Slideshow shadow

Spring Wishlist Giveaway

April 26, 2017 in Bookish Posts, Current Giveaways

It’s been a while since we ran a giveaway on the blog so I think a wee Spring wishlist giveaway is in order. There have been so many fantastic releases lately with many, many more to come, I thought I’d give you the chance to win a book from your wishlist. Whether it’s a new release this Spring or a book you’ve been meaning to pick up for a while, you could get your hands on a copy.

win a book from your wishlist

Simply enter via the rafflecopter entry form below. There are no mandatory entries, so just do as many or as few as you wish!

The giveaway is OPEN INTERNATIONALLY as long as The Book Depository ships to your location (check here). The winner will receive a book of their choice up to the value of £10.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!

Review: Waking Gods

April 13, 2017 in Book Reviews, Sci-Fi

I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Waking GodsWaking Gods by Sylvain Neuvel
Series: Themis Files #2
on 6th April 2017
Genres: Sci-Fi
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Goodreads
three-stars

As a child, Rose Franklin made an astonishing discovery: a giant metallic hand, buried deep within the earth. As an adult, she’s dedicated her brilliant scientific career to solving the mystery that began that fateful day: Why was a titanic robot of unknown origin buried in pieces around the world? Years of investigation have produced intriguing answers—and even more perplexing questions. But the truth is closer than ever before when a second robot, more massive than the first, materializes and lashes out with deadly force.

Now humankind faces a nightmare invasion scenario made real, as more colossal machines touch down across the globe. But Rose and her team at the Earth Defense Corps refuse to surrender. They can turn the tide if they can unlock the last secrets of an advanced alien technology. The greatest weapon humanity wields is knowledge in a do-or-die battle to inherit the Earth . . . and maybe even the stars.

Having been left on somewhat of a cliffhanger at the end of Sleeping Giants (see my review here), I’ve been looking forward to getting my hands on the second Themis Files book, Waking Gods, ever since.

Waking Gods follows a similar format to Sleeping Giants, a dossier of interviews and transcripts which tell the story. I really enjoy this form of storytelling – it’s different but works well. Perhaps it was my eARC but I did, at times, find it hard to keep up with who was actually talking. Then again, it’s possibly just my tired brain.

I felt that things escalated quickly in this book. Avoiding spoilers, let’s just say that some things kick off! Like book one, Waking Gods is filled with information – which can, at times, feel quite a lot. There are plot twists,

There are plot twists, secrets, and even some answers. I must admit though, that while I enjoyed this book I didn’t really ever find myself completely absorbed by it. I don’t think I felt as connected to the characters in this book for some reason.

That said, I’m glad I read it and to finally have some answers. It’s a very inventive series and I actually learned quite a bit in this book too. That ending though… is there to be a third book?

three-stars

Bookworm Candles & Crafts March Box

April 11, 2017 in Bookish Candles, Bookish Posts, Unboxings

Back in February. I purchased a couple of bookish candles from Bookworm Candles and Crafts for my sister-in-law’s birthday. As soon as they arrived, I must admit I was pretty jealous and wanted to keep them for myself! Obviously, I gave them to her, but as soon as the opportunity arose I placed an order for myself too!

I was really impressed by Danielle’s attention to detail in the candles I ordered, so when I saw her March box was to be an ACOTAR theme, “I Love You, Thorns And All” needless to say I couldn’t resist.

So, I thought I’d share the box with you. Fair warning though, I couldn’t figure out how to change the settings back on the camera after my husband had been photographing the Aurora Borealis, so these are taken with a phone.

The box came well wrapped and protected. Had this yellow tissue paper been the entire wrapping I’d have been very pleased.
packaging collage

However, under the tissue paper was I found this!

box

Just look at that attention to detail!

label

It seemed such a shame to open this box, but open it I did and it was full of goodies ALL handmade by Danielle herself.

first look

First of all, I unwrapped this stunning Rhysand candle.

rhys candle collage

It smells incredible and quite honestly I’m rationing it as I love it so much. With every candle Danielle adds a crocheted touch using wool specially selected to match the scent – once again, that attention to detail!

I wish I had a better photo of this rose lip balm.

lip balm 2

It is lightly topped with glitter and the balm itself is lovely.

Continuing with the rose scent, we received rose bath salts.

Untitled collage (3)

I haven’t used them yet but I’m so excited to, I love bath salts!

This Rhysand quote mirror is a really cute addition to the box.

mirror

As is this charm bracelet (sorry again for the poor quality photo).

bracelet collage

Finally, possibly my favourite item – the Spring Court candle!

spring court candle 4 collage

It really does smell like spring flowers, and look at the finish of the candle!

I can’t emphasise enough how impressed I am with Danielle’s work. She goes the extra mile to ensure that all of her items are special.

contents

Bookworm Candles and Crafts have recently launched their new website. If you pop over you’ll be able to get your hands on the April, May and June boxes – the themes sound fantastic! There are just a few April boxes left though – Hunger Games fans, you might want to check this one out!

I’m so pleased with my box, it was such a special experience – a true treat.

Review: The Hate U Give

April 6, 2017 in Book Reviews, Contemporary, YA

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: The Hate U GiveThe Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
Published by Walker on 6th April 2017
Genres: Contemporary, YA
Format: Paperback
Source: Publisher
Goodreads
five-stars

Sixteen-year-old Starr lives in two worlds: the poor neighbourhood where she was born and raised and her posh high school in the suburbs. The uneasy balance between them is shattered when Starr is the only witness to the fatal shooting of her unarmed best friend, Khalil, by a police officer. Now what Starr says could destroy her community. It could also get her killed.

There are times when I am just at a complete loss for words upon finishing a book (handy for a book blogger, I’m sure you’ll agree). This is one of those times.

The Hate U Give has been out in the US for a month or so now and everything I’d been hearing from readers over there is this book is a “must-read”. Could it really live up to this hype? The simple answer is YES!

In truth, there is no way that I can do this book justice, but I will try to share some of my thoughts with you.

Inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement, this is such an incredibly important novel. It deals with racism, police brutality and life in the inner city. It also brings strong messages of love, family and community.

It’s an emotional read – knowing that this is based on reality, that these events actually happen makes the emotion all the deeper.

The characters in this book are incredible and so well written. Starr is an immediately likable character whom we root for from the get go. I loved her family and their relationship, I found it was particularly refreshing for a YA novel.

Even the peripheral characters in this story are memorable. Thomas has a way of writing that makes you feel like you’re in there with her characters, not just on the outside looking in.

This is a hugely relevant novel, that not only tells a story but educates the reader. It’s a unique book written by someone who truly knows what she’s talking about – an #ownvoices author, of which we need many more.

This book will tug at your heart, fill you with anger, make you sob with sadness and yet it’ll also make you laugh. It’ll open your eyes, make you really see the world and make you look upon the reporting of crimes in a new light.

It’s a book that will stay with you forever and I urge you ALL (young and old alike) to read it.

five-stars

Review: The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley

April 4, 2017 in Book Reviews, Contemporary, Thriller

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: The Twelve Lives of Samuel HawleyThe Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley by Hannah Tinti
Published by Tinder Press on 6th April 2017
Genres: Contemporary, thriller
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
Goodreads
four-half-stars

After years spent living on the run, Samuel Hawley moves with his teenage daughter Loo to Olympus, Massachusetts. There, in his late wife's hometown, Hawley finds work as a fisherman, while Loo struggles to fit in at school and grows curious about her mother's mysterious death. Haunting them both are twelve scars Hawley carries on his body, from twelve bullets in his criminal past - a past that eventually spills over into his daughter's present, until together they must face a reckoning yet to come. Both a coming of age novel and a literary thriller, THE TWELVE LIVES OF SAMUEL HAWLEY explores what it means to be a hero, and the price we pay to protect the people we love most.

Told through alternating chapters, past and present, The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley slowly uncovers the tale of Samuel Hawley’s life.

Hawley has a daughter, Loo, whom he is raising alone following the death of his wife. Hawley and Loo have constantly been on the move, never living in one place for very long. When they decide to buy a house in Olympus, Loo has to adjust to this new way of life – a new school, a new home and more possessions than she could bundle up into her suitcase.

We follow Loo through present time as she lives this new life with her father. Loo’s is a coming of age tale, getting older and wondering what a mother’s kiss feels like, starting to question who her father is and noticing the way people question the many scars on his body.

Each of Hawley’s gunshot scars tells a tale. In between our present-day chapters with Loo, we learn how Hawley acquired each scar, thus slowly revealing to us Hawley’s history, and piece-by-piece building his story.

I really enjoyed this novel. I loved the way the story unfolded through this unique storytelling style – the history of Hawley’s scar forming the perfect flashback chapters.

Mixed with the innocence of Loo’s childhood we have violence. I mean, if you don’t like to read about violence, then be warned. Yet it’s not all blood and guns, there’s the story of love, loss, grief. There’s the relationship between a father and his daughter, the tale of a father’s protection and a teenage girl trying to find her way in the world.

I have to say that I really loved Hawley. It’s a weird situation – am I meant to like this guy? But I challenge you not to!

This story is brutal in places, heart-wrenching in others. It’s incredibly well written and the characters of Hawley and Loo make for the perfect balance. It’s one of those books where I’m sad to have to leave these characters behind.

four-half-stars