Tuesday, September 30, 2014

DNF Review: Endgame: The Calling by James Frey

Title: Endgame: The Calling (Endgame #1)
Author: James Frey
Genre: Young Adult, Mystery/Thriller
Release Date: 7 October, 2014
Source: Bookworld

Twelve thousand years ago, they came. They descended from the sky amid smoke and fire, and created humanity and gave us rules to live by. They needed gold and they built our earliest civilizations to mine it for them. When they had what they needed, they left. But before they left, they told us someday they would come back, and when they did, a game would be played. A game that would determine our future.

This is Endgame.

For ten thousand years the lines have existed in secret. The 12 original lines of humanity. Each had to have a Player prepared at all times. They have trained generation after generation after generation. In weapons, languages, history, tactics, disguise assassination. Together the players are everything: strong, kind, ruthless, loyal, smart, stupid, ugly, lustful, mean, fickle, beautiful, calculating, lazy, exuberant, weak. They are good and evil. Like you. Like all.

This is Endgame.

When the game starts, the players will have to find three keys. The keys are somewhere on earth. The only rule of their Endgame is that there are no rules. Whoever finds the keys first wins the game. Endgame: The Calling is about the hunt for the first key. And just as it tells the story of the hunt for a hidden key, written into the book is a puzzle. It invites readers to play their own Endgame and to try to solve the puzzle. Whoever does will open a case filled with gold. Alongside the puzzle will be a revolutionary mobile game built by Google’s Niantic Labs that will allow you to play a real-world version of Endgame where you can join one of the lines and do battle with people around you.
Will exuberance beat strength? Stupidity top kindness? Laziness thwart beauty? Will the winner be good or evil? There is only one way to find out.

People of Earth.
Endgame has begun.
Review by Nara

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Review: The Perilous Sea by Sherry Thomas

Title: The Perilous Sea (The Elemental Trilogy #2)
Author: Sherry Thomas
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Alternate History
Release Date: 16 September, 2014
Source: Balzer + Bray via Edelweiss

After spending the summer away from each other, Titus and Iolanthe (still disguised as Archer Fairfax) are eager to return to Eton College to resume their training to fight the Bane. Although no longer bound to Titus by a blood oath, Iolanthe is more committed than ever to fulfilling her destiny—especially with the agents of Atlantis quickly closing in.

Soon after arriving at school, though, Titus makes a shocking discovery, one that makes him question everything he previously believed about their mission. Faced with this devastating realization, Iolanthe is forced to come to terms with her new role, while Titus must choose between following his mother's prophecies—and forging a divergent path to an unknowable future.
Review by Nara

Friday, September 26, 2014

Review: Northern Lights by Philip Pullman

Title: Northern Lights (His Dark Materials #1)
Author: Philip Pullman
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

When Lyra's friend Roger disappears, she and her daemon, Pantalaimon, determine to find him. The ensuing quest leads them into the bleak splendour of the North, where armoured bears rule the ice and witch-queens fly through the frozen skies.
Review by Nara

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

The Gif Book Tag

I was tagged by Kayla @ The Thousand Lives! The rules:
1. Kayla gives me a list of ten books.
2. I need to find a gif to accurately portray my thoughts about each book.
Well, here goes.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Review: Sway by Kat Spears

Title: Sway
Author: Kat Spears
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Release Date: 16 September, 2014
Source: St Martin's Griffin via NetGalley

In Kat Spears’s hilarious and often poignant debut, high school senior Jesse Alderman, or "Sway," as he’s known, could sell hell to a bishop. He also specializes in getting things people want---term papers, a date with the prom queen, fake IDs. He has few close friends and he never EVER lets emotions get in the way. For Jesse, life is simply a series of business transactions.

But when Ken Foster, captain of the football team, leading candidate for homecoming king, and all-around jerk, hires Jesse to help him win the heart of the angelic Bridget Smalley, Jesse finds himself feeling all sorts of things. While following Bridget and learning the intimate details of her life, he falls helplessly in love for the very first time. He also finds himself in an accidental friendship with Bridget’s belligerent and self-pitying younger brother who has cerebral palsy. Suddenly, Jesse is visiting old folks at a nursing home in order to run into Bridget, and offering his time to help the less fortunate, all the while developing a bond with this young man who idolizes him. Could the tin man really have a heart after all?

A Cyrano de Bergerac story with a modern twist, Sway is told from Jesse’s point of view with unapologetic truth and biting humor, his observations about the world around him untempered by empathy or compassion---until Bridget’s presence in his life forces him to confront his quiet devastation over a life-changing event a year earlier and maybe, just maybe, feel something again.
Review by Nara

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Review: Blackbird by Anna Carey

Title: Blackbird
Author: Anna Carey
Genre: Young Adult, Mystery/Thriller
Release Date: 16 September, 2014
Source: HarperTeen via Edelweiss

This twisty, breathless cat-and-mouse thrill ride, told in the second person, follows a girl with amnesia in present-day Los Angeles who is being pursued by mysterious and terrifying assailants.

A girl wakes up on the train tracks, a subway car barreling down on her. With only minutes to react, she hunches down and the train speeds over her. She doesn’t remember her name, where she is, or how she got there. She has a tattoo on the inside of her right wrist of a blackbird inside a box, letters and numbers printed just below: FNV02198. There is only one thing she knows for sure: people are trying to kill her.

On the run for her life, she tries to untangle who she is and what happened to the girl she used to be. Nothing and no one are what they appear to be. But the truth is more disturbing than she ever imagined.

The Maze Runner series meets Code Name Verity, Blackbird is relentless and action-packed, filled with surprising twists.
Review by Nara

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Review: Rites of Passage by Joy N. Hensley

Title: Rites of Passage
Author: Joy N. Hensley
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Release Date: 9 September, 2014
Source: HarperTeen via Edelweiss

Sam McKenna’s never turned down a dare. And she's not going to start with the last one her brother gave her before he died.

So Sam joins the first-ever class of girls at the prestigious Denmark Military Academy. She’s expecting push-ups and long runs, rope climbing and mud-crawling. As a military brat, she can handle an obstacle course just as well as the boys. She's even expecting the hostility she gets from some of the cadets who don’t think girls belong there. What she’s not expecting is her fiery attraction to her drill sergeant. But dating is strictly forbidden and Sam won't risk her future, or the dare, on something so petty...no matter how much she wants him.

As Sam struggles to prove herself, she discovers that some of the boys don’t just want her gone—they will stop at nothing to drive her out. When their petty threats turn to brutal hazing, bleeding into every corner of her life, she realizes they are not acting alone. A decades-old secret society is alive and active… and determined to force her out.
At any cost.

Now time's running short. Sam must decide who she can trust...and choosing the wrong person could have deadly consequences.
Review by Nara

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Life of a Blogger [1]

I thought it was about time that I start sharing a bit more information about myself in terms of my life outside blogging/reading! So I'm going to join in on the Life of a Blogger meme hosted by Jessi @ Novel Heartbeat.

Because I've missed so many, I'm just going to combine a couple per post, starting from the very first one until I finally catch up to current time. And I might skip some of the ones like "101 things I like" because I'm lazy. lol.

So this post is going to be addressing:
Favourite Bands

Monday, September 15, 2014

Review: State of Grace by Hilary Badger

Title: State of Grace
Author: Hilary Badger
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction
Release Date: 24 September, 2014
Source: Hardie Grant Egmont

Nothing and no-one exists beyond the garden where Wren and the others live, but that's okay – they have everything they could possibly need right there, in paradise. The trees are laden with fruit and the water in the lagoon is as clear as crystal. Wren's world is a utopia.

If only Wren could stop the strange visions she's started having: flashes of another world, where there are people she doesn't know – couldn't possibly know – but who somehow feel familiar. And what does Blaze, the most beautiful and mysterious of creations, know about what's going on in Wren's head?

When she uncovers the lies that are propping up everything she has ever believed in, Wren must choose: remain in blissful ignorance or face the ugly truth?
Review by Nara

Friday, September 12, 2014

Review: Illusions of Fate by Kiersten White

Title: Illusions of Fate
Author: Kiersten White
Genre: Young Adult, High Fantasy
Release Date: 9 September, 2014
Source: HarperTeen via Edelweiss

Downton Abbey meets Cassandra Clare in this lush, romantic fantasy from New York Times bestselling author Kiersten White.

“I did my best to keep you from crossing paths with this world. And I shall do my best to protect you now that you have.”

Jessamin has been an outcast since she moved from her island home of Melei to the dreary country of Albion. Everything changes when she meets Finn, a gorgeous, enigmatic young lord who introduces her to the secret world of Albion’s nobility, a world that has everything Jessamin doesn’t—power, money, status…and magic. But Finn has secrets of his own, dangerous secrets that the vicious Lord Downpike will do anything to possess. Unless Jessamin, armed only with her wits and her determination, can stop him.

Kiersten White captured readers’ hearts with her New York Times bestselling Paranormalcy trilogy and its effortless mix of magic and real-world teenage humor. She returns to that winning combination of wit, charm, and enchantment in Illusions of Fate, a sparkling and romantic new novel perfect for fans of Cassandra Clare, The Madman’s Daughter, and Libba Bray.
Review by Nara

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Review: The Witch of Salt and Storm by Kendall Kulper

Title: The Witch of Salt and Storm
Author: Kendall Kulper
Genre: Young Adult, Historical, Paranormal Fantasy
Release Date: 4 September, 2014
Source: Orchard Books via NetGalley

Sixteen-year-old Avery Roe wants only to take her rightful place as the sea witch of Prince Island, making the charms that keep the island's whalers safe and prosperous at sea. But before she could learn how to control her power, her mother - the first Roe woman in centuries to turn her back on magic - steals Avery away from her grandmother. Avery must escape before her grandmother dies, taking with her the secrets of the Roe's power.

The one magical remnant left to Avery is the ability to read dreams, and one night she foresees her own murder. Time is running short, both for her and for the people of her island who need the witches' help to thrive.

Avery has never read a dream that hasn't come true, but a tattooed harpoon boy named Tane tells her he can help her change her fate. Becoming a witch may prevent her murder and save her island from ruin, but Avery discovers it will also require a sacrifice she never expected. And as she falls in love with Tane, she learns it is his life and hers that hang in the balance.

A sweeping romance with a spellbinding twist - from a talented new voice in YA fiction.
Review by Nara

Monday, September 8, 2014

Read ALL THE BOOKS Update: August

If you don't know what this post is about, you can read this introduction post. Basically, I realised I have way too many unread books on my shelves, and so I'm going to try read as many of them as possible in the coming months. I'll probably continue this feature until I finish them all...but I don't know whether that will actually happen seeing as though I keep buying books. And borrowing books from the library. And requesting eARCs. Tis a problem.

So, here's my update for August!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Flailage: Heir of Fire by Sarah J Maas

Title: Heir of Fire (Throne of Glass #3)
Author: Sarah J Maas
Genre: Young Adult, High Fantasy
Release Date: 2 September, 2014
Source: Bloomsbury Sydney

Lost and broken, Celaena Sardothien’s only thought is to avenge the savage death of her dearest friend: as the King of Adarlan’s Assassin, she is bound to serve this tyrant, but he will pay for what he did. Any hope Celaena has of destroying the king lies in answers to be found in Wendlyn. Sacrificing his future, Chaol, the Captain of the King’s Guard, has sent Celaena there to protect her, but her darkest demons lay in that same place. If she can overcome them, she will be Adarlan’s biggest threat – and his own toughest enemy.

While Celaena learns of her true destiny, and the eyes of Erilea are on Wendlyn, a brutal and beastly force is preparing to take to the skies. Will Celaena find the strength not only to win her own battles, but to fight a war that could pit her loyalties to her own people against those she has grown to love?
Review by Nara