The Book of Pearl by Timothee de Fombelle

Elegant and Sophisticatedly Complex

This would have to be one of the best books I have read this year!!!

A compelling story of a first love that defines a lifetime which is told with an intricate and beautiful writing style.

The main character who we get to know as the story progresses is Joshua Pearl. He is from a world that our own no longer believes in – a world of Fairytale. Pearl knows that his great love is waiting for him in that distant place but he is trapped in our time. As his memories begin to fade, he discovers strange objects, tiny fragments of a story from a long time ago that help in piecing his life back together.

What I liked about this story is how unique it was – the storyline and how it was so cleverly written.  As Joshua Pearl is trying to piece together his memories to circle back to the one he loves after being thrown from his own world to our world, I felt just as confused as Pearl but each chapter develops – each fragment, pieces together a puzzle that guided me to the next part of the story and so on, which finally came together with an answer!!! A tale intertwines fantasy with historical fiction finding you going through the stages of World War II. This was such an absorbing read.

I recommend this to fans of fairytale retellings, historical fiction and YA fantasy.
-Annie

Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde BLOG TOUR

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.
-Annie

The Diet Starts on Monday by Tamar Chnorhokian

Blog Duet by Amanda and Annie – both rating this sweet book 4 stars

“Finding True Love Will Taste So Sweet”
Zara is size 22 – has a secret crush on the hottest boy in school who happens to have a skinny girlfriend – Zara hangs out with her best friends Carmelina and Max and she learns some of life’s hard lessons when she puts these friendships on the line and goes on a diet to win the boy of her dreams..

Amanda:
This book transported me back to high school. The emotions in this book are authentic and I found myself experiencing Zara’s emotions along with her. Set in Western Sydney, it was a real treat to be able to recognise all the places and streets mentioned in the story. I also liked how diverse the characters in the book where, which is an accurate representation of Australia. This book will make you feel a range of emotions and explores a range of issues self esteem to finding out who your true friends are. It’s always a pleasure to read an Australian story and in particular, one that discusses important issues.

Annie:
This YA Contemporary read keeps it real.. I laughed, I cringed.. I was wrapped in this story an read it in only 2 days!!! It was interesting to see that this book focused on other youth issues that do not get a lot of attention – body image and weight obsession. The teenage years are a difficult time in our lives and many books have demonstrated the challenges teens face from socio-economic to cultural differences however this book follows the story of Zara who invests her time into losing the weight she feels is needed to get the boy of her dreams who incidentally – already has a girlfriend. While reading this, I kept thinking.. WHY!? if you want to lose weight – do it for yourself not for a guy!!! What I liked most about this book was the structure.. In the beginning, it doesn’t delve into a plot line straight away, it takes you through getting to know each character and how so well defined each person is. The dialogue was quite funny and it was a lot of fun reading a book that’s set in places I recognised – Western Suburbs of Sydney!!!

Read3r’z Re-Vu recently hosted a session with theme “Snack Time” that allowed members to review a book of their choosing that related to snacks or a favourite book they remembered reading whilst enjoying their favourite snack (or crave their favourite snack). The author of this book, the lovely Tamar Chnorhokian joined us as our special guest author. We want to extend our special thanks to Tamar for taking the time to talk to us about her journey to publishing her debut novel and for the great stories she shared with us!
Tamar, we hope to see you again one day soon!!!

Into the Darkness (The Dark Angel Trilogy, Book 1) by Kat T. Masen

4.5 stars – R18+ – restricted to adults only readers

What began as an affair seven years earlier has since become a tragic love story, a tale of two souls fighting to be together with only their love to guide them. But as people make mistakes, they find themselves once again reliving the past, asking the questions that have remained unanswered. Until Now.

Recommended for adults 18+ that enjoy a good romance story that has many twists and turns. This book had me intrigued from page 1 as it gave me glimpses back to where the romance started and the chain of events that lead up to where they are in their lives now. To be honest, I did get a little frustrated at first with a few of characters telling the story in their own point of view as it repeated the same events but I still could not put this book down. I was intrigued throughout the story and what was creative was the story provided snippets of relationships that eventually all comes together.

The book has a mix of dark secrets, hot steamy (descriptive) sexual encounters with lots of emotion, wit and humour. Yes, I laughed out loud while reading some chapters. Although scenes were descriptive, there is a plot that had me engrossed from beginning to end – I just had to keep turning the page to learn more and more about the development of the characters and what happens next. The moment I finished this book, I was yearning for book two.

-Lisa

The Crown by Keira Cass

The 5th and final instalment of The Selection Series – ends with 4.5 stars!!!

From the first book of the series “The Selection”, I always described this series as The Bachelor meets Cinderella in a Dystopian Setting… As the story continues, The country of Illea still uphold their tradition of ‘The Selection’ when their heiress is born – Eadlyn Schreave. When Eadlyn became the first princess and was to hold her own Selection, she felt rather rebellious and was certain she would not give her heart to any of the 35 suitors and was doing all she can to send them all home however as different incidents transpire at the palace force Eadlyn even further into the public spotlight, she realizes that she may just have to embrace The Selection and to choose a suitor for a husband after all…

All I can say is finally I have closure to a pretty awesome series I have read for awhile, I would like to rate this one 4.5 stars… There were major twists I didn’t see coming towards the end however during the previous book, I did have a theory but then felt it was too far fetched only to realise, I really should have put money on it!!! A fast paced and very enjoyable read.. An ending to a series you would not believe..

Many thanks to Harper Collins Publishers for sending me a copy for a review!!
-Annie

Threader by Rebekah Turner

Action-packed sci-fi YA read with a side of romance – 4.5 stars!

Expected publication: June 2016

Josie is an unregistered talent Threader who must keep her unusual talent hidden from the government. Being a Threader meant that she’s got the rare ability to enhance and manipulate other people’s “talents” (aka special powers); her talent is  powerful and her past is a mystery. Set in the year 2050, in a world filled with robots, emerging “Mars” colonies, non-citizens and people with special genetic abilities; Josie desperately wants to find her place in the world, and through a series of unfortunate events finds herself at Helios Academy, a prestigious corporate facility that trains many of the genetically “talented” people. Will she survive?

I enjoyed the mystery and world building in this book. Most books with good world building tends to be a bit slow and very descriptive, but this book had the perfect pace. Josie’s Threader power is also quite imaginative and fascinating. I also liked the fact that even though Josie is deemed “special”, she still made some wrong, shameful choices. Our protagonist however is nonetheless a courageous character who goes after what she wants and is unafraid to wear her heart on her sleeve. The plot is fast paced and the book can be read in one setting. If you like to escape reality  and like a good plot-driven YA read with a side of romance, you will enjoy Threader. Also, if you’re a fan of Four from the Divergent series, you will absolutely fall for Blake. You have been warned.

Click here to read the book blurb from Goodreads.

– NJ

 

Attachments by Rainbow Rowell

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!!!

-Annie