Sydney Writers’ Festival Book Haul

Guess where I was this weekend.

The title of this blog post sort of gave it away, but that doesn’t stop me from announcing it dramatically.

I was at SYDNEY WRITERS’ FESTIVAL!!!

I went with  Phoenix @ Books of Words 123 and we drove for a long time to get there, but it was so worth it!

We went to three events but this post is not about the events, it is about the books.

The book store sold all the books that the authors/publishers spoke about and books buy authors that were at the festival. At first, we couldn’t find the teen section, but when we found it, I was grabbing at books left, right and centre.

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I bought…

Akarnae by Lynette Noni

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The Last Star by Rick Yancy (two days before it was released!)

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Passenger by Alexandra Bracken

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Ruined by Amy Tintera

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After buying these books, we walked past the signed books section.

I saw two books that I had wanted for ages and pounced on them.

Give it to me!!

Those books were…

Raelia by Lynette Noni

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Front Lines by Michael Grant

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There you have it. All the books I bought a SWF.

Until next time,

~Melia

Book Review: Poison Study

General Information:

Pages: 407

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Romance

Series: Study series

Author: Maria V. Snyder

Publisher: Luna Fantasy

Source: Purchased

ISBN: 0778324338

Release Date: March 1st, 2007

Book Format: Paperback

Rating: 5 stars

Synopsis: Choose: A quick death…Or slow poison…

About to be executed for murder, Yelena is offered an extraordinary reprieve. She’ll eat the best meals, have rooms in the palace—and risk assassination by anyone trying to kill the Commander of Ixia.

And so Yelena chooses to become a food taster. But the chief of security, leaving nothing to chance, deliberately feeds her Butterfly’s Dust—and only by appearing for her daily antidote will she delay an agonizing death from the poison.

As Yelena tries to escape her new dilemma, disasters keep mounting. Rebels plot to seize Ixia and Yelena develops magical powers she can’t control. Her life is threatened again and choices must be made. But this time the outcomes aren’t so clear…

My Thoughts: Ha. Can one say that they loved a book so much that the reader almost imploded with love and desire for the next book? Yes, it is possible. Because this is exactly what happened to me whilst I was reading this book. At the end, I was a walking zombie, thanks to zero hours of sleep and the need for the next book.

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That was fun.

But, the stuff that annoys me about this book is…

  1. This book was very confusing at the end. I mean, suddenly ***** and ******? And ****? Honestly.
  2. The romance. YAY! At least it only comes to play massively at the end…

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I agree.

Things I adored about this book… (Brace yourselves.)

  1. The characters. They are real, and don’t try and deny it!
  2. The plot. Why can’t I come up with things like this? Maria V. Snyder is incredible!
  3. The ending. YAY! Cliffhanger. Adore that and all…

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Still, this book is incredible and now sits at the top of my ‘favourites’ bookshelf. It was hard finding a place.

Anyway,

Seyanora!

I am off to the bookshop for the next book, Magic Study.

~Laurena

Book Review: A Court of Mist and Fury

General Information:

Pages: 640

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Romance

Series: A Court of Mist and Fury (Book 2)

Author: Sarah J. Maas

Publisher: Bloomsbury

Source: Borrowed

ISBN: 9-781408-857885

Release Date: May 3rd, 2016

Book Format: Paperback

Rating: 4 stars

Synopsis: Feyre survived Amarantha’s clutches to return to the Spring Court—but at a steep cost. Though she now has the powers of the High Fae, her heart remains human, and it can’t forget the terrible deeds she performed to save Tamlin’s people.

Nor has Feyre forgotten her bargain with Rhysand, High Lord of the feared Night Court. As Feyre navigates its dark web of politics, passion, and dazzling power, a greater evil looms—and she might be key to stopping it. But only if she can harness her harrowing gifts, heal her fractured soul, and decide how she wishes to shape her future—and the future of a world cleaved in two.

My Thoughts: This was worse than A Court of Thorns and Roses in the romance section. Ladies and Gentlemen, prepare to gouge out your eyes. It is graphic! I virtually fainted, Melia almost vomited and Ally got one sentence in.

Please note: We don’t read graphic romance novels which is why we reacted so dramatically to the romance.

However, damn Sarah J. Maas’ genius, she writes so well and has such brilliant plots! This is why I didn’t throw the book down in the bin and storm off to Pennsylania to wash out her mouth with soap. (Sarah J. Maas, I will do it!) But still, damn her genius! And her cliff-hangers…

And now, Sarah J. Maas has made me (sort of) long for her third book in the series. Again, damn her incredible writing!

Me at the end of the book:

The ending made me want to scream. And gasp. And invent a time machine.

Ooooh! First gif! Celebrate!

All I can say is that Empire of Storms, Throne of Glass 5, had better not be as romantic as this… Or, Sarah J. Maas, I am coming for you!

But the cover is so pretty!

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Caption: A fight for her throne. A war against darkness.

Sooooooo pretty!

But enough fangirling. I liked this book and I plan to read the third one! But I am going to borrow it! And it won’t be an instant read, unlike Empire of Storms….

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This will be me when I get EoS and aCoMaF 3:

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Very distracted therefore giving up on this review,

~Laurena

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Book Review: Running Girl

General Information:

Pages: 434

Genre: Young Adult, Mystery

Series: Garvie Smith Mysteries

Author: Simon Mason

Publisher: David Fickling Books

Source: Purchased

ISBN: 9-78191-0200674

Release Date: January 2nd 2014

Book Format: Paperback

Rating: 5 stars

Synopsis: Meet Garvie Smith. Highest IQ ever recorded at Marsh Academy. Lowest ever grades. What’s the point, anyway? Life sucks. Nothing ever happens.

Until Chloe Dow’s body is pulled from a pond.

DI Singh is already on the case. Ambitious, uptight, methodical – he’s determined to solve the mystery and get promoted. He doesn’t need any ‘assistance’ from notorious slacker, Smith.

Or does he?

My Thoughts: This is not a cliche mystery book. This is so much more.

When you expect to read about a mystery book, you expect the detective to be an A+ student with perfect self-presentation and no bad habits. Garvie Smith is none of these things. Our famed protagonist has never gotten an A in his life, constantly in trouble with the police and his mother and he smokes.

But, maybe the above is what makes Garvie Smith Garvie Smith. And what makes this book the five star book I love.

This book will plunge you into the criminal world. Told from the perspective of a juvie with a mother with serious problems with his choice of friends, this book will never stop entrancing you.

With constant plot twists and shallow escapes from the police, this book is by far one of my favourite books I have read this year. Simon Mason, there had better be a sequel!

~Laurena

Book Tag: Harry Potter

We were tagged by Genie Reads. Thank you for tagging us!

THE QUESTIONS:

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A book where you found the theme interesting, but you’d like to rewrite it.

House of Secrets by Chris Columbus and Ned Vizzini.

This sounded really interesting but when I read it, the language and writing techniques/ style was all wrong.


The first book in a series that got you hooked.

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

I picked up this book, totally bored and looking for something to read and then return, just so I could read something. I was captured in the world of Cassandra Clare. So, it ended with a snail-pace attempt at reading slowly so I wouldn’t be held in suspense for eight hours until everything opened again.


A book you wish you could have right now.

This is basically asking what my favourite book to have around is. Well, not happening! You all know what I say to this stuff:

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A killer book. Both senses. Take it as you like.

Running Girl by Simon Mason

I first picked this book up at my local book shop, read the blurb and first couple of pages and put it back. 10 days later, I pick it back up, reappraise the blurb and first chapter and go up to the front desk. This was fabulous, and there was plenty of death and murder and death threats. Those always make up a good (killer) book! Keep an eye out for a review, coming soon in 3D!


A book that you found really confusing.

Zeroes by Scott Westerfeld, Margo Lanagan and Deborah Biancotti.

At first, I was like, ‘wow! Cool. Bank robberies are awesome!’ After: ‘Wait, what?! Why does it keep changing people? There are too many perspectives!’ And it was just weird and confusing.


Your spirit animal book.

Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare, Percy Jackson by Rick Riordan, Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas, The Selection by Kiera Cass- Oh, wait there are too many books and all of the listed above are series. Ha.

As you can see, there are too many. Not funny fabulous authors!


A dark, twisted book.

Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder.

Totally twisted and dark- I loved it. And the twistedness didn’t stop me from reading the rest of the series and then all of her other books. And the next book in her series! Dawn Study… I need it! A year?! I am rambling. Again, look out for a review!


A book that surprised you in a great way, reveals to be more than it is.

To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han.

I loved this book. When I bought this book, I thought it was going to be really shallow. It is not. This is a moving story about a girl who’s life was turned upside down and inside out by one simple move. I proceeded to read Ps. I Still Love You, the sequel to To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before. I wish there had been a third book…


Well, who are the tributes?

I pick….

Nikki @ Alice in WonderBookLand (Thank you for following us!)

Izzy @ Ravenclaw Book Club (Yes, I went to the ends of the Earth to find your name! No, it was in ‘About’)

Now, who’s next?

Even if I haven’t tagged you, you are all tributes!

Xox,

Laurena

The Crown:

General Information:

  • Publisher: Harper Teen
  • Pages: 279
  • Type: Hardcover
  • ISBN: 0062392174

Synopsis: 

It has been twenty years since America Singer and Maxon Schreave fell in love. Now it’s their daughter, Eadlyn Schreave’s  turn. Thirty-five suitors entered the selection, and now it’s time to make a decision. Who will win her heart?

Opinion:

Kiera Cass has done it again. If you have ever read a book from ‘The Selection’, you might know that the last book, ‘The Crown, has been released recently. The final instalment in the series is flawless, with a perfect ending to an amazing series. The only criticism I have, however, is that a longer epilogue would not have been frowned upon.

In the Crown, we will see Eadlyn face a number of tough challenges, namely being the upcoming wedding. With her mother, America, unwell after she suffered a heart attack in ‘The Heir’, Eadlyn must come to terms with possibly that her mother may never be able to go back to being Queen, and what this means for Eadlyn and her suitors.

If you have had any doubts at all about reading the last book in the series, I can promise that ‘The Crown’ will prove its worth. Whilst the plot may start off slow in the first few chapters, you will have no time to breathe when the book really gets interesting. Not to mention two potential plot twists between the suitors, and even though this book doesn’t contain as much romance as the others, there is no doubt that ‘The Crown’ will reap a few awards for the beautiful storyline and delicate plot.

So whether or not you are ‘Team Kile’ or ‘Team Hale’, there is something for everyone. And the best bit? No one dies. Well, no one important… Ladies and Gentlemen, may I present the award-winning book, ‘The Crown’ by Kiera Cass.

I rate this book a strong five stars with recommendations, left, right and centre. Age rating is 13+.

-Ally