Monday, December 22, 2014

The Chrysalids

"If you run away from a thing just
because you don't like it, you don't
like what you find either."
Title: The Chrysalids

Author: John Wyndham

First Published: 1955

Series: Stand-alone

Genre: Classic, Dystopia

Available As: Paperback, hardcover, ebook

My Rating: 7.5/10

Watch thou for the mutant! These phrases has stuck with David all his life. Anyone found with a deviation must be killed. At first, David believes in this saying, but as the years go by, he slowly by slowly loses his faith. He just doesn't understand! What makes them so different, just because of a small physical difference? Until David realises he also has a
deviation. And everything is now at stake.

Reading The Chrysalids was like a taste of fresh dystopia. It was told a bit differently from the dystopian books we read nowadays. It is almost scary how much Wyndham was close to predicting how our world is like now.

David started off as a young, naive boy in the beginning. He blindly accepted everything that was happening, even when he knew it was wrong. Throughout the book, he slowly opens his mind more and more to the world around him, and he finally understands how it is wrong to live the way he has lived all his life.

One thing irked me in the book though. Why does David have to fall in love with Rosalind? And vice versa? But I guess, love is love and there is no controlling it.

The ending is an open ending. We never really find out what happens to all the characters (do we ever?), and all we know is that most of them will get their happy ending. This was a really good dystopian book, written about half a century ago. Does it remind us of our world today? In some ways, it does. These older dystopian books aren't really just for enjoyment (although it can be), but rather some kind of foreshadowing, if we're assuming our whole existence is like a book. Foreshadowing for a future that is yet to come.

Winter Reads

Winter is here! And it's the perfect time to find a great book to snuggle and read with. A cup of hot chocolate anyone? Cookies? Gingerbread cookies? Or... Starbucks? Tea?

Enough about food. What about the books?!

Here in this little post, I'll give you a small list of my all-time favourite books to read during the winter, and maybe you would like to check them out! Or maybe tell me your favourite winter books, if you have any!

Let's begin.

1. Let It Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson and Lauren Myracle. Who doesn't love this book for Christmas-y feels? It is a winter romance anyways. Three little stories about different people. But they all link together in the end! It's really cute, and I love how they seem to intertwine and end. It's a really sweet story; what can you expect from these three authors? They're the best!

2. Girl Online by Zoe Sugg. It's a cute love story, but it's not only about love. It's also about life, facing fears, and standing up for what's right. Who doesn't love a story with so many different themes? Oh yeah, the main character Penny is also a kind girl, and it's hard not to like her.

3. Sweet Honey by Cathy Cassidy. It's actually the fifth book in the Chocolate Box Girls series, but who cares? Although, it may be better if you read the first few books in the series. It's great, really. It's about Honey turning over a new leaf, but of course, the past never really goes away. Like they say!

4. My True Love Gave To Me, which is a collection of 12 short stories. The stories are very cute, and the short stories are written by famous romance authors! The book was put together by Stephanie Perkins, and it's really pretty.

Are there more? Yeah! Of course! They're tons of books to read over the winter, and here are just some suggestions. If you have any recommendations, feel free to just comment!

Stay warm, and read a book!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Girl Online

"Every time you post something online
you have a choice."
Title: Girl Online

Author: Zoe Sugg (A.K.A Zoella)

First Published: 2014

Series: Stand alone

Available As: Hardcover

My Rating: 8.5/10

Under the pseudonym 'Girl Online', Penny writes all about her life, her troubles, her happiness on her anonymous blog. It was just her way of escaping her life and be herself. She was able to write all her feelings without the fear of being found out. Except for her best friend Elliot, of course. He was the only one who knew about her blog.

When her parents bring Penny to America to help with organising a wedding, she meets the charming, mysterious, sweet Noah. The guy that seems to be her soulmate, her first love. Life just seemed to get a lot better in a couple of days. And of course, she blogs about this Brooklyn Boy. But, what if her sweet relationship just got a whole lot sour?

Girl Online was such a great book about facing your fears and first love. Penny was an awkward, down-to-earth girl, who is likeable. She learned to face her fears and conquer them through many different ways, thanks to the support of her family and friends. She's quiet, shy, but also stands up for what's right. And this book can teach you so much.
This here is Penny's tent. Keep out!
... unless your name is Noah.

Girl Online is Zoe's first novel, and it was written perfectly. It had those moments where you would just want to melt, cry or laugh at the same time. It was very mature, and told exactly from the perspective of a teenage girl. Overall, it was a really good read, and it is perfect for a warm winter day.

Why winter? I don't know. Probably because I read this during winter. By the way, don't you wish for a tent with fairy lights? How beautiful would that be?

Saturday, October 11, 2014


"Everyone deserves something good
in their life. At least once."
Title: Once

Author: Morris Gleitzman

First Published: 2005

Series: Once Series

Genre: Historical Fiction

Available As: Paperback, Hardcover, Audiobook, Ebook

My Rating: 9/10

Felix is a 10 year old Polish boy living in World War II. He was originally from an orphanage where his parents dropped him off when he was little. One day in the orphanage, Felix witnesses police burning all the books and he is intrigued why they would do that. He then runs away in search of his parents, to find that the world isn't what it seemed.

World War II is a brutal war fought for many years. Told from the events from the Holocaust, Felix was on the run from the Nazis and struggling to survive. Being Jewish, he knew that if he was ever caught, he would never make it back alive. Journeying through the co
untry, he is joined by a girl called Zelda and they both made their way to the city, where they meet some friends in hiding.

Once is told from Felix's point of view, where he is struggling to survive and understand the world for it isn't as he once knew it. In the city, he meets Barney, a Jewish dentist, who is taking care of children in hiding. Through most of the book, Felix believes that his parents are alive and waiting for him to bring him home, until he witnesses the actual world. But being with these people, Felix finally understands the true danger of the world.

This book is a very sad yet heart-warming book. It gives of the aura of hope and tragedy. Like, even though things are horrible and it couldn't get any worse, there is still some good out there. Also, Felix is filled with hope for a better life for him and his friends. He keeps his hope until the end. When things were bleak, he would tell stories to the children in hiding and bring some happiness and laughter to their lives.

This book is a beautiful book and is wonderfully written. It was quite sad, but it's a great read.


Title: Checkmate
"If you're naive- which means immature,
inexperienced or a bit
thick- you get eaten alive."

Author: Malorie Blackman

First Published: 2005

Series: Noughts & Crosses Sequence, followed by Double Cross

Available As: Paperback, ebook

My Rating: 8/10

Callie Rose, daughter of Sephy and Callum, has grown up. She's 16, and dealing with a stressful life. But she's not as normal as the average teenage girl. She was secretly helping the Liberation Militia and training to be a bomber with the help of her uncle, Jude. Also piled on her plate is her love life troubles. Such a confusing life for a teenage girl.

Checkmate is told in different perspectives, ranging from Callie Rose's, Sephy's, Jude's, Meggie's, and Jasmine's. All the characters are in conflict with another. Callie Rose is on bad terms with her mother, Sephy. Their relationship had gone downhill ever since Callie found out that Sephy had been lying to her about her father's true identity. Jasmine is determined to put an end to Jude's reign. Violence and pain is filled in these pages.

Callie Rose takes after both Sephy and Callum. She's sweet, loving, and a fighter. She knows what's right, although she doesn't realise this until she's older. However, she's blinded by her fantasies most of the time to realise what is going on in the real world.

Checkmate is a game position in chess, the final move. It suits the book very well. It's practically a game for the characters. Especially for Jude. To solve their conflicts and to win at the same time. Unfortunately, not everyone can have a happy ending; not everyone can win.

For every game, there has to be someone who wins, and someone who loses

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Dorothy Must Die

Title: Dorothy Must Die
"Be brave. Be angry. Don't trust anyone."

Author: Danielle Page

First Published: 2014

Series: Dorothy Must Die Series, followed by No Place Like Oz (the prequel)

Genre: YA, Fantasy

Available As: Paperback, ebook, audio book

My Rating: 8/10

Amy Gunn is a normal girl living in Kansas, until a tornado takes her away to this weird place called Oz. When she arrives, it's not like the Oz in the stories, it's all twisted and cruel. Ruled by Princess Dorothy, the place of Oz is now under her rule.

The Order of the Wicked is a secret organisation against Dorothy's rule. They recruit Amy to work for them, telling her to go undercover into Dorothy's palace to break down her kingdom and finally, kill her. It's not as easy as it seems.

I love this story! It's a twist on the famous story The Wizard of Oz. It twists it around that everyone that was originally good is bad, and every character who was originally bad, is good. Thus, the Order of the Wicked. Amy is working with the Order of the Wicked, and learns to use magic. I wish that something more would happen between her and Nox! It would've been cute.

The suspense in this novel is just so thick, it could drown a fish. You just have to keep reading, you just have to know what happens next! Danger is everywhere, and there are just some moments where you get a heart attack because you think Amy's been caught.

What else does this story remind me of? You know Once Upon A Time? The TV show? Well, that TV show plays on fairytales and changes it around. Just like in Dorothy Must Die, the fairytale has been twisted around into something you wouldn't expect.

I absolutely love this book, and I hate the fact that it ends with such a cliffhanger! But, nonetheless, it's a thrilling book and is really worth the read!

Knife Edge

Title: Knife Edge
"When did we stop being people, being human?"

Author: Malorie Blackman

First Published: 2003

Series: Noughts & Crosses Sequence, followed by Checkmate

Available As: Paperback, ebook

My Rating: 8/10

Following the events of Noughts & Crosses, Sephy is trying her best to raise Callie Rose alone, with little to no help. Until Meggie offers to let Sephy move in with her so Meggie could help Sephy cope.

In the meantime, Jude is running from the police. He's filled with hate and grief for Callum. His hatred for Crosses is stronger than ever. He's determined to kill.

Sephy is so different from the old her in Noughts & Crosses. She's still grieving, and struggling to take care of her daughter single-handedly. Then there's all these other Crosses who are scorning her, telling her that she is a 'blanker-lover', someone who loves Noughts. Everyone disapproves of her mixed-race daughter and it's hard on Sephy. She also joins a band as the lead singer, and she runs into a lot of people in clubs. She's the only Cross in the band, which was taken badly by the others.

Jude on the other hand, is struggling to deal with his anger. He meets a Cross girl called Cara, who he falls slightly in love with, but freaks out when he finds out. Cara was completely the opposite of what Jude saw Crosses as, and it scared him.

Knife Edge is split into 4 different parts: Red, Orange, Yellow, Green. Each symbolises a part in the book. At first, it starts with Red, meaning that hate, anger and grief is everywhere. It's also like a traffic light; everyone is stuck where they are- they won't move on. The the story slowly moves on, and finally in Green, the story reaches it's peak and it finishes.

The tone of Knife Edge is different from Noughts & Crosses, especially because this book is more harsh and filled with more remorse and rage. It's a great sequel to Noughts & Crosses and it's a fantastic read.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Noughts & Crosses

"Things go unsaid soon get forgotten"
Title: Noughts & Crosses

Author: Malorie Blackman

First Published: 2001

Series: The Noughts & Crosses Sequence, followed by Knife Edge

Available As: Paperback, ebook

My Rating: 8/10

The world is different than the way it is today. It's like it's gone back in time, with a twist. Society is separated into two: Noughts and Crosses. The Crosses are superior, while the Noughts are inferior. What's their key difference? Skin colour. The Crosses are black, while the Noughts are white.

Callum is a Nought, living in a world that despises his race. Sephy is a Cross, the daughter of one of the richest and most powerful man in the country. Callum and Sephy have been best friends since they were children, and their relationship starts to grow into something more. But their society is a tough one, one that is bent on keeping the two apart.

I loved the idea of the story, don't get me wrong! I don't support racism, but the idea was just so interesting on paper and words. It's a complete twist on history, where everything is reversed. The white people are hated on, the black people are powerful.

Callum and Sephy's relationship was like a light switch. They were on and off at times, sometimes they were mad at each other and stayed away from one another. At other times, they were best buddies and shared secrets.

Callum is a strong-willed guy who does what he thinks is right. He's also quite protective over Sephy, and wants what's best for her. A sweet guy, who made a couple of mistakes. Sephy? She's the kind of girl that thinks before she acts (most of the time).

The ending was just painful. It was just so sad! And it just made me freak out. I just had to read the next book! Though I was a bit disappointed a certain someone's POV will never appear again. (Cue the waterworks!)

This book is an amazing book, and it deals with all kinds of things. Racism, love, friendship, standing up for what's right. The story will be sure to stick in my heart for a long time.

Just One Day

"Anything can happen in just one day " 
Title: Just One Day

Author: Gayle Forman

First Published: 2013

Series: Followed by Just One Year

Genre: YA, Romance, Contemporary

Available As: Paperback, ebook

My Rating: 8.5/10

Allyson is ready to go on her trip to Europe! She and her friends, are touring around Europe, visiting different places, meeting new people. The day Allyson is set to leave, she meets Willem, a charming, mysterious actor who invites her to spend a day in Paris with him. In the spur of the moment, Allyson says yes and they leave to Paris together. A lot can happen in just one day but is it worth it?

At first, Allyson struck me as a sweet, good girl, until she met Willem. I found it interesting when Allyson called herself Lulu when she and Willem met for the first time. Once she met Willem, Allyson was ready to go on an adventure, and be a new her. Sort of like Mia in If I Stay, when she dresses up as the punk chick for Halloween? I'm beginning to think in Gayle Forman's books, the girl will always have a small change in character, even if it's only for a while.

Spoilers Below! Sorry!

But once Willem left Allyson in the middle of the night, it was like in that moment (and after), the old Allyson had disappeared. She's still nice, but a bit more closed off from others. And she doesn't care what her mother thinks anymore. She spends most of her time trying to find Willem for the rest of the book, determined to figure out what really happened. I loved how she finally went back to Paris and re-met everyone. I thought it was really cool, how it went back right where it started. 

Spoilers Over. Yay!

Willem obviously means a lot to Allyson and vice versa (I hope). He taught her so much, let her experience so much, in just one day. I really felt for this book, I thought it was so beautiful. After reading, I had a sudden urge to go to Paris! Is it me, or do people seem so nice in other places? 

I loved the book so, so much. The sequel is Just One Year, and it tells the story of Willem and what happened during that year. Can't wait!!! 

I Hunt Killers

Title: I Hunt Killers
"You won't know you've crossed the line until
it's way back in your rearview mirror"

Author: Barry Lyga

First Published: 2012

Series: Followed by Game

Genre: YA, Thriller, Horror, Mystery

Available As: Paperback, ebook

My Rating: 8.5/10

Jazz is the son of the notorious serial killer, Billy Dent. Since he was born, his father has been teaching him how to become a killer like him. He's been witnessing all his father's crimes from the inside view. But, his father has been in prison for a while now. Jazz thought his life would be better, until dead bodies start piling up. Again. And Jazz is determined to find the killer this time.

Jazz is a teenage boy who's already witnessed too many things he shouldn't have. It's scarred him, and sometimes, he feels like he is a killer on the inside, thanks to the lessons Billy drilled into his brain since young. He has flashbacks of when he was younger, and one of them is a recurring flashback of killing someone (He just can't seem to remember who!)

I also loved the relationship between Howie and Jazz. They're always there for each other, and Howie seems to be one of the reasons Jazz hasn't spiralled into insanity yet. Quite nice friendship. Jazz is protective of Howie, and I love their little conversations. It's funny. However, I thought Connie wasn't the most important. She's Jazz's girlfriend who doesn't seem much of help. *Sigh. Oh well.

There's a lot of vivid imagery in the book; it describes in detail all the gory bits, especially how each person was cruelly murdered. It's a gory book, and it's amazing. There are so many little details, and even some medical things you learn! Now I know how to cut off someone's fingers if I ever need to. Weird right?

I really liked how we could finally see the point of view of a serial killer, and how they really work, because you don't really see this in TV shows or movies. It's just not detailed enough. This time, you don't only see the point of view of the police and Jazz, but also how a serial killer thinks and works. Now, if you wanna become a serial killer, here's your book!

This book was amazing, and I know the sequel is out!! If you like gore and horror, here's your next read!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

October To Read List

October To Read List:

  • Checkmate by Malorie Blackman
    • I've read the first 2 books, it's absolutely amazing! I'll probably post a review on those soon!
  • Along For The Ride by Sarah Dessen
    • I've heard that Sarah Dessen in highly recommended!
  • Game by Barry Lygo
    • The sequel to I Hunt Killers- an amazing book! I love it so much!
  • The Chrysalids
    • Probably because I need to read this for school... 
I hope I can read all these! If you have read any of these books, tell me what you thought of it!