Archive | May, 2012

Booking Through Thursday – DIY

31 May

Booking Through Thursday is a weekly bookish meme held over on Booking Through Thursday!

A while ago, I interviewed my readers for a change, and my final question was, “What question have I NOT asked at BTT that you’d love me to ask?” I got some great responses and will be picking out some of the questions from time to time to ask the rest of you. Like now.

Cathy De Los Santos asks:

If you could write a book, what would it be about, and why? (Though, of course, some of you already HAVE.)

It is one of the things on my ultimate to do list to write a book. When i was younger, a lot younger, i used to make up short stories around the Enid Blyton books.

I do have an idea in my head for a story. It’s a young adult book and it’s not about vampires or werewolves. I don’t have anything against these books, but just how many of them are there out there? I’d like to do something different! It would be a modern-day St Claires or Mallory Towers book. Just see how much influence Enid Blyton has had on me!

Hopefully one day I’ll put pen to paper!

Shades of Grey – Michael Cargill

30 May

Started – 23/5/12

Finished – 30/5/12

Format – Kindle e-book

Synopsis – John is not a very nice man. He works for the government. So who has tied him to a chair and what do they want?

James is a British soldier during WWII. Tom is a young boy with a terrible secret.

Three stories. Three very different people. All of them battling to survive.

My Thoughts – I won this book in a givaway from the lovely Becky at her blog a few weeks back. Now before i start I’m just going to state that this is not a book like the one that has a very simular name.

This book is a collection of three short stories, and as the synopsis above states, the main theme through the book is survival. I did think that it was war to start with, but the last story really didnt fit the theme.

The first book in the collection was Shades of Grey. This is about a man called Jack, who we find tied to a chair. His thoughts go from the present, being surrounded by people with sniper rifles, and going back to the past where he found his wife in bed with his neighbour. I liked how these two halfs of the story fitted together and it really worked for me.

The second book in the collection was There and Back Again, I just couldnt get The Hobbit referance out of my head all through this story! However in my opinion this was the best story out of the three. This is about James, a foot-soldier during the first world war in France in the trenches. In this he faces his first battle and kills a man for the first time. I liked the emotion behind it and how he still had time to write home to his mum and dad back in England.

The final book in the collection was Down the Rabbit Hole, the title for me reminded me of Alice in Wonderland a little bit. This book is about a little boy called Tom who has a toy rabbit called Borger. He gets abused by his father and is unhappy. Now the bunny starts to talk to him and gets him to do quite horrible things if I’m honest. I didnt like this story at all, I’m not a fan of horror books and for me this is exactly what it was. I am a little uncomfortable to read about a little boy doing all those horrible things.

Now the book as a whole. I enjoyed this book, but to be honest it isnt one of my favourites. I liked the first two stories, but the third for me really put me off. I also thought that it was very gorey in places, which for me at least does put me off a little.

I would recommend this book for people that like crime/thriller/horror books, but for me the last story didnt hook me in as the others did.

Rating – 3/5

WWW Wednesdays (30th May)

30 May

WWW Wednesdays is a weekly bookish meme held over on Should Be Reading. To play along just answer the following questions

What are you currently reading?

In book form I’m currently reading The Difference a Day Makes by Carole Matthews. This is a chick lit book, something i havent read in quite a while. I love Carole Matthews, she is one of my favourite chick lit authors and her books are always fun with a serious message behind them. this book is very good, it hooked me in after a while and i cant wait to read more tonight!

On my kindle I’m currently reading Around the World in 80 Days by Jules Verne. This is the choice for the reading circle for June over on the BCF. this is a book that ive always wanted to read but have never got around to, so now is a good a chance as any to read it!

What did you recently finish reading?

I finished one book this week, Shades of Grey by Michael Cargill. I won this book in a giveaway from Becky and i really enjoyed it. It was a collection of three short stories, very different ones and it was a very good book.

What do you think you’ll read next?

I’ve changed my mind to what I’m going to read next, I’m going to read a book for the group read of the Rory Challenge. Its going to be The Opposite of Fate by Amy Tan. Its not a book i have heard of before, but it sounds very good.

Ellie Foster’s English Coursework – Tina Orr Munro

29 May

Started – 6/5/12

Finished – 23/5/12

Format – Kindle e-book

Synopsis – Ellie Foster’s family holiday isn’t going well. Firstly, she’s not even with her family. Ok her mum’s there, but that’s it. Maybe the love child is related to her in some way but definitely not Trevor, her mums hippy boyfriend, or his other kids, maniac twins Sky and Blue. Secondly, she needs to find a boyfriend on this trip or risk being labelled a loser and having to spend the rest of her school life with yellow teethed Lucy Telling as her only friend. Worst of all, she’s got to record the whole disaster in a diary and submit it as coursework or risk failing her English GCSE! Before she knows it she s making a fool of herself in front of a Greek God, batting off an annoying nerd, hiding from her crazy Gran, getting Trevor arrested, and dealing with the return-of-the-father. It’s a wonder she has time to write down anything at all…

My Thoughts – I downloaded this book back in January as it was free for a day on the kindle. The idea of the book really appealed to me, as did the cover.

This book is written in diary form, which for me is a format that really appeals to me. Ellie Foster needs to keep a diary for her holidays otherwise she will fail her GCSE English Coursework, and this is how this book is introduced. Ellie and her extended family, her mum, step-dad, his twin children and her half sibling (or the love child) go on holiday to Greece. Ellie doesnt get on with her step-dad or step siblings deep down their is some resentment towards them for having to share her mum with them. She also isnt too much of a fan of ‘the love child’, i really wanted to know if the baby was a boy or a girl! Just something that bugged me through the book.

Ellie wants to go to Greece and find a Greek god and finally ‘do it!’ as she thinks she is the only person at school that has not yet ‘done it.’ Her best friend fills her head with all different stories and she feels a little under pressure to keep up with the crowd and fit in.

This book is a brilliant childrens/young adult book. I would say its more of a pre-teen book however, i am well out of being a pre-teen and i really enjoyed the book. It was very funny in places, and had me laughing out loud, but at the same time it had some serious messages behind it. Like, the greek man she finds is not all he seems, and she gets in quite a difficult spot with him. Luckily she gets out of it unscathed, but its a good book to point out to teenage girls that somethings are not all they seem.

What i liked most about this book is that it deals with issues that are current with teenage girls. For example, fitting in with there peers, and always wanting to be with the in crowd was good. Although it was a work of fiction, it could quite easily have happened to a number of teenage girls.

This is a very good book, very highly recommended and ive had a look on the authors website on Amazon and she is writing a sequel to this book, i can hardly wait!

Rating – 4.5/5

Its Monday! What Are You Reading? (28th May)

28 May

Its Monday! What are you Reading? is a weekly bookish meme held on Book Journey by Sheila. It’s a great place to discuss your week in reading and see what others are reading too.

I didnt take part last week as i hadn’t finished any books and didnt want to post the same as the previous week, just for the posting. But i am off work on holiday until next Tuesday and i am hoping to get lots and lots of reading in the sunshine 🙂

Books Read

I finished two books, one paperback and one e-book. The paper book i finished was Twilight by Stephenie Meyer. Wow i loved this book, i am definitely now a twilight fan. I was put off reading this book before because of all the hype and all of the teenage girls that seem to like it, but i loved it. i cant wait to read the next book in the series.

On my kindle i read Ellie Foster’s English Coursework by Tina Orr Monro. This is a fantastic Young Adult book. It is about Ellie Foster who goes to Greece for two weeks with her family. It takes the form of a diary and she writes all her teenage angst into it. It is really good, perfect for teenage girls.

Reading Now

In book form I’m currently reading The Difference A Day Makes by Carole Matthews. This is a chick lit book, but i am in the mood to read something light and fluffy. I do enjoy Carole Matthews books, they are always good to read, but also with a serious message behind them.

On my kindle I’m currently reading Shades of Grey by Michael Cargill. I won this book in a giveaway and I’m  really enjoying it. It is a collection of short stories and i think the main theme surrounding them is war, i think!

Next up

Next up is a book that has been picked for the Rory Gilmore Reading Challenge over on the BCF. It is The Opposite of Fate by Amy Tan. I hadn’t heard of the book before, but it sounds really good!

Synopsis – Amy Tan was born into a family that believed in fate. In The Opposite of Fate: A Book of Musings, she explores this legacy, as well as American circumstances, and finds ways to honor the past while creating her own brand of destiny. She discovers answers in everyday actions and attitudes-from writing stories, decorating her house with charms, learning to ski, and living with squirrels, to dealing with three members of her family afflicted with brain disease, surviving natural disasters, and shaking off both family curses and the expectations that she should become a doctor and a concert pianist.

With the same spirit, humor, and magic that characterize her beloved novels, Amy Tan presents a refreshing antidote to the world-weariness and uncertainties we face today, contemplating how things happen-in her own life and beyond-but always returning to the question of fate and its opposites: the choices, charms, influences, attitudes, and lucky accidents that shape us all.

Books Brought

I brought one book in the last week, The Opposite of Fate by Amy Tan.

Booking Through Thursday – Pet Names

24 May

Booking Through Thursday is a weekly bookish meme held over on Booking Through Thursday!

This weeks question asks,

A while ago, I interviewed my readers for a change, and my final question was, “What question have I NOT asked at BTT that you’d love me to ask?” I got some great responses and will be picking out some of the questions from time to time to ask the rest of you. Like now.

Lu asks

Do you have any pet that has a name inspired by your readings?

If not, what would you pick if you DID?

Do any of your friends have book-based names for their pets? (Or their children?)

Both my dogs have book inspired names although only one was intentional. My first dog we had we named Sam, just because we liked the name. It wasnt until after we realised that it’s quite a popular name, and is out of my mum’s favourite ever book The Lord of the Rings. The second dog that we got last year was a rescue dog and his name was Pumpkin, but we could change it if we wanted. We needed to change it to something beginning with the letter P, so i really wanted to tie his name in with the other dog, so i chose Pippin. So we have half the hobbits in our house, and for the minute that’s how it will stay!

Now i don’t have any children, but i do like to discuss baby names with my boyfriend, and the only names we seem to agree on its characters from Twilight!

For a girl i like Alice, Rosalie and Isabella and for a boy i like Jasper! However i do love reading character names in books and i can safely say my children will have book inspired names!

Twilight – Stephenie Meyer

23 May

Started – 11/5/12

Finished – 22/5/12

Format – Paperback Book

Challenges – 1001 Childrens Books You Must Read

Synopsis – When 17 year old Isabella Swan moves to Forks, Washington to live with her father she expects that her new life will be as dull as the town.

But in spite of her awkward manner and low expectations, she finds that her new classmates are drawn to this pale, dark-haired new girl in town. But not, it seems, the Cullen family. These five adopted brothers and sisters obviously prefer their own company and will make no exception for Bella.

Bella is convinced that Edward Cullen in particular hates her, but she feels a strange attraction to him, although his hostility makes her feel almost physically ill. He seems determined to push her away – until, that is, he saves her life from an out of control car.

Bella will soon discover that there is a very good reason for Edward’s coldness. He, and his family, are vampires – and he knows how dangerous it is for others to get too close.

My Thoughts – This was the first time that i had read this book, although at times it did feel that i was the only person in the world that hadnt. I was put off by all the hype that surrounded the book when it came out (Team Edward, Team Jacob, etc!) and it really put me off it. So now I decided to pick it up now and give it a go. I have already seen the film of the book, so unfortunatly i was comparing the book to the film as it went along, something that i hate doing!

This book is about Bella (Isobella) Swan who moves to Forks to live with her Dad who is the Chief. Its here that she tries to make a new life, something that she isnt looking forward to at all. She attends the local high school and makes some friends. She also captures the attention of Edward, a boy who she just cant seem to understand in the slightest.

It seems that Edward just plain dislikes Bella to start with, to the point that he tries to change classes to avoid having to be near to her. But when Edward saves her life, it becomes apparent that they cannot stay away from each other, much to Edwards horror.

Soon it seems that Edward is hiding something and Bella finds out what it is. Edward is a vampire, along with the rest of his family, Carlisle, Esme, Alice, Emmett, Rosalie and Jasper. Bellas reaction to this is not what Edward expects, she is fine with putting herself in danger because she is totally and utterly in love with him.

In this book we are also introduced to Jacob and his father. We dont find out exactly what they are until the next book in the series, but they are introduced all the same.

I really really really enjoyed this book. I was a little bit aphrensive about reading it, as some people say its like marmite, you either love it or you hate it, but i am please to say that i loved it. its not a book that is a huge work of literary fiction, but it is a great romance and young adult book. I liked how many twists and turns there were to this book, although i knew what was going to happen as i had seen the film before i kind of forgot parts of it and was surprised again. I really enjoyed the baseball scene as that is where we are introduced to James and this is where the story really starts to get exciting.

I am definitaly going to read more in the series and i would recommend this book to anyone that hasnt yet read it. You never know you might love it, just like i did!

Rating – 5/5