Shatter Me – Tahereh Mafi – Review

Shatter Me

Synopsis Logo

Juliette hasn’t touched anyone in exactly 264 days.

The last time she did, it was an accident, but The Reestablishment locked her up for murder. No one knows why Juliette’s touch is fatal. As long as she doesn’t hurt anyone else, no one really cares. The world is too busy crumbling to pieces to pay attention to a 17-year-old girl. Diseases are destroying the population, food is hard to find, birds don’t fly anymore, and the clouds are the wrong color.

The Reestablishment said their way was the only way to fix things, so they threw Juliette in a cell. Now so many people are dead that the survivors are whispering war – and The Reestablishment has changed its mind. Maybe Juliette is more than a tortured soul stuffed into a poisonous body. Maybe she’s exactly what they need right now.

Juliette has to make a choice: Be a weapon. Or be a warrior.

My Rating Logo

4 star logo

X-Men Vibes, A Spectacular Plot, Incredibly Immersive & Addictive Page Turner.

My Thoughts

When I started reading Shatter Me I unwittingly thought it was a standalone! I didn’t want to start a new series but it seems I’ve got myself into a whole sticky uncontrollable mess, because this book is a gem!

Now at the start of the book the author explains that the crazy writing to begin with is Juliette’s mind going a bit haywire and NOT grammatical mistakes. I thought this was really interesting and quite clever. It gave me an insight into how Juliette was coping inside herself and opened up her emotional state which I really appreciated. I really got a feel for Juliette’s character this way and had a grasp on her story.

One of the things that drew me to the book was the phrase ‘a touch from her can kill’. Plots like this always intrigue me and instantly pull me into the story. I needed to find out why, why is one touch all it takes, how is it possible, WHAT IS THIS SORCERY?! The book doesn’t give you the answer right away and I just loved the mystery! I was so incredibly immersed in the story that I read 75% in just a few short hours. The time flew by and I was really sad to head off to bed! This is a real page turner.

I have to say I wasn’t too keen on the romance in this one. I am a full on lover of romance and really wanted to like it and fall in love myself, but this one was very instantaneous and a bit confusing to be honest. I felt betrayed by the guys initial actions and didn’t really know if I could trust him and why Juliette did? My feelings are very upended about him and I’m still unsure now. I know people like a bit of mystery but not for me, I’m a ‘I know you’re the good guy lover boy’ kinda gal.

There’s one thing I’m sure of and that is that Warner is a complete A-hole. I didn’t like him, didn’t like his weird agenda or his creepy affections for Juliette. Now it may be that there’s a twist with him, I don’t know, but either way he’s already been a creep so I don’t really care if he turns it around or not, I have no love for him. He’s a perfect baddy though.

A lovable character of mine was Kenji. He’s your typical lad on the surface, all banter and boisterous, but I think there’s something deeper there and I’d like it to be explored in the sequels.

I really enjoyed how the plot played out and ended up with a lot of my questions partially answered by the finale, which in my opinion was a spectacular cliffhanger and has me wanting more. I got definite X-Men vibes from this book and I absolutely loved it!


*I’d like to thank Netgalley and Egmont Publishing for sending the book my way in return for an honest review*

I’m aware that the Shatter Me series is a few years old now, but there have never been UK editions. The global publication date for the final book Restore Me will be 6th March 2018 and Egmont will publish UK editions of Restore Me and the rest of the Shatter Me series simultaneously here in the UK. I really look forward to these editions and adding them to my already over stuffed shelves.

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When It All Goes Still – Allison Mullinax – Cover Reveal

Book Cover Reveal

Hey guys! Another cover reveal you ask, so soon? YES because I love them and I love working with Fiery Seas Publishing to bring you awesome book covers!

I first featured Allison on my blog last year when I revealed the cover for her novel Break The Line, which was actually my first ever cover reveal! Break The Line will be featured on my blog again very soon, so keep an eye out for that!

Allison’s newest novel, When It All Goes Still, is for fans of time travel romance. Take a look at the synopsis.

Synopsis Logo

Traveler is arrogant, rebellious, and the most skillful Observation Agent within the division. His refusal to follow the agency rules finally catches up to him and a girl witnesses him time-travel.

Johanna Martin is a witty adventurous runner recovering from the tragic loss of her parents. Confused by the dark-faced stranger and what he was doing at the local state park, she is unable to ignore the effects it has had on her.

With his life and reputation at risk, Traveler must choose…Johanna or his life?


About The Author

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North Alabama native, Allison Mullinax, grew up in the small lake town of Guntersville, AL. She discovered the escapism and addiction of writing at an early age. Today she remains a lover of reading, all things outdoors, and spending time with her husband and three daughters.

Find out more about the author here:
Website
Twitter
Facebook


Cover Reveal

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I think this cover is very fitting for the book, it really tells the story! I love the clock and the stars, really beautiful.

The book is due to be released on May 15th 2018 by Fiery Seas Publishing.

Hope you enjoyed, until next time guys❣

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The Renaissance Club – Rachel Dacus – Spotlight

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Hey guys!

I’ve teamed up with one of my favourite companies again Fiery Seas Publishing, to bring you this spotlight post. Now I was supposed to review the book for the blog tour, but other things came up and life happened, so I thought I’d shout about it instead!

The Renaissance Club is a Romance novel, for fans of time travel fiction, art and history with a magical twist. It’s a gorgeous story about a woman torn between her usual life and the chance of a lifetime with her soul mate.

Here’s the synopsis and some awesome praise for this wonderful book.

Book logoSynopsis

May Gold, college adjunct, often dreams about the subject of her master’s thesis – Gianlorenzo Bernini. In her fantasies she’s in his arms, the wildly adored partner of the man who invented the Baroque.

But in reality, May has just landed in Rome with her teaching colleagues and older boyfriend who is paying her way. She yearns to unleash her passion and creative spirit, and when the floor under the gilded dome of St Peter’s basilica rocks under her feet, she gets her chance. Walking through the veil that appears, she finds herself in the year 1624, staring straight into Bernini’s eyes. Their immediate and powerful attraction grows throughout May’s tour of Italy. And as she continues to meet her ethereal partner, even for brief snatches of time, her creativity and confidence blossom. All the doorways to happiness seem blocked for May-all except the shimmering doorway to Bernini’s world.

May has to choose: stay in her safe but stagnant existence, or take a risk. Will May’s adventure in time ruin her life or lead to a magical new one?


Praise for The Renaissance Club

Enchanting, rich and romantic…a poetic journey through the folds of time. In THE RENAISSANCE CLUB, passion, art, and history come together in this captivating tale of one woman’s quest to discover her true self and the life she’s meant to lead. Rachel Dacus deftly crafts a unique and spellbinding twist to the time-traveling adventure that’s perfect for fans of Susanna Kearsley and Diana Gabaldon. — Kerry Lonsdale, Wall Street Journal Bestselling Author.

The Renaissance Club is a beautifully written story about a woman torn between two worlds—the present and the distant past. This time-travel adventure kept me guessing until the end about which world May would choose, and if that choice would be the right one. Highly recommended for lovers of time travel fiction or anyone looking for a compelling story about a woman trying to find happiness. — Annabelle Costa, Author of The Time Traveler’s Boyfriend.

The Renaissance Club shimmers with beauty, poetry, and art. Author Rachel Dacus sweeps her readers away to Italy with her, lifting the senses with the sights, sounds, and tastes of that stunning country; imparting her deep knowledge of Renaissance and Baroque art while immersing the reader in a gorgeously romantic story. This book is time travel at its best! — Georgina Young-Ellis, author of The Time Mistress Series.


About the Author

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Rachel Dacus is the daughter of a bipolar rocket engineer who blew up a number of missiles during the race-to-space 1950’s. He was also an accomplished painter. Rachel studied at UC Berkeley and has remained in the San Francisco area. Her most recent book, Gods of Water and Air, combines poetry, prose, and a short play on the afterlife of dogs. Other poetry books are Earth Lessons and Femme au Chapeau.

Her interest in Italy was ignited by a course and tour on the Italian Renaissance. She’s been hooked on Italy ever since. Her essay “Venice and the Passion to Nurture” was anthologized in Italy, A Love Story: Women Write About the Italian Experience. When not writing, she raises funds for nonprofit causes and takes walks with her Silky Terrier. She blogs at Rocket Kid Writing.

Find out more about the author:
Website
Facebook
Twitter

The book was released on January 23rd 2018 by Fiery Seas Publishing.

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The Rising Storm – Ceri A Lowe – Cover Reveal

Book Cover Reveal

Hey guys!

I’m back with another cover reveal! This time I have teamed up with the publishing team from Bookouture. They are a fairly small company that specialise in digital publishing and attention to detail. I was honoured to be contacted by them and brought into their fold!

The Rising Storm by Ceri A Lowe, is the first in a gripping YA Dystopian trilogy. It was first published with the title ‘Paradigm’, so this is a very exciting repackaging and launch! Check out the Synopsis.

Book logoSynopsis

What if the end of the world was just the beginning?

15-year-old Alice Davenport was a loner and an outcast before the Storms swept away everything she knew. Saved from the ravaged remains of London by the mysterious and all-powerful Paradigm Industries, her fierce independence and unique skills soon gain her recognition from the highest levels of command. But their plans to rebuild civilisation from scratch mean destroying all remnants of the past – no matter what, or who, gets left behind.

Alice must decide if she will fight for the old world, or the new…

Decades later, 15-year-old Carter Warren is woken from the Catacombs after years of cryonic sleep. He’s determined to do whatever it takes to climb the ranks to Controller General – until he realises the Industry’s control methods have become harsher than ever. The Barricades make sure nothing from the Deadlands can get in to the Community – and no one can get out. And a shocking discovery about his own family causes Carter to question everything he’s ever known…

As Alice becomes entangled in the Industry’s plan for the future, and Carter delves into the secrets of his past, they must make sacrifices which threaten to tear them apart. And both of them are forced to confront an impossible question…

Would you dare to risk it all for the perfect world?


About The Author

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When Ceri isn’t writing, she’s a self-employed project management consultant specialising in financial services. She lives in Bristol, England and has various obsessions including all things Spanish, renovating houses, travelling and her dog, Pablo.

In the last few years she’s won the Exeter Short Story Award, Global Short Stories annual prize, the Flash 500 Award, the Story Star Publishing Prize and the Writers’ Forum Short Story competition.

Find out more about the author here:
Website
Twitter
Facebook


Cover Reveal

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In my opinion this cover is stunning. I love the purple lighting so much and the illustration of the girl has been well executed. This would definitely catch my eye!

The book is set to be released April 4th 2018 by Bookouture.

You can pre-order the book HERE.

Book bloggers rejoice! It’s available to request on Netgalley now!!

I hope you enjoyed, until next time ❣

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The Selection, The Elite, The One – Kiera Cass – Trio Review

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Book logoSynopsis

For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape the life laid out for them since birth. To be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in a palace and compete for the heart of gorgeous Prince Maxon.

But for America Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her. Leaving her home to enter a fierce competition for a crown she doesn’t want. Living in a palace that is constantly threatened by violent rebel attacks.

Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she starts to question all the plans she’s made for herself—and realizes that the life she’s always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.

Book logoMy Rating
★★★★★

Romance, Heart Break, Secrets, Ball Gowns, And One Gorgeous Prince Charming.

Book logoMy Thoughts

I had never heard of The Selection series until December last year, when my good friend Cassie started reading them. She raved about them and that coming from Cassie is something spectacular! So I decided to check the first one, The Selection, out and see for myself ..and then I bought the second and then the third and completely fell in love! I decided to review these as a whole because they’re quite similar and I thought it would be easier to sum up my thoughts of America’s story in one.

The Selection

The beginning of the book gave us lot’s of back story and intel into America’s way of life as a five. Now I was slightly confused with the numbers at first, there was a five here and six there and I found myself saying what?! But it was quickly explained that people were placed into castes, groups if you will, of the lowest being an eight and the best being a one. Each caste has a specific trade, be it artists or labourers or servants. America’s family were all varies artists, painters, musicians etc. I really loathed the castes and felt a lot of sympathy for the lower castes. Each woman can only marry an equal caste or above and America was in love with Aspen, a six, ooooh that’s not good I thought!

I knew straight away that there would be a love triangle and you KNOW I hate them, but I stuck with it because I was enjoying it so much. I got sucked into the story straight away and didn’t come up for air until I was half way through. There was a similar effect with all of the books, with the exception of reading The One in one sitting! IT.WAS.SO.GOOD!!

I admired all of the detail that was included, like the fitting of the dresses and the way they flowed, it was magical and had me wishing for my own Cinderella ball gown.

The reality side to it was really interesting and caught me off guard. The story setting seemed very oldy worldy, but entwined with modern day technology. The Selection was recorded by a camera crew and they had phones and computers. It was really quite a strange mix but it worked so well. I loved the old chivalry and the new language mingled together. It was really fun to read.

I was genuinely crying at one point, you will know it when you read it. I didn’t expect this event to happen and it broke my heart!

America was very laid back to begin with. She didn’t want to compete and was only in The Selection for her family. But that changed by the end and another twist thrown in blew me away.

The Elite

The second book was by far the best for me. The emotions were running wild and America was up and down constantly! She didn’t know her own feelings from her own head. It was a roller coaster ride for sure and that made it all the better!

The love triangle really heated up in this one, which normally I’m not a fan of AT ALL, but I can see why the story needed it and it added a lot of emotion and depth to the overall story.

America did however p#ss me off a lot. She really COULD. NOT. DECIDE. what she wanted and I screamed at her many times in my head.

Prince Maxon is truly a prince charming and I want one of those RIGHT NOW!! What a sweetheart seriously. There was a part when I wanted to cry for him and hold him like a precious child. We most definitely discovered some dark places in Maxon’s heart and I wish I could piece it all together for him!

The One

The One really sealed the deal for me. The final girls were all fighting for Maxon’s affections, but some for very different reasons.

I really enjoyed how the friendships blossomed in this one. We learnt that some people weren’t all they seemed and I had a lot of sympathy and a lot of love for certain characters by the end.

America really grew up in this book and finally knew what she wanted and what she was truly fighting for. If I were her I probably (definitely) would have ripped out some hair and ruined some faces, but this is America’s story and she was as classy and as kind as ever. Her passion for other people and her true affections really shone through and I ended up really loving the girl.

The finale was completely unexpected for sure! That’s all I’m saying.

These books aren’t to be taken too seriously. They are definite fluff reads and I really enjoyed them. They weren’t amazing in ways that other books are, they didn’t make you think or teach you anything, but they didn’t have to. Sometimes we read just to read and enjoy a story and The Selection series definitely did that for me.


I hope you enjoyed my triple review for The Selection series. If you are a fan of fluff Romance’s and Prince’s then definitely pick this series up. But there will be heartbreak, I can guarantee it.

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Monthly Wrap Up – January 2018

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Hey guys! I hope you all had a fantastic first month of the year! January has flown by.

This year I wanted to start posting a few new topics, Monthly Wrap Ups being one of them. I really like the idea of looking back over the month and seeing what awesome (or awful) books I managed to read.

My goal is to read more this year and hopefully move on from my MANY reading slumps. I got through nine books in January! So it seems to be working – fingers crossed!


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Dragon Fever by Elsa Jade.

  • E-book (guilty pleasure)
  • ★★★★☆

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The Selection by Kiera Cass

  • Paperback
  • ★★★★★

The Elite

The Elite by Kiera Cass

  • Paperback
  • ★★★★★

 

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This Boy Is A Rainbow by Sam Payne

  • E-arc copy from author
  • ★★★★★
  • Review

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Angel Of Shadow by D.H Nevins

  • E-arc copy from author
  • ★★★★★
  • Review

Claiming her alien warrior

Claiming Her Alien Warrior by Mina Carter

  • E-book (guilty pleasure)
  • ★★★☆☆

The One

The One by Kiera Cass

  • Paperback
  • ★★★★★

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The Confession by Jo Spain

  • Paperback arc from publisher
  • ★★★★★
  • Review

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Hush Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick

  • Paperback (trade/buy from Megs)
  • ★★★★★

There we go, my January wrap up! I’m really proud of my nine books this month. How many did you manage?

Until next time ❣

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Author Interview – With D.H Nevins

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Hey guys!

Welcome to my first ever author interview – AHHH! You should all know by now how much I adore Danielle and her brilliant Wormwood series. She isn’t only one talented writer but also an incredible person and friend. She holds a special place in my heart and this is why I really wanted my first interview to be all about her and to shine a light on her brilliance!

Danielle was more than happy to oblige (because she’s awesome) and answered my questions with as much depth and heart as I was hoping for.

Enjoy!


 

It's here... Angel of Shadow, January 13, 2018

First of all, thank you so much for this terrific honour, Sarah! I’m truly touched that you invited me to do this author interview. Your first one!!! Okay, here goes…

✾ Your Wormwood series is about angels sent down to eradicate humans. What made you choose angels?

My original idea was aliens, but my husband talked me out of going that route because it was too common. He was right! So I tried to think about other ways the world could end and started researching old stories and folklore about the apocalypse. I ended up being intrigued by religious mythologies about the end of the world and loosely based Wormwood on a melding of these stories. The three main influences are Christian, Hindu and Babylonian. Angels are drawn from the Christian stories. Kali is from Hindu scripture, while Tiamat and Merodach are Babylonian.

✾ How do you come to the decision of axing off a character?

Not easily. I spend a lot of time developing my characters, and it’s painful to pull the plug on them. Sometimes I do it for realism (in a harsh world like the one I’ve created, death is necessary for the story to be believable), and sometimes a certain death is an essential puzzle piece within a grander picture.

✾ Tiamat is an unusual name, where did it come from?

Tiamat is the name of the monster of chaos from ancient Babylonian mythology.

✾ Who is your favourite out of all the Nephilim?

Tiamat. Absolutely Tiamat!

✾ How many unpublished and half-finished books do you have?

None. If I don’t love the idea enough to finish it, then I won’t start it.

✾ What kind of research do you do and how long do you spend researching before beginning a book?

I do most of my research online, but I also contact experts, and I do “field” research. I spent about 6 months collecting information and writing notes before I wrote a single word of Wormwood. I also continued research after I began writing. I’ll look up anything—from background stories about names to the stages of decay after a person dies (yeah, it’s nasty, but necessary). I also do hands-on research, which is my favourite. The absolute best was when I spent a day learning about crossbows. Shooting bolts into targets was so much fun!

✾ How did publishing your first book change your writing process?

I don’t think my writing process really changed after completing book 1. Because I don’t have much time to write, it took me about 5 years to finish Wormwood. I had most of my routines figured out by the time I finished.

✾ What did you edit ‘out’ of Wormwood or Angel of Shadow?

I’ve made quite a few cuts, but the most notable ones are a prologue from Wormwood (Tiamat’s birth and later, his mother’s death), and an entire chapter about Bram from Angel of Shadow. It wasn’t easy to cut them, but Tiamat’s prologue gave too much away about him when I wanted readers to be unsure about trusting his character, and Bram’s chapter never quite fit into the story properly. I loved both of these, however, so I’ll be putting them to good use. I’ll be offering Bram’s chapter to readers on my newsletter list. As for Tiamat’s prologue, I’m considering using that in Wormwood’s prequel, Monster.

✾ Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with good or bad reviews?

I read every word of every review and take it all to heart. So a good review can be inspirational and motivating to me. But a bad one…? Well, what human being would be unmoved by someone publicly trashing their work? It’s soul crushing. I’m very fortunate that I haven’t had many bad reviews, but like any author, it’s happened. After being devastated by a particularly nasty one, a friend gave me some great advice. She had me look up bad reviews on some of my favourite authors—writers who I thought were brilliant. That gave me perspective. A bad review still hurts, but now I remind myself that not every book is for every person. So that helps. As for good reviews, well, they’re like oxygen. They fuel my writing and drive me to deliver the best possible story to my readers. In fact, it was due to the enthusiasm from readers and reviewers (like Sarah here!) that gave me the inspiration I needed to dig in and finish Angel of Shadow.

✾ What is your writing Kryptonite?

Anything! I will wander off and do house work, rewire the electricity and learn to speak Spanish when I should be sitting down to write. Seriously! I’m so bad. Distractions and a need for perseverance both prove to be my biggest writing hurdles.

✾ If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?

Focus!!!

✾ What advice do you have for new writers?

If you’re going to do anything, do it well. Polish your work. Send it off to some beta readers for feedback and then revise. Polish it again. Send it to be edited and then fix what you need to. Don’t ever self-publish or query a sub-par manuscript. An agent or publishing house won’t give you a second chance. Join some author groups (Facebook is a great place) to make connections and hear advice. And finally, enjoy the process. Writing can be hard work, but remind yourself to love what you’re doing. Love your characters. Love your story. That will make all the difference in the world.

✾ Will Tiamat and Kali get a happily ever after ..? (this one is just for me ☺)

Ah, Sarah!!! You know I can’t say!  But… maybe I can hint that you’ll be happy with the outcome of the trilogy. Very happy. I promise I won’t let my readers down. I hope that will do for now! ☺

Congratulations on conducting your first author interview, Sarah! It was an absolute pleasure and an honour to be a part of it. Thank you so much for asking me!!!


Thank you so much Danielle for answering my questions with sincerity and passion! You know I love you! ❤

Don’t forget to check out Angel Of Shadow and the first in the series Wormwood is still FREE!

I hope you enjoyed my very first author interview guys!

Until next time ❣

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The Confession – Jo Spain – Review

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Book logoSynopsis

Late one night a man walks into the luxurious home of disgraced banker Harry McNamara and his wife Julie. The man launches an unspeakably brutal attack on Harry as a horror-struck Julie watches, frozen by fear.

Just an hour later the attacker, JP Carney, has handed himself in to the police. He confesses to beating Harry to death, but JP claims that the assault was not premeditated and that he didn’t know the identity of his victim. With a man as notorious as Harry McNamara, the detectives cannot help wondering, was this really a random act of violence or is it linked to one of Harry’s many sins: corruption, greed, betrayal?

This gripping psychological thriller will have you questioning, who – of Harry, Julie and JP – is really the guilty one? And is Carney’s surrender driven by a guilty conscience or is his confession a calculated move in a deadly game?

Book logoMy Rating
★★★★★

Intense psychological thriller. Jaw dropping secrets. One huge confession.

Book logoMy Thoughts

I literally just put the book down and I’m writing this! I cannot stress enough how f#cking epic this book is!! I am utterly shocked to the core and have literal goosebumps! Ok. Breathe. Let me try to express myself more coherently.

I first went into this book thinking it would be a simple murder mystery. The blurb – ‘you find out who did it on the very first page, on the last page you’ll find out why’ – had me all kinds of intrigued and instantly made me rethink. This isn’t your every day murder mystery, this is truly something else!

From the first line I was hooked. ‘It’s the first drop of my husband’s blood hitting the television screen that will haunt me in the weeks to come – a perfect diagonal splash, each droplet descending like a vivid red tear’ – If that’s the opening line then what would I find lurking in this book?! A whole load of twisted sh#t let me tell you! This isn’t just a murder, this is people’s lives falling apart before your very eyes. Dysfunctional families that aren’t what they seem, unless you look closer and find the truth behind the lies.

As I got deeper and deeper into the book, I learned all manner of dirty little secrets and corrupt goings on. You wouldn’t find this much dirt in a graveyard. The more you dug, the more you found, it just kept coming and I was insatiable, I honestly couldn’t get enough. I was falling deeper into the rabbit hole and couldn’t find my way out! I craved that finale so much, but I didn’t want it to end.

Each time I thought I had it, I knew the secret, I knew the reason why, but I didn’t, it hurtled away from me every time and turned into something else. The amount of twists and turns that I was assaulted by – you honestly would have mistaken me for being in a maze. By the end I was completely gone, THAT ENDING!! God it was so freaking good!!

The characters were incredible. You thought you knew them and had sympathy for their situation and then found out something new and it all changed. The author literally dissected them in front of me! It was all very devious and calculated.

The story was so intense. I was on the edge of my seat most of the time and left with my mouth hanging open at the end of a chapter. The amount of gasps and oooh’s that left my lips was insane. I cried at one point and then felt so much rage the next.

It was utterly gripping and superbly written. If you love a good thriller and are prepared to be shook then I implore you to pick it up!

Just a footnote, there are mentions of alcoholism, self harm and abuse in this book, so just be aware. 

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*I want to thank Jo Spain and Quercus publishing for sending this book my way in return for an honest review*

I hope you enjoyed my review! If you pick up The Confession, please do let me know what you think! I’d honestly love to know.

Find out more about the author and book HERE.

New Voices 2018 Event

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Hello my lovelies!

Yesterday was a very exciting day for me. I was invited to the New Voices book event in Manchester by HeadlineBooks and their lovely publishing team! The event was absolutely superb and I want to thank Georgina especially for looking after us.

You could say I was an events virgin up until this point (although I popped the cherry last night) and I wasn’t 100% sure what to expect. I knew there would be book talk, authors, food and booze. If those aren’t all GREAT reason’s to hop on the train then I don’t know what is!

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*Pornstar Martini*

Me being the anxiety ridden mess that I am, I had to drag my husband along with me, who let’s face it, went for the food and was my book carrying camel for the night (he’s a star)!

I also had to make sure Megs from BetweenThePages would be coming so I could cling to her all night, politely screaming DO NOT LEAVE ME in her ear! It was so good to see her again and we honestly had a blast. We were also joined by Lauren from NorthernPlunder, who I have met briefly and I’m so glad she came along, she is literally so much fun and who can resist her vibrant blue hair! It turned out to be an awesome night, one of the best times I’ve had in a long while and it was these two girls who made all the difference! Thank you for letting me be myself girls ❣

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*photo taken by Lauren, she took the best photo*

The purpose of the event was to highlight the five new wonderful authors and their upcoming debut books. We had a chat with all but one of the authors (the last one was a bit awol) about their book and they were all lovely and genuinely interested in us bloggers. It’s honestly so refreshing to meet people who have the same interests as you and to have a discussion about our passion for books.

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We were presented with a table full of advanced copies of the books and slowly edged our way towards it, eyeing them up. I made the first grab and thus started the domino effect! I managed to bag a copy of all the books and I can’t tell you how happy that makes me!!


Take a closer look at the books and find out a bit more about them:

The Tall Man

The Tall Man by Phoebe Locke 

Release: 14th June 2018

A stunning new voice, introducing her dark and chilling crime-thriller. Appealing to fans of Ruth Ware and Stephen King, it is an unforgettable blend of spine tingling chills and paranormal suspense which will leave you checking the corners of your room at night.

Phoebe is the pseudonym of full-time writer Nicci Cloke. She previously worked at the Faber Academy and hosted London literary salon Speakeasy. She lives and writes in London.

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The Tall Man immediately caught my eye with its stunning cover. I’ve always been interested in the Slender Man mythology, so The Tall Man really interests me and I’m so excited to read it. Phoebe was really lovely to talk to and showed so much love for her book.

The Feed

The Feed by Nick Clark Windo

Release: 25th January 2018

A dystopian page turner. A thought-provoking and utterly addictive read, this is a tense thriller wrapped up in a scarily plausible nightmare. What would you sacrifice to save the world?

Nick was a student on the Faber Academy Writing A Novel course. He studied English Literature at Cambridge and acting at RADA and he now works as a film producer and communications coach. He lives in London with his wife and daughter.

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The Feed really intrigues me, Nick had a chat with us and explained the book in more detail. Everything you are is on the feed, memories, knowledge, dreams, so if it collapses then what do you become? It’s a tiny bit comparable to what would you do without technologically, but on a much larger and more explosive scale. I really look forward to reading it! Nick was also a very entertaining and charismatic man, it was a pleasure to chat with him.

The Perfect GirlfriendThe Perfect Girlfriend by Karen Hamilton

Release: 8th March 2018

The story of one woman’s terrifying mission to take back what’s hers, no matter the cost. As Juliette so frighteningly shows, there is a very thin line between true love and perfect hatred. The tension is high in this one.

Karen spent her childhood in Angola, Zimbabwe, Belgium and Italy and worked as a flight attendant for many years. She is a recent graduate of the Faber Academy and having now put down roots in Hampshire to raise her young family with her husband, she satisfies her wanderlust by exploring the world through writing.

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I love a good thriller and this sounds frighteningly good. Karen talked us through her book and how her inspiration came from being a flight attendant herself. She wanted to write something she was familiar with, thus The Perfect Girlfriend was born. Karen was really enthusiastic about her book and lovely to talk to. I can’t wait to dig into the book!

The Wolf

The Wolf by Leo Carew

Release: 5th April 2018 

If you’re looking for something to fill the Game Of Thrones gap in your life then look no further. Leo is sure to rival David Gemmell and George RR Martin with this masterpiece of epic fantasy. The first in his Under The Northern Sky series.

Leo is a 26-year old Cambridge graduate of Biology Anthropology, currently studying medicine. Apart from writing, his real passion is exploration, which lead him to spend a year living in a tent in High Arctic, where he trained and worked as an Arctic guide.

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Leo was introduced to us as the next George RR Martin, a bold claim, one which I will be happy to test out on reading The Wolf. Leo had a brief chat with us and came off as a very intelligent individual and gentleman. I look forward to seeing what The Wolf truly brings to the book community!

In Our Mad And Furious City

In Our Mad And Furious City by Guy Gunaratne

Release: 3rd May 2018 

A raw and provocative new urban voice in fiction. A vivid and deeply affecting account of city life, the novel follows three young men on a London council estate over 48 hours, when suddenly everything is at stake.

Guy grew up in North West London and has worked as a designer, documentary filmmaker and video journalist covering post-conflict areas around the world, as well as co-founding two technology companies. He was shortlisted for the 4th Estate/Guardian Books B4ME Short Story Prize.

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Unfortunately we didn’t have the chance to chat with Guy, we did see his mustard jumper flitting about the place, so he must have been very sought after. I’ll be honest and say his book interests me the least, just because it’s not my type of thing, but it does sound very compelling to those who are a fan. It’s one of those books that will be very stimulating to the brain.


I just want to thank Headline Books once again for inviting me to such an incredible and refreshing event. It was unbelievable to have been invited and more so to experience it. I will never forget it and look forward to many more events like it in the future!

Head over to HeadlineBooks website to find out more!

Hope you enjoyed, until next time ❣

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This Boy Is A Rainbow – Sam Payne – Review

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Book logoSynopsis

Sam Payne’s debut poetry collection, this boy is a rainbow, tells a raw and touching story of gay love, heartbreak, healing, and empowerment. It is the story of boy who lost love and thought he would never be whole again. Divided into three chapters, it follows his journey as he endures the storm, finds the sun, and becomes the rainbow.

For fans of Rupi Kaur, Amanda Lovelace and Savannah Brown, comes an original collection about love, sexuality, grief, doubt, depression, survival, healing, self-love and empowerment.

Book logoMy Rating
★★★★★

Heart wrenching, raw and truly empowering. Trigger warning for self-harm.

Book logoMy Thoughts

If you know me, you will be aware that I’m not a huge fan of poetry. But after hearing so many amazing things about this book, I had to take Sam up on his offer and read it for myself.

I am utterly stunned by this collection. I don’t often read poetry, but this is unlike anything I’ve ever laid eyes on. The words cut so deep and were so raw, I didn’t expect to response to it so intensely. I could feel every word and every drop of anguish and pain as I was reading. The storm was heart breaking and harrowing to read, but in all the right ways. Sam captured those moments of heartbreak perfectly. Then the light shone and he began to see the splendour of life again in all its beauty. Then through the rainbow he realised that all of his suffering hadn’t been for nought, he was a better person for it and overcame it.

This collection was incredibly empowering and if you’ve ever been through heartbreak then I highly suggest you read this! I think everyone would discover something about themselves and become better because of it.

I also want to highlight the incredible sketches included in the collection, they added so much depth to the collection.

Thank you to Sam Payne for reaching out to me. I’m so glad I read this for myself. You are so brave and I respect you enormously.

*I received a copy of the book in return for an honest review*

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About The Author

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Sam Payne is a poet, writer and creative based in Cambridge, UK. He started posting poetry on Instagram in October 2017 and his debut poetry collection was published in 2018. By sharing his words with the world, he offers a positive message of survival and growth for the wounded heart or bruised soul. When he is not writing, he can be found in a good coffee shop, eating a slice of red velvet cake. You can find out more about the author at bysampayne.com he is also very active on Instragram @bysampayne.


Here are some excerpts from the collection along with some of the beautiful sketches:

 

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