Friday, 20 March 2015

#10 Black Mass Brides Review

The Black Mass Brides by E.J Cownley

I received this novella free in exchange for an honest review. First of all i would like to thank Emma Carney and the author Emma Cownley for sending me this novella.

The Black Mass Brides is a paranormal tale entwined with a little romance and a lot of darker elements that are of an adult nature. Along with the novella i received a link to a spotify playlist that is creating specifically to heighten the reading experience. It features bands like Fleetwood Mac and Lana Del Rey.

The story follows Ollie/Olive who meets a mysterious yet gorgeous guy called Zach. Ollie is a young graduate who works in a veterinary practice. She is a very skitish character that seems to be scared of her own shadow, this perhaps could have been explained a little more. Zach is some kind of paranormal entity called a cambion and he seems to have set his sights on Ollie, without giving too much away he is truly relentless in his quest for her. 

This story really wasnt what i was expecting, i expected a ditzy romance with light paranormal elements but what i got was so much more than that. This story had the right amount of creepiness but also had me laughing out loud! 

75 pages just wasnt enough for this fantastic story, it left me itching for more. What is commendable is that although this was only a short novella the author manages to effortlessly set the scene for the story, she sets up excellent imagery without over-doing it and she subtly character builds. 

This is an imaginative and unique take on a paranormal story. Ive read many paranormal books but none that even touched close on originality in the way The Black Mass Brides does. You instantly connect with Ollie/olive as a character as she is relatively normal and isnt over-imagined or given an overly quirky personality just to make her stand out and be memorable. This is a credit to the writing, that a normal girl can be so relatable but also likeable, you really root for Ollie throughout. 

I really enjoyed this story and was more than happy with the ending and the way the story turned out. I always dread endings when im reading something i like as it can bring down my rating massively if i dont agree with the ending but alas i was happy with this one.

Available at:*Version*=1&*entries*=0 for the bargain price of £1.94

For more info please see:

4/5 stars. 

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

#9 Salt and Stone Book Review

Salt & Stone (Fire & Flood Book 2)

This is the much anticipated second book from the Fire & Flood trilogy. The book is YA dystopian and action packed. I know a lot of people dislike these books as they have been likened to The Hunger Games and i can somewhat agree that the concept of The Brimstone Bleed is very similar to The Hunger Games but i like that they are similar as i enjoyed reading The Hunger Games and if that has somewhat inspired this book then great, i can read something similar with new characters,

Following on from the first installment which contained the first two obstacles of The Brimstone Bleed, Salt & Stone offers us the last two obstacles, the ocean challenge and the frost challenge. 

Tella, our main protagonist is beyond annoying and ive heard many people critisise this book as they find her too whiny. That is not my problem with her, i found her to be very realistic. As i once was a seventeen year old girl i can assert that she has the same attitude as most of us had at that age, she over-thinks everything especially when it comes to boys and she moans a lot about what our male protagonist Guy thinks of her but didnt we all at that age. Yes i agree that she is there to win the competition and obtain the cure so that her brother can live but shes still a teenager and allowances should be made for that. 

We also have an introduction of a few new characters as well as their pandoras. The first new character is the mysterious Cotton, a young handsome man who is described as 'in his 20's' at first i was getting love triangle vibes, the main thing i hate in YA is love triangles but alas one did not form, hes still a dark horse but for many other reasons and i dont want to give away spoilers in this review. We also have a new female character, Willow who is a young girl similar in age to existing character Olivia, which provides some nice comparisons of the two.

This sequel is just as action packed as its predecessor and with that comes deaths and even more plot twists. The book is left in such a way that definitely requires a sequel and ive read online that Victoria Scott has plans to write one but it is up to the publishers to pick it up. Fingers crossed.

I gave this one 4 out of 5 star on Goodreads.

Saturday, 14 March 2015

#8 Darkly Dreaming Dexter Book Review

Darkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff Lindsay 

Ive watched all the seasons of the TV show Dexter and ive had these books on my kindle since 2012 but for some reason ive been really hesitant to check them out just in case they were really different and i didn't like them. This review will mainly highlight the differences between the book and the show.

  • Firstly the character of Dexter is kept the exact same which i was pleased about, he is still a sociopath that struggles with putting on a 'normal' facade.
  • Deb's is the exact same in the show as well only perhaps a little more annoying in book form. Her constant reliance on Dexter to further her career reads as demanding and downright annoying! 
  • The character of Rudy from Season 1 who doubles as Deb's boyfriend who works in prosthetics  but also the brother that Dexter never knew about and the Ice Truck Killer. He isnt even referred to as The Ice Truck Killer!
  • The ending was completely different, La Guerta was killed off in the end of this story but im guessing she was a popular character and the producers made an executive decision to keep her. 
  • Dokes was ever present but wasnt as suspisious as he is in the show, he felt very side-lined in the book. Also Vince and Angel were not portrayed as well as they are in the show and they rarely appeared at all.
  • I was glad when they kept the character of Rita the same as for me, she is vital to the story.

All in all, i really enjoyed this. I gave this 4 out of 5 stars on  Goodreads. The only let downs were how annoying Deb's was and the little differences but i was already prepared for that as most tv adaptions are a little different and never fully stick to the story. 

This book made me want to re-watch season 1 of Dexter whilst simultaneously picking up the second book in the series. 

Monday, 9 March 2015

#7 Book Review- Fairest

Fairest by Marissa Meyer (The Lunar Chronicles #3.5)(Spoiler alert)

This is the much anticipated novella that depicts Levana's story, which is greatly needed to tide me over as the final book 'Winter' is not being released until November 2015.This novella also provides us with the first three chapters of Winter as bonus content. Firstly, the cover art and inside covers of this book are stunning, that alone makes me love this book! 

Before reading this i hated Levana which most people probably do as she is the antagonist of all three books in the series. Her back story has often been hinted at but theres never really been any light shed on why she is so evil. 

The first thing that intrigued me was the detailed history of Levana's sister, Channery. As Channery is the elder sibling she was first in line to inherit the throne. Levana sees her sisters disinterest in becoming queen and of making decisions on behalf of Luna. We already knew from the first three books that Levana is facially disfigured and uses her glamour to trick people into believing that she is beautiful. Fairest offers us an account of how she became facially disfigured, Channery tricked Levana into walking into a lit fire and she was left with burns. 

Channery is portrayed as quite promiscuous but at the same time she also knows the importance of marrying well in order to extend the throne. That said there was no upheaval when she became pregnant and had no idea who the father was. She later gives birth to a little girl, Princess Selene who we all now know as our much loved Cinder. When Channery dies when Selene/Cinder is one years old Levana is expected to take to the throne until the child is of age to become queen. During the first few months of Levana acting as queen she develops a taste for the power that comes with it, the thought of giving up the throne for Selene makes Levana plot to kill her. She glamours the nanny into starting a fire which results in Selene's 'death'. 

We also have the introduction of our newest character Winter. She is obviously the main protagonist in the upcoming book of the same name, which coincidentally will be the final installment to the series. Her story is an interesting one as Levana married or should i say tricked into marrying her father thus making Levana Winter's step mother. Winters birth mother died during labour. 

I think the point in which i felt sorry for Levana was when Channery constantly picked on her. She was lonely and friendless. Her only friend Winters father Sir Hayle she results into manipulating into marrying her even though she knows he will never love her. I couldn't help but feel that she was silly and made some poor choices. The only thing she had left was Luna and this is why she became the hated dictator that we all love to hate. 

I am beyond excited for Winter to come out! The first three chapters that were included as bonus content left me yearning for more! 

Tuesday, 3 March 2015

#6 All the bright places

All The Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

This story follows Finch and Violet. Two seventeen year olds with very different stories. The layout is dual perspective, which is fantastically fluid and gave great context to the issues surrounding both characters.

This novel headlines the issues surrounding mental health in teens which is such an important issue that is ignored in YA.

The importance of finding 'the bright places' was really prevelent throughout and how you shouldn't just go through life going through the motions. life is too short.

Violet is a survivor, in more ways than one. Without giving too much away she has dealt with the struggles of guilt and not feeling good enough. She loses who she is and i really empathized with her. Her voice was powerful and crucial within the YA genre.

Finch is slightly more complex. His story and reasonings unravel throughout the story and his issues are unclear until the last few chapters. I enjoyed the quirkiness of his character and thought he was the perfect counterpart to Violet.

I thought i would hate this story as i didnt like 'Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher' but i ended up enjoying it as it didn't romantisise suicide in the way i thought it might. It discussed the implications of suicide and the impact on those left behind. I did struggle to get into this at first as it was very teen angst but as the story goes on i fell in love with their personal stories and i became totally invested, which is a tribute to the writing style.

All in all this was pretty good and i enjoyed it, i didnt think it was like The Fault in Our Stars and Eleanor and Park as ive read both. This wasnt exactly original but it was cute and quirky.