Wednesday, September 30, 2009

"Nefertiti" by Michelle Moran [4 1/2]


At the tender age of fifteen, Nefertiti marries Akhenaten, the Prince of Egypt, her dreams coming true as she rises to fame and fortune. Bathed and decorated by a team of body servants, her natural beauty is enhanced until she becomes mesmerizing. She is soon the darling of the people and her husband's closest confidant.
But when her husband breaks with a thousand years of tradition, defying the priests and the military, it will take all Nefertiti's wiles to keep the nation from being torn apart. She's prepared to sacrifice her sister to strengthen her power and this act will lock the two women in a feud that only death can break...

A hugely enjoyable and compelling story that will keep you riveted until the end.

Written from Nefertiti's sisters point of view, it is the story of how one young woman rose from being a princess to a ruling Pharaoh. The author has stayed true to the facts as much as possible.
It truly amazes me that at 15 years old Nefertiti is married and soon starts to have children...six girls in the end...not a son in sight.

What is interesting is how she is able to manipulate her husband Amunhotep into becoming
co regent...which has never been done before.

The wealth that these people had to be able to build cities in the middle of a desert and then it is just left to be destroyed by the sands of time, and they just don't blink an eye...

The author has a wonderful way of telling what life was like back in Egypt 1351B.C, you feel like you are living it yourself.

A compulsively readable novel.

I rated this book 4 1/2 stars.

Monday, September 28, 2009

"A Duke of her Own" by Eloisa James [4 1/2]


Leopold Dautry, the notorious Duke of Villiers, must wed quickly and nobly -
and his choices,alas, are few. The Duke of Montague's daughter, Eleanor, is exquisitely beautiful
and fiercely intelligent. Villiers betroths himself to her without further ado.
After all, no other woman really qualifies.

Lisette, the outspoken daughter of the Duke of Gilner, cares nothing for clothing
or decorum. She's engaged to another man, and doesn't give a fig for status or title.

Half the ton believes Lisette mad - and Villiers is inclined to agree.

Torn between logic and passion, between intelligence and the imagination, Villiers
finds himself drawn to the very edge of impropriety. But it is not until he's in a duel to the death,
fighting for the reputation of the woman he loves, that Villiers finally realizes that the
greatest risk may not be in the dueling field...

But in the bedroom. And in the heart.

Book 6 in the Desperate Duchess series.

The final book in this series and it finished it off brilliantly.

The Duke of Villiers has become a favourite character of mine, and I was curious as to the type of woman that would eventually capture his heart.

Leopold has been hurt in his younger life but he hides it in his arrogance and in his dress.
Eleanor has felt the passion of love but was betrayed and thought she would be without it ever again. The two of them come together for different reasons, but in their developing friendship find that they need and want each other desperately.

Will the Duke be brought to his knees by this beauty?

Will Eleanor ever trust her heart again?

A truly delicious treat to finish off this series.

Wonderfully written, a book you want to finish in a sitting.

I rated this book 4 1/2 stars.

Books in this series in order
Desperate Duchess
An Affair Before Christmas
Duchess by Night
When the Duke Returns
This Duchess of Mine
A Duke of her Own

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins (5)


Warning : Do not read this if you haven't read The Hunger Games as it contains spoilers ..

After winning the brutal Hunger Games, Katniss Everdeen returns to her district, hoping for a peaceful future. But Katniss starts to hear rumours of a deadly rebellion against the Capitol. A rebellion that she and Peeta have helped to create. As Katniss and Peeta are forced to visit the districts on the Capitol's cruel Victory Tour, the stakes are higher than ever. Unless Katniss and Peeta can convince the world that they are still lost in their love for each other, the consequences will be horrifying. This is the terrifying sequel to The Hunger Games .


Will unless you have been living on the moon for the past year you are bound to have heard of this series .... And eagerly waiting on the next installment ........... And I have to say that the second book is just as great as the first :) ............ The only downside is that we have to wait until next year to find out what happens next ........ All I can say is 'Please Suzanne don't let it be too long!' ............

With Katniss and Peeta winning The Hunger Games you just knew that them being happy was not going to last .... And that the Capitol will find some way of paying them back for their rebellion ...

The book is fast paced and I really didn't want it to end ......... And the way it did end ... Sucks ..... In a good way because it has kept you hanging for the next installment ....

I love the characters in the book and I have to say I am totally on Team 'Peete' ........

So if you haven't read the first book do yourself a favour and get a copy ........

I rate this book 5*****

Books in order of series:
The Hunger Games
Catching Fire

Saturday, September 26, 2009

The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards


Dr David Henry's wife, Norah, goes into labour with their first child on a bitterly cold winters evening in 1964 and he is forced to deliver the child in his surgery. The child, a boy named Paul, arrives safely and is perfect. Within moments of Paul's birth it becomes apparent to David that Norah is giving birth to a twin.


Before Norah is introduced to the twin David immediately detects that the twin, Phoebe, is born with Down Syndrome. Instantly recalling the impact of his owns sisters death on his mother, and not wanting Norah to go through the same pain, he decides that Phoebe should be placed in a institution. This decision effects his life and the lives of those around him.


David hands Phoebe over to Caroline, the nurse attending the birth, and requests that she carry out his wishes. But when Caroline arrives at the institution and surveys the conditions she makes the decision to raise Phoebe herself and give her the life that any child should be entitled too.


Norah never gets to meet her daughter and David, thinking he is saving Norah a lifetime of pain, tells her that their daughter was born stillborn.


I immediately felt a connection with this book as I have a younger sister with Down Syndrome. Luckily, that's as far as the similarities go between my life and the lives of the characters in the book.


I was really engrossed in this book and in the lives of the characters, although at times I felt a little overwhelmed by the senitment.


This book makes you look at how your actions ultimately result in positive or negative consequences, whether you realise it or not.


Other themes that Kim Edwards touches on throughout the book are: family secrets, grief, the healing power of love and redemption.


A moving story with a topic that will make for some interesting discussions.


I rate this book 4 stars

****

"This Duchess of Mine" by Eloisa James [4 1/2]


Wedding bells celebrating the arranged marriage between the lovely Duchess of Beaumont and her staid, imperturbable duke had scarcely fallen silent when a shocking discovery sent Jemma running from the ducal mansion. For the next nine years she cavorted abroad, creating one delicious scandal after another
{if one is to believe the rumours}.

Elijah, Duke of Beaumont,
did believe those rumours.
But the handsome duke needs an heir, so he summons his seductive wife home.
Jemma laughs at Elijah's cool eyes and icy heart -
but to her secret shock, she doesn't share his feelings.
In fact, she wants the impossible: her husband's heart at her feet.
But what manner of seduction will make
a man fall desperately in love...
with his own wife?

Book 5 in the Desperate Duchess series.

I think this would be my favourite one so far... only have one left to read.
I've really come too love the character of Jemma, Duchess of Beaumont and was hoping that the author would write another book that would finish off her story.

Jemma and Elijah, have been separated for nine years through misunderstanding and stubbornness on both their parts.

When Jemma is summoned home from Paris she seeks revenge from Elijah for the hurt he caused her... but like all good love story's she comes to realize that she still loves him and wants the same from him.

Is it too late to turn back the clock?

Will Jemma be able too woo her husband?

Will Elijah realize that there are more important things than politics.

Will love conquer all, or will it all be for nothing in the end?

Enjoyable read, this one has a bit of eroticism in it, so beware!

I rate this book 4 1/2 stars.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Discussion Questions for CloudStreet by Tim Winton

1. Tim Winton was twenty-two when his first book was
published and thirty when he completed Cloudstreet. As a
result, he has often been described as one of Australia’s most
precocious writers. Do you think Cloudstreet reflects the
preoccupations of youth?

2. Coastal places, water, fishing and boating often provide both
sources of action and symbolic power in Tim Winton’s work.
How central are they to Cloudstreet? Would you describe
it as a ‘coastal’ novel?

3. Winton has remarked that Australians have become ‘very
suburban’ and ‘don’t know anything about the outdoors. Their
dads and mums did, and their grandparents did. We are only
one generation from the farm, but you’d be surprised at
how little people know.’ Does Cloudstreet celebrate the
‘outdoors’ or the suburbs or both? Do you think it seeks to
remind people of their rural roots?

4. ‘Celebration’ is a word often used to describe Winton’s
themes. He praises ‘ordinary’ people’s lives. What particular
aspects of human existence does Cloudstreet celebrate?

5. Spirituality is explored in Cloudstreet in a variety of ways
and Winton has admitted to religious faith being a powerful
influence on his writing. What do you see as the tenets of his
faith as revealed in this novel?

6. ‘From me to you, the river. In me and you, the river. Of me, and
you, the river.’ (p203) This utterance by Fish is reminiscent of
the signs of the cross as made in Christian prayer. In your
opinion, is Fish praying to the river, to the unseen presence of
God, or to something else entirely?

7. Do you think the differences between Cloudstreet’s two
families, the Pickles and the Lambs, are representative of two
different strands in the cultural make-up of white Australians?

8. The ‘Shifty Shadow’ of fate figures as a potent force in
Cloudstreet. Do you think Winton celebrates or bemoans
its power in people’s lives? How fatalistic do you think his view
of the world is?

9. Cloudstreet demonstrates the ‘brute force’ and originality
of Winton’s language. If you dissect one paragraph you’ll find
that he never uses clich├ęd similes, verbs or adjectives.
Take this passage from p25: ‘Just near the crest of the hill where
the sun is ducking down, the old flatbed Chev gives up the fight and
stalls quiet. Out on the tray the kids groan like an opera. All around,
the bush has gone the colour of a cold roast ...Birds scuffle out of
sight. There’s no wind, though the Chev gives out a steamy fart.’
In your view, is language like this descriptive and exciting, or
is it at times difficult? Is Winton’s use of language something
that strikes you about his writing, or is it so integral to his
work that you don’t notice how different it is?

10. Cloudstreet is an imaginative flight of fancy which
expects the reader to believe in Fish’s ‘other world’ of water.
How convincingly does Winton make the reader believe that
such things as talking pigs exist?

11. Cloudstreet is set in Perth in the years following
WorldWar11. How much do we learn about the social changes
which were developing at this time from reading the novel?

12. In view of the picture Cloudstreet paints of life in the
fifties, would you describe it as a work of nostalgia? Is it
nostalgic in other ways?

Thanks to Penguin Notes for the Discussion Questions

Blood Promise by Richelle Mead (41/2)


Bound by love,but sworn to kill ... The rest of the world had considered Dimitri dead. And to a certain extent, he was. But I hadn't been able to forget a conversation he and I had once had. We'd both agreed that we'd rather be dead, truly dead that walk the world as Strigoi. It was time to honour our words.

I have anxiously been waiting for this book to come out ..... As the last book in the series ended with a cliff-hanger ....... And I was not disappointed ....... It seems that the more the series goes on the better the books are .....

Warning this will contain spoilers if you have not read the previous books ... Rose's world has fallen apart with Dimitri changed to a Strigoi ..... Her mission now is to find him and kill him.... But when she is face to face with Dimitri will she be able to carry out the promise she made to him ...

You still have your favourite characters in Lissa and also the wickedly lovely Adrian and some new characters appearing as well ..... It is a really easy read and Richelle takes you through many twists and turns ....

If you love your Vampire books then this series is one you should read ..... The only problem now is that I have to wait until next year to see what happens .......

I rate this book 41/2 ****

Books to in series in order:
Vampire Academy
Frostbite
Shadow Kiss
Blood Promise
Spirit Bound ( coming out in 2010)

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

"When the Duke Returns" by Eloisa James [4]


Married by proxy as a child, Lady Isidore has spent years fending off lecherous men in every European court while waiting to meet her husband. She's determined to accept him, no matter how unattractive the duke turns out to be. When she finally lures Simeon Jermyn back to London, his dark handsomeness puts Isidore's worst fears to rest - until disaster strikes.

The Duke demands an annulment!

The fourth book in the Desperate Duchess series.

Thoroughly enjoyed this story about Isidore and her Duke Simeon. After waiting eleven years for her husband to claim her and their marriage, Isidore and her best friend Duchess Jemma Beaumont cook up a scheme to lure Simeon back from his travels in the wilds of Africa.
Isidore is ready in every way to become a wife and mother and the proper Duchess of Cosway.
Simeon on the other hand is unprepared for the headstrong beauty that is his wife. He has been instructed in the ways of...well he is just dull. He hides his emotions, he wants a wife who is biddable and will do as she is told.

Well let the games begin...

Who will win...or will there be a comprise of sorts...

Will both of them realize that they need each other before it is too late.

A good light fun hearted read.

Strange Angels by Lili St Crow (4)



Dad? Zombie.
Mum? Long gone.

Me? Well, that's the scary part.

Dru Anderson has been 'strange' for as long as she can remember, travelling from town to town with her father to hunt the things that go bump in the night. It's a weird life, but a good one – until it all explodes in a broken-down town when a hungry zombie busts through her kitchen door. Alone, terrified, and trapped, Dru's going to need every inch of her wit and training to stay alive. Chances of survival? Slim to none.

If she can't last until sun up, it's game over...

The first installment of a new series ........... And I loved it ........ This is Lili St. Crow's first stab at the Young Adult Market and it is great !!! ......... If you love your fantasy this book has it all ... Vampires, Were's and a host of other creatures .......... Throw a couple of hunky guys in the mix and you have your romance as well :) ........

The character of Dru is sassy and funny at the same time .... And even though she has been brought up knowning about the 'other world' around us ....... She is still unprepared for what is going to happen ....... Who can she trust? ..........

It is great that there are so many books out there at the moment with girl heriones .... And Dru is definately one of them ...... The next book 'Betrayals' comes out in November so not much of a wait thankfully ........

The only down side to the book is there is abit of swearing in it ....... Otherwise I would have rated it higher ........ So if you are looking to take a bite out of some fantasy ........ This book is for you !!!

I rate this book 4 ****

Here's the Book Trailer ... Enjoy :)



Monday, September 21, 2009

"Prophecy of the Sisters" by Michelle Zink [4 1/2]


Twin sisters Lia and Alice Milthorpe have just become
orphans. They have also become enemies. As they discover
their roles in a prophecy that has turned generations of sisters
against each other, the girls find themselves uncovering a lifetime of secrets.

Secrets that could destroy everything.

Lia and Alice don't know who they can trust.

They just know they can't trust each other!

An interesting story that is set in America around 1890. Twin sisters Lia and Alice and their younger brother Henry are left orphans after their fathers death. The girls have never been really close like twins often are, but things get stranger and they become even more separate from each other after their fathers death.

Lia makes some unusual discoveries that will change their lives forever.

A really interesting story with sister against sister and a fight to save the world.

Well written and enjoyable to read. The only problem is.... it's a series and now you have to wait to see what happens....AAAAHHH!

Look forward to the next one!

I rate this book 4 1/2 stars.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Interview with a Vampire by Anne Rice (41/2)


In A Darkened Room A Young Man Sits Telling The Macabre And Eerie Story Of His Life - The Story Of A Vampire, Gifted With Eternal Life, Cursed With An Exquisite Craving For Human Blood. Anne Rice's Compulsively Readable Novel Is Arguably The Most Celebrated Work Of Vampire Fiction Since Bram Stoker's Dracula Was Published In 1897. As The Washington Post Said On Its First Publication, It Is A 'thrilling, Strikingly Original Work Of The Imagination ...sometimes Horrible, Sometimes Beautiful, Always Unforgettable'.

The first book in the Series The Vampire Chronicles ..... And really this is where all the Vampire books really stem from apart from Bram Stoker's Dracula. Hard to imagine that this was written in 1976 .. I would have been 4 years of age !!! ...... It is a brilliant book to read and one of those that is one the 1001 books you should read before you die ... And quite rightly so it was a real pleasure to read :) ........

The basically narrated by Louis who got turned by Lestat a vampire .... It will be interesting to read the other books as they are about Lestat to see if my feelings change over the course of the next two books ... We read of the struggle that Louis has that even though he is turned into a vampire he still feels human emotion which is unheard of by any other vampire ...

This book is a must read if you are a Vampire Lover just because if we didn't have this novel we wouldn't have such a wide range of Fantasy Authors today .........

I rate this book 4 1/2 ****

The rest of the series goes like this ... The Vampire Lestat (1985); The Queen of the Damned (1988)

As you know this book got made into a movie which I just loved .... And it was not to bad with sticking to the book ...... But as ever the book is better :) ..... But you have a brilliant cast in Brad Pitt, Tom Cruise, Christian Slater and Kirsten Dunst who plays the young girl brilliantly ...... Here's the trailer .... Enjoy


"Ecstasy" by Jacquelyn Frank [4]


At one with the darkness, the mysterious Shadowdwellers must live as far from light-loving humans as possible in order to survive. Yet one damaged human woman will tempt the man behind the Shadowdweller throne into a dangerous desire...

After a terrifying car crash, Ashla Townsend wakes up to find that the bustling New York she knew is now eerie and desolate. Just when she's convinced she's alone, Ashla is confronted by a dark warrior who draws her deeper into a world she never knew existed. The bond between Ashla and Trace is a mystery to both, but searching for answers will mean confronting long-hidden secrets, and uncovering a threat that could destroy everything Trace holds precious...

Third book in Read your name challenge.

OOH, AAH, this is rather steamy!!

Didn't quite realize that this was an adult read... the story is what drew me to it.

That said I actually did enjoy it, if you can get past the erotic parts in the book.

Loved the character's of Trace and Ashla and the way they are drawn to each other and the depth of their feelings for each other... what starts out as probably pure lust turns into deep abiding love... something I think every woman would want in a relationship.

Well written, story line was quite intriguing.

The second book in this series is called "Rapture".

A good fluff read as I call them....nothing too serious or complicated.

I rate this book 4 stars.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

"Shiver" by Maggie Stiefvater [5]


The Cold.
Grace has spent years watching the wolves in the woods behind her house.
One yellow-eyed wolf - her wolf -
watches back. He feels deeply familiar
to her, but she doesn't know why.

The Heat.
Sam has lived two lives. As a wolf, he
keeps the silent company of the girl he
loves. And then, for a short time each year,
he is human, never daring to
talk to Grace...until now.

The Shiver.
For Grace and Sam, love has always
been kept at a distance. But once it's spoken,
it cannot be denied. Sam
must fight to stay human - and Grace
must fight to keep him - even if it
means taking on the scars of the past,
the fragility of the present, and the
impossibility of the future.

Second book read in the name challenge.

Absolutely brilliant....wow, wow, wow!

I so enjoyed reading this book, that it was read in a day...

Could not put it down...

The author is just fantastic and becoming a firm favourite of mine.

Her writing style is so easy to read, it just flows...
A beautiful love story that you think will just not work and defies logic.

I don't want to say too much about the story as it will give it away, so here is just a little snippet...

'And then I opened my
eyes and it was just Grace and
me - nothing anywhere but
Grace and me - she pressing
her lips together as though she
were keeping my kiss inside
her, and me holding this
moment that was as fragile
as a bird in my hands.'

What I will say is that it is written from Grace's view and
Sam's view, which is really good.

It is definitely a must read...especially teenage girls,they will fall in love with it.

If I could give it more than five stars I would.

Have to Read!

"The Little Giant of Aberdeen County" by Tiffany Baker [3 1/2 ]


Truly Plaice - part behemoth, part witch, part cinderella - is born larger than life into a small minded town. Her birth rocks the pillars of tiny Aberdeen, New York, and breaks her family into smithereens.

She spends a painful childhood in the shadow of her older sister Serena's beauty, and is teased mercilessly for her enormous physique. But when Serena unexpectedly vanishes and leaves her son in Truly's care, Truly must become mistress of a house she did not choose and the unwilling victim of her brother-in-law, Doctor Robert Morgan. Once her childhood tormentor, he now subjects her to brutal criticism and cruel medical experiments that test her endurance past breaking point - but Truly may have more power than he realizes...

First book in the read your name challenge.

The front cover of this book drew my to it and the write up that it was a 'Gothic tale of murder, revenge and redemption'....

Well it has murder and redemption...but it certainly isn't Gothic!

A debut novel for the author and well I struggled a little with it.

For me it took quite a while to get into the story of Truly taking care of her nephew in her brother-in-laws house, and that is where the story gets interesting. It has a few twists and turns and once you get into it, it's interesting to read.

I don't know why they said it was a Gothic tale because to me that implies it's set in a period time like the 1800's or such...this is set in the 1960's.

Interesting read but wouldn't pick it up again soon too read.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

So Many Books .... Not enough time ....

























Just picked up 4 books that I have been dying to read ....... Just got to find the time now to read them ...

1. The next installment of the Hunger Games .... Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
2. The 4th book of the Vampire Academy .... Blood Promise by Richelle Mead
3. The first book of a series .... Strange Angels by Lili St Crow
4. And the first book by Aprilynne Pike .......... Wings ...

"Catching Fire" by Suzanne Collins [5]


If it were up to me, I would try to forget the Hunger Games entirely.

Never speak of them. Pretend they were nothing but a bad dream. But the Victory Tour makes that impossible. Strategically placed almost midway between the annual Games, it is the Capitol's way of keeping the horror fresh and immediate. Not only are we in the districts forced to remember the iron grip of the Capitol's power each year, we are forced to celebrate it.

And this year, I am one of the stars of the show.

Katniss Everdeen survived the Hunger Games.

Now the Capitol wants Revenge!

The Second book in the Heart - Stopping Hunger Games Trilogy.

I have been waiting for ages for this next one to come out...and I certainly wasn't disappointed with it at all.

It leaves off after Katniss and Peeta return from the games and the Capitol makes them tour around the districts in celebration of the games. Their lives have changed as they have now been given a more comfortable living situation, but the Capitol are not happy at all.

A visit from President Snow strikes fear into Katniss who thought that it was all over.

Now the games have only just begun and it's a race to see who will survive.

This second book was just as brilliant as the first... I read it in one sitting as I just could not put it down. Full of adventure, suspense, drama, action, a love triangle between the main characters,
it has it all. Can't wait for the final installment to see how it all ends.

If you loved the first one, then your going to enjoy this one just as much.

Brilliant read!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

The Touch of Twilight by Vicki Pettersson (2)


Joanna Archer has reluctantly accepted the roles destiny assigned her: Avenger, Savior ... Destroyer.

On the surface she's a sexy, sophisticated socialite, at home among the beautiful people of the Las Vegas upper crust. But Joanna Archer inhabits another world: a place ordinary humans can't see and could never enter ... a dangerous dimension where an eternal battle rages between the agents of Light and Shadow. And Joanna is both.

She never asked for the mantle that's been thrust upon her, but she will not abandon it now that it's hers. Stalked by an enigmatic doppleganger from a preternatural realm, Joanna can feel the Light failing – which is propelling her toward a terrifying confrontation with the ultimate master of evil, the dark lord of Shadow: her father.

Vegas is all about winning big – or losing everything. To save her friends, her future, her worlds, Joanna Archer will now have to gamble it all by fully embracing the darkness inside her.

Well this is the third book in the series .... And it does have abit less language but still I would class it as an Adult book ....

The first two signs of the Zodiac have been fulfilled and now everyone is waiting with baited breath on the third sign ....... Will the Shadow side overshadow the light side of Olivia .... Will she turn her back on her troop to follow her fathers footsteps .......

I quite like the character of Olivia and also of Hunter but again there is alot of language and violence in this one as well ... But then again this series has been classed as 'Dark Urban' ...

I rate this book 2**

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The Taste of Night by Vicki Pettersson (2)

Being mortal isn't easy. Being a superhero is even harder.

Even mortal, Joanna Archer was nobody's idea of a victim. But now, infused with the supernatural power to alter the battle between Shadow and Light forever, what she's become is a target. And when a toxic virus invades the valley, her allies are targets are well. To find the cure that will save them, Joanna must embrace her Shadow side ... even if it leads her into an all-out battle with the demons of her past.

The second book of the series Sign of the Zodiac and this one has more bad language than the first and more graphic sexual scenes .......

It follows Joanna who has finally found her place in the Zodiac ... But she is becoming a pawn for everyone around her getting pushed and pulled in different directions ...... She is finding it hard to let go of her old life and embrace her new life as the 'Archer' ..... Will she be able to set a side her personal feelings and function as part of the group or will she catch down her own agenda to the peril of those closest around her ...... Sounds great doesn't it !!! ........ Just a real shame that there is so much sexual references and bad language other wise it would be a great wee story line ....

This is definitely another Adult book even more so than the first of the series so be warned ...

I rate this book 2 **

The Scent of Shadows by Vicki Pettersson (2)


When she was 16, Joanna Archer was brutally assaulted and left to die in the Nevada desert. By rights, she should be dead. Now a photographer by day, she prowls a different Las Vegas after sunset - a grim, secret Sin City where Light battles Shadow - seeking answers to whom or what she really is . . . and revenge for the horrors she was forced to endure.But the nightmare is just beginning - for the demons are hunting Joanna, and the powerful shadows want her for their own . . .

Well everyone is raving about Vicki Pettersson and her latest book has been in the Top Bestsellers list for a while so I thought I would give her a whirl ...

I think after reading so many Young Adult books to go straight into this series was abit of a shock ... Be prepared for bad language and adult themes ......

The story line is interesting with Joanna being forced to leave behind her old life and get thrown into someone Else's life .... She has to try and figure out who she can trust and bring the 'Light' side of the Zodiac's together ....... And it is not everyday that you find out that you are a Superhero ..........

This is the first book of the series and at the moment there are 4 books released ........ This series is definitely one for the adult audience because of the content .....

I rate this book 2**

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

"Fire Study" by Maria V. Snyder [5]


When word that Yelena is a Soulfinder - able to capture and release souls - spreads like wildfire, people grow uneasy. Already Yelena's unusual abilities and past have set her apart. As the Council debates Yelena's fate, she receives a disturbing message: a plot is rising against her homeland, led by a murderous sorcerer she has defeated before...

Honor sets Yelena on a path that will test the limits of her skills, and the hope of reuniting with her beloved spurs her onward. Her journey is fraught with allies, enemies, lovers and would-be assassins, each of questionable loyalty. Yelena will have but one chance to prove herself - and save the land she holds dear.

The final installment to this series and it was brilliant!

It is rare I think to find a series where each book is as good as the previous, but this is one of them. Really well written, easily read, flows beautifully, and hard to put down until your finished.
This final book finds Yelena coming to terms with her magical ability, although she is being forced too. The Sorcerer that she thought was safely put in the dungeon has escaped with help from a supposed friend, who is out to conqueror her homeland. As her journey to catch these criminals continues she finds strength in her abilities as she uses them, and also her friends.
Yelena discovers who are her real friends and who are not to be trusted... with dire consequences to follow. She learns more about the people around her, and about herself as well.
Absolutely loved this series and will read it again at some point.

The author is writing a new novel entitled "Storm Glass," which is about Opal from this series... so it is an off shoot of sorts. Sounds interesting!

Hope you enjoy this series as much as I did...

A big 5 stars...

Friday, September 4, 2009

"Magic Study" by Maria V. Snyder [5]


So far, I've managed to survive. You would think after being kidnapped as a child, imprisoned in my teens and released to become a poison taster, I would have endured enough. But no. the discovery of my magical abilities - powers forbidden in Ixia - has resulted in an execution order. My only chance is to flee to Sitia, my long-lost birthplace.

But Sitia is unfamiliar. I'm treated like an enemy - even by my own brother. Plus I can't control my powers. I want to learn about my magic, but there isn't time. A rogue magician has emerged and I'm targeted as his next victim.

Will my magical abilities save me...or be my downfall?

Usually the second novel isn't as good as the first... well this is just as good!

After surviving all the intrigue from the first novel, Yelena now has to leave the territory of Ixia and her beloved Valek as she has an execution order on her, because she has magical abilities. Finally, Yelena will find out about her family and where she comes from...
Irys is the Fourth Magician from Sitia and she will introduce Yelena to her family and to the world of magic.

All does not go well though... soon Yelena is involved in more murder and mystery and it will be up to her to solve the problem... and to come to grips with her own magical abilities.

A truly wonderful series that you can't put down until your finished. Can't rave enough about it...
You have to read it...

Next book: "Fire Study"

"Poison Study" by Maria V. Snyder [5]


Locked in a coffin-like darkness, there is nothing to distract me from my memories of killing Reyad. He deserved to die - but according to the law, so do I. Here in Ixia, the punishment for murder is death. And now I wait for the hangman's noose.

But the same law that condemns me may also save me. Ixia's food taster - chosen to ensure that the Commander's food is not poisoned - has died. And by law, the next prisoner who is scheduled to be executed - me - must be offered the position.

As the front cover of this book states: ' This is one of those rare books that will keep you dreaming long after you've read it....

From the moment you pick up this novel to the time it is finished you can not put it down and cannot stop thinking about it. It's a fast packed adventure and suspense all weaved into a fantasy novel...just brilliant.
Yelena is our heroine who is sentenced to death... but through the twist of the law system is given the chance to live... though she is to be the food taster and how long she lives...well that's any ones guess?
Valek, is the Commander's personal security chief and the leader of the vast intelligence network, a chief advisor... is he to be trusted...he has already poisoned Yelena too keep her close.

All Yelena wants is too escape to the Sitia territory and be free of all the pain that she has endured...
but now she has to find the cure for the poison that has been given to her...
but is it all as it seems?

Fantastic debut novel, highly recommend to those that love there fantasy books.

Next in the series : "Magic Study".

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

"Lament" by Maggie Stiefvater [4 1/2 ]

Sixteen year old Deirdre Monaghan is a prodigiously gifted musician. She's about to find out she's also a cloverhand - one who can see faeries.
Unexpectedly, Deirdre finds herself infatuated with a mysterious boy named Luke who enters her ordinary life, seemingly out of thin air. But his interest in her might be something darker than summer romance. When a sinister faerie named Aodhan shows up with deadly orders from the faerie Queen, it forces Dee right into the midst of Faerie. Caught in the crossfire with Deirdre is James, her wisecracking but loyal best friend.
Deirdre had been wishing her summer weren't so dull, but taking on a centuries-old Faerie Queen isn't exactly what she had in mind.
Another wonderfully told Faerie love story about a young musically gifted girl,
who meets and falls in love with a faerie assassin who is sent to kill her. He is intrigued by her, and after getting to know her falls in love as well. It is a forbidden love and now the Faerie Queen is after both of them.
Beautifully written, it is magical and musical and radiates romance and every teenage girl will just love reading this novel.
Of course the story doesn't end here... it continues with the next novel entitled
"Ballard".
Quite enjoying reading the faerie books at the moment and comparing the authors.
A great read... you will enjoy!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The Forest of Hands & Teeth by Carrie Ryan (5)


In Mary's world there are simple truths. The Sisterhood always knows best. The Guardians will protect and serve. The Unconsecrated will never relent. And you must always mind the fence that surrounds the village; the fence that protects the village from the Forest of Hands and Teeth. But, slowly, Mary's truths are failing her. She's learning things she never wanted to know about the Sisterhood and its secrets and the Guardians and their power and about the Unconsecrated and their relentlessness. When the fence is breached and her world is thrown into chaos, she must choose between her village and her future - between the one she loves and the one who loves her. And she must face the truth about the Forest of Hands and Teeth. Could there be life outside a world surrounded in so much death?

This is the first book of the RIP challenge that I am doing ...... And I loved it :) ........ It was an easy read and I couldn't put it down .......... Dishes and Kids where left to my poor husband to sort out while I was totally engrossed in the book ........ Like a another reviewer said "putting the book down is not an option."

It is a young adult read and yes it does have Zombies in it ......... I heard that they have decided to make this into a movie which will be brill ...... Reading it did remind me abit of 'The Village' but a totally different concept ..... I will definitely be going out and buying more books by Carrie ...

Ok getting back to the book .... It is about a girl called Mary who lives in a village surrounded by the Unconsecrated ........ She dreams for escaping and hopes that there are other people like her beyond the Forest of Hands & Teeth .... Her whole world changes when her Mother is turned ...... And her only option is to stay with the Sisterhood who claim they are the ones who protect the village ....

If you love fantasy books and of course Zombie books you are going to eat this up ( excuse the pun )

I rate this book 5*****

Here is short trailer put together for the book ...



I am excited as the companion/sequel to The Forest of Hands & Teeth is coming out in the Spring 1010 in USA ......

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