Monthly Archives: April 2016

I’m officially on Watt Pad!

Hi guys,

Today I wanted to talk to about writing – I blog (obviously) and for as long as I can remember like so many people I have written stories, and poems but have always been shy about sharing them even with close friends and family.

watt pad

I heard about Watt Pad about a year ago and today finally bit the bullet and joined up I’m only on day 1 but so far it seems like it’s going to be a positive experience, a place where I can get comments, advice, and feedback in a safe like-minded space.

Are any of you on Watt Pad? What are you thoughts? Do you have any advice?

I am going to be talking about my writing journey and I hope you will join me!

Come and find me on Watt Pad and check out my first  (and on going novel) A Story of Will. 

Happy Reading (and Writing) Everyone!

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City of Heavenly Fire by Cassandra Clare- Review

Stop. If you have not read all the books in The Mortal Instruments Series and The Infernal Devices then this review will spoil things for you- step away now!

This month has been the month of The Mortal Instruments for me (and Shadowhunter Academy and Lady Midnight) This book was such a great round up to a series that I started reading three years ago with City of Bones. I went on a bit of a Shadowhunters hiatus when I finished City of Glass because (and I know some of you will agree) it does feel like a finale. When I started watching the Shadowhunters t.v show on Netflix it all came back to me, this world, this wonderful, wonderful world and what I was missing but not finishing the rest of the series.

cohf

City of Heavenly Fire is so clever the way it interweaves new characters Emma Carstairs and Julian Blackthorn right at the start. We get to know Emma, Julian  and the rest of the Blackthorn children from the beginning of book all ready paving the way for them to take over as the new protagonists in the Dark Artifices.

When we meet Emma and Julian and the rest of the Blackthorns the terrible Sebastian is turning Shadowhunters into his very own Endarkened army getting them to drink from his own sick, Sebastian version of The Mortal Cup. Just replace Angel blood with Demon blood and Sebastian has his very own recipe for zombie, Shadowhunters with kickass fighting skills, all willing to follow him to the end of the world (Evil villain plus evil army sounds like disaster waiting to happen.)

sebastian

Now it has taken five and a bit books for Clary and Jace to get their acts together first there was Simon, there was the whole brother and sister thing, then Jace was being all Herondale-y about EVERYTHING. Finally, Clace are in a good(ish) place I mean it is the end of the world after all and Jace is always going to be Jace (aka such a drama queen) but it’s in the blood *coughs Will*.

clary jace

My favourite ship was not doing as well, in City of Lost Souls held some dramatic moments for me- the Malec breakup. City of Heavenly Fire continues on in this vein, I cannot tell you how many times I said out loud “Magnus just tell Alec who Will is!” So frustrating, but in the best possible way and when Magnus is taken with Raphael, Josealenne and Luke and our A team (Clary, Jace, Alec Izzy and Simon) go to rescue them I loved the moment Alec broke down to Jace was like how would you feel if Clary had been taken? Poor Alec going out his mind and his Parabatai didn’t notice how afraid he was feeling (Jace why are you always so self-involved?).

the smile

The witty dialogue and character development is something I LOVE about Cassandra Clare’s writing you never feel like you are on the outside looking in on the story but really in the book living it with the characters.

Simon is really the hero of this story for me and City of Heavenly Fire just finishes off the journey he has been through in the novels so perfectly – Mundane, Vampire – Clary, Izzy. He saves Magnus, he might have lost his memories but he saved Magnus  and in my book that makes him a true hero.

sizzy

I just want to take a moment to talk about Brother Zachariah after reading Clockwork Princess I knew, I flipping knew he was going to make an appearance now I’m bias Jem’s my favourite character in all of Cassandra Clare’s books (Magnus is chomping at his heels mind you!) Seeing him ‘back’, talk about Tessa about Will *sheds tear* I’m really looking forward to seeing him and Tessa make future appearances in Lady Midnight and Beyond.

Overall this was an epic last instalment, Shadowhunters books are fun, funny and with ships to go down with!

5/5 Paint and Butterflies Stars!

Happy Reading Everyone!

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My Shadowhunters reviews and things

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare – Review

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare – Review

Tessa/Will Reading Challenge

The Mortal Instruments Film vs Shadowhunters TV Show

Let’s Talk About Shadowhunters!

City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare- Review

City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clare- Review

 

 

Top 5 Wednesday – Favourite Fictional Mothers

Hi guys welcome back to Top 5 Wednesday, Top 5 Wednesday was originally created by  gingerreadslainey and is now hosted by YouTuber Sam @ThoughtsOnTomes. This week’s topic is Favourite Fictional Mothers, now as I was looking back over the books I have read and my favourite mothers in books I realised how noticeably absent in books Mums and mother figures are. I know this is a recurring problem in Young Adult but I don’t think this is just a YA problem I think it is a generally bookish problem- where are all the Mums people? 

But here are the Mums I have enjoyed reading and what I have enjoyed about them the most!

Pride and Prejudice 

Mrs Bennett 

mrs bennett

Now I know when thinking of Mrs Bennett the first thought isn’t ‘mother of the year’ but I do think she has some great qualities. Mrs Bennett is very much a woman of her time and is very aware that her daughters have nothing to inherit and will be in a tough situation if they don’t get married. She makes marrying her daughters off her mission and although she doesn’t always get it right (most of the time she gets it very, very wrong) and often smothers her daughters to death but her heart is always in the right place.

Harry Potter Series

Molly Weasley

molly

Molly Weasley is my favourite mother in any book, she loves her kids, she cares about their well-being. When they have done something stupid or dangerous she tells them off, she practically adopted Harry and who could forget the way she kicked Bellatrix’s ass!

Tuck Everlasting

Mae Tuck

mae

The whole Tuck family have been through a lot and Mrs Tuck is the glue that’s holding the family together and when Winnie comes into their lives she extends that stability and that love to her.

Fifty Shades of Grey Series

Dr Grace Trevelyan

grace

I know, Fifty Shades controversial, I do have a lot of problems with this series as a whole but I don’t have a problem with Christian’s mum Grace. She adores her two adoptive children and is well aware that as a young child Christian has been through and seen some pretty disturbing things. When she finds out about Christian’s affair with ‘Mrs Robbinson’ she is horrified that she missed what was happening with her underage son and although he is now an adult still goes straight into over protective Mum mode. -Love her.

Saga Series 

Alana

Alana saga

Alana is a solider, has her baby in the middle of a war, goes on the run, she is protective, loving and full of some great one-liners.

I hope you enjoyed my Top 5 Wednesday!

Happy Reading Everyone!

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Musing Mondays ( 25/4/16)

Hi guys and once it’s Monday and as we are back to the beginning of the week its time for Musings Monday! Musings Monday is a weekly meme hosted by Books and a Beat where you answer one of the of the questions bellow followed by a weekly random question. So let’s get started!

lizzy bennett reading

  • I’m currently reading…
  • Up next I think I’ll read…
  • I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
  • I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I can’t wait to get a copy of…
  • I wish I could read ___, but…
  • I blogged about ____ this past week…

THIS WEEK’S RANDOM QUESTION: Your favorite poem, or collection of poetry?

Currently Reading

lady midnight

I have been on such a Shadowhunters binge this month and have been totally drawn into this world again, throughout April I have managed to read City of Fallen Angels, City of Lost Souls, City of Heavenly Fire and Tales from Shadowhunter Academy. I am still reading Lady Midnight and will do a full review on it soon so I won’t say to much on it now- but I will say I have had so much fun reading this book so far. I tried so hard to stay away from Lady Midnight spoilers and this book has been an unexpected and interesting ride. Sadly I only have about two hundred pages left, I’ll be sad when it’s over but only because there is such a long wait till the next book!

City of Fallen Angels – Review

City of Lost Souls – Review

Favorite poem, or collection of poetry?

Annabel Lee by Edger Allen Poe

I wouldn’t say this is neccessarly my favourite poem but it is definitly a poem that I enjoy and I have read and enjoyed Edger Allen Poe’s poetry collection in the past. Also Annabel Lee is referanced quite alot in Lady Midnight so this poem is on my mind at the moment.

It was many and many a year ago,
   In a kingdom by the sea,
That a maiden there lived whom you may know
   By the name of Annabel Lee;
And this maiden she lived with no other thought
   Than to love and be loved by me.
I was a child and she was a child,
   In this kingdom by the sea,
But we loved with a love that was more than love—
   I and my Annabel Lee—
With a love that the wingèd seraphs of Heaven
   Coveted her and me.
And this was the reason that, long ago,
   In this kingdom by the sea,
A wind blew out of a cloud, chilling
   My beautiful Annabel Lee;
So that her highborn kinsmen came
   And bore her away from me,
To shut her up in a sepulchre
   In this kingdom by the sea.
The angels, not half so happy in Heaven,
   Went envying her and me—
Yes!—that was the reason (as all men know,
   In this kingdom by the sea)
That the wind came out of the cloud by night,
   Chilling and killing my Annabel Lee.
But our love it was stronger by far than the love
   Of those who were older than we—
   Of many far wiser than we—
And neither the angels in Heaven above
   Nor the demons down under the sea
Can ever dissever my soul from the soul
   Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;
For the moon never beams, without bringing me dreams
   Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;
And the stars never rise, but I feel the bright eyes
   Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;
And so, all the night-tide, I lie down by the side
   Of my darling—my darling—my life and my bride,
   In her sepulchre there by the sea—
   In her tomb by the sounding sea.

I hope you enjoyed today’s Musings Monday!

Happy Reading Everyone!

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I Can Show You The World (In Books) – Book Tag

I love to travel – in real life and in my reading life. So it’s no great surprise that I love to read books from all over the world. Thanks to Nicolette from A Little Bookish, A Little Writerly for tagging me in this tag (go check her out :-)), it has been a while since I was actually tag but I always get to my tags eventually!

The rules are simple. List a country, and then show which favorite book of yours is set in that country. You can use the countries I have used, add your own, or use completely different ones!

United States

Brooklyn by Colm Toibin

A story of love, home, and self-discovery such an epic tale of first love,true love, loss and family. My Brooklyn Review

England

The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare

Gahh! I love this series if you haven’t read it seriously what have you been doing all this time? The Prequel to The Mortal Instruments Series, The Infernal Devices is probably my favourite love story of all time. Clockwork Angel – Review

The  Maldives

On The Island Tracey Garvis Graves

I recommend this book to everyone if you’re looking for a unique love story that will break your heart and then put it back together again piece by piece this my friend is for you!

Ireland

In The Woods by Tana French

Book 1 in The Dublin Murder Squad Series (can be read as a standalone) In The Woods is a unique, creepy crime novel that constantly keeps you guessing. In The Woods – Review

France

Labyrinth by Kate Mosse

Labyrinth is set both in modern and medieval France switching perspectives between two young women as they go on the same jounrney, generations apart- this is a grail story just not as you have ever heard it before… Labyrinth – Review

I hope you have enjoyed my ‘I can show you the world tag’

My Tags

Morgan @ Bookenstein

Teacup Talk

Lola @ Hit or Miss Books

Jordan @ Read by Roe

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Yasmin & Paige @ The Wild Readers

The Orangutan Librarian

Madeline@ The SFF Bookshelf

Kirsty@ Kirsty Reads Blog

Cátia @ The Girl Who Read Too Much

Lila @ The Book Keepers Secrets

Happy Reading Everyone!

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Top Ten Tuesday- Books That Will Make You Laugh

Welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday which is a weekly meme hosted by the lovely people over at The Broke & the Bookish this weeks topic is books that will make you laugh (or at least chuckle). While participating in this weeks Top Ten Tuesday I realised that I don’t read a lot of ‘funny’ books, books with funny moments (or characters) but not where comedy or humour is the main objective- having spent some time thinking about it here is my list.

books

In no particular order-

My Booky Wook by Russell Brand 

Essentially an autobiography from comedian Russell Brand talks of Russell’s early years and his struggle with drug and sex addiction all told through his unique voice and prose.

my booky wook

City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments #1) by Cassandra Clare

I feel like I need to specify that ANY of Cassandra Clare’s books could have made with list except maybe Clockwork Princess *wipes tear from eye*, she is the queen of witty dialogue. I chose City of Bones because it has some of my favourite Simon and Jace moments they have such great back and forth in the early days.

city of bones

You Had Me At Hello by Mhairi Mcfarlane 

You Had Me at Hello is a love story between best friends which makes for some super cute, super hilarious moments this book also tugs on the hearts strings as well.

You had me at hello

The Martian by Andy Weir

The Martian centres around one man in a dire situation it his strong sense of humor that gets him through and it’s  the comedic writing that makes The Martian a must read.

the martian

The Silver Linings Playbook by Mathew Quick

Although not automatically thought of as a funny book The Silver Linings Playbook has some great emotionally charged funny moments guaranteed to make you think.

fhdfh

Saga by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples

This a funny, witty and charming graphic novel and has real nack for writing about family.

saga vol 2

Me Before You by JoJo Moyes

I feel like Me Before You is everywhere right now and this makes me so happy because it’s one of my favourite books. Although the story is fundamentally quite heart wrenching Lou and Will provide some great laugh out loud moments.

me before you 1

Cheerful Weather for the Wedding by  Julia Strachey 

A comedy about family – set on the morning of a young woman’s wedding while her former lover waits down stairs.

cheerful

Tamara Drewe by Posey Simmonds 

Posey Simmonds very British graphic novel based on Far from the Madding Crowd Tamara Drewe is a hilarious romp set in the English country -side with three love interests to boot!

Tamara Drewe 2

P.S I Love You by Cecelia Ahern

Yes, P.S I Love You is a sad book but through the tears, there is a lot of laughter to be had.

p.s I love you

Hope you enjoyed my Top Ten Tuesday Everyone!

Happy Reading!

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City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clare- Review

I’m on such a Shadowhunters kick recently in real time I’m reading Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy right now but this isn’t real time this is review time and this is my review of City of Lost Souls!

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Getting back into this world has been so much fun I had quite a substantial break between reading City of Glass and my reading of City of Fallen Angels which was spurred on when I started watching the show on Netflix. It was brought back to me how much I enjoyed being in this world so the minute season 1 ended I picked up City of Fallen Angels and picked up where I had left off. City of Fallen Angels Review

city of lost souls

By the time I had finished City of Fallen Angels I was totally immersed back in this world and it reminded me of the love and laughs that as a reader you can really have with these characters.

Mild Spoilers for City of Lost Souls Ahead

City of Lost Souls book 5 in The Mortal Instruments Series picks up where City of Fallen Angels left off with Jace missing, abducted by the merciless Sebastian. When Clary finally catches up with him he is not the Jace she had left behind. Jace is now bound magically to her evil, demonic brother Sebastian. Whatever Sebastian wills and wishes are Jace’s are as well when Clary is finally forced to join them in a mysterious demonic apartment that moves so fast to is impossible for the other Shadowhunters to track Clary wonders if she will ever get her Jace back and if that is even possible.

This book also upped the anti when is came to Malec ❤ Magnus is my all time favourite character in any of Cassandra Clares books and I felt that we really got a healthy dose of Magnus moments and his story arc with Alec has really grown and developed into something that is just a joy to read about.

malec 3

I felt that City of Lost Souls was an amazing set up for City of Heavenly fire (which I have just finished *squeals* ) I  have the biggest book hangover right now but not to worry Lady Midnight is in the post!

Paint and Butterflies Rating 4/5 Stars!

Happy Reading Everyone!

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City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare Review

Mild Spoilery content For The Mortal Instruments Books 1-4 ahead

city of fallen angels

After reading The Mortal Instruments books 1-3 and The Infernal Devices 1-3 a couple of years ago almost back to back I have been on a bit of a Shadowhunters hiatus I think I was over loaded by Shadowhuntery goodness (if that can be I thing?) That was until the series began on Freeform (Netflix for me as I am in the UK) the show reminded how much I loved the books and that I need to catch up on the  rest of the series.

simon

For those who haven’t read The Mortal Instruments or aren’t caught up on the rest of the series City of Fallen Angels focuses quite heavily on Simon, Clary’s best friend and Vampire and since the Mortal War is newly marked with The Mark of Cain. Simon is doing his best to live as a vampire/human/daylighter he’s playing in his band and dating two amazing girls including beautiful, badass Shadowhunter Izzy although two timing them might not be the wisest of life choices. Soon the mark that was a lovely (if not miss guidedly) bestowed upon him by Clary starts to cause him trouble and he has several attempts on his life and soon he sees what bearing the Mark of Cain really means. Protected by comedy double act Jace and werewolf Jordan what could possibly go wrong?

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The City of Fallen Angels is definitely a bridge book between the end of the first three Mortal Instruments books that I believe were originally only meant to be a trilogy. It’s really interesting seeing the beginning of what is now not just Clary and Jace’s story; Simon is now not just a side character he is so much more than that and I really enjoyed being back in the Shadowhunter world with all its usual witty diolague and angsty romance (I’m looking at you Clace!)

My only problem with this book would be, City of Glass was a book that felt very much like a finale and City of Fallen Angels was almost starting from the beginning again in terms of pacing. But by the time it was over I was hooked and in love with the world again and I am already flying through City of Lost Souls, it’s great to be back in this world one of my favourite series of all time.

Side note: Magnus ❤

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I gave this a Paint and Butterflies Rating of 3/5 Stars!

Happy reading everyone!

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My Top Ten Romantic Reads- My Recommendations

Hi Guys, today I am taking a look at some of my favourite romantic reads I know romance in books isn’t for everyone one but I do love a good romantic storyline, whether is be the whole plot or just an underlying storyline here are some of my favourite romantic reads and recommendations. Now whenever I mention romance in books I seem to bring up The Host or Me Before You so although I love those books they have been deliberately left off this list.

In no particular order

You Had Me at Hello by Mhairi McFarlane

You had me at hello happy dance

Me Before You is a classic piece of Chic Lit now I look back on it. But when reading this book I have never wanted two fictional characters to get together more and their on /off romance infuriates me (in a good way) like no other.

Summer in February by Jonathan Smith 

summer in february summer-in-february-international-146

I always try and talk about Summer in February because I just don’t think enough people have read it. Based on the real-life diaries that were later turned into a novel by author Jonathan Smith. Summer in February is the tale of a Captain who lives and works within the infamous Lamorna artists colony. Known for producing artists such as Laura Knight and Alfred Munnings. The is a story of love on the cusp of war and art and the friendships we make.

Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare

CP2_cover SO SAD

Book three in the Infernal Devices Trilogy I don’t want to say too much as I want to keep it spoiler free but if you haven’t already read this series pick it up you’re missing out!

Down to You by M.Leighton

d2u fhdhd

This New Adult trilogy is full of love, romance, and twin brothers, what more do you need?

Lady Chatterley’s Lover by D.H Lawrence 

lady chatterly's lover Lady Chatterly's Lover pics.jpg 2

A complex character focused story about the ties that bind us and the things we desire.

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon 

O1 Outlander 2014

Outlander is an on-going time travel saga, book one Outlander focusing on married woman Claire Randell and her love affair with a Scottish man from the past.Time travel is a trope that I really enjoy but it’s hard to find writers that do it really well, Outlander is a great example of Time Travel done brilliantly!

On the Island by Tracey Garvis-Graves

Summer covers 5 cry

The premise of this novel sounds a bit (raises eyebrows) it’s the whole teacher/student relationship trope but it is such a tear jerker and a must read, perfect for the beach.

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen 

pride and p pride prejudice

Mr. Darcy nuff said.

Atonement by Ian McEwan

atonement embrassed turn

Atonement is one of the best WWI novels I have ever read, a story of love, lies and betrayal and the writing is exquisite.

Tamara Drewe by Posey Simmonds 

Tamara Drewe 2 Tamara Drewe 1

Tamara Drewe is a graphic novel (that was later adapted to film) by Posy Simmonds. Loosely based on Far from the Madding Crowd. Tamara Drewe tells the story of one woman and the three men in her life.

I hope you enjoyed my Romantic Recommendations –

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Happy reading everyone!

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The Best Boys (And Men) In Books

I was thinking about my post from International Women’s Day where I talked about my favourite fictional females. Today I am going to giving the boys and men of literature their turn and talking about my favourite boys in books.

Ian – The Host by Stephenie Meyer My review of The Host

Ian

Ian is the ultimate guy with an open mind, he starts the story thinking one thing and by the end thinking something completely different, here’s one chap willing to change and grow.

Jem – The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare Clockwork Angel – Review

jem

If you have read the Infernal devices you know it is filled with two great guys and it was tough picking which of the two would make this list but for me , Jem always pips Will to the post everytime. In YA, Brooding bad boys are ten a penny but a real nice guy? That’s something special.

Mr.Darcy- Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen 

md

Ahh Mr.Darcy a classic. Now I think we can all agree Mr Darcy makes some pretty awful decisions but, in the end he comes good and his broody melodrama is part of why we love him.

Charlie- The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky 

charlie.jpg

Deep, introverted Charlie. Charlie has a love for books and has deeply perceptive take on the world, as well as been sweet and kind. Even though Charlie has had it rather tough at times- let’s not forget he’s a wallflower.

Magnus Bane- The Shadow Hunter Chronicles by Cassandra Clare

magnus 3

I cannot describe my love for this character, he is a funny, witty, riot of a Warlock. He has a weakness for a pretty boy (or girl) and at the end of day has a heart of gold (but prefers that you don’t know that, he has a reputation to maintain!)

Will- Labyrinth by Kate Mosse 

will

If you have read Labyrinth you know Will starts off the story as a bit of a dubious character. Leeching off his older lover and putting his dreams aside he is a bit of a lost soul, but Will goes on a journey, which turns him into the loving man that he was always meant to be.

Lupin – Harry Potter Series by J.K Rowling

Professor Lupin is my favourite Harry Potter character, he is clever and funny with a heart of gold and I think we can all agree he goes through the ringer in the duration of the series.

lupin

Will – Me Before You by JoJo Moyes Me Before You – Review

Me Before You is one of my all-time favourite books, I know I have said here before but I read it in a day. Will is such an interesting character with such depth but what I enjoy most from Will is his snarky personality. He is going through a traumatic personal experience and deals with it by being well pretty awful and I think that is a totally relatable way of dealing with a trauma. Me Before You is a must read!

will traynor

Captain Gilbert Evans – Summer in February by Jonathan Smith 

Last but certainly not least is Gilbert Evans, Gilbert Evans is part of one of my favourite love triangles ever! This kind and sweet Captain is often over shadowed and later betrayed by his best friend A.J Munnings. But with a moral compass that A.J doesn’t possess he fights for life, love and in the end war.

gilbert

Hope you enjoyed by post of favourite boys (men) in books!

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Happy Reading Everyone!

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