Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Wishlist Wednesday (12)

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery
Wishlist Wednesday is a weekly Meme hosted at Pen to Paper

This week I'm wishing for...

Reboot by Amy Tintera 

Summary from Amazon:

"In this fast-paced dystopian thrill ride, a seventeen-year-old girl rises from the dead as a Reboot and is trained as an elite crime-fighting soldier . . . until she is given an order she refuses to obey.

Five years ago, Wren Connolly was shot three times in the chest. After 178 minutes, she came back to life as a Reboot—stronger, faster, able to heal, but less emotional. The longer Reboots are dead, the less human they are when they return, making Wren 178 the deadliest Reboot in the Republic of Texas.

Callum 22, on the other hand, is practically still human. He's the worst trainee Wren has ever had—his reflexes are too slow, he's always asking pesky questions, and his ever-present smile is freaking her out. Yet he's still her newbie. When Callum fails to measure up to Reboot standards, Wren is told to eliminate him. Wren has never disobeyed before, but she'll do whatever it takes to save Callum's life.

The perfect soldier is done taking orders." 

Why I'm Wishing for It:
I have heard sooooooo much about this book. And everything I've heard has been positive. Everyone is just raving about this book. This means that it just has to be amazing, right? Plus it sounds like something right up my alley, so I'm really hoping to get my hands on this one soon. 

What about you? What are you wishing for this week?

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Book Review: Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter by Seth Grahame Smith

Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter by Seth Grahame Smith
Release Date: 19th April 2011
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
Format: Paperback 
Pages: 352
Rating: 3.5/5.0

This book was read as part of the 2013 OTS and 2013 ODY

Summary from Amazon:
buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery"Indiana, 1818. Moonlight falls through the dense woods that surround a one-room cabin, where a nine-year-old Abraham Lincoln kneels at his suffering mother's bedside. She's been stricken with something the old-timers call "Milk Sickness."

"My baby boy..." she whispers before dying.

Only later will the grieving Abe learn that his mother's fatal affliction was actually the work of a vampire.

When the truth becomes known to young Lincoln, he writes in his journal, "henceforth my life shall be one of rigorous study and devotion. I shall become a master of mind and body. And this mastery shall have but one purpose..." Gifted with his legendary height, strength, and skill with an ax, Abe sets out on a path of vengeance that will lead him all the way to the White House.

While Abraham Lincoln is widely lauded for saving a Union and freeing millions of slaves, his valiant fight against the forces of the undead has remained in the shadows for hundreds of years. That is, until Seth Grahame-Smith stumbled upon The Secret Journal of Abraham Lincoln, and became the first living person to lay eyes on it in more than 140 years.

Using the journal as his guide and writing in the grand biographical style of Doris Kearns Goodwin and David McCullough, Seth has reconstructed the true life story of our greatest president for the first time-all while revealing the hidden history behind the Civil War and uncovering the role vampires played in the birth, growth, and near-death of our nation"

I have mixed feelings about this one.

On the one hand, I enjoyed how smart this book was. It was very clever to intertwine Abraham Lincoln as a Vampire Hunter with historical events such as the Civil War and the abolishment of slavery. And it's done brilliantly. It all makes perfect sense, and it really makes Ab Lincoln a more interested character - literally everything he does is influenced by vampires - his entire life is re-imagined. For that I have to give the book props.

On the other hand, it wasn't until the last third of the book or so that I actually really got into it. Until then, the book was plodding along, but I didn't find anything particularly thrilling about it. It was more like one account of a vampire killing after another, and that didn't particularly pull me in. Also, I have issues with the ending, major issues.

Overall, the last third of the book or so really made it for me. The way that vampirism was worked into the life and history of Abraham Lincoln was done so well, that you could almost finish the book believing that this all actually happened. I've no doubt that many, many people would enjoy this read.  

Friday, July 26, 2013

Wishlist Wednesday (11)

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery
Wishlist Wednesday is a weekly Meme hosted at Pen to Paper

I know, I know, I'm terribly late. Basically my laptop has some issues and needs to be fixed, and I've finally got my backup laptop working - so here I am!

This week I'm wishing for...

Unbreakable by Kami Garcia

Summary from Amazon:

"I never believed in ghosts. Until one tried to kill me.

When Kennedy Waters finds her mother dead, her world begins to unravel. She doesn't know that paranormal forces in a much darker world are the ones pulling the strings. Not until identical twins Jared and Lukas Lockhart break into Kennedy's room and destroy a dangerous spirit sent to kill her. The brothers reveal that her mother was part of an ancient secret society responsible for protecting the world from a vengeful demon -- a society whose five members were all murdered on the same night.

Now Kennedy has to take her mother's place in the Legion if she wants to uncover the truth and stay alive. Along with new Legion members Priest and Alara, the teens race to find the only weapon that might be able to destroy the demon -- battling the deadly spirits he controls every step of the way." 

Why I'm Wishing for It:
Last week I featured Icons by Margaret Stohl, so I thought why not feature the other author of The Caster Chronicles Kami Garcia? I came across this a couple of weeks ago through the blogosphere, and after reading the summary, I had to add it to my wishlist. The blurb makes it sound a lot like Anna Dressed in Blood, which I loved because of the battling evil spirits side, so I've no doubt that I'll enjoy this one too.

What about you? What are you wishing for this week?

Monday, July 22, 2013

Movie News: Catching Fire Theatrical Trailer

Guys. GUYS. Guess what I just saw.

HOW AWESOME DOES IT LOOK! Everything looks brilliant - the arena, all the tributes, all those city shots of Panem, and that Mockingjay dress - it just looks so good! And you can tell that we've got a bigger budget (did you see those special effects!?!) = AWESOME.

Here's hoping that the movie is as awesome as the trailer makes it look - I'm really excited for this one, since Catching Fire was my fave novel in the trilogy - let's hope it lives up to expectations! (I'm sure it will)

Is it just me, or is everyone else just as excited as I am?!?

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Book Review: A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire #1) by George R.R. Martin

A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire #1) by George R.R. Martin
Release Date: 1st December 1997
Publisher: Bantam Books
Format: eBook
Pages: 864
Rating: 5.0/5.0

This book was read as part of the 2013 OTS, 2013 ODY, 2013 EBC and 2013 BSR

Summary from Amazon:
buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery"Long ago, in a time forgotten, a preternatural event threw the seasons out of balance. In a land where summers can last decades and winters a lifetime, trouble is brewing. The cold is returning, and in the frozen wastes to the north of Winterfell, sinister and supernatural forces are massing beyond the kingdom’s protective Wall. At the center of the conflict lie the Starks of Winterfell, a family as harsh and unyielding as the land they were born to. Sweeping from a land of brutal cold to a distant summertime kingdom of epicurean plenty, here is a tale of lords and ladies, soldiers and sorcerers, assassins and bastards, who come together in a time of grim omens.

Here an enigmatic band of warriors bear swords of no human metal; a tribe of fierce wildlings carry men off into madness; a cruel young dragon prince barters his sister to win back his throne; and a determined woman undertakes the most treacherous of journeys. Amid plots and counterplots, tragedy and betrayal, victory and terror, the fate of the Starks, their allies, and their enemies hangs perilously in the balance, as each endeavors to win that deadliest of conflicts: the game of thrones."

It's been quite some time between reading this book and actually writing the review, so let me keep this short in order to actually get across what I really want to say.

I loved this book. I had no doubt that I wouldn't. For years I've had people telling me to read the series, or watch the TV show. I really do want to watch the show, but before I want to read at least the first two novels in the series. So I finally got around to reading A Game of Thrones, and I wish I had read it sooner.

I think what I enjoyed the most about this book was the number of different narrators it had. There were no less than eight different narrators, each having their time to shine (some more than others). Sometimes, when employing this technique you run the risk of having some chapters more interesting than others. But that didn't happen here. Everything was interesting, from Jon Snow at The Wall, to Eddard Stark in Kings Landing, even the chapters with Sansa, which I did find painful at times just because I found Sansa painful. 

I quite enjoyed everything about this book - the plot, the setting, the characters - everything! Can't recommend this book enough.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Wishlist Wednesday (10)

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery
Wishlist Wednesday is a weekly Meme hosted at Pen to Paper

This week I'm wishing for...

Icons by Margaret Stohl

Summary from Amazon:

"Your heart beats only with their permission.

Everything changed on The Day. The day the windows shattered. The day the power stopped. The day Dol's family dropped dead. The day Earth lost a war it didn't know it was fighting.

Since then, Dol has lived a simple life in the countryside -- safe from the shadow of the Icon and its terrifying power. Hiding from the one truth she can't avoid.

She's different. She survived. Why?

When Dol and her best friend, Ro, are captured and taken to the Embassy, off the coast of the sprawling metropolis once known as the City of Angels, they find only more questions. While Ro and fellow hostage Tima rage against their captors, Dol finds herself drawn to Lucas, the Ambassador's privileged son. But the four teens are more alike than they might think, and the timing of their meeting isn't a coincidence. It's a conspiracy.

Within the Icon's reach, Dol, Ro, Tima, and Lucas discover that their uncontrollable emotions -- which they've always thought to be their greatest weaknesses -- may actually be their greatest strengths.

Bestselling author Margaret Stohl delivers the first book in a heart-pounding series set in a haunting new world where four teens must piece together the mysteries of their pasts -- in order to save the future." 

Why I'm Wishing for It:
I saw a lot about this online when it first came out a month or two ago, and it all seemed to be positive. Plus, Margaret Stohl is the author, who was one half of the authoring team who wrote The Caster Chronicles series, which I'm still reading and am enjoying immensely. I have no doubt that this will be a great book, I just have to get my hands on it!

What about you? What are you wishing for this week?

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Wishlist Wednesday (9)

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery
Wishlist Wednesday is a weekly Meme hosted at Pen to Paper

This week I'm wishing for...

The Dark Heroine: Dinner with a Vampire by Abigail Gibbs

Summary from Amazon:

"When party girl Violet Lee stumbles upon the charming and wicked vampire Kaspar Varn, she embarks on a dangerous adventure through London’s darkest streets and poshest neighbourhoods. As their attraction is undeniable, the pair succumb to their desires, but at what cost?" 

Why I'm Wishing for It:
I've had my eye on this one for a while now. I remember I was just perusing the local book store one day when this one's amazing cover caught my eye. I read the blurb and was intrigued further. I still pass this book from time to time, but I'm trying to hold out until it's reduced in price - then I'll snap this one up for sure!

What about you? What are you wishing for this week?

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Book Review: The Perks of being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

The Perks of being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
Release Date: 14th August 2012
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Format: eBook
Pages: 136
Rating: 4.5/5.0

This book was read as part of the 2013 OTS, 2013 ODY and 2013 EBC

Summary from Amazon:
buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery"The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a story about what it’s like to travel that strange course through the uncharted territory of high school. The world of first dates, family dramas, and new friends. Of sex, drugs, and The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Of those wild and poignant roller-coaster days known as growing up."

For the past year or so, it's become a bit of a thing for me to go out of my way to read the book before watching the movie or tv series. So when I heard that The Perks of being a Wallflower was being turned into a movie, I added the novel onto my reading list. Finally I've gotten around to reading the book, and I found that I quite enjoyed it.

The story is told through a series of letters Charlie writes to an unidentified person. I loved this style as they allowed Charlie to really open up to us, and we learn more than we might otherwise have learnt. I like how the letters also reflect how Charlie changes throughout the year and his growth - in the beginning, is letters are jumbled and a clear line of thought is hard to come by. When something pops into his head, he just writes it down, no matter how inappropriate it might be. But as time goes on, Charlie's letters mature; they become more cohesive and coherent, and I think this reflects how Charlie grows and matures as the book progresses. 

Plus, this book deals with some pretty heavy issues, including teen pregnancy, abusive relationships, sexual identity, drug use, and suicide. Props to the author for tackling the issues that were affecting teens during his time, and still continue to affect teens today. Also, props for being able to do so in such a short novel - the version I have only has 136 pages. For such a short book, it really is able to deal with a look of issues, which are all brought together by a solid plot and great characters. Overall, it's a sad read, but one that I thoroughly enjoyed. 

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