Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Reading Update and Another Surgery in October

I saw the thoracic surgeon last week and she’s all for me having the surgery to remove the tumor on my right lung. Said it’s small (8mm) and in an easy spot to remove (yay?). I still have to pass the pulmonary test (in Sep), but since I don’t have COPD or any breathing problems, I was assured I’d pass it.

So… I’m having surgery (#3 for the year) on October 11. Should only spend one night in the hospital, too. Will this be the end of my surgeries? I sure hope so!

Trying to make appointments for the surgery and for the procedures needed prior to the surgery has been interesting. We’re gone for most of September and don’t get back home until Oct 5. I was able to make the pulmonary appointment for Sep 9, just barely squeezing it between two trips. But I’m glad I was able to wait until October for the surgery. Now I can go see my mom!

Here’s what I read since my last update:

Book 23

Dates read: July 29 – August 8, 2022
Title: Knight Awakening
Year of publication: 2020
Author: Rebecca Zanetti
Genre: Apocalyptic romantic suspense
Series: Scorpius Syndrome #6
# of Pages: 330
Paper or plastic: Trade paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from the book: The world has changed. Any rules that might’ve been in place before the Scorpius bacterium ripped through civilization and decreased its population are no longer in place. Obsession and survival are the new reality. So, Marcus Knight, after a hellish time in captivity that stole most of his memory and all of his soul, has one focus, and that’s keeping Dr. Penelope Kim safe in the aftermath. She risked her life to save him once, and she’s all that matters. For months, he’s kept his distance, protecting her from afar, because he knows that one touch—one sigh—one kiss—from her will never be enough.
    Penny Kim is one of the few doctors still living, and she alone holds the key to ensuring the human race continues. Several of her friends are pregnant, and the clock is ticking down on their survival. Her days are filled with experiments and hope, while her nights are consumed with visions and dreams of the hard-bodied and powerful soldier who’s made her safety his one and only mission. She should be wary of him; she should be terrified of him. Yet all she feels is an unreal craving for his touch that gets stronger every day. Life is short, and she’s unwilling to wait, unaware of the danger already hunting them both. Some risks are worth it, even in this new and dangerous world.
My thoughts: Enjoyed this one better than the last. And it’s the last in the series, which is very clear. I liked how it wrapped up.

I’m still walking every morning I can and noticed that my pace has increased in speed, despite the hot and humid mornings. I’m thinking that clip is really doing the job! Or maybe it’s the beta blockers. Who knows? I just know I’ve been able to push it and not feel like I’m dying out there. And the weather hasn’t been all that comfortable. Cooler weather is in the forecast (with less humidity), but I doubt I’m here to enjoy it. We leave for NJ on Friday for a family reunion on Saturday. Lots of driving and very little walking. But I enjoy the trip and seeing my cousins. I try to go every year (or at least every year they hold it).

So… do you attend family reunions? If so, do you have to travel far for them?  

Happy Reading!


Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Reading Update, Passed Step #1, and a Mini Vacation

Saw my cardiac surgeon yesterday. Got the clearance to have surgery to remove the spot on my lung. That was step #1. #2 is to pass the pulmonary test (which will occur on Sep 8). And #3 is for the cardiothoracic surgeon to agree surgery is the way to go. I get that answer tomorrow. I think. I see the doctor then, anyway!

But good news! I don’t have to take the blood thinners anymore. My cardiac surgeon put me on baby aspirin instead. I’m just glad that all these pills I have to take are SMALL and I’m able to take them all at once. If I had any monster-sized pills, I’d be in a world of hurt. My throat likes to choke up on those. It’s all in my head, I’m sure, but when can we ever tell our head to STOP IT! Yeah, not so easy, is it?

Here’s what I read since my last update:

Book 22

Dates read: July 11-28, 2022
Title: Winter Igniting
Year of publication: 2018
Author: Rebecca Zanetti
Genre: Apocalyptic romantic suspense
Series: Scorpius Syndrome #5
# of Pages: 340
Paper or plastic: Trade paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from the book: With nothing to lose, former cop Damon Winter agrees to an undercover op to infiltrate a dangerous cult in this dangerous post-Scorpius world. After one look at his new partner, he knows she belongs as far as humanly possible away from not only the cult, but from him. She’s sweet and kind and has no business being in peril, but she’s determined to help. Suddenly, the part he’s playing as her man explodes into a passion neither of them had expected.
    April Snyder has survived loss, pain, and uncertainty, and she’s ready to live again. There’s nothing left but to make a difference for others, so why not go undercover with the cult? Now all she has to do is keep it professional and ignore her handsome, deadly, overbearing partner, who’s too sexy for her peace of mind. Intrigue, risk, and danger make for an irresistible temptation—until enemies close in from every side, threatening everyone they’ve sworn to protect.
My thoughts: Took me forever to read this book. I liked it, but the alpha hero bit is starting to wear thin.

Hubby and I spent the last weekend (actually 6 days) in Grand Haven, MI visiting friends. The weather was really nice up there. Not near as hot and humid. Of course, the weather could have been nice at home, too, although I think there were some thunderstorms while we were gone. I did a lot of walking and did sooooo much better than when I was there last year (I did struggle a little with walking). So maybe that mitraclip is working. I still haven’t tried a lot of stairs. Guess I should get on that, huh?

I also found the cookies I bought last year at the Holland Windmill gift shop and fell in love with. Couldn’t find them online anywhere, and, unfortunately, I failed to write down the name of the cookies (or who made them) after I finished them. The gift shop didn’t sell them anymore, but the clerk suggested we go to Meijer and check out the Danish section. Meijer, huh? Well… it worked! I bought 15 packages (I think they’re a lot cheaper at Meijer than they were at the gift shop, but I can’t really remember). Now I wonder if our own Meijer store carries these cookies. That would be awesome! I’ll have to check it out next time I go in there.

During our visit with our friends, we all took a trip to Frankenmuth, MI for dinner and some shopping. It took us two and a half hours to drive there, but I have to admit, the dinner was fabulous. Didn’t really get to do all that much shopping since we had that long car ride home, but I can now say I’ve been in the largest Christmas store. It was a neat little town and maybe I’ll make it up there again (and do a little more exploring).

So… have you ever been to Grand Haven? How about Frankenmuth?

Happy Reading!


Wednesday, July 27, 2022

Update, but not with Reading

My reading has really slowed down. And I feel like I’m reading almost every day, but maybe I’m not or it’s not for a long period of time when I am reading? I can’t blame it on writing, because I haven’t done that in awhile, either (and I really thought I was progressing there…). I can probably blame it on my crochet projects, but I think that’s slowing down now, too, so maybe my reading will pick back up. Or I just need to finish this series I’m reading and pick up something a little more fast paced (with less alpha heroes). But I’m determined to finish the series, even if it has slowed my reading down.

Anyway… I do have some news. I saw my oncologist on the 19th. He kind of surprised me. He recommends I have surgery to remove the spot on my lung.



While that doesn’t exactly thrill me, the fact that I would only have to be on the immunotherapy drugs for a year after the surgery (6 injections total), instead of forever without the surgery (once every 4 weeks) does sound promising. First, I have to get clearance from my cardiac surgeon (to see whether or not I can handle another surgery with my heart valve), who I see on Aug 2. I already have an appointment with the cardiothoracic surgeon on Aug 4.

Man, I’m learning about all the different types of surgeons!

I had first decided to get a biopsy done in August (before Dragon Con and our vacation in Sept) to determine whether I would need surgery. But since my oncologist is like, 99% sure the spot on my lung IS cancer, I later thought it was kind of stupid to have the biopsy since it looked like surgery would happen anyway. Of course the surgeon could have other ideas/options. I’ll find out on Aug 4.

In any case… my oncologist said he’s okay with me waiting until October to have the surgery. I really didn’t want to mess up my upcoming trips and he keeps stating that there isn’t any hurry in what I decide to do (the spot didn’t grow between April & July).

This was good news. We have a tour through five national parks in September that starts in Jackson Hole, WY and ends in Las Vegas. I really wanted to drive from LV to see my mom in Santa Barbara, but we couldn’t make any plans until I knew I was safe to travel. Well, I’m safe to travel and we’ll be able to see my mom after the tour. I’m really happy about that! We got the flights and rental cars booked. Finally!

So… that’s what’s going on with me. And I was really thinking my surgery days were over. Guess not.



Wednesday, July 13, 2022

Reading Update and Doing Good

Everything is still peachy here! I’m pretty much back to where I was before the surgery – walking-wise, that is. And frankly, I’m not noticing any difference. But my resting heart rate is lower, and so is my blood pressure. But I give credit for that to the beta blocker I’m on. But… I had my CT scan and checked the results. It said the growth on my lung hasn’t grown (yay) and that my heart was stable (where before it stated it was enlarged). So I’m taking that all in as good news.

Here’s what I read since my last update:

Book 20

Dates read: June 21-July 6, 2022
Title: Storm Gathering
Year of publication: 2017
Author: Rebecca Zanetti
Genre: Apocalyptic romantic suspense
Series: Scorpius Syndrome #4
# of Pages: 338
Paper or plastic: Trade paperback
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from the book: Even before surviving the Scorpius bacterium, Greyson Storm was a lone wolf navigating minefields. As a kid, he learned to take a hit and find safety. As an adult, he joined the military and quickly learned how to protect and defend. When the world ended, he created a mercenary camp with military precision, no entanglements, and a promise to avenge a fallen friend. As part of that vow, he kidnapped Maureen Shadow, but now that he has let her go, her blue eyes and intriguing mind keep haunting him…
    As possibly the only Biotechnology Engineer still living, Maureen Shadow might be humanity’s one hope to survive the aftermath of Scorpius, making her frighteningly valuable to both allies and enemies. Even after sexual tension explodes between her and Greyson, she’s not sure which camp he belongs to—friend or foe? Worse yet, survival may mean thwarting his prime mission, putting her in even more peril. When danger and seduction collide, there is no safety in this new world.
My thoughts: Main thing that bugged me about this book (and the previous ones, too), is the description of the Santa Barbara and Goleta beach areas. I don’t know what beaches the author went to, but it wasn’t Santa Barbara or Goleta. I guess I’ll just have to pretend it’s another city. Which is a shame. I’m from that area and it would have been nice to picture it correctly. Other people wouldn’t notice, so don’t let that stop you from reading these books. But if you are interested, you definitely need to start with book 1. These are not stand alone reads.

Book 21

Dates read: July 7-10, 2022
Title: Blaze Erupting
Year of publication: 2018
Author: Rebecca Zanetti
Genre: Apocalyptic romantic suspense
Series: Scorpius Syndrome #4.5
# of Pages: 105
Paper or plastic: Nook
How obtained: Purchased
Blurb from the Goodreads: Hugh Johnson is nobody’s hero, and the idea of being in the limelight makes him want to growl. He takes care of his brothers, does his job, and enjoys a mellow evening hanging with his hound dog and watching the sports channel. So when sweet and sexy Ellie Smithers from his college chemistry class asks him to save millions of people from a nuclear meltdown, he doggedly steps forward while telling himself that the world hasn’t changed and he can go back to his relaxing life. One look at Ellie and excitement doesn’t seem so bad.
    Eleanor Smithers knows that the Scorpius bacteria has and will change life as we know it, but that’s a concern for another day. She’s been hand-picked as the computer guru for The Brigade, which is the USA’s first line of defense against all things Scorpius, including homegrown terrorists who’ve just been waiting for a chance to strike. Their target is a nuclear power plant in the east, and the only person who can help her is Hugh, the sexy, laconic, dangerous man she had a crush on so long ago.
My thoughts: This novella is marked as #4.5 in the series but can probably be read FIRST! You don’t need to have read any of the other books to enjoy this one. Basically, this is based before the events in book 1. I find it fascinating that we had an actual pandemic not shortly after these were written.

Got busy yesterday and forgot to post this at my scheduled time. I can blame the Reds game (they beat the Yankees—yay!!), but it’s really because I don’t think I even opened my laptop yesterday. Just wasn’t in the mood. Hopefully that changes soon.

Happy Reading!


Wednesday, June 29, 2022

It’s a Start and Other News

I registered for a book signing that will take place June 2023 in Cleveland, OH. I will also register for Literary Love Savannah soon for that convention which takes place in July 2023. Have I finished Ghostly Protector yet? Nope. But… I’m actually working on it. So… it’s a start. If these events don’t motivate me, nothing will and I’ll have to face that fact… next year.

I feel great. Actually, I don’t feel all that different from before the surgery (except I haven’t attempted steps yet—hopefully get the clearance tomorrow). But, because my heart went into AFib during surgery, I have to wear a heart monitor for 30 days AND take blood thinners during that time. The heart monitor itches (well, the tape securing the monitor itches) and is driving me a little nuts. I’ll be glad when July 20th comes around. I return the monitor then and find out whether or not I need to be on the thinners any longer. Keeping fingers crossed all goes well!

I see my oncologist on July 19 and will find out when I start treatment on my cancer then. I’ve got some trips coming up (family reunion in August, DragonCon during Labor Day weekend, and a tour through national parks in mid-Sept), but he said they’d be able to work around our schedule. We’ll see!

I didn’t finish reading a book this week, so no update, but I wanted to share my other news with you. Stuff is actually happening! Maybe life is finally going back to normal. I can hope!

So… got any trips scheduled for this summer?

Happy Reading!