A heartbroken girl. A fierce warrior. A hero in the making.
Sixteen years ago the Kingdom of Winter was conquered and its citizens enslaved, leaving them without magic or a monarch. Now, the Winterians’ only hope for freedom is the eight survivors who managed to escape, and who have been waiting for the opportunity to steal back Winter’s magic and rebuild the kingdom ever since.
Orphaned as an infant during Winter’s defeat, Meira has lived her whole life as a refugee, raised by the Winterians’ general, Sir. Training to be a warrior—and desperately in love with her best friend, and future king, Mather — she would do anything to help her kingdom rise to power again.
So when scouts discover the location of the ancient locket that can restore Winter’s magic, Meira decides to go after it herself. Finally, she’s scaling towers, fighting enemy soldiers, and serving her kingdom just as she’s always dreamed she would. But the mission doesn’t go as planned, and Meira soon finds herself thrust into a world of evil magic and dangerous politics – and ultimately comes to realize that her destiny is not, never has been, her own.
I don’t remember when I heard about this book bit I do remember being incredibly excited about it. And then all the raving reviews appeared and I got even more intrigued about it. Thus, when I finally wrapped my hands around it, I had to start it straight away. Now that I’ve finished it, I am so glad that I read it as it is a book that I truly loved. In fact, it is a book that gave me a book hangover as I keep wanting to return to the world and read more about what will happen. Therefore, I am excited to hear there will be a sequel. Lord knows the wait will be difficult but I’m sure I’ll manage it.
I loved the concept of this book. In this world there are eight kingdoms all with a ruler (four male, four female). Four of the kingdoms are called Rhythm kingdoms, the other four are Season kingdoms. Those in the Season kingdoms have the traits of their kingdom (i.e. Winterians have white hair and feel most comfortable and relaxed in Winter). Those in the Rhythms also have their own traits, such as artistic. It is such an interesting world that Sara Raasch has created and I really just want to return. I also found the plot to be really compelling. I was captivated by how the events occurred and I constantly wanted to know what would happen next. It was quite difficult to put the book down and carry on with life knowing that the book was just waiting for me.
I’m starting to think I feel this about every book I read but my favourite character in the book was the protagonist; Meira. At the beginning of the book she read as a very naive character, but as the story progressed, she definitely came into her own. She was strong, caring, protective, fierce and loyal and I just loved everything about her. I admired watching her journey and I really want to read more about her. I also loved Mather. He was very intense and interesting but I have to admit that when Theron was introduced, I had to re-think my thoughts on Mather. But aside from these, my second favourite character was Neeva. You don’t get to see a lot of her so I’m really hoping she crops up in the next book. All of the characters in the book were well thought out and great to read about.
While so far my review reads like this book was glorious and fantastic, there were a few issues that I had with the book. As such some of the writing style irked on me. There were quite a few repetitions of things that I didn’t think were necessary and it bugged me but, fortunately, the story was strong enough to skim over it. This wasn’t the only issue for me but I don’t want this review to get too negative but I will say that despite the problems, I still really enjoyed this story, would read it again and definitely cannot wait to get my hands on the sequel. All in all this book is one that surprised me in the best way and reminded me why I love reading so much. It is one that is full of interesting things, amazing characters, and will make it very difficult for you to put the book down.
** 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. **
I don’t know who first thought watching lots of films in one go would be a good idea or how it became a global phenomenon but today I am here, thankful for them, as I discuss my thoughts on movie marathons.
The Joy of Lot’s Together
I have always enjoyed watching movies at home. But one of my favourite things to do is to dedicate more than just a couple of hours by watching lots of movies back to back. There’s just something so fun about sitting down with friends and just watching lots of films together or sitting alone and re-watching films that you love. It can be the perfect way to wile a way a day or two.
This is also the perfect way to watch and entire collection of films together. Like before watching Mockingjay in the cinema, I was able to watch the first two back-to-back with a friend. The same can be down with other similar films like LOTR, Back to the Future, Die Hard, Fast & Furious, Harry Potter, or even just similar films like all the Marvel Comic Book films!
Pausing For Breaks
Unlike in the cinema, the best part about a movie marathon is the possibily to pause the films for toilet breaks and food breaks – essential things for movie marathons!
All the Discussions
There is also room to talk when watching in the comfort of your own home. Sometimes even in the middle of the films, sometimes between films. It certainly helps to make the entire experience easier to bond over. It’s essentially a lot more social than heading to the cinema!
Sharing Your Favourites
Ultimately, movie marathons are perfect for sharing your favourite films with your friends. If there’s four of you, you can all bring one film, or two wach if there’s just two, and so on. It allows you the chance to see if they love the films too and is much better than just letting them borrow your DVD. I think this is a great way to share movies with others.
So these are my thoughts. Essentially I always enjoy a good marathon – and even have a Christmas one planned soon! But what about you? Do you love them, never tried them or are they just not your thing? Let me know in the comments!
Today I am here to introduce you to my friend Melissa Brown. She’s currently trying to fund her very first novel and she needs your help! Find out more info below in her wonderful guest post!
I am a creative writing teacher seeking public support to crowd fund my YA novel, Becoming Death. Using Kickstarter, I have until December 17th to convince friends, family and members of the public to raise £1,250 to fund production of my debut novel. The primary costs of the campaign are cover design, professional editing and printing.
Becoming Death is a tale of family secrets, falling in love and questioning your destiny, told from the perspective of a supernatural protagonist. When Madison Clark turns eighteen, she is ushered into the secretive family business. Little does she know, her family are Grim Reapers, custodians of souls on their journey to the beyond. Will she be able to carry out her new duties when she finds out that her next victim is her best friend?
Becoming Death was born as a National Novel Writing Month (Nanowrimo), project in 2014. For the last five years, I have led this online challenge that encourages entrants to write a 50,000 word novel in November for the Norfolk, UK region. Through Nanowrimo, I have helped other authors successfully publish work and I feel that now is my turn. I have been successfully writing and posting my fan fiction under the name lonegungal17 for years; but writing and self-publishing my own book is a new challenge.
I have always been interested in the supernatural but I wanted a new take on it. I started researching different types of creatures and one that stood out to me was the Grim Reaper. After researching the Grim Reaper, I found this creature was very rarely portrayed as female, thus my main character was born. Madison is a typical teenage fangirl: she writes fanfiction about her OTP (one true pairing), is addicted to her favourite comic book series and doesn’t really know how to be an adult yet.
The book sets up a new back story of how Grim Reapers might function in the modern world, past traditions like wearing robes and carrying scythes are reserved for ceremonies. Instead they attend evening classes to learn how to use their powers, use an app to track their victims and scroll through social media to learn more about them
It was the challenge of completing a project within a tight timescale that helped me decide that crowdfunding was the right option for me, and I believe crowdfunding offers an exciting opportunity for up-and-coming novelists to break into the market. I welcome donations of any amount. Rewards for donating include advance copies of my book, bespoke jewellery, writing courses, writing advice sessions, and opportunities to have a character created in your appearance or with your name. For more information, I can be contacted at Twitter at @MRBrown_author.
You can find more information about my book here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/melissabrownauthor/becoming-death-a-ya-novel
Sound like something you’d want to read and back? Please do!
Ted doesn’t think of herself as glamorous. But her gorgeous sister Ava is. So when it’s Ted who spotted by a model agency, at the same time that Ava is diagnosed with cancer, things have clearly gone very wrong. Ted isn’t interested in modelling but Ava wants her to give it a try. Just how far will Ted go to please her sister? And what sacrifices will she have to make?
When I first read the synopsis of this book I thought that it sounded very similar to Geek Girl by Holly Smale. However, similar premises is the end of all comparisons to that book as The Look is very, very different. And is just as good in it’s own unique and serious way. This was my second Sophia Bennett book and while I didn’t love it as much as You Don’t Know Me, I still really enjoyed it and it has made me want to read more books by her.
There Is More
One thing that Sophia Bennett is good at, is writing novels centering around important, sensitive topics and making sure her characters are at the forefront of the novel. I especially love this about her books andd feel that this worked well with The Look. This book looks at the modelling industry, cancer, and the struggles of simply being a teenager in the recession. And it did it all in ann entertaining, albeit emotional, way. Sophia manages to touch on these topics sensitively and I just couldn’t help but devour this book.
As mentioned above, Sophia is very good with characters by creating character-driven plots and she definitely did that in this book. I instantly connected with Ted. I found her to be a relatable character and I really enjoyed following her on her journey in this book. She is caring, sensitive, loyal, and every bit as naive as a fifteen year old should be. But, also, the minor characters are incredibly well-written too. Like Ava and Jesse, and I loved that you were able to see their journey’s too. And Nick too, obviously!
Than You Know
While I may not have enjoyed this as much as You Don’t Know Me, I still thoroughly enjoyed this book. Yet again Sophia has written a book that is emotionally moving, holds fascinating and lovable characters, and brings topics to light in a sensitive way. It is an entertaining read that you won’t want to put down and will be sad to finish. I can definitely see myself re-reading this in the future and reading more from Sophia Bennett soon!
Weekly Highlights is a new feature here at A Daydreamer’s Thoughts and will be a post highlighting things that happened on and off the blog. It is inspired by The Story Sirens In My Mailbox, Books, Biscuit and Tea’s Showcase Sunday, Kimba Caffeinated’s Sunday Post, and the British Letterbox Love.
In the feature I won’t mention everything I received, nor every post I wrote during the week but will simply feature a selection of things I wish to spotlight a second time around.
So I’ve missed a couple of these so once again, this is going to be highlighting a few weeks in one post.
I posted TWO reviews;
You Don’t Know Me by Sophia Bennett (FOUR HEARTS)
We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler (FOUR HEARTS)
I also posted one top ten tuesday;
Sequels I Can’t Wait For
And I wrote a post about forgetting, and how frustrating it can be when it comes to books and reading. Find out what I mean and add your own thoughts, here.
And, in case you missed it, the month changed so I did a November Monthly Wrap-Up.
I haven’t posted a video in MONTHS. Because I’ve been far too busy but I posted a video on Friday! You can watch it here.
In other news, I have filmed one more video which just needs to be edited plus I have plans to film some more today so *fingers crossed* I’ll be vlogging more regulary again soon! Yay!
Around the Blogosphere
This week Lucy wrote a post with her “Christmas Wish List”, detailing all the things she wishes she could have but aren’t attainable for whatever reason. It’s really fun. Read what she’s put here.
Michelle has written about the books she would love to find under the Christmas tree this year, find out what they are here.
Jamie has done her annual bookish survey for everyone to fill out as and when they want to. You can find it here. I will definitely be doing this in the next few weeks!
And throughout this month Jim is hosting an #indieadvent event on his blog with a different post every day for 24 days! You should definitely check it out by clicking here and having a little stroll!
And this is where I come off as the crazy book lady!
Snow Like Ashes by Sarah Raasch; I got this on Friday and I’ve already started reading it. I have been waiting for it ever since I heard about it! I think it’s going to be a very interesting read indeed. Thank you to Harper360 for this review copy!
A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray; I’m very intrigued by this one! It’ll be my first Claudia Gray and it just sounds so different and interesting. Thank you again to Harper360 for this one.
The Oyster Catcher by Jo Thomas; I’ve been in a bit of an adult kick lately and this one really caught my eye. Definitely looking forward to seeing if it’s a good one or not! Thank you to Headline for this review copy.
The Shock of the Fall by Nathan Filer; Everyone has been talking about this one and it’s won or been nominated for a lot of awards this year and so when I saw it was on offer, I decided that I’d give it a try and see what happens!
It Must Have Been The Mistletoe by Judy Astley; It’s Christmas and I’m in the mood to read Christmas stories so when I saw this book on offer, I thought I why not? I’ve heard good things about this book and Judy Astley so I hope it’s as good as I hope!
The House We Grew Up In by Lisa Jewell; Another one bought because I’m in a bit of an adult kick lately. It sounds like the perfect book for me so I’m looking forward to seeing if I enjoy it!
The Rosie Project by Graeme Simison; This book had a HUGE reservation list at the library. Everyone thinks it’s a really funny story and everyone was dying to get their hands on the second book which just came out. So I decided to buy it and see what all the fuss is about!
Feed by Mira Grant; I have actually been wanting to read this one for years but never got around to doing so. When I saw we’d bought in a new copy of it for the library, I couldn’t help myself and took it out for borrowing! Looking forward to seeing what i think.
High & Dry by Sarah Skilton; This was a random purchase. Saw it on the shelf, thought it looked interesting and fell in love with the odd synopsis and the fact it had a male protagonist so I bought it. It was also during a 20% offer at Foyles so it was even better!
Funny Girl by Nick Hornby; I have only read one other Nick Hornby but I really liked it so when I heard about his newest book, I put my name on the reservation list at the library. Definitely looking forward to giving this book a go.
Mayhem by Sarah Pinborough; I have never read anything by Sarah Pinborough before but have heard a lot of people talking about her lately and so when I saw this on a crazily great deal in The Works last week, I had to buy it. Intrigued to see what she’s like!
Lost Dogs and Lonely Hearts by Lucy Dillon; Another book bought because of my adult kick. I’m very intrigued to see what this one is like!
Frozen Charlotte by Alex Bell; I saw this book in the bookstore and I was instantly attracted to it. I love horror stories and thought this sounded like the perfect kind of creepy. But I put it down to buy other books instead. When I saw it on Netgalley a few days later, I had to request. I cannot wait to read this. Thank you to Stripes for this copy.
All The Bright Places by Jessica Niven; I saw this and I desperately wanted to read it. So very much looking forward to diving into this. Especially as I’ve already heard some good things about it! Thank you to Random House for the Netgalley copy!
The Here and Now by Ann Brashares; I heard “author of sisterhood of travelling pants” and stopped reading the synopsis and clicked “request”. I love those books and I’m really excited to see what this book is about. Also, the cover is gorgeous. Thanks to Hachette Children’s for this Netgalley book!
One Step Closer To You by Alice Peterson; Another one for my adult kick (are you seeing a pattern, getting a hint of what the new year may bring?). This one sounded perfect for me. I am definitely intrigued and look forward to seeing what this one is really all about.
SEE. Crazy books lady!
I read a few books at a time so I have decided that I want to showcase them a little on the blog and so from now on I thought I would tell you all what I’m currently reading (on Saturday/Sunday!)
This week I am currently reading;
And there you have it, my Weekly Highlights!
What Did You Get This Week? What Cool Blog Posts Did You Stumble Upon? What Are You Reading This Week?
Meet the Cooke family. Our narrator is Rosemary Cooke. As a child, she never stopped talking; as a young woman, she has wrapped herself in silence: the silence of intentional forgetting, of protective cover. Something happened, something so awful she has buried it in the recesses of her mind.
Now her adored older brother is a fugitive, wanted by the FBI for domestic terrorism. And her once lively mother is a shell of her former self, her clever and imperious father now a distant, brooding man.
And Fern, Rosemary’s beloved sister, her accomplice in all their childhood mischief? Fern’s is a fate the family, in all their innocence, could never have imagined.
I only heard about this book through the Man Booker Prize but I was completely pulled in by the cover and blurb and thus decided that I wanted to read it. This is a decision I’m glad I made as I really enjoyed this book. While it took me a long time to get through and was a little literary for me in some places, I found myself hooked to the story, wanting to know so much more. It was a truly fascinating read that took me by surprise in the best possible way.
What made this book so interesting and different was that it didn’t have a normal linear structure. The story starts at the end, goes to the middle then the beginning and back to the end. While that sounds confusing, in this book, it really worked. I loved how this story was told. It was captivating and was beautifully unpredictable. Of course, what made this work so well was the amazing plot. There was so much going on in this story. It was moving, and just so different from anything I’ve read. It’s hard to explain without ruining things, so really you should just read it.
You Must Try
It took me a bit of a while to warm to the main protagonist in this story. To me she seemed a bit odd at the start but I quickly changed my mind and found Rosemary to be an interesting and lovely character that I wanted to read more about. She was so strong, caring and loving but also just a little bit lost. It was perfect for this book. Karen Joy Fowler wroter her incredibly well, as well as all the other side characters. It is hard not to feel emotionally attached to many of the characters in this book as they are all so lovable!
To Fix Them
This is a book that was completely different to what I expected, which in turn just made it that much more enjoyable to read. We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves is a heart-warming, emotional rollarcoaster of a book that will definitely make you think. It is a story of love, finding yourself, and how we percieve the world. It is a truly marvellous novel that I found compelling and would recommend in a heartbeat. It may have had a few flaws but these were nothing in light of all the good pouring out of the pages. Read it.
So I ummed and ahhed about whether or not to start doing monthly wrap-ups on the blog but have eventually decided that in an effort to keep my blog more organised, to keep on top of challenges and to do a nice re-cap of the month for you all, that I would do them :-). Therefore, this post will be set out like my weekly highlights post, split into headings in an attempt to keep everything organised easily :D
I’m sure I say this every month but I’m really stumped at the fact it is December already. The years really do fly by, don’t they?
This month was crazy busy for me! I attempted to do NaNoWriMo and failed to reach 50K BUT I did manage almost 12K which is better than nothing!
I had a lot of work on as well, I’m now trying to juggle three jobs and a social life which is different.
Book event wise, I got to meet Jacqueline Wilson which was awesome and amazing! I’ve been reading her books for over ten years now so it was just so lovely to finally meet her.
And cinema-wise, I’ve definitely kept busy but I would say Mockingjay was a favourite!
In the midst of my busy month I managed to read seven and a half books which I’m rather proud of. I would, obviously, like to have read more but I’ll take what I can get!
I read this book while I was ill this month and it was the perfect book to escape with. While it took me a while to read – for reasons mentioned above – it was one that I ultimately enjoyed from start to finish. It was heart-warming, had a lovely plot and centered around a protagonist I couldn’t help but love. It was, essentially, a coming-of-age story that I melted into and a book I would readily recommend to others. It was also about food which all sounded really delicious and just made the book have that little extra spark but what I really enjoyed about this book was the way that it had so many different subplots surrounding it all. I loved all of the characters, the journey they all took, and the way it was all just written so well. It is definitely a book that you should try if you like contemporary adult books. Or even if you like YA but want something a little more as the main protagonist is in her early twenties and just starting her life living alone in NYC. It really is a lovely little read.
So I definitely had a better reading month than October but I still really want to read a five star book before the end of the year!
It’s Christmas! And the last month of the year! So these are a few of the books I REALLY want to read before 2014 ends…