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Tuesday, 19 June 2012

My Little Break...

Sigh. Here we go again. 

I've been in such a reading slump lately. If you look at the 'Upcoming reviews' below this page, you could see that most of these books have got a low rating. It seems like every book I pick up lately just doesn't do it for me. Please anyone comment below, I NEED reading suggestions. Preferably without politics (I'm looking at you Grave Mercy!) and historical (looking at you again) and one that actually makes sense (hmm you listening, Prom Dates To Die For?). Any book with heavy romance, YA or Adult is SERIOUSLY needed. 

Anyway, I've just been so busy with blogging that I haven't done most of the things that are special to me: reading, spending time with my family, painting,  going to the beach, shopping with friends etc. and I'm starting to feel like this is a job. AND I HATE IT. 

So I just decided yesterday that what I need is a break. I won't be gone for long, and I'll be back posting on the blog July 1st *crosses fingers*. But I just think I need this 12 day break. Just to do the stuff that I want to do without worrying whether I have a post ready for the next day, or wondering why they haven't sent me the post for the blog tour already, or taking pictures of the books we got in the mail with my stupid camera (which drives me mad) and blah blah blah. So on and so on.

I've also got my prom in just over a week and I'm not even prepared or anything. Also, one of my closest friends at school and in blogging, Paulina from Kissed/Bitten By Books was hit by a stupid car yesterday and she's in hospital today having had a surgery last night and missed one of her GCSE(!) Maths exams this morning. I'm planning on visiting her and bringing her lots of stuff and food, and I'm sure she'd appreciate your kind words everyone. Right after that I'm planning on killing the careless bastard who couldn't even see a poor child (she'll kill me for saying she's a child lol but we are still only sixteen) crossing the road. 

Back to this, I already looked at my blog calendar (yes I have one of those - what you looking at?)  for July and it's already pretty much booked. Which I'm excited about. 

Here's some of the things that I promise will be happening next month:

- New blog design: I know, I know I change my blog design almost as much as I change my clothes but I guess I'm just one of those people who can never be satisfied with their own blog design. I'm planning on spending money for a professional one at that. Don't tell my dad.

- More reviews and author interviews! Yes! You see, I've been so hellbent on reading as much as I can to post more reviews and I'm beginning to feel like I'm only reading only to write them. Which is a big NO NO for me. I want to read because I WANT to, not because for the sake of reviews. Which is why I'm going to be spending the rest of this month reading (and not blogging), so by next month I'll have read the books that I want to read, and post the reviews for them. Win win.
Upcoming reviews:
Pushing The Limits by Katie McGarry (4 stars)
Fated by Alyson Noel (currently reading now - it's SO boring)
The Look by Sophia Bennett (3 stars)
Prom Dates To Die For (Anthology) (2 stars)  
Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas (100000 stars - best fantasy I've ever read!) 
And more! 
Also, I've missed my author interviews! I really need to feature them again!

- More memes and blog tours! I promise that I will be participating more on memes and stuff like that so this place can brighten up a bit. Also, I'm having way loads of fun with my meme Discussion Day and you can check out the upcoming topics on the ARCHIVE page at the top.

That's all for now guys. In the meantime I'll still be my annoying self on Twitter and on Goodreads and on Pinterest (I'm OBSESSED!) and if you just want to have a bookish chat, well here's my new email:

Monday, 18 June 2012

Review: Insanity - Lauren Hammond

Author: Lauren Hammond
Genre: Young Adult, Mystery/Thriller
Release Date: May 8th 2012
Publisher: S.B Addison Books
Pages: 190
Source: Bought

Sometimes love...can drive you crazy.

Adelaide Carmichael and Damien Allen couldn't be more opposite.

Adelaide's mother abandoned her when she was ten years old, leaving her to be raised by her abusive and alcoholic father.
Damien on the other hand came from a wealthy family, was a local celebrity, and seemed to have a bright future ahead of him.

Despite their differences, Adelaide and Damien were young, wild, and fiercely in love.
And they had a plan.
They were going to run away.
Be together forever.

And their plan was set in motion, until tragedy struck and for some reason, Adelaide wound up in The Oakhill Institution for the insane.
Adelaide has no idea what she did to wind up at Oakhill, but she knows one thing for sure...
She wants out.

And after Damien follows her there to aid her in escaping, Adelaide slowly begins putting together the pieces of her memory that are missing.
And it doesn't take Adelaide long to figure out that sometimes...
That one true love never dies.
 Well. This book was weird. And strange and crazy and full of WTF. I still don't know what to think about this book, but if you're looking for a really short, unique and prepared-to-have your-mind-messed-with, I think you should give Insanity a try. 

This book was really short, and it alternates between the past and the present.Where half of the book focuses on their relationship (past), and half of it tells Adelaide's story from when she's now in the Asylum and kinda going mental. I AM NOT KIDDING. Another thing that I had a major issue with. The language. God knows why, but I didn't know that the past was supposed to be set in the 1950's or so. YOU CAN NOT TELL THAT FROM THE WRITING. It read like a modern contemporary and maybe that's why some readers didn't enjoy this as much as they would have liked, me included. 

Let's move on the part that just let me down so much. You see, Adelaide and Damien fell in love. No problem with that, but they fell in love in less than a frikkin' page. Literally. Their relationship just moved so fast and so unrealistic. And the next day they started declaring their 'love' for each other. Argh. Makes me sick.

I have to say this is not for younger YA. There's some really graphic love scenes (I only just found out this is classed as New Adult - that's why!) and some disturbing scenes at that.

I will still read the sequel, BUT only just to find out what happened because even though this book had some major negative stuff, the part that really intrigue me was the plot and all that craziness. I will admit, the author is clever, and the twists and turns literally had my mouth hanging open and me thinking THAT DID NOT JUST HAPPEN. 

I gotta say the ending blowed my mind. I did have some theories, and I was both right and wrong on some things. For people who liked and enjoyed The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer - I don't know why, and it's not particularly the storyline, just the crazy aspect. ;)

 Note to readers who've already read it: there's a part that I didn't understand, can someone explain it please? Just comment here/email me by my email at the top or on Goodreads :) Thank you!

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Review: A Midsummer's Nightmare - Kody Keplinger

Author: Kody Keplinger
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Release Date: June 5th 2012
Publisher: Poppy
Pages: 304
Source: Bought

Whitley Johnson's dream summer with her divorcé dad has turned into a nightmare. She's just met his new fiancée and her kids. The fiancée's son? Whitley's one-night stand from graduation night. Just freakin' great.

Worse, she totally doesn't fit in with her dad's perfect new country-club family. So Whitley acts out. She parties. Hard. So hard she doesn't even notice the good things right under her nose: a sweet little future stepsister who is just about the only person she's ever liked, a best friend (even though Whitley swears she doesn't "do" friends), and a smoking-hot guy who isn't her stepbrother...at least, not yet. It will take all three of them to help Whitley get through her anger and begin to put the pieces of her family together.

Filled with authenticity and raw emotion, Whitley is Kody Keplinger's most compelling character to date: a cynical Holden Caulfield-esque girl you will wholly care about.
When I first read the summary last year, all I can think of was: I WANT THIS BOOK. I NEED THIS BOOK.  I mean, come on, it's Kody Keplinger (one of my favourite authors) and a story of a messed-up girl and a boy who's her future step-brother, who she had a freaking ONE NIGHT STAND with? HELL YES PLEASE!! Now, after finishing this book, I just can't stop grinning and typing this review up just makes me want to re-read the book again and again. It totally exceeded all of my expectations.

The characters are truly what made this novel for me. Each and everyone was brilliantly flawed, but loveable at the same time, and you just can't help but root for them. You have to feel bad for our main character Whitley - this poor girl has been through a lot. Her (sometimes) stupid actions and emotions are understandable, yet I admit I wanted to pull my lovely hair out in regard to some of her idiotic actions. From the summary and before starting this book, I thought I wouldn't like Whitley's character, and thought that she'd be one of those protagonists who whine and moan all the freaking time. Thank God she was anything but that. I love Whitley - she's feisty, cynical,  a little messed up, but overall a really great person who just wants a complete family and someone who truly loves her.  

I became invested with all the other characters aswell - Nathan, her future step-brother who she's already seen naked (oh la la) who I just fell in love with. Uh, can you blame me? Nathan is just so sweet and caring and OMG who knew a nerdy guy can be so hot at the same time?? Also, I admire how he's so protective with his younger sister (she was a sweetie!) and I enjoyed his relationship with their dad. I DID NOT LIKE WHITLEY'S PARENTS AT ALL. I thought both of them have been pretty selfish and immature. It makes me sick. Anyway, I thought her step-mum was so sweet! I felt sorry for her at times (because of Whitley thinking she's the evil step-mum hehehe) but in the end, I love how they all came together.

I just can't resist any of Kody's books. I love all of them because they are SO realistic, and I love how she doesn't try to shy away from all the 'bad' topics - sex, drugs, drinking etc. I must say, her books are one of the most authentic and she GETS teenagers. She capture's a true teenager's emotions and how her characters act and feel are SO TRUE.Not only that, her writing's very compelling, and even though this was 300+ pages, I couldn't put it down and read it in one sitting. Even though the plot is obvious and predictable, I thoroughly enjoyed reading A MIDSUMMER'S NIGHTMARE, and you KNOW that it be a happily ever after in the end, but you just can't help wanting to know HOW.

If you haven't read any of Kody's books (The DUFF and Shut Out) yet, then shame on you. You're the one that's missing out. This is by far, the BEST Kody Keplinger book so far, and I've no doubt her book will match the brilliance of this, possibly even more. Now I'll just cry in a corner until her next book comes out.

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Mini Review: Frostbite Graphic Novel - Richelle Mead

Author: Richelle Mead, 
Illustrator: Emma Vieceli
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal, Graphic Novel
Release Date: May 24th 2012
Publisher: Razorbill
Pages: 144
Source: Bought

The drama and romance continue in this 144-page full-color graphic novel adaptation of the second Vampire Academy novel, Frostbite, which was overseen by Richelle Mead and features beautiful art by acclaimed British illustrator Emma Vieceli.

I know that a lot of people don't like graphic novels because they say the characters don't look like the ones in their heads, and that it ruins the whole series for them. I, too was a bit skeptical before I bought the first graphic novel VAMPIRE ACADEMY. Granted, I don't read a lot of graphic novels and I only have one or two, but I think this graphic novel series adaptation is one of the best and one that is fortunately kept close the book and story. 

I don't know about you guys, but the characters all look like exactly how I pictured them while I was reading this amazing series. And OMG Adrian!!! He first appears in Frostbite (remember?) and so when my copy arrived in the mail, I HAD to see Adrian first! I'm so not disappointed lol I don't think he can be any hotter.

This is really short, and the pace moves really fast, which mimics the book, and of course, it's understandable since they have to cram the whole 300+ story into a 140 page graphic novel. When I read this, it brought me back to when I first read the book, and it made me so happy! I just really miss this series, and even though we have the Bloodlines series to look forward to, no one can ever be as great as Rose Hathaway.

So guys, if you haven't bought the first graphic novel yet, PLEASE DO! I highly recommend both of these graphic novels, and if you're a big fan of VA, I doubt you'll be disappointed!! :D

Frostbite: The Graphic Novel (Vampire Academy: The Graphic Novel, #2)Vampire Academy: The Graphic Novel (Vampire Academy: The Graphic Novel, #1) 


Sunday, 10 June 2012

Review: Something Like Normal - Trish Doller (also, Happy Birthday to Travis!)

Author: Trish Doller
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Release Date: June 19th 2012
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Pages: 224
Source: For review

When Travis returns home from a stint in Afghanistan, his parents are splitting up, his brother’s stolen his girlfriend and his car, and he’s haunted by nightmares of his best friend’s death. It’s not until Travis runs into Harper, a girl he’s had a rocky relationship with since middle school, that life actually starts looking up. And as he and Harper see more of each other, he begins to pick his way through the minefield of family problems and post-traumatic stress to the possibility of a life that might resemble normal again. Travis’s dry sense of humor, and incredible sense of honor, make him an irresistible and eminently lovable hero.
So, I wasn't going to post this review until it's release date, but since it's someone's birthday today, well I thought why not, right? Just want to warn you that this is just me rambling on and on about how much I love Trish's debut book, and how much I've fallen in love with Travis. Yes, he's MINE.

Late last year, I came across this cover, and was intrigue by it. I was even more intrigue when I read the book's summary and I learned that it's about a Marine, from a 19 year old guy's perspective. I was hooked. I NEEDED this book right now. So I was ecstatic when I found out I got approved on Netgalley, and I literally dropped everything so I could read this. I read this in one sitting, and I couldn't get enough. I was crying at some parts, laughing at others. Whatever the scene was, it was emotionally powerful, and I didn't want to say goodbye to this book. I was that invested with the characters.  I didn't want to read so fast, because I didn't want it to end, but I just couldn't help it!

Travis is my latest YA crush right now. He was just so real and his emotions were so raw! Oh, not to mention he's so hot!! He is by far the most realistic male protagonist in YA ever (that I've read about).  His voice was just so compelling and addicting. He was a dickhead and an asshole at some parts, and I would be lying if I said I wouldn't punch him at one point just to get some sense into his head. But you know, you gotta give the poor guy a break, he's young, he genuinely wants to improve his life, his nightmares are horrible (I can't even imagine being in his position - I would have gone crazy!!). That's not to say he's a moody shit. He's not. He's hilarious, charming, and can be so sweet. I want a guy like him!

Harper is definitely a girl that I admire. My God she is just so forgiving and friendly and nice. Definitely Travis' perfect match. She was feisty, strong and yes girl she can punch! She also remained positive and sweet, even with all the negative rumors surrounding her in the past. Which is all of Travis' fault lol. There was this scene with the baby turtles, and that was when I knew I love this girl to pieces.

I love the romance aspect of SLN because it's realistic, they started out as childhood enemies to friends and then to lovers. They learn and forgive along the way, their relationship is bumpy, real and slow. Exactly the kind that makes me fan myself. There's this scene near the end, when Travis had a breakdown, and Harper was just there holding him, and never letting him go. IT MADE MY HEART MELT. This is how you write a love story people!! (Though I wouldn't really call this a full on love story - it's more about Travis' figuring out his life after Afghanistan).

I really love how with just 224 pages, Trish managed to make us fall in love and root for our characters - Travis, Harper, Travis' hilarious Marine friends, and somehow makes me hate his parents (the family problems are so realistic!), his idiot brother Ryan, and his ex-girlfriend, Paige. OMG I hated Paige so much! Though I do feel sorry at her at the end (haha not really), if I was Harper I would have had a fight with her for doing the things she did in this book. LOL I'm so violent. She reminds me of one of those hoe-bags at my school (yeah, there's that and some uumpa lumpas aswell) that most boys fancy them and fantasizes about them, and you just can't figure out why. Must be the fake boobs. 

You know, I wouldn't be able to do this book justice on my review and I'm probably not even making sense, but that's because Trish Doller has written such a breathtaking and impressive novel. After I devoured this book, I was like WHAT?? THIS WAS WRITTEN BY A DEBUT AUTHOR? Holy hell. If this is Trish's debut, how amazing would her next stories would be?? I'm in love with Trish's writing! It's very direct, and straight to the point, and hooks you from the very first sentence. I can NOT wait for Trish' next book. Her plot and character developments are astounding and impressive, especially Travis' development. Did I mention I love him??

I never cried so much than I did in the epilogue/last chapter. The most beautiful chapter. I re-read it again and again and so much emotions and so much sincerity. It sums up the whole book perfectly. Definitely my favourite part of the book.

I really hope that boys pick up and read this one, too, and won't be put off by the kissy kissy cover. I LOVE this cover, by the way. Anyway, it's one of those books that stay in your head. It's that powerful, and meaningful! This is by far my favourite and best contemporary I've read in a long, long time.

I'm always interested about Marines and the military, and I think this will be the next hot thing in YA. I sure hope it does great! Is it just me, or are military guys really HOT? Like seriously, I just read Try Me (Diane Alberts), Her Forbidden Hero (Laura Kaye) and NOW this. I think I need to get myself a Marine! Anyone with me? ;)

Also, because June 10th is officially Travis' birthday, well since I'm his biggest fan, I think we should wish him a very 


Saturday, 9 June 2012

Discussion Day (1) - Love Triangles

 :: This is the first day of DISCUSSION DAY. Where every Saturday or Sunday I will have a different book related topic! This week we are talking about: LOVE TRIANGLES. Next week: YOUR BOOKSHELF GENRES. ::


First of all, what makes a good love triangle? I can't wait to hear what you guys think, but for me, a good love triangle is one where you just CAN'T tell who the protagonist/main character will end up in the end. One where you have two equally amazing and worthy guys (or girls - if we're talking about a guy) and you're honestly torn between them. Also, I like to think that from love triangles, the girl isn't really choosing between the two guys, at the end of the day she's choosing which version of herself she wants to be. 
Also, lately I've been hearing and reading more about love triangles that involve two girls fighting for the same guy. WHICH I LOVE. 'Cause let's be honest, there's more chance of two girls pulling each others hairs (yay bitch fight!) over jealousy rather than two guys loving the same girl in real life. But maybe that's just me. 

Anyway, below is a list of the love triangles that I love (pink), and couldn't wait to read more of the series to see who the protagonist ends up with (among other things). And it also say which Team I'm on (just my opinion btw, doesn't mean it's the truth). And below that are the love triangles where I want to rip my hair out just by thinking about it (blue). Whether it's 'cause I was rooting for the poor underdog, or it's insanely obvious who the heroine was going to choose right from the very beginning. 

* Not necessarily in order, but my faves are near the top.*

(Author - Sarah J. Maas) 
Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass, #1)This is the most hardest one for me. Uhhh the charming prince, or the gruff Captain of the Royal Guard?? Who to pick? This is my favourite fantasy book ever and it's not even out yet! I kept going back and forth between these two equally amazing guys! SO HOT! Also, shit is about to hit the fan since the two guys are best friends.  But I'm not sure it will stay like that for long though ;). I love Celaena and I'll be happy with whoever she chooses in the end. But I gotta say I love Chaol a tiny bit more ;)  I'M TEAM: CHAOL
UNEARTHLY - Tucker VS Christian
(Author - Cynthia Hand)
UnearthlyI'm torn with this. I fell in love with Christian in the first book (Unearthly), but I was Team Tucker all the way in the sequel (Hallowed). Which was the other way around for many people (they loved Tucker in Unearthly, but switched to Christian in Hallowed). I know, crazy crazy. This is one of those books that you simply just don't know who she'll pick until the very end. I have a feeling she *might* end up with Christian,but Team Christian people think she'll end up with Tucker. Who knows?  I cried at the end of Hallowed, but I really hope she chooses Tucker.  I'M TEAM: TUCKER

(Author - Cassandra Clare) 
Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices, #1)I really don't know why, but I just prefer the bad boy who's a bit mental (hehe) and tortured inside. I think the teams here are evenly matched, and I think we've come to the conclusion that all the Team Will people think Tessa's going to end up with Jem, while the Team Jem think she's going to end up with Will. That's just the way it is. I wouldn't be so upset if Will doesn't end up with Tessa, just so that he doesn't DIE. Or Jem doesn't die. And I admit I got a bit sad that Cassie confirmed that it's only Tessa that's definitely alive at the end. Am I really evil for not caring about her? Just so Will and Jem's alright :P    I'M TEAM: WILL

(Author - Trisha Wolfe)
Destiny's Fire (Kythan Guardians, #1)This is the one that totally surprised me the most. I must have overlooked the summary of this book, because when I was reading, I was CERTAIN she was going to end up with Jace. And I thought Reece was the bad guy. I was so surprised but also mesmerized because Reece and Dez's relationship was one that took time to develop, and I enjoyed their jealousy fights and banters LOL. Their chemistry is WHOA guys it's insanely hot!! I am like begging for the sequel. I WANT IT NOW.  I'M TEAM: REECE


NIGHTSHADE series - Ren VS Shay
(Author - Andrea Cremer) 
Bloodrose (Nightshade, #3)Argh. I could go on and on about how much I despised the ending of Bloodrose, but that would take the whole day. If you would like to read my review full on rant about this then clicky here Hands down.EVERYONE love Ren. Shame Andrea doesn't. I could still cry and throw my copy of this whole series just by thinking of that horrible horrible ending ever. And here I thought it couldn't get worse. I'M TEAM: REN
COVENANT series - Aiden VS Seth
(Author - Jennifer L. Armentrout)
Half-Blood (Covenant, #1)Don't get me wrong, I love Jennifer L. Armentrout and she IS my favourite author. I do love both of these guys, but hell. Any normal person can guess that Alex will end up with Aiden. . You see, that's the only problem I have with this series. I LOVE IT. But the love triangle is a bit predictable. Though maybe Jenn will do her little magic and surprise us about the ending. I just remembered how PURE was a 'Seth book' in my opinion, while HALF-BLOOD was 'Aiden's' so I can't wait to read DEITY to find out more about what happens with the story and the romance aspect of it.  I'M TEAM: AIDEN

SHATTER ME- Adam VS Warner
(Author - Tahereh Mafi) 
Shatter Me (Shatter Me, #1)This is probably the most stupid one of them all. Seriously? When I was reading this book all I could think of was how disgusting and evil and manipulating Warner was. So I was more than a little shock when I learned that people were siding with Team Warner and then there's Team Adam. I admit, Warner's interesting, but he's got nothing on Adam. Adam's nice AND naughty. (Btw did you see that new cover? I'm in love with the eye. Just about it, though.) I'M TEAM: ADAM

Vampire Academy : Dimitri VS Adrian -  another one that was predictable. Let's face it. Rose belongs with Dimitri. Sydney with Adrian. End of.
Wither :Linden and Gabriel - Sorry to say but Gabriel has a personality of a brick. Jesus, I couldn't stand him in 'Fever'. Linden's ma fave.
Hourglass : Kaleb and Michael - I loved Kaleb. Not so much Michael, but we all knew who the girl (can't even remember her name) chooses from the very beginning, right?
Iron Fey : Puck and ash - Sigh. See above comments. I loved both guys by the way.

So come on guys. Let me know any other love triangles (YA or Adult) that you love or hated. Would love to hear what other people think! Also, let me know if you disagree with me or not, just please don't bite my head off LOL :P It's only my opinion.

Friday, 8 June 2012

Blog Tour: Angel Eyes - Shannon Dittemore (Excerpt)

Clicky here to view full blog tour schedule at YA BOUND

Author: Shannon Dittemore
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal
Release Date: May 29th 2012
Publisher: Thomas Nelson Fiction
Pages: 320
BLOG TOUR - June 8th - Excerpt

Once you’ve seen, you can’t unsee. Everything changes when you’ve looked at the world through . . .


Brielle’s a ballerina who went to the city to chase her dreams and found tragedy instead. She’s come home to shabby little Stratus, Oregon, to live with her grief and her guilt . . . and the incredible, numbing cold she can’t seem to shake.

Jake’s the new guy at school. The boy next door with burning hands and an unbelievable gift that targets him for corruption.

Something more than fate has brought them together. An evil bigger than both of them lurks in the shadows nearby, hiding in plain sight. Two angels stand guard, unsure what’s going to happen. And a beauty brighter than Jake or Brielle has ever seen is calling them to join the battle in a realm where all human choices start.

A realm that only angels and demons—and Brielle—can perceive.


I step out of the entryway and turn right, intending to head back to my car. Movement snags my peripheral vision, and I turn my head. A man exits the real estate office across the street. He lingers on the stairs, watching. He’s tall. Taller than Dad, even. His hair is black, cropped short. Olive skin. Deep, shadowed eyes. His clothes are dark.
Really, everything about him is dark. I think that’s what keeps me looking. Against the white sky and the weather-faded storefronts, he’s a gigantic blotch of darkness.
I’ve taken a single step when his eyes meet mine. I just have time to shiver before I’m roughly, and very suddenly, yanked backward into the recessed doorway of the theatre. My elbow knocks the wall as I’m pressed against it. Jake’s hands grip both my biceps, holding me tight, but his face is turned away. He looks past me.
“Hey!” I wrap my fingers around his wrists and shove, but he’s stronger than I am. “What . . .”
“Shh,” he says, leaning around me. “Hang on.”
I groan in protest, but I obey. He peers down the street, and I hang on. He’s so warm. The heat in his hands bleeds through my jacket, through my sweater and my thermal shirt. It spreads across my chest and slides into my gut. I’m a snowman melting in the sun. I’m butter in a sizzling pan.
The wind sneaks into the entryway and brushes our faces, blowing a hot, almost summery breeze from his skin to mine. It smells like sugared doughnut. The globe lights flicker overhead. Or maybe my eyes are closing.
“Brielle?” Yes, definitely closing. I force them open and find myself staring into Jake’s eyes.
Something I try to avoid. “What was that?” I ask. It’s possible my words are running together. Jake doesn’t answer. But there’s something in his eyes, and I
have no idea how to decode it. It’s not fear. Not anger. It’s . . . fire.
“Jake, who was that?”
“Someone you don’t want to meet in a dark alley.” 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Shannon Dittemore has an overactive imagination and a passion for truth. Her lifelong journey to combine the two is responsible for a stint at Portland Bible College, performances with local theater companies, and a focus on youth and young adult ministry. The daughter of one preacher and the wife of another, she spends her days imagining things unseen and chasing her two children around their home in Northern California. Angel Eyes is her first novel.

Thursday, 7 June 2012

Review: The Golden Lily - Richelle Mead

Author: Richelle Mead
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal
Release Date: June 12th 2012
Publisher: Razorbill
Source: ARC (provided by the publisher)

Sydney Sage is an Alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of humans and vampires. They protect vampire secrets—and human lives.

Sydney would love to go to college, but instead, she's been sent into hiding at a posh boarding school in Palm Springs, California–tasked with protecting Moroi princess Jill Dragomir from assassins who want to throw the Moroi court into civil war. Formerly in disgrace, Sydney is now praised for her loyalty and obedience, and held up as the model of an exemplary Alchemist.

But the closer she grows to Jill, Eddie, and especially Adrian, the more she finds herself questioning her age–old Alchemist beliefs, her idea of family, and the sense of what it means to truly belong. Her world becomes even more complicated when magical experiments show Sydney may hold the key to prevent becoming Strigoi—the fiercest vampires, the ones who don't die. But it's her fear of being just that—special, magical, powerful—that scares her more than anything. Equally daunting is her new romance with Brayden, a cute, brainy guy who seems to be her match in every way. Yet, as perfect as he seems, Sydney finds herself being drawn to someone else—someone forbidden to her.

When a shocking secret threatens to tear the vampire world apart, Sydney's loyalties are suddenly tested more than ever before. She wonders how she's supposed to strike a balance between the principles and dogmas she's been taught, and what her instincts are now telling her.

Should she trust the Alchemists—or her heart?

*Squeals* *Jumps and down* OMG. Guys. I just read The Golden Lily. I still can't believe it. Okay..Deep breathe. Right, anyway. You know the feeling when you get your greedy little hands on something that you wanted for AGES and AGES?? Yepp? No? Well, that was exactly how I felt like when TGL came in the mail. I looked like a won the lottery. Actually, this is BETTER than lottery. Why? Because it's got Adrian inside. Now that I've calmed down a bit, let me just tell you VA/B fans, you won't be disappointed with Mead's second book in the riveting Bloodlines series. Gimme the next book now!!

While the first book Bloodlines was filled with the world-building and getting to know more about our new protagonist Sydney Sage, the whole plot and action didn't take off until The Golden Lily. We now know more about the secrets of the Alchemist, and the mysterious vampire hunters. Is it really all a legend, as they say? It's fast-paced, the stakes are higher, and more secrets are revealed. I have to admit that some parts of the book, particularly the middle, were a little bit slow and tedious. BUT. Richelle's writing certainly makes up for it. It's the kind of writing that you can't help but continue reading, wanting to know what happens next.

While Bloodlines kinda let me down with the lack of romance, I'm pleased to say that The Golden Lily is brimming with pages of hot and romantic tension. The whole group is dealing with their own love lives, and I gotta say Adrian + Sydney = FOREVER. Eeeep!! I love them both together and as individuals. They are like the polar opposites of each other, yet they completely understand and could sympathize with the other. I adored their scenes together.

Now, I wouldn't ever NOT mention Adrian in this review. Adrian Adrian Adrian. *sigh* And here I thought he couldn't get anymore adorable and sexy. I think readers from the previous series will see this playboy in such a new light. He was my favourite character in VA, and I'm so freaking happy that he gradually changed and matured from that series to this. And it's all down to Sydney! Obviously, he's still hurting from Rose's love and betrayal, but by spending more and more time with Sydney, well, I'm not going to spoil anything ;).

Sydney is the perfect protagonist. I know many readers dislike Sydney, but I actually really enjoy her narration. This girl is so funny she doesn't even know it. I swear she had much more hilarious and witty lines than Adrian. She's so clueless about dating and boys that her interactions with them is pure entertainment for everyone. She is just so awkward! Also, this girl is so smart and intellectual that by reading this pretty much proved how stupid I am LOL. Oh, one thing that made me really want to punch Sydney was how obsessed she was with her weight. Geez, eating a burger wouldn't kill you, you know.

What really irked me the most was how I figured out (and some bloggers who have read it already had said the same) what Trey's problem was and the big secret, and how our super smart protagonist Sydney took most of the book to figure it out. COME ON. I personally think that even though all of Mead's books are so breathtaking, they are somewhat predictable at times.

Diving in to this book clearly made me realize just how much I missed the whole gang! Sydney, Adrian(!), Jill, Eddie, Angeline, and Dimitri and Sonya! I love their communications within the group, and how they all look out and care for each other immensely. Angeline, while I wasn't such a huge fan of her in Bloodlines, made me laugh and giggle so much when she was trying to get Eddie's attention. Poor Eddie getting harassed LOL. I found Jill SO annoying and whiny in the last book, but thank god  she sort of grew up and came to her senses. The love triangle between Jill, Eddie and Angeline is one that I'm looking forward to in the third book! Also, it's great to see Dimitri (he appears quite a lot in TGL, not Rose though) from another character's perspective. We all know how Rose sees him, but what does Sydney and the others from the outside see Dimitri? It's great that Richelle incorporated that. 

I honestly don't really know what else to say. Except go buy and read it when it comes out June 12th. I know you will! If you really liked Bloodlines, then prepare to get sucked into the Moroi and Strigoi world once again in The Golden Lily. Also, what was up with that last page? That was just pure torture. The last chapter was beautiful and heart-breaking and sad all at the same time. Heehee you're probably scared now, aren't you? ;)

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

MY NEW EMAIL - a little moan about something :(

Hey guys!!

Lots of things to tell you. First, this whole thing is giving me a friggin' headache. NOT GOOD. I don't really know how to start, but oh well.

My blog email addy (thebookgoddess(at)yahoo(dot)com) was hacked yesterday. Or I *think* it was. It all started when my blog bestie Paulina (Kissed/Bitten by Books) texted me saying 'Did you see the email that you sent out to everyone?' I immediately freaked. I DID NOT SENT ANYTHING. So I bombarded her with questions like WTF What?? How?? Turns out it was just SPAM and it was basically just asking for money. I would have laughed if the whole thing wasn't ridiculous. I may be poor, but I don't go emailing people asking for money LOL. And before you ask, I have changed the password.

Anyway, even though most of you people figured it out, I was still left feeling miserable and embarrassed during the day. (Btw this wasn't the first time it has happened, it happened before  2 months ago, and then it stopped). THIS IS NOT THE WORST THING. 

THE WORST THING is that all of my emails in the SENT box (the ones that I've sent to people/bloggers etc.) has all *magically* disappeared. *Cue mini heart attack here*. I went on it to read the email that I supposedly sent to people. There's like NOTHING. Not one email. Oh Jesus. SO NOW I DON'T HAVE ANYTHING. 

Well. Okay that is still not the worst thing. THE WORST AND MOST HORRIBLE THING IS THAT I'M NOT RECEIVING ANY EMAILS AT ALL. Which if you believe me or not, is a surprise. Paulina sent me an email (it wasn't there), I sent MYSELF an email (from my other account), and it didn't show up there too, I got my DAD to freaking send me an email Wanna guess the outcome? So the last email in my inbox is from 2 DAYS AGO. I don't know about you, but I can't live without my email. 

Not only this annoys me, I'm sure it annoys the heck out of people who have been emailing me. Or will email me in the future. All my (authors, publishers, bloggers etc.) contracts are on that email, and where I get my weekly updates from every book site. So now I have to spend ages trying to change my details to this new email. What's really bad is that if someone emails me on that address, they may think I'm ignoring them. I'M NOT. I just can't see your email. *Facepalm* I'm trying to get my dad to fix it or complain to Yahoo or something, but in the meantime I thought why not create a new email. 

Of course, I don't know if my old one will ever go back to normal (I'm praying it will), but in the meantime here's my new email: thebookgoddess@ymail.com 
It's similar to the old one. Anyway, if you need to email me about anything book related, then please use the new one. I wouldn't be able to see it if you still use the old.  

Thinking about all the things that I've been missing (it has only been a day but still!) is just driving me crazy. All the blog tours, publisher newsletters, the Daemon Invasion yahoo group (now I have to apply to be a member again with the new email), and later I have to DM Jennifer to let her know about my new email addy to put on the Daemon Invasion Street Team list (I'm the leader of team Luxing After Daemon). We might miss out on news and announcements and I WOULD HATE THAT. SO MUCH. I don't want my team to be affected by this stupid thing. 

I'm pretty sure I missed something to say. But. If my old one starts working again, I'll update this post. :) 
Alrighty then. I'm off to watch Snow White and The Huntsman in the cinema to cheer me up from this. So not what a 16 year old girl needs right now. :P

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Review: City of Lost Souls - Cassandra Clare

Author: Cassandra Clare
Genre: Young Adult, Urban Fantasy
Release Date: May 8th 2012
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Source: Bought

The demon Lilith has been destroyed and Jace has been freed from her captivity. But when the Shadowhunters arrive to rescue him, they find only blood and broken glass. Not only is the boy Clary loves missing–but so is the boy she hates, Sebastian, the son of her father Valentine: a son determined to succeed where their father failed, and bring the Shadowhunters to their knees.

No magic the Clave can summon can locate either boy, but Jace cannot stay away—not from Clary. When they meet again Clary discovers the horror Lilith’s dying magic has wrought—Jace is no longer the boy she loved. He and Sebastian are now bound to each other, and Jace has become what he most feared: a true servant of Valentine’s evil. The Clave is determined to destroy Sebastian, but there is no way to harm one boy without destroying the other. Will the Shadowhunters hesitate to kill one of their own?

Only a small band of Clary and Jace’s friends and family believe that Jace can still be saved — and that the fate of the Shadowhunters’ future may hinge on that salvation. They must defy the Clave and strike out on their own. Alec, Magnus, Simon and Isabelle must work together to save Jace: bargaining with the sinister Faerie Queen, contemplating deals with demons, and turning at last to the Iron Sisters, the reclusive and merciless weapons makers for the Shadowhunters, who tell them that no weapon on this earth can sever the bond between Sebastian and Jace. Their only chance of cutting Jace free is to challenge Heaven and Hell — a risk that could claim any, or all, of their lives.

And they must do it without Clary. For Clary has gone into the heart of darkness, to play a dangerous game utterly alone. The price of losing the game is not just her own life, but Jace’s soul. She’s willing to do anything for Jace, but can she even still trust him? Or is he truly lost? What price is too high to pay, even for love?

Darkness threatens to claim the Shadowhunters in the harrowing fifth book of the Mortal Instruments series.

To be fair, I had quite low expectations for COLS. I'm one of those people who have preffered it if Clare has left it at three books, with it ending with City of Ashes. Now, I know you're all going to bite my ass and say 'well you don't have to read the rest of the series, you can just pretend that it ended with CoA.' Now, that wouldn't be as fun. I would still read the rest of the series just to find out what happens in the end, who ends up with who (it's not obvious at all!), who dies etc.

Jace was a bit of a disappointment for me in this book. Actually in CoLS AND in CoFA. The things that made me fall in love with him earlier in the series kinda magically disappeared in the second half. Where's all the sarcastic and witty comments? I know that he had gone through a LOT and all that (please! can someone give the poor boy a break!), but I still think the author should have still added a few more Jace-like moments. I didn't find the evil Jace as hot either. At the end of the book, there was some promise for his character, and I'm anticipating for the next book to find out more about what happens to Jace now.

I really don't know about you guys, but I despise Clary. I DO NOT like that girl one bit. I thought she was too stupid, too naive, too reckless and throughout this whole book I'm thinking WHY THE HELL DOES JACE LOVE YOU THAT MUCH? Coz if it was up to me? I would have no problem pushing you over the cliff, you whiny bitch. Argh. I think she's the main reason why I didn't enjoy this book as much I would like to have had, and if it was a different protagonist leading, then this would be one of my favourite books of all time. I would rather have someone like Isabelle over Clary any day. At least Isabelle's got depth and matured throughout the whole series, which brings me to my next point.

The main characters were the best part of this fat book. I loved that the POV alternates between Jace, Clary, Simon, Isabelle, Magnus and Alec, and even Jordan and Maia. Reading this book made me feel like just having a little chat with my friends, because of the familiarity and how Clare wrote them in such a very three dimensional way. You can't help but be interested, to root for them. My new favourite couple is Alec and Magnus, and I nearly cried at the end. NEARLY. I'm not losing hope things will get better in the next book. Now. Jordan and Maia. I get that they already had a past relationship, but I thought it was a bit of a stretch from the last book (when Maia couldn't stand Jordan's guts) to this where they basically just spent the majority of the time kissing and cuddling and doing naughty things. Probably just me, though.

I admit I did get bored at some scenes of the story, and I personally think some should have been cut out or edited. There was just TOO much. Too much description. Too much explaining. Which led me just scanning most of the descriptions of places and boring stuff. I want the kind of writing that is just straight to the point. Direct. And one that wouldn't let me put the damn book down. I do think Clare's a very good writer, but it's just not for me I guess. The ending kinda redeemed the story for me, but still a bit meh. 

SLIGHT SPOLER: Was I the only one who didn't think about Brother Jeremiah? Not until I finished the book I went to the Mundie Mums forum for CoLS, and when it was mentioned that it could either be Will or Jem (from the Infernal Devices), I literally think my jaw was touching the floor. OMG.

I could go on and on about Sebastian/Jonathan, but we'd be here all day. You just need to know two words from me: disappointment and hatred.

Even though this wasn't Clare's best book in my opinion (I think Clockwork Prince is my favourite and the best IMO), I still enjoyed reading it and am still eagerly waiting for the dramatic finale City of Heavenly Fire. Maybe Jace and Clary could finally do it. ;)

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