Today I’m here to tell you about Becoming Death and my top five reasons why I think you should definitely read it!
As if being Death’s minion wasn’t strenuous enough, Madison finds herself back at school with her worst enemy studying the ancient rules, methods and paperwork of her vocation. In a cascade of life changes: her best friend admits he’s in love with her and she starts a new job as a professional mourner, but she can’t help thinking her family might have other secrets.
Just when things are finally starting to feel normal again Death throws her a curveball: her next victim is her best friend. Madison must find a way to overcome the strict guidelines of being a grim reaper in order to save his life.
Top Five Reasons to Read Becoming Death
If you know anything about me, you’ll know that I am a little bit obsessed with the afterlife. I love horror stories, love books about ghosts, love films about them, and in that category fits grim reapers. I haven’t read many books that involve grim reapers (recs, anyone?) so when I heard this one involved them, I knew I had to read it. I loved the way they were represented in this book!
Grim Reapers have essentially been a part of folklore for a very long time – I don’t know the specifics but I’m fairly certain they’ve been talked about for many, many years. Thus, a lot of the info surrounding them is a little outdated. So I loved that in this book the Grim Reapers were very modern, using tech gadgets and apps too.
I also love that aside from just being morbid, this book incorporates a lot of black humour – very English, I must say! I, myself, have a very dark humour and so I really loved this aspect of the book!
Atop of all of that, this book is incredibly addictive. It pulls you in and keeps you intrigued from the very start until the very end. There is just something about the plot and the characters and the writing that has you itching to return to it – exactly what I needed in the midst of a bad reading slump!
As well as being addictive, or perhaps because of it, this book is also fast-paced. Everything moves lightening quick which keeps your eyes moving across the page and your hands (fingers, as I read on kindle) turning the pages rapidly. It really made the book more intense and interesting.
So those are just my top five reasons why you should read this book. Other great features include strong, relatable characters, urban setting and the real question of whether Grim Reapers actually exist…
But don’t just take my word for it. Read these fab reviews from the tour about the book too:
Melissa Brown an American author that lives in Norwich, England. She is a teacher in ICT skills, English and creative writing. In 2014, she was shortlisted for the IdeasTap Inspires: Writers’ Centre Norwich Writing Competition and longlisted for the Nottingham Writers’ Club’s inaugural National Short Story Competition. She was also a featured poet at the Norwich: City of Stories launch event, where she did a live reading of my poem ‘The Library.’ She enjoys films, books, comics, fangirling and subscription boxes. She blames her love of the written word on her hometown library and fanfiction. She lives with her partner, Kris, and her awesome cat, Hailey.
Would you like to win a cool necklace inspired by Becoming Death?
What about your very own copy of the book?
Then enter this brill giveaway that ends on Monday 24th August!
Would you like to read Becoming Death?
So today I have for you all a review of The Hive Construct by Alexander Maskill and then a brilliant guest post from the author too.
Hope you enjoy!
Situated deep in the Sahara Desert, New Cairo is a city built on technology – from the huge, life-giving solar panels that keep it functioning in a radically changed, resource-scarce world to the artificial implants that have become the answer to all and any of mankind’s medical problems.
But it is also a divided city, dominated by a handful of omnipotent corporate dynasties.
And when a devastating new computer virus begins to spread through the poorest districts, shutting down the life-giving implants that enable so many to survive, the city begins to slide into the anarchy of violent class struggle.
Hiding amidst the chaos is Zala Ulora. A gifted hacker and fugitive from justice, she believes she might be able to earn her life back by tracing the virus to its source and destroying it before it destroys the city. Or before the city destroys itself . . .
With its vivid characters, bold ideas and explosive action, The Hive is science fiction at its most exciting, inventive and accessible.
When I first heard about this book, I jumped on the chance to read it because it sounded like an incredible book. And it was. I’d actually been in the middle of an extremely long and extremely frustrating reading slump where no book could hold my attention for very long and then I started reading The Hive Construct and I simply struggled to put it down. It frustrated me when I had to and it was constantly on my mind when I wasn’t reading it. This book was powerful from the very beginning until the very end and I am incredibly glad that I decided to read it.
One of the things that I absolutely loved about this book, aside from the amazing writing style, was the way that the book was layed out. I loved that it jumped from different characters on different sides of everything. It made you feel like you were watching a movie instead of reading a book as you got to know every little thing about what was going on but also all the added bonuses of reading a book with emotional detail and thought processes. I also loved the world-building and the world in general. The idea that one day we will all have computer implants to help us better our lives and work ethics is both scary and potentially real. It really made this book that much more fascinating to me.
By far my favourite character in this book was Zala. I love how fiesty she is and I thought her back story was so heartbreaking but also turned her into an incredible character. I loved Alice as well, I thought she was so well written and I loved hearing more about her story. Somehow Alexander has created a book with characters that you can’t help but feel emotional about and you end up unsure which side of the agenda you sit. It’s incredibly effective and just makes the book that much more interesting to read.
Overall this book is one that I am certain I will return to. I will also definitely be keeping an eye on Alexander Maskill from now on to make sure that I don’t miss his next book. I loved that it pulled me in straight away. I loved that it was a world you could literally imagine coming to pass and I loved that the characters were strong and intricate – because I love characters and character-driven stories. This book is one that makes you think, the makes you emotional, and one that you will definitely not want to miss out on. So, what are you waiting for? Go get reading!
** I received this copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated nor was I required to write a positive review. **
Top 5 Sci-fi
This isn’t to say that I don’t like science fiction, just that my exposure through books is limited. As such, here below are the five science fiction works that are nearest and dearest to my heart.
The Mass Effect series of games is one of the few times where I’ve genuinely engaged with the worldbuilding elements of a science fiction work as an end of its own. There’s a richness and an emotional authenticity to the Mass Effect universe that makes the whole thing incredibly compelling to me. I find myself reading the long, detailed database entries detailing the minutiae of the setting where I’d skip them anywhere else. More importantly, the range of experiences this series imparts is astounding, yet it never loses touch with a core humanity that grounds and makes relevant every element that might otherwise be left floating in space. This series was a significant enough influence on The Hive Construct that I essentially think of it as being The Wire meets Mass Effect. I would watch a Mass Effect TV show. I would buy a regular Mass Effect comic book series. I would write a regular Mass Effect comic book series (call me, Bioware). It’s hard to think of any other job I’d rather have than working on this series, and one of those other jobs is one I’m currently in the process of applying for in the same industry, so I’d better not stress this fact too much in case they read this and wonder about my potential loyalties.
I was a child of the mid-00’s manga boom. This is just a fact my generation is going to have to live with; you can either move past it or become one of those people on Tumblr who ironically poses with full-sized dakimakura they certainly did not buy ironically. I have a certain resident amount of affection for a decent selection of manga and anime (as will be made clear later in this list) even if my interest in it as an aesthetic has waned and my alienation with its surrounding subculture has matured into outright aversion. So I don’t mean it as an insult when I say that Akira transcends manga. I mean it as a testament to the enormity of Katsuhiro Otomo’s achievement. To me, he’s contemporary to the late, great Jean “Moebius” Giraud as far as visionaries of future landscapes go; there’s a detail and specificity to the line of his ink pen that I can’t find an equal to anywhere else. The more famous film adaptation of the same name is beautiful but incoherent; as a manga, Akira is a sprawling, heartfelt epic and an elevation of the comic book form. It is a uniquely Japanese story – a reflection on The Bomb and on its topical juvenile delinquency problem – and it does feel Japanese, despite clearly being influenced by western fiction. Akira’s ambitions, however, take it beyond nationality or scene or aesthetic; it’s a story of the personal and the apocalyptic, of the all-permeating drive for destruction, well beyond just being story of biker gang kids in over their heads against a sinister cyberpunk conspiracy.
This is probably cheating. I’m only a bit into season three. I don’t care. The X-Files is outstanding. It’s as much a cultural exploration of the secret history of America as a science fiction show; a chance for the post-Cold War zeitgeist to slow down and reflect on all the atrocities the US committed in service of strangling the life out of the USSR. It embodies that post-Berlin Wall, pre-9/11 collective consciousness wading through its guilty conscience and exposing its strangest and most shameful nooks and crannies to the world. But really, the dynamic between Mulder and Scully is the glue that holds the show together. As someone who’s been living in a post-X-Files world for so many decades, I’d never appreciated how reductive and misguided so much of the broader cultural understanding of these characters is; there are far more layers of depth and authenticity to these characters and their relationship than many give the show credit for. The worst thing I can say about it at the moment is that its level of quality is inconsistent. The best thing I can say about it is that it’s frequently brilliant. I maintain that “Clyde Bruckman’s Final Repose” is one of the best single episodes of television ever. I’m eternally grateful to comedian/”The X-Files Files” host Kumail Nanjiani, whose passion for this show inspired me to give it a try long after my last ex failed to do so. And if anyone spoils any future episodes for me after this, I’m coming after you. I already had two different podcasts I listen to spoil “Home”.
Has any franchise in history been retrospectively devalued more than The Matrix? Much of its legacy has become tainted by sloppy, redundant sequels and unimpressive follow-up projects from its creators, and it genuinely saddens me that this is the case. I was about ten when I first watched The Matrix and it blew my mind. It kick-started my interest in philosophy and opened my eyes to how, with a little imagination, you can apply theme to the rest of the work in all sorts of bizarre and unique ways. I was just smart enough of a ten year old that I got something from The Matrix I’d never gotten before – a hint of eastern spirituality, a dash of entry-level philosophy, a look at some truly awful fashion choices – and not smart enough to notice any of its missteps.
I’m not sure this film will profit from much re-evaluation; it had its sizeable flaws, and large parts of it have aged horribly. But there’s this weird thing pop culture does where it tends to burden innovative works with the sins of their imitators, and I feel like that’s happened here. It’s gotten to the point where I’ve heard smart people act amazed and incredulous at the prospect that the Matrix is a metaphor for societal systems of control, as though the film makes any attempt to hide its grander ambitions for philosophical and sociological commentary. This film has become less of an underappreciated gem than a total cultural blind spot, and I don’t feel it deserves this. It holds a place in my heart, and at the very least it deserves better than the corners of Reddit which currently most identify with it.
Neon Genesis Evangelion/End of Evangelion
While we’re on the topics of relics of the 90’s I’m a massive apologist for, I spent a good many of my teenage years calling Neon Genesis Evangelion my favourite pop-culture thing. It wasn’t a good call, and my cultural sensibilities weren’t nearly as refined as I thought they were. At the same time it had a huge impact on my artistic identity, to the point where I wouldn’t be the writer I am today without it (for better or worse). I learned something from Neon Genesis Evangelion I hadn’t ever learned from any other work of media; the value of character flaws.
That’s not to say I hadn’t ever taken in that certain characters had flaws before, but the flaws of the main cast of NGE are so obvious that it’s simply much harder to miss the effect it has on the story. Shinji Ikari is a neglected, resentful wreck. Asuka Soryu is an egotistical, fragile wreck. Rei Ayanami is a repressed, disconnected wreck. Makoto Katsunagi is an insecure, lonely wreck. I’d never seen heroes like this before. I believed their shortcomings, I recognized the power in them overcoming these deficiencies throughout the first half of the series, and I appreciated the credibility of the horror as events began to spiral out of their control throughout the rest of the story. Like all the best tragedy, the events of Neon Genesis Evangelion seemed unlikely, and then seemed inevitable. These characters felt like people in a way I’d never seen before then, so full of contradiction and bravado, with the underlying chaos of their psyches given potentially world-ending weight. The story never felt like it was flattering them; indeed, it seemed to take pleasure in drawing out the worst of their personal demons and allowing them to only scrape by, revealing more and more dimensions to their personalities and relationships.
It was also the work that taught me the value of deconstruction – of examining our cultural indulgences and evaluating whether all this might not be unhealthy. I couldn’t watch other anime for a long time after NGE; it skewered them all so effectively, even works which drew on NGE itself for influence. It’s been a shame seeing the way each character has been retrospectively cast by the fandom into the exact archetypes they so brutally tore apart, with their original portrayals outright rejected in many ways.
Most importantly, Neon Genesis Evangelion taught me the relationship between the trappings of a speculative fiction work and the human stories at their core. Neon Genesis Evangelion, taken as its own series, is the story of a young man learning to take control of his own life and, even in the darkest times, coming to believe that he deserves happiness; the story around him certainly puts him through the wringer to get him to this point, but it ends on a triumphant note. NGE, taken with the End of Evangelion ending movie, is the story of that same young man failing to grow or learn anything because of defensiveness built from resentment, ultimately becoming an impotent slave to his own spite and disconnection. That’s a different story, but it also uses the science fiction world around it and the events within to explore it. The way in which these personal struggles radiate outwards and resonate thematically at every level of the work was frankly revelatory to me at the time.
I don’t think it’s something I’d go back and watch now. I haven’t tried in a long time, and I only made it all the way through the first time. I have no interest in watching the new films. As mentioned above, I’m just not intrigued by anime and manga anymore. But Neon Genesis Evangelion left an indelible mark on my creative identity, the magnitude of which I don’t think is equalled by any other work, so it makes the list.
Rainbow Wars!: Why You Will Love Landline
I’m here today to battle it out with other Rainbow fans to find out which book is best! I’m championing Landline! I love this book so much and I really hope you agree! There’s also a chance to win a signed copy!! Eeeeek!
Reasons I love Landline
1. Magical Realism
One of my favourite things about Landline is that it contains magical realism. It’s a story that in a modern world, is unlikely to happen but the possibility it might makes it so much cuter and lovely. It opens up a bridge between reality and magic – who doesn’t love that?
2. Neal is adorable
Both as a young teenager and an older man, Neal is just so charming. He’s protective and loyal and he just made my heart ache. He does so much for his family. I was so happy with how it all ended – as I’m sure you will be too.
3. There is an overwhelming amount of cuteness
No, really, there is! Between the two timezones, flashbacks and complete love between our main protagonists, you will fall into a deep void of cuteness. You’ll want to go “ahhh”, and “awww” and squee a fair amount to. It’s the perfect book to make your heart sing.
4. A love so deep and real
What I love so much about Landline is that it depicts a strong and intense love. But it doesn’t paint it as amazing and always the answer. It shows you what love is really about. It reminds you that love is the basis of the relationship and then you have hard work and commitment on top to make it work. Love isn’t the only thing keeping this family together.
5. It is a bucket full of Hope
The ending of this book is incredibly well done. It shows that even in the darkest times, one can still find hope. I absolutely adored this about the book. Everything together meant that there simply had to be hope for the future. It reminds us all that where we are now and how we feel right now isn’t the end, merely a stop on our journey.
So those are the main reasons why I love this book so much. It also, of course, is written by Rainbow Rowell which is a major plus point as all her books are wonderful!
Are you on TeamLandline?
Landline is released in paperback today, will you be grabbing your copy?
Find out who is championing the other books and what they have to say about them!
You can win your very own copy of Landline which will be signed by Rainbow Rowell!
Entrants must reside in the UK or IRL.
No purchase necessary.
Winners will be notified by e-mail.
Winners will have 28 days to claim their prize.
This giveaway is being sponsored by Orion Books.
Entrants must be 13 years or older or have express permission from a parent or guardian.
Giveaway ends: 14th August 2015
Today I have a great guest post from my wonderful Blogger Spotlight, Mel. Mel is here to talk to us about Encouraging Children to Read!
When Faye contacted me to be her Blogger Spotlight of the month I was overwhelmed and grabbed the opportunity with both hands. She then told me about writing a guest post, which I’ve never done before and was really stuck on what to write about without boring
you all to death. Then Faye gave me the idea of writing about my favourite childhood book which is wayyy too tricky to pick just one, but this gave me another idea. So I may still bore you all to death but have a little read and see what you think.
I decided to talk about encouraging children to read. I have always been a reader and someone who enjoys a good book. I inherited this from my Mum who basically role modelled the idea of reading as a past-time. However, a lot of children today don’t have that role model and of course they have a little thing called the internet.
I work in a primary school and could not believe the amount of children in their one or two week half-terms, spending all their time on an Xbox, PlayStation or just generally on the internet. To mention to those children the idea of reading a book for fun is blasphemy, as if you’re an alien with six heads! This experience got me thinking about encouraging children to read outside of school and not just reading the compulsory school books sent home each week.
My idea to encourage them was simple. Bring a book into work and be their role model. I decided that on every school trip I would take my current read and read on the coach journey there and back. At first, the children simply looked at me like I was doing something illegal, to read in public?! SHOCKING! But gradually, they became curious by the second or third time of seeing me doing it and began to question me.
“Miss, why do you have a book?”
“I like reading when I’m bored. It’s like escaping to a different World”
That was just one conversation that made me understand that children need an ambition to read. A reason as to why they should read and not just because they had to for school. A week later, the same child came up to me and said “MISS! I like reading now. Have you read The Hunger Games?”
That made me so happy, to hear that I’d encouraged a child into reading for the fun of it, and once one child followed my lead, the rest joined in too!
“Miss, my Mum bought me the Bear Grylls book, you know the army man?”
“Miss, I like made-up stories”
“Miss, have you heard of Thor? What does ‘myth’ mean?”
What do you think? How do you encourage children to read?
Today I have for you all a lovely interview with the wonderful Mel! I hope you enjoy getting to know her better. Don’t forget to follow her on twitter and read her blog/watch her videos to really get to know her!
Tell us a little something about yourself!
I have an extreme obsession with Volkswagen Campervans. Seriously, it’s a way of life.
How long have you had your blog?/
Since February, so 5 months!
Do you enjoy running your blog?
I really do! It’s sparked my ambition for writing again, and helps me to keep up with my reviews.
When you started, did you ever think it would end up the way it has?
Honestly? No. I thought i’d be writing to no-one. Like no-one would bother reading or interacting with my blog. How wrong I was!
Is there an interesting background story to the name of your blog?
Basically, my name is Melanie and my mum has always called me a variety of nicknames from Melly, to Moo, to Poppus Mai! So when I started my YouTube channel I needed a name and could not think of something catchy. Anyway, it was my boyfriend who suggested reviving my nickname and HEY PRESTO! The Book Moo was born.
As we’ve got this far without mentioning it, why not tell us a little something about your blog? What you post, how it runs, who you cater to, etc
My blog is for book lovers. No matter who you are, where you’re from or what genre you’re into, i’d like to think you can find something that appeals to you on my blog. I aim to post every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, so you should never be bored! Also, there are a few segments that you’ll always see floating about, which are: Tuesday Talks, Top 5 Wednesday’s, Hot Key Hauls, Netgalley News and wayyyy more!
Do you participate or host blog memes? If you do, which is your favourite?
I have participated in quite a few memes on my YouTube channel, of the same name, but not really that many on my blog I don’t think! If I have the definition of a meme correct…
What about blog tours? Have you ever or do you ever participate in them?
I absolutely love blog tours, like seriously they are my favourite posts. I’ve participate in 4 or 5 blog tours so far and cannot wait to join in with more hosted by the lovely Faye!
What is the best book you read in 2014?
This was so tricky because I read so many amazing books last year, but i’m going to have to say Cinder by Marissa Meyer. I just loved the World so much, and i’m pretty much obsessed with The Lunar Chronicles! I cannot contain my excitement for the final book, Winter, in November.
What about so far in 2015?
Okay, i’ve narrowed it down to three, that’s okay right Faye? This is in no order whatsoever. Lies Like Love by Louisa Reid, An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir and Noughts & Crosses by Malorie Blackman. Wow is the word to describe these books. Go and read them right now.
Has there ever been a book that you haven’t been able to finish? If so, what was it? And why couldn’t you finish?
The Iron King by Julie Kagawa. For some reason, I just couldn’t get into the World of the Fae. I don’t know if it’s because it was my first fairy book or because I didn’t really like the character that much. It didn’t stop me buying both Talon and Rogue though!
What is your favourite book genre?
YA and i’ve been on a major Fantasy kick lately!
Quick Fire Round
ebook or hardcopy?
YA or Adult?
Vampires or Werewolves?
Vampires because Damon Salvatore…
Chocolate or Vanilla?
Harry Potter or Twilight?
Harry Potter by a long shot.
Four or Peeta?
Peeta simply because I haven’t read the Divergent series. I know, I know, put the pitchforks away.
Series or Single?
Blogger or WordPress?
And finally, is there anything else you would like to say about you or your blog?
Simply, drop by and have a read! Don’t hesitate to contact me on my blog, YouTube channel, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, anywhere! I’m under the same name on everything so I shouldn’t be too hard to find. I’m always happy to talk books with other book fanatics so WOO!
You can also follow Mel on twitter here!
Sorry for not having any posts going up recently. I got a little busier than expected and struggled to find any time to sit down and write but I finally have some time – yay! And so today I wanted to tell you a little bit about why I’ve become so busy lately.
A New Venture
As you can probably tell from this title, I’ve set myself on a new venture and that is that I have started a new businessindependent distributor for Forever Living Products. What this means is that I retail a large selection of amazing products which range from health, wellness, beauty, fitness and weight management. All the products are aloe vera based and are of high quality.
Already I have tried a selection of the products and love them so much. Skin problems that I’ve had for years are disappearing, my anti-bacterial has a lovely and fresh smell and I feel so very excited about trying the rest of the products at my disposal.
If you’re interested in looking at the products, you can do so here . If you’d like to purchase anything, comment below, email me (email@example.com) or catch me on twitter (@daydreamin_star) and use the code BLOG1 and you’ll get a special promotional offer.
If you’re interested in a sample pack of the products to have a test of what they’re like, comment below, email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) or catch me on twitter (@daydreamin_star).
Online Business Launch
I’m also hosting an online business launch for my new business – which I’ve named Living Pure. This is happening tomorrow (Thursday 23rd July) at 8pm DST. It is also happening on Facebook.
If you’re interested, have a Facebook account and want to join, let me know in the comments, email or on twitter and I’ll invite you!
The event will tell you a little bit more about the products – including the ones I’ve used – will have a few testimonials and it will also have some games, quizzes and prizes to be won! It should last for an hour, maybe an hour and a half and it’d be great to see you there.
Furthermore, if you know anyone else who may be interested, do send them my way!
A Better Lifestyle
If you’ve been following this blog for a while or know me from twitter then you probably know that I’m a very active person and that I’ve been changing what I eat to become a little healthier. So I’m really excited about everything that Forever Living has to offer for this side of my life.
I already plan to do our Clean 9, which is a way to cleanse the body and get it ready for a weight loss programme. It’s a brilliant way to kick start a new lifestyle with habits that are all for the better.
Then I will be looking into our weight management programmes to see if I can finally get my weight down so that I fit within the healthy BMI level.
If you also know me, you’ll know that I have no problem with my weight – yes I want to lose some weight to be healthier but it’s not an appearance problem for me. And that’s why I like this programme because it’s a fantastic way to lead a healthier and more nutritional lifestyle.
If you’ve gotten to here and still reading, thank you!
I just wanted to say that I am looking for some team members for my new business so if you’re an enthusiastic, passionate and driven person, I’d love to have you join me!
Reasons you may want to join:
- To earn an extra few hundred pounds a month
- Job flexibility
- To get the products at amazing rates
- Job security
- To help people change their lives
If any of the above sounds interesting to you, do let me know and I will happily discuss everything in more detail!
That’s all for now! Sorry it was a long post but I’m REALLY excited about my new business and hope to see some of you at my launch and look forward to hearing from you about the products and business opportunity too!
ALSO: The company is global so if you don’t live in the UK, do still get in touch!
Title:Little Black Lies
Author: Sharon Bolton
Publisher: Transworld Publishers
Published: 2nd July 2015
Source:: Review Copy
Add It: Goodreads, Amazon UK, The Book Depository
What’s the worst thing your best friend could do to you?
Admittedly, it wasn’t murder. A moment’s carelessness, a tragic accident – and two children are dead. Yours.
Living in a small island community, you can’t escape the woman who destroyed your life. Each chance encounter is an agonizing reminder of what you’ve lost—your family, your future, your sanity.
How long before revenge becomes irresistible?
With no reason to go on living, why shouldn’t you turn your darkest thoughts into deeds?
So now, what’s the worst thing you can do to your best friend?
When I first saw this book and it’s tagline, I knew that I had to read it. It sounded creepy and thrilling, two things that I absolutely love in books. Thus I jumped on the chance to review it. After reading the first page, I was hooked. It has an incredibly powerful and strong opening which continued throughout the rest of the book too. I really loved this book right through to the very end. It tugged me in many different directions, had a fair few twists and turns and by the end of it, made me very eager to read more books by Sharon Bolton.
As the title suggests, everything in this book is not exactly what it seems. One thing I absolutely adored about this book was the way it was narrated. I don’t want to spoil too much but it definitely keeps the reader on tender hooks. Just when you’re certain you know what’s going on, it all gets pulled out from under you. It is a brilliant writing technique that really made this thriller more intense and exciting. I loved the way it all came together and how you got to know each of the different characters in different ways too. Very well written and I loved the final conclusion as well!
This story focusses on three main characters and my favourite of them is Catrin. I thought she had such a strong voice and I loved reading about her. There was so much to her character but I loved how vulnerable and strong she was all at the same time and how this was portrayed. I admired the journey she took and loved where she ended up. My second favourite was Callum. Strong, dependable, loyal and broken Callum. I thought he was amazing to read about, full of depth with an incredible background. He was an intense character to read about. Lastly there is Rachel. I wasn’t overly fond of her but by the end of the novel, I had certainly changed my mind about her. An extraordinary character carrying an awful lot on her shoulders. All the characters were written and portrayed wonderfully.
Little Black Lies is an immersive read. It pulls you in and keeps you there until the very end. It is written in the most beautiful writing that is full of imagery that you can see in your minds eye. It’s intense, emotional and powerful and I just really loved everything about it. I would not have any problems recommending this book to others as I think it is very well done. So if you’re looking for a book that will keep you on tender hooks throughout, will pull you one way and then another and will have you dying to know what has happened and what is going on, then I highly recommend you read this book. I’m fairly certain that you won’t regret it.
** I received this copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated nor was I required to write a positive review. **
Today is my stop on the Be A Happier Parent with NLP blog tour and I have for you a very powerful and insightful guest post from the wonderful author, Judy Bartkowiak.
Overcoming Limiting Beliefs
A limiting belief is a thought or pattern of thoughts that get in the way of you doing what you want or your child doing what they want. A belief itself is something you hold to be true at that moment. They do change, you know. They aren’t set in stone. After all, your child may have believed in Father Christmas when they were younger but they don’t now. What’s changed? They have new information usually. Maybe they spotted you coming into their room Christmas Eve or maybe they recognised a gift they remembered seeing you buy, someone at school or a sibling may have told them or they worked it out for themselves. And guess what? This is how we overcome limiting beliefs as well. We get new information. We find out more about the thing we want to do or the thing we are worried about.
Limiting beliefs usually start with the words ‘I can’t’ and can be accompanied by hunched shoulders, that sorrowful downward look and we all know what happens next. Either you say briskly “of course you can, just get on with it” or you help them. Either way, you are confirming that they are right – they can’t do it or they are wrong. Instead, ask them what new information they need to be able to do it. Maybe they just need a bit of encouragement, a snack, a cuddle, or a reminder of how to do it. They will get far more self-belief when they achieve the task themselves alone. So when your child says ‘I can’t’ you have a number of options as to how to respond depending on the age and character of your child. Here are a few ideas
- Ask them when they will be able to do it
- Ask them what information they need to be able to do it
- Remind them how pleased they will be when they’ve done it
- Ask them if they’d like a piece of toast ( or similar) after they’ve done it
- Ask them for a score out of 10 for how great they’ll feel when they’ve done it
Then when they’ve done it, remind them how great that feels to overcome a limiting belief and that next time they feel that ‘I can’t ‘ feeling they can remind themselves that if they persevere they will do it and feel great about themselves.
‘I can’t’ is what we might call a ‘stuck state’ whereas when we add ‘yet’ we can become unstuck and achieve something that makes us feel good. Then we can say that we believed we couldn’t do that thing but in fact it turned out that we could.
Beware that you don’t step in and ‘rescue’ your child from their stuck state because that way they never get the benefit of learning how to overcome their limiting beliefs without your help and whilst that might make you feel needed , in the long run, it really doesn’t help them to be dependent on you as it can take away their own feeling of self-worth.
If you’d like to learn more about how to overcome limiting beliefs please email judy@nlpkids for a free EBook ‘Positive Parenting with NLP’.
“Be A Happier Parent with NLP” gives you the skills you need to raise a confident, secure child in a confident and secure manner. The book uses the tried, trusted and proven techniques of neuro-linguistic programming to help tackle areas in which you may feel you lack confidence as a parent, while at the same time giving you the skills to help your child be happy, fulfilled and confident him- or herself. You’ll find yourself feeling less guilty, more in control, and communicating better with your child–at the same time be able to support your child in difficult situations and help him or her grow into a well-rounded adult.
Includes: Personal insights from the author’s many years of experience of working with children Practical exercises to help you engage with the book and act on what you learn One, five and ten-minute introductions to key principles to get you started Lots of instant help with common problems and quick tips for success, based on the authors’ many years of experience Tests in the book and online to keep track of your progress Quick refreshers to help you remember the key facts.
NLP for Parents
NLP for Children (5-10yrs)
NLP for Tweens (11-14yrs)
NLP for Teens (15yrs+)
NLP for Teachers
NLP for New Mums
NLP for Weight Loss
NLP for Work
NLP for Back to Work
Secrets of the NLP Masters
Judy Bartkowiak comes from a business background where she worked with Toy companies and TV production companies helping them to understand children and their relationship with brands such as LEGO, Baby Born, Bratz, Thomas the Tank Engine, Pocoyo, Fireman Sam and many other well-known names. She runs Kids Brands Europe alongside her NLP training and coaching www.kidsresearch.co.uk and has a Facebook Kids Panel for Market Research which is done online or from her home.
She has an NLP training and coaching practice NLP Kids www.nlpfamily.com, specialising in child and parenting issues and runs Kids Brands Europe (www.kidsresearch.co.uk) as well as writing for children as JudyBee.
Judy loves playing tennis and reading as well as spending time with her family.
Wasn’t that such a wonderful guest post?
You can follow the rest of the tour here.
MEL! (The Book Moo!)
Every month I choose a new Blogger to spotlight on my blog. This blogger is usually someone who I have come to know through blogging, someone who I admire and whose blog should be getting a lot more traffic! Being a part of this means that the blogger gets their website “stickied” to the top of my blog *points to left-hand corner*, they get an interview and a few other things here and there throughout the month! It’s a way for me to share my love of them to you, and for you to find a new and amazing blog!
Got that? Good.
So, this month’s Blogger Spotlight is Mel from The Book Moo!
Why is Mel Chosen?
To be perfectly honest, I don’t remember when I first stumbled across Mel and her youtube channel and blog but the fact that I have has made me very grateful. Mel has not only participated in many of the blog tours I’ve organised but has also become someone who I enjoy reading and watching. She has a lively, fun character that is hard to miss in her posts and videos. She always posts interesting content and really makes you think on occassion too. If you’re looking for a dedicated and passionate blogger, then you should definitely check out her blog and youtube channel.
Aside from that, she is also just an incredibly lovely person. She’s friendly, welcoming, excitable and just a lot of fun. I love talking to her on twitter, instagram and facebook. She’s always raring to go with something new and exciting and isn’t afraid to dip her toe in the waters of blogging and blogging topics. It’s such a brilliant thing to see and you can just see where she gets all of her wonderful ideas from. I’m very glad that I am getting to know Mel more as I think she is a brilliant person and someone I’m lucky to have had the chance to meet, albeit online.
To see what I mean, go follow her now!
Today I am here with an exciting annoucement! Thanks to the wonderful people at Receptional, I have been given the opportunity to give away a Cat Ipad Mini Case! In my opinion, this is super cute and I would definitely be purchasing one if I had an Ipad Mini. So if you do, I would highly think about entering this giveaway!
*Please read the Ts&Cs, especially that this giveaway is open to UK and IRL participants ONLY*
Do you love cats? Do you have more cat themed things than humanly possible? Well good news, now’s your chance to own even more cool cat gear!
High street retailer, Cash Generator, the go to place buy cheap tablets in the UK, is giving you the chance to win a cute cat iPad Mini Case.
(There will only be one winner who will receive one case but the winner can choose which colour they want!)