These are the hyped up books that I’ve never read…

Hyped books never read

The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians Series) by Rick Riordan

Started it, didn’t like it. Can’t see what everyone is making such a fuss about!

The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey

Watched the trailer which put me off. Perhaps I’ve just read too many of the same.

Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead

Started it, didn’t like it. Wanted another Twilight and it’s not.

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

Loved the idea of this story more than its execution…  didn’t get further than the first few chapters.

Gone by Michael Grant

Started it, hated it.

The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson

A friend forced upon lent me her copy of the ‘best book ever’. Nope, not so much. Too contrived.

Knife of Never Letting Go (Chaos Walking Series) by Patrick Ness

Didn’t get through the first chapter. Talking to your dog sounds cool, but it’s really not.

Gone Girl by Gillian Fylnn

I didn’t get a chance to read Gone Girl before the movie, which wasn’t that great.

Wizard of Oz and Little House on the Prairie Series

Growing up in Zimbabwe, on a diet of Enid Blyton, I wasn’t really exposed to American Fiction. I’ve thought of giving them a chance one day…

What hyped up books have you never read?
Are there any on my list that I should try again?

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish. It’s a chance to get to know fellow bloggers. This week topic is Top Ten Hyped Up Books I’ve Never Read.

NoWhere But Here crop But

Packed full of drama, this is a sizzling-hot story set in a small town dominated by a biker community. I found this very masculine world of motorbikes, comradery, loyalty and leather difficult to relate to and I wasn’t quite convinced by Oz’s POV which didn’t flow as well as Emily’s at first.

Fortunately a few chapters later, although the macho, no-girls-allowed brotherhood didn’t appeal, I settled into the story and, if not comfortable, welcome in Katie McGarry’s new world.

A great read, but not quite as good as Pushing the Limits, my favourite Katie McGarry book.4 Star

Recommended age: 14+

Title: Nowhere but HereNoWhere But Here
Series: Thunder Road #1
Author: Katie McGarry
Publication Date: 26 May 2015
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Source: Purchased

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Seventeen-year-old Emily likes her life the way it is: doting parents, good friends, good school in a safe neighbourhood. Sure, she’s curious about her biological father — the one who chose life in a motorcycle club, the Reign of Terror, over being a parent — but that doesn’t mean she wants to be a part of his world. But when a reluctant visit turns to an extended summer vacation among relatives she never knew she had, one thing becomes clear: nothing is what it seems. Not the club, not her secret-keeping father, and not Oz, a guy with suck-me-in blue eyes who can help her understand them both.
Oz wants one thing: to join the Reign of Terror. They’re the good guys. They protect people. They’re…family. And while Emily — the gorgeous and sheltered daughter of the club’s most respected member — is in town, he’s gonna prove it to her. So when her father asks him to keep her safe from a rival club with a score to settle, Oz knows it’s his shot at his dream. What he doesn’t count on is that Emily just might turn that dream upside down.

No one wants them to be together. But sometimes the right person is the one you least expect, and the road you fear the most is the one that leads you home.  — Extract from

Blood Oath

I was really looking forward to this dark fantasy (my favourite kind!) but, although it has an imaginative plot, the story fell short in execution. I found the writing was a little repetitive and did not flow as smoothly as it could have.

In a risky move, Samantha Coville names ‘current’ stars like Taylor Lautner, who is already off the ‘hot list’. Could this date the book and put future readers off?

Did I like it? The answer is yes, but I don’t think I would pick up the sequel3 Star.

Recommended age: 13+

Title: Blood Oath Series
Series: The Secret of the Halflings #1Blood Oath cover
Author: Samantha Coville
Publication Date: 29 April 2014
Publisher: Samantha Coville
Source:Free copy from author
in exchange for honest review

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Raya Sarian has always known she was different. The water calls to her in a way that isn’t human. She has seen things that would scar anyone for life. And her father has been non-existent in her childhood.
Because he is a Siren.
A blood drinker.
A monster.
And now she must live with him in a world populated with enemies and dangerous friends. Can she survive the year?    — Extract from

The fact that I received this copy of this book from the author does not influence my policy to write an honest review.

Top Ten Books So Far 2015

My Top Reads So Far This Year…

  1. Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson
  2. Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor
  3. Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour by Morgan Matson
  4. Some Boys by Patty Blount
  5. Don’t Look Back by Jennifer L. Armentrout
  6. Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins
  7. Fortunately the Milk by Neil Gaiman
  8. The Impossible Knife of Memory by Laurie Halse Anderson
  9. Cracked Up to Be by Courtney Summers
  10. How to Save A Life by Sara Zarr

My Goodreads Challenge this year was to read 150 books. So far I have read 93, so am doing pretty well!

Good reads Challenge

Anyone notice that Morgan Matson has claimed the 1st and 3rd spot? I discovered her books this year and love them. She’s now in the category ‘read anything written by this author‘!

I am currently reading Naomi & Ely’s No Kiss List… What should I read next?

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish. It’s a chance to get to know fellow bloggers. This week topic is Top Ten Books I’ve Read So Far In 2015

Isla crop

Isla and the Happily Ever After cleverly ends the series, by linking back to Anna and the French Kiss, bringing forth feelings of nostalgia and comfort.

Isla and Josh share their intense love story, while drawing the reader out onto the streets of Paris amid beautifully described architecture and secluded romantic corners. I am delighted at the prospect of discovering more secrets about a city I have loved from afar.

During the story I was hit several times with gut-wrenching emotions, some that I had successfully hidden and it is for this reason the amazing book lands squarely in the 5 star zone.5 Star


Title: Isla and the Happily Ever AfterIsla
Series: Anna and the French Kiss #3
Author: Stephanie Perkins
Publication Date: 14 August 2014
Publisher: Usborne Publishing
Source: Library

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The café is boiling. The atmosphere is clouded with bittersweet coffee.
Three years of desire rip through my body and burst from my lips: “Josh!”
His head jolts up. For a long time, a very long time, he just stares at me.
And then…he blinks. “Isla?”

Hopeless romantic Isla has had a crush on brooding artist Josh since their first year at the School of America in Paris. And, after a chance encounter in Manhattan over the summer break, romance might be closer than Isla imagined. But as they begin their senior year back in France, Isla and Josh are forced to face uncertainty about their futures, and the very real possibility of being apart.

Set against the stunning backdrops of New York, Paris and Barcelona, this is a gorgeous, heart-wrenching and irresistible story of true love, and the perfect conclusion to Stephanie Perkins’s beloved series. — Extract from

Keep Holding On.Crop jpg

A mediocre, ‘wannabe’ feel-good story that just didn’t live up to expectations.

Although I appreciated the message Susane Colasanti was trying to convey in this story, it seemed as though Noelle’s life changing for the better was just too good to be true…
In reality victims of bullying & neglect often don’t get the ending they dream of.

Recommended age: 13+3 Star

Title:  Keep Holding On
Author: Susane Colasanti
Publication Date: 23 April 2013Keep Holding On
(1st published 2012)
Publisher: Speak
Source: Purchased

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Noelle’s life is all about survival. Even her best friend doesn’t know how much she gets bullied, or the ways her mom neglects her. Noelle’s kept so much about her life a secret for so long that when her long-time crush Julian Porter starts paying attention to her, she’s terrified. Surely it’s safer to stay hidden than to risk the pain of a broken heart. But when the antagonism of her classmates takes a dramatic turn, Noelle realizes it’s time to stand up for herself–and for the love that keeps her holding on.  — Extract from

Curb the Crazy

Getting to know the weird me. A non-bookish post.

Inspired by fellow blogger KissinBlueKaren‘s new weekly meme Beyond the Books

1. I laugh at my own jokes

I have a strange sense of humour and usually find I am laughing alone, often at my own jokes.


 2. I don’t do dustbins

Dustbin This is weirdly becoming worse as I get older. Just thinking about rubbish makes me itch to wash my hands.

I have no idea where it came from, I used to be a nurse so you’d think I could cope with the ‘yuk’, but I will barter almost anything not to have to put the rubbish out. This is a running joke in our house and my family take full advantage of this!

I enrolled my family to add to this list, they relished the task and came up with a list so vast I can’t include them all.

I have to add that I think these are perfectly normal traits…. so any support out there will be appreciated!

3. My Chair

I have my favourite chair in the lounge. It is mine. Others can borrow it but when I am ready to sit there they have to move. I can’t sit there until all their empty cups etc. have been moved from the side table. It’s my space.

4. I feel the book

I cry when reading a sad book. I know – I told you these were normal!

5. Untidy

Okay I admit they may have something here… I am very messy and am surrounded by ‘organised’ chaos.

You can read more about me here.
Beyond the books

Hop on over to the original post at KissinBlueKaren.




If you like discussion posts don’t miss:2015 Discussion Challenge 2

The 2015 Discussion Challenge hosted by Fiction Addiction & It Starts at Midnight.



Doll Bones Crop

This is an eerie tale. Sporadically illustrated and spooky enough to make my heart rate through the pages.

My name is Eleanor Kerchner
You can call me Queen
I died in 1895
Now it’s time to play. . .

I loved the original and imaginative game created by the three friends. Their game is so tightly woven into the ghost story that the lines between the real and the imaginary stories blur, until the children themselves are not entirely sure which is which.4 Star

Recommended age: 10+

Title: Doll Bones
Author: Holly BlackDoll Bones
Publication Date: 7 May 2013
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Source: Library

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Zach, Poppy and Alice have been friends for ever. They love playing with their action figure toys, imagining a magical world of adventure and heroism. But disaster strikes when, without warning, Zach’s father throws out all his toys, declaring he’s too old for them. Zach is furious, confused and embarrassed, deciding that the only way to cope is to stop playing . . . and stop being friends with Poppy and Alice. But one night the girls pay Zach a visit, and tell him about a series of mysterious occurrences. Poppy swears that she is now being haunted by a china doll – who claims that it is made from the ground-up bones of a murdered girl. They must return the doll to where the girl lived, and bury it. Otherwise the three children will be cursed for eternity . . .   — Extract from

Dying to Know You Crop

Like an unexpected gift, this book surprised me by its depth. I loved the originality of the adult POV (point of view) which works exceptionally well given that Karl, the main character, is dyslexic.

I wish that there were more books that cover this very real and extremely common form of learning disability with such sensitivity and respect.

A must have for every school library.4 Star

Recommended age: 13+

Title: Dying to Know YouDying to Know You
Author: Aidan Chambers
Publication Date: 1 April 2012
Publisher: Amulet Books
Source: Library

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Karl, aged seventeen, is hopelessly in love. But the object of his affections, Firella, demands proof, and poses him a series of questions regarding his attitude to the many sides of love. But Karl is dyslexic, and convinced that if Firella finds out, she will think he is stupid, and unworthy of her, and leave him.

So Karl asks a local writer to help him construct his replies – and an unlikely, but extremely touching, friendship develops between the two men. They both come to learn a great deal about about life from a very different perspective, and when an act of violence shatters their calm, they find their respective appraisal of life shifting in profound ways.   — Extract from