In the past three weeks, I’ve been lucky enough to attend three incredible #LoveOzYA book launches. I’ve eaten cake, caught up with some of the most passionate bookish Melbournians, and had the chance to get my books signed and chat with these amazing authors. So today I’d like to share some photos and videos from these launches, as well as mini reviews of the novels that were launched!
White Night was one of my most anticipated #LoveOzYA reads of this year, and it certainly didn’t let me down. I mean… CULTS. HOW EXCITING! I’ve been DYING to pick up a book about cults for ages (and yes, I’ve had Lili Wilkinson’s The Boundless Sublime on my TBR for, like, two years) and so I was incredibly excited to see how White Night would play out. And I certainly wasn’t disappointed. White Night was an intriguing book that showed you the alluring side of cults and how and why these types of groups exist.
One of the things I was most surprised by was finding out that Ellie herself used to be in a cult. While this isn’t something I’ve experienced, I felt that the way in which she wrote about the cult was incredibly well done. But not just that — she explored the ways in which cults sell themselves and what makes people join them. The cult in this book wasn’t some group of people that did witchcraft or went on murder sprees. A lot of what they did made sense and sounded like something we could all be pulled into, and that’s what was scary about it. It was just so fascinating to see the realities of how cults recruit members, instead of the way in which the media portrays cults.
I also adored the setting. Although the story starts off rather slow, it’s very atmospheric and wraps you up in the small town setting. I just loved it. It was also great to see the presence of adults in this novel, which is also lacking from so much of YA. But ultimately, what made me fall in love with this book was Bo and Rory. BO WAS SUCH A SWEETHEART. Let me hug you, you adorable munchkin. He was just so WHOLESOME. And then Rory… I just can’t. Ellie is such an incredible writer who will make you unable to put down her latest release. Make sure you grab a copy ASAP!
MY HEART. SOMEONE HOLD ME. When I fell in love with Shivaun’s debut novel, Frankie, I honestly didn’t think she’d be able to top that incredible novel. I mean, how can you be better than perfection? But because it’s Shivaun, SHE FOUND A WAY. Tin Heart worked its way into my heart and has easily become one of my favourite novels of 2018 so far. The characters were vibrant and realistic, the banter was iconic, and the story itself was just one that made me keep on reading. Every line was perfect.
I don’t even know what to pinpoint because I adored every single aspect of this novel. I loved the realistic family relationships, the growing friendships with the characters (even the ones that had rocky beginnings), as well as the subject matter of organ transplantation, which I haven’t read many stories about before. I think my favourite character in this novel would have to have been Pip, who was just an absolute sweetheart. I WILL PROTECT PIP UNTIL THE DAY I DIE.
This book was honestly just a fun read. The jokes about veganism were ON POINT (and this is coming from a fellow vegan), I loved the banter between the characters and their senses of humour, and Marlowe just oozed wit and sarcasm. I’m just completely in love with Shivaun and her writing, and if you haven’t picked up either Tin Heart or Frankie, you’re really in for a treat.
WOW. I know I said this about the previous two books in the Illuminae series, but Obsidio was INCREDIBLE. Like, MIND-BLOWINGLY, JAW-DROPPINGLY AMAZING. I’m shook. I decided to reread Illuminae and Gemina before picking up Obsidio (well actually, I listened to them), and I’m so pleased I decided to binge this series. The Illuminae Files is the type of series that begs you to binge-read it. Both Illuminae and Gemina leave you wanting more, and if you’ve been eager to get your hands on Obsidio since it was announced, there’s no doubt you’ll just devour this book.
I just… have so many emotions. I can’t even. And yes, most of them are to do with AIDAN. MY BEAUTIFUL, MURDEROUS ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE. If you told me before reading Illuminae that I’d have more feelings about a computer than a lot of the people in real life, I wouldn’t have believed you. BUT I WILL PROTEC AIDAN AT ALL COSTS. I also feel that listening to the audiobook and “hearing” AIDAN made me love him even more. I read his parts in Obsidio in his “voice”, and it just ruined me. I SOBBED THREE TIMES IN THIS NOVEL BECAUSE OF A DAMN COMPUTER. I’d let AIDAN kill me, any day.
It was also really great to see all my favourites back in this novel! Ezra, Kady, Ella, Nik, Hanna, ALL OF THEM. Even the analyser of the footage taken, let’s be real. I just feel as though I knew all these character so well, and I loved spending more time with them. And of course, another thing I loved about Obsidio was how uniquely formatted it was, just like the previous two in the series. But WOW, I thought Jay and Amie had pulled all the shots already. THIS BOOK IS A WORK OF ART, AND IT DESERVES TO BE DISPLAYED IN THE LOURVE. I was so pleased to see Marie Lu’s drawings make a reappearance.
If you haven’t picked up this series yet, please do so! Even if you don’t think you’re a fan of sci-fi, this book might just change your mind. It’s action-packed and gripping, and it has an incredible ability to simultaneously make you love and hate Amie and Jay. THE AUDIOBOOKS ARE PHENOMENAL FYI. Please check this series out!
Have you had the chance to read any of these three amazing novels? Do you attend many book events? Are there any upcoming launched you’re excited to attend? I’d love to know!
Thanks to Allen & Unwin and Penguin Australia for providing me with copies of these books in exchange for an honest review!