Thursday, 24 September 2015


Presenting 'S.' by J.J. Abrams & Doug Dorst.

Here is the summary of the book:

One book. Two readers. A world of mystery, menace, and desire.

A young woman picks up a book left behind by a stranger. Inside it are his margin notes, which reveal a reader entranced by the story and by its mysterious author. She responds with notes of her own, leaving the book for the stranger, and so begins an unlikely conversation that plunges them both into the unknown.

THE BOOK: Ship of Theseus, the final novel by a prolific but enigmatic writer named V. M. Straka, in which a man with no past is shanghaied onto a strange ship with a monstrous crew and launched onto a disorienting and perilous journey.

THE WRITER: Straka, the incendiary and secretive subject of one of the world’s greatest mysteries, a revolutionary about whom the world knows nothing apart from the words he wrote and the rumours that swirl around him.

THE READERS: Jennifer and Eric, a college senior and a disgraced grad student, both facing crucial decisions about who they are, who they might become, and how much they’re willing to trust another person with their passions, hurts, and fears.
S. , conceived by filmmaker J. J. Abrams and written by award-winning novelist Doug Dorst, is the chronicle of two readers finding each other in the margins of a book and enmeshing themselves in a deadly struggle between forces they don’t understand. It is also Abrams and Dorst’s love letter to the written word. 

A story with a story within a story. Brain-child of two creative geniuses J.J. Abrams & Doug Dorst and a development team too, 'S.' boasts of a successful full package of a mystery. It is basically Inception as a book because like the movie, S. works on multiple levels to bring in the packaged deal of creativity and mystery. But "how to read it?" that's the million dollar question .... We'll get to it soon ..... read on.....

S. holds a multi-tiered creation in its elusive slipcase covering. At the base is an old library book, 'Ship of Theseus' by a well known author(fictional), shrouded in mystery and intrigue, V.M. Straka. About a man named 'S' who wakes up without any knowledge of his before and goes on a very mysteriously strange journey for answers. Then there is the translator for the book who is apparently in a relationship with the author. It is unclear whether they ever meet but within the text of the book, they leave coded messages and ciphers in the main text and footnotes for readers and plainly communicating with each other through their words.

Up on level we have two readers of the book, Jen, an undergrad and former teacher-aide Eric conversing back and forth within the wide margins and spaces of the book. They conversation ranges from, about the book, the author Straka and all the conspiracies and theories regarding his books, eventually life in and their own feelings as we progress through the pages in varied quality of colored ink & lead to dictate the changes of time and their own realizations of romance through the pages.

The final, the top tier belongs to the number of extras and media add-ons: photos, letters, newspaper articles, postcards and one very detailed map drawn on a napkin, stowed away amongst the pages of the book brilliantly styled to mimic the look of an old forgotten library book with yellowed pages. Even the letters and the other extras boasts of a perfect look for the package, smudged ink, creased pages, coffee stains and the map on napkin drawn in black ink pen. Really goes to show the level of perfection, the publishing team put in, leaving no stone upturned.

And finally, we readers get the full package ready to be awed and astounded by its sheer brilliance. Taking it all in. This is a book that needs careful consideration before we begin reading. How to read it? ..... Well You can go about it your own way. You can finish the main text first, the read the margins and the extras. Go by the just now mentioned idea chapter by chapter or if you can then fire through it all simultaneously. Ultimately this is a gem that you will definitely never forget, the novel adventure of discovering every nook and cranny of this book's mysteries is something everyone should experience.

You can always visit this site here to know about all things Staka -

"A one of its kind package of intrigue"

Genre :     Adult Fiction, Mystery, Thriller

Publisher: Mulholland Books 

Release Date: 29th October, 2013

My Copy: publisher & edelweiss

Rate:             5/5 (It was Amazing)

Buy:         Amazon | Book Depository 

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

The Bane Chronicles

Presenting The Bane Chronicles by Cassandra Clare, Sarah Rees Brennan & Maureen Johnson.

Here is the summary of the book:

Fans of The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices can get to know warlock Magnus Bane like never before in this collection of New York Times bestselling tales, in print for the first time with an exclusive new story and illustrated material.

This collection of eleven short stories illuminates the life of the enigmatic Magnus Bane, whose alluring personality, flamboyant style, and sharp wit populate the pages of the #1 New York Times bestselling series, The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices.

Originally released one-by-one as e-only short stories by Cassandra Clare, Maureen Johnson, and Sarah Rees Brennan, this compilation presents all ten together in print for the first time and includes a never-before-seen eleventh tale, as well as new illustrated material.

The enigmatic and flamboyant warlock, Magnus Bane. He has lived for a long time and he has grazed his presence in both The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices series in big ways. He can also be found in the margins of The Shadowhunter's Codex with his cool eccentricity. Suffice it to say his alluring personality and sharp wit always sets us intrigued and then as you would have it, authors Cassandra Clare, Maureen Johnson and Sarah Rees Brennan put up 11 short stories about various instances and moments of his life.

First released as separate ebooks and later published in this anthology titled The Bane Chronicles with Godfrey Gao (who played Bane in the Mortal Instruments movie) on the cover. i actually waited to finish City of Heavenly Fire, the last TMI book before taking this up and that had been the best decision I made because I've had the time of my life reading this book.

Laughter, sadness, conflict, giddiness, the sense of the bitter sweet. Magus' story brought so much out of us. Be it in Peru, England or New York, Magus' history brings out a sense of awe in us readers and fans of this fictional world. There were some favorites among the 11 and some were less but really, I have never laughed so much as I did while reading about the colorful life he led.

My favorite moments were definitely with his fellow warlock friends Ragnor Fell and Catarina Loss, Santiago (vampire) and his first date with Alec. Great job ladies. Oh I am definitely looking forward to the new series, The Dark Artifices to begin and the Shadowhunters tv series.

"An express look into the life and times of the flamboyant fan favorite Warlock, Magnus Bane"

Genre :      Young Adult, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, Anthology

PublisherMargaret K. McElderry

Release Date: 11th November, 2014

My Copy: bought (paperback)

Rate:              5/5 (It was Awesome)

Other Books from Cassandra Clare:
                       (review links)
Buy:           Amazon | Book Depository 

The Mortal Instruments #6 City of Heavenly Fire

Presenting The Mortal Instruments #6 City of Heavenly Fire by Cassandra Clare.

Here is the summary of the book:

In this dazzling and long-awaited conclusion to the acclaimed Mortal Instruments series, Clary and her friends fight the greatest evil they have ever faced: Clary's own brother.

Sebastian Morgenstern is on the move, systematically turning Shadowhunter against Shadowhunter. Bearing the Infernal Cup, he transforms Shadowhunters into creatures out of nightmare, tearing apart families and lovers as the ranks of his Endarkened army swell.

The embattled Shadowhunters withdraw to Idris - but not even the famed demon towers of Alicante can keep Sebastian at bay. And with the Nephilim trapped in Idris, who will guard the world against demons?

When one of the greatest betrayals the Nephilim have ever known is revealed, Clary, Jace, Isabelle, Simon, and Alec must flee - even if their journey takes them deep into the demon realms, where no Shadowhunter has set foot before, and from which no human being has ever returned...

Love will be sacrificed and lives lost in the terrible battle for the fate of the word in the thrilling final installment of the classic urban fantasy series The Mortal Instruments!

All good things come to an end. As such 'City of Heavenly Fire' marks the end of our beloved Mortal Instruments series. I know I am reading and reviewing it much later than I had anticipated (seeing as I bought the book last year) but somewhere in my mind I just knew I had to prolong it however long I could. So I re-read the books from 'City of Bones' to 'City of Lost Souls' before I finally dived into this 700 pages long tome and what a full-filling experience it was too..... And I wouldn't have it any other way.

Cassandra Clare has clearly outdone herself. And while I despair at the height difference amongst my Mortal Instruments paperbacks. Seeing as the first 5 books are later editions and much more compact in size and City of Heavenly Fire being of more bigger font and big spacing. But at the end of it, what's inside matters and I wouldn't have it any different.

It has everything an epic conclusion needs. Expertly tying the events from both the Clockwork Princess epilogue, to the events that transpired throughout the Mortal Instruments series. The perfect culmination of past, present and future. City of Heavenly Fire comes to us even more tenser and with much darker overtures than its predecessors. While comedy is in a bit of a shorter supply here pretty much all the characters find the time to show their wits and throw down sarcastic one-liners when the moment calls it. Even Alec jokes here and that's saying something.

Be it Jace, Clary, Alec, Isabelle, Simon, Magnus, or any of the other characters we come across throughout this series. As I already stated they all get their moment to shine through. None of them are left out and none of them are spared. Everyone of them have come a long way from what they were at first and carry the plot forward in their innumerable swagger and strength. And Clare manages keep the manuscript well balanced heady with details and descriptions and still find time to introduce us to new characters that bring their own importance to the plot.

As expected of the genre, there is action aplenty. This is a war that radiates its own darkness and while we pray for the safety of all of the characters we have ever come across in this expansive Shadow world, the casualties are many. Some more important to us than others, making us tear up at the cruelty of it all. War breeds victims, but war breeds heroes too. As Clary and the motley crew of the Shadowhunters and Vampire dare to end the untraceable demon realm to bring their loves ones back and take the fight to Sebastian without any thoughts of self-preservation.

Amidst action and tension, there is redemption too. The author's true mettle is portrayed when he/she can nor only make us like/dislike these characters but also turn the tables on them and make us sympathize with the most hated of them all as well. Jonathan Morgenstern was a dream, someone that never really got the chance to live before Sebastian took hold. I and i'm sure lots of others out there may never forgive him for what he did but ...... he was guilty in the end and made us wonder about a life that never got to see the light and stayed with the realm of dreams. Cassandra Clare definitely deserves a shout out for such levels of dimensional-ity, she blew into her characters.

That said, while i am sad to see the end of this series but also excited to begin the next series of this immersive world, The Dark Artifices with a fresh set of characters and the tv adaption of the mortal instruments series, called Shadowhunter.

"A electrifying and rip-roaring conclusion"

Genre :      Young Adult, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, Romance

PublisherMargaret K. McElderry

Release Date: 27th May, 2014

My Copy: bought (paperback)

Rate:              5/5 (It was Awesome)

Other Books from Cassandra Clare:
                       (review links)
Buy:           Amazon | Book Depository 

Monday, 21 September 2015

Magisterium #2 The Copper Gauntlet

Presenting Magisterium #2 The Copper Gauntlet by Holly Black & Cassandra Clare.

Here is the summary of the book:

Callum Hunt’s summer break isn’t like other kids’. His closest companion is a Chaos-ridden wolf, Havoc. His father suspects him of being secretly evil. And, of course, most kids aren’t heading back to the magical world of the Magisterium in the fall.

It’s not easy for Call . . . and it gets even harder after he checks out his basement and discovers that his dad might be trying to destroy both him and Havoc.

Call escapes to the Magisterium -- but things only intensify there. The Alkahest -- a copper gauntlet capable of separating certain magicians from their magic -- has been stolen. And in their search to discover the culprit, Call and his friends Aaron and Tamara awaken the attention of some very dangerous foes -- and get closer to an even more dangerous truth.

As the mysteries of the Magisterium deepen and widen, bestselling authors Holly Black and Cassandra Clare take readers on an extraordinary journey through one boy’s conflict -- and a whole world’s fate.

Callum Hunt alongwith his chaos-ridden wolf, Havoc are home for the summer vacations and he is worried after the events of events of the 1st book, that he is evil and suspects that his father does too. In lieu of a suspicious incident Call runs away from and finds that while he was having such a hard time, his friends Tamara and Aaron were together, partying at her grand estate. And Aaron was being celebrated as the Makar.

Having set the stage with The Iron Trial, the sequel looks towards a next year at the Magisterium and explores further the relationship between the three friends. Of course, we don't know what goes on in Aaron or Tamara's minds seeing as Call s the point of focus. It is surreal to see him more sure of himself this time. While he worries what his friends would think of him when his secret comes out and would not want him around anymore. He works hard despite his leg impairment and supports his friends ...... Which is definitely not someone evil would do ...... or so his mind categorizes.

After spending the vacations in luxury, Call, Tamara and Aaron are back for their second year of school. And of course things go spiraling off one after another. Alkahest, a very powerful copper gauntlet has been stolen, that has the power of killing the Makar. While everyone rushes to put blame on his father, Call is sure Alistair stole it to cure him. With one solid mission on hand Call, Tamara, Aaron and tag-along Jasper runaway from school to try and retrieve the Alkahest and prove that Alistair is innocent.

While the first book showed life at the school, The Copper Gauntlet spans out to the magical community. Be it Tamara's intriguing family and their aristocratic ways, magical politics or encounters with members who were once part of the Magisterium. And really not everyone of them have good intentions towards this motley group. Wonder duo Cassandra Clare and Holly Black build on a convincing sequel. Its whats happening outside that matters this time. With all of its action, the twists and turns, The Copper Gauntlet manages to keep our attention. Here's to keeping our fingers crossed for 'The Cosmos Blade'.

"A sequel of action & adventure. Of Magic, its conflicts and the rising war"

Genre :      Young Adult, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, Adventure, Middle Grade

PublisherScholastic Press

Release Date: 1st September, 2015

My Copy: publisher & edelweiss

Rate:              5/5 (It was Awesome)

Other Books from Cassandra Clare (I haven't read anything of Holly Black yet):
                       (review links)
Buy:           Amazon | Book Depository 

Sunday, 20 September 2015

Recorder and Randsell Volume 1

Presenting Recorder and Randsell Volume 1 by Meme Higashiya.

Here is the summary of the book:

Miyagawa Atsumi and her younger brother Atsushi are your typical siblings - she's a high school sophomore dealing with exams, he's a 5th grader who only wants to run off and play with his friends. School's hard enough as it is, but things are even tougher for these two: Atsumi is so tiny she's still mistaken for a little kid, while Atsushi is so tall people assume he's a full-grown man!

Yonkoma. This is 4 cell manga styled quite different from your regular manga reaing of back-front and right to left. But read in the order of top to bottom. The story looks to siblings Atsumi and Atsushi. Older sister Atsumi is a sophomore in High School and younger brother Atsushi is a fifth grader. Although she is older, she has the body of a kid and he the 5th grader, that of a full grown man is often mistaken to be an adult.

This leads to loads of hilarious misunderstandings regarding Atsushi that ends him in prison mistaken for a pedophile walking with his sister or his peers because they are tinier than he is ..... And there you go that is the point to this volume and we get many repeat performances of it. It is quite hilarious at first but then after sometime becomes monotonous and doesn't really bring us to laughter much.

I lost interest after sometime and leaved through till the final cell ...... Its name is actually Recorder & Satchel (which makes more sense) and I don't see what the need was for changing the name to Recorder and Randsell.

"Hilarious misunderstandings"

Genre :     Graphic Novel, Manga

Publisher: Takeshobo 

Release Date: 15th September, 2015

My Copy: publisher & netgalley

Rate:             2/5 (It was Ok)

Buy:         Amazon

The Flash Season Zero

Presenting The Flash Season Zero.

Here is the summary of the book:

An all-new series taking place the world of smash-hit TV show The Flash! Follow the adventures of Barry Allen as he struggles to balance his job as a police crime scene investigator, his unrequited crush on Iris West (who also happens to be his boss' daughter) and his new life as Central City's guardian angel.


Okay I am going to sound like a broken record when I say that reading comics was never really my thing, occasionally more like. But give me cartoons or movie of comics and i'll take it any day. And the Flash is one such. The CW first announced 'The Flash', we asked and suspected how it would be because it is a spin-off of 'Arrow' and then it began and it blazed through all of our expectations and came out the winner.

Now, the wait for Season 2 is almost over but to pass the days, they have given us "The Flash Season Zero". 12 stories to whet our appetite for the coming season. There is no set timeline here featuring new meta-humans and episodes we didn't see on the first season. Introducing even more bizarre subjects with just the all-round fun and exciting that is the Flash. Let the speed force be with you Barry Allen ..... Excitedly counting days for the show to return.

"Exciting and all round fun adventures of the Flash"

Genre :     Graphic Novel, Tie-in

Publisher: DC Comics

Release Date: 29th September, 2015

My Copy: publisher & netgalley

Rate:             4/5 (Really Liked It)

Buy:         Amazon | Book Depository 

Friday, 18 September 2015


Presenting Mirrored by Alex Flinn.

Here is the summary of the book:

A modern, multi-generational tale of Kendra, the witch from "Snow White," who trains Violet, an ugly, lonely, and heartbroken girl in the 1980s who transforms herself into "the fairest one of all" but still cannot win Greg's heart, and Celine, Greg's daughter with Violet's high school rival, Jennifer.

Alex Flinn returns with yet another fairytale re-telling. This time it is 'Snow White & the Seven Dwarfs' spanning across generations. The YA genre is rife with numerous best selling titles in the re-tellings category. Some veer to extremes, some portray 'what ifs' and then there is Alex Flinn whose particular brand of re-telling comes fairly grounded in its origins, set within modern twists. Mirrored is one such tale with a gorgeous cover and an equally delightful story.

Don't judge a book by its cover, meant in the most intangible sense. This is the story of Violet and Celine. Violet is the step-mother and Celine, the Snow White of the story. Added modernity to the mix, these two in their own ages have been bullying victims. But what matters is how you deal with what was done to you. Where Violet chose bitter vengeance, Celine chose to look past it all. And Goose ..... he was just the sweetest guy in the short size.

Everyone of the characters gets their own voice in this story and they all play their role perfectly. You just can't help but sympathize with Violet but you also don't agree with her going to the dark side. Celine plays on our emotions perfectly. She is smart, good and (tries) to see good in everyone. The rollicking emotional twists and hi-jinks makes this a perfect re-telling because really I finished it in one sitting so you can see that I was invested in what was going on here.

But it felt a bit too simple. In a world where tv shows like Once Upon A Time exists it is pretty hard to measure up to its caliber because at the base of it, that show is a Snow White re-telling (foremost) with the add-on's and a good one too so sadly Mirrored gets 2 stars less from me.

"A subtle and sweet re-telling of Snow White and the Evil Queen"

Genre :      Young Adult, Paranormal, Romance, Fairy tale re-telling


Release Date: 15th September, 2015

My Copy: publisher & edelweiss

Rate:              3/5 (Liked It)

Other Books by the author (review links):
                Bewitching: The Kendra Chronicles

Buy:           Amazon | Book Depository 

Ash & Bramble

Presenting Ash & Bramble by Sarah Prineas.

Here is the summary of the book:

When the glass slipper just doesn’t fit…

The tale of Cinderella has been retold countless times. But what you know is not the true story.

Pin has no recollection of who she is or how she got to the Godmother’s fortress. She only knows that she is a Seamstress, working day in and out to make ball gowns fit for fairy tales. But she longs to forsake her backbreaking servitude and dares to escape with the brave young Shoemaker.

Pin isn’t free for long before she’s captured again and forced to live the new life the Godmother chooses for her—a fairy tale story, complete with a charming prince—instead of finding her own happily ever after.

Sarah Prineas’s bold fairy tale retelling is a dark and captivating world where swords are more fitting than slippers, young shoemakers are just as striking as princes, and a heroine is more than ready to rescue herself before the clock strikes midnight.

'Happily Ever After' turned on its head. Sarah Prineas' Ash & Bramble brings forth a new twist on a classical favorite fairytale of Cinderella. Look back to the history of fairytale, you'll find that they always had a dark side to them, not like the tuned down kids friendly version we read today. Playing against the all too perfect fantasies of fairytales where the girl gets to marry the Prince.

Stories are bigger than us and help us understand the shape of our lives and the nature of the endings. But what if 'Story' is an intangible entity that demands perfection and fulfillment ..... what would you do when Fairy Godmother turns out to be your worst enemy altogether.

Ash & Bramble follows Seamtress, 'Pin' and Shoemaker named 'Shoe' forced like many others of their professions and skill-sets to work under the dictatoship of the Fairy Godmother and her curiously misshapen overseers. Day by Day they sit at their work manufacturing fine dresses, glass coffins, dancing shoes, bed with layers of mattresses and the pesky little pea within never raising their voices. None of them know who they really are just that a vast 'Nothing' persists in the before. It is a harsh life where you are only kept for continous labor without any interaction or affliations. But Pin and Shoe manage to escape but the horrible reality comes gradually as they are forcefully pitted in a story ..... Just how far does the Godmother's power go ..... Can they ever be free of her now that there is a Prince in this triangle too.

Pin is our Cinderella with a backbone and definitely does not like the color blue at all. She goes out of her way to rebel against what she is meant to do and sometimes comes on too strong with her forceful persona .....but she is determined to gain freedom. She is clearly important to the story but it is Shoe who tugs at out hearts. Forced into mess reluctantly, his personality shines through, Overtly cautious at first, he shows a sound mind dealing with danger and is not afraid to jump into danger for Pin.

The plot grows through many levels to reach this conclusion. Dragging in the beginning. The story grows more and more complex as intricate details are revealed and if you miss out. You can't figure out what is happening. Some facts are just taken at face value, while a number of secondary characters are left underdeveloped. I really pulled through to see what happens to Pin & Shoe, although their romance seemed wooden and did not interest me one bit.

While I enjoyed the plot well enough and found a lot of similarities to the anime 'Princess Tutu' regarding the concept of the 'Story'. Sara Prineas did her best with her ideas, driving her message perfectly across. I just have one more bone to pick on here - on the cover. The publishers have long list of YA books in their name that sport eye-catching gorgeous covers ..... but this one gets only plains thorns & a girl in a modern red dress fleeing with a white background (I understand the reason for the red now)...... Though the shoes were sexy..... Couldn't they have put a little bit of efforts on this ..... Anyways i'd say give this book a chance, you may end up liking or not liking it but it does deserve a once over.

"A fairy tale with a unique darkness"

Genre :     Young Adult, Fairytale re-telling, Romance

Publisher: Harper Teen 

Release Date: 15th September, 2015

My Copy: publisher & edelweiss

Rate:             3/5 (Liked It)

Buy:         Amazon | Book Depository 

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Manga Classics: Emma

Presenting Manga Classics: Emma by Jane Austen, Stacy King, Crystal Chan, Po Tse.

Here is the summary of the book:

Just in time for the 200th Anniversary, Manga Classics: Emma brings Jane Austen's classic tale of youthful folly and romantic exuberance to a modern audience with this beautiful, new manga adaptation. The impulsive match-making of Emma Woodhouse delivers both humor and heartache through the gorgeous artwork of manga-ka Po Tse (Manga Classics: Pride and Prejudice). - Manga Classics editions feature classic stories, faithfully adapted and illustrated in manga style, and available in both hardcover and softcover editions. Proudly presented by UDON Entertainment and Morpheus Publishing.

Another classic that gets the manga treatment. Following in the series after Les Miz, Pride & Prejudice, The Scarlet Letter & Great Expectations comes Emma. Read in the usual format of back to front, Right to left and anticlockwise, this one like all the others in this series sports gorgeous artwork and illustration. 'Emma' coincidentally happens to be one classic that is quite easy to get into as well and her attempts at matchmaking have always been hilarious to say the least.

So it was a bit disconcerting at first to see the characters sporting such outrageously hilarious expressions but I got used to it quickly and enjoyed reading Emma's escapades throughout the story. Another great offering to all readers alike looking to re-discover something in this timeless Jane Austen classic. Great job by Stacy King, Po Tse and Crystal Chan translating Miss Austen's manuscript into this fun and intricately detailed and gorgeous adaptation.

"A gorgeous and funny manga adaptation"

Genre :      Graphic Novel, Manga, Classic

PublisherUdon Entertainment

Release Date: 12th May, 2015

My Copy: publisher and netgalley

Rate:              5/5 (It was Amazing)

Books in the series (review links):
            Manga Classics: Les Misérables
                  Manga Classics: Pride & Prejudice
                  Manga Classics: The Scarlet Letter

Buy:           Amazon

Monday, 14 September 2015

Damage Done

Presenting Damage Done by Amanda Panitch.

Here is the summary of the book:

22 minutes separate Julia Vann’s before and after.

Before: Julia had a twin brother, a boyfriend, and a best friend.

After: She has a new identity, a new hometown, and memories of those twenty-two minutes that refuse to come into focus. At least, that’s what she tells the police.

Now that she’s Lucy Black, she's able to begin again. She's even getting used to the empty bedroom where her brother should be. And her fresh start has attracted the attention of one of the hottest guys in school, a boy who will do anything to protect her. But when someone much more dangerous also takes notice, Lucy's forced to confront the dark secrets she thought were safely left behind.

One thing is clear: The damage done can never be erased. It’s only just beginning. . . .

New beginnings. unreliable. Suspicious homicide. Advent of a psychopath. Amanda Panitch's debut Damage Done flings us beyond the aesthetic boundaries. Out of the comfort zone and into the confusing, uncomfortably scary zone. A big risk to take and it works hard to shock us and agreed to disagree it succeeds in its endeavors. Not only are these uncharted waters but they are boundaries (we know exist) we dare not cross. Damage Done does that and manages to enthrall us till the end.

Before she was Julia, After she is Lucy. Going in without any knowledge of the plot but only the hauntingly beautiful cover as front, it becomes quite clear that Lucy/Julia has a lot to hide. Her twin brother murdered  room full of people and left only her alone. That is suspicious enough. It is unclear what role she played in it as we see her lying and exploiting those around her to integrate into a new life.

The twin brother remains a looming dark presence till the end. We see through the flashbacks as he rows up feared by all but his sister. If literature today has taught anything its that nobody is born evil, sure for some it is said that they are born to be evil but its the situations that makes it such. Parental neglect, psychiatric's obsession to emulate his own needs upon the patient and the wrong environment goes a long way in bringing them here they come on. And as Panitch skillfully peels off layers of her story as we advance in, it becomes shockingly clear just what role Lucy played in her twin brother's life and what they hid together against the world.

So yes while the clues are there, the plot does succeed to shock us with its astounding revelations. Although the impact would have been much more profound if the secondary characters got the chance to shine as well but aside from that I didn't have any complaints with this book. Great start for Panitch. Damage Done provides a fresh outlook on psychological thriller and raises questions that we dare not ask ourselves.

"Dark and unsettling and all the more consuming"

Genre :     Young Adult, Contemporary, Thriller, Mystery

Publisher: Random House Books 

Release Date: 21st July, 2015

My Copy: publisher & netgalley

Rate:             4/5 (Really Liked It)

Buy:         Amazon | Book Depository 

Sunday, 13 September 2015

13 Days of Midnight

Presenting 13 Days of Midnight by Leo Hunt.

Here is the summary of the book:

When Luke Manchett's estranged father dies suddenly, he leaves his son a dark inheritance. Luke has been left in charge of his father's ghost collection: eight restless spirits. They want revenge for their long enslavement, and in the absence of the father, they're more than happy to take his son. It isn't fair, but you try and reason with the vengeful dead.

Halloween, the night when the ghosts reach the height of their power, is fast approaching. With the help of school witchlet Elza Moss, and his cowardly dog Ham, Luke has just thirteen days to uncover the closely guarded secrets of black magic, and send the unquiet spirits to their eternal rest. The alternative doesn't bear thinking about.

An ok read, is how I would sum '13 Days of Midnight'. going by the gritty cover, the synopsis, the much hype and the many positive reviews this book had been getting, I expected maybe a bit too much. The plot wasn't that bad and the premise is very intriguing too but at most it felt like a cheesy been-there-done-that Halloween read.The characters took their time but only after first of the chapters did I start to appreciate them more.

Not much about the humans but the 8 hosts, the ghosts Luke inherits after his father's death, definitely brought out the creep factor of the book. They are all separate entities. They have their own minds and they have their own quirks.And Luke as their next master is definitely a no no. Like Night and Day, subservient, ambitious, sneaky, raging like fire, with sharp canines and so on. So I liked that they brought real tension to the plot.

The writing wasn't anything Phenomenal but rather than too to the point for my taste. Also the use of the first person 'I' throughout the first few chapters was rather annoying too but it changed when the plot began to take shape, so I didn't mind it later. While the author put in a valiant effort, it only scores a 3 stars from me. I liked the story but I didn't stick with me.

"A perfect Halloween read but not the best"

Genre :     Young Adult, Paranormal, Horror

Publisher: Orchard Books 

Release Date: 2nd July, 2015

My Copy: publisher & netgalley

Rate:             3/5 (Liked It)

Buy:         Amazon | Book Depository 

Friday, 11 September 2015

White Rabbit Chronicles #2 Through the Zombie Glass

Presenting White Rabbit Chronicles #2 Through the Zombie Glass by Gena Showalter.

Here is the summary of the book:

Zombies stalk the night. Forget blood and brains. These monsters hunger for human souls. Sadly, they've got mine...
Alice Bell has lost so much. Family. Friends. A home. She thought she had nothing else to give. She was wrong.
After a new zombie attack, strange things begin to happen to her. Mirrors come to life, and the whispers of the dead assault her ears. But the worst? A terrible darkness blooms inside her, urging her to do very wicked things.
She's never needed her team of zombie slayers more, but ultra bad-boy Cole Holland, the leader and her boyfriend, suddenly withdraws from her...from everyone. Now, with her best friend Kat at her side, Ali must kill the zombies, uncover Cole's secret and learn to fight the darkness.
But the clock is ticking...and if she fails at a single task, they're all doomed.

Alice Bell has finally got a glimpse into the reality of her way of life. The embodiment of everything evil exists. Zombies exists and they hunger for the human soul. And Ali knows what it means to fight them alongwith her smoking hot boyfriend Cole Holland and buddies. Can't believe I left this series for so long after reading Alice in Zombieland when it released for so long. Can't compare, this is a fitting bloody brilliant follow-up to the first book.

Life is pretty great for Ali right now. She may have lost her family in a horrible tragedy but she had gained another and a new calling in life as well. A full time Zombie slayer and dating boss-man Cole. So far so good. But trouble enters paradise eventually and things are definitely not good at this juncture. Two new members, have joined the slayer team, Gavin and Veronica to fill up he ranks and it stirs up trouble. On is Cole's ex-flame and the other induces Ali to have the same level of visions that she shared with Cole when they first met.

Another glaringly obvious problem is that the events of first book and the beginning of the second caused Ali to be bitten and bit-by-bit the birth of a second soul in her body. A zombie Ali, who loves biting and controlling the actions of the good Ali to much to spare. Suddenly the mirrors are alive, the dead are whispering and this new darkness urges her to new wicked wicked things. Cole seems to be distancing himself too minute by minute and as expected Anima Industries is on the prowl too.

Showalter is a genius with words. Not only is this a splendid sequel but it managed to bring out so much emotions out of me that it was hardly possible to put it down. Ali was without a doubt the perfect protagonist. She was strong and determined and on the other hand showed a stark vulnerability too. She is not in a great place at the moment with too much going not the way she expected it to be but she doesn't whine about it. Instead chooses to barrel head on and deal with what comes at her first.

Cole ..... you bleeding heart. Where Ali showed and portrayed the duality of sharing two powerful entities in her body and playing that masterfully; Cole took a tumble down the drain to the stupid lane (hah! rhymes perfectly). Behind that stone cold take no prisoners front hides a hideous vulnerability. And it raises its ugly head here. While I admit I wanted to bang something on Cole's head, laying this side of his gives him quite the dimensionality. Really all this teenage angst was seriously messing with my mojo but he finally realizes what a fool he was being and patches things with Ali, so really i'm good there.

By Jove, this was a sequel of sequels. Gena Showalter's Through the Zombie Glass proves the perfect mixture of teen drama, epic romance, epic stupidity (sadly), exhilarating action and a full blown roller-coaster ride of the extravaganza. Making us readers feel every bit of raw emotions seeping from the pages. From love to joy, to grief and despair, the irritating frustration and the eye opening realizations.... The FEELS! And really you just won't care at the end because you get so fixated on the seeing it through with the characters and see the light of a new day together.

"An exhilarating-ly explosive sequel that takes you for a ride and leaves you breathless"

Genre :     Young Adult, Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy, Classic Re-imaging

Publisher: Harlequin Teen

Release Date: 24th September, 2013

My Copy: bought (ebook)

Rate:             5/5 (It was Amazing)

Other Books in the Series(review links):
           #1 Alice in Zombieland 

Buy:           Amazon | Book Depository

Tuesday, 8 September 2015

SWEET TEMPTATION by Wendy Higgins Release Week Blitz (+GIVEAWAY)

I am so excited that SWEET TEMPTATION by Wendy Higgins releases today and that I get to share the news, along with an awesome giveaway!

If you haven’t yet heard about this wonderful series by Wendy Higgins, be sure to check out all the details below.

This blitz also includes a giveaway for a a paperback of the book with a signed bookplate and bookmarks! US only. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.

About The Book:

Author: Wendy Higgins
Pub. Date: September 8, 2015
Publisher: HarperTeen
Pages: 485
Format: Paperback, eBook, audiobook

Bad boy Kaidan Rowe has never wanted for anything—money, popularity, musical talent…hot girls—but seducing them is part of his duty as a Nephilim, slave to the demon Dukes. As the son of the Duke of Lust, Kaidan has learned his father’s ways, becoming a master of passion, a manipulator of chemistry. Disobeying his father would mean certain death. Thankfully for Kaidan, he’s good at his job. And he enjoys it.

Until he meets Anna Whitt—sweet, smart, feisty, and inexplicably good—the one girl seemingly immune to his charms. The daughter of a guardian angel and a fallen one, she has a certain power over him, one that makes him wish for more than he could ever deserve.

Determined to save all the Neph from their dark lives as the influencers of sin, Anna joins forces with Kaidan to overcome the demons’ oppressive ways. In the light of her affections, Kaidan must undergo his toughest test of all, a battle of the heart.

Sensual and swoon worthy, this companion volume to the acclaimed Sweet Evil series from New York Times bestselling author Wendy Higgins, told from the perspective of the irresistibly sexy and mysterious Kaidan Rowe, gives readers revealing insights into his struggle, his intense connection to Anna, and most of all, the true emotions that drive him.

Author Note:
Sweet Temptation will encompass the entire trilogy in a condensed version, beginning with Kai's life before he met Anna, and taking readers through the epilogue of Sweet Reckoning. Sweet Temptation is a companion novel, not meant to be a stand alone story. It will definitely be a richer experience for those who have read the original trilogy.

Go HERE to read an excerpt fro SWEET TEMPTATION!

Also check out Wendy's PINTEREST board for KAI!

About Wendy Higgins:

Wendy Higgins is the USA Today and NYT bestselling author of the Sweet Evil series from HarperTeen and her independently published Irish fantasy, See Me. She is a former high school English teacher who now writes full time, and lives on the Eastern Shore of Virginia with her veterinarian husband, daughter, son, and doggie Rue. 
Wendy earned a bachelor's in Creative Writing from George Mason University and a master's in Curriculum and Instruction from Radford. Writing Young Adult (YA) stories gives her the opportunity to delve into the ambiguities of those pivotal, daunting, and exciting years before adulthood.

Connect with the author:

Giveaway Details:

1 Paperback of SWEET TEMPTATION and a signed bookplate and bookmarks. US Only.

Ends on September 18th at Midnight EST!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, 1 September 2015


I am so excited that QUEEN OF SHADOWS by Sarah J. Maas releases today and that I get to share the news, along with an awesome giveaway!

If you haven’t yet heard about this wonderful series by Sarah J. Maas, be sure to check out all the details below.

This blitz also includes a giveaway for a set of the first 3 books in the series (in paperback format). US only. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.

About The book:

Author: Sarah J. Maas
Pub. Date: September 1, 2015
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Pages: 656

Sarah J. Maas's New York Times bestselling Throne of Glass series reaches new heights in this sweeping fourth volume.

Everyone Celaena Sardothien loves has been taken from her. But she's at last returned to the empire—for vengeance, to rescue her once-glorious kingdom, and to confront the shadows of her past . . .

She will fight for her cousin, a warrior prepared to die just to see her again. She will fight for her friend, a young man trapped in an unspeakable prison. And she will fight for her people, enslaved to a brutal king and awaiting their lost queen's triumphant return.

Celaena’s epic journey has captured the hearts and imaginations of millions across the globe. This fourth volume will hold readers rapt as Celaena’s story builds to a passionate, agonizing crescendo that might just shatter her world.

Read Chapters 1-5 of QUEEN OF SHADOWS HERE!

Sarah J. Maas is the author of the New York Times, USA Today, and internationally bestselling Throne of Glass series–Throne of Glass, Crown of Midnight, and Heir of Fire, and the series’ prequel, The Assassin’s Blade–as well as the New York Times and USA Today bestselling A Court of Thorns and Roses. She wrote the first incarnation of the Throne of Glass series when she was just sixteen, and it has now sold in twenty-three languages. Queen of Shadows, the fourth book in the Throne of Glass series, will release worldwide on September 1st, 2015.
A New York native, Sarah currently lives in Pennsylvania with her husband and dog. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Hamilton College in 2008 with a degree in Creative Writing and a minor in Religious Studies. 

Connect with the Author: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Tumblr | Pinterest | Instagram| Goodreads

Giveaway Details:
1 winner will receive the first 3 books (in paperback) in the THRONE OF GLASS Series. US Only.
Ends on September 11th at Midnight EST!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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