A charming book, I knew ‘The Murderer’s Ape’ was going to be a thrilling read as soon as I turned the cover and saw the beautiful map outlining the journey the reader will follow. From the beginning, it was certain that Sally Jones was not a usual narrator – the fact that the gorilla lives among humans, completely understanding but does not speak any of their language makes for an interesting perspective on the story line. Her human qualities, like being able to help sail the ship and use a typewriter, is intriguing, and as soon as I read the first chapter I wanted to know more about how the Chief and Jones ended up unemployed and looking for day-to-day work. I love when books begin in the future because it leaves a framework for the story to follow, and it means that I am able to restrain myself to not flick to the last page straight away! It’s not often that I read adventure books because sometimes they tend to become quite hard to follow, but this novel seemed to flow with ease and I found myself turning the pages, eager to find out the next piece in the puzzle. A joy for anyone who loves Philip Pullman, I’m sure.
Krakow, Poland, 1939. A small doll named Karolina is brought to life at the will of a doll maker’s fingertips. War is approaching Poland, and Karolina must choose whether to help her kind friend or to return to The Land of The Dolls. Neither choice is easy, but she must make a decision soon before her little heart flutters to a stop.
Written seamlessly, The Dollmaker of Krakow is a truly magical book, one that will leave you breathless every time you fold the page. I found myself devouring the chapters, admiring the beautiful designs on each page which just add to the intricacy of Romero’s storytelling. A truly unique idea that effectively stops time for the reader, and welcomes the belief that dolls are real, and have the potential o be real. I can only imagine what little girls and boys must feel like when reading this, big smiles touching their ears when their parents finish the chapter. Nevertheless, I thoroughly enjoyed reading about Rena and the Dollmaker, and especially Karolina, so I do think young adults will love this too.
It puts across such an important message that is still relevant to our society despite being set over 50 years ago; that everyone is equal, and no one has the right invade someone else’s privacy. However, through the Dollmaker’s magic and Karolina’s continuous positivity, Romero implies that hope can always be found even in the darkest of times. A fairy tale for men and women, girls and boys alike, this stunning novel is the perfect autumn read at home. I would recommend this novel to all who believe magic exists in the world (in other words, 10+) and who enjoyed The Boy in Striped Pyjamas.
Thank you to Walker Books for allowing me to review this gorgeous book! It will be published on October 5 2017.
‘Love means holding tight
Love means letting go’
Countless is a moving and emotional novel that follows the story of Hedda, a girl very much controlled by her mind. She struggles with her eating disorder on a day to day basis, and until she takes a pregnancy test, her life has quietened down. She knows deep down that she cannot give up this baby, but she is also terrified of the weeks that will follow.
Countless is raw, and treats mental health the way any teenager would who has been fighting one as long as she can remember. It felt uncomfortable at times reading parts of the novel, but I understand that it is an important issue to tackle today in society. Gregory uses this novel as an allegory to show that many other girls are facing similar problems which they find themselves struggling alone. Countless reminds the reader that we are not alone and things will get better.
I loved the characters and Hedda in particular – I feel like her character was already developed from the start which added to the plot and gave the reader a reason to carry on. Why has her life ended up like this? Will she be able to cope with the bump and her eating disorder at the same time? At first, I had my doubts about Robin, the boy next door. He sounded very cliche to me but as the novel progressed he reader learns more about his character that sets him apart from other characters.
All in all, I didn’t enjoy Countless as much as I thought I would, but it is an acquired genre and I felt myself likening to Hedda as I read more. A sensitive topic that Gregory captures successfully through Hedda’s fight story.
A simple concept that not many people take the time to think about: what would you do if you won the lottery? And I’m not talking about the standard lottery winnings- I’m thinking of the jackpot. Millions upon millions of pounds are won across the world by few lucky individuals. But what many don’t consider is if it is luck or if it’s something else entirely? Smith explores this in her new book, Windfall, when Alice buys a lottery ticket as a one-off for her best friend’s birthday. The events that unravel are so spectacular that I found myself thinking that fate isn’t such a weird idea any more. I read this book (bearing in mind it was over 400 pages) in less than a day- it was so easy to read but funny and engaging at the same time. I recommend any young adult to pick it up as it’s the type of book you could leave on the side and would still be loved months later. I found myself laughing out loud and pining for the characters as if they were my friends. Loved it!
*this review was for lovereading (link on the side)*
Here’s a review of the book I’m currently reading and my thoughts of it so far (reviewed for Love Reading, link on the side)
The Bone Gap is a unique and fascinating book that, can I just add, has an amazing front cover! I know covers don’t mean everything but generally when you get a cover this good, with an intriguing title and questions left for the reader in the first chapter, you know it’s going to be a good read. Despite it being an obvious young adult’s book, it is relatively easy to read. Ruby creates magic through the words – every character and plot twist is there for a reason and this becomes more apparent as the book progresses. I really like the quote, ‘the bones of the world were a little looser here… leaving spaces one could slip into and hide…’ – I think this one quote depicts Ruby’s beautiful use of language and the powerful world she creates with it. Whimsical and fantastical, this tale is perfect for a winter’s day read.
I hope everyone’s having a great day! The Sweet Review x
Hi everyone 🙂
Today’s post is another review for you all – Whisper to Me by Nick Lake. I was very excited when I received this book from lovereading, as I have read a lot of his books, like There Will Be Lies and In Darkness. In Darkness is one of my favourite books and There Will Be Lies was also really good, so of course I was expecting great things from this book.
And let me tell you, Whisper to Me DEFINITELY lived up to my expectations.
The book is actually in the form of a love letter, from Cassie to a certain ‘you’, whom we don’t find out about until a bit later on. I was immediately gripped because of the unique format – it made me want to know more about Cassie and what happened for her to ‘hear voices’ and ‘miss you’.
As the novel progressed and Cassie revealed bit by bit about the past, I fell more and more in love with her as a character and the other protagonists. I think a lot of people can relate to Cassie, or maybe learn from her. She is extremely wise and I found myself storing what she said in my head for future quotes. I especially liked when she said, ‘We can’t keep anyone safe… so we just have to cling onto people when we can’.
Cassie and the other characters in this book, especially Paris and Julie, were very well developed. I almost feel like they could be real people, because they have flaws just like everyone else. They’re all a bit broken in some way, and I like that. I hate when books have very cliche and perfect characters because it affects the person reading them. By having a book with people who aren’t okay but fight through their problems, gives the reader hope.
I would give Whisper to Me 5 stars except for a few teeny things holding me back. Firstly, the title. I feel like it does relate to a lot of aspects of Cassie and can be seen as quite clever if you look at it through that perspective. But, I also feel like it could be improved upon. Secondly, the cover and the blurb. The cover, in my opinion, lets the book down a bit. Of course it looks pretty, but it doesn’t relate to the book at all. Whisper to Me contains a lot of gritty issues and I think that needs to be seen in the cover. To me when I picked it up, I thought it would be a YA romance. But Whisper to Me is so much more than ‘the most screwed-up love letter ever’, which is why I’m not giving it a five star. Instead, I think a four should do it!
Whisper to Me was fast paced and heart-racing – I never quite knew what was going to happen next. Although a long read, I became almost attached to the characters, and I must admit, a bit emotional towards the end. A book I won’t forget for a long time.
~The Sweet Review
Hello all! I hope you’re having a lovely day 🙂
So today I thought I’d put a little post together for you all. I know a lot of people struggle with making their bookshelf look good, or even choosing the bookshelf itself and making it match your room.
But fear no more!
I have all the answers to your questions, just keep on reading.
First of all, you need to have a bookshelf to be able to put your books in. I know that seems the most obvious thing, but it’s true! A while ago, I moved in to a flat and didn’t have time to think about the layout of my room. And eight months later, I still haven’t achieved my dream room layout. But, I do have a lovely little bookshelf that sits in the corner of my room. It’s more like a book-cabinet (that’s probably not a thing but now it is).
In the summer, when I rejuvenate my room with the money I’ve saved, I am going to have three shelves above my bed. This will give me more space for my endless supply of books and will fit in better with my room as a whole.
So as you can see there are lots of different types of bookshelves to buy, and even to make, if you’re into DIY. And once you’ve got your bookshelf sorted, the next step is to sort out your books.
There are a number of ways you can do this which I went through when sorting out my bookshelf. I used YouTube to help me sort out my books and I also came up with a few myself:
- Colour-coding – the ultimate art of sorting your books to make them look beautiful. It’s not the most sensible way to do things but it’s DEFINITELY the prettiest! My bookshelf at the moment is sorted using this method, going from white to red on the first shelf, then red to turquoise on the next and on the last shelf it goes through the colours purple, blue and black.
- Author’s name – this is the pretty simple way to sort out your books – by the name of the author. You can base it on their first name but it’s typically done using their second name.
- Series and singulars – yes, I made up this name. I call this series and singulars because it consists of the books sorted into either series or single ‘one-offs’. With practise, you could make this quite pretty by adding little touches, such as themed bookmarks or Pop Vinyl figures. This one does take a lot of effort, which is why I haven’t done this method, but it IS very rewarding!
And there you have it! Of course there are many more ways to sort out your bookshelf but the three I mentioned are my personal faves. However, putting aside methods and all that malarkey, the best way to have a nice bookshelf is to have nice books! When sorting out your bookshelf, think to yourself, do I really need this book? Will I want to read it again? And by doing this, you will easily be able to get rid of books you don’t need. I must have given more than twenty books to charity, and now my bookshelf displays only the best!
I’m glad I sorted out my bookshelf – it was about time! And if you have piles of books lying everywhere like I did, it’s about time to sort yours out too.
I hope these little tips help!
~ The Sweet Review
Hi everyone! I hope you’re all having a great day 🙂
So, a couple of days ago I realised I had 150 followers on WordPress! That’s insane! I now have 156 lovely people following my blog, and yes, I know only a small amount of that number read my posts, but you know what? That doesn’t matter. I’m happy because it shows how far this blog has come, and it’s another little milestone I’ve reached.
I’m very glad that I started this blog, nearly five years ago, because it’s become a huge part of my life that I would never take away for anything. I was thinking of thanking specific people but being forgetful me, I’ve decided not to. But instead, I just thought I’d say: THANK YOU! Thank you for reading my posts and making my day with your lovely comments, both on here AND on Instagram.
Speaking of Instagram, I’ve nearly reached 150 followers over there as well. I know a few people discovered me and my blog through my Instagram, so thank you to those people 🙂 and vice versa, you may have discovered my Instagram through my blog. My Instagram is merely a backup of my blog, however I do spend a lot of time and effort into taking the photos. So do head on over there and have a little look!
Once again, thank you so much to all of you who have supported me these past five (nearly) years – here’s to many more!
~ The Sweet Review