And Now for Something Completely Different…

omni180
Title: The Mind’s Eye: The Art of Omni
Author: Edited by Jeremy Frommer & Rick Schwartz
Edition: Hardcover, 180 pages
Published: June 10th 2014 by powerHouse Books
Genre(s): Non-Fiction; Sci-Fi; Art

GOODREADS
PURCHASE

Omni was a jewel among popular science magazines of its era (1978–1998). Science Digest, Science News, Scientific America, and Discover may have all been selling well to armchair scientists, but Omni masterfully blended cutting edge science news and science fiction, flashy graphic design, a touch of sex, and the images of a generation of artists completely free and unburdened by the disciplines of the masters.

Created by the legendary Bob Guccione, better known for founding Penthouse than perhaps any of the other facets of his inspired career in business, art, and literature, Guccione handpicked the artists and illustrators that contributed to the Omni legacy—they in turn created works ignited by passion and intellect, two of Guccione’s principal ideals.

The Mind’s Eye: The Art of Omni is the very first publication to celebrate in stunning detail the exceptional science fiction imagery of this era in an oversized format. The Mind’s Eye contains 185 images from contributing Omni artists including John Berkey, Chris Moore, H.R. Giger, Rafal Olbinski, Rallé, Tsuneo Sanda, Hajime Sorayama, Robert McCall, and Colin Hay among many more, along with quotes from artists, contributors, writers, and critics. With an introduction by Ben Bova.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

My Thoughts

This isn’t a review as I know very little about the source material, and wouldn’t even really consider myself an art-lover. However, I am a fan of Science Fiction and recognised many of the names cited in the synopsis, so when I was approached about this book I jumped at the chance to see more.

Some of the images are recognisable, some are like nothing I’ve ever seen before, but they are all completely stunning different ways. Together with interesting quotes, The Mind’s Eye is a beautiful collection. I couldn’t stop looking at it and I feel like it’s a must-see for any Sci-Fi fan. It’s definitely one of the coolest ‘coffee table’ books I’ve ever seen, and I can’t help thinking about all the people who would love to be given it as a gift!

Meet the Editors

Jeremy Frommer, Wall Street financier and media industry investor, has been collecting art and pop culture memorabilia for over 20 years. In 2009, he retired from the financial services industry, where he was senior managing director and global head of The Royal Bank of Canada’s Global Prime Services division. Soon thereafter, Frommer and his business partner, producer Rick Schwartz, began acquiring a number of intellectual properties and media assets. In early 2012, they formed Jerrick Ventures. Jerrick Ventures acquired the assets of Omni magazine, including its vast art collection.

Rick Schwartz is an award-winning film producer and financier based in New York. Throughout his career, he has worked on a wide range of critically acclaimed and commercially successful films including The Aviator, Gangs of New York, Machete, and Black Swan. Schwartz has been involved with movies that have cumulatively grossed over one billion dollars in worldwide box office sales and earned 31 Academy Award nominations. He is a member of the Producers Guild of America and the Screen Actors Guild, as well as a published writer whose work has appeared in such outlets as The Times of London, The Huffington Post, The Washington Times, and Grantland.

A Litte More About Omni

Founded in 1978, Omni Magazine was, for 20 years, one of the most influential science magazine in existence. Publishing early works by such authors as Orson Scott Card, William Gibson, George R.R. Martin, William S. Burroughs, Stephen King, and Joyce Carol Oats, the magazine was pioneering in its focus on “an original if not controversial mixture of science fact, fiction, fantasy and the paranormal.” Along with speculative essay and fiction, Omni published lush art essays and “space art.”

Omni lived in a time well before the digital revolution. The images you see on the pages have taken years to track down and brought the editors in touch with many esteemed artists, amazing photographers and dusty storage lockers. Their quest is far from over; you’ll notice an almost decade-long gap in the material, the contents of which were either lost or destroyed. Efforts to search throughout the universe for any images will continue and will be shared with the world at the all-things-Omni website, omnireboot.com. Stay tuned…

“Omni is not a science magazine. It is a magazine about the future…Omni was sui generis. Although there were plenty of science magazines over the years…Omni was the first magazine to slant all its pieces toward the future. It was fun to read and gorgeous to look at.” —Ben Bova, six-time Hugo award winner

All images are subject to copyright, powerHouse Books. Not to be used without permission.

Curses, Nurses, and a Ticket to Bedlam…

16055875
Title: The Prisoner of Brenda
Series: Mystery Man #4
Author: Bateman
Edition: Paperback, 416 pages
Published: October 25th 2012 by Headline
Genre(s): Crime; Mystery
Disclosure? Nope, it was a gift from a friend.

Goodreads
Purchase

When notorious gangster ‘Fat Sam’ Mahood is murdered, the chief suspect is arrested nearby. But he seems to have suffered a breakdown. Incarcerated in a mental institution, he’s known only as the Man in the White Suit. The suspect remains an enigma until Nurse Brenda calls on Mystery Man, former patient and owner of No Alibis, Belfast’s finest mystery bookshop, to bring his powers of investigation to bear… However, before our hero can even begin, the Man in the White Suit is arrested for the murder of a fellow patient. But is he a double murderer or a helpless scapegoat? Intrigue, conspiracy, and ancient Latin curses all combine to give the Small Bookseller with No Name his most difficult case to date.

I’m a huge fan of Colin Bateman and have been slowly working my way through his extensive back catalogue since I read the first book in this series, Mystery Man, in 2009.

The books are centered around The Man With No Name, owner of mystery bookshop, No Alibi’s in Belfast. He is an unhinged, hypochondriac addicted to twix’s and Starbucks, and one of those characters that is absolutely hilarious to read, but if you knew him, he would be insufferable.

I’ve said it many times before, but the best way I can describe the man with no name is Bernard Black from Black Books, who inadvertently ends up trying to solve crimes, both big and small.

 

The Prisoner of Brenda started off with gusto and I was literally LOL-ing at every page.

Nurse Brenda asks Mystery Man for his help in finding out who killed Fat Sam Masood, in the hopes that he will clear her dumb-struck patient who just happens to be the chief suspect in the murder.

I must say, I loved the first half of this book, and as I said, it made me laugh so much, but I didn’t enjoy the mystery as much as the other books in the series, and so the second half was a bit of a disappointment.

Quite a chunk of this book sees Mystery Man incarcerated in the same mental institution as The Man in White Suit, and while, we can only imagine that he got himself sectioned on purpose, we’re never quite sure – afterall he is pretty insane on any normal day as it is.

I enjoyed that element of it, but it lost its magic for me when he begins to become more ‘normal’, due to lack of coffee and the dubious cocktail of drugs he buys on the internet. Much to my dismay, my interest started to wain.

However, there were some great moments. I loved the relationship between Alison and Mystery Man as much as I have in earlier books, and his mother provides a lot of black humour as always, especially when she almost kills poor Jeff (the hired help) with a lamp.

I finished The Prisoner of Brenda on a bit of a meh, but I’m still looking forward to more. It definitely remains one of my favourite series, and one that I urge people to pick up. This one just wasn’t my favourite of the bunch.

You can’t be brilliant all the time, right? Not that Mystery Man himself would ever agree with that!

unicorn rating 3

All books in Bateman’s Mystery Man series are available now in paperback from Waterstones.

WWW Wednesday! 11.06.2014

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?

I’m pretty much back on track with ARCs and reviews and things, so whooooop for that! Here are my answers for this week:

wwwcoll

Currently Reading: I finally, finally, Finally got my copy of The One and it’s going too quickly. I don’t want it to end!

Recently Finished: I finished The Apple Tart of Hope and Take Back the Skies this week. I loved them both! Click on the links if you want to read my reviews.

Up Next: Now this is a hard one. I have some author review books I really need to start but I’m going up north at the weekend so will need to take a paperback with me (no, I don’t do Kindles). I have Burial Rites, Cress, Vampire Academy #3 and many more to choose from….how to choose!!

I think Burial Rites is too serious for me to pick up and down so I think I’m leaning towards Cress (it’s been too long a wait already!)

Link me to your post, so I can see what you’ve been up to! 🙂

Top Ten Tuesday: Books Read This Year

toptentuesday
Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish (click the image to visit them) who pick a different topic each week.

This week the topic is: The Top Ten Books You’ve Read So Far This Year.

I’ve read 34 books this year thus far, so there’s not actually that many to choose from. That being said, these 10 books are all so amazing it was hard to put them in order.

10. The Dead in their Vaulted Arches by Alan Bradley

9. The Weight of Blood by Laura McHugh

8. Take Back the Skies by Lucy Saxon

7. Insurgent by Veronica Roth

6. Dark Eden by Chris Beckett

5. Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead

tttyear

4. The Ask and the Answer by Patrick Ness

3. Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

2. Divergent by Veronica Roth

1. Cinder by Marissa Meyer

What made your list?

Currently Reading: The One by Kiera Cass

15844362The Selection changed America Singer’s life in ways she never could have imagined. Since she entered the competition to become the next princess of Illéa, America has struggled with her feelings for her first love, Aspen–and her growing attraction to Prince Maxon. Now she’s made her choice . . . and she’s prepared to fight for the future she wants.

Find out who America will choose in The One, the enchanting, beautifully romantic third book in the Selection series!

Regular readers will probably be well aware of my unashamed fangirling over this series, and the TURMOIL I was in when the UK release was put back…and back…and back. It got to the point where I didn’t care anymore. I was over it. I didn’t even want to read it anymore.

And then it turned up on my doorstep, and all was forgiven. LOOK HOW PRETTY IT IS.

I’m only six chapters in at the moment, but I’m seriously, sadly hooked again. Oh Maxon, how I’ve missed you.

I could say more, but time writing this, is time away from Maxon.

Swoon-o-rama!

Goodreads
Purchase

The One (The Selection #3) is out now.

Bookish (and not so bookish) Thoughts #5

This meme is hosted by the Bookishly Boisterous and the idea is simple. It’s a round-up of your week, in and out of book world. A place to store your thoughts, and basically anything you’d like to share on your blog.

It’s been a while since I did one of these, so I should have loads to tell you…hmmm…

1. In blog news, I got approved for the Waterstones Affiliate programme, which I was really pleased about. You can get 10% off too so check out my post here.

2. I’m also slowly catching up after being behind on reviews, and ARCs and reading in general. Work life and home life have both been busy which hasn’t left much time for reading and blogging, and the weekend just gone is the only free-ish one I’ll have all this month too. Gah…I’m having lots of fun, but I feel bad when I can’t review ARCs by their release date, don’t you?

3. The weekend before last, I went to Cardiff in Wales for a friend’s Hen party. It was so much fun, and I got to visit a castle, one of my favourite things to do! I was really surprised now nice Cardiff was tbh!

4. This series of Game of Thrones has been so epic, I’m really sad that there’s only two episodes left. TYRIONNNN. I’m totally in love with him. He’s also brilliant in the new X-men which I saw at the weekend. IT’S SO GOOD. I didn’t really rate the last one so I was surprised how awesome it was.

5. I also finally got round to seeing the film adaptation of Vampire Academy. Oh seriously, just no. It was terrible. TERRIBLE. I’d say my disappointment was on par with the Twilight films. THAT BAD. Worse than Divergent. THAT BAD. I mean seriously, look what they did to hot Dimitri:

Dimitri_at_the_dance

6. Another reason why I’ve fallen behind in life is because of the French Open. SO happy for Rafa, who won yesterday! Yayyyyy!

nadal-640-fistpumping

Yes, I love tennis, and you’ll have to put up with a lot more of me talking about it when Wimbledon starts… other than Christmas, it’s my favourite time of year!!! I just hope Nadal’s knees hold up! Eeeek.

7. I reaaaaaaaaaaaaaally want to go on holiday this summer. A cheap but cheerful holiday in Spain or something where I can just lie on a beach, read, drink sangria and eat Tapas for a week. But I have no money. 😥 Anyone want to take me on holiday?

8. Rose plant update: In my last Bookish post I talked about a plant I’d bought. I’m not sure how to look after plants, or anything, so I thought I’d try and see how long I can keep it alive. 3 weeks on and it looks pretty good.

rose2

Woooo. I like how when the rose petals start to die, they go purple. Pretty. Maybe I’m ready for a pet??

9. Lastly, I’m waiting for The Great British Bake Off to start…seriously, why isn’t it on yet!!! It’s not summer until I can laugh at someone’s soggy bottom.

Apple Tarts Vs Hope and Despair…

apple
Title: The Apple Tart of Hope
Author: Sarah Moore Fitzgerald
Series: N/A
Edition: Hardcover, 272 pages
Published: June 5th 2014 by Orion
Genre(s): YA; Contemporary
Disclosure? Yep, I received a copy via the author/publisher in exchange for an HONEST review

Goodreads
Purchase

I found the beginning of this book rather odd which made it a little hard to get into, but it soon becomes apparent that that oddness is what makes The Apple Tart of Hope such a unique read.

It opens at a service being held for Oscar Dunleavy, who is presumed dead. The church is full; the atmosphere, strange. The narrative comes from Meg, who claims to be Oscar’s best friend, but another girl, one with golden hair, is called up to speak a few words about Oscar, as she is apparently his closest friend.

Throughout the book we are taken back to how it all began, switching between the perspectives of both Meg and Oscar. At the start, they are inseparable. They live next door to each other and their bedroom windows face each other so they can lean out and talk every night.

Life seems pretty good, everyone gets on with each other at school, and Oscar and Meg are well-loved. There is a whimsical sort of magic to Oscar. He’s an unusual character for a young boy. He’s kind and deeply thoughtful, and likes to solve people’s problems by baking them exquisite apple tarts.

But it’s not an ordinary apple tart. It’s the apple tart of hope. After you’ve taken a bite, the whole world will look almost completely different. Things will start to change and by the time you’ve had a whole slice, you’ll realise that everything is going to be OK.”

And then it all starts to go wrong. Meg is forced to move to New Zealand, and Paloma – the girl with the golden hair – moves into Meg’s house…

Oh man, this was a rollarcoaster. Once I got into it I couldn’t put it down. I needed to know how things had spiraled so out of control for Oscar and Meg. It really captured something special about being young, especially the perils of school days and friendship.

It’s hard to explain without giving the whole plot away, but I will say that at certain points in this book I was filled with so much hate for what happened to Oscar and Meg, and I knew then that this book was something special, not to mention how beautifully it’s written.

The man was a maze of wrinkles and his hands were dirty. Tears made shiny branch-like patterns on his cheeks.”

This was my first read of Sarah Moore Fitzgerald, and it definitely won’t be my last. I need to find her debut Back to Blackbrick, stat!

unicorn rating 4

Available now from Waterstones in hardback, or to pre-order in paperback (due 05/02/15).

Disclosure! And 10% off at Waterstones Offer

In the interest of full disclosure I wanted to let you all know about some new features/links on Lipsyy Lost & Found.

I was recently approved for the Waterstones affiliate programme, which means that I can advertise them in exchange for a small commission (4%) if anyone buys something* from them via my blog.

So What’s New? I hear you ask.
Not a lot really. On the sidebar you will see the Waterstones banner (which I think is really cute). If you click on that it will take you to the Waterstones website. Below that, is an Affiliate Window banner, which is the service that Waterstones uses to manage their affiliates. If you click on that it will take you to Affiliate Window where you can apply to advertise a whole range of companies in exchange for a small commission. I’ve found the system really easy to use so far and recommend it.

I will be posting Purchase Links for each book I feature so you can go and order it if you so wish, and I will have more offers/promos in tandem with Waterstones.com, but other than that, my site will stay the same.

Why I applied
I feel like this is the next step for my site. I don’t think I’ll ever make much money from it, but as they say, every little helps. If any of my posts do encourage you buy a certain book I’d really love it if you’d consider using Waterstones from my site. UK postage is free, but international postage does apply.

The main reason I wanted to this though, is to show my support for Waterstones. Over the last few years we have seen so many bookshops go out of business, and Waterstones is one of the few large chains left operating UK wide. It feels good to advertise an actual bookshop – and one that I’ve used all of my consumer life – rather than say Amazon.

You can read more about Waterstones here.

10% Off

I have a vouchercode for 10% off any orders* over £25 before midnight on 25th August 2014.

Simply click on the banner below (or on the sidebar), make your selections and enter the code LE1025 at checkout.



*Print books and stationary. Excludes Kindle, downloads and the click & collect service.
Online orders only. Full T&Cs at waterstones.com/terms

(Out Today!) Skyships, Pickpockets, and a Whole Lot of Lies…

take
Title: Take Back the Skies
Series: Take Back the Skies #1
Author: Lucy Saxon
Edition: e-book, 496 pages
Published: June 5th 2014 by Bloomsbury Publishing Plc
Genre(s): YA; Fantasy; Steampunk
Disclosure? Yep, I received a copy via the author/publisher in exchange for an HONEST review.

Goodreads
Purchase

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 . . .

I wasn’t sure what to expect from Take Back the Skies. I’d read a few unfavourable reviews, and found out that the author is only 19, 16 when she started writing the novel, which I realise I shouldn’t let sway me before even opening the book, but of course it does!

Then I started reading, and it was good. Really good! I was hoping to skim-read it because I’ve fallen behind on ARCS/reviews lately, but I found that I didn’t want to skim it at all, I wanted to savour it.

Take Back the Skies is a fast-paced, well written, fantasy-adventure. Protagonist Cat, is a loveable, head-strong character who I instantly felt invested in.

We follow her as she runs away from her snobbish, government father who wants to marry her off for status, to the skyship Stormdancer where she meets a colourful array of characters who soon become Cat’s family. Once in the skies, it quickly becomes apparent that things in Anglya and the surrounding islands are not as they seem. The war seems to have ended, so why are all the teenagers being ‘collected’ to go to war? Where are they?

Seriously guys, I really loved this. There was a lot of action and intrigue, and I think the world Saxon built is great. There was a lot of characterisation too, so even though Cat hadn’t known the crew of the Stormdancer very long, it felt OK how close they became. There is a cute romance between Cat and Fox, a hot orphan who likes to get his guns out – in both senses of the word – but it did start to feel a bit Twilight-y on some occasions where Fox was telling Cat that he’s no good for her and she should choose another. And also Cat thinking that he couldn’t possibly like her. Yawn.

Once they’d gotten over that though, and decided to be together, I liked that it wasn’t all Cat thought about. There was no ‘omg he kissed me and it felt amazing and I want to touch him all the time’, it was pretty much wham, bam, thank you maam (they’re wasn’t actually any ‘bamming’, don’t get your hopes up).

Cat, Fox and the rest of the Stormdancer crew were intent on outing the government and finding out what was happening to all the kids, and once they do, there’s definitely a sense of look what you’ve got yourselves into. I really enjoyed the conflict between high-society and the commoners, and the sinister operations of the government – I wasn’t expecting that plot at all.

However, I can’t wrap this up without talking about the ending. No spoilers I promise, but it was just bad. End of. There was no need for the Epilogue at all, nothing was resolved, and I only hope that the outcome makes more sense in the second book.

I’m tempted to give it 3 Unicorns just because of the ending, but the rest of it was so good, so I won’t. Any book that makes me GASP deserves 4 Unicorns.

unicorn rating 4

Take Back the Skies is available from Waterstones in Limited 1st Edition Hardback, and Paperback from today.

WWW Wednesday 04.06.2014

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?

I’ve been so busy this past week, and at the weekend I had an amazing time at a friend’s Hen Party weekend in Wales. That does mean, however that I’ve had hardly no reading and/or blogging time so I’m trying to play catch up right now!

Anyway, here’s what I’ve been not-reading….

wwwcoll

Currently Reading: I’m still reading Take Back the Skies by Lucy Saxon, which I was just about to start this time last week. I’m about a 3rd of the way through, and I’m enjoying it a lot.

Recently Finished: The last one I finished was The Prisoner of Brenda by Bateman which I still haven’t reviewed. But will ASAP.

Up Next: The Apple Tart of Hope by Sarah Moore Fitzgerald. This is an ARC review book but it’s out in 2 days. Ahhhhh so behind.

I didn’t even watch Game of Thrones on Monday because I was trying to catch up on reading. But I just fell asleep. MEGA FAIL.

Link me up to your posts and I’ll see how much better you all are than me 😉