Monday, December 31, 2012

Review: Kill Me Softly - Sarah Cross

Are you a fan of fairytales ? Love renditions as much as I do ?
Looking for a new teen read to ring in the New Year as I bring to you the last books read for 2012 on The Phantom Paragrapher.
Review: Kill Me Softly - Sarah Cross - April 2012
As the year comes to a close, I have decided to participate in a New Years Read-a-thon and see how many books I can read till I ring in the New Year. The first on the list is Kill Me Softly by Sarah Cross.
Are you a fan of fairytales? Love reading the modern and contemporary renditions of the tales? I have always had a thing for fairytale novels and especially renditions of not only classics like The Flight of Gemma Hardy by Margot Livesy which was a 1950/1960's rendition of Jane Eyre but also of fairytales hence my latest phase of Kristine Grayson's books.
Kill Me Softly by Sarah Cross falls into that category as we meet Mirabelle aka Mira whose birthday is coming up fast , all she wants in the world is to find out what happened to her parents when she was little in the smalltown of Beau Rivage. Every year she has asked her guardians and they have forbidden her to go, so this year weeks before her birthday she decides to runaway to Beau Rivage. It is here though, that she seems to stumble across some not only unsavoury characters like Blue , but also meet some odd and handsome ones . Each person though in Beau Rivage - well at least in the group of friends that Mira has stumbled across are harbouring dark secrets. They are all in fact ancestors of the fairytale stories and what has happened each time to their ancestors will happen to them if they are marked with the fairytales birthmark scar.
For Mira, she is about to discover that her place in the world stands by the fairytale of Sleeping Beauty. What will trigger her slumber and will her prince be the one she falls in love with or will this fairytale end up taking a different but forbidden angle ?
Find out more in the Fairytale world of Kill Me Softly by Sarah Cross , this fateful New Years Eve.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Review: Standing up for Grace - Kristine Grayson

Looking for a quick and easy read ?
Review: Standing up for Grace - Kristine Grayson - July 2012
We meet Dave Encanto in the short story anthology "Geek Romance", now meet Dave and Ella aka Cinderella's two daughters Imperia and Grace. After being left on their grandparent's kingdom doorsteps , Imperia and Grace have been sent to the "Greater World" to live with their dad. However, this means attending private school.
Standing up for Grace is a short story and basically is one sister standing up for the other as Grace has been getting picked on and taunted by school bully Skylar and Imperia has decided that enough is enough and decides to take things into her own hands by teaching Skylar a lesson. What happens though when the lesson ends up getting out of control and the consequences maybe too much to handle? Read as Imperia heads to the "Kingdom" to gather advice from her Grandmother. 
Standing up from Grace is a good short story that holds a very memorable lesson and moral . It also shows us that when someone is a bully , it pays to look a little closer to their home lives or life as it may stem from there.
If you are looking for a fast and quick read as I read this in 45minutes on my lunchbreak at work, then Standing up for Grace is the short story for you.

Review: Breathless - Cole Gibsen

Are you in the mood for a mermaid book ? One which focuses more above the surface rather than under it ?
Review: Breathless - Cole Gibsen- March 2012
What would you do if your life changed in a flash ? Would you pretend nothing of it and sneak out at night when no-one could see you or would you tell someone even though you know it would seem crazy or far-fetched?
Meet Edith, out one day on a date forced by her Army Stepfather known as "Sir" a tragedy occurs and people will die and others injured badly. Edith though escapes with only a sore shoulder but what saved her in the ocean ? A creature that she can describe as a mermaid, but mermaids can't be real or can they be?
Saved by Bastian - a merman , Edith starts to develop a relationship with him though of course it has been said that Mermaids can't date humans and vice versa, yet the pair feel drawn together. Can Bastian and Edith overcome their mortal and immortal differences or will they realise that even love has to be sacrificed and that even relationships in order to save the friendships and memories made must be disbanded ?
Breathless is a hard review to write without giving the story away but it does tell the tale of how one girl with the help of her newfound friends was able to develop the courage to stand up to those who may cause her harm or in this case those who scare her and bully her whether it be mentally or verbally .
Breathless is a mixture of reality, edgy content with a sprinkle of immortal with the Mermaids storyline. It is one of those stories that is hard to describe in a review and must be read to form your own opinions.
BTW the Mermaids in this book are nothing like those described in Tera Lynn Childs Series "Forgive My Fins" etc.

Review: Geek Romance - Kristine Grayson

Are you a fan of short stories ?
Have you been following my reviews of my current favourite author Kristine Grayson ?
Here is a collection of Short Stories by Kristine Grayson celebrating all things Geek, yes you read right.. All things Geek not Greek with..............
Review: Geek Romance - Kristine Grayson - July 2012
Do you have a harbouring for the Geeks in the world ? Do you fall into the category of Geekster ? I have lately discovered the author Kristine Grayson and when I saw the title of this book I was intrigued as I wonder what type of stories would fall into the category of geek romance ? I'm not normally a short story person but this was quick and easy to read as it took me roughly 45 minutes to read on my lunchbreak today at work.  The first story was about Cinderella's Ex -Prince Charming aka Dave Encanto , Dave works as a book seller and is headed to a major book fair - reading this story I was jealous as its been one of my dreams to go to a major book conference like the BEA's. At the book fair he meets Snow White's Stepmother , can she prove with Dave's help that she really isn't an evil stepmother like the fairytales have perceived her to be ? The next story is about a dating agency called Eros.com which gets a visit from a couple of Greek Gods , Two stories featuring con artists/photography and the Wild West and another story that is actually been a topic that has featured in articles and lately in the headlines - the age-old question of Do I or Don't I take his last name when I get married ?
For a nice quick and easy read , check out Geek Romance complete with four stories of love admist the oddballs.

Review: Offside - MG Higgins

Are you into sports especially Soccer or depending where you live Football ?
Looking for a Teen Girl novel ?
Review: Offside - MG Higgins - January 2013
Do you remember that movie "Bend it Like Beckham" ? The film where the indian girl got to play soccer as she was amazing at it ? Even though the girl on the cover of Offside is white, I imagine as I read the story of her being Indian as her name is Faith Patel . Faith loves to play Soccer , it is her escape from her life as a babysitter and home-life, it is something she is good at . Though what happens when the coach starts offering Faith advice and she starts to take it the wrong way . Soon Faith has developed crushing feelings on her coach but it seems she's not the only one on the team to feel this way towards the coach. Can Faith get her head back into the game and focus on becoming the best soccer player she can be in order to help her recieve a college scholarship or will Faith soon discover that when someone is in love or in this case infatuation/lust that if you take your eye off the ball , everything else may crumble with it. A nice , quick and easy read that can show teen girls just how easy it can be to fall in love with a teacher or in the case of Offside - how fast it can be and dangerous to develop a crush on a married teacher.

Review: The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer - Michelle Hodkin

Looking for a new supernatural teen book to read ? One that will have you flipping the pages and when you have finished , wanting more from the author?
Review: The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer - Book #1 Mara Dyer Series - Michelle Hodkin - September 2011
When you read as much as I do , its always a bit touch and go with books as most of them have the same sort of storyline and it really all comes down to how the author executes the storyline and how they can write it , to whether or not the book will be great or not. This storyline is one that has been done a couple of times in different ways but I have to say I adored this book and loved it and cannot wait to read the next one :)
In "The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer" we meet Mara whom we discover was in an accident the previous school year which caused the deaths of three of her friends including her best friend Rachel, boyfriend Jude and friend Claire.  Somehow Mara came out of the accident unharmed, is it a miracle or is there a reason why Mara wasn't killed ?
We soon read that Mara has moved schools and is slowly starting to remember what happened that fateful day but in doing so Mara also now has the ability and power to imagine people's death and by imagining the deaths, she can cause them. In learning this, we read as Mara starts to wonder if she in fact caused the deaths of her friends ? With the help of newfound friend and soon to be boyfriend Noah can Mara learn to control her gift and remember what really happened that fateful night ?
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer is told in two POVs - a Before the Incident and After the Incident and is definitely a book that everyone must read or at least have sitting near the top of their TBR piles.

Review: Charming Blue - Kristine Grayson

Review: Charming Blue - Book #8 Fates Series - Kristine Grayson - September 2012
Have you ever heard the tale of BlueBeard the pirate ? The one where he cut off the heads of everyone he loved and put them on display for the next loved one to see before her very death which would follow shortly after ?
Are you a fan of fairytale renditions and fractured tales at that ? As those who read my blog The Phantom Paragrapher would know that I am a rendition lover, I don't mind the originals but for me the renditions are way better - well most of the time they are anyway.
Just recently, I discovered a new author and have decided to make my way through all her books and the first one was Charming Blue . In Charming Blue we meet Jodie , she is a Magic Agent in the "Greater World" which is Earth, she works as a fixer on behalf of all those who come from the Kingdoms- which is the magic world.  It seems that there is a stalker on the loose , threatning to kill women and the stalker is using the age-old tale of Bluebeard the pirate.  Jodie has been approached by Tank - Tinkerbell's cousin to help clear Blue aka Bluebeard's name as she knows he's not really the Fairy Tale Stalker. Can Jodie help clear Blue's name and find out what is happening ? What will happen when she discovers that what is really going on is an age old centuries long curse ? Can she use her power and with the help of magical friends crack the curse ? In doing this will she be able to provide Blue with a real "Happily -Ever-After" in the Greater World or is the saying true when it says that "only in books are there happily ever afters".
Find out in Charming Blue - Book #8 of the Fates series and trust me once you have read this book, you will be hooked on Kristine Grayson's writings and like me - you will make it one of your life missions to complete her booklist :)


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