Monday, 29 November 2010

Johnny Be Good by Paige Toon

Johnny Be GoodIf your boss was the hottest rock star on the planet, would you mix business with pleasure?

I'm Meg Stiles. This is my leaving party. And that song we're making a mockery of? That'swritten by one of the biggest rock stars in the world. And I'm moving in with him tomorrow.
Seriously! I am not even joking. Well, maybe I'm misleading you a little bit. You see, I haven't actually met him yet...

No, I'm not a stalker. I'm his new PA. His Personal Assistant. And I am off to La-La Land. Los Angeles. The City of Angels - whatever you want to call it - and I can't bloody believe it!

Celebrity PA to wild boy of rock Johnny Jefferson, Meg's glam new life in sun-drenched LA is a whirlwind of showbiz parties and backstage passes. Cool, calm Christian, in town to write his famous friend's biography, helps keep Meg's feet firmly on the ground. But with Johnny's piercing green eyes and a body Brad Pitt would kill for, how long will it be before she's swept right off them again?
My thoughts: This started off as a really fun read. It reminds of band fanfics that I used to read, because it's got a wish-fulfillment "Oh my god this is awesome and would never happen in real life" thing going on. I was really enjoying it and I loved the characters who were all fun and interesting. There were some nice friendships and relationships happening throughout the story which I really loved.

The book did get a bit repetitive and boring in the middle, a lot of it seemed like unecessary filler.

The ending was quite ambiguous and I'm not sure I liked it. The book was quite long and I felt really involved in the story so for the ending to happen the way it did was so frustrating. It was the sort of cliffhanger that you'd expect at the end of a book in a series, but I have no idea if there's another book after this one.

So yeah, basically I adored this book except for the ending which was a real let down.

Sunday, 28 November 2010

In My Mailbox 24

I hope all my American readers had a lovely Thanksgiving. No such fun for me I'm afraid, here in the UK it was just another day at the office. Not long until Christmas now though.
Anyway, to cheer myself up after hearing about everyone's Thanksgiving dinners, etc. I bought myself some new books.

Glass Houses by Rachel Caine
Dead in the Water by Carola Dunn
The Counterfeit Guest by Rose Melikan

Regeneration by Pat Barker

For Review
Inside Out by Maria V Snyder

That's probably the last bunch of books I'm going to buy myself now until after Christmas. I need to start buying presents for people soon!

Talking of Christmas, there's only a few more days to sign up to my Greetings Card Exchange, please join in, it's going to be fun.

In My Mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren

Saturday, 27 November 2010

My Soul to Lose by Rachel Vincent

My Soul to Lose (Soul Screamers, #0.5)It was supposed to be a fun day, shopping at the mall with her best friend. Then the panic attack started and Kaylee Cavanaugh finds herself screaming, unable to stop. Her secret fears are exposed and it's the worst day of her life.

Until she wakes up in the psychiatric unit.

She tries to convince everyone she's fine--despite the shadows she sees forming around another patient and the urge to scream which comes burbling up again and again. Everyone thinks she's crazy. Everyone except Lydia, that is. Another patient with some special abilities....
My thoughts: This is the prequel to the Soul Screamers series and is available for free at Rachel Vincent's website.
The story begins with Kaylee and her friend shopping at the mall. Kaylee soon begins to have what appears to be some kind of panic attack in the middle of a shop. The next thing she knows, she's waking up in a psychiatric unit where the rest of the story takes place.

To be honest not much really happens in this story, and anything important will be covered in the main books of the series anyway. But this was a good introduction to the series and has made me more excited about reading My Soul to Take, the first full book in the series.

Kaylee seems like an interesting character and I'm looking forward to reading about how she copes with her affliction.

Thursday, 25 November 2010

Beaver Towers by Nigel Hinton

Beaver Towers"Curse you. Curse you!" screamed the witch.
Only Philip can rescue the animals of Beaver Towers, but the forces of evil are strong. He must break into the castle and face terrible danger. Can an ordinary boy fight magic powers?

My thoughts: At around 100 pages this is only a short story. It is aimed at ages 7 and up.
It's the story of a boy, Philip, who gets carried off by his kite and ends up on a magical island inhabited by woodland animals.
The island has been taken over by an evil witch and her magical army of Growlers. In order to banish the witch and save the island Philip must sneak into the castle and find the magic spell book.

Because it's aimed at younger readers the story moved very fast and it seemed like everything was over before it had even began!

It was a cute little story that I'm sure young kids would enjoy, but I think older children might find the story too childish for their liking.

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Alpha by Rachel Vincent

Alpha  (Shifters, #6)Everything is about to change for werecat Faythe when her father is ousted from the council that controls their secret world. And a shocking tragedy jeopardises her future as Alpha of the pride.
Now a rebel on the run, Faythe's biggest fight lies ahead. Old allies from the supernatural world are ready to stand by her side. And weretoms Marc and Jace would give their very souls in the duel for Faythe's heart...
Yet as their enemies draw near Faythe knows that she - and she alone - can lead the pride into what may be their final battle.

My thoughts: This is the final book in the Shifters series and, having not read the previous books, I was a bit worried that I'd be missing information that was important for this book, but it didn't feel like that at all.

Obviously I might have enjoyed the book more if I had followed the series, but it seemed to work just as well on its own as there were enough explanations given for me to get the general gist of what had happened before.

The book did seem to start quite slowly for me as most of the time the characters were planning and thinking about what they should be doing rather than actually doing anything. However, as the book goes on there is a lot more action and it gets quite exciting.

A big part of the story is the love triangle between Faythe and the two toms, Marc and Jace. Having not followed the series I was a bit confused about why and how she could treat them the way she did.

Overall it was an exciting book that was full of action. For someone who usually steers clear of 'urban fantasy' I was pleasantly surprised by how much I liked it.

If, like me, you haven't read the series I'd suggest starting with book one, Stray. The good thing with Alpha being the last book in the series is that you won't have to wait impatiently for the next book!

Check out my Q&A with Rachel Vincent.

I received this book from MIRA in exchange for an honest review.

Sunday, 21 November 2010

In My Mailbox 23

It's Sunday, and you know what that means? Yep, it's time for another In My Mailbox post (In My Mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren). I got two books this week that I'm really excited about.

The first is Johnny Swanson by Eleanor Updale. I read Montmorency by the same author, and I absolutely loved it and have since been trying to get my hands on her other books. This ARC edition popped up on bookmooch so I mooched it, and when it arrived I did a little happy dance when I saw that it's actually signed by the author! 

The second book I got was My Soul To Take by Rachel Vincent which came from the publisher for review. I wasn't expecting this one so was pleasantly surprised when it turned up on my doorstep. I've just read the prequel to this book, which you can read for free at, so now I'm really excited to start this book.

Well, that's it from me, what did you get this week?

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

Whisper of a Witch by Suza Kates

A Choice
Whisper of a WitchBiologist Shauni Miller, as beautiful as she is compassionate, harbours a secret that could alter her life forever. If she chooses to share it.
A Deception
Dr. Michael Black helps Shauni in her time of need but sees more in the raven-haired temptress than she ever meant to reveal. He knows she's hiding something, but then, so is he.
A Prediction
Both Shauni and Michael have a role to play, and decisions to make as a centuries-old prophecy has yet to be fulfilled. Only the fates know if they are meant to be together. Or if one of them has to die.
My thoughts: I won this book in a goodreads giveaway, and I'm really glad that I did otherwise I wouldn't have known about how fantastic it was!
The book begins with a prologue that introduces a whole bunch of women all seemingly heading to the same place. It was a bit confusing to be bombarded with all this information first thing, but it's only a quick introduction, so it's not that bad really. Anyway, after that the story begins properly. We meet Shauni, who has the ability of communicating with animals. This made for some great scenes with her pet cat, Cuileann, who I thought was great! He had such a no-nonsense attitude, just like you'd imagine a cat to be really.
Shauni's ability to communicate with animals means that she inevitably ends up meeting the town vet, Michael Black. A man who's sweet, sexy and loves animals (he might be my ideal man lol). I liked the relationship between Shauni and Michael, although it did seem to happen a bit quickly.

As for the action part of the story, well there's the coven of witches, including Shauni, who are the good guys, and they're up against some demons. There are, of course, some obligatory fight scenes, and it's all very exciting, if a little predictable. The author builds up this thing about Shauni having to face a test of her powers at the end, but when it came it was a bit of an anti-climax.

Overall I really enjoyed the book and I loved the characters. I'm looking forward to reading more books in the series. My only real complaint is that the author seems to have a habit of describing everyone's hair, which got on my nerves after a while.

Check out the author's website at:

Sunday, 14 November 2010

In My Mailbox 22

Just one book again this week. This one is recommended reading for the course that I'm doing and I must admit it does sound quite interesting.
I received this from, it came from Germany which is a change because most of my books just come from elsewhere in the UK.

The Jungle by Upton Sinclair (I think it's funny that the author's first name is the name of the town where I live)
In this powerful book we enter the world of Jurgis Rudkus, a young Lithuanian immigrant who arrives in America filled with dreams of wealth, freedom, and opportunity. And we discover, with him, the astonishing truth about "Packingtown," the busy, flourishing, filthy Chicago stockyards, where new world visions perish in a jungle of human suffering. Upton Sinclair, master of the "muckraking" novel, here explores the workingman's lot at the turn of the century: the backbreaking labour, the injustices of "wage-slavery," the bewildering chaos of urban life.
In My Mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren.

Also, while you're here I'll just mention again my Book Lovers' Greetings Card Exchange, sign ups are still open and everyone can take part. So check out the sign up page for more details. Thanks!

Friday, 12 November 2010

Author Interview - Rachel Vincent

Rachel Vincent is the author of the Shifters series, about a werecat named Faythe Sanders, who is learning to define her own role in her family and fighting to claim a place in her Pride.
Rachel’s young adult urban fantasy series, Soul Screamers, is about a teenage bean sidhe (banshee) trying to balance a normal school experience with the terrifying, hidden world she’s just discovered. My Soul To Take is published in the UK January 2011.

Rachel was kind enough to answer a few questions for me...

1. Are you sad that the Shifters series is at an end?
Yes, and no. I chose to end the series because I wanted it to go out on a high note, at a natural conclusion, rather than to extend indefinitely and suffer series burnout. And I’m happy with that decision, and with how the series ended. But it is a bittersweet moment for me, because I already miss writing Faythe and her dangerous world.

2. What do you enjoy most about writing?
Arguments. Fights. Any intense emotion, like loss or fury.

3. You have pet cats, did their personalities inspire any of your book's characters?
Actually, it was kind of the opposite. My cat Kaci is named after a character from the Shifters series.

4. What would you dress up as for Halloween? A writer on deadline. PJs, slippers, no makeup, dark circles under her eyes, coffee mug in hand. ;)

5. Trick or treat?
Treat, of course!

Check out Rachel Vincent's website at

Sunday, 7 November 2010

In My Mailbox 21

I only got one book this week, which I got from I haven't read any graphic novels before so I thought I'd start with one that I'm fairly sure I'll like.

Serial (CSI, Graphic Novel 1)  From the back cover: In this gripping graphic novel, Las Vegas is terrorised  by a copycat killer who believes he is the legendary Jack the Ripper. His victims are ritualistically murdered then butchered and, like the Victorian archetype, he evades the best efforts of the police to catch him. It's left to Gil Grissom and his CSI team to stop the killer and bring this savage history lesson to an end!

In My Mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren.

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

A Catch of Consequence by Diana Norman

A Catch of ConsequenceMakepeace Burke serves Patriots at her late father's tavern on the Boston waterfront in 1765 and hates the redcoats with a vengeance. But even she can't watch an angry mob drown an Englishman. She rescues him and nurses him back to health-and falls in love.
In Patriot Boston, hers is an unforgivable sin-made worse by the fact that her Englishman turns out be the aristocratic Sir Philip Dapifer. Philip must smuggle Makepeace aboard a ship bound for London and save her life at the expense of the world she knows.

Rich in period detail, bringing the years of colonial rebellion to vivid life, A Catch of Consequence is a stylish novel of Boston and England, and of a woman who defies convention in both worlds.
My thoughts: The story starts off in 1700's Boston, USA but soon moves to England. I thought the main character, Makepeace was excellent. She came across as a strong and independent woman. When she first arrives in England she has to try and fit into the upper class society of London and also has to deal with Sir Philip's ex-wife. But then tragedy strikes and she must move to Northumberland to start another new life. For me this was the most enjoyable part of the story, with a little bit of drama and some romance thrown in too.
This was a fantastic historical fiction that really made me feel like I was right there. I loved this book and will be looking out for more books from this author.

Monday, 1 November 2010

Monthly Round-Up - October 2010

I can't believe it's November already! It seems like only yesterday it was Christmas last year when I had a broken arm.
I didn't get a lot of reading done in October, I seem to have got sucked into a routine of getting up, going to work, coming home, eating my dinner then going to bed. I think the fact that it's always dark and gloomy outside doesn't help much.

October news
I launched the Greetings Card Exchange, other than that not much has happened around here.

Books finished in October: None! But I did start reading Alpha by Rachel Vincent.

Books reviewed in October:
Spy Glass by Maria V. Snyder
Entangled by Cat Clarke

Books received in October: 10
Added to wishlist:  0

What's coming up in November?
I'll be taking part in NaNoWriMo, but hope to still be blogging throughout the month. Sign ups for the Greetings Card Exchange will continue. Hopefully I might get some reading done in between everything else!