Monday, 20 April 2015

Review: Winterwood by: JG Faherty



Winterwood (Childhood Fears) - JG Faherty

 Winterwood by JG Faherty

 My Rating:

I received a free copy of Winterwood from the publisher in return for an honest review.

Winterwood: Take a bunch of Grimms fairytale characters, throw them together, add an elf who seems to be channelling yoda, two kidnapped twin boys, and a Grampa who is able to kick ass (in-between taking his angina tablets), and put it all into a Christmas horror story that's released for sale in May...

It's all a bit far fetched. Sure it's full of fairy tale characters and it's fiction, but you can only suspend belief for so long before you start shaking your head at the ridiculousness of it all. Had it been a children's book I could see it working better, but it's a horror book aimed at (I assume by the language) an older audience. I found the whole thing rather silly for a horror book to be honest.

It got that I didn't want to read on, I honestly didn't care about the outcome of it all. I wasn't feeling it. I just kept finding myself thinking that it was getting more ridiculous as the story went on. Also, why release it in May rather than around Christmas time which would make much more sense?

Not one I would recommend.


Reviews also posted to my blog: Scarlet's Web
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Saturday, 18 April 2015

Review: The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge


The Lie Tree - Frances Hardinge


The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge

 My Rating:


I received a free copy of The Lie Tree from the publisher in return for an honest review.

When Faith's father is found dead under mysterious circumstances, she is determined to untangle the truth from the lies. Searching through his belongings for clues she discovers a strange tree. A tree that feeds off whispered lies and bears fruit that reveals hidden secrets. The bigger the lie, and the more people who believe it, the bigger the truth that is uncovered.

The premise of The Lie tree really caught my attention and I was hoping to have the book really capture my imagination. Unfortunately that wasn't the case. I've had this book on my currently reading pile for over a week and it's been a chore to pick it up and finish it.

The Lie Tree is a middle grade children's fantasy book and to be honest, I really struggle to imagine it holding a child's attention. I found the book to be very slow and I hate to use the boring word, but I was bored. I didn't like the characters, none of them appealed to me. My attention kept wandering and I just wasn't interested in what was going on. I found myself having to resist skipping pages. There just wasn't enough going on to inspire me or capture my imagination. The story felt dull and grey instead of imaginative and colourful, there was nothing there that I could picture a child immersing their imagination into.

Not one I would recommend.


Reviews also posted to my blog: Scarlet's Web
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Review: Movers by: Evan J. Clark.



Movers - Evan J. Clark, Ashleigh Richmond

 Movers by: Evan J. Clark.

 My Rating:

I received a free copy of Movers from the author in return for an honest review.

The premise of Movers really intrigued me, it had me curious and wanting to read and learn more about what a mover was/did.

The story pulled me in almost right away. The style in which it was written very much appealed to me and the voice of the character telling the story was a large part of what made the book enjoyable. I enjoyed the voice, I felt like I was sat there in the company of the character as he told me his story.

The book feels at first like it's a slow burner but it's actually not. It's consistently building a slow and creepy sci-fi horror story with a very unique and interesting plot that I enjoyed that very much.

The only thing I would say, which isn't a negative in anyway way, is that I wanted to know more about the movers themselves. The author gives you enough for you to understand but at the same time he creates the kind of creepiness similar to the unknown horror lurking in your closet. You know it's there and you know it scares you, but you're not quite sure why or what it is and what it's going to do. It was very effective and worked very well, but I'm left curious to know more.


Reviews also posted to my blog: Scarlet's Web
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Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Review: Close to Home by Lisa Jackson



Close to Home - Lisa Jackson

 Close to Home by Lisa Jackson

 My Rating:

I received a free copy of Close to Home from the publisher in return for an honest review.

This one was just not for me, I had to force myself to read on after only reaching page 65 because I was getting bored and annoyed by the inconsistencies. It felt at times like the author had forgotten what she had had her characters say/do in the previous chapters to then have them say/do something that totally contradicted it in the next. There was also so many different plot lines going on that it seems the author totally forgot about one of them herself.

The characters were dull, the interactions between them were unbelievable, and I didn't care to read about any of them. I had other problems with them but I don't want to go into detail and give away parts of the plot.

The book started off very well, the prologue was intense and I was really looking forwards to reading more but it went downhill fast. It's over 400 pages long so it's not a quick read by any standards. It's full of twists and turns (and clich├ęs!) and different plot lines that are impossible to keep track of (even the author seems to have lost track of one them, bet that poor guy is smelling ripe now) and yet despite the book being so long, the author winds the whole thing up in just a few pages, rushing the ending and making it feel thrown in just to get it over with.

This is the first I have read by this author and I hate to write an author off after just one book but I can't see me picking up another one unless recommended by a friend who's opinion I value when it comes to books.
 

Reviews also posted to my blog: Scarlet's Web
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Friday, 10 April 2015

Review: Such a Secret Place by Cortney Pearson



Such A Secret Place - Cortney Pearson

 Such a Secret Place by Cortney Pearson

 My Rating:


I received a free copy of Such A Secret Place from the publisher in return for an honest review.

I found Such A Secret Place to be a very easy and pleasant read. There was no effort required in reading it at all, the story just flowed and held my attention easily and the pages almost turned themselves. Every time I put it down I was thinking about when I could pick it up again.

Such A Secret Place is a young adult book and there was a little bit of angst going on, but because of the plot the it did need it, though I did find it slightly annoying at times. There was also a love triangle that developed, I'm not a fan of those but I was so hooked on the story that it honestly didn't bother me at all.

The plot was original and unique and the world building was very well done. I felt like I knew everything about the world, almost as if I had been there myself and gotten to know the environment like it was my own. The characters were well fleshed out and the interaction between them felt real. The main character had a little sass which I always like in female characters and I enjoyed how her character grew as the plot progressed.

The story had a lot of the elements that that I enjoy in a fantasy and I would be here all day if I was to touch on them all, but I have to say, I really liked how magic worked and the way that everything was run by magic instead of electricity etc.

This is the second book I have read by Cortney Pearson and I enjoyed it as much as I did the first. I will definitely be reading more from this author in future, I enjoy the uniqueness of her stories.


Reviews also posted to my blog: Scarlet's Web
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Thursday, 9 April 2015

Review: Truckers: The First Book of the Nomes by Terry Pratchett



Truckers: The First Book of the Nomes - Terry Pratchett

 Truckers: The First Book of the Nomes by Terry Pratchett

 My rating:
 

I received a free copy of Truckers: The First Book of the Nomes from the publisher in return for an honest review.

Truckers was such a fun read. It's full of humour and adventure and sets the imagination on fire. I know it's a children's book but I completely forgot that fact while reading as it's so well written and fun for all ages.

The way the author has approached everyday objects, giving them a whole new outlook or meaning when seen from the Nomes point of view, was refreshing to read. I think what appealed to me the most was the style of the humour. It's subtle and innocent and it sneaks up on you. The characters themselves are being funny without being aware of it, if that makes sense, and that makes it all the more humorous.

"How many books are there?" said Masklin.
"Hundreds! Thousands!"
"Do you know what they're all about?"
Gurder looked at him blankly. "Do you know what you're saying?" he said.
"No. But I want to find out."
"They're about everything! You'd never believe it! They're full of words even I don't understand!"
"Can you find a book which tells you how to understand words you don't understand?" said Masklin.
Gurder hesitated. "It's an intriguing thought," he said.

My favourite part has to be the books, so many books and so much wisdom to be found inside. The way they read them and assume everything they read to be true really tickled my sense of humour. We pick up books and we know what's fiction and what's true, but how different would the world seem if we didn't know and we were to experience it through all kinds of books assuming everything we read was fact.


Reviews also posted to my blog: Scarlet's Web
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Sunday, 5 April 2015

Review: Our Endless Numbered Days by Claire Fuller

Our Endless Numbered Days - Claire Fuller 
Our Endless Numbered Days by Claire Fuller

My rating:
  
I received a free copy of Our Endless Numbered Days from the publisher in return for an honest review.
 
I wasn't sure what to expect from this one, the premise caught my attention and it turned out to be a pretty intense and vivid read.

The story is told completely from the main character Peggy's point of view and is split into two different intertwining storylines: the summer of 1976 when her father takes her away from all she knows, and 1985 when she's older and has returned home. Peggy's character was written extremely well, it was full of depth with an innocence that draws you in, you can't help but feel for her and become attached to her character.

I was impressed by the writing style. The way the author dropped subtle hints that sparked the imagination without actually detailing what was occurring, was cleverly done. A lot was left to the readers imagination when it came to the pain and suffering of the characters in the book, filling in those blanks allows the reader to paint as grim a situation as their imagination allows. At the time of reading the story I wasn't really aware of this, it wasn't until I had finished that I realised how cleverly the author had manipulated my imagination and my experience of the story.

The way the author builds the world and scenery in the story was also done very well. The descriptions and scenes were very easy to visualise. The author immerses the reader in a way that makes you feel like you are there with the characters, surrounded by all the trees and part of the story.

Our Endless Numbered Days is not a feel good read, it's raw, it's intense but at the same time there are moments of innocence, hope and happiness and you'll find yourself thinking about the story long after you have finished the book.


Reviews also posted to my blog: Scarlet's Web
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