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Showing posts from October, 2015

Portal To Nowhere

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Today's read was Portal 24 by Meredith Stroud.

Darin's is just a teen con-artist out on a date with his girlfriend when he's approached by a government agent who wants to recruit him. She shows him a picture. To persuade him? To scare him? Either way it can't be real because the Darius in that picture would almost certainly be dead, and he is very much alive.
Soon he realises that his mystery agent knew the future, and to save himself and his girlfriend he does the only thing he can. He joins Project Oberon, a top secret experiment that sends teens back in time to stop disasters... and not long after Darius joins, one strikes.
Ludd, evil mastermind, has used an EM weapon that could kill millions unless the team can go back and disarm it before it goes off. The only problem? Ludd knows about Oberon and will do anything to stop them. Even by testing their resolve by leaving them with no way back, and the possibility they will be lost in time.
I tried reading this book s…

Private Reader

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Guess what everyone?! I've done it again! Today I read Private LA by James Patterson and Mark Sullivan in the Private series... and no it's not the first one! It could be number seven in the Private series, or if you go by some sites I've looked at it's included in the Jack Morgan series which is within the Private series... who knows... my tip is to just read them in order of publication (don't follow my example). Yet again (thank you authors) this can be read on its own.

Jack Morgan doesn't want to take the latest case that's come to light, he's already on a job, but when he finds out that Hollywood's biggest couple have gone missing without a trace he agrees to take it on.
Information is difficult to come by, as well as Thom and Jennifer Harlow being missing, so are their three adopted children and their personal assistant. Called in by the executives who work with the Harlows Justine knows something isn't adding up as they dig deeper into t…

War Doctor

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Today's read was Doctor Who Engines of War by George Mann.

Cinder has engage a Dalek hunting party on her planet, Moldox, and things were getting a little bit dangerous until a strange wooden blue box fell from the sky crushing one of the last two mutant Daleks. As she approaches she's greeted with coughing and spluttering from inside as a grumpy old man appears over the edge. She's not convinced that a man who's fallen from the sky can be trusted, but when the remaining Dalek appears and he tells her to get in the blue box that's laying on its side in the rubble, she does.
"Bigger on the inside. Yes I know."
"It's the right way up."
"Hmmm, I wasn't expecting that one."
As Cinder and The Doctor explore her ruined planet they discover how low the Daleks will stoop to get the upper hand. As well as their plan to eradicate the Time Lords, that could crumble to entire universe.
I have never read a Doctor Who novel before, and I wa…

Reader's Instinct

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When will I learn that I need to check before reading a book to see whether it is in a series or not? I feel like it'll happen again before this week is up... so, I read Killer Instinct by Jennifer Lynn Barnes which is number TWO in The Naturals series.

When a young woman is murdered and displayed for all to see on her university campus something seems awfully familiar. Dean recognises his father's handy work, but he's been locked up for his crimes, so who is out there copying on of the country's most infamous serial killers?
Cassie, Dean, Michael, Lia and Sloane are all Naturals, a collection of teen experts in profiling, emotions, deception and analysis. There's a new FBI agent working with them, and she's aiming for change, can the team push this aside and use their skills to stop the killer?
So as I said at the top, I cleverly read a book out of order... again... I really should have learnt by now! Luckily for me this is another one that reads perfectly we…

Space, Where The Pirates Go To Play

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My latest read was Spacejackers by Huw Powell.

Jake Cutler doesn't know his family, the nearest thing he has are the cyber-monks on Remota that he was left with as a child eleven years ago. But now there's trouble, the monastery has some unwelcome visitors dressed a space pirates, and they've come for Jake.
During his escape from the planet Jake finds himself thrown together with a fortune seeker, a healer, an adolescent alien and a band of space pirates captained by the formidable Granny Leatherhead. Can they find Jake's mythical home planet? More importantly, can they stay alive long enough to try?
This book definitely ticks all the boxes for a children's fiction title. Space adventure. Pirates (in space). Quirky characters... and did I mention pirates in space!? It would appeal to boys around the 9/10+ range and is a great science fiction adventure... or "space opera" as I saw on Goodreads.
I enjoyed the story immensely, a quest in essence where Jake …

Emma Emulate

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"I have not left you. But I am gone.
Please carry on as normal. Love always, Hayley."


Time to waffle about Who Is Tom Ditto? by Danny Wallace.
When Tom's girlfriend Hayley "leaves" him it's an understatement to say he's confused. Has she gone or hasn't she? Tom starts to investigate, it's in his journalistic nature. His first lead... Andy, from the place... Not much to go on but it does lead him to a very odd meeting with some very odd people.
Nothing is making sense yet, what do these people do? And who is following him?
I don't know why this has been sitting in my TBR for so long. I had tried it a couple of times and failed early on. The book itself is two tales wound into one, a background tale (that I decline to talk about because spoilers sweetie) and Tom's tale of discovery. I did have to read back a few times during the background chapters because at the start I couldn't quite work out how they fit together, but it was an inte…

I See Dead People

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Today's read was Supervision by Alison Stine.

Esme has had a few problems.

She lives with her sister in New York but after the latest incident her sister is shipping her off to her Grandmother who neither girl has seen for years.
The trip is not something she's looking forward to, but it's even worse when she gets there. She arrives at the station only to see her grandmother get in her car and leave without her. Is she holding a grudge from when they moved away? Seem isn't sure as she starts to walk up to the house on her own. When she eventually gets there she heads straight to bed, tomorrow is another day, and that day means school.
If she thought it couldn't get worse, she was wrong.
Teachers don't acknowledge her, the students ignore her, someone even accidentally sits on her... but she does make two friends, Clara and Tom. So she's had a good day... right? Maybe not, because they're dead.
Inherited gifts make for a good storyline, it lets the auth…

Fear, The Silent Killer

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I'm already a fan of Jeffrey Deaver, so when I saw Solitude Creek on Netgalley I had to give it a try. He produces consistently good books, and I binge read the Lincoln Rhyme series after seeing the film (knowing of course that they would be so much better). I had however only read one of the Kathryn Dance books (The Sleeping Doll) before I had a little holiday from reading crime novels. This is number four in the series, I'm sure I would have missed some things by not reading two and three, by on its own it is a very enjoyable read.

When a tragedy happens at a venue in Monterey Peninsula that leaves some dead and many injured it sends the community reeling. The patrons had come to have fun, but when they smell smoke and the alarm is raised, panic ensues. They run from the supposed scene of the fire only to find that the fire exits are blocked. Fear takes over. Panic follows, and by the time they discover there's no fire it's too late, the stampede has killed them.
Ka…

View From The Country

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It takes travelling over 4000 miles to realise what you needed was to see something beautiful.
Yesterday I got on a plane at Gatwick and flew to Antigua. Nothing really beats flying in over the islands and seeing the bright and unusual houses and huts. Oh wait... When you come off the plane they are playing steel drums, which has to be one of my favourite sounds ever. Oh wait... This morning, because I'm still on English time I got up and went out on the balcony at 4am, all you can hear is the sound of nature: crickets chirping, water dripping on the leaves... the closer you listen the more you hear. The water shimmers with the moonlight, the sky is perfectly clear and filled with stars and just the faint glow of lights across the bay.
Some times humans and nature can do wonderful things together. *contented sign*

Writing YA: John Boyne & Andy Mulligan

Firstly I'll confess that I have not read books by either of these authors. I can hear the gasps of shock now. As an excuse, historical fiction isn't really my thing, I have considered picking up The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas more than once but have never quite made it past the front cover.
Over the few talks that I've been to it has been interesting to get the insight into what the path of each writer has been before becoming a published author. These two were no exception. Andy Mulligan worked in the theatre and was happily made redundant, he then went travelling and eventually became a teacher. Throughout this all he was writing and came across his agent through the school. John Boyne had done a writing degree and wanted to be around books while he wrote so he got a job in Waterstones [I'll forgive him!] where he got to encounter a lot of famous authors and other book professionals.
Both authors have had similar experiences through their lives, that have seeped int…

An Appreciation of Children's Literature

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Last night I saw my fourth Bath Children's Literature Festival talk, this one was all about how brilliant children's writing is. For those of you who didn't know that... it's a fact. A great panel led by editor Danny Hahn who was joined by authors David Almond [the man who has won pretty much everything], Sally Gardner and Pushkin Press publisher Adam Freudenheim.

There were lots of great points made, but again I'm going to streamline them so as not to waffle... yes, yes we all know I'm going to do that anyway.

Listening to how Adam decided to launch the Pushkin Press children's list was one of the most interesting things. He was originally working with Penguin Classics and a lot of the work involved in that was translating books for the range. Looking at the range of children's books there are these days very few are translated from other languages compared to adult fiction, which in itself has very few translated books. So many fantastic stories are …