Saturday, 29 August 2015

Top 5 Favourite Authors

When I first started this blog I made a list of my Five Favourite Authors (post has since been removed because it is included here) and whilst many of the authors I listed still held a place in my heart, I realised that my current favourites are indeed different.

2011 Favourites

5. Melissa Marr
4. Lemony Snicket
3. John Ajvide Lindqvist
2. Stieg Larsson
1. Stephen King

2015 Favourites

5. Sarah J. Maas
4. Jen Meyers
3. Tracy Banghart
2.George R. R. Martin
1. Stephen King

Over the past four years I've been introduced to indie authors, started reading high fantasy, and mcuh more young adult. I love the books I read and I'm so glad I gave indie authors a chance, I wasn't really aware they existed until I started blogging, well I wasn't aware of a lot until then. Have you read any of these authors? If not check them out, if so what are you favourite books by them? Who are your favourite authors?

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Review: Dismissed by Kirsty McManus

by Kirsty McManus

Series: Standalone
Genre: Young Adult / Romance
Length: 166 pages
Published on 28th April 2015
Purchase: Amazon / B&N / The Book Depository
Sarah Crossan: Website | Facebook | Goodreads

Received from author via Xpresso Book Tours

The second Lizzie White lays eyes on her new English teacher Brandon Thomas, she is hooked. Brandon is young, cool and sexy - and nothing like the other teachers at her school. But of course he is forbidden from fraternising with the students or forming any sort out of outside hours relationship. And combined with the fact that Lizzie's best friend Taylor declared her feelings for Brandon first (and has therefore claimed theoretical ownership), Lizzie decides it's all too hard and focuses on a budding relationship with fellow student and class clown Gabe instead. But then Jason shows up. Jason is Brandon's trouble-making twin brother who seems to have no qualms about flirting with students or leaving a trail of broken hearts wherever he goes. Before she knows it, Lizzie is dragged into a confusing world of blurred lines and lustful thoughts, where loyalties are tested and true feelings are explored.
Meet Lizzie our brunnette protagonist and her beautiful blonde-haired best friend as they both pine over a new dreamy teacher.

Who will win in this fight between best friends?

I don't know because I didn't finish the book...

The moment the book did this typical pitting girls against girls when they're best friends but acting as if they don't even get along from the get-go it just hit snooze for me.

I decided to try and keep at it, well for 13% of the book at least but I just couldn't do it. I was just so annoyed and irritated with every character we met, with how they were acting with each other, and I've just had enough. 

The only interesting things that really stood out to me was that Lizzie could beatbox and it wasn't set in the US. 

I feel super bad about not being able to connect with this book as I recieved it for review but I guess its just not for me. I guess I'm just too old for any more highschool drama, I've had my share.

Whilst I didn't finish the book I'm still giving it 2 stars as I didn't hate it and it wasn't badly written.
2 stars / 5 stars

Sunday, 23 August 2015

Bought, Borrowed & Bagged (75)

Bought, Borrowed and Bagged hosted by Talk Supe is a weekly meme where you can share your book haul, ongoing events and news about what is coming up on your blog for the week ahead.
Please Note: All images link back to their GR pages.

New Books
Okay its finally time to share all the Terry Patchett books that my boyfriends sister gave me... I've not read any of these and they're all part of the Discworld series.
The Science of Discworld III: Darwin's Watch (Discworld) Thief of Time (Discworld, #26) The Johnny Maxwell Trilogy Eric (Discworld, #9) The City Watch Trilogy Sourcery (Discworld, #5) The Truth (Discworld, #25) Hogfather (Discworld, #20) The Last Continent (Discworld, #22) Thud! (Discworld, #34) The Fifth Elephant (Discworld, #24) Pyramids (Discworld, #7) Guards! Guards! (Discworld, #8; City Watch #1) Jingo (Discworld, #21) Carpe Jugulum (Discworld, #23) Going Postal (Discworld, #33) Night Watch (Discworld, #29) A Hat Full of Sky (Discworld, #32) Feet of Clay (Discworld, #19) Witches Abroad (Discworld, #12)

Thursday, 20 August 2015

Review: One by Sarah Crossan

by Sarah Crossan

Series: Standalone
Genre: Young Adult / Contemporary
Length: 400 pages
Published on 27th August 2015 by Bloomsbury Children's
Purchase: Amazon / B&N / The Book Depository
Sarah Crossan: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

Received from NetGalley

The ONE book you have to read this summer! The phenomenal new novel from Carnegie-shortlisted author Sarah Crossan; incredibly moving and extraordinarily crafted, it explores the unbreakable bond and love between sisters.

Grace and Tippi are twins – conjoined twins.
And their lives are about to change.
No longer able to afford homeschooling, they must venture into the world – a world of stares, sneers and cruelty. Will they find more than that at school? Can they find real friends? And what about love?

But what neither Grace or Tippi realises is that a heart-wrenching decision lies ahead. A decision that could tear them apart. One that will change their lives even more than they ever imagined…

Earlier this summer I dared to venture onto NetGalley and face my abismal feedback rating over there, and I stumbled across this gem.

One follows twins, Grace and Tippi, who are closer than you and I will ever be. They're conjoined twins and this book follows them as they live their day to day lives of endless hospital and therapy visits, adjusting to starting school for the first time, and coping with a family coming a part at the seems thanks to money issues.

What I think is most important about this book is that it doesn't revolve around the idea of what the girls can and can't do, its focus is more that of their mental state, growth, and friendships - it shows their confidence and how they've adapted to the harsh views and words of the world.

On the other side of things it shows them enjoying their new lives that starting school brings - new friendships, first crushes, a sneakily planned trip, camping, and first kisses. Its adorable and so much fun. 

However this book is as heart-wrenching as the synopsis says, as the money issues continues to put a huge weight on their family, the girls have to make a decision together on how they can try and help out, to try and bring everyones smiles back. 

It was refreshing to see a character that could've easily been a money-grabbing meanie exist as a caring adult the girls ended up leaning on a fair bit instead. 

This is the first book I've read that was written as free verse which I think this was chosen due to a design aesthetic, well at least that is how it seemed to me as somehow it visually represented Grace and Tippi.

I can't even begin to describe the emotions this book made me feel, nor the amount I cried either. It really was an emotional read.
4.5 stars / 5 stars

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Read Play Blog: I relate to who?

Read Play Blog 2
"Read Play Blog is a meme about video games and books, posted every 16th of the month. Bloggers are encouraged to answer a discussion question, and recommend a video game that is similar to a book they liked. Hosted by Happy Indulgence Books & Read Me Away."

Whcih game character(s) do you relate to the most?
Holy hell this is a tough one.

I guess the game characters that I've felt the most sympathy for recently are Mute and Hyun-ae from Analogue: A Hate Story and Hate Plus, though I wouldn't say that I have much in common with these two.

Both of these games are Visual Novels so to play them is just like reading a book, these games in particular you're a captain of the ship and Hyun-ae and Mute are AI's of an abandoned ship. In Analogue you're reading through the ships logs to find out what happened, and every now and then you'll talk with the AI's where you can choose to be mean, friendly or sometimes a little flirty with them.

Its hard to describe the events that happen within this story because there are a lot more aspects from it, but to try and keep it simple you're mostly reading about The Pale Bride - a young girl promised as a wife and childbearer to the Emporer - on the surface she appears to be a polite young girl but you learn that it is Hyun-ae before she became AI, you can tell shes unhappy with a lot of the events, didn't want that life she had, and as you speak to Mute you can tell she's very hostile towards Hyun-ae, even going as far as calling her a mass-murderer.

In Hate Plus you're back on your own ship heading to Earth with the recovered AI's from the first game - you can select your saved data from the first to predetermine who is with you and how they react to you - and this time you're looking through some hidden data that they've just managed to decrypt which you'll read through to find out what happened before Year 0 on the last ship.

Here you learn that the population on board the ship was failing due to radiation from the ship, there are characters you meet who figure this out and are working towards proving and fixing this, but at the same time you're finding out that the government is struggling, they're going through an uprising and think they can handle it, however a secret rebellion are fighting from the inside to take over and aim to "fix" the population by only allowing the women to be wives with the goal to become mothers. The rebellion think this is how things should be and aren't happy with the women in high powered jobs - like the one finding out about the radiation, Mute who is head of security and many others.

This is the game I felt most sympathy for Mute as you find out she has to make a tough decision in hopes to save as many people on board, including herself. The current version of Mute that is reading about her past that she has no knowledge of struggles with this a lot. 

My favourite endings in both of the games is to have both the AI's as you wives because Mute is very hesitant about her feelings towards another woman and having the two interact as they have very different dynamics is fun.

(The game has no nudity but some of the files you read from the past are a little nsfw)


Its not really a surprise when I say the Hate Plus series, at first I found them to be slow but as the events of the stories unfolded and the secrets came out I was super attached to finding out the truth behind the death of everyone aboard the Mugunghwa‍ ship and why there was a gap in the AI's knowledge about the way of life prior to Year 0. The games take place over thousands of years so there is a lot of change within the two.

I've completed both to 100%.

Kind of.
In Hate Plus one of the achievements is impossible to get, I'm not saying this as in its hard, I mean its actually not coded into the game, its just a nod at a Final Fantasy game because there is no way to do this.
The other achievement I've yet to get is email a picture to the developer of myself and Hyun-ae, yes the PC screen, sharing a cake... I've not had any cake to do this so I have yet to be able to get the code to unlock this achievement.

Currently Playing
The Wolf Among Us. Is. Amazing.

I can't even begin to describe how much I'm enjoying this. I feel like I will probably be recommending this next month once I've finished it.
I feel so bad for The Little Mermaid! :(

Sunday, 16 August 2015

Bought, Borrowed & Bagged (74)

Bought, Borrowed and Bagged hosted by Talk Supe is a weekly meme where you can share your book haul, ongoing events and news about what is coming up on your blog for the week ahead.
Please Note: All images link back to their GR pages.

New Books
A few weeks back I mentioned that my boyfriends sister had given me a lot of books for free and at the time I hadn't even attempted to add them all to goodreads. The majority of those books were by Terry Pratchett, however here are the few that weren't by him.

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare is a book I already own so if anyone wants to offer a trade for this then please feel free. Scott Pligrim Volume 1, 2, and 3 by Bryan Lee O'Malley - two of which I've read - the complete Percy Jackson series by Rick Riordan, The Name fo the Star by Maureen Johnson, and The Thin Executioner by Darren Shan.
7942604 Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World (Scott Pilgrim, #2) Scott Pilgrim & the Infinite Sadness (Scott Pilgrim, #3) City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments, #1) 
The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #1) The Sea of Monsters (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #2) The Titan's Curse (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #3) 
The Battle of the Labyrinth (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #4) The Last Olympian (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #5) 
The Name of the Star (Shades of London, #1) The Thin Executioner 
I also forgot to mention ages ago that I purchased A Slip under the Microscope by H.G. Wells and Circles of Hell by Dante for £1 each.
Circles of Hell (Little Black Classics #25)  A Slip Under the Microscope

Saturday, 15 August 2015

Current Plunder & Giveaway: Lumière by Jacqueline Garlick

ère by Jacqueline Garlick
Series: The Illumination Paradox #1
Genre: Young Adult /Steampunk
Length: 335 pages
Published on 12th December 2013 by Amazemo Books
Purchase: Amazon US / Amazon UK / B&N

Even in a land of eternal twilight, secrets can’t stay hidden forever.
Seventeen-year-old Eyelet Elsworth is no stranger to living in the dark. She’s hidden her secret affliction all of her life—a life that would be in danger if superstitious townspeople ever guessed the truth. After her mother is accused and executed for a crime that she didn’t commit, the now-orphaned Eyelet has no choice but to track down the machine—her last hope for a cure. But Eyelet’s late father’s most prized invention, the Illuminator, has been missing since the day of the mysterious flash—a day that saw the sun wiped out over Brethren forever.
Alone and on the run, she finds the Illuminator—only to witness a young man hauling it away. Determined to follow the thief and recover the machine, she ventures into the deepest, darkest, most dangerous part of her twisted world.

Erin Hayes: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Pinterest | Blog
I'm Jacqueline Garlick, author of young adult and new adult fiction. I love strong heroines, despise whiny sidekicks, and adore a good story about a triumphant underdog. (Don't you?)
I love to read, write, paint (walls and paper). I have a love/hate relationship with chocolate, grammar, and technology and would rather hang out with a dog, than a cat. I prefer creating things to cleaning things, and believe laughter is a one-stop-shop solution to all that ails you. You will always find a purple wall (or two) in my house (currently in my writing room), and there may or may not be a hidden passageway that leads to a mystery room. (Okay, so you won't find a hidden passageway, but a girl can dream, can't she?) Oh, and tea. There will always be tea.

My writing style has been described as edgy and rule-breaking, and by some--a touch Tim Burton-esque. Because of this, I am often referred to as the Quentin Tarantino of YA among writing friends.

In my former life, I was a teacher (both grade school and college-don't ask), but more recently I've been a graduate of Ellen Hopkin's Nevada Mentor Program and a student of James Scott Bell, Christopher Vogler and Don Maass. An excerpt from Lumière earned me the 2012 Don Maass Break Out Novel Intensive Scholarship.

Lumière--A Romantic Steampunk Fantasy--my debut novel, is the recipient of an indieBRAG Medallion!!! B.R.A.G. Medallion Honoree October 15, 2014) I am so proud! (LUMIERE by Jacqueline E. Garlick is a B.R.A.G.Medallion Honoree. This tells a reader that this book is well worth their time and money!) Book II of the ILLUMINATION PARADOX SERIES, is out January 26th, now on pre-order.

Also, check out my young adult contemporary romantic/mystery serial, IF ONLY, where reluctant telepathic sleuth Kyla Cooper must embrace her powers and risks all to solve the mystery of what happened to her boyfriend Denver Munro, becoming his voice of truth, before he has no voice at all...

I love hearing from READERS! Please contact me, I'm open to reviews and interview, requests for skype visits, guest blogs, pod casts and book club meetings! I LOVE TO HEAR FROM READERS!