Sunday, 19 October 2014

Guest Post : Edge of End by @surenfant

 I’m an author of fantasy, horror and paranormal stories. My last book – Edge of End – is a paranormal and horror novel about a man who wakes up in a desert his memories wiped from his head. He finds himself in the middle of an unknown.

I love writing in this genres and I love reading books from this genres. Fantasy is something beyond any barriers as there is no limit for human’s imagination. I love imagining things – real or unreal – and some of them I write down on a paper. Fantasy is a genre where you can create your own world with your rules and do to it anything you want. You’re God here.

Paranormal is my genre too. I’ve got two enjoyable short stories – Passion of an Angel and Wrath of Michael. Those are paranormal stories about the beginning of time and angels who are involved in creating and supporting life on Earth.

I start writing at age 16. Sometimes someone asks when did I realize I wanted to write? I can’t answer this question. Writing isn’t a profession, it comes itself, the words flow out themselves when you take a pen or sit down at a keyboard to type what is on your mind. That’s why there are good and bad writers.



As I said above, my last novel – Edge of End – is a paranormal and fantasy
story about a man – Jonathan – who starts his new life waking up in a desert his memories wiped from his head. He is alone having no clue who and what he is, where he has come from and where he should go. There is only one way – forward when he spots a little town in the distance.

This town seems abandoned like the one where the army does its experiments or the scientists test their new atomic weapons – empty streets, old houses.

Jonathan wanders the town in search of any sign of life. Soon he comes to the realization that he's moments from death as absolutely evil dwells in the town seeking fresh souls to suck up. The seemingly dead town is only outwardly empty.

The story is filled with mysteries, fights, unearthly creatures hounding our hero and his new companion – Elizabeth – a red-haired beautiful woman who doesn’t remember anything as Jonathan. Now these two have to work their way through the most hideous town that they have ever seen in their glory and work out how they have ended up in such hellish place.



I do hope that the fans of horror and fantasy will find my book interesting and enjoyable. The idea of writing this story came to me with a confused man walking awkwardly along an empty street surrounded by old and dusty houses. And here it is, I’ve created a world where our hero fights for the second chance.






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Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Vanishing Acts by Jodi Picoult

        

Published: 2008
Publisher: Hodder
Format: Paperback
Page count: 417



I hadn't read a Jodi Picoult novel in forever so i decided to dive into vanishing acts. I usually find Jodi's novels really easy to get lost in but sadly this wasn't the case here.
I had read a few reviews on goodreads before starting. I usually try not to do this as I find it effects my experience too much. I'm glad I did though. I agree with every other review that says the Hopi element added nothing to the core story. Sometimes I feel like when Jodi find a new subject to obsess over she'll do anything to stick it into a novel regardless of whether it really fits or not.

There are quite a few characters in the story but I didn't have the same trouble others did at keeping up.


*Spoiler Warning** 

Delia was taken as a child. Now she helps others who are lost with her bloodhound Greta. The difference here is that she was kidnapped by her father in an effort to protect her from her alcoholic mother. I could reason with Andrew to an extent but I found the lack of concern for Delia's mother unnerving. Yes she made mistakes but her punishment was incredibly cruel. He just decided to declare himself judge, jury and executioner .
As the prosecution argued why couldn't Andrew have let her know that Delia was safe when she was 18? She couldn't have forced her to come back then as she would have legally been an adult 

*Spoiler Ends*

Unlike other readers I actually enjoyed the jail scenes. They added some life to the story. It would have been really dull otherwise. The events inside the prison, for me, just enforced the fact that Andrew had a dark that Delia never really knew of.

I found Eric (Delia's Fiance and her fathers lawyer) a bit daft at times. He never really made sense nor was he ever actually believable. I also think there was a missed opportunity for more tension between him and Delia over the facts of the trial

Unlike her other novels there is no big twist here. If you've read her other novels then you'll probably be able to guess the ending.

I found vanishing acts pretty underwhelming on the whole.



Rating:

★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

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Friday, 10 October 2014

Giveaway: Destiny's Anvil by @hickswrites

 Synopsis


Will Guidry’s career as a backwater lawyer is going nowhere until he has a couple of beers with up-and-coming political operative Tucker Callahan, whose family’s petrochemical fortune instills in him a confidence bordering on hubris. As Tucker explains to his rudderless brother, Carter, “Guidry and I made a deal because he needed a miracle and I wanted to play God.”

Guidry rides Tucker’s political horse sense into the office of Louisiana’s Attorney General, while Tucker capitalizes on Guidry’s victory to bolster his own political reputation. But what should become a powerful alliance deteriorates into a bitter feud when Guidry tries to flex his political muscle and Tucker suspects he may have maneuvered a calculating sociopath into the marble halls of power.

Caught in the crossfire is Carter, the story’s narrator. Devastated by betrayal at the hands of his brother and the woman he loved for a lifetime, a brooding Carter remains content to watch the power struggle between Tucker and Guidry from the sidelines. Everything changes when he stumbles on the charismatic attorney general committing a monstrous crime, and finds himself drawn into the vortex of his brother’s private war.
Racing from a bungled execution through ruthless political payback and a no-holds-barred courtroom showdown, before culminating in a bloodbath by the side of a bayou, the stakes continue to rise and Carter finds his small-town naiveté peeling away. Replacing it is a mounting dread of what will happen when the hammer of Fate meets destiny’s anvil.


 Giveaway

 About the Author


Steven Hicks came to Mississippi in 1974 and spent the next quarter century writing for various advertising agencies, including his own. He wrote commercials and print ads about hot dogs and other baloney, used cars, barbecue shacks, sunscreen, banks galore, white bread, undertakers, churches, casinos, turkey calls, finger-lickin’ chicken and symphony orchestras. Some of the work was thoughtful. Some was funny. Most was neither.
During that period of time, he earned the enmity of his competitors and peers by being named Mississippi’s top copywriter nine times, winning six certificates of excellence in the International CLIO Awards, over 150 ADDY Awards, Radio Mercury honors and being included in Who’s Who in American Advertising.



Thank you to Book Publicity Services for sponsoring this giveaway




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Monday, 6 October 2014

From Page to Screen : Gone Girl




**Warning. Contains spoilers for both the book and the movie**


Before we start can I just say that this gif perfectly sums up my experience in the cinema last night.





In case you've been living under a rock and have no idea what Gone Girl is. Here is a synopsis of the movie which has been adapted from Gillian Flynn's best selling novel:


GONE GIRL - directed by David Fincher and based upon the global bestseller by Gillian Flynn - unearths the secrets at the heart of a modern marriage. On the occasion of his fifth wedding anniversary, Nick Dunne (Ben Affleck) reports that his beautiful wife, Amy (Rosamund Pike), has gone missing. Under pressure from the police and a growing media frenzy, Nick's portrait of a blissful union begins to crumble. Soon his lies, deceits and strange behavior have everyone asking the same dark question: Did Nick Dunne kill his wife? 



 For me the casting was spot on. Affleck did a great job portraying nicks stony faced attitude throughout the early stages of Amy's disappearance. Margo was exactly as I imagined her. I don't think they could have gotten a closer match!

The star of the show was no doubt Rosamund's performance of Amy. She's incredibly beautiful while still have that glint of madness in her eye. The perfect predator.

One thing that really surprised me was how many times I laughed during the film! This little moments never happened in the book but they worked extremely well on screen.

Certain characters didn't make it into the film or had a smaller part. Tanner Bolt's wife is no where to be seen and Nick's parents only make a brief appearance. This didn't really affect the story though.

Now for the downsides.

For me what was missing from the film was the who-dunnit back and forth tension. I never really believed that Nick killed Amy. I was concerned that my knowledge of the book had swayed this opinion so I asked my mum if she had ever thought during the beginning that Nick had actually killed Amy?  Her answer, was no. In fact she never actually believed that Amy of dead at any point during the movie.

This was major for me. The main attraction of Gone Girl for me was the tension throughout the book. I genuinely thought Nick had killed her which makes the twist such a major shock.  

I felt that the antifreeze story line should have been included as it really showed Amy's psychopathic planning abilities. Same with the story of her stalker in school. 

I loved the book ending. I thought it was perfect. The movie...not so much. Amy didn't get her final word. Nicks final words in the film were nowhere near as powerful as the book.

So Should you go see Gone Girl?

100% yes. It's a great movie. No one was expecting it to be as good as the book but its great in it's own right. Even with the changes and omissions it still makes for a really entertaining watch!

Rating:

★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
 

Gone Girl: Your Questions Answered


For those who haven't read the book ( and don't intend to)


What the hell is wrong with Amy!?

Amy is a narcissistic sociopath. She believes she is perfect and everyone else must also think she's perfect or they will be punished. Her school friend choose some else to invite round to her house. In return Amy  throws herself down the stairs , breaking ribs and says her friend pushed her and had been stalking her. She also resents her parents. To her Amazing Amy is the daughter they wanted but didn't have.



Why did Andie do the press conference and what happened to her?

In a scene missing from the movie Nick breaks up with Andie and she bites him on the cheek. The press conference is her way of getting back at him. Afterwards she meets someone her own age and is very happy apparently.



Is Amy really pregnant? How, Nick says he never touched her?

Yes she is. She took his sperm from the fertility clinic that they had previously attended. 



What was with that Ending!?

The ending divides people. It's slightly different in the book but to me it was perfect. Nick doesn't know who he is without Amy. As she says he could never be happy with a perfect little mid western girl. As fucked up as she was, she brought out the best in him. He tried to be the best version of himself for her. This is Amy's version.

The reality is he's fucked with or without her. As in the book: If she is willing to throw herself down a stairs for a friend who chooses someone else what will she do to the fool whos dumb enough to marry her?
If he left he'd never see his child. He'd never know what sort of hate she'd instill their child. The truth is that she'd probably find some way to kill him...and get away with it!


If you have any other questions leave them in the comments and i'll add them 

 



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Sunday, 5 October 2014

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

              


Originally Published in 2012
Publisher: Orion Books
Format: Kindle 


**Warning. This review contains spoilers.**


"One should never marry a man who doesn’t own a decent set of scissors. That would be my advice. It leads to bad things."

Part one


Right from the beginning Gone girl hooked its claws into me and wouldn't let go. All life around me ceased to exist while I was reading this.

Amy is Gone. Nick her husband had become the number one suspect. All eyes fall on him. It's the husband....its always the husband.

Amy's story is told through a series of Diary entries. Her picture is not a happy one 

"Sometimes I feel like Nick has decided on a version of me that doesn’t exist"

I never really liked Amy at any point during the book. I felt like she was the making of her own unhappiness. Outwardly she constantly plays "cool girl". Nick wants to go out with the guys...fine. Her blows off a dinner with her because he want's to go out with the guys...fine. She won't be the one to turn him into a dancing monkey like all the others. Yet inside she is crumbling because she refuses to sit down and discuss her problems with him. 


"Just to make sure I’m not crazy. I’ve got a calendar, and I put hearts on any day Nick seems to love me again, and black squares when he doesn’t. The past year was all black squares, pretty much."

She documents everything yet acts on nothing...or so we are lead to believe

Gillian writing is very convincing though. With each chapter my loyalties flipped back and forth. However even with Nick being an utter dickhead I didn't completely fall for her syrupy version of the story.


Part Two

The beginning of the book is intriguing but from here on in things really got interesting. I knew something was coming but it still brought out that what the fuck reaction in me. I love it when a book does that. 

Nick is starting to wake up to the true nature of the psychopath he married. Amy is perfect and the world most only see her as perfect. Everyone else is responsible for her happiness and her perfect image and if the flaw, even once she doles out punishment "Old testament style"

If she punished a friend of a few months by throwing herself down a flight of stairs, what would she do to a man who was dumb enough to marry her?’


Amy is a planner. She has a plan A, B and C and two other back up plans in case they don't work out. She is a genius...to a point. The amazing thing is that she realizes this so she even has a back up story in case her lies become untangled.  She's like Annie Wilkes from Misery, if she took acid.


Part Three


Nick knows what he should do. Amy is poison but she has utterly consumed him. He doesn't know who he is without her.  Does Amy bring out the best in him? In a way, yes. Amy is perfect. Nick must act like Amy is perfect. She ensures that this is the way things work. 

Opinions seem to be divided on the ending. I thought it was perfect. Amy of course has to have the final word. Thats what had to happen. But has she won? I dont think so.

"I said: ‘My gosh, Nick, why are you so wonderful to me?’ He was supposed to say: You deserve it. I love you. But he said, ‘Because I feel sorry for you.’ ‘Why?’ ‘Because every morning you have to wake up and be you.’"


Rating:

★★★★★ 
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Thursday, 2 October 2014

I don't want to kill you by Dan Wells



Published: March 2011
Publisher: Tor Books
Format: eBook


*Warning this review contains info that will spoil the first book and maybe the second. Do not read if you are planning to start this series!*



I can't believe the angle that Dan wells took with this book. I was so disappointing. I suppose I should have seen it coming as I really didn't love the second book.

I felt like Wells completely disregarded everything he had built up in the previous two books. It was like John had lost most of his psychopathic tenancies. Yeah sure he is still sort of fantasizing about embalming his female interests but that's about it.

All of his "rules" seem to have been thrown out the window. He's so busy battling these demons that his inner demons seem to have disappeared. Maybe that was the point. I'm beginning to think that John was never really a sociopath. Merely another misunderstood weird and awkward teen.

I found the whole book just two predictable. Which sort of leads me to asking why John hadn't figured it all out earlier seen as he's so perceptive?

Overall I felt this series could have been so much more. The demon hunting added nothing for me. It made the whole thing too YA for me. I think Johns struggles with normal life alone would have been enough to make a gripping story.

If your a fan of paranormal YA then I'm sure you'll find something to enjoy in this series but others will find it too simplified and lacking in the character growth and story progression side of things


Rating:

★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆

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