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By Midnight by Mia James

By Midnight by Mia James (review copy) - April Dunne is not impressed. She's had to move from Edinburgh to Highgate, London, with her parents. She's left her friends - and her entire life - behind. She has to start at a new school and, worst of all, now she's stuck in a creepy old dump of a house which doesn't even have proper mobile phone reception. Ravenwood, her new school, is a prestigious academy for gifted (financially or academically) students - and the only place her parents could find her a place, in the middle of term, in the middle of London, on incredibly short notice. So she's stuck with the super-rich, and the super-smart ...and trying to fit in is when the rest of the students seem to be more glamorous, smarter, or more talented than she is, is more than tough. It's intimidating and isolating, even when she finds a friend in the conspiracy-theorist Caro Jackson - and perhaps finds something more than friendship in the gorgeous, mysterious Gabriel Swift.

But there's more going on at Ravenwood than meets the eye. Practical jokes on new students are normal, but when Gabriel saves her from...something...in the Highgate Cemetery, and then she discovers that a murder took place, just yards away from where she had been standing, April has to wonder if something more sinister is going on.

...and whether or not she's going to live through it... From Amazon UK

I love me some vampires, yes I do! So for the simply fact that By Midnight had vampires in it was a definite plus in it's favour for me reading it. However, I am not a fan of books where people are popular and rich and focus all their attention on either how they look or putting others down. From the blurb above, I assumed that's what I would find, among other things, in this book, and it did put me off for a while - hence the fact that I've only just read it. But I picked it up recently when trying to decide what to read next, and vampires and murders and cememtries... well, my interest was piqued enough to know now was the time to give it a go.

By Midnight is a really good stry, but it's not what I expected. I know it's a mystery, but the fact that it's about vampires, I expected a bit more of the supernatural element. You know, maybe April stumbling across some vampires being vampish and drinking blood or being extra strong or something, but there isn't much of anything along those lines in the book until much later on. It really is a mystery. April doesn't find out the existance of vampires by accident, but through trying to work out who's behind various murders. Through clues, and books, and talking to people, and going about things the old fashioned way.

I have to say, the research part of the book was just awesome! This book is loosely based on actual real life legends of the Highgate Vamire, people actually believed there was one in Highgate Cemetary, which features hugely in this book. Real places with real "supernatural" history are the settings for this story, which just add credibility to this story which is just wonderful. I actually want to go visit Highgate Cemetary now because it sounds wonderful. But I also love the research April does herself into vampires; the old victorian books she reads that are just full of brilliant myths and folklore, and, oooh, I want those books! It was just fascinating!

The mythology James has created for her story is just wonderful, but highly intriguing. There is still a big mystery, and the mechanics of the vampire society, if you will - or what we know of it so far - is just so interesting. There's a lot of conspiracies going on, and because of this I can't tell you much more, but I can't wait to find out more about vampires as a whole, and the specifics that April is interested in in the later books.

Thankfully, there wasn't too much queen bee bitching going on to wind me up, but there were elements of By Midnight that did annoy me. April is 16 and starting her A-Levels. I remember being that age, and the people around me. April was sometimes too immature and shallow for her age, and I just wanted to shake her and yell at her to grow up. She could be so fickle, swayed too easily by good looks. And when she had an inkling as to what was going on, she would jump back and forth over whether she was right or wrong, without actually listning to what would give her the answers she would need to know either way. She really wound me up, and I have to say, I'm not her biggest fan.

But still, the story was really, really intriguing, and I'm really looking forward to reading the sequel Darkness Falls. A pretty good book!

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Hunt the Moon by Karen Chance

Hunt the Moon by Karen Chance (Review Copy) - WARNING! I cannot review this book without spoiling the previous books in the series. If you plan on reading the Cassie Palmer series and don't want it spoiled for you, don't read any further.

Cassandra Palmer recently defeated a god, which you'd think would buy a girl a little time off.

But when your job is being Pythia - the world's chief clairvoyant - you don't get a lot of R&R. Cassie is busier than ever, discovering her power, figuring out her complicated relationship with enigmatic and sexy vampire Mircea, and preparing for her upcoming coronation.

But someone is dead set against Cassie being Pythia, and will go to any lengths to stop the coronation ceremony from happening - including making sure that Cassie is never born.

Now, Cassie has to save herself - and the world, if she can find the time ... From Amazon UK

Oh. My. God! I am completely reeling after finishing this book! Regular readers of my blog will know by now how big a fan of Karen Chance's novels I am, so it will be no surprise to hear I was more than a little excited to read Hunt the Moon. But, despite the fact that Chance is a genius and always, always, surprises and wows me more than words can say, I would never have expected to be blown away to such a level as I was when I had finished reading.

I don't even really know where to begin. So much happens in Hunt the Moon, like in the others, it's hard to know what to say without spoiling the book. There is the usual chaos that follows Cassie where ever she goes, with more action than you can shake a stick at - yet it all flows beautifully together to create a story that's just unbelievable. In every review of a novel by Chance, I always go on about howbrilliant the action is, but there isn't really much more to add - but it all still stands. Just incredible.

There is a new element in this book though; questions regarding the Norse and Greek myths - or at least where they overlap. We saw this a little witht he introduction and demise of Apollo previously, but more comes into it in this book. If there was Apollo, and all those other gods held back by the ouroboros spell, then what else that is considered myth - even in Cassie's world - is actually real? And what does that mean for Cassie? It's siply fascinating, and Chance has put so much research inot the myths and worked them seemlessly into her book. It's just brilliant.

We find out a lot more about the pasts of both Mircea and Pritkin, - one based in actual history, the other pure imagination, both completely believavble. It's this combination of fact and fiction that make Chance's novels that more credible. We're not just told their histories for the sake of it though, there is a point, as there always is, in everything in these books. It gives insight into who these people are and what they've been through, and explains why deicions hae been made or actions taken in the past, in the present, and they may be made or taken in the future. It's more jigsaw pieces that make the whole person for both characters, but also ad to the bigger picture of the story.

The romance between Cassie and Mircea goes up a notch in this book. Not only do they sizzle like they always do, but there is real emotion that comes through. But there is another person on the outside who is a "will they? won't they?" love interest that Cassie simply doesn't see. There have been hints in the previous books and a fair few more in this, and I just wish Cassie would open her eyes, and Pritkin would open his mouth and just say it! Actually, "hints" is the wrong word for this book because it's so obvious! And I think I might prefer PRitkin to Mircea a bit. I really do like him!

And then there's the ending. Oh my god, the ending! The ending that had me shouting at the book in anger and denial, the ending that had me on the verge of tears, the ending that had me fall in love just a little bit. The ending that has probably had a bigger emotional impact on me than any other urban fantasy has had before, and has me literally desperate for he next book in the series, on which I can find no info about! I think I might have actually got a little too emotionally involved in this series, because I would be quite willing to jump into it's pages and try and be a hero(ine).

The book is the best in the series sp far, it's completely amazing, and Chance fans simply cannot miss out on it. It's jaw-droppingly good!

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Blood Bound Review by Rachel Vincent

Blood Bound by Rachel Vincent (review copy) - They say blood is thicker than water. They have no idea. As a blood tracker, Liv is extremely powerful. And in a world where power is a commodity that can get you killed, Liv s learnt to survive by her own rules. Rule number one? Trust no one. But when a friend's daughter goes missing, Liv is bound by a potent magical oath. She can't rest until the child is safe. And that means trusting her dangerous ex, Cam. A sinister prophecy tells that she and Cam will be the death of each other, yet Liv's tired of being a slave to destiny. She's ready to play the forces controlling her world at their own game. No matter what the cost. From Amazon UK

Rachel Vincent is one of my favourite auhors, so when the Shifters series finished, I was really quite sad that it had com to an end, but really excited to see what she would come up with next in the Unbound series. I threw myself into the story, and I was absolutely amazed!

Blood Bound is nothing at all like the Shifters series, as is right, but as you read further into the story, you pick up things that are...not similar, but very Vincent. Like the complexity of of the world's she builds. With the Shifters, it was in the politics of the werecats. With Unbound, it's with the Skills the characters have - the ability to track someone by their name or their blood, the ability bind oaths so that the one who took it absolutely has to carry out what they promised, people who can walk into one shadow and out another somewhere completely different, and so on. There are so many! But with binded oaths... wow. They cause pain that can lead to the shut down of your body if you try to go against the binding, they can stop you from actually speaking about something, and, if your oath is the right kind, it can make you do absolutely everything you are told to by the person you're bound to. Complicated huh? So when people of various Skills and bound to various people are brought together on a mission... well, things can get a little tricky. And I cannot tell you just how complex it is, and how much detail goes into it, it's just brilliant!

There is your fair share of action in Blood Bound - where it kind of puts me in mind of other urban fantasies I love; The Cassie Palmer series and Dorina Basarab series, both by Karen Chance, and the Night Huntress series by Jeaniene Frost - and it's edge of your seat exciting! But there's also the planning, the discussing, the working things out - the revelations and the strategising, basically, and it's just brilliant! This is where Vincent shines, in my opinion, because it's all in the detail! And there is no detail too small, every little thing is a jigsaw piece to the puzzle of the bigger picture, and it's just incredible seeing it all fall into place! I am seriously in awe of Vincent's ability to have so much that so complicated, but have it work and make completely sense! It's unbelievable!

Blood Bound is also a lot darker. There are characters that are absolutely disgusting, gangsters who care very little for anyone, who will go to any lengths to get what they want - whatever they want, and, my god, it's really awful. There are characters in this book I would quite like to see die a very brutal death, that's really drawn out. They just... oh, they make me sick.

This time round, Vincent has gone for a dual narrative in that Liv and Cam both tell the story. It was really interesting to see their relationship develop through both their eyes, yet to see what one doesn't know about the other and sometimes we, the readers, only get hints at until later. It was awesome! And I think I would say Vincent has made a step up on the romance side of things too. The love they feel for each other is just so strong, it's massive, but there are other things in their way, and it's just a little heart breaking to read, and seeing them trying to fight all sorts of obstacles. It was really moving.

What was really, really nice in this story was mother-daughter part of it, where a main character, Anne, has a young child and is absolutely terrified for them. That's the type of emotion we don't see a lot of in urban fantasy. Ok, so the child isn't Liv's, so we don't have the direct narration of the mother in her turmoil, but even getting it second hand is just so powerful! It was really lovely and really upsetting at the same time. There really should be more of it in urban fantasy.

Blood Bound is an absolutely fantastic book, and with the ending, I am dying for Shadow Bound! Is it asgood as the Shifters series? That's not a question I can answer, because they're nothing alike, but Blood Bound is just fantastic! A must read for Vincent fans! Why? Because Rachel Vincent has still got it!

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Bloodlines by Richelle Mead

Bloodlines by Richelle Mead (review copy) - WARNING! I cannot review this book without spoilingthe Vampire Academy series. Do not read any further if you haven't read the VA series and don't want it spoiled for you.

Sydney protects vampire secrets - and human lives.

Sydney belongs to a secret group who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the world of humans and vampires.

But when Sydney is torn from her bed in the middle of the night, she fears she's still being punished for her complicated alliance with dhampir Rose Hathaway. What unfolds is far worse. The sister of Moroi queen Lissa Dragomir is in mortal danger, and goes into hiding. Now Sydney must act as her protector.

The last thing Sydney wants is to be accused of sympathizing with vampires. And now she has to live with one... From Amazon UK

I am a seriously huge fan of Richelle Mead's Vampire Academy series, huge! I loved how the series ended, but was sad it was over, and sad for some of the characters. So when I heard that there wa going to be a spin-off series, with Sydney, Rose's Alchemist friend, I was over the moon! More awesomeness from the world! And once I had the books in my hands and opened the first page... well, I didn't stop reading until it was finished. Amazing!

I lapped the book up! However, although I read it in one day, I did have to get used to the difference. This is Sydney's story, not Rose's, and she's not as strong willed and angry as Rose can be, so although there were emotional highs and lows, it was a little less to do with immediate danger, and more to do with Sydnety's dislikes of certain people, worrying that she will fail, and going out of her mind trying to follow rules yet try to keep everyone happy - despite the fact hanging out with vampires isn't her favourite pasttime. Even so there is a big difference between the characters of Rose and Sydney, and their priorities - which makes the stories different - Bloodlines was still an amazing story!

I found it really fascinating finding out more about Sydney's life, and the role of Alchemists, and all the tricks they have up their sleaves. It's just so interesting to seethe science that they're work is based on. It's quite refreshing to have science play a bigger part in a world of myths. Yes, there's is another YA vampire series where there is a scientist, but it's different with Bloodlines. This is chemistry, mixing things together to get what you need. It's just a strange but cool way of separating the moroi from the alchemists - one used magic, one uses real, physical science. I just found the contrast really interesting.

But the science isn't the main focus, that is keeping Jill safe, and to do so, she hasn't come on her own. As well as Jill, we also get Eddie and, hurrah, Adrian! There are cameo appearances of some of the other characters we know, including Rose, but Sydney, Jill, Eddie and Adrian are the main four we stick with. Jill is still a young, teenage Moroi girl, and wants to have a teenage life, but she's having enourmous trouble fitting in, is seriously underconfident, and feels that no-one relly cares about her, they just want to keep Lissa, who is now the Queen, safe - on top of trying to get used to the fact that they're related. Eddie is Jill's guardian, and is super vigilant, but still the nice guy we know from the previous series. And Adrian is his usual laid-back, snarky self, but he's also hurting a lot over wht happened with Rose. Despite this, I am so happy Adrian is back, because I absolutely love him! He just cracks me up!

Sydney isn't a guardian, so there's less fighting in this book that we're used to, but she is smart, so where it's a battle of the fists and stakes with Rose, it's a battle of the minds with Sydney, and whether she can out-smart those that need out-smarting. There is, however, a big, and quite disturbing, fight scene. Oooh, it was good! And worrying - as I said, Sydney isn't a guardian.

Now, I don't knbow if it's because I have read all the previous books and therefore know the signs, or just jknow the world enough, but two out of the three major plot revelations I guessed fairly early on. I don't know if it will be the same for other reasons, but they both just semed fairly obvious to me. That doesn't take away from how good the book is though; just because I already knew what these revelations would be, I didn't know how the characters would find out, what that would mean, and the consequences of finding them, so it was still really good watching the others figure things out. The third I had half right, I just didn't know the reasons for it. But I did shout at my book at least once saying, "Come one! It's so obvious!..." with frustration that the characters weren't as quick on the up-take as I had been. Still, as I said, it didn't make the book any less enjoyable.

In all honesty, Bloodlines isn't as heart-pumping exciting as the Vampire Academy series, but it's amazing nonetheless. It is the first book, so ground work is laid, and with a few hints throughout the novel make me believe that the book will get the whomp we've come to love. There are a fair few unanswered questions that I'm highly intrigued about! And the stirrings of possible feelings that you know are just going to cause all kinds of complications! Oh, I love it! I am just so excited to read the next novel, The Golden Lily, when it comes out next year. The wait makes me wish I hadn't read Bloodlines in one day! It will most definitely be worth the wait though! Mead has done it again, an amazingf start to what I can tell is going to be a brilliant series! I just have to get my hands on her adult series now!

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Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling - WARNING! I am reviewing the Harry Potter ooks with the idea that those who read my reviews have read the books. There will be spoilers. If you haven't read Half-Blood Prince, read no further.

'In a brief statement on Friday night, Minister for Magic Cornelius Fudge confirmed that He Who Must Not Be Named has returned to this country and is once more active. "It is with great regret that I must confirm that the wizard styling himself Lord - well, you know who I mean - is alive and among us again," said Fudge.' These dramatic words appeared in the final pages of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. In the midst of this battle of good and evil, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince takes up the story of Harry Potter's sixth year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, with Voldemort's power and followers increasing day by day... From Amazon UK

The excitement of the previous books continues in Half-Blood Prince. Not only does the wizarding community now know for definate that Lord Voldemort is back, but us readers know thisis the sixth book, that there is one book left, and after finding out at the end of the last book about the prophecy, the steaks are higher.

I absolutely loved getting to look at all the memories that show Voldemort's history in Harry's lessons with Dumbledore. It makes Voldemort seem more human, which makes it even more disturbing that he became what he did. I can't help but feel slightly sorry for him because of the events that led up to is birth and left him parentless, but god, he was vile!

The whole idea of Voldemort's horcruxes is just genius, because it's so complicated and you realise just how hard it will be to defeat him, and he great mission that it will be to find and destroy them all. It just goes to show, despite the fact that he is completely beyond evil, Voldemort is quite clever, even if disgustingly so. The one thing I didn't understand completely was Dumbledore's explanation of how Nagini is a horcrux. I can understand that she is, but Dumbledore said that Voldemort used her to kill an old man - which we saw at the beginning of Goblet of Fire - and that5 was the death, that splitting of his soul, that he used to make her a horcrux. But I don't understand how, by Nagini killing that man would split Voldemort's soul. Yes she did it on his orders, but he didn't actually kill him himself, so that confused me a little.

And then there is the death of Dumbledore. Oh, it's so sad! Even now, years after first reading this book, I still get all upset. I remember how I felt about Snape the first time I read it. Although I despised him with a passion along with Harry, I did kind of go along with the idea that, well, Dumbledore trusts him, so he's just a bitte man taking it out on the only one he can, Harry. But then you read about the Unforgivable Vow, and you start to wonder... and when you realise that Malfoy has to kill Dumbledore, and that's what Snape vowed to do in his stead if MAlfoy couldn't, and I was completely shocked. And when he does... oh, the hatred! Even I felt betrayed, because I trusted him even if Harry didn't. Oooh, it was awful! And Dumbledore's funeral, and Fawkes' song! So, so sad! And Harry without the last person he counted on, he looked up, he believed would keep everyone, including him, safe.

And then Harry has to split up with Ginny after only just getting with her! I was so happy they got together, nd then he has to leave her, it's so sad! Though I would have liked to have seen more of them together anyway, I think that would have been really sweet.

Another brilliant book! I absolutely love this series!

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Blood Bound by Rachel Vincent!

Blood Bound, the first in Rachel vincent's new adult urban fantasy Unbound series is released today! You have absolutely no idea how excited I am to read this! I am a HUGE Rachel Vincent fan, and I adored herShifters series, so I'm extremely looking forward to reading this new adult series! Keep reading for more info and for links to buy!

Blood Bound by Rachel VincentBlood Bound by Rachel Vincent - By blood, by word, by magic…

Most can’t touch the power. But Liv Warren is special— a paranormal tracker who follows the scent of blood.

Liv makes her own rules, and the most important one is trust no one.

But when her friend’s daughter goes missing, Liv has no choice but to find the girl. Thanks to a childhood oath, Liv can’t rest until the child is home safe. But that means trusting Cam Caballero, the former lover forbidden to her.

Bound by oath and lost in desire for a man she cannot have, Liv is racing to save the child from a dark criminal underworld where secrets, lies, trauma and danger lurk around every corner…every touch…every kiss.

And more blood will be spilled before it’s over…

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Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling - WARNING! I am reviewing the Harry Potter ooks with the idea that those who read my reviews have read the books. There will be spoilers. If you haven't read Order of the Phoenix, read no further.

Dumbledore lowered his hands and surveyed Harry through his half-moon glasses. 'It is time,' he said, 'for me to tell you what I should have told you five years ago, Harry. Please sit down. I am going to tell you everything.' Harry Potter is due to start his fifth year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizadry. He is desperate to get back to school and find out why his friends Ron and Hermione have been so secretive all summer. However, what Harry is about to discover in his new year at Hogwarts will turn his whole world upside down ...But before he even gets to school, Harry has an unexpected and frightening encounter with two Dementors, has to face a court hearing at the Ministry of Magic and has been escorted on a night-time broomstick ride to the secret headquarters of a mysterious group called 'The Order of the Phoenix'. And that is just the start. A gripping and electrifying novel, full of suspense, secrets, and - of course - magic. From Amazon UK

I absolutely lov this book because I have such a terrible time emotionally reading it. Hary is so, so angry all the way through this book, on the verge of completely blowing his top, and I find it quite understandable. Then he gets attacked by Dementors, expelled, unexpelled, has to go to a hearing, has to have Defence Against the Dark Arts classes with Umbridge, see Arthur Weasley attacked by him-as-snake, and then has to face Death Eaters in the Department of Mysteries, watch Sirius die, face Voldemort, then find out he's the only one who can defeat Voldemort, or vice versa. Pretty bad year for him - and a hard reading experience for me.

Yet I find it a completely brilliant book! Oh how I hate Umbridge, but I love her too, she's just so vile! She's completely wonderful as a villian, so disturbing in her ruthlessness. But it's because of her that the DA is started, and how wonderful are those secret classes? Wouldn't you just love to go to them?! I remember being completely disgusted by Umbridge when I first read this book, but then completely thrilled to read about the DA!

Not only that, but I was utterly disturbed, right along with Harry, when he attacks Mr Weasley from inside the snake's head. We know it wasn't really him, but at that time... the thought that he could have been possessed! This book is just creepy, on a completely different level to the creepiness of Prisoner of Azkaban. Where PoA frightens by being eerie, Order of the Phoenix frightens by being disturbing and shocking, and there's something to shock us further around every corner. It's just brilliant.

I love the big batte in the Department of Mysteries. How wonderful for the characters we love to actually fight along with Harry! And how badly it goes, it's just so suspenceful! What Im so excited for now is when Pottermore is up and running, and it gets round to Order of the Phoenix and we can find out more about the Departments of Mysteries. When Fudge turns up at the Ministry after Dumbledore has duelled with Voldemort, Dumbledore refers to the room with the veiled archway as the Death Chamber, and says later that the Depeartment of Mysteries is for study and that death, human intelligence and the forces of nature - along with another force in a locked room he doesn't name but from his description I assume is love. So I guess the Unspeakables study death in the Death Chamber, and Human Intelligence in the brain room, and forces of nature possible in the time room, maybe, but I want to know more! I want to know why they study thm, and what they've found out, and what exactly is on the other side of the veil! I pressume "the other side", seems fitting, but I want to know for sure, and I am hoping that Pottermore will tell us the secrets of the Department of Mysteries!

One shining light in the whole book is the introduction of Luna Lovegood, one of my favourite characters! She's just so dreamlike and cool, and I just love her! However, there is the death of Sirius, which is just so sad, even though I've read it for the umpteenth time. How I cried when I first read of his death, that Harry's only remaining loving family, his only chance of escape from the Dursleys - though we discover at the endof this book, Harry could never excape them until he is of age due to the charm to do with Harry's blood - has gone... it's devastating. Just so, so sad.

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Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter is midway through his training as a wizard and his coming of age. Harry wants to get away from the pernicious Dursleys and go to the International Quidditch Cup. He wants to find out about the mysterious event that's supposed to take place at Hogwarts this year, an event involving two other rival schools of magic, and a competition that hasn't happened for a hundred years. He wants to be a normal, fourteen-year-old wizard. But unfortunately for Harry Potter, he's not normal - even by wizarding standards. And in his case, different can be deadly. From Amazon US

Prisoner of Azkaban is the book where things start to get pretty exciting because of how dark it gets. Goblet of Fire is the book where things get even more exciting because it's just so much fun! I know it's generally not so great because Harry's been put into the Triwizard Tournament against his will and it's quite dangerous for him, but I just find all the tasks just so much fun to read! You have no idea how much I want to be a student of Hogwarts when I read this book! Of course, I want to be a student of Hogwarts whenever I read a Harry Potter novel, but especially with this one. I seriously cannot help the grin that comes across my face when I'm reading this book.

But then the book shifts. To me, it feels like there are three very distinct parts of the book. It's all fun and exciting while the tournament is happening, but once the Harry and Cedric are transported to the cemetery where Voldemort returns it shifts and becomes even darker than Prisoner of Azkaban. I love Voldemort's long talk before he and Harry start fighting. So much is explained! But it also shows just how evil he really is, how he taunts him. There's the wonderful connecting wands thing, and then it shifts again once Harry returns to Hogwarts. Just when you thought everything was going to be ok and Harry will be safe, then bam! Moody isn't Moody! It's just wonderful! I love each section, it just takes the story further, and keeps you on your toes. I love it!

I know he isn't actually Moody, but I can't help but love Moody anyway. If you think about it, he is actually trying to act how Moody would act, so it's pretty similar, and he's just awesome. He's mental, yet is completely for making sure everyone knows how to defend themselves, and he's just great. And who can forget Malfoy, the amazing bouncing ferret? Just classic.

This book also takes a step up from the others because this is the first book we actually see someone die. And not just one person either; Harry dreams Frank, the Riddle House's gardener’s death as well as Cedric's. There's a third death that happens that we don't see, that of Mr Crouch, but still, that's three deaths that happen in one book, where there weren't any deaths of those on the right side in previous books. It's a turning point both for Harry and for the reader. People are actually dying now, the threat of Voldemort means so much more.; The only that bothers me is that in Order of the Phoenix, when Harry arrives at Hogwar's he sees the Theastrals because he's witnessed death, yet in Goblet of Fire, it actually says he waits with the others for the carriages pulled by invisible horses - why couldn't he see them then? Little plot hole.

Anyway, this book is just brilliant, and might actually be my favourite of the whole series. I'll let you know if that's still true as I continue reading the series.

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Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter is a wizard. He is in his third year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. It's always a relief after summer with the Dursleys, however, Harry doesn't realise that this year will be just as eventful as the last two! The atmosphere at Hogwarts is tense. There's an escaped mass murderer on the loose, even the Muggles have been warned. The sinister prison guards of Azkaban have been called in to guard the school and Harry, Ron and Hermione rapidly discover why all witches and wizards live in fear of being sent to Azkaban. Lessons, however, must go on and there are lots of new subjects in third year - Care of Magical Creatures and Divination among others. Plus the delights of Hogsmeade, the only village in the UK entirely populated by the magical community. From Amazon UK

Words will never be able to describe how much I love this book! This is the book where the series really takes a strong turning point for me. Harry has faced danger in the past, but not in such a huge scale.

There are the Dementors, which, even now, as an adult, I find really creepy. Harry hear's his parents being murdered by Voldemort whenever the Dementors are around. Prisoner Sirius Black, believed to be Voldemort's right-hand man when he was at his full power, has broken out of prison with the sole purpose of going to Hogwarts to commit murder. Everyone is terrified. All of which excites me and has me glued to the book!

The Dementors have got to be one of the best "creatures" in this series. As Lupin says when he and Harry discuss what the Boggart would turn into when it saw Harry, Harry fears fear itself. That's what the Demetors are, the embodiment of fear, fear personified. You never really know what they look like, happiness evaporates, and they bring terribly bad weather with them. What could be worse? It's the last one that I really like, the weather. Like the Dementors cause physical pathetic fallacy (for those who don't know, pathetic fallacy is a literary device in which the weather reflects the mood of the characters). It's not coincidence that the weather is fitting when the Dementors are around, the actually cause it. So clever! I love it! And how cool is it that the thing that will help most after being in the presence of a Dementor is chocolate? All those endorphins it releases, I imagine!

I also love Lupin. Lupin is just amazing! He is fun, he is kind, he's just awesome! Who doesn't want to have Defence Against the Dark Arts classes with Lupin?! They sound like the best lessons ever! He also brings some humour to the book with his Boggart lesson - Snape in women's clothing? Just brilliant! But so does Professor Trelawney. That women is completely barking, but I love her for it. And then you have Sirius, who turns out to be the most amazing person in the world, because he's Harry's chance of a completely happy life. That conversation when Sirius offers to take Harry in is one of the most emotional parts of the series, because for a few glorious minutes, Harry believes he will have a proper, loving family... and then it's taken away from him. So sad!

What I haven't mentioned in any of my previous reviews is Rowling's writing, but that's because it's effect is more obvious in this book. It's dark, it's scary, it's really quite creepy and at times very dangerous, yet as I turn every page, the magic Rowling weaves with her words is like warmth. I can't explain it any other way. No matter what's happening in the books, whenever I read a Harry Potter book, I am filled with warmth. They're also gold. I am unable to put into words what I mean by gold, but Rowling's novels are just warmth and gold, and reading them feels like coming home.

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Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter is a wizard. He is in his second year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Little does he know that this year will be just as eventful as the last ...even getting there is an adventure in itself! The three firm friends, Harry, Ron and Hermione, are soon immersed in the daily round of Potions, Herbology, Charms, Defence Against the Dark Arts, and Quidditch. But then horrible and mysterious things begin to happen. Harry keeps hearing strange voices, sinister and dark messages appear on the wall, and then Ron's sister Ginny disappears... From Amazon UK

Another re-read, and another just brilliant book! I had forgotten just how funny this book is! Dobby is just absolutely amazing, and I want him as my own little free house-elf! Isn't he just the cutest thing?! I love him! He's so funny and sweet, and though he's not human, I could quite easily adopt him. I also love Moaning Myrtle, how sensitive she is is just too funny. I always used to hate Gilderoy Lockhart because he just made such a mess of everything and was so completely arrogant. But reading this book as an adult, I have to say I think he was one of my favourite characters. He is just so funny, bumbling along and not having any clue! When the movie first came out, because I had built such strong images in my head of who these characters are, I was disappointed with Kenneth Branagh getting the role. However, I have wached the film recently as well as reading the book, and I hae to say, he is absolutely spot on! Just brilliant!

That's one thing I have noticed quite a bit as I've been re-reading the series - I'm imagining a lot of the cast members as the characters instead what I originally imagined when I read the books. Maggie Smith is McGonagall, Warick Davis is Flitwick (the version in the first lot of movies, not the new version), Dobby looks like he does in the movies, and even sometimes Robbie Coltrane is Hagrid! There is a story my Dad delights in telling anyone who will listen; that the first time I saw Philosopher's Stone, as soon as we first see Hagrid, I immediate said to my Dad, "He doesn't look like that!" Ooo, the imagination of a child. But as I re-read the books now, I still sometimes see a giant clean shaven biker with long greasy hair in a leather jacket that talks more cockney than farmer. Blame the flying motorbike he rides at the beginning of Philosopher's Stone.

But back to the book. Each book gts a little darker, and although humourous, Chamber of Secrets is no exception. Granted, it's not as dark as some of the later books - to be fair, nowhere near as dark as Prisoner of Azkaban, but it's the first time the life of someone who isn't one of the main three characters is in literal danger. Ginny. It takes it up a level. How bad is Voldemort, that he can actuall cause the death - or almost - of someone without actually being anywhere near, just through a memory? It's a little disturbing! And the strange voices Harry hears and no-one, not even Hermione, can explain it away... it's a little worrying! As I said a little earlier on, I did see the film recently, so when getting to the end of the book, it was a little anti-climatical. Why? Because the images you see on screen are remembered more easily than the images your brain creates, so I was expecting a lot more from the fight with the Basilisk, hen in fact, it's about 2-3 pages, if that. I do love the movies, but I think it's a little sad when a book you loved so much once is a little disappointing because of a movie. That's really not so great. I really need to shake off the movies as I re-read these books, because they are just fantastic, and I loved them long before the movies came along; I don't want them spoiling the reading experience for me anymore - the books as they are wowed me once upon a time, and they should do so now.

Before I finish, I just need to mention something I forgot to say in my review of Philosopher's Stone. J.K. Rowling is so clever! Having read all the books, and knowing how it ends, re-reading them, I notice all the little clues Rowling planted right earlier on. Hagrid talking about the security of Gringotts in PS, Nearly Headless Nick convincing Peeves to damage a cabinet - the Vanishing Cabinet - to get Harry out of trouble with Filch in CoS, Harry's discussion with Dumbledore at the end of CoS when he finds out Voldemort put a bit of him in Harry. There are so many other little hints and clues, some just one sentence now that end up being such a big deal later on. It's amazing! Rowling is just a genius!

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Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter is an ordinary boy who lives in a cupboard under the stairs at his Aunt Petunia and Uncle Vernon's house, which he thinks is normal for someone like him who's parents have been killed in a 'car crash'. He is bullied by them and his fat, spoilt cousin Dudley, and lives a very unremarkable life with only the odd hiccup (like his hair growing back overnight!) to cause him much to think about. That is until an owl turns up with a letter addressed to Harry and all hell breaks loose! He is literally rescued by a world where nothing is as it seems and magic lessons are the order of the day. Read and find out how Harry discovers his true heritage at Hogwarts School of Wizardry and Witchcraft, the reason behind his parents mysterious death, who is out to kill him, and how he uncovers the most amazing secret of all time, the fabled Philosopher's Stone! All this and muggles too. Now, what are they? From Amazon UK

Since watching the very last Harry Potter movie recently, I was bitten by the bug again and decided to re-read the series. It had been quite a few years since I last read Philosopher's Stone, as several years back I decided I prefered the latter books to the first ones and would start from them instead of from the beginning. So picking up the first book again after all these years was really nice!

There was so much I had forgotten about! Just how nasty the Dursleys were originally, Harry and Hermione getting caught after giving Norbert to Charlie's mates, the way the centaurs behaved in the forest, Snapes potion test underneath the trap door! Just so much was re-discovered, and I did go back to being the 11-year-old I was when I originally read this book. The wonder and the excitement all came rushing back.

What I did notice was how younng the writing style was, Harry is definitely a child. I am now reading Chamber of Secrets, and even in one school year, there is a noticeable difference. The language is less simple, and Harry is less self-absorbed - the business with his parents in the mirror didn't show him in the best light.

As I said earlier, I stopped reading the first few books quite a few years back, while I continued to re-read the others. What surprised me the most was how little actually happens. Obviously, the other books are quite long, so there'squite a lot of page time for different events, but I'd forgotten that little happened in the first compared to the latter. In that sense, it was slightly anticlimatical.

However, still a very enjoyable read, and I can still see why I and everyone else, loved this series so much! Completely absorbing!

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Dead Beautiful by Yvonne Woon

Dead Beautiful by Yvonne Woon (review copy) - Desire. Danger. Destiny. Little did I know that this is what I would find at Gottfried Academy. Coming from sunny California, the mist-shrouded Academy was a shock, with its strange customs, ancient curriculum and study of Latin - the language of the dead. Then I discovered that the school has more than one dark secret... I also discovered Dante. Intelligent, elusive and devastatingly gorgeous, most people can't decide whether they love, hate or fear him. All I know is that when we're together, I've never felt more alive - or more afraid. From Amazon UK

When I first heard about Dead Beautiful, I was really intrigued. Urban fantasy, as most of you know, is one of my favourite genres, and Dead Beautiful sounded right up my street. I was eager to read read it. What I didn' t expect was just how brilliant the story would be.

What I loved about this book was the skill at how Yvonne Woon told Renée's story, how the mythology is such an original take, we don't find out - and find it very difficult to work out - what is actually going on until Renée does. Literally, things will happen, new clues will arise, people will behave strangely, but there's nothing to make you think "this is about such and such a creature, hence all the XYZ things that are going on". I had no idea. There were no conventions of the normal urban fantasy/paranormal creatures about to have any hint. I was kept guessing until we find out. And what's brilliant is that we don't find out until several hundred pages in, yet there is still so much story, so much happening, you're gripped and continually turning the pages, despite having no clue where it could possibly be going. It's fantastic!

The only faults were I didn't have a lit-crush on Dante - I liked him, but he just simply didn't do it for me - and the romance didn't blow me away. It was a little luke warm for my tastes. It wasbelievable, but I didn't connect with it on an emotional level to be swept away by it. I was more interested in what was oing on than I was in the swooning, but that's just me personally.

And I'm sorry to say, I honestly cannot say much more. I can't think of what I could say without spoiling anything. I do love the school though, and all the classes, they sound so much fun! I wouldn't have minded going to a school like that. A fantastic book, and I seriously cannot wait to read the sequel!

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Passion by Lauren Kate

Passion by Lauren Kate (review copy) - WARNING! This is the third book in a series. I cannot review this book without spoiling the first two. Do not read any further if you plan on reading the first two and don't want them to be spoilt for you.

Before Luce and Daniel met at Sword & Cross, before they fought the Immortals, they had already lived many lives. And so Luce, desperate to unlock the curse that condemns their love, must revisit her past incarnations in order to understand her fate. Each century, each life, holds a different clue.

But Daniel is chasing her throughout the centuries before she has a chance to rewrite history.

How many deaths can one true love endure?

And can Luce and Daniel unlock their past in order to change their future? From Amazon UK

When I received Passion for review, I was so excited to read it! Finally, the third book! Now I could find out what happened after Lue stepped through the Announcer, and what would happen between her and Daniel! Though I was slightly worried; would Passion live up to the epicness that is Fallen and Torment? Too right it would!

Following Luce as she cisited her past lives was just so awesome! seeing all the different people she was, all the personalities, was just genius. We get to witness the good, the bad and the ugly of what it means to be involved in the curse, exactly what the curse does, and it's just so cool! Kate obviously did a whole lot of research for this novel, because there is just so much detail about the time period of each life - the way people spoke, how they dresse the culture, and the "history lessons" provided by Bill - one of the Scale, a kind of Announcer tour guide, Luce meets on her time-travels. Teh things Luce learns and discovers, and the things she realises she already knew as she sees each past incarnation of herself and the Daniel of the time is just beautiful! Seriously, it's so moving and touching, and just truely beautiful!

What's also great is that we get to see Daniel's side of things too as he tries to follow and catch up with Luce as she jumps through time. How much he cares for her and how much he'ssuffered over the centuries just pours out of the pages, you can just feel it. And it's through him that we realise just how dangerous it is for Luce to jump through her past lives - changing things could be disastrous, to both their lives. Either way though, it's Daniel, and I love him, so I was always going to enjoiy being in his head.

My god, the ending! It's not quite as big a cliffhanger as the previous two, but with the immense and mind blowing events that leas up to it, a massive "what happens immediately next?" inducing cliffhanger ending isn't necessary. Because the next ook is going to be huge. No, colossal! When you think about the events that lead up to the end of Passion, and with what Luce and Daniel will have to face in the next book? There is no doubt in my mind that it's going to be more awe-inspiring than anyone could possibly imagine.

A fair few of out questions are answered in this book, but I do believe there are still some left to answer. I still think there is more importance to Luce than we're told in Passion, from the behaviour of some of the other characters in previous books, and at some points on Passin. But it's nice to have that "Oh!" moment when you finally start to understand things.

If I was to criticise at all, I would have to say I would have liked Luce's time in her past lives to have been longer. I would have liked to have seen a bit more of Daneile and the various Lucinda incarnations together. However, if that was the case, Passion would have been incredibly long - it's already over 400 pages, so I can understand for the length and for the actual plot/Luce's purpose why the vists weren't as long as I would have liked.

I have asid before that no-one writes love like Kate does - not as beautifully, nor as breath taking - and that's still the case in Passion. There were moments where I could have just died over how beautiful amazing and real it all was, but because of the amount of page time spent in each past life, and because present day Luce and Daniel don't spend an awful amount of time together, these moments don't last very long It was a shame, but it was still absolutely beautiful, and despire it being fiction, it gives me hope.

Passion is a fantastic book! It's absolutely amazing and such a page turner! All Fallen fans should read it immediately. You do not want to miss out on this beilliant third installment. Now, wher did I leave Fallen and Torment? I believe I need to start reading this series all over again.

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Bite Club by Rachel Caine

Bite Club by Rachel Caine - WARNING! This is the tenth book in the Morganville Vampires series, and I can't review this book without spoiling the previous books. Do not read any further if you don't want the series spoiled for you.

Morganville, Texas is a quiet college town where humans and vampires live in relative peace. But lately a great deal of blood is being spilled - not in a feeding frenzy, but for someone's twisted idea of entertainment. After discovering that vampires populate Morganville - and surviving a number of adventures with her new night-dwelling friends - college student Claire Danvers has come to realise that for the most part, the undead just want to live their lives. But someone else wants them to get ready to rumble. There's a new extreme sport being broadcast over the Internet: bare-knuckle fights pitting captured vampires against one another - or, worse, against humans. Tracking the out-of-town signal leads Claire - accompanied by a loyal group of friends and frenemies - to discover that what started as an online brawl will soon threaten everyone in Morganville. And if they want to survive, they'll have to do a lot more than fight... From Amazon UK

I am such a huge fan of this series, as you all know, that I was expecting to be blown away yet again. And I was because of Caine's amazing ability to come up with a new plot everytime, keep the story unpredictable, and keep her characters so life like!

However, I must say, this one disappointed me a little. I have read better books in this series. And this was mainly because, in the greatr scheme of things, not a huge deal happened. Any other series and this wouldn't be a problem for me; I don't need lots happening to enjoy a book, and I did enjoy this one. But I am so used to this series being chock full of action and danger and edge-of-the-seat moments, and that's not really what you get in this book. It was much more of a slow burner, building up to the Big Event rather than being as action packed.

Bite Club is more of an emotional novel than the others. Claire is worrying about her relationships with so many people for so many different reasons and she is a very stressed Claire Bear in this book. But I'm not the kind of person who gets all that upset along with the character unless I actually believe things will end horribly wrong, and despite the plot, I didn't. Throughout the whole book, no matter how bad things got, I always had in my head that the characters were far too strong for them to not beat the emotional side of things - hell, they'd come up against worst physical problems. I won't tell you whether I was wrong to believe this or not, you'll just have to read and find out.

There was a really, really good thing about this book though. Most of the books in the series are third person perspective following Claire, and Bite Club is the same, but we also get into Shane's head. We get his first person perspective on events that happen in the book just after or just before they happen. How he's feeling, why he's feeling it, what he's going to do, etc. And although it was really cool - hello, inside Shane's head! - it was also completely necessary. Shane plays a much bigger part in this novel than he does in the others; he's always been a main character, but Claire is always the one we're with at all times of the day, but we also get to be with Shane too, even when Claire isn't around, and we need to be. Because things are happening and with both people, and we need both sides of the story to know what's going on. It was pretty awesome, and I really hope to see more of this in the next two books. Eve and Michael get more of a part to play in the next two, perhaps?

Overall, still a really good book, and a fantastic story, but not as good as I'm used to. I'd still highly recommend it to any Morganville Vampires fans, but just don't expect stakes to be flying as much as they normal.

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Forgotten by Cat Patrick

Forgotten by Cat Patrick (ARC) - With the intrigue of Memento and the romance of The Time-Traveller's Wife, Forgotten is the perfect YA novel. Here's the thing about me: I can see the future in flashes, like memories. But my past is a blank. I remember what I'll wear tomorrow, and an argument that won't happen until this afternoon. But I don't know what I ate for dinner last night. I get by with the help of notes, my mom and my best friend Jamie, and the system works ...Until now. Everything's falling apart. Jamie's going of the rails. My mom is lying to me. And I can't see the boy I adore in my future. But today, I love him. And I never want to forget how much ...Forgotten is the story of a girl for whom yesterday is lost, today is an adventure, and tomorrow is a memory. An unforgettable read. From Amazon UK

I received a surprise ARC of Forgotten last week, and as soon as I read the press release, I pretty much squealed. It sounded so unique, so fresh, and so exciting! So as soon as I finished the book I was reading at the time, I picked this book. And I have just one word for you: wow!

Forgotten was so much better than I even imagined it was going to be. It was very reminiscent of the movie 50 First Dates with Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore, with the notes that London leaves herself every night. But the difference is that she remembers the future - not see the future in flashes or glimpses, but "remembers" it, like we remember the past. She recognises people she sees today from remembering them being in her future - her mother, her best friend, etc. Which is why it's so odd that she doesn't remember this gorgeous boy who shows up one day at school, and how she has to write notes every night so she knows him the next day - even after weeks of knowing each other.

It's really beautiful seeing London try and keep a relationship going with Luke when she doesn't it's like meeting him for the very first time everyday. She doesn't tell Luke about her memory problem, like she doesn't tell most people. There are a very few people who do actually know, so trying to build a relationship from what is nothing each and everyday, by the help of her notes and what her mum tells her... it's difficult, but wonderful and beautiful to watch.

But it's not all lovely moments with her boyfriend. She has a re-occuring memory from the future of a funeral, but she doesn't know who it is. At first, it's only brief, little moments that she remembers, but then she remembers more details each time. Her mum is the only person she recognises from her day-to-day life, and she has no idea what's going on, but knows it's something big. That along with fighting with Jamie, her best friend, and lied to by her mum over her relationship with her dad, along with trying to live as normal a life as possible with her condition... life isn't really all that easy.

There isn't much more I can tell you about this book without spoiling it, but it is absolutely fantastic! Seriously, I cannot tell you how good it is! Unfortunately, it's just a stand alone novel, though I finished wanting more and more. This is one book you cannot miss out on, it's just amazing!

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Siren by Tricia Rayburn

Siren by Tricia Rayburn (review copy) - Something deadly waits beneath the waves off Winter Harvour, and this summer, no one's safe.

Timid seventeen-year-old Vanessa Sands has always had her siser Justine to protect her. Until Justine is found dead near their holiday home and her boyfriend aleb goes missing.

Looking for answers, Vanessa finds solace in Simon, Caleb's handsome brother. But time is running out as more men disappear, their bodies washed ashore grinning from ear-to-ear.

As Vanessa delves deeper int Winter Harbour's murky past she discoers that nothing is what it seems. Not even her. And only she may have the power to stop this.

Will she find the courage to fave up to wha she really is - before Simon becomes the next victim? From blurb.

When I first picked up this novel, I was excited to read it. I hadn't read any mermaid/siren novels before but had always wanted to, and I was intrigued by the plot. Now, although I enjoyed it, I'm feeling slightly underwhelmed.

Everyone knows the basic myth of sirens; beautiful femme fatales that sing, attracting men to them in the sea and causing their death. Knowing that was going to be what the story was about at it's very basic, I was, initially, more interested in Vanessa and Justine's relationship, and why she died. The characters are very well rounded with individual personalities, which you find with any novel, but there was something more to them in this book which I can't quite put my finger on, but made them seem more real. The characterisation definitely made all of them jump right out of the page.

The plot was really intriguing as Vanessa found out more; the strange weather, the people who died, the links between them. There's so much I would like to say, but I really don't want to spoil it for you - there is nothing small about this book, it all leads to the bigger picture, and I don't want to give anything away. It really keeps you turning the pages though, wondering what's going to happen next, and how it's all happening.

That's one thing I had issues with, the "how". It wasn't really explained, and I found it a little hard to understand. This could be because there is a sequel, and some things probably need to be discovered by Vanessa herself later on, but not understand what was going on jolted me a bit. I also had some issues with the ease with which most characters, and then Vanessa, eventually, seemed to accept that Sirens were the cause. It just seemed like everything up to the third part of the novel was carefully planned, and everything flowed, directing you to the end, but then the last third was rushed. Everyone accepts, a plan is quickly worked out and put into action. And the action scene... I didn't really see what was going on. Some writers are able to perfectly give you enough detail so that you can actually see everything that's happening, even though it's happening so fast and so much is going on. With Siren, I just got a bit lost; things didn't seem clear in regards to who was doing what, and then something else was happening, and I didn't understand why. All of a sudden the action was over, but I didn't really know what had actually happened. Perhaps this was just me, though.

Despite all this, I did really enjoy Siren. The mythology, what I know of it, was really quite interesting, and the cliff hanger with the unanswered questions will lead to a very exciting sequel, which I'm really looking forward too. A pretty good book.

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This Side of the Grave by Jeaniene Frost

This Side of the Grave by Jeaniene FrostThis Side of the Grave by Jeaniene Frost - WARNING! This is the fifth book in the Night Huntress series, and I cannot review it without spoiling the other books in the series. Do not read any further ff you plan on reading them and don't want them spoiled for you.

The highly anticipated continuation of Jeaniene Frost's New York Times and USA Today bestselling Night Huntress series, in which Cat and Bones face an enemy unlike any they've met before.

Danger waits on both sides of the grave.

Half-vampire Cat Crawfield and her vampire husband Bones have fought for their lives, as well as for their relationship. But just when they've triumphed over the latest battle, Cat's new and unexpected abilities threaten to upset a long-standing balance...

With the mysterious disappearance of vampires, rumors abound that a species war is brewing. A zealot is inciting tensions between the vampires and ghouls, and if these two powerful groups clash, innocent mortals could become collateral damage. Now Cat and Bones are forced to seek help from a dangerous "ally"--the ghoul queen of New Orleans herself. But the price of her assistance may prove more treacherous than even the threat of a supernatural war. ...to say nothing of the repercussions Cat never imagined. From Amazon US

Regular readers will know by now how much of a fan I am of Jeaniene Frost and her Night Huntress series. I absolutely cannot get enough of Cat and Bones, and so it is with no surprise that I was hugely excited when This Side of the Grave arrived, and started reading immediately.

Unfortunately, I was a little disappointed with this book. There was Cat and Bones being Cat and bones, so there was laughter and a few hot moments. There were some really sad moments, and some really lovely moments. For all this, this novel is well worth a read. But there was just too much missing for me.

There was very little action in this book, and the action there was didn't last very long. The story took quite a while to get going and felt quite slow, but as it was Cat telling the story, you weren't too bothered because of how amusing she is. I was thinking at times that it was probably a bit more realistic; things can't be happening all the time, there has to be moments where they're playing the waiting game. But the pace never really picked up for me. As well as there being little action, it wasn't very gorey either.

Cat goes through some important changes in this book, and there is another important event that takes place. This important event and the changes will probably lead to more things happening in later books, but it felt to me that the whole point of this book was for these two things, and a story was built around them.

Now, don't get me wrong, I still enjoyed the story. If this was a first book in a series, it would definitely make me want to pick up the others, it's not exactly boring or anything like that. It's just having read all the previous novels - including the two in the Night Huntress World series... this book doesn't really touch them. I'm sad to say I have read better by Frost, but I really do think this is a book Cat and Bones fans need to read for the important things do occur. And you'll probably enjoy it, too - just don't expect the usual fireworks.

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Con & Conjure by Lisa Shearin

I really don't need to tell you how much I love Lisa Shearin's Raine Benares series anymore, frequent blog readers will know this already. Just for the not-so-frequent readers - I LOVE them. A lot. Yesss. So much so that I entered a competition to name the fifth book. And won. And today is the day that book is released!

Con & Conjure by Lisa ShearinCon & Conjure by Lisa Shearin (released 29th March 2011) - My name is Raine Benares. I’m a seeker who finds lost things and missing people. My relatives, on the other hand, steal things. They’re the most notorious criminal family in the seven kingdoms. Sometimes I wonder if they have the right idea, especially since what I’ve found lately is likely to get me killed. And the Saghred, a soul-stealing stone that has given me unlimited power, is to blame for every last bit of it. Ever since the Saghred bonded to me, the goblin king and the elven power brokers have wanted to possess its magic themselves. But to get it, they’ll have to get me, and their pockets are deep enough to make that happen. With the help of my highly qualified family, I’ve rigged the perfect con—one that will financially ruin the elves who are spoiling for war. My family’s run elaborate scams before, but none involving this much money, government officials this highly ranked, or a war this close to starting. In our way is a goblin thief who’s after the Saghred, and my ex-fiancé—an elven assassin who may be after me. I broke up with him. Let’s just say it could have gone better. If either the goblins or the elves get their hands on the Saghred, they have every intention of using it. Which means total annihilation will be inevitable… From LisaShearin.com

Sounds brilliant, huh? And how gorgeous is that cover? Looove! You can buy your own copy from Amazon UK or Amazon US, so get to ordering! :D

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Nightshade by Andrea Cremer

Nightshade by Andrea CremerNightshade by Andrea Cremer (review copy) - She can control her pack, but not her heart ...

I wanted him to kiss me, wished he could smell the desire that I knew was pouring off me.

You can't, Calla. This boy isn't the one for you.

Calla Tor has always known her destiny: graduation, marriage and then a life leading her pack. But when she defies her masters' laws to save a human boy, she must choose. Is one boy worth losing everything? From Amazon UK

Wow! Really, just wow! For some reason, despite all the hype surrounding this novel, I wasn't too enthusiastic about reading it. I didn't exactly think I wasn't going to like it, I just didn't expect it to be brilliant. But my word, how it was!

The story and mythology are absolutely brilliant, though nothing is explained to us. This is Calla's world, so, unlike in other novels, Calla doesn't "think" about the world she lives in through the narration to explain things to us. We discover through the first few pages that she can turn into a wolf, she has a pack, and that she shouldn't save the human boy from the grizzly bear. We don't know whether she's wearing clothes or not. We don't know why she shouldn't save the boy, only that it's forbidden. Why? Because she knows the answers to these questions, so has no need to think about them. It's annoying at times, but mostly brilliant. We find things out as the story continues, either through her talking to new boy Shay, or through talking to pack mates; things are unravelled through the conversation. It's brilliant!

As I said, the mythology is brilliant. Calla is not a werewolf, she's a Guardian. Guardians are wolves, warriors that protect the Keepers, magic users who are their masters. A new pack will be formed when Calla is united with Ren, as organised by the Keepers. She's known this her whole life. She's known her job and what her future will be since she was a child, it's the reason of her existance. What's also great is the plot. On the surface, this is a paranormal romance, but as paranomal elements are uncovered, it's something much deeper. And it reminded me a lot of high fantasy. I can't really go into why without spoiling the story, but all the fantasy elements are just fantastic.

The characters are awesome. There are quite a few of them, but they all had their own distinct personalities. There's the young Nightshade pack, which Calla is alpha of, consisting of Bryn, Ansel, Mason and Fey, and then there's the young Bane pack, consisting of alpha Ren, Dax, Sabine, Neville, and Cosette. And they're all awesome, there's all kinds of tension among these group of teenagers, and the pack dynamics versus normal teenage behaviour is great to watch.

But the important characters are Calla, Ren and Shay. Calla is strong, brave, and loyal, yet not entirely comfortable with the future set before her, even though she understands it. She's fantastic, and you can't help liking her! Ren, as I said, is the alpha of the young Bane pack, and he's... well, he's a typical boy, and extremely hot. Unbelievably hot. And Shay is an orphan, human boy who's recently moved to Vail, where the story is set, with his uncle - a man who is extremely important among the Keepers. Who is also pretty hot. The damn novel is hot! The sexual tension between Calla and Ren, and Calla and Shay is at fit to burst levels! It's a wonder this girl doesn't explode! Seriously, sexual tension to give Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick a run for it's money!

The action in this book is brilliant, though it's mostly a tension builder than incredibly written choreography. Although there is a smattering of action throughout the novel, most of it is towards the end, as the main crux of the story is to develop the relationships and learn more about the mystery.

Some pretty serious themes are covered in this book as well, which was unexpected. Themes such as homophobia and abuse of power. There are some moments in this book which are seriously hard to read, and actually left me feeling disgusted and so terribly angry. Although an urban fantasy novel, this is not a "silly little novel" to overlook. This book has powerful messages to share.

I'd say this book has pretty much everything you could want from a YA novel; romance, danger, fear, action, the paranormal, contemporary themes, it has it all! And I loved it! It has a killer of a cliff-hanger, and I am absolutely dying to read the next novel, Wolfsbane, which will be out, according to Goodreads, 7th July 2011! I cannot recommend this book enough. You all need to read it! Simply amazing!

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Shade by Jeri Smith-Ready

Shade by Jeri Smith-ReadyShade by Jeri Smith-Ready (review copy) - Like everyone born after The Shift, sixteen year-old Aura can see and talk to ghosts. She's always found this mysterious ability pretty annoying, wishing only that she could reverse it and have some peace. But when her boyfriend, Logan, dies unexpectedly, Aura is forced to reconsider her connections to the dead...

Devastated by Logan's sudden death, Aura realises that her ability to see ghosts might actually be a blessing. Surely a violet-hued spirit Logan is better than no Logan at all? But just when Aura is coming to terms with having a ghost as a boyfriend, she starts developing feelings for her new friend Zachary, who is understanding, supportive and, most of all, alive. Each boy holds a piece of her heart - as well as vital cues to the secret of the Shift - and it's time for Aura to choose between loving the living, or embracing the dead... From Amazon UK

I really liked this book! I was really looking forward to reading it, being a huge urban fantasy fan and having wanted to try out Jeri Smith-Ready's adult series previously, and it was so good!

To be honest, I've not read paranormal ghost stories before. I've read books which have ghosts in, but they haven't been the main focus. However, Shade is nothing I would have expected of ghostly paranormal, and, I feel, quite unique. The world she has set up is fascinating and intriguing, and not all questions are answered for the world as a whole, let alone us as readers. Smith-Ready was very clever in how she set out this story. There is a self-contained plot for Shade, about the death of Aura's boyfriend, Logan, and their relationship while he's a ghost. But there is also the bigger picture of the Shift, and the importance of Aura, who was born one minute after the Shift happened, and Zachary, who was born one minute before. Aura wants to find out what caused the Shift, and believes her mother, who died of Cancer when Aura was three, had discovered something, through reading her diaries. The story with Logan is sweet and sad and quite worrying, but it's the bigger picture that kept me reading.

The characters are nice enough, but I didn't adore them. I found Logan to be a little annoying at times, though I felt huge amounts of sympathy for him. Aura is caught between a rock and a hard place in several different ways in this story, and you just want her to make a decision either way, most of the time. Zachary was probably my favourite character, he was just charming and lovely!

There isn't much in the way of action in this book, but that's simply because it's not that type of book. Though there are some close shave when government agents are trying to track Aura down, and there are a few close shaves.

Shade isn't the best book I've read this year, but it was still really enjoyable. I'm really looking forward to reading Shift, the sequel which is released 1st June 2011. I highly recommend this book, it's a quick, enjoyable read!

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Mortal Kiss by Alice Moss

Mortal Kiss by Alice MossMortal Kiss by Alice Moss - How much would you sacrifice for just one kiss...

When smouldering Finn and sexy Lucas arrive in Winter Mill, life starts to get very complicated for Faye McCarron.

But two boys battling for her heart is just the start. Soon there’s a dead body in the woods, a motorcycle gang on the prowl, and the snow just won’t stop falling. Something evil is at work, and only Faye and best friend Liz can stop it. As Hallowe’en draws near they must uncover the dark and sinister secret... before it’s too late.

Love paranormal romance, werewolves and ethereal spirits? Then this book is for you! From Amazon UK

I originally read this story when it was serialised on Stardoll, a gaming site for teenagers. Over a period of eight weeks, a chapter was released each day. I found out about it quite late on, when it was almost finished, so I had to catch up over a series of three days. All in all, I quite enjoyed it.

Although I enjoyed it, I would say this is a book aimed at teens at the younger end of the spectrum, 11-14 year olds. Although the characters in the novel are 16, they act very young. Almost every teen girl gets really interested in clothes and make-up at some point, but as they get older, although keeping the interest, they find other things that interest them too. Where as with Faye and her best friend Liz, this is their main interest, and react to things very much like a young teen would. Young teen novels aren't really my thing, so I found this aspect fairly annoying, but I was intrigued by the story so I kept reading anyway.

I quite liked the mythology behind the paranormal aspects of the novel. The history of the werewolves, who and why they are, was pretty intriguing and pretty unique, I thought. There were some aspects, however, ones I can't get into, I felt weren't explored well enough for my liking. It almost felt like no-one asked "why?", it was just accepted that things are like that. I would have liked more detail, more information. There was just enough to keep you reading in the hopes that it would be explained further, but it wasn't. The way the book ended leaves me with the impression that there will be a sequel, so maybe there will be more in next book.

I did like that the story was loosely based on a famous poem by an English poet, I can't tell you which without giving some of the story away. It didn't fit exactly in my opinion, but I still think it was a great way to incorporate such a famous poem into a story for young teens. Hopefully it will get teens interested in poetry!

For myself, I would have prefered it if the characters acted older, I would have believed the story a bit more if they seemed more realistic through their age. I also think the story could have been longer and filled in some of the gaps, but generally, it's a pretty exciting story! It's something I'd much prefer to read as an online story than as a book, though. The style is too young for me, personally, to love in book form. I'd say this is a book you should get your younger sister, then borrow it off her.

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Halo by Alexandra Adornetto

Halo by Alexandra AdornettoHalo by Alexandra Adornetto (ARC) - Three angels are sent down to bring good to the world: Gabriel, the warrior; Ivy, the healer; and Bethany, a teenage girl who is the least experienced of the trio. But she is the most human, and when she is romantically drawn to a mortal boy, the angels fear she will not be strong enough to save anyone - especially herself...Is love a great enough power against evil? From Amazon UK

I picked up this book in the need of a great, powerful supernatural love story. I wanted to be swept off my feet by a romantic story, and spend my whole time smiling - apart from when things got a little dangerous. What I got was a pretty good story, but nothing that blew me away.

Firstly, Alexandra Adornetto was seventeen when she wrote this novel. Seventeen. That's pretty damn amazing, and so is this novel considering her age. The language and amount of detail used was unbelievable. I'm twenty three, and perhaps I'm just not as intelligent as I could be, but I was coming across words that I don't hear every day, some I hadn't heard before. Perhaps I wouldn't even had noticed had I not known the age of Adornetto at the time the book was written, but that was always in the back of my mind, and I can only describe the language as flawless and beautiful, and intelligent! Adornetto's intelligence and knowledge of the English language just shines through this novel. The amount of description she goes into is just incredible; you can perfectly picture every person, every room, every view, everything! Her attention to detail is incredible. It's like she had this clear image of everything in her head, and wanted to make sure her readers saw, heard, felt everything she and her characters did. It really was beautiful, and for this alone, I'd say Adornetto is not just an author but an artist.

The story was very intriguing. At it's basics, it's nothing new. Human and angel fall in love, then something comes along to ruin it all. But it goes much deeper. As opposed to a few other angel novels I could name, none of the angels in this book are bad in any way; they haven't fallen, and they're not feeding off of humans. They are here to do God's work. Because of this, there was a fair amount more regarding religion than I was used to. Perhaps that's the wrong way to put it. Other novels use religious stories as a mythical or folklorish bases to inspire their own. Halo mentions some stories, but leans more towards the religious as faith rather than myth. Being angels sent to earth to do God's work, they obviously believe in God, and Heaven, and know all the stories of the Bible to be true. They pray, they ask for assistance and guidance. It doesn't go into the different religions, but it discusses human belief and understanding of the divine. It was very different from what I expected, and bordered close to being preachy, but didn't quite cross the line. You have to expect that of God's angels though, they are here to bring people closer to God. I just hadn't come across it too much before.

There is more to the story than the emphasism on faith, though. The three angels, Ivy, Gabriel (yes, that Gabriel) and Bethany have been sent to earth because the Agents of Dark have been causing havoc in the world. They are sent to Venus Cove, a sleepy little beach town to take under their care. They start of by trying to encourage a love of community and try to bring people round towards the idea of God. Small things at first, community service, voluntary work, fund raisers - though this is mostly the work of Ivy and Gabriel. Being the only on to have never been to earth before, and being the most human, Bethany gets engrossed in the experiences of human life, and of first love. The Agent of Darkness soon makes his appearance, and things start to turn quite sinister, and everyone is in danger. That's one aspect of the book I really did like, how sinister it became. It really became quite spooky towards the end, and I got right into it.

However, the characters don't have too much in the way of personality. Some of Bethany's friends at school could have been the same person, so alike they were. No-one really seemed to have any actual interests that made them individual. You never really get to know any of the characters all that well. When it comes to hobbies, we know Xavier, the love interest in the story, is into sports at school, and Gabriel discovers surfing, but otherwise, I couldn't tell you much about any of the characters but only basic things. This left me feeling detached from the characters, I didn't know them enough, so I didn't get involved in their lives. At the moments when I should have been sitting on the edge of my seat worried for the lives of the characters, I wasn't that bothered what happened to them, simply because I didn't feel anything for them. This is the one major flaw of this book, I just didn't buy into it. Because of this, the love between Bethany and Xavier never felt real to me. There wasn't any sexual tension, hardly any flirting, just complete and utter adoration that seemed to come out of the blue. It just didn't work for me.

I still enjoyed the book. It kept me turning the pages, and I couldn't put it down - thanks to the wonderful way Adorenetto writes and the plot of the story. I have to say the beginning is just perfect, of Bethany's first experiences of life as a human and things we take for granted; texture, sound, taste. I also loved the way she complains about how limited human language is, how thoughts and ideas go unspoken or misunderstood because there just aren't the words to express properly. Halo is also full of literary references showing how widely read Adornetto is, and I have found myself another favourite poem - Annabell Lee by Edgar Allan Poe.

All in all, a pretty enjoyable book and a great story, just lacking in personality. I would still recommend you give it a go, and I will definitely be on the look out for Hades, the sequel which will be released on 6th October 2011.

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The Dark Divine by Bree Despain

The Dark Divine by Bree DespainThe Dark Divine by Bree Despain (review copy) - A prodigal son. A dangerous love. Haunted yearning...Grace Divine, daughter of the local pastor, always knew something terrible happened the night Daniel Kalbi disappeared and her brother Jude came home covered in his own blood. Now that Daniel's returned, Grace must choose between her growing attraction to him and her loyalty to her brother. As Grace gets closer to Daniel, she learns the truth about that mysterious night and how to save the ones she loves, but it might cost her the one thing she cherishes most: her soul. From Amazon UK

I've been meaning to read The Dark Divine for a while, but I had never got round to it. I had always heard great things about it, and the premise had always sounded dark and mysterious, and as I was in the mood for some good YA urban fantasy, I decided to pick it up. This book is so good, I now wish I had read it earlier.

One part that really impressed me was the religious aspect. This book isn't preachy, but Grace being a good Pastor's daughter, religion does come into it. But there was more to it than just the characters being religious; religion linked to the paranormal element of the book. Now, as it's not clear from the blurb on the book or summary above, I'm not going to tell you what the paranormal element is, I don't want to spoil it for you - I didn't know before reading the book myself, though I had suspicions as I was reading. But I did love Despain's take on the mythology, how she incorporated religion into it, and made it completely fascinating! My only problem regarding the paranormal element was how little we "saw" of it in this book, though that is understandable for the mystery of the novel.

The characters were brilliant. Grace was a great characters, always wanting to do the right thing, but never sure what the right thing was; helping Daniel, or staying away so as not to hurt her brother, Jude. Her love for both of them causes such internal conflict for her, it's great watching her struggle to try to work out what she should do. Daniel is hot, mysterious, and troubled, and at the heart of an event that happened three years ago. He was Jude's best friend, but then he suddenly disappeared, and the rest of the family seem to hate him, but will never speak of why, or what happened. He doesn't seem all that keen to divulge any informationa bout it either.

The mystery and intensity of feeling between Daniel and Grace makes up for the fact that we don't witness the beginning of attraction. Grace fell for Daniel years ago, long before the book started, and though we get glimpses of the past and things that happened, we don't see the beginning. But it's still great to see their chemistry. It's not exactly sexual tension, but it's still awesome.

There is more than just the mystery surrounding Daniel and Jude, there are also deaths and people going missing from the town. This is one novel where I didn't work out who it was, I didn't see it coming at all, and it was just brilliant! All the clues were there obviously, but they are so subtle, I didn't work it out. And the ending, with the fantastic action scene! I didn't see that coming either! So, so good, and now I can't wait to read the sequel, The Lost Saint, which will be released 7th March 2011. The Dark Divine is a brilliant book, one I can't recommend enough!

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X-posted from Once Upon a Bookcase.

Delirium by Lauren Oliver

Delirium by Lauren OliverDelirium by Lauren Oliver (review copy) - There was a time when love was the most important thing in the world. People would go to the end of the earth to find it. They would tell lies for it. Even kill for it.

Then, at last, they found the cure.

Now, everything is different. Scientists are able to eradicate love, and the government demands that all citizens receive the cure upon turning eighteen. Lena Haloway has always looked forward to the day when she’ll be cured. A life without love is a life without pain: safe, measured, predictable, and happy.

But then, with only ninety-five days left until her treatment, Lena does the unthinkable. From Amazon UK

After reading and falling in love with Before I Fall* last year, I was extremely excited to read Delirium - except for one thing; dystopian novels and I don't really get on. There are the odd dystopias I come across that work, but more often than not, I don't enjoy them. I spend too long being angry and annoyed at the world the people live in, and although that's the whole point, I don't like feeling like that for a whole book. But Delirium is by Lauren Oliver. Lauren Oliver! There was no way I couldn't at leat give it a go, and so I warily opened it's pages, and became infected; I fell in love.

For the first few chapters, I was a little worried I wouldn't like it because it was typically dystopian. I was quite shocked. From the blurb, I just thought taking the cure was an option you could take, but you find out pretty soon it's compulsory. In the world our main character Lena lives in, no-one is allowed to love, it's illegal and punishable, in the worst case scenario, by death. Once you reach 18, you take the cure. Students about to graduate are Evaluated so they can find a match for them, and once they have graduated from college, they marry the person they chose from the small selection they were given. Free from love. People are not allowed to speak the word "love", they're not allowed to overly show affection - that means no hugs for friends, or children when they have fallen over. Oh yes, this is not just romantic love that is cured, but all love - familal love and love for friends included. Students are segregated from members of the opposite sex and have to be home before curfew, so there is no intermingling outside of school hours. And when you've had the cure, you're detached, and cold almost. Think Sheldon or Leonard's Mum in The Big Bang Theory, without being extremely intelligent or arrogant - everyone over the age of 18 is like that! It's the type of world I hate and makes me extremely angry.

But then Alex arrived, and the whole tone of the story changed. Lena's world is turned upside down when she starts doubting everything she's believed, everything she knows, and falls in love. And my heart lifted. I can't even begin to tell you just how beautiful this story is. It's probably the most powerful teen romance I have ever read simply because they fall in love against a background which has an extreme lack of love. In most other books, love is normal; it might not be happening for the main character at the beginning, but they live in a world where people have boyfriends and girlfriends, they're allowed to show effection, there is nothing life-threatening about love. But there is in Lena's world, so her falling in love is scary, dangerous, and wrong, but just so right, and beautiful and amazing. This is one forbidden love story (quite literally) that shines a hundred times brighter than all the rest, and it's just gorgeous! I really can't do this book any justice when it comes to the love in it, there just aren't words. It's just... wow, and totally blew me away.

What I also loved about this book was how genius it is. The idea that love could be a disease is quite a logical one when you look at the "symptoms" of falling in love; difficulty focussing, reduced mental awareness, periods of euphoria, changes in appetite, loss of other interests, and so on (p133). All things that people actually experience in real life when they fall in love. To take something like the effects of love, and build a whole story on that... it's just brilliant! I am in awe of Oliver's imagination!

I am also in awe of Oliver's way with words. The language in this book is just beautiful! Oliver is the queen of metaphors, and the language is almost poetic. It really is just beautiful.


Love, the deadliest of all deadly things: it kills you both when you have it and when you don't. But that isn't it, exactly. The condemner and the condemned. The executioner; the blade; the last-minute reprieve; the gasping breath and the rolling sky above you and the thank you, thank you, thank you, God. Love: it will kill you and save you, both. (p352)


Isn't that just wonderful?

The ending is just cruel yet phenomenal! I can't even begin to describe it, but I finished the book wanting to pick the second book up straight away! I need Pandemonium, the sequel, now! However, it isn't released until next year. I have to wait a whole year in this agony of not knowing what happens! I love it, though! I really cannot wait. I cannot recommend this book enough, you need to read it. It might just be top of my list of favourite books.

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False Witness

The Government Can Change an Identity, but It Cannot Change a Life

What is our responsibility for obtaining justice for those in need? Does the end always justify the means? Randy Singer examines these questions while taking his readers through twists and turns on a powerful journey in his novel False Witness. This engrossing legal thriller is a re-telling of Singer’s original novel by the same name. The new version has many substantial changes—some designed to bring about Singer’s original vision for the book inspired by his friend’s funeral.

The deceased was David O’Malley, Singer’s good friend and former client. O’Malley’s wife had asked Singer to give her husband’s eulogy. So, at the funeral, Singer talked about his friend’s generosity and big heart. Everyone there had a David O’Malley story, so heads nodded as he shared his. David’s pastor followed Singer in the pulpit. He spoke about a man named Thomas Kelly. The man was a scoundrel involved in organized crime. He turned on everyone he knew. “You don’t think you know Thomas Kelly, but you do,” the pastor explained. “David O’Malley was Thomas Kelly before he went into the witness protection program—before he came to the Lord.”

Prior to that moment, the only people that knew about David’s past were the government, his family, Singer, and his pastor. There was utter silence as the pastor concluded with a line Singer said he will never forget. “The government can give you a new identity,” he said, “but only Christ can change your life.” It was then that he decided to write this book.

But Singer also wanted to draw attention to one of his passions. He wanted to highlight the challenges of today’s church in India. He believes that most Western Christians are unaware of the persecution of the church and the miraculous things happening there.

India is a land of civil rights, in theory, but of brutal oppression, in fact—especially for the 165 million members of the Dalits, India’s lowest caste. During Singer’s first trip to India a few years ago, he saw firsthand the systemic oppression of the Dalits (formerly known as untouchables) through the Hindu caste system. Singer was astonished by the fact that the world’s largest democracy was also a breeding ground for the world’s largest human-trafficking operations, that it would allow the exploitation of 15 million children in bonded labor, that it would tolerate temple prostitution and other forms of sexual slavery, and that it would foster economic and social systems that oppress nearly 25 percent of its people.

But there is a silver lining. A bond was formed between the Dalits and Christians. The Dalits began asking the church to help educate their children. Hundreds of schools sprang up, providing thousands of Dalit children with an English-based education (critical to landing good jobs) and newfound self-respect. The Dalits responded with another invitation: “If this is the Christian faith, come start a church in our village.” The result is that millions of Dalits and other Indians are coming to Christ, drawn by a religion that believes the ground is equal at the foot of the cross.

Singer was moved by the plight of the Dalit children, struggling to throw off the yoke of oppression and replace it with real freedom and dignity, so he committed to do his part because he believes that “no child should be untouchable.” So he is donating every penny from the sale of False Witness to the Dalit Freedom Network. His novel will take readers from the streets of Las Vegas to the halls of the American justice system and the inner sanctum of the growing church in India with all the trademark twists, turns, and legal intrigue his fans have come to expect.

False Witness begins with Clark Shealy, a bail bondsman with the ultimate bounty on the line—his wife’s life. He has 48 hours to find an Indian professor in possession of the Abacus Algorithm—an equation so powerful it could crack all Internet encryption.

Four years later, law student Jamie Brock is working in legal aid when a routine case takes a vicious twist. She and two colleagues learn that their clients, members of the witness protection program, are accused of defrauding the government and have the encrypted algorithm in their possession. Now they’re on the run from federal agents and the Chinese mafia, who will do anything to get the algorithm. Caught in the middle, Jamie and her friends must protect their clients if they want to survive long enough to graduate.

In this engrossing legal thriller, Singer shows how God is a God of justice and how, in His time, justice will be served.

Suspense author Randy Singer brings awareness to the plight of Dalits in India