Sunday 29 December 2019

Counterplots Can Be Dangerous

This is going to be my last post of 2019! And what a nice post to have as this is part of the blog tour for Dai George's The Counterplot, an Audible Original!

The Counterplot follows Ben Johnson, a contemporary to Shakespeare in London 1603. But Ben has fallen on hard times and in desperation, writes a satirical play. Only for it to backfire hugely and he finds himself in prison with his reputation in ruins.

When he finally leaves jail, he decides to return to his estranged wife, Anna. But Anna isn't the same woman Ben left when he went out to seek his fortune. His absence and the deaths of their three children has led Anna to become friends with some very passionate Roman Catholics. Scared for his wife, Ben becomes entangled with these people and their dangerous plan to overthrow the King. The Gunpowder Plot is brewing...

If you want more details about this audiobook, check it out on (of course) Audible, but I am thrilled to welcome the author, Dai George on the Pewter Wolf with a small Q&A. No spoilers, but hopefully, these questions and answers will wet your appetite!

Before I hand you over to our Q&A, want to thank Dai for finding time to answer these (this time of year is insane!) and a small thank you to Anna at Midas PR for asking if I wanted to be involved in this tour. Now, if you want to say hi to Dai, check him out on Twitter at @dai_r_george!


Thursday 19 December 2019

Audiobook Review - The Twisted Tree

  • Title And Author: The Twisted Tree by Rachel Burge
  • Publisher: Hot Key Books
  • Physical, eBook or Audiobook: Audiobook
  • Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Borrowed from local library via BorrowBox
  • Length: 256 Pages or 6 Hours 41 Minutes

This might be my last review/write-up of 2019! It depends how fast I can finish my current read (unless I finish it prior to this weekend). Anyway, back story. I went the to the Hot Key Blogger Launch to The Twisted Tree earlier this year at the publisher and we were all intrigued by this. A ghost story with hints of Norse mythology? Sign me up!

But I kept putting this off. So, in the end, when I saw the audiobook version on the BorrowBox app (in connection with Essex Libraries), I requested it and listened to this over the course of several days at work.

Ever since the accident, Martha can sense things. She can tell things about a person by touching their clothes. Their emotions, memories, regrets, all soaked into the fabric. Trying to come to terms with this new, unsettling gift and how the accident left her blind in one eye, Martha goes to her grandmother - Mormor - house in Norway. But when she gets there, she finds that her Mormor is dead and a runaway is living in her cabin. Not only that but something is outside the cabin, waiting… and all the while, the Twisted Tree is watching. Watching and waiting…

Wednesday 18 December 2019

Audiobook Review - Wolf-Speaker

  • Title And Author: Wolf Speaker by Tamora Pierce
  • Publisher: Harper Voyager
  • Physical, eBook or Audiobook: Audiobook
  • Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Borrowed from local library via BorrowBox
  • Length: 256 Pages or 6 Hours 31 Minutes

Last year, I went through a huge blitz of getting advance reader copies of Tamora Pierce’s novels via NetGalley. And I only read Wild Magic. I liked it (will put link to my write-up here) and I had plans to read the second and third (Wolf-Speaker and Emperor Mage) in the series soon after as I got them as well as her newest novel, Tempests and Slaughter. And I somehow didn’t get round to it. I just lost track of time. Earlier this year, I audiobooked First Test, the first in another quartet by her, Protector of the Small (link for that is here). After audio booking and again, liking it, I decided that if I want to continue with that series, I really should try and finish the ARCs I have and, maybe even completing the series somehow.

But it’s been nearly a year, could I pick up the story of how Wild Magic ended and Wolf-Speaker begun…?

Daine has wild magic. She can talk and sway the actions of animals. So when Daine is summoned by a pack of wolves who saved Daine’s life years ago, she goes without thinking, taking her mentor, the legendary mage Numair. They travel to the Dunlath Valley, but both are shocked at the danger that awaits them. The animals and humans of the valley’s lives are in danger as the valley’s rulers have been blinded by greed and power, and they plans to overthrow the king must be stopped at all costs…

Sunday 15 December 2019

The Extract From The Red Book

I have a slight sidestep for you today as I have an extract for you!

I know! What kind of monster am I?!

Now, most times I've quite wary of doing extract, but when I heard the premise of this from Faye, who emailed and asked I wanted to be involved in this tiny blog tour, I was very intrigued by it. And I like to be intrigued when it comes to my reading and with what I want to share on the Pewter Wolf. So, let's chat The Red Book by Davide Cortellucci.

Martin's life is going to be turned upside down through a series of accidentally and not-so-accidentally coincidences. Soon, he found a group of people who can help him enhance the power of his own thoughts to modify the physical world around him. Which is cool, right? Expect that now Martin understands why he's flooded with negative feelings and energy when he's close to certain people, and he's not carefully, everyone around him and himself will cease to exist...

Now you see why I said I was intrigued by this...

Now, before I hand you over to the extract, I just want to thank Faye for asking if I wanted to be involved in this tour and saying "Ok" when I asked for an extract.

Now, over to the extract!!!

Thursday 12 December 2019

#re3 Audiobook Review - Shadow and Bone

  • Title And Author: Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
  • Publisher: Orion
  • Physical, eBook or Audiobook: Audiobook
  • Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Borrowed from local library via BorrowBox
  • Length: 352 Pages or 8 Hours and 55 Minutes

This is the third time I have read or attempted to read it. The first was back into 2013 and I liked it. But there was something “meh” about it. Something three stars about it and something that held me back from continuing the series. I, then, tried to reread it earlier this year (June?) as I was, very kindly, given by the publisher an eBook copy to celebrate the release of King of Scars. I did try and I struggled. I got to about 38% then went “I’m done”. Rewind to a few weeks ago, I was playing around on my BorrowBox app and, even though I have several audiobooks I really should be listening to or thinking about requesting due to my commitments to NetGalley titles and publishers, I saw this and went “Maybe if I audiobook it, I might fine it easier to get into…”

Hence, that’s what I’ve done. I audiobooked it over the course of 3 days at work.

Alina Starkov is a simple map-maker, an orphan and refuge so when her army regiment is taken into the Shadow Fold to cross Ravka, yes, she is scared. Because the once great nation is torn in two due to the Fold, darkness that is filled with creatures that feast on human flesh. And no-one, not even the powerful Grisha or their leader, the Darkling, can defeat it. 

So when her regiment is attacked in the Fold and her best friend, Mal, is brutally injured, Alina does something no-one, not even herself, expects. She reveals a dormant power of bring forth light. This power could be the key to saving her war-torn country. And because of this, she is snatched away from everything and everyone she knows into the lavish world of Grisha court and the royal court to train and control her power. 

But not everything in this new world is what it seems and Alina must be careful when it comes to the secrets of the Grisha and the secrets of her own heart…

Monday 9 December 2019

Audiobook Review - Flying Too High

  • Title And Author: Flying Too High by Kerry Greenwood
  • Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press/C&R Crime
  • Physical, eBook or Audiobook: Audiobook
  • Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Borrowed from local library via BorrowBox
  • Length: 236 Pages or 5 Hours and 2 Minutes 

Another audiobook that I listened to while during Believathon (I really should have prepped myself much better but I had to wait till it was available), and it’s another cosy crime. I seem to enjoy reading/audiobooking crime stories, as long as I click with it. 

And after listening to my first Phryne Fisher mystery - Murder on the Ballarat Train - back in October, I wanted to do another. I was torn between this, the second in the series, or Death at Victoria Dock, the fourth. This came available first so nabbed that. 

Phryne Fisher likes a thrill. Flying a Tiger Moth plane and walking the wings of one in full flight should be enough excitement for some people, but not Phryne. Now becoming a private investigator, Phryne finds herself involved in trying to solve a murder, save a child from kidnapping, all while having young, attractive men at her door… Sometimes, a woman’s work is never done.

Thursday 5 December 2019

Audiobook Review - Daisy Jones And The Six

  • Title And Author: Daisy Jones and the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid
  • Publisher: Cornerstone
  • Physical, eBook or Audiobook: Audiobook
  • Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Borrowed from local library via BorrowBox
  • Length: 335 Pages or 9 Hours 3 Minutes

Ok, before I go further, want to state that I listened to this last month while doing Believathon so, I decided to put this up now so I don’t get muddled. So, December is going to be a bit of a mixed-bag of books/audiobooks from when I read/listen to them. Plus, with Christmas and New Year round the corner, am going to squeeze them in as much as possible, so sorry in advance for the blog post overload. 

Now, we have housekeeping out of the way, Daisy Jones. As you know, I audiobooked The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo and thoroughly enjoyed myself with it. I'm thinking of relistening to this in the New Year. And I audiobooked Evidence of the Affair and I liked that a lot. So, going into this, I was excited that it would make a good, if not great, read. Plus, everyone I know who had read this has loved it, so high hopes. 

In the 1970s, Daisy Jones and the Six were rising stars in the rock n roll scene! Their album, Aurora, is rising high in the charts and their tour is selling out. Then, on 12th July, 1979, the seven break up, halfway through their tour. But no one knows why… 

Who knows the truth of what happened that day and the events leading up to it? Daisy Jones, the brilliant songwriter but high functioning drug addict? The egotistical Dunne brothers who control everything the band does? The angry guitarist? The binge-drinking dummer? The Bassist looking to the future? The keyboardist who won’t fit into her gender role? Or the frontman’s wife, who knows that one wrong step from her husband can result in him falling off the wagon or that the connection between him and Daisy is electric? 

There’s never one side to the truth.

Tuesday 3 December 2019

Believathon 2019 - Le Belle Sauvage

  • Title And Author: La Belle Sauvage by Philip Pullman
  • Publisher: Penguin/David Fickling Books
  • Physical, eBook or Audiobook: Audiobook
  • Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Bought
  • Length: 546 Pages and 13 Hours 14 Minutes

It’s been a long time coming, hasn’t it? With me finally, FINALLY, getting my rear in gear and reading/audiobooking La Belle Sauvage, seeing how much I love the His Dark Materials trilogy and bought this as soon as I could. 

But I held off reading this. For the same reason I’m holding off watching the BBC/HBO adaption of the series - The Fear! I mean, we have been waiting for these FOR YEARS! What if, after all this waiting, they don’t live up to our exceptions?!

So, how/why did I decide to do it now? Well, the audiobook is the main reason. Plus, The Secret Commonwealth for another. OK, let me explain. The Secret Commonwealth has just come out in hardback and I would like to read that as Lyra is an adult in this and I want to return and see what’s happened to her and her daemon, Pan. Now, the audiobook. I returned an audiobook after an hour’s listening on Audible and they, very kindly, gave me a credit as a refund. So, I decided to grab this (as well as activate a Black Friday deal of getting an Audible Subscription with 4 months being only £3.99 [The offer is still going. I think it ends on Thursday 12th December aka UK General Election Day or Friday 13th, so go go! Just remember to cancel it before the price goes up to £7.99])

Anyway, La Belle Sauavge, the first volume in the Book of Dust series is a little different from what everyone was expecting. We thought this was going to follow after His Dark Materials. Nope. This takes place years BEFORE, when Lyra is only six months. 

Malcolm Polstead and his daemon, Asta, lives in the pub in Oxford by the river Thames. His life is fairly ordinary, even uneventful. But this winter, the rain won’t stop. Rumours of a flood are everywhere, and Malcolm finds himself near the centre of a battle between religion, science and politics, when he goes to the priory across the river and discover they are looking after a small six month baby called Lyra, daughter of Lord Asriel...

Saturday 30 November 2019

Believathon 2019 - Mary Poppins

  • Title And Author: Mary Poppins by P.L. Travers
  • Publisher: HarperCollins
  • Physical, eBook or Audiobook: eBook
  • Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Borrowed from Prime Reading
  • Length: 228 Pages

As I said in my previous post, I struggled then DNFed North Child. And because of that, it threw my reading plans out of the window. I wanted to read the Believathon group book, Frostheart by Jamie Littler. I then wanted to read my advance reader copy of Elizabeth and Katherine Corr’s Throne of Swans. I was so excited to read them. But after DNFing North Child, I decided that I didn’t want to go near these titles just yet. I wanted one or two titles, a bit left-field choices, for me to read. Something I can read fast and something I can switch my brain off too. One of these choices was the new James Patterson 19th Christmas. But the other was going to be something I can read FAST as Nanowrimo is still going on and I know that I’m not going to hit the 50,000 word as I’ve written my conclusion and am now tying up loose ends and thinking “I kinda want to write a sequel. I want to know what happens next to these characters.” 

So, when I remembered that I can “borrow” books from Amazon’s Prime Reading, I thought I would have a look at titles that I borrow and to check my memory. And I saw I could request the original Mary Poppins. So, borrowed that and started to read, deciding that this could be my last Believathon read...

We all know Mary Poppins. Disney used the original stories as inspiration for the movie, starring Julie Andrews, and we all know that PL Travers disliked the Disney adaptation so much that she demanded that no one who worked directly with the original to be involved in the sequel (hence why it took so long for Mary Poppins Returns to be made, even though both Disney and PL Travers both wanted a sequel to be made). 

So, Mary Poppins. The Bank family are desperate. Their nanny has worked out. Who will look after the four Banks children: Jane, Michael and the twins? Then, the mysterious Mary Poppins appears, as if blown in on the wind. Firm but fair, Mary Poppins brings magic into the children’s lives. But she will only stay till the wind changes…

Friday 29 November 2019

Believathon 2019 - DNFing North Child

I don’t normally talk about books I’ve DNF. I usually have the attitude of “This is my blog and I want you guys to discover books that make you happy, so I’m going to talk about books that I’ve read that make me happy.” and “Life is too short to read books that don’t work for you” (I shorten it in the past to “Life’s too short to read crap books” as a crap book for you could be a OMFG-I-Love-This-Book read). 

But this book I want to talk to you about for several reasons. One: I was reading it for the Believathon readaton. Two: I know you guys love this books and this proves my point that you should read widely when it comes to book bloggers/booktube/etc opinions as EVERYONE IS DIFFERENT AND HAS DIFFERENT TASTES AND OPINIONS!!! And Three: this book is interesting and I can see why this book didn’t work for me but could work for you, dear reader. 

So, North Child by Edith Pattou. Or East, if you live in the US. 

Quick summary of the book before I sink my teeth into chatting about it. 

Told from several points of view, we follow Rose, an unusual girl. She was born facing north and children born facing north travel far from home and will embark on a dangerous adventure. After she and her family make a pact with a enormous white bear, Rose finds herself travelling to a myserteous castle that holds a dark enchantment… and that’s not even half the story… 

This is a weird book and proves that different countries have very different attutides. In the UK, this book is called North Child and can be found the children/middle grade section of libraries and bookshops. In the US, this is called East and can be found in the YA section. But reading what I have read, I understand why the book is placed in both sections. 

Now, everyone I know in the book blogger/booktube world really likes this book and I completely get it. The writing is solid, the story is sweeping, everything about this is good. 

And yet… here I am. DNFing it and talking about it. Why? Because everyone has a different opinion and, you know what, that’s okay. It’s fine. We can get along nicely and be friends, right?

Ok, stay with me here as I’m kinda upset that I got to this realisation of DNFing (why is it I say I will be more brutal on DNFing stuff and sometimes, I am ruthless, and other times, it breaks my heart?). Because for the first few pages, I was on board. I was there! I saw what you all saw. 

But then, around the 250 page mark, something happened and I lost it. I got bored with it. The story dragged and I just couldn’t find the energy nor willpower to read it. I was shocked that a few days ago, I was invested with this story and these characters but now, now I just couldn’t bring myself to care. I was bored, oh so bored!

Maybe it’s my mood, I told myself. It has been stressful at work and I can’t settle to the audiobooks I requested from local library or I bought months ago. I just need time. And so, I kept reading, and that feeling was still there. 

Then, the weekend just gone, I sat down to read it. I got three pages in, then picked up Twitter and, after having a chat with a fellow book blogger who was curious to read, I went “Have mine.” and I felt ok doing that. I was fine DNFing it because someone else was going to read this and love this book as it’s more up their street than mine. 

And that’s ok. This didn’t work for me, but at least I tried to read it and at least I knew when to put the book down and get out. 

Although, I got out a little late. The next book I was planning to read was linked to a book event I’m going to in the next few weeks and, because of this, I don’t feel ready now to read it so, gonna pick up something else instead.

This is why you have to do you when it comes to reading. Reading should be a pleasure, it should be fun and you have to do you. If you want to read books to the end, do that. You want to read this or that and DNF something that doesn’t work for you, do it! Reading should be fun and you should do you. 

Tuesday 26 November 2019

Believathon 2019 - The Worst Witch Mini-Reviews

Sorry for my lack of write-up for my Believathon as the book I’m read (North Child by Edith Pattou) is taking a lot longer to read that I was expecting (meaning I’m not going to read the readathon’s group read - Frostheart by Jamie Littler - in time. Might try and read it over the Christmas Blog Break!). Plus, with Nanowrimo taking my time on the typing front and me listening to audiobooks that don’t really fit Believathon (so I’m putting those reviews/write-up’s up in December), I’ve kinda got myself a bit of a blog dip. 

So, SURPRISE! I have one big blog post over two The Worst Witch books! I have The Worst Witch All At Sea (the fourth in the series) and The Worst Witch and the Wishing Star (the seventh in the series). 

Hang on a moment. I need to put those blasted affiliate links up (do you use them? I’m curious on whether to keep them or only use one or two instead of four) 

  • Title And Author: The Worst Witch All at Sea and The Worst Witch and the Wishing Star by Jill Murphy
  • Publisher: Puffin
  • Physical, eBook or Audiobook: Audiobook
  • Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Borrowed from local library via BorrowBox
  • Length: 224 Pages for Worst Witch All at Sea, 208 Pages for Worst Witch and the Wishing Star or 2 Hours and 5/9 Minutes 

So, with that out of the way (do those links make sense? I hope so!), let me do a quick write-up on each. 

In The Worst Witch All at Sea, Mildred Hubble and her classmates have been given a special treat: a week by the seaside. But Mildred is upset over her cat, Tabby, behind left behind, so she sneaks him with her. And with that, trouble follows. 

In The Worst Witch and the Wishing Star, Mildred makes a wish on a shooting star and, to her surprise, it comes true! A dog is waiting for her, but how is she going to keep him - Star - a secret from everyone, especially the formidable Miss Hardbroom? And with the school entering a contest to win an indoor swimming pool, you know trouble is going to come when disaster-prone Mildred is about…

Wednesday 13 November 2019

Believathon 2019 - Spirit Walker

  • Title And Author: Spirit Walker by Michelle Paver
  • Publisher: Orion Children’s Books
  • Physical, eBook or Audiobook: eBook 
  • Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Bought 
  • Length: 320 Pages

My first Believathon read for this month! Who’s excited?! 

So, as you know from last month, I devoured the first book in the series, Wolf Brother, most of it on the plane to New York (link to my write-up is here!). I love this world and I made a decision that I will try and read each book in the series once a month in the lead-up to the newest book, Viper’s Daughter, being published in April 2020. 

So, here we are with book 2 of the Chronicles of Ancient Darkness series! 

Several months after the events of Wolf Brother, a strange sickness is creeping through the Stone Age Forest. It threatens the Raven Clan and after destroying the Bear with the aid of the World Spirit, Torak thinks he can find the cure. Word is that the Seal Clan has a cure and Torak decides to travel to them to find it…

Friday 8 November 2019

Superpowers Don't Always Make You A Hero

SURPRISE! I have a slight curveball for you guys today as it doesn't exactly fit with my Believathon reading of children's books, nor does it fit with my Nanowrimo! I HAVE A CONTEST FOR YOU GUYS!

Those lovely people at Electric Monkey and I got chatting on Twitter recently about the third and final book in the Monster trilogy, Hero. I admitted that I hadn't read this trilogy nor the previous series this follows, the Gone series (PUT THOSE PITCHFORKS AND TORCHES DOWN!) but I wanted to do something as I know some of you guys LOVE this series. "Could I host a small contest or something for Hero?" I ask and they replied, stupidly fast, "Why not do a contest for the whole trilogy?"

So, dear reader, I am hosting a small contest where one winner will win the entire MONSTER trilogy!

Now, before I go any further, let me chat what this series is about. Set after the dramatic conclusion of the Gone series, we follow Shade who witness the dome coming down, thinking that it would be the end of the troubles. How very wrong everyone was. Shade swears to never feel powerless again and then, four years later, she finds part of the meteor that began it all and discovers that she is changing, mutating...

And that's where the real troubles begins...

Actually, let me throw this book trailer up. That might explain better than me!

So, to co-inside the release of the final book in the trilogy, Hero, Electric Monkey is letting me do a contest where one winner will win the entire MONSTER trilogy!

Now, before I go any further with rules (it's been a while since I've held a contest on the Pewter Wolf so bear with me), I do want to say that I have been told this trilogy does come with trigger warnings for violence.

Ok, now the rules/boring stuff. To enter the contest, you need to fill in the GoogleForm below. This is a UK address only contest and the contest will close on Friday 15th November 2019 at 7pm! The winner will be chosen at random using, and then will be announced on Twitter. The winner will, then, be emailed by me to get their address so Electric Monkey can send them out! And don't worry - once all that's done, all info will be deleted.

All good? Any questions, pop me an tweet/email and will answer the best I can. All that is left to say is GOOD LUCK and may the odds ever be in your favour.

Tuesday 5 November 2019

Believathon & NaNoWriMo 2019

Ok, so my plans for November 2019 have changed hugely from what I decided a few months ago when I was trying to get myself all organised for Christmas. 

So, the plan was to make November my NetGalley month - NetGalley November. NetGalley, for those of you not sure on the term, is a site publishers use for reviewers, booksellers, bloggers and librarians can read digital proofs/Advance Reader Copies (ARCs, if you want the shorthand) before or at release of the book. Now, I have used this site for years and my TBR (To Be Read) on it is a little out of control. I did a cull and sort out so it isn't as bad as it once used to be. But it is still out of hand. So, I did plan to do a month and tackle the heck out of it. 

Then, the announcement of Believathon came along... 

I am not going to tell you want it is as the host, booktuber Gavin will explain. But, if you want me to explain it, it's a month of reading children's/middle grade books. And as someone who reads Young Adult and is slowly branching into Adult, this sounded like fun! 

So, my reading plans have changed for November. I did read something, but it doesn't fit the themed reading month so I decided to put the review up on my Goodreads, if you want to read that! So, my month of blogging is a bare for next week or so, as I like to be ahead of self and I didn't get the chance to do so. 

And, at the same time of doing that, I randomly decided that I'm going to attempt to do NaNoWriMo this year. NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) is a themed month to try and write a novel. Now, it's not about being neat, it's about hitting the word count target. Now, I misremembered the number and thought it was 30,000. It's not. It's 50,000. [insert nervous laughter here]

Now, I have no plans to writing or publishing a novel (I don't think I have the thick skin to become a published author) but in my youth, I used to write stories all the time for the sheer joy of it. So, I thought now would be a good time to see if I can get back into writing. I don't plan to hit the target of 50,000. I would like to, if I can, try and hit 15,000 by the end of the month. I want to try and get back into the pattern of writing a little every day, if not on computer, then by hand. 

To help, I've decide to create a pinterest board to help inspire and hint at what I'm writing...

So, excuse me if this month's blogging goes a little by the wayside. But I might have bitten off more than I can chew. Plus, with Christmas and New Year next month (so I'll be taking two to three weeks off to celebrate), the rest of 2019 might be a bit... er... weird. Bear with. Everything will be under control and normal blogging service will resume next month or in 2020! 

Thursday 31 October 2019

Book Review - Angel Mage


What’s this? I don’t start with my usual bulletpoints of information and affiliates. Ok, stay with me. I had plans to buy this. I honestly did! I preordered it and EVERYTHING! So it came as a huge surprise to me when I got an email from Gollancz, asking if anyone wanted to be involved in a blog tour. I jumped at it as I am a huge fan of Garth Nix’s Old Kingdom series and Keys to the Kingdom series. What came as a surprise was when the publisher said “We’re sending you a book for review for the tour”. Now, I don’t normally do reviews for tours as you all know and I had preordered my copy of the book already. But I went “Sod it!” and decided to be involved. Unless something unspeakably awful happened in the book, I was going to be involved in this tour. 

And with that out of the way, let’s talk Angel Mage, shall we? 

  • Title And Author: Angel Mage by Garth Nix
  • Publisher: Gollancz
  • Physical, eBook or Audiobook: Physical
  • Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Gifted by publisher in exchange for an honest review/reaction
  • Length: 560 Pages

Over a century ago, the country of Ystara fell to the Ash Blood plague. If anyone came into contact with the magic of an angel, regardless of the angel’s level, their blood will turn into ash or the person will transform into a terrifying beastling. 

It’s been over a century since Liliath crept into the empty sarcophagus of Saint Marguerite and slept, waiting. But now she is awake, and she has a plan. She still is nineteen, she still looks beautiful and she still is as singleminded as she was before her sleep. She is determined to find the missing archangel of Ystara, Pelleniel. 

But for her plans to succeed, her quest centres round four young Sarancians, each so different and yet, share something important. But what connects the doctor-in-training Simeon, the fortune hunter Herni, the musketeer Agnez, and the scholar and icon maker Dorotea? 

When the four meet by sheer chance, they feel the kinship between them instantly, though they have no idea why. Only Liliath knows why they are so important and she has plans to manipulate the Queen, her musketeers and everyone around her to achieve her ends… 

So… where do I begin?

Tuesday 29 October 2019

Audiobook Review - Murder on the Ballarat Train

  • Title And Author: Murder on the Ballarat Train by Kerry Green
  • Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press/C&R Crime
  • Physical, eBook or Audiobook: Audiobook
  • Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Borrowed from local library via BorrowBox
  • Length: 162 Pages or 4 Hours 48 Minutes

I tried to audiobook the first book in the Phryne Fisher Mystery (or the Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries, if you are a fan of the TV show via Alibi or Netflix), Cocaine Blues, a few months back but due to my hay fever headache and me not warming to the first few chapters (I don’t think I got halfway through chapter 3), I DNFed it. So, why did I decide to try the third book in the series? I wanted something light and quick after audiobooking Eragon, which I struggled with. 

All Phryne Fisher wants is a week of fabulousness in 1920s Ballarat, and going by train should be fun. Expect she woke up with the first class carriage filled with chloroform. Soon, she finds herself in the middle of several investigations: the murder of an elderly woman whose body was dragged up out of the window, a girl with no memory and rumours of white slavery with young girls rumoured to be sold into prostitution. But Phyrne will get to the truth before a possible second murder happens, and if she can have a discreet dalliance with a young man, so be it… 

Sunday 27 October 2019

I'm Crazy For You

The Pewter Wolf's going all green with this stop on the Crazy for You tour! yes, T.S. Hunter and Red Dog are back and they want to let you know about the fourth book in the Soho Noir series, Crazy for You

Now, the plan was for me to read the first and second instalments - Tainted Love and Who's That Girl - before this stop actually happened. I read the third - Careless Whisper - a few months back. August, I believe. And I had such a fun weekend reading it (link to that reaction post is here). But real life and near reading slumps threw me through the ringer this month so bear with me as I try and tempted you with this. 

London's Soho in 1987 is in the grip of another hot summer, and while temping at his local pub, The Red Lion, Joe somehow finds himself agreeing to find the missing girlfriend of Tony "The Lizard" Lagorio. It's Tony's daughter, Antonia, who comes to Joe, fearing that daddy's girlfriend has been kidnapped by a rival gangster. 

But it looks like the girlfriend's very rich father is already asking Joe and business partner, Russell, to find his daughter via his client (and Russell's maybe boyfriend), Freddie Gillespie. It looks like everyone wants to keep this out of the public eye. 

But as Joe and Russell try and the find the missing girlfriend and stop a gang turf war from happening, a face from Freddie's past has appeared and could easily make Freddie lose his job and his relationship with Russell... 

Everyone needs to watch their step. It's a very thin line between love and war... 

I am thrilled that Red Dog asked if I could show an extract of Crazy for You. As you can guess, I am trying to go into this series blind and I heard rumours that there might be a physical bind-up of the whole series out in time for Christmas as I am thinking of treating self to this beast! 

Now, before I hand you over to the extract, I want to thank Dylan at Red Dog for asking if I wanted to be involved (hell yeah!). If you want to know more about TS, you can pop over to his Twitter - @TSHunter5 - or bark at Red Dog Press at @reddogtweets. If you want to know more about Crazy for You or the rest of the Soho Noir novellas, pop over to Red Dog's website

Now, over to TS!

Friday 25 October 2019

Audiobook Review - Eragon

  • Title And Author: Eragon by Christopher Paolini
  • Publisher: Random House (Corgi)
  • Physical, eBook or Audiobook: Audiobook
  • Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Borrowed from local library via BorrowBox
  • Length: 528 Pages or 16 Hours 22 Minutes

At the beginning of the year, I said I was going to try and read the whole Inheritance Cycle and His Fair Assassin series. I failed. I fully accept that I sucked that sticking to my reading plans (hence why I NEVER do “This is my TBR for the month” list). But I did want to try and read this series all the way through. I have read Eragon years ago and I did enjoy myself hugely with it. So, when I was on my library audiobook app and I saw this, I requested it. 

When Eragon finds a polished blue stone, he thinks it’ll be worth something. Maybe he could sell it for meat. But he can’t and, almost overnight, his simple farm boy life is shattered as the stone isn’t a stone but a dragon’s egg. Soon, the egg hatches and, as Eragon and the dragon (who he needs Saphira) bond, both are thrown into a dark world beyond the farm…

Tuesday 22 October 2019

eBook Review - Wolf Brother

  • Title And Author: Wolf Brother by Michelle Paver
  • Publisher: Orion Children’s Books
  • Physical, eBook or Audiobook: eBook
  • Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Bought
  • Length: 256 Pages

I’ve been quite excited over the recent news that Michelle Paver is writing new instalments in her Chronicles of Ancient Darkness series. I’m not sure why but I had the funny feeling I had read the first book in the series, Wolf Brother. So, when I saw that the collection of the six books published so far was on Kindle for less than £4, I jumped at it and decided to reread Wolf Brother and, if I enjoy it, try and read each instalment every month before the newest, Viper’s Daughter, is published early next April. (FYI, I hadn't read Wolf Brother before so no idea why I thought I had!)

Thousand of years ago in the Stone Ages, in the Forest, 12 year old Torak has just seen his father being murdered. Murdered by a bear, which isn’t a bear at all, but a demon possessing the bear’s body. With his dying breath, Torak’s father makes Torak swear a vow: lead the bear to the mountain of the World Spirit and beg for its help. 

But Torak has no idea where the Mountain is or what he will have to do to get the World Spirit’s help. All he knows is that his Guide will help him. But can a small wolf cub, who’s whole pack died in a flash flood, really be Torak’s guide?

Friday 18 October 2019

Audiobook Review - First Test

  • Title And Author: First Test by Tamora Pierce
  • Publisher: HarperVoyager
  • Physical, eBook or Audiobook: Audiobook
  • Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Borrowed from local library via BorrowBox
  • Length: 212 Pages or 5 Hours 21 Minutes

You would think I would focus on the one Tamora Pierce series that I started to read a few months back - Wild Magic, the first in the Immortals series (I have the second and the third on my kindle, as well as Tempests and Slaughter) - but when I was randomly searching my BorrowBox app for a short audiobook (I wasn’t ready to dive into the two long audiobooks I bought several months back…), I spied First Test and went “Ooooh!” then requested. Only to discover afterwards that BorrowBox only had this and Wild Magic as audiobooks so if I liked what I heard, I would have to find a way to continue the series! 

Keladry of Mindelan is the first girl who dares to take advantage of the new law of Tortall, allowing females to train for Knighthood. After growing up on the Yamani Islands, she knows women can be fearless warriors and she wants to be one. But Lord Wyldon, the training master, is dead against the idea of girls becoming knights and forces the king to say that Kel must do a year’s trial - something no boy has ever done. Kel is determined to prove herself, just to be seen as equal…

Wednesday 16 October 2019


Am back from my little holiday with a blog tour! I know! Blogging never sleeps (though I am writing this while feeling quite jet lag so once I've written and amended this, I shall!) and this title might tickle your fancy, hence why I wanted to be involved in the tour!

Pyscho-Logical is an Audible Original that sees Dr Dean Burnett, neuroscientist and best-selling author, look at mental health and ask the question "why?". Why are some conditions such as depression and anxiety so common? Why do so many mental health problems have physical symptoms? Why, when mental health is so common, do people need to be made aware of it? And why is there still so much stigma and confusion when it comes to mental health? 

I am thrilled that Dean is writing a small guest post for the blog tour and I am able to host it! Mental health is important and as someone who thinks he doesn't always have the right balance when it comes to my mental and emotional health (as you can probably guess, I have a tendency to panic), I think we all need to learn to be better on ourselves and look after ourselves and be more aware of the world around us. 

So, before I hand you over to Dean, I just want to thank Dean for finding time to write this post and to Anna at Midas who thought this would be right up my street. If you want to know more about Dean, you can pop over to his website - - or say hi to him on Twitter at @garwboy. If you want to know more about Pyscho-Logical, go to and have a listen to the samplers. That should explain this better than I did up above. 

Now, over to you, Dean!