Wednesday, 24 February 2016

Review: What I Thought Was True - Huntley Fitzpatrick

Written by: Huntley Fitzpatrick
Published by: Speak
Edition: Paperback
Pages: 410
Purchase From: Amazon  |  Book Depository

Gwen's whole life is about to change.

Gwen Castle comes from a long line of fisherman and housecleaners who support Seashell Island's summer visitors, and she expects her life to go the same way.
But then she discovers that Cassidy Somers - also known as her Biggest Mistake Ever - is working on the island for the season. And though she tries to avoid him, fate keeps pushing them together.

Sparks fly and secrets are revealed as Gwen spends a gorgeous, restless summer struggling to resolve what she was true - about her life, herself, and the people she loves - with what really is.

I will always have a special place in my heart for Huntley Fitzpatrick's writing. Her first book My Life Next Door was the first book I ever reviewed so its like a need for me to review her other books, which is what I find myself doing today after finishing What I Thought was True in just one sitting. While I find Huntley's writing simple and sweet you can always expect an emotional punch that can knock you off your feet and come from the smallest and unexpected of places, this sort of writing was definitely not lost in What I Thought Was True. 
“That what you’ve always had doesn’t mean that’s what you’ll always get. That what you’ve always wanted isn’t what you’ll always want.”
Even though the writing style was completely perfect, I felt as that there was something in the narrative that was lacking. It was bugging me throughout the entirety, that something did not feel quite right, but I could not narrow it down, until it finally sparked in my brain that the actual romance part of the story was not packing the punches like I expected it too. I loved the family aspect, just like her first novel the family relationships shone throughout the pages it a totally special and warming way, but the relationship between Gwen and Cas felt slightly rushed and forced. It just didn't flow as well as I thought it would. Now that's not to say I didn't think the characters were cute but to me the family side of the story, once again, took centre stage, while the romance faded slightly in the background.
“I remember...watching that separation of sea and sky...and for the first time I realize that none of us are seeing the same thing. That all our horizons end in different places.”
All in all, What I Thought Was True really shines as a sweet summer read that does tie you in knots emotionally, just not in the way you would expect. While the relationship is all kinds of cute, the family is what really pulls you in. I got all types of tangled in their storyline and they are really what made me respect and connect with the characters. They projected a type of realism that is sometimes hard to find in books and really kept the characters and the narrative grounded. Once again Huntley Fitzpatrick really nailed it with this novel, because while the family pulled me in, the story is what kept me interested. If there could of been a little more development with the relationship to keep it from felling slightly rushed this story would of been a full five stars.
What I Thought Was True
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Friday, 19 February 2016

Review: Firefight by Brandon Sanderson

Written by: Brandon Sanderson
Published by: Gollancz
Edition: Paperback
Pages: 416
Purchase from: Amazon  |  Book Depository

They told David it was impossible; that even the Reckoners had never killed a High Epic. Yet, Steelheart - invincible, immortal, unconquerable - is dead. And he died by David's hand.
Eliminating Steelheart was supposed to make life more simple. Instead, it only made David realize he has more questions. Big ones. And there's no one in Newcago who can give him the answers he needs.
Babylon Restored, the former borough of Manhattan, has possibilities, though. Ruled by the mysterious High Epic, Regalia, David is sure Babylon Restored will lead him to what he needs.
Entering another city oppressed by a High Epic despot is a gamble but David's willing to risk it. Because killing Steelheart left a hole in David's heart. A hole where his thirst for vengeance once lived.

After reading Steelheart, I fell madly in love with everything and anything that was involved in this story. It rose to the top of my favourite series list and settled itself with, my opinion of, the all time greats. So you can probably guess the levels of excitement, I had when it came to reading the second instalment, Firefight. Though I cannot lie that it took a long time coming in terms of reading this story, but that was mainly down to the fact that I could not kick my reading slump, where it needed to kicked, so everything was pushed back. Yet, when the crappiest of days spurred me into buying this novel, I was overjoyed with the fact that I could feel my excitement to read building and when I finally got my hands on it, the momentum just kept going, spurring me on to finish the entire story in just one day. It was that brilliant. With my reading slump vanquished and my love of reading restored I knew just what I had to do next and that was too review this novel.
“I mixed with ordinary people about the same way that a bucket of paint mixed with a bag of gerbils.”
Firefight picks off after the first book and the novella, Mitosis, living in Newcago has changed dramatically without Epics to rule over them and Reckoners to protect them it is almost as though Calamity never happened. David is idolised by the people, the story of him killing Steelheart has spread like wildfire, everywhere he goes people either respect him or are scared of him. But David feels lost and confused due to him completely his revenge he is left wondering what he is to do know. Firefight is him discovering his new purpose and putting the pieces together of an even bigger war. 
“You can’t immerse yourself in something,” Prof said softly, “without coming to respect it.”
If you've read Steelheart and are wondering if any of the characters have become any less brilliant, the answer is a resounding no. They are still perfect and if anything the characters, new and old, have developed immensely whilst still being the very thing that drew you in within the first story. As always with Brandon Sanderson, there is always hidden gems that sparkle between the pages, David for me just happens to be one of them. He is still vividly sarcastic with his cute little obsession with metaphors, but he has this new sort of maturity that just adds that little something. But as well as David, I also fell in love with Mizzy in this story. As a newcomer to the story she had a lot to live up, like all the new characters, and she did not disappoint. She was just a big bundle of positivity that really lightened up the pages. 
“We want what we can’t have, even when we have no right to demand it.”
In conclusion, the expectations that I had with this novel was extremely high and Firefight really did not disappoint. It not only lived up to the expectations but smashed right through them. As much as I want to delve into the legendary narrative that surrounds this story, I can't because otherwise I would not be able to stop. So just know that, the story itself was just as intense, just as impeccable as its predecessors and the characters defied their formidable personalities by becoming even more awesome. Seriously this series just captivates me and I am counting down the days until I can read Calamity, and witness just how this epicness, that this narrative holds, can grow once again. 

Firefight (Reckoners, #2)
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