Books · Reviews · Children's Books

Children’s Book Review: The Worst Princess (Anna Kemp/Sara Ogilvie)

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★★★★★★☆

Title: The Worst Princess
Author:  Anna Kemp    Illustrator: Sara Ogilvie
Genre: Children’s Book / Picture Book
First published: 2012
Edition: Paperback, published by Simon and Schuster Childrens Books

I was reading this feminist twist on classic fairytales to my daughter today and realised how much I love this book. It gives exactly the message that I want to impart on my five-year-old.

At the start we meet Princess Sue, who is waiting in a tower for her prince. She knows how fairytales work! When he finally shows up Sue is glad to finally get out of the tower, but her joy is short lived when he puts her in another tower. When she sees a dragon approach, she takes destiny in her own hands.

As an adult I love the obvious satire in this tale and my daughter just loves seeing this balsy princess flying away on a dragon. She has never been the fairytale princess kind of girl anyway. The only Disney princess movie she likes is Vaiana (Moana), so I guess she likes a strong independent girl! Fine by me!

I love the illustrations by Sara Ogilvie as well. Nothing is too polished, exactly like Princess Sue and I love that. A great match.

This definitely is one of my favourite picture books on my daughter’s shelf and I would recommend it to any parent of young children. Teach them that they are in charge of their own story!

6 out of 7 stars

 

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Books · Down The TBR Hole

Down the TBR Hole #5

I thought I would do another Down the TBR Hole, a very useful meme created by Lost In A Story.

Most of us bookish folk will end up with way too many books we have added as to-read on Goodreads. Try this for a solution!

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It works like this:

  • Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf
  • Order on ascending date added
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if feeling adventurous!) books
  • Read the synopses of the books
  • Decide: Keep or Go?

So, let’s have a look what we have…

The Books:

The Wrath and the Dawn (The Wrath and the Dawn, #1)1. The Wrath and the Dawn (Renee Ahdieh)

I already have this one on my Kindle, but it has been for a while. I still plan on reading it though. I think this is one of those books I will enjoy,

Verdict: KEEP

Eerie2. Eerie (C M McCoy)

Described as a paranormal teen romance, I read the synopsis for this one and I don’t think this one is for me at all.

Verdict: GO

I Wish for You3. I Wish For You (Camilla Isley)

Hmm, this looks like chick-lit with a bit of magic thrown in. The story sounds kind of cute and I don’t have (m)any pink books…. Hmmm, is that reason enough? No… I don’t think I would be reaching for this anyt time soon.

Verdict: GO

The Color of Our Sky4. The Color of Our Sky (Amita Trasi)

This sounds like a heartbreaking story. I am not sure whether I will be quite in the mood for this any time soon. I will take it off my TBR for now. I can always put it back.

Verdict: GO

Red Sister (Book of the Ancestor, #1)5. Red Sister (Mark Lawrence)

Murderous nuns? Yes please. I think I will give this one a shot at some point. But then I do want this cover, cause I don’t like the other one. I’m superficial lilke that!

Verdict: KEEP

That’s another three gone! Wahey!

Books · WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday: 21 February 2018

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That time of the week again! Time for WWW Wednesday, hosted by Sam at Taking on A World of Words.

So you just have to answer three questions:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you will read next?

So, this is my lot this week:

Marillier, Juliet - Blackthorn and Grim #1 Dreamer's PoolWhat am I currently reading?

I  started Dreamer’s Pool by Juliet Marillier. I have never read anything by her before, but two chapters in I am liking it. I meant to read a chunk of it yesterday, but my day was so full and hectic that I only managed to read 10 pages! I will be reading on today and I am looking forward to it, as I enjoyed those two chapters!

Beagle, Peter S - The Last UnicornWhat did I recently finish reading?

I finished reading The Last Unicorn by Peter S Beagle a couple of days ago. It was such a treat. If you like whimsical fantasy, you will love The Last Unicorn.

What do I think I will read next?

Sarvas, Mark - Memento ParkI have an e-ARC for Memento Park by Mark Sarvas that I really want to get to, as it sounds like a really good story. Something about a looted painting, family relations and secrets – it sounds good! Spring’s coming, so I feel like jumping into one of my non-fiction natural world books. I have one about foxes, one about otters, one about bird song…. They are all appealing to me, so I may pick one to read soon!

Which non-fiction book do you think I should read next? Foxes, otters or bird song?

1802 nature books

Please link me your WWW Wednesday!

Books · Reviews

Book Thoughts: The Last Unicorn (Peter S Beagle)

Beagle, Peter S - The Last Unicorn

★★★★★☆☆

Title: The Last Unicorn
Author:  Peter S Beagle
Genre: Fiction / Fantasy
First published: 1968
Edition: Paperback, published in 2008 by Penguin

All I can think after closing this book is how wonderfully crafted this story was. It is whimsical, but wise, beautiful and kind of dark. This is a classic fantasy tale for a reason.

The Last Unicorn has elements of myth, fairytale and folklore and the tone of the writing is spot on. It never digs too deep. It always feels like a tale and I like that. I guess that is the reason I never felt like I quite knew the characters, neither Molly, Schmendrick or the unicorn, and yet I cared for them even if I did not quite know what exactly I cared for. This is one of those books that pulls you in anyway. Though it did not have me in its thrall from beginning to end it left me satisfied and happy.

I had been meaning to read The Last Unicorn for years and I am so glad I finally did so. This book is going back on my shelf and I know it will always make me smile when I see it.

5 out of 7 stars 

Books · Reviews

Book Thoughts: Flow (Clare Littlemore)

Littlemore, Clare - Flow

★★★★★★☆

Title: Flow
Author:  Clare Littlemore
Genre: Fiction / Young Adult / Dystopian
First published: 2017
Edition: E-book, provided by author (self-published)

I sped through this novel, written from the point of view of a sixteen-year-old girl growing up in a community called The Beck. Her world is constantly threatened by floods and she has never known anything else but the Lower Beck, the area she works in. Until she gets reassigned.

This is a very well written gripping story. I got into it very quickly and was with Quin every part of the way as she learned more about The Beck. The author’s writing style is perfect for this tale; clear and to the point. Yet, this book gave me so many feels. I felt sad, angry, frustrated and heartbroken by the end, but man, was it worth it.

If you have enjoyed dystopian YA novels like The Hunger Games and Divergent, you are sure to love this one. It is well written, has an excellent plot and engaging characters. I kept thinking it would make a great movie as well.

The author provided me with an e-copy of this book, but this does not in any way influence my review. As it is, I thoroughly recommend checking this book out. It is awesome and I am looking forward to reading the sequel Break.

6 out of 7 stars

Books · Tags

Liebster Award

Thank you to Emily at her wonderful blog Reaching While Rooted for nominating me for the Liebster Award. Check out Emily’s blog, read her insightful reviews and fun tags and all that jazz. Follow her if you do not do so already!

(Apologies, Emily, that it has taken me an age to get round to answering your questions!)

Rules for Accepting the Award:

  1. Write about it on your blog and thank the person who nominated you. Write a bit about their blog.
  2. Display the ward on your blog
  3. Nominate 5 or 10 blogs which you feel deserve it
  4. Let the nominees know you nominated them.

Don’t forget to to create 10 new questions for the nominees to answer. Notify your nominees and provide a link to your post so that they will know what to do. Once you are done, come back here and post the link so I can check your answers!

Emily’s questions and my answers:

1. What inspired you to create a blog.

A friend asked me whether I had read a certain book (I can’t remember which one) to which I replied, “Yes.” Friend: “When?” Me: “Ummmm.” Friend: “What did you think of it?” Me: “I can’t quite remember…”

Basically to avoid the above, I thought it would be fun to document the books I read and what I thought of them.

2. If you could quit your day job, what would you do instead?

Well, I quite my day job four years ago (has it really been four years???!!!! Maybe three and a half…) when I decided I simply wanted to enjoy being a mum to my (now) five-year-old daughter for a while. After childcare costs I really was not earning enough to make it worth it. We are about to open a holiday cottage though, which I will be taking care of. I thought I would spend lots of time reading and I do spend some time doing just that, but my time tends to fill up anyway with all sorts of nonsense. I kind of like it that way. 🙂

3. A portal opens up to another land or time in your room. Where does it go?

Oh dead, I don’t know. Maybe Australia. I spent ten months there about fifteen years ago and fell in love with the country. There are areas I would love to explore a bit more.

4. What is your least favourite genre?

Horror. I get nightmares easily and don’t really like gore.

5. What is your favourite animal?

Horse – no contest!

6. What’s your favourite hobby when you are not reading?

I love writing, even if I am not that great at it. I love horse riding, but have not done it much in recent years. I do love watching a bit of telly of an evening too. Well, that’s about the gist of my terribly exciting life.

7. It’s time for a vacation. Who is your travel partner?

My husband and my daughter of course!

8. Do you have a life philosophy? If so, what is it?

Be yourself and and do listen to others, but don’t let them live your life for you. Be strong and don’t be afraid to say no!

9. You find a time machine and travel ten years back in time. What advice or life affirmation would you give yourself?

See question 8. It took me long enough.

10. What is one thing you love about yourself?

Oh, yeah, sure, go in with the hard question last! I love that I have learned to simply love myself. That single thing has changed so much. When you love yourself and allow yourself to make mistakes, you can be a far better support to others. No, I am not perfect, but neither as anyone else and actually, I am pretty all right 🙂 Deep, right!

***

The blogs I want to nominate are:

Marta at The Cursed Books
Kat at Crazy Life with Doc and Bam
Megan at The Cozied Reader
Regina at Bookish In Bed
Abbey at Three Cats and a Girl

And these are your questions:

1. What is your one favourite book (no whole series, a single book!)?
2. What is the first book you remember loving as a child?
3. Do you have any pets? If so, do share!
4. Pink, purple or blue?
5. Favourite ever book cover?
6. Is there a popular book you did not like?
7. What is it you like most about blogging?
8. Do you use Goodreads, and if so, how many books are on your Goodreads TBR?
9. Fairies or unicorns?
10. Lord of the Rings or Jane Austen?

I know these questions are quite random, but I would love to see your answers, so let me know when you have gotten round to doing this one!