29 Dec 2012

Carnegie Longlist 2013

CKG_CMYK_portraitHey guys, a few days ago, the 2013 Carnegie and Greenway longlist was released. Wooo! I can't wait till 19th March when the Shortlist is released. To find out more about them, go to http://www.carnegiegreenaway.org.uk/ .

Soo... Here are the nominations for the Carnegie Award:

Goldilocks on CCTV by John Agard
The True Tale of the Monster Billy Dean by David Almond
Soldier Dog by Sam Angus
The No. 1 Car Spotter and the Firebird by Atinuke
The Traitors by Tom Becker
The Terrible Thing That Happened to Barnaby Brocket by John Boyne 
Jasmine Skies by Sita Brahmachari
Spy For The Queen of Scots by Theresa Breslin 
Naked by Kevin Brooks
Kill All Enemies by Melvin Burgess 
Dead Time by Anne Cassidy
VIII by H.M. Castor 
Dying To Know You by Aidan Chambers 
The Broken Road by B.R. Collins
The Unforgotten Coat by Frank Cottrell Boyce 
15 Days Without a Head by Dave Cousins
After the Snow by S.D. Crockett
The Weight of Water by Sarah Crossan
Scramasax by Kevin Crossley-Holland 
Mortal Chaos by Matt Dickinson
Sektion 20 by Paul Dowswell
A Greyhound of a Girl by Roddy Doyle
Saving Daisy by Phil Earle
Buzzing! by Anneliese Emmans Dean
The Things We Did For Love by Natasha Farrant
Trouble in Toadpool by Anne Fine
Call Down Thunder by Daniel Finn
Far Rockaway by Charlie Fletcher
The Double Shadow by Sally Gardner
Maggot Moon by Sally Gardner
After by Morris Gleitzman
To Be A Cat by Matt Haig
A Face Like Glass by Frances Hardinge
Unrest by Michelle Harrison
Seraphina by Rachel Hartman
The Seeing by Diana Hendry
Daylight Saving by Edward Hogan
Hero on a Bicycle by Shirley Hughes
The Abominables by Eva Ibbotson
The Girl in the Mask by Marie-Louise Jensen
The Prince Who Walked With Lions by Elizabeth Laird
In Darkness by Nick Lake
The Brides of Rollrock Island by Margo Lanagan
Skulduggery Pleasant: Death Bringer by Derek Landy
Itch by Simon Mayo
At Yellow Lake by Jane McLoughlin
The Apothecary by Maile Meloy
The Treasure House by Linda Newbery
All Fall Down by Sally Nicholls
This Dark Endeavour by Kenneth Oppel
Hitler's Angel by William Osborne
Wonder by R.J. Palacio
Gods and Warriors by Michelle Paver
Burn Mark by Laura Powell
Black Arts: The Books of Pandemonium by Andrew Prentice and Jonathan Weil
Mister Creecher by Chris Priestley
This is Not Forgiveness by Celia Rees
Goblins by Philip Reeve
Black Heart Blue by Louisa Reid
Pendragon Legacy: Sword of Light by Katherine Roberts
Midwinterblood by Marcus Sedgwick
A Boy and a Bear in a Boat by Dave Shelton
The Sleeping Army by Francesca Simon
The Flask by Nicky Singer
The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
A Skull in Shadows Lane by Robert Swindells
A Waste of Good Paper by Sean Taylor
Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

I have set myself a challenge to read all these books before the shortlist is released.

28 Dec 2012

Book Review #8

Title: We Die Alone
Author: David Howarth
Date Published: May 1955
Publisher: Collins
Age Rating: 12+
Genre: War Biography
Main Character :
     oJan Baalsrud
           Jan Baalsrud and  his three friends attempted to smuggle bombs into WW2 Norway as part of
           a sabotage mission. However, soon after arrival, they were betrayed by a man
         thought to be a friend. The only survivor, Jan is forced to make his way through
treacherous terrain in the hope of finding his way to Sweden.

Firstly, I found this book slightly boring. This was due to the fact that that the story was a bit slow
at times, making reading the book a bit tedious at times.

Another problem with the book was the fact that the story didn’t exactly draw me in. It took me
about a week to read this book because of how little the story appealed to me. Instead of reading
war stories, I was more interested in the latest post/pre apocalyptic story.

However, one of the good points of the story was the writers ability to describe. I loved the
intriguing way the author described Jan’s adventures, as if I was really there.

Overall, this was a good book that tried its best, but just wasn't me in the end.

Rating Out Of 5
۞۞ .

14 Oct 2012

Book Review #7

  Title: Blue Is For Nightmares
  Author: Laurie Faria Stolarz
  Date Published: November 8th 2003
  Publisher: Llewellyn Publications
  Age Rating: 11+
  Genre: YA Paranormal
  Main Characters :
  • Stacey
  • Amber
  • Drea
  • Donnovan
  • Chad
  • Maura
  • Veronica
   On the outside, Stacey is an average teenage girl. However, there's one problem: she's psychic. Every night, Stacey has nightmares about the death of her best friend, Drea. The last time this happened, someone close to her heart died. Determined to right the wrongs she did when she kept her gift quiet and did nothing to help, Stacey soon finds herself in a world of mystery and adventure, where one wrong move could kill her best friend. Despite being no stranger to magic, Stacey is soon faced with the worrying fact that magic has its limits and that even witches cant save the world all the time.

I absolutely adored this book. Personally, I think it was an amazing new read into a world rarely explored by me.

Firstly, BIFN had an wonderful plot. It was fast enough to be interesting, yet not too fast that you had to keep on looking back to see who each person was and what they were going on about. The plot was also full of mystery and deceit, my favourite kind of story.

Another good point, was the characters. You found yourself really empathizing with them, like Drea and her cheating boyfriend and Stacey with her malfunctioning psychic powers and night-time problems.

Lastly, you always felt part of their world, even after you had finished the book. You found yourself wanting to slap some characters, and hug others. You find yourself not wanting to put the book down night and day. You find yourself promising only one more paragraph, whilst secretly hoping that it will never end and knowing that you mean to break your pledge in a few moments when the next character finds themselves in a life-or-death situation.

The only problem that I found with it, was that about three quarters of the way through the book, I realised who the murdering stalker person was. After that, the book wasn’t as fun, however, this had given me another incentive to read on: to find out if I was right.

Despite the bad point, I still found this a remarkable new read.

Rating Out Of 5

17 Aug 2012

Book Review #6

Title: Dark Inside
Author: Jeyn Roberts
Date Published: 2nd September 2011
Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books
Age Rating: 13+
Genre: Post Apocalyptic
Main Characters:
  • Aries
  • Clementine
  • Mason
  • Michael
  • Nothing

Plot :
 After a wave of deadly earthquakes nearly destroys the Earth, the surviving few watch as their loved ones, friends and neighbous turn in to killing machines, that will stop at nothing to slaughter the human race. Now, there only seems to be one rule, one law: kill, or be killed...

   One of the problems I found with this book, was the narration. Usually in books with multiple narrators, I don't have any trouble knowing who was who. However, in this book, I had to keep on skipping back to find out how the character got there, or who they were in the first place.
   Another problem, was how similar Aries and Clementine were. This was also the same with Mason and Michael. I would have prefered the book if they could have some obvious differences in their personalitys.
Despite these problems with four of the main characters, I really enjoyed reading Nothing's story. It helped me get some extra insight into the story, and really kept me on the edge of my seat. I hope that this character is also included in the next book, Rage Within.
   I also loved the storyline. It was fast, fun and full of surprises. I literally couldn't put this thrilling book down.
   Overall, I found this an enjoyable read, however, there were a few problems with it. I can't wait to read Rage Inside, but hope that some of the problems that I found with this book don't apply to the sequel.

Rating out of 5:


1 Aug 2012

Book Review #5

Title: Speak
Author: Laurie Halse Anderson
Date Published: 22nd October 1999
Publisher: Puffin
Age Rating: 12+
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Main Characters
·        Melinda
·        Andy
·        Rachel
·        Ivy
·        Heather
·        Nicole

   Melinda had been invited to the party by her best friend Rachel. Halfway through it, she called the police. This left her as a loner, the outsider who had ruined their party. In this stunning story, one girl is trying to break free of a silence that has gripped her and won’t let her go.

   I absolutely adored this book. When I picked up this book from a genre that I usually avoid, I wasn’t expecting something this amazing and emotional.
   I loved the way that the speech in the story was usually indirect, yet when it wasn’t, it was as if the story was a play. I think that this was a very unique way to narrate a story, and I really enjoyed it.
   I also liked the way that the author created a realistic image of all the characters in my mind. It helped me really bond with Melinda and sympathise with her. I ended up feeling as if I was there, witnessing the story happening infront of me.
   Another thing I liked about Speak, was the speed that the story developed at. It wasn't so fast that you ended getting confused, however it wasn't slow and boring, which makes you want to either skip bits, or stop reading completely.
   Overall, I think that Speak was an amazing book, which drew you into the story and bought the characters to life. I really enjoyed reading it, and I can't wait to read more novels by this author.

Rating (out of 5)

31 Jul 2012

Feature and Follow #107

Gain New Blog FollowersHi guys, I am taking part in this week's Feature and Follow, hosted by Alison Can Read and Parajunkee. What you have to do, is follow them, follow this weeks featured blogs and put this button in a post so that people can post comments here to say that they have followed me. You also have to fill aut a Linky form, so that people can find your blog. Click Here to go the this week's Feature and Follow Friday. By the way, I named last weeks post Feature and Follow #109, however it was in fact #106! Sorry for any confusion that this may have caused you.
 This weeks FF question is:  
What was your favorite book that you were REQUIRED to read when you were in school?
The answer to this is To Kill A Mockingbird. I thought this was a really good book, with a good plot and storyline. I also loved the way that it was narrated by a child.

20 Jul 2012

Feature and Follow #106

Hi guys, I am taking part in this week's Feature and Follow, hosted by Alison Can Read and Parajunkee. What you have to do, is follow them, follow this weeks featured blogs and put this button in a post so that people can post comments here to say that they have followed me. You also have to fill aut a Linky form, so that people can find your blog. Click Here to go the this week's Feature and Follow Friday.
Gain New Blog Followers

17 Jul 2012

Book Review #4

Title: Fear
Fear (Gone, #5)Author: Michael Grant
Date Published: 3rd April 2012
Publisher: Electric Monkey
Age Rating: 12+
Genre: Dystopian
Main Characters
·         Sam
·         Peter/Little Petey/Pete
·         Caine
·         Astrid
·         Diana
·         Giaphage
·         Connie(Sam’s Mum)
·         Dekka
·         Brianna
·         Lara
·         Quinn
·         Drake
·         Penny
·         Edilio

Storyline (From Goodreads):
   It's been one year since all the adults disappeared. Gone.

   Despite the hunger and the lies, even despite the plague, the kids of Perdido Beach are determined to survive. Creeping into the tenuous new world they've built, though, is perhaps the worst incarnation yet of the enemy known as the Darkness: fear.

   Within the FAYZ, life breaks down while the Darkness takes over, literally—turning the dome-world of the FAYZ entirely black. In darkness, the worst fears of all emerge, and the cruellest of intentions are carried out. But even in their darkest moments, the inhabitants of the FAYZ maintain a will to survive and a desire to take care of the others in their ravaged band that endures, no matter what the cost.

   Fear, Michael Grant's fifth book in the bestselling dystopian Gone series, will thrill readers . . . even as it terrifies them

   I really enjoyed this book. I loved all the intricate plots and the way the author portrayed all of the characters in the FAYZ.
   This is the 5th and penultimate book in the Gone series, and in my view, is well worth reading. It has a lot of characters, but despite what can sometimes happen in books, you don’t get confused with who is who.
   I loved the way the plot moved, which was not so slow that you got bored reading, but not fast enough for you to find yourself confused and wondering what was happening.
   I also liked the way the storyline flicked between the Lake, Perdido Beach, Peter, Clifftop, The Mine and Outside. This made the story even more interesting and helped me understand more.
   Another thing I liked was the ending. I won’t say what happened, but it made me really want to continue reading and to want to read Light, the next book in the series.
   All in all, I felt that this was a very good book full of cliff hangers, narrators and excitement. Because of this, I feel that this book is a book worthy of the Carnegie Medal.

Rating (out of 5)

10 Jul 2012

Book Review #3

Title: Uglies
Author: Scott Westerfield
Date Published: 1st January 2005
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Age Rating: 12+
Genre: Distopian
Main Characters:
  • Tally Youngblood
  • Shay
  • Peris
  • Dr Cable
  • David
Plot (from Goodreads):
   Everybody gets to be supermodel gorgeous. What could be wrong with that? Tally is about to turn sixteen, and she can't wait. Not for her license -- for turning pretty. In Tally's world, your sixteenth birthday brings an operation that turns you from a repellent ugly into a stunningly attractive pretty and catapults you into a high-tech paradise where your only job is to have a really great time. In just a few weeks Tally will be there.
But Tally's new friend Shay isn't sure she wants to be pretty. She'd rather risk life on the outside. When Shay runs away, Tally learns about a whole new side of the pretty world and it isn't very pretty. The authorities offer Tally the worst choice she can imagine: find her friend and turn her in, or never turn pretty at all. The choice Tally makes changes her world forever.

   I found this book on Goodreads, and I am glad I did. Uglies is a thrilling book with a fast storyline and a unique plot.
   I also really liked the characters. They all had really strong personalities and you could really interact with them because of this. My favorite character was Tally, because she was really brave and I liked the way she struggled to decide what whether she should protect Shay and in doing so break her promise to Peris (her friend who had turned pretty 3 months earlier) that she would join him in New Pretty Town as a perfect pretty, or to betray Shay and join Peris in New Pretty Town. I also liked the way she handled this.
  I also liked the way the story developed. The pace was good: not too slow so that you got bored with the way the story dragged on, and not too fast so that you kept on forgetting what was happening and how it had happened.

   I loved the way that this book made everything in it seem real. When reading, I sometimes found it hard to realise that there was no Tally Youngblood. This helped make the story very heart provoking and sad at parts.
   Overall, I really enjoyed this book, with its heartwarming story about perfection gone horribly wrong and loyalty to friends. This is an AMAZING series, and if you haven’t read it, then you should.

Rating out of 5:


4 Jul 2012

Book Review #2

Title: Unwind
Unwind (Unwind, #1)Author: Neal Shusterman
Date Published: 6th November 2011
Publisher: Simon and Shuster
Age Rating: 12+
Genres: Young Adult and Distopian
Main Characters:
  • Connor
  • Lev 
  • Risa

Plot (From Goodreads):
The Second Civil War was fought over reproductive rights. The chilling resolution: Life is inviolable from the moment of conception until age thirteen. Between the ages of thirteen and eighteen, however, parents can have their child "unwound," whereby all of the child's organs are transplanted into different donors, so life doesn't technically end. Connor is too difficult for his parents to control. Risa, a ward of the state is not enough to be kept alive. And Lev is a tithe, a child conceived and raised to be unwound. Together, they may have a chance to escape and to survive.

   One good thing about the book was the characters personalities. They were really strong, so you could really interact with them and you really wanted them to survive.

   Another goood thing was the narration. It was forever skipping between people, which helped you understand their point of view and what everyone belived. This reminded me a bit of Mortal Chaos by Matt Dickinson and the multiple narrators and storylines that weaved together to create one amazing story.
   I found some bits a little bit confusing, and because of this, I had to flip back a few pages sometimes, just to check what was happening. This, as far as I was concerned, was really the only thing that let this book down.
   The fact that everything slotted together was another good point. Everything was explained at the end, except what happens next to Connor, lev and Risa, which likely to be explained in the sequel, Unwholly, which comes out in August 2012.
   Overall, I thought that this was a really good boook, despite being a bit disturbing. It had a great plot and was set at a fast pace, so you never got bored. However, I found a few bits a bit confusing, which sort of ruined the story for me.

Rating out of 5:
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