Friday 28 February 2014

Books And Their Theme Songs - Volume 22

FIRST BOOKS AND THEIR THEME SONGS BLOG POST!!! So, let's start as we mean to go on. HERE'S THE MUSIC! I hope you enjoy the songs and "get" why their songs became my soundtrack to these reads...

RUBY RED by Kerstin Geir
"When The Darkness Comes" by Colbie Caillat & "Heart By Heart" by Demi Lovato

FROZEN by Melissa de la Cruz and Michael Johnston
"The Flood" by Cheryl Cole

THESE BROKEN STARS by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner
"Gravity" by Pixie Lott and "Young Blood" by Sophie Ellis-Bextor

UNBREAKABLE by Kami Garcia
"Howl" by Florence and the Machine & "Strange Days" by Bryan Ellis

"Once Upon A Dream" by Lana Del Rey

LEGEND by Marie Lu
"Bella Lugosi's Dead" by CHVRCHES

DIE FOR HER by Amy Plum
"The Deer And The Wolf" by Sophie Ellis-Bextor

Wednesday 26 February 2014

GoodRead - Die For Her

After reading Legend (review here!), I wanted to read something super fast and slightly romantic over the Valentine weekend before I dive head-first into Cress by Marissa Meyer and a few other reads. So it was this or Life Before Legend so I decided, impulsively, to read Die For Her.

Which might have been a bad move but am going to explain why in a tick.

Die For Her follows revenant Jules, best friend to Vincent, throughout the first two books within the Die for Me trilogy, Die for Me and Until I Die. As Vincent slowly falls for Kate, Jules worries for his friend and for his fellow revenants. But as he gets to know Kate, something happens to him that Jules doesn't see coming...

Ok, as I stated in the previous paragraph, this follows Jules through the first two books in twish he series, so if you haven't read the first two books in the series, AVOID! As I read the first and forgot to read books 2 and 3, I should have listened to fellow book bloggers advice a few months/years back when I bought this and NOT READ IT! FOOLISH MORTAL, I AM!

But, saying that, I really enjoyed reading this. I forgot how much I enjoyed reading Amy's writing. It was so easy for me to slip back into this world, even though I read Die For Me YEARS AGO (yes, years! I read Die For Me back in 2011 - so over 2 years ago!!!). And it's Paris - If you remember my review for Die For Me (review here if you haven't), I love Paris. Never been but I REALLY WANT TO GO! It's one of those places I want to go that's on my bucket list (Paris, Rome, New York to name three).

It made me wish I have read the whole series. Maybe I should run back and read the whole series. Or should I wait and scare Amy's new novel, After The End... Decisions, Decisions...

Monday 24 February 2014

Thursday 20 February 2014

When Should One Quit Reading THAT Book?

So, earlier this week, I started listening to an audiobook that I have heard very positive things over - Apple Tree Yard by Louise Doughty. Yesterday, after listening to under 3 hours of this audiobook (3 hours out of around 13 hours), I had to stop listening to it. I COULDN'T BEAR IT ANY MORE!!! I disliked the writing style, have serious hatred for the characters and, for a reason I don't understand, I didn't warm to the narrator.

And because of this decision, I began thinking about all the books/eBooks/audiobooks I have stop reading within a few chapters within 2014. And I have counted 1 true book which I have stopped reading because of hatred: Apple Tree Yard for the reasons I stated above (oh, believe me, I could easily go on a rant about that - just ask my other half). For the books I started but I wasn't in the right frame of mind to read, I have counted 3/4 (Frostbite by Richelle Mead, The Dead Girls' Dance by Rachel Caine and Witches of East End by Melissa de la Cruz from the top of my head [as I can't remember the fourth]) and there was one I nearly gave up on but Twitter ordered me to keep going (thanks for that, Twitter. Throne of Glass was ok once it got going. Let's hope Crown of Midnight is better than the first, like everyone seems to be saying...)

But that got me thinking: how long do you stick with a book before you stop reading it? Do you struggle on with a book even though you seriously hate/dislike it? Do you give yourself a page mark - say page 100? - before you decide to keep going or stop? Or do you do what literary agents do which is read the first 3 chapters and take it from there?

And what do you do with eBooks? Do you give it a certain percentage (20%? 25%? 15%?)? And then what do you do? Do you create a folder for those unfinished stories?

Leave what you do with books as I am really intrigued over what everyone does...

Monday 17 February 2014

SMILE - When People Tell Me I Have A Book Problem....

And I Regret NOTHING!!! 

SMILE - I Don't Like Problems...

How I am going to live my life now, me thinks...

THANK YOU GILMORE GIRLS! (and because I love you guys, let's show another Gilmore Girls gif, shall we?)

Thursday 13 February 2014

GoodRead - Legend

You've guys have caught up with me and my reading. CURSE YOU WORK!!! So, looks like the next few weeks/months/FOREVER, you guys will get my reviews on books as soon as I have finished the book. 

So, Legend. Legend was actually chosen by my other half. After reading Throne of Glass (Review here, by the way), I asked him to choose my next read. I like it when I don't have to pick my next read, and I seemed to be in a weird book slump mood. Nothing excited me! So, I was going to ask Twitter, but other half took over. He demanded a few random books and then he would choose one. And he choose Legend because of the "shiny cover". 

In Los Angeles, Republic of America, there's a boy and a girl. Day and June. They haven't met. And why would they? Day is a criminal and June is the Government's prodigy. When the plague hits a member of his family, Day decides to break into a hospital for a cure. This sets off a chain of events in which June's brother is killed and she vows to find his murderer. And all the evidence is point to Day... 

I am going to admit this: I knew very little about this. I know that might sound weird, but all I knew was the vaguest details (the synopsis on book and on some reviews), it's a trilogy and it's a dystopia (something I haven't read in a while because... well, I got sick of dystopian books and needed time away). That's it. So, I went into this kinda blind. 

And you know what? I was genuinely surprised how much I enjoyed reading this. 

I got caught up in the world and the pacing was great once June and Day actually meet. Before that, I felt it was a bit slow, but once they met, it was like reading a thriller with the fastness and the chapter point-of-views going back and forth. I liked reading from both their point-of-views (that's rare, I think. To like both characters equally) so I never felt like I had to rush back to a character as the other was boring it. There was always something happening and that kept me turning pages. 

I admit this now, the first few chapters were a tad slow for my taste. I just wanted them to meet and I wanted the fireworks! I wanted see how it would happen and the fall-out. And the relationship - I'm not 100% certain that I buy it. It feels a bit like insta-love. But this is a trilogy, so Marie could explore this in the next two books (and with the film rights bought by the team that bought us the Twilight Saga, I think the movie's in safe hands). 

I am surprised how much I enjoyed the mad ride. I do hope I get to read the second book in the series, Prodigy, soon. Not sure when, but I did accidentally buy the "prequel" eNovella Life Before Legend (stupid iPhone! I wanted "Try A Sample", not "Buy Now"!) soon. Am oddly looking forward to seeing what these characters were like before the events of Legend

Friday 7 February 2014

GoodRead - Throne of Glass

For some reason, everyone has suddenly seemed to be talking about this book in the BookTube community and after buying this and its sequel, Crown of Midnight, I decide to try this out and see what the fuss was about.

Celaene Sardothien was once one of the most feared assassins. But then she got caught and is serving a lifelong jail sentence down a saltmine. But one year in, she was made an offer by the Crown Prince. Be his Champion in a contest set up by his father, the King. If she can bet the other 23 champions, she will be the King's Champion and, within 4 years, she will have her freedom.

While she is at the castle made of glass, she will discover that there is an evil in the castle. An evil that is willing the kill the other champions. But evil wears many faces... And in the world where magic is outlawed and is gone from the world, is the evil man or something darker...

*takes a deep breath* Right, I want to make something clear here. This blog and all the reviews here are of my opinion. I feel like I have to stress this every now and then because I'm scared that how I write my reviews will be read one way when actually, it should be read another.

Ok, my thoughts on this. I think I'm in a state of book-grief because of These Broken Stars (and before that, Allegiant) so I feel like I might be a little harsh on this.

But am torn over this. After having problems with the first 20%, I slowly began to enjoy it. While I didn't love it, it was a nice read to past the time.

And yet, while I did like reading this, I found this book very frustrating! And because I kept getting frustrated with the characters (mainly Celaene who is so brilliant [aka she suffers from, what I call, the "Kay Scarpetta Syndrome", where the main character is perfect in nearly every way and it's annoying as hell]), there were times I felt reading this was hard work.

I know book 2 in the series is much better than the first - I have seen all you guys reviews and I trust you guys (and I got both books in the series in a Kindle Sale - 99p each!) and I am going to read Crown on Midnight sometime before the third book in the series, Heir of Fire (you can't fault these titles!) or the eNovellas collection, The Assassin's Blade.

But this book sits on the fence for me. Sorry guys for being vague on this review...

Monday 3 February 2014


I HAVE A COVER REVEAL FOR YOU GUYS! Well, that, a question/answer and a sneaky peek of Zoe Marriott's newest book, Darkness Hidden.

So, Walker is changing the covers to The Name of the Blade series. And as you guys know, The Night Itself was one of my fave books of last year. I adore it SO MUCH!!! So, I had to be involve with this reveal. IT WOULD BE A CRIME IF I DIDN'T!!!

So, without any further ado, here are the new covers to The Night Itself and Darkness Hidden!

TA-DAH!!! What do you guys think? I can't help but LOVE them! I now want to sit and nitpick over them for clues within the book/series.

BUT WAIT!!! I have more goodies for you. Zoe was very kind and answered one question for the blogs involved in this reveal (aka the awesome Winged Reviews, Serendipity Reviews, Readaraptor & Book Angel Booktopia!) and here is mine.

Question: Does the series has a theme song or several songs that really strike Zoe as perfect for the series as a whole?
Answer: The Name of the Blade series has its own weird and wonderful playlist. I create playlists for everything that I write and most of them are at least a couple of hours long. But because this is the first story I've written with a contemporary setting, it's very different. It's the first time that I've written to lots of contemporary, electronic music (rather than more high fantasy sounding, classical stuff). I was really trying to find a strong, modern voice for Mio and the right music helped with that. The main theme song for the series is The Girl in Byakkoya/White Tiger Field by Susumu Hirasawa from the anime film Paprika. When I was writing the first book I always sat and listened to it for a bit before I started work because it summed up the manic, intense, but slightly whimsical mood I was going for. Other songs that are significant are Vertical Storm - also by Susumu Hirasawa - Robyn's With EveryHeartbeat, and Alibi by 30 Seconds to Mars. The last two will make sense when you read the second and third books... *Evil Laughter*

BUT WAIT! I have one more thing! A tiny sneak peek, remember. And as all the blogs are doing a sneaky peek, if you want to read the sneaky peek in full, go to Winged Reviews first, then Serendipity Reviews, then Readaraptor then myself followed by Book Angel Booktopia. Got that? Good. Now, the sneaky peek! ENJOY!!!

“I was ready an hour ago,” Rachel said as she stomped forward.
Jack moved past me with Hikaru. They weren’t looking at each other, and Hikaru’s expression was forlorn. Shinobu and I followed, walking side by side but with a careful distance between us.
We’re all pathetic.
I could see the rift into the mortal realm taking shape on the grassy side of the little hill. Long streamers of blue lightning blew out of the earth, dancing in the air and then catching hold of others as they emerged, entwining to form a glowing wreath. When the ring of electricity was complete, the grass it encircled faded out of existence, leaving a gaping black hole in the slope.
Rachel walked right into the rift, leaving the bright light of the spirit realm for the darkness of Between without a backward glance.
Jack bit her lip. “This never gets any easier. I wish I could make my own fox lights.”
“You’re not the only one,” Hikaru whispered, so low that I thought only I heard him.
Did he mean that he wished Jack was a fox spirit, like him? Or just that he wished he were older and more powerful, able to control his lightning the way the others did? I had no way of knowing, and somehow I didn’t think he’d appreciate being asked.
Jack nodded a respectful goodbye to Araki, squared her shoulders, and stepped after Rachel. I moved forward, hyper-conscious of Shinobu silently shadowing me. My instincts were begging me to sneak a quick look at his expression, but the rest of me shied away in sheer embarrassment. I couldn’t understand why this was so hard.
“Farewell, sword-bearer,” the king said, appearing again – OK, that was getting freaky – on the crown of the hill overhead. “I wish you good fortune, and offer a piece of advice. Keep a close eye on your friend’s sister. She may have trying times ahead of her.”
Before I could ask what he was getting at, the king’s head snapped up. A deep shudder worked through his body, making his vast fan of tails lash the air; their white tips blazed into jagged blue cones of lightning. Araki took a step back, one hand flying up to cover her mouth.
“Grandfather?” Hikaru began uncertainly.
My katana shrilled – a fierce, high-pitched tone that vibrated along my vertebrae. Without thinking I reached back to grab the hilt, ready to draw the blade. My blood tingled and my heartbeat surged as my palm made contact with the silk wrappings. Then I froze. What am I doing? I whipped my hand away and stared at it for a moment as I flexed my fingers to confirm that they were under my control.
The ground jumped under my feet. Beyond Araki, the other side of the throne erupted with electricity. A new rupture. A small crowd of Kitsune – four of them, none older than a two-tails – stumbled out. They were ashen-faced and covered in dirt; one of them, splattered with blood, was clutching at her arm. She collapsed face-first into the grass and lay there, gasping for air and shaking with what looked like agony. The others hastily drew away from her.
Araki darted forward, falling to her knees beside the Kitsune girl. I saw with horror that the girl’s twin tails were withering, the lush reddish fur turning powdery grey and shredding off before our eyes. Horror turned to disbelief when the dignified Araki threw back her head and let out a terrible wail.
The Kitsune who had come through the rupture with the injured fox spirit picked up the note, their voices joining into a low, wavering keen of sorrow. The noise spread through the amphitheatre, celebrations dying away as the whole assembly of fox spirits fell still in the aching song of grief.
“What’s happening to her?” I cried out over the wailing. “Can’t someone help her?”
Hikaru didn’t even look at me. He lifted his face to the canopy of trees above and howled.
I felt Shinobu’s hand grasping mine, trying to pull me towards the rift. I shook my head, yanking free. I couldn’t leave. They needed help!
The king’s tails flicked in my direction. It was as if a massive hand had scooped me up and tossed me straight at the waiting blackness of the open rupture. I tumbled inside. Shinobu landed half on top of me with an Oof.
“Wait!” I shouted, struggling to get up.
It was too late. The light had vanished and the rupture closed.

The Kitsune Kingdom was gone.

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