Books With Wings

#BooksWithWings

December 2016 Books With Wings. This December, while traveling home for Christmas, I left three books in random places to become #BooksWithWings. Two were released in Singapore and one in South Africa.

A fellow school librarian recently recommended a handy website Bookcrossing.com which facilitates the tracking of the books. *Great idea for a school library project. Each book is given a unique tracking number which is written in the book, along with instructions on how to record each capture. While my books have yet to been registered as caught, I’m going to optimistically believe that they are being enjoyed by someone, somewhere! It would be fun to follow their journey from reader to reader., but the record keeping is not as important to me as the thought that I may make someone happy.

Although the books I have released so far have been in large international airports, I don’t think anyone should be put off sharing books just because they don’t have to opportunity to travel. Leave a book in your local coffee shop/doctor’s room/hospital/retirement village/supermarket/school/homeless shelter… the list is endless. It’s not important how far the book travels, it still has the opportunity to bring joy to someone else.

Beautiful Broken ThingsBeautiful Broken Things

I was brave. She was reckless. We were trouble

Best friends Caddy and Rosie are inseparable. Their differences have brought them closer, but as she turns sixteen Caddy begins to wish she could be a bit more like Rosie – confident, funny and interesting. Then Suzanne comes into their lives: beautiful, damaged, exciting and mysterious, and things get a whole lot more complicated. – Goodreads.com

Wild release notes
Released in the wild on Wednesday 14 December 2016 at the free internet kiosk in Terminal 2 Transit area, Changi International Airport, Singapore.

 

Holding Up the UniverseHolding up the Universe

When Libby and Jack get tangled up in a cruel high school game—which lands them in group counseling and community service—they are both pissed, and then surprised. Because the more time they spend together, the less alone they feel. Because sometimes when you meet someone, it changes the world, theirs and yours. – Goodreads.com

 

Wild release notes
Released in the wild on Wednesday 14 December 2016 next to a water feature in Terminal 3 Transit area, Changi International Airport, Singapore.

 

The Girl on the TrainThe Girl on the Train

The debut psychological thriller that will forever change the way you look at other people’s lives. Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning and night. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. Jess and Jason, she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost. And then she sees something shocking… – Goodreads.com

Wild release notes
Released in the wild on Thursday 15 December 2016 near Gate E3 domestic departure lounge, OR Tambo International Airport, Johannesburg, South Africa

Have you ever released or caught a book in the wild? I would love to hear about your experiences.

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It is strange (but true) that many great books just don’t get into the hands of readers. Whether it’s an unappealing  cover / title or just poor marketing I feel sad for those little-known books that are really worth reading.

Here is a list (does anyone else get a spike of joy when compiling lists?) of books I loved but which have had very little attention on Goodreads even though it’s been a while since they were published. One thing these books all have in common, other than that I love them, is that they all have edgy, gritty characters (trust me this is a good thing!).

*All ratings are out of the possible 5 stars, subjective to the individual reviewer opinion published publicly on Goodreads and retrieved on 9 August 2016 .

These Books Deserve More Attention

Between Two Seas

 

Between Two Seas by Marie-Louise Jensen
317 Ratings,   4-star average
Set in Denmark this is a beautifully written historical fiction by a first-class author. It’s about a strong female character who journeys into the unknown to find her father. I have no idea why this book is not more popular. It’s a must read.

 

Dust by Sarah DaltryDust
37 ratings, 4.14- star average

An epic fantasy by an author whose writing is so seductive you’ll be sucked in from the first page. Full of twists the three main characters, a princess, assassin and a thief, will keep you on your toes throughout. Fantasy lovers add this to the top of your TBR. This is one of my rare 5-star reads,

Agora Files

 

The Agora Files by Adam Oster
18 ratings,  3.94- star average 

The Agora Files is a fast-paced, unpredictable and original dystopian story. Full of action, adrenaline, excitement and adventure but with a strong, appealing human element which comes through in family dynamics and unexpected relationships.

 

Scarred

Scarred by Joanne Macgregor
327 ratings, 3.86-star average

Written by a South African author this is a tender, sensitive contemporary story of hope and redemption but with strong, complex characters and witty banter.

 

Retaliation

Retaliation by Yasmin Shiraz
105 ratings, 4.24-star average

This is a powerful, brutal, raw but ultimately inspirational account of life on gang ruled streets.  Although set in Washington D.C. the story will resonate with any inner city streets of all major cities across the world and as such has the potential of reaching many teens who desperately need to hear the message of hope.

Grass

 

Grass by Cathy MacPhail
87 ratings, 3.75-star average

Grass is a story that will stick with you long after you’ve finished reading. Cathy MacPhail is a well-known author and this is my favourite of her books. A witness to a horrific crime by a local gang is placed in a very difficult situation when he is forbidden to grass (tell on).

Last Summer of Us

 

The Last Summer of Us by Maggie Harcourt
388 ratings, 3.64-star average

Drama follows three best friends, whose relationships intertwine with unexpected results, as they embark on a road trip.

One Two Three

 


One, Two, Three
by Elodie Nowodazki
237 ratings, 3.61-star average

Passionate, gritty, complicated characters abound in this intense story which revolves around a ballerina’s future career after an accident and her bizarre family relationships


Street Duty

Street Duty, Case One: Knock Down  by Chris Ould
60 ratings, 3.82-star average

Trainee student police officers encounter gritty, streetwise characters on their watch. Fast-paced action and realistic settings. A book not to miss.

 

Goblet Club


The Goblet Club
by S.A. Partridge
34 ratings, 3.75-star average

Set in a boy’s boarding school this is a gothic, sinister, award-winning book by a South African author. Reminiscent of Donna Tartt’s The Secret History with the formation of a secret exclusive club which in this case is dedicated to the study of poison. Dark themes and compelling characters make this a book not to miss.

Top Ten Tuesday

 

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish.

A controversial new cover for Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

The New Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Cover

The New Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Cover


Penguin
has announced their intention to republish Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory as a Penguin Modern Classic. Due to be released this September to celebrate the books 50th anniversary, this edition has a new cover which, although is to be published in the UK only, has been making the news around the world.

I really don’t like the new cover, which is both ominous and creepy, and I have to wonder – have they forgotten that this is essentially a children’s book…

What do you think?

A random selection of previous Charlie and the Chocolate Factory covers

A random selection of previous Charlie and the Chocolate Factory covers

 

Rachel Morgan releases ‘Forgiven’ a Free Novella

Rachel Morgan kicks off her new NA contemporary romance Trouble Series with the release of this FREE novella, FORGIVEN!

 

 

It’s time to face the past …
 
Three hundred and six days ago, Julia ran away from home. Abandoning her family, friends, boyfriend, and university plans, she fled with no explanation. She can’t hide forever, though, and now it’s time to face the mess she left behind.

(NA romance free of sexual content and explicit language.)

I was captivated from the very first sentence “I return home under the cover of night…” I started this prequel novella late last night and could not put it down until it was finished. Luckily it was a short story otherwise I would not have slept at all last night. Note to self: don’t start one of Rachel Morgan’s books late at night!

It is so refreshing to read a well written book set in South Africa. The description of the cane fields was spot on, anyone returning home via Durban’s King Shaka International Airport can relate to that feeling of nostalgia associated with returning to our beautiful part of the world.

I am not usually a fan of short stories, often find I don’t have time to connect with the characters but this story was mesmerising, not only did I laugh out loud but also found myself crying… in a short story – that never happens! 5 Star

I can’t wait for the rest of the series. The first book ‘The Trouble with Flying’ is expected 26 June 2014

Rachel Morgan was born in South Africa and spent a large portion of her childhood living in a fantasy land of her own making. After completing a degree in genetics, she decided science wasn’t for her–after all, they didn’t approve of made-up facts. These days she spends much of her time immersed in fantasy land once more, writing fiction for young adults (and eating unhealthy amounts of chocolate).Subscribe to her newsletter to be the first to hear about new releases and giveaways, follow her on Twitter or Facebook, or check out her books on Goodreads.

 

Top 10 Things on 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

2.

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.

Crank

 

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

 

Harry Potter

9.

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

10.

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

toptentuesday

 

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.

Are we ready for book-free libraries?

The Los Angeles Times published an article earlier this month about America’s first all-digital bookless public library which has opened in San Antonio:

The article goes on to clarify that while this isn’t actually the first all digital library, the Tuscan-Pima public library in Arizona opened a book-free branch in 2002, this didn’t stay book-free for long – books were brought back after complaints from the public!

So the question is – are we ready to give up print books altogether?
What do you think?

003Personally, while I have no problem reading on my kindle or ipad, there is one thing that I miss – seeing the book cover every time I pick up the book!

I love book covers and am not afraid to admit I judge a book by its cover…  those with boring covers tend to gather dust at the bottom of the pile of to-read books.

Our school library was one of the first in South Africa to introduce an e-Library, but this runs alongside our traditional print library and adds value by being available to students anytime & anywhere, thus allowing them to exchange books outside school hours, even while on holiday at the beach.

I began jotting down my thought for this post a few days ago and the first line was “I can’t wait for this movie! Divergent by Veronica Roth is one of my favourite books.”

While I am still looking forward to this movie and I still love the series, I am glad it is more than a month away from release. I need the time to come to terms with the dramatic ending of Allegiant, the third book of the trilogy. I was totally blown away and am not sure I can see the characters from the beginning without the thought of the ending clouding the experience.

Enough said! I hate spoilers and for those of you who have not read Divergent yet – read it now before the movie is released on 21 March 2014. You may be in for wild experience, but I promise you, you won’t regret it! Be brave…

Divergent – the Movie is due for release on 21 March 2014.

Watch the trailer on Youtube:

In recent news France hopes to pass a law banning free shipping offered by online book retailers in a bid to protect the small physical bookshops.

French senators pass ‘anti-Amazon’ law to protect small retailers

What is your opinion? Should governments endeavour to save small indie bookshops or is it inevitable that large corporate businesses will eventually take over this industry, especially as eBooks increase in popularity?

I live in a small rural community, where the only book shop available is a small branch of a large chain. While my personal purchases are largely digital, I do buy the majority of our library’s physical stock online, and yes I would definitely miss the free shipping! Without it our library would contain fewer books and lack the diversity our students deserve.

Having said this there is one indie book seller who would be sorely missed. She travels around South Africa with her vehicle stacked to the hilt with a wide range of books, dispensing encouragement, advice and friendship to anyone lucky enough to meet her. I owe basket full of gratitude to Audrey of ‘Hedgehog Books’ who has over the years given me invaluable advice. Her product knowledge is phenomenal and it is this, along with her enthusiasm, that makes her the success she is! Thank you Audrey 🙂

To contact Audrey  at Hedgehog Books email: hedgehog@iafrica.com