Thursday 28 March 2013

The Proposition Review

With her thirtieth birthday looming, Emma Harrison finds her biological clock clanging and the elusive knight in shining armor yet to appear. She’s running out of options, especially after her gay best friend backs out from being her sperm donor. Of course, there’s always a sperm bank, but Emma fears a donor mix-up might impregnate her with the spawn of Satan.

Resident company womanizer, Aidan Fitzgerald, is used to always getting what he wants, especially in the bedroom. When Emma spurns his advances at the company Christmas party, he's determined to have her no matter what it takes. After Aidan learns of Emma's predicament, he is quick to offer a proposition that will benefit them both. He will father Emma's child, but she must conceive it with him naturally. Not one for hook-ups or casual sex, Emma is reluctant to take him up on his offer, but his charm, coupled with her intense desire for motherhood, wins out.

Soon their baby-making sessions become more than just physical. Aidan can't seem to walk away from her while Emma begins to wonder if Aidan could be the one. But can Aidan leave his past behind to become the man Emma needs him to be?

The Proposition by Katie Ashley was a recommendation by author Kelli Maine who is determined to break my bank account.  Props to her though because DAMN, Katie Ashley knows how to write some pretty delicious romance that you can’t help but devour in one sitting.  I literally could not put this book down.

The story centres on Emma who has just turned thirty and life hasn’t quite turned out the way she planned (boy, can I relate to THAT one).  She has no man, no children and she’s desperate to have a baby.  Damn that biological clock ticking away!  Her gay best friend isn’t keen to help and then Emma has a chance encounter with Aiden Fitzgerald, the company player with a reputation to boot. After hearing about her plight, he makes her an offer she can’t refuse – he will give her a baby if she conceives it naturally with him and wouldn’t you know it, not only is he kind, considerate and charming but he’s also good in bed and the sex is amazing.  Of course, they have to do it more than once (what a shame) and there’s a legal contract in place absolving him of all responsibility so what’s in it for him? He’s wanted Emma since she spurned his advances at the company Christmas party so he gets to have sex with a beautiful woman he’s attracted to and Emma gets a baby. It’s a WIN/WIN situation but it turns out that neither of them can let each other go. 

The Proposition is a PERFECT read.  Not only is it highly entertaining, unputdownable, steamy, and heart warming but the characters are three dimensional and mark my words, you WILL fall in love with Aiden by the end of the novel.  I know I did.  And that is DESPITE the ending which you kinda need to be prepared for.  Without spoiling it, let’s just say that book two is going to be pretty interesting and Emma is going to make Aiden WORK for her affection.  I can’t wait! 

The Proposition is one of the best contemporary romance books I’ve read in a really long time and it comes highly recommended by me.  Katie Ashley is definitely an author to watch and I won’t hesitate to read more of her books. 

The Proposition was published on 30th October, 2012.  To find out more about Katie Ashley and her books, please click here to visit her website.

Wednesday 27 March 2013

Waiting on Wednesday

"Waiting On Wednesday" is a weekly event, originally started by Jill at Breaking the Spine , that highlights upcoming book releases everyone is waiting on...hence the title. This week's pick is Deception by C.J. Redwine. Here's the synopsis:

Baalboden has been ravaged. The brutal Commander's whereabouts are unknown. And Rachel, grief stricken over her father's death, needs Logan more than ever. With their ragged group of survivors struggling to forge a future, it's up to Logan to become the leader they need—with Rachel by his side. Under constant threat from rival Carrington's army, who is after the device that controls the Cursed One, the group decides to abandon the ruins of their home and take their chances in the Wasteland.

But soon their problems intensify tenfold: someone—possibly inside their ranks—is sabotaging the survivors, picking them off one by one. The chaos and uncertainty of each day puts unbearable strain on Rachel and Logan, and it isn't long before they feel their love splintering. Even worse, as it becomes clear that the Commander will stop at nothing to destroy them, the band of survivors begins to question whether the price of freedom may be too great—and whether, hunted by their enemies and the murderous traitor in their midst, they can make it out of the Wasteland alive.

In this daring sequel to Defiance, with the world they once loved forever destroyed, Rachel and Logan must decide between a life on the run and standing their ground to fight.

I really enjoyed Defiance and it's originality in terms of story and so OF COURSE I have to get the sequel!!  As always, the cover is lovely and matches the series so far (PLEASE DON'T CHANGE THEM MID SERIES, I BEG YOU!).  I'm pre ordering this as we speak. 

Deception is published on 27th August, 2013 in the US and 5th September, 2013 in the UK.   

Tuesday 26 March 2013

Letterbox Love (#46)

As always, Letterbox Love is a weekly feature that I'm hosting on the blog and basically, the idea came out of a discussion with other UK book bloggers about the need to do a weekly meme with more of a British feel to it. Therefore, Letterbox Love was born and the logo was lovingly designed by Dark Readers. Letterbox Love is a way for us to share the books that come through our letterbox, galleys and e books (through our electronic letterbox) and any other bookish goodies that we want to tell you about. Letterbox Love is intended to showcase upcoming books and build up some excitement for them as well as let you know what is available out there. It is not about competing with other bloggers or boasting of any kind (c'mon, we're British and we don't do drama!)

Please accept my sincere apologies for the lateness of this post but I've been working night shifts all weekend and they are not conducive to getting ANYTHING else done apart from sleeping and working.

Review Books

Ink By Amanda Sun
I think this book sounds really interesting and unique, a book about Japanese myth and legend with a beautiful cover to boot.

 The Eternity Cure by Julie Kagawa
It's the sequel to The Immortal Rules, it's Julie Kagawa, do I really need to say more? I'm very excited to continue reading this epic story. 

Going Vintage by Lindsey Leavitt
I'm intrigued by the idea of trying to live without technology (although I don't think I could do it) and I'm pleased to see this being published in the UK. 
Follow Me Down by Tanya Byrne
This is the new novel from Tanya Byrne, author of Heart Shaped Bruise which I STILL have to read.  I keep hearing good things about her writing and she's lovely online so I must get round to reading her books!

Thank You Publishers!!!

Books Bought

Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare
This is the final book in the Infernal Devices series and I can't believe I haven't started these books yet.  I think I'd probably better hurry up as I'm terrified of coming across spoilers online. I am sure to love this series as I love The Mortal Instruments (did I tell you how ridiculously excited I am for the movie?!) and Cassandra can do no wrong in my eyes. 

Requiem by Lauren Oliver
This is of course, the final part of the Delirium series and I'm almost scared to read it, if I'm honest which is probably why I haven't started it yet.  I've heard mixed reviews about the ending and I hate when my favourite series ends too but I have to know what happens!!

Poison by Bridget Zinn
This is a debut novel by a young writer who sadly did not live long enough to see her dreams come true - a thought that genuinely saddens me.  I think the book sounds really fun, full of magic, quests, a dash of humour and a piglet? Looking forward to reading this!

Elixir by Jennifer L. Armentrout
This is the paperback copy which I wanted to get for my collection.  I love Jennifer's books, especially this series and in fact, as crazy as it might sound, I think Elixir is one of my favourite books in this particular series, which might sound a little strange considering how short it is.


Elenor & Park by Rainbow Rowell (Bought)
So, I keep hearing amazing things of this little book and after reading the synopsis, I really want to read it.  I like the idea of a bigger girl/more normal girl than the skinny, model protagonists with perfect bodies we're used to.

Freak of Nature by Julia Crane (Bought)
A girl who is half robot and half human?  A brilliant scientist who feels guilty about what the girl has become and finds himself falling for her?  Yeah, I'm intrigued. 

Scandalous 2 by H.M. Ward (Bought)
This is obviously the sequel to Scandalous which I haven't read yet but it was on offer for a limited time so I bought it as no doubt, I'm going to want to read it.

The Practice Proposal by Tracy March (Bought)
I'm certain I've read books using this trope before but I'm sure it will be entertaining nonetheless.

The Baby Bargain by Jennifer Apodaca (Bought)
See above.  This sounds a little bit like Forever My Girl by Heidi McLaughlin but I love romances with military men and I've heard good things about the book.

Marked by Elizabeth Naughton (Bought)
I like the sound of this book from the synopsis although I'm pretty sure I can predict what's going to happen.  This will be one of my rainy day romance reads.

My Everything by Heidi McLaughlin (Bought)
I really enjoyed Forever My Girl and this is a short novella from the series and a must read for fans.

Fateful by Cheri Schmidt (Free)
A New Adult book sprinkled with a bit of Jane Austen, some romance and features a vampire love interest.  Definitely intrigued. 

The Symbolon by Delia Colvin (Free)
This is the second book in this series that I haven't started yet but I have the first book.  It's a love story and that's all I know really.
How to Date an Alien by Magan Vernon (Free)
I'm certain I've read a version of this before, possibly as a beta reader but it was free and probably about time I reviewed it. 

Brash by Nicola Marsh (Free)
A sexy, romantic read and a tropical island? I'm there.

Icons by Margaret Stohl (Netgalley - For Review)
This is the new book from Margaret Stohl (one half of the writing duo who wrote Beautiful Creatures).  It sounds fabulous and I'm looking forward to reading this. 

The Sweetest Dark by Shana Abe (Netgalley - For Review)
This is a YA book, set in Post Victorian England and features a boarding school on the Southern coast.  There's mystery and possibly a bit of romance and I thought it sounded interesting because whilst the boarding school idea is OLD, I have not seen it used outside of a modern day setting. 

The Deepest Night by Shana Abe (Netgalley - For Review)
This is the sequel to the above. 
Dark Triumph by Robin LaFevers (For Review)
I absolutely loved Grave Mercy and so I'm looking forward to reading the sequel although I believe it's mostly about another character this time.

Apologies again for the lateness but better late than never!  I've been reading romances this week and have finished The Collector by Victoria Scott, The party by Katie Ashley, Wait for You by Jennifer L. Armentrout and Music of the Heart by Katie Ashley, all of which come highly recommended by me.  I also re-read The Selection by Kiera Cass as I CANNOT WAIT for The Elite to come out next month.  I LOVE this series and I'm VERY excited to read the next book.  I'd do just about anything to get my hands on it now!!!  Whilst I'm waiting though, I have no clue what to start next!! I'm surrounded by way too many awesome books and this thought paralyzes me as a reader!  I hope you all had a great week for books and as always, please share your links below.

Monday 25 March 2013

A Shimmer of Angels Review

Sixteen-year-old Rayna sees angels, and has the medication and weekly therapy sessions to prove it. Now, in remission, Rayna starts fresh at a new school, lands a new job, and desperately tries for normalcy. She ignores signs that she may be slipping into the world she has tried so hard to climb out of. But these days, it’s more than just hallucinations that keep Rayna up at night. Students are dying, and she may be the only one who can stop it. Can she keep her job, her sanity, and her friends from dying at the hands of angels she can't admit to seeing?
A Shimmer of Angels is the first release from Month 9 Books and a book I’ve been meaning to read for a while now.  I love angel books, I really do but if you’re going to write one, you HAVE to make it fresh/different and so I found myself asking what’s different about this story?  The answer is the heavy mental health aspect and the fact that this book is perhaps a bit darker than other angel books I’ve read (on a par with Leah Clifford's A Touch Mortal series perhaps on the darkness scales).  I also enjoyed the fact that the angels didn’t know Rayna could see them.

Speaking of which, let’s talk about two angels in particular that feature heavily in the book - prepare to fall for Cam and Kade.  Cam is the quintessential good guy and Kade is the fallen angel bad boy but thankfully it’s not that black and white.  I liked the fact that the good guy could be tempted and the bad boy isn’t really that bad, he’s just a loner with a snarky attitude who lives by his own rules.   The question is, why can Rayna see the angels? And why are her school friends dying?  Rayna just might be the key to everything and let me tell you that the ending? Is a HUGE surprise.  

A Shimmer of Angels is well written on the whole but the book throws up more questions than it answers and I’m hoping book two will address those.  It was a little slow to start but once the scene was set and it got going, I really enjoyed it and I’m definitely looking forward to the sequel.

A Shimmer of Angels was published on 29th January, 2013.  To find out more about Lisa M. Basso, please click here to visit her website.

Thursday 21 March 2013

Time Between Us Review

Anna and Bennett were never supposed to meet: she lives in 1995 Chicago and he lives in 2012 San Francisco. But Bennett has the unique ability to travel through time and space, which brings him into Anna’s life, and with him a new world of adventure and possibility.

As their relationship deepens, the two face the reality that time may knock Bennett back to where he belongs, even as a devastating crisis throws everything they believe into question. Against a ticking clock, Anna and Bennett are forced to ask themselves how far they can push the bounds of fate, what consequences they can bear in order to stay together, and whether their love can stand the test of time.

Fresh, exciting, and deeply romantic, Time Between Us is a stunning, spellbinding debut from an extraordinary new voice in YA fiction.

If you know anything about me at all, it should be that I am a massive fan of time travel stories and so naturally, I gravitated towards this book. Billed as a YA Time Traveller’s Wife, how could I possibly resist?! 

Time Between Us tells the story of Anna and Bennett, two teenagers whose lives are tangled up together although Anna was actually born sixteen years prior to Bennett.  Bennett is able to travel through time and is currently on a mission to find his sister who went missing during a previous trip they took together to attend a concert.  During one of his trips, he meets and falls for Anna but can a relationship across time last the distance?  How long will it be until Bennett is pulled back to his own time and what happens when he finds his sister and goes home?

Although the beginning of the book wasn’t particularly shocking or dramatic, I was immediately caught up in the story as if I too had traveled to Anna’s world.  I really enjoyed the story and I loved the ‘do over’s’ and the moral/ethical debate over changing events and what the implications of their actions would be. 

My favourite character has to be Anna and I really loved that she had interests and desires outside of Bennett, as the love interest (I guess they share their love of travel though.)   All the way through the book, Anna came across as a strong, independent girl who believes in making the right choices, even if they are sometimes the most difficult to bear.

Time Between Us was beautifully easy to read - the writing was excellent and I enjoyed the nicely flowing sentences.  I don’t quite know how or why but some writers are able to elicit a calm feeling when reading and Tamara is one of those writers, for me.  I thought this book was a very cosy read with a satisfying ending and it could easily be a standalone.  I’m happy to learn however that there will be a sequel and I can’t wait to dive back into Anna and Bennett’s world.  This is the kind of book you loan to your best friend or your sister and hope that she loves it as much as you do so you can talk all about it.  I really loved the book and all I want to do is travel back in time and read it all over again for the first time.

Time Between Us was published on 9th October, 2012 in the US and 25th October, 2012 in the UK.  To find out more about Tamara and her books, please click here to visit her website.

Wednesday 20 March 2013

Waiting on Wednesday

"Waiting On Wednesday" is a weekly event, originally started by Jill at Breaking the Spine , that highlights upcoming book releases everyone is waiting on...hence the title. This week's pick is The Chaos of Stars by Kiersten White. Here's the synopsis:

Isadora’s family is seriously screwed up.

Of course, as the human daughter of Egyptian gods, that pretty much comes with the territory. She’s also stuck with parents who barely notice her, and a house full of relatives who can’t be bothered to remember her name. After all, they are going to be around forever—and she’s a mere mortal.

Isadora’s sick of living a life where she’s only worthy of a passing glance, and when she has the chance to move to San Diego with her brother, she jumps on it. But Isadora’s quickly finding that a “normal” life comes with plenty of its own epic complications—and that there’s no such thing as a clean break when it comes to family. Much as she wants to leave her past behind, she can’t shake the ominous dreams that foretell destruction for her entire family. When it turns out there may be truth in her nightmares, Isadora has to decide whether she can abandon her divine heritage after all.

Let me just start by simply saying that I don't care what this book is about, I just have to have it on my shelves as really this is one of the most beautiful covers I've ever seen.  There seems to be a lot of upcoming books with 'stars' in the titles but it doesn't bother me in the slightest (although I cannot guarantee that I won't mix up and blend some of the titles in my head - hey, I could come up with an entirely new title!)  I love the fact that this book features something not seen often in YA books and that's a story about Egyptian Gods.  I have to admit that I STILL haven't read any of Kiersten's books yet to my shame, although I do have them on the shelves.  I'm definitely going to be reading this one when it comes out.  

The Chaos of Stars is published on 10th September, 2013 with no UK release date at present.

Tuesday 19 March 2013

Marissa Meyer is coming to the UK!


Just wanted to let you know that Marissa Meyer, author of Cinder and Scarlet (The Lunar Chronicles series) will be in the UK on 26th March in Bromley and if you can make it, you should totally go!  Unfortunately, I am unable to attend due to work commitments and so I've got the next best thing - please help me welcome Marissa Meyer to the blog today to talk about world building.  Take it away, Marissa.

World-Building in The Lunar Chronicles

World-building is a long, somewhat slow process, one that I never feel is entirely finished. I don’t know if there are writers who can envision, wholly and completely, a brand-new fictional world on the first go, but I’m certainly not one of them. For me, the world comes in layers. Many, many layers, made up of many, many details.

When I first started planning The Lunar Chronicles, I wanted the series to have a global feel—largely because many of the problems facing the characters, such as a worldwide plague pandemic and an approaching war, are global problems—but I was worried about the series getting bogged down with politics, diplomats, and governmental processes. So I decided to simplify all that early on by conglomerating all of Earth down into only six countries. I looked at a globe, decided what those countries would be and what land each of them would incorporate, and ta-da: an instant map, a brand-new Earth.

But world-building is so much more than drawing up territories and giving each of them a name. Although The Lunar Chronicles will span three different continents throughout the series (each with their own world-building challenges, as I’ve discovered), I’ll focus on The Eastern Commonwealth, where Cinder begins her journey. The Commonwealth comprises most of Asia, the Middle East, the Pacific Islands, and Siberia. Because there are so many rich and unique cultures within those areas, I wanted to touch on as many of them as possible. Yes, Chinese is the central focus point (the capital city is New Beijing, after all), but I also wanted readers to grasp that the Commonwealth is made up of Japanese, Korean, Filipino, Indian, Thai, and oh-so-many other cultures, traditions, and histories. To integrate them all, I might mention a style of clothing, or a location-specific food dish, or cultural symbolism, and hope they all work together.

And then there are issues of world-building that come strictly from one’s imagination. The hatred people feel toward cyborgs and Lunars (and where that hatred came from). The technology that has infiltrated so much of Cinder’s world. How a society might react to the ongoing turmoil created by the plague and how that would influence everything from economics to population.

With every decision we make in the building of our worlds, we’re adding another layer. Another detail. And it’s those details, I think, that truly create the world. Not the maps or the country names or the intricate history we’ve created.  Rather, it’s the hum of magnets beneath a street. The smell of antiseptic in a quarantine lab. The chatter of video advertisements in a crowded city square. Small bats embroidered along a mandarin collar—a symbol to bring good luck.  The details start to come to life on the page. They start to work together to create something rich and interesting and real. And then, suddenly, we realize we’ve created an entire world for our characters.

If we’re lucky, it becomes as real to the reader as it has to us.

Thank you Marissa!! Cinder was published on 5th January, 2012 and Scarlet was published on 7th February, 2013 in the UK.  To find out more about Marissa Meyer and her books, please click here to visit her website.

And....just in case you can't make it to the event, here is the lady herself.

Monday 18 March 2013

Walking Disaster Review

 Can you love someone too much?

Travis Maddox learned two things from his mother before she died: Love hard. Fight harder.

In Walking Disaster, the life of Travis is full of fast women, underground gambling, and violence. But just when he thinks he is invincible, Abby Abernathy brings him to his knees.

Every story has two sides. In Beautiful Disaster, Abby had her say. Now it’s time to see the story through Travis’s eyes.

This has be to be one of the most hotly anticipated releases of 2013, at least for me as I fell in love with Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire when I read it last year (see here for my gushing review).  Walking Disaster is not a sequel but a companion novel of sorts - it’s basically the same story but told from Travis’s point of view.  Ever wondered what he was thinking in a particular scene? What happened when she left him? Or how about that drunken conversation he had with Abby at her birthday party?  Well, NOW YOU CAN FIND OUT WHAT HAPPENED.  I have to say actually that the drunken conversation was one of my favourite Travis and Abby moments in this book. 

What I found really interesting about Walking Disaster was how Travis saw Abby.  In Beautiful Disaster, Abby was confused as Travis never came out and directly told her how he felt until the end of the book but in this book, he lets us know that he thinks it’s totally obvious and she just doesn’t get it.  Love it. 

I loved this book so hard and it was amazing to gain a little insight into the crazy world of Travis “Mad Dog” Maddox.  I particularly enjoyed his conversations with Shepley, and the way he saw Abby of course. We also learn a little bit more about Travis’s brother Trent and I’m thinking that he could be the next brother to get his own book ;)

Without spoiling it, all I’m going to tell you is that there is an epilogue at the end of the book.  Was it necessary? Probably not.  Will there be mixed reviews about it? I’m guessing yes but for me, I don’t mind a little sneaky peek into the future and I thought it was cute.  I will always love Travis and I hope he pops up in Jamie’s future books about his brothers. 

I really do hope with all my heart that there is a special signed hardback edition of this book to match my special signed hardback edition of Beautiful Disaster as it’s kind of lonely on the shelf at the moment.  I’m ecstatic that Jamie is writing more companion novels as I have a soft spot for Travis’s brothers and am definitely keen to know more.  Walking Disaster is worth every penny and if you’re a huge fan (like me) then it’s a must read.  BRING ON THE MOVIE!!!!

Walking Disaster is published on 2nd April, 2013.  To find out more about Jamie McGuire and her books, please click here.

Sunday 17 March 2013

Letterbox Love (#45)

As always, Letterbox Love is a weekly feature that I'm hosting on the blog and basically, the idea came out of a discussion with other UK book bloggers about the need to do a weekly meme with more of a British feel to it. Therefore, Letterbox Love was born and the logo was lovingly designed by Dark Readers. Letterbox Love is a way for us to share the books that come through our letterbox, galleys and e books (through our electronic letterbox) and any other bookish goodies that we want to tell you about. Letterbox Love is intended to showcase upcoming books and build up some excitement for them as well as let you know what is available out there. It is not about competing with other bloggers or boasting of any kind (c'mon, we're British and we don't do drama!)

Review Books

The Oathbreaker's Shadow by Amy McCulloch
I am DYING to read this book and have to thank my amazing friend Viv for getting this for me recently when she met Amy (sadly, I could not go).  Thanks also to Amy for signing it :)

The Madman's Daughter by Megan Shepherd
 This book looks so interesting and I bought the US hardback recently.  I actually asked the publisher not to send this because of that but it got sent anyway!  Not to worry, I'm sure I will find a good home for it. 

Infamous by Sherrilyn Kenyon (Unsolicited)
I've never read this series and I'm probably not going to so this one is going to the library.

By Any Other Name by Laura Jarratt (Unsolicited)
I actually quite like the sound of this book about a girl who witnesses a crime and is put into witness protection, thus having to reinvent herself and basically keep her head down.  I'm intrigued for sure. 

Don't Look Back by S.B. Hayes (Unsolicited)
So this book sounds a little creepy and I really don't know what to make of it as it's not normally the kind of story I would read.  Not sure if I will read this one although I like the idea of reading outside of my comfort zone. 

The Hit by Melvin Burgess (Unsolicited)
This is not my kind of book and so it's going to the library for others to enjoy.

Thank You Publishers!!!

Books Bought

A Touch Menacing by Leah Clifford
I really enjoyed the first book in this series and whilst I'm a little behind, I now have all three books in my possession (no waiting, yay!)


The Truth about Letting Go by Leigh Talbot Moore (Bought)
I bought The Truth about Faking by the same author some time now (which incidentally is 49p for kindle right now) and I just happen to see this for the bargain price of 77p.

Beyond Control by Kit Rocha (Bought)
I read and liked the first book Beyond Shame and this is the sequel.  Of course I had to get this!

Depths by Liz Reinhardt and Steph Campbell (Bought)
I'm not sure if this is a sequel or a companion novel to Lengths by the same authors.  Anyway, I want to read both books and when I heard this had been released, I got it.

Sun Kissed (The Guardian Angel Series Book 2) by Skyla Madi (Free)
I got this because it was free but I'm really intrigued by the first book although I haven't bought it yet.   

Walking Disaster by Jamie McGuire (For Review)
I don't really need to see a lot about this book do I, apart from the fact that I was dying to read it and couldn't believe it when it popped up on Netgalley as a read it now book for the first 250 people to click on the link.  Needless to say, I read it in one sitting the very same night and it was awesome.  Review coming soon.

So, as you can see, this week's book haul was made of win - especially Walking Disaster and The Oathbreaker's Shadow.  I've already read Walking Disaster and I can't wait to get started on The Oathbreaker's Shadow!  I've been really good with the ebooks this week, too so I'm happy about that.  I started reading Gone Girl but put it down and I'm working way through The Collector by Victoria Scott right now.  As always, I hope you had a good week for books and please share your links below.

Thursday 14 March 2013

Elixir Review

Aiden St. Delphi will do anything to save Alex.
Even if it means doing the one thing he will never forgive himself for.
Even if it means making war against the gods.

Picture the scene.  I’m working a night shift and it gets to my break so I start reading Apollyon (which I’d been dying to read) only to realise that I don’t know what the hell is going on.  That was when I remembered about Elixir, the short novella between Deity and Apollyon and got to work on it straight away.     Obviously, it goes without saying that if you haven’t read any of this awesome series yet, look away now or you will encounter spoilers. 

At the end of Deity, Alex reached her 18th birthday and connected with Seth.  His wants and desires became HER wants and desires and it was only a matter of time before Seth found her, drained her and became the God Killer.  AND THAT’S WHERE THE BOOK ENDED!!!!  Elixir picks up where Deity left off, only this time we see through the eyes of Aiden as the book is written in his point of view.  Alex appears to have had a personality transplant overnight and it’s a case of ‘oh, hello evil Alex, what a fun girl you are!’  I have to say that it was fantastic seeing this side to her, kind of like watching Alex’s evil twin take a turn in the spotlight with loyal Aiden, tortured, angst ridden Aiden waiting on the sidelines, refusing to give up hope that Alex will come back to him.  Le sigh.

As the book title suggests, the elixir plays a huge part in this story and you can guess what’s going to happen.  Aiden would do anything for Alex, even if it means making difficult decisions. Even if it means standing up to the Gods.  He’s one brave guy and he’s definitely head over heels for Alex, as if it wasn’t clear before, it definitely is now.      

Basically, the story all boils down to this - there’s a war brewing among the Gods and the only way to stop it is if Alex can break the connection. Alex is a tough girl and a fighter for sure but is she strong to enough to fight the connection taking over and consuming her?

I absolutely loved this novella and for such a short piece, I was surprised just how entertaining it was and how much information we got from it.  It was wonderful to see from Aiden’s perspective and while Seth was really nowhere to be seen, the absence of him was everywhere.  I am definitely ordering the paperback for my collection.  Five stars again for Ms Armentrout. 

Elixir was published on 27th November, 2012.  To find out more about Jennifer L. Armentrout and her books, please click here to visit her website.

Wednesday 13 March 2013

Waiting on Wednesday

"Waiting On Wednesday" is a weekly event, originally started by Jill at Breaking the Spine , that highlights upcoming book releases everyone is waiting on...hence the title. This week's pick is Snakeroot by Andrea Cremer.  Here's the synopsis:

Fans asked for it, and now they've got it! Andrea Cremer is continuing the story she began in in her internationally bestselling trilogy: Nightshade, Wolfsbane and Bloodrose. In this new installment, Bosque Mar haunts the dreams of both Adne and Logan, trying to escape for the Nether, where Calla, Shay and the other Guardians trapped him in the final battle in the War of All Against All. Will he turn Adne to the dark side? Will Logan reclaim his birthright? And will darkness take over our world? In a novel filled with magic, romance and breakneck action, master storytelling Andrea Cremer's newest installment will not disappoint!

So, I'd be shocked if you hadn't heard this out of the blue announcement recently that Andrea Cremer is releasing a FOURTH novel in the Nightshade series, just when we thought the TRILOGY had ended.  I did love the Nightshade series although I didn't like the ending of Bloodrose and I've made no secret of that.  I always had a soft spot for Ariadne and Connor though so it will be nice to revisit with old friends again.  I've got to get this for my collection. 

Snakeroot is published in December, 2013 and I'm sure there will be news of a UK date soon.  

Monday 11 March 2013

Samson's Lovely Mortal Review

Vampire bachelor Samson can't get it up anymore. Not even his shrink can help him. That changes when the lovely mortal auditor Delilah tumbles into his arms after a seemingly random attack. Suddenly there's nothing wrong with his hydraulics - that is, as long as Delilah is the woman in his arms.

His scruples about taking Delilah to bed vanish when his shrink suggests it's the only way to cure his problem. Thinking all he needs is one night with her, Samson indulges in a night of pleasure and passion.

However, another attack on Delilah and a dead body later, and Samson has his hands full: not only with trying to hide the fact he's a vampire, but also with finding out what secrets Delilah harbors for somebody to want her harm.

This is a book about Samson and Delilah but if you’re after the bible story?  THIS IS DEFINITELY NOT IT.  I was in the mood for a sexy, vampire book so I did what any sensible woman would do - I asked twitter and I googled.  I actually found this book on a Goodreads list and as it was number one in said list, it had to be good, right?

I can sum this book up in just four words for you...crap title, good book.

This book does what it says on the tin.  It’s entertaining, it’s steamy in parts and I really enjoyed the tongue in cheekness of the storyline.  Samson is the strong, rich, good looking vampire and owner of Scanguards Security.  He’s well respected in the vampire community and so he doesn’t want his little secret of not being able to get it up, getting out for fear of being a laughing stock.  I mean, who has ever heard of a vampire with erectile dysfunction?!  His little problem seems to disappear however when he stumbles across Delilah but there’s just one problem - she’s mortal and every moment she spends with him is potentially dangerous.  Not just for her life but also for her heart.  Throw in the fact that she’s auditing his company and has found some suspicious behaviour among the books, which points to the fact that there is a traitor in the midst.  And said traitor is not going down without a fight.  The answer is simple, get rid of the auditor.  Yeah, not with Samson around thank you very much *swoons*. 

I really enjoyed reading this book and I loved ALL the characters, particularly the bunch of hot vampire guys that are Samson’s friends (well, who wouldn’t?!) and I’m delighted to tell you that this book is part of a seven book series with each guy pretty much getting a turn in the spotlight. 

I have to tell you something funny before I finish this review.  I’d read one reviewer say that this book grabbed her by the very first line.  Now, as an aspiring writer I’m very much interested in hooks and first lines but when I read the first line, I laughed out loud.  Indeed, the reviewer was right and I’m not knocking the opening line, I just didn’t expect it to be THAT.  You’ll see ;)

If you’re after a hot, entertaining vampire story, then this is definitely the book for you. 

Samson’s Lovely Mortal was published on 25th May, 2010.  To find out more about Tina Folsom, please click here to visit her website.

Sunday 10 March 2013

Letterbox Love (#44)

As always, Letterbox Love is a weekly feature that I'm hosting on the blog and basically, the idea came out of a discussion with other UK book bloggers about the need to do a weekly meme with more of a British feel to it. Therefore, Letterbox Love was born and the logo was lovingly designed by Dark Readers. Letterbox Love is a way for us to share the books that come through our letterbox, galleys and e books (through our electronic letterbox) and any other bookish goodies that we want to tell you about. Letterbox Love is intended to showcase upcoming books and build up some excitement for them as well as let you know what is available out there. It is not about competing with other bloggers or boasting of any kind (c'mon, we're British and we don't do drama!)

Review Books

Scarlet by Marissa Meyer
This is book two in the Lunar Chronicles series and sequel to Cinder, a book I still haven't read yet but have heard tons of good things about it.

Thank You Publishers!!!

Books Bought

Let the Sky Fall by Shannon Messenger
I've had this one on pre-order for what seems like FOREVER now and I'm really looking forward to diving into it!  I've seen nothing but five star reviews for this book and it definitely sounds like my sort of story.  

Emblaze by Jessica Shirvington
I'm a huge fan of the Embrace series and I remember how desperate I was to read the next book after finishing Emblaze.  Well, it's finally here and I'm looking forward to getting stuck in.  May I also just say again at this point how much I love the US hardback covers? Much prettier than the UK paperbacks which need a redesign in my opinion.

Unremembered by Jessica Brody
Ironically, I had forgotten that I had pre-ordered this one.  It sounds AWESOME however and I think I'm really going to enjoy this. 

Gluten Free Bread and Cakes from your Breadmaker by Carolyn Humphries
I love browsing through charity shops every now and then, especially the book section where there are often some hidden gems lurking on the shelves.  I found this for the bargain price of £1.50 and since I've been thinking about making my own bread lately, this is perfect. 

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
If there's one book that I keep hearing about, it's this one.  Everyone who reads it is 'blown away' and I want to know why.  I was trying to wait for the kindle version to come down in price but the paperback was cheaper so I picked it up on my food shop.  I've started it and the beginning of it is taking me out of my comfort zone a bit but I want to carry on, try something different and hopefully enjoy the story. 


Ferryman by Claire McFall
I've only recently found out about this book, due to missing out on blogger's meetings in London, and I'm very intrigued by it.  It definitely sounds like my kind of book and I'm very grateful to my good friend and fellow book blogger Viv for giving me her spare ARC.  If I love it, then I will buy a finished copy for myself :)


The No Sex Clause by Glenys O' Connell (Bought)
I do love a good misunderstanding - this is possibly my favourite kind of contemporary romance novel.  I also like the idea of going back to a high school reunion (after not having a great school experience) and you can show everyone that you've made something of yourself.  Yes, I like the sound of this book which is why I bought it.  I think it's going to be fun.  I'm not quite sure at this point though why the male has to be a billionaire though (there's a lot of them about nowadays, apparently, at least in literary terms) but I'll reserve judgement for now.

Jordyn by Tiffany King (Bought)
This story is about a female demon hunter (nothing new there) but I'm hoping there is something fresh to the novel.  It was on sale for 77p so I'm taking a chance on it :)

Unravel Me by Kendall Ryan (Bought)
Not to be confused with the amazing Tahereh Mafi, this is Kendall Ryan's book and a contemporary erotic romance at that.  I think it sounds really interesting and explores the relationship between patient and doctor (kind of, the main protagonist is a psychology student).  

Make Me Yours by Kendall Ryan (Bought)
This is the conclusion to the above although I believe it features different characters.  There's a volunteer firefighter and that SOLD me without having to know anything else LOL. 

Astarte's Wrath by Trisha Wolfe (Bought)
I keep hearing great things about Trisha Wolfe and I really want to read her books! This is a New Adult and I *think* it's a prequel to Destiny's Fire but I'm told that the books can be read independently of each other.  I love the fact that it's set in ancient Egypt as that setting really appeals to me right now. 

Samson's Lovely Mortal by Tina Folsom (Bought)
Every now and then, I fancy reading a vampire novel and if it's a little steamy? Even better, after all vampires are supposed to be seductive creatures of the night.  I found this at the top of a Goodreads list and whilst the title leaves a lot to be desired, the book is actually quite good.  Look out for my review which goes live on Monday.

The Change: Episode One (The Bachelor Battles) by Angela White (Free)
I think this book has such an original concept and that's what attracted me into getting it, the fact that it's free is just a bonus.

Brood of Bones by A.E. Marling (Free)
I love the cover for this book and the fact that it's a fantasy novel. I think it sounds fascinating and it was free.  Bonus.

I think I did quite well this week on the Ebooks front but there were a lot of book releases which means that I had a few deliveries or at least dispatch notifications of books that I had pre-ordered becoming available.  This week, I have been sorting my office out in an attempt to make it somewhat useful again and I have been culling books.  I've told myself to be ruthless and get rid of anything that I don't love, am not interested in reading again or am unlikely to read.  It's been brutal and I have several carrier bags worth of books that I need to find new homes for.  Some will go to my sister and the rest will either go to the library or the charity shop.  I might even put some of them on ebay (finished copies of course).  Anyway, I hope you had a great week for books and as always, please share your links below.

Thursday 7 March 2013

Sever Review

Time is running out for Rhine in this conclusion to the New York Times bestselling Chemical Garden Trilogy.

With the clock ticking until the virus takes its toll, Rhine is desperate for answers. After enduring Vaughn’s worst, Rhine finds an unlikely ally in his brother, an eccentric inventor named Reed. She takes refuge in his dilapidated house, though the people she left behind refuse to stay in the past. While Gabriel haunts Rhine’s memories, Cecily is determined to be at Rhine’s side, even if Linden’s feelings are still caught between them.

Meanwhile, Rowan’s growing involvement in an underground resistance compels Rhine to reach him before he does something that cannot be undone. But what she discovers along the way has alarming implications for her future—and about the past her parents never had the chance to explain.

In this breathtaking conclusion to Lauren DeStefano’s Chemical Garden trilogy, everything Rhine knows to be true will be irrevocably shattered.

There comes a time when you cannot take being teased anymore.  I kept hearing about reader's shocked reactions to the ending of Sever (chapter twenty four in particular) and I decided there and then that I had to read the book.  I mean, I was going to read it anyway but I have to admit that I wanted to know what all the fuss was about so it got pushed to the front of the TBR pile.  You’ll be pleased to know that I was a good girl and didn’t race ahead to the particularly life altering chapter, I just took my time and found myself easily immersed back into Rhine’s world.  It didn’t hurt to read a few final chapters of Fever beforehand but it is by no means a prerequisite to reading Sever.
As Sever is the third and final book in the Chemical Garden trilogy, obviously you shouldn’t read this review until you’ve read Wither (review here) and Fever (review here) as you WILL encounter spoilers.  Speaking of which, rest assured that there is no way on God’s earth that I’m going to spoil Sever for you.

You may remember that at the end of Fever, Rhine was back at the house of horrors, being experimented on in the basement by Vaughn.  Great.  She’d been taken away from Gabriel and Rhine has no idea what’s real anymore.  Is Cecily really visiting her?  Does Linden know what’s going on? Also, her twin brother Rowan, the very person she has been searching for throughout the entire series has been found but can she get to him? WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN? *collapses in a heap*

I can’t even begin to talk about the plot for fear of giving something away but it really is a case of ‘All will be revealed’. Something about Fever that really bugged me was the fact that Rhine continued to wear her wedding ring throughout the book, despite the fact that she had run away from that life.  I didn’t understand why and it was a question that plagued me until Lauren provided the answer in Sever.  THANK GOODNESS.  There are some pretty shocking twists to the tale, revelations that will make you curse out loud and a particular incident that will change everything.  Lauren Destefano hits you hard in this book and Does. Not. Stop. Until she knows you’re down for the count.   After reading, I knew I needed time to think about the book and I actually think she depressed me!  Evil author *grumbles*.

I have to say that it was nice to see some of the old characters again like “ze crazy Madame” as well as some of the regular’s like Vaughn, Rhine, Gabriel, Linden and Cecily.  I find it interesting that the absence of Rose contributes massively to her presence throughout the book and indeed the series.  For a dead character, she’s very much alive in the hearts and minds of the characters and indeed, the reader. 

I have thoroughly enjoyed this series and it may come as a shock to you to learn that my favourite character is actually Vaughn. He is darkly complex and whilst in the beginning I thought of him as some evil, twisted excuse of a man, I came to understand him and realise his intentions were actually quite noble.  I loved how Lauren challenged me as a reader and made me change my mind about him.  In the end, I actually felt sorry for him.  Yes, you read that right.

Overall, this is an explosive end to a great series and Lauren has definitely made a fan out of me.  I’m already planning on pre-ordering her next book as soon as it’s available.  I’m kind of sad to say goodbye to these characters but I know I can visit them anytime I want to.

Sever was published on 14th February, 2013.  To find out more about Lauren Destefano and her books, please click here to visit her website.

Wednesday 6 March 2013

Waiting on Wednesday

"Waiting On Wednesday" is a weekly event, originally started by Jill at Breaking the Spine , that highlights upcoming book releases everyone is waiting on...hence the title. This week's pick is These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner. Here's the synopsis:

It's a night like any other on board the Icarus. Then, catastrophe strikes: the massive luxury spaceliner is yanked out of hyperspace and plummets into the nearest planet. Lilac LaRoux and Tarver Merendsen survive. And they seem to be alone.

Lilac is the daughter of the richest man in the universe. Tarver comes from nothing, a young war hero who learned long ago that girls like Lilac are more trouble than they’re worth. But with only each other to rely on, Lilac and Tarver must work together, making a tortuous journey across the eerie, deserted terrain to seek help.

Then, against all odds, Lilac and Tarver find a strange blessing in the tragedy that has thrown them into each other’s arms. Without the hope of a future together in their own world, they begin to wonder—would they be better off staying here forever?

Everything changes when they uncover the truth behind the chilling whispers that haunt their every step. Lilac and Tarver may find a way off this planet. But they won’t be the same people who landed on it.

The first in a sweeping science fiction trilogy, These Broken Stars is a timeless love story about hope and survival in the face of unthinkable odds.

THIS BOOK has me excited.  Not only is the cover beautifully breathtaking (although it reminds me a little of Tempest by Julie Cross) but the synopsis has me practically wetting myself.  It sounds a little like Titanic in space and my God, I can't wait to read it.  Beth Revis (author of Across the Universe) loved it and if it's good enough for her, I know it's good enough for me.  I'm jumping on the pre-order bandwagon as soon as it comes up on Amazon.  We've got a bit of a wait for this one I'm afraid as it's not published until November/December 2013 with no news YET of a UK release.  

Tuesday 5 March 2013

Born Wicked Winners

As part of the Born Wicked UK Blog Tour,  I offered to give away three copies of the UK paperback and I am delighted to announce the winners on the blog today.  Sadly, no one left their contact details so I'm hoping they get back to me within 48 hours or else I'll be forced to pick another winner.  You should know that the winners were chosen at random by an online random number generator. 

Without further ado, the winners are:

Jess Watkins

Laura @ Bookish Treasures

Dora The Explorer

Congratulations to the winners and thank you to everyone who entered.  Please e mail me ( with your contact details so I can arrange to send the book out to you. 

The Prince Review

Before thirty-five girls were chosen to compete in the Selection...

Before Aspen broke America's heart...

There was another girl in Prince Maxon's life...

If you loved The Selection by Kiera Cass as much as I did (my review is here if you’re interested), then like me you’ve been eagerly anticipating the next installment.  I am positively chomping at the bit to read The Elite and so I’m really glad The Prince was released now to satiate my appetite somewhat.  Despite being a short novella, I feel like I’ve had my Maxon fix whilst I wait for the sequel and I have decided in my infinite wisdom that I am full on Team Maxon.  As far as I’m concerned, Aspen had his shot and blew it.  Besides, he could never offer the security that Maxon can.

The Prince is a short novella told from Prince Maxon’s point of view and is set just before The Selection.  I have to admit that as much as I love him, I’m really not sure how I feel about seeing inside his head.  In The Selection, I seem to remember him coming across as a confident and charming prince but The Prince shows us his worries and insecurities. On the plus side, this does serve to make him look more like a normal human being - I mean, yes he is a prince but he’s also just a man and if I’m honest, I also enjoyed seeing America through his eyes.

I’m wondering if the new information (particularly about his friend Daphne) will serve a purpose somewhere along the way and I wouldn’t be surprised if she popped up again in the future.

Overall, I enjoyed The Prince and it was worth staying up after midnight to read it as soon as it was released.  I was also very grateful to find the first two chapters of The Elite in the back of the book.  Now I just need the rest!!!

The Prince was published on 5th March, 2013 in the US and the UK.   The Elite is published on 23rd April, 2013.  To find out more about Kiera and her books, please click here to visit her website.

Sunday 3 March 2013

Letterbox Love (#43)

As always, Letterbox Love is a weekly feature that I'm hosting on the blog and basically, the idea came out of a discussion with other UK book bloggers about the need to do a weekly meme with more of a British feel to it. Therefore, Letterbox Love was born and the logo was lovingly designed by Dark Readers. Letterbox Love is a way for us to share the books that come through our letterbox, galleys and e books (through our electronic letterbox) and any other bookish goodies that we want to tell you about. Letterbox Love is intended to showcase upcoming books and build up some excitement for them as well as let you know what is available out there. It is not about competing with other bloggers or boasting of any kind (c'mon, we're British and we don't do drama!)

Review Books

No review books this week

Books Bought

Pivot Point by Kasie West
I have heard nothing but praise for this book around the blogosphere and I like the idea that the main character can see into the future and affect her own life by using the knowledge she gains.  In some ways, it reminds me of Touched by Cyn Balog in that respect.  Definitely looking forward to reading this.

Wait for You by J. Lynn (Bought)
It's Jennifer L. Armentrout, need I say more?  I read the first few chapters of this and was eager for more (as always).  Can't wait to dive in :)

Beneath This Man by Jodi Ellen Malpas (Bought)
I just read This Man (the first book) and HAD TO buy the second book which was sadly more expensive (grrrr).  I loved this one too and I'm hoping to get my reviews out soon. 

The Cirque by Ryann Kerekes (Bought)
I think this sounds really interesting and I love the fact that it's set in a circus which is an original setting for this kind of book. 

Promise by Kristie Cook (Free)
I got this because it has won awards and has some high praise for it.  It looks like an angel/demon book with a bit of steaminess to it which is always good! 

Big Girls Do It Better by Jasinder Wilder (Free)
I like the idea that this is about a bigger girl, especially as lot of romance and erotica features a petite, stunning looking girl.  THAT'S why I want to read this. 

Tempt Me by Isabel Morin (Free)
This is a 28,000 novella so it will be quick to read and I think it sounds potentially entertaining.

It's been a slow week for review books (although I have had to reschedule a parcel delivery - admittedly, I have no idea what it is) but I'm not complaining, I've got MORE THAN ENOUGH to be reading.  I decided after a week of seeing torturous tweets about Lauren Destefano's Sever, I had to read it so that's what I'm reading right now.  I'm desperately trying NOT to rush ahead to the infamous chapter 24 which apparently has caused a lot of shock reactions from readers.  We shall see my friends, we shall see...

I hope you had a great week for books and as always, please share your links below.