualized Jack Reacher and a watermelon next to each other in my head is absolutely crazy! Who does that? Man-I love you, Jack!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Searching For Janet Reid-

I'll be the first to admit that my love for all things book related is a little over the top. But even I have to take a step back at times and ponder my sanity when the agent of my "most favorite author" is leaving me a comment on my blog. Not that I'm not thankful. I am...I even called my good friend and told her to check it out and then I e-mailed her Janet's link! I can assure you, Janet, if you are reading this, that I have every intention of reading the work of the two writers you suggested just as soon as I finish my time with Reacher. My concern, however, is how you came to know about my newly created blog in the first place. My first guess would be the e-mail I sent to Andrew. Yes, I sent him my link-but only so he could get to know me just a little bit better before our meeting at a future bookstore. It was a harmless gesture, I assure you. I'm not aspiring to be an author. I only want to be a blogger-blogging makes me happy-and if you read anything other than the post you commented on you should know by now that I like to be happy! I'm not required to be perfect here. Which, according to some of your links, is a good thing. I would also like to note to any and all who read this, that I am not stalking "my most favorite" author, Andrew Grant. I'm strictly an admirer hoping to be upgraded to a friend because the word fan reminds me of Annie Wilkes from Stephen King's- MISERY! and who in their right mind wants to be associated with that? Not me. EVER! With that being said- if Andrew is in need of an assistant during his US apparences I am more than willing to assist. As you can imagine, I plan to blog about it! And now that I can prove to my husband that Andrew is indeed off the market-he is very supportive of my request for employment in this field...

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Pioneer Day-a little late!

Book eight in the Reacher series didn't last as long as I thought it would. I would have started book nine, but the darn thing is locked in my desk drawer at work and with Friday being a holiday for the state of Utah, I wasn't able to get to it. So to commemorate Pioneer Day (which is July 24th-every year!) I chose; Journey to Zion by Carol Cornwall Madsen, as my read for the weekend. It is a 732 page volume of pioneer stories. In short, it is a collection of Mormon trail journal entries. The book was compiled to help celebrate the 1997 Sesquicentennial Celebration of the Mormon pioneers trek West. I personally have no ancestors that were part of this movement, but my husband, Richard, has a rich heritage of early saints that made this trek. I found the book to be incredibly moving, if not heartbreaking at times. This book, as the author states, "notes the importance of the unity of the Saints-their commitment to a common purpose and their willingness to sacrifice personal needs..." for what they felt was the "greater good".
If you have ancestors that were a part of this movement, reading this collection of stories will make you appreciate them more. Happy reading!

Friday, July 23, 2010


This is my favorite children's book...
This book is the one good thing I had as a child. I loved it! I would carry it around with me all the time and cried for days when I lost it. Over the years, I've collected lots of children's books. I've always loved them because they make me happy. And for those of you who know me, I like being happy!

You see, I always wanted to be the parent that had the best collection of storybooks to read to their children. I wanted to be the mother that would read to her children until they fell asleep and then keep reading to herself just so she could hear them breathing while they slept. I spent years dreaming of the perfect little family, living in the perfect little home, in the perfect neighborhood, with a massive collection of books. At one time, I counted 13 copies of this very book in my collection. I had started purchasing them when I was 20. This particular book is one I still can't pass up when I come across it at the bookstore. I'll always buy it, and I will always give it away.


Richard and I weren't blessed with a family to call our own. So over the years, I've been slowly giving away my collection of storybooks to expectant mothers in our neighborhood. I give them away hoping that they will love them as much as I do. Sometimes, I wonder if they would love them more if they knew they were coming from my personal collection of unfulfilled dreams. I know the children love them...and it pleases me to no end when I see them with a book I've given them to read.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Delaying The Inevitable

Book eight in the Reacher Novels has been in my purse for over a week. I just started reading it last night. Why the delay? Starting book eight means I am halfway through this series. I'm sure for many that wouldn't be a big deal. For me; it is. Have you ever had that sudden anxiety when you know you have less than a hundred pages to read in a really good book? I get that feeling every time I read, and for some reason knowing I'm about to finish this series has my anxiety at an all time high. I have seven books left. It should be too soon for me to panic just yet, but I am. I read fast...really fast. So I'm thinking about limiting my reading time to 200 pages per day. Or falling back to one book a week instead. My goal was to read 52 books this year and this book will put me at #45! That alone should make me happy, right? Fulfilling goals is supposed to be a good thing. But, what am I supposed to do when I'm finished? What author and series should I choose next on my book list? Will the next series be as good as the last one? Will I enjoy the characters as much as I've enjoyed reading about Scott Finn, David Trevellyan and Jack Reacher? These questions are overwhelming me, and I fear I may lose my mind!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

"He Called Me Kate"

Hi Sabrina - or if you'd be prepared to count me among your friends, Kate!

It was great to hear from you. Thanks very much for getting in touch, and for the kind words of encouragement about David and his adventures. Leaving the world of telecommunications was the best thing that ever happened to me, too, so I'm delighted that the outcome has been good from your point of view. Writing the Trevellyan novels is fun, but there's nothing better than hearing that they're also fun to read!

Here's hoping that our paths do indeed cross soon - be it at a ballgame, a restaurant, or a bookstore...

With all best wishes,

Monday, July 19, 2010

My Dearest Andrew~

So, I was thinking that if I wanted to go see Andrew Grant at a book appearance it might be best for me to try to get to know him before hand. You know, develop some on-line friendship between us so when the book tour gets started it won't be so awkward for any of us when we actually meet. The following letter is my attempt to persuade Andrew into a friendship. I'll let you know if he responds. Something tells me he won't-but I think it's worth a try.

Look, I’m totally going out on a limb in writing this e-mail. My husband already thinks I’ve turned into a book freak and he almost bit his tongue off when I told him we would be planning next year’s vacations around at least two of Andrew Grant’s book appearances. The only reason why he’s agreeing to it is because I’m hoping that you’ll be kind and schedule your US book tour during baseball season. Heck, I might even be able to convince him to head to England since we have friends in Sheffield that we’ve been meaning to stop by and visit for about 10 years now. I like to think I’m good at rationalizing things-and so far…I’m impressing myself.

On a more serious note…I think you’re great! Love the books and I totally think David T. is H-O-T…HOT!

Honestly, I just want to be the friendly face in the crowd that shows up to encourage you and tell you how amazing your work is. I tell my friends that you moving on from the world of telecommunications is one of the best things that could have happened to me. You see, I took some time off from reading and when I picked up a book again it totally changed me for the better. (Don’t tell your brother but I didn’t even know who Lee Child was until I read your first book) I’m happy and I just want to support those wonderfully gifted individuals that are helping me become so excited about life. So, if you’re interested, my husband and I would be more than happy to take you to a game during one of your scheduled stops in the US next year. That’s if you like baseball-if not, dinner out will work for us too!

Here’s to wishing you the best in your new career and much, much happiness-

Sabrina E. Ogden (my friends call me Kate)
Salt Lake City

Friday, July 16, 2010

Reacher Worthiness

And I'm talking about my Reacher worthiness...
Richard caught me looking at myself in the mirror a couple of weeks ago. He had past me a couple of times on his way in and out of the living room. Each time he came by I was still standing in front of the mirror looking at my face. I was turning my head from side to side and practicing different smiles. Then finally he asked the much awaited question. "What are you looking at?" "My eyes," I said. Of course he wanted to know why. And I answered. Honestly. Something I probably shouldn't have done. I told him I was trying to determine if my eyes were Reacher worthy. He turned around and walked away. I'm sure people reading this would like to know what in the name of all that's sane would make me to do such a thing. Easy. I like the way Reacher describes the female characters he meets in each book. He's checking them out, but not in the disgusting, "I want some of that" way. (Okay, so maybe he has-but it has never been when a woman is looking-that would be impolite and Reacher isn't like that!) Instead, Reacher describes women in a way that makes any girl, even the plain girls, beautiful. He notices everything about them. From the firmness of their arms to the way their eyes light up when they smile. I wanted to know if my eyes were like that. I've been told that I have pretty eyes. And of course I'm going to like them because they belong to me. But since I'm hoping to meet Lee Child one day, I was wondering if when he met me if he would think my eyes would be worthy of description in a Reacher Novel. Well, anyway, Richard finally came back and said they were Reacher worthy. I think he understood that my whole day was going to rest on this subject and he just wanted me to move on. Richard has always been one to catch on quick. He knows I like Reacher and that at least once a day I'm going to mention him in conversation (at least until I finish the books). But now he knows that a Reacher worthy compliment will get me to do just about anything. Example: Later that week he caught me looking at my bottom in my favorite pair of jeans. Of course I asked if they still looked good on me. His response was quick; "Your butt's Reacher worthy. Now lets go!" I thanked him for that later.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

I'm Really Not SELFISH!

I've recently discovered a new love for reading. New because it has been almost 12 years since I've actually picked up a book. I've been busy. At least that's what I like to say. Since last fall when my friend, Jacque, gave me a book to read I've been busy buying books and adding to my personal collection. I've been buying a lot of books, which is why my husband keeps nagging me about getting a library card. I don't want a library card. I want to own my books! They're relatively inexpensive compared to his golf clubs and his gun collection. My purses, shoes and book purchases would never equal the amount of money he spends on his two favorite hobbies each year. I'm not getting a library card. At least not yet. Hopefully, never!
Anyway, selfishness is my question today and it has to do with the books that I'm starting to become buried in. I really never cared about lending my books to others until just recently. I had a friend read a copy of a book by my most favorite author (Andrew Grant) and then when he was finished I sent it on to another friend at work. I noticed upon its return that the first borrower didn't hold my book the way I do and now it feels worn. I'm devastated. I'm currently in the middle of the Reacher Novels and people are starting to ask when they can begin the books. I'm not wanting to share them at this point for fear that Reacher will be worn out when he returns to me. The thought sends me into a panic. That's when I looked up the definition to see if I'm really being as selfish as I think I am.
SELFISH: (1) looking after own desires; concerned with your own interests, needs, and wishes while ignoring those of others-(2) demonstrating selfishness: showing that personal needs and wishes are thought to be more important than those of other people.
I read the definition and it doesn't read like I thought it would. In fact, I really think I can rationalize not sharing my books at all. Maybe reserving them only for the closest people in my life. Which would be ME and my closest friends at work and people in my neighborhood. It would include friends like Vicki, who loaned me all of her Anne Rice novels. It would be hardly fair for me not to return the favor especially since I've done nothing but talk about Reacher for the last three weeks. And it would include friends like Adrienne, since I never attended the book club she started after I promised her I would participate. She deserves to read the books and I really think she'd like Reacher. I like Reacher. It's possible she might like him as much as me. But she won't know if I don't let her borrow my books. It would also include Jacque. It was Jacque that helped me rediscover my love for reading by loaning me the BDB series so clearly I would need to loan her a series that I believe would fall into the BDB category. And if you haven't guessed it; I believe Reacher to be Brotherhood worthy. I suppose I could also make an exception for those that don't have a library card. It would be very hypocritical of me to tell them to get one when I'm not willing to get one myself. See, I'm really not that selfish after all.