Favourites Friday #1: INKHEART and the Perils of Book Borrowing

I meant to post this earlier but I went to see The Great Gatsby which was…hmm meh. OK maybe it was better than meh, I’ll raise that to stunning but a bit…ambiguous (and long). But anyway,  as I’m sort of new to this whole blogging thing but not at all new to reading, I have so many favourite books on my shelves that I probably won’t get round to actually reviewing but those books are the reason why I wanted to start a book blog…because I want to gush about them all the damn time.

So I give life to Favourites Friday where each week (don’t hold me to that) I’m going rant/gush about one of my favourite books, series, author or just a particular edition/cover.

First up:  The Inkheart Trilogy by Cornelia Funke.

Everything about these books are magical. I was first introduced to Inkheart by Di (who is awesome and takes awesome photos, and blogs here) who told me I would love it and thrust her copy into my greedy mitts! And obviously, she was right. I did love it and I still do.

Inkheart has everything I love in a book. It has magic, and mystery, action and adventure, a loveable protagonist in Meggie and despicable, dangerous villians like Capricorn. It is also a kind of love letter to books themselves and also to family; at its core is a beautiful father/daughter story.

The only bad thing about borrowing books is that you have to give them back. And if you truly love that book it can be difficult. Sure, you can buy your own copy, but you’ve just read it, so if you’re anything like me and don’t have that much cash lying around it can seem a bit wasteful buying a book that you’ve just read. I had one of these moments giving Inkheart back to Di. The edition she gave me was this one…

From Goodreads - Click to view.

From Goodreads – Click to view.

In the end, giving it back wasn’t so hard because I took the next book Inkspell in exchange. Whilst I was reading Inkspell the final book was released and I needed it! I can’t remember whether Di hadn’t bought it yet or had but hadn’t read it yet, but either way, she didn’t have a copy for me so I bought the shiny new hardback which was so pretty I’m sure I would have noticed it even if I’d never seen the other two.

From Goodreads - Click to view

From Goodreads – Click to view

The picture doesn’t really do it justice, and the pages inside are equally as magical. So now what, I have a hardback edition of the last book in a trilogy and not the other two. I don’t know about you, but that didn’t sit well with me. Every time I looked at it on my bookshelf it annoyed me so you won’t be too surprised that I set out to buy the other two. Obviously, being slightly weird about books as I’m sure I’ve already demonstrated, I was going to get the other two in hardback to match Inkdeath. Until that is, I saw the Gift Editions. Oh My God they are beautiful. Once again the picture doesn’t really do it justice but the embossed gold art work is divine. DIVINE. Epic, let’s say.

Inkheart

I only bought the first two in this edition which I regret now as I haven’t been able to find an Inkdeath one since. I mean, I love my copy of Inkdeath…but it would be nice to have a proper set. PERILOUS!

I’d love to hear about one of your favourite books on your shelf!

The Inkheart Trilogy is published by Chicken House.

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WWW Wednesdays!

My first ever WWW Wednesdays post! Happy Wednesday Everyone!

www_wednesdays4

To play along, just answer the following three (3) questions…

• What are you currently reading?
• What did you recently finish reading?
• What do you think you’ll read next?

Currently Reading:

7962513 – Bitterblue by Krisitn Cashore. I loved the other two books in this series. I’m sad that it’s coming to an end. Start with Graceling. Also…the covers are SO pretty and kick ass.

Recently Read:
Soulless – Soulless by Gail Carriger. I really liked this in the end, it made me do a few LOLs. Read my review here.

Next Up:
7741325 – Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan. These two also collaborated on Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist which I read for the first time recently and loved. So I have high hopes for this one too.

The Verdict: Soulless – Gail Carriger

Cheap clothing is no excuse for killing a man! Click to view on Goodreads

Cheap clothing is no excuse for killing a man!
Click to view on Goodreads

Synopsis: First, she has no soul. Second, she’s a spinster whose father is both Italian and dead. Third, she was rudely attacked by a vampire, breaking all standards of social etiquette.

Where to go from there? From bad to worse apparently, for Alexia accidentally kills the vampire – and then the appalling Lord Maccon (loud, messy, gorgeous, and werewolf) is sent by Queen Victoria to investigate.

With unexpected vampires appearing and expected vampires disappearing, everyone seems to believe Alexia responsible. Can she figure out what is actually happening to London’s high society? Will her soulless ability to negate supernatural powers prove useful or just plain embarrassing? Finally, who is the real enemy, and do they have treacle tart?

As I mentioned before, I don’t really know anything about Steampunk. Other than the fact that it’s everywhere at the moment, I like the clothes but would never be able to pull it off and that there seems to be a whole lot of what I can only describe as gold binocular type goggles and mechanical Blimps, or Glassicles and Dirigibles as I now know them to be (see, learning). That being said, I actually really enjoyed that element of the story. It brought a new dimension to your average ‘Paranormal Romance’ genre.

Soulless is basically a sort of Victorian mystery-cum-paranormal-romance in which Miss Alexia ‘I’m the one with no soul’ Tarabotti accidentally kills a feral, unregistered vampire with her parasol. Oh, how very uncouth! This results in her spending more time with Lord Maccon of BUR – The Bureau of Unnatural Registration – whose job it is to investigate such improper occurrences. Chaos and an unlikely romance ensues. Obviously.

After the initial LOLs from the almost farcical “Victorian” language Carriger uses,(can you image a vampire saying ‘she is trying to make a funny’? No, me neither) there’s actually a lot to like in this book. Lord Maccon for one. Hot, Scottish (‘of all barbaric places’) Werewolf type who I like to picture as Simon from Biffy Clyro:

Simon 'Sexy Jesus' Neil AKA Lord Maccon.

Simon ‘Sexy Jesus’ Neil AKA Lord Maccon.

AND we later come across a character named Biffy! Coincidence? I think not!

The fact that pale girls with some flesh on their bones are the desirable ones is also a confidence booster, good work Victorians. And well , it’s all pretty funny really. I’m still not entirely sure if I was laughing at it, or with it. Probably a bit of both, but either way it brought a smile to my face.

I made some really in-depth review notes for your perusal:

Don't call him your mistress!!!

Don’t call him your mistress!!!

Excellent Vocab!

Excellent Vocab!

Angry-sticking-up-for-his-but-not-his-woman-hot-Werewolf-action!

Angry-sticking-up-for-his-but-not-his-woman-hot-Werewolf-action!

I’ll definitely have a go on the next in the series! I give it 4 Unicorns. (Out of 5 Unicorns, BTW)

Soulless is published by Orbit.

A Novel of Vampires, Werewolves and Parasols?

I’m in one of those moods where I can’t decide what I want to do: Go out; stay in; watch something; read something; do some housework…I’m annoying myself!

So I just picked up Soulless by Gail Carriger which I’ve had lying around for months and from the first chapter all I can say is LOL. It’s already hilariously bad, which by the way, is one of my favourite genres. Is this Steampunk? apparently it is…I can’t say I really understand the whole Steampunk thing but nevertheless I have a feeling that this is going to be either complete trashy brilliance or absolute utter bollocks.

See for yourself…

To put the pudding in the puff: she had retreated to the library, her favourite sanctuary in any house, only to happen upon an unexpected vampire.

She glared at the vampire.

For his part, the vampire seemed to feel that their encounter had improved his ball experience immeasurably. For there she sat, without escort, in a low-necked ball gown.

Oh, and now the vampire is dead. That was quick. (Not a spoiler – it’s in the blurb!)

We have also just encountered Lord Maccon, a (probably) hot werewolf with a scottish accent. Pretty much anyone with a Scottish accent is hot, right? And now I’m picturing Fit Hemsworth in Snow White and the Huntsman. Nice.

I’m not sure why I’m only reading books with Lords in lately, or for that matter only ones with young ladies in exceptional attire on the covers.

You just wait for my The Selection/Elite rant…just saying.

It’s the Weekend!!!

Happy Long Weekend You Guys!

I have spent most of the day at work with the phones and internet down which basically makes my job 100% redundant. But it doesn’t matter because the three day weekend starts NOW and I have a pile of amazing books to get through including Bitterblue which I received from Gollancz recently in exchange for a review. Score.

Here’s some weekend inspiration for you.

George

Fire by Kristin Cashore: Some thoughts so far

It's not just her name that's hot! Click to view Fire on GoodReads.

It’s not just her name that’s hot!
Click to view Fire on GoodReads.

I had planned on finishing and reviewing Fire last night but alas, it was relatively sunny outside so I ended up in the beer garden having a debate about drawing a cock on Mars and putting cancer in prison (don’t ask), such is life.

It’s taken me nigh on 200 pages to really get into this but that’s not really a reflection on the book (It’s good!). I think I was just so in love with the first book in the series, Graceling that I was in mourning over it. I mean, I’d just come to terms with fancying a character called Po and allowed myself to swoon over him and then it ended. But it’s all OK, I thought, I can get the second book off my partner in YA crime, Di, and all will be OK….BUT THERE’S NO PO IN IT? WHAAAT?

But do not fret. There may be no Po, (still a really, really stupid name!) but there is Prince Brigan. Oh hello. He’s not described as being particularly hot, but he has a scar on his upper-lip (why is that so fhfgygvklso?). He’s pretty aloof to start with but that just adds to the charm. He’s serious, he’s going to war for god’s sake. All of these things clearly = swoon. But why the hell haven’t they got it on yet? Jesus.

I have about 150 pages to go and if it doesn’t happen soon, there will be hell to pay Dianne Tanner!

Also, Archer needs to get out of my face.

Fire is published by Gollancz.