Monday, November 30, 2015

Bookish Outings: Supanova Brisbane

Over the weekend I attended Supanova and had a blast! I was lucky enough to meet authors Isobelle Carmody, Lynette Noni, Trudi Caravan, C.S. Pacat and Sarah J. Maas, as well as actor Matthew Lewis of Harry Potter! Yay!

Isobelle Carmody is best known for her Obernewtyn series, though I have yet to read them. I recently read Scatterlings for book club and so we had a little chat about it. Turns out her daughter is the model on the cover!

I had a really lovely chat with Lynette Noni, author of Akarnae. She is such a sweetheart! She gave me a bookmark and had a bag full of Potentials (that is, in her book, students are tested on their potential to succeed at certain activities and placed in appropriate classes). I'm in Delta Archery with Jordan and Bear, woo! Lynette was also giving out lolly pops which my Mum appreciated.

I didn't get any photos with Trudi Caravan and C.S. Pacat, unfortunately. It was so great to meet them. I haven't actually read any of Trudi's books yet but I've been recommended Thief's Magic a few times, so I figured I'd take the opportunity to grab it there and have it signed. C.S. Pacat was at the Penguin Australia booth, where I went looking for a book to read on the train home that night. See, I spend 3 days at Supanova and travel almost 2 hours by train to get there and back each day. I didn't realise how far I'd gotten through my current read on Friday and so finished it on Saturday morning. I needed something to survive the journey home and the ever awesome Felicity recommended Pacat's books, the first two of her Captive Prince Trilogy, and again, I took the opportunity to get them signed. So, so glad for this because I devoured her first book that night and started the second on Sunday!

It was amazing to meet Sarah J. Maas, she is adorable! She loved my rainbow hair and wanted to know exactly how I did it. I asked her if I could marry Lucien from A Court of Thorns and Roses and am happy to report she said yes! She wants Rhys, so if I have Lucien there's no trouble between us. But sorry to any Rhys fans out there - Sarah's called dibs! Sarah was very popular of course, and so her line was always so very busy, but I was lucky enough to catch her late Sunday when it was much quieter. So I got to have a photo with her and have another chat. I asked if she's always known how she wants her series's to end and who it is she wants her heroine's to end up with romantically. It's a yes to both. In terms of the Throne of Glass series, she's had many endings over the years (she started writing it when she was 16!) but has a definite ending she is working towards now. As for the romance, she doesn't want that to be a focus at the end, and told me that she's satisfied with how she left it in Queen of Shadows. She didn't go into detail as I haven't read it yet but now I'm very intrigued!

I attended one author panel while I was at Supanova called Creating Kick-Ass Characters. The author's were Kimberley Clark, Lynette Noni, Melanie Casey and Sarah J. Maas. It was an interesting panel, each author talking about what makes characters kick-ass, how it's not just physicality, and in what ways each of their characters are kick-ass, who their favourite kick-ass characters are, and so on.

Figured I'd share my photo op with Matthew Lewis! Technically it's book related, right? Neville Longbottom, yay!

That's a wrap on Supanova. Well, the bookish parts of it anyways! There's so much going on at conventions and it is always the best fun. Have you been to such conventions? What authors have you met? What authors would you like to meet?

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Stacking the Shelves (74)

Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews. Share all of the bookish goodies you got during the week!


Frankie by Shivaun Plozza - Many thanks to Penguin Teen Australia
Yellow by Megan Jacobson - And even more thanks to Penguin Teen Australia

Thief of Lies by Brenda Drake (eGalley) - Thanks to Entangled Teen

On Wednesday I attended PTALive here in Brisbane, where Penguin Teen Australia discussed their popular titles of this year, and those to be released next year. There's some exciting titles, and Frankie and Yellow above were two that I was most interested to read, so I'm beyond excited to have received ARCs of each. Really can't wait to read them!

This weekend I'm attending Supanova, a popculture convention, and I'll be meeting Matthew Lewis (Neville Longbottom of Harry Potter), and authors Sarah J Maas, Lynette Noni and Isobelle Carmody. Yay! I'll post photos after the weekend!

What exciting new titles did you get your hands on this week?

Friday, November 27, 2015

Feature & Follow Friday: Double Question Week

Feature & Follow Friday is hosted by Rachel over at Parajunkee's View and Alison of Alison Can Read. This is a chance to get to know fellow book bloggers and have them meet you. Be sure to pop over and meet this week's featured bloggers!

There seems to be two questions this week, so here goes:

Alison's Q of the Week: Black Friday Eve! You have $100 (or Pounds, etc, whatever your currency is) to spend on books. What are you going to buy?

Honestly, I'm so addicted to buying books that I can't really think of any off the top of my head that I don't already have! Um, um, um...well, I know I'll be looking to get Winter by Marissa Meyer and Trust Me, I'm Trouble by Mary Elizabeth Summer when I next visit my bookstore. I'd probably save it for all the new books that would be published in upcoming months. Or maybe if I could get $100 every Thanksgiving I'd save it all up until I have enough to buy a first edition Harry Potter & The Philosopher's Stone maybe?

Parajunkee's Q of the Week: If you could write a book what genre would it be?

Most likely Contemporary Romance! I suppose I might be tempted to write a Fantasy too...

Happy Friday everyone! Please share your FFF posts in the comments & I'll be sure to pop over!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Review: Way Down Dark by JP Smythe

Title: Way Down Dark
Author: JP Smythe
Series: The Australia Trilogy, Book One
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Published Date: 2 July 2015
Buy: Amazon | The Book Depository | Dymocks Australia

The first in an extraordinary new YA trilogy by James Smythe, perfect for fans of The Hunger Games and Divergent.

There's one truth on Australia: You fight or you die. Usually both.

Seventeen-year-old Chan's ancestors left a dying Earth hundreds of years ago, in search of a new home. They never found one.

The only life that Chan's ever known is one of violence, of fighting. Of trying to survive.

But there might be a way to escape. In order to find it, Chan must head way down into the darkness - a place of buried secrets, long-forgotten lies, and the abandoned bodies of the dead.

Seventeen-year-old Chan, fiercely independent and self-sufficient, keeps her head down and lives quietly, careful not to draw attention to herself amidst the violence and disorder. Until the day she makes an extraordinary discovery - a way to return the Australia to Earth. But doing so would bring her to the attention of the fanatics and the murderers who control life aboard the ship, putting her and everyone she loves in terrible danger.

And a safe return to Earth is by no means certain
. (summary from Goodreads)

Way Down Dark is certainly action-packed and fast paced!

Way Down Dark is one dark and intense read. It gets the heart pumping, that's for sure. It packs quite the whollop action wise, as it's pretty violent and very quick, so it's really go, go, go! I liked that about this book because it kept me hooked. I needed that because some of the story elements of Way Down Dark were familiar, having been used in other novels, and so I had an inkling where the story was headed. I'm not saying it copied any other book, not at all - just that some dystopian trends are obvious. It's still very interesting, despite this, as only some answers are revealed and the biggest one is still to come, following one heck of a cliffhanger. This book is not for the lighthearted. When I say it's dark and violent, I really mean it. This is one ship, full to the brim with people with certain allegiances, all with their own rules and territory, vying for even more. It is kill or be killed, and Smythe describes it all in a detail that will certainly play on your mind. Like people swimming through The Pit, made up of waste and decomposing who knows what, best not to think about it. There's definitely an ick factor to Way Down Dark. What also works well is Way Down Dark's shifting point of views. For the most part, the story is told from Chan's point of view, but here and there we get insight from Agatha. These encompass the past and present and offer the most answers to what's going on. It make for some intrigue. Still, I wish Way Down Dark was that little bit more original plot wise. Even with the heart-pounding action, it could still be tedious at times, recognising where Smythe was going with certain things.

Smythe's characters are as impacting as his action. Chan is a great MC. She's aware of the dangers and her place in life, ready and able to be strong and fight, but still afraid. I both liked and got frustrated by her morals. But this is what makes her relatable despite the out there setting and situation. Chan is so very human. Agatha is Chan without the morals, in a way. Also strong and capable, even in old age, but less inclined to help others. For Agatha, it's just about surviving, no matter how selfishly. It's interesting, as between Chan and Agatha both sides of the fight or flight response are covered. The real comparison is between Chan and Rex. Rex is the complete opposite of Chan, ready and loving to kill, something borderline animalistic. Her and her 'people' remind me of the Reavers from Firefly and Serenity. I'm looking forward to the next book in the series to see where both Chan and Rex end up, and what the cliffhanger means for their relationship - for lack of a better word! Jonah I'm not too sure what to make of. I get the feeling there's more to his story, or at least I hope so. His and Chan's relationship was just beginning and I'd like to see where Smythe takes them too. All of these characters are hard and violent, suiting the tone of the story. None are especially emotional or endearing, but Smythe still ensures we're rooting for Chan.

Way Down Dark is a gritty, hard hitting read that is sure to please fans of dystopian. 


Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Waiting on Yellow by Megan Jacobson

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jill of Breaking the Spine. It spotlights soon to be released books that can't come quick enough!

I'm looking forward to reading...

Yellow by Megan Jacobson

Publisher: Penguin Teen Australia
Publication Date: 1 February 2016
Pre-Order: The Book Depository

Yellow is a YA murder mystery with a slight supernatural edge, but at heart it's about the redemptive power of kindness. Publishing in February 2016, it’s a beautifully written coming-of-age story about family, first love, finding your place and uncovering the secrets of the past.

If fourteen-year-old Kirra is having a mid-life crisis now, then it doesn't bode well for her life expectancy. Her so-called friends bully her, whatever semblance of a mother she had has been drowned at the bottom of a gin bottle ever since her dad left them for another woman, and now a teenage ghost is speaking to her through a broken phone booth. Kirra and the ghost make a pact. She'll prove who murdered him almost twenty years ago if he does three things for her. He makes her popular, he gets her parents back together, and he doesn't haunt her. Things aren't so simple however, and Kirra realises that people can be haunted in more ways than one.
(summary from Goodreads)

Doesn't that just sound awesome? I attended PTALive here in Brisbane earlier tonight, where I was lucky enough to learn about some great books Penguin Teen Australia will be publishing next year, and this was one that I immediately noted as a must have! I was also very lucky to receive an ARC of it, so yay! I can't wait to read it!

What have you added to your TBR list?

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday: Thanksgiving Freebie

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme started over at The Broke and The Bookish. Each week they have a specific topic for a top ten list. Link up, visit some new blogs and add to your ever growing TBR list! This week's topic is:

Thanksgiving Freebie!

Because I liked the suggestions made for this week's Top Ten Tuesday freebie, I've decided to do more than one!

Top Five Books I'm Thankful For

  • The Day After Forever hit me hard when I first read it in high school. It's since been a much adored book and is one that started my love of contemporary fiction.
  • Harry Potter is a no brainer, really. It is my all time favourite and always will be.
  • The Hunger Games got me into YA. When I was in school, YA wasn't really a thing. When I first started seeing YA books and becoming intrigued, this book was the one that completely hooked me in. There's been no turning back since.
  • Just Listen was the first Sarah Dessen book I read. From there I went back to read her others and she's become one of my most favourite authors.
  • A Walk to Remember for much the same reason as above. It was my first Nicholas Sparks and he too has become a favourite. I just adore his books so this will always have a special place in my heart.

Five Fictional Families I'd Like to Celebrate Thanksgiving With
As we don't celebrate Thanksgiving here in Australia, I'd simply like to celebrate it one time anyways!

  • The Weasley's - A weird choice, I know, seeing as they wouldn't celebrate Thanksgiving either, but still. If they did, it'd be awesome. Such a rowdy and loving family! And I can imagine the cooking Molly would do, so yes, please!
  • The Pitch's - Again, as above, a weird choice. But whatever! In Carry On, Simon celebrates Christmas with the Pitch's and it's such a formal affair. I imagine if they celebrated Thanksgiving it'd be the same. Plus, haunted castle like setting, so woo!
  • The Mellark/Everdeen's - Mostly because they're on my mind after watching Mockingjay Part 2. It'd be small and beautiful.
  • The Avengers - Granted, not technically a family, but I say it counts. Oh, the fun! If only this could happen.
  • The Firefly crew - It definitely counts! They're a family! And I choose a pre-Serenity celebration, thanks. Thanksgiving in space? Um, yes.
Happy Thanksgiving to those who celebrate it...and Happy End of November to those who don't? Please share your Top Ten Tuesday post in the comments so I can have a look!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Movie Review: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2

Title: Mockingjay Part 2
Series: The Hunger Games
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Elizabeth Banks, Woody Harrelson, Sam Claflin, Donald Sutherland, Jena Malone, Julianne Moore, Philip Seymour Hoffman
Director: Francis Lawrence
Writers: Suzanne Collins (author), Peter Craig & Danny Strong (screenplay)
Released: 19 November 2015

As the war of Panem escalates to the destruction of other districts by the Capitol, Katniss Everdeen, the reluctant leader of the rebellion, must bring together an army against President Snow, while all she holds dear hangs in the balance. (summary from IMDb)


A brilliant adaptation, Mockingjay Part 2 is everything I wanted it to be.

The Hunger Games movies have all been great adaptations of the books. I've always been happy and Mockingjay Part 2 is no different. I was disappointed however that they chose to split Mockinjay into two films. To me, it didn't feel necessary. While I still quite liked Part 1, it's my least favourite of the movies and even now I wish they'd simply made one epic film. See, my excitement had started to wane with the announcement they were drawing it out. I was no longer "OMG, I can't wait!" as I had been for The Hunger Games and Catching Fire. Which is a shame, because these movies are deserving of that excitement. I adored Mockingjay Part 2. I know there was a lot of upset about how Collins ended her series, but I always felt it was perfect. Freaking heartbreaking, yes, but it worked for me. And seeing it brought to life on screen reminded me of my love for this series - both the films and the books.

Mockingjay Part 2 is thrilling and tragic, full of action and emotion. There were some changes but they're really minor. The script, the effects, the cinematography is all so great. From the first second to the last I was completely engrossed. I'm sometimes a little vocal when I'm that invested. So I admit to some snorts, cheers, groans, and sobs. A lot of the latter, actually. I'm so thankful I knew what was coming but it was still as effecting as ever. I covered my eyes for Finnick and bowed my head for Prim. I may have glared a little for Coin. Okay, smirked. The best thing about these movies has always been the cast. The acting is again top-notch. I will hold these characters and these actors close to my heart always. There could never be another Katniss, that's for sure. Lawrence shines, as she always does.

My absolute favourite thing about Mockingjay Part 2 is Peeta and Katniss. I can't help it, I've been waiting for THAT moment! I admit to a lot of awwing, squealing and even a little flailing. I've been Team Peeta since book two and that won't change. Team Peeta forever! I'd say my only disappointment with the movie is the lack of Snow's granddaughter. That's been the change from the books to the movies that I've always appreciated. She was only ever minor but her scenes were so very powerful. In Mockingjay Part 1, her loosening her plait is my favourite of the whole movie. So for her to be only a mention by Johanna was a bit of a letdown because I was really looking forward to where they might take her. Maybe a deleted scene on the BluRay/DVD?

Overall, Mockingjay Part 2 is an awesome movie, a must see. It's been great seeing these favourite books come to life on film. I'm thinking it's time for a marathon of the first three movies before going back to see Part 2 at the cinemas again!


Saturday, November 21, 2015

Stacking the Shelves (73)

Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews. Share all of the bookish goodies you got during the week!


The Magic Thief by Kendall Kulper
Am I Normal Yet? by Holly Bourne
Their Fractured Light by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner
There Will Come a Time by Carrie Arcos
Sapphire Blue by Kerstin Gier
Emerald Green by Kerstin Gier
Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin

Harry Potter Colouring Book

Well, I had told myself I was going to be good and not buy so many books in the lead up to Christmas to try and save some extra money, but then my bookstore was all enticing with a sale. That four letter word! I couldn't resist.

What new things have you added to your shelves?

Friday, November 20, 2015

Feature & Follow Friday: Teleport into a Story

Feature & Follow Friday is hosted by Rachel over at Parajunkee's View and Alison of Alison Can Read. This is a chance to get to know fellow book bloggers and have them meet you. Be sure to pop over and meet this week's featured bloggers!

If you could teleport into ANY story, which would you choose?

HARRY POTTER! Of course. Always. See above? That's me years and years (many years!) ago ready to catch the Hogwarts Express! I'm actually getting depressed that I can't teleport to Hogwarts now...

I'm trying to think of any others, just to flesh this out a little! I wouldn't mind visiting Middle Earth, so Lord of the Rings for sure. Can I choose The Avengers? Oh, to check out a world with superheroes! I wouldn't mind visiting the world of Magonia either. Flying ships and bird people! Need I go on?

What story would you choose to teleport into?

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Review: In the Skin of a Monster by Kathryn Barker

Title: In the Skin of a Monster  
Author: Kathryn Barker
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
Published Date: 1 August 2015
Buy: Amazon | The Book Depository | Dymocks Australia

What if your identical twin sister was a murderer? Does that make you a monster too? A profound, intense, heartbreaking fantasy that tackles issues of fate versus free will, and whether you can ever truly know someone.

Caught in a dreamscape, mistaken for a killer ... will Alice find a way home?

Three years ago, Alice's identical twin sister took a gun to school and killed seven innocent kids; now Alice wears the same face as a monster. She's struggling with her identity, and with life in the small Australian town where everyone was touched by the tragedy. Just as Alice thinks things can't get much worse, she encounters her sister on a deserted highway. But all is not what it seems, and Alice soon discovers that she has stepped into a different reality, a dream world, where she's trapped with the nightmares of everyone in the community. Here Alice is forced to confront the true impact of everything that happened the day her twin sister took a gun to school ... and to reveal her own secret to the boy who hates her most.
(summary from Goodreads)

Original and mind blowing, In the Skin of a Monster is the kind of book you don't easily forget. It'll also leave you wondering about the consequences of your nightmares.

For some reason I started this book expecting a contemporary drama but I soon learned my mistake. By chapter two I was wondering what the heck was going on! Monsters? An immortal with wings? Another world? Yeah, contemporary drama, not so much. And looking back at that summary I don't even know why I didn't realise - it's right there, clear as day! But oh well. In the Skin of a Monster has quite the supernatural twist and it is awesome! At first it doesn't make much sense. Barker throws readers right in and we learn as we go. The story is set in a sort of alternate reality, an almost replica of Alice's hometown where the leftovers of the townspeople's dreams exist. But since Alice's identical twin sister took a gun to school and murdered many children before killing herself, most of those dreams have become nightmares, and this alternate reality reflects that in horrifying ways. Here be monsters, but the worst of them are the multiple versions of Alice's sister. It's certainly an interesting and thrilling concept, and I was instantly hooked. It might take a push for some readers though. I read In the Skin of a Monster as part of a book club and found that some were put off by not understanding exactly what was happening. This thing is though, it's purposeful. The narrative is told through the alternating points of view of Alice and Lux. We experience Lux's as if it's the present, but Alice refers to writing her point of view, and so writing after the fact she often alludes to things that are important but will be explained more later. It can be frustrating. But personally, I enjoyed this because when authors let us in on some tidbits it can become too predictable. There was no predicting In the Skin of a Monster for me! The ending was such a surprise. What I liked was that not everything is perfect or convenient. I admit to a little disappointment, but mostly this book, despite it's supernatural elements, is real and I appreciate that. I just have to give kudos to the setting too. A small Australian outback town is where I grew up and I found myself nodding along to a number of insights. Other things like references to Sea World and Movie World also appealed to me, again, because hey, I know those places! 

Barker touches on a number of issues throughout In the Skin of a Monster that are hard hitting and relevant. The most obvious is school shootings, of course. Alice has to deal with the reality of being such a shooters identical twin, actually wearing the face of the person who killed so many of the children of the small town. There's also the question of how much like her sister Alice is, deep down, considering. Barker also touches on the treatment of family members of such murderers after the fact, as well as survivors guilt. It certainly makes for an emotional and heart-wrenching read. It's only brief, but Barker offers commentary on today's camera phone wielding society. A boy used his mobile to take pictures of the murders and Alice's sister wielding the gun rather than calling the police! So much is said with so little. That one observation resonated the most with me, though there's a lot to In the Skin of a Monster that impacts. Alice's journey is poignant. She isn't only trying to find her place but reconcile her love for her sister against the monstrous act her twin committed. It's a struggle readers feel for. As is Marcus's. Marcus's story is sad and surprising, one that packs a real punch. His part in the book is really quite minor, considering, but significant. Lux is much the same as Alice, struggling with his identity and place in the world in terms of his connection to Alice's sister. His and Alice's relationship is touching, allowing each of them to face their feelings about her sister and find their path. And Ivan is a kind of friendly monster, somewhat all knowing and how can you not be taken in by that?!

In the Skin of a Monster is unlike anything I've read before. Barker is masterful in dealing with such serious and relevant topics against a supernatural backdrop that is riveting and unforgettable. 


Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Waiting on The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jill of Breaking the Spine. It spotlights soon to be released books that can't come quick enough!

I'm liking the sounds of...

The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi

Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Published Date: 3 May 2016
Pre-Order: Amazon | The Book Depository | Dymocks Australia

Cursed with a horoscope that promises a marriage of Death and Destruction, sixteen-year-old Maya has only earned the scorn and fear of her father's kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her world is upheaved when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. But when her wedding takes a fatal turn, Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Yet neither roles are what she expected. As Akaran's queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar's wife, she finds friendship and warmth.

But Akaran has its own secrets - thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Beneath Akaran's magic, Maya begins to suspect her life is in danger. When she ignores Amar's plea for patience, her discoveries put more than new love at risk - it threatens the balance of all realms, human and Otherworldly.

Now, Maya must confront a secret that spans reincarnated lives and fight her way through the dangerous underbelly of the Otherworld if she wants to protect the people she loves.

THE STAR-TOUCHED QUEEN is a lush, beautifully written and vividly imagined fantasy inspired by Indian mythology.
(summary from Goodreads)

I'm definitely looking forward to this one! Indian mythology, yes please. And I read it's being pitched as a Hades and Persephone like romance, so double yes please!

What book caught your fancy?

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Top Ten Quotes I Loved From Books I Read This Past Year

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme started over at The Broke and The Bookish. Each week they have a specific topic for a top ten list. Link up, visit some new blogs and add to your ever growing TBR list! This week's topic is:

Top Ten Quotes I Loved From Books I Read This Past Year

"Baz grins, then leans over and kisses my neck. (I have a mole there; he treats it like a target.)"
- Carry On by Rainbow Rowell 

"I think you gotta be who you want to be until you feel like you are whoever it is you're trying to become. Sometimes half of doing something is pretending that you can."
- Dumplin' by Julie Murphy

"I'm neither a genius nor a kid destined to become a wizard. I'm just me. I read stuff. Books are not my only friends, but we're friendly. So there."
- Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley

"I can't imagine a universe in which I try to unlove her."
- Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley

"Our private tastes in books showed a hint of our secret selves."
- The Walls Around Us by Nova Ren Suma

"Truth didn't mean anything without someone to share it with; you could shout truth into the air forever, and spend your life doing it, if someone didn't care and listen."
- Uprooted by Naomi Novik

"'You're the brightest thing in the room,' he said. He lifted his hand from my waist, and slowly, carefully brushed a stray lock of hair from my cheek. 'You shine'."
- Since You've Been Gone by Morgan Matson

"But really, they did it because every human being has a basic instinct to help each other out. It might not seem that way sometimes, but it's true."
- The Martian by Andy Weir

"Duct tape works anywhere. Duct tape is magic and should be worshipped."
- The Martian by Andy Weir

"Being temporary doesn't make something matter any less, because the point isn't for how long, the point is that it happened."
- Extraordinary Means by Robyn Schneider

"So let's raise our glass to the accident season,
To the river beneath us where we sink our souls,
To the bruises and secrets, to the ghosts in the ceiling,
One more drink for the watery road."
- The Accident Season by Moira Fowley-Doyle

"Fall in love with me, not the idea of rescuing me."
- Ticker by Lisa Mantchev

"Sometimes I think people take reality for granted."
- Made You Up by Francesca Zappia

I love quotes. Some of these make me giggle, some resonate with me, others make me sigh. Or in the case of the first, flail all over the place.

What are some of your favourite quotes? Please share your Top Ten Tuesday posts in the comments so I can visit!

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Review: Scatterlings by Isobelle Carmody

Title: Scatterlings
Author: Isobelle Carmody
Publisher: Ford St
Published Date: 2015 (First published January 1991)
Buy: Amazon | Dymocks Australia

Merlin wakes to a world that is utterly changed. She has no memory aside from a name whispered to her by one of the strange voices in her mind, and the knowledge that she is being hunted. She is determined to learn what happened to her and to her world but the way forward is full of pitfalls and she is swept up by the renegade scatterlings and drawn into their rebellion against the all-powerful Citizen gods. 

But as she strives to separate herself from the telepathic clanfolk, she discovers the path to knowledge and way to the freedom the scatterlings seek, lead to the same place - the forbidden domed city of the Citizen gods. (from back cover)

Scatterlings is a thought-provoking read, a dystopian that questions the morality and consequences of human choices. 

Scatterlings starts with a bang and is immediately attention grabbing. As Merlin has no memory of who she is or what world she's found herself in, so too are we as readers lost. With only the voices in Merlin's head as any sort of guide, Carmody ensures her narrative is full of questions. What world is this? How are the people telepathic? Who are the Citizen gods? Who is Merlin really? With a name like Merlin, right away Carmody has readers theorizing! I enjoyed this aspect of the story, that we're putting things together along with Merlin. Scatterlings is certainly all about the world building. The Clans, the scatterlings, their beliefs, the visiondraught, the Offerings; everything comes together in a way that is surprising and impacting, a way that keeps us thinking about our own world. The issues Carmody confronts are just as relevant today, if not more so, as they were when Scatterlings was first published over 20 years ago. It says a lot about this book, I think, that it fits right in with the dystopian trend today. It's a merit to Carmody. I'd say the biggest downside to the novel is that Carmody does practice a lot of telling rather than showing, and so sometimes the story felt frustratingly slow. This is made up for by the truths that are revealed, when pushed through.

I don't exactly feel like I got to know Carmody's characters very well. Scatterlings is entirely from Merlin's point of view, so yes, we know her. But only as much as she knows herself, considering her amnesia. As for the rest of the characters, they all play a part, some quite significant. They effect the story and even Merlin, but still, they're not much more than that. Merlin is an interesting MC, relying a lot on her wit and instincts. Thankfully they're pretty good. She doesn't really form any truly solid relationships with anyone but Ford, and even that one is somewhat shaky. It's not quite a romance, despite Ford wanting that, but I guess it's a beginning. I was still intrigued by many of Carmody's characters though. The history of the scatterlings and the Clansfolk for instance, and the way their relationships work, like between Ford, Aran and Meer. The former two are brothers and Meer was at one time meant to be attached to Ford but ended up with Aran because of circumstances. But by attached I mean mindbonded. Yeah. In every way Carmody created a whole new world - entirely new beliefs and traditions, but based enough in our own so as to be somewhat familiar. The Rememberers, like Marthe, who see the future are cool, much like all those who have the telepathic ability. It's a fascinating evolution. Then there are the Citizen gods who are so unchanged. Carmody's characters may not be delved into in depth, as it were, but they definitely offer the most commentary. Though her story is in some ways confronting, there's a layer of hope to it that's uplifting. A new beginning. If Carmody were to ever write a sequel, I'd be eager to read where she took this world and her characters.

Scatterlings is a compelling dystopian, one that will keep you thinking.


Saturday, November 14, 2015

Stacking the Shelves (72)

Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews. Share all of the bookish goodies you got during the week!


Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
Soundless by Richelle Mead
Lost Ocean by Johanna Basford

Yep, I totally succumbed and bought a colouring book! I had planned to wait for the Harry Potter one only, but I saw this one on special and couldn't resist. I was so desperate for Soundless that I hunted it down. It took two different shopping centers, but I found a copy! I read an except a while back and have been so eager for more ever since that I just had to have it immediately. I was a tad miffed that it wasn't readily available everywhere to be honest. Tsk!

Anything new added to your shelves this week? Link me to your post so that I can pop over!

Friday, November 13, 2015

Feature & Follow Friday: Funny Books

Feature & Follow Friday is hosted by Rachel over at Parajunkee's View and Alison of Alison Can Read. This is a chance to get to know fellow book bloggers and have them meet you. Be sure to pop over and meet this week's featured bloggers!

What are the funniest books you've ever read?

Wow, this question is harder than I first thought. I don't actually read much humour. I always tell people I have a weird sense of humour, because often the kinds of comedies that are the most popular, I just find stupid. I'm cheesy, to be honest, so I like the corny stuff. I'm trying to think of some funny books and all I'm coming up with is Barry Trotter and the Shameless Parody by Michael Gerber. I read it years and years ago but clearly remember laughing my ass off! Also, Team Human by Sarah Rees Brennan and Justine Larbalestier, I guess. I didn't find it laugh out loud funny, but I did smirk and snort a lot at their poking fun at the vampire trend.

What are the funniest books you've read? Recommend some to me! I should probably try a little more humour.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Waiting on This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jill of Breaking the Spine. It spotlights soon to be released books that can't come quick enough!

I'm intrigued by...

This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab

Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Published Date: 7 June 2016
Pre-Order: Amazon | The Book Depository | Dymocks Australia

The city of Verity has been overrun with monsters, born from the worst of human evil. In North Verity, the Corsai and the Malchai run free. Under the rule of Callum Harker, the monsters kill any human who has not paid for protection. In the South, Henry Flynn hunts the monsters who cross the border into his territory, aided by the most dangerous and darkest monsters of them all—the Sunai, dark creatures who use music to steal their victim’s souls.

As one of only three Sunai in existence, August Flynn has always wanted to play a bigger role in the war between the north and the south. When the chance arises to keep an eye on Kate Harker, daughter of the leader of North Verity, August jumps on it.
When Kate discovers August’s secret, the pair find themselves running for their lives and battling monsters from both sides of the wall. As the city dissolves into chaos, it’s up to them to foster a peace between monsters and humans.

A unique, fast-paced adventure that looks at the monsters we face every day—including the monster within.
(summary from Goodreads)

Oooh, monsters! I unfortunately haven't read a lot of Victoria Schwab's works, but I've read enough to know I have to change that. Definitely adding this one to the good ol' TBR list!

What book are you pining for this week?

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Top Ten Book To Movie Adaptations I'm Looking Forward To

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme started over at The Broke and The Bookish. Each week they have a specific topic for a top ten list. Link up, visit some new blogs and add to your ever growing TBR list! This week's topic is:

Top Ten Book to Movie Adaptations I'm Looking Forward to

I definitely can't wait to see all of these. Some, like Daughter of Smoke and Bone and The Night Circus aren't exactly in the works yet, but I'm holding out hope. 13 Reasons Why is actually going to be a series on Netflix, but I figure it still counts. I only read Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children recently and while I didn't love it, the fact that Tim Burton is making it is awesome and ensures it's a must see!

What book to movie (or TV) adaptations are you desperately waiting to see?