Saturday 31 March 2012

Once Upon An Twitter...

This might be classed as a brilliant idea. Or a stupid idea. Or an insane idea. But, here goes...

This Sunday, the UK TV station, Channel 5, will be revealing the much-hyped and highly anticipated US drama, Once Upon A Time. I, for one, am very excited about the show. So, to randomly celebrate it, I am going to do a Tweet-A-Long to the pilot episode (I'm not doing this every week! This is a one-off!).

I sure we all have updated our Facebook, Twitter & Tumblr at shows and their plot twists and I thought I would, for a laugh, tweet my reactions to the show and answering the question we all asked: Does this show live up to the hype?

I thought, as a laugh, I would watch one of the videos Channel 5 have revealed in the run-up and give you a taster of what I had planned...

8 Seconds: "Sorry I'm late." You're not sorry. If you were, you would have sneak in, mouthing the words "Sorry! Sorry! Sorry!"
13 Seconds: Not sure about the special effects, but am loving the music. Will this be out on CD/iTunes soon?
23 Seconds: Badass Snow White!
36 Seconds: "I will not let you ruin this wedding." But she has! She just burst in! Plus, she is the "Evil" Queen...
47 Seconds: "But you shall have it." Because you forgot to get a gift receipt?

I'm not saying my tweets will be like this. More likely, they will be full of flirting, questions, screaming at the telly, and small (maybe not funny) jokes about a situation.

But I do hope you can join me. My Twitter is @PewterWolf13 and I shall (hopefully) start tweeting just before 8pm BST. If you can't make it, don't worry. I plan to put the tweets on the blog after the show.

So, hopefully, I will see you there tomorrow! Have a magical weekend!

Thursday 29 March 2012

GoodRead - 172 Hours On The Moon

When I was told about this at the Atom Books Blogger Event last year, I got quite excited about it as it sounded so different to my normal reads. Plus, we were told that this was a chiller of a book (as I want to read books that are creepy/scary, this sounded up my street).

NASA is throwing a lottery of a lifetime. It is offering the chance for three teenagers to get a seat on a shuttle to go back to the moon. The first shuttle to return to the moon in over forty years.

So when Mia, Andrel and Midori win the chance of the lifetime (each with their own reasons to go to the moon), none of them realise that there was a reason why NASA hasn't returned to the moon in over forty years, and neither do they realise that they might not get the chance to return home...

Now, this won a huge award in native homeland of Norway (and with our sudden appetite for translation [eyes on The Killing and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo]), will this book get the same attention?

Well, this book is a strange creature. I'm going to be truthful. This is hard to think about review as this is an odd creature. As a translation, I do like it. It didn't feel jarring to read so hats off to the translator of this book!

And this book has an odd grit to it which, for me, fall for this book. It was the sense of foreboding, where you know something awful is going to happen with the prologue and the chapters that follow the mysterious Mr Himmelfarb. But it's not till we get to the moon when things slowly begin to unravel and go, "Oh!"

This isn't an instant chiller read. It takes its time and, for me, it wasn't till the last 100-odd pages (and me reading this quite late one night) before things really began to get creepy. But it's the sense of foreboding that makes you keep turning the pages. You know something awful is going to happen, but you keep turning the pages, going "Please don't let him/her who's next... Not them..."

It might not be the instant chiller read I wanted, but I do like this book, and I hope Atom gets more translation for YA readers (for I think we're a smart bunch!). It became creepy and it's refreshing to read a book that takes it's time before it pulls the rug from under you. You might not want to read the moon chapters late at night, though... And you might not want to go to the moon after reading this...

Sunday 25 March 2012

Smile - Another Sunday Edition

For the last 40-odd minutes, I have been scheduling some SMILE posts (I really should be reading as I have two reviews and that's it! And one of those I can't review till May so... yep...). It was only going to be a small thing, but I went mad on images that I thought would make the next few Monday mornings start off with a smile, hence why I have done it.

I started with in mid-May (I work usually two months ahead of myself when it comes to Smile). I am now in August with one post scheduled in October (Halloween) and two more in December (Christmas). And I blame all of my pals who have tumblrs. ALL YOUR FAULT! But thank you for making me laugh for the past hour or so with stupid, funny and wonderful images!

Am backing away from computer now, with the following picture [taken from the Epically Funny tumblr.] Hope you all had a nice weekend!

Thursday 22 March 2012

GoodRead - Bloodrose

Calla has always welcomed war. But now, the stakes are higher than anything she has ever faced, and even she is unready for this fight. And the situation keeps gets more complex. How will Shay, the forbidden love she fleed her former masters (the Keepers) for, react when she rescues Ren, her former flame and the man she was meant to be alpha with? How can she save her brother when he is so broken from the Keepers ripped out his wolf and destoryed it, and killing their mother? Will Shay and her new allies, the Searchers, get all four swords to create the Elemental Cross that will put this war to an end? And, when the final battle comes, who will survive? And who will Calla choose to be her mate… that is, if she herself survives, and she's not even sure of that fact any more…

The price for love has never been higher.

As you guys should know (or be a little aware), I ADORE Andrea Cremer since I got my hands on that shiny ARC of Nightshade (from my first EVER blogging event at Atom Books HQ! So, if you have a copy, you understand…). And since then, have read and devoured her books at a stupid speed. Whenever Atom have sent me a copy of her books, I have always reacted in the same way: very very excited, and tweeting/emailing my thank yous.

So, from the above paragraph, you must suspect that I had high expections for Bloodrose. And I did, but I always trusted the author to know what she was doing. I did that with big books (like Harry Potter, Twilight, Hunger Games, etc). I want an certain ending (like most fans), but I also trust the author completely. I know that they will give me an ending that will leave both of us happy/heart-broken. If I don't get my ending, that's fine as I know the author gave an ending that they wanted/knew that the story needed.

So… the book. Did it live up to my expeditions? Did it, like Nightshade and Wolfsbane, suck me in and want me rooting for Calla?

One big word answer: yes. This book was non-stop action and you kept going at a stupidly fast pace. It was almost a breathless read. Now, I know some of you guys are going to find it too much an action read and wish there was moments where it stopped and took a breath, but with some people classing Wolfsbane as the "info-dump" book, it kinda balances out. And Andrea's writing is wonderful. I can't fault it.

And as for the ending - right, people are saying it's quite "surprising". Even the author said that it might surprise some readers. But, after reading it, it made sense to me why the ending that to be that. It might have felt a bit out of the blue, but Andrea laid down the clues through the book. You just have to look for them. But I sense that some readers might think it's too "neat", but it's fits with all the characters...

When I did finish the book, I was mixed on how I felt. I wasn't sure if I was going to be emotional because I was leaving a world and characters behind that I enjoyed and loved (and the last few chapters were emotional), or if I want to grab something sharp (a pencil or a basilik fang) and stab the book, cursing her to hell as I wasn't ready to leave this world (and we're not. The UK publisher, Atom, has confirmed that they are going to publish the prequels, Rift & Rise in the future).

So, yeah. I love this book. I love this trilogy. I love this author and I want her book children. And now, I'm off to mourn this trilogy and annoy Atom by asking/demand information on Rift. I want it now! I'm not 100% ready to leave this world behind. Not just yet…

Monday 19 March 2012

SMILE - Fluffy Kitty Chasing Laser!

Look at this guy's reflexes round the 12 seconds mark! (I wish my cat would move this fast...)

Friday 16 March 2012


As you guys know, I loved THE NAME OF THE STAR by Maureen Johnson (here's my review!) as it was dark, twisted and utterly creepy. And earlier this evening, Maureen revealed (via her tumblr) the UK cover to the second book in her SHADES OF LONDON trilogy, THE MADNESS UNDERNEATH:

Do you guys like it? Surprisingly, I warm to this cover more than NAME OF THE STAR! I love the red. I love the creepiest of the shadowy model and the stairs. And, though I'm not 100% sure on the girl model, I prefer her in this. And, to most of you guys relief, there's no sign of butterflies & moths.

But do you guys like the UK cover? And are you guys excited over this book (rumoured to be out at the beginning of 2013 - SUCH A LONG WAIT!)

Thursday 15 March 2012

GoodRead - Wither

I've been itching to read this for a while before Wither was published in the UK. But then I read some bad reviews and that made me unsure of reading it. And then Amazon had their 12 Days of Kindle Sale after Christmas and this was on it. And I got excited over it. 99p for a book that I was unsure of - BARGAIN! And then, a few weeks ago, I wanted a read something on my Kindle and I decide (because the title wouldn't leave my brain) to read Wither as I read an ARC of Garth Nix's A Confusion of Prince (which I can't review till the end of April...)

In the not so distant future, the world is a very different place. A virus (aka DNA engineering) has a horrifying effect on the young. All boys die at the age of 25 and girls die at the age of 20, and the "first generation" grow old and watch their children and grandchildren die an early death.

Rhine is sixteen. She has four years left to live. When she is kidnapped and sold into a polygamous marriage, all Rhine can think is escape. But trapped in a mansion with her bride-sisters (each with their own reasons to become a bride), a husband that is hopelessly in love with her (and yet whose feelings she can't return), the house master who seems dangerously in control of everything and a servant who she is growing attached to, Rhine is desperate to escape and return to her twin brother. But will she?

Now, I can sense some of you guys going "You haven't read this till now?" and yes, I am slow but I am quite surprised over it and am glad I didn't read it when it first came out with my high expectations as I would have been disappointed. This isn't your typical dystopian novel.

Whereas most dystopia is fast pace and has everything thrown at you (including the kitchen sink), Wither is different. It's slower in pace and takes its time over characters, atmosphere and the world we have found ourselves in. And while I know some of you guys are going "But Rhine takes A YEAR to plot her escape!", it doesn't feel like that as the use of language in the story sweeps you along. It's a bit like The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey as both authors have a way with words that, while the story is slow and takes its time, you get taken with it and you don't question it.

It's an interesting view of control and victims. And I liked how, we're in this beautiful mansion, we discover it through Rhine's eyes and over the course of the book, how it's a prison and there's not a single bar in sight.

Now, as most of you are aware, this book tackles polygamist marriage, and while I felt the Virus was explained, this I didn't understand. I didn't get why this happened and it wasn't explained. If it was, I completely missed it.

Now, I quite like Wither and am intrigued over where Lauren DeStefano takes Rhine in Fever as I have read some of my Book Blogger pals reading this and going "Well, this is unexpected!". Am also intrigued over the short story prequel, The Seeds of Wither, as it tells more about the first wife, Rose. She was a character I wished I knew more. PLEASE HARPER COLLINS!

Tuesday 13 March 2012

Surprise Fever Contest!

SURPRISE AGAIN! I have another contest for your guys!

This time, I am giving away a copy of FEVER by Lauren DeStefano, the sequel to WITHER (my review of Wither will be up this coming Thursday, FYI! And my review of Fever will be either this month or next [as I haven't read my copy yet!]).

After the events of Wither, Rhine has managed to escape her forced polygamous marriage, with Gabriel, the boy who she is slowly falling in love with. As the pair try to reach Rhine's twin brother, Rowan, in Manhattan, they both fall fowl of a carnival whose ringmistress has twisted plans for them. And both can't seem to escape Rhine’s father-in-law, Vaughn, who is determined to bring Rhine back... by any means necessary. Will Rhine escape both the carnival and Vaughn? And at what cost?

If you want to win the second book in the Chemical Garden trilogy, all you have to do is fill in the form below, which will ask for your name, email and Twitter. This is a UK only contest (sorry, but remember, I have plans for you!) which will be open till 7.30pm on Friday 16th March. Later that evening, I will be emailing the winner for details and, if the winner replies quickly, will put in post the following morning!


Wednesday 7 March 2012

Chris Priestley’s Blog Tour

Today, Chris Priestley is taking over my blog as part of his Mister Creecher blog tour! Here, he chats about his top five Frankenstein-inspired movies! So, I'll hand it over to Chris...

The top five Frankenstein inspired movies
Cinema and television played a huge part in my development as a writer. In the case of horror fiction, I was encouraged to read the book because of the movies they had inspired, whether it be Dracula or Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde or The Masque of the Red Death. Here is a list of my top five Frankenstein inspired movies:

The 1931 James Whale directed movie is an extraordinary creation by any measure. It does owe a debt to Fritz Lang’s Metropolis from five years earlier, and even to The Golem of 1920, but they are cold in comparison. It is Karloff’s performance that makes this movie unforgettable and that has make Frankenstein’s monster part of our modern mythology.

Bride of Frankenstein
James Whale’s second visit to Mary Shelley’s novel was a lot stranger than his first and all the better for it. It also features a wonderful double performance by Elsa Lanchester as both Mary Shelley in the prelude and the bride. Now of course, if she was betrothed to anyone, it was the creature not his creator, and in the novel Frankenstein destroys his work before he brings it to life, but as with his first movie, James Whale’s lack of respect for his source material produces something a little bit wonderful.

Blade Runner
Frankenstein is the godfather of all rebel robot and android movies. Mary Shelley was playing with the issues around what it means to be human a long time before Philip K Dick wrote his novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? (filmed as Bladerunner by Ridley Scott). It also owes a debt to Metropolis (by way of Film Noir), but the famous dying speech by Rutger Hauer’s android before he dies seems to have something of the pathos and Romantic grandeur of Mary Shelley’s creature.

Terminator 2
The Terminator franchise also owes a debt to Frankenstein, of course (and what a great creature Schwarzenegger would have made) - but Terminator 2 deals more directly with some of the issues in Mary Shelley’s novel: about the arrogance of scientists and the unseen and potentially catastrophic consequences of invention. This James Cameron movie - teaming a teenager with the Terminator - was very much in my mind when I wrote my latest book, Mister Creecher.

Edward Scissorhands
Edward is a composite creature - like the creature in the movies of Frankenstein (although Mary was vague about how the creature was created in her novel). Tim Burton is always fascinated by the bizarre and the freakish and this fascination, as it is here, is usually sympathetic. Edward’s scissor-hands change from a disability to the means of creating beauty. A monster movie with a happy ending.

Tuesday 6 March 2012

GoodRead - Our Kind of Traitor (Audiobook)

I got this for free with the Guardian newspaper. Because it was free! No other reason! It was free and unabridged so I got it. I never listened to it till recently when I started temping and I was allowed to use my iPod (hence my recent addiction to The Archers!)

Young couple Perry and Gail go to a tennis holiday in Antigua. There, they meet and play against a Russian called Dima, who they later discover is "the world's number one money launderer" (according to Dima himself). What happens on the holiday effects both Perry and Gail and they must talk to British Intelligence...

I'm not going to lie to you. I have never read any of John le Carre's books nor have I watched any TV shows/films based on his works. So I had no idea what to expect. What I got was... well... not my cup of tea. It was dull at times!

I liked the fact that this showed that spying wasn't all excitement and explosions as we see or read about in James Bond or Jason Bourne. It was nice to read that British Intelligence is quite paperwork-driven.

However, this book fell flat! I had trouble liking the main characters. Several of them got on my nerves (for example, Dima spoke about himself in the third person, kept saying "I am Dima. The world's number one money launderer!" or "I love you!". I found these HIGHLY irritating!).

And the ending - WHAT THE HELL?! That wasn't an ending! That felt like the author just couldn't be bother to write any more so stopped. He gave no closure to any of the characters and I found it incredible hard to like the story once I heard the ending!

The reader - Michael Jayston - was good and kept the story going, but I'm sorry. I just didn't like this as much as I thought I would and I feel a bit let down!

Sunday 4 March 2012

Cover Reveal for NIGHTSHADE Prequel!

As you guys know, I love the Nightshade trilogy/Witches' War trilogy by Andrea Cremer (am reading Bloodrose now and will review later this month!). Now, Bloodrose has only just been published in the UK and the cover to the prequel, Rift has been revealed on the US site, Hollywood Crush.

And here it is:

Now, this is the US cover. I'm not sure if the UK publisher of this series, Atom, are publishing this (I will check and let you know!). But Andrea Cremer has revealed that Rift and its sequel, Rise will be set in the 16th century and will be a "complex, compelling tale of love and betrayal lay at the heart of the Witches' War".

Excited? I am!

Saturday 3 March 2012

Cover Reveal of The Pledge Book 2!

Earlier today, Kimberly Derting (author of the awesome Body Finder series) revealed the title and the cover for the second book in The Pledge trilogy.

This is the US cover (I state this as the UK publishers of The Pledge, Allison & Busby, have a different cover design) and it's red! I like this alot and I can't wait to actually read The Pledge (I lent it to the PIW. I hope he's liking it...)

What are your reactions?

Friday 2 March 2012

Cover Reveal of Matched Book 3!

In an exclusive interview, Ally Condie revealed the title and the cover to the third and final book in her Matched trilogy.

So, what do you guys think? I like the shattered red glass sphere. But I'm not sure about the model as there's something a tiny bit plastic about her. But I think that, when I see it in real life, I will love it.


SURPRISE! And this is a surprise indeed as I planned to do this contest when I reviewed John Green's THE FAULT IN OUR STARS (which I am now thinking will be read now in April or May - such a bad nerdfighter).

So, thanks to my lovely US pal Sasha (aka FzngWizbee) who sent me these, one lucky UK Winner (sorry international readers! But I have plans for you...) will win a hardback copy of John Green's PAPER TOWNS and Melissa Anelli's HARRY, A HISTORY!

PAPER TOWNS asks the question how is the real Margo? And HARRY, A HISTORY follows the Harry Potter fandom from the webmistress of the Leaky Cauldron.

Now, if you want to win both these books, enter by filling in the form below. You have till Monday 5th March at 5.30pm. The winner will be randomly selected by and will be emailed later that evening. GOOD LUCK!!!

Thursday 1 March 2012

GoodRead - Lenobia's Vow

I've only read two House of Night novels - the first two - but I have read the previous Novella, Dragon's Oath, and I quite like that. I think I prefer the idea of the novellas better as I like getting more info about characters.

And here, the second House of Night novella follows Lenobia before she became a vampyre as she, pretending to be her dead half-sister, set sails to the New World of America. But a bishop, skilled in the dark arts, is also on the ship making the jounrey. And he has an eye for beautiful young women, meaning that Lenobia has to hide. On one of her rare early morning walks, she discovers the ship's stables, where a handsome young man, Martin, and his horses. But will Lenobia make it to America without the bishop discovering her? And what would happen if he does?

Now, as I'm not a House of Night fan, but I do quite like this. It's a fast read that most fans of the series will be jumping up and down to read this!

And the drawings used at the start of each chapters are, like in Dragon's Oath, very lovely!

According to my research searching, this is to fill the months before the next House of Night book, Hidden (the tenth book in the series that's out later in the year) & it has been confirmed that there will be two novellas, Neferet's Curse and the fourth (rumoured to be released between the penultimate and finale books in the series [book 11 & 12]) about the character, Kalona.

As I said before, a must for House of Night fans.