book reviews, booktube

Memento: An Illuminae Files Novella

Memento by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff712ccb2aa16a05af938939ae61abe4e0

Rating: XXXXX

Published May 7th by Knopf books for young readers

“Ah. You have empathy for AIDAN.”
“Yes. That’s a good way of putting it.”
“Interesting.”

December, 2574. Forty-three days before the BeiTech attack on Kerenza IV. This is the story of my first friendship. This is the tale of my first murder? Some monsters are born. But I? <ERROR> I was made. 

So Memento is an 82-page Illuminae prequel novella that was a free incentive for preordering Aurora Rising only available in the US. For those in the UK like me, the only way to get a hold of a copy of these without shipping it to a US address was to order it through Good Choice reads in the US who would then ship the book and the Memento to you together. It was a little more expensive because of the shipping etc but it was absolutely worth it and also meant we were some of the first to receive the novella which was nice.

If you were lucky enough to get your hands on one but haven’t read Illuminae yet I would absolutely recommend reading the Illuminae books, or at least the first one before Memento. The Novella doesn’t really spoil much but you’ll get more out of it reading it after the first book. If you’ve read and enjoyed the Illuminae books you will love Memento, after being on the fence for so long about whether or not I would get on with the different kind of format we see in the Illuminae books it’s weird to say I missed it but I did. As soon as I saw the familiar layouts and style it felt like coming home and although I was happy with the ending of the original trilogy it left me wanting more again so a reread of them is defintley in order.

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New characters felt fresh and were easy to become attached to even in such a relatively short span of pages, we see AIDAN and the rest of the Alexander before, during and after the battle of Kerenza from different points of view. Memento follows AIDAN’s journey into what we see in Illuminae and as you can imagine if you’ve read the books it is harrowing and amazing. You can check out a video below with my reactions reading it for the first time and a spoiler-filled description of the plot if you were unable to get a hold of a copy but still want to know what happens.

Memento is not available to buy at this time and was only available through Knopf as a preorder incentive with Aurora Rising as mentioned. There are some rumours however that Rock the Boat is working on a way to get the novella here so fingers crossed as it’s well worth it.

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#SixforSunday, spoiler free

S4S – Books I want to be written

Happy Six for Sunday for a new month! The general theme for this months prompts by Steph at a Little but A Lot is Bookish Wishes and this weeks prompt is “Books I want to be Written” which at first I thought would be hard, I mean how do I know the books I want haven’t already been written? Then I realised I was over thinking it and I got on with it because my answers don’t need to be thought-provoking and groundbreaking and heck, maybe some of them already exist which is brilliant because then maybe someone can recommend them to me? Anyway, I hope you enjoy because I had fun thinking about them (and will forever daydream about at least half of them).

More Illuminae Books

This is probably fairly predictable for me (in fact I think most of these are) and usually, I’m of the belief that once a series is done that’s it but after reading Memento (the Illuminae novella) I realised that I don’t think I’ll ever get enough of that damn series. I understand that the main story is done with but I’d love to see the group grown up, maybe a kid or two of their own or something and just getting into trouble, I’m easily pleased it could be boring as hell and I’d probably still love it lets be honest.

Middle-Grade Newt Scamander Books

I want what I thought we were getting with the Fantastic Beasts films, precious, lovely, soft and sweet Newt Scamander – maybe at Hogwarts getting into innocent mischief with his creatures. I think it would really suit a middle-grade voice, maybe first-year Newt is apprehensive about leaving for school and leaving behind the creature friends he’s made at home but then finds his own place at Hogwarts? Obviously, there needs to be a little conflict to keep it interesting but that could maybe be someone might find out about one of his more misunderstood creature friends? Maybe someone does but then they become friends!? Please just give me lovely little Newt Stories.

Overwatch tie-in novels

My son discovered Overwatch recently (Me and Chris played at release and then for about a year after so we didn’t just go out and buy a shooter game for him but that’s another story) it had more variety and has a much more cartoony feel than Apex which after seeing Chris play he was determined he wanted to play too. Anyway, the point is seeing him play with the different characters (and there are LOADS) makes me really want to know more about each of them and their in-game “law.” There are brilliant animated shorts and have been some good comics but what I really want are some canon, game tie-in novels to go with it. Overwatch isn’t anywhere near as popular as it was now (understandably, it’s been out a while and there are FTP games that are very similar everywhere now) but something I would still love.

YA Greek Mythology short story collection

This might seem like a bit of a weird one that I won’t explain well (and it quite likely already exists). There are loads of myth retellings out there but after reading some sweet Hades and Persephone short stories recently I realised I would really like to read more Greek myths with the YA treatment as it were. Or maybe even some of them turned around like we’ve seen with a lot of Disney franchises over the past few years, I’d really love a new tale about Medusa. Maybe Athena helps Medusa kick Poseidon’s butt when he tries to assault her in Athena’s temple, perhaps Medusa chooses to have snakes for hair for herself that can turn all men who look upon her to stone and then she marries Athena? Maybe I just want a queer, feminist-friendly greek mythology short story anthology? WHO KNOWS?!

More Mass Effect tie-in novels

Again this isn’t a fully formed idea in any way but I will honestly read just about anything set in the Mass Effect universe. In magical Christmas land, a choose your own adventure style ME book would be AMAZING but also super difficult and probably turn out badly. I just want my Shepards story. *Cries* I actually really like the way the books have managed to not mention Shepards gender etc in the books so that it can easily be imagined as your own, hence why they could never be the main character in any of the stories. Maybe we could have more tales about the rest of the crew like we go in the Foundation comics?

Anything about Lucien Vanserra  (from ACOTAR)

So there’s a rumour that we’ll be getting a book about Lucien and the Autumn Court from Sarah J Maas. I would like that, please. I’ve been a big Lucien fan girl since reading A Court of Thorns and Roses (my first and favourite D&D character is literally named and modelled after him) and although I wasn’t keen on a lot of aspects of ACOWAR I did like the amount of Lucien development we got and I need more. SO much more, please.

Another one I came up with I decided absolutely had to exist already so I’m hoping if anyone knows of something that fits these criteria but hear me out – Six of Crows – in space. Admittedly I’ve still not finished actually reading Six of Crows but I would absolutely love to read something in that style set in space and if I can’t find it I’ll just try and write it so help me out and save me from obsessing over another WIP.

In-fact speaking of writing I feel like I could solve most of the problem of wanting to read all of the above by just writing lots and lots of fan-fiction. I guess I better get started…

 

 

 

#SixforSunday

S4S – An ode to Sci-Fi

I always thought my favourite genre was fantasy because I liked sword fights, court intrigue and magic but after reading Once and Future I now know I can have my cake and eat it as over the past few years I’ve realised I actually really like space ships and new planets, moons and stars, I like rag tag crews flying their (usually) crappy ships through the black just trying to get by and getting dragged into the wrong fight for the right reasons or vice versa, sometimes both. I love rouge A.I’s, I love cyborgs and sentient machines and advanced technology. I love Science Fiction for so many reasons and today I’ll give you six.

Science Fiction:
noun
noun: science fiction; noun: SF; modifier noun: science-fiction
Fiction based on imagined future scientific or technological advances and major social or environmental changes, frequently portraying space or time travel and life on other planets.

1. SPACE. This point kind of covers a lot of ground, space means the potential for unexplored moons and planets, unearthing ancient civilisations and finding new ones, it means somewhere for our characters to hide because DAMN space is beyond even the concept of vast and then there’s the technology required to even live and travel in space which is often a lot of fun and then there are the consequences of it as well, be that the time it takes to travel anywhere or characters perhaps being confined in close quarters to each other meaning we get a great chance for interaction where it would have been a case of simply walking away if they were somewhere that didn’t need an airlock? Oh there’s also the fact that space will almost certainly try to kill you if you mess with it too. there are just so many interesting factors brought in when dealing with space and I am nowhere near articulate enough to explain them all but I hope this makes at least a little sense.
2. THE FUTURE! Although space isn’t always a given for science fiction time is often a factor, ether travelling through it or the fact that time is needed for certain technological advances and or changes therefore almost always putting us into the future. I can’t imagine there are a lot of people out there who haven’t imagined what the future will look like in one way or another even in the simplest of terms and so this is always such a fun part, looking at the way things have changed and sometimes imagining why things have come to be as they are. A good amount of science fiction based in the future, especially the dystopian variety I think also causes us to reexamine the way we do things and what impact our actions and even day to day lives can have on our own future.  Science fiction is at it’s heart, about where we’re going and how we get there.

3. NEW TECHNOLOGY! There is a never-ending of new technology in most science fiction, some of it wonderous, some of it terrible and some of it is overlooked as an everyday occurrence. I’m not especially technologically minded myself and even I find myself inspired by the new creations we see in Science Fiction. Did you know that American inventor Simon Lake was first inspired by undersea travel and exploration ever since reading Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea and years later his company built the Argonaut which was the first submarine to operate successfully in the open ocean! OR when Martin Cooper, head of research and development at Motorola credited the communicator design from Star Trek as inspiration for his first design of the first mobile phone back in in the early 1970’s, Cooper was quoted as saying “that was not fantasy to us, that was an objective.” Not to mention influences on Atomic power, the rocket, helicopters, face time and many many more. Also just last month I had to google to find out if artificial gravity was actually a real thing…

4. TACKING BIG ISSUES! No matter when or where Science Fiction is set, often the issues that are at the heart of things can be directly tied to events that affect us in the here and now, Divergent explores early on, the repercussions of things such as stereotyping and shoe horning people into different categories and corrupt governments, much later going as far as to hold peoples genetics against each other and considering them lesser citizens for circumstances of birth which draws a frightening parallel to extreme racism and more (check out the ebook Divergent thinking for loads of great essays about this entire series) and then we have books like Enders Game which although they feature a ten-year-old main character and can easily be enjoyed as a fast paced, action packed, space fighty kind of book it is so multi-layered that it can also act as a scary close look at the ethics and accountability of modern warfare. These are two just two tiny examples, if you look closely there are a huge amount of Science Ficiton Stories out there that are no afraid to tackle big issues, even if they are disguised as an insectoid alien race.

5. ALL OF THE DEBATES AND DISCUSSIONS! Who would win in a fight, Han Solo or Captain Mal Renyolds? Could Spock beat Data at 3D Chess? Would a star destoyer or the Star Ship Enterprise win in a space battle? Is a lightsaber even possible? One of my favourite things about Science Ficiton are the discussions and debates!! I have spent COUNTLESS hours watching videos like the “Becasue Science” ones on the nerdist chanel, last week I watched one entitield “Are Alien Xenomorphs really no match for Darth Vader”, “How every Mass Effect Biotic Power works” and Could The Matrix actually be powered by human batteries?” and so on and so on. Then I go and talk about them to my friends and/or husband and some hilarious debates have come out of these, they’re fun and silly but also really get your head working.
6. NEW PROSPECTIVES! I love it when a “villains” story or prospective gets revealed and a story gets turned on it’s head, especially when the big bad is perhaps a seemingly crazy A.I or an alien race that just wants to survive, or maybe the Duplo pieces just want to be friends and play together!? (Don’t even get me started on how much I liked the new Lego Movie). These kind of reveals and reversals are one of my favourite science fiction “troupes” I love anything that can turn a story on it’s head and even better if they create moral questions and dilemmas like these often do, Star Trek has a great track history of doing this and as their crews are usually very moral people I love the turn of events this often gives the story and again it makes you think, what would you do in that situation, given that choice? I know this is something that can be present in many genres but it’s my favourite when use in Science Fiction especially.

So that ended up being a lot more involved than I thought it would so I apologise for going on, know this. I love science fiction and although those six points may suggest I love the big epics that make you think, honestly I’m such trash for space opera novels with some moral dilemmas and some good ole fighting. I’m easily pleased and happy to admit as much. Some of my favourite science fiction novels are (obviously) The Illuminae Files, Once and Future (review coming Tuesday!), The Loneliest Girl in the Universe, The Quiet at the End of the World, Skyward, Adrift, Invictus and much much more including a huge list of Star Wars, Star Trek and Mass Effect tie-in novels I won’t go in to now. Do you have a favourite Science Fiction book? Let me know!
Note: I’m aware that Star Wars isn’t technically Sci-Fi but I’m including it anyway.
 
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The Netflix Book Tag

Happy Thursday! My reading has been a bit lacking the past month due to being super busy with lots of D&D but also spending a lot of my free times in the evening watching Killjoys. I started watching it on Netflix so I figured the Netflix book tag today would be appropriate after I saw it on Jackie’s blog, the Bookish Coffee Blog I knew it was the one for me.

Recently watched: The Last Book you finished reading.

I just finished The Quiet at the End of the World and honestly, I’m trying to restrain myself and not read it again immediately because WOW. (Review coming next week!)

Top Picks: Book/Books that have been recommended to you based on what you’ve previously read.

I don’t really tend to pay attention to books I get recommended by websites very often because often I already know about them but I do remember being recommended Illuminae by everyone and everything before I finally picked it up. I’m not proud of it and I wish I had listened earlier.

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Recently Added: The Last book that you brought.

With work being a little sparse on the ground at the moment I’ve been buying a lot fewer books but there are some that I had already preordered or that I considered must-buys, one such book was The Wicked King by Holly Black and it was totally and utterly worth it. Also while writing this my husband has just informed he has brought Slayer for us both to read ❤

Popular on Netflix: Books that everyone knows about (2 you’ve read and 2 you have no interest in reading).

For the first popular book I’ve read I’ve chosen A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness as now the TV show has aired a lot more people know about it. I’ve only read the first book and I do plan to get around to the second when my schedule isn’t quite so busy!

Secondly, I’ve chosen A Court of Thorns and Roses as this book reignited my journey back into reading YA and I’m not sure I would be writing this blog right now if I hadn’t read it. It’s not my favourite book or series by far but it feels especially pivotal to me for many reasons.

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As for the books I have no interest in reading I often don’t remember the names because I have no interest in them, to be honest so I found this one difficult but picked 13 reasons why (thank you to Jackie for inspiring me here), I don’t think it’s my kind of book at all and Bloodwitch because despite how much I wanted to like Truthwitch and Windwitch I just couldn’t get on with them.

As for a second book I decided to check out “what’s popular on Goodreads” to see what is supposedly popular as I just go off my twitter feed otherwise and they are total book buying enablers >.< The first one I saw that I have no interest in reading was Children of Blood and Bone. I had a passing interest in it when I first heard about it and now it’s been so long that I’m not especially bothered about reading it now when I have so much else I need to read.

Comedies: A funny book

I don’t really read many books that would be considered especially funny but Nimona did make me laugh out loud a lot so that one takes the win for me.

Dramas: A character that is a drama Queen/King

Mal. Mal from the Grisha trilogy, he did my head in and I couldn’t stand his whining and pinning.

Animated: A book with cartoons on the cover

I thought I would pick a non-comic one for this as that would be too easy and this is technically a novel and not a comic…it’s just based around a comic book character…kind of so that doesn’t entirely count right? I adored the artwork for the cover of Captain Marvel: Liberation Run and this was the one that immediately sprung to mind, the back cover especially I really liked.

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Watch it again:
A book/book series you want to reread

I know I’ve already mentioned it and it gets mentioned in almost every single book tag that I do but I’m desperate to reread the Illuminae Files series again, I’ve been occasionally listening to the Audio Books when I’m avoiding finishing Queen of Air and Darkness at the moment.

Documentaries: A non-fiction book you’d reccomend to everyone

Do art books count? Because I love art books, especially about my favourite video games. I don’t really read many other non-fiction books. Maybe the Princess Diaries by Carrie Fisher? I really loved that.

Action and Adventure: An action packed book

Skyward by Brandon Sanderson, I don’t always follow action especially well in books, especially when it’s fast-paced but the aerial fight scenes in Skyward really stood out to me, they made sense and were described in a way that it was nice and easy to imagine it in the minds eye while reading, I found the language varied well and didn’t repeat too much either which can happen sometimes I feel, when the same activity is repeated more than a couple of times in books (see The Belles – if I ever hear about bei power again I swear…). Anyway although it’s not all action, all the time I did feel there was a healthy amount of it and certainly enough for me to class it as being action packed while still maintaining a good story.

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New Releases: A book that just came out or will be coming out soon that you can’t wait to read

Aurora Rising…becasue obviously. Like this one needs explaining?

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The Ship Tag

I found this tag via Book Princess Reviews a while back and as I’m well known in my circle of friends for shipping basically everyone and everything so I thought this would be a fun one to try out and what better time to do so then for Valentine’s Day?! (Not going to lie this was just a happy coincidence and I’m rolling with it). I tried to label each answer with any spoilers but there are technically spoilers about who gets with who in a lot of books but thats as far as any spoilers go so although this post is not technically spoiler free they are only mild spoilers.

1) If you could date a fictional character who would it be and why? Can I please date Kady AND Ezra please? I love them both so much and I wouldn’t want to separate them?

2) If you were to go on a date with said fictional character where would you go and what would you do?
I feel like there would be sweet waffles or pancakes and hamburgers? I bet Kady has some weird taste in food like she puts syrup in her burger or gherkins on her pancakes and Ezra and me are just like wha and then we try it too because we’re idiots.

3) A favourite “ship”/ couple you’ve read?
I can’t pick just one and you can’t make me.
Katherine and Matthew from The Next Together series because I love them so much and they are couple goals.
Kady and Ezra from Illuminae, I loved their relationship and dynamic together so much and that it didn’t feel too intrusive or over done.
Yelena and Valek from The Poison Study series, I wasn’t too sure about their relationship originally but it really grew on me, I love their balance of give and take as well as the real trust and teamwork they share too.
Also low key shoutout to Kieran, Mark and Christina, I’ve not finished Queen of Air and Darkness yet but my favourite thing about the entire book so far has been the beautiful relationship between these three and I’m glad to see it done well.

4) A “ship”/couple you hated?
(ToG and ACOTAR couple spoilers)
I’m not a huge fan of any of the couples in the A Court of Thorns and Roses or Throne of Glass books. I’m not sure if its the way Sarah J Maas writes but I absolutely hated Roawn with a a passion and then he’s suddenly her Caranam, which I could just about stand but then he turned out to be her mate? Ew. I enjoy some pretty unhealthy relationships in books (see next question) but for some reason I just can’t look past the way Rowan treated Aelin. I’m a little better with Rhysand and Feyre but it just makes me feel eehhh.
Ooo there is one ship I like in ToG, Dorian and Manon (Pre EoS at least as I’ve not finished that yet!)

5) A book that had the classic Hate to Love trope?
(Couple spoilers for The Cruel Prince and The Vampire Diaries)
I feel like I’ve read quite a few of them but honestly most of the time there was never any real hate, occasionally mistrust or just a general dislike, genuine hate is a bit more difficult. I would say Damon and Elena from The Vampire Diaries books? I am also SO here for the hot mess that is Jude and Cardan from The Cruel Prince and The Wicked King. I really enjoy this trope for it’s intensity and the line “Kiss me until I’m sick of it” has become one of my all time favourite quotes.

6) A book that had insta love?
A Pocketful of Crows by Joanne Harris, I love the way the insta love is played out in this little book, from the main character thinking she was too wild and untameable to ever actually love a human boy and then seeing him for the first time and falling head over heels in love with him. It’s described so well as are the consequences later which is nice and refreshing for a book featuring inst

7) A book with a light cutesie relationship?
Maybe Fangirl? That was pretty cute? I don’t read a lot of light cutsie books.

8) A book with a relationship that made you cry?
Lazlo and Sarai from Strange The Dreamer and Muse of Nightmares, they’re so beautifully tragic

9) A book without romance (or with very little)?
Vengeful and I’m so pleased for it, I like a little romance in books but I really don’t think there was room for it in this book and not having any was absolutely the right choice.

10) If you could delete one “ship” from a book who would it be and why?
Simon and Clary from the Shadowhunter books, it was painfully cringey and ironically it felt like she was dating her brother.

11) A new couple you read that you ship?
Matthew and Diana from the All Souls books, I know these aren’t a new couple technically but I only read the first book recently so they’re new to me. I like that although Matthew is partially still a ‘you must do what I tell you’ sterotypical male vampire Diana very much still does her own thing and Matthew learns to trust and value her and her opinion as she does his like a real couple and I’m really enjoying that at the moment.

#SixforSunday, spoiler free

S4S – Bookish Wishes

I’ve been trying to work on a blog post about what my three “bookish wishes” would be for almost a year now, I keep looking at the draft for a little while then giving up and closing it. Today I not only have to come up with just three wishes BUT SIX! I must stay strong and get this post finally finished so here goes nothing!

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Digging through a dusty old library (as opposed to the very awesome, much less dusty libraries you usually find today, this one is an exception) you find a heavy old book with worn but unmistakable gold sprayed pages and a simple foiled lamp printed on the cover. Upon opening the book there’s a huge puff of smoke (or maybe that’s dust, it’s very hard to tell). When your vision clears, you see a figure with messy hair tied back in a hasty ponytail with dark smudges under their eyes, desperately clutching a no longer hot cup of coffee. You recognise the fabled spirit of an author on a deadline.

“Six bookish wishes, they’re yours but be quick about it! I’m on my third round of edits, I’ve only allotted ten minutes to procrastinating and wish granting and I’ve already spent five of those looking at gifs of Adam Driver’s hair.”

1. I wish I could read for long periods of time without falling asleep. This annoys me so much, I’m loving a book and want to keep reading but the moment I get too comfortable I start to nod off. I adore reading in bed but can only manage about twenty to thirty minutes at a time before my eyelids start to droop and it drives me nuts. So let’s fix that, please.

2. I wish for more time to read. This wish is kind of two-fold, obviously I wish for the actual time to be able to read but also I wish that I would allow myself allotted time for reading, especially for books that aren’t review copies or that I’m deadline for, these books I often manage to explain away to myself as “for work” but then I begin to resent them because instead of reading them I could be reading something more of my own choosing which is sometimes silly because I only review books I choose to read but I then feel obligated to them and it’s a vicious cycle. I pretty much need Bernard’s watch.

3. I wish for an Aurora Rising ARC. I know y’all probably sick about me going on about this book by now and it’s not even out yet but I’m so crazy excited for it and they’re starting to be sent out around now I think so these bookish wishes couldn’t have come at a better time really.

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4. I wish for a satisfying and well cast TV or Film adaptions of The Illuminae Files books. What with the Grisha/SOC books by Leigh Bardugo being picked up a lot of people are wondering what the end result will be like and if it will, in turn, present an opportunity for more YA books being adapted. It’s happening a lot right now and it’s both brilliant and a little terrifying although I’d like to think I’m pretty good at separating the books from their adaptations in case of things going south. I’m aware that Plan B and Warner Bros were interested in purchasing the rights to Illuminae back in 2015 but not sure where things stand four years later so fingers crossed and we’ll see.

5. I wish for a Killjoys tie in/prequel or continuation novel of some kind. I’ll probably look back at this in a year and think “Whaa?” I tend to go through phases and at the moment I’m bingeing the SyFy show Killjoys about a group of reclamation agents (a kind of bounty hunter) in a far-flung dystopian future with a corrupt agency and government etc to boot. The dynamic of the crew and bending of the rules they love to indulge in, as well as the interesting characters they meet along the way has me completely hooked and I’ve been watching it at every opportunity (which with a three-year-old and three games of dungeons and dragons a week is not a lot) but I would really love for this kind of series in a book. I would be all over a tie in or prequel of some kind but I’m also happy for more books in the same vein, especially with a kick-ass, morally confused female character like Dutch.

6. I wish for more New Adult books. There are definitely a few books out there that could be classed as New Adult but it still hasn’t become what I could class as a proper or marketable genre yet. There’s nothing wrong at all with older readers reading YA (I wrote a whole post about it here) but, and I’m fairly certain I’m not alone here I love reading YA books, maybe it’s the way they’re written, the themes or the content but I almost always imagine the characters as older than they are which can make some parts confusing, not to mention the time of your life when you’re in your 20’s is in some ways just as pivotal as when you’re a teenager but in different ways. I’m terrible at explaining this but I hope you’ll understand what I mean?

You look back at the spirit but they are nowhere to be found. Where they ever here to begin with? Had you perhaps just inhaled a bit too much dust from the stacks? Perhaps a rather large book (probably Kingdom of Ash or Queen of Air and Darkness to be honest) fell and gave you a hefty bump to the head? Or maybe she had to get back to her writing, you had been warbling on for a bit. Ah well, you sigh, there’s no way to know for certain so you may as well carry on with your day and maybe…just maybe some of your bookish wishes will come true!

 

 

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Aurora Rising Cover Reveal and Book Tag

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Yesterday we were treated to the cover reveal for the newest book by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kauffman, Aurora Rising! Designed by Debra Bilson and illustrated by the amazing Charlie Bowater the new cover features a girl who I can only assume is Aurora herself adorned with various star constellations on a beautiful purple, black and white space background.  The details, such as Aurora’s freckles and the little ‘beauty spot’ under her right eye are fantastic, not to mention she looks like someone you absolutely do not want to mess with! You can find more details at on Jay’s blog here but below you can find the synopsis, the full cover itself AND a special book tag treat from me!

From the internationally bestselling authors of THE ILLUMINAE FILES comes an epic new science fiction adventure.

The year is 2380, and the graduating cadets of Aurora Academy are being assigned their first missions. Star pupil Tyler Jones is ready to recruit the squad of his dreams, but his own boneheaded heroism sees him stuck with the dregs nobody else in the Academy would touch…

A cocky diplomat with a black belt in sarcasm
A sociopath scientist with a fondness for shooting her bunkmates
A smart-ass techwiz with the galaxy’s biggest chip on his shoulder
An alien warrior with anger management issues
A tomboy pilot who’s totally not into him, in case you were wondering

And Ty’s squad isn’t even his biggest problem—that’d be Aurora Jie-Lin O’Malley, the girl he’s just rescued from interdimensional space. Trapped in cryo-sleep for two centuries, Auri is a girl out of time and out of her depth. But she could be the catalyst that starts a war millions of years in the making, and Tyler’s squad of losers, discipline-cases and misfits might just be the last hope for the entire galaxy.

They’re not the heroes we deserve. They’re just the ones we could find. Nobody panic.

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In celebration of my most anticipated book coming next year I decided to use the description of the new crew #Squad312 to create a brand new book tag which I hope you’ll enjoy, I’ll tag a few people but if it takes your fancy feel free to give it a go to and let me know so I can check out your answers!

First up, Squad Leader Tyler Jones – Your favourite main character
I’m usually a bigger fan of supporting characters but I hands down kind of adore Lazlo Strange from the Strange the Dreamer books. He’s a massive book nerd, gets lost in his imagination and creates beautiful dreams. Not to mention that he sounds pretty gorgeous and thanks to Steve West he sounds like a slightly huskier Orlando Bloom circa the Legolas Years.

Next, we have the Cocky Diplomat with a black belt in sarcasam – Best sassy quote
“If by fawning, you mean he’s a deer, I have a gun, and it’s hunting season, then I guess you’re right.” I believe this is from Lemons and Liars by Sage Kafsky and it kills me every time.

Now time for the Sociopath Scientist with a fondness for shooting her bunkmates – A character you love that you really probably shouldn’t.
This one was easy. The Darkling from the Grisha Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo. There’s just something about him and I know he’s really REALLY not a good guy but I can’t help it! (A.I.D.A.N gets an honourable mention because I love him but I’m not so sure we’re meant to hate him).

Not forgetting the Smart ass techwiz with the galaxy’s biggest chip on his shoulder – Favourite piece of fictional technology.
M-Bot from Skyward by Brandon Sanderson! The smart, sassy, fungi loving Artifical Intelligence inside a ship is fantastic and was my favourite part of Sanderson’s newest book out last month.

Also, an alien warrior with anger management issues – A book that made you mad.
The Island by M.A Bennett, I had to stop reading a few times because I was just so damn mad at some of the things Link did and/or got away with. Just thinking about it now is making me mad.

Annnnd A tomboy pilot who’s totally not into him, (Tyler) in case you were wondering – Favourite ‘frenemies’ to love couple.
Another easy one, Nik and Hanna from Gemina. I hated Nik’s guts to start with and hoped Hanna gave him a butt kicking but I very quickly found Hanna and myself falling for the tattoo covered, smoking idiot and now they’re one of my all-time favourite ‘ships’ which I did not see coming!

Last but by certainly no means least as her name is LITERALLY in the title Aurora Jie-Lin O’Malley, trapped in cryo-sleep for two centuries, she is a girl out of her time and out of her depth – If you could pick just one book or series to read for the rest of your life what would it be?
Is it cliche in a post promoting the new book by the same authors to say The Illuminae Files because if it is then tough. I’ve been trying so hard to resist rereading these books at the moment because I’ve got so much to get through at the moment that I couldn’t justify rereading anything at the moment but when I found I kept picking them up and just reading half of the damn things before realising I was meant to be making the bed or dinner or something I caved and am now listening to all the audiobooks…again.

That’s all folks! I’m going to tag Jay Kristoff himself (you never know!), Georgi from Niffler reads, Jeann from Happy Indulgence Books, Destiny from Howling Libraries, Jenn from Jenniely and Kate from Reading Through Infinity

Aurora Rising is due to release May 2019 so get pre-ordering now and save your receipts (especially if you’re an illuminae fan apparently!) as early next year there will be a Pre-order offer! I personally CANNOT WAIT for this book and I’ve just been screaming at all the pictures of the different ARCs and now the actual cover itself! Can I start a count down to May now??

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