Friday, 24 March 2017

BOOK REVIEW: Red Sister

Title: Red Sister
Author: Mark Lawrence
Published by: Harper Voyager
Publication date: 6th April 2017
Format: Kindle
Source: Netgalley ARC
"A book is as dangerous as any journey you might take. The person who closes the back cover may not be the same one that opened the front one."
Oh my gosh guys!
This book is immense. 

It has danger and fighting and adventure and magic and mystery and intrigue and swords and poisons and ice and powers and friendship and bravery and nuns. 

What more could you ask for?!

Nothing. 
You could ask for nothing more. 

The story follows Nona as she is given away by her mother and eventually ends up at the Sweet Mercy convent training to become a Red Sister. 
But Red Sisters aren't your average type of nun. 
Oh no!

While at Sweet Mercy Nona and her friends learn how to fight with fist, blade, arrow and spear. 
They learn about the world and all its mysteries. 
They learn how to brew poisons and create the antidotes all while trying to avoid being sneakily poisoned themselves by their teacher. 
They learn how to connect to the Ancestor and in turn learn patience, clarity and serenity. 
They learn how to weave shadows and pull the threads that connect all things. 
And they learn about The Path. 

I want to become a Red Sister. 
Please?!

Nona and her friends face many trials and dangers throughout this story and it never once got boring. 
The whole book sped along in one big heap of awesome!
The story and world were completely fascinating; I was hooked from the very first page. 

All of the characters we meet are so varied and interesting. 
Nona herself is incredibly likeable and easy to empathise with. She's brave, fierce, wild, and a true friend. Yet she's also scared, untrusting, secretive and violent. 
I loved her. 
In this story we have fierce friends, kindly teachers, terrifying enemies, sneaky liars and everything in between. 

You'll find no catty girl-girl hate here. Which is so refreshing
We see a flicker of some towards the start, but both parties quickly realise they're being stupid and decide to be friends instead.
YAS! Thank you Mark Lawrence!
There are also no signs of any heterosexual relationships. Though there are plenty of lesbian ones (a convent full of lonely girls? Yes, this would definitely be the case) and also some hints that our main character Nona may also be gay. Which I desperately hope to be the case! 

The world we are thrown into felt so real and fleshed out. 
From the cities and convent buildings where lessons took place, to the freezing wilds of the Corridor and dark underground tunnels. It was written amazingly well and now my life's goal is to gain admittance to the Sweet Mercy convent. 
I want to learn from the Sisters, have warm steamy baths, try to walk the whole of the blade path, visit the library with Sister Kettle, and go out on a ranging in the icy winds. 
Why is this world not real?!
"They're my babies. My old leathery babies. And I have a very unpleasant poison from Sister Apple for anyone who so much as folds a page." - Sister Kettle
I love my old leathery babies too Sister Kettle. 
And my new papery babies as well. 
I would totally poison anyone who harmed my books!
Sister Kettle knows what's up!

I am desperate to dive back into this world again as soon as possible. 
The sequel can't come soon enough!
"Your death has not been waiting for your arrival at the appointed hour: it has, for all the years of your life, been racing towards you with the fierce velocity of time's arrow. It cannot be evaded, it cannot be bargained with, deflected or placated. All that is given to you is the choice: meet it with open eyes and peace in your heart, go gentle to your reward. Or burn bright, take up arms, and fight the bitch."

Monday, 20 March 2017

A-Z Challenge 2017


Today is the day that I announce that I shall be taking part in the 2017 A-Z Challenge!


I took part back in 2013 and thought it would be fun to give it another try.
And as a sneaky way to force myself to blog more

If you haven't heard about this then head on over to here to have a little look at what its all about, and maybe you can take part too! 
Its still not too late to join!

Today is the BIG REVEAL, where people taking part in the challenge can let everyone know what theme they will be using for their posts.

 
For my A-Z this year I shall be writing about Folklore & Fairytales

Traditional stories, fables and myths from all over the world!
Maybe with a splashing of mythical creatures thrown in too if you're lucky! 

I want to focus on the less well known tales, or the older telling with more violence, evil and gore! 
Because we all know they're much more interesting!

I'm hoping that we'll learn some interesting and obscure things along the way and I hope that you're willing to join me on this alphabet adventure!

I'll also be carrying on with my book review throughout April as well. Because I definitely won't stop reading, so be prepared for LOTS of blog content this month!

If anyone here is also doing the A-Z Challenge then please leave me a comment and I'll pop on over to take a look at your offerings too :)

Friday, 17 March 2017

BOOK REVIEW: More of Me

Title: More of Me
Author: Kathryn Evans
Published by: Amulet Books
Publication date: 13th June 2017
Format: Kindle
Source: Netgalley ARC

"I have grown in strength inside her. Filled her cells with mine until we must split apart. It's not my choice - that's how it's always been for us."
This is the tale of Teva. 
A girl who splits into two versions of herself every year. 
A girl who lives in a house with all of her previous selves who are never able to age. 
A girl who has chosen to fight to try to keep her life as her own. 

This book was quite an unexpected gem for me. 
I loved the idea of it but had no idea that I would enjoy it quite as much as I did. 

The story is written so well that I struggled to put it down. 
It kept me hooked the whole way through. 
NEEDED to know what was happening!

The author keeps us guessing about the nature of Teva's condition. 
Is it real?
Why does it happen?
Is she crazy?
Can it be stopped?
Who can she trust?
I had so many different theories about what was going on while I read this book. It kept throwing new things at me and making me reevaluate my ideas constantly. 

It was tense and mysterious and confusing and I loved it!

The characters were great and well written. 
All of the different Tevas were distinctly different and interesting. I really enjoyed reading about how their relationships worked and how they all interacted with each other. 
The current Teva was easy to like and sympathise with. 
I loved the fierce friendship between Teva and Maddy. 
Though I do wish there was less emphasis on boys/relationships being the thing that was holding Teva together and getting her through. 

I also enjoyed the interesting moral dilemmas that the current Teva faced once she had split away from 'Fifteen'. 
Was she stealing Fifteens life?
Was it her own life anyway?
Was Ollie Teva's boyfriend or Fifteen's?
Was she the same person?
Was it right that her mum locked all the previous Teva's away and didn't let them live their lives?
Should she bother working towards a future she would never be able to experience? 

I found this to be a really original and gripping story. 
Definitely worth a read!



Wednesday, 15 March 2017

BOOK REVIEW: The Black Witch

Title: The Black Witch
Author: Laurie Forest
Published by: Harlequin Teen
Publication date: 2nd May 2017
Format: Kindle
Source: Netgalley ARC


I just can't with this book. 
I can't. 

I had to stop at 45%. I just couldn't force myself to carry on any further. 
Even getting this far was a struggle. 

This book is sooo problematic. 

I'm aware the author is probably setting it up so that our oh-so-special MC can grow and change and become a better person and probably change the whole bloody world along the way. 
But no. 

It was racist and sexist and just awful. 

Was the author trying to make Lukas Grey seem attractive to the reader?
Because he really just comes across as a privileged, entitled, douche bag. 

When Elloren first meets him he hurries her away to a dark corridor within the first 5 minutes because she's never been kissed and he needs to rectify this right away apparently. 
No. 

When Elloren asks him to show her some magic what does he do?
Make some magic flowers for her?
Put on a beautiful, impressive display?
No. 
He wraps her up in dark tendrils of magic and pulls her to him forcibly. 
Gross. 

And then later after Elloren has just said she needs to stay away from him and is LITERALLY stepping backwards away from him, he 'binds' her with a spell to pull her closer to him and starts getting all kissy-kissy with her neck and chuckling. 
No, no, no!
She just said no to you dude!
Not okay!

All of the females were bitchy and catty and hating on each other. 

One of the main tensions in the book is Elloren and a nasty, bitchy girl fighting over the terrible Lukas Grey. 

Certain races were slaves, sold him cages, described as 'deranged hordes' and 'half-breeds'. 
Our charming Lukas threatens their families (including a 5 year old child!) because they hurt poor, precious Elloren. 

What with all the racism, classism, arranged marriages, and such I couldn't give this book anymore of my time. 

Not to mention it's incredibly dull and slow. 
Nothing seemed to happen. 
And all that nothing happened at an incredibly slow pace. 
I just didn't care about any of it other than how offensive it is. 

I'm totally aware that Elloren will probably realise the error of her ways at some point in the story. 
But at 45% in I feel like she should already be making strides towards this?
Not still hating everyone of a different race to her and judging other girls for being 'ugly'. 
Come on. 

No thank you.



Monday, 13 March 2017

My top 5 dystopian novels.


I love a good bit of dystopia!
Who doesn't?
(Well, probably loads of people don't, but shhh!)

Here are my top 5 picks!










Have you read any of these? 
If so, what did you think? 
If not, then WHY NOT??? Go read them right now!!! RUN!
...and then let me know what you think of them :)

What's your favourite dystopian novel?