Breathe by Sarah Crossan

Breathe crop
A mediocre read, especially disappointing because dystopian fiction has been one of my favourite genres (and I fell in love with this beautiful cover) – Does this mean that I am over dystopia? I hope not.

I did like the use of the future oxygen deprived world, a world with enough realism to be believable. It was the characters that were poorly developed. I need to emotionally connect with characters to care about them, one way or another, and I didn’t feel much for them at all. Right now I have no plans to read the sequel.3 Star

Recommended age 12+

Author: Sarah Crossan
Publication Date: 11 October 2012Breathe by Sarah Crossan
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Source: Purchased

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The world is dead.
The survivors live under the protection of Breathe, the corporation that found a way to manufacture oxygen-rich air.

Alina has been stealing for a long time.  If she’s careful, it’ll be easy. 

Quinn should be worried about Alina and a bit afraid for himself, too, but even though this is dangerous, it’s also the most interesting thing to happen to him in ages. 

Bea wants to tell him that none of this is fair; they’d planned a trip together, the two of them, and she’d hoped he’d discover her out here, not another girl.

As they walk into the Outlands with two days’ worth of oxygen in their tanks, everything they believe will be shattered. Will they be able to make it back? Will they want to?  Extract from

Top 10 Things on My Bookish Bucket List

Top 10 Things on My Bookish Bucket List

(My Bookish Bucket List: Not necessarily in order of preference)

1.I found my first geocache a few weeks ago, geocaching is my new hobby inspired by the amazing YA book North of Beautiful by Justina Chen, and would love the opportunity to travel so I can discover more. I wish I knew about geocaching when we lived overseas.

North of Beautiful by Justina Chen Headley


I would love see South Africa through Bill Bryson’s eyes. I love his humour and have collected all his travel books. I hope that he can be persuaded to write a book about my country one day.


sunburned country


3.I would like to meet author Alexandra Fuller who wrote the memoir Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight. Her story of her childhood in Rhodesia during the war was so close to my own childhood that I feel as though I already know her. A beautiful book that made me so nostalgic.

Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight by Alexandra Fuller

4.I have always wanted to join in the mythosphere treasure hunt game in my favourite children’s book The Game by Diana Wynne Jones. I would love a chance to retrieve a golden apple!


‘The Game’ by Diana Wynne Jones

5.I would love to see my favourite South African YA fantasy book The Faerie Guardian by Rachel Morgan be made into a movie.


Faerie Guardian

6.I am in awe of illustrators. I wish I had the artistic talent to illustrate children’s picture books.


big hungry bear

7.I know this sounds naive, but I would like to find a way to rid the world of illegal drugs. As a parent it is the one thing that concerns me the most. If you haven’t read Crank by Ellen Hopkins, based on a true story, try it. It is a very powerful story.



8.I wish I could have attended Hogwarts as a student. I went to boarding school, and it was nothing like that!


Harry Potter


I have always been fascinated by Occupied France during the Second World War and have devoured books set in these times. I would love to spend time in France discovering all the villages I have read about.

Thinhs we did for love


Few people know this… last year I was challenged to write a children’s picture book for a charity which I did, maybe I will be brave enough to share it here one day :-), but I also wrote another  story and it is my ‘secret’ wish to see it illustrated and published one day…

What’s on your bookish bucket list?

This post is also linked to 50 Bookish Things You Must Do Before You Die  created by Love at First Book



Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish.

This week’s task is to list the 10 book related things I would like to do.

Resistance by Craig Simpson

Resistance by Craig Simpson

Resistance crop

Tyranny, courage, betrayal and espionage feature heavily in this action-packed adventure set in Occupied Norway during the Second World War. Fourteen-year-old Marek and his brother join forces with the Resistance and stage acts of sabotage and rescue while battling the harsh sub-arctic conditions. Great read for boys – but also popular with girls in our school library.4 Star

Recommended age 12+

Author: Craig Simpson
Publication Date: 1 February 2007Resistance by Craig Simpson
Publisher: Transworld Publishers
Source: Purchased

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Norway, September 1943. For brothers Marek and Olaf, a hunting trip offers a brief chance to get away from the German occupying forces. But returning home they witness the horror of their father’s arrest by the Gestapo and the start of a brutal regime under the evil Lieutenant Wold. — Extract from

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

The Fault in Our Stars crop

Every once in a while, if you are lucky, you come across a book that changes your life. This book is one of them. Alternating between laughter and tears I read devoured this book. There is no way I can give it the review it deserves, so I am going to rely on my experiences with terminal illness – I trained as a nurse and midwife and have spent many years in hospitals and other such institutions where dying is exposed in all its undignified ugliness.

Dealing with teenagers dying is a tough subject to write about, not only is it a subject most of us either can’t or won’t face but it is difficult to keep the characters real and natural – our true fallible human personalities are only amplified by difficult times. John Green has not only created strong, believable characters whose circumstances ring true, but has interwoven the story with humour, hope and emotion. A must read.

My only concern is that the uninspiring cover will put off many potential readers.5 Star

Recommended age 13+

The Fault in Our Stars
Author: John Green
Publication Date: 10 January 2012The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
Publisher: Dutton Books
Source: Purchased
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Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel’s story is about to be completely rewritten. – Extract from

The movie version of this book is due for release on 6 June 2014.

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