Bookmarks! [2]

After a very busy week of studying, assignmenting and general busyness – I decided to spend some of my free time watching Veronica Mars and browsing the internet for pretty easy to make bookmarks.

The theme for this week’s set – Corner bookmarks. (All links go to a tutorial where I found the pictures. None of these are my own work. Credit to those crafty people who created them)

1. Monsters!¬†– How awesome do these look? I love the way they look like they devour the pages ūüėõ My kind of monsters.

2. Super adorable Bunnies!¬†– Since cute little bunny rabbits are illegal to have as pets in my state, this is probably the closest I’ll ever get to a rabbit. The only thing I’d be worried about is¬†accidentally¬†bending and breaking their ears as they have to live in¬†captivity¬†in my bag…

3. Simple Origami bookmarks¬†– These are quick and simple. I love these. I’ve made dozens of this type in the past with lolly/candy wrappers or other stray paper I’ve had around the place. Very handy.

4. Cute little origami Heart bookmark¬†– I love the look of these. And the ones in this picture look like they’re made out of newspaper. Recycling is awesome.

5. Gorgeous Butterfly¬†Origami¬†corner bookmarks¬†– These are my favourite of the lot. They are just… so beautiful. Not the most practical but lovely.

Anyone come across any good bookmarks lately? ūüôā

Advertisements

Book Review: Saving June by Hannah Harrington

Title: Saving June
Author: Hannah Harrington
Genre: Contemporary, Realistic Fiction 
Publisher: Harlequin Teen 
Publication Date: June 2012 (I received this book as a digital ARC from NetGalley)
Pages: 336
Rating: 4 stars

Synopsis (from goodreads):
‚ÄėIf she‚Äôd waited less than two weeks, she‚Äôd be June who died in June. But I guess my sister didn‚Äôt consider that.‚Äô

Harper Scott’s older sister has always been the perfect one so when June takes her own life a week before her high school graduation, sixteen-year-old Harper is devastated. Everyone’s sorry, but no one can explain why.

When her divorcing parents decide to split her sister’s ashes into his-and-her urns, Harper takes matters into her own hands. She’ll steal the ashes and drive cross-country with her best friend, Laney, to the one place June always dreamed of going, California.

Enter Jake Tolan. He’s a boy with a bad attitude, a classic-rock obsession and nothing in common with Harper’s sister. But Jake had a connection with June, and when he insists on joining them, Harper’s just desperate enough to let him. With his alternately charming and infuriating demeanour and his belief that music can see you through anything, he might be exactly what she needs.

Except June wasn’t the only one hiding something. Jake’s keeping a secret that has the power to turn Harper’s life upside down again.

My Review:

Harper Scott doesn’t know what to do or how to feel after her older sister June takes her own life just a week before graduation. All Harper knows is that her parents splitting her ashes is not what June would have wanted. For as long as Harper can remember, June had her heart set on escaping Michigan and going to the West Coast – more specifically, California. With no car, no money and no way her mother and overbearing aunt will let her go, Harper enlists the help of her best friend Laney and the mysterious boy who was somehow connected to June to help her do this one last thing for the sister she loved.

I enjoyed this book for many reasons. And the biggest of these was Harper. She’s hurting so much and is a little snarky and sarcastic and at times down right rude. But she still loves her sister so much regardless of what happened and she’s in pain over her death. Harper doesn’t always do the right thing but she’s just trying to get along with her life however she can. I really admired her for that.

As for Jake? I admit I was willing to write him off as a “hipster music snob with the tastes of a forty-year-old white guy” as Laney puts it. But Jake has more depth than that. He likes all kinds of music – not just the pretentious stuff – and I liked him as a character and loved him as a potential love interest for Harper.

Laney was a fantastic sidekick and character in her own right. More complex than first seems but doesn’t take the highlight off Harper and her story.

I loved the soundtrack to this story and the journeys that the characters took – musically, physically and emotionally. I thought the complicated issues of love, life and death were beautifully handled and I really enjoyed reading this novel.

Purchase the novel from:

Amazon / Book Depository 


It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #5

It‚Äôs Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly meme hosted by Book Journey. This is a great way to plan out your reading week and see what others are currently reading as well‚Ķ you never know where that next ‚Äúmust read‚ÄĚ book will come from!

What I Read Last Week?

Books I posted reviews for this week:

Cinder by Marissa Meyer
The List by Siobhan Vivian
Storm by Brigid Kemmerer 

This was an insanely busy week for me. I’m behind on reading and didn’t manage to finish the fourth book in the Morganville Vampires series. So no Morganville Monday this week but Feast of Fools will be read and reviewed by this time next week.

I also received my first ever digital ARC from netgalley to read and review! ¬†Saving June by Hannah Harrington has been read and I’ll post a review this week sometime.

Someone Else’s Fairytale¬†by Emily Mah Tippetts is also in my to-read list for the next few weeks. It looks fantastic and I’m really looking forward to reading it.

Big assignment due this week so I’m not sure I’ll be reading much – but then again sometimes when I have the most to do I need the biggest distraction.

Book Review: Storm by Brigid Kemmerer

Title: Storm (Elementals #1)
Author: Brigid Kemmerer
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Contemporary, Magic
Publisher: Allen & Unwin (Also published by Kensington)
Publication Date: May 2012 
Pages: 368
Rating: 4 stars

Synopsis (from goodreads):
Earth. Fire. Air. Water.

When Becca Chandler saves Chris Merrick from being beaten-up in the school car park, she has no idea how dramatically this one action will change her life. Chris is no ordinary guy and neither are his three older brothers. The Merrick boys are Elementals. Hot. Powerful. Dangerous. Marked for death.

Then there’s Hunter, the mysterious new kid around school, turns up with a talent for being in the wrong place at the right time. With her life at stake, Becca doesn’t know who to trust or whose secrets she should keep. and with two boy vying for her affections, and pressure rising all around her, will she find out in time who’s hiding the most dangerous truth of all?

Take Cover.
The storm is coming!

My Review:

Every bookstore I’ve been into in the last few weeks has had¬†a big display of this book. And when there’s that much hype about a book (and when I’m at my most paranoid and am convinced said book is following me about) I know I have to check it out.

Storm¬†had me captivated from the first chapter. After skipping out on a boring self-defence class (and wasting $60!), Becca Chandler discovers a some guys beating up Chris Merrick in the car park. With a flat phone battery and no way to call for help what does Becca do? Find someone to assist with breaking up the fight? Run away? Neither. Becca jumps in her car and tries to run the bad guys off with her elite driving skills… I fell in love with Becca from this moment on.

Still petrified and with a half-dead teenage boy to deal with, Becca somehow manages to drive him to his home where he and his three brothers live; Michael – the oldest and somewhat strict guardian of the family and twins Nick and Gabriel – who seem to enjoy making their brother’s life difficult. If¬†gratitude¬†was what Becca was after, the Merricks are not the guys to get it from.

Things get a little more complicated for Becca when she catches the eye of the New Guy in town – Hunter – who asks her and her bestie Quinn to a party. Is it in spite or because of the rumours around school regarding Bex? The bad guys from the parking lot are back to cause more trouble. It doesn’t seem like Becca can get a break. In between her estranged father back in town or the mysterious Merrick brothers – Becca is in for a lot more drama.

Becca is a fantastic main character. I love people who perform acts of great bravery especially when they’re scared half to death and in my mind this describes Becca to a T. She’s petrified when she comes across Chris in the car park but she doesn’t run and hide. Whilst I’m not sure trying to run over people in your car is a great move (the police are sure to have issues with it) I admire her for not just running away.

People with magical powers are always ones that I love to read about and the Merrick Brothers are no exception. Gabriel is a laugh. He’s just so cheeky and half the time I’m not sure if I want to kiss him or kick him. The rest of the group is just as endearing in their own way. Hunter was an interesting character. I loved the psuedo-hippyness that was his style and beliefs. And Quinn? She irritated me a little but she was real. Her behaviour whilst slightly annoying added to the novel and Becca as a real person rather than just a fictional character.

There’s quite a bit of drama going on in this novel. Family drama, supernatural drama, school drama – it’s all there but it all is woven together beautifully. And there are some real and horrific issues in this book. I have to admit I wasn’t exactly sure what was going to happen regarding Becca’s¬†reputation¬†and was surprised with how it all went down.

The ending was good if not a little anti-climatic. But I’m very happy that this is not a standalone book and that Gabriel’s book is up next!

Storm¬†reminded me in many ways of Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout – the regular girl getting involved with the family that’s just a little bit different and in need of protecting from their supernatural rivals.

It was a great read. One that I devoured in one evening… it even kept me up way past my usual bed time.

Purchase the novel from:

Amazon / Book Depository 


Book Review: The List by Siobhan Vivian

Title: The List
Author: Siobhan Vivian
Genre: Contemporary, Teen Issues, Realistic Fiction 
Publisher: Push (an imprint of Scholastic)
Publication Date: April 2012
Pages: 332
Rating: 3 stars

Synopsis (from goodreads):
An intense look at the rules of high school attraction — and the price that’s paid for them.

It happens every year. A list is posted, and one girl from each grade is chosen as the prettiest, and another is chosen as the ugliest. Nobody knows who makes the list. It almost doesn’t matter. The damage is done the minute it goes up.

This is the story of eight girls, freshman to senior, “pretty” and “ugly.” And it’s also the story of how we see ourselves, and how other people see us, and the tangled connection of the two.

My Review:

The List offers a snapshot view into the lives of eight students from the same high school. Each year a list goes up at the start of homecoming week Рa list no one knows who complies but lists the prettiest and ugliest girl from each grade. This book chronicles the events in their lives for one week.

Conceptually I loved this book. It deals with so many issues facing teens – eating disorders, virginity, first loves and heartbreak, sisters, families, popularity and self-image. This novel tries to tackle so much. And to me, that was what let it down.

At only 332 pages, it means that each girl’s story gets more or less 40 pages. As a snapshot into their lives it’s enough to see what’s going on at that one moment but I guess I’m greedy. I wanted to see the fall out. I want to know what happens to these girls on a long-term basis. One week’s glimpse into who they are and the problems they face isn’t enough to satisfy me.

As well as not getting to see enough of each girl, there were just too many characters to keep track of and get to know. Each girl had a family, friends, sisters and boyfriends. It was just too much to delve into properly. I would have loved this book so much more if there were less story lines and more time shown.

I thought that the author did a fantastic job at showing how much appearance and public image is important to high school students. As well as how rumours spread and the origin of the rumour doesn’t matter – as soon as it’s in the public realm, it’s as good as gospel. As far as being realistic – this book was brilliant. I could relate to ¬†each of the eight girls. I had been there myself or had a friend who was when I was in school. But there was just too much tried to be¬†condensed¬†into the book.

Purchase the novel from:

Amazon / Book Depository 


Book Review: Cinder by Marissa Meyer

Title: Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles #1)
Author: Marissa Meyer
Genre: Sci-Fi, Fairy Tale, Dystopia 
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends (an imprint of Macmillian)
Publication Date: January 2012
Pages: 387
Rating: 5 stars

Synopsis (from goodreads):
Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, the ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth’s fate hinges on one girl. . . .

Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She’s a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister’s illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai’s, she suddenly finds herself at the center of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world’s future.

My Review:

I’ve been told by a lot of people that¬†Cinder¬†was one of their favourite reads of 2012 and because of this I was nervous to read it. I tend to find that books that have people rave about almost never live up to my expectations. Luckily this was not the case with Cinder.

This is a retelling of the famous story of Cinderella but this version is set in a future where a race of people live on the moon and the people of Earth are celebrating the 126th anniversary of the end of World War IV. Lihn Cinder is one of the most gifted mechanics in New Beijing but she’s also a cyborg – a half human, half machine after suffering¬†devastating¬†injuries in a hovercraft accident when she was a child. As a cyborg, Cinder has no rights and must do all she is ordered to do by her stepmother and owner, Adri. True to her traditional counterpart, Adri forces Cinder to work all day long to finance her own lavish lifestyle and also forbids her ward to go to the ball. The ball where it’s rumoured the handsome Prince Kai will be finding a wife.

Cinder could care less about the ball and the Prince – all she’d be going to the ball for would be the food – until a chance encounter has her meeting the Prince. Finally the young cyborg understand what all the fuss surrounding him is about. But the Prince has more important things to worry about than a Ball and a wife – his father and his country is dying from a mystery disease which is spreading like the¬†Plague¬†and is fatal within a week of contracting it. The Queen of Lunar – the people of the moon – is also circling like a shark who smells blood. She wants to force Kai into marriage or she proposes war against the entire planet.

After an incident in a¬†junk-yard, Cinder is forced to participate in a clinical trial to try to find a cure to the mystery virus that plagues the Earth when actions are set into motion that will change her whole life – and possibly everyone else’s too.

For me the strength of this novel is that as a retelling of an old classic it stands up well. But it also¬†delivered¬†so much in terms of being a fantastic story in its own right. Cinder has the wicked step mother and horrid step sister but I loved the change of having one of the sisters being Cinder’s best friend and one of her closest companions. I truly enjoyed finding the similarities between the story I’ve grown up with and Cinder, but also I loved the differences.

In terms of characters – I loved them all. Cinder is a strong and tough heroine who hasn’t had an easy life and has a delightful sarcastic streak running though her thoughts. Her android, Iko, was fantastic. I think it said a lot about Cinder’s character that what she loved most about her robotic friend was her defective personality chip. The Prince, Kai, was every bit the classic Disney prince to me. He was gorgeous, flirty and trying to do what was right for his people at the expense of his own happiness. And the Doctor? He made this story for me. I found myself looking forward to his scenes in the book.

There’s a lot going on in this story – Evil Alien Queens, deadly viruses, a mechanic who dreams of running away to Europe – but Marissa Meyer managed to weave everything together in away that I found the entire book a pleasure to read. The twist at the end was fairly obvious to me from the first few chapters but that didn’t bother me at all – in fact I thought that it made the fairy tale feeling to the story all the more real because of it.

I have no idea where the sequel is going to take me but I am eagerly anticipating its release.

Purchase the novel from:

Amazon / Book Depository 


It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #4

It‚Äôs Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly meme hosted by Book Journey. This is a great way to plan out your reading week and see what others are currently reading as well‚Ķ you never know where that next ‚Äúmust read‚ÄĚ book will come from!

What I Read Last Week?

Books I posted reviews for this week:

Touch of Frost by Jennifer Estep
Kiss of Frost by Jennifer Estep
Insurgent by Veronica Roth
Immortal City by Scott Speer
Midnight Alley by Rachel Caine 

I loved the Jennifer Estep Mythos Academy series. I have preordered the third book, Dark Frost, which is released in a few weeks.

Insurgent was a fantastic follow-up to the first book in the series, Divergent. If you’re an¬†Divergent¬†fan then I can not recommend Insurgent highly enough.

Scott Speer’s Immortal City was a book I was really looking forward too and I felt a little let down by the characters but the plot was fantastic enough to keep me hooked until the last page.

I’m really starting to enjoy my Morganville Mondays. This series just keeps getting better with each¬†instalment.

What I Plan to Read This Week:

I’m definitely going to read¬†Cinder by Marissa Meyer¬†this week. It’s sitting right here on my desk looking very handsome indeed with some of the bookmarks I made this week.

20120522-001539.jpg

I bought a copy of Embrace by Jessica Shirvington the other day and hopefully will get around to reading it but first I need to finish reading The List by Siobhan Vivian.

I’m going to continue my reading of the Morganville Vampire series with the fourth book in the series, Feast of Fools.

 

This is the plan. But as John Lennon said, “Life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans,” so who knows what I’ll get up to. I have a few non-YA books I’ve been wanting to read but can’t seem to find the time.