Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Wishlist Wednesday #162

Wishlist Wednesday is a book blog hop where we will post about one book per week that has been on our wishlist for some time, or just added (it's entirely up to you), that we can't wait to get off the wishlist and onto our wonderful shelves.

So what do you need to do to join in?
  • Follow Pen to Paper as host of the meme.
  • Please consider adding the blog hop button to your blog somewhere, so others can find it easily and join in too! Help spread the word! The code will be at the bottom of the post under the linky.
  • Pick a book from your wishlist that you are dying to get to put on your shelves.
  • Do a post telling your readers about the book and why it's on your wishlist.
  • Add your blog to the linky at the bottom of this post.
  • Put a link back to pen to paper (http://www.pentopaperblog.com) somewhere in your post, and a note saying that Pen to Paper is the host of the meme.
  • Visit the other blogs and enjoy!


Alice and the Fly
by James Rice

Synopsis:
A spellbinding debut novel by an exceptional new young British talent.

This is a book about phobias and obsessions, isolation and dark corners. It's about families, friendships, and carefully preserved secrets. But above everything else it's about love. Finding love - in any of its forms - and nurturing it.

Miss Hayes has a new theory. She thinks my condition's caused by some traumatic incident from my past I keep deep-rooted in my mind. As soon as I come clean I'll flood out all these tears and it'll all be ok and I won't be scared of Them anymore. The truth is I can't think of any single traumatic childhood incident to tell her. I mean, there are plenty of bad memories - Herb's death, or the time I bit the hole in my tongue, or Finners Island, out on the boat with Sarah - but none of these are what caused the phobia. I've always had it. It's Them. I'm just scared of Them. It's that simple.
This one is on my Wishlist at the request of my fellow Brummie booksellers. James is coming to do an event at one of our Waterstones stores in the new year, and I have been told that Alice and the Fly is a fabulous book. When you're told by a bookseller (even if you are a bookseller youself) that a book is amazing and you need to read it, you sit up and pay attention! A debut novel and already bookseller-endored – sounds like a good one to me!

What's on your wishlist this week? Let us know in the comments below, or link to your own Wishlist Wednesday post in the Linky :) 








Wednesday, 3 December 2014

Wishlist Wednesday #161

Wishlist Wednesday is a book blog hop where we will post about one book per week that has been on our wishlist for some time, or just added (it's entirely up to you), that we can't wait to get off the wishlist and onto our wonderful shelves.

So what do you need to do to join in?
  • Follow Pen to Paper as host of the meme.
  • Please consider adding the blog hop button to your blog somewhere, so others can find it easily and join in too! Help spread the word! The code will be at the bottom of the post under the linky.
  • Pick a book from your wishlist that you are dying to get to put on your shelves.
  • Do a post telling your readers about the book and why it's on your wishlist.
  • Add your blog to the linky at the bottom of this post.
  • Put a link back to pen to paper (http://www.pentopaperblog.com) somewhere in your post, and a note saying that Pen to Paper is the host of the meme.
  • Visit the other blogs and enjoy!


The Imaginary
by A.F. Harrold & Emily Gravett

Synopsis:
Rudger is Amanda’s best friend. He doesn't exist, but nobody's perfect.

Only Amanda can see her imaginary friend – until the sinister Mr Bunting arrives at Amanda's door. Mr Bunting hunts imaginaries. Rumour says that he eats them. And he's sniffed out Rudger. Soon Rudger is alone, and running for his imaginary life. But can a boy who isn’t there survive without a friend to dream him up?

A brilliantly funny, scary and moving read from the unique imagination of A.F. Harrold, this beautiful book is astoundingly illustrated with integrated art and colour spreads by the award-winning Emily Gravett.
This is a book that I keep seeing around recently, and it's nearly all good things. I can completely see why it might get so much positive attention. For one thing, the illustrations are beautiful, and if you ever see a copy 'in the flesh', it's even more stunning. And the synopsis sounds fantastic; thrilling, unique and totally compelling. All in all, this sounds like one that shouldn't be missed, and I don't think it will be long before I have a copy on my shelves, and not too long again until I pick it up to read.

What's on your wishlist this week? Let us know in the comments below, or link to your own Wishlist Wednesday post in the Linky :) 








Sunday, 30 November 2014

Sorta Like a Rockstar by Matthew Quick **Review**


Sorta Like a Rockstar
Series: None
Pages: 352
Publisher: Headline
Release date: 21st November 2013 (this ed)
Buy: Book Depository | Amazon UK | Amazon US | Waterstones

Add to Goodreads

Goodreads synopsis:
Amber Appleton has a lot to be thankful for.

OR

Amber Appleton has never had it easy.


Both are true. On the one hand, she's got the best friends a seventeen-year-old could ask for and a loyal dog, Bobby Big Boy. On the other, her mum frequently has too much to drink, Amber's never quite sure where her next meal will come from and ever since her mum's latest boyfriend kicked them out, Amber and her mum have been living in the back of a school bus.

Amber has always found it easy to be upbeat, to find the light in the darkest of situations. Until, that is, an unimaginable tragedy occurs. Forced to rethink her way of life, can Amber remain a rock star of hope?

This is the story of a very special teenager, whose faith and hope is tested to the limit.

The last time I read anything by Matthew Quick was when I read The Silver Linings Playbook, just after it came out. I remember thinking that, although I thought Silver Linings was okay, I probably wouldn't pick up any more of his books (even though I did like Silver Linings ... but I have to confess that I loved the film a whole lot more). I'm so grateful that I decided to ignore this original thought and go ahead and read Sorta Like a Rockstar – it turned out to be all kinds of awesome.

The first thing that really struck me about this book was the voice. The book is told from main character, Amber Appleton's point of view, and her voice is probably one of the strongest I've read in a long while. Not only do you get to know Amber through what she does and her story, but you also get to know her on a much deeper level, because you can hear her speaking the words aloud in your head. And I love her character; she's sassy, humorous, witty and (as Amber herself would say) a pretty cool cat. She proves herself to be a loving, caring, open person, and I seriously admire her (or dig that, as Amber would say).
I quickly fell in love with Amber – she'd definitely be on my 'fictional characters I'd like to meet in real life' list (and yes, this is a real thing).

But there are plenty of other reasons for loving this book. The host of other characters is another good one. Amber is well-known among the smaller communities in her hometown. She goes to a Korean Catholic Church 'on the other side of the Ghetto', where she helps Father Chee teach the local Korean women to speak English through the power of R&B; she cooks breakfast and dinner for her friend Ricky and his mother, Donna; visits a Haiku-writing Vietnam veteran; and she hangs out with the old people at the local retirement home. In all of these places she is well-loved, and the people she sees are beautiful. They become even more beautiful when Amber finds her already troubled world is falling apart around her, and her friends rally around to help her get through it.

You know a story is a powerful one when not only do you smile and laugh, but you cry (both from sadness and happiness) as well. This book was such an emotional rollercoaster for me. I have been known to cry easily at books that are sad, but it's rare that I get all teary-eyed when it's happy too – it has to be an incredibly special moment for me to get just as teary at happiness as sadness. But this book threw so many emotions around that I didn't know what had hit me until I was already in tears!

Sorta Like a Rockstar is a very special book. Not only is the writing superb (both Matthew's and Ambers – I loved Amber's 'Doggie Haikus'!), but the story is powerful and moving, and I was gripped all the way through. It's one of those rare books that manages to be both heartfelt and moving, yet quirky and funny too. This is a must read!


Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Wishlist Wednesday #160

Wishlist Wednesday is a book blog hop where we will post about one book per week that has been on our wishlist for some time, or just added (it's entirely up to you), that we can't wait to get off the wishlist and onto our wonderful shelves.

So what do you need to do to join in?
  • Follow Pen to Paper as host of the meme.
  • Please consider adding the blog hop button to your blog somewhere, so others can find it easily and join in too! Help spread the word! The code will be at the bottom of the post under the linky.
  • Pick a book from your wishlist that you are dying to get to put on your shelves.
  • Do a post telling your readers about the book and why it's on your wishlist.
  • Add your blog to the linky at the bottom of this post.
  • Put a link back to pen to paper (http://www.pentopaperblog.com) somewhere in your post, and a note saying that Pen to Paper is the host of the meme.
  • Visit the other blogs and enjoy!


Son [The Giver Quartet #4]
by Lois Lowry

Synopsis:
They called her Water Claire. When she washed up on their shore, no one knew that she came from a society where emotions and colors didn’t exist. That she had become a Vessel at age thirteen. That she had carried a Product at age fourteen. That it had been stolen from her body. Claire had a son. But what became of him she never knew. What was his name? Was he even alive? She was supposed to forget him, but that was impossible. Now Claire will stop at nothing to find her child, even if it means making an unimaginable sacrifice. Son thrusts readers once again into the chilling world of the Newbery Medal winning book, The Giver, as well as Gathering Blue and Messenger where a new hero emerges. In this thrilling series finale, the startling and long-awaited conclusion to Lois Lowry’s epic tale culminates in a final clash between good and evil.
I literally finished the third book in this quartet last night and already I am desperate for the final book! It was by far the best in the quartet so far and has left me seriously wanting more.
This is a really interesting series because the first two books seemed like totally different worlds, only for them to start coming together in book three. I'll be really interested to see how this final, and much longer, instalment will complete the world.

What's on your wishlist this week? Let us know in the comments below, or link to your own Wishlist Wednesday post in the Linky :) 








Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Wishlist Wednesday #159

Wishlist Wednesday is a book blog hop where we will post about one book per week that has been on our wishlist for some time, or just added (it's entirely up to you), that we can't wait to get off the wishlist and onto our wonderful shelves.

So what do you need to do to join in?
  • Follow Pen to Paper as host of the meme.
  • Please consider adding the blog hop button to your blog somewhere, so others can find it easily and join in too! Help spread the word! The code will be at the bottom of the post under the linky.
  • Pick a book from your wishlist that you are dying to get to put on your shelves.
  • Do a post telling your readers about the book and why it's on your wishlist.
  • Add your blog to the linky at the bottom of this post.
  • Put a link back to pen to paper (http://www.pentopaperblog.com) somewhere in your post, and a note saying that Pen to Paper is the host of the meme.
  • Visit the other blogs and enjoy!


Unite Me [Shatter Me #1.5 & 2.5]
by Tahereh Mafi

Synopsis:
Perfect for fans of Tahereh Mafi’s New York Times bestselling Shatter Me trilogy, this book collects her two companion novellas, Fracture Me and Destroy Me, in print for the first time ever. It also features an exclusive look into Juliette’s journal and a preview of Ignite Me, the hotly anticipated final novel of the series.

Destroy Me tells the events between Shatter Me and Unravel Me from Warner’s point of view. Even though Juliette shot him in order to escape, Warner can’t stop thinking about her—and he’ll do anything to get her back. But when the Supreme Commander of The Reestablishment arrives, he has much different plans for Juliette. Plans Warner cannot allow.

Fracture Me is told from Adam’s perspective and bridges the gap between Unravel Me and Ignite Me. As the Omega Point rebels prepare to fight the Sector 45 soldiers, Adam's more focused on the safety of Juliette, Kenji, and his brother. The Reestablishment will do anything to crush the resistance . . . including killing everyone Adam cares about.

The Shatter Me series is perfect for fans who crave action-packed young adult novels with tantalizing romance like Divergent and The Hunger Games. This captivating story, which combines the best of dystopian and paranormal, was praised as “a thrilling, high-stakes saga of self-discovery and forbidden love” by Ransom Riggs, bestselling author of Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children.
I couldn't resist putting this one on my Wishlist Wednesday this week. Recently I've really been into the Shatter Me trilogy, having read the first two books within a month of each other (which is really rare for me ... I'm terrible at finishing series or trilogies (it took me over two years to finish The Hunger Games trilogy!). This has really got me hooked though, and I couldn't resist reading the second book so soon after the first. The only reason I haven't read book three yet is because I'm still waiting for my copy to arrive – hopefully it will be here later this week.
And then I will get my hands on this beautiful thing! I'm really looking forward to reading something from Warner's point of view – I'm hoping it will help me to understand his character better and help me decide about whether or not I actually like him!!

What's on your wishlist this week? Let us know in the comments below, or link to your own Wishlist Wednesday post in the Linky :) 








Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Wishlist Wednesday #158

Wishlist Wednesday is a book blog hop where we will post about one book per week that has been on our wishlist for some time, or just added (it's entirely up to you), that we can't wait to get off the wishlist and onto our wonderful shelves.

So what do you need to do to join in?
  • Follow Pen to Paper as host of the meme.
  • Please consider adding the blog hop button to your blog somewhere, so others can find it easily and join in too! Help spread the word! The code will be at the bottom of the post under the linky.
  • Pick a book from your wishlist that you are dying to get to put on your shelves.
  • Do a post telling your readers about the book and why it's on your wishlist.
  • Add your blog to the linky at the bottom of this post.
  • Put a link back to pen to paper (http://www.pentopaperblog.com) somewhere in your post, and a note saying that Pen to Paper is the host of the meme.
  • Visit the other blogs and enjoy!


In the After
by Demitria Lunetta

Synopsis:
They hear the most silent of footsteps. They are faster than anything you've ever seen. And They won't stop chasing you...until you are dead.

Amy is watching TV when it happens, when the world is attacked by Them. These vile creatures are rapidly devouring mankind. Most of the population is overtaken, but Amy manages to escape—and even rescue “Baby,” a toddler left behind in the chaos. Marooned in Amy’s house, the girls do everything they can to survive—and avoid Them at all costs.

After years of hiding, they are miraculously rescued and taken to New Hope, a colony of survivors living in a former government research compound. While at first the colony seems like a dream with plenty of food, safety, and shelter, New Hope slowly reveals that it is far from ideal. And Amy soon realizes that unless things change, she’ll lose Baby—and much more.

Rebellious, courageous, and tender, this unforgettable duo will have you on the edge of your seat as you tear through the pulse-pounding narrow escapes and horrifying twists of fate in this thrilling debut from author Demitria Lunetta.
I saw this yesterday in a bookshop in Winchester, while I was down there visiting a friend and I was immediately intrigued. The only reason I didn't buy it (along with three others ... I know, I have no will power) is because I couldn't get my phone to connect to the internet to make sure that it was the first book in the series. Now I know that it is the first book though, I will definitely be keeping an eye out for it from now on. I may even add it to the Christmas list!

What's on your wishlist this week? Let us know in the comments below, or link to your own Wishlist Wednesday post in the Linky :) 








 
Blog design installed by Sweet Dreams Design