Archive for January, 2012

Teaser Tuesday #13

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly event, hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading. Anyone can participate, just make sure to read the rules by clicking here.

My teaser comes from Amy Ackley’s Sign Language, from page 291.

” I wanted to be with you today because, you know, I thought you might need someone. And if you needed someone, I wanted you to need me.”

I’m about 90% done with Sign Language and all I can say is, it’s brilliant. It’s such a moving and tear-jerking story, a real page turner. And this quote has been probably my favourite in this book – it’s so sweet.

What do you think? What is everyone reading this week? Make sure to leave a comment below with a link to your own teaser so that I can visit you and check out your awesomesauce books! xxx

In My Mailbox #18

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by The Story Siren. It’s our opportunity to get a sneak peek into what books everyone is received for review, borrowed from libraries, bought in bookshops and downloaded onto eReaders.

Hello and welcome back! :) I hope everyone had a nice week! I had a super great week book-wise and otherwise as well. Let’s get down to business and see what was in my mailbox this week. I got…

For review


Tempest
by Julie Cross (hardback) – SO excited about this one!
House on Plunkett Street by Lorena Bathey (ebook)
Straight to Hell by Michelle Scott (ebook)
The Starboard Sea by Amber Dermont (ebook)
Graffiti Moon by Cath Crowley (ebook)
Life is But a Dream by Brian James (ebook)

Gifted

A purse and a cute little Union Jack charm, along with some lovely bookmarks from Nat @ Besotted with Books. I love them, they’re so cute! AND they remind me of London until I can go back to the UK :)
Plus
Divergent by Veronica Roth, sent by the lovely Kayleigh @ K-Books
I’m SO looking forward to reading this one! Thank you guys! *hugs*

AND! I got auto-approved for Macmillan Children’s Books’ titles on Netgalley!!!! Yeee-haw!

So, that’s it for this week. :) What did you get this time around? Feel free to leave a comment below with a link to your own IMM and I’ll visit you back asap. x x x

PS: I have a special event coming up very soon so stay tuned! :)

Review: Twenties Girl – Sophie Kinsella

Title: Twenties Girl
Author: Sophie Kinsella
Publication date: January 28th 2010
Publisher: Black Swan (Transworld Publishers)
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 978-0-552-77437-6
Genre: Chick-lit

Order from Amazon US  | The Book Depository | Barnes & Noble

If you suddenly had a friend that only you could see or hear, what would you do?

You could worry that your stressful life has tipped you over the edge and you have lost the plot, big time… you could hide under your duvet, hoping that they would go away… or you could have some fun… You could make your ex boyfriend take you back…You could solve the mystery of the dragonfly necklace, make a fool of yourself many times, get your business back on its feet… You could dance with a gorgeous man who just can’t resist you… And you could just discover the best friend you ever had.

Sophie Kinsella has been one of my favourite authors for at least five or six years – I picked up one of her books, ‘Can You Keep a Secret?‘ a few years back and I fell in love with her style and became a huge fan right away. In the past few year, I’ve read all of her books – the whole Shopaholic series and each novel she published, except Twenties Girl. And now that I was finally able to sit down and read it, I’m more certain than ever that no matter what she writes, it’s guaranteed to be the best book you’ve ever read.

Twenties Girl follows the story of Lara, niece to a millionaire guy called Bill Lington who runs a successful coffee chain all over the world. Lara is an ordinary twenty-something businesswoman who works at a head-hunting company she set up with her best friend Natalie.. right until Natalie decides to disappear, leaving her in the lurch, not having the slightest clue what to do or how to run the company all alone. To make things even worse, her mother has anxiety problems, she just broke up with her boyfriend Josh and to top it all, she has to attend her great-aunt’s funeral as well. At the funeral, Sadie’s (the great-aunt’s) 23-year-old self appears as a ghost but as it turns out, only Lara can see and hear her, no one else. She tells Lara about her dragonfly necklace – something she wore at a time when she was genuinely happy and something without which she can’t rest – and wouldn’t leave her alone until she promises to find out where it is. I could go on and on about the story but I don’t want to give too much away.

Twenties Girl was nothing but pure brilliance. Kinsella’s writing is something that I absolutely adore – you can’t help clinging to every word she says, every word she puts down on paper – it’s amazing. Very witty, sometimes sarcastic and immensely funny, her style is just great. She writes with such ease and depth that she never fails to captivate her readers from the very first page. She managed to laugh out loud and cry almost at the same time and even though the story itself is laugh-out-loud funny, the ending is very emotional.


Along with the great writing style came an amazing plot – even after a whole series and several standalone novels, she manages to write something completely original and unique. What I loved about it most is the characters. Sadie – the ghost – started to annoy me at times but still, her friendship with Lara was something I really liked about the story. If I had to pick a favourite character, it’d either be Lara (because of her sarcasm and witty remarks) or Ed – an American guy who rarely smiles, lives in his own little shell, puts on a tough exterior and doesn’t really open up … until she meets Lara. Ed reminded me of myself in this respect and I found his character easily relatable.

In short, Twenties Girlis a definite must-have: it’s a real page turner that won’t let you put it down. Wonderfully witty, laugh-out-loud funny and highly emotional at the same time, it will definitely stay with you for a long time. Simply brilliant.

Rating:

Follow Friday #1

Follow Friday is a weekly event hosted by Parajunkee and Alison Can Read– it’s my first Follow Friday post but it looks like a great way to discover new blogs and make new friends so I decided to jump on the bandwagon. I’m really looking forward to meeting you all!

If you want to subscribe to my blog, you can follow me via GFC, RSS, email or Networked blogs as well – each of them can be found on the sidebar.

Q: Which book genre do you avoid at all costs and why?

A: I avoid all types of non-fiction books – memoirs, short stories, biographies, etc. I’ve never been fond of non-fiction to be honest. When it comes to fiction, I usually try to give each genre a shot. :) There are a few types of books I don’t really enjoy, though. Science fiction or historical fiction have never been my favourites – these are the two genres I probably wouldn’t pick up in a bookshop. Although I’ve been trying to broaden my horizons since I started blogging and I find myself reading books I wouldn’t have read under normal circumstances. I’ve never really read any paranormal books before I started my blog (I know, I know…) but now I don’t refuse these type of books either. Blogging has definitely been a great experience so far. :)

What genre do you try to avoid?

Bookish Ramblings: What Bloggers Hate The Most a.k.a Dos and Don’ts for Authors

I’ve been thinking about this thing for a while but never got round to actually writing about it: up until now. As a book blogger, I get an increasing number of review requests (which I’m very grateful for!), I use social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter … but there are certain things that have been bugging me for a while. Which is kind of a response to Kate’s fabulous article with some additions from me.

How not to behave on the Internet and how to approach book bloggers and request reviews.

How to behave on Twitter: I’m not an author but I can imagine how hard it is to get enough reviews and find bloggers to review your book – it’s a tremendous amount of work. I know it’s hard and I know you’d like to advertise your book, but believe me, sometimes less is more. What I mean is this. There are a lot of people out there who use Twitter to advertise their work, which is completely fine. Until you go overboard and become annoying. Just a few examples:

Do not tweet “My book is only $2.34 on Amazon right now. Go buy a copy, you’ll love it” every 30 seconds. We get the point. Your book is out and you’d like to sell it but there’s no need to literally flood our Timeline by tweeting the exact same message 7815 times a day. Even if you tweet about it 2 or 3 times a day, those of us who are interested in your book will go and check it out. As opposed to this, if I see the same tweets all over my Timeline, there’s no way I’m going to click on it.

Do turn off auto-response: see above. I do not want to buy your book or like you on Facebook. If I do, I will anyway, without you sending me computer-generated messages.

Do learn to use hashtags. Hashtags are great unless #you #use #them #a million #times #in #every #sentence.

Do stay in touch with fellow authors and bloggers. If someone @mentions you, or sends you a link to their review of your book, at least say thank you. Even such small gestures like favouriting our tweets or retweeting them means a lot to us! It takes one second but it can make our day. :o)

How to approach bloggers and request book reviews:

Here comes the tricky part. There are several things that might be big no-no’s but we all have our own pet peeves, I suppose. I’ll tell you some of mine.

People emailing me without reading my review policy. For me this is the biggest no-no and I know I’m not the only one who says this. I’ve had people asking me to review their memoirs, their non-fiction books, books from the erotica and religious genre – which would be fine if my review policy didn’t state clearly that I do not review any of the genres listed above. Which, of course, means that the person in question didn’t read my review policy and it’s a waste of time for both of us. It’s a waste of time for him/her because they spent x minutes composing and sending me the email and I’m not going to accept their book anyway. I know emailing bloggers takes a lot of time but I do agree with Kate on this one: “Yes, it takes time to read each review policy and tailor each query. But you know what takes a lot MORE time? Reading your book (10-15 hours), writing up and formatting a review post (30 min? 1 hour? 2 hours?), promoting the post, and cross-posting the review on AmazonB&NGoodreads.”

Requesting book reviews via Facebook or Twitter. Seriously? I’ve had people -and once again, I’m not the only one – requesting reviews via social networking sites before and I still don’t get it. How do you know what type of books we like? If you add us on Facebook/Twitter, go and check out our blog (and review policy!!!) and THEN DM or tweet us, that’s okay. But most of the time it’s not the case. In a nutshell, please take the time to open your browser, visit our blog, read the policy and email us.

Of course these are my opinions only and I don’t want to hurt or criticize anyone – take it as constructive criticism. :-)

What do you think? What are your biggest pet peeves?

Teaser Tuesday #12

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly event, hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading. Anyone can participate, just make sure to read the rules by clicking here.

My teaser comes from Sophie Kinsella’s Twenties Girl, from page 29.

[The vicar and Lara’s -the main character’s- family are talking about her great-aunt who has just passed away at the age of 105 but literally no-one in the family knew her]

‘Did you never visit her?’ The vicar is clearly forcing herself to stay polite.
‘Of course we did!’ says mum defensively.’We popped in to see her in…’ She thinks. ‘1982, I think it was. Lara was a baby.’
1982?’ The vicar looks scandalized.

Hahahaha, oh dear. I actually laughed out loud when I read this part last night. I don’t know if it sounds funny now that it’s taken out of context but believe me, it does when you’re reading it! :) This book has been sitting on my bookshelf for a very long time – and when I say very long, I mean it. I think I bought it sometime last year or even before that and I have no clue why I haven’t read this before. I adore Sophie’s books so I’m sure it’s going to be a fun read. 46 pages in, I’m in love with it already!

What is everyone reading this week? Make sure to leave a comment below with a link to your own teaser so that I can visit you and check out your awesomesauce books! xxx

A Winter’s Respite Read-a-Thon 2012 – sign in post

So, the time has finally come – I’m done with my exams, wahoooo! Which means that I’ll be able to go back to reading and blogging full time for a few weeks at least. And what better way to start these few weeks than to take part in a read-a-thon!

This one is organized by the True Book Addict and it’s called the Winter’s Respite read-a-thon. It runs from January 23rd to 29th, with lots of mini-challenges and giveaways. You can also chat with other read-a-thoners using the #wintersrespite hashtag on Twitter. 

I have lots of books to be read and reviewed and since I’m participating in the 2012 TBR Reading Challenge as well, I should probably read some books off my TBR pile as well. Too many books, too little time. Ha! Anyway, what I’m gonna do now is list all the books I’m aiming to read within this one week. I’m definitely a mood reader so there’s a chance I may change my mind later but I’ll try to stick to these books as closely as I can. Okay, so let’s see what’s on my TBR list for this week.

1. Spider’s Web by Agatha Christie
2. Love Unfinished by Darian Wilk
3. Gone by Michael Grant
4. Twenties Girl by Sophie Kinsella

Click on the titles to check them out on Goodreads – and click on the photo to enlarge. :-)

Since I belong to the slow readers’ category, I probably won’t be able to finish them all, but we’ll see. I’ll read as many as I can but the most important thing now is to have fun, isn’t it? ;) I’m really looking forward to meeting new people during #WintersRespite – I’m sure it’s going to be tremendous fun!

Would you like to join in? You can still sign up by clicking here.