How to Make a Book Launch EPIC

I’ve been to a lot of book launches in the last few years, and from those, I think I’ve picked up on what makes a launch particularly great. One of the things I love most about book launches is feeling completely immersed in the bookish community. I enjoy being present online and talking to authors and other bloggers and readers on Twitter and Instagram, and even here on my blog, but there’s nothing quite like seeing all these people in real life and telling someone how much you adore their novel or their blog in person. I’ve met so many amazing people since I started attending book launches and other bookish events, and I’m so thankful for this welcoming, supportive community.

BOOK NERDS UNITE!

Having been to more book launches than I can count, including two in the past two days, I have some tips and suggestions I’d like to share, as well as things I love about them that can never be changed because I’m allergic to mixing things up. It’d be like releasing the second book in a series before the first. #NotHappening.Read More »

Reading What You Enjoy

‘Read what you enjoy.’ It’s a phrase that we’ve all probably heard before in our lives, and have maybe even said to some people. You might tell someone who has different tastes in books to you to just ‘read what you enjoy’, end of conversation. If someone isn’t feeling the particular book they’re attempting to read, you might suggest putting it down in favour of reading something ‘you enjoy’. But sometimes the most important books are the ones that not everyone will ‘enjoy’. In the typical sense of the word, I ‘enjoy’ books that are easy to read and are a bit exciting and adventurous, but that I can read to escape reality and experience new worlds. Should that mean that I shouldn’t read the more confronting, powerful novels just because they won’t be easy reads or something merely created for entertainment value?

One of the most important questions readers have to ask themselves is this: What is the purpose of reading? Why do you read? Is it to escape your own reality, or to pass the time? Is it to experience things that might not be possible in your own life? Do you like to learn about people who are different to you in a multitude of ways? Or do you read to educate yourself?Read More »

Domestic Violence in YA Fiction | Feat. THE BUILD-UP SEASON

34854006Seventeen-year-old Iliad Piper – Ily for short – is named after war and angry at the world. Growing up with a violent father and abused mother, she doesn’t know how to do relationships, family or friends. Her love-hate friendship with Max turns into a prank war and she nearly destroys her first true friendship with misfit Mia. She takes off her armour for nobody, until she meets Jared, a local actor and someone who’s as complicated as she is.

From the author of Yellow comes a powerful exploration of family and identity set against the humid build-up to the wet season in Darwin.

 

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The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice & Virtue – book review

29283884Henry “Monty” Montague was born and bred to be a gentleman, but he was never one to be tamed. The finest boarding schools in England and the constant disapproval of his father haven’t been able to curb any of his roguish passions—not for gambling halls, late nights spent with a bottle of spirits, or waking up in the arms of women or men.

But as Monty embarks on his Grand Tour of Europe, his quest for a life filled with pleasure and vice is in danger of coming to an end. Not only does his father expect him to take over the family’s estate upon his return, but Monty is also nursing an impossible crush on his best friend and traveling companion, Percy.

Still it isn’t in Monty’s nature to give up. Even with his younger sister, Felicity, in tow, he vows to make this yearlong escapade one last hedonistic hurrah and flirt with Percy from Paris to Rome. But when one of Monty’s reckless decisions turns their trip abroad into a harrowing manhunt that spans across Europe, it calls into question everything he knows, including his relationship with the boy he adores.

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Top 5 Sci-Fi Books

I’m ashamed to admit it, but I never really used to be much of a sci-fi person, at least not when it came to books. I’ve loved Doctor Who for as long as I can remember and I’m a massive Star Trek nerd, but somehow that love of sci-fi never infiltrated my reading habits. The few books that I attempted to pick up that were set in space always seemed to be lacking something, and it was only recently that I found a few sci-fi novels that I actually adore. There are some terrible YA books set in space out there, but there are also some brilliant ones. So today I’d like to share my top five sci-fi novels with you!

1. These Broken Stars

This trilogy was the first series that I actually liked that was set in space. Before that, all I tried to read were cliched novels about love being stronger than gravity or sexy aliens falling in love with humans. Even my younger teenage self — a smaller and more annoying version of my present self — couldn’t have been fooled into thinking that these novels were worthy of my time. But that all changed when I read These Broken Stars and found that there was actually some quality YA sci-fi novels out there. This series wasn’t just enjoyable — it was thrilling and fast-paced and blew me away with how phenomenally-written these different worlds were. I loved how each of the three books were centred around different protagonists and I adored them all equally. You really don’t have to be a sci-fi person to enjoy this series, but you’ll definitely be a sci-fi person afterwards. Read More »

Mini Reviews

Ta da! See, I told you I could do it! Step outside of my comfort zone and try to collate my thoughts about a particular book into less than 400 words. It was a challenge that mostly consisted of incoherent screaming, procrastination snacking, and lying on the ground in the foetal position wondering what the purpose of life is, but I DID IT!

While I love to write long and rambly reviews, they DO take a lot of time, and when I go to seek out reviews personally, I find that I prefer to read shorter ones if possible. I love a good rant, but sometimes all I want is 300 or 400 words telling me why I should pick up a book, or why I should avoid it like the plague.

THANKFULLY, most of the books I’ve read recently have been marvellous! So today, I’d like to share my thoughts on three of my recent reads, and hopefully convince you to pick a couple up and add them to your monstrous TBR. ENJOY!

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Top 10 YA Books About Grief

Recently, I’ve found that a lot of the books I’m reading are united by one common underlying theme — grief. There’s something so raw and powerful about these books that means I can’t help but fall in love with the characters and feel as though I’m experiencing every heartfelt moment right beside them. Grief is a strange thing. It can work its way into every facet of your life, paining each smile and making your heart clench, even when you least expect it. Grief isn’t a thing that can be dealt with lightly, whether it be the grief of losing a family member, or a friend, or someone that meant the world to you. It’s these novels that I find leave a mark on me and find a home inside my heart. They say that books have the power to change you, and the novels I’ve read about grief and loss definitely have.

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1) History is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera

I wasn’t expecting to be as moved by this book as I was. Told from alternating times — History, and Now — this novel revolves around the impact and the lead-up to the death of Griffin’s first love and ex-boyfriend, Theo. Griffin’s grief was so raw and so genuine, and it reduced me to nothing more than a sobbing mess at the end. The writing was exceptional, the characters were vibrant and real, and each sentence was filled with a heartfelt yearning to bring back what was lost.Read More »

The Color Project – book review

Color ProjectBernice Aurora Wescott has one thing she doesn’t want anyone to know: her name. That is, until Bee meets Levi, the local golden boy who runs a charity organization called The Color Project.

Levi is not at all shy about attempting to guess Bee’s real name; his persistence is one of the many reasons why Bee falls for him. But while Levi is everything she never knew she needed, giving up her name would feel like a stamp on forever. And that terrifies her.

When unexpected news of an illness in the family drains Bee’s summer of everything bright, she is pushed to the breaking point. Losing herself in The Color Project—a world of weddings, funerals, cancer patients, and hopeful families that the charity funds—is no longer enough. Bee must hold up the weight of her family, but to do that, she needs Levi. She’ll have to give up her name and let him in completely or lose the best thing that’s ever happened to her.

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Why First Impressions Matter

If there’s one thing I’m ashamed of when it comes to my reading habits, it’s that I make judgements about books quickly, and it’s often hard to change my first impressions of them. If I don’t enjoy the first few chapters, there’s not a great chance that the rest of the book will turn it into a five-star read, no matter how phenomenal or compelling the last two thirds might be. Whether the book be boring or confusing or just lack that special something in the beginning, those impressions linger with me. It’s a little bit different if I absolutely hate the first few chapters, because then I’ll just put the book down. First impressions matter, and here’s why.

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Must-Reads for Every Slytherin

I’m sure I’m not the only person out there who categorises allocates characters from certain books their Hogwarts House. That’s not weird, right? Like Starr from The Hate U Give is clearly Gryffindor, whereas Holland from A Darker Shade of Magic is the epitome of your typical Slytherin. But I also like to categorise books themselves to Hogwarts Houses, depending on their major themes and just my general feeling about the narrative — how it sits with me. I like to think of myself as the Sorting Hat in these instances.

Today, I’d like to share some of my favourite Slytherin reads with all of you! While I first thought I was Gryffindor, and then my visions aligned with Ravenclaw, and now I’m sufficiently evil enough to be placed in Slytherin by Pottermore — find out more about my Hogwarts House journey here — I want to share some of my favourite novels that I’ve sorted into Slytherin. Whether they be dark, filled with characters who are ruthlessly ambitious, or blatantly worship a reincarnation of the devil, these are all books that I think show a bit of Slytherin pride!Read More »