31 January 2012


Author: Jeff Abbott
Series: No, standalone
UK Publisher: ATOM
UK Release date: December 2011
Genre: Thriller
Kindly given by the publisher for an honest review

Everything in 16 year old Evan Casher’s life has been a lie. And after a strange phone call from his mother, Evan’s life is irrevocably turned upside down. As he runs for his life from a dangerous criminal spy ring, he learns how much of his childhood was a web of lies and the truth behind his parents. But can a boy of light ever become a boy of shadows?

Review: True to its title, the fast paced and action packed plot instils a sense of panic and high energy. As soon as Evan goes on the run, everything is uncertain and unknown and I just wanted to race through the pages to see what plucky Evan would do next. There are so many twists, surprises, bluffs, double bluffs and back-stabbing, that it certainly will keep you on your toes and your head a-spinning with who’s doing what to whom.

The context for Panic revolves around the CIA, spies and internal espionage, making the danger feel very big and very real. It also felt like some sort of conspiracy theory about the US government that turns out be true. Different from other YA themes, Panic is much more like a grown-up crime thriller, only focused around a teenage boy.

Whilst I enjoyed reading Panic, there was something about some dialogue and behaviours that felt a little unnatural for the characters. I didn't really believe that a highly trained CIA operative would crack at the mere threat of danger, and although I don’t necessarily think violence is always needed or necessary, I think it would have made this character's reactions and choices more realistic.

When it came to new characters, the third person perspective did maintain a good degree of mystery. Rather than being an all-knowing narrative, you were still kept in the dark and I just didn’t know who was trustworthy, what was a lie, or what was the truth. This certainly added to the feeling of mistrust, suspicion, and fear, and made me empathise more with Ethan.

Evan was an interesting character because he changed and developed throughout the story. To start with he was very innocent and naive, not knowing who to trust or how to look after himself. But gradually his character developed until he was calling the shots. I liked Carrie too. Despite finding out that she hadn’t been truthful to Evan, I sympathised with her, for being used by so many people and not having a life of her own.

Panic is a fast and furious crime thriller, perfect for those that enjoy the excitement and suspense of a cat and mouse chase.

Rating: 4*

29 January 2012


In My Mailbox was started by the lovely Kristi over at Story Siren - check out her blog for more information on this meme.

I had to resist myself yesterday whilst book shopping, as this list could have easily been a lot longer, but I do really need to read the growing pile I already have! I am really excited to read these three though.


The Peculiars by Maureen Doyle McQuerry (via NetGalley)
Starters by Lissa Price (via NetGalley)
Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch (bought on the recommendation of Mithril Wisdom's excellent review!) 

What's in your mailbox this week?

28 January 2012


On My Wishlist is a fun weekly event hosted by Book Chick City and runs every Saturday. It's where you can list all the books you desperately want but haven't actually bought yet. They can be old, new or forthcoming.

My choices for this week are both already published, and one is a fantasy that you'll probably recognise - I keep saying I want to read more fantasy and yet this year I haven't read any! What do you think - do these books take your fancy?

Birthmarked by Caragh M O'Brien
Published March 2010 by Roaring Brook Press

In the Enclave, your scars set you apart, and the newly born will change the future. 

Sixteen-year-old Gaia Stone and her mother faithfully deliver their quota of three infants every month. But when Gaia's mother is brutally taken away by the very people she serves, Gaia must question whether the Enclave deserves such loyalty. A stunning adventure brought to life by a memorable heroine, this dystopian debut will have readers racing all the way to the dramatic finish.


Published 1996 by Voyager

Young Fitz is the bastard son of the noble Prince Chivalry, raised in the shadow of the royal court by his father's gruff stableman. He is treated like an outcast by all the royalty except the devious King Shrewd, who has him secretly tutored in the arts of the assassin. For in Fitz's blood runs the magic Skill--and the darker knowledge of a child raised with the stable hounds and rejected by his family. As barbarous raiders ravage the coasts, Fitz is growing to manhood. Soon he will face his first dangerous, soul-shattering mission. And though some regard him as a threat to the throne, he may just be the key to the survival of the kingdom.

27 January 2012


It's times like these when I wish I had a Smartphone, and not the most basic mobile in the world.

Because  Random House Children’s Books (RHCB) and Transworld Publishers (TWP) have teamed up with Aurasma, the world’s leading augmented reality platform, to bring bestselling authors Lauren Kate and Sophie Kinsella’s book jackets to life.

Which means once you've downloaded the free app onto your Smartphone then hold the device over the front cover of the book, the jacket images will come to life. That just sounds so cool!

To see the Aurasma-enabled Fallen In Love cover in action click here: http://youtu.be/adLu3aYF6UU

Special video messages from the author can also be viewed by ‘scanning’ the author photos on the book jackets. The app, which works on iPhone and Android Smartphones, as well as iPad 2 and iPod touch, uses Aurasma’s ‘virtual browser’ to recognise trigger images through the phone’s camera, which then generate video content directly onto the device’s screen.

Fans of Lauren Kate can download the FALLEN BOOKS app and bring the front cover of Fallen In Love to life. The SOPHIE KINSELLA app will activate Sophie Kinsella’s new novel I’ve Got Your Number.

Gavin Hilzbrich, Head of Digital Marketing at RHCB and TWP comments: “Increasingly our readers are looking for new ways to interact with authors and we’re always looking for innovative ways to market and enhance our publications. Innovation and development is at the heart of what we do and this project is an example of how we can use cutting edge mobile technology to engage our readers. We’re delighted with the outcome and have had a very positive reaction from retailers and have already set the wheels in motion for incorporating AR into future publications.”

Martina King, Managing Director of Aurasma said; “We are delighted to be working with two of the biggest publishing houses, Random House and Transworld Publishers, in the world’s first use of Aurasma on a book. Both Lauren Kate and Sophie Kinsella have millions of loyal followers around the world who we know will love to use their mobile devices to get closer to the story and their favourite authors. Aurasma offers readers the best of both worlds, bringing together the joy of owning a new book with the excitement of watching it come to life with digital content.”

Your thoughts? Do you like the idea of combining the traditional with new technology?

24 January 2012


Author: Kirsten Hubbard
Series: No, standalone
Publisher: Delacorte Books
Release date: March 2012
Genre: Contemporary, YA
Read via NetGalley

After finishing high school and breaking up with her boyfriend, Bria decides to rebel against everyone's expectations and travel to Central America on her own. Whilst trying to escape from the things that are holding her back, Bria meets Rowan who is also running from his past. Together they may just go on a journey of self-discovery and Wanderlove.

Review: Reading Wanderlove, I loved how genuine and true to real-life it was, and it took me straight back to my days backpacking. Bria's travels were filled with beauty, fears, danger, and discovery. As a newbie traveller, Bria gets off the plane in Central America wearing her waterproofs and surrounded by middle aged tourists which instantly makes her feel like a sore thumb and very uncool. You can tell that Hubbard has obviously travelled to these places, and she perfectly describes how it feels to land in and travel around a strange, exotic and unfamiliar country. The little lists and drawings that weaved in so well to the plot added realism, humour and insight into the characters.

I really liked and got Bria; I could relate to how Toby had taken over her life and after their break-up left her feeling like she had nothing left, not even art. She put their relationship as a couple first, above her own plans and dreams, to her own detriment. Although she was trying to hide from all of this, Bria still had the guts to go travelling, and face her fears. She was humorous and witty, her narrative reflecting her fears yet also slightly self-mocking at the same time.

Rowan was very mysterious, keeping his dark past hidden from Bria. But like Bria, he felt very real. I honestly wouldn't be surprised if there was a real-life Rowan scuba diving in Central America at this very moment. Rowan and Bria's friendly relationship frustrated and excited me at the same time; you could feel the tension and attraction there but both held back because of their own fears.

I wouldn’t say Wanderlove was fast paced and action packed, but for me that didn’t matter. The story flowed so well, the Central American backdrop absolutely captivated me, and I really wanted to see what happened to Bria (and Bria and Rowan).

Perfect for anyone who wants an insight into what it’s like backpacking or wants to re-live their own travels, you will be inspired you to grab your passport and head off to far flung places. Wanderlove is a great contemporary YA story with strong and real characters that touches on issues such as keeping your own sense of self in a relationship and the transformation of travelling.

Rating: 4*

22 January 2012


What with the retirement of Google's Friend Connect for non-blogger sites, I thought I would highlight where else you can find me. I have also finally set myself up on Networked blogs. You can now find me and My Book Journey here:


Please feel free to leave links to your blog, twitter and networkedblogs, and I will look you up :)

21 January 2012


On My Wishlist is a fun weekly event hosted by Book Chick City and runs every Saturday. It's where you can list all the books you desperately want but haven't actually bought yet. They can be old, new or forthcoming.

For some odd reason, which is purely coincidental, my choices for this week are all books out this month. What do you think - do these books take your fancy?

Cracked by K M Walton
Published January 2012 by Simon Pulse

Victor hates his life. He’s relentlessly bullied at school and his parents ridicule him for not being perfect. He’s tired of being weak, so he takes a bottle of his mother’s sleeping pills—only to wake up in the hospital.

Bull is angry, and takes all of his rage out on Victor. He’s the opposite of weak. And he’s tired of his grandfather’s drunken beatings, so he tries to defend himself with a loaded gun.

When Victor and Bull end up as roommates in the same psych ward, things go from bad to worse. Until they discover they might just have something in common: a reason to live.

The Feral Child by Che Golden
Published January 2012 by Quercus Publishing

'They take human children and leave changelings in their place... stolen children go into the mound and we can't follow.'

Her parents dead, Maddy is sick of living in Ireland, sick of Blarney and sick of her cousin Danny, one of the nastiest people you could meet this side of an Asbo. Mad as hell one evening, she crawls inside the grounds of the castle, the one place she has always been forbidden to go. Once inside, she is chased by a strange feral boy, who she suspects is one of the faerie: cruel, fantastical people who live among humans and exchange local children for their own.

When the boy returns to steal her neighbour Stephen into his world, Maddy and her cousins set off on a terrifying journey into a magical wilderness, determined to bring him back home. To do so, they must face an evil as old as the earth itself...

Che Golden has created a dashing adventure that interweaves Maddy's life in modern-day Ireland with a scintillating magical world.


The Book of Blood and Shadow by Robin Wasserman
Published January 2012 by Atom

It was like a nightmare, but there was no waking up. When the night began, Nora had two best friends and a boyfriend she adored. When it ended, she had nothing but blood on her hands. Chris was dead. Adriane couldn't speak. And Max, Nora's sweet, smart, soft-spoken Prince Charming, was gone. He was also-according to the police, according to her parents, according to everyone-a murderer. Desperate to prove his innocence, Nora's determined to follow the trail of blood, no matter where it leads. But Chris's murder is just one piece in a puzzle that spans continents and centuries. Solving it may be the only way she can save her own life.

20 January 2012


Strange Chemistry - the YA imprint of award-winning indie genre fiction publisher Angry Robot - has announced two deals that will help launch the list into publishing super-stardom. I can't wait for Strange Chemistry to launch, it's super exciting!

The imprint will launch in September 2012, and imprint editor Amanda Rutter has revealed that Strange Chemistry’s first two titles will be…

Shift by Kim Curran
When your average, 16-year old loser, Scott Tyler, meets the beautiful and mysterious Aubrey Jones, e learns he’s not quite so average after all. He’s a ‘Shifter’. And that means he has the power to undo any decision he’s ever made. At first, he thinks the power to shift is pretty cool. But as his world quickly starts to unravel around him he realises that each time he uses his power, it has consequences; terrible unforeseen consequences. Shifting is going to get him killed. In a world where everything can change with a thought, Scott has to decide where he stands. 

The first title – Shift – will be published in September of this year, with the second to follow in 2013.

Visit Kim online at http://www.kimcurran.co.uk/

Poltergeeks by Sean Cummings
Julie is an apprentice witch – or so she believes. When a dark power comes stalking out of the past to haunt her and her mother, Julie learns that she is far more than just a witch. With the help of her best friend Marcus and a rather unusual Great Dane, Julie has to race against time to ensure she can defeat the bad guy, save her mother and avoid being grounded – again! 

Amanda Rutter, says: “We have signed Sean for two novels in the Poltergeeks universe, the first to be published in October of this year with the second to follow in the summer of 2013.

Visit Sean online at www.sean-cummings.ca and www.darkcentralstation.com.

More information can be found at strangechemistrybooks.com and angryrobotbooks.com.

15 January 2012


Moon Spell
Author: Samantha Young
Series: Yes, #1
Publisher: Createspace
Release date: March 2011
Genre: YA, Paranormal

Caia has spent her life isolated from the other wolves in her pack, with no friends or family except Irini. When she returns to the pack, it is a to mixed welcome - not everyone is glad to see her back. She knows little of pack life and even less about her own family history, and no-one wants to tell her what secrets they are keeping. When her own powers threaten their safety, something must be done, and pack leader Lucien must decide how to protect Caia and his pack. 

Review: Moon Spell is the first in a series about the war between good and evil paranormals. Caia, a 17 year old girl that is part of a werewolf pack, is stuck in the middle of the war although she has no idea why. Caia is a very likeable protagonist because she’s got that kind of balance I love between being humble and being caring and also being able to stand up for herself. Mostly this is with Lucien, pack leader and alpha male, which leads to some tense but physically charged encounters between them. The suspense of when they might actually get together was superb and one of my favourite parts of the book!

The story was written from the dual perspective of both Caia and pack leader Lucien. I have to admit I love reading about the guy’s perspective and in this case it really helped me understand the feelings, emotions and dilemmas behind Lucien’s reactions. Although Caia can pick up other people’s emotions and we can get a little insight into other characters during her narrative, there was the benefit of hearing his internal struggle between wanting to protect and be with Caia whilst needing to maintain status as aplha. Without this Lucien may have come across as a chauvinistic arse, but in reality he makes a great male lead, being strong, protective, physically domineering and yet vulnerable.

My one niggle were the few occasions when the flashbacks felt a little like information dumps, to catch us up on the pack history, world building and Caia's past. Although the information was really needed to help understand the context to how the pack lives and why certain prejudices exist, it still felt a little dry and awkward.

For what I understand is a self-published book, Samantha Young has done a great job. The writing and elaborate world building are fab, feeling fresh and exciting despite being about werewolves and witches, and the plot leaves so many questions and possibilities.

Ideal for fans of werewolf and paranormal romances, Moon Spell is fast paced and action packed with strong characters and a fiery romance.

Rating: 4*

14 January 2012


On My Wishlist is a fun weekly event hosted by Book Chick City and runs every Saturday. It's where you can list all the books you desperately want but haven't actually bought yet. They can be old, new or forthcoming.

My choices for this week are a mixture of old and new. What do you think - do these books take your fancy?

The Heir of Night by Helen Lowe
To be published January 19th 2012 by Orbit (this book is already out, but I love this new version cover coming out this month)

If Night falls, all fall . . .

In the far north of the world of Haarth lies the bitter mountain range known as the Wall of Night. Garrisoned by the Nine Houses of the Derai, the Wall is the final bastion between the peoples of Haarth and the Swarm of Dark—which the Derai have been fighting across worlds and time.

Malian, Heir to the House of Night, knows the history of her people: the unending war with the Darkswarm; the legendary heroes, blazing with long-lost power; the internal strife that has fractured the Derai's former strength. But now the Darkswarm is rising again, and Malian's destiny as Heir of Night is bound inextricably to both ancient legend and any future the Derai—or Haarth—may have.


Hemlock by Kathleen Peacock
To be published May 2012 by HarperCollins

Mackenzie and Amy were best friends. Until Amy was brutally murdered.

Since then, Mac’s life has been turned upside down. She is being haunted by Amy in her dreams, and an extremist group called the Trackers has come to Mac’s hometown of Hemlock to hunt down Amy’s killer: A white werewolf.

Lupine syndrome—also known as the werewolf virus—is on the rise across the country. Many of the infected try to hide their symptoms, but bloodlust is not easy to control.

Wanting desperately to put an end to her nightmares, Mac decides to investigate Amy’s murder herself. She discovers secrets lurking in the shadows of Hemlock, secrets about Amy’s boyfriend, Jason, her good pal Kyle, and especially her late best friend. Mac is thrown into a maelstrom of violence and betrayal that puts her life at risk.

Kathleen Peacock’s thrilling novel is the first in the Hemlock trilogy, a spellbinding urban fantasy series filled with provocative questions about prejudice, trust, lies, and love.


The Hedgewitch Queen by Lilith Saintcrow
Published December 2011 by Orbit

Vianne di Rocancheil is a lady waiting at the Court of Arquitaine, where she studies her books, watches for intrigue, and shepherds her foolhardy Princesse through the glittering whirl. Court is a sometimes-unpleasant waltz, especially for the unwary, but Vianne treads its measured steps well.

Unfortunately, the dance has changed. Treachery is afoot in gilded and velvet halls. A sorcerous conspiracy is unleashed, with blood, death, and warfare close behind. Vianne must flee, carrying the Great Seal of Arquitaine with her. This is the one thing the conspirators need to rule, and they won’t rest until they have it. A life of dances, intrigues, and fashion has not prepared Vianne for this. Nor has it prepared her for Tristan d’Arcenne, Captain of the King’s Guard and player in the most dangerous games conspiracy can devise. Yet to save her country and avenge her Princesse, Vianne will become what she must and do whatever is required.

A Queen can do no less.

12 January 2012


India Dark
Author: Kirsty Murray
Series: No, standalone
UK Publisher: Templar
UK Release date: 5th January 2012
Genre: Historical
Kindly given by the publisher for an honest review

It was 1909 when Posey Swift left Australian shores to tour America with the Lilliputian troupe, filled with dreams of singing and dancing her way across the country. But as funds run low and the Lilliputian group detours across South East Asia, the children find themselves fighting against the company owner Mr Arthur. How far will the children go to protect their rights, their freedom and get back home?

Review: Based on a true story, India Dark is set in a time when travel to different countries was limited to the rich or the British Empire army, and encounters with people of different cultures and heritages was rare. For the children in the Lilliputian dance and musical theatre troupe, their travels to South-East Asia and India open their eyes to different worlds, and the narrative has been written to encapsulate this and ensnare the reader’s senses and bring alive a land of foreign and beautiful wonders. The harsh treatment of the children did impinge on my enjoyment of the country’s wonders but it made me understand why many of the children began to hate certain parts of India, associating them with maltreatment and negative experiences.

The story is told from two perspectives: Posey Swift, a young and naive girl of 13 who is making her first journey with the Lilliputians, and 15 year old Tilly Sweetrick, who is much more world-wise and on her second tour. I liked Tilly because she was transparent in what she wanted, and saw people for what they really were, but she verged on manipulative and harsh. On the other hand, Posey was just so sweet and innocent, but didn’t realise what was going on around her or how her behaviour might affect others. Although it could be a little confusing trying to keep up with whose narrative I was reading, I think the story benefited hugely from the dual perspective. The fact that the two girls had different experiences of the tour and were completely different characters, helped me see what happened from different viewpoints and sympathise with different characters.

Like Posey, I fell for Charlie, as his interest in magic and the Indian fakirs (magicians) was really exciting. Reading about the illusions with mango trees growing on stage felt so magical, and I could see why he was entranced by the mysterious of India. He was also able to stay out of the fights and seemed wise beyond his years. The fact that he would dress like the locals and sneak out to see the real India was very courageous and rebellious (for a boy of 13), and I really admired that in him.

Starting in the courtroom, the story jumps back to before the children set off on their long journey, and follows them as things go from bad to worse. The plot was filled with lies, deception, excitement, suspense, drama, upsets and fighting, and throughout there was an underlying feeling of dread at what might happen to the children. Although the story slowed towards the end, I still wanted to know what happened to the cruel Mr Arthur and how the children were affected by their experiences in the troupe. The story most certainly touches on the children's loss of innocence and it feels such a shame and a crime, that the amazing adventure for the children turns so sour.

This captivating historical story will take you back to a different era and completely immerse you in the travels and troubles that happen on tour. Kirsty Murray has done a great job bringing the childrens' tale to life!

Rating: 4*

Templar Publishing are kindly allowing me to give a brand spanking new copy of India Dark away! All you have to do is fill out the very simple form below :)

This giveaway is for UK entrants only.
Winners will be picked using random.org, contacted by email and have 48 hours to get back to me or a new winner will be chosen.
I can't be held responsible for items lost/damaged in the mail.
Giveaway ends 22nd January 2012 (UK time).
One entry per person.
You don't need to be a follower, but it's always appreciated :)

To enter:
Fill out THE FORM below!

10 January 2012


Author: Kiersten White
Series: Yes, #2
UK Publisher:
UK Release date: 5th January 2012
Genre: YA, Paranormal
Kindly given by the publisher for an honest review

After breaking free from the IPCA, Evie and Lend now share a normal teenage life together; studying, working part-time, and having each other as boyfriend and girlfriend. But for Evie, the transition hasn’t been easy, and she craves some paranormal action in her somewhat boring life. So when Raquel offers her the opportunity to help tag and bag bad paranormal Evie jumps at the chance, even if it means working with the energetic Jack. However Evie finds herself sinking into trouble as more and more fae find her, and as she hides more and more things from Lend.

Review: For some reason it took me a while to get into this second book of the series; probably because it had been so long since I read the first one that I couldn’t actually remember what had happened. Once I did get back into it though, I remembered what was so enjoyable about Paranormalcy. Evie is witty, funny, endearing, and in this book walking a thin line between good girl and bad girl. Her desire for a normal life has come true - she goes to high school and works at a diner - but having always lived outside of normal society, she just can’t get used to it. As she tries to figure out who she is and what her life is about, she ends up lying, running off, getting herself in sticky situations, and being tempted by the souls of others.

I have to admit, I would have liked to have seen more of Lend. Typical good guy, he is endlessly patient and forgiving. I would love to see both him and Evie getting up to some adventures together, and see their relationship tested a bit more without him always being so forgiving.

In Supernaturally, we get to see more types of paranormals. I really like the idea that there is so much hidden out there in Evie’s world that even Evie doesn’t know about. Meeting these paranormals with Evie is really interesting and special in some strange way, although often they aren’t as nice as could be. This array of paranormal characters that White has created and the fact that they aren’t always what they seem highlights that life isn’t clear cut black or white. For me it also presented an interesting dilemma when I came across a new character, as I started becoming suspicious of everyone’s actions and motives. I’m still not sure what to make of some characters who appear to be up to no good, but hopefully all will be revealed in Endlessly.

Although I could kind of guess what was going on overall, the plot was still exciting and intriguing. White is good at end-of-chapter cliffhangers, which are thrilling and make me want to keep reading! This book did focus a lot on how Evie dealt with her new life, and at some points I did want to shake her for not appreciating what she had but I guess her behaviour was natural for a teenager that hasn’t really lived a normal life. I am really keen to see where the story goes next, as there is a lot of scope for things to develop with the fae as well as with Vivian who is currently and permanently asleep.

Supernaturally incorporates humour and wit, plenty of captivating and mystifying paranormal characters, journeys into the fairy world, and some much loved bleeping.

Rating: 4*

8 January 2012


In My Mailbox was started by the lovely Kristi over at Story Siren - check out her blog for more information on this meme. IMM this week, or should I say, this Christmas period I've got a few books that I've bought. Even though I prefer reading a proper book, I couldn't resist some Kindle bargains...

Moon Spell by Samantha Young (bought)
Ondine: The Summer of Shambles by Ebony McKenna (bought)
Wither by Lauren DeStefano (bought)
Desert Angel by Charlie Price (kindly sent by Random House)
Well-Tempered Clavicle by Piers Anthony (kindly sent by Tor/Forge)

What's in your mailbox this week?

4 January 2012


Author: Megan Miranda
Series: No, standalone
UK Publisher: Bloomsbury
UK Release date: 5th January 2012
Genre: YA
Kindly given by the publisher for an honest review

Eleven minutes might as well be eternity underwater. It only takes three minutes without air for loss of consciousness. Permanent brain damage begins at four minutes. And then, when the oxygen runs out, full cardiac arrest occurs. Death is possible at five minutes. Probable at seven. Definite at ten. Delaney Maxwell was underwater for eleven minutes. And she’s alive.

Review: I just loved Fracture and couldn’t put it down - so much so that I read it in one day despite working a full 8 hours, because I couldn’t go to sleep without finishing it. There's something about a good book that actually makes it hard for me to write a review, because I don't scrutinise the plot or characters or wonder what's going on; I just get drawn straight in and plough my way through the story. But I do love finding books like Fracture that just work, that seem to be written so naturally and fluidly it’s as if the book has been plucked straight from the author’s (or even character's) head. And I was completely caught up in Delaney’s ‘return’ to life and miraculous survival.

The plot and characters really kept me engaged and on my toes, as the story turned and twisted with suspense and intrigue. Delaney's persistence to prove that you could make a difference to other people's lives really endearing and the different relationships she had with Decker and Troy was fascinating; the first being the neighbour and best of friends, and the latter being mysterious guy in town who shared something so unusual and personal with Delaney.

For me, what really makes a story and its characters are the little details. In Fracture, these very typical, normal behaviours and thoughts added real human touches and made Delaney feel so natural and genuine to me. Her thoughts and questions about life and death were natural for her situation, but as a reader they also made me think about what I would do if I had one day left to live, and the unfairness of why some people die young, some survive and others live long into old age. Despite having a paranormal element the story felt so realistic, weaving Delaney's gift seamlessly into the other worrisome areas of her teenage life.

Blending paranormal elements with romance, mystery and intriguing characters, Megan Miranda really nailed her debut novel. I can't wait to see what she produces next. As a start to 2012 releases, it couldn't be better!

Rating: 5*

Find out more about Megan on Twitter or her webpage. There will also be exciting competitions and news on the Fracture Facebook page throughout January. Make sure you ‘like’ it to keep up-to-date.

And if you can't get enough, here is the trailer...

3 January 2012


Set for release on the 1st May 2012, the sequel to the ground breaking Divergent is set to be one of the most anticipated books of the year. HarperCollins have now exclusively revealed the fabulous cover look for Insurgent. This fantastic new cover will tie in with the new look for the paperback of Divergent, due for release on the 2nd February 2012. 

Personally I cannot wait for Insurgent to come out!

2 January 2012


Stolen Away
Author: Alyxandra Harvey
Series: No, standalone
UK Publisher: Bloomsbury
UK Release date: 5th January 2012
Genre: Faery, YA
Kindly given by the publisher for an honest review

For seventeen years, Eloise Hart had no idea the world of Faery even existed. Now she has been abducted and trapped in the Rath of Lord Strahan, King of Faery. Strahan was only meant to rule for seven years, as Faery tradition dictates, and then give up his crown to another. But he won't comply, and now chaos threatens both worlds.

The only one who can break his stranglehold on the Faery court is his wife. . . Eloise's aunt Antonia. Using Eloise to lure Antonia, Strahan captures his wife, desperate to end the only threat to his reign. Now Eloise must become the rescuer. Together with her best friends Jo and Devin, she must forge alliances with other Fae, including a gorgeous protector named Lucas, and Strahan's mysterious son, Eldric-who may or may not betray them.

Review: When Stolen Away landed on my doormat I was first taken by the stunning cover. Then I read the blurb: "Anyone who has swooned over David Bowie in Labyrinth, Viggo Mortensen in Lord of the Rings or Tom Cruise in Legend will love the heroes and villains in this book". And I knew I would have to read this one straight away.

The story was told from the dual narrative of Eloise and Jo, best friends but very different characters. I wasn't expecting this and found it a little surprising, but I did like both of them but for different reasons: Eloise is down to earth, into rockabilly, and learning to stand up for herself, whilst extrovert and flirty Jo finds herself falling for one mysterious guy. I think my favourite was Jo's narrative because it was filled with heart-quickening seduction and some steamy chemistry. The fact that Jo and Eldric's relationship was forbidden only made their meetings even hotter! Jo's friendship with the little fairy was also really sweet and I liked the two of them paired together, being both sassy and caring towards each other.

In terms of the plot, it was fairly simple but still intriguing with twists and mystery strewn in. When the book finished I was disappointed, because I wanted to read more and see what else might happen.

One thing I couldn't fail to notice was how captivating the faery world was. Every sense was appealed to; colours dazzled, sounds floated on the air...well, you get the picture. This sensory style of writing really brought the strange world to life and made it feel so magical. The fact that this is juxtaposed against the constant threat of Lord Strahan and the Cold Ladies, also made the Faery world feel foreign and dangerous.

Stolen Away is a quick, light, easy read that captivates your mind, quickens your pulse and enchants your senses. Look out for this one in January!

Rating: 4*