Category Archives: Feature

Book Playlist: Out of Control by Sarah Alderson

April 6, 2014

Remember a couple of weeks ago when I featured Sarah Alderson’s new book Out of Control out of control by sarah aldersonfor my Waiting on Wednesday pick? Well today I am lucky enough to be sharing the playlist for Out of Control! I’m slightly in love with the playlist.

Listening to this playlist just makes me even more excited to pick up Out of Control! My favourites from the playlist have to be I Won’t Let You Down by Alex Clare and Ungodly Hour by The Fray, but seriously, this playlist is full of total gems and is just plain awesome.

About the Book (Summary taken from Goodreads)
“When 17 year old Liva witnesses a brutal murder she’s taken into police custody for her own protection. But when the police station is attacked and bullets start flying it becomes clear that Liva is not just a witness, she’s a target.

Together with a car thief called Jay, Liva manages to escape the massacre but now the two of them are alone in New York, trying to outrun and outwit two killers who will stop at nothing to find them.

When you live on the edge, there’s a long way to fall.”

Are you excited for Out of Control? What’s your favourite song off the playlist?

Guest Post: Jamie Baywood

December 14, 2013

I’m very excited to welcome Jamie Baywood onto my blog today. She is the author of Getting Rooted in New Zealand, a travel memoir of the time Jamie spent out there. She has graciously provided me a wonderful guest post for me to share with you all here.

“It was always my dream to live abroad when I was growing up in California.  I had bad dating experiences in California and read in a New Zealand tour book that the country’s population at 100,000 fewer men than women.  I wanted to have some me time and an adventure. New Zealand seemed like a good place to do so. Although I intended to have a solo adventure I ended up meeting my husband a Scottish man in New Zealand.

I consider myself an accidental author. I didn’t go to New Zealand with the intentions of writing a book about my experiences there. I had funny experiences that I had trouble believing were true. I wrote the stories down to stay sane. I wrote situations down that were happening around me and shared them with friends. The stories made people laugh so I decided to organize the stories into a book and publish in the hopes to make others laugh too.

One of the first people I met was Colin Mathura-Jeffree from New Zealand’s Next Top Model. I had no idea who he was or that he was on TV when I meet him. He is friends with my former flatmate. We had a steep staircase that I kept falling down. Colin taught me to walk like a model so I wouldn’t fall down the stairs.

In New Zealand, I had a lot of culture shock.  One of the most memorable moments was learning the meaning of the Kiwi slang word “rooted.” One night I was brushing my teeth with my flatmate and I said, ‘I’m really excited to live in this house because I have been travelling a lot and I just need to settle down, stop traveling and get rooted’. He was choking on his toothbrush and asked me if I knew what that meant because it had a completely different meaning New Zealand than it does in the States.

I had the opportunity to write and perform for Thomas Sainsbury the most prolific playwright in New Zealand. I performed a monologue about my jobs in the Basement Theatre in Auckland. The funny thing about that experience was Tom kept me separated from the other performers until it was time to perform. I was under the impression that all the performers were foreigners giving their experiences in New Zealand. All of the other performers were professional actors telling stories that weren’t their own. At first I was mortified, but the audience seemed to enjoy my “performance,” laughing their way through my monologue. After the shows we would go out and mingle with the audience. People would ask me how long I had been acting. I would tell them, “I wasn’t acting; I have to go to work tomorrow and sit next to the girl wearing her dead dog’s collar around her neck.”

I love making people laugh more than anything else. I feel very grateful when readers understand my sense of humor. I plan to divide my books by the countries I’ve lived in. My next book will be about attempting to settle in Scotland. “

Thank you Jamie!

About the book Getting Rooted in New Zealand:

Craving change and lacking logic, at 26, Jamie, a cute and quirky Californian, impulsively moves to New Zealand to avoid dating after reading that the country’s population has 100,000 fewer men. In her journal, she captures a hysterically honest look at herself, her past and her new wonderfully weird world filled with curious characters and slapstick situations in unbelievably bizarre jobs. It takes a zany jaunt to the end of the Earth and a serendipitous meeting with a fellow traveler before Jamie learns what it really means to get rooted.

About the author Jamie Baywood:

Jamie Baywood grew up in Petaluma, California. In 2010, she made the most impulsive decision of her life by moving to New Zealand. Getting Rooted in New Zealand is her first book about her experiences living there. Jamie is now married and living happily ever after in the United Kingdom. She is working on her second book.

Getting Rooted in New Zealand is available in paperback and ebook on Amazon.

Jamie Baywood can be followed on the following sites:

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Amazon

Cast a Harry Potter Spell

November 7, 2013

cast an hp spell button

 

As you probably know, I’m a huge fan of book surveys, and I’m also a huge fan of Harry Potter, so when you combine the two, what happens? I immediately bookmark it for me to complete later! This was created by Jasmine over at Flip That Page, so everything in my post, bar my answers, are all hers.

Cast a Spell

Reparo
Fixes damaged objects

A book that needs some serious fixing: Everneath by Brodi Ashton. I really wanted to like it, but I had way too many problems with it.

Lumos
Creates a narrow beam of light

A book that deserves more attention: Chime by Franny Billingsley. This book deserves more of the RIGHT attention, none of that award hoo-ha that surrounded it.

Nox
Counters the effects of Lumos

An overhyped book: Breakfast at Tiffany’s by Truman Capote. Maybe I just didn’t understand it. But I don’t get why everyone seems to love it.

Accio
Summons a book from a significant distance

A book you’re anticipating: Burning Kingdoms by Lauren DeStefano. I adored Perfect Ruin and really want to continue on with the series.

Alohomora
Opens locked doors, unless bewitched

A book you want to be more open about: This Is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith. I just wanted so much more from this book. There. I said it.

Expecto Patronum
Conjures an incarnation of positive feelings

A book that made you cry, or at least want to: The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. *sob*

Morsmordre
Conjures the dark mark

A book you wish to mark as one of your favourites: Attachments by Rainbow Rowell. Not just one of my favourite adult books, but one of my favourite all-time books.

Petrificus Totalus
Petrifies victim

A book you wish to keep forever: All of my Harry Potter books. My all-time favourite book series.

Protego
Shield charm

An intimidating book you keep putting off: Les Miserables by Victor Hugo

Riddikulus
Used against a boggart

A book with a deceiving synopsis: The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater. But then again, I don’t think there’s a synopsis that could have done this book justice.

Lacarnum Inflamarae
Shoots fireballs

A book you wish to burn out of your mind completely: Dirty Laundry by Daniel Ehrenhaft

Wingardium Leviosa
Levitates objects

A book you wish to reread: Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour by Morgan Matson.

Avada Kedavra
Causes instant death

Worst book EVER: I don’t think I can actually answer this one, because what I consider to be the worst book ever is probably someone else’s favourite book.

Spells cast on you

Stupefy
Puts victim in unconscious state

A book with a chapter you couldn’t seem to get over: I’m sure pretty much everyone knows that I am IN LOVE with Chapter 17 of Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta, right?

Confundo
Causes befuddlement or forgetfulness

A book that generally confused you: The War of the Worlds by HG Wells.

Crucio
Inflicts unbearable pain

A book that was a pain to read: Sweet Venom by Tera Lynn Childs. I just couldn’t get into this one at all, and that bugged me a lot.

Episkey
Heals relatively minor injuries

A feel-good book that you enjoyed: Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins. This book gave me a lovely dose of the warm fuzzies.

Expelliarmus
Temporarily disarms an opponent

A book with a swoon-worthy character: Saving June by Hannah Harrington. Jake Tolan is my perfect book boyfriend.

Impedimenta
Impedes target’s progress

A book that kept you up all night reading: All Our Yesterdays by Cristin Terrill. Even though I got way too tired and understood NOTHING so I had to give up until the following morning.

Silencio
Immediate silencing

A book that left you speechless after you read it: Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver. (Holy crap, you guys. That book. The ending. Woah.)

Legilimens
Allows you to delve into someone’s mind

A book with well-developed characters: Pretty Girl Thirteen by Liz Coley. Even though most of the characters were inside Angie’s head, they were still all well-developed.

Levicorpus
A spell that turns you upside down

A book that changed your mind about a character from its prequel: Sever by Lauren DeStefano. She totally changed my mind on Cecily’s character.

Obliviate
Used to hide memories

A book with a story you can’t remember: Dead Until Dark by Sookie Stackhouse. All I know is that it had vampires and sex in it.

Peskipiksi Pesternomi
Useless spell

A boring book that had absolutely no effect on you: Low Red Moon by Ivy Devlin. Blah.

Reducto
Breaks through solid objects

A book that convinced you to reconsider another genre: Florence by Ciye Cho. Fantasy has never seemed so good!

Rictusempra
Tickling spell

A book that made you laugh: Christmas Eve at Friday Harbor by Lisa Kleypas. Any book that has a scene with an exploding turkey is going to make me laugh, okay?

Sectusempra
Offensive spell that violently wounds the target

A book that may have scarred you for life: The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne. The ending! Oh my goodness, the ending of this book was so cruel. I’m not scarred in a bad way, I’m just sad over it.

Tarantallegra
Makes you dance uncontrollably

A series finale that made you feel giddy: Sever by Lauren DeStefano. Because I thought the ending was perfect.

Bombarda Maxima
Causes an explosion that breaks through obstacles

A book that made you explode with the feels: Allegiant by Veronica Roth. And not always good feels.

Finite Incantatem
Nullifies other spells

A book you thought you’d dislike but ended up loving: Delirium by Lauren Oliver.

An Ice Princess Heart: Book Blitz

October 28, 2013

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Title: An Ice Princess Heart ( A Shard of Ice Novella)

Author: Alivia Anders

Purchase on Amazon

Purchase on B&N

When a string of men vanish without a trace along the coast of France, Lilix Morgan seeks to uncover the source of the mysterious deaths. Aided by four other immortal Originals, they comb the coast, only to find out the horrible dark truth; one of them is the culprit.

An Ice Princess Heart is the first book in a novella series leading up to the release of A Shard of Ice on April 14, 2014.

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Goodreads

THEIR SOULS, REAWAKENED.

When 13-year-old Lilix Morgan is found alive and floating on a bed of ice at sea, everyone counts it a miracle. Kidnapped nearly four weeks earlier, she remembers nothing of her mysterious abduction. When she tries to remember what happened, she hears only a melody – a faint and delicate set of notes, strung together in a tune she doesn’t understand.

THEIR POWER, UNMATCHED.

A year later and desperate to put the lingering nightmares of her past behind her, Lilix crosses the country to enroll at Baelmorte Academy, aiming to become the violinist she once dreamt of. Things seem to be finally going well, and Lilix settles into a routine of sheet music and inspiration among new friends.

Then the dreams start.

The melody and night terrors she thought she’d left behind return with a vengeance, threatening to ruin her fragile version of normalcy. Then an unlikely ally tells her that she isn’t alone. That there are others just like her, fighting to hide their own shocking truths from coming to light. That they know who she is, and what she’s been through. Now, accompanied by four other girls, Lilix discovers her nightmares are larger than a single trauma; they’re a window to a hidden part of her soul, a place of immense power with a destiny that cannot be ignored.

THEIR BATTLE, IS ONLY BEGINNING.

With this knowledge comes a new and frightening reality. For Lilix has been reawakened to stop an age-old enemy, one thought to have been destroyed centuries ago. Trapped by her destiny, Lilix is torn between what feels right and what she remembers. Her memories tell her of a star-crossed love waiting to be reunited, of friendships and trust broken in the past. But can she save that love when reality brings her an enemy, and an evil that will be the undoing of them all if they don’t destroy it?

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About Alivia Anders

Alivia

Alivia Anders was thirteen when she fell headfirst into the world of internet fanfic and RPG-forum board sites that showed her the ‘back door’ into the world of writing. Four years and many hours spent glued to a computer screen later she found her true calling in writing.
Alivia currently lives with her family in her hometown of Coopersburg, PA. She frequently admits that if she wasn’t so intolerant to dairy she’d live at her local ice cream shop called The Inside Scoop.

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Cover Reveal: Golden Dunes of Renhala

June 27, 2013

All the way back in January, I read and reviewed an awesome urban fantasy book called Renhala. And I loved it. So you can imagine just how excited I am to be taking part in the cover reveal for book number two in the series: Golden Dunes of Renhala.

And here it is:
Golden Dunes cover art

Isn’t it pretty?! I love it even more than the Renhala cover, and seeing it makes me so excited to read the book!

As this is the second book in the series, the synopsis below may contain spoilers for the first book, so read at your own risk!

Goodreads Summary: “How do you live with a secret so dark and so deeply woven into your being that it threatens to smother your very existence, with no known way out? Use it to your advantage.

Kailey Rooke, karmelean, and now a possibly unethical karma-for-hire, has spent the past year jumping from project to project, without any real hope for salvation. With repercussions from her actions at every turn, she discovers that as time goes on, she loses a bit more of herself to that which feeds on her anguish, that which is thriving inside her own body.

When a new contract to find a missing girl arises, Kailey attempts to put her past and its associated problems on the back burner, but she soon finds out that treachery and deceit lie shortly ahead in Golden Dunes, only giving face to new problems, with one leading right back to her childhood past.

She struggles to complete her contract as her own life teeters on a fulcrum, constantly tipping according to karma’s whim. How long will she keep her balance? Which way will she fall?”

The book will be published later this year(!) I know I can’t wait to read it!

Author Interview: John A. Heldt

March 31, 2013

I am hugely excited to be able to interview John A. Heldt, the author of the Northwest Passage series on Music, Books and Tea today! I have adored this series, and am lucky enough to have been able to read all three books in the series, and, unsurprisingly, they’re all fantastic!
Three things readers may not know about you.

The first is that I triple majored in college. I went through a phase my first two years where I changed my major as often as some people change clothes. I finally decided to get a degree in my three favorite disciplines: journalism, history, and political science. The second thing is that I love dogs – English bulldogs, in particular. Some may not think they look like much, but I think they’re God’s greatest creation. I also love fishing and once caught my weight in salmon off the coast of Washington state. I was 14 at the time.
The Journey, the second book in the Northwest Passage series was more a companion novel than a sequel to The Mine. What made you write a direct sequel to The Mine?

I wrote a sequel to The Mine because, frankly, a lot of readers requested it. Many wanted to know what had happened to Grace between December 7, 1941, and June 17, 2000. Others wanted to read more about their favorite characters. Still more wanted to know if Grace had told Ginny that Joel was her grandson. All three matters are addressed in the sequel. Even so, I didn’t decide to write The Show until last fall. I liked how The Mine ended and wasn’t sure I could build on what many considered the perfect happy-ever-after finish. But when I thought more about the possibilities, I realized that I could build on the original. Grace had a story to tell and an adventure of her own to experience. When I finally started the sequel, the words just flowed. I wrote the first draft of The Show, a nearly 300-page work, in thirty-five days.
What has been your favourite era to write throughout the three books?

That is a surprisingly difficult question. If I had to pick one, it would probably be the early 1940s, the era of The Mine. It was such an incredible time, one that is understandably romanticized in film and literature. Many of us write and read precisely because we like to escape to a time that is much different than our own. But writing about 1979 and 1980, the era of The Journey, was more personally fulfilling. It was a time I had experienced firsthand. Writing the second book was like taking a long walk home.
If you could travel to any era, what would it be and why?

It would probably be the early 1960s, if I could spend it in California. Everything about that time and place appeals to me: the cars, the music, the culture, the climate. They are the very things showcased in American Graffiti, one of my favorite movies. The World War II years, however, run a very close second.
Out of Joel, Michelle and Grace, who was the easiest character to write? And the most fun?

Joel was the easiest to write because he’s male. I was able to draw him from my own experience and the experience of people I knew in high school and college. Grace was obviously more of a challenge. No matter how well you think you know the other gender, you really don’t. That’s why I depended a lot on the input of female friends and relatives. But because Grace was more of a challenge to write, she was also the most fun to write. I had not developed her character fully in The Mine, so I had ample opportunity to be creative in The Show.
How many books do you have planned for the Northwest Passage series?

I plan to write five but won’t rule out more. I hope to publish the fourth book by the end of this year. In Book 4, Kevin Johnson, son of Brian and Shelly Johnson of The Journey and a geology student of Professor Joel Smith’s, will travel as a 22-year-old in 2013 to Wallace, Idaho, in 1910. He will see Halley’s Comet and experience the Big Burn, the largest wildfire in U.S. history. The fifth book also will feature the grown children of characters from an early book, but it will be set in Seattle in 1964. If I end the series there, then I’ll probably move on to historical fiction.
What was your favourite book you read in 2012?

I enjoyed Stephen King’s 11/22/63.
Thank you John! I am so excited to see that there’s at least two more books for me to enjoy in the Northwest Passage series! Be sure to check back on Thursday for my review of The Show, the third book in this great series.
About the Author
the show by john a heldtJohn A. Heldt is a reference librarian who lives and works in Montana. The former award-winning sportswriter and newspaper editor has loved reading and writing since writing book reports on baseball heroes in grade school. A graduate of both the University of Oregon and University of Iowa, he is an avid fisherman, sports fan, home brewer, and reader of thrillers and historical fiction. Heldt is the author of THE MINE, THE JOURNEY, and THE SHOW, the first three novels of his Northwest Passage time-travel series.

Author Interview: Gretchen Powell

March 25, 2013

Today, I’m lucky enough to be interviewing Gretchen Powell, the author of Terra, on Music, Books and Tea! Terra is a fantastic dystopian that I’m really enjoying reading. Gretchen was kind enough to answer some questions that I sent her – after I actually attached them to the email…don’t ask.

Three things readers may not know about you?
I don’t know if these actually should count, since I allude to them in my author bio pretty frequently, but readers should probably know anyway, haha.
1. I’m pathetically obsessed with my dogs. I have two miniature schnauzers, Harry and Daxter, and they are simply the best.
2. I’m a huge Potterhead. I looove Harry Potter–noticed what one of my dog’s name is? My birthday party last year was actually Harry Potter-themed (totally age appropriate, I know) and it was epic.
3. I’ve moved around a ton in my (relatively still short) life. I’ve moved over 9 times so far, living everywhere Taiwan to Poland and pretty much everywhere in between!

Did you set out to write a dystopian novel?
I did. I adore dystopian fiction, and I always knew I wanted to write in that genre, even before it became so immensely popular. I love how so often books in this genre provide a fantasy that’s juuuuust plausible to us in reality. You know, a world ravaged by nuclear war, or by overpopulation, or by environmental degradation, or something that makes us think, Man, we should probably do something to ensure that DOESN’T actually happen. Or at least, that’s how I feel dystopian fiction should be. After all, dystopia is really a subset of science fiction (which I clearly also love, because Terra really starts to straddle the line between dystopia and sci fi by the end), and the reason why science fiction is so fascinating is because it’s rooted in science in the first place. The unknown and fantastical inspired by the known and logical.

How long did Terra take to write?
It took almost exactly a year to take Terra from concept to publication. Now, the actual time spent writing? Well, I had one single chapter for about 5 months. And then when I finally got my act together and buckled down with writing, I cranked out the rest of the first draft in about 8 weeks. So it was both a slow and fast process for me.

Did you plan for the Terrestrials series, or did it just creep up on you?
I knew from the beginning that the overall story I wanted to tell wouldn’t fit in one book. (Or, it could, but it’d be a major pain to slough through, since it’d be so long.) So while I wanted Terra to be able to stand on its own with a complete story, I always knew that I’d be annoying many readers with a cliffhanger, because it was destined to a be a series from the get-go.

Who is your favourite character to write?
I do love all three of my main characters, Terra, Adam, and Mica. They’re the ones I spend the most time with, so I do love writing them. But since they’re the obvious answer, I’ll actually say that my favorite character was a fairly minor one in the first book. Charlie, one of the secondary characters that we don’t even meet until over 2/3rds of the way through the book, was one of my very favorites to write. I think it’s pretty clear even in the short amount of time that we spend with her that there’s a lot more to her than we get to see. Plus, she’s comprises primarily of snark and sass, so what’s not to love about writing her?

What’s your favourite thing about being a writer?
I don’t know if I can narrow it down to just one thing! Writing is something I have always loved, and being able to actually do it, to have people read and appreciate my creations? It’s just amazing. I just love that this is something I am able to share with people. I know that probably sounds cheesy, but it’s true.

What was your favourite book you read in 2012?
Hands down, it was John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars. I absolutely LOVED that book. It destroyed me in the best possible way. Green’s writing, the characters, the tragically beautiful storyline… man, my heart feels full just thinking about it.

Thank you Gretchen! The Fault in Our Stars was one of my favourite books from 2012 as well, and I think Gretchen summed up my feelings for it perfectly! Be sure to check back later this week for my Terra review!

About Terra:
“A broken and desolate Earth. A young girl struggling to survive. A lost boy with a powerful secret.

A discovery that will change everything.

In the distant wake of a plague that has decimated the Earth’s population, humanity is split in two: The rich and powerful live in skycities that float overhead, while those who remain on the ground have gathered in settlements strewn across a dying planet.terra by gretchen powell

Eighteen-year-old Terra Rhodon is a terrestrial–a denizen of the barren groundworld–who makes her living as a scav. Long abandoned by her father, her caregivers gone, Terra supports herself and her younger brother, Mica, by scouring the earth for discarded scraps and metals to recycle for profit. One day, while on a routine scavenging run, she discovers something that shocks her home settlement of Genesis X-16. When the value of her discovery is revealed, Terra’s world is turned upside down.
Terra suddenly finds herself asking questions no one will answer. Her search for the truth leads her to Adam–a beguiling skydweller unlike any she has ever met. But Adam has secrets and a quest of his own, and with him by her side, the world Terra thought she knew begins to unravel. Soon her discoveries unearth a terrifying conspiracy that has the potential to shatter everything–a revelation that will test the bonds of loyalty, family, and love.

The first book in debut author Gretchen Powell’s anticipated Terrestrials series, Terra catapults you through a story filled with blood-pumping action, intrigue, and surprising twists that will both wrench and warm your heart. As the hidden truths of this world unfold, new dangers that loom on the horizon are sure to leave you waiting breathlessly for the sequel.”

Author Interview: Malia Ann Haberman

December 17, 2012

Today I’m very excited to welcome Malia Ann Haberman to my blog! Malia is the author of Chase Tinker & The House of Magic, which I’m reading at the moment. Let me tell you, it’s brilliant! Malia was kind enough to answer a few questions that I sent her, so I’m going to stop rambling and cut straight to the interview!

Three things readers may not know about you?
Hmm…let me see…well, one thing is I’m a Ballroom Dancer and Instructor who is very clumsy, except when I’m on the dance floor; Another thing is I’ve never ever liked soda pop. And lastly, I’m not married, so no Mrs. Haberman. I’m just Malia. 🙂 (Rhymes with Maria.)

Where did the inspiration for Chase Tinker & the House of Magic come from?
My inspiration came from a dream. About 6 1/2 years ago I was working as a Real Estate Agent. After a day of showing homes to my clients, I guess I had houses on my mind because that night I dreamed I was living in a huge fancy house and every room had some sort of magical power in it. The next day, when I told my daughter about it, she thought it would make a terrific kids’ book. And she was right.

How long did it take to write Chase Tinker & the House of Magic?
It took me about 8 months to write around 110,000 words, but when I started sending it out to Literary Agents, I was told it was way too long. I also had it ending on a cliffhanger. Not a good thing for a first book. One wonderful agent told me I needed to rewrite the ending so that it could be a stand alone book and then take the part that was the cliffhanger and put it in the second book. So I did, and I’m really happy I listened to his excellent advice because it made “Chase Tinker and the House of Magic” so much better.

Who was your favourite character to write?
Maxwell the ferret was a great character to write, but I think, of the humans, Chase Tinker would be my favorite. As the main character, I loved making things happen to him. Good, bad, embarrassing, goofy, crazy; I just had a lot of fun with it.

Did you set out to write a fantasy book?
I did. I love fantasy and magic because you can do so many fun and fantastic things with the worlds you create. Where in real life can you conjure a pepperoni pizza from your nose? Or really become invisible? Or shoot lightning bolts from your eyes? I have such a good time coming up with ideas. 🙂

Did you always want to be a writer, or was it something you just fell into?
I’ve wanted to be a writer ever since around the time I turned 14. Though, I have to admit that during that time, I spent a lot of hours writing angsty poetry and sappy, cringe-worthy love stories.

What’s been your favourite book you’ve read in 2012?
I’ve really enjoyed the continuing tales of Percy Jackson and his friends in the “Heroes of Olympus” books. The first Percy Jackson books are some of my favorites too.

About the Bookchase tinker and the house of magic by malia ann haberman”In Chase Tinker’s world, magic, lies and secrets can be a lethal combination…
Thirteen-year-old Chase Tinker can’t understand why he has the power to move things with his mind. Besides that, his dad has been missing for over a year, causing his mom to be too upset to pay much attention to her sons, so now he’s been busted for shoplifting. As if this isn’t enough to worry about, his younger brother Andy suddenly has a weird magical ability too.

Can things get any crazier? Chase thinks.

Then, a grandfather they thought to be long dead arrives at their door. He wants Chase and Andy to come visit him for the summer so they can learn about their supernatural heritage and why they have magical powers in the first place.

The boys soon find out that Grandfather, along with their cousin Janie, lives on a remote island in the middle of Puget Sound in an out-of-this-world house where fantastic magic can be found in practically every room, stairway and corridor. Chase can’t believe their dad has been keeping so much from them.

It’s an even bigger shock when Chase learns that all their magic is controlled by a very powerful and mysterious Relic in the attic, and if anything happens to this relic, every bit of Tinker magic will be lost forever. He’s even more disturbed when he learns his family has a dark and powerful enemy that is determined to steal all their magic, their house and their relic.

Now Chase must find a way to stop these evil beings, while at the same time figuring out what has happened to his dad, unraveling even more Tinker lies and secrets and not letting on that he has a huge crush on the housekeeper’s daughter.”

Cover Battle: Through the Ever Night by Veronica Rossi

December 15, 2012

This is one of my most anticipated books of 2013. I really liked Under the Never Sky when I read it earlier this year, and it had really grown on me, because I am ridiculously excited to see what is going to happen next with Perry and Aria. Then I checked out the covers for Through the Ever Night and knew I was going to have to have the UK and US versions duke it out between them, because they are both incredible!

through the ever night by veronica rossi us
So, this is the US cover for Through the Ever Night. IT HAS PERRY ON THE FRONT. Ahem. I think the colours that have been used for this are stunning. I love how the pink is in the centre and how it fades out with all the swirls around it, I think that it’s really eye-catching. I adore the title font too! I’ve been a fan of the font since I saw it on the Under the Never Sky cover, and I’m really pleased that they’ve kept it for the sequel. In fact, I’m just really chuffed that these books actually look like a series, instead of two separate books by the same author.
through the ever night by veronica rossi uk
And this is the UK cover for Through the Ever Night. I am in love with the title font for this one, I think the swirls are just really pretty, and it really draws the eye towards it. I love the cover image too, with the girl (Aria? I think it’s Aria.) standing in the grass overlooking that stunning landscape. Whoever designed that image really deserves a pat on the back. My only problem with the UK cover is the lack of similarities between the first book and this one. The first book was pink and white and had a totally different font. Whilst the two won’t look too out of place next to each other, they won’t look as neat as the US covers do.

So, overall, which do I prefer? I think it’s got to be the UK cover, purely for the stunning design. I love the continuity the US cover has, and I think it’s a fantastic cover, but the UK one does it for me. Which cover do you prefer?

End of Year Book Survey

December 10, 2012

2012 end of year survey
I love surveys. I love lists. You all know that this was coming, don’t you? This is an end of year book survey hosted by Jamie at The Perpetual Page-Turner. It’s such a well-rounded survey that kind of covers all the bases that I’d want to touch upon in a round-up review of the year. So, without further rambling, here is my survey!

1) Best Book You Read In 2012? (You can break it down by genre if you want)
Contemporary YA: The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
Paranormal: Finding Sky by Joss Stirling
Dystopian: Divergent by Veronica Roth
Fantasy: Luminaire by Ciye Cho
Adult Fiction: Whisky Charlie Foxtrot by Annabel Smith

2) Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?
The War of the Worlds by H.G Wells. I thought I’d love it, but I just really couldn’t get on with it.

3) Most surprising (in a good way!) book of 2012?
Finding Sky by Joss Stirling. I was pretty sure I’d enjoy it, but I didn’t expect to fall in love with the characters as much as I did.

4) Book you recommended to people most in 2012?
The one that sticks in my mind the most is the Divergent series by Veronica Roth. I remember texting my friend ‘you just have to read this series, because it’s incredible!’

5) Best series you discovered in 2012?
Oh, wow. Divergent, The Chemical Garden Trilogy and Delirium all stick out in my mind.All dystopian and all fantastic!

6) Favourite new authors you discovered in 2012?
Veronica Roth is incredible, as is Lauren DeStefano. I finally read my first book by Sarah Dessen (Lock and Key) and fell in love. And Melina Marchetta, Jellicoe Road was incredible and blew my mind.

7) Best book that was out of your comfort zone or was a new genre for you?
I hadn’t really read much dystopia in the past, but 2012 was the year of dystopia for me, so all those that I’ve read really stick into my mind, particularly Dark Inside by Jeyn Roberts. I also read some fantasy this year, and those three books: Florence, Luminaire and Tears of Min Brock were all incredible.

8) Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2012?
Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake. Once I was reading I couldn’t actually stop.

9) Book You Read In 2012 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year:
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. I just need a huge amount of time between reads, because my emotions will not cope with me re-reading more than once a year.

10) Favourite cover of a book you read in 2012?

second chance summerfever by lauren destefano
I can’t choose between the pair of them. I love them both for different reasons, and I love the fact they both represent their respective stories.

11) Most memorable character in 2012?
There are so many that spring to my mind! Ruby from Lock and Key, Riley from Forsaken, Sky from Finding Sky. And, even though he wasn’t a main character: Ben from Jellicoe Road. I ADORED him.

12) Most beautifully written book read in 2012?
Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta. My heart still hurts.

13) Book that had the greatest impact on you in 2012?
Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson. I don’t think it could have had a bigger impact if it had tried.

14) Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2012 to finally read?
I can’t believe I waited this long to read something by Sarah Dessen! Boy was I missing out. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky, because it’s a book I’ve wanted to read since I was 14.

15) Favourite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2012?
The entire seventeenth chapter from Jellicoe Road is a favourite, but that’s too long to include in here, haha!

“What is family? They were the people who claimed you. In good, in bad, in parts or in whole, they were the ones who showed up, who stayed in there, regardless. It wasn’t just about blood relations or shared chromosomes, but something wider, bigger. We had many families over time. Our family of origin, the family we created, and the groups you moved through while all of this was happening: friends, lovers, sometimes even strangers. None of them perfect, and we couldn’t expect them to be. You can’t make any one person your world. The trick was to take what each could give you and build your world from it.” Lock and Key by Sarah Dessen.

And this one, because I nearly spat my tea everywhere after I read it:

“Well, don’t expect us to be too impressed. We just saw Finnick Odair in his underwear.” Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins.

16) Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2012?
(I’m not including novellas in this)
Shortest:The War of the Worlds by H.G Wells
Longest: City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clare

17) Book That Had A Scene In It That Had You Reeling And Dying To Talk To Somebody About It? (a WTF moment, an epic revelation, a steamy kiss, etc. etc.) Be careful of spoilers!
Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake, right at the very end with Tybalt. The Jem and Tessa scenes in Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare too. I needed to talk about everything that was running through my head. And I needed to squeal about it too!

18) Favorite Relationship From A Book You Read In 2012 (be it romantic, friendship, etc).
Jamie & Cora from Lock and Key by Sarah Dessen.
Zed & Sky from Finding Sky by Joss Stirling.
Jake & Harper from Saving June by Hannah Harrington.

Those are my top three. I could go on for ages about all my favourites though!

19) Favorite Book You Read in 2012 From An Author You Read Previously
Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson. I adored Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour, and Second Chance Summer did not disappoint!

20) Best Book You Read That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else:
The Delirium series by Lauren Oliver. If it wasn’t for all the book bloggers raving about it, I would have never picked up the books.

Book Blogging/Reading Life in 2012 (optional)
 

1) New favorite book blog you discovered in 2012?
I’ve discovered so many this year! The one that sticks out the most in my mind is definitely Faye from A Daydreamer’s Thoughts. Not only do I love her blog, she’s such a brilliant person! I can’t gush about her enough!

2) Favorite review that you wrote in 2012?
Oh, this is a tough one! Probably my Saving June review.

3) Best discussion you had on your blog?
I wrote a post about My Reading Habits and how they’ve changed since I started blogging. It was nice to see I wasn’t the only person who had gone through this!

4) Most thought-provoking review or discussion you read on somebody else’s blog?
There’s been far, far too many for me to even begin listing on here.

5) Best event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, memes, etc.)?
All the readathons I’ve participated in have been great fun, particularly the Bout of Books readathons! I loved taking part in the Ready, Set Reviewathon. And Bloggiesta was probably the best thing I could have taken part in!

6) Best moment of book blogging in 2012?
Probably receiving a tweet from Morgan Matson thanking me for my review of Second Chance Summer. I spent the rest of the day on cloud nine.

7) Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?
My review of The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks. I think it has something to do with the fact that the movie was released quite close to the date I posted my review.

8) Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?
I don’t know? I’m really grateful for any comments and views I get, because I really don’t expect them!

9) Best bookish discovery (book related sites, book stores, etc.)?
Aside from all these fabulous blogs I am now following, Evernote, which I was introduced to during Bloggiesta. Whilst it’s not strictly bookish, it’s the handiest tool I’ve ever used!

10) Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?
I set my Goodreads challenge to 45 books, then when I reached that, I upped it to 60. I’ve now met that target too, so I feel pretty accomplished!

Looking Ahead…


1) One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2012 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2013?

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. Every year I say I’m going to read it, and every year I never do.

2) Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2013?
Check out my Top Ten Tuesday post from a couple of weeks back.

3) One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging In 2013?
Read more. Be a little more active within the blogging community. Keep on top of my reviews, and follow my blogging schedule and calendar a little more strictly!