Monday, 29 August 2016

Kingdom of the Faeries #1- Banter is the way forward



Title: Edenhart's Rivalry 
Author: J.N. Tomczak
Published: 11th February 2016
My Rating: 4/5
Recommend: Yes
Synopsis:



A dark power is rising, and a kingdom is in dire need of a leader when the King of the Faeries falls in battle. Or so, that’s what they’re led to believe, but his only heir and daughter, Aurora, suspects murder.


But when she and her loyal friend Percy, the Captain of the Elite Guard, discover an ancient prophecy foretold by the enigmatic Faerie Sorcerers, Aurora finds herself an unwilling pawn in a dark plot that will threaten everything she holds dear.


Her courage and magic will be her greatest weapons if she hopes to succeed where all others have failed. But will she? Aurora must ask herself this very question: just how far is she willing to go to save her kingdom, and at what costs?
 



I received this book in an exchange for an honest review

I cried so much in this story, why did you do this???? WHY!!!! PLEASE ANSWER ME!!! NOOOO!!!!!! :'(

I cannot find the words to write this review, I can't decide whether I love this book or hate it. Did he have to die? I had so much hope for him. I was expecting him to whisk Aurora away to a place and bond that was everlasting but then this happened. What's going to happen to Aurora now?

I'm not making any sense am I? Getting ahead of myself again, right

This book had everything from Faeries to Goblins to dragons, this book is a perfect illustration of fantasy . Magic is a very important element in this book, nearly everyone is lusting after it. It had the usual storyline; war is happening, battle between good vs evil, one heroine who is destined to unite all the kingdoms and save the world. I must say, I really enjoyed the prophecy, I mean like really really really enjoyed it. I was desperate to know more and I still want to, what is Aurora destined for?
Aurora's father travels to the dweor land (goblin in case your wondering what it means) only to be murdered by their leader, heartbroken Aurora is now forced to lead her kingdom and people. Something she didn't think would happen so soon. Trouble starts brewing on her coronation day, war is coming and Aurora must warn the other kingdoms. However, that is easier said then done. Aurora loses so much in such a short amount of time, her loved ones are murdered, new allies are made and a possible new love interest. 

I really enjoyed Aurora's character evolving. Aurora is a leader and a force to be reckoned with, she is constantly trying to live up to that status and be like her father. I think she needs to give herself more credit, she is a lot stronger than she thinks. It was such a pleasure to see her finally become her own person, be more confident in her decisions and stand up for herself. I feel like she sometimes tries to please everyone instead of doing what she thinks is right and going with her gut feeling. It was nice to see she had a few people she could count on like Percy (very cute), Mitas (so wise) and then finally Tristan (oh his silver eyes). Now Tristan is a enigma. I loved how confident he is of himself not to mention strong, but more than that he is a mystery. He is hiding something and he doesn't fool anyone. I want to know what he is hiding, what happened to him? I also hope he is the potential love interest for Aurora. I loved their bickering so much! They are both headstrong and stubborn! Yay!

The story is beautifully written, I honestly cannot believe this is one of her first projects but I love it so much! I could imagine every scene that was being described to me, I could almost just taste the blood in the battlefield, the clunk of every sword, death in the air. 

I had two major problems with this story and stopped it from being a 5 star, one the book was very descriptive which meant my brain was on overload. Too much information thrown at me made it hard for me to get in to the book. Secondly, I thought there were some area's that could have been explored in more depth, such as I would have liked to known more about the prophecy. 



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Thursday, 25 August 2016

Waiting on Wednesday: Given To The Sea - Protect The Kingdom

"Waiting on" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.



Title: Given To The Sea
Author: Mindy McGinnis
Series: N/A
Release Date: 11th April 2017
Synopsis:


Khosa is Given to the Sea, a girl born to be fed to the water, her flesh preventing a wave like the one that destroyed the Kingdom of Stille in days of old. But before she’s allowed to dance – an uncontrollable twitching of the limbs that will carry her to the shore in a frenzy – she must produce an heir. Yet the thought of human touch sends shudders down her spine that not even the sound of the tide can match.

Vincent is third in line to inherit his throne, royalty in a kingdom where the old linger and the young inherit only boredom. When Khosa arrives without an heir he knows his father will ensure she fulfills her duty, at whatever cost. Torn between protecting the throne he will someday fill, and the girl whose fate is tied to its very existence, Vincent’s loyalty is at odds with his heart.

Dara and Donil are the last of the Indiri, a native race whose dwindling magic grows weaker as the island country fades. Animals cease to bear young, creatures of the sea take to the land, and the Pietra – fierce fighters who destroyed the Indiri a generation before – are now marching from their stony shores for the twin’s adopted homeland, Stille.

Witt leads the Pietra, their army the only family he has ever known. The stone shores harbor a secret, a growing threat that will envelop the entire land – and he will conquer every speck of soil to ensure the survival of his people.

The tides are turning in Stille, where royals scheme, Pietrans march, and the rising sea calls for its Given





OMG!! I love that cover! How amazing is that???

What are you waiting on this week? Let me know in the comments below!

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Monday, 22 August 2016

ARC Review: The Square Root of Summer - Never stop moving forward



Title: The Square Root of Summer
Author: Harriet Reuter Hapgood
Published: 3rd May 2016
My Rating: 3/5
Recommend: Yes
Synopsis:

This is what it means to love someone. This is what it means to grieve someone. It's a little bit like a black hole. It's a little bit like infinity.

Gottie H. Oppenheimer is losing time. Literally. When the fabric of the universe around her seaside town begins to fray, she's hurtled through wormholes to her past:

To last summer, when her grandfather Grey died. To the afternoon she fell in love with Jason, who wouldn't even hold her hand at the funeral. To the day her best friend Thomas moved away and left her behind with a scar on her hand and a black hole in her memory.

Although Grey is still gone, Jason and Thomas are back, and Gottie's past, present, and future are about to collide—and someone's heart is about to be broken.

With time travel, quantum physics, and sweeping romance, The Square Root of Summer is an exponentially enthralling story about love, loss, and trying to figure it all out, from stunning debut YA voice, Harriet Reuter Hapgood.
 




I received this book in an exchange for an honest review

I am utterly baffled at this book, there is honestly no other way to explain I have no freaking idea what this book is about (so how do I type up this review?). So I thought the book was absolutely amazing even if I had no idea what Gottie was talking about, I felt like I needed someone to translate what she was saying in very simple words. But hey, I think I got the jist of it, Gottie was at two places at the same time, the past and the present. So she tries to figure out how that is possible which leads to all the mathematical theories which I have no idea what they mean. You know that student in Math class that would rather asleep when the teacher spoke about Maths? Yeah that was me, me and Math or Maths (as British people say) have a love- hate relationship.

ANYWAYS...back to the main point

Gottie is a very interesting character, she is basically a mathematical prodigy (can we trade brains?) who lives in the garden. Both Gottie and Ned are devastated after the demise of Grey, in present state, we see how Grey deeply affected their lives not just his Grandchildren but his son too.

Okay so help me out here, I read the text three times but my final conclusion is that; Ned, Gottie and their dad are German but live in the UK? or Is it Australia? Because I swear I kept going back and fourth, from the scenes that are described I was sure it was England since Ned attends one of them but I truly have no idea. Oh the German words? Well...I may have or not tried speaking those terms in a German accent and epically failed :( maybe I should have just called Gottie and asked her I'm sure she would have told me how to pronounce them.

Ned is a very quirky character who is very hipster like with his odd clothing choices, him and Jason have a band together. Jason is Gottie's ex, and guess what? The idiot left her when Grey died last summer, and ever since things have been awkward between them (well when he comes back from uni anyways). Jason is very annoying, I feel like he just used Gottie and then dumped like there is no tomorrow. What an idiot. How dare he treat girls like that? Gottie should totally knock his teeth out, she totally has my support. Ned on the other hand, although he may seem odd, actually turns out to be very lovable and protective of his sister. Go Jason! #yayteamjason

Thomas, a very English name, is the only breath of air. He can cook, loves his cardy and is total nerd. Are you in love with him yet? He moves away to Canada at a very young age, there is some disturbance in the timeline with Thomas and Gottie's friendship, she sent him an email apparently to which she has no memory of. How is that possible? There is also some weird mystery of Gottie not replying to Thomas's email. What's even more odd is that, Gottie doesn't even have a email address. See the irony? I was beginning to think maybe she has Amnesia.

Moving on in life when a close family member dies is very hard, this book shows the journey of how the tear in fabric of time took Gottie to that moment her world fell apart, along with her grief begins the journey of moving on. Grey maybe gone but he is never forgotten. 


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Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Waiting on Wednesday: Frostblood Saga #1 - Ice and Fire collide

"Waiting on" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.




Title: Frostblood

Author: Elly Blake
Series: Frostblood Saga #1
Release Date: 17th January 2017
Synopsis:



Seventeen-year-old Ruby is a fireblood who must hide her powers of heat and flame from the cruel frostblood ruling class that wants to destroy all that are left of her kind. So when her mother is killed for protecting her and rebel frostbloods demand her help to kill their rampaging king, she agrees. But Ruby's powers are unpredictable, and she's not sure she's willing to let the rebels and an infuriating (yet irresistible) young man called Arcus use her as their weapon. All she wants is revenge, but before they can take action, Ruby is captured and forced to take part in the king's tournaments that pit fireblood prisoners against frostblood champions. Now she has only one chance to destroy the maniacal ruler who has taken everything from her and from the icy young man she has come to love.

Fast-paced and compelling, Frostblood is the first in a page-turning new young adult three-book series about a world where flame and ice are mortal enemies—but together create a power that could change everything.
 





I really love this, heard about this a lot on Twitter

What are you waiting for this week? Let me know in the comments below!


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Tuesday, 16 August 2016

YA Shot Tour With Maria




Hi everyone, 

This particular blog has been in the planning for months, I can't thank the team YA Shot enough for this opportunity and Chelley. I have been reading many YA Authors who live in the US for most of my life and I am even ashamed to admit that I could not even name any UK authors *hides*. But that is all about to change thanks to this tour, today I have the lovely Maria Farrer, please welcome her with open bookworm arms (did I just make up a word? Yes. Does it make any sense? Nope)


An exclusive interview with the lovely Maria...

1. First of all, introduce yourself …


Firstly, a huge thank you to the amazing Aneesa for hosting me on this YA Shot Blog Tour and to everyone who is supporting the wonderful and inspiring event that is YA Shot.


My name is Maria Farrer and I have been writing YA books and books for younger readers for a few years now. My fascination in YA has always been with the complex layers of psychology that play a part in any ‘real-life’ story. What makes us who we are? How are we affected by those around us and how do we affect them? During YA Shot I will be running a workshop on researching and writing sensitive subjects and will be highlighting how important it is to know ourselves and where we stand in relation to the various characters in a story (whether we be writers or readers).


I was catapulted into A Flash of Blue in a moment of gut-wrenching anxiety as I watched an ambulance overtake me on the M1. It was a race against time, I knew. Inside the ambulance was my 16-year-old nephew and his heart had stopped working. Later he suggested I should write the story of what happened to him - but I knew I couldn’t. It would have been too personal. That said, his story inspired and informed A Flash of Blue in many ways. So I’m going to dive in and tell you a bit about a couple of the characters and give some insight into why this was such an important book for me to write. I will try to avoid too many spoilers!


… and tell us a little bit about Amber (for those who haven’t read Maria’s books including me!)


Amber is an amazing girl - more amazing that she’ll ever know or give herself credit for. But things happen in life which knock you sideways, which smash the air out of your body and send you crashing into a place that you never imagined you would find yourself. Grief is one of those things — grief and guilt and fear and loneliness. And when you hit rock-bottom, the hardest part is finding the courage to claw your way back to some kind of normality and begin to live again. Amber is 16 at the start of the book and nearly 18 by the end. During those two years her world is tipped on its head — but it’s not ready to give up on her, nor she on it. She is very human, very fallible, but very strong.

2. What was it like to write a character like Amber?

Emotional! I knew her very well, right from the start, and it was demanding to live through her experiences with her. There were times when I wanted to scream at her, “Noooooo,” or force her to change direction, or just hug her and tell her everything would be OK. But it wouldn't have worked. There was a lot of Amber’s story that needed to happen for her life to move on. There was a lot of healing to be done, both for Amber and for her family and friends. In many ways, what happened to Amber was the catalyst that set that process in motion. It probably wasn’t the story she would have chosen for herself — but there are some choices we’re not given in life.

3. Based on your personal experience, did you find the process of writing this particular story difficult?


Moments of it — yes, definitely — actually more than I had anticipated. But in a work of fiction, it is never your own experience you are writing about,it is the experience of the characters you have created. Everything is passed through a fictional filter. Personal experience can inform a story, but it cannot BE the story. That said, I would be lying if I didn’t admit that there were times when I felt emotionally exposed when writing this particular book. Having lost my own brother in a tragic accident when he was 14, I could relate quite closely to certain characters and events.
On the plus side, the inspiration for this story came from a rash promise I made to my nephew when he was waiting for a his heart transplant. He’s now happy and healthy and I kept my promise - good result!


4.  How would you say writing this book helped you? Was it therapeutic?


No, not therapeutic. Interesting though — particularly all the research into the Youth Justice System and restorative justice. I heard so many real stories, many of them deeply moving and not all of them with the happy ending I would have liked to have given them. Writing this book made me realise how easy it is for anyone - anyone - to get caught in a downward spiral. I have huge respect for young people who manage to turn their lives around, often against all the odds. Sometimes all it takes is a moment of kindness and understanding from someone along the way — someone to give them back some self-respect and self-belief and to show them that things can be different.


5. How would you describe Amber and Tyler in one word?


AMBER: Superstitious
TYLER:  Insecure


6. What is one strong memory that has stuck with your character from childhood?


AMBER: Finding the ‘lucky’ stone with a hole on the beach with my brother.
TYLER: Getting his first guitar. Ever since he started teaching himself to play, it’s been his means of escape.


7. Most embarrassing thing that has ever happened to Amber?


Ran to school one day with running tights under shorts. Unfortunately forgot to take undies so ended up wearing shorts under school uniform all day - not ideal as skirt is short and quite tight. Stupid but felt really self-conscious.😊

8. What is in Amber’s opinion her greatest achievement?



The success of her organ donor campaign - best feeling in the world.


9.  Was there ever a defining point for your characters? (so if fear was living their life, the moment they decided to stop letting that happen)


For Amber it was her restorative justice conference. It was the start of getting her life back on track.


Tyler: Hundreds of them. Liam dying, for sure. But perhaps being badly beaten up made him realise that something had to change. After that there was nothing much left to lose and, in a sense, that gave him the freedom to try to regain control of his life.


10. Where do you see your characters in 10 years?


Quite early on Amber sets her heart on becoming a paediatric intensive care nurse and she’ll pursue that ambition, I’m certain. She’ll be the first to admit that she has a few hangups and that life isn’t all easy. For a start, she’ll always try to avoid living in a ground-floor flat and I think she’ll always hold back on meaningful relationships. Her fear of loss is very powerful.


Tyler turns his life around and never looks back. He and school never really mixed, but post school he gets it together and goes through intermediate and advanced apprenticeship schemes ending up as a lighting technician in a theatre in London. He’ll remain committed to helping kids going through a rough time and will probably volunteer in various mentoring roles. I’m pretty certain he’ll keep running as he’ll need an outlet for his enormous energy. He’ll become a very strong character who is comfortable with himself and others.


Rapid Fire with Tyler and Amber

1. Morning or night person

Tyler: Night
Amber: Morning

2. What did you have for breakfast today?

Tyler: Don’t do breakfast. Coffee though - always coffee.
Amber: Granola with fruit.

3. What foods do you dislike?

Tyler: Yogurt (is that how you spell it?).
Amber: Scrambled Eggs. Blue cheese (YUCK). Cooked carrots.

4. What are your pet peeves?

Tyler:  Casual prejudice
Amber:  People who complain a lot but never do anything about it.

5. Chris Hemsworth or Chris Evans?

Tyler: Chris Hemsworth
Amber: Neither

6. Favourite superhero

Tyler: Quicksilver from  X-Men
Amber: Black Widow from The Avengers


7. Every person needs……… (fill in the blank)

Tyler: caffeine
Amber: To learn to ask for help … oh yes, and cake

8. One item currently obsessed with:

Tyler: New Senheisser headphones
Amber: Hmmmm … possibly the new charity shop down the road — has masses of cool vintage stuff in it.

9. Favourite place to travel

Tyler: Really want to go to LA one day
Amber:  Dorset Coast (happy and sad memories)

10. What are you most afraid of

Tyler: Hospitals - hate ‘em.
Amber: Being home alone.


That's not all folks, GIVEAWAYS is what needs to happen! And we hear you, there is a chance for 2 of you to win SIGNED copies of A Flash of Blue! Don't forget to enter and share this wonderful news! Best of all this giveaway is international, ends on 12th September. 



a Rafflecopter giveaway

Happy reading!



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Monday, 15 August 2016

Made For you- oh no, what a disappointment!




Title: Made For You
Author: Melissa Marr
Published: 16th September 2014
My Rating: 2/5
Recommend: No
Synopsis:


Bestselling author of the Wicked Lovely books Melissa Marr’s first contemporary YA novel is a twisted southern gothic tale of obsession, romance, and murder. A killer is obsessed with Eva Tilling. Can she stop him, or will he claim her?

When Eva Tilling wakes up in the hospital, she’s confused—who in her sleepy little North Carolina town could have hit her with their car? And why? But before she can consider the question, she finds that she’s awoken with a strange new skill: the ability to foresee people’s deaths when they touch her. While she is recovering from the hit-and-run, Nate, an old flame, reappears, and the two must traverse their rocky past as they figure out how to use Eva’s power to keep her friends—and themselves—alive. But while Eva and Nate grow closer, the killer grows increasingly frantic in his attempt to get to Eva.

For the first time, New York Times bestselling author Melissa Marr has applied her extraordinary talent to contemporary realism. Chilling twists, unrequited obsession, and high-stakes romance drive this Gothic, racy thriller—a story of small-town oppression and salvation. Melissa’s fans, and every YA reader, will find its wild ride enthralling.



I received this book in an exchange for an honest review

I really wanted to enjoy this book so much, especially since there was a 'Nate' in here. In all of the other books I have read so far, each Nate has been a delight to read. 

I'm not really sure what to say about this book, I really love crime, thriller books. I love the suspense and mystery that the author creates in the book. Like a guessing game, I want to know if I am correct or wrong. Unfortunately, I couldn't make any of those assumptions in this book since I knew who the killer is a few chapters in the book, this book was very predictable and that spoilt the book for me :(. Eva is hunted down by a killer for unknown reasons, nothing ever happens in little Jessup so where did this come from? So many questions..

The killer from the very first page is a pscyho, he is clearly mentally disturbed. It's hard to not mention his name, not wanting to give it away. But I had a very BIG problem with his logic, there were several times in the book I just wanted to slap him. How could he state his killings as 'God sending him messages'? How messed up is that? Honestly, his character is sooooo annoying. And all of these murders for what cause? Just to get Eva

Eva and Nate were the only likable characters in this book. At one point, even Eva is a little bit irritating but that doesn't last very long as the plot becomes the main focus and everything else just blurs out. There isn't much to tell on Eva or Nate apart from Eva is very popular (thanks to her family's name), very pretty and has a cheating boyfriend. Nate is a mystery, he and Eva used to be BFFs and then everything changed. He started hanging out with the wrong crowd, smoking, drinking and constantly partying. Until Eva's accident, Eva and Nate have chemistry, something that has always existed between them (both of them deny their feelings for one another). One thing I admired about Eva was her bravery throughout the whole book, I'm not sure I could have done what she did in that situation. She finally took action after her friends are killed because of her.


Have you read this book? What did you think of it? Let me know in the comments below

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Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Under A Million Stars - Let it go...



Title: Under A Million Stars
Author: Rita Branches
Published: 8th August 2016
My Rating: 3/5
Recommend: Yes
Synopsis:

Can a beating heart bleed from the shattered pieces? 

Her heart cracked when her best friend walked away; it completely shattered when she lost her family in a tragic accident.

Now orphaned at seventeen, Charlotte Peterson is forced to live with her former best friend, Jacob Parker. Charlie, a talented pianist, desperately wants their loving friendship back, but something is holding Jake back. The more she spirals into the darkness of depression, the more she needs him.

Jacob vowed to stay away from her—no matter how much he still loved her. Armed with secrets that would have destroyed both of their families, he chose to end their friendship and walk away, which nearly killed him. As he watches the girl he once knew begin to fade away, however, he realizes that their relationship is more important than the truth he's hiding. 

Now it's up to Jacob to put the pieces of Charlie's broken heart back together—even if it means revealing the secrets he so desperately wants to protect her from. 
Will Jacob find a way to bring back the carefree, talented girl he once knew, or is it too late for both of them?




I received an arc in an exchange for an honest review, thanks to YA Bound Book Tours

SO much HEARTBREAK! This was a roller coaster ride full of emotions, but mostly pain and heartbreak. Why did Charlotte and Jacob break up? What secret is he holding that broke them apart so viciously?

This was a typical cliche heart break in relationships, a secret dividing two lovers, torn apart by fate. This " big secret" they kept emphasising throughout the whole book, I honestly was expecting it to be some HUGE news that would be so devastating. Okay so maybe in some sense, I could understand how it would be a problem, however, like in any relationship communication is key. A problem can be tackled if they just had open communication, I feel conflicted about this. I really liked the story, I loved the emotions seeping through the pages for both Jacob and Charlie. But then I kind of think this story was a bit prolonged too much. On a side note, both POV's for the characters was a delight to read! :)

I honestly can't say much about character development is shown in the book, it is more of both of them learning to overcome their difficulties (or what they assumed to be their difficulties) and stop fighting their feelings. But that doesn't mean there wasn't any, for Charlie she realises that life goes on. Good and bad are part of life. And for Jacob, he learns that love can overcome any hurdles and honesty and trust are the key foundations in any relationships. 

Although I felt the book was very long, I really did love the writing. I feel like the author got the emotions perfectly in the book, it had the right amount of feels. 



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