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Archive for January, 2013

Beautiful Creatures – Movie Trailer

Now I haven’t read this but I have to say the cast is enough to make me want to see it. I adore Emma Thompson and Jeremy Irons is fantastic.


Meet Lina

I received my copy  as an ARC from the publisher.
9780143307006By: Sally Rippin

Part of the Our Australian Girl series

Lina lives in Melbourne, she goes to a fancy school on a scholarship and dreams of being a writer someday. Her strict Italian parents have a very different idea for her future. Lina spends her time torn between two worlds. To fit in at school she must keep her home life secret. Not even her best friend knows the truth about where she comes from. How long can Lina keep lying to keep all her secrets?

Lina is a great character, passionate and torn. She wants to do right by her parents but has her own dreams that she is desperate to follow. Lina’s story is about finding a place to belong, a place for her to be accepted and honest about who she is. This is merely the first part of Lina’s story and I look forward to seeing how she changes and grows, how she is able to come to terms with the two lives she lives. The wonderful thing about this series is it’s distinctly Australian flavour and it’s great historical backdrop.

Highly recommended.

Publisher: Puffin

Published: 30 January 2013

Format: Paperback 132 pages

Categories: Historical

ISBN 13: 9780143307006

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of the page

Meet Ruby

I received my copy as an ARC from the publisher.
By : Penny Matthews

Part of the Our Australian Girl Series

Ruby Quinlan lives in a big house in Adelaide, she goes to a private girls school, has a house keeper and fox terrier. She has just turned 12 and got a camera for her birthday. Then little things start to happen that she doesn’t understand. There is the boy who sleeps one night in their garage, the man who will do anything just to get a little bit of money and the arguments between her parents. Then one of her friends doesn’t came back to school after the holidays. The world around Ruby is changing and her familiar, comfortable life falls apart.

This is one of the Our Australian Girl series and these are wonderful books. They are easy to read, and their distinctly Australian edge makes them rather unique in the middle grade fiction category. Ruby is an easily relatable character. She is young, enthusiastic and a little unaware of what is going on around her. When things change she is going to have to change with them and it is going to be interesting to see how her character develops throughout these four books. One of the great things about this book is it gives the reader a wonderful insight into living in Australia at the start of the Great Depression.


Publisher: Puffin

Published: 30 January 2013

Format: Paperback 132 pages

Categories: Historical

ISBN 13: 9780143307426

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of the page

City of Bones – Movie Trailer


Here it is the official trailer for the City of Bones, first of the Mortal Instruments series written by Cassandra Clare. It’s been a while since I’ve read the book so I don’t know how close to the source material it will be. It is due for release in August.

The False Prince

This book was sent to me by the publisher.


By: Jennifer A. Nielsen

Sage is an orphan, one who causes trouble and takes risks. He is one of four boys who get kidnapped. Four boys who look remarkably similar. There is something devious, even dangerous, going on, failure will result in death. The boys embark on an intense round of training, the end result of it being that one of them will be chosen to impersonate the kingdom’s missing prince. This is a perilous time for not only the boys but also the kingdom.

This was a riveting read. Sage is an appealing and cheeky character. He is a troublemaker who refuses to give himself over to the will of the man behind this risky charade. The characters are well written, each very different and they fit well together.  The story is engaging, Sage is a character you can grow attached to, he has a particular code and he sticks to it. He has a strength the other’s don’t and a depth that shines through. The story is very much about the characters, particularly Sage, his choices and reasons, however they fit into a world that feels very real. In future stories I am hoping Neilsen will expand on the world.

Well worth a look. (Recommended for ages 10+)

Publisher: Scholastic

Published: 01 Dec 2012

Format: Paperback 352 pages

Categories: Adventure, Fantasy, Conspiracy

ISBN 13: 9781407133058

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of the page


I received my copy from the publisher.9780545298421By: Roland Smith

The 39 Clues series – Cahills vs Vespers bk 4

Amy, Dan, Atticus and Jake are still jet-setting around the world at the beck and call of Vesper one. This time he is sending them after one of the worlds biggest diamonds – the Golden Jubilee. Jonah and Hamilton are pursuing their own leads. All have to be careful of every step and who is following them. Everything these youngsters do, every rule they break is in order to save their family members. Things are getting trickier as they find themselves on Interpol’s Most Wanted List. The family members who are being held hostage have not given up hope, they still plan for escape, maybe this time they will find their chance.

This next instalment of the series keeps up the pace of previous books, the conflict is pretty much what you would expect. It is nice to spend some time following Jonah and Hamilton and the thing that happens to them gives some depth and change to their characters. The problem is that it is starting to feel a bit same old same old, I really want something to change, something to actually go the kid’s way. It isn’t till the end that things begin to grab at your attention, this is when things start to change up a little. The ending though does pull you back in and leaves you with the desire to find out what happens next.

Publisher: Scholastic US 

Published: 06 September 2012

Format: Paperback 336 pages

Categories: Adventure, Crime, Family, Historical

ISBN 13: 9780545298421

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of the page

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer

9780857073631By: Michelle Hodkin

Mara is the only survivor of a strange accident that killed two of her friends and her boyfriend, but she can’t remember any of it. On the advice of doctors Mara and her family start over in a new city in the hope her memories will eventually come back. If only things worked out that way. Mara starts seeing the faces of her dead friends and then she starts seeing other people’s deaths before they happen. This isn’t a way to try and remember or keep a hold on the remaining shreds of her sanity.

Noah Shaw is great looking, and Mara has enough trouble in her life without adding a cute boy to the mix. Noah doesn’t seem to get the hint though because he won’t leave her alone. There is something about Noah that is a little strange though, is there something he wants from Mara, or is it just romance?

A twisty and at times tense read. Mara is an interesting character her confusion and frustration is palpable, seeping through the pages. Noah is intriguing, he has his own issues to match with Mara’s, there is much about him we don’t know by the end of this volume. Mara’s family provide the story with a solid grounding, they keep things in the present and balance all the uncertainty with tangible concerns of a family struggling to help a possibly broken family member.

If you like your romance with gothic overtones and tense twists then this is definitely worth a look.

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children’s Books

Published: 01 March 2012

Format: Paperback 464 pages

Categories: Romance, Gothic, Mystery

ISBN 13: 9780857073631

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of the page


This book was sent to me by the publisher.


By: Elizabeth Miles

The Furies series Bk 2

Emily Winters is trying to adapt. It is not so day to hold onto your regular life after having it ripped apart by Furies. They haven’t left Ascension though and Emily discovers their connection to the town is much stronger than she could have imagined. her new friend Drea is just as determined to get at the Furies, though she won’t tell Emily why. Em is also really trying to make up with JD which is a little difficult when there is so much she can’t tell him.

There is also a new girl in town, Skylar McVoy, who is set on leaving her terrible past behind, including the secret she keeps deep within herself. She can’t believe her luck when popular girl Gabby befriends her. Then sophisticated Meg helps with a makeover and loads of advice, all of which seems to make sense at the time.

This is the second of the Furies books. Em has grown, she is darker in this book, tougher, focussed and fighting not to loose her mind. She struggles to hold a life together that has two very different sides. She tries to maintain two practically opposite types of friendships. Drea is dark, moody, driven and hiding her secrets close. Ultimately Drea’s actions show just how driven she is. Gabby is a wonderfully developed character who provides a lovely counterpoint to the tormented souls around her.

This story is tense, full of frustration and compelling.

Skylar is the new girl, determined to do what most not popular people do when they start a new school – she just wants to fit in. Meg seems to exert a strange hold over her that Skylar simply can’t see, not even when it starts influencing her in making nasty choices. It’s frustrating to read that sort of thing sometimes as the manipulation is so obvious you just want to slap Skylar upside the head. All in all though I will admit to being curious as to where Miles will take this next. Not your normal YA paranormal fantasy.

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children’s Books

Published: 30 August 2012

Format: Paperback 320 pages

Categories: Romance, Paranormal, Mythology

ISBN 13: 9780857072047

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of the page.

Crow’s Revenge

9780141339771By: Marcus Alexander

Keeper of the Realms Bk 1

Charlie Keeper is alone, well almost. Her parents have gone, they are missing. She lives with her grandmother who isn’t very well and her estate is managed by the despicable Mr Crow, who she hates.

Then one day something strange happens, she meets an odd little man with green skin. Then someone or something comes after her and she escapes into a whole different world she never knew she existed. In Bellania Charlie is The Keeper. The problem is Charlie has no idea what the Keeper is or what being one even means. It does become increasingly obvious that someone is trying to kill her. Fortunately Charlie doesn’t have to deal with all this new information on her own. She has a bunch of new friends that will do what they have to because Charlie’s fate is directly tied to the fate of Bellania.

This book has potential. Charlie is a feisty character, stubborn, cheeky. The world she stumbles into is layered, complex, there is politics going on that she doesn’t understand. The problem is that there is so much that needs to be established that the pace suffers and when the book comes in at over 400 pages it makes it hard to read. It’s overall tone is quite dark though Charlie herself brings lightness as do some of the friends she picks up along the way (Jensen and Kelko). Also it has dragons and how they fit into the story, at least at this early stage, is interesting.

If you are or know a reader who likes complex worlds and books that take a little more time to sink into then this may be worth a look. For readers 11+.

Publisher: Puffin Books

Published: 02 February 2012

Format: Paperback 448 pages

Categories: Fantasy

ISBN 13: 9780141339771

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of the page

Vullah Vunnah Nah

This was sent to me by the publisher.

vullah-vunnah-nah-cdBy: Patricia Clarke

This is a traditional lullaby put into print, accompanied by basic illustrations and a CD with the sung lullaby that goes for 2 minutes.

Publisher: One Day Hill

Format: Paperback

Number Of Pages: 12

Genre: Traditional

ISBN: 9780987313904

Purchase: use Booktopia link on the side of the page

Published: 1st October 2012

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