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Thursday, 27 March 2014

Winner announced: Divergent Premiere tickets

It's the news you've all been waiting for!

The winner of the pair of Divergent Premiere tickets is:

Helen Butt

Congratulations! 

Don't worry if you missed out. Get down to Leicester Square early on the weekend as the publishers we will also be giving out a limited number of premiere tickets to fans on both days!

On Saturday March 29th and Sunday March 30th Leicester Square will be transformed into the dystopian world of DIVERGENT, where fans will be invited to undergo initiation tests and, like Tris Prior, choose where they belong. Would you survive in Dauntless? Fans will be put through their paces with Dauntless training to see if you are brave enough to join their faction!

The Divergent Fan Experience Timings

Saturday March 29th
11.00am – 6.00pm

Sunday March 30th
11.00am – 12.00pm
3.00pm – 6.00pm

Premiere timings

Sunday March 30th
Doors open – 1.30pm
Doors close – 2.30pm
Film starts 3.00pm

DIVERGENT is released April 4th

FB handle: DivergentUK
Twitter: @Divergentmovie
#Divergent

Thanks to everyone who entered.

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

WIN: A pair of tickets to the Divergent Premiere

THE OPPORTUNITY OF A LIFETIME AWAITS...

Read on!

Attend the EUROPEAN PREMIERE!

On Saturday March 29th and Sunday March 30th Leicester Square will be transformed into the dystopian world of DIVERGENT, where fans will be invited to undergo initiation tests and, like Tris Prior, choose where they belong. Would you survive in Dauntless? Fans will be put through their paces with Dauntless training to see if you are brave enough to join their faction!

But that’s not all – I have a pairs of tickets for the European premiere of DIVERGENT at Odeon Leicester Square on the Sunday at 1.30pm, attended by stars of the film Shailene Woodley, Theo James and Kate Winslet! So not only can you discover the world for yourself, you can walk the red carpet, mingle with the stars and watch the film before it’s released in the UK!

Enter here for your chance to win this once in a lifetime experience! If you aren’t lucky this time, you are still in with a chance - get down to Leicester Square early as we will also be giving out a limited number of premiere tickets to fans on both days!

The Divergent Fan Experience Timings

Saturday March 29th
11.00am – 6.00pm

Sunday March 30th
11.00am – 12.00pm
3.00pm – 6.00pm

Premiere timings

Sunday March 30th
Doors open – 1.30pm
Doors close – 2.30pm
Film starts 3.00pm

DIVERGENT is released April 4th

FB handle: DivergentUK
Twitter: @Divergentmovie
#Divergent


To enter the competition, complete this form

All entries must be submitted by 6.00 pm Wednesday 26th March 2014

The winner will be announced here on Thursday 27th March.

Good luck!

Sunday, 23 March 2014

Review: Crash Into You

Author: Katie McGarry


Genre: Contemporary Teen Romance
Target audience: YA
Publisher: Mira Ink
Series: Pushing the Limits #3

Review:
Crash Into You is the third book Katie McGarry’s Pushing the Limits series. Again, you could read this as a standalone novel, the story follows the events of the second book but as with the previous titles this story is told from two more characters’ viewpoints. This time we get to know Isaiah and Rachel. Their love story is told in alternating chapters and is full of emotion and high-octane action.


Isaiah is still reeling over Beth’s rejection at the beginning of this book but he has other challenges too. He and Noah are struggling to pay the rent on their appalling apartment and Isaiah is still not old enough to be living independently. He’s determined not to return to foster care, especially as it would mean crashing with Beth’s aunt. He refuses to face that level of humiliation. But he has another problem too. His mum has returned and she wants to see him. But he’s not ready for that and maybe he never will be.


Rachel is a new to us character. She’s the single girl in a family full of big brothers. She’s the weak link or at least that’s how everyone sees her. She’s living lie, pretending to be something she’s not. Her whole family want her to fulfil the role of Colleen who died of leukaemia. Rachel wants to please everybody but her own secret is slowly eating her from inside out. She has violent panic attacks and no one knows. Her salvation is her car which she drives to escape. The night she rebels and finds herself drag racing changes everything for her and for Isaiah. There’s a price on Rachel’s head and somehow they have to pay it.


This was a super read. In some ways it is less steamy than the other books in the series. It’s intense but that’s more through the nature of drag racing and driving at speed than it is the romance. Isaiah shows a gentle, soft side and Rachel has an innocent nature.


I really enjoyed getting to know some of the other characters in this book: Abby and Logan. I liked the way friendship developed between Rachel and Abby. I’m hoping Abby will get a book of her own. Her back story has the potential to be so interesting.


Overall, this was another fantastic contemporary romance from Katie McGarry. It had an explosive plot and a sweet romance. And of course it had all the emotion you come to expect from this series. After all, it’s not easy facing up to our parents’ flaws but its all part of growing up.



Source: Bought and read on my Kobo

Other reviews of the series:

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Review: Eliza Boom: The Explosive Diary

Author: Emily Gale


Genre: Diary/ School story / Science-theme
Release date: August 2013
Publisher: Mom Books
Target audience: 5+ (read with an adult or newly independent readers)


Review:
Eliza Boom is a funny, inventive story which is ideal for newly independent readers. It’s a school story, it’s a spy story and it’s a tale of friendship.


Eliza Boom is an inventor. She’s up to her 92nd invention but not a single one has worked yet. Her dad – a gadget inventor for spies – promises that it is always the one hundredth invention that’s a success. So she keeps trying. But being an inventor is not enough for Eliza. She wants to be a spy too. She gets help from her loyal dog Einstein. When she inadvertently gives away one of her dad’s top secret inventions, she has to pull out all the explosive stops to get it back.


This book has a wonderfully chipper and upbeat tone. The characterisation is lively and Eliza shares her adventures through her diary writing. She’s an easy to like character. Her nemesis is easy to dislike. It also has the perfect chapter length and fast pace.


The nifty plotting and really well thought through gadgets make this story a rewarding read. As an adult reading this book, I was admiring the author’s clever tying together of the different inventions and events in the story.


I loved that this is a girl inventor. What a great book for inspiring girls into thinking about science and engineering! A perfect read for this week!


As well as being a story of one girl’s ambition to be an inventor, this is also a story of friendship. The author touches lightly upon bullying and how to recognise a good friend when you see one.


Eliza Boom: The Explosive Diary is full of booky goodness: A great story. A character with a booming, charming voice. A plot that fits tightly together jigsaw style. Amusing illustrations. And above all, it really leaves you feeling like it was a book worth reading. Highly recommended for newly independent readers and adults who are big kids at heart.


Source: Review copy sent by the publisher. Thank you.


Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Review: Dare You To

Author: Katie McGarry


Release date: 7th June 2013
Genre: Contemporary Teen Romance
Target audience: YA
Publisher: Mira Ink
Series: Pushing the Limits #2

Review:
Dare You To is the second book in Katie McGarry’s Pushing the Limits series. Although it does follow from the events of the first book, you can read it as a standalone. It’s more of a companion book than a sequel. This is another page-turner of a romance, told in alternating viewpoints.


This novel focuses on Beth and Ryan. Beth lives in Louisville in the roughest part of town. She’s been living in her auntie’s basement with her best friends Isaiah and Noah. But when she’s arrested for vandalising her mother’s boyfriend’s car, her estranged uncle takes her in and she moves to Groveton. Beth doesn’t want to leave her mum in Louisville to be the victim of domestic violence but her uncle gives her no choice. Ryan is all about baseball and dares. When his friends dare him to get Beth’s phone number one night in Taco Bell, he can’t resist the bet. He has to win. But Beth is not the sort of girl that is wowed by a jock. Ryan is left with egg on his face and a bet lost. So of course, when Beth arrives in his part of the neighbourhood, he’s determined to come out on top.


This is a story of trust and false impressions. Beth is prejudiced about the type of boys that play baseball and the type of girls that fall for them. Ryan has no real understanding of the challenges Beth has experienced growing up and why she keeps people at arm’s length. But Ryan’s not perfect and Beth needs love and affection. The plot follows the conflict between them and the way they use each other to get what they want.


This is a really enjoyable and entertaining read. Both characters leap off the page and I couldn’t help but like them and want them to be together. The only thing that irked me was some of Ryan’s phrasing. Sometimes he said that “Beth’s mine” rather than “my girl” and it was a little bit uncomfortable for me. I think the author could have toned that down because I don’t believe she meant him to appear possessive or controlling. He certainly isn’t like this at the end. He wants what’s best for Beth whether it is to be with him or not.


I think this is in part a book about realising your parents are flawed. Sometimes it is blindingly obvious like with Beth. And sometimes it is a little more subtle like with Ryan. But in the end, we all grow up and the best of us make our own choices and then stand by them.


Dare You To was a really satisfying read. It was romantic. It was sad in parts. But it was the sort of book you get swept up in and can’t wait to pick up. Highly recommended.



Source: Bought and read on my Kobo

Monday, 3 March 2014

Review: Life After Life

Author: Kate Atkinson

Release date: Paperback 30th Jan 2014
Genre: Historical / Literary
Target audience: Adult
Publisher: Black Swan

Review:

Life After Life is a story of a life lived over and over. It’s about death, life, war and the choices we make.


This is a complicated story. The main character is Ursula – a peculiar but intelligent girl. It’s really quite difficult to explain the plot. Ursula is born again and again in this book. She perhaps has a destiny to fulfil and each time she dies, she comes back the same but a little changed. She doesn’t really remember the lives that went before but she has inexplicable fears resulting from her many deaths. Each time she is born again, she finds a way to avoid that death but sooner or later comes yet again a cropper.


Born in 1910 over the course of the book, she’ll see the Great War, the Second World War. She’ll fall in love, or at least have lovers, she’ll experience motherhood and many losses.
I really found this book difficult to get into. In the first part Ursula dies so many times and in such quick succession that you don’t really get to know the characters. You meet her mother Sylvie, her sister Pamela, Bridget the maid, the doctor, her father Hugh. The list goes on and then, of course, it’s back to the drawing board, she dies, she’s born again. It was the sort of book that you never felt like picking up. But because I was reading it for the staff book group, I had to persist.


The middle part of the book was the most interesting but it was also rather grim. Ursula experiences domestic violence, rape, rejection, war. Talk about depressing. The final part of the book – well, I just didn’t get it. The whole thing was just completely unsatisfying. Ursula appeared to have a purpose throughout all her lives. I think she achieved it but I still don’t quite know. The ambiguity is not a good thing for such a complicated book.


The wartime setting was vividly described and this was what made the middle part interesting. The author was particularly good at bringing to life the many ways that people died in the war. She held nothing back. Now I think about it. I think this book is rather brutal but perhaps that it is only right for a book exploring the horror of war and persecution. The other enjoyable aspect of the book was Ursula’s family and their foibles.


Overall, I think Life After Life required rather a lot from the reader. It required patience, considerable concentration and perseverance. For me, there just wasn’t enough reward in the story for the effort that had to go into the reading. This book is definitely for people who enjoy detail and non-linear storylines. So in essence – not me!



Source: Borrowed from the public library