Monday, December 21, 2009

"Fallen" by Lauren Kate [5]


Instant. Intense. Weirdly familiar...
The moment Luce looks at Daniel
she knows she has never felt like this before.
Except she can't shake the feeling that she
has... and with him - a boy she doesn't
remember ever setting eyes on.
Will her attempt to find out why enlighten her
- or destroy her?

Fallen is a thrilling story about forbidden love...

A wonderful, exciting and fascinating story of a love that just cannot be.

Luce has been sent to the Sword & Cross school... a school where you send troubled teens...
and Luce has certainly had her fair share. Since the age of eight Luce has been able to see these shadows... and they scare her...but nobody else can see them... therefore she must be crazy.
On her first day at school Luce is drawn to Daniel... a boy that is totally hot...but she has never met him before, but there is a connection.

Daniel is drawn to Luce but fights the feelings...he knows what will happen if he gets too close.
From the moment you pick up the book you are drawn into the world of Luce and Daniel and you want so much for the starcross lovers to find each other and share the love that binds them.

This book keeps you reading until as the author doesn't give much away until almost the end.
A book that the older teens will just love.

The only down side to this book is that I now have to wait until September 2010 for the second in the series...."Torment"
{well named}

A great stocking filler.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The Christmas Clock by Kat Martin [4 1/2]

Teddy Winters was eight years old that christmas, too young to understand all the undercurrents swirling around him in the tiny Michigan town of Dreyerville.
He wasn't able to value that christmas for the miracle it truly was.
Teddy only knew he wanted to buy the beautiful Victorian clock in the window of Tremont's Antiques as a gift for his grandmother, Lottie Sparks, a woman desperate to find him a home before her rapidly progressing Alzheimer's left him an orphan.

Teddy didn't know that in trying to buy the clock he would meet Sylvia Winters and Joe Dixon, a couple, once in love, desperate to overcome the past. He didn't know he would form a friendship with his neighbors, Floyd and Doris Culver, two people struggling to revive their long-dead marriage.

He didn't know that these people would fill his Christmas with magic and hope; that the love of his friends would change his world, and that he would forever change theirs.

Christmas is my favourite time of the year and while here in Australia it is usual hot I love to read stories set in the northern hemisphere where there is plenty of snow...

This is a beautiful story about forgiveness, love, hope, joy and the miracles that can happen in this wonderful time of year.

Teddy is a young boy who lives with his grandmother and wants to do some special for Christmas for her. He finds a beautiful clock in one of the local shops and works hard all summer to save the money.

Lottie Sparks has looked after her grandson since his mother died, but it is getting harder each day as her Alzheimer's is getting worse...she is worried what will happen to Teddy when she isn't able to look after him anymore.

Then there is Joe Dixon and Sylvia Winters who once were engaged to be married but never happened... the spark between them is still there but can old wounds be healed.

This is a very quick read with only 145 pg, but a beautiful story that will leave you believing in the miracles of Christmas.

A wonderful gift to give this Christmas.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

"Immortal" by Gillian Shields [4]

Wyldcliffe Abbey School for Young Ladies, housed in a Gothic mansion on the bleak northern moors, is elite, expensive, and unwelcoming. When Evie Johnson is torn away from her home by the sea to become the newest scholarship student, she is more isolated than she could have dreamed. Strict teachers, snobbish students, and the oppressive atmosphere of Wyldcliffe leave Evie drowning in loneiness.

Evie's only lifeline is Sebastian, a rebelious, mocking, dangerously attractive young man she meets by chance. As Evie's feelings for Sebastian grow with each secret meeting, she starts to fear that he is hiding something about his past. And she is haunted by glimpses of a strange, ghostly girl -
a girl who is so eerily like Evie, she could be a sister. Evie is slowly drawn into a tangled web of past and present that she cannot control.

This book has the most beautiful cover which is what drew me too it.

A really wonderful has suspense, romance and mysticism that will dazzle the reader and leaving you wanting more... it is what happens, there will have to be a second novel.

The two main characters are strong in their stories. Sebastian is the brooding handsome young man with a past that haunts him. Evie is a young girl who is trying to come too terms with the losses in her life and finds herself in a boarding school which is really lonely.

On a chance meeting the two find themselves drawn too each other and as they get to know one another fall in love. Fate will play a big roll in their lives and astounding secrets will be revealed and the two lovers will make life changing decisions.

A really enjoyable first novel, looking forward to how it finishes.

I rate this book 4 stars.

"Fairy Tale" by Cyn Balog [3]

Morgan Sparks and Cam Browne are a match made in heaven. They've been best friends since birth, they tell each other everything, and oh yeah - they're totally hot for each other.

But a week before their joint sixteen bash, everything changes. Cam's awkward cousin Pip comes to stay, and cam starts acting distant. Morgan is stunned when her formerly perfect boyfriend seems to be drifting away.

When Morgan demands answers, she's shocked to discover the reason for Cam's distance.

It isn't another girl - it's another world.

Pip claims that Cam is a fairy. No, seriously. A fairy. And now his people want Cam to return to their world and take his rightful place as Fairy King.

I have been waiting a while to read this book and found it to be a little disappointing.

This is definitely a book for the 13-15 yr old. I've read a few books now to do with faeries and found the story on each is kind of similar...which is fine, but I just thought this one was a little weak compared to some of the others I've read.

The character of Morgan was a little whiny and I got feed up with it all being about her. Cam to me also came across as a little weak too.

Look the younger ones will probably enjoy it, but for adults you can find better out there.

I rate this book 3 stars.

Monday, November 23, 2009

"A Rose in Winter" by Kathleen E. Woodiwiss [5]

The enchantinng, raven-haired daughter of the village mayor, Erienne Flemming is the fairest bloom in her English village. And of all who desire her, she would have only one: the dashing and witty young Yankee, Christopher Seton. But a marriage for love is not to be, as Erienne is auctioned off to the highest bidder to help pay off her irresponsible father's debts. And in the end, it is the enigmatic Lord Saxton who purchases her hand - a tragic and secretive noble who hides his scars behind mask and clock, and who only appears to her after nightfall.

Resigned to a solitary life in cold and rambling Saxton Hall, Erienne slowly learns the true nature of the stranger she calls "husband." A gentle and adoring soul, he treats his new bride with warmth and abiding tenderness. But though she valiantly longs to remain true to her elusive, mysterious spouse, Erienne feels herself irresistibly drawn to Christopher Seton's passion, his fire, and his intrigues. And soon she will have to make a devastating choice: between her duty and her heart...

A stirring and unforgettable tale of love and duty.

This is the first time I have read any books from this author and she is definitely worth the read in this Genre. It is a long novel with 567pg, but you don't realize how quickly you get through it as you don't want to put it down. Her characters are strong and determined women who for one reason or another find themselves in peril and then are rescued by the dashing and handsome rakes who falls in love with them.

This novel is set in the north of England in 1792.

Erienne Flemming is the beautiful young beauty of her village and she has been struggling to keep her life and home together as her father the village Mayor, is a drunk and a gambler, who cares only for himself. He decides to sell Erienne to pay off his debts. While Erienne has met the rogue Christopher Seton and is drawn to him, it is the noble Lord Saxton that she is sold too.
As she gets too know both of these gentlemen she is torn in too, as her heart belongs too one, but she has a duty to the other.

What is a girl to on and find out!

Great fluff read if you like this Genre.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

"Splendor" by Anna Godbersen [5]

New York City 1900.

While the once revered Holland family recovers from scandal, the spirited Miss Diana Holland is seeking adventure abroad. But then a surprising clue about her father's death is revealed and everything is thrown into question.

Meanwhile, the delectable Henry Schoonmaker has also left the city and bravely gone to war while his wife relishes her role as Manhattan royalty - until a real prince pays a visit and turns her fickle head.
As New York's most dazzling stars chase dreams, cling to promises and tempt fate, society wonders: at exactly what price does a life of splendor come?

I've been hanging out for this fourth book and it hasn't disappointed.

As I've said before, it is Gossip Girl set in the nineteenth century...aheady mix of period parties, glitz and gossip. I terrific read if you like period style books.

The characters are all still very interesting and the author has put a few twists in the plot so the ending that you imagined it's quite that.

I don't want to give any of the story I'll just say a great read.

Books in the series.
1.The Luxe
2. Rumours
3. Envy
4. Splendor.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Twenty's Girl by Sophie Kinsella - Discussion Questions

1. How do Sadie and Lara differ? What does Sadie want Lara to do with her life?

2. What do the two eventually come to have in common?

3. Both Sadie and Lara want to find the missing necklace, but both have different motives for wanting to find it. What are they?

4. Twenties Girl has been described as a coming-of-age story in which a young protagonist learns something that enables her to cross over into the adult world, more mature and wise than before. What does Lara learn by the end of the novel?

5. How would you describe the style: lyrical, pompous, complex and wordy, easy and straightforward, humorous, or offensive?

6. Are the characters convincing? Do they come alive for you? How would you describe them — as sympathetic, likeable, thoughtful, intelligent, innocent, naive, strong or weak? Something else?

7. Do you identify with any characters? Are you able to look at events in the book through their eyes — even if you don’t like or approve of them?

8. Do any characters change or grow by the end of the story? Do they come to view the world and their relationship to it differently?

9. Does the plot hold your interest? Does it keep you turning pages? Does it move briskly or unfold slowly?

10. Were you surprised by the ending? Was information withheld till the end? Were there cliff-hangers at the end of chapters? Did that irritate you or make you want to read on?

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

"A Kiss in Time" by Alex Flinn [4]

"What is that?" She points to the numbers on the shirt.

"The year. Old Navy puts the year on all their flag T-shirts. It's sort of a racket, I guess -
you have to buy a new one every year."


She looks sort of sick. Her face is suddenly almost the same color green as her eyes. She begins to shake. "Oh, my...oh, no." She crumbles back onto the floor, as she was when I first saw her.
"It cannot be true. It cannot."

I kneel beside her. "What's the matter now? I thought you were fine."
She looks at me, then starts screaming. "Fine? Fine? I have been asleep nearly three hundred years!"

Another wonderfully told fairy tale set in the modern world. This time it is my favourite fairy tale of Sleeping Beauty.

Princess Talia has been told all her life she is not to touch a spindle. She has been pampered and spoilt all her life. On her 16th birthday she defies her parents and does the unthinkable and pricks her finger on a spindle. Talia falls under the spell and sleeps along with her whole kingdom.

Jack is a teenager who feels that life is just passing him by...he has an annoying little sister and parents who just don't listen. Looking for a little adventure he escapes his tour group in Europe and stumbles upon a sleeping town and a beautiful girl who is asleep. What is a boy too do...I just had to kiss her.

Talia fell under the spell.
Jack broke the curse.
Now the fun begins...

A really great teen read, lots of funny incidents that kids will relate too.Age group recommended would be 13-15 years. A really great twist on the classic fairy tale.

I rate this book 4 stars.

Friday, November 13, 2009

"Before the Season Ends" by Linore Rose Burkard [4]

Romantic woes at home send Ariana Forsythe to her wealthy Aunt Bentley's townhouse in fashionable Mayfair, London. Under her aunt's calculating eye, Ariana is thrust into high society and worse intrigue than that which prompted her flight from home. A scandalous rumour involving her with London's current darling rogue, the taciturn, though handsome. Mr Phillip Mornay, is launched on society in a malicious act of meanness that changes Ariana's life forever. Her faith, her future, and her heart are all at stake as she strives to clear her name and resist the man who does not share her faith.

What a surprising novel.

Regency romance are my all time favourite to read, but I haven't come across one with a spiritual background. Very well written and for those that like this period but find most authors have a little erotic romance in them...this had none. Great book too give your daughters if you like this style.

The basic story of this novel is about too people who meet and fall in love but come from different spiritual backgrounds and how they can keep their convictions while still loving each other.

This book will touch your heart and stay in your thoughts long after you've read it.
The sequel to this novel is...

"The House in Grosvenor Square"

A truly beautiful read.

"Fire" by Kristian Cashore [5]

Fire's exceptional beauty gives her influence and power. People who are susceptible to it will do anything for her attention, and for her affection. If she wished, they would abuse their power, crush nations and even destroy their own kingdoms to please her.

But beauty is only skin deep, and beneath it Fire has a human appreciation of right and wrong. Aware of her ability to influence others, and afraid of it, she lives in a corner of the world away from people - not only to protect them but also to protect herself from their attention, their distrust, and even their hatred.
Yet Fire is not the only danger to the Dells. If she wants to protect her home, if she wants a chance to undo the wrongs of the past, she must face her fears, her abilities, and a royal court full of powerful people with reason to distrust her.

Beauty is a weapon - and Fire is going to use it.

WOW....this second novel to the "Gracelling" series is brilliant.

I have so been waiting for this next installment and I was not disappointed.

It starts off in the same kingdom as the first novel, but then moves through the mountains and into the kingdom called the Dells. I am assuming it is set around the same time, but it doesn't really matter.

In the kingdom of the Dells they don't have people who are gifted with graces....
instead they have monsters... larger creatures of animals, birds, insects, fish etc.
Also people... Fire's father was a monster, which makes Fire half human, half monster.
This is where she gets her special abilities.

I don't want to give away any of the story, but I will say she is a sensitive girl who struggles with her abilities, she struggles with her relationship with her father and the people who have come to look upon her as family.This is a story of how she overcomes her fears and embraces her gifts.

Brilliantly written, I couldn't put it down until I knew how it finished.

This second novel is just as good as the first....loved it.

Enjoyed all the characters and reading of a new dangerous world.

I rate this book 5 stars.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

"Betraying Season" by Marissa Doyle [4 1/2]

Penelope Leland has come to Ireland to study magic and prove to herself
that she is as good a witch as her twin sister, Persy.

But when the dashing Niall Keating begins to court her, Pen can't help
being distracted from her studies.
Little does pen know Niall is acting upon orders from his sorceress mother.

And although it starts as a sham, Niall actually falls deeply in love with Pen,
and she with him. Even if he halts his mother's evil plan, will Pen be able to forgive him
for trying to seduce her into a plot? And what of Pen's magic, which seems to be
increasingly powerful?

This is a wonderful second companion to the first novel, 'Bewitching Season'.

Pen has always thought she wasn't as good with magic as her sister Persy is, but she never really did try to concentrate when they were learning. Now that Persy is married she has come with her trust friend Ally who has married, to Ireland. Here Pen meets Lady Keating and her son Niall and she becomes good friend with them. Pen falls in love with Niall and Lady Keating is like a mother too her. Without spoiling the plot things happen and Pen has to use her magical abilities to her save her and the man she loves.

Really well written and flows along well from the previous novel. Delightful to read.

Beautiful novels to introduce to young girls who want a little romance in a novel as well as some adventure and a little bit of magic thrown in. Age group 13 to 15 year old.

I rate this book 4 1/2 stars.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

"Storm Glass" by Maria V. Snyder [4]

As a glassmaker and a magician-in-training, Opal Cowan understands trials by fire.
Now it's time to test her mettle. Someone has sabotaged the Stormdancer clan's glass orbs,
killing their most powerful magicians. The Stormdancers - particularly the mysterious and mercurial Kade - require Opal's unique talents to prevent it happening again. But when the mission goes awry, Opal must tap into a new kind of magic as stunningly potent as it is frightening. And the further she delves into the intrigue behind the glass and magic, the more distorted things appear. With lives hanging in the balance - including her own - Opal must control powers she hasn't known she possessed...powers that might lead to disaster beyond anything she's ever known.

This book is a spin off from the 'Poison Study' series.

While I enjoyed reading this book, I did find that I seemed to be reading the same type of story again, so I did find it a little monotonous. The main characters are new but we were introduced to Opal from the last series. Her character seems to be a tortured soul in the sense she feels responsible for the death of her sister and she doesn't feel she deserves to be at the magic school.
Opal soon discovers that she has more magical abilities than she realizes and her life is in danger because of it.

Well written...full of adventure... lots of magic...and a little romance thrown in.

A good teen read, especially if you enjoyed the first series.

I rate this book 4 stars.

Monday, November 2, 2009

"Bed of Roses" by Nora Roberts [5]

Since she was a little girl, Emmaline Grant has always loved romance. So it's really no surprise that she has found her calling as a wedding florist, working with her childhood friends Mackensie, Parker and Laurel. She couldn't ask for a better job.

And on the surface, Emma's love life seems to be thriving. Slim and sultry, she brings colour into every room she enters, just like the arrangements she creates. But while men swarm around her, she still hasn't found Mr Right - and the last place she's looking is under her nose.

But that's just where Jack Cooke is. he's been best friends with Parker's brother for years, which makes him practically family. Now the architect has begun to admit to himself that his feelings for Emma have developed into much more than friendship, and when Emma returns his passion - kiss for blistering kiss - things start to get complicated.

Second book in the Bride Quartet series....

I am absolutely loving this series and it totally sucks that I have to wait between books...
Emma is the romantic out of the four girls and she has always dreamed of meeting and falling in love with a man just like her mother did with her father.

Emma and Jack have known each other for quite a few years and it's always been a brother/sister type relationship....
that is until Jack kisses her, and everything changes...

While Emma yearns for the life-long love affair, Jack has never been one for commitment!

Will these two trust one another enough to find common ground?

Each of these girls has a beautifully told story about how they find their true love and happiness.

These books are just wonderful...
I love the friendship between each of the girls...
I love the way that they protect each other...
treasure they're unique gifts and talents they bring into their business.

The men in these books are handsome and hard working and willing to cherish the women they fall in love with...

Turning into my favourite series very quickly...

Definitely 5 stars.

Books in Series.
1. Vision in White
2. Bed of Roses.
3. Savour the Moment. [out May 2010]

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Fragile Eternity by Melissa Marr (41/2)

“Seth never expected he would want to settle down with anyone—but that was before Aislinn. She is everything he'd ever dreamed of, and he wants to be with her forever. Forever takes on new meaning, though, when your girlfriend is an immortal faery queen.

Aislinn never expected to rule the very creatures who'd always terrified her—but that was before Keenan. He stole her mortality to make her a monarch, and now she faces challenges and enticements beyond any she'd ever imagined.

In Melissa Marr's third mesmerizing tale of Faerie, Seth and Aislinn struggle to stay true to themselves and each other in a milieu of shadowy rules and shifting allegiances, where old friends become new enemies and one wrong move could plunge the Earth into chaos.”

The third book in the series and it has to be one of my favourites !!!!!!!! ......... Melissa definitely has to write a fourth book ...... Please ........ You cannot keep us hanging to find out what happens next !!!!!!

The story line continues with Keenan, Aislinn and Seth the love Triangle ........ Now that Aislinn is Faerie and no longer mortal will her relationship with Seth still continue ...... Or will her strong pull toward her King Keenan draw her into his arms ......... Seth has made some powerful allies in the faeirie kingdom considering he is mortal but will it be enough to hold onto Aislinn ......

Love it ...... New characters being introduced and your old faithful characters that you will love ... This is such an easy book to read my only complaint is that it ended and I wanted more !!!! :( .....

A great book on relationships and trying to juggle them to make everyone happy ....... If you love your fantasy and Faeries you will eat this book up !!!!!!!

I rate this book 41/2 ****

Books in order of series

Wicked Lovely

Ink Exchange

Fragile Eternity

P.S Did I mention that I love the covers to this series ......... I would buy them just on that alone :) ...

Ink Exchange by Melissa Marr (4)

"Unbeknownst to mortals, a power struggle is unfolding in a world of shadows and danger. After centuries of stability, the balance between the Faerie Courts has altered, and Irial, ruler of the Dark Court, is battling to hold his rebellious and newly-vulnerable fey together. If he fails, bloodshed and brutality will follow.

17-year-old Leslie knows nothing of faeries or their intrigues. When she is attracted to an eerily beautiful tattoo of eyes and wings, all she knows is that she has to have it, convinced it is a tangible symbol of changes she desperately craves for her own life.

The tattoo does bring changes—not the kind that Leslie had dreamed of, but sinister, compelling changes that are more than symbolic. Those changes will bind Leslie and Irial together, drawing Leslie deeper and deeper into the faerie world, unable to resist its allures, and helpless to withstand its perils.

Melissa Marr continues her tales of Faerie in a dark, ravishing story of temptation and consequences, and of heroism when least expected. "

Even though this is the second book in the series it follows the story of Leslie a moral who finds herself strangely drawn to Irial one of the Faerie Kings ..... I would advise to read this book 2nd as it does continue the story with Aislinn and Keenan but only in tiny snippets ....

Melissa has a great way of writing the male characters especially when one minute you really love them and then the next you dislike them .... It is a love/hate relationship .... Brilliant ......

Leslie the main character is getting drawn into a world that no one else can see ...... Those closest to her try to protect her but will not telling her about the other world do her more harm than good? ........

There is abit more violence and graphic descriptions in this book than in the first but you are talking about the Dark Faerie King here not a nice grant your wishes faerie .......

I felt it wasn't as good as the first book but still a really good read .....

I rate this book 4 ****

Books in the series in order

Wicked Lovely

Ink Exchange

Fragile Eternity

Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr (41/2)

Rule #3: Don’t stare at invisible faeries. Aiislinn has always seen faeries. Powerful and dangerous, they walk hidden in the mortal world. Aislinn fears their cruelty—especially if they learn of her Sight—and wishes she were as blind to their presence as other teens.

Rule #2: Don’t speak to invisible faeries. Now faeries are stalking her. One of them, Keenan, who is equal parts terrifying and alluring, is trying to talk to her, asking questions Aislinn is afraid to answer.

Rule #1: Don’t ever attract their attention. But it’s too late. Keenan is the Summer King who has sought his queen for nine centuries. Without her, summer itself will perish. He is determined that Aislinn will become the Summer Queen at any cost—regardless of her plans or desires.

Suddenly none of the rules that have kept Aislinn safe are working anymore, and everything is on the line: her freedom; her best friend, Seth; her life; everything. Faery intrigue, mortal love, and the clash of ancient rules and modern expectations swirl together in this 21st century faery tale.

The first installment of a new series and I loved it ........ Rumours are that it is getting made into a movie as well which is exciting ......

Well seems to be the fad at the moment with the number of Faery books that are floating around at the moment .... And I have to say that this one would be right up there ... I love the characters and especially love Keenan ..... He is one of those characters that you love one moment and dislike the next ........

The story is great with Aislinn suddenly finding herself with some unwanted Royal Faery attention !!!!!!! ......... Will she be able to stay mortal to stay with Seth or will the devilishly handsome Keenan win her over !!!!!!!!!

This book has abit of everything in it with fighting, Fantasy and Romance ....... Looking forward to reading the rest of the series ......

I rate this book 41/2 ****

Books in the series

Wicked Lovely

Ink Exchange

Fragile Eternity

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


The winner of the new Sophie Kinsella book is.......

Elisa Hutchings.

She wrote:

"The Twilight series by Stephanie Meyer is so awesome. You have leading men that can both take your breath away...who could choose?"

Congralutions Elisa. Please email us at and provide us with your mailing address so that we can post the book out to you.

Thank you all for participating. Keep dropping pass, there are ALWAYS new books being reviewed and you never know when we'll run another competition.

Happy Reading

Monday, October 26, 2009

"The Five Greatest Warriors" by Matthew Reilly [5]

Jack West Jr and his loyal team are in desperate disarray: they've been separated, their mission is in tatters, and Jack was last seen plummeting down a fathomless abyss.

After surviving his deadly fall, Jack must now race against his many enemies to locate
and set in place the remaining pieces of The Machine before the coming Armageddon.

As the world teeters on the brink of destruction, Jack will learn of the Five Warriors,
the individuals who throughout history have been most intimately connected to his quest.

Scores will be settled, fathers will fight sons, brothers will battle brothers, and Jack and his
friends will soon find out exactly what the end of the world looks like...

If our rating system would go any higher I would give this 10 stars...

For those of you that like action, adventure and a little science fiction in your novels then this series by Matthew Reilly is a must read. From the moment you open to the first page you will not be able to put it down until you have finished the whole novel...
These are not short stories either... each book is around 450 pages.

These are not girly books, so some of you might not enjoy them, but before you dismiss them too quickly I'd give the first in the series a go!

I don't want to give the story line away to much, but it's about saving the human race from the brink of destruction using ancient devices, hieroglyphics, and brute force...
This book is the third in the series with the character of Jack west Jr.

Fantastic read and totally recommend...

I rate this book 5 stars.

In the series...
1. Seven Ancient Wonders.
2. Six Sacred Stones.
3. The Five Greatest warriors.

"A Touch of Dead" by Charlaine Harris [4]

Sookie Stackhouse is everybody's favourite cocktail waitress:
a cute, bubbly blonde... who can read minds. But Sookie's far from being the only person
in Bon Temps, Louisiana with a handicap, what with the local vampire population demanding
their unhuman rights and weres fighting for territory...

In fact, Bon Temps is a pretty lively place these days!

A Touch of dead collects together all the Sookie Stackhouse short stories in one volume.

Absolutely love the Sookie series and thought this was the next in the series...
so I was a little disappointed to find out that it wasn't.

This novel ties up some loose ends if you like... it is a series of short stories that
interweave themselves between some of the original books.

Most of the characters are people you already know and I guess the author felt like that
some of the stories needed more detail to them. Clever idea!
In all there are five short stories.

Well written, and short enough that you could easily finish this novel in a sitting.

Really looking forward to the next book in the series.

For all the Sookie fans you'll enjoy this one...

I rate this book 4 stars.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

"The Silver Blade" by Sally Gardner [4 1/2]

The blade of the guillotine falls on the neck of the King himself, and the spirit of the French Revolution lies in tatters. The reign of Terror has begun.

Yann Margoza, the mysterious young man known as the magician, is helping desperate people to escape to England, where Sido, the girl he loves, waits to hear from him.

But Yann's past haunts him. He is in grave danger, and so is Sido. For under the streets of Paris, in the catacombs, the howl of a great beast can be heard. And a boy with angelic looks and an evil heart is ready to do the bidding of a man who has made a pact with the devil.

An enjoyable second novel.

When we left Yann at the end of the first novel he had rescued Sido and taken her to England to live with her aunt and Uncle. Yann decides to return to Paris to help evacuate those that are innocently being sent to the guillotine. Things don't go as smoothly as they hope and soon Yann and his friends lives are in risk.

Sally Gardner did a good job finishing the story off from the first novel.

Just like her first it is full of murder, magic, secrets and passion and you are swept away into a time of utter terror, where just a wrong look at your neighbour could send you to the guillotine.
Wonderfully written and easily read you will be totally lost inside the story.

Well worth a read.

I rate this book 4 1/2 stars.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

GIVEAWAY - it's our first (competition now closed)

Over here at Exclusively Books we love a freebie just as much as anyone.

And for no other reason than just because, we thought we would run our very first giveaway.

We are giving away 1 copy of Sophie Kinsella's new book, Twenties Girl.

It's our bookclub read for November so join us.

To enter, leave a comment and let us know what your favourite chick lit book or author is. Or if you don't like chick lit just leave a nice comment saying so.

One entry per person and the competition closes 9pm central daylight savings time on Sunday, 25th November 2009.

We'll announce the winner on Monday.

Good luck and happy reading.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

"The Red necklace" by Sally Gardner [5]

Paris 1789

While the aristocracy dine, dance, gossip, and
gamble their way to disaster, the poor and starving
dream of revolution.

Enter the boy Yann Margoza, destined to be a hero;
Tetu the dwarf, his friend and mentor;
Sido, unloved daughter of the foolish Marquis de Villeduval;
and the sinister Count Kalliovski, who holds
half the aristocracy in thrall to him.

The drama moves from Paris to London and back,
as the Revolution gathers momentum, and the hope of liberty
and the dream of equality are crushed
beneath the wheel of terror.

This is a story that has everything, murder, mystery, passion and even a little magic.

Beautifully written... you will breeze through this novel before you even realize that you have finished.

From the very start to the finish you are transported into the terrifying world of the French Revolution...
Her characters are people that you identify with straight away...
You eagerly encourage Yann to fulfill his destiny...
Your heart breaks for Sido, all she wants is to be loved by her cruel father...
You cringe when the evil Count Kalliovski comes calling at Sido's home to make her father an offer...
Laugh at the antics of Tetu and his friends...

This book leaves you wanting more...literally...

Her story continues with "The Sliver Blade"

For me it is a must read, totally captivating.

I rate this book 5 stars.

Monday, October 19, 2009

"Blackthorn's Betrayal' by Elizabeth Pulford [4]

Blackthorn's greatest desire -
to become a Trahern warrior -
is dangling within her reach.

Blackthorn must embark on a treacherous mission,
travelling deep into enemy territory, to infiltrate the Doane camp.
But the stakes are higher than she could ever imagine.
As the mission takes a sinister twist, her instincts are put to the ultimate test.

Second book in this young teen series.

It has been a few years since Blackthorn has gone to live in the forest
and she has learnt a great deal. Still her one wish, to be recognized as a Trahern warrior
is still not fulfilled. When a man named Esil comes with a certain mission for her, she feels it is the only way she can show that she is worthy of being a Trahern warrior.

Blackthorn still has much to learn and this mission will teach her that.

Another fast-paced adventure that the younger readers will enjoy.

Elizabeth Pulford writes with poetic flare... the story comes to life as you emerge yourself into it.
Plenty of action as well as lessons to be learn.

Great read.

I rated this book 4 stars.

In this series
1. Blackthorn
2. Blackthorn's Betrayal

"Blackthorn" by Elizabeth Pulford [4]

Following the death of her father,
a great Trahern warrior, Alyana is determined
to stay true to her heart and follow in his footsteps.
She flees the confines of her Uncle's
family to make a life for herself in
her beloved forest.

There, she becomes Blackthorn,
the warrior.

But life in the forest is tough
- it's a struggle just to survive.

What a great adventure novel for the young teens. This is a series of novels by this author.
With just over 200 pages I got through this book in a couple of hours, so it isn't too taxing for the kids to read.

As a young girl Alyana has always dreamed of being a warrior just like her father.
With his death she makes the decision to finally achieve this dream.
What she doesn't seem to count on is all the pitfall's that this brings.
For every young boy or girl who has dreamed of being a warrior this series is for them.

It is full of adventure ...
You have to believe in yourself...
and dare to dream...

I rate this book 4 stars.

"The Angel's Game" by Carlos Ruiz Zafon [4]

In an abandoned Barcelona mansion David Martin is working himself to ill health
churning out steamy melodramas under a pseudonym, while yearning for the unattainable Cristina. When his own novel is published, to scathing reviews, David is close to despair.

Then he receives an extraordinary proposal from a reclusive French editor
named Andreas Corelli - a proposal that could bring hi great wealth and fame.
But David has discovered photographs and letters hidden in his house that hint at a sinister
mystery. And, like a slow poison, the history of the place seeps into his bones.

Fifth book read in the romance reading challenge.

What an interesting book this has turned out to be. I initially picked this book up because the cover intrigued me and when I read the back I thought I'd read it for this challenge. It hasn't turned out to be a romance in the true sense of romance novels, but nevertheless it does still come under that has a lot of mystery woven into it too!

David Martin is a struggling author who writes short story's for the newspaper he is working for.
He is befriended by a well known author and taken under his wings. He meets and falls in love with Christina who's father is the driver for the novelist. Over the next 10 years or so of his life changes occur and decisions are made that don't bring him any closer to his beloved Christina.
Then one day he gets involved with a French author and his life takes a dramatic turn and it's a race to save all he loves.

This is a bewitching novel that will keep you guessing until the end and even then you'll

Intrigue, passion, humour and suspense it has it all. Thoroughly enjoyable novel that has twists and plots enough to keep anyone guessing and in between is this romance that is seemingly unattainable.

Well worth the read.

I rated this book 4 stars.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

"The Graveyard Book" by Neil Gaiman [4]

Nobody Owens, known to his friends as Bod, is a normal boy.

He would be completely normal if he didn't live in a graveyard, being raised by ghosts.

There are dangers and adventures for Bod in the graveyard. But it is in the land of the living, that real danger lurks for it is there that the man Jack lives and he has already killed Bod's family.

"A truly captivating read."

I absolutely loved the movie "Stardust" and when Irish told me that it was the same author I had to read this book, for the read your name challenge.

What a wonderful sense of humour the author has...

All kids from the age of 10 and up would really enjoy reading this novel...
especially the boys!

Who would think that a child could be raised in a graveyard by ghosts and come out normal...
or does he?

Lots of adventure, secrets to uncover, and friendships to make.

Well worth reading.

I rate this book 4 stars.

[Hope he writes one to continue the story.]

Hey I've finished my first challenge...

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The Season by Sarah MacLean (5)

Seventeen-year-old Lady Alexandra Stafford doesn’t fit into the world of Regency London – she’s strong-willed, sharp-tongued, and she absolutely loathes dress fittings. Unfortunately, her mother has been waiting for years for Alex to be old enough to take part in the social whirlwind of a London Season so she can be married off to someone safe, respectable, wealthy, and almost certainly boring. But Alex is much more interested in adventure than romance.

Between sumptuous balls, lavish dinner parties and country weekends, Alex, along with her two best friends, Ella and Vivi, manages to get entangled in her biggest scrape yet. When the Earl of Blackmoor is killed in a puzzling accident, Alex decides to help his son, the brooding and devilishly handsome Gavin, uncover the truth. It’s a mystery brimming with espionage, murder, and suspicion. As she and Gavin grow closer, will Alex’s heart be stolen in the process?

Well I blame Legs for the bags under my eyes today ....... lol ........ I stayed up until the wee hours reading this novel ....... And for a debut novel it is excellent ........

I love all the characters ....... Especially Blackmoor and Freddy ......... If you just want to be whisked away where Manners are everything ........ Men where either Gentlemen or scoundrels ....... Woman dancing all night and in between all that you have a murder mystery to solve as well .......

This is a gorgeous book to read ........ Nice and clean ........ But with a hint of cheekiness ...... A story of friendship between 3 girls .... And their parents search to find them a husband ....

Ok ...... AS you can see I loved it ........ If you haven't picked a copy up yet ........ Please do ....... And the hardbook cover is lovely ........ This book is definitely one for the book shelf ......

I rate this book 5*****

Books in order of Series

The Season

Hurray yes she is going to be doing 2 more to this Series .... Hopefully coming out 2010 !!

Monday, October 12, 2009

The Struggle (The Vampire Diaries) by L J Smith (4)

In book two of the first Vampire Diaries omnibus, The Struggle, Elena quickly realizes that the only thing more dangerous that being in love with a vampire is being desired by two. As Stefan struggles to suppress his instinctive thirst, Damon persists in his quest for Elena's heart. A dark turn of events forces Elena to risk her mortality to save one of her immortal suitors.

The second book in the series .... 'The Vampire Diaries' .... namely 'The Struggle' and as the title suggests it is a struggle for Elena to choose the right brother !!!

Really fast paced and I read it in a couple of hours ...... Loved it ...... And now have to go out and scout around for the next few books .........

Damon just doesn't seem to want to leave ....... He has his eyes set on Elena and no one else will do ........ Can Stefan protect her? ......... And will the towns people start to get suspicious?

Again really well written that you really don't want to put it down ....... I love the characters and you cannot help but love the bad boy Damon !!!

Another great fantasy read !!!

I rate this book 4****

Warning: There is some blood-drinking in this book !!

The Awakening (The Vampire Diaries) by L J Smith (4)

In book one of the first Vampire Diaries omnibus, The Awakening, Elena is a high school golden girl, the one boys want and girls want to be. And Elena is used to getting what she wants. When she meets handsome, haunted Stefan, he struggles to resist her because of his dark secret. Stefan is torn by guilt over his past, and mindful of the threat that his vengeful brother, Damon, poses to anyone Stefan gets close to. Soon Elena finds herself torn between two brothers—and in terrible danger.

This is another series that you have bound to have heard of because of the new series that just started based on the books. The Vampire Diaries Books have been out a while well before Twilight so it was interesting to see if there was any similarities with the two of them .....

The characters in the series are a little bit different than the book but I suppose it had to be fluffed out abit of TV ....... But don't get me wrong I am lovin the Tv series at the moment ...

Anyway back to the book ...... Elena is blond, feisty, and the queen bee of the school ... Everyone adorns her or wants to be her ...... Her parents died 3 years prior and her and her baby sister are now living with her Aunt .... Things start to change when a new mysterious boy starts to turn heads ...... But for some reason he is avoiding Elena ...... She is going to have to use all her womanly charms on in order to catch him ...

But then strange things start to happen around town ..... And the eerie feeling that someone is watching her ........ Enter handsome but bad Damon ...

I took me abit to get the character of Elena in my head because she is different than the character in the TV series ....... But she is one Strong lady :) ........

I really enjoyed the book and it flowed really well ... Interested on how the relationship between the two brothers develop as the books go on ....

So if you love your fantasy and Vampire Books this is a must series for you to own and read ....

I rate this book 4 ****

Books in the series in order:
The Awakening
The Struggle
The Fury
Dark Reunion

And just to wet your appetite here's a pic of the cast of 'The Vampire Diaries' check it out if you haven't already ....

Sunday, October 11, 2009

"No Going Back" by Jonathon Langford [4]

The book club was offered to review a book that is about to be published in the states entitled
"No Going Back"

The story basically is about a young Latter-Day-Saint boy who discovers that he likes boys and how he deals with the beliefs he has and the feelings that come with this problem. He wants to be a good Mormon boy and he believes that being gay is wrong in God's eyes and his, but he has these overwhelming feelings that are hard to control.

The book goes into how his family feel about him coming out and also his best friend and how he deals with it as well as his family.

Having three boys of my own this story touched my heart. While I personally feel being gay is wrong, I don't feel it is right to persecute others who wish to explore this way of life.

I thought the author did a good job of writing from a boys point of view and as a mum it helped me a little to see where they are coming from.

I was a little disappointed with the way that the author chose to use bad language in it. I don't think he dealt fairly with the reaction from the members in the ward or the bishop. I think that some people will have a hard time understanding some of the terminology, unless they have had some experience with the Mormon church.

Overall it was well written. To me though I think it is a young adult read, not for kids.

Well done for a first novel.

I'd rated this book 4 stars.

Memoirs of a Scandalous Red Dress by Elizabeth Boyle [3 ]

What if all you have are the memories of a rake...
and the scandalous red dress that nearly brought you to ruin?

Reminders of the kisses he stole? Or his seductive, rakish smile as he charmed his way into your bed, stole your innocence and your heart? To proper and respectable Philippa, Lady Gossett,
such memories are best locked away. At least, so she thinks, until a stranger arrives
on her doorstep and offers her a chance to tempt fate once again...
to tempt Dash back into her life and quite possibly into her bed...

This is the third book in this series.

I actually struggled a little with this one for some reason...

It is written in the present which is 1837 and then goes back into the past of 1814.
While the flow between present and past isn't a problem, the story just doesn't quite grab you.
Pippin is the main character, she is the cousin to Tally who we meet in the book 'Confessions of a Little Black Gown'.

Her hero is the dashing pirate, Captain Thomas Dashwell.

The story and writing flow well, but I just couldn't relate to either character for some reason.

I found it dragged on a little with explaining the history of this couple and finding their way
back to each other. There is romance between them and they fall in love with each other. But due to circumstances they are separated for about 20 years.
In this period each has moved on with their lives...
but they still remember the passion they felt.

The question is... can they forgive each other and rekindle that passion?

Not a favourite in the series.

I rate this book 3 stars.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Australian Borders 100 Favourite Books of All Time

Click Here to see if your favourite made it on to the list.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

That time of year again :)

Well it is that time of the year again when we pick our choices for next years reads ..... So here is what we have got so far .........


The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown

The Lacemakers of Glenmara by Heather Barbieri

Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay


The Shack by William P Young

In the Woods by Tana French


Loving Frank: A Novel by Nancy Horan


Austenland - A Novel by Shannon Hale

Princess of the Midnight Ball by Jessica Day George


Have a Little Faith - A true Story by Mitch Albom

The Independence of Miss Mary Bennet

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