Tag Archives: feminist

Run in the Blood by AE Ross. Review

Thank you to Netgalley, AE Ross and the publisher for my ARC of Run in the Blood.

Run in the Blood is the debut novel from author AE Ross. A slick fantasy novel with awesome characters who you can’t help but absolutely love!

Aela Crane has been raised a Corsair, a brutal, bloodthirsty pirate and she wouldn’t want life any other way. Sailing the high seas in search of fights, gold and glory, and popping back to port for a fumble with a sweet girl every now and again. What other life could she possibly want? As long as she hides the old magic inside her, she’ll be just fine.

Del is a quiet, thoughtful soldier who seems to know much more about Aela’s powers than she does and he’s hiding secrets of his own.

Brynne is a crofter’s daughter trying to learn how to be a princess when she is lifted to lofty heights thanks to a deal her now Dead father made on her behalf.

There’s everything you could possibly want from a great fantasy novel, pirates, magical creatures, politics, secrets among royalty and plenty of ‘omg’ surprise moments. Not to mention buckets of fun along the way. A truly swashbuckling, adventurous novel that doesn’t play by the normal rules. No tropes here guys!


Anything You Do Say by Gillian McAllister. Review

Thank you to Netgalley, the publisher and Gillian McAllister for my review copy of Anything You Do Say.

I have never seen the film Sliding Doors but if you have, this book follows a similar concept in that it is told in the form of two scenarios. Like two stories running concurrently, based on a decision made.

Olivia and Laura are out for their regular Friday night drinks when a man begins to harass Olivia. She’d agreed to take a selfie with him, let him buy her a drink but then he gets pushy, starts touching her inappropriately, getting in her personal space etc. A moment we’ve all experienced, not just women but men too, that pushy guy or girl who’s maybe a bit worse for wear but whose behaviour is inexcusable.

Feeling uncomfortable, the two women leave the bar and set off home in separate directions. Halfway to the tube station, Olivia gets the sense that someone is following her, she tries to call her husband but the signal goes, spotting the guy from the bar’s bright red trainees coming up alongside her, Olivia panics, turning around, she shoved her would be attacker away from her as hard as possible, and he falls down the concrete stairs to the canal side and doesn’t move.

Now Olivia is faced with a decision. Does she call 999 save the man’s life and face the consequences of what she has done? Or does she walk away, pretend it hasn’t happened and live with the guilt?

The rest of the novel tells the story from two angles, Reveal and Conceal. One sees Olivia calling 999, being arrested and facing the consequences of her actions, the other sees her leaving him there, and trying to live with herself and cover up the crime afterwards.

It was a really interesting way to read a novel. The whole way through I found myself questioning, not only my own morals and beliefs, I.e what would I do in that situation, but also which one was true and which one had the worse consequences? Yes, admitting to it means you’re admitting to a crime which may end in a prison sentence, but concealing it means you’ve got to face your friends and family knowing what you’ve done and living with that. Which is worse?

The story really pulls you along and in all honesty I was surprised how much I identified with Olivia. Like literally, other than the pushing the man down the stairs thing, me and her could be the same person. Her inability to commit to anything, her mad schemes, her need to prove herself, her intelligence but procrastination letting her down. Olivia is like my soul mate. I think that really gave me such a strong emotional connection with her because Sometimes it felt like the story was about me. It was a weird feeling. But it really allowed me to get lost in the story.

One of my favourite novels from this year. Excellent.

November Wrap Up 2017

It’s a big one this month! I had a 2 week break in Tenerife and we literally stayed in a villa in the middle of nowhere, so with nothing else to do, I had no choice but to read, read, read!

Ive read 32 books this month, totalling 10,979 Pages.

Midnight Crossroad, Day Shift and Night Shift by Charlaine Harris




Into the Water by Paula Hawkins


Pieces of You by Ella Harper


Peggy and Me by Miranda Hart

Tess of the D’Ubervilles by Thomas Hardy


Into the Thinnest of Air by Simon R Green


The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge


The Cruel Prince by Holly Black


The Girl You Lost and The Girl With No Past by Kathryn Croft



The Hate You Give by Angie Thomas


The Girls by Emma Cline


Truth or Dare by Non Pratt


A Very British Christmas by Rhodri Marsden

The Blade Itself by Joe Abercrombie


Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me and Why Not Me? By Mindy Kaling

See What I Have Done by Sarah Schmidt


Faking Friends by Jane Fallon


Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them the illustrated edition by JK Rowling

Look For Me by Lisa Gardner


A Journey Through The History of Magic by The British Library


The Sacrifice Box by Martin Stewart


A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms by George RR Martin


Across the Wall by Garth Nix

Lips Touch, Three Times by Laini Taylor


Contagion by Teri Terry


The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher

American Gods by Neil Gaiman


Cold Christmas by Alastair Gunn


The Book of Life by Deborah Harkness. Review

The Book of Life is the third and final book in Deborah Harkness’ All Souls Trilogy. Pleased be warned going forward that while there are no spoilers for The Book of Life here, there will be some from the first two books; A Discovery of Witches and Shadow of Night.

After returning from their adventures in the 16th century, Matthew and Diana are immediately roped into a new drama. Not only is Diana now a powerful weaver (a witch who can create her own spells), she is also pregnant with twins and against all odds, Matthew is the father. Some people (mostly their friends and family) are overjoyed by this news, but others like their old adversaries Gebert and Peter Knox are really not! Meanwhile, there’s some new and old faces arriving on the scene, and more than a few surprises in store.

The Book of Life really got me back into the story of Diana and Matthew, I loved that it gave so many answers, reintroduced some much loved characters and also a bond worthy villain. It really reached the series for me and I was sad when it ended!!

A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness. Review 

I think I may have just found my new favourite book series. Imagine, for a moment that Twilight meets Outlander and you’ve got yourself A Discovery of Witches. 

What a fantastic start to a series. Diana is a historian at Oxford University (yes this is a fantasy book about adults, immediate brownie points) and she is also a witch. But she doesn’t want to be a witch or to use her magic to gain any headway in her chosen field, so she’s spent her whole life avoiding using magic. That is until magic inadvertently finds her. Diana uncovers a magical book in the course of her studies and despite not wanting anything to do with it herself, it calls up all kinds of creatures from the depths and Diana’s life is suddenly at risk. Enter Matthew the gorgeous, if ancient and charismatic vampire and an adventure begins. 

First off, I love that this book is as aforementioned about adults. I love a YA novel as much as the next person but there’s just something about a magical story involving grownups instead of teenagers. For one there’s just something more mature about the writing style and storyline. I.e we don’t have to wait 5 Books for the main characters to get intimate while the Books audience grows up. 

Secondly, the storyline is just soooo good! Not only do we have Witches, vampires and Daemons, we’ve also got history, science, alchemy, libraries, and the knights Templar thrown in there as well. It was unputdownable! I can’t wait to start Book 2 straight away! 

Surprise Me by Sophie Kinsella. Review 

Thank you to Netgalley, Random House Publishing and Sophie Kinsella for my ARC of Surprise Me. I’m always grateful for any ARCs which come my way but particularly so when it’s an author that I already love. I’ve been a huge fan of Sophie’s books since I first read Confessions of a Shopaholic and I love her Madeleine Wickham books too. Surprise Me was just as much a treat as her other books, funny, witty, honest and in places bittersweet. 

Sylvie and Dan have been together for 10 years, they have 2 beautiful daughters and jobs they enjoy, they’re so close they finish each other’s sentences and know exactly what the other one is thinking. But then a routine visit to the doctors gives them a shock. With the record of good health in their families they are likely to live for another 68 years. Suddenly, the idea of being married for another 68 years doesn’t seem that appealing and for the first time in their lives together Sylvie and dan start having ‘problems.’ 

The story that follows is equal parts funny and sad as in order to keep their marriage alive Sylvie and Dan try to surprise each other with several failed attempts! If it could go wrong, then it somehow does. 

I loved the characters in the book and the battle Sylvie has with herself as she tries to find herself among the perceptions other people have of her. The storyline is sad in places and despite quite a big build up I didn’t figure out what was about to go wrong. I really enjoyed Surprise Me and look forward to its release! 

Forest of a Thousand Lanterns by Julie C Dao 

Thank you to Netgalley, the publisher and Julie C Dao for my copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review. 

Forest of a Thousand Lanterns is the debut novel from Julie C Dao and the first in the series Rise of the Empress. There is a rise in Eastern Asian fantasy fiction at the moment but I think it’s safe to say that with this debut Julie C Dao is leading the pack. Forest of a Thousand Lanterns is one of the most gripping, engaging and heart stopping novels I have read across any genre. 

The main character Xifeng is the perfect anti heroine. Like many others I become tired of storylines involving the little poor girl who gets noticed by the handsome prince and finds herself elevated and rescued. Xifeng is the opposite, she uses her beauty to become brutal, unrelenting and fearless as she scratches her way to the top and what she views as her destiny, not caring who she steps on, on the way up. She fully embraces the darkness inside her with barely any hesitation. She knows what she wants and doesn’t really care how she gets it. 

The writing is absolutely lush, and the story itself makes this novel impossible to put down. There’s a small part of you that cries out for Xifeng to find redemption but a larger part, is secretly relishing her ruthless personality. Woven in with myth, magic, legend, God’s and monsters, what’s not to like? 

Xifeng is a poor young girl, schooled by her aunt Guma who does nothing but whip and abuse her and force her towards what she sees as Xifeng’s Destiny to become Empress of all Feng Lu. But there is something else influencing Xifeng. A darkness inside her which her aunt cannot protect her from, a darkness that sees Xifeng’s destiny as it’s own. Xifeng travels to the Imperial City, determined to achieve great things, no matter what the cost. 

I literally cannot wait for the second instalment in what is promising to be a fantastic new series!