Wednesday, 30 November 2011

25 Days of Jubilation launch


Come and join us as we celebrate the holiday season with an amazing group of bloggers! Cyndi at Dog-Eared & Bookmarked, Jacinda at The Reading Housewives, and Yani at The Secret Life of an Avid Reader are hosting the 25 Days of Jubilation December 1st-25th.

The hosts are kicking it off today with their posts and then for 25 days a different blog will post
and include a giveaway, many are international.

I will be hosting a post on Tuesday 6th December, this is a chance to share our love of the season and all the things that make this time of year so happy. I will of course be hosting a giveaway, so come by and check that out. I've got some fab prizes for you but I'm not going to tell you what they are yet, you'll have to come back on the day.
I will also be doing a post on what makes me Jubilant, most of it will be Christmas related but it will also be a chance to get to know me more. And I'm hoping to do my first ever Vlog!!! It would be great if you could come by and share some holiday love.

Follow all the wonderful bloggers taking part in this event:

Schedule:

Here's the line-up for everyone! Be sure to check each blog and enter in the giveaways!

Also, make sure you use the hashtag #25DaysofJ if you want to tweet about the event on Twitter!

Thursday, December 1st:
Christen at
Goldilox and the Three Weres

Friday, December 2nd:
Molly at
Surrounded By Words

Saturday, December 3rd:
Meridith at
Mint Tea and A Good Book

Sunday, December 4th:
Sandie at
Teen Lit Rocks

Monday, December 5th:
Shannon at
Books Devoured

Tuesday, December 6th:

Wednesday, December 7th:
Christi at
Christi the Teen Librarian

Thursday, December 8th:
Jen at
In the Closet with a Bibliophile

Friday, December 9th:
Sara O. at
The Librarian Reads

Saturday, December 10th:
Ginger at
GReads!

Sunday, December 11th:
Asheley at
Into the Hall of Books

Monday, December 12th:
Tina at
Tina’s Book Reviews

Tuesday, December 13th:
Heidi at
YA Bibliophile

Wednesday, December 14th:
Jess at
Gone with the Words

Thursday, December 15th:

Friday, December 16th:
Jen D. at
Not now…I’m Reading!

Saturday, December 17th:
Jamie at
The Perpetual Page-Turner

Sunday, December 18th:
Andrea at
The Busy Bibliophile

Monday, December 19th:
Karis at
YA Litwit & Sarah at Workaday Reads

Tuesday, December 20th:
Katelyn at
Katelyn’s Blog

Wednesday, December 21st:
Ruby at
Ruby’s Reads

Thursday, December 22nd:
Jac at
For Love and Books

Friday, December 23rd:

Saturday, December 24th:
Nikki at Books Most Wanted

Sunday, December 25th:
Merry Christmas!
 
So who's up for some Holiday Cheer!

Monday, 28 November 2011

NaNoWriMonday (4)

Word Count: 33461/50000
Day: 28/30
Genre: Children's Fantasy

Like many other bloggers, I am participating in this year's National Novel Writing Month, this will be my second time taking part. 'The Bookish Type" is hosting a NaNo meme every Monday to keep up with people's progress.

I honestly can't believe how fast November has flown by, the end of the month is almost here and whereas I'm not as far behind as I was, I've still got a lot of catching up to do. I'm starting to regret those hours of procrastination, those nights of saying "I'm too tired, I'll do it in the morning." But on the up side over the last weekend I have written about 12,000 of those words. I seem to be on a roll and I hope it lasts me until it's over.
I have enjoyed it this year, but not as much as I did last year. It seemed to be a lot harder.
I know where I want my story to go but my characters have ideas of what they want and I keep finding myself going off on a tangent, but they must know what they are doing because these changes end up so much better than what I was going to do.
I've got a couple of hours until I have to go to bed so I'm hoping to do another thousand or more words if I can as soon as I've finished here. I've also got two days off which is perfect for any last catch ups. Although I have got some places I have to go I should have some good writing time.
I actually feel confident that I can finish this for the first time all month. I'm going to keep my fingers crossed and my hopes up.


So how's it going with everyone else?


Keep writing!!!

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Book Review - Hurricane

Title: Hurricane
Author: Jenna-Lynne Duncan
Publisher: Divertir Publishing
Release Date: 11 Aug 2011
ASIN: B005H3LCA2

Synopsis
Adriana couldn’t decide what was worse—that Hurricane Katrina was heading for New Orleans, or that she might not survive her kidnapping to see its potential effects. She had trusted Hayden, even fallen for him, and now he and his brother Luke were taking her deeper and deeper into the Bayou. Why had two of her classmates, the mysterious Boudreaux brothers, kidnapped her? Why had Adriana’s dreams started predicting the future? Most importantly, would she make it out of the Bayou alive…


My Review
I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I did a release post about this book back in September with an author interview. You can read that here.
It's taken me longer than I hoped to get round to this book, not because I didn't want to read it, just life seemed to keep getting in the way. I finished it today and have to say I really enjoyed it.
It's not something I would normally have picked up to be honest but I'm glad I did, It had everything in it you could want, Love, danger, ghosts, magic, mystery and a little bit of violence.
Adriana or 'Ana' lives in New Orleans with her dad, but he's hardly ever home. There are two new boys at school, Luke and Hayden and everyone is going crazy for them, Ana tries to stay away but finds herself drawn to them. Hurricane Katrina is on it's way and a warning is out. People start evacuating, but Ana decides to stay put. That is until she is kidnapped by the mysterious brothers.
I loved the suspense of this book, it keeps you wondering who the boys really are and what they want.
The setting is incredible, and very well described, I could picture everything and felt swept away into the story. The characters come to life from the page and I felt like I had known them for years. There is a great love triangle in the book and I know who I would pick. :D
There are a lot of twists, some I really didn't expect, that kept me totally hooked.
The book is fast paced and exciting. Once I had started I wanted to know more and snatched any minute I could to dip in. 

I only wish I had read it sooner, this book was much more than I had expected.


My Rating
I would give this book 8.5/10, fast pace, thrilling and full of surprises, fabulous.

Friday, 25 November 2011

FF (45) & TGIF (28)

Follow Friday




Follow Friday is an opportunity to discover and follow other book related blogs! Want to join? Check it out at Parajunkee.

This week's question feature is from
Shanan @ The Book Addict

Q: It’s Thanksgiving Day in the U.S. so we want to know what you are Thankful for – blogging related of course! Who has helped you out along the way? What books are you thankful for reading?

My Answer: I am thankful to all my wonderful followers - thanks for sticking with me. :D

I am thankful to all the other wonderful blogs and bloggers out there, with all the support, inspiration, encouragement and awesomeness that comes with them.

There are so many bloggers I visit regularly and and very Thankful for but I'm not going to list them as they should know who they are. (if you think you are one of them then you probably are) This is in some ways a chicken out as I know I would forget someone from the list then feel guilty!!!

I will mention that I am thankful to Parajunkee for holding such an awesome meme and bringing everyone closer together.

In terms of books I am grateful for them all, of course I enjoy some books more than others, but to have the chance to hold that book in your hand (in whatever format you have it) is a blessing, one that sets our imaginations on fire, calls out to us, makes us feel. It's magical. So I'm thankful to them all.


TGIF!


This meme is hosted by GReads!


This Friday's Question:
When You're Not Reading: What occupies your time 
when your nose isn't stuck in a book?

My Answer: I'm sure I've answered this question many times in slightly different ways, but OK. My life is crazily hectic I'm amazed I have time to read at all. My time is divided between work, sports, writing, friends/family.

During the week I work 9-6 each day. Then in the evenings I go to one of these clubs: zumba, trampolining, jujitsu and high board diving. During the weekends I work one Saturday a fortnight, if I'm not at work I spend time with my family or catch up on the week's TV. This is also when I do a lot of my reading. At the moment I am doing NaNoWriMo so a lot of my spare time is taken up with that.

This weekend I have a Jewellery Party at my friends house and an extra diving session on Sunday so may fall behind even further. But it's worth it :D


Happy Hopping, have a great weekend everyone!!! 

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Guest Post: Tawny Stokes

I have a special guest with me today, the lovely Tawny Stokes. First let me introduce you to her



Tawny Stokes has always been a writer. From an early age, she’d spin tales of serial killers in love, vampires taking over the world, and sometimes about fluffy bunnies turned bunnicidal maniacs. An honour student in high school, with a penchant for math and English, you’d never know it by the foot high blue Mohawk and Doc Martens, which often got her into trouble. No longer a Mohawk wearer, Tawny still enjoys old school punk rock, trance, zombie movies, teen horror films, and fluffy bunnies. She lives in Canada with her fantastical daughter, two cats, and spends most of her time creating new stories for teens.

Tawny also writes adult paranormal/urban fantasy fiction under the name Vivi Anna, and is an aspiring screenwriter.

Now let me introduce you to her works:



Demon Whisperer
By Tawny Stokes
Genre: Paranormal YA

Awake a year-long coma, where he literally spent in hell, Caden Butcher, 17, developed a special power.  He can speak to demons in their own language.  This new trick helps him take over the family exorcism business, from his broken alcoholic father.  Having to take care of the finances, Caden makes a decent income getting rid of demons.  He’s known as the young whiz-kid exorcist to the stars, obtaining most of his work in Hollywood.  But what others don't know is the exorcisms are all staged with the help of his best buddy, a demon he met in hell named Dantalion (Dan).



When an exorcism goes wrong, Caden discovers the demon inside a teen girl is not the run of the mill malicious entity but an adversary from down under who is hell bent on Caden’s destruction.  The International Order of Exorcists, an organization that tolerates Caden at best because of his respected father, starts their own investigation because of his screw up.



Now with the help of his demon buddy, and Caden’s girlfriend Aspen Spencer, a skilled necromancer, Caden must track down the rogue demon before he can expose Caden as a fraud and destroy everything that matters to him in his life, ending his reign as the one and only Demon Whisperer.
Buy Now
YA Halloween Sale 10 spooky paranormals for $10!

Curl up on a dark night with these bewitching offerings from 10  traditionally published authors whose credits include Kindle Bestsellers, Romantic Times Top Picks, and Rita and Eppie award winners! We've served up a variety of Halloween treats, each for only $0.99 from October 15th through the 31st!

Listmania List
http://amzn.to/p8iz0R


 

STATIC
By Tawny Stokes

Genre: Paranormal YA

During the summer before her senior year, 17 year old band groupie, Salem Vale, has been following her favorite punk rockers, Malice, from gig to gig hoping that one night she might get backstage and meet the sinisterly sexy guys. She’s been saving her virginity for the lead singer Thane.  One fateful evening she gets her wish.  It’s a dream come true.



Except the dream turns to a nightmare when she wakes up in a dumpster, tossed away like yesterday’s trash, with no memory of what happened the night before. She feels strange, different, as if something is trying to get out.  Soon she realizes she’s changing…turning into something not quite human.



Now a hunger deep inside claws at her to feed, to siphon energy from those around her.  Before she can do just that, Trevor, the band’s roadie shows up and stops her from killing.  With his help she learns to control the hunger inside, because he’s just like her.  And in return he wants her help to do one little thing…



Help him kill the members of Malice.



"STATIC is an edgy, dark, and delicious read! Tawny Stokes is a tasty new voice in YA fiction." –Michelle Rowen, national bestselling author

Now for the Guest Post by Tawny Stokes featuring a character interview with the protagonists from 'Demon Whisperer'

Fast Five with Caden Butcher and Dantalion from Demon Whisperer

I’m happy to be guesting on your blog.  Today, I brought with me two characters from my new release Demon Whisperer.  Caden Butcher, exorcist to the stars, and his best friend, Grand Duke of Hell, Dantalion or Dan as he likes to be called.  His title is all proper and such but he’s really just a reckless young man at heart, who just happens to prefer to appear looking exactly like Sid Vicious.

Welcome Caden and Dan.

Caden: Hey.

Dan: Yo.  I’m hungry.  Anyone got a pizza?

Tawny: No, I’ll get you one later.

Dan: I could just zip out and snatch one.

Tawny: No, I’d prefer if you stayed here.

Caden: Dan, behave.

Dan: Whatever.

Tawny: K, I’m going to ask you five questions and you both just answer them. And remember this is PG 13, okay, Dan?

Dan: Yup, got it.

Tawny:   Who is your favourite band?

Dan: Easy. Sex Pistols.

Caden:  I like lots of different bands.  Metallica.  Rob Zombie.  Papa Roach.  Seether. Three Days Grace.

Tawny: What is your favourite food?

Dan: Easy.  Pizza.

Caden:  Pizza is top on the list, but I also like Thai food.  And chicken wings.

Dan:  Oh yeah, I love chicken wings. The hotter the better. Dude, remember those wings we had in Calgary?  Damn!  Those were almost too hot for me.

Caden: *laughing*

Tawny:  What is your favourite animal?

Caden: Cats. 


Dan: Hellhounds. The bigger and meaner the better. The kind that eat cats for breakfast.

Caden: You don’t really hate Bali that much do you?

Dan: The hell I don’t.

Tawny: Moving on.  What is your favourite movie?

Caden: Hmm, that’s a tough one.  I really like the Resident Evil movies. 


Dan:  Oh hell yeah, plus Milla Jovovich is hot!

Caden:  But I have to say, and I’ll probably get ribbed about it, but I really enjoyed the Harry Potter movies.


Dan:  Me too!  Loved them.  And that Emma Watson.  Hmm, I’d change my ways for her.

Tawny: Speaking of girls, do either of you have a girlfriend?

Caden: Yup.  Aspen Spencer.  Most beautiful awesome chick you’d ever meet. 

Dan: I thought you guys broke up.

Caden: Ah, no we didn’t.

Dan: Are you sure about that?

Caden: Yeah, I’m sure.  *drops gaze*

Tawny: What about you Dan?  Cool guy like you must have a line up of girls.

Dan: No comment.

Caden: What about Jezebel?

Dan: I said no comment. *zips out of the room like the Flash*

Tawny: Okay, that would do it.   Thanks for being here with me Caden and Dan.    If anyone has any questions for either of them, I’m sure they would be happy to answer in the comment section.

Thanks for having me.  You can read more about Caden and Dan in the Demon Whisperer.  And learn more about me at www.tawnystokes.com

Thanks for coming to my blog and for the awesome post. :D

Monday, 21 November 2011

NaNoWriMonday (3)

Word Count: 17858/50000
Day: 21/30
Genre: Children's Fantasy

Like many other bloggers, I am participating in this year's National Novel Writing Month, this will be my second time taking part. 'The Bookish Type" is hosting a NaNo meme every Monday to keep up with people's progress.

Oh my goodness, seeing  this in writing has really brought it home as to how far through the month we really are.
I have had a shockingly bad week in terms of writing. I have only done a total of 3,000 words in a whole week, that is shockingly bad!!!
I had a mammoth writing session last weekend and if you read my post last week I was more hopeful, now it feels like I'm drowning.
I knwo everyone makes excuses but I am at work 9-6 everyday then I come home, have about 40 minutes in which I eat my dinner and get changed then I go out again - I do a different sport each night and so am then out from 7-9.30 each day. When I get home I check and update my blog, check in on Facebook by which time it's 10.30 -11 and I'm exhausted. My brain just shuts off. I need to get my brain working so I can do at least a couple of hundreds words a night but it's so hard I just can't  focus.
I started taking my laptop to work so I can write in my lunch break but by the time I've got switched on and got my lunch I have about 45 minutes to write and there are so my distractions and interruptions that I don't get much done.
I am losing hope and motivation with it as I am so far behind I can't see myself catching up. I want to get back into it and complete but I honestly don't know how. Is it even possible to write 30,000 words in a week??? Can I complete.
I feel like my story could be really good if I could only get it on paper. I'm going to try this week and see where I end up by this weekend. Wish me luck.


How are you're word counts doing? Bet they make mine look dreadful.


Keep writing!!!

Book Review - Voices of Dragons

Title: Voices of Dragons
Author: Carrie Vaughn
Publisher: Harper Teen
Release Date: 15 Feb 2011
ISBN-13: 978-0061547904

Synopsis
On one side of the border lies the modern world: the internet, homecoming dances, cell phones. On the other side dwell the ancient monsters who spark humanity's deepest fears: dragons.
Seventeen-year-old Kay Wyatt knows she's breaking the law by rock climbing near the border, but she'd rather have an adventure than follow the rules. When the dragon Artegal unexpectedly saves her life, the rules are abruptly shattered, and a secret friendship grows between them.
But suspicion and terror are the legacy of human and dragon interactions, and the fragile truce that has maintained peace between the species is unraveling. As tensions mount and battles begin, Kay and Artegal are caught in the middle. Can their friendship change the course of a war? 



My Review
A colleague of mine gave me this book back in May and told me I would enjoy it, I gratefully accepted it and put it to one side and promptly forgot about it.  I renewed it so many times at the library and even had to dig it out when someone else requested it. I didn't want to give up on it so I requested it back after but still didn't read it. I checked by books on Saturday and realised this had another request on it plus it was a week late back (as staff I don't get fines but I do get told off) so I decided enough was enough and I was just going to sit down and read it. So I brushed everything else off yesterday and picked this book up. 
I can't believe it took me so long to get around to reading, it was so good, my colleague was totally right, i really did enjoy it.
Kay loves Hiking and the freedom it offers, breaking all the rules one day she goes hiking on the border - the land that separates population from the dragons. When she almost falls she gets saved by a young dragon and finds out he can talk. A friendship blossoms, but not everyone will be happy with the pairing and then the trouble starts.
This book is set in the modern world - phones, cars, internet etc all appear but it also has the old feel on the dragons side. When the two worlds collide it makes for an interesting read.
I loved Kay as a character, strong willed and a bit rash at times but caring and sweet too. The dragon Artegal is my favourite, had me wishing I could meet him, and ride him- soaring through the air. Artegal is just fabulous.
The storyline sounded like it would be confusing and hard to do but Vaughn does it really well and it makes perfect sense, I was in it immediately.
It took me about half a day to read and I really did enjoy it. 
This is Vaughns first YA novel and I love her writing style. I will be trying to get hold of some of her other books.
 

Saturday, 19 November 2011

Book Review - Magical Detectives

Title: The Magical Detectives
Author: Brian Keaney
Series: The Magical Detectives (book 1)
Publisher: Orchard
Release Date: 3 Feb 2011
ISBN-13: 978-1408306819

Synopsis
When Otto returns home from school one day to find his mother missing, and then discovers an advert for the Magical Detective Agency, he decides there's nothing for it but to call on their services. In fact, the agency is just one man, a strange character call Maximillan Hawksmoor, who becomes convinced that Otto's mother has been abducted by Elementals - beings who live in a completely different world. It's not long before Otto, plus his friend Juliet and her cat Cornelius, join Max on a strange and dangerous journey to rescue Otto's mother - in a world where anything is possible... 


My Review
This is another book that has been nominated for Children's Book of the Year with our Children's Book Group. I am reading all the shortlist first before they are given to the Children. Aimed at 8-12 year olds.
I read this in about 2 hours, it is just over 200 pages long but I actually really enjoyed it.
Otto comes up to find his mother missing, when he comes across a card advertising a magical detective agency he decides he needs all the help he can get.
Otto ends up traveling to a completely different world with Maximillian the wizard and Juliet a girl from school and her cat Cornelius. 
The pacing is good and the story flows, there is a good mixture of adventure, magic, mystery, monsters, humour and intrigue.
Cornelius is my favourite, he can 'talk' in the magic world and has a great dry sense of humour, I loved it.
I think this will be a god one for my reading group, perfect for both boys and girls, fun and gripping and just the right length.


My Rating
I would give this book 8/10. Really enjoyed it. Want to find book 2. :D
  

Friday, 18 November 2011

FF (44) & TGIF (27)

Follow Friday






Follow Friday is an opportunity to discover and follow other book related blogs! Want to join? Check it out at Parajunkee.

This week's question feature is from
Lauren’s Book Blog

Q: Letter to Santa: Tell Santa what books you want for Christmas!

My Answer: I want so many books, but I know I've already got four bought for me from my family. I really want Inheritance by Christopher Paolini, Crossed by Ally Condie, Spook's book 7& 8 by Joseph Delaney and loads more, my amazon wishlist is massive.


TGIF!


This meme is hosted by GReads!

This Friday's Question:
 

Giving Thanks: Which books are you most thankful for receiving from other bloggers, friends, family members, or publishers?

 

 My Answer: This is going to sound like I'm avoiding the question, but honestly any book I am given I am grateful for. I love to find new things and old favourites. The gift of reading is the best gift out there.

 

Happy Hopping, have a great weekend everyone!!! 

Know Me Better 17th November

"Know Me Better" is a new weekly meme hosted by I Am A Reader Not A Writer. Each week five questions are asked as a way for your readers to get to know you better. Want to play along? It's easy! Just click the link above to take you over to the host's page. From there, copy and paste the meme image into your blog along with the meme code. Link back to the host and you're done.

Here's this weeks questions:

What is something people would be surprised to know about you?
erm, I still don't know what I really want to do with my life. I always seem like I know what I'm doing - or so I've been told- but I know I haven't found IT yet, whatever that IT may be!

Beach or Pool?
Although I adore the beach I haven't been for years so Pool! I love the pool and couldn't live without it.

If you had 24 hours alone how would you spend it?
Catching up on some TV, read some books and do some writing.

Coke or Pepsi?
Neither - I don't drink fizzy drinks only fruit juice/squash

If a movie was made about your life, who would you want to play the lead role and why?
Abilgail Breslin - she is such an amazing actress and I think she could do it justice. I would be honoured if she played me.


FYI - There will not be a Know Me Better Post next week since it is Thanksgiving.  We'll resume on Dec. 1st.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Farsighted Blog Tour & Review

Title: Farsighted
Author: Emlyn Chand
Publisher: Blue Crown Press
Release Date: 17 Oct 2011

Synopsis
Alex Kosmitoras's life has never been easy. The only other student who will talk to him is the school bully, his parents are dead-broke and insanely overprotective, and to complicate matters even more, he's blind. Just when he thinks he'll never have a shot at a normal life, a new girl from India moves into town. Simmi is smart, nice, and actually wants to be friends with Alex. Plus she smells like an Almond Joy bar. Yes, sophomore year might not be so bad after all.
Unfortunately, Alex is in store for another new arrival--an unexpected and often embarrassing ability to "see" the future. Try as he may, Alex is unable to ignore his visions, especially when they begin to suggest that Simmi is in danger. With the help of the mysterious psychic next door and new friends who come bearing gifts of their own, Alex must embark on a journey to change his future. 


My Review
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
I was sent an extract of this book first to see if I would like it and I have to admit I was immediately drawn into the story, so I accepted a copy and put it on my TBR list.
Alex was born blind, it's all he knows and he has his own way of 'seeing', when things start to get even weirder in his life Alex discovers he has 'second sight' - irony!
I was intrigued by Alex and felt like I understood him as a character, the way he survives in every day life and events that are thrown against him. Losing my sight is one of my biggest fears, but Alex copes really well.
Simmi is a great character, shy and sweet but will stand up for herself if needed.
The pair also make a new friend, when a Psychic moves to town and opens shop - her daughter Shapri comes to and the pair become friends with her.
Alex's visions were really intriguing and it was like solving a mystery. My heart was in my mouth at points in this book.
The pacing is good and I found myself reading more and more pages, even if I sat down thinking I had 10 minutes to read, I would end up sitting there for at least half hour.
The ending doesn't really close the story but leaves it open for the next book, but in a good way, as you do get a sort of conclusion to this story in this book but open so you know it goes further. I hope you understand what I mean there.
Anyway - this is a book with a difference, I haven't read anything liek this before and I loved it - a mix of powers, contempory, romance, with a hint/feeling of magic.

My Rating
I would give this book 10/10. I can't wait for book 2, I want to know more. 

Blog Tour

THE AUTHOR:  Emlyn Chand has always loved to hear and tell stories, having emerged from the womb with a fountain pen grasped firmly in her left hand (true story). When she’s not writing, she runs a large book club in Ann Arbor and is the president of author PR firm, Novel Publicity. Emlyn loves to connect with readers and is available throughout the social media interweb. Visit www.emlynchand.com for more info. Don’t forget to say “hi” to her sun conure Ducky!

THE BOOK:  Alex Kosmitoras may be blind, but he can still “see” things others can’t.  When his unwanted visions of the future begin to suggest that the girl he likes could be in danger, he has no choice but to take on destiny and demand it reconsider. Get your copy today by visiting Amazon.com’s Kindle store or the eBook retailer of your choice. The paperback edition will be available on November 24 (for the author’s birthday).  

THE CASH PRIZES:  Guess what? You could win a $100 Amazon gift card as part of this special blog tour. That’s right! Just leave a comment below saying something about the post you just read, and you’ll be entered into the raffle. I could win $100 too! Please help by voting for my blog in the traffic-breaker poll. To cast your vote, visit the official Farsighted blog tour page and scroll all the way to the bottom. Thank you for your help with that.  

THE GIVEAWAYS:  Win 1 of 10 autographed copies of Farsighted before its paperback release by entering the giveaway on GoodReads. Perhaps you’d like an autographed postcard from the author; you can request one on her site.  

MORE FUN: There's more fun below. Watch the live action Farsighted book trailer.
 







Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Book Review - Pillywiggins & The Tree Witch

Title: Pillywiggins & The Tree Witch
Author: Julia Jarman
Publisher: Andersen
Release Date: 4 April 2011
ISBN-13: 978-1849390187

Synopsis
When Natasha moves to a new house, she discovers a statue of a fairy in her garden beneath a huge menacing fir tree, which Natasha is sure is a witch. Gradually, with the help of a local boy, she unravels an ancient story that fairies stole the witch’s baby and as revenge she turned a fairy to stone. Natasha realizes that the only way to free the stone fairy, Pillywiggins, is to go into Fairy Land herself and rescue the witch’s baby. But legend says that any human who enters Fairy Land may age decades or never come out at all.

My Review
This is another book that has been nominated for Children's Book of the Year with our Children's Book Group. I am reading all the shortlist first before they are given to the Children. Aimed at 8-12 year olds.
This book is so short, it is 115 pages, but the writing is big and there are illustrations every 6 or so pages. I read the entire thing i about 35 minutes. It would be perfect for kids that like reading but aren't too confident yet.
Natasha moves to a new house, it overlooks an old garden when a big spooky tree takes up most of the space, to Tasha it looks like the tree has a face - a twisted scary face like a witch and below the tree is a statue of an elf. When Tasha meets a boy at school he tells her a story about how the fairies stole the witches baby and so she turned it to stone as revenge.
The fairies name is Pillywiggins and Tasha decides to help free her, but to do so she must journey into the Fairy world, but legend says if you go into fairy you won't come back.
I thought the idea of the book was good but it seemed a bit rushed with only basic details thrown in. I don't know if she had a maximum word count she had to stick to but it was very basic. However saying that it did make it easy to read and there was enough to give you a feel of the story.
Obviously I'm used to longer more complex books, but this could really work well with children as a quick read. None of my book group will have an excuse not to read it, but I have to wonder if it's a bit too simple for them. We'll have to wait and see.
Overall for me it was a good story but too short and simple, but for the right age group- young girls who like fairies it will be perfect. I think it would suit 6 years and up. 

My Rating
In terms of my enjoyment of this book I would give it 6/10 but rating it in regards of it's intended audience, then it works well and so would give it 8/10. Add this to Christmas lists if you have a child between 6-9, especially girls.     

Book Review - The Time Of My Life

Title: The Time Of My Life
Author: Cecelia Ahern
Publisher: HarperCollins
Release Date: 13 Oct 2011
ISBN-13: 978-0007350438

Synopsis
Lying on Lucy Silchester’s carpet one day when she returns from work is a gold envelope. Inside is an invitation – to a meeting with Life. Her life. It turns out she's been ignoring it and it needs to meet with her face to face.
It sounds peculiar, but Lucy’s read about this in a magazine. Anyway, she can’t make the date: she’s much too busy despising her job, skipping out on her friends and avoiding her family.
But Lucy’s life isn’t what it seems. Some of the choices she’s made – and stories she’s told – aren’t what they seem either. From the moment she meets the man who introduces himself as her life, her stubborn half-truths are going to be revealed in all their glory – unless Lucy learns to tell the truth about what really matters to her.
Lucy Silchester has an appointment with her life – and she’s going to have to keep it.

My Review
I have read every single one of Cecelia Ahern's books and I love her writing style. I love her elements of mystery and a sort of magic. One of my favourite books is 'A Place Called Here' so when I heard there was a new book by Ahern coming out I had to read it. I was top of the request list at the library (and it's a big list!!!) I knew I would have to read it quite fast, but knew it wouldn't be a problem. I love her books so could get it read in a couple of days.
Lucy's life has gone downhill, she broke up with her boyfriend of five years, lost her gorgeous apartment, lost her job and got a new one that she hates where she nicknames all the staff and sneaks out for as many breaks as possible. She spends her time trying to avoid family and friends and hides away in her box of an apartment. One day she gets an invite for a meeting with Life - her life. It's time she stopped ignoring her life and started living it.
This book was very odd - Life personified is just weird - but it's a weird that works. I was absolutely fascinated. I liked Lucy as a character - she was sassy and had a great with. Her life is great, I actually laughed out loud so many times whilst he was talking.
This story will sweep you away but at the same time will have you thinking about your own life and where it's going. And what he/she would look like if it was personified.
I love the strangeness of it all and it's overall originality. Ahern charms and intrigues with her writing. I was hooked in and couldn't wait to find out what would happen. 
There is a bit of a love triangle but in my opinion it's very one sided - I knew who I liked and was shouting at Lucy to be sensible and pick him (I won't say who - it might spoil it for you)
It hasn't overtaken as my favourite one of hers but it's quite high up the list.


My Rating
I would give this book 9/10. Original, exciting and heart-felt.