Wednesday, 23 November 2011

I'll be back...

With NaNoWriMo, homework, the fact that the book review archive is nowhere near up-to-date and the insane amount of posts Google Reader is telling me  I have to read from you,  I'm stopping posting blogging for a little while. Probably a week. I'll carry on reading, answering email and doing little jobs around the site that I have let pile up massively, but there won't be any new posts from me for a little while.
See you all soon x

Monday, 21 November 2011

Book Review- Goliath by Scott Westerfeld

GoliathTitle: Goliath
 Author: Scott Westerfeld (Illustrated by Keith Thompson)
Series:  Leviathan #3
Published:  29 September 2011 by Simon and Schuster 
Length: 543 pages
Warnings: light kissing, violence. 12+
Source: Library
Other info: Scott Westerfeld has written a lot more, such as the Uglies and Midnighters series, as well as the first two in this series called Leviathan and Behemoth.  
Summary : Alek and Deryn are on the last leg of their round-the-world quest to end World War I, reclaim Alek’s throne as prince of Austria, and finally fall in love. The first two objectives are complicated by the fact that their ship, the Leviathan, continues to detour farther away from the heart of the war (and crown). And the love thing would be a lot easier if Alek knew Deryn was a girl. (She has to pose as a boy in order to serve in the British Air Service.) And if they weren’t technically enemies. 
The tension thickens as the Leviathan steams toward New York City with a homicidal lunatic on board: secrets suddenly unravel, characters reappear, and nothing is at it seems in this thunderous conclusion to Scott Westerfeld’s brilliant trilogy
So, it’s the last in the Leviathan series. I loved the other two in the series, Leviathan and Behemoth. I reviewed Leviathan here before, but haven;t written a review of Behemoth yet. Maybe some day. Anyway, I was waiting for this book for ages, even though I knew it would be the end of the series and I’d be sad to see it go. So I was expecting a lot,
We got a lot too. The Leviathan heads to Siberia, where they pick up Tesla, an inventor who says he can end the war. But no one knows whose side he’s on. so no-one knows what to do with him. Then they head on to Japan and America, meaning throughout the series, we’ve gone on a tour of half the countries somehow involved in WWI. In other news, Alek knows that Deryn is female and in love with him. All kinds of things could happen. And so the war and the crown of Austria and his heart all rest on Alek and his actions.
Keith Thompson, as always, has blown me away with his drawings. My favourite one is the double page spread of Steampunk!Japan. it is recognisably Japan, but also recognisably different, if you get my drift. The other ones throughout the book are also amazing...I wonder if you can get prints...
The action comes thick and fast. Something is always happening connected to some element of the main plot or other, and things that you instantly recognise from history/general knowledge that have been given their own steampunk twist just add a little extra something.
I’m still in love with the characters. Deryn has always been the one I preferred between our two main characters, because I love the way she perserveres with everything, is awkward around Alek, and her own brand of profanity is so funny. the Russian guards also made me laugh a lot for some reason...
The romance in this really suits it. It’s not often that I enjoy romance in a book that is clearly action orientated, but in this, I love it. I’d just like to say that I support Dr Barlow x Count Volger so much. I have done since book one, and I am so glad that it is implied heavily (at least I read it that way!) at the end. Alek and Deryn is the main couple for this series, which finally gets closure and completion in the most adorable way possible at the very end.
Overall:  Strength 5 tea to an amazing conclusion to the best steampunk YA series there is. Can’t wait for the Manual of Aeronautics, an art book released next year!

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Book Review- Bad Taste in Boys by Carrie Harris

Bad Taste in BoysTitle: Bad Taste in Boys
 Author: Carrie Harris
Series:  Kate Grable #1
Published:  12 July 2011 by Delacorte Press
Length: 201  pages
Warnings: zombies,romance, 14+(my recommendation)
Source: Won from Reads with Reckless Abandon
Other info: This is Carrie Harris’ debut novel
Summary : Someone’s been a very bad zombie. Super smartie Kate Grable gets to play doctor, helping out her high school football team. Not only will the experience look good on her college apps, she gets to be thisclose to her quarterback crush, Aaron. Then something disturbing happens. Kate finds out the couch has given the team steroids. Except the vials she finds don’t exactly contain steroids. Whatevers in them is turning hot gridiron hunks into mindless flesh eating zombies. Unless she can find an antidote, no-one is safe. Not Aaron, not Kate’s brother, not her best friend, not even Kate.
Review: Kate Grable is the smart girl at her school. As a result, she gets to be medic for her schoolfootball team. And one day, she discovers the team has been given what could be steroids, but after some thought, aren’t. How does she know this? Because one of the team players tries to devour her. Not in the nice romantic way, but literally devour, taking a huge chunk out of her lip. Turns out the steroids are turning the team into zombies. And it is highly infectious. It is up to Kate, love interest Aaron, and various other people to get the virus under control before it’s too late.
First thoughts- awesome premises. Never mind that I didn’t understand a little of the summary(The bit about the quarterback. I am terrible at American terms. And I wish someone would explain them all to me so I don’t spend half my time wondering what it means. Oh well.). The cover, I don’t understand the significance of the sugar lips, even though Carrie spent quite a long time featuring them on her blog. I also found it interesting that neither the title nor the cover hint at all at the zombie element. It does heavily forshadow the romance element though.
Zombie romance I am a little wary of. While it is a rising genre, I believe that the zombie really does belong in the land of terrorising the living instead of falling in love with it (I did a whole post over at Paranormal Wastelands about this). But these zombies also did a fair bit of their terrorising job, so I don’t feel too upset at how the zombies are portrayed I this,
When I actually got this, I was surprised at how short it was. From the summary, I was expecting something a little around 300 pages, as I wouldn’t have thought a book with so many ways you could go with would be closer to 200. But it worked. The small amount of pages requires a huge amount of pace to get anything done in the book, and we got a lot of pace. From the start, something new was happening or being uncovered, which kept the story going.
Kate is obviously a very strong character, from how she deals with the zombies to her clear narration with how she feels and what happened. Some parts made me laugh a lot, possibly because of what was actually happening, and possible because of the way that Kate told it.
Overall:  Strength 4 tea to a good zombie novel that there really should have been more of.
Links: Amazon | Goodreads | Author website |

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Waiting on Wednesday- Sadie Walker is Stranded

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Breaking the Spine where we show off books that we want to read but have not been published yet. 
Title:  Sadie Walker is Stranded
Author:  Madeleine Roux
Release Date: 5 January 2011
Link to / Summary from Goodreads:Sadie Walker fights for survival as the dead close in...In the months since The Outbreak, Seattle has become a walled citadel - the Infected are kept at bay but the city is rife with kidnappings, religious cults and black-market dealings. And things are about to get much, much worse. A group of frustrated religious fanatics, the 'Repopulationists', destroy part of the wall and zombies swarm the city. Devastated by the brutal kidnapping of her nephew, illustrator Sadie Walker flees Seattle with her best friend Andrea and secures passage on a boat with no destination. The ragtag bunch aboard the ship are thrown ashore by a storm and stumble across what appears to be a thriving survivors camp. The shipwrecked group, relived to find food, shelter and friendship, relax into the rhythm of the community's existence. But then people start to disappear.
Why I want it:  I know I've not read Alison Hewett is Trapped, but never mind. Zombies, revolution, religous cults, survival? Fun fun fun indeed.And I love the cover.

What are YOU waiting on this week?