Thursday, 31 January 2013

Goodreads THRONE OF GLASS Fanclub!

Did you enjoy Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas?

The 'Throne of Glass Fan Club' is the one and only Goodreads group to discuss the masterpiece that is  Throne of Glass. Romance, mystery and fantasy combine in a story with a feisty and witty heroine, new friendships to be formed and an adventure unlike any other!

Discuss the books and possible future plots, participate in roleplays and stay up to date on news to do with the series. 

To join in the fun or check it our click HERE

Drama & Angel Action ~ Boundless (Unearthly #3) Review

Boundless (Unearthly #3)
By Cynthia Hand

Rating: 3

'"How did your date-" she starts to ask, then gets a look at my face. "Oh. It didn't go well."

"No, it didn't go well," I say, kicking off my shoes and lying on my back on the bed.

She shrugs. 
"If we can send one man to the moon, why can't we send them all there?" she says.'

In which I discover that cliches do exist, as do exceptions to every rule...and girls always pick the guy they can't be with.

Because the females of the fictional world seem to be lacking in logic. 

But they make up for a lack of logic with enough scruples, near-death experiences, daddy-mummy issues, conflicted pasts and plain old everyday drama to fill a land fill. 

So you see that our lovely angelic girl-wonder has come back from a trip abroad. And you're now thinking that this sounds great, right? 


Because as you continue into this book, you will be constantly wishing that Cynthia Hand had spent 438 pages describing Clara's Italian Holiday, than describing Clara's American Love-wreck.

So, as expected, Christian appears all:

And damn, that boy could make hippy clothes look good. He's so sweet, kind, thoughtful and downright adorable, and Clara as per usual is...



- First World Problems Tucker
- Emotional imbalance Tucker
- Lack of ice cream Tucker
- Titanic re-run Tucker
- PMS Tucker

Nevermind that Christian basically puts everything on hold to be with her, make her happy, protect her and be the man at her side. 

Clara likes guys who feel sick at the sight of her (literally, btw - her glory stuff makes Tucker queasy). She loves men who could possibly get killed if they hang out with her, and that aren't going to live for as long as she will...and like horses. 

Now, I'm a bit of a horse girl myself (and Tucker is basically a hot, strapping ranch-raised lad right off The Saddle Club) but even I can take a hint when everything is shouting at me that you and this boy aren't meant to be together, gurl!

If Clara was sane me, she would have realised that Tucker's 'edgy-bad-ass-I-hate-you-leave-me-alone' act is just act. He's trying to play hard to get! 

And it doesn't help your 'women's lib' goals when you teleport over to the guy's house. By 'accident'. Really, Clara? You're going to go with the whole 'I just tripped over your barn whilst coasting through cyberspace' angle? 

And like Tucker could stay grumpy at her for that long. The guy's a teddy bear. He's totally putting on an act and Clara - she fell for it hook, line and sinker.

Actually, back to Clara for a sec, and her constantly mentioned 'women's liberation' attitude...

Uh, where is it exactly?!

Christian mentions that he's paying for dinner and a movie, and for that she should let him even though he knows she wants to be an 'independent woman'. 

Nope. No feminism here.

Clara is mulling over her relationships (note the plural, because she is so, so clingy) and then berates herself for not being more 'women's lib' on the issue.

Nope. No feminism here.

Clara's daddy teaches her to swordfight. So she can defend herself!

Hmm. Maybe a little here. But Clara's skills are limited to skewering BBQ meat.

Clara doesn't need no man. *finger snaps*

She can talk on the phone!

Eat ice-cream all alone!
Watch movies on her own-

Wait a second...she wants to call Christian over for company...hang on, Tucker's at the door! Wait, wait! She's stuffed up everything and needs both of them to help her!

So much for that.

Clara. Is. Annoying.

Which is the biggest shame.

I mean, I loved Clara in the other two books. But from book two to book three, for me, it felt like she needed to seriously sort out her priorities. 

Yeah, her life's hard. But she needs to stop abusing what she has. 

For e.g., her brother comes to see her after chucking a disappearing act. Yep. Go ahead Clara. Yell and scream at him. That'll work! 

No wonder he left! Clara tries so hard to be in charge that she alienates other people. 

She makes decision on behalf of Christian. Important decisions. Life or death kind of decisions. She has an on-off relationship with Tucker that she controls whether it's on or off.

And her treatment of Christian can be summed up as so: manipulation.

Why? Because it just is.

Because the poor guy risks everything.

  • The dude goes out of his way.
  • He protects her.
  • Loves her.
  • Saves her.
  • Worries over her.
  • Is by her side 24/7.
  • Never ever leaves her when she needs him.
  • Aids her.
  • Would follow her to hell.

And yet...and yet...she never ever says: "Look, Christian, I really love Tucker and I think it's going to be hard for forget him. If possible, can we please still be friends. I don't want you getting the wrong idea, or feel like I'm leading you on or anything. You're important to me and I couldn't make it through half these obstacles without you. But I love Tucker. Even though we're over."

Instead, she allows him to take her on dates, to near-kiss her, to feel as if he has a chance...! 

When she's secretly teleporting into Tucker's barn ('by accident'), pining over Tucker, crying over Tucker, dreaming about Tucker...I could go on. 

But I won't. 

Because I am now quivering with indignation over Clara's treatment of Christian! 

I need another book. 

You know...when Tucker's dead out of the picture and Clara is maturer than she is now and Christian is able to have his knight-in-shining-armour moment. 

I'm not going to tell you who she chooses (of if she finally chooses), but what I will say is that this book could have been brilliant if Clara had developed more as a character. 

The signs of development were there, the plot developed (really well too, actually) and the other characters developed (NB: Christian, Angela, Jeffrey). 

But Clara still needed a bit more...something. I can't put it into words. 

That something was there - when she used her glory sword on a very, very bad fallen angel who shall remain nameless so this isn't too spoiler-ish - but it needed to have appear more often, in my opinion.

So if you like sappy love triangles, angel action and 'accidents' Boundless is bound to have you awash in cheesy literary glory from start to finish.

Saturday, 26 January 2013

Mafia Madness: Birthright Book 2 Review

Because It Is My Blood (Birthright, #2) 

Rating: 4.9

"'The trees were about twice the height of the workers who tended them. For grooming the trees, the men used flat swords that were over a foot long.
"They're pruning the trees," Theo informed me.
"What do you call the tool they're using?" I asked.
"A machete."
"I thought those were used for killing people," I said.
"Si, I am told they are good for that, too."'

Some people's family problems come from money, power struggles, history. Anya's come from chocolate.

Anya Balanchine's family's involvement in chocolate goes way back. But in a dystopian world where chocolate is an illegal substance, her family name is drenched in infamy. Anya is determined to have a chocolate-free future, to be a model citizen and avoid the conflicts of the year behind her. But like any chocolate lover knows, sooner or later you're back for more. And with Anya, it's in her blood.

'"I hate chocolate," I whispered.
Simon Green put his hand on my shoulder. "Don't say that , Anya," he said gently.
"Why shouldn't I? It's brown, ugly, altogether aesthetically unappealing. it's unhealthy, addictive, illegal. It's bitter when it's good and too sweet when it's cheap. I can't honestly understand why anyone bothers with the stuff. If I woke up tomorrow and the world had no chocolate in it, I would be a happier person."

Debts must be paid, families must be kept safe, a society must be straightened and decisions must be made. Anya's journey will take her to places close to home, and across the oceans, but it will ultimately lead to her final decision: whether to be a true Balanchine, or to put her history behind her

Rippers and Tea Cups - The Name of the Star

The Name of the Star (Shades of London #1)
By Maureen Johnson

Rating: 4.7


A big thanks to Genie, my wonderful friend, for recommending this book to me. From the very first page of The Name of The Star - with its teenage American narration, quirky references and lots of laughs - I was caught up in this whirlwind of a tale. A tale about a girl named Rory, who went to an English boarding school...unaware that Jack the Ripper (or his mimicker) was on the loose again, bloodying the streets of London.

The book starts off, and you assume that it is firmly grounded in reality - quite Agatha Christie-like, really - but then your entire perception of the novel is shaken up halfway through, as the whole affair becomes eerie, deadly and maybe even paranormal. I love that Maureen chose Jack the Ripper, linking history with the 21st century and appealing to the reader's funny bone was well as the part of them that shelters their darkest fears. 

One of the most resonating bits, for me, was when Stephen told of his suicide experience. The details, the sent shivers down my spine and I couldn't believe how accurate all these descriptions were - of love, attraction, fear, misery, boredom...all the emotions in this book were raw, real and spot on. 

Maureen transports the story to your doorstep; frighting-ly close, so that you can almost feel Jack's breath upon your neck...

Dark Stars In the Night Sky - Rosie Black Chronicles End On a High Note!

Dark Star (Rosie Black Chronicles #3)
By Lara Morgan

Rating: 5

'“Well, they asked for it," Essie said. "People should learn not to mess with the Black women.”'

(And one more quote because I love Pip:))

'“Rosie, it's okay, it's me."
She knew that voice. She pulled the hand off her mouth.
He let her go and she spun around.
He smiled, blue eyes glinting. "Surprise."
For a second she was too stunned to move, then she threw her arms around his neck and hugged him tight, almost knocking him off balance.

Lara Morgan makes me so proud to be Australian! As everyone knows, us Australians are:

And our authors are no exception to that! The latest, and final, novel in the 'Rosie Black Chronicles' is a fast-paced adventure - a race against time to save the world as we know it, five hundred years into the future.

Rosie is an amazing heroine. The word 'strong' doesn't even come close to describing her - the girl has to live with that horrid implant thing in her brain which means constant pain 24/7, plus she gets tortured, plus she's trying to save her loved ones and on top of everything else the world is in danger and she has the information to either save or destroy it.

No pressure.

Highlights and thoughts:
- Pip was so adorable I wanted to hug him...or kiss him. But Rosie got there first :(
- Aunt Essie is a psycho and bad-ass as hell, and I love her for it!
- Riley was as useful as sand in the desert. In other words...he wasn't.
- Dalton has daddy issues. BIG daddy issues. Like my-dad-is-evil-holy-shit-I-think-he-killed-my-bro issues.
- Cassie isn't really an ice princess. Really. She's just a tad bitchy, self-absorbed and misunderstood.
- Alpha wasn't a wolf. He was a guy. With guns at his disposal, but I thought the name 'Alpha' summoned too much expectation in the readers. The guy was a loser. His name should have been 'Beta'!
- Did I mention that Pip's worrying over Rosie was adorable?
- Pip's smile. We need a blog, a Tumblr or just a website devoted to Pip's smile.
- Pip's blue eyes. A website is also called for.
- Pip's 'I'm-too-goodlooking-when-angry' moments. 
- Pip. Pip. Pip.

A side note: Pip and beautiful boys FINALLY make peace!! 
It was so cute - no spoilers, don't worry - but when they finally see eye-to-eye, I was waiting for them to have a bro-to-bro hug, or something, but the situation was kinda awkward to say the least:

I'm so sad that the series has come to an end!! But what an amazing journey it has been. One I, certainly, will never forget and I thank Lara over and over again for the masterpiece she has created and the colourful cast of characters that will inspire and enchant readers for generations to come :D

Quick Review ~ Leaving Paradise by Simon Elkeles

Leaving Paradise (Leaving Paradise #1)
By Simon Elkeles

Rating: 4.7 

"When I look back down at my hand covering hers, I'm grateful she hasn't come to her senses and pulled away. 

As if she knows my thoughts, we both turn our hands at the same time so our hands are palm against palm...finger against finger. Her hand is dwarfed against mine. It makes her seem more delicate and petite than I'd realize. 

I feel a need to protect her and be her champion should she ever need one.

With a slight shift of my hand, I lace my fingers through hers.

I'm holding hands. 

With Maggie Armstrong."

You know your Monday night is going downhill when you're stuck weeping over a cliffhanger.

I mean, this is the last straw in the haystack. The last chocolate in the box. The icing on the cake. The hole in the piƱata!

I get that there will be cliffhangers. What I don't get is why only I ever seemed to be constantly plagued by them! Four out of five times, a book I will pick up will go something like this:

Book: Introducing a delicious guy character with soulful eyes and a great sense of humour
Book: Ooh look - heroine with a backbone! 
Book: Her and the guy aren't getting along...obviously this means they are meant for each other!
Book: Insert awesome situations that make you wish you had this life
Book: *Spend several moments sniffling over your sad, lonely life*
Book: Break up and cry in the rain scene
Book: Stop listening to Taylor Swift on repeat and watch as they mope for days
Book: Back together again! Par-tay!
Book: Things are looking good
Book: They may even become a couple
Book: He told her he loves her!! *throws confetti*
Book: But hang on...
Book: Wait-
Book: And she's going to tell him she - oh, wait, he's leaving. Sike!
Book: Acknowledgements (where the author will proceed to shower you with the number of dogs they have, a bunch of adjectives describing their editing staff and the name of their favourite chocolate brand).

Dear authors - us readers hate cliffhangers!

I mean, have you ever met one reader that thanked an author for giving them a cliffhanger?! 

Cliffhangers are like smoking. Or parachuting without a parachute. 

They cause the following things:
- Heart palpitations
- Sobbing
- Crying
- Pain
- Sniffling
- Pain
- Swooning
- Incoherent screaming (e.g. "OH THE FEELS!", "WHY?!", "WHAT IS THIS?!")
- Throwing of objects and people

- The capitalisation of words
- Incoherent ranting- Pain
- More pain
- Endless pain

So yep. 

I have finished my rant. 

You may now leave...wiser and stronger! (And most likely weirded out XD)

Quick Picks ~ Endgame by Nenia Campbell

Endgame (Voluntary Eradicators #1)
By Nenia Campbell

Rating: 4.8

“Crazy people always think they're perfectly sane. It's what makes them so crazy; their entire delusion lies within the fact that they believe they aren't deluded.”

My thoughts on the book:

Umm, I think I may be suffering from cliffhanger shock.

Because there is no way that is the end of this book.

I mean (*hyperventilating*) who would end a book like that? Who would torture their readers in such a way?!

Nenia, of course! *takes hat off to Nenia*

Taking readers on a mental - and emotional - adventure, with enough kick-ass-ery to make a COD (Call of Duty) fan happy, Nenia Campbell has created a world unlike any other. 

With more twists than Inception, Vol's story will make you laugh, wince, tear up and fan yourself repeatedly (Catan is one serious rogue, ladies!). It will resonate with you. It will have you wanting more. 

It will have you trapped in a deviant game of your own making as you struggle to tell the difference between sanity and insanity, bravery and stupidity, right and wrong and real and not real.

This book made me wish that people like Nenia were in charge of running the world.

Can you imagine getting to 'physically' be inside a game? Mario Kart would be wicked. I would be blue-bombing the hell out of everyone and breaking the speed limit three times over!! 

Moving on...

Another perk of this book: Nenia is not stingy with her vocab!

Because, everyone, the English language is a beautiful, beautiful thing. Use it. Stop using 'like', 'whatever' and 'YOLO'. 

Use words like: m

Do you know what that word means? It means: 'a name'. 
That's right. I know, I'm speechless too. 

Challenge: use 'moniker' in a sentence today - come on, I dare you!

Nenia is a vocab goddess...and she makes readers want to pursue a career in professional gaming.

Conclusion to my errant rambling: Please read this marvellous book because it is awesome, you will like it and if you don't like it for the plot, heroine or vocab, just read it for Catan ;)
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