February Wrap Up…

Welcome to my February Wrap Up. I had a great reading month, finishing 21 books (only 1 from my TBR). I read heaps of children’s books this month so that pushed my number up.

I have reviews coming for all of these books so as usual this is just going to be a brief run down on each book I read.

Without further ado, let’s get into my February Wrap Up…

New York Nights by C.J. Duggan: Second standalone book in the A Heart of the City series. I wasn’t sure if I was going to like this book, I’m glad I was wrong. It was a really enjoyable read. With a great plot, interesting characters, secrets and romance, I didn’t want it to end.

Harry Potter: The Character Vault by Jody Revenson: I love Harry Potter so it wasn’t surprising to me that I adored this book. A fabulous collection of photographs, sketches and behind the scenes information about the characters of the eight Harry Potter films. A must have for any Harry Potter fan.

Marge In Charge by Isla Fisher: I wasn’t sure what to expect going into this book, so I was pleasantly surprised with how wonderful it was. Three funny and sweet stories about a wacky babysitter, what’s not to love. Definitely one to check out.

Marge and the Pirate Baby by Isla Fisher: After reading Marge in Charge I had high hopes for this book, and let me say I wasn’t disappointed. Three new crazy adventures with Marge that leave you smiling long after you finish the book. 

Paris Lights by C.J. Duggan: First standalone book in the A Heart of the City series. After reading New York Nights I was really looking forward to this book. It wasn’t quite as good as New York Night but it was still a really enjoyable read. Great descriptions, romance and an interesting plot made for an easy read.

Caraval by Stephanie Garber. I Was so excited to get my hands on this book and when I finally did, it didn’t disappoint. Filled with magic and mayhem, murder and mystery, I was hooked from start to finish. With the bond of sisterhood driving the plot I could completely relate to the journey Tella and Scarlet were on. I couldn’t put this book down. Will be reading this book many times in the future.

The Land of Stories: The Wishing Spell by Chris Colfer: The first book in The Land Of Stories Series. I Loved this book. A magical journey through all the fairy tales we know and love. This book was fun, fresh and fabulous. I cannot wait to read the rest of this series.

The Marvellous Roald Dahl Library: This collection contains 14 great Roald Dahl books. The Twits, The Magic Finger, The Great Mouse Plot, James and the Giant Peach part 1 and part 2, Marvellous Joke Boke, The Giraffe and the Pelly and Me, Fantastic Mr Fox, Mischief and Mayhem, Danny the Champion of the World part 1 and part 2, Splendiferous Quiz Book, The Dahlmanac, Esio Trot. So glad I got this collection. Its wonderful.

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Marge In Charge & Marge And The Pirate Baby by Isla Fisher

Its double review time.

Jake and Jemima have a new babysitter; Marge. Marge is a rainbow haired mischief-maker who loves to make a mess, bend the rules and tell magnificent stories. When not regaling Jake and Jemima with her fantastic stories, Marge can be found cooking up chocolate soup or conducting the band in the playground at Jake and Jemima’s school. Marge is definitely the bestest most funnest babysitter ever.

Marge is back in charge in Marge and the pirate Baby, she will have to use all of her skills to tame Zara the Pirate Baby. With Jake, Jemima and now Pirate Baby Zara, Marge has her work cut out for her at home, at the pool and most importantly at Uncle Desmond and Aunt Annie’s wedding. With her rainbow hair and mischievous personality there is plenty of fun when Marge is in charge.

These books were awesome. Written by Isla Fisher and illustrated by Eglantine Ceulemans, each book contains 3 wonderful stories. Isla Fisher’s fantastic story telling is perfectly complimented by Eglantine Ceulemans’ illustrations.

I really enjoyed the quirky unpredictable characters, I was smiling from beginning to end. Setting the book out into three short stories was a great idea. It kept the stories fresh and fast paced and it kept you wanting more.

Anyone one with children should get these books immediately. You wont regret it.

Isla Fisher has struck gold with Marge in Charge and Marge and the Pirate Baby. I cant wait to she what she does next.

 

The Christmas Spirit Is Born by J Perry Johnson

In the mountains of the North Pole, is a hidden city called Clausville. Clausville is a place where children play, where the towns people are happy and where reindeer and elves live great peacefully lives. Clauseville is also the home of Big Papa Claus and his son Little Santa. Little Santa spends his days learning amazing things; from teaching reindeer to fly, to helping his elven friends. This is the story of Santa Claus’ childhood, The story of how the Christmas Spirit was born.

I absolutely loved this book.

J. Perry Johnson has created a beautiful story, set in a magical world. The fantastic story is enhanced by the amazing illustrations by Lucy Walker.

As a children’s books this book isn’t short on joy and wonder. With a great moral woven into the tale, The Christmas Spirit is Born is both Interesting and extremely creative.

This wonderful book is sweet and extremely heartfelt. The characters are fun and loveable, the plot is new and refreshing and the illustrations are perfect.

This book may be aimed at children but I truly doubt anyone that reads it wont take something out of it.

As The Christmas Spirit Is Born is the first book in the Little Santa series I am beyond excited to get more awesome christmas joy from J.Perry Johnson. I cant wait to get my hands on the next book.

This book is a definite keeper. I will be adding this book to my christmas book shelf, to enjoy over and over again in the future.

A Mad Zombie Party by Gena Showalter 

Book 4 in the White Rabbit chronicles.

Ali, Cole and the slayers thought they has won the war against Anima Industries. In the last clash against Anima, the slayers lost many of their closest friends. For Frosty, there is one particular loss he can’t recover from. When Anima Industries rises from the grave, Frosty and the slayers must team up with rogue slayer Camilla whose betrayal led to the deaths of their friends. Can Frosty and the slayers work with Camilla to survive the latest Anima attack.

I have mixed feeling about this book. I enjoyed getting to see the characters that I had grown to love, and Gena Showalter’s great descriptions gave this book a great cinematic quality.

On the other hand, I would have been happy for the series to have been a trilogy. This book sort of felt unnecessary.

Having the book told from two perspectives, Frosty and Milla, made the story telling very disjointed and less emotive than the previous books.

After getting invested in Ali and her point of view, this writing style and the voices of Frosty and Milla were harder to relate to.

While I did really enjoy getting to catch up with Ali and Cole and the other slayers, overall I just didn’t enjoy this book.

 

The Queen Of Zombie Hearts by Gena Showalter 

Book 3 of the White Rabbit chronicles.

The war is here.

Ali Bell believes she has faced the worst the world has to offer and come out the other side relatively unharmed, what Ali doesnt realise is that the worst is yet to come. Just as Ali decides she is ready to take the next step with her zombie slayer boyfriend Cole Holland, Her world comes crashing down. Ali is more determined than ever to bring down Amina Industries, even if it means sacrificing her own life to save the people she loves.

Gena Showalter has done it again.

The Queen of Zombie Hearts is filled with fresh secrets and intrigue, while keeping true to the heart and soul of the series. The characters have had a natural growth through the series, which some amazing character arcs and storylines being explored and resolved throughout this book.

The matured characters, powerful new abilities and fresh secrets are woven into the plot of the story seamlessly, with the books cinematic writing drawing a reader in and holding them until the very end.

As the book comes to its climax Gena Showalter hasnt pulled her punches, her emotive writing was put to good use with some truly heartbreaking scenes.

The Queen of Zombie Hearts is a darker and more fulfilling story than its predecessors. As the characters have grown and matured the plot has taken a darker more adult turn. The more matured plot and darker undertones was a very natural progression and felt genuine and necessary.

Gena Showalter has done a marvelous job with this book. I felt happy, sad, excited and nervous all at the same time.

The Queen of Zombie Hearts is a must read and a truly fulfilling reading experience.

 

New York Nights by C.J. Duggan

Second standalone book in the A Heart Of The City Series.

Australian Sarah Williams has long dreamed of living in New York City. When a job arises for her to become an au pair for a New York Businessman, Sarah jumps at the opportunity to live her dream. Sarah’s new boss Ben Worthington is both distant and abrasive, he drowns himself in work leaving Sarah as the full-time carer of baby Grace. With a walk in robe full of secrets, Sarah has her work cut for her.

I really enjoyed this book. I wasnt sure if I would. It took me a little bit to get interested, when I did I was pleasantly surprised.

With interesting and relatable characters it wasnt hard to get swept up into this story. The only character that I found it hard to warm too was Ben, but as the story unfolded and secrets were revealed I really started to feel for him.

C.J. Duggan has done a wonderful job with this book. The plot was interesting, a little mystery, steamy situations and heartwarming scenes with baby Grace.

The descriptive almost cinematic writing really captures the city of New York. I loved seeing New York from a tourists perspective, it was both exciting and overwhelming.

As the story builds and secrets are revealed Duggan does a marvelous job in capturing the emotion of the characters. Emotion played a big role in this book and you could definitely feel it throughout the story most notably in scenes that include Grace.

I definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for a different yet beautifully told romance, with secrets and a great setting,with relatable characters and great writing.

Ok Ok Ok, Everyone should read this book.

Bring on the rest of A Heart Of The City Series.

 

 

Through The Zombie Glass by Gena Showalter 

Book 2 in the White Rabbit chronicles.

After losing her family, her home and her new friends, Ali Bell didn’t think she has anything left to lose. She was wrong.

Ali Bell is adjusting to her new life; new friends, new boyfriend Cole and of course zombie slaying. After a zombie attack Ali is thrown another curve ball. Mirrors are speaking to her, she is having visions with new slayer Gavin, but worst of all a new darkness inside of her is trying to take over. Can Ali save herself and her team of zombie slayers before the clock runs out?

Diving into this book after finishing Alice in Zombieland was a scary thought. I was so excited to get to read about the amazing characters I had grown to love, but I was afraid that this book wouldn’t stack up to is predecessor. As it turns out, I had nothing to worry about.

Gena Showalter created an awesome new story to get swept away in, while staying true to the world she has created.

All of the characters have grown over the two books. It was fantastic to see more sides to these amazing characters, with more layers being unearthed as the story unfolded.

Gena’s brilliant descriptions really enhanced the story, with more mystery and suspense woven into the plot than I expected. This addition strengthened the story and balanced well with the teen romance and drama that fills the pages.

With new characters to get to know and some awesome new slayer abilities on offer, Through the Zombie Glass was exciting from start to finish.

As seen in Alice in Zombieland a sprinkling of Alice in Wonderland tributes dot the pages of Through The Zombie Glass.

With new slayers, new powers and plenty of drama Through The Zombie Glass by Gena Showalter is not to be missed.

Alice In Zombieland by Gena Showalter 

Alice In Zombieland is the first book in the White Rabbit Chronicles.

Ali Bell has had a very sheltered life. Her father can see ‘monsters’, so Ali and her family don’t leave the house after dark. On her 16th Birthday, Ali pressures her parents into going to her 8-year-old sister Emma’s night-time dance recital. On the way home Ali and her family are in a car accidents caused by Zombies (monsters), Ali is the sole survivor. Now living with her grandparents, Ali starts at a new school, meets bad boy Cole and comes to terms with the fact that her Dad could see monsters, and she can too.

If you are expecting Alice in Wonderland but with Zombies than you are going to be disappointed. While there are definite nods to Alice in Wonderland (Alice, The White Rabbit, ect), this book isn’t a Alice in Wonderland re telling.

I was hesitant going into this book, not because of the Alice aspect but because im not a huge fan of zombies. But I am pleased to say I really enjoyed this book. By the time I got to the end I couldn’t wait to dive into book 2.

After a slowish start, Alice in Zombieland came out swinging. With a great array of characters, all with their own differing personalities there was never a dull moment.

My dislike of Zombies wasnt even an issue with this book. Gena Showalter has created a new, fresh and completely interesting take on the ‘Zombie’.

With the high school teen characters, the night-time ‘monster’ feel and the differing characters I couldn’t help but get some Buffy the Vampire Slayer vibes from this book. Which as a huge fan of Buffy, was a pleasant surprise for me.

I am really glad I read this book, it was fun, creative and really drew me in. The fact that there is multiple books in this series for me to devour is a bonus.

If you are looking for a great book with awesome characters, strong plot and fantastic writing Alice in Zombieland by Gena Showalter in the book for you.

 

February TBR…

It’s that time again… TBR…

I didn’t do too bad with my January TBR so I am setting the bar high for February. I don’t really think I will get through all ten books this month but im going to give it a try… So without further ado here is February’s TBR:

New York Nights by C.J. Duggan

Jung For Kittens by Glyn K Green

Beyond The Lens by Hannah Ellis

Pendulum by Adam Hamdy

The Light Between Oceans by M L Stedman

Insensible Loss by Paul Michael Peters

Paper Hearts And Summer Kisses by Carole Matthews

Two Decades Naked by Leigh Hopkinson

The Wardrobe Girl by Jennifer Smart

Devour by L.A. Larkin

Ok that’s it I think. The fact that holidays are over will probably hurt my reading, so I will be happy if I can read five of these books. Wish me luck.

I guess we will see how I did in February’s Wrap up. I hope you all have a great reading month, keep your eye out for reviews.

❤ Gem

 

January Wrap Up…

Welcome to my January Wrap Up. I had a great reading month, finishing 12 books (9 from my TBR). I went on a three-week holiday to the beach which greatly helped my reading.

I have reviews coming for all of these books so as usual this is just going to be a brief run down on each book I read.

Without further ado, let’s get into my January Wrap Up…

A Letter From Italy by Pamela Hart: I received an ARC of this book and im so glad I did. I absolutely loved it. Great characters, Fantastic story and an intriguing setting. I couldn’t put this book down, and I can’t stop raving about it. A must read.

Alice In Zombieland by Gena Showalter: Book 1 of the white rabbit chronicles. I was unsure of what to expect from this book, As im not a huge fan of zombies, but I really enjoyed this book. It was a little slow at the beginning but once it got going it was a great read.

Through The Zombie Glass by Gena Showalter: The second book in the white rabbit chronicles, this book was just a good as the first. The characters stayed true to who they were, the story was fresh and really added to the series.

The Queen of Zombie Hearts by Gena Showalter: The third book in the white rabbit chronicle and it didn’t disappoint. Getting to read about the character I have grown to love was joy to behold. I didn’t want this book to end.

A Mad Zombie Party by Gena Showalter: The fourth book in the white rabbit chronicles. I was disappointed with this book. It wasnt written from Ali’s point of view, so it kind of lacked the same flow and connection the first three books had. I would’ve been happy for the series to have been a trilogy.

The Christmas Spirit Is Born by J. Perry Johnson: A beautiful children’s christmas book. Wonderful story, a beautiful message and fantastic illustrations. I am looking forward to getting my hands on the rest of the series.

Tomorrow Never Knows by Jeff Apter: The Silverchair Story. I loved loved loved this book. As a huge Silverchair fan I devoured this book. Great insights, interviews and photographs. A definite keeper.

Never Tear Us Apart by Quinn Brockton: A Queer As Folk story. I really enjoyed this book. The characters were perfectly written, the story was fresh and interesting. A great book for any Queer As Folk fan.

Left For Dead by Beck Weathers: I didn’t like this book. I felt misled. The story didn’t really contained any information about the Everest disaster or the Authors recovery afterwards. Since the book is supposed to be about his journey home I felt cheated.

The Muddleheaded Wombat by Ruth Park: Really enjoyed this book. I grew up reading the Muddleheaded Wombat so re reading it as an adult was a fantastic experience.

The Magic Pudding by Norman Lindsay: Grew up reading this book but reading it as an adult was a little disappointing. I was just missing something.

The Complete Adventures Of Blinky Bill by Dorothy Wall: So glad I re read this book as an adult. It was easy to see why Blinky Bill is a national treasure. Beautiful book.

Well that’s it for my January Wrap Up. I have Reviews for most of these books coming so check them out when they go up. Untill next time, Happy Reading.

❤ Gem