Month: September 2015

Book Review: Only Ever Yours by Louise O’neill

This book is like a massive middle finger to gender inequality and the objectification of women in contemporary society. It is extremely harrowing and it literally gave me nightmares, but I think it’s so important for young women to read it. What it’s about: I think the author herself best described this book as a cross between The Handmaid’s Tale and Mean Girls. Set in a truly horrific dystopian society, where females are raised in ‘schools’ designed to prepare girls to be basically subservient wives or concubines (or the most horrible of all – Chastities – which are basically the teachers of the next generation). being pretty is of the utmost importance and slogans like ‘fat girls must be made obsolete’ following them everywhere. What I thought: This book is incredibly difficult to read, but I believe it’s incredibly important that people do read this book. It is extremely reminiscent of The Handmaid’s Tale, but I feel it’s a bit more relevant to modern society and the pressures young girls are put under today. I …

Recom-Monday-Tions – The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

I have spent the previous three days writing my introduction for my PhD thesis on cancer immunotherapy, and it has inspired me to recommend this book. It also is probably worth mentioning that due to the fact that I am currently writing my PhD thesis, that I will be on semi-hiatus for the next few months. I will still try to post my regular features, including my Recom-Monday-Tions and my Friday Photographer Feature, but I may be too distracted at times to remember to post, or organise photographers to feature. I also expect my reading (well reading that is not scientific journal articles) to reduce dramatically, so there will also be fewer revies. Sorry about this, but it is unavoidable. Now, back to the matter at hand. “My thoughts are stars I cannot fathom into constellations.” The Fault in Our Stars by John Green is a contemporary romance about two teen cancer sufferers. It is a beautiful story about living with a terminal disease and trying to live your life in spite of it. It is …

Friday Photographer Feature – Books with Bazzi

Hello everyone! Happy Friday. Boy have I had a day (had a massive experiment to do and i’m exhausted). So I am definitely in need of some lovely photography. Today’s photographer is the wonderful Books with Bazzi. Questions! Name: Zaynab Ali Bazzi Location: Denmark Favourite book: You really want me to pick only one? In this case I read The Queen of the Tearling this year and I LOVED it. Favourite classic: Is The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho considered a classic? If so, this will be it. Favorite book to photograph: Hardbacks are great books to photograph – they stand up easily, you can take the dusk jacket off and position them both differently. I really love the Throne of Glass books Hogwarts House: Let’s Huffle the Puff!! Random Question – Which fictional societies/worlds do you most and least want to live in? Worlds I would most want to live in: The Harry Potter world! Percy Jackson The Shadowhunter world. World I would least want to live in: The Divergent world – wasn’t that big …

Recom-Monday-tions – The Giver by Lois Lowry

“The worst part of holding the memories is not the pain. It’s the loneliness of it. Memories need to be shared.” The Giver is a dystopian novel set in a world where every aspect of every persons life is carefully controlled in order to maintain the peace in the society. Everyone in the society is stripped of their emotions (and anything that could incite and emotional response) and given a family unit and a nice peaceful job. Their lives are peaceful… but utterly dull. Jonas, our protagonist is chosen to become The Receiver, meaning that he will inherit all of the human race’s collective memories from The Giver. His life becomes a lot more complex as he begins to experience the entire range of human emotions. For a book set in a society that is so devoid of colour and feeling, this is absolutely a book that is all about the feels. I think what I like best about it is it’s subtlety. It never hits you over the head with its philosophy. It presents you …

Friday Photographer Feature – Books with Dylan

Oh my goodness what a week! I think some awesome book photography is in order. Today I have Dylan from Books with Dylan with me to share his gorgeous photos (and they are SO gorgeous!). Question Time! Name: Dylan Location: Sydney, Australia Favourite book: The Child Thief by Brom Favourite classic: Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë Favourite book to photograph: My Penguin clothbound edition of the Odyssey, and also any vintage children’s classic book. Hogwarts house: Still waiting for my Hogwarts letter. It should be here any day now. Then I can find out what house I’m in. Random question: You are planning an elaborate art heist. Which four book characters would you recruit to be on your team and what role would they play? Kell (from A Darker Shade of Magic): He would work with Cinder, to figure out a plan. He’s well practiced in smuggling things and a magician. That will probably be helpful. Peter Pan: In case we need to fly somewhere, think outside the box and use our imagination. Also he …

Book Review – The Library at Mount Char by Scott Hawkins

Oh my goodness! What a unique read. How am I ever going to review this little oddity? I shall try my hardest! What it’s about: Okay, so there is  library that holds all the secrets of the universe, run by a god. This god, known as Father has twelve apprentices (librarians), who each study a particular catalog (War, Death, Language, Medicine, etc.) and must master it. Their studies aren’t easy, and Father is, for lack of a better term, an absolute sadistic asshole. When he goes missing and the librarians  are locked out of the library, they must all try to solve the mystery of their missing god before his enemies decided to move in and take over. “For all intents and purposes, the power of the Library is infinite. Tonight we’re going to settle who inherits control of reality.” What I thought: Honestly, it’s pretty damn brilliant. It is extremely dark and absolutely one of the oddest books I’ve ever read, but it is just damn good. It kept me up past 2 am several nights this …

Recom-Monday-Tions – Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

So I have not even finished this series. I’ve only read the first two books, but this is such an awesome series that I feel confident enough to recommend it anyway. “It is a condition of monsters that they do not perceive themselves as such. The dragon, you know, hunkered in the village devouring maidens, heard the townsfolk cry ‘Monster!’ and looked behind him.” This is one of the most unique fantasy stories I’ve ever read. This is sort of an angel and demons story, but not really. It’s also quite dark (which I love!) so that’s a bonus. Daughter of Smoke and Bone follows the story of Karou, a 17 year-old artist living in Prague with a rather unusual family. “She moved like a poem and smiled like a sphinx.” Karou had a rather unusal upbringing, as she was raised by Brimstone, a powerful Chimaera (creatures made up of people and animal bits) who makes wishes out of teeth. I don’t want to say much about this as I don’t want to give anything …

Welcome back to Scion – The Mime Order Book Tour with exclusive teaser for book 3 and a giveaway!

Oh my goodness! So many exciting things today! Where do I start? This is one of my absolute favourite series. I’ve raved about it both on here and a lot on tumblr. I love it. It is a mix between fantasy and dystopian and it has one of the most interesting magic systems I’ve ever encountered in a book before. The Bone Season follows the story of Paige in a futuristic (but kind of old-timey) London where being a Clairvoyant (or Voyant) is punishable by death. Paige is a Dreamwalker for an underground Voyant crime syndicate, and just by being alive she is breaking the law. And it’s really awesome. So Samantha Shannon, the fabulous author of the amazing The Bone Season series, bless her cotton socks, has written a little teaser for book three for me to share with you all. How I have been deemed worthy for this ultimate honour is beyond me. May I present to you a teaser for the third book in the series, written by Samantha Shannon, herself. TEASER: …

Friday Photographer Feature – Kat-from-MinasMorgul

Happy Friday! Today’s photographer, Katja from kat-from-minasmorgul, is someone I only found quite recently, but my goodness are her photos beautiful! So beautiful! Like crazy beautiful! Name: Katja Location: Leipzig, Germany Favourite book: Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas Favourite classic: A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens Hogwarts House: Slytherin If you could have any power from any fictional book/series what would it be and what’s the first thing you would do with your new powers? Aelin’s fire magic from Throne of Glass would be awesome since I love fire. and the first thing I would do might be setting something on fire by accident while trying to enlight a camp fire. Thank you, Kat, for agreeing to be featured here. You can find Katja on Tumblr, Instagram, and Goodreads All photos were taken by Kat and used with her permission.

Lit Lists – My Ultimate Zombie Apocalypse Survival Team

Hello! It’s time for another Lit Lists I think, and for today I decided to list my ultimate Book Character Zombie Apocalypse Survival Team. And then I think I’m going to tag some other victims to do this list with me. As a scientist, precisely an immunologist, I think I could be pretty handy in any zombie apocalypse, what with my experience in developing vaccines and stuff. I would be pretty valuable in a post-apocalyptic world. So who would I want around me to protect me and ensure I survive long enough to develop a human-race-saving vaccine against the undead? 1. Celaena Sardothien from Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas. Not only is she one of the most bad ass fighters that exists, I’m pretty sure she can also scent out food (particularly the sweet kind) like a bloodhound. I would feel pretty safe knowing Celaena had my back. 2. Katsa from Graceling by Kristin Cashore. With an unnatural ability for fighting, Katsa would be absolutely indespensible in a zombie apocalypse. This girl is the one …