Month: April 2016

Random Fridays

My door had been left ajar, and even the faint glow of lantern light slipping through the gap at the threshold couldn’t his blue eyes any warmth.


Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder, page 106

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WWW Wednesdays

What am I currently reading?

Still reading The Boy Who Fell to Earth, The Summer I Turned Pretty and Poison Study, and I started Ruins yesterday.

What did I finish reading recently?

I finished Sugar Skulls at last, and the preview sample of Silence is Goldfish.

What am I reading next?

Here are all the options for the books I start reading next:

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Book Review: Silence is Goldfish

pro_readerI only received the first three chapters, but I’ll write my review based on what I read.

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Silence is Goldfish by Annabel Pitcher – eBook – Published October 1st 2015 by Orion Children’s Books

A massive thanks to Hachette Children’s Group for allowing me to read the beginning of this book, via NetGalley.

So Tessie is a teenage girl who has just found out a piece of shocking information; her father is not her real father, and he is disgusted by her. She found his blog post on a network of sperm and egg donors, where he admits how he feels about raising a child who is not his own.

The idea is good, and I like how we don’t find out exactly what Tessie is upset about straight away. As far as I know, she’s not letting on that she even knows that her father is not her real father, and I am rather interested as to how she confronts the issue.

I did get a bit sidetracked by the missing “fi” and “fl” letters in this, leaving me to figure out what is meant by “ngers” and “aps”, but I would assume that the full book wouldn’t have this issue.

My main problem – and only problem, really – is how some sentences are overly long, with little or no punctuation. I understand that the desired effect may have been Tessie’s wandering mind, but it just seemed a bit too all over the place.

I would be interested in reading the rest of this book, but whether I would actually pay for it… I did find the idea unique, and I didn’t really love or hate it. So three stars for Silence is Goldfish.

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Book Review: Sugar Skulls

pro_readerI’ve been reading this for over a month now, so sorry it’s taken me so long to post this review!

First of all, I’d like to give a huge thank you to Skyscape for allowing me to read this book for free, returning my honest opinion, through NetGalley.

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Sugar Skulls by Lisa Mantchev and Glenn Dallas – eBook, 333 pages – Published November 10th 2015 by Skyscape

The thing that really drew me into this book is the cover. I mean, it’s seriously gorgeous. This whole “Sugar Skull” thing is a bit of a trend (or has been) and honestly, I kind of like it. I mean, I’d never go out like that, but you must admit that this face paint looks stunning.

I won’t lie, it took me a while to get into this. I didn’t really understand quite what was going on. Eventually, it did begin to make sense, and I can tell you now that this is a book about a city – closed off by the Wall – where many drugs are legal, and energy is collected via thrum collectors. Vee, one of two protagonists/narrators, is the lead singer of the band Sugar Skulls, performing to create thrum (or whatever term they use). She gets mixed up with Micah, an off-the-grid guy who does drops for shady characters, trying to hunt down the dealer of some dodgy drug that killed his friends.

So although it was a bit all over the place at the start, it did all get explained in the end. The back story with Vee and Damon – her band’s manager – is shocking, but does make you realise why things are the way they are. As for Micah and the loss of his friends… Again, that really does explain a lot of his actions.

I really like the idea of Cyrene, with “over-the-Wall” drinks and music, and a load of kids allowed to party and drink and take whatever drugs they want to their hearts’ galore. Vee isn’t my favourite character ever, as she seems a bit too bitchy at times, but she’s strong and independent and emotional, too. Micah is caring, if a little rash sometimes. And Damon… Damon is, well, a douche.

While the premise of this novel is great, I just didn’t fall in love with it. I didn’t sit there for hours refusing to put it down. I didn’t hate it, but there just wasn’t anything particularly special in the way it was written. Yeah, the alternating views of Micah and Vee gave us a nice insight into their individual lives, and yes there was some lovely descriptive writing, but that’s about as good as it gets. So, being somewhat generous here, I’ll give Sugar Skulls 3 out of five stars.

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WWW Wednesdays

What am I currently reading?

Still working my way through Sugar Skulls, The Boy Who Fell to Earth and The Summer I Turned Pretty, and I started Poison Study about ten minutes ago.

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What did I finish reading recently?

I finished the third book in The Mortal Instruments series, City of Glass, earlier today. I know, I know, I really need to read more often again…

What am I reading next?

Here are all the options for the books I start reading next:

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Book Review: City of Glass

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City of Glass by Cassandra Clare (The Mortal Instruments #3) – Paperback, 508 pages – Published 2013 by Walker Books

This is the third of six books in The Mortal Instruments series.

At 500 pages, I was slightly worried about this. The other two books were rather long too, and I had no problem with those, but I still feared that I would tire of this partway through. That was luckily not the case – far from, in fact.

We’re still following Clary and her Shadowhunter friends, trying to take down Valentine before he puts his plan into action while simultaneously trying to revive Clary’s mother from her coma. There’s a situation between both Clary and Simon and Clary and Jace – the latter being really rather awkward – and also a little thing going on between Alec and Magnus.

In this book, Clary finds herself in Alicante, the capital city of Idris, without any given permission. She also finds Simon there, locked up in the Gard. I don’t want to give too much away, but let’s just say that the whole sibling situation with Valentine’s children is finally cleared up, in such an incredibly believable-yet-unbelievable way. Also, we’re reunited with Hodge and a few members of the Seelie Court. Oh, and Luke’s pack of werewolves, Raphael and the vampires, and we even meet a couple of angels. Nice.

This book contains a lot of past information, details about Valentine and what he did to his children. It brings a lot of clarity, and really makes you think, I understand now. Valentine is getting ever closer to executing his plan fully, and the Shadowhunters have to learn to work with the Downworlders rather than against them. Spies hidden among the Clave are brought to justice, and one very unexpected character is introduced, before being killed off again. I do have my doubts about his death though…

As for Valentine… Well, if you don’t already know, you may as well go and read the book.

Usually I find that I prefer the first books in a series, but so far this is actually my favourite. It isn’t quite an all-time favourite of mine, but I’d be more than happy to reread it. There’s a lot of the typical YA paranormal stuff going on in here, making it not all that unique. That being said, it is really well written and very exciting and action-packed. I am wondering what the next few books are actually going to be about, now that the whole situation with Valentine and the Mortal Instruments has been cleared up…

So yeah, this is a really good book that I would definitely recommend to lovers of YA novels, dystopian and paranormal books. I found myself struggling to put it down, wanting to just read on and on to the end despite the length. I think 4.5 stars is a decent rating for this.

(P.S. I totally didn’t constantly think of Supernatural throughout this, especially not at the references to the Mark of Cain.)

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WWW Wednesdays

What am I currently reading?

Sugar Skulls, The Boy Who Fell to Earth, The Summer I Turned Pretty and now City of Glass.

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What did I finish reading recently?

I finished And Another Thing… yesterday.

What am I reading next?

Here are all the different options for the books I read next, don’t forget to vote on each poll because I tend to read a few books at a time!

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Book Review: And Another Thing…

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And Another Thing… by Eoin Colfer (The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy #6) – Paperback, 368 pages – Published May 27th 2010 by Penguin

I adored the first couple of books in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series by Douglas Adams, and although this isn’t by the same author, I was still pretty excited to read it.

Colfer has managed to capture the voice of Adams incredibly well, including the same nonsensical tone and randomness that made the first books so popular. The main difference between the writers is the length of the book; this addition to the series is considerably longer than the originals.

All our favourite characters are back, including the mean green dude who’s insulting everyone in the universe. This guy, who we discover is named Bowerick Wowbagger, has a surprisingly important role in this novel.

Arthur, Random, Trillion, Ford and Zaphod are all causing havoc yet again, unintentionally as per usual. They find themselves on Nano, a new planet colonised by the last remaining Earthlings after the destruction of Earth. Thor becomes Zaphod’s client, the immortal Bowerick has his mind set on death, and Trillian finds herself strangely attracted to this suicidal being. So yeah, everything’s normal.

I did get a little lost and uninterested during certain parts about Nano, but some of the little bits of dialogue or subtle jokes are just fantastic. If you didn’t already know this was by a different author, you may not have even noticed.

I’m not sure the series needed to be six books long, as the best books are definitely the first couple. But none of the books in this series are bad, and are all worth reading in my opinion. Sometimes I wasn’t sure this book deserved more than 3 or 3.5 stars, but by the end I decided it should get 4.

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Random Fridays

If Left Brain could have intercepted this thought, he would have laughed bitterly and proclaimed bitterly and proclaimed that there was about as much chance of Zaphod Beeblebrox just sipping as there was of a mouse giving a straight answer to a simple question.

And Another Thing… by Eoin Colfer (The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy #6), page 163