31 Oct 2012

UK vs THE WORLD (43)

UK vs. The world is a weekly meme I made up lol.
It's simlair to UK vs. US except the UK covers are battling it out with their foreign counterparts from all over the world, because who doesn't love judging books by their covers!

UK                         vs                         Italy
Paranormalcy book two.
('Caccia alle fate' translates to 'Hunting the fairies.' - According to Google translate.)

Mist: These are both stunning but the lightening in the Italian cover wins it for me, I love a good picture of lightening! I also love the colour of the sky more in the Italian cover and the girls windswept hair. The UK cover is pretty but I've seen plenty like it but I do like the flowers :)

Ninfa: The UK cover is lovely, I like the dark red hues, the burgundy flowing dress and the model is very pretty, however, the Italian cover is just gorgeous! The lighting at the end of the field, the stark figure of the girl with the billowing dress and the fuchsia sky, everything is just so haunting and captivating. I love it. Italy wins :)

Which do you prefer?

30 Oct 2012

Blood red road - Review

Blood red road by Moira Young
Dust lands book one.
Available now
www.scholastic.co.uk

What's it about?
In a wild and lawless future, where life is cheap and survival is hard, eighteen-year-old Saba lives with her father, her twin brother Lugh, her young sister Emmi and her pet crow Nero. Theirs is a hard and lonely life. The family resides in a secluded shed, their nearest neighbour living many miles away and the lake, their only source of water and main provider of food, gradually dying from the lack of rain. But Saba's father refuses to leave the place where he buried his beloved wife, Allis, nine years ago. Allis died giving birth to Emmi, and Saba has never forgiven her sister for their mother's death.
But while she despises Emmi, Saba adores her twin brother Lugh. Golden-haired and blue-eyed, loving and good, he seems the complete opposite to dark-haired Saba, who is full of anger and driven by a ruthless survival instinct. To Saba, Lugh is her light and she is his shadow, he is the day, she is the nighttime, he is beautiful, she is ugly, he is good, she is bad.
So Saba's small world is brutally torn apart, when a group of armed riders arrives five day's after the twin's eighteenth birthday snatch Lugh away. Saba's rage is so wild, that she manages to drive the men away, but not before they have captured Lugh and killed their father.
Other books in the series (Link to my review)
Rebel heart - Book two
My review
Blood red road took a little getting into for me, just because of the way it is written, it took me a while to figure out Sabas accent so I could get it right in my head and the book doesn't use quotation marks for speech so sometimes I didn't know if she was saying things out loud or thinking them. But once I got past the initial awkwardness, and with the mark of a great book, I eventually didn't even notice the things I'd struggled with in the start.
Saba is a great character, I liked her act before she thinks nature and hot headedness, she made for an unpredictable character and kept the book alive, although I didn't always like her, it was great to see how she cared for her brother so much she'd do anything to get him back. But on the other hand she was the opposite to her little sister, in a way I can see why, but still, it wasn't nice.
One of the things I really liked about Jack was that he called her out on these things when no one else would.
Generally, the story itself isn't too complex, Sabas brother is kidnapped and she sets about to find and rescue him and events ensue along the way, but its the events that lead up to us meeting new characters and getting to the end that made the book good, it was an adventure.
At each turn, I didn't know what I would be getting, who I'd be meeting and how it would affect the group dynamic or interfere with Sabas quest, it was very exciting and following Saba on her journey really set up the world she lives in and continually builds the suspense.
Its a good start to a series and left me wanting to find out more and see what happens next for Saba, Jack and everyone else involved.

My thoughts on the cover
First off, I love the red, its always an eye catching colour and I really like the way the girl is in silhouette with her hair blowing in the wind, its a very cool cover.

Favourite quotes
'If you save somebody's life three times, their life belongs to you. You saved my life today, that makes once. Save it twice more an I'm all yers.
I'll just hafta make sure that don't happen, I says.'


'He drops the torch. He pushes me aginst the wall. Then his mouth is on mine an he's kissin me like he's starvin or dyin of thirst or somethin.'

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29 Oct 2012

The arrogant man - Review


The corpses of Old farm hill road book one.
Available 31st October 2012 

What's it about?

He wakes up every morning knowing the world owes him something. Every woman was created for his demand, except for Vanessa Roundtree and her mother. Once lured onto their farm in the middle of nowhere he becomes their prey. As they torment his body, they break down his arrogance. Will he be able to escape? Or will he become just another of the corpses of Old Farm Hill Road? 
My review 
I don't read that much horror fiction but around this time of year I like to pick up a few and when I do I like them to be bloody and violent as I'm not weak stomached and The arrogant man had both of these things so I was happy.
It starts off with Mathew, who is every bit the arrogant man the title suggests, I really didn't like him but I certainly wouldn't say he deserved what he got.
The girls come up with some imaginative tortures for their hostage and it was thrilling to read wondering if he would escape or not and what else might become of him.
Although this is a short story, I'd like to have seen more to be honest, the ending felt a bit abrupt and I wouldn't have minded more gory details, but it was well written and good for a quick read.
I'm completely intrigued to see what becomes of the girls in this series, how many more innocent victims they might try to claim and if they'll get caught.

My thoughts on the cover
This simple cover has a really eerie feel to it, especially since its in black and grey, rather than colour, it just gives it that creepy edge. You can't tell if the girl is a ghost or not, or I can't lol which I think adds to the creep factor, its a good cover :)

Favourite quotes
'"What are you doing?" He cried as he fell to his knees and then to the floor. "Playing," she said to him as she jerked the hook wildly, tearing through the skin and bone.'


'With one last breath he rolled himself over, flinging himself from the egde of the loft boards. He begged for death as his body rolled through the air, falling to the hard ground.'

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25 Oct 2012

Same difference (35)

'Same difference' is an irregular feature I do whenever I come across two or more covers that share a cover model or item.


Once every never by Lesley Livingston 
Never book one.
And
Paranormalcy book one.

If you haven't already guessed it, that there second cover is the Italian cover for Paranormalcy. I love them both! The colours for the Once every never cover are gorgeous but I love the forest scene and full shot of the girl in the second cover so its really a tough choice!

Which do you prefer?

24 Oct 2012

UK vs THE WORLD (42)

UK vs. The world is a weekly meme I made up lol.
It's simlair to UK vs. US except the UK covers are battling it out with their foreign counterparts from all over the world, because who doesn't love judging books by their covers!

UK                          vs                             US

Mist: This is an easy one for me, a definite UK win, it has more of a 'London' feel to it and is darker, I get more of a feel for the book from it than I do from the US cover which actually feels a bit dated and kind of boring.

Ninfa: The UK cover has a darker feeling and considering the title I'm guessing there's an element of Oliver Twist in the tale. Based on that, the UK cover is definitely a winner, the US cover is too child like and cartoon-ish for my taste, and I love the London background and the darkness of the UK cover.

Which do you prefer?

23 Oct 2012

Devil's bargain - Review


Red letter days book one.
Available now.
www.mirabooks.co.uk 

What's it about?

What's the price of a deal with the devil?
Playing by the psychic underworld's rules has cost.
Jazz Callender's whole life just got turned upside down. Her friend Ben's been convicted of a crime he didn't commit, and Jazz is determined to clear his name, even if it means enlisting the help of dark forces.
Enter James, a stranger with a mysterious offer. If Jazz pledges to work for The Cross Society, a shadowy secret organisation, he'll help her save Ben.
But as she's thrust into a world of psychic powers and dangerous magic, Jazz isn't just bargain for her friend's freedom. She's bargaining for her soul too.
And how high a price is she willing to pay?
My review
As usual Caines writing is on point in Devil's bargain, She's a great storyteller and brings wonderful characters to the table, I really liked Jazz's attitude.
I really enjoyed the story but from the description, I was expecting it to be a lot more on the paranormal side than it was, it did have the psychic elements mentioned but they aren't really touched upon until closer to the end of the book. This felt more like a mystery, crime type of book, something that I wouldn't normally pick up but it was still enjoyable, Jazz was a good character full of sass and attitude but when she's alone we see her worries and fears that she hides when she's in company. Her relationship with James is interesting to watch as she fights her lust for him but she can't help that she's attracted to him, it gets very tense.
I really liked Lucia as well, she's so immaculately put together but deadly at the same time its hard not to admire her.
I didn't like that a few times the book just skipped a month or two ahead, it messed with the flow a bit but there were some really exciting, action packed scenes and a little mystery to keep you guessing.
Overall, I liked the book and think fans of the author will like it too. I am planning to read book two which I hope will have a bit more of a supernatural element to it.

My thoughts on the cover
I love how this cover matches the cover for her Morganville series because they all sit prettily together on the shelf and I love the girls green eye and red lips.

Favourite quotes
'The office's waiting silence closed around them. He still hadn't taken his hand off her, and she hadn't insisted, by word or motion, that he do it. Her eyes met his, and she felt a jolt deep inside, something warm and frighteningly real.'


'He had that kind of mouth. It just... begged to be licked, especially when there were beads of Arthur Bryant sauce clinging to it.'


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18 Oct 2012

Same difference (34)

'Same difference' is an irregular feature I post when I find book covers that share a model or item.


Time riders book six.
And
Ashes trilogy book two.

As you can tell these two covers share a model but they very different. Personally I love the dark green colour of Shadows and I think its my favourite of the two, City of shadows just has so much going on on it but it is a pretty cool cover none the less.
Thank you Braiden from Book probe for the tip!

Which do you prefer?

17 Oct 2012

UK vs THE WORLD (41)

UK vs. The world is a weekly meme I made up lol.
It's simlair to UK vs. US except the UK covers are battling it out with their foreign counterparts from all over the world, because who doesn't love judging books by their covers!

UK                        vs                Germany
Peter Grant book one.
('Die Fl├╝sse von London' translates to 'The rivers of London.' - According to Google translate.)

Mist: These covers are so similar its hard to decide on a favourite, both have the same feel to them but I do like the skulls and the frame on the German cover and the way the authors name is set on a banner so I think I'll be choosing the German cover as my winner this week.

Ninfa: These covers are practically the same, they have the same feel, very similar graphics and colours...choosing is rather difficult, I like them both and there's very little to differentiate them!...If I have to choose, and this is only because of a tiny detail, I'd go with the German cover, just because I like the top of the cover and how they did the author name, love the skull and top hat chaps :)

Which do you prefer?

16 Oct 2012

The hex factor - Review


Available now.
www.stripespublishing.co.uk 

What's it about?

Xanthe Fox can't wait to turn thirteen, but as the big day arrives her world starts to fall apart. Set-up at school for something she didn't do, it seems her age-old enemy, Kelly, is making trouble for her...and as things escalate, even her best friend Saul starts to doubt her innocence. With the school threatening to expel her, and mysterious glowing Xs appearing in front of her eyes, Xanthe turns to Grandma Alice for help. But what the old lady tells her will change Xanthe's life for ever...
My review
The hex factor is an imaginative, fun book for younger readers. I really liked the story, it was simple yet a different idea to some other witchy books I've read in the past.
Its only downfall for me was the characters lacked much personality, the dialogue was all similar and short, everybody talked the same and there was no real use of slang or much conversation beyond what needed to be said to move the story along, so I didn't really feel I got to know the characters as much as I could have.
That being said, I did enjoy the book, okay, I guessed the twist pretty early on but then this book is aimed at an audience much younger than myself and I know they likely wouldn't as it was well done.
I liked what the author has come up with in her take on witches and think this will be a great, quick, halloween read for anyone that prefers something a little spooky over horror books. It has a well thought out mythology, a great plot, good pacing and a well rounded story.

My thoughts on the cover
I really like this cover, its dark and fun at the same time and I think it stands out, I love the huge moon and the lightening.

Favourite quotes
'She held up the battered little oval of silver by its chain and cast her eyes over it. On the back she could just make out the faded shape of a letter E engraved into the casing, something she'd not seen when it hung round her great-grandmother's neck. "What d'you think that stands for?" she asked, holding the locket out to her mother.'


'"I am Xanthe Fox," she repeated to herself. "I am a True Witch."'


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15 Oct 2012

Bewitched - Quickie review


Heven and hell book 2.5
Available now. 

What's it about?

For years, I accepted that Heven was more popular than me. I never liked it but I lived with it. I walked in her shadow, I stood by her when no one else would. When I finally thought her spotlight was mine things began to change. She began to change. Now she hardly ever calls me back, she spends all her time with her hot new boyfriend and everyone at school thinks she’s back on top. She had it all. But apparently she wants more. She wants Cole – my boyfriend. What’s worse is that it looks like she got him. I’ve had enough and she’s going to be sorry. Why?
Because I am bewitched.

Other books in the series:
(Links to my reviews)
Before - Book 0.5
Masquerade - Book one
Between - Book 1.5
Charade - Book two
My review
Although Kimber is quite a bitchy character I didn't find her difficult to get on with when reading this short novella, in fact the story made me understand her motives more and how she was misled, but then I guess that was the point lol.
Bewitched tells select 'in between' scenes of Charade from Kimber's perspective, there is a few instances of jumping ahead which makes the book a little less fluid but not less enjoyable.
I'd strongly recommend reading Charade before you pick this up if you prefer to avoid spoilers but its not one to be missed either as it answered a lot of questions I had when I'd finished reading Charade and I think it makes a great little addition to the series.

My thoughts on the cover
I do like this cover, the colours are really eye catching and I like the little skeleton hand at the bottom which isn't noticeable right away.

Favourite quote
'Finding out what was going on with Heven and Cole was a definite must, but getting hacked into little pieces by some stalker wouldn't accomplish that. And it would ruin my hair.'



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14 Oct 2012

Showcase Sunday (22)

'Showcase Sunday' is hosted by Vicky at Books, biscuits and tea.

8th Sept - 14th Sept

Books mentioned
Bought
Gift
For review

EBooks
Bought
Bewitched by Cambria Hebert - This is a short novella from the Heven and hell series, I've already read and enjoyed it and will have a little review up soon.
For review
The kiss off by Sarah Billington - I'll be taking part in the blog tour for this one early in December and plan to review it around that time.
The corpses of old farm hill road: The arrogant man by Tabitha Short - Sounds like a great creepy halloween read!

Audiobooks
I've been stockpiling my audible credits for some months now and finally decided to blow them! I picked up The raven boys by Maggie Stiefvater which I'm hearing great things about, 13 little blue envelopes by Maureen JohnsonSome girls are by Courtney Summers which I've already started and am liking, Burn for burn by Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian and Team human by Sarah Rees Brennan and Justine Larbalestier.

What did you get this week?

13 Oct 2012

Between - Quickie review


Heven and hell book 1.5
Available now. 

What's it about?

I grew up in a comfortable house with two parents and a white-picket fence. My brother, Sam, and I used to play with sticks in the backyard and pretend they were swords. There were always cookies on the table and milk in the fridge. Then, one day, things changed.
Sam changed.
Life was never the same again. Sam left. My parents abandoned him when he needed them most, and I was left to survive in a house that was merely a shell of what it used to be. Mom cried all the time and Dad expected me to fill the void my brother left behind. But mostly, all we did was pretend. We pretended that things weren’t messed up. We pretended that Sam never existed.
Until I changed, too.
Now, everything’s a mess and I’m so confused. It’s like there are two different people trapped inside one body—my body—and one of them wants out. I do things. Bad things and I don’t know how to stop. I’m not sure I want to. The only way I can be normal again is if I find Sam. He’ll know what to do.
He has too.
Other books in the series:
(Links to my reviews)
Before - Book 0.5
Masquerade - Book one
Charade - Book two
Bewitched - Book 2.5
My review
This short little novella is a great insight into what happened to Logan before we are introduced to him at the end of Masquerade and I really enjoyed it. I really felt I got a glimpse into what his life had been like, how miserable it was and it helped me emphasize with him a lot more than I had before when I'd read Charade because I read these books out of order lol.
I think its a lovely little addition to this great series and whilst your not missing anything major in regards to the storyline if you skip this, it does give you a better prospective on Logan and for that I think it's worth picking it.

My thoughts on the cover
I think this is one of my favourite covers from the series so far, I like the lone character on the train tracks with his head now and the creepy shadow with the red eyes is intriguing to say the least.

Favourite quote
'Underneath it all, one thing repeated like a mantra, eventually lulling me to sleep. I wished my brother was here.'



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12 Oct 2012

Lucid - Review


Brightest kind of darkness book two.
Available now. 

What's it about?

Once Nara combines her prophetic ability with Ethan’s power to outsmart Fate at his own deadly cat-and-mouse game, she’s more determined than ever to help Ethan learn the meaning behind the raven sword tattoo that suddenly appeared on his back after their confrontation with Fate.
During her quest to uncover the tattoo’s secrets, Nara enlists the help of some new friends and discovers her own surprising connection to Ethan.
While Nara digs deeper into the mystery, her desire for answers leads her down a dangerous path full of powerful and ruthless enemies. Swept into an age-old battle, Nara quickly learns that keeping one’s enemies close can be a necessary evil, making an intangible enemy she can control far more preferable to the human enemies she can’t.
Previous books in the series
(links to my review)
Brightest kind of darkness - Book one.
My review
I really enjoyed book one, Brightest kind of darkness, so as you can imagine I've been excited to get my hands on Lucid, but unfortunately I just didn't enjoy it as much as book one, more because of the characters than the story.
Lets start with Nara, after the things she went through in book one she was just way to naive in this, putting things down to coincidence when they obviously were something more and never spotting signs of danger, surely after the battle she encountered in Brightest kind of darkness she'd be on her guard a lot more.
Next was new character Drystan, now as a person I didn't mind him, he was nice, caring and protective, however the thing that got to me is that he was from Wales BUT his accent was written that seemed more like he talked like a Londoner with some Irish phrases also thrown in. It just felt like the author wanted a character from another country, perhaps to give him an exotic twist but didn't actually research the place she'd picked. I'm also supposed to be impressed that he knows Parkour moves but I don't know what that is as its not really explained what Parkour is in the book? When the characters are introduced to it themselves they're told its easier to be shown than have it explained and so they watch a video which left the reader out from finding out what it is.
There was another new character, Harper, whom I thought could've used some more development, she wasn't really in the book much, I think she got lost amongst all the drama.
Then there's Ethan, he was hardly in the book and I missed him a lot but when he finally did reappear he was mysterious and dark and not the indie boy I fell in love with reading book one.
So all in all I'd say character wise Lucid was a let down for me, I just didn't connect with them.
The pacing of the book was good though, the storyline was full of mystery and there was always something going on, these are the things that kept me intrigued when I couldn't get along with the characters and had me finishing the book.
I was a bit confused by the end about what's going on and what everything means, but I guess that's the point really lol I have tons of questions and curiosities that are probably enough to have me picking up book three.

My thoughts on the cover
This cover is gorgeous and fits in well with the cover of book one, it also ties in with a scene from the book so it gets full marks from me :)

Favourite quotes
'"Cross my heart-" I started to whisper, but Ethan cut me off, pressing his lips to mine with a fierceness that sent fire shooting through my veins. I tugged him even closer, loving that his heady kiss sealed our promise better than words ever could.'


'Wrapping my arms around his shoulders, I kissed him back with all the longing and worry and fear I'd felt during his absence. God, I missed him... missed our connection so very much.'

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11 Oct 2012

Announcing UK appreciation month


Hey guys, I'm proud to announce that for the month of November 2012 myself and Donna from Book passion for life are hosting UK appreciation month!
Its a month to show off our appreciation and celebrate all our fabulous UK authors and the UK itself by getting the word out about them and their books and highlighting our favourite places.

The month will be full of guests posts, interviews and giveaways.
Some authors already on board are David Massey, Janet Edwards, Dianna Hardy, Alexnader Gordon Smith and our own Ninfa Hayes and many, many more.

If your an author or publisher and would like to take part then please email me at Bookaholics@live.co.uk

We look forward to seeing you in November!
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