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Book Review – Dragonfly In Amber

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Title: Dragonfly In Amber [Outlander 2]

Author: Diana Gabaldon

Genre: Historical Fiction, Fantasy, Romance

Length: 743

Rating: 4 Star

Series Review: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 7.5, 8, 8.5, 9

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Description/Synopsis:

For nearly twenty years Claire Randall has kept her secrets. But now she is returning with her grown daughter to Scotland’s majestic mist-shrouded hills. Here Claire plans to reveal a truth as stunning as the events that gave it birth: about the mystery of an ancient circle of standing stones… about a love that transcends the boundaries of time… and about Jamie Fraser, a Scottish warrior whose gallantry once drew a young Claire from the security of her century to the dangers of his.

Now a legacy of blood and desire will test her beautiful copper-haired daughter, Brianna, as Claire’s spellbinding journey of self-discovery continues in the intrigue-ridden Paris court of Charles Stuart… in a race to thwart a doomed Highlands uprising… and in a desperate fight to save both the child and the man she loves.

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

It took me forever to get through this book in audiobook form, and I enjoyed nearly every moment of it. However, if anyone is intending on doing it through audio book over a period of months, I suggest you take notes after each session because its length makes it really hard to remember many details. I apologise in advance if this review is lacking. It took me about 6 months to finish this book listening to a couple of hours a week! Also, this review is filled of spoilers. Don’t read on if you don’t want spoilers.

When it comes to writing style, there isn’t anything I can fault of Gabaldon’s writing style. I think she weaves an amazing story. All the settings are brought to life and all the characters are so detailed and have such depth.

But what the hell is with that opening.

Im not saying it was bad. It was brilliantly done. But going from one audio book to next audio book without the above synopsis I had no idea what was happening. Clair has a fully grown daughter and she has gone back to Frank to raise this daughter and Jamie is nowhere to be seen. I was so confused. I thought I had skipped a book so I stopped for ages because I could not understand what was happening. But no, it was the right book. And it took ages to go back and at least start finding anything out.

This whole book had me, because I knew something so so so sad was going to go down at the end because I knew we had to end back at the beginning. I both love and hate that. While is was not as strong for me in this book as it was in The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender, I love this effect in books. When you know where you have to end, but each moment you are just dreading its approach and it doesn’t get boring.

While I did not mind the time that Clair and Jamie spent in Paris, it certainly had very interesting parts, I found this to be the part of the story that dragged the most for me. There were other parts in the rest of the book, but it is so worth getting through these dragging moments because Gabaldon just keeps throwing stuff at you left right and centre.

I adored the new character Fergus. I thought he was adorable and his relationship with both Jamie and Clair was just way too cute. They should really just adopt that kid.

But Clair and Jamie both did such stupid things in this book. I particularly wanted to murder Jamie. At the end out Outlander we find out that Clair is pregnant, and I don’t know about you but I also didn’t believe that Black Jack was dead. So when he came back I was not overly surprised. Clair makes Jamie promise not to kill him yet because she doesn’t want Frank to die and Jamie agrees. Clair also is having a difficult pregnancy and is pretty much on bed rest. But of course, Black Jack does something vile and then we find out that Jamie has run off to go kill him, despite promising Clair, basically declaring that his revenge means more to him than his family, and of course Clair has to chase after him to try and stop him. Then all hell breaks loose, and Clair looses the baby and nearly dies right along with her child.

So much of the pain in this book could have been avoided if Jamie had just used his brain. I pretty much hated him for the rest of the book. I hated Clair a bit too because she shouldn’t have gone after him, but mostly Jamie. After months and months they do end up making up, but I was so mad at Clair for forgiving him for ages. Then to top it all off she had to have sex with a disgusting man to get him out of jail for said duel with Black Jack. SO MUCH RAGE.

Fast forwarding to the end of the book, I did feel bad for Jamie when he has to kill his uncle for Clair and he gained a bit of my forgiveness back then. Then Jamie sends Clair back through the stone and we get their emotional parting, leaving us back at the start of the book. We are at the time with Geillis Duncan is in Clair’s current timeline and I thought she was going to help Clair and Jamie and somehow make it so they never have to separate and warn her so she doesn’t go off to her death but nope. They get there too late and the only thing they get out of her being in this story is that now Brianna believes her mum. I don’t know if I like Brianna or not yet, we shall see…

We go through this whole thing thinking that Jamie is dead but it turns out he isn’t. That is where it all ends. Damn cliffhangers!

Im going to leave this here. This is a very long review about my feelings regarding… mostly one thing that happened in this book, but hey, its the bits that got the most emotion from me and they cannot be expressed in little words!

 

Till Next Time…

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From Manga To Anime – Vampire Knight

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Title: Vampire Knight [Vampire Knight Season 1]

Genre: Supernatural, Romance, Anime

Rating: 5 Star

Anime Series Reviews: 1, 2

Manga Series Reviews: 1-5, 6-10, 11-15, 16-19

Description/Synopsis:

Vampire Knight tells the story of Yuki Cross. The earliest thing she remembers is being attacked on a snowy night by a vampire, and being rescued by Kaname Kuran, who is also a vampire. The story takes place 10 years after that event, Yuki is now the adopted daughter of the Headmaster of Cross Academy. She and her longtime friend Zero Kiryu keep peace at the academy, making sure no problems arise between the Day Class (humans) and the Night Class (vampires). However, the peace they try to keep is fragile, and personal feelings begin to interrupt their duty. It’s based on the manga by Matsuri Hino, which is excellent. If VK is half as good as the manga, it’ll be a great anime. There is some action, but expect more romance from VK.

Anime Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

Oh how I love it.

For the most part the anime follows really closely to how the manga was written and I love it even more for that. However, it does go off script and change a few things now and again. The third episode for example is pretty much their own creation. It shows things that never happened in the manga and moves around and hints at things that dont get mentioned till the end of volume five like Ichiru Zero’s brother. He gets mentioned a couple of times but he was not brought up in the manga for quite awhile. Yagari also gets introduced differently. He just shows up in the manga and he gets introduced in the anime.

Im a little sad to say that the anime is not as well drawn as the manga. I find the faces a bit… odd at times. That being said though it is still very pretty and they went to great lengths to make certain scenes stand out. Like when Yuki remembers things or is having inner turmoil they really play upon the ideas of how that would look visually from the manga. I think some of those sections are my favourite art wise.

The soundtrack for the anime (thus far) is very simple but very well chosen I feel. The music is very dark and it suits the overal mood of the anime very well. The opening and closing songs are also well done. The opening song for this season is Futatsu No Kodou To Akai Tsumi by ON/OFF, and though it kind of has an upbeat sound, I interpret it as more of a song that demonstrates all the struggles they are going through, its up and down and kind of has a just keep going feel to it. The beautifully drawn and Matsuri Hino inspired opening art also feels that way to me. The ending song is Still Doll by Kanon Wakeshima has a very different feel to it. The music is both creepy and dark. It has moments with it perks up with the creepy and then kind of goes down into despair. This combined again with the inspired darker Matsuri Hino VK drawings of Yuki sitting with a creepy bunny with red tear running down her face. This I think is great cause it kind of speaks to how Yuki always feels like no matter what she does someone she loves gets hurt. Still Doll and just Kanon Wakeshima in generally are some of my favourite music to date.

If I were to suggest which language you should watch it in, I would suggest Japanese with English subtitle. Now, I may be a bit bias here suggesting that. The first time I watched Vampire Knight it was with English subtitles and whichever way I see/do something first is generally the way I would prefer it from there on. However, if I try to ignore that fact I think I would suggest it anyway. I don’t think the English voice actors were very well chosen, they just don’t really suit their personalities. I could probably accept most peoples but Kaname’s is just awful. The English voices try to make everyone seem happier than they are and Kaname just doesn’t have that naturally happy upbeat. He should always sound mysterious! Not chipper…

But what really matters in anything you want to invest your time in be it book or series? Is it good. Oh god yes it is. Do you still love the characters in the anime? Yes when they were in Jap with Subs. The anime portrayed them very well and because they stuck pretty closely to manga it conveys the characters correctly. Is there still action and romance? Oh god yes, if there wasn’t then it wouldnt be the same story in the slightest. A romance story that has people struggling back and forth not knowing what do to with each other in amongst a world that is naturally bloody and violent.

I think I would recommend that people start with the anime if they want to do this series. The anime is a bit easier to follow because of how they introduce things and kind of simplify everything, however, if you even remotely like the anime I suggest you start reading the manga. It continues on way after the anime ends and it is just in general is much better.

On a side note, Vampire Knight is where I got my ending line for my blogs. At the end of each episode it says

I’ll also show you a sweet dream

————————————- next night

it stuck with me until I got what I use now. Now go watch the anime!

Till next time…

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Book Review – The Glittering Court

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Title: The Glittering Court [Glittering Court 1]

Author: Richelle Mead

Genre: Young Adult, Romance

Length: 400

Rating: 3 Star

Series: 1, 2, 3

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Description/Synopsis:

Big and sweeping, spanning from the refined palaces of Osfrid to the gold dust and untamed forests of Adoria, The Glittering Court tells the story of Adelaide, an Osfridian countess who poses as her servant to escape an arranged marriage and start a new life in Adoria, the New World. But to do that, she must join the Glittering Court.

Both a school and a business venture, the Glittering Court is designed to transform impoverished girls into upper-class ladies who appear destined for powerful and wealthy marriages in the New World. Adelaide naturally excels in her training, and even makes a few friends: the fiery former laundress Tamsin and the beautiful Sirminican refugee Mira. She manages to keep her true identity hidden from all but one: the intriguing Cedric Thorn, son of the wealthy proprietor of the Glittering Court.

When Adelaide discovers that Cedric is hiding a dangerous secret of his own, together they hatch a scheme to make the best of Adelaide’s deception. Complications soon arise—first as they cross the treacherous seas from Osfrid to Adoria, and then when Adelaide catches the attention of a powerful governor.

But no complication will prove quite as daunting as the potent attraction simmering between Adelaide and Cedric. An attraction that, if acted on, would scandalize the Glittering Court and make them both outcasts in wild, vastly uncharted lands…

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

I would like to thank Penguin Random House Australia for sending me a copy of this book for an honest review.

I was so excited when I heard this book was coming out. I loved the other books that I have read by Richelle Mead and when I saw that she was writing a new series I jumped at the opportunity to get my hands on this book.

Plot wise I had heard a lot of talk that it was like the Selection (which I have yet to read), and with that came a lot of negativity because of how people felt about those books. Because I have yet to read those and I had all faith in Mead’s writing I was not deterred despite the fact that the plot only had mild interest to me. I don’t watch tv shows of this nature and have not read any books that follow the same sort of idea, but I had such faith.

I am sad to say that my faith was holding this book up a bit too high. I am not saying that I didn’t like this book, it did have parts which I enjoyed and it was a very easy read to get through. However, the plot was not amazing. I enjoyed myself right at the beginning,  Adelaide’s transition from woman of high standing to trying to pretend to be a maid was amusing. However I grew tired of it because nothing was ever taken to the next step. Nothing really got my interest or got my heart pounding. Everything was very mellow, even the romance. More intense romance or twists and turns could very well have saved this book for me.

The writing was all very disorientating. Both the plot and the writing style in this book brought back all the bad memories I have of Ruby Circle. The writing was very messy. While I was reading this book I had no idea that each book in the series would be telling the story another girl’s point of view to the same events. I didn’t find this out until later, and it made reading the book very disorienting. One of the ‘main’ girls in this book, which I now know will get her own book, was barely in the story. We kept getting told that these two other girls were very important but then we wouldn’t get any actual story of them and they just pop in and out at random times. Before I knew the structure of the series, I had no idea why these important people had such little appearance in the story.

I would like to go more into characters, but I honestly cannot remember anything about them. It has been awhile since I read the book, but even then normally I remember things. Scandals, people I like, my ideas on whats to come regarding people… But I have nothing.

So with that I think I need to stop this review here. I had many issues with this book, but they mostly came into play after the girls are taken to the new land. Before then when the girls where in ‘training’ for their new life I rather enjoyed it. If you are looking for the quality or that Richelle Mead that you got from Vampire Academy, I would not pick up this book. If you liked the selection though and haven’t read Mead before then I think this would be a good book for you to pick up.

 

Till Next Time…

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Book Review – Soundless

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Title: Soundless

Author: Richelle Mead

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance

Length: 266

Rating: 3 Star

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Description/Synopsis:

In a village without sound…

For as long as Fei can remember, no one in her village has been able to hear. Rocky terrain and frequent avalanches make it impossible to leave the village, so Fei and her people are at the mercy of a zipline that carries food up the treacherous cliffs from Beiguo, a mysterious faraway kingdom.

When villagers begin to lose their sight, deliveries from the zipline shrink. Many go hungry. Fei and all the people she loves are plunged into crisis, with nothing to look forward to but darkness and starvation.

One girl hears a call to action…

Until one night, Fei is awoken by a searing noise. Sound becomes her weapon.

She sets out to uncover what’s happened to her and to fight the dangers threatening her village. A handsome miner with a revolutionary spirit accompanies Fei on her quest, bringing with him new risks and the possibility of romance. They embark on a majestic journey from the peak of their jagged mountain village to the valley of Beiguo, where a startling truth will change their lives forever…

And unlocks a power that will save her people.

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

First I would like to thank Penguin Australia for sending me a copy of this book for review and I am sorry it has taken me this long to post it despite the fact I read it ages ago.

This book… I so wanted to enjoy this book despite all the bad things I had hear about it. I was still hoping that people just didn’t like a story outside of Vampire Academy. But I was really rather disappointed. It had so much potential. I mean just think about a small isolated town that can’t hear a thing and take great pride in their visual works because its their only medium and suddenly someone wakes up and they can hear things! Sounds pretty damn good doesn’t it? So much potential. . .

I will say this positive for the book though. Its still Mead’s writing. She has a way of writing things in a very simple yet still interesting way and lets you fly through her books. I really enjoyed the descriptions of the sounds.

One of the main things that I agree with everyone else about is the world building. There could have been more world building and this probably would have made the story more interesting. However, if I had to pick between what we did get and fixing something else that deeply annoyed me in this book I would leave the world building as it was.

The art aspect of the story was also a bit ruined for me. In this town everyone is divided into three classes, Artists, Suppliers, and Miners. Artists are the highest ranking and Miners are the lowest and thusly in this land with limited food the Miners are given the least amount of food. I can see why they Artists rank the highest since they create and document their history in a visually appealing way, but I don’t get why the food isn’t given out evenly or you know based on each individual. Miners have the hardest job, and supply the Suppliers with the things they need to get them all food so wouldn’t you want to keep them in the best health possible? By like… giving them more food?

Then we have our characters, which I am not even going to go into individually because I don’t remember much about them by themselves. There were not really flushed out, even the main characters. I wasn’t too invested in them and I didn’t care too much about the love that was happening either. It was a bit forced.

Now for the bit that annoyed me the most. The ending, and really the only fantasy part in this whole book. Oh my gods I hated it. I won’t go into it encase there are still some who want to get into this book who hasn’t yet, but it was so random. We had basically no fantasy up until then and it was so disorientating to suddenly have have some. The book could probably have been better had it just accepted the fact that it wasn’t a fantasy rather than panicking about the lack of it at the end and throwing some in.

I think this is where I will leave this review for now. Guys, it sounds bad, and in the grand scheme of things it was, but I really did enjoy at least the first half of the book and it was after than point that it started to go downhill for me. There are others who have really enjoyed it, so if it sounds like you would like it pick it up for cheap and give it a go. Its short, its not like you will be wasting loads of your time. If it sounds a bit iffy for you though just stay away. You wont get anything from it.

 

Till Next Time. . .

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Book Review & Event – Our Chemical Hearts

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Title: Our Chemical Hearts

Author: Krystal Sutherland

Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Mental Health

Length: 313

Rating: 3.5 to 4 Star

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Description/Synopsis:

Henry Page has never been in love. He fancies himself a hopeless romantic, but the slo-mo, heart palpitating, can’t-eat-can’t-sleep kind of love that he’s been hoping for just hasn’t been in the cards for him—at least not yet. Instead, he’s been happy to focus on his grades, on getting into a semi-decent college and finally becoming editor of his school newspaper. Then Grace Town walks into his first period class on the third Tuesday of senior year and he knows everything’s about to change.

Grace isn’t who Henry pictured as his dream girl—she walks with a cane, wears oversized boys’ clothes, and rarely seems to shower. But when Grace and Henry are both chosen to edit the school paper, he quickly finds himself falling for her. It’s obvious there’s something broken about Grace, but it seems to make her even more beautiful to Henry, and he wants nothing more than to help her put the pieces back together again. And yet, this isn’t your average story of boy meets girl. Krystal Sutherland’s brilliant debut is equal parts wit and heartbreak, a potent reminder of the bittersweet bliss that is first love.

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

Principal Valentine walked past at one point and spotted me, my forehead pressed flat against my desk, and said, “Page. Aren’t you supposed to be in class?”

To which I replied, without sitting up, “My teenage hormones have rendered me too emotionaly fragile to be in a learning environment right now.”

Valentine was silent for a few seconds, then she simply said, “Carry on.”

So I did.

I would say a big thank you to Penguin Random House Australia for sending me a copy of this book for review!

The way I came about getting this book was really… sort of like the universe telling me I had to read it. I was looking around at author events happening in Brisbane since I had such a pleasant time at BWF and I saw an event for Krystal Sutherland to talk about her debut book Our Chemical Hearts, a book I had yet to hear anything about at this point, at Riverbend Books and thought it sounded interesting so if I had the time then I would probably go. Then a couple of days later I received the Penguin email with the books available for review over the next couple of months and there it was! And its publicist just happened to be the very first publicist to give me a chance as a reviewer and send me a physical ARC. At this point the decision was pretty much made for me at this point so I sent off an email requesting the book and the Monday before the Friday event I had the book in my hands.

Now anyone who has sort of been on here for awhile that Mondays and Tuesdays are pretty much ride off days for since my schedule is filled the the brim so I was actually quite worried that I would get the to event and not have finished the book. But I managed to fly through this book in a two day stint. The writing style was very easy to read and it flowed. If I were to compare this book to other debut YA books by other authors I would not have guessed that this one was a debut.

I also thought the characters were nicely diverse and had depth to them. The only one that annoyed me (sometimes) was the only Aussie character Murray. Sometimes his slang was nauseating, but other than that everyone was fine. I think all the actions taken by each were things that people would have actually done, and none of dialogue felt forced or pointless at any point. Each character also enhanced the story or served a purpose and they didn’t feel like fillers.

I’d been truly drunk only once before, when I was sixteen. Murray had coerced me into drinking tequila with him, to test the legitimacy of the ‘one tequila, two tequila, three tequila, floor’ theorem. Over the course of the evening I discovered that ‘one tequila, two tequila, three tequila, floor’ is wildly inaccurate. It’s more like one tequila, two tequila, three tequila,vomit all over your clothes, cry while your father puts you in the shower, vomit some more, cry and ask your mother to cook you ‘salmon eggs,’ whatever that is, be put to bed by your mother, decide you’re going to escape your parents’ totalitarian regime, vomit in the garden while escaping, be put back to bed by your father, floor.

Now here comes my big issue. While I loved the plot and I thought it was really interesting to read about a story that was different from the other YA books I have read, I also didn’t like it because the entire time I was just screaming at Henry. WHAT ARE YOU DOING?! IN WHAT WAY DO YOU THINK THIS WILL END?! THIS IS NOT A HEALTHY RELATIONSHIP! WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU?! I loved the idea of becoming more beautiful after being broke, but that takes much time a and willingness to be fixed and Grace had no interest in any of that. I would like to take this moment to tell anyone is you are in a relationship in anyway similar to this one RUN FOR THE FUCKING HILLS.

The event was amazing and I am so glad I went. I love hearing authors talk about their books and lives or influences and Krystal had us all laughing at a few points. I of course got my book signed as well which is always a plus. Riverbend Books was also a very lovely bookstore that I has never visited before, and has inspired be to do a tour of Brisbane book stores at some point.

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The part I really enjoyed though was once the event was over. I got to finally meet the publicist (who I will leave unnamed just encase people try to hassle her) who gave me my first shot and sent me so many books since then, talk with the author, the bookstore owner/manager, as well as the moderator Rhianna Patrick. All of whom were lovely lady’s and were so enthusiastic about everything. Rhianna was very offended about my lack of twitter usage so now I shall have to try and become better at twitter haha. In all serious though is was amazing to be able to talk to these ladies for as long as I did :)

I think this is where I am going to leave this here. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes sad YA books, and I would recommend everyone to go to as many author events as possible!

 

Till Next Time…

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Book Review – My Heart And Other Black Holes

my hearts and other black holes

Title: My Heart and Other Black Holes

Author: Becky Albertalli

Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Mental Health

Length: 302

Rating: 3 Star

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Description/Synopsis:

Sixteen-year-old physics nerd Aysel is obsessed with plotting her own death. With a mother who can barely look at her without wincing, classmates who whisper behind her back, and a father whose violent crime rocked her small town, Aysel is ready to turn her potential energy into nothingness.

There’s only one problem: she’s not sure she has the courage to do it alone. But once she discovers a website with a section called Suicide Partners, Aysel’s convinced she’s found her solution: a teen boy with the username FrozenRobot (aka Roman) who’s haunted by a family tragedy is looking for a partner.

Even though Aysel and Roman have nothing in common, they slowly start to fill in each other’s broken lives. But as their suicide pact becomes more concrete, Aysel begins to question whether she really wants to go through with it. Ultimately, she must choose between wanting to die or trying to convince Roman to live so they can discover the potential of their energy together. Except that Roman may not be so easy to convince.

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

I am going to put a warning here like I do at the start of any book I review that revolves around suicide. I have very strong, negative views on the matter. If you, or anyone you know, or even if its a topic you sympathise with, you may not want to read my review. I will do my best to not sound like a jerk, but I generally cannot understand and have little sympathy on the matter. I apologise in advance. If this sounds like something you will not handle reading about, give this review a miss.

But just because it’s cowardly doesn’t guarantee it’s going to be easy.

I like the plot of this book, despite the rant I just gave. I think it was an interesting way to have people meet each other and take their journey together. The ending for these kind of books is generally predictable and I knew at least part of the result even before I cracked open the book, but learning how they came to be where they were at the start of the book, and how they changed between then and the end is something that interests me. I read these kind of books to try and get a better understanding on why some people commit suicide, but sadly this book didn’t help change my opinion or enlighten me in anyway like All The Bright Places did. There were a number of things that annoyed me too much to really make me have a better understanding about what people with depression go through, and it was really very predictable.

In these moments, it always feels like my skin is too thin, like everyone can see right inside me, can see my empty and dark insides.

The writing style was probably my favourite part of the book. I am sure that you can see that by the number of quotes that I snuck into the review. I found many of the words to be very captivating and they were the things I connect to the most in terms of understanding. If the plot and the character development had of been more of to speed with the way things were explained or written, this book would have gotten a higher rating from me.

Maybe we all have darkness inside of us and some of us are better at dealing with it than others.

While I felt for Aysel and understood why she had the kind of feelings that she did, I didn’t connect with her like I did Roman. Roman to me, was genuinely suffering to the point where he was drowning, his issue was that he was unsure of how to swim in his emotions. Which ones to let go, which ones to hold on to, and whether or not he was allowed to feel any different. Aysel, while still having to deal with really traumatic things, I didn’t feel like they were things couldn’t let go of. That if she had just opened her mouth, things could have been better for her. There were things people go do and say to help her through what she was going through since a lot of her issues stemmed from other people, unlike with Roman where he had to come to those conclusions on his own because his issues where with himself.

Saying all that though, Roman made me far angrier than Aysel did at times. The way he acted because of his feelings, made him a manipulator, and just generally an complete selfish ass for the most part. He needed Aysel for his own reasons, and didn’t much care about hers for a long while. Confusing isn’t it? In terms of who I think I liked better as a person, it was probably Aysel, but in terms of actually understanding why they had come to the decision that they have to die, its Roman.

SPOILER – I didn’t like the way Aysel got over her issues really either. Yes, love can help you overcome many things and can help you get through dark times in your life. Did it have to be the romantic kind of love? It would have been much better story to me if it was just his friendship and his understanding that helped. If it lead to more later, that could have been cute, but it wasn’t gradual enough for me. – END SPOILER

I think I will end this review here before it gets much longer. I am not sure really who I would recommend this book to. If you want a romance book, this is not for you. If you want something that is a good representation of how depression actually is, I do’t think this book covers that really either. But I suppose that the book did raise some interesting ways to think about life and death. If these kinds of books interest you, I would read for the writing and the pictures it creates, just go into knowing that its probably not the best one out there.

 

Till Next Time…

 

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Mini Mondays – Midnight Embrace, What She Left, Sprout of Deception

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midnight embraceTitle: Midnight Embrace

Author: Amanda Ashley

Genre: Romance, Supernatural, Adult

Length: 378

Rating: 2 Star

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Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

When I thought back to the times I first read the Amanda Ashley books I have, this is the one I remembered liking the least. Now that I have read it again I can clearly see why. The characters were very simple and very cliché. The story repeated itself so often I started counting how many times things popped up. I hated how he was always going I wont leave you but then two seconds later he would say I’m a monster get away from me. She was such a weak characters because she was supposed to be ‘innocent,’ but she should have been stronger. Then to top it all off the ending was very rushed.

Also, only people who have read the book will understand this but what on Earth happened to the horse?!

The only reason why this book got a 2 star was because I liked some of the romance sections in it, and has a nice poem at the very start of the book. I would not recommend this book to anyone, there are far better Amanda Ashley books, or just romance books in general out there.

what she leftTitle: What She Left

Author: T.R. Richmond

Genre: Mystery, Thriller

Length: 380

Rating: DNF 25%

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Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

Thank you Penguin for sending me this book for an honest review!

The first thing you will notice here is that I didn’t give this book a rating. This my first DNF (did not finish) review and I am feeling a bit iffy about it. I am sad I cannot say I got further than 1/4 of the way through the book, so I thought it would only be fair if I left the rating off these reviews because didn’t finish them.

One of the reasons I only got 1/4 of the way through is that I just couldn’t get into the format of the way it was written by using articles from the news, internet, peoples laptops, letters and what not. I found it really disorientating and the information these articles were giving us I just found really boring.

I did really like the idea of the plot and I really wanted to get into it. If anyone has finished this book, PLEASE tell me if you had these issues at the start and that I just need to push through. I feel bad about it too cause it was an ARC too D:

81NJh0tcJDL._SL1500_Title: Sprout of Deception [The Hangman’s Replacement 1]

Author: Taona Dunisani Chiveneko

Genre: Mystery, Cultural

Length: 492

Rating: DNF 30-50%

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Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

I am pretty sure I got this book in a goodreads giveaway years ago, so I just want to say thank you to the author for giving me the book.

I tried. I really did. I picked this book up and put it back down so many times. It got to the point where my kindle couldn’t even remember where I was up to at times so that’s why I don’t know at exactly what point I was in the book before I stopped it all together.

The first character we are introduced to I didn’t mind. I was interested in getting to know him and what he was going to have to go through with his new life. The story just got so ridiculously boring and slow and I didn’t care about a single thing that was being said or was happening. I think I might have moved onto another guy, but he was only slightly more interesting.

This lack of interest in a character and what was happening, combined with the fact that I just generally didn’t ever understand what was happening with the plot made this book a no go for me. What does a carnivorous plant have to do with hiring a hangman? It made no sense and didn’t have a point to me.

 

Till Next Time…

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Top Ten Tuesday – If You’re In The Mood For X

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 Books To Read If You Are In the Mood To Swoon

I had a look at my past TTT’s and I haven’t done a romance list in a while so that is what you are getting today. If you want to see my last one check it out here. Remember though, those books made it for quality too, where I am more focusing on swooning now. May your hearts burst with the swooning <3

1. Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier. Their love and the way it is presented is probably one of the best things I have ever read.

2. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. P&P has been kicked off its number one spot but it cannot be kicked any lower than this.

3.  Cinder by Marissa Meyer. I cannot believe I nearly forgot about this book. I had to move a bunch of things around to stick it in! Kai and Cinder are just adorable.

4. The Host by Stephanie Meyer. I still swoon over Ian.

daughteroftheforest Pride-and-Prejudice_BN

Cinder_Cover thehostcover

 

 

 

 

5. Losing it by Cora Carmack. I associate funny and light books with swooning really.

6. Beautiful Mess by Lucy V. Morgan. So funny, the chemistry is great.

7. Blue Spring Ride by Io Sakisaka. Frustration. So much, but it still makes me swoon.

Losing It beautiful mess Blue Srping Ride 1

 

 

 

 

8. Ouran High School Host Club by Bisco Hatori. The swooning only pops up every now and then in the first half of the series but becomes more and more apparent in the second half.

9. Cress by Marissa Meyer. This book, while so so so swoon worthy, is this far down the list because I didn’t want to put too books of the same series one after the other, but I couldn’t bring myself to leave it off the list altogether.

10. Vampire Knight by Matsuri Hino. Kaname or Zero? I cannot choose!

ouran1 Cress_Cover vk1

 

 

 

Be sure to share your lists!

If you want any of the books listed please click on the thingyami below.

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Till Next Time…

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Mini Mondays – Passion, Fallen In Love, The Picture of Dorian Gray

minimondays

Welcome to a new segment I am introducing to try and help keep me up to date with my reviews, even if I don’t have much to say about them. This segment is going to be called Mini Mondays. In these posts I will be reviewing about 3 books in a couple of paragraphs. Because of the size and nature of these reviews, they will generally only be 1-3 stars. I might as well get on with it now.

Tpassionitle: Passion [Fallen 3]

Author: Lauren Kate

Genre: Young Adult, Supernatural, Romance

Length: 420

Rating: 2 Star

Series Reviews: 1, 2, 3, 3.5, 4

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Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

As some of you who have been following me for quite awhile, over two years ago I started reviewing the Fallen series by Lauren Kate. I reviewed Fallen and Torment and then the reviews stopped. This was for only one reason that up until I decided I would allow myself to do these mini reviews, I could not get past. I hated this book, and when I reviewing these books they were re-reads. I could not bring myself to read it for the third time (I read it twice because I forgot how much I hated it between its release and Raptures). I found this book to be completely pointless, and brought nothing to the story. There are only certain sections of this book that you actually need to read to know what on earth is happening in the last book. The story drags and just repeats itself over and over again. Part of me wants to let this detail go because Luce and Daniel’s story is very repetitive, but that doesn’t mean we needed to be reading about them at all. We got the idea of it when it was explained to us in the first 2 books.

So I am going to do something a little sacrilegious in the book community and basically suggest that you just skim read this book and avoid most of it. If it were not for those few moments on goodness or needed information, I would say just skip it. The Daniel chapters in the first half you can avoid all together.

 

Fallen-In-Love-cover-fallen-by-lauren-kate-26640712-1668-2524Title: Fallen In Love [Fallen 3.5]

Author: Lauren Kate

Genre: Young Adult, Supernatural, Romance

Length: 201

Rating: 2 Star

Series Reviews: 1, 2, 3, 3.5, 4

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Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

I feel a bit cheesy saying this but I will anyway, I did not fall in love with this book. We were given a number of stories to read about in the world of Fallen, which In theory could be really interesting. There are a wide variety of characters in this book and we do not know a lot of their backstories, which could be extensive when dealing with the lives of the angels on Earth. However, I found that I in general did not like the stories being told. The book in the Fallen series that I liked the least was the third book Passion, as you can see in my review above, and I found these stories were just more of the same rubbish we got in that book. The only story I liked in this book was the third story because we finally got Arianne backstory on how she got the scares that were such a big mystery in the main story but never got answered. I also found this one to be the best written. In the others I felt like the characters had lost their depth and were not acting like themselves, but with Arianne I didn’t have this issue.

If you liked the main series, and were driven crazy about what on earth happened to Arianne like I was, I would suggest picking up this book purely to read that story. I would even suggest skipping the other ones if they are not seeming too wonderful, since you will not be missing anything by not reading them.

picture of dorian grayTitle: The Picture of Dorian Gray

Author: Oscar Wilde

Genre: Classic, Gothic

Length: 214

Rating: 3 Star

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Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

Looking back on the comments I made about the book and the rating I gave it on goodreads, I am really surprised. In my head all I remember is totally hating this book and thinking it was one of the most boring books I have read with just horrible characters that just didn’t have any redeeming qualities.

When I actually stop to think about it though, I suppose it was not as bad as it came out to be in my mind. It did have series flaws that refrained me from putting it up anymore stars. In a style that I generally find in classics, certain parts of it just dragged on and on, and were painfully boring. Parts of the story held no purpose to the overall plot and were in there just as word filler. I remember hating Henry(?) and coming to hate Dorian, but I don’t think I had any issues with the rest of the characters.

I think if the book had of just focussed more on Dorian and his picture, and the fact he was struggling to stay beautiful on the inside while his picture made him beautiful on the outside. I would have loved more of a look at the fantasy element and the overall idea of what makes beauty and what we should seek in life. But those pointless and long bits just ruined the story for me.

Since my memory of the story was clouded by the bits I did not like, I cannot really say if anyone should read this book. I am most certainly not going to give it another try to find out.

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Book Review – Outlander

Outlander

Title: Outlander or Cross Stitch [Outlander 1]

Author: Diana Gabaldon

Genre: Historical Fiction, Fantasy, Romance

Length: 662

Rating: 4 Star

Series Review: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 7.5, 8, 8.5, 9

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Description/Synopsis:

The year is 1945. Claire Randall, a former combat nurse, is just back from the war and reunited with her husband on a second honeymoon when she walks through a standing stone in one of the ancient circles that dot the British Isles. Suddenly she is a Sassenach—an “outlander”—in a Scotland torn by war and raiding border clans in the year of Our Lord . . . 1743.

Hurled back in time by forces she cannot understand, Claire is catapulted into the intrigues of lairds and spies that may threaten her life, and shatter her heart. For here James Fraser, a gallant young Scots warrior, shows her a love so absolute that Claire becomes a woman torn between fidelity and desire—and between two vastly different men in two irreconcilable lives.

Review – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

This was a really enjoyable and entertaining read.

I found the plot of this book to be really interesting and entertaining. The idea of a ‘modern’ woman being transported back in time to a culture that did not like hers and then working out how to survive and how exactly how much she can or cannot to do to help the people she meets there with the things she knows is really interesting. As someone who has interest/beliefs in pagan culture I loved the way that she came to being in the past was through a connection with a stone circle. The book also taught me a bit about the time and the culture and made me fall more in love. It was a place I wanted to visit before, but it has been moved up the list!

The characters I both liked a didn’t like. It took me awhile to really become in invested in what was going on with this. I think this is because while the writing was great at weaving the story and once you got into it, to start off with I found it a bit stiff and it didn’t pull me in. After this time though I found myself freaking out about a number of interactions between characters. Claire I liked but I also found her greatly annoying at times. She didn’t know when to keep her mouth shut or when to wait for something and thusly got herself or others into loads of trouble that would never have happened if she was more sensible.

Though Frank was barely in the book I really desperately wanted her to go back to him for about half the book. What really surprised me was my attitude to Jamie, it was very like, hate, love. With the three stages of his and Claire’s relationship my feelings for him changed. In stage one I liked him and thought he was cute and friendly, but I still wanted her with Frank. The second part I actually really did not like him at all and just wanted her to beat him up. Then in the last part I was so happy that she chose him. I don’t know when the transition of emotions happened between stages 2 and 3, but when Claire was there deciding if she wanted Jamie or Frank I was freaking out that she might still want Frank. Serious panic.

One downfall I felt the book had was I think it was a lot longer than it really had to be. I will say this might be because I was listening to an audio book and I zone out easier this way, but I think there was a lot that didn’t need to be and the book was rather slow paced. There were a few full on moments like the ending, but they were very spread out and you had to get a through a lot before you got to them.

I recommend this book to anyone who likes historical fiction because overall I did really enjoy this book.

 

Till Next Time…