Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Book Haul (II)

Hey everyone!

Its time for another book haul... So lately I have been spending quite a bit and over the past few months I have acquired 16 new books. Two of these I received from Simon & Schuester for review and the rest I bought from The Book Depository, Dymocks and Gleebooks. Some though you may have seen in my past reviews but without further ado these are the new books.

Steal Like An Artist by Austin Kleon

Paper Aeroplanes by Dawn O'Porter

Bridget Jones's Diary by Helen Fielding

1Q84 by Haruki Murakami

The Year Of The Rat by Clare Furniss

The Catcher In The Rye by J.D. Salinger

Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

Amy & Roger's Epic Detour by Morgan Matsen

These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner

One Flew Over The Cukoo's Nest by Ken Kesey

Cherry Bomb by Jenny Valentish

Being Jade by Kate Belle

The Life And Opinions Of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman by Laurence Sterne

Saga Vol.2 by Brian K. Vaughan

Saga Vol.3 by Brian K. Vaughan

I have quite a lot of reading to do and you will be seeing reviews of these coming up soon. Also let me know what books you have recently purchased.

Annelise xoxo

Thursday, July 3, 2014

June Wrap Up & July TBR

Hello everyone!

Yet another month of reading has passed, and I'm here to tell you what I read in the month of June. This month I finish a total of 7 books, which isn't quite as many as I had hoped to read. So without further ado here is what I read.

First I read The Strange And Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender by Lesyle Walton, I gave this book a 4/5 stars and have already reviewed it so go check it out.

Next I read Impulse by Ellen Hopkins which I absolutely loved and flew through, all of her books are written in prose which was extremely interesting and something you should definitely check out. This I gave a 5/5 stars.

I then finally finished Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler, which actually took me a while to read but in the end I did quite enjoy this tale of love and heart break. I gave this read a 4/5 stars.

This month I also read Alice's Adventures In Wonderland by Lewis Carroll which was definitely very interesting, unusual and seriously quirky, I gave this a 3/5 stars but any lover of Alice In Wonderland should definitely give the classic a go.

I then finished 'The Program' duology with the final book The Treatment by Suzanne Young, this was a perfect fast paced end to the series which I thoroughly enjoyed, giving this a 5/5 stars.

I also picked up To All The Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han, this great contemporary read, was extremely cute and highly enjoyable, something I would definitely recommend. I also gave this a 5/5 stars.

And finally this month I read The Year Of The Rat by Clare Furniss. I gave this book a 4/5 stars and also did a review which you should go check out.

So for the month of July there are quite a few books I hope to read, including:

  • The Diviners by Libba Bray
  • 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami
  • The Catcher In The Rye by J.D. Salinger
  • Being Jade by Kate Bell
  • These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman
  • Just Kids by Patti Smith
  • Wake by Robert J. Sawyer
Hopefully I get around to all these books and I'll keep you posted on what I think of them. Also I have an upcoming book haul so keep your eyes peeled for that.

Annelise xoxo

The Year Of The Rat by Clare Furniss Review

Hey guys!

Recently Simon & Scheuster gave me access to one of their most recent releases The Year Of The Rat by Clare Furniss, this young adult contemporary was a fantastic read. I must say also this cover is gorgeous, this is the first purple book in my collection, which I absolutely love.

This book tells the story of Pearl dealing with the recent death of her mother and the birth of her new sister which she calls 'The Rat' whom she blames for killing her mother. We are dragged into Pearl's immense grief and go on her journey of acceptance and pain and towards moving on with her life in which she is now motherless.

This emotional read is terribly heart breaking but the family relationships and all issues surrounding are so realistic and relatable. It really stood out to me that families aren't perfect in this world, they are irregular and unusual but sticking with those who truly love you is the key to pulling through such a horrible situation, which is something that Furniss captured amazingly, adding to the depth of the novel. One thing I loved about this book Furniss' writing style and how beautifully written this novel was, it really added to the heavy emotion of the book and the flow of the story.

We watch as Pearl alienates herself and loses interest in what she once deemed enjoyable which does include relationships with both family and friends as she deals with such raw grief, and she no longer feels attached to the real world which is also seen with the conversations she has with her mother in which she realises she is no longer a fulfilment of there perfect mother that she thought she was, which helped in the long run with her accepting her new sister and being able to tell how the main character is truly feeling.

The one thing I absolutely loved about this novel was the fact there was no hiding from the pain and emotion, Pearl was angry and sad and full of resent, therefore I felt every single one of the emotions with just as much force as the character did. This emotional read shows how death changes each and every one of us and that these feelings are powerful but we musn't always disconnect from loved ones instead let this event bring you closer.

This story is told over the span of a year, with each chapter being a different month, which was another feature I quite enjoyed enabling us to get the entire journey the characters went on. But as with all similar situations, peace and an acceptance of what has happened must be found which is what made the last few pages so heart breaking, honest and thought provoking. If you are looking for a short poignant emotional read, dealing with real situations then this is the book for you. I gave this a solid 4/5 stars which I seriously enjoyed and absolutely flew through.

Annelise xoxo

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

The Strange And Beautiful Sorrows Of Ava Lavender by Leslye Walton Review

Hey everyone!

Today I will be reviewing The Strange And Beautiful Sorrows Of Ava Lavender by Leslye Walton, which I picked up at the beginning of this month and did quite enjoy. Before getting into what I thought, I just have to say how gorgeous this book is, a lot of detail and work has gone into the design and manufacture of this book by Candlewick Press. To be honest this novel was definitely not what I thought it was and the expectations I had for it were all wrong, although I was pleasantly surprised by how this story line was done. This book follows the journey of Ava Lavender a girl with wings, her family and the generations that came before her. This is a tale of love, loss and the extraordinary adventure of life. Walton uses magical realism so beautifully that the fantasy elements were very realistic yet is presented in a way that reminds me of a fairy tale in its purest form. I quite enjoyed how the stories the three generations of the Lavender family interwove through each other and allowed us to see the wonderful character development and helps us really get to know the characters and took us on the journey of feeling empathy for them and pretty much went through the same emotions whilst reading. These powerful female characters are very visceral, they love and they hurt and go through the pain of life just like we do. Wanton's writing flows and her beautiful prose is very thought provoking and extremely quotable. Although this book is quite magical and enchanting there are some very dark aspects and as the title implies sorrowful and sad, this is a read that definitely stirs emotions. Overall I really would suggest anyone to read this magical, unique and heartbreaking tale. When I read this I gave it a 4/5 stars, but this book and story it told has lingered with me and I seriously have not been able to stop thinking about it, my emotions provoked by this novel are still warring inside me, a seriously unusually fantastic book. If you've read it let me know your thoughts in the comments.

Annelise xoxo

Thursday, June 12, 2014

A Game Of Thrones by George R.R. Martin Review

Hey everyone!

I know I was late on the bandwagon to begin this monstrous high fantasy series, but after watching and absolutely loving the TV show, I convinced myself to finally pick up the first book and pay no attention to the intimidating large number of pages. All I can say is thank god I gave it a chance and read A Game Of Thrones by George R.R. Martin. I must say though this is a very hard book to review as the plot line is very complicated to talk about as there is multi character perspectives and new story lines with every chapter, which was a feature I quite enjoyed. Obviously there are some characters that I enjoyed more than often, I would say Jon Snow's and Daenerys' chapters were by far my favourite as they involved a lot of suspense and mystery within them that kept me on the edge of my chair the entire time wanting to flick through to their next chapter.  This obviously wasn't going to be a quick read but the action and drama was kept up throughout the entire book making this 700 page monster just fly by. Although there were a few times throughout the book where it dragged on a bit and I thought could be made shorter or picked up a faster pace to keep us even more entertained.

This book is an epic, action - packed read full of twists and turns the entire way continually surprising us as it went on. There is so much drama that goes on throughout the novel which could possibly be overwhelming but really makes for a more entertaining read. You might have to read this at a slower pace to take in the immense detail that is put in to the characters and world. Each character is portrayed brilliantly, the features and realistic emotions make you feel for the characters yet sometimes changing our perspective on them which I noticed happened quite a bit. The way this novel is written with the eight different perspectives could at first be confusing but the way the characters lives intertwine with each other  throughout each chapter is really done quite well and doesn't leave you feeling like you can't understand what's happening.

For any medieval history fanatic this is definitely a novel for you, with the knights and ladies in waiting very much playing a dominant and fascinating part in this book, the overall war which is seen throughout the novel is very much based on and inspired by The War Of Roses and The Hundred Year War of the medieval times. I really enjoyed the fact the fantasy elements are only minimal yet subtly worked into the plot line making the world a lot more realistic and increasing the shocking awe when it is used. Martin's writing ability captures and recreates this complex story vividly in my mind with beautiful phrasing and sweeping passages that creates a world so entertaining and catastrophically real.

This dark and twisted, epic, high fantasy read definitely leaves you wanting for more and hopefully after rating A Game Of Thrones 5/5 stars, the next book in the series which I will pick soon will be just as good.

Annelise xoxo

Monday, June 2, 2014

May Wrap-Up & June TBR

Hey everyone!

Here is the month of May's wrap up, last month I read a total of eight books and one graphic novel, which is a pretty fair effort considering the amount of school work piling up. Without further ado here are the titles I read.

First I read Wasted: A Memoir Of Anorexia and Bulimia by Marya Hornbacher, which I gave a 4/5 stars and was a pretty interesting read considering the dark nature of this book.

I then pick up Make Good Art by Neil Gaiman, this short speech Neil Gaiman gave was both inspiring and entertaining and definitely makes me want to produce more creative projects and take into account his fantastic advice. I gave this a huge 5/5 stars.

Love & Misadventure by Lang Leav, was a short poetry book with cute and quirky poems which I would definitely recommend as they are easy to understand, also a 5/5 read.

Prozac Nation by Elizabeth Wurtzel was another dark read with a different perspective of depression and the life one leads with it, sometimes a little boring but still a good book. This was a 3/5 star read.

Psychos by Babe Walker is the sequel to White Girl Problems this hilarious book was a fantastic continuation of the series, a must read for those who love a little humour every now and again. I gave this 5/5 stars.

I already did a review on the next two books so make sure you check them out, they are Damned by Chuck Palahnuik which I gave 4/5 stars and Mr Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan which I gave 5/5 stars.

Saga Vol. 1 by Brian K. Vaughan & Fiona Staples was my first graphic novel I've ever read and I really really enjoyed this, the fantasy elements made it extremely entertaining. Another 5/5 stars.

A Game Of Thrones by George R.R. Martin was just as amazing and complex as I expected it to be, the hype surrounding both the book and TV adaptation is worth it. I will so do a review on this book, but I gave it a 5/5 star rating.

For the month of June there are a few books that I know I want to get through but I will pick up other books depending on how I feel, for this month I definitely want to read:

The Strange And Beautiful Sorrows Of Ava Lavender by Leslye Walton
A City Of Heavenly Fire by Cassandra Clare
Impulse by Ellen Hopkins
Alice In Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler

So I hope you guys enjoyed this monthly wrap up, let me know in the comments section what books you plan to read this month, maybe we can even have a read along. Stay tuned for some book reviews coming up. Also if theres any tags you want me to do let me know. :)

Annelise xoxo

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Book Cake Tag

Hey guys!

Today I will be doing the Book Cake Tag, I saw this tag done by a few book tubers and thought I would give it a go. 

1. Flour - A book that was a little bit slow to start off but really picked up as it went along

For this one I know a lot of people would have to disagree but I'm going to choose A Game Of Thrones by George R.R. Martin. I originally picked this book up at the beginning of this year and had a really hard time getting into it, but I recently tried again and was definitely glad that I did, what an amazing book with such a complex story line.

2. Butter - A book that had a really rich and great plot

This one I have to give it to the Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, this book was like no other and I absolutely loved it, the plot line was very unique and extremely engaging. This will continue to be one of my favourite books of all time. 

3. Eggs - A book that you thought was going to be bad but actually turned out quite enjoyable

 This would definitely have to go to Pushing The Limits by Katie McGarry, I read this book when it first came out and I wasn't really that interested in it but after getting into it I really loved it, just like so many other people I know do. 

4. Sugar - A sweet book

I had a hard time choosing just one for this one but I gave it to Love & Misadventure by Lang Leav, this is a short poetry book mainly focusing around love, these simple to understand poems were so cute and definitely sweet.

5. Icing - A book that covered every single element that you enjoy about a book (funny moments, action moments, sad moments, etc.)

Of course The Harry Potter Series by J.K Rowling, had to be mentioned at least once. Is there anymore to say, this series is dear to my heart and has everything I want in a book, just simply amazing.

6) Sprinkles - A book series that you can kind of turn to for a little pick me up when you're feeling down

This one goes to the Angus, Thongs & Perfect Snogging Series by Louise Rennison, these books are only short and very light hearted and enjoyable. This series is extremely relatable and the awkward teenage moments are exactly what you need for a good laugh. 

7) The cherry on top - Your favorite book this year so far

My favourite book this year is definitely The Book Thief by Markus Zusak, what more can I say. This book is loved by all and is so well written, really pulling at the heart strings. This was one emotional ride which was definitely worth it.

Thats it friends, let me know in the comments what you would choose for each of these questions. Hope you enjoyed and I'll see you all later.

Annelise xoxo