Monthly Archives: April 2016

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?

magnus 4

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 ❤

magnus 2.gif 5

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

Happy reading everyone!

you're welcome

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 –

I can be found-

Twitter

Facebook

Goodreads

Happy reading everyone!

tris

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!

I can be found-

Twitter

Facebook

Goodreads

Happy Reading Everyone!

dge

 

 

 

Top 5 Wednesday – Rainy Day Reads!

rain

Hi guys! It’s Wednesday once again and that means it’s time for Top 5 Wednesday, created by gingerreadslainey and hosted by Sam @ThoughtsOnTomes. If you want to know more about Top 5 Wednesday you can go to the Goodreads page by clicking here. This week’s theme is Rainy Day ReadsFor me a Rainy Day Read is a short (ish) stand alone with a sad or melancholy feel that I can just curl up with and be pulled into the world for the day.

In no particular order-

  • Like a Virgin by Gordon Steel

like a virgin

Like a Virgin is a short play about two loving teenage bestfriends who dream of being pop stars. The story revoles around their friendship and what happens when one of their lives changes and not for the better…

Like a Virgin by Gordon Steel – Review

  • We Were Liars by E.Lockhart

16143347

A hard hitting tale of family, friendship and the mistakes we make and the ones we have to live with.

We Were Liars by E.Lockhart – Review

Brooklyn by Colm Toibin

brooklyn cover  Brooklyn 7

Brooklyn is a real Irish immagration story, I found Brooklyn so relatable, relatable to anyone who has ever been home sick, ever been in love or dreamed of a better life.

Brooklyn by Colm Toibin – Review

Tuck2  Tuck1

What if you could live forever? Would you really want too?

Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt – Review

magicians newphew  narnia 3

Great for fans of The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe or The Chronicles of Narnia The Magician’s Nephew is the real orgin story of Narnia and tells us how Narnia really came to be.

The Magician’s Nephew (The Chronicles of Narnia #1) – Review

That’s it for my Top 5 Wednesday,

I can be found

Happy Reading Everyone!

Luna

 

March Wrap Up & April TBR

the book theif

Hi Guys and welcome to my March Wrap Up and April TBR- March has been both a successful and unsuccessful reading month, successful in the sense of I read some really great books but unsuccessful in the sense I only read three of them.

My March Reads

the girls emma cline

The Girls by Emma Cline is a really interesting piece of literary fiction which tells the story of the Manson Killings from the point of view of a fourteen-year-old girl. To read my full review click the link above, I rated the girls 3/5 stars.

cinder Luna

Cinder by Marissa Meyer

Cinder (Book 1 in the Lunar Chronicles) is a science fiction re-telling of Cinderella. Cinderella (Cinder) is a Cyborg this ongoing series is a romp which I definitely plan on continuing with. I gave Cinder 3/5 stars!

passenger alexandra bracken

Passenger by Alexandra Bracken

Passenger is a time travel young adult novel with an interesting premise but when it came down to the nitty gritty it wasn’t for me. To read my full review click above, I gave this 2/5 stars!

April TBR

magnus 2

As a rule, I do like to keep my TBR pretty open because as my mood changes what I like to read changes  but I do have a few books I would like to get through this April.

Currently reading

City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare

city of fallen angels

Ever since the release of Lady Midnight I have been reminded how behind I am with The Shadow Hunter Chronicles. I have read the Infernal Devices but only the first three of The Mortal Instruments so this month I am attempting to play catch up!

City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clare

city of lost souls

All part of my Shadowhunters catch up plan!

The Light Between Oceans by M.L Steadman

the light between oceans

I was never particularly interested in this and then I saw the movie trailer for the adaptation of the novel which is being released this year and MAY have been brought to tears.

Scarlett by Marrissa Meyer

Scarlett

I have recently finished Cinder and cannot wait to jump into book 2 of The Lunar Chronicles.

The Book Thief by Marcus Zuzak

the book theif.gif 2

I have started this book a few times but this month is finally the month.

I hope you have enjoyed my March Wrap up and April TBR!

Happy Reading Everyone!

eleven and amy

 

 

 

Let’s talk about… My Rating System and How I Review My Reads

I have been wanting to write a discussion post for a while about my rating system and how I personal rate and review my books. From looking at other bloggers and Vloggers out there is seems that most people work from the 5 Stars Goodreads/Netgalley/Amazon basis. Which when you are all reviewing as part of the same ‘community’ keeps things pretty clear cut, or so you would think.

as if

I problem with the 5 Star rating system that I have heard mentioned a few times- how can I rate Pride and Prejudice (or classics like it) the same way I would rate The Host by Stephenie Myer these are two great novels both which I have given a 5 Star rating but is there any way we can compare them? Surely isn’t one better or more valued than the other, so how can they be equally worth 5 Star?

lizzy bennett reading

Stop. Or you will drive yourself rating system crazy!

This is true. When most sites only give you the option of a 5 Star rating and I like to keep my blog in line with how I have rated a book else where (be it Goodreads, Netgalley) where ever, so where in lies the limitation. I see decimal points used a lot and I’m not against that but it’s not really how I like to rate I stick to the 1-5 barrier and if I think a book is a ‘low’ 4 star for example I will say so in my review the same way I would if it was a high 4 star but didn’t quite reach the pinnacle of a 5 star rating.

I have 3.26 Goodreads

Some might say this is pretty low but I would say I am a harsh but fair reviewer and I don’t give 1-star ratings, my opinion is if a person bothered to sit down and write a book, they at least deserve one star. If I give a book 1 star the likely hood is I hated it or DNF, it happens to the best of us and is nothing personal.

meh

2-star ratings are normally books that I haven’t particularly enjoyed, perhaps struggled to get through for whatever reason. I like a story to really pull me in and keep me there and if a book doesn’t do that a book is alway going to get a lower rating from me. A 2-star rating can be from anything from writing style or pacing to dislike of a character. That’s the great thing about books they are totally subjective, something that I don’t like some else is going to love!

I always think of a 3-star rating as a pretty solid read that I have had a great time reading that book. If I read a book and give it 3 stars that is a good rating I enjoyed it, I just reserve my 4/5star ratings for books which really, truly grab and stay with me.

When rating a book four stars I think of it as really rating 5 stars because I so rarely give out a 5-star ratingS. (I’ve done it a handful of times since I’ve bee blogging) Some of my favourite books are books I have rated 4- stars, I know I am a tough reviewer and I don’t give out praise easily but that’s because when I give a 5-star ratings I want them mean something.

I guess I think of 5 star rated books as perfect (to me) I have rated The History Boys by Alan Bennett 5 Stars along with The Perks of Being a Wallflower and Clockwork Prince as well as a handful of others and I look forward to finding more!

The most important thing is rating, reviewing it’s fun right? Let’s remember the subjectiveness of reading what’s for me might not be for you but we read, hear about new books and that’s what it’s all about!

Happy reading everyone!

happy dance