Top 10 Dos and Don’ts of books on a budget.

Sign dollar and the books on scales. 3D image.Bit of a different top ten this time. hopefully this helps the rest of my Broke book-loving friends

10) Do make use of the library. it is FREE enough said. i am lucky enough that my library is great. it is HUGE. and has a fairly good range of books. so far the only downside to my library is they are yet to stock any New Adult books which are my favorites at the moment. just because you borrow a book from the library does not mean you can’t buy it. i look at the library as a great Try before you buy system and if you are like me and going through more than 4 books a week it can quickly save you a tone of money.

9) Don’t walk into bookstores. you are broke. you have no money. you can’t really afford to buy any books… there is no harm in window shopping? you will just browse?? you just want to check the prices??? NO avoid the siren call of the bookstore. nothing good can come out of walking into the arms of the beautiful creature waiting to drown you in debt.

8) Do  swap books with friends. so if for example i have 400 books on my shelves and you have 350 books on your shelf and John Smith over in the corner there has only 250 books on his shelves if we combine our collections all of a sudden we have 1000 books. sure we might have some doubles but the more people you are sharing books with the more variation you will have. this comes with the added bonus that you get recommendations. you are friends with these guys. chances are you will have some things in common.

7) Don’t  make friends with people who work in bookshops. i don’t care if they are nice, lovely wonderful, amazing, funny or any of those wonderful qualities you use to choose friends. They will be amazing at their jobs. they will have amazing recommend AMAZING books that you just HAVE to read and how are you to resist when the book is sitting right there in arms reach and what are a few dollars really going to hurt anyway right?

6) Do have a list we all have To-Read lists. I for one know my To-Read list is now longer than my Read list and growing longer everyday. but you need a second much shorter list a wishlist… or To-Buy list  most books on this list i hate to say must have been read already although there are a few exceptions. Books in a series that you have already bought (because you need the entire set), Books by your favorite Authors (i know i am going to love that new Snyder book so why wait),  books under $3 if a book you have been interested in reading shows up at an outrageously cheap price you would be a fool to decide to wait until after you read it and pay 3 times the price.

5) Don’t shop online without a specific book in mind. while checking prices online can be a great way of not only saving money (check out Fishpond for discounts for up to and over 50%) but also accessing books you may be unable to find in-store. it is dangerous to be able to shop at any time for as long as you like particularly when you can’t actually see quite how much you have bought. it is easy to get click happy (particularly with cheap books such as eBooks) and it adds up quickly. This tip probably works just as well in-store but when shopping in-store not only can you see just how much you are buying (if you can no longer carry it it is time to stop) and you are also better able to judge if you will like what you are buying. you can flick through it and see just how big the book is. while some online stores now offer those free samples (particularly of eBooks) not all of them do and it is hard to visualize just how big 386 pages is.

4) Do wait for sales and shop around. so the latest book in your favorite series has just come out and you race around looking for it because you need to have it NOW. but stop and think do you really need it the day it is released? buying a book the day it is released generally leaves you with only a few options of where to get it. the evil wonderfulness that is a book shop. most book stores will charge you the RRP which is often at LEAST $20-$30 now this may not seem much to pay for the next installment of a great story but if you wait a week or so department stores will start getting them as well usually at a reduced price. i made this mistake only this week going on a spending spree at Dymocks totaling nearly $100 only to see the books pop up at Big W the next day at nearly half the price and i had yet to even start reading any of these books. if you are determined to buy a book waiting a few days or so (until you are ready to read it) can save you a bucket-load… and if money is not your thing just imagine all the extra books you could buy

3) Don’t buy books because they are on sale. we have all done it seen a book that while only mildly interested us we have snatched up because it was 10, 20, 30% off. because hey it’s cheap if we don’t like it at least we didn’t pay full price. but the question is did you really want it? and could you really afford it? the answer is usually NO. only 2 days after spending all that money in Dymocks i get an Email from them telling me of a sale i get any 1 full priced book for 30% off “hmmm” i thought to myself ” well i can’t miss this” and raced myself down to the store and browsed through the collection to pick my 30% off book now i am smart so i figured i would outsmart them and buy the most expensive book that i wanted in order to save more money… (yes i also had to spend more) now the only problem was i found 2 equally expensive books that i wanted to buy and i could not choose which one i wanted… so i bought both… Yes the bookshop won. moral of the story. Sales are the shops way of making you spend MORE. sure take advantage of them but don’t go shopping just because there is a sale.

2) Do create a budget. this is one of my favorite tricks on this list at the beginning of the year i started putting at least $10 a week into a bank account i use only for books. now while that isn’t much (when you consider how many books i buy) by putting away money i am controlling my spending and i get used to missing that money out of my day to day expenses. the best part is that you are still allowed to buy books. and trust me when you are working on a budget you will be more clever with what you buy. i know there are books coming out that i will want to buy so i may save my money for a few weeks so i can buy them when they come out.

1) Don’t be afraid to try eBooks. until i got my eReader (i use a kobo) for Christmas i was firmly in the belief that they were evil. now that i have one i must admit i have fallen a little bit in love with my guilty pleasure. not only are eBooks often cheaper than hard copies (not that i have yet to pay for an eBook) but so many books are not available in print, so i actually have more to read. plus there are so many free eBooks available both through the regular stores for classics to copies given out buy authors for free merely for a review.

* I may or may not follow my own advice

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Series Review: Beautiful

this is one of the rare cases when the series rating probably won’t make sense when compared to the book ratings. while as books these were beautiful as a series this was a disaster. in my opinion sequels should really add to the story and i did not feel as though this quite added enough plus reading one of them spoils the other no matter which way you read them.

Series Rating 2 stars

Beautiful Disaster ~ Jamie McGuire

BD

Rating 4.5 Stars

Blurb

Abby Abernathy is a good girl. She doesn’t drink or swear, and she has the appropriate number of cardigans in her wardrobe. Abby believes she has enough distance from the darkness of her past, but when she arrives at college with her best friend, her path to a new beginning is quickly challenged by Eastern University’s Walking One-Night Stand.

Travis Maddox, lean, cut, and covered in tattoos, is exactly what Abby wants—and needs—to avoid. He spends his nights winning money in a floating fight ring, and his days as the ultimate college campus charmer. Intrigued by Abby’s resistance to his appeal, Travis tricks her into his daily life with a simple bet. If he loses, he must remain abstinent for a month. If Abby loses, she must live in Travis’s apartment for the same amount of time. Either way, Travis has no idea that he has met his match.

Review

I figured i would like this book ever since i read the blurb and when i saw the beautiful cover for the sequel i knew i had to bite the bullet and start this series, although now knowing that the second book is just Travis’s version of this one i am wondering if i maybe should wait to read it.
Despite the unnecessary conflicts arising in this book (from people not just admitting how they feel… although we have all done that) this book was great. Travis may have been a bad boy but he had a heart of gold, while at first this may only seem to be with Abby when you are first introduced to him properly he is quick to defend America as well. Abby may look like a good girl but she is not as good as she wants everyone to believe although i have to admit her secret was not quite as dark as i was hoping for. together the chemistry between these two was explosive and while some of the sex scenes seem to travel very fast (particularly the first one) i must congratulate McGuire on keeping her sex scenes tasteful without removing them entirely. despite how much i was cheering for both of them in real life i would be warning them away from each other. this is not a romantic book (despite being a romance) their relationship is sick and twisted and completely unhealthy he is the controlling, overprotective and violent boyfriend of my nightmares and she is the scared commitment-phoebe who is way to worried about what everyone else thinks. and yet somehow they work so incredibly well and the only reason given is love, but i guess that’s how it works.

Quotes

“I wish you and Travis would just get your shit together! You’re a goddamn tornado! When you’re happy, it’s love and peace and butterflies. When you’re pissed, you take the whole fucking world down with you!”

“You know why I want you? I didn’t know I was lost until you found me. I didn’t know what alone was until the first night I spent without you in my bed. You’re the one thing I’ve got right. You’re what I’ve been waiting for, Pigeon.”

“I knew the second I met you
that there was something about you I needed. Turns out it
wasn’t something about you at all. It was just you.”

“To douchebags!” he said, gesturing to Brad. “And to girls that break your heart,” he bowed his head to me. His eyes lost focus. “And to the absolute fucking horror of losing your best friend because you were stupid enough to fall in love with her.”

Walking Disaster ~ Jamie McGuire

WD

Rating 3 Stars

Blurb

Can you love someone too much?
Travis Maddox learned two things from his mother before she died:

Love hard. Fight harder.

In Walking Disaster, the life of Travis is full of fast women, underground gambling, and violence. But just when he thinks he is invincible, Abby Abernathy brings him to his knees.
Every story has two sides. In Beautiful Disaster, Abby had her say. Now it’s time to see the story through Travis’s eyes.

Review

while getting a view into Travis’s head was interesting i felt that this book did not actually give me much more than the last one. while i loved the epilogue the rest of it was all expected and some sections were rushed through. Now i know that as this book actually takes place DURING the last one … and is actually just the same story. i was expecting to be told more about his time away from Abby instead it was mostly comprised of their scenes together (kind of expected in a romance) but as Travis says most of what he is thinking i was not given much insight into his mind, this is more likely praise for the first book for being so well constructed than criticism for this one but it does beg the question was this book really needed? i am not entirely sure who this book is meant to entice. while the cover was pretty enough to make me want to read it and therefor the first one so much is suggested that you may not understand if you had not read the first one, yet there is not enough new material for those of us that have. Despite reading this from Travis’s POV i was still very much given the feeling that this was Abby’s story which gave the tone an interesting touch. while some of these chapters i was interested to see from Travis’s POV it almost seems like the original book could have just been told from a split view (as is so popular these days) maybe even with some overlap and i would not feel as if i was missing all that much.

Quotes

“Her expression turned serious. “In another life, I could love you.”

I watched her for a moment, staring into her glassed-over eyes. She was drunk, but just for a moment it didn’t seem wrong to pretend she meant it.

“I might love you in this one.”

“One of these days you’re going to fall in love, son. Don’t settle for just anyone. Choose the girl that doesn’t come easy; the one you have to fight for, and then never stop fighting. Never”

“There’s a girl, Dad.”
He smiled a bit. “A girl.”
“She kinda hates me, and I kinda…”
“Love her?”
“I don’t know. I don’t think so. I mean…how do you know?”
His smile grew wider. “When you’re talking about her with your old dad because you don’t know what else to do.”

Also By This Author

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Unmaking Hunter Kennedy

Unmaking Hunter Kennedy ~ Anne Eliot

UHK

Rating 4 Stars

Blurb

After a car accident–an event he considers a prank gone bad–pop star, Hunter Kennedy is forced to hide out with his aunt in small-town Colorado. He’s supposed to rest, heal his scars and attend high school in disguise until the press dies down. But he only wants to get back to work.
Worse, the girl who’s been assigned to make him over into a geek is a major geek herself. Vere Roth is a chattering pixie, a blushing tornado and a complete social disaster. He’s never met a girl who’s never-been-kissed, believes in romance and thinks Hunter’s a ‘nice’ guy.
Funny thing is…Hunter is nice around Vere because she’s his first real friend. He also can’t seem to stop sharing his secrets or keep her out of his heart. Knowing he’d never deserve a girl as sweet as Vere, he resigns himself to the friend zone, and helps his new bestie with her own makeover.
She tortures him daily for ridiculous guy advice on how to snag her life-long crush. A guy Hunter thinks is totally wrong for Vere, and sadly, one who has taken note of Vere’s transformation.

Review

This is the RIGHT way to write a celebrity romance. this is also the first romance i have read in quite a while where one or both of the romantic leads has not annoyed the crap out of me. Hunter is the perfectly charming leading man and although when i was first introduced to him i thought i would hate him my opinion of him turned around almost as soon as he was plonked down in the middle of nowhere. meanwhile Vere Was just so adorkable and reminded me of pretty much every girl (yes including me) i know while still maintaining her own unique character. the love story despite the oddity of circumstances was believable and just soooo damn CUTE. there are two right ways of doing a love triangle and this book used the little used “obvious choice” to good affect. she was always going to end up with Hunter, not only is his name in the title but Curtis his competition is a jerk with not a redeeming feature to him, an yet her crush on Curtis is still believable and understandable particularly when considering how long lived it has been. most of the side characters were brilliant and although i wanted to hit charlie… i often want to hit my own brother so that’s ok. the only problem i found was the ending being so rushed…, also i think Hunter’s mum is a bit of a bitch despite her somewhat valid explanation. the best parts of this book i found were to be the cute little everyday scenes between Hunter and Vere the chemistry is electric and sparks fly… and all those other cliche’s

Memorable Quotes

“You’re the luckiest person in the whole world to have already figured out what you love. And you’ll be, quite possibly, the stupidest person in the world—if you don’t hold on to it.”

“she thinks we‟re both of the same species, but vultures don‟t make friends with
hummingbird”

Also By This Author

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Into the Night

Into the Night ~ Jade Fowler

(Into the Night #1)

5.5"X8.5" Post Card TemplateRating 4 Stars

Blurb

Fantastic employment opportunity.
No experience necessary.
Training provided to successful applicant.
Free food and board also provided.
If you are looking for a challenge in an exciting and active position, please phone…

It sounds like the perfect job, but for Logan any job will do, because he needs one desperately. Told he will be helping to display a unique collection, it isn’t until Logan gets the job that he finds out exactly what he has signed up for. The unique collection is actually a group of supernatural creatures. And to display them, he will have to fight them in an arena for the entertainment of the rich.Logan thinks it must be a hoax, but when he reaches the estate where he is to work and live, he finds out all he was told is true. Werewolves, vampires and zombies exist, and one day he will have to fight them.

Penny seems to have it all. Not only is she the adopted daughter of Logan’s billionaire employer, but she also has the ability to read minds and see the future. Logan and Penny quickly form a friendship, but they have obstacles to overcome to make it work. Like the fact that Penny knows everything Logan’s thinking. But Logan’s thoughts aren’t the only thing Penny knows.

Into the Night is a young adult paranormal fantasy novel, suitable for readers 16+. It is the first in a series

Review

WOW
this is one of the most amazing and most wonderfully original debuts i have read in ages. i admit i found the beginning a tad slow and i would giggle quietly to myself at every mention of smell because no other book i have read describes smell quite as much as this one But it did not take long before i was anxiously turning the pages to discover what happens next. This story is a story of modern day gladiators and of course killing wild animals is boring so instead they go up against some of the scariest paranormal creatures ever to haunt nightmares. highly recommended for lovers of The hunger games and paranormal fiction (duh). The characters were deep with even the minor characters having their quirks and back-stories while the main characters had secrets so deep they managed to keep them from each other and me as the reader, the story would often take turns so unexpected that i tripped in my haste to follow them but i was always pleasantly surprised as to where they led. While Logan’s stupidity at taking the job in the first place surprises me it is Almost believable given his circumstances. the ending was cruel even if deep inside me i did expect it… although mixed with this cruelty there was one kindness there is a sequel.

Next book

From the Ashes

no cover or release date as of yet

Fire

Fire ~ Heather James

(Elements of Power #1)

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Rating 3 stars

Blurb

Is control over the elements a gift, or a curse?

Roxy thinks that she is in control of everything: with flames flaring at her fingertips and an equally fiery attitude, what more could she need? But then she meets Brae, a prince from a rival Realm, who turns her assumptions of superiority upside down.

Jasmine has none of Roxy’s confidence or intensity. But she does have a secret – and Brae – and she’s not going to give either up willingly.

Review

I would like to thank Heather James for a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
This book starts with a bang but then it kind of fizzles until the second half when it is once again up and running. The story is told by two girls, Roxy and Jazz who in many ways could not be more different. Roxy comes from the cruel hellion realm where everything is bright, passionate and fiery. Jazz comes from the peaceful Arcan Realm where religion is highly valued and colour is rarely worn. When events pull both of these girls towards Brae, prince of the Arcans they may find they are not so different after all. This book is quite well written particularly for a self-published debut novel, however there were some things (for me at least) that fell a little flat. While the realms were wonderfully thought out each being given their intricacies it almost made them a little flat with each realm being quite specific in their personalities, this led to a few characters blending. The book itself reminded me in many ways of the “Avatar the last air bender” series which given how much I love that series is not such a bad thing. And I must say I am curious as to where this story will be taken in the next book. I loved the development of Roxy but I felt as if I didn’t get to know Jazz or Brae quite as much as I would have liked. The lack of reaction when her secret came out, I must admit surprised me, but perhaps this is merely being addressed in the next book.

Next Book

at this stage the next book in the series is unknown

Reincarnation

Reincarnation ~ Suzanne Weyn

0-545-01323-2

Rating 3 stars

Blurb

The ultimate historical romance: one love story unfolds over many centuries and many lives in this captivating page-turner from Suzanne Weyn.

From prehistory to the present, theirs was a love for the ages. It starts with a fight in a cave over an elusive green jewel . . . and then travels over time and lives to include Egyptian slaves, Greek temples, Massachusetts witch trials, Civil War battlefields, Paris on the eve of World War II, America in the 1960s . . . and a pair of modern-day teenagers. For readers who believe that love is stronger than time or death, this is an unforgettable novel from a wonderful storyteller.

Review

This book was the most original thing I have read in a long time. An interesting cross between a collection of short stories and a novel this story tells the talk of two souls destined to be together. Despite my usual avoidance of short story collections I liked this as I loved finding the little connections between the tales. Plus you have got to love a book which successfully kills off at least 1 main character in each chapter.

the only real downsides to this story are;

  1.  As it is in the form of short stories by the end of the book I do not really know any of the characters that much better than I did at the start.
  2. the story of two star-crossed lovers does get a bit repetitive after a while, although Suzanne Weyn does manage to still keep it somewhat original through the environment and situations she places the lovers in.

I would recommend this book to romantics, lovers of short stories and those interested in historical fiction. however I would also suggest those who don’t enjoy these things to try it out as well as it is a very thought provoking read, even if it is not your sort of thing.

Also By This Author

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Series Review: Graceling Realm

Ever since I first read Graceling I have been dying to get my hands on this set of books so I could read them all. just a few quick memo’s on this series. the first book “Graceling” is the only book in the series NOT named after the main character (not important at all but I thought it was interesting) there is only one character who links all three of these books (and you will be surprised who it is). the labelling for this series is a little tricky. first you have Graceling. then you have Fire, which is a “companion” to Graceling. Finally you have Bitterblue which is a “sequel” to Graceling and a “companion” to Fire. when you add in the fact that the books are not even in chronological order working out how to read them gets a bit tricky. I would recommend them reading them in order of release date.

*** these reviews may contain spoilers***

Series Rating 4.5 Stars

Graceling ~ Kristin Cashore

grace

Rating 5 Stars

There is really very little not to like with this book. I Love Katsa (who doesn’t love a kick butt heroine?) Po is a sweetie and I love how as the story progresses, rather than changing, the characters merely become more of who they are. As is the case with any book with more than one kingdom it can be tricky to keep them all sorted. That being said the ones you need to know stand out and you are given all the information to keep those three sorted. Plus the whole basis of the story, being “graced” was just genius. I am a little disappointed that I wont be hearing more of Katsa and Po but I am glad that I still get to delve into this realm again.

Quotes

“I’m not going to wear a red dress,” she said.
“It would look stunning, My Lady,” she called.
She spoke to the bubbles gathered on the surface of the water. “If there’s anyone I wish to stun at dinner, I’ll hit him in the face.”

“Perhaps I can stay by the fire and mend your socks and scream if I hear any strange noises.”  

“And I suppose it never occurred to you to start small. If I told you my roof needed rebuilding, you’d start by knocking down the house.”  

“‘It’s quite boring really, the way you beat me to death with your hands and feet, Katsa. It’ll be refreshing to have you come at me with a knife.”  

Fire ~ Kristin Cashore

fire

Rating 4.5 stars

this book takes place in a neighbouring kingdom about 40 years before Graceling, that being said it is still most defiantly written to be read afterwards, although if you had not read Graceling you would still be able to follow the story (but there are spoilers). the prologue gives the back story of one of the prominent characters from Graceling but after that you don’t hear about anything linking the two books until just over halfway through, until this point I almost thought that putting this book in the same series was merely done to capitalise on what a wonderful book it was as the lore in the two books is so different. While not as good as the first book I certainly was not disappointed with this sequel. the relationships in this book were dynamic and interesting and often (but not always) I only caught onto a twist just before it happened, although I have to wonder if there was any normal functioning relationships in this story. with yet another heroine dead set against marriage (although in Fire’s case in particular I can understand why) I do wonder what Cashore has against it… needless to say I will probably be shocked by a wedding when it does happen (now that I have said it probably happens in the next book).

Quotes

“Great! He has indigestion, so let’s torture him with cake.”  

“There will be no yelling at people who are bleeding themselves to unconsciousness.”  

“I know this is a war, but the rest of us are trying to pretend it’s a party.”  

“We’re going to win this war, you know, now that our army’s together. But the world doesn’t care who wins. It’ll go on spinning, no matter how many people are slaughtered.” After a moment, he added. “I almost wish it wouldn’t, if we aren’t allowed to go on spinning with it.”

Bitterblue ~ Kristin Cashore

blue

Rating 3.5 Stars

This book was the longest book in the series and yet I felt that despite that it did not tell as much as either Fire or Graceling. while Katsa and Fire were strong and adventurous, having enough money and power to buy themselves freedom but not enough to bind them. I felt Bitterblue as a queen was mostly not able to take these adventure as even she bemoaned. therefore all that was left to make the story move forward was political intrigue… which I found to be mostly quite predictable. Bitterblue is shown as being Smart and yet from the beginning of the book she lets her council members tell her what laws she should be passing, or what information she should find important, she is nothing but a puppet. finally while both Graceling and Fire had a beautiful love story weaved in, Bitterblue despite the length and two candidates never actually reached the romance (which is funny coming from the only character so far that is open to marriage).
on the other hand this book did tie up all the loose ends from the other two books (even if it finished with more lose ends than we started with) and it also brought all the books together. Also despite all the bad I have said about it, this was still an enjoyable read only brought down by my high expectations given to me by the rest of this series.

Quotes

“Bacon improved things dramatically.”  

“His name was Death. It was pronounced to rhyme with “teeth”, but Bitterblue liked to mispronounce it by accident on occasion.”  

“Only a person with the true heart of a dictionary-writer would be lying in bed, three days after being stabbed in the gut, worrying about his P’s.”  

“I wish people would stop hitting Po,” whispered Bitterblue.
“Well,”  Giddon said.  “Yes.  I’m hoping Skye is following my model.  Punch Po; go on a long trip; feel better; come back and make up.”

“How acutely sometimes the presence or absence of people mattered”  

The Iron Traitor????

Well we have a cover reveal and for once despite how the cover looks I am not overly impressed. Don’t get me wrong the cover is beautiful but … well maybe I should just show you. The cover reveal this week is none other than Julie Kagawa’s The Iron Traitor.

ironfey2

See in theory a very pretty cover. My problem with all this is the lack of continuation. But that is not only seen in the cover but in the new title too. This book is book number two in “the call of the forgotten” which is a spin off series of “the Iron Fey” and here lies my problem these are the covers of the “Iron fey” books.

66441178590600 11699143  14061938

Oooh so pretty aren’t they? and yes if you a regular reader you may notice I have in-fact mention these before. now look at the cover for book 1 of the spin off series

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hmmm? So which series would you say “the Iron Traitor” falls under? With it’s title change from “the Traitor Son” and reverting to the old cover style, this book looks like it is ready to take pride of place as “the Iron Fey book 5”. All that being said the cover is still very pretty… and really as the next book in a series I love, by an author I love, it is not going to stop me buying it… although it may lead to a few grudging stares.

Well enough about me. what do you think of the cover?

Top 10 Fairy-Tale Retellings

Dark_Fairy_Tale_by_angelgaia

It has been brought to my Attention that in is Fairy Tale Fortnight, as a lover of all things fairy-tale I feel it is only right to commemorate with a top 10

Now you may notice there are no Cinderella’s included in this list this is not because I don’t like Cinderella (although miss original insta-love can annoy me, most retellings fix her up) but merely because there are so many that soon she will have her own post Top 10 Cinderellas (although this is a very specific field so feel free to suggest your favourites) also I am going to try and maintain some variety so I am going to try and keep it to 1 per fairy-tale as such you may not recognise all the fairy-tales but I believe you will enjoy them regardless . …on that note the more observant of you may notice that the majority of these come from the same series of books, although they are by different authors. this is because this series (or set rather as they don’t continue) is amazing (Read it)

10 Mermaid: A Twist on the Classic Tale ~ Carolyn Turgeon

Mermaid

Retelling of: The Little Mermaid

Time Period/Location: Once upon a time in a land far far away.

Info: In this original take of the little mermaid a princess and a mermaid vie for a prince’s heart. told from bot the mermaid’s and princess’s POV this heartbreaking story see’s two girls risk everything for something they want, something only one of them can have.

9 Golden ~ Cameron Dokey

gold

Retelling of: Rapunzel

Time Period/Location: Once upon a time in a land far far away.

Info: when a man steals Rapunzel (a type of parsley) from an enchantress’s garden to fulfil his vein and pregnant wife’s craving he is caught. the enchantress then proceeds to make a bargain with the wife, all the rapunzel she wants but in payment if she could not look at her child with love the enchantress would claim her. when the babe is born bald with no hope of growing hair the mother hands over the babe to the witch. this is a very unique take on the tale but the tale is still there.

8 Beauty Sleep ~ Cameron Dokey

BS

Retelling of: Sleeping Beauty

Time Period/Location: Once upon a time in a land far far away.

Info: The Princess Aurore was cursed as a baby that at the age of sixteen she would prick her finger and sleep for 100 years when she will be awakened by the kiss of a prince. when she discovers that this cure will not just harm her but is also harming her kingdom she runs away into the enchanted woods with the thought to protect her people. in the forest she comes across a young prince searching for a enchanted princess in the very center of the woods for it is his destiny to wake her with a kiss.

7 Water song ~ Suzanne Weyn,

water

Retelling of: Frog Prince

Time Period/Location: WWI Belgium

Info: While war rages Emma has yet to truly experience its effects. when she and her mother travel to the family estate in Belgium they never imagined they would be anything but safe but when her mother is killed in an air raid Emma soon finds herself all alone in the center of a war. when the enemy chooses her house as a headquarters for their war effort Emma finds herself protecting an American soldier, she found nearly dead in the bottom of her well by claiming him as her husband.

Sunlight and Shadow ~ Cameron Dokey

 S&S

Retelling of: The Magic Flute

Time Period/Location: Once upon a time in a land far far away.

Info: Mina Is the daughter of the Queen of the night and the king of the day. a prophecy states that she will change the balance. she is raised by her mother with the knowledge that come her 16th birthday she would go to live with her father. but on the eve of her birthday her father kidnaps her and she is thrust into her fathers world. with an adopted sister that he always had time for, and the promise that she would marry her fathers knight of day to sway the prophecy in his favour. but somewhere far away she hears the bells that call to her heart.

5 Beastly ~ Alex Flinn

book-cover-beastly-film-20558308-350-500

Retelling of: Beauty and the Beast

Time Period/Location: Modern Day New York

Info: Kyle Kingsbury had everything you could want. he was rich, popular, and the perfect good looks. His cruelty attracts the attention of a witch who turns him into a beast. he has one reprieve however, one chance. his one act of kindness (the simple gift of a rose) has bought him 2 years, 2 years to find someone he can love, and who he loves in return. but who can love a beast?

4 Crimson Thread ~ Suzanne Weyn 

TCT

Retelling of: Rumpelstiltskin

Time Period/Location: 1880’s New York

Info: Bertie has just arrived in New York from her home in Ireland. for the “land of opportunity” but they struggle to get enough food on the table, Bertie is lucky enough to get a job as a seamstress for textile tycoon J. P. Wellington. everything is fine until Wellington finds his business going down hill. Bertie’s father claims she can save them being such a good seamstress she can “practically spin straw into gold”. luckily in her short time in America she has made a few friends. including a man who goes by the name of Ray Stalls, who just happens to be able to turn the drab fabric into brilliant shining dresses. all that is left is the small matter of payment.

3 Ice ~ Sarah Beth Durst

6321845

Retelling of: East of the Sun, West of the Moon

Time Period/Location: Modern Day Arctic research station

Info: as a little girl Cassie’s grandmother told her about her mother who made a deal with the polar bear king and was swept away to the ends of the earth. now that she is older she knows that was just her grandmothers way of saying she had died. that is until her 18th birthday when the Polar bear king comes for her. her mother is alive and he will rescue her, if only Cassie would be his wife.

2 Violet Eyes ~ Debbie Viguié

Veye

Retelling of: The Princess and the Pea

Time Period/Location: Once upon a time in a land far far away.

Info: when the prince stumbles into her farm it is love at first sight for Violet. the prince loves her too but he knows he will not get to marry for love. for his parents are convinced that he shall marry the perfect princess. the fairest, daintiest, most delicate princess, a competition that Violet as a farm girl has no chance of winning. but she is not about to let that stand in her way of true love.

1 Snow ~ Tracy Lynn

snow

Retelling of: Snow White

Time Period/Location: Industrial Revolution England

Info: this sticks to all the basics of Snow white… until suddenly it doesn’t. Jessica is the beautiful duchess who was raised by servants after her mothers death and fathers heartbreak. when her remarries a beautiful (and intelligent) woman while at first her new stepmother seems to want the best for her (if she is not a little strict) as Jessica grows older and more beautiful her stepmother grows jealous until fearing for her life Jessica escapes to London, and that is where the story really begins.

Just One Wish

Just One Wish ~ Janette Rallison

JOW

Rating 4 stars

Blurb

Seventeen-year-old Annika Truman knows about the power of positive thinking. With a little brother who has cancer, it’s all she ever hears about. And in order to help Jeremy, she will go to the ends of the earth (or at least as far as Hollywood) to help him believe he can survive his upcoming surgery.

But Annika’s plan to convince Jeremy that a magic genie will grant him any wish throws her a curveball when he unexpectedly wishes that his television idol would visit him. Annika suddenly finds herself in the desperate predicament of getting access to a hunky star actor and convincing him to come home with her. Piece of cake, right?

Review

When I opened this book I was expecting a crappy little book (that I admit I would have probably guiltily enjoyed) however this book (particularly as you got towards the end) was actually quite beautiful. It had its moments where it was exactly what I thought it would be but then, quite out of the blue it would have a moment and I would be laughing, crying or just getting those delightful warm and fuzzies. Steve had the most hilarious voice and I really connected with Annika. The story Annika tells to her brother was the beautifully clever touch that strings it all together. This may only be a short book but it is one I will remember.

Memorable Quotes

“Perhaps I wasn’t going crazy after all.  Perhaps I was just becoming a writer.”

“I never said you were supposed to be a jailer, i only said a normal person would have questioned why someone would create a decoy nun and then crawl out the window.” 

“I will not go on, I thought.  I won’t.  I will throw my soul to the wind and blow into a thousand pieces.  I will wash up on a shore somewhere like bleached and broken driftwood. I will dry out in the sun until I-and any gift I ever had-shrivel into the sand.”   

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