Glee Goodie Bag Giveaway!

Win a Glee goodie bag containing Glee: The Beginning: An Original Novel and Glee: Road to Sectionals on DVD. Giveaway is International.

Sunday, 22 August 2010

In My Mailbox (quince)

In My Mailbox explores the contents of my mailbox on a weekly basis. It is hosted by The Story Siren. Go HERE to participate.


Fire by Kristin Cashore
Artemis Fowl and the Atlantis Complex

For review

Scarlett Dedd by Cathy Brett, along with an awesome poster! Thanks Headline!

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Jealousy by Lili St. Crow

Before I review solely ‘Jealousy’, the third book in the Strange Angels series, I believe there is something very important to say about this series: it is excellent. It is action-packed and never boring with so many well-rounded characters. The prose is tight and concise, and once you start, you literally cannot stop reading. You are immersed in the world of Dru, Graves and Christophe- the Real World with variations of vampires, werewolves, fairies, zombies and a lot of other supernatural creatures.

One of my favourite aspects of the series is that Dru is like any other human being, who has a bladder, who has hair that frizzes and sometimes breaks out, and who needs to cough in the most inappropriate situations. Many books often skip the mundane things like showering and brushing teeth but these things are what make the characters seem human and not superhuman beings who never seem to get the urge to pee while they’re off doing romantic things/saving the world/learning how to be a witch/vampire/werewolf.

So read Strange Angels and the subsequent novels. It is unlike any other series I have ever read before.


Dru Anderson might finally be safe. She’s at the largest Schola on the continent, and beginning to learn what it means to be svetocha–half vampire, half human, and all deadly. If she survives her training, she will be able to take her place in the Order, holding back the vampires and protecting the oblivious normal people.

But a web of lies and betrayals is still closing around her, just when she thinks she can relax a little. Her mentor Christophe is missing, her almost-boyfriend is acting weird, and the bodyguards she’s been assigned seem to know much more than they should. And then there’s the vampire attacks, the strange nightly visits, and the looks everyone keeps giving her. As if she should know something.

Or as if she’s in danger.

Someone high up in the Order is a traitor. They want Dru dead–but first, they want to know what she remembers of the night her mother died. Dru doesn’t want to remember, but it looks like she might have to–especially since once Christophe returns, he’ll be on trial for his life. The only person who can save him is Dru.

The problem is, once she remembers everything, she may not want to…


Jealousy is the third novel in the series. The novels seem to improve as you progress through the series- well that was what happened with Betrayals, and Jealousy is no exception. There is more action, more intrigue, more, er, romantic liaisons. Plenty of new, interesting characters providing further entertainment- I particularly liked Benjamin and Leon, a couple of Dru’s new bodyguards, and the kinder members of the Order such as Hiro.

Characters we have met in previous books are also included in this novel- Dru, Graves and Christophe are a given, of course, but we are also able to internally say ‘Aww’ whenever Dibs appears, and enjoy Shanks’ snarky comments. Anna, the other svetocha has a very important role in this book, and becomes even more despicable than she was in that one encounter in Betrayals.

The love-triangle is further developed as well. I have to say, in Betrayals I hugely preferred Christophe over Graves. But Graves matures in Jealousy, and we are constantly reminded by his actions that he cares about Dru and really would do anything for her. Christophe is as hot and mysterious as ever but also shows a softer side in his novel. However, it is a teensy bit creepy that he used to be in love with her mother, which Dru thankfully acknowledges herself.

Dru is honestly one of my favourite YA protagonists. She is such a huge improvement over passive characters presented YA Supernatural novels, always going on and on about the hot, mysterious boy but not really caring about anything else. Dru cares a lot about the more important things at hand. She is determined, strong, brave, smart and very, very human.

Something I admired about the book was that while you did have all this drama, tense action scenes, overwhelming emotions, Lili St. Crow was able to interject humour into many scenes. For example, a particularly amusing scene is one that involves Dru and Graves shopping for clothes and Target to the horror of Benjamin, one of Dru's bodyguards. Another example is Dru belching loudly after a very horrific, very bloody battle. This just made the book more entertaining, more enjoyable to read and, well, how can you not love a protagonist who isn't afraid to burp in public?

Jealousy is, simply, an awesome addition to the Strange Angels series and the revelation at the end has made me extremely impatient to read Defiance.

Rating: 5/5

Thanks to Quercus books for sending the series for review.

Monday, 2 August 2010

Giveaway: Glee Goodie Bag!

Thanks to Headline Publishing, one of you can win a Glee goodie bag, containing:

Glee: The Beginning: An Original Novel by Sophia Lowell

Glee: Road to Sectionals is available on DVD now. Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment.

Gleebook posters

If you're a Gleek and would like to enter the giveaway, please leave a comment with your name and e-mail. The giveaway is international.

+1 for following and +2 for leaving a comment on one of my reviews!

Sunday, 1 August 2010

In my Mailbox (catorce)

In My Mailbox explores the contents of my mailbox on a weekly basis. It is hosted by The Story Siren. Go HERE to participate.

I spent this week volunteering with disabled children which was tiring but extremely rewarding. This is why I haven't been able to post- I've just been so exhausted!

The Glass Demon by Helen Grant
Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
The Magician's Guild by Trudi Canavan
The Undrowned Child by Michelle Lovric

My Name is Memory by Ann Brashares


From the New York Times-bestselling author of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, inspired, magical book-a love story that lasts more than a lifetime.

Daniel has spent centuries falling in love with the same girl. Life after life, crossing continents and dynasties, he and Sophia (despite her changing name and form) have been drawn together-and he remembers it all. Daniel has "the memory", the ability to recall past lives and recognize souls of those he's previously known. It is a gift and a curse. For all the times that he and Sophia have been drawn together throughout history, they have also been torn painfully, fatally, apart. A love always too short.

Interwoven through Sophia and Daniel's unfolding present day relationship are glimpses of their expansive history together. From 552 Asia Minor to 1918 England and 1972 Virginia, the two souls share a long and sometimes torturous path of seeking each other time and time again. But just when young Sophia (now "Lucy" in the present) finally begins to awaken to the secret of their shared past, to understand the true reason for the strength of their attraction, the mysterious force that has always torn them apart reappears. Ultimately, they must come to understand what stands in the way of their love if they are ever to spend a lifetime together.


So I read some less than favourable reviews of My Name is Memory which is why I approached it with some trepidation. However, apart from the end which I disliked but was setting up the premise for the sequel, I found it to be a vastly enjoyable read. I found the glimpses into Daniel's past lives so fascinating- all his interactions with the various forms of Lucy, the enmity between him and his brother and most of all, all the information about life in those various historical periods he lived in. Some might have said it was irrevelant but I relished it.
The chapters with Lucy too, set in the present, were interesting although I didn't find her as captivating as Daniel.

The concept itself of keeping one's memories of past lives was extremely interesting. I personally loved reading about how Daniel used these memories in everyday life. One scene which stood out to me in particular was when he travelled to storage place he had discovered and filled in one of his past lives.

A lot of patience is needed to sustain interest in the book since after the initial scene, the characters do not meet until near the end of the book. This was, of course, slightly aggravating but surprisingly not so annoying that I just skipped to the that portion of the book. As aforementioned, I enjoyed reading about Daniel's past lives and about Lucy slowly remembering hers.

Daniel is such an intricately developed character. His love for Lucy is boundless so you cannot help but root for him. Brashare's writing, especially in first person from Daniel's point of view, is very, very good which brings him to life. Every strong emotion felt by him is felt by the reader.

However, the final few chapters were a bit of a disappointment. I won't give anything anyway but I didn't feel that the fast-paced action really suited the tone of the book. The ending itself was far too abrupt and left a lot of things hanging in the air. But as aforementioned, it was just setting things up for the sequel- in a very undesirable way.

Will I read the sequel? Yes, because Daniel and Lucy were such vivid characters and I want them to have a happy ending.

Rating: 3.5/5