ARC Review- Eve: The Awakening by Jenna Moreci

eve

Release Date: August 12th 2015

From Goodreads

      Eve is an outcast. A chimera.
      After years of abuse and rejection, 19-year-old Evelyn Kingston is ready for a fresh start in a new city, where no one knows her name. The esteemed Billington University in Southern California seems like the perfect place to reinvent herself—to live the life of an ordinary human.
       But things at Billington aren’t as they seem. In a school filled with prodigies, socialites, and the leaders of tomorrow, Eve finds that the complex social hierarchy makes passing as a human much harder than she had anticipated. Even worse, Billington is harboring a secret of its own: Interlopers have infiltrated the university, and their sinister plans are targeted at chimeras—like Eve.
      Instantly, Eve’s new life takes a drastic turn. In a time filled with chaos, is the world focusing on the wrong enemy? And when the situation at Billington shifts from hostile to dangerous, will Eve remain in the shadows, or rise up and fight?

I have just finished EVE and I feel like I have been on an emotional roller-coaster involving waterfalls of tears and huge vertical drops of pain, interspersed with crazy loops of happiness. I am not really sure where I stand right now apart from to say I LOVED THIS BOOK. This review might get updated a few times as I continue to think about the plot and characters, meaning it might end up quite long so I have split it into two parts.

The Short
Five Stars- it was amazing, mind-blowing, let me live in this story world for ever and ever and never leave!

The Long

Here we go. I am going for a no-spoiler review here, so bear with my rambling! I ought to say here that I received a free ARC from the Author and this has in no way affected my review.

Things I loved about EVE: The Awakening

Eve. It is so rare these days for a reader to be given a strong female character who can still depend on others, make mistakes and actually be believable. Eve is a tough girl, but she has reason to be. She has been abused at every stage of her life, shunned by society and beaten up by her peers. So she learnt to fight back, she learnt to control her talent and she learnt to keep people away. She is a leader, but is not perfect.

Jason Valentine– Finally, a love interest who doesn’t treat the main character like dirt. He is kind, sweet and sexy. You won’t find any Christian Greys in Jenna’s story worlds, this guy is sweet, you could probably introduce him to your parents, (as long as they weren’t chimera hating asshats), he is sexy, and he cares for Eve and really shows it.

Percy– I adored Percy. I was so glad Jason has a friend who was loyal, and then when you meet Percy’s Mother…well, I feel I might be getting into spoiler territory here, but let me say- yay for loveable characters! If an author can make me squirm with happiness for the main character, then that author has won. Also Percy really made me feel that Jason was an alright guy early on in the book as he was so obviously nice, no way could Jason be an asshat and be friends with him.

The plot– all the way through this book, I really couldn’t see what was coming. And things kept coming! It is so action packed, and you honestly couldn’t guess what the gang were going to do next, but at the same time, because I feel like I know Jenna’s writing style from her youtube videos, I felt this inexplicable trust. You see, Jenna Moreci is a planner, she has the whole plot set out, so I knew (or at least, really really hoped) that the ending was going to be just as awesome as the rest of the book, so I could just settle in and enjoy the ride. This might be a personal thing, but lately I have been bitten by a lot of books that had good beginnings, great middles and then just went flop at the end. EVE is not one of these books, in fact, the ending might be the BEST part!

The fight scenes. Surprisingly, as I don’t really like action films and although I enjoy fight scenes in comic books, in novels I tend to just gloss over them a bit. But in EVE, I got really caught up in them, and now I want to be as bad ass as Eve!

Things I didn’t like

Ummmm, let me get back to you on that one! No, seriously, I can’t actually think of anything I would change about this book. It has given me weird dreams all week where I am fighting interlopers, that were actually the sort of scary nightmare that you are a little disappointed to wake up from? Anyone else get those? Nope, just me? Oh well!

Star Rating

Fivestars

 

 

So as I said, this book gets five stars from me, and I am definitely buying a hard copy as well as my already pre-ordered kindle edition.

If you would like to buy Eve: The Awakening, here is the link to Amazon, where you can preorder it.

The release date is the 12th August 2015.

I guess all that is left for me to say is thank you so, so, so much to Jenna for letting me read an Advance Reader Copy of this book, I am so honoured to be a part of your Cyborg Army.

I forgot to mention that you can read the first three chapters of EVE here. Be warned, it is totally addictive, possible side effects include swooning, shouting at the computer screen and clicking on the preorder button!

Much Booky Love
E. St. C
xxx

ARC Review: The Fangirls Guide to the Galaxy by Sam Maggs

fangirls guide to galaxy

 

Expected publication date: 12th May

Author: Sam Maggs

Publisher: Quirk Books

Disclaimer: I received a free ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This has in no way affected my review.

From Goodreads

Fanfic, cosplay, cons, books, memes, podcasts, vlogs, OTPs and RPGs and MMOs and more—it’s never been a better time to be a girl geek. The Fangirl’s Guide to the Galaxy is the ultimate handbook for ladies living the nerdy life, a fun and feminist take on the often male-dominated world of geekdom. With delightful illustrations and an unabashed love for all the in(ternet)s and outs of geek culture, this book is packed with tips, playthroughs, and cheat codes for everything from starting an online fan community to planning a convention visit to supporting fellow female geeks in the wild.

My review

Bah, this book, it has me feeling so conflicted! It kind of felt like one of those lists “10 signs you are a girl geek” designed to make you feel oh-so-special and unique and just amazing in every way. You know the ones? So, because I am a human being, I really enjoyed reading it. I felt all the way through, “hell yeah, that is me! I am a total Potterhead/Whovian/Browncoat/Insert Other fandom Here”. That isn’t to say there weren’t really good parts to this book. So, as we are all *such fans* of these lists, here ya go! I made you a special one!

(I actually really like lists! Lists of the best books of the year, lists of why I like/dislike a book, lists of books with awesome covers featuring girls in dresses, I just hate the ego filling lists that you get all over Facebook. For an amazing blog post on this, have a look at this post by Jenna Moreci, a truly amazing writer who has first hand experience of these lists!)

Things I Liked About This Book

1. I liked the Geek Girl Feminism chapter. All of it. Especially when she says that as women, we should be supporting one another, not putting each other down to claw our way to the top of the geekery pile. Go sister!

2. I liked the interviews with the creators/writers/other geekgirl stars. Very interesting and honest.

3. I liked the packing list for conventions. I am yet to go to a convention, I am saving up to go to one next summer, but I found this useful!

4. I liked the list of comic books/ books/ TV series etc. featuring bad-ass women or written by bad-ass women, as some of them I hadn’t heard of and intend to buy.

5. The language was easy to read and approachable. I laughed out loud several times.

6. I loved the encyclopedia of useful fangirl links and places to go at the end of the book. I joined the International Geek Girl Pen Pal Club (IGGPPC) because of this list, which is one of the most amazing places for geek girls to hang out on the Internet. Also, Pen Pals! So much fun to write an actual letter!

Things I Didn’t Like About This Book.

1. The description of the fandoms. I know I am a Potterhead, you know how? Because I fangirl about Harry Potter! This section felt like a mix of one of those ego-filling lists I talked about earlier and a “How to become a geek girl because they are so cool now” book. The reason I like fangirling over things, is because I really enjoyed the TV programme/Book series/Comic Book to begin with. I didn’t start watching Doctor Who just so I could become a Whovian. The only good part of this list was the starting points for some of the comic books and TV series, as there are several series I quite fancy reading/watching and wasn’t sure where to start. But at the same time…Google. So maybe this isn’t a good enough reason.

2. The way this book was so blinking focused on the US. Hey, we have cool things going on in Europe too! And I am sure other continents were screaming the same thing. Where is our list of amazing conventions?

3. The assumption that most of towns would have a geeky meeting place such as a comic book store etc. Maybe I just live in a really backward-geek place, but I think I would have to drive and hour and a half to find my local comic book store.

Things I was neutral about.

1. Descriptions of Facebook/Twitter and how to use them. Come on, we are in 2015! Who doesn’t know what they are?

2. I felt this book could have just been a bit MORE! More detail, more fandoms, more universal. But, at the same time. I enjoyed it, so…

I am going to give this book three stars, because it was pretty funny and an enjoyable read. Also it had six things I like and only three things I didn’t like.

Threestars

I recommend it for people who want to get into more series, who want to find some great links for fangirls on the internet and younger people or people who are new to fandoms. It is good for a light read, most of it not to be taken too seriously. Apart from the feminist bit. That should definitely be taken seriously!

Have you read this book? What did you think?

Link me up below if you have!

Booky love
E. St. C
xxx

Review: The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

Fault in our stars

From Goodreads

Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel’s story is about to be completely rewritten.

My Review

I do not want to watch the film. I think it would spoil the utter perfection that is this book. It is 1.23 am, my eyes are swollen, my skin is blotchy and I am in love with Augustus Waters, Hazel Grace and John Green.

This is the reason I am glad I don’t give five stars to all of my books, I keep them for the really special ones!

Go, read this book. Don’t do what I did and let it sit on your shelf unread because you didn’t trust the hype. The hype is totally undeserved- this book isn’t about two kids with cancer who fall in love. This is a book about two teens who fall in love, find the lack of meaning in their lives, get pretty angry at the universe, get pretty philosophical towards the universe and then break your heart. See? Much, much worse! And far better!

Fivestars

Update: One day later and I still can’t stop thinking about Hazel and Augustus. I have a major book hangover, I can’t read anything else!

ARC Review: Cold Burn of Magic

Cold Burn Magic

Review format: ARC on my Kindle

Expected publication: April 28th 2015 by K-Teen

Disclaimer: I received a free ARC from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This has in no way affected my review.

From Goodreads

There Be Monsters Here. . .

It’s not as great as you’d think, living in a tourist town that’s known as “the most magical place in America.” Same boring high school, just twice as many monsters under the bridges and rival Families killing each other for power.

I try to keep out of it. I’ve got my mom’s bloodiron sword and my slightly illegal home in the basement of the municipal library. And a couple of Talents I try to keep quiet, including very light fingers and a way with a lock pick.

But then some nasty characters bring their Family feud into my friend’s pawn shop, and I have to make a call–get involved, or watch a cute guy die because I didn’t. I guess I made the wrong choice, because now I’m stuck putting everything on the line for Devon Sinclair. My mom was murdered because of the Families, and it looks like I’m going to end up just like her. .

My Review

Well, let me start by saying that I made the big mistake of starting this book at 9pm and promptly lost all respect for the following morning. When I finished it at three in the morning, I lay there for another hour saying to myself “Oh my goodness. OH MY GOODNESS!”. Why? Because this book is awesome, that’s why! Jennifer Estep has done it again, in so many ways!  Here is a list!

  1. The Main Character. Jennifer Estep always manages to create really kick ass, strong, independent female characters, one of the many reasons I love her. However, in Lila Merriweather, Jennifer has surpassed herself. I loved Lila so much, I made a list within this list with all the reasons.
    • She is bad-ass. Seriously, even when she isn’t brandishing her sword, she has this belt that hides three throwing stars which she uses like a pro. 
    • She lives in a library. Can I say jealous? All the books she has at her fingertips? Admittedly it is in the abandoned basement, but it is still in the library!
    • She has pretty much been taking care of herself since her mother died when Lila was thirteen. I call that independent and capable!
    • She gets hired as a bodyguard for a boy! Go Jennifer, switching stereotypes! 
    • She totally owns a sexist pig at one point during the book. I can’t reveal due to spoilers, but honestly, I loved her even more after that. We all need to stand up for our sisters more! 
  2. The love interest Devon. He is capable, strong and handsome but he doesn’t try to always protect Lila. he understands how awesome she is and was totally ok with asking her for help! Plus he is genuinely a nice guy! Finally, a YA love interest who doesn’t act like a total meanie for the first half of the book before being “magically transformed into a nice person” by the heroine. Also, there is no insta-love here! Jennifer makes these characters work for their feelings, which I love because when they finally start to fall for each other I get all the butterflies.
  3. The plot. I already told you I stayed up to read this book, and the plot was a huge part of this. I have to admit that I knew pretty early on that I didn’t like one particular person that turned out to be bad, but I had no idea I was meant to not like him! It was pretty subtle- I thought it was just me being difficult! The plot was exciting and fast-paced but it still showed you the normal bits of the world Lila lives in (which is totally not normal!).
  4. The monsters. I love how the monsters in this are actually scary and bad.
  5. The other characters. I already absolutely love Felix, I want him as my friend! And Jennifer Estep hasn’t held back with her baddies either. The evil people are really evil!  Yay! I mean, you still get that they are human and everything, but the things they do are really bad. Mean people are Mean! 
  6. The town. I am going to admit, when I first started the book, I wasn’t really sure abut the whole tourist and magic town thing, but as the book went on and I understood the world more, I really liked this aspect.
  7. The way Lila admits when she is wrong. There is no forced arguing or tension here because one character is just being annoyingly obstinate. You know the way I mean, when you are sitting there screaming, “Just explain you stupid girl!”. Well, Lila is like you or me, she actually talks to people! Refreshing!
  8. Oscar the pixie. Is it weird that Oscar kinda reminded my of Vic from the Mythos Academy series? I don’t know why!  Oscar was really good to have around to provide a respite from all the sword slashing and family drama. Also he made Lila’s bed for her, which I could totally get used to!
  9. Lila’s obsession with bacon. And food in general. Although this did make me want to cook bacon at 1am. But I love how Jennifer actually makes her characters do things we all have to do, like eat, shower and exercise. I always wonder if you can’t see this happening how on earth characters survive when a book follows them through non-stop action for a week. Plus I guess I just like to see the normal side of characters, especially when they live in fantastical worlds.
  10. The fact that this is a series. Which means that there will be a second book. Which I KNOW will definitely find a place on my eclectic bookshelf!

So in conclusion? I am going to give this book

fourstars

FOUR STARS- really liked it, this is definitely going to find a place on my eclectic shelves, go and buy this book!

I would recommend this book to fans of Young Adult who like strong lead females and lots of action.

Add this book to your TBR on Goodreads.

Find this book on Amazon (UK) or Amazon.com (US) to preorder.

If you liked this review, want to read this book or just generally want to gush about how much you love Jennifer Estep’s books, leave a comment below!

Much Booky Love
E. St. C.
xxx

Retro Review: Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson

since you've been gon

Format: Paperback
Published May 6th 2014 by Simon & Schuster
Originally Read: 26th November

From Goodreads
The Pre-Sloane Emily didn’t go to parties, she barely talked to guys, she didn’t do anything crazy. Enter Sloane, social tornado and the best kind of best friend—the one who yanks you out of your shell.

But right before what should have been an epic summer, Sloane just… disappears. No note. No calls. No texts. No Sloane. There’s just a random to-do list. On it, thirteen Sloane-selected-definitely-bizarre-tasks that Emily would never try… unless they could lead back to her best friend.

Apple Picking at Night? Okay, easy enough.

Dance until Dawn? Sure. Why not?

Kiss a Stranger? Wait… what?

Getting through Sloane’s list would mean a lot of firsts. But Emily has this whole unexpected summer ahead of her, and the help of Frank Porter (totally unexpected) to check things off. Who knows what she’ll find?

Go Skinny Dipping? Um…

My review
Morgan Matson is a seriously underrated author! I absolutely loved her other books, Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour and Second Chance Summer. I pounced on this book as soon as it arrived on my eclectic bookshelf and read it in one night. When I finished it in the early hours of the morning, it actually inspired me to write a to-do list for my sister and her husband..at 4am! Needless to say, the day after totally didn’t happen, but I really enjoyed the book! I would love it if one of my friends left me a list like Sloane did for Emily(hint hint friends). And it is really realistic too, they were all things that Emily actually had to make an effort to do, and the list definitely caused her to have adventures! Ugh!…if only I lived in this book world!

First, this was the song that was going through my head, as I originally read this book just after watching Pitch Perfect (amazing film!) and when I picked it up to review today, I started singing this song in the style of Rebel Wilson, much to my poor dog, Ollie’s, horror! (Thank you Kelly Clarkson!)

2015-01-24 22.21.05
Ollie (my dog):”Please stop singing Eleanor!”

Next, the main character, Emily. As MC’s go, she is not one I would normally connect to, as she is quite shy and not very confident, and I am not really shy and probably need to have my confidence hit down a little! However, Morgan really makes her relatable, I could completely see why she was so happy to live in Sloane’s shadow. And her development throughout the book is very realistic, especially her views of Sloane. It sort of reminded me of that change kids go through when they become adults and they realise their parents aren’t perfect, apart from she did it with her friend whom she had idolised. And then she continued to love Sloane anyway. 🙂

The only thing that slightly disappointed me is the ending of the book, I felt not much had changed…I mean Emily had totally changed but..well, I fear I cannot say more for fear of SPOILERS but I think that in this book, the journey is definitely better than the destination!

Finally, I thought I would write a list for you, avid reader, to complete! Comment below if you manage to do all (or some) of the things in the list below!

1) Read Since You’ve Been Gone

2) Take part in a blog meme. (A great list of weekly memes can be found here). If you don’t have a blog, take part on Twitter or Facebook. If you regularly take part in memes, try a new one.

3) Read a book you found through a blog.

4) Write a review for a book.

5) Complete one random act of kindness today!

Also, if you have ever completed any of the things on Emily’s List in the book, let me know in the comments! Personally, the items I have completed are 1) “Kiss a stranger”(at a sixth form party), 2) “Go skinny dipping”(erm, long story?), 6) “Ride a dern horse, ya cowpoke”(I am very lucky in that I own my own horse), 9) “Dance until dawn” (Summer Ball at University- I danced until 7am!) and 13) “Sleep under the stars” (I made myself a hammock in the garden- turns out Wales is freezing at night even in the summer!)

Overall, this was a very enjoyable read and therefore,
I am going to give this book
fourstars
FOUR STARS
I really enjoyed it, go buy it, read it, love it!

Add to your TBR on Goodreads

Review: Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

Scarlet

Format: Paperback
Published February 5th 2013 by Feiwel & Friends

From Goodreads
Cinder, the cyborg mechanic, returns in the second thrilling installment of the bestselling Lunar Chronicles. She’s trying to break out of prison–even though if she succeeds, she’ll be the Commonwealth’s most wanted fugitive. Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit’s grandmother is missing. It turns out there are many things Scarlet doesn’t know about her grandmother or the grave danger she has lived in her whole life. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother’s whereabouts, she is loath to trust this stranger, but is inexplicably drawn to him, and he to her. As Scarlet and Wolf unravel one mystery, they encounter another when they meet Cinder. Now, all of them must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana, who will do anything for the handsome Prince Kai to become her husband, her king, her prisoner.

My review
Oh please!! Scarlet, who wears a red hoody, and meets a street fighter called Wolf who offers to help her find her kidnapped Grandmother?! This book was never going to be anything other than amazing! Marissa Meyers writing ensured it was, in fact, AH-MAZING!

This is the second book in a series. You know when you read a second book and it is a huge disappointment, nowhere near as good as the first? Yeh, this wasn’t like that. This was BETTER! This was the book that made the Lunar Chronicles a series that is going to be sitting in prime position on my eclectic bookshelf for a very long time!

The book follows the two main protagonists, Cinder from the first book, and Scarlet who is introduced in this book. At first, I couldn’t really see how their stories were going to connect, but when they did, I was grinning, it was perfect!

Cinder actually gets even more likeable in this book, she breaks out of jail with a fellow inmate, Thorne. Or Captain Thorne as he would like to be called! There isn’t much of the romance between Cinder and Kai, seeing as Cinder has totally lied to and betrayed him, but you can still feel how much he wishes she hadn’t, even as he orders for her to be found and handed over to Queen Levana.

For example, at a press interview:

“Did you know that she was cyborg?” asked a woman in an unhidden tone of disgust.
Kai stared at her, appearing confused, then let his gaze dance over the crowd. He shuffled his feet
closer to the podium, a wrinkle forming on the bridge of his nose.
Cinder bit the inside of her cheek and braced herself for adamant disgust. Who would ever invite a
cyborg to the ball?
But instead, Kai said simply, “I don’t see that her being cyborg is relevant. Next question?”
Cinder’s metal fingers jolted.”

At one point, I wondered if Cinder and Thorne were going to get together, but that sort of wore off when her story connected with Scarlet’s. For which I am grateful! They are, after all, a retelling of the fairy tales! One true love and all that! Here is one of the great quotes between the pair!

“A relieved grin filled up Thorne’s face. “We’re having another moment, aren’t we?”

“If by a moment, you mean me not wanting to strangle you for the first time since we met, then I guess we are.”

I also have to add in a bit about Iko in this review. Iko was Cinder’s Android, but her Aunt had her disassembled. However, Cinder saved Iko’s personality chip and she becomes a SPACESHIP! Which makes for some really funny statements on poor Iko’s behalf. Iko would really like an escort android body so she can be pretty, being a ship is not what she wants!

“Cinder,” Iko said after a few silent minutes of explorations. “I’m enormous.

And then there is Scarlet. Oh, Scarlet, where do I begin! Scarlet lives in future France on a farm with her grandmother. I can’t really say a lot about Scarlet without spoiling the story, apart from perhaps, stubborn, willful and quick witted. Her connection with Wolf the street fighter was a little insta-love, but as the story progressed there were definitely some pretty high walls thrown between them, which made it believable.

“She sighed, annoyed at her restlessness. “So,” she said, disrupting Wolf in another backward glance.
“Who would win in a fight—you or a pack of wolves?”
He frowned at her, all seriousness. “Depends,” he said, slowly, like he was trying to figure out her motive for asking. “How big is the pack?”
“I don’t know, what’s normal? Six?”
“I could win against six,” he said. “Any more than that and it could be a close call.”
Scarlet smirked. “You’re not in danger of low self-esteem, at least.”

Overall, the book is one of my favourite reads of January, so…

I am going to give this book
Fivestars
FIVE STARS
It was amazing, mind-blowing, let me live in this story world for ever and ever and never leave!

Add to your TBR pile on Goodreads

Review: Cinder by Marissa Meyer

 

Cinder

Format: Paperback
Published January 3rd 2012 by Feiwel & Friends

From Goodreads
Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth’s fate hinges on one girl.

Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She’s a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister’s illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai’s, she suddenly finds herself at the center of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world’s future.

My review
Honestly, I was reaching the end of my love for Dystopian novels. It was beginning to feel like everyone was jumping on the bandwagon to try and get a bestseller, whether they had a good story to tell or not! Then I read this book! Cinder is a retelling of Cinderella (I know, I know, also overdone!) with a dystopian twist, and to my greatest surprise, it was…good? Yeh, I was pretty shocked! I read it one evening when I was skiing out in Switzerland. I had hurt my knee off piste, my friends were all at a club having a great time and I was on my own killing time in the chalet, feeling pretty sorry for myself (even though I probably had absolutely no right to be!). I picked Cinder out of a huge bag of books I had taken that had been sitting on my TBR pile and fell into another world!

First, the main character. Finally, a properly three dimension MC! Cinder is a cyborg in a society where cyborgs are looked down on. But don’t worry, she is totally amazing, not at all your typical downcast mc with a bad past, she doesn’t spend all that much time feeling sorry for herself, really loves her little step sister who falls ill with the plague and is an amazing mechanic. She has a plan for her future and can really look out for herself. She is definitely not perfect, and I really fell in love with her.

Her evil stepmother is really horrible, but…I can sort of understand her. She is trying so hard to fit society’s norms, and absolutely loves her daughters. Even though she does something mean to Cinder which I cannot say due to spoilers, I cannot 100% say that I do not know people who would do as she does.

Unlike Queen Levana! Wow, there is somebody it takes no effort to hate! She is manipulative, pretty (with her glamour on) and plain evil. And yet, I think there may be more to her…As I think we will see in Fairest!

The plot is great, never a dull moment, it really flows. I love that Marissa keeps in a variation of the glass slipper being left on the stair.

Keeping the best bit for last…Prince Kai! Sigh! He is being added to my list of favourite book boyfriends! He is out of his depth, but is trying to be strong and is definitely trying to do his best for his people, even if it is a slightly misguided attempt. I really got their romance, I totally believed in it.

So all in all, great book! I ordered Scarlet and Cress immediately, so I think this is definitely going to find a place on my eclectic bookshelf!

I am going to give this book
fourstars
FOUR STARS
I really enjoyed it, go buy it, read it, love it!

 

Review: The Elements of Eloquence by Mark Forsyth

The elements of eloquence

 

Author: Mark Forsyth

Format: Paperback

Add to your TBR pile on Goodreads

From Goodreads

In an age unhealthily obsessed with substance, this is a book on the importance of pure style.

From classic poetry to pop lyrics and from the King James Bible to advertising slogans, Mark Forsyth explains the secrets that make a phrase – such as ‘Tiger, tiger, burning bright’ or ‘To be or not to be’ – memorable.

In his inimitably entertaining and witty style he takes apart famous lines and shows how you too can write like Shakespeare or Oscar Wilde. Whether you’re aiming for literary immortality or just an unforgettable one-liner, The Elements of Eloquence proves that you don’t need to have anything to say – you simply need to say it well.

My review

I adored this book! I read it in one sitting in a coffee shop, where my bouts of laughter attracted some rather scathing glances. (How dare I enjoy a book so much that I laugh out loud!)
It does exactly what it says on the cover, instructs one on how to “Turn the Perfect English Phrase,” and so, so much more.
I want to tell everyone I know to read it, but, I sort of don’t at the same time because I want to keep all of the amazing knowledge stored within its rather beautiful cover to myself. Is that bad? Maybe. Do I care? No!
So, as a peace offering, I am going to post this review incredibly loudly on my blog and all of my friends and family that love me enough to traipse through other book reviews and awful original writing by yours truly will find this review and MY HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION. And if they don’t love me enough to suffer my tedious and obnoxious musings, they will miss out on this gem (and I can keep it to myself for a little while longer).
So, friends, family and anyone else who might be reading this review, for fun, laughter and an enlightening read on the figures of rhetoric, choose this book.

Fivestars

Review: V is for Virgin

The best thing about Christmas, other than seeing my lovely family, is all that extra reading time.
I am travelling from Wales to my boyfriends house in Suffolk today, which is an incredibly long journey so I packed as many books as I could fit in my already stuffed suitcase! This means lots more Boxing Day reviews! (Thank goodness for personal wifi hotspots!)

So, V is for Virgin…

IMG_0456

From Goodreads
When Val Jensen gets dumped for her decision to stay a virgin until marriage, the nasty breakup goes viral on YouTube, making her the latest internet sensation.

After days of ridicule from her peers, Val starts a school-wide campaign to rally support for her cause. She meant to make a statement, but she never dreamed the entire nation would get caught up in the controversy.

As if becoming nationally recognised as “Virgin Val” isn’t enough, Val’s already hectic life starts to spin wildly out of control when bad boy Kyle Hamilton, lead singer for the hit rock band Tralse, decides to take her abstinence as a personal challenge.

How can a girl stay true to herself when this year’s Sexiest Man Alive is doing everything in his power to win her over?

My review
Ok, when I read this description, I honestly thought it was going to be a preachy book about staying a virgin until marriage and how if you don’t you are doomed. However, having read other books by Kelly Oram that I really enjoyed, I thought I should give this book a go. I was so wrong about everything!

This book is ah-mazing. Val has a very personal reason for wanting to stay a virgin and she doesn’t preach that we shouldn’t all be having pre-marital sex at all. It is more about pro-choice and not being forced into something we don’t feel ready for. So for starters, this book was already doing better than I hoped for!

Val is a brilliant main character, she is really strong, knows what she wants but isn’t prone to the occasional melt down! I laughed out loud so many times when reading this book, which, as you can imagine, is not making me very popular on the national express…

Her best friend acted in a very believable way and Kyle is brilliant. He is not too perfect and it took me a little while to warm to him, which I loved, as whilst I am a fan of insta-love, it seems to be a theme in every book at the moment! Not from Kelly Oram! She makes her characters earn each other’s love and respect, which I think is brilliant.

The cute scenes in this book between Kyle and Val made me squirm with happiness, the best feeling ever!

I can’t wait to read the next book, A is for Abstinence!

I am going to give is book
fourstars
FOUR STARS
I really enjoyed it, go buy it, read it, love it!

 

Review: Of Metal and Wishes

Of Metal and Wishes

Author: Sarah Fine
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Published: August 5th 2014
First in a series. Next book to be released August, 2015.

Add to your TBR pile on Goodreads

Format: I read this book on Pulseit. Every week, Pulseit features full books or exclusive extended excerpts of the latest in YA.

Summary from Goodreads

There are whispers of a ghost in the slaughterhouse where sixteen-year-old Wen assists her father in his medical clinic—a ghost who grants wishes to those who need them most. When one of the Noor, men hired as cheap factory labor, humiliates Wen, she makes an impulsive wish of her own, and the Ghost grants it. Brutally.

Guilt-ridden, Wen befriends the Noor, including their outspoken leader, a young man named Melik. At the same time, she is lured by the mystery of the Ghost and learns he has been watching her … for a very long time.

As deadly accidents fuel tensions within the factory, Wen must confront her growing feelings for Melik, who is enraged at the sadistic factory bosses and the prejudice faced by his people at the hand of Wen’s, and her need to appease the Ghost, who is determined to protect her against any threat—real or imagined. She must decide whom she can trust, because as her heart is torn, the factory is exploding around her … and she might go down with it.

My review

I have to admit, the cover of this book really intrigued me and I think it fitted the book really well.

I am so glad I made the time to read this book this week because I really enjoyed it. Let me start with the characters. Wen is an incredibly intense character, and although she changes throughout the book she always stays true to herself, by the end of the book she is basing her attitude and beliefs on the actions of others rather than her preconceptions. At the same time, she is a really relatable character, not impossibly strong or brave. As for Melik, I think he is a really dynamic character, his flaws make him imperfect and relatable and he has this touch of innocence despite having seen a lot, or maybe I should call it idealism? As for the Ghost, he has a childlike demeanour, and even though he does horrible things you still can’t dislike him because he seems to be trying to help Wen the whole time, even though it is often in a misguided way.

As for the plot, it was great! Lots of twists and turns and the ending was crazy! Not exactly a cliffhanger as it closed the book off really nicely, but it definitely left it open for more!

Normally I would say here what I didn’t like about the book, but honestly I cannot think of anything. the writing was seamless, the protagonist was relatable and some very important issues were addressed, including rape, blame and discrimination. the love triangle that developed was believable and

I wish to add to this review a common misconception some readers have had about this book. Lots of readers were upset at the rape culture insinuated in this book. I totally get where they are coming from as Wen often feels that the sexual harassment is her fault and at one point totally forgives it, but I guess in my mind I read that as what the protagonist and her society believed and it was written from her point of view. Lots and lots of women believe rape is their own fault and wanting Wen to be stronger would make her, well, not real. I guess I read it knowing that these things were wrong, but that she felt she had no choice and had not been told otherwise by anyone. I do not think the author was writing this book believing that what she was writing was true in any way! Okay, rant over!

The next instalment of the series is called Of Dreams and Rust and is being released on August 4th 2015.  I for one cannot wait!

Star Rating

I loved this book so much it has made me want to read all the other books by Sarah Fine and for that reason I am going to give it

Fivestars

Five stars: it was amazing, mind-blowing, let me live in this story world for ever and ever and never leave!

Review: Spice God by C.L. Stone

Spice God Cover

Publisher: Arcato Publishing; 2 edition (23 July 2013)
Format: Kindle

I bought this book on my Kindle from Amazon.co.uk

Summary

From Amazon:

Newly divorced, Melody ran away from a drugged out ex-husband and a controlling mother with little more than the clothes on her back. She needed a new home and a new job, not to mention a new life. Juniper Island, a thriving and posh hideaway known for its bustling summer tourism, held a promise to be exactly the change she needed. Without a second thought, Melody buys a one-way bus ticket.

Directed to the North Shore by the bus driver, she meets Tonac, the unusual chef and owner of Mayana, a restaurant tailored to serve the hard-working island locals. He gives his delicious meals away for free, but that’s not the strangest part; he doesn’t serve people what they want, only what they need.

When Melody tastes the food for the first time, she finds out why the customers keep coming back, and it’s not just to eat for free or to be served by a rude waiter with no people skills. The food influences people in unique ways: sometimes it gives them visions, sometimes bravery, and in others it casts a new light into the darkest and faintest of memories — whether they wanted to remember or not.

Knowing she can do better as a server than the crabby waiter, Melody applies for a job at this strange restaurant. Tonac takes her on, but under his care, she comes face-to-face with the secrets of what he really is and who (and what) else inhabits the island.

But not all of the residents of Juniper Island are happy with Tonac and his special meals. And when Melody gets caught up in the middle, it’ll take more than a few spiced apple tarts or a bowl of pumpkin soup to uncover the deep and dark secrets that some inhabitants of Juniper Island want to keep buried.

My Review

Ok, I have to be honest, this book has been sitting on my TBR pile for about a month now. I really love The Academy series by C.L. Stone and did not want to move on. However, I am now really glad I did.

I loved this book! I thought Melody was a really interesting, deep character and the descriptions of Tonac and Dion were just, well, *swoon*. I have to admit, I had no idea the twist involving the guys was coming, it completely fooled me, and made this book go on my list of “unable to put down”.
I really enjoyed the descriptions in this book, I could picture the Mayana and Juniper Island in my mind perfectly.

I am most definitely on Team Dion, even though he was a bit of an ass in the beginning, he seemed to have a lot of charm and tried to help Melody understand more about the powers he had, which was more than Tonac did. He was also funny, and I am a sucker for a boy that can make me laugh!

The only downsides to this book was that outside of the three main characters I did not feel that I really knew any of the other characters very well. For example, Gretta ends up becoming Melody’s best friend and in the end she sacrifices a lot because she loves everyone on the island, so I just wish we could have got to know them all a bit better.

I felt that the book ended a bit abruptly and would have like to see a bit more explanation!

If you enjoyed The Ghost Bird series by C.L. Stone and you like stories about Gods and Goddesses then read this book!

Overall, I really enjoyed this book and would thoroughly recommend it. For that reason I am going to give it…..

Four out of five stars

fourstars