Saturday, 26 January 2013

Book Review- Oath of Servitude

Title: Oath of Servitude
Author: C.E Wilson
Published: September 2012
Pages: 159 (ebook)
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Paranormal

Rating: 3.5/5


This is the story of Teague and Cailin, two teenagers who have been brought together by fate. Teague, a human, struggles to come to terms with the consequences of a recent accident that has destroyed the happy life that he had once enjoyed. Cailin, a pixi, is trying to stay true to herself while fighting against forces beyond her control that have exiled her from her home into this strange world of humans. She fears the darkness. He cannot escape it. But when the two of them are thrown together, they begin to discover the light inside of themselves.
 
Firstly I would like to thank the author C.E Wilson for providing me with a copy of this novel.

First the things I liked about this novel.
I thought this was a fun, light read about the relationship between a pixi and a teenage boy. I thought it was an interesting and unique plot idea, featuring pixis which is a paranormal creature I haven't read about before, so I really liked that idea. I liked the character of Cailin, I thought she was great, she was proud, stubborn and she had great morals. I thought Teague was an interesting character, I liked him, but I disliked him too. I thought the fact that he was blind added a twist, which made this main male character a bit different. I thought he was a bit childish and immature though, I understand he was affected by the accident, but I didn't realy feel for him. I did like the relationship between the two main characters, I thought it was cute, and I really liked the banter between the two characters.
Now the things I didn't like so much.
I felt that the writing was a bit clunky and clumsy at times, it didn't flow in some parts. I felt that some chapters and characters were a bit dry and lifeless, I felt that some of the characters needed spicing up a bit. I felt there was a bit of a lack of development throughout parts of the novel. The ending of this novel confused me slightly as I didn't really understand the ins and outs of pixi laws so the importance of the ending was lost on me. There were also a lot of questions left unanswered, obviously to create suspense and encourage you to read the next novel, but I felt that important information was left out, which would've added to our understanding of the novel.
Overall I enjoyed this novel, I thought it was a light quick read, dealing with an interesting idea. It had promise, it just didn't turn out as I had hoped.

Monday, 14 January 2013

Book Review- Florence

Title: Florence
Author: Ciye Cho
Published: June 28th 2012
Pages: 336 (ebook)
Genre: Young Adult, Mermaids, Fantasy

Rating: 4/5

Seventeen-year-old Florence Waverley is out of her depth. Literally. Kidnapped and taken below the waves to the mer world of Niemela, she is the ultimate gift for merman Prince Kiren: a human familiar tied to his side. But nothing is what it seems amid the beauty and danger of a dark ocean.
Every Niemelan has a role to play, from the mermaids who weave towers out of kelp to the warriors who fight sea monsters. But in trying to survive, Florence will end up in the middle of a war between the mer and the Darkness. A conflict that will push her between two brothers: Kiren, the charmer inexplicably drawn to both her and the monsters; and Rolan, the loner who has been pushing her away since the day they met. But in order to take a stand--and find out where she belongs--Florence will have to risk it all: her life, her heart... and her very soul.
I was contacted by the author and offered an ebook copy of the novel in return for an honest review. This has in no way affected my opinions of this novel.
I haven't read a novel about mermaids for a long time, longer than I can remember, so this novel really caught my eye. The plot was relatively simple and easily to understand, that's not to say that it was predictable, there were some good plot twists through the story.
I really loved the world that was created by the author, it was so different, and so imaginitive, I was fully engrossed by it. I also really liked the characters, I was worried about a love triangle forming, but thankfully that didn't happen. Florence is the main character and I thought she was brave and logical and sensible. I liked that she wasn't really popular at school, and I really want to know more about her family especially her dad. The two male main characters were really good too, Kiren seemed like he was going to be your typical YA heart throb, but as you get further through the book, you discover that isn't true. I like that he becomes more deep and developed as you go through, you find out there is more to him without really knowing anything about him! Rolan is the other male character, and he begins as the less likeable brother, but their roles are soon reversed. He starts off distant and seems to dislike Florence, but by the end he was by far my favourite of the two.
I liked the mysterious threat of the Darkness, which we know very little about, but which I'm sure will feature heavily in the next novel. The plot was action filled and adventurous, and moved along at a quick pace, keeping me enthralled.
Overall I would recommend reading this novel, as its different from most of the novels in YA at the moment, and I really enjoyed it. I can't wait to get started on the sequel.

Sunday, 13 January 2013

Book Review- Dash + Lily's Book of Dares

Title: Dash + Lily's Book of Dares
Author: Rachel Cohn, David Levithan
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: October 26th 2010
Pages: 260
Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Contemporary

Rating: 4/5


“I’ve left some clues for you.
If you want them, turn the page.
If you don’t, put the book back on the shelf, please.”

So begins the latest whirlwind romance from the bestselling authors of Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist. Lily has left a red notebook full of challenges on a favorite bookstore shelf, waiting for just the right guy to come along and accept its dares. But is Dash that right guy? Or are Dash and Lily only destined to trade dares, dreams, and desires in the notebook they pass back and forth at locations across New York? Could their in-person selves possibly connect as well as their notebook versions? Or will they be a comic mismatch of disastrous proportions?

Rachel Cohn and David Levithan have written a love story that will have readers perusing bookstore shelves, looking and longing for a love (and a red notebook) of their own.
I requested this novel from Net Galley, and I was luckily approved an ebook copy. 

I read this book around Christmas, as I was looking for a Christmassy read, and I knew this one is popular with quite a few people on Goodreads. 
I really liked the ideas in this novel, I thought the idea of the dares was a really good one, I only wish they had gone on longer. I also really liked the family backgrounds of the two main characters and the amount of detail that the authors went into was good, even if I found their family situations a little far fetched. I liked all the music references that were throughout the novel, I thought that was a cool addition. I thought the relationship between the two main characters was nice, I thought it seemed like a sensible, real life situation and a believable relationship. I thought the idea of the two authors writing alternate chapters, from their character was a good idea which added to the narrative voice through the novel. I liked the main characters Dash and Lily, I liked their sarcasm, it added humour to the novel. I liked how daring they both were, how imaginative and ridiculous their dares that they set each other were. Dash's dislike of Christmas contrasted well with Lily's love of the festive season. 
I really liked the New York setting, I would love to visit New York at Christmas, so it was nice to read about the different well known sites. 
Overall I thought this was a cute read, it had some funny parts, but all in all it was a light hearted read, which made me feel happy and hopeful after reading.

Saturday, 12 January 2013

Author Interview- Bella Forrest

Bella Forrest is the author of Young Adult paranormal novel A Shade of Vampire, which was published 14th of December 2012.
I asked Bella some questions and she very kindly answered them!


1. Can you tell us a bit about yourself and your novel A Shade of Vampire?
I've always had an active imagination. My favorite subject at school was
creative writing and I wrote a lot of poetry in my spare time. From quite
a young age, I felt the urge to express my ideas in words. So I have
pretty much always been writing. Although it was only recently, on
December 14th (2012), that my debut novel, A Shade of Vampire, was
published.


2. Where did you get the inspiration for your novel?
I'm not really sure where the original inspiration came from. The idea
just sort of popped into my head one day and the characters and the storyline developed organically from there.

3. When is your favourite time and place to write?
My favorite time: the early hours of the morning - from around 2am
onwards. It's a bit crazy, but I just love this time of the day. It’s when
I feel most inspired.
I don't really have a favorite place... just as long as my seat is comfy!

4. If you could meet any person, dead or alive, who would it be?
William Shakespeare.

5. Are there any books that you wish you had written?
When I admire a book, I don't normally wish that I had written it.
But if I had to pick one it would probably be one of Jane Austen's novels!


Check out my review: http://no1booklover.blogspot.co.uk/2013/01/book-review-shade-of-vampire.html

Sunday, 6 January 2013

Book Review- A Shade of Vampire

Title: A Shade of Vampire
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Author: Bella Forrest
Publication Date: December 14th 2012
Pages: 147 Kindle Edition
Genre: Paranormal, Young Adult, Paranormal Romance

Rating: 5/5

Available on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/A-Shade-Of-Vamp...

Check out A Shade Of Vampire on facebook: www.facebook.com/AShadeOfVampire

On the evening of Sofia Claremont's 17th birthday, she is sucked into a nightmare from which she cannot wake.

A quiet evening walk along a beach brings her face to face with a dangerous pale creature that craves much more than her blood.

She is kidnapped to an island where the sun is eternally forbidden to shine.

An island uncharted by any map and ruled by the most powerful vampire coven on the planet. She wakes here as a slave, a captive in chains.

Sofia's life takes a thrilling and terrifying turn when she is the one selected out of hundreds of girls to join the harem of Derek Novak, the dark royal Prince.

Despite his addiction to power and obsessive thirst for her blood, Sofia soon realizes that the safest place on the island is within his quarters, and she must do all within her power to win him over if she is to survive even one more night.

Will she succeed? ...or is she destined to the same fate that all other girls have met at the hands of the Novaks?
www.facebook.com/AShadeOfVampire- Goodreads


I received a digital copy of this novel in return for a honest review.

I don't read a lot of vampire books, I think Twilight has scared me off most vampire related books, but I was intrigued by the synopsis of this novel so I thought I would give it a try. I'm so glad I did!
This novel is only 147 pages long, so it's easily read, in fact I read it in one sitting. Don't let the length deceive you, the author packs a lot into those pages.
The plot is good, although a lot of this novel is spent developing the characters, which the author does well. The storyline is quite predictable, I could guess what was going to happen, but that made the novel no less enjoyable.
I liked the idea of the Blood Shade and the vampires living in a coven, as it was a new twist on vampires. The threat of war with the Shadowhunters, is another good plot idea, as it looms over the novel, but as a reader you know very little about it.
I especially liked the ending, without giving to much away, I liked the cliffhanger and the vision.
Writing the novel from both Derek and Sofia the main characters point of views allowed for the reader to be much more involved and attached to the characters. It also allowed us to see exactly what they feel for each other, and what they think of things.
The secondary characters were really great, and definitely add something to the overall story. The threatening and down right evil Lucas, whom I can't wait to read more about, and how he is tied to Derek, and how he feels about Sofia, was an interesting plotline in the story which I hope continues. Derek's family also really interest me, hopefully we get to know them a little better in the next novel. Also I hope Derek's father makes an appearance as we hear about him in this novel, but never meet him as he is away.
Ben was another good secondary character, the coincidence of both him and Sofia being captured by the vampires, and also the fact that Sofia has feelings for him, all added to the story, and Sofia's character.
I did feel like there was a hint of insta-love, with Derek and Sofia falling in love very quickly, but I let it slide, becasue the author made it feel possible in the context.
Derek is a very old vampire (I can't remember how old!) who recently woke up from some sort of sleep he put himself in, and Sofia is captured as a present/meal for him. He doesn't kill her, instead he finds himself falling in love with her. He is an interesting character whom I want to know more about his history and his personality.
Sofia is Derek's human love interest who was kidnapped and brought to him when he woke up. She stands up for herself, and although she is afraid of Derek (rightly so!), she trusts him. She fights for what she believes in, and doesn't just bow down to whatever the vampires say.
If you are a fan of vampires or Twilight you will probably enjoy this novel, but non vampire fans may enjoy it too.

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

January TBR

I have the first week of January off school, so I am going to try and get through a couple of books before term starts. I am hoping to read these 6 books, as some of them are author requests and the others have been sitting in my TBR pile for a while!

The Shipping News by Annie Proulx
A Shade of Vampire by Bella Forrest
Last Seen Wearing by Colin Dexter
Florence by Ciye Cho
Fugitive by Louise Miles
Winter in Madrid by C.J. Samson

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

December Wrap up

This is the last wrap up post of 2012 and probably the last post of 2012 as this is due to go up on Tuesday. I started my book blog in July of this year, and I would just like to thank everyone who has read my posts, followed my blog or commented. It means a lot to me to see that people are reading what I type, and hopefully discover some books from it. I hope you all had a great 2012 and I wish you all an even better 2013. Now onto the wrap up!!

The first book I read was Legend by Marie Lu. I borrowed this novel from the library, and although it was a little predictable, it was still a great read. I gave it 4/5 stars.
I also read Timbuctoo by Tahir Shah. I won a special edition hardback version of this novel from the Goodreads giveaway, and I really enjoyed it. I really liked the historical setting, and I gave it 5/5.
I also read Monsieur Ibrahim et les Fleurs Du Coran by Eric Emmanuel Schmitt in French class, and I gave it 4/5.
I read A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini this month for my school book club. I found this a really informative read, about a country I knew very little about. I gave this novel 4/5.
Next I read Blue Dust: Forbidden by Katy Krump. I received an ebook copy of the novel from the author. I really enjoyed the sci-fi feel to this novel, I gave it 5/5.
The last book I read in December was Dash and Lily's Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan. I really wanted to read a novel set at Christmas and I had an ebook copy from Net Galley I had been meaning to read. I really liked this novel, I gave it 4/5.

My review of Legend by Marie Lu
http://no1booklover.blogspot.co.uk/2012/12/book-review-legend.html

My review of Blue Dust: Forbidden by Katy Krump
http://no1booklover.blogspot.co.uk/2012/12/book-review-blue-dust-forbidden.html
Katy Krump author interview
http://no1booklover.blogspot.co.uk/2012/12/author-interview-katy-krump.html