Sunday 30 September 2012

Review: Girl of Nightmares

It’s been months since the ghost of Anna Korlov opened a door to Hell in her basement and disappeared into it, but ghost-hunter Cas Lowood can’t move on.

His friends remind him that Anna sacrificed herself so that Cas could live—not walk around half dead. He knows they’re right, but in Cas’s eyes, no living girl he meets can compare to the dead girl he fell in love with.

Now he’s seeing Anna everywhere: sometimes when he’s asleep and sometimes in waking nightmares. But something is very wrong... these aren’t just daydreams. Anna seems tortured, torn apart in new and ever more gruesome ways every time she appears.

Cas doesn’t know what happened to Anna when she disappeared into Hell, but he knows she doesn’t deserve whatever is happening to her now. Anna saved Cas more than once, and it’s time for him to return the favor.

Title: Girl of Nightmares (Anna ~ Book 2)
Author: Kendare Blake
Publication Date: August 7 2012
Publisher: Tor Teen
ISBN: 0765328666
Length: 334 Pages
Add it to your TBR PileGoodreads
Buy ItAmazon US / Amazon UK

Source: Purchased (Kindle Edition)
Cover Love: Beautiful!  Anna looks stunning around all the red.
Point of View: 1st person, following Cas

My Rating: 4 Stars

There is absolutely no way of writing any kind of review for this book without giving away spoilers from the first book in the series, Anna Dressed in Blood.  Even reading the synopsis gives away some of the first book so please read this review with the WARNING that you should read Anna Dressed in Blood first.

This book was bitter sweet for me.  I knew from the start that Anna was not going to be playing as large a roll in this book, at least not in the same capacity as before.

Very little time has passed since the last book ended.  We find Cas trying to move on from Anna but having a hard time forgetting her.  It is more than just the feelings he has for her.  He knows she is not where she is supposed to be.  She is appearing to him in dreams and even in broad daylight, but she just dies over and over in front of him in horrible ways.  He is miserable and knows he has to find where she is and how to get her out, the only problem is that nobody seems to know how to do this.  Or at least nobody is willing to give him answers.

The trio are still together, Cas, Thomas and Carmel.  The characters are really what make this book.  They are so well written and you care about what happens to them.  Cas is still as funny as ever, he really makes me laugh.

There is plenty of gore and spine-chilling moments!  I think because I had just read the first Anna I knew a bit more of what to expect so I was still spooked but I didn't find myself as freaked out.  Don't get me wrong there are some major spooky parts and there is one part where I really had to take a minute.  It got so crazy but a good kind of crazy.

The ending.  What can I say about the ending?  I feel I must put my feelings in a spoiler tag, please only read on if you dare...

Spoiler Alert :

NOOOOOOOOOO!!! Really? *sigh*

I mean I had no idea what I expected. When you really think about it how would a relationship work between Cas and Anna? But this doesn't mean I can't be upset, right? I am a happy ending kinda girl. I like the smiles and rainbows.

I am not ashamed to say I cried. When I think about it though I know they will both end up being happy. I like the idea that Blake puts out there... that where we go in the end is our happy ending. Anna was going back to her Victorian house, Cas was there on the porch calling her to go for a walk in her happy ending. Oh no, the tears are going to start again.
I have read other reviews that have said there are no future books in the series planned.  With the ending the way it is I wouldn't see how there could be so this is probably a good thing.  I am sad that there will be no more Cas, Thomas and Carmel though.  I will miss them.

“She crossed over death to call me. I crossed through Hell to find her.”

Book Blogger Spotlight: Bookworm in Love

Bookworm in Love

When and why did you become a book blogger?

I started my blog in April 2012, but truly started blogging in May, after I read Obsidian. I felt so guilty for loving it so much and not reviewing it, because Katy (from Obsidian) was a book blogger, and she was so awesome, and I felt all lame about my blog because of her, so I decided to get my blog really up and running.

How did you come up with the name of your blog?

My mom actually came up with 'Bookworm in Love.' I had originally thought of 'My Book Crush,' but that was already taken on Blogger!

What is your favorite thing about blogging?

I love reviewing books, because it's so much more me than any meme I do, and it spreads my general love of all things bookish. I just love telling people my opinions on the books I read!

What do you find the hardest about blogging?

I'm really lame about following through on comments and such, because I am super busy and barely have time to write posts and reviews during the week, let alone comment on other people's blogs and follow and do things for the nice people who comment on my blog.

Does your blog participate in any weekly features and if so which is your favorite?

I participate in A LOT of weekly features, just because I feel like I want to have posts every day. My favorite is the 'Top Ten Tuesday' from The Broke and the Bookish, because I can put a ton of personal spin on it.

What has been your favorite moment since you became a book blogger? Which review, interview or giveaway have you been most proud of?

Favorite moment since becoming a blogger. Hmmmm. Well I think I was the most excited about book blogging when I got my first NetGalley approval, because that kind of meant, to me, that this whole blogging thing was worthwhile. I got The Lost Prince, and I had wanted it so badly, it just made me feel super legitimate and like I finally had a little bit of credibility. My favorite review that I have written was for Daughter of Smoke and Bone, because I feel like it captures what I want to portray as a reviewer, and I just completely, utterly loved that book :)

What kind of genres do you enjoy reading and reviewing the most?

YA Paranormal Romance. I review all kinds of YA, though, and love it!

What is your favorite individual book or series? What makes you love it so much?

My favorite book right now has got to be The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer. I'm not sure why I loved it so much, because I know a lot of people thought it was way too weird and confusing, but I just thought it was so well written and you can't help but love Noah Shaw. He's British! I mean, I totally love Mara, too, but the guy character is always my favorite! The two of them were hilarious together, too.

Who is your favorite fictional male character, why and from what book or series are they from?

Much as I love Noah, I gotta say Daemon from the Lux series for this one! He's so sarcastic and caring, all at the same time, and that totally makes it for me in a guy. I love his banter with Katy, and the way he takes care of her (I mean, if you've read Onyx, how can you not love him after that Thanksgiving scene!?). He's just all around amazing and gorgeous and fantastic. Definitely my favorite male character in a really long time.

Who is your favorite fictional female character, why and from what book or series are they from?

Clary from The Mortal Instruments all the way. She's hilariously sarcastic and funny and adorable, and she is so brave. I totally wanted to be her when I was like 13 and had first read City of Bones, because she's just so cool. Plus, she gets Jace, who is a close 3rd to Daemon and Noah in my book!

Who are your favorite three authors and why?

Jennifer Armentrout is always at the top of my list, because she's just really fantastic about interacting with her readers and always spreads a lot of blogger love, and I totally love her for that. (She's also kind of the author of the Lux series, so Daemon came from her brain, and that's plenty to make her my top favorite).

Michelle Hodkin, author of The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, because she's really funny and fantastic and I totally love reading her blog. She also wrote my current favorite book, so I like her a lot ;)

Cassandra Clare, because she's awesome and the author of The Mortal Instruments and The Infernal Devices and I LOVE ALL HER BOOKS. All of them. I own all of her books, too, so I would love to meet her and get them all signed!

If you could turn one book or series into films, what would you pick and who would you cast as the main characters?

I would love to see The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer as a movie, but I totally don't know actors and actresses (I read more than I watch TV and movies)!!

What are you reading right now?

I am currently reading The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater and Glow by Amy Kathleen Ryan.

Paper books or ebooks?

Paper books

Which would be your favorite place to read? Curled up on a cold day in front of a fireplace, in front of a window on a lovely overcast rainy day or outside on a hammock on a warm summer’s day?

In front of the fire place- I get so ADD outside and can't read!

Milk chocolate, white chocolate or dark chocolate?

Dark chocolate

Coffee or hot tea?


Would you like to give any other details about yourself? How can others find you around the web? Such as Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, etc...


Friday 28 September 2012

Review: Anna Dressed in Blood

Cas Lowood has inherited an unusual vocation: He kills the dead.

So did his father before him, until his gruesome murder by a ghost he sought to kill. Now, armed with his father’s mysterious and deadly athame, Cas travels the country with his kitchen-witch mother and their spirit-sniffing cat. Together they follow legends and local lore, trying to keep up with the murderous dead—keeping pesky things like the future and friends at bay.

When they arrive in a new town in search of a ghost the locals call Anna Dressed in Blood, Cas doesn’t expect anything outside of the ordinary: move, hunt, kill. What he finds instead is a girl entangled in curses and rage, a ghost like he’s never faced before. She still wears the dress she wore on the day of her brutal murder in 1958: once white, but now stained red and dripping blood. Since her death, Anna has killed any and every person who has dared to step into the deserted Victorian she used to call home.

And she, for whatever reason, spares his life.

Title: Anna Dressed in Blood (Anna ~ Book 1)
Author: Kendare Blake
Publication Date: August 30 2011
Publisher: Tor Teen 
Length: 369 Pages
Add it to your TBR PileGoodreads
Buy ItAmazon US / Amazon UK

Source: Purchased (Kindle Edition)
Cover Love: Absolutely Gorgeous! The red is striking against the black and white.
Point of View: 1st person, following Cas

My Rating: 5 Stars

I have never seen a ghost and I have never personally met anybody that has claimed to have ever seen a ghost.  I think this is why ghosts stories spook me.  It is the fear of the unknown.  I would like to convince myself that I do not believe in ghosts and that the things that go bump in the night are just in my imagination.  And as strange as it may sound I think if I were to actually see a ghost or have an experience then I would not be as spooked as I am about them.   It would at least clarify the situation for me and I wouldn't be as worried about what may or may not be out there.  But for now... I am a big wuss when it comes to ghosts.

So why then have I read a book called Anna Dressed in Blood which is about a ghost?  Because at the end of the day the synopsis sounded intriguing and I knew I had to put my reservations aside and give it a shot.

I am so glad that I did because this book was awesome.  Let's meet the characters shall we?

Cas (full name Theseus Cassio) is a ghost killer.  I wouldn't use the words ghost hunter to describe him and please do not call him a Ghostbuster... he hates that!  This is what his father did and what his father's father did and so on.  Sadly his father was killed when he was younger and now at 17 he has been following in his father's footsteps for many years.  He treats each case as a stepping stone to getting stronger and faster so that he can one day go back to Baton Rouge to avenge his father's death by killing the ghost that murdered him.

His mother is a kitchen witch who helps him stay as safe as possible, helps with the packing up and moving on to a new city as a new job beacons and is very supportive of his calling.  She of course throws hints his way when it comes to her wanting him to find friends, maybe choosing to stay in one town to settle into school, etc... But Cas believes nobody can do what he can do and his calling is too strong.

His latest job brings him to Thunder Bay, Ontario.  He is there to kill Anna, also known as Anna Dressed in Blood.  She was 16 when she was murdered in 1958 and her murder was never properly investigated so nobody really knows what happened to her other than her throat was cut.  She haunts her childhood home and whoever enters is killed.  Not that there is a good way to be killed by a ghost but let us just say that the murders are brutal.

In order for Cas to learn more about the area and Anna's story he must befriend the High School Queen Bee.  We all know 'that girl' right?  The one that walks around knowing she owns the place and everybody falls over their feet to do whatever it is she asks.  In this school her name is Carmel.  I didn't think I was going to like her but in the end I really did.  I loved that once we got to know her she was actually down to earth, helpful and very loyal.

Along the way Cas also finds Thomas.  Thomas walks around with wrinkled clothes, is a nerd and is a witch...  Oh and did I mention he can read minds?  He also has a crush on Carmel and it was lovely to see their friendship with each other take shape.  Obviously Thomas is the last person that Carmel would have ever normally hung out with but again I was always finding myself surprised by her.

Cas has never really had friends.  He finds the Queen Bee in every school to get the information he needs, does his job and moves on.  But this time it is different, he ends up needing their help... slowly he realizes that he enjoys their help and enjoys having them around.  He starts thinking what it would be like if he could stay in Thunder Bay rather than immediately moving on to the next city.

Enter Anna.  I loved Anna!  Dark, mysterious, dangerous, scary, kind, sweet, loving... She was a bit of everything.  Anna has killed everything that has come into her house, until she meets Cas.  After their first meeting Cas is drawn to her and continues to go back to talk to her.  Anna is unlike any ghost he has ever come in contact with.  For one she is more aware of her 'situation' than the other ghosts he has killed.  In other words she knows she is dead and what happened to her.  She is also strong, very strong!  He is driven to find out how she died and what has made her this strong.  While finding the answers to these questions you can see him starting to have real feelings for Anna and she for him.  He becomes very protective of Anna and stands in the way of her coming to any harm and vice versa.  But really what kind of relationship can a boy who is alive and a girl who is a ghost have? How will they be together?  How will it end?

Well... You will need to read it to find out but I promise that you will enjoy it!

Now back to me being spooked by ghosts.  There are parts where I was spooked and yes it is creeptastic but I was never really scared.  Freaked out is a better description.  The author does an amazing job of blending the spooky scenes and the comedy.  Yes comedy.  Cas is hilarious.  His interactions with others and the thoughts in his head really made me laugh at times.  It was a nice mixture of emotions and made it to where I was never really frightened.

I am really looking forwarded to starting Girl of Nightmares which is book two in the Anna series.  I have not been able to find news anywhere as to how many books in the series there will be but I am sure it will be more than two... at least I hope so anyway.

“... the cupboards start opening and closing by themselves, drawers slamming shut and the walls start to bleed. Slamming doors and smashing plates. Anna is acting like a common poltergeist. How embarrassing.”

Wednesday 26 September 2012

Author Spotlight: H.P. Mallory

H. P. Mallory is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Jolie Wilkins series as well as the Dulcie O'Neil series. She began her writing career as a self-published author and after reaching a tremendous amount of success, decided to become a traditionally published author and hasn't looked back since. H. P. Mallory lives in Southern California with her husband and son, where she is at work on her next book.

Find HP Mallory on: 

When did you know that you wanted to be a writer?

Since I was a little girl. When I was 12, I used to write tons of stories with my best friend and then all through high school and college I took creative writing classes. I was an English major in college so I think I've always had the writing bug!

What books or authors have most influenced your life?

So many! As an English major, I definitely have a love and admiration for the classics. I would say my most fav classic book would be Pride and Prejudice.

I can imagine that you are very busy with your own writing but have you been able to read anything new recently?

No. LOL I barely have enough time to write. It's unfortunate because I used to be a huge reader!

Can we have a peek into 'a day in the life of HP' when you are writing?

Sure. I take my son to school in the morning and then I'm in my office either editing or writing for a few hours. I also try to find time to answer emails and to get in touch with my readers on Facebook and then it's back to more edits or writing until I have to pick up my son.

How long does it normally take you to write a book?

It depends if I'm on a deadline. I have written a book in as little as a month but that was painful. Usually it's about a 2 and a half month process.

Do you have any interesting or fun writing quirks?

No not really. I'm pretty boring when it comes to my writing procedure. LOL

Your books fall into the paranormal romance/fantasy genre. What do you enjoy most about these types of books?

I love the freedom to create worlds and characters. It's very liberating!

Have you ever thought about writing in a different genre? If so what could you see yourself writing?

Maybe historical fiction. I really love history!

When and how did you come up with the idea to write Fire Burn and Cauldron Bubble, the first Jolie Wilkins book?

I wrote Fire Burn about six years ago when I was living in Cambridge, England. And I got the idea because I was reading lots of paranormal romances and couldn't really connect with the heroines because they weren't ordinary enough. I started thinking about creating a heroine who every woman could relate to and that's how Jolie was born!

Can you explain the emotions that were going through you when you wrote the final sentence in the Jolie Wilkins series? What will you miss most about our favorite witch?

I cried! It was hard to say goodbye to the Jolie series but I did feel it was time. I think I'll miss Jolie's quirky personality and her innocence. I am really excited to continue her story but in another narrator's point of view. And I can't wait for everyone to find out just who this character is! All very exciting!

You have said previously that there will be a spin-off from the Jolie Wilkins series. When can we hope to learn more about this new series and who it will be following? Any idea of when we can expect to see the first book?

Not sure on when the first book will be out. Maybe the beginning or middle of next year? It depends on if I self publish it or if a publisher picks it up...

What can we expect to see from you in the rest of 2012 and into 2013?

There will be another Dulcie book, Malice In Wonderland, coming out Nov 19th and then another early next year. I'm also going to be debuting a completely new series in March of next year and I'm super excited about this one! More to come on that soon!

I would like to give a HUGE thank you to H.P. for allowing me to interview her!  This was my first Author Spotlight and I am honored that it was with H.P.  I truly love her books and will continue to read anything she publishes.  If you have not read her books they are highly recommended!



Tuesday 25 September 2012

Review: Something Witchy This Way Comes

Title: Something Witchy This Way Comes (Jolie Wilkins ~ Book 5)
Author: H.P. Mallory
Publication Date: September 25 2012
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 0345531582
Length: 336 Pages
Link to SynopsisGoodreads
Source: Direct from Publisher via NetGalley
Buy ItAmazon US / Amazon UK

My Rating: 3 Stars

Point of View: 1st Person, following Jolie

From the moment that I read the first sentence of Fire Burn and Cauldron Bubble I have loved Jolie Wilkins and the two men in her life, Rand and Sinjin.  Of course I have always loved Sinjin more... much, much more in fact (even though it took me a while to admit this to myself).  So when I heard that this was going to be the final book in the Jolie Wilkins series I was filled with a mixture of emotions.  I was sad because I love Sinjin and did not want his story to end however I was also filled with hope because HP Mallory has said there will be a spin-off trilogy from one of the characters from this series.

It has been apparent from the 4th book in this series that the love triangle was pretty much broken and that Jolie would be with Rand.  This did not fill me with joy.  Although, with the promise of the spin off I have been hopeful there is the possibility for more Sinjin.

Anytime you go into an announced final book in a series that you love there is a bit of dread.  What if it doesn't live up to your expectations?  What if the answers that you are dying to know are not answered?  What if the wrong decisions are made by your favorite characters?

With all of these questions in mind I have to say that sadly I was a little disappointed in this fifth and final book in the Jolie Wilkins series.  There were so many unanswered questions left wide open, brand new characters introduced in the final 20% and so many conversations between Jolie and Sinjin that never happened...

I can only assume that the spin off is going to carry on with the same main storyline but just from a different person's point of view.  So I think that is where some of my frustration is coming from because I assumed everything would be tied up nice and tight with a neat little bow.  But it wasn't.  I just assumed the spin-off would follow a new path and new storyline but I really hope now it carries on with the same plot so that these answers and much needed conversations take place.

I also felt that this book had a completely different feel to it than the other books in the series.  I found Jolie's internal monologue out of the ordinary.  Yes in the previous books she has always had the conflictions in her head but in this book she has full on arguments with herself.  As in pages at a time she is just sat talking to herself, arguing back and forth.  At one point she actually thinks something that the part of her inside agrees with and she even comments on how that was the first time in a long time that she has agreed with herself on something...?  Maybe in her last bout of time travel she was spliced and there are actually two of her in her mind?

However... my biggest complaint would be the lack of Sinjin. Yes this is coming from quite possibility the biggest Sinjin fan of them all so it would only make sense that I would be unhappy if he was not a large part of the book.  To be fair he was in the first 20% a little bit, then he left at 20% and we do not see or hear from him again until 78%.  What?!?  How is this possible?  Every other book has been filled with the interactions between Jolie, Sinjin and Rand.  Everything has always hinged on those relationships.  Then we have the final book in the series and one of the major characters is missing in action.  Again I can only hope that it is because he will play a larger role in the spin-off.

I know it is going to seem from reading this review that I did not like this book but I want to assure you all that I still do recommend it. My annoyance with the book is rooted in my love of a character and it has been difficult for me to separate my love of Sinjin from the equation and therefore I feel I may be overly critical of the book because of this.  It is not in anyway my favorite of the series but feel it is important to read it so that you can carry on with the planned spin-off.  However as a stand alone without reading the other books in the series I would not recommend that course of action... although I wouldn't recommend that with any series book.  It is always best to read them all.

The Jolie books have been a joy to read and I hope this review helps those reading this book.  If you do not go into it thinking it is the normal end of a series type of book then it will help alleviate any disappointment when the story is not all wrapped up in the end.  If you go into it with hope that the questions will be answered in the spin-off then you will be fine.

I just hope Sinjin will eventually find happiness because he truly deserves it...

Monday 24 September 2012

Review: Beautiful Disaster

Title: Beautiful Disaster (Beautiful ~ Book 1)
Author: Jamie McGuire
Publication Date: July 13 2012
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Length: 527 Pages
Link to SynopsisGoodreads
Source: Purchased (Kindle Edition)
Buy ItAmazon US / Amazon UK

My Rating: 5 Stars

Point of View: 1st Person, following Abby

You know those types of books that you find where people either love them or hate them?  On those books you will find a ton of 5 star reviews, a ton of 1 star reviews and only a few in between.

This is that type of book.  From my 5 star rating above you can quickly see that I am in the “I loved it camp”.  Now, I do not usually use a book review to get up on my soap box but I really do feel that I need to use this platform to express my opinion about this book and these types of books and the ‘bad press’ that they get.

It is easy to tell from the book synopsis and from other reviews that this book is a love story filled with angst.  It is also very clear from other reviews that it is the kind of love that is filled with high emotions, the kind of love where they need each other more than they need the air they breathe and that there is a controlling element from one or more of the characters.

Why may I ask do people even start a book where these subjects are clearly stated if they know they do not like these types of books?  They end up reading half (or less) of it, saying something like “Nope, can’t read anymore...”  And then they continue to review the book and give it a 1 or 2 star rating.  How?  Why?

I completely get that not everybody likes the same type of books. And if you start a book, finish the book and want to give an opinion on it then I will read that opinion, take it all in and then a discussion can be formed with the differing opinions.  But when somebody goes out and starts a book about a subject matter that they know from the start they are not going to like (i.e. men with control issues...)  I just don’t understand the logic behind this?  But to actually go and put out a review and star rating on something that they never finished.  Nope, I do not agree with this.  Or if you read the book just because you ‘want to see how bad it really is’, why bother?  Life is too short and there are too many books that you know you will enjoy out there, go read one of those.

If you go through my past reviews you will see I tend to give a lot of 4 and 5 star reviews, it is very rare that I will give a 3 and I honestly do not believe I have ever given a 2 or 1.  This in no way means that I am a soft reviewer.  I tend to only read books on subject matters and in genres that I know I am going to enjoy; therefore the book would need to be truly awful for me to not like it enough to give it at least a 3 star rating.  I would never start a book on a subject or in a genre I did not like, going in knowing that I wouldn’t like it, not finish it and then give a low star rating.

I do feel bad that this review has had to start with such a long rant but I just feel I owe it to this book and other books like it, to press to the point about the negative reviews out there.  There has also been a lot of talk about the author lashing out about the negative reviews.  I will not be giving my opinion about that as I am here to review the book, not the author. 

Now, with that out of the way let us get on with the awesomeness that is Beautiful Disaster.

Beautiful Disaster follows Abby (aka Pigeon) and Travis (aka Travis ‘Mad Dog’ Maddox’).  As mentioned above the book is filled with angst, an all consuming love that goes up and down like a roller coaster... it is wonderful and you will enjoy the bumpy ride.

In the synopsis this is how Abby is described, “The new Abby Abernathy is a good girl. She doesn’t drink or swear, and she has the appropriate percentage of cardigans in her wardrobe.”  I really think this synopsis needs to be updated.  To me this does not describe Abby at all.  I never got the impression that she didn’t drink.  In fact she makes a point to show on several occasions that she can down ‘em with the best of them.  And swearing?  There is swearing but I never noticed that she wasn’t doing any of the swearing so it is not exactly focused on her not doing it.  It is not like she is always scolding Travis or her friends when they swear.  What is clear is that Abby has gone away to college to get away from something in her past.  At first I got the impression that it was just an old boyfriend, somebody she dated for a long time, he wanted to stay in Kansas she wanted to move on... But soon you realize it is much more than that.  Her past is messy, filled with gambling, family issues, debts and the mob... you can understand why she wanted to get away and to create a new identity for herself.  Then enters Travis into her life...

In the synopsis this is how Travis is described, “Travis Maddox, lean, cut, and covered in tattoos.”  This is spot on!  On the outside he appears to be the bad boy, is involved in underground fighting, smokes, drinks and is a serial womanizer.  However, it does not take long at all to find out that he is also kind, part of a fraternity, is very intelligent and studying criminal justice.  His mother died when he was very young and it was him, his father and his three brothers.  That is a lot of testosterone and it is how he learned to fight from growing up with them all.  Because of the lack of a mother figure growing up, I feel this is why he has no problem with having sex with a woman and kicking her out of his apartment soon after. He doesn’t get phone numbers, he doesn’t let a girl into his bedroom (the above will normally take place on the living room couch) and he is not ashamed of this at all.  Then enters Abby into his life...

Travis’ cousin, Shepley, is dating Abby’s best friend America.  Once they meet it is obvious that they like each other but because of Travis’ reputation Abby is obviously guarded around him and the whole 'bad boy' thing is exactly what she does not want to get into.  Rather than push his luck he decides to try to be friends.  Abby is different from the other girls and challenges Travis, she doesn’t bat her eyelashes or twirl her hair to get his attention.  He wants to be close to her so if that means becoming her friend, something that he has never done before, then that is what he sets out to do.  Abby and America decide to stay with Travis and Shepley when the hot water boiler at their dorm breaks down.  Abby is under the impression that she will be in the living room or that Travis will be.  But she soon finds out that he has every intention of them sharing his bed... only as friends though.  He helps her study, they start spending more time together outside of school, and she starts defending him around the school when she hears others talking badly about him.  The stay was only meant to be for about a week but because of a sly little bet between Travis and Abby it turns into a month.  Then enters Douchebag into both of their lives...

Douchebag (aka Parker) is a love interest for Abby.  He is part of Travis’ fraternity, good looking, rich, planning on going to Harvard, drives within the speed limit and obeys all traffic laws... and is boring as heck.  *snore*  Travis calls him Douchebag and it just stuck with me.  Even when I saw his real name on the page I found myself saying Douchebag, it just fits perfectly.

Travis is overprotective and very jealous.  It is apparent he has a temper but he never lashes out at Abby. Yes he has no problem with throwing a punch or pushing the guys that come around Abby while they are out but again I was never in fear that his anger would turn on Abby.  He tries to allow her the space to date Douchebag but it doesn’t last long. To Travis’ credit it is made more difficult because Abby does play him.  She gets closer and closer to Travis and for whatever reason refuses to see that he cares for her more than she could ever understand.  The she forces herself to try to fall for Douchebag knowing that it is not who she wants to be with.  Travis and Abby are together, they are apart, they are together, they are apart... It is like a giant tug of war with your emotions but again you will find that you love every moment of it... even when you are screaming at your book or Kindle.

There are moments in the book where I wanted to smack them both, there were moments in the book where I threw my Kindle in my side drawer refusing to read anymore... then only five minutes later get it back out to keep reading.  I laughed (a lot), I cried, I smiled...  Last night when it was time for bed I was at 82% and there was no way I could stop.  I finally finished and realized it was 3:00am and had to be up at 8:00am for work, I regret nothing!

This has to be one of the longest reviews I have ever written but I feel very passionate about this book and I in a way take offence to the negative reviews that are out there from people that either didn’t finish the book or started reading it knowing they would not like it to begin with.  This just doesn’t seem fair at all to the author or the work they have put out.

In wrapping up... let us be honest, Travis is messed up in his own way and Abby is messed up in her own way.  There could never have been a more fitting title for a book because together their relationship is a Beautiful Disaster and it works for them.

“You’re trying to save him, and he’s hoping you can. You two are a disaster.”
I smiled at the ceiling. 
“It doesn’t matter what or why it is. When it's good, Kara…it’s beautiful.”

Side note:  It has been confirmed that Jamie McGuire will be publishing Walking Disaster (another perfect title) next year.  This will be Beautiful Disaster written from Travis' point of view.  Yes.. I did just audibly sigh.  I can not wait for this and I will be on countdown to April 16th, 2013.

Sunday 23 September 2012

Book Blogger Spotlight: Read. Write. Love.

Read. Write. Love.

When and why did you become a book blogger?

So I could get ARCs! Haha no, I kid, I kid.

I’m a newbie book blogger. I started my blog back in June 2012.  I love to review the books I read--it helps me to sort out my thoughts/feelings towards the book and helps it to sink in better. I also love the idea that my review could be helpful to someone thinking about reading the book. I’ve always wanted to try blogging so I decided to make a blog where I could share my reviews.

What is your favorite thing about blogging?

I love being able to connect with other fellow book lovers! I don’t have any bookish friends (except my bestie whom I unwillingly turned into a semi-bookworm. I was quite proud of that accomplishment), so being able to discuss books online is really exciting for me.

What do you find the hardest about blogging?

Well, as a clueless newbie *shy grin* the hardest part is figuring everything out. It’s like stepping into a whole new culture and having to learn all the customs and the language. I feel like a foreigner who has entered a community not knowing where I fit in or if I will be accepted. And it’s intimidating to ask a stranger for help!
Does your blog participate in any weekly features and if so which is your favorite?

I love Top Ten Tuesday by The Broke and the Bookish! The topics are always fun and since they’re lists they’re quick and easy to read.  And it’s fun to hop around and see everyone’s top ten :]

What has been your favorite moment since you became a book blogger? Which review, interview or giveaway have you been most proud of?

Well this is probably going to sound pathetic, but so far my favorite moment has been when I got my first follower *teary eyes*.  It was very encouraging to know that there was at least one person out there reading my posts and I wasn’t rambling on to myself like a crazy. Hey one step at a time, right?

What kind of genres do you enjoy reading and reviewing the most?

I love YA fantasy! Anything will do—dystopian, paranormal, high fantasy, etc.  As long as it involves something impossible (or fangs or claws) I’m down!

What is your favorite individual book or series? What makes you love it so much?

I have so many favorites, but I’m going to say the Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare. I love the characters, especially Will, and that series has just sucked me in emotionally.  It’s also the only love triangle that has really worked for me. I honestly don’t know if I want Tessa to choose Jem or Will.  Plus, Victorian England = awesomeness!

Who is your favorite fictional male character, why and from what book or series are they from?

Well, I have a little love triangle of my own going on here because I’m in love with both Jace (from Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments series) and Will (from her Infernal Devices series). They are both such intriguing characters that have gotten to me emotionally, and they’re sexy. Please don’t make me choose! *clamps hands over ears and runs away*

Who is your favorite fictional female character, why and from what book or series are they from?

Easy! Hermione Granger from Harry Potter. She’s smart, confident, brave, and awesome. She was basically my role model as a kid (and still is). And she’s a book lover like me :]

Who are your favorite three authors and why?

J.K. Rowling ~ Her characters and plots are so amazing! And her world building…so incredibly detailed. She’s my inspiration as a writer.

Cassandra Clare ~ Her characters and plots are the best I’ve seen since Harry Potter (in my opinion). I just fall in love with all of her characters! And I love her sarcastic, witty sense of humor.

Maggie Stiefvater ~ I just love the way that woman writes! It’s so beautiful. I can’t wait to get ahold of the Raven Boys!

What are you reading right now?

I’m reading Pegasus : The Flame of Olympus by Kate O’Hearn. I’m only 15 pages in so it’s too early to say if it’ll be good or not. But it’s about a girl who finds Pegasus in the middle of New York City and gets caught up in the war going on in Olympus…so it can’t be too bad, right?

Paper books or ebooks?

Paper! They smell nice :)

Which would be your favorite place to read? Curled up on a cold day in front of a fireplace, in front of a window on a lovely overcast rainy day or outside on a hammock on a warm summer’s day?

Curled up in front of the window on a rainy day! Its unwritten law that when it rains, I must read.

Milk chocolate, white chocolate or dark chocolate?

Milk chocolate ^.^ noms

Coffee or hot tea?

Well, considering I don’t like coffee or tea I’d have to say neither.  But if I had to pick the lesser of two evils, I’d go with tea. (I know I’m weird, don’t judge me for my beverage choices)

Would you like to give any other details about yourself? How can others find you around the web? Such as Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, etc...


Saturday 22 September 2012

Review: Onyx

Title: Onyx (Lux ~ Book 2)
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Publication Date: August 14 2012
Publisher: Entangled Publishing
ISBN: 1620610116
Length: 416 Pages
Link to SynopsisGoodreads
Source: Purchased (Kindle Edition)
Buy ItAmazon US / Amazon UK

My Rating: 5 Stars

Point of View: 1st Person, following Kat (There is one scene from Daemon's POV at the end)

I need more Daemon and Katy like I need air.  This is not an exaggeration...  I have read many books in my life and almost all of them include some form of love interest but I have honestly never read a series of books where the two main characters are so electric together.  Again, this is not an exaggeration.

The story picks up exactly where Obsidian left off, which I love.  It annoys me when a series jumps months or years between books.  Daemon is still the same hot and moody alien that we fell in love with in Obsidian.  Katy is still the same book loving book blogger who is torn in her feelings for Daemon, but really who is she trying to fool?  Dee was still her quirky, fun self and I still love her.  There is also an introduction of a new character, Blake.  He is the new guy at school and it doesn't take long for him to start getting closer to Katy and for him to reveal that he has a lot more in common with her than she knows.  Much to Daemon's protests they start to spend a lot more time together.  Blake and Daemon's interactions are hilarious.  Daemon can not stand the guy and he refuses to call him by his proper name.  Here are a few of the names that Daemon calls him...

Flake, Biff, Bart, Hank, Brad, Butler, Ben, Bobo, Bartholomew, Butter-Face, Bradley and Bill

And that is not even all of them, this was just the list I started making after the whole thing was cracking me up.  Daemon was so matter of fact about the names.  He just slides them into the conversation and never skips a beat.  It drove Blake insane, it made me laugh... many times!

As many times as I smiled and laughed there are also plenty of intense and even sad moments.  Jennifer has such a beautiful way of writing and you really are sucked into the story.  You are there with them while the events are unfolding.  You are yelling at the book, you are smiling, you are crying.  If you are out in public people will think you are crazy.  One moment you will have a smile that is so far stretched across your face they will think you have just won the lottery.  Then within minutes they will see your smile fade and will hear you mumbling to yourself as you try to speak to the characters.  Then a small smirk will appear on your face as the scene ends and you know that very soon you will be experiencing all of those emotions again.  It is a wonderful feeling.

There was so much action in this book.  Everything was up, down and all around.  There were so many times when I thought "Man, that has to be the big finale right?!"  Only to be so very happy to see what % I was on and to find further chapters awaiting me.  Then another big scene would come and I would think the same thing only to find I again still had more to read.  I can not explain how much I did not want this book to end.  Sadly it did, however... WOW what an ending!!  I cried.  I am not ashamed to say this, I cried and it was well justified.  December 11th can not come soon enough for me.  I will do everything within my power to try to get my hands on an advanced copy of Opal but if I can't I have already booked the release day off from work so that I can stay at home to do nothing but read it.

I can not recommend the Lux series more than I already have in my reviews.  I have forced three of my friends to start reading them and I have no doubt they will love them as much as I do.  So please if this type of story sounds even a tiny bit intriguing to you, do not hesitate to read them.  You will not be disappointed.

Friday 21 September 2012

Cover Reveal: Opal (Lux Series)

I am so very excited to be a part of the cover reveal for the 3rd book in the Lux series, Opal.  This book is set to be published on December 11 2012 and I can not wait for it's release and will be counting down the days in anticipation.  Now I ask you, how can you not love a book with that man on the cover?  Not only have the covers for this series been completely amazing... the books themselves are even more amazing!

No one is like Daemon Black.

When he set out to prove his feelings for me, he wasn’t fooling around. Doubting him isn’t something I’ll do again, and now that we’ve made it through the rough patches, well... There’s a lot of spontaneous combustion going on.

But even he can’t protect his family from the danger of trying to free those they love.

After everything, I’m no longer the same Katy. I’m different... And I’m not sure what that will mean in the end. When each step we take in discovering the truth puts us in the path of the secret organization responsible for torturing and testing hybrids, the more I realize there is no end to what I’m capable of. The death of someone close still lingers, help comes from the most unlikely source, and friends will become the deadliest of enemies, but we won’t turn back. Even if the outcome will shatter our worlds forever.

Together we’re stronger... and they know it.

Goodreads | Amazon US | Amazon UK | Barnes and Noble

On October 1st there will be an ~ EPIC CONTEST ~ Announcement.

Make sure to bookmark the page and check back on October 1st!

USA TODAY Bestselling author, Jennifer L. Armentrout, lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing, she spends her time reading, working out, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell, Loki. Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class where she spent most of her time writing short stories….which explains her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She also writes adult romance under the name J. Lynn.

Find Jennifer on: Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Website | Blog

Thursday 20 September 2012

Cover Reveal Announcement ~ Opal

Tomorrow, Friday September 21 2012, I will be able to reveal to you the cover of the 3rd novel in the Lux series, Opal.

Yes... you just read that correctly.  I have been picked to help share the Lux love and have been given a copy of the cover to share with all of you.  I can not wait to hit the publish button on the post because I believe you will all be just as excited as I am after seeing it.  It is simply perfect!

So be sure to check back tomorrow to take a look. I promise you will not regret it.  I have loved every single cover in the series but I have to say that this will be by far my favorite yet.  Stunning!

Tuesday 18 September 2012

Review: Obsidian

Title: Obsidian (Lux ~ Book 1)
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Publication Date: May 08 2012
Publisher: Entangled Publishing 
Length: 361 Pages
Link to SynopsisGoodreads
Source: Purchased (Kindle Edition)
Buy ItAmazon US / Amazon UK

My Rating: 5 Stars

Point of View: 1st Person, following Kat (There is a small bit at the end with two scenes from Daemon's POV)

I am going to see if I can get a feeling across to you.  Imagine that you have a set of freshly cleaned fluffy towels in the dryer.  The dryer dings to let you know that the cycle is complete.  You open the door and you are immediately hit with the warmth of the towels inside.  You reach in for them and the warmth slowly starts at your fingers tips and then moves all the way up your arms and into your chest.  Then as you are folding them you feel the tiny little sparks of electricity...

That feeling.  That is what you feel while reading Obsidian.  Not just from the warmth that you can imagine that is radiating from Daemon but the electricity that you can feel between him and Kat.  It is electrifying!  Honestly.

I think the easiest way to break down this review is to go through my favorite characters one at a time.

Dee.  She is Daemon's sister and I love her!  She is quirky and fun and very loyal.  She has a need to feel human and to live a life as close to a human as possible. You can tell how much she craves real friends and is overjoyed when she meets Kat.  Daemon does not make their friendship easy and pretty much does whatever he can to push Kat away.  She is also stuck in a relationship that she doesn't want to be in but feels there is no way to break free from it.  She really opens up throughout the book as you see her getting closer to Kat and making other friends at school.

Kat. Katy. Kittycat. Kitten.  She is called a lot of names but none are as awesome as Kitten.  I honestly found myself smirking every time Daemon calls her Kitten.  Kat is a fellow book blogger therefore right from the start I was on her side and loved her.  She is a bit of a recluse in that her favorite past time is at home with a good book, her laptop and her blog followers.  You can tell she is a bit shy but man does she know how to stand up for herself!  She doesn't back down from an argument and stands her ground against those that want to do her or her friends harm.  She is a great character and very relatable.  My only grumble with her is that she just can't seem to see through Daemon's facade.  I know it is easy for me who is seeing the situation from an outsider to say this but sometimes I just wanted to shake her silly.  Dee knows that Daemon really cares, we know that Daemon really cares... why oh why can she not see it?

Daemon.  Hhhmmmm.... What can I say about Daemon?  Hot!  Yep that is a word that I could use both literally and figuratively.  How can he not be hot when his true form is pure light?  How can he not be hot when he is described with a body to die for, dark hair and bright green eyes.  Yes. I love this man.  He is the quintessential bad boy but you can tell he is all soft and gooey inside.  He loves winding Kat [aka Kitten to him] up and I love reading about him winding her up and seeing how far he can push her.  He is torn between the feelings he is having for Kat and the reality of what a relationship with her will entail.  Both can be answered with one word.  Trouble.

If you are somebody that likes the instant love and relationship type stories then this book may not be for you.  There is a very slow burn of emotions between Kat and Daemon and to me it is at a perfect pace.  Yes there is an instant attraction by Kat toward Daemon, why would there not be?  But things take a while to really heat up but wow... when they are in the same room together it is almost unbearable.  As in I got goosebumps when they would lock eyes and hold each other's stare.  It is that electric!

As I mentioned above the book is written in 1st person POV following Kat, however there is a section at the end from Daemon's POV.  I loved reading those two scenes!  Yes we already know he does really care for her but getting that confirmation and seeing it through his sexy green eyes was a joy to read.

I would strongly recommend this series and I am really looking forward to reading book two, Onyx.


Giveaway: Something Witchy This Way Comes

We are officially 1 week away from H.P. Mallory's newest book, Something Witchy This Way Comes, which is also the last in the Jolie Wilkins' series.

I read my first H.P. Mallory book, Fire Burn and Cauldron Bubble, back in  May and I fell in love! Within no time I had read all eight of her books (which also includes the Dulcie O'Neil series) and since then her most recent The Witch is Back.

I have been counting down the days to September 25th so that we can all carry on with the story of our favorite witch Jolie, the love of her life Rand and the sexy vampire Sinjin who she just can't seem to stop thinking about.  However, as this is the last in the series I am of course also a bit sad.  It will be heartbreaking to say goodbye to Jolie.... but there is hope!

H.P. has announced that there will be a spin off trilogy based on a character from Jolie's series.  Who could it be?!  She hasn't made that public yet but those of us on Team Sinjin are hoping that if Jolie picks Rand as her one and only true love that the spin off is based on Sinjin.  I could easily read three (or even fifty or more) books that included Sinjin.

As a run up to the release of Something Witchy This Way Comes I will be giving away a free copy of the book.  There are a lot of ways to enter and one that you can do everyday that the giveaway is open so be sure to check back!  I will post a permanent link to the giveaway on the right-side column for easy finding.  I will announce the winner on the day of release, September 25 2012.  This is for US Residents only as the book will not be immediately published in the UK and I will be getting the book from and that does restrict it to those in the US (sorry to those in other locations).

I will also have another fun post in the coming week in relation to this new release... more on that to come soon!

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Oxford Weekend and Deborah Harkness

Well I am back from Oxford and Woodstock!  We had so much fun on our weekend trip and it was amazing to be at St Mary Magdalene's Church for the evening reading of Shadow of Night with Deborah Harkness.

The highlight in Oxford was our tour of the Bodleian Library, what an amazing place.  You walk in and you can immediately smell the old books and manuscripts. Could have stayed there for ages...

When we travelled over to Woodstock we could tell this was going to be a special night. The setting was amazing and the village was beautiful and quaint.

Deborah was such a lovely woman and came across as being so kind and you can obviously tell how intelligent she is. She stayed after to sign copies of all the books and to further answer questions. If anybody has the opportunity to go to one of her signings or readings I would strongly suggest that they go. Was a great experience.

If you would like to see the rest of the photos from our trip you can find them all HERE.

Sunday 16 September 2012

Book Blogger Spotlight: Great Imaginations

Great Imaginations

When and why did you become a book blogger?

I started my blog in March of 2011. But before that, I reviewed books on Goodreads for about 6 months (please don't go looking for these early reviews, my writing skills were terrible!). I'm not exactly sure why I decided to start a book blog, but I remember seeing other book blogs and envying what they were doing and wondering whether or not I could do it myself. The problem for me was wondering if I could blog and remain antisocial. I know this sounds weird but I don't really like people and I truly wanted to blog for me and let the chips fall where they may. In real life I am a bit of a loner and I hang with my animal more than people. All I wanted was to be able to continue that lifestyle into my blog and have it be an extension of who I am. Sometimes I am still trying to find that balance, but I am getting to the point where I am mostly satisfied.

How did you come up with the name of your blog?

Tough questions! I honestly don't know. It just came to me on a whim and I truly only thought about a blog name for about 5 minutes before deciding. I am truly lucky that nobody else had a similar name because I did not look beforehand. O_o  I am not known for being a creative person.

What is your favorite thing about blogging?

My favorite thing about blogging is all the wonderful people I have met. I know I just said up above that I am antisocial, and I am, but there are a lot of great bloggers that I have became friends with that totally get my personality and know why I am the way I am. It's wonderful when you can be yourself around people and no one judges you for it.

What do you find the hardest about blogging?

For me, it's reading fast enough to maintain content on my blog. I envy other readers who can read a book or more a day. I don't know how they do it. That's the hardest for me and why I don't post daily. I have been battling with depression for years, and doing things on a daily schedule just does not work for me because I lack motivation. So I am lucky if I can post 3-4 times a week, and usually that's what I try to aim for.  But that's definitely the hardest. Finding motivation to read and write fast enough.

Does your blog participate in any weekly features and if so which is your favorite?

I participate in Stacking the Shelves when I have books to show my readers. That's the only meme I am currently participating in, though I am thinking about getting into Top Ten Tuesday. I really want to start growing my blog where discussion posts are concerned and I think that meme is a good way to get the juices flowing and provide me with writing prompts.

What has been your favorite moment since you became a book blogger? Which review, interview or giveaway have you been most proud of?

There have been so many! Reaching 3000 followers on Twitter, starting my editing page, posting my husband's Fifty Shades of Grey review, reaching my one year anniversary, being able to talk to so many fantastic authors...I could never just pick one. It's all been a highlight in my life.

Let's do it this way. I will give you a negative review I am most proud of, and a positive review I am most proud of. The negative review would be Wrecked by Anna Davies, and the positive review I am most proud of is Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff.

What kind of genres do you enjoy reading and reviewing the most?

I like reading young adult fiction and cultural fiction the best, especially if there is an Asian setting.

What is your favorite individual book or series? What makes you love it so much?

My favorite book is Memoirs of a Geisha and it probably always will be. That is the book that started my adult obsession with reading and it also started my fascination with Japan. I love the writing, the atmosphere, the setting, the characters, etc.  For me, it is the perfect book.

Who is your favorite fictional male character, why and from what book or series are they from?

Uncle Tully from The Dark Unwinding by Sharon Cameron, at least for now. This is always changing, but Uncle Tully really resonated with me. I absolutely adore him. He's not a male character that you swoon over because I normally don't get all googly eyed over fictional characters.

Who is your favorite fictional female character, why and from what book or series are they from?

Again, I am going to go with Sayuri/Chiyo from Memoirs of a Geisha. I really fell for that girl and her story and everything she went through. I really believed it was real. But aside from that, I also really like Katniss from the Hunger Games series.

Who are your favorite three authors and why?

Maria V. Snyder, Jay Kristoff, and Charlie Higson. You are making me pick, so I choose those. But I'm more of a fan of individual books than I am authors. But If I have a go-to author, it's Maria V. Snyder.

If you could turn one book or series into films, what would you pick and who would you cast as the main characters?

Actually, I'm going to go with The Maze Runner series by James Dashner, and lucky for me, they are already turning that into a movie!

What are you reading right now?

Because it is my Blood by Gabrielle Zevin, and then after that it is Magisterium by Jeff Hirsch.

Paper books or ebooks?

I will always prefer paper books.

Which would be your favorite place to read? Curled up on a cold day in front of a fireplace, in front of a window on a lovely overcast rainy day or outside on a hammock on a warm summer’s day?

Can I say neither and choose a screened-in porch during a thunderstorm? But if I have to choose, I say hammock. I'm a warm weather girl.

Milk chocolate, white chocolate or dark chocolate?

Milk chocolate all the way.

Coffee or hot tea?

Coffee every morning, hot tea when I'm sick.

Would you like to give any other details about yourself? How can others find you around the web? Such as Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, etc...


Friday 14 September 2012

The Blenheim Palace Literary Festival at Woodstock

I am so excited about my plans for this weekend and really just wanted to share my excitement with everybody.  A few friends from work and I will be driving down to Oxford so that we can go to The Blenheim Palace Literary Festival at Woodstock.  I mean really... How beautiful is this setting?

Earlier this year another friend at work suggested that I read a book that she had fallen in love with.  That book was A Discovery of Witches.   To say I fell head over heels in love was an understatement!  Then shortly after I read book one of The All Souls Trilogy, book 2 Shadow of Night was released.  I fell in love all over again...


A little over a month ago I found out that the author, Deborah Harkness, was to be in attendance at the Literary Festival on September 15th.  Well I knew that the Lauras and I just had to go!  Yes, all three of my friends from work are named Laura, you would think this would be confusing but somehow it just isn't.  So... a plan was hatched for a Christine and three Lauras to drive the three hour drive down to Oxford to meet Deborah Harkness.

Here is a blub about the book reading that we are so fortunate to be attending...

A candlelit church at the dead of night is the perfect venue for a spooky introduction to Professor Deborah Harkness’s All Souls Trilogy. Historian Harkness has flown over from the United States to be at the festival to talk about her trilogy, which follows the story of Diana Bishop, a historian and reluctant witch who falls in love with mysterious vampire Matthew Clairmont. The All Souls Trilogy began with A Discovery of Witches, which went straight to number two on the New York Times bestseller list and is now being turned into a Hollywood movie. The second volume, Shadow of Night, which features an opening sequence in Woodstock, is now out in the UK.

Harkness is a scholar and student of history. She has researched the history of magic and science in Europe, especially between 1500 and 1700, and has spent spells researching at Oxford’s Bodleian Library and All Souls College Library.  She wrote works of non-fiction, including the award-winning The Jewel House about the practice of Elizabethan science, before turning to her novels. Her career in fiction began when she says she began to wonder ‘if there really are vampires, what do they do for a living?’ Prepare to be spooked!

Since we are going to be in and around Oxford I have also put together a full walking tour of all of the Discovery of Witches locations so that we can walk in the footsteps of Diana and Matthew.

While we are there we will be seeing All Souls College, The Bridge of Sighs, New College, the Covered Market and we will be taking a tour of the magnificent Bodleian Library.

So... as you can tell I am very excited!  We are going to have a lot of fun this weekend and I hope to be able to share a lot of great photos and memories with everybody after we return.

Whatever your plans are for this weekend I hope they are filled with a lot of fun and lots of book goodness!