Wednesday, 27 February 2019

Lost (House of Night Other World #2) P. C. Cast and Kristin Cast

Hello Readers,

Thank you P. C. Cast for sending me a copy of Lost for free in exchange for an honest review. Spoiler warning.

No more freaking out that P. C. Cast knows who I am as promised

I can't believe Zoey and the Nerd Herd are well and truly back! This book follows on from Loved. This is a great set of book series and I absolutely loved them when I was a teenager.  Obviously, this series has a lot of backgrounds already, but I was sucked in from the events from Loved and I couldn’t wait to read it.

This book explores the Other World, where Other Kevin who is a red vampire had to return to his world and time to fight Neferet before she becomes an immortal. What was also really thought-provoking was seeing what would have happened if Neferet has carried through with her plan with the red Vampyres and conquering the world. Humans are basically nothing, they are living in a city filled and ruled by vampyers. Zoey keeps having dreams and pain that she discovers "other Kevin" is using old magic. She has to stop him so she decides to go to the other world where she is dead and help Kevin. It really made me thankful just how much Darkness was held at bay when Zoey and the Nerd Herd were at work for Light. This book had several different narrators and it made it that much more compelling.

Let’s talk about Kevin…
I loved how Kevin when he was introduced in Loved, but he grew up so much and I really enjoyed seeing him take an active role in the rebellion. I found him to be a lot more relatable and less dramatic than Zoey (Still love ya Z). Kevin is super awkward (bless him), but also determined to get stuff done.  Seeing Kevin deal with Old Magick was also an incredible development the idea of a creature which isn’t allied to Light nor Darkness is definitely a fascinating concept.  Other Kevin has to convince his grandma Redbird that he is a good red vampire and help the resistance. Then he has to convince Aphrodite she is good and well loved. Nyx reappears and encourages others to find love, restore love, and love always wins.

Seeing Otherworld Aphrodite was a little heartbreaking. You get an understanding of why she’s considered the “b***h” in the original series. You get to see the sacrifices she had to make to both keep her powerful position as Prophetess while also not totally give in to the Darkness.  Reading Other Aphrodite's chapters and getting to see what her world was like before she had any friends and the character growth, they gave her.  I honestly believe next time I reread the series it will change the way I see Aphrodite.

STOP now to avoid Spoilers
Major Spoiler: I was not read for seeing Anastasia and Dragon together in one world again. Dragon was always a tough character for me to like but over the years of reading House of Night I grew to appreciate him.

Huge Spoiler: No details Cast’s can we stop making me ugly cry now?.....Please? I asked nicely?

L x

Monday, 25 February 2019

Loved by P. C. Cast and Kristin Cast

Hello Readers, 
Thank you P. C. Cast for sending me a copy of Loved for free in exchange for an honest review. Spoiler warning. 

I want to say I will stop freaking out that P. C. Cast knows who I am.  I don’t think younger me can take it anymore without exploding into a glitter ball but I promise this is the last blub about it. 

I can't believe Zoey and the gang are back and I'm so pleased they are! This is a great set of books and I absolutely loved them when I was a teenager.  I didn’t realize just how much I missed them all. I freaking love that the Nerd Herd and the House of Night world is back and facing a new adventure and I honestly couldn’t wait to join them. Of course, this series has a lot of background already, but I was sucked in from beginning to end. Again. 

Unfortunately, darkness is rising and the gang has to postpone Zoey's birthmas celebrations. Diving into this story was like coming home to something I hadn't realized I had missed so much. It has been one year since Zoey and the rest of the gifted group cast a spell to rid the world of Neferet once and for all. Everybody had gone separate ways and  have begun living their lives as fully changed Vampyres. It seems as though Zoey and her friends definitely got have more work to do, with a twist. I enjoyed how the Cast’s introduced new characters that totally makes the tale go forward in a good way. I really liked seeing the characters face demons they hadn't faced before. 

Zoey and her Nerd Herd face a whole new set problem when they accidentally open a way for red vamps from another dimension of Tulsa to enter their world. As chaos hits their home, Damien and Zoey recognise some of this evil horde of zombie-like creatures. Meanwhile, Aphrodite is dealing with her own demons. Together with Grandma Redbird, and Nyx of course, the crew find that Love, always, is the way. Random appreciation for Grandma Redbird she has the best advice. I am so happy she's involved and how much she cares for Zoey and her friends. It's so wonderful to see her interactions with the Nerd herd and how much they love, respect and listen to her.  The characters are just as amazing as they were in the first series. 

After finishing up the last book of the House of Night, I felt like I lost some friends so I'm happy I have the Nerd Herd back. It was so amazing reading about these characters again and I’m so happy that the other world series has happened. I cannot wait to see what happens next but make sure you read the original series before you start this one. It's definitely worth it! 


Friday, 22 February 2019

House of Night by P. C. Cast and Kristin Cast

Hello Readers,

If you followed me through Blogoween you would have seen my post about The House of Night series by P. C. Cast and Kristin Cast and how much I loved the series. Well, imagine my surprise when P.C. Cast saw my post and offered to send me two books (For Free) that continue the series (can we take a moment to acknowledge that I lost it a little imagine what 10 years ago me would have done).

So that’s a little history to now, it just so happened my friend who recommended them to me had started rereading them and I thought I would join her then we realised I was missing betrayed which I then borrowed off her. Turns out this made my cousin and friend nostalgic and they both reread the series too. All of us loved it and it was great opportunity. 

This book series holds a place in my heart when I first read them my Grandma was ill, I was being bullied and was well and truly at that awkward secondary school age. I was going to write about what one was my favourite but then I couldn’t pick so we're going to do a one-liner for Betrayed – I still cry. Even though I have read the books at least four times it still gets me.

So before we get into the books that P.C Cast sent me (For Free) next week I am going to attempt to sum up series so wish me luck.

House of Night is a thrilling young adult fantasy series written by P.C. Cast and her daughter Kristin Cast. I think everyone should enter the dark, magickal world of the House of Night at least once, a world similar to this one, except vampyres exist.

The series follows 16-year-old Zoey Redbird, who gets “Marked” by a vampyre tracker and begins to undergo the “Change” into an actual vampyre. She has to leave her family and move into the House of Night, a boarding school for other fledgeling vampyres like her. Zoey soon starts attending the House of Night, a school where if she survives the “Change” she will train to become an adult vampire sadly not all of those who are “Marked” survive the change. It’s tough to begin a new life, away from her parents and friends. It gets even harder for Zoey to fit in when she finds she is no average fledgeling. She has been Marked as special by the vampyre Goddess, Nyx. It’s within the school’s walls that most of our action takes place as Zoey meets new friends, finds love, channels her awesome new powers and begins the fight against Darkness. We soon discover that things at the House of Night are not always what they seem.

Books in the House of Night series

House of Night: Other World

Dragon's Oath
Lenobia's Vow
Neferet's Curse
Kalona's Fall
Other related books
The Fledgling Handbook 101
The Nyx in the House of Night: Mythology, Folklore
House of Night: Legacy
Wisdom of the House of Night Oracle Cards: A 50-Card Deck and Guidebook

L x

Wednesday, 20 February 2019

When I Fall, I Shall Rise by Dan Shtauber

Hello Readers,

Thank you to Tomoson Reviews for sending me When I Fall, I Shall Rise by Dan Shtauber for free in exchange for an honest review.

I agreed to read and review this book not long after I read The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris who needs time to mentally recover. Like the tattooist this a memoir and although the subject matter is harsh, I have to read them for in every single story of the horrors there are the stories that show a glimpse of hope, hidden strength that allowed the storyteller to survive. I am a strong believer in the fact we need to read these testimonies so that the events and people will never be forgotten and to prevent such horrific events happening ever again.

Before Dan delves into the memoir, he states that as he grew older, he became more aware of his Grandmother’s survival during the Holocaust. His Grandmother always wanted to share her experiences however his Grandfather preferred to keep his silence and spoke little of the Holocaust before she passed away in 2001.

Dan is regretful that he didn’t really sit down listen and inquire with his Grandmother to hear her story. However, in 1997, Dans Grandmother shared her story with Yad Vashem for a memorialisation project. The family received the tapes on which grandmother’s testimony was taken and closely guarded by Dan but he never watched them fully.

In January 2016, Dan decided to honour his grandmother on what would have been her 92nd birthday he gifted her memory with a book recording her travails during the holocausts. This book is based on the recordings but tells the story in a more organised manner.

Each Holocaust survivor has a unique and individual story. However, these stories didn’t end in 1945. They continue through to the present day. I am fascinated by how much you can learn reading story after story written by people who survived the Holocaust. Especially those people who went through concentration camps have stories that are similar but also unique. Their testimonies provide us with an understanding of how the events of the Holocaust have shaped their lives and the strength of the human spirit.

The writing is realistic but respectful and honouring the spirit of a grand lady. This book is so intense yet deeply touching book. the author uses such simple words, describing short scenes from her life, scenes that are sharp as a knife. It is a fine source of fact and an even finer source of compassion and those small and strong pictures stay carved in your memory for a long time after you read this book. The family connection gives it beautiful dimension because that is the most important thing. Had Risa not been such a strong woman, fitter and a survivor, Dan would not be here to tell her story. A inspiring account this traumatic yet powerful journey of hope, faith and love. It is a heart-warming read know all that Risa went through and knowing that she survived one of the darkest hours in human history and lived a full life after that.

To Purchase this book from
Amazon UK Click Here (UNPAID AD)
Amazon US Click Here (UNPAID AD) 

Monday, 18 February 2019

Happy Early Birthday To Me

Hello Readers, 

Seeing as tomorrow is my 26th birthday I feel that I should have some sort of words of wisdom or a list of 26 things to do with blah blah blah kind of post. 

But instead, let’s talk about adulting! It’s only as you get older you realise that everyone is making it up as they go along, no one really knows what to do and everyone is in some form of a mess. Adulting is hard; there is so much pressure that we put on ourselves or that we feel from others, it took me way too long to realise that I really needed to stop comparing myself to others for my own sanity.  I am on my own path and if I followed everyone else, I wouldn’t be blogging - so who’s really winning here! ME the person surrounded by book and wonderful and welcoming blogging community. 

I do have one or two words of wisdom though.  

First off, no matter what you do with your life, people will find something negative to say. Let’s ignore the negativity and toxicity those people have and make yourself burn brighter than they thought. If we're honest, if we listened to every piece of negative feedback, we would all be sat in a dark room counting cracks in the tiles. Who really wants to be doing that? 

The second is you are allowed to cut toxic people out of your life without feeling guilty. You cannot change people and if that person is having a negative effect on your life and mentality, you have to limit your interactions with that person for your own sanity and self-care.  I’ve realised that I can’t control the situation (sorry anxiety but it’s true) or change people into something they’re not and it’s counterproductive and I’m the only one suffering. People are who they are and are set in their ways for their own reasons. 

Also stealing words from Zombieland “celebrate the little things” no matter how obscure and insignificant they seem to others, they are your victories! 

L x

Friday, 15 February 2019

I Think We're Gonna Need A Priest

Hello Readers,
My cousin recently launched a new paranormal and true crime blog and today I thought I would leave her in charge of Readers Enjoy Authors’ Dreams. So today we are jumping from books to the paranormal.  We’ll have a quick question then well have a snippet of a ghost story.


Q: Why did you start your blog?
A: I have always been fascinated by both the paranormal and true crime I thought I would share my interest with others. This is my second blog and I found that I ran out of inspiration after a while whereas with such a wide subject matter I will always be researching which is the part I love.

Today we're going to look at the story of Greyfriars Bobby. Animal lovers get ready to have your hearts melted and the sudden urge to hug your pet. 

A local man named John Gray, better known as “Auld Jock”, worked as a night watchman for the Edinburgh City Police. John however never patrolled alone – he had his loyal Skye Terrier Bobby. 
In February 1858, John, unfortunately, died of tuberculosis. Upon his death, he was buried in Greyfriars Churchyard. Bobby led his master’s funeral procession to his final resting place at Greyfriars Cemetery. Even after the service, Bobby refused to leave John’s side. No dogs were allowed in the cemetery and every day the caretaker would send Bobby away. But the little dog always returned, no matter what Mother Nature threw his way. 

Despite the combined efforts of the caretaker, John’s family and the local people Bobby refused to leave his owner’s side for any length of time. It’s been documented that the only time Bobby would leave would be at 1 pm when the firing of the one o’clock gun would sound. At this time, Bobby would leave his post and go to the eating house for food and then immediately run back to John’s grave. Ultimately, he touched the hearts of the local residents. As I said earlier no dogs were allowed in the cemetery but Bobby became the only exception to this rule. The townspeople rallied around and built a small shelter next to the grave. And Bobby stayed, remaining ever faithful to John even until Bobby died in January 1872, at 16 years old. 

Bobby had the great honour of being buried in Greyfriars Kirkyard just 75 yards away from his master’s grave. He had his very own tombstone erected and unveiled but H.R.H the Duke of Gloucester CCVO (Prince Henry) in 1981. 

If that doesn’t hit you in the feels, I don’t know what will. Personally, it solidifies the realness of the bond between man and dog.

To read the full post about Edinburgh, The Lost Piper and Greyfriars Bobby click here
L x

Wednesday, 13 February 2019

Lets Talk About Valentine’s Day

Hello Readers,
Seeing as tomorrow is Valentines’ days I thought I would share some of my experiences of comedic tales from using online dating which made me reach out to friends and get their stories so here’s collection from across the board. Thank you to the people who shared their experience with me. Most of these are opening messages!

My Experience
Hello Lauren
I think you need to accept your fate and that you should marry me and have children because you’re getting past your sell-by date and you won’t have a better option.
Love ****

Okay where to start on this one sit back down I was 22 nowhere near a sell-by date if there was such a thing. I was 22!!! I still 3 years later have no idea how he thought this would work. Part of me really wanted to push it but I didn’t I blocked him because I’m an adult!!!

On to my anonymous posts
Once spoke to a guy on tinder who works for a telesales kinda company that sells "sexual aids" to the elderly, aka sex toys lmao died what an opener!!

Date: Hey can you **** me. Im not asking for you to pay for sex the first time. Please join my link!
Reply: That might be a problem it clearly states I am GAY!!!
Date: No problem join my link
Reply: I AM GAY
Date: Okay! No problem just join my link!

You could make a living out of selling hot dogs..." 
Wait for it "because you make my wiener stand"

Date: "Hey do you like puzzles"
Reply: errrrrrrm yes?!
Date: "good because we have two pieces that fit together

My profile on tinder mentions that I'm genderqueer, and there was a guy who's opening message was "do you have a penis" and when I called him out for being rude, he said "I suppose that's a yes then"

Your natural beauty radiates from my iPhone. I instantly have acquired a tan from your warm heavenly glow………….Brb applying Aloe Vera

Date: I've just been to the doctor's and got some bad news
Reply: oh really?
Date: yeah, I'm lacking vitamin U

The girl who was really sweet and kind who then turned out to have a foot fetish and wouldn't back off  and wasn’t so sweet about it

You are so adorable you make a baby deer look like a pile of sh*t

Date: Do you work at Subway?
Reply: No why?
Date: Because you just gave me a foot long

I hope you all have a wonderful day tomorrow 


Monday, 11 February 2019

Game Review: Dungeon Keeper

Hello Readers,
Today I thought we would look at one of my favourite PC games that I’ve been playing since 1999.  Straight off the bat the images used are from google images.

Dungeon Keeper is a real-time strategy game that turns the entire fantasy genre on its head. The world of Dungeon Keeper is tongue-in-cheek and cartoony, but engrossing, substantial and not cuddly. In most games you are the hero, exploring the dungeon, slaying evil creatures and collecting treasure. This time you get to be the evil Dungeon Keeper, designing your dungeon and stock it with vicious creatures. You are given minimal information about the world other than you're evil, you have a dungeon, you want to take over the world, and Heroes will try to enter your dungeon to kill your lovely, creatures and steal your gold. If your dungeon is well designed, those heroes will end up as hero-meat.   

In my opinion Dungeon Keeper is timeless and endlessly addictive, completely original, and full of charming and fascinating detail and depth. It might not be the prettiest game, but it made up for it with its soundscape and attention to detail. At the beginning each level you start with a ‘dungeon heart’, which is the source of your power and must be protected at all costs and a bare chamber, you, must command your hellish workforce to construct a dungeon to be proud of, unleashing it on witless heroes or enemy Keepers once you feel ready

You have to mine some gold, build a lair so your creatures will have a place to rest after a hard day of monstering. You need to capture portals so that said creatures can enter your dungeon a total of 18 different creatures. You can also create Libraries, Training rooms, Workshops, torture chambers, guard posts, temples, and other nifty evilness. Altogether there are 14 different kinds of rooms. Your creatures must train, sleep, be paid, eat, and worship, but most importantly, they must kill! You must also keep your creatures fed and paid or they become unhappy and can desert or vandalise your dungeon. Oh, best not forget to mention certain creatures don’t get on for example Vampires and Warlocks or Skeletons and Bile Demons.

I feel the nature of the game bestows itself to the patient gamer whilst battles can be frantic and intense, there are often long periods of 'training' creatures, micro-managing your economy, building new additions to your dungeon and so on. Even the small battles are carnage and quick decision-making. You're not a helpless observer in this game but an active participant, anxiously casting spells and praying your imps are mining enough gold to pay for all this.

I was honestly devastated when it stopped working back in the late 2000s. However, while I was at university, I found the game available on GOG and Origin that worked and even now 22 years after the game's release, I’m still playing it and its sequel Dungeon Keeper Two.  If you get the opportunity to play it, you're in for quite the treat.

L x

PS: Can we have 3 now please?

Friday, 8 February 2019

The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris

 Hello Readers, 

This book is based on interviews that were conducted with Holocaust survivor and Auschwitz-Birkenau tattooist Ludwig (Lale) Sokolov told to Heather Morris before his death in 2006. There are Spoilers in this review and I talk about the concentration camps.

In April 1942, Lale, a Slovakian Jew, was transported to the concentration camps at Auschwitz-Birkenau after Lale had offered himself as a strong, able-bodied young man in the hope that it would save the rest of his family from being split up. On arrival, the Nazis changed his name to 32407. 

Not long after he arrived at the camp, Lale contracted typhoid. He was cared for by Pepan the man who had given him his identification tattoo and French academic. Pepan took Lale under his wing and set him to work as his assistant. He taught him how to keep his head down and mouth shut. 

Then one-day Pepan disappears and Lale was made the T├Ątowierer (German for tattooist). Partly due to his captors discovering that he spoke several languages - Slovakian, German, Russian, French, Hungarian and a bit of Polish. Lale was then tasked with permanently marking his fellow prisoners, given an assistant and had an officer assigned to monitor him, which gave him an appearance of protection.  

Being the T├Ątowierer gave Lale special perks such as more rations, better sleeping conditions and the ability to move around the camp more freely. He was able to exchange the money and prized possessions of those who died in the gas chambers for food and medicine. Lale was generous and provided for so many and saved lives. While giving a tattoo, he meets Gita and feels an instant attraction to her. Meeting her gives Lale a reason to survive. He uses his position for the greater good even through struggles and extreme suffering, with the hope of one day being with Gita forever, outside of the camp (I'm not crying! I have dust allergies). 

Imprisoned for over two and a half years, Lale witnessed horrific atrocities and barbarism but also incredible acts of bravery and compassion.  

First off, I loved this book I read it in one sitting (two hours) and it honestly took me a couple of days to get over the emotional roller coaster that is this book. As soon as I finished it, I rang my cousin trying to work out how I felt and from all the jumbled mess that came out was I was crying happy-sad tears. I was so happy because of the love that Lale and Gita shared but the circumstances of how they met each other are beyond heart-breaking. Told through the point of view of both Lale and Gita, Heather Morris has a lot to say, and she certainly touches a nerve. That being said and I mean this with no disrespect but I personally felt at times with Heathers writing style you could easily forget that this isn’t entirely a love story. I found myself that engrossed in Gita and Lales story my subconscious blurred out the bad but that might be down to me as the reader.

I don’t think I mentally prepared myself to read this book I cried in the first five pages and that was before we got anywhere near the camps. Lale surrendered himself to save his family and is in the cattle wagons on his way to Auschwitz-Birkenau and he thinks to himself “with the money and clothes he has, he might be able to buy himself out of whatever they are heading for, or at the very least buy himself into a safe job”. Even with a basic understanding of what happened during the Holocaust, you know this isn’t going to happen and it broke my heart as a reader and as a person. Having said I didn’t mentally prepare myself there were only two other times the book made me cry I broke down with Lale at one point and the last when I had finished the book and excuse the term but a little shell shocked. 

This book shows brutality, hatred, and evil but what I hope people take away is the compassion, strength, dignity and resilience that Lale and so many others named in this book showed.  

This book is ultimately about courage in the face of the horrors of the camps and loss of family, courage sustained by the strength of the human spirit and it's a love story that I'll never forget. This book should be read at least once. There is not much more I can add other than what Lale himself tells Morris - that he wanted his story recorded so "It would never happen again."

Having said all this if you look online you can see that the book has been called out for its authenticity I personally won’t go into it but I will include some links if you would like to have a look

Wednesday, 6 February 2019

Let’s talk about....Book Piracy

Hello Readers,
Before we start, I know I am probably preaching to the converted. Nevertheless, after seeing some of the negative comments that Samantha Shannon got for calling out pirate links to The Priory of the Orange Tree. The book isn’t being released for another 23 days (from when the link was posted now 20 Days). I had to weigh in, its irritating me so this might be a little ranty sorry.

Samantha has rightfully stated on twitter that “Someone has looked at the product of more than three years of my life and judged it to be worth nothing. Not even the price of a coffee. Nothing.” I Agree with her! Someone had the audacity to actually reply, “I disagree. Someone likes your book enough to post it online. *Blah Blah* You should try to see it as free advertising.” 


If you’re in the “free advertising” Club Goodbye leave my blog

So many authors have put blood, sweat, tears and so much more into their book than we will ever know. Anyone who truly loves and respects books and their authors wouldn’t pirate books online I’m sorry its simple!

Free advertisement would be a reviewing or tell people about the book simple! I wasn’t lucky enough to get an early copy of Priory and I chose not spoil its by reading the NetGalley sample. However, I have been posting when the book will be released because I am honestly excited to get my hands on it. Look how harmless that free advertising was!

I genuinely believe Authors are not attacking people who are too poor to afford their books, or anyone who can’t access a library! They are protecting their intellectual property and the time and effort that has gone into producing a unique world. Not everyone has the imagination or the determination to sit down and think of all the small details that go into a world that even us as readers may miss only notice in a reread.

Research by the Publishers Association has shown that most Ebook pirates tend to be from better off social and economic groups, and are aged between 31 and 50-something. Let’s be honest not really the group people who can’t afford books.

Every fiction book ever written is its own unique fully functional world that has been pulled out of someone’s imagination, imagine spending all that time and effort for someone to basically tell you all that work is not worth nothing not even the paper it’s printed on.

Authors have had trilogies cancelled through publisher because a of couple hundred people had pirated the book instead of buying, it has disastrous repercussions. Pirating the first book in a series can mean that publishing cancels book two its simple as that.   

 Shock! Horror! authors need to be paid. Authors can inspire new generations to think outside of the box and to achieve something and that deserves recognition. Once more for the people at the back Anyone who truly loves and respects books and their authors wouldn’t pirate books online!!!

L x

Monday, 4 February 2019

Dead[ish] (Deadish #1) by Naomi Kramer

Hello Readers,
Quick head up with this book is a short and Naomi’s humour might not be for everyone there's sex, death and lots of swearing, it's an engaging story and is told in a unique and interesting way. Having said that this short book was right up my street I have the same sense of humour as Naomi and I've read the DEADish series more than once. There are Spoilers in this review!
 I really enjoyed the premise of this story. Linda has had a very bad day her boyfriend Mike killed her. What he didn't expect was for Linda to come back as a ghost and try and mess with his life because he killed her. Linda's woke up, still on this plane of existence as she is unable to move on until she locates her missing body and Mike won't tell her what he did with it. So, Linda does what any of us would do as a ghost in this situation she haunts the hell out of him and plays pranks trying to avenge her untimely death. 

Linda pulls some hilarious pranks, I especially enjoyed the one when Mike woke up to discover Linda had dyed his hair blue, eyebrows green and skin orange or when the cops arrive at his house due to a noise complaint and he ends up going to jail thanks to the pot plants Linda has placed in the living room.  I'm all for disgruntled ghost causing havoc for those that wronged them in life, and Linda is absolutely brilliant as a vengeful ghost. Never mess with a woman like Linda, especially a ghost Linda! Amid all the pranks Linda hires a private detective, Trent, to find her body so she can try and find closure. On the brink, Mike seeks out an exorcist to rid himself of his vengeful ex. Unfortunately for him, his "exorcist" is actually a private investigator hired by Linda.

Naomi did an amazing job of giving us an exciting, enjoyable and funny read and the tone is very casual and the dialogue is exactly what you would expect from the characters. The development of the story through the various perspectives of the characters involved kept it interesting and for every new discovery, I found myself laughing and intrigued. This book has a great twisted sense of humour to carry you through. Full of sarcasm, wit, and you can't pack more into such a little book. Plus, the pranks the Linda pulls are priceless.

L x

Friday, 1 February 2019

The Orphanage of Gods by Helena Coggan

Hello Readers, 
Thank you, NetGalley and Hodder & Stoughton for the Ebook of The Orphanage of Gods by Helena Coggan for free in exchange for an honest review.
Publication Date: 21 February 2019

This is the first book I have read by Helena Coggan and I dont think it will be the last. Sorry its possibly a little early for a review but the release date is near my birthday and I want to give this book its own spotlight.  This review contains spoilers
 As soon as I saw that this was about Gods, I immediately wanted to get my hands on it and this feeling was only compelled further from reading the blurb…  The gods were all but wiped out, the children they left behind have been imprisoned in an orphanage and any who show signs of divine power vanish from their beds in the night, all knowledge of their existence denied. Who doesn’t want to dive in head first?  

The book is set in a world where there are humans, and gods (people with silver blood and magical powers). We also have half god, meaning that the person only has some of the attributes of a god. All of the Gods have varying powers it is very rare to find more than one person with the same power.  The gifts the Gods have are called demesne. 

The book starts in the middle of the action. Hero and her self-adopted brother are on the run and are racing to find their friend/sister Kestrel and the fearful Guardsmen on their trail. This scene had me on the edge of my seat, and kept me there. It was brilliant and this pace was kept up throughout the book. Two generations ago, Gods started to be born from mortal women and soon became so violent and unpredictable that the humans turned against them and started using the guardsmen to defeat the gods. As readers we are quickly introduced to Josh’s power, which is the ability to manipulate light.  We’re not immediately told what Hero’s power is, but it is clear that Josh is much more powerful than she is although she has the ability to heal others. Hero and Josh’s relationship is strained and is getting worse the more time that passes without Kestrel, Hero’s sister (not by blood). The three of them have stuck together since they met at the Orphanage  (where children are kept, in case they are gods) - it’s been them against the world for as long as they can remember.  

The world the book is set in is more modern than I thought it would be and I thought the world-building was done well. Although it would maybe nice to learn a little more about why people hate the gods. But aside from that, I thought this was a really strong element of the book. The book is written in three parts, each narrated in first person. Part one is told by Hero, a seventeen-year-old girl who has escaped from an orphanage with her brother Joshua. Part two is told by Raven a ten-year-old girl. Finally, part three is told from Kestrel's perspective. 

Everything we learn about the Orphanage is told through memories and sounds like a regular Orphanage. Then the realisation hits that that all the kids are there, because of two reasons either their parents were Gods and consequently killed, or are human and their parents were killed by the cross fire. Whilst in the Orphanage the kids hear of ‘The Resistance’, a group of surviving Gods that supposedly live in the North, who are trying to fight back against the Guardsmen.  They are told monstrous things about these Gods, but Hero is clever enough to realise that the Guard are probably lying 

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. I thought all the characters were very well built. There's a theme of power corrupting, for gods and humans alike ran throughout and kept my interest. I think it was entertaining while still having a lot of depth, and I would definitely recommend it to others.