Thursday, 17 September 2015

5 Reasons Why I Fangirl Over Fangirl

Hey, bookworms! Those of you who follow me on Twitter may have noticed that I've been taking part in a Fangirl readalong, hosted by MyKindaBook, over the past couple of weeks! The readalong reminded me just why I adore Rainbow Rowell's awesome book so much, so I made a video about it over on my booktube channel!

Feel free to share some of your favourite Fangirl moments in the comments!

Monday, 7 September 2015

REVIEW: George by Alex Gino

Bookish Details:
Pages: 240 Hardcover
Publisher: Scholastic
Release Date: August 25th 2015
Buy it From: Amazon - Amazon UK


When people look at George, they think they see a boy. But she knows she's not a boy. She knows she's a girl.

George thinks she'll have to keep this a secret forever. Then her teacher announces that their class play is going to be Charlotte's Web. George really, really, REALLY wants to play Charlotte. But the teacher says she can't even try out for the part . . . because she's a boy.

With the help of her best friend, Kelly, George comes up with a plan. Not just so she can be Charlotte -- but so everyone can know who she is, once and for all.

My Review:
Everyone sees George as a boy, but she was born to be a girl. She is desperate to play the lead role of Charlotte in her school’s adaptation of Charlotte’s Web, but George’s audition isn’t taken seriously because others don’t see her true gender.

With her best friend, Kelly, the pair come up with a plan to put George on the stage in her dream role. Together, they will show the school, her teachers, and her mother, who George was truly born to be.  
This is such an important story, and I am so glad that it’s been published. 

George is a transgender story that kids can read, find a character they can relate to, and be reminded that they are not alone. Not only does it provide support for the transgender kids out there who need representation, but it also educates everyone, giving them an insight into a situation that they may not fully understand, but need to. This type of diversity in children’s books is a joy to see, and hopefully we’ll be seeing a lot more of it.  

George is a fantastic character and her friendship with Kelly is delightful. Kelly accepts her as she is, and is the first person to really encourage George to be herself. I adored watching George develop throughout the story with Kelly at her side. 

I also found her relationship with her brother touching to read. Scott is your ‘typical’ teenage boy, and I didn’t quite know what to expect when George finally opened up to him, but the entire scene played out beautifully. He was so understanding and dealt with everything perfectly. It made me rather emotional whilst reading.

This book is so honest in showing what kids like George have to go through, not only at school whilst facing bullies, but also at home with their families, and in their own heads. I only hope that one day books like this end up being taught and discussed in schools, teaching kids that it’s okay be whoever they want to be, and also teaching the adults around them to be supportive and understanding.

George has been a complete pleasure to read. Heart-breaking at times, but utterly beautiful and insightful. I can’t wait for people to fall in love with George, or as she’d prefer to be known, Melissa, as I have.

Royal Rating:


Thursday, 3 September 2015

REVIEW: The Blackthorn Key by Kevin Sands

Bookish Details:
Pages: 320 Paperback
Publisher: Puffin
Release Date: September 3rd 2015
But it From: Amazon - Amazon UK 

London, 1665. Fourteen-year-old Christopher Rowe is apprenticed to master apothecary Benedict Blackthorn. In Blackthorn's shop, Christopher learns the delicate secrets of transforming simple ingredients into powerful medicines, potions and weapons. His beloved master guides him with a firm, steady hand - instilling him with confidence and independence that prove increasingly vital as Christopher learns of a mysterious cult preying on the most learned men in London. The murders are growing closer and closer to home and soon Christopher is torn from the shop with only a page of cryptic clues from his master and the unambiguous warning: 'Tell no one'.

Helped by his best friend, Tom, Christopher must decipher his master's clues, following a trail of deceit towards an unearthly secret with the power to tear the world apart.

My Review:

When I read the blurb for this book, it sounded full of exciting mysteries and adventure, and that is exactly what it delivered. With plenty of puzzles to unravel and codes to crack, The Blackthorn Key is gripping from the very start.

Christopher Rowe had spent his life in an orphanage until the day Benedict Blackthorn took him to be his apprentice. Learning as much as he can about being an apothecary, Christopher lives with Master Benedict in his London shop, helping customers with a variety of aliments. 

But something dark is happening on the streets of the city. Apothecaries are being murdered, their bodies turning up showing signs of torture. Rumours circulate about a cult being behind the attacks, but no one knows for certain, and Christopher is worried. Pretty soon, Christopher finds himself on the run. All he has are a series of clues from his Master. Clues that he hopes will help him discover why these attacks are happening, and how to stop them. 

The Blackthorn Key was such a fun read. I loved immersing myself into Christopher’s world of puzzles and conspiracies, especially since it was set during the 17th century! I really enjoyed the fact that this was a story set in historical London, rather than in a fantasy world.

Christopher was a wonderful character, and I adored his bond with his best friend, Tom. They had a great relationship and provided just the right amount of humour throughout the story. I also loved the precious moments between Christopher and Master Benedict, and their loyalty to each other. 

There were plenty of interesting characters to fill the pages, a lot of whom I didn’t know whether to trust or not. I spent most of the book trying to figure out who the bad guys were, and who Christopher could safely go to. It certainly made for tense reading!

The plot itself is gripping and fast-paced, and the twists and turns kept me reading well into the night. Just when you’ve think you’ve figured something out, you discover there’s a lot more to the story. I was utterly hooked on every chapter. 

This book truly was a joy to read. It has a little bit of everything to offer, even a sidekick pigeon. This is a stunning debut and I’m definitely excited to see what the author has in store next!

Royal Ratings:

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