Let’s Talk! (Week #4 – 11/23/12)

Week 4 and the discussions are getting better and better. It’s sparked some very interesting and lively conversations and given us all something to think about. That’s always a good thing. Here’s what Smash and Kt have to tell us about the weekly meme.

Originally hosted by Melissa from i swim for oceans, Smash & Kt took her original inspiration, and made it their own, expanding it to more than just books. Let’s get personal (but respectfully so) and learn more about one another!  Each week, a different question will be posted along with a place to link up your posts and visit other people’s responses. This meme is definitely meant to bring out conversation and meet new people. So, Let’s Talk!

And here’s Today’s Question:

Do you have any hobbies other than blogging/reading? How do you balance them along with all of life’s other responsibilities? Feel free to share pictures. (Thank you, Mandee/Books & Bling, April/My 5 Monkeys and Doville!)

I’ve always been artistic, at least I like to think that I am. When my kids were small I made all their Halloween costumes and some clothes. I was always painting on something (flower pots, gourds, t-shirts, sea shells, etc.) and I made Christmas ornaments. Along with all the ‘crafty’ stuff, I also played around doing business cards and flyers for my friends and family. All that ‘spare time’ creative energy went out the window when my youngest went to school full time. That was when Mom started working full time. Leave it to me to turn a hobby into a job. My first full time job after we moved to Virginia was at a small print shop. I had no formal education and I was completely self-taught. Lucky for me they took a chance on my lack of experience. That first job lasted 10 years.

I guess it’s kinda lame, but I really don’t have a ‘real’ hobby. I do, however, love to play with graphics even when they aren’t connected to a job that I’m doing. It’s pretty cool when you like your job that much, huh? To be honest, a huge part of my job involves typesetting so I keep my creative juices flowing by playing with random designs and graphics that aren’t associated with work. It’s also a great way to keep my skills fresh and learn new techniques. So what kind of designs do I ‘play’ with? Some of them you have probably seen floating around the web, but others are just for friends and family.

That’s not it by a long shot, but you get the idea. When I’m bored, I create.  That is when I’m not reading, working, blogging, spending time with family and friends or sleeping (which seems to be completely optional BTW). 😉

So how about you? What do you do in your spare time? Is it something relaxing, active or creative? Maybe a combination? Join the meme or share in the comments. Let’s Talk!

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Vampire Seeker (Samantha Carter #1) by Tim O’Rourke

Samantha Carter believes that a vampire is responsible for the brutal deaths of four women in her hometown.

Desperate to prove this, Samantha accepts the friendship of a Preacher, two Cowgirls, and a Cowboy. Together, they are hired by the mysterious Englishman, Spencer Drake, to travel by steam train into the mountains in search of gold. It’s on this journey that Samantha finds romance with a man who keeps a dark and terrifying secret and discovers that vampires are not only very real, but are far more dangerous than she ever imagined. In order to stay alive, Samantha needs to figure out why things have gone so terribly wrong for her. But more importantly, why is she out of time?

**This is a mature New Adult Novel for ages 17 and up. Contains sexual situations and scenes of horror**

This is the first book by Tim O’Rourke that I’ve read. Jumping on the band wagon late has its advantages though. Mainly, I get to go back and see what I’ve been missing if I run into an author that sparks my interest. I’m happy to say that I can now add O’Rourke to that list.

I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from Vampire Seeker and even if I had a preconceived notion, I wouldn’t have come close.

This book was like no other Vampire book that I’ve read, at least not that I remember. It was an interesting combination of historical Western, mystery, time travel, a touch of vivid gore, vampires, danger for everyone involved, shape shifters and romance.You also shouldn’t pick this one up expecting smexy vampires. O’Rourke’s are anything but smexy. These vamps are straight out of your worst nightmare. *shivers* Needless to say, nothing about this book was what you would expect and sometimes that’s a very good thing.

The characters were interesting, to say the least. There was plenty of action, lots of mystery and enough twists and turns to keep readers wondering up until almost the very end exactly who the good guys and bad guys really were. Throw in a hot little romance and there was more than enough packed into this book to keep almost any reader’s interest.

Just a warning, even though Vampire Seeker doesn’t end in a huge cliff hanger, it does end leaving readers with a gnawing desire to know what could possibly happen next. Needless to say, I will be watching for the second installment.

I downloaded Vampire Seeker from Amazon under it’s previous title Cowgirls & Vampires. Between the time I read it and this review, the title changed to Vampire Seeker. Hmm… which cover and title do you like best?

I received Vampire Seeker under the title  Cowgirls & Vampires as a free download from Amazon on October 26, 2012.