Top Ten Books On My Winter TBR

toptentuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the Broke and the Bookish. Each week they post a new list and invite bloggers to answer them. This weeks is Top Ten Books On My Winter TBR. So without further ado, here is my list:

1) My True Love Gave To Me edited by Stephanie Perkins – Might as well start off with a christmassy book and this book is the christmassy-iest (?) of them all. Twelve romantic christmas tales written by some of my favourite authors with a stunning cover to boot? Yes, please!

2) Sabriel by Garth Nix – This one has been on my TBR list for a long time and I finally got it last month for my birthday. There is a magical boarding school, dead people who won’t stay dead and a talking cat…its all I ever wanted.

3) The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson – I have heard so many great things about this book and it does sound like a fantastic fantasy novel and world so I am very excited to sit down on a (hopefully) snowy day and give this a read.

4) The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins – I just saw Mockingjay last weekend and since watching it I have had a major urge to re-read this series so that is exactly what I plan on doing this Christmas.

5) Pretties by Scott Westerfeld – This book has been on my shelf for ages and I just haven’t gotten around to read it! I am such a fail but it shall be done this December! It shall, I say!

6) Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor – I AM SO EXCITED TO READ THIS I MIGHT DIE FROM THE ANTICIPATION ALONE. *Clears Throat, Tries to be cool* NOPE! TOO EXCITED! KAROUUUUUUU!

7) Throne of Glass Series by Sarah J Mass – Another re-read but I don’t care! I’m already suffering from Celaena “BAMF” Sardothien withdrawals.

8) Code Name: Verity by Elizabeth Wein – This is another book that has been on my TBR list for a very long time and I just got it for my birthday and I can’t wait to read it. The summary is amazing and I think this is going to be a very powerful, very sad book. Perfect for Christmas!

9) Half-Bad by Sally Green – Another book that has been on my bookshelf for months! But i do plan on reading it in December! Swear!

10) A Clash of Kings by George R. R. Martin I am a big fan of the TV series and I read the first book about two years ago but I just never got around to picking up the sequel but this Christmas I will make this hunker my bitch. I am borrowing it from a friend and I will get it done!

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The Retribution of Mara Dyer: Audiobook Excerpt

retribution of mara dyerAuthor: Michelle Hodkin

Genre: Paranormal

Narrated by: Christy Romano

Summary: Mara Dyer wants to believe there’s more to the lies she’s been told. There is. She doesn’t stop to think about where her quest for the truth might lead. She should. She never had to imagine how far she would go for vengeance. She will now. Loyalties are betrayed, guilt and innocence tangle, and fate and chance collide in this shocking conclusion to Mara Dyer’s story. Retribution has arrived. (Via Audible.com)

Disclaimer: I was asked by Audible to post a chapter of the audiobook. I did not receive a copy of the audiobook nor have I heard or read the audiobook.

Buy Here: Audible.com

 

Audiobook Excerpt:

You can listen to Chapter Eight of The Retribution of Mara Dyer here

Book Review:

The Retribution of Mara Dyer is the final book in the Mara Dyer trilogy by Michelle Hodkin. The Mara Dyer series is a very interesting one for me because I know I like but if you asked me to explain it to you I wouldn’t have a clue what to say. It is safe to say that for most of this series I didn’t have a fucking clue about what was going on – the same goes for Retribution but still really enjoyed it. Yeah, let that sink in.

I really enjoyed this book. I love Michelle Hodkin’s writing, especially her dialogue! She does sassy and witty better than almost anyone else. The relationship and back and forth between Mara and Jamie is absolutely fantastic, so snarky and so funny. They have such a wonderful friendship. Of course, the relationship between Mara and Noah is quite addicting – they are so dysfunctional but I can’t help but want them together so I was quite happy with certain parts of this book *wink wink*

Mara too is one of my favourite protagonists, not because she’s particularly likeable but because she’s complex and multifaceted and she’s very aware of her own darkness and I loved her growth in this book and her acceptance of herself. I thought it was wonderful. (She is annoying at times, yes, but so is everybody.)

Overall, I was really happy with this book. A lot of questions were answered, it was funny, it was sweet and it was fucked up – everything you expect from Mara Dyer but it was not the most satisfying of endings. There are a lot of loose ends left, a lot of questions that I wanted answers to that we just didn’t get and I was a bit disappointed by that – I just needed a few more chapters but alas no.

While I did enjoy Retribution it’s not the most satisfying of conclusions. I am still slightly confused but what else did I expect? It’s Mara Dyer.

4 Stars.

The Hunger Game: Mockingjay Part 1: Movie Review

MOCKING

 

 

Director: Francis Lawrence

Distributer: Lionsgate

Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Julianne Moore, Donald Sutherland, Natalie Dormer, Sam Claflin, Willow Shields, Phillip Seymour Hoffman.

Summary: With the Games now destroyed and in pieces, Katniss Everdeen, along with Gale, Finnick and Beetee, now end up in the so thought “destroyed” District 13. Under the leadership of President Coin and the advice of her friends, Katniss becomes the “Mockingjay” and the symbol of rebellion for the people (Via IMDB)

 

Review:

So, last Wednesday I went to the midnight premiere of The Hunger Game: Mockingjay Part 1 and I will be completely honest: I expected to fall asleep. It wasn’t that I expected the movie to be bad it was just that I had a pretty hectic day, I’d been up since six spent five hours travelling and had barely eaten: I expected to fall asleep. I did not.

I really enjoyed this film. I don’t really think that they needed to split Mockingjay into two films but I can’t deny that they did a good job with this one. What really made it work for me is that we cut away from Katniss in District 13 and saw the effect of the Propos, we saw the people rebelling, stuff we obviously knew was happening but seeing it was really amazing and it was beautifully shot and acted by all the people involved.

Jennifer Lawrence as usual goes a great job as Katniss and Josh Hutcherson, who doesn’t have much screen time in this film, was sensational. He did a wonderful job as Peeta. The supporting cast of course was wonderful too, Philip Seymour Hoffman was terrific as Plutarch, Woody Harrelson as Haymitch but I was a bit disappointed by Julianne Moore, she played the role fine but I just didn’t get the feeling of concern from her that I felt like I should have. Natalie Dormer was fantastic in her role and I loved seeing her in this film, there was not enough Sam Clafin as Finnick and there was too much Liam Hemsworth as Gale. (Sorry, I just never liked Gale that much.)

I really enjoyed this film, it’s action packed and it’s emotional and despite the lack of Hunger Games it still holds your attention. In particular the Hanging Tree scene is magical and is one hell of a musical moment – I’d recommend the movie based on that scene alone.

There were a few things i didn’t like, the “If We Burn” scene just didn’t do it for me. I think it was because Jennifer Lawrence stumbled over or rolled her R on the burn and it just wound up making me laugh but the thing I hated the most was the treatment of Finnick’s backstory. It’s told as a distraction for the rescue of the other tributes and because we also get to see the rescue it felt like Finnick’s story – his very powerful, very tragic story, was pushed aside and nobody really cared.

Overall though, a very good movie. I’ll probably wind up seeing it again.

4 Stars.

October Book Haul

So, another month has passed and that can mean only one thing: I bought more books. Now, some people might see this as a problem to which I say t0 you: It could be drugs!

Most of these were actually gifts for my birthday so I didn’t spend that much! But let’s not focus on my sore bank balance let’s focus on the happiness that the books bring! So, here is what I bought/got in October!

darkest mindsAuthor: Alexandra Bracken

Publisher: Disney Hyperion

Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy

Summary: When Ruby woke up on her tenth birthday, something about her had changed. Something alarming enough to make her parents lock her in the garage and call the police. Something that gets her sent to Thurmond, a brutal government “rehabilitation camp.” She might have survived the mysterious disease that’s killed most of America’s children, but she and the others have emerged with something far worse: frightening abilities they cannot control.

Now sixteen, Ruby is one of the dangerous ones.

When the truth comes out, Ruby barely escapes Thurmond with her life. Now she’s on the run, desperate to find the one safe haven left for kids like her—East River. She joins a group of kids who escaped their own camp. Liam, their brave leader, is falling hard for Ruby. But no matter how much she aches for him, Ruby can’t risk getting close. Not after what happened to her parents.

When they arrive at East River, nothing is as it seems, least of all its mysterious leader. But there are other forces at work, people who will stop at nothing to use Ruby in their fight against the government. Ruby will be faced with a terrible choice, one that may mean giving up her only chance at a life worth living. (Via Goodreads.)

defianceAuthor: CJ Redwine

Publisher: Balzer + Bray

Genre: Fantasy

Summary: While the other girls in the walled city-state of Baalboden learn to sew and dance, Rachel Adams learns to track and hunt. While they bend like reeds to the will of their male Protectors, she uses hers for sparring practice.

When Rachel’s father fails to return from a courier mission and is declared dead, the city’s brutal Commander assigns Rachel a new Protector: her father’s apprentice, Logan—the boy she declared her love to and who turned her down two years before. Left with nothing but fierce belief in her father’s survival, Rachel decides to escape and find him herself.

As Rachel and Logan battle their way through the Wasteland, stalked by a monster that can’t be killed and an army of assassins out for blood, they discover romance, heartbreak, and a truth that will incite a war decades in the making. (Via Goodreads.)

days of bloodAuthor: Laini Taylor

Publisher: Little, Brown Books

Genre: Fantasy

Summary: Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love and dared to imagine a world free of bloodshed and war.

This is not that world.

Art student and monster’s apprentice Karou finally has the answers she has always sought. She knows who she is—and what she is. But with this knowledge comes another truth she would give anything to undo: She loved the enemy and he betrayed her, and a world suffered for it.

In this stunning sequel to the highly acclaimed Daughter of Smoke & Bone, Karou must decide how far she’ll go to avenge her people. Filled with heartbreak and beauty, secrets and impossible choices, Days of Blood & Starlight finds Karou and Akiva on opposing sides as an age-old war stirs back to life.

While Karou and her allies build a monstrous army in a land of dust and starlight, Akiva wages a different sort of battle: a battle for redemption. For hope.

But can any hope be salvaged from the ashes of their broken dream? (Via Goodreads)

afterworlds scott westerfelfAuthor: Scott Westerfeld

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Genre: Contemporary/Fantasy

Summary: Darcy Patel has put college and everything else on hold to publish her teen novel, Afterworlds. Arriving in New York with no apartment or friends she wonders whether she’s made the right decision until she falls in with a crowd of other seasoned and fledgling writers who take her under their wings…

Told in alternating chapters is Darcy’s novel, a suspenseful thriller about Lizzie, a teen who slips into the ‘Afterworld’ to survive a terrorist attack. But the Afterworld is a place between the living and the dead and as Lizzie drifts between our world and that of the Afterworld, she discovers that many unsolved – and terrifying – stories need to be reconciled. And when a new threat resurfaces, Lizzie learns her special gifts may not be enough to protect those she loves and cares about most. (Via Goodreads.)

sabrielAuthor: Garth Nix

Publisher: HarperCollins

Genre: Fantasy

Summary: Sent to a boarding school in Ancelstierre as a young child, Sabriel has had little experience with the random power of Free Magic or the Dead who refuse to stay dead in the Old Kingdom. But during her final semester, her father, the Abhorsen, goes missing, and Sabriel knows she must enter the Old Kingdom to find him. She soon finds companions in Mogget, a cat whose aloof manner barely conceals its malevolent spirit, and Touchstone, a young Charter Mage long imprisoned by magic, now free in body but still trapped by painful memories. As the three travel deep into the Old Kingdom, threats mount on all sides. And every step brings them closer to a battle that will pit them against the true forces of life and death—and bring Sabriel face-to-face with her own destiny.

With Sabriel, the first installment in the Abhorsen trilogy, Garth Nix exploded onto the fantasy scene as a rising star, in a novel that takes readers to a world where the line between the living and the dead isn’t always clear—and sometimes disappears altogether. (Via Goodreads.)

trial by fireAuthor: Josephine Angelini

Publisher: Mcmillian Children’s Books

Genre: Fantasy

Summary: This world is trying to kill Lily Proctor. Her life-threatening allergies keep her from enjoying experiences that others in her hometown of Salem take for granted, which is why she is determined to enjoy her first high school party with her best friend and longtime crush, Tristan. But after a humiliating incident in front of half her graduating class, Lily wishes she could just disappear.

Suddenly, Lily is in a different Salem—one overrun with horrifying creatures and ruled by powerful women called Crucibles. Strongest and cruelest of them all is Lillian . . . Lily’s other self in this alternate universe.

What makes Lily weak at home is what makes her extraordinary in New Salem. In this confusing world, Lily is torn between responsibilities she can’t hope to shoulder alone and a love she never expected. (Via Goodreads.

code name verityAuthor: Elizabeth Wein

Publisher: Electric Monkey

Genre: Historical Fiction

Summary: Oct. 11th, 1943-A British spy plane crashes in Nazi-occupied France. Its pilot and passenger are best friends. One of the girls has a chance at survival. The other has lost the game before it’s barely begun.

When “Verity” is arrested by the Gestapo, she’s sure she doesn’t stand a chance. As a secret agent captured in enemy territory, she’s living a spy’s worst nightmare. Her Nazi interrogators give her a simple choice: reveal her mission or face a grisly execution.

As she intricately weaves her confession, Verity uncovers her past, how she became friends with the pilot Maddie, and why she left Maddie in the wrecked fuselage of their plane. On each new scrap of paper, Verity battles for her life, confronting her views on courage, failure and her desperate hope to make it home. But will trading her secrets be enough to save her from the enemy. (Via Goodreads)

sweet evilAuthor: Wendy Higgins

Publisher: HarperTeen

Genre: Paranormal

Summary: Embrace the Forbidden

What if there were teens whose lives literally depended on being bad influences?

This is the reality for sons and daughters of fallen angels.
Tenderhearted Southern girl Anna Whitt was born with the sixth sense to see and feel emotions of other people. She’s aware of a struggle within herself, an inexplicable pull toward danger, but it isn’t until she turns sixteen and meets the alluring Kaidan Rowe that she discovers her terrifying heritage and her willpower is put to the test. He’s the boy your daddy warned you about. If only someone had warned Anna.

Forced to face her destiny, will Anna embrace her halo or her horns? (Via Goodreads)

And those are all the books I got in October! Hope you guys had a great book buying month too!

Top Ten Characters You Wish Would Get Their OWN Book

toptentuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. Each week they post a new top ten list and invite bloggers to answer it. This weeks is Top Ten Characters You Wish Would Get Their OWN Book. Without further ado, here is my list.

1) Jamie Roth from the Mara Dyer Series by Michelle Hodkin – I adore Jamie! He’s so funny and so sarcastic and I’d love to read more about him either before or after Mara came into his life.

2) The Marauders from Harry Potter by JK Rowling – I WANT THIS SO BADLY! I think everyone wants more information about James, Lily, Sirius and Lupin during their time at Hogwarts. Damnit Rowling just give the people what they want!

3) Charlotte Fairchild from The Infernal Device by Cassandra Clare – Charlotte, dear people, is a BAMF and I want to read more about her. Hopefully, she’ll appear again in The Lost Hours.

4) Alex from the Delirium series by Lauren Oliver – Yeah there wasn’t enough Alex in these books. I wouldn’t mind a detailed description of what he was doing during those last two books, or after, or before.

5) The Darkling from The Grisha Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo – The Darkling is one of the only villains I’ve actually sort of rooted for! I know it’s messed up but he was all mysterious and sexy. I couldn’t help myself and I would like to know a great deal more about him.

6) Arobynn Hammel from Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas – He is one of the most manipulative and vindictive characters in the Throne of Glass world and one of the most important people in Celaena’s life so I wouldn’t mind spending some more quality time with him.

7) Ress from Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas – I want this because I think it would be hilarious. You just know that Ress knows Celaena and Chaol are sneaking off together! I’d love to read a novella from his POV about how obvious they are.

8) Celia Bowen from the Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern – I know she’s technically a main character but she shared the POV with Marco who I didn’t particularly care for so I would like more Celia please – particularly stories about her early life!

9) Isaac from The Fault In Our Stories by John Green – I needed more from him. I’d love to get a novella or short story from his POV after Gus’s death or after Hazel’s death. It be the most depressing thing in the world but I want to know!

10) THE FREAKING MARAUDERS BY JK ROWLING – JUST GIVE IT TO ME.

give_it_to_me_stephen_colbert

The Retribution of Mara Dyer: Review

retribution of mara dyerAuthor: Michelle Hodkin

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Genre: Paranormal

Summary: Mara Dyer wants to believe there’s more to the lies she’s been told.
There is.

She doesn’t stop to think about where her quest for the truth might lead.
She should.

She never had to imagine how far she would go for vengeance.
She will now.

Loyalties are betrayed, guilt and innocence tangle, and fate and chance collide in this shocking conclusion to Mara Dyer’s story.
Retribution has arrived. (Via Goodreads.)

Review:

The Retribution of Mara Dyer is the final book in the Mara Dyer trilogy by Michelle Hodkin. The Mara Dyer series is a very interesting one for me because I know I like but if you asked me to explain it to you I wouldn’t have a clue what to say. It is safe to say that for most of this series I didn’t have a fucking clue about what was going on – the same goes for Retribution but still really enjoyed it. Yeah, let that sink in.

I really enjoyed this book. I love Michelle Hodkin’s writing, especially her dialogue! She does sassy and witty better than almost anyone else. The relationship and back and forth between Mara and Jamie is absolutely fantastic, so snarky and so funny. They have such a wonderful friendship. Of course, the relationship between Mara and Noah is quite addicting – they are so dysfunctional but I can’t help but want them together so I was quite happy with certain parts of this book *wink wink*

Mara too is one of my favourite protagonists, not because she’s particularly likeable but because she’s complex and multifaceted and she’s very aware of her own darkness and I loved her growth in this book and her acceptance of herself. I thought it was wonderful. (She is annoying at times, yes, but so is everybody.)

Overall, I was really happy with this book. A lot of questions were answered, it was funny, it was sweet and it was fucked up – everything you expect from Mara Dyer but it was not the most satisfying of endings. There are a lot of loose ends left, a lot of questions that I wanted answers to that we just didn’t get and I was a bit disappointed by that – I just needed a few more chapters but alas no.

While I did enjoy Retribution it’s not the most satisfying of conclusions. I am still slightly confused but what else did I expect? It’s Mara Dyer.

4 Stars.

Sweet Evil: Review

sweet evilAuthor: Wendy Higgins

Publisher: HarperTeen

Genre: Fantasy/Paranormal

Summary: Embrace the Forbidden

What if there were teens whose lives literally depended on being bad influences?

This is the reality for sons and daughters of fallen angels.
Tenderhearted Southern girl Anna Whitt was born with the sixth sense to see and feel emotions of other people. She’s aware of a struggle within herself, an inexplicable pull toward danger, but it isn’t until she turns sixteen and meets the alluring Kaidan Rowe that she discovers her terrifying heritage and her willpower is put to the test. He’s the boy your daddy warned you about. If only someone had warned Anna.

Forced to face her destiny, will Anna embrace her halo or her horns? (Via Goodreads.)

Review:

I went into Sweet Evil expecting something kinda cheesy, kinda cringey; something in the vein of Richelle Mead – a little bad but oh, so good. I did not get that. I really did not like this book.

I knew going into it the book was going to be cheesy and I liked the cheesy plot line but I just hated the characters. I just felt nothing for them. I found them stilted and unlikeable. I didn’t like the romance, I didn’t believe in it. I was just immensely disappointed by it all.

The plot too (I liked the over all idea – son of lust, daughter of angel/demon – could have been amazing ) but Higgins execution of it just left me wanting. It was like so much happened yet nothing happened. I was at the final page of the book but I felt like nothing important had happened and yet I felt like I had been reading for ages! Just, no. This book was not for me.

However – I am curious about what happens. I have heard that this series improves so I am slightly open to giving it another go. Just, not yet. Not anytime soon.

2 Stars.