Lazy Saturday Review: Cress by Marissa Meyer

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Title: Cress
Series: The Lunar Chronicles #3
Author: Marissa Meyer
Edition: Paperback, 550 pages
Published: February 6th 2014 by Puffin Books
Genre(s): YA; Fantasy; Sci-Fi
Disclosure? Nope, I bought it!

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In this third book in the Lunar Chronicles, Cinder and Captain Thorne are fugitives on the run, now with Scarlet and Wolf in tow. Together, they’re plotting to overthrow Queen Levana and her army.

Their best hope lies with Cress, a girl imprisoned on a satellite since childhood who’s only ever had her netscreens as company. All that screen time has made Cress an excellent hacker. Unfortunately, she’s just received orders from Levana to track down Cinder and her handsome accomplice.

When a daring rescue of Cress goes awry, the group is separated. Cress finally has her freedom, but it comes at a high price. Meanwhile, Queen Levana will let nothing prevent her marriage to Emperor Kai. Cress, Scarlet, and Cinder may not have signed up to save the world, but they may be the only hope the world has.

What can I say about Cress that hasn’t been said already? Very little probably! Is it amazing? YES. Is it a compelling, satisfying continuation of what I’ve already declared to be my favourite new series? YES. But is it too long? Hell YES.

Don’t get me wrong, I loved this book. I loved Meyer’s galactic take on Rapunzel, I loved the dynamics between Scarlet and Wolf, and Cress an Captain Thorne (bless her) but I do think it went on a bit in places, no?

To be fair, it might be because I was really busy at the time of reading it, so I was grabbing just a few minutes here and there to read, but sometimes I felt myself skimming parts.

However, that just makes me want to read it again in more substantial sittings because ahhhhhh, on the whole, I can’t stop fangirling over this series.

I still can’t get over how it shouldn’t work. Fairy-tale retellings meets Star Wars, with a bit of Dystopia thrown in…I mean it sounds ridiculous, but it’s just not. Cress, felt even more Star Wars-y to me than Cinder did, and that’s not a bad thing. I’m just trying to figure out who Darth Vader is, Sybil or Levana?

(Anywaaayyyyy) Towards the end of Cress, we’re introduced to Princess Winter. And wow, how batshit is she!? I’m quite upset how long we have to wait for the next book. I have no doubt in my mind that it’s going to be amazing.

I need to know what happens with Cinder and Kai RIGHT NOW!

unicorn rating 4

The Lunar Chronicles is now available in paperback from Waterstones. See how you can get 10% off here.

YALC UK is upon us!

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The UK’s first ever Young Adult Literature Convention is taking place this weekend at Earl’s Court, London, and I can’t wait. Are any of you planning on going?

I’m aiming to go for both days because there’s SO much I want to see/do, and because the entry also gets you into the Film Comic Con I’m hoping to see some of that too.

About YALC 2014


Malorie Blackman (Noughts & Crosses; Knife Edge) is acting as curator and director for the first UK Young Adult Literature Convention (YALC) which is taking place at the London Film and Comic Con 2014 (LFCC).

The two-day convention taking place 12-13 July will bring together the UK’s YA publishers to provide a host of author events in a dedicated Book Zone, with talks, workshops, signings, a book sales area and publisher stands promoting new and upcoming titles. 50 authors plus a host of industry experts will be taking part in the event over the course of the weekend.

2014’s YALC event will be the first time a large-scale public convention around Young Adult books has taken place in the UK, and its setting among the fans of cultish film and TV will help set books at the heart of entertainment for teenagers and young people. The event will aim to showcase UK YA’s best books and authors, as well as bringing international authors to UK audiences.

Events

Here are just a few of the events I’m hoping to attend – excitement is at an all-time high right now!

It’s the end of the world as we know it: The ongoing appeal of dystopia
With Malorie Blackman, Sarah Crossan and Patrick Ness, chaired by James Smythe

With Divergent and Catching Fire achieving box office success and a host of hot new dystopian tales in the offing, the trend for dystopia shows no sign of fading. YALC curator and Waterstones Children’s Laureate 2013-2015 Malorie Blackman is joined by fellow authors Patrick Ness and Sarah Crossan, plus chair James Smythe, to talk about why dystopian fiction appeals to young adult readers today.

Superfans Unite!
With Tim O’Rourke, Rainbow Rowell and Lucy Saxon, chaired by Andy Robb

Superstar US author of Fangirl and Eleanor and Park Rainbow Rowell joins three other teen authors and self-declared superfans – Andy Robb, Lucy Saxon and Tim O’Rourke – to discuss the impact that being a fan has had on their writing.

Bring me my dragons: Writing fantasy today
With Frances Hardinge, Amy McCulloch, Jonathan Stroud and Ruth Warburton, chaired by Marc Aplin

With Game of Thrones and Lord of the Rings making fantasy increasingly popular in the mainstream, what does it mean to write fantasy for young adults today? Four authors who each take innovative approaches to the genre come together to discuss contemporary fantasy writing with blogger Marc Aplin.

Heroes of Horror
With Charlie Higson, Will Hill, Derek Landy and Darren Shan, chaired by Rosie Fletcher

Heroes of horror unite: Charlie Higson, Darren Shan, Will Hill and Derek Landy come together to discuss their work with SFX’s Rosie Fletcher.

How to get published
With Phil Earle and Sally Green, chaired by Ben Horslen (Penguin Books)

Join award-winning author and industry insider Phil Earle, and this year’s publishing sensation Sally Green for a panel discusison giving advice on getting published, chaired by Penguin Books editor Ben Horslen.

Crossover: Not just for kids
With Matt Haig, Anthony McGowan, Nick Lake and Meg Rosoff, chaired by David Maybury

With books like The Fault in our Stars and The Hunger Games being read as much by adults as they are by teens themselves, we investigate the phenomenon of so-called ‘crossover’ books. Award-winning authors Matt Haig, Meg Rosoff and Nick Lake, together with chair David Maybury, will discuss the appeal of young adult fiction for adults, and whether there are any books that are ‘just for kids’.

Holly Black & Sally Gardner in conversation
Bringing YALC to a close, this exciting event brings together superstar US author Holly Black with one of the UK’s biggest names in writing for children and teenagers, Sally Gardner, to discuss fairy-tales, magic and more with chair Jonathan Douglas.

LFCC


There’s also a ridiculous amount of good stuff going on at the film and TV convention including the Game of Thrones panel, and GILES (Anthony Head) and Drusilla (Juliet Landau) from Buffy in attendance….and PETER PETRELLI.

Ahhh too good! One more sleep! Maybe I’ll see some of you there?

Lazy Saturday Review: The One by Kiera Cass

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Title: The One
Series: The Selection #3
Author: Kiera Cass
Edition: Paperback, 323 pages
Published: Published June 5th 2014 by HarperCollins Children’s Books
Genre(s): YA; Dystopian; Romance
Disclosure? Nope, I bought it, obvs!

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For the four girls who remain at the palace, the friendships they’ve formed, rivalries they’ve struggled with and dangers they’ve faced have bound them to each other for the rest of their lives.

Now, the time has come for one winner to be chosen.

America never dreamed she would find herself anywhere close to the crown – or to Prince Maxon’s heart. But as the competition approaches its end and the threats outside the palace walls grow more vicious, America realises just how much she stands to lose – and how hard she’ll have to fight for the future she wants.

The breathtaking finale to THE SELECTION trilogy will make you swoon!

Oh man, it really did make me swoon. I cant help it, Maxon just does it for me, you guys. He’s cute, just the right amount of insecure but can be assertive and forthright when he needs to be, and hellooooo, about to be King. Hot!

The One was pretty much everything I wanted it to be. The relationship between Maxon and America was cute but not without its problems which is what has been so addictive about this whole series. At times I wanted to shout at them (OK, so I literally did) for moments of stupidity and letting situations and people get between them.

Throughout the series, I’ve found that the growing unease of the land of Ilea has been that extra something to what would otherwise be a throw-away teen romance story, and in book three it all comes to a head as we discover exactly what the rebellion is all about.

I feel like The One threw enough curve balls at me to keep me entertained but let’s face it, it could only end one way, right? It was more about the journey than the outcome for me, and it’s a journey that I want to revisit. Again and again.

I can only think of one thing that annoyed me about this book and that was Celeste. She was so horrible in the previous books but all of a sudden she was forgiven and became part of the girls’ group. Now, I’m all for forgiveness, and people can change, but it all happened a bit too quickly for my liking. Hey ho.

I’m sure I had loads of other things to say about it, but I was so sad it’s over that I couldn’t write a review initially, and now the feeling has passed along with my memory of it (I blame all the wine)…I’ll just have to read it again, shame.

With all of that being said, I couldn’t bring myself to give any of the books in this series 5 whole unicorns. Mainly because of what I like to think of as ‘The Trash Factor’. They’re silly and very cheesy and I love them, but I just can’t. The inner book-snob-who-likes-to-have-no-fun in me is trying to come out there…and I’ve tried so hard to torture her with teenage vamprire fiction over the years! Give up, already.

unicorn rating 4

The One is available now in paperback from Waterstones. You can get 10% off here.

Friday Feature: Fairest Fangirling!

OK, so I know I’m a few days behind with this news but I didn’t have a feature lined up for today, (I should be doing the final part of the Best Children’s Books of the Last 100 Years – but I’ve ran out of blogging time) and I just need to do some delayed fangirling for a second.

Earlier in the week Marissa Meyer released details of Fairest, a spin-off novel to the Lunar Chronicles dedicated to our favourite villain Queen Levana.

Ahhhhhhhhh. Fangirls unite: How awesome does this look?

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Mirror, mirror on the wall,
Who is the fairest of them all?

Fans of the Lunar Chronicles know Queen Levana as a ruler who uses her “glamour” to gain power. But long before she crossed paths with Cinder, Scarlet, and Cress, Levana lived a very different story – a story that has never been told . . . until now.

Marissa Meyer spins yet another unforgettable tale about love and war, deceit and death. This extraordinary book includes full-color art and an excerpt from Winter, the next book in the Lunar Chronicles series.

The only bad thing is that we have to wait until January next year. Noooooooooooooo!

Expected publication: January 27th 2015 by Feiwel & Friends (Hardback/Kindle/Audio)

Goodreads

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!

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Purchase

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

An Unfortunate Series of Events….AKA Fangirling Fail

Regular readers will know how excited I was to get my hands on The One (The Selection #3). Excited might be a bit of an understatement. I was gagging for it, fangirling over it, waiting for Maxon to arrive at my door, AND I’M STILL WAITING.

Let me tell you the story…

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The One, was due to be released on May 6th. I pre-ordered it from Amazon, mainly for ease and because I knew it would be cheaper than if I went to Waterstones (the only bookshop in town). Oh, and also because you could send off for a The One keyring with your pre-order receipt. Yes, I am 12 years old (I’m not really).

I knew it wouldn’t arrive on the day it was released. I expected that. But I did expect it the week later, at the latest. It did not arrive. I was sad.

I was even more sad that EVERYONE WAS POSTING REVIEWS OF IT (not that it’s you lovely people’s fault of course) and I had failed to even get a copy.

So I tracked my order.

Not Yet Dispatched, it said.

WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT! I said.

Expected Arrival Date: 17th June, it said.

WTAF, I yelled.

Cancel, I pressed. It will be in the shop, I thought. Amazon is clearly just being rubbish.

It was now about 10 days since The One was supposed to have been released. So I ventured into Waterstones. Nothing. I tried not to sound too distraught when I asked the nice Waterstones girl if they knew why it wasn’t in stock yet. She looked at me a bit weird when she typed it in, can’t blame her. I could pretend it’s for my imaginary 8 year old girl, I thought – it’s plausible – but I resisted.

It’s been pushed back, she said. It’s not out until June.

Wahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, I wailed inside. I probably shouldn’t have cancelled my Amazon order, I thought.

I was not happy. But what can you do.

So, America (the country, not the character!) and who ever else managed to get a copy, I hate you all. And I haven’t read any of your reviews in case there are spoilers.

But, you know what? IT’S ALL OK, because we are also getting a prequel!!! Eeeek. It’s not due until December, but clearly, I’m getting used to waiting for things!

There’s always a silver lining. Let the fangirling commence.

PrintBefore America Singer’s story began, another girl came to the palace to compete for the hand of a different prince….

Don’t miss this digital original novella set in the captivating world of Kiera Cass’s #1 New York Times bestselling Selection series. This prequel story takes place before the events of The Selection and is told from the point of view of Prince Maxon’s mother, Amberly. Discover a whole new Selection with this inside look at how Maxon’s parents met—and how an ordinary girl named Amberly became a beloved queen.

Friday Feature – Let’s Fangirl for a Second

I had a a proper post all planned out for today’s feature – with notes and everything – but then I saw that the cover reveal for Throne of Glass #3 came and went yesterday and it got me excited/distracted!

The ToG books, not to be confused with GoT which I kept calling it at first, is becoming one of my favourite series. I haven’t found them perfect reads by any means, but the protagonist Celaena Sardothien is so awesome I’d probably read about her painting her nails and still enjoy it! Not to mention how pretty they are…and you should all know by now that pretty book covers will eventually be my downfall.

So here are the two covers revealed on the Throne of Glass Fb page yesterday. They may be pretty similar but I still think we Brits get the better one! In your face America. Ahem.

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And while I’m in fangirl mode, guess what’s coming out in LESS THAN TWO WEEKS….

….THE ONE (The Selection #3), OBVS!

FINALLY!!!