Tuesday 29 December 2015

"Greenwood" by Alexandra M. Griesinger

Book Blurb (from Goodreads):
We all have a destiny. We aren't born with our destiny, but it is found when our fate comes knocking on the door. My fate came to me as my curiosity found the darkest and deadliest secret in my town called 'Greenwood'. My discovery thrust me into a world where I immediately became a target to a group of people I knew nothing about nor did I understand why they wanted me dead. I am now faced watching my town slowly tearing itself apart as innocent people are dying all because of me. I also must face the truth that my family and friends are also suffering, because of the secret I found. I know that I must embrace my destiny in order save the town and I must become something that I didn't want to become, but I have to. My name is Lexi Connors and this is how I found my destiny.

My Review

***I received the eBook free as a review copy from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review***

I really don't know what to think of this book. However, there is certainly plenty of room for improvement. 
The story is basically about the discovery of an earth-shattering secret and the war between the rebels of Greenwood and the monsters. The main character is called Lexi Connors and she strongly believes that monsters are just fairy tales. I thought that the story idea was alright, not especially detailed but still alright. The world wasn't very developed in my opinion and after reading the entire book, I thought that in the repeated plot twists or villain revelations seemed like an attempt to make the plot more complicated and didn't really make me think: "Wow, that was really cleverly thought out!". As I said, the plot idea itself was a good idea that just needed some more development.
Next I'm going to talk about the characters. They all just seemed to be some kind of cardboard cut-out characters which I absolutely couldn't relate to. Lexi seemed very emotionless and at times way too emotional. There didn't seem to be any in-between for her and the others. I was really annoyed every time Lexi would start being emotional and tell everyone about her troubles and how they all immediately burst into tears. Lexi cried every single time she retold her story even though she has said it many times before and the events happened years before. I also just didn't like Lexi's personality by being so brash. Overall, I think that my favourite character was probably Zane because he was so sweet and innocent.
The writing style was also annoying at times. The grammar in this book was just so messed up. The verb tenses were being mixed up and so were certain word placements in a sentence. Then there were certain words missing and the spelling was also faulty at times. Another point I have, is that the repetition in the sentences was driving me crazy. Since this story is narrated from Lexi's point of view (first person) the author of course had to write stuff like: "I did ..." The problem was that almost every sentence started with "I". I thought that the a more extended vocabulary could have been used. Several nouns were also repeated in all consecutive sentences, which really annoyed me for some reason. Also, I just have to mention the last chapter of the book. I  didn't agree with the plot twist at all at the end, I think that there had to be more hints or at least some kind of evidence to explain the plot twist.
Overall, I thought that the idea of the book was alright but the way it was carried out made me read this book at a snail pace. The wording and the grammar annoyed me and I wasn't tempted to continue reading the book. However, once I continued reading there were some action-scenes that flowed nicely. I am reluctant to say this, but I am giving this book 1 out of 5 stars.

Saturday 26 December 2015

The Witch Hunter (the witch hunter #1) by Virginia Boecker

18190208Book Blurb (From Goodreads)
The magic and suspense of Graceling meet the political intrigue and unrest of Game of Thrones in this riveting fantasy debut.

Your greatest enemy isn't what you fight, but what you fear.

Elizabeth Grey is one of the king's best witch hunters, devoted to rooting out witchcraft and doling out justice. But when she's accused of being a witch herself, Elizabeth is arrested and sentenced to burn at the stake.

Salvation comes from a man she thought was her enemy. Nicholas Perevil, the most powerful and dangerous wizard in the kingdom, offers her a deal: he will save her from execution if she can break the deadly curse that's been laid upon him.

But Nicholas and his followers know nothing of Elizabeth's witch hunting past--if they find out, the stake will be the least of her worries. And as she's thrust into the magical world of witches, ghosts, pirates, and one all-too-handsome healer, Elizabeth is forced to redefine her ideas of right and wrong, of friends and enemies, and of love and hate.

Virginia Boecker weaves a riveting tale of magic, betrayal, and sacrifice in this unforgettable fantasy debut.

My Review:

I haven't read a good fantasy book in about three weeks, how did I survive? With a sprinkle of fairy dust, or in this case, some witch herbs.
I wasn't sure about this book in the first 2-3 chapters. It was in this time that I worried that it was going to be a book about some kind of love sick girl drinking away her problems in a bar. However, when I stuck to it and continued reading what I got was a good book witch many loveable characters. When Elizabeth meets Nicholas was when the real fun began. This is when you are thrown into the world of magic and get to see all of the amazing things it can do like make a real life replica of space on your living room celling (I don't know about you, but I would love to see that). We find out soon after that Nicolas has been cursed by a mystery person and apparently Elizabeth is the only one that can find a tablet to break it. If she doesn't it is 100% certain that Nicolas will die, so no pressure. Since Elizabeth has been trained to kill wizards, and Nicolas is the most wanted wizard in the country this goes against her morals but of coerce she does it because if she didn't there would be no book. She teams up with one pirate, one witch healer and Nicolas's apprentice. This leads to an exciting adventure with much needed good humour.
Elizabeth is a head strong stubborn character that has some trouble letting go of the ways that she has been taught for most of her life. She has a complicated background, involving her parent being killed by a magic plague which makes it severely difficult for her to trust anyone even remotely related to any sort of magic. We see these trust issues start to evaporate when she finds the good side of magic but it does take a while. She always sticks up for her friends, unless they betray her, then she might accidently through a dagger at the head. I'm not looking at anyone in particular.

All in all I give this book 4 out of 5 stars.

Tuesday 22 December 2015

First Chapter Tuesday Intros & Teaser Tuesday #3 - "Immurement" by Norma Hinkens

Every Tuesday Diane @ Bibliophile By the Sea hosts a weekly meme called First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros. Basically, this is when you share the first and maybe the second paragraph of the book you are currently reading or want to read soon.

Teaser Tuesdays is a meme hosted by MizB @ A Daily Rhythm, where I need to open a book to a random page and pick two spoiler-free sentences.

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

This is another book I am eagerly awaiting to read. (I have to finish another book before I start this one) I got it from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Chapter 1 
The sun’s always two fingerbreadths or higher above the Sawtooth peaks when the Sweepers come. Never at night. I swipe a strand of long hair from my eyes and throw a nervous glance at the horizon. The scrawny cow I’m guarding has all but given up flipping its tail at the droning swarms itching for a carcass. Time to leave it to its fate. I reach for my hunting pack, and freeze. A muffled crackling sound— too heavy for a rabbit, too light to be the cow keeling over. I hold my breath as I grab my gun and motion to my collie, Tucker, to drop beside me. My heart clatters like a wooden rollercoaster as I pan the charred hillside, my trigger finger tight on the safety. Dead trees poke up like broomsticks all around me. There’s nowhere to hide, but I’m troubled by the feeling I’m being watched. I skim the canyon again, my vision blurring in the blinding sun. A flicker of movement to my left. I suck in my breath.

Big Ed takes off his spectacles and rubs the lenses on the end of his fleece shirt. “They ain’t just oil and spare parts.”
I twist my lips. “Might as well be if they’re all like Mason. He’s cold as steel.”
Big Ed’s face clouds over. “He’s one of God’s creatures until I know different.”

 What do you think about it? Would you read it?

Monday 21 December 2015

Cover Reveal - Cogling by Jordan Elizabeth Mierek

A Steampunk Fairy Tale for Young Adults
who love a little Romance in their Adventures

When fifteen-year-old Edna Mather tears an expensive and unfamiliar pocket watch off her little brother's neck, he crumbles into a pile of cogs right before her eyes. Horrified, Edna flees for help, but encounters Ike, a thief who attempts to steal the watch before he realizes what it is: a device to power Coglings—clockwork changelings left in place of stolen children who have been forced to work in factories.

Desperate to rescue her brother, Edna sets off across the kingdom to the hags' swamp, with Ike in tow. There, they learn Coglings are also replacing nobility so the hags can stage a rebellion and rule over humanity. Edna and Ike must stop the revolt, but the populace believes hags are helpful godmothers and healers. No one wants to believe a lowly servant and a thief, especially when Ike has secrets that label them both as traitors. 

Together, Edna and Ike must make the kingdom trust them or stop the hags themselves, even if Ike is forced to embrace his dark heritage and Edna must surrender her family. 

COGLING has already gained advanced praise from NY Times Bestselling author Maria V. Snyder!
“This is a fun YA Steampunk novel. It's very different than many other Steampunk stories I've read. Basic plot is Edna's brother is kidnapped by hags and replaced with a "cogling" and she's on a mission to find and rescue her brother. The world is a Victorian-era with a strict class system for the humans and for those with magic. The woman with magic are called hags and the men with magic are orges and they're not nice and are planning to change the system. I really enjoyed learning about the world and the characters are well drawn and engaging.”
Check out COGLING on GoodReads and Curiosity Quills.  

Meet the author – Jordan Elizabeth Mierek lives in a dream world.  Sometimes she comes out to do her day job, but most of the time she is writing about her favorite people – her characters!  COGLING is her fourth book.  Her previous steampunk series, the Treasure Chronicles, include TREASURE DARKLY and BORN OF TREASURE.  Her debut novel, ESCAPE FROM WITCHWOOD HOLLOW, is a young adult fantasy-horror.  You can find her short stories in numerous anthologies.  Check out her website, JordanElizabethMierek.com, for contests and bonus stories!

Win a steampunk necklace!

Thursday 17 December 2015

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

Book Blurb (from Goodreads):
Streetwise George and his big, childlike friend Lennie are drifters, searching for work in the fields and valleys of California. They have nothing except the clothes on their back, and a hope that one day they’ll find a place of their own and live the American dream. But dreams come at a price. Gentle giant Lennie doesn’t know his own strength, and when they find work at a ranch he gets into trouble with the boss’s daughter-in-law. Trouble so bad that even his protector George may not be able to save him…

My Review 
This was a really intriguing book, which I didn't really expect to like.
We read this book for the English lesson and therefore read it as a class, part by part. At first, I was kind of skeptical of the book for various reasons, but mostly because it didn't really seem like the kind of book I would typically read. It is a historical-fiction book based in the time of the Great Depression in America. Two guys named George and Lennie are desperately trying to find a new job to fulfill their Dream of owning their own land.
The book started off very slow. The descriptions were elaborate and went in a lot of detail. That is normally fine with me; however, if there is too much description and the author doesn't actually get on with the story, I would already start to get bored. Further on, the dialogue in the first chapter of the book interested me because of the contrast between George and Lennie's characters and personality, which I will talk about later. Steinbeck makes sure not to reveal too much information in the first chapter of the book, so that the reader will want to read more and find out what actually happened at George's previous job in Weed and how Lennie got him into trouble.
As mentioned beforehand, there is a stark contrast between George and Lennie, both in appearance and personality. George is a rather small guy compared to Lennie. He is described in a way that lets the reader know that he is pretty smart. Then comes Lennie, who always follows George like an obedient dog. Lennie is a big and tall man, who doesn't know his own strength. He is simple-minded and not really bright and therefore follows whatever George says. There were a lot of other characters present in this story as well, like Curley's wife, Candy, Curley, Crooks, Carlson and others. (I just realized that their names all start with the letter C...)
I really liked the way the story flowed and how it made the reader want to know the rest of the story. Knowing that Lennie doesn't know his own strength is an obvious premonition of trouble for the reader and creates suspense because the reader would suspect something to occur. However, I thought that the accents and the way the characters talked was kind of awkward to get into when I first started the book, but I slowly got used to it and also understood what the people were saying. I kind of like the way how the story ended, because it was left open, but I felt that the ending was also a bit abrupt.
Overall, I give this book 4 out of 5 stars!

Tuesday 15 December 2015

First Chapter Tuesday Intros & Teaser Tuesday #2 - "The Magickal Birthday Treat" by Sheelag McGrath

Every Tuesday Diane @ Bibliophile By the Sea hosts a weekly meme called First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros. Basically, this is when you share the first and maybe the second paragraph of the book you are currently reading or want to read soon.

Teaser Tuesdays is a meme hosted by MizB @ A Daily Rhythm, where I need to open my currently-reading book to a random page and pick two spoiler-free sentences.

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

I got a  request from a publisher to read and review this book. It sounds like an adorable book and I can't wait to start reading! There is more information about it here
The Ghost in the Computer 
Ten years ago, on my sixth birthday, my father disappeared. No, he didn’t leave. Leaving would imply suitcases and empty drawers, and late birthday cards with ten-dollar bills stuffed inside. Leaving would imply he was unhappy with Mom and me, or that he found a new love elsewhere. None of that was true. He also did not die, because we would’ve heard about it. There was no car crash, no body, no police mingling about the scene of a brutal murder. It all happened very quietly. On my sixth birthday, my father took me to the park, one of my favorite places to go at that time. It was a lonely little park in the middle of nowhere, with a running trail and a misty green pond surrounded by pine trees. We were at the edge of the pond, feeding the ducks, when I heard the jingle of an ice cream truck in the parking lot over the hill. When I begged my dad to get me a Creamsicle, he laughed, handed me a few bills, and sent me after the truck. That was the last time I saw him.

“Gosh what’s that, Nonni? Sooo bright, brighter than the last!”
“That’s a supernova, they burn very brightly and then they’re gone, Jess.”
“Where do they go?”
“They explode and become debris,” explained Nonni.

What do you think about it? Would you leave it or keep on reading?

Tuesday 8 December 2015

First Chapter Tuesday Intros & Teaser Tuesday #1 - "Greenwood" by Alexandra M. Griesinger

Every Tuesday Diane @ Bibliophile By the Sea hosts a weekly meme called First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros. Basically, this is when you share the first and maybe the second paragraph of the book you are currently reading or want to read soon.

Teaser Tuesdays is a meme hosted by MizB at A Daily Rhythm, where I need to open my currently-reading book to a random page and pick two spoiler-free

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
This is the book I am currently reading and got from a publisher in exchange for an honest review. It was published on September 15th 2015.

One; The Discovery
I smiled as I wiped blood off my lips and I eyed Kelsey ‘Hit’ Keeper. She had light red hair that reached her man looking shoulders. Her dark brown eyes conspired against me as she raised her man fists. She is like six feet tall and her mouth was twitching as I kept smiling my cocky bloody smile. Her legs were shaking in anger and her yoga pants were stained with mud. Her white shirt was soaked after I’d pushed her into the small pond in my backyard. Her pot belly was sticking out and she was almost out of breath.
“You are not used to having this much excise are you?” I teased as I cocked my head to the side.

“My first fight with Kelsey and first encounter with Mr. Keeper. The beginning of my struggle and fight,” I whispered to myself again.
~pg, 227

What do you think about it? Would you leave it or keep on reading?

Saturday 5 December 2015

The Gathering (Darkness Rising #1) Kelley Armstrong

Book Blurb (From goodreads)
Sixteen-year-old Maya is just an ordinary teen in an ordinary town. Sure, she doesn't know much about her background - the only thing she really has to cling to is an odd paw-print birthmark on her hip - but she never really put much thought into who her parents were or how she ended up with her adopted parents in this tiny medical-research community on Vancouver Island.
Until now.

Strange things have been happening in this claustrophobic town - from the mountain lions that have been approaching Maya to her best friend's hidden talent for "feeling" out people and situations, to the sexy new bad boy who makes Maya feel...different. Combine that with a few unexplained deaths and a mystery involving Maya's biological parents and it's easy to suspect that this town might have more than its share of skeletons in its closet.

My Review:
This a spin of series from the darkest powers series, or it could be vice versa, I really don't know.
The plot of this was really slow moving. This is probably because it is such a complicated world that it takes up the better half of a book to even start to get a grasp on what it is. This book focused more on Maya's life before everything is going to go to hell. Which is good, because that means that when everything gets real crazy and every possible thing that can go wrong does, we can look back and know where it all started. But it still took a while to get to the main part of the plot and it doesn't really live up to what the blurb says happens in the book. A lot of the things were just glazed over briefly before moving to the next point. You would defiantly need to read the second book to find the action.
Maya is very outgoing in everything that she does and is also very street smart which helps her in more than one situation. She knows what is best for herself and others but she doesn't always act on those instincts. Throughout the book there is not much change in her character because as I said before, this book is the build up. The calm before the storm.
All in all I would give this book 4 out of 5 stars and I will be moving onto the second very soon. Hopefully there will be more to say then...

Thursday 3 December 2015

Book Rainbow Tag

And we're back with a book challenge! We were challenged by Megan and Cat over at Books of Fascination to do the Book Rainbow Challenge. Thank you for challenging us!

This is definitely something we don't usually do, but we are really exited to present to you... our beautiful Book Rainbows!

It is kind of funny to see the size differences between mine and Jessie's book list. Jessie has tons of books to choose from on her shelf and its pretty obvious that she went crazy with them and wasn't sparing any...  Meanwhile I tried to make as good a rainbow as I could with my meager book collection, but lo and behold! Here they are!!!

For anyone who wants to do this tag as well and the bloggers we have tagged, here are the rules:

1. The books you use for creating the rainbow must be your own!
2. If the books you choose are hardcover, you can use it with or without the cover slip on.
3. Colors can be a wide variety-be creative! Just keep the color order of the rainbow in mind!
4. There isn't a specific number of books you can have. Go nuts!
5. Display your book rainbow proudly on the post.
6. Tag whomever! Spread the love! 
Avalon (Avalon #1) by Mindee Arnett (black)
The 5th Wave (The 5th Wave #1) by Rick Yancey (black)
The Infinite Sea (The 5th Wave #2) by Rick Yancey (black)
The Darkest Minds (The Darkest Minds #1) by Alexandra Bracken  (grey)
Asylum (Asylum #1) by Madeleine Roux (Grey)
Witch Hunter (Witch Hunter #1) by Virginia Boecker  (grey)
Override (Glitch #2) by Heather Anastasiu  (red)
The Wager by Donna Jo Napoli (red)
Half Bad (The Half Bad Trilogy) by Sally Green (red)
Days of Blood and Starlight (Daughter of Smoke and Bone #2) by Laini Taylor (Red)
Messenger of Fear (Messenger of Fear #1) by Micheal Grant (Red)
Endgame (Endgame #1) by James Fray (Gold)
Gold (Bandia #2) by Talia Vance (Yellow/Orange)
Shutdown (Glitch #3) by Heather Anastasiu (Yellow/Brown)
Sea of Monsters (Percy Jackson and the Olympions #2) by Rick Riordan (Green)
The Sin Eater's Daughter (The Sin Eater's Daughter #1) by Melinda Salisbury (Green)
Matched (Matched #1) by Ally Condie (Green)
Ignite Me (Shatter me #3) by Tahereh Mafi (Blue/Green)
Shatter Me (Shatter Me #1) by Tahereh Mafi (Blue/Grey)
Unravel Me (Shatter Me #2) by Tahereh Mafi (Blue/Gray)
The Gathering (Darkness Rising) by Kelly Armstrong (Blue)
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman (Blue)
The Fault In Our Stars by John Green (Blue)
Jake and Lily by Jerry Spinelli (Turquoise)
How to Love by Katie Cotugno (Turquoise)
Rules of Summer (Rules of Summer #1) by Joanna Philbin (Pink)
The Ruby Circle (Bloodlines #6) by Richelle Mead (Pink/Purple)
Glitch (Glitch #1) by Heather Anastasiu (Pink/purple)
Mind Games (Mind Games #1) by Kiersten White (Purple)
Sliver (Bandia #1) by Talia Vance (Purple)
Sleepless (Red Eye) by Lou Morgan (Purple)
No One Else Can Have You by Kathleen Hale (Purple)

 The Whispering Skull (Lockwood & Co #2) by Jonathan Stroud (black-red)
Kristallschwert (Chroniken der Dunkelheit #2) by A. J. Lake (red)
I Am Number Four (I Am Number Four #1) by Pittacus Lore (red-orange)
The Scorch Trials (The Maze Runner #2) by James Dashner (orange)
Starcrossed (Starcrossed #1) by Josephine Angelini (orange-yellow)
The Maze Runner (The Maze Runner #1) by James Dashner (yellow)
Every Day (Every Day #1) by David Levithan (yellow)
Avalon: Web of Magic by Rachel Roberts (green)
Antigoddess (Goddess War #1) by Kendare Blake (blue)
Eisdrache (Chroniken der Dunkelheit #1) by A. J. Lake (blue)
The Death Cure (The Maze Runner #3) by James Dashner (blue)
The Pharaoh's Cat by Maria Luisa Lang (purple)
Beautiful Creatures (Caster Chronicles #1) by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl (black)

- Ashley @ What's Your Story?
-Denise @ The Bibliolater
-The Undomestic Fangirl @ The Bookwhore Diaries

Those are the bloggers we challenged to do the Book Rainbow Tag. But remember, anyone is free to do this tag and show off their lovely rainbows!