Do Not Open This Book by Andy Lee

This guy will do anything to stop you from finishing this book. From threats, bribes and reverse psychology, you name it, you’ll find it in this book. With that in mind, Are you brave enough to open this book?

I loved this book.

Written by Andy Lee for his nephew’s first birthday, this book is both heartfelt and hilarious.

I found myself giggling along whilst reading this book. I can’t imagine any child not loving this book.

The amazing illustrations by Heath McKenzie are both bright and bold, and really enhance Andy lee’s story.

I have recommended this book to all the parents I know.

If you are looking for a fun, charming and hilarious book to share with your toddler or preschooler, Do Not Open This Book by Andy Lee is the book for you.

Kingdom Of Scars by Eoin Macken

Fifteen year old Sam Leahy is trying to navigate two social worlds. The bullies from his uptight all boys private school and the teenage gang in his neighbourhood. The neighbourhood gang spends their time drinking, smoking and fighting. Sam must adopt these behaviours to be accepted. Add the hormones of a 15-year-old boy to this mix and Sam is out of his depth.

I adored this book.

I read Kingdom Of Scars when it first came out and I remember raving about it to everyone who would listen. When I started my blog I put it straight on the read again list so I could review it and I am so glad I did. Re reading this book was really nostalgic for me. Not only did it take me back to my own teen years but it was like catching up with an old friend.

I was drawn into this book from the first page. I had planned to pace myself with this book but that all went out the window after the first chapter and I ended up finishing it in one sitting. It was genuinely un-put-down-able.

I felt deeply connected to Sam, I honestly can’t think of another character that I have related to in the same way I related to Sam. Eoin Macken did an outstanding job in creating this character. There were times when I wasnt experiencing things with Sam, I was Sam. I felt like I was watching scenes from my own teen years play out on the pages in front of me.

Macken’s writing , whilst grounded in reality, paints a beautiful picture through his descriptive, almost cinematic writing style. The cinematic quality of Macken’s writing is perfectly highlighted in the scenes involving violence and teenage power struggles. These testosterone fueled scenes were so perfectly written, you could feel the tension seeping off the pages.

I honestly can’t think of another book like Kingdom Of Scars and I can’t think of a bad word to say about it.

Kingdom Of Scars by Eoin Macken is a literary treasure that is not to be missed.

 

 

10 Favourite Book Covers…

This post is pretty self-explanatory. These are my favourite book covers. The covers I am talking about in this post are the covers I have included in the image/thumbnail. Some of these books I truly love for more than their covers, unfortunately some of them only have their covers going for them in my opinion. With that off my chest let’s get into it:

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald: I didn’t like this book at all. The only reason I like the book is because of its cover. The cover I am talking about is the blue cover with the city along the bottom and the eyes and red lips highlighted. I really love this cover, it is so beautiful. It’s honestly one of my favourites (obviously). I just wished I liked the book as well as the cover.

The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt: I love love love this cover. The white cover with the 3D rip in the middle that shows the Goldfinch underneath. I am so captivated by this cover. I think it’s the Finch that gets me but I can’t be sure. Unfortunately this book is still sitting on my TBR, so I can’t say if the book lives up to its cover.

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak: I adore this book. It could be wrapped in newspaper and I would still love it. Luckily of us it has amazing covers aswell as a fantastic story. I love all of the different covers that this book has but my all-time favourite is the aged white cover that has Death dancing with Liesel. I absolutely adore this cover.

Caraval by Stephenie Garber: I loved Caraval. It definatly lived up to its awesome covers. I had been expecting the get the blue, red and black cover, which I loved, so I was happily surprised when I got the black and gold cover. Which I now adore. I wouldn’t have minded either cover, they are both truly beautiful.

The Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling: Of course Harry Potter is on this list. These books are my happy place, covers and all. There have been so many fantastic covers for this series over the years but my heart will always belong to the original covers. The cartoon covers that depict a scene from the book in side. These are the covers that I first got and are still my favourite.

The Little Prince by Antoine De Saint-Exupery: I love this book. It is a frequently read book in my life and I adore the cover. My favourite is the blue cover. Apparently I have a thing for blue covers. This is the blue cover that has the little prince standing on the moon. I think this cover so perfectly compliments the story of this book and I honestly can’t get enough of it.

The Beekeepers Secret by Josephine Moon: This book was fantastic. I was genuinely surprised by how much I loved this book. An its cover is perfect. I’m not sure what it is about this cover but it gives me the warm and fuzzies. The colours, the honey stand, honestly the cover is just perfect. The cover perfectly reflects the story and I love them both equally.

The Stand by Stephen King: I am a huge King fan and my favourite cover is by far The Stand. The completely uncut edition’s cover with the dead bodies lying on the road completely freaks me out, and I love it. This book is so creepy, so to have a cover that is as creepy as the story being told is brilliant.

The Other F-Word by Natasha Friend: I loved this cover and I went into this book with high hopes, but I was thoroughly disappointed with it. I love the cover design, with faceless family members sitting on the couch. I though it was really intriguing given the synopsis of the book. As in turned out, at least in my opinion, the cover was the best part of this book.

The Song Of Us by J.D. Barrett: This cover is so simplistic yet completely beautiful. The full red cover with just the title and a few little illustrations; the hearts and musical notes. Given how amazing this book is, I think the cover is absolutely perfect. This book is one of the best books I have read all year and the cover perfectly compliments the story being told and well deserves a place on this list.

Well that’s it from me, let me know your favourite coves in the comments. Untill next time…

Happy Reading…

❤ Gem

The Dream Walker by Victoria Carless

Lucy Hart is counting down the days till Graduation, so she can escape her small Queensland fishing hamlet home; Digger’s Landing. As Graduation nears, Lucy’s plans begin to falter. Her best friend Polly is dropping out of school to help pay the bills, and Tom has been sent away to boarding school, and then there is the fact that Lucy has started dream walking.

I honestly don’t know how I feel about this book.

The writing was beautiful albeit a bit slow for my liking. The dream sequences were so beautifully written, they had an almost cinematic quality about them.

There was a nice array of diverse characters to get to know, with different yet similar mindsets and voices to experience.

The story itself was interesting, seeing Lucy become more open-minded and start to see things through more adult eyes was a lovely thing to read about.

With all off these great qualities im still perplexed as to why I didn’t love this book.

I had trouble connecting with Lucy, and I think that made it difficult to really care about what was going on. I was disappointed with the character of Tom also. ‘The Accident’ kept getting brought up but was never delved into and I felt his character had so many more layers to be explored, but was just rushed out of the story.

I think this book has a lot of great elements that readers will definitely fall in love with, but for me there were just too many little issues that turned me off.

Even though I didn’t love this book I genuine think it is worth the read.

The Dream Walker by Victoria Carless is a beautiful and sometimes dark coming off age story that will hook many readers.

 

The Land Of Stories: Worlds Collide by Chris Colfer

The final book in The Land Of Stories series.

When a bridge opens, connecting the fairytale world and the otherworld, twins Alex and Conner must find a way to restore order to both worlds. With both fairytale characters and literary characters causing havoc in New York, the heroes must defeat the villans once and for all.

A fantastic conclusion to a fantastic series.

Chris Colfer has created an unforgettable series. His characters are strong, funny and completely diverse. There is someone for everyone in The Land Of Stories. Chris’ ability to take characters we know and love and give them not only a new dimension but a new life is truly a gift.

The Land Of Stories was perfectly weaved together from start to finish. I am sad to be coming to the end of this series, but I couldn’t be more thrilled with the way it ended.

Worlds Collide continued on from its predecessors without missing a beat. Having human, fairytale and literary characters converge on New York, made for a brilliantly exciting, fast paced and heart stopping read.

Getting to catch up with Alex and Conner and all of the characters we have grown to love, was like returning home from a long trip.

Worlds Collide is Chris’ best yet. The writing was superb. My connection with these characters is so strong it wasnt hard to feel what they were feeling. Chris’s writing had these characters emotions completely radiating off the pages.

Filled with the perfect mix of action, humor and heartwarming moments, The Land Of Stories: Worlds Collide leaves no stone unturned in its desire to give readers a satisfying ending.

The Land Of Stories series by Chris Colfer will be a staple on my bookshelf for a long long time.

The Land Of Stories: Worlds Collide is a perfect conclusion to a perfect series.

 

 

How To Read 100 Books A Year…

Is It Possible To Read 100 Books When You’re Insanely Busy?

The answer is yes.

Everything is possible as long as you set your mind to it.
If you love reading books but you have hundred of things to do (and there’s that Netflix show that has been seducing you to forget your books), it may seem unachievable to read a hundred or even your newly bought books this year. 
But you don’t have to deprive yourself of anything just to read books. You can work around this. So go watch that Netflix show you’ve been dying to see and afterwards read your books.
The good thing about books is that they don’t need batteries. You can read anywhere and that’s your head start.

Actually, here’s one of my favorite infographics on books written and made by Darius Foroux and Visme that you may also find useful. Darius listed here the 5 ultimate hacks to reading 100 books this year. 

 

thumbnail_How To Read 100 Books A Year Infographic

It may be already July but it’s still possible to achieve this, right? 🙂

Happy Reading…

❤ Gem

The Bombs That Brought Us Together by Brian Conaghan

Little Town native Charlie Law knows the rules of living in Little Town; no fighting, no stealing and no going out after dark. Charlie lives by these rules, your don’t want to get on the wrong side of the Rascals and Regime that run Little Town. When Pav Duda, an Old Country refugee moves onto Charlie’s block, the rules starts to get broken. Then the bombs fall, and Old Country soldiers appear, and Little Town is changed forever.

This book is a very interesting and very current read.

Brian Conaghan has done a fantastic job on this book. He perfectly captured the terror and fear of conflict through the eyes of a fourteen year old boy,

The relationship between Charlie and Pav is so beautifully written and strengthened throughout the story. I havent come across a really great, believable friendship between teenage boys in a very long time, and Charlie and Pav’s friendship was a joy to read.

I found this book a bit slow at the start but as I got more invested in this story and these characters I realised that it was necessary to have this slow build up so the reader could get to know all the players and get invested in the story before chaos reigned.

As the pace accelerated, the story raced to its exciting conclusion.

I loved the end of this book, the last few chapters of this book were so beautifully written, I was completely hooked.

Brian Conaghan’s ability to bring a smile to your face whilst reading a book about war and political upheaval is truly a gift.

The Bombs That Brought Us Together by Brian Conaghan is a fantastic book for Young Adult readers and Adult readers alike.

Dont miss out on this wonderful reading experience.

 

But Then I Came Back by Estelle Laure

After hitting her head, Eden fell into a month-long coma. Now that she is awake Eden must learn how to do basic tasks like talking, walking and eating, Whilst this is hard enough Eden has the eerie feeling that she has brought something back with her from the in-between. While recovering in the hospital, Eden meets Joe, who is sitting vigil at his best friend Jaz’s bedside. What Eden doesn’t tell Joe is that she knows Jaz, knows her from the in-between. After spending time with Joe, Eden decides to tell him that not only does she know Jaz, but she might know a way to communicate with her. As Eden and Joe explore the unknown, they open themselves up to the beauty of life, and each other.

This book took me awhile to get into, but once I did I really enjoyed it.

I am new to Estelle Laure’s writing style, it did take a few chapters to get use to it. Her writing is both beautiful and interesting. It really takes a reader on a journey.

Estelle Laure has done an amazing job in tackling trauma. The pain and loss radiates off the pages, but is perfectly balanced by the beauty and strength that Eden finds during her recovery.

As I hadn’t read ‘The Raging Light’, I was a little perplexed as to why we were seeing so much of Eden’s brother and best friend throughout this book. I would have prefered to see more of Eden and Joe. After finding out that this is a companion novel, the time spent with these characters makes sense.

But Then I Came Back by Estelle Laure is a great book, with wonderful characters that is well worth the read.

Would You Rather…

Hey everyone!

So I have noticed on heaps of blogs, the “would you rather” book tag. Since, I love “would you rather” I thought I would add it to my Wacky Wednesday posts. I hope you guys enjoy.

Rather read only a series or stand-alone books?

This one took some thought but im going to have to go with stand-alone. (Excluding Harry Potter of course).

Rather read a book whose main character is male or female?

This was an interesting question to ponder for me, while I would love to say female, after looking at my favourite books im going to have to go with male.

Rather shop only at an actual bookstore or Amazon?

Actual Bookstore all the way.

Rather all books become movies or tv shows?

I think im going to have to go with movies over tv shows. I find that when turning a book into a tv show they try to drag it out to get more seasons and it ends up ruining it.

Rather read 5 pages per day or read 5 books per week?

5 books per week. How on earth would I get my reading fill if I could only read 5 pages a day.

Rather be a professional book reviewer or an author?

While I would love to be an author I just don’t have the creativity or patience for it and I love being a book reviewer. So stick with what you love right.

Rather only read the same 20 books over and over or get to read a new book every 6 months?

If I say new book every six months can I choose an old book as my new book if I want to read it again??? Does that make sense??? If so im going with new book every six months.

Rather be a librarian or own a book store?

Well this is easy, if you have read my blog before you would know that it is my dream to one day own my very own bookstore cafe. So its book store for me.

Rather only read your favorite genre or your favorite author?

umm… I think im going to have to go with favourite genre.

Rather only read physical books or eBooks?

Physical books. I love the feel, the smell the sound. I can’t get enough of physical books.

 

Okay that’s it from me. I hope you guys enjoyed todays Wacky Wednesday post. Hit me up with your answers in the comments…

Happy Reading…

❤ Gem

The Upside Of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli

Molly Peskin-Suso has had a lot of crushes, yet she has never kissed a boy. Molly is terrified of rejection, so she crushes from a safe distance. With Molly’s mum’s getting married, and her twin sister Cassie a love struck mess, Molly is feeling lonely. With things changing rapidly in Molly’s life, and two new boys in her orbit, is Molly about to have her first kiss, maybe even her first boyfriend.

I loved this book.

After reading Simon vs the HomoSapien agenda, I had high hopes for this book, and let me tell you it didn’t disappoint.

Becky Albertalli has done a fantastic job with this book. I completely related to Molly and loved seeing her grow as the story unfolded.

As someone who went through weight insecurities during my teenage years, I loved seeing these issues dealt with by Molly, and how different characters treated Molly due to her weight.

I was also really surprised and really pleased to see mental illness explored in this story. I am someone who is medicated for mental illness issues and I was glad to see this topic being explored and not stigmatized.

I wasnt expecting this book to surpass Simon vs the homosapien agenda but it definitely did. I loved getting to catch up with Simon. albeit briefly, in this book.

Becky Albertalli’s writing style really agrees with me, and her ability to create warm, compassionate, relatable character, makes for a truly wonderful reading experience.

If you havent yet got yourself a copy of this book, do it now. You will regret missing out on this fantastic reading experience.

The Upside Of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli is not to be missed.