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Showing posts from April, 2013

April review

A odd month for me reading wise. I spent a third of it reading and reviewing like a lunatic, a third reading but actively not reviewing anything and a third where I barely read anything. I bet you can guess which bit of the month was the one where I was off work! If I'm honest at the moment I'm struggling to get anything read. I'm feeling quite overwhelmed with 2nd / 3rd books in a series where I can't remember the first books well enough to be able to carry on with the series and been left with the dilemma of needing to find time to reread or just giving up the series completely. I think I'm also really struggling with samey NA titles from US authors. Seriously considering giving those up too! On the plus side my insane reading binge has given me a chance to really clear down my TBR piles meaning I am now only left with some very very exciting titles I am desperate to read. Books Read 63) Parallel by Lauren Miller 64) Boy Nobody by Allen Zadoff 65) Noble Confl

Review: This is what Happy looks like by Jennifer E Smith

If fate sent you an email, would you answer? In This is What Happy Looks Like , Jennifer E. Smith's new YA novel, perfect strangers Graham Larkin and Ellie O'Neill meet—albeit virtually—when Graham accidentally sends Ellie an email about his pet pig, Wilbur. In the tradition of romantic movies like "You've Got Mail" and "Sleepless in Seattle," the two 17-year-olds strike up an email relationship, even though they live on opposite sides of the country and don't even know each other's first names. Through a series of funny and poignant messages, Graham and Ellie make a true connection, sharing intimate details about their lives, hopes and fears. But they don't tell each other everything; Graham doesn't know the major secret hidden in Ellie's family tree, and Ellie is innocently unaware that Graham is actually a world-famous teen actor living in Los Angeles. When the location for the shoot of Graham's new film falls t

Review: Heroic by Phil Earle

For the past five weeks I'd prayed that I'd never see my brother's name spelt out in poppies. In the weeks that followed I often wished I had.' Jammy and Sonny McGann are brothers, but that's where the similarities end. One is calm when the other is angry; one has a plan while the other lives purely in the moment. When Jammy returns from Afghanistan a very different man to the one who left, it's Sonny who is left to hold things together. But just how far will he go to save the brother who always put him first? Inspired by S.E. Hinton's "The Outsiders" and by the battles facing young soldiers all over the world, this is a devastating novel about brotherhood and sacrifice, from the award-winning author of "Being Billy" and "Saving Daisy" My Thoughts This is a hard one for me to review mainly because I'm not sure I can quite do this book justice due to the subject matter and how close to home it is to me pe

Blog Tour: Heroic by Phil Earle

I am really pleased today to be able to offer you an extract of Phil Earle's excellent Heroic to read. Enjoy Note to all: I am failing hard at Windows 8 after being forced to buy a new laptop this week. If the embedding thing doesn't work above please follow this link for the extract

Review: The Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare

Danger and betrayal, secrets and enchantment in the breathtaking conclusion to the Infernal Devices trilogy Tessa Gray should be happy - aren't all brides happy? Yet as she prepares for her wedding, a net of shadows begins to tighten around the Shadowhunters of the London Institute. A new demon appears, one linked by blood and secrecy to Mortmain, the man who plans to use his army of pitiless automatons, the Infernal Devices, to destroy the Shadowhunters. Mortmain needs only one last item to complete his plan. He needs Tessa. And Jem and Will, the boys who lay equal claim to Tessa's heart, will do anything to save her. My Thoughts This is less a review and more my random rumblings about how much I loved this book and series. I must admit as much as I love mortal instruments I do prefer infernal devices just that little bit more. I think it appeals to the history geek inside of me and I love the characters at the centre of the story. I raced through book one and t

Review: Going Vintage by Lindsey Leavitt

Sixteen-year-old Mallory loves her boyfriend, Jeremy. Or at least likes him more than she's ever liked any other boy. She's suree feels the same way. Until she happens upon his online Authentic Life game and discovers he's cheating on her Mallory's life is falling apart and technology is the cause. And then she finds a list, written by her grandma when she was Mallory's age. All her grandma had to worry about was sewing dresses and planning dinner parties. Things were so much simpler in the 1960s. And there's nothing on the list that Mallory couldn't do herself. Maybe it's time for Mallory to go vintage and find the answers to her modern-day problems. My Thoughts Going vintage is a really cute story which I really enjoyed with some really thoughtful ideas behind it. Mallory thinks she has it all with her perfect boyfriend. That is until the mday when is inadvertently finds out he has been cheating on her online with a cyber w

Review: By any other name by Laura Jarratt

Nobody can know the truth - her life depends on it. I picked up the book and thumbed through the pages. Names in alphabetical order, names with meanings, names I knew, names I'd never heard of. How to pick? Nothing that would stand out, nothing that would link me to the past - those were the instructions. The past. As if everything that had gone before this moment was buried already. Holly is fifteen years old, but she's only been "Holly" for a matter of months. Because of something that happened, she and her family have had to enter witness protection and have all assumed new identities. All, that is, except her sister Katie, who is autistic. Starting at a new school mid-term is hard enough at the best of times, and Holly has no clue who she is any more. Lonely and angry, she reaches out to friends - new and old. But one wrong move will put all their lives in danger.. My Thoughts I really enjoyed this book quite a lot for a variety of reasons. For

Review: Wild Boy by Rob Lloyd Jones

London, 1841 A boy covered in hair, raised as a monster, condemned to life in a travelling freak show. A boy with extraordinary powers of observation and detection. A boy accused of murder; on the run; hungry for the truth. BEHOLD THE SAVAGE SPECTACLE OF WILD BOY!! LAdies and Gentlemen, take your seats. The show is about to begin. My Thoughts A really enjoyable read for me Wild boy is the story of a young boy during the victorian period who is hairy all over and as a consequence has had to spend his life as an outcast and ending up living and working as a freak in a traveling show. For me this book had several things about it. Firstly the plight of wild boy was a story I feel will stick with me for a long while to come. He is treated badly by peers and strangers purely for being slightly different and therefore lives his life ostriacised from normal people. The toll this has on the way he thinks and feels about himself is at times quite heartbreaking. Secondly I loved se

Blog lovin

Follow my blog with Bloglovin I've just decided to find out more about blog lovin after it dawned on me maybe I ought to due to all the stuff happening around GFC and google reader which I'm not quite sure I understand yet! Anyways please follow me on there and I'll try and work out what is going on.

Review: Diary of a crush series by Sarra Manning

This is less a review but more a fan girl sess about a series I was so excited to finally read in its entirity. The Diary of a Crush series first appeared in J17 when I was a teenager and I remember reading it back then in snatches although I never quite managed to read it all. My lovely friend Clover gave me the three books in March and I quite literally read them back to back in a matter of hours For those of you who don't know the series are as follows French Kiss When Edie and Dylan first see each other in photography class, an instant attraction draws them together. But true love never does run smoothly—the two spar as much as they can't keep their hands off each other. Then comes the college trip to Paris: Edie's willpower will be tested to the limit! In between furious arguments and trips to the Louvre, the two share some passionate moments—but will it last? Kiss and Make up It's sizzling summertime, and Edie can't wait for the partyin

Blog Tour: By any other name by Laura Jarratt (Q&A with Holly and Joe)

Q and A with Holly and Joe from BY ANY OTHER NAME 1.       So first impressions, how important are they? Holly: In general, very, I think. But obviously you can get it really, really wrong. It came as quite a big surprise to me that you can find a boy attractive for a while but actually a bit further down the line, there’s just nothing there. Not even like it fizzles out – just that you were wrong and there wasn’t anything to start off with. Joe: Don’t know, to be honest. I would have said very important but like Holly says, you can get it wrong. I suppose you should take your time to get to know someone and not leap to conclusions too quickly. 2.       City or village life – which would you pick? Holly: You know, ‘village’ has sort of grown on me. There are good things and bad things about it. I still don’t like that part where everyone is into everyone else’s business, or how petty some of the people in school are. But people smile at each other in the

Review: The Boys of Summer by CJ Duggan

It seemed only natural to nickname them the ‘Onslow Boys’. Every time they swaggered in the front door of the Onslow Hotel after a hard week’s work, their laughter was loud and genuine as they settled onto their bar stools. I peeked through the restaurant partition, a flimsy divider between my world and theirs. I couldn’t help but smile whenever I saw them, saw him ... Toby Morrison. Quiet seventeen-year-old Tess doesn’t relish the thought of a summertime job. She wants nothing more than to forget the past haunts of high school and have fun with her best friends before the dreaded Year Twelve begins. To Tess, summer is when everything happens: riding bikes down to the lake, watching the fireworks at the Onslow Show and water bomb fights at the sweltering Sunday markets. How did she let her friends talk her into working? After first-shift disasters, rude, wealthy tourists and a taunting ex-boyfriend, Tess is convinced nothing good can come of working her summer away. Ho

Bookcase Showcase: Fiona from Bookish Outsider

My name is Fi from Bookish Outsider and I'm a bookaholic! It's only natural I suppose when you grow up in a house full of books, both of your parents were big readers, you study English Literature and work in numerous bookshops! These pictures will prove that when it comes to books I have slight hoarding tendencies, once I buy a book I'm unable to be parted from it except for the very rare occasion when I really didn't like something. This first picture is most of my YA hardbacks. I used to buy mainly paperbacks but I got tired of waiting months after the hardback was published so my obsession with those beautiful smaller sized hardcovers started! There's a great mix of authors here, from Kelly Creagh to John Green to Marie Lu as I tend to jump around from genre to genre. The second picture is a small sample of my adult hardbacks, mainly authors that are autobuy for me such as Stephen King, Phil Rickman, Terry Pratchett and Juliet Marrillier.

Month of Men Blog Tour: Jennifer echols guest post: A Day in the Life

I get up at 4:30 a.m. You already hate me, I know. It's just that I discovered while in college that I am terrible at pulling an all-nighter and cramming for exams, whereas I am very good at falling asleep at a strangely early hour, getting up alert and cheery at 4:30 a.m., and cramming then. A lot of authors seem to need that unbroken quiet time when their families are asleep and leave them alone. They romantically stay up late with their candles and their wine, burning the midnight oil to unlock their most creative selves. I am like that too, except with coffee instead of wine, and at 4:30 a.m. This is when the magic happens, people. The creative process comes to a screeching halt when my son wakes up at 6:30. For about an hour we cook and eat breakfast, make fun of the cat, and write rap songs about bacon and butter. After I drop off the kid at school, I go for a run. If I am training for a marathon, like last year, this may take a few hours and it's very

Review: The Bunker Diaries by Kevin Brooks

I can't believe I fell for it. It was still dark when I woke up this morning. As soon as my eyes opened I knew where I was. A low-ceilinged rectangular building made entirely of whitewashed concrete. There are six little rooms along the main corridor. There are no windows. No doors. The lift is the only way in or out. What's he going to do to me? What am I going to do? If I'm right, the lift will come down in five minutes. It did. Only this time it wasn't empty . . . My thoughts Quite honestly I don't have huge amounts to say about this book. I read it and it only took a few hours. It was OK but not mind blowing like I thought it would be. I often like books written in diary format but in this case I didn't really feel like there was much to tell. I didn't feel like I got to know the characters all that well and ultimately I didn't feel like there was a point to the entire book because of how it ended. It definitely did capture the feel of

Review: Hank Zipzer, the World's Greatest Underachiever and the Crazy Classroom Cascade by Henry Winkler and Lin Oliver

I must admit this is not the sort of book I normally read as it is aimed at a much younger audience than the books I read however I must say I really enjoyed it. I picked this up recently because I had the opportunity to meet the author at an event with my local book group. For those of you who haven't made the connection this book is written by Henry Winkler who is more better known as the actor who played the Fonz in Happy Days. He is dyslexic and co writes this series to raise awareness of dyslexia and learning difficulties and to encourage youngsters that while they might not be the best at Maths or English there is something inside of them that they are brilliant at and their job is to work out what they gift is. Quite honestly I have never been so inspired at an event like this after listening to Henry's take on the world and the way he has learn to find ways around his difficu