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Book Review – Allegiant

cover_allegiant

Title: Allegiant [Divergent 3]

Author: Veronica Roth

Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian, Romance, Action

Length: 526

Rating: 5 Star

Series Reviews: 1, 2, 3

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Description/Synopsis:

The faction-based society that Tris Prior once believed in is shattered—fractured by violence and power struggles and scarred by loss and betrayal. So when offered a chance to explore the world past the limits she’s known, Tris is ready. Perhaps beyond the fence, she and Tobias will find a simple new life together, free from complicated lies, tangled loyalties, and painful memories. 

But Tris’s new reality is even more alarming than the one she left behind. Old discoveries are quickly rendered meaningless. Explosive new truths change the hearts of those she loves. And once again, Tris must battle to comprehend the complexities of human nature—and of herself—while facing impossible choices about courage, allegiance, sacrifice, and love. 

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

Now I am commanding all people who have not read the book yet to leave this post. Good bye! This a spoiler filled post and I will not have the story ruined for you.

Have the people who haven’t read it yet left? If not well you were fully warned.

Out of all the books this is probably the most serious ones. It was kind of disturbing to find out that all their lives were just some experiment the government set up to try and get everyones genes back to the way they should be. Plus the fact that they were all being watched 24/7. Just so creepy. The people who went in their made that choice, but they wiped their memories and then they became new people who didn’t make that choice, let alone all the people who were born there after, no one had a right to treat them that way. It creeped me out so much that I had to put it down quite often.

Because of how I felt about the whole being watched thing I thought it was really wrong at the end of the book that our lovely characters decided to wipe the minds of the government people who were running the experiment. It was a bit hypocritical of them.

While I loved Christina in this book and couldn’t believe there was a time when I didn’t like her, Tobias seriously pissed me off to begin with. This whole “damaged” thing he got labelled with by the government because his genes aren’t right seriously messed with his head and he just walked around being stupid and all why me for agesIt made him do some really stupid stuff which ended completely devastatingly and I hope he feels just crap about it forever.

That being said I am so glad that he and Tris worked their shit out in this book because I wouldn’t want him to feel that bad about the things he did if they hadn’t of.

Because you see, and here is the big big spoiler so I will say it again that anyone who hasn’t read should just leave now, Tris dies. Oh my god I cried when I finally accepted that it actually happened. That last scene between her and Tobias as beautiful, and Tris’ death was beautiful in its own way. Her personality was leading up the point that lead to her death so I saw that coming, but I was so sure she was going to come back for the longest time. The way she saw her mother and she embraced Tris, I was like her mum totally didn’t die after all she is coming back. But she didn’t and the last thing she got to ‘experience’ was a loving and consoling moment with her mother. Tobias and Christina’s reactions were just shattering.

The writing style of the book annoyed me to begin with. We have gone through the first two books just in Tris’ head and I wasn’t sure that I liked seeing things from Tobias’ perspective. There wasn’t enough distinction between their two minds for my liking and I kept forgetting whoes head I was in at the time. I got used to it though and by the end I understood why it was written that way. I thought it was because Tobias was being stupid but it was because Tris wasn’t going to be around for the whole book. At the beginning of every chapter we got told whoes head we were in, and after Tris died and Tobias accepted that it had actually happened, we stopped getting someones name at the beginning of the new chapter because there was only one option left. I thought this was an awesome technique because I didn’t believe that Tris was dead until I stopped seeing names, thats when I accepted it.

So yes, I loved this book even though it wasn’t at all what I was expecting when I started the first one and it wasn’t my favourite out of all of them I still really really enjoyed it. Roth really took me on a journey and kept throwing me punches I hadn’t seen coming. So go read the series! Its worth it and the movie is out now so read the book before you see it. I haven’t seen the movie yet (Soon!) but I think it looked pretty good.

Till Next Time…

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Top Ten Tuesday – Bookish Things

topten

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme created over at Broke and the Bookish where every Tuesday, Top Ten things of anything are listed. Todays Top Ten things are:

Top Ten Bookish Things (That Aren’t Books) That I Would Like To Own

Hooker-Furniture-Center-Bookcase-in-Hardwood-Solids-1029-115431. I want large and stunning hardwood bookcases that match. I love my books, they should have something equally lovely to live upon.

 

 

62afa8aa91a807b34495a39c5ffc96b82. I want my favourite quotes and peoms, mainly from On The Jelicoe Road, up on my wall for all the world to see.

 

 

 
fainting-couch3. I want my book nook to be more than just in my head. In this nook must contain a nice day lounge for me to read upon with a lap close by. (And of course books everywhere)

 

FK40164. Some Funko Pop! Vinyl figures from A Song Of Ice And Fire are on my list. Or really any figures that were in any book (or movie) that I like…

 

 

 
Grand_Piano_Bookcase5. A hollowed out piano turned into a bookcase would be epic.

 

 

 

 
Hunger_Games_Pocket_Watch_Necklace6. A mockingjay pin from the Hunger Games would be cool. Or even the pocket watch.

 

 
il_570xN.552335188_bl2z7. Anything really that says “She is too fond of books and it has turned her brain” – Louisa M. Alcott. On the wall of my reading room would be awesome.

 

 

bookends-autumn8. Some pretty book ends for the times I don’t have enough to fill the shelf to the breaking point. Perhaps ones that say So Many Books, So Little Time.

 

9. Many things relating to Jane Austen. Or Charlotte Bronte.

Wuthering Heights Jewellery box

il_570xn-287909457110. A Keep Calm and Read On poster.

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Manga Review – Vampire Knight (1-5)

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Title: Vampire Knight [Vampire knight Volumes 1-5]

Author: Matsuri Hino

Genre: Supernatural, Manga, Romance, Action

Length: 1000 (Aprox. total)

Rating: 5 Star

Manga Series Reviews: 1-5, 6-10, 11-15, 16-

Anime Series Reviews: 1, 2

Description/Synopsis:

Yuki Cross has no memory of her past prior to the moment she was saved from a vampire attack ten years ago. She was adopted by the headmaster of Cross Academy, and now works alongside Zero to guard the Academy’s secret. Cross Adademy is attended by two groups of students: the Day Class and the Night Class. At twilight, when the students of the Day Class return to their dorm, they cross paths with the Night Class on their way to school. Yuki Cross and Zero Kiryu are the Guardians of the school, protecting the Day Class from the Academy’s dark secret: the Night Class is full of vampires!

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

Welcome to my first manga review! I’m going to be doing these a bit differently to book reviews. Since a manga series is pretty much just one long book most the time, and since they contain very few words most the time, I am going to do reviews in about clumps of five. I decided on this because it takes me about an hour to read one so five seemed like a book type length. Five also gives you a pretty good idea of what kind of series you are committing to.

  1. Our first volume repeats itself alot, and as someone who has read the manga many many times the repetitiveness got a little on my nerves. Though if you are a first time reader I don’t think you will mind so much. You get introduced to a lot of things at once so it probably helps you to keep up with what’s happening and who is who. We get just enough to start feeling things about our main characters. Yuki and Zero both have troubled pasts and Kaname’s doesn’t get mentioned at all so they are all instantly interesting to me. It also explains how the school works and everyone’s generally place and role there.
  2. In our second volume Zero gets developed properly as a character and you can see how he is going to be throughout the series. People from his past also show up. You also start to get that Kaname is jealous of how much time Zero spends with Yuki. You can smell the love triangle forming. The vampire world also gets  explained quite a bit which lets you know just how important Kaname is to all the other vampires.
  3. Very little plot development happens in volume three which didnt bother me at all because it focuses on Kaname’s, Yuki’s, and Zeros pasts and its all just so good in the sense that its interesting. None of their pasts are all that happy. You get a very good understanding of why they all have the relationships that they have with each other.
  4. Though Yuki is the main protagonist in the story, Zero has firmly placed himself in the limelight and has main focus in volume four. Are we having to deal with Zero’s story first to get get somewhere with Yuki? When the story isn’t all about Zero you get a glimpse at what Kaname wants from all the events that are happening. Zero gets a very large shock that has him in despair.
  5. In volume five we finally get some (kind of) satisfactory Kaname’s story and role in the plot and some more of Zero’s story. Though I know Yuki is the main character, there is still no indication as to how she fits into the way the plot seems to be going. We start to see signs of a downfall in Kaname’s character…

Since I have already mentioned that I have read this series before its safe to say that I really enjoy it. I think that that’s a bit of an understatement. Its one of my favourite things ever. Has been every since I discovered a clip of an episode of the anime (which I will review at a later date) on youtube by random. I have followed it pretty religiously ever since.

Though it may not sound like it from my brief over views of each volume here, it is filled with action and the series get bloodier the further on you read. For example, Yuki’s first memory is blood and the colour red. If you like lots of blood, vampires with special powers that could be endless depending on which one you look at, and awesome looking weapons, I promise you will not be disappointed.Yes, you get a very big dose of love triangle which would normally annoy me but I love it because I can’t decide who Yuki should end up with. She has a very protective love for Zero since her relationship with him started with Zero coming to live with her and the Chairmen after a Vampire attack that killed his family and left him traumatised, and a worship kind of love for Kaname since her relationship with him started at the very beginning of Yuki’s memory when he saved her from a vampire that was about to kill her.

It actually kind of kills me a little bit that I can’t decided who I love more out of Zero and Kaname. They are just both so stunning and hunky. Omg. Zero clearly cares for Yuki but he is so torn up with who he is that he often acts meanly to her but you know he would always be there for her if he really felt she needed him. Kaname on the other hand does the outwardly affections and grand gestures, but he hurts Yuki by manipulating her and often lying to her. Who do I love more? I just don’t know!!!! -cries-

All the characters are awesome in their own way. Even the ones that are side characters like Yuki’s adoptive father the Chairmen. He is a pretty fun character. But you feel for all of them, and at this time in story you really feel the most for poor Zero. And Little bit for Kaname… Not to mention the artwork is stunning!

So I highly recommend this series. I am sorry that my review seems a bit bare in content for this one… Its just that lots of rather spoilery stuff happens quite soon on and I don’t want to ruin it all for you guys. Also, there is a lot of introductory stuff that happens. I will mention more of what happened in the next section of the reviews since people should be up to date then.

Till Next Time…

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Feral Friday – Company Closure

Feral Friday

Hello everyone of blogland, welcome to Feral Friday, which was started over at Book Nerds Reviews. It is a place to discuss things that make us feral with emotion! This weeks topic is:

Publishing Company Closure

Now I wasn’t going to do a feral Friday today because its late and I didn’t really have a topic I wanted to rant about but after I got home from work I was reading around and found something that just really wanted to make me cry. Literally. I haven’t done it yet but there will be a time when the tears come.

You see, one of my favourite manga series of all time, Vampire Knight (I’m posting reviews of it later this week), is one volume (maybe two I don’t know) from completion, its been stated and you can feel the story wrapping up. However, despite how sad that is thats not the part that upsets me. The part that upsets me is the fact that the publishing company that is responsible for releasing the covers like that I have/like and match the rest of my volumes has closed down. They closed down ONE BLOODY VOLUME AWAY FROM COMPLETION!!!!! Oh the tears. They are there. On the inside I am just dying.

My 18 other volumes look like this:

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Aren’t they pretty? They are red and have things like bats on the spine and each volume has its own dust jacket. Thanks to the closer of Chuang Yi my final volume of VK is probably going to look the last book on the right. Just black and boring. No dust jacket, no little bats on the spine. Nope. Just plain black. Or it could look completely different! I don’t know which one I would prefer, the black that only matches the copy of the novella, or another red and white one that stands out from both of them. Either way I am going to cry my eyes out. WHY! Just one more volume, you just had to wait for one more volume…

My only options left are either continuously cry over this final f-up. Or I can go out and buy the entire collection again so that I have one where they all match. They are normally around $15 a volume… I don’t want to do either.

This whole closer thing has stuffed me on other mangas too but luckily the other ones I don’t own as many so if I feel the need to go out and and re-buy them all it wont completely send me bankrupt. But with VK I care the most. Its my favourite :(

This post kind of links up to the one I did on cover changes so if you want to read that as well you can check it out here.

Anyway… Thats all from me for today. I’m going to go stare at my shelf and feel sorry for myself now.

Till Next Time…

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From Book to Movie – Vampire Academy

VAMPIREACADEMY_M

Title: Vampire Academy

Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal (Vampires), Comedy

Rating: 3.5 Star

Book Series Reviews: 123456

Description/Synopsis:

Rose Hathaway is a Dhampir, half human/vampire, guardians of the Moroi, peaceful, mortal vampires living discretely within our world. Her legacy is to protect the Moroi from bloodthirsty, immortal Vampires, the Strigoi. This is her story.

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

Hmmm. I have waited a long time to see this movie, I’m pretty sure I went to the last screening at my cinemas. I am not quite sure it was worth the wait.

I would normally round a review up or down if I rate them point something but I can’t do that here. I’m really torn up about this review actually. I would let it sit with me more so that I feel better about the whole thing but I really don’t think that would help here so I am just going to go ahead with it.

The reason I am torn up about this review is because my mind has the section in my brain where I base my review on the movie based on the book(s), and then in the other part of my brain tries (very hard) to like the movie just for the movie. I tell you guys, reviewing things has made me much more judgemental of things haha. When I go to the movies now or even just watch an old one I can’t really just sit back and watch it. In my mind I am ticking things off and noting things to comment on later. My book related brain is telling me that it was far below where I wanted it to be. The other part of my brain thought it was enjoyable enough, wouldn’t pay to see it again but if I got it on DVD or something I would pick it up and stick it in the player.

Really its just difficult because it was so different to the books in a lot of ways and they did that on purpose.

I think its very clear that the movies were trying to go for a more funny Mean Girls kind of vibe compared to the books which are rather serious. I think this was a good way to market it to the public since people tend to just want to avoid vampire movies these days. It also gave a chance to let Rose loose with her funny and witty personality. However, I think the movie fell a bit flat because they were trying just too hard to make it funny. That scene in the beginning where Rose (Zoey Deutch) and Lissa (Lucy Fry) are talking about plastic surgery and Rose makes that face… So pointless. Why oh why would they put that in there. Also, one of the lines in the movie and the trailer is “We all think we will live forever” which there was no point in having in there because Rose says that Moroi and Dhampir don’t live forever, so why would they say something like that? Pointless. So pointless.

Because the first book is one of the weaker ones due to the fact it is setting up the story here, the movie had a lot of info to cram in. They didn’t do it well. A lot of the conversations felt forced and rushed, and just generally the whole plot of it did too. We don’t get any explanation as to why Rose is training by herself with Dimitri, we don’t really get any before or after when Rose breaks into Kirova’s office, and we cram in everyone finding out they Lissa and Rose have a bond (something they didn’t find out till the end if not the second book) and have big scenes about it yet for some reason still don’t know that Rose is shadow kissed. That whole scene and series of events just seemed really poorly thought out. I assume they did it this way because its very unlikely they would have gotten to make each book into a movie so smooshed a couple bit from each into it. Though it did kind of slow down and get better paced at the end, things like that just didn’t work and you could have cut them out. Just like the plastic surgery scene, and just like the Queen Tatiana scenes. The first one was fine I spose but not needed, but the second one was just stupid and I didn’t connect with anything Lissa said. Not to mention that she would never have treated the Queen that way. We also skipped over just how hurt Rose was about the blood whore stuff. I do understand why they put in that extra scene at the start with the Strigoi though, they didn’t come into the story until much later and you couldn’t leave out a whole race of vampires from the movie.

I think Zoey Deutch did an amazing job. She wasn’t quite the Rose I had pictured in my head but she was great. She has some awesome lines which Rose would totally have said. Though I felt at times she was a bit lapsed in her duty which was all she was about. I also thought Dimitri was great, even if I thought he was a bit fat to be a ‘god.’ I loved the scenes with him and Rose the most I think. I love the fact they kept the scene with Rose trying to sneak attack him in, and I love the fact it became a running gag. My heart fluttered and went wild when he said Rosa, my Rosa when he saved her from Natalie and she was hurt. That’s it Dimitri, scoop her up in your arms and never let go! I do wish that when he walked in on Rose and Jesse that he had thrown him around more. When Rose and Dimitri wake up from the lust charm and Rose freaks out and doesn’t know where or how to cover herself up, just so funny.

Lissa though, she was a big sack of sad. I thought she looked ok if not a bit odd, but the actress just didnt do it for me. Not to mention that her entire character was pretty much destroyed. I didn’t like Lissa at all in the movie if I compare her and everything I know from the book. How dare she ever call Rose a blood whore and ask if Rose killed her cat. (On a side note I thought it was super wrong for them to introduce a cat into the story just to kill it and make Natalie look worse). That scene at the end also was a huge character flaw for Lissa. Lissa would never compel someone to jump out a window and kill themselves. She would compel them to leave the room if anything! I did like her relationship with Christian though, I thought his character was well done. I even liked the fact that he didn’t get torn apart by the hounds but got shot and got to burn them. That whole not being able to perform thing was funny and actually worked.

Natalie was done really well. I don’t remember much about her form the books but I loved her in the movie. She was so cute and despite the fact she turned out a bit messed up and evil I still felt bad for her. That scene where she was talking about not being able to undress in front of anyone and had to turn a pot plant around once so she could change was funny and awesome despite it being pointless. I also loved when she was licking the wall, though that whole scene was stupid. Why would they bring something like that into it, it wasn’t needed they and could have spent that time working on things that were in the book. The character was great though. I loved the way Sonya Karp was done, you really needed more of her in the movie than you did the book. I felt so bad for her, it was great. I for the life of me cannot understand why they put her at the end with all the other Strigoi. In the book she goes off and builds herself a place all by herself and doesn’t give a damn about the rest of them. All the rest of the characters I thought were pretty good.

By the looks of the end they are either going to skip book two and just go onto book three, because the cave stuff doesn’t happen till then and that is where the movie ends, or they will moosh them both together. If they get to make another movie that is. It didn’t do that well. I know a lot of VA fans praised it because they want a second movie, and I do too, I think it would either make it or break it in terms of how good the movie series would be, but if its going to suck I don’t want another one. This movie was different enough from the books that it has left them unblemished to me, and more movies gives them more of chances to make me start being sad that everyone bashes the books cause of the movies. I spose we will see wont we?

Till Next Time…

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Absence

So sorry for my absence of late guys! I got sick, then I got really busy with getting work and everything and I ran out of reviews already typed up on my computer and haven’t had the time to really do more. I can’t read when I’m sick or working D:

I’m hoping to start putting up reviews every three days again like before (I’m unsure at this point how much time I’m going to be able to give to reading) and then if I build up a stack of reviews waiting to be posted again I shall do another month of posting every single day. As well as my reviews, I shall also do Top Ten Tuesday every week and Feral Friday when I find a topic I wish to discuss.

My next review will be up tomorrow! See you guys then.

Till Next Time…

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Top Ten Tuesday – Unique Books

topten

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme created over at Broke and the Bookish where every Tuesday, Top Ten things of anything are listed. Todays Top Ten things are:

Top Ten Unique Books I Have Read

shippingnews1. The first book that comes to mind would have to be The Shipping News by Annie Proulx. The way this book was written was really different to most books I have read. It took me a bit to get into it but once I did I loved the style.

 

 

71aIaqzVp9L._SL1246_2. The next one I think I’m going to put up is A House Without Mirrors by Marten Sanden. Though the idea of entering another world through cupboards was done in The Lion The Witch and the Wardrobe, in this story we go into a wardrobe filled with mirrors and end up in another world that is a mirror image to the one you came from, but inside you discover things about yourself and those around you. So interesting for a childrens book.

cover_allegiant3. Im giving this place to Allegiant by Veronica Roth. Those who haven’t read it yet move on to the next one! Spoiler alter! For having the courage and the balls to kill off the main character.

 

 

Poision Princess4. Poison Princess by Kresley Cole. The idea of teenages embodying the major arcana cards, having their own special powers because of it, and having to fight each other until only one is left standing is an awesome idea and very unique!

 

 

cvr9781591169154_9781591169154_hr5. Ouran High School Host Club by Bisco Hatori. I don’t know if this is just a cultural difference or something, but I personally find the plot of this series unique. What kind of girl goes into a school then just pretends to be a guy and joins a club of guys which have dates with girls at school, for which the girls pay? Further more, what kind of school lets that kind of thing happen?

 

northernlights6. I kind of feel like I am breaking the rules by putting this book/series in since I haven’t read it yet, but I have seen the movie and know the general gist of it I am going to put it in anyway. This place goes to The Northern Lights by Philip Pullan. I think peoples souls being outside their body and living in the form of an animal is a really interesting idea and concept. I really need to hurry up and pick up the books.

 

ha626017. Vampire Knight by Matsuri Hino. Though vampires are not something new I thought the idea of having different levels of vampires was a very interesting idea. The higher up you go, the more powerful and magical the vampires are.

 

 

9780316068048_custom-s6-c108. The Host by Stephanie Meyer. I don’t know if its just me or not since I don’t really read science fiction all that much, but I thought the idea of an alien concious and a human concious living in the same body was very interesting and unique.

 

 

newesfromthedead9. Newes From The Dead by Mary Hooper. I thought reading the before and after chop up and put together of a story about a girl who survived being hanged was really interesting.

 

 

978174253520310. Though it may not be for everyone, but for me, The Fault In Our Stars by John Green was unique. I hadn’t read a story where virtually every character was sick and going to die.

 

 

So there is my list. As always if you would like a copy of the book just click on the cover and it shall take you to a copy of the book.

Till Next Time…

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Book Haul – March

I bought LOTS of books this month. Having them all displayed in front of me makes me a little ashamed of how much money I spent on books. I think I need to take a break from buying books for awhile…

This first batch is all due to a up to 60% off 50 books over 25 hours sale on The Book Depository. Some I bought cause they were childhood memories, others because I thought they would be funny/enjoyable, and others cause I thought the cover was pretty.

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the-story-of-the-treasure-seekers-finalWhen their father’s business fails, the six Bastable children decide to restore the family fortunes. But although they think of many ingenious ways to do so, their well-meant efforts are either more fun than profitable, or lead to trouble — until one adventure has quite unexpected results.

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x2_9b15bf6Ren e Winters has changed. When she looks in the mirror, a beautiful girl with an older, sadder face stares back. Her condition has doctors mystified, but Ren e can never reveal the truth: she died last May, and was brought back to life by the kiss of her Undead soul mate, Dante Berlin.

Now, her separation from Dante becomes almost unbearable. His second life is close to an end, and each passing day means one less that she will spend with the boy who shares her soul.

Just when Ren e has almost given up hope, she learns of the Nine Sisters-brilliant scholars who, according to legend, found a way to cheat death. She can’t shake the feeling that they are somehow connected to her dreams, strange visions that hint at a discovery so powerful, and so dangerous, that some will stop at nothing to protect it.

Ren e thought she knew the truth about life and death. But there is a secret woven through history that holds the only hope for Dante and Ren e. Unless they find answers soon, their time together is doomed to be cut short.

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71aIaqzVp9L._SL1246_Thomasine has spent months living in her great-great-aunt’s dusty, dark house with her father, and her aunt, uncle and cousins. While her father’s siblings bicker about how much the house must be worth, her distant, elderly aunt is upstairs, dying, and her father has disappeared inside himself, still mourning the death of Thomasine’s little brother.

But one day, her youngest cousin makes a discovery: a wardrobe, filled with all the mirrors missing from the big house. And through the mirrors, a different world – one in which you can find not what you most wish for, but perhaps what you most need …

A beautiful tale of love, grief and growing up, “A House Without Mirrors” is an unforgettable adventure into families and the power of love.

♦♦♦

PippaLongstocking1This beautiful edition of the children’s classic Pippi Longstocking is illustrated throughout with wonderful collage pictures from the award-winning Lauren Child. The contemporary design, imaginative layout of the text, and stunning illustrations from Lauren Child all add up to a perfect gift purchase. When the book published in hardback, it gathered many wonderful reviews, including this one from Books for Keeps: ‘Lauren Child is the perfect choice to illustrate this handsome, large format edition of Pippi …her unmistakeable illustrative style helps to bring a modern feel to the book.’ Pippi lives in Villa Villekulla with a horse, a monkey, and a big suitcase full of gold coins. The grown-ups in her village try to make Pippi behave in ways that they think a little girl should, but Pippi has other ideas. She would much rather spend her days arranging wild, exciting adventures to enjoy with her neighbours, Tommy and Annika, or entertaining everyone she meets with her outrageous stories. Pippi thinks nothing of wrestling a circus strongman, dancing a polka with burglars, or tugging a bull’s tail and her wildly unconventional lifestyle is matched by Lauren’s free-spirited illustrations.

♦♦♦

off-the-leash-the-secret-life-of-dogs-978144725084501Launched just over a year ago on Facebook, ‘Off The Leash’ has developed a regular daily following of over 150,000 dog lovers from around the world. Now the best of Rupert Fawcett’s brilliantly observed, touchingly true cartoons come together in book form for the first time. Featuring the secret thoughts and conversations of dogs of every size, shape and breed, this gorgeous book is a celebration of our favourite belly-scratching, tail-chasing, bed-stealing canine friends.

♦♦♦

9781843913917‘”I am the Guardian of the Gates of the Emerald City. May I inquire who you are, and what is your business?” “My name is Jack Pumpkinhead,” returned the other, smilingly; “but as to my business, I haven’t the least idea in the world what it is.” The Guardian of the Gates looked surprised, and shook his head as if dissatisfied with the reply.’ The sequel to The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and set shortly after the events in the first book, The Marvellous Land of Oz follows the adventures of a young boy named Tip, who, for as long as he can remember, has been under the guardianship of a witch named Mombi in the Land of Oz. One night he plans his escape to the Emerald City, stealing Mombi’s powder of life. Along the way he meets with our old friends the Scarecrow and Tin Woodman as well as making some new ones such as Jack Pumpkinhead, the Wooden Sawhorse, the Highly Magnified Woggle-Bug, and the amazing Gump. Can they escape Mombi and make it to the Emerald City? A fantastical tale of endless imagination, The Marvellous Land of Oz is as exciting and endearing today as it was when first published over eighty years ago.

♦♦♦

The following books I picked up for $5 each from my local book graveyard. I must save all I can!

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malerion 5A sequel to THE BELGARIAD, Garion has slain the evil God Torak, and fulfilled the prophecy. But suddenly another prophecy is foretold. Again a great evil is brewing in the East. And again Garion finds himself caught between two ancient Prophecies, with the fate of the world resting on him….

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malerion 1In this second book of The Malloreon, Garion and Ce’nedra continue the quest begun in Guardians of the West. In their party travel the immortal Belgarath the Sorcerer, his daughter Polgara the Sorceress, and the little Drasnian, Silk.

Garion knows that it is the mysterious figure Zandramas who is responsible for the abduction of his infant son, and he and his companions journey many miles and encounter many strange beings in their search for him.

Their way leads through the foul swamps of Nyissa, ruled over by the Snake-Queen, and on into the dark kingdom of the Murgos, where human sacrifices are still made to the dead god Torak. Further on, however, even beyond those forbidding lands, they must face the ultimate danger – not only to themselves but to all mankind…

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malerion 2In an adventurous sequel to THE MALLOREAN, David Eddings tells the story of King Garion’s abducted infant son and his efforts to save him. Unfortunately, he and his friends are detained by the friendly, but determined Zakath, who refuses to let them leave. As a horde of demons ravage the Cities and a plague lets loose its terrors, Garion has little time left to reach his destination, or the kidnapper wins by default.

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malerion 3As the bestselling THE Mallorean series contnues, Garion is pursuing Zandramas, in the form of a great dragon flying over them, across the known world. With the forces of evil threatening on both sides, Garion still had to get to the Place Which Is No More, as the Seeress of Kell had warned, but they had no idea where that might be….

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malerion 4Now in the final stages of their quest for his son, Garion and his companions travel to Kell to consult the only undamaged copy of the Malloreon Gospels. For centuries the Seers have guarded this book from the Grolims and even had their wizards put a curse of blindness on any Grolim who tried to enter Kell.

So, as proclaimed in Guardians of the West, Belgarion the Godslayer sets out with those who must join him: the Eternal Man, the Guide, the Man with Two Lives, the Bearer of the Orb and the Silent Man, and the rest of his companions to The Place Which Is No More to make the final choice – darkness or light.

But Zandramas the Sorceress will not be outdone. Though she may not enter Kell she still has young Geran and should she reach the final meeting place with him, then Garion must slay his son or the world will be no more.

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goodwivesAmy looked relieved, but naughty Jo took her at her word, for during the first call she sat with every limb gracefully composed, every fold correctly draped, calm as a summer sea, cool as a snowbank, and as silent as the sphinx. In vain Mrs. Chester alluded to her ‘charming novel’, and the Misses Chester introduced parties, picnics, the opera, and the fashions. Each and all were answered by a smile, a bow, and a demure “Yes” or “No” with the chill on.

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And there we have it. I bought all these books by the 7th so I put myself on a book buying ban because of it so next months haul may be a bit small. If you are interested in any of these books just click on the picture and it will take you to the same copy I bought via my affiliate link!

Till Next Time…

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Book Review – The Forgotten War

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Title: The Forgotten War

Author: Howard Sargent

Genre: Epic, Fantasy

Length: 1074

Rating: 4 Star

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Description/Synopsis:

For ten years the people of eastern Tanaren have known nothing but war, a war to which there seems to be no end in sight. Now, however, things may be about to change. Pitched into the heart of the conflict are four people: Morgan, a veteran warrior charged with an important mission; Cheris, a gifted but wayward sorceress called from her exile on a remote island; Ceriana Hartfield, a noblewoman whose marriage is pre-empted by a chance discovery on a beach; and Cygan, a man from the desolate marshes seeking aid against a merciless foe. Between them, could they hold the key to ending this deadly conflict? But at what cost? This extraordinary epic is a gripping, searing tale of the ugliness of war and the dangers of power.

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

I had the pleasure of receiving this book ahead of the publication date from the publishing company in exchange for a honest review.

I don’t know what I expected going into this book. Because of the size I was actually really quite scared of it. If the book was not to my liking, it was going to be torturous to get through it. I was however very surprised at how much I loved it!

I have mentioned before in a feral friday article of mine how I feel about epic length books. I more often than not feel like im trapped within the pages, that no matter how much I read that I will always be reading this book till the end of time because I don’t like to just give up on a read. In the beginning of this book I actively didn’t look at how long my kindle thought it was going to take me to read it (I think it was 40+ hours) but I didn’t need to avoid the time for long. Within a couple of pages I was swept up in the story and really invested in everything that was happening. I didn’t notice I was still reading the book until weeks later and I had about 10 hours left in the book and by then it hardly mattered! The end was just days away, and you could feel it in the story as well.

The plot of the story follows a couple of main characters which you are introduced to over time, and then the further you get into the story they break off and form their own stream the story which often lead to getting introduced and reading from the perspective of yet another protagonist, and then you also get perspectives of the antagonists thrown in there as well. It was very Game of Thrones like in the way you have a heap of people to keep up with, and not all of them had easy names to remember or even pronounce (I serious issues wondering how to pronounce some, the names ended up silent words for me cause I couldn’t for the life of me do the names correctly), but all that being said I found it a lot easier to keep up with them all because of the very gradual way they were introduces. You associated certain people to certain main characters and that main character to a certain section/location/plot point in the story. It made it easier to keep track of where I was in this really seemingly giant world.

As I was reading the entire time I was trying to piece together were all of these characters are, predict how some of their stories would cross over, and how each of their stories would effect the other! They are all connected and it was really fun working it all out in my head.

It made me laugh multiple times, and at others I just couldnt even fathom what was happening because I didn’t want to believe that it was happening. I was never brought close to tears though.It throws you a number of curve balls you didn’t see coming, and gives you things you were just begging for. It was also pretty graphic in some areas, specially battle. Letting you know in detail how someone died or suffered.

I loved pretty much all of the protagonists we were introduced to and felt a good hatred for all the antagonists. And being a women, I really enjoyed the fact that lots of the female characters we were introduced to totally rocked! Considering the era they were in and how women are treated and supposed to act, they all totally kicked butt and I wouldnt have want to make any of them angry because then I would feel their wrath.

Ceriana was probably my favourite to read about, though im not going to say why. At times while reading her story I had great urges to stop reading and go and pain the scene which was put into my head, but that would mean I would have to wait to find out what happened next, so I suppressed them for a later date (can you guess what I will be doing when I am done writing this review?). Next on equal footing would probably have to be Cheris, Morgan, and Syalin. Syalin probably would have gotten higher is there was just more of her in the book. She doesnt pop up until you are already a good way through. Cheris is just awesome cause she was born with awesome mage powers and her story is just in generally really interesting, though she did tend to whine a bit. Morgan was great too, you can just feel his honest and a mans got to do what a mans got to do kind of attitude. Very likeable and friendly. Oh and Itheya, basically princess of the elves. I wish her story had ended differently!

There was a downfall for me however in the overall story structure that I feel like I have to mention. Though once the character was mentioned I could instantly tell where I was and relate everything to that character, to me there wasn’t really a clear ‘voice’ I head in my head for each of them and they all just kind of blended together. This normally wouldnt be an issue because there would be a clear indication when we have switched characters, but my copy there was no such thing. Sometimes there wouldnt even be a gap or a chapter change and I would read on think I was still in one persons head and the suddenly find that I have no idea as to how I got to where the hell I was and had magically been put into someone else’s story without realising. As the story progress however I became more accustomed place names and thing people would be noticing and it eventually stopped happening (kind of). It was very disorientating! Though I assume some indication was put into the actual copies of the books, so I wouldnt be too concerned about that.

That last bit being ignored however, I hope to add this to my collection on my shelves rather than just my kindle, and have been trying to get others to read it so I can discuss the book with them. Really, who wouldnt like a story fill with mages, knights fighting bravely in battle, elves shrouded in mystery, legends of dragons, and not to mention a bunch of strong and deadly women! So yes, I suggest this book to anyone you enjoys fantasy and can handle it in epic size format, and anyone who likes to see strong female characters.

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Book Review – City Of Fallen Angels

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Title: City of Fallen Angels [The Mortal Instruments 4]

Author: Cassandra Clare

Genre: Young Adult, Supernatural, Romance

Length: 424

Rating: 3 Star

Book Series Reviews: 12, 3, 4, 5, 6

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Description/Synopsis:

The Mortal War is over, and sixteen-year-old Clary Fray is back home in New York, excited about all the possibilities before her. She’s training to become a Shadowhunter and to use her unique power. Her mother is getting married to the love of her life. Downworlders and Shadowhunters are at peace at last. And—most importantly of all—she can finally call Jace her boyfriend.

But nothing comes without a price.

Someone is murdering Shadowhunters, provoking tensions between Downworlders and Shadowhunters that could lead to a second, bloody war. Clary’s best friend, Simon, can’t help her—his mother just found out that he’s a vampire, and now he’s homeless. When Jace begins to pull away from her without explaining why, Clary is forced to delve into the heart of a mystery whose solution reveals her worst nightmare: she herself has set in motion a terrible chain of events that could lead to her losing everything she loves. Even Jace.

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

Dang. I don’t know if its just cause after the action of the last book or not, but this one fell soo flat for me. It wasn’t bad, but it does not give me high hopes for the rest. God it should have just ended with the last…

For the first and most frustrating part of the entire book for me. We spend LOTS of time inside Simon’s head. As if this wasn’t bad enough, Clare has decided to try and turn him to some lady’s man because he has ‘vampire mojo.’ What a load of crap. NOTHING about Simon has any mojo. He shouldn’t be able to have any girlfriends let alone two which he is keeping secret from each other. What the hell is wrong with those two? What the hell is wrong with Issy more when she still kind of likes him when she finds out what he has been doing? I lost so much respect for her, it nearly ruined her whole character for me.

In terms of action in the plot nothing much happens until the last third of the book. Because our main bad guy died in the last book, because the series was supposed to be over then, we have to be introduced to a whole bunch more characters and get all their back stories to try and create a new plot. We get so much about new characters that are introduced and so much about our side characters that Clary and Jace really fell to the way side.

Not that I minded that much about this half the time because whenever we did get some Clary and Jace time they were almost always complaining to each other or just completely ignoring the other one. I thought we were passed this rubbish!!!! I like Jace less and less with each book. He needs to get over these issues which he just creates in his own head.

And what is with everyone, and I mean like everyone, suddenly having secrets? Yeah sure some can, but really, does everyone need a deep dark secret or whatever that they need to keep hidden? It made the story over complicated.

Pretty much the thing that made the story for me was the ending of the book. I actually screamed when it happened. But thats all I am going to say on the matter cause I don’t want to ruin the really only good thing about the book for you.

I did really like the fact that Clary started doing Shadowhunter training. It was interesting to see her try and better herself this way. Perhaps she will learn to be less silly now that she is getting training in it.

If this had been the first book for the series I really don’t think I would pick it up and read the rest of them. I was interested in the ending because I already knew and loved the characters and everything that happened before. It I had just come in on this book it wouldn’t have worked for me. Apparently it gets better from here on out, so those reading along don’t worry too much. Keep reading.

Till Next Time…