Posted in Reviews

Review: Red Rising by Pierce Brown

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The Book: Red Rising (Red Rising #1)
The Author: Pierce Brown (yum)
The Pages: 382
My Rating: 5/5 stars

The Earth is dying. Darrow is a Red, a miner in the interior of Mars. His mission is to extract enough precious elements to one day tame the surface of the planet and allow humans to live on it. The Reds are humanity’s last hope.

Or so it appears, until the day Darrow discovers it’s all a lie. That Mars has been habitable – and inhabited – for generations, by a class of people calling themselves the Golds. A class of people who look down on Darrow and his fellows as slave labour, to be exploited and worked to death without a second thought.

Until the day that Darrow, with the help of a mysterious group of rebels, disguises himself as a Gold and infiltrates their command school, intent on taking down his oppressors from the inside. But the command school is a battlefield – and Darrow isn’t the only student with an agenda.

Review

Red Rising was one of those books that everyone raved about back in 2014 when it came out, it was recommended a million times and had sat in my amazon wish-list practically since it was released. Im a bit wish-washy with my sci-fi, sometimes I love it (a la Ender’s Game) but sometimes I struggle to get into it, so this book kept getting pushed to the back bench of my TBR.

Eventually my wonderful Papa bought it for me for Christmas (along with some other exciting titles I missed from 2014) and so I thought fine then, get over here, you are finally gonna get well and truly read.

And oh gosh oh gosh oh gosh. Every. Single. Piece. Of. Hype. Was. Deserved.

The first line was just in your face epic, “I would have lived in peace. But my enemies brought me war.” –like okay Pierce, challenge accepted, go ahead, blow me away.
And he did, but not right away.

The first few pages of this book had me questioning the blogosphere’s sanity for hyping this up so much. It seemed like another typical dystopian and there was so much slang and jargon thrown at me I was struggling to make sense. I felt like I needed a dictionary.
However I persevered, determined to work out what all this bloodydamn slang meant, and oh I am so glad I did.

This book is unapologetically brutal, Pierce Brown does not hold back. There are surprises and plot twist strewn throughout and eventually you learn to expect the unexpected every time you turn a page. My goodreads updates as I was reading were all basically like this: “aaaaaaaagh no please no why do you do this?!”
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I’m not sure I can articulate my love for the characters of this book, (so please excuse the fangirl nonsense that is about to happen). Darrow is amazing, just like seriously wow. He’s not a whingey weak character who bitches and moans everytime their life gets hard. But he’s not super-human either, by which I mean he still struggles with the difficult decisions he has to make and his mistakes and regrets stay with him. But he doesn’t let them ruin him, he gets on with it, cheering for the underdog all the way. And he’s tough, my god he is tough. I’m not sure I could have done the things he did, no matter the reason. I admire him and I love everything about his character, his strengths as well as his faults (especially his rage, oooh my *fans self*).
The side characters are just as fantastic. Pierce is the kind of writer that makes me realise I could never write a book. He’s so talented. Every character was real to me, and every death left me reeling, I was that invested in these characters.
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Eo? Man that girl had spirit! She’s the type of character that I’d want as a sister, or maybe a girlfriend, who knows? She’s that amazing.
And Sevro? AMAZING. I truly love this guy, how freakin’ cool is he?! I howl for you Sevro, AAAAOOOOO!

This is YA, Dystopian sci-fi at its very best. Amazing characters, bloodydamn amazing world-building and enough plot twists to give you whiplash.

This book had me up till 4am just to finish it because I literally could not put it down. It’s left me with a serious book hangover that has me craving the next book with the same ferocity I crave my morning coffee.
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I’m speechless, it was epic and I’m not sure how I’m ever going to read another book because how is it ever going to compare to Red Rising?

Pierce Brown may be a literary wizard but one thing is for sure, if you have not read this book GO GO GO AND READ IT RIGHT THIS SECOND NOW PLEASE.

(what are you waiting for? Get out now and go read!)

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Posted in Events, Posts/Features, Uncategorized

HAPPY HALLOWEEN

Guys and gals! ITS HALLOWEEN YAAAAAAAY. My favourite bloggy holiday!

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BOO!

muhahahhhahahahahaaaaa. (I’m blatantly the most terrifying thing ever)

I’m not doing anything for Halloween this year, even though it’s my first Halloween being 18¬†*plays small violin*. Instead I’m sitting in watching scary films and eating snacks with my pal (even tho she doesn’t like scary films, muahahah I’m evil). So not all bad! ūüėÄ

So for my Halloween post this year I’m doing a witchy brew of Halloween favourites.

First into the bloggy cauldron is…

(BOO)KS

Give me witches, give me werewolves and vampires, give me demons and ghosts… ALL THE SPOOKS!

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So, what are some great halloweeny books??

For witches, Id have to say Heir of Fire! It’s not exactly a scary book but the witches in it are FRIGGIN FANTASTIC! Yay for you Sarah J. Maas! Yay for you! Also there’s the fabulous Harry Potter books! Witches and wizards galore! And also a book I’ve read recently is The Unexpected Enlightenment of Rachel Griffin! It’s been described as Harry Potter meets Narnia, it’s adorable and a great read (review here, an the second book review is coming soon promise!)
(I haven’t read many witchy books! Let me know anymore in the comments and I’ll add them!)

For Werewolves, It’s have to be Darren Shans Demonata series. Oh my life do I just LOVE his books! And that series is AWESOME. It’s kind of Demons and Magicians but also WEREWOLVES, especially the first book. It’s intense and scary and just all around SPOOKTASTIC.¬†(Actually I’ve excited myself too much and I’m gonna go read it now). And ofc if your after less scary, more romance, there is the awesome trilogy¬†by Maggie Stiefvater: Shiver, Linger and Forever.
(Again, please tell me more as my list is pretty short aha!)

For Vampires, I’m thinking The Vampire Academy series (which I haven’t started yet but everyone seems to LOVE). Ooh, and The Hunt by Andrew Fukuda, it’s a little different to the usual vampire books, it took me a while to get into it but it’s actually really enjoyable. Also Darren Shan’s ‘The Saga of Darren Shan’ is vampires and its soooooo good!

For Zombies, I just loved The Enemy Series by Charlie Higson, ooooh its so good! Then theres’ Darren Shan’s Zom-B series (which I haven’t gotten around to yet! Bad Emily!). I think The Girl with all the Gifts is a zombie book, and supposedly really really good aswell! And ooh! A favourite of¬†mine The Forest of Hands and Teeth trilogy by Carrie Ryan! READ IT READ IT NOW.

Other creepiness, such as The Chronicles of Anceint Darkness by Michelle Paver. Creepy demon bears in an ancient forest. Such an imaginative series, loved it loved it loved it. My dad recommended The Stand by Stephen King sounds super scary, as you would expect from Stephen King.
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Next into the bloggy cauldron would have to be

Spooktacular Filmssssss

I love love love horror films, they’re my absolute favourite. I love being scared. Zombies are the best, and I love abit of gore. Here’s some of my favourites;

28 Days Later / 28 Weeks Later (zombies zombies zombies)

The Happening (just plain creepy)

Silent Hill (creepy ghost town, and fantastic monsters)

Darkness Falls (creepy toothfairy)

Nightmare on Elm Street (LOVE ‘EM)

Underworld (vampires, werewolves, kick-ass)

The third must into the bloggy cauldron issssss

Halloween parties/costumes/and foooooood

and you know general excitement

My friend made creepy cakes ūüėÄ how great are they, nom nom nom nom,
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Here’s some other awesome haloween food ideas
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And creep-tastic decorations, costumes and fun?
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6a0133f30ae399970b019b0008ab94970b-pi b2443a5f5c9e1c94db17e58f10bae119 Plush-LOTR-Halfling-Slippers picture-of-baby-pumpkin-halloween-costume-photoAnd the final (secret) ingredient is…

ALL THE WONDERFUL BLOGGY EXCITEMENT AND POSTS

here’s some of my favourite posts,,

Publikworks: Boooooooooo

The Girl in Question: The Halloween opt-out

Brin’s Book Blog: Vintage YA Book Recommendations

Anibundel: Tardis Pumpkin

That’s all I have time for! If you have anything you thinks should be added let me know and I’ll add it!

HAPPY HALLOWEEEN, have a great day/night!

BOO.

Posted in Posts/Features

Is there a blogger naughty step?

(Sorry!)
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and I’m sorry that I haven’t posted at all the last few days (or e-mailed). I’m having some health issues at the moment and I’m just in no state to be updating the blog. I’m currently in a little reprieve hence I’m writing this post, and I promise if I get another soon I’ll schedule some posts even if it’s just one or two a week.

And I’m really sorry to the couple of people who I said I’d post certain things this week, I hope you understand and I pinky promise to get them up asap.

So basically I’ve been an awful blogger for not posting, and especially for not having some scheduled posts ready for times like this. What I need is the super-nanny of the blogosphere to put me on a virtual naughty step until I learn my lesson about scheduling.

But until then, I’m keeping it low-key and trying not to make myself worse by stressing over posts when I already feel awful.

I’m really upset about not being able to put all my scattered Halloween¬†drafts into actual posts. Halloween is such a great time in the blogosphere, I love how excited everyone gets and all the brilliant posts and features that pop up.

I’ll post as an when I can, see you soon!¬†¬†¬†x x

Posted in Discussion, Rambling with Em

Rambling with Em: #HaleNo

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So if you’ve been on Twitter you’ll have most likely¬†seen the #HaleNo hashtag. and already know what it’s all about. If not, I’ll briefly go over what happened.

So there’s and author, Kathleen Hale, and a few bloggers have read her book pre-release. (all normal so far) Some bloggers loved it, some hated it. (as that is how it works) Some negative reviews were posted. One in particular caught KH’s attention and despite knowing she shouldn’t read and interact with negative reviews (good advice for all authors,¬†don’t go there)¬†she decided to. She then went on to stalk the reviewers social networks, research her to the level of obsession on the internet and then get her address under false pretences and WENT TO HER HOUSE, also rang her at work twice! She then published a personal essay all about her stalking in the guardian. (Link here)

Bloggers and reviewers everywhere are appalled and so started the hashtag #HaleNo to show that this is not okay.

You have to understand from the authors point of view and maybe even feel abit sorry for her, I know I did at first. She’s poured her heart and soul into her book and seeing people critique it has got to be painful.
But, that’s where my sympathy ends.

Every book will get negative reviews, every book. And as an author you have to know this. You either have to be strong enough to let them go over your head or just avoid reading them. I mean come on, some people don’t like the Harry Potter books! That’s just life!
Also, remember that when a reviewer dislikes your book (however strongly) it is still your book they’re critiquing, not you. It’s not bullying to say you hated a book, even if you… swear! (oh no dear god no swearing). GASP.

Swearing just helps get your point across, whether I’m saying “this book was fucking awful” or “OMG I FUCKING LOVED THIS BOOK”.
The swearing example really helps show¬†how¬†book reviewing¬†works. You want passionate reviews? Well you have to take the good with the bad. That’s just how it is.

As for responding to bad reviews… The best advice? Don’t. Just don’t do it.
But say you have to, you just have to, or you shall explode, just comment. ONE comment, ‘sorry you didn’t enjoy the book’ maybe ask what they think you could’ve changed to improve it. But the key with this is not to reply again. Just read it and move on, this stops you from getting into an argument. If you’re an author then you must always be professional, writing is your job.

Now, from the reviewers side, they did nothing wrong. Blogging is a hobby, not a job. We are not professional reviewers, we are just people sharing our opinions and passions with eachother. We are readers, the book was written for us and we are allowed to share our opinions (good or bad). We are also entitled to continue our hobby without fear. The reviewer that KH stalked has withdrawn from blogging as she is scared. She posted a negative review, as is her right, and the author turned up at her house and called her at work accusing her of being a catfish. She isn’t a catfish. She uses a pseudonym as many bloggers do.

A catfish is a person who adopts a fictional persona with the intent to lure someone into a relationship of some sort. The reviewer was under no obligation to use her real name. She could be a 50 year old crazy cat lady pretending to be Dan the 15 year old¬†teen fiction addict. She wasn’t hurting anyone just reviewing books with her own opinion under a different name.
What KH did when she rang the reviewers work place pretending to be someone she wasn’t in order to trick info out of her was catfishing. And the way she lied to get ahold of her address was unacceptable, as was actually going to her address. This is stalking and will never be okay no matter how you try to justify it. KH wasn’t a victim of online bullying who tried to unmask her catfish. She is an author who reacted badly to a negative review and made a reviewer feel unsafe doing something they love.

The fact that the guardian published this confession of stalking in shocking especially publishing the reviewers name.

Alot of bloggers and goodreads members have black-listed her, they wont read or review her book or promote her in any way. I think this is an understandable reaction.
Now, I won’t be reading KH’s book. The main reason is because KH hasn’t even apologised or shown any real remorse for her mistake. She has tried to justify her actions and call anyone who disagrees a bully. So I wont be reading her book as a way of me expressing that it’s not acceptable. The book-blogging community wont just roll over and let her get away with it.

Had she done this in a ‘moment of madness’ and immediately apologised and seemed genuinely sorry, I honestly believe my opinion on whether or not to black-list her may have been different.

I wont be black-listing the authors who stood up for her because they’re entitled to their opinion as much as I am to mine. And I am not writing this post to convince you to black-list her or to insult KH in anyway. I’m just explaining and voicing my opinion on a situations that has massively affected bloggers everywhere.

The blogosphere and review communities like goodreads are friendly and loving communities. We come together when awful things like this happen and we really do want to have (and do have in many many cases) good relationships with authors. Share love, be honest and be passionate. Always. Love you guys.

Join the conversation on twitter with the hashtag #HaleNo or show your love for authors and bloggers alike with #AuthorYes or #authorbloggerlove

Extra:

(I particular enjoyed this articles written by Alex Hurst — check it out here)

Posted in meme, Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday: Mortal Heart

New WoWWaiting On Wednesday is a weekly Meme hosted over at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we are eagerly awaiting.

So this week I’m eagerly awaiting…… *drum roll* …….

Mortal Heart by Robin LaFevers!

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The third book in His Fair Assassin series, squeallllllll! I loved the first book, just starting the second (sometime this week hopefully) and so dying (get it?) to read this!¬†— pub date: November 4th

Posted in meme, Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: Top New Series I Want To Start

toptentuesdayTop Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted over at The Broke and the Bookish! And this week the theme is….. Top Ten New Series I Want To Start.

I’m super busy (and forgot to schedule this post in advance, so here I am typing away on a Monday night) so this will have to be a Top Five Tuesday for me. (doesn’t sound so good without the alliteration really).

ONE — Vampire Academy

Everyone raves about this series and I barely know what it’s about. I may have accidentally ordered it though… So will be starting it soon hopefully!

TWO — Daughter of Smoke and Bone

This is the series I always got confused with Leigh Bardugo’s Grisha series. No idea why… Anyway I’m definitely wanting to start this series, hope I love it as much as everyone else seems to!

THREE — Dangerous Girls

(and Dangerous Boys)

Not sure if this even counts as a series but it’s going on the list anyway (muhahahahaha). Some bloggers who I love have LOVED both these books and they do look fab fab fab, so yep, want to start!

FOUR — These Broken Stars

I think the series is called ‘Starbound’ as a whole, the next book is out this December I think… But I’m definitely gonna be reading this and hopefully the next book aswell! Yay Sci-Fi!

FIVE — His Fair Assassin

ooooooh I LOVED the first book Grave Mercy (my review here), and thought it’s not a new new series the third book is out this November so it’s new enough for me! Just bought the second book and cannot cannot wait for the third, COME ON NOVEMBER!

So that’s my top ten five for this week! What do you think? What other five do you think I should be dying to start?? x x

Posted in meme, Sunday Say-Again

Sunday Say-Again [3]

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This week’s been abit mad. Personal life is chaotic. I’ve got so much to read and review and hardly any time to do it. I’m also trying to prepare for NaNoWriMo. I’ve never been a big planner, preferring to just wing it and hope for the best. This year I want to get some minor preparation in before the first of November. That way I can concentrate on writing instead of research.

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Look how pretty the banner is! Anyway…

On the Blog This Week ūüôā

Monday~ Review: Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
Tuesday~ Top Ten Tuesday: Places Books Have Made Me Want To Travel
Wednesday~ Waiting On Wednesday: Red Queen
Thursday~ Review: Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo
Friday~ Quick Review: The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Saturday~ From the Archives: Review: The Unexpected Enlightenment of Rachel Griffin by L. Jagi Lamplighter

Favourite Finds ūüôā

blah blah ~ The Reality of Roger and Amy
Write me a book John! ~ Are Bookmarks Dead?