Monthly Archives: February 2014

Tigerlily Review by Jodi Lynn Anderson

I have had this book on my Goodreads to read list for-ever, so I was really excited to finally get around to reading it, Tigerlily is a unique re-telling  of the classic J.M Barrie tale Peter Pan.

Tiger1

Tigerlily book cover

This story rather than focusing on Peter is the story of Tigerlily the girl with the feather in her hair- told through the eyes of the infamous Tinkerbell.

Tinkerbell is a great narrator for the story, telling Tigerlily and Peter’s story though her own assertive and loyal eyes. Tinkerbell’s telling the story right before Wendy came to NeverLand and, this story is not of Peter’s love for Wendy but of his love for Tigerlily, Wendy comes later…

I went into this book thinking I was going to love it, so I suppose I set myself up for a bit of a fall.

Tink really is a great narrator but it’s the rest of the story that I find problematic. Because, the story is essentially a love affair between Peter and Tigerlily and, the characters were aged up which straight away lost some of the charm of the original tale for me.

tiger2

 (Peter, Tinkerbell and Wendy- 2003)

The whole point of Peter Pan is that he is the boy who never grows up but some how in Tigerlily all the magic of Peter and Neverland, the whole boyhood and childishness of the tale has been written away. In Tigerlily’s Neverland it’s a place were you stop ageing after the most significant moment in your life has passed so mothers can in fact look younger than their daughters and aging in referred to as a disease.

A great character, probably my favourite character in this book was the character of TickTock, Tigerlily’s adoptive father.

( Tigerlily – 2003)

Tick Tick is described as a man who can not decide whether he is a man or a woman and has decided he will live as both. I found him an interesting and ultimately diverse character, and may have shed a tear or two for Tick Tock along the way.

Although there were good points I have to stand my by original conclusion Tigerlily is an interesting re-telling but I found that turning Peter Pan into a half starved emaciated teen struggling to survive in the harsh and ruthless Neverland took some magic out of the story.

Neverland became such a cold and callous place I began to wonder what a fairy like Tinkerbell was even doing there and, with Mr.Smee more menacing than Captain Hook I knew there was a problem.

Hook – 2003

All in all an interesting read for any Peter Pan fan but it just wasn’t for me.

In the Woods by Tana French Review

I’m not normally a fan of the crime genre normally I find it a bit samey the detective is normally emotionally scarred in someway and is completely or at least partially incapable of any kind of relationships and sits, alone in his (never hers) dingy flat solving unsolvable murders brilliantly. (YAWN!)

Sherlock Gun animated GIF

In the Woods veered away from some of these stereotypes although the Detective Rob Ryan was emotionally scarred (and was obviously a man) He had good reason for his emotional dilapidation and it was the under current for most of this debut novels plot. I would say more but… SPOILERS!

Spoilers River Song animated GIF

Plot

When Rob Ryan (previously Adam Ryan) was a twelve year old boy his two best friends disappeared in the woods near their homes in Dublin never to be seen again. He was found, his shoes filled with blood and his nails clinging to a tree in the woods with no memory of what had happened to his friends. Now a detective he is called back to the small town  where it all happened where a young child has turned up dead at a archaeological dig. Rob is terrified that the past will come back to haunt him and force him to go and look back to a past that he had done his best to leave behind him.

ittw

In the Woods is a great novel especially considering it’s a debut, it is a deep and carefully considered book about friendship and about those that we must leave behind even when we wish we didn’t have too. What made this novel for me was the friendship between Rob and his police partner Cassie a believable platonic friendship with tragedy in its wake.

This is the first in a series but can be read just as well as a stand alone the next book is called The Likeness.

4/5 Stars!

Down To You by M.Leighton (Bad Boys Series Book 1) Review

Down To You (Bad Boys Series Book 1)

Down to you is about identical twin brothers Cash and Nash and before you laugh hysterically at the god awful names and move on I should say I loved this book!

I binged read Down to you in one day, the first in the Bad boys trilogy, and I have to say it was not a waste of time. Both Cash and Nash Davenport fall for the same girl Olivia Townsend a student who is a struggling financially. Cash meets her at hen do at his bar and before long she is working for him and juggling both brothers, even though Nash is her bitchy cousin’s boyfriend, what a brazen hussy.

It is a  hilarious twin juggling romp and at its very heart the boys are hiding a dark secret which threatens their relationship with Olivia and with each other, all the while Olivia is trying to choose between the identical twins which such opposite personalities.

Down to You (The Bad Boys, #1)

I will just tweak your imagination by saying the twins father is in prison for murder and has left behind him a whole heap of trouble.

It’s written from two different POV’s which makes for interesting reading and I could really hear the different character’s voices and made for a pleasurable reading experience. My only criticism is that it makes for a bit of a sloppy read with a few spelling errors that crop up here and there, but all in all I really enjoyed with book. None of this stopped me downloading book two straight to my kindle and I have to say it was another cracker (I’m currently making my way through book three)

All in all it’s a massive thumbs up for Down to you book one in the bad boys series. It’s fluff but it very readable fluff with characters that have had me lost in their world, a world which I’m not quite ready to leave.

Halo by Alexandra Adornetta Review

Halo is the first in the Halo trilogy by Alexandra Adornetta followed by Hades and Heaven, the series follows three angels, now lets just *pause* and sigh for originality…okay done.

Halo cover

Halo cover

The angels, Beth, Gabriel and Ivy were sent to modern day earth to make it a better place (or whatever) really, they mooch about shopping, brooding and snogging the humans so really what ‘the angels’ are doing on earth in the first place is a bit of a moot point from the word go.

Now before I just go ahead and slate Halo I should say the author was eighteen years old when she wrote book one and this isn’t even her first novel so, I feel there is a moment needed just for, well the f*c* done. My eighteen year old brain was far to preoccupied with what eighteen boys where doing to think about writing my course work let alone novels but…

Hades cover

Hades cover

Halo is drivel, but it’s my favourite kind of drivel, the kind of drivel where we, the reader knows from page 1 that Beth and random,  insert boy character here – (who in this case happens to be the wet blanket that is Xavier)  who woos, and broods and pouts and pines until declaring his undying if somewhat predictable love for Beth.

Look I blame myself, look at the cover, it basically says if you open this book it’s going to be gooey and sickly sweet.

Sick Vomit animated GIF

If you open this book you are going to laugh and not in the good way, the cover was my warning light but, being the massive cover slut that I am I opened up that bad boy and fell into the gooey sticky mess.

In general I am a big supporter of YA novels but for me Halo took the genre one step to far, not just because of it’s predictability but because in the moments that where suppose to be tender and romantic it was just funny, really, very funny.

Heaven cover

Heaven cover

The good points

This is well written and easy read and I flew through it  in two days and, despite my review I have purchased (the kindle edition) of Hades (don’t judge me)  because, in a sort of tortuous way I have to know what happens to Beth and Xavier, and, dare I say it, will they ever be together? (Sheds fake tear for affect)

The best way I can describe this book is, it’s like a contortionist, you can’t help but look.

Splintered by A.G Howard Review

I’m not going to tell a lie, I bought this book because of the cover (which is exquisite by the way.)

Yes, I’m one of THOSE people, a magpie of the book world, and I not a ashamed to admit it.

Splintered Cover

Splintered Cover

I have to say that Splintered is much more than just looks, it’s a Young Adult Alice in Wonderland re-telling with a kick! I can be a bit of a YA snob at times but by this point in my relationship with Splintered I had already fallen in love with the cover and the twirly chapter titles and Alice, I knew I was going to LOVE this book.

Splintered is a re-telling of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, the book’s main character is Alyssa who is the great, great, great – granddaughter of THE  Alice who, after returning from Wonderland told Lewis Carol, a family friend all about her adventures in Wonderland when she was a child. Alice’s stories are taken for ravings and she ends up in a mental institution where she spends the rest of her life.

Is somebody late? A.G Howard has a very different take on The White Rabbit

Is somebody late? A.G Howard has a very different take on The White Rabbit

Alyssa’s mother also suffers from the same affliction and is locked up because she talks to flowers and bugs and will only eat her meals from a tea cup and, now Alyssa fears she is going down the same path as her descendants one of whom tried to ‘fly’ off a tall building. Alyssa can hear flowers and bugs just like her mother and is frighten of what this means for her sanity and her future.

Splintered is a fabulous witty adaptation of Alice in Wonderland with a devilish love triangle to book! Anyone who is thinking about readying the first in this trilogy, the best advice I could give would be to look out for Morpheus, you will never look at moths in the same way again!

Unhinged January 2014

Unhinged January 2014

The second in the Splintered Trilogy- Unhinged is coming out in January 2014, and the third – Ensnared to be published 2015, I just can’t wait.

Crystal Gardens by Amanda Quick – Ladies of Lantern Street (Book 1) Review

So, in my attempt at shaking up my reading list a little bit I purchased Crystal Gardens – A Ladies of Lantern Street Novel by Amanda Quick the first in the trilogy.

Crystal Gardens By Amanda Quick

Crystal Gardens By Amanda Quick

I had never read any Jayne- Ann Krentz novels before and was intrigued to learn she regularly writes under the pseudonyms Amanda Quick and Jane Castle depending on the genre of her writing, Crystal Gardens is paranormal fiction and my first real taste of the genre. I am a regular reader of fantasy novels and thought this would be an easy transition.

Crystal Gardens is set in Victorian England; the main character of the novel is Evangeline Ames a paid companion, with ‘special talents’. Evangeline is a young woman past the age of marriage for her time with no other way to support herself finical she joins the companion agency who, it turns out only take on woman with special physic ‘gifts’ with these gifts the agency goes about solving cases for its clients, mostly regarding extra marital affairs. Evangeline is paid well, a lot higher than the usual companion rate as are all the girls because the risks they take, It is during one of these cases that a threat is made on Evangeline’s life and is she and her friends decide it is a good idea for her to get away for a while to the small town of Little Dixby. While there another attempt is made on Evangeline’s life and, in an attempt to escape Evangeline runs to the nearest and largest and coincidentally the most supernatural house in the area Crystal Gardens.

She is saved by the mysterious Lucas Sebastian who immediately takes an interest in her, and her abilities, of course Lucas and Crystal Gardens have their own secrets which Evangeline is just dying to discover.

All in all Crystal Gardens is all right, it was a very easy ready but personally I didn’t think the paranormal side to the book was done particularly well. The romance between Lucas Sebastian and Evangeline Ames was the only thing that I really liked about the book; I guess I found it all a bit predictable.

This was the first  Jayne- Ann Krentz novel I have ever read and, I have read reviews from  long-time fans saying her other books are much better than Crystal Gardens so I haven’t been put off I’m all for second chances but I won’t be buying the rest of the trilogy any time soon!

Tyringham Park by Rosemary McLoughlin Review

So, I have become a little addicted to the book haul videos on BookTube recently and watching Booktubers haul their books made be in the mood to do a little book haul of my own. I have a kindle but, really it just makes me pine for the feeling of a novel between my finger so, I had a booky date with Amazon (don’t judge me) where I purchased Tyringham Park by Rosemary McLoughlin.

pb1

Now, as an avid Downton Abbey fan I think I was bamboozled into buying this book mainly by the big house on the cover and the Amazon quotes that stated if you love Downton Abbey you will love this, I can’t stress enough how this is nothing like Downton Abbey.

 

Annoyed Downton Abbey animated GIF

There is no glamour in this book what so ever and no really protagonist, the main character how ever is Charlotte Blackshaw who’s father is the Lord at Tyringham park. Her mother shows very little interest in her or her little sister Victoria and, one afternoon her Ladyship for some unknown reason decides she will have an hour with little Victoria which is completely out of usual character. During this hour the child disappears, it is believed by most that Victoria fell into the river and drowned when her Ladyship was not looking but, Lady Edwina believes she has been abducted.

Charlotte’s tale really is a sad one, abused by her nanny and hated by her mother as she grows up through the novel the consequences of such a horrific emotional neglect play out and affect Charlotte as an adult and she struggles to believe that she is worth more than nothing. As the reader we are supposed to feel for Charlotte in her darkest hours but it is hard to feel for a character that is so self destructive.

Eventually I lost interest in the out come of her character, It is also hard to read a book when there is no one to root for, we follow Charlotte’s story but I’m not sure if I wanted her to win in the end, as a reader she tested my patience. For me Lady Blackshaw is the most interesting Character because she is such an appalling mother and, human being.

All in all, Tyingham Park is written okay but there is know real flare, I would recommend it to people who don’t mind not falling in love with the characters they are reading about or at the very least liking them, most of the characters in this novel are highly despicable and I’m sure that was the point but, for me it was all a bit like hard work.