Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Waiting on Wednesday #7

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine.  Here are the books that I am most look forward to reading.

Night School by Chrisiti Daugherty

UK Publication Date: 5 Jan 2012
Publisher: Atom
Pages: 320

Synopsis from

When everyone is lying, who can you trust?

Allie Sheridan's world is falling apart. She hates her school. Her brother has run away from home. And she's just been arrested. Again. This time her parents have finally had enough. They cut her off from her friends and send her away to a boarding school for problem teenagers. But Cimmeria Academy is no ordinary school. It allows no computers or phones. Its students are an odd mixture of the gifted, the tough and the privileged. And then there's the secretive Night School, whose activities other students are forbidden even to watch. When Allie is attacked one night the school begins to seem like a very dangerous place, Allie must learn who she can trust. And what's really going on at Cimmeria Academy.

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

In My Mailbox #3

In My Mailbox is an event hosted by The Story Siren

Books I Brought This Week:

This is another 18 books.

Saturday, 10 December 2011

Review: Glass Houses by Rachel Caine

Glass Houses by Rachel Caine

UK Publication Date: 26 May 2008
Publisher: Allison & Busby
Pages: 361
Series: The Morganville Vampires #1
Format: Paperback
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Vampires, Young Adult
Rating: 4 out of 5

Morganville is a small town filled with unusual characters - when the sun goes down, the bad come out. In Morganville, there is an evil that lurks in the darkest shadows - one that will spill out into the bright light of day.

For Claire Danvers, high school was hell, but college may be murder. It was bad enough that she got on the wrong side of Monica, the meanest of the school's mean girls, but now she's got three new roommates, who all have secrets of their own. And the biggest secret of all isn't really a secret, except from Claire: Morganville is run by vampires, and they are hungry for fresh blood...

Glass Houses tells the story of Claire Danvers, a brainy 16 year old, who has been sent to college in Morganville by her parents. Not only is Claire the youngest college student in Morganville, she is also having a hard time making friends. This isn't made any easier as she has to share a dorm with girls that torment her for just being her.

Claire, realising that she's had enough of dorm life, decides to try living off campus. After looking a few different places, she finds an advertisement for a roommate at the Glass House. But what Claire doesn't realise is that the occupants of the Glass House have secrets of their own.

Once Claire moves in the story really picks up and doesn't stop until its shocking climax.

I found Glass Houses to be an interesting read, with characters that I both loved and hated at the same time. Rachel Caine has created a intriguing and mysterious town that I cannot wait to find out more about.

I recommend this book to fans of vampire novels.
(please note this review was written back in November, but was never published on the blog.)

Review: The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

UK Publication Date: 15 September 2011
Publisher: Harvill Secker
Pages: 400
Format: Hardcover
Genre: Literary Fiction, Fantasy, Romance
Rating: 5 out of 5

In 1886, a mysterious travelling circus becomes an international sensation. Open only at night, constructed entirely in black and white, Le Cirque des Reves delights all who wander its circular paths and warm themselves at its bonfire.

Although there are acrobats, fortune-tellers and contortionists, the Circus of Dreams is no conventional spectacle. Some tents contain clouds, some ice. The circus seems almost to cast a spell over its afficionados, who call themselves the reveurs - the dreamers. At the heart of the story is the tangled relationship between two young magicians, Celia, the enchanter's daughter, and Marco, the sorcerer's apprentice. At the behest of their shadowy masters, they find themselves locked in a deadly contest, forced to test the very limits of the imagination, and their love.

The Night Circus is a book that only comes around once or twice a year, by this I mean it’s a book that captivates the reader so much that you can’t help thinking about it when you’re not reading it.This happen all the time for me.

I first became aware of this book whilst visiting my local bookstore and overheard a conversation between the assistant and a customer. He was basically asking her if she could recommend a really good book, and of course this was the book that she recommended. So being a curious person I had to have a look for myself.

The cover was mesmerizing.  I had never seen a cover that was black and white, with only a splash of red. When I picked it up and read the blurb I didn’t think it would be for me, but I decided to give it a go and I am so pleased that I did.

No sooner had I opened the book and read the first paragraph:

The circus arrives without warning.
No announcements precede it, no paper notices on downtown posts and billboards, no mentions or advertisements in local newspapers.  It is simply there, when yesterday it was not.

I was hooked. It took me back to the first time I visited the circus as a child. The mysterious tents, the strange sounds and the strangely dressed people. But the circus that I saw as a child was nothing like this one.

But you haven’t come to read about my childhood you’ve come for the review and so here it is. Erin Morgenstern has created a story that captivates the reader from beginning to end. She has created a world that is truly believable. Whilst reading I felt that I was really there seeing the circus, smelling the caramel popcorn. There are so many characters in this book, the circus being one of them that I would be lying if I said I didn’t like them all.

The story does tend to jump between different time periods, which can be a bit confusing at times, but I found this really interesting.It reminded me a lot of The Time Travellers Wife by Audrey Niffenegger, who is quoted on the cover of the book as saying ‘This is a marvelous read’ and ‘The Night Circus made me happy. Playful and intensely imaginative, Erin Morgenstern has created the circus I have always longed for.’

I will admit that I totally agree with her. Not only are the characters believable but Erin Morgenstern’s writing style is so lyrical. At times I thought I should be reading this book aloud. I guess this is helped by the fact that Erin is also a painter.

The Night Circus is a must read for anyone who is looking to escape into a world of magic, fantasy and romance. If this review hasn’t wetted your appetite to read it. Take a look at the book trailer.

Friday, 9 December 2011

Review: A Short History of Tractors in Ukranian by Marina Lewycka

A Short History of Tractors in Ukranian by Marina Lewycka

UK Publication Date: 2 March 2006
Publisher: Penguin Books
Pages: 326
Format: Paperback
Genre: Contemporary Fiction, Historical, Family Saga
Rating: 4 out of 5

Sisters Vera and Nadezhda must put aside a lifetime of feuding to save the emigre engineer father from voluptuous gold-digger Valentina. With her proclivity for green satin underwear and boil-in-the-bag cuisine, she will stop at nothing in her pursuit of Western Wealth.

But the sisters' campaign to oust Valentina unearths family secrets, uncovers fifty years of Europe's darkest history and sends them back to roots they'd much rather forget.

A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian is the most engrossing book I have read in a very long time. Ok the title is a little deceiving to start with, but you soon find out what the title is about. A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian is a family saga with a difference. Its actually three stories in one. The main story, as the synopsis says, is about two sisters and their struggle to save their father, Nikolai, from the clutches of gold-digger Valentina. Interspersed within the main story are two other stories. One being Vera and Nadezhdas' , or Nadia as she's known in the book, family history and the turbulent times during the war in the Ukraine. You then have the third story which is actually the title of the book. A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian is actually a book that Nikolai is writing.

Although this may seem confusing to start with, the three stories actually blend beautifully together. I didn't find the story funny at all, despite what the blurb on the cover says, but this didn't affect my enjoyment of the book.

My favourite character has to be Nikolai. For me he was the only character I found myself caring about. My least favourite character was Valentina. Not only was Valentina trying to steal his money she was also extremely abusive towards him.

Here is an excerpt showing the cruelty that Valentina shows towards Nikolai.

She corners my father as he is coming out of the toilet, bent over, fumbling with his flies.
'You living corpse!' she screeches. 'I will show you dooh-ress!'
She is wearing yellow rubber gloves, and has in her hands a tea-towel, wet from washing up, which she starts to flick at him.
'You useless shrivel-brain shrivel-penis donkey.' Flick Flick. 'You dried shrivelled relic of ancient goat turd!'
She flicks at his legs and at his hands that are stretched out for protection or in supplication. He backs away and finds himself pressed up against the kitchen sink.
-page 138.

I highly recommend A Short History of Tractors in Ukranian. I will definitely be reading more from this author.

Review: Shatterboy by Scott William Carter

Shatterboy by Scott William Carter

Publication Date: 8 July 2009
Publisher: Flying Raven Press
File Size: 165kb
Format: Kindle Edition
Genre: Fantasy
Rating: 3 out of 5


Let me start by saying that this is a free kindle short story.

Shatterboy tells the story of 54 year old, childless, divorcee Rebecca Wilson. Rebecca, having been married for 36 years to Don Wilson, finds a glass baby at a local recycling centre. Thinking that its just a glass figurine, Rebecca takes it home and it to her surprise it starts to move. Over the course of a few days the child grows at an alarming rate until the day he decides to leave home.

There was a few things that bothered me about this story. The first thing is more emphasis could have been put on each of the stages of Shatterboys life, but this didn’t detract too much from the story. The biggest let down for me was the ending, it ended to abruptly for my liking.

I guess Scott Carter was showing us how fast children grow up.

Overall Shatterboy was an interesting read.

Thursday, 8 December 2011

BTT: Mystery or Love Story

This weeks Booking Through Thursday question is:

All things being equal, which would you prefer–a mystery? Or a love story?

My Response:

This is an interesting question for me. I was originally a mystery lover, I enjoyed nothing more than sitting back to read the latest Patricia Cornwell novel. Then I was introduced to Young Adult fiction, and I was hooked.

Young Adult fiction has made love stories more interesting for me, I was always under the impression that for a story to be classed as a love story it had to be like Mills and Boons - big turnoff - but I am pleased to say that I was totally wrong.  I have read so many YA books now, that I can say love stories are the books I enjoy the most.

Thats my response to the question. What's your answer?

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Changes to blog

As you may have noticed there have been a few changes made to this blog, which I hope you all like. Here is a list of the changes that I have made:

1) The layout has been given a different look. Although I liked the way the blog look originally I thought it was time for a change. I have been looking for a design that fits in with the books that I read, and I think this layout does. Hopefully you think the same.

2) The blog now has a facebook page and a google plus page as well. So if you want to follow the blog on facebook and google plus then please feel free to do so.

Waiting on Wednesday #6

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine.  Here are the books that I am most look forward to reading.

Wolf Springs Chronicles: Unleashed by Nancy Holder & Debbie Viquie

UK Publication Date: 8 Dec 2011
Publisher: Doubleday
Pages: 400

Synopsis from

Who do you run with?
Who do you run from?
Who do you run to?

Katelyn is reluctant to start at her new school until she meets the handsome and intriguing Trick Sokolov. He's the closest thing to home she finds - an irreverent drama nerd who writes poetry, drives too fast, and has no desire to serve as her best guy friend. Before long, the popular Cordelia Fenner befriends her and invites her home, and Katelyn begins to think her new life might be ok after all, especially when she meets Cordelia's extremely hot brother, Justin. But as she spends more time with Cordelia's family, she realises that the Fenners are bad, mad, and dangerous to know - but how can she give up her only friend, and how can she ignore the Justin sets her blood on fire with a single look?

One night, Katelyn is viciously attacked and she begins to change in ways she cannot imagine.

She's now caught in the middle of an ancient war between werewolf clans - a war that Katelyn is detined to end. claims that this book has "all the heat, atmosphere and feudal background of Fallen and a love triangle to rival Twilight". I am really interested to see if it lives up to that claim. It sounds really interesting.

Buried Thunder by Tim Bowler

UK Publication Date: Jan 2012
Publisher: OUP Oxford
Pages: 240

Synopsis from

What secrets lay buried in the heart of a forest?

When Maya strays into the forest she also walks straight into a nightmare. It's not just the horrific discovery she makes among the trees, it's what's waiting for her at home. Something too terrifying to believe in. She's not even sure she believes it herself. Perhaps she's going mad, only imagining the sounds at night and the feeling of being stalked. Maybe she didn't see anything in that forest after all?

And there's another question: what was she doing there in the first dusk?

All she knows is that the eyes of the fox drew her there. They will do so again.

This is another book that sounds really interesting? Can't wait to read this late into the night.

So these are the books that I'm most looking forward to reading. What are you looking forward to?

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! All you have to do is:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn't give too much away! You don't want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR lists if they like your teaser!
Here's my teaser:

Thousands of miles away, in a crowded theater that thunders with applause for the man onstage, hidden in the shadows formed between the disused pieces of scenery backstage, Celia Bowen curls herself into a ball and cries.

~ page 29. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

Monday, 5 December 2011

It's Monday, What Are You Reading

Its Monday, What Are You Reading is a weekly meme hosted by Sheila at One Person's Journey Through A World of  Books.  This meme is a list of the book(s) that we read last week, what book(s) we are currently reading and what book(s) we plan on reading.

Book(s) I Read Last Week 

The Dead Girls Dance by Rachel Caine (review here)
Midnight Alley by Rachel Caine (review here)
Feast of Fools by Rachel Caine (review here)
Forgotten by Cat Patrick (review here)

Book(s) I'm Currently Reading

Misfit by Jon Skovron

Publisher: Amulet Books
Pages: 362
Format: Paperback

Jael Thompson has never really fin it. She's changed schools too many times to count. The only family she's ever known is her father, a bitter ex-priest who never lets her date and insists she attend the strictest Catholic school in Seattle. And her mother - well, she was a five-thousand-year-old demon. That doesn't exactly help.
But on Jael's sixteenth birthday, her father gives her a present that brings about some unexpected changes. Some of the changes, like strange and wonderful powers and the cute skater boy with the knack for science, are awesome. But others, like the homicidal demon seeking revenge on her family? Not so much.

Book(s) I Plan To Read Next Week (these may change)

Paranormalcy by Kiersten White

Publisher: HarperCollins
Pages: 335
Format: Paperback

Evie's always thought of herself as normal. Sure, her best friend is a mermaid, her ex-boyfriend is a faerie, she's falling for a shapeshifter and she's the only person who can see through paranormals' glamours, but still. Normal.

Only now paranormals are dying and Evie's dreams are filled with haunting voices and mysterious prophecies. She begins to suspect there is alink between her abilities and the sudden rash of deaths, and even worse, that she is at the centre of a dark prophecy promising destruction to all paranormal creatures.

I have heard a lot of good things about this book. I cant believe I waited so long to read it.

My Soul To Take by Rachel Vincent

Publisher: Mira Books
Pages: 345
Format: Paperback

Something is wrong with Kaylee Cavanaugh...

She can sense when someone near her is about to die. And when that happens a force beyond her control compels her to scream bloody murder. Literally.

Kaylee just wants to enjoy having caught the attention of the hottest boy in school. But a normal date is hard to come by when Nash seems to know more about the dark forces behind Kaylee's power than she does.

And when classmates start dropping dead for no apparent reason and only Kaylee knows who'll be next, she realises that finding a boyfriend is the least of her worries!

Again this is a book that I have been meaning to read for a while. Really looking forward to starting this one.

Sunday, 4 December 2011

In My Mailbox #2

In My Mailbox is an event hosted by The Story Siren

Books I Brought This Week:

This is a massive 28 books.


So thats what I brought this week. What did you get?