The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness

“I am not the chosen one”

A pretty cool read I would like to rate: 4.5 Stars

This was one imaginative/creative story! I received this as part of the YA Chronicles pack having no idea what it was about other than the great reviews I heard.. When I started reading it I thought this was a contemporary YA story that taps into real youth issues only to find it cleverly intertwines with paranormal!!! Very well written, quite cleverly constructed, it was quite unique – very different to what I have read in the past where main characters are part of the main event, this felt as though the story was told by the main character who is sitting on the side lines watching the whole thing unfold whilst battling his own demons as he ‘was not the chosen one’ Well worth the read!!!

Book synopsis: Goodreads.com

-Annie

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Disruption by Jessica Shirvington

An addictive – Suspenseful – 5 star read that leaves you on the edge of your seat!!!

 Imagine a society which is controlled by a corporate giant that is working like a government to control the population by forcing them to wear a band that gives you a compatibility rating.. A band that could even identify your perfect match.. A band that can pick up a rating when you walk past a complete stranger, however, it’s a system that’s so controlled, it could work against you or even rip a loved one away from you…

Eight years ago, Mercer Corporation’s M-Bands became mandatory. An evolution of the smartphone, the bands promised an easier life. Instead, they have come to control it. Two years ago, Maggie Stevens watched helplessly as one of the people she loves most was taken from her, shattering her world as she knew it. Now, Maggie is ready. And Quentin Mercer – heir to the M-Corp empire – has become key to Maggie’s plan. But as the pieces of her dangerous design fall into place, could Quentin’s involvement destroy everything she’s fought for? In a world full of broken promises, the ones Maggie must keep could be the most heartbreaking…
Synopsis from Goodreads.com

This book is real world with a dystopian vibe.. A fantastic read I just could NOT put down.. Gripping from page one to a cliff-hanger ending that can hold you for awhile yet make you so anxious for the second and final instalment..

corruption
   The epic sequel/conclusion

-Annie

Who’s Afraid by Maria Lewis + Exclusive Blog Interview!!!

Read3r’z Re-Vu had the pleasure of meeting Maria Lewis as she joined us as our special guest author for our February Session that was themed “Diversity”. It was fantastic to get to know Maria as a new friend and as a debut author – learning about her inspiration to write and her journey to her first manuscript. Maria’s so great and we are so grateful that she agreed to be our first author for our exclusive Read3r’z Re-Vu Blog Interview!!!!

Who’s Afraid?
This is the story of Tommi, a young Scottish woman living an ordinary life, who stumbles violently into her birthright as the world’s most powerful werewolf. The sudden appearance of a dark, mysterious (and very attractive) guardian further confuses her as her powers begin to develop and she begins to understand that her life can never be the same again. The reader will be swept up in Tommi’s journey as she’s thrown into the middle of a centuries-old battle and a world peopled with expert warriors and vicious enemies – this is the start of a series – and a world – you will fall in love with.
Goodreads.com

Annie’s Re-Vu:
5 well deserved stars!!!
What an epic urban fantasy!!! In a world of Paranormal Practitioners, Askari-the nerds of the outfit and girls you just have to kick in the hoo-hah (yes they would have to be some of my favourite lines of the book) comes a story about Tommi who travels to the other side of the world for information on her estranged father, only to find that her heritage is not what she thought it to be. A carefully plotted story with creative world building and such whitty dialogue, this story brings Maori culture, legend and fantasy together. This is a gripping story that leaves you gobsmacked on the edge of your seat!!!

Exclusive Blog Interview with Author: Maria Lewis

When did you first get inspiration to write?
I’ve always enjoyed writing, yet it wasn’t so much about finding inspiration rather than being made to do a lot of writing in school. Then when I transitioned into a career as a professional journalist you don’t have the luxury of waiting to get inspired: you have multiple deadlines to hit every day and if you don’t hit them, the paper doesn’t get out so for me it has always been a case of just doing it because it needs to be done. Thankfully, it’s something I love.

What is the title of your debut novel and what inspired you to write this book?
My debut novel is called Who’s Afraid? and it’s the first in a five-book urban fantasy series published by Little Brown Books in London (Hachette Australia locally). The thing that inspired me was getting frustrated with the genre novels I was reading at the time, which all had the same type or heroine and were reliving the same tropes over and over. So I was motivated to try and write a book that I didn’t think existed in the market at the time and would be something that I would be interested in reading.

Is there any particular reason you chose this genre?
I chose it purely because I love it: I love reading urban fantasy and that felt like the genre where I had something to say. That also felt like the genre where Tommi Grayson’s story naturally ran into, but that’s not to say I don’t have ambitions outside of urban fantasy. I write non-fiction for a living in my job as a journo, plus I have designs on a crime thriller series and there’s a science fiction series I have written about a merman that’s being shopped around at the moment. I’ve also had a horror short story published in Germany, a non-fiction comic released in the UK and a romance short story here in Australia with Harper Collins so I’m loose when it comes to sticking with genre – I tend to roll where the story leads.

What’s the name of your favourite book?
Matilda.

What’s the first book you ever read?
No idea.

Where is your favourite place to read?
In bed.

If you’re not reading or writing, what would you be doing?
If not working or watching movies, the most likely option is sleep. ALL of the sleep.

If you had the chance to have a dinner date with any fictional literary character, who would it be, where would it be and why?
It would be DC Comics badass Huntress aka Helena Bertinelli from the Birds Of Prey as she’s one of my favourite comic book characters. Period. It would be at one of my favourite local sushi restaurants just because it’s delicious.

What was the last book you read?
It was Summer Skin by Kirsty Eagar which is romance novel set in Brisbane and not something I would typically read, but I tore through it in about a day. I found it an interesting location to set the story as I grew up in that area and it reminded me a lot of my late teens.

What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever received from a fan?
I had one fan come along to a Who’s Afraid? Q & A with a beautiful container full of homemade lolly cake, which she had decorated in the coolest way. Lolly cake is a traditional New Zealand treat which you can only make with this specific type of Kiwi confectionary: it’s delicious and gave me an intense sense of nostalgia. It was extra special because not only is New Zealand my home country, but it’s heavily featured in the plot of the Who’s Afraid? books. And, plus, anything vaguely food related makes my heart swell.

If your life was turned into a movie, who would you like to play you?
That would be a boring-ass movie no one would watch.

As an author, what was the best piece of advice you were ever given?
Know your genre. Whether it’s science-fiction or an Outback romance, know your genre as well as you possibly can so you know the rules, the tropes, the clichés and the restrictions – that way you can bend and break it to your will.

The Top 10: This or That 
Ice-Cream or Ice-Block?
Ice T.

Library or Bookstore?
Bookstore.

Vegemite or Peanut Butter?
Peanut Butter or die.

Chicken or Beef?
Chickeeeeeen.

Winter or Summer?
Winter.

Tea or Coffee?
Tea.

Favourite Chocolate
Whatever one is in my mouth.

Favourite Colour
Purple.

Ultimate Holiday Destination
Scotland.

When reading, I love to eat/drink…
Drink tea. I can’t eat when reading because I consume food like a savage.

Famous last words: Riots not diets.

For more on Maria and her work, head to: Maria Lewis’ website
Maria, thankyou so much for taking the time to be part of this exclusive interview for the Read3r’z Re-Vu Blog!!!!

Re-Vu and Interview by: Annie

The Syndicate by Sophie Davis

Timewaves #1

An unmissable, whimsical fun read…4.5 Stars!

“We have a novel to find, a rogue runner to locate, and a killer to stop. I’d say our dance card is pretty full at the moment.” – Stassi

If you love interesting, fun characters and time travel, you’re going to devour The Syndicate. It’s a captivating story of friendship, the glamorous 1920s, humour, thriller and history. It had me laughing out loud from the fantastic, tongue in cheek dialogue while being at the edge of my seat from the gripping plot. You will fall in love with the characters so much that it’ll be like reading about your best friends. I particularly liked Stassi and Gaige’s enviable friendship and hilarious bantering. It is also refreshing to read a story with a platonic male & female friendship/partnership without it becoming a romantic relationship. However, If you’re a romance-genre fan, don’t worry, there is an old school romance component to the story that is beautiful and charmingly executed! Plenty of heart warming moments and action.

Stassi is a loveable, whimsical character and no push over; Gaige is absolutely hilarious and the best kind of literary friend. I highly recommend this book if you want a fun read with lots of giggles and characters you can fall in love with. The duo authors (pseudonym Sophie Davis) are amazing writers, I wished I had discovered them sooner. Looking forward to book 2!

Quick Synopsis:
Stassi and Gaige are thieves from the future (year 2446) going undercover and time travel to steal artefacts from the past for the syndicate. They must go back to the glamorous, debonair period of the 1920s to steal the manuscript of a well known author, however their journey becomes a race against time to out-smart a serial killer, save each other and uncover a secret past…

Click here to read the book blurb on Goodreads.

– NJ

Yukarism Vol 1-4 by Chika Shiomi

A manga series about love transcending time…

Volume 1-4.5 Stars

In this volume we meet the main character Yukari and the two other characters Mahoro and Katsuhiko who are friends with Yukari.

Yukari is a 17 year old famous male author in the modern day. Yukari was born with memories from his past life. In his past life he was an Oiran (a beautiful, renowned high class female courtesan) from the Edo time period.

The two characters Mahoro and Katsuhiko are also reincarnation from the same time period as Yukari. These two characters don’t have their memories, but during the Edo time period they knew each other in the red light district.

– Meredith

Yukarism volumes 1-4 is a fantastic manga series about past lives, love and an ancient curse binding three incredible characters from the Edo period Japan to modern day. Story building, back story and characterisation are amazing. The story explores themes about belonging, self-sacrifice, acceptance, connections and love. The drawings are beautiful and intricate, I loved it so much that I was inspired to draw a large fan-art poster for Meredith (see below, it’s obviously not as beautiful as the actual drawings!). Recommended if you’re after a manga series that is short and sweet (some manga series can span 10+ volumes). If you like endearing characters, magic, intricate drawings and a heartfelt story about love transcending time, this is a great read to sink your teeth into!

Click here to read the story blurb on Goodreads.

– NJ

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An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

AN EPIC 5 STAR READ!!!! INTENSE!! EPIC!! BRILLIANT!! OH EM GEE!!!

This was one book I could NOT put down!!!

A page turner that had me on the edge of my seat!!! 

Set in a brutal world that is inspired by Ancient Rome and its ruthless way of ruling with an iron fist, the story is told by 2 characters: Laia and Elias.. Both from completely separate ways of life yet their destinies intertwine in such an unlikely manner sending them on a path that could lead to the start of a revolution.. twists.. turns.. betrayal.. 

A powerful and well written debut novel that is simply un-put-downable..

I need to read the sequel… NOW!!!

-Annie

The Peony Lantern by Frances Watts

A Read3r’z Re-Vu Special Event
The Peony Lantern Exclusive Read Along
5 star book and experience

On August 25, 2015: Annie, NJ, Meredith and Tien enjoyed the unique experience of The Peony Lantern read a long with author Frances Watts!!! As per Read3r’z Re-Vu tradition, we did a countdown at midnight to lead us in to the read along and Frances enhanced our read along experience by posting inspirational photos for each chapter we were reading. Such a unique experience, not only to be engaging in a read along with a lovely author – but the book really came to life in such an amazing way, it was much better than seeing a movie!!! We then had a debrief with Frances at Kura Kura Restaurant to talk about the book and enjoy a fantastic Japanese cuisine… Frances, Read3r’z Re-Vu thanks you for the exclusive time you spent with us during the read along and at our debrief dinner, we look forward to spending time with you again soon!!!

Head to Goodreads for insight into The Peony Lantern by Frances Watts

Didn’t see that twist coming!! This book had one of those endings where you need a good 5 minutes of silent reflection to absorb the shock and the “how did I not see this?” moment. Another great plot-driven book by Frances Watts. You can see the extensive effort and research she has put into writing this story set in Edo, Japan. The idea of a peasant girl selected to work as a lady’s maid for a Samurai’s Court immediately sounded intriguing and indeed it was! If you’re after mystery, class systems, friendships, betrayals, journeys, beauty, love, culture and history in a plot gripping YA quick read, I highly recommend this book!!!
-NJ

This is officially one of my favourite books.. I learnt a lot about 19th Century Japan, Japanese art and culture.. The plot really gets your mind ticking and I really did not see the twist coming towards the end.. the book was such a roller coaster ride!! So elegantly written, so insightful, you can tell the author has put in a lot of effort and research into this book, I thoroughly enjoyed it – one I could not put down!!!
-Annie

I was late in starting this book yet I finished it about 48 hours before everyone else did. This book is fantastic, a lot of research was put into this and the storyline is very gripping. One of my favourites…
-Meredith

The plot itself was truly enjoyable. The first half wasn’t slow but the pace was ramped up in the second half and it really became un-put-down-able then. You just want to keep going to find out what the secret really is (I guessed correctly for this part) and then, you want to find out the answer to the mystery (this was a twist I appreciate). The Peony Lantern engaged my interest from the beginning and had me enthralled to the end. If you’re a parent, let me assure you that this book is clean. There’s a bit of romance but Kasumi was quite the sensible girl to the end (and I just love her all the more!). There are many themes / topics for good conversation of gender, rank, education, culture, etc. I won’t hesitate in presenting this book as gifts to my nieces.
-Tien

Thankyou so very much, Frances Watts for this awesome experience!!!