Thursday, 30 June 2016

The Month in Books: June

Hey guys! 
It's wrap up time...not that there's much to wrap up! 
Nobody panic, everyone remain calm...but...I only read four books this month. FOUR. I do not know what is wrong with me, but it's taking me ages to read anything, although towards the end of the month I'm now getting back to normal! I haven't even read the month's classic or Harry Potter! 
For July I'm aiming to basically read everything I didn't manage to the past two months because SERIOUSLY. I'm actually so annoyed at myself! To be fair I have been pretty busy with photos, and then there was the "I've been rejected multiple times and I'm failing epically, let me lie in bed eating chocolate and watching Netflix" phase but still! Epic faaaaiiill! 
So what did I manage to read? Well....

All The Feels by Danika Stone
Okay so this book is freaking brilliant! It's hilarious, it's relatable, the characters are brilliant, it's perfect okay. Definitely one of those books you'll read again and again! It was so hard to put down, and if you're not careful you'll read it in one sitting and then regret it because it's over! 

The War Against The Assholes by Sam Munson
This wasn't really what I was expecting, and while I liked parts of it, I disliked other parts. Like it was concise but at some points there needed to be more detail because at some points I was confused and I finished the book not entirely clear on things! 

The Crown's Game by Evelyn Skye 
This is totally one of my favourite books from the year and it was SO good! I loved the characters, I loved the world, it was so authentic and easy to get lost in. The romance was perfect, it didn't overshadow the story and the love triangle wasn't even a real thing basically! I loved the magic, the humour, the originality to it and I need the next book now okay because the ending was just...NOPE. 

The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan
So I did fine reading this without reading Riordan's other books, except for Magnus Chase that is! I'd meant to read them, but I ran out of time! Anyway, this book was so hilarious and should hate him because of how arrogant he is but he's kind of loveable at the same time, and his character development is a beautiful thing! 

What did you guys read this month? You did better than me right!? 

Wednesday, 29 June 2016

June Book Haul

Hey guys!
It's time for my June Book Haul! I'm gonna keep this as simple and fast as possible, I've been slacking on the blogging because I have so much stuff to do! 
I've had another month full of things to be grateful for, and with a lot of epic post! 

So first up are the books that I have been lucky enough to receive from publishers! 

Red's Untold Tale by Wendy Toliver
I am a HUGE Once Upon A Time fan so when I got emailed asking if I'd like to review this it was kind of a no brainer! Red is one of my favourite characters and I wish she was in the show more! 

I love me some dragons and this sounds super intriguing, it's been described as "Guardians of the Galaxy meets The Hobbit"...two of my favourite movies! 

Imprudence by Gail Carriger
The sequel in a spin off series from Carrigers Parasol Protectorate, and I'm so excited to see what happens next! I'm definitely going to make time to re-read the previous book because I LOVE these books! 

Duskfall by Christopher Husberg
I'm being spoiled with fantasy and this one sounds like it's going to be one of the good ones, I'm excited to get started on it! 

All The Feels by Danika Stone
Okay so at the time of writing this post, I've just started this and I had to force myself to stop reading it because it's completely hilarious and I would have stayed up until the early hours reading it in one go! 

Songs About A Girl by Chris Russell
I've heard a lot about this book and I'm intrigued to see what all the hype is about! Plus I'm a sucker for boyband fiction shhhhh! This also came with a link to a playlist to match the awesome!? 

I was hooked on this by the title, not going to lie! It screams unique and steampunk at very loud volumes and the synopsis sounds brilliant! 

Vigil by Angela Slatter
The synopsis hauled me in on this one because it sounds so original, keep an eye on the blog because I'm gonna be doing the blog tour for this one! 

This was a surprise in the post, and I love Star Wars books and I saw everyone raving about the first book! This is obviously the sequel to the first book, and I think I'm gonna have to pick up the first one now! 

King Slayer by Virginia Boecker
One of my most anticipated sequels of the year, I completely loved Witch Hunter when I read it last year and I've been so excited to see what's going to happen next! 

The Shadow Hour by Melissa Grey
Another of my most anticipated sequels, the first book kind of made my month when I read it last year, and pulled me in to this fantastic world that helped me to block some other stuff out, and I've been so excited to get back there and see how my ship is doing! 

Paper and Fire by Rachel Caine
Aaaaannnd a third for the 'Most Anticipated Sequel' category, although I only read the first book recently, Caine is kind of an auto-buy author for me! I just loved the first book, once it got going! 

I got a couple of really cool books this month, as well as some manga which I stared at on the shelf for ages and ultimately forgot to add to this....oops? I'm sure you can guess which manga it is anyway! 

These Vicious Masks by Tarun Shanker & Kelly Zekas
Not going to lie, the cover drew me in, and then I read the synopsis and it was like...NEED. So I finally picked it up! 

Thief of Lies by Brenda Drake
I actually already read this because I reviewed it on NetGalley, but I wanted a finished copy because I loved it so much and I managed to get a bargain! 

Ruined by Amy Tintera
Another bargain! I couldn't resist this one because everyone's been raving about it and it was in Fairy Loot's box and I couldn't resist after reading the synopsis! 

The Near Witch by V E Schwab
This book has been missing from my Schwab collection, along with the sequel to The Archived! This book is really tricky to get hold of, you can only get it if you buy it used, but I just NEED all of the authors books so whatever! 

Soulless by Gail Carriger
I love Carriger's books and so of course I had to get the super fancy, limited edition of the first book in the Soulless series! If you think the cover is should see the endpapers! 

Legacy of Kings by Eleanor Herman
I've been after this for a while, ever since it was making the rounds last year at all the book con's and I finally picked it up because I'd had a crappy day and was like "screw it" basically! 

Aaaannd finally we have my haul from the charity book shop trip that I was tweeting about the other day! I don't know why people have a problem with charity shops, I books and the money goes to charity?! Aside from the snatching incident which I'm still not over because 50TH ANNIVERSARY LORD OF THE RINGS SNATCHED FROM UNDER MY FINGERS. But yeah. 

The Bloody Red Baron by Kim Newman
I'm slowly collecting all the Anno Dracula books and this is one of the ones I needed it and it honestly looks like it has never been read! Bargaaaain!

The Axeman's Jazz by Ray Celestin
This intrigued me...history...murder...New Orleans...what's not to love?

The Court of The Air by Stephen Hunt
Not going to lie, I first looked at this book because of the cover and I'd been debating it for ages and ages so when I saw it looking all brand new I thought...why not!? 

The sequel to the book above....obviously I needed to get the sequel because ya know....once I've read the first book I need to read the second! 

Retromancer by Robert Rankin
This just sounded interesting and had a pretty cover. I'm simple/shallow like that. 

The Prisoner of Heaven by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
Another author who's books I'm collecting! Another one checked off the list! 

Lady Audley's Secret by Mary Elizabeth Braddon
I collect all the Penguin English Library's and I was actually surprised to see this in the shop! 

Because I'm thick and not as literary as others, I had no idea the author had written other books, and this edition just so happened to match by Cather in the Rye edition. 

Nanny Oggs Cookbook by Terry Pratchett 
Once again, I collect all of the authors books and I know it's not an ACTUAL book per se but still! 

Aaaannnd there you have my book haul! It's missing a few things that just turned up the other day, but you can see them on Twitter! 

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Review: The Hidden Oracle

The Hidden Oracle
Rating: 4/5
Buy or Borrow: Buy 
Source: Copy courtesy of the publisher, Puffin! 

How do you punish an immortal?

By making him human.

After angering his father Zeus, the god Apollo is cast down from Olympus. Weak and disorientated, he lands in New York City as a regular teenage boy. Now, without his godly powers, the four-thousand-year-old deity must learn to survive in the modern world until he can somehow find a way to regain Zeus's favour.

But Apollo has many enemies - gods, monsters and mortals who would love to see the former Olympian permanently destroyed. Apollo needs help, and he can think of only one place to go . . . an enclave of modern demigods known as Camp Half-Blood.

Okay, I'm going to be straight up with all of you first before I get started on the review! So, I have all the Percy Jackson and Heroes of Olympus books chilling on my shelves and the plan was to read them all before I read this book...but I just didn't have the time. So I went in to this book having not read them and with only basic knowledge of what happens in PJ! Now some people may complain about being spoiled, but I looked at it a little bit differently. Sure there was a spoiler or two for the other books, but I didn't think it was actually that bad and rather than spoiling the books for me, it's actually made me want to read them even more to find out how the characters got to the places they're at in the book, what went on between all of them and so on! Like Nico for instance! I actually didn't think it was a problem at all. 

From what I could tell, The Hidden Oracle intersects with the other books perfectly, catching up with old characters, finding out what they're doing and so on. It wraps things up with events and characters and answers questions from the other series that may have been left, as well as showing us more of other characters and so on. There's mentions of Annabeth and what she's doing that allude to The Sword of Summer so I'm assuming this is set at the same time as Sword of Summer and now I'm really intrigued to see if the two books are going to cross over or overlap or something! 

As soon as I started to read the book, I fell in to the world and became completely engrossed in the book. There where hilarious Haikus at the top of each's an Apollo thing okay!? Apollo himself was completely hilarious and there where so many lines I had to mark down because they cracked me up, and he was even quite insightful and deep at one point! There's definitely more going on behind his arrogant/narcissistic self, you just don't see it much. He's kind of a drama queen, which made for such an entertaining narrative, he was hilariously self involved and self obsessed, but it was rewarding to see him start to develop friendships with the other camp members and with Meg, and to develop relationships with his kids...weird as that was! Seeing him inflicted with 'mortal emotions' and his struggle with all that and the transition between God to mortal, was also interesting to watch. I just loved his narrative, you had to laugh at his ego at points! But then you'd see parts of him, like when he'd think about his two loves and he'd be perhaps the most serious of all and you end up feeling for him, and all the pain he's been through. At some points, I have to admit, I couldn't decide if he was being really, really sarcastic or really, really dumb or a bit of both! 

Meg was an interesting character. I loved her interactions with Apollo, she didn't take any of his crap, and they kind of grew on each other, they made the perfect team. She develops just as much as Apollo over the course of the book. She's plenty mysterious for most of the book, she's clearly had training and she's kinda badass and she's really powerful but at the same time she's kind of shady. I was like 'what are you hiding?' at some points and I didn't fully trust her. She surprised me towards the end of the book, and I felt for Apollo even more because Meg is kind of his first friend, and I'm not sure how I feel about her any more now. I feel for her, and I understand her motivations and actions but at the same time it's like...but still. 

There's plenty of other fantastic characters in the book, Percy pops up as do a couple of other characters from the books. I loved Apollo's son Will and his boyfriend Nico. Individually they're brilliant characters, and I was intrigued by Nico and the allusions to his past. Will I liked because he kind of takes care of everyone he cares about, and I loved watching his relationship with Apollo develop. Together, I loved Will and Nico to another level, they where hilarious and adorable and Nico is so snarky and I really want some more Will and Nico, not gonna lie! They made me laugh a hell of a lot. 

I also completely loved Kayla and Austin, Apollos other kids, they where brilliant and while it was weird with the whole 'Apollo being their dad but looking like a teenager' thing, it was nice to see them interact with him and get a feel for their characters, and see their relationship with Apollo grow and change as he did. I'd love to see more of them. Each of his kids has different strengths that they've gotten from him, and I loved Kayla trying to help Apollo when he was struggling and ugh it was just perfect. I also really loved Harley, Leo, the other campers and so on, and I'm hoping to see more of them and I'm curious about Leo who we definitely will see more of! I'm also super curious about Rachel! 
OH I have to mention Peaches. Peaches the Karpos. He's like a cupid, fruit baby thing, and he's Meg's new sidekick and he was just hilarious. I mean....he managed to be slightly menacing while only saying peaches and looking like a giant winged baby. 

I fell in love with all the characters, and Apollo's development was beautiful to watch, I can't wait to see more of him and his interactions and relationships with his kids and other campers. The book is brilliantly written, Riordan never once breaks character, and keeps up the entertaining narrative the entire way through the book. Riordan gives us an incredibly narcissistic and arrogant character who makes it clear he's out for himself and not at all inclined to be a do-gooder, who we should dislike and be unable to read about, but he's made his arrogance funny, and he's given Apollo a side that everyone can relate to...loss. He's given Apollo the odd moment when you see behind the arrogance and can feel sympathy for him. You end up wanting him to succeed and root for him, and as you watch him change you end up feeling kind of proud of him for adapting and changing and making friends. He has none of his powers so he kind of has to start over again, and when it comes to fighting he isn't what he was before and he struggles with that in a very relatable way, and he doesn't really believe in himself all that much at one point so it's really rewarding to see him save the day despite being limited from what he was before and thinking he can't do it and needs a camper to do it for him. It was incredibly interesting to read about this teenager who is actually a thousands of years old God, it made for an interesting voice. 

There where plot twists and surprises all over the place and a flawless set up for the next book. I'm excited to see what's going to happen next to Apollo. I'm intrigued to see if he'll change more, and to see how things will play out. I love Greek mythology and I love what Riordan does with it, and I love the twist about the bad guys, the Triumvirate, and the Romans, it's something I've not seen before and I'm intrigued by it. The Hidden Oracle is bursting with action and humour, honestly it's completely hilarious, and it's a generally fun read with plenty of originality to it, and enough surprises and plot twists to keep you on your toes! Apollo is a character you should dislike, but you end up loving him anyway, he really, really reminded me of Lockhart from what he was saying about Percy....repeatedly. Apollo was an asshole, but he was a loveable asshole and this book was hugely entertaining from beginning to end. 


Monday, 27 June 2016

Blog Tour: The Crown's Game

The Crown's Game
Rating: 5/5
Buy or Borrow: Buy 
Source: Copy courtesy of the publisher....Harper 360! 
You Will: Want to throw it across the room at the ending, and re-read it endlessly! 

Vika Andreyeva can summon the snow and turn ash into gold. Nikolai Karimov can see through walls and conjure bridges out of thin air. They are enchanters—the only two in Russia—and with the Ottoman Empire and the Kazakhs threatening, the Tsar needs a powerful enchanter by his side.

And so he initiates the Crown’s Game, an ancient duel of magical skill—the greatest test an enchanter will ever know. The victor becomes the Imperial Enchanter and the Tsar’s most respected adviser. The defeated is sentenced to death.

Raised on tiny Ovchinin Island her whole life, Vika is eager for the chance to show off her talent in the grand capital of Saint Petersburg. But can she kill another enchanter—even when his magic calls to her like nothing else ever has?

For Nikolai, an orphan, the Crown’s Game is the chance of a lifetime. But his deadly opponent is a force to be reckoned with—beautiful, whip smart, imaginative—and he can’t stop thinking about her.

And when Pasha, Nikolai’s best friend and heir to the throne, also starts to fall for the mysterious enchantress, Nikolai must defeat the girl they both love... or be killed himself.
As long-buried secrets emerge, threatening the future of the empire, it becomes dangerously clear... the Crown’s Game is not one to lose.

Okay so I had to jump at the chance to participate in the blog tour for this book and review it because I'd seen a lot of hype about it all over Twitter and I checked it out on GoodReads and the setting appealed to me! I's an interesting time period and there's hardly ever any books set in a historical period of Russia and it's always nice to read something a little bit different! 

So, as soon as I started to read the book I was hooked, the writing style, the world of the book, it all hooked me in. I loved the imagery, and the way things where described, "Like lumbering giants attempting to construct a glass dollhouse" and so on. I loved how the magic was written, how it manifested and so on, it was brilliantly done, you could see what made it work. I liked how it was rare, and how it's used and the politics of the world regarding magic as well as politics in general. I just loved the authors writing style and the pace of the book was perfect. There where some fantastic plot twists that I really didn't see coming until they slapped me in the face, and then my brain immediately flashed on all the foreshadowing for each twist that I was clearly too dense to put together! The ending though...the ending is really not okay! Not when there's a wait for the next book! I couldn't believe it and I'm looking at the book like...where's the rest? That can't be it? NOOOO! I'm incredibly excited for the sequel and to see where things are going to go next, I have some theories and suspicions but I'm always wrong! 

The world really does rise up around you thanks to the world building and the writing, from the first page you have a mental image of what the setting looks like and it continues throughout the book with all the different settings, it's very vivid. You find yourself immersed in Imperial Russia, or rather alternate Imperial Russia! Skye perfectly blends fact and fiction, and makes the setting very authentic and believable without being over the top with the Russian words everywhere and stereotypes to prove it's Russia like some books I've read in the past! You get a feel for Russia, and there's the everyday life woven in as well as the rich history! Skye has created an incredibly rich setting, with a rich and unique magical system installed in to it, and gives you the politics of the world with enough detail to understand but not to drag dow the flow. 

The characters in the book are brilliant. I loved Vika, she was a delight to read, she was fiery, she took no shit from anyone, and she loved a challenge and rose to it. Nikolai was more laid back than Vika, he works hard and is quite mischievous too, and I got SUCH Will Herondale vibes! I really felt for his character and for Vika, they where both relatable and believable characters that you rooted for and I was getting tense with how things where going to end because I loved both characters SO much! Pasha was also a brilliant character, I loved him, I was easy to relate to because fellow book worm! He was such a happy, cheerful soul, but then towards the end of the book...I can't even! Why is it always the characters I like that end up needing to be smacked upside the head!? I was so disappointed in him at the end. I  understood where he was coming from and his reasoning but still. WHY PASHA WHY. 

As well as our main characters there's a tonne of really awesome secondary characters, Ludmila who I adored, she was like a mother to Vika and I loved their relationship; Renata who I wasn't too sure about in the beginning but I ended up really liking and how she behaved towards Vika, she surprised me and her behaviour made a nice change from the usual! Gavriil and Ilya Pasha's guards who where a humorous point, and seeing them interact with Pasha just brought everything to life a bit more, made it a bit more realistic. Guards are usually mentioned and are just there in the background, the interactions made them more real! Aizhana the creepy woman who you can't help but feel for and then there's Yuliana, Pasha's sister. Yuliana was interesting, I liked her in the beginning but towards the end I was kinda like, okay...maybe not. I mean it was kind of the same as with Pasha, I got her actions and why she did it, but at the same time I didn't like her much for it or for influencing Pasha. She's not like Pasha, she's more stern and scary! 

Skye writes the relationships between the characters brilliantly! Pasha and Yuliana, like I said, where hilariously opposite. Pasha loves to read and hunt and is almost carefree, whereas Yuliana is more serious and more interested in the economics and politics and so on, she takes things more seriously than her older brother. I did like their interactions though and their relationship! I completely loved the friendship between Pasha and Nikolai, I actually liked that Pasha felt that Nikolai was better than him at everything, and he was good humoured about it, and it made him more believable than the usual "I am so great" male characters. Although towards the end you do see that it bothers him at some point, and again, it made him believable, especially with one of the plot twists! Pasha viewing himself as lesser than Nikolai, adequate even, made him endearing and relatable to me! I loved their banter, it made me chuckle and they where brilliant together and while I understood Pasha's reaction and couldn't really blame him, he did take it too far but still. 

The book is multi-pov, Vika, Nikolai, Pasha, Yuliana a little bit and Aizhana who provided the mysterious and creepy POV! Each character has a distinctive tone so you can differentiate between them, and I liked reading each characters interpretation of events, their thought process and so on. It helped you to understand all of the characters, their motivations and so on and made you connect with them. The cast of characters is truly brilliant and I'm excited to see more of them and to watch them change and develop more. It will be a shame for Pasha to lose his personality but I do think he's gonna have to change a bit after the events of this book, purely because he needs to with everything coming. 

There where so many things about this book that surprised me, when I read the synopsis I was expecting some public game, like the Hunger Games of magic or something but with two people, and this huge love triangle and all of this but I was pleasantly surprised. You have Vika thinking she's the only Enchanter and getting a rude awakening, Nikolai knowing who Vika is and what she is but she not knowing that he's the other Enchanter for the beginning of the book which was a nice change! I also wasn't expecting how things went between them in the beginning, I really liked how they both wrestled with their own morality for that period of time! I also wasn't expecting for the Crown's Game to be waged basically in secret with only the Enchanters and the Tsar knowing, it made it really interesting how they where playing this game and Pasha just thought all this stuff was happening because of his birthday and the people explained it away. It just made a pleasant change how some characters didn't know who or what other characters where, and didn't know what was going on and so on, it was so different from what I was expecting and it made me love the book even more. 

I really liked the romance, I have to say. The romance was secondary to the plot, the main focus of the book was the magic and the characters and I loved it, but there was the right amount of romance woven throughout. I loved watching Vika interact with Pasha and Nikolai and the relationships with both unfold. There's a little bit of a love triangle but it's obvious which is the real deal. Pasha had the whole lust thing going on rather than love, but I did think Pasha and Vika made good friends! I'd like to see that friendship sorted out in the next book, if it can be, which I'm not too sure about! I loved the relationship between Vika and Nikolai, they have their own problems, they're wrestling with their morality, and both of them are focusing on the Game, and trying to ignore the feelings that are slowly building up throughout the book. I just loved the two of them together! The ending of the book broke me it was like....OMG WHY?! *ugly sobs* *throws book* I'm so desperate for the next book already! I was worried at one point like...what if there isn't sequel!? But there definitely is so it's all good! 

I got some Will Herondale vibes from Nikolai but I got some serious Infernal Devices vibes from the book itself and I can't quite put my finger on why, but I liked it! I think it might be because I've not been this surprised by a book, this astounded and wondering since I read Clockwork Angel for the first time. Nikolai definitely reminded me of Will, but there where some vibes! OH I have to mention the bakery because oh my God! added a little fairy tale element to it with the bakery and the pumpkin shape of it, and the giant glass pumpkin and everything! There's this one scene inside the bakery with all the magical creations and oh my God I think I drooled a little bit. 

The Crown's Game was a brilliantly surprising read, it's well written, with fantastic imagery, and the world of the book is beautifully brought to life. Everything about this book is rich, the characters, the magic, the world, the settings, the history, the politics and so on. There where surprises everywhere and I think I was either too dense or too engrossed in the book to properly pick up on all the foreshadowing, so I at least was surprised! The book is imaginative, it sparked my imagination and I found it to be a magical, colourful and humorous read, with brilliant characters that where relatable and believable and brought the book to colourful and lively life! Plus there's a lovely romance that didn't compromise the plot of the book in any way and was brilliantly built up! I am incredibly excited to see what the author does with the story and characters next, it's definitely become a favourite of mine! 

The Best Magical Powers in Fiction

There's a lot of totally awesome magic in The Crown's Game and so I thought I'd hit you guys with the best magical powers in my opinion. I also had a little help from Nazima and Shazina! Although it kind of morphed from magical powers to magical systems at some points, so just roll with it! So for this part, I debated again and again and again and I've probably missed out loads, which is actually most likely a good thing because I've got 15 here as it is. Although to be fair the first two can probably be combined in to one! Feel free to point out any I missed down in the comments! In no particular order....

Ice Make Magic
Yep. I'm chucking in some magical powers from Manga, I couldn't not! Okay so this is Gray's magic from Fairy Tail and I actually think it's totally awesome because you can legit make anything out of ice with it, weapons, a clone of yourself, ice creatures etc etc. Maker magic in general is pretty awesome in Fairy Tail, so awesome I had to mention a different form of it....

Memory Make Magic
Yes. I'm doing another maker magic from Fairy Tail because this one is pretty freaking awesome too! With this magical power, you can control memories. Plus you can memorise other people's magic, which means you can make new spells by combining the two. Hello unlimited magical power that no-one can anticipate! 

Shadow Dragon Slayer Magic
This is the third and final magic I'm taking from Fairy Tail okay! Just...being able to turn to shadow has got it's advantages, sneaking up on people, hiding and so on. Not to mention being able to make weapons from shadow and all the other various things you can do with it. I think shadow magic is pretty cool! 

Okay so this is probably controversial because on the one hand do you really want to know when people are lying and everything, but on the other could come in handy a lot. 
 Truthwitch magic means you can tell truth from lie...tell me that won't ever come in handy?! Bloodwitch...being able to track people by their blood scent and control their blood...definitely useful....and kind of evil but still! 

This is Mare's magic from Red Queen, and she can control and generate electricity. Now. Put that magic in our never needing to lug a charger about...ever. Aside from that, in the books it comes in pretty handy, powering up stuff, killing people and so on. You never really see electrical magic in books, it's usually the standard four, Earth, Wind, Fire and Air. Also it's purple. Love me some purple. (I feel like Shadows, and Singers should get a mention as well because who doesn't want to be able to bend light to become invisible and use their voice to control people?)

Heartrenders are one of two types of Corporalki in the Grisha world. I so want to be a Heartrender *evil laughter* not only do they have a totally cool name but they have a cool power. They can manipulate the body of another person to damage it and when wouldn't that come in handy in life? For, you know, self defence....and torture.....and murder...wait what?! It's a pretty badass power. The other type of Corporalki being a Healer, the opposite of a Heartrender. 

Healing Magic
This is pretty broad and there's a tonne of books that have healing magic in them, the Grisha for instance, as mentioned above! How could this not be one of the best powers in fiction? When is being able to heal yourself or others never not useful? It had to make the list! 

Okaaaaayyy this is totally one of the coolest magical powers ever, I mean the whole Allomancy thing, consuming different Allomantic metals to do different things...strength, control peoples moods and so on...totally awesome in it's own right whichever one you get. But being a Mistborn...being able to use ALL of the Allomancy powers....TOO FREAKING AWESOME! 

This is Kell's magic from A Darker Shade of Magic, Kell is a Traveler so he gets to travel between different parallel universes. In the book he goes to different London's and that's all I'm saying because spoilers! I think it's a totally cool magical power to have...travelling to parallel universes...getting to visit different places. I'd love to visit Grey London the most I think! 

Fae Magic
This is pretty broad, so I'm going to be more specific...I'm talking the Fae magic from the Throne of Glass series and the A Court of Thorns and Roses series, I couldn't not mention Bae aka Rhys! Fae have some pretty epic magical powers, they have super fast healing, Aelin can control fire and water, she can shift in to another animal form; Rowan's got some nifty water and ice magic and can also shift in to an animal form. Over in ACOTAR each different Fae has different magic depending on what court they're from but I'm gonna have to choose Rhys's magical power because I love the whole night and shadows thing. He can winnow between different places, he can read minds and memories, he can manipulate memories, he's got the whole controlling darkness thing down and that's just a few examples of what he can do....Rhys is awesome okay. 

Arcana Magic
Okaaaayy this is from the Arcana Chronicles obviously, mostly I think Evie's is the most awesome. She's the Poison Princess aka The Empress, and she makes plants look hella scary okay. Poison thorn claws, thorn tornados, poison lips, regeneration, create plant life with growth, controlling plants (obviously), she's got some freaky palm lotus that throws out spores everywhere and chokes people, her hair emits toxic spores, and she can mesmerise men. Pretty freaking cool right? The other Arcana have some pretty freaky, but awesome, powers but Evie's is my favourite because it's the first time I didn't think plant/earth magic was lame! 

Not from any specific book, it's in a fair few, The Bone Season for example, but I kinda think it's one of the best. Yeah it's gross and involves hanging out in graveyards a lot which is kind of freaky but think about it. You have the power to animate an army. Like there are graveyards eveywhere, you have access anywhere you go to thousands of potential members for your army. Cool but gross, right? 

Speaking of The Bone Season, Paige's magical power is pretty awesome! She can casually jump in to the dreamscapes of other Clairvoyants, I think it's pretty cool! There's also a load of other types of clairvoyants in the books and some of them have some pretty cool powers too! I love the clairvoyant hierarchy going on in the Bone Season, not going to lie! 

Come on book nerds, we all know we'd love to be able to read our favourite characters and favourite items out of the books we read. Rhys anyone? How freaking awesome would it be to have your own The One Ring. Or a casual pet dragon. Or your own Rhys *heart eyes* I can't even. Forever gutted as a kid that I didn't have this power, not going to lie! 

Time Travel
Not entirely sure this counts, but let's roll with it. This is from the Ruby Red Trilogy (I still really need to read the other two!). The time travellers in the book are born with the time travelling gene and they prepare their whole lives for ya know...time travelling. Personally, the history nerd in me needs this power more than I need air. Imagine travelling back in time and solving some of the worlds biggest mysteries! I'm also gonna throw in other time manipulation like freezing time that I've seen in the Savant books by Joss the top of my head! 

Thursday, 23 June 2016

Feature: Take Away Treat Company

Hey guys! 
How's everyone doing? In the mood for some bookish items perhaps? Good! 
My very good friend Rebecca over at The Brunettes Bookshelf is not only very creative herself, but she has a very creative mum! Rebecca and her mum run Take Away Treat Company which is full of handmade goodies of the cute persuasion! There's also some bookish goodies on there too! Each item is made to order and seriously you freaking. cute. You should check out the mermaid tails they're so awesome. They'd make brilliant presents or you know...treats for yourself because everyone needs a treat now and then! Previously mentioned mermaid tails, apple cosies, mug/cup cosies, bags, pillows, baby gifts like blankets, crochet baskets, lavender bags to make your draws smell fresh and much more! 

Rebecca sent me a couple things and honestly....they're brilliant! Fantastic quality and beautifully made! I'm always looking for things to include in my photos and so I had a lot of fun taking the photos for these! 

Okay so first up is the crocheted Golden Snitch! Honestly this is perfect! I love having little things to have on my bookshelf and in my photos and this is perfect! I know a few of you have themed bookshelves, and I know a few of you have a Harry Potter shelf like I do full of the books, pop vinyls, and any other Harry Potter bits you can get your hands on! This is totally perfect!  

It sits well on a shelf, and in a photo, and I'm certain that you could probably hang it from the ceiling or something if you really wanted and asked Rebecca's mum really nicely to attach some hangy thing to it! Like that clear wire know what I mean. I'm just in love with this little Snitch okay. It's perfect, no lie! 

Keeping the Harry Potter train rolling and I have this bag made by hand by Rebecca and for any Mortal Instruments fans she has a totally awesome TMI bag up on the website RIGHT NOW! So the bag is sturdy, and it's water resistant to an extent, but then no-ones going to go dunking their bag in to a lake or something are they!? I love the simple design with the Deathly Hallows and Always. Just.....always *ugly sobs* 

Us bookish folk love a good tote bag, let's not lie and while Rebecca has HP and TMI totes, she also has some other cute designs, and she'll do a custom bag for you if you ask her nicely and tell her what you're after quote-wise etc! She legit hand paints them, you guys damn! You guys know you need a new tote for all your books when you go shopping...

Okay so I can hear you all shouting at me that Star Wars isn't a bookish item BUT there are Star Wars books so HA. Meet cup warmer Yoda. He's ridiculously adorable. Look at his little hands! I cannot even. I'm in love. He's crotchet as you can see, and seriously...SO CUTE! Yoda does up at the back with a nice, easy to button, button and he fits round a mug, a cup, a glass, any drinking receptacle that I have in my house basically. You need him in your life, he'll keep your drinks warm for you! 

Want a Yoda, you know you do! 
His little face, look at! 
Buy it now, you will! 
Do or do not, there is no try! 
I will stop now. Before someone punches me. all need to go check out Take Away Treat Company, have a little nose around, I guarantee you'll find something you like! Or you know, think of something you'd like to have made! I think these will just make really brilliant gifts for family and friends, as well as treats for yourself, they're hand made so you know they're good quality and they're unique! 

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Wishing For Wednesday #93

Hey guys! 
How's everyone doing?! After a quiet week last week feeling sorry for myself, I'm getting back to normal this week and I have a brand new WFW post for you! I've really sucked at this because I keep forgetting about it and I usually schedule it ahead but yeah. I'm way in to the future with book releases anyway so it doesn't really matter! 
First up this week I've got a nice little companion to a series I know a lot of you love and it  should be a fun read! It sounds like it's going to be completely gorgeous too! 
Secondly I've got one of my anticipated sequels, I completely loved the first book once I got in to it and I'm eager to see what happens next! 

The Ever Never Handbook

Every four years, two Reader children are kidnapped and brought to the School for Good and Evil to be trained for a life in a fairy tale. There, Evers and Nevers take courses in Animal Communication and Uglification, among others. The highest ranked students become the heroes and villains of the fairy tales — while the lowest, well, we don’t want to talk about what becomes of them.

This handbook contains the scoop students need in order to get to the top of their class — the fairy tales you need to know, the myths it’s dangerous not to know, spells you won’t live without, Who’s Who and What’s What, and much more. And of course, it’s all in glorious color because in the School for Good and Evil, nothing is black and white.

The Ever Never Handbook is out July 28th, pre-order your
Add it to  your

Paper and Fire

With an iron fist, The Great Library controls the knowledge of the world, ruthlessly stamping out all rebellion, forbidding the personal ownership of books in the name of the greater good.

Jess Brightwell has survived his introduction to the sinister, seductive world of the Library, but serving in its army is nothing like he envisioned. His life and the lives of those he cares for have been altered forever. His best friend is lost, and Morgan, the girl he loves, is locked away in the Iron Tower and doomed to a life apart.

Embarking on a mission to save one of their own, Jess and his band of allies make one wrong move and suddenly find themselves hunted by the Library’s deadly automata and forced to flee Alexandria, all the way to London.

But Jess’s home isn’t safe anymore. The Welsh army is coming, London is burning, and soon, Jess must choose between his friends, his family, or the Library willing to sacrifice anything and anyone in the search for ultimate control…

Paper and Fire is out July 5th, pre-order your
Add it to your

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Bookshelf Tour: Special Editions

Hey guys! 
It's time for another bookshelf tour! You guys voted over on my Twitter and wanted to see my Special Editions so here we go! Later than planned however, I had kind of a crappy week last week because stuff, and I just wasn't in the mood to edit the photos I'd taken and actually do the blog post, so yeah. This should have gone up last week but I was basically silent all week oops! 

So, there is one missing because it showed up the other day and it's all over my Twitter and Insta but I'd already taken the photos for this so I couldn't include it! These are all special or collectors editions that I have because I'm a sucker for a pretty book and can't resist them! 

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Okay so this has been on my shelves for ages and I still haven't actually read it yet but I will I swear! This is  the collectors edition and you guys it's completely gorgeous! It's got sprayed edges, the dust jacket is a poster on the inside and the cover under the jacket is awesome too! Lookie: 

Cath and Wren are identical twins, and until recently they did absolutely everything together. Now they're off to university and Wren's decided she doesn't want to be one half of a pair anymore - she wants to dance, meet boys, go to parties and let loose. It's not so easy for Cath. She's horribly shy and has always buried herself in the fan fiction she writes, where she knows exactly what to say and can write a romance far more intense than anything she's experienced in real life. Without Wren Cath is completely on her own and totally outside her comfort zone. She's got a surly room-mate with a charming, always around boyfriend, a fiction writing professor who thinks fan fiction is the end of the civilised world, a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words...and she can't stop worrying about her dad, who's loving and fragile and has never really been alone. Now Cath has to decide if she's ready to open her heart to new people and experiences, and she's realising that there's more to learn about love than she ever thought possible. 

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Jane Austen & Seth Grahame Smith

Soooo I loved Pride and Prejudice and I mean....P&P plus Zombies...what could be better?! I have the regular paperback version, the movie cover and then this edition. Which is completely gorgeous. It's all red and it's got fancy endpapers, and just look at it. It's one of my favourites! 


It is a truth universally acknowledged that a zombie in possession of brains must be in want of more brains. So begins Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, an expanded edition of the beloved Jane Austen novel featuring all new scenes of bone crunching zombie mayhem. As our story opens a mysterious plague has fallen upon the quiet English village of Meryton- and the dead are returning to life! Feisty heroine Elizabeth is determined to wipe out the zombie menace, but she's soon distracted by the arrival of the haughty and arrogant Mr Darcy. 

Divergent by Veronica Roth 

I'm fairy certain these where supposed to come in slipcases, but Waterstones just had them in shrink wrap so who knows, hence why mine looks a bit battered on the front! I still haven't actually read Divergent, I'm kind of hesitant because I've seen so many people complaining about the other two books and it's putting me off a bit but I can't resist a pretty book! 

For sixteen year old Tris, the world changes in a heartbeat when she is forced to make a terrible choice. Turning her back on her family, Tris ventures out, alone, determined to find out where she truly belongs. Shocked by the brutality of her new life, Tris can trust no one. And yet she is drawn to a boy who seems to both threaten and protect her. The hardest choices may yet lie ahead...

A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin

I freaking love Game of Thrones okay, so of course I had to get this collectors edition! Except when I discovered this, it was all sold out everywhere and still is so I actually ended up buying this used, and as you can's basically like new so I was lucky! I'm kinda gutted the publisher didn't do the other books but at the same time I'm glad because money! 

Do I need to do the synopsis? It's right up above this! It's readable right? 

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Hunger Games, another "OMG I completely love" although I haven't re-read in ages. I only have one set now, the adult ones, but like the black minimalist ones not the new cool shiny ones! I did have two because I had the kids covers but I didn't like them all that much! So this one has a gorgeous slipcase, as you can see, and it's just all nice and clothbound and has cool pages! 


Set in a dark vision of the near future, a terrifying reality TV show is taking place. Twelve boys and Twelve girls are forced to appear in a live event called The Hunger Games. There is only one rule: kill or be killed. When sixteen year old Katniss Everdeen steps forward to take her sisters place in the games, she sees it as a death sentence. But Katniss has been close to death before. For her, survival is second nature. 

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

A beautiful edition of a classic up next, the publisher has done a couple of these and they're completely gorgeous and I need to get the others, I just haven't gotten around to it yet! So anyway, this isn't as fancy as the one I've seen on Tumblr with the legit strike patch for matches, BUT I love it anyway! 

Guy Montag is a fireman. His job is to burn books, which are forbidden, being the source of all discord and unhappiness. Even so, Montag is unhappy; there is discord in his marriage. Are books hidden in his house? The Mechanical Hound of the Fire Department, armed with a lethal hypodermic, escorted by helicopters, is ready to track down those dissidents who defy society to preserve and read books. 

Eragon by Christopher Paolini 

Eragon! I remember first reading this when it came out and then pre-ordering each of the hardcovers in to Waterstones! I love dragons okay, and this was one of my favourite books as a kid. Every time I do these bookshelf tours I'm like..I really need to re-read that because I haven't in ages, but this is even more so true with this one because it's honestly been like...forever! So I love pretty books, and this is one of the prettiest! It's all blue and  faux leather-bound with shiny gold all over it....just look at it! 

Fifteen year old Eragon believes that he is merely a poor farm boy- until his destiny as a Dragon Rider is revealed. Gifted with only an ancient sword, a loyal dragon, and sage advice from an old storyteller, Eragon is soon swept into a dangerous tapestry of magic, glory, and power. Now his choices could save - or destroy- the Empire. 

Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare

Of course I got the fancy edition of Lady Midnight. How could I not? You guys know the story with Cassie Clare! Her books are some of the first YA I ever read and through them I got in to loads of other books and so on and so forth. Honestly, The Infernal Devices is my fave, more so than The Mortal Instruments, and Lady Midnight is on par with TID and I loved this book so much! I'm hoping the other two in the trilogy will be given the same fancy treatment! 

It's been five years since the events of City of Heavenly Fire that brought the Shadowhunters to the brink of oblivion. Emma Carstairs is no longer a child in mourning, but a young woman bent on discovering what killed her parents and avenging her losses. Together with her parabatai Julian Blackthorn, Emma must learn to trust her head and her heart as she investigates a demonic plot that stretches across Los Angeles, from the Sunset Strip to the enchanted sea that pounds the beaches of Santa Monica. If only her heart didn't lead her in treacherous directions...

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Couldn't resist buying this edition of TKAM! It's gorgeous, and this year I finally read it and there's a discussion about it on YouTube and on my blog, because I completely loved it. I can't even. I'm so annoyed at myself that it took me this long to read it! Not entirely sure I'll read the sequel though! But this is a gorgeous clothbound and you all need it now! 

Through the young eyes of Scout and Jem Finch, Harper Lee explores with exuberant humour the irrationality of adult attitudes to race and class in the Deep South of the 1930s. The conscience of a town steeped in prejudice, violence and hypocrisy is pricked by the stamina of one man's struggle for justice. But the weight of history will only tolerate so much. To Kill a Mockingbird is a coming-of-age story, an anti-racist novel, a historical drama of the Great Depression and a sublime example of the Southern writing tradition.

BOOM! My fancy editions, as I call them! There's a couple more on my wish list that I'm hoping to get at some point in life! Let me know what you want to see next down in the comments! I think leather-bounds came in a close second? 
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