Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Lagoon - Nnedi Okorafor

LagoonLagoon by Nnedi Okorafor
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Three strangers, each isolated by his or her own problems: Adaora, the marine biologist. Anthony, the rapper famous throughout Africa. Agu, the troubled soldier. Wandering Bar Beach in Lagos, Nigeria's legendary mega-city, they're more alone than they've ever been before.

But when something like a meteorite plunges into the ocean and a tidal wave overcomes them, these three people will find themselves bound together in ways they could never imagine. Together with Ayodele, a visitor from beyond the stars, they must race through Lagos and against time itself in order to save the city, the world... and themselves.

'There was no time to flee. No time to turn. No time to shriek. And there was no pain. It was like being thrown into the stars.'

I am always happy to read most books, I am open to different genres I have not read, and always give them a go.

I have yet to find a Sci-fi book that I like, to be honest I think that maybe this is just a genre not for me. This book also unfortunately falls into this category.

This is a novel where aliens descend on Lagos. Aliens set up a camp under the sea and strange species appear in the water. Suddenly a huge wave crashes over the beach and three people are swept up into it. Then they are returned there are four...

The novel is told through many voices, this was a little confusing I found at times as some are only present for a chapter or so, where as others seem more permanent. I also found it hard to believe, some of the chapters were told through voices of creatures. This is probably the part of my brain that tells me this cannot be. Hence I am not a Sci-fi fan and struggle to believe it. For this reason I struggled with the book a lot, I eventually gave up with it and did not enjoy it.

I thought the story was well written and the author is very knowledgeable, however this book was not for me. I am sure Sci - Fi fans will love it though.

I would like to thank the publisher for sending this in exchange for an honest review. 

Monday, 24 November 2014

Until You're Mine - Samantha Hayes

Until You're MineUntil You're Mine by Samantha Hayes
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

You're alone. You're vulnerable. And you have something that someone else wants. At any cost ... If you liked BEFORE I GO TO SLEEP, you'll love this gripping psychological thriller.

Claudia seems to have the perfect life.

She's heavily pregnant with a much wanted baby, she has a loving husband, and a beautiful home.

And then Zoe steps into her life. Zoe has come to help Claudia when her baby arrives.

But there's something about Zoe that Claudia doesn't like. Or trust.

And when she finds Zoe in her room going through her most personal possesions, Claudia's anxiety turns to real fear ...

This is a psychological thriller with some good characters that hold the plot together however the author does throw in a few random happenings which don't altogether fit with the flow of the novel.

For the best part it was a good thrilling read; I didn't guess the 'who dunnit' at the end and for me that was a bonus. All along the author is leading you to believe one person is responsible and then throws a curve ball and the last few lines of the book are genius.

Three main characters dominate this novel; Zoe the Nanny, Claudia pregnant with her first child and mother to James' (he's a naval officer and away a lot) two sons Oscar and Noah, and Lorraine a CID officer who is investigating some gruesome murders of pregnant women in the area. The author uses different narrative types - first person when she is being Claudia and Zoe and third person when she is being Lorraine.

The book has good pace and has enough tension and subtle clues to keep the reader moving along and guessing until the end.

I did feel that one part of the story didn't really fit in and that was when we learnt the naval officer husband has been involved in some shady goings on (I don't want to give anything away so won't reveal what). I just felt that this wasn't necessary to the story line and couldn't understand why Samantha Hayes felt it necessary to put it in. I also felt the introduction of the detectives' daughter was irrelevant and not necessary to the story in any way since the reader was not meant to connect with this character and was not vital to the plot.

As with most of these genres of novels it does stretch credibility but for all that it was entertaining and for the best part a gripping read.

It would be easy to retell the story in this review but if I told you I'd have to kill you (only joking); read it an enjoy it. If you liked Gone Girl then this will appeal. For me it just lacked totally bringing together in parts which is what let it down but even with that it was a good thrilling read and I would read this author again. I give this 4 stars because the last line of the book is brilliant, creepy and totally unexpected.

I would like to thank the publisher for sending me this copy in exchange for an honest review.

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Weekly Wrap Up week 27 23/11/14

Wow another week has gone by! Here is my wrap up. 

This week I have been sent: 
The World of Post Secret by Frank Warren (comp winner)
Through the palace keyhole by Ann Hutchinson Sawalha
Beneath the Moon and the Stars by Amelia Thorne 
The Kiss Before Midnight by Sophie Pembroke
Secret Santa by Scarlett Bailey 

This week I have bought: 

Books I have read this week:
Currently reading The Snow Globe

I hope you all had a great reading week and thanks for stopping by!

Friday, 21 November 2014

Elizabeth is missing - Emma Heaey

Elizabeth is MissingElizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Elizabeth is Missing, Emma Healey's stunning debut novel, introduces a mystery, an unsolved crime and one of the most unforgettable characters since Mark Haddon's Christopher. Meet Maud ...

'Elizabeth is missing', reads the note in Maud's pocket in her own handwriting.

Lately, Maud's been getting forgetful. She keeps buying peach slices when she has a cupboard full, forgets to drink the cups of tea she's made and writes notes to remind herself of things. But Maud is determined to discover what has happened to her friend, Elizabeth, and what it has to do with the unsolved disappearance of her sister Sukey, years back, just after the war.

A fast-paced mystery with a wonderful leading character: Maud will make you laugh and cry, but she certainly won't be forgotten.

Maud is 82, her best friend Elizabeth is missing but no one seems to care. The problem Maud has is that she can't remember, she doesn't know where Elizabeth is but she is going to get to the bottom of it.

Maud has to write things down, if she doesn't she will forget completely, Larry though, she can't seem to remember why she has written theses things. None of them make any sense. Maud has been trying to contact Elizabeth for weeks now, she has not been in contact about their weekly meetings and whenever she tires to contact her, she never gets to deal to her. Maud has a horrible feeling something has happened to Elizabeth and she needs to discover what.

This situation with Elizabeth provokes of memories for Maud, years ago her sister Suki disappeared and no one knew what happened to her. The story slips back and forth from th past to the present day. We read about Maud as a young girl and watch the story developed with her sister Suki.

As the story progresses, so does Maud' s dementia and it is a dreadfully sad story to hear. (I listened to the audio book.) There are really sad parts to the story, that had me in tears. From having a family member who had dementia, it bought it home to me how scared and confused they must have been.

I thought that this story was extremely clever and the way it was told was wonderful. Anna was a perfect narration choice, she really gave the characters depth.

This is not an easy read/listen but it makes you stop and think about those people with dementia and gives you a snapshot of how they could be feeling. I also could fee Helen's ain through the book, having to deal with her mother going through this. The story is certainly thought provoking and powerful.

I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this audio book and would recommend it to others. The story itself crosses a few genres I feel and would appeal to a wide range of audiences.

I had like to thank Audible for sending this in exchange for an honest review.

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

eBook of the Year - Vote and be in with the chance to win £100 of eBooks!

Sainsbury's have announced their 2014 finalists for eBook of the year. Go ahead and vote and be in with the chance to win  £100 of ebooks!!!

eBook of the Year 2014 finalists announced

· eBooks by Sainsbury’s reveals finalists for its annual eBook of the Year awards

· Voting opens today and will end on 11 December

· Public vote offers chance to win £100 worth of eBooks

eBooks by Sainsbury’s has revealed the finalists for its annual eBook of the Year awards.

Some of the UK’s most treasured writers including Jojo Moyes and Lee Child have joined the long list of commercially and critically acclaimed authors nominated to receive the coveted prize of eBook of the Year 2014.

The winner will be decided by a public poll on the eBooks by Sainsbury’s website where voting will open today, and close on 11 December. The winning title will be chosen from over 150 eBooks with the winner to be announced on 15 December.

In its second consecutive year, the awards are a celebration of British book publishing and literary talent. From gripping thrillers to out of this world science fiction, the long list includes the nation’s favourite ebooks from the past 12 months, from John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars to the runaway word-of-mouth hit that was The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion.

To encourage participation, every visitor to the eBooks by Sainsbury’s website who votes for their favourite eBook of the Year will be entered into a prize draw to win £100 worth of eBooks. The full collection of eBooks up for nomination can be found where public voting is now open. To vote, simply visit the eBooks of the Year page, log in to your account and click ‘Recommend’ next to your favourite book.

Sharon Nightingale, Head of Commercial at eBooks by Sainsbury’s, said:

“These awards are unique in that they celebrate Britain’s most popular eBooks, the books that bring reading to a huge audience wherever they are. Our long list for 2014 is rich and varied, fully reflecting what a spectacular year it has been, particularly for debut authors. We are honoured to support the industry and authors alike by encouraging people to go out and discover the fantastic reads that have made this year so special.”

Highlights from the eBooks by Sainsbury’s eBook of the Year long list include:

Literary Fiction

- The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion (Penguin UK)

- The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy by Rachel Joyce (Random House UK)

- The Truth about the Harry Quebert Affair by Joël Dicker (Quercus Books)

- The Sunrise by Victoria Hislop (Headline)

Popular Fiction

-         The Lemon Grove by Helen Walsh (Headline)

- The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (Penguin UK)

- Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell (Orion)

- The One Plus One by Jojo Moyes (Penguin UK)

Science Fiction and Fantasy

- The Martian by Andy Weir (Random House UK)

- The Book of Life by Deborah Harkness (Headline)

- The Girl With All The Gifts by M. R. Carey (Little Brown)

- The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman (Headline)

Historical Fiction

- The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters (Little Brown)

- The Blood Crows by Simon Scarrow (Headline)

- Lamentation by C.J. Sansom (Macmillan)

- Desert God by Wilbur Smith (Harper Collins UK)


- This Boy by Alan Johnson (Random House UK)

- There’s Something I’ve Been Dying to Tell You by Linda Bellingham (Hodder)

- So, Anyway by John Cleese (Random House UK)

- Guy Martin: My Autobiography by Guy Martin (Random House UK)

Crime and Thriller

- Cross My Heart by James Patterson (Random House UK)

- Want You Dead by Peter James (Macmillan)

- The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith (Little Brown)

- Personal by Lee Child (Random House UK)

Do not forget to enter to be in with a chance of winning £100! Good Luck

Monday, 17 November 2014

Anti Bullying Week with Giveaway!

From the 17th - 21st November it is anti-bullying week. 

Penguin at Random House has teamed up with The Anti-Bullying Alliance to launch a nationwide anti-bullying campaign inspired by the internationally bestselling novel Wonder by R.J Palacio.

Earlier this year Penguin launched the Choose Kind campaign earlier this year and so far have had over 700 schools in the UK sign up to take part. They are encouraging teachers and pupils to read Wonder, promote kindness in their schools and show us how they did this during Anti-Bullying Week this November. The Anti-Bullying Alliance found that nearly a quarter of 5-18 year olds have been bullied at school and 45% of parents state that they are concerned about their child being bullied.

This isn’t just a campaign for schools, through Wonder we’d like to inspire all people to be a little bit kinder to each other.

So about Wonder:

WONDER has sold over 1.5 million copies worldwide since its publication in February 2012, winning both the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize 5 – 12 fiction category and the Independent Booksellers’ Book Award. It was a #1 on The New York Times Best Seller list and the UK’s biggest children’s debut hardback of 2012.

This incredible story was called ‘rich and memorable’ by The New York Times Book Review, and heralded as ‘the breakout publishing sensation of 2012, destined to go the way of Mark Haddon’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time and then some’ by The Times.

More praise for WONDER:

‘What a gem of a story. Moving and heart-warming. This book made me laugh, made me angry, made me cry’ - Malorie Blackman, Children’s Laureate

‘A beautiful, thought-provoking and very poignant story’ - Mel Giedroyc, presenter & broadcaster

‘Incredibly charming, brutal and brilliant’ - Laura Dockrill, children’s author

‘The breakout publishing sensation of 2012’ - The Times

‘Incredibly charming, brutal and brilliant’ - The Observer

‘Wreaks emotional havoc’ - The Independent

‘In its assured simplicity and boldness it also has the power to move hearts and change minds’ - The Guardian

‘August Pullman is one of the most engaging and lovable [characters] in recent fiction’ - The Telegraph

‘It’s one of those rare books with almost universal appeal: it will make you laugh, cry and break your heart’ - The Bookseller

The Blurb:

'My name is August. I won't describe what I look like. Whatever you're thinking, it's probably worse.'

Auggie wants to be an ordinary ten-year-old. He does ordinary things - eating ice cream, playing on his Xbox. He feels ordinary - inside. But ordinary kids don’t make other ordinary kids run away screaming in playgrounds. Ordinary kids aren’t stared at wherever they go.

Born with a facial anomoly, Auggie has been home-schooled by his parents his whole life. Now, for the first time, he’s being sent to a real school - and he’s dreading it. All he wants is to be accepted - but can he convince his new classmates that he’s just like them, underneath it all?

WONDER is a funny, frank, astonishingly moving debut to read in one sitting, pass on to others, and remember long after the final page.

I have been really luck to be able to offer a giveaway of this great book plus a copy of  365 days of Wonder. All you have to do is enter via the rafflecopter below. Good Luck! 

Just one act of kindness can make an impact.

Read the book. Be inspired. Pass it on.

And always #choosekind.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Weekly Wrap up - Week 26 - 16/11/14

This week has been quiet on the reading front in lots of different ways. I have managed to get Laryngitis this week, which really sucks. I have been unable to go to work as I am expected to talk a lot in my job. So I have managed to catch up with doing some work from home and I have been looking forward to spending this week reading. 

Lately I have really struggled with my reading and been in a huge slump. I am hoping to read a few shorter stories to try and bring back my reading mojo. I have such a lot of brilliant Christmas books I want to read and I just don't have any motivation to read them at the moment. 

This week I have been sent: 

This week I have bought: 

Books I have read this week:
Finished The Great Christmas knit off. - Review to come soon!

I hope you all had a great reading week and thanks for stopping by!