Halloween Reads

There's Someone Inside Your HouseOne-by-one, the students of Osborne High are dying in a series of gruesome murders, each with increasing and grotesque flair. As the terror grows closer and the hunt intensifies for the killer, the dark secrets among them must finally be confronted.

International bestselling author Stephanie Perkins returns with a fresh take on the classic teen slasher story that’s fun, quick-witted, and completely impossible to put down.

 

 

Well, this book was shocking. I spend the first half of this book appreciating it for being good trash — you know, like those terrible horror movies you watch just to laugh at them? — but in the second half I just wanted the killer to win. I wanted everyone to die, including myself if this book didn’t end soon. It was just so, so awful. I can’t sugarcoat how I feel about this book, and I’m sorry. I wanted to enjoy it. I wanted a great horror novel to read during the month of Halloween. But nope. I didn’t find my new favourite scary read in There’s Someone Inside Your House.

I don’t know why I expected anything other than what I was given from Stephanie Perkins — the author of the fluffy trash novels Anna and the French Kiss, Lola and the Boy Next Door, and Isla and the Happily Ever After. I did enjoy those novels. I enjoyed them as much as I would enjoy any other trashy fluff novel that I can read a chapter of before falling asleep. There was nothing particularly stimulating about them, or nothing that made me think about something in a new way. They were just fun books.Read More »

Mini Reviews: The Sci-Fi Edition

Surprisingly, I’ve read a lot of sci-fi books in the past month. Seeing as my most-read genre is contemporary, followed by fantasy, I’d say that reading five sci-fi novels in four weeks is quite impressive. So I’m going to share my thoughts about them with you!

Invictus

Invictus

Farway Gaius McCarthy was born outside of time. The son of a time-traveling Recorder from 2354 AD and a gladiator living in Rome in 95 AD, Far’s birth defies the laws of nature. Exploring history himself is all he’s ever wanted, and after failing his final time-traveling exam, Far takes a position commanding a ship with a crew of his friends as part of a black market operation to steal valuables from the past.

But during a heist on the sinking Titanic, Far meets a mysterious girl who always seems to be one step ahead of him. Armed with knowledge that will bring Far’s very existence into question, she will lead Far and his team on a race through time to discover a frightening truth: History is not as steady as it seems.

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TURTLES ALL THE WAY DOWN – Book Review

Let me get this straight — I’m John Green trash, and I’m not afraid to admit it. The Fault in Our Stars was my favourite book for about two years, so much so that I owned three copies of it and was adamant that I’d get an infinity tattoo once I was old enough. Suffice to say that since then my tastes have changed a little, and I’ve realised that nothing says Basic Bitch like having an infinity tattoo with the word ‘love’ written inside it in cursive script. That’s only second-worst to having the words ‘live, laugh, love’ written on your wrist in indelible ink.

Apologies if you have either tattoo. As long as you’re happy, that’s the main thing.

But because I’m John Green trash, I think it makes it even more acceptable for me to bash his books — in the nicest way possible, of course. Since coming to my senses about The Fault in Our Stars, I’ve realised that all of his books are pretty much slight variations of the same thing: someone who thinks they’re quirky but unmemorable falls for a seemingly unattainable human whose flaws are glamorised, and they both manage to learn some trite lesson about life while also recognising the confronting nature of their own mortality.

It’s been a while since I’ve read John’s other books, but I’m going to recap them all for you anyway. Just incase you haven’t read them, for some miracle.Read More »

Why I Hate Adam Silvera

33385229On September 5, a little after midnight, Death-Cast calls Mateo Torrez and Rufus Emeterio to give them some bad news: They’re going to die today. Mateo and Rufus are total strangers, but, for different reasons, they’re both looking to make a new friend on their End Day.

The good news: There’s an app for that. It’s called the Last Friend, and through it, Rufus and Mateo are about to meet up for one last great adventure and to live a lifetime in a single day.

 

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Okay, so here goes. They Both Die at the End is one of my favourite books of the year, if not one of my all-time favourites. I’m obsessed with everything Adam Silvera writes — and does — so there was never any question as to whether I’d pick up his latest novel. The first book I read by him was History is All You Left Me, which was released earlier this year, and then I proceeded to read More Happy Than Not. Both were phenomenal, to say the least.

I don’t know if this review is going to be able to encapsulate all my thoughts and feelings about They Both Die at the End, simply because I have a lot of them. Plus, I’m struggling to put them into words that accurately describe my emotions. I cried when I first touched a copy of this book, when I read the introduction by Adam Silvera, and all the way through. I was just one great big sobbing mess throughout, and I don’t apologise for that. I do, however, kind of hate Adam Silerva. Me being a blubbering mess and in a book hangover for a month afterwards was all his fault.Read More »

The Obligation to Like Books

The obligation to like books is a very real thing in the blogging community: whether those books be written by authors you know personally, or novels by authors from your home country, or because they’ve been hyped up by other prominent readers in the bookish community. But you shouldn’t have to feel obliged to like a particular book.

If there’s one thing I dislike about the bookish community it’s the idea that if you like a certain book, you’re a terrible person, and if you dislike a certain book, you’re also a terrible person. I understand that there are some books that shouldn’t be supported because of their problematic elements, but it’s also not okay to attack those for what they choose to read or not read — like or dislike.

But one of the most challenging aspects of being a reviewer, for me, is writing a negative review for a book I’ve felt obliged to like. I always try to share my honest opinion, even when I feel judged or like writing my thoughts out on my laptop crushes my soul slowly, but that doesn’t mean writing a “bad” review for a book I disliked has gotten any easier over the few years I’ve been blogging.

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Why GENUINE FRAUD was just… meh.

Genuine FraudThe story of a young woman whose diabolical smarts are her ticket into a charmed life. But how many times can someone reinvent themselves? You be the judge.

Imogen is a runaway heiress, an orphan, a cook, and a cheat.
Jule is a fighter, a social chameleon, and an athlete.
An intense friendship. A disappearance. A murder, or maybe two.
A bad romance, or maybe three.
Blunt objects, disguises, blood, and chocolate. The American dream, superheroes, spies, and villains.
A girl who refuses to give people what they want from her.
A girl who refuses to be the person she once was.

 

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Heroes and Villains

Ahh, heroes and villains… What would books be like without them? As Moriarty said, Every fairytale needs a good old-fashioned villain. And, as Bonnie Tyler said, I need a hero. I’m holding out for a hero ’til the morning light.

The hero, ultimately, is who makes the story. Without one, there’d just be random people bumbling their ways through the apocalypse. The heroes are the ones who make the story what it is. Whether they be defeating a great evil, or giving a stranger an umbrella in the rain, they’re the people we feel for and connect to most of the time. They’re the characters who lead us on a journey, and the best kind of journeys not only provide for a strong character arc, but also change the reader too.

And as much as we all hate the villain of the story, or sometimes we root for them if we hate the protagonist — yes, I’ve wanted the killer to win once or twice — books and movies and shows wouldn’t exist without them. I’ll admit, I was one of those people who cried when Voldemort was killed. I’m not a Death Eater, I swear! It’s just that Voldemort shaped Harry into being who he was, and in turn, he did the same to me. He’s the reason why we know that we can’t let the darkness win and that we have to fight hatred with love. I just really appreciated him as a villain, okay?

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A Chat with Claire Christian

When Claire was down for the Melbourne Writer’s Festival not too long ago, I was lucky enough to catch up with her at a little cafe in the city and have a chat. If you know me at all, there’s nothing I love more than coffee and books – so this was the perfect combination of the two. We went to a cute cafe outside the Melbourne City Library that I’d been meaning to visit for ages, called The Journal Cafe, and it was simply delightful.

I’d only met Claire briefly before at a writing event for the Emerging Writers Festival, and it was brilliant to be able to sit down and just have a chilled conversation, surrounded by the bookish decor and the smell of freshly ground coffee beans. Being the lovely person she is, Claire kindly agreed to answer a few questions for me to share with y’all!

I adored hearing more about how her novel, Beautiful Mess, made it into this world, what she’s working on now, and what influenced the writing of this sensational novel. She’s such a genuine, inspirational person and it was an honour to be able to spend some time with her.

“It’s okay to not be okay.” – Claire Christian, author of BEAUTIFUL MESS

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Writing Advice from a Complete Amateur

Hello friends! As most of you won’t have noticed, my blogging schedule has been pretty much non-existent for the past six weeks. And that’s because I’ve been working on my first drat of a very exciting new manuscript! I’ve managed to almost finish my first draft in this time, and I’m hoping to smash out the final few thousand words in the coming days. It’s been great to become immersed in the world I’m creating and get to know my characters, and I’ve found this time off really useful to get back into that creative mindset and take a step back from blogging for a bit.

But earlier this week, I realised that I actually really missed blogging, and talking to y’all! So today I’m announcing my official return to bi-weekly (and maybe even tri-weekly, if I’m organised) blogging! To celebrate, I’ll be sharing a bit about how and what I’m writing, my writing process, and my advice to all of you! Do keep in mind that I definitely don’t consider myself a writing professional and that the writing process varies for everyone.

Without further ado, let me share my somewhat dubious words of wisdom with y’all!

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The Great Hierarchy of Books & Authors

One of the things that annoys me most about the bookish community, both online and off, is the way that some authors look down upon others. From what I’ve seen and heard, this can happen for a variety of reasons, some of which being the genre or readership for which an author writes, or because of the gender of the writer—most of the time, female writers are looked down upon when writing in certain genres, which is really disappointing to see. But what I want to discuss today is something different. I want to talk about the supposed hierarchy of authors, and why those who self-publish their novels shouldn’t be looked down upon.

It angers me that any author should be looked down upon because of what they write, or how they get published. Whether they have an agent or one of the biggest publishing houses representing them, or whether they chose to self-publish is irrelevant to me, and to most readers. But most of all, I hate the idea that some people have that those who self-publish do so because they ‘wouldn’t have gotten published any other way’ or because it was a ‘last-resort’, due to their writing quality being sub-standard. This isn’t true at all, and if you read Heart of Mist and some of the other awesome self-published novels out there, you’ll come to see just how wrong those people are.

 

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