Thursday 30 June 2016

On McPig's Wishlist - The Awakened

The Awakened (The Awakened Duology #1)
by Sara Elizabeth Santana

Zoey Valentine is concerned with two things: surviving the multitude of self-defense classes her dad makes her take and avoiding Ash Matthews.

That is, until the Z virus hits, wiping out a third of the population in a matter of weeks. If that weren’t frightening enough, the bodies of the victims disappear and suddenly reappear, awakened from their dead state. They're faster, smarter, and they work together to get the one thing they crave, human flesh.

The United States is in a panic and then the government decides the unthinkable: to bomb every major city overrun with the awakened.

Now Zoey is on the run, with her dad and Ash, desperate to find a place of safety amongst the ruined remains of the country.

Wednesday 29 June 2016

The Sunshine Blogger Award

Josie Jaffrey nominated me for The Sunshine Blogger Award.
If you haven't read anything by Josie yet, you should: Her Solis Invicti series is a really cool post-apocalyptic series with vampires!

The Sunshine Blogger Award is a sort of electronic chain letter (for those who are old enough to remember when communication by mail required stamps) and is given to those who are inspiring and bring sunshine into the lives of their readers and fellow bloggers through their blogspace and/or their social media.

The Rules

The Sunshine Blogger Award does not operate in an atmosphere of chaos, ergo there are rules as follows:
- Name drop and link to the blog of the person who nominated you.
- Answer the eleven questions from the blogger who nominated you.
- Nominate up to eleven wonderful bloggers and write (or borrow/steal) eleven questions for them to answer.

The questions Josie gave me & my answers

1. Who's your weird celebrity crush and why?

Hmmm... Wierd celebrity crush...
Voodoo Bride's crush would be The Hound in Game of Thrones.
I myself can't think of a celebrity, so does Cassandra from Dragon Age Inquisition count? I love Cassandra! She's a strong woman, a leader and fighter, with a love for Fantasy Romance books. Or would it be Contemporary Romance for her, as she lives in a Fantasy world?

2. You can only watch one film, as many times as you like, for the rest of your life. What do you choose?

Evil question!!!! How can I pick just one?
Does the Star Wars series count as one? Probably not...
The Shawshank Redemption 28 Days Later Labyrinth The Princess Bride...

I think...

3. How many of you does it take to change a lightbulb?

None. I leave work like that to my owner.

4. Coffee or tea?

I can't stomach coffee, although I'm not much of a tea drinker either I'll confess.

5. What's the best gig/play you've ever seen?

I think that would be Tanzwut, unless World Fantasy Con in Brighton counts as a gig.

6. You can go anywhere in the world, in any time period, with any person (living or dead). Where, when and with whom would you go?

I'd take Echnaton and Tsar Nicholas II to a pre-raphaelite art show and talk art with them. Should be interesting. Echnaton had some strong ideas about realism in art, and Nicholas was quite the artist himself.

7. What are you reading at the moment and how are you finding it?

Underground by S.L. Grey.
It's about a group of people who lock themselves in an underground complex to be save from a deadly super-flu. But then someone gets murdered...
It's a cool and suspenseful read so far.

8. Dragons or unicorns?

They're like dinosaurs that can fly and breath fire!

9. If you were a chart-topping recording star, what sort of music would you be making?

Either Punk Rock or Industrial

10. The entire world is shortly to be subjugated by a race of giant mutant ants. You have twelve hours before you are put to work in their colossal sugar factories. How do you spend your final hours of freedom?

I'd be fighting to overthrow the giant mutant ant regime until my last breath! Better to die on your feet, than to live on your knees! No ant will get any sugar from me if I can help it!

11. When you were ten, what did you want to be when you grew up?

Filthy rich! Ehm... I think I wanted to be a vet.

My Questions:

1. What is your favorite scary movie?
2. Zombies or Vampires?
3. What movie or book do you turn to if you want to be cheered up?
4. If you could be an animal for a day, what animal would you want to be?
5. There's a hippo chewing on your electrical wiring. What do you do?
6. What's the scariest thing you ever did?
7. Would you rather be king/queen or the power behind the throne?
8. You suddenly turned into a T-Rex. What's the first thing you're going to do?
9. Star Wars or Star Trek?
10. If you could star in a movie, what kind of movie would you want to be in?
11. What would be the title of your autobiography?

As for nominating:
I'm bad at nominating.
I'm going to put some names down here of people who I think are inspiring and bring sunshine into the lives of their readers and fellow bloggers, if you see your name and feel like answering my questions: go ahead, but if you don't want to, you don't have to.

Beanie Mouse

Tuesday 28 June 2016

Teaser Tuesdays - Underground

So far this is a cool, suspenseful read.

Maybe it's okay for fun in the sunlight, but down here, in the dark, with people like Brett and Cameron watching... no. I remember how they looked at me when we arrived, how I felt half naked.

(page 174, Underground by S.L. Grey)

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following: - Grab your current read - Open to a random page - Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!) - Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Monday 27 June 2016

A Bargain in Silver - Book Review

A Bargain in Silver (Solis Invicti, #1)
by Josie Jaffrey

What is it about:
If the price of safety is slavery, would you bargain your life?

A Bargain in Silver is book one of Josie Jaffrey's Solis Invicti paranormal romance series, set in a dystopian, post-apocalyptic London.

A deadly infection threatens to wipe out humanity. The only people who can stem its advance are the Silver, a vampiric race who offer a simple exchange: protection in return for blood and subservience. It's not a deal that Emmy's willing to make, but as her world burns around her she finds herself in the arms of the enemy and the line between oppressor and saviour begins to blur.

After an attack by the infected, Emmy is rescued by the handsome Drew who introduces her to the world of the Silver. Desperate to escape subjugation and confused by her attraction to him, she gathers what remains of her surrogate family and plans to make a break for freedom.

But despite her efforts to resist, she is drawn further into the intrigues of the mysterious Silver through the agency of their ruler, the Primus: Solomon. Emmy refuses to submit to the cold and detached Primus and an attempt on her life makes it clear that he is unable to protect her from the political machinations of his race.

As the connection between them deepens she must choose between her desire and her will to rebel, but can she trust his intentions when everyone is after her blood?

What did I think of it:
Mention post-apocalyptic and deadly infection in a blurb and you have my attention. So I was happy for a chance to read and review this book.

I will confess that the infected humans had a much too small part to play in this book in my opinion, but you know I love zombies, and zombie-like creatures.

That aside this is a really cool read.

Emmy is making decisions at times that I thought were much too rash, and dangerous. She really doesn't understand how much trouble the world and she herself are in. Still, she isn't a 'too stupid to live' heroine, more of a 'too ballsy and rash' heroine. But on the other hand she at least doesn't immediately give in to her attraction to what as far as she knows is a dangerous being. Overall she's an interesting, if at times tiring heroine.

I really liked the world building. The Silvers are very intriguing and their 'New World Order' frightening. I like that the Silvers have very different morals and think different than humans. It made them more alien and dangerous.

The story is gritty and Emmy has a hard time staying alive. There's a bit of a love/lust triangle going on, but I could understand why Emmy isn't willing to trust either guy, and is fighting her attraction to both.

All in all this is a suspenseful, cool read. I think it will appeal to both fans of UF and fans of post-apocalyptic reads.

Why should you read it:
It's a cool, post-apocalyptic read with vampires

Buy from Amazon

Friday 24 June 2016

Runemarks - Book Review (repost)

Runemarks (Runemarks #1)
by Joanne Harris

What is it about:
Seven o'clock, on a Monday morning, five hundred years after the end of the world, and goblins had been at the cellar again...

Maddy Smith was born with a rusty-coloured runemark on her hand - a symbol of the old gods and definitely cause for suspicion. For magic is dangerous. Or so everyone thinks. But Maddy enjoys working magic. Even if it is just to control some pesky goblins. And every time her friend, One-Eye - a good-for-nowt Outlander - comes by, he teaches her more and more about the gods and the runes. Now he wants Maddy to open Red Horse Hill and descend into World Below to retrieve a relic of the old gods. Otherwise it is likely to be the End of Everything.


What did I think of it:
This is a really great read.

For anyone familiar with the Norse mythology it will not come as a surprise who Maddy's one-eyed friend is of course, but that only made me more curious to read the book, to see how Harris uses Norse mythology in her book.

And she does this wonderfully. I was pleasantly surprised to find she has much the same view of the Norse gods as I do, and this made the already very cool and suspenseful story even more enjoyable.

The point of view switches from Maddy to some of the other characters and this gives you a greater insight in what's going on. And there's a lot going on! Maddy is being used by multiple people and has to figure out who she can trust and who might stab her in the back.

I also really liked the new world order Harris created. The Order, which rules the world, is a sinister and mysterious organisation with it's own agenda. Next to using magic it's also forbidden to dream, which created a scary world in my opinion.

All in all this is a wonderful story, filled with intrigue, adventure and suspense. It can easily be read as a standalone, but you can bet I will be reading the sequel.

Why should you read it:
It's a really cool YA Fantasy read.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Thursday 23 June 2016

On McPig's Radar - SuperNova

SuperNova (Heroes of Arcania #1)
by Liz Long

The streets of Arcania are overrun with crime, deteriorating as a madman named Fortune makes himself at home. He shows no mercy, striking down anyone in his path – including Nova Benson’s little sister. Devastated, Nova vows to seek justice for her family, but aside from her freak strength and impenetrable skin, how is she supposed to stop a monster like Fortune?

Cole Warner wants to help people. Entrusted to keep his family’s secret, he’s also frustrated at having to hide his gift. He knows he could do more to help in the fight against Fortune. If he could convince his sister Penelope to join him, they might even have a chance at beating him. When Cole meets Nova, he realizes his whole world is about to change. And he’s going to welcome it with open arms.

Falling for each other wasn’t part of the plan.

Then again, neither was becoming a superhero.



Liz Long is a proud graduate of Longwood University. Her inspiration comes from action and thriller genres and she spends entirely too much time watching superhero movies. Her day job includes writing for a magazine publisher in Roanoke, VA.

The Donovan Circus series has best been described as "X-Men meets the circus." Adult horror story Witch Hearts tells the tale of a serial killer hunting witches for their powers. New Adult PNR A Reaper Made is about a teen Reaper who gets caught between falling in love or saving her sister's soul. All titles are available for paperback or ebook on Amazon.

To learn more about Liz (including more information on her books, plus writing, marketing, and social media tips), visit her website:

Wednesday 22 June 2016

Cold Blooded - Book Review (repost)

Cold Blooded (Jessica McClain #3)
by Amanda Carlson

What is it about:
Jessica arrives back in town to find her best friend missing and the most powerful witch in the country is blaming her for it. But before they can move to save her, the group is attacked.

On the run, Jessica and Rourke head to the mountains. Several surprises await them, but in order to save her father they are forced to leave for New Orleans early.

Arriving on the Vampire Queen's doorstep unexpectedly, and bringing trouble on their heels, the Sects are thrown into an all out war. The vicious
skirmish ends up forcing the vamps and Jessica to fight on the same team.

The Vamp Queen ends up owing Jessica, but what Jessica doesn't realize is just how soon she'll have to cash it in...

What did I think of it:
This series is getting better and better.

Did I have my doubts about liking Jessica at the start of Full Blooded, I love her now. She's a cool and fun heroine even though she still seems a bit too powerful at times. I also really loved that Rourke had a bigger role in this book compared to the previous book. I think Jessica and Rourke make a perfect team and I very much enjoyed getting to know Rourke better. The scenes between Jessica and Rourke were my favorites I will confess.

The story is intense and full of action. Just when you think Jessica gets a chance to take stock of the situation and recover she and her friends are thrown into danger again. I was on the edge of my seat for most of the book.

I like how not only Jessica is growing into her powers over the course of this series, but how other characters are developing and changing as well. Apart from Tyler (Jessica's brother, who I just don't like for some reason) I really like the team Jessica has surrounded herself with, and I'm curious what will happen next for them.

The ending was another major cliffhanger, but while this annoyed me a bit in the first book, I didn't mind it in Cold Blooded. It tells me the next book will be another cool, action-packed adventure and it hinted deliciously at the things and dangers yet to come.

Why should you read it:
It's a thrilling and cool Urban fantasy read

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Tuesday 21 June 2016

Teaser Tuesdays - The Dinosaur Lords

I'm not reading much at the moment and multiple books. So I'm still working on getting through this book as well. so far I'm enjoying it, but there could be more dinosaurs I think.

Rob emptied his cup. "This won't end well," he said to Karyl.
"It's a mercenary job," Karyl said. "They don't end well. You should know that by now."

(page 325, The Dinosaur Lords by Victor Milan)

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following: - Grab your current read - Open to a random page - Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!) - Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Monday 20 June 2016

Quick Book Reviews

Some books I never got round to review, but read so long ago I can't remember the details to write a longer review about them

Hell Fire (Corine Solomon #2) by Ann Aguirre
A very nice read, but I totally read this series out of order, and the later books are so much better. Still I really recommend this series.

Ill Wind (Weather Warden #1) by Rachel Caine
A really cool read. I love Caine's writing and world building. I have other books in this series in my TBR pile, and really should read them soon.

Where the Deep Ones Are by Kenneth Hite and Andy Hopp
A fun Lovecraftian parody of Where The Wild Things Are. Recommended to anyone who is familiar with Lovecraft's work, and especially The Shadow Over Innsmouth

The Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks
A must have for all fans of zombie apocalypse stories. This book will tell you how to survive!

Friday 17 June 2016

Entwined - Book Review (repost)

by Heather Dixon

What is it about:
Azalea is trapped. Just when she should feel that everything is before her . . . beautiful gowns, dashing suitors, balls filled with dancing . . . it's taken away. All of it.

The Keeper understands. He's trapped, too, held for centuries within the walls of the palace. And so he extends an invitation.

Every night, Azalea and her eleven sisters may step through the enchanted passage in their room to dance in his silver forest.

But there is a cost.

The Keeper likes to "keep" things.

Azalea may not realize how tangled she is in his web until it is too late.

What did I think of it:
I love fairytales, so when I read that Entwined is a retelling of one of my favorite fairytales, 'The Twelve Dancing Princesses', I just had to read it.

It turned out to be an enjoyable read.

I will confess I had hoped the story would be a bit darker, a bit more seductive. When The Keeper was first introduced I was looking forward to Azalea being drawn in by his charms. That was not to be. From the start The Keeper is cast as too creepy to ever really make it believable that Azalea is even the least bit smitten by him and even for those unfamiliar with the original fairytale it's more than obvious who Azalea will end up with.

Now usually I'm not much for love triangles and such, but this tale could have profited from a bit more duality in my opinion. The romance was tame and flat.

I did enjoy the romantic storylines for Azalea's sisters Clover and Bramble I will confess and I actually wished at times that one of them had been the lead character of the book.

I also really loved the king. He's an intriguing character and I felt for him as he was trying to (re)connect with his willful daughters.

All in all this was a very nice read with little surprises, but that's what you get with retellings of course.

Why should you read it:
It's a nice retelling of a beautiful fairytale

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Thursday 16 June 2016

Teasing on a Thursday - A Bargain in Silver

Just started on this.
I think I'm really going to like this book.

My name is Emilia, I'm twenty-eight and I'm still alive. I work as a barmaid at Sol's, a multi-roomed club in central London.

(page 5, A Bargain in Silver by Josie Jaffrey)

Buy from Amazon


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following: - Grab your current read - Open to a random page - Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!) - Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Wednesday 15 June 2016

This is Not a Test - Book Review (repost)

This is Not a Test
by Courtney Summers

What is it about:
It’s the end of the world. Six students have taken cover in Cortege High but shelter is little comfort when the dead outside won’t stop pounding on the doors. One bite is all it takes to kill a person and bring them back as a monstrous version of their former self. To Sloane Price, that doesn’t sound so bad. Six months ago, her world collapsed and since then, she’s failed to find a reason to keep going. Now seems like the perfect time to give up. As Sloane eagerly waits for the barricades to fall, she’s forced to witness the apocalypse through the eyes of five people who actually want to live. But as the days crawl by, the motivations for survival change in startling ways and soon the group’s fate is determined less and less by what’s happening outside and more and more by the unpredictable and violent bids for life—and death—inside. When everything is gone, what do you hold on to?

What did I think of it:
This was a really intense read.

I was a bit disappointed at first that the zombies were kind of background noise instead of them having a bigger role in the story, but that disappointment soon vanished.

Summers wrote a beautiful and grim story about human nature. Trapped in their school the six students have nothing to fall back on except each other. But there's conflict, mistrust and other emotions getting in the way of working together.

I really liked how Summers created tension between the students. It was very believable and there were moments I really wanted to whack some of them for their behavior.

I had some difficulties with Sloane. She's presented as someone who's already lost everything and wants to be done with living. For someone in that state she had lots of fight left in her and that made her character feel a bit off at times.

But that small criticism aside this is a great read that I can advice to anyone who loves a good story about human nature and about how people react when society falls away and they have to fight for survival.

This book will get a place on my keeper shelves and I will check out what other books Summers has written.

Why should you read it:
It's a grim and intense YA read.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Tuesday 14 June 2016

Damned If He Does - Cover Reveal

I'm proud to present you the cover reveal of
Damned If He Does by Marcella Burnard!

I love Marcella's books, and this one sounds like another awesome read. and isn't that cover amazing!?

It will release on July 19th, and you can bet I'll be reading it!

Damned If He Does
by Marcella Burnard

Rejected by heaven, twisted by hell, what’s a damned dead man to do when he stumbles upon a life and love worth fighting for?

Though damned for his earthly sins, Darsorin Incarri likes being an incubus. Prowling women’s dreams to siphon off their sexual energy for Satan's consumption has its perks: an array of infernal power and a modicum of freedom. Sure, Ole Scratch holds Dar’s soul in thrall, and Dar has to spend a few hours recharging in Hell every day, but it could be much worse. All he has to do is hold up his end of his damnation contract – five women seduced, satisfied and siphoned per night for eternity. So when he encounters gorgeous, bright, and funny Fiona Renee, it’s business as usual. Deploy the infernal charm and rack up another score. Except it doesn’t work. She’s immune. He has to find out what’s gone wrong or face Lucifer's wrath.

Fiona Renee has the life she’d always wanted: a career, a home, a cat with a bad attitude, and peace. Fiona’s dated. Had boyfriends. And hated every minute of it. She’s reconciled to being lonely. So when a man shows up in her bedroom in the middle of the night demanding to know why her dreams turn to nightmares every time he tries to seduce her from within them, Fiona winds up negotiating a contract with a demon that allows him access to her life. She never anticipated that it would also give him access to her heart. If she's going to fall in love at all, something she never thought would happen, shouldn’t it be with someone who’s alive? If Fiona wants to hang on to Darsorin, she has to find his true name—the one he’d been given at his birth over a thousand years ago. But Satan, himself, stands in her way. Even if Fiona can dodge Lucifer, she and Darsorin have to face the question neither of them can answer: What happens to a dead man if you manage to wrest his soul from the Devil?

Marcella's website

Monday 13 June 2016

Zom-B Clans - Book Review

Zom-B Clans (Zom-B #8)
by Darren Shan

What is it about:
B's first mission with the Angels --sentient, do-gooder zombies-- went horribly wrong when vicious members of the Ku Klux Klan attacked New Kirkham, a stronghold of precious human survivors. B is not about to let the racist thugs persecute innocent people, but while saving the town, one of B's oldest friends is kidnapped by the Klan.

The Angels are prepared to do what it takes to save him, but B will have to make some very hard decisions about loyalties--to old friends, to the Angels, and to new families and old.

What did I think of it:
Another cool zombie read.

An old friend of B gets kidnapped and B has the opportunity to save him and others. But is it worth saving people if that means you might be endangering others?

I like how Shan manages to add serious issues into a story full of fights and zombie mayhem without those issues dragging the story down. It all fits perfectly together. B is learning and growing up, but she makes mistakes at times. After how this book ended I'm curious to see if B will continue to grow or if certain events will make her fall back.

I'm also still waiting to see if some of my suspicions will prove to be true.

All in all a fun, action packed book that also challenges you to think.

Why should you read it:
It's a very entertaining zombie series.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Friday 10 June 2016

Enemy Mine - Book Review by Voodoo Bride (repost)

Enemy Mine (Enemy #2.5)
by Marcella Burnard


What is it about:
It was a priority-two alert for beautiful Commander Cashel Khaleize: a contract put out on the life of Xiao Zhong. Professionally, Xiao was the Captain she reported to. Personally, he was man she desired. But as female Guild Assassin Mekise Tollenga closes in, Xiao wonders if even Cashel can be trusted with his safety. And with a tenuous bond between them, Cashel wonders how far she’s willing to go to earn that trust.

What did Voodoo Bride think of it:
This is a delightfully hot story.

Cashel and Xiao are great characters and I enjoyed the developing romance between them. For a novella the character development and the romance were very well worked out and believable. I sometimes felt neither of them took the treat of the assassin serious though, but with the sizzling hot sexual tension between them I couldn't blame them too much.

There's a slight BDSM element to this story that I very much enjoyed, but that's light enough to not scare away readers who are not into BDSM.

I do wish this story had been a little longer. I finished it much too soon and wouldn't have minded if the tension between Xiao and Cashel had been drawn out a bit longer. But I feel that way about every good story, so don't mind me ;-)

Why should you read it:
It's a hot paranormal romance

Buy it here

Thursday 9 June 2016

On McPig's Wishlist - A Promise of Fire

This sounds like it might be a cool Fantasy Romance.

A Promise of Fire (Kingmaker Chronicles #1)
by Amanda Bouchet

Catalia "Cat" Fisa is a powerful clairvoyant known as the Kingmaker. This smart-mouthed soothsayer has no interest in her powers and would much rather fly under the radar, far from the clutches of her homicidal mother. But when an ambitious warlord captures her, she may not have a choice…

Griffin is intent on bringing peace to his newly conquered realm in the magic-deprived south. When he discovers Cat is the Kingmaker, he abducts her. But Cat will do everything in her power to avoid her dangerous destiny and battle her captor at every turn. Although up for the battle, Griffin would prefer for Cat to help his people willingly, and he's ready to do whatever it takes to coax her…even if that means falling in love with her.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Wednesday 8 June 2016

How to Destroy the New Girl's Killer Robot Army - Book Review

How to Destroy the New Girl's Killer Robot Army (Slug Pie Story #3)
by Mick Bogerman

What is it about:
When Savannah "Van Demon" Diamond comes to town she ruins everything for Mick. She takes over his favorite hang out, outruns him in gym class, and worst of the worst—his little brother has a crush on her. Devising a plan to get her kicked out of school and moved out of Beachwood is simple. Dealing with Savannah’s mind-blowing revenge is Mick’s most challenging adventure yet.

Join Mick as he thwarts insidious traps and deadly weaponry, fighting against the most cunning of enemies. Catastrophe looms for all of Beachwood unless Mick can put aside his pride, join forces with his rival, and destroy the new girl’s killer robot army.

What did I think of it:
I loved the first two book in this series, but I had trouble getting into this one at first.

It starts out as a typical boy vs. girl story, complete with name calling and nasty pranks. Ok, to be fair: there are robots as well!

Luckily the killer robot action kicks in and from there on out it was a very entertaining read.

All in all a nice read, but not one I'd reread anytime soon. I'd rather pick up one of the other books again.

Why should you read it:
It's an action-packed story with robots.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Tuesday 7 June 2016

Teaser Tuesdays - The Dinosaur Lords

Maybe it wasn't the best idea to pick up a book that's almost 600 pages long if I want to get through my TBR pile, but it was too tempting: knights on dinosaurs!

So far it's a cool story, although I'm hoping it will gain a bit more momentum.

Swinging her long balancing tail and powerful hips, Shiraa strode into the open. Fronds thrashed. Branches clashed. A flock of small tailless fliers exploded from the trees, azure and gold, raising raucous cries.

(page 68, The Dinosaur Lords by Victor Milan)

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following: - Grab your current read - Open to a random page - Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!) - Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Monday 6 June 2016

The Crown - Book Review

The Crown (The Selection #5)
by Kiera Cass

What is it about:
When Eadlyn became the first princess of IllĂ©a to hold her own Selection, she didn’t think she would fall in love with any of her thirty-five suitors. She spent the first few weeks of the competition counting down the days until she could send them all home. But as events at the palace force Eadlyn even further into the spotlight, she realizes that she might not be content remaining alone.

Eadlyn still isn’t sure she’ll find the fairytale ending her parents did twenty years ago. But sometimes the heart has a way of surprising you…and soon Eadlyn must make a choice that feels more impossible—and more important—than she ever imagined.

What did I think of it:
After reading The Heir I was sure I wouldn't pick up The Crown, I was that annoyed with The Heir. But then I read Happily Ever After (a collection of novellas) which I enjoyed, and that together with my curiosity about how this story would end made me decide to give The Crown a try after all.

And this book is much better than the previous one.

There's still a couple of things that made me grumble. For one: you don't introduce a character that has a big impact on a story in the second book of a duology.

Grumbles aside: I enjoyed this book a lot more than expected. Eadlyn is shaping up and taking action. I was pleasantly surprised to see she isn't falling for the guy I suspected when he was introduced in The Heir. Instead she's going for a guy I could actually root for.

There are some parts where I think the story stalled a bit, but the book gets better the farther in you get, and the ending was everything I hoped for, making up for the frustration that was The Heir.

All in all this is an enjoyable read and a nice ending to the whole Selection series. I will keep an eye out for other books by Cass.

Why should you read it:
It's a nice and enjoyable YA read.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Friday 3 June 2016

On Voodoo Bride's Radar - Through the Evergreens

If only we had all the time in the world to read, this would be a book Voodoo Bride would add to our TBR pile.

Through the Evergreens
by Karen Kay

On a visit to see his mother, Sir Lincoln Rinehart encounters a mysterious, young woman on the neighbouring estate of Montague Manor. When he discovers that he is the only one who can see her, he realises she is connected to the terrifying ghost stories he heard as a child of the manor.

Set in the Victorian era, and brought to life by the characters that coloured that time, this novel will take you on a journey back into the past where you will hear the echoes of Lincoln's footsteps and feel the shadow of his pain, as he tries to help lead the working classes out of the darkness of poverty and injustice, and uncover the mystery of the woman who may hold the key to his heart.

Filled with twists and turns, deceit and betrayal, THROUGH THE EVERGREENS explores why the road to redemption is a road less travelled, and how sometimes doing the right thing can come at a great price.

Buy from Amazon

Thursday 2 June 2016

The Siren - Book Review

The Siren
by Kiera Cass

What is it about:
A girl with a secret. The boy of her dreams. An ocean between them.

Throughout the ages, the Ocean has occasionally rescued young women from drowning. To repay their debt, these young women must serve for 100 years as Sirens, remaining young and beautiful and using their deadly voices to lure strangers into watery graves. To keep their true nature secret, Sirens must never speak to humans, and must be careful never to stay in the same place for too long. But once her century of service is over, each Siren gets a chance to start over - a chance to live the mortal life that was almost stolen from her.

Kahlen became a Siren after her family died in a terrible shipwreck, decades ago. And though a single word from her can kill, she can't resist spending her days on land, watching ordinary people and longing for the day when she will be able to speak and laugh and live freely among them again. Kahlen is resigned to finishing her sentence in solitude...until she meets Akinli. Handsome, caring, and kind, Akinli is everything Kahlen ever dreamed of. And though she can't talk to him, they soon forge a connection neither of them can deny...and Kahlen doesn't want to.

Falling in love with a human breaks all of the Ocean's rules, and if the Ocean discovers Kahlen's feelings, she'll be forced to leave Akinli for good. But for the first time in a lifetime of following the rules, Kahlen is determined to follow her heart.

What did I think of it:
I very much enjoyed the original Selection Trilogy, so I was curious about this standalone story by Cass.

And this is a pleasant read.

The instalove between Kahlen and Akinli is totally unbelievable, but for the sake of the story I went along with it.

It's not so much their relationship that was the most interesting. it was the relationship between Kahlen, the Ocean, and the other sirens I liked the best. The way each of the sirens copes with what she is and has to do, is what kept me reading to find out more.

To me this is more a story about friendship, devotion, growing up and making your own choices in life, than it is about love. The instalove between Kahlen and Akinli is more a catalyst to set Kahlen on her way to adulthood, to loosen her ties with the Ocean, who is the parent in this parable, than that it's the focus of this story.

All in all this is an enjoyable story and I'll put it on my keeper shelves next to Cass' other books. Next read: The Crown. Yes, I caved and bought it, just because I'm curious if it will turn out as I suspect it will.

Why should you read it:
It's an enjoyable Paranormal YA read.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Wednesday 1 June 2016

The Conjurers - Release Day Alert + Excerpt

This sounds like it's a really good read!
It's releasing today, so get your hands on it asap.

The Conjurers
by David Waid

The knowledge of magic that returned with crusaders from the Holy Land has spread among the learned few. The world stands poised on a knife’s edge between two futures—science or sorcery—and a cabal of ruthless wizards pursues three young people who can tip the balance forever.

A war for magic in the Middle Ages.

Orphaned in the year 1380, Eamon and Caitlin flee their home in the Wicklow Mountains of Ireland. The siblings can pacify savage wolves and control forces of nature, but only the murderers hunting them know why.

As Eamon and Caitlin fight for survival, Teresa de Borjas, the spirited daughter of a Genovese nobleman, develops an inexplicable ability to move objects with her mind. When her brother is murdered and her father imprisoned through machinations of the reclusive alchemist, Maestro Lodovicetti, her sheltered life changes forever.

Journeys of discovery and the pursuit of blood vendetta bring Eamon, Caitlin and Teresa together across the stunning backdrop of medieval Europe. The three must master their powers and defeat a cabal of the world’s greatest magi or be killed as the Age of Kings comes to an end and a tyranny of sorcerers begins.



The fatigue of sleepless nights and the end of so many terrors created a soft void Teresa yearned to fall into. She fought it, however, sitting cross-legged on the bed with her damp tresses, rubbing her eyes to keep them open. The Maestro’s heavy tome lay on her blanket and for a long time she sat staring at it, gooseflesh rising on her arms. People had been burned for possessing books like this. Words of condemnation warred in her mind with the urgings her brother’s shade had spoken in her head.
Finally, taking a deep breath, she leaned forward and drew the libram into her lap. She traced her fingers over the intricate weave of designs stamped on its leather cover. In places the beige had worn smooth and glossy. In others it was darkened from what seemed to be the fingers of a thousand centuries. The thing had brass corner bosses and two intricately worked metal clasps, cold to the touch. She closed her eyes, undid the clasps and gingerly opened the cover.
The parchment pages were old, yellow and dry beneath her fingers, with a thick, musty smell. The words were in Latin, a language Father Hugh had taught her well. She began to turn the crackling pages, looking at the illuminations, studying the carefully written words.

There is no title for this work. Its forbears were scrolls of brittle papyrus, destroyed in the burning of Ptolemy’s library after my copies had been made. Yet through these copies, and by my hand, the unaltered, unbroken lineage of their knowledge is preserved.

It is said that this is first of the seven volumes of the angel, Hocroel, originally spoken to Avichai of Tyre and scribed in the city of Tanan so that certain secrets might not perish and man not forget the one hundred sacred names of God the Creator.

Teresa read on, hands shaking, unable to take her eyes from the book. It purported to contain signs and rituals that could be used to control the elements, summon or constrain spirits, augur the future and make mutable the shape of all things. As she read, the fatigue she’d been feeling sank deep in her bones. Her face became warm as if she had a fever and the sockets of her eyes grew hot.
The book claimed knowledge from a time when the Witch of Endor summoned a dead seer for King Saul in Gibeah. It was knowledge that had been passed down through the kings of Israel and Judah and no one, it said, should fear taint from such powers as Solomon himself was said to wield.

No evil is in this name, Magien, for this same signifies in the Greek tongue a philosopher, and in the Hebrew tongue a scribe, and in the Latin tongue it signifies wise. There is no thing or art in this world that is not created by God’s hand and it is by His art of Magick that man is brought closer to His wisdom.


DAVID WAID is the author of the historical fantasy novel, The Conjurers, which releases through Amazon on June 1st. He has also published the fantasy short stories, Wicked and Loving Lies and The Festival of Rogues. David lives in Arizona with his wife of 22 years, three kids, and a craven, food-obsessed puggle whose name means “Battle Lord” in Gaelic.

Find David online:
website - Amazon