Saturday, 18 April 2015

Review: The Ruby Circle by Richelle Mead

The Ruby Circle by Richelle MeadThe Ruby Circle by Richelle Mead (review copy) - WARNING! I cannot review this book without spoiling the others in the series. Read no further if you're planning on reading this series and don't want it spoilt for you.

Sydney Sage is an Alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of humans and vampires. They protect vampire secrets—and human lives.

After their secret romance is exposed, Sydney and Adrian find themselves facing the wrath of both the Alchemists and the Moroi in this electrifying conclusion to Richelle Mead’s New York Times bestselling Bloodlines series. When the life of someone they both love is put on the line, Sydney risks everything to hunt down a deadly former nemesis. Meanwhile, Adrian becomes enmeshed in a puzzle that could hold the key to a shocking secret about spirit magic, a secret that could shake the entire Moroi world.
From Goodreads.

Review: A Cat Called Panda by Melanie Arora

A Cat Called Panda by Melanie AroraA Cat Called Panda by Melanie Arora (review copy) - A small girl called Amanda converses with a haughty cat called Panda in this whimsical nonsense-style poem. Inspired by a real cat called Panda, we find out about his slightly superior character, why he is named after another animal and his particular fondness for bamboo. Playing with a ‘black and white’ theme throughout, magpies, cows and zebras all get a mention, with additional animals popping up in unexpected places. Amanda, Panda and friends come to life with the unique hand-printed illustrations that incorporate striking splashes of colour into the black and white palette. From Goodreads.

Thursday, 2 April 2015

Review: Simon Vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

Simon Vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky AlbertalliSimon Vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli (proof) - Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.

With some messy dynamics emerging in his once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon's junior year has suddenly gotten all kinds of complicated. Now, change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met.
From Goodreads

Monday, 30 March 2015

Review: Not Otherwise Specified by Hannah Moskowitz

Not Otherwise Specified by Hannah MoskowitzNot Otherwise Specified by Hannah Moskowitz - tta is tired of dealing with all of the labels and categories that seem so important to everyone else in her small Nebraska hometown.

Everywhere she turns, someone feels she's too fringe for the fringe. Not gay enough for the Dykes, her ex-clique, thanks to a recent relationship with a boy; not tiny and white enough for ballet, her first passion; and not sick enough to look anorexic (partially thanks to recovery). Etta doesn’t fit anywhere— until she meets Bianca, the straight, white, Christian, and seriously sick girl in Etta’s therapy group. Both girls are auditioning for Brentwood, a prestigious New York theater academy that is so not Nebraska. Bianca seems like Etta’s salvation, but how can Etta be saved by a girl who needs saving herself?

The latest powerful, original novel from Hannah Moskowitz is the story about living in and outside communities and stereotypes, and defining your own identity.
From Goodreads.

Review: Me Being Me is Exactly as Insane as You Being You by Todd Hasak-Lowy

Me Being Me is Exactly as Insane as You Being You by Todd Hasak-LowyMe Being Me is Exactly as Insane as You Being You by Todd Hasak-Lowy (ARC) - A heartfelt, humorous story of a teen boy’s impulsive road trip after the shock of his lifetime—told entirely in lists!

Darren hasn't had an easy year.

There was his parents’ divorce, which just so happened to come at the same time his older brother Nate left for college and his longtime best friend moved away. And of course there’s the whole not having a girlfriend thing.

Then one Thursday morning Darren's dad shows up at his house at 6 a.m. with a glazed chocolate doughnut and a revelation that turns Darren’s world inside out. In full freakout mode, Darren, in a totally un-Darren move, ditches school to go visit Nate. Barely twenty-four hours at Nate’s school makes everything much better or much worse—Darren has no idea. It might somehow be both. All he knows for sure is that in addition to trying to figure out why none of his family members are who they used to be, he’s now obsessed with a strangely amazing girl who showed up out of nowhere but then totally disappeared.

Told entirely in lists, Todd Hasak-Lowy's debut YA novel perfectly captures why having anything to do with anyone, including yourself, is:

1. painful
2. unavoidable
3. ridiculously complicated
4. possibly, hopefully the right thing after all.
From Goodreads.

FYI: My review will spoil what Darren's dad reveals to him. We find out about this revelation really early on in the story, so I don't feel it's really that much of a spoiler, and considering it's a focus of the majority of the story, I have no idea how I can review this book without talking about it. If you don't want this spoilt for you, though, do not read any further.