Wednesday 30 January 2019

Audibook Review - Becoming

  • Title And Author: Becoming by Michelle Obama
  • Publisher: Penguin
  • Physical, eBook or Audiobook: Audiobook
  • Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Bought
  • Length: 463 Pages or 19 Hours

I only finished this on the second of January but started this at beginning of December so TECHNICALLY, this is a 2018 read. But as I finished this is 2019, am classing this as my first 2019 listen! And what a why to start my reading year off! 

Becoming is Michelle Obama memoir about her becoming the woman she is today. Becoming herself while growing up on the South Side of Chicago, becoming a lawyer, becoming a wife, becoming a mother, becoming the First Lady of the United States - the first African American to do so, becoming an advocate to young girls and women everywhere. 

Sunday 27 January 2019

Stripes #Equali-tea

Yesterday was a bit of a manic day. First Saturday off in a while and was going to London for a blogger event. My first ever Stripes Blogger Event (this is their third or fourth, I believe) so I was excited and a little unsure of myself. Yes, I know, I’m in my thirties, I have been for over 8 years this October just gone and still I am worried about going to blogger events because a tiny voice in my head is still telling me “They’re going to find out your not meant to be here…” for the first few minutes. 

Anyway, after turning up and bumping into cool bloggers of Beth, Jen, Layla, Stacey, Michelle, Steph, Janay and a ton of others (who are far too cool for me to list (You know who you are. And you know my memory sucks), the event began. 

As this was Stripes #Equalitea, the five books they showed us has a cool connection with diversity. 

The first is one you might have seen on the Pewter Wolf as the author did a tiny guest post which is Whiteout by Gabriel Dylan. Gabriel explained how this story came into being (aka how he always wanted to write and then, one school ski trip in his early teacher days, he and his class got snowed in and he wondered “What if something is out there in the snow drift and it doesn’t want us to leave…?”). And that question is a the bases of Whiteout. Now, Whiteout is part of Stripes’s Red Eye range so it’s horror (Point Horror for the modern age - anyone remember Point Horror?) and, while I am not a fan of horror, I really want to read this. Whiteout follows Charlie and his classmates who go on a school skiing trip. This is perfect as Charlie is having an unhappy home life of late. But when a snow storm cuts off the resort from the rest of the world and strange things begin to unfollow at an alarmingly rate, Charlie and his classmates realise that something is out there in the storm, watching… waiting… 

And now, the main reason for the event: PROUD. This is getting a lot of buzz and noise so, hopefully, you guys are aware of this collection. If not, let me explain super quick. This collection is a mix of poems, shot stories and art that all tackle the theme of Pride within the LGBTQIA community. With authors and illustrators ranging from Simon James Green, David Levithan, Tanya Byrne, Moïr Fowley-Doyle, Alice Oseman, Priyanka Meenakshi, Fatti Burke and many more, this is going to be a hugely important book. The collection, also, has four stories from 4 previously unpublished authors - Kay Staples, Cynthia So, Karen Lawler and Michael Lee Richardson. Three of these were at the event (Michael couldn’t come due to him living in Scotland) and the three chatted about why they decided to write their stories, what Pride meant to them and read a teaser of their stories: a modern-day Pride and Prejudice retelling, teens on the run (and hiding in their local Travelodge) and a Chinese-inspired fairytale about phoenixes. You guys are going to love these!

Friday 25 January 2019

Courting Darkness Cover Reveal!


... can you tell am a little excited to reveal this?

Anyway, Kate and I revealed this cover on our Twitters about an hour or so ago (Kate is at @Katelovescolour and I'm at @PewterWolf), but we both said we wanted to blog about this cover.

And if you guys haven't guess, I did mention this last week on my His Fair Assassin Mood Board Week. Yes, it's Courting Darkness. And I am quite excited to be involved in the tour as I plan to read the series this year as part of my Year of Blood and Magic and, if you have read this series, there is a lot of blood and murder and assassin nuns! HISTORICAL ASSASSIN NUNS!!!

So I am thrilled and excited to reveal the cover for Courting Darkness and revealing a tad of information about the book!

You ready...?

OMG (Oh My Gods!)

I love Greek myths. I don't that comes as a huge shock to you guys, so when I first heard of Oh My Gods,  I knew I had to read it in 2019! Greek gods hiding in modern London? SIGN ME UP IMMEDIATELY!!! Plus, LOOK AT THAT COVER!!!

I am thrilled to be reading in soon (I have one secret manuscript/story to read then am all over this!!!) but I am thrilled to be involved in this blog tour and thrilled to welcome Alexandra Sheppard onto the Pewter Wolf, chatting about why having an immortal family is a whole heap of trouble. What do you expect when Zeus is your father and your half siblings are gods...?

Before I throw you over to Alexandra, I just want to thank her for finding time to write this some piece for The Pewter Wolf. And thank you to Harriet at Scholastic for asking if I wanted to be involved in this tour!

OH! If you want to say hi to Alexandra, why not pop over to her website at or pop over onto twitter and tweet her at @alexsheppard!

Now, over to Alexandra!!!

Tuesday 22 January 2019

Audible Never-Ending Wish List

I like listening to audiobooks. At the time I'm writing this, I am slowly working my way through Becoming by Michelle Obama (and am going slowly as am savouring it). But am going through a bit of funk with Audible. Again, at the time of writing this, I have three Audible credits I haven't used (four by the time you're reading this). You would think I would have gone to the audiobooks I have on my wish list and bought a few of them with my credits. But I haven't. For one excuse or another, I haven't.

But I want to chat to you about some of the audiobooks that are on my wishlist. Not all, but some. Five, maybe 6 at a push. Plus, reference one or two audiobooks that I loved (Circe by Madeline Miller is a good one. I adore that audiobook so much, I'm planning to buy the physical copy) and chat about why they are on my wishlist or are going to be removed from it sooner rather than later...

So, let's get this audiobook party started.

Friday 18 January 2019

His Fair Assassin Mood Board Week - Courting Darkness

So... here we are. The last day of my His Fair Assassin mood board week. Though, technically, this isn't a His Fair Assassin book. This, while set in the same world and follows one of the characters we have earlier met, this is the first book in a new duology, Courting Darkness.

No cover, I hear you ask? Well, keep your eyes peeled on my Twitter (@PewterWolf) and on the lovely twitter of Kate at @katelovescolour as we might be showing off the cover of Courting Darkness on Friday 25th, maybe... (keep eyes peeled on Andersen Press's twitter as well. They are at @AndersenPress)

And seeing as I - and a good chuck on readers I love and trust - haven't read this yet, I am going in blind with this mood board and, because of this, this was the hardest mood board to create. I wanted something striking yet...

But before I explain myself more, let's show you the synopsis and all the stupid affiliate links (humour me as am doing this as experiment)...

Thursday 17 January 2019

His Fair Assassin Mood Board Week - Mortal Heart

Day Three of our His Fair Assassin Mood Board Week and it's Mortal Heart. Out of the original His Fair Assassin trilogy, this was probably one of the hardest to create as, while I had a good idea of Grave Mercy and Dark Triumph, I don't know much about Mortal Heart, so I had to trust the book's synopsis far more than I would have liked.

But I am quite happy with what I created...

Tuesday 15 January 2019

His Fair Assassin Mood Board Week - Dark Triumph

Day Two on my His Fair Assassin Mood Board Week and we're on what I have discover seems to be a fan fave within the series, Dark Truimph. No pressure to get this right, but seeing that I haven't read the book yet or met Sybella and this mysterious Beast. But am intrigued to see if what info I have gathered and used to create my mood board and compare to what I read...

But now, before I hand you my mood board, here is the synopsis of Dark Triumph and explain why I picked some of my choices...

Monday 14 January 2019

His Fair Assassin Mood Board Week - Grave Mercy

As I told you guys know, I am planning to read His Fair Assassin trilogy by Robin LaFevers and the first book in its companion spinoff, Courting Darkness due to the cover reissuing (Aren't they pretty?). Well, when I was chatting to Layla at Andersen about this, she and I started chatting about ways to give this series some more attention and I said "I love the idea of a mood board. Plus, only read the first years ago so it would be fun to do them based on the synopsis. Plus, fits in with my Year of Blood and Magic as... well... murder and blood!" And Layla said "That sounds weird. I like it! Go for it!"

So, here I am. And because I don't want to do a review this month, this whole week will be mood board on assassin nuns (barring Wednesday. Even I need a break!)

Now, the plan is that am going to show you the book's synopsis, stupid affiliate links where you can buy them and then show you the mood board and chat about where my brain where with it...

So, let's get this blood-party start!

Friday 11 January 2019

The Fork, The Witch and the Worm

Like I told you guys earlier this week, I'm planning on reading two series this years. The first is His Fair Assassin series by Robin LaFevers. The second is the Inheritance Cycle by Christopher Paolini. It's one of those series I read YEARS ago (ten? Twelve?) when the first book, Eragon, came out and loved, but got scared of the sequels due to length.

Anyway, when I decided to try and return to this world, the collection of short stories set after the fourth and final book, Inheritance, was announced so I need I was going to add to my reading without even thinking about. So, when the lovely Sian at ED PR asked if I would be involved in this blog tour to celebrate The Fork, The Witch and the Worm, I jumped at the chance.

Acting as both an entry point for new readers and loving return to fans, this collection takes place a year after the events of Inheritance, Eragon is struggling with find a new home for the dragons and riders while coping with a never-ending sea of tasks. But a vision, a surprise visitors and an exciting legend gives Eragon the distraction and new perspective Eragon needs...

I am currently reading this collection of three stories at time of writing this post and I am having a blast and can't wait to return to this world in the coming months. So, to share my excitement, I have a small extract to share with you!

Now, before I hand you to the extract, I want to thank Sian at ED PR for asking me to be involved in this tour. Super kind of you and a great way to kickstart my Year of Blood and Magic reading! And, if you want to know more about Christopher Paolini and the world of Alagaësia, you can check out or say hi to him on Twitter at @paolini (Also say hi to his sister, Angela, on Twitter at @Angela_Paolini as she is not only the inspiration behind beloved character in series, Angela the herbalist [who my extract is about! SO EXTRA LOVE PLEASE AND THANK YOU!] by also wrote  within the collection. But where you ask? I'm not going to kiss and tell. A dragon would kill for less...)


Wednesday 9 January 2019

Gabriel Dylan WHITEOUTs the Pewter Wolf

SURPRISE!!! It's my stop on the mysterious Whiteout blog tour and the Pewter Wolf is thrilled to welcome Gabriel Dylan to the blog. 

For those of you not in the know, Gabriel Dylan is the author of the new RedEye title, Whiteout. Charlie is hoping this school ski trip will distract him from his home life. But when at the ski resort he and his fellow classmates get stuck due to a freak snow storm and get cut off from the rest of the world, they get the feeling that there's something outside. Something old, and something evil... 

Only the ski instructor, Hanna, has any idea what might be out there. But should Charlie and his classmates trust her... 

To celebrate the release of this chill-fest, Gabriel has written a small list fo his top 5 teen ensembles in movies. And I think some of these choices might surprise you... Well, they surprised me, and I got to read this before this post went live! 

Now, before I hand you over to Gabriel, I just want to thank him for finding time to write this post. I know he's a busy man (you'll see why in the second paragraph he wrote) and I want to thank Charlie from Stripes for asking if I want to be involved! 

Also, if you want to check Gabriel out online (which you should), you can go to his website at or check out his Twitter at @GabrielDylanYA

Strap in and let's ski/snowboard down this slope and see Gabriel's chart before the storm kicks in!

Tuesday 8 January 2019

Favourite Black Character In Fiction

I am thrilled to be involved in this as, recently, it was report that one percent of children's book have BAME (Black, Asian or Minority Ethnic) main characters in British children's book. ONLY ONE PERCENT! So, when I heard of Black Enough, I jumped at the chance to be involved!

Black Enough is a collection of stories, written by some of most acclaimed black American authors writing for teens, talking about what it means to be young and black in America.

Edited by Ibi Zoboi and with an introduction from the kickass June Sarpong, this collection includes authors such as Dhonielle Clayton, Nic Stone, Jason Reynolds and others. And now more than even, we need these types of stories to be told.

And as a gay white man, I think I need to educate myself better with the world around me. Hence why I wanted to be involved in this tour.

Plus, hearing what these authors said was too delicious not to past up!

Now, I have put the video of Favourite Black Character via Blogger and YouTube for your viewing pleasure. I also popped up the trailer for the book & one other video which I hope fits. And before I hand you over to these videos, I want to thank HarperCollins for asking me to be involved and sorry for me screaming via email going "YES!!!" and being quite impatient over it. Thank you/sorry.

Now, over to the cool authors!

Monday 7 January 2019

Two Series I'm Going To Try And Read in 2019

You know in my "The Year of Blood and Magic Begins..." post last week, I said that I had no rules for this. Well, it's kinda true and it isn't. You see, I had an idea of trying to read one series throughout the course of 2019. And that was the plan I was sticking to... but then another series caught my attention and I decided to add that series to my year-long reading.

So, I have two series I am going to try and read throughout 2019, each tackling one side of my "Blood and Magic" and I wanted to let you know so, if you fancy joining along with me, you are more than welcome...

So, what are the two series in question? Well, they are the Inheritance Cycle by Christopher Paolini and His Fair Assassin by Robin LaFevers.

And the reasons for these two series (as well as a few other books am keeping on the down low for now...): Here There Be Dragons and Badass Nun Assassins!

Ok, there is more to them than that. Of course there is. I have, in fact, read the first book in each series - Eragon and Grave Mercy - many years ago. One was before the blog and I remember wanting to continue the series, but the size of them scared the ho-ha out of me! The other was when I did have the blog and, while I did like it, I wasn't that big a reader of the genre it was set in and found it quite slow. But I have changed as a reader and I love a good, slow burn...

Plus, let me say this again: DRAGONS AND KILLER NUNS! How can I possibly sell these two series to you more?!

Ok, maybe I need to sell these two series more... Ok, let's me copy the synopsis of Eragon and Grave Mercy on here for you to read. (Both of these are from Goodreads. Will put links in for you

When Eragon finds a polished stone in the forest, he thinks it is the lucky discovery of a poor farm boy; perhaps it will buy his family meat for the winter. But when the stone brings a dragon hatchling, Eragon soon realizes he has stumbled upon a legacy nearly as old as the Empire itself. Overnight his simple life is shattered and he is thrust into a perilous new world of destiny, magic and power. With only an ancient sword and the advice of an old storyteller for guidance, Eragon and the fledgling dragon must navigate the dangerous terrain and dark enemies of an Empire ruled by a king whose evil knows no bounds. Can Eragon take up the mantle of the legendary Dragon Riders? The fate of the Empire may rest in his hands. (Goodreads Link to Eragon)


Why be the sheep, when you can be the wolf?

Seventeen-year-old Ismae escapes from the brutality of an arranged marriage into the sanctuary of the convent of St. Mortain, where the sisters still serve the gods of old. Here she learns that the god of Death Himself has blessed her with dangerous gifts—and a violent destiny. If she chooses to stay at the convent, she will be trained as an assassin and serve as a handmaiden to Death. To claim her new life, she must destroy the lives of others.

Ismae’s most important assignment takes her straight into the high court of Brittany—where she finds herself woefully under prepared—not only for the deadly games of intrigue and treason, but for the impossible choices she must make. For how can she deliver Death’s vengeance upon a target who, against her will, has stolen her heart?

So, I have eight novels to read for both series - Eragon, Eldest, Brisingr and Inheritance for the Inheritance Cycle and Grave Mercy, Dark Triumph, Mortal Heart and Courting Darkness for His Fair Assassin and its spinoff. Plus I have a collection of short stories set in the Eragon world - The Fork, The Witch and the Worm. 

Have I bitten off more than I can chew? Probably. But I am going to try. I do hope you come along with me while I read these badass novels! (And if you wanna buy a copy, go to the affiliates on the side or visit your library! This is gonna be fun!)

Friday 4 January 2019

Laure Eve Starts the New Year On A Chiller

I am thrilled to welcome my first Guest Post for the Pewter Wolf in 2019: Laure Eve!

Laure Eve is the author behind the hugely popular The Graces of last year and now, the sequel to this The Curses is going to hit our shelves this month and, because of that, COVER CHANGES ARE IN ORDER!!!

Foe those of you who don't know The Graces, the story follows River, a girl who is, like everyone else in town, obsessed with the Graces, four siblings that attract the eye with their glamour and have the allure that they can weave magic. But is there more to them than they seem? Are they more dangerous than they led people to believe...

And with The Curses, it follows directly from the chilling events of The Graces. Told from Summer Grace point of view, the Graces want everything to go back to normal. But that doesn't look like that's going to happen. Wolf has mysteriously appeared in their lives, just as mysteriously as he disappeared and something is at work to destroy them all.

Definitely looks like these are something that fits perfectly with my Year of Blood and Magic, doesn't it not?!

Moving on from that, I am thrilled that Laure is gonna start the new year on the Pewter Wolf with a bit of a dark, chilly note so wrap up warm before you go on. While you grab your coats and scarves, I want to thank Laure for finding the time to write this and I want to thank Hannah at Faber for allowing me to be involving in this post!

Got your gloves on? No... ok, you grab them while I tell you to check Laure out via her website - or via her Twitter at @LaureEve. Ok, all wrapped up? ... good. Over to Laure to bring the chill...

Wednesday 2 January 2019

The Year of Blood and Magic Begins...

HAPPY 2019 EVERYONE!!! All of you enjoying the new year so far...?

So, I will be back properly some time in the next 7 days (had to move one or two things about for guest posts... don't ask) but I wanted to tell you guys my plan for The Pewter Wolf this year. Actually, it's not really a plan but a reading challenge, and I am so weirdly excited over it that I started writing this plan on scraps of paper back in August/September of last year!

So, what is my reading challenge this year, I hear no one ask (if you did ask, you are special and have a tiny spot in my heart). Well, 2019 is going to be my Year of Blood and Magic!

Basically, Year of Blood and Magic is going to be the year I focus mainly on reading two genres that I love and want to spend more time reading: fantasy and crime/thrillers. (or, as I chatted to a book blogger pal of mine a few months back, dragons and murder!)

Yes, I know I read a lot of fantasy and I read books that have a crime/thriller element in them but I want to widen my horizons with these genres. Age up, read in different genres, read stories in different styles. Basically, I want to widen my reading horizons and I feel that these genres, though I love them hugely, I read very little within them. Hence why I wanted to focus on them more this year.

Yes, I am still going to read within other genres (if I read solely within these two genres, I think I would go crazy!), so don't worry too much about that!

Now, I was going to say I have rules or conditions to this but I decided to scrap them - kinda. What's the point? I want to read books and audiobooks because they grab me and I want to read/listen to fun. I do think, maybe, I will make myself read a few more Agatha Christie/Sookie Stackhouse/Terry Pratchett but, barring that, nope. No rules.

The reason for my kinda is because I have two series I've decided I want to try and read this year. I am going to talk about them both in a later post but they both fit very nicely in my Blood and Magic...

And another reason for the "No Rules" thing is because I'm in two minds about the future of The Pewter Wolf - not sure if I want to make 2019/2020 my last years of blogging so I don't want that pressure. I want to bring the fun back. If I go silent on here for several weeks, so be it.

Now, I do hope you come along for the ride. Now, I can't guarantee that am going to succeed but am going to try, and hopefully, these will be a nice clue to the direction I want to go...