Sunday, 27 July 2014

Sunday Post and Stacking Shelves #52

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer ~ It’s a chance to share news~ A post to recap the past week on your blog (we modified it to include some more stuff), showcase books and things we have received and share news about what is coming up on our blog for the week ahead. 

I'm basically back now! Wow the unplanned break was rather great but I felt so bad about not posting a lot and I've managed to not write any reviews for about a week so I have to catch up. But my week has been rather great. I managed to buy 4 books for £2 which is like a miracle and I'm super excited to read them because of the bargain they were! 

Currently Reading

Delirium by Lauren Oliver 
Delirium (Delirium #1)

Stacking the Shelves

Half Bad (Half Life, #1)Hunger (Gone, #2)Lies (Gone, #3)Gone (Gone, #1)

What Happened 

Saturday, 26 July 2014

Just Keep At It- Author Post by Dane Richter

Dane Richter was lovely enough to write a guest post for us here and it's absolutely brilliant so if you have some time read it here

Working at a school, I am in a unique position to see young minds develop and more importantly how young people perceive themselves in what they are able to do and achieve. Earlier this year, a young Muslim girl originally from Somalia had heard from another teacher that I had written a book and wanted to see it, as she had an interest in journalism as a potential career pathway. I showed her my debut novel: Hunt for the Star to which she immediately cried out, “I could never write something like that!” This was due to the tome’s hefty 170k word length and yes, to write something that size is a daunting undertaking. I am not a fan of people who use words like “can’t” or “never” or “won’t” especially when those words are used in conjunction with “I”. I told her how I wrote my book.
After having the desire to write a book, I sat down and came up with some character names, plot ideas and a map. At the end of 6 months I had about 9 pages written - a back story which set up the plot for the current timeline. After 18 months, I had about 57 pages (I guess it’s worth saying I was doing a BA Commerce Degree at the time and most of my writing was getting done during the semester breaks). During the next year, I committed a couple of hours a night going over the work. Sometimes I would write a page, sometimes half a page, sometimes just 1 or 2 sentences, and sometimes I’d delete a sentence. It was frustrating at times especially when I had less words at the end of the session than when I started. However, for whatever reason, I judged the book to be better without that sentence and so even when deleting, my work was progressing forward. That’s the beauty of writing; you will always move forward and the old adage applies - just keep at it. In the end, those first 9 pages I wrote over 6 months were scrapped during editing, but the overall story is better for it.
2 and a half years in and I had 150 pages. I deferred my education for a year and added another 140 pages or so and could see the finish line. It took me 4 years to write the first draft and the most beneficial advice I could give her was make it routine. A little bit each day is all you need. After hearing my story, the young Muslim girl who had come into my office with “I could never write something like that” went out thinking “maybe I can write a book” and I know that was a big step for her because from her country there are certain expectations for women, and education, career and ambition aren’t  any of them.
For anyone aspiring to write a book all you need to pencil in a little time each day. Once it becomes routine, there will be fewer days when you only write 1 or 2 sentences and more days when you produce 1 or 2 pages.

A little bit about Dane

Displaying Dane bw.jpgBorn in 1981, Dane Richter spent his early life growing up on a farm located about an hour east of Perth, Western Australia. A love of Enid Blyton’s works first introduced him to the world of fantasy and adventure and with time, shifted to works by Tolkien, Feist and Tad Williams which opened a wider spectrum of the fantasy genre.Although a deep-seeded passion for adventure and storytelling existed, during his high school years he had an aptitude for sport, excelling at track and field. Quickly rising up the ranks of Australia’s elite, he represented Australia in high jump at the IAAF World Junior Championships in 2000. He continued athletics for over a decade with personal bests of 2.19m in the high jump and 50.46s in the 400m hurdles and although he won numerous Australian national medals, a career dogged by injury saw him missing out on the 2002, 2006 and 2010 Commonwealth Games. Writing was a passion for Dane throughout his track and field career, beginning in 1999 and finishing the first draft of Hunt for the Star in 2003. With education and sport a primary focus, time afforded to writing was limited. Dane honed his skill over the next few years with affiliations to Tom Collins Writers House and the Speculative fiction group KSP Writers centre, whilst penning a sequel, Rise of the Deceiver.Dane completed a Bachelor degree in Commerce majoring in Accounting and Marketing in 2003 and worked in coaching and education over the next ten years with a brief stint as a freelance writer in 2006, publishing 23 articles as a sports writer for the Perth metro and country based paper, Community News Group.In 2011 Dane was introduced to Hal Colebatch - a contributing author to Larry Niven’s military sci-fi series, The Man-Kzin Wars. With Hal’s mentoring, Dane got his start with a small independent press who published the paperback version of Hunt for the Star in 2012. In 2013 Dane released the ebook, which is available on Amazon.


Friday, 25 July 2014

Discussion: Girl of Nightmares by Kendare Blake

Girl of Nightmares (Anna, #2)Girl Of Nightmares by Kendare Blake
Series: Anna #2
Published: August 7th 2012
Publisher: Tor Teen

Goodreads Review

It's been months since the ghost of Anna Korlov opened a door to Hell in her basement and disappeared into it, but ghost-hunter Cas Lowood can't move on. His friends remind him that Anna sacrificed herself so that Cas could live—not walk around half dead. He knows they're right, but in Cas's eyes, no living girl he meets can compare to the dead girl he fell in love with. Now he's seeing Anna everywhere: sometimes when he's asleep and sometimes in waking nightmares. But something is very wrong...these aren't just daydreams. Anna seems tortured, torn apart in new and ever more gruesome ways every time she appears. Cas doesn't know what happened to Anna when she disappeared into Hell, but he knows she doesn't deserve whatever is happening to her now. Anna saved Cas more than once, and it's time for him to return the favor.

Last year Rashika and I teamed up on reading the first book in this series Anna Dressed In Blood and we discussed it; you can check it out here.
We both had the second book so we decided to read it together yet again! I'm the purple and Rashika is the blue :-) 

What did you think of the second book then?

Ha, that’s a vague thing to ask. Overall I loved it just as much as I did the first one but there were so many things I missed from the first one. Like did you notice that this one wasn’t nearly as creepy as book 1 without Anna in it? DID YOU?

Hey! I was starting with the same question from our last review… Erm I still don’t quite know how I felt about this one. I loved the first book; but there was something off about this one. I think it was the lack of Anna and her “creepiness”.

Hmph I think that did affect how I felt about the book but at the same time I felt like there were so many other interesting things going on. Like trying to unravel the mystery behind Anna’s disappearance. The trio was fun to read about and I loved how they were willing to help Cas.

I found it kind of boring, them trying to figure out where Anna is… But I did love the three of them, especially the stuff going on between Thomas and Carmel.

Carmel may bother some people with her actions but to be honest, I actually liked that she doubted things. I mean she wasn’t born to that kind of life. She is human and if she weren’t at least the slightest bit doubtful.. I would be worried. Also you didn’t hear me say this but like, I found the first third to be BORING. I was just.. bored but then something changed and I become so emersed. I wanted to know how things would turn out. What the final showdown would be like, who this mysterious brotherhood was… we definitely did get more answers in this one.

I know! I felt a bit bored at the start too, I genuinely couldn’t get into the story. I don’t know why; then something changed and the excitement begun and I wanted all of the questions answered! I didn’t like the whole brotherhood stuff though. I found it so cliche. The showdown was sort of exciting but I wasn’t at all shocked with it. It felt really fake :/

You know what or rather WHO I didn’t like? JESTINE. I just… didn’t like her at all. I am not even sure what her purpose was to be honest. She just bothered me and I spent the whole book once she appeared, hating her. I actually didn’t notice any cliches but then again, I was inhaling the book and which was probably why I didn’t pick up on any. The duology on the whole does have a handful but I actually found the showdown to be interesting… and the resolution *cries*

AHH! That was heartbreaking, I nearly cried! Oh God. Do not get me started on Jestine! I didn’t think I could hate a character so much. I don’t understand why she was in the book? Like seriously. And why did Kendare have to chose that stupid name? Did she watch Tracy Beaker before she chose her name or something (It’s a kids tv show with a girl called Jestine who’s pretty much exactly like the one in the book!)

It was heartbreaking wasn’t it? But at the same time.. it seemed like the best thing to do. Not what I would want, but what would make sense but hey at least someone got an HEA. Going back to Jestine though, I was worried would be like a love interest for Cas with Anna gone and while I am glad that didn’t happen.. I just don’t know what her purpose was… she doesn’t even seem like a plot device. Just another character who was just there.. doing nothing…

At first I was hoping she would be this cool chick who’s kickass and a great character but after I think she was properly introduced I wanted to shoot her. She was so useless even if she did help Cas a little… I’m so glad that there wasn’t a love interest! That would have been horrible!

She was right? I don’t actually know why Cas likes her… it’s a weird friendship they share.

Anyway moving on from HER! One thing that annoyed me the most was the London trip! The whole dark alleys and pubs and everything. London isn’t exactly dark. OH! Then the Suicide Forest bit. I wanted to scream and punch something! That’s not in England! It’s in Japan! God damn it. PLUS THEY DIDN’T EVEN DRINK TEA!

WHATTT REALLLY? The suicide forest isn’t in the UK? O_O That sounds like a case of better research being needed to be done :( No way. I am pretty sure they drank tea at Gideons. HOW COULD THEY HAVE NOT? TEA IS LIFE. LIFE IS TEA.

The forest is called Aokigahara and it is most definitely not here!I mean she did get the suicide thing right, and that the forest is beautiful because the pictures are breath taking; but the wrong damn place! It angered me so much. WELL THEN THEY DID NOT DRINK ENOUGH TEA!!

I don’t think anyone can drink enough tea .-. I’d like to think they magically transported there but I don’t think that was the case because I am pretty sure that all happened in Scotland.

I can drink enough tea. I’m drinking tea right now. There is no such forest in Scotland anyway, I mean there’s a creepy ass bridge in Scotland that I want to visit so badly but apart from that…
Right lets get this show on the road, or at least off the road.
Final thoughts! Go!

Wonderful but it needed a lot more Anna.

I thought it was great and answered all the questions, but not at all close to being as good as Anna Dressed In Blood.

So final verdict??? We have slightly different opinions but in the end we both agree that that ending was heartbreaking.

Rashikas rating-

My rating-

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Top Ten Tuesdays #9

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

Today's topicTop Ten Characters I would want on a deserted Island with me. 

1-Katniss Everdeen- Pretty sure everyone will pick Katniss because of how badass she is! 
2- Augustus Waters- Mainly because I'm in love with him and I just want him with me everywhere. 
3- Dawn( from Revamped)- I just love her personality! 
4- Cas Longwood (from Anna Dressed In Blood) Just in case I need a rescue from a creepy ghost. 
5- Dean and Sam Winchester- So they are from Supernatural and it's a TV series but I just need them with me on a deserted island for their banter! 
7- Patch (from Hush Hush) Do I really need a reason? 
8-√Čtienne St. Clair I need his frenchness with me.
9-Christian Grey.... 
10- Bella Swan- Just in case we need to sacrifice someone. 

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Sunday Post #51

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer ~ It’s a chance to share news~ A post to recap the past week on your blog (we modified it to include some more stuff), showcase books and things we have received and share news about what is coming up on our blog for the week ahead. 

I haven't posted this week which sucks! But I also missed out some of the Sunday Posts so I just wanted to update you guys on what has been happening! 
I work a lot now and I'm usually super tired, and my cat gave birth on monday so I have little kittens in the house! Look how cute they are! 
Photo: #kittens #cute #threedaysold #catstagram

What Happened

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