Sunday 11 November 2012

Letterbox Love (16)

Letterbox Love Is Hosted By The Fabulous Lynsey over at Narratively Speaking.  Its a fun way for us to showcase our weeks new books here in the UK

Book links will take you to Amazon UK


SHOCK HORROR!!  I didn't get ANY books last week, hence why there was no LL post.  Thank goodness my letterbox was back in action this week!!
Apart from bookish goodness, one of my baby dogs had to have a huge operation, so I shall be playing nurse to her for the foreseeable future - hoping to maybe get some more reading in....

RECEIVED

 From TOR (Many Thanks)


BOUGHT 
 (from Waterstones Bluewater)

I got this signed in person by three of the stars of the show - Joseph Gilgun, Karla Crome & Nathan McMullen



Monday 5 November 2012

Review - Shadows On The Moon By Zoe Marriott

"On my fourteenth birthday when the sakura was in full bloom, the men came to kill us. We saw them come, Aimi and me. We were excited, because we did not know how to be frightened. We had never seen soldiers before.

Suzume is a shadow-weaver. She can create mantles of darkness and light, walk unseen in the middle of the day, change her face. She can be anyone she wants to be. Except herself.

Suzume died officially the day the Prince's men accused her father of treason. Now even she is no longer sure of her true identity.

Is she the girl of noble birth living under the tyranny of her mother’s new husband, Lord Terayama? A lowly drudge scraping a living in the ashes of Terayama’s kitchens? Or Yue, the most beautiful courtesan in the Moonlit Lands?

Everyone knows Yue is destined to capture the heart of a prince. Only she knows that she is determined to use his power to destroy Terayama.

And nothing will stop her. Not even love"
taken from Goodreads


I've wanted to read a book by the lovely Zoe Marriott for some time now.  I've had Shadows On The Moon, sitting on my shelf since last December and just never found myself getting round to it.  Thanks to the awesome Bluewater YA bookclub we chose Shadows as our book for October - YES I FINALLY GET TO READ IT!!!

The cover is beautiful.  So subtle and delicate, but gives you the setting and atmosphere of the book.  Huge thumbs up!!

I read a interview with Zoe before starting the book and when I read that it was a slight retelling of Cinderella, I did a little inward groan.  I just felt I had read so many fairytale revamps that I didn't see how it could be done differently again.  I am thrilled to say I was completely wrong on all counts.  This was completely new and to be honest it was a very loose adaptation and so felt very fresh.

I'd never read a book with a Japanese setting before either, so yet more new ground for me.  I hold my hands up to be rather uneducated in these matters and found myself rather confused by the names of people and places.  Also objects they used were quite foreign to me.  I have to admit to needing a glossary, I think it would have enhanced my enjoyment of the story somewhat.

The story is rather dark and understandably the character of Suzume suffers greatly through this.  I was really surprised by the way in which she deals with her depression and really didn't expect to find this in a fantasy set book.  I totally applaud Zoe for her handling of it.  Its a subject that doesn't in my opinion get much coverage and any highlighting of it is needed.

Although I had times of not fulling understanding the story due to my ignorance, I was absolutely thrilled with the conclusion.  It was rounded off really neatly and was as happy a end to the story as you could expect, which was a much more realistic way to finish the story. 

Zoe's writing is incredible and pulls you straight in.  I can't wait to read more from her in the future, just hope I'll understand more of the setting next time.

Rating 3 1/2 Out Of 5

Published in The UK By Walker Books

This Can Be Purchased HERE and from all good book sellers

Wednesday 31 October 2012

Books That Make Me Go Oooooh (56) Everbound By Brodi Ashton

Waiting On Wednesday is a brilliant book blog feature hosted by Breaking The Spine    

Everbound By Brodi Ashton
Published In The UK By Simon And Schuster
Due For Release February 2013
Amazon LINK
Goodreads LINK

"It's been two months since the dark tunnels of the underworld came for Nikki Beckett. That night, Nikki's boyfriend, Jack, made the ultimate sacrifice and took her place in the Everneath for eternity - a debt that should have been hers. Every night Jack appears in her dreams, lost and confused, and wasting away. All Nikki wants is to save him before it's too late, but no matter how hard she tries to reach for his hand, she can never find it.
Desperate for answers, Nikki turns to Cole, the immortal bad boy who wants to make her his Queen - and the one person least likely to help. But it seems Nikki has touched his heart, and surprisingly, Cole agrees to help in the only way he can - by taking Nikki to the Everneath himself.
As they descend into the heart of the Everneath Nikki and Cole discover that their journey will be more difficult than they'd anticipated, and more deadly. Nikki vows to stop at nothing to save Jack - even if it means making an incredible sacrifice of her own…"
taken from Goodreads


Ever since I read Everneath this year, I've been obsessing over when I would get to read the next part to this epic story.  I found it completely impossible to put down and read the book in just two sittings.  Just reading the blurb for book 2 and looking at the cover has me anxious for its arrival, could it go any slower???!

Monday 29 October 2012

Review - Pantomime By Laura Lam

"R. H. Ragona’s Circus of Magic is the greatest circus of Ellada. Nestled among the glowing blue Penglass—remnants of a mysterious civilisation long gone—are wonders beyond the wildest imagination. It’s a place where anything seems possible, where if you close your eyes you can believe that the magic and knowledge of the vanished Chimaera is still there. It’s a place where anyone can hide.

Iphigenia Laurus, or Gene, the daughter of a noble family, is uncomfortable in corsets and crinoline, and prefers climbing trees to debutante balls. Micah Grey, a runaway living on the streets, joins the circus as an aerialist’s apprentice and soon becomes the circus’s rising star.

But Gene and Micah have balancing acts of their own to perform, and a secret in their blood that could unlock the mysteries of Ellada."
taken from Goodreads


I'd been seeing the cover image for this popping up in the blogging world quite a bit and was understandably very drawn to it straight away.  I guess I did a fair bit of judging a book by its cover, as I knew I wanted to read it before I knew anything much about it.  Luckily for me the cover wasn't deceptive!!

The cover is gorgeous.  I love the vintage style image of the girl, with just the touches of colour in the background showing the circus.  I guess I hadn't thought of circus' being places filled with secrets before and the fact that the cover girl seems to be going 'Ssssh' is a fantastic little touch.

The story kicks off with two characters in two seasons (spring & summer) Its two totally different environments that I really couldn't see much to connect them, but that made the reading all the more enjoyable as I was fascinated with both landscapes.  I couldn't decide which one I wanted to read about more.

The alternating chapters / Characters are so well written and flow so well.  It kept the reading exciting.

It takes quite some time to learn what links the characters and to say I was shocked is a huge understatement.  I just didn't see it coming but also didn't expect this type of occurrence in an olde worlde setting (I love trying to be cryptic)  This also goes to prove my extreme naivety once again!!

After the link reveal I have to say that I started to feel hugely conflicted by the actions of individuals in the book.  I could totally understand why they took the actions that they did but it just didn't feel right and by this time I was so involved in the story that I felt somewhat conspiritory in what was happening.  I felt guilty and that's something I've never felt before from reading - its pretty genius!!

The conclusion to the story left my head spinning.  I actually stayed up to the early hours of the morning because I just needed to know what was going to happen.  I was shocked by some of the events and then just questioning what was happening here or what did this mean or why did this happen?  I'm just praying that a book 2 is in the works as I NEED some things filled in pronto!!!

Pantomime is a fascinating, exciting, thought provoking, colourful read that kept me intrigued for hours (especially some really boring hours at the hospital - this book was my Savior then)  Its left me dying to know more about the circus!!!

Rating 4 Out Of 5

Published In The UK By Strange Chemistry

This Can Be Purchased HERE and From good book retailers

Sunday 28 October 2012

Letterbox Love (15)

Letterbox Love Is Hosted By The Fabulous Lynsey over at Narratively Speaking.  Its a fun way for us to showcase our weeks new books here in the UK

Book links will take you to Amazon UK
 
 

 There has been no blogging this week as I had my wisdom teeth out last Monday and have been a bit under the weather since.  Fighting fit again and ready to blog away.
I got just the one book this week, but I think its a good'un!!

BOUGHT

Hopefully going to get this signed by the artist Emma this weekend!!

Sunday 21 October 2012

Letterbox Love (14)

  Letterbox Love Is Hosted By The Fabulous Lynsey over at Narratively Speaking.  Its a fun way for us to showcase our weeks new books here in the UK
Book links will take you to Amazon UK




I was away last weekend so missed out a LL - Whoops!  But back this week with lots of fab goodies!

Received




Signed Sticker From Karen Mahoney, via the wonderful Jenny at Wondrous Reads

Bought

 Grisha Posters For The Gathering Dark / Shadow & Bone By Leigh Bardugo

Thank you SO much to everyone that sent me books and stuff - you ROCK!!

Friday 19 October 2012

Review - The Dark Heroine By Abigail Gibbs

"One moment can change your life forever…

For Violet Lee, a chance encounter on a darkened street draws her into a world beyond her wildest imaginings, a timeless place of vast elegance and immeasurable wealth – of beautiful mansions and lavish parties – where a decadent group of friends live for pleasure alone. A place from which there is no escape… no matter how hard Violet tries.

Yet all the riches in the world can’t mask the darkness that lies beneath the gilded surface, embodied in the charismatic but dangerous Kaspar Varn.

Violet and Kaspar surrender to a passion that transcends their separate worlds – but it’s a passion that comes at a price…
"
taken from Goodreads

The first I actually saw of this book was in a tweet from DarkReaders, saying they had been sent a copy and were loving it.  A few days later I got an email telling me about the release and wondering if I would like to review it.  After a very brief conversation with Casey over at DR I was advised to say a HELL YES!!

The cover is very cool.  Understated, but effective.  I love the key details like the bite marks.  I think maybe more elegant writing would have been better for the title though.

This has to have one of the most exhilarating starts to a book ever.  Seriously so much happens and not at all pretty I have to say.  I was pulled in straight away and was desperate to know more.  The writing is so incredibly descriptive and vivid that it was so easy to paint the picture of what was happening.  This could be helped slightly by the use of very local locations for me, being used in the book.  I read Rochester and had a little excited dance (I don't get out often obviously)

The story shifts incredibly quickly that kept me on my toes.  In just a few pages I read Creepy stuff, sexy stuff and down right sinister stuff.  It was done in a way that flowed well though, so didn't feel out of place or anything.

I found some of the wording to be very 'Americanised' which I found strange seeing as it was a London / Kent set book.  I can't say I hear people saying words like 'Jerk' or 'News Anchor' very often.

The thing that surprises me so much with this book is the fact that the author was just 15 when she started to write this book.  There are things that happen in this story that I barely know now let alone back in my teens.  Its a real eye opener!

Although Kaspar is the lead male character, I found him particularly annoying and not all that appealing.  His constant nickname for Violet was a HUGE turn off too.  I really wouldn't find it attractive to be called that all the time.  His character does mellow somewhat, but I don't know if the damage had already been done for me as a reader?  I guess I will know more in the next book.

This book takes some really intriguing twists that makes it very absorbing.  Its so addictive that it had me constantly saying just one more chapter.

Rating 4 Out Of 5

Published In The UK By Harper Voyager

This Can Be Purchased HERE and from good book retailers

Wednesday 17 October 2012

Books That Make Me Go Oooooh (55) Infinite Sky By C.J. Flood

Waiting On Wednesday is a brilliant book blog feature hosted by Breaking The Spine        

Infinite Sky By C.J. Flood
Published In The UK By Simon And Schuster
Due For Release February 2013
Amazon LINK
Goodreads LINK

"Iris Dancy’s free-spirited mum has left for Tunisia, her dad’s rarely sober and her brother’s determined to fight anyone with a pair of fists.

When a family of travellers move into the overgrown paddock overnight, her dad looks set to finally lose it. Gypsies are parasites he says, but Iris is intrigued. As her dad plans to evict the travelling family, Iris makes friends with their teenage son. Trick Deran is a bare knuckle boxer who says he’s done with fighting, but is he telling the truth?

When tools go missing from the shed, the travellers are the first suspects. Iris’s brother, Sam, warns her to stay away from Trick; he’s dangerous, but Iris can no longer blindly follow her brother’s advice. He’s got secrets of his own, and she’s not sure he can be trusted himself.

Infinite Sky is a family story about betrayal and loyalty, and love."
taken from Goodreads


I have to say this is not one of my usual reads that I'm drawn to, but this one just has that something about it.  This totally has a Romeo & Juliet sound to me, but with a completely contemporary twist to it.  I'm really interested to see how it pans out!!

Wednesday 10 October 2012

Books That Make Me Go Oooooh (54) Half Lives By Sara Grant

Waiting On Wednesday is a brilliant book blog feature hosted by Breaking The Spine       

Half Lives By Sara Grant
Published In The UK By Indigo Books
Due For Release May 2013
Amazon LINK
Goodreads LINK

"Present day: Icie is a typical high school teenager - until disaster strikes and her parents send her to find shelter inside a mountain near Las Vegas.

The future: Beckett lives on The Mountain - a sacred place devoted to the Great I AM. He must soon become the leader of his people. But Beckett is forced to break one of the sacred laws, and when the Great I AM does not strike him down, Beckett finds himself starting to question his beliefs.

As Beckett investigates The Mountain's history, Icie's story is revealed - along with the terrifying truth of what lies at the heart of The Mountain.

A gripping tale of two people separated by time but connected by a story - and by the dark secret the story was meant to protect." taken from Amazon



How awesome does this sound??  I love a good bit of dystopia and anyone that has read Dark Parties, knows that Sara can write some kick ass dystopia.  I can't wait to see what she does with this new exciting tale!

Monday 8 October 2012

Review - Poltergeeks By Sean Cummings

"15-year-old Julie Richardson is about to learn that being the daughter of a witch isn't all it's cracked up to be. When she and her best friend, Marcus, witness an elderly lady jettisoned out the front door of her home, it's pretty obvious to Julie there's a supernatural connection.

In fact, there's a whisper of menace behind increasing levels of poltergeist activity all over town. After a large-scale paranormal assault on Julie's high school, her mother falls victim to the spell Endless Night. Now it's a race against time to find out who is responsible or Julie won't just lose her mother's soul, she'll lose her mother's life."
taken from goodreads


The first thing that definitely drew me to this book was the cover.  Its just the coolest imagery, to me it has a very comic book look, which blends well with the characters in the book both being into everything geektastic.  It also tells you a whole lot about the story, which is always handy for picking a read suited to you!!

From the get go, you really get that Julie the lead character is a hell of a sassy teen.  The narration is totally contemporary, but then you have a supernatural twist on it.  It really makes it for teens of today, so in that case I'm not sure of the long term reader appeal on this.

I have to say quite often I felt really frustrated with Julie.  Now this could partly be down to me getting older and not being as youthful but I just wanted Julie to listen to the advice her Mum would give her or actually speak to an elder.  I couldn't read a reason for her to be so rebellious and so came my annoyance.  I do also understand that the story wouldn't have gone very far if she hadn't of been a tad naughty, so in that end it was needed.

For me this did feel like a very fictional world - of course it is fictional but when reading I love to be able to think about how things would work if this was real life.  This just didn't have anything that I could see actually being real.  For this it had a kind of Charmed / Sabrina the Teenage witch feel - both shows that I really enjoyed, so it didn't make the book a bad experience, just a different experience.

Something that I really loved about the book was the setting of Calgary in Canada.  I've never actually been there but my best friend moved there when we were teenagers, so it was fun reading of places that she had mentioned to me.  I now want to go to Tim Hortons even more!

There is definite room for expansion on the story.  There are quite a few loose ends that would be great to see built on or sorted once and for all!

A fun, sassy read for teens of today, that like a hint of magic!!

Rating 3 Out Of 5

Published In The UK By Strange Chemistry

This Can Be Purchased HERE and from all good book retailers

Sunday 7 October 2012

Letterbox Love (13)

  Letterbox Love Is Hosted By The Fabulous Lynsey over at Narratively Speaking.  Its a fun way for us to showcase our weeks new books here in the UK
Book links will take you to Amazon UK


Definitely not as epic as week, this week but it would be hard to top meeting Leigh Bardugo & J K Rowling.  I did still get some great new reads though!!

RECEIVED

I got both of these from the Fantastic Guys At ATOM - very excited to read both of them!!!




Wednesday 3 October 2012

Books That Make Me Go Oooooh (53) Clockwork Princess By Cassandra Clare

Waiting On Wednesday is a brilliant book blog feature hosted by Breaking The Spine      

Clockwork Princess By Cassandra Clare (The Infernal Devices 3)
Due For Release March 2013
Published In The UK By Walker Books
Amazon LINK
Goodreads LINK


"If the only way to save the world was to destroy what you loved most, would you do it? The clock is ticking. Everyone must choose. Passion. Power. Secrets. Enchantment. Danger closes in around the Shadowhunters in the third and final instalment of the bestselling Infernal Devices trilogy." taken from Amazon.co.uk





I've been a fan of Cassandra Clare for many years now, but the release of the first of The Infernal Devices books multiplied my fanship, basically making me a MEGA fangirl.  Although part of me can't wait to read the conclusion to this series, I will be devastated to lose this world and everyone in it.

Tuesday 2 October 2012

Leigh Bardugo London Event

A couple of months ago during my reading and blogging slump I was offered the opportunity to go and meet Leigh Bardugo at her only London event.  At that time I hadn't even read her book (The Gathering Dark - Soon to be Shadow And Bone)  I was hearing amazing things about it though and so said a yes please to the event.  Obviously I wanted to read the book before meeting Leigh and I was more gutted that I hadn't read it sooner (my Review)  It totally cured my reading slump, as well as making me fall in love with the world of the Grisha.

I was told that I could bring a plus one along, this was fantastic.  Not only could I get my Mum to read and love the book, but I'd also have someone to tag along to the event with me.  Of course my Mum adored the book!

Tuesday 25th September came along as so arrived the day I'd get to meet Leigh, the creator of this new world I've fallen in love with.  I warned everyone on twitter, that some fangirling was possible!!

The event was held at Waterstones Piccadilly Circus.  We arrived to an already pretty full event.  So many bloggers that I know and love were there, so double win - I got to meet Leigh and see them!!

The Arrival of Leigh
It all started with the lovely Nina from Indigo / Orion books introducing Leigh, not that she needed any introducing at all.

Leigh's Chocked Reaction to the Video
We were shown an incredible video that was made by fellow UK blogger Darkreaders.  The video actually made Leigh CRY!!  Seriously she was so thrilled by it, you could see the emotion pouring away.  All the lovely ladies involved got gorgeous leather Grisha wristbands.

Next Leigh did a brilliant read from the book.  Possibly one of the best scenes from the beginning of the book, we were all hooked once again.

Leigh Reading from the book




After this we did a Q&A session, where we found out all sorts of things about the book, the writing process, what Leigh's hopes are for the future.  It really did feel like a catch up with a lot of friends though.  Leigh is so friendly and engaging you just feel you have known her forever.



We all had a geek out session over the news that Dreamworks have bought the rights to the book and a movie will be made.  For me it is so exciting to know I'll get to see characters I have connected with come to life, so to see Leigh and her reaction to that same news but about a world she has created was just wonderful.

Now was our opportunity to get our books signed and have 1 to 1 chats with Leigh.  I played it cool for a while and eventually went up and made a complete fool of myself by totally fangirling out.  Seriously I could barely find the words to say I loved the book and the world and Thank you.  I think Leigh could see my serious lack of words because she stood up and gave me the biggest hug.  I then got to have a photo with her - look at how happy I look!!!

Leigh & Me

Leigh and Nina then held a round of trivia questions with the winners getting some seriously cool Grisha style gifts.  With a little help I got a question right and was the very lucky winner of a gorgeous handmade bookmark.  This night just got better and better for me!!

The event concluded with lots of chatting and general mingling.  All in all one hell of an event that I will never forget.  Thank you so much to Nina, everyone at Orion &Waterstones and most of all HUGE Thanks to Leigh - you made this fangirl real happy!!

My souvenirs of the day

Monday 1 October 2012

Review - The Reckoning By Alma Katsu

"I turned to Luke and reached for him. My blood felt as though it had seized up in my veins.
"Lanny, what is it?" Luke asked.
I clutched his lapel desperately
"It's Adair. He's free."

FOR 200 YEARS SHE'S BEEN HIDING

He gave her immortality.
She tried to destroy him.
Now he is searching for her.
They must not meet.
Or there will be a RECKONING" taken from Goodreads

Last year the only 'adult' fiction I read was The Taker.  I was utterly enthralled by it.  At times it was so brutal that I had to put the book down, but that just made me more eager to pick it up again.  I was so eager to read the sequel, so imagine my excitement when it finally arrived.
The cover although utterly beautiful, I kind of don't get the relevance of it to the book.  I don't even think Lanny is a brunette?  I loved the original tattoo style of the first cover and was hoping to see something in that design again.  I kind of missed the black edged pages too.

My initial reaction to starting this was that I didn't feel as anxious as I did with The Taker.  Generally I am more scared of the unknown, so you would assume that this booking being set in real time as opposed to flash backs would be a hell of a lot more scary.  Somehow I had a completely different reaction to what I expected.

I did love the use of different narrators for this instalment.  I didn't expect some characters to have the thoughts they did, so this gave me a great new insight.

Some of the story was a little repetitive for me.  Especially the thoughts of Adair.  I felt he just kept thinking and saying the same things and by repeating them it didn't change or accomplish anything.

I didn't feel any great connection to any of the characters.  For me they were weak, twisted, unpleasant in some cases all of the above.  I didn't feel I was routing for anyone in particular, but it enabled me to read it in an unemotional way.

All that said the conclusion was brilliant, I am so excited to see where the next book will go.  I actually have no idea what will happen next!

Overall I didn't enjoy this as much as The Taker, but I know understand why its necessary to bridge to the conclusion which I have very HIGH hopes for!!

Rating 3 1/2 Out Of 5

Published In The UK By Century Books

This Can Be Purchased HERE and from Good book retailers

Sunday 30 September 2012

Letterbox Love (12)

   Letterbox Love Is Hosted By The Fabulous Lynsey over at Narratively Speaking.  Its a fun way for us to showcase our weeks new books here in the UK
Book links will take you to Amazon UK


Not gonna lie, I have had a spectacular week.  Got to meet two amazing authors, that I did fangirl over just a bit!!  Check back this week for full reports, but in the mean time here are the bookish lovelies that I got...

RECEIVED

 From BLOOMSBURY
I am loving the sound of this, quite a different book for me to read really, but I'm really excited for it

I showcased this as one of my books That Make Me Go Oooooh the other week, so I really am eager for this one.  I love the idea of it and am hearing great reports already!

 I got to go to an event for the amazing The Gathering Dark (Shadow & Bone) By Leigh Bardugo And INDIGO book - such a fantastic event and I got some awesome swag bits!!


 BOUGHT

So the other event I got to go to was the launch of the Casual Vacancy, where I got to meet the LEGEND that is J.K.Rowling.  Pretty immense moment!!


Thank you to everyone that sent me bits this week - Love you all!!!

Wednesday 26 September 2012

Books That Make Me Go Oooooh (52) Pantomime By Laura Lam

Waiting On Wednesday is a brilliant book blog feature hosted by Breaking The Spine     

Pantomime By Laura Lam
Published In The UK By Strange Chemistry
Due For Release February 2013
Amazon Link
Goodreads Link

"R.H. Ragona's Circus of Magic is the greatest circus of Ellada. Nestled among the glowing blue Penglass -- remnants of a mysterious civilisation long gone -- are wonders beyond the wildest imagination. It's a place where anything seems possible, where if you close your eyes you can believe that the magic and knowledge of the vanished Chimaera is still there. It's a place where anyone can hide.

Iphigenia Laurus, or Gene, the daughter of a noble family, is uncomfortable in corsets and crinoline, and prefers climbing trees to debutante balls. Micah Grey, a runaway living on the streets, joins the circus as an aerialist's apprentice and soon becomes the circus’s rising star.

But Gene and Micah have balancing acts of their own to perform, and a secret in their blood that could unlock the mysteries of Ellada"


WOW, just WOW!!  This is definitely an exciting premise for a book, bringing together so many factors that I LOVE!!  This can't come soon enough!!


Monday 24 September 2012

Review - A Monster Calls By Patrick Ness

"The monster showed up after midnight. As they do.

But it isn't the monster Conor's been expecting. He's been expecting the one from his nightmare, the one he's had nearly every night since his mother started her treatments, the one with the darkness and the wind and the screaming...

This monster is something different, though. Something ancient, something wild. And it wants the most dangerous thing of all from Conor.

It wants the truth."
taken from Goodreads


I'd seen this book around for a while and although being intrigued by it, I hadn't taken the plunge and bought a copy.  Well thank god for Bluewater Waterstone's YA bookclub - it was picked as the September read and so I finally HAD to buy & read it.

The cover and all the illustrations inside are just amazing.  Its all so atmospheric and sets the tone for the book so well.  I love that you get to see details of whats happening, but you don't get every tiny detail, so it still gives your imagination time to build on the world.  I understand a new adult version of the book has been released without the pictures, I really feel this will make the story lose some of its impact.  I also think that the pictures in no way make the book child like, so removing them to make it more adult doesn't seem quite right to me.

From the start of this story you know you are in for a heart breaker.  The lead character Conor is going through so much and no matter what happens you feel that things just seem to be getting worse.  Its not long into the book that you meet 'the monster' and Conor's casual attitude about meeting this thing makes it all the more evident how resigned he is to bad stuff happening.

I love that this book offers so much in so many ways to all of its readers, be it young or old.  It really is incredible that a story can be interpreted by different readers in the way it is meant to for them.  I can imagine children being enthralled by the creepy monster, teens relating to Conor, adults picking which senior characters they agree with. 

I thought it was amazing that the meaning behind the story can also be read in the way that you need it, it could be a horror or it could be a psychological tale.  On this front I could almost see factors that related to Pans Labyrinth.  To this day I'm not completely sure what in that film was real or not and this book definitely has some of that going on.

This is a truly clever, insightful & somewhat tragic story that anyone who has suffered a loss in their life could relate too.   It also acts as a great manual for anyone going through a traumatic time, a cautionary tale of the ways to handle it and the ways not to!!

Rating 4 1/2 Out Of 5

Published In The UK By Walker Books

This Can Be Purchased Here And From All Good Book Sellers

Here is what Bluewater Waterstones Bookclub thought of the book

Sunday 23 September 2012

Letterbox Love (11)

 Letterbox Love Is Hosted By The Fabulous Lynsey over at Narratively Speaking.  Its a fun way for us to showcase our weeks new books here in the UK
Book links will take you to Amazon UK


Another week back in the land of blogging and I am really enjoying it again - YAY!!  Obviously I did just need some time away to sort my head out.  I got a few books through my letterbox this week, so here goes....

Received

From Scholastic
I first heard of this a while ago, and it sounds fantastic

From Harper Voyager
I must admit I am already reading this one, I have heard so much hype about it.  So far really enjoying it too

This one I don't know much about, so interested in reading more about it

Thanks to all that kindly sent / gave me books this week - you all Rock!!

Thursday 20 September 2012

Cover Reveal - UNDONE By Cat Clarke

A while ago now I was invited to a gathering with the Quercus guys.  We all enjoyed drinks and chats, but also got given a sneaky look at the new cover for Cat Clarke's next book Undone.  We were all speechless on the awesomeness of it, and finally today we get to share it with everyone!!


I have to say this is probably my favourite of all of Cat's covers, they are all stunning so say one stands out is pretty impressive.  I love that you can't see the models face.  But also what exactly is happening, is the girl leaping to her demise, is she falling backwards?  All answers I hope will be answered when we finally get to read the book!!

Strange Chemistry News

Lots of exciting news has been coming from Strange Chemistry towers, they really know how to treat us well!

First Up

New Signing BRYONY PEARCE
We are delighted to bring you the news today that we have signed a truly wonderful talent in the form of Bryony Pearce. Her novel The Weight of Souls is due from Strange Chemistry in Autumn 2013, and the deal was made between me and Juliet Mushens of PFD.
ABOUT BRYONY PEARCE
Bryony Pearce completed an English Literature degree at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge in 1998 and afterwards worked in the research industry.  After a while she moved to a village at the edge of the Peak District and went freelance so she could devote more time to writing.  Her first book, the award winning Angel's Fury, was published by Egmont in 2011.  She is now a full time mother to two children, writes as much as possible and enjoys doing school visits and events when she can fit them in.  Her agent is Juliet Mushens at PFD.  For more information on Bryony, please visit her website www.bryonypearce.co.uk and @BryonyPearce
ABOUT THE WEIGHT OF SOULS
16 year old Taylor Oh is cursed: if she is touched by the ghost of a murder victim then they pass a mark beneath her skin. She has three weeks to find their murderer and pass the mark to them - letting justice take place and sending them into the Darkness. And if she doesn't make it in time? The Darkness will come for her... She spends her life trying to avoid ghosts, make it through school where she's bullied by popular Justin and his cronies, keep her one remaining friend, and persuade her father that this is real and that she's not going crazy.
And then Justin is murdered and everything gets a whole lot worse. Justin doesn't know who killed him, so there's no obvious person for Taylor to go after. The clues she has lead her to the V Club, a vicious secret society at her school where no one is allowed to leave... And where Justin was dared to do the stunt which led to his death. Can she find out who was responsible for his murder before the Darkness comes for her? Can she put aside her hatred for her former bully to truly help him? And what happens if she starts to fall for him?

Second Up
Cover Reveal THE HOLDERS By JULIANNA SCOTT
17-year-old Becca has spent her whole life protecting her brother – from their father leaving and from the people who say the voices in his head are unnatural. When two strangers appear with apparent answers to Ryland’s “problem” and details about a school in Ireland where Ryland will not only fit in, but prosper, Becca is up in arms..
She reluctantly agrees to join Ryland on his journey and what they find at St. Brigid’s is a world beyond their imagination. Little by little they piece together information about their family’s heritage and the legend of the Holder race that decrees Ryland is the one they’ve been waiting for—but they are all, especially Becca, in for a surprise that will change what they thought they knew about themselves and their kind.


Wednesday 19 September 2012

Books That Make Me Go Oooooh (51) Mystic City By Theo Lawrence

Waiting On Wednesday is a brilliant book blog feature hosted by Breaking The Spine    

Mystic City By Theo Lawrence
Due For Release October 2012
Published In The UK By Corgi Books
Goodreads LINK
Amazon LINK

"Aria Rose, youngest scion of one of Mystic City's two ruling rival families, finds herself betrothed to Thomas Foster, the son of her parents' sworn enemies. The union of the two will end the generations-long political feud—and unite all those living in the Aeries, the privileged upper reaches of the city, against the banished mystics who dwell below in the Depths. But Aria doesn't remember falling in love with Thomas; in fact, she wakes one day with huge gaps in her memory. And she can't conceive why her parents would have agreed to unite with the Fosters in the first place. Only when Aria meets Hunter, a gorgeous rebel mystic from the Depths, does she start to have glimmers of recollection—and to understand that he holds the key to unlocking her past. The choices she makes can save or doom the city—including herself." taken from Goodreads

I first heard about this book on Monday in a press release from RandomHouse Books.  On reading the press release I believe I Oooed and Ahhhed so much that my Mum actually asked me what I was looking at.  This is so up my street, its like its been made just for me.  Cannot wait to read this as soon as possible.  Also what a STUNNING Cover!

Tuesday 18 September 2012

Review - The Gathering Dark By Leigh Bardugo

"The Shadow Fold, a swathe of impenetrable darkness, crawling with monsters that feast on human flesh, is slowly destroying the once-great nation of Ravka.

Alina, a pale, lonely orphan, discovers a unique power that thrusts her into the lavish world of the kingdom’s magical elite—the Grisha. Could she be the key to unravelling the dark fabric of the Shadow Fold and setting Ravka free?

The Darkling, a creature of seductive charm and terrifying power, leader of the Grisha. If Alina is to fulfil her destiny, she must discover how to unlock her gift and face up to her dangerous attraction to him.

But what of Mal, Alina’s childhood best friend? As Alina contemplates her dazzling new future, why can’t she ever quite forget him?

Glorious. Epic. Irresistible. Romance.
"
taken from Goodreads

I'd been hearing wonderful things about The Gathering Dark for ages and have been eager to read it myself.  Recently I'd lost my passion for reading and hoped this would be just the book to get me back in my groove.  I'm happy to say that this was 100% Successful!!

The cover is stunning.  Everything from the setting, the girl, the scrolls, its all stunning and absolutely fitting to the story.  My only tiny gripe is that the girl seems to be wearing a cape, when really is should be more robe like with sleeves (kefta).  Like I say tiny gripe!!

On starting this I was instantly grabbed by the plot, the characters and the setting.  I instantly wanted to know where the story was going and even found myself plotting out how the story could go (I was completely wrong by the way)

The story turns in a way that lead character Alina ends up meeting new people and going to new places.  I found myself completely relating to Alina and how she felt about new friendships.  Its plain to see that Alina questions why she is being treated different to how she has ever been treated before.  Also she see's the cattiness of girls and wonders what goes on behind her back.  I have totally been in this situation and to be honest I still don't know how to overcome it, so to read of how Alina deals with it was actually helpful!!

Another thing that we deal with in everyday life is the feeling of wanting to be special, to stand out on doing something or having a amazing talent.  I found it quite refreshing to read about a character learning of their special skill and instead of it making them the most popular person, it has a somewhat reverse effect.  I guess for me the story showed that the grass most definitely isn't greener.

Looking back now I see I shouldn't have been shocked but the turn of events of this story had me absolutely shocked.  I was actually pretty saddened that things didn't go quite as I envisaged.  I now see that everything goes as it should and just maybe my judgement should be questioned!!

The conclusion left me incredibly excited and desperate to see what will happen next.  Why is part two not out already??  While I wait for the release I shall be on the hunt for my very own kefta that I can wear, whilst I wait to my next instalment of Alina and the gang

Rating 5 Out Of 5

Published In The UK By Indigo Books

This Can Be Purchased HERE and from good book retailers

Sunday 16 September 2012

Letterbox Love (10)

Letterbox Love Is Hosted By The Fabulous Lynsey over at Narratively Speaking.  Its a fun way for us to showcase our weeks new books here in the UK
Book links will take you to Amazon UK



I haven't done one of these in agesss!  I've not really been reading a whole lot recently and so the blog has taken a back seat.  Life really has been in the way, but slowly I feel like I'm finding my feet again and my passion to blog again (hooray!)

I haven't had time to take pictures, but have everything is still linked!!

Recieved
I love this book & was thrilled to get a snazzy new copy

I've not actually read the first book of this series, but it does sound awesome!!
This sounds EPIC!!  I am so excited to start this!!

Many Thanks to the publishers for sending me these this week!!!

Wednesday 12 September 2012

Book Re-Release - THE PERKS OF BEING A WALLFLOWER

With the eagerly anticipated release of the movie of THE PERKS OF BEING A WALLFLOWER By STEPHEN CHBOSKY coming very soon, the people at Simon & Schuster UK have re-released the book with a gorgeous shiny new cover, exclusive to Waterstones.


'Shy, introspective, intelligent beyond his years, caught between trying to live his life and trying to run from it, Charlie is attempting to navigate through the uncharted territory of high school. The world of first dates and mixed tapes, family dramas and new friends. The world of sex, drugs, and music - when all one requires to feel infinite is that perfect song on that perfect drive. Standing on the fringes of life Charlie has a unique perspective of the world around him, but there comes a time to stop being a wallflower and see what it looks like from the dance floor. This haunting novel about the dilemma of passivity vs. passion has become a modern classic. Charlie's letters are singular and unique, hilarious and devastating and through Charlie, Stephen Chbosky has created a deeply affecting story that will spirit you back to those wild and poignant roller coaster days known as growing up.'

I for one cannot wait to see this movie & hope the adaptation is as fantastic as it looks.  One thing I know for sure is that this new cover ROCKS!!!

Tuesday 11 September 2012

Exciting New Release - THE DARK HEROINE

Today I got an email from those lovely folk at Harper Collins telling me about an exciting new release coming in October.  I Just HAD to share the news with you guys!!

The book is called THE DARK HEROINE By ABIGAIL GIBBS


This is the news that was shared with me - 

As the publishing industry continues to evolve in the face of the digital age, HarperFiction has discovered 18 year-old online sensation and debut novelist Abigail Gibbs, who has been posting The Dark Heroine: Dinner with a Vampire chapter by chapter on Wattpad.com. Having clocked up a phenomenal 17 million reads so far and amassed a huge global fan base online, this, crucially, will be the first time anyone can read the novel’s breathtaking ending.

The Dark Heroine follows sixth-former Violet Lee, who is swept up in a bitter feud between humans and vampires which has lasted centuries after witnessing a bloody massacre in London’s Trafalgar Square, and who becomes political prisoner to the brutally charismatic vampire prince, Kaspar Varn. Feisty, fast-paced and racy, Abigail’s maturity is breath-taking and the unfolding romance between Kaspar and Violet is utterly compelling.

I haven't been lucky enough to read the book yet, but am hoping I will get to devour this soon, watch out for a review soon!!!

Amazon LINK

Monday 10 September 2012

Review - Insignia By S.J.Kincaid

More than anything, Tom Raines wants to be important, though his shadowy life is anything but that. For years, Tom’s drifted from casino to casino with his unlucky gambler of a dad, gaming for their survival. Keeping a roof over their heads depends on a careful combination of skill, luck, con artistry, and staying invisible.

Then one day, Tom stops being invisible. Someone’s been watching his virtual-reality prowess, and he’s offered the incredible—a place at the Pentagonal Spire, an elite military academy. There, Tom’s instincts for combat will be put to the test, and if he passes, he’ll become a member of the Intrasolar Forces, helping to lead his country to victory in World War Three. Finally, he’ll be someone important: a superhuman war machine with the tech skills that every virtual-reality warrior dreams of. Life at the Spire holds everything that Tom’s always wanted—friends, the possibility of a girlfriend, and a life where his every action matters—but what will it cost him?

 


I must be honest - before starting this I hadn't really heard anything about the book.  Although I happily describe myself as a geek and have been known to be a gaming fan, but I've never been into fighting games or anything 'war' like so I wouldn't have actively looked for a book using aspects like that.  Well going by this book I have been seriously missing out!!

The story is set in our future (not so distant by the sounds of it) and we are in world war 3.  The difference though is that wars are no longing held on earth, but in parts of space.  The only fighting that really happens is in game form and that is where our lead character Tom comes in.

His life is pretty miserable - he moves frequently with his gambling Dad and the only thing he really has is his incredible ability to play video games.  Somehow he is head hunted through his gaming prowess and given the most amazing opportunity - to study and become part of the war effort.

This is where Tom really comes into his own.  He finally feels he belongs somewhere and is doing what he is meant to do, and so the story really begins.

I LOVE that this book takes on board that technology and gaming is our future and could quite possibly be the thing that keeps us safe in the future.  So much bad stuff is written about kids and their addiction to games, which yes can go too far but it doesn't seem to be considered that it actually gets people thinking and making them think in different ways to what they normally would.  The situations you face in a game tend to be totally different to what you see in day to day life.  Gaming really shouldn't be frowned upon as much as it seems to be and I loved the service this book pays to that.

Generally I am a fan of paranormal fiction, so books with a science fiction element don't get much of a look in.  This was in lots of ways so exciting, in that reading this seems somewhat feasible and that's quite a thrilling thought - that what you are reading is kind of possible!!

Another thing I LOVE is that the characters are flawed.  So many books you read are about these perfect people that are selfless and generally wonderful.  I'm not saying that these characters are bad, but they aren't saints and that makes them so much more relate able.

I was trying to think what I could compare this to and although its very unique I could see it as a Technology based Harry Potter, with a dash of Top Gun - basically put an incredible combination !!!  This is an Awesome start to what I truly hope continues to be an amazing series.

Rating 4 Out Of 5

Published In The UK By Hot Key Books

This Can Be Purchased HERE and from good book retailers

Wednesday 18 July 2012

Books That Make Me Go Oooooh (50) UNSPOKEN By SARAH REES BRENNAN

Waiting On Wednesday is a brilliant book blog feature hosted by Breaking The Spine   

US cover - UK cover to come
Unspoken By Sarah Rees Brennan
Published In The UK By Simon And Schuster
Due For Release August 2012
Amazon Link
Goodreads Link

"Kami Glass is in love with someone she's never met - a boy the rest of the world is convinced is imaginary. This has made her an outsider in the sleepy English town of Sorry-in-the-Vale, but she doesn't complain. She runs the school newspaper and keeps to herself for the most part - until disturbing events begin to happen. There has been screaming in the woods and the dark, abandoned manor on the hill overlooking the town has lit up for the first time in 10 years. The Lynburn family, who ruled the town a generation ago and who all left without warning, have returned. As Kami starts to investigate for the paper, she finds out that the town she has loved all her life is hiding a multitude of secrets- and a murderer- and the key to it all just might be the boy in her head. The boy who everyone thought was imaginary may be real...and he may be dangerous." taken from Amazon

Anyone that has met / tweeted Sarah Rees Brennan will know she is the coolest, bubbliest, awesome person ever and her writing is just as incredible as her.  I was mega excited to hear that a new book series was on its way and reading the synopsis just made me even more eager to read it.


Tuesday 17 July 2012

Shattered Dreams GIVEAWAY

The Lovely people at Quercus books have offered TWO copies of Shattered Dreams By Ellie James to you lucky lot!!

All you have to do is enter the form below......

Monday 16 July 2012

Guest Post By ELLIE JAMES - SHATTERED DREAMS: Lessons Learned

Shattered Dreams: Lessons Learned



Ellie James, author of Shattered Dreams featuring teenage psychic Trinity Monsour, joins us today to preview a few big lessons coming out of her YA thriller, Shattered Dreams.

Life as a psychic can be rather bizarre, especially when you’re sixteen and living in the most haunted city in America, when everyone in your life was a stranger six months before, when secrets lurk around every corner and every now and then you have these….dreams. Dreams you don’t understand. Without time- or place-stamps. Dreams that terrify.

Dreams that come true.

Oh, yeah, and the wrong guy has a way of showing up at exact the right moment.


1.     Not all dreams end when you wake up.
2.     The truth can be far more dangerous than a dare.
3.     Being on the outside looking in is sometimes far better than being trapped on the inside.
4.     Seeing things that aren’t there doesn’t always mean you’re crazy.
5.     A smile can be the most dangerous disguise.
6.     Nothing is random.
7.     Sometimes when you close your eyes, you can see far better than when they’re open.
8.     Silver is far more than a color.
9.     Just because you don’t remember something doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.
10.  Opening your eyes in the wrong guy’s arms isn’t always…wrong.
11.  Morgues aren’t fun places.
12.  The soul remembers.
13.  Once open, some doors can never be closed.
14.  Only a coward lets fear stand in their way.
15.  A single kiss can change everything.



About Shattered Dreams
The firstborn daughter, of the firstborn daughter, of the firstborn daughter, sixteen year old psychic Trinity Monsour has a connection to the Other Side. She knows secrets and truths she shouldn’t, feels emotions that do not belong to her, and see events that have yet to happen. They come to her as glimpses, shadowy, disjointed snapshots that flicker through her dreams. Some terrify: a girl screaming, a knife lifting, a body in the grass. But others--the dark, tortured eyes and the shattering kiss, the promise of forever--whisper to her soul.
They come without warning. They come without detail.
But they always mean the same thing: The clock is ticking, and only Trinity can stop it.

Find Ellie James on Twitter @EllieJamesMDB