31 January 2015

January Wrap Up

Hello everyone! How has 2015 been for you so far? Weather-wise, it's been terrible here. For the first two weeks we had 80mph winds and loads of rain, and now we've got snow. The snow isn't too bad, but it's the ice that comes when it melts that's difficult to deal with.

Book-wise, January has been a pretty good reading month. I managed to read 17 books this month - 4 of which were 5* and only one was a 1*. So all in all, a great reading month.
3. Talon by Julie Kagawa 
6. Ignite by Sara B. Larson 
8. Reborn by Jennifer Rush 
13. Hero by Samantha Young 
14. Clipped Wings by Helena Hunting 
15. All Fall Down by Ally Carter 
16. Rebound by Noelle August 
17. The Last Time We Say Goodbye by Cynthia Hand 

The best book I read in January has to be The Last Time We Say Goodbye by Cynthia Hand. It's such an emotional and heartbreaking book, it's beautifully written, and Cynthia Hand did a fantastic job with such a sensitive subject.

I'm still in the middle of reading Invaded by Melissa Landers which I doubt I'll get finished today, so it'll be my first read of February. I've decided that I'm not going to do TBR's this year since I never stick to them, but I think Brittany said something about possibly buddy reading Billy and Me by Giovanna Fletcher? So that's one possible read in February!

There are a few new releases in February that I'll be getting to as soon as the come out like: Better When He's Bold by Jay Crownover; The Ruby Circle by Richelle Mead and The Return by Jennifer L. Armentrout.

What was your favourite read in January and what February release are you most looking forward to?

30 January 2015

Picture Perfect by Holly Smale

Picture Perfect by Holly Smale
Series: Geek Girl #3
Publisher: Harper Collins
Publication Date: June 5th 2014
Source: Bought

"My name is Harriet Manners, and I'll always be a geek." 

Harriet Manners knows more facts that most. She knows that New York is the most populous city in the United States. She knows that its official motto is "Ever Upward". She knows that 28% of Americans believe we never landed on the moon.

But she knows nothing about modelling in the Big Apple, and how her family will cope with life stateside. Or how to "become a brand", as the models in New York put it. And, even more importantly, what to do when the big romantic gestures aren't coming from your boyfriend...

Does geek girl go too far this time?

The Geek Girl series has to be one of my all time favourite Middle Grade series. I adore Harriet Manners. She's super smart, hilarious and a model - she's just such an amazing main character. Picture Perfect was another fantastic book from Holly Smale that had me laughing out loud at all the hilarious situations Harriet found herself in.

So in Picture Perfect Harriet has been out of modelling for quite a while and is enjoying spending time with her friends again. So when her father drops the news that they'll be moving to New York, Harriet isn't particularly over the moon. But when it seems like her friends can't wait for her to go, Harriet decides to embrace the move. When Wilbur phones and asks Harriet to come for a modelling job, she jumps at the chance. But Harriet gets herself into trouble with the people she loves the most and attracts the attention of a guy who isn't her boyfriend.

Harriet is one of my favourite characters. She's a geek and she embraces it. Harriet is determined to have a fantastic time in New York, but when everything seems to keep going wrong, she decides to go off on her own and have her own New York adventure. She's hilarious, smart and such an interesting character. I adore her.

I adored her adventures in New York - even if they did get her into quite a bit of trouble. Harriet is so determined to have a fantastic time that she goes to any lengths to do it. I loved seeing Harriet and Nick together because they're just so adorable. Harriet allows herself to be influenced by another girl who says she's trying to help Harriet, but Harriet only ends up hurting people and getting herself into even more trouble. 

The ending was adorable and I honestly can't wait for the next installment! I need more Harriet Manners in my life!

Overall, Picture Perfect was another fantastic installment in the Geek Girl series. I was laughing throughout the whole book and it's probably my favourite one so far.

29 January 2015

The Rain by Virginia Bergin

The Rain by Virigina Bergin
Series: The Rain #1
Publisher: Macmillan
Publication Date: July 17th 2014
Source: Macmillan [Netgalley]

One minute sixteen-year-old Ruby Morris is having her first proper snog with Caspar McCloud in a hot tub, and the next she's being bundled inside the house, dripping wet, cold and in her underwear. Not cool. As she and Caspar shiver in the kitchen, it starts to rain. They turn on the radio to hear panicked voices -- 'It's in the rain... it's in the rain...'

That was two weeks ago, and now Ruby is totally alone. People weren't prepared for the rain, got caught out in it, didn't realize that you couldn't drink water from the taps either. Even a drip of rain would infect your blood, and eat you from the inside out. Ruby knows she has to get to London to find her dad, but she just doesn't know where to start ...After rescuing all the neighbourhood dogs, Ruby sets off on a journey that will take her the length of the country -- surviving in the only way she knows how.

I'd been dying to read The Rain ever since I heard about it last year, so when it popped up on Netgalley the other week I jumped at the chance to get it. I was really excited for it, but unfortunately, I really didn't enjoy it.

The Rain follows sixteen year old Ruby who was having her first proper snog when her and her friends are quickly shepherded inside. It starts to rain and an emergency broadcast comes over the radio alerting everyone that there's something deadly in the rain.

Honestly, the main let down of this book for me was the main character. Ruby has lost her family and friends to the rain. She's all alone. And what does Ruby think the most important thing to do would be? Dye her hair and put on fake tan instead of trying to survive. I didn't know whether to laugh at her or bang my head against a wall. I was completely at a loss to understand her. No one in their right mind would be more obsessed with their appearance than trying to survive. She also came across as extremely childish. I had a hard time believing she was sixteen most of the time. I also couldn't believe her stupidity. It's a miracle she lived until the end of the book. 

I was actually quite interested in The Rain to begin with. The whole idea that all water is undrinkable because it's been contaminated with this space bug was pretty interesting. It was also super gory when someone did get trapped in the rain or accidentally drank contaminated water. But as soon as Ruby was on her own, I started to get a bit bored. I was getting even more annoyed with Ruby and her reluctance to survive - even when she was offered help! Ruby has no idea if her father is alive and she's decided that she's going to drive to London to find out. So she ends up in a car with Darius Spratt and BBK (a young girl Darius found who doesn't speak). At least Darius had some sense and was trying his hardest to survive and protect himself - which only earned him mocking from Ruby. Honestly, if I were Darius, I would've kicked Ruby to the curb a long time ago considering she was nothing but horrible to him (and only nice when it suited her - which was hardly ever). So they all journeyed off to London. Ruby almost died more than once because she doesn't think about anything. They had a couple of run ins with people who would do anything for uncontaminated water, and eventually ran into the army. Ruby decided she wasn't going with them and left Darius to continue to London to find her father. 

Towards the end I started to fall asleep. In all honesty, I did fall asleep... more than once. It just started to get so boring and Ruby was really grating on my nerves, so I started skimming to get to the end and find out whether she found her dad or not. The ending was terrible. After Ruby going on a huge journey to find her dad, she ends up back where she started. It was completely pointless.

Overall, The Rain was a huge let down for me. I couldn't stand the main character, the storyline was boring and made me fall asleep. I'm not even the slightest bit interested in the second book. I don't think I could stand hearing from Ruby again.

28 January 2015

Waiting on Wednesday #104

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by breaking the spine, that spotlights upcoming
releases that we're eagerly anticipating.
This week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:

The Orphan Queen by Jodi Meadows
Series: The Orphan Queen #1
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Publication Date: March 10th 2015

Wilhelmina has a hundred identities.

She is a princess. When the Indigo Kingdom conquered her homeland, Wilhelmina and other orphaned children of nobility were taken to Skyvale, the Indigo Kingdom’s capital. Ten years later, they are the Ospreys, experts at stealth and theft. With them, Wilhelmina means to take back her throne.

She is a spy. Wil and her best friend, Melanie, infiltrate Skyvale Palace to study their foes. They assume the identities of nobles from a wraith-fallen kingdom, but enemies fill the palace, and Melanie’s behavior grows suspicious. With Osprey missions becoming increasingly dangerous and their leader more unstable, Wil can’t trust anyone.

She is a threat. Wraith is the toxic by-product of magic, and for a century using magic has been forbidden. Still the wraith pours across the continent, reshaping the land and animals into fresh horrors. Soon it will reach the Indigo Kingdom. Wilhelmina’s magic might be the key to stopping the wraith, but if the vigilante Black Knife discovers Wil’s magic, she will vanish like all the others

Ever since I heard about this one I've been eagerly anticipating it. The synopsis sounds so amazing! And the early reviews for it have been fantastic too. The Orphan Queen will be my first Jodi Meadows book and I'm dying to get my hands on it!

What are you waiting on this week?

26 January 2015

A Cold Legacy by Megan Shepherd

A Cold Legacy by Megan Shepherd
Series: The Madman's Daughter #3
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Publication Date: January 27th 2015
Source: Balzer + Bray [Edelweiss]

After killing the men who tried to steal her father’s research, Juliet—along with Montgomery, Lucy, Balthazar, and a deathly ill Edward—has escaped to a remote estate on the Scottish moors. Owned by the enigmatic Elizabeth von Stein, the mansion is full of mysteries and unexplained oddities: dead bodies in the basement, secret passages, and fortune-tellers who seem to know Juliet’s secrets. Though it appears to be a safe haven, Juliet fears new dangers may be present within the manor’s own walls.

Then Juliet uncovers the truth about the manor’s long history of scientific experimentation—and her own intended role in it—forcing her to determine where the line falls between right and wrong, life and death, magic and science, and promises and secrets. And she must decide if she’ll follow her father’s dark footsteps or her mother’s tragic ones, or whether she’ll make her own.

I've been looking forward to getting around to A Cold Legacy for quite a while. I loved The Madman's Daughter, I didn't enjoyed Her Dark Curiosity as much, but I was super excited for A Cold Legacy because it involves the story of Frankenstein! 

A Cold Legacy picks up just after Her Dark Curiosity. Juliet and her friends are fleeing to Scotland after what happened in London. The police are after her and her friends, but they're heading for Elizabeth's estate where they'll be safe. But although the manor comes across as safe, Juliet fears that there's more to the manor than Elizabeth has let on.

I loved the storyline of A Cold Legacy. Elizabeth's estate was extremely creepy and I adored finding out all of the secrets and mysteries surrounding it. I also love the science aspect of this series, and learning all about the story of Frankenstein from Elizabeth and seeing her using his formulas was fascinating. There were also quite a few twists I didn't expect, especially the one involving the fortune teller - massive surprise! I was extremely intrigued by all of the new characters introduced at Elizabeth's estate - like Hensely and McKenna. I adored finding out more about them and their relationship with Elizabeth.

Juliet continued to annoy me. She hasn't grown or changed one bit. She's so focused on blaming her attracting to creepy science on her father's blood running through her veins. She's convinced there's no way to change how she feels. She's extremely naive and I wanted to shake some sense into her so many times.

I've always been a huge Montgomery fan so I was extremely happy with the storyline surrounding him and Juliet in this one. But Montgomery has been hiding some things from Juliet that cause a few problems between the two of them.

The ending was pretty explosive. I adored seeing all of Elizabeth's girls backing Juliet and seeing everyone working together to protect each other. There was a part of the ending that made me a bit sad, it was something completely unexpected. But as a whole, I was pretty happy with how A Cold Legacy ended.

Overall, I enjoyed A Cold Legacy. It was creepy, full of mystery and intriguing new characters. It didn't come close to beating The Madman's Daughter - which will always be my favourite - but it was still a solid ending to the series. 

25 January 2015

Showcase Sunday #92

Showcase Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits and Tea. This meme allows book bloggers to show off the books they collected over the last week!

Hello everyone! How has your week been? Mines has been a pretty quick week. I've been out, working and I've also managed to get quite a bit of reading done this week which I'm happy with.

Bookwise, this week I haven't bought any books, but I did get approved for a couple on Netgalley and one on Edelweiss for a blog tour!

Hero by Samantha Young
The Rain (The Rain #1) by Virginia Bergin

Rebound (Boomerang #2) by Noelle August

What books did you get this week?

23 January 2015

Camp Payback by J. K. Rock

Camp Payback by J. K. Rock
Series: Camp Boyfriend #2
Publisher: Spencer Hill Contemporary
Publication Date: April 29th 2014
Source: Spencer Hill Contemporary [Netgalley]

Alex has big plans for camp this year, starting with making it the best summer ever. Having fun and breaking some rules will get her the payback she wants against her parents and her ex-boyfriend. Because of his disgusting texts, she's headed to a super strict all-girls school in the fall.

Then she meets Javier and revenge doesn't seem nearly as important as getting to know the troubled loner determined to keep a low profile at camp. But Alex's trouble-magnet personality and Javier's need to stay in the background don't mix nearly as well as their irresistible chemistry.

With her home life eroding under her feet and her last year of summer camp speeding to a close, Alex wants to make her mark on the world and squeeze every bit of fun out of her time with Javier. Too bad her old plans for revenge turn back on her just in time to ruin everything. Will she lose Javier too?

I went into Camp Payback with extremely low expectations after Camp Boyfriend (which I didn't really enjoy) and surprisingly, I ended up enjoying it. 

Camp Payback is a companion novel to Camp Boyfriend. It follows the same group of characters - minus the Camp Boyfriend main characters - at Camp Jupiter. Alex has big plans for this summer. She's determined to rebel against the Wholesome Family image that her family likes to put on and have a bit of fun for once, before she's shipped off to boarding school. Javier is on his last chance and is given a job in the kitchen at Camp Jupiter for the summer. He's determined to keep his head down and stay out of trouble, but then he meets Alex. Alex and Javier both have a lot to loose, but they can't seem to stay away from each other.

Alex was a breath of fresh air compared to Lauren. Alex actually had a bit of depth that made me feel a bit bad for her sometimes. She's forced into promoting a Wholesome Family image, but her parents make money off of writing about her failings as a perfect child. I felt so bad for Alex. She's basically not allowed to have any fun or a life because of her father. And because of him, she feels like she needs to rebel at camp this year - her last hurrah. Alex has a lot of passion, but it gets suppressed under her father's rule, so it was really nice to get to see her doing things she loved.

Javier is extremely misunderstood. He's been passed off from foster home to foster home because his mother is in jail for writing some bad checks. He does everything he can to try to see her, but it only gets him in trouble. He's on his last chance when his neighbour takes pity on him and gets him a job. Javier is such a sweet and caring guy. He was honestly do anything for his mother and he's working so hard to keep his head down and not get into trouble. He's got a bit of a temper, but it's mainly because he hasn't been taught how to deal with it - which Bam-Bam sets out to fix.

Alex had a lot of learning to do a camp this year. She had to learn to open her eyes and ears, see everyone else around her and listen to them for once. Vijay is basically harassing Alex this year (after they were all over each other in the previous book) and I just couldn't work out what his deal was. He seems to truly hate Alex and he was determined to make her miserable. Unlike in the previous book, Alex's friends didn't go in a huff with her - like the did with Lauren. It was nice to actually see them acting like friends instead of 5 year olds. 

The ending was a very perfect, tied with a bow ending. Honestly, I expected it because of the way the book was going, but I could have done with a realistic ending.

Overall, Camp Payback was an improvement on Camp Boyfriend with characters I actually cared about who had some depth and real problems. I kind of want to read Camp Forget Me Not because I like Kayla (and her story sounds interesting), but I won't be buying it any time soon.

22 January 2015

Reborn by Jennifer Rush

Reborn by Jennifer Rush
Series: Altered #1
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: January 6th 2015
Source: Bought

The Branch is in shambles, but Anna, Sam, Cas, and Nick can't rest easy. Remnants of the organization lurk unseen and the flashbacks to their old lives are only getting stronger - especially Nick's.

Following scattered memories and clues from his Branch file, Nick sets off alone in search of answers and in search of the girl who haunts his dreams. But the sleepy town where she lives in full of secrets and Nick soon learns that uncovering their shared past may have deadly consequences.

Reborn was probably my most anticipated book in this series because it's Nick's book! And after Erased I've been dying to get into Nick's head and discover more about his past. So obviously when Reborn showed up, I dove straight into it. 

Reborn is set after Erased and we follow Nick on his journey to find out more about his past and more about the girl he's having flashbacks about. Elizabeth was kidnapped - along with her mother - a few years ago and she'll never forget Gabriel - the guy who saved her.

Reborn was told in alternating chapters of Nick and Elizabeth (which I'll admit I didn't notice to begin with and I got slightly confused!). 

Nick was just his usual jackass, stubborn self. But now we know he acts like that to cover up his feelings and keeps everything bottled up - because he's Nick.. We still don't know a lot about Nick - apart from what he's told Anna in previous books - so when he decided to track down the girl in his flashbacks, I couldn't wait to find out what it led to! He definitely stayed true to his character but he did start to loosen up a bit and I enjoyed getting to see happy Nick.

Elizabeth is still haunted by her kidnapping and what happened to her. She tries to function and have a normal life, but the littlest thing can remind her of her kidnapping and set off her anxiety attacks. I felt bad for her. She has absolutely no idea why she was kidnapped, or if her mother is alive. She's trying her hardest to put everything behind her, but it's not that easy when she doesn't understand it.

Nick sets off in search of the girl in his flashbacks. He heads off to Illinois, and he starts to dig around looking for connections to his past - after a few drinks of course, it's Nick. Nick quickly finds out that Elizabeth Creed is the girl he's looking for, and he hunts her down. Elizabeth remembers that Nick saved her, and she's willing to give him a chance even if she doesn't completely trust him. Nick tries to find out why Elizabeth would have been captured by the branch and he keeps coming up blank, until he decides to give Trev a call. 

Getting to hear from Nick and seeing how he reacts to finding out more information about his past was my favourite part of the book. I've been dying to get inside Nick's head for quite a while to see what he's really like - since we've really only seen the hard exterior he puts on. Hearing from Elizabeth was kind of hard at times. The kidnapping really affected her and she struggles to have a normal life. She's found her own ways of dealing with everything, but that doesn't stop the anxiety attacks. She's desperate to know what happened to her mother - whether she's alive or not - and she's constantly terrified that the people who kidnapped her will come back to finish her off. 

There wasn't as much action in this one as the previous books, but when there was some action, it was awesome. I love seeing all of the boys - and Anna - fight because they're so badass and it's kind of amazing. Even Elizabeth surprised me. I was extremely surprised with the twists that Rush threw at me towards the end, I hadn't expected either betrayals, but one of them surprised me more than the other. Also, finding out what The Branch had been up to in Illinois and why Elizabeth had been taken in the first place was extremely interesting. I felt so bad for Elizabeth when she found out the truth. The ending was jam-packed full of action and characters being awesome, and Anna saving the boys lives - again! I'm hoping that there's going to be another book because there's still a ton of stuff to be uncovered, and I really want a book about Cas! Please let the be a book about Cas! PLEASE.

Overall, Reborn has been my favourite book of the series - so far. I really enjoyed uncovering more about The Branch; learning more about Nick and also seeing Anna, Sam & Cas again because I just adore them all. I need more.

21 January 2015

Waiting on Wednesday #103

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by breaking the spine, that spotlights upcoming
releases that we're eagerly anticipating.
This week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:

Unleashed by Sophie Jordan
Series: Uninvited #2
Publisher: HarperTeen
Publication Date: February 24th 2015

Davy has spent the last few months trying to come to terms with the fact that she tested positive for the kill gene HTS (also known as Homicidal Tendency Syndrome). She swore she would not let it change her, and that her DNA did not define her... but then she killed a man.

Now on the run, Davy must decide whether she'll be ruled by the kill gene or if she'll follow her heart and fight for her right to live free. But with her own potential for violence lying right beneath the surface, Davy doesn't even know if she can trust herself.

I completely adored Uninvited when I read it last year, it was such a fantastic and thrilling read and the ending left me wondering what was in store for Davy next. And the release date is so close now! I can't wait to get my hands on Unleashed!

What are you waiting on this week?

19 January 2015

Never Never by Colleen Hoover & Tarryn Fisher

Never Never by Colleen Hoover & Tarryn Fisher
Series: Never Never #1
Publisher: Hoover Ink
Publication Date: January 8th 2015
Source: Bought

Best friends since they could walk.

In love since the age of fourteen.

Complete strangers since this morning.

He'll do anything to remember.

She'll do anything to forget.

Wow is this hard book to review since it's not actually a full book, but half of one. Honestly, if I'd known this was part 1 of a story I wouldn't have started it, but I was a third of the way through when I found out.

Never Never follows Charlie and Silas who both lose their memories in the middle of class, but the strange thing is they remember everything apart from who they are, what they've done and who their family is. 

I was expecting big things from Never Never. With one of the authors being Colleen Hoover, I was obviously expecting big things. But honestly, Never Never just didn't live up to my expectations. The main problem I had with it was that I never connected with the characters at all. I felt nothing towards them. Although both Charlie and Silas did managed to make me annoyed at them. From what we learnt about them, they were supposed to be this perfect couple who were completely in love. But, they were both cheating on each other... Well, obviously they didn't love each other that much. In my opinion, neither Charlie nor Silas had any sort of personality for me to connect with, which is extremely unfortunate because I was really looking forward to this book.

The only thing that kept me reading - and that will make me read part 2 - is the mystery. Why did Charlie and Silas forget only things relevant to their lives? Why both of them? What happened with their fathers? What was with the blank card? Also, the ending left me with a lot more questions as well that I'm dying to know the answers too. There's something bigger going on here and I'm unsure whether it's something magical or something supernatural - I'm swaying more towards supernatural - but I'm hoping it'll be something awesome enough to justify reading part 2.

Overall, Never Never didn't wow me. The mystery was the only thing the book had going for it (imo), but it is enough to make me want part 2 of the story so that says something. 

18 January 2015

Showcase Sunday #91

Showcase Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits and Tea. This meme allows book bloggers to show off the books they collected over the last week!

Hello everyone! This week has been a pretty slow week for me, but it's been a good one. It snowed this week! I'm actually really loving the snow, it's making a nice change from the 70mph winds we were getting. I also got addicted to Suits this week. I've hardly done any reading this week because I've been watching it. Oh well!

Bookwise, my two pre-orders from TBD showed up!

• physical
Ensnared (Splintered #3) by A. G. Howard
Reborn (Altered #3) by Jennifer Rush

What books did you get this week?

16 January 2015

Ignite by Sara B. Larson

Ignite by Sara B. Larson
Series: Defy #2
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Publication Date: December 30th 2014
Source: Bought

Murder, kidnapping, and forbidden romance abound in this thrilling sequel to Sara B. Larson's acclaimed YA debut, DEFY.

Alexa continues to harbor a secret love for the newly crowned King Damian, yet she remains by his side as his guard and ever committed to helping him rebuild Antion and reclaim the hope of Antion's people. However, when a new threat to Damian and his kingdom emerges, and blame is cast on the once friendly nation of Blevon, Alexa knows things are not what they seem. Once again the fate of her country hangs in the balance. Will Alexa be able to protect her king and uncover the true enemy -- before it's too late?

The wait for this book has been awful! I read Defy back in 2013, and I've been dying to get my hands on the sequel ever since. I couldn't wait to see what was going to happened after that ending, and I was dying to know whether my ship would work out or not.

Ignite picks up not too long after the end of Defy. Alexa is sticking to her guns and refusing to be with Damian; Damien is giving Alexa the cold shoulder because he thinks her reasons are stupid and Rylan is still following Alexa around like a lovesick puppy and hoping she'll magically fall in love with him. A Delegation from Denaii kingdom shows up. Lady Vera (from Denaii) attempts to woo Damian. As soon as they have left to clean up, an attempt is made on Damian's life by what appears to be Blevon soliders. Alexa knows something it going on, but she can't quite put her finger on it. It's up to her to try and uncover what's going on before it's too late.

Alexa is still as awesome and badass as she was in Defy. She's more concerned about her appearance now because of the scar on face that she acquired from her battle with Iker. The only thing that bugged me about her was her struggle between Damian and Rylan - when she clearly cares about one of them more. But she still has her moments when she considers going for the other guy which left me shouting "MAKE UP YOUR MIND". She's beaten and battered after the battle and has lost a bit of confidence in herself.

Damian is his usual sweet, caring self when he wasn't freezing Alexa out for her decision. But he only did it to stop himself from being torn apart every time he looked at her. Damian is questioning his position as King as he doesn't think he's cut out for it. He's trying so hard to make everything right, but things just seem to be getting worse.

Rylan basically just follows Alexa around and tries constantly to make her love him which got extremely boring. I don't think he'll ever get that Alexa will never love him like he loves her. He's a nice enough guy, but he has an insane jealous streak.

From the moment the Denaii delegation arrives, everything basically goes to shit. There's something odd about Lady Vera and everything that's happening to her is way too coincidental with their arrival for it to have been anyone else but the Denaii's. Honestly, I was wondering what took everyone so long to figure out what was going on - it was pretty obvious. Lady Vera set her sights on Damian, and she tries to distract him. Jax (Damian's half-brother) is kidnapped and all signs are pointing to Blevon again, but neither Alexa nor Damian believe it was them. The ransom note for Jax offered a swap for Alexa. Alexa and Rylan head off in search of Jax to find out what's really going on, and hopefully save Jax.

The last quarter of the book was probably my favourite. The action at the end was brilliant - I love seeing Alexa fight - and I was extremely interested to find out why everyone wanted Alexa. But, the main reason I loved the last quarter was a certain moment on pg 209 which had me squealing and jumping for joy! Happy tears may also have been shed. There were quite a few revelations at the end of the book and Alexa is keeping them a secret for now. I honestly can't wait to see how everything is going to play out now (please don't break my heart, Sara!).

Overall, Ignite was a superb follow up to Defy. It was full of action, twists and some fantastic revelations that set up the next book perfectly. I can't wait to get my hands on it!

15 January 2015

Camp Boyfriend by J. K. Rock

Camp Boyfriend by J. K. Rock
Series: Camp Payback #1
Publisher: Spencer Hill Contemporary
Publication Date: July 2nd 2013
Source: Spencer Hill Contemporary [Netgalley]

The summer of her dreams is about to get a reality check.

They said it couldn't be done, but geeky sophomore Lauren Carlson transformed herself into a popular girl after moving to a new school halfway across the country. Amazing what losing her braces and going out for cheerleading will do. Only trouble is, the popular crowd is wearing on Lauren's nerves and she can't wait to return to summer camp where she's valued for her brain instead of her handsprings. She misses her old friends and most of all, her long time camp-only boyfriend, Seth. This year she intends to upgrade their relationship to year-round status once she's broken up with her new, jock boyfriend, Matt. He doesn't even begin to know the real her, a girl fascinated by the night sky who dreams of discovering new planets and galaxies.

But Matt isn't giving her up without a fight. As he makes his case to stay together, Lauren begins to realize his feelings run deeper than she ever would have guessed. What if the guy she thought she was meant to be with forever isn't really The One? Returning to Camp Juniper Point was supposed to ground her uprooted life, but she's more adrift than ever. Everything feels different and soon Lauren's friends are turning on her and both guys question what she really wants. As summer tensions escalate, Lauren wonders if she's changed more than she thought. Will her first big discovery be herself?

Camp Boyfriend was an impulse read after finishing my previous book - because I desperately needed something light and fluffy, which is exactly what Camp Boyfriend was for me.

Camp Boyfriend follows our main character Lauren. In the past year, Lauren has had a complete make over (appearance and personality) after moving across the country, and she's finally one of the popular kids. Lauren has a steady boyfriend - Matt - who's a jock, but she's constantly thinking about Seth - her camp love. Lauren intends to break up with Matt before leaving for camp so she can be with Seth, but her plans change when Matt decides to come to camp with her. While she's at camp, Lauren realises that she doesn't know herself as well as she thought and decides she has to discover herself before she can think about boys.

Honestly, I hated Lauren. Absolutely hated her. She's one of the most annoying characters ever. She was constantly going between Seth and Matt: One minute she was making out with Matt in the rain, and the next she was spending a night stargazing with Seth. This girl could not make up her mind and it annoyed the hell out of me. I never felt any connection to her because she basically had no personality. She kept changing how she acted and I just really didn't like her.

And then we have Seth, Lauren's famous camp boyfriend who I'd love to punch. Lauren sugar-coats Seth and makes him sound like such a sweet guy when really, he's a dick. Within minutes of Lauren and Matt arriving at camp, Seth goes in a huff with her and disappears for a couple of days because "he can't stand the sight of Lauren with another guy". And he said this after he made her feel guilty for being with someone else when it was HIS idea to break up every summer after camp! What an ass. There wasn't a single second I was lured in by him and his charm, and I couldn't believe Lauren was.

Matt is the only reason I kept reading this book. He comes across as the usual jock, but that's because Lauren never even gave him the opportunity to open up, mainly because she wasn't being her true self either.  Matt tries his hardest to get to know Lauren, but all she can think about is Seth and basically closes herself off to Matt. But Matt doesn't give up. He knows there's a chance for him and Lauren, they just need to actually get to know each other. Alright, some of the things that Matt comes out with are slightly cheesy, but whatever. I could forgive his cheesiness because he's just such a sweetheart. A genuinely nice and lovely guy. He deserved better.

The story revolved around Lauren's constant waivering between both boys, and also her journey to discovering herself. The boy problems started to get on my nerves because it was extremely clear which guy was perfect for Lauren, but she couldn't see it! And she almost completely messed everything up. Lauren's journey to discovering herself was actually kind of interesting. She didn't fit in completely with her old friends, or the popular group at camp because she was pretending to be someone else. So I did enjoy seeing her journey and the effects of her decisions, but I still didn't like her.

There was something else that pissed me off about this book: every single character was extremely judgmental. No matter how many times Lauren told her friends she hadn't slept with Matt they always responded with eye-rolls, smirks and, my personal favourite, "But who is going to believe you haven't done it with Matt? ... And you expect anyone to believe you're not putting out?". I almost lost it at this point. This is the kind of behaviour I can't stand. So what if she's been with Matt for 8 months. Why does that mean she has to have had sex with him? Honestly, Lauren's friends were awful people. They turned their backs on her for being with Matt, and then for being with Seth. And also for breaking a dream-catcher and losing a volleyball match. It's no wonder she fell in with the popular girls, they were actually a lot nicer (minus Hannah).

The ending was perfect for the characters involved - I still firmly believe that Matt deserves better after all the shit he was put through - and it made me breathe a sigh of relief. 

Overall, Camp Boyfriend was a fluffy read full of characters I didn't like (minus Matt), but strangely enough I'm still looking forward to reading the next book - mostly because it follows a different character that I want to know more about. 

14 January 2015

Waiting on Wednesday #102

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by breaking the spine, that spotlights upcoming
releases that we're eagerly anticipating.
This week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:

The Ruby Circle by Richelle Mead
Series: Bloodlines #6
Publisher: Razorbill
Publication Date: February 10th 2015

Sydney Sage is an Alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of humans and vampires. They protect vampire secrets—and human lives.

After their secret romance is exposed, Sydney and Adrian find themselves facing the wrath of both the Alchemists and the Moroi in this electrifying conclusion to Richelle Mead’s New York Times bestselling Bloodlines series. When the life of someone they both love is put on the line, Sydney risks everything to hunt down a deadly former nemesis. Meanwhile, Adrian becomes enmeshed in a puzzle that could hold the key to a shocking secret about spirit magic, a secret that could shake the entire Moroi world.

IT'S THE END OF THE BLOODLINES SERIES *cries* I've been excited for (and completely dreading) this release date because I'll have to say goodbye to some of my favourite characters. Although I only started reading Vampire Academy/Bloodlines in 2013, I've completely fallen in love with them and the characters, and I'll be extremely sad when this one is finished.

What are you waiting on this week?

12 January 2015

Between the Lives by Jessica Shirvington

Between the Lives by Jessica Shirvington
Series: No
Publisher: Hachette Children's Books
Publication Date: August 7th 2014
Source: Hachette Children's Books [Netgalley]

The perfect life or the perfect love. You choose.

For as long as she can remember, Sabine has lived two lives. Every 24 hours she shifts to her 'other' life - a life where she is exactly the same, but absolutely everything else is different: different family, different friends, different social expectations. In one life she has a sister, in the other she does not. In one life she's a straight-A student with the perfect boyfriend, in the other she's considered a reckless delinquent. Nothing about her situation has ever changed, until the day when she discovers a glitch: the arm she breaks in one life is perfectly fine in the other.

With this new knowledge, Sabine begins a series of increasingly risky experiments that bring her dangerously close to the life she's always wanted. But if she can only have one life, which is the one she'll choose?

Between the Lives is a book I've been wanting to read forever. I've been building myself up to read it from last year because I wasn't ready to deal with the subject of suicide/self-harm for personal reasons. But Between the Lives finally managed to lure me in, and it was worth it.

Between the Lives follows our main character, Sabine, who has two lives. Every night at midnight she shifts lives. Everything about her is exactly the same, but her lives are completely different. One night after Sabine has broken her arm, she's up worrying about how she's going to explain it in her other life when she shifts and, miraculously, her arm isn't broken. With this new knowledge that injuries don't shift with her, Sabine begins some more risky experiments to see what happens after she shifts. And she start to believe that she can finally have a normal life, but to have a normal life she must lose one. But which one does she choose?

I felt so bad for Sabine. Having to live two different lives with two different families and be a completely different person in each of her lives? That's a lot of hard work. Also, having to live each day twice and going through those horrible shifts? It must be absolute hell. Sabine just wants a normal life and I really felt for her. She's so alone because she can't tell anyone the truth.

The story follows Sabine through both of her lives in Roxbury & Wellesley. In Roxbury, Sabine is a bit of a rebel. Her parents don't approve of her best friend, or what she wears. She has a sister that she completely adores. In Wellesley, Sabine is popular, has the perfect boyfriend and two brothers who hardly speak to her. 

In Roxbury, Sabine's experiments led her to come clean about her two lives which lead to her parents having her committed. The events leading up to Sabine being committed were really the only parts I couldn't read. I skimmed over the self harming because although I feel alright to read about it, I didn't need all the details. As soon as Sabine was committed she came to the realization that no one will believe her. They all think she's crazy and inventing a second imaginary life because she's unhappy. And then Sabine meets Ethan - well, technically she had already met him once, but this was really the start of everything. Ethan  was just what Sabine needed. He's there for her, he looks out for her, and most of all, he listens and doesn't tell her she's crazy. Ethan begins to test Sabine to see whether she does have another life, and the test and their constant communication leads to wonderful romance.

In Wellesley, Sabine is the girlfriend of Dex - the most lusted after guy in school. Sabine believes that her life in Wellesley is the perfect life. But throughout the book, everything that she thought was perfect began unravelling very subtly. Sabine was questioning her feelings for Dex and it basically only seemed like she was with him because he was nice. She didn't seem to have any kind of romantic feelings towards him at all.

The events in both lives began to take a toll on Sabine, but it was the events in her Roxbury life that left me heartbroken and sobbing. I just couldn't believe what had happened. I'd worked out that something was wrong and that Sabine wasn't getting the whole truth, but I never expected that. Sabine's life in Wellesley took a turn for the worse as well, not as heartbreaking, but still extremely horrible. 

And then the last chapter happened. That chapter left me with a huge grin on my faces, happy tears and the hope that Sabine will get her happy life. It was a perfect ending.

Overall, Between the Lines was a fantastic read. Although it was slightly difficult for me to read at times, I still completely adored it. 

11 January 2015

Showcase Sunday #90

Showcase Sunday is a weekly meme hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits and Tea. This meme allows book bloggers to show off the books they collected over the last week.

Hello everyone! How's your week been? Mine's has actually been pretty good. I wasn't working as much this week, so I've spent most of my time lying in bed reading or catching up with TV shows. I'm actually really glad I haven't been working as much this week because the weather has been wild outside!

Bookwise, this week most of the books I ordered on New Year's Eve have shown up! There's another two still to come, and they should be here next week. I also bought a couple of books for my kindle and received two review books from netgalley!

Defy (Defy #1) by Sara B. Larson
Ignite (Defy #2) by Sara B. Larson
Finnikin of the Rock (Lumatere Chronicles #1) by Melina Marchetta
Sloppy Firsts (Jessica Darling #1) by Megan McCafferty
This Shattered World (Starbound #2) by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner

Princess of Thorns by Stacey Jay

Forged (Altered #0.5) by Jennifer Rush
Betrayed (Altered #1.5) by Jennifer Rush
Never Never (Never Never #1) by Colleen Hoover & Tarryn Fisher

Red Queen (Red Queen #1)
All Fall Down (All Fall Down #1)

What books did you get this week?