Saturday, 30 April 2016

The Dickens Mirror (Dark Passages #2) by Ilsa J. Bick

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Egmont USA and NetGalley.
The Dickens Mirror (Dark Passages, #2)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Critically acclaimed author of The Ashes Trilogy, Ilsa J. Bick takes her new Dark Passages series to an alternative Victorian London where Emma Lindsay continues to wade through blurred realities now that she has lost everything: her way, her reality, her friends. In this London, Emma will find alternative versions of her friends from the White Space and even Arthur Conan Doyle.

Emma Lindsay finds herself with nowhere to go, no place to call home. Her friends are dead. Eric, the perfect boy she wrote into being, and his brother, Casey, are lost to the Dark Passages. With no way of knowing where she belongs, she commands the cynosure, a beacon and lens that allows for safe passage between the Many Worlds, to put her where she might find her friends—find Eric—again. What she never anticipated was waking up in the body of Little Lizzie, all grown up—or that, in this alternative London, Elizabeth McDermott is mad.

In this London, Tony and Rima are “rats,” teens who gather the dead to be used for fuel. Their friend, Bode, is an attendant at Bedlam, where Elizabeth has been committed after being rescued by Arthur Conan Doyle, a drug-addicted constable.

Tormented by the voices of all the many characters based on her, all Elizabeth wants is to get rid of the pieces under her skin once and for all. While professing to treat Elizabeth, her physician, Dr. Kramer, has actually drugged her to allow Emma—who’s blinked to this London before—to emerge as the dominant personality…because Kramer has plans. Elizabeth is the key to finding and accessing the Dickens Mirror.

But Elizabeth is dying, and if Emma can’t find a way out, everyone as they exist in this London, as well as the twelve-year-old version of herself and the shadows—what remains of Eric, Casey, and Rima that she pulled with her from the Dark Passages—will die with her.

The Dickens Mirror by Ilsa J. Bick

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The Dickens Mirror (Dark Passages, #2) “Tell me where the mirror is and how to use it,”

This was a very odd story, in fact it might have been stranger than the first book.

There were multiple characters in this, and characters who were doubles – so we had 2 ‘Tony’s for instance, and it was all very confusing as to which character was which, how they related to each other, and even how to keep them straight when one character claimed to be both Elizabeth and Emma.

“Just because you keep waking up in the same body? How do you know that whatever you wake up in is yours?

The storyline in this was very confusing, with strange settings, and even stranger conversations. We had characters who weren’t sure if they were real or whether they were the product of an author’s imagination, weird discussions about whether dreams meant that you were real or unreal, and just generally what seemed like utter nonsense. I had hoped that we’d get some answers in this book as to what was going on, but I’ve finished it and I’m still pretty lost.

“I knew it. We’re the originals. These others are only impostors and pieces.”

6 out of 10

Friday, 29 April 2016

Pieces of You and Me by Erin Fletcher

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Entangled Publishing, LLC and NetGalley.
Pieces of You and Me
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Disclaimer: This Entangled Teen Crush book contains references to drinking, addiction, and just the right amount of angst. You’ll want to save this tortured hero, while at the same time, not want to change a single thing about him!

Five years.

That’s how long I’ve been gone. Since I left my best friend—the girl I loved—behind.

Five seconds.

That's how long it takes to realize I am completely, utterly, screwed. Because now that I’m back, my childhood crush has turned into so much more.

Rylee has changed. We both have. And now I’m drawn to her in a completely different way. To her smile. Her touch. To reliving old memories and making new ones. To the happiness she’s always given me that I haven’t felt since I left.

But her friends are hell-bent on keeping us apart. My dad is one drink away from destroying both of our lives, and maybe I am, too. It’s only a matter of time before I have to leave again, and there’s nothing I can do to stop it. I never get a choice.

The one choice I can make? Stay away from Rylee. Because if I don’t, I’ll break her heart—and mine—all over again.

Pieces of You and Me by Erin Fletcher

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Pieces of You and Me “Rylee Dunn, the girl I’d loved forever, kissed me back.”

This was a YA contemporary romance story about a couple who had been separated for 5 years.

Rylee was an okay character and seemed determined to work hard and put things behind her, whilst Chase seemed content to do as little as possible at school, and wasn’t sure if getting to know Rylee again was a good idea.

The storyline in this was about the relationship between Rylee and Chase, although we didn’t get all that much romance really. I did find the pace in this a bit slow because of the lack of romance, and it did drag a bit for me.

The ending to this was fairly happy, but this story was just missing something for me.

6 out of 10

Thursday, 28 April 2016

Down with the Shine by Kate Karyus Quinn

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.
Down with the Shine
Blurb (from Goodreads):
There's a reason they say "be careful what you wish for." Just ask the girl who wished to be thinner and ended up smaller than Thumbelina, or the boy who asked for "balls of steel" and got them-literally. And never wish for your party to go on forever. Not unless you want your guests to be struck down by debilitating pain if they try to leave.

These are things Lennie only learns when it's too late-after she brings some of her uncles' moonshine to a party and toasts to dozens of wishes, including a big wish of her own: to bring back her best friend, Dylan, who was abducted and murdered six months ago.

Lennie didn't mean to cause so much chaos. She always thought her uncles' moonshine toast was just a tradition. And when they talked about carrying on their "important family legacy," she thought they meant good old-fashioned bootlegging.

As it turns out, they meant granting wishes. And Lennie has just granted more in one night than her uncles would grant in a year.

Now she has to find a way to undo the damage. But once granted, a wish can't be unmade...

Down with the Shine by Kate Karyus Quinn

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Down with the Shine “I wish,” he says, his voice pitched low but easily reaching the ears of everyone in that hushed kitchen. “To be there when you get what you deserve.”

This was a YA magical-realism story about a girl who could grant wishes.

Lennie was an interesting character, and it was quite funny how she had no idea she could grant wishes. She dealt with the news pretty well though, and tried her hardest to put right the wishes she made.

The storyline in this was about Lennie granting a bunch of wishes and the consequences of those wishes. Some of the wishes were really quite bad, and the consequences really severe, and Lennie had to make a really bold move to try and rectify the chaos she had caused.

The ending to this was pretty good, although Lennie did risk a lot to accomplish what she did.

6.5 out of 10

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

This One's For You by Brandy Jellum

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Booktrope and NetGalley.
This One's For You
Blurb (from Goodreads):
All alone in a new state, Brennan Daniels has only the memories of her best friend, Reagan, to keep her company as she starts college.

Reagan is the reason for everything Brennan does—before she died, she made Brennan promise to stay good until she found a man worth keeping. No boys, no dating, and definitely no falling in love—those were the rules for college, and Brennan carved them into the brick walls guarding her heart…

But there’s a fire burning behind those walls, and when Brennan meets Owen Scott, the (mysterious) new guy across the hall, she can’t deny the pull between them. He is everything she should never want. Everyone warns her to stay away—even Owen himself—but the heart wants what the heart wants, even if it knows that it’s going to get hurt—even if it means throwing old promises to new flames…

This One's For You by Brandy Jellum

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This One's For You “Last summer I made a pact – one I had every intention of keeping. It was a simple one: no boys, no dating, and certainly no falling in love my freshman year.”

This was a NA contemporary romance story, with a bit of mystery.

Brennan and Owen were both hiding things from each other and both had things that they were trying to work through, they both made some mistakes also though, and the course of their relationship didn’t run smoothly.

The storyline in this was about the romance, and we also got storylines about the things that the two main characters were hiding from each other. The romance seemed to go from Brennan hating Owen to loving him really fast though, and then we got this really long drawn out rubbish about them only being friends! Owen also made some really rubbish decisions romance wise as well, because getting a lap dance from some skanky girl is a great way to show that you love someone.
The mystery angle was okay, although for me it took way too long for us to actually find anything out, which made the book drag a bit.

The ending to this was fairly happy, it just seemed to take forever to get there.

6 out of 10

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

The Art of Not Breathing by Sarah Alexander

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Children's Book Group and NetGalley.
The Art of Not Breathing
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Since her twin brother, Eddie, drowned five years ago, sixteen-year-old Elsie Main has tried to remember what really happened that fateful day on the beach. One minute Eddie was there, and the next he was gone. Seventeen-year-old Tay McKenzie is a cute and mysterious boy that Elsie meets in her favorite boathouse hangout. When Tay introduces Elsie to the world of freediving, she vows to find the answers she seeks at the bottom of the sea.

The Art of Not Breathing by Sarah Alexander

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The Art of Not Breathing “New things I remember about that day:
1. Dillion wasn’t swimming back to look for Eddie. He was looking for someone else.”

This was a YA contemporary story about a girl whose twin brother had drowned.

Elsie came across as a bit depressed, she seemed to have no drive, a reluctance to do anything other than wonder what had happened to her brother, and she seemed generally a bit lost.

The storyline in this was about Elsie trying to find out what had happened to her twin brother, and why he drowned. We also got a bit of a romance storyline, and the story touched on Elsie’s other brother’s eating disorder.

The ending to this had a couple of twists, and I didn’t guess what had really happened to Elsie’s twin.

6.25 out of 10

Monday, 25 April 2016

The Mirror King (The Orphan Queen #2) by Jodi Meadows

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.
The Mirror King (The Orphan Queen #2)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
In this stunning conclusion to The Orphan Queen, Jodi Meadows follows Wilhelmina’s breathtaking and brave journey from orphaned criminal on the streets to magic-wielding queen. This epic fantasy duology is perfect for fans of Graceling by Kristin Cashore, The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson, and Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo.

Princess Wilhelmina is ready for her crown, but declaring herself queen means war. Her magic is uncontrollable and now there’s a living boy made of wraith—destructive and deadly, and willing to do anything for her.

Caught between what she wants and what is right, Wilhelmina realizes the throne might not even matter. Everyone thought the wraith was years off, but already it’s destroying Indigo Kingdom villages. Princess Wilhelmina’s ability might be just the thing to help reclaim her kingdom—or ruin it forever.

The Mirror King by Jodi Meadows

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The Mirror King (The Orphan Queen #2) “I couldn’t let you die.”

This was a YA fantasy story which picked up right where The Orphan Queen left off.

Wil was a strong leader in this and proved how determined she was to be queen. She did have some problems restraining her wraith friend though.

The storyline in this did lose me a bit and I felt quite bored. There was something that happened at the 43% mark which made me sit up and take a bit more interest, but I soon worked out that I was mainly reading this for the romance rather than any of the other storylines, which was a bit disappointing.

The ending to this was pretty good, and I was satisfied with the way things worked out.

6 out of 10.

Perfect Sense by Amanda Cowen - Book Blitz + Giveaway

Perfect Sense
Amanda Cowen
(Perfect Series, #1)
Publication date: March 22nd 2016
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult
He’s gorgeous.
He’s reckless.
And he’s every woman’s dirty fantasy in the state of California.., except one… Quinn Ashby.
Recent graduate of Penn and top of her class, Quinn is whip smart, ambitious and interning as the new marketing coordinator for the Bexley Bruisers American Hockey League team. The last thing she needs is to waste her time on guys…especially one as lethal to her focus as Cash Brooks.
But once the bad boy hockey star tempts her into his world, threatening her professional future, she’s forced to decide whether to let him into her heart…or to leave him behind forever.

I round the corner into the secluded hall leading to the washrooms, and my heart stops. Cash on the ice, sweaty and dressed in hockey equipment, was sexy, but the Cash sitting feet away, wearing an expensive modern-fit, pastel brown suit, is insanely hot. I eye the two women perched on either side of him on the red velvet chaise. To his right, a long-haired blonde with extensions rests a possessive hand on his chest. To his left, a woman with jet black hair toys with her side ponytail while running the fingers of her other hand through his wavy honey-colored hair.
His piercing blue gaze snaps to mine, and he tilts his head to the side, studying me. A cocky grin curves his full lips. I move forward, unable to breathe as his stare slides down my peplum dress, stopping once at my breasts and once at my hips. His eyes lock with mine and I fiddle with the gold-toned slider bracelet around my wrist. He pushes up from the chaise, abandoning the two women feeling him up in the corner. I turn away, and as my palm slams against the door of the ladies room, a big, warm hand closes around my wrist.
Cash spins me around and I press back against the wall beside the door. He cages me, his palms flat on either side of my head. He leans toward me, his mouth inches from my face, so close I can the warmth of his breath tickling my cheek. He smells ridiculously good, like honey and cinnamon.
“Mittens,” he whispers, his mouth dangerously close to my lips. “I didn’t peg you as the stalking type, especially since you took off after I scored that hard-earned goal for you.”
What an arrogant bastard!
I arch an eyebrow at him. “Excuse me? Do I know you?”
His eyes flicker, and his lips curl in amusement. “Come on, Quinn. I don’t ever forget a pretty face. I’m willing to bet you don’t forget one either.”
My heart pounds as I glare into his sharp baby blues. His sexy athletic build towers over me. He makes me feel even more petite than usual. I try to ignore the rise and fall on his muscular chest, but despite myself my nipples harden.
Even though my body is betraying me, I refuse to act like every other puck bunny, falling at his feet. “You’re really full of yourself, aren’t you?” I say. “Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to use the ladies room.”
He chuckles, “How about you stop playing games with me and admit you came here looking for me.”
I shoot him a disgusted look. “I’m not here for you.”
Cash smiles at me with what I am guessing to be one of his most charmingly rehearsed expressions. He cocks his head to the side then bites his bottom lip like he is thinking about something. “Alright, since you want to play it that way…” He leans in close enough that I feel his stubble brush against my cheek. “Can I buy you a drink?”
An unwelcome shiver of awareness shoots up my spine. “Listen, asshole. I am Hilton Ashby’s daughter and the newest employee in the Marketing and Promotions Department for the Bruisers. So if you wouldn’t mind stepping aside so I can freshen up, I would really appreciate it.”
Cash’s dimples deepen, and a dangerous grin pulls at the corners of his lips. “Perfect, now I know where I can find you.”
I feel myself weaken for a brief second at his smile, until I remind myself this guy is nothing but trouble. Wrapping my fingers tightly around his tie, I yank him against my chest, and whisper in his ear, “Stay away from me, Brooks. I don’t do arrogant dickheads.”
Cash looks straight into my eyes, his grin still in place. He runs a callused fingertip along my collarbone. “I’m not going anywhere.” He leans down, his lips close to mine. “I promise you, this is just the beginning.”
When he steps back, I have to press my back hard against the wall to keep myself from sliding down to the floor. He runs his thumb possessively over my lips, before he turns around and walks over to his two voluptuous dates waiting for him on the chaise.
I inhale a sharp breath, before I push open the door into the ladies room. I collapse into one of the stalls unable to breathe. I can still feel where Cash’s stubble touched the side of my face and wonder how I am ever going to survive this internship.

Author Bio:
Amanda Cowen can be found eating cupcakes, singing off-key, or watching a good RomCom when she isn’t trapped on her computer writing stories and delighting her imagination. She has been writing since the ripe age of twelve about ponies and princesses in brightly colored duo-tangs with metallic pens. Thankfully, she now has a Mac with a keyboard where she can write about love, sex and relationships. She is an “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” fanatic, a hater of roller-coasters and a country music junkie. She lives in Thunder Bay, ON where the summers are short and the winters are long.
Her next Contemporary Romance/New Adult Fiction novel TAINTED (The Wyatt Series #1) will be available in Summer 2014.
Amanda would love to hear from her readers. Contact her via her website, www., become a fan on Facebook, follow her on Goodreads, or visit her blog.

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Sunday, 24 April 2016

Crazy, Stupid, Fauxmance (Creative HeArts #3) by Shellee Roberts

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Entangled Publishing, LLC and NetGalley.
Crazy, Stupid, Fauxmance (Creative HeArts, #3; Mariely and Cabot #1)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
 Disclaimer: This Entangled Teen Crush book contains a kickass heroine, a boy so hot he’ll make you shiver, and a falling-in-love story fit for the big screen. You’ll want to settle in and have the popcorn ready.

After Mariely Hinojosa and Cabot Wheeler both break up with their significant others at the same party, Mariely sees a way to get even with both of their exes. Everyone knows that the best way to get over a breakup is a hookup—a fake hookup, that is. Three weeks, all fun, no strings, and definitely no heartbreak at the end.

But somewhere between the sweet hand-holding and melt-your-mind kisses, their fake relationship starts to feel less like an act and more like the real thing...but Mariely’s a free-spirited girl from the other side of the tracks, and Cabot’s the hot trust-fund guy from the Hills.

They’d never work for real...

Crazy, Stupid, Fauxmance by Shellee Roberts

My rating: 3.12 of 5 stars

Crazy, Stupid, Fauxmance (Creative HeArts, #3; Mariely and Cabot #1) “You know what they say, Audrey, the best way to get over a breakup is a hookup.”

This was a YA contemporary romance featuring a fake relationship.

I liked characters in this, and both of them had just had bad break-ups. I could see what Mariely thought everybody was talking about her though when her boyfriend turned out to be gay. It was also good to catch up with Willa from the previous book in the series.

The storyline in this was about Mariely and Cabot starting a fake relationship to try and get over their old relationships, but unexpectedly falling for each other, which was kind of sweet.

The ending to this was pretty good, and it will be interesting to see what happens in the next book in the series.

6.25 out of 10

Saturday, 23 April 2016

The Dead House by Dawn Kurtagic

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Hachette Children's Group and NetGalley.
The Dead House
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Part-psychological thriller, part-urban legend, this is an unsettling narrative made up of diary entries, interview transcripts, film footage transcripts and medical notes. Twenty-five years ago, Elmbridge High burned down. Three people were killed and one pupil, Carly Johnson, disappeared. Now a diary has been found in the ruins of the school. The diary belongs to Kaitlyn Johnson, Carly’s identical twin sister. But Carly didn’t have a twin . . .

Re-opened police records, psychiatric reports, transcripts of video footage and fragments of diary reveal a web of deceit and intrigue, violence and murder, raising a whole lot more questions than it answers.

Who was Kaitlyn and why did she only appear at night? Did she really exist or was she a figment of a disturbed mind? What were the illicit rituals taking place at the school? And just what did happen at Elmbridge in the events leading up to ‘the Johnson Incident’?

Chilling, creepy and utterly compelling, THE DEAD HOUSE is one of those very special books that finds all the dark places in your imagination, and haunts you long after you've finished reading.

The Dead House by Dawn Kurtagich

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

The Dead House “My doctor is convinced that I’m not really here. She keeps trying to convince me of it, too.”

This book was just not for me.

The characters in this were slightly strange as they had one body and 2 personalities, and these personalities could only speak to each other by leaving post-it notes for the other to find.

The storyline in this was just all over the place. We had notebook entries, discussions with doctors, post-it notes, and other weird communications and recordings, and the story was just really hard to pick out. The pace dragged, nothing seemed to be happening, and I got really frustrated.

The ending was also a bit unclear, and it still wasn’t obvious what exactly had happened.

4 out of 10

Friday, 22 April 2016

Future Shock by Elizabeth Briggs

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Albert Whitman & Company and NetGalley.
Future Shock
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Elena Martinez has hidden her eidetic memory all her life--or so she thinks. When powerful tech giant Aether Corporation selects her for a top-secret project, she can't say no. All she has to do is participate in a trip to the future to bring back data, and she'll be set for life.

Elena joins a team of four other teens with special skills, including Adam, a science prodigy with his own reason for being there. But when the time travelers arrive in the future, something goes wrong and they break the only rule they were given: do not look into their own fates.

Now they have twenty-four hours to get back to the present and find a way to stop a seemingly inevitable future from unfolding. With time running out and deadly secrets uncovered, Elena must use her eidetic memory, street smarts, and a growing trust in Adam to save her new friends and herself.

Future Shock by Elizabeth Briggs

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Future Shock “I have to know why I’m not in the system. Even if it damages my brain, I need to know my fate.”

This was a YA sci-fi story about a group of teens sent to the future.

I totally understood Elena’s helplessness at the beginning of this book, being nearly 18 and about to be kicked out of foster care with nowhere else to go must be really scary, and the fact that no one would give her a job was awful too.

The storyline in this was about Elena and 4 other teens being sent into the future by 30 years by some scientists. Once in the future they begin to worry that they maybe didn’t exist anymore, and decide to look their future selves up, even though they’d been told not to, and from there we got a bit of a mystery unravelling over what had happened to them in the 30 years they’d jumped forward. The pace in this was quite slow though, and I lost interest a bit as the story went along.

The ending to this was okay, although we did get some deaths!

6 out of 10

Thursday, 21 April 2016

In the Dark, In the Woods by Eliza Wass

Sponsored post: I was able to view a digital galley of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Hachette Children's Group and NetGalley.
In the Dark, In the Woods
Blurb (from Goodreads):
The woods were insane in the dark, terrifying and magical at the same time. But best of all were the stars, which trumpeted their light into the misty dark.

Castella Cresswell and her five siblings—Hannan, Caspar, Mortimer, Delvive, and Jerusalem—know what it’s like to be different. For years, their world has been confined to their ramshackle family home deep in the woods of upstate New York. They abide by the strict rule of God, whose messages come directly from their father.

Slowly, Castley and her siblings start to test the boundaries of the laws that bind them. But, at school, they’re still the freaks they’ve always been to the outside world. Marked by their plain clothing. Unexplained bruising. Utter isolation from their classmates. That is, until Castley is forced to partner with the totally irritating, totally normal George Gray, who offers her a glimpse of a life filled with freedom and choice.

Castley’s world rapidly expands beyond the woods she knows so well and the beliefs she once thought were the only truths. There is a future waiting for her if she can escape her father’s grasp, but Castley refuses to leave her siblings behind. Just as she begins to form a plan, her father makes a chilling announcement: the Cresswells will soon return to their home in heaven. With time running out on all of their lives, Castley must expose the depth of her father’s lies. The forest has buried the truth in darkness for far too long. Castley might be their last hope for salvation.

In the Dark, In the Woods by Eliza Wass

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

In the Dark, In the Woods “Keep your eyes fixed firmly on heaven. That is where we belong.”

This was quite an odd story about a group of siblings ruled by their father and his strong beliefs.

I felt quite sorry for Castella in this story because all she really wanted was to be a normal girl, and not to be held to all these strange rules by her father. She did make some less than intelligent decisions at times, but I think this was mainly due to her strange upbringing.

The storyline in this was about Castella’s life, and her siblings lives, and the strange way they lived. I found it quite odd the way Castella was supposed to marry her own brother when she was older, and how they were supposed to live a set way, and I really did wonder whether her father was suffering from a mental illness based on the way he treated his family.

The ending to this was quite weird, but wasn’t without some big revelations.

6 out of 10

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

The Syndicate (Timewaves #1) by Sophie Davis

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Sophie Davis Books and NetGalley.
The Syndicate (Timewaves, #1)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
In a future where time travel has been outlawed, a black market exists for anyone with the money, connections, and nerve to request items from days past. As a Runner for one of the underground syndicates that now controls the timewaves, Stassi 2446-89 has seen it all: the fall of Rome, the rise of Hitler, the end of democracy, the establishment of time tourism, and the devastating consequences of it. Her job is to seamlessly slip through the past, in search of items of value to the syndicate's clientele.

Stassi's next assignment takes her to Paris in the 1920’s, in search of a lost manuscript by one of the twentieth century’s greatest writers. She and her partner, Gaige, are swept up in the City of Light during the height of fashion and culture—as alluring a locale as they’ve ever visited. But a seedier side of life lurks beneath the glamorous fa├žade, and the pair quickly learns this run is more dangerous than any of their previous missions.

Because history isn’t playing out as it should be—a first for the syndicate. When the stakes are raised and it becomes a matter of life or death, Stassi and Gaige must ultimately decide how far they’re willing to go to ensure the future as they know it.

The Syndicate by Sophie Davis

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The Syndicate (Timewaves, #1) "Cyrus just said he has an assignment in Paris, year 1925. You want it right?”

This wasn’t a bad book, but it did struggle to hold my attention.

Stassi was an okay character, although at times her devotion to her job was really shaky. I couldn’t quite understand her wanting to sit through 2 hours of hairdressing rather than cut her hair a bit, and I also thought it was a bad idea to get involved with someone from a completely different century.

The storyline in this was okay, but it was let down by the slow pace. The book just seemed really long, and the pace really dragged for me. I got that the main idea was to find a manuscript for a book which had been lost, and I also got that Stassi was trying to work out who had purchased the locket that she had been given by her mother, with the hope of discovering her birth parents, but the story just seemed to take forever to get anywhere, and I lost interest.

The ending to this was okay, and I wasn’t expecting what we learned right at the end of the book.

6 out of 10

Tuesday, 19 April 2016

Mr. Fahrenheit by T. Michael Martin

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.
Mr. Fahrenheit
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Stephen King meets Super 8 (with some Friday Night Lights thrown in!) in this coming-of-age novel about a group of teens who witness a flying saucer approaching earth, from the author of The End Games.

Benji’s lived his whole life in the same sleepy midwestern town—the same town his father grew up in, and his grandfather. But he wants nothing more than to put his past in the rearview mirror as soon as he graduates high school. Benji yearns for a Moment—the Moment that will redeem and transform his ordinary life. The Moment that will propel him into a new, star-bright future.

Then one night, the Moment happens:

Benji and his tight group of friends—CR, Ellie, and Zeeko—accidentally shoot down a flying saucer in the local quarry. At Benji’s urging, they decide to keep it a secret and solve its mysteries on their own. But as they face threats both earthly and alien and old tensions among the friends surface, Benji begins to question whether this Moment is the miracle he’s always dreamed of—or a curse that could destroy them all.

A heart-stopping adventure, a tender romance, a smart exploration of ideas of memory and time—and a fond homage to UFO movies—Mr. Fahrenheit is another stunner from T. Michael Martin.

Mr. Fahrenheit by T. Michael Martin

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Mr. FahrenheitThis book just wasn’t for me unfortunately. I lost interest pretty early on and just couldn’t get it back. The characters were immature, and I just couldn’t connect with them, and the book seemed to be more about football than aliens.

4.5 out of 10

Monday, 18 April 2016

Passenger (Passenger #1) by Alexandra Bracken

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Hachette Children's Group and NetGalley.
Passenger (Passenger, #1)
Blurb (from Goodreads):
In one devastating night, Etta Spencer loses everything she knows and loves. Thrust into an unfamiliar world by a stranger with a dangerous agenda, Etta is certain of only one thing: she has travelled not just miles but years from home.

Nicholas Carter is content with his life at sea, free from the Ironwoods - a powerful family in the Colonies - and the servitude he's known at their hands. But with the arrival of an unusual passenger on his ship comes the insistent pull of the past that he can't escape and the family that won't let him go. Now the Ironwoods are searching for a stolen object of untold value, one they believe only Etta, his passenger, can find.

Together, Etta and Nicholas embark on a perilous journey across centuries and continents, piecing together clues left behind by the traveller who will do anything to keep the object out of the Ironwoods' grasp. But as they get closer to their target, treacherous forces threaten to separate Etta not only from Nicholas but from her path home forever.

Passenger by Alexandra Bracken

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Passenger (Passenger, #1) “I want you to know, I have never stolen anything in my life.”

This was a YA time travel story about a girl dragged through time against her will.

Etta was a strong girl and she did her best to stand up to those who threatened her. She used her brain to work things out, and didn’t give up when things got hard.

The storyline in this was about Etta being dragged through time against her will and then threatened into finding something that someone claimed her mother had stolen. The pace in this was super-slow though, and the book really dragged for me.
We did get a bit of romance, but it was a bit forbidden with the love interest being from a different century!

The ending to this was a giant cliff-hanger, which after such a long book was a bit frustrating.

6 out of 10

Sunday, 17 April 2016

My Kind of Crazy by Robin Reul

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to SOURCEBOOKS Fire and NetGalley.
My Kind of Crazy
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Despite the best of intentions, seventeen-year old, wisecracking Hank Kirby can’t quite seem to catch a break. It’s not that he means to screw things up all the time, it just happens. A lot. Case in point: his attempt to ask out the girl he likes literally goes up in flames when he spells “Prom” in sparklers on her lawn…and nearly burns down her house.

As if that wasn’t bad enough, Peyton Breedlove, a brooding loner and budding pyromaniac, witnesses the whole thing. Much to Hank’s dismay, Peyton takes an interest in him—and his “work.” The two are thrust into an unusual friendship, but their boundaries are tested when Hank learns that Peyton is hiding some dark secrets, secrets that may change everything he thought he knew about Peyton.

My Kind of Crazy by Robin Reul

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

My Kind of Crazy “I’d read online that how you ask a girl to prom can completely make or break a guy’s chances. I wanted to do something special that Amanda would never forget. Apparently it worked, just not the way I intended.”

This was a YA contemporary story about a boy who accidentally set fire to a tree whilst trying to ask a girl to prom.

The characters in this were alright, but I didn’t really love any of them. Hank didn’t seem to think much about his future other than working at a supermarket, and Peyton came across as a little odd at times. I also wasn’t sure how believable a lot of her stories were.

The storyline in this was about Hank accidentally setting fire to a tree whilst trying to ask a girl called Amanda to prom, and instead meeting Peyton and falling for her a little bit. We also had another guy called Nick, who was also interested in Peyton, and a storyline involving Hank’s father and his drinking problem.

The ending to this was fairly happy, although the future was still a bit undecided.

6 out of 10

Saturday, 16 April 2016

Dreaming of Antigone by Robin Bridges

Sponsored post: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Kensington Books and NetGalley.
Dreaming of Antigone
Blurb (from Goodreads):
Every star has its own path…

“I can’t ever be the blazing star that Iris was. I’m still just a cold, dark satellite orbiting a star that went super nova.”

Andria’s twin sister, Iris, had adoring friends, a cool boyfriend, a wicked car, and a shelf full of soccer trophies. She had everything, in fact—including a drug problem. Six months after Iris’s death, Andria is trying to keep her grades, her friends, and her family from falling apart. But stargazing and books aren’t enough to ward off her guilt that she—the freak with the scary illness and all-black wardrobe—is still here when Iris isn’t. And then there’s Alex Hammond. The boy Andria blames for Iris’s death. The boy she’s unwittingly started swapping lines of poetry and secrets with, even as she tries to keep hating him.

Heartwrenching, smart, and bold, Dreaming of Antigone is a story about the jagged pieces that lie beneath the surface of the most seemingly perfect life…and how they can fit together to make something wholly unexpected.

Dreaming of Antigone by Robin Bridges

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Dreaming of Antigone “The last time I saw Alex Hammond, he was strung out of heroin, just as high as my sister. That was the night Iris died.”

This was a YA contemporary story about a girl whose twin sister had died following a heroin overdose.

I thought that Andria was actually doing pretty well considering that her twin sister had died only 6 months previously. She seemed to be coping quite well, and even seemed to be able to hang out with her sister’s boyfriend, who she thought had gotten her sister hooked on the heroin to begin with.

The storyline in this was about Andria’s life following her sister’s death, and we also got storylines concerning hard hitting topics such as sexual abuse, drug abuse, suicide, and child abuse.

There was some romance in this, but it didn’t sit well with me. It just seemed odd that Andria would think it okay and appropriate to date her dead sister’s boyfriend, especially considering that he was the one who had gotten Iris involved with drugs in the first place.

The ending to this was okay, and we did get quite a few twists and revelations on the way there. The romance just didn’t quite do it for me though.

6.25 out of 10