Monday, 28 May 2012

Stacking the shelves (5).........(my 2nd shelf)

This is a meme hosted by Tynga at Tynga Reviews and is to haul all the books we have got this week, whether bought physical or e-book, whether for review,from the library, won in a giveaway as a prize or even borrows from a friend. With this you can supply your link and then see what everyone else has bought.   I think this is a great idea so i am joining and they are on 'Stacking the Shelves 5'.  The meme starts on  a Saturday, but you can join all week.  Because this is only my 2nd haul recently, i'm calling it my 2nd shelf lol. I know i'm odd and weird. So this is my haul;

Paperbacks and hardbacks
These are the paperbacks and hardbacks that i have received over the last 2 weeks.....the books that i haven't paid for myself will have an annotation next to them.

(my copy of above is a different cover to the one linked and i was surprised to find it was a signed copy!)
(she is now one of my favourite authors so i want to read ALL her books)
'The Camera Never Lies' by Tess Daly (I won this in a giveaway, see previous post,It's SIGNED too)
(The above book was bought because I want to read the 2nd in the series which i have for review)



Kindle (Review)

Sunday, 27 May 2012

Winning Streak....maybe????

Before, i start this blog post, i want to say that i am only posting these wins mainly for my own record but also because i am so happy and i want to say thanks the blogger who has held a giveaway contest, to give them some credit that is due.  It is not too brag!!!!

 Now the blogger who held this giveaway- i follow them on youtube, twitter and their blog and i'm a big fan of hers.  When she hauled this book and reviewed it, i was thrilled and when she posted the giveaway post i almost had an heart attack with excitement, seriously. I mean read my comment's left on the post, but this giveaway was done properly through 'rafflecopter' and the publisher sent me the copy from themselves.
The blogger is Debra at Debra's Book Cafe, which i am sure you are all familiar, with so i have so my very own copy of 'The Camera Never Lies by Tess Daly'.  Thank you so much for hosting this giveaway Debra, it is very much appreciated.  

I am SOOO in love with this book, the picture doesn't do it justice but the lettering and her dress is all glittery and it feel gorgeous. I just love it.  Imagine my shock when i opened it up to find that it was a signed copy for Tess herself. OMG!!!!! I am just so so happy. I cannot wait to read this book.  The order of my TBR pile changes by the second.

Friday, 25 May 2012

Early Review-Saving June

UK cover.

Saving June
by Hannah Harrington

Paperback: 336 pages
Publisher:Harlequin UK Mira Ink (1 Jun 2012)
Language English
ISBN-10: 1848450958
ISBN-13: 978-1848450950

Firstly, kind thanks to the publishers, for granting me the permission to review an early release of this book via Netgalley, for no charge, for an honest review.  This book was read on my computer as the arc was to be downloaded onto adobe
Book description.

‘If she’d waited less than two weeks, she’d be June who died in June. But I guess my sister didn’t consider that.’

Harper Scott’s older sister has always been the perfect one so when June takes her own life a week before her high school graduation, sixteen-year-old Harper is devastated. Everyone’s sorry, but no one can explain why.

When her divorcing parents decide to split her sister’s ashes into his-and-her urns, Harper takes matters into her own hands. She’ll steal the ashes and drive cross-country with her best friend, Laney, to the one place June always dreamed of going, California.

Enter Jake Tolan. He’s a boy with a bad attitude, a classic-rock obsession and nothing in common with Harper’s sister. But Jake had a connection with June, and when he insists on joining them, Harper’s just desperate enough to let him. With his alternately charming and infuriating demeanour and his belief that music can see you through anything, he might be exactly what she needs.

Except June wasn’t the only one hiding something. Jake’s keeping a secret that has the power to turn Harper’s life upside down again.

My Review.
Firstly, many thanks to Harlequin UK for granting me the early review of this book for which it was kindly received via Netgalley.  The arc was sent as a download version onto my laptop to read via Adobe.  Has soon as i read this book description i had to read it, it sounded full of mystery and suspense with some possible romance there with a bad boy- always seems to be a winner.  This book didn't fail to impress, i thought it was most definitely impressive, it is mainly a road trip for a very important reason and the reader gets sucked into the story and it feels like they are there on the trip with them.  It is a book with some mystery and suspense surrounding certain characters but for me, this wasn't that strong a theme through the book, compared with other emotions; fun, laughter, love, passion, tragedy, upset, sadness and as well as a road trip, it was a roller coaster of emotions, it is also a journey for the reader, and for the characters.

The main characters are Harper, Jake and Laney. Harper is June's sister, with Jake being the boy with mystery/secrets and Laney is Harper's best friend.  These are the 3 who go on the road trip to California with June's urn.  Initially, Harper cannot really stand Jake, she is a girl who is also meant to be the 'bad' one in the family, being rude, poor grades and living in her sister's shadow to her parents who have divorced.  What we learn about Harper is how different she is from what she is 'meant' to be and how many questions and blame she puts on herself for June's death.  Her character does grow on you extremely easily and as well as being on this road trip, she is also on a journey of self-discovery and seems to grow up.  Jake in the description is made out to be this bad-ass rocker but i don't believe he was at all; he worked in a music shop, loved music and had a vast knowledge of songs, artists and albums that swan over the years.  He was previously meant to be a bad-ass but i don't believe he was in this book.  He is a completely compassionate guy, who is a good listener, good with advice and as a reader he kinda makes you swoon.  Yes if you could fall for a guy in a book, Jake would be one! Laney, not so much a strong main character but she is important during the story; she is the complete opposite of Harper but she is a fun-loving, sociable, addicted to guys and precarious.  She is another character on a journey in this book, she grows up, becomes sensible and responsible for her actions, as well as realises she can be like this but still have fun.

This is the first road trip book i have read, and i never thought i would enjoy it, but i loved it!  Has well as all the references that Jake made to songs and artists- you can hear the songs in your head as they are played in the van on the trip, there was also reference to places on the trip and events, they meet new people and stay in different places.  I loved the soundtrack list in the back of the too for each of the CD's, i thought this was funny and cute but quite important too.  So has i said, i LOVED this book, i really did, i was completely enthralled with this story. I couldn't get enough, i couldn't put it down and i was sad that it had finished.

I am not a big fan of quotes from books but there were two that just jumped out and almost bite me so i had to include them;
*"He took his pain and turned it into something beautiful. Into something that people connect to. And that's what good music does. It speaks to you. It changes you."
*"“If you really want things to change, you can make them change no matter where you are.”

Obviously, i gave this book 5 out of 5 stars.

Early Review- The Good Father By Diane Chamberlain

UK book cover,better than US in my opinion.
The Good Father,
By Diane Chamberlain.

Publisher: Harlequin UK
Imprint: MIRA
Pub Date: June 01, 2012
ISBN: 9781408969793
Pages: 368

Firstly, kind thanks to the publishers, Harlequin UK, for granting me the permission to review an early release of this book via Netgalley, for no charge, for an honest review.  This book was read on my computer as the arc was to be downloaded onto abode

Book description.

A beloved daughter. A devastating choice. And now there's no going back.

Four years ago, nineteen-year-old Travis Brown made a choice: to raise his newborn daughter on his own. While most of his friends were out partying and meeting girls, Travis was at home, changing diapers and worrying about keeping food on the table. But he's never regretted his decision. Bella is the light of his life. The reason behind every move he makes. And so far, she is fed. Cared for. Safe.

But when Travis loses his construction job and his home, the security he's worked so hard to create for Bella begins to crumble...….

Then a miracle. A job in Raleigh has the power to turn their fortunes around. It has to. But when Travis arrives in Raleigh, there is no job, only an offer to participate in a onetime criminal act that promises quick money and no repercussions.

With nowhere else to turn, Travis must make another choice for his daughter's sake.Even if it means he might lose her.

My Review.

Firstly, many thanks to Harlequin UK for granting me the early review of this book for which it was kindly received via Netgalley.  The arc was sent as a download version onto my laptop to read via Adobe.  When i was granted access to review this book, i was beyond excited and happy! Diane Chamberlain is one of my favourite authors and therefore i had high expectations for this book before i even read the book description.

Before i say anything, i have to say that OMG, I LOVED this book! I had every right to have high expectations of it and it definitely exceeded these.  I went through so many emotions with this book; hope, joy, sadness, happiness, relief, love, tragedy, warmth to name a few and i felt i went on a journey with the characters.   I could not put it down, it was a page turner because i had to know what was going to happen and i finished this book with a day and a half. The storyline was told from  three people's point of view, who aren't necessarily connected in the beginning but the connections slowly unravel to show how they all tie together and why they are all important in this story.  We get the views of Travis, Erin and Robin.  Travis is the father of the little girl; Bella, Erin is a woman that Travis and Bella see regularly at the coffee shop and Robin is Bella's mum but why she is not involved is explained later in the book.

From these main characters (there were several other characters in the book that were part of the storyline) i have to say that i took to them all, i felt something for all of them because they had each experienced loss and tragedy in their life, and none of them had any malice about them.  Travis is an amazing guy, putting his daughter first throughout and the love he feels for her is so evident that you can feel it.  Through is life with Bella, you begin to fall in love with the absolute cuteness of this little girl who has her parents' determination, resilience and strength.  Travis seems to attract bad luck though, no matter what he does.  There is such desperation also with this character to get his daughter back! He only wanted to do good but made a bad decision.  Erin is a character who is going through so much, once again, the reader can really sense how she is feeling and can sympathise with her, she seems so lost in life that Travis and Bella give her a purpose in life.  Throughout the story Erin's character goes through a journey, one of working through heartbreak and grief; and coming out the other side, gaining strength, determination and growing as an individual. Robin, is also experiencing loss and tragedy and living a 'double life' almost,  she is a kind, warm hearted character and she also is on a journey throughout the story. She also grows as a character, becoming stronger and more determined. 

With all this occurring with these characters, the story could easily become too much, complex and confusing.  However, this is not the case because the story is very slow paced, which works perfectly as it let's you take the information in, and digest it, which enriches the story on all levels.  Whilst being such an emotional book, the writing is beautiful.  The reader isn't feed the information about the characters, you discover it yourself, you see the underlying messages, you are able to use your imagination more because you discover how it is.  Also, including all this is an element of suspense throughout the book, wondering what will happen, how does it all tie together, is it all going to 'come good' at the end or has he lost Bella forever.  In my view, there is nothing that would make this book any better, i was so sad it had finished but when i saw there was an epilogue i did a little scream because i love these. This book really has stayed with in and in fact i could read it again :)

I gave this book 5 out of 5 stars because I well and truly LOVED it.

Thursday, 24 May 2012

Book Review- New Girl.

New Girl
by Paige Harbison

320 pages
Published May 4th 2012 by Mira
 (first published January 31st 2012 by Harlequin Teen)
ISBN 184845063X
 (ISBN13: 9781848450639).

Firstly, kind thanks to the publishers, Mira, for granting me the permission to review an early release of this book via Netgalley.
This book was read on my computer as the arc was to be downloaded onto abode..

Book Description.

A contemporary young-adult retelling inspired by the classic 1938 romantic suspense bestseller Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier.

They call me 'New Girl'...

Ever since I arrived at exclusive, prestigious Manderly Academy, that’s who I am. New girl. Unknown. But not unnoticed—because of her.

Becca Normandy—that’s the name on everyone’s lips. The girl whose picture I see everywhere. The girl I can’t compare to. I mean, her going missing is the only reason a spot opened up for me at the academy. And everyone stares at me like it’s my fault.

Except for Max Holloway—the boy whose name shouldn’t be spoken. At least, not by me. Everyone thinks of him as Becca’s boyfriend…but she’s gone, and here I am, replacing her. I wish it were that easy. Sometimes, when I think of Max, I can imagine how Becca’s life was so much better than mine could ever be.

And maybe she’s still out there, waiting to take it back.
My Review.
Firstly, many thanks to Mira for granting me the early review of this book for which it was kindly received via Netgalley.  The arc was sent as a download version onto my laptop to read via Adobe.  The book was published before my Harlequin Teen, but with a different book cover.  To quickly discuss the book cover, there is such a difference between this one and the previous one, which i will include below.  Initially, i did prefer the current version, but then the older one grew on me because after reading i could see how it connected to the story.  However, when first looking at the cover with the title, you wouldn't have any clue what the book was about or what to expect.  I know the saying is not to judge a book by it's cover but people do and they have expectations of what the story is about.  The current cover does make you think of a schoolgirl with the book and the locker and the pop stripy socks, and with 'New Girl''s bingo.

The storyline is of a girl starting a boarding school, which she has wanted to go to since she was younger. She got turned down at thirteen but her parents kept applying for her and she got a place for her last year at school, it meant she had to move quite far away.  The only reason she got the place is because a student 'Becca' had disappeared.  This whole storyline didn't fit that comfortably with me or seem that believable, that one, her parent would keep applying without her knowledge because what you want as you go through your teens changes- she got the idea of boarding school from Harry Potter books!  Therefore, it could have just being a phase she was going through.  Her parents had already paid in advance without her knowledge, which considering what i have just said seems a bit far fetched and a big risk.  Plus, in the last year of schooling, the most important year, she would go to a new school, be uprooted, know no-one and risk affecting her grades, surely parents wouldn't do that and also would a teenager in this situation actually go when the idea has phased out. There were other 'situations' that occurred during the story that seemed so far-fetched and so questionable that it wasn't believable. I will mention these later in the review.

Apart from this, i really enjoyed the book.  It was given from two points of view- Becca's and also the new girl- Interestingly we don't find out her name until the end! I didn't even realise this till past half way.  The different view points made the story far more interesting as you got an all round view of the characters and events.  It begins with both Becca and the new girl starting at the school and then alternates with the chapters, but thankfully it states whether it's Becca's chapter or not, so the reader doesn't become confused.  It sort of answers questions that the new girl has, by giving Becca's side of the story, which is really from the past (the year before).  The storyline is definitely enhanced by doing it this way rather than just a flat storyline from the new girl's view of starting the school.

There is several character's in this book that feature in both points of view-the main ones been; Dana, Max and Johnny.  I easily took to the new girl's character, she is just your normal kind hearted teenager who aims to please.  Becca was a complex character that i disliked initially, she was rude, arrogant, b*tchy, selfish, and i could go on but as the story goes on, you realise that this is all a front and really she's a lost and lonely person wanting to be loved and she does this by being the centre of attention.  Becca's character is pushed by the narrator in my view, it's sort of spoon fed that 'this is how she is', she's not given the chance to develop from the reader's perspective.  Now a character that is given this chance is Dana, the room mate to Becca and then the new girl.  She is there, in the background and you aren't told about her but she seems sort of dark, miserable, moody and obsessive- you are not told from the narrator that she is x,y,z, if you get what i mean.  This is fantastic because you discover it as a reader and you begin to understand and from that you get your answers and her character seems to blossom.  Interestingly, part of the storyline is that Becca's belonging are still in the room that the new girl moves into, now i am sure this would not be the case in the school and they would move them! again another unbelievable part of the plot.  However, the story wouldn't be the same if this didn't happen.  Another character is Max, you see two very different sides of him from each of the girl's views  and how he treats them differently.  Johnny seems to be the same from both sides and is a kind caring guy with some mystery about him.  Funnily enough both the girls fell for the same guy!!

The characters, even though in a boarding school, seem to party a lot (security taking no notice and umm what about the teachers?? so not believable again but hey never mind, the plot would not happen without this) and there is a lot of drinking, some drugs, and sexual encounters.  It doesn't go into detail or be descriptive with the sexual encounters but you just know what is happening, and it happens so often and so freely.  It didn't bother me too much but it wouldn't sit comfortably with some people, especially as they are teenagers.  From the drinking and drugs we learn the effects and there is some horrid explanations and encounters which highlight the effects.  There could be some underlining messages in this book for teenagers in relation to the opposite sex, partying, drinking and all that goes with it and what can happen.  It feels bizarre reading a book that mentions Harry Potter and Facebook, how times change.

The story is a definite page turner, especially during some parts.  It has an eerie and mystery feeling to it, with some creepiness (going to the boathouse!) whilst being completely captivating and intriguing  because you want to know what has happened and from Becca's point of view you could find out why and how in more depth.  To be honest, I think the ending needed a bit more of a thriller aspect but overall, this book has substance to it and for that i would definitely recommend it.

I have given this book 4 out of 5 stars.

This is the other cover.

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

OMG I WON!!!!!!

I cannot believe it, I won, I won the grand prize giveaway for the Bout of books read-a-thon.  The post from their blog announcing me as the winner is here and this is the prize i have won.  To say i was shocked is an understatement, i couldn't believe it, i was so overwhelmed and so so happy.  Initially i felt like i didn't deserve it, with being a newbie to all this and this being my first read-a-thon, i thought that someone else deserved it more.  Especially since hardly anyone has even said congrats-on that page or to my twitter and i think that's really sad.  However, after some chatting to some other bloggers, i realised that everyone deserves it and everyones has the chance to win if they enter.  I have worked hard on my blog and i know i need to put more into it, which i will but it takes time to build an 'all singing and dancing blog'.  Yet, it was never my intention to have that sort of blog, i did this for me, and for the content of the blog but i will work on the aesthetics.  Another thing is that i put so much into effort into the read-a-thon as i discussed in the wrap-up, so i did participate and i even met my goals on my first read-a-thon even with all the health problems i have.  Soooooo i am really happy!!! I cannot wait to see what the lovely Shirley comes up with me for my prize.  I have definitely decided upon a bookmark design, so if anyone would like one sending when they are done let me know in the comments on via my twitter. I will post the completed design when i receive it :)

Monday, 21 May 2012

READ-A-THON WRAP-UP boutofbooks

Well it's over :( the read-a-thon has finished after 7 days and it flew by, it really did.  This was my 1st read-a-thon and i loved it.  This is the link for my goals and also on that is an overview of everyday during the week.  Each day i did a full update and posted them as individual blog posts (apart from 1 post when i did 2 days in one as i got behind due to ill health).

So my goal was to read 4 books and these were;
*The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight
*The Good Father
*Saving June
*Putting Alice Back Together.

The 1st book was mine to read and the other 3 were review books i needed to finish and review via netgalley.


Yep, i managed to read all 4 this week (1028 pages).  It was a challenge!! There was no way i could read more than this, i have too much going off in 'life' to read more.  If i didn't i think i could challenge myself to 8.  All the books i read were just amazing and i just loved each one.  I am yet to do review posts on each book BUT i will do it.......i have sticky notes and scribbles of notes all over the room so that i have my thoughts there and can put them together into the review, so watch out :) I am soooo happy about accomplishing this and so proud of myself :) 

BOUTOFBOOKS CHALLENGES- There were some fantastic challenges, ones that made you really think but were interesting and fun!! I only entered a few at the start of the week and then unfortunately i was too busy to complete the ones later on.  I was really disappointed because they seemed such great challenges to do.. This is a target goal for my next read-a-thon, to do all the challenges if they are international.

TWITTER- I did go on twitter quite a bit and learnt about tweetdeck (which i have now lol) and learnt some new tips with it lol (i'm a novice).  I chatted to some lovely people on there- especially Ellie and Jen who always posted to me on my blog and chatted on twitter and backed me up ;) (Ellie lol).  Anyways, the twitter chats-i managed to say hi and a couple of posts in 1 that was at 2am our time...i was too tired to continue though.  Then unfortunately i couldn't make the other 2, i planned to attend Sundays, however, i was reading that final book and couldn't stop.  Again, a target for next time is to participate in at least 1 twitter chat and to tweet a little bit more than i did.  I did good for a novice though lol.

Blogs- I read some blog posts, comments on a few but added loads to my favourites tab and also joined them on google reader (this is all new to me-normally i just use my favourites tab lol)  I just didn't have time to do all i wanted with reading blogs, commenting etc.  However, i have time now and i will do this and check out the blogs and do some commenting.  I just feel a bit guilty that i didn't get the chance to read people's updates as they were going- it was only what ppl said on twitter that i knew some people's progress.  My own blog i have explained. I definitely want to improve my blog, to re-arrange it and do some regular fun posts etc, but for now, i have all the reviews to do.

Overall, i can't believe how much i feel i have got from this read-a-thon and thank you so much to the women who hosted it, who took their time to put it together, to twitter etc and cause themselves mental and physical exhaustion- not forgetting they were also reading books and have 'life' commitments etc.  I will be participating in the next 1 which i believe is in August (bout of books 5.0). I am so excited!! I am not sure my goals in view of books but from reflecting on this week, i have some non-book goals *happy smile* , it will be the summer holidays from school so i have my kids home so i don't think i will go for 4 books.

********Well done everyone, thanks for making my feel welcome and thanks for the support and encouragement.**************
I hope this wrap-up is enough x

Read-a-thon,Day 7 update

Just a quick update on day 7 because i am going to do a big wrap up post shortly.  Day 7, the last day to read and i had 1 book to go to meet my goal of the 4 books.  I honestly thought that there was no way i would manage to read a full book in a day but i really wanted to meet my goals, especially as this was my 1st read-a-thon.  I had done some snippets of reading in the morning around having a lie in and the kids being crazy.  Luckily, in the afternoon i had some mummy time and i was able to read for hours and hours with breaks for toilet trips and snack trips.  In the evening i read for hours too and i finally finished the last page of my book around close to midnight was that lol.

Update for Day 7 (Sunday). An amazing day!!!

BOOK READ: Today i read 'Putting Alice Back Together' by Carol Marinelli (it was an ebook on the computer for review via netgalley) and i managed to finish it, woohoo. Review will be completed after the read-a-thon. 
BOOKS COMPLETED: The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, The Good Father, Saving June and Putting Alice Back Together. Yep you got it i managed to read them all, woohoo.
PAGES READ TOTAL TODAY: 291pages.  That is an absolute record for me during this whole read-a-thon, but i only read so many because i knew i had to finish this book today.
PAGES TOTAL:  1028 pages, pretty good i think. I am not comparing myself to others lol but i'm so tempted too.

Time for me to do my wrap-up and all my thoughts.............

Read-a-thon-Day 6 UPDATE

I thought yesterday and the day before were fails, until today, when i realised what a complete epic failure i could be on a day during the read-a-thon.  I read that few pages that it could be completed within the hour!  Now, i do not have any excuse really, because i had time to read! I just couldn't be bothered :( The page number amount i read was only so i could finish the 3rd book 'Saving June'.  I think i was disheartened from the previous day because i had wanted to finish that book then, ready to start book 4 'Putting Alice Back Together' by Carol Marinelli today.  I absolutely loved the 'Saving June' book and i spent a lot of time thinking about it afterwards, i really have read some great books this week.  Tomorrow, i am going to have too read a full book in a day and it's almost 300pages...yikes!!! not sure whether it is achievable :( I would HATE to not meet all my goals.

Update for Day 6 (Saturday).Complete failure day for reading

BOOK READ: I continued with 'Saving June' and managed to finish it, woohoo. Review will be completed after the read-a-thon.
BOOKS COMPLETED: The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, The Good Father and 'Saving June'.
PAGES READ TOTAL TODAY: 33pages.  The target was 50  and even that was low and i didn't met it but the book only had 33 pages until completion, once read and finished, i needed a break.  I should have started the 4th book.
PAGES TOTAL:  737 pages, pathetic!!!!!!!

Target for Day 7=291 to start and finish book 4 'Putting Alice Back Together'. I do not think it is going to happen though :(

Saturday, 19 May 2012

Read-a-thon,DOUBLE UPDATE,DAY 4 & 5

I got really behind with my updates, participating with challenges and reading blogs due to life lol.  My health has being pretty rubbish- i do have a few health problems that flare up.  The only thing that didn't suffer too much was my reading.  I have combined the updates rather doing a separate day for each.  I'm feeling like this read-a-thon is getting worse as it's going on and that i am losing motivation.  I have also decided when it has finished i will not be reading for a few day and will enjoy doing other things for a while, unless, i can't resist the urge to start reading divergent lol.  Yes i know i'm behind everyone with just starting Divergent but even worse- I've only just started reading the Twilight series and i'm 1/4 way through the 1st book....ekkk. Told you i was behind lol. However with Twilight i wasn't adamant that i wasn't going to read them but i gave in.

Update for Day 4 (Thursday)

BOOK READ: Today i started reading 'Saving June' by Hannah Harrington.
BOOKS COMPLETED: The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, The Good Father and 'Saving June' I am half way through 130/233pages.
PAGES READ TOTAL TODAY: 130pages.  The target was 150 but this was close enough.
PAGES TOTAL: 634 in 3 days...that's rubbish when people have read 600 in a day lol.
I read small snippets all day and managed a couple of solid hours once the kids were in bed.  Considering this i have managed to get through a lot of the book.  It must be because i'm loving it xx

Target i set for tomorrow ..... is 100 pages.

Update for Day 5 (Friday).Complete failure day for reading

BOOK READ: I continued with 'Saving June', I wanted to get through it all today. However, due to certain situations this didn't happen and i wanted to read this book to the end because it was such a apge turner.
BOOKS COMPLETED: The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, The Good Father and 'Saving June' I am half way through 200/233pages.
PAGES READ TOTAL TODAY: 70pages.  The target was 100 but i'm surprised i even managed 70, felt like 35-40 at the most!! I sent a low target because i knew that i was busy today but secretly i hoped that i would get through more to finish the book.  I had only 33 pages to read.
PAGES TOTAL:  704 pages, that just seems pitiful really.

Target for Day 6= 50 pages.

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Read-a-thon, Day 3 update.

Today i wanted to make up for yesterday and i had set a target in mind of 200pages.  Also i was determined that i was going to finish book 2 'The Good Father' by Diane Chamberlain.  I managed to do quite a bit of reading and i am sure that the word count per page must be a lot more than some books.  I did some block reading when i got long periods of time to read and then i did loads of snippets reading.  This book was on the laptop as an e-book because it is a book for review, so i left it open all day.

I managed to read 186pages (close enough to target for me) and that was the end of the book. I completed it. Woohoo :) I was sad it had finished in a way because i LOVED it. I LOVE Diane Chamberlain's books, her writing is just beautiful.  I will do a full review on my blog after the read-a-thon.  I have a pile of reviews to do and tons of sticky notes everywhere to write them lol.  I finished the book at 9.20pm and i thought rather than start book 3, i would watch youtube videos, go on twitter, chat, check out blogs, do some blogging, good reads etc.  It's now gone 2am and time has flown by but i am wide awake, not good but i do not feel i have done everything that i needed too.

BOOK READ: The Good Father :)
BOOKS COMPLETED: The Statistical.....(see above i hate typing it out lol) and The Good Father.
PAGES TOTAL: 504 in 3 days...that's rubbish when people have read 600 in a day lol. But i have decided to just enjoy my reading because i will never ever achieve that, it's not a competition and i shouldn't compare myself to others.

Target for tomorrow ..... is 150 pages, i can hope. I am going to be so tired and it's a busy day with the kids.  If i manage 100 i will be happy. I am free on friday afternoon hopefully so i can get through some extra then. :)

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Read-a-thon Day 3 challenge.

Today, as part of the Bout of books 4.0 read-a-thon, the challenge is hosted by Book Devoured.  The challenge is to take a book cover and re-name the title to something you decide.  I didn't know if this would be hard or easier but i knew i was going to struggle to publish my response.  I couldn't paste over the books on the book or delete anything so i'm going to show the original and then what i change.  The title i pick doesn't necessarily 'match' the story of the book but is to go with the picture on the cover.  Never judge a book by it's cover though hey?!?

I picked the book; Saving June by Hannah Harrington......


             I Spy.....

and the writing at the top would say......

               I spy with my little eye,
                something beginning with 'D'

Not very good i know but that's my attempt, lol.  Great challenge, something different!  I cannot do a book description with my new title though.

Read-a-thon; day 2 UPDATE.

Urgh, today felt like a complete failure!!!!!! I had a difficult appt at the hospital in the morning and that put a downer on the day and no motivation to read at all.  The kids were also on a 'crazy day' so little mummy time to read and when they were sleeping, i was zonked. I even feel asleep with my laptop on my knee-not good!!  The problem is that 3 of my books are on the computer for review as an e-book, i wish they were sent to my kindle as it would make it easier to read but never mind.  I did well considering everything.

On a happier and lighter note, i met my target for myself that i set yesterday, woohoo, proud! I knew today would be difficult with the hospital appointment and that's why i only set a small target.  I did complete my 1st book, the hardback- The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight (I HATE typing that out all the time lol) and i LOVED the book, blog post review will be coming after the read-a-thon!! Also  I'm almost half way through my other book...The Good Father by Diane Chamberlain.....i LURRVVEE this book!

BOOK READ: The same books as yesterday and see above :)
BOOKS COMPLETED: The Statistical.....(see above i hate typing it out lol) and i'm 104/290 of The Good Father...that's almost half way yes??
PAGES READ TOTAL TODAY: 120 pages (80pages from the book i completed and 40pages of The Good Father.
PAGES TOTAL: 318 in 2 days...that's rubbish when people have read 600 in a day lol.

Target for tomorrow ..... is 200 pages, i can hope, hehe.

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Read-a-thon-Day 2 challenge

I am loving the read-a-thon! Today is going a lil slower than expected but i will do a FULL update later.  Right now i am going to do the 'this or that' challenge which is hosted by Nyx book reviews.

Physical book or eBook?
Physical book, there's nothing better than the true book and print in your hand.  There is a place for e-book and i do love them but physical are my favs.

Paperback or Hardcover?
Paperback, hardcover can be too heavy and awkward to read

Reality or Make-believe?
Make-believe, i have enough reality with life!!

Adult or Young-Adult?
Both! but right now i'm leaning towards YA more.

Dog ears or Bookmarks?
BOOKMARKS! Don't damage a book, plus booksmarks can be so much prettier.

Breaking the spine or Barely open the book?
I try my very best NOT to break the spine.  

Tea or Coffee?
LOVE coffee but at the moment i'm drinking tea a lot.

Reading in bed or On the couch?
I prefer to read on the couch as i fall asleep in bed butt on a night i read in bed :)

 Series or Standalone?
If it's a brilliant page turner book with characters i love then i'd want a series.

Original or TV Adaptation?

 Defy motion sickness or Audiobooks?
I don't suffer from motion sickness thankfully.  I have never listened to an audiobook.

Author crushes or Who-was-that-guy-again?
Who-was-that-guy again    

Interview or Guest post?
Interview- i'm nosy lol.

Thank you for reading, my day 2 update will be published later :)

Read-a-thon, DAY-1 update.

Ok I am posting my updates all together on my goals page so when i look back, i can see it all at a glance but also i am doing a separate blog post for each day. This is my 1st read-a-thon and it has got off to a great start and i am seriously loving it.  I'm enjoying all the reading, i've not read like this since i was a teenager and before i had kids! and i'm interacting with ppl from the book blogging community via twitter and blogs. I am shattered from all the reading and taken loads of caffeine but it can be difficult to get time to read, I worry about how much time i will have on the following days, oh dear!

BOOK READ- I am reading 2 books- The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight and The Good Father. Reason for this is one is paperback and the other an e-book on the computer.  I could read the paperback easier than the e-book.
BOOKS COMPLETED- None, but 134/215 from love 1st sight and 64/290 from the The Good Father.
PAGE READ TOTAL- 198.....pretty impressed with that but i read alot! There were plenty of hours when i didn't read though.

Target for tomorrow as i have hospital appointment= 100pages.

Wow the kindness ..........

I am so amazed at the kindness of individuals and the actions they take to make people happy.  The act of human kindness seems none existence these days, but actually it is thriving in some places, especially in the book blogging community.  One of these individuals is Ellie, (her kickass blog is;  she was giving away random books, due to moving, and having far too many on her shelves and posted a note on twitter.  I said 'me please' but didn't think i would be chosen (i believe she gave to a few people-see how generous that is!) or that the random book would be one i didn't knew.  Bless her, she looked at my goodreads wishlist and sent me........................................

Yes, she sent me Divergent by Veronica Roth. HOW FRICKING AMAZING IS THAT!!!! I MEAN SERIOUSLY.  I was blown away!!!! I literally screamed and jumped up and down hugging the book lol, it doesn't even look like it has being read.  OMG i am in love with the cover, way more spectacular than i thought when i saw it on Youtube--it's all shiny and special. I WILL TREASURE THIS BOOK! I have wanted to read it for ages.........and now i have it 'BIG SMILES'
I have twittered like crazy about this and overly said thanks to Ellie, she's going to think i'm crazy,lol. Did i say......i'm so happy, she made my day!!!! my month even!!! lol

Sunday, 13 May 2012

Read-a-thon; boutofbooks

Woohoo, a read-a-thon, my first one and i am super excited!!  This  read-a-thon is hosted by Bout of Books.

I will be doing an update everyday on my blog using the schedule from 'Bout of Books' to make it easier (see below), keeping update on my twitter & my Goodreads account, and participate in the twitter chats if i am able too.  For me, i have sent myself a big enough goal (see below) with being a full-time mum and having health problems at present means i need to sleep a lot.  I am determined, put not going to put pressure on myself and ENJOY IT BECAUSE IT IS ABOUT FUN!.  Some people have 10 books as their goal and i am like wow, i am struggling with the thought of 4.

My goal is 4 books and mainly review books because i need to get through them and this is an ideal opportunity;

Book 1*Saving June
Book 2*The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight
Book 3*The Good Father
Book 4*Putting Alice Back together

I also plan to meet new bloggers and check out new blogs.

Update plan.
5/14 Monday
Number of books I’ve read today: i'm reading 2 books at 2 and 3.
Total number of books I’ve read: Reading 2 at once
Books: 0 completed
Pages today: Almost 200pages (Book2=134, Book3=64)
Feeling: Great,proud of myself but shattered.  Reading 2 books as one is paperback and the other is an e-book.  Loving both books.  Chatting to people on twitter and visiting new blogs, happy.

5/15 Tuesday (At hospital today)
Number of books I’ve read today: Completed 1 book and almost 1/2 way through the other
Total number of books I’ve read: 1 and a 1/2 lol
Books: 1 completed
Pages today: 120pages (Book2=80, Book3=40).
Feeling:  Bit rubbish with reading today but i did finish my paperback so happy with that.  I think the e-books on my computer for review are holding me back-wish they were on my kindle.  Difficult hospital appt so felt too down to read and my kids were on a bit crazy today so no mummy time really. Better day tomorrow, fingers crossed.

5/16 Wednesday
Number of books I’ve read today: I read one book 'The Good Father'...i managed to complete it
Total number of books I’ve read: 2 books completed now and 2 to go.
Books: 2 completed- see above.
Pages today: 186pages.
Feeling: I did a lot of reading today.  I did a few block slots of reading and then lots of on and off reading- worked fine and i was determined to finish the book. I did and i loved the book, it was amazing.  I finished it around 9.20pm and i didn't see the point of starting the 3rd book when i felt i had read so much.  I wanted to catch up with goodreads, twitter and blogging.

5/17 Thursday
Number of books I’ve read today: started on book 3 (Saving June by Hannah Harrington), read 130pages..over half of book
Total number of books I’ve read: During read-a-thon so far i've read 2 books and i got 1/2 way through 3rd so well on plan to meet all my goals during read-a-thon.
Books: started on book 3 and i'm half way
Pages total; I have read 130pgs today 
Feeling: I am so proud of how much i have done today considering how much of a difficult day it was to read but i'm loving this book :) 

5/18 Friday
Number of books I’ve read today: today was just a complete fail :( i'm still reading the book that i was on yesterday, not had much time to read.
Total number of books I’ve read:Still same as yesterday :(
Books: still same as yesterday, i said today was a complete fail.
Pages total; 70pgs, completely rubbish! 
Feeling; I am just fed-up, not well, health problems flaring up, had lots of naps and then other have got a film to watch in the evening when the kids were in bed.  I felt so ill that i had an early night. I did want to finish the book though as only 33pgs left but i couldn't manage it :( I haven't done today's challenge, not done regular updates daily and not read blogs or twittered much.  Life is just too difficult sometimes :(

5/19 Saturday
Number of books I’ve read today:  If i thought yesterday was an epic fail then i had no idea that total was going to be almost zero reading.  HOWEVER, i finished book #3 today 'Saving June'
Total number of books I’ve read: During this read-a-thon i have now read 3 books and i have 1 book to go, which is 'Putting Alice Back Together' by Carol Marinelli.
Books: All 3 books read are listed above and just one more to go :)
Pages total: today, a shocking 33pgs and that was only to get to the end of the 3rd book.  I did plan on reading half the 4th book but it didn't happen and i wasn't even busy so i have idea what happened.  
Feeling: I feel like i have really let myself down, especially the last 2 days because i have 1 day l eft and 1 book, which happens to be the longest book!!! Almost 300pages both.  I am going to read all day tomorrow though if i have too.

5/20 Sunday
Number of books I've read today:I have managed to finish a full book in a was the longest book i had to read too with almost 300pages. 
Total number of books I've read: 4, which means i have met my goal.....WOOHOO!!
Books: The 4 books i read where the ones that i planned to read for my goals :)
Pages total: Today i read 291pages!!! that is the most i have ever read during the read-a-thon and has definitely made up for the last few days of rubbish.
Feeling:I feel amazing!!! I am so proud of myself! Honestly, I didn't think i could do it and i have and just wow!! what a feeling. I have all the reviews to do now, damn haha x

Saturday, 12 May 2012

MASSIVE MASSIVE book haul (1).............

One word..........oh dear.
These are the paperbacks and hardbacks that i have received over the last 2 weeks.....the books that i haven't paid for myself will have an annotation next to them.
Oh dear exactly!!

Crush by Leigh Marsden (from a giveaway)
Beauty by Leigh Marsden (from the author with the giveaway)

It doesn't end their as their is also my kindle books, the majority where for review from Netgalley and one was bought.
(for review)#
The Good Father by Diane Chamberlain (Published;1st June 2012)
The Booby Trap by Anne Browning Walker (Published; 1st June 2012)
Saving June by Hannah Harrington (Published 1st June 2012)
Timepiece by Myra McEntire (Published; June 12th 2012)
One Moment by Kristina McBride (Published; 26th June 2012)
One Breath Away by Heather Gudenkauf (Published; 19th June 2012)

Jenny Pox (Paranormals #1) by J.L. Bryan (this was free on kindle)

Wow what a lot of books to add to the shelves and loads to read!!!! I have NO idea how i am going to get through all these, it's crazy lol.  I am on a book buying ban so NO more books, i can resist buying books off Kindle BUT if it is a 'bargain' then i have to give in, i can' leave it, especially if it is on my TBR list, lol.  I am the same with paperbacks and hardbacks.....i have to purchase it. I am terrible.

So what has people being buying? Anyone read any of these books? or intererested in reading any of these?

Friday, 11 May 2012

Special thanks to........

I entered a giveaway on 'Goodreads' that was ran by Leigh, who is an author who lives in NZ. I was thrilled to pieces when i won a copy of the book 'Crush' and since Leigh is SO kind, she included a copy of her 1st book (self published) called 'Beauty'.  I am definitely adding these books to my TBR pile!!! Here is a little summary of both books.

When Philippa Ballantyne is knocked off her feet while dog-walking, she is rescued by a a knight in steel-toed boots - Ben. A handsome bee-keeper and firefighter who smells delectably of honey - who could resist him? But Philippa has recently moved back to her hometown, Glory Falls, and it seems like the past is waiting for her around every corner. She can't forget Cam, her crush, who she's adored since she was eleven years old. When Philippa hears he might be returning to Glory Falls she is excited - and scared. Should she give up someone ... perfectly good ... to follow an impossible dream? 
Her friends Gill and Sean rally around, but things aren't easy for them either. Sean is finding out just how hard it is to be gay in a small town - especially when random prejudice turns into a series of sinister attacks - and Gill is trying to revive her foundering marriage. But will one more erotic adventure save or destroy her relationship? Glory Falls is a small town with a dark heart and Philippa, Gill and Sean are about to find out just how dark it can get.

It's easier to be happy when you don't know what's going on behind the scenes. There's a reason it's called blissful ignorance ...
Mena joins a luxury motor yacht in the Mediterranean, enticed by rumours of the fast-paced, highly paid crew lifestyle. Shocked to uncover the literally sick secrets of yachting's achingly slim women and shattered by the reality of life onboard, Mena soon discovers that yachting's glamorous image is merely an illusion. During a cruise around the Balearic Islands, Mena and the yacht's crew and guests battle with illicit affairs, closet addictions and the pressure of maintaining a slender waistline. Enter a world where the quest for the body beautiful surpasses everything and nothing is as it seems.
  A novel that takes a daring look at bulimia from behind closed bathroom doors, Beauty will make readers think twice about the grim reality lurking behind today's size-zero phenomenon, while shedding light on the sleep-deprived, often drug-fuelled existence of yacht crew.

And here are my little beauties waiting to be read.........
Thanks again to Leigh :) 
The books will be reviewed on Goodreads when finished.

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Early book review- The Summer My Life Began....

The Summer My Life Began.
By Shannon Greenland.

Publisher: Speak.
Publication Date: 10th May 2012.
Pages: 256.

Firstly, kind thanks to the publishers, Speak, for granting me the permission to review an early release of this book via Netgalley.
This book was read on my kindle.

Book Description.

THE SUMMER MY LIFE BEGAN: A fabulous romance with a very unexpected guy . . .
The opportunity to explore her love of cooking . . .

The freedom to be whoever she wants . . .

This is what seventeen-year-old Em gets when she goes to spend a month at her aunt's island resort. It's a dream come true—and exactly the break Em needed from her strict family and their high expectations of her.

But when Em uncovers a long-buried secret about her family, everything changes. And suddenly, Em finds herself making some big choices about her future—choices she never dreamed she'd have the chance to make . .

My Review.
Firstly, many thanks to the publishers, Speak, for granting me the early review of this book for which was kindly received.  This book was open to everyone on Netgalley for a period of time after i was granted access, however, I was pleased that i was given the opportunity prior to this.

The book description gave me a buzz of....'I need to read this'.  A summer read with intrigue and suspense and just what i need- a light-hearted book but with interest.  Now, i was right in some aspects, this book is a lovely light-hearted summer read, there was intrigue and suspense but it didn't hit the note I expected it too.  I really enjoyed the book because it was so easy to read, i didn't have to think or really connect, I felt like I was watching a TV programme or a film and being spoon fed everything rather than having to use my mind and imagine.

The characters, some likeable- Em, Gwenny, Cade, Tilly and some not- Em's parents.  Em was dull to begin with but over time she grew on me, her character developed into a stronger, more determined and confident one.  The characters all needed more depth to them, to put some meat on them bones as such, sadly they weren't and again you were 'spoon fed' as it was told to you and not shown.  More, likely this was the style of the writing and the quick pace of the book maybe.  Another major depth that was needed, even though it was touched upon, is the connections with certain characters; Em with Gwenny, Cade and Tilly.  Don't get me wrong, you were told this but i didn't feel it, it was sort of 'oh ok', rather than 'aww or wow', the complexity of the characters connections, especially the family ones really need just that bit more depth, a bit more time to feel it  and become absorbed with the story..  The romance was lovely, nice and simple, and heart-warming, but, given the nature of the 'Summer made my life', it could have been more passionate, intense, made you feel the connection.  I do like a bit of romance though and i was really happy for Em as in...good for you girl!lol.

The storyline, for me it wasn't anything new.  It was all done before in some kind of form and i guessed the family secret way early in the book, same as I knew what was going to happen with other storylines- the romance and her career.  What I absolutely LOVED was the fact it had an Epilogue at the end to let you know what had happened a month or so on, for me that just brings all the snagging ends together beautifully and makes you close the book with a smile on your face.  I mentioned early in the review how I felt about this and lacking depth, being told not shown and the whole spoon feeding.  I didn't need to use my imagination or think, the kind of book you sometimes do just need and that's probably why I read it so quickly.  It did have interest to keep you reading, you wanted to know what was happening and gain some answers.  Even though the big intrigue is the family secret, there is also some smaller suspense storylines to add further intrigue.  I won't mention these as I don't want any spoilers in my review, but I knew what was going to happen with all these storylines quite early on too...damn!! 

Overall, I enjoyed this book, I am glad I read it and I would recommend it for a light-hearted read but I would explain what I have said.  A lot of people absolutely LOVE books likes this, an escape from life in a book but without complexity in depth or storyline- perfect!  I feel a bit harsh giving the rating I have but I feel it is justified as this, if there were halves I would say 2.5.

Sorry this review is a bit all over, rambling and lacking in parts.

I have given this book 2 out of 5 stars.

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Early Review-The Lliac House.

The Lilac House. A Novel.
By Anita Nair.

Published: 24th April 2012
Publisher: St. Martin's Press.
Pgs 352: 

Firstly, kind thanks to St. Martin's Press for granting me the permission to review an early release of this book via Netgalley.  I did start reading this 5 days prior to the due date but it took me a lot longer to read unfortunately then i planned. It was read on the Kindle.

Book Description.
Meera is happily submerged in the role of corporate wife and cookbook writer. Then, one day, her husband fails to come home. Overnight, Meera, disoriented and emotionally fragile, becomes responsible not just for her two children, but also her mother, grandmother and the running of Lilac House, their rambling old family home in Bangalore.
A few streets away, Professor J.A. Krishnamurthy or Jak, cyclone studies expert, has recently returned from Florida, to care for his nineteen-year-old daughter, the victim of a tragic accident. What happened on her holiday in a small beachside village? The police will not help, Smriti’s friends have vanished, and a wall of silence and fear surrounds the incident. But Jak cannot rest until he gets to the truth.
Meera and of Jak's paths intertwine as they uncover the truth about the secrets of their pasts and the promise of the future. The Lilac House is a sweeping story of redemption, forgiveness and second chances.
My Review.

Firstly, many thanks to St. Martin's Press for granting me the early review of this book for which it was kindly received.  I only had 5 days prior to the publication date to review this book and try as i must i could not and only finished it on the 1st May.  I will explain throughout the review.
Secondly, the book cover, misses out on the Kindle it really does. But i can see the significance of the book imagery; the lilac background and are they pomengrates and how they link with Hera-...interestingly this is mentioned at the back of the book.

Initially this book took me FOREVER to get into, on one occasion i put it down and read the information for the book and pushed myself to go with it and i got into the book really well.  What makes it difficult in the early parts is there is only small parts to grab onto.  There is a different culture with foreign names, that were new to me, and many of these included Greek mythology, all with a short space in the book and i found it really overwhelmed for the start.  But i did pick it back through and pushed through.  If i had any knowledge of Greek mythology it may have make this easier.  
Once i pushed through i did notice a bit difference, people were explained more and their character's developed and blossomed.  Anita Nair has a lovely way to describe individual characters in a way that they feel like family; it looks an some characters more in depth than others but i really warmed towards Meera as the book progressed.  So many different aspects of life is experienced-marriage, family, parent-child relationship, friendship, loss-om so many levels, and these are all are explored whilst having characters who are going through changes in their character; showing strength, determination, love, loss, grief, and making changes.  It isn't just set in the present as i said, it also goes into the past, which then explains things that are occurring in the future.

Therefore, all this jumping about tenses, the Greek mythology and the complexity of the characters is the reason why is seems a difficult read, and then added to that is the Indian culture and settings with Indian place names.  I have never read a book set in India and places names can be quite difficult to 'say it properly' meaning you can't just read the sentence in a flowing way but you stop to focus on the word.  It does show a lot about Indian culture and i did like this enrichment of the book; for one of the major topics which is 'outcasted', the book was perfect being set there.  This major topic is a massive issue (not going into for spoiler reasons) and to focus on this in a book and makes you think, wow, does this actually really happen and then you find out it does, sadly.

The Greek mythology is explained more in depth at the end and yes Meera is right to compare herself to Hera, but i had no idea about this and if there wasn't any Greek mythology in the book i think that it wouldn't have made a difference, in my eyes, it didn't add anything.  Another aspect that let the book down is that some storyline parts just weren't needed, they were short, added nothing and let you with questions and then there would be aspects went on and on,added nothing and was a waste.  Some characters needed more 'padding' to enrich their presence more rather than the briefness used. I think the book was really too long for the storyline even with the complexity.  The start and middle went on forever it seemed whereas the end and the summing up seemed to happened really quickly but those were the best bit of the book and the first bits should have being short and more focus on the medium to end and ending/summing up.

The book does seem to all come together and you don't go away feeling any sadness which is entwined throughout the book, but you feel some relief, some positivity, happiness and hope.  It's lovely how individual stories can be told about the characters and then come together and the stories fit perfectly!           
This review goes on forever and i am really sorry.  Again i did enjoy the book when i made myself read it.  The negative aspects i said let it down for me but it was BEAUTIFULLY written and a lovely book.

I gave this 3 out of 5 stars