Friday, 30 January 2015

Monthly Books | January

At the end of last year I did a post called Books of 2014, where I rated and organised nearly all the books I had read in the year. So throughout this year I want to give you monthly updates on the books I read and what my rating for them is.

1. These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner- 4/5 stars

2. Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J.K. Rowling- 5/5 stars

3. This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner- 4/5 stars

4. Departure by A.G. Riddle- 3/5 stars

5. Cinder by Marissa Meyer- 4/5 stars

6. Scarlet by Marissa Meyer- 3/5 stars

7. Cress by Marissa Meyer- 5/5 stars

8. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern 4/5 stars

If you haven't read any of these books you should defiantly check them out.
-Rachael xx

Friday, 23 January 2015

Gods of Olympus Book Tag

I know this one was invented quite a while ago but I always love reading people's answers to things like these so I thought I'd share mine. I may bring back some of the other book tags because they're just so much fun! 

Zeus: Name your favourite fictional leader, good or bad?

Robb Stark from A Song of Fire and Ice he was mostly a very wise, natural leader who showed bravery and strength. Despite his age he managed to win the respect and loyalty of people much older and with much more experience.

Hera: Who are your favourite fictional parents?

Mr and Mrs Weasley from Harry Potter is my first answer. They are such amazing, kind and generous parents and I always loved reading the scenes where they were involved. (sorry if this answer is predictable)

Demeter: What fictional food would you like to try?

Pretty much anything from Honeydukes in Harry Potter. Pumpkin Pastilles, Chocolate Frogs, Acid Pops, Sugar Quills, you name it!

Poseidon: Name a book where water is central, either in setting or plot.

The Brotherband series by John Flanagan! They are vikings and therefore spend a lot of time on their ship The Heron.

Dionysus: Which character would you most like to have a party with?

This is kinda hard, but I think I'm gonna have to go with Fred and George Weasley. They're always the ones to throw the parties in the Gryffindor common room and they're proper hilarious.

Apollo: Name a great debut book.

These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner. Although Meagan had published a book before this one, These Broken Stars was the first book by Amie Kaufman.

Artemis: Who is your favourite female heroine?

Annabeth Chase. She is badass, incredible smart and brave. She is so freaking awesome!

Athena: Name a character who is wise.

Although Annabeth is often referred to as 'wise girl' i'm gonna have to pick Dumbledore for this one. I don't think I need to elaborate.

Hermes: If you could travel to any fictional setting (real world or fantasy) where would you go?


Hephaestus: If you could have any fictional tool made (for example a weapon or a gadget), what would you want?

A wand. I know everyone else is saying this but it would just be so useful. (not to mention awesome!)

Ares: What is your favourite fictional battle?

The battle at the end of the Fellowship of the Rings where Boromir dies (cry every time). There are just so many badass and emotional moment during it.

Aphrodite: What is your ultimate ship?

Percabeth. Obviously.

Hades: If you could petition Hades to bring any fictional character back from the dead who would you choose?

Fred Weasley.

If you could be a Goddess of anything what would you want to be and what do you think would fit your personality?

Ahh this is so hard! Umm... I would want to be the goddess of awesomeness. Put I would probably end up begin the goddess of indecision considering I just put awesomeness cause I couldn't think of anything better.

Hope you don't hate my answers! Share your own in the comments.

-Rachael xx

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

This Shattered World

Rating: 6.5/10

A Brief Blurb:
This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner is the second book in the Starbound Trilogy. The story is set on Avon, a planet torn by rebellion and follows Captain Jubilee (Lee) Chase and rebellion leader Flynn Cormac who have more in common than they originally thought. 
If you want a proper blurb check it out on goodreads here-

Alright. Where to begin… 
So This Shattered World, despite being the sequel in the Starbound Trilogy has a different set of protagonists to These Broken Stars. I quite liked this. Sure I was sad that Lilac and Tarver’s story had come to an end but i think thats a good think because we all know that YA romances are a bit like lollies or chocolate. Good at first but then they become too sweet and a little bit sickly and you just want it to end (Twilight anyone?). But thankfully Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner were smart enough to use the world they had created to explore new characters, planets and relationships, while continuing on from the events Tarver and Lilac introduced us to. 

That being said I didn’t enjoy Flynn and Jubilee’s relationship as much as Larver’s (please tell me thats their ship name, cause that would be awesome!). Sure they had some good banter at times but I guess I didn’t believe it as much as the other one. I also felt as though their individual characters weren’t as well developed. Sometimes they were a bit emotionless or too logical in their reactions. This may be because Amie and Meagan spent a year playing around with Tarver and Lilac before writing the book and they weren’t as familiar with them.
However I did really like where their relationship ended up and I really liked them as individuals. 

This Shattered World also had a mysterious element to it with the Fury and Whispers and I really enjoyed unravelling this. I liked how it explored the two sides of the rebellion and how Jubilee and Flynn were able to recognise right and wrong even though they were on opposite sides of this war. 
This book had a much quicker pace, which I enjoyed immensely and some pretty intense action scenes. 

I didn’t really like the dreams at the beginning or each chapter. I kind of skim read them and so they didn’t make much sense until the end. (my bad!) For most of it I was like what is the point of these dreams and although it eventually made sense I think it could’ve been done better. 

I loved the world building in this one. Especially as it was lacking in the previous book. My only problem is that Avon seems to be ridiculously small (unless it was only set on a small area of it) I hope that we get to explore more planets in the next one. 

I really like the fast paced, action packed style of this book. I loved reading about the issues in which Jubilee and Flynn faced and how their relationship developed and their perspective on the rebellion changed as they became more informed and consequently, empathic towards the ‘enemy’. Let me know your thoughts in the comments!

-Rachael xx

These Broken Stars

Rating 7/10 

A Brief Blurb:
These Broken Stars the first novel in Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner's Starbound Trilogy follows Lilac La Roux, the daughter of the richest man in the universe and Major Tarver Merendsen on their journey to rescue as their spaceship the Icarus crash lands on a deserted planet. It soon becomes clear that Lilac and Tarver are the only survivors out of 50,000 passengers and that no help is coming. 

Let me start off by saying this was not what I expected from the blurb (not the one I wrote. Obviously I mean the official one). For one, I for some reason thought that they were going to crash on a colonised planet and part of the plot would be keeping Lilac’s identity secret while they searched for help. What I didn’t expect was for it to be mysterious and creepy at times (tell me the whispers didn’t give you chills at first). In other words These Broken Stars was far better than I expected it would be.

One of my favourite aspects of the book was the beginning of each chapter where it showed a bit of dialogue between Tarver and his interrogator. I loved the way in which it set the tone for the upcoming chapter and filled me with a sense of anticipation and sometimes even dread.

I know this is completely predictable, but I loved Lilac and Tarver’s relationship. But I also loved their characters separately. Their banter was so much fun and I really enjoyed seeing their characters develop and how their perceptions of each other were constantly shifting as circumstances forced them to reveal themselves to each other. 

I did feel as though the world building however was lacking a bit and the world they exist in seemed so interesting. I hope we get to explore it more in the next books. Because of the lack of world building I was left feeling that Tarver and Lilac’s story was just the beginning to something. Almost as though it was a prequel, like the back story for what’s to come.

The ending of the book was quite strange and I don’t think i fully understood everything that happened but I did like it even if it was weird at times.

Overall and it definitely wasn’t what I expected. These Broken Stars extremely original (except for the weird titanic in space bit at the beginning which kept making me think of that Futurama episode where they take off Titanic and Bender is Jack), a surprising read, with a compelling characters and a beautiful love story. I hope you love it as much as i do.

-Rachael xx