Wednesday 20 March 2013

Meeting Stephenie Meyer

I'm a fangirl.  I am more than happy to admit this to anyone.  I'm into a lot of fandoms past and present.  I quite happily go to conventions and signings of all sorts to meet the people that have created the worlds I love so much.  I've been fortunate enough to meet a lot of my idols, so when I heard that Stephenie Meyer was making a very rare appearance in the UK, I was compelled to go.

It seemed for a while that I wouldn't be able to attend and although I put this down to fate and what was meant to be, I was kind of gutted that I couldn't go.  Then at the last minute, things fell into place and I could go.  I was big fan of fate again now I was getting to do what I really wanted.

So accompanied by my ever patient Mum we travelled along to Waterstones at Piccadilly Circus at 10am - the signing wasn't till 6pm and we only live about an hour away.  We were in for a seriously long wait!!!  But were numbers 23 and 24 in the queue.

Once again luck was on our side and we had the best weather of the year so far.  So although the pavement being rather hard, the day was pretty pleasant. 
We got to hang out with an old friend that I haven't seen for quite some time and had an awesome queue buddy in the form of Caroline from Big Book Little Book.  Although we brought books along to read, I didn't open my book once.  We were far to busy gossipping and getting over excited!!

I also got to have a lovely chat with Waterstones bookseller and fellow book blogger Nicole from The Reluctant Hypersomniac

Being in the queue was a joy, getting to see lots of familiar faces from my convention life and from my book blogging life.  It was like a huge collision of all my favourite things.

The long queue time went surprisingly quickly and in no time we were being ushered into the store to get into the proper signing queue.  It was really exciting to see the press photographers in their pen waiting for Stephenie just as we were.

 When the cheers started and the cameras started flashing I knew Stephenie had arrived.  Sadly at this point I couldn't see a thing, being 5 foot and standing in a corner my view wasn't great.  I could live with that though, I knew my turn was soon to come.

As I got to the table I really didn't know what to say.  I knew my meeting would be brief, so I had to make it count for something and so this is what I said -

Me - Thanks so much for this
Stephenie - Oh its a pleasure
Me - I do have to tell you though, that only two authors have made me cry and you have managed to make me cry twice, so well done
Stephenie - Oh I'm sorry, but I hope it was in a good way
Me - Oh definitely, I think any author that manages to bring about psychical reactions must have a done a pretty good job, so all is good
Stephenie - Well then I am thrilled
Me - Thanks again

 And that was it - my 7 hours in the queue and although short I got to say exactly what I wanted.  Stephenie was an absolute joy to meet and I'm thrilled to be able to tick another of my idols of my to meet list.

My rather awkward photo, but hey its me and Stephenie!!!

Massive Thanks to Waterstones, Atom, Little Brown Books, The Host UK movie team and most importantly Stephenie.  My day was amazing!!

Monday 18 March 2013

Review: Requiem By Lauren Oliver

This is the third book in the series, so spoilers are possible...

Battling against a society in which love has been declared a disease, Lena now finds herself at the centre of a fierce revolution. But the Wilds are no longer the haven they once were as the government seeks to stamp out the rebels. And Lena's emotions are in turmoil following the dramatic return of someone she thought was lost forever...  taken from Goodreads

I was quite nervous on reading this book.  I adored Delirium, but wasn't as blown away by Pandemonium so I really wanted to love Requiem but was prepared to not like it as much as I wanted.  I actually ended up feeling a bit of both - weird I know!...

I loved that this story was being told from two very different perspectives - uncured Lena and cured Hana.  The lives of both are completely different as are their views, so alternating chapters of these parallels were so absorbing and fascinating.  I had trouble deciding which life would be the more favourable.  It was easy to tell which life would be easier but which life would really be better that took some major thought.  Given time it was actually an easy choice.  Although I hope we are never put in that kind of situation.

The end - oh I feel somewhat confused.  We did get an end, an end that was very enjoyable.  But it was over extremely quickly, the conclusion didn't take long to happen.  And when it did end, it wasn't exactly thorough.  You don't find out what happens in the long run, which bothers me.  I'm hoping that Lauren has some idea of extending on the story but maybe with different characters.  I'm also torn as to whether the events that took place would really have had that great an effect in the future.  Like I said I'm confused.

Although my reservations I did really enjoy this instalment of Lena's story and found it hard to put down.  I just can't help but want more!!  I am super eager to see what Lauren thinks up next. 

Rating 4 Out Of 5

Published In The UK By Hodder And Stoughton

This Can Be Purchased HERE and From All Good Book Sellers.

Wednesday 13 March 2013

Review: Warm Bodies By Isaac Marion

"'R' is a zombie. He has no name, no memories, and no pulse, but he has dreams. He is a little different from his fellow Dead. Amongst the ruins of an abandoned city, R meets a girl. Her name is Julie and she is the opposite of everything he knows - warm and bright and very much alive, she is a blast of colour in a dreary grey landscape. For reasons he can't understand, R chooses to save Julie instead of eating her, and a tense yet strangely tender relationship begins. This has never happened before. It breaks the rules and defies logic, but R is no longer content with life in the grave. He wants to breathe again, he wants to live, and Julie wants to help him. But their grim, rotting world won't be changed without a fight..." taken from goodreads

I've been intrigued by this book for ages, but with the amount of amazing books out there its one that I hadn't gotten round to reading.  When I found out the book was being adapted into a movie, I found it the push I needed to actually read it.

I can't say I've read many zombie themed books, making my reading experience fairly fresh and new.  Obviously I expected dead, flesh eating creatures but other than that I wasn't sure how the book would pan out. 

I loved the idea of this kind of being a Romeo and Juliet reworking in a totally new setting.  R somehow decides he doesn't like his zombie life anymore and wants to live.  With the help of living girl Julie, they try to make it work.  Its a brilliant concept but I have to say I just didn't get how this would come about.  I didn't see that a living person would find any attraction to or understanding of a living dead person, especially knowing and seeing what these people are capable of.  Actually writing that makes me feel somewhat racist against the zombies and I actually feel guilty.  I think that is one of the things that make this book great - it makes you think.  It definitely made me think of a post apocalyptic world and how we would cope.  It made me think of inbuilt prejudice that came quite easily to me, which I do regret.

The more you learn of R and Julie, the more you are drawn to both of their characters and their relationship.  I felt I judged them way to early and although it seemed impossible to me, they actually built an incredible relationship that was not only clever, but kind of beautiful too.

The conclusion was more than I could have hoped for.  I can't say I 100% know how things happened in the way they did, but I can say that I did enjoy it.  I think it would be quite interesting to read a companion story that maybe went into what happened some time after, on a more wide spread scale.

Rating 3 1/2 Out Of 5

Published In The UK By Vintage Books

This Can Be Purchased HERE and from good book sellers

Friday 1 March 2013

Review - Zom-B By Darren Shan

Zom-B is a radical new series about a zombie apocalypse, told in the first person by one of its victims. The series combines classic Shan action with a fiendishly twisting plot and hard-hitting and thought-provoking moral questions dealing with racism, abuse of power and more. This is challenging material, which will captivate existing Shan fans and bring in many new ones. As Darren says, "It's a big, sprawling, vicious tale...a grisly piece of escapism, and a barbed look at the world in which we live. Each book in the series is short, fast-paced and bloody. A high body-count is guaranteed!" taken from goodreads

I've been meaning to read Darren Shan's work for many years now and with the launch of his new zom-b series I thought it was the perfect time to start.

The cover is just AMAZING!!  If this doesn't catch your eye, nothing ever will.  Its brutal, grotesque and ever so awesome.  Its just genius!!

One of the first things I noticed about this book was its compact size.  I love the idea of these books being released in instalments and so you get it in easily digestible (excuse the pun) lots.  It makes it a great quick read for the likes of me, but also makes it more appealing to the reluctant reader. 

After hearing about Darren's love of horror I was kind of expecting the book to be horror filled from beginning to end, I was in for a surprise.  Yes there is a bit of Zombie action at the start and loads at the end, but the middle really is about building a world for the main characters to exist and see how they adapt to a new world.

Darren actually hits on some huge current issues that I really didn't expect to be in a horror story.  I found myself liking characters and then changing my mind due to their actions, then finding out more about their backgrounds and feeling sorry for them.  I wasn't prepared to feel so much from a 'horror' story, it was a great revelation to me.

The story comes with some amazing twists and turns, that were very unexpected for me.  I do love a surprise!!!

There were a few loose ends which I am very intrigued by and also wondering where the next book will start from as the conclusion definitely left me thinking where next??

I'm so glad to have finally read some of 'The Master of Horrors' work and was not disappointed what so ever.  However I do know, I really wouldn't like to meet any of Darren's characters in a dark alley!!!

Rating 4 Out Of 5

Published By Simon And Schuster

This Can Be Purchased HERE and from all good book sellers