Monday, November 24, 2014

Mark This Book Monday: Jackaby by William Ritter!!

Still playing catch up with all my pending reviews, today I have for the final Mark This Book Monday entry of this week one of those books that I was very excited for, given their premise and description, and that even if it wasn't mind blowing, it was still quite a lot of fun and a good read.

JackabyJackaby by William   Ritter

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I am a huge fan of both BBC Sherlock and the original Arthur Conan Doyle books, and I'm also a huge fan of Doctor Who (even if my love has been waned a lil bit as of late) so when a book was pitched as a mix of Doctor Who & Sherlock, I was quite excited to read it!

We meet Mr Jackaby through the eyes of our POV character Abigail Rook, a girl of a respectable family that decides she doesn't want to be all nice and proper and boring and goes away to take up on adventure and ends up on the other side of the Atlantic with a few coins in her pocket and her suitcase, and she finds herself with a job as assistant to Mr Jackaby.

The mix of Sherlock and Doctor Who is quite apparent in Jackaby's personality and job, being an extremely observant and logical deducting detective (very Sherlock-like) with his laboratory and books and the like but also being able to see the paranormal and believing in things that others don't see (which was much more Doctor-like). I'd say Jackaby's character reminded me a bit of the 11th Doctor quirkiness and silly aspect more than any other Doctor.

We have a murder mystery to solve that starts as one murder commited by a supernatural entity, that quickly escalate and then we discover it's more than we thought. I must say the mystery was quite interesting at first and even though I guessed who the killer was (due to my love for Agatha Christie books I think) what I didn't guess was WHAT the killer was.

It was quite a fast read, quirky and fun and interesting, and I hope that they will continue to make this a series so I can look forward to more Jackaby, Abigail, Douglas the Duck and the rest of the gang adventures! Well deserved 4 stars for this one!

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Mark This Book Monday: ARC Review of Foresworn by Rinda Elliott!!

Hello there guys!

I'm starting this week on style by having my Monday off and going to watch Mockinjay for the second time in the evening!

We're starting this Mark This Book Monday with a review for an ARC of the final book in a trilogy, and one that I was extremely happy to discover earlier this year! As an ARC provided by the author it counts for my 2014 Review Pile Reading Challenge too!

ForeswornForesworn by Rinda Elliott

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I discovered this trilogy through the wonderful Jenny from Supernatural Snark and connected with the author via Twitter and she was kind enough to send me an advance copy of this one so I could read it before my preorder arrives next month! Thank you so much, Rinda!

That said, getting this book for review has not influenced my review or my enjoyment of the book in any way, except for being able to enjoy it earlier!

Foresworn is Kat's book, and she's the younger and toughest of the triplets. We already know a lot of information that she doesn't when she starts her journey, since we've already read Coral's and Raven's stories. But Rinda does quite a great job at both helping us keep our interest in Kat's story and keep up with the timeline with the phone calls with her sisters, so we know how it is progressing.

Kat soon finds the guy she chose to protect from her mother, and she finds herself drawn into a group of people that not only they know what she is, but that have been preparing for Ragnarok for quite a long time! Arun knows whose soul he carries and knows how to work his gift for the most part. Other young people with gods souls inside them have been coming to his farm, drawn there by the music that comes from the lake in Yellowstone, so when Kat arrives she finds herself surrounded by more people like herself and not only feels an attraction to Arun, but also a kinship that was unknown to her before.

The action moves along quite fast, because while Kat is trying to figure out how to help Arun and return to protect her sisters, fires and accidents keep on happening around the farm, and soon the bigger picture starts becoming a lil clearer. Kat gets more information on her mother's side of the family, which happens to be quite surprising. And we also find out a bit more about the triplet's father.

The final confrontation happens when the three sisters get together and it was quite a show down, with fighting both physical and magical and that would have been a fantastic conclusion. Then we got an epilogue that started very satifying and fuzzy feels but then left us with a direct hook! Amazing but very evil!!

Very well deserved 4 stars for this final book in a fantastic trilogy that mixes contemporary, paranormal and Norse mythology flawlessly!

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Saturday, November 22, 2014

Saturday Pages: SAMPLER review of A Darker Shade of Magic!!!

As my second and final Saturday Pages entry I have a sampler review. I was lucky enough to be approved by Tor Books (THANK YOU!) via Netgalley and got to read the first 150 pages. I hadn't read any Victoria Schwab books before and although I've heard amazing things from some of my canaries about them, I felt like a sampler would show me if I wanted to get this book or not and boy it did!

Even if it's only a sampler and not a full size book it still counts towards my 2014 Review Pile Reading Challenge and I'm hoping it'll help a bit with my NG ratio! ;)

SNEAK PEEK: A Darker Shade of Magic SAMPLESNEAK PEEK: A Darker Shade of Magic SAMPLE by V.E. Schwab

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Samplers can be both great and awful, and this one was a bit of both! Great because I fell in love with the world, the writing and the main character(s) and awful because it finished in a rather awful and cliffhanger-y way, so now I'm gonna go nuts waiting for the full book!

This is my first contact with Victoria Schwab's writing, and I think I might fill the wait for this one reading some of her previous books, because wow, the writing was fantastic!

In only 150 pages it managed to give broad strokes of the world building that was enough to make us get an idea of what's going on without info dumping, and leaving us wondering and wanting more! The different Londons were amazing and I cannot wait to find out more about what "really" happened with Black London!

We also get to know quite a few of the main players in the book and somehow I was rooting for Kell from very early on! I also came to like Lila a lot, even if she's a bit less easy to like sometimes. The Dane twin were damned creepy and scary and I get the feeling they're only gonna get worse!

I'm impressed and really looking forward to the book, the biggest downside of this... it doesn't come out till Feb 25th!!

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Saturday Pages: Talon by Julie Kagawa!!

Hello guys!!

Today is Saturday and after the super busy shift I had yesterday and the fact that I'm working night shift tonight, I'm taking the day easy and thinking of baking some to help me relax a bit more!

As I've already mentioned my backlog of reviews, I'm having two reviews for Saturday Pages today, and I'm starting with one very awaited book of this year because DRAGONS! and because it's Julie Kagawa and she's in my auto buy list!

Talon (Talon, #1)Talon by Julie Kagawa

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I had been extremely excited about this book because DRAGONS! + Julie Kagawa had to be awesome, and although it was quite awesome, it was a lil different from what I expected.

What was most different from what I expected was that somehow I was expecting it to be more fantasy contemporary, and it was more like paranormal contemporary, I'm not sure if that difference will make a lot of sense to you guys, but it threw me off a bit at first.

The book is done in alternating POVs between Garrett and Ember and since we started with an epic chapter of Garrett taking down a dragon with St George's army and then we move to chapters with Ember and Dante trying to assimilate and behave like normal teenagers... it was a bit jarring!

There's so much we don't know about the past of Talon or St George's, only that dragons were nearly wiped out, that St George are trying to defend humanity and that dragons can take human shape, and that's something rather unique about this book and series, they feel more like were-dragons (paranormal) that the usual non-shifting dragons of fantasy.

The relationship between Garret and Ember was very sweet and although both of them kept lying to themselves because they kept on noticing things that pointed out to their real identities, I loved their time together surfing or at the fair, pretending that they could be normal without all the extra baggage!

The one thing that caused me to make a face was the love triangle... when it appeared at first I was all "grumble grumble why love triangle grumble grumble" but then it was clear that Ember was attracted to Garret and Ember's dragon was attracted to the rogue dragon, and that quite makes sense that "beast" and human part could have different opinions. I cannot help but ship Garret and Ember more than Riley and Ember but we'll see if I'm sailing the sinking ship!

The second half of the book is what made it worth of the 4 stars for me, because stakes keep getting higher, more things start happening with Talon, with the mission to discover the sleeper and we learn a lot more about the rogue dragons, the actions starts taking off and the final third of the book is non-stop and makes you want to flip the pages even faster!

By the end of the book there are quite a few questions unanswered about Ember and Dante being twins, about what Talon really is and what really happened between St George and the dragons originally! I cannot wait for book two, Rogue! Very well deserved 4 stars for this one!

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Friday, November 21, 2014

Friday Reads: Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater!!!

As my second Friday Reads entry I have a book that I was dying to get my hands on but that arrived home while I was on vacation, and that I started as soon as I could but that didn't devour as quickly as I might have other books because I just didn't want it to end!

Maggie Stiefvater is simply a genius and I very much need to catch up with the rest of her books while I wait for the final book in this series releasing next year!

Blue Lily, Lily Blue (The Raven Cycle, #3)Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A review for Blue Lily Lily Blue is going to be very difficult to write, even more trying to keep it as spoiler free as possible!

Maggie Stiefvater's writing is flawless and I kept being surprised and scared and sometimes I needed to take a break from the book and read something else because I was genuinely scared of what might come in the next pages. Because if you want twists and new info and new worries at almost every turn of the page, this is your book!

Amazing writing, intricate plot, answers and even more questions, unexpected new characters coming up and turning into new villains, new unexpected grey maybe allies, existing relationships getting deeper, ships getting even more shipable... ah, the pain! I continue to love the ladies at 500 Fox street, the Raven Boys & Blue, and the Gray Man!

The more I read, the more complicated everything kept on getting and more scared you get because you know there's no way things can be resolved by the end of the book in a good way, or in any way. And once the book ends you are scared for what's to come on the next book, because you're sure that all the shit will hit the fan in the final book, and it is STILL ONE YEAR AWAY!!

Blue continues to be probably my favourite character in the book, she's so brave and she continues to reflect and grow and accept herself, no matter what new surprises she keeps on getting thrown at her face and dealing with her mother being missing. And of course with her non-existing-but-sort-of-meant-to-be relationship with Gansey... those two make my heart hurt and I love love love reading their sweet scenes, their unsaid conversations, the ones they actually have, and what they know that can't be but cannot help to wish for.

I would talk forever about this book but I don't think I can manage without some spoiler popping here or there, and I have to say that the book is much better enjoyed with as little previous information as possible. This is a 5 stars and some more kind of a book and I cannot recommend the whole series enough! If you haven't started reading this series yet, GO NOW AND START READING!

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Friday Reads: Stone Cold Touch by Jennifer L Armentrout!!

Hello guys!

Welcome to yet another edition of Friday Reads and in this one I will continue to attempt to catch up, so this is the first entry of two for today.

The first book I read while on vacation, yes last month, I am trying to get through the backlog of books I read but didn't review back then! It was one of those awaited sequels and features one of those rare love triangles that don't make me want to bang my head against a wall!

Stone Cold Touch (The Dark Elements, #2)Stone Cold Touch by Jennifer L. Armentrout

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Stone Cold Touch is one of those middle books in a trilogy that doesn't suffer from the middle book syndrome!

I will try my best of avoiding adding spoilers, but just in case... be warned that there might be some here and there!

White Hot Kiss was a book of self discovery for Layla and it was also more about her relationship with Roth, the prince of Hell, and it ended in a rather heartbreaking & cliffhanger-y way!

Now in Stone Cold Touch we discover even more things about Layla, and she is still living among the Wardens, even if they are even more suspicious of her and treat her like the guilty party for anything and everything.

And in this book Zayne, or Stoney as Roth would call him, gets his chance to show Layla why he should be considered seriously as part of this love triangle. Friends to lovers is one of my favourite tropes and it is so well done here!

As far as the threat that we thought had been vanquished in WHK apparently wasn't really vanquished and we spend most of the book trying to figure out who is the bad guy and Layla spents the whole book thinking the worst of herself and torn between finally having a chance to something with Zayne, and her feelings for Roth!

I should have suspected who the real bad guy was because once it is revealed I sort of did a bit of a facepalm, but JLA did a great job at distracting us with Layla's guilt and self-deprecation to really focus on the crumbs she has been placing here and there.

The ending of this one is ONCE AGAIN another cruel and evil cliffhanger and dammit I cannot wait for the final book next year! I was clearly Team Roth in the first book and now I'm not suuuure!! Team Zayne? Team Roth?? Aaaahhhhh!

Well deserved 4 stars for this one!

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Thursday, November 20, 2014

Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award!!

I don't usually take part of tags or awards, but this one felt quite special and I really felt like taking part of it, so THANK YOU to Ri from Hiver et Café and Britt from Please Feed The Bookworm for nominating/tagging me!!

So, here are the guidelines for Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award (basically to get us all talking!):
  •  Thank the blogger that nominated you, and link back to their site.
  •  Post the award’s logo onto your blog.
  •  Answer the 10 questions you’ve been asked.
  •  Nominate 10 other bloggers and ask them 10 questions.
First I'm gonna be answering Britt's questions since she nominated me first!

1. If you could alter one storyline or ending what would if be? It can be anything you want! 
Hmmm... That's gonna be a hard one to answer without spoiling anything, but the first one that comes to mind is the ending to Dreams of Gods and Monsters... I would want an epilogue with more info and more HEA maybe??

2.- How many books have you read? 
Over a thousand, but I cannot be more accurate than that!

3.- If you could only read on book/series for the rest of your life, what would it be? 
Awfully horrible and unfair to ask me that, but I guess I'd got with the Discworld novels from Terry Pratchett, they're around 33 to 34 and they're hilarious and quite varied!

4.- Would you survive a zombie apocalypse? 
Not very probable no, I do think I can surprise myself under pressure and all that, but I'm in a rather horrible shape so they would catch me running for sure!
5.- How do you tell people your a blogger? 
It doesn't come too often about in conversation but it happens when I discuss my hobbies and my love of books. After that I just tell them I have a blog where I talk about books and my reviews for them.

6.- What’s you latest and greatest ship? 
Latest and greatest? Hmmm, latest have to be Annith and Balthazaar from Mortal Heart! I finished it last night and I looooved those two!

7.- Name the book you would give your left arm for? 
Right now, so very many but the first two that pop to mind are the 4th Raven Boys book and 4th Throne of Glass!!

8.- Who is your favorite author? 
From all time I'd have to go with Jules Verne, I have been in love with his books since I was 12 or so! From more recent times? I cannot pick one, I love so many!! And after meeting a few of them, even less!

9.- Why did you start book blogging? 
I've always loved books and reading and commenting books with my friends, but since I am the more avid reader (translation = obsessed) and read more in English that the people around me, I felt I could share my love for books with the rest of the world that way!

10.- Show me how GIFted you are – One gif to that best describes you!
Hardest thing everrrrr! I wanted to find something that combined everything together but I ended up settling on something only book related...

And now for Ri's questions!!

1.- Who is your favourite book boyfriend?
Well, I don't usually have book boyfrineds, BUT I made an exception for James Alexander Malcom McKenzie Fraser! From Outlander by Diana Gabaldon, in case you didn't know who he is. Also 

2.- What is a book that you absolutely NEED right now??
Right now? Too many!! But since I requested The Winner's Crime last night on NG, I'm gonna go with that one! I'm doing the pretzel to be approved like there's no tomorrow!!

3.- What is a book that you have been recommending?
A Mad Wicked Folly by Sharon Biggs Waller, it's an stunning debut, historical fiction, with sweet romance, a lot of important issues discussed like feminism and suffrage and it is beautifully written, EVERYONE NEEDS TO READ IT!!

4.- Which Hogwarts house are you? 
Well, I took an internet test and I was Ravenclaw, then took the Pottermore sorting and was sorted into Hufflepuff, so I call myself a Ravenpuff! ;)

5.- How did you get into book blogging?
I had been blogging about handmade for quite a while and decided to include other stuff I loved in my blog, like baking, cooking and my love for books and reading, and it very quickly too over the blog like there was no tomorrow!

6.- What is the first book you ever got signed? 
Hmmm, the first book I got signed was won by giveaway and it was an ARC of Deception by CJ Redwine! But the first book ever I got signed in person was last month and it was Mortal Gods by Kendare Blake!

7.- How do you balance book blogging in your daily life?
I juggle things as best as I can... it's hard to be able to do everything I want, read, update the blog, bake, photograph and edit, watch the shows I like and all in the time I have off from work, since I have a full time job as an Oncology nurse.

8.- What are you currently reading?
Jackaby by William Ritter

9.- Which OTP sails your ship?
My OTP is Celaena and Chaol!!!

10.- Where do you like to read?
My sofa and my bed! Though I also have some nice spots to read around the cottage!

And now my ten questions! 

1.- What is that you love most about reading and books?
2.- What is your favourite genre(s) to read?
3.-  Are you a scheduled or a mood reader?
4.- What's that something that usually makes you twitch when reading about?
5.- Who is the first author that you ever met? If you haven't met any, who would you want to meet most?
6.- Do you prefer hardbacks or paperbacks or eBooks? All of them?
7.- Who would you choose as your BBF "Book Best Friend", character you feel like you'd get along best with?
8.- Do you have a favourite place to shop books? Physical store or Online?
9.- What's one book you'd love to see turned into a movie?
10.- Do you write fanfic or do any fan art? If so, which book/series is the one that inspires you?

And now I am supposed to tag/nominate 10 bloggers but I think most of my bloggy friends have done this already or have been nominated, so if anyone wants to do this, feel free to do so!!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Waiting On Wednesday #69!!

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly feature hosted at Breaking The Spine  that spotlights those can't-wait-to-get-my-hands-on-them books that we are eagerly awaiting!

Well, this week I'm totally biting my nails waiting for a final book in a trilogy I'm loving so far, and which book is that one, you say? Foresworn by Rinda Elliott!!

Goodreads Summary:

"It is written that three Sisters of Fate have the power to change the world’s destiny.

But only if they survive…

Kat Lockwood grew up listening to her unhinged mother’s stories about the Norse goddess souls she and her triplet sisters carry, about fiery deaths and a prophecy foretelling the world’s end. Now, to save that world, Kat must find a guy who hosts the soul of a Norse god–a warrior with the lightest blond hair and the darkest brown eyes.

But at a truck stop on her road trip, Kat freezes time while she writes out a cryptic message in runes. The only other person able to see this happen? A gorgeous guy with the lightest blond hair and the darkest brown eyes.

Kat’s not convinced peaceful Arun is the future warrior who will turn the tide in the final battle. Yet, Arun turns out to be a lot tougher than he seems. As soul-carrying teens and underworld creatures gather over the world’s deadliest volcano, Kat finds that no one, including her sisters and mother, is exactly who she thought they were….

Sisters of Fate

The prophecy doesn’t lie: one is doomed to die."

Why am I eagerly awaiting Foresworn? Well, it IS the final book in the trilogy and we're getting more action and a lot more twists and answers and I simply cannot wait!!

What are you all (im)patiently awaiting this week?