Tuesday, 27 December 2016

Top Ten Best Books Of 2016


Why, hello there! It's been a while, hasn't it?

While I've been trudging along with deadlines, catching up on reading and just overall dealing with life, the blog here (and especially Top Ten Tuesday) ended up being a bit neglected. I've been doing some blogging 'soul searching' lately and 2017 will bring along some changes, which hopefully will result in more ramblings by yours truly around these parts.

So, I thought that there would be no better topic for me to return to Top Ten than choosing my favorite books of the year. 2016 might have been an absolute pain in the ass, but it did bring along quite a few amazing books, so not everything is lost!

As always, I'm not 100% sure these are in order of preference, because every time I try to organize these lists I feel like the few remaining brain cells I still have at full capacity throw their little hands up in the air and chastise me for my torture of them. For the sake of my collapsing brain then, here are, probably in no order, my favorite reads of 2016!

1. 'A Court of Mist and Fury', by Sarah J. Maas

[Review]    {Goodreads}

As much as I've become 'unenchanted' with the 'Throne of Glass' series (I just could not ignore the level of problematic relationships and representation going on), ACOTAR still manages to hook me, and this second installment had me entranced from the first page to the last. While I understand some people also find it problematic, in my opinion it does present itself as a matter of point of view, and I was satisfied with the explanation provided.

Let's see if by the end of the trilogy that will still be the case!

Thursday, 15 December 2016

'Star Wars: Catalyst', by James Luceno

Title: Star Wars: Catalyst
Author(s): James Luceno
Release Date: 17th November 2016
Publisher: Century
Genre: Science Fiction
Source: Publisher

Synopsis:
War is tearing the galaxy apart. For years the Republic and the Separatists have battled across the stars, each building more and more deadly technology in an attempt to win the war. As a member of Chancellor Palpatine’s top secret Death Star project, Orson Krennic is determined to develop a superweapon before their enemies can. And an old friend of Krennic’s, the brilliant scientist Galen Erso, could be the key.

Galen’s energy-focused research has captured the attention of both Krennic and his foes, making the scientist a crucial pawn in the galactic conflict. But after Krennic rescues Galen, his wife, Lyra, and their young daughter, Jyn, from Separatist kidnappers, the Erso family is deeply in Krennic’s debt. Krennic then offers Galen an extraordinary opportunity: to continue his scientific studies with every resource put utterly at his disposal. While Galen and Lyra believe that his energy research will be used purely in altruistic ways, Krennic has other plans that will finally make the Death Star a reality. Trapped in their benefactor’s tightening grasp, the Ersos must untangle Krennic’s web of deception to save themselves and the galaxy itself.
 

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Thursday, 27 October 2016

'Ready Player One', by Ernest Cline

Title: Ready Player One
Author(s): Ernest Cline
Release Date: 5th April 2012
Publisher: Arrow Books
Genre: YA, Science Fiction, Dystopia
Source: Audible (Audiobook)

Synopsis:
It's the year 2044, and the real world is an ugly place.

Like most of humanity, Wade Watts escapes his grim surroundings by spending his waking hours jacked into the OASIS, a sprawling virtual utopia that lets you be anything you want to be, a place where you can live and play and fall in love on any of ten thousand planets.

And like most of humanity, Wade dreams of being the one to discover the ultimate lottery ticket that lies concealed within this virtual world. For somewhere inside this giant networked playground, OASIS creator James Halliday has hidden a series of fiendish puzzles that will yield massive fortune — and remarkable power — to whoever can unlock them.

For years, millions have struggled fruitlessly to attain this prize, knowing only that Halliday's riddles are based in the pop culture he loved — that of the late twentieth century. And for years, millions have found in this quest another means of escape, retreating into happy, obsessive study of Halliday's icons. Like many of his contemporaries, Wade is as comfortable debating the finer points of John Hughes's oeuvre, playing Pac-Man, or reciting Devo lyrics as he is scrounging power to run his OASIS rig.

And then Wade stumbles upon the first puzzle.

Suddenly the whole world is watching, and thousands of competitors join the hunt — among them certain powerful players who are willing to commit very real murder to beat Wade to this prize. Now the only way for Wade to survive and preserve everything he knows is to win. But to do so, he may have to leave behind his oh-so-perfect virtual existence and face up to life — and love — in the real world he's always been so desperate to escape.

A world at stake.
A quest for the ultimate prize.
Are you ready?

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Friday, 21 October 2016

'As I Descended', by Robin Talley

Title: As I Descended
Author(s): Robin Talley
Release Date: 6th September 2016
Publisher: Mira INK
Genre: YA, Supernatural
Source: Publisher

Synopsis:
Maria Lyon and Lily Boiten are their school’s ultimate power couple—even if no one knows it but them.

Only one thing stands between them and their perfect future: campus superstar Delilah Dufrey.

Golden child Delilah is a legend at the exclusive Acheron Academy, and the presumptive winner of the distinguished Cawdor Kingsley Prize. She runs the school, and if she chose, she could blow up Maria and Lily’s whole world with a pointed look, or a carefully placed word.

But what Delilah doesn’t know is that Lily and Maria are willing to do anything—absolutely anything—to make their dreams come true. And the first step is unseating Delilah for the Kingsley Prize. The full scholarship, awarded to Maria, will lock in her attendance at Stanford―and four more years in a shared dorm room with Lily.

Maria and Lily will stop at nothing to ensure their victory—including harnessing the dark power long rumored to be present on the former plantation that houses their school.

But when feuds turn to fatalities, and madness begins to blur the distinction between what’s real and what is imagined, the girls must decide where they draw the line.

From acclaimed author Robin Talley comes a Shakespeare-inspired story of revenge and redemption, where fair is foul, and foul is fair.
 

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Sunday, 16 October 2016

'Holding Up The Universe' by Jennifer Niven

Title: Holding Up The Universe
Author(s): Jennifer Niven
Release Date: 6th October 2016
Publisher: Penguin
Genre: YA, Contemporary
Source: Publisher (ARC)

Synopsis:
Everyone thinks they know Libby Strout, the girl once dubbed 'America's Fattest Teen'. But no one's taken the time to look past her weight to get to see who she really is. Since her mum's death, she's been picking up the pieces in the privacy of her home, dealing with her heartbroken father and her own grief. Now, Libby's ready: for high school, for new friends, for love, and for EVERY POSSIBILITY LIFE HAS TO OFFER. I know the part I want to play here at MVB High. I want to be the girl who can do anything.

Everyone thinks they know Jack Masselin too. Yes, he's got swagger, but he's also mastered the art of fitting in. What no one knows is that Jack has a secret: he can't recognize faces. Even his own brothers are strangers to him. He's the guy who can re-engineer and rebuild anything, but he can't understand what's going on with the inner workings of his own brain. So he tells himself to play it cool: Be charming. Be hilarious. Don't get too close to anyone.

Until he meets Libby. When the two get tangled up in a cruel high school game which lands them in group counseling, Libby and Jack are both angry, and then surprised. Because the more time they spend together, the less alone they feel. Because sometimes when you meet someone, it changes the world - theirs and yours.


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Thursday, 13 October 2016

'Three Dark Crowns', by Kendare Blake

Title: Three Dark Crowns (Three Dark Crowns #1)
Author(s): Kendare Blake
Release Date: 22nd September 2016
Publisher: Macmillan
Genre: YA, Fantasy
Source: Publisher (ARC)

Synopsis:
Three sisters. One crown. A fight to the death.

In every generation on the island of Fennbirn, a set of triplets is born: three queens, all equal heirs to the crown and each possessor of a coveted magic. Mirabella is a fierce elemental, able to spark hungry flames or vicious storms at the snap of her fingers. Katharine is a poisoner, one who can ingest the deadliest poisons without so much as a stomachache. Arsinoe, a naturalist, is said to have the ability to bloom the reddest rose and control the fiercest of lions.

But becoming the Queen Crowned isn't solely a matter of royal birth. Each sister has to fight for it. And it's not just a game of win or lose . . . it's life or death. The night the sisters turn sixteen, the battle begins.

The last queen standing gets the crown.

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Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Books I Read (and Loved) Because of Booktube


This week's Top Ten Tuesday is all about books we have read because of other people's recommendations, and I decided to do mine about booktube. Long before I joined the community myself, I often saw my TBR growing with each video I watched. I found on booktube a way to be updated about new releases on my favourite genres (and, sometimes, be intrigued by some that I thought I wouldn't!) and start eagerly awaiting novels way before their release.

In some cases I ended up reading books I otherwise wouldn't, and was often pleasantly surprised. So, without further ado, here is a list of some of the books I read because of the recommendations of booktubers, in the hope I can pass these along to other eager readers!

1. 'Afterworlds', by Scott Westerfeld

{Goodreads}

I don't remember who first introduced this book to me, but if I did I would be swarming their comment section with 'thank you's.

Having previously read some of the books from the 'Uglies' series, I wasn't too keen on giving Scott Westerfeld another try, but after seeing what this book was about I had to put that aside and read it. A book about a NaNoWriMo participant? I definitely needed in on that.

Needless to say, I immediately fell in love with it, binge read it, it is now one of my favourite books ever, and I always try to find the chance to recommend it to other people to spread the love.

Go read it. Now.

Tuesday, 4 October 2016

My Favourite Book Villains


This week's Top Ten Tuesday is SO me.

If I have a weak spot for any type of character in books, it most certainly is the villain. A book with a bad villain can have everything else going for it but it will still fall flat on its face to me. Give me cringy, manic, calculatic villains any day of the week!

I didn't put this top in any sort of order, otherwise I would go insane trying to decide on my favourites. Also, this feels like a disclaimer I should be doing in the event of any of these magically coming to live and deciding to come after me...


1. Kylo Ren, 'Star Wars: The Force Awakens'

{Goodreads}      [Review]

Okay, I lied.

This is definitely my favourite.

Also, this counts because there is a book of it! (muahahah)

In all honesty, anyone that knows me in real life knows how obsessed I am with Kylo Ren. He's probably the best Star Wars villain ever (Darth Vader is on a whole other level of iconic), and there are so many layers to him that I rejoice with glee every time I see yet another theory related to him.

If he doesn't have some sort of redemption by the end of this trilogy, I will force choke a bitch.

Monday, 3 October 2016

September Wrap Up


September was, once again, a month with little to no reading... *sigh* I really need to step up my game, otherwise my TBR will never end!

I had one book that I gave up on, and then managed to finish two others. Crossing my fingers that October will turn out better!

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Books On My Fall TBR


Man, it's been a very, very long time!

After several months of absence from the Top Ten Tuesday feature here on the blog, I am finally (and hopefully) returned and staying for the long haul. My first topic back is what books I am planning to read this Fall, and, to be honest, I never really plan ahead on my TBRs. More often than not I do not stick to them, so why bother right?

However, Fall has always had a certain 'vibe' to me that makes me want to read specific books, so let's get to this!

1. 'Gemina', by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff


This is, plain and simple, my most anticipated read of the YEAR.

After falling in love with 'Illuminae' last year (you can check out my review here, or here!), I absolutely cannot wait to see what the brilliance of Amie and Jay will bring us next.

I need to reserve myself a day once I get my hands on this, because I'm going nowhere until I finish it!

Tuesday, 6 September 2016

July & August Wrap Up


July was such a slow reading month for me (with only two finished books) that, once again, here is a joint wrap up. August definitely picked up, and even with me having to get a head start on my university reads, I got to pick up some fantastic books!

(I forgot to include my July reads in the picture ups)

Wednesday, 31 August 2016

'Nevernight', by Jay Kristoff

Title: Nevernight (The Nevernight Chronicle #1)
Author(s): Jay Kristoff
Release Date: 11th August 2016
Publisher: Harper Voyager
Genre: YA, Epic Fantasy
Source: Publisher (ARC)

Synopsis:
Destined to destroy empires, Mia Covere is only ten years old when she is given her first lesson in death.

Six years later, the child raised in shadows takes her first steps towards keeping the promise she made on the day that she lost everything.

But the chance to strike against such powerful enemies will be fleeting, so if she is to have her revenge, Mia must become a weapon without equal. She must prove herself against the deadliest of friends and enemies, and survive the tutelage of murderers, liars and demons at the heart of a murder cult.

The Red Church is no Hogwarts, but Mia is no ordinary student.

The shadows love her. And they drink her fear.

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Monday, 29 August 2016

'Tell Us Something True', by Dana Reinhardt

Title:Tell Us Something True
Author(s): Dana Reinhardt
Release Date: 20th July 2016
Publisher: Rock The Boat
Genre: YA, Contemporary
Source: Publisher (ARC)

Synopsis:
For fans of Sarah Dessen, Jennifer Smith, E.L. Lockhart, and John Green, this delightful, often comic coming-of-age novel stars the lovable, brokenhearted River, the streets of LA, and an irresistible cast of characters.

Seventeen-year-old River doesn’t know what to do with himself when Penny, the girl he adores, breaks up with him. He lives in LA, where nobody walks anywhere, and Penny was his ride; he never bothered getting a license. He’s stuck. He’s desperate. Okay . . . he’s got to learn to drive.

But first, he does the unthinkable—he starts walking. He stumbles upon a support group for teens with various addictions. He fakes his way into the meetings, and begins to connect with the other kids, especially an amazing girl. River wants to tell the truth, but he can’t stop lying, and his tangle of deception may unravel before he learns how to handle the most potent drug of all: true love.

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Wednesday, 17 August 2016

'Burning Midnight', by Will McIntosh

Title: Burning Midnight
Author(s): Will McIntosh
Release Date: 11th February 2016
Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books
Genre: YA, Science Fiction
Source: Giveaway (ARC)

Synopsis:
How much would you pay for superpowers? Fast-paced action adventure with a world-changing twist...

For fans of The Maze Runner and The 5th Wave, this debut YA novel from Hugo Award-winner Will McIntosh pits four teens against an evil billionaire in the race of a lifetime.

Sully is a sphere dealer at a flea market. It doesn't pay much - Alex Holliday's stores have muscled out most of the independent sellers - but it helps him and his mum make the rent. No one knows where the brilliant-coloured spheres came from. One day they were just there, hidden all over the earth like huge gemstones. Burn a pair and they make you a little better: an inch taller, skilled at maths, better-looking. The rarer the sphere, the greater the improvement - and the more expensive the sphere.

When Sully meets Hunter, a girl with a natural talent for finding spheres, the two start searching together. What they find will change more than just their lives... Because the entire world fights over spheres, but no one knows why they're here or what their powers are... until now.

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Saturday, 13 August 2016

'Children of Icarus', by Caighlan Smith

Title: Children of Icarus (Children of Icarus #1)
Author(s): Caighlan Smith
Release Date: 19th July 2016
Publisher: Curious Fox
Genre: YA, Dystopia
Source: Publisher (ARC)

Synopsis:
It's Clara who is desperate to enter the labyrinth and it's Clara who is bright, strong and fearless enough to take on any challenge. It's no surprise when she is chosen. But so is the girl who has always lived in her shadow. Together they enter. Within minutes they are torn apart for ever. Now the girl who has never left the city walls must fight to survive in a living nightmare, where one false turn with who to trust means a certain dead end.

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Friday, 22 July 2016

Book Blitz: 'November Rain' by Shannon A. Thompson

What better way to escape from the unbearable heat than to discover a new world, right? This month's book blitz here on the blog is to promote 'Bad Bloods' by Shannon A. Thompson. Other than for the obviously gorgeous looking cover, the synopsis and the excerpt included at the end of the post seem right up my alley, and I will be sure to try and squeeze this in my gigantic TBR at some point.

Want to see what it's all about?

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

'The Raven Boys', by Maggie Stiefvater

Title: The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle #1)
Author(s): Maggie Stiefvater
Release Date: 19th September 2012
Publisher: Scholastic
Genre: YA
Source: Bought

Synopsis:
Even if Blue hadn't been told her true love would die if she kissed him, she would stay away from boys. Especially the ones from the local private school. Known as Raven Boys, they only mean trouble.

But this is the year that everything will change for Blue.

This is the year that she will be drawn into the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys. And the year Blue will discover that magic does exist.

This is the year she will fall in love.

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Saturday, 2 July 2016

Feminist Icon: Hayley Atwell - 'And I Darken' Blog Tour!


I am incredibly excited to be a part of this blog tour, for various reasons. First, it's for a book I have already read, raved about, and will for sure be on my top reads of 2016. Second, it is an immensely empowering opportunity to spread some 'girl power' love and talk about our favorite feminists. Third, it gives me a chance to rave about the book some more.

Had I already mentioned that?

The book I am talking about is the amazing, the wonderful, 'And I Darken' by Kiersten White. It is the first installment in the Conquerors Saga, and it brings us the story of Lada Dracul, one of the strongest, bravest, most layered characters I have had the pleasure to read about in recent years.

If you would like to read more about it click here, and you can also check out my spoiler free review right here. Go on. I'll wait here. Are you back yet? Good, then go and click that pre-order button at your retailer of choice right now, as this is about to hit shelves on  July 7th!

As Lada is a fantastic example of a feminist character, throughout this blog tour you will have a chance to read about some other great (non-fictional) women that are amazing examples to follow and just overall feminist icons.

When I think of feminists, my mind goes immediately to the kindest, most genuine person I have had the incredible luck of briefly meeting: Hayley Atwell. She is most known for her role as Peggy Carter in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and her character won such a loving place in people's hearts that a spin-off series, 'Agent Carter', ran for two seasons (to immense uproar at its cancellation).

While Peggy is an incredible feminist in herself, Hayley does not shy away from those shoes, and has long been very vocal about the portrayal of women in media and overall women's rights, and has dedicated herself to charity work. So, for my stop of the tour, I thought I'd share some feminist and inspirational quotes by Hayley, so you can see just how amazing she is!

Thursday, 30 June 2016

June Wrap Up!


June was a slower reading month for me, having picked up four books, but this time around I am not 'disappointed' that I didn't read more. It's normal for me to have intermittent reading months (reading a lot in one and then not so much in the next) so I wasn't expecting to read much throughout June. I did have some amazing, amazing reads!


Saturday, 25 June 2016

'And I Darken', by Kiersten White

Title: And I Darken (The Conquerors Saga #1)
Author(s): Kiersten White
Release Date: 7th July 2016
Publisher: Penguin Random House
Genre: YA, Historical
Source: Publisher (ARC)

Synopsis:
No one expects a princess to be brutal. And Lada Dragwyla likes it that way.

Ever since she and her brother were abandoned by their father to be raised in the Ottoman sultan’s courts, Lada has known that ruthlessness is the key to survival. For the lineage that makes her and her brother special also makes them targets.

Lada hones her skills as a warrior as she nurtures plans to wreak revenge on the empire that holds her captive. Then she and Radu meet the sultan’s son, Mehmed, and everything changes. Now Mehmed unwittingly stands between Lada and Radu as they transform from siblings to rivals, and the ties of love and loyalty that bind them together are stretched to breaking point.

The first of an epic new trilogy starring the ultimate anti-princess who does not have a gentle heart. Lada knows how to wield a sword, and she'll stop at nothing to keep herself and her brother alive.

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Wednesday, 22 June 2016

'Blame', by Simon Mayo

Title: Blame
Author(s): Simon Mayo
Release Date: 7th July 2016
Publisher: Penguin Random House
Genre: YA, Thriller
Source: Publisher (ARC)

Synopsis:
What happens when society wants you banged up in prison for a crime your parents committed?

That’s the situation in which Ant finds herself – together with her little brother Mattie and their foster-parents, she’s locked up in a new kind of family prison. None of the inmates are themselves criminals, but wider society wants them to do time for the unpunished ‘heritage’ crimes of their parents.

Tensions are bubbling inside the London prison network Ant and Mattie call home – and when things finally erupt, they realize they’ve got one chance to break out. Everyone wants to see them punished for the sins of their mum and dad, but it’s time for Ant to show the world that they’re not to blame.

A new nail-bitingly taught YA suspense thriller, from author of the bestselling ITCH series, Simon Mayo.

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Monday, 13 June 2016

'The Shadow Queen', by C.J. Redwine

Title: The Shadow Queen (Ravenspire #1)
Author(s): C.J. Redwine
Release Date: 3rd March 2016
Publisher: Scholastic
Genre: YA, Fantasy
Source: Publisher

Synopsis:
Lorelai Diederich, crown princess and fugitive at large, has one mission: kill the wicked queen who took both the Ravenspire throne and the life of her father. To do that, Lorelai needs to use the one weapon she and Queen Irina have in common—magic. She’ll have to be stronger, faster, and more powerful than Irina, the most dangerous sorceress Ravenspire has ever seen.

In the neighboring kingdom of Eldr, when Prince Kol’s father and older brother are killed by an invading army of magic-wielding ogres, the second-born prince is suddenly given the responsibility of saving his kingdom. To do that, Kol needs magic—and the only way to get it is to make a deal with the queen of Ravenspire, promise to become her personal huntsman…and bring her Lorelai’s heart.

But Lorelai is nothing like Kol expected—beautiful, fierce, and unstoppable—and despite dark magic, Lorelai is drawn in by the passionate and troubled king. Fighting to stay one step ahead of the dragon huntsman—who she likes far more than she should—Lorelai does everything in her power to ruin the wicked queen. But Irina isn’t going down without a fight, and her final move may cost the princess the one thing she still has left to lose.

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Sunday, 5 June 2016

April & May Wrap Up


For the first time here on the blog I am doing a two month wrap up in one post, simply because April was the worst reading month of the year for me, and I only finished two books. They were also ebooks, which would have made for a very plain, image free post. So I decided to leave it until this month, and May was definitely more reading productive than April, with a grand total of ten books!

As I am (finally) free of University until September, I decided to take some time to catch up on my out of control review book pile. I am one of those people that feels incredibly guilty if I receive a book from a publisher (even if I did not request it) and do not review it. So, while there are books I've owned for years that I really want to get to, for the next couple of months I'll be going through more recent releases.

Which I am also super excited to read, so in the end it's a win/win situation, really.

Here are my April and May reads!

Friday, 3 June 2016

Book Blitz: 'Terrapin' by A.C. Troyer


Let's start the month off here on the blog with some indie author love, shall we? Today's Book Blitz is for 'Terrapin', by A.C. Troyer, the first in the Nordic Airre series. The cover is absolutely gorgeous, and while the synopsis leaves a lot to the imagination, it's about a female pilot in a fantasy setting. How can one not think that is super cool? From the excerpt you will find further down this post I can predict a lot of banter between the characters and it seems straight up my alley. Don't forget to also enter the international giveaway right at the bottom!

Thanks to Xpresso Book Tours for hosting!

Tuesday, 31 May 2016

'Risuko: A Kunoichi Tale', by David Kudler

Title: Risuko: A Kunoichi Tale (Seasons of the Sword #1)
Author(s): David Kudler
Release Date: 15th June 2016
Publisher: Stillpoint Digital Press
Genre: YA, Historical
Source: NetGalley (ARC)

Synopsis:
My name is Kano Murasaki, but most people call me Risuko. Squirrel.

I am from Serenity Province, though I was not born there.

My nation has been at war for a hundred years, Serenity is under attack, my family is in disgrace, but some people think that I can bring victory. That I can be
a very special kind of woman.

All I want to do is climb.


Though Japan has been devastated by a century of civil war, Risuko just wants to climb trees. Growing up far from the battlefields and court intrigues, the fatherless girl finds herself pulled into a plot that may reunite Japan -- or may destroy it. She is torn from her home and what is left of her family, but finds new friends at a school that may not be what it seems.

Magical but historical, Risuko follows her along the first dangerous steps to discovering who she truly is.

Historical adventure fiction appropriate for young adult and middle-grade readers.

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Sunday, 29 May 2016

'Crush', by Eve Ainsworth

Title: Crush
Author(s): Eve Ainsworth
Release Date: 3rd March 2016
Publisher: Scholastic
Genre: YA, Contemporary
Source: Publisher

Synopsis:
Love hurts ... but should it hurt this much? Reeling from her mum's sudden departure, Anna finds the comfort she needs in her blossoming relationship with Will. He's handsome and loving, everything Anna has always dreamt of. He's also moody and unpredictable, pushing her away from her friends, her music. He wants her to be his and his alone. He wants her to be perfect. Anna's world is closing in. But threatening everything is a dark secret that not even Will can control... Eve Ainsworth's gripping second novel is a pitch-perfect exploration of love at its most powerful, addictive and destructive.

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Friday, 27 May 2016

'Rebel of the Sands', by Alwyn Hamilton

Title: Rebel of the Sands (Rebel of the Sands #1)
Author(s): Alwyn Hamilton
Release Date: 4th February 2016
Publisher: Faber & Faber
Genre: YA, Fantasy
Source: NetGalley

Synopsis:
"Tell me that and we'll go. Right now. Save ourselves and leave this place to burn. Tell me that's how you want your story to go and we'll write it straight across the sand."

Dustwalk is an unforgiving, dead-end town. It's not the place to be poor or orphaned or female. And yet Amani Al'Hiza must call it 'home'.

Amani wants to escape and see the world she's heard about in campfire stories.

Then a foreigner with no name turns up, and with him she has the chance to run.

But the desert plains are full of dangerous magic. The Sultan's army is on the rise and Amani is soon caught at the heart of a fearless rebellion...

An epic story of swirling desert sands, love, magic and revolution.

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Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Book Blitz: 'Shining Sea' by Mimi Cross


Today I'm bringing you one more book blitz to close off the month! I'm a sucker for fantasy, so this shining (no pun intended) cover immediately caught my eye. I'd be curious to see how music is included in the story, and while the synopsis almost suggests a love triangle, I try not to judge negatively from just the blurb; there's been plenty of times when they've been misleading. 'Shining Sea' by Mimi Cross is out today! Thank you once again to Xpresso Book Tours for hosting this Blitz!


Sunday, 22 May 2016

'Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between', by Jennifer E. Smith

Title: Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between
Author(s): Jennifer E. Smith
Release Date: 1st September 2015
Publisher: Headline
Genre: YA, Romance, Contemporary
Source: Publisher

Synopsis:
One night. A life-changing decision. And a list...

Of course Clare made a list. She creates lists for everything. That's just how she is.

But tonight is Clare and Aidan's last night before college and this list will decide their future, together or apart.

It takes them on a rollercoaster ride through their past - from the first hello in science class to the first conversation at a pizza joint, their first kiss at the beach and their first dance in a darkened gymnasium - all the way up to tonight.

A night of laughs, fresh hurts, last-minute kisses and an inevitable goodbye.

But will it be goodbye forever or goodbye for now?

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Friday, 20 May 2016

'Star Wars: Bloodline', by Claudia Gray

Title: Star Wars: Bloodline
Author(s): Claudia Gray
Release Date: 5th May 2016
Publisher: Century
Genre: Science Fiction
Source: Publisher

Synopsis:
When the Rebellion defeated the Empire in the skies above Endor, Leia Organa believed it was the beginning to a lasting peace. But after decades of vicious infighting and partisan gridlock in the New Republic Senate, that hope seems like a distant memory.

Now a respected senator, Leia must grapple with the dangers that threaten to cripple the fledgling democracy—from both within and without. Underworld kingpins, treacherous politicians, and Imperial loyalists are sowing chaos in the galaxy. Desperate to take action, senators are calling for the election of a First Senator. It is their hope that this influential post will bring strong leadership to a divided galaxy.

As the daughter of Darth Vader, Leia faces with distrust the prospect of any one person holding such a powerful position—even when supporters suggest Leia herself for the job. But a new enemy may make this path Leia’s only option. For at the edges of the galaxy, a mysterious threat is growing. . . .

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Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Book Blitz: 'The Dream Protocol: Descent' by Adara Flynn Quick


Today I'm introducing a new feature here on Accio Reviews! Since starting this venture into the book blogging world I have wanted to have a chance to somehow be supportive of indie/self published authors. With a never-ending TBR pile sometimes it becomes impossible to add even more books to the list, but I have managed to, here and there, be pleasantly surprised by an indie book.

To go along with that effort of reading more outside traditional publishing, I will be including Book Blitzes here on the blog around twice every month. I will choose books that are being released soon and seem so promising that I would like to pick up myself, and these posts will include blurbs, excerpts and more often than not, giveaways!

Today's post is about 'The Dream Protocol: Descent' by Adara Flynn Quick, a Dystopian YA where people are not free to have their own dreams. Thank you to Xpresso Book Tours for hosting!





Sunday, 15 May 2016

'Riverkeep', by Martin Stewart

Title: Riverkeep
Author(s): Martin Stewart
Release Date: 28th April 2016
Publisher: Penguin
Genre: YA, Fantasy
Source: Publisher (ARC)

Synopsis:
The DanĂ©k is a wild, treacherous river, and the Fobisher family has tended it for generations—clearing it of ice and weed, making sure boats can get through, and fishing corpses from its bleak depths. Wulliam’s father, the current Riverkeep, is proud of this work. Wull dreads it. And in one week, when he comes of age, he will have to take over.
Then the unthinkable happens. While recovering a drowned man, Wull’s father is pulled under—and when he emerges, he is no longer himself. A dark spirit possesses him, devouring him from the inside. In an instant, Wull is Riverkeep. And he must care for his father, too.
When he hears that a cure for his father lurks in the belly of a great sea-dwelling beast known as the mormorach, he embarks on an epic journey down the river that his family has so long protected—but never explored. Along the way, he faces death in any number of ways, meets people and creatures touched by magic and madness and alchemy, and finds courage he never knew he possessed.
Martin Stewart's debut novel is an astonishing blend of the literary, the comedic, and the emotionally resonant. In a sentence, it's The Wizard of Oz as told by Patrick Ness. It marks the beginning of a remarkable career.

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Friday, 13 May 2016

'Flamecaster', by Cinda Williams Chima

Title: Flamecaster (Shattered Realms #1)
Author(s): Cinda Williams Chima
Release Date: 19th April 2016
Publisher: Harper Collins
Genre: YA, Fantasy
Source: Publisher (ARC)

Synopsis:
Set in the world of the New York Times bestselling Seven Realms series, a generation later, this is a breathtaking story of dark magic, chilling threats, and two unforgettable characters walking a knife-sharp line between life and death. This dazzling beginning to a new series is indispensable for fans of Cinda Williams Chima and a perfect starting point for readers who are new to her work.

Adrian sul’Han, known as Ash, is a trained healer with a powerful gift of magic—and a thirst for revenge. Ash is forced into hiding after a series of murders throws the queendom into chaos. Now he’s closer than ever to killing the man responsible, the cruel king of Arden. With time running out, Ash faces an excruciating choice: Can he use his powers not to save a life but to take it?

Abandoned at birth, Jenna Bandelow was told that the magemark on the back of her neck would make her a target. But when the King’s Guard launches a relentless search for a girl with a mark like hers, Jenna assumes that it has more to do with her role as a saboteur than any birth-based curse. Though Jenna doesn’t know why she’s being hunted, she knows that she can’t get caught.

Eventually, Ash’s and Jenna’s paths will collide in Arden. Thrown together by chance and joined by their hatred of the ruthless king, they will come to rescue each other in ways they cannot yet imagine.

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Wednesday, 11 May 2016

'Paper Hearts, Volume 2: Some Publishing Advice', by Beth Revis

Title: Paper Hearts, Volume 2: Some Publishing Advice (Paper Hearts #2)
Author(s): Beth Revis
Release Date: 1st December 2015
Publisher: Scripturient Books
Genre: Writing Craft
Source: NetGalley

Synopsis:
Launch the right career for you.

There are more options than ever to get your book published. But what's the right path to a career as an author for you? Discover the different publishing paths, learn what's right for your story, and use specific tools and activities to present your work in the best possible way.

Practical Advice Meets Real Experience

With information that explores both traditional and self publication, Paper Hearts describes:

-How to Pick the Right Publishing Path for You
-Basic Professional Advice
-Practical Information on Agents
-How to Write a Query Letter
-Dealing with Traditional Publication
-Developing a Book for Self Publishing
-Budgeting and Investing Money in Your Career
-Steps to becoming a Career Author

...And much more!

BONUS! Includes an actual query letter that snagged an agent, plus guidelines and models to write a query or book description from an author who has successfully published in both methods.


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Sunday, 8 May 2016

'The Time Traveler's Wife', by Audrey Niffenegger


Title: The Time Traveler's Wife
Author(s): Audrey Niffenegger
Release Date: 2003
Publisher: Vintage
Genre: Romance
Source: Bought


 

Synopsis:
Clare, a beautiful art student, and Henry, an adventuresome librarian, have known each other since Clare was 6 and Henry was 36, married when Clare 23 and Henry 31. Impossible but true. Because Henry unintentionally jumps in time, pulled to moments of emotional gravity, past and future. His experiences can be harrowing or amusing.

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Wednesday, 4 May 2016

'Paper Hearts, Volume 3: Some Marketing Advice', by Beth Revis

Title: Paper Hearts, Volume 3: Some Marketing Advice (Paper Hearts #3)
Author(s): Beth Revis
Release Date: 31st December 2015
Publisher: Scripturient Books
Genre: Writing Craft
Source: Publisher

Synopsis:
Help readers discover your work.

Once your book is out there, you realize that the most difficult thing about publishing is actually getting read. For the novice author looking to find actionable methods of gaining exposure, this volume will provide a foundation for marketing that will help kickstart any writing career.

Practical Advice Meets Real Experience

After the book is published, your job as a writer isn’t done. Paper Hearts will help you:

-Find Balance between Art and Business
-Develop an Online Presence
-Examine and Exploit the Way People Buy Books
-Set Up Basic Tools for Communication
-Discuss Best Practices to Get Reviews
-Analyze What’s Worth Your Time & Money
-Develop Live and Online Book Tours & Events
-Host Live Events, Even if You’re an Introvert

…And much more!

BONUS! Includes a list of the most common social media outlets and the best practices for authors to use them and reach readers.

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