Top Ten Tuesday: If you really loved me… #TTT #WishlistBooks

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

This week the topic is… Top Ten Tuesday REWIND — go back and do a topic you missed over the years or recently or a topic you really want to revisit.

I’m pretty pleased with this topic because I missed last week’s and really wanted to do it. Therefore (even though it will make me cry because of all the pretty books out of my price range) I’m doing: Ten Books You’d Buy Right This Second If Someone Handed You A Fully Loaded Gift Card.

  1. The whole collection of Penguin’s Clothbound Classics. I have one so far (Alice in Wonderland). Must try harder! £20 each
  2. David Bowie Is: Companion to the V&A Exhibition ❤ £35
  3. Peter Pan: Yes I already own two different copies of this…but this new one looks so pretty and has interactive illustrations (almost a pop-up but not quite). £25
  4. The Chronicles of Narnia: My set is one of the standard paperback ones, but I want a nice version like this sooooo bad! £75 ish
  5. Red Queen Hardback Book Set: This isn’t out until Oct 25th, and I have Red Queen in hardback already, but Glass Sword in paperback…which is irritating…£29

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  6. Canterbury Classics Leather-bound set: So, so pretty! £105
  7. Labyrinth 30th Anniversary Visual History: Omg I need this so bad. It’s also not out until Oct. I think it will be the first thing on my Christmas list 🙂 £30 (and while we’re at it I’d like the novelisation too but can’t find it anywhere – not the original version anyway).
  8. The Gormenghast Trilogy (Folio Society edition): Need I say anything? £30
  9. The Raven Pop-Up Book: I didn’t know this existed until, well, just, but now I NEED IT! £25
  10. The Compact Oxford English Dictionary: Yep, I’m totally channelling Rory Gilmore here…but who DOESN’T want this beauty!? £260

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I really could have carried on FOREVER!

When Everything Feels Like the Movies #BookReview #YA #LGBTReads

summer16.2Title: When Everything Feels Like the Movies
Author: Raziel Reid
Series: N/A
Format: Digital ARC, 176 pages
Publication Details: August 4th 2016 by Atom
Genre(s): Contemporary YA; LGBT
Disclosure? Yep! I received a free copy in exchange for an HONEST review. 

Goodreads 

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Everyone wanted to break me. But stars aren’t broken, they explode. And I was the ultimate supernova.

My name was Jude. They called me Judy. I was beautiful either way.

School was basically a movie set. We were all just playing our parts. The Crew, the Extras, the Movie Stars. No one was ever real . . . especially me. I didn’t fit any category.

All the girls watched me – I could walk so much better than them in heels, and my make-up was always flawless.

All the boys wanted to, well, you know . . . even if they didn’t admit it.

They loved me, they hated me, but they could never ignore me.

I only had eyes for Luke. A red carpet rolled out from my heart towards him and this year, on Valentine’s Day, I was going to walk that carpet and find my mark next to him. It would be like a dream.

But my dream was going to turn into a nightmare.

This is my story.

Review

*spoilers ahead*

 

Contemporary YA is always quite hit and miss for me. Usually I either completely fall in love, or end up despising them – it’s definitely a Marmite genre for me. When Everything Feels Like the Movies was an exception to the rule – I’m still torn. 

Jude, (who is mockingly called Judy by his schoolmates – a nickname he chooses to embrace) thinks of his life as a movie, and he is the star. The haters at school are the bit-part actors and he lets their insults wash over him like confetti at an awards show. The more they talk about him, the more famous he gets. 

Jude is hopelessly in love with Jock-type Luke and dreams of going to the Prom with him. No amount of rebuttals (or the fact that Luke appears to be very straight) will deter him from asking him to the dance, but little does he realise that this one question will be his ultimate downfall. 

I don’t think it’s  a huge spoiler to tell you that Jude is killed by the end of this book because that’s one of the things I didn’t like about it – the reader is told quite early on that Jude does not live to tell the tale and I really wish it was kept as a surprise. However, I think it’s so important for books like this to exist. It was heartbreaking and sadly plausible, and for me that’s what gives it the impact. 

I really didn’t enjoy the beginning of this book. I found it overly vulgar and cheap, and it takes a lot for me to think of something as vulgar – I’m not easily shocked and I think I’m about as open minded as they come – but it took me a while to understand the tone of this book. Once I did, it was more enjoyable though.

The more I read, the more I understood Jude’s character, and I did end up loving him and his I-give-no-shits attitude. However, I found the endless movie analogies a little bit clichéd and irritating, but saying that, it did ring true to who Jude is. 

#WEFLTM is a short novel, and a really quick read in terms of pace too. If I had to rate it at the 25% mark it wouldn’t have been as favourable but I’m glad I gave it a chance. maybe you should too…

unicorn rating 3

Lazy Saturday Review: And I Darken by Kiersten White

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I started doing ‘lazy Saturday reviews’ as a way of getting reviews done in just 30 mins, and they proved to be quite popular. They are quick and snappy, and concentrate less on the plot (or content) and writing and more on my overall feelings about said book. They generally end up being a bit of a rant. My fave!

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Title: And I Darken
Author: Kiersten White
Series: The Conquerors Series #1
Format: Digital ARC, 484 pages
Publication Details: July 7th 2016 by Corgi Childrens
Genre(s): YA; Fanstasy; Historical
Disclosure? Yep! I received an advanced copy in exchange for an HONEST review. 

Goodreads 

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No one expects a princess to be brutal. And Lada Dragwyla likes it that way.

Ever since she and her brother were abandoned by their father to be raised in the Ottoman sultan’s courts, Lada has known that ruthlessness is the key to survival. For the lineage that makes her and her brother special also makes them targets.

Lada hones her skills as a warrior as she nurtures plans to wreak revenge on the empire that holds her captive. Then she and Radu meet the sultan’s son, Mehmed, and everything changes. Now Mehmed unwittingly stands between Lada and Radu as they transform from siblings to rivals, and the ties of love and loyalty that bind them together are stretched to breaking point.

Review

I LOVED the idea of this book. I loved that the protagonist is female and based on Vlad the Impaler. I loved that she is a brutal princess who falls in love and has the possibility of thawing throughout the story.

I assumed I would be rooting for her the whole way through. I assumed I would eat this novel up. But.I.Just.Couldn’t.Get.Into.It. I tried, I really tried, and I can’t even pin-point what I didn’t like about it but I kept putting it down and had no motivation to pick it up again. 

I enjoyed the complex relationship between Lada and her brother Radu and how she tried her best to protect him in her own feral way, even if she didn’t understand him and his weaknesses.

I also liked that Lada herself was so unique; she’s certainly not a character you’d come across much in YA so And I Darken definitely stood out for that reason but the pace was just way too slow for my liking. It felt like nothing happened for the first half of the book which frustrated me no end.

Overall, I think this book left me a bit cold due to the deadly mixture of the hype-monster and a slow pace/beginning.

I seem to be in the minority as far as opinions on this go though, so I’d urge you to try it for yourself if you like the premise.

unicorn rating 2 

 

This Month in Books: June & July 2016 #TMIB

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If you haven’t noticed, things have been a little slow around here due to IRL stuff. I went away at the beginning of July, then went to a music festival, and then I moved house. I also now work across two sites so my working week seems busier too. It’s all been fun though, well apart from moving house, but that at least has been successful! 

Anyway, seeing as I failed to do a June round-up and July was so sparse, I’ll do a quick summary for both. 

June / July 2016 Stats

Total Posts: 17 (15, 2)

Books Read: 6 (4, 2)
Magruder’s Curiosity Cabinet ~ H.P Wood
Glove of Satin, Glove of Bone ~ Rachel White
Save me Kurt Cobain ~ Jenny Manzer
The Foreshadowing ~ Marcus Sedgwick
And I Darken ~ Kiersten White
Shadow & Bone ~ 
Leigh Bardugo

The Breakdown:
Genres: YA (4/6); Horror/Supernatural (2/6); Historical (2/6); Contemporary (1/6)

Formats/Sources: Advance Copy (3/6); Digital (3/6); Hardback (2/6); Paperback (1/6) / Owned (1/6); Borrowed (1/6); For Review (3/6)

Most Surprising: None really! 
Most Disappointing: And I Darken
Most Exciting: Shadow & Bone
Most Swoon-worthy:  Shadow & Bone
Most Beautifully Written: The Foreshadowing

Reviews: 3 (-3)

    • Save me Kurt Cobain by Jenny Manzer, 3/5 (View)
    • Glove of Satin, Glove of Bone by Rachel White, 3/5 (View)
    • Magruder’s Curiosity Cabinet by H.P Wood, 3/5 (View)
    • The War Against the Assholes by Sam Munson, DNF (View)

Most Viewed Posts

  1. This Week in Books (06.07.16)
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  3. Book Promo: Drawn to Her

Promos, Guest Posts and other

Awards

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August Releases

Here’s my pick of the August Releases

Are you looking forward to any of these?

This Week in Books (03.08.16) #TWIB

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Welcome to my weekly post, where I sum-up what I’ve been up to in bookland the past week. 

Happy Wednesday! I’m hoping to get back to a normal schedule from now on – hurrah!  If you’re joining in with TWIB don’t forget to leave the link to your post so everyone can come and take a look. 

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Now:  The Seeing Stone  ~ Kevin Crossley-Holland

I’m still reading this one. It hasn’t captured my attention as much as I thought it would but I really want t finish it. I’m still hoping it will get better…

Then: When Everything Feels Like the Movies ~ Raziel Reid.

I managed to finish this super-quick read. It’s the first book I’ve finished in a while! I liked it but didn’t love it. My review will hopefully be up on Monday. 

Next: ??? 

I think I’ll go for The Song of Achilles (which is featured below), but I may well change my mind!

New on the Shelves

I borrowed this from the library. I’ve heard really good things about at!

songof Greece in the age of heroes. Patroclus, an awkward young prince, has been exiled to the court of King Peleus and his perfect son Achilles. Despite their difference, Achilles befriends the shamed prince, and as they grow into young men skilled in the arts of war and medicine, their bond blossoms into something deeper – despite the displeasure of Achilles’ mother Thetis, a cruel sea goddess.

But when word comes that Helen of Sparta has been kidnapped, Achilles must go to war in distant Troy and fulfill his destiny. Torn between love and fear for his friend, Patroclus goes with him, little knowing that the years that follow will test everything they hold dear.

Waiting on Wednesday

(linking up with Breaking the Spine)

The Chemist ~ Stephenie Meyer

 

I’m actually really excited by this. I’m probably in the minority when I say that I loved The Host, and the Twilight books will always be one of my favourite guilty pleasures. I’m pleased Meyer is trying different things. The Host was a lot more Sci-Fi than I expected her to go, and I personally think she did it really well. Let’s see if she can add action/ thriller to her repertoire.

thechemist

 

In this gripping page-turner, an ex-agent on the run from her former employers must take one more case to clear her name and save her life.

She used to work for the U.S. government, but very few people ever knew that. An expert in her field, she was one of the darkest secrets of an agency so clandestine it doesn’t even have a name. And when they decided she was a liability, they came for her without warning.

Now, she rarely stays in the same place or uses the same name for long. They’ve killed the only other person she trusted, but something she knows still poses a threat. They want her dead, and soon.

When her former handler offers her a way out, she realizes it’s her only chance to erase the giant target on her back. But it means taking one last job for her ex-employers. To her horror, the information she acquires only makes her situation more dangerous.

Resolving to meet the threat head on, she prepares for the toughest fight of her life, but finds herself falling for a man who can only complicate her likelihood of survival. As she sees her choices being rapidly whittled down, she must apply her unique talents in ways she never dreamed of.

In this tautly plotted novel, Meyer creates a fierce and fascinating new heroine with a very specialized skill set. And she shows once again why she’s one of the world’s bestselling authors. 

Expected publication: November 15th 2016 by Little, Brown and Company

  So, that’s my week in books, now how about yours?

If you’re joining in leave the link to your answers in the comments so everyone can take a look 🙂