Saturday, October 31, 2009

What to post today?

So I have been sitting around thinking about what to post up here today. I haven't finished Brainjack by Brian Falkner yet so I couldn't post a review of it yet and I was hoping to have read Ruined by Paula Morris already so I could've reviewed that today. So instead I have decided to finish my New Zealand Book Month stuff one day early.

Now I could also have posted a review for a book that I have read recently because I do have a lot of them. In fact most of November will be filled up with book reviews.

But I have decided to share with you a couple of books that are being released here in November. Because I'm really excited about them all and I'm kind of jumping up and down with excitement at them being released. But they're all part of series' so if you don't want spoilers don't read the descriptions.

Hell's Heroes by Darren Shan

The final dramatic conclusion to Darren Shan's international phenomena, The Demonata. Expect the unexpected..."The girl gazes up at me. She's even younger than I thought, clutching a small teddy bear in one hand. 'Are you the bogey man?' she whispers, eyes round. 'Yes,' I croak, then take hold of her head with my huge, scarred, blood-soaked hands and crush..." Beranabus and Dervish are gone. Bec has formed an unholy alliance with Lord Loss. Kernel is blind, held on Earth against his will. Grubbs is mad with grief and spinning out of control. The demons are crossing. The Disciples are falling. The Shadow is waiting. Welcome to the end.

Are These My Basoomas I See Before Me by Louise Rennison

For Georgia, the more things change, the more they stay the same. Just when she thought she was the official one-and-only girlfriend of Masimo, he's walked off into the night with the full hump, leaving Georgia all aloney on her owney—again. All because Dave the Laugh tried to do fisticuffs at dawn with him!

Two boys fighting over Georgia? It's almost as romantic as Romeo and Juliet . . . though perhaps a touch less tragic.

It's time for Georgia to get to the bottom (oo-er) of this Dave the Laugh spontaneous puckering business once and for all. It's like they always say: If you snog a mate in the forest of red bottomosity and no one is around to see it, is he still a mate? Or is he something more?

Crocodile Tears by Anthony Horowitz

It's just another day in the life of an average kid. If you're Alex Rider, that is. A con artist has realized there is big money in charity-- the bigger the disaster, the greater the money flow! So that is what he will produce: the biggest disaster known to man, all thanks to genetically modified wheat that can release a virus so potent it can knock out an entire country in one windy day. But Alex Rider will face whatever it takes--gunfire, explosions, hand-to-hand combat with mercenaries-- to bring down his most dangerous adversary yet.

Often imitated, never equaled, the series that triggered a reading phenomenon is back, exhilarating and addictive as ever.

Friday, October 30, 2009

YA new releases for 2009 Part Two

Today I am back with more exciting new releases for 2009 by New Zealand Authors.

End of the Alphabet by Fleur Beale

Ruby Yarrow is 14 and she's a good girl who helps out alot around the house with cooking and looking after the little ones. Ruby's best friend Tia tells her to stop being a doormat which gets Ruby thinking. How do you stop being a doormat and start standing up for yourself? Ruby can't even get her own bedroom, so why does she think she could get accepted for a school trip to Brazil? But Tia has made her start thinking and things will never be the same again for Ruby or her family.

Tribal Ash by Vincent Ford

Having survived the warring tribe of the North, Trei makes his way back home, leaving his twin sister Souk with the Northmen. After struggling through snowy mountains, he is taken in and looked after for a time by the sea people, before he heads off again on his journey to find his own tribe, the People of the Canyons.

About Griffen's Heart by Tina Shaw

James Griffen is sixteen, with a bad heart and on the hospital waiting list for a valve replacement. He's also considered a nerd at school. Then he falls for the hottest chick at school, Roxy, who unlike James is cool, streetwise and angry. James is loyal in his affections and in spite of the thrashing his heart gets in the pursuit, he and Roxy form an odd bond, and James is the one who hangs in there when things get nasty.

Plague of the Undead by Gary Cross

When Lucius is ten years old his father returns home one evening as a vampire and destroys his entire family. By luck Lucius is spared. Fifteen years later Lucius has joined the elite group of vampire hunters who saved his life that night. Now it's his turn to lead the hunt, this time on the trail of a master vampire, who has survived hundreds of years and is intent on turning the world into a vampire race. Through Paris and the wilds of Europe Lucius tracks his quarry, eventually running him to ground in the plague infested streets of London. But this is no ordinary vampire will Lucius survive or will he too enter the realm of the undead?

Thursday, October 29, 2009

YA new releases for 2009 Part One

I have compiled a list of books that have been released this year by New Zealand authors. I have added some descriptions and some images. So keep an eye out for these really interesting sounding titles.

Nina of the Dark by Ken Catran

Nina of the dark was slave-born and fated to seek a terrible truth from lost centuries. Her only allies a thief, a giant and an ancient prophesy, Nina must battle the darkness in herself and the ungodly creatures of evil who threaten humans with a new dark age.

The Bone Tiki by David Hair

What do you do when you meet a tohunga makutu? You run. When reality dissolves and myths and legends come alive? You run faster. And when the dead come to life and blood debts have to be paid, will you have the courage to do what must be done? Matiu Douglas has a bone tiki he stole from a tangi. His father's important new client wants it. Badly. And he has some very nasty friends. When Mat is forced to flee for his life, an unexpected meeting with a girl called Pania sets his world spinning. Suddenly he's running through the bush with a girl-clown, a dog who is way too human, and a long-dead warrior. Fearful creatures from legend are rising up around him, and Mat faces a terrifying ordeal. And there is nowhere left to hide...not even in another world.

The Crossing by Mandy Hager

The Crossing, the first of the 'Blood of the Lamb' trilogy, is set on a fictional Pacific island, approximately three generations after an apocalyptic event (a solar flare) in 2012 threw the world into complete chaos. At that time, a large cruise ship 'Star of the Sea' had just foundered at the entrance to the main lagoon. This cruise ship, and her accompanying crew, forms a temporary sanctuary for the island's inhabitants. Over the intervening years, the descendants of the original ship's captain and officers manipulate Christian texts to implant themselves as 'gods'. With greater resources and reserves than the islanders, this white elite re-builds a society that is predominantly designed to meet its own needs - especially one specialised 'need'...the need for blood. A leukaemia-related disease (attributed to the radiation from the solar flare) has reached epidemic proportions, with few able to escape its grasp. As pharmaceutical intervention is no longer an option, the elite have developed a method of maintaining their strength and prolonging their lives once diagnosed The trilogy follows the fate of fifteen-year-old Maryam and three other main characters - Joseph, Lazarus and Ruth.

Brainjack by Brian Falkner

Sam, a teenage computer genius, takes up an invitation to join a secret online convention for the best hackers in the world. The location for the convention? The White House. But Sam finds out that it is really a challenge to find expert hackers to protect the country. Sam is thrown into a world of international high-risk security and double crossing traitors where he must protect the world from a metasystem, connected to every computer terminal satellite and secuitry camera, that seeks to erase the human race.

Real Life by Ella West

Despite their gifts, Nicky and her fellow travellers are back at the Project. They've been isused with new tracking bracelets that can't be removed, leaving them all feeling trapped and betrayed. But Nicky won't be confined. She continues to brood on escape, but discovers a swim team in the nearby town, returning to what she loves. But for how long will the Project tolerate her small slice of freedom? Meanwhile, the project is caught up in sinister, questionable affairs. When terrorists threaten, Nicky is sent to the dangerous heart of the matter. No longer afraid of her remarkable abilities, and no longer willing to let others decide for her, Nicky is on the brink of retrieving her own real life. But destructive forces close in.

Fire on High by David Hill

Jonno has won an essay writing competition, and his prize is a trip to South America to watch a total eclipse of the sun. When Jonno arrives he notices more about the country he is visiting than the eclipse, as a group of local people, the NUF, are protesting against the government. Armed soldiers are also walking the streets and there are reports of violence and death on both sides. Jonno is looking forward to returning to the safety of home but when he and his fellow travellers get on an aeroplane, their plane is hijacked by members of the NUF.

Ruined by Paula Morris

Rebecca couldn't feel more out of place in New Orleans, where she comes to spend the year while her dad is travelling. She's staying in a creepy old house with her Aunt Claudia, who reads Tarot cards for a living. And at the snooty prep school, a pack of filthy-rich girls treat Rebecca like she's invisible. Only gorgeous, unavailable Anton Grey seems to give Rebecca the time of day, but she wonders if he's got a hidden agenda. Then one night, in Lafayette Cemetery, Rebecca makes a friend. Sweet, mysterious Lisette is eager to talk to Rebecca, and to show her the nooks and crannies of the city.

Lake of the Dead by Stu Duval

Six classmates are on a hiking trip to study the geological features of the vast and wild Bellevue Forest when the mighty Mount Darius erupts. The group are swept into a violent landslide of soil and rock. Josh and Greer find themselves alone in a dramatically changed landscape. Lost they stumble upon an eerie, abandoned town and its long-forgotten secrets. And they discover why the lake that surrounds the town was once given the name "Lago da Morte", Lake of the Dead.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Mini Review on Grandpa's Books

Keeping in theme with my New Zealand book Month thing, I wanted to talk about some picture books that I remember from when I was in primary school.

This series is all about Grandpa and it is by Joy Watson.

Grandpa's Slippers

All week long Grandma tries to dispose of Grandpa's tatty old slippers, but he refuses to part with them. By the weekend, however, Grandpa's old slippers have fallen apart and he has to try the new ones. To Grandpa's amazement, the new slippers are actually quite comfortable.

Grandpa's Cardigan

Grandma decides to throw away Grandpa's shabby old cardigan, but when he goes to buy a new one just the same, the only place that has one is the opportunity shop...

Grandpa's Shorts

When the family invite Grandma and Grandpa to the beach, Grandma doesn't want Grandpa to wear his old beach shorts, but he finds them and the kids think he looks pretty cool.

Grandpa's Shed

Grandpa decides it's time to clean out his shed. Grandma offers to help but he says he can do it.

Grandpa's Cat

The family cat is missing and while Grandma insists that it will turn up, Grandpa is determined to find his precious moggy even if it means turning the house upside down.

The whole Grandpa series is really really cool. I personally find them all to be really funny and the pictures are all really good.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Another Guest Post From Scarlett

Title: Losing It

Author: Sandy McKay

Publisher: Longacre Press, 2007

Pages: 217

Summary: Fifteen-year-old Johanna Morrison is in hospital, writing letters to her best friend, Issy. As part of her therapy Jo is not allowed to leave her room, use the phone, have visitors or even wash her hair. Not unless she agrees to eat. But Jo doesn?t want to eat because to her that would mean giving in and losing what little control she has over her life. Jo suffers from anorexia and her condition has reached crisis point. For now, contact with Issy is the only thing keeping her sane.

Review: When I was chatting to Rebecca about books by New Zealand authors I was telling her about the book Losing It by Sandy McKay and when she told me she had not read this book. I kindly offered to write up a review to share with her and with everyone else so that you all might decide to read this book.

Because in my opinion Losing It is a book that you should read.
1. You enjoy books about eating disorders
2. You like pen pal types of books
3. Because I enjoyed this book and so I think you will too

I liked Jo, she seemed like an ok kind of gal and yeah she has her flaws but seriously who doesn't???

Now also, before you say 'yeah but it's a book about eating disorders that is so overdone!' I have to counter that with 'but Losing It is presented in a really different way to any old book about eating disorders.

Also, I really really love this cover. It is so sad and I just love it, it is very fitting to the book itself.

So if you like books about eating disorders then you will definitely love this book. Sandy McKay is the most awesome book ever.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Under the Mountain

So I have found a trailer for Under the Mountain which is a movie based on the book Under the Mountain by New Zealand author Maurice Gee. So today I have the trailer for the movie. So sit back, relax and watch the movie trailer.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

In My Mailbox (29)

In My Mailbox was created by The Story Siren. It is a weekly feature where I talk about the books I got this week from various sources.

So this week I bought myself one book and I got a few books from the library.

The bought:

Fire by Kristin Cashore

She is the last of her kind...

It is not a peaceful time in the Dells. In King City, the young King Nash is clinging to the throne, while rebel lords in the north and south build armies to unseat him. War is coming. And the mountains and forest are filled with spies and thieves. This is where Fire lives, a girl whose beauty is impossibly irresistible and who can control the minds of everyone around her.

I cannot wait to read this book. I was so happy when I got it. Now all I need to do is get my own copy of Graceling which I absolutely loved.

From the library:

The Hollow by Jessica Verday

When Abbey's best friend, Kristen, vanishes at the bridge near Sleepy Hollow Cemetery, everyone else is all too quick to accept that Kristen is dead?and rumors fly that her death was no accident. Abbey goes through the motions of mourning her best friend, but privately, she refuses to believe that Kristen is really gone. Then she meets Caspian, the gorgeous and mysterious boy who shows up out of nowhere at Kristen's funeral, and keeps reappearing in Abbey's life. Caspian clearly has secrets of his own, but he's the only person who makes Abbey feel normal again...but also special.

Hate List by Jennifer Brown

Sixteen-year-old Valerie, whose boyfriend Nick committed a school shooting at the end of their junior year, struggles to cope with integrating herself back into high school life, unsure herself whether she was a hero or a villain.

The Faery Reel : Tales From The Twilight Realm by Various Authors

A collection of stories and poems about faeries in all parts of the world by a variety of authors.

The Eternal Kiss by Various Authors

There’s an allure to vampire tales that have seduced readers for generations. From Bram Stoker to Stephenie Meyer and beyond, vampire stories are here to stay. For those fresh-blooded fans of paranormal romance or for those whose hunt and hunger never dies, these stories have what readers want! This collection of original tales comes from some of the hottest, most popular, and best-selling YA writers.

Ruined by Paula Morris

Rebecca couldn't feel more out of place in New Orleans, where she comes to spend the year while her dad is travelling. She's staying in a creepy old house with her Aunt Claudia, who reads Tarot cards for a living. And at the snooty prep school, a pack of filthy-rich girls treat Rebecca like she's invisible. Only gorgeous, unavailable Anton Grey seems to give Rebecca the time of day, but she wonders if he's got a hidden agenda. Then one night, in Lafayette Cemetery, Rebecca makes a friend. Sweet, mysterious Lisette is eager to talk to Rebecca, and to show her the nooks and crannies of the city.

And that was all of the wonderful books I got this week. I can't wait to see what everyone else got.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

On a Good Day by Deborah Burnside

On a Good Day by Deborah Burnside
Published: Auckland : Penguin Books, 2004

With an alcoholic parent, no money, food, attention or affection Lee is finding adolescence a challenge.

I really enjoyed On a Good Day by Deborah Burnside.

On a Good Day was quite different to the books I usually read. But it was actually really good.

I really liked all of the character, especially Lee. I felt really bad for Lee because things seemed to be going really bad for her. I thought it was really unfair about how most people treated Lee. But then of course there were the really nice characters who actually treated Lee with respect.

This book was really well written because it captured emotions really well and this book took me on an emotional roller coaster ride. I was happy, I was sad and I was angry, among other things.

Basically, On A Good Day is a really well-written book. The ending was pretty good and I was pretty happy with the book as a whole.

Definitely check this book out if you get the chance.

Friday, October 23, 2009

With Lots of Love From Georgia by Brigid Lowry

With Lots of Love From Georgia by Brigid Lowry
Published: Crows Nest : Allen & Unwin, 2005

My name is Georgia. I live in a town called Anywhere that has too many shopping malls and not enough skate parks. I like to think of myself as a brilliant creative person, but sometimes I just feel like a sad lonely girl with a big bum.

Things I Want

a magic bicycle

Two tickets to Natural Affinity

A Vietnamese blue silk eiderdown

To see a ghost

Eva to shift to another planet

A cyborg to clean my room

Purple tulips


Welcome to the world of Georgia, Philosopher Queen and list-maker extraordinaire, as she writes her way through a bumpy year that includes part-time jobs, tricky mother stuff and a boy with a delicious smile.

A book written in diary form about a girl called Georgia??? No way! Somehow I swear I have heard of something like this before. I would say actually thats as far as it goes for similarities but they are both funny too. But then in the end they are actually completely different.

So Georgia is actually an interesting person. She has a very eventful life and luckily we get to know all about and it is actually pretty good. I myself write a lot of lists too and so I find Georgia to be an incredibly relatable character.

This book is actually really short and it's very interesting and exciting and so I basically just sat down and read this book in one setting. It's definitely a good read.

I first saw this book on a poster of finalists for the New Zealand Post book awards and so I picked it up and read it and the good news is it actually won the award for 2006. Which just goes to show how good of a book it is.

I have to say there is a little bit of a surprise in this book. Which is a really interesting one and when it happens you can actually see that yes all the signs were there. I don't know if anyone else was expecting it but I wasn't.

Overall, Brigid Lowry does a fantastic and absolutely splendid job of writing about Georgia. This book is a really light read and I think it would best be suited for a holiday read.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Tiggie Thompson Show by Tessa Duder

The Tiggie Thompson Show by Tessa Duder
Published: Auckland : Puffin Books, 1999
Series: Book 1, Tiggie Tompson Trilogy

Set in Auckland during the 1990's, Tiggie Tompson is a teenage girl struggling to come to terms with herself. Tiggie thinks she's dumpy, plain and talentless, she knows that her parents and teachers think she's a loser and at school she's the butt of jokes. To make it worse her mother is a glamorous television journalist, with a famous face. At her new liberal school all she wants is to continue leading a quiet life. However, things don't turn out quite as she planned, Tiggie Tompson is about to be discovered.

I really enjoyed reading The Tiggie Tompson Show. It's not really like anything I've ever read before to be honest. Basically, it's a really good book about a girl named Tiggie who becomes an actress in a tv show.

I like Tiggie because she is a really nice and down-to-earth person. I feel bad for her because she had some quite bad self-esteem issues but it was really good to see her finding herself towards the end of the book.

While this book seems like a really light read it's more serious than that. The Tiggie Tompson Show deals with a couple of teen issues.

Overall, The Tiggie Tompson Show is a really good beginning to a great trilogy. If you're interested in books about tv shows or about 'teen issues' such as weight etc. then The Tiggie Tompson show is definitely your kind of book.

The other two books are Tiggie Tompson All At Sea and Tiggie Tompson's Longest Journey.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Watermark by Penelope Todd

Watermark by Penelope Todd
Published: Dunedin : Longacre Press, 2003
Series: Book 1, Watermark Trilogy

18-year-old city girl, Zillah, abandons her safe summer holiday plans, and takes the train to the wild West Coast in response to a mysterious letter. Her destination: an empty shack on a dangerous tidal river. Here she meets the authors of the letter, Joss and Hep,a brother and sister who seem to belong to another more primitive world. Together, they wield a power over Zillah that she barely understands.

I quite enjoyed reading Watermark it was quite different to most books that I've ever read before. It has more of a psychological, philosophical and symbolic approach.

The characters are all really interesting. I found Zillah to be an interesting person as she searched for who she was as a person. Joss and Hep confused me a little at times. I felt that they were overly mysterious and I have a few questions about them. I'm hoping by the end of the trilogy the questions will be answered.

The story line is a good one. There is a tiny element of mystery in there which I really liked because I do love mystery.

Now, I would like to talk about the setting of the book. Because it is a great setting. Watermark is set out in the country, in nature. It sets the whole mood of the book as peaceful, calm and quiet.
I really really love it.

There's not a lot more I can think of to say about Watermark because it actually is pretty hard to describe. Penelope Todd did a really good job of writing a unique and fantastic story. The descriptions are amazing and when reading Watermark I could really imagine the scenery in my head.

So definitely check out the Watermark Trilogy if you ever come across it. I would definitely recommend this one to anyone keen on books about self-discovery journeys and I would also say that this book has some really neat descriptions of what New Zealand is like in the wild.

The other two books in the trilogy are Dark and Zillah.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

A Dolphin in the Bay by Diana Noonan

A Dolphin in the Bay by Diana Noonan
Published: Norwood : Omnibus Books, 1993

Seb's poor eyesight makes him clumsy and fearful, but one summer, while staying at the beach, he becomes involved with a mysterious dolphin and his resulting actions resolve his fears.

My mum got this book for my sister to read one time because my sister is not that interested in reading and she liked dolphins so my mum got it for her to read. Unfortunately, she didn't bother reading it but I did.

And I really enjoyed it actually. A Dolphin in the Bay was quite a short book so it didn't take me very long to read and it was a really good book.

I am a huge mystery fan and this book has a really interesting mystery. I was wrapped up in finding out what the mystery was.

I really liked Seb, I found him to be a really relatable character and I felt sorry for him at times.

I was really happy with the whole story. The ending was really cool too.

Overall, A Dolphin in the Bay was a really really entertaining and enjoyable read. If you ever chance upon it definitely give it a flick through. It's really short so it doesn't take long to read at all. But it is definitely quality not quantity with this book.