This book is perfect for those who love crime/action books.
In the heart of Trenton, N.J., a killer is out to make sure someone gets his just desserts. Larry Virgil skipped out on his latest court date after he was arrested for hijacking an eighteen-wheeler full of premium bourbon. Fortunately for bounty hunter Stephanie Plum, Larry is just stupid enough to attempt almost the exact same crime again. Only this time he flees the scene, leaving behind a freezer truck loaded with Bogart ice cream and a dead body—frozen solid and covered in chocolate and chopped pecans. –Goodreads Synopsis.
It’s a good teen book if you’re not someone who finds the love triangles uncomfortable. I was one such person and didn’t like the main character purely because she kept kissing this other guy while she still had a boyfriend! Shocking! but, in her defence, the guy she kept getting tempted by was pretty drool worthy.
Despite my dislike of the main characters’ love triangle behaviour, this book was a funny – action packed read and went in so many different directions that I was left clueless about who the murderer was!!! I absolutely loved the best-friend, she’s described as a retired “ho” turned bonds enforcement officer who loves to bedazzle things and shoot movie auditions with a midget she hates while naked!!
Many thanks to Hachette Publishers for sending me an Advanced Review Copy in exchange for my honest review.
TIME TO GET YOUR GEEK ON!!!
Three Friends – Two Love Stories – One Convention
-FUN FUN FUN!!!-
Wow, this book was a lot of fun to read! It was so entertaining from start to finish, I virtually smashed this book in about 2 days! I love reading stories that are set at what I call “geek conventions” as I am big fan of pop culture myself so I really get wrapped up in entertaining reads like this one that follows BFFs Charlie, Taylor and Jamie who go to the SupaCon with expectations of an epic time but what they don’t expect is it will change their lives forever. I found it easy to place myself with the characters and following their journey in this book even though they switched from one character to another throughout the story. What I found unique and quite clever about this book was how the relationships between the characters were beautifully woven into the story and the strong representation of diversity within the characters. A fun, humorous story relating to strong friendships regardless of diversity and covers important themes through a positive story.
Here’s a quick Q&A with the talent behind “Queens of Geek” Jen Wilde!!
What kind of research was involved in writing Queens of Geek?
A lot! I spent hours and hours researching everything from lines at conventions to character stereotypes and tropes to avoid. I watched YouTube videos and read blogs and found twitter chats about writing different characters. I read up on autism and anxiety too, because even though I am autistic and anxious, my experiences are not the only experiences of it. I listened to what other writers and readers were saying about both harmful and positive representation and applied it to my work. There’s a wealth of knowledge out there for writers and I think I must have devoured it all, and still do.
The book cover for Queens of Geek is GORGEOUS. How much of a say did you have in the final cover?Thank you! I’m obsessed with it! The designer came up with four amazing covers, and then Swoon Reads opened up voting so people could choose their favorite. This cover had my heart from the moment I saw it, so I was secretly hoping it would get the most votes, and it did!
Can you recommend a few LGBT YA novels you’re loving at the moment?
Oh, it’s so hard to choose! I love Everything Leads to You, Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda, You Know Me Well, and Juliet Takes a Breath. I’ve also got When The Moon Was Ours, Tash Hearts Tolstoy, and Meg and Linus on my TBR.
Special thanks to Pan Macmillan Publishers for approaching me to be part of this Blog Tour and for sending me an Advanced Review Copy in exchange for my honest review.
Book No. 5 in the Geek Girl Series
The Geek Girl Series instantly transports me back to high school and all the awkwardness around social situations and life in general.
Head Over Heals is one of my favourite books in the Geek Girl series. Harriet is still as awkward as ever but it was nice to see her mature and learn to think of others (not an easy feat for 16 year olds).
Harriet is awkwardly stumbling her way through life which is very relatable. She is trying to balance family life, school friends and work drama, drama which is often a result of her social awkwardness.
Although I feel like the character Rin was a stereotype, overall I enjoyed this book and watching Harriet grow. Also, Jasper is a sweet cinnamon roll, but I feel like I might be in the minority as other fans eagerly await news of N-never mind!
Special thanks to Harper Collins Publishers for sending me a Review Copy in exchange for my honest review.
Oliver Phommavanh has just released a new novel for kids “The Other Christy” and I had the privilege of reading an Advanced Review Copy and interviewing Oliver for our blog – he’s awesome btw – before we get to the interview, here’s some light on “The Other Christy”. Highly recommended to a younger reading audience aged 8-12 years old, I still enjoyed this book as an adult. Christy Ung, a quiet, reserved girl has always been known as “The Other Christy” while being in the same class as the “loud-mouthed” Christie Owens – the most popular girl in school.
Christy Ung migrated to Australia from Cambodia and struggles with daily life as she is still a loner at school. Adjusting to Aussie life is hard enough especially when living with her traditional and clean freak Grandpa however with the help of her Aunt Mayly, Christy soon discovers when baking a cake to share with her class on her birthday, you can exhibit a positive charge to win in a negative field when you feel the world is against you. A cute, heart warming and funny read that is suitable and recommended for a younger audience. A great story about a girl called Christy – the other Christy as there are 2 in her class. A story of friendship and great lessons – highly recommended as a light hearted fun filled read that I rated 5 stars!!! Thankyou Penguin Random House Publishers for sending me an Advanced Review Copy in exchange for my review.
– Exclusive Blog Interview with Author Oliver Phommavanh –
- Who is your target audience for “The Other Christy”?
Kids aged 9 and up, but anybody will enjoy this book.
- As an adult, I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I recommend it to all readers of all ages as it really brought back memories of primary school. What was your inspiration to write this book?
As a teacher, I’ve taught shy students in my class who don’t have many friends, but when they do come of out of their shells, they attract like-minded people. So I wanted to write a story for the shy kids out there, to speak up and be heard!
- I felt there were nice lessons to be learnt in this book, for one – I learnt that exhibiting a positive charge in a negative field can help you win in difficult situations. What do you want your readers to get out of this story?
It sounds like a cliché but being yourself is the best way to make friends, or more importantly to keep friendships strong. If you’re just pretending, chances are, you’ll be found out and it won’t last.
- Why did you call your main characters ‘Christie and Christy?’
True story, I had the title in my head ten years ago. I had a crush on a girl named Christy back at university, and there was another girl with the same name that hung out in the same group. The Christy that I liked was never around, so I’d always ask, ‘where is the other Christy?’ When it came to writing the story, two girls with the exactly the same name was never going to work, so I tweaked one of the names.
- Christy appears to have trouble fitting in, in her class – do you see much of yourself or your childhood in Christy?
Christy and I share the same weird slant on life. While I was a class clown at school, I wasn’t popular. I was just that loud random kid who said funny stuff. So I found making real friends kind of hard. There were people that I would talk to at school, but that was it. Just like Christy, I wanted a friend outside of school, hanging out.
- This is clearly a story about self-discovery, growing up and friendship. Would you yourself have adopted Christy’s methods in her efforts in trying to make friends?
I think I would. Auntie Mayly offers Christy some heartfelt advice that I would gladly give to anybody who feels like they don’t fit in. I think about all the friends I’ve made, and they were simply by one or two common interests and some kindness. A smile here and there. Just being grouped together in a class isn’t enough, there needs to be some chemistry to spark friendships.
- Christy’s Grandpa is hilarious, in a story it’s funny how he’s such a clean freak and over protective although in real life, I think I would find him overbearing (lol) but I also felt sorry for him as he was burdened with a task of raising his granddaughter in a world that is foreign to his Cambodian traditions. I am wondering, what was the inspiration for “Grandpa’s” character in this story and whether he is anything like your own Grandpa?
He is very much based on my father in law! My grandpa passed away when I was five, but I’d imagine he’d also be as steely and stubborn when it comes to family traditions. My father in law’s quirks and weird habits were priceless material, but I also wanted to show his funny and sensitive side. He really does cherish his daughter (my wife) and wants to protect her, especially when they’ve just settled in a new country.
- Why was cake the means to ‘win people over’?
Food brings people together and it’s the currency used in Christy’s class. I remember teaching a class where kids would try to outdo each other with their birthday cakes that were brought in. I put on six kilos haha. It’s particularly more important for Christy because baking is her passion, so her talent and self-worth is on the line. She really is serving a slice of herself to others.
- Do you feel the reason why Christy was an outcast in her class was due to her ethnicity or cultural difference or was it more of a personality difference?
I wanted to make sure it was personality, because Christy used to be in an ESL class with other migrant kids, and they all made friends except for her.
- If ‘The Other Christy’ was going to be turned into an adaptation – would you prefer TV or film? Why?
We are living in another golden age of television, so I’d love to see it as a mini-series, where each key moment is built up over every episode. Plus there’s more scope to throw in a few other side stories too.
- When you’re not writing – what would you be doing?
Playing video games. I’ve sunk 100 hours in Xenoblade Chronicles X on the Wii U and my 3DS is my travel buddy.
- What other books have you written?
Thai-riffic!, Con-nerd, Punchlines, Thai-no-mite and Stuff Happens: Ethan
- What is your favourite restaurant and why?
I love burgers (check out my Instagram @oliverwinfree) and my favourite burger chain is Grill’d at the moment. Just wholesome burgers with some great chips on the side.
- Cast your mind to 10 years ago, would you have pictured yourself publishing your first novel back then?
Funnily enough, it was exactly 10 years ago since I quit full-time teaching. I gave myself five years to publish my first novel, so yeah I was determined to make it.
- Do you like reading? What is your favourite genre?
I’ve always been a lifelong reader, my favourite genre is contemporary stories, especially with comedy thrown in.
- Can you remember the first book you ever read? What was it?
I think it may have been a Dr Seuss or Golden Book, but just can’t make out the title.
- If you could be a character in a video game, who would you be and why?
My hero is Sonic the Hedgehog, because he’s cool, blue and fast. Three things I’m not in real life haha.
- Where is your ultimate holiday destination?
It was Japan for awhile, but now it’s America, for the food, the oversized shopping malls and American brands.
- My all-time favourite artist is Michael Jackson and my favourite song ever is Black or White – yes I still listen to this song on my iPod. What is your favourite type of music/who is your favourite singer?
I still listen to my cassette Walkman and have over 100 albums on cassette. I thought StarLord from Guardians from the Galaxy would start a revival but anyway, I do still have an i-pod classic too. I love pop music, boy bands have always filled my playlist from the Bee Gees to the Backstreet Boys and ID. My favourite singers include John Mayer, Eninem, Justin Bieber and Drake.
- As an author, what was the best piece of advice you were ever given?
Just write. Don’t wait for inspiration. Just write!
The top 10: This or That
Ice cream or Ice Block? Ice cream for sure.
Library or Bookstore? Library because I can write in there
Chicken or Beef? Chicken for the variety
Winter or Summer? Winter because I love snuggling up at night
Tea or Coffee? Tea. I don’t drink coffee
Bungee Jump or Sky Dive? Haha, I’m scared of heights. I suppose sky dive because at least I have a parachute.
Favourite Colour: Purple
Ultimate Holiday Destination: America.
Famous last words: Whatever man, I’m just doing this for the lols.
Review and Interview by Annie
A real giggle instigator – 5 STARS
This was a crack up!!! A unique and incredibly entertaining read.. It would have to be one of the feel good reads of the year and a book I can see transform into a comedy movie..
‘Attachments’ brought back fond memories of my youth in 1999 when the world was going into the new millennium and the panic of Y2K was upon us.. Told from 2 different perspectives, at one stage you’re reading intercepted email conversations between 2 besties in the office, next you’re reading from the perspective of the I.T techo who monitors all workplace emails and the awkward moment when he stumbles across the conversation the 2 besties are having… about HIM!!!
Hilarious, entertaining… such a feel good romantic comedy.. It will make you think twice about the email conversations you would want to have in the workplace..
I recommend this to anyone who has had a rough day and needs a laugh.. great book!!!
– AWESOME – LOL – 5 STAR READ – YIAYIA IS MY IDOL!!! –
“chicken fillets” .. that is all ..
In light of today’s launch of Will Kostakis’ new book “The Sidekicks” I would like to share my review of “The First Third”. This was not Will’s first book but it was the first book I read by him.. I had the pleasure of meeting Will the night I got this book at Penguin Teen Australia (PTA) Live where he told us about his writing journey, life outside of author duties and his poor Yiayia’s struggle in trying to find his new book on the shelves the day it came out..
“it can only mean 2 things when Yiayia has called me in hysterics.. 1: someone in our family has died or 2: someone on the Bold and the Beautiful has died……”
I started reading this book the moment I got on my train home. Finished it in approx. 2 days!!!
Loosely based on Will’s life, this is such a hilarious read yet it had twists and very heart felt moments that would remind you of true life events and of precious things that are close to home. I found this to be an entertaining coming of age story. The dialogue is hilariously smart and I felt in touch with the main character, it was so easy to read, it was just like watching a comedy movie.. My friends and family who were around me at the time will remember me literally giggling my way through this book!!! So my tip to you is – don’t read this on public transport (LOL)
I highly recommend it to all YA Fans who really need a laugh or a light read..
Link to synopsis of: The First Third
One very cool and geeky read.. 5 Stars!!!
I was first told about this book at a YA book seminar and given my love for the Supanova Convention and books alike, I thought I would appreciate this one… and I did!!! This was such a fun read!! I really enjoyed it..
Ana: uptight, intelligent, from a family who have set high expectations of her is captain of the quiz bowl tournament, involved in archery – engages in extra curricular activities to ensure her place in a top notch college..
Zak: laid back, funny geeky boy into comic conventions and dungeons and dragons, although intelligent, he doesn’t have much focus and is forced into the quiz bowl tournament to graduate high school..
This unlikely pair first meet in the school library then end up on the same team for the quiz bowl tournament that’s on the same weekend as Zak’s favourite annual event- comic convention: WashingCon.. In order to graduate high school, Zak is forced to participate in the quiz bowl tournament which means – giving up his favourite Con.. However.. One fateful night, both Ana and Zak are forced to go to the convention together!!! and the adventure begins..
I understood the referencing to the comic conventions which I guess is what made it really funny.. such a cool read I found myself giggling to myself when on a public commute.. This would have to be one of my favourites..