Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Blog Tour + Review: The Empress Chronicles by Suzy Vitello

Published by Diversion Books

Title: The Empress Chronicles (The Empress Chronicles #1)
Author: Suzy Vitello
Release Date: 4th September 2014
Publisher: Diversion Books

In this dazzling first book in the EMPRESS CHRONICLES series by the author of THE MOMENT BEFORE, one courageous girl seeks keys to the past to unlock the future...

When city girl Liz is banished to a rural goat farm on the outskirts of Portland, the 15-year-old feels her life spiraling out of control.  She can’t connect to her father or his young girlfriend, and past trauma adds to her sense of upheaval.  The only person who seems to keep her sane is a troubled boy who is fighting his own demons.  But all of this changes in one historical instant.
One-hundred fifty years earlier, Elisabeth of Bavaria has troubles of her own.  Her childhood is coming to a crashing end, and her destiny is written in the form of a soothsaying locket that has the ability to predict true love.  But evil is afoot in the form of a wicked enchantress who connives to wield the power of the locket for her own destructive ends.
When Liz finds a timeworn diary, and within it a locket, she discovers the secrets and desires of the young Bavarian princess who will one day grow up to be the legendary Empress of Austria. It is in the pages of the diary that these two heroines will meet, and it is through their interwoven story that Liz will discover she has the power to rewrite history—including her own...

Readers of books like Rachel Harris’s MY SUPER SWEET SIXTEENTH CENTURY will love THE EMPRESS CHRONICLES

Detailed Review: *I received a copy of the book from the author in exchange for my honest review of the book for the blog tour*

OK, first, I must admit something. I chose to enter the blog tour for The Empress Chronicles because of one thing (amongst many other things): the cover. Yes, I'm ashamed of that. 

After reading the blurb, my desire to read this book intensified- oh come on, who wouldn't love a good historical fiction?

I wasn't disappointed and disappointed at the same time. 

My most heartbreaking moment wasn't to do with any of the characters or even the story, it was the grammar in this book, which was unbearable at times. It had me wanting to take a marker pen and scribble the right form of a word in there. 

The story was written in two voices, Liz's and Sisi's (Elisabeth). It was actually two lifetimes in one story, but they each had a connecting point somewhere in each other's life. This was definitely what I liked.

When I read the blurb, I was expecting more of a time-travel story, but this was different, original- something I like and need. 

I honestly preferred Sisi over Liz, although Liz played an essential part in her counterpart's life. I was happy the OCD part wasn't written too out of character, but I overall had the impression that she was a weak and helpless person. This needs to be changed in the sequel immediately. Sisi was more daring and was pretty much the voice that drove the novel, despite Liz's part of the story. Cory, Liz's love interest, was really pushed to the sidelines, in my opinion, even though he did help with Liz's recovery. It wasn't that I didn't like Liz and Cory; they were good enough, but they could be more.

Having two heroines is an incredibly hard thing to do, so I decided to be lenient about it. AND having a too-perfect main character wouldn't do either, so yes- I would prefer Liz to be flawed than to be perfect. Sisi, please please stay the way you are, in the sequel. That's all I'll say.

The romance in the book wasn't heavy, and I'm not going to fault it because having lots of romance would actually ruin the story. The subject in the book isn't just about the romance; it's also about family and history and much much more. A romance-driven book would not be suitable for a storyline like The Empress Chronicles'.

Fortunately, the writing style was one I liked. It was descriptive, but not too descriptive, not giving unnecessary details to the reader but drawing him/her into the story all the same. It engages the reader well. 

I almost forgot to comment on the twists; some of them were inconsequential, but some were really well-written to the point where I would give the author a round of applause. 

The Empress Chronicles did follow the unsaid trend in the YA book industry though, which frustrated and delighted me all at the same times- a cliffhanger that was unexpected. One that would beg me to read the sequel.

Brief Review: Elisabeth's story is one of intrigue and magic, mixed in with some much-needed spunk; Liz's story is one of love and family. The author skilfully unites them together with just one factor: unfortunate circumstances that is conveyed through a journal. This is what makes me hold this book at higher regards than I would have. If only the novel was more polished, and the characters more likeable, a 5 star rating would have been guaranteed on the spot.

Final Rating: 4/5 'Liked It'


This seemed an accurate description of the magical connection between Liz and Elisabeth,

Time flies over us, but leaves its shadow behind---Nathaniel Hawthorne

Your Reviewer:

About The Author
Suzy Vitello is a proud founding member of a critique group recently dubbed The Hottest Writing Group in Portland, and her short stories have won fellowships and prizes (including the Atlantic Monthly Student Writing Award, and an Oregon Literary Arts Fellowship).
Twitter: @suzy_vitello

Waiting on Wednesday: The Secrets We Keep by Trisha Leaver

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that highlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pre-publication 'can't-wait-to-read' selection is:

Title: The Secrets We Keep
Author: Trisha Leaver
Release Date: 28th April 2015
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Girroux (BYR)
Find on: Goodreads

A girl takes over her twin sister's identity in this emotionally charged page-turner about the complicated bond between sisters.

Ella and Maddy Lawton are identical twins. Ella has spent her high school years living in popular Maddy's shadows, but she has never been envious of Maddy. In fact, she's chosen the quiet, safe confines of her sketchbook over the constant battle for attention that has defined Maddy's world.

When—after a heated argument—Maddy and Ella get into a tragic accident that leaves her sister dead, Ella wakes up in the hospital surrounded by loved ones who believe she is Maddy. Feeling responsible for Maddy's death and everyone's grief, Ella makes a split-second decision to pretend to be Maddy. Soon, Ella realizes that Maddy's life was full of secrets. Caught in a web of lies, Ella is faced with two options—confess her deception or live her sister's life.

You had me at 'emotionally charged'. I've developed a sudden craving for emotional books (call it the John Green effect) and this seems to fit the bill. Any cover judger's got to love that cover too! DUH.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Teaser Tuesday #9

Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

I just finished reading The Empress Chronicles by Suzy Vitello and I thought I'd share a teaser from the book with you! I really liked it and I think historical fiction fans would like it too!!! Here's a snippet from the last page of the book!

Where my own face had just a few moments earlier looked out from the keepsake, there was now a picture of a girl, a peasant, ruddy of cheek, and freckled. And where her peasant's bonnet should have been was a head of tufted, fuzzy hair.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday: Golden Son (Red Rising #2) by Pierce Brown

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that highlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pre-publication 'can't-wait-to-read' selection is:

Title: Golden Son (Red Rising #2)
Author: Pierce Brown
Release Date: 13th January 2015
Publisher: Del Rey (Random House)
Find on: Goodreads

With shades of The Hunger GamesEnder’s Game, and Game of Thrones, debut author Pierce Brown’s genre-defying epic Red Rising hit the ground running and wasted no time becoming a sensation. Golden Son continues the stunning saga of Darrow, a rebel forged by tragedy, battling to lead his oppressed people to freedom from the overlords of a brutal elitist future built on lies. Now fully embedded among the Gold ruling class, Darrow continues his work to bring down Society from within. A life-or-death tale of vengeance with an unforgettable hero at its heart, Golden Son guarantees Pierce Brown’s continuing status as one of fiction’s most exciting new voices.

Genre-defying? Check. Epic? Check. A sensation? Check. Red Rising was definitely all those. I really can't wait to see what the author brings us in Golden Son, as I was very impressed with how Pierce Brown created his own ground in the dystopian genre. Even the cover looks promising! Fingers crossed!!!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Teaser Tuesday #8

Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Today my teaser will be from a novella, called This Night So Dark by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner. It's set between These Broken Stars and This Shattered World. If you haven't read These Broken Stars, go read it!!! You can find my review for it HERE.

And here's the snippet:

"Nice to meet you," she manages, still shaky as she starts working at my bindings.

"You too," I say with a hint of a smile I don't expect. 

Review: Red Rising (Red Rising #1) by Pierce Brown

Title: Red Rising (Red Rising #1)
Author: Pierce Brown
Release Date: 28th January 2014
Publisher: Del Rey (Random House)
Find on: Goodreads

Quick ReviewThe Earth is dying. Darrow is a Red, a miner in the interior of Mars. His mission is to extract enough precious elements to one day tame the surface of the planet and allow humans to live on it. The Reds are humanity's last hope.

Or so it appears, until the day Darrow discovers it's all a lie. That Mars has been habitable - and inhabited - for generations, by a class of people calling themselves the Golds. A class of people who look down on Darrow and his fellows as slave labour, to be exploited and worked to death without a second thought.

Until the day that Darrow, with the help of a mysterious group of rebels, disguises himself as a Gold and infiltrates their command school, intent on taking down his oppressors from the inside. But the command school is a battlefield - and Darrow isn't the only student with an agenda

Detailed Review: *I received an e-galley of this book via NetGalley in exchange for my honest review* (This is not an ARC)

I believe I have just found the newest breakthrough in dystopia.

Let's face it, there are plenty of authors who write about dystopian worlds, the most obvious being Suzanne Collins, Veronica Roth and many more.

Red Rising is different. 

Of course, some things still need to be kept the same, because it's still a dystopian book- there's a hierarchy of people, and the main character is always in the lowest level. A rebellion is essential for the plot to progress. It needs a purpose.

These things still exist in the book, but Brown decided to have a different take. The reversal of roles is not very common in dystopian books. That is, you seldom find the main character immediately becoming someone who possesses power by becoming a person of high class. Usually the main character becomes famous through an act of rebellion.

In Red Rising, Darrow is a LowRed, a miner who drills for the resources that are needed to terraform the planet of Mars. His wife, Eo, is also like him- but she makes a living by creating silk. 

The hierarchy is basically divided into colours- a Red being the lowest and a Gold the highest. Each Colour has their own role within the society.

Then, a life-changing event causes him to join the rebellion which his wife was so passionate about. His status changes from that of a peasant to the highest level- a Gold, as he tries to infiltrate the class of people whom he has grown to hate, destroying them from within. 

The Academy's layout was one I liked; it was reminiscent of Harry Potter, where there were different houses, like the one Darrow joins, House Mars. Others included Minerva, Jupiter, Apollo, Pluto and many more.

My favourite character throughout the book is a Gold named Sevro. There will always be levels within levels, and in the Gold society, he is considered weak. And yet, he proved himself to be worthy and became Darrow's sidekick as he navigated the battlefield that is the Academy. Sevro has got to be one of the best sidekicks I've ever read about.

Red Rising was a very character-driven book. Darrow's voice, along with those with him, are what drives the plot and the twists in the book. The characters were each fulfilling in their roles and also engaging with their unique personalities.  They balanced each other out really well, creating an atmosphere of palpable tension and mouth-watering action.

Darrow's transformation into a Gold was easily the best part in the book, because it was miraculous to watch someone transform before your very eyes. Also, the reality of not trying to change into the society you are cast into proves to be engaging as Darrow tries to keep his old self as he plays a new role.

Another thing I liked was how the author depicted Golds. There were two sides- one where they were nasty and cruel, and the other where some were not. It's a challenge which Darrow has to face most of the time. 

I also sensed a new love interest- another Gold who has an unexpected family background which Darrow didn't learn about until the very end. Her nickname is Mustang, but her real name is Virginia, and it appears that she is the daughter of the ArchGovernor, the very man who changed Darrow's life. 

I shall leave it to you to figure out what happens in the end. The ending was not decidedly a cliffhanger, but it certainly promised more...

Warning: Plot twists are pretty common in this book. (I don't think it can be considered as one, is it? Anyway, happy reading!)

Brief Review: In a genre that's growing competitive with many mainstream ideas, Pierce Brown isn't afraid to take a leap of faith and jump in with a completely new idea that will satisfy all the restless readers out there. Crafting a complex world where nothing is as it seems- where even if you are the best, you must still try harder- the author also weaves a tale of sacrifice and love as a teenage boy is forced to acknowledge the cruelty of the world which he lives in, and fight back.

Final Rating: 5/5 'Totally Amazing!!!


This certainly describes Darrow's motivation in fulfilling his role in the rebellion,

Great achievement is usually born of great sacrifice, and is never the result of selfishness---Napoleon Hill

Your Reviewer:

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday: The Walls Around Us by Nova Ren Suma

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that highlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pre-publication 'can't-wait-to-read' selection is:

Title: The Walls Around Us
Author: Nova Ren Suma
Publisher: Algonquin Young Readers
Release Date: 24th March 2015
Find on: Goodreads

“Ori’s dead because of what happened out behind the theater, in the tunnel made out of trees. She’s dead because she got sent to that place upstate, locked up with those monsters. And she got sent there because of me.”

The Walls Around Us is a ghostly story of suspense told in two voices—one still living and one long dead. On the outside, there’s Violet, an eighteen-year-old dancer days away from the life of her dreams when something threatens to expose the shocking truth of her achievement. On the inside, within the walls of a girls’ juvenile detention center, there’s Amber, locked up for so long she can’t imagine freedom. Tying these two worlds together is Orianna, who holds the key to unlocking all the girls’ darkest mysteries.

We hear Amber’s story and Violet’s, and through them Orianna’s, first from one angle, then from another, until gradually we begin to get the whole picture—which is not necessarily the one that either Amber or Violet wants us to see.
Nova Ren Suma tells a supernatural tale of guilt and innocence, and what happens when one is mistaken for the other.

These types of creepy stories are my favourite because they definitely don't bore me and I'd definitely like to see how the author manages to tell the story from the POV of a dead girl. I heard she does it quite well :p Did I mention the cover is beautiful? I believe it really captures the book's overall atmosphere!! This will be my first Nova Ren Suma book and I can't wait! P.S. I got approved for an e-galley of this book on NetGalley and can't wait to dig in!!!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Teaser Tuesday #7

Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

It's been a while since I've done a teaser!!! Here's one, taken from Invisible by Dawn Metcalf, which is the second book in a series called the Twixt. I'm currently enjoying it so far!!! :) Please share the links to your teasers in the comments below, or if you don't have a blog, just your teaser.

'There was no use trying to deny it. Joy blew the blade clean, just like Ink, watching the tiny droplets of red lift and disappear under her breath- pg117

Friday, October 10, 2014

ARC Review: Love and Other Unknown Variables by Shannon Lee Alexander

Title: Love and Other Unkown Variables
Author: Shannon Lee Alexander
Release Date: 7th October 2014
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Find on: Goodreads

Quick ReviewCharlie Hanson has a clear vision of his future. A senior at Brighton School of Mathematics and Science, he knows he’ll graduate, go to MIT, and inevitably discover solutions to the universe’s greatest unanswered questions. He’s that smart. But Charlie’s future blurs the moment he reaches out to touch the tattoo on a beautiful girl’s neck. 

The future has never seemed very kind to Charlotte Finch, so she’s counting on the present. She’s not impressed by the strange boy at the donut shop—until she learns he’s a student at Brighton where her sister has just taken a job as the English teacher. With her encouragement, Charlie orchestrates the most effective prank campaign in Brighton history. But, in doing so, he puts his own future in jeopardy. 

By the time he learns she's ill—and that the pranks were a way to distract Ms. Finch from Charlotte’s illness—Charlotte’s gravitational pull is too great to overcome. Soon he must choose between the familiar formulas he’s always relied on or the girl he’s falling for (at far more than 32 feet per second squared).

Detailed ReviewDetailed Review: <<I received an ARC copy of this book via NetGalley from the publisher in exchange for my honest feedback>>

Sorry for the really delayed review! Apologies to the publisher and author. I've been so busy nowadays that I can hardly find time to blog! 

Love and Other Unknown Variables was pretty much a book for John Green fans. It was a cross between The Fault in our Stars and Looking for Alaska. And a bit of Am Abundance of Katherines as well. And if you're wondering, I have read every John Green book except Let It Snow.

So you have this really smart and logical guy and this mysterious girl who is terminally ill? Instant sparks and then a love story. And considerably very John Green-ish. 

Oh, but it's so much more than that. It's not JUST a love story, it's a story of a logical person's perception of love. It tells a story about love shaking your world to its very core, causing you to lose certainty of your life and future. In the end, it doesn't even matter.

I didn't even realise the effect this book had on me until one particular part that linked to the very first chapter. Here's an idea of how it was like. The chapter headers weren't common ones like Chapter 1. It was more of a logical idea, like Charlie's personality. 

I will give you a taste of the first chapter.


Beginnings are tricky things. I've been staring at this blank page for forty-seven minutes. It is infinite with possibilities. Once I begin, they diminish.

Scientifically, I know beginnings don't exist. The world is made of energy, which is neither created nor destroyed. Everything she is was here before me. Everything she was will always remain. Her existence touches both my past and future at one point- infinity.

Lifelines aren't lines at all. They're more like circles.

It's safe to start anywhere and the story will curve its way back to the starting point. Eventually.

In other words, it doesn't matter where I begin. It doesn't change the end.

And so it begins, from 1.0 on the circle up to 1.0 again. It really does happen in the book, when the circle reaches 0.0. I just lost it then. And no, it wasn't the beginning. Is there really any real beginning in a circle? You won't understand, but if you read this book, you will. 

My favourite character wasn't Charlie or Charlotte; it was a character who, although didn't appear as often as the main characters, played a vital role in the book and liven it up. She is Mrs Dunwitty, whose garden Charlie ran over in his car when he was daydreaming about Charlotte. This means that he has to come back every afternoon after school to repair the garden until its whole again. The old woman was like a reminder to me that it was ok to stand out in the crowd, with her house door painted flamingo-ass pink, and her own species of roses, the Harvest Moon. She definitely wins an award for best supporting character. Greta comes a close second. Friendship is as important as romance in this book.

The plot, was not how John Green would have structured it, so it did have a sense of originality I liked. It was ordinary, primarily, but it didn't play down the love Charlie and Charlotte had for each other. I believe it did the exact opposite. The story instead augmented their love. I liked the fact that it showed the power of first love, and how it was its own force, independent of any variables- except for Charlotte's sickness, of course, but does it even matter if she's sick? I don't think so. I believe it would be the same thing even if Charlotte wasn't sick.

Finally, the pairing couldn't have been more perfect. Charlie is a logical person, anchored by his planned future. Charlotte was more like drifter, drifting from one place to another and finding solace and herself in art. And as they say, opposites attract.

There was one part where there was a painting in Charlotte's house of a barn with holes. A girl was looking through it. The girl was Charlotte's sister, Jo and the barn was Charlotte. 

Get it ? GET IT? 

Oh lord, another book of metaphors. Another person has risen up to continue John Green's legacy. But I don't mind. I really don't mind.

Brief Review: In Love And Other Unknown Variables, we see Charlie's perspective of love firsthand, mixed in with biological references of reactions to love. With characters like Charlie and Charlotte, sparks will instantly fly between the both of them. This book shows the power of first love and how it defies even science and logic, mixed in with new friendships and life lessons. It certainly shines as bright as a John Green book, or possibly even brighter!

Final Rating: 5/5 'Totally Amazing!'


 I'm going to use a quote featured in the book, which I believe highlights the theme in the book so well,

How on earth are you ever going to explain in terms of chemistry and physics so important a biological phenomenon as first love?--- Albert Einstein

Your Reviewer:

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Waiting on Wednesday: The Last Time We Say Goodbye by Cynthia Hand

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that highlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pre-publication 'can't-wait-to-read' selection is:

Title: The Last Time We Say Goodbye
Author: Cynthia Hand
Release Date: 10th February 2015
Publisher: Harper Teen
Find on: Goodreads

There's death all around us.
We just don't pay attention.
Until we do.

The last time Lex was happy, it was before. When she had a family that was whole. A boyfriend she loved. Friends who didn't look at her like she might break down at any moment.

Now she's just the girl whose brother killed himself. And it feels like that's all she'll ever be.

As Lex starts to put her life back together, she tries to block out what happened the night Tyler died. But there's a secret she hasn't told anyone-a text Tyler sent, that could have changed everything.

Lex's brother is gone. But Lex is about to discover that a ghost doesn't have to be real to keep you from moving on.

From New York Times bestselling author Cynthia Hand, The Last Time We Say Goodbye is a gorgeous and heart-wrenching story of love, loss, and letting go.

Why do I want to read this book? Pfft, Cynthia Hand is writing this book! I love her so so so much because Unearthly was beautiful and amazing. I'd love to see how Hand's first contemporary comes out!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

ARC Review: Floating Boy and The Girl Who Couldn't Fly by P.T. Jones

Title: Floating Boy and The Girl Who Couldn't Fly
Authors: Stephen Graham Jones & Paul Tremblay
Release Date: 11th November 2014
Publisher: Chizine Publications
Find on: Goodreads

Quick Review: Mary's life is going fine. Except for being a freshman in high school. And having anxiety attacks. And her dad having no job. So, introduce one boy who can fly, kidnap the little brother she's supposed to be babysitting, and drop a military quarantine on her town and that should make her anxiety completely disappear, right? Wrong!

Detailed Review: I received an ARC copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for my honest review

This is possibly the most negative review I've ever written. Frankly, it's the first bad review I've written so far in my blogging career.

Everything in this book ticked me off. Especially the main character, Mary. I get that she has anxiety, a mental disorder which I understand can be really bad plus the anxiety attacks. But, was it really necessary to bring it up all the time throughout the book? This just served to make me think that the writers wanted to make us think Mary was weak. I understand that anxiety can make you feel weak or helpless at times but I was hoping that maybe the obstacles that Mary had to go through could change something in her, somehow. The authors' attempt at depicting anxiety didn't go quite well.

Mary did possess some heroine in her at times, but those times were rare and I still didn't like her.

The rest of the characters were just a blur, like static in the background and I didn't even focus of them. It was just all over the place.

And the storytelling was just. I can't even describe it. There wasn't even a proper climax. There were some plot twists, but they didn't really do much to alter the course of the story. They weren't life-changing.

In the current YA industry, non life-altering plot twists simply wouldn't do it for many. When you've read lots of good books, your expectations will be higher, which is unfortunate for books like this.

All I could think was that two authors had this brilliant idea they thought could be used in a story and that was all. They seemed to give no thought to climaxes and resolutions or build-ups.

Don't get me wrong. Part of the reason why I requested this book on NetGalley was that I liked the idea as it seemed original and would be a really good and light break from all the heavy reading I'd done. But no matter how good the idea is, it's success also depends on the story telling and characters.

The authors didn't pull the story-telling and characters off quite well as they did with the original idea. Their writing style also dragged the story endlessly at times and this made me wonder at the point of continuing to read it, but I was persistent. Their attempt at using some humourous adjectives didn't go unnoticed but they were very much unappreciated. More straightforward writing would have done the trick. Sometimes simplicity is the key. I did almost DNF this book a few times, mind you.

There actually is romance, but to me it was pretty non-existent because like the characters, there was no development and lacked depth. It was exactly like all those romances that happen suddenly with no background and things building up to THAT moment. I know the authors really tried to make the romance seem more real, but I think the romance was unneccesary. A close friendship between Mary and Floating Boy would be so much more believable.

NOTE: I'm not saying you shouldn't read this book because opinions can vary and I'd like to hear your opinion if you've read it!

Brief Review: This book was mainly a disappointment. Originality was present in this book, but good storytelling skills and characters were sadly not, thus making it rather dull and plain. I did understand that the book was about a girl who didn't fit in with the rest and teaches us about standing out in a world where everyone was the same, but the authors really overdid it. Simplicity would have done it for Floating Boy and The Girl Who Couldn't Fly.

Final Rating: 2/5 'It was OK...'


This would be my advice to Mary,

You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them---Maya Angelou

Your Reviewer:

Friday, October 3, 2014

BLOGOVERSARY DAY 6: Danielle L. Jensen

Finally, we've reached the end!!! Today, I have an author who has been one of my favourites since her debut novel came out this year. She writes about trolls and prophecies and witches with some forbidden romance mixed in it... If you've got one author in mind, you may be right. If not, well let me introduce you to her.

Let's welcome Danielle L. Jensen, author of Stolen Songbird, the first book in the Malediction trilogy!!!

So here's the interview some of you must have been waiting for!!!

1. Trolls are not commonly featured in books. Why did you want to write about them in your books?

Stolen Songbird was inspired by a dream I had about the setting, and the trolls came into being as I built a story to fit my vision of Trollus. So they sort of created themselves rather than being creatures that I consciously set out to write about.

2. How would you feel if you were a troll?

Claustrophobic. I don’t like caves or confined spaces. But being magical would be pretty awesome. Sometimes I feel sad that I have no special powers.

3. What should we expect from Hidden Huntress?

It’s a lot darker than the first book. Stolen Songbird has many light-hearted moments, and Hidden Huntress doesn’t. All the characters have tough choices to make. It’s the hardest book I’ve ever written. I’ve posted the first page on my Goodreads blog, if anyone wants a bit of a teaser.  

4. How did you feel when you first published Stolen Songbird?

When I first found out that there were editors interested in my book, I cried. It’s really overwhelming to realize that a dream you’ve had for years is about to come true. Sometimes it still feels surreal.

5. What if Stolen Songbird was made into a movie? Which actors would you pick to act out your characters?

That would be pretty cool! I don’t like to say which actors resemble my vision of my characters, because I prefer readers to come up with their own mental images of what everyone looks like. But I LOVE hearing which actors readers think should be cast, so feel free to share your ideas

6. Why did you pick a French background for Cecile in the trilogy?

Primarily because it provided the atmosphere I wanted. I had the 18th century court of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette and the French revolution in mind while I was writing.

7. Will Tristan suffer a lot in Hidden Huntress? (I seriously hope not.)

He suffers physically, mentally, and emotionally. I’m very hard on him in this book. *evil laugh*

8. I'm really curious. Do you plan to have a love triangle somewhere in the story? (PLEASE NO I SHIP CECILE AND TRISTAN)

No love triangle in this trilogy. Those two have enough obstacles to overcome without me throwing another love interest into the mix.

9. Who do you think is the best character in Stolen Songbird?

My favourite characters are Marc and Anaïs. Marc, because he is a total sweetie despite all the unfortunate things that have happened to him, and Anaïs, because she is even more complex than Tristan and a total badass. She deserves her own novel.

10. If you had the chance to kidnap an author, who would it be?

Maggie Stiefvater, and I’d demand she take me on a road trip in her Camaro.

Interesting answers to my questions!! I loved interviewing you, Danielle! Thanks for agreeing to participate in this!!!

If you'd like to read my review of Stolen Songbird, click HERE!


Danielle was born and raised in Calgary, Canada. At the insistence of the left side of her brain, she graduated in 2003 from the University of Calgary with a bachelor’s degree in finance. But the right side of her brain has ever been mutinous; and in 2010, it sent her back to school to complete an entirely impractical English literature degree at Mount Royal University and to pursue publication. Much to her satisfaction, the right side shows no sign of relinquishing its domination.
You can find more about her and her books at her website:

And finally the last giveaway!!!! This is definitely something you wouldn't want to miss!!! Danielle will be giving away two signed Stolen Songbird swag packs!!! That sounds awfully delicious to me... Good luck! This is international!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway