Friday, 31 August 2012

My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century by Rachel Harris Review and Author Spotlight

My Super Sweet Sixteenth CenturyTitle: My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century
Author: Rachel Harris
Genre: Young Adult, Historical Fiction
Publication: September 11 2012, Entangled Teen
Pages: 304 pages, Ebook
Source: Thank you to Shane over at Itching for Books and the lovely author, Rachel Harris, for hosting this blog tour. :)
On the precipice of her sixteenth birthday, the last thing lone wolf Cat Crawford wants is an extravagant gala thrown by her bubbly stepmother and well-meaning father. So even though Cat knows the family’s trip to Florence, Italy, is a peace offering, she embraces the magical city and all it offers. But when her curiosity leads her to an unusual gypsy tent, she exits . . . right into Renaissance Firenze
Thrust into the sixteenth century armed with only a backpack full of contraband future items, Cat joins up with her ancestors, the sweet Alessandra and protective Cipriano, and soon falls for the gorgeous aspiring artist Lorenzo. But when the much-older Niccolo starts sniffing around, Cat realizes that an unwanted birthday party is nothing compared to an unwanted suitor full of creeptastic amore
Can she find her way back to modern times before her Italian adventure turns into an Italian forever?
As a lover of historical fiction, I was extremely excited to sign up for the MSSSC blog tour. I've always loved the thought of travelling back in time and Rachel Harris did a fabulous job of magically transferring us back into the past with her spell-binding story. My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century is one of my favourite books this year. The author created a flawless story that was magically told. I couldn't put it down, and I guarantee if you read it, you won't be able to either.

From the first page you can tell Cat is going to be an instantly loveable heroine. She was a realistic teen who had issues to deal with, yet she didn't consistently whine about how unfair life is, she endured it and made the best of the situation (Bella Swan, take note). I absolutely loved her sense of humour and was doubled-up with laughter thanks to her whimsical sayings. I also loved how the author managed to create such a three-dimensional character. Cat was funny, bubbly and witty and had enough sarcasm that easily wasn't over bearable, yet added a light, playful tone to the story, however, at the same time she had flaws. She was determined not to let anyone into her heart, as she had learnt from her mother that if you follow your heart, it just lets you down and leaves you shattered. I loved gradually learning exactly why she kept a hard layer around her heart and I adored it as slowly her new friends cautiously peeled that tough layer from around it and I smiled as I watched her affection and love radiating toward her Sixteenth-Century family and receiving it back from them. 

The other characters were all described in perfect detail, whereas most authors tend to portray their main focus on the main character, Rachel Harris did an impeccable job of letting the readers befriend the characters in the story. Every character I was introduced to, I eventually learnt their longings, their characteristics, their past and their destiny. I absolutely loved learning about every character and hearing their voice shine through the story. I fell in love with Lorenzo (who hasn't?), I adored Uncle Marco and Aunt Francesca, I wanted to hug little Less and admire Cip.

*Sigh* Lorenzo, oh how swoon-worthy he was. Tousled curly blonde locks, chocolate-brown eyes, an artist...and Italian, who could ask for a better book boyfriend? I loved watching him and Cat interact and how they loved each other. I also enjoyed the way they author didn't use insta-love in her novel but that they fell in love in such a short period of time because Cat couldn't be there forever. I also loved the part in the beginning where Cat was determined not to let Lorenzo in her heart but gradually she fell in love with him, it was stunning to watch.

One of my favourite characters was also Alessandro, or Less, as Cat liked to call her. She made all the scenes bright and cheerful and I loved her mannerisms and characteristics. She was a stunning character that made an already fabulous book a little bit more fantastic. Sweet, cute and enthusiastic she was perfect in every way. I also loved reading about her ambitious feelings towards acting, I loved the scenes where Cat revealed to her a little bit about movie productions in the 21st Century.

The setting that the author depicted was stunning. It literally felt like I was being swept back in time,  especially as we walked with Cat down the cobblestone streets, smelt the delicious smells wafting in from the food stalls, hearing the rustle of the dresses and running barefoot through the poppy fields. The setting was beautifully described and I could picture exactly where Cat was at that particular scene in the story and exactly what she was doing at the precise moment.
After reading MSSSC, I dream of walking the streets of Italy.

The plot, pacing  and writing was phenomenal. It moved smoothly and freely, like an azure river trickling through the Italian countryside. It kept me gripped and I was frequently flicking the pages, not able to absorb enough of the stunning writing and the little twists in the tale. The pacing was perfect, Rachel introduced us to Cat's modern life and then when Cat took a trip back in time she did an excellent job of introducing us to Cat's new lifestyle. 

My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century is a flawless novel that I would recommend to anyone and everyone. Rachel Harris is a stunningly talented new author with an individual voice and a spectacular writing style. Vivid imagery paints wondrous pictures in our head of how times were in the magical Renaissance period, with spellbinding writing and fresh characters that are charming and witty, My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century will stay with you long after you've read the last word. This was a flawless novel that will stay with me forever.

I give it: 5/5 CUPCAKES!

Author Bio (Spotlight)
Rachel  Harris
As a teen, Rachel threw raging parties that shook her parents’ walls and created embarrassing fodder for future YA novels.As an adult, she read and wrote obsessively, rehash said embarrassing fodder, and dreamt up characters who become her imaginary friends. When she's not typing furiously or flipping pages in an enthralling romance, you can find Rachel homeschooling her two beautiful princesses, hanging out with her amazing husband, or taking a hot bubble bath…next to a pile of chocolate. MY SUPER SWEET SIXTEENTH CENTURY is her first novel. She did have her own fantabulous Sweet Sixteen in high school. Sadly, it wasn’t televised.  

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Thursday, 30 August 2012

Ebony Black Lines Giveaway


I just want all of you lovely people to know that my brilliant bloggy buddy, Jasmine, from Ebony Black Lines, is hosting a fabtabulous giveaway! :) Here is the link:

You guys must all enter as it would be a lovely gift to win! So what are you waiting for? Head on over! :) xxx
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From the Review Pile #8

This is a meme I participate in called From the Review Pile, hosted by Stepping Out of the Page. Basically it is a meme, where you pick one book (or two!) that you have been meaning to read/review for a while, but haven't yet gotten around to it. It will also give the book some extra publicity. :)   
This week I am showcasing Dante's Girl by Courtney Cole! Oh. My. Gosh. I was lying in bed last night and decided to just turn my phone on quick to see if I got any more emails...yes, yes I did. Netgalley had accepted my request to read Dante's Girl. I was like this:
baby gets excited over dog
Seriously, that's how excited I was. I might bump this up to the top of my review pile...>.<

Dante's Girl by Courtney Cole 
Dante's Girl
I have spent every summer since I was ten years old with my father in London. Every summer, since I was ten years old, has been uneventful and boring. Until this year. 
And this year, after a freak volcanic eruption strands me far from home, I have learned these things:
1. I can make do with one outfit for three days before I buy new clothes. 2. If I hear the phrase, “You’re not in Kansas anymore, Toto,” even one more time, I might become a homicidal maniac.3. I am horribly and embarrassingly allergic to jellyfish.4. I am in love with Dante Giliberti, who just happens to be the beautiful, sophisticated son of the Prime Minister of a Mediterranean paradise. 5. See number four above. Because it brings with it a whole slew of problems and I’ve learned something from every one of them.
Let’s start with the fact that Dante’s world is five light-years away from mine. He goes to black-tie functions and knows the Prime Minister of England on a first name basis. I was born and raised on a farm in Kansas and wear cut-off jeans paired with cowboy boots. See the difference? 
But hearts don’t care about differences. Hearts want what they want. And mine just wants to be Dante’s girl. 
My heart just might be crazy.
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Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Review - Fever - Dee Shulman

FeverTitle: Fever
Author: Dee Shulman
Genre: Young Adult, Time-Travel
Publication: April 5 2012, Puffin
Pages: 400 pages, Paperback
Source: Thank you so much to Penguin Books South Africa for giving me Fever in exchange for a honest review! :)
A fearless Roman gladiator. A reckless 21st century girl. A mysterious virus unites them . . .
152 AD. Sethos Leontis, a skilled and mesmerising fighter, is unexpectedly wounded and lies dangerously close to death.
2012 AD. Eva is brilliant - but troubled. Starting her new life at a school for the gifted, a single moment in the lab has terrifying results.
An extraordinary link brings Sethos and Eva together, but it could force them apart - because the fever that grips them cannot be cured and falling in love could be lethal . . . Can love survive when worlds collide and threaten time itself?
Fever had a really interesting concept. Time-travelling by having fever, some how reincarnating to a different a person living in a different century and loving someone who is lethal to your health. It was a good story yet there were a few distractions that had my attention elsewhere.

First off, I LOVE the cover. The way they are holding hands shows how they are united by this curious virus that threatens their life. I also love how the electric sphere surrounding their hands looks  scientific and a lot of the content in Fever is based on scientific fact. It's a bright, sparkly cover that is well suited to the story within.

The story gripped my attention in the beginning and most of the way throughout the rest of the book. There were quite a few parts that had me skimming the pages and didn't hold my interest. The pacing was quite slow at times but picked up in other parts during the story. I felt that sometimes the story went into detail without actually letting the reader know exactly what was going on, so I was reading all this detail yet the author wasn't quite explaining what I needed to know. It felt like while there was detail in the book, we were skimming over it, not delving into it like we were suppose to.


I also don't think the pacing was laid out satisfyingly enough. A lot of the events in Fever seemed monotonous and the romance between Eva and Seth developed a bit too quickly, but then again it didn't because Eva was somehow Livia, so her and Seth did actually know and love each other. I was also quite perplexed with Eva being Lydia in her past life and the author didn't explain  as to why this had occurred. 

The plot was interesting, it flowed nicely and there was a decent amount of surprises scattered throughout the book. Like I said in the previous paragraph, some of the events were monotonous, such as Eva being admitted to hospital every couple of chapters and Seth running and researching every day. It was an addictive read and I did find myself unable to put it down. :)

I really liked Eva. A lot of people have stated that they thought Eva was too perfect. I didn't think so! I have known people who are like Eva, gorgeous, talented and smart. There are people who are close to perfect but everyone has flaws. Eva had a devastating illness that she kept failing to recover from and she almost died, I'd rather be super healthy than gorgeous, talented and smart - wouldn't you? :) I also enjoyed Eva's chapters more than Seth's. She had more going on in her life and was a more interesting character than Seth, I thought. I also loved how Eva loved science, I'm a lover-of-science-geek myself! :)

Seth was a Roman gladiator, and it was really a wake-up call seeing how they used to suffer and be treated like slaves. When he lost Lydia I was crying along with Seth and you could really see the way her death changed him, you could feel the turmoil, anger and over-whelming sadness crashing down on him.

Fever was a satisfying read that I could not put down. A new take on time-travelling that will leave you stunned as well as having a million and one questions flitting through your head. It was an interesting time-travel novel with sweet romance, however the pacing was a bit temperamental at times and I feel that the a lot of the questions were left unanswered and I was quite a bit confuzzled at times. A scientific read that will make you think about the thought of time-travelling. I look forward to the next book in the trilogy. 

I give it: 3 CUPCAKES! 

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Sunday, 26 August 2012

Stacking the Shelves #14

 This meme is hosted by Tynga's Reviews.
I went to the library this week and got some wish list books *happy dance* and a couple of galleys :) Leave me a link and I'll stop by! :)

Library books:
1. Lucky - Rachel Vail
Lucky (Avery Sisters Trilogy, #1)
It's all good . . . and lucky Phoebe Avery plans to celebrate by throwing an end-of-the-year bash with her four closest friends. Everything will be perfect—from the guest list to the fashion photographer to the engraved invitations. The only thing left to do is find the perfect dress . . . until Phoebe goes from having it all to hiding all she's lost.
Phoebe's older sisters warn her to keep the family's crisis totally secret. Unfortunately, her alpha-girl best friend looks increasingly suspicious, and Phoebe's crush starts sending seriously mixed signals. Phoebe tries hard to keep smiling, but when her mother is humiliated in Neiman Marcus while buying Phoebe that perfect dress and her father decides to cancel her party, she panics. How far will she go to keep up her image as a lucky girl?
2. Tommy Sullivan Is A Freak - Meg Cabot
Tommy Sullivan is a Freak
Liar, liar.Katie Ellison is not a liar.It's just that telling the truth is so . . . tricky. She knows she shouldn't be making out with a drama club hottie behind her football- player boyfriend's back. She should probably admit that she can't stand eating quahogs (clams), especially since she's running for Quahog Princess in her hometown's annual Quahog Festival. And it would be a relief to finally tell someone what really happened the night Tommy Sullivan is a freak was spray-painted on the new wall outside the junior high school gymnasium-in neon orange, which still hasn't been sandblasted off. After all, everyone knows that's what drove Tommy out of town four years ago. But now Tommy Sullivan has come back. Katie is sure he's out for revenge, and she'll do anything to hang on to her perfect (if slightly dishonest) existence. Even if it means telling more lies than ever. Even if, now that Tommy's around, she's actually-no lie- having the time of her life.
3. Need - Carrie Jones
Need (Need, #1)
Zara White suspects there's a freaky guy semi-stalking her. She's also obsessed with phobias. And it's true, she hasn't exactly been herself since her stepfather died. But exiling her to shivery Maine to live with her grandmother? That seems a bit extreme. The move is supposed to help her stay sane...but Zara's pretty sure her mom just can't deal with her right now.
She couldn't be more wrong. Turns out the semi-stalker is not a figment of Zara's overactive imagination. In fact, he's still following her, leaving behind an eerie trail of gold dust. There's something not right - not human - in this sleepy Maine town, and all signs point to Zara.
In this creepy, compelling breakout novel, Carrie Jones delivers romance, suspense, and a creature you never thought you'd have to fear.
4. Lula does the Hula - Planning on buying the first one this week! :)
Aloha! I'm Talullah Bird - or Tatty, or Lu. But mostly people call me Lula. So, my big news is...I've finally been kissed. Eeeee! I have an actual, factual boyfriend! At least, I thought I did. But things with the perfect boy aren't going to plan - thanks to his journo gal pal, Evil Jazz. And that's not all. Hoooo no. In a few days I've got to dance the hula in public, put a stop to some seriously serious criminal activity, win a race, and stop Dad from shaming me totally with his weirdiness. Frikkly frik! Where is my normal life? Huh? Where? Please, someone, tell me I'm not jinxed forever...Laugh-out-loud funny and gorgeously romantic, Lula Does the Hula is the perfect summer read.
5. Wicked Lovely - Melissa Marr
Wicked Lovely (Wicked Lovely, #1)
Rule #3: Don't stare at invisible faeries.Aislinn has always seen faeries. Powerful and dangerous, they walk hidden in the mortal world. Aislinn fears their cruelty - especially if they learn of her Sight - and wishes she were as blind to their presence as other teens.Rule #2: Don't speak to invisible faeries.Now faeries are stalking her. One of them, Keenan, who is equal parts terrifying and alluring, is trying to talk to her, asking questions Aislinn is afraid to answer.Rule #1: Don't ever attract their attention.But it's too late. Keenan is the Summer King, who has sought his queen for nine centuries. Without her, summer itself will perish. He is determined that Aislinn will become the Summer Queen at any cost — regardless of her plans or desires. Suddenly none of the rules that have kept Aislinn safe are working anymore, and everything is on the line: her freedom; her best friend, Seth; her life; everything.Faery intrigue, mortal love, and the clash of ancient rules and modern expectations swirl together in Melissa Marr's stunning twnety-first-century faery tale.
6. 13 Little Blue Envelopes - Maureen Johnson
13 Little Blue Envelopes (Little Blue Envelope, #1)
From the acclaimed author of "The Key to the Golden Firebird." When Ginny receives 13 little blue envelopes with instructions to buy a plane ticket to London, she's soon on an adventure that will change her in more ways than one.
7. Nobody's Girl - Sarra Manning
Nobody's Girl
Bea thinks she's the most boring seventeen-year-old in the world. She's not pretty or popular or funny, unlike her mother who had Bea when she was 17. The only glamorous thing about Bea is the French father who left before she was born and lives in Paris. She yearns for la vie Parisienne every moment of her dull existence. So when Ruby Davies, the leader of her school's most elite clique picks Bea as her new best friend and asks her to go on holiday with them, she's wary but delighted. If nothing else it's two weeks away from her over-protective mother . But when the gang arrive in Spain, Bea is crushed to realise that Ruby and her posse have simply been using her. Bea wreaks vengeance on her so-called friends, and plans to decamp to Paris to find her father. But when she falls asleep on the train and wakes up in Bilbao, she meets a group of American students who are backpacking around Europe and bonds with them straight away, especially the gorgeous Toph, who helps heal Bea's hurting heart. And though Bea has a shock in store when they finally get to Paris, the 'City of Lovers ' really works it magic on Bea and Toph, who spend a week wandering the sun-dappled streets of Paris, talking, holding hands and falling in love. When it comes time to go home to confront her Mum about her mysterious father, the new version of Bea is determined that she 'll never go back to her old, boring way of life - she's no longer Nobody's Girl; she belongs to herself and to Toph...But with an ocean between them, will he wait for her?
For Review:
1. Girl Unmoored - Jennier Gooch Hummer
Girl Unmoored
Apron Bramhall has come unmoored. It’s 1985 and her mom has passed away, her evil stepmother is pregnant, and her best friend has traded her in for a newer model. Fortunately, she’s about to be saved by Jesus. Not that Jesus—the actor who plays him in Jesus Christ, Superstar. Apron is desperate to avoid the look-alike Mike (no one should look that much like Jesus unless they can perform a miracle or two), but suddenly he’s everywhere. Until one day, she’s stuck in church with him—of all places. And then something happens; Apron’s broken teenage heart blinks on for the first time since she’s been adrift. 
Mike and his grumpy boyfriend, Chad, offer her a summer job in their flower store and Apron’s world seems to calm. But when she uncovers Chad’s secret, coming of age becomes almost too much bear. She’s forced to see things the adults around her fail to—like what love really means and who is paying too much for it.
2. The Secret Underground - Natalie Bahm
The Secret Underground
 Twelve-year-old Ally is the only witness to a bank robbery in her small town. Unable to block out the memory of the robbers, a notorious gang known as the Gauze Men, Ally joins her little brother and a bunch of neighborhood boys digging a hole in her backyard.
Only the hole isn't just a hole - it's a massive set of tunnels snaking beneath the neighborhood and heading for an abandoned steel mill. Ally is old enough to know the danger, but she reasons spending time with sixth-grade heartthrob Paul is more fun than sitting at home with her worries. And dangerous it is - none of the kids' parents realize the tunnels exist, but the Gauze Men might.
100% of proceeds from this book will be donated to help a baby boy named Jayden, and contribute toward his family's massive medical expenses. Jayden suffers from a combination of congenital problems including Hirschsprung's disease.
3. Petronella & The Trogot - Cheryl Bentley
Petronella & The Trogot
Petronella moves to a cottage in a seemingly ideal village. But she soon comes into contact with its weird inhabitants, a tree-monster that appears in her garden, gets spooky night-time visits from a hooded horseman, and finds a boy-ghost in her house. How do creepy ghosts and scary monsters fit in with the invasion of spirits all over Fort Willow?

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Friday, 24 August 2012

Viper's Creed Cover Reveal

Viper's Creed Cover Reveal
Title: Viper's Creed
Author: T.L. Shreffler
Release date: October 31st 2012
Sora is having visions. Strange, terrifying visions brought on by her Cat's Eye necklace, an ancient and magical device. Spurred to action, she leaves her mother's cabin to find Crash, the mysterious assassin who once changed her life. She is certain that together, they can discover what the necklace is trying to tell her.
Crash is still on the run from the dark sorcerer, Volcrian, but now a plague is spreading across the land. Volcrian's quest for vengeance has awakened something far more evil than himself; a force that could destroy the entire kingdom. Together, he and Sora must harness the power of the Cat's Eye and kill the sorcerer before it's too late....
How absolutely gorgeous is this cover?! It just screams adventure, danger, romance...the best things you can find in a book! :) My review will be coming up for Viper's Creed and Sora's Quest in the month of October. :)

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Thursday, 23 August 2012

Review - I was Jane Austen's Best Friend - Cora Harrison

I was Jane Austen's Best FriendTitle: I Was Jane Austen's Best Friend
Author: Cora Harrison
Genre: Youg Adult, Historical Fiction
Publication: MacMillan, September 28th 2010
Pages: 320, Hardcover
Source: My Own
When shy Jenny Cooper goes to stay with her cousin Jane Austen she knows nothing of the world of beautiful dresses, dances, secrets, gossip and romance that Jane inhabits. But Jane is already a sharp observer of the customs of courtship, and when Jenny falls utterly in love with the dashing Captain Thomas Williams, who better than Jane to help her win the heart of this most eligible of men?
*Mild spoilers*
Some of you may know that I tried reading Emma by Jane Austen last week. I really wanted to enjoy such classic masterpiece however, I read a couple of chapters  (Emma was such a fun, sweet character!) but I just couldn't get into the writing, I think maybe when I'm a bit older and in the right mood for a classic then I'll read it. :) 

So I was browsing my shelves, looking for something that was modern but had a classic air to it and found this spin-off novel of Jane Austen, sitting neatly there in the corner, so I thought why not. Well, I'm so happy I decided to read it! I really wasn't expecting such a fantastic tale! This was such a sweet, fun, heart-warming read which also dealt with real-life issues and situations. The plot, the characters, the setting, the diary format - it all added up to a spellbinding novel.

The plot was <3 stunning, right from the very first page I knew it was going to be a whirlwind of a ride,with glitzy ball gowns, feisty characters, dramatic twists and - of course - swoonworthy romance! The opening of the book is where Jenny Cooper (Jane's cousin) is sending Jane her diary that she wrote in, the year she went to stay by Jane. Already from the gripping sentence Cora Harrison uses, we are captivated in their lives. How is this for a killer first sentence:
"Jane looks like she could die. It's a terrible thing to write: Jane looks like she could die - but its even worse to have the thought jumping into your mind every few minutes."
It just made me want to continue reading, worrying thoughts were cast through my head just from that first sentence and I wanted to know what happened. The story takes off from there, what Jenny decides to do at that moment sets of a whole train of events, I was fascinated and gripping the edge of my chair as I watched their lives progress. There were some major twists and turns that had my emotions sky-high, some parts I was laughing as I watched Jane and Jenny's friendship and how Jenny was learning to be around so many boys, how to dance at balls and how to ride a donkey. There were also some surprising tear-jerkers that left me dabbing my eyes.

Jenny was a brilliant heroine! She was shy, graceful, a talented artist and very kind - you would expect her to be a bit overly-sensitive and a weak character, but time after time she kept proving what a determined and compassionate girl she was. What she did on that night where Jane could've died, just showed her courage and compassion for the people she loved. She went to a deliver the life-saving letter to the post office in a little village, where not even a man without a sword would venture - just to save her best friend's life, a good thing did come out of it though - that's where she met the gorgeous Captain Thomas Williams, who rescued her from the drunken sailors, she also knew, however, that if anyone saw her with him, her reputation would be forever ruined.

I also can't finish this review without mentioning a very special person...yup...Jane Austen. I loved how Cora Harrison portrayed Jane as a teenager, she was feisty, witty and lived life to the fullest. I loved reading about her, all the risks she took and all the amusing things she said and did. I loved watching her and Jenny's friendship, they were two completely different characters but they were so close, I just couldn't imagine the one without the other. 

Last but not least...the romance. Watching Jenny and Thomas's relationship unfold was so sweet. Cora Harrison captured the innocence and gentleness of first love spot on. Thomas was such a gentleman to her and so caring and I couldn't help swoon over him. He was the perfect guy for Jenny. Jenny was very cautious and shy being around him but he captured her heart and it was a happy ever after. Don't freak when I tell you this...but there was a bit of insta-love. Three weeks. But ya know what? It was true. Cora Harrison put a lot of accurate information in this book and Jenny and Thomas's love lasted for three weeks exactly before something big happened. A good thing, not a bad thing.

It was also interesting (as Jane had five brothers and one sister) to read about all of them. James was an uptight guy and I really didn't like him, he considered Jane and Jenny as foolish little girls and they weren't like that at all. Edward, I warmed up to him. At first I thought  he was going to be like James, but he showed his sweet, sensitive side and he won me over. Henry was a complete and utter flirt, he was hilarious to read about and he really made me laugh. Although I did have butterflies in my stomach when him and Jenny interacted, I just knew he wasn't the right man for sweet Jenny. Frank and Charles were really cute. My heart felt for Frank at times as he was continuously being teased by Henry and when he started falling for Jenny and she was falling for Thomas and he was left jealous and sad when Jenny didn't choose him. 

The only little blip I had with this, is that I felt there were sometimes too many minor characters to keep track of. I would be getting myself confused with who was who in the zoo, but I eventually I found my footing and all was well.

Overall, this was a beautiful, enthralling novel. A modern classic that will stay with you forever. The author captures the beauty of friendship, dancing with the man of you dreams...and first and true love. I Was Jane Austen's Best Friend is one of my favorites that I will now treasure for as long as I live. An addictive page turner, Cora Harrison is now one of my favourite authors. 

I give it: 5/5 CUPCAKES!

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Tuesday, 21 August 2012

The Young Adult Book Lovers Association

Okay, you know how most book bloggers are addicted to Goodreads? Well, I'm one of them. I also love book clubs. So I combined those two of my favourite things and *drumroll please ;)*
The Young Adult Book Lovers Association was born. I created it sometime in July but didn't give it much thought, but now I'm super excited to get it officially up and running. I would love it if you guys would become members, I'd really appreciate it! :)

I think we will start reading books from next month as it's almost the end of the month, so we might as well start in September, which is only 10 days away. (Wow, time has flow)

Also, here are some choices of books we can read next month:
Over You Fracture (Fracture, #1)Wither (The Chemical Garden, #1)GlowInsurgent (Divergent, #2)Star Girl (Stargirl #1)

Of course, you can vote if there is another book you would prefer to read. :) On the TYABLA there is a poll and you can vote which two books we should read for September.

Thank you !:)
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Review - Faith and the Camp Snob -Jen Jones

Title: Faith and the Camp Snob
Author: Jen Jones
Genre: Juvenile Fiction
Publication: August 1st 2011
Pages: 99, ebook
Source: Thank you to Netgalley and the publishers for providing me with this book to review. :)
Faith, the new girl, knows she's not the typical cheerleader. She's lanky, shy, and avoids the spotlight. When she goes to cheer camp, her snobby teammate stops at nothing to embarrass her. To shine on her new squad, Faith will have to learn to lean on her friends and believe in herself.   
*Yesterday I received a finished copy of this and its a totally gorgeous book! So much pink <3!"*

Faith and the Camp Snob is about Faith who moves to a new neighbourhood and quickly befriends three other girls. Gaby and Faith's mom then persuades Faith to try out for the cheer leading, Faith doesn't really want to as she thinks she isn't proper cheer leader material but YAY! She makes the team! When Faith and the other cheer leaders go to a cheer leading camp, Faith is nervous yet excited. However when the camp snob, Ella, wrecks Faith's confidence with an ugly game of Truth and Dare, will Faith go home or will she come out on top?

This was a cute book that will appeal to younger, middle-grade readers. It was a quick, easy book to read. The format of the book was approachable and I loved reading the little lists and notes at the bottom that explained the cheer leading moves, as I know nothing about cheer leading, except the things they wave about are called pom poms. 

The plot was very basic for a middle grade novel, as I have read some MGs with fantastic, in-depth plots, it was very predictable, but I think for the age group it's aimed at they will enjoy it. The ending was slightly unrealistic, I would love it *SPOILER ALERT* if the mean girls I've known in my life apologised to me, but hey? It's a happy ending that will make people smile. :)

Faith was a likeable, realistic character. I was exactly the same when I was about nine or ten. She was shy and didn't like being the centre of attention, yet when she got to know people she was a bubbly and happy girl. I felt very sympathetic towards her when Ella was being horrible to her. I thought it was a bit over dramatic when Faith ran out crying when *SPOILER ALERT*    all Ella had said was daring her to lead a dance in the hall, but when you're incredibly shy (like me) you can't imagine anything worse.

Ella was your typical mean girl that is always thrown into the chick-lit, middle-grade genre. I wish that the author had just given a bit of reason as to why Ella was a bit of a bully, but unfortunately she didn't so I couldn't sympathise for her. I warmed up to her in the end when she was sweet to Faith though.

Faith and the Camp Snobs was a cute middle-grade novel. I think it will be enjoyable to girls of about 8-11. It teaches good lessons like having good friends, doing what you love and not letting someone block your way to success. I really enjoyed this and I'm sure girls my age and younger would love it too! :)

I give it: 4/5 CUPCAKES!

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