26 February 2015

Review: Famous in Love by Rebecca Serle

She fell in love with him in the books - now she has the chance to star opposite him in the film...

Paige doesn't think she's particularly special, but after getting the starring role in a massive film adaptation of the bestselling Locked trilogy, the rest of the world would disagree. Now she's thrown into the spotlight, and into a world of gossip, rumour and deceit.

The only people who know what she's going through are her two male co-stars, and they can't stand the sight of each other.

Paige knows it's a mistake to fall in love on the set of a movie, but days of on-screen romance and intensity start to change her mind. The question is, can she keep what happens behind the scenes a secret when the world is watching her every move?


Source: Purchase

5 Words: Fame, acting, love, friendship, change.

I'm a little torn about this book. On one hand it was quite fun and enjoyable, but on the other it was a bit lacklustre and felt a little overdone.

Paige was a little annoying at times, and sometimes quite shallow. But then all of a sudden she'd be this amazing, deep character who I loved to read. It was a little frustrating. Why couldn't she be awesome all the time? Instead of just for a few sentences here and there?

And it's safe to say that I wasn't such a fan of Rainer. Could not see the appeal at all. He was just... Add to that the other two guys in this weird love triangle/square/thing and it was just. Meh.

I think this book is more powerful as a standalone, but I can understand why the author wants to drag it out into a trilogy. The ending really stood out, and was probably the best bit of the book, and I think it's a bit of a shame that it won't be left that way. It just seemed so right, and so brave for a YA writer.

24 February 2015

Top Ten Tuesday #26

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish and is a chance for everyone to get to know fellow bloggers and share lists. I love lists. Every week is a different list.

This week is Top Ten Favorite Heroines From Books.

Just let me fangirl a while and then I'll write the list. Promise.

OK... So, in no particular order, meet the heroines that I read again and again. Because I've re-read every one of the books/series so many times since I discovered them I can quote whole passages. AWESOME.


  • Alexia Tarabotti (Parasol Protectorate by Gail Carriger)
  • Celaena Sardothien (Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas)
  • Cassandra Mortmain (I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith)
  • Rayne (Possessing Rayne by Kate Cann)
  • Sophronia Temminnick (Finishing School by Gail Carriger)
  • Lucy Carlyle (Lockwood and Co. by Jonathan Stroud)
  • Caitlin McCann (Lucas by Kevin Brooks)
  • Meg Lytton (Tudor Witch by Victoria Lamb)
  • Hawise (Shadows and Strongholds by Elizabeth Chadwick)
  • Lacey Flint (Lacey Flint by Sharon Bolton)

What about you?


16 February 2015

TOUR - Review and Excerpt: Second Death by Emily Reese

When Meghan Monroe went missing, her twin brother Mike swore to find her. The harder he looked, the less he seemed to find until he came across a book called The Collector. If his hunch is correct, his professor, Claire Wallace, holds the key to finding his sister. But no one knows better than Claire that finding Meghan might be the least of Mike's worries.

After he ignores her warnings to go home and forget about the book, Claire must make a choice: let Mike's discoveries lead him to certain death, or face down her own demons to help him. Knowing The Collector is much more fact than fiction, Claire must decide whether to protect the secret she has kept for eighty years, or reveal her true nature to save another girl from sharing the same dark fate.


Source: Blog Tour | Review Consideration

5 Words: Vampires, family, revenge, cruelty, love.

This was a very different vampire story. And I definitely enjoyed it a lot.

Second Death was very cleverly written and despite how dark the subject matter seemed at times - dark? Maybe I mean grim - it still made me smile and cheered me up a little despite the week I'd had. The story took everything you think you know about vampires from pop culture and turned it on its head. With the help of a vampire lecturer in pop culture. I mean, HOW CLEVER?

It's fair to say that I'm a fan of thrillers. In fact, when my nose isn't stuck in YA or NA or romance it's usually stuck between the pages of some gritty, atmospheric thriller that messes with your mind and makes you cringe. So how pleased was I when I started seeing threads of my dark-fiction-addiction showing up in this story? It was awesome! And I could not put it down.

The characters take a little getting used to. Until you know the motives of each of them, you'll probably be a little confused. But the confusion is worth it when all is revealed. And I'll stop now because I don't want to reveal too much myself.

In short?

This book is highly original and quirky and absolutely unputdownable. Read it. Even if you don't like vampires.

EXCERPT

Below is an excerpt from the beginning of the story. I knew from the very first pages that this was going to be good and it did not disappoint.

Walking home, Erica mulled things over. Kevan seemed halfway decent. That would be awesome for Hailey. She needs a decent guy for once. Passing between the pools of light from the streetlamps, she couldn’t keep herself from smiling. It was a pretty great party.

Fleeting movement from the corner of her vision caused her to pause and look around. Her stomach rolled, like it did when she watched a horror movie. She strained her senses, trying to see something, hear something to explain her trepidation.

“Hello?” There was no response. Erica shook her head and moved along. What would you do if someone answered, you goose? She looked up and noticed one of the streetlights was out. The space of darkness it left filled her with foreboding. “You’re being ridiculous,” she told herself aloud. Head down, she jogged into the darkness.

A bystander would’ve seen a young, brunette woman disappearing into a shadow. If they were close enough, they might have heard a man’s voice whispering.

“Hello, sweetheart.”

12 February 2015

TOUR - Review and Giveaway: Circle of Nine by Valerie Biel

Since I was a little girl I've been labelled a freak in my small town. There’s no blending in when your mom practices an ancient pagan religion and everyone believes she’s a witch. On my 15th birthday my secret wish is the same as always – to just be normal. But that’s not what I get. Not even close.” 
– Brigit Quinn

Instead, Brigit is shocked to learn she’s descended from a legendary Celtic tribe - powerful people who serve as guardians of the stone circles of Ireland. A spellbound book of family history reveals the magical powers of her ancestors. Powers that could be hers - if only she wanted them. 

And when someone sinister and evil returns to steal her family’s strength, Brigit has to make a decision. Fight to keep her unique heritage or reject it for the normal life she’s always wanted.


Source: Blog Tour | Review Consideration

5 Words: Magic, family, love, tradition, history.

This was a gorgeous read. I really really enjoyed it.

When I started, I wasn't sure what to expect. I knew it was going to be interesting, but this book far surpassed everything I expected when I first picked it up. Who ever thought I'd identify so much with a teenage witch?

This book is a perfect blend of contemporary and historical, it takes little hints of mythology and folklore and mixes it with historical fact and a delicious hint of romance.

I would have loved to have experienced more of the book within the book. The characters were all so unique, they all had their own unique voices and really stood out from each other.

QUOTES

With the last of the sun flickering orange light across her face, she hitched up her long skirt and started the steep climb to the stone circle
I would have winked back - that is - if I could. Ever since I was little and tried to wink, it always looked like a painful squint.
Even though she did not look like a grandmother, she definitely had the normal grandmotherly instinct to feed everyone who came within range.
And the upside to being confined to home was that it gave me plenty of time to continue reading.
I was stunned momentarily for two reasons. First, he had used the word love, and although he hadn't said I love you, this came close. Second, the compliment was nice as long as it wasn't some backdoor way of saying I ate like a pig. 
I  was suddenly conscious of my nudity under my robe as the fabric swished against my bare skin. It felt strangely liberating and slightly naughty.

GIVEAWAY

10 February 2015

Top Ten Tuesday #25

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish and is a chance for everyone to get to know fellow bloggers and share lists. I love lists. Every week is a different list.

This week is Top Ten Things I Like/Dislike When It Comes To Romances In Books.

I'm going to do five of each of these, to make it a little more balanced. Plus, it's always good to think positive after a negative. I actually found this trickier than I thought it would be!

Dislikes

  1. Insta-love
    Need I say more? It very, very rarely works.
  2. Fate
    It just smacks of a lack of imagination to me most of the time. When it's "fate" it just happens as opposed to a relationship actually building.
  3. Stockholm Syndrome
    Just... No thank you. I've never liked it, it just makes me feel icky to read and I try to avoid it.
  4. Abuse disguised as love
    I think this one speaks for itself. So he says you can't see that friend of yours because he doesn't like them? He checks up on you a gazillion times an hour? Yeah, very romantic.
  5. Love Triangles
    Now, sometimes these can work. But often they're just a very lazy way of trying to build conflict and tension and it's usually done exactly the same way. Every. Time.

Likes

  1. Passion
    Just let me fan myself with the book for a moment.
  2. A hint of the forbidden
    Not all out Completely Forbidden, just a little touch of it.
  3. Tender moments
    You know, the little things that show the love between the two characters
  4. Friendship turned love
    When that bond between two people is just THAT strong and you know that they're prefect together but they're hesitant because they make such good friends... To be best friends with your soul mate is amazing.
  5. Anticipation
    You know when you know it's coming but it builds so slowly that you're just about screaming at the page for them to GET IT ON ALREADY? Freaking love it.

What's your favourite Romance?




04 February 2015

Review: Crow's Row by Julie Hockley

For college student Emily Sheppard, the thought of spending a summer alone in New York is much more preferable than spending it in France with her parents. Just completing her freshman year at Callister University, Emily faces a quiet summer in the city slums, supporting herself by working at the campus library. During one of her jogs through the nearby cemetery while visiting her brother Bill's grave, Emily witnesses a brutal killing-and then she blacks out. When Emily regains consciousness, she realizes she's been kidnapped by a young crime boss and his gang. She is hurled into a secret underworld, wondering why she is still alive and for how long.

Held captive in rural Vermont, she tries to make sense of her situation and what it means. While uncovering secrets about her brother and his untimely death, Emily falls in love with her very rich and very dangerous captor, twenty-six year- old Cameron. She understands it's a forbidden love and one that won't allow her to return to her previous life. But love may not be enough to save Emily when no one even knows she is missing.


Source: Purchase

5 Words: drugs, kidnap, murder, lies, insta-love.

Lets take a girl who is rebelling against her rich parents by selfishly taking a full scholarship at a college (despite the fact that there is DEFINITELY someone far more deserving than her who can't afford it who's losing their place because of her) and living in a room the actual dimensions and a mattress just because... Uh... Yeah, I'm not sure. I think she just didn't like her parents because they sent away her POS drug-dealing brother to live with his POS drug-dealing uncle. Because parents who sent away the bad and dangerous influences in their young daughter's life SUCK.

Anyway.

Lets now add a complete creep who has been stalking her for six years and knows everything about her. He's even trained his dog its whole life to track down her scent. How freaking romantic? This dog thinks Find-Emily is the best game EVER. And he's handsome of course. Something about his eyes.

And so they meet. And she's instantly infatuated and in love.

Because crazy stalker criminals are just irresistible.

I'll stop now and just review. I think you've got the picture and I wouldn't want to ruin the completely predictable story of forbidden-insta-love for you.

This book isn't terribly written, it's just that it's a pretty terrible idea. It all felt a little rushed. I'm all for fast paced tales of drama and danger, but this was too fast to be feasible even if you completely suspended disbelief.

This book could have been so much more.

That said, I read it pretty quickly considering what else I've been doing. As I said, the writing is actually pretty damn good. And I will read on in the same way I read on with FSoG, to see just how screwed up it can actually get.

Oh, and I liked the ending. Even if it was hideously predictable. 

03 February 2015

Top Ten Tuesday #24

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish and is a chance for everyone to get to know fellow bloggers and share lists. I love lists. Every week is a different list.

This week is Top Ten Books I Can't Believe I Haven't Read.

Yet.

This is usually quite a long list for me, filled with classics. But the good news is that I'm slowly culling off those classics so I'm going to aim for the newer ones this time. Now, some of these are sitting on my shelves/kindle already, the others are languishing on my ever-growing TBR, and I really really want to read them all.
  1. Cinder by Marissa Meyer
  2. The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith
  3. A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin
  4. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
  5. Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire
  6. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
  7. The Red Queen's Daughter by Jacqueline Kolosov
  8. The Summer Queen by Elizabeth Chadwick
  9. You Don't Have to Say You Love Me by Sarra Manning
  10. Dearly, Departed by Lia Habel

Any of these made your list?



01 February 2015

NETBA Review: She is Not Invisible

Laureth Peak's father is a writer. For years he's been trying, and failing, to write a novel about coincidence. His wife thinks he's obsessed, Laureth thinks he's on the verge of a breakdown. He's supposed to be doing research in Austria, so when his notebook shows up in New York, Laureth knows something is wrong.

On impulse she steals her mother's credit card and heads for the States, taking her strange little brother Benjamin with her. Reunited with the notebook, they begin to follow clues inside, trying to find their wayward father. Ahead lie challenges and threats, all of which are that much tougher for Laureth than they would be for any other 16-year old. Because Laureth Peak is blind.


Source: Purchase

5 Words: Coincidence, blindness, drama, family, searching.

When I first finished this book I though Damn, that was good.

But now I've had a chance to think. And I'm thinking, maybe it's not so good.

So now I'm all confused. Time for a Good vs. Bad review so I can sort my feelings out.

THE GOOD
The pace - this book builds and builds to an excellent, exciting ending. It was an interesting idea, for sure, and it even made me think about going off and researching. Also, Laureth was pretty amazing. I'm sure she'd say she's just normal, but managing to do what she did, face what she faced, that'd be exceptional for anyone.

THE BAD
It felt like it was trying too hard. Way too hard. It was like there was this idea and it was played out until it almost hurt to read. And Benjamin's thing was just a little too convenient too.

THE RESULT
OK, so maybe I was being a little hard on this. It was pretty good overall and I really enjoyed it while I read it.

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