Thursday, 27 February 2014

FF (4)


Want to join Follow Friday? Check it out at Parajunkee or Alison Can Read

Woop woop! I'm this weeks featured blogger! I'm over on Parajunkie so go over and check that out!

This weeks question/ task is...

If you could, what book would you change the ending or a plot thread? Go ahead and do it...change it.

I'm sorry but I'm going to be really boring this week and say I wouldn't change any plot or ending if I'm honest. Out of all the books I've read in my life I've been happy with every ending. 
I know that sounds hard to believe but I honestly have. 
So I'm afraid the answer to this weeks question is, I wouldn't. 





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Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Author Interview: Michelle Madow

Today I have an interview for you with the lovely Michelle Madow! I've worked with Michelle quite a few times and I can honestly say, she's so nice! When I first started blogging and reviewing Michelle was one of the first authors I ever did work for. And now, nearly 2 years on, I've reviewed 3 books for her, done blog tours, feature posts and more! 

Enjoy the interview!

How does it feel to have the Secret Diamond Sisters being released soon?

I'm excited, but also really really nervous! This is my first big release -- it's a dream come true -- and it's mind boggling to think that The Secret Diamond Sisters will be in bookstores all over the world. There are so many great books out there for readers to choose to read, and I'm just hoping that mine will land on their radar -- and that if it does, that they like it! 

Have you always wanted to write?

I’ve been a writer forever—I wrote creatively in elementary school, journaled in high school, and wrote fan fiction in my first two years of college. In second grade, I was "that kid" who would write 12 page stories on free write journal day, and insist on sharing them with the class. I finally realized writing was something I wanted to do professionally when I was a junior in college. I was taking an Intro to Creative Writing class, and when I turned in my first assignment (the first chapter of my first novel, Remembrance), my classmates and teacher loved it and wanted to read more. I'd never thought I could complete a novel, but I realized I would never know if I didn’t try. So I tried, and completed the first draft by the end of the school year.

Tips for an aspiring writer?

A writer I know once told me, “You have to write one million bad words before you write anything others want to read,” and that is so true. Writing is a skill, and like any other skill, it takes practice to improve. Experiment with different approaches to writing a novel so you can find what works best for you. I can’t write a book without outlining it in detail first, but some people like to let the story come to them as they write. There is no right or wrong way—only the right way for you.

Most importantly, above anything else, you have to write. Know what time of day you get your best writing done, and force yourself to write during that time, even if you’re not feeling “in- spired.” Writing is work, and it’s not going to be fun all the time. There will be parts you will struggle with, that will frustrate you to no end and make you want to hit your keyboard, but you need to keep your end goal in mind. Set a minimum goal of how many words you can comfortably write per day, and reach that minimum five days a week. Make sure your goal per day is attainable for you—if it’s too high, it will be frustrating and will make you want to quit. And remember that even if you’re having a rough writing day, force yourself to reach that minimum. First drafts don’t need to be perfect, since you will edit it afterward.

Once you draft and edit your first book until you can’t edit it any further, write and edit a second. Your second book should be the first in a new series and not a continuation of the first book you wrote, because this will improve your chances of one of your books getting picked up by an agent. Then do the same with a third, and so on. During this time, do your research on the publishing world and submit your books to agents. If you continue to do this, if you believe in yourself and if you want it badly enough, you are giving yourself the best chance for success. Remember: the people who make it are the ones who never gave up!

Michelle Madow has visited Las Vegas every year since she was fifteen years old, and was inspired to write The Secret Diamond Sisters while walking through the beautiful Wynn Hotel. She grew up in the suburbs of Baltimore, then went to Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida. She wrote her first novel, Remembrance, in her junior year of college, and later went on to self-publish it as book one in the Transcend Time Saga. She wrote The Secret Diamond Sisters in the year following graduation, and is so happy to finally share it with the world!

Savannah. Courtney. Peyton. 

The three sisters grew up not knowing their father and not quite catching a break. But it looks like their luck is about to change when they find out the secret identity of their long-lost dad—a billionaire Las Vegas hotel owner who wants them to come live in a gorgeous penthouse hotel suite. Suddenly the Strip's most exclusive clubs are all-access, and with an unlimited credit card each, it should be easier than ever to fit right in. But in a town full of secrets and illusion, fitting in is nothing compared to finding out the truth about their past.






Praise:

"Sexy and often electrifying ... Gossip Girl meets The Princess Diaries in a city that never sleeps."
--Booklist

"This quick and entertaining read is filled with glitz and glamour ... get ready for one crazy and fabulous ride."
--RT Book Reviews

“Highly addictive! Hold on tight, because The Secret Diamond Sisters throws you head first into the Vegas fast lane. Three every day teens navigate the slippery slope of wealth, popularity, and too much freedom, along with family drama, cat fights, and more gorgeous guys than should be legal. A fun ride not to be missed!”
– Rachel Harris, author of My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century






Michelle lives in Boca Raton, Florida, where she is writing more novels for young adults. She loves reading, spending time with family and friends, traveling, shopping, sunshine, Disney fairy tales, and Broadway musicals. She loves connecting with readers online, so be sure to follow her on Facebook (facebook.com/MichelleMadow), Twitter (@MichelleMadow), and Instagram (@MichelleMadow).







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Friday, 21 February 2014

FF (3)


 Want to join Follow Friday? Check it out at Parajunkee or Alison Can Read

This weeks question is...

What was the last book that made you cry?


Now this is hard, I don't really cry at a lot of books but I did well up a the fault in our starts. It's a beautiful book, expect a review soon! :)







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Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Review: Suzy P and the Trouble with Three

Title: Suzy P and the Trouble with Three
Author: Karen Saunders
Series: Me, Suzy P (2)
Publisher: Templar Publishing

Blurb:

Suzy's off camping with her family and best mate Millie. Yep, you heard right... camping!

As if being stuck in a caravan in rainy Wales for two whole weeks weren't bad enough, to make matters worse, Mum's best friend's daughter, super glam (and super snooty) Isabella is coming too. When Millie starts spending all her time with Isabella. Suzy is devastated. Can her friendship with Millie survive when three is most definitely a crowd?

My Review:

This book follows on from Me Suzy P, which I reviewed last year. I really enjoyed the last book and couldn't wait to receive this one!

As soon as I started reading this I was instantly sucked back into the clumsy world of Suzy and her friends. Suzy reminds me of myself slightly so I could relate to her easily. This time, moody Isabella turns up and has to live with Suzy and her family whilst her mum finalises a divorce. Isabella comes from Italy and is what Suzy describes as a 'Mulberry girl'. She's snooty, sour and rich.

When Suzy's mum wins a caravan the Puttocks, Isabella and Millie (Suzy's friend) set off on a camping holiday. Let's just say not everything goes to plan for Suzy and she ends up in A&E multiple times during the holiday...

Throw in a camping competition, some fit boys and a pregnant sister, you can tell that the holidays going to be very interesting.

I really enjoyed this book and I like the style Karen Saunders writes in. She's very funny and has a style that sucks you into the pages.

I really like the Suzy P series and would recommend the books if you're looking for a fun read!

X X X X X 

Friday, 14 February 2014

FF (2)


 Want to join Follow Friday? Check it out at Parajunkee or Alison Can Read!

This weeks question is.... (drumroll please)

Question of the Week: Find a “new to you blogger” and feature their button on your post this week (or just a link if they have no button). Tell us why this blogger stands out to you.



Link here!

Kristen's blog was new to me last week and I love it! I love the design of her blog and her reviews are clear and interesting to read! Her blog button is awesome as well and you definitely need to go and check out her blog! :) 

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Kristen's blog!



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Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Review of Rainbow Beauty: Blueberry Wishes

Title: Blueberry Wishes
Author: Kelly McKain
Series: Rainbow Beauty 3


Blurb:

There’s an autumn chill in the air, but nothing can dampen Abbie’s spirits. Her family’s business – the Rainbow Beauty parlour – is a sparkling success, and spending time with her friends, Ben, Summer and gorgeous Marco is a dream.

But when a swanky new spa starts to steal their customers, the business’s fortunes come crashing down and Abbie’s family face their biggest storm yet. Can Abbie save Rainbow Beauty before it’s too late...or is this one wish too far?


My Review:

I have to admit, I've really loved this series and I'm going to miss reading about. I read each book one after the other and I really connected with the characters.

Abbie's just got to grips with her new life in Devon - she's got new friends and an amazing boyfriend.

Summer's over and there's an autumn feel, Abbie and her sisters have to go back to school. Everything's been great in Rainbow Beauty, until a new spa opens and steals all their customers. This new spa has everything, low prices and amazing offers. It looks like the end for Rainbow Beauty and it very nearly is.

They can't afford to feed themselves and despite all their efforts it looks like the end. Abbie's mum and sisters seem to accept this and are ready to move back to London, but Abbie isn't giving up. She starts to dream up a fundraising scheme and starts to put it into action. But will all her efforts save the business or is it too late?

I've really enjoyed this series and I'd definitely recommend you check it out. It's perfect for a girly read!

X X X X X






Friday, 7 February 2014

FF (1)



Want to join Follow Friday? Check it out at Parajunkee or Alison Can Read!

I've just joined FF and it's my first post!

This weeks question is...

If you could read a book for the “first time” again, which book would it be? Why?


Hmmm, tricky, I think The Hunger Games, because I'd love to be engrossed in the story again, I'd never really seen all the fuss with the Hunger Games. That was until I read it, I instantly fell in love with it and cannot express how much I love the books and films!! I would love to read it as a first time read again! :)



Tuesday, 4 February 2014

Creative Writing Competition!

Hi guys! 

Recently I entered a  creative writing competition with Kate Maryon! It had to be 1000 words or less and based around a shoe. Here's what I came up with! :)

I was in the local park, walking, alone, minding my own business. Nobody was around – it was oddly peaceful. Suddenly, a gold shoe plummeted down to earth. It was a metallic gold converse. I picked it up and then…

I awoke with a start. What a strange dream. A gold shoe plummeting to earth? Where did that come from? I started to get ready, throwing on a pair of joggers and a t-shirt. Grabbing my phone, I went out of my house. I was going for my usual Sunday morning run. Just as I was jogging along, the same gold shoe that was in my dream fell to earth. How was this possible I thought to myself? Surely I was hallucinating. Shoes don’t just fall to earth. It was the same gold shoe - that was too much of a coincidence. Bending down, I inspected the shoe. As I picked it up to have a closer look the world seemed to shake slightly. In a matter of seconds the shaking grew more and more violent. The world turned hazy and I began to feel alarmed. Then, it one quick flash of light I started to fall, down and down, deeper and deeper, until I landed with a sharp thud…

Scrambling to my feet I surveyed my surroundings. What was this place? There seemed to be people rushing around. A busy buzz circulated the room. There was a huge round table in the centre with people who seemed to be having a heated discussion. A girl, she must’ve been about my age, scurried past. She stopped and examined me.
“Are you new around here? I’ve never seen you before.”
“You could say that.” I replied.
“Name?” She enquired.
“Brad.”
“Brad? What kind of a name is that?”
“A normal one!” I retorted. “What’s yours?”
“I’m Stefetto, named after the great stiletto!”
“You’re named after a shoe? And you’re taking the mick out my name?!”
“Yes, everyone around here is!”
“And where exactly is around here?”
“You’re in the Shoeniverse.”
“The what?! I must be dreaming!”

Stefetto suddenly shouted,
“Quick run!”

I turned around, wondering what was going on. The round table was upturned. A shadowy figure started to run towards me. The next thing I knew, I was being dragged. Pulled along through endless corridors when finally, we reached a door. We both collapsed inside, our hearts racing.
Before I could process where we were or what had just happened, Stefetto started to say,
“Boy, that was close, if I hadn’t have grabbed you, who knows what they would’ve done?”
“What just happened and who are ‘they’?”
“Do you not know anything? They were the odours, the enemy of the Shoeniverse. They’re trying to get someone to fight them. They say it will be the battle to end all battles. Our leader is trying to find someone who’s brave enough to take part!”

In all the chaos I hadn’t realised that my shoe lace was undone, as I bent down to do it up. Stefetto stopped me and said,
“What shoes are they?”
“These, oh they’re just my odourless trainers, I use them when I’m running.”
“Hold on, back up a minute, they’re odourless trainers?”
“Yes…”
“They’re exactly what we need! Odourless trainers to fight the odours – they’re perfect! We need you to fight for us!”
“Wait, what?! I can’t fight for you!” I protested.
“Oh yes you can! I’ll take you to Doc Marten!”
“And he is…?”
“The leader of the Shoeniverse.”
“Of course he is…” I said in a sarcastic voice.

A tall, sincere man stood before me. He approached me, eyeing me up. Stefetto had told him all about my trainers.
“So, you’re the boy to save the Shoeniverse.”
“Well, I, er… guess.” I stuttered.
“Marvellous, we’ll have you ready soon!” He boomed. He turned away then looked back,
“You fight tomorrow.”
 Before I could protest I’d been dragged out of the room the doors slammed shut and I was left, alone, with the fate of the Shoeniverse resting on my shoulders, or I should say, trainers.

The next day, I was a bag of nerves. I’d been placed in an ash grey top and trousers with my trainers on my feet. I was taken to an arena; it had what seemed like thousands of seats.

The odours entered, they were dark silhouette based figures. Now I was really nervous…

A claxon fired and I had to run. The odours headed straight for me. I didn’t know what to do, so I jumped. I flipped right over the odours. They seemed startled so I took my chance and I attempted a kick. Something in my trainer seemed to repel them. Then I realised – odourless trainers. I kicked again, this time my shoe went flying off; it hit the lead odour directly in the face. He keeled back, seemingly hurt. The odour fell to the floor and then in the blink of an eye he had vaporized. His fellow odours quickly did the same – one blink and they were gone. A black mist twirled its way across the room and into my shoe.

I couldn’t believe it; I’d actually defeated the odours and saved the Shoeniverse! I was so overwhelmed.

Steffetto ran up to me, she exclaimed,
“You’ve saved the Shoeniverse!!”
She bounced around like an excitable puppy.

Doc Marten thanked me immensely. Just as I was walking with Steffetto the world began to shake again. It grew more and more violent and in a flash of light I was back where I was before. Alone. With just the shoe lying in front of me.

I ran home leaving my trainers by the door and went up to my bedroom. Later on, my mum entered my room. As she entered, I swear I saw a dark shadow pass by. She was holding my trainers at a distance.

“Have you smelt these? I’d ask for my money back! They certainly aren’t odourless!”