May Wrap Up

I had a wonderfully successful May, this probably had something to do with the fact I haven’t been in college and took part in the Bout of Books read-a-thon, I have a feeling I’ll do well next month too because I’m taking part in a few challenges/read-a-thons that will encourage me to read more and I want to get through most of the review books I received below

Outdo Yourself Challenge:
(links are to the reviews)
1. Numbers
2. Specials
3. Batman: The Killing Joke
4. Channel Zero
5. Intuition
6. Intangible
7. Pandora Hearts Vol. 1
8. A Blood Seduction
Total: 24 / 36
if I hit 30 within next month I think I may aim for 50!
Coffee & Books GR Book Club BotM:
(all links below are to their Goodreads page)
The Perks of Being a Wallflower – didn’t read

Fiction Fantatics GR Book Club BoTM:
Before I Go to Sleep – read earlier this year

I became a moderator at Miscellaneous Reads on Goodreads
Books bought:
Channel Zero (preorder)

Books won:
The Next Always

eBooks bought:Hush, Hush
Magic to the Bone
Among the Living

eBook freebies:Lunara: Seth and Chloe
Rich Pickings For Ravens
Sign of the Times
Reckless Magic
Jenny Pox
Witch Song

eBooks won:
What a Boy Wants

Received for review:
Channel Zero
Dragon Age Vol. 1
House of Night Vol. 1
The Occultist
Orchids Vol. 1
Rape Girl
Beautiful Music for Ugly Children
The Immortal Rules
Pushing the Limits
Dark Kiss
The Goddess Legacy
River Run

In other interesting news I’ve finally got together my group of girls who I will be creating a YouTube with specifically for booktubing, its been a lot of work to get there but we’re finally at the stage where our videos will start being uploaded next week. I will provide a link at some point! Keep your eyes peeled.

Review: A Blood Seduction

A Blood Seduction (Vamp City, #1)A Blood Seduction by Pamela Palmer
Publish Date: 29th May 2012 (1st June – Amazon UK)
Publisher: Avon Books
Page Count: 384
Synopsis: Vampires live only for lust and pleasure in the eternal twilight of Vamp City. But the city’s magic is dying. The only person who can restore it? A beautiful woman from the mortal world…one who knows nothing of the power she wields.
Quinn Lennox is searching for a missing friend when she stumbles into a dark otherworld that only she can see—and finds herself at the mercy of Arturo Mazza, a dangerously handsome vampire whose wicked kiss will save her, enslave her, bewitch her, and betray her. 
What Arturo can’t do is forget about her—any more than Quinn can control her own feelings for him. Neither one can let desire get in the way of their mission—his to save his people, hers to save herself.

But there is no escape from desire in a city built for seduction, where passion flows hot and blood-red. Welcome to Vamp City…
Review: I received a signed advanced readers copy of this book through a giveaway on Goodreads and was dying to get my teeth sunk into at once, unfortunately life and various other books had different plans so it took longer than I thought to get to it. Whilst my love of vampires is a strong one causing me to almost instantly love anything vampire related (my Dad even tells his work friends that I don’t want a job when I grow up because I’m going to become a vampire, hey I’m a kid at heart still) but this book left me with mixed feelings.

The book started of great, I was completely drawn into Quinn’s odd and very unusual life of ever-changing-coloured-clothes and how Zack and Lily were somewhat like myself and my boyfriends which I spent a while giggling over and then read out to him, he also saw the similarities. 
At this point I wanted nothing more to adore this book with all my heart but it got little weird when Quinn and her brother fall into Vamp City in search of the Lily who has gone missing. I don’t mean your regular kind of vampires running about left, right and centre weird, what I’m referring to is after Quinn and Zack fell through they were pounced on by some vampires, a different vampire came and “saved” Quinn for some unknown reason, fed of her and raped her and ta-da! Cause that is all it takes these days to send lovely women shaky at the knees with a constant desire to be with him. Any way my point is I don’t understand the strong relationship that Arturo and Quinn end up having because he’s a vampire and constantly lives up to his vampire tendencies – lying, deceiving and betrayal. I would also like to point out this is the first book I’ve read where there has been that much detail in the sexy scenes and it was a little odd to get used – I’m pretty sure I didn’t get used to it because I’m really prude – but I wont turn down new genres just because I think I’m not suited to it. 
Even though this review so far has been a little negative I want to completely turn it on its head now because the truth is that I adored the story line, I loved Quinn’s love for her brother and how desperate she was to do anything to find him and save him, I mean escaping three times is a pretty difficult thing to do from normal kidnappers never mind those that are super strong, super fast and have a great love of feeding on your pain or fear. The storyline is what made me keep reading to the end because I had to know how it ended, I had to know if the three of them (Quinn, Lily and Zack) would end up safe and sound at home and I had to know whether Quinn was the sorceress they needed to save Vamp City! I forgot to mention that didn’t I? Basically the vampires are in need of a stronger sorcerer/sorceress to renew the magic of Vamp City to stop it from collapsing on itself, stop the sun breaking through their barrier and in turn save all their lives and the lives of the Slaves or Slavas living there too, oh and the werewolves. Yes we have werewolves too, they didn’t really play much of a part in this book and were mentioned once or twice and walked past once and had one conversation with another character but I do think this small introduction to them could be foreshadowing that they may have a larger role in one of the sequels? Due to my dire need to know whether Quinn succeeded in saving Vamp City is what capture my attention (and I had to throw it aside a little when she got all lovey dovey with Arturo because it didn’t make sense) and I am actually looking forward to reading Book 2, whether I continue beyond that lies entirely with how well Book 2 is written.
Recommend: I think this is one you need to make your own choice on, I’m so parted with my own thoughts.

3.5/5 stars
Amazon: UK | US
Pamela Palmer: GR | Website | Twitter

Wishlist Wednesday (1)

I am no longer taking part in On My Wishlist due to the fact the host hasn’t updated her blog since the start of May and I tried to contact her via twitter and haven’t heard anything, luckily I found a great replacement that is up and running! Thank you.
Wishlist Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Pen to Paper where we can share books that are on our wishlist.

This week I decided on having a Natsuo Kirino themed week, I already have one of his books and really want to get my hands on some of his others.
Real WorldReal World: In a crowded residential suburb on the outskirts of Tokyo, four teenage girls indifferently wade their way through a hot, smoggy summer and endless “cram school” sessions meant to ensure entry into good colleges. There’s Toshi, the dependable one; Terauchi, the great student; Yuzan, the sad one, grieving over the death of her mother—and trying to hide her sexual orientation from her friends; and Kirarin, the sweet one, whose late nights and reckless behavior remain a secret from those around her. When Toshi’s next-door neighbor is found brutally murdered, the girls suspect the killer is the neighbor’s son, a high school boy they nickname Worm. But when he flees, taking Toshi’s bike and cell phone with him, the four girls get caught up in a tempest of dangers—dangers they never could have even imagined—that rises from within them as well as from the world around them. Psychologically intricate and astute, dark and unflinching, Real World is a searing, eye-opening portrait of teenage life in Japan unlike any we have seen before.

OutOut: Nothing in Japanese literature prepares us for the stark, tension-filled, plot-driven realism of Natsuo Kirino’s award-winning literary mysteryOutThis mesmerizing novel tells the story of a brutal murder in the staid Tokyo suburbs, as a young mother who works the night shift making boxed lunches strangles her abusive husband and then seeks the help of her coworkers to dispose of the body and cover up her crime. The coolly intelligent Masako emerges as the plot’s ringleader, but quickly discovers that this killing is merely the beginning, as it leads to a terrifying foray into the violent underbelly of Japanese society. At once a masterpiece of literary suspense and pitch-black comedy of gender warfare, Out is also a moving evocation of the pressures and prejudices that drive women to extreme deeds, and the friendships that bolster them in the aftermath.

InIn: R is the other woman. Labelled simply with one initial, her identity in the famous 1940s novel that recounts the damage she did to her lover’s family remains shrouded in mystery. The novelist who carried out an illicit relationship with her, and then used her as material for his work, became a celebrated writer. But R never had the chance to put her side of the story. Tamaki is determined to find out who R really was. A writer herself, she is working on a book about R and begins to uncover clues about the real story behind the novel – and the great tragedy of the novelist’s life. While she throws herself into her research she’s aware that her own imperfect relationships are also up for scrutiny. Her ex-lover, Seiji, is gravely ill in hospital and her reminiscences about their long affair strike echoes with the subject of her work. In this compelling and illuminating novel, prize-winning author, Natuso Kirino explores the themes of love and death, and the significance of fiction. (Out 2013)

Bought, Borrowed & Bagged (4)

Bought, Borrowed and Bagged is a weekly event hosted by Talk Supe where you can share the books you have bought, borrowed or bagged (won) plus a recap of the previous week’s reviews, upcoming reviews and on going events.

Fallen (Fallen, #1)

Bought (paperback):

Fallen by Lauren Kate

There’s something achingly familiar about Daniel Grigori. Mysterious and aloof, he captures Luce Price’s attention from the moment she sees him on her first day at the Sword & Cross boarding school in sultry Savannah, Georgia. He’s the one bright spot in a place where cell phones are forbidden, the other students are all screw-ups, and security cameras watch every move. Even though Daniel wants nothing to do with Luce–and goes out of his way to make that very clear–she can’t let it go. Drawn to him like a moth to a flame, she has to find out what Daniel is so desperate to keep secret . . . even if it kills her.

Amazon: UK | US

Bagged (Amazon freebies):Witch SongFateful (Fateful, #1)Farsighted

Witch Song by Amber Argyle

The world is changing. Once, Witch Song controlled everything from the winds to the shifting of the seasons-but not anymore. All the Witches are gone, taken captive by a traitor. All but Brusenna. As the echo of their songs fades, the traitor grows stronger. Now she is coming for Brusenna. Her guardian has sworn to protect her, but even he can’t stop the Dark Witch. Somehow, Brusenna has to succeed where every other Witch has failed. Find the traitor. Fight her. Defeat her. Because if Brusenna doesn’t, there won’t be anything left to save.

Amazon: UK | US
Fateful by Cheri Schmidt

A huge fan of Jane Austen, Danielle hopes to find her own Mr. Darcy when she leaves Colorado to attend art school in London. Of course she knows it’s silly to wish for that, naive even. But she’s met enough males who lacked respect for women, a growing trend it seemed. And at nineteen…well…. However, on only her second night there she gets lost and is threatened by a stalker who proves to be immune to her martial arts training. Before she is completely overpowered, she is then saved by Ethan Deveroux. While Danielle does find the romance she seeks in Ethan, he’s no Mr. Darcy. Her hero is held by a spell which fractures their chance at a happy ending. During the day Ethan is closer to mortal than immortal and can date her like any other man. Yet, as the sun sets, the powerful magic of an ancient curse returns and the evil of that spell is revealed. When that magic begins, Danielle’s fairytale romance ends because Ethan Deveroux is a vampire.

Amazon: UK | US

Farsighted by Emlyn Chand

Advanced Chem? Easy. Psychic powers? Gotcha. Save the girl? Uh… Alex Kosmitoras’s life has never been easy. The only other student who will talk to him is the school bully, his parents are dead broke and insanely overprotective, and to complicate matters even more, he’s blind. Just when he thinks he’ll never have a shot at a normal life, an enticing new girl comes to their small Midwest town all the way from India. Simmi is smart, nice, and actually wants to be friends with Alex. Plus she smells like an Almond Joy bar. Sophomore year might not be so bad after all. Unfortunately, Alex is in store for another new arrival—an unexpected and often embarrassing ability to “see” the future. Try as he may, Alex is unable to ignore his visions, especially when they suggest Simmi is in mortal danger. With the help of the mysterious psychic next door and friends who come bearing gifts of their own, Alex embarks on his journey to change the future.

Amazon: UK | US

Tallis (Books of Andresium, #1)Bagged (Received for review/eCopy):
Tallis by Killian McRae

The Empire of Andresium is threatened by the corruption of the immortals, ancient beings given the gift of eternal life after the death of the last reigning empress. A prophecy speaks of their eventual downfall at the hands of one of their own, however. Tallis is known by most simply as “The Loren,” and seeks to avoid her destiny while trying herself to remain untainted by the decaying morals and indifference to the fates of men that plague her kind. As the events of the prophecy begin to unfold, Tallis finds herself conflicted between upholding her dedication to justice, and falling victim to the ramifications of following the desires of her own heart.

Amazon: UK | US

What A Boy WantsBagged (Won/eCopy):
What a Boy Wants by Nyrae Dawn

Thank you Valerie.

Courtesy of watching his mom’s relationships, Sebastian Hawkins knows what girls need to do to get a guy. He has what he considers a PHD in hooking up. When he needs extra cash for a car, Sebastian starts up an online venture as The Hook-up Doctor, to anonymously help girls land the guy of their dreams. Of course, his services don’t offer a happily-ever-after guarantee. He’s seen firsthand getting together never means staying together. And then he falls in love… With the last girl he would expect… Totally not in his game plan. Suddenly, Sebastian finds himself muddled in the game he’s always prided himself on. He can’t even pick up girls at parties anymore! Why would anyone want to be in love when it turns you into a stuttering, screwed-up, mess with really lame stalker tendencies? Stalking? Totally not his gig. But the Hook-up Doctor won’t let himself go down easily. He’s always known how to give a girl what she wants and now it’s time to figure out what a boy wants… and he definitely plans on getting it.

Amazon: UK | US

The Immortal RulesBagged (NetGalley)
The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa

In a future world, Vampires reign. Humans are blood cattle. And one girl will search for the key to save humanity. Allison Sekemoto survives in the Fringe, the outermost circle of a vampire city. By day, she and her crew scavenge for food. By night, any one of them could be eaten.  Some days, all that drives Allie is her hatred of them. The vampires who keep humans as blood cattle. Until the night Allie herself is attacked—and given the ultimate choice. Die… or become one of the monsters. Faced with her own mortality, Allie becomes what she despises most. To survive, she must learn the rules of being immortal, including the most important: go long enough without human blood, and you will go mad. Then Allie is forced to flee into the unknown, outside her city walls. There she joins a ragged band of humans who are seeking a legend—a possible cure to the disease that killed off most of humankind and created the rabids, the mindless creatures who threaten humans and vampires alike. But it isn’t easy to pass for human. Especially not around Zeke, who might see past the monster inside her. And Allie soon must decide what—and who—is worth dying for. 
Amazon: UK | US
Posted during this week:
It’s Monday! What are you reading?
Review: Intangible and Intuition
YouTube Vloggers – Volunteers Wanted (last chance today!)
Review: Channel Zero
Follow Friday
On My Wishlist

Books Read This Week:
A Blood Seduction by Pamela Palmer 

What to expect next week?
Review of A Blood Seduction
100 followers giveaway

On My Wishlist (20)

This is a weekly event, originally created by Book Chick City, and now hosted by Cosy Books, where we showcase the books which are currently top of our wishlist. Old, new or yet to be released titles are all welcome. And why keep it to books?

FlaggermusmannenFirst up I’ve selected a series by one author, that isn’t actually available in English so they’re on my wishlist for not wanting to buy but for wanting to be translated! I’ve heard a lot of great things about his work and how he’s the up and coming Stieg Larsson but I’d like to personally put his work to the text. But its a little hard to start the Harry Hole series by Jo Nesbo as book 1 and 2 haven’t been translated to English so if you want to read the English ones it called “The Oslo Trilogy” and its book 3, 4 and 5 of the Harry Hole series. I wont lie here, this really annoys me because I’d love to read the whole set, not just the middle. So for now I’ve bough book 3 and it will stay on my to be read list until they step up their book translating game. Obviously the translations below of Book 1 and 2 are not in English but I’m posting them any way in case one of you is able to translate for me, I know I could just go to Google translate but that isn’t always 100% correct.
Synopsis of Flaggermusmannnen: 
Harry Hole quitte Oslo pour enquêter en Australie sur le meurtre d’une jeune Norvégienne. Cette enquête l’amène à se documenter sur d’anciennes légendes aborigènes qui semblent avoir un lien avec l’affaire. Un deuxième meurtre survient, alors que la police tente de piéger l’assassin.
(I’m actually assuming that says Harry Hole leaves Oslo for Australia…?)

Synopsis for Kackerlackorna: En politisk skandal hotar när Norges ambassadör i Thailand hittas mördad på ett motellrum. Att statsministerns nära vän har foton på nakna småpojkar i sin portfölj får inte komma till allmän kännedom. På UD i Oslo vill man snabbt tysta ner mordet och i samråd med polisen skickas Harry Hole till Bangkok för att på ett diskret sätt hitta den skyldige. Väl på plats i den myllrande storstaden kämpar Harry för att vänja sig vid hettan, trafiken och ett liv utan alkohol.
För varje dag klarnar mystiken kring mordet allt mer det är något oroväckande som pågår i den norska kolonin i landet. Ljusskygga personer vill hindra att sanningen ska komma fram och Harry förstår att han måste vara allt annat än diplomatisk för att lösa fallet.

Bewitching Season (Leland Sisters, #1)

Following the theme of series Bewitching Season by Marissa Doyle, its a little different to my usual choices but it does sound really appealing to me.

Synopsis: In 1837 London, young daughters of viscounts pined for handsome, titled husbands, not careers. And certainly not careers in magic. At least, most of them didn’t. Shy, studious Persephone Leland would far rather devote herself to her secret magic studies than enter society and look for a suitable husband. But right as the inevitable season for “coming out” is about to begin, Persy and her twin sister discover that their governess in magic has been kidnapped as part of a plot to gain control of the soon-to-be Queen Victoria. Racing through Mayfair ballrooms and royal palaces, the sisters overcome bad millinery, shady royal spinsters, and a mysterious Irish wizard. And along the way, Persy learns that husband hunting isn’t such an odious task after all, if you can find the right quarry. 

Amazon: UK | US

Follow Friday (9)

Q. Activity! Dreamcast your current read.

I am currently making my way through A Blood Seduction by Pamela Palmer, which I won a copy of via a Goodreads giveaway. 
This actually took a lot of thought, I’ve picked Ali Larter to be Quinn.

Her half-brother is described as having ginger curly hair and I can’t pretty much only think of Seth Green for the role and he’s a geek anyway so he fits. Just take away the facial hair.
Finally for Arturo the Vampire I imagine someone who is tall, well built and slightly tanned. No idea why but that is how I see him. I also can’t really think of who would fit this role so any suggestions would be good – I think I’m struggling cause I don’t really like him, at least I’m not attracted to him like Quinn is and I certainly can’t see why she is either!

Review: Channel Zero

Channel Zero by Brian Wood
Publish Date: 12 June 2012 (paperback)

Publisher: Dark Horse

Page Count: 298
Synopsis: Special interest groups have bullied the government into passing the Clean Act, effectively killing freedom of speech and silencing the country into submission. TV and God become one and the same as America wages its own holy war against its citizens. Meet Jennie 2.5, media slut turned info-terrorist, out to save the country from itself, and restore free will and self expression. Hailed internationally as ground-breaking work in the field of sequential art, Channel Zero challenges and tests the limits, combining current events and no-future shock into a dark, paranoid, deep-ambient visual narrative. 
Review: I recieved an ARC digital copy of Channel Zero from NetGalley, which I read on my computer, I had no trouble with this but did notice it  caused the pages to be slightly pixelated meaning I couldn’t appreciate the beauty of the art as much as I normally would when reading a graphic novel, but also the smaller text was harder to read, even with these negative parts which have nothing to do with the author or illustrator I feel I should mention them because even with these faults I have still rated it highly which illustrates just how much I enjoyed it, I have also actually got it on pre-order so I can drool over the art some more and let my boyfriend read it too as he is a sucker for Dark Horse books. Now time for my actual review part.
From the very first page this hits me as a very “V for Vendatta”-esque piece of work but also a very important because it is essentially that something could happen, or even is in the process of happening. It is set in America where they have recently passed the “Clean Act” which basically means the government has complete control over the media, nothing is show or told to the populations without the governments say so, and what is told is most likely manipulated to help the people feel safe whilst outside of America pretty much anything and everything could be happening and the American citizens wouldn’t know a thing or recognise the outside world if they were to leave. I think on of the main reason I took to this book so well is because  I love the storyline, but also because the main character Jennie 2.5 is so lovable and is very much an outcast as she appears to be the only person in the whole of America who can see how wrong their lives are and is fighting to regain to control for the public and I totally dig the underdogs. Not to mention she has the most rad tattoo’s I’ve ever seen and style. What I also loved about this book was after the story had finished it included the development of the authors art and progress and development ideas that led him to this final outcome, which is something often included within graphic novels but the reason I loved it for this specific one is that you learn that Brian Wood actualyl created this for a school assignment! After Channel Zero has come to and end there is also a short story titled Jennie One which a different illustrator did the art for and I loved this section too, but again it included Becky’s development stages in how she progressed from an manga based art style to something so much more. I loved this book throughout, every page has been deeply engraved in my mind and I can not wait to get my hands on my physically copy to read it again. Hey I may even pop back and let you know what my boyfriend thought too!
Recommend: If graphic novels are your thing, totally. I loved it.

Amazon Preorder: UK | US
Brian Wood: Website | GR