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text 2015-01-16 21:33
AN EMBER IN THE ASHES by Sabaa Tahir - Excerpt reveal & Giveaway!

Hey GCReaders!

I am seriously sitting here jumping with excitement! MTV shared an excerpt of AN EMBER IN THE ASHES by Sabaa Tahir today, and reading it reminded me of why I LOVED this book so, so, so, much!

Good Choice Reading, along with some other amazing bloggers, will be sharing a lot of post about AN EMBER IN THE ASHES leading up to it's release on April 28th!

Penguin Group/Razorbill has also thrown in an awesome prize for one lucky reader! All you have to do is follow along and enter via the rafflecopter. The giveaway is open all month long!

First, here is a little bit about the book that I am raving about...

Set in a terrifyingly brutal Rome-like world, An Ember in the Ashes is an epic fantasy debut about an orphan fighting for her family and a soldier fighting for his freedom. It’s a story that’s literally burning to be told.

LAIA is a Scholar living under the iron-fisted rule of the Martial Empire. When her brother is arrested for treason, Laia goes undercover as a slave at the empire’s greatest military academy in exchange for assistance from rebel Scholars who claim that they will help to save her brother from execution.

ELIAS is the academy’s finest soldier—and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias is considering deserting the military, but before he can, he’s ordered to participate in a ruthless contest to choose the next Martial emperor.

When Laia and Elias’s paths cross at the academy, they find that their destinies are more intertwined than either could have imagined and that their choices will change the future of the empire itself.

Pre-order today! 
You won't regret it!
Leave a comment below telling us your thoughts on the first two chapters! What did you think? 
Head over to Good Choice Reading for a chance to win!
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review 2015-01-07 00:23
All The Bright and Wonderful and Dark and Horrible and Amazing Places...
All the Bright Places - Jennifer Niven

All The Bright Places is just one of those bowl you over, knock you for six books. It is wonderful and heartbreaking and … just …. Arghhh!


It’s difficult to write a coherent review because it should be done with the least amount of spoilers as possible. But I want to write about all the amazing and awful things, I am in serious need of an All The Bright Places wordvomitfest (like my new word?). I will try to keep it limited though while still providing you with all the reason to read it – wow reviewing can be hard!


All The Bright Places is the story of Violet Markey, dealing with the death of her sister, and Theodore Finch, who has an obsession with suicide that traces back to an abusive and neglectful past but just hasn’t brought himself to do it yet. They meet in the bell tower where Finch talks Violet out of jumping. Two very broken souls come together and it could either be the start of something magical, or something heartbreaking.


This book covers some heavy topics – its characters are both dealing with depression of different kinds and when they fall in love they not only have to deal with their own problems but each other’s while never asking for or receiving the help they really need from parents or teachers or counsellors. All they have is what they have found in each other and I spent the majority of the book hoping it would be enough. I have never wanted a fictional couple – or any couple, really – to be together so much and not only that, to be able to stay together against all odds. I wished, unrealistically, for them to fight harder, to want to survive. I hate suicide stories but I read so many of them because I’m looking for not necessarily a happy ending, but an ending that will convince likeminded people to stay. I just want them to stay.


Both Violet and Finch were such real characters who felt so alive which I think is why it got to me. They felt as if they could have been people I knew or had once met or even just passed in the street. From their adventures through Indiana that brought out the wandering nature in me, to their poignant moments with each other, to their interactions with their families and peers, everything about them felt real to me. I could have read a neverending book about Finch and Violet. I loved them even when I was annoyed, and when I tried to understand what they were going through but felt like I must have just been missing it, and when I was begging them to stay, I loved Finch and Violet all throughout this book. Jennifer Niven has crafted some wonderful characters and a poignant, moving story I won’t forget in a hurry. There were moments when they frustrated me, especially Finch, as much as I tried to understand him I just wanted to shake him and yell at him to GET HELP.


So please, if you ever feel depressed, if you ever experience something like this, like Violet or Finch or even something different – there are places you can go and people you can go to for help. You are never alone.


If you only read one contemporary this year, make it this one.

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review 2014-12-11 09:12
Modern fairytale retelling set in a theatre boarding school
The Rapunzel Dilemma - Jennifer Kloester

Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for providing this book in exchange for an honest review. This did not influence my review in any way.

So me and this book had a few troubles. After being approved on Netgalley (which took so long it was already out by the time I was) I realised from reading other reviews that though it is a companion novel, The Cinderella Moment should be read before The Rapunzel Dilemma. Considering I’d been planning on reading it anyway I thought I would track it down, shouldn’t be too hard, right? Except Dymocks didn’t have it in so I had to wait a week for it to come in. So then I got it, finally, read it in a day. All good. I start The Rapunzel Dilemma that night only to get thirty pages in to my galley and encounter a blank page in the middle of a chapter and the next couple of pages seemingly out of order. Close Adobe Editions, open it again, restart laptop – nothing worked. And I couldn’t re-download it from Netgalley because I’d taken so long to get around to it that it had been archived. Great. However, I refused to be beaten and the next time I was in the city (Thursday) I bought myself a paperback copy (as well as some other goodies, because I can). I finished the book I’d moved on to and FINALLY I was on my way.

The Rapunzel Dilemma picks up a few weeks after the happy ending of The Cinderella Moment. Lily has convinced her father that he should let her attend the London Drama Academy, an idea he was not too keen on to begin with. But he has made her a deal: he will allow her three years at the Academy and then she will have to step into her role in the family business. She begrudgingly agrees, for now, and receives a rare audition for the Academy. Instantly, her new classmates believe that it is Lily’s money and connections that have got her there and as you can imagine they are livid. I would be too and I don’t blame them at all. So for the first time ever life is not easy for Lily de Tourney and she finds that at the Academy her status and privilege mean nothing other than being able to purchase an expensive bedspread to rub her roommates’ noses in (not literally!) which really is not going to make them like you any more than before. The classes are difficult, too, and Lily is also learning that even though she loves acting, she might not actually be as good as she thinks she is.

As well as handling all the drama of being the rich kid nobody likes, someone is also trying to sabotage Lily’s new friendships and things start to go missing, get ruined and trashed and all fingers point to Lily, even though she’s getting menacing letters in her locker. Oh wait, don’t forget the love interest! Cue entry of mysterious, angsty, good looking boy from the other side of the tracks.

The Rapunzel parallels are in Lily’s long blonde locks and the Tower in which she seeks refuge from the students who dislike her, the sabotage and from her teachers’ harsh (but in my opinion deserved) criticism. Basically, there’s a reason no one likes Lily. She is spoiled and privileged and has no idea about the real world and what goes on in it. Even when she recognises this she doesn’t change her attitude so it is hard to like her. She is incredibly naïve and I couldn’t believe that she didn’t realise that obviously she had help getting her audition at the Academy. I could still feel the fairytale element in this story but not quite as well, although overall I enjoyed it more than I did The Cinderella Moment. There were few parallels in the flow of the two stories, particularly in misunderstandings with the respective love interests and another rushed conclusion where everything is tied up with a neat bow in the last thirty pages or so.

So what did I like? Because I did like it, even though I didn’t like Lily, didn’t really like the romance and didn’t like how rushed the conclusion was. Wait….did I like this? Well, I did. I liked the boarding school setting and I liked the friendships, especially Angel and Lily’s friendship and how Lily had to more or less learn how to make friends with people who didn’t like her. I thought the blossoming friendships with her roommates were sweet but I didn’t particularly care for Max much at all, despite the fact that he was the first one to befriend her. Hands down my favourite character is still Grandmama, who has a more subtle role in this story but makes an appearance nonetheless. I completely understand Grandmama even when Lily doesn’t – imagine finding your 16-year-old granddaughter at a hotel in the English countryside and meet her male companion wearing nothing but a towel! Even if he had been the most upperclass young man ever she still would have thrown a fit (you would hope, in the name of good grandparenting) despite it all being a case of misunderstanding. Surely Lily and Ronan would realise that? But it’s a fairytale! There needs to be conflict for a nice resolution.

And look it was a nice, if somewhat unrealistic, resolution. It was a fairly enjoyable read and the ending was nice, but on further thought I have dropped my rating from 4 stars to 3.5. It wasn’t spectacular but it was a nice and light, fluffy read.

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review 2013-12-14 16:22
The Fiery Heart by Richelle Mead

The Fiery Heart

Author: Richelle Mead
Publisher: Razorbill
Publication Date: November 19, 2013
Goodread♥ Amazon
Bookish Confession: I don’t pre-order books. If I want a book I’ll buy it the day it comes out or wait a couple weeks. I’ve only pre-ordered 2 books and one of them is The Fiery Heart. I was excited that the novel would have both Sydney and Adrian’s perspectives. I expected new insight in to their characters, and more action. Instead I got something totally different and was a little disappointed by The Fiery Heart.
I was the most about reading this story from Adrian’s perspective. Adrian has been my favorite character in the Vampire Academy/Bloodlines series since Rose met him in Frostbite. Adrian is witty, understanding, moody, artsy. I expected his thoughts to reflect the character I have come to love. Instead Adrian felt like a different person. His thought’s weren’t witty and funny, occasionally some of the things he said were cute and I chuckled but the camaraderie I felt with his character when the books were from Sydney’s perspective was missing. It was almost like Adrian had to think of an Adrian response to a situation and then say the words rather then having them flow naturally. It’s a hard thing to explain but I just expected something more from Adrian then what I got.
I also thought this installment lacked the action of the previous novels. There was a lot of planning, talking, kissing, avoiding Sydney’s sister, and more planning. The entire plot led up to the last scene which, because of painful amounts of foreshadowing, could be seen coming a mile away. This novel felt like a set up for the next one. There were also huge sections devoted to information dumps about the plot line from previous books. Don’t get me wrong, I like a little bit of a reminder, but it felt like the first 70 pages were a re-cap of what had already happened. 
I did like that there was a lot of kissing in The Fiery Heart. Sydney and Adrian are a couple you really want to root for. They’ve got so much working against them and still they are crazy about one another. I like that because of her relationship with Adrian, Sydney has changed so much throughout this series. It was interesting to have Zoe there as a reminder of just how much Sydney’s Alchemist beliefs have changed. 
Overall, I enjoyed The Fiery Heart and will definitely be picking up the sequel, Silver Shadows, especially after that terrible cliff we were left on. I hope that in the next book Adrian feels more natural, and Sydney can stay strong because I have a feeling the next novel will be intense.
Source: www.fallingforya.com/2013/12/the-fiery-heart-by-richelle-mead_14.html
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review 2013-11-26 05:42
MICHELLE'S REVIEW: Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea by April Genevieve Tucholke
Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea - April Genevieve Tucholke

I found it very hard not to be intrigued by this book when it came popping up on GoodReads. For one, the title alone was enough to convince me that I absolutely needed this. Then out of the blue (Was that a pun? Why yes, I believe it was!) I remembered this The Killers song that had a line that had these words on it. I know that the title is obviously a saying, but there's nothing like humming Spaceman every time I see the title. Second, just look at that totally gorgeous Gothic-looking cover, and the teeny tiny humans on the cliff. They look like they're dancing, despite the grim and dangerous theme of their surroundings. The girl obviously looks like she's having fun flirting with danger, and I love the whimsical detail it poses. Third, the summary. Goodness knows how obsessed I am when it comes to horror and very unconventional romances. I have been disappointed time and time again by awesome-sounding books, but thankfully, that was not the case with this one.

Just like the evil River West, Between the Devil and The Deep Blue Sea is a total charmer.

With their bohemian-living parents away, Violet rents out one of the rooms in her grandmother's sprawling yet fading estate to be able to feed herself and her brother Luke. And who else rents it but the mysterious River West who seems to make Violet's heart race and whose grin almost makes her forget about the strange happenings around town. But when the gruesome and macabre goings-on start to hit closer to home, Violet starts to realize that her grandmother's warnings about the devil may not have been utter poppycock at all.

Violet would be the perfect embodiment of those shabby-chic girls you spot in magazines. She goes around wearing her grandmother's clothes with a devil-may-care attitude (I swear I am not making these puns on purpose. They just come rather naturally.) in her opulent yet faded grandmother's property, and she doesn't seem to give a rat's butt about what people think or say about her. Personality-wise, she reminded me a lot of Petunia from the webcomic Todd Allison and the Petunia Flower. While she's mostly smart with her dealings with River West, you just can't really fault her when she goes weak in the knees because, dear reader, you will too! I couldn't muster any love for Warner of Tahereh Mafi's Shatter Me, nor any for Darkling of Leigh Bardugo's Shadow and Bone, but I could understand why Violet fell under the spell of River West, despite him possibly being more psycho than Darkling. People, this guy is a real nut job, but a nut job I will confess to being enraptured with. Seriously. You want a really bad boy? Meet River West. I seriously didn't think I had it in me to be fascinated by a bad boy, but he's just so darn charming! River will remind you of a very mischievous cat playing with a mouse; it's not really intentional if the mouse ends up dead.

What I love about Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea is that it does away with your whole black-and-white version rendition of good and evil. Instead, readers are subjected to a murky gray that will undoubtedly be good material for some self-reflection.

Also, Tucholke's writing will not clue you in that this novel is her first. She is good at pacing, and is adept in creating curious - and sometimes horrific - events that effectively counter the idyllic scenarios readers witness. 

Was the novel a bit insta-love-y, however? A little, but if you've given proper thought, it doesn't appear to be that way. Well, not on purpose anyway, and that is good enough for me.

If you like creepy books and are curious about a devil who doesn't know which side he's on, I cannot recommend this book enough. Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea balances perfectly well the romance as well as the Gothic horror, making it equally appealing to horror-lovers and romance aficionados alike!

Now, being a new Tucholke fan, I'll just have to languish a little bit every day like the others as I wait for the second book, Between the Spark and the Burn, which comes out in August 2014...

Source: thetwinsread.blogspot.com/2013/11/michelles-review-between-devil-and-deep.html
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