Tag Archives: Cinder

#PTALive Melbourne, with Penguin Teen Australia

On Monday 12th August 2013, Penguin Teen Australia hosted #PTALive at their Melbourne headquarters. Among other things, it was to launch their new website. (NOTE: Feedly, my current blog reader, isn’t recognising this URL – or any variations of it. So if anyone finds a compatible RSS feed that will work with Feedly, please let me know.)

Got to be honest, I felt rather odd at the event, because…I’m not really a fangirl. Nothing to do with my age (mid-twenties), and everything to do with my personality. And a lot of the books that were highlighted, I just have no interest in. And for the others, I’m interested in Veronica Roth‘s and Marie Lu‘s series, but I haven’t read them yet. And I’ve only read Richelle Mead‘s first two Vampire Academy novels.

Marissa Meyer‘s Scarlet was featured out of two “underrated” titles. Unfortunately, it hasn’t been selling as well as some of the publisher’s other titles. Which is a real shame, because I rather like the Lunar Chronicles series. Admittedly, I read library copies of Cinder and Scarlet, so I haven’t put my money where my mouth is.

There was a shout-out to bloggers in general, and my site was one of twelve to be visually specified. Yeah, that surprised me, too. And seeing my name among the others really made me stand out, not necessarily in a good way, because I don’t have branding or a specially made banner. My entire blog is much like that.

I’ve been book blogging since 2007. Let that sink in. It’s currently 2013. And I’m rather unprogressive πŸ˜‰

But I digress…

Guest authors interviewed were Will Kostakis (author of The First Third) and Jennifer Kloester (author of The Cinderella Moment). Not entirely sure why, but Jen reminded me of American author Jackie Morse Kessler (also known as simply Jackie Kessler). Maybe because of their initials, and they both write YA fiction and practice martial arts. Also, they’re contracted to the same US publisher (Month9Books)… πŸ˜‰

Anyhoo, it was reported that Melbourne’s #PTALive had the most attenders, beating the other events around the country. Batmanians, unite! πŸ™‚ Also, surprising to learn that Vampire Academy’s biggest market is Australia. Would’ve just assumed the US was. But Australia has a lot of scary fangirl to give, apparently πŸ˜‰

Penguin Teen Australia: Facebook Twitter YouTube Tumblr

Will Kostakis: Facebook Twitter The First Third

Jennifer Kloester: Facebook Twitter Blogspot The Cinderella Moment

PENGUIN BOOKS I’M LOOKING FORWARD TO (YA & ADULT)

CONFIRMED RELEASE DATES
Marie Lu – Champion (Legend, Book 3) – 6th November 2013
Richelle Mead – The Fiery Heart (Bloodlines, Book 4) – 19th November 2013
Rachel Caine – Daylighters (Morganville Vampires, Book 15) – 20th November 2013

UNKNOWN RELEASE DATES
Nancy Holzner – Hellhound (Deadtown, Book 5) – 29th October 2013 (in the US)
Marissa Meyer – Cress (Lunar Chronicles, Book 3) – 4th February 2014 (in the US)
Jessica Spotswood – Untitled (Cahill Witch Chronicles, Book 3)
Sylvia Day – Captivated by You (Crossfire, Book 4)
Heather Brewer – Soulbroken (Legacy of Tril, Book 2)
Richelle Mead – Untitled (Age of X, Book 2)

PENGUIN USA PUBLISHED IT, BUT AUS MAY NOT
A. D. Robertson – Captive – 22nd October 2013
Lauren Dane & Megan Hart – There All Along – 3rd December 2013
Andrea Cremer – Snakeroot – 10th December 2013
Lydia Kang – Control – 26th December 2013
Rachel Caine – Prince of Shadows – 4th February 2014
J. Nelle Patrick – Tsarina – 27th February 2014
Seanan McGuire – Half Off Ragnarok – 4th March 2014
Andrea Cremer – The Inventor’s Secret – 22nd April 2014
Seanan McGuire – Sparrow Hill Road – 3rd June 2014

Top 10 Most Popular Reviews of 2012 (according to my WordPress stats)

The most popular posts on my blog are cover reveals first and foremost. Then deal announcements. But what about reviews? WordPress’ stats show the most popular (ie. most views) posts in the past year (16th January 2012 until today). I made note of the Top 10 (correct as of circa 5PM Tuesday, ie yesterday):

Equal 9th with 55 Views: Tiffany Reisz’s The Siren. So close to giving this five stars. Marked it down because I don’t like when authors make their characters authors, too. And Nora doesn’t seem to have an agent πŸ˜‰

Equal 9th with 55 Views: Marissa Meyer’s Cinder. Another close to five stars. Marked it down because it tries too hard to stick to the fairytale, with the prince and the ball. When it’s original with the cyborg and plague, it’s more awesome.

8th with 58 Views: Tiffany Reisz’s Seven-Day Loan. It’s since been retitled The Gift. Normally I don’t bother reviewing short stories, but Tiffany Reisz makes me want to tell the world. I have her second and third novels on shelf to be read. Now I wait for more short stories to be made free.

7th with 64 Views: Gabrielle Carey & Kathy Lette’s Puberty Blues. I just love this. It doesn’t pull any punches. It’s short, to the point, and doesn’t glamourise or romanticise teen relationships. It’s brutally honest, with a voice that can’t be matched. And it’s funny.

6th with 68 Views: John Ajvide Lindqvist’s Little Star. The author’s previous novel, Harbour, just didn’t work for me, and it’d been a few years since his glorious first two novels. But Little Star is a real return to form, and could be a morbid hit with teenage girls. I really enjoyed this, and the short story collection, Let the Old Dreams Die, that follows. Gotta love Lindqvist πŸ™‚

5th with 71 Views: Bleeding Ink Anthology. I have no idea why this rated so popular, considering it’s a self-published short story anthology edited by members of Kelley Armstrong’s forums. There are a few standouts, but overall I don’t think much of it.

4th with 98 Views: Fanny Merkin’s Fifty Shames of Earl Grey. The only book in the Top 10 that I gave five stars. I’ve never read, and don’t plan to read, E. L. James’ Fifty Shades of Grey, but I love this. I normally believe there’s a special hell for parody books, but Fanny Merkin’s is a special case. If you’re going to read a parody, you may as well read the best.

3rd with 126 Views: Sylvia Day’s Reflected in You. This trilogy annoys the shit out of me on so many levels, yet I’ve read the first two books in full. I share spoilers, and that’s probably what brings in the page views – you want someone to tell you what happens so you don’t have to read it for yourself πŸ˜‰

2nd with 863 Views: Sylvia Day’s Bared to You. Surprisingly, I actually gave this three stars, but that was back when actual conflict between a couple was something new and different. Until then, romance novels basically had no conflict at all between a couple – it was all external. This novel made me feel anger and frustration, and a bloody lot of both. It’s genuinely quite an achievement for a romance novel to make me feel something other than “meh”. I REALLY dislike these characters.

1st with 1884 Views: Sophie Morgan’s The Diary of a Submissive. I don’t read memoirs. Yet I saw this on NetGalley, and decided to give it a shot. Only worth three stars, yet the most popular with my blog visitors. Not my regular readers, mind you – I’m pretty sure most of the views came via Google searches. It’s a UK book, so probably didn’t get much US blog coverage. Mind you, I’m pretty sure a lot of my Crossfire review visitors came via Google searches, too, though those books got plenty of blog coverage all over the Internet. Huh.

what to conclude from the Top 10? They say more about my visitors than they do about me πŸ˜‰ 6 of the 10 heavily feature sex, so my visitors want me to review more erotica? (Though I certainly wouldn’t call Puberty Blues erotica.) I was expecting J. Kenner’s Release Me to be up there, but considering it was published only in the last month or so, it may not have had as much time to gather viewers. Plus, I cross-post all my reviews to Shelfari and Goodreads (and Amazon when they don’t ban them for using forbidden words), so chances are they’ve been read there instead of on my blog. That’s fine. I’m not one of those obnoxious self-promoters who say on Goodreads “full review at [insert blog link]”. I treat Goodreads users with more respect than that. Okay, I AM an obnoxious self-promoter, but not when it comes to reviews on Goodreads πŸ˜‰

[REVIEW] Cinder – Marissa Meyer

Marissa Meyer
Cinder (Lunar Chronicles, Book 1)
Penguin Puffin (AU: 29th December 2011; UK: 5th January 2012); Macmillan Feiwel & Friends (US: 3rd January 2012)
Buy (US) Buy (UK) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)

When looking for a pre-structured story to put one’s spin on, fairytales are the first stop. Cinderella is a working class girl with evil, demanding stepsisters and stepmother, who attends a prince’s ball.

However, Marissa Meyer hooks readers with her take of a cyborg in futuristic China. Cinder is the best mechanic in the Eastern Commonwealth, fixing her own body parts as well as portscreens…and Prince Kai’s beloved android.

But a plague is decimating the country – letumosis, often referred to as the blue death. Cinder learns how it spreads, and why she’s immune.

The stepmother, the elder stepsister, and the Lunar Queen are rather one-dimensional. More interesting, however, is Dr Dmitri Erland, in charge of creating a cure for the plague. But his secrets could change society as they know it.

I love all the science and technology: cyborgs, androids, letumosis, bioelectricity, all of it. Fingers crossed we learn about futuristic Africa next.

January 2012 Releases

Done with December 2011 Releases? Here are January 2012 Releases. To see future titles, check Reading Wishlist.

Continue reading

5 New Covers (DeStefano, Etienne, Lu, Meyer & Wiggins)

Continue reading