Monday, 23 January 2012

Muse: Rebecca Lim

There’s something very wrong with me,

When I wake up I could be anyone...

An Angel in exile

Caught between lives

…and loves

Series: Mercy, Exile, Muse, Fury(coming May 2012)

Mercy has awoken again this time in Milan and in the body of spoilt Irina; international supermodel / train wreck and Mercy herself is not doing much better. Still searching for her love, her identity and answers; things this time around are much more different for Mercy remembers. Torn between her love for the mortal boy Ryan and the love she has always craved from Luc, Mercy will seek and find the answers to the questions she’s held for centuries. But the more Mercy learns the more she questions who she is and what Luc’s true intentions are. Ultimately it will all come down to a celestial battle where Mercy must choose a side and a love. Sacrifices will be made but for whom will Mercy make the greatest sacrifice of all and just who will survive…
Muse, much like predecessors Mercy and Exile, will far from disappoint. Instead it will claw into the reader and captivate you till the very last page (cliff-hanger alert). Lim has introduced a new kind of Angel that is both familiar as the tales we’ve heard yet enthralling and original. Mercy as a character is vulnerable yet strong and independent; rare for a female protagonists. Secondary characters such as Luc and Ryan are too more that just your typical love interests; each is defined and unique. The characters, setting and plotlines will enamour the reader and create an edge of your seat, enticing read. I don’t think I can praise this brilliant series enough and what makes it even better is it is by an Aussie author. I read this book in one day (just how addictive it was) and now eagerly anticipate the final novel in the series Fury which comes out early next year. Lim creates a wonderfully magical and sinister world that one cannot help but enjoy. With a concoction of romance, betrayal, mystery and drama Muse is a standout novel for the YA genre and one you’d be crazy to bypass.

Courtney :)

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

The Fault in Our Stars

Wow! It's not often that you finish a book and have a feeling that you just had an amazing experience.  I felt it when I read The Book Thief by Markus Zusak and last night I felt it again as I read The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. Green's previous books An Abundance of Katherines, Looking for Alaska, Paper Towns and Will Grayson Will Grayson have always made me think that he has an amazing ability to live in the body's of teenagers, understanding their fears, their fun, their humour, their sadness, their adventure, and all their complexities.  In The Fault in Our Stars (TFIOS) his main character 16 year old Hazel is living with terminal cancer and meets Augustus at the kids with cancer support group.  Having experienced life and death with a terminal cancer sufferer I found the characters to be so realistic - when facing death there is no right or wrong way to behave - and in this book the characters tackle life, death and love in differing ways.

The title taken from Shakespeare's  Julius Caesar "The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, But in ourselves, that we are underlings." leads to the lifelong questions of  How will I be remembered? Does my life, and will my death, have meaning? These questions are all tackled by the characters in how they live and love, how they live in the shadow of death and how that shadow effects their relationships with their families and each other.

To say I was moved by The Fault in Our Stars is an understatement.  To say that I am so proud of John Green and his characters is an understatment.  I recommend this book not only to teens, but to your parents as well.

I can understand why Green has such a loyal following of Nerdfighters with catchcry's like DFTBA (Don't Forget to be Awesome) , and  followers on his website, twitter, facebook and youtube channel I can now understand why my daughter preordered a copy of TFIOS as Green had signed 150,000 books with a variety of Sharpie colors. I can understand how TFIOS  rose to number 1 on the Amazon and Barnes and Noble bestseller lists prior to the books release. 

In an interview about Looking for Alaska, Green said 
" The truth is that in our lives we are all going to encounter questions that should be answered, that deserve to be answered, and yet prove unanswerable. Can we find meaning to life without those answers? Can we find a way to acknowledge the reality (and injustice) of suffering without giving in to hopelessness?".

No spoilers here - just read The Fault in Our Stars and tell me what YOU think!

Monday, 16 January 2012


YELLOWCAKE by Margo Lanagon

Think you are too old for fairy tales? Then you haven’t read Margo Lanagon’s dark take on the traditional.

She offers up stories that make you cringe, make you think, make you know that something… somewhere… is terribly wrong.

Her book ,‘Yellowcake’ is another great collection of short stories.  Once you have read ‘The Golden Shroud’ you will reconsider the tale of Rapunzel. Read ‘Night of the Firstlings’ and you will rethink the stories told in the Bible.

Lanagon has a masterful way with words. She weaves them into fabrics we have never seen, creates worlds we have never stepped upon; yet her stories have an element of truth in them. They are sad and weighted, dark and heartbreaking.

Totally recommended if you like your short stories with a touch of darkness.

Vicki @ Pak.

Friday, 13 January 2012

Evermore by Alyson Noël

Evermore is the first book in the 'Immortals' series, about a girl called Ever. Ever has a near death experience which tragically claims the lives of her parents and sisters. She wakes up in hospital with mind reading powers and psychic abilities (she can see peoples auras and the ghost of her dead younger sister).

Ever has to move schools, where she is branded a freak beacuse she shrinks away from human contact. She then meets the charming, handsome Damen and falls deeply in love. When she is around Damen Ever can silence the the overwhelming thoughts of those around her, and she can't read his mind. Problem is, Damen seems a little weird. He is always sipping from a bottle of red drink and seems to know just what Ever is thinking, and he can do things that normal people can't do. Sound familiar? Twilight* maybe?

Please comment below if you liked this book, because I did not. The characters were not likable, Ever seemed pretty dumb to me and her friends were annoying. Damen, who is supposed to be the charming hero, acts just like a confused teenage boy. I did, however, love the character Reily, the ghost of Ever's dead sister, she was so cute, and sister-like. I tried starting on book two, to give it another chance, but just couldn't continue. Does anyone agree?


* For the record, I love Twilight :)

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