Friday 30 September 2011

Maureen Johnson Competition!

There is a fantastic Maureen Johnson Competition to coincide with the publication of her new book The Name of the Star - it's a great opportunity for fans to meet her!

Here's the information:

To celebrate the publication of Maureen Johnsons new YA thriller The Name of the Star, HarperCollins Children’s Books is offering 10 lucky readers the opportunity to accompany Maureen Johnson on a private Jack the Ripper walk in London on Thursday, 13th October 2011.

The walk begins at 5:00 PM and will carry-on for two hours into the night! Visit the haunting sites of Jack the Ripper and hear first-hand from Maureen how they inspired her new book The Name of the Star.

To enter, simply email for a chance to attend the event with a friend.

Disclaimer: Entrants must be 13 or over. Please ensure that you are available to attend the event on Thursday, 13th October from 5.00pm to 7.00pm before entering. Winners will be informed on Friday, 7th October, and will be provided with further instructions then.
Sounds awesome, right?

Thursday 29 September 2011

Forbidden Blog Tour: Interview with Denver Beck

As part of the blog tour for Forbidden, Jana Oliver let me interview the rather gorgeous Denver Beck! So here we go...

So Beck , I understand you are a Demon Trapper – can you tell us what that involves?
Bein’ a trapper means that I’m responsible to find Hellspawn, capture them in a safe way and then deal with them as required by the law. Sounds real simple, but it isn’t. Demons are pretty clever and if they can find a way to mess ya up, they’ll do it. A trapper has to think on his feet, work out the best way to catch the fiend and to do it without gettin’ himself or others hurt. It’s never a nice job, that’s for sure.

How did you end up working for Paul Blackthorne?
I first met Paul when he was a history teacher in high school. I gave him ten kinds of grief and he just let it roll right off him. That told me he was a really cool dude. When he was laid off from teachin’ he became a trapper. After the Army, I knew I wanted to work with him and he took me on as an apprentice. He was solid, a good man and I sure miss him a lot.

There are many different grades of demon. What the worst demon you’ve ever had to face?
So far it was Grade Five Geo-Fiend that took down Paul. That was one evil mother. Grade Five’s can call up windstorms and earthquakes. They’re hard to kill and darn hard to catch.

Can you tell us a bit more about yourself?
I’m from South Georgia near the Okefenokee Swamp. I don’t have any brothers or sisters. I like things simple and like people who don’t lie to me or treat me like dirt. I graduated from high school, spent three years in the Army and now I’m a trapper. I own my own house and I’m pretty proud of that. It’s nothin’ fancy, but it’s my own place and that means a lot to me.

And if you had to describe yourself in three words what would they be?
Don’t know how best to say that: I’m just me.

Blackthorne’s daughter Riley is also training to be a Demon Trapper. What’s she like?
::sighs:: Riley’s a handful. She’s got that steel backbone her mama had and the smarts of both her parents. She doesn’t take crap from anyone, even when it might be best that she does. She and I, well, we butt heads a lot. We’re both stubborn and that makes it hard. Still, she’s got a future as a trapper. She thinks on her feet and that’s real important. She’s a fine girl and I’m proud to know her.

I get the impression she means a lot to you…
I’m . . .real partial to her. She’s got a lot goin’ for her. She’s pretty and not just on the outside. She’s beautiful inside her heart and all and I’d really like to see her have a good life.

What are your other interests? What music do you love? Do you like to read? And do you actually get any time to do any of these things or is demon trapping more of a 24/7 kind of job?
Trappin’ is pretty much a 24/7 job. I do get to stretch out on the couch every now and then and watch some TV. I don’t read much, but I like to listen to music. Carrie Underwood, Taylor Swift, folks like that. Their songs have a lot of meanin’ to me. And I like to go down to the Armageddon Lounge and play pool. Helps me relax.

Anything else you can share with us? Maybe something that would surprise us…
Hey, if a guy tells ya all his secrets what’s he got left? ::laughs:: I thinkin’ most folks would be surprised to find that I like things tidy. The Army that taught me that. Not that many people ever see inside my house, but I am not a slob. I’ve seen some guys’ places that were pig pens. I’m just different, I guess.
Thanks Beck! Thanks Jana!

You can find Jana at her Website. There is also a Demon Trappers Website for information on the Demon Trappers Series.

The next stop on the tour is tomorrow over at Blogger's Heart Books.

Wednesday 28 September 2011

Naked by Kevin Brooks

For Review: Puffin
Published: 6 October 2011

From Goodreads:  London, 1976: a summer of chaos, punk, love ...and the boy they called Billy the Kid. It was the summer of so many things. Heat and violence, love and hate, heaven and hell. It was the time I met William Bonney - the boy from Belfast known as Billy the Kid. I've kept William's secrets for a long time, but now things have changed and I have to tell the truth. But I can't begin until I've told you about Curtis Ray. Hip, cool, rebellious Curtis Ray. Without Curtis, there wouldn't be a story to tell. It's the story of our band, of life and death ...and everything in between.

This characteristically gripping novel from award-winning author Kevin Brooks will rock you to the core.

Having really enjoyed iBoy by Kevin Brooks I jumped at the chance to review this one. Set in the summer of 1976, it is an atmospheric and realistic tale of a girl's experiences. I was completely and utterly gripped!

Lili is a wonderful character - I loved her and felt that I really understood her. Curtis was someone that I hated and was enthralled by in equal measure - so I perfectly understood why Lili let him get away with what she did. William was by far my favourite character - I loved him and as soon as he entered the picture I knew he would be perfect for Lili.

I have to admit that I am not the biggest fan of music - I just don't have any particular interest in it - but I was completely gripped by this story. I felt as if I was transported back to 1976 and was part of this music scene. The descriptions of the time and the music are incredibly vivid and really bring it all to life.

This is not just a story about music though. I don't want to go into too much detail but there are secrets and violence too - the whole thing is very exciting and very much the gritty, realistic and intense portrayal I am beginning to associate with Kevin Brooks. Having only read iBoy prior to this I am definitely very keen to read more of his work.

Immensely thrilling - music buffs will no doubt be in some kind of heaven. For the rest of us it's an original and mesmerising tale of one girl's experience during the summer of 1976.

Tuesday 27 September 2011

I want to read that...

Article 5 by Kristen Simmons

From Goodreads:  New York, Los Angeles, and Washington, DC have been abandoned.

The Bill of Rights has been revoked, and replaced with the Moral Statutes.

There are no more police — instead, there are soldiers. There are no more fines for bad behavior — instead, there are arrests, trials, and maybe worse. People who get arrested don’t usually come back.

17-year-old Ember Miller is old enough to remember that things weren’t always this way. Living with her rebellious single mother, it’s hard to forget that people weren’t always arrested for reading the wrong books or staying out after dark. That life in the United States used to be different.

In the three years since the war ended, Ember has perfected the art of keeping a low profile. She knows how to get the things she needs, like food stamps and hand-me-down clothes, and how to pass the random home inspections by the Federal Bureau of Reformation. Her life is as close to peaceful as circumstances allow. That is, until her mother is arrested for noncompliance with Article 5 of the Moral Statutes. And what’s worse, one of the arresting officers is none other than Chase Jennings…the only boy Ember has ever loved.

I'm really loving the sound of this one and it's already got some great buzz on Goodreads.

It's published February 2012

Monday 26 September 2011

Strets &Frets Blog Tour: Cover Wars & Guest Post

Struts & Frets has just been released in paperback and has a gorgeous new cover.  Here are the paperback and Hardback side by side. 

Paperback    /   Hardback

What do you think?  I have got to say I really like both.  I'm glad they kept the green colour because I really like that and I think I do prefer the name design on the paperback.  Although you can't see it in the picture the Hardback does have a really cool guitar embossed on the front under the dust jacket which I really like so hmm...  Tough decision but I think the paperback just nabs it.  I really like the spiral-esq spine - which is much clearer on the paperback.

Which do you prefer?

Also, as part of the blog tour Jon kindly stopped by for a guest post - so I shall hand you over...

Personal Alternate History

When I finally let my mother read Struts & Frets, she called me up and said:

“I’m not an alcoholic.”

“Mom, it’s fiction,” I said.

“Well, I was going to buy a bunch of copies and put them in my waiting room, but I don’t see how I can do that if the mother character is an alcoholic therapist. People might think it’s about me.”

After my friend Ryan read Struts & Frets, he asked, “Why did you make me gay?”

“It’s not you,” I said.

“Is it supposed to be Zach, then?”

“Dude, it’s fiction.”

It seems a lot of people want to know where that line is between fiction and reality. But honestly, in my mind there is no clear line between them. Most stories occur to me as a thought exercise. A “what if” question. It can be as simple as, “What if my grandfather had decided to pursue his passion for music professionally instead of becoming a dentist?” A story like that might have many similarities with my own life. Or the question could be something like, “What if I were a teenage girl who discovered on her sixteenth birthday that her mother was a demon?” Clearly, it’s unlikely there would be as many obvious similarities with my own life. But I see no true difference except in degree. I beg, borrow, or steal from my own life as needed. I take two people I know and mash them into one character. I take events from one period in my life and plant them in another. I exaggerate, fabricate, idealize, deconstruct, or destroy whatever is necessary to follow the story to its conclusion.

In Struts & Frets, the main character, Sammy, says this about writing:

“I tried to look at writing a song almost like solving a mystery. The song was there, buried somewhere in my brain. All I had to do was follow the clues until I figured it out.”

I don’t agree with Sammy on everything, but on this we are alike. Because I do believe that all these stories, and all these characters, are somewhere inside me, just waiting to get out. I think that is true for all of us, to a greater or lesser degree.

I think this belief comes from my background as an actor. In particular, a character actor. Back when I was studying theater in college, whenever a director would say, “Hey, we need a punk rock hunchback clown who suffers from Turret’s” or “Hmm, this play calls for a transvestite junkie hooker”, the follow-up question was often, “What’s Skovron working on right now?” Well, okay, that’s not really true. Usually they would first ask, “What’s Zachary Quinto working on right now?” and if he was unavailable, I would do in a pinch.

Being a character actor really means that you have no type, cannot be typecast, and therefore go into the miscellaneous bin for casting. While that was frustrating at times, it also made things very interesting. I had to be so many different, contrasting people. I had to find a part of myself, no matter how small or warped, that I could use to bring some authenticity to the bizarre procession of roles I played throughout my brief career on the stage.

A few years of playing some of the most outlandish characters imaginable made me rather flexible when it came to the concept of identity. Inevitably, I had to ask myself: while these other “selves” were not real, did that make them any less true? I have not, and will not ever marry a Chinese man thinking he is a geisha. And yet when I played Rene Gallimard in M Butterfly, my performance resonated with the audience in a way that no retelling of my real life could have. I don’t think performing a series of pratfalls and pantomime while discussing remuneration in iambic pentameter would win me many friends at the office, but when I did that as Costard the clown in Loves Labor’s Lost, the audience thought it was hilarious.

So is it artifice? Whether it’s fiction or theater, am I lying to the audience in a pleasing and entertaining way? Or am I just telling a different kind of truth? One that is not so caught up in the technicalities of what actually happened, but more captures the spirit of what was, is, or could be possible, if only we open ourselves up to it.

In the end, does it matter which events in a piece of fiction actually happened, as long as the story rings true? Ralph Waldo Emerson had this to say:

“Fiction reveals truth that reality obscures.”
Thanks Jon!

The Struts & Frets Tour continues tomorrow over at Serendipity Reviews.

Saturday 24 September 2011

In My Mailbox (110)

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi @ The Story Siren


Wreckers by Julie Hearn
Witchfinder: Dawn of the Demontide by William Hussey
Witchfinder: Gallows at Twilight by William Hussey
Witchfinder: The Last Nightfall by William Hussey
Devoted by Hilary Duff
Goliath by Scott Westerfeld
Verity Fibbs by Cathy Brett
This Dark Endeavour by Kenneth Oppel
The Mist by Kathryn James
Sweetly by Jackson Pearce
Embrace by Jessica Shirvington

A massive thanks to everyone who sent books for review this week:)

I also went to two events in London this week.  First up was Bloomsbury where we got to meet Mary Hooper.  She's awesome!  We got to ask questions plus have our books signed.  Bloomsbury were extremely generous and spoilt us with goodie bags ( and the most delicious cupcakes!  I've been dreaming about those cupcakes...)

Velvet by Mary Hooper
The Fever and the Flame by Mary Hooper
Fracture by Megan Miranda
In Darkness by Nick Lake
The Weight of Water by Sarah Crossan
This is Not Forgiveness by Celia Rees

Next up was OUP where we got to meet Joss Stirling and Dave Cousins.  It was a fab night - it was great to catch up with fellow bloggers, chat with the authors - both Joss Stirling and Dave Cousins are awesome -  and it was lovely to meet the team at OUP.  They were also super generous spoiling us with a goodie bag and hot chocolate!

Stealing Phoenix by Joss Stirling
15 Days Without a Head by Dave Cousins.
Mortal Chaos by Matt Dickinson

Big thanks to Bloomsbury and OUP :D 


Zombie Blondes by Brian James
I kissed a Zombie, and I Liked It by Adam Selzer
The Summer of Skinny Dipping by Amanda Howells
Sisters in Sanity by Gayle Forman
Something Like Fate by Susane Colasanti


Candy by Kevin Brooks  Thanks Becky:D

Hope you all had a great week:)

Thursday 22 September 2011

Dark Touch: Shadows by Amy Meredith

From Goodreads:  Fifteen-year-old Eve Evergold is cute, sassy and enjoying a busy social life. What she doesn't know yet is that someone close to her is an evil demon that only she has the supernatural power to defeat. She needs to work out who it is - and fast! Because although there's something very attractive about the dark a demon? Pure hell!

The is a fun start to the series. Centered around Eve and her new found supernatural abilities, it follows her investigating the strange happenings in her home town of Deepdene.

As I said this book is fun and it knows it. It doesn't take itself too seriously and that's why it worked for me. Eve and her best friend Jess are typical teenage girls - very into clothes and makeup - typical girly things. But they obviously care for each other which is nice. We are also introduced to Luke - who manages to annoy Eve within seconds of being in her company - and the mysterious Mal. Both are interesting but Luke was definitely my favourite.

Quick to read and not too heavy - I read the rest of the series back to back because I liked them so much. I hope there are many more to come - they are definitely a guilty pleasure of mine.

Sneak Peek of Crossed!

From Goodreads:  The hotly awaited second book in the dystopian Matched trilogy

In search of a future that may not exist and faced with the decision of who to share it with, Cassia journeys to the Outer Provinces in pursuit of Ky - taken by the Society to his certain death - only to find that he has escaped, leaving a series of clues in his wake.

Cassia's quest leads her to question much of what she holds dear, even as she finds glimmers of a different life across the border. But as Cassia nears resolve and certainty about her future with Ky, an invitation for rebellion, an unexpected betrayal, and a surprise visit from Xander - who may hold the key to the uprising and, still, to Cassia's heart - change the game once again. Nothing is as expected on the edge of Society, where crosses and double crosses make the path more twisted than ever.

I an so looking forward to this book!  It's published 24 November 2011. And for those of you that can't wait there is an exclusive peek at the first chapters of Crossed over at EW.Com.

For all the latest new about this trilogy check out

Tuesday 20 September 2011

Cover to Covet (19)

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

I absolutely LOVE this cover! It's really pretty but also haunting too. I must admit I've been meaning to read this one for a while as it sounds amazing!

I shall leave you with the equally awesome book trailer:

It's published in paperback by Indigo on 29 September 2011

Monday 19 September 2011

Sean Griswold's Head by Lindsey Levitt

From Goodreads:  According to her guidance counselor, fifteen-year-old Payton Gritas needs a focus object—an item to concentrate her emotions on. It's supposed to be something inanimate, but Payton decides to use the thing she stares at during class: Sean Griswold's head. They've been linked since third grade (Griswold-Gritas—it's an alphabetical order thing), but she's never really known him.

The focus object is intended to help Payton deal with her father's newly diagnosed multiple sclerosis. And it's working. With the help of her boy-crazy best friend Jac, Payton starts stalking—er, focusing on—Sean Griswold . . . all of him! He's cute, he shares her Seinfeld obsession (nobody else gets it!) and he may have a secret or two of his own.

In this sweet story of first love, Lindsey Leavitt seamlessly balances heartfelt family moments, spot-on sarcastic humor, and a budding young romance.

I picked this one up not knowing much about it - it is one of the books for the comtemps challenge so I bought it to read as part of the challenge. I am so glad I did because it really is rather brilliant.

It follows Payton and her life after she learns her dad is diagnosed with MS. She doesn't take the news very well and goes to see a counsellor at her school. She suggests Payton find a focus object so she decides to use Sean Griswold's head...

This book is so much more than I realised it would be. It is seriously funny! There is one scene involving a bike ride that had me nearly wetting myself with laughter. But at the same time it is an honest and poignant portrayal of someone coming to terms with their father's illness.

The relationship between Payton and Sean is done well too. A genuine friendship develops between the two - it's very sweet and I'm a big fan of this type of romance.

I really enjoyed this one and will definitely be checking out more of Leavitt's work in the future.

Saturday 17 September 2011

In My Mailbox (109)

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi @ The Story Siren

For Review:

The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter
I read this one already and really enjoyed it!  I loved Henry!  I'll be posting my review for it soon.

Pure by Julianna Baggot
This sounds so good!  And I love the black proof.

Ashes by Ilsa Bick
I have been dying to read this one so I can't wait to get stuck in.

The Witches of the Glass Castle by Gabriella Lepore
Magic and a witchcrafting heritage?  Yes please!

Massive thanks to everyone who sent books for review:)


Well...  it would appear any hint of willpower went out the window this week!  Ooops.

Sweep Volume 1 by Cate Tiernan
I read the first one of these ages ago and really enjoyed it.  I love these US bind ups so I got the first volume.  I'm now really tempted to get the rest lol.

Spellbound by Cara Lynn Shultz
I thought this one sounded good.

Megan Meade's Guide to the McGowan Boys by Kate Brian
Geek Magnet by Kieran Scott
I really enjoyed She's So Dead To Us and He's So Not Worth It so I wanted to try some other books by her.  Both of these sound great.

Hunger by Jackie Morse Kessler
I have been meaning to read this for ages. And I love the cover.  It's going to be a quick read though - it's not that big.

Deadly Little Lies by Laurie Faria Stolarz
The Second book in the touch series.  Love the covers for them.

Sister Missing by Sophie McKenzie
A Waterstone's exclusive signed edtiion - how could I resist?  There are some extras in the back too.

Jekel Loves Hyde by Beth Fantaskey
I still haven't read Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side but I thought this one sounded too good to resist.

For Keeps by Natasha Friend
Someone compared this one to The Gilmore Girls.  I love The Gilmore Girls so that pretty much sold it to me. 

Academy 7 by Anne Osterlund
This sounded really different and I really fancied giving it a try.

Wake Unto Me by Lisa Cach
This was one of my I want to read that... posts a while back.  Looks great.

How I Live Now by Meg Rosof
I keep hearing so many great things about this one I had to get it.  Hope it lives up to my expectations!

Breathless by Jessica Warman
I finished Between and ordered this one straight away.  I really liked Between so I hope this one is just as good.

It's For Your Own Good by Jane Cuff
Jane Cuff was in our store signing copies so I couldn't resist getting myself a signed one.  Sounds really good fun.

Angel Fire by L A Weatherly

So,  despite pretty much bankrupting myself I had a good week:)

Hope you all have a great week:)

Thursday 15 September 2011

Stealing Phoenix by Joss Stirling

For Review: OUP
Published: 1 September 2011

From Goodreads: Yves' story.

This is about getting you out...I'm stealing you.

Phoenix belongs to the Community - a gang of thieves with paranormal powers. Yves Benedict - an American student visiting London - is her mark. But Yves turns out to be more than just a target. He is her destiny. Her soulmate. But the Community owns Phoenix's past and it wants her future too.

Being a big fan of Finding Sky I was really looking forward to catching up with those Benedict boys!

This time the story is centered around Yves and his soulfinder Phoenix. Told from her point of view we are thrust into her world of thievery and danger. The Seer really is rather scary!

I loved Phoenix! She's feisty, strong and the perfect match for Yves. And Yves is just as gorgeous as I remember him from Finding Sky. In fact all the Benedict boys are rather gorgeous and I love the banter between them. How they tease each other but obviously care for each other. I love the sense of family there is in these stories.  Plus it's great to catch up with Sky and Zed and see how they are doing.

There is a bit of predictability in the sense you go into this knowing it will all work out - but the journey getting there is sooo much fun! I really hope there are many more in this series - especially for Xav and Victor (there is something about him I just love!). I'd also like to know a bit more about how they know when they've found their soulfinder. In both instances it's been Zed or Yves that's known so I just wondered if there is a reason for that. Plus is there a reason both Sky and Phoenix are English? But maybe I'm just over thinking it. 

A really, really enjoyable series and I can't wait to get my next fix!

Tuesday 13 September 2011

I want to read that...

Kiss Crush Collide by Christina Meredith

From Goodreads: Leah has the life most high school girls would kill for—popularity, glowing grades, a rich, athletic boyfriend. So why does she feel like she can’t breathe? And why can’t she stop thinking about the boy from the country club? The one who isn’t her boyfriend, the one that her mother would never, ever approve of, the one that her perfect older sisters would never, ever look at twice. The one who is always looking back at her. Irresistible attraction, smoldering glances, the bad boy and the good girl—Kiss Crush Collide has everything that a steamy forbidden romance should, and then some.

With graceful and honest writing and an electric love story, this is a book about growing into your own skin. For fans of Perfect Chemistry, Sarah Dessen, and John Green.

Comparing it to Perfect Chemistry totally sold it for me! It sounds really, really good!

It's published December 2011

Monday 12 September 2011

Shelter by Harlan Coben

From Goodreads: Mickey Bolitar’s year can’t get much worse. After witnessing his father’s death and sending his mom to rehab, he’s forced to live with his estranged Uncle Myron and switch high schools.

A new school comes with new friends and new enemies, and lucky for Mickey, it also comes with a great new girlfriend, Ashley. For awhile, it seems like Mickey’s train-wreck of a life is finally improving — until Ashley vanishes without a trace. Unwilling to let another person walk out of his life, Mickey follows Ashley’s trail into a seedy underworld that reveals that this seemingly sweet, shy girl isn’t who she claimed to be. And neither was Mickey’s father. Soon, Mickey learns about a conspiracy so shocking that it makes high school drama seem like a luxury – and leaves him questioning everything about the life he thought he knew.

First introduced to readers in Harlan Coben’s latest adult novel, Live Wire, Mickey Bolitar is as quick-witted and clever as his Uncle Myron, and eager to go to any length to save the people he cares about. With this new series, Coben introduces an entirely new generation of fans to the masterful plotting and wry humor that have made him an award-winning, internationally bestselling, and beloved author.

Being a big fan of Harlan Coben's adult novels I was super excited to hear he was writing a YA novel. So when I realised it was going to be set in the same world as his Myron Bolitar novels I practically keeled over in excitement. I was desperate to get my hands on a copy, so when a friend offered me the chance to read an advance copy I (obviously) accepted and ran home to read it. And I can honestly say it lived up to all my expectations and then more!

First off, you don't have to have read Harlan Coben's other novels to understand this one. It works as an excellent introduction to the world. But on the other hand, the other books are seriously good so I would recommend giving them a try.

Mickey Bolitar is such a fantastic character. Written with humour he is incredibly likeable as our lead. I also loved the kooky friends, especially Ema. And of course I loved Myron - I'm hoping him and Mickey develop a really good relationship over the course of the series.

The story was exciting - I didn't want to stop reading! And the ending means I'm now dying to read the next book in the series. I've been waiting for a series like this - one that takes everything I enjoy about adult crime thrillers and gives it a YA spin. I loved it!

This won't mean anything to those of you not familiar with the Myron Bolitar books but I was hoping for a cameo from Win - so I was a little disappointed that wasn't the case. I know his absence was explained in Live Wire but I'll still keep hoping that he will turn up in this series because he's one of my favourite characters!

But I'm digressing - this is a great start to what I'm convinced will be a brilliant series. As soon as it's listed I'll be ordering the next one! Fantastic - I really loved it!

Saturday 10 September 2011

In My Mailbox (108)

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi @ The Story Siren


Lisel & Po by Lauren Oliver
This looks sooo gorgeous.  I really need to read it and soon!

Wildefire by Karsten Knight
How beautiful is this cover!  I've been recommended this one and it looks really good.

A Need So Beautiful by Suzanna Young
I loved The Naughty List so I'm looking forward to trying this.  Sounds great!  Plus I love the cover:)

Until The End by Christopher Pike
As you have all probably guessed I love Christopher Pike -  Massive, massive fan and I love these new editions!

Undead by Kirsty Mckay
This sounds amazing and I've heard great things!  Plus it's about Zombies so yay!

Blood Bound by Rachel Vincent
I luurvve Rachel Vincent's books so I am really looking forward to this new series.

Enthralled by Melissa Marr & Kelley Armstrong
I'm addicted to these short story collections. 

The Beginning of After by Jennifer Castle
I've already read this one and I loved it!  You can read my review here.

Hope you all had a great week:)

Friday 9 September 2011

Mary Hooper Blog Tour: Tricks of the Trade, Extract and Giveaway!

As part of the UK Blog Tour for her new book Velvet, Mary kindly stopped by to talk about the tricks of the trade.  So I will hand you over...

The Tricks of the Trade :  The Spirits Speak

This trick is still worked now, and depends upon the medium having an accomplice planted in the audience. When the envelopes containing the audience’s questions have all been collected, the medium is handed the first envelope and, without opening it, answers the question inside. The person who asked the question (the accomplice) appears very impressed, following which the medium opens the envelope in order to read the question out. What they actually do, however, is open a genuine envelope from someone in the audience, memorise the question and throw it away. They then pick up the next sealed envelope and pretend to use the spirits to answer the question inside, when what they are really doing is answering the question from the one opened earlier. They repeat this process over and over again, letting the ‘spirits’ answer and staying one envelope ahead the whole time.
Thanks Mary!  I always wondered how they did it!

You can find Mary Hooper in the following places:


Here is the synopsis for Velvet, taken from Goodreads: 

Rose is a laundress in a Victorian steam laundry. With both her mother and father dead, she is an orphan and has to rely upon her own wits to make a living. The laundry is scalding, back-breaking work and Rose is desperate to create a better life for herself. Then Rose is noticed by Madame X, a famed medium, who asks Rose to come to work for her. Rose is dazzled at first by the young yet beautifully dressed and bejewelled Madame. But soon Rose realises that Madame X is not all that she says she is, and Rose's very life is in danger ...A romantic and thrillingly exciting new novel from an acclaimed and much-loved historical writer for teens.

Sounds awesome doesn't it!   Here's a little taster for you...

Velvet Chapter 1[1]

Plus, I  have one set of Mary’s historical fiction titles to giveaway:

At the Sign of the Sugared Plum, Petals in the Ashes, The Remarkable Life and Times of Eliza Rose, At the House of the Magician, By Royal Command, The Betrayal, Fallen Grace and Velvet!

The giveaway is open to UK entrants only.  Closing date is 16 September 2011.  Just fill in the form below to enter.  Good luck:)

This giveaway is now closed.

Wednesday 7 September 2011

The Beginning of After by Jennifer Castle

For Review: Netgalley
Published: 6 September 2011

From Goodreads: Anyone who’s had something truly crappy happen to them will tell you: It’s all about Before and After. What I’m talking about here is the ka-pow, shake-you-to-your-core-and-turn-your-bones-to-plastic kind of crappy.

Sixteen-year-old Laurel’s world changes instantly when her parents and brother are killed in a terrible car accident. Behind the wheel is the father of her bad-boy neighbor, David Kaufman, whose mother is also killed. In the aftermath of the tragedy, Laurel navigates a new reality in which she and her best friend grow apart, boys may or may not be approaching her out of pity, overpowering memories lurk everywhere, and Mr. Kaufman is comatose but still very much alive. Through it all there is David, who swoops in and out of Laurel’s life and to whom she finds herself attracted against her better judgment. She will forever be connected to him by their mutual loss—a connection that will change them both in unexpected ways.

Jennifer Castle’s debut novel is a heart-wrenching, surprisingly witty testament to how drastically life can change in the span of a single moment.

As soon as I first heard about this one I was desperate to read it - it just sounded amazing - and something I would love.

The story is centered around Laurel and how her life changes dramatically when her parents and brother are killed in a car crash.  In an instant her life has completely changed..  Everything is now divided into Before and After as she tries to live her life without them..  Trying to process her grief and move on with her life, she finds herself having a strong connection with David.  He's grieving too as he lost his mother in the crash and his father was the one driving the car.  So they both understand what the other is going through. Will they be able to help each other?  And how do you move on from such a devastating loss?

I devoured this book.  It was so good I couldn't pull myself away from it.  I fell in love with all the characters - especially Laurel and David.  Laurel is likeable and honest, and obviously grieving.  She's desperately trying to live her life without the weight of what has happen crippling her but it's obviously a fine line.  She uses everyday things to maintain the balance -  to get her through the days.  David on the other hand spends most of his time running - seemingly unable to stay still.  The connection between the two really comes across - giving both characters something they can hold on to.

I loved Jennifer Castle's writing.  It's so easy to get lost in it.  It felt real - as if I was being given the opportunity to experience a slice of these characters lives. It made me cry and smile - a whole host of emotions.   It's so much more that just a typical story about loss and grieving.  It's a great debut and I highly recommend it.  I can't wait to read more books by this author.

Tuesday 6 September 2011

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Sequels I'm Dying To Read

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and Bookish.

Despite having  many, many sequels sat on my bookshelves that I am dying to read but haven't yet read (!) there are also some that have not been published yet  (or even possibly written!) that I can't read to read.  Here are my top ten of those (in no particular order) ...

1: The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead
I loved Bloodlines and thought it was an awesome start to the series!  I can't wait for this - especially after that last line...

2:  Mickey Bolitar 2 by Harlan Coben
I have no idea what this will be called or when it's going to be published - it's not listed on Goodreads yet,   BUT I WANT IT!  Shelter is awesome - everything I hoped it would be - and I am so excited about the series!

3: Losing Lila by Sarah Aldersen
Hunting Lila is amazing!  And Alex is H.O.T!  Cant wait for more - although I am slightly concerned by the title...

4: Perception by Kim Harrington
Loved Clarity - kind of Veronica Mars with a psychic twist.  And I'm rooting for Justin - just so you know!

5: Angel Fire by L A Weatherly
OMG! How much do I want to read this one?  Yep, CANNOT WAIT!!!!

6: Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver
I will be reading this one the minute I get my hands on it.

7: Insurgent by Veronica Roth
I want this one sooooo badly! I absolutely LOVED Divergent.

8: A Million Suns by Beth Revis
I was surprised by how much I love Across The Universe - such a great opening too.  I'm dying to know that happens next.

9: Hex Hall 3 by Rachel Hawkins
More Archer Cross? Yes please:)  Plus I have to know what happens next considering how the last one ended!

10: Silence by Becca Fitzpatrick
Another one I want to read as soon as I have it in my hands. I loved Hush Hush and Crescendo and cannot wait to read the conclusion to this series. And ,of course,  that means spending more time with the delectable Patch...

What are your top ten sequels you are dying to read?

Book Trailer of the Month: Between by Jessica Warman

I love this trailer. Really simple but very effective. I love the way it looks like you are viewing everything through wet glass. Beautiful and slightly eerie!

What do you think?

Monday 5 September 2011

I want to read that...

This Is Not A Test by Courtney Summers

From Goodreads: It’s the end of the world. Six students have taken cover in Cortege High but shelter is little comfort when the dead outside won’t stop pounding on the doors. One bite is all it takes to kill a person and bring them back as a monstrous version of their former self. To Sloane Price, that doesn’t sound so bad. Six months ago, her world collapsed and since then, she’s failed to find a reason to keep going. Now seems like the perfect time to give up.

As Sloane eagerly waits for the barricades to fall, she’s forced to witness the apocalypse through the eyes of five people who actually want to live. But as the days crawl by, everyone’s motivations to survive begin to change in startling ways and soon the group’s fate is determined less and less by what’s happening outside and more and more by the unpredictable and violent bids for life–and death–inside.

When everything is gone, what do you hold on to?

Courtney Summer AND ZOMBIES!!!  OMG! How awesome does that sounds???  I always do a happy dance whenever Courtney Summers has a new book coming out because I absolutely LOVE her books!  When I heard it was going to be about zombies I did a ridiculous (and very embarrassing) version of a squee/fist pump/happy dance combo that I can only be glad no one saw (at least I don't think they did...)

My only complaint?  I have to wait UNTIL JUNE NEXT YEAR!  *sobs*

Oh and I luurrvvvee the cover!  The blood splatters in the corner are ace and I love the blue colour!

Saturday 3 September 2011

In My Mailbox (107)

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi @ The Story Siren


Marshmallow Skye by Cathy Cassidy
Loved the first book in this series!  And the covers are so lovely!

Chronosphere: Malfunction by Alex Woolf
I still need to read the first in the series but I love the sound of them.

And by the Way by Denise Deegan
And for Your Information by Denise Deegan
These both sound awesome and I've heard great things about the series!

Big thanks to everyone who sent books for review:)


Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare
I found a US Hardback of this really cheap (In The Works)  so I couldn't resist! It's so pretty!

Heist Society by Ally Carter
I seriously can't wait to read this - I've been looking forward to it for ages.

Fire and Roses by Fiona Dunbar
I enjoyed the first book in this series so I'm looking forward to catching up with Kitty and co.

Oh My Gods by Tera Lynn Childs
I really enjoyed Forgive My Fins so really wanted to read this series.  Love the cover too:)

The Predicteds by Christine Seifert
This sounds very 'minority report'.  Something different I thought.

A Funny Thing About Love (Dancing Queen; Prom Crashers; Drive Me Crazy) by Erin Downing
I really enjoyed the Simon Pulse romantic comedies that I've read and this one has 3 in one volume - bargain!

Beyond the Grave by Mara Purnhagen
I really need to catch up with this series!

Where I Belong by Gwendolyn Heasley
Set in Texas? Yes please:)

Lie by Caroline Bock
This sounds amazing!  

Anglefire by Courtney Allison Moulton
I've been wanting to read this one for ages. It's bigger than I thought! And it looks sooooo good.

Plus when I made the mistake of going into The Works I ended up buying some Jill Mansell titles and the rest of the Weather Warden series.  I have no willpower lol.

Hope you all had a great week:)

Cover Wars: Fateful by Claudia Gray


According to Amazon this is the UK cover for Fateful and I love it!  I like the US one too but I just love the colours on the UK one - I think it's the red!  Pretty!

What do you think?

Friday 2 September 2011

Bleeding Hearts by Alyxandra Harvey: Extract

From Goodreads: The Drakes and friends will be tested when an infestation of deadly vampires threatens Violet Hill.

Lucy's cousin Christabel has come to live in Violet Hill, and adjusting to the difference between life in a small mountain town and her home in the city is difficult enough. The strict curfew that Lucy's parents enforce is the worst part. Something really dangerous couldn't possibly happen in this tiny town.

But Christabel has noticed some mysterious happenings, and it seems like Lucy, her boyfriend Nicholas and his brother Connor are all in on a secret that Christabel doesn't understand—one that seems deadly serious. Although she won't admit it, Christabel would love to be in on any secret with Connor Drake. But when she is kidnapped by the ruthless Hel-Blar vampires, Christabel must cause more and more trouble in Violet Hill, Lucy and Connor finally fill Christabel in on all the undead drama. Together, they must find a way to stamp out the Hel-Blar for good.

I love this series and can't wait to read this one! More Lucy and Nicholas - yes please! Here's an extract for all of you who can't wait until October.

Bleeding Hearts Prologue[1]


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