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Friday, 20 April 2018

Book Blogger Hop - Organising Book Review

Book Blogger Hop is hosted by Billy from Coffee Addicted Writer. Each week the hop will start on a Friday and end on Thursday. There will be a weekly prompt featuring a book related question. The hop's purpose is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.

This week's Question?

How do you organise your book for reviews? Does it work for you or have had to change it?

(Suggested by Elizabeth from Silvers Reviews)

Since I have only just started blogging again the books I'm due to review are not set with a due date, so for those I don't really organise it in any way, unless it's a series, I TRY to review it one after the other if I read the books consecutively. I am so interested in everyone's answer for this in hope that I may find a better way than my current state of affairs.

However, when I participated in Blog Tours, Author Interviews and received books from Netgalley or Publishers I would use a monthly calendar where I note any commitments I may have set to ensure that I have it posted on time. I would also write down due dates for reading books by. For e.g. if my Netgalley book is due for publication on 1st of May I would endeavour to have it read by the week before so it gives me ample time to write the post, this obviously does not always happen, but again with an extra week buffer I can take my time. 

Next week @ Book Blogger Hop

Have you ever thought of writing a respectful, but angry letter to an author to ask them WHY they killed off one of your favorite characters in a novel?

Thursday, 19 April 2018

Flawed by Cecelia Ahern


by Cecelia Ahern

Website | GoodreadsTwitter

Series: Flawed #1
Released: March 24, 2016
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Harper Collins
Genre: Young Adult Dystopia

Celestine North lives a perfect life. She’s a model daughter and sister, she’s well-liked by her classmates and teachers, and she’s dating the impossibly charming Art Crevan. 

But then Celestine encounters a situation where she makes an instinctive decision. She breaks a rule and now faces life-changing repercussions. She could be imprisoned. She could be branded. She could be found flawed. 

In her breathtaking young adult debut, bestselling author Cecelia Ahern depicts a society where perfection is paramount and flaws lead to punishment. And where one young woman decides to take a stand that could cost her everything.

Flawed is Cecelia Ahern's first venture into Young Adult, and being a huge fan of Ahern's, I HAD to read this and was not at all disappointed, I devoured the book, and rushed out to get Perfect (review coming soon) which is book 2 of this duo-logy.

Flawed is a dystopian novel set in the future, where the world values perfection. This world has a Government body, The Guild, that judges people for their ethical and moral conduct. The system is like a criminal justice system but this is solely for moral judgements.

When found Flawed you are an outcast from society. Firstly, there's the labelling aspect, as a Flawed you must wear a red armband with "F" on it, to let the entire world know you are Flawed, and if that's not harsh enough, you are also permanently branded with a hot stamped iron, different offences are stamped in different parts of the body e.g. if you have found to have lied you are stamped on the tongue. Once a Flawed your job prospects are slim, you must stick to a Flawed diet, curfew and only shop at the "Flawed" aisle of a supermarket, so as a Flawed you are very much segregated from the rest of the community.

Flawed is a fairly fast paced novel, and from the first chapter we are introduced to the Flawed system, and shows its readers that no one is exempt from being found Flawed, regardless of class or associations, you can potentially find yourself being labeled as a Flawed. Within the first 5 chapters we are fully immersed into the novel's plot.

Celestine North is our protagonist, and she was not a likeable character in the beginning. I believe Cecelia wrote her character to be like this firstly to cement that anyone can be found "Flawed", and secondly to show the growth of her character. By the end of the book, I not only liked her, but I found myself really rooting for her cause, she was definitely an unlikely heroine, but through the book she finds her self and where she fits in this strange world.

I also enjoyed the character growth of the secondary characters. I make a special mention of it because for me, this was the part where Cecelia Ahern's writing excelled at in this duo-logy. The changes that took place within each of her characters were amazing, and also realistic. Even the worse character, whom you think are just plain evil, all have a past and you get an insight into why their character developed as it did. I really enjoyed this aspect of the book.

I also found the world extremely intriguing, although I felt that we should have received a better background story as to why the world was the way it was. We are briefly introduced to it, but to me it just did not feel justified, that a few people making mistakes in business decisions could possibly change the world to that extent. I also found it hard to accept, logically, how The Guild's punishment is in essence worse than criminal punishments. People criminally convicted go to gaol and then come out and can live amongst the community and not be "Flawed", whereas the "Flawed" are labelled for life.

However, in saying this I still thoroughly enjoyed the story, the plot, the writing and most especially the characters. This is a fast paced novel, that will have you devouring it's pages. It's plot unfolds fairly quickly, and the writing is well done, and although I wish we got more history about the world, but Cecelia writes in the way that intrigues you enough to keep its readers turning the pages. The characters and their growth is the main highlight for this novel for me.

Wednesday, 18 April 2018

Book Blogger Hop

Book Blogger Hop is hosted by Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. Each week the hop will start on a Friday and end on Thursday. There will be a weekly prompt featuring a book related question. The hop's purpose is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.

This week's Question?

Is there a fictitous town in a book that you would love to live in? What makes it appealing? 

(Suggested by Elizabeth from Silvers Reviews)


What's not there to like? It just looks like such a beautiful town with amazing historical architecture. The shops are amazing and oh so unique, where else can you buy a wand that CHOOSES you? Only at Ollivanders! I would love to have Butterbeer at The Three Broomsticks and try out all the different flavoured beans from Honeydukes and last but not least, to just live in Flourish & Blotts.

What town did you choose for this week's Hop? Please link in the comments below so I can check out your Hop, and if you chose Hogsmeade, let me know if you have the same reasons as me! 

Next week @ Book Blogger Hop

How do you organise your book for reviews? Does it work for you or have you had to change it? 

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature newly hosted by Jana from That Artsy Reader Girl. If you'd like to participate click here for future topics, and list away! If you are participating please leave a link to your post in the comments below so I can also check out your Top Ten!

Top Ten Non-Popular Authors

There are so many Authors that write brilliant books but just don't get so popular that their name becomes a household name, so I thought I'd share some amazing Authors in hope that maybe it'll shine a little bit of a spotlight on their great books. Check them out, you may find your next fave Author by just doing so.

  1. Kristin Bailey - I really enjoyed The Secret Order Trilogy. Here's my review of book 1; The Legacy of Clockwork Key here. Check out her other books here.  
  2. M. Beth Bloom - I really enjoyed "Don't Ever Change" check out my review.
  3. Kris Dinnison - You and Me and Him was great. Here was an interview I did with the Author regarding this book. 
  4. C.J. Duggan - She writes Contemporary YA books. My review of The Boys of Summer which is book 1 to her Summer series. 
  5. Lindsay Emory - Sisterhood is a Deadly. Here's a link to my review and guest post.
  6. Jeff Gunhus - Writes Middle Grade books, but I thoroughly enjoyed his series'. Check out my blog for reviews of a few of his books.
  7. J.A. Huss - I enjoyed reading Manic. 
  8. Cameron Jace - I absolutely loved "I Am Alive." He also does some retelling of fairy tales but "I Am Alive" has really stuck to me, it nearly has the vibe of Divergent.
  9. Stacey Kennedy - I loved The Cat's Meow and actually gave it 5 stars! Check out my review here
  10. Skyla Madi - An Australian Author and most of her books on Goodreads are actually quite high rating. I read the first book in The Guardian series. Here's my review and more info on the consecutive books in the series.
Hope you enjoyed my Top Ten, I just like to showcase less known Authors, as there are some gems to be found, it's just hard to find Authors that are not household names, but some of the Indi Authors I have found have been fantastic, hope you find some of these Authors interesting enough to check out their books! Enjoy, if you have heard of some of the Authors above, let me know in the comments and let me know which of their books you enjoyed. 

Next week @ Top Ten Tuesday

Frequently used words in [Insert Genre/Age Group] Titles

Saturday, 14 April 2018

Stacking the Shelves #22

Stacking The Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews. It's main purpose is to showcase the books you've obtained (borrowed, won/gifted, given for review or purchased) for the week gone by. To participate, link to your own STS post here

This is a Kindle buy,  I don't really buy many ebooks for my Kindle, but Jessica Spotswood posted on social media that this was 99c so I had to get it. It ended up costing $1.99 AUD for me but still a steal, click here if your interested in adding this to your Kindle ebook collection.

I absolutely LOVED this series, but seeing as Cecelia Ahern is one of my favourite Authors, I was beyond thrilled to find out that she has written a YA duo logy. Review coming up soon.

The above books are series' and both book 1's is a re-read, but because I spotted book 2's of both series' I decided to re-read book 1 before starting book 2....does anyone else do this? 

That's the book haul for the week, what books did you get this week? Please link in the comments below. 

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Bout of Books Read-a-thon #16

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, May 9th and runs through Sunday, May 15th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 16 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team

So I'm a bit late to the party but better late than never they say. I love read-a-thons as it pushes me a bit further to read a little bit more and I love the interactions with fellow book lovers in such events. I do live in a different time zone so sometimes the chats are hard to organise but I do try. I'll stop rambling, but this is just to say I'M IN!!! Will update my post with progresses etc tomorrow.


Read 100 pages daily
Participate in at least 2 Challenges
Participate in at least 1 Twitter chat
Visit and comment in at least 20 blogs

Wrap-up Update

I was able to complete all my goals, I even outdone myself by averaging to 178 pages per day which is alot better than my 100 pages per day original goal, I may up it to 200 pages per day next time.

I did visit and comment on 50+ updates but I wish I had done it over more days rather than just the 2 days I did it. One of those days I did the 50 and then another day I did about 10-20 more but I love socialising and encouraging participants through readathons, it's fun to meet new people, especially those that love the same type of books.

Hope to see everyone in the next one and thanks Amanda and Kelly for all the great effort and time you both take to organise. 

Daily Updates

Monday 9th May

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff = 312 pages

Total Books Finished = 0
Total Pages Read = 312 pages

Challenge - Describe yourself #insixwords #boutofbooks 

"First-time Mum, Book, Makeup, Stationer-lover"

Tuesday 10th May

Their Fractured Light by Amie Kaufman = 75 pages

Total Books Finished = 0
Total Pages Read = 387 pages

Challenge - Bookshelf Pic

This is my main bookshelf, it's got two levels not visible in this photo as it's very messy at the moment, I mean look at those shocking haphazard stacked books! 85% of my books are certainly on this shelf excluding my ebook reader. 

Wednesday 11th May

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff = 287 pages

Total Books Finished = 1
Total Pages Read = 674 pages

Challenge - Top 5 Books Written by Australian YA Authors

  1. Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta
  2. Obernewtyn Series by Isobelle Carmody
  3. Between the Lives by Jessica Shirvington
  4. Pretties Series by Scott Westerfeld
  5. Illuminae by Amie Kaufman
*In no particular order

And OMG what a fool I am! I've been reading The Starbound Trilogy AND Illuminae and just realised that Amie Kaufman is based in Melbourne, Australia!!! Well you learn something everyday and this challenge certainly taught me something new :) 

Thursday 12th May

Truthwitch by Susan Dennard = 120 pages

Total Books Finished = 1
Total Pages Read = 794 pages

Today was a terrible read-a-thon day for me as I had Step-Mum duties; had to pick up my Step-Son who lives 1.5 hours (there and back) from home, followed by lunch, had to take Father in Law to Doctors, then everyone to the movies and then the Dentist for Step-Son. 

In between all that I had to make an hour trip (there and back) to pickup a girlfriend from her post-op and drop her off at another girlfriend's home where she'll be recovering for the week. THEN, it was dinnertime and had to drop Step-Son home, take dinner to my two girlfriends (the nurse and the patient). 

By the time I got home it was 9pm, I left the house around 9am so I had been out for nearly a whole 12 hours. I really should've listened to my audiobook as I certainly would have gotten some hours in there from all the driving LOL. By the time I got home I had a raging migraine, so I napped for an hour, then got up and FINALLY got to read!

Friday 13th May

Truthwitch by Susan Dennard = 251 pages

Total Books Finished = 2
Total Pages Read = 1, 045pages

Saturday 14th May

A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray =18 pages
Passenger by Alexandra Bracken = 82 pages

Total Books Finished = 2
Total Pages Read = 1, 145 pages

Actually made it to a Twitter chat, I love the social aspect of readathons! I also visited 50 blogs today, which is always a goal for my #boutofbooks readathon to visit blogs and comment.

I would love to get another 355 pages in before the end but I highly doubt it as I'm very busy tomorrow. 

Sunday 15th May 

Passenger by Alexandra Bracken = 80 pages
Their fractured light by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff = 20 pages

Total books finished this week = 2
Total pages read = 1,245 pages

Was extremely busy today with one of my Step-kids birthday so I had 5 children which included 3 of my step children, their step brother and one friend. So I was very busy all day with All you can eat lunch and roller skating. Was extremely surprised I even got to read as much as I did by the time I got home I was exhausted.

Monday, 29 February 2016

The Selection by Kiera Cass ~ Review

The Selection

by Kiera Cass

Website | GoodreadsTwitter

Series: The Selection #1
Released: April 24, 2012
Format: Audiobook
Publisher: Harper Audio
Narrator: Amy Rubinate
Genre: Young Adult Dystopia

For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape the life laid out for them since birth. To be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in a palace and compete for the heart of gorgeous Prince Maxon.

But for America Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her. Leaving her home to enter a fierce competition for a crown she doesn't want. Living in a palace that is constantly threatened by violent rebel attacks.

Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she starts to question all the plans she's made for herself—and realizes that the life she's always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.

~ Review ~  

The Selection initially caught my attention soon after it's release because of it's beautiful cover, I just love covers with beautiful dresses! However, with so many newly released books constantly flooding the blogosphere I haven't gotten the chance to read this until now. I borrowed the audiobook from my library and I am so glad as I just loved this book! 

America Singer lives in a somewhat dystopian world where the society is based on a caste-system. The lowest being 8s mostly destitute and homeless, and 1s being royalties, the Singers are 5s, they are Musicians, Artists and Performers, and despite not being in the lowest castes they still found great difficulty in making ends meet. So when The Selection was announced, a lottery of 35 women chosen to compete for the Prince's heart, America's Mother was more than ecstatic to finally show to the world how important her America is, however, America doesn't feel the same enthusiasm. After much debate, tears, and fights America decides to enter the lottery, fairly certain that she would never get picked...if she only knew. 

The story is great, and unlike many dystopian novels I enjoyed the fact that Cass provides the readers with an explanation as to how the world came to be the way it is and why there is a "selection" process. Kiera really put a lot of thought into the history and background of her story, this I truly appreciate. 

The characters are fantastic and I truly felt like I was within the pages of its story, watching people I actually know. They were built and created very well that I could see them in person as if they were acting the scenes in front of me, this is how Kiera Cass made me feel with The Selection. 

The writing was well done, Kiera introduces snippets of little information in which you can grasp and later through the book be like "ah...that's when it started happening" or "oh...that's why this happened" and I truly love that because you can see that the writer didn't simply write away, you can tell the writer really constructed the story and did it well. 

I enjoyed this novel so much that I swiftly picked up The Elite straight after and currently reading The One. I cannot wait to continue the entire series, so please stay tuned for the rest of the series reviews. 

Saturday, 27 February 2016

Stacking the Shelves #21

Stacking The Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews. It's main purpose is to showcase the books you've obtained (borrowed, won/gifted, given for review or purchased) for the week gone by. To participate, link to your own STS post here

Book Hauls! 

This is my little book haul from a city St Vincent's de Paul Shop, and whilst these books are simply amazing and I'm yet to see it anywhere else they were oh so expensive compared to the normal prices of shops like these at my area...but oh well, it's going to charity. 

I'm really excited to read The Penguin Book of Etiquette by Marion von Adlerstein as I really loved The Passionate Shopper (pic below), so I'm hoping that this Author does it again for me. Do you have any recommendations on books with a similar theme to these? Please comment below if you do. 

That's all for me for now, see you next time.

Have a Great weekend! 

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Wednesday, 24 February 2016

Burning Midnight by Will McIntosh

Burning Midnight

by Will McIntosh

Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter

Released: February 11, 2016
Publisher: Pan MacMillan
Genre: YA Adventure
Source: Publisher

Buy It Now

How much would you pay for superpowers? Fast-paced action adventure with a world-changing twist...

For fans of The Maze Runner and The 5th Wave, this debut YA novel from Hugo Award-winner Will McIntosh pits four teens against an evil billionaire in the race of a lifetime.

Sully is a sphere dealer at a flea market. It doesn't pay much - Alex Holliday's stores have muscled out most of the independent sellers - but it helps him and his mum make the rent. No one knows where the brilliant-coloured spheres came from. One day they were just there, hidden all over the earth like huge gemstones. Burn a pair and they make you a little better: an inch taller, skilled at maths, better-looking. The rarer the sphere, the greater the improvement - and the more expensive the sphere.

When Sully meets Hunter, a girl with a natural talent for finding spheres, the two start searching together. What they find will change more than just their lives... Because the entire world fights over spheres, but no one knows why they're here or what their powers are... until now.

~ Review ~  

Burning Midnight by Will McIntosh is a fast-paced and exciting journey which will take its readers from the seat of their homes to hunting super-power-giving-spheres, along the way dodging very dangerous people and all the while forging unbreakable bonds.

From the premise of the synopsis I did not think I would enjoy this novel as much as I did. Upon receiving this book I had not heard of this novel nor of its Author so I wasn't sure what to expect, sure the premise sounded interesting but I certainly did not think I would enjoy it as much as I did. From its first few pages, it had me hooked, asking questions and turning pages just to find out the answers to these questions.

The world in which Burning Midnight is set at isn't much different to our world, the main difference being this world has spheres, when two of the same coloured spheres are "burnt" (touching both to either side of your temples) it gives that person some kind of power whether it be forgetting a memory, being better looking, smarter, faster etc. Like all things with a value, humans soon finds a way to exploit it financially.

David Sullivan is a sphere trader at the local markets, trying to help his single-Mother out financially, Hunter Valdez is a sphere hunter, when the two meet paths their adventure begins.

I absolutely enjoyed the fast paced adventure ride that McIntosh takes his readers on. Everything about it was fantastic, the story line was original and inventive, the pacing was fast and adventurous but not rushed, the characters were multi-dimensional and their relationships and friendships were relatable and realistic. Even the Villain you can come to understand, I certainly didn't sympathise with his greed but you understand him as a person.

The story is truly fantastic and it is certainly worth the read. Being a standalone novel, the Author tied the end up nicely which is where I find a lot of adventure books lacking. I would still love to read more about this world and the characters, but alas it was still a satisfying ending and I found myself feeling wowed once I turned the last page. I highly recommend this book to those that enjoy adventure stories and I cannot wait to read other Will McIntosh novels.

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Saturday, 5 December 2015

Stacking the Shelves #20

Stacking The Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews. It's main purpose is to showcase the books you've obtained (borrowed, won/gifted, given for review or purchased) for the week gone by. To participate, link to your own STS post here

How is everyone going? I've been very busy as of late trying to get out the reviews I need to get out as I've been so lucky in receiving some AMAZING books. My Stacking the Shelves post are normally written a few weeks in advance but when I receive a soon to be released book, of course I so want to feature those first, right? 

So here I am, quite jumbled, so if I double up on books, as in mention it on two #STS posts, don't think I'm just rubbing it in, I've simply overlooked that I've already mentioned it. So without further ado, here's what my week looked like in the book world. 

Book Hauls

Carry on by Rainbow Rowell and Soundless by Richelle Mead

Huge Thanks to Pan MacMillan and Penguin Books

Now I've only ever read Rainbow Rowell's Eleanor & Park but did I love that book so...ok I can't spoil it as the review is coming shortly, so you'll have to wait in suspense, or you'd probably have read it already in which case, comment below so we can fangirl/guy over it. So there you go, I still leaked my "opinion" out of the bag, did you get the hint? 

We don't need to get into Richelle Mead and my love for her, right? Just a hint, Soundless definitely does not disappoint. 

I also attended the #BTCYA Event hosted by Harper Teen at Harper Collins Sydney office, here's a recap of the event. All attendees got super awesome swag bags, hence why it is included in my STS post. 

Since it is a crappy photo...I'm yet to learn to take decent ones for my blog. I'll describe the contents:-

Harper Teen "Epic Reads" Tote - and this tote is AHMAZING! It is truly designed for multiple and heavy books, it is strong y'all! 

Ten Thousand Skies About You by Claudia Gray poster

Between The Covers catalogue showing the 2016 YA Releases for Harper Teen

ARC of Demon Road by Derek Landy, Author to the Skulduggery Pleasant Series

ARC of Lady Helen & The Dark Days Club by Alison Goodman

A few book swag, I picked up 2 buttons and a postcard of The Sacred Lies of Minnow Bly.

A very generous swag pack, some of the bags contained Passenger by Alexandra Bracken, had I known this I would have diligently searched for one of those bags LOL.

Thanks so much to Amanda & Tim and the rest of the team at Harper Collins for such an amazing and entertaining night, it was certainly an honour to be part of this wonderful community.

Last but certainly not least, I'm gonna count this as a "book haul", these two darling books from my #OTSPSecretSister.

Gorgeous right? These book necklaces are from Cait at Paper Fury Ink an Aussie Etsy seller. Thank you to my wonderful #OTSPSecretSister you truly spoil me each and every month. 

That's all for me for this week, till next week...

Have a Great weekend! 

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