First Quarter Reads

This is not everything I’ve read, just five selected books that I can recommend. 🙂

In case you can’t read the graphic, I’ll type out the info below. I’ve linked to all the stores I could find them on. Apple Books doesn’t seem to be working with my link maker right now, but these should all be available there, too!

Liza's Recent Reads March 2021

  1. The Heroine’s Journey, by Gail Carriger. Literary Criticism.
  2. Shit, Actually, by Lindy West. Film Criticism, Humor.
  3. Piranesi, by Susanna Clarke. Fantasy.
  4. A Hope Divided, by Alyssa Cole. Historical Romance.
  5. American Demon, by Kim Harrison. Urban Fantasy.

Loving Libraries

My love of public libraries has been nurtured from a young age. Our library was small, but we’d visit fairly regularly. I had my own card and everything, and I’m old enough to remember card catalogs and signing the lined paper in the little pocket inside the book I wanted to check out.


(Side note: it is an adult dream of mine to someday have an old card catalog in my house. I have no idea what I would put in it. But when I’m rich and famous, I’m finding one. Harder would be finding a place to put it, but where there’s a will, there’s a way!)

My love for libraries has only expanded as I’ve gotten older and had kids of my own. Before Covid-19 came around and changed our lives, we went to our public library fairly regularly, where my kids also have their own cards.

Also, I discovered Libby/Overdrive, and I could borrow audiobooks for the kiddos! (They love audiobooks; I am indifferent, mostly preferring to read on my own because it’s faster.) Then, the pandemic came along, and I fell even harder in love with the library! I could get ebooks through it, without even having to leave the house. Totally free, and the authors get paid–it’s a win/win situation.

If you haven’t figured this out already, here are the steps!

  1. Get your library card out and have it ready.
  2. Download the Libby app on your phone (or Overdrive on your Kindle tablet. Overdrive automatically comes with a Kobo e-reader, as I just learned when I got mine for Christmas).
  3. Follow the prompts through Libby, choosing your library, entering your card number, all that good stuff. (I don’t know if things have changed, but this wasn’t 100% intuitive when I did it a few months ago.)
  4. Browse books, select “Borrow” when you find one you want to read.
  5. Choose how you want to read it. If it’s Kindle, you’ll be taken to Amazon’s website to finish the process. Kobo has a different system, which you can read more about here.
  6. Enjoy your library book!

If you’re looking for a specific book (like one of mine!) and your library doesn’t have it, you can request that they purchase it. Libraries have funds for purchasing requested titles, and I’ve taken advantage of that several times.

I think that’s about all! If you have trouble, do contact your local library and ask questions. I’ve had to do this, too, and they’re super helpful and patient. I ❤ librarians.

New Releases in Paranormal Romance

I have a treat for you today! Behold, a collection of new paranormal romance titles! All of these books have been released this month. And even better: they are endorsed by the authors’ pets (pictured at the bottom of this post), those faithful friends who watched us slave away at our respective keyboards…and may have jumped on said keyboards, thereby enriching and excitifying (yes it’s a word, no don’t look it up) our lives!

January Releases

Filthy Cowboy, by Liza Street, mom of furbabies Tiny TinderMcSpanks and Luna. When a naive little librarian named Dew comes to the Junkyard, jaguar shifter Stetson cannot resist checking her out and learning about her personal Dew-y decimal system. Because their love is OVERDUE. (Terrible library jokes! But I have no regrets!)

Banshee Power, by Jen Katemi, who is mom to Bobby, a black cat, and Meika, a torty girl. She is determined to ignore her banshee power… until the magic she despises becomes the only thing standing between death, and life, for herself and everyone she cares about.

Noxx: Alien Adoption Agency #1, by Tasha Black, mom to Sookie, a German Shepherd. The Alien Adoption Agency is going to make all of Luna’s dreams come true. At least, that’s what Luna believes when she boards a rickety space craft headed for a frontier moon to meet the child she will raise in exchange for 100 acres of land and a modest stipend. But she doesn’t count on the dangerous animals, the short but lonely nights, or the big blue dragon warrior who informs her he is on permanent security duty for the baby.

Jericho (Hybrid Chronicles is the boxed set paperback, released at the very end of December), by T.K. Eldridge, owner of dogs Ace & Bear and cats Moushie & Mitchie. He had made the ultimate sacrifice…only he wasn’t really dead. Jericho and his team may be a different kind of soldier, but they still hold to their moral codes and honor. Going against a direct order is not something they would normally consider… But nothing about this team is normal.

A Warlock’s Storm, by Marie-Claude Bourque, who is mom to Lucy. Stranded on a boat in a haunted New England harbor, a rugged warlock and a sassy female panther shifter battle sea-monsters and revenants as they try to survive the night.

Heart of the Goddess, by Laura Greenwood, owner of Treacle. Trapped in the last place she wants to be, Hathor risks losing her sense of self. Between convincing Seth there’s nothing going on between her and Amun, plotting her escape, and trying to find out information for the other gods, Hathor has her hands full. But if she can’t work out how to stop Seth’s plan, then the world is doomed.

❤ Annnnd here are the pets! Looking at those beautiful faces, I think it’s pretty safe to say they endorse our books. 😉 (Also please note: Liza’s Luna and Jen’s Meika could easily be sisters!)

author pets(1)

The Final Week of 2020

hello 2021Dear 2021,

You could not come soon enough. I’m not one to linger on the past, so I won’t lay blame or tell you all the ways you could’ve really improved things by arriving sooner. Your evil stepsibling, 2020, was wholly irresponsible and honestly, a lot of us are wary now of what dangers you might be hiding. I think it prudent for me to outline my expectations for the coming year.

  1. Only nice surprises, please
  2. Kindness is the law of the land–and this means: no name-calling, no physical violence
  3. Allow us to heal
  4. I want reason and order
  5. Give those who need it an extra kick of Empathy Cocktail
  6. End poverty and hunger
  7. Bring together friends and family who’ve been separated too long
  8. Let artists do their art
  9. Let scientists do their science
  10. Let activists bring about awareness and positive change
  11. Let every person have a voice
  12. Give us lots of great books
  13. Bring us inspiration
  14. Bring laughter

And finally, let 2021 be like a romance novel, where good triumphs, and love wins.

Thank you, 2020, for whatever small mercies we were given (because I realize it could’ve been worse, although that’s hard to imagine). And thank you, 2021, for ushering in a new year and allowing me to hope for and envision something better.

Happy Holidays

happy holidays

Whether you finished celebrating Chanukah last week, or you’re about to dive into Christmas or Kwanzaa this week, or none of the above, I’m wishing you happy holidays–past, present, future. ❤

What this week looks like for me is last-minute gift-wrapping, phone calls and Facetime with friends and family, doing puzzles and baking with the kiddos, assembling my 2021 reading journal, and then collapsing at the end of each day with Mr. Street, each of us on opposite sides of the couch and either quietly reading our own separate books, or watching a show on Netflix. Nice and peaceful.

I hope you’re able to find peace and happiness despite the strange closing to a strange year.