Winter is once again upon us, and the best way to make it bearable is to snuggle up, be warm and cosy, and READ!
1. As per requests, read one per month from your TBR list (total of 3)…curl up with a hot chocolate and enjoy!
Brandon Sanderson – Mistborn: The Final Empire (Mistborn, #1)
Brandon Sanderson, fantasy’s newest master tale spinner, author of the acclaimed debut Elantris, dares to turn a genre on its head by asking a simple question: What if the hero of prophecy fails? What kind of world results when the Dark Lord is in charge? The answer will be found in the Mistborn Trilogy, a saga of surprises and magical martial-arts action that begins in Mistborn.
For a thousand years the ash fell and no flowers bloomed. For a thousand years the Skaa slaved in misery and lived in fear. For a thousand years the Lord Ruler, the “Sliver of Infinity,” reigned with absolute power and ultimate terror, divinely invincible. Then, when hope was so long lost that not even its memory remained, a terribly scarred, heart-broken half-Skaa rediscovered it in the depths of the Lord Ruler’s most hellish prison. Kelsier “snapped” and found in himself the powers of a Mistborn. A brilliant thief and natural leader, he turned his talents to the ultimate caper, with the Lord Ruler himself as the mark. …
(Media: Audio Book, paperback)
The world, the people, the magic systems at play in this book make it a brilliant read. I cannot wait to get stuck into the second book.
“But you can’t kill me, Lord Tyrant. I represent that one thing you’ve never been able to kill, no matter how hard you try. I am hope.”
Gail Carriger – Heartless (The Parasol Protectorate, #4)
Lady Alexia Maccon, soulless, is at it again, only this time the trouble is not her fault. When a mad ghost threatens the queen, Alexia is on the case, following a trail that leads her deep into her husband’s past. Top that off with a sister who has joined the suffragette movement (shocking!), Madame Lefoux’s latest mechanical invention, and a plague of zombie porcupines and Alexia barely has time to remember she happens to be eight months pregnant.
Will Alexia manage to determine who is trying to kill Queen Victoria before it is too late? Is it the vampires again or is there a traitor lurking about in wolf’s clothing? And what, exactly, has taken up residence in Lord Akeldama’s second best closet?
(Media: Audio Book, eBook, paperback)
I am enjoying this series and this is possibly 3.5/5 rather than 3/5. Gail Carriger writes in a humorous and quirky style. As I have mentioned before I am mentally classify this series as Paranormal Romance (PNR) not Steampunk as it does tend to veer off into a “chick lit” frolic – which is not my preferred reading material. That said I will be reading the next books in the series.
Paolo Bacigalupi – Ship Breaker (Ship Breaker #1)
In America’s Gulf Coast region, where grounded oil tankers are being broken down for parts, Nailer, a teenage boy, works the light crew, scavenging for copper wiring just to make quota–and hopefully live to see another day. But when, by luck or chance, he discovers an exquisite clipper ship beached during a recent hurricane, Nailer faces the most important decision of his life: Strip the ship for all it’s worth or rescue its lone survivor, a beautiful and wealthy girl who could lead him to a better life…
In this powerful novel, award-winning author Paolo Bacigalupi delivers a thrilling, fast-paced adventure set in a vivid and raw, uncertain future.
(Media: Audio Book, eBook)
A dark YA novel set in a dystopian future wracked with a world changed by environmental disaster, post-oil and dramatic climate-change. A good read 3.5 stars.
2. Read an Aussie authors book or books with an Aussie landscape/locale in it.
3. Pick a friend from your GR list, then select and read a book they have read. You never know, you might find something new to enjoy!
From Tracy’s Books;
Stephen Fry – The Fry Chronicles
Thirteen years ago, Moab is my Washpot, Stephen Fry’s autobiography of his early years, was published to rave reviews and was a huge bestseller. In those thirteen years since, Stephen Fry has moved into a completely new stratosphere, both as a public figure, and a private man. Now he is not just a multi-award-winning comedian and actor, but also an author, director and presenter. In January 2010, he was awarded the Special Recognition Award at the National Television Awards. Much loved by the public and his peers, Stephen Fry is one of the most influential cultural forces in the country. This dazzling memoir promises to be a courageously frank, honest and poignant read. It will detail some of the most turbulent and least well known years of his life with writing that will excite you, make you laugh uproariously, move you, inform you and, above all, surprise you.
(Media: Audio Book, eBook)
Worth listening to, but best summarised by this quote from the book
“If a thing can be said in ten words, I may be relied upon to take a hundred to say it. I ought to apologize for that. I ought to prune, pare and extirpate excess growth, but I will not. I like words – strike that, I love words – and while I am fond of the condensed and economical use of them in poetry, in song lyrics, in Twitter, in good journalism and smart advertising, I love the luxuriant profusion and mad scatter of them too.”
― Stephen Fry, The Fry Chronicles
4. Choose a favourite author, head to the Literature Map, type in the authors name, then read a book by the author closest to your fav!!
Patrick Rothfuss – The Name of the Wind (The Kingkiller Chronicle, #1)
Told in Kvothe’s own voice, this is the tale of the magically gifted young man who grows to be the most notorious wizard his world has ever seen.The intimate narrative of his childhood in a troupe of traveling players, his years spent as a near-feral orphan in a crime-ridden city, his daringly brazen yet successful bid to enter a legendary school of magic, and his life as a fugitive after the murder of a king form a gripping coming-of-age story unrivaled in recent literature. A high-action story written with a poet’s hand, The Name of the Wind is a masterpiece that will transport readers into the body and mind of a wizard.
(Media: Audio Book, eBook, paperback)
I started off listening to the audiobook version, and made it about 6 hours into the first of four parts; it was really dragging and wasn’t catching my attention. I swapped across to the paperback and raced through the book. The beginning was slow, and I see other reviews mentioning the same thing, but this is possibly the first time I have discarded the audio book.
From my understanding each book of the trilogy is one day of Kvothe telling his story to The Chronicler; so this makes sense in the way that this book ends and passes across to the next book in the trilogy. The World and magic system were interesting, but this isn’t a book you read to discover what’s going to happen as the story follows some standard fantasy tropes; this is a book that you will read to discover how things will happen.
5. Choose a New Release which will be out somewhere in the 3 month period of Winter… either purchase, or borrow from the library and enjoy!
Paolo Bacigalupi – The Drowned Cities (Ship Breaker, #2)
In a dark future America where violence, terror, and grief touch everyone, young refugees Mahlia and Mouse have managed to leave behind the war-torn lands of the Drowned Cities by escaping into the jungle outskirts. But when they discover a wounded half-man–a bioengineered war beast named Tool–who is being hunted by a vengeful band of soldiers, their fragile existence quickly collapses. One is taken prisoner by merciless soldier boys, and the other is faced with an impossible decision: Risk everything to save a friend, or flee to a place where freedom might finally be possible.
This thrilling companion to Paolo Bacigalupi’s highly acclaimed Ship Breaker is a haunting and powerful story of loyalty, survival, and heart-pounding adventure.
3.5 stars. The sequal to “Ship Breaker”. Paolo Bacigalupi serves up another dirty, gritty, futuristic, dystopian setting. A world of child soldiers, cast-offs and a society riddled with violence. This book is a lot darker, and more violent than Ship Breaker and as such I would definitely recommend it for the more mature teenage reader.
6. WINTER BLUES! Find a book related to mental health in some way (non fiction, memoir, fiction) to help us all expand our understanding.
Kathy Lette – The Boy Who Fell to Earth
Meet Merlin. He’s Lucy’s bright, beautiful son – who just happens to be autistic.
Since Merlin’s father left them in the lurch shortly after his diagnosis, Lucy has made Merlin the centre of her world. Struggling with the joys and tribulations of raising her eccentrically adorable yet challenging child, (if only Merlin came with operating instructions) Lucy doesn’t have room for any other man in her life.
By the time Merlin turns ten, Lucy is seriously worried that the Pope might start ringing her up for tips on celibacy, so resolves to dip a poorly pedicured toe back into the world of dating. Thanks to Merlin’s candour and quirkiness, things don’t go quite to plan…
Then, just when Lucy’s resigned to a life of singledom once more, Archie – the most imperfectly perfect man for her and her son – lands on her doorstep. But then, so does Merlin’s father, begging for forgiveness and a second chance. Does Lucy need a real father for Merlin – or a real partner for herself?
Kathy Lette’s style of amusing one-liners tends to distract rather than enhance the underlying story. Given the topic I was expecting a different style, this was not the case and I would classify this book as chick-lit. If you are looking for a more in depth read about an Asperger/autistic child try The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time or Born on a Blue Day.
7. Find a book with a warm, summery cover to give you the illusion of cosy in winter!
8. It’s International Children’s Day on the 13th of June. Why not find a YA novel or a picture book to read?
Eoin Colfer – The Supernaturalist
In the future, in a place called Satelite City, fourteen-year-old Cosmo Hill enters the world, unwanted by his parents. He’s sent to the Clarissa Frayne Institute for Parentally Challenged Boys, Freight class. At Clarissa Frayne, the boys are put to work by the state, testing highly dangerous products. At the end of most days, they are covered with burns, bruises, and sores. Cosmo realizes that if he doesn’t escape, he will die at this so-called orphanage. When the moment finally comes, Cosmo seizes his chance and breaks out with the help of the Supernaturalists, a motley crew of kids who all have the same special ability as Cosmo-they can see supernatural Parasites, creatures that feed on the life force of humans. The Supernaturalists patrol the city at night, hunting the Parasites in hopes of saving what’s left of humanity in Satellite City. Or so they think. The Supernaturalist soon find themselves caught in a web far more complicated than they’d imagined, when they discover a horrifying secret that will force them to question everything they believe in. Eoin Colfer has created an eerie and captivating world-part Blade Runner, part futuristic Dickens-replete with non-stop action.
This one went down well as a family driving audiobook. Not quite as strong as the Artemis Fowl series, but it will be interesting to see where this series heads from here, and with an ending like this book has it has to be the first book of a series.
9.”Winter is Coming” Read a book with a word associated with WINTER in the title…ice, cold, snow, rain, wind…
10. Read a horror/murder/thriller, something that sends CHILLS down your spine!! OR Snuggle up with a COZY mystery…
Bound off into the sunset at the end of your newest challenge….Spring is almost here!