Sunday, 20 September 2020

A Neon Darkness by Lauren Shippen

The second Bright Sessions novel from creator Lauren Shippen that asks: "What if the X-Men, instead of becoming superheroes, decided to spend some time in therapy?"

Los Angeles, 2006. Eighteen-year-old Robert Gorham arrives in L.A. amid the desert heat and the soft buzz of neon. He came alone with one goal: he wants to see the ocean. And Robert always gets what he wants.

At a very young age, Robert discovered he had the unusual ability to make those close to him want whatever he wants. He wanted dessert instead of dinner? His mother served it. He wanted his Frisbee back? His father walked off the roof to bring it to him faster. He wanted to be alone? They both disappeared. Forever.

But things will be different in L.A. He meets a group of strange friends who could help him. Friends who can do things like produce flames without flint, conduct electricity with their hands, and see visions of the past. They call themselves Unusuals and finally, finally, Robert belongs.

When a tall figure, immune to their powers, discovers them, the first family that Robert has ever wanted is at risk of being destroyed. The only way to keep them all together is to get his powers under control.

But control is a sacrifice he might not be willing to make.

A Neon Darkness is the origin story of Damien and the second stand-alone story in the Bright Sessions Novels.

#Roundup!

Good morning all! Here is this week's Weekly Roundup, made with love for you.

Saturday, 19 September 2020

Dear Hero by Hope Bolinger and Alyssa Roat

Cortex and V need a new nemesis. Cortex's last villain dumped him, and V got a little overeager and took out her hero prematurely. They meet on Meta-Match, a nemesis pairing site for heroes and villains. After throwing punches at each other behind coffee shops and hiring henchman to do their bidding (mostly just getting them coffee), they realize they have a lot more in common than meets the eye. And they may have a lot more hero and villain inside than they realize.

A Curse of Gold by Annie Sullivan

Curses and queens. Pirates and kings. Gods and magic. The final saga of a cursed queen, a vengeful Greek god, and a dazzling kingdom in the balance.
After barely surviving thieving, bloodthirsty pirates and a harrowing quest at sea to retrieve her stolen treasure, Kora finds readjusting to palace life just as deadly. Kora’s people openly turn against her, threatening to overthrow her as heir to the throne—a cursed queen who has angered Dionysus. When Dionysus puts out a challenge to kill the girl with the golden touch and burn down her kingdom, it’s not just her future on the throne in danger. Kora’s life and entire kingdom are now on contract.

As bold and brave as ever, Kora sets out to find Dionysus, the very person who is trying to kill her, on the mysterious disappearing island of Jipper. Kora has no other choice. If she wants to save her kingdom and have any chance at reversing her father’s curse, she will have to enter into a deadly game with Dionysus, the greatest trickster the world, or the underworld, has ever seen.

Friday, 18 September 2020

Knee Deep by Karol Ann Hoeffner

Named after a hurricane, Camille is the rebellious sixteen-year-old daughter of a New Orleans bar-owner who grows up in the shadow of Bourbon Street, raised on stories of hauntings, lusty encounters and voodoo magic. And even though her family loses their home in a hurricane, she counts herself among the lucky until she discovers that her eighteen-year-old neighbor whom she secretly loves goes missing in the storm.

In Camille's own words: "This is the story of what happened to me on Fat Tuesday, how I ended up on the steps of St. Mary’s, the hem of my pirate’s petticoat soaked in somebody’s else’s blood. Although I know the story to be true, I don’t totally believe it myself. Like all good tales born out of the bayou, mine involves the dead, the living and the one trapped in the brackish waters between heaven and hell. It is the story of true love and true disaster, and at the end of it, I’ll leave it up to you to decide which is the harder to survive."

Five Wives Giveaway!

Thursday, 17 September 2020

Wee Donkey's Treasure Hunt by Erika McGann and Gerry Daly

A wee donkey sat in the shade of a tree.
'If you had one wish, Grandad, what would it be?'
'I'd fix this old back and these wobbly knees,
and go see the sights that are out there to see.'

The wee donkey thought, 'I can't turn back the years,
but I can get Grandad some great souvenirs.'
She slipped through the gate with a small wooden cart,
in search of some gifts that would warm Grandad's heart.

The wee donkey heads across Ireland, where she "borrows" the Jeanie Johnston ship from the Liffey, the round tower from Glendalough, kisses from the Blarney Stone and more, to bring to her grandad.
But you can't go taking national treasures like that, particularly when the police find out! A warm and entertaining picture book from the team who brought you Where Are You, Puffling?

Happy #BookBirthday!

Happy Thursday, everyone! It's time for another #BookBirthday post, and this was a busy week! NINE books on our lists published this week.

Wednesday, 16 September 2020

Vampires Never Get Old, by Many

In this delicious new collection, you’ll find stories about lurking vampires of social media, rebellious vampires hungry for more than just blood, eager vampires coming out―and going out for their first kill―and other bold, breathtaking, dangerous, dreamy, eerie, iconic, powerful creatures of the night.

Welcome to the evolution of the vampire―and a revolution on the page.

Vampires Never Get Old includes stories by authors both bestselling and acclaimed, including Samira Ahmed, Dhonielle Clayton, Zoraida Córdova and Natalie C. Parker, Tessa Gratton, Heidi Heilig, Julie Murphy, Mark Oshiro, Rebecca Roanhorse, Laura Ruby, Victoria “V. E.” Schwab, and Kayla Whaley.

The Monsters of Rookhaven by Pádraig Kenny

'Humans, as is there wont, have a terrible habit of making a mess of everything.'

Mirabelle has always known she is a monster. When the glamour protecting her unusual family from the human world is torn and an orphaned brother and sister stumble upon Rookhaven, Mirabelle soon discovers that friendship can be found in the outside world.

But as something far more sinister comes to threaten them all, it quickly becomes clear that the true monsters aren't necessarily the ones you can see.

Tuesday, 15 September 2020

October, October by Katya Balen and Angela Harding

October and her dad live in the woods. They sleep in the house Dad built for them and eat the food they grow in the vegetable patches. They know the trees and the rocks and the lake and stars like best friends. They read the books they buy in town again and again until the pages are soft and yellow - until next year's town visit. They live in the woods and they are wild.

And that's the way it is.

Until the year October turns eleven. That's the year October rescues a baby owl. It's the year Dad falls out of the biggest tree in their woods. The year the woman who calls herself October's mother comes back. The year everything changes.

#Bookpost! week ending 15th September 2020

Happy Tuesday, everyone! We had a busier week this week, but our overall TBR is still going down...but the Spring books will be out soon, and then watch out!

As always, click on the cover to be taken to Goodreads or the publisher's website, and we've added notes under one or two titles.

Monday, 14 September 2020

The Art of Saving the World by Corinne Duyvis

When Hazel Stanczak was born, an interdimensional rift tore open near her family’s home, which prompted immediate government attention. They soon learned that if Hazel strayed too far, the rift would become volatile and fling things from other dimensions onto their front lawn—or it could swallow up their whole town. As a result, Hazel has never left her small Pennsylvania town, and the government agents garrisoned on her lawn make sure it stays that way. On her sixteenth birthday, though, the rift spins completely out of control. Hazel comes face-to-face with a surprise: a second Hazel. Then another. And another. Three other Hazels from three different dimensions! Now, for the first time, Hazel has to step into the world to learn about her connection to the rift—and how to close it. But is Hazel—even more than one of her—really capable of saving the world?

The Celts by John Farrelly

The Celts arrived in Ireland around 700BCE and dominated the bronze and iron ages. Even after Christianity, Irish Celts retained much of their unique culture. Accessible, anarchic and crammed to the rafters with cartoons and wacky illustrations, this book is as deadly as Irish history gets!

Sunday, 13 September 2020

Surrender Your Sons by Adam Sass

Connor Major’s summer break is turning into a nightmare.

His SAT scores bombed, the old man he delivers meals to died, and when he came out to his religious zealot mother, she had him kidnapped and shipped off to a secluded island. His final destination: Nightlight Ministries, a conversion therapy camp that will be his new home until he “changes.”

But Connor’s troubles are only beginning. At Nightlight, everyone has something to hide from the campers to the “converted” staff and cagey camp director, and it quickly becomes clear that no one is safe. Connor plans to escape and bring the other kidnapped teens with him. But first, he’s exposing the camp’s horrible truths for what they are— and taking this place down.

Roundup

Welcome to the weekly roundup, a chance to make sure you haven't missed any posts you might be interested in.

Saturday, 12 September 2020

Watch Over Me by Nina LaCour


Mila is used to being alone. Maybe that’s why she said yes to the opportunity: living in this remote place, among the flowers and the fog and the crash of waves far below.

But she hadn’t known about the ghosts.

Newly graduated from high school, Mila has aged out of the foster care system. So when she’s offered a job and a place to stay at a farm on an isolated part of the Northern California Coast, she immediately accepts. Maybe she will finally find a new home, a real home. The farm is a refuge, but also haunted by the past traumas its young residents have come to escape. And Mila’s own terrible memories are starting to rise to the surface.


This review is FULL OF SPOILERS, please be wary if you don't want to be spoiled. I couldn't write this review without them.

Knee Deep by Karol Ann Hoeffner; Author Interview

Named after a hurricane, Camille is the rebellious sixteen-year-old daughter of a New Orleans bar-owner who grows up in the shadow of Bourbon Street, raised on stories of hauntings, lusty encounters and voodoo magic. And even though her family loses their home in a hurricane, she counts herself among the lucky until she discovers that her eighteen-year-old neighbor whom she secretly loves goes missing in the storm.

In Camille's own words: "This is the story of what happened to me on Fat Tuesday, how I ended up on the steps of St. Mary’s, the hem of my pirate’s petticoat soaked in somebody’s else’s blood. Although I know the story to be true, I don’t totally believe it myself. Like all good tales born out of the bayou, mine involves the dead, the living and the one trapped in the brackish waters between heaven and hell. It is the story of true love and true disaster, and at the end of it, I’ll leave it up to you to decide which is the harder to survive."

Friday, 11 September 2020

Book Release Tour: Minute Zero by Chris Jayne

MinuteZero
Happy publication day, and congratulations to author Chris Jayne on the release of Minute Zero (Stronghold #1)! Read on for an exclusive excerpt and a chance to win a $10 Amazon gift card!


Minute Zero_big
Minute Zero (Stronghold #1)

Publication Date: September 11th, 2020 (Today 🎉)

Publisher: Inferis Press When the world ends in a heartbeat, suddenly old secrets don’t matter anymore. But new ones still do, and protecting the ones you love is the only thing that still remains.

Two sisters, one a trendy caterer on the run from a vicious killer, the other a country midwife. Because of a simple mistake, Lori Dovner must flee from the vicious mafioso Raoul Saldata, and her life goes from routine day to terrifying journey in a single moment. On the road with her two children, her only goal is to get to her sister’s Montana farm alive. But both Lori and Louise have been hiding a devastating secret for years.

Two brothers, one a Navy Seal on leave, the other a good man who wants to do right by his family. Captain Deacon Hale is taking two weeks to help his brother Roger and his wife Louise on their remote Montana farm. He loved Lori once, but has finally put her behind him. Roger Hale just wants to give his pregnant wife and two young children a good life. He has no idea about the betrayals that have been hidden from him.

Dangerous identity. Angela Jones is an FBI agent with a terrible debt that she knows she will someday have to pay. And when Raoul Saldata calls in that marker she has no choice but to comply.

Evil incarnate. Raoul Saldata as a child in Albania, would pretend he was a dhampir, the offspring resulting from the mating between a human female and a vampire. A myth of course, but the evil Saldata practices is anything but. And when he finds Lori Dovner, he intends to do a lot more than just kill her.

“Minute Zero” Stronghold: Book One is an apocalyptic EMP thriller (with a touch of romance) about an ordinary family struggling to stay safe and find each other in the face of insurmountable odds, an abysmal loss of life and the dawn of a new, post-apocalyptic dark age.

Add to Goodreads

Excerpt
“Roger, I’m in trouble.”
His voice came back, quick and sure. “What’s going on? Where are you?”
“I’m at a rest area about an hour outside of Billings.”
“West or east?”
“West. We’re maybe twenty miles from where we go off the highway and come north to Lewiston. I can’t remember the road number.”
“191,” he supplied. She heard Roger speaking to someone else in the room, his voice distant, as if he was holding the phone away from his mouth. “Top drawer of the desk. Yeah, there. There’s a road atlas in there.” His voice came back into the phone. “I’m think I know where you are, but I’m getting a map. What’s going on?”
“The man who is after me is here. His name is Raoul Saldata and…”
“There? Now? With you?” Roger’s voice, while remaining calm, still carried a note of real urgency.
“No. I saw him just by chance. He didn’t see me. He got into a car and left.”
“You’re sure he didn’t see you?”
“Yes. If he’d seen me, there’s no way he would have driven off.” She quickly shared with her brother-in-law her guess that if it were not for Grace’s illness, they would already be at their destination and because of that, Saldata was no longer looking for them on the road. “Roger,” Lori voice cracked, “he wants to kill me. And he’s not alone. He’s got two people with him, a man and a woman.”
Lori heard what sounded like a door slam and then another voice muffled in the background, the words unintelligible, but it was definitely a male voice, and not her sister.
“How long ago was this?”
“Just a couple of minutes. I saw him, watched him leave, walked back to my car, and then called you.” She did the quick math. “No more than five minutes.”
“So, two hours from here,” Roger stated flatly. Lori got the feeling he was talking to someone else as well as to her. “Is he armed?”
Lori swallowed, her throat dry as dust, thinking about what she’d seem at Saldata’s house. “I’m sure he is. But,” Lori had a sudden thought, “can you bring guns on the plane?”
“He flew?”
“He was in a rental car. I assume he flew. That means he would have had to bring the guns on the plane, right? Can you do that?”
“You have to declare them if you fly commercial. But, if this guy has enough money or influence, he may have come on a private jet. Then he could bring anything he wanted.” Roger paused. “Tell me about who he’s with.”
“I don’t know who they are. I don’t know this man, really, at all. I just did a party for him. But, the first one is some sort of helper. A bodyguard maybe. I saw him at Saldata’s house. The other one is a woman. Young, maybe thirty. Very professional.” Lori envisioned what she’d seen in the restroom and suddenly Lori realized exactly what she looked like. “Like a lawyer or a detective maybe. She saw me in the bathroom.”
“She saw you?” Roger couldn’t hide the shock from his voice.
“Yes,” Lori explained, “but she didn’t recognize me. I cut my hair really short and dyed it black. I look very different. And the kids weren’t with me, thank God.”
There was a long pause as Roger was obviously considering the next steps. “Did you notice the model of the car?”
“No, Roger, I’m sorry, I don’t really know car models. It was a small SUV.” She thought about car models that she knew, ones that she and some of her friends owned. “It wasn’t as big as my Range Rover. Maybe something like a Toyota 4Runner. That size. It was gray. And it definitely had Montana plates.”
“How did he know you were coming here?”
“I don’t know, but…” Quickly, Lori shared with Roger her fear that Saldata had somehow found her employees, Salvadore and Michelle.
As she waited for Roger to respond, she watched her two children with Simone. Brandon had run over to Simone, and, his face turned up, he said something to her. He smiled, so sweet and trusting. My God, she had to protect them, all of them. The silence on Roger’s side of the call grew. “What should I do? Where should I go? I’m so sorry.” She heard her voice rising to shrill, but she couldn’t stop it.
Roger interrupted curtly. “What’s done is done, Lori. You need to hold it together. And the only thing that matters now is keeping everyone safe.”
“I don’t know what to do. Even if I turn around and I didn’t come to you, he’s still on his way there.”
“I want you to stay there.”
“Here? At the rest stop?”
“Yes, I’m going to send someone to get you. Do you remember my brother Deacon? He’s on leave and visiting us for a few weeks.”
For the second time in ten minutes, Lori felt like she’d been punched in the stomach and for a very long moment, she could not breathe. On a day when things could not possibly have gotten worse, they just did. “I met him at your wedding,” she managed to choke out. That flat statement masked a wealth of information. Did Roger notice how strangled her voice was?
Lori remembered Deacon Hale very well, but now was not the time to dwell on it, though why in the name of all that was holy had her sister not mentioned that Deacon was there visiting them? For a brief hysterical second, she wondered if she’d be better off taking her chances with Saldata. And in the next moment, she knew a hard truth, one she had never allowed herself to acknowledge. The main reason she had avoided being around Lou and Roger for the last five years was that Roger reminded her way, way too much of Deacon. She could barely gasp out her next, strangled question. “So, you’re not coming?”
“No.” Roger’s voice was flat and hard. “If what you say is true, I have three people on their way here who are perfectly capable of putting a bullet into the brains of anyone in my family.”
“You think I should just wait here? At the rest stop? What if he comes back?”
“You’re sure the woman didn’t recognize you?”
“Yeah, I’m sure. She just walked right out of the bathroom. I look really different, Roger.”
“Then, they won’t come back,” Roger responded, his voice full of confidence. “Why would they? And even if they’d turn around for some reason, they’d be on the other side of the interstate.” Lori saw the logic in that. “Just sit tight. Deke’ll be there in two hours, give or take.”
In less than three hours she’d see him. See Deke. Could she do it? There was no way. No. Fucking. Way.
The phone went dead in her hand.
And in one instant the world changed forever.
About the Author

chris-jayne-author-headshot_orig 

Chris Jayne is author of the apocalyptic EMP series “Stronghold.” Jayne is also the penname of a USA Today bestselling romance and thriller author who is has started asking “what if?” What if the lights go off? What if the food supply chain just… stops? The world could become an unfriendly place in a hurry. Three years ago, Chris began exploring the “prepper” lifestyle, and hopes that if TEOTWAWKI would actually happen, she would be in a position to protect her family and loved ones. She now spends her days splitting her time between her romance writing and her apocalyptic and dystopian fiction novels. Because what’s more fun than imagining the end of the world from the comfort of your couch? And if the end of the world has a few sexy Navy Seals in it? All the better! She loves writing stories exploring how ordinary people cope with extraordinary circumstances, especially situations where the normal comforts, conveniences, and rules are stripped away.

For a chance to win a $10 Amazon gift card, click the link below! Giveaway will be open from September 11th to the 14th. A Rafflecopter Giveaway Book Blitz Organized By: R&R Button

Into the Spotlight by Carrie Hope Fletcher

Great Aunt Maud visits seasides the world over and has become quite the pebble collector. Pebbles of all shapes, sizes and colours and even one that looked a bit like Elvis Presley if you held it up to the light and squinted a bit. Her favourite pebbles, however, are Marigold, Margot and Morris.

One by one, and by strange and unusual ways, each child arrives at the stage door of Great Aunt Maud's theatre in the heart of London.

They spend their summer holidays backstage with an extraordinary cast of theatre acts - Dante the miraculous magician, Petunia the storyteller and seventy-year-old contortionists - the Fortune Sisters!

One day, as they are exploring the many nooks and crannies of the theatre, they stumble upon something they were never meant to find . . .

Thursday, 10 September 2020

The Egyptians by Jonny Marx and Chaaya Prabhat

How did the Egyptians remove a mummy's brain?
How much solid gold was used to make Tutankhamun's sarcophagus?
Was the world's first pop star an Egyptian choral singer?

Readers can discover the truth behind some of the most incredible ancient Egyptian stories and superstitions and unearth the most fascinating aspects of an ancient culture in this immersive book. With flaps to lift on every page, there's plenty of history to uncover!

Happy #Bookbirthday!

Happy Thursday all! This was another pretty busy week,  with five books on our lists publishing.

Wednesday, 9 September 2020

Planet Omar: Incredible Rescue Mission, by Zanib Mian and Nasaya Mafaradik

When Omar and his friends come back after the school holidays, their lovely teacher seems to have been replaced by somebody much more grumpy.

Overhearing other teachers talking about her, Omar decides something terrible has happened. Could she possibly have been abducted by ... aliens?!

Omar persuades his friends to mount a rescue mission but what they find is very surprising!

These Vengeful Hearts by Katherine Laurin

Whenever something scandalous happens at Heller High, the Red Court is the name on everyone's lips. Its members--the most elite female students in the school--deal out social ruin and favors in equal measure, their true identities a secret known only to their ruthless leader: the Queen of Hearts.

Sixteen-year-old Ember Williams has seen firsthand the damage the Red Court can do. Two years ago, they caused the accident that left her older sister paralyzed. Now, Ember is determined to hold them accountable...by taking the Red Court down from the inside.

But crossing enemy lines will mean crossing moral boundaries, too--ones Ember may never be able to come back from. She always knew taking on the Red Court would come at a price, but will the cost of revenge be more than she's willing to sacrifice?

Tuesday, 8 September 2020

Even if we Break by Marieke Nijkamp

FIVE friends go to a cabin.
FOUR of them are hiding secrets.
THREE years of history bind them.
TWO are doomed from the start.
ONE person wants to end this.
NO ONE IS SAFE.

Are you ready to play?

#Bookpost

Happy Tuesday, everyone!

It's been a much quieter week, which to be honest is fine because we're super swamped right now. As always, click on the cover image to be taken to Goodreads.

Monday, 7 September 2020

Childhood Favourites: Empty World by John Christopher


When Neil survives a deadly plague and plunges into solitude, he must question everything in this gripping adventure from critically acclaimed Tripods author John Christopher.

Neil’s world is shattered when he and his family are involved in a horrible car accident that leaves him an orphan. He is sent to live in a small village with his grandparents, whom he loves but doesn’t really know.

Soon, a devastating illness, the Calcutta Plague, begins making the headlines. After killing thousands of people in India in just a few months, the disease begins to spread much farther, quickly sweeping across the world and eventually settling in the same village where Neil resides. The sickness is a strange one, affecting only the adults and none of the children, and soon Neil finds himself an orphan once more.

Alone, Neil travels to London in search of other survivors of the plague. There he finds a strange world of fear and suspicion, where friends can be enemies and people will do anything to survive. In this time of strife, amid the excitement and loneliness of his solitude, can Neil find a way to focus on what matters most?

Sources Say by Lori Goldstein


At Acedia High School outside of Boston, student council has always been nothing more than a popularity contest. Nobody pays attention. Nobody cares.

But all that changes when the Frankengirls show up. During the very first week of school, someone plasters the halls with Photoshopped images of three "perfect tens"--images of scantily clad girls made from real photos of girls at school. The student body is livid. And the two presidential candidates, Angeline Quinn and Leo Torres, jump on the opportunity to propose their solutions and secure votes. After their messy break up, Leo and Angie are fighting tooth and nail to win this thing and their constituents are mesmerized as they duke it out.

As if things couldn't be more dramatic, the school's two newspapers get involved. The Red & Blue is run by Angie's sister Cat and she prides herself on only reporting the facts. But her morals are tested when The Shrieking Violet--written by an anonymous source and based less on facts and more on fiction--blatantly endorses Leo. Rumors fly, secrets are leaked, and the previously mundane student election becomes anything but boring.

Sunday, 6 September 2020

Devastation Class by Glen Zipper and Elaine Mongeon

An annihilation force of invading aliens. Human civilization on the brink of extinction. Earth’s only hope—seven cadets and the legendary starship they were never meant to command. No matter the cost, they will stop at nothing to survive. No matter the odds, they will fight to save their future.

The distant future. Earth’s Alliance forces have emerged victorious from a brutal nine-year war with the mysterious Kastazi—a vicious, highly advanced alien race. In the dawn of a new peace, the Alliance Devastation Class starship California embarks on a mission of science and learning with a skeleton crew of seasoned officers, civilian students, and inexperienced military cadets in tow.

For JD Marshall and Viv Nixon, gifted cadets and best friends, the mission holds special meaning: It offers an opportunity to prove themselves and begin to escape the long shadows of their legendary war hero parents.

Suddenly ambushed by a second wave of invading Kastazi forces, JD and Viv make the impossible decision to spearhead a mutiny to save the California and everyone on it. In command and quickly out of options, they are forced to activate the ship's prototype Blink Reactor—an experimental technology they expect to send them to the safe, distant reaches of space. When their escape transports them to a reality they don’t recognize and reveals unimaginably terrifying secrets, they must fight their way home to save not just everyone they love but also humanity itself. Standing in their way are an insurmountable enemy, saboteurs from within, a mystery eons in the making, and the fabric of time and space itself.

Weekly Roundup

Hi all! Another busy, busy week for us here. How was yours?

Saturday, 5 September 2020

Michael Collins by Eithne Massey

From his childhood on a West Cork farm, Michael Collins dreams of fighting for Ireland's freedom. His dream comes true when he takes part in the 1916 Rising, but crashes with the surrender of the rebels and internment in a prison camp. Michael fights his way back to become a leader in the fight for independence, creating a spy ring of ordinary people, in a Dublin where nothing is quite what it seems.

But this story is not just about politics and war; Michael's crazy sense of humour, his friendships, his faults and his love of his Kerry Blue terriers are brought vividly to life.

This books shows us not just why Michael Collins became one of the bravest and most effective leaders Ireland has ever known, but also why he held the keys of 100 Dublin houses, houses where the families were willing to risk their lives in order to keep him safe.

One by One by Ruth Ware

Getting snowed in at a luxurious, rustic ski chalet high in the French Alps doesn’t sound like the worst problem in the world. Especially when there’s a breathtaking vista, a full-service chef and housekeeper, a cozy fire to keep you warm, and others to keep you company. Unless that company happens to be eight coworkers…each with something to gain, something to lose, and something to hide.

When the cofounder of Snoop, a trendy London-based tech startup, organizes a weeklong trip for the team in the French Alps, it starts out as a corporate retreat like any other: PowerPoint presentations and strategy sessions broken up by mandatory bonding on the slopes. But as soon as one shareholder upends the agenda by pushing a lucrative but contentious buyout offer, tensions simmer and loyalties are tested. The storm brewing inside the chalet is no match for the one outside, however, and a devastating avalanche leaves the group cut off from all access to the outside world. Even worse, one Snooper hadn’t made it back from the slopes when the avalanche hit.

As each hour passes without any sign of rescue, panic mounts, the chalet grows colder, and the group dwindles further…one by one.

Friday, 4 September 2020

The Supermarket Ghost by Gordon Snell

Maria thinks it is going to be a dull summer until she meets a strange boy with an unusual request.

An exciting and unpredictable ghost story for younger readers that's a little scary, but not too scary!

Just One of Those Days by Jill Murphy

The charming third story about the famous Bear family, following Jill Murphy's modern classics Peace at Last and Whatever Next! When Mr and Mrs Bear wake up late, it's raining outside - and Baby Bear is late for nursery. Then Mrs Bear sits on her glasses at work and Mr Bear spills his coffee. Oh dear - it seems this is just going to be one of those days! But the loveable Bear family muddle through cheerfully, and there's even a surprise for Baby Bear when Mr Bear gets home from work. With all the hallmarks of an instant classic, Just One of Those Days is a gentle, warm story about a hectic family day, which parents and children everywhere will relate to - full of satisfying read-aloud repetition and rhythm - and with Jill Murphy's cozy, instantly recognizable illustrations.

Thursday, 3 September 2020

The Reckless Afterlife of Harriet Stoker by Lauren James

“Congratulations, new kid. Welcome to the afterlife.”
What if death is only the beginning?

When Harriet Stoker dies after falling from a balcony in a long-abandoned building, she discovers a group of ghosts, each with a special power.

Felix, Kasper, Rima and Leah welcome Harriet into their world, eager to make friends with the new arrival after decades alone. Yet Harriet is more interested in unleashing her own power, even if it means destroying everyone around her. But when all of eternity is at stake, the afterlife can be a dangerous place to make an enemy.

Happy #BookBirthday!

Happy Thursday! This is it, the big one. A lot of books that were pushed back in the spring and summer landed today, the 3rd of September. Six books on our list published today, and another six in the last week, so let's get right to it!

Wednesday, 2 September 2020

The Inheritance Games by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

US Cover               UK Cover

Avery Grambs has a plan for a better future: survive high school, win a scholarship, and get out. But her fortunes change in an instant when billionaire Tobias Hawthorne dies and leaves Avery virtually his entire fortune. The catch? Avery has no idea why--or even who Tobias Hawthorne is. To receive her inheritance, Avery must move into sprawling, secret passage-filled Hawthorne House, where every room bears the old man's touch--and his love of puzzles, riddles, and codes.

Unfortunately for Avery, Hawthorne House is also occupied by the family that Tobias Hawthorne just dispossessed. This includes the four Hawthorne grandsons: dangerous, magnetic, brilliant boys who grew up with every expectation that one day, they would inherit billions. Heir apparent Grayson Hawthorne is convinced that Avery must be a con-woman, and he's determined to take her down. His brother, Jameson, views her as their grandfather's last hurrah: a twisted riddle, a puzzle to be solved. Caught in a world of wealth and privilege, with danger around every turn, Avery will have to play the game herself just to survive.

Tuesday, 1 September 2020

Everything is Fine by Gillian Harvey

Jessica Bradley has it all: the perfect boyfriend; influential healthy-eating blog; successful PR company and wonderful daughter, Anna. Or at least that is what her thousands of followers believe.

The truth is, her boyfriend just broke up with her in four words on a post-it; her zest for healthy-eating has all but disappeared; her PR success is all reliant on her now not-so-honest online-life and she just got caught eating her daughter's Coco-Pops.

So as they say: fake it 'til you make it. A few little white lies and phoney smiling selfies and Jess can keep up appearances. But when her real-life starts to spiral out of control how can Jess tell the truth from the lies? And will she be able to seize real happiness when it is right in front of her?

#Bookpost, week ending 1 Sep 2020

Happy Tuesday, all! A quiet week, right up until this morning when I unexpectedly received two new books!

As always, click the covers to go to the goodreads (or publisher's) page.

Monday, 31 August 2020

My Life as a Cat by Carlie Sorosiak

Leonard has never had a name. Or a body. Or a best friend. But he is excited to try being a human.

On their three-hundredth-birthday, every alien from Leonard’s home galaxy gets to spend a month in the body of an Earth Creature. Leonard was supposed to become a forest ranger in Yellowstone National Park – but there was a mix-up.

And now he’s stuck as a stray cat.

Luckily for Leonard, he meets a young human called Olive – and together they set out on a journey to find home.

Twelve by Andrea Blythe

Twelve is a poetic retelling of the Brothers Grimm fairytale "The Twelve Dancing Princesses." Bewitching and beguiling, this short series of linked poems takes the reader to the underground realm and back, following the stories of twelve princesses and their life after the magic shoes.

Sunday, 30 August 2020

American Royals 2 by Katharine McGee

US Cover                                      UK Cover
Beatrice Washington now rules America as its first ever queen, but her family are more concerned about rushing through her arranged marriage to a man she barely knows. No one can know that her heart really belongs to her bodyguard - but even their love is under threat.

Meanwhile, Princess Samantha is under more scrutiny than ever before - and she still longs to be with her sister's fiancee. But with no sign of Bea's wedding being called off, she's surprised to find someone else catching her eye.

Nina Gonzalez is also tangled up with someone she never expected to be. She and Ethan are both nursing broken hearts, and it's not long before they find themselves pulled irresistably together.

Luckily for Daphne Deighton, Prince Jeff's grief for his father makes him a prime target for her attentions. She's the closest she's been in years to getting what she wants . . . so why can't she let the idea of her and Ethan go?

As the royal wedding of the century creeps ever closer, will these four young women get what they want - or will their hearts be broken forever?

Weekly Roundup

G'morning all! Welcome to the end of another busy week on the blog. In a couple of weeks we'll be dropping back to a more relaxed schedule, but for now, here's the roundup of everything we did this week.

Saturday, 29 August 2020

All the Stars and Teeth by Adalyn Grace

US Cover                                  UK Cover
As princess of the island kingdom Visidia, Amora Montara has spent her entire life training to be High Animancer - the master of souls. The rest of the realm can choose their magic, but for Amora, it's never been a choice. To secure her place as heir to the throne, she must prove her mastery of the monarchy's dangerous soul magic.

When her demonstration goes awry, Amora is forced to flee. She strikes a deal with Bastian, a mysterious pirate: he'll help her prove she's fit to rule, if she'll help him reclaim his stolen magic.

But sailing the kingdom holds more wonder - and more peril - than Amora anticipated. A destructive new magic is on the rise, and if Amora is to conquer it, she'll need to face legendary monsters, cross paths with vengeful mermaids, and deal with a stow-away she never expected... or risk the fate of Visidia and lose the crown forever.

Love and Other Detours by Jenna Evans Welch

From Italy to Ireland, love can be found anywhere....
Travel to beautiful Tuscany with Lina who, still grieving her mother’s death, is forced to spend time with a father she never knew. But Lina isn’t in the mood for Italy’s famous sunshine or fairy-tale landscape. All Lina wants to do is go back home...until she’s given a journal that her mom had kept when she lived in Italy.

Suddenly, Lina is uncovering a world of magic and romance. It’s a world that inspires her, along with the ever so charming Ren, to follow in her mother’s footsteps and uncover a secret that has been kept for far too long—a secret that will change everything Lina thought to be true.

In the green hills of Ireland, Lina’s best friend Addie is just trying to make it through her aunt’s over-the-top destination wedding, hoping that she can stop thinking about the one thing she did that left her miserable and heartbroken—and threatens her future. But her brother, Ian, isn’t about to let her forget.

But when Addie discovers an unusual guidebook, Ireland for the Heartbroken, their travel plans change. Soon, Addie finds herself on a whirlwind tour of the Emerald Isle with Ian and his Irish-accented friend, Rowan. And as the trio journeys through magical forests and past countless castles, Addie hopes her guidebook will heal not only her broken heart, but also her shattered relationship with her brother.

No matter where Lina and Addie’s travels take them, one thing is true: romance and adventure are on the horizon.

Friday, 28 August 2020

Have You Seen the Dublin Vampire? by Úna Woods

In an old part of Dublin, right down by the sea, There's a moon-shaped park with a creepy old tree.

The Dublin Vampire lives there.

The Vampire wakes up as the sun's going down. He hops on the ghost bus and rides into town.

Have you seen the Dublin Vampire?

A funny, warm picture book set throughout Dublin, home to Dracula's creator, Bram Stoker.

Featuring well-known sights around Dublin, including The Crescent (Marino), Five Lamps, O'Connell Bridge, Trinity, Grafton St, Natural History Museum, St Stephen's Green, Bewley's, Dublin Castle and Temple Bar.

Star Trek Nerd Seach by Glenn Dakin

It’s a puzzle book, Jim, but not as we know it. This is no conventional ’search-and-find.’ Each of its detailed, full-color pages is packed with out-of-context items and cosmic continuity errors that only a true fan can spot. It would be illogical to resist this challenge, when the accuracy of the whole Trek universe is at stake.

Captain Kirk, Mr Spock and the Enterprise crew have discovered that a series of exploding tribbles have been hidden by the Klingons in locations visited by the Enterprise. Kirk and his crew must seek and find each exploding tribble. At the same time, fans must spot items from every story in The Original Series, also concealed in the pictures. This is next-level Where’s Waldo for adult fans, plus a chance to save the galaxy into the bargain!

The book opens with an article exploring the grand tradition of fans spotting continuity gaffes in the world of Star Trek. Then this is followed by an explanatory spread telling the reader how to use the book. A feedback session at the back clears up all quibbles with tribbles and debates about the non-interference directive!

Three levels of engagement:
• TRIBBLE TREK: SPOT the all-important EXPLODING TRIBBLE
• NERD ALERT: Spot five continuity errors, mistakes within the featured episode itself.
• THE ARTEFACT INCIDENT: Find the out-of-context items from other episodes, ten to a spread.

Thursday, 27 August 2020

A Whale of the Wild

For Vega and her family, salmon is life. And Vega is learning to be a salmon finder, preparing for the day when she will be her family’s matriarch. But then she and her brother Deneb are separated from their pod when a devastating earthquake and tsunami render the seascape unrecognizable. Vega must use every skill she has to lead her brother back to their family. The young orcas face a shark attack, hunger, the deep ocean, and polluted waters on their journey. Will Vega become the leader she’s destined to be?

Happy #BookBirthday!

Happy Thursday, everyone! This week three books from our lists have published.

Wednesday, 26 August 2020

Sanctuary by Paola Mendoza and Abby Sher

It's 2032, and in this near-future America, all citizens are chipped and everyone is tracked--from buses to grocery stores. It's almost impossible to survive as an undocumented immigrant, but that's exactly what sixteen-year-old Vali is doing. She and her family have carved out a stable, happy life in small-town Vermont, but when Vali's mother's counterfeit chip starts malfunctioning and the Deportation Forces raid their town, they are forced to flee.

Now on the run, Vali and her family are desperately trying to make it to her tía Luna's in California, a sanctuary state that is currently being walled off from the rest of the country. But when Vali's mother is detained before their journey even really begins, Vali must carry on with her younger brother across the country to make it to safety before it's too late.

Gripping and urgent, co-authors Paola Mendoza and Abby Sher have crafted a narrative that is as haunting as it is hopeful in envisioning a future where everyone can find sanctuary.

The Haunted Lake by PJ Lynch

Jacob and his father are the only people who fish Lake Spetzia, which was formed when the river was dammed and their town was flooded. The villagers say the lake is haunted, but Jacob and his father don’t want to leave, because Jacob’s mother is buried in the cemetery below the water. As Jacob grows up, a village girl named Ellen falls in love with him, and he with her. 

But before they are married, Jacob disappears—lured underwater by the ghosts who inhabit the sunken village. Years go by, with Jacob held captive by the watery spirits and Ellen never giving up hope that she will find him, until a fateful night when Jacob sees the light of Ellen’s boat floating above. Can he break free and reach the surface? 

Masterful illustrations alive with achingly expressive characters and eerie underwater light bring readers into acclaimed creator P.J. Lynch’s rich world of love, loss, and hope.

Tuesday, 25 August 2020

The One and Only Bob by Katherine Applegate

Bob sets out on a dangerous journey in search of his long-lost sister with the help of his two best friends, Ivan and Ruby. As a hurricane approaches and time is running out, Bob finds courage he never knew he had and learns the true meaning of friendship and family.

#BookPost week ending 25 August 2020

Hi all! A quieter week here on the blog, but that gives us a chance to catch up on our TBRs!

As always, click on the covers to be taken to the Goodreads page.

Monday, 24 August 2020

The Companion by Katie Alender


The other orphans say Margot is lucky.

Lucky to survive the horrible accident that killed her family.

Lucky to have her own room because she wakes up screaming every night.

And finally, lucky to be chosen by a prestigious family to live at their remote country estate.

But it wasn't luck that made the Suttons rescue Margot from her bleak existence at the group home. Margot was handpicked to be a companion to their silent, mysterious daughter, Agatha. At first, helping with Agatha--and getting to know her handsome older brother--seems much better than the group home. But soon, the isolated, gothic house begins playing tricks on Margot’s mind, making her question everything she believes about the Suttons . . . and herself.

Margot’s bad dreams may have stopped when she came to live with Agatha – but the real nightmare has just begun.

The Rose Princess by Ivy Hollins


In a kingdom of fairies and dragons, Talia is reassuringly normal… until she isn’t. Plucked from her quiet town and thrust into a life as heir to the throne, and betrothed to a powerful duke, she must face up to a terrifying question: what if the curse is real? What if she really is destined to be trapped in eternal sleep?

Duke Caradoc has spent his whole life dominated by his mother, the fierce Duchess of the Northern Wastes. But when he meets Talia, betrothed to him since childhood, he knows that his mother’s lust for power has gone too far. The curse must be stopped… and the answer might lie in Caradoc and Talia’s mysterious dreams.

Sunday, 23 August 2020

The Nemesis by SJ Kincaid

Three years ago, Tyrus Domitrian shocked the galaxy by killing the woman he swore to love forever. The woman for whom he upended the Empire. The woman with whom he wanted to build a new and brighter future.

Now, the once-idealistic heir apparent has become the cruel Emperor Tyrus, wielding his authority with an iron fist, capable of destroying planets with a single word, controlling all technology with a simple thought. He has bent the Grandiloquy to their knees, and none has the power to stand against him.

But there is a muttering among the Excess. They say that Nemesis is not truly gone. They whisper of her shadow spotted in distant star systems. They say that Nemesis lives. That she will rise, and rally the people to topple the man who was once her truest love—and is now her fiercest enemy.