Bank Holiday Book Tag

My lovely friend Cora (over at TeaPartyPrincess) created this tag, centred around things we usually do around Bank Holiday!

Have a lie in: which book could you lounge in bed with all morning?Image result for the scarecrow queenThe Scarecrow Queen by Melinda Salisbury. It just is magnificent. I love Twylla’s progression. If I could be left in bed wtih all 3 of the series, that would be magnificent.

Oh my goodness, it’s so sunny outside: which book makes you feel optimistic?Image result for wing jonesWing Jones by Katherine Webber. Wing Jones is such an incredible young woman, she actually made me want to go running. I think I need to get Wing out again to get my motivation back!

Spend some time outdoors: which book that reminds you of nature?34992381The Explorer – Katherine Rundell is written so beautifully that it is definitely one that makes me feel like I’m outside, in the rainforest with the kids.

Make some punch.: which book do you find difficult to classify into one genre?Image result for out of the blue sophie cameronOut of the Blue – Sophie Cameron. It’s contemporary, fantasy, magical realism… all those brilliant things in one! 

Pass some food around: which book you want to share with everyone?
Image result for perijee and me
Perijee and Me – Ross Montgomery. It’s one of the first books I shared with the kids at school and we all fell in love with it. I had readit during the summer hoidays and knew I needed to use it as a class reader.
Light the BBQ: which book took a while to get going?
Image result for where the world endsWhere the World Ends – Geraldine McCaughrean. I’m so glad I stuck with this book, it’s dark and grim. It’s properly good though. 
Failed BBQ: which book ultimately disappointed you?
Image result for caraval
Caraval by Stephanie Garber. I had SUCH HIGH EXPECTATIONS for this book and it just didn’t spark my imagination like I was hoping. (I know A LOT OF PEOPLE love this book though)
It’s raining. Of course: which book would you curl up with when it’s raining outside?
Image result for the storm keeper's islandThe Storm Keeper’s Island – Catherine Doyle. Capturing the island’s weather in candles and using their power… man, this book is special.
Let’s just eat the chocolate: which book issuper sweet?
Image result for a quiet kind of thunderA Quiet Kind of Thunder – Sara Barnard. Guys, I have such a love for this book it’s unreal. I miss Steffi and Rhys. I hope they make a reappearance in my life some day. Just one of the loveliest love stories ever. 
And there you have it! My bank holiday tag books! If you fancy doing this tag, please feel free! 
Enjoy your bank holiday! 
S x

S4S – Besties or baddies?

HOLA.

Sunday again. #SixforSunday again. Six more characters again. 

This time we’re talking

Characters I would NOT like to be friends with

Last week, I shared 6 characters I think would make BRILLIANT best friends… this week, 6 that I personally would not enjoy thanks.

  1. The Sleeping Prince – The Sin Eater’s Daughter trilogy
    LOL. Him. He’s a disaster. He’s pretty mean too. He scares me a bit. There’s a fair few Melinda Salisbury character that are SINISTER. 
  2. Reban Don – Extinction Trials
    This dude is sneaky and sly and I do not approve. I think he’d be the kind of friend who would go behind your back and smile at your face. 
  3. Simon – One of Us Is Lying
    IDK, he’s just a bit sinister and manipulative for my liking.
  4. Phoebe – Freshers
    I just didn’t blend with this gal well. 
  5. Scarlett – Caraval
    Oh man. I mean it might just be my opinion of Caraval reflecting on this choice, but no thanks. I’m not sure I’m a fan of this girl.
  6. Katniss – The Hunger Games
    I think we all know I don’t like her. I could write quite a long blog post on this, but I won’t.

An interesting mix there of people I don’t like because they’re sneaky, and people that I just didn’t click with as characters. 

I’d love to see who you wouldn’t like to have as a friend! It’d be interesting to see if you’ve got any the same as me! Share your choices using the hashtag #SixforSunday and I’ll happily check them out! 

S x

BOOKBLOG: Stephanie Garber

Caraval: magical, beautifully written, well crafted.

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“Welcome to Caraval, where nothing is quite what it seems.

Scarlett has never left the tiny isle of Trisda, pining from afar for the wonder of Caraval, a once-a-year, week-long performance where the audience participates in the show. Caraval is magic, mystery adventure and for Scarlett and her beloved sister Tella it represents freedom and an escape from their ruthless, abusive father. When Scarlett discovers her father has arranged a marriage for her she believes all her hopes of escape have been dashed.

Then the sisters’ long-awaited invitations to Caraval finally arrive and it seems their dreams have come true. Yet, no sooner have they entered the confines of Caraval than Tella vanishes, kidnapped by the show’s mastermind organiser, Legend.

Scarlett has been told that everything that happens during Caraval is only an elaborate performance. But nonetheless she quickly becomes enmeshed in a dangerous game of love, magic and heartbreak. Real or not, she must find Tella before the game is over, and her sister disappears forever.”

Ah, Caraval. I had SUCH HIGH HOPES. I had heard such wonderful things. I had been hunting for a new The Night Circus for forever. I had my hopes that this was going to fill that void… it did, kind of. Now don’t get me wrong… this isn’t going to be a review that pulls the book apart – far from it! I am going to regale you of all of the things I loved about it, but for me SOMETHING was missing. I enjoyed Caraval, but there was SOMETHING not there. It took me about 300 pages to properly invest my time. 

The characters of this story were ones in which definitely grow on you, except Julian. I liked him instantly. I don’t know what it is about loveable, rogueish types… I just fall for them instantly. Scarlett, the main character, in this annoyed me A LOT for the first half of the book but then she found her edge, she found her personality. I get that her sister was her main drive for this adventure but at times her sister was ALL that she could focus on and it aggravated me to no end. She’s reasonable, an overthinker and a worrier. Her sister Donatella on the other hand is compulsive, spontaneous and brazen. The juxtaposition of the two sisters was one of my favourite things about this book. Their relationship was important. Their comparisons endearing. Their father is repulsive. He is a violent, repulsive, manipulative bully. He’s mean. He’s intimidating. I would want to escape him too. 

I loved the idea of this story though. I am a sucker for magical stories. I was sold on this as soon as I heard of it. The Night Circus is one of my favourite stories of ever and when people started comparing this to The Night Circus I knew I had to see what the hype was all about. There are some exquisite moments of description and you definitely can get lost in the writing. It is a book that when I was reading I was getting through massive chunks – the writing is so descriptive, so precise that you could be there. You can imagine the landscape, the colours… you can be there because it is written so beautifully. Not only is it written beautifully but the hardback covers are so exquisite. I prefer these beautiful illustrations to the paper cover… so tempting to try and get all 4. I have the clock. It’s beautiful, I wish I had the dress though. The magical dress that Scarlett ends up with.

Image result for caraval

This book is definitely one big adventure. There are moments that pack a punch. There are moments of sheer frustration. It is worth the ride. I didn’t love it as much as I hoped, but I enjoyed it. I am looking forward to seeing what happens next in this series though. I’m not sure where it’s going to go from here!

Have you read Caraval? Did you love it? Can you recommend me a magical book that will fill in my The Night Circus void? Let me know in the comments or on twitter (@eenalol).

S x

2017 books!

So here we come to that part of the year when I get to FINALLY think about books that are being released next year that I can look forward to and MY WORD there are SO SO SO MANY. Some that I’ve been waiting MONTHS for, some that have just recently come into my mind but I thought I would make a blog post to tell you some of the books I’m most excited about! 

I am lucky enough to get to see and read some of these on Net Galley already, so I will review them but I can’t to get my hands on them PHYSICALLY. These will all be YA, there is a MG post to come!

My MOST anticipated book… because I’ve been chasing Mel FOREVER.

Scarecrow Queen – Melinda Salisbury (#queenmel)

“The final battle is coming…As the Sleeping Prince tightens his hold on Lormere and Tregellan, the net closes in on the ragged band of rebels trying desperately to defeat him. Twylla and Errin are separated, isolated, and running out of time. The final battle is coming, and Aurek will stop at nothing to keep the throne forever..”

I CAN NOT WAIT. I can’t wait to find out what happens to Twylla. OHMYHOLYLORD.#isittimeyet

Traitor To The Throne – Alwyn Hamilton

This is not about blood or love. This is about treason.
Nearly a year has passed since Amani and the rebels won their epic battle at Fahali. Amani has come into both her powers and her reputation as the Blue-Eyed Bandit, and the Rebel Prince’s message has spread across the desert – and some might say out of contr

ol. But when a surprise encounter turns into a brutal kidnapping, Amani finds herself betrayed in the cruellest manner possible.
Stripped of her powers and her identity, and torn from the man she loves, Amani must return to her desert-girl’s instinct for survival. For the Sultan’s palace is a dangerous one, and the harem is a viper’s nest of suspicion, fear and intrigue. Just the right place for a spy to thrive… But spying is a dangerous game, and when ghosts from Amani’s past emerge to haunt her, she begins to wonder if she can trust her own treacherous heart.”

Wing Jones – Katherine Webber25909375

“A sweeping story about love and family from an exceptional new voice in YA. With a grandmother from China and another from Ghana, fifteen-year-old Wing Jones is often caught between worlds. But when tragedy strikes, Wing discovers a talent for running she never knew she had. Wing’s speed could bring her family everything it needs. It could also stop Wing getting the one thing she wants.”

Caraval – Stephanie Garber

27883214” Welcome to Caraval, where nothing is quite what it seems.
Scarlett has never left the tiny isle of Trisda, pining from afar for the wonder of Caraval, a once-a-year week-long performance where the audience participates in the show.
Caraval is Magic. Mystery. Adventure. And for Scarlett and her beloved sister Tella it represents freedom and an escape from their ruthless, abusive father.
When the sisters’ long-awaited invitations to Caraval finally arrive, it seems their dreams have come true. But no sooner have they arrived than Tella vanishes, kidnapped by the show’s mastermind organiser, Legend.
Scarlett has been told that everything that happens during Caraval is only an elaborate performance. But nonetheless she quickly becomes enmeshed in a dangerous game of love, magic and heartbreak. And real or not, she must find Tella before the game is over, and her sister disappears forever.”

Gilded Cage – Vic James30258320

 “A modern Britain
An age-old cruelty
Britain’s magically skilled aristocracy compels all commoners to serve them for ten years – and now it’s the Hadleys’ turn. Abi Hadley is assigned to England’s most ruthless noble family. The secrets she uncovers could win her freedom – or break her heart. Her brother Luke is enslaved in a brutal factory town, where new friends’ ideals might cost him everything.

Then while the elite vie for power, a young aristocrat plots to remake the world with his dark gifts. As Britain moves from anger to defiance, all three must take sides. And the consequences of their choices will change everything, forever.”

A Quiet Kind of Thunder – Sara Barnard

 “Steffi doesn’t talk, but she has so much to say.
Rhys can’t hear, but he can listen.
Their love isn’t a lightning strike, it’s the rumbling roll of thunder.
Steffi has been a selective mute for most of her life – she’s been silent for so long that she feels completely invisible. But Rhys, the new boy at school, sees her. He’s deaf, and her knowledge of basic sign language means that she’s assigned to look after him. To Rhys it doesn’t matter that Steffi doesn’t talk and, as they find ways to communicate, Steffi finds that she does have a voice, and that she’s falling in love with the one person who makes her feel brave enough to use it.”

I have had the pleasure of reading and reviewing this! You’ll find my review on my blog… BOOKBLOG: Sara Barnard

There are SO MANY more I can’t wait to see and touch and read and share with you all!

Which 2017 releases are you most excited for? Let me know in the comments or on twitter (@eenalol)

S x