Saturday, 28 May 2016

Review: A Breath of Snow and Ashes by Diana Gabaldon

Title: A Breath of Snow and Ashes
Series: Outlander #6
Author: Diana Gabaldon
Publisher: Arrow
Pages: 1424
Genres: Historical Fantasy, Time-Travel

A Breath of Snow and Ashes

The long fuse of rebellion has already been lit.

It's 1772, the Royal Colony of North Carolina, and the governor calls upon Jamie Fraser to unite the backcountry and preserve the colony for King and Crown.

One minor problem: Jamie Fraser's wife, Claire, is a time-traveller, as are his daughter and son-in-law. And Jamie knows that three years hence, the shot heard round the world will be fired, and the end of it all will be independence - with those loyal to the King either dead or in exile.

Beyond present danger, though, looms the threat of a tiny clipping from the Wilmington Gazette, dated 1776, which reports the destruction of the house on Fraser's Ridge and the death by fire of James Fraser and all his family. For once, Jamie Fraser hopes the time-travelers in his family are wrong about the future. But only time will tell.

Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Review: Sunstone Vol. 1 by Stjepan Šejić

Title: Sunstone Vol. 1
Series: Sunstone #1
Written By: Stjepan Šejić
Art by: Stjepan Šejić
Publisher: Image
Pages: 128
Genres: Comics, Romance

Sunstone Vol. 1

Two women deal with modern themes of sex, relationships, and fetishism in this erotic romantic comedy. So beware all who enter, because, to quote a few hundred thousand readers on DeviantArt: "I'm not into BDSM...but this story...I get it."

Monday, 23 May 2016

Review: The 52nd by Dela

Title: The 52nd
Author: Dela
Publisher: Wise Ink Creative Publishing
Pages: 461
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal, Young Adult
Source: Review copy from the publisher

The 52nd
Not one of the sacrifices chosen over the long history had survived--until now.

On the tip of the Yucatan peninsula, the immortal Castillo family gathers in Tulum. Weary and haunted, they receive the names of fifty-two human sacrifices chosen once every fifty-two years for the Underworld, a tradition thought to have disappeared with the fall of the Aztec and Mayan empires.

Driving home one night, college freshman Zara Moss swerves to avoid hitting a ghastly figure in the road. Lucas Castillo witnesses the car crash, but when it comes time to supervise her abduction from the wreckage, he intervenes. Something is different about Zara: Lucas has been having dreams of her arrival for five hundred years.

As Lucas and Zara come together to put an end to the bloody sacrifices, they discover that the ancient tradition isn't so easily broken. The gods are angry, and they have until the Winter Solstice to drag Zara to the Underworld.

Sunday, 22 May 2016

Review: Anya's Ghost by Vera Brosgol

Title: Anya's Ghost
Author: Vera Brosgol
Publisher: First Second
Pages: 224
Genres: Graphic Novel

Anya's Ghost
Of all the things Anya expected to find at the bottom of an old well, a new friend was not one of them. Especially not a new friend who’s been dead for a century.

Falling down a well is bad enough, but Anya's normal life might actually be worse. She's embarrassed by her family, self-conscious about her body, and she's pretty much given up on fitting in at school. A new friend--even a ghost--is just what she needs.

But Anya's new B.F.F. isn't kidding about the "forever" part...

Saturday, 21 May 2016

Review: The Vegetarian by Han Kang

Title: The Vegetarian
Author: Han Kang
Translated by: Deborah Smith
Publisher: Portobello Books
Pages: 183
Genres: Literary Fiction

The Vegetarian
Yeong-hye and her husband are ordinary people. He is an office worker with moderate ambitions and mild manners; she is an uninspired but dutiful wife. The acceptable flatline of their marriage is interrupted when Yeong-hye, seeking a more 'plant-like' existence, decides to become a vegetarian, prompted by grotesque recurring nightmares. In South Korea, where vegetarianism is almost unheard-of and societal mores are strictly obeyed, Yeong-hye's decision is a shocking act of subversion. Her passive rebellion manifests in ever more bizarre and frightening forms, leading her bland husband to self-justified acts of sexual sadism. His cruelties drive her towards attempted suicide and hospitalisation. She unknowingly captivates her sister's husband, a video artist. She becomes the focus of his increasingly erotic and unhinged artworks, while spiralling further and further into her fantasies of abandoning her fleshly prison and becoming - impossibly, ecstatically - a tree.

Thursday, 19 May 2016

Review: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

Title: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
Author: Lewis Carroll
Illustrated by: John Tenniel
Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books
Pages: 208
Genres: Children's

Paper Towns
On a golden afternoon, young Alice follows a White Rabbit, who disappears down a nearby rabbit hole. Quickly following him, she tumbles into the burrow - and enters the merry, topsy-turvy world of Wonderland. A series of whimsical escapades and nonsensical obstacles dictate Alice's journey, which culminates in a madcap encounter with the Queen of Hearts - and her army of playing cards! Is it all a dream, or just an alternate reality...?

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Review: Paper Towns by John Green

Title: Paper Towns
Author: John Green
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Pages: 305
Genres:Young Adult, Contemporary

Paper Towns
When Margo Roth Spiegelman beckons Quentin Jacobsen in the middle of the night—dressed like a ninja and plotting an ingenious campaign of revenge—he follows her. Margo’s always planned extravagantly, and, until now, she’s always planned solo. After a lifetime of loving Margo from afar, things are finally looking up for Q . . . until day breaks and she has vanished. Always an enigma, Margo has now become a mystery. But there are clues. And they’re for Q.

Sunday, 15 May 2016

Review: Perfect Days by Raphael Montes

Title: Perfect Days
Author: Raphael Montes
Translated By: Alison Entrekin
Publisher: Penguin Press
Pages: 272
Genres: Psychological Thriller

Perfect Days
A twisted young medical student kidnaps the girl of his dreams and embarks on a dark and delirious road trip across Brazil in the English-language debut of Brazil’s most celebrated young crime writer.

Teo Avelar is a loner. He lives with his paraplegic mother and her dog in Rio de Janeiro, he doesn’t have many friends, and the only time he feels honest human emotion is in the presence of his medical school cadaver—that is, until he meets Clarice. She’s almost his exact opposite: exotic, spontaneous, unafraid to speak her mind. An aspiring screenwriter, she’s working on a screenplay called Perfect Days about three friends who go on a road trip across Brazil in search of romance. Teo is obsessed. He begins to stalk her, first following her to her university, then to her home, and when she ultimately rejects him, he kidnaps her and they embark upon their very own twisted odyssey across Brazil, tracing the same route outlined in her screenplay. Through it all, Teo is certain that time is all he needs to prove to Clarice that they are made for each other, that time is all he needs to make her fall in love with him. But as the journey progresses, he digs himself deeper and deeper into a pit that he can’t get out of, stopping at nothing to ensure that no one gets in the way of their life together.

Saturday, 14 May 2016

Review: Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë

Title: Jane Eyre
Author: Charlotte Brontë
Publisher: Vintage Classics
Pages: 672
Genres: Classics, Romance

Furiously Happy
As an orphan, Jane's childhood is full of trouble, but her stubborn independence and sense of self help her to steer through the miseries inflicted by cruel relatives and a brutal school. A position as governess at the Thornfield Hall promises a kind of freedom. But Thornfield is a house full of secrets, its master a passionate, tormented man, and before long Jane faces her greatest struggle in a choice between love and self-respect.

Friday, 13 May 2016

Review: Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things by Jenny Lawson

Title: Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things
Author: Jenny Lawson
Publisher: Picador
Pages: 256
Genres: Non Fiction, Memoir

Furiously Happy
In Let's Pretend This Never Happened, Jenny Lawson regaled readers with uproarious stories of her bizarre childhood. In her new book, Furiously Happy, she explores her lifelong battle with mental illness. A hysterical, ridiculous book about crippling depression and anxiety? That sounds like a terrible idea. And terrible ideas are what Jenny does best.

As Jenny says: "You can't experience pain without also experiencing the baffling and ridiculous moments of being fiercely, unapologetically, intensely and (above all) furiously happy." It's a philosophy that has – quite literally – saved her life.

Jenny's first book, Let's Pretend This Never Happened, was ostensibly about family, but deep down it was about celebrating your own weirdness. Furiously Happy is a book about mental illness, but under the surface it's about embracing joy in fantastic and outrageous ways. And who doesn't need a bit more of that?

Sunday, 8 May 2016

Review: Can You Keep a Secret? by Sophie Kinsella

Title: Can You Keep a Secret?
Author: Sophie Kinsella
Publisher: Black Swan
Pages: 368
Genres: Romance, Contemporary

Can You Keep a Secret?
Nervous flyer Emma is sitting on a turbulent plane. She really thinks that this could be her last moment. So, naturally enough, she starts telling the man sitting next to her - quite a dishy American, but she's too frightened to notice - all her secrets. How she scans the backs of intellectual books and pretends she's read them. How she's not sure if she has a G-spot, and whether her boyfriend could find it anyway. How she feels like a fraud at work - everyone uses the word 'operational' all the time but she hasn't a clue what it means. How she once threw a troublesome client file in the bin. If ever there was a bare soul, it's hers.

She survives the flight, of course, and the next morning the famous founding boss of the whole mega corporation she works for is coming for a look at the UK branch. As he walks around, Emma looks up and realises...

It's the man from the plane.

What will he do with her secrets? He knows them all - but she doesn't know a single one of his. Or... does she?

Thursday, 5 May 2016

Review: The Last Days of Summer by Vanessa Ronan

Title: The Last Days of Summer
Author: Vanessa Ronan
Publisher: Penguin
Pages: 384
Genres: Thriller, Suspense
Source: ARC from the publisher

She can forgive. They can't forget.

After ten years in the Huntsville State Penitentiary, Jasper Curtis returns home to live with his sister and her two daughters. Lizzie does not know who she's letting into her home: the brother she grew up loving or the monster he became.

Teenage Katie distrusts this strange man in their home but eleven-year-old Joanne is just intrigued by her new uncle.

Jasper says he's all done with trouble, but in a forgotten prairie town that knows no forgiveness, it does not take long for trouble to arrive at their door.

Wednesday, 4 May 2016

Review: Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare

Title: Clockwork Prince
Series: The Infernal Devices #2
Author: Cassandra Clare
Publisher: Walker Books
Pages: 512
Genres: Young Adult, Paranormal, Fantasy

Clockwork Prince

In the magical underworld of Victorian London, Tessa Gray finds her heart drawn more and more to Jem, though her longing for Will, despite his dark moods, continues to unsettle her. But something is changing in Will - the wall he has built around himself is crumbling. Could finding the Magister free Will from his secrets and give Tessa the answers about who she is and what she was born to do? As their dangerous search for the for the truth leads the friends into peril, Tessa's heart is increasingly torn, especially when one of their own betrays them...

Wrap up Wednesday - April 2016








19 books this month, there was a lot of 5 star reads and all in all a great month.

Monday, 2 May 2016

Review: Persepolis 2: The Story of a Return by Marjane Satrapi

Title: Persepolis 2: The Story of a Return
Series: Persepolis #3-4
Written By: Marjane Satrapi
Translated by:Anjali Singh
Publisher: Pantheon Books
Pages: 187
Genres: Graphic Novel, Memoir

Persepolis 2

Finding that she misses her home more than she can stand, Marjane returns to Iran after graduation. Her difficult homecoming forces her to confront the changes both she and her country have undergone in her absence and her shame at what she perceives as her failure in Austria. Marjane allows her past to weigh heavily on her until she finds some like-minded friends, falls in love, and begins studying art at a university. However, the repression and state-sanctioned chauvinism eventually lead her to question whether she can have a future in Iran.