The Rest of Us Just Live Here (Review #83)

The Rest of Us Just Live HereToday’s book is The Rest of Us Just Live Here:

Author: Patrick Ness (AKA the Holy God of Writing)

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Summary: What if you aren’t the Chosen One?

The one who’s supposed to fight the zombies, or the soul-eating ghosts, or whatever the heck this new thing is, with the blue lights and the death?

What if you’re like Mikey? Who just wants to graduate and go to prom and maybe finally work up the courage to ask Henna out before someone goes and blows up the high school. Again.

Because sometimes there are problems bigger than this week’s end of the world, and sometimes you just have to find the extraordinary in your ordinary life.

Even if your best friend is worshipped by mountain lions.

This is one of the current shortlisted Carnegie Books for 2016.

Okay, so Patrick Ness (Basically, my YA King.) is an author of whom a reader can never go wrong. EVER. This book wasn’t my favourite of his – but I loved it. I will rue the day that I hate a book of his.

The book – whilst bizarre – was beautiful. It felt so close to real life. Almost.

Mikey, the main protagonist, was sometimes quite hateable (but to me, who isn’t occasionally annoying?), but mostly, he was great. I loved the way that Ness tackled issues like with Mikey, and Mel, but almost in a humorous way, where we laughed with the characters, not at them.

Jared. The place where Jared was created for this novel, is my idea of Heaven. I need him as a very close friend – the way he cared for Mikey, was insanely amazing.

Ness’ development of characters and plot was spot-on, and I loved the touch of the beginning of the chapters having what ‘normal books’ would have. Also, the small, but noticeable digs at certain traits, or genres of YA books (Vampires, Demigods, Zombies) always managed to make me laugh.

Overall, I really loved this book, and I would recommend it to anyone who loves either humorous parodies, or big franchises – as it showed me what a truly unique book looks like. (Apparently, it has to have blue pages. 😉 )




Fire Colour One (Review #82)

Fire Colour OneToday’s book is Fire Colour One:

Author: Jenny Valentine

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Summary: A teenage girl will soon discover, there are some things which burn even brighter than fire.

Iris’s father Ernest is at the end of his life.

Her best friend Thurston seems like a distant memory to her.

Her mother has declared war. She means to get her hands on Ernest’s priceless art collection so that she can afford to live the high life.

But Ernest has other ideas.

There are things he wants Iris to know. Things he can tell her and things that must wait till he’s gone. What she does after that is up to her.

This is one of the current Carnegie Books shortlisted for 2016.

I enjoyed this book, with it’s writing, and consistently attractive plot line. The ‘pyromaniac’ aspect of the book was extremely intriguing, and actually really unique, from what I’ve read. Additionally, I found the character building between Ernest and Iris very well-written, and I found that as the reader, you were able to build the images of the characters, at the same time as inter-character building, as they had only just truly met.

Valentine’s writing drew me in instantly, and from there I was hooked. My only issue is that I couldn’t make my mind up whether I would aim this book towards people my age, or whether it was for that age of slightly younger than YA, but older than kiddie books.

Overall, I would say that it is an intriguing book, with great, unusual concepts, and a great ending which I enjoyed.


Front Lines (Review #80)

Front LinesToday’s book is Front Lines:

Author: Michael Grant

Series: #1 in the Soldier Girl Series

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Summary: 1942. The fate of the world rests on a knife’s edge. And the soldiers who can tip the balance . . . are girls.

Set in an alternate World War II where young women are called up to fight alongside men, this is the story of Rio Richlin and her friends as they go into battle against Hitler’s forces.

But not everyone believes that they should be on the front lines. Now Rio and her friends must fight not only to survive, but to prove their courage and ingenuity. Because the fate of the world is in the hands of the soldier girls.

I received this book for review from Netgalley, and Maximum Pop for an honest review.

So, this book was AH-MAZE-ING. All the gore and violence that I needed, but all the romance, or friendships too. The plot line was so integrated that I forgot that I was reading different people’s stories. The concept is absolutely brilliant, and this book showcases some real kick-ass characters.

I tell you what, it felt a little bit too long when holding  the book, and you have to read at least halfway through to find the ‘War’ part, but I liked that Michael took his time to develop the characters, and their backgrounds.

Not only did Michael Grant represent the women who did actually fight in World War II, he took the opportunity to represent different people too:

Rio Richlin lost her sister to war. Jenou Captain doesn’t get on with her parents who drink. Rainy Schulterman is a Jewish girl. Frangie Marr is a black girl.

All of these characters have a backstory that affects their roles in society, but Grant has a particular way of making them unique, yet so similar.

Also, I really have a few things that need to be cleared up in the next book – Rio’s love life, and Aryeh’s baby. These two are things that I NEED to see, as they’re the two things that I want to know about now, other than who the mysterious narrator of ‘everything’ is.

Overall, a well-written, inspiring read that really opens your mind up to the world of war, and how it affects people.

This Raging Light (Review #79)

This Raging LightToday’s book is This Raging Light:

Author: Estelle Laure

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Summary: How is it that one day Digby was my best friend’s cute twin brother, and then the next he stole air, gave jitters, twisted my insides up?

And with Mom gone, bills to pay and Wren to look after… Why does the best thing happen at the worst time?

So, I received this as an eARC from Netgalley, so thank you for that.

You start off feeling awful for Lucille, and Wrenny, for everything happening, and yet as the book continued, I found myself conflicted as to whether I was reading a conflicted family story, or a romance.

The book seems to flit between the two (not that I’m complaining), but it felt  slightly confusing at times).

That said, Estelle’s writing was so easy to read, and the words seemed to jump off of my Kindle and straight into my imagination.

You start to feel really connected to Lucille, as a girl who needs to support her sister, and live her own life, she rules it.

Overall, I quite liked this book, and I found it quite refreshing, and a good, easy read for people who love a bit of fluffy romance, or dysfunctional families.

Gabriel and The Swallows (Review #78)

Gabriel and the SwallowsToday’s book is Gabriel and The Swallows:

Author: Esther Dalseno

Series: #1 in the Volatile Duology

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Summary: Loner farm boy Gabriel Laurentis has secrets of his own. In his daily life, he’s the ugly, badly bullied son of peasant winemakers, with no friends and a disabled mother he’s ashamed of. At night, however, when Gabriel descends into his dream world; a grandiose, gorgeous existence that is the opposite of his waking life, it becomes so vivid he’s beginning to confuse the two.

Gabriel’s life is changed forever one fateful night when he rescues a wounded creature from the shotgun of his family’s enemy: the dangerous Gallo, owner of the region’s largest vineyard, and longtime enemy of his family. At the discovery of what the creature really is – a miraculous little girl with swallow’s wings, an unbreakable bond forms between the children.

Aided by the mysterious and beautiful foreigner Orlando Khan, Gabriel struggles to protect the girl from the world, but questions haunt him: is the foundling really who she says she is? Who is the Dark One that lives in the medieval tunnels beneath their city, or is he just a figment of Gabriel’s imagination? And is the girl’s condition merely a mutation of nature, or something much more sinister?

Wrestling with manhood, Gabriel encounters mysteries as old as blood and bone, of ancient rites and foreign lands, and must make a deadly decision that changes the course of life as he knows…if he can tell which reality he’s in, that is. 

I received this book for an honest review from Of Tomes Publishing.

WOW. I literally finished this book seconds ago, and it’s like a haze in my brain, distracting me from reality. A good haze. That haze that welcomes you, wrapping you up in a literary worlds when reading a really good book.

The pandemonium within this book felt strangely organised, yet connected my imagination perfectly to the novel.

Each time that I felt I understood Gabriel, and his motives, I totally wouldn’t because something would happen, and Dalseno’s words would twist the world yet again.

It’s so beautifully written, and I was always intrigued by the concepts; Italy, Growing Up and all sorts of other things. The characters were so well-written that I started to hate them, just like everyone has a reason to hate each person in life. In jealousy, or pure hatred.

Gabriel loved his dreams, and I can see why, walking away from Dalseno’s way with words. He should’ve just read this book, and he’d be perfectly at home. 😉

To be perfectly honest, if I said anymore, I think I’d ruin this book, as you really need to go in blind with this one.

Side Note: Thank you to Dalseno for resurrecting my love for ABBA through this book. I really enjoyed listening to ABBA’s Gold Hits at certain points during this one. 😉

Will Grayson, Will Grayson (Review #77)

Will Grayson, Will GraysonToday’s book is Will Grayson, Will Grayson:

Authors: John Green and David Levithan

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Summary: One cold night, in a most unlikely corner of Chicago, two strangers cross paths. Two teens with the same name, running in two very different circles, suddenly find their lives going in new and unexpected directions, culminating in heroic turns-of-heart and the most epic musical ever to grace the high-school stage.

Favourite Quotes: “I feel like my life is so scattered right now. Like it;s all the small pieces of paper, and someone’s turned on the fan.”

“Stop thinking about the landing, because it’s all about the falling.”

Well, this was a good book. I found it slightly slow at times, but only because there was a lot to take in. Whilst Tiny brought the whole thing together, I found that the Wills were varyingly annoying. I mean, the story line was cool. But, really? I found myself wanting to rip their heads off at one point or another, (and I’m not a violent person, really.)

A lack of capitalisation on one Will’s part hurt my brain. Yes, I know it was meant to differentiate the two authors. Did it help me? NO.

Oh, but the overall feeling when I closed that book – a warm, fuzzy feeling you get when you’re too attached to the characters. That nice warmth that shows you enjoyed the book. That’s why I read. To get that. And, if others can’t see that, in any book they’ve read, they just haven’t found their type yet.


New World: Rising (Review #76)

New World - RisingToday’s book is New World: Rising:

Author: Jennifer Wilson

Series: #1 in the New World Series

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Summary: Since witnessing her parents’ murders at the age of eleven, Phoenix’s only purpose in life has been to uphold her mother’s dying words- to be strong and survive. But surviving outside of The Walls- outside of The Sanctuary- is more like a drawn-out death sentence. A cruel and ruthless city, Tartarus is run by the Tribes whose motto is simple, “Join or die.”

Refusing to join and determined to live, Phoenix fights to survive in this savage world. But who can she trust, when no one can be trusted? Not even herself.

Favourite Quote: “At first I thought we were too late, that I would never get to meet the girl who had so quickly stolen my heart, but then you woke up.”

I received this book for an honest review from the publisher: Of Tomes.

So, this book is totally flawless.

  • Amazing storyline. Check.
  • Set in a Dystopian World. Check.
  • Perfect character development. Check.
  • Triven. Check.
  • Realistic Setting. Check.
  • Stunning New Cover. Check.
  • A Freaking Map. Check.
  • Tribe Info. Check.
  • Great Pace. Check.

Not only does it have these things, but the character development for ALL characters was great, and you find yourself believing that these characters might as well be sat in front of you right now.

The beautiful Tribe Info (I assume, from the diary mentioned?) at the start really allows you to have an idea of the setting before you even start.

TRIVEN. The best guy ever. My God, does he sound amazing. Why isn’t he real? Okay, so he is like if you put all your favourite guys into one, then scrapped that idea, because Triven was there instead. Kind, Caring, Understanding. Need I say more?

To be truly honest, I feel like I did need more Arden, seeing as he kinda dropped off after a while. Oh, and Maddox. What is going on with that guy? Bipolar. But great. Ish.

The pace of the book was perfect, fast enough for me to be hooked, but slow enough for me to take in the entire story.

One final thing, WHAT WAS THE ENDING? The next book comes out who knows when, and I’m sat here dying of emotions. Give me the next book. NOW. Oh, and the sneak peek at the end? Doesn’t help right now.

Heir of Fire (Review #75)

Heir of Fire

Today’s book is Heir of Fire:

Author: Sarah J Maas

Series: #3 in the Throne of Glass Series

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Summary: Consumed by guilt and rage, Celaena can’t bring herself to spill blood for the King of Adarlan. She must fight back…

The Immortal Queen will help her destroy the king – for a price. But as Celaena battles with her darkest memories and her heart breaks for a love that could never last, can she fulfil the bargain and head the almighty court of Terrasen? And who will stand with her?

Well, this book was amazing. After you thought you had a grip on Celaena and this series, it came back to bite you. The character development shown is absolutely phenomenal, you really see each character become their own.

I don’t normally like books with many points of view, and too many things going on, which this definitely had, but it made it more real in a sense, showing how different people can think opposite things at exactly the same moment. It really gave an overall show of what Celaena is capable of bringing out of people – and how the world the books are set in works.

To put it lightly, this series is stunning. You will be drawn in right from the start – then weave about a complex, but enthralling labyrinth of plot lines. Don’t be surprised when the storyline changes in an instant, and expect to feel a lot of emotions for different characters.

This book is just like the others: a book that will keep you on your toes until the very end, and I think that Sarah J Maas is a very talented writer, with extreme abilities to create worlds.

I would definitely recommend this to anyone willing to be absorbed into a hefty series that may well change their literary preferences forever.


The Sky Is Everywhere (Review #74)

The Sky Is EverywhereToday’s book is The Sky Is Everywhere:

Author: Jandy Nelson

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

Summary: Lennie Walker, seventeen, Wuthering Heights obsessed, clarinet player, band geek. Also, hopeless romantic, prone to scattering poems all over town, and as of four weeks ago – sisterless…. 

Okay, so this book was kind of a disappointment to me. My best friend and many others raved about this book, telling how amazing it was, and how the writing was flawless. The poems were inspiring and whatnot.

But, it really wasn’t. It wasn’t entertaining. I found myself feeling stuck in someone else’s boring life, with no chance to escape. Not something I want.

Yes, the writing was good, but almost TOO perfect. Too elaborate. Okay, I consider myself sometimes well-spoken, but this was very pristine.

The concept, not my type. I mean, really? Girl hides poems, falls in love with two guys, whilst giving the excuse of grieving for her sister. Just don’t.

I found certain points very gripping, and an escape from this book seemed to be nearing the end as I zoomed through pages. Then, I hit a bit where I sat for ages, wondering what the heck was going on. Wondering whether it was worth it.

Not only that, but I felt that the author was pushing to get as many memorable quotes within there as possible, and some of them were beautiful, and others – tacky.

But, that cover is stunning, and I do love it. I mean, the poems were quite beautiful as well, but I found some of them a bit strange.

Overall, a book that I suppose I’d recommend to people who are obsessed with weird romances, and awkward contemporaries, but it just wasn’t my thing.

Take Back The Skies (Review #73)

Take Back the Skies

Today’s book is Take Back The Skies:

Author: Lucy Saxon

Series: Take Back The Skies Series #1

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Summary: Catherine Hunter is the daughter of a senior government official on the island of Anglya.

She’s one of the privileged – she has luxurious clothes, plenty to eat, and is protected from the Collections which have ravaged families throughout the land. But Catherine longs to escape the confines of her life, before her dad can marry her off to a government brat and trap her forever.

So Catherine becomes Cat, pretends to be a kid escaping the Collections, and stows away on the skyship Stormdancer. As they leave Anglya behind and brave the storms that fill the skies around the islands of Tellus, Cat’s world becomes more turbulent than she could ever have imagined, and dangerous secrets unravel her old life once and for all . . .

OMG. This book is AMAZING. I cried. Many times. Profusely.

I do feel like a minority, as Goodreads has so many bad reviews for this book. But, I loved it. After meeting Lucy at YALC 2015 as well, and one of my friends practically forcing the book into my recommendations, I knew that I had to pick up this book. I’m glad I did.

Everyone says this book was very standard, and dull, but all I saw was this amazing world flourishing inside my mind, with beautiful description and a great plot line.

The ending. I mean, really? Kill my feelings much? Thanks. Many tissues are needed. Everyone finds the epilogue pretty bad, and I have to agree, it is a flaw within the writing. I hated it. But just before that? Well played, Lucy.

But, for such a young author, Lucy Saxon looks to be a very promising author, that I will be keeping my eyes out for. From what I’ve seen, there will be companion books set within the same world, which I’m not quite sure about, as I would’ve preferred others within the same characters.

Overall, an amazingly written book which you should DEFINITELY check out, by an author who is now going to be one of my auto-buy authors, and she was so lovely when I met her.