Review: Marly’s Ghost by David Levithan

23898966Marly’s Ghost by David Levithan
Genre: Contemporary, Retelling, Romance
Published by: Electric Monkey
Pages: 166
Format: Paperback
Rating: ★★
Other: Two Boys KissingEvery Day

Marly’s Ghost is what David Levithan calls a ‘remix’ of Charles’ Dickens ‘A Christmas Carol’, except at Valentine’s Day instead of Christmas. The basic premise is that Ben’s girlfriend Marly died and now he can’t connect to the celebrations and feels he’ll never love again. So Marly’s ghost visits him in the middle of the night, and tells him he’ll be visited by three ghosts. Can you guess who? That’s right! The ghosts of Valentine’s Past, Present and Future.

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Review: Iron Cast by Destiny Soria

cover91844-mediumIron Cast by Destiny Soria
Genre: 
Paranormal
Published by: Amulet Books
Pages: 384
Format: ARC e-book
Rating: ★★.5

Set in 1919, Iron Cast is about best friends, Corinne and Ada, who have magical powers linked to the arts. When Corinne recites poetry, she can conjure illusions. When Ada plays the violin, she can bend your will and change your memories. Their friends, Saint, can pull objects out of what he paints. They are all hemopaths. Together, the girls work in Cast Iron, a club that’s kind of like a speakeasy, but hemopathy is sought, rather than alcohol. Because of their powers, they’re hunted, and the group hunting them down is closing in. The explanation is all great, and the world sounds like an interesting place, but while reading, I struggled to be interested by what was going on, no matter how glorious the girls’ powers were.  Continue reading

Review: The Amateurs by Sara Shepard

31328386The Amateurs by Sara Shepard
Genre: 
Mystery, Crime Solving
Published by: Hot Key Books
Pages: 336
Format: ARC e-book
Rating: ★★.5

I was really excited by the first couple of chapters of The Amateurs, because the concept was just so cool for a girl that wishes she was Nancy Drew. The main characters, Seneca and Maddy are both part of this online forum, Case Not Closed, that gives people access to information about unsolved, cold cases the police have given up on. Using contacts, members of the website are able to solve the unsolvable and play the detective.  Another of the characters, Aerin, whose sister Helena goes missing in the flashback that opens the book, posts a plea for help on Helena’s case. Seneca and Maddy, previously only friends online, meet IRL to answer the plea. It sounds super great, right? Well, after I kept reading, I grew slowly more incredulous and…dissatisfied? Here’s why: Continue reading

Review: The Witch’s Kiss by Katharine and Elizabeth Corr

cover83338-mediumThe Witch’s Kiss by Katharine and Elizabeth Corr
Genre: 
Fairy Tale, Contemporary
Published: HarperCollins
Pages: 424
Format: ARC e-book
Rating: ★★★★
Note: We received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. 

Sister writing duo, fairy tales, witches, oh my! There was a lot to look forward to in The Witch’s Kiss and I loved every single second! If this book wasn’t made for me, I’d be surprised! Going into it, I didn’t realise it was going to be part of a series, so I was reading it thinking everything was going to resolve by the end, and it almost does, except for a little thread that just itches at you, making you desperate for the second book. We’re only waiting until February 2017, though, which isn’t too long….right?  Continue reading

Review: Cell 7 by Kerry Drewery

29864658Cell 7 by Kerry Drewery
Genre:
Dystopian
Published by:
Hot Key Books
Pages:
400
Format:
ARC e-book
Rating: ★★★

I absolutely adore the tagline, ‘Behind bars. For your entertainment.’ It’s such an exciting premise! (Here’s a plot summary: Martha has killed a high profile celebrity, and she will be tried in the Cells, where the public will vote over seven days whether or not they think she’s ‘guilty’ or ‘innocent.’ But there’s something she isn’t mentioning and the people that love her and getting increasingly more concerned as it looks like the vote isn’t going to save Martha. It’s going to kill her.) This book has received quite a lot of hype already and it comes highly recommended by a few blogger friends. So, let’s get onto what I made of it!

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Review: The Movie Version by Emma Wunsch

cover92310-medium

The Movie Version by Emma Wunsch
Genre: 
Contemporary
Published by: Amulet Books
Pages: 368
Format: ARC e-book
Rating: ★

The idea of a character that constantly compares real life to the movies, and how it would be better if it was a movie, sounds like my kind of thing. I feel like I’m constantly quoting films or bringing them up in conversation, whether it alienates other people or not. So, The Movie Version was setting itself up to be good, but I didn’t realise it would be so great. With a great sibling relationship, a mental health issue and the trials and tribulations of first love, this book ticked way more boxes than I thought it would.  Continue reading

Review: How To Keep A Boy From Kissing You by Tara Eglington

28220759How To Keep A Boy From Kissing You by Tara Eglington
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published by: St. Martin’s Griffin
Pages: 320
Format: ARC e-book
Rating: ★★

From the title I thought this was going to be a little silly, but it sounded like the Australian version of Kisses For Lula by Samantha Mackintosh – one of my favourite duologies! And I’ve come to the conclusion that I would’ve probably liked this a lot more when I was 14 and was oblivious to things like the Bechdel Test.

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Series Review: Stella Etc by Karen McCombie

Frankie, Peaches and Me, Sweet-Talking TJ, Meet the Real World, Rachel, Truly, Madly Megan, Amber and the Hot Pepper Jelly, Twists, Turns and 100% Tilda, and Forever and Ever and Evie
Genre: 
Contemporary, Adventure, Humour | Published by: Scholastic
Rating: ★★★★★

Stella Etc. was another one of our all-time favourites. Back when the summers were only six weeks long, we’d read one book a week (always skipping the final book because it was when Stella went back to London so you did’t see all her Portbay friends). This time Maddie and I managed to read all seven books in one day! Stella Etc. is full of summer adventures, friends and sea-side fun!

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Review: Stealing Snow by Danielle Paige

30309128Stealing Snow by Danielle Paige
Genre: Fairy Tale Retelling
Published by: Bloomsbury Children’s
Pages: 384
Format: ARC e-book
Rating: ★★

From the very beginning, I was confused about what Stealing Snow was trying to retell. Her name, Snow, made me think of Snow White. But, the whole mirror thing and wintry landscape had me thinking Snow Queen. Either way, I was disappointed. Let’s talk about why… Continue reading

Review: Doll Bones by Holly Black

15944406Doll Bones by Holly Black
Genre: Magical-Realism, Middle-Grade
Published by: Corgi Children’s
Pages: 256
Format: Paperback
Rating: ★★

Okay, so I’ve sampled Holly Black’s YA books and her MG that’s co-written, so this is actually the first middle grade book of hers where there isn’t a secondary contributor. I feel like her writing is a bit hit-and-miss in general, and I’m sad to say that Doll Bones was a bit of a miss for me. It was an engaging story but completely over the top and I think I would’ve needed more elements of realism to properly enjoy it.

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