Wednesday, 31 October 2012

My Swordhand is Singing – Marcus Sedgwick

My Swordhand is Singing (My Swordhand is Singing, #1)Description
In a bitter winter, Tomas and his son, Peter, settle in a small village as woodcutters. Tomas digs a channel of fast-flowing waters around their hut so that they have their own little island kingdom. Peter doesn't understand why his father has done this, or why his father carries a long, battered box, whose mysterious contents he is forbidden to know.
But Tomas is a man with a past--a past that is tracking him with deadly intent. As surely as the snow falls softly in the forest of a hundred thousand silver birch trees, father and son must face a soulless enemy and a terrifying destiny.


My Opinion
OK, so because it is Halloween I have decided to re-read one of my favourite horror books. I still remember the scared feelings I had as I lay in bed after finishing this book for the first time. Reading it at 2am with just a fire light was definitely not the best idea... I lay awake for hours after the last few pages but even though I was scaring myself with my over active imagination I just couldn't stop reading. I loved the title and this is originally what drew me to the book as I really enjoy gothic/horror books.

This was the first book of Sedgwick's I ever read and since reading this book I have read many other books he has released. His writing is truly amazing! Sedgwick takes old legends, myths and period of times and twists them into a dark interesting, horror story.

The plot of this novel was great! It was dark, different and shocking with all it's twists and turns.
The character's were interesting and engaging and I found myself being drawn deeper and deeper into the world Sedgwick created. The bit that effected me most was towards the ending but by that point I was finding it impossible to stop. As well as this, the short chapters kept me turning pages just to find out what happened next. The books was incredibly atmospheric and I loved the darker version of a vampire/zombie story.

Even though this is like the fifteenth time I have read this book it still scares me every time. I don't know if that is just because I'm spooked easily but it is probably down to my over active imagination that gets lost in the believable worlds created by Sedgwick. I have definitely learnt my lesson though after the first time and now only read his work during daylight.

I can not recommend this book highly enough. Sedgwick's novels are some of the best I have read and his writing is great! If you want something that you can lose yourself in to get scared on Halloween this book would be great!  

Other great reads by Marcus Sedgwick that I have loved!

The Book of Dead Days (Book of Dead Days, #1)   The Dark Flight Down (Book of Dead Days, #2)  The Foreshadowing  Blood Red, Snow White The Kiss of Death (My Swordhand is Singing, #2)  White Crow

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Special Halloween Guest Post - by Author Stephanie Carroll

              Today I have author Stephanie Carroll posting on my blog. 
She has kindly written a post about putting the 'scary' into your scary stories. I found this a really enjoyable read (as I write dark paranormal romance myself) and it fits nicely seeing as Halloween is coming around the corner.

So everyone give a warm welcome to Stephanie! 


photo credit:
Stephanie Massaro via photopin cc
How to Get the Scary in Your Scary Story 

By Stephanie Carroll 

The Origins of Horror 
Most people probably have the impression that horror is a genre that reflects the extreme side of scary stories, meaning there are other genres, but as I researched this, it turns out that’s not quite the case.

According to the Horror Writer’s Association,any story meant to frighten the reader is considered horror fiction. However, in the 1980s and 1990s the horror genre became stereotyped following formulas debuted by Stephen King. In order to avoid the hype, modern day writers who technically write horror fiction label their works under another genre. For example, by the horror definition, The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold is horror fiction.

The roots of horror fiction come from ancient and folklore tales mostly dealing with religious fears, including death, the afterlife, evil, demons, and the devil. The genre of horror fiction specialized in the 18th century with Gothic Horror and continued in the 19th century with such classics as Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (1818), Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1897), Robert Louis Stevenson’s Th Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1886), and Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray (1890). Even more interesting, original horror targeted the female audience and usually included a female protagonist. Learn more at the Wikipedia Horror Entry.

photo credit: Bill McIntyre 
The classic ghost stories and other tales of death were refined within the genre of Weird Fiction, which developed in the 19th and 20th centuries and includes authors H.P. Lovecraft, Lord Dunsany, M. R. James, and Clark Ashton Smith. I did a recent post on Weird Fiction on my blog The Unhinged Historian if you’d like to learn more about this genre.

Horror and Weird Fiction are both sub-genres of Speculative Fiction, which includes any fantastical genre like fantasy and sci-fi. 

Scary Techniques
So if all scary stories are either speculative, horror, or weird, what are some of the different techniques for different types of scares?

photo credit
Once again referencing the Horror Writer’s Association, horror involves fear and as society embraces fear those anxieties lessen forcing writers to always be pushing the bounds of fear. Nevertheless, there are still some techniques that we can call upon.

Classic Gothic Horror – look into the classics, such as Bram Stroker’s Dracula and Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and reuse the classic techniques. Check out this post by WritingHood for ideas.

Monsters! – Classic and new monster stories are always fun. Usually, when we think of a monster story, we think of the swamp thing or the old werewolf flicks, but modern day monsters are created all the time. Check out these awesome videos for ideas about making up all new creatures and ghoulsThe Stan Winston School of Character Arts.

Suspense – a lot of people confuse suspense and thriller. The difference is that suspense causes a sense of anxiety due to impending danger whereas a thriller causes a sense of a rush due to action. Scary Suspense stories are the ones that have you gripping your seat then flinching when something jumps out causing you to spill your soda on your date. Check out this guest blog post on the Venture Galleries Blog.

Hauntings – If you like the Weird Fiction style, then maybe you’re interested in writing a modern day ghost story. I personally love ghost stories and Weird Fiction because hauntings are great for historical fiction writers. The reason being the best ghosts are from a creepy and disturbed past. Still, haunting stories have been done, done, done, so you need to make sure you are original. This Atomic Soapbox post has some pretty good points on how the ghost story works, and the best way to come up with something original is to understand what others have done and how the genre works.

Gore – it’s what modern day horror is all about, and a lot of people absolutely love it. Horror movies are huge right now, but what a lot of people are beginning to realize is that gore is always more graphic in books. Why? Because you can push farther in the written word. Take Misery by Stephen King – in the move Annie Wilkes crushes Paul Sheldon’s feet with a sledge hammer while he is still conscious, but in the book, she sawed those little footies off! Check out this eHow Article on How To Write Gory Fiction for help.

Tapping into our Darkest Fears – this is the biggie in my book for scary stuff. I still cannot stand to think of certain stories that involved burying people alive, cutting them open while they are awake, and sewing orifices to other orifices. I tried to find a good resource for this technique and couldn’t find one. It’s made me conclude that the best technique is to go for something that is so horrifying, so gruesome, that no one has dared to go there before. Start with your own worst fears and chose the one that you absolutely positively do not want to go with. It takes a certain kind of audience to appreciate this though, and I wouldn’t recommend it unless you are writing for those individuals.

I hope you found these techniques useful, and I wish you horrific luck in scaring the skinny jeans off some unsuspecting readers. Happy Halloween!

Cover by Jenny Q
About the Author

Stephanie Carroll writes dark historical fiction with a touch of magical realism. Her debut novel, A White Room, is coming out in the Summer of 2013. She also writes a blog, The Unhinged Historian, for readers and writers of magical, Gothic-Victorian, and Weird historical fiction. Her website is

Thank you Stephanie and good luck with all your writing and future work!

Happy Halloween everyone!

Thursday, 25 October 2012

Guest Post - Author Sherrie Cronin

Today I have author Sherrie Cronin on my blog today who has kindly written a little about herself and book. Her book y1 is out now and sound like a great read. 

So everyone give a warm welcome to Sherrie! 

y1 blurb:
Zane just wants to be himself. He doesn’t believe in magic, and he’s gotten a degree in neuroscience mostly to understand how he can alter his shape the way he does. Unfortunately, that degree has landed him in the sales department of Penthes Pharmaceuticals, and the more he learns about the company’s secrets the more uncomfortable he becomes. Good thing he has always excelled at blending in. Then upper management discovers him and his life gets even more complicated.

A sales boondoggle in the South Pacific shows him that he isn’t alone, and that others like him have problems far worse than his. As his new friends flee those who would control their lives, Zane wants to help. Their freedom-loving philosophy of y1 calls to him. But first he has to deal with a murder charge, an unsavory boot camp manager, and serious repercussions from the fact that not everyone at Penthes likes him, or wants him to knows the mysteries that the company has worked so hard to keep hidden. In fact, it may take all the talents he has just to keep from going from a murder suspect to a murder victim.

Author Bio: 
Sherrie Roth grew up in Western Kansas thinking that there was no place in the universe more fascinating than outer space. After her mother vetoed astronaut as a career ambition, she went on to study journalism and physics in hopes of becoming a science writer. She published her first short story in Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine, but when the next story idea came to her it declared that it had to be a whole book, nothing less. One night, while digesting this disturbing piece of news, she drank way too many shots of ouzo with her boyfriend. She woke up thirty-one years later demanding to know what was going on.

The boyfriend, who she had apparently long since married, explained calmly that in a fit of practicality she had gotten a degree in geophysics and had spent the last 28 years interpreting seismic data in the oil industry. The good news was that she had found it at least mildly entertaining and ridiculously well paying. The bad news was that the two of them had still managed to spend almost all of the money.

Apparently, she was now Mrs. Cronin, and they had produced three wonderful children whom they loved dearly, even though that is where a lot of the money had gone. Mr. Cronin turned out to be a warm-hearted sort who was happy to see her awake and ready to write. Sherrie Cronin discovered that over the ensuing decades Sally Ride had managed to become the first woman in space and apparently had done a fine job of it. No one, however, had written the book that had been in Sherrie's head for decades. The only problem was, the book informed her sternly that it had now grown into a six book series. Sherrie decided that she better start writing it before it got any longer. She has been wide awake ever since, and writing away.

You can find out more about Sherrie Cronin and y1 on her blog:

Book Available to buy here on Amazon

Monday, 22 October 2012

Giveaway - The Sarafin Perigord Sereis by A.J Scott-Ryder

I am pleased to announce that A.J Scott-Ryder has kindly offered to give away one kindle copy of each book this month on my blog! I have recently reviewed the first 2 books and will be starting the third soon. I really enjoyed both books as they are great reads for any paranormal/romance lover. Seriously you will not be dissapointed with these books and you won't be able to put them down!

You can read the reviews here:
The Secret Review
The Tattoo Review

Descriptions (The books can be read in order or as separate stories)

The Secret (Sarafin Perigord, # 1)The Secret ( Sarafin Perigord #1)
Catherine is a surgeon born into a family with a frustrating number of secrets. Photos hidden from view, her mother crying in the night, her father telling her she'd find out more when she was older. Well, she's older, her parents have both passed away and still completely in the dark she's moving from London to France to live in the home she never knew her father owned - and to meet Jean-Marc, the mysterious friend of the family her father told her to trust.
France introduces her to Tristan and from there to love, happiness and the French way of life. It also brings the growing realisation that not only are many of the people that she meets not exactly human, but possibly neither is she...
When her family's darkest secret is finally revealed, Catherine is forced to choose between staying in France where she has finally found happiness or protecting those she now loves from what she has learned by returning to England to the same half-life that her parents endured.

The Tattoo (Sarafin Perigord, #2)
The Tattoo (Sarafin Perigord #2)

Twenty-something Amelia is used to thinking of herself as the immature dropout of the family, with zero love life and a failed attempt at a university degree behind her.
Complications force her to give up her job in a tattoo parlour but things look up as she starts work in an alternative bookshop in Bristol and begins the "great quest" that she set herself at her mother's deathbed.
This quest brings Amelia to France and to the man she is destined to love and from there to more danger. In the end she realises that the hardest thing to conquer is your own fear when everything about you is changing and you have left your comfort zone far behind you.
A story about love, courage and ultimately trust, told with insight and humour.

The Journey (Sarafin Perigord, #3)The Journey (Sarafin Perigord #3)
Anne-Sophie's life is full of frustrations. These include working alongside overly protective Frenchmen in the Sarafin as well as being in love with Jean-Marc, who hardly seems to notice that she exists...
When a perilous assignment crops up requiring one of the Sarafin to travel to Elizabethan England in a parallel dimension she insists on being chosen for the job as her right. She realises that she has bitten off more than she can chew, however, when she is transported into the role of a powerless woman of that era and has to find some way to get from a dangerous Scotland to the even more dangerous court of Elizabeth I.
Anne-Sophie finds herself marrying against her wishes and sharing a bed with a man she met only days before and in the process finds out more about herself than she was ready to know.
A sweeping tale of love, loss and friendship, The Journey will make you laugh and cry.

 OK so now for the giveaway!

Answers to the bonus questions can be found in the description or my reviews.
The winners will be notified by email within 48hrs of the giveaway ending, if you do not reply to confirm your email then another winner will be chosen. After confirming your email winners will be contacted by the author with the gifted book.

Good Luck Everyone!

a Rafflecopter giveaway a Rafflecopter giveaway a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, 21 October 2012

The Tattoo - (Sarafin Perigord, # 2) - A.J. Scott-Ryder

The Tattoo (Sarafin Perigord, #2)Description

Twenty-something Amelia is used to thinking of herself as the immature dropout of the family, with zero love life and a failed attempt at a university degree behind her.
Complications force her to give up her job in a tattoo parlour but things look up as she starts work in an alternative bookshop in Bristol and begins the "great quest" that she set herself at her mother's deathbed.
This quest brings Amelia to France and to the man she is destined to love and from there to more danger. In the end she realises that the hardest thing to conquer is your own fear when everything about you is changing and you have left your comfort zone far behind you.
A story about love, courage and ultimately trust, told with insight and humour.

The Tattoo is the second story in the Sarafin Perigord series but the books can be enjoyed in any order as each is a stand-alone novel in its own right.

My Opinion

After reading from the descriptions that these books can be read as stand alone novels I was unsure as to what expect from the second instalment. I didn't know whether I would enjoy it as much as I thought that A.J. Scott-Ryder may have written Catherine and Tristan out of the book totally but I was glad this was not the case. The Tattoo hooked me straight away and I found it incredibly hard to put down. I was reading it, telling myself that I would stop at the end of the next chapter where as in reality it was about twelve chapters later and 2am before I finally admitted I needed sleep.

I really enjoyed the first book in the series but I loved this one even more. There was a darker side to it, which I loved but it also helped that I didn't find myself confused at all throughout the book. Even though these books can be read on their own I would seriously recommend reading the first instalment before picking up this one as it will help clear up a lot of the paranormal aspects.

During this book I found myself comparing Amelia to Catherine and I think I enjoyed Amelia's story more. For me she hard a harder and tougher appearance in the beginning which I enjoyed more as it meant there was more action than just the romance. Also the twists in this book also kept me in suspense. Seriously I did not expect what happens near the end and during certain parts of the book I found myself almost crying at certain character’s change in attitude. I really liked how A.J. Scott-Ryder used Emeric's character to soften Amelia's rough edges and gave balance to the book. Whether this was intentional or not I really enjoyed it.

Unlike with the first book I had no issues with understanding this book. Everything was easy to follow and the speech seemed to flow more naturally. The only thing I'm not so keen on is the covers to the series. I'm guilty of judging a book by the cover before reading the description and if I had not been contacted by the author then I doubt I would have been drawn to them as for me they look more like historical romances rather than paranormal book.

Overall though I am so glad I have had the chance to read these books and I will soon be starting the third book. I would highly recommend both the first and second book in this series to all paranormal romance lovers. They are fast paced, full of action and easy to connect with the characters. This book took me on an emotional roller-coaster which is unusual but I loved every second of it.


Saturday, 20 October 2012

Guest Post by Author Catherine Doughty

Hi everyone! Today day I have the amazing author Catherine Doughty on my blog. Her book Breast Cancer! You're Kidding...Right? is out now and she has written a post about it.  Also It is breast cancer awareness month so this post fits nicely with that. 
So everyone give a warm welcome to Catherine 

Breast Cancer! You're Kidding... Right? Living Life Through the Prism of Uncertainty and Having a Good Time!What Do You Do When You Are Diagnosed With Breast Cancer?
Catherine Doughty, MS, CCHI – Award Winning Author

Finally, Catherine Doughty, MS, CCHI has changed everything people ever thought they knew about breast cancer and how to seek and implement their treatment when they have heard the words, “You have breast cancer!”   It’s called, Breast Cancer!  You’re kidding…right?  Living Life Through The Prism Of Uncertainty And Having A Good Time!  It is world class, superior, sexy and will go down in history as the most mesmerizing book ever written on the subject of breast cancer treatment and strategy.   

The award winning author, Catherine Doughty, MS, CCHI is a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt and a Director of Diagnostic and Interventional Imaging in one of the largest health science centers in the world.  An undefeated breast cancer survivor herself, who has secured significant physician endorsements and laudatory applause for her brand new award winning book.  “Physicians and patients state that their speechless!  If the title and front cover of the book doesn’t grab you, the back cover and content will demand that it be read.”  The book is loaded with mind blowing and thought provoking strategy to assist anyone with any stage of breast cancer emerge stunning, and get their life back in control while learning how to make decisions in an uncertain decision space and live their life through the prism of uncertainty while having one rocking hot good time. 

When this unbelievable news hit the wires, everyone began seeking the attention of the renowned author, Catherine Doughty, MS, CCHI or the Cat as she affectionately likes to be called to discover the science behind this Earth-shattering new award winning book.  According to Doughty, it is the simplicity – no scholarly science, just pure scientific methodology and remarkable craftsmanship.  It started with the most shocking news a person could ever hear which is, “You have cancer!”  Once the disbelief wore off, the questions started to surface, “Where does a person start to unravel this mystery?” 

Once you have heard, “You have cancer!”  The first thing that needs to be realized is a fact of fundamental importance, and that is uncertainty.  Because it means breaking away from all of the ordinary predispositions of thought you were living with and reconstructing a new phase of your life.  You also need to give yourself some room to understand the absolutely fresh new scale of values which the prism of uncertainty presents to you.  After you get a hold of uncertainty as the true reality for everyone, it is the sexiest way to live and, every day you will have a rocking hot good time!

In the beginning, don’t imagine that you can assimilate a breast cancer diagnosis, what you will or won’t accept in the treatment planning stages and all that it contains in one or two clinical visits with your surgeon, oncologist or other subject matter experts, or in one or two readings.  You need a strategy to navigate the medical maze and fast.  You should review your reports and go over your options again and again with your physicians until you have thoroughly grasped the magnitude of the treatment plans you are willing to consent to because it is you who will live with the aftermath of every clinical decision carried out.

Doughty says, “I was the other girl, not the girl being told, “You have cancer!”  “I never in a million years dreamed I would be diagnosed with breast cancer.”  Just to give you some background, breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in women, exceeded only by lung cancer. The American Cancer Society's most recent estimates for breast cancer in the United States are for 2012:
  • About 226,870 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in women.
  • About 63,300 new cases of ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) will be diagnosed (DCIS is non-invasive and is the earliest form of breast cancer).
  • About 39,510 women will die from breast cancer.
The book is an accounting of my personal experience with breast cancer.  What I did to emerge cancer free, and look absolutely beautiful.  One thing my training as a Director of Diagnostic and Interventional Imaging and a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt within the healthcare industry taught me is that imaging, pathology and data are pivotal components in organizing the decision making process when it comes to a breast cancer diagnosis.  I have condensed the subject matter into the smallest compass possible because, as everyone knows who has fallen into what I call the “Cosmic Cancer Bunny Hole,” conciseness, tool sets for clinical discussions with physicians, and precision in treatment scenario planning is of the greatest assistance in decision making.

The book was designed with the principles and elements for success, in response to the requests I received from all the cancer patients I have voluntarily coached.  So often, they had been terrified, crying for days and weeks at a time and they all had the same question, “Where do I begin to unravel this, and where do I start?”  Hence, the birth of the book, Breast Cancer!  You’re kidding…right?  Living Life Through The Prism Of Uncertainty And Having A Good Time!

You will be on the edge of your seat with every single word in this book.  It captures the readers  from beginning to end, and makes them want to live their life through the prism of uncertainty.  The book is superior, sexy and stuffed with the secrets to successfully navigate the medical maze with a breast cancer diagnosis and emerge strong, health and absolutely stunning.   This is an adrenaline thrill ride from start to finish, that you cannot put down!
One of the questions people want to know is how do I get a copy of the book?  The book is available worldwide, including, both paperback and Kindle versions at
Barnes and Noble, and through your favorite online or brick-and-mortar bookstore or through my website at

About the Author:

Catherine Doughty, MS, CCHI is an award winning author who lives in Bellaire, Texas. She serves as an adjunct associate professor for three universities and holds a Master of Science in Biomedical Informatics earned at the University of Texas. Her career as a Director for a Department of Diagnostic and Interventional Imaging is enhanced by the fact that she is a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt.

She is available for interviews, media appearances, blogging, radio interviews, book signings, and speaking engagements. If you would like additional information on the secrets of scientific methodology or would like to meet the physicians that endorsed this award winning book, please visit her website at In order to contact the author directly, send an e-mail to or telephone at 832-545-6239.

Thank you Catherine and good luck with you book!

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

The Whispers of the Sprite – Joanna Mazurkiewicz

The Whispers of the SpriteDescription
When Ania moves from London to Swansea city in Wales she is hoping that her life will get a bit more exciting, after all she is running away from her controlling mother to taste more freedom and feel more independent. Everything seems to be going the way she wanted until she almost dies while taking a quiet walk around the beach in the late evening.
When she opens her eyes, nothing seems the same...
She starts seeing people that no one else is able to notice. An enchanting looking man keeps following her and Ania’s life seems to getting more exciting than she ever wished for.
After the attack something changes inside her, she has been blessed with the new frightening gift of seeing and hearing sprites all around her... the magical creatures that only existed in folklore, myths and legends of Britain.
Gabriel is attractive and handsome but no ... he is not a vampire. He keeps coming back and Ania feels an instant connection between them but this might get her into more trouble. Supernatural romance is not on her mind right now.
Because he is forbidden to even touch her ... the line between the death and love has never been so thin and the sprites won’t stop whispering until ... she will choose to love or abandon Gabriel.

My Opinion

This book created some original characters that were interesting and exciting to read about. I love it when a new paranormal creature is developed as it brings a whole new set of ideas to read about. I enjoyed the concept of Sprites as it was unusual and I haven't read anything like it before so I found myself reading on to find out more about their nature. I also enjoyed the twists in this book as it kept me wanting to read on. The romances in this book were developed just right. There was just enough detail to keep you in suspense of what would happen next in the character's lives which was great.

I did have a few issues with this book though. For me there wasn't enough dialogue to break up the long description (which I ended up skim reading at times) and sometimes I felt that not all of the description was relevant. I found myself asking “why do I need to know this?” as it didn't seem to add anything or help to move the story on. I also found myself wanting more details about things that weren't written about, which frustrated me, e.g at one point Mazurkiewicz wrote that Ania had a conversation with Amy and I found myself almost screaming as I would have rather read the dialogue than having the fact stated.

As well as this the book seemed a bit disjointed. Mazurkiewicz used a lot of asterisks to move from one scene to the next and I found this sort of irritating as it felt like the book kept stopping and starting. In some places where I expected to be a chapter break there were asterisks and where I expected asterisks there was a new chapter. I also found a few grammar problems, where the tenses changed from present to past and there are a few typos, but these are few and minor.

The paranormal story in this book is simple to understand, original and interesting. The characters were easy to sympathise with but I didn't get as much of a connection as I would have liked, especially at the end. The end of the book also leaves you on a cliff hanger and even though I had these problems with the book I still want to read the next one.

Overall I enjoyed the new concept, creatures and story line as it was original. However for me, my main problem was the lack of dialogue and long descriptions. I found myself skimming pages and not getting as lost in the book as I would have liked to. If you want to read about a new addition to the paranormal creatures then I would recommend this book as it was an exciting read.

RATING: I'd say this book is somewhere between 2.5 and 3 (but near 2.5) as I did have quite a few problems with it.

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

The Secret (Sarafin Perigord # 1) - A.J. Scott-Ryder

The Secret (Sarafin Perigord, # 1)Description
Catherine is a surgeon born into a family with a frustrating number of secrets. Photos hidden from view, her mother crying in the night, her father telling her she'd find out more when she was older. Well, she's older, her parents have both passed away and still completely in the dark she's moving from London to France to live in the home she never knew her father owned - and to meet Jean-Marc, the mysterious friend of the family her father told her to trust.

France introduces her to Tristan and from there to love, happiness and the French way of life. It also brings the growing realisation that not only are many of the people that she meets not exactly human, but possibly neither is she...

When her family's darkest secret is finally revealed, Catherine is forced to choose between staying in France where she has finally found happiness or protecting those she now loves from what she has learned by returning to England to the same half-life that her parents endured.

My Opinion
I really enjoyed reading this book and it kept me entertained throughout a long coach journey, which would have bored me stupid if I had not had this book. The characters and paranormal element were original and interesting and even though I had to get towards the end of the book before I actually found out what Tristan was, the book had a good enough narrative to keep me interested. I don't normally like having to wait so long to find out something like that and it did frustrate me slightly when A.J. Scott-Ryder kept referring to certain terms (ceremonies, portals etc) as I didn't understand what they were and how they tied into the story. Thankfully though every question I had was answered during some point in the book and it was worth the wait (I did also find a glossary at the back after I finished reading which was slightly annoying as I could have saved myself a lot of confusion).

I loved the romance in this book and I felt I could easily connect with the characters, allowing me to get lost in the story even more. The misunderstanding between Tristan, Catherine and Jean-Marc had me laughing and 'awwing' at the same time, something I don't normally do. The romance and paranormal aspects were cleverly interlinked into the plot so it was simple to understand (when explained) and the imagery used in the book was great. I really got lost in the world A.J. Scott-Ryder created.
A few downsides to this book though was that at times I didn't feel the speech was as natural as it could be. For me it kind of took away from the great storyline, especially during intimate or heartfelt moments as it either didn't seem fit or was a little to cheesy for my liking. Other than that, I really enjoyed this book though. It is original, interesting and keeps you reading as you want to know more. I would seriously recommend this to paranormal romance or romance lovers.

Friday, 5 October 2012

Things are Going to Slide - Rangeley Wallace

Things Are Going to SlideDescription
In Things Are Going to Slide, Marilee Carson Cooper, daughter of a prominent southern family, teaches law and runs a law school legal aid clinic in the small Alabama town her family has inhabited for generations. But then things slip out of her control. She is pregnant with her second child when her husband leaves her for another man. She loses a coveted job--to her first love--that would ensure her financial security, and she is desperately trying to help a teen-age mother accused of murdering her baby. 

My Opinion

This book was different from most things I had read before. I enjoyed the twists and turns the book took, most of which kept you guessing throughout. Even though there wasn't as much action (I'm not saying there wasn't drama because there was a lot) as I normally like in a book, it did keep me hooked and I found myself staying up as I had lost track of time. I could also sympathise with Marilee's, (the leading female character) emotions and situations easily which was good as it meant I wasn't disconnected from the book. The romance was intertwined around Marilee's life and there wasn't as much romance as I would have liked from a book in the Chick- lit genre, but when Wallace did include it, I loved it! At first I didn't know how to respond to Dwight but by the end I found myself beginning to like him more and more.

I did have a few problems with this book though. First of all I found myself quite confused at times as Wallace used some acronyms/abbreviations without explaining what they meant, although this might be because they are common knowledge in the US and if it was, being from the UK meant I had trouble understanding. I also struggled at times to understand some of the lawyer's jargon as not having a great knowledge of the subject I found myself needing extra explanations that never arrived.

As well as this the chapter length hindered me slightly, as I hate stopping in the middle of the chapter, so when chapter 1 appeared as 91pages on my iPod I found it a struggle to read as it didn't seem to move on quick enough. Sometimes it seemed there may have been too much description (I know what your thinking, how can a book have too much description) but for me, sometimes the book went on a bit too much about the surroundings and things I wasn't interested in, which didn't move the story on quick enough for me. However the chapters and description did vary throughout the book and the story keeps you hooked so it's not a major problem.

Overall this book kept me hooked and I did find it an interesting read. At points I struggled with some of the language (so beware as some parts may be hard to understand if you are like me and clueless about law) and I had a few other problems but they were minor. I liked the relationships intertwined in the story and would liked to have seen them developed/detailed more as I'm a sucker for romance, but generally this book also kept me guessing, which was great as unpredictable books in my are opinion are the best kind.

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