Friday, 8 January 2016

Review: The Dragon Of The Month Club by Iain Reading + GIVEAWAY

Title: The Dragon Of The Month Club: Volume 1 by Iain Reading
Publication: 18th December 2014 by CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform 
Genre: Middle Grade, Fantasy, Adventure
Pages: 236 Pages
Format: Paperback
Source: Received for free in exchange for an honest review
Rating: 4/5 Stars

Synopsis:
The Dragon Of The Month Club is the exciting first installment in a new book series that tells the story of Ayana Fall and Tyler Travers, two best friends who stumble across an extraordinarily magical book and soon find themselves enrolled as members of a very special and exclusive club - The Dragon of the Month Club. On the thirteenth of every month a new dragon conjuring spell is revealed and the two friends attempt to summon the latest Dragon of the Month. The varieties are almost endless: Air Dragons, Paper Dragons, Fog Dragons, Waterfall Dragons, Rock Dragons, Tree Dragons - not to mention special bonus dragons for all the major holidays, including a particularly prickly Holly Dragon for Christmas. But one day when a conjuring spell somehow goes wrong Ayana and Tyler find themselves unexpectedly drawn into a fantastical world of adventure based on the various books scattered all across Tyler's messy bedroom. Travelling from one book-inspired world to the next with nothing to rely on but their wits and a cast of strange and exotic dragons at their disposal they must try to somehow find their way home again. Drawing inspiration from some of literature's most memorable stories - from 19th century German folktales to the streets of Sherlock Holmes's London - the adventures of Ayana and Tyler bring these classic stories to life in delightfully strange and unexpected ways. Filled with fascinating detail and non-stop action these books will spark the imaginations of readers of all ages to inspire a life-long love of reading and seeking out books that are just a little bit off the beaten track.

Review:

This is forever going to be a book that I will remember and a book I shall keep close to my heart as it is a book that marks a big step in my blogs history, this book is the first book I ever received for review from a publisher! To be honest I never thought something like that would happen to my blog because obviously I see on other peoples blogs they get books to review but I never thought my blog would ever be noticed enough for it to happen to me and to be honest I didn't really care...I started blogging for my love of books, not my love of free books....ok on to what I thought of the book...

This book was described as a 'Middle Grade' novel which I looked up to mean suits between the ages of about 8-12 year olds, so I wasn't to certain on how I was going to find this book and if I might find it a bit to childish for my liking....but to my surprise that was not the case I found this book to be a very quick and exciting read and its one of those books that there is no real age restrictions for, you could be 8 or 88 and still find this book had you gripped from start to finish and laughing at all the right moments.

I won't go into too much detail as I find the synopsis pretty much says all you need to know, but in this book two friends Ayana and Tyler join a magical club called the dragon of the month club where they receive instructions every month on how to conjure a new type of dragon...such as a fog dragon or a water dragon, but when there attempts to conjure a steam dragon go slightly askew they find themselves pulled into an entirely different world....the world consisting of all the books around Tyler's bedroom!

I found the way that this book used the main story to combine and mash together so many other types of worlds, characters and stories to be very creative and it mean't that you never got bored of reading as the setting and situation was constantly changing, I found this element of the book kept me interested the whole way through the book.

At first I thought I wouldn't enjoy a book about dragons very much, but I should have learned from my mistake when I said that I would probably never like Harry Potter because the concept of magic and wizards didn't seem cool to me....but now I am like the biggest Harry Potter fan around! Lets just say reading this book made me really want to have a pet dragon of my own...you never know I might join the dragon of the month club and try to conjure my own dragon.

One thing I found slightly annoying about this book was the ending...you spend the whole book wondering and waiting in suspense to see if they will escape the book world and then the book ends very abruptly leaving you on a major cliffhanger...and I know that this book is the first in a series but I hate when books end really really suddenly like that...I guess you could take that as a positive as you know I really enjoyed a book if I didn't want it to end!

Overall I found this book to be a very enjoyable and fast-paced read and I can't wait for the next book to see what happens..as you know how much I hate cliffhangers! I would recommend this book to readers of all ages as I believe it's a book everyone would enjoy.

Rating:
The People that sent me this book to review have kindly agreed to send a book to the winner if I hosted a giveaway so here you are guys my first giveaway, make sure to read my giveaway policy before entering...this giveaway is International.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, 1 January 2016

The Christmas Tag

*Forgot to post so am going to post it today because why not! HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!

cindysuen  artists on tumblr christmas red green

If everything goes as planned this blog post will be uploaded on Christmas Day, so Merry Christmas! I hope you have a great day with family and friends and I hope Santa was good to you!
I know this tag is not book related but it is Christmas Day so a Christmas Tag is compulsory...of course I was not tagged by anyone to do this but I typed in Christmas Tag and decided to do the first one that came up so before I go on with the tag this tag was created by a blog called Make Up Savvy and you can find their original tag post here

THE CHRISTMAS TAG:

1. What is your favourite Christmas Movie/s?
I LOVE Christmas movies but if I had to choose one it would be Miracle on 34th Street the 1994 version. I love this movie I would say my twin brother and I have watched this movie at least 100 times by now...but because I always have to cheat on these things Elf has to get a mention too, because who doesn't love Elf?

Miracle on 34th Street (1994) Poster

2. Do you open your presents on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning?
I know a lot of people have a tradition of opening one gift on Christmas Eve but in our house we have to wait till Christmas Morning to open our presents, this is just the way we have always done it so I don't really feel like I am missing out on any tradition by not opening a present on Christmas Eve. Although we do have a tradition of getting a new set of fuzzy warm Christmas pajamas to wear for Christmas Eve/Morning!

3. Do you have a favourite Christmas memory?
I think my favourite Christmas memory is when I was about 6 years old and we got a letter from 'Santa' inviting us to see him where he lives in Lapland, so we went to Lapland for 3 days and you had to spend the first two days on a tour thing searching for Santa and then when you found him he had our wishlists in his hand and gave us something off our list and he knew are likes/dislikes,etc. While there we met reindeer, husky, elves and we drank gallons of hot chocolate. As you can tell at 6 years old this was a very magical experience for me and one I will never forget.

4. Favourite festive food?
So hard to choose, I love the turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, carrots and gravy of Christmas dinner ( I'll pass on the Brussels sprouts). I love the tins of chocolate Quality Streets, Roses, Celebrations and Heros. I love stuffing my face with the overpriced chocolate you receive in selection boxes, I love all the festive food my mum makes, I love the big Irish fry-up we have on Christmas morning and I love the Christmas Pudding that my granny makes every year to enjoy for the next Christmas. This year I am trying to be healthy though so no chocolate for me! Overall I would say Christmas Pudding as it's something we only have at Christmas.

5. Favourite Christmas gift?
The best Christmas gift I have ever received....maybe my iPod touch 4th generation I received it the Christmas of 2012 and have used it everyday since so it has definitely been one of my most used presents of all time anyway!
6. Favourite Christmas scent?
I think the number one scent I associate with Christmas is the smell of the Christmas tree. In our house we have never had a fake tree always a real tree, and although the pine needles usually went everywhere the smell of the Christmas tree filled the house...I love that scent.

7. Do you have any Christmas Eve traditions?
When we were smaller we used to have a tradition that everyone slept in Mum and Dad's bed Christmas Eve...I think I started this tradition as I was kind of scared of the idea of Santa landing on the roof or something, I just felt safer in my mum's bed...thinking back on it now that must have been a real pain as I probably woke up every 10 minutes as I was just too excited to go asleep....they must have gotten no sleep...I am so sorry Mom.

8. What tops your tree?
At the top of our Christmas tree we have a plain white angel, as far as I can remember we never had a star or anything just always the angel, but may Dad always had to put it on top of the tree as I was not tall enough.

9. As a kid what was the one (crazy, wild, extravagant) gift you always asked for but never received?
Every year without fail I would ask for a puppy, I remember some years all I would ask for would be puppy, puppy, puppy,puppy,puppy....and I never received a puppy from Santa. Although after many years of persuading my parents we got a dog ( although not for Christmas) 5 years ago , his name is Brandy and he is a golden retriever!
10. What's the best part about Christmas for you?
There is no one part of Christmas that is my favourite, obviously Christmas Morning is great but as a kid and still now as a teen I love the whole atmosphere of Christmas....the count down to Christmas and opening  your advent calender every morning to a small square of chocolate, staying up late to watch the late late toy show and eat your weight in sweets and coke floats (Only the Irish people will understand this one), the excitement of writing your Christmas list and sending it up the chimney for the elves and setting out the plate of cookies, milk and a carrot for Rudolph before heading off to bed on Christmas Eve. Not being able to get a wink of sleep all night and waking the parents up at 6 in the morning to see if Santa came...opening presents, Christmas breakfast...dinner..the days that follow, there is too many things I love about Christmas I could rant on and on forever.

That's all from me for now for the Christmas Tag, Christmas is my favourite time of year and I hope you our all having a great Christmas...and just in case you have not heard it enough already...MERRY CHRISTMAS!!
1. What is your favourite Christmas Movie/s?
Ah, there's SO many, I love National Lampoons Christmas Vacation, Home Alone, Elf, The Santa Clause etc. but one that I watch every year, without fail is The Snowman on Christmas eve. I absolutely adored the Snowman and The Snow dog. My dad bought me the little plushie last year, so cute.

2. Do you open your presents on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning?
Always on Christmas morning (usually whilst scoffing Christmas chocolate) We usually get new Christmas Pyjamas on Christmas Eve, but we save the present opening for Christmas day morning.
3. Do you have a favourite Christmas memory?
My parents always used to go all out at Christmas. We'd come downstairs to presents, balloons, reindeer prints made out of glitter, red and white tape for the north pole, it was so magical as kids! 
4. favourite festive food?
Aside from chocolate...Roast potatoes during Christmas dinner, so many roast potatoes.

5. Favourite Christmas gift ?
I can't remember how old I was, but it was the year of the Furby. I'm sure there were small riots amongst the shelves in Toys R us. My parents pretended they couldn't get me one but then it was hidden behind the sofa! (anyone else hide theirs in the wardrobe at night, they were so creepy!)

6. Favourite Christmas scent?
Christmas dinner cooking, mmm or the smell of the Christmas tree! 
7. Do you have any Christmas Eve traditions?
Just that it's family time, we'll usually all have wine, the fire on, lots of yummy food and sit down in our new pyjamas to watch Christmas films.

8. What tops your tree?
For years and years it was a little gold vintage angel, my dad always lifted me up to put it on the tree, when I was a kid... at the very end of decorating everything. She was always kind of wonky and worn looking, but it was tradition. These days it's a big gold glittery star.

9. As a kid what was the one (crazy, wild, extravagant) gift you always asked for but never received?
Not in an ungrateful way. I mean, I used to circle half of the Argos catalogue!But every year I would ask for a dog, without fail. One year my parents brought it a huge box, with holes in and something was moving. I was certain it was a puppy...it was a rabbit ha ha Still one of the best pets I've ever had though. Then last year, I finally bought myself my own Christmas puppy :) Oscar on the 21sr of December. He was certainly worth the wait.

10. What's the best part about Christmas for you?
Spending time with my loves ones, friends and family, after eating Christmas dinner, watching Only fools and Horses episodes that we've seen ten times already. Watching the snow fall and generally having a lovely time. 
- See more at: http://milkbubbletea.blogspot.co.uk/#sthash.eOak9PKB.dpuf

1. What is your favourite Christmas Movie/s?
Ah, there's SO many, I love National Lampoons Christmas Vacation, Home Alone, Elf, The Santa Clause etc. but one that I watch every year, without fail is The Snowman on Christmas eve. I absolutely adored the Snowman and The Snow dog. My dad bought me the little plushie last year, so cute.

2. Do you open your presents on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning?
Always on Christmas morning (usually whilst scoffing Christmas chocolate) We usually get new Christmas Pyjamas on Christmas Eve, but we save the present opening for Christmas day morning.
3. Do you have a favourite Christmas memory?
My parents always used to go all out at Christmas. We'd come downstairs to presents, balloons, reindeer prints made out of glitter, red and white tape for the north pole, it was so magical as kids! 
4. favourite festive food?
Aside from chocolate...Roast potatoes during Christmas dinner, so many roast potatoes.

5. Favourite Christmas gift ?
I can't remember how old I was, but it was the year of the Furby. I'm sure there were small riots amongst the shelves in Toys R us. My parents pretended they couldn't get me one but then it was hidden behind the sofa! (anyone else hide theirs in the wardrobe at night, they were so creepy!)

6. Favourite Christmas scent?
Christmas dinner cooking, mmm or the smell of the Christmas tree! 
7. Do you have any Christmas Eve traditions?
Just that it's family time, we'll usually all have wine, the fire on, lots of yummy food and sit down in our new pyjamas to watch Christmas films.

8. What tops your tree?
For years and years it was a little gold vintage angel, my dad always lifted me up to put it on the tree, when I was a kid... at the very end of decorating everything. She was always kind of wonky and worn looking, but it was tradition. These days it's a big gold glittery star.

9. As a kid what was the one (crazy, wild, extravagant) gift you always asked for but never received?
Not in an ungrateful way. I mean, I used to circle half of the Argos catalogue!But every year I would ask for a dog, without fail. One year my parents brought it a huge box, with holes in and something was moving. I was certain it was a puppy...it was a rabbit ha ha Still one of the best pets I've ever had though. Then last year, I finally bought myself my own Christmas puppy :) Oscar on the 21sr of December. He was certainly worth the wait.

10. What's the best part about Christmas for you?
Spending time with my loves ones, friends and family, after eating Christmas dinner, watching Only fools and Horses episodes that we've seen ten times already. Watching the snow fall and generally having a lovely time. 
- See more at: http://milkbubbletea.blogspot.co.uk/#sthash.eOak9PKB.dpu

Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Christmas Book Haul!!

Merry Christmas everyone! I hope you all had a great Christmas and got all the books you may have asked for. Today I am going to be doing my first proper book haul but since I am still in hospital I do not have proper pictures of the books I got so you will just have to bare with me on that one...ok on with the book haul.

The following books I got for Christmas off Santa:

Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass, #1)Crown of Midnight (Throne of Glass, #2)Heir of Fire (Throne of Glass, #3)Queen of Shadows (Throne of Glass, #4)

I also received these books from family members:


Ready Player OneThe Assassin's Blade (Throne of Glass, #0.1-0.5)

Those were all the books I received off of others this year..and to any normal person that would seem like a lot of books but me at about midnight on Christmas Day obviously didn't think so as I went on amazon and proceeded to buy myself...11 books (6 of them were kindle editions though!)...what the heck it's Christmas! why not buy more books!

The following books I bought for my kindle:

Anna and the French Kiss (Anna and the French Kiss, #1)Lola and the Boy Next Door (Anna and the French Kiss, #2)Isla and the Happily Ever After (Anna and the French Kiss, #3)To All the Boys I've Loved Before (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #1)P.S. I Still Love You (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #2)Carry On

(you can tell I pick the books that I want to read that have the girliest covers to go on my kindle so I don't have to have such girly covers on my bookshelf...)

These books I bought in physical form for myself on Amazon:

Username: EvieGirl Online On Tour (Girl Online, #2)Illuminae (The Illuminae Files, #1)The Infinite Sea (The 5th Wave, #2)A Court of Thorns and Roses (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #1)

Now that I have it all typed out my book buying problem seems scary to me...17 books..that's a lot of books. To be fair the way I work when it comes to buying books is instead of buying 2 or 3 books every month for the entire year, I stockpile on books when it comes to my birthday and Christmas so I just get loads of books at those two times of the year and it does me till my next birthday or Christmas.

what did you get for Christmas? Did you get any books? if so comment below what books YOU got. That's all for now- Sarah

Friday, 25 December 2015

MERRY CHRISTMAS + Healthy Recipe: Microwave Baked Apples

Image result for merry christmas images

Merry Christmas everyone! It's Christmas Day (just in case you didn't know), this post has obviously been written in advance because right now I am probably enjoying the full festivities of Christmas Day, today's post isn't book related, but trust me you will forgive me once you try this recipe out for yourself! I decided I would upload this recipe on my blog as I believe it is quite a festive recipe for Christmas!

DISCLAIMER: This recipe is the easiest recipe known to man as I am the worst cook/baker in the universe, so if I can do this so can you!

Now time to learn how to make this apple pie, cinnamon, festive bowl of goodness...in under 5 minutes.

Healthy Microwaved Baked Apples:


What you will need: Serves 1

- 1 Apple ( I used Granny Smith)
- 1 tsp of ground cinnamon (or to taste)
- 1 tbsp of water
Optional: you can also add 1-2 tsp of sugar but I have decided to keep mine as healthy as possible :)

Method:

1. Peel, core and slice the apple into thin slices like you are going to make an apple pie.
2. Place in a microwave safe bowl and add the cinnamon and water.
3. Microwave for 1-2 minutes or until the apple is soft (or to your preference)
* I did this on two separate occasions and microwaved them for two separate times, both turned out delicious!
4. Add an extra dash of cinnamon is desired and enjoy quick while its still hot!

Note: You can literally customize this however you want, tell me what you added to yours down below!

And it's as simple as that..told you it was easy and delicious!
Comment down below if you try this out I would love to here how yours turned out and if you added anything!

Merry Christmas...hope you enjoy this festive treat over the holidays!

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Top Ten Tuesday: Top 10 Books I Wouldn't Mind Santa Leaving Under My Tree This Year



Who is excited for Christmas! I know I am!
I love Christmas it is my favourite holiday of the year, I love the spirit of Christmas everyone is so happy, putting up the Christmas tree, warm fires in the evening times...Christmas pajamas!!! I can't wait, only a few more days to go now....

Today I am doing another Top Ten Tuesday, as most of you know this is a meme that was created by the people over at The Broke and the Bookish and you can check out their blog here for more information about upcoming Top Ten Tuesdays! 

And without further adieu....

Top 10 Books I Wouldn't Mind Santa Leaving Under My Tree This Year

1. Throne of Glass Series by Sarah.J.Maas - (Already cheating on number 1) I know this isn't a book because it is a series, but this series is top priority this Christmas as everyone has been telling me its a must read!
Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass, #1)Crown of Midnight (Throne of Glass, #2)Heir of Fire (Throne of Glass, #3)Queen of Shadows (Throne of Glass, #4)

2. The Assassin's Blade by Sarah.J.Maas- this one is pretty self-explanatory considering what number one was this was kind of a must from what I hear.
The Assassin's Blade (Throne of Glass, #0.1-0.5)

3. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline- because this has literally been on my wishlist since last year and still have not bought it yet.
Ready Player One

4. Winger (Winger #1) by Andrew Smith- because I seem to see this book in the background of lots of Youtube videos and have heard some pretty good reviews about it.
Winger (Winger, #1)

5. Carry On by Rainbow Rowell- because I think everyone who enjoyed 'Fangirl' by Rainbow Rowell will agree that this book is a must read...I want to know more about Simon and Baz...
Carry On

6. Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff- because everyone is raving about this book at the minute and it looks AWESOME!!
Illuminae (The Illuminae Files, #1)

7. To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han- don't really have a reason sometimes if I see a book come up in multiple haul videos it makes me want to get it even before I read the blurb...opps..
To All the Boys I've Loved Before (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #1)

8. Anna and the French Kiss Series by Stephanie Perkins- because this is another one that has been on my wishlist for forever...
Anna and the French Kiss (Anna and the French Kiss, #1)Lola and the Boy Next Door (Anna and the French Kiss, #2)Isla and the Happily Ever After (Anna and the French Kiss, #3)

9. Rebel Belle (Rebel Belle #1) by Rachel Hawkins- it has many good reviews, that's all I really know about it.
Rebel Belle (Rebel Belle, #1)

10. (Another cheat as it's not one book)  Various Youtuber Books:
- Girl Online: On Tour by Zoe Sugg
- Hello Life! by Marcus Butler
- Username: Evie by Joe Sugg
- Binge by Tyler Oakley
Girl Online On Tour (Girl Online, #2)Hello Life!Username: EvieBinge
because I love Youtube and love youtubers!!!

So there you go those are the top 10 ( or slightly more than 10) books on my Christmas wishlist this year....I hope Santa thought I was good this year...
But on a serious note remember Christmas is not all about the presents but also of being with family and enjoying each others company. I hope you all have a great Christmas and maybe receive a book or two! Merry Christmas!

Friday, 18 December 2015

Review: Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens AgendaTitle: Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
Publication: April 7th 2015 by Penguin
Genre: Young adult fiction, Contemporary
Pages: 303
Format: Paperback
Source: Purchased
Rating: 5/5 Stars

Synopsis:
Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised. With some messy dynamics emerging in his once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon’s junior year has suddenly gotten all kinds of complicated. Now, change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met.


Review:
 This is yet another book that has been sitting on my shelf since the summer and have finally pulled it out of my TBR jar, this was a quick read for me and I really enjoyed it.
*DISCLAIMER* Don't read this book when you are hungry or are a recovering Oreo addict, you will suffer terribly....

I loved this book from start to finish. Where to start...I loved the overall plot of this story, Simon has been emailing another boy from his school anonymously, Martin one of Simon's classmates finds out that Simon is gay and has been emailing this other boy and he uses this to blackmail Simon. Throughout the book we see Simon dealing with this and trying to keep his sexual identity hidden from other students while trying to figure out the identity of  'Blue' the guy he has been emailing. I just found the whole idea of this story to be very good at it kept my attention the whole way throughout the book.

I love the idea of the hidden identity of Blue.To be honest I could not guess that Blue was who it turned out to be, I was totally surprised which I really like because I hate when an ending is easily revealed from the start of the book because then there is no excitement or curiosity.

I liked the various friendships in this book between Simon and his other friends. The chapters in this book are split between real life and emails between Simon and Blue so I found you were never getting bored of either one and always craving the next email segment, I think this is one of the reasons I flew through this book!

I have not read too may books that deal with the LGBT community but I think books like this being there for teens to read is very good as in this generation it is something we hear a lot of and have come to accept the LGBT community more and more.

I really recommend this book for everyone as I think it is a book everyone would enjoy as it was realistic but funny read that contained a lot of Oreo references... that's all for now bye :)

Rating:

















































































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