Wednesday, December 31, 2014

2014: The Year I Discovered My Favourite Author

Those of you who have read this blog for a while will know that my favourite author is Brandon Sanderson. Although he's been writing for quite some time (his debut was in 2005), I only actually discovered his books in January of this year. I suppose that's not true...I'd known about his books for a while, but only bothered reading them this year. Best decision of my life.

Monday, December 29, 2014

2014 Favourites Breakdown

It's almost the end of the year, so I thought it's now time to look at some of the stats to do with my favourite books from this year.

Here's the list of my favourite books from this year:
The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson
The Well of Ascension by Brandon Sanderson
The Hero of Ages by Brandon Sanderson
The Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson
Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson
The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson
Words of Radiance by Brandon Sanderson
The Emperor's Soul by Brandon Sanderson
The Rithmatist by Brandon Sanderson
Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson
The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
The Republic of Thieves by Scott Lynch
The Crimson Campaign by Brian McClellan
Traitor's Blade by Sebastian de Castell
Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi
Cress by Marissa Meyer
The Assassin's Blade by Sarah J Maas
Heir of Fire by Sarah J Maas
Ruins by Dan Wells
Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover
Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor
The Immortal Crown by Richelle Mead
Silver Shadows by Richelle Mead
Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo
Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins
Percy Jackson's Greek Gods by Rick Riordan
The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan

Friday, December 26, 2014

Review: All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

Title: All the Bright Places
Author: Jennifer Niven
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Release Date: 7 January, 2015
Source: Penguin Australia

Theodore Finch is fascinated by death, and he constantly thinks of ways he might kill himself. But each time, something good, no matter how small, stops him.

Violet Markey lives for the future, counting the days until graduation, when she can escape her Indiana town and her aching grief in the wake of her sister's recent death.

When Finch and Violet meet on the ledge of the bell tower at school, it's unclear who saves whom. And when they pair up on a project to discover the 'natural wonders' of their state, both Finch and Violet make more important discoveries: It's only with Violet that Finch can be himself - a weird, funny, live-out-loud guy who's not such a freak after all. And it's only with Finch that Violet can forget to count away the days and start living them. But as Violet's world grows, Finch's begins to shrink.
Review by Nara

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Review: Beware the Wild by Natalie C. Parker

Title: Beware the Wild
Author: Natalie C. Parker
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal Fantasy, Mystery/Thriller
Source: HarperTeen via Edelweiss

It's an oppressively hot and sticky morning in June when Sterling and her brother, Phin, have an argument that compels him to run into the town swamp -- the one that strikes fear in all the residents of Sticks, Louisiana. Phin doesn't return. Instead, a girl named Lenora May climbs out, and now Sterling is the only person in Sticks who remembers her brother ever existed.

Sterling needs to figure out what the swamp's done with her beloved brother and how Lenora May is connected to his disappearance -- and loner boy Heath Durham might be the only one who can help her.

This debut novel is full of atmosphere, twists and turns, and a swoon-worthy romance.
Review by Nara

Friday, December 19, 2014

Review: Clariel by Garth Nix

Title: Clariel (Abhorsen #4/Prequel)
Author: Garth Nix
Genre: Young Adult, High Fantasy
Source: Bookworld

Sixteen-year-old Clariel is not adjusting well to her new life in the city of Belisaere, the capital of the Old Kingdom. She misses roaming freely within the forests of Estwael, and she feels trapped within the stone city walls. And in Belisaere she is forced to follow the plans, plots and demands of everyone, from her parents to her maid, to the sinister Guildmaster Kilp. Clariel can see her freedom slipping away. It seems too that the city itself is descending into chaos, as the ancient rules binding Abhorsen, King and Clayr appear to be disintegrating.

With the discovery of a dangerous Free Magic creature loose in the city, Clariel is given the chance both to prove her worth and make her escape. But events spin rapidly out of control. Clariel finds herself more trapped than ever, until help comes from an unlikely source. But the help comes at a terrible cost. Clariel must question the motivations and secret hearts of everyone around her - and it is herself she must question most of all.
Review by Nara

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Review: Noggin by John Corey Whaley

Title: Noggin
Author: John Corey Whaley
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Source: Bookworld via their Readers Rewards program

Listen — Travis Coates was alive once and then he wasn’t.

Now he’s alive again.

Simple as that.

The in between part is still a little fuzzy, but he can tell you that, at some point or another, his head got chopped off and shoved into a freezer in Denver, Colorado. Five years later, it was reattached to some other guy’s body, and well, here he is. Despite all logic, he’s still 16 and everything and everyone around him has changed. That includes his bedroom, his parents, his best friend, and his girlfriend. Or maybe she’s not his girlfriend anymore? That’s a bit fuzzy too.

Looks like if the new Travis and the old Travis are ever going to find a way to exist together, then there are going to be a few more scars.

Oh well, you only live twice.
Review by Nara

Friday, December 12, 2014

Review: Borderlands by Skye Melki-Wegner

Title: Borderlands
Author: Skye Melki-Wegner
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Source: The ReadingRoom. Thank you!
Goodreads | The Reading Room

The action-packed adventure continues in the second book of the Chasing the Valley trilogy!

Danika and her crew of escaped refugees are seeking the safety of the Magnetic Valley – and trying to evade Sharr Morrigan, the king's most lethal hunter. But the borderlands they must cross to reach the Valley are smugglers' territory: lawless, wild and steeped in ancient magic. When one of the crew is badly wounded, Danika turns to the smugglers for help – and accepts a bargain that might prove deadly.

It is Lukas, however, who hides the most dangerous secret. What has he seen through the eagle's eyes? The answer can be found in an alchemy charm and a smuggler's tale, and will lead Danika and her friends to an electrifying, unputdownable showdown.

Review by Nara

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Review: Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore

Title: Bitterblue (Graceling Realm #3)
Author: Kristin Cashore
Genre: Young Adult, High Fantasy

Eight years have passed since the young Princess Bitterblue, and her country, were saved from the vicious King Leck. Now Bitterblue is the queen of Monsea, and her land is at peace.

But the influence of her father, a violent psychopath with mind-altering abilities, lives on. Her advisers, who have run the country on her behalf since Leck's death, believe in a forward-thinking plan: to pardon all of those who committed terrible acts during Leck's reign; and to forget every dark event that ever happened. Monsea's past has become shrouded in mystery, and it's only when Bitterblue begins sneaking out of her castle - curious, disguised and alone - to walk the streets of her own city, that she begins to realise the truth. Her kingdom has been under the thirty-five-year long spell of a madman, and now their only chance to move forward is to revisit the past.

Whatever that past holds.

Two thieves, who have sworn only to steal what has already been stolen, change her life forever. They hold a key to the truth of Leck's reign. And one of them, who possesses an unidentified Grace, may also hold a key to her heart...
Review by Nara

Monday, December 8, 2014

The TBR Tag

I've been tagged by Laura @ Laura Plus Books! Thanks Laura :)

Friday, December 5, 2014

Review: Talon by Julie Kagawa

Title: Talon
Author: Julie Kagawa
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal Fantasy
Source: Harlequin Teen Australia via NetGalley

Long ago, dragons were hunted to near extinction by the Order of St. George, a legendary society of dragon slayers. Hiding in human form and growing their numbers in secret, the dragons of Talon have become strong and cunning, and they're positioned to take over the world with humans none the wiser.

Ember and Dante Hill are the only sister and brother known to dragonkind. Trained to infiltrate society, Ember wants to live the teen experience and enjoy a summer of freedom before taking her destined place in Talon. But destiny is a matter of perspective, and a rogue dragon will soon challenge everything Ember has been taught. As Ember struggles to accept her future, she and her brother are hunted by the Order of St. George.

Soldier Garret Xavier Sebastian has a mission to seek and destroy all dragons, and Talon's newest recruits in particular. But he cannot kill unless he is certain he has found his prey: and nothing is certain about Ember Hill. Faced with Ember's bravery, confidence and all-too-human desires, Garret begins to question everything that the Order has ingrained in him: and what he might be willing to give up to find the truth about dragons.
Review by Nara

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Review: Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch

Title: Snow Like Ashes
Author: Sara Raasch
Genre: Young Adult, High Fantasy
Release Date: 14 October, 2014
Source: Balzer + Bray via Edelweiss

A heartbroken girl. A fierce warrior. A hero in the making.

Sixteen years ago the Kingdom of Winter was conquered and its citizens enslaved, leaving them without magic or a monarch. Now, the Winterians’ only hope for freedom is the eight survivors who managed to escape, and who have been waiting for the opportunity to steal back Winter’s magic and rebuild the kingdom ever since.

Orphaned as an infant during Winter’s defeat, Meira has lived her whole life as a refugee, raised by the Winterians’ general, Sir. Training to be a warrior—and desperately in love with her best friend, and future king, Mather — she would do anything to help her kingdom rise to power again.

So when scouts discover the location of the ancient locket that can restore Winter’s magic, Meira decides to go after it herself. Finally, she’s scaling towers, fighting enemy soldiers, and serving her kingdom just as she’s always dreamed she would. But the mission doesn’t go as planned, and Meira soon finds herself thrust into a world of evil magic and dangerous politics – and ultimately comes to realize that her destiny is not, never has been, her own.
Review by Nara

Monday, December 1, 2014

Read ALL THE BOOKS Update: October/November

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.

My definition for "unread" either means that I haven't read the book at all, or that I haven't read that particular copy of the book (might have read it before as an eARC or something)

So, here's my update for October and November! They're combined because I didn't read too many books from my shelves in October, and thought I'd wait until the end of November to do an update. I had exams during November, so I thought I'd read less, but I shouldn't have underestimated my procrastireading skills... Anyway, onto the update!