Sunday, April 25, 2010

Rating : 4.0/5
Number of Pages : 324
Series : #6 Sookie Stackhouse
Format : Urban Fantasy Novel
Reason for Reading : Sookie Stackhouse Reading Challenge, to continue with the series

Sookie's cousin Hadley is dead. She was one of her few living relatives although technically when she died she was a vampire. She was also the consort of the vampire Queen of New Orleans. Sookie has already discovered who killed Hadley (short story from the collection Bite "One Word Answer") and they have been dealt with. Sookie is called to New Orleans to sort through Hadley's possessions and apartment as well as to attend to the Queen.

The Queen has recently married Peter Threadgill, a particularly ambitious vampire who has made his way up to being King. The marriage is for convenience and they couple are about to have their first official visit since their wedding. Hadley was killed the night before and turns out she had taken a valuable bracelet from the Queen. Without it the King will challenge her as having lost his most precious wedding gift and he could take over her territory. It is up to Sookie to find the bracelet before their official dinner and dance in a few days.

Complications arise, as always, in the form of Sookie's love life and their witch who owns the apartment Hadley was staying in. Sookie finds out an unpleasant truth about her former love vampire Bill Compton and begins dating shafeshifter Quinn. She befriends witch Amelia who looks like she is sticking around for a while. There is also the nasty matter of Debbie Pelt's family who are still investigating what happened to Debbie.

Rating : 4.0/5
Number of Pages : 505
Format : Fiction Novel
Reason for Reading : Challenge with Nymeth 2

Kafka is the assumed name of a 15 year old boy from Tokyo who runs away from home. His mother left him with his father when he was a young boy taking his adopted sister with her. His dad left him with the Oedipus prophecy that he would sleep with his mother and also his sister. He has no real memory of what his mother or sister look like so has no idea how to avoid this.

Enter Nakata. He is also from Tokyo and now an old man. When he was a child he was involved in a strange incident during the war which caused him to slip into a coma like sleep. When he woke up he had lost the ability to read and write and lost a lot of his wits. He had been a bright young student so no one really knew what to do with him. He is happy though making his own way through life plus he can now talk to cats.

Both indivually set out on an adventure that will bring their purposes together, Kafka to escape his father and try to discover himself and Nakata to follow what he instinctively knows but cannot explain. Along the way both meet an interesting mix of characters from cats to fictional characters to people of confusing gender and a ghost.

It has taken me a little while to put my thoughts together on this one. I loved the story telling, you are really drawn in and absorbed into the storytelling. The characters (in particular Nakata and Hoshino) were engaging and somehow despite the supernatural elements it was highly believable. My only issue was with the ending. There were so many puzzles and questions raised throughout the book that weren't really answered. I love a good mystery don't get me wrong, but a little resolution would have been good.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

As anyone who reads this blog must know by now that I have no willpower when it comes to reading challenges! I am signing up for one more, the Cozy Mystery Challenge. I did this last year and it was my first dip into the genre. I had a lot of fun and am looking forward to catching up with some of the series I started last time around.

The challenge runs from 1st April until 30th September and I signed up for the challenge basics of reading 6 cozy mysteries in this time. There is a dedicated challenge blog that includes sign up sheet and a place to put your reviews here. I'm looking forward to getting started...

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Rating : 3.5/5
Number of Pages : 208
Series : #6Death Note
Format : Manga
Reason for Reading : Manga Challenge 2010, to continue with the series

So Light and L know that the newest Kira is part of the Yotsuba company, but they still don't know which of the 7 left in the group it is. They get Misa Amane to help out and go undercover at the company by being honest about being suspected of being Kira and possibly knowing who L is.

Rem was Misa's Shinigami when she had a Death Note and was the second Kira and she is worried that Misa is putting herself in danger with this new plan. She shows herself to Misa and tells her the real backstory about herself and Light (who has still forgotten). All Misa wants is to be with Light and as she loves Kira being with the two at once makes her very happy naturally. What will this mean for L and the rest of the task force moving forwards.

After a disappointing volume 5 this sees the action and the story back on form. The twists and turns are making more sense and I engaged in the plot again yay! Looking forward to seeing what happens now that they have surrounded the new Kira.

Buffy 8 v3 - 6

Rating : 3.5/5
Number of Pages : 136, 136, 144, 144
Series : #3 - 6 Buffy Series 8
Format : Graphic Novel
Reason for Reading : Graphic Novel Challenge 2010, to continue with the series

Buffy and the gang are back where the television series left off to continue their adventures against the new big-bad Twilight.

Wolves at the Gate

A new breed of vampires have appeared and have stolen the sythe that Buffy used to turn all the potentials into Slayers. These vampires can turn into mist and animals so the gang go off to enlist the help of Dracula, the only other vampire with these powers. We delve into Xander's relationship with Dracula, his Master, and the possibility of him loving again. The new vampires have a plan to turn the Slayers back into regular girls unless the gang can stop them.

Time of Your Life

Buffy is sent into the future where she meets Fray (she has her own spin off comic). Fray is a future Slayer and was called after the Slayer line was dormant for many decades. There is only one Slayer in the future, so what happened to all the other Slayers Buffy awakened? There is an enemy in the future that Buffy must defeat once and for all, but can she make herself do it...

Predator's and Prey

Harmony is back and is gaining support for vampires. She has her own reality television show and is turning the human population against Slayers. She claims they are abusing their power and all they want to do is kill. Doesn't help that some Slayers have gone rogue and Buffy had been raising money to support her operation through less than above board means. Now humanity is against the Slayers as well as Twilight and the other demons/vampires.


Twilight finally finds Buffy and her Slayer army, they track them using the magic they are using to shield and protect their fortress in Scotland. Buffy takes the gang to the only person she knows who has been able to give up the magics. Oz is able to surpress his werewolf nature and has made a family for himself in Tibet. Can he train the Slayers and Willow to release their magics and defeat Twilight's army with brute strength.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Rating : 3.0/5
Number of Pages : 183
Format : Teenage Fiction Novel
Reason for Reading : 10 10 10 Challenge

Nick has recently been dumped by his girlfriend Triss, the love of his life. What he didn't know was she had been cheating on him with many different guys. Norah on the other hand broke up with her boyfriend when he went to work on a kibbutz. He always called her frigid and made her feel like crap. They meet one night in a club after Nick's band has finished playing and when Triss shows up they pretend to be together to get her to leave them alone. They have instant chemsitry and begin an adventure around Manhattan.

Norha's ex boyfriend shows up, Nick's band mates get in the way and can either of them either really get past Triss. They both have their own baggage, but a journey though music and the city eventually opens their eyes. tMy problem with this was that it went on too long. The story finished about 50 pages before the end of the book, but it kept dragging on and on and on some more. The language was pretty bad and it was quite explicit in places so it may offend some people and not recommended for younger teens, but it sounded quite authentic to me personally.

Rating : 4.0/5
Number of Pages : 295
Series : #5 Sookie Stackhouse
Format : Urban Fantasy Novel
Reason for Reading : Sookie Stackhouse Challenge, to continue with the series

Another supernatural adventure for telepathic waitress Sookie Stackhouse. This time the supernatural is closer to home as we wait to find out what happened to Jason after the fourth book. Will he stay human or become a supernatural being. Jason embraces the outcome with an enthusiasm Sookie was not expecting. When supernatural beings start being shot at though, the community suspects Jason and his life is in danger yet again. See it is only were's and shifters that are being targeted and in light of the events of Dead to the World it makes sense.

Sookie begins to investigate when Jason becomes a suspect and Sam is shot. She goes to the vampires for help, Eric in particular who sends a barman over to Merlott's to help while Sam is recovering. She also gets involved in were politics when their pack leader dies in a car accident and a new successor needs to be chosen. It comes down to a ruthless killer and Alcide's father, an ex gambler.

Another great addition to the series. There are so many supernatural characters and species in the mix now, it's a little hard to keep track of what everyone is! I like that there are still some humans in the mix and I hope it stays that way. It's interesting that Sookie straddles both worlds and we are still unsure exactly what she is.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

The end of the April 2010 readthon is here. I had a blast as always :)

Current Book : Kafka on the Shore - Haruki Murakami
Books Read So Far : 8
Pages Read Since Last Update : 155
Total Pages Read : 1,482
Time Spent Reading : 100 mins
Total Time Spent Reading : 975 mins
Time Spent in Cat Related Activities : 70 mins

Closing meme :

1. Which hour was most difficult for you?
- Around hour 12 as I had such bad pains I had to go to bed for a bit

2. Could you list a few high interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year?
- I really enjoyed Ella Enchanted and all the Buffy graphic novels I read

3. Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year?
- No it's as good as all the other ones so far :)

4. What do you think worked really well in this years Read-a-thon?
- I'm not sure as I didn't participate in any mini challenges this year deciding to focus on reading instead. They have always been great in the past though and a lot of fun.

5. How many books did you read?
- This time I read 8 in total and part of a 9th.

6. What were the names of the books you read?
Ella Enchanted - Gail Carson Levine
Dead as a Doornail - Charlaine Harris
Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist - Rachel Cohn & David Levithan
Buffy 8 v3
Buffy 8 v4
Buffy 8 v5
Buffy 8 v6
Death Note v6
Parts of Kafka on the Shore - Haruki Murakami

7. Which book did you enjoy most?
- I enjoyed all of them, but Dead as a Doornail stands out the most. I just love the Sookie Stackhouse/True Blood series :)

8. Which did you enjoy the least?
- None, they were all fab!

9. If you were a Cheerleader, do you have any advice for next year's Cheerleaders?
- N/A

10. How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time?
- Of course! Sign me up for being a Reader again :)

Nearly there, into the home stretch now...

Current Book : Death Note v6 - Tsugumi Ohba
Books Read So Far : 7
Pages Read Since Last Update : 281
Total Pages Read : 1,327
Time Spent Reading : 100 mins
Total Time Spent Reading : 875 mins
Time Spent in Cat Related Activities : 60 mins

I finished 2 more Buffy graphic novels and am completely up to date with series 8 now that was continued in comics after the tv show finished. Now onto some manga to finish up the day.

I had to get some sleep in the middle but am up again and reading despite still being in a rubish amount of pain. WIll have to call the doctor tomorrow morning :(

Current Book : Buffy 7 v5 - Joss Whedon
Books Read So Far : 5
Pages Read Since Last Update : 336
Total Pages Read : 1,046
Time Spent Reading : 130 mins
Total Time Spent Reading : 775 mins
Time Spent in Cat Related Activities : 50 mins

Since my last update I have read 2 Buffy graphic novels and am on my third.

The halfway point and I am so tired now (it's 1am here).

Current Book : Undecided what to read next...
Books Read So Far : 3
Pages Read Since Last Update : 106
Total Pages Read : 710
Time Spent Reading : 95 mins
Total Time Spent Reading : 645 mins
Time Spent in Cat Related Activities : 40 mins

I just finished my first book and spent some quality time with Eris who needed stroking apparently ^_^ Not really sure what to read next. Contemplating sleep for a bit as my tummy is still sore.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Another two hours have flown by... Where is the time going?!

Current Book : Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist - Rachel Cohn & David Levithen
Books Read So Far : 2
Pages Read Since Last Update : 98
Total Pages Read : 604
Time Spent Reading : 95 mins
Total Time Spent Reading : 550 mins
Time Spent in Cat Related Activities : 20 mins

I finished my second book and had some dinner. My tummy is really sore so my lovely husband has prepared me a hot water bottle or "hottle" as we call it for short to help with the pains. If it carries on I may have to go to bed for a bit :(

Yet another 2 hours have flown by.

Current Book : Dead as a Doornail - Charlaine Harris
Books Read So Far : 1
Pages Read Since Last Update : 117
Total Pages Read : 506
Time Spent Reading : 115 mins
Total Time Spent Reading : 455 mins
Time Spent in Cat Related Activities : 10 mins

I'm very close to finishing my second book now. In the next two hours though I plan to stop for a break and have dinner (it's just after 9pm here in the UK).

Another 2 hours of reading are over.

Current Book : Dead as a Doornail - Charlaine Harris
Books Read So Far : 1
Pages Read Since Last Update : 115
Total Pages Read : 389
Time Spent Reading : 115 mins
Total Time Spent Reading : 340 mins
Time Spent in Cat Related Activities : 10 mins

I still haven't done any mini challenges just concentrating on reading at the moment. Will see how I feel over the next 2 hours.

At the end of hour 4 now and still awake and having great fun :)

Current Book : Dead as a Doornail - Charlaine Harris
Books Read So Far : 1
Pages Read Since Last Update : 113
Total Pages Read : 274
Time Spent Reading : 105 mins
Total Time Spent Reading : 225 mins
Time Spent in Cat Related Activities : 5 mins

I finished my first book which I was reading at the same time as Jehera and have just started my second for the readathon. Review to follow when I need a break later from reading!

So I have successfully reached the end of the second hour.

Current Book : Ella Enchanted - Gail Carson Levine
Books Read So Far : 0
Pages Read Since Last Update : 161
Total Pages Read : 161
Time Spent Reading : 120 mins
Time Spent in Cat Related Activities : 0 mins

Opening Meme

Where are you reading from today?
- The sofa in our front room

3 facts about me...
- Despite being married I am a crazy cat lady (Eris is purring on my knee as I type this bless)
- I recently got home from a holiday to New Zealand, Australia and Hong Kong which was amazing
- I have already consumed 5 jam doughnuts since the readathon started eep

Do you have any goals for the read-a-thon (ie number of books, number of pages, number of hours, or number of comments on blogs)?
- Not really. I would like to read 3 novels, 1 graphic novel and 1 manga ideally but am pretty flexible

If you're a veteren read-a-thoner, any advice for people doing this for the first time?
- In the sleepy hours after 15 try reading graphic novels or manga when it's harded to concentrate on anything heavier. The pictures really help.

Friday, April 09, 2010


This years read-a-thon starts tomorrow in honour of Dewey. Full details are at the dedicated site here. The Read-a-thon starts tomorrow April 10th at 5am Pacific (1pm GMT). The timings page is a little confusing as it says the UK starts at 1pm but as we are British Summer Time we are GMT+1. I will go by the timings page though and being at1pm unless someone else tells me different!

I have a couple of books in my pile to read :

Ella Enchanted - Gail Carson Levine (which I am reading first at the same time as Jehera)
Dead as a Doornail - Charlaine Harris
Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist - Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

I also have a selection of graphic novels and manga for when my attention is not so great.

I haven't yet had a chance to amass any snacks, but will try anc stock up in the morning before I get settled into reading. If you haven't signed up yet make sure you do today!

Rating : 3.5/5
Number of Pages : 120
Series : #2 Buffy Series 8
Format : Graphic Novel
Reason for Reading : Graphic Novel Challenge 2010, to continue with the series

Buffy and the gang are back in the continuation of Series 8. Faith is employed by Giles to go after a rogue Slayer, one who is abusing her powers and hell bent on killing Buffy and taking charge of all the new Slayers. She has the help of a magician working for Twilight. To do this Faith must infiltrate her life and as she is part of the British aristocracy Faith must learn how to conduct herself in high society. A new ball gown is in order as well as etiquette lessons from Giles. Looks like he has his work cut out for him...

Buffy and Willow go on their own quest against Twilight. They seek advice from a demon who shows them some of the lies they have been telling each other and themselves. Seems the Slayers have been getting money from an "annoymous" benefactor and Willow is shocked to learn the truth. The relationship between Willow and Kennedy is also explored further.

A fun addition to the series, I really like Faith and always thought she got a rough deal with everyone loving Buffy best. I will be interested to see how her storyline intertwines with Buffy's who has major reasons for not trusting her (and vice versa, there was the stabbing incident after all).

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Rating : 4.5/5
Number of Pages : 116
Format : Teenage Fiction, Fairy Tale
Reason for Reading : 10 10 10 Challenge, I love Alice Hoffman

Another beautiful tale from Alice Hoffman who is known for mixing reality and fairy tale. Green has always been a quiet child, nothing like her beautiful sister who shines like the moon. Her mother taught her all she knew about growing and planting to the point where she now has more knowledge than her. On market day she is disapppointed to be left behind looking after the house and garden while everyone else goes off to trade. She doesn't realise how lucky she is when a fire destroys the city and everyone in it, including Green's family.

The ashes nearly blind her and instead of healing herself she lets them. What use has she for seeing now her family are gone. All she has for company is her sisters dog and she decides to be Green no longer. She begins to ink her skin with thorns, bats and ravens as she tries to leave the past behing. She puts nails in her boots and becomes tough to protect herself from the scavengers around her. She retains some kindness though and befriends a dog, some birds and her elderly neighbour as she struggles to cope with her new life. One day a stranger turns up who helps her discover another side of herself.

Such a beautiful story, a true modern fairy tale. A must for anyone who loves to get caught up in a magical story.

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Rating : 3.5/5
Number of Pages : 208
Series : #5 Death Note
Format : Manga
Reason for Reading : Manga Challenge 2010, to continue with the series

L and Light are back and still trying to solve the identity of Kira who is murdering criminals in his own vigilante justice. Light has given up his Death Note and his memory of being Kira and is now working full time with L in his bid to solve the mystery.

There is a new Kira in town. This time it is a organisation that is using Kira to kill people who increase their money. There is a small group working together in the company and no one knows which one of them has the link to Kira. It's a precautionary measure and it makes things more difficult for L and his team. They are now all working without the support of the police and one member takes it upon himself to do his own undercover snooping which puts the whole operation in jepody as well as his life.

The mystery keeps getting more and more complicated and there is still no resolution in sight. This felt more like a filler and the beginning of a new thread rather than really moving the main plot forwards. Hopefully Light will rediscover his Death Note and the Shinigami will become more involved in the story again.

Rating : 3.5/5
Number of Pages : 253
Format : Teenage Fiction, Horror
Reason for Reading : 10 10 10 Challenge

Margot has always wanted to be popular and have a boyfriend, but she is a nobody along with her best friend Sybil. One evening everyone in the school is turned into zombies apart from them and Margot finds a way to use the situation to her advantage. There are precautions you have to take having a zombie boyfriend, but Margot finally has her popular crush following her around. She convinces herself zombies are capable of love and loyalty and he is not just after the scraps of meat she carries around to reward his good behaviour.

The problem is that to get her way she finds herself moving further away from Sybil. She discovers a dark place inside her that wants bad things to happen to her "best friend" who she sees as lame and trying to steal her spotlight. They are working at cross purposes as Sybil is trying to save the students while Margot is enjoying herself far too much being Queen of the school.

This was a fun take on the zombie genre. I enjoyed getting to know Margot and despite being a very fictional tale, I found her a very realistic character. She was a typical teenager, thinking of herself and putting herself in front of her supposed friends. I would recommend it and read more by Van Lowe in the future as it was a fun and quick read.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Rating : 3.0/5
Number of Pages : 224
Series : #Twilight Graphic Novel Series
Format : Teenage Fiction, Vampire, Graphic Novel
Reason for Reading : Once Upon a Time IV Challenge

Another Twilight re-telling this time in graphic novel format. It sticks pretty closely to the prose of the twilight novel and goes up to about the half way point. It's the artwork that sets it apart though by Young Kim. I love her interpretation of the artwork and that she didn't base it on the actors from the films. Her attention to detail really struck me and the different look gave the story a new life. It is very much her creation for me rather than Meyer's (although Meyer had approval of every page).

I hope they do more of the story as well as the rest of the series and the artwork continues to be as beautiful and moving.

Rating : 4.5/5
Number of Pages : 57
Format : Fiction, Poetry, Mythology, eBook
Reason for Reading : 10 10 10 Challenge

An interesting book that is prose but reads like poetry. It follows Psyche through her life interposing it upon Greek myths. She begins starring in her fathers violent and explicit films. A victim of abuse she finds it hard to let herself be loved. She makes her own choices, but these are not always the best ones and she loses her main love when she listens to the advice of others.

The tale comes full circle as she later has a daughter of her own and watches her make the same choices she did. It's like she is following her own footsteps through life, but she has to let her daughter go her own way like she did.

Mature themes and concepts, this is a short read but one that will stay with me for a long time. I love that she blends in the mythological aspects which is an interest of mine. I will definitely be reading more of her books in the future. I wonder if any of her novel mirrors her life as some of the characters reminded me very strongly of certain famous people.

Rating : 4.0/5
Number of Pages : 123 & 139
Series : #3 & 4 The Vampire Diaries
Format : Teenage Fiction, Vampire, eBook
Reason for Reading : L J Smith Challenge, to continue the series

The Fury

Elena isn't the same since her car crashed into a river. Everyone assumes the worst, but things are even worse than her friends imagine when Damon and Stefan find her. She is needed to help the boys fight an enemy long ago assumed gone. The brothers will need to put aside their feuding to help defeat this new enemy or Elena will be forced to make the ultimate sacrifice.

Dark Reunion

There is a new threat to the town and Bonnie calls upon Stefan to return and help out. Their town seems to draw evil to it and this is an evil that is somehow familar to Stefan. Another girl is dead and poor Vickie looks to be next. Tyler is still being a menace and something sinister is different about him. Bonnie has been seeing Elena in dark dreams, can she help bridge the gap and aid in the struggle against the dark forces surrounding the town.

This series was definitely worth sticking with. The first book was not great, but the story takes some very unexpected twists and turns as the books progress and I was drawn further and further in as the it unfolded. I look forward to reading The Return books which continue the story further.

Monday, April 05, 2010

A Friend in Need from Dead and Loving It

Rating : 3.5/5
Number of Pages : 52
Series : #4.5 Queen Betsy
Format : Urban Fantasy, Vampire, eBook
Reason for Reading : Vampire Series Challenge 2010, to continue with the series

New character and werewolf Antonia is introduced in this short story. She has left her pack as she has always been an outcast and no one wants to mate with her. Despite being a werewolf she is unable to change at the full moon and instead has the gift of prophecy. She knows she has to find Betsy and help her, but finds more than she bargained for when she discovers she is a vampire. There are also suprises in store for George the Fiend.

Undead and Unpopular

Rating : 4.0/5
Number of Pages : 145
Series : #5 Queen Betsy Series
Format : Urban Fantasy, Vampire, eBook
Reason for Reading : Vampire Series Challenge 2010, to continue with the series

A delegation of European vampires have arrived to pay respects to Betsy and Sinclair. In politics though they have left it very late to do this. When they arrive one of Betsy's friends is with her for a meeting about changing her human lover into a vampire so they can always be together. A shock is in store though as it turns out one of the European's was the one who sired her against her wishes. She demands his death which puts Betsy in the middle of a political struggle.

Undead and Uneasy

Rating : 4.0/5
Number of Pages : 258
Series : #6 Queen Betsy Series
Format : Urban Fantasy, Vampire, eBook
Reason for Reading : Vampire Series Challenge 2010, to continue with the series

Sinclair has finally coughed up with an engagement ring and seems on board with the wedding plans. However when Betsy's friends are all off on other errands strange things start happening to Betsy. First two people close to her die and then Sinclair disappears. Could it all be conincidence or is there a larger plot at work. Satan certainly seems to think so. Jessica spends the novel in the hospital where her cancer is getting worse and worse. Nick puts Betsy in a very difficult position as he would do anything to keep her alive or at least with him.

Undead and Unwed : A Honeymoon Story from Dead Over Heels

Rating : 3.5/5
Number of Pages : 33
Series : #6.5 Queen Betsy Series
Format : Urban Fantasy, Vampire, eBook
Reason for Reading : Vampire SeriesChallenge 2010, to continue with the series

Picks up the tale straight after the wedding on Betsy and Sinclair's honeymoon. They get more than they bargained for when Jessica and Nick tag along. Plus teenagers are being murdered near their hotel which looks to be more than just a coincidence. Can Nick get along with the vampires while they solve the mystery, or will his antagonism just make things worse.

I just love this series. They have me laughing out loud. Betsy is a fun character and I really like the supporting cast. I hope Antonia has more of a part in upcoming books. This is the end of a major plot arc seeing Betsy and Sinclair married so it will be interesting to see where Davidson takes the series next...

Rating : 4.0/5
Number of Pages : 66 each
Series : #1-3 Screm Street Series
Format : Children's Fiction, Vampire, eBook
Reason for Reading : 666 Challenge in 2009, 10 10 10 Challenge, to continue with the series

The first 3 books in the Scream Street series introduce us to the main characters Luke Watson (werewolf), Resus Negative (vampire) and Chloe Farr (mummy tomboy). Luke was a normal boy growing up with his parents when one day his whole family are transported into Scream Street by the mysterious Government Housing of Unusual Lifeforms (G.H.O.U.L.) movers. There Luke makes friends reluctantly while trying to find a way to go back home. He begins to settle in, but his human parents are having a very difficult time getting used to the strange characters and their supernatural abilities.

Luke and his two friends set out on a quest to regain all the original artefacts of the towns founders. In the first book they much find a fang of the original vampire, the second a vial of the witches blood and in the third the heart of the mummy who founded the town. They are guided by an author who trapped himself in his own book and are chased at every step in their journey by evil landlord Otto Sneer.

These are a fun read and can be enjoyed by older readers too. The illustrations are great and it have just the right amount of bite in them. It looks like another great children's Liverpool (go scousers!) writer is on the scene.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Rating : 4.5/5
Number of Pages : 258
Series : #3 Sookie Stackhouse Series
Format : Urban Fantasy, Vampire, eBook
Reason for Reading : Sookie Stackhouse Challenge, to continue with the series

Sookie Stackhouse, local barmaid and telepath, is back and in the middle of another supernatural mystery. Her boyfriend Vampire Bill is contacted by the Vampire Queen and sent on a mission but he goes missing in another vampires territory. Sookie has no choice but to go and look for him despite some unsettling news passed on from Eric and Pam about Bill's activities.

Helping Sookie is new character Alcide Herveaux who is a werewolf introducing more shifters and weres into the supernatural mix. They have to pretend to be a couple to infiltrate the vampires "Club Dead" in Mississippi to find out details of what has happened to Bill, but the chemistry flies for real. Too bad Alcide has a shifter ex fiance who has moved on to another that Alcide is still very much ung up on. In time though who knows what will happen between them.

A great addition to the series. These books just keep getting better and better. I really like Eric Northman and warmed to Alcide as well. I am not sure how much longer I give the relationship between Sookie and Bill after the events of this book and it will be interesting to see who she hooks up with next.

Rating : 4.0/5
Number of Pages : 321
Series : #4 Sookie Stackhouse Series
Format : Urban Fantasy, Vampire
Reason for Reading : Sookie Stackhouse Challenge, to continue with the series

One night Sookie is driving home from her barmaid job at Merlott's when she sees Eric (head of the Area 5 vampires) running down the road mostly naked. When she stops to find out what is going on it seems he has lost his memory and has no knowledge of who she is or even who he is. Sookie takes him home to protect him until the other vampires can turn up and explain this turn of events.

The skinny is that a coven of witches have moved into Eric's town and are trying to take over his business. The witches are extra powerful as they are all shifters and have been drinking vampire blood. As Bill is away in Peru Sookie turns to her brother Jason and werewolf Alcide for help. Soon after though her only surviving family member Jason goes missing after spending a night with a shifter so Sookie turns to Eric in a whole new way. She ends up stuck in the middle of a war between vampires, weres, shifters and wictches. She is mostly human so her chances of keeping her resolution to not get beaten up seems slim...

Again another great story to add to this excellent series. Romance, violence and supernatural creatures galore. I can't wait to come back to Sookie's world again soon.

Rating : 4.0/5
Number of Pages : 262
Series : #3 Looking Glass Wars
Format : Teenage Fiction, Fantasy, eBook
Reason for Reading : Series Challenge, to continue with the series

Alyss and her friends are back in the real Wonderland. The Heart Crystal has been depleted of energy and Alyss and those others possessing imagination can no longer use it. They have become sluggish and despondent. Plus the Spade soldiers are rounding up those who had imagination and putting them in camps. The Spade King and Queen have never had imagination and are set against it and trying to take over Wonderland.

Arch is still around as well and his relationship with Redd is being stretched to the limit. She is trying to hide from him that she has lost her imgaination and he has designs for taking over Wonderland and changing it from a Queenship to a Kingship. The caterpillars have their own agenda and Hatter and Molly are trying to work through their issues which takes them back to London and to a reluctant Charles. All the threads of the tale slowly begin to come together and wrap up the series.

I love the alternative world Beddor has created with much loved characters unveiling their reality. I also enjoy when his Wonderland crosses over with Charles in London. Although this storyline is nicely concluded I hope there will be further forays into Wonderland and more of the Hatter graphic novels.

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Rating : 4.5/5
Number of Pages : 494
Series : #7 Black Jewels
Format : Dark Fantasy, eBook
Reason for Reading : Series Challenge, to continue with the series

A welcome return to Anne Bishop's Black Jewels world sees the story continuing from The Shadow Queen. Cassidy has gained some support from the Warlords of Shalador and Dene Nehele. One still stands against her despite being sworn to be part of her inner circle. Luckily she has the care and companionship of Grey who is fast on track to becomming the Warlord he was always destined to be. He will never have his true strength as his Jewels have been decided, but he has a quiet power and stength that others are beginning to notice and follow.

An old rival of Cassidy's visits and turns her world upside down. She was responsible for Cassie's biggest heartache and seems set on repeating her behaviour. Cassie withdraws foresaking the positive effect she is having on the people and Grey and her Warlords battle to keep her with them and not hide herself away. Demon, Saetan and Lucivar all get involved as well as Witch and Surreal plus a healthy dose of Scheltie's led by Lady Vae so it looks like Cassie may have no choice but to stick around! The tangled webs though do not look good for the future of Dene Nehele...

I loved this addition to the series (of course!). Cassie is stronger than she thinks she is and very easy to connect with. As is Grey. I really enjoyed spending time getting to know her first circle better, the good and the misguided. I hope there are many more books to come in this series.