Friday, 27 January 2012

The Iron Knight by Julie Kagawa

Received for review

Paperback: 368 pages

  • Publisher: Mira Ink (6 Jan 2012)
  • Language English
  • ISBN-10: 1848450605
  • ISBN-13: 978-1848450608He gave up everything. All for a girl... and all for nothing. To emotionless faery prince Ash, love was a weakness for mortals and fools. His own love had died a horrible death, killing any gentler feelings the Winter prince might have had. Or so he thought. Then Meghan Chase a half human, half fey smashed through his barricades, binding him to her irrevocably with his oath to be her knight. And when all of Faery nearly fell to the Iron fey, she severed their bond to save his life. Meghan is now the Iron Queen, ruler of a realm where no Winter or Summer fey can survive. With the company of his archrival, Summer Court prankster Puck, and infuriating talking cat Grimalkin, Ash begins a journey he is bound to see through to its end a quest to find a way to honour his solemn vow to stand by Meghan's side.
  • Thanks to MiraInk for sending this to me for review.
Cover:  Another beautiful cover to end this series. I love that it has both Ash and Puck on it. 

4.5/5 stars.  For me this is without the best in the series.  I wasn't overly keen on the first three books but I know this is becasue I didn't care for the heroine Meghan at all and the books are in her perspective, but the highlight for me in the first three was Ash and so with The Iron Knight being in his perspective I loved it. 
Ash is such a secretive, closed off character in the other books so it's great to be given this insight into his thoughts and feelings that he rarely ever lets himself show due to his Unseelie Court upbringing. 

I'm way to biased for this review because of how much I love Ash so I was going to love this book no matter what but I have to say that it wasn't perfect.  It was a little slow in places and I wish the reunion had been a little longer- after the long quest I felt I wanted a sweeter reunion but it was still good.
Originally the series was going to end on The Iron Queen and I can definitely say that if it had done so I would have been seriously disappointed.  This book was needed to round off the series, and it does it so well.
I'd absolutely say pick this up if you've picked up the other three and stick with them until you get to this one because it's worth it!

Thursday, 26 January 2012

Booking Through Thursday

Booking Through Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by Booking Through Thursday and a different question is posted every week.

What’s more important: Good writing? Or a good story?
(Of course, a book should have BOTH, but…)

Of course both play a crucial part in the book but I would say good writing is pivotal.  If the writing is bad it then distracts me from the story because all I am thinking is "Oh no the writing is so bad...OMG no, nooooo" and not "What a wonderfully original plot".  For example Wake Unto Me by Lisa Cach, the plot should have been everything I love in a book, romance, history, paranormal...but it was so slow that I couldn't get into the story at all.

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

I Have a New Additction!

Ok so as many of you will probably know if you watch any of my YouTube Videos, I got a Kindle for Christmas from my lovely Mother, and to get used to reading on it I downloaded a load of the freebies.  I read a few short romances on there and have now become addicted to downloading the free ebooks.  A lot of the classics are free too, and I finally got some of them that I have been dying to read for a really long time.  So all in all EPICNESS!!!!  Only now I'm worried my review schedule is going down the tubes because I'm reading this freebies (that I won't be reviewing) so...yeah.
Have any of you guys got this obsession?  I'd love to know, so please comment below!

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is all about sharing the books that I'm eagerly waiting to be released.

This week the book I am waiting on is Under The Never Sky, released here in the UK on the 7th February.

I've heard GREAT things about this dystopian novel so can't wait to check it out for myself.

Thursday, 19 January 2012

Booking Through Thursday

Booking Through Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by Booking Through Thursday and a different question is posted every week.

Do you skip ahead in a book? Do you feel badly about it when you do?

I don't skim or skip ahead in books.  I don't know I don't but I just don't lol. 

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is all about sharing the books that I'm eagerly waiting to be released.

This week the book that I'm waiting on is Harbinger by Sara Wilson Etienne released on 2nd February.

Cover love for me with this book I'm afraid.  It's just gorgeous! It sounds amazing too so I can't wait for this one.

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

  • Received for review
  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Quirk Books (7 Jun 2011)
  • Language English
  • ISBN-10: 1594744769
  • ISBN-13: 978-1594744761

A mysterious island. An abandoned orphanage. And a strange collection of very curious photographs. It all waits to be discovered in "Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children", an unforgettable novel that mixes fiction and photography in a thrilling reading experience. As our story opens, a horrific family tragedy sets sixteen-year-old Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear that the children who once lived here - one of whom was his own grandfather - were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a desolate island for good reason. And somehow - impossible though it seems - they may still be alive. A spine-tingling fantasy illustrated with haunting vintage photography, "Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children" will delight adults, teens, and anyone who relishes an adventure in the shadows.

Thanks so much to Quirk for sending me this for review.

Cover: A perfect cover for this book.  The eeriness of the photo sums up what this book is about, as well as the photos throughout the book.

Plot:  When Jacob was younger he believed in his grandfather's unbelievable stories.  But soon grew out of them.  But his grandfather's cryptic last words at his brutal death throw Jacob into a tailspin and starts him searching for something that will show his grandfather's fantastic stories were anything but fiction.  But danger lurks around the corner.

I saw this book everywhere in the blogsphere a few months ago for its release in the US so when I was given the chance to receive it for review I jumped at the chance.
I found it took a while to get into a dragged for the first 100 pages or so.  For those pages I wasn't gripped or very interested in the story.  But then gradually the pace picked up and I was a lot more invested in the story.  The photographs were interwoven expertly well and added a whole new level to the story.
I really enjoyed that the book was from Jacob's perspective.  Most fiction that I read is in a female's point of view so it's always refreshing to come across one from a guy's perspective, and Jacob's character and his dilemmas are really interesting- was his grandfather telling the truth or is Jacob loosing her mind?
The peculiar children were a really great concept.  I don't want to spoil anything for anyone but it was really different.  I was reading something completely new and I loved it for that.
A lot was left open for book 2.  When I finished I was not satisfied at all but I understand that these questions will be covered in book 2 but I felt that it took so long for it get going and then it suddenly ends with all these unanswered questions that it left me a little frustrated and unsatisfied but of course I hope to read book 2 because I definitely NEED to know what happens.
Overall I would give this book 3.5/5 stars.  Just because of the slow start and how I felt when I finished it.  I would say to give this book a try sometime.  It's definitely different and I am excited for book2 because I was left with this need to have my questions answered but I loved the whole concept of the peculiar children and really enjoyed that part of the plot.  Ransom Riggs has done something extraordinary in that he has written this book that will appeal to both YA and adult readers.

Saturday, 14 January 2012

Heart On A Chain by Cindy C. Bennett

  • Paperback: 322 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace (December 22, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1456492411
  • ISBN-13: 978-1456492410

17-year-old Kate has lived her whole life in abject poverty, with an alcoholic father and drug-addicted mother, who severely abuses Kate. At school, her second-hand clothing marks her as a target. Her refusal to stand up for herself makes her the recipient of her classmates taunts and bullying. That is, until Henry returns. Henry Jamison moved away six years earlier, just as he and Kate had begun to develop feelings for one another. He returns to find the bright, funny, outgoing girl he had known now timidly hiding in corners, barely speaking to anyone around her, suspicious of even him. Kate can't figure out what game Henry is playing with her - for surely it is a game. What else would the gorgeous, popular boy from her past want with her? Kate finally decides to trust Henry's intentions, opening her heart to him. Just when it seems he might be genuine in his friendship, tragedy strikes, threatening everything Kate has worked so hard to gain. Can Henry help her to overcome this new devastation, or will it tear them apart forever?

A huge thank you to Cindy for sending this to me, I am so grateful.

Cover: Cute cover, the swing and necklace make sense after reading.

5/5 stars!  I loved the first Cindy C. Bennett book I read, Geek Girl I loved everything about it, so naturally I had high expectations with this book and boy were they met!  I am trying to be objective in this review but I can't because I just loved it SO much.  It's a beautiful, poignant book that captivated me from the very beginning.  
I really felt for Kate, she has a horrible home life but she still wasn't a whiny character (even though in that situation self pity would be justified) but rather strong even if she does get scared (but who wouldn't?).  
Henry is just perfect.  Cute.  Sweet. Protective.  Funny.  He doesn't tolerate how people bully Kate and sets out to stop it.
Their romance is sweet, and you really get the feeling that they're friends too which gives it a realistic feel.  
The main point of this book is that you care about the characters your reading. I couldn't put this book down because I was compelled to keep reading, so I read it in just one day.
I would definitely recommend this book to fans of YA contemporary.  This has become one of my favourite books and I know I will re-read it over and over because it has a timeless feel to it for me.

Thursday, 12 January 2012

Christmas Book Haul/In My Mailbox Part 2

Booking Through Thursday

Booking Through Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by Booking Through Thursday and a different question is posted every week.

1. What’s your favorite time of day to read?
The afternoon, 12-4pm is my peak concentration time.

2. Do you read during breakfast? (Assuming you eat breakfast.)
I don't read while I eat at all, I don't want to get food on my books.

3. What’s your favorite breakfast food? (Noting that breakfast foods can be eaten any time of day.)
Brioche, which I do like to eat at any time of the day.

4. How many hours a day would you say you read?
Definitely depends.  Week days I have college and homework etc so don't have much time to read, so about 2 hours a day but weekends I make more time for reading so about 4-5 hours.

5. Do you read more or less now than you did, say, 10 years ago?
I do read more now, I think it's because there is so much more choice in what I like to read now, more and more coming out all of the time and so consequently I read more.

6. Do you consider yourself a speed reader?
No because I know a few people that read faster than I do.  I can read very fast, for example Kiss of Snow

7. If you could have any superpower, what would it be?

Flying...because I think it would be so exhilarating.
8. Do you carry a book with you everywhere you go?
Whatever book I'm reading is normallly with me.

9. What KIND of book?
YA fiction or text book

10. How old were you when you got your first library card?
 7, my mum is a big reader and she always took my to the library and made sure I had a card.

11. What’s the oldest book you have in your collection? (Oldest physical copy? Longest in the collection? Oldest copyright?)
Psycial copy-honestly no idea.  Not very old at all.
Longest in my collection- my Princess Diaries books my Meg Cabot.  They were the books that really got me into reading.
Longest copyright is probably Hamlet but don't know.

12. Do you read in bed?
Yes I do, comfy & relaxing.

13. Do you write in your books?
No, no, no, no, no. Sacrilidge! If I want notes on it, I'll use a post-it or on the Kindle just insert notes.

14. If you had one piece of advice to a new reader, what would it be?
Don't feel pressured to read what everyone else is reading.  Browse and see what piques YOUR interest.

15. What question have I NOT asked at BTT that you’d love me to ask?
(Actually, leave the answer to this one in the comments on this post, huh? So I can find them when I need inspiration!)
Do you have any unusual book/reading habits or obsessions?

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Sweet Stuff!

 The wonderful Bella Street nominated me for The Irrestibly Sweet Blog Award!

Rules: To list 7 random facts about myself and to nominate 10 other people...

1. My favourite TV show is Bones, truth be known I have a thing for David Boreanaz but the show IS awesome so it's doubly good.

2. I have some OCD tendencies...the usual locks, taps, fridge door-making sure they're all closed or off, plus negative numbers...I hate them and try in most things to have even numbers.

3.  Having curly hair I wake up with some serious bed head, I actually scare my dog.

4. I'm scared of birds.  One attacked me on holiday once and I nearly lost my eye so yeah...scared.

5. I'm a C.O.D. zombie addict.  Me and my best friend turn into teenage boys on that game.  Good times.

6. I studied forensic science for 2 years...I didn't look good in a white suit.

7.  I carried out an experiement with my friend into bone mad scientist time- we froze, set fire to and boiled bones and then went to town with a hammer.  I think we scared people.  Our teacher was somewhat surprised.  Blame my Bones addiction.

My list of blogs to nominate:

Monday, 9 January 2012

Touch of Power by Maria V. Snyder

UK Cover
Received for review

  • Paperback: 400 pages

  • Publisher: MIRA (20 Dec 2011)
  • Language English
  • ISBN-10: 1848450656
  • ISBN-13: 978-1848450653
  • What s the cost of a deal with the devil when you have the powers of a god? When Avry was growing up, Kazan was a prosperous land, rich in resources and served by a respected tribe of healers. Until the plague came. Developed by the poor territories to the north and west, the terrifying disease ravaged the people of Kazan and drove Avry s family away. Four years later, imprisoned for using her powers, Avry s beginning to lose hope, when a band of strange men break into her cell and steal her away. They need her special magic to save their prince. The Prince who ordered the plague s first release. Avry s freedom now rests on using her healing touch to save the very man who took away everything she loved...
US Cover
Cover: Both the UK and US covers of this book are stunning.  The US is 'prettier' with the pinks and purples but I prefer the UK cover, I feel that the darker, icy colours suit the dystopian plague ridden world of the fifteen realms AND shows Avry's inner strength whereas the US cover (to me) shows her as more of a fragile and delicate character, which she is not.

Plot: Avry is a healer.  A person gifted with the ability to heal the sick and injured.  Once they were revered and respected.  Now they're reviled.  They're blamed for the plague that ravaged the population.  Healers are now hunted and executed and it looks like Avry is the last one and is valuable to someone...and they're looking for her.

I have not read any of Marie V. Snyder's other books but I can say that based on this I want to, and soon!
As soon as I picked this up I was completely absorbed by the dystopian world with aspects of fantasy with a medieval feel to it-the world building was fantastic.
Avry is a wonderful protagonist- her healer nature makes her compassionate (despite people's feelings towards healers she can't see a child suffer) but she has a strong backbone (she learns to throw knives- which I loved).
This book was plot rich, full of action and intrigue.  
This book isn't heavy on the romance.  For most of the book they hate each other, the romance develops late but for me it works.
All the characters felt very different, all very 3D- no cookie cutout characters here.
I did tear up at one point (but will not spoil it).
Needless to say this book is a 5/5 star book for me.  Every single element worked and I fell in love with this world and will definitely check out the next Avry of Kazan novel when it's released in 2013 and I will be recommending this to everyone!

Thursday, 5 January 2012

Booking Through Thursday

Booking Through Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by Booking Through Thursday and a different question is posted every week.

If you could sit down and interview anyone, who would it be?
And, what would you ask them?

This was such a hard question.
From the past I'd love to be able to interview Jane Austen, because I would like to see if the wit within the pages of her novels would come out in 
conversation and to find out her reaction to her popularity today.
Presently, I would like to interview Meg Cabot because I have been reading her books for a long time, and her books really helped captivate me with reading.

Wednesday, 4 January 2012

2011 Book Survey

Survey started by Jamie at the Perpetual Page Turner.
1. Best Book You Read In 2011?
Nevermore by Kelly Creagh

2. Most Disappointing Book/Book You Wish You Loved More Than You Did?

Wake Unto Me by Lisa Cach

3. Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2011?

Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles.  I don't read a lot of contemporary but despite the cliches I loved this cute book.

4. Book you recommended to people most in 2011?

Divergent by Veronica Roth

5. Best series you discovered in 2011?

River of Time Series by Lisa T. Bergren

6. Favorite new authors you discovered in 2011?

Kody Keplinger, Stephanie Perkins, Kendare Blake, Kelly Creagh.

7. Best book that was out of your comfort zone or was a new genre for you?

Divergent by Veronica Roth-my first dystopian read ever and I loved it.
Anna Dressed In Blood by Kendare Blake- my firs t YA horror read and I loved it so much.

8. Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2011?

Such a hard question but the books I couldn't put down this year are Nevermore by Kelly Creagh and Anna Dressed In Blood by Kendare Blake.

9. Book you most anticipated in 2011?

Deeper Than Midnight by Lara Adrian
Kiss of Snow by Nalini Singh

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2011?

Hourglass by Myra McIntire

11. Most memorable character in 2011? 

Tris and Four from Divergent by Veronica Roth, both really, interesting characters.

12. Most beautifully written book read in 2011?

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins.

13. Book that had the greatest impact on you in 2011?

Divergent by Veronica Roth.  It really got me into the genre.

14. Book you can't believe you waited UNTIL 2011 to finally read?

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.

15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2011?

The Duff by Kody Keplinger "I hated the smooth, confident way he spoke  A lot of girls thought it was sexy, but it was really just stalker-ish.  Everything about him just screamed date rape! to me. Ugh."
When I read this I roared with laughter.

16. Book That You Read In 2011 That Would Be Most Likely To Reread In 2012?

Geek Girl by Cindy C. Bennett.

17. Book That Had A Scene In It That Had You Reeling And Dying To Talk To Somebody About It? (a WTF moment, an epic revelation, a steamy kiss, etc. etc.) Be careful of spoilers!

Torment (River of Time #3) by Lisa T. Bergren
A small love triangle emerged and I felt like it went against everything that happened in the first two books, and I couldn't wait to talk to my friend Jess about it because I just knew she's feel the same way and it was discussed...thoroughly.

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is all about sharing the books that I'm eagerly waiting to be released.

This week I'm waiting on Tempest by Julie Cross released January 5th.  I've heard mixed things about it but really want to check it out.