Top 5 Wednesday| Fandoms You Are No Longer Apart Of.

I still like to believe that I'm still part fangirl. It's dissolved as I have gotten older, just not completely. Not yet. 

And the thing is all these fandoms still hold a piece of me. To some degree I still like these books/fandoms, but I find it hard to get that excited about them like I once did.

The Hunger Games (The Hunger Games #1)
Susanne Collins

Joined Fandom: 2011-2014

Who wasn't a tribute back in the day?

The OG Young Adult dystopia, that begun the boom of 2012.

I used to re-read these every year. EVERY. YEAR. I should do that again, once my TBR is back to what it was.





The Mortal Instruments (The Shadowhunter Chronicles #1)
Cassandra Clare

Joined Fandom: 2008- 2015-ish

This one is tricky, because it's not that I no longer love the books. But, as time has gone on I have just lost all motivation to talk to anyone who is a 'Shadowhunter'. Nor do I find myself indulging in fanfiction.

Yet, I still consider myself a Shadowhunter. It's weird?



My love for this fandom has completely dissipated since work on the TV show began. A part of me will always see Lily Collins and Jamie Campbell Bower as Clary and Jace. 

And I find the TV show an insult- I just don't like it. I can't get past the first episode, Just no.

But, I will always reach for Cassie's book, there is just great comfort in them. 

Fun fact- if you couldn't tell already, my blog name is derived from the "City of XXX" format of each of the six books in the The Mortal Instrument series.


Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass #1)
Sarah J. Maas

Joined Fandom: 2013-2016

ERGH. 

Here's the thing. I first read Throne of Glass back when it was first released with that typical YA blond girl in a dress cover. And I loved it. 

I even loved Queen of Shadows. And then Empire of Storms happened. And I'm kind of sick of her territorial fae males. They aren't romantic! And how things just seem to be a quick fix in her books.

I will probably finish the series, just because I want an end to all this. But, it needs to hurry-the-hell-up!

Sherlock (BBC Adaption)
Written by Steven Moffat & Mark Gatiss

Joined Fandom: 2010-2017

Oh boy. I'm admitting this one. I still love the show. It's still one of my all time favourites, even with the complete meltdown on series 4.

Don't get me wrong- I still delve into Johnlock fanfiction. 

Yes, I am one of them. I am completely gutted that they didn't push the boundaries on this one and make Johnlock canon. That's my main complaint, apart from the poor writing and feeling the essence of what the show was way back in the day.

I get that shows need to change, but the format just never felt right.

Beautiful Creatures (The Caster Chronicles #1)
Kami Garcia, Margaret Stohl

Joined Fandom: 2013-2014

This was a very short lived fandom. I adored these books when I first read them back in 2013. The movie was coming out, and I was pumped. I actually still really loved the film, except how they changed basically everything.

Looking back, I still really liked the first book and the third and fourth. Just the Lena Duchannes was just an annoying motherf@!*er in book two.

Oh well- RIP.

What about you guys? Any that you can recognise as your past selves or is there another fandom that you used to let consume all your thinking time?

Let me know!

Blog Tour| The Space Between the Star [Extract + Giveaway]

The Space Between the Stars
Anne Corlett

UK Publisher: Macmillan
Release Date: 1st June, 2017

Find on Goodreads

Synopsis:


Jamie Allenby wakes, alone, and realises her fever has broken. But could everyone she knows be dead? Months earlier, Jamie had left her partner Daniel, mourning the miscarriage of their baby. She’d just had to get away, so took a job on a distant planet. Then the virus hit.
Jamie survived as it swept through our far-flung colonies. Now she feels desperate and isolated, until she receives a garbled message from Earth. If someone from her past is still alive – perhaps Daniel – she knows she must find a way to return.

She meets others seeking Earth, and their ill-matched group will travel across space to achieve their dream. But they’ll clash with survivors intent on repeating humanity’s past mistakes, threatening their precious fresh start. Jamie will also get a second chance at happiness. But can she escape her troubled past, to embrace a hopeful future?

This was pitched to me as: a unique dystopian fiction novel; a dramatic road-trip through the stars and an novel with  an exploration of the very human tendency to look for patterns and meaning in our lives.
I am yet, to still, write a review for this one, but I had to get involved. Here's an extract and the chance to win a copy:
From Chapter One
She walked over to the cupboard. Underwear, a pair of jeans. She pulled them on. No T-shirts.
The washing line. She’d been hanging out laundry when the first spasms had sent her to her knees, and then, by slow increments, to the medicine drawer.
She stood still. Until she went outside, this could all just be a game of what if?
Nought point nought nought nought one.
‘Shut up.’ Her voice sounded thin and rusty, and she swore, another harsh scrape of sound, then opened the door.
The sun was high overhead, the sky its usual denim blue, fading to smoky marl at the horizon. Outside the croft a halfline of washing swayed in the breeze. At one end, a bed sheet trailed from a single peg, the line sagging under its weight. The laundry basket was on its side, her clothes streaked and crumpled in the dirt.
She realised she’d instinctively wrapped the towel around her before stepping outside, just as though one of the farmhands might wander by with a casual wolf whistle.
Little things, she thought. It was too easy to forget, to fall back into past habits, paying too much attention to all the tiny, insignificant things.
She kept the towel clamped against her sides until she’d unpegged a grey T-shirt, and pulled it over her head. Her boots were abandoned by the door, as usual, and she sat to lace them up.
The birds had scattered over to the boundary fence, their quarrel muted by distance. The turbine turned quietly, and the cattle grumbled from the barn. She stood up, stretching her cramped limbs, forcing herself to look around. The main house was still and silent and she turned away, towards the open land beyond the station fences. A couple of faint scraps of cloud drifted over the hills, carrying a vague promise of rain.
Her thoughts were spiralling out, beyond the simple fact of the warm breeze and clear sun. This world had long growing seasons, regular rainfall, a simple infrastructure. It would be an easy enough place to survive, if surviving became all there was.
No.
The door of the main house was closed, but the curtains were open. Someone could be looking out right now. Or perhaps someone had heard her. Maybe they were stumbling to the window as she stood there.
But she didn’t move.
There was a rumble from the barn. If the Calgarth herd had been milkers, they’d have been protesting their swollen neglect long and loud. But these were breeders, and their complaints were probably focused on being barn-bound and out of feed. If those basic needs were met, they wouldn’t be troubled by the decimation of the human world.
She turned away from those empty windows, and walked down to the barn, swinging back the bar that kept the cattle from the yard. She found the herd outside, gathered in the shade of the back wall, near a trough of greenish water and a pile of fodder spilled from an upended bin. The scattered feed spoke of someone using their last strength to make sure the herd had enough to last until . . . for a while.
Her heart felt small and hard, as if her illness had turned it into something other than flesh. She hadn’t spent much time with Jim Cranwell, who ran the farm, despite being his resident veterinarian, but he’d always been courteous. She’d had more to do with his grandchildren, who’d run in and out of the barn, clambering between stalls and treating the cattle like oversized pets. At first she’d wished they would leave her alone. She found their constant questions distracting, and she veered between patronising, oversimplified answers and curt, too-adult responses. But she’d got used to their presence, even playing the odd game with them, although she always tired of it before they did.
She’d have to go round the station and prop all the gates open. There was a stream near the boundary fence, so the cows would have water. She wasn’t sure what to do about the bulls. If she left them roaming free, they’d fight, but if she kept them separate, there’d be no new calves. What happened when there was no prospect of anything beyond this generation? What happened when . . .
She gripped the edge of the door frame, her breath growing ragged. There’d be other people who’d beaten the odds. She had to find them. Until she did, these thoughts would keep piling up until she was crushed beneath them.
She stood for a moment, breathing slowly, trying to think about nothing but the blue of the sky and the curve of the hills. Then she turned and walked, slowly and heavily, towards the silent house.
The Space Between The Stars by Anne Corlett is published by Pan Macmillan, 1 June 2017, £12.99, Hardback.
For a chance to win a copy of The Space Between the Stars, fill in the form below. 
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  • Closes 05/06/2017 (5th June, 2017)




Anne Corlett has an MA in Creative Writing from Bath Spa University and has won a number of awards for her short stories, including the H. E. Bates Award. She works as a criminal solicitor and freelance writer, and lives with her partner and three young boys in Somerset. The Space Between The Stars is her first novel.










31.05.2017- Welcome to day 5.
01.06.2017 - http://chouett.com

REVIEW| Windwitch [ARC]

Windwitch (The Witchlands #2)
Susan Dennard



12th January, 2017
Tor UK

Find on Goodreads

Synopsis for Truthwitch:

In a continent on the edge of war, two witches hold its fate in their hands.

Young witches Safiya and Iseult have a habit of finding trouble. After clashing with a powerful Guildmaster and his ruthless Bloodwitch bodyguard, the friends are forced to flee their home.

Safi must avoid capture at all costs as she's a rare Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lies. Many would kill for her magic, so Safi must keep it hidden - lest she be used in the struggle between empires. And Iseult's true powers are hidden even from herself.

In a chance encounter at Court, Safi meets Prince Merik and makes him a reluctant ally. However, his help may not slow down the Bloodwitch now hot on the girls' heels. All Safi and Iseult want is their freedom, but danger lies ahead. With war coming, treaties breaking and a magical contagion sweeping the land, the friends will have to fight emperors and mercenaries alike. For some will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.

Review:

The Cover:

I have gone from preferring the US cover to the UK one. Tor has got this one just... right. 

Unlike the quick cut and paste job they did for Truthwitch (sorry, but it's kind of true) they managed to blend the woodlands and Scott Grimando's final artwork into an overall appealing piece. It's calming. Like the eye of the storm, before all hell breaks loose. 

The palette is softer, earthier and green. It makes me question whether the covers are going to continue on with this softer tone or not. Or, is Bloodwitch going to be bolder?

The Content:

I'd describe these books like a turning wheel, Dennard's protagonists shifting to focus and have drive via another character. Windwitch moves from Safiya as our leading character to Merik and his journey.

Dennard set out to play with perspective, to show how there is no clean line between good and bad, between villain and hero. And she pulls it off. By introducing new points of views, our judgments are balanced- everyone has a perspective. No villain believes they are the bad guy.

And I may or may not like Vivia more than Merik... My little misunderstood bean.

Windwitch stands as a book that showcases an author who keeps pushing, keeps moving to make what they write to be the best that they can write. This book, for me, never slumped. It kept momentum, kept me turning the page and had me rethinking about my views.

I just want to put this out there, but not only does this have one of my favourite angsty romances going it also may have slipped in some hints at a fantastic lesbian romance and a character who is trans. I shall mention no more, seeing as I could talk all day about this. 

I think something that really keeps me thinking about this book and coming back to every sequel, giving it my love and time is the feminine power that ripples throughout the book series. Every female character never gets jealous of those more powerful then them, They acknowledge it and respect their power, in fact it is often the men who seek the power. It's empowering to women readers.

Thank you, Sooz.

Top 5 Wednesday| Favourite Minor Characters

I used to do a series called Waiting on Wednesday.

That stopped. I felt guilty about talking about new books when I have a massive back catalogue of books to read and enjoy. As a reader, I want to reach for those books rather then buy more.

However, I've missed posting on Wednesdays. Knowing that when my reading is slow due to Uni, its okay because I have something to post.

Top 5 Wednesdays is hosted by Thoughts on Tomes.

If you ever want to join the fun, join the Goodreads group- here.



Ogena-Maria
The Mime Order/ The Song Rising (The Bone Season series)
Samantha Shannon

Ogena-Maria is mentioned throughout all three books. And remains a rather minor character until the latest installment.

In The Song Rising, I think she has become more integral to the plot. Moving in between minor and side character.

I absolutely adore Ogena.  And her constant need to set fire to things. 




Iko

Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles)
Marissa Meyer

Iko is an android that assists our main character, Cinder, in her mechanics shops. She longs to have a human body, and fawns over guys... quite a bit.




Lucien
A Court of Thorns and Roses 
Sarah J. Maas

(fanart: http://phantomrin.tumblr.com/)

Maas' books aren't without their problems, but she sure does get her side and minor characters write. The character arc for Lucian is just everything. EVERYTHING.

I understand why people trash him. Or, overall dislike.

But his arc is what I lived for in ACOTAR, ACOMAF and ACOWAR.





Ilsa Flynn
This Savage Song (Monsters of Verity)
V.E. Schwab

Throughout This Savage Song, I was just enchanted about August's sister- Isla.

I wanted to know her story, who she was. She is an enigma. 

Plus the whole "Death God" thing that could be applied to her character. 

YES, PLEASE!
William "Bill" Weasley
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
J.K. Rowling

One thing that people should know about me is that my favourite Weasley is actually Bill. Followed shortly by Charlie. Ever since Goblet of Fire when he made his first appearance. 

And obviously as soon as I saw this topic, he was the first minor character I thought of.

His job is cursebreaker at Gringotts- how cool is that?! As well as, being laid back, funny and just all round cool. 

I just adore him. 

Enough said.

He has been portrayed twice in the Harry Potter films. Richard Fish was cast as Bill for the Egyptian family photograph in Prisoner of Azkaban and, again, by Domhnall Gleeson (About Time, Ex_Machina, and Frank).

REVIEW| The Shadow of What Was Lost [ARC]

The Shadow of What Was Lost (The Licanius Trilogy #1)
James Islington



Find on Goodreads


Synopsis:


It has been twenty years since the end of the war. The dictatorial Augurs - once thought of almost as gods - were overthrown and wiped out during the conflict, their much-feared powers mysteriously failing them. Those who had ruled under them, men and women with a lesser ability known as the Gift, avoided the Augurs' fate only by submitting themselves to the rebellion's Four Tenets. A representation of these laws is now written into the flesh of any who use the Gift, forcing those so marked into absolute obedience.


As a student of the Gifted, Davian suffers the consequences of a war fought – and lost – before he was born. Despised by most beyond the school walls, he and those around him are all but prisoners as they attempt to learn control of the Gift. Worse, as Davian struggles with his lessons, he knows that there is further to fall if he cannot pass his final tests. 

But when Davian discovers he has the ability to wield the forbidden power of the Augurs, he sets into motion a chain of events that will change everything. To the north, an ancient enemy long thought defeated begins to stir. And to the west, a young man whose fate is intertwined with Davian’s wakes up in the forest, covered in blood and with no memory of who he is…

Review

Usually, I would talk a bit about the cover and it's relationship to the book and any other initial thoughts. I'm not going to go into my full review process, because I DNF'd this one. (For those who doesn't know- Did Not Finish.) Although I chose not to read to the final page, I still feel like I have read enough of this book to make some judgment, and to pass on why it wasn't working for me.


I stopped reading The Shadow of What Was Lost at around 200 pages. The premise and the books comparisons was what initially intrigued me to the point that I had requesting an ARC from the publisher. It was pitched, compared and recommended to fans of Brandon Sanderson and Robert Jordan. Don't get your hopes up?

The world building and the characters that we are introduced to initially kept my interest enough to keep going after the first few chapters. The writing was good and accessible. 

Then I hit 150 pages in. 

Everything just fell apart. Every curveball felt convenient as a plot device and seemed like reading what the author needed to happen, rather then being the characters choice. It just didn't hold together and was jaded. I felt no attachment to these characters at all nor get excited about picking the book back up again. 

I just don't think reading the other 500 pages would have benefited me, in any way. As a University student, I don't have time to waste reading books I don't like, because I already have to do that as part of my degree! 
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