Monday, 23 May 2016

Books I Want to Buy and Why #11

I'm starting to run out of books on my wishlist for this series! Quick! Recommend me some books! It's time for Books I Want to Buy and Why #11, the series where I show you eight books I want to buy, and tell you why I want to buy them.

This weeks eight are...

The Nameless One by Chris Riddell & Paul Stewart
Last week I talked about the authors who make up the majority of my collection and Chris Riddell & Paul Stewart made the list with their Muddle Earth books and The Edge Chronicles. I've been wanting to re-read and actually finish this series for a while now because I never completed it as a kid, and I have some gaps in the series. This fills one of them!

Highway to Hell by Max Brallier
A couple of years ago my christmas present from my brother was themed around zombies, there was a Rick Grimes action figure and Max Bralliers first book; Can You Survive the Zombie Apocalypse? It's an interactive book where you make choices and see where it gets you. I love it. So, obviously, when I found out a companion book was coming out- you bet it joined the list.

The Twelfth Card by Jeffery Deaver
Another book that was added when I was organising my most owned authors post, I want to read the Lincoln Rhyme series in it's entirety and to do that- kinda need the sixth book that I either never had or has been lost to the book stealing storage unit. I'll probably wait until I actually start my read of the series to buy it though.

Day Shift by Charlaine Harris
This is the second book in Charlaine Harris's new trilogy, the first book actually featured in Books I Want to Buy and Why #6 and then I got it for Christmas. But I've been holding of reading it because I'm not great at waiting for new books so I'm waiting closer to the release of book three, Night Shift, which isn't out in paperback until next year although the hardcover is out already I think. Damn my need for series to match. Either way, I want Day Shift.

Murder Is Binding by Lorna Barrett
This is the first book in a cosy crime series set on a street of book stores! The main character sets up her own mystery book store, she's living the dream. Except for all the murder. I love reading about reading, it's one of the reasons I'm in the book blogging community, and I love cosy crime so this is right up my alley.

Glaze by Kim Curran
This is a YA Dystopian book surrounding social media. And I had been watching a lot of Black Mirror when I found it so I added it to my wishlist and kind of forgot about it until I made this list! It still really peaks my interest though. We're at a time where social media is evolving so fast. I remember thinking Instagram would never take off. It promises to be an interesting read and it's been a while since I read any YA.

Tess of the D'Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy
As a kid, I read a book that had the main character talking to someone about this book. I can't remember what the book was, but I always remembered that conversation. I don't know much else about it, but I've never read anything by Hardy before and c'mon- the Penguin English Library cover.

Killer Instinct by S E Green
A couple weeks back I was browsing Sarah's blog after meeting her down in London at the Pierce Brown event at Hachette, and came across her review for Killer Instinct. It is one of my goals to write a review where the person immediately needs a book, because Sarah nailed it. I was on Amazon in a second and adding it to the list!

What's on your wish list? Have you read any of these books?

Saturday, 21 May 2016

Book Review: HEX by Thomas Olde Heuvelt!

I don't think I've been excited like this about a new release in a while. A stand alone debut horror novel? Sign me up. And then when it arrived, praise from John Connolly and Sarah Lotz on the press release! And we know I love them both. It sat on my bedside table for two days while I struggled through some other books then I couldn't wait anymore and picked it up.

Whoever is born here, is doomed to stay until death. Whoever comes to stay, never leaves.

Welcome to Black Spring, the seemingly picturesque Hudson Valley town haunted by the Black Rock Witch, a seventeenth-century woman whose eyes and mouth are sewn shut. Blind and silenced, she walks the streets and enters homes at will. She stands next to children's beds for nights on end. So accustomed to her have the townsfolk become that they often forget she's there. Or what a threat she poses. Because if the stitches are ever cut open, the story goes, the whole town will die.

The curse must not be allowed to spread. The elders of Black Spring have used high-tech surveillance to quarantine the town. Frustrated with being kept in lockdown, the town's teenagers decide to break the strict regulations and go viral with the haunting. But, in so doing, they send the town spiraling into a dark nightmare.

For me, I didn't find HEX* as spooky as I was expecting. Yes, a witch with her eyes and mouth sewed up is pretty creepy. And living in a town with no access to Twitter would be horrifying. But there's a couple uses of autism and mental disabilities as the butt of the joke in the narrative, which is scarier to me than any witch. It's something I'm picking up a lot these days and it really disappoints me. There's also a lot of- I'm honestly not sure of the term- sexual violence? There's a pattern of every time a woman in the book was attacked, witch or not, there was a lot of groping. 

On the other hand, I can't deny the creepy vibes I got sometimes. It was like a mild throwback to how I felt two years ago when I read The Three for the first time. I read through the first two thirds in two days. And it's interesting that the last third was added on when it was translated because I felt that the whole thing slowed down and ran a bit off course at that point. I think reading a translation of the original Dutch book would be a completely different experience.

I'm a fan of any book that uses True Blood as part of a valid argument; "Seriously, in True Blood the vampires came out of the closet." And the family relationship was super interesting. This book actually looks at the parent who does favour one kid over the other, no matter what they say. Something I've always worried about for when I have future children. The brutal honesty of how people act, how they are deep down, is something that this book excels at. If that's your jam, this will keep you up through the night.

And lastly, the technology aspect of it was great. If anyone has seen the original Scream films, and then the modern show where technology like Twitter and YouTube is so key to the narrative, this book felt like the new version of so many great horror books from the nineties. Videos, websites, instant messaging, so much of that is key to our world and seeing it in a novel makes it feel real.

Warner Brothers is adapting the book for TV and that, I cannot wait for. I think it's going to be interesting to see this world on-screen. Especially if they go with the same vibes that they work with in Supernatural and Person of Interest.

Want to pick up a copy? The hardcover is available now! And the paperback is coming out in October!

Suddenly he was furious at every ounce of common sense that was trying to reason him out of his intention.

Will you be reading this book? What do you think of modern technology in novels?

*I was sent this book for review. It hasn't changed my opinion

Monday, 16 May 2016

My Most Owned Authors!

I moved all of my books from my bedroom because of my redecorating. It took- a lot of time but certain patterns emerged as certain authors made taller piles than others. So before I moved them all back, I thought I'd count them all up, take pictures, almost break bones tripping while carrying them around, and show you who my most owned authors are!

From least to most...

Chris Riddell and Paul Stewart - 12 books

5. Chris Riddell and Paul Stewart - 12 Books
The Edge Chronicles were my favourite books as a tween. I loved the world and the way the different trilogies all worked together. But I never finished them despite buying the last book over a year ago. I'm missing a couple, and have doubles of others, so at some point I'm going to buy the rest and marathon the series. Maybe this autumn!

Anthony Horowitz - 15 Books

3. Anthony Horowitz - 15 Books
Another author I loved as a tween. A lot of my books are actually hand-me-downs from my older brother and I grew up loving Alex Rider with all his gadgets, and the Diamond Brothers. But, again, I never finished either series so I don't know how it ends up for the characters. Anthony Horowitz is a great author though so I might try and finish these two series. Especially with the complete Alex Rider collection on The Book People for £12.99! On the other hand, the Power of Five series might be vacating the premises soon.

Stephen King - 22 books

3. Stephen King - 22 Books
Whelp. I'm starting to realise that 'most owned' doesn't always translate on my read shelf. I do love Stephen King, despite only reading two of his books in the past two years and 'pausing' another. He's my go-to for horror, I just haven't been feeling horror lately. This will probably change soon though because my soulmatepal is currently reading The Shining and keeps trying to get me to start it.

Charlaine Harris - 27 books

2. Charlaine Harris - 27 Books
Is anyone surprised? I'm not. Off this entire list, Charlaine Harris is also my most read author at 21 books. I've completed her Aurora Teagarden series, her Sookie Stackhouse series and I started her Harper Connolly series last month. Out of all of these, she is probably the author where I plan to read all of her books eventually. I love her worlds. I love her characters. I love her writing.

Jeffery Deaver - 28+ Books

1. Jeffery Deaver - 28+ Books
I had all my Deaver books in one pile while I painted but they kept falling down until they were in two piles, not including those on my read shelf. I definitely own more than 28 actually because there are gaps in my Lincoln Rhyme collection (like book 2 which is why I haven't re-started it yet) and I know I own them! They're lost to the house. I read the Kathryn Dance books in December and January and he's such a great crime author. Well deserving to be #1 and a lovely guy.

Who are your most owned authors?

Sunday, 15 May 2016

Beauty Review: Lush's Sunflower Bubble Bar!

This bubble bar is huge! It's about the size of my hand stretched out. Today's post is another review of the Lush Oxford Street exclusives I hauled here. I'm really liking beauty posts and reviews again so it'll hopefully become a regular thing on Sundays. Anyway, the Sunflower bubble bar...

I didn't even know Lush made the black paper bags this big until I got this. It's twice the size of the regular ones.

Since this bubble bar is so big, and flat which is super convenient for dividing it up, I got three baths out of it. I might've been able to get four but I liked the scent way too much to risk a lame bath from not putting enough in. It's really orange-y, citrus-y and basically what you'd expect from a bright orange bubble bar. Unfortunately it just doesn't come out in the bath. You can't smell it at all.

The bath was fine; yellow, bubbles, but I buy Lush for the scents and this let me down. Brightside is a bubble bar I've tried before with the same scent but actually works if this appeals.

Sunflower is a Lush Oxford Street Exclusive but it might pop up in the Kitchen sometime and it's £4.95!

Have you ever tried the Sunflower? Did you get scent from it?

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