Wednesday 28 December 2011

My Favourite Reads of 2011

Honestly, I have read so many great books in 2011 it has been impossible to create this list.  But I was determined to do it.  So here you go - my Top 10 favourite reads of 2011....

10: Where She Went by Gayle Forman
I loved If I Stay so I was equally excited and scared about this.  But I needn't have been.  It's the perfect companion - I absolutely loved it.

9: Across The Universe by Beth Revis
The first chapter of this blew me away.  And I loved the science fiction / romance.

8: Dear Zoe by Philip Beard
For some reason I haven't written a review for this yet - I think maybe because I don't know how to sum up how brilliant it is.  But it really is.

7: Hunting Lila by Sarah Alderson
This is right up my street!  And how much did I love Alex?

6: Ashes by Ilsa J Bick
Dystopian and horror!  Just Wow! Creepy, suspenseful - seriously awesome!

5: Shelter by Harlan Coben
I love Harlan Coben - so a YA novel?  Everything I was looking for!  I have the feeling this will be one awesome series!

4: Entangled by Cat Clarke
I was supposed to go out but started reading this and didn't move until I finished it.  Utterly absorbing - I still think about Grace and what I think happened next. 

3: Delirium by Lauren Oliver
I thought I loved Before I Fall but this took my love for Lauren Oliver to a whole new level! 

2: Rockaholic by CJ Skuse
This completely took me by surprise and I loved everything about it!  I still can't think of a curly wurly without laughing to myself...

1: Long Lankin by Lindsey Barraclough
This was just completely different - creepy and atmospheric and just brilliantly written.

What about you?  Which books were your favourite reads in 2011?

Thursday 22 December 2011

I want to read that...

The Secret Sisterhood of Heartbreakers by Lynn Weingarten

From Goodreads: When her boyfriend breaks up with her on the first day of sophomore year, Lucy has no idea how she’s going to make it through homeroom, let alone the rest of her life. Enter three stunning girls with a magical offer Lucy can’t refuse. All she has to do is get a guy to fall in love with her in the next seven days, and then…break his heart and collect one of his brokenhearted tears. As the girls teach Lucy how to hook a guy (with the help of a little magic), she quickly discovers how far she is willing to go—and who she is willing to cross—to get what she wants.

Fans of Lauren Myracle, Jodi Lynn Anderson, and Meg Cabot will love this tale of breakups, friendship, new crushes, and magic. Told with wit and charm, The Secret Sisterhood of Heartbreakers is sure to be one of this winter’s most irresistible reads!

I love the sound of this! Plus the cover is ace. It's published 27 December 2012.

Wednesday 21 December 2011

Book Trailer: Hallowed by Cynthia Hand

Here is the trailer for the second book in the Unearthly series by Cynthia Hand. It looks awesome - I can't wait to read it! I loved the first book - you can read my review for it here.

Hallowed is published 2 January 2012

Tuesday 20 December 2011

Unearthly by Cynthia Hand

From Goodreads:  In the beginning, there's a boy standing in the trees . . . .

Clara Gardner has recently learned that she's part angel. Having angel blood run through her veins not only makes her smarter, stronger, and faster than humans (a word, she realizes, that no longer applies to her), but it means she has a purpose, something she was put on this earth to do. Figuring out what that is, though, isn't easy.

Her visions of a raging forest fire and an alluring stranger lead her to a new school in a new town. When she meets Christian, who turns out to be the boy of her dreams (literally), everything seems to fall into place—and out of place at the same time. Because there's another guy, Tucker, who appeals to Clara's less angelic side.

As Clara tries to find her way in a world she no longer understands, she encounters unseen dangers and choices she never thought she'd have to make—between honesty and deceit, love and duty, good and evil. When the fire from her vision finally ignites, will Clara be ready to face her destiny?

Unearthly is a moving tale of love and fate, and the struggle between following the rules and following your heart.

I really don't understand why I didn't read this one sooner.  I bought it as soon as it was published but for some (stupid) reason it's been sat on my shelf all this time.  The coming release of Hallowed - the second in the series - reminded me I really should read it.  And I am so glad I did because it is seriously good!

I loved Clara.  She's just really likeable - not too nice but really nice all the same.  I really liked her family too - especially her brother Jeffrey.  And her mother was interesting - I'm very intrigued by all the secrets she seems to be keeping.  I also think there may be more to the story of why Clara's dad left than we think.

The mythology in this is great - it's different enough to stand out.  Clara already knows that she is part angel - but at the same time there is a lot she doesn't know.  We get to learn a lot of that with her at the same time which is nice.  But also this reads a lot like a contemporary rather than a paranormal - there is a great deal of focus on relationships (friends, family and romance) which balances it nicely.

Now... Tucker.  What can I say?  He is just soooooo gorgeous and I can honestly say that if Clara does not end up with him at the end of this series there may be major tantrums on my part.  He is just completely and utterly swoon worthy!  Plus I love how their relationship and friendship develops.

Christian has the potential to be interesting - especially in Hallowed - but here he just didn't really make much of an impression.  I think I was too blinded by the brilliance of Tucker to be honest - but I do hope that he plays a bigger role in the next book so we can get to know him better.  I want to love him too. 

I am seriously looking forward to Hallowed now - I want to know what Jeffrey was up to?  What are her mother's secrets and will we ever know?  Plus I really need to know if Midas is okay... and of course I just want more Tucker!

Friday 16 December 2011

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

From Goodreads: Anna is looking forward to her senior year in Atlanta, where she has a great job, a loyal best friend, and a crush on the verge of becoming more. Which is why she is less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris - until she meets Etienne St. Clair: perfect, Parisian (and English and American, which makes for a swoon-worthy accent), and utterly irresistible. The only problem is that he's taken, and Anna might be, too, if anything comes of her almost-relationship back home.

As winter melts into spring, will a year of romantic near - misses end with the French kiss Anna - and readers - have long awaited?

So I think I'm with the majority on this one - I loved it!  I read it in one sitting - pretty much growled at anyone who came near - and I completely and utterly fell in love with Anna and St Clair!

The story follows Anna and her year in Paris.  She doesn't want to go - but is forced to by her father.  She feels completely out of place - especially since she doesn't speak French - but she soon makes friends,  including the lovely (and gorgeous) Etienne St Clair.  The only problem?  He already has a girlfriend...

The chemistry between Anna and St Clair is seriously awesome!  And I loved that they are friends too.  They really talk to each other - and are there for each other.  I also liked that the whole girlfriend situation wasn't simple - they'd been together for a long time and I thought it was realistic that it wouldn't be easy to walk away from that.

I also liked the group of friends - Meredith, Josh and Rashmi .    Plus I loved the Paris setting - it was something completely different.  And I enjoyed the story lines involving St Clair's dad and Anna's friend Bridge - it added to their romance but it also gave us a story that is more than just a romance.

Cute, adorable and really romantic.  I loved it so much I had to buy Lola and the Boy Next Door to catch up with Anna and St Clair!  I can't wait to read more by this author!

Tuesday 13 December 2011

Fracture by Megan Miranda (Extract and Trailer)

I have been soooo excited to read Fracture by Megan Miranda - and I can tell you that it is all kinds of awesome.  I loved it!  I will have a review for you a bit nearer it's release date (5 January 2012) but in the meantime you can check out the trailer and the first chapter.  Enjoy:D

Fracture - first chapter

You can find out more about Megan Miranda at her Website and on Twitter.

Saturday 10 December 2011

In My Mailbox (121)

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi @ The Story Siren


Stolen Away by Alyxandra Harvey - thanks Bloomsbury:)
Hit Squad by Sophie Mckenzie - thanks Simon & Schuster:)

Last Saturday I went to Simon & Schuster Christmas Blogger's Party where we were shown the 2012 highlights - it was a fab day so massive thanks to S&S for inviting me.  Plus they gave us all this awesome sounding proof:

The Hunt by Andrew Fukuda


Sing Me To Sleep by Angela Morrison
Illuminated by Erica Orloff

And Carly from Writing From The Tub was having a sort out and gave me these fab books - thanks Carly!

The Taming of Lilah May by Vanessa Curtis
She's With The Band by Georgia Clark
The Not Quite Perfect Boyfriend by Lili Wilkinson
That's Life, Samara Brooks by Daniel Ehrenhaft
Are You Going To Kiss Me Now? by Slone Tanen

Hope you all had a great week:)

Friday 9 December 2011

Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally

From Goodreads: What girl doesn't want to be surrounded by gorgeous jocks day in and day out? Jordan Woods isn't just surrounded by hot guys, though - she leads them as the captain and quarterback on her high school football team. They all see her as one of the guys, and that's just fine. As long as she gets her athletic scholarship to a powerhouse university. But now there's a new guy in town who threatens her starring position on the team... and has her suddenly wishing to be seen as more than just a teammate.

I really liked Catching Jordan.  Okay so I don't have a clue about football at all but I (surprisingly) found that aspect really exciting.  And, of course, I loved the romance.

Jordan is such a great character.  I loved the idea of her being a female quarterback and fighting to do something she really loves.  It's also interesting to see how loyal the rest of the team are to her - how she has earned their respect by being talented - but at the same time seeing how people outside her home town react to the idea of her playing football at college.

As for the men in her life - honestly Henry is just so gorgeous!  Even when I wanted to shake some sense into him.  And I love that him and Jordan have been friends for so long - that they know each other so well.  It's really sweet.  I also loved Carter and JJ - both are great friends.  Unfortunately I didn't completely warm to Ty - I understand there are reasons for him behaving the way he does but it still made me uncomfortable - they are his issues to deal with and I think he really needs to deal with them.

I also loved the story line with her dad - how it evolves and they come to really understand each other.  It makes for a really interesting read - and makes this more than just a typical romance.

Funny, romantic - this is a great read!  I'm really excited to see what Miranda Kenneally comes up with next!

Thursday 8 December 2011

Embrace by Jessica Shirvington

For Review: Orchard
Published: 6 October 2011

From Amazon:  I felt myself slipping away, losing myself to the senses. 'Kiss me,' I whispered.

Violet Eden has only ever wanted to be with Lincoln. But when he reveals a secret so powerful it could tear them apart, her world spins out of control. Then she meets Phoenix. Intense and beautiful, Violet is helplessly drawn to him...

Caught up in a battle between light and dark - where angels seek vengeance and humans are warriors - Violet must decide how much she's willing to sacrifice. And who she can love...

Embrace was one of those books that totally blindsided me. I'd heard a few whispers that it was good so when the opportunity to review it came up I jumped at the chance. But obviously there's good and then there's good, and boy is it good!

I loved Violet and was completely sucked into her story. She's easy to like - a character who is both strong and flawed - it makes her believable and easy to relate too. I loved that we got to experience it alongside her.  I liked her best friend Steph, and I absolutely loved Lincoln and could definitely identify with what Violet sees in him. And that kiss? Wow! Phoenix on the other hand was someone I wasn't sure I liked but then found myself being completely seduced by. I'm still not sure we know all there is to know there - but I'm interested to find out.  And it all makes for a very interesting triangle.

The mythology created is where the novel excels - I loved it. Sure, it requires a lot of explanation which slows down the pace in parts but it's definitely worth it - the whole thing is fascinating. I was completely gripped the whole time - in fact I'm not sure my bottom lip will ever recover from all the lip biting I did while reading it!

Fast paced and completely thrilling. If you are a fan of paranormal stories you have to read this. I seriously can't wait for Entice when it's published next year.

Monday 5 December 2011

I want to read that...

This Is So Not Happening by Kieran Scott

From Goodreads:  After their long summer apart, Ally and Jake were hoping for a drama free senior year. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like things will work out that way...again. — It turns out that Chloe is pregnant and says that Jake is the father. Hammond is pissed at his best friend, but mostly can't believe that Ally would stay with Jake. But Ally is tired of being apart from Jake and is willing to make it work. But that is easier said than done when Jake starts blowing Ally off to go to doctor's appointments with Chloe and Ally joins the school play and meets a new cute guy.

But as graduation approaches, things get more complicated as new secrets come out and Ally realizes maybe Jake isn't the guy she thought he was. After everything they've been through can Ally and Jake get out of Orchard Hill with their relationship intact?

I can't wait for this.  I loved books 1 and 2 in the series (I really need to post my reviews!) and I'm excited to see how this will all pan out for Ally and Jake!

It's published May (US) and August (UK)

Saturday 3 December 2011

In My Mailbox (120)

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi @ The Story Siren


Seizure by Kathy Reichs
Everneath by Brodi Ashton
A Beautiful Evil by Kelly Keaton
In Darkness by Nick Lake
After The Snow by S D Crocket
Vixen by Jillian Larken

Massive thanks to all the publishers who sent books for review:)


She's So Money by Cherry Cheva
Isle of Night by Veronica Wolff
By The Time You Read This, I'll Be Dead by Julie Anne Peters
The Secret Year by Jennifer R Hubbard
The Water Wars by Cameron Stracher

Hope you all had a great week:)

Thursday 1 December 2011

Cover to Covet (21)

I LOVE book covers. Love, love love them. So I decided to make it a regular post - each post featuring a cover I love.

Smashed by Lisa Luedeke

I love the smashed glass effect on it - really eye catching - and makes me want to find out what happened.

From Goodreads:  Maine high school senior Katie Martin is set to win a field hockey scholarship until her life is derailed by drinking, a car accident, and an angry classmate.

What do you think?

Wednesday 30 November 2011

And For Your Information by Denise Deegan

For Review: Hachette Books Ireland
Published: 8 September 2011

From Goodreads: Everyone thinks they know who I am - ditzy Sarah, who cares more about appearances than she does about anything real. And yeah, I do care about what people think of me. Take my friends Alex and Rachel. We all go to Strandbrook College, Dublin. We're supposed to be best friends. But Alex and Rachel - they're really close. They tell each other things that they would never tell me. I try not to mind. And then there's Simon. He's my sort-of boyfriend but we hardly see each other. And when we do, I feel like he doesn't really 'see' me, you know? Everything's such a mess right now. My dad left us to be with Her; my mum is really angry all the time; and my brother Louis, he just doesn't care. I guess that's why the shoplifting started. It makes me feel good. In control. I just want everything to change. And it does. The day I got caught ...

This is just one of those books that really got under my skin. I just can't stop thinking about it.

This is the second book in the Butterfly series - following on from And By The Way - and this time we get Sarah's story. I was surprised by how much I loved Sarah - she was the weaker of the three characters for me in the first book but here she really grows - becomes absolutely adorable and I could help but completely loved her.

I must say the synopsis is just a tad misleading - I went into this not realising just how much of an emotional roller coaster it would be. I'm not sure I've sobbed my way through a book quite like this for a while.

When Sarah is caught shoplifting she is forced to see a therapist and complete community service at a home. It is here she meets Shane - someone who opens her eyes to the kind of person she want to be.  I ADORED Shane. Honestly, I fell completely in love with him and I think anyone who reads this will too. He's just so selfless and caring - always thinking about other people - I'm not sure many people in his situation would be the same. I think Sarah's has a lot to do with this - I think meeting her helps him to overcome his anger to a certain extent but I also think it just gets him back to the person he was before.  And I admired Sarah for her decision - how brave she is to invest in the relationship and give that much for someone - I think that Shane gives her the courage to be who she wants to be and that gives her the courage to change the relationships around her. Plus they are just so incredibly sweet and caring with each other.

One of the things I really love about these books is that it's not just about the person narrating the story. We still get to find out what is happening in Rachel and Alex's life. Life changes in a major way for Alex, Rachel and Mark seem to have some troubles, we get to see Louis in a completely different light  - and I have to say I think I am starting to love him.

I can't wait to read the third book and am really looking forward to Rachel's story. Plus I want to catch up with Alex and Sarah to see how they are doing. I love these characters - it's a strange thing to admit but I really miss them now I've finished reading.

I really loved this one - even if it did nearly destroy me!

Tuesday 29 November 2011

And By The Way by Denise Deegan

For Review: Hachette Books Ireland
Published: 28 February 2011

From Goodreads: At Strandbrook College, we are Kids Of. Kids of diplomats, media stars, musicians, artists, actors, oh, and wealthy people who aspire to all of that. I'm the kid of a rock star. Means nothing to me. When Mum died, six months ago, I didn't just lose her, I lost my dad -- to work. The only thing he does now is annoy me. He hires people like 'The Stylist' who wears bullets in her belt and makes him look like a hobo. Seriously. But 'The Rockstar' isn't the only person who drives me mad. There's David McFadden, a guy in my class who could have helped but didn't. Now, it's too late. I don't want his help. Because I'm not going to trust anyone, love anyone, rely on anyone. That way I'll never be hurt again. If only I could solve the problem of Rachel, my best friend, who won't let me pull back just like that. Even David McFadden won't stay out of my face. But I'm not going to fall for his blue eyes, his windswept hair or the plaited leather on his wrist. And when he says he wants to help, I'm sure as hell not going to listen...

There is something about this book that really draws you in.  I became really invested in the story and the characters.

We meet Alex six months after her mother has died.  She's adamant that she doesn't want anyone - believes if she 'doesn't do close' she wont get hurt.  But David McFadden refuses to let her push him away - and she starts to believe that maybe she can let people in again...

Alex is a very complicated character.  She is intensely private, refuses to let anyone close - and you can truly see just how completely lost she is.  Her father has buried himself into his work to cope with losing Alex's mum - and is never there.  You can really feel Alex's resentment toward her father - and I completely understood why she pushes him away.  She's kind of fierce and I really loved her for it.

David is a breath of fresh air.  He's just lovely - I wanted to squish him!  I love that he wouldn't let Alex push him away, that he understands what she's going through as he's been there himself, but also in how he actually talks to Alex - listens to her, knows her.  The connection between them feels genuine.

I loved the relationship between Alex and her dad - how it evolves.  How he comes to understand that he really needs to be there for her.  She does lose herself there for a while - but she has a lot to deal with.  I also loved her friendship with Rachel and Sarah.  Even when Sarah is a bit annoying at times it is obvious that these three are really good friends and are completely there for each other. 

There is a lot happening in the story - more than I expected -  and that is what make this great.  I went into it expecting one thing and got so much more!  I'm really looking forward to  And For Your Information - I can't wait to see what is next in store for them all.

Monday 28 November 2011

I want to read that...

Something Like Normal by Trish Doller

From Goodreads: A powerful debut novel about a young Marine's return home from Afghanistan and the new life and love he finds while fending off the ghosts of war.

When Travis Stephenson returns home from Afghanistan, his parents are on the brink of divorce, his brother has stolen his girlfriend and his car, and nightmares of his best friend getting killed keep him completely spooked. But when he runs into Harper Gray, a girl who despises him for trashing her reputation with a middle school lie, life actually starts looking up. As Travis and Harper see more of each other, he starts falling for her and the way through the family meltdown, the post-traumatic stress, and the possibility of an interesting future begins to emerge.

His sense of humor, sense of his own strength, and incredible sense of honor make Travis an irresistible and eminently lovable hero in this fantastic and timely debut novel.

Yep - this sounds SERIOUSLY awesome!  It's published June 2012.

Saturday 26 November 2011

In My Mailbox (119)

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi @ The Story Siren


The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
Someone Else's Life by Katie Dale
Fated by Sarah Alderson
Smoulder by Brenna Yovanoff

Massive thanks to Simon & Schuster for sending these for review.

I also went to a blogger's Party at Atom.  A massive thanks to Atom for organising this (and inviting me!) - it was a great evening.  We got to meet CJ Daugherty and Sarra Manning, got a preview of the 2012 releases and had some lovely food.  Plus there was a goodie bag:

Trapped by Michael Northrop
Night School by CJ Daugherty
The Witch of Turlingham Academy by Ellie Boswell
172 Hours on the Moon by Johan Harstad

And they had a selection of books we could choose from so (as usual) I couldn't resist...

Perfect by Sara Shepard
Unbelieveable by Sara Shepard
Wicked by Sara Shepard
Killer by Sara Shepard
Killing Mr Griffin by Lois Duncan
Don't Look Behind You by Lois Duncan
Quarantine by James Phelan

Thanks Atom!


Saving June by Hannah Hannigton
Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally
Girl at Sea by Maureen Johnson
The Pledge by Kimberly Derting
Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi
Sweet Venom by Tera Lynn Childs
Hold Me Closer, Necromancer by Lish McBride
A Beautiful Dark by Jocelyn Davies
Captivate by Carrie Jones (Audio)
Entice by Carrie Jones (Audio)

I hope everyone had a great week:)

Thursday 24 November 2011

Reaper by Rachel Vincent

From Goodreads:  Tod Hudson was a typical teenager. He liked girls, sports, food and tolerated his younger brother, Nash. In fact, he had his whole life in front of him--and due to his bean sidhe heritage, it was going to be a very long life indeed. And then the car accident occurred.

Suddenly Tod's future wasn't so sure, and he had to make a choice. Life... Death... or something Between....

An ebook exclusive Soul Screamers series novella.

If you are a fan of the Soul Screamers series you really need to read this!  I really enjoyed it and I loved having the story told from Tod's point of view.  If I hadn't been in love with him before reading this I definitely would have been afterwards.

The story is a prequel in the sense it takes place before Tod becomes a reaper.  We get to see what he was like, plus we get to see Nash as a 15 year old and we learn of Sabine.  I've heard it's best to read this after at least the third book in the series and I would have to agree.  I read it between books 3 and 4 and it seemed to fit perfectly.

There's quite a surprising revelation in this story that I really didn't see coming but in retrospect makes so much sense.  I won't go into details here -  it makes you see Tod in a different light but I do wonder if it's been kept a secret all this time.

I love this series - I love this world.  And damn I love Tod!  How did he sneak up on me?  Because I was a major Nash fan at the beginning of this series but somehow Tod has completely won my affections! 

A great addition to the series - I look forward to more of these novellas.

Wednesday 23 November 2011

I want to read that...

Unravelling by Elizabeth Norris

From Goodreads: Two days before the start of her junior year, seventeen-year-old Janelle Tenner is hit by a pickup truck and killed—as in blinding light, scenes of her life flashing before her, and then nothing. Except the next thing she knows, she’s opening her eyes to find Ben Michaels, a loner from her high school whom Janelle has never talked to, leaning over her. And even though it isn’t possible, Janelle knows—with every fiber of her being—that Ben has somehow brought her back to life.

But her reincarnation, and Ben’s possible role in it, is only the first of the puzzles that Janelle must solve. While snooping in her FBI-agent father’s files for clues about her accident, she uncovers a clock that seems to be counting down to something—but to what? And when someone close to Janelle is killed, she can no longer deny what’s right in front of her: Everything that’s happened—the accident, the murder, the countdown clock, Ben’s sudden appearance in her life—points to the end of life as she knows it. And as the clock ticks down, she realizes that if she wants to put a stop to the end of the world, she’s going to need to uncover Ben’s secrets—and keep from falling in love with him in the process.

From debut author Elizabeth Norris comes this shattering novel of one girl’s fight to save herself, her world, and the one boy she never saw coming.

I've seen this described as a cross between 24 and The X Files so YES PLEASE! It really does sound rather good don't you think?

It's published April (US) and June (UK)

Tuesday 22 November 2011

Crossed by Ally Condie

For Review: Puffin
Published: 24 Novemeber 2011

From Goodreads: Rules are different outside the Society.

Chasing down an uncertain future, Cassia makes her way to the Outer Provinces in pursuit of Ky-taken by the Society to his certain death-only to find that he has escaped into the majestic, but treacherous, canyons. On this wild frontier are glimmers of a different life and the enthralling promise of rebellion. But even as Cassia sacrifices everything to reunite with Ky, ingenious surprises from Xander may change the game once again.

Narrated from both Cassia's and Ky's points of view, this hotly anticipated sequel to Matched will take them both to the edge of Society, where nothing is as expected and crosses and double crosses make their path more twisted than ever...

Having really enjoyed Matched I was very excited to read Crossed. And just like Matched, I found myself completely gripped.

This time we get the narrative from both Cassia and Ky and this works amazingly well. Again I found myself falling in love with Ally Condie's writing - it's not action packed and intense in that sense - it's very character driven and intense instead. It's very much about the characters internal journey and I think that is what keeps me gripped.

In Matched I found myself really rooting for Xander. I felt as if Ky represented life outside of the Society for Cassia - a different kind of life - and I wasn't sure if she liked him or the idea of him. By giving us the story from Ky's point of view too she made me fall in love with him. That's not to say I'm not still rooting for Xander - even though he wasn't physically present in very many scenes his presence is still felt heavily in the novel - BUT I think I am now rooting for Ky too. I have no idea how this will all turn out for the three of them but I am desperate to find out!

I also like how similar the narrative style was for both Cassia and Ky. Usually I would want a very distinct difference but in this instance I liked how similar they felt - it made me understand why they were attracted to each other - what the basis of their connection was. There is a subtle difference though. Cassia is very hopeful - maybe even naive - she truly believes she can find a solution and change things. Ky on the other hand is more interested in finding happiness now. He's seen the bad of both sides and doesn't believe that either will be the answer. I think where Matched was Cassia's story this one really is Ky's. It's about his journey - about him getting to where he needs to be - both physically and emotionally.

We are also introduced to some new, and interesting characters. I loved Indie - and have to say I think she could be right about the Pilot. Eli and Hunter are great too and I loved Vick.

I am so looking forward to the next installment. We found out some very interesting things in this one and I can't wait to see where the story goes from here. Also I'm very intrigued about that ending - who exactly was she going to meet? Is it Ky or is it someone else? 

Saturday 19 November 2011

In My Mailbox (118)

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi @ The Story Siren


To Be A Cat by Matt Haig
This sounds really cute!

Sea Hearts (but will be called The Brides of Rollrock Island) by Margo Lanagan
This sounds seriously good!  Plus the cover is awesome!

The Storyteller by Antonia Michaelis
I love the sound of this one! 


Flying Blind by Deborah Cooke
I love the sound of this!  Shape shifting dragons?  Yes please!

Balefire by Cate Tiernan
This is all four books in one volume.  I like the Sweep series so I thought I'd give this a go too.

Boys, Girls and other Hazardous Materials by Rosalind Wiseman
I've heard mixed things about this one but am looking forward to seeing what I think.

Coffeehouse Angel by Suzanne Selfors
I've been looking forward to getting this for a while.  Sounds great!

Awake at Dawn by C C Hunter
The sequel to Born at Midnight - which I still need to read.  Love the covers for this series!

The Little White Horse by Elizabeth Goudge
I am ashamed to say I have never read this.  I love this hardback version.

Hope you all had a great week:)

Thursday 17 November 2011

Eve by Anna Carey

For Review: PGUK (HarperCollins US)
Published: 20 November 2011

From Goodreads: Where do you go when nowhere is safe?

Sixteen years after a deadly virus wiped out most of Earth’s population, the world is a perilous place. Eighteen-year-old Eve has never been beyond the heavily guarded perimeter of her school, where she and two hundred other orphaned girls have been promised a future as the teachers and artists of the New America. But the night before graduation, Eve learns the shocking truth about her school’s real purpose—and the horrifying fate that awaits her.

Fleeing the only home she’s ever known, Eve sets off on a long, treacherous journey, searching for a place she can survive. Along the way she encounters Arden, her former rival from school, and Caleb, a rough, rebellious boy living in the wild. Separated from men her whole life, Eve has been taught to fear them, but Caleb slowly wins her trust... and her heart. He promises to protect her, but when soldiers begin hunting them, Eve must choose between true love and her life.

I'd been looking forward to reading this one for a while so I was really pleased to be offered a review copy. And I am pleased to say it lived up to my expectations.  I really am starting to love dystopian fiction!

I really liked the characters in this one.  Eve is great as the story's narrator.  I found myself automatically liking her - and growing to like her more and more as the story progressed.  She's not always perfect - in fact one mistake she makes has rather devastating consequences - but that just makes her more real.  I adored Arden - she's prickly but underneath all that she obviously cares a great deal.  And Caleb is just lovely.  He's really kind and nice - and it doesn't surprise me that he manages to win Eve's trust.  It's not just Eve, Caleb and Arden that have a strong impact though - many of the other characters we meet throughout the story do too - or at least they did for me.

I also liked the concept behind the novel - a virus that's killed off most of the population, the way the girls are segregated and raised to fear men,  and the true fate that awaits them.  It all feels rather chilling actually - both the purpose of the school and the reality that awaits them outside of it's gates.  One small niggle though is that I don't fully understand the logic behind educating the girls to such a high standard if their fate is already sealed?  But perhaps there are reasons we don't know yet.

I'm very interested to see how this progresses and am really looking forward to Once when it's published.  I have a few ideas about the real reason they seem to be so interested in Eve - I'm not convinced it's for the reason they think it is - I don't think they would be that intent on finding her if it was.  But I guess I'm just going to have to wait to find out!  Roll on 2012!

Wednesday 16 November 2011

Did You Know? Some Book News...

I've had quite a bit of book news emailed to me lately so I thought I'd do a collective post for it all.

Random House have acquired 4 new dystopian novels to be published 2012 -2013.  Here's the press release:

Random House Children’s Books has acquired four new debut dystopian novels for publication in 2012 and 2013. RHCB’s exciting wave of near-future titles, all acquired by Ruth Knowles, include:

Starters by Lissa Price, an American screenwriter, publishing in April 2012, is an action-packed thriller set in a world where eternal youthfulness can be had – at a price. One girl has the ability to bring it all tumbling down . . . RHCB acquired UK and Commonwealth rights from Heather Shapiro at Baror International and will be launching globally alongside Random Inc for a truly international campaign.

A post- apocalyptic Los Angeles is the setting for Struck by Jenifer Bosworth, publishing in July 2012. After the city is devastated by an earthquake, Mia Price finds herself in the middle of a power struggle between two fanatical cults; one that wants to save the world and another that wants to destroy it. RHCB acquired UK and Commonwealth rights from Alex Webb of the Rights People, acting on behalf of FSG.

Sangu Mandanna’s debut The Lost Girl publishes in early 2013 and centres around Eva, a feisty teen girl who technically has no true identity of her own. Eva is forced to abandon everything she's ever known and loved, finding herself torn between two worlds. RHCB acquired UK and Commonwealth rights from Sarah Malloy of A.M. Heath acting on behalf of the Elizabeth Kaplan agency.

And finally, children’s librarian Emma Pass, releases ACID in early 2013. This action-packed novel introduces us to Jenna Strong, a truly kick-ass heroine who is serving time in an all-male prison for the murder of her parents. Set one hundred years in the future in a Big Brother style society; Britain is now under the control of ACID – a terrifying all-seeing police force. RHCB acquired world rights from Carolyn Whitaker of London Independent Books.

Ruth Knowles, Commissioning Editor comments, ‘Dystopian fiction is a much-talked about genre, particularly with the release of The Hunger Games movie next spring. We have acquired some fantastic futuristic thrillers that we know will appeal to this audience, and are confident that RHCB will have some of the most exciting novels in the genre. The worlds within them are very different from each other, but all completely hook you in from the first page and do not let go.’

The all sound AMAZING! Can't wait!


I'm a little late sharing this as I think it's already started but Guardian Teen Books and Random House have partnered on a interactive story you can access online.  Here is the info I was sent:

Guardian Teen Books has partnered with Random House for a new interactive, serialised story called Root - a fast-paced thriller set in the shadowy world of computer hacking and espionage. Every weekday for six weeks a new chapter will be released on The content will be directly influenced by readers’ contributions, such as their ideas for characters' personalities and skills.

The heroine Molly Root is a 15 year old computer genius whose friend Danny is killed after being caught stealing priceless data from a ruthless global corporation. Now she's in over her head. So far Molly Root's mission to get to the bottom of her best friend's murder has taken her on a perilous trail across London. Her key lead is a dodgy police detective - and her attempts to expose his shady contacts are testing her ingenuity to the limits.

As well as incorporating suggestions from readers, the story will also be brought to life via several social media platforms. For example, Guardian Teen Books' Twitter and Facebook accounts will be providing behind the scenes updates of how Molly is progressing, along with clips on Audioboo featuring the voicemails that Molly has discovered. This will be accompanied by onsite quizzes and photo puzzles on Flickr.

I also had an email from the new philanthropic organization called Gone Reading International.  They market a line of gifts for readers and donate 100% of company profits to fund new libraries in the developing world. You can read more about them at  They have some really cute products - personally I'm kind of in love with the Evolution of Reading Tote Bag!  It's awesome, right?


I've also come across a few book bargains if you are like ebooks.

* Tyger Tyger by Kersten Hamilton is $2.75 on Kindle (US) and £1.71 on Kindle (UK).  For Nook users it's available on Barnes and Noble for $2.99.  I believe Apple and Google are also doing it for $2.99.  I really enjoyed it - you can read my review for it here.

* Kiss for Lula by Samantha Mackintosh is currently free on Kindle (on both and  I really need to read this one promto - it sounds awesome!

* The Shadowing: Hunted by Adam Slater is also currently free on Kindle ( on both and  Despite the cover giving me the creeps (!) it does sound rather good!

That's all folks:D

2012 Debut Author Challenge

I've decided to take part in the 2012 Debut Author Challenge - I love discovering new authors and this is a brilliant way to find them.  It's hosted by Kristi @ The Story Siren and you can click here to sign up &  get more info.

In order to complete the challenge you need to read a minimum of 12 YA or MG Debuts during January 1, 2012 - January 31, 2013.

The debuts I'm thinking of reading are:

1: 15 Days Without A Head by Dave Cousins
2: Wonder by R.J. Palacio
3: Someone Else's Life by Katie Dale
4: Fracture by Megan Miranda
5: The Other Life by Susanne Winnacker
6: The Catastrophic History of You & Me by Jess Rothenberg
7: The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
8: Struck by Jennifer Bosworth
9: My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick
10: Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi
11: Starters by Lissa Price
12: Shooting Stars by Allison Rushby
13: Where It Began by Ann Redisch Stampler
14: Tempest by Julie Cross
15: Ditched: A Love Story by Robin Mellom
16: Article 5 by Kristen Simmons

And I'm sure there will be many more that I discover as we get into 2012. And since I have review copies of a few of these there is the chance that I may not be able to control myself and actually wait until 2012 to read them lol.

Books read for the challenge:

1: Someone Else's Life by Katie Dale
2: 15 Days Without A Head by Dave Cousins
3: Lolly Luck by Ellie Daines
4: Everneath by Brodi Ashton
5: Legend by Marie Lu
6: Skin Deep by Laura Jarratt
7: Hollow Pike by James Dawson
8: Wonder by R J Palacio
9: Geekhood by Andy Robb
10: Pushing The Limits by Katie McGarry
11: Saving June by Hannah Harrington
12: Shift by Em Bailey
13: Shooting Stars by Alison Rushby
14: Unravelling by Elizabeth Norris
15: The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin
16:  My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick
17: Crave by Melissa Darnell

Tuesday 15 November 2011

Deadly Cool by Gemma Halliday

From Goodreads: Hartley Grace Featherstone is having a very bad day. First she finds out that her boyfriend is cheating on her with the president of the Herbert Hoover High School Chastity Club. Then he's pegged as the #1 suspect in a murder. And if that weren't enough, now he's depending on Hartley to clear his name. Seriously? Not cool.

But as much as Hartley wouldn't mind seeing him squirm, she knows he's innocent, and she's the only one who can help him. Along with her best friend, Sam, and the school's resident Bad Boy, Chase, Hartley starts investigating on her own. But as the dead bodies begin to pile up, the mystery deepens, the suspects multiply, and Hartley begins to fear that she may be the killer's next victim.

This book is seriously good! It's just so funny - and really enjoyable to read. I loved it.

I really liked Hartley - she's funny, likeable, a bit daft but has a great way with words and is a brilliant narrator for the story.  I also really loved her friend Sam - apparently she is trying to censor her swearing and comes up with some great alternatives.  Plus I liked how she was always there for Hartley.

I really didn't like Josh.  He comes across as a bit of a jerk - and then completely proves it about half way through the story with what he says to Hartley.  If I had been her I would have been very tempted to punch him ... or kick him where it hurts.  Hard!  Not that I advocate violence or anything...

Chase on the other hand is just plain gorgeous!  I completely loved him - that scene in the bedroom (yes he was shirtless but no it's not what you are thinking!) was really funny.  And I have to agree with Sam... I think I would have let him continue...  lol.  But, anyway, I loved the interactions between Chase and Hartley - they definitely have chemistry.

The mystery is really good too - I wasn't sure who it was going to be - so I didn't find it predictable at all.  I really do seem to be losing my skills in that department - but in my defence the book is (and I know I keep saying this) really, really funny so that's a great distraction.

A great first installment in what I hope is many more books in the series.  I am definitely looking forward to Social Suicide when it's released.


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