Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Fire in the Woods

Written by: Jennifer M. Eaton
Published by: Month9Books
Format: Kindle Edition
Pages: 238
Purchase From: Amazon  |  Book Depository

When a plane crashes in the woods near Jess’s home, the boy of her dreams falls out of the sky—literally. 
But David’s not here to find a girlfriend. He’s from another planet, and if Jess can’t help him get back to his ship, he’ll be stuck on Earth with nothing to look forward to but the pointy end of a dissection scalpel. But her father runs their house like an army barracks. and with an alien on the loose, Major Dad isn’t too keen on the idea of Jess going anywhere. 

So how the heck is she supposed to help the sweetest, strangest, and cutest guy she’s ever met? Hiding him in her room probably isn’t the best idea. Especially since her Dad is in charge of the squadron searching for David. 

That doesn’t mean she won’t do it. It just means she can't get caught. 
Helping David get home while protecting her heart—that’s gonna be the hard part. 
After all, she can't really fall for a guy whose not exactly from here. As they race through the woods with Major Dad and most of the U.S. military one breath behind them, Jess and David grow closer than either of them anticipated. But all is not what it seems. David has a genocide-sized secret, and one betrayal later, they are both in handcuffs as alien warships are positioning themselves around the globe. 

Time is ticking down to Armageddon, and Jess must think fast if she's to save the boy she cares about without sacrificing Earth—and everyone on it. 

My Rating: 4/5

Oh wow, where do I begin with this book. I guess I should start with the premise. The whole alien and human romance thing, strangely enough, wasn't the first thing that jumped out to me with this book. The thing that really pulled me in was the idea of this 'genocide-sized secret', then it was the romance because who can't help but love a little romance between an alien and a human. I really liked the idea of mystery and secrets that would surround it because I felt that it would add a little action that is always needed in a science fiction novel. So that is basically what pulled me into this book (that and the cover because seriously it's so pretty) and I was really overwhelmed how much I actually enjoyed this book. It took over my life and I couldn't, for the life of me, put it down.
My eyes narrowed. "You can't be from another planet. That's called science-fiction. Accent on the fiction. It's not real"
I'm not going to lie, I was expecting a lot when it came to this novel because of my love of alien books being so high (You can thank Jennifer L. Armentrout and her Lux series for that). So there were a few things that didn't sit right with me, the main one being how easy it was to guess David's secret, but they didn't really effect the overall happiness I had when reading this book. I loved the determination of Jess in her quest to help, along with the absolute innocence David had with the things he was experiencing. It was so cute and the characters were well written enough that I was really enticed by their chemistry and affect they had on each other, it was sweet yet sometimes maddeningly frustrating when they wouldn't see what was right in front of them.  
Ugh, when did my life become fodder for a cheap science-fiction novel? I could see the teenage girls flittering about it already: super cute alien, stupider-than-thou heroine and a bigger than life story with no chance of a happy ending.
All in all there wasn't much that I didn't love about Fire in the Woods. It was fast-paced and witty writing with brilliant characters that crept past your walls and made you love them. The only major downside that I had with it was I found it slightly predictable at times, but then it didn't really affect my overall enjoyment of the story as a whole. So I easily was able to look past it and sink into the story again and get gripped by all the events transpiring in their little mission. It's a brilliant novel that really awakens your heart and your emotions and putting your faith in these two characters into succeeding in their quest for everything to work out happily for them. I for one cannot wait for the second book in the series, Ashes in the Sky, so I can finally find out what happens next and get stuck into the story once again. 

Fire in The Woods
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Friday, 17 October 2014

Starlet's Man

Written by: Carla J. Hanna
Format: Kindle
Pages: 256
Purchase From: Amazon  |  Book Depository

Lights, Cameras, and Lies. 
High school student athlete, Manny Biro, is caught between the boy he should be and the man he wants to become.

Everyone around him accepts the Hollywood life. He doesn't. Manny wants no part of acting. On the surface, his childhood best friends seem to have it all: money, power, success. Between the lines, they are all confused. Alan is a messed up want-to-be director focused on pushing scenes to their sexy potential. Beth is an athlete driven to escape from a dark past. Janet is Manny's kid sister caught up in fashion and trends. And Marie is a lonely actress exhausted by the culture that makes everyone's favorite stories.

What is the price of fame for all the characters? Conflicts and truths will unfold in this thought-provoking installment of Carla Hanna's young adult Starlet Series, Starlet's Man.

My Rating: 3.5/5

Starlet's Man is the newest book in the award winning Starlet Series by Carla J. Hanna. It is the fourth installment in the series but is set before the series begins, making it a prequel novel, it gives a clearer understanding of the characters within the series. The thing that drew me in about this book was the idea of a how fame and fortune was woven into the story, because it sounded intriguing and something that I personally have never read before. So all in all I was completely excited to see how this book would turn out and whether or not it would be something I completely adore. 
"The focus on coupling is just social insecurity. I want love. I'm patient. I am a diamond and won't be costume jewelry to any guy."
Going into the book it became clear that there was another hidden message that makes the book stand out and that is the influence of Christianity and how it affects the actions of the main character. Manny looks to his religion when he feels insecure or when he is confused on how to act. Again this idea is something which I personally have never read before so I found it a compelling and refreshing idea that really helped me connect with Manny, as I felt that he was a little more realistic and developed. Having said this I personally do not follow Christianity so in some points I felt a little lost as too where the story was going. Not to mention it could sometimes feel a little overdramatic or childish when it came to the characters that didn't follow Christianity because it felt like all their actions were mean and disrespectful. But I don't know whether that was due to there being a big contrast in characters or just me not really understanding what was going on. 
The kiss brought a wave of energy carrying love and triumph. It meant nothing and everything.
While some aspects of the book was lost to me, I really enjoyed the writing, the character development and loved how easy it was to get lost in the book. The writing is very descriptive with not a lot of dialogue, but I liked that because it was something new for me to get stuck into. I really understood how confused and lost Manny was when it came to girls. He seemed to love everyone but didn't feel he deserved any of them also. When I thought it was the other way around, the girls he loved didn't deserve him. I really loved that because it made Manny a lot more relate-able and lovable as a character. You just wanted to help him and love him because he was just so sweet and his values and beliefs were so morally right, yet he couldn't really catch a break. Having said this, there were times when I was slightly confused by Manny and his intentions. Sometimes I wasn't so sure as too what he was thinking, even though we are reading from his perspective.
Manny sighed. He leaned foward. The man he wanted to be and the boy he was being were disconnected. 
All in all, I felt that Starlet's Man was a really compelling and interesting read. Some ideas were lost on me because I felt that while in some cases the character's shined in other cases they seem really childish and immature which was due to the influence of Christianity and the overdramatisation of certain aspects. Having said this I loved how different this book was to the books I normally read and I really connected with Manny and how vulnerable and lost he seemed in the beginning of the book but how sure of himself at the end. Overall this book is a really good introduction to the series and really encourages you to delve into the world of the Starlet. It was a really interesting read and I would recommend it to anyone who is looking for a fast read that can inspire you with good values and beliefs on Love and how to treat people you love.

Starlet's Man (The Starlet, #0.5)
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Friday, 10 October 2014

Fickle Friday Post

Okay so this Friday's post is making up for lost time with all the book hauls I missed...there are a lot of books! My book buying has built up since the last one in June so I thought to do an extra long one and put it in this Friday's post to make up for lost time. So be warned because its a biggie.

Book Haul #4

If I Stay and Where She Went by Gayle Forman

I'm pretty sure a lot of people have heard of these books because If I Stay has had a lot of hype lately due to it being made into a film. I have read and reviewed If I Stay and loved it and I am very much looking forward to Where She Went to find out what happens to these beautiful characters, what went wrong and all that jazz.

Heroes of Olympus series by Rick Riordan

Well I have talked about these a lot lately, done a long review of the first four books and then completed the series with a review of the fifth and final book yesterday. I love this series and while I'm a little sad it's over it really ended fantastically. I couldn't of asked for any more and it's literally made me so excited for his new Magnus Chase series to see how the Asgard gods get brought in. So excited!

When I heard about this book I just had to get it. I mean it's Percy narrating the well known stories and myths of the Greek Gods, how could that get any better. I've read this and loved this. It was just simply brilliant, just like his other books. He just can't write a bad story. I love all of them. 

Never Fade by Alexandra Bracken

I read The Darkest Minds earlier in the year and I have been waiting for this one to be released in paperback so it could match my collection. So when it was released I brought it straight away with no hesitation because this series is epically fantastic. A really good dystopian series, which is good because I am not a massive fan of dystopian reads but these novels gave me renewed hope because I could not put them down for the life of me.

The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare

Now I did already own these but there were on my kindle but because I loved the series so much I just had to get them in physical copies so I could present them on my shelves and just look at them. So I did and I don't regret it one bit.

Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

I brought this book simply because I had the first book in The Lunar Chronicles series so thought I would get the second one to build my collection. I do plan of getting the rest of the books in the series because I love books that revolve around fairy-tales and fairy tale retellings so I'm sure that I will enjoy these. 

Breathe by Sarah Crossman

Not going to lie when I say that I mainly brought this book because of the cover. It is simply gorgeous and it immediately caught my eye so I just had to get it, and when I read the blurb I got even more interested so I thought why not? 

These three were added to my book buying marathon because I had a mission to buy every john green book there was. I don't have them all, I think I still need Let it Snow, but I am so excited to get stuck into these because well they are John Green books so you know they should be fantastic.

The String Diaries by Stephen Lloyd Jones, I Can't Begin to Tell You by Elizabeth Buchan, The Giver by Lois Lowry, How to Knock a Bravebird From Her Perch by D. Bryant Simmons, Elemental Reality by Cesya MaRae Cuono and Itch Rocks by Simon Mayo

All these books I won through Giveaways on Goodreads. I have read and reviewed three of them (The Giver, Elemental Reality and Itch Rocks) and I am currently reading The String Diaries which is quite creepy and a little confusing at times but a full review should be coming soon. All books caught my attention through ratings on Goodreads but mainly through their covers, they all have cute/interesting covers. 

The Scorch Trials by James Dashner

This book I brought because I had read and liked the first book in the series, The Maze Runner, so I thought I would give the rest of the series a go. Hence why when I saw this book for £3.00 I was like yep, buying. 

Hexed by Michelle Krys

Okay so I brought Hexed because I was in the mood to try a witches book and I had heard a lot of things about this book. Plus it was at a bargain price so I thought it was worth it.

Anna and the French Kiss series by Stephanie Perkins

These books I brought because I had been meaning to read this series for a long time so when Isla and the Happily Ever After was released I thought it gave me a proper excuse to get my hands on the whole I did, read the reviews here, and I loved every single one of them. I think my favourite has to be either Anna or Isla because I loved the characters a little bit more than the ones in Lola. Although I gotta say Cricket was just so cute and the shining factor, I think in Lola. 

The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

The Rosie Project I brought because someone recommended it to me thinking that I would like it and after I had read the blurb I wholeheartedly agreed with them. It definiately sounds like my type of book. Plus it is more of an adult book which I have been reading more and more lately so I thought I would give it a go.

The Silver Lining Playbook by Matthew Quick

This one I brought because I have this rule that I cannot watch a film, if it is based on a book, before I read the book and I have dying to watch this film for a long time so I thought it would be a good time to actually buy the book. That way I can finally get round to watching the film. Plus it sounds weird but I love the film tie in cover so when I saw it in the shop I thought it was fate and brought it. I do not regret anything.

Prodigy and Champion by Marie Lu

After reading Legend I could not wait to finish the rest of the series so I immediately brought the next two books in the series and got straight to reading them. I loved this series (read the reviews here). It was so adrenaline rushed and action packed to the brim but the there was also this sweet and powerful romance that I just couldn't get enough of. 

So there you have it. All of the physical copies of books that I brought since June. Well I'm pretty sure that that is all of them. I did buy kindle books as well but if I added them in the post would go on for days and days so I think I'm just going to leave it at the physical books. 
Hope you enjoyed this week's Fickle Friday Post and I will be here next week for another.
Until next time, have fun reading!
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Thursday, 9 October 2014

The Blood of Olympus

Series: Heroes of Olympus
Written by: Rick Riordan
Published by: Puffin
Pages: 608
Purchase from: Amazon |  Book Depository

Seven heroic demigods.
One final quest.
The greatest sacrifice yet.
After battling through the underground temple of Hades, the last thing Jason wanted was to deal with more evil spirits. But the fate of the quest was at stake. The crew of the Argo II had a big decision to make.

If they choose wrong, they would fail, and the entire would would be destroyed...

My Rating: 4.5/5

I cannot believe this series is over! I seriously loved every last minute of it and I could not get enough all the shenanigans and quests these heroes went on. In Blood of Olympus we are finally shown how the main quest, that started at the very end of the Percy Jackson series, ends. All the build up and all the side quests that were taken in the previous books all add up to this one big ending that was so epic that I am so overwhelmed by the emotions I have from it.
“What if we promoted, like, Adidas shoes?’ Percy wondered. ‘Would that make Nike mad enough to show up?" 
As like the rest of the series, the humor and wit was excellent and I still can't believe how easy it is for Riordan to make his readers laugh in high pressure situations. I was constantly like 'uh oh they're in trouble again but oh geez its still so funny'. The pace was still fast and still action packed from the get-go, there was hardly room to breathe before being thrown into another adrenaline pumping problem. It was brilliant. 
“He'd gone from sixteen to seventy-five in a matter of seconds, but the old-man smell happened instantly, like boom. Congratulations! You stink!”
The only minor little thing that stopped me from giving it a full 5 rating is because for me there wasn't enough of the old characters in the book or even Hazel and Frank seemed backlogged. I mean there's seven main characters but only 3 of them are at the focus and then 3 side characters are also pushed to the forefront so I didn't really get my Percy and Annabeth fix, or my Tyson and Rachel fix, because all the attention was on Jason. Now don't get me wrong I still loved the book and I think it was a excellent end to the series, I just felt as though it was missing some of the old flair that the other books had. Plus out of the characters in Heroes of Olympus I really didn't click with Jason, as I felt as though he was slightly boring and just 'meh', and as he was one of foregrounded characters in this book I didn't really click with his parts.
“Catch that last episode of Doctor Who? Oh, right. You were trudging through the Pit of Eternal Damnation!”
To sum it up, I loved loved loved this book! It had everything to make it a perfect end to a brilliant series. While it does end slightly open and up in the air, so not everything is wrapped up neatly, its not so big of a cliffhanger that you don't walk away completely confused by the turn of events. I adore Rick Riordan's writing and how he incorporates humor into stressful and dangerous situations. It is just brilliant and I cannot stress enough how good this and the Percy Jackson series are if your looking for a thrilling and fun read. 

The Blood of Olympus (Heroes of Olympus book 5)
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Friday, 3 October 2014

The Giver

Written by: Lois Lowry
Published by: HarperCollins
Pages: 224
Purchase from: Amazon  |  Book Depository

Intelligence. Integrity. Courage. Wisdom.
These are the qualities a Reciever of Memory must have. And one more which can only be named, but not described. The Capacity to See Beyond.
Jonas lives safely within the community, a place where there is no war, no hunger and no pain. But when he is selected as the Receiver of Memory, he starts to discover dark secrets that lie beneath the surface of his perfect world. Secrets that will lead him to undertake an incredible journey...

My Rating: 4/5

The Giver focuses on the character of Jonas and his training to be the Receiver of Memories, a highly respected and honoured position in his world. I was immediately interested in the concept of this book because the idea of an alternate reality where nothing bad happens always intrigues me. However this world I found strangely gripping but also slightly boring. Don't get me wrong I really enjoyed this book but I didn't really feel as though anything really happened.
The man had sat back down in the comfortable upholstered chair. He moved his shoulders around as if to ease away an aching sensation. He seemed terribly weary. "Call me the Giver" he told Jonas
After reading the first couple of pages I fell in love with the way it was written. The compelling nature, I think came from the mystery that surrounds it. I was constantly wondering the intentions behind the elders, the people in charge, in this world. And what actually happening behind the scenes. So much so I was immediately gripped when it came to Jonas' training and him learning the secrets that are being kept from his community. Also I really enjoyed the world that it was set in, because it was so simplistic yet monumental when you think about it and it was achieved by just taking away the little things that I think are underappreciated, like colour and feelings. Having said this, I didn't really think much happened in the book apart from learning the secrets of this world. So in a weird way I was gripped but also slightly bored by the events taking place.
Jonas repeated it. "Love." It was a word and concept new to him. 
Overall I really enjoyed this book. I thought that it was a compelling and thought-provoking read that really made me appreciate the simple things. I loved the way it was written and the world that it was set in was really interesting to me. The way memories could be transferred and taken and the mystery surrounding the events really stood out as I had never read anything like it. The only downside I had to it was I didn't really think much happened it all just felt kinda uneventful to me. Having said that it was really fast paced and a quick and easy read that really got me thinking. Plus the ending of the book I really loved because it left you wanting more by leaving it slightly in the air and preparing you for the next novel. 

The Giver
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