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review 2018-05-25 18:07
‘VOX’ is the kind of dystopia that feels unnerving because it feels so familiar; hints of Atwood and Orwell, in this utterly compulsive read
Vox - Christina Dalcher

This was so good that it was one of those books I just could not put down. Being thrown into a dystopian nightmare that doesn’t seem so far-fetched is thoroughly unnerving because it’s feels entirely too familiar. We’ve read and seen a lot of imagined dystopias lately where women are quite brutally subjugated, but reading ‘VOX’ felt more subtle and thus a little more frightening.

 

‘VOX’ centers around Dr. Jean McClellan, a former doctor and professor who studied aphasia (loss of speech), and her family, and we quickly see how the new Government ‘rules’, and the ‘Pure’ Movement have affected her family. ‘Bracelets’ have been placed on all females’ wrists, and they track words spoken each day; the word counter allows them only 100 words in 24 hours and beyond that, they’ll receive electric shocks. Jean’s daughter has got to the point to where she barely speaks at all. Women can’t work anymore, use birth control, read, write, spend their own money; men have the ultimate say in everything. There are also stiff punishments for extramarital and premarital sex, even exiling and humiliating teenagers on public TV.

 

Jean is eventually called up by the very Government that has put all of this in place, for her help and expertise. The President’s brother suddenly has lost his ability to talk after an accident and they need her help, as one of the top experts in the country on aphasia. Her rather meek and quiet husband, who works for the Government, encourages her to do it, and she’s motivated by the deal of having her daughter’s word counter removed.

Does this all seem too convenient? Maybe. There are a few plot points that work out a little too easily. But it’s compulsive reading. As well as being one of those books that doesn’t feel so far away from being our truth, it’s hard not feel like this could happen to your family.
That makes it successful.

 

And the fact that we are drawn in by all the hints of other great dystopian novels written by Margaret Atwood, Naomi Alderman (just recently), or even George Orwell, so be it. There are some great action scenes in here, grand questions about how we should be living our lives, a huge argument that is playing now with the ‘Pure Movement’ concept (getting back to basics, and the religious right), and that is really why feel like Dalcher has hit the nail on the head with this. Great read!


*Thank you Penguin for my First Read! Having an early digital copy has not affected my ability to give an honest review.

Source: www.goodreads.com/book/show/37796866-vox
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text 2018-05-25 14:26
#41 Follow Friday with book bloggers: JoRead

 

 

Hello Friday! Hello Follow Friday with book bloggers! Meet Joanna, an avid reader and romance books fan, who prefers reading than eating and sleeping. Obviously. 

 

Follow JoRead on BookLikes: http://joread.booklikes.com/

 

 

What are you reading right now? How do you like it?

 

I hardly ever read more than one book at once but right now it happens that I’m reading two. The first one is a lovely ARC by the always amazing Katharine Ashe called The Prince and I’m loving it. I’m also reading Bad Bachelor by Stefanie London but only a few chapters in on that one so it’s too early to tell ;)

 

The Prince (Devil's Duke) - Katharine AsheBad Bachelor - Stefanie London

 

 

When have you discovered you’re a book lover?

 

Very early in life. I was the girl that would rather spend her time inside reading a book instead of playing outside with kids my age.

 

 

Why reading is important to you?

 

At first it was sort of an escapism. Books would take me to a different place, different time, and sometimes even different worlds. Now I’ve realized that books, regardless of genre or whether is fiction or non-fiction have always something new for me to learn. Books have taught me to understand people better because in a way I’ve been inside other people’s minds.

 

 

Which books are you most excited recommending to your followers?

 

I think people need to give romance books a chance. Romance is more than “smut” or “mommy porn,” which by the way, are terms that I loathe with the passion of a thousand suns! Romance is a genre that’s been empowering people in general (women in particular) for centuries. Depending on your tastes you could try authors Lisa Kleypas for historical stories, Penny Reid for some fun contemporary reads, and Jennifer Ashley for adventure with paranormal creatures.  

 

JoRead's Shelf

 

 

You short bio says: “If it wasn't because life gets in the way, I could spend all day reading”. How much time do you spend reading daily?

 

Dear me, hours I tell you! Hours! But who needs to eat and sleep is overrated anyway… :)

 

 

How do you find new books to read?

 

Besides Booklikes I’m part of several book groups in Facebook and Goodreads. Like-minded people tend to recommend the best books.  

 

 

We can find many romance titles on your BookLikes shelf. Do you switch between the genres or do you follow you favorite reading path?

 

I read romance the most because it’s what I like the most but I do enjoy all genres. I’ve read from Leo Tolstoy to the beautiful crafted Japanese Manga. A book is a book is a book and each one has something new to teach the reader. 

 

 

Do you read one book or several at a time?

 

I try to stick to one at a time but there are times when I cannot take my print with me so my handy eBook reader comes to the rescue. For instance, currently I’m reading Bad Bachelor in print and The Prince in eBook.  

 

joread.booklikes.com

 

 

Your bookshelf has got many thematic shelves. Does it mean you’re a well organized reader?

 

I try to be. My digital shelf is organized so because if I ever need to “pick” a book with a certain theme I can just check that shelf and voilà! All at the click of a key :)

 

 

A library or a bookstore?

 

Tough question. Bookworms should never be made to choose.

 

 

What are your three favorite book covers?

 

Eek! I have lots! No way I could choose only 3. How about I give you the three that come to mind right away ;) 

 

Leviathan - Scott Westerfeld,Keith ThompsonLady in Red - Maire ClaremontWonder Woman: Warbringer (DC Icons Series) - Leigh Bardugo

 

 

 

A paper book or an e-book?

 

Both. Well, I love prints and if I’d have more place at home all of my books would be in print but I love the simplicity of format of an eBook. You can literally have hundreds of books in the palm of your hand!

 

 

Three titles for a holiday break?

 

Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card, The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho, Northanger Abbey - Jane Austen

 

The Alchemist - Paulo Coelho

 

 

 

Favorite quote?

“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” ~ Albert Einstein

 

 

If you could pair a book with a drink, what would you prepare to sip while reading?

 

I’d read Jennifer Ashley’s Lady Isabella’s Scandalous Marriage while sipping Earl Grey tea. Yep, that would hit the spot.

 

 

Shelfie time! Please share your home library photos :)

 

My apartment is really small so most of my books are in boxes *sad face*

But here is a pic of the books I have on hand because I’m planning on reading them or have read recently.

 

 

Thanks! This was lots of fun! 

 

Thank you!

 

*

Have you missed previous Follow Friday talks? Use ffwithbookbloggers tag or click the catch up links below: 

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text 2018-05-24 21:06
Works on BookLikes - an update

 

Hey all readers, authors, publishers, avid readers, all book lovers!

 

Just wanted to confirm that the IT works on BookLikes will continue, however, they should not affect your BookLikes experience.

 

If you still encounter the difficulties on our site it maybe because your browser does not recognize the updates we've been doing. Please do consider clearing your browser's cache memory. 

 

If clearing the cookies won't change your BookLikes experience, please feel free to let us know, mail Kate@booklikes.com . You can mail Kate with any other queries as well :)

 

Happy reading and BookLiking! 

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review 2018-05-24 03:15
One of the most-hyped YA fantasy novels of the year so far is out: does it deliver?
Furyborn - Claire Legrand

One of the most hyped books of 2018, with not one, but two versions of early review copies sent out to reviewers and booksellers months in advance, some with a special promo box, 'Furyborn' has been primed for its release for (I'm hazarding a guess) about 8 months now. Every blogger and reviewer I know has wanted to get their hands on a copy of this book to read and review (and likely have the 'one with the artwork on the cover' in their permanent collection) because it is THE book on everyone's blog, and the 'must-read fantasy series of 2018', according to blurb on the back of the book. The publicity campaign has done a rip-roaringly good job to get everyone on board. So does it live up to the hype? Those are high stakes these days when YA fantasy is the genre to reel everyone in.

 

The premise is grand: two young women, one thousand years apart from each other, hold the immense power that will either save their world or doom it. Each one is either the queen of light and salvation, or the queen of blood and destruction, according to prophecy: which one is the Sun Queen, and who is the Blood Queen?


Rielle Dardenne must endure seven trials to test her magic, which she has been hiding since was a child, and prove herself to be in control of her elemental powers, or she will be executed. Then, some thousand years later, Eliana Ferracora is the counterpart to would-be Queen Rielle. She is a bounty hunter and assassin, known as the ‘Dread of Orline’, and she goes on a mission to find her mother who has been taken along with countless other women, in the violent empire of Ventera. Eliana has had to join a rebel captain, the ‘Wolf’, to get to the heart of the disappearances. And while Rielle knew of her powers for many years, Eliana is just coming to terms with her magic, the power that her body has to heal itself. These two storylines and timelines alternate back and forth throughout the novel, between Rielle and Eliana, and don’t seem to relate to each other; the only thing binding them together throughout is talk of the Sun and Blood Queen .

 

So I’ll be honest: it was really hard for me to connect to ‘Furyborn’, and I dipped in and out of the book for a while and read several complete other books at the same time, which is unusual for me. It’s only at about halfway through the book that I became more invested in the story and the characters (and then only somewhat), and then I reserved my time solely to this book. For a long book (512 pages), having to read half of it to get invested, is close to reading a whole shorter-length YA novel, so that’s a lot of reading to try and see what all the fuss is about. It’s not to say there wasn’t any action happening on those pages; it just felt like it wasn’t going anywhere. I couldn’t even put my finger on why I felt like the action wasn't ‘happening’, but I rarely ever skim through words on a page but sometimes I wanted to because the same stuff seemed to keep repeating itself.


I was also getting tired of the back and forth between the two storylines; maybe if the reader got to sit with one of the characters longer, a better connection could be felt. I personally felt like you never are given a true feeling for the actual relationships in this book because you can never stay with them long enough to connect with them.
Both lead characters lack the real spunk or inner beauty that I feel they needed to shine through as deserved heroines, so maybe that was what held me back from truly loving their stories. I didn’t feel like either of them were pulling me through to the finish line.

Despite the world-building and the pretty fascinating underbelly of this novel built on dark angels and visions, which are pretty good openings for some amazing subplots, as well as the thrilling opening to the book ‘An End, and a Beginning’, I don’t feel like ‘Furyborn’ delivered for me.


Legrand is a dynamic author and her lyrical writing skills make much of what you read look like poetry. But I don’t like feeling as though a book is 100 pages longer than it needs to be, just so a book is an ‘epic fantasy novel’. I also wanted more time (but not with extra pages) to get to know these characters so I could connect to them. I hate feeling like I’m writing all of this and it will be an unpopular opinion, but I think this could have been so much better, because this was a ‘big one’, but I’ll be reaching, not for the sequel of this, but for Legrand’s ‘Sawkill Girls’ next.

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text 2018-05-23 21:59
12 Books To Read If You Miss The Royal Wedding

 

Can't get enough of the royal wedding? Miss the royal atmosphere already? Here come books to the rescue! Check out 12 titles which will transfer you into the royal setting and wedding-to-come (or not) story line. 

 

The Runaway Princess by Hester Browne 

Buy it

The Princess Diaries meets Runaway Bride in this wonderful novel about a London career girl who embarks on a whirlwind romance with a mysterious man--only to discover that he's a prince.

 

 

Bookworm Dreams REVIEW: If you want to know 100 reasons why you should not date (or God forbid) marry a prince and you like chick lit novels with quirky characters and English humor, then The Runaway Princess might be the book you are looking for... READ MORE

 

 

Royal Wedding: Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot 

Buy it

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Princess Diaries series, comes the very first adult installment, which follows Princess Mia and her Prince Charming as they plan their fairy tale wedding--but a few poisoned apples could turn this happily-ever-after into a royal nightmare.

 

 

Kaethe REVIEW: Cabot successfully translates her YA heroine into a twentysomething involved in politics, celebrity, TMZ, stalkers, a weird family, and plenty more. I loved it. My 16-year-old, who had left off reading the Princess Diaries around volume 7 or 8, loved it. Really, just a tremendously fun book... READ MORE 

 

 

The Royal Runaway by Lindsay Emory 

Buy it

Filled with intrigue, romance and mystery, Lindsay Emory's The Royal Runaway will whisk you away on a romantic, glamorous and royal adventure. For fans of The Princess Diaries and The Royal with a splash of James Bond, The Bourne Identity.

 

Princess Theodora Isabella Victoria of Drieden of the Royal House Laurent is so over this princess thing. After her fiance jilted her on their wedding day, she's finally back home after spending four months in exile - aka it's back to press conferences, public appearances, and putting on a show for the Driedish nation as the perfect princess they expect her to be. But Thea's sick of duty. After all, that's what got her into this mess in the first place. So when she sneaks out of the palace and meets a sexy Scot named Nick in a local bar, she relishes the chance to be a normal woman for a change

 

 

A Princess in Theory by Alyssa Cole / Buy it

A Duke by Default by Alyssa Cole  / Buy it

From acclaimed author Alyssa Cole comes the tale of a city Cinderella and her Prince Charming in disguise. The chemistry between them is instant and irresistible, and flirty friendship quickly evolves into passionate nights. But when the truth is revealed, can a princess in theory become a princess ever after?

 

 

The Royal We by Jessica Morgan, Heather Cocks 

Buy it

Celebrate Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's wedding with this "fun and dishy" (People) royal romance about an American girl finding her prince.

American Bex Porter was never one for fairy tales. Her twin sister Lacey was always the romantic, the one who daydreamed of being a princess. But it's adventure-seeking Bex who goes to Oxford and meets dreamy Nick across the hall - and Bex who finds herself accidentally in love with the heir to the British throne.

 

 

So many books so little time REVIEW: I feel like this is a great summer read.  There is witty banter, lovey doveyness and cooky characters so I found it rather enjoyable.  It is the perfect book if you are in  the mood for a chuckle... READ MORE

 

 

The Royal Wedding by Melanie Summers, MJ Summers 

Buy it

Don't miss the irresistibly funny conclusion of The Crown Jewels Romantic Comedy Duo for fans of both Bridget Jones and The Princess Diaries…When most girls get engaged, at most they face a disapproving mother-in-law, but in Tessa Sharpe’s case, it’s a disapproving nation.

 

 

Royals by Rachel Hawkins 

Buy it

Daisy Winters, average sixteen-year-old, has no desire to live in the spotlight - but it's not up to you when your perfect older sister is engaged to the Crown Prince of Scotland. The crown - and the intriguing Miles - might be trying to make Daisy into a lady, but she may have to rewrite the royal rulebook.

 

 

sunsetxcocktail REVIEW: This book was like a giant rom-com cliché. The alternate history for the Royal family was eye rolling and cringe worthy. That being said once you over look those things, it was actually a very entertaining read. Irritating as hell, but fun... READ MORE

 

 

Royally Hung by Anne Marsh 

Buy it

Fairy tales always have a Prince Charming and a bad guy. In real life, Prince Charming is the bad guy and his favorite happy ending is the big O.
I'm Prince Dare but you can call me Prince Charming. Cinderella never wanted the prince--she wanted a night out, a banging dress, and some midnight fun. I deliver that. I make being bad look way more fun than being good, and no one leaves my royal bed without a happy ending.

 

 

Hopeless Romantic REVIEW: Forget the tale we think we know. Royally Hung is a new kind of fantasy. The charming prince is a royal jerk with a chip on his shoulder and an appetite for the naughty side of life. Dare is no walking dream, but he does have a few surprisingly sweet attributes... READ MORE

 

 

Suddenly Royal by Nichole Chase 

Buy it

Samantha Rousseau is used to getting her hands dirty. Working toward a master's degree in wildlife biology while helping take care of her sick father, she has no time for celebrity gossip, designer clothes, or lazy vacations. So when a duchess from the small country of Lilaria invites her to dinner, Samantha assumes it's to discuss a donation for the program. The truth will change the course of her life in ways she never dreamed.

 

 

Claire loves to read! REVIEWLoved it, really well written and fun... READ MORE

 

 

A Kiss at Midnight by Eloisa James 

Buy it

Miss Kate Daltry doesn't believe in fairy tales . . . or happily ever after.

Forced by her stepmother to attend a ball, Kate meets a prince . . . and decides he's anything but charming. A clash of wits and wills ensues, but they both know their irresistible attraction will lead nowhere. For Gabriel is promised to another woman—a princess whose hand in marriage will fulfill his ruthless ambitions.

 

 

Rachel's books REVIEW: I enjoyed this retelling of Cinderella. Like every historical, it is predictable (but isn't that part of the reason we love them? Well, most/some of them!) I enjoyed the journey and HEA... READ MORE

 

 

To Marry a Prince by Sophie Page 

Buy it

 

Can an ordinary girl survive preparations for her very own Royal Wedding? Bella Greenwood isn't a fairytale girl. If pushed, she'd probably tell you that her perfect wedding would involve a handful of close friends and family. But as she's never met anyone she'd like to marry, it is a moot point. Until, in a midnight garden, Bella is helped out of an embarrassing situation by a tall, dark, handsome man with laughing eyes. Suddenly her life changes for ever, because the man is the world's most eligible bachelor—Prince Richard, heir to the throne.

 

 

If you'd like to have all the titles on your bookshelf go to the Royal Wedding Books Reading List and click Add all books to your shelf. 

 

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