Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Code Name Verity


(Goodreads) I have two weeks. You’ll shoot me at the end no matter what I do.

That’s what you do to enemy agents. It’s what we do to enemy agents. But I look at all the dark and twisted roads ahead and cooperation is the easy way out. Possibly the only way out for a girl caught red-handed doing dirty work like mine — and I will do anything, anything, to avoid SS-Hauptsturmführer von Linden interrogating me again.

He has said that I can have as much paper as I need. All I have to do is cough up everything I can remember about the British War Effort. And I’m going to. But the story of how I came to be here starts with my friend Maddie. She is the pilot who flew me into France — an Allied Invasion of Two.

We are a sensational team.

The Short Story? - A powerful novel about loyalty, friendship and sacrifice. While I didn't feel like the book lived up to all the hype and raving reviews, it was nevertheless a heart-wrenching read that will move readers to tears (if you're a sucker for sob stories like me). The book was a little slow but the ending was absolutely devastating and definitely worth the build up. Well-written, Wein clearly knows her stuff about planes and war, there are a lot of technical aspects that in this book and it's very detailed and interesting. The characters were endearing, I absolutely loved both of the girls. Overall, it was a really good book, I think I would have enjoyed it more if I hadn't gone into reading with such high expectations.

The Long Story? - I was so excited to read Code Name Verity after reading so many reviews from other bloggers raving about how good it is. Unfortunately, this book fell short of the hype for me and I think part of the reason is because I expected too much from it. The novel as a whole was really well-written and enjoyable. It was refreshingly in the sense that the book actually focused on the power of this incredible friendship between the two protagonists. Wein didn't mask the horrors of war behind some love story, it was something different from the norm of the YA market. The pace was a little slow for my liking, most of it was just recounting past events. The book was also very technical, Wein goes into a lot of details about planes and war, great if you love that kind of stuff, not so great if you don't. I personally didn't mind the details. I absolutely loved the ending, it really took my breath away ( I might have shed a couple of tears), it was the best ending that a book like this could have been given. Devastating but not unreasonable and completely unforgettable, I have to give Wein credit for such a spectacular ending. 

The book is written in two parts, the first from Verity's perspective (not her actual name -duh, I'll leave that as something for you guys to find out) and the second from Maddie's perspective. I adoredVerity as a character, she was so brave. For her to keep her head up during what she had to endure, I honestly salute this girl. I grew to really like Verity and while I couldn't relate to her, I could connect with her and understand her. Maddie, on the other hand, was definitely the less vibrant of the two characters, we have very different personalities however her section of the book was easier to read. I admire Maddie for what she had to do, it would have absolutely wrecked her but she did the right thing (haha vague!). I think Wein did a fantastic job portraying these two very different characters and she's developed this beautiful and believable friendship between the two girls. 

As you can see, there isn't much I didn't like about this book but I just felt that it fell short of my expectations. I expected more from Code Name Verity but overall it was very enjoyable and heart-wrenching read. I would definitely recommend this book because it's different from the other books on the market, there is no love story, it's set in a very dark part of history and the friendship and sacrifice between the two girls is incredible. Definitely worth a read! 


Badass Bookie xx

Where I've Been

I don't know how many of you still circulate this GHOST TOWN of a blog but hello to all those who are still here! Apparently you guys have been around more than I have and I'M SO SORRY FOR ABANDONING SHIP.


 Seriously, I can't believe how much dust has collected over Badass Bookie, it's been what? Three months since my last post? I came back this morning to -

- TWO months worth of unanswered emails (Biggest apology to all the cool publicists who send me emails only to get no reply)

- EIGHT(ish) reviews that still need to be written (I'm not leaving my desk until these are written TODAY)

- TEN books behind on my Goodreads Challenge (My challenge was 50 books...seriously)

- GAZILLION spam comments to delete

- COUNTLESS APOLOGIES TO MY READERS

- My TWITTER IS A WRECK AS WELL. *cries*

I'm honestly so so so so so so sooooooooo sorry for the lack of content on the blog for the past three months, I'm sorry to all the publicists who have been sending me review copies (which I'm slowly getting around to reading) and I'm sorry to my blog, Badass just hasn't received the love it deserves!


SO WHERE DID LISA GO?

Actually I've been right here, at my desk, for the last three months. Did I have internet? Sure! DID I HAVE A LIFE? NO. I'm currently in my senior year of high school and I feel like I've aged six years in the last three months. Honestly, senior year is horrible. The amount of late nights that I pull is ridiculous, I'm currently on Easter break but prior to my two week holidays, I had LITERALLY four hours of sleep OR LESS for three solid weeks. I'm not even exaggerating. It's been a lot like this -





I'm constantly studying or doing assignments and when I have free time, I'm too tired to do anything but sleep or eat. I have less free time to do all the things I used to be able to do like hanging out with friends, watching tv and of course, blog and read. It's literally been hell and while I'm back for now, who knows how long I'll stick around for this time? 

I'm going to try make time for my blog more from now, but this year is just so hard, I've had so many breakdowns already. I'm going to try post at least TWICE a week. It might not happen but I'm going to try. This year is just going to be a really really really bad year for Badass Bookie.

I've thought about giving up my blog but I love it too much to abandon it completely so all I can ask to from you guys is to excuse my lack of commitment, it's really not a choice because I kinda want a future you know?

I'm sorry. 

Badass Bookie xx

Monday, January 27, 2014

The Elite

Review Time! Okay so I was totally planning on posting a heap in January but instead I took another hiatus from posting (oops). In my defence, December was super busy on the blog AND I read a lot of books which need reviewing so I'm back (for now)! The Elite by Kiera Cass is the second book in the The Selection trilogy, I'm a huge fan of the first book so I'm glad that I found the time in December to finally get around to reading it! You can purchase a copy of The Elite from The Book Depository | The Nile | Booktopia | Bookworld. Thanks to HarperCollins for the review copy (sorry for the super late review)!

(Goodreads) Thirty-five girls came to the palace to compete in the Selection. All but six have been sent home. And only one will get to marry Prince Maxon and be crowned princess of Illea.

America still isn’t sure where her heart lies. When she’s with Maxon, she’s swept up in their new and breathless romance, and can’t dream of being with anyone else. But whenever she sees Aspen standing guard around the palace, and is overcome with memories of the life they planned to share. With the group narrowed down to the Elite, the other girls are even more determined to win Maxon over—and time is running out for America to decide.

Just when America is sure she’s made her choice, a devastating loss makes her question everything again. And while she’s struggling to imagine her future, the violent rebels that are determined to overthrow the monarchy are growing stronger and their plans could destroy her chance at any kind of happy ending.

The Short Story? - I'm aware there is a lot of hate out there for The Elite but I'm not sorry for LOVING THE BOOK. I loved The Selection but The Elite was so much better, I laughed, I cried, the book was an emotional roller coaster. There was more action and while some people found the love triangle to be annoying, personally I think it's one of the high points of the novel. This series has quite possibly one of the best love triangles out there, there is drama, intensity and scandal - what more do you want from a love triangle? Well written, great characterisation, The Elite was an incredible sequel to The Selection.

The Long Story? - I like to read reviews of books before I read them because it gives me perspective on the book. Before I read The Elite, I read a bunch of horrible reviews about how terrible the book was however I disagree with every one of those reviews. Just because a book isn't typical to the genre doesn't mean it's a bad book. I think people need to be more open-minded about the dystopian genre. It doesn't HAVE to have a crazy amount of action, a body count and an over-the-top rebellion movement. So what if romance is the main focus, personally I think it's refreshingly different. The Elite provided a nice alternative to the typical dystopian genre and there was action and drama incorporated into the plot even if it wasn't the main focus. I'm not a fan of love triangles but when it's well done - they make pretty great books and the love triangle America, Maxon and Aspen is a roller coaster ride. Beautifully written, I think Cass did an incredible job with this sequel and I look forward to reading the last instalment.

I'm very impressed with the characterisation, I thoroughly enjoyed the characterisation in book one but the growth in America as a character was amazing. She's starting to stand up for what she believes in even if it means dire consequences, I'm starting to see a fighting spirit inside her. My connection to America as a reader is incredible and I completely emphasise with her. Definitely a great protagonist who I expect great things from in book three! I'm very torn over Maxon because I love him and I'm rooting for Maxon 120% however he made poor choices and he needs to stick up to his father, HE NEEDS TO GROW A BACKBONE. Aspen is lovely but is very much overshadowed in this book and from what I did see of him in the book, I didn't really love. He's an okay guy and he always has America's back but I just don't think he's the one for her (read: I wouldn't be upset if he died).

I thoroughly enjoyed reading The Elite and it's definitely one of my favourite reads of 2013 (although I only read like 50 books). The writing was great, the characters were fantastic and I think Cass did a wonderful job with the world-building as we are starting to see more cracks in the society. I also loved the romance, the drama and the action of The Elite and I'm excited to see what kind of conclusion book 3 will bring. Two thumbs up for The Elite!

What's it Worth? - Hand Over the Paycheck 

Badass Bookie xx

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Day Twenty-Five: NIL + Giveaway!

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Book Profile

Name - Nil (Goodreads)
Author - Lynne Matson
Genre - YA Science Fiction
Release Date - March 4th 2014


On the mysterious island of Nil, the rules are set. You have one year. Exactly 365 days--to escape, or you die.

Seventeen-year-old Charley doesn’t know the rules. She doesn’t even know where she is. The last thing she remembers is blacking out, and when she wakes up, she’s lying naked in an empty rock field.

Lost and alone, Charley finds no sign of other people until she meets Thad, the gorgeous leader of a clan of teenage refugees. Soon Charley learns that leaving the island is harder than she thought . . . and so is falling in love. With Thad’s time running out, Charley realizes that to save their future, Charley must first save him. And on an island rife with dangers, their greatest threat is time.


Available - The Book Depository | Fishpond | Amazon | Barnes and Noble 

The Insider's Scoop

1) The original title of NIL was DAYWATCH, because the kids are watching the days, but the more I wrote, the less that title fit. Plus, DAYWATCH sounds a lot like BAYWATCH, which is SO not what I was going for.;) 

2) NIL was born in Hawaii, on the big island. My husband had won a trip with his company, and it was our first real getaway from our four boys, EVER. After we landed, as we left the airport, we drove through miles of ancient lava fields. Broken red rock stretched endlessly on each side, gorgeous and desolate. There were no roads, no buildings, no people–just the sound of wind blowing over the barren rocks. The surrounding silence was powerful, like it had a presence all its own. I remember thinking how creepy it would be to wake up there, all alone, and I remember thinking how much it all looked like an alien planet (think DUNE). And I remember thinking how scary it would be as a teenager, to wake up by yourself, not having a clue where you were or how you how got there, and what if–because isn’t this every person’s worst nightmare?!–what if you woke up naked? NIL was born in that moment. 

3) NIL is told from a dual POV, and the timeline is continuous with one exception: the scene where Charley and Thad first meet. That one moment is seen through both character's eyes. 

4) Characters come from all over the globe, which I felt was important to the core of the story.

5) Not every character escapes….
*runs away before I spill ALL THE SEKRITS* :)

~Giveaway~


Lynne is giving away SIGNED Hardback Copy of NIL + Swag!

Rule of Entry -

INTERNATIONAL
- Ends 25th of January
- Must be 13 or older
- Optional Entries :
   * Leaving comment on either of Lynne's posts +2 each
   * Follow Me on Twitter +1
   * Follow Lynne on Twitter +1 (@LSMatson)
   * Like Lynne Matson Books on Facebook +1
   * Tweeting Giveaway +1
   * Follow Badass Bookie via GFC/Linky or RSS +2

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Badass Bookie xx

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Day Twenty-Four: Lynne Matson (NIL)

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Debutante Profile


Name - Lynne Matson
Debut - Nil
Publisher - Henry Holt
Genre - YA Science Fiction

Website - HERE
Facebook - HERE
Twitter - HERE

Lynne is a former attorney who thinks writing books is much more fun. Her debut novel, NIL, a YA thriller with a SF twist, will be published by Macmillan/Henry Holt on March 4, 2014. When she's not writing or reading, you'll find her hanging out with her husband and their 4 boys, probably at the beach. Cookies are her kryptonite, especially thin mints.



Dream Debutante Dress - 

"I'm SO excited about being a Debutante (thank you Lisa!) and getting to pick a killer formal dress…not that I wear fancy dresses much because, um, did I mention I'm mom to four boys?! And I live in Florida so I basically live in shorts, t-shirts, and flip-flops. I picked this sleek white dress worn by Jennifer Lawrence (love her!) for three reasons: (1) it's sleek and simple, which is how I dress anyway, (2) did I mention I LOVE JLaw?! and (3) it's kind of NIL-ish. There's nothing fancy on NIL, but the kids there make clothes out of a white material, so if there were a formal dress on NIL this one would be it."

Notes from a YA Debutante

I LOVE lists. They make me feel more organized than I really am. LOL So here's ten possibly-interesting-and-totally-true facts about me!

10. I constantly have story ideas running through my head, and take notes on anything I happen to have handy--a grocery receipt, a crinkled school paper one of my boys dropped on the floor of my car, a magazine cover. I try to keep a notebook in my purse, but sometimes after taking it out to type up my notes, I forget to put it back.

9. I take a lot of voice memos on my phone while out for a run or walk. I never have to type those up for some reason; just the act of putting my words into a coherent sentence spoken out loud seems to make it gel in my head. Strange but true.:D

8. I think paddleboarding on the ocean at sunrise = one of the best way to start a day EVER.:D

7. My first job out of college was as a salesperson at The Gap. On my first day, I learned how to fold t-shirts using a clipboard. To this day, whenever I see a clipboard, I think of t-shirts. And I run the other away. (Kidding--about the running. But not about the clipboard.:D)

6. I think oysters are nasty. *shudders* I've tried them but can't get past the slime factor.

5. Coconuts are nearly impossible to crack open with a rock. I tried. *nearly ;D

4. I love music, especially alternate music, but I love all kinds of tunes! Music is a HUGE source of inspiration for me, and I couldn't have written NIL--or anything else--without music.

3. I hate stopping to get gas (I don't know why but I hate it) and so my car always runs dangerously low.

2. I totally believe in love at first sight--or at least, the super-powerful-insta-connection that leads to love in a CRAZY short amount of time. (See number 1, below.:D)

1. I met my husband my first year of college and fell hard and fast from word one. And right after we met, he told his roommate "I just met the girl I'm going to marry." And he was right. So the crazy connection can totally go both ways.:)

Bonus fact: I'M SO EXCITED FOR YOU TO READ NIL!!!!!!! I can't wait for you to meet Charley and Thad . . . and Nil, the creepy place that doesn't exist--and yet, it does.:)

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Bookie's Note: Lynne, your enthusiasm is contagious! I'm smiling like a crazy person after reading your list. I couldn't live without music, I'm forever with a pair of headphones stuck in my ears (I'm not even kidding, earphones in at least 16hrs a day) and I absolutely love alternative music! I hate oysters too, cooked and uncooked, I just can't handle them. Nasty things! I'm not much of a believer of love at first sight but your story is so cute, now I can't wait to see what happens during MY first year of college :D Guys, make sure to come back tomorrow to not only get the insider's scoop on NIL but also for a giveaway (AND TO SEE THE NEW COVER!)

Badass Bookie xx

Monday, December 23, 2013

Day Twenty-Three: THE MURDER COMPLEX + Giveaway!

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Book Profile

Name - The Murder Complex (Goodreads)
Author - Lindsay Cummings
Genre - YA Futuristic Thriller
Release Date - June 10th 2014


An action-packed, blood-soaked, futuristic debut thriller set in a world where the murder rate is higher than the birthrate. For fans of Moira Young’s Dust Lands series, La Femme Nikita, and the movie Hanna.

Meadow Woodson, a fifteen-year-old girl who has been trained by her father to fight, to kill, and to survive in any situation, lives with her family on a houseboat in Florida. The state is controlled by The Murder Complex, an organization that tracks the population with precision.

The plot starts to thicken when Meadow meets Zephyr James, who is—although he doesn’t know it—one of the MC’s programmed assassins. Is their meeting a coincidence? Destiny? Or part of a terrifying strategy? And will Zephyr keep Meadow from discovering the haunting truth about her family?



Available - The Book Depository | Fishpond | Amazon | Barnes and Noble 

The Insider's Scoop

1) The Murder Complex was always the original title! I was so happy that it never changed.

2) Meadow Woodson is me…Zephyr James is my husband. (Except I don't murder people, and my husband doesn't do that MAJOR thing that Zephyr does to change his and Meadow's life.) We have all the same character traits, personality ticks, and looks.

3) Originally, The Murder Complex was only 50,000 words long! When it sold, I added about that much to it!

4) It took me 2 weeks to write the first draft of TMC….and then 2 years to edit it.

5) While I was writing TMC, I carried a knife around with me, so I would know how Meadow always felt carrying her weapon.

6) THE FEAR TRIALS is a Murder Complex prequel novella, from Meadow's point of view. It's coming out a month before book 1 :) So you guys will get a taste of the world ahead of time. That book is all about Meadow's training!

To find out what early readers are saying about THE MURDER COMPLEX, check out these sites!

Evie Seo- HERE
Rachel from Canada- HERE
Ang- HERE

~Giveaway~


Lindsay is giving away (2) TWO preorder of THE MURDER COMPLEX and THE FEAR TRIALS (the TMC prequel novella)!
Rule of Entry -

INTERNATIONAL
- Ends 23rd of January
- Must be 13 or older
- Optional Entries :
   * Leaving comment on either of Lindsay's posts +2 each
   * Follow Me on Twitter +1
   * Follow Lindsay on Twitter +1 (@lindsaycwrites)
   * Add THE MURDER COMPLEX on Goodreads +1
   * Tweeting Giveaway +1
   * Follow Badass Bookie via GFC/Linky or RSS +2

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Badass Bookie xx

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Day Twenty-Two: Lindsay Cummings (THE MURDER COMPLEX)

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Debutante Profile

Name - Lindsay Cummings
Debut - The Murder Complex
Publisher - HarperCollins/Greenwillow
Genre – YA Futuristic Thriller

Website– HERE
Blog - HERE
Twitter - HERE

Lindsay Cummings lives in Texas with her husband, 2 german shepherds, a wolf, and a draft horse named Dan the Man. She is the leader of the #booknerdigans army, and the author of THE MURDER COMPLEX series and THE BALANCE KEEPERS series, both coming from HarperCollins in 2014.


Dream Debutante Dress - 


Notes from a YA Debutante

10 Facts About Me-

1) I'm a major fangirl. Like….MAJOR. My poor husband thinks I need to be institutionalised.

2) I collect weapons and I think my apartment neighbours also think I need to be institutionalised.

3) I talk to my dogs all day, with different voices for each of them…and they think I need to be institutionalised, too.

4) I take naps every day. Long naps. Awesome naps.

5) One time, I fell down the stairs of my middle school, head over heels, with my backpack wide open, and papers scattered EVERYWHERE, and people laughed at me. Ugh.

6) My dream car is a Challenger OR the car from Supernatural.

7) I have naturally curly hair, which I HATE, but once I saw The Hunger Games, I realised that if Katniss can make curly hair cool….maybe I can, too.

8) One time I got attacked by a herd of reindeer. 

9) I sing my thoughts, because I think life is a musical.

10) I want just ONE more tattoo, but my husband says no more. Can we convince him, world?!

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Bookie's Note: Lindsay, life IS a musical. You have no idea how many times a day I break into a dance number, I wish I could walk around with a group of chorus girls on every day ending in 'y'. Where's the harm in ONE more tattoo? I take long naps quite often as well, in fact, I just woke up from one :P It's so relaxing, especially on a Sunday afternoon. The first thing that comes to mind when you said you collected weapons was Kill Bill. That's such a badass thing to collect, I collect books and shoes and handbags and I'M SUCH A GIRLLLLLL :O. Guys, make sure to check back tomorrow for the second half of Lindsay's feature where she gives the INSIDER'S SCOOP on THE MURDER COMPLEX!

Badass Bookie xx