Tuesday, 30 August 2016

Words in Deep Blue Blog Tour /// 5 Things I loved about Words In Deep Blue


Happy Book Birthday to a #LoveOzYA book! Words in Deep Blue by Cath Crowley! 

I am lucky enough to be included in the blog tour & TO KICK IT OFF (aka start)! Thankyou so much Pan Macmillan for including me & organising this tour.

Without further ado here are:
(please excuse the amateur graphic, I am learning)


In no particular order:

1. This book, includes books.
The bookish references in this book were on point! I MEAN THERE WERE JOHN GREEN & various other Aussie authors. AHHHH I can't tell you how much I loved that there was a bookshop involved in this book. Honestly probably one of my favourite aspects of the book. Ahhh and I mean THE LETTER LIBRARY. (A library in the bookshop where you could read a book, annotate it/write messages to someone and leave it/put it back in the library for someone else to see/read.) What a brilliant creation.

2. The characters (ESPECIALLY George & Harry)
Agh I loved Harry. This could've been because his family owns this bookshop, Or because he's so damn cute and gorgeous. I loved his family and especially George (who's his sister) She's so emo but has such a beautiful personality. These two characters were my favourites of the books.

3. The metaphors & descriptions
Cath Crowley's writing style is absoloutley beautiful. I can't remember what she described but she used the term 'milk gold' and I just fell in love. Her describing words and metaphors and just beautiful and so unique. She also doesn't reuse descriptions which I was so happy about! 

4. Australian Cafe Scene
Okay so this is more something that would appeal to a foodie like myself but NOT ONLY IS THERE A BOOKSHOP, BUT THERE'S A CAFE. It sells danishes and I was just happy because Australian food and cafes are seriously the best and there was one included so yes. Basically there is coffee & danishes involved so yeah, if your a foodie....this book includes some good cafe goodness. Also, the cafe backs on to the bookshop so two for the price of one. 

5. Messages from The Letter Library & Poetry
I loved how there was not only writing, but also letters and poetry mixed in to the novel. I really loved reading the various letters from the Letter Library that included! Not only letters, but poetry is a big thing in this book. Which I really enjoyed seeing in YA. Poetry isn't really mentioned too much in YA. I really enjoyed how this book tried to break the stereotype of poetry = geekiness because I think this needs to stop. I was so happy to see poetry included and in relation to teens.

So that's why I loved Words in Deep Blue. 


Thanks again for having me on the tour Pan Macmillan & Cath Crowley. Make sure you have a look at some of the other stops on the tour.

Let me know if you've read this one, or if you are going to read this in the comments below! 

Saturday, 27 August 2016

Russian Pastries & Quirky Magic in The Crowns Game

The Crown's Game is an incredible book that I love to bits!  


This book is so beautiful! I loved it so much! This book had me crying, drooling and smiling SO HARD!




The Crown's Game by Evelyn Skye

Published by Harper Collins Australia 
Imprint is Harper Collins-US
Published in July 2016
Aus RRP: $19.99
YA Fantasy 


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. 

Thankyou SO much to Harper Collins Australia for sending me an ARC for review! This doesn't effect my opinion.

I loved this book. 
I feel like this review is going to be one of the very few raves because this is how this book had been travelling 

////

1st Stage: OVERHYPE
Everyone: THIS BOOK IS THE BEST DSHHDSHVD

2nd Stage: THIS BOOK IS WAY TOO OVERHYPED 
Everyone: I didn't like this book at all

My stage: I LOVED THIS BOOK
Everyone: (I don't know yet)

Yeah back to I loved this book. So, it's really a fluffy, magical story. 
There's been a lot of people saying that they don't like this book because it isn't as "sit on the edge of your seat" like. Sure, this book doesn't have that do or die feel that was promoted but I still loved it all the same. Sometimes it's nice to have a break!


The magic was so unique in this book.
The way that Vika and Nikolai used their magic in the game was truly beautiful. They didn't use their magic to kill each other. They used it to create something to better their city and it was so quirky and JUST SO GORGEOUS! Everything from visions to glass bakeries with magic pastries that fly Vika and Nikolai showed off their skills without the need to murder one another which I appreciated.


Ok so we have some tropes....but they work? Also, talk on characters.

We have the love triangle. But it works. Seriously, really enjoyable to read about who would win fair Vika (she would literally hurt me if she heard me call her fair Vika, oh well)  Pasha and Nikolai had such an interesting friendship, and damn their conversations got interesting when they talked about Vika.


Also, Vika was superb. Seriously, she had this incredible magical power and yet she still had all of the feelings of a normal person. She wasn't a hero. She was a person, who went through emotions. Felt horrible, felt vengeful, felt sad. 



Nikolai was charming and ends up using his magic for one of the most beautiful things ever! MOST SELFLESS PERSON EVER BY THE WAY!! 



Finally a fantasy setting that I understand! 

All that needs to be said is that this setting MADE SENSE. AND WAS DESCRIBED WELL AND THOROUGHLY! Also....there's a certain scene in a tree with wooden stalactites and oh my gosh it's the most beautiful scene!


The game is so gorgeous!

Ok it's not the bloodthirsty game everyone wanted. But the UNIQUENESS OF THE MAGIC IN THIS BOOK. Please just read it. The author has put in so much work in to creating these one-of-a-kind magic acts that honestly blew me away! Don't get me wrong I love bloodthirst.....but I also like a break. I like a light fantasy. AND THIS BOOK NAILED THAT!


My only complaint: The lack of detail when it came to Russian history/war.

This wasn't really explained at all/very well. So I had to take it to google. I didn't really understand the war and the two rival countries...so I kind of got confused. But this was only minor and only slightly made a difference to the plot.

Bits & Bobs:

  • Some great descriptions in this book. Metaphors are on point! I think someone's hair is described as like peaks of torched meringue. I MEAN C'MON! (Also kind of love food....)
  • Listen to this quote out of the book: 'A series of steps unfolded like an accordian made of paper' THAT IS GOOD WRITING FOR YOU!
  • THE FOOD REFERENCES. There is basically a whole bakery in this book. Including magical sweets. That fly. Attached to strings like balloons. I know. Read it.
  • Croissant references 
  • Pistachio curd and fig jam macarons are involved.
  • I have a kind of addiction to books that feature glass blowers/blowing. Yes, this book includes them. 
  • ALSO, CAN I PLEASE HAVE SOME OF THAT RUSSIAN BREAD
  • Oh and did I mention there is a BAKERY IN THIS BOOK? Well yeah there is.
  • There is a scene where one of the enchanters is making paper lanterns through magic. It is explained perfectly and I understood EVERYTHING! Plus it was a beautiful scene!
  • Also, all Russian references are explained in the actual story, so that you didn't have to look back in a glossary! 
  • All the parties had a gypsy-hippie vibe. (Cushions, tents etc) which I liked.  



Julia x

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

The Leaving is so Uniquely Haunting it chills you (Review)

Do not read The Leaving at night. You will regret it.

The Leaving
The Leaving by Tara Altebrano
Published by Bloomsbury Australia
Imprint is Bloomsbury Childrens 
Published in June 2016
Aus RRP: $17.99
YA Thriller/Mystery  


Eleven years ago, six five-year-olds went missing without a trace. After all this time, the people left behind have moved on, or tried to. Until today. Now five of those kids are back. They're sixteen, and they are ... fine. Scarlett comes home and finds a mother she barely recognises, and doesn't really know who she's supposed to be, either. But she remembers Lucas. Lucas remembers Scarlett, too, but they can't recall where they've been or what happened to them. Neither of them remember the sixth victim, Max. He doesn't come back and everyone wants answers. 



Thankyou SO much to Bloomsbury Australia for sending me an ARC for review! This doesn't effect my opinion.

So I liked this book....so much so that I read it until late at night....which I then struggled to get back to bed because it's so SCARY. 

The idea for this book is seriously awesome. I mean six kids, taken away and then a few years later ONLY FIVE OF THEM COME BACK! To say that I was excited to pick this book up would be an understatement. For the most part I loved this book! 

I loved the focus on memory and phycology.
 Since none of the characters could remember anything from the time of their disappearance (apart from creepy jumbled memories of things  like carousels) There was a strong focus on memory and why memories disappear! It was a really interesting part of the plot, and was explained really well to me as a reader!

The plot was quirky and the ending was so frighteningly great.
So the story kept me up at night. Literally. Especially since NO ONE REMEMBERED ANYTHING...and also where was THAT OTHER BOY?! The plot was well paced and the chapters were short and sharp. It was so interesting trying to find out what happened to these kids and it was kind of like the reader is trying to piece everything, all the clues, together faster than the story! THE ENDING WAS EVERYTHING. IT GOES TOO FAST FOR MY LIKING THOUGH! SO MANY PLOT TWISTS! Also can I tell you that you do get answers. 

It's not a case of 'Oh well your safe now so it doesn't matter' YOU ACTUALLY FIND OUT WHAT HAPPENS!


The characters were a (mostly) yay the romance was a nay.
I really liked all of the characters apart from Avery. Avery was the sister of the boy who didn't come back. Lucas & Scarlett were both victims of this abduction and they both had P.O.V's which were really enjoyable to read from. Especially since their text was laid out in a unique way to them, and how their thoughts and disjointed memories came back to them. It was so interesting to see them try and conjure memories and hear from their perspective what they thought happened. 

I dreaded the chapters from Avery's P.O.V. She was so whiny. She just complained for no reason She needed to be centre of attention all of time. Also she pretty much whined about everything APART FROM HER BROTHER. She complained about acting and her boyfriend and kind of wasn't needed at all. I could've done without her there. In fact, I think I would've enjoyed the book more without her.

She was also the reason why I was a major NO with the romance. I just didn't get why she was falling in love with a character who she literally met 2 days after he got back from being ABDUCTED. It's not really that either, it's that she was LITERALLY TRYING TO GET ALL OF HIS ATTENTION! I mean he had bigger things to think about than Avery. Jeeezz. Ugh if only I could tell Avery not everything is about her.


Bits & Bobs:

  • I really enjoyed the ending and it was completely unexpected for me. The only part I didn't particularly like was the romance but sometimes you can't have it all.
  • The formatting for Scarlet & Lucas' point of views was so great read from. Especially since they were formatted to be like the thoughts/scenes that kept on popping up in their minds.
  • Also on those scenes. All of the thoughts about the carousel and the hot air balloons that was really creepy and intriguing. And annoyingly impossible to piece together (yes this is also resolved at the end)

Overall, I highly recommend reading this book! It's creepy and I recommend passing up night-time reads with this book. Read it for the plot, not the romance, so that you'll get maximum enjoyment out of this book.

.5
Julia x



Thursday, 18 August 2016

Finally an Australian Book Tag #AussieBookTag

So I plugged this a few days ago! But basically me and Ngoc collaborated & made a book tag. An Australian based one with Aussie questions! Enjoyyyy & Thanks to everyone who signed up to get tagged (and good luck to the people I tagged because I think they're great)

Here are the questions and my answers...

Koala: A character you want to cuddle ALL DAY LONG
Oh I know this one alright. Clark from The Unexpected Everything. Not to steal him from Andie. Just to hug him, and tell him that he is one of the best characters ever invented and just thank him for being the best fiction boyfriend for Andie.


Vegemite: A book you love that everyone else hates
The Crowns Game. I don't know why all of a sudden everyone has turned on this book. It was overhyped. And then it wasn't and now everyone hates this book. Well, I loved it. I have written a review for this book which will be up soon. In which I rave about it!

Socceroos: Favourite fictional squad
Ahhh there's so many!!!

Let me make a list:

-Nevernight Squad (Shaiid's) because those teachers are seriously boss as!
-Their Fractured Light Squad because seriously hackers, military personal & CON ARTISTS ARE YOU KIDDING ME?
-The Lunar Chronicles- That mismatched fairytale squad have some serious attitude!
-A Court of Mist and Fury- Honestly, do I need to say anything here.
-That squad of The Unexpected Everything girls are pretty damn goals for a contemporary book!

Southern cross: Most recent 5-star read
The Unexpected Everything this book lived up to the hype and is a serious must read for contemporary and any READER! Seriously loved it and it contains one of the most brilliant characters to ever exist: Clark. 

Patriotism: Favourite book by an author from your country
Isn't it obvious. I have so many loves. Another list? Sounds good!
- The Yearbook Committee
-Yellow
-The Things I Didn't Say
-Nona and Me
-Writing Clementine
-The Starbound Trilogy (This counts right? Half Aussie)

Echidna: A book you like to look at, but it physically hurts to read.

Can I say everything above ^^? Excluding all of the books up there, Definitely Whisper to Me by Nick Lake. That book with it's damn ending is painfully beautiful to read!
Ned Kelly: A book that is really grim, but an iconic must-read.

Hmmmm how about Nevernight. Also by Jay Kristoff an Aussie Author! Really super grim but PLEASE READ. Need more convincing? I wrote a review for YOU here!

Great Barrier Reef: A book that had you gaping in awe
This Shattered World. This book was amazing! It had me gaping in awe because I DIDN'T LIKE BOOK 1! I think I might have to re-read book 1 because This Shattered World got 5 Stars and I just finished book 3 which got 4 Stars!

Pavlova: A light, and fluffy book that you can’t help but love. (don't know what's with the book gif but I obviously wanted to include ponies just try and ignore it)
*Resists urge to say Unexpected Everything again because I have said that to basically every single question* I'm finding it hard to say a book that's just fluffy and doesn't get too deep. Maybe, Jenny Han books are always good! But even sometimes they can stray away from the fluffy genre! ARHHH I think I just read a lot of books that include disastrous situations.



Milo: A genre/author you reach for to get you out of a reading slump
CONTEMPORARY BOOKS! High fantasy novels or fantasy generally put me in a slump, so naturally I read contemporary to get me back! I love contemporaries so much!

*When I'm in a slump*
Contemporaries:

 You've been Tagged:
Aussie Bookish Friends Chat: DanielleBec, SamNatLissaMolly, Aentee, Casey, Steph & Sarah anyone from that chat I missed.

Also...

Can't wait to see your posts! Tag them with #AussieBookTag to let us know you are doing the tag! Tag others after you have done the tag!!! 

Make sure to check out Ngoc's video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vrgw4RQywtE

And her Twitter: https://twitter.com/happycomesf1rst 


Monday, 15 August 2016

The reason I say 'Yestereve' instead of 'Yesterday' (Nevernight Review)

(Before I start, referring to the title, I completely blame the above occurrences on Jay Kristoff)

So #stabstabstab #romance #death #assassins #fantasy 
Kind of sums this up but yeah no there's more to this book than that, let's break this book down.

Nevernight by Jay Kristoff
Published by Harper Collins Australia 
Imprint is Harper Voyager
Published in July 2016
Aus RRP: $29.99
YA Fantasy 




Destined to destroy empires, Mia Corvere 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 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 daemons at the heart of a murder cult.The Red Church is no ordinary school, but Mia is no ordinary student.The shadows love her. And they drink her fear.

Thankyou SO much to Harper Collins Australia for sending me an ARC for review! This doesn't effect my opinion.

So I will be honest. I seriously couldn't get in to this book at the start.

Why you may ask? For four reasons:

1. I couldn't get my head around the language.
2. The Setting was just overall confusing.
3. The magic
4. The italicized text...

All of this combined had me thinking this wasn't a book for me. But, let me tell you that this book redeems itself. Let me convince you how two of these points turned around for me.

I came to love the language. Sure, it's hard to start with, but eventually you come to love it. Like adore it. The way Jay writes seriously added some much character to this book. As you can tell by the title, I never quite got over the yestereve thing. I mean how beautiful is that? 

Also, point four was redeemed. Yes, this had a major effect on my enjoyment of the book. I had no idea at the start whether or not if was past, present OR WHO IT WAS. Trust me though, You will find out. Just thought I should post that especially since I am one of those people who had to message their friend and be like WHO IS THIS? 

As much as I would love to tell you that the points two and three were resolved, they weren't and I am hopefully they will be in book two because they are my only criticisms. BUT WILL GET TO THAT STUFF LATER!

The characters are so badass.
Mia is so awesome. I loved how she had a shadow cat who ate her shadows (named Mr.Kindly) I loved this because she could be so confident and not worry AND DO THINGS WITHOUT HAVING TO BE SCARED and she wasn't heroic or immune to anxiety SHE HAD A CAT EATING HER WORRIES. Also, she is so sarcastic and hilarious. AHhh if I could just meet this girl! 

Tric....Tricky..... What to say about you? 

Internal Dialogue:
Me: This is meant to be non-spoiler don't talk about him.
Me: But I love him.
Me: What would you say without spoilering
Me: Fair point

So yeah, all I'm going to say is that Tric. I like you. A lot.

The Shahiids & Chronicler are seriously the best things ever.
WHY MUST THIS REVIEW BE NON-SPOILER?! I COULD SAY SO MUCH.....*calms down* BECAUSE I WANT YOU GUYS TO READ THIS! THAT'S WHY! If you've read this you know how AWESOME THE SHAHIDDS ARE! 


So first things first: Setting Wise. Two things:
1. I was confused with setting outside of The Red Church (the assassin school)
2.  Utterly loved the setting inside The Red Church.

To say I was confused with the setting outside of The Red Church would be an understatement. I had no idea what 'The Spine' was and what certain piazza's looked like. I understand that I had an ARC of this book, and I think there are some maps in the finished copy? Anyway, I really needed a bit more explanation of what 'The Spine' and 'The Ribs' were. Also: A certain piazza is used in this book and is VERY important, I had no idea what it looked like apart from that it had scaffolding...just a little more description. 

The setting inside the Red Church was great. Could clearly see all of the halls, libraries & loved the way that the halls and stairs changed everytime you walked in them! Seriously awesome stuff! ++++Creepy statues & WINDOWS WITH LIGHT COMING THROUGH WHEN THEY ARE IN A MOUNTAIN! 

The only other criticism I have is the undeveloped magic system.
We hear about some magical beasts living out in the desert and they are able to attack humans by coming out of the ground?? I was just kind of confused because this is the only reference to magic in this book...and it wasn't really introduced properly. It was kind of one time thing. But I think this might be in book two. 

But overall two things I didn't like and a whole bucket of things I liked! 

Bits & Bobs: 
  • Book worms are literally the best thing ever. (Read the book = get the reference) 
  • The library is awesome! I seriously loved it! GET LOST IN THAT LIBRARY! 
  • Let's say there is a portal and it involves bacon. GREAT IDEA!!! SO UNIQUE!
  • OK SO THE ENDING SERIOUSLY....WHAT? WHY? JAY?????????? 
Definitely recommend for those who love romance & epic fantasy, especially with badass characters! Warning: you may begin to call yesterday, yestereve but minor loss for this book, right?


.5 
Julia x


Sunday, 14 August 2016

Aussie Book Tag (Original) Signups!

Me: I created a book tag.
Person: What was that?
Me: I created a book tag.
Person: SPEAK UP
Me: I created a book tag.

Yes, it's true. I created a book tag with one of my lovely friends Ngoc @ Happy Comes First!
Let's just say we decided it's about time AUSTRALIA had it's own bookish tag. 
And this is DIFFERENT to the blog hop I just participated in (which was also awesome and I'm sorry if this is confusing)

Btw...join in the Twitter Chat for the blog hop tonight! I will be there...
Ngoc and I had been planning this for a little while and it just managed to be at the same time as this hop. Which kind of works well! YAY AUSSIES!

Anyway, this is a tag! And this is a post to let you know that you can sign up to get tagged by the creators of this tag! 

Here are the questions!

Koala: A character you want to cuddle ALL DAY LONG
Vegemite: A book you love that everyone else hates
Socceroos: Favourite fictional squad
Southern cross: Most recent 5-star read
Patriotism: Favourite book by an author from your country
Echidna: A book you like to look at, but it physically hurts to read.
Ned Kelly: A book that is really grim, but an iconic must-read.
Great Barrier Reef: A book that had you gaping in awe
Pavlova: A light, and fluffy book that you can’t help but love.
Milo: A genre/author you reach for to get you out of a reading slump

Things to consider:

1. You can choose written anywhere, apart from any questions that specifically ask for the book to be written by an Australian author.

2. After you've done the tag, tag others get news around!

3. This tag can be done on bookstagram, youtube or a blog or anywhere!

4. Those who sign up to be tagged can officially start posting books from this Thursday until any time!

Everyone that signs up to be tagged will get an email from me with more details for when posts should go up etc on Tuesday/Wednesday!

My post will be up this Thursday. You are welcome to put up your post up any time ON OR AFTER Thursday or the week after or WHENEVER! You cannot post your tag before this Thursday!

Make sure to send us your posts if you do it! We would absoloutley love to see your answers! Tag us in your posts as well as using #AussieBookTag on Twitter & Instagram! We will be retweeting!

It would mean a lot to Ngoc & I if you sign up!! We are so excited to see everyone's posts!

Also...sorry for the lack of graphics for this one, I'm not really an expert at graphics (although would love to be)

Without further ado, here is the signup link:

Let me know if you sign up! Prepare those questions people!

THANKYOU!

Julia x