#FridayReads 25/09/2015

Just in case you’re wondering, #FridayReads originated on Twitter and every Friday people tweet what they’ll be reading over the weekend. Bunny Cates brought this over to Youtube and I’m hoping to write a #FridayReads post each week to share with you what I’ll be reading.

This weekend I will be reading:

Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll

Image Source: Goodreads

Image Source: Goodreads

HER PERFECT LIFE
IS A PERFECT LIE.

As a teenager at the prestigious Bradley School, Ani FaNelli endured a shocking, public humiliation that left her desperate to reinvent herself. Now, with a glamorous job, expensive wardrobe, and handsome blue blood fiancé, she’s this close to living the perfect life she’s worked so hard to achieve.

But Ani has a secret.

There’s something else buried in her past that still haunts her, something private and painful that threatens to bubble to the surface and destroy everything.

With a singular voice and twists you won’t see coming, Luckiest Girl Alive explores the unbearable pressure that so many women feel to “have it all” and introduces a heroine whose sharp edges and cutthroat ambition have been protecting a scandalous truth, and a heart that’s bigger than it first appears.

The question remains: will breaking her silence destroy all that she has worked for—or, will it at long last, set Ani free?

So far, so good with this book. I’m looking forward to finding out about the main character’s past.

What will you be reading this weekend?

Happy reading! 🙂

 – Liz

#FridayReads 11/09/2015

Just in case you don’t know, #FridayReads originated on Twitter and every Friday people tweet what they’ll be reading over the weekend. Bunny Cates brought this over to Youtube and I’m hoping to write a #FridayReads post each week to share with you what I’ll be reading.

This weekend I will be reading:

Monster Volume Three by Naoki Urasawa

Image Source: Goodreads

Image Source: Goodreads

The following synopsis contains some spoilers.

Johan is a cold and calculating killer with a mysterious past, and brilliant Dr. Kenzo Tenma is the only one who can stop him! Conspiracy and serial murder open the door to a compelling, intricately woven plot in this masterwork of suspense.

Could Johan have a dual personality, like Jekyll and Hyde? Tenma calls on Dr. Gillen, an authority on criminal psychology, to psychoanalyze Johan. But Dr. Gillen secretly concludes that it is not Johan but Tenma who has committed all the serial murders. Dr. Gillen then tries to lure Tenma into various traps, intending to use him in his own experiments.

Karl, a student at Munich University, visits a blind billionaire every week to read books to him as a way to pay for school. One day he encounters another young man named Johan who once did the same job for the billionaire. From that point on, strange events continue to befall Karl. Who is this young man named Johan? Is he the Johan that we know?

Monster is definitely one of my favourite manga. If you like manga and haven’t yet picked up this series then do it now! You’re missing out!

I will also be reading:

All the Rage by Courtney Summers

Image Source: Goodreads

Image Source: Goodreads

TRIGGER WARNING: RAPE

The sheriff’s son, Kellan Turner, is not the golden boy everyone thinks he is, and Romy Grey knows that for a fact. Because no one wants to believe a girl from the wrong side of town, the truth about him has cost her everything—friends, family, and her community. Branded a liar and bullied relentlessly by a group of kids she used to hang out with, Romy’s only refuge is the diner where she works outside of town. No one knows her name or her past there; she can finally be anonymous. But when a girl with ties to both Romy and Kellan goes missing after a party, and news of him assaulting another girl in a town close by gets out, Romy must decide whether she wants to fight or carry the burden of knowing more girls could get hurt if she doesn’t speak up. Nobody believed her the first time—and they certainly won’t now — but the cost of her silence might be more than she can bear.

With a shocking conclusion and writing that will absolutely knock you out, All the Rage examines the shame and silence inflicted upon young women after an act of sexual violence, forcing us to ask ourselves: In a culture that refuses to protect its young girls, how can they survive?

I’m pretty sure I’ve found a book that will become a favourite of mine. All the Rage is such a powerful book.

What will you be reading this weekend? 🙂

– Liz

Famous Last Words by Katie Alender Review

Image Source: Goodreads

Image Source: Goodreads

“Willa is freaking out. It seems like she’s seeing things. Like a dead body in her swimming pool. Frantic messages on her walls. A reflection that is not her own. It’s almost as if someone — or something — is trying to send her a message.

Meanwhile, a killer is stalking Los Angeles — a killer who reenacts famous movie murder scenes. Could Willa’s strange visions have to do with these unsolved murders? Or is she going crazy? And who can she confide in? There’s Marnie, her new friend who may not be totally trustworthy. And there’s Reed, who’s ridiculously handsome and seems to get Willa. There’s also Wyatt, who’s super smart but unhealthily obsessed with the Hollywood Killer.

All Willa knows is, she has to confront the possible-ghost in her house, or she just might lose her mind . . . or her life.

Acclaimed author Katie Alender puts an unforgettable twist on this spine-chilling tale of murder, mystery, mayhem — and the movies.” (Synopsis taken from Goodreads)

Famous Last Words by Katie Alender

Release Date: 30th September, 2014

Pages: 320

Publisher: Point

Format: Hardback

Source: Gift

A couple of years ago I read Katie Alender’s Bad Girls Don’t Die trilogy which I found to be average and disappointing. I was hesitant about reading Famous Last Words, also by Alender, because of this. I shouldn’t have worried because Famous Last Words was a great read.

There is a noticeable improvement in Alender’s writing in Famous Last Words compared to the Bad Girls Don’t Die trilogy. The writing was well paced, making for a quick read. I was captivated by the writing and the plot. I did not want to put the book down and whenever I was not reading the book I found myself thinking about it. I just needed to know what was going to happen next.  Famous Last Words was, however, slightly predictable. I was able to guess the identity of the killer pretty much straight away but I still had fun reading all the twists and turns as they unfolded. It was also nice to read a YA novel that was not bogged down by romance. I’m someone who has become tired of insta-love, love triangles and romance in YA. Romance does play a small role in this book but it certainly did not put me off. Instead, Alender lets the Hollywood serial killer plot take centre stage, which I appreciated and enjoyed. I’m a big fan of the horror genre, so I am used to a lot of scare tactics used in books and movies. It takes a lot to scare me but Famous Last Words had a definite creepy vibe to it that got to me at the end of the novel and I put that down to Alender’s carefully crafted writing.

I found the characters in the Bad Girls Don’t Die book to be one-dimensional and sometimes immature. But, just like with the writing, the character development has also improved greatly. Willa, the main character, was so much fun to read about. She is relatable, intelligent and likeable. As people who are familiar with the horror genre, and especially slasher films, know, if you do not have a strong protagonist then you often end up rooting for the villain. One of my main problems with the Bad Girls Don’t Die books was the development of Alexis, the main character, and with Famous Last Words being slasher-esque, I thought that I might end up with another main character I couldn’t root for. I was wrong. I was able to support Willa 100% and I always wanted to see her succeed. Willa, along with the other characters in the story, have depth to them and are interesting to read about.

Overall, Famous Last Words was such a pleasure to read and I would definitely recommend this book to others. I would also love to read another book starring Willa simply because she has been one of the best main characters I’ve read about in a while. I am now eagerly awaiting Alender’s next book, The Dead Girls of Hysteria Hall.

“Maybe it’s human nature to be drawn to the things that have hurt us the most.” (Page 197)

4/5 stars

 – Liz

Lost on Mars by Paul Magrs Review

Image Source: Goodreads

Image Source: Goodreads

“With the scale and scope of the great science fiction epics, Lost on Mars tells the story of Lora and her family, settlers on the red planet struggling to survive in incredible circumstances. The family clings to life on a smallholding, surviving storms and sinister rumours of people disappearing – until one night Lora sees the Dancers. When her father and grandmother disappear, Lora and her family are driven out to seek a new life across the plains. But none of them are ready for what they find – the beautiful, dangerous City Inside.” (Synopsis taken from Goodreads)

Lost on Mars by Paul Magrs

Release Date: 14th May, 2015

Pages: 352

Publisher: Firefly Press

Format: Paperback

Source: Purchase

I came across Lost on Mars by Paul Magrs at the YALC event at July’s London Film and Comic Con. I would usually pass on reading a book like this, as Lost on Mars is sci-fi and I am not a fan of the sci-fi genre. I was intrigued by the cover but, most importantly, the blurb captured my attention straight away. Kudos to the author for making me want to read a story that belongs in a genre that I don’t usually enjoy.

I liked Lost on Mars but I didn’t love it. I found that the first half of the book was the strongest and I always wanted to know what was going to happen next. However, the rest of the book did not hold my attention like the first part of the book did. I felt that both halves of the book belonged to two different stories. The endings of some of the chapters felt a bit awkward too. Some of the chapters ended abruptly and it threw me out of the reading zone.

My favourite character has to be Toaster. I would enjoy reading a novella about this particular character. However, I didn’t really care much for the rest of the characters and as I read more and more I found myself caring less and less. The main character, Lora, was not distinguishable from other YA main characters out there, making it difficult for me to want to know more about her and her story.

Even though I did not enjoy this book as much as I thought I would when I first began reading it, I would still recommend it to readers who, like me, are not big fans of sci-fi. Lost in Mars isn’t loaded with sci-fi tropes and elements that make it difficult for me to get into the genre. As you can tell, I have read very little sci-fi and I am not claiming to be an expert on the genre, but for the reason just stated I think that this book would be a great introductory read for anyone looking to give sci-fi a chance.

3/5 stars

 – Liz

#FridayReads 07/08/2015

If you don’t know, #FridayReads originated on Twitter and every Friday people tweet what they’ll be reading over the weekend. Bunny Cates brought this over to Youtube and I’m hoping to write a #FridayReads post each week to share with you what I’ll be reading.

This weekend I will be reading:

Image Source: Goodreads

Image Source: Goodreads

I’m really looking forward to getting stuck into this one and I have high hopes for it. Let’s hope that it doesn’t disappoint!

Happy reading!

– Liz