Saturday, 30 August 2014

Third Review!

2014 has been a slow blogging year so far I keep getting into little slumps so I'm hoping to up my game for the last quarter!
May~July in Numbers
Total posts= 23
Books read= 18
Reviews Posted= 9
Favourite Books!
May~ Nantucket Red by Leila Howland.
June~ Tribute by Ellen Renner.
July~ Massive tie. The One by Kiera Cass/Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo/My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzgerald.
What I've Read!
What I've Reviewed!
More Than Music by Elizabeth Briggs.
What I Posted!
Quarterly Check Up!

 Did I Achieve my goals?...
Monthly reviews~ Whoops not at all!
Consistency~ Close but not quite I managed 10 in June!
2nd Blogiversary~ Yay! I did this one :)
Monthly reviews~ Once again I will be bringing these back! August is already scheduled.
Consistency~ With my new course starting up soon (eek!) I want to keep my blog running smoothly.
Social Media~ I've been trying to keep up with Twitter and I've started using Instagram so make sure to follow me! Instagram
How was your May/June/July?
Much Love!

Friday, 29 August 2014

The One by Kiera Cass (No Spoilers!)

THE SELECTION changed the lives of thirty-five girls forever. Now, only one will claim Prince Maxon’s heart…
It’s swoon meets the Hunger Games in the third instalment of THE SELECTION series!
For the four girls who remain at the palace, the friendships they’ve formed, rivalries they’ve struggled with and dangers they’ve faced have bound them to each other for the rest of their lives.
Now, the time has come for one winner to be chosen.
America never dreamed she would find herself anywhere close to the crown – or to Prince Maxon’s heart. But as the competition approaches its end and the threats outside the palace walls grow more vicious, America realises just how much she stands to lose – and how hard she’ll have to fight for the future she wants.

I loved The Selection and The Elite. so I've been patiently waiting for The One!
I've had to do one of my love/hate reviews as I want to keep it as concise and spoiler free as possible!
What I loved:
Sisterhood- I loved how the sisterhood camaraderie Queen Amberley has with the previous Selection really took hold with the remaining girls. They definitely started to see themselves as a family rather than rivals and I loved how they started to share their true opinions with each other.
Twists- The One had so many twists it was a roller coaster! Some were tragic, some intriguing and some seemed so obvious afterwards. I loved how surprising and riveting this book was.
Triangle- I was initially put off this series by the idea of a love triangle however I think Kiera made it more than other love triangles. Neither Maxon or Aspen 'won' America or completely wrote themselves off. I loved that America didn't feel she had to pick one of them either, she could simply go home alone!
America- America grew more confident and compassionate throughout the series. I found her to always be fair and just, I loved how she encouraged the people to stand up for themselves not to hide away. Again I did find her frustrating because she had decided on who she loved ages ago but just wouldn't say!!
Maxon- Just continued to surprise me! I loved how attentive he was to each of the girls and how he thought out each move he made. After the revelations of The Elite it was interesting to see how he interacted with his father, he could have been more outspoken at times but Maxon is a quiet strength. As the book went on you could see glimpses of the King he would become.
Celeste- I couldn't stand her in the previous books but in The One she really opened up to America and the other girls. I liked how she admitted and apologised for all her sabotages. I grew to love her tenacity and her new found friendship with the others made the sisterhood lovely. I especially loved her friendship and support of America.
Rebels- I felt like I finally understood the difference between the Southern and the Northern rebels and I enjoyed all the twists and turns they provided.
The book had a huge climax at the end but I was left with questions about the rebels and their motives.
Side cast- America's family were all lovely and individual, I loved getting to know them better. America's bond with her father explained were she got her belief in equality and justice. I spent the whole book highly suspicious of Kota! He was just so rude and harsh to everyone. The maids were great companions and I enjoyed their interactions with America, Aspen and Maxon. I especially liked how devoted they were to America, for her kind personality rather than out of duty. Maxon's parents were so different from each other. The King was increasingly controlling and aggressive towards America. He didn't seem to understand that Maxon would be King after him and held a lot of important information back. Queen Amberley on the other hand was absolutely lovely. She was very maternal and supportive as the number of girls left diminished. I'm so glad she's getting her own novella.

The perfect end to a great series. However Kiera Cass has announced more Selection! The next book is called The Heir so I think it's safe to say this book was the perfect end to America's journey as a self aware champion for the lower castes. I have thoroughly enjoyed this series and I've already been rereading it!

Did you love The One?
Look out for my upcoming series review!
Much Love!

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Torn Away by Jennifer Brown.

Jersey Cameron has always loved a good storm. Watching the clouds roll in and the wind pick up. Smelling the electricity in the air. Dancing barefoot in the rain. She lives in the Midwest, after all, where the weather is sure to keep you guessing. Jersey knows what to do when the tornado sirens sound. But she never could have prepared for this.
When her town is devastated by a tornado, Jersey loses everything. As she struggles to overcome her grief, she's sent to live with relatives she hardly knows-family who might as well be strangers. In an unfamiliar place, can Jersey discover that even on the darkest of days, there are some things no tornado can destroy?

Torn Away is a thought provoking emotive book. It revolves around a difficult emotional subject and asked the all important question, what does happen after your life has been devastated? 
Jersey was a very determined and brave lead character. I admired how she stayed strong despite the awful circumstances, mean relatives and uncertainty.  I especially liked how she dealt with disappointing family and friends.
I found Ronnie to be quite selfish and mean. To begin with I could see his logic but his decisions were just cruel and high-handed. I really felt for Jersey as his betrayal and dismissal on top of the tornado would have be devastating. Dani, her best friend, didn't seem to grasp how awful Jersey's situation was which I think may have been due to the fact she wasn't too affected by the tornado. Dani's Mum seemed to be very self absorbed and unwilling to inconvenience herself to help out.
Jersey's experience in Caster City was harshly realistic. Her family were very rude and unsympathetic. I did like Terry and how kind she was to Jersey. 
Waverley provided a much more stable home for Jersey. I loved the journey she went on to build relationships and rebuild her life.
Kolby was my favourite character other than Jersey. He was strong, supportive and brave. I spent a lot of the book worried over him though!
Torn Away is a character driven book with a focus on Jersey's journey through the confusion of a devastating natural disaster, unknown family members and an uncertain future. I loved the character growth and development and the hopeful conclusion.

Such an emotional and refreshing book that asks the questions what happens after the 'worst disaster'? How do you move on? I will definitely be looking out for more of Jennifer's books.

Have you read Torn Away?
Much Love!

Thursday, 7 August 2014

After The Storm by Marie Landry.

For most people, starting senior year at a new high school would be a nightmare, but for Ella O’Dell it’s the new beginning she desperately needs. Two months after her mother’s death, she’s ready to leave behind the rebellious, unhappy person she became when she found out her mom was dying.
When Ella meets River Maracle and Sadie Fitzgerald, she begins to learn it’s okay to be herself, even if that means being different. River and Sadie aren’t ashamed of their misfit status—River grew up on a reservation, and his mother is the school counselor; Sadie stands out with her funky homemade clothes, and is a master at ignoring the whispered rumors that have plagued her since the beginning of high school.
Ella finds a kindred spirit in Sadie, and something more in River. After almost a year of pretending to be someone she’s not, she finally embraces life and allows herself to have fun without constant guilt. But despite her budding happiness, something is off with her new life. She doesn’t want to dwell on the past, but Angel Island is a small place, and she soon realizes her demons are harder to outrun than she thought…

Ella was very hard to like in Waiting for the Storm and actually she was the one thing I disliked so I was apprehensive of her being the lead character in this book. I was pleasantly surprised! Ella's point of view gave such a clear insight into how and why she behaved the way she did. I admired how she recognised she needed to change who she had become, although she was a overly critical of herself at times. I liked seeing Charlotte and Ezra's relationship in Ella's point of view and how she reconnected with Charlotte. I also loved how Ezra treated her like a sister, overlooking her previous behaviour and  looking out for her.
I absolutely loved the misfit trio, Sadie, River and Ella were quite different but united by their personal tragedies. Sadie was lovely and so welcoming to Ella, I loved how she encouraged Ella. Sadie's background was very harsh and confusing but she had remained upbeat and unique which I admired. River seemed so mysterious to begin with but actually was very open with Ella and very good at listening to her. I loved how their relationship developed slowly. It was great to see the Angel Island community again and I liked seeing how Charlotte, Ella and their Dad were slowly moving on with their lives positively.  

Ella really surprised me and I loved the Angel Island community and life outside of summer.
Thank you to Marie Landry for gifting me a copy of After The Storm.

Have you read the Angel Island books?
Much Love!

Sunday, 3 August 2014

Stacking The Shelves: July.

What is Stacking The Shelves all about?
Stacking The Shelves is hosted by Tynga all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!
Welcome to my monthly Stacking the Shelves! I finally managed a restrained Review and E-book month but I went a bit crazy with 'real' books.
Actual Shelf!
 Shadow and Bone, Siege and Storm and Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo~ I brought Shadow and Bone as it caught my eye and once I started it I knew I needed to get the next two. Luckily during the three days they had been put on buy one get one half price!
Since You've Been Gone by Morgan Matson~ The main reason I went to the bookshop! I needed Morgan's new book!
The Winner's Curse by Marie Rutkoski~ I loved this book and it's got such a gorgeous cover once I saw it was on offer I had to get it for my shelf!
The Selection Stories by Kiera Cass~ I finally gave in and got this from Amazon as I've been looking out for it for awhile.

NetGalley Shelf!
 Hopefully ARC August will lead to speedy reviews!
What joined your shelves in July?
Much Love!

Saturday, 2 August 2014

TBR: Arc August.

Arc August has officially started! I've put together a TBR of many NetGalley titles that I need to read. I'm hoping to read at least 10.

Which one do you think I should read first?

Be sure to check out my sign up post to see what else I've signed up for this August!
Much Love!

Friday, 1 August 2014

Beach Reads Giveaway!

I absolutely love summer reads! I like my summer reads to be summery (of course) and easy to read. I prefer when they have a deeper issue but light is fine too!

My new Beach Read favourites
Nantucket Blue by Leila Howland.
Such a great blend of light sweet beach read and serious contemporary! Cricket
Nantucket Red by Leila Howland.
I wasn't sure Nantucket Blue needed a sequel but Nantucket Red was so much more than a sequel. It built on all the personal growth aspects of NB and added that much needed resolution.
My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick.
This has been on my summer tbr for years and it had everything I love about American summer reads.
Torn Away by Jennifer Brown.
This isn't as 'light' as the others but it's still a good summer read.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Check out the rest of the Giveaways!

Thanks to Valerie from Stuck in Books for organising this giveaway! Check out her post and the other giveaways here.

Good Luck!
Much Love!