Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Review: No and Me by Delphine de Vigan

No and Me by Delphine de Vigan 
Published: March 16th, 2010 (originally published August 22nd, 2007)
Publisher: Bloomsbury (originally published by Jean-Claude Lattès)
Pages: 256
Source: For review from Mostly Reading YA
Challenge: 100+ Reading Challenge
Other: Translated from French. Won the YALSA Best Fiction award for YA Readers in 2011.
Buy the book: Bookdepository

At thirteen-years-old, with an unusually high IQ and a knack for observing things about other people, Lou Bertignac is not only the youngest in her class at school; she is also the most unusual. Painfully shy, she has few friends, save for Lucas, whose company helps her get through each day. At home, Lou's life is also difficult: Her mother hasn't left the house in years and her father spends his days crying in the bathroom. Lou's world is dark and sad... That is, until she meets No.

No is a teenage girl that Lou befriends for the purpose of her school project on homelessness. Despite the different worlds that these two girls come from, a friendship is soon forged between them. Unable to bear the thought of No not having a home or a family to keep her safe, Lou persuades her reluctant parents into letting her new friend stay with the Bertignac family. No's addition to the household forces Lou and her parents to face the sadness that has been enveloping them for so long — but not without some disruptions along the way.

Lou is a thirteen year-old girl with an IQ of 160 and a habit of comparing and observing things, looking for connections. She's a loner at school, only befriending Lucas, who is the complete opposite of her: he's tall, cool and popular, while Lou is small and overlooked. Then Lou meets No. No is a teenage girl who lives out on the street. She agrees to do an interview with Lou for her assignment on the homeless and they become friends. Eventually, Lou asks her parents to take No in. They do. And it changes their lives.

The book starts out by telling about Lou, who is very smart, and her broken family. Her father works hard, but cries in the bathroom when he thinks Lou isn't listening, and her mother hasn't left the house in years. All because of a terrible loss that they never learnt to deal with five years ago. Lou is shy and keeps to herself, until she meets homeless No at a station. They talk and agree to meet again later on. This is how their relationship is born - I wouldn't go as far as calling it a friendship already. Eventually, Lou asks her parents if No can come and live with them because she hates the idea of No suffering from the cold while they have a room to spare.

They take in No and at first it seems to be working. Everything seems to be going fine: her mother starts to pick up her life again and they are really like a little family with the four of them. But underneath the surface, other things are brewing and everything's not so perfect.

This book had me thinking about the story for several days. While reading it, it took me some time to get into it. But when I did, I was intrigued by the mysterious friendship that was building. Lou was working really hard to make live easier for No. You can take a girl off the streets, but can you get the streets out of the girl?

The translator left several errors in the book, which bothered me when I saw them. But other than that, I really liked reading this book. It wasn't exactly written in chapters, it appeared to me that it was written in flashes of how Lou experienced things and I liked reading it that way.

No and Me was unlike every other book I've ever read. Because of the plot and the issue of the homeless, but also because of the not-so standard plot and because it made me think for several days.

My overall rating:

Four stars for No and Me: A touching story

Sunday, May 29, 2011

In My Mailbox (31)

Another Sunday, another In My Mailbox! In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi over at The Story Siren where we show what bookish things we got this week. I had a good week again! Well, actually, every week when I get books is a good week, don't you think? Lol. Here's my IMM vlog for this week!

So happy with my books! Unfortunately two came in damaged, but everything worked out. I love the great customer service at Amazon and Bookdepository!

What did you get in your mailbox this week? Happy reading!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Review: Definitely Dead by Charlaine Harris

Definitely Dead by Charlaine Harris
Published: May 2nd, 2006
Publisher: Gollancz
Pages: 324
Challenge: 100+ Reading Challenge
Other: Sixth book in the Sookie Stackhouse series. There are currently 11 books in the series, with one more being published in the future. The eleventh installment, Dead Reckoning, was published on May 3rd, 2011.
Buy the book: Bookdepository

In the saga's sixth installment, Definitely Dead, telepathic Louisiana barmaid Sookie Stackhouse finds out jaw-dropping information about her first love, 130-something vampire Bill Compton, as well as equally astonishing insights into her own ancestry. 

After her only cousin, Hadley, is murdered by one of the undead, Sookie travels to New Orleans to close out the young woman's apartment and collect her things. The unsavory job gets complicated quickly; Hadley was the "honeybun" of the bisexual vampire Queen of Louisiana, the seemingly ageless bloodsucker Sophie-Anne Leclerq. The queen has recently married another powerful sovereign in an attempt to forge a formidable alliance, and tensions in the supernatural community are running high. But when Sookie and her new love interest, a were-tiger named Quinn, are inexplicably kidnapped, the mind-reading waitress must unravel the mysterious circumstances of her cousin's murder before she ends up dead as well. 

Apparently, Sookie had more family than she told us about - in this book she's going to New Orleans to clean out her cousin's apartment after that cousin died - a cousin who happened to be a vampire and the lover of the Queen of Louisiana. Sookie gets attacked by a newborn vampire and ends up in the hospital, where Eric forces Bill to tell her things she would have never expected from Bill. Then, Sookie and Quinn get kidnapped and they have to think fast to get out of there alive.

Okay, first up: Bill sucks. I knew that, but this was just confirmation of what I already thought/knew. Way to go, Eric! I think Eric is trying to win over Sookie.. But knowing Sookie, she's not giving in easily. Why did she do that with Bill, anyway? Er, okay.

This book is the introduction to the vampire summit and the politics regarding the vampires across the state. We don't really know a lot about that yet, because Eric's not exactly chatty about it. It's interesting to see and I'm sure we'll see more of that in the next book. On the other side, Sookie is threatened by the relatives of Debbie Pelt and Sookie finds Quinn and herself to be abducted from her cousin's apartment, after several failed attempts to attack them.

It was one of the books in the series that was less put together, plotwise. It's difficult for me to keep up with all the minor characters and I had some difficulty with that again. Also, I didn't really find the book to be that interesting in terms of plots; but I do think the next book will build from this one (vampire summit). The last couple of events in the book are promising and I'm looking forward to read more!

My overall rating:

Three stars and a it of change for Definitely Dead - but with the promise of a good next book.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Cover reveal: Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare

The cover of Clockwork Prince, the sequel to Clockwork Angel and the second book in The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare, was just revealed!! OH EM GEE!! The cover was revealed over at Mundie Moms (click on the name to go to the original post).

OH EM GEE!! Holy smoke. This is JEM on the cover people. JEM IS SMOKING HOTTT!! *fans herself* Whew, err, what I meant to say is that I think it's a great cover!! I can't wait to get my hands on this pretty!!

Again, please check out Mundie Moms for more about the cover AND an awesome giveaway! (I feel like I'm bringing down my chances of winning.. But this is too good not to share!!)

What do you think of the new cover? And of Jem? Does he look like how you imagined him to look like?

*goes off to stare some more at the pretty* (I think I need a poster of this cover. Seriously).

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Review: Nevermore by Kelly Creagh

Nevermore by Kelly Creagh
Published: 2010
Publisher: Atheneum
Pages: 543
Challenge: 100+ Reading Challenge, 350 Page Books Challenge
Other: First book in the Nevermore series. The sequel, Enshadowed, will be published in January of 2012.
Buy the book: Bookdepository

Cheerleader Isobel Lanley is horrified when she is paired with Varen Nethers for an English project, which is due—so unfair—on the day of the rival game. 

Cold and aloof, sardonic and sharp-tongued, Varen makes it clear he’d rather not have anything to do with her either. But when Isobel discovers strange writing in his journal, she can’t help but give this enigmatic boy with the piercing eyes another look. 

Soon, Isobel finds herself making excuses to be with Varen. Steadily pulled away from her friends and her possessive boyfriend, Isobel ventures deeper and deeper into the dream world Varen has created through the pages of his notebook, a realm where the terrifying stories of Edgar Allan Poe come to life. 

As her world begins to unravel around her, Isobel discovers that dreams, like words, hold more power than she ever imagined, and that the most frightening realities are those of the mind. 

Now she must find a way to reach Varen before he is consumed by the shadows of his own nightmares. 

His life depends on it.

Isobel is a popular girl in school. She has it all - the looks, a place in the cheerleading team, the popular friends, the football boyfriend. She gets teamed up with Varen for an English project, and she is horrified. The feeling is mutual. Varen makes it clear that he'd rather not have anything to do with her either. But from the moment he scribbles his phone number on her hand so they can talk on the phone about their assignment, something starts to change. Isobel finds herself finding excuses to be with Varen. They decide to do their project on Edgar Allan Poe, and Isobel discovers that Varen's been creating a world based on Poe's stories in his notebook.

When I got this book in, I was surprised at how thick it was. Well over 500 pages, it was a pretty big book on my shelves. This made me hesitant on picking it up, so it stayed there for several weeks. But when I picked it up and started reading it, I was hooked. Don't let the amount of pages scare you!

When Isobel is introduced, she appears to be the standard snobby, lazy, popular cheerleader. But quickly after that, she develops into a great character that stands up for her newfound friend Varen. I really liked her as a character. She realized that life's not all about how popular you are and started acting like it. She was easy to relate to after that.

I loved Varen. Varen appears to be a silent goth guy, but he has so much depth to his character. I really liked how he developed in the story. I'm curious to see how his home situation develops in Enshadowed - why his father did what he did (besides because he sucks. Sorry, he's just a lousy father imo.). Underneath the appearance of the tough guy that couldn't care less, there's a sweet, caring and lovely guy that only comes out when he's with Isobel.

Creagh has created a magnificent world in which the stories of Edgar Allan Poe are woven into, like it's no big deal. As if it's totally normal to suddenly see Pinfeathers appear at a lunch table!

I loved her writing style. Yes, the book is long and yes, some of the Poe parts required a re-read of the passage for me to understand it, but oh boy how I loved reading this book. I was actually sad that it wasn't longer when I was finished.. Can you believe it? It was just so wonderfully written and such a great story. I can't wait to read Enshadowed.

My overall rating:

Because I loved it. I was enthralled by the story and I cannot wait for the sequel to come out.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

In My Mailbox (30)

Another Sunday, another In My Mailbox! In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi over at The Story Siren where we show the books that we got this week. I went to the English Bookstore this week and I couldn't walk out of there without picking up some books.. But I only brought three so I think I did good!

I was so tempted to pick up more books! The English Bookstore sells a variety of books and the books they sell are never the same. These weren't there last time I went, so of course I had to have them! 

What did you get in your mailbox this week? Happy reading! 

Friday, May 20, 2011

[CLOSED] Spontaneous giveaway!

Sooo I have this book lying around.. They accidentally sent me two copies and one of them is still brandnew, unopened, untouched (well, okay, I touched it) and just being lonely. So what better to do with it than give it away and send it off to a new home?

I'm giving away a brand new copy of The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole, Aged 13 ¾ by Sue Townsend to one lucky winner! I'm limiting this giveaway to Europe, because I can't spare the money right now to ship outside Europe. I hope you understand! So please check the list of countries before you enter.

So - what are you waiting for? Fill in this form and be entered!

»» This giveaway is closed! ««

This giveaway is open until June 1st, 2011 0:00 GMT +01.00 (Amsterdam time).

Good luck! 

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Review: Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging by Louise Rennison

Angus, Thongs and Full-frontal Snogging by Louise Rennison 
Published: April 1999
Publisher: HarperCollins
Pages: 247
Challenge: 100+ Reading Challenge, YA Series Challenge
Other: First book in the Confessions of Georgia Nicolson series. There are ten books in total, all of which are published.
Buy the book: Bookdepository

There are six things very wrong with my life:

1. I have one of those under-the-skin spots that will never come to a head but lurk in a red way for the next two years.

2. It is on my nose

3. I have a three-year-old sister who may have peed somewhere in my room.

4. In fourteen days the summer hols will be over and then it will be back to Stalag 14 and Oberfuhrer Frau Simpson and her bunch of sadistic teachers.

5. I am very ugly and need to go into an ugly home.

6. I went to a party dressed as a stuffed olive. 

In this wildly funny journal of a year in the life of Georgia Nicolson, British author Louise Rennison has perfectly captured the soaring joys and bottomless angst of being a teenager. In the spirit of Bridget Jones's Diary, this fresh, irreverent, and simply hilarious book will leave you laughing out loud. As Georgia would say, it's "Fabbity fab fab!"

In this first book of the Confessions of Georgia Nicolson series, we first meet Georgia. Georgia is a teenage girl that shares her days with us in the form of a journal. The big matter in this book is the fact that Jas has a crush on the guy from a store, so Georgia goes in with her to support her while she talks to him. And that's when she spots Robbie, aka the Sex God. Hopelessly in love with him from the moment she spots him, we follow Georgia in her mission to get him to like her and overcoming obstacles that contain ex kissing partners that come in between.

I've read the first couple of Georgia Nicolson books when I was 13 and I found it so hilarious that I decided to write my own 'journal', including sarcastic and cynical remarks on the people around me (I don't think anyone would want to read that journal). Georgia is a great main character; hitting puberty with all its insecurities and still coping with it - even though it means losing your eyebrows in an attempt to keep them in shape. She has a great sense of humor and I loved reading this book (again). The fact that Georgia only thinks about herself is absolutely hilarious and didn't bother me one second.

The smaller characters are almost equally hilarious, like Georgia's cat Angus, her best friend Jas and her little sister Libby. This book is absolutely a feel good book and it had me laughing out loud - a lot.

My overall rating:

Because it's fabbity fab fab!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Review: Dead as a Doornail by Charlaine Harris

Dead as a Doornail by Charlaine Harris
Published: May 3rd, 2005
Publisher: Gollancz
Pages: 295
Challenge: 100+ Reading Challenge
Other: Fifth book in the Sookie Stackhouse series. There are currently 10 books in the series, with two more being published in the future. The eleventh installment, Dead Reckoning, will be published May 3rd, 2011.
Buy the book: Bookdepository

Warning: This review and synopsis contains (slight) spoilers for those of you who haven't read the previous books in the series. Reading is at your own risk. 

When Sookie sees her brother Jason's eyes start to change, she knows he's about to turn into a werepanther for the first time - a transformation he embraces more readily than most shapeshifters she's known. But her concern for her brother becomes cold fear when a sniper sets his deadly sights on the local changeling population - and Jason's new panther brethren suspect he may be the shooter." 

Now, Sookie has until the next full moon to find out who's behind the attacks - unless the killer decides to find her first.

In this fifth installment in the Sookie Stackhouse series, there's a killer on the loose once again - and this one is taking down Weres and shapeshifters. Sookie gets assigned a vampire to serve as a bodyguard, but he doesn't turn out to be of much help. 

Sookie is known for her talent to get into trouble without her own fault, as we've seen before. Besides that, Sookie has a ton of admirers that want her attention. The latest addition is Quinn, a not-fully human male she met at the election ceremony for the new pack master of the Weres. I gotta say, I'm a pretty big Eric fangirl, so to see that Sookie is thinking of taking another detour, isn't really exciting me. 

I find the Sookie Stackhouse books easy to read, but I do have some difficulty with the plots in the books. I can't see them coming for miles and even though that's a big thumbs up, I like to see a little of what's going on. I'm enjoying myself nontheless and I'm definitely going to be reading the rest of this series.

My overall rating: 

3.5 stars - I found this one easy to read, but sometimes it's a little over the top - and that includes Sookie's male fanclub. 

Sunday, May 15, 2011

In My Mailbox (29)

Another Sunday, another In My Mailbox! In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi over at The Story Siren where we show what bookish things we got this week. I had another great week, so here's my IMM vlog!

That sums up a great week for me! What did you get in your mailbox this week? Happy reading! 

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Review: Sing me to Sleep by Angela Morrison

Sing me to Sleep by Angela Morrison
Published: March 4th, 2010
Publisher: Razorbill
Pages: 301
Challenge: 100+ Reading Challenge
Other: NA
Video review: Youtube
Buy the book: Bookdepository

Beth has always been “The Beast”—that's what everyone at school calls her because of her awkward height, facial scars, and thick glasses. Beth's only friend is geeky, golden-haired Scott. That is, until she's selected to be her choir's soprano soloist, and receives the makeover that will change her life forever.

When Beth's choir travels to Switzerland, she meets Derek: pale, brooding, totally dreamy. Derek's untethered passion—for music, and for Beth—leaves her breathless. Because in Derek's eyes? She's not The Beast, she's The Beauty.

When Beth comes home, Scott, her best friend in the world, makes a confession that leaves her completely torn. Should she stand by sweet, steady Scott or follow the dangerous, intense new feelings she has for Derek?

The closer Beth gets to Derek, the further away he seems. Then Beth discovers that Derek's been hiding a dark secret from her …one that could shatter everything.

 Beth has always been an outsider at her school. With her awkward height, thick glasses and facial scars, she's called The Beast and her schoolmates are a constant reminder. She only has one friend, Scott, who sticks with her no matter what. When Beth speaks up in her choir, claiming that she can sing the solo and nailing it, she's named the soloist of her choir and gets the makeover that will change her life. Beth and her choir travel to Switzerland to join a choir competition, where she meets Derek. Derek loves her right away. But when she comes home from the competition, Scott tells her he loves her, and Beth is torn between the two guys.

I decided to pick up this book because I saw someone reviewing it on Youtube. I hadn't heard of it before, even though it's only recently published (2010) and after reading the synopsis, I was curious. Boy, am I glad that I picked this book up.

Morrison does a great job in describing how Beth feels in the beginning of the book. You can feel how insecure she is because everybody tells her she's ugly. I could feel Beth really believed she was ugly. In the first couple of chapters, we also meet Scott. Scott is a sweet guy and Beth's best friend - even though he sometimes hints to something more. He was such a sweet and loving character, and he also tried to protect Beth. He wasn't afraid to speak his mind and I really liked that about him.

Because of Morrison's writing, I was able to really relate to Beth and feel what she was feeling. The insecurity stayed with her after her makeover, and that made it easier to believe that Beth was trying to cope with it. I have to say that I think the transformation was overdone with cosmetic procedures. But overall, I really liked her story and seeing how she developed.

Then there's Derek. Derek is pale and gorgeous, and he loves Beth from the moment he hears her voice. But the closer the two of them get, the further away he seems. I understand why he did what he did, but I think he's an ass (excuse my language) anyway. (Team Scott here from the beginning..) I completely understand why he was acting the way that he did. It's all explained in the book.

I would definitely recommend picking up a copy of this book if you haven't already. It was such a beautiful book, with a heartbreaking story. I would prepare by putting a box of tissues at the ready, because believe me, you're going to need it. I bawled my eyes out for the last 50 - 60 pages.

My overall rating:

Because I love this story. Instantly one of my favorite books of all time. Definitely recommended! (now pick up a copy!!)

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Review: Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick

Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick
Published: October 13th, 2009
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Pages: 391
Challenge: 100+ Reading Challenge, YA Series Challenge, Off the Shelf!
Other: First book in the Hush, Hush series. The third book, Silence, will be published October 4th, 2011.
Video review: Youtube
Buy the book: Bookdepository

For Nora Grey, romance was not part of the plan. She's never been particularly attracted to the boys at her school, no matter how much her best friend, Vee, pushes them at her...until Patch comes along. 

With his easy smile and eyes that seem to see inside her, Nora is drawn to him against her better judgment, but after a series of terrifying encounters, Nora's not sure whom to trust. Patch seems to be everywhere she is, and to know more about her than her closest friends. She can't decide whether she should fall into his arms or run and hide. And when she tries to seek some answers, she finds herself near a truth that is far more unsettling than anything Patch makes her feel. 

For Nora is right in the middle of an ancient battle between the immortal and those that have fallen - and when it comes to choosing sides, the wrong choice will cost her life.

Nora is a normal teenager - although she isn't particularly interested in boys. Until Patch is put on the seat next to her when her teacher changes the seating in the class room. After that, Patch seems to know a lot more about her than he could have known by watching, and he seems to be everywhere she goes. She is warned not to get too close to him - but in some situations, she just can't help it.

I've had this book since late last year and even though I was looking forward to reading it, I wasn't tempted to pick it up any time soon. I'm glad I finally did though, since this book did not disappoint. Actually, it's a pretty good book and therefore I read it in one sitting (which gave me the white-sunglasses-plastered-on-my-tanned-face-look).

Even though the first 100 (?) pages or so are introduction to Nora and Patch and how they meet, how weird Patch is towards her and so on, I didn't found it boring at any point in the story. The story is set up nicely and it's well written in general - not a boring moment in this book. I really have to give Fitzpatrick a big compliment for that - I haven't read many books where the author could pull that off. Well done!

I found Patch to be an interesting character. Dark and mysterious, but yet not the typical swoonworthy male character. At least, I didn't think he was swoonworthy, even though I think he's intriguing. Anyway, his role in the book was carefully put together and I like the concept that Fitzpatrick put into the scarring.

Nora was a good main character and I found her easy to relate to. She was observing and even when she couldn't put the puzzle pieces together, she noticed the important stuff going on. I found the book overall a good read, with interesting characters and a nice plot, and I'm really looking forward to reading Crescendo, which I will be picking up soon!

My overall rating:

Four stars for Hush, Hush - because I didn't la-la-love it, but I'm still really excited to read the next book in the series!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

In My Mailbox (28)

Another Sunday, another In My Mailbox! In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi over at The Story Siren where we show what we got this week. I already thought I needed to skip IMM for this week because I didn't get any books, until my Amazon order suddenly arrived! It was shipped on Friday from the UK, so I wasn't expecting it to arrive at all, yet there it was when I came home! *squeee* Anyway, here's my vlog for this week's IMM!

Outside In by Maria V. Snyder
The Darkest Kiss by Gena Showalter
The Underland Chronicles boxed set by Suzanne Collins with:
Gregor the Overlander
The Curse of the Warmblood
The Prophecy of Bane
The Marks of Secret
The Code of Claw

I'm SO excited to get the boxed set of The Underland Chronicles. It's not nearly as popular as The Hunger Games Trilogy, but I've heard great things so I'm really excited to start reading the series :) 

What did you get in your mailbox this week? Happy reading! 

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Review: Entangled by Cat Clarke

Entangled by Cat Clarke
Published: January 6th, 2011
Publisher: Quercus
Pages: 374
Challenge: Debut Author Challenge, 100+ Reading Challenge
Other: NA
Video review: Youtube
Buy the book: Bookdepository

The same questions whirl round and round in my head: 
What does he want from me? 
How could I have let this happen? 

17-year-old Grace wakes up in a white room, with a table, pens and paper - and no clue how she got here. 

As Grace pours her tangled life onto the page, she is forced to remember everything she's tried to forget. There's falling hopelessly in love with the gorgeous Nat, and the unravelling of her relationship with her best friend Sal. But there's something missing. As hard as she's trying to remember, is there something she just can't see? 

Grace must face the most important question of all. Why is she here? 

A story of dark secrets, intense friendship and electrifying attraction.

In Entangled, we meet up with Grace. Grace is in a white room with all white furniture and other stuff, with only paper and pens available to her. So what does she do? She writes. The whole book is based on her telling what happened that put her in the place she is in now.

It's really difficult to talk about this book without spoiling anything that happens in the story, because everything is tied together to form the plot. I didn't find the storyline to be particularly original, but I really liked the way Clarke has written the book and her way of showing Grace's story. She combines what the main character is experiencing now with the memories that she has that brought her to where she is now.

I found Grace to be really superficial on the outside. That's the way she was supposed to appear - only caring about herself and then mainly about booze, going to pubs and sex (yes, that's quite high up on her priority list). But on the inside, she is dealing with feelings that she doesn't know what to do with. Grace doesn't know how to talk about her feelings, or how to express them, so she cuts herself. Self mutilation is a taboo subject and I think Clarke did a good job on writing the feelings of our main character, as well as expressing her motives to do so.

The characters (Grace, Sal, Nat) were all on the shallow side. They are teenagers, so I suppose that's their way of thinking, but it bothered me that they only seemed to think about themselves. Having said that, I really liked the fact that a minor character got a bigger role towards the end. He was always looked over before that, but he ended up being really valuable for the ending of the story and I loved the way Clarke wrote the ending. It was emotional and heartbreaking, even though you might have expected this to happen. I found the ending especially well written.

This book talked about the issue of self mutilation which is a taboo subject and I'm glad that such an important matter was touched upon in this book. Another thing that I liked about the book is that Cat Clarke is a British author - which made a nice change in reading, in between all the books from the US I've been reading :)

My overall rating:

Because this is a good YA debut for 2011 and I recommend that you pick up a copy for your Debut Author Challenge list! Also, it's British!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Review: Dead to the World by Charlaine Harris

Dead to the World by Charlaine Harris
Published: May 4th, 2004
Publisher: Gollancz
Pages: 291
Challenge: 100+ Reading Challenge
Other: Fourth book in the Sookie Stackhouse series. There are currently 10 books in the series, with two more being published in the future. The eleventh installment, Dead Reckoning, will be published May 3rd, 2011.
Buy the book: Bookdepository

Warning: This review contains (slight) spoilers for those of you who haven't read the previous books in the series. Reading is at your own risk.

When cocktail waitress Sookie Stackhouse sees a naked man on the side of the road, she doesn't just drive on by. Turns out the poor thing hasn't a clue who he is, but Sookie does. It's Eric the vampire--but now he's a kinder, gentler Eric. And a scared Eric, because whoever took his memory now wants his life.

In this fourth installment, Eric has a leading role. Sookie finds him running alongside the road in the night of New Year's Eve, barefoot, without clothes and obviously terrified. When Sookie pulls over her car to help him, he doesn't recognize her. Eric is suffering from amnesia and he has no idea who he is, let alone the others around him. It turns out that there's an evil Witch coven that moved into the area, and they want power. Sookie finds herself in yet more trouble - because an Eric without his memory is even harder to resist.

After reading Club Dead, Sookie finds herself in yet more trouble. This time, Eric is in trouble and he needs to be protected. Sookie takes him in, and finds him even harder to resist than usual. I like Eric's normal character, so it was weird to see him act like this. I liked seeing more of Eric, but I hope we'll see him just as much in his normal behaviour in the next book of the series.

Thankfully, this book wasn't filled with a lot of Bill. Is it obvious that I don't like the guy? He's still arrogant and selfish, but on top of that he's secretive and still bossy over Sookie.

Overall, I would say that I found Club Dead to be better, just because there was tension between Sookie and Eric without Eric having his memory removed. But I really enjoyed reading this book and I'm finally fully convinced that I will read the entire series, and not just because I own the boxed set, but because I actually really enjoy reading the books. I might even consider watching the television series, too..

My overall rating:

Another three and a half stars for a Sookie Stackhouse book - with the hope of making it a four star if the series continues to go up like it does. And if I get to see more Eric! (is my fangirliness obvious?)

Monday, May 2, 2011

April wrap up

April was a little slower in terms of reading, because of my sisters illness, but I still managed to get a fair few books read. To be exact: 14 books, making a total of 55 books read this year (well, actually it's already 56, but that book counts towards May!). That's a total of 19,708 pages. Holy shiz, that's almost 20,000 pages! *stares in awe at the number* And yes, I know that 55 books is a ridiculous amount of books and that I'm way ahead of my reading challenge, but I love escaping in books. And I have to say: I've gotten better and better in selecting books to pick up, which means that I haven't read a book that has gotten less than a 3 star rating on GoodReads (big YAY for my newfound selecting abilities - my bank account thanks you). Anyway, here's my (incomplete) wrap up video!

(I forgot to mention No and Me by Delphine de Vigan. Whoops!)

Read in April
1. Sing me to Sleep by Angela Morrison
2. Angus, Thongs and Full-frontal Snogging by Louise Rennison
3. Nevermore by Kelly Creagh
4. Dead and Gone by Charlaine Harris
5. No and Me by Delphine de Vigan
6. The Last Olympian by Rick Riordan
7. Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
8. The Emerald Talisman by Brenda Pandos
9. A Touch of Dead by Charlaine Harris
10. The Iron Thorn by Caitlin Kittredge
11. City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
12. Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
13. Dark Lover by J.R. Ward
14. The Red Pyramid by Rick Riordan

Started but not yet finished
The Darkest Night by Gena Showalter
(Chosen by P.C. & Kristin Cast)

So.. My favorite of this month.. Of course I *loved* The Last Olympian, because well duh, it's Percy! But besides that, I really really loved Sing me to Sleep (bawled my eyes out!) and Nevermore. But honestly, it's been a great month of reading again. There's not a single book that disappointed me and that alone is amazing. I loved Anna, and St. Claire, but I also loved Peeta, Dean, Clary, Eric and of course Georgia. I can't imagine having a better month in reading, but then again.. I wasn't expecting to top March, either.

So tell me.. What books have you read this month? What was your favorite? And have you read any books that disappointed you?

Sunday, May 1, 2011

In My Mailbox (27)

Another Sunday, another In My Mailbox! In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren. Another small week for me, bookwise, but I'm really happy with what I got!

BIG THANK YOU to HarperCollins who sent me a finished copy of Divergent that came totally unexpected! It is awesome, so if you haven't ordered your copy you definitely should! 

That's it for this week, what did you get in your mailbox? Happy reading! 
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