Monday, April 30, 2012 20:39

Review 26. Adam Gidwitz – A tale dark and Grimm.

A Tale Dark and GrimmTitle: A tale dark and Grimm.
Author: Adam Gidwitz.
Pages: 252.
Published: November 11th 2010.
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile.
Serie: part one of ‘A tale dark and Grimm.’

In this mischievous and utterly original debut, Hansel and Gretel walk out of their own story and into eight other classic Grimm-inspired tales. As readers follow the siblings through a forest brimming with menacing foes, they learn the true story behind (and beyond) the bread crumbs, edible houses, and outwitted witches. Fairy tales have never been more irreverent or subversive as Hansel and Gretel learn to take charge of their destinies and become the clever architects of their own happily ever after.

Rating

I absolute adore and love this book. It was so good and well written. Before I knew it, I finished it and I only wanted to read more. This is the story of Hansel and Gretel. Not the story we always get told, no, this is 'the real story'.

The king dies and his son becomes the new King. He gets advise from Johannes. Everybody trusts this man and he’s been alive for a very long time. After seeing the portrait of a beautiful, but sad woman, the boy wants to find her and marry her. She will make the perfect queen. Johannes warns him, because there is one big problem. The woman has been married to a lot of men, but they always die soon after the wedding. The boy is crazy in love and doesn’t listen to the advise, so they go on their journey.



During the travel, Johannes hears the conversation of three birds. They tell him a story about the king. There will be three situations where the King will die, unless someone takes care of it. If the king will live after those attempts, he will be save and the curse will be lifted. He can't tell anyone about it, otherwise he will turn to stone.


Johannes is such a loyal man, that he takes care of it. The king marries the girl, but they see Johannes as some kind of traitor. Johannes is scented to death, so he tells them everything and he turns into stone. The king feels so bad about it; he's full of grieve. One day, he is told that there's a way to return Johannes. He must cut of the heads of his two children, Hansel and Gretel, and he must smudge the blood on Johannes statue. The king obeys and Johannes, Hansel and Gretel comes back to live.


The two children are shocked; what kind of father and mother would sacrifice their children like that? They run away. After that, they get into a lot of trouble, but they always find a way to survive it. In the end, they return to their house and it's a happy ending. You must find out for yourself what adventures they find during their wandering. I thought the story was clever told and I liked that you get to now so many different things about Hansel and Gretel. It's not just the regular story (with the witch), but there's so much more. I loved everything about it. Hansel and Gretel are very nice characters.

If you want an original retelling of a not-so-popular fairytale? Than this is the one! And the second book comes out in September :) I’m looking forward to it!

Friday, April 27, 2012 16:55

Award 2.


Two days ago I received my second award! I got this one from Reviewing what I'm reading. I've no idea what this award means, haha, but I'm still going to post it, since I have a little thing I must do. I must tell 7 random things about myself and I thought it should be fun for you guys :)

1. I have a boyfriend for almost 3.5 years now. We met on school. He is my first boyfriend ever and I believe he will be the last one. He makes me very happy :)

2. I have no confidence at all and I'm really shy. When I meet new people, I won't say a word until I get to know them better. Sometimes, people think I'm too arrogant to talk, but I just don't know how to act. I'm also terrible in talking in front of a crowd. That's a real horror for me.

3. I'm afraid for ladybugs. I know, I know.. But I hate the sound they make when they fly.

4. I love watching movies & television shows and playing games.

5. I love jewels. The stranger, the better. I like long necklaces and double loop rings.


6. So, I want to tell you some things about my school. I don't know if you would call my study like this, but I can't find the right translation.. I believe it would be Biology and medical laboratory research. I'm loving it! We started our fourth period today and we are going to study cells and human/animal tissue under the microscope. And we are going to talk about gen technology :) So far, I have collected all the points! I'm doing really well.

7. I have several notebooks scattered around my room. I write down everything about books. I have a list with books I really want to buy, with books I'm waiting for, I write down all the quotes I love etc. I'm a real list addict :p I sometimes even make a list about stuff I still need to do, even if it's just something like: polish my nails. Oh yeah, that's also an addiction! I believe I have all the colors of the rainbow, haha.

8. I hate uneven numbers, so I just add this one to the list. I'm a HUGE, huge fan of Disney. Like you already know, I love fairytales and retellings. Beauty and the beast is my favorite. I can watch that movie 24 hours a day. Belle is such an amazing character.

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Thursday, April 26, 2012 17:56

Review 25. Rachel Hartman – Seraphina.

SeraphinaTitle: Seraphina.
Author: Rachel Hartman.
Pages: 464.
Expected publication: July 10th 2012.
Publisher: Random House Children's Books.
Sort: Stand alone.
Source: NetGalley.
Four decades of peace have done little to ease the mistrust between humans and dragons in the kingdom of Goredd. Folding themselves into human shape, dragons attend court as ambassadors, and lend their rational, mathematical minds to universities as scholars and teachers. As the treaty's anniversary draws near, however, tensions are high. Seraphina Dombegh has reason to fear both sides. An unusually gifted musician, she joins the court just as a member of the royal family is murdered—in suspiciously draconian fashion. Seraphina is drawn into the investigation, partnering with the captain of the Queen's Guard, the dangerously perceptive Prince Lucian Kiggs. While they begin to uncover hints of a sinister plot to destroy the peace, Seraphina struggles to protect her own secret, the secret behind her musical gift, one so terrible that its discovery could mean her very life.
Rating: 

I really tried to love this one. The synopsis sounds great and I've read some positive reviews about this book. Unfortunately, there were to many things I didn't like.

The story tells about our heroin, Seraphina (nice name by the way). She is sixeen years old and lives in a world with humans and dragons. The dragons have the ability to transform their bodies into human forms, so they can walk amongst them. There was a war between humans and dragons them, but for forty years there has been peace, because they signed a treaty. They want to sign the treaty again, but a member of the royal family has been murdered and everything makes it appears to be the work of a dragon. Like: his head is missing and that’s significant for draconian fashion.

Seraphina comes in the middle of the investigation and she must assist Prince Lucian Kiggs to discover the murderer. There is only one problem: she is half human, half dragon. Her mother was a dragon and she must hide that part of herself before she and her father are killed. Humans are still not very fond of dragons and the times are very dangerous now.

Let me tell you about the things I liked.
Seraphina was a great character. She has a passion for music, she is intelligent and I loved her sense of humor. Her love story was very believable for me. It really developed and I could feel the connection between her and Lucian. There are a lot of other great characters. They were a bit bizarre and that makes them so wonderful. I especially liked Orma – but I wouldn’t want him to hear that if he was alive, because I think he would kill me for it. The world building was amazing. The fact that dragons can transform their appearance to humans was a nice addition.

The things I didn’t liked.
Although I think Seraphina is a wonderful girl, I didn’t connect with her. It felt like I was reading her story, I didn’t feel it. I wish I could bond some more with her. That leads me to the second point, I never had the feeling I was sucked in the story. It wasn’t hard for me to stop reading. I never reached the point where I just wanted to know the ending and I didn’t regret the fact that I was done with this book. The story has a nice pace, but I just wished it was a bit shorter.

 
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Wednesday, April 25, 2012 14:21

WoW 11. Lara Avery – Anything but ordinary.

 
Hosted by Breaking the spine.


 Anything But Ordinary
Title: Anything but ordinary.
Author: Lara Avery.
Pages: 336.
Expected publication: September 11th 2012.
Publisher: Hyperion Book CH .
ISBN: 1423163869 (ISBN13: 9781423163862)

Bryce remembers it like it was yesterday. The scent of chlorine. The blinding crack and flash of pain. Blood in the water. When she wakes up in the hospital, all Bryce can think of is her disastrous Olympic diving trial. But everything is different now. Bryce still feels seventeen, so how can her little sister be seventeen, too? Life went on without her while Bryce lay in a coma for five years. Her best friend and boyfriend have just graduated from college. Her parents barely speak. And everything she once dreamed of doing—winning a gold medal, traveling the world, falling in love—seems beyond her reach. But Bryce has changed too, in seemingly impossible ways. She knows things she shouldn’t. Things that happened while she was asleep. Things that haven’t even happened yet. During one luminous summer, as she comes to understand that her dreams have changed forever, Bryce learns to see life for what it truly is: extraordinary.

I’m always a bit fascinated by Sleeping Beauty and the fact that she awakes after so many years. This book reminds me somehow of that (but I’m just obsessed with fairytales.) Bryce lay in a coma for five years and the world around her has changed. How must it feel to wake up one day and find out that everything around you moved on?

What’s your pick? :)

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Tuesday, April 24, 2012 19:30

Top 10 Tuesday (8). Favorite characters.

Ten All Time Favorite Characters.

This is a meme hosted by The broke and the Bookish. Every Tuesday we make a list of 10 things about a certain subject. This time, we must take our 10 favorite characters. Since that is impossible for me to do, I'm going to split this up.

5 characters I love for a long time.
5 characters I got to meet this year.

All time favorites:
1. Severus Snape. This may seem as a strange choice, but I just loved him from the beginning. There is something about his sarcasm and his brutal way that I like. I always found him interesting and he seemed troubled by something. And I'm a bit influenced by the fact that Alan Rickman protrays him, haha. That vooooice.

And his dead just tore me apart. Seriously, I wondered around for days mumbling like a zombie :p I made everybody crazy around me, haha. It was hard for me to pick one, because all the characters are old friends, but he is the one I will always think of when I hear Harry Potter.

“Dumbledore watched her fly away, and as her silvery glow faded he turned back to Snape, and his eyes were full of tears.
"After all this time?"
"Always," said Snape.”


2. Waljakov. This one is, I think, very unknown. He is a character from Markus Heitz in his Dark Times & New Times fantasy books. (Total of 9 books). He is the guard of the prince and he is magnificant. I loved the fact that he is very caring, but he never want to show it. Actually, he should be a villian, but he choose to join the goodside. It was a battle for him and he always tries to conceal the marks (like red stripes in his hair). You should really get to meet him.

3. Liesel & Death. The main characters in the book thief. This girl just stole my heart and Death has a brilliant way with words.

“Usually we walk around constantly believing ourselves. "I'm okay" we say. "I'm alright". But sometimes the truth arrives on you and you can't get it off. That's when you realize that sometimes it isn't even an answer--it's a question. Even now, I wonder how much of my life is convinced.”

4. Emily Laign. From Christopher Marzi his books 'Lycidas' and 'Lilith'. Actually, there are a lot of great characters in this book. The two guys who are going to help her and her best friend Aurora are also very good. Emily is young, but definitely not naieve. She is brave and she will sacrifice everything for the ones she cares about.

5. Sorcha. Juliet Marillier is one of the best writers when it comes to building up a world with amazing characters in it. Everybody has it's own personality with good qualities and flaws. That makes them adorable. If I must choose from the Seven Waters - and that is hard, because everyone of them stole my heart - I think I like Sorcha the most. The fact that she went through all the suffering just to save the people she loves, is fantastic.

“Perhaps this is what the stories meant when they called somebody heartsick. Your heart and your stomach and your whole insides felt hollow and empty and aching.”

Favorites this year:
6. Scarlet. As you may know, I loved this book from A.C Gaughen. Scarlet is such a kick ass girl, but under all the harsh edges, there is a sweet girl. She can throw knives, she knows many curses and nobody can tell her what she must do.

7. Jessica. A character in Tracy Lynn - Snow White, a modern retelling I adored. She loses her mother when she was very young and her father never looked at her again. So, she grew up as a strange duchess; instead of leaning how to behave like a real woman, she spents all her time in the kitchen. Instead of making nice clothes, she climbs in trees with the boys. That's something I like about her so much, she's so alive and she doesn't worry about what people think. There are also other fascinating characters in this book, like Cat and Raven.

8. Rosalinda Fitzroy. Found in Anna Sheehan - A long, long sleep. Like I said in my review here, first, I was a bit annoyed by her. But after discovering more and more about her past, I felt heartbreaked by her life. I felt sympathy for this girl.

9. Azalea. One of the twelve sisters in Heather Dixon - Entwined. My review here also said that I liked all the other sisters. They all have their own personalities, but we get to know the most about Azalea. She is responsible and mature.

10. Galen. Even if it's only for the fact that he can knit and that he doesn't care if anyone thinks it's strange. He made all his socks in the army and because of his knitting, he can save the princesses from their curse. He is also very sweet and a bit shy, I like that.

"My father was a career army man, sir. I was there at the first engagement with Analousia, and took up my father's rifle when I was barely fifteen."

Let me know what you think and show me your link!

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Sunday, April 22, 2012 16:19

Review 24. Jessica Day George – Princess of the Midnight Ball.

Author: Jessica Day George.
Pages: 288.
Published: January 20th 2009. (First published January 8th 2008)
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA.
ISBN: 1599903229 (ISBN13: 9781599903224)
Sort: Part one of ‘Princess.’
A tale of twelve princesses doomed to dance until dawn… Galen is a young soldier returning from war; Rose is one of twelve princesses condemned to dance each night for the King Under Stone. Together Galen and Rose will search for a way to break the curse that forces the princesses to dance at the midnight balls. All they need is one invisibility cloak, a black wool chain knit with enchanted silver needles, and that most critical ingredient of all—true love—to conquer their foes in the dark halls below. But malevolent forces are working against them above ground as well, and as cruel as the King Under Stone has seemed, his wrath is mere irritation compared to the evil that awaits Galen and Rose in the brighter world above.
Rating:

What a cute story. It’s a retelling about the twelve dancing princesses and I love the twist in this one. Jessica has a captivating writing style and all the characters in her book are unbelievable cute. I especially liked Galen. He was a soldier and he has returned from the war. On his way to his uncle and aunt – the rest of his family died – he meets an old lady. He offers her some food and wine and she gives him an invisibility cloak and a special black wool.

When he arrives at his uncles house, he finds out that his uncle is the head gardener in the Palace and he also gets a job there as gardener. He meets Rose, but she becomes very sick and her other eleven sisters too. Still, they keep dancing on a place nobody knows and they are becoming sicker every morning. Their father is so worried, he decides to make a plan. The princesses can’t tell him where they go, because of the curse, so he invites princes through whole the country to help. If they find out where the princesses are going, they can marry one of the princesses. Unfortunately, no one is able to find out and every prince dies in a strange accident.

Galen sounds like someone everybody wants as a boyfriend. I think it’s so cool that he can knit. I loved how every princess got their own character. Most of the story is fixed on Rose, but you have the brave Poppy and her twin Daisy and the very religious Hyacint. The next book, which I’m reading right now, is about Poppy. If you love fairytales and retellings, you should take a look at this one! It’s really good and I had a lot of fun reading it.

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Saturday, April 21, 2012 17:20

Feature & Follow (3)

Hosted by
Parajunkee's View
&

Gain New Blog Followers

Q: Fight! Fight! If you could have two fictional characters battle it out (preferably from books), who would they be and who do you think would win?

I think I would like to see Scarlet, from A.C Gaughen - Scarlet. She is very good with her knives - also in throwing them - and she knows how to handle her words. She can really step up for herself. And I would like to see her battle against Katniss from Suzanne Collins - The Hunger Games. She has the bow and arrow, so they can compete against each other in the same way. It should be fun to see if she can survive that and Katniss is also brave.

What was your choice and what do you think of mine?

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Thursday, April 19, 2012 16:02

Review 23. Suzanne Collins – Mockingjay.

Again: spoilers.

Mockingjay (The Hunger Games, #3)Title: Mockingjay.
Author: Suzanne Collins.
Pages: 390.
Published: August 24th 2010.
Publisher: Scholastic Inc.
ISBN: 0439023513 (ISBN13: 9780439023511)
Sort: Part three of ‘The Hunger Games.’

My name is Katniss Everdeen. Why am I not dead? I should be dead. Katniss Everdeen, girl on fire, has survived, even though her home has been destroyed. Gale has escaped. Katniss's family is safe. Peeta has been captured by the Capitol. District 13 really does exist. There are rebels. There are new leaders. A revolution is unfolding. It is by design that Katniss was rescued from the arena in the cruel and haunting Quarter Quell, and it is by design that she has long been part of the revolution without knowing it. District 13 has come out of the shadows and is plotting to overthrow the Capitol. Everyone, it seems, has had a hand in the carefully laid plains--except Katniss. The success of the rebellion hinges on Katniss's willingness to be a pawn, to accept responsibility for countless lives, and to change the course of the future of Panem. To do this, she must put aside her feelings of anger and distrust. She must become the rebels' Mockingjay--no matter what the personal cost.

Rating: 4 out of 5. 

“And if we burn, you burn with us!”

Katniss is in district 13. She is depressed and feels awul about the fact that Peeta has been capture by the Capitol. When the first interview with Peeta pops up, he seems fine and Katniss decides to play the role of the Mockingjay. He is asking for a cease fire and that makes him a traitor.

The second interview shows a different Peeta. He is tired, very skinny and he seems to be in a lot of pain. He speaks directly to her: are you sure? Can you trust the rebels enough? Do they tell you everything? He warns them for the bombs. Right after that, they go deeper in the ground and they are just in time to escape. Katniss feels terrible. How can she live and be the Mockingjay, when her friend suffers because of her? President Coin decides to free Peeta and the other rebels in The Capitol, because Katniss can’t function.

Katniss decides to enter a special team to take over the Capitol. They must be careful, since the whole area is like a Hunger Game: full of horror like poisonous venom. A lot of people die, even someone I grow to be very fond of. I felt like crying. Finnick was my favorite after Haymitch and he was SO cute with Annie.

When they are near the Capitol, Katniss sees her sister Prim, right before District 13 – while they make everybody believes it’s the Capitol - drops their bombs. Prim dies before her eyes and that really stung me. She became such a brave girl, a lot like Katniss in the beginning. In the first book, she was just a little girl, but she's all grown up now. Suzanne Collins didn't spare her characters.

The ending.. It’s a totally different ending than I expected, but I think it really fits the story. The only thing I really disliked is the fact that Katniss has lost her courage. I really didn’t recognize her this way and her bravery was one of the things I liked about her.. I appreciate Peeta more than before, but I still don’t feel the real love between them. It’s almost like Katniss isn’t capable of feeling such thing for a guy and he’s too sweet for her.

I think I'd rather see Katniss alone. I know that it's not romantic, but her love for Gale was based on an old friendship and the love for Peeta was because of the Hunger Games. They suffered together and that gave a special bond, but I don't feel the burning passion between them. It felt like Harry Potter and Hermione Granger.

Overall, the series is great, but this book was definitely not the best one. I was a bit bored sometimes.


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Wednesday, April 18, 2012 11:22

Review 22. Suzanne Collins – Catching fire.

If you haven't read the books, don't read the review if you don't want to know. Spoilers everywhere :)

Catching Fire (The Hunger Games, #2)Title: Catching fire.
Author: Suzanne Collins.
Pages: 391.
Published: September 1st 2009.
Publisher: Scholastic Press .
ISBN: 0439023491 (ISBN13: 9780439023498)
Sort: Part two of ‘The Hunger Games.’
Sparks are igniting, flames are spreading and the Capitol wants revenge. Against all odds, Katniss has won the Hunger Games. She and fellow District 12 tribute Peeta Mellark are miraculously still alive. Katniss should be relieved, happy even. After all, she has returned to her family and longtime friend, Gale. Yet nothing is the way Katniss wishes it to be. Gale holds her at an icy distance. Peeta has turned his back on her completely. And there are whispers of a rebellion against the Capitol-- a rebellion that Katniss and Peeta may have helped create. Much to her shock, Katniss has fueled an unrest she's afraid she cannot stop. And what scares her even more is that she's not entirely convinced she should try. As time draws near for Katniss and Peeta to visit the districts on the Capitol's cruel Victory Tour, the stakes are higher than ever. If they can't prove, without a shadow of a doubt, that they are lost in their love for each other, the consequences will be horrifying.
Rating: 

Summary.
“Because sometimes things happen to people and they’re not equipped to deal with them.”

The Hunger Games are back. Every twenty five year they celebrate the games in a different way.

Katniss and Peeta are in trouble. In almost every district there is tension. There are rumors of rebellion. Katniss is afraid for the lives of everybody she loves, because Snow blames her for the rebellion. And it shows: this time, every district must deliver a survivor of a Hunger Game. That means that Katniss is up for another round and Peeta decides to take place as the male candidate. Katniss is sure that she is going to die and she is prepared to do everything to keep Peeta alive. What she doesn’t know is that Haymitch has another plan. He makes connections with other survivors with only one goal: keep her and therefore Peeta alive. No matter what.

“If you die and I live, there’s no life for me at all back in district twelve. You’re my whole life,” he says. “I would never be happy again.”

Opinion.
I was pleasantly surprised by this book. I thought the first one was pretty good, but this one blew me away! I never thought she would come up with something like this. It’s so cruel and sickly smart to send Katniss back. It’s the ultimate master plan. Just let her die there and nobody can blame the President.

I liked the fact that there is more action in this one. There is more speed in the story. Everything happens fast and that makes it more pleasant than the first one. The area is brilliant. This is what I mean with a tough area. In the Hunger Games they had it quite easy overall. Here, it’s really hard to survive. And the whole clock idea was a clever invention.

The characters in this book were so nice. Not that you get enough time to bond with them, since they die within every page, but they were brave and nice. Even a bit silly, but I like that. I especially liked Finnick and I got more feeling for Peeta, but he is still not my favorite.
 
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Tuesday, April 17, 2012 11:55

Top 10 Tuesday (7). Blog tips.

Today is my real birthday! I'm official 21 now, but I don't feel older than yesterday. Sometimes, I'm really scared to wake up and find out that I'm like 80 years old.. Do you know that movie in which the girl wakes up all grown up? That was a real nightmare for me when I watched it as a little girl. Time flies by so fast. And yeah, I always act like this on my birthday, haha.

But, today another Top 10 tuesday hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

It's all about helping other people out this time.
Top Ten Tips For New (Book) Bloggers.

Since I'm a newbie in this big blog world, I don't think I can make up 10 tips for New (book) bloggers, so I'm going to reach at least 5.

1. Be yourself. And that's really the most important tip you can get. Don't try to be someone else, because one day, people will start to notice. Why would anyone wants to read a blog from someone who's pretending to be someone else? You're fine the way you are! And so is your blog. The fact that everyone is unique, makes your blog unique and fantastic.
2. Time. Don't expect 10 followers when you only started one day. It takes time for people to find your blog and to get to know you. There is no way you can become popular after a week (unless I did something wrong, haha.)
3. Regular posting. Nobody wants to follow a blog from someone who only writes once a month. So you really have to put effort in your blog to make people notice it. And you definitely can't disappear and show up when you feel like it.
4. Effort in commenting. If people comment on your blog, try to comment back. That's something that shows that you are really interested in what other people tell you. Also, try to visit other blogs and comment over there. I visit new blogs and blogs I follow every day, just to make a connection with other bloggers.
5. Subject. Try to make a blog about something you are interested in. For me, that's reading. For others, that's make-up. If you have a passion for something, it won't feel like you have to force yourself to post. Stick to the things you love and maybe you can get other people to love it to. I'm crazy about fairytales, so I like to tell as much about is as I can :) and perhaps some other people are starting to wonder if they would like fairytales too.
6. Participate. Try to participate in challenges and weekly themes like 'Top 10 Tuesday, Waiting on Wednesday and especially Feature & Follow'. I've noticed that, when I started doing these things, I got a lot of followers and reactions.
7. Learning. And the last tip I want to give you is: blogging is learning. You have to find out what works for you. Everybody writes a review in his own way and you have to discover how you like to write it.
So, this is all I want to give to you. I hope it helps new bloggers :)

Mel.

Sunday, April 15, 2012 19:39

Review 21. Mercedes Lackey - Beauty and the werewolf.

Beauty and the Werewolf (Five Hundred Kingdoms, #6)Mercedes Lackey - Beauty and the werewolf.
Pages: 329.
Published: October 18th 2011.
Publisher: Luna                    
Serie: part six of the five hundred kingdoms, but you can read it as a stand alone.
The magic continues in "New York Times"-bestselling author Lackey's enchanting new story from the Tales of the Five Hundred Kingdoms series. A beauty must battle some beasts before she rescues her prince.

Rating: 


I know that this book is part of the Five hundred kingdoms series, but Beauty and the Beast is my favorite tale ever, so I had to read this one. This book definitely persuaded me to read the other books.

“Nevertheless, now that I have met you, I know that all that I am, and all that I have, could not match what you are worth.”  


This time we meet Isabella - Bella - who is going to the Granny of the village. When she returns home - it's already very late - she gets bitten by a wolf. And not just á wolf, a werewolf. His name is Sebastian and he's the duke.

Immediately she's taken away from home and placed in the same house as Sebastian. They want to make sure that she won't become a werewolf herself. In meantime she get to know Sebastian and his very strange household. She finds out that there's much more going on than she thought and she makes big changes in Sebastians life. But is that enough?

I just lóved it. I adore Bella in this story. She's witty, she knows what she want and she says what she think. She's a rebel and I truly enjoyed reading this story about her. On the other hand you have the arrogant Eric and the shy Sebastian. It was also a very original twist of the story.


Saturday, April 14, 2012 21:33

In my mailbox (3)

Hosted by: The story Siren.

Today I am celebrating my birthday with the family (april 17th is my real birthday.) I got a lot of present and the money will be spended on - ofcourse - books! Haha. I will show you the books I got when I bought them on the internet. But for now, I got three books on Netgalley I want to show you.

SeraphinaTitle: Seraphina.
Author: Rachel Hartman.
Pages: 464.
Expected publication: July 19th 2012.
Publisher: Random House Children's Books.             

Four decades of peace have done little to ease the mistrust between humans and dragons in the kingdom of Goredd. Folding themselves into human shape, dragons attend court as ambassadors, and lend their rational, mathematical minds to universities as scholars and teachers. As the treaty's anniversary draws near, however, tensions are high. Seraphina Dombegh has reason to fear both sides. An unusually gifted musician, she joins the court just as a member of the royal family is murdered—in suspiciously draconian fashion. Seraphina is drawn into the investigation, partnering with the captain of the Queen's Guard, the dangerously perceptive Prince Lucian Kiggs. While they begin to uncover hints of a sinister plot to destroy the peace, Seraphina struggles to protect her own secret, the secret behind her musical gift, one so terrible that its discovery could mean her very life.

BlackbirdsTitle: Blackbirds.
Author: Chuck Wendig.
Pages: 384.
Expected publication: April 24th 2012.
Publisher: Angry Robot.

Miriam Black knows when you will die. She’s foreseen hundreds of car crashes, heart attacks, strokes, and suicides. But when Miriam hitches a ride with Louis Darling and shakes his hand, she sees that in thirty days Louis will be murdered while he calls her name. Louis will die because he met her, and she will be the next victim. No matter what she does she can’t save Louis. But if she wants to stay alive, she’ll have to try.

Title: The shapeshifter's secret.
Author: Heather Ostler.
Pages: 328.
Expected publication: June 12th 2012.
Publisher: Cedar Fort.

Julia is finally discovering what–not who–she is. Like any sixteen-year-old, Julia's used to dealing with problems. From her overprotective father to her absent mother to a teacher who definitely has it in for her. But everything changes when Julia's reactions become oddly vicious and angry---more animal than human. This action-packed adventure has it all: humor, romance, and a plot that will keep you guessing to the very last page.

So thanks to the publishers! :D

Mel.
Friday, April 13, 2012 16:39

Feature & Follow (2)


Hosted by Parajunkee's view & Alison can read.

Q: What is one book that you would be nervous to see a movie adaption of because you think the movie could never live up to the book?

Markus Zusak - The book thief. That book is wonderful. The beautiful writing and the way his words flow, there is no way you can capture that in a movie. I think that the concept would not work out on screen. The feeling in the book is created by his hand and there's no way anyone could translate. But the story itself has certainly potential to be a movie. I think that people who haven't read the book will be fascinated by the movie, but it's one of my favorites, so I would be nervous.

Don't know which book I'm talking about? You can find my review over here: The book thief.

What is your answer this time? Let me know!

Mel.
Thursday, April 12, 2012 15:13

Review 20. Suzanne Collins – The Hunger Games.

So, I finally read this book and I know that there are so many reviews about it, but I still want to post mine :) If you haven’t read this book – and I think that is almost impossible. I really feel like the last person on earth who just read this book for the first time – there are spoilers.

The Hunger Games (The Hunger Games, #1)Title: The Hunger Games.
Author: Suzanne Collins.
Pages: 274.
Published: October 31st 2008 (first published September 14th 2008)
Publisher: Scholastic Inc.
ISBN: 0439023483 (ISBN13: 9780439023481)
Sort: part one of ‘The Hunger Games.’
Could you survive on your own, in the wild, with everyone out to make sure you don't live to see the morning? In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV. Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she is forced to represent her district in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before-and survival.
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. 

We get to meet Katniss, who lives with her mother and sister Prim in district twelve. She is very good with bow and arrows. Hunting is the only way to provide her family with food and money. Every year, there are The Hunger Games. These are hosted to remind the people what happened years ago. It’s also entertainment for the rich people who live in the Capitol. For the Hunger Games, every district must provide one boy and one girl. They must battle against each other until there is one winner. When Katniss’ sister is chosen, Katniss volunteers in her place. Peeta is the chosen boy. Before the Hunger Games really start, they get a mentor, a crew for their appearance and teachers. Their mentor is Haymitch. He is drunk, harsh and in the beginning you expect him to be useless.

During the game, there is a change in rules: from now on, a girl and a boy from the same district can win the title. She finds Peeta and he is wounded, almost dying. Her feelings for him become very complicated. She must play the role of a girl who is madly in love, but how does she really feels about him? In the end, they manage to survive both and then they find out that the rule is changed again. There can only be one winner..

What I really liked about this book are the characters and their development. Katniss is a tough girl, but she has a soft side and that gave her a real personality. Peeta was not my favorite, but that’s also because he was a whiny boy in the movie. I think that I like Gale more. I don’t know why, but I liked Haymitch from the beginning. I felt a certain sympathy for him. Imagine his role in The Hunger Games. Coaching a girl and a boy and seeing them die every year.

The strength of this book is the reflection to our lives. It’s true: everybody wants to see more blood and action. Look at the programs on television, where people do these crazy things for money. Nothing is silly enough. We always try to cross the line. Just push the limits a bit further. How many years before we host our own Hunger Games? Thinking about it makes me sick, but I don’t think that something like that is off limits.. When we always want more, where will we end someday? Watching people butcher each other for money and excitement? I’m frightened for the future sometimes.

I still wonder why this book is SUCH a hype. It’s fantastic indeed, but why is this particular book so popular? At least I’m happy that it’s about a very good book, instead of some other hypes we have had. And I know that you know what I’m talking about ;)

Mel.
Wednesday, April 11, 2012 16:55

WoW 10. A.G. Howard - Splintered.



Splintered
Title: Splintered.
Author: A.G. Howard.
Pages: 400.
Expected publication: January 1st 2013.
Publisher: Amulet Books.
ISBN: 1419704281 (ISBN13: 9781419704284)

For sixteen years, Alyssa Gardner has lived with the stigma of being descended from Alice Liddell -- the real life inspiration for Lewis Carroll's famed novel, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. But cruel jokes about dormice and tea parties can’t compare to the fact that Alyssa hears the whispers of bugs and flowers ... the same quirk which sent her mother to a mental institution years before. When her mother takes a turn for the worse and the whispers grow too strong for Alyssa to bear, she seeks the origins of their family curse. A set of heirlooms and a moth tied to an unusual website lead Alyssa and her gorgeous best friend / secret crush, Jeb, down the rabbit hole into the real Wonderland, a place more twisted and eerie than Lewis Carroll ever let on. There, creepy counterparts of the original fairytale crew reveal the purpose for Alyssa’s journey, and unless she fixes the things her great-great-great grandmother Alice put wrong, Wonderland will have her head.

First of all, look at the cover. If I would spot this in the bookstore, I think I would buy it. Love at first sight. This is a complete cover. The letters, the details, the 'welcome to the real wonderland' line.
After reading the synopsis, I was fascinated by this book. A place more twisted and eerie than Lewis Carroll's Wonderland. A dark version of Alice in Wonderland? Fixing the origins of the family curse? That sounds great doesn't it?

Such a shame that we must wait until next year..

Mel.
Monday, April 09, 2012 14:48

Review 19. Carrie Vaughn - Steel.

SteelCarrie Vaughn - Steel.
Pages: 294.
Published: March 15th 2011(first published February 25th 2011).
Publisher: by Harper Teen.
ISBN: 0061547913 (ISBN13: 9780061547911)
Series: stand alone.
It was a slender length of rusted steel, tapered to a point at one end and jagged at the other, as if it had broken. A thousand people would step over it and think it trash, but not her. This was the tip of a rapier.

Sixteen-year-old Jill has fought in dozens of fencing tournaments, but she has never held a sharpened blade. When she finds a corroded sword piece on a Caribbean beach, she is instantly intrigued and pockets it as her own personal treasure. The broken tip holds secrets, though, and it transports Jill through time to the deck of a pirate ship. Stranded in the past and surrounded by strangers, she is forced to sign on as crew. But a pirate’s life is bloody and brief, and as Jill learns about the dark magic that brought her there, she forms a desperate scheme to get home—one that risks everything in a duel to the death with a villainous pirate captain.
Rating: 

We meet Jill, a normal girl living with her father, mother, brother and sister. They're on a holiday and Jill is sad, because she lost a rapier tournament. When she's strolling along the beach, she finds a peace of an old sword. She decides to bring it with her when they're making a boat trip. She falls of the ship and before she knows it, she's in another time on a pirate ship. The captain is a woman and she recognize the part of the sword; it's from her biggest enemy. Jill must come with her, because she has something to do with it, otherwise she wouldn't have that piece. Jill only wants to find the man, because he can bring her back to her own time. But, that won't be an easy task.

There's a lot of fighting during this book, but I never thought it was too much. And yes, there are some things that probably would never happen during that time, but it didn't bother me so much. I just enjoyed the reading and I found Jill a lovely person to read about :)  This story was almost complete for me. It has great characters, the surroundings, the love and action. Only one thing annoyed me, but I'm not going to spoiler it.


Have you read this book or heard about it before? :) Let me know!
Saturday, April 07, 2012 15:48

Review 18. Sarah Cross – Kill me softly.

Kill Me SoftlyTitel: Kill me softly.
Author: Sarah Cross.
Pages: 314.
Expected publication: April 10th 2012.
Publisher: Egmont USA.
ISBN: 1606843230 (ISBN13: 9781606843239)
Source: NetGalley.
Sort: stand alone.
Mirabelle’s past is shrouded in secrecy, from her parents' tragic deaths to her guardians' half-truths about why she can't return to her birthplace, Beau Rivage. Desperate to see the town, Mira runs away a week before her sixteenth birthday—and discovers a world she never could have imagined. In Beau Rivage, nothing is what it seems—the strangely pale girl with a morbid interest in apples, the obnoxious playboy who's a beast to everyone he meets, and the chivalrous guy who has a thing for damsels in distress. Here, fairy tales come to life, curses are awakened, and ancient stories are played out again and again. But fairy tales aren't pretty things, and they don't always end in happily ever after. Mira has a role to play, a fairy tale destiny to embrace or resist. As she struggles to take control of her fate, Mira is drawn into the lives of two brothers with fairy tale curses of their own . . . brothers who share a dark secret. And she'll find that love, just like fairy tales, can have sharp edges and hidden thorns.
Rating

I lost her. I destroyed her. But I never forgot her. I never let her go.”



Mira, short for Mirabella, lives with her two godmothers. They are preparing her sixteenth birthday, although she isn’t planning on celebrating it. No, better yet, she is planning to ‘escape’. She is going to visit the city where she and her parents lived before they died in a fire. Her godmothers aren’t planning on taking her there , because of the bad memories, so she decides to go on a trip herself. When she arrives there, it’s not what she expected. She can’t rent a room and she ends up in some kind of restaurant in a casino staring at her cold fries. Two boys appear: Blue and Freddie. He sends her away. Apparently, his father owns the place and he says it’s not save for her to be there.

She meets another boy. It’s the brother of Blue – Felix. He takes her back to the casino and he gives her a room. The next morning she awakes by a ‘bang’ on the door. Blue breaks into her room, with Freddie, and he is angry. Again: he tells her it’s not save for her and the takes her away to bring her to another place where she can stay. He’s taking her to someone called Viv.

Viv is the first fairytale character Mira meets. When they are in the Gingerbread restaurant to get something to eat, we get to know more characters. There is some kind of curse everybody is talking about and Mira is confused. When Mira is on the beach with the whole gang – even though she keeps repeating how awful Blue is, that she doesn’t like him and that he must leave – she notices something strange. Blue and Felix both have a red spot on their back, precisely where she has the same mark. What does that mean? It’s the beginning of a huge discovery.

Mira.. What can I say about her? Naive, stupid, annoying? That would be the words I would like to describe her. Sleeping with a guy you just met while his brother warns you that you can’t trust him? That he is dangerous? Yes, sounds like a great thing to do! Why not, he is hot. Damn, what’s up with all these books? Since when do we girls need to hop on boys, throw ourselves at them, just because their body is muscled and their face is gorgeous? What happened to building up a relationship with someone? What’s wrong with getting to know each other before you desperately fall in love with him? This line describes it perfectly:

Blue shrugged. “I needed to get Mirabrat out of the hotel. Felix latched on to her and she thinks he’s dreamy.”

In the end, I liked the way Sarah used popular and unknown fairy tales to make an original story. I only wished I liked Mira better, because that spoiled the whole story. I do adore Blue. He was, besides the fairytales, the only thing that kept me reading :) The ending was very cute and satisfying though.

Mel.
Friday, April 06, 2012 10:33

Feature & Follow (1)

Gain New Blog Followers
The Feature & Follow is hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of Parajunkee's View and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it'll allow us to show off more new blogs!

Q: Have you ever bought a book BECAUSE of a bad review?
Actually, I like to do that sometimes, just to see if I have the same opinion. I have had a couple of times where I end up loving the book, so I keep doing it. A bad review makes me wonder about the book. There are a couple of ‘rules’ I have set up for myself, because I want to buy books I know I’m going to love.

If there are a lot of bad reviews, and I do some research for it, I probably won’t give it a try. It also depends on the reasons someone disliked the book. For example: If the characters are ignorant and dull with zero personality, I’m not going to buy it. That’s one thing I hate so much about a book. But if it’s based on the writing style, I don’t mind to try it :) That’s just something personal.

Sometimes when a book is popular and it get’s bad reviews, I want to see why certain people love it. Like ‘Twilight.’ I absolutely hate those books and I’m still stuck in the third. I want to read them, so I can really tell my opinion about it. The only thing I’m very glad about is that I bought them in a cheap bookstore :p

Tell me, what’s your answer this week?



Tuesday, April 03, 2012 19:26

Top 10 Tuesday (6) To read in one day.



This is hosted by The broke and the bookish.

Top ten books to read in one day.


1. Tracy Lynn – Snow. A modern retelling of Snow white. I will be posting a review of this one :) I loved it! It’s funny.
2. Carrie Ryan – The forest of hand and teeth. My first zombie book ever and it really made an impression on me. I have a small review on this one, but I will post a larger review, because I want everybody to know this one.
3. Steve MosbyThe 50/50 killer. This was such a good thriller. Few horrible details, but I love his writing. His other three books are also very good, but I especially love this one.
4. J.K Rowling – Harry Potter and the order of the Phoenix. I never read this book in one day, because it’s much too thick, but it’s my favorite one of Harry Potter :)
5. Neil Gaiman – Stardust. Thin and cute <3
6. Cameron Dokey – Beauty sleep. This author was such a great discovery for me at the end of last year! Her fairytales retellings are magnificent. They really capture the fairytale feeling. This was my first book of her and I really liked it.
7. Zoë Marriott – The swan kingdom. Also a retelling. The characters in this book are very believable and I loved the twist in this one.
8. Juliet Marillier – Heart’s blood. Retelling of Beauty and the beast. One of my favorite books :) This story is wonderful! Details, characters, the magical feeling, everything fits.
9. Christoph Marzi – Lycidas. You must like his writingstyle. You hate it or you love it and I belong to the last. It’s about another magical world under London. A bit Harry Potter-ish. Unfortunately, there is no English translation (as far as I could see.)
10. Katherine Neville – The eight. A book about chess. I never expected to like it so much, but it was really good!


So, what’s your choice this time?
Monday, April 02, 2012 21:00

In my mailbox (2)


This is hosted by The story Siren.

Today I received my second book on Netgalley! I'm so excited about it! This time I got a book from the publisher Faber and Faber. Thank you so much!

The GlimpseTitle: The glimpse.
Author: Claire Merle.
Pages: 432.
Expected publication: June 7th 2012.
Publisher: Faber & Faber (UK).
ISBN: 0571280536 (ISBN13: 9780571280537)Series: stand alone.
Once you've seen into the future, can you change your destiny?
In a near future, society is segregated according to whether people are genetically disposed to mental illness. 17-year-old Ana has been living the privileged life of a Pure due to an error in her DNA test. When the authorities find out, she faces banishment from her safe Community, a fate only thwarted by the fact that she has already been promised to Pure-boy Jasper Taurell.  Jasper is from a rich and influential family and despite Ana’s condition, wants to be with her. The authorities grant Ana a tentative reprieve. If she is joined to Jasper before her 18th birthday, she may stay in the Community until her illness manifests. But if Jasper changes his mind, she will be cast out among the Crazies. As Ana’s joining ceremony and her birthday loom closer, she dares to hope she will be saved from the horror of the City and live a ‘normal’ life. But then Jasper disappears. Led to believe Jasper has been taken by a strange sect the authorities will not intefere with, Ana sneaks out of her well-guarded Community to find him herself. Her search takes her through the underbelly of society and into the pits of the human soul. And as she delves deeper into the mystery of Jasper's abduction she uncovers some devastating truths that destroy everything she has grown up to believe, but she also learns to love as she has never loved before.

I'm almost done in 'Kill me softly - Sarah Cross' so that review will be posted soon :) After that, I'm going to read this one right away!

Let me know what you got!

Sunday, April 01, 2012 17:34

Review 17. Carolyn Turgeon - Mermaid.

Mermaid: A Twist on the Classic TaleTitle: Mermaid: a twist on the classic story.
Author: Carolyn Turgeon.
Pages: 240.
Published: March 1st 2011.
Publisher: Crown Publishing Group.                     
ISBN: 0307589978 (ISBN13: 9780307589972)
Serie: stand alone.
Princess Margrethe has been hidden away while her kingdom is at war. One gloomy, windswept morning, as she stands in a convent garden overlooking the icy sea, she witnesses a miracle: a glittering mermaid emerging from the waves, a nearly drowned man in her arms. By the time Margrethe reaches the shore, the mermaid has disappeared into the sea. As Margrethe nurses the handsome stranger back to health, she learns that not only is he a prince, he is also the son of her father's greatest rival. Sure that the mermaid brought this man to her for a reason, Margrethe devises a plan to bring peace to her kingdom. Meanwhile, the mermaid princess Lenia longs to return to the human man she carried to safety. She is willing to trade her home, her voice, and even her health for legs and the chance to win his heart...
Rating: 

I was hooked to her writing-style. I really liked it.

The story tells about two girls. One is Lenia, a mermaid princess. The other is Margarethe, a human princess. Lenia always felt a desire to be human. To have a soul. She's totally obsessed with it and she loves the stories her grandmother tells her about the 'upper world.' When she turns 18, she is allowed to take a peek. She gets caught up in a storm and she notices a ship. The men are dying, but she saves one of them. A boy she immediately falls in love with (bit unrealistic, but very romantic at the same time.) She swam with him to shore and there she meets Margarethe. Margareth is at a nunnery, because her land is in some kind of war with another land. She takes the man into the nunnery.

From there one the story develops itself in a brilliant way. A lot of things happen, but I'm not going to spoil it for you. Just find out yourself.


Lenia wants to be human that she sacrifices a lot. She must marry the prince, then she'll get a soul. If he marries someone else, she'll became foam like all the other mermaids when they die. (And she sacrifices her voice, her family and every time she'll walk, her feet will feel like they're pierced by knives).

I felt really sad during the end. I know how the real story ended and I was afraid that this story would end that way too. It's slightly different, but still só sad. Like I always say, happy endings are really my thing, but somehow.. The sad ending completed the story.


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