Letterbox Love #38

Letterbox Love is a meme hosted by Lynsey of Narratively Speaking whereby book lovers can exhibit the books they received this week.

This week I received some awesome books for review! And I squeezed in a library visit too.  

Received for Review:     

Stray by Monica Hesse

Tribute by Ellen Renner

Blindsided by Natalie Whipple

Leopold Blue by Rosie Rowell

Finding Jennifer Jones by Anne Cassidy

Thanks to Hot Key Books for sending this amazing selection! 2014 is gonna have some awesome books. 

Twinmaker by Sean Williams

Thanks to Electric Monkey for sending over this stunning finished copy.

Library: 

Take Two by Meg Cabot

Angelfall by Susan Ee

What did you receive this week? Have you read any of my books and do you think it should be at the top or the bottom of my to read pile?  I’d love to hear from you! 

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Book Review: The Bunker Diary

The Bunker DiaryThe Bunker Diary

by Kevin Brooks

Published: March 2013 by Penguin 

Version: Paperback from library

Rating: 3 sofas

Room meets Lord of the Flies, The Bunker Diary is award-winning, young adult writer Kevin Brooks’s pulse-pounding exploration of what happens when your worst nightmare comes true – and how will you survive?
I can’t believe I fell for it.
It was still dark when I woke up this morning.
As soon as my eyes opened I knew where I was.
A low-ceilinged rectangular building made entirely of whitewashed concrete.
There are six little rooms along the main corridor.
There are no windows. No doors. The lift is the only way in or out.
What’s he going to do to me?
What am I going to do?
If I’m right, the lift will come down in five minutes.
It did. Only this time it wasn’t empty . . .

I knew this book was going to be strange as soon as I heard about it. Kevin Brooks was one of my favourite writers as a young teenager, as his writing is just so emotive. So I went into The Bunker Diary with nervous anticipation. And the cover and tagline are completely intriguing! 

Linus wakes up in a locked bunker-like building, with no exit; only a lift. It appears he has been abducted. But by who? And why? Why him, what for? SO MANY questions surround this story. In the beginning it was a definite page turner as I wanted to find out more about Linus and how he was going to get out of the bunker. I really felt Linus’ powerless feelings. The book is written in diary format from Linus’ point of view, and it helps to dig deep into his emotions.

All the characters are really well developed in the book. Each one is quite different, and trying to figure out the connection between them was difficult. They all responded to the situation in separate ways; Linus tries to think of ways to escape, while others are in denial. I enjoyed this aspect of the book, as it made me think about what it takes for people to survive these sorts of ordeals. To know that this could have been based on a true story made it feel very raw. 

Towards the end of the book I could sense we were coming towards the climax, and was eager to discover how it was going to wrap up. I wanted to know who the abducter was and why he had taken these (seemingly) random six people and kept them in a bunker. 

The ending was just unbelievable. It left me turning the blank pages at the end, and wondering where the rest was. I had to go back and read the last couple of pages to actually confirm that the book did actually end like that. It completely shocked me, and probably left me with my jaw hanging open for quite some time. Not really suited to a YA audience, it was actually quite sickening. 

Gripping and unique, the plotline sucked me in. I loved the emotive writing but I just felt the ending was entirely WRONG. For that reason, I have to give The Bunker Diary 3 sofas

Book Review: Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares

Dash & Lily's Book of DaresDash & Lily’s Book of Dares

by David Levithan and Rachel Cohn

Published: 5th October 2012 by Mira Ink

Version: Paperback from library

Rating: 4 sofas

“I’ve left some clues for you.
If you want them, turn the page.
If you don’t, put the book back on the shelf, please.”

So begins the latest whirlwind romance from the bestselling authors ofNick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist. Lily has left a red notebook full of challenges on a favorite bookstore shelf, waiting for just the right guy to come along and accept its dares. But is Dash that right guy? Or are Dash and Lily only destined to trade dares, dreams, and desires in the notebook they pass back and forth at locations across New York? Could their in-person selves possibly connect as well as their notebook versions? Or will they be a comic mismatch of disastrous proportions?

Rachel Cohn and David Levithan have written a love story that will have readers perusing bookstore shelves, looking and longing for a love (and a red notebook) of their own.

I wanted to read Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares as part of my David Levithan readathon, so I was thrilled when I saw it sitting on the library shelf (not my local). I was quite surprised how short it was, but heard lots of good things about the romance in it. 

It all begins when Dash discovers a notebook in his local bookshop, that leaves him a set of clues relating to certain books.  He decides to follow the instructions, but also to leave some clues of his own. Pretty soon Dash and Lily are corresponding through the notebook, sending each other to all sorts of places to do weird tasks. 

I must admit I found this portion of the book UTTERLY ADORABLE. Why can’t some cute guy leave me notes in my favourite bookshop?! (FYI, if you’re out there, its probably Waterstones in Bluewater or Piccadilly. Just in case) And to chase around the city following dares left in a notebook…. I adore the pre-Christmas period, where everyone is busy and festive, and this sounds like a perfect dream to me! It makes me want to take risks and be adventurous and maybe leave some notes of my own….. 

Lily was a bit desperate at times, but I did feel sorry for her too. All she wanted was a bit of excitement and somebody to like her for herself, and I think we all want that on some level. I had a bit of a love/hate relationship with Dash, but I think thats just a boy thing. And he likes books. And he gave Lily one of the best experiences ever (not in a gross way!). So for that, he has my heart. 

There are some really adorable moments in this book and it definitely bought a smile to my face. I would love to reread this around Christmas time. I just wish it was longer! I wanted more dares, more romance, more angst, just MORE. 4 sofas!  

“There are just lots of possibilities in the world…I need to keep my mind open for what could happen and not decide that the world is hopeless if what I want to happen doesn’t happen. Because something else great might happen in between.”

“The important people in our lives leave imprints. They may stay or go in the physical realm, but they are always there in your heart, because they helped form your heart. There’s no getting over that.” 

Letterbox Love #29

Letterbox Love is a meme hosted by Lynsey of Narratively Speaking whereby book lovers can exhibit the books they received this week.

This week has been so hectic for me but I’ve managed to squeeze in buying a few books…     

Bought:

Soulmates by Holly Bourne

The Fall of Five by Pittacus Lore

Don’t Judge A Girl By Her Cover by Ally Carter

The Road of the Dead by Kevin Brooks

The Ask and the Answer by Patrick Ness

Monsters of Men by Patrick Ness

Flyaway by Lucy Christopher

There is No Dog by Meg Rosoff

From Where I Stand by Tabitha Suzuma

Close My Eyes by Sophie McKenzie

Ebooks:

If You Could Be Mine by Sara Farizan

Thanks very much to Algonquin Books and Netgalley.

Keeping Her by Cora Carmack

Yay! Thanks Random House and Netgalley for this, I will sneak it in my reading list soon!

Library:

How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff

 Keeping Her (Losing It #1.5)       If You Could Be Mine

What did you receive this week? Have you read any of my books and do you think it should be at the top or the bottom of my to read pile?  I’d love to hear from you! 

Letterbox Love #28

Letterbox Love is a meme hosted by Lynsey of Narratively Speaking whereby book lovers can exhibit the books they received this week.

I hope everyone has had an awesome week. This week I created an impromptu readathon and went to the library!    

 Received for Review:

Boy Meets Boy by David Levithan (x2)

Are We There Yet? by David Levithan (x2)

Thanks very much to Harper Collins for sending me these beautiful reprints. I’ve got duplicates as well which I will probably get signed and give away soon. 

Every Day by David Levithan

Thanks to Egmont for another copy of this! Will go in my giveaway pile.

More Than This by Patrick Ness

Hello Darkness by Anthony McGowan

BAHHHH MORE THAN THIS! I am so excited for this title. Huge huge thanks to Walker for these lovelies. 

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black

Thanks to Indigo for this new vampire novel! Gorgeous cover.

P1060650

Bought:

After Iris by Natasha Farrant

Severed Heads, Broken Hearts by Robyn Schneider

Gifted:

Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist by David Levithan and Rachel Cohn

Thanks very much to Rebekah from Reflections of a Bookworm!

Library:

Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares by David Levithan and Rachel Cohn

The Bunker Diary by Kevin Brooks

Rainbow Boys by Alex Sanchez

P1060651 

What did you receive this week? Have you read any of my books and do you think it should be at the top or the bottom of my to read pile?  I’d love to hear from you! 

Book Review: Confessions of a Murder Suspect

Confessions of a Murder Suspect (Confessions, #1)Confessions of a Murder Suspect

by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro

Published: September 2012 by Arrow

Version: Hardback from library

Rating: 2 sofas

James Patterson returns to the genre that made him famous with a thrilling teen detective series about the mysterious and magnificently wealthy Angel family . . . and the dark secrets they’re keeping from one another.

On the night Malcolm and Maud Angel are murdered, Tandy Angel knows just three things: 1) She was the last person to see her parents alive. 2) The police have no suspects besides Tandy and her three siblings. 3) She can’t trust anyone—maybe not even herself. Having grown up under Malcolm and Maud’s intense perfectionist demands, no child comes away undamaged. Tandy decides that she will have to clear the family name, but digging deeper into her powerful parents’ affairs is a dangerous-and revealing-game. Who knows what the Angels are truly capable of?

I remember when I first picked up James Patterson’s Maximum Ride series, how excited I was that he was writing YA books. As one of the wealthiest authors in the world, he is known for producing (writing is debatable) over 150 books. Although the last books went a bit downhill, I did really enjoy the series, and loved how quickly I soared through them. 

So imagine my delight when I discovered he was writing a new YA book. Alas, it was not meant to be. Mr Patterson is very clever in that many people will buy a book just because his name is on the cover. A lot of others will pick this up for the intriguing title, cool cover or interesting blurb. But you have been duped.

Firstly, the print in this book is so large, it is probably only about 100 pages or so in a normal book. I do like the short chapters, but here it just seems an excuse to use another page. As a result, the story or plot is virtually nonexistent. It is basically a look into Tandy’s family history to try and detect who may have killer her parents. We see things from Tandy’s perspective and her memories are often quite random and disjointed from the rest of the story. I found this to be more and more annoying throughout the book. I was starting to hope that Tandy was the killer, so that she would either get jailed or die at the end of the book. 

All the Angel family (can you not pick a different name per series?!) have “enhanced” powers. Although this trait is itself quite interesting, it makes for a lot of similar characters to his Maximum Ride series. And herein lies the problem; from the cover, the book looks really intriguing. A teenage murder suspect? And a girl? But alas, the story is so predictable that there is no suspense and eager turning of pages. I did finish this book, but only because it was so short. 

Overall I think the story lacked any real substance. The main character was irritating, and the memories made for a disjointed storyline. It was quite predictable, I shall be really disappointed if it gets turned into a series. Unfortunately I have to say the best thing about this book is the cover. 2 sofas! 

Letterbox Love #25

Letterbox Love is a meme hosted by Lynsey of Narratively Speaking whereby book lovers can exhibit the books they received this week.

I’m going to try and post a weekly book haul so that I don’t have as many to talk about at once! We’ll see how that goes… 

 

Received for Review:

Every Day by David Levithan 

Thanks very much Egmont! I can’t wait to meet David in October and so excited for this.

Vivian Versus the Apocalypse by Katie Coyle

The Rig by Joe Ducie

Friday Brown by Vikki Wakefield

The Elites by Natasha Ngan

THE ELITES! Thank you SO much to Hot Key Books for all these pretties! I’ve heard amazing things about the Elites so far, and all the others look amazing too 😀 

Bought:

The One That Got Away by Lucy Dawson

Solace of the Road by Siobhan Dowd

Sweet Little Lies by Lauren Conrad

Gloss by Marilyn Kaye

Freebies:

I’d Tell You I Love You, But Then I’d Have To Kill You by Ally Carter (free with Shout magazine)

Library:

What Have I Done? by Amanda Prowse

Ebooks: 

The Name On Your Wrist

The Name on Your Wrist by Helen Hiorns. Thanks to Random House and Netgalley. This is the winner of their Movellas Award and I’ve been told it is absolutely amazing.  

 

What did you receive this week? Have you read any of my books and do you think it should be at the top or the bottom of my to read pile?  How do you like a book haul vlog as opposed to an actual post? I’d love to hear from you!