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Monthly Archives: January 2015

The One by Kiera Cass

The One by Kiera Cass

The One

Kiera Cass

The One Kiera Cass COver

5 Star Review

This book is just wow! Interrupting your reading of this book by ‘living your life’ is not an option. It’s one of those books that you clear your schedule, curl up and read it until you finish it. You’ll thank me for the warning once you’ve finished it.

PositivesThankfully this book was as fantastic as the first book if not better. From the action (which I felt the first two books were lacking a bit in that area) to the emotional turmoil and of course the love, this book was a perfect ending to the story. I enjoyed the action scenes and was on the edge of my seat so to speak most of the way through. The change of scenery for a large part of it was good to shake things up. There was a lot of sadness in this book and as with most endings there were deaths but the ending made it all worth the sadness. There were a lot of great unexpected twists and turns added in. This book brought out the best in all of the characters.

NegativesThroughout the series Americas brother Kota was briefly mentioned but unfortunately he didn’t seem well developed and his part in the story was flimsy. America’s indecisiveness and hesitation was irritating but not as bad as the second book. I was forced to stop reading about 20 pages from the end (silly life getting in the way of reading) and I was very annoyed. I couldn’t believe that Kiera Cass had written it like that. How could she? I was ready to throw my poor ipad in frustration and wanted to refuse to finish it but it ate away at me. I needed to know what those last 20 pages said. As soon as I could, I finished the book. I must’ve stopped reading at the worst possible time. Literally the next page it started to get better again and went on to end fantastically.

OverallI just loved this book. The annoying parts were few and far between. The ending is wow. I won’t give anything away but this is one series that everyone should read. 5 out of 5 Stars!

BLURBThe time has come for one winner to be crowned.

When she was chosen to compete in the Selection, America never dreamed she would find herself anywhere close to the crown—or to Prince Maxon’s heart. But as the end of the competition approaches, and the threats outside the palace walls grow more vicious, America realizes just how much she stands to lose—and how hard she’ll have to fight for the future she wants. 

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Posted by on January 30, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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The Elite by Kiera Cass 4 Star Review

The Elite by Kiera Cass 4 Star Review

The Elite

Kiera Cass

4 Star Review

This book is a bit hard to review because as soon as I finished it (at 1am) I started the third book (The One). I needed to know how it all ended! It wasn’t as great as the first book but definitely worth reading.

 The_Elite_Cover

PositivesThis book wasn’t anywhere near up to the high standard of the first book. Of course there were some great parts but there were also some horrible parts; but on to the positives. Kiera Cass’s writing style is always a pleasure to read and she is very gifted. America is a great character although her motives and actions were questionable at times. How can you not love Maxon – most of the time and Aspen was just as wonderful. Marlee was a beautiful character but her part in this book didn’t really work well (for me anyway) and I thought her storyline should’ve been changed. It doesn’t change how much I loved Marlee though.

NegativesI loved this book but it annoyed me in many parts. It had the feel to it that it was the bridge between the first and third book. Necessary but not nearly as enjoyable. America acted very stupidly in some parts and it was pretty darn irritating. There is no way that someone could act like that in a palace and get away with it. The way the main characters acted in some spots was downright stupid and didn’t seem to make much sense in relation to their personality.

OverallI did enjoy this book for the most part and it’s a must read in order to finish the series (which you so have to!) but it was lacking and very annoying in some spots. Those parts almost made me give this book a 3.5 star rating but when there were good scenes – they were fantastic. I’m very glad I finished this book and had the third (The One) ready to start straight away.

BLURBThe Selection began with thirty-five girls.

Now with the group narrowed down to the six Elite, the competition to win Prince Maxon’s heart is fiercer than ever—and America is still struggling to decide where her heart truly lies. Is it with Maxon, who could make her life a fairy tale? Or with her first love, Aspen?

America is desperate for more time. But the rest of the Elite know exactly what they want—and America’s chance to choose is about to slip away.

 
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Posted by on January 28, 2015 in Book Review

 

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To Grow Something From Nothing

To Grow Something From Nothing

growing strawberries

Recently I’ve started growing (or at least trying to grow) my own plants. I have always been a horrible gardener and giving me a plant meant giving that plant a death sentence. BUT I guess with practice and some research I have slowly become better at it. My growing capabilities are still very limited and the plants I can grow must be hardy but I’m proud to announce that I have my own little garden now.

Recently whilst deciding what I should plant next I realised something that is really a fantastic metaphor for many things in life. As the title implies – To grow something out of nothing. Buying a well-established strong plant can make the success rate of that plant becoming full-grown is much higher which is the goal right? Well it’s not exactly like that for me. To buy seeds, plant them, care for them and watch them grow from basically nothing into a strong plant is a wonderful achievement for me. I stare proudly at my strawberry plant believing that it must be much stronger than if I had bought an established plant instead of seeds. *I’m most proud of my strawberries but don’t tell the other plants*

I believe that growing something from nothing is a million times better in so many ways than buying your way through the tough times to ensure your success rate is almost guaranteed. You also get the satisfaction of knowing it is because of your dedication that you have your own beautiful strawberries to eat.

I’m glad I’ve started out from a ‘seed’ and eventually I hope to make my way to become a beautiful, strong plant just like those in my garden.

Happy Gardening my friends xo

Seed plants Growinf

**Please note these are not photos of my plants as mine are nowhere near as spectacular but who doesn’t like a pretty photo of strawberries.**

 
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Posted by on January 27, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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The Selection – Kiera Cass 5 Star Review

The Selection – Kiera Cass 5 Star Review

5 Star Review

 The Selection Kiera Cass

I picked up this book because of course the cover was gorgeous, it rated high on Goodreads and because the concept seemed different. I’m very, VERY glad I did.

Positives I realised as soon as I finished the book that a lot of the reason why I loved this book was because of Kiera Cass’s writing style. It was beautiful to read. No awkward sentences, no staggered paragraphs, it just flowed along majestically. Kiera Cass is obviously a very talented writer. Apart from the writing style, the storyline was fresh and new. Oh how I loved America. She’s a great character that has a quirky personality yet strong in many ways. Each scene was written to the point where you were completely engulfed in their world, (yes I did smile like an idiot and laugh out loud at some things). Both Aspen and Maxon were well developed characters that had strong motives and were responsible young men. Their actions were logical and suited their personalities perfectly. I really enjoyed the strong characters that stayed true to their natures.

Negatives There were hardly any negatives in this book. The one major thing for me was that I felt that the climax lacked a little. I was reading it and looking at the page numbers wondering when I’d get into the real action but it didn’t really evolve into anything memorable. Nevertheless the storyline was still enthralling and exciting. The only other thing was the lack of description for the appearance of the character’s sometimes. When America was looking into Maxon’s eyes I wanted to image that but I didn’t remember reading what colour his eyes were.

Overall­For those who love a good love story (or love triangle) this is a must read. It’s different, it’s enthralling, it’s beautifully written, it’s captivating and it should be on the top of your book list. Thankfully the next two books in the series have been released so I can move straight on to number 2 – The Elite. Really looking forward to delving into that book and I have high expectations for it.

BLURB

For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape the life laid out for them since birth. To be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in a palace and compete for the heart of gorgeous Prince Maxon.

But for America Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her. Leaving her home to enter a fierce competition for a crown she doesn’t want. Living in a palace that is constantly threatened by violent rebel attacks.

Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she starts to question all the plans she’s made for herself–and realizes that the life she’s always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.

Happy Reading Everyone xo

 
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Posted by on January 23, 2015 in Book Review

 

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Shadows (The Rephaim) by Paula Weston 4 Star Review

Shadows (The Rephaim) by Paula Weston 4 Star Review

Over the Christmas/New Year break I read Shadows by Paula Weston. Once I read the first book, I was hooked and ended up devouring all three within a few days. I’m very excited about the release of the fourth and final book Burn. Here’s my review on Shadows –

Shadows – The Rephaim

Paula Weston

4 Star Review

shadows-approved

PositivesFirst off the cover was different and I really liked it. It gave you an idea of what the book was about and wasn’t the conventional ‘girl in gorgeous dress’ design. I loved that this book is set in such a beautiful real location and the description of the landscape was fantastic but I may be a bit biased considering it’s almost local to me. I enjoyed Paula Weston’s writing style and the characters were fairly well developed. The storyline was fast paced and there were quite a few unexpected twists in it. Paula has obviously put a lot of research into this book and I loved that her concepts were based from real writings and teachings, etc.

Gaby was an interesting protagonist who was refreshingly down-to-earth and relatable. Her reactions to the situations she was thrown into were smart and understandable. She is a well-developed character with a unique story.

Rafa was a very sexy love interest and although it was predictable from the start that the reader would learn to love him, I enjoyed going through the journey. The cliff-hanger at the very end was exciting and I found myself staring in to space contemplating different scenarios that might happen to Gaby and Rafa in the second book, even long after finishing the first.

NegativesI couldn’t find many negatives about this book. There was a few small inconsistencies and even one part seemed like it was missing at least a whole paragraph although it didn’t affect the overall storyline at all. I found with some of the characters – for example Daniel – he wasn’t as developed as I would’ve liked. The ending was a bit complicated and left the reader with some confusion about concepts that were only added at the end. There wasn’t enough time to explain the new revelations properly but I’m sure it will all make sense in the second book.

Overall This book rates as a 4 – 4.5 star book. It did have some negatives but overall I really enjoyed it. For me to thoroughly enjoy a book I need to feel that the storyline is based on reality, giving the reader the sense that it might just be possible. This book was just that – real yet imaginative. Shadows is Paula Weston’s first book which means she will only get better. I’m very excited to read Haze!


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(Alternative Cover)

It’s almost a year since Gaby Winters was in the car crash that killed her twin brother, Jude. Her body has healed in the sunshine of Pandanus Beach, but her grief is raw and constant. It doesn’t help that every night in her dreams she kills demons and other hell-spawn.

And then Rafa comes to town. Not only does he look exactly like the guy who’s been appearing in Gaby’s dreams—he claims a history with her brother that makes no sense. Gaby is forced to accept that what she thought she knew about herself and her life is only a shadow of the truth—and that the truth is more likely to be found in the shadows of her nightmares.

Who is Rafa? Who are the Rephaim? And most importantly, who can she trust?

Fast-paced and gripping, Shadows, the first book in the Rephaim series.

 
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Posted by on January 19, 2015 in Book Review

 

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Happy New Year!

Book-cool-wallpaper-New-Year-2015-1024x619

Happy New Year Everyone! I hope you’re still on the path to your new year resolutions! I’m wavering a little but basically on track. So far 2015 has been a great and exciting new year.

Goals for my blog this year –

*More book reviews

*Blogs on writing

*Blogs on editing

*Random pieces of writing (from yours truly)

*Maybe even a few exerts from my manuscripts.

My writing related goals for this year –

*Meet new friends

*Reach more people with my blog

*Start the ball rolling on my publishing journey with my manuscripts

*Read and Review a lot more books than I did last year

*Blog way more often (starting now)

*Get more involved in the world of all things writing

*Finish two of the manuscripts I started last year

*Try and keep a journal/diary.

I’ve got a lot of goals but at least I have some great things to work towards.

What are everyone else’s goals for 2015?

2015 happy

 
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Posted by on January 15, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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