Book Review | Windfall by Jennifer E Smith

32048554Alice doesn’t believe in luck – at least, not the good kind. But she does believe that she is in love; with her best friend, Teddy. On his eighteenth birthday, she buys him a lottery ticket as a joke – but to their astonishment, he wins $140 million and changes everything. 

At first it seems like a dream come true, but it quickly spirals into more of a curse than a windfall and Alice begins to wish she could take the ticket back. But she knows that you can’t change time, better than anyone. Will she and Teddy ever find their way back to each other? 

I really enjoyed this novel. I think it’s a really feel-good YA, and I got through it so quickly which was an added bonus. It’s a real dreamy book – both in the way of winning the lottery, and the way it was written! I felt so relaxed reading it, although I was completely unable to put it down. Continue reading

Pro-Review Writing Tips! | I: The Writing Process

Slight disclaimer: I am by no means the world’s best reviewer. However, I have reviewed a lot of books in my time, and I thought I would share some of my tips of how to make your reviews rock. Or, at least, be mildly interesting.

This is one of three different blog posts in the mini series (they’ll be going up in the next few weeks). This one is (as you have seen) about the writing process of the actual review; then we get onto how to write a rocking book description; and finally just some final hints, tips, and pieces of advice to be a kind and considerate, as well as good, reviewer. Enjoy!  Continue reading

Book Review | A Quiet Kind of Thunder by Sara Barnard

30197201Steffi doesn’t talk, but she has so much to say.
Rhys can’t hear, but he can listen.
Their love isn’t a lightning strike, it’s the rumbling roll of thunder.

Steffi has been a selective mute for most of her life – she’s been silent for so long that she feels completely invisible. But Rhys, the new boy at school, sees her. He’s deaf, and her knowledge of basic sign language means that she’s assigned to look after him. To Rhys, it doesn’t matter that Steffi doesn’t talk, and as they find ways to communicate, Steffi finds that she does have a voice, and that she’s falling in love with the one person who makes her feel brave enough to use it. – from Goodreads

I absolutely LOVED this book. I was in need of a lovely YA romance, and that’s exactly what this book offered: but with diversity!  Continue reading

Book Review & Blog Tour | Right Behind You by Lisa Gardner

I’m participating in a blog tour! This is stop #6 of the RIGHT BEHIND YOU blog tour, set up by Headline. My post is a review of the newest novel by experienced crime writer Lisa Gardner.

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Eight years ago, Sharlah’s brother, Telly Ray Nash, beat their drunken father to death with a baseball bat to save them both. Sharlah has had no contact with her sibling since. She’s moved from foster to foster, and has finally found her forever home with her future adoptive parents, Quincy and Rainie, as well as with her dog, ex-police dog German Shepherd, Luka. But is she safe? 

The call comes in: a double homicide at a gas station in their sleepy little town. It seems that, despite everything, Telly isn’t done killing yet. And Sharlah might be his next victim.  Continue reading

Book Review | Hello Me, It’s You by Hannah Todd and others

hyim1I was so so excited and happy when this book was added to my NetGalley shelf, and I read it in a morning. It was fabulous. The letters are really hard-hitting. Not all of them meant a lot of me, but even just a line here and there had me pausing for a moment and thinking. It’s a book I really needed at this time, and I will keep it on my phone, and maybe even buy a physical copy when I can. Continue reading

Book Review: Nevernight by Jay Kristoff

y648From Goodreads: 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. Continue reading

Book Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by JK Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany

IMG_2141A GoodReads summary:

It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children.

While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places. Continue reading

Book Review: Murder Most Unladylike by Robin Stevens

IMG_6416When Daisy Wells and Hazel Wong set up a secret detective agency at Deepdean School for Girls, they struggle to find a truly exciting case. That is, until Hazel discovers the body of their science mistress, Miss Bell – and when they return five minutes later, the body is gone. Now the girls have to solve a murder and prove a murder happened in the first place, before the killer strikes again. Will they succeed? And can their friendship stand the test? – adapted from back of book

Wow. Wooooooow. This is the probably the first true 5 stars I’ve given this year, because you know what? I couldn’t find a flaw with this book.

Continue reading

Book Review: The Year of The Rat by Clare Furniss

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Actual rating: 4.5

To Pearl, there is nothing sweet about her baby sister Rose who caused her mother’s premature death and turned her world upside down. To Pearl? Rose is an imposter. Rose is The Rat.

Well. This was a book I did not expect.

It was a lovely, coming-of-age story dealing with the death of a loved one and going through the grieving process. This book is one that will break you. I was in tears by the end of it (which was a tad embarrassing in a public café but I don’t think anyone noticed), both happy and sad.

Because, yes, this book is also ridiculously funny. It’s not exactly to be expected – a book about death that’s funny? Yes, believe it not. The writing style was just fabulous and I honestly did not want to put it down.

The Year of The Rat isn’t just about death and grief, though. It’s also got beautiful family relationships like between Pearl’s dad(s) and her grandmother, and, yes, her sister Rose. And friendship! Although Pearl has “a thing” for the grandson next door, that’s almost brushed over in this book and it focusses on Pearl’s friendship with Molly. Molly didn’t appear in the book that much, which saddened me, although she was almost constantly referenced. She seemed really fun.

This lost a measly half a star (but it was rounded up for the rating so all is good) because I felt Pearl was a little too harsh. Like, I get that she was grieving, I really do (I’ve lost people too) but she was just too icy and I felt like I really didn’t like her at some points. I also thought she was actually going to kill Rose at one point too and that genuinely scared me. And I don’t like scary books. But nevertheless, Pearl was okay. I just didn’t particularly like her.

This book, though, is honestly brilliant and I would highly recommend it. I was also so so pleased when I discovered my copy had EXTRA CONTENT! – an interview with the author, reading group questions and an extra short story to mention a few! 😀


 

TITLE: The Year of The Rat
AUTHOR: Clare Furniss
GENRE: YA
PUBLISHER//YEAR OF PUBLICATION: Simon & Schuster // 2015 (orig. 2014)
NUMBER OF PAGES: 306 (on GoodReads it says 352 because EXTRA CONTENT AS HAS BEEN ALREADY EXCITEDLY DISCUSSED)
ISBN: 9781471145919
GOODREADS
PERSONAL SOURCE: Present for Christmas- thanks Santa
RATING: 4.5/5