MJ’s Musings: Atomic Habits

The speaker at a recent meeting recommended the book Atomic Habits. I put the Kindle version on hold at the library. When it finally came in, I slogged my way through it.

It covered a lot of the same material as the Julia Cameron classic, The Artist’s Way. Many of the suggestions are things I incorporated into my life years ago. Other things were tricks I’ve tried and found don’t work well for me.

I don’t believe the myth that it takes 21 days to form a habit.

Maybe other people, who haven’t read as many time-management books as I have would get more out of this newest bible.  In the meantime, I’ll continue to grab my affirmation beads every morning and remind myself: “I am an author. Writing is the best part of my day.”


MJ’s Musings: Book Bingo-Three (Or More)’s Company

Yes indeed, this year’s Book Bingo Challenge included a square for reading a ménage book. I figured reading a paranormal-sci-fi space alien type book would work much better for this square than a standard romance.

I went with No Limit, by Susan Hayes. The book is Book 5 in The Drift Series. I was pleasantly surprised that there was an actual, compelling plot that didn’t revolve around sex.  I didn’t need to read the first four books in the series (which I may go back and do). The story was well-written and well-motivated. I do love me some good space romance. This book hit on all levels without being gratuitously graphic.

MJ’s Musings: SEP-Nobody’s Baby But Mine

Nobody’s Baby But Mine is a little creepy in that there is a slight stalker element. The heroine wants a dumb man to father a child for her, so she sets her sights on a football quarterback who says “ain’t” in a southern drawl and makes assumptions. Bad assumptions, all the way around.  The hero may be from North Carolina, but being from the south is the only assumption the heroine got right. Almost.

Tricking the football playing into getting her pregnant is morally wrong; the heroine knows it, but her longing for a child who won’t be a genius (the heroine is a physicist who’s always felt like a freak because she’s smart), but who will be normal outweighs her morals.  Twice.

There is a secret baby (for a couple of pages), a marriage that’s anything but convenient, and a truly lovely romance that unfolds as the hero and heroine get to know each other.

The cast of secondary characters is interesting. I adore the hero’s hillbilly grandmother. The secondary romance, between the hero’s parents is interesting, and showcases what a brilliant author Susan Elizabeth Phillips is. The subtleties tying the primary romance to the secondary is extremely well done. At first, I didn’t like the hero’s father, but with each re-read of the book and my own development as an author have made me appreciate exactly what Phillips did here.

Four stars.


MJ’s Musings: Book Bingo-Published in 2018

I filled in my PUBLISHED IN 2018 square with JD Robb’s LEVERAGE IN DEATH, book #47 in the popular IN DEATH SERIES.

I am addicted to Eve and Roarke and the rest of the characters. They are my friends. I love how the characters continue to grow and mature.

I always wonder how JD Robb (a/k/a Nora Roberts) can come up with fresh, new crimes with fresh, new motivations.  This story smacked of true events from earlier this century.  While many people didn’t like this book, I disagree. The story gave us a look at how behind-the-scenes machinations can steal our retirement funds. (OK, maybe not specifically, but I can connect the dots!)

And it did fill in one of my Book Bingo squares.




MJ’s Musings: SEP-Heaven Texas

I really like this book. I love how the heroine is the only one who can see through the hero’s BS–and calls him on it. The hero is a lot deeper than many romance heroes.  He is a genuinely good soul all the time. Even at the black moment in the story, and events turn ugly, his innate goodness shines.

Some of the town folk and athletes are stereotypical, but I think the author does that to enhance the qualities of the hero.

The reason the book is so low on my list is because of the secondary plot/romance between the hero’s mother and the bad-boy who’d loved her from afar in their youth. I’ve read this book numerous times , and while that plotline is  not as creepy-icky as it seemed the first time I read the book, and is really handled quite well, I still find it creepy-icky. In this reader’s opinion, there’s a scene that occurs in a dark closet that should have remained in the dark closet and not on the page.

Overall: 4 stars.