Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Perfect Scoundrels

Review Time! One simply does not review an Ally Carter novel without abusing CAPLOCKS and EXCLAMATION MARKS!!! After a long and painful wait, we finally have the 3rd book of Ally Carter's Heist Society series! This is one of my favourite series in the world and ugh, I'm still fangirling. You can purchase a copy of Perfect Scoundrels from Fishpond | The Nile | Booktopia | Bookworld. Thanks to Hachette Childrens for the review copy!

(Goodreads) Katarina Bishop and W.W. Hale the fifth were born to lead completely different lives: Kat comes from a long, proud line of loveable criminal masterminds, while Hale is the scion of one of the most seemingly perfect dynasties in the world. If their families have one thing in common, it's that they both know how to stay under the radar while getting--or stealing--whatever they want. No matter the risk, the Bishops can always be counted on, but in Hale's family, all bets are off when money is on the line. When Hale unexpectedly inherits his grandmother's billion dollar corporation, he quickly learns that there's no place for Kat and their old heists in his new role. But Kat won't let him go that easily, especially after she gets tipped off that his grandmother's will might have been altered in an elaborate con to steal the company's fortune. So instead of being the heir--this time, Hale might be the mark. Forced to keep a level head as she and her crew fight for one of their own, Kat comes up with an ambitious and far-reaching plan that only the Bishop family would dare attempt. To pull it off, Kat is prepared to do the impossible, but first, she has to decide if she's willing to save her boyfriend's company if it means losing the boy.

The Short Story? - If there is anything I know for sure, it's that Ally Carter never fails to impress. If any author can keep a reader hooked without a cliff hanger ending, it's Carter. Perfect Scoundrels was everything I hoped it would be and more, my favourite novel of the series so far, Carter pushes boundaries to a whole new level with this action-packed instalment of Kat's life of crime. Putting both Kat's abilities and her relationship with Hale to the test, Carter's Perfect Scoundrels is a phenomenally epic read!

The Long Story? - Ally Carter is a genius because ordinary people don't just don't have the brain capacity to spin such a complicated plot yet manage to tie every single loose thread before the last page. What a mind-blowing plot! I definitely wasn't expecting this heist to be so personal to the gang and I wasn't expecting all these developments between Kat and Hale. The feels I got just reading about all the obstacles that Kat had to go around romantically and on the job, just broke my heart. Perfect Scoundrel was nothing less than an emotional roller coaster. Unpredictable, complex and incredibly clever, the detail in this plot was just astonishing. I still cannot get over how sneaky Carter is, I'm half convinced her books are actually based on her own life because no one can write fiction THIS WELL. This is action-packed perfection. If you like edgy, dangerous and exciting books about teenage criminals, I definitely recommend Ally Carter's Heist Society series to you!

I'm a sucker for characters with charm and if there is anything that this group of teenagers have, it's charm. They're all charming in their own way and it's not just the looks although Hale is definitely very, VERY good-looking. It's the way they act and the manner their hold themselves. It's the cool and collected nature of their personalities. I WANT TO BE JUST LIKE THEM. Kat has grown so much from the first book, she's the same girl but...not. I feel like she's more confident and that her emotions come through better. She's easier to connect with and her relationship with Hale is just so natural and cute in the "not all in your face way". Their love for each other is subtle but it's very much there. To see their relationship strained under the intense plot that is Perfect Scoundrel really affected me because these characters are just so real to me. Hale definitely stole the show in this book, the death of his grandmother really affected him and his emotional unstableness in this book was heartbreaking to read. Perfect Scoundrels was definitely a book filled with emotional ups and downs and that's what makes a brilliant book. Fantastic!

I can't tell you how much I loved this book, Perfect Scoundrels was perfection in bookish form. Ally Carter is a literary genius. Filled with action and seductively dangerous and exciting, I highly recommend Perfect Scoundrels and the series as a whole to everyone who hasn't read it. This rush I get when reading this series is indescribable, absolutely fantastic! I await whatever Carter has planned for us next! A MUST READ!

What's it Worth? - STEAL IT. 

Badass Bookie xx

Monday, February 25, 2013

Life in Outer Space

Review Time! Life in Outer Space is the first book published through Hardie Grant Egmonts Ampersand Project. A project dedicated to publishing YA works of fiction by unpublished authors. Melissa Keil  is the first author to be published through this project! YAY for Aussie YA fiction and 2013 YA Debuts! You can purchase a copy of Life in Outer Space from Fishpond | The Nile | Booktopia | Bookworld. Thanks to Hardie Grant Egmont for the review copy!

(Goodreads) Sam Kinnison is a geek, and he’s totally fine with that. He has his horror movies, his nerdy friends, World of Warcraft – and until Princess Leia turns up in his bedroom, he doesn’t have to worry about girls.

Then Sam meets Camilla. She’s beautiful, friendly and completely irrelevant to his life. Sam is determined to ignore her, except that Camilla has a life of her own – and she’s decided that he’s going to be part of it.

Sam believes that everything he needs to know he can learn from the movies ... but now it looks like he’s been watching the wrong ones.

The Short Story? - Keil's Life in Outer Space is a heart warming story about growing up and pushing social boundaries. The story of a group of high school misfits and the girl who changes everything, Life in Outer Space is everything that I imagined it would be. Funny, quirky and adorkably cute, Keil's debut is unlike anything I've ever read. With a brilliant yet socially awkward male protagonist and his equally as awkward motley crew, Life in Outer Space offers readers a refreshingly realistic and relatable take on growing up and the power of friendship, love and everything dorky!

The Long Story? - Under normal circumstances, this probably wouldn't have been my cup of tea. I'm not normally one to be found reading novels about growing up (unless there are hot boys involved) or books with geeky references throughout it (because I don't get 95% of them) but somehow I found myself enjoying Life in Outer Space very much. There is something refreshingly about this debut, I loved that it pushed social boundaries, I loved the emphasis on friendship and I like the routine of the whole novel, it's so steady yet funny and not at all boring. I would have liked to see a little more romance which is funny because everyone else LOVES this book because of the minimalistic romance but I'M A GIRL (sue me!). I can't say that I understood many of the geeky references made throughout the novel but I enjoyed it nevertheless. There is something light and fluffy about this plot and I can definitely see why this book appeals to readers of both genders. Definitely a debut worth checking out!

The characterisation really did it for me. I wouldn't say I'm typically geeky or a "misfit" but I could definitely connect with Sam. I loved that the book was written through the perspective of a boy, honestly it's such an interesting perspective, authors should write through boys more often! Sam was so cute and adorkable, I just wanted to cuddle him and never let go! I loved reading about his adventures with his friends and his relationship with Camilla. His awkwardness and wittiness was irresistible and I want more than anything to plop down on the couch next to him and watch horror movies! His character development was well done, I'm glad to see him become more confident because there is no reason for him to have low self esteem, he's absolutely brilliant. Camilla was one of my favourite secondary characters, she's so down to earth and groovy! She doesn't care about what everyone else thinks and yet somehow everyone adores her for being who she is. She's such a lovely girl! All of Sam's other friends are all so lovely as well, I simply adored them all! I want to be their friend!!! Great characterisation!

I would highly recommend Life in Outer Space to any readers looking for a light hearted contemporary YA without a heavy emphasis on romance. This is the kind of novel everyone should read because it shows true appreciation for friendship which is what high school is about. It's about friendship not boys and I liked how that came through in Keil's debut (although you know I wouldn't hate the book either if it's overly romantic :D). All in all, I very much enjoyed Life in Outer Space and I'm sure many of you will too!

What's it Worth? - Squeeze Into the Budget/ Hand Over the Paycheck

Badass Bookie

Tuesday, February 19, 2013


Review Time! Prodigy by Marie Lu is the long anticipated sequel to Legend, a phenomenal 2011 YA Debut. You can read my review of Legend - HERE (It's really good!!!). I was so excited to read Prodigy and it was an added bonus that I read it so soon after I finished Legend so the story was still fresh! You can purchase a copy of Legend from The Book Depository | The Nile | Fishpond | Bookworld. Thanks to Penguin for the review copy!

(Goodreads) June and Day arrive in Vegas just as the unthinkable happens: the Elector Primo dies, and his son Anden takes his place. With the Republic edging closer to chaos, the two join a group of Patriot rebels eager to help Day rescue his brother and offer passage to the Colonies. They have only one request—June and Day must assassinate the new Elector.

It’s their chance to change the nation, to give voice to a people silenced for too long.

But as June realizes this Elector is nothing like his father, she’s haunted by the choice ahead. What if Anden is a new beginning? What if revolution must be more than loss and vengeance, anger and blood—what if the Patriots are wrong?

The Short Story? - Inspired by Les Miserables, Lu's dystopian YA series is an absolute stunner! With the perfect combination of action and romance, Prodigy exceeded all my expectations for the series! Beautiful character building, well written and the plot was exploding with secret agendas, twists and turns! A land mine of a plot, a beautifully flawed yet strong romance and two characters that stole my heart in their own ways. Lu has truly outdone herself with this extraordinary sequel to a phenomenal debut. Prodigy was completely and utterly amazing!

The Long Story? - One of the worst things that can happen with a series or trilogy is a downhill story. You don't want to read a mind blowing debut and then a completely lacking sequel. Fortunately in this case, Prodigy met all my expectations and then some! I absolutely loved it! There was drama, tension, action, mystery and to wrap it up, a romance tagline. It was just the perfect combination of everything that I love all between a beautiful cover. Well written and brilliantly planned, it's going to be pretty hard to beat a plot like this, I feel sorry for whatever book I have to review next! I also loved the introduction of new characters, the new turn of events AT THE VERY END are going to be very interesting. Undoubtedly, the next book is going to be even more amazing than Prodigy and I can't wait for it! Lu has done a spectacular job with this dystopian YA series, truly a polished gem!

To fall in love with a book, you must fall in love with the characters first and I fell head over heels in love with both June and Day. Initially I was a little hesitant about the characters because they're awfully young for such a dramatised plot, I mean at 15 I wasn't starting revolutions or saving the republic however both have shown outstanding maturity and ugh, I just love them soooo much! June, it's astounding how much she's grown since Legend, she's really had it tough and the way she's dealt with everything is just so brave! Day, apart from being incredibly good looking was so perfect. He wasn't too nice and yes, in parts he was a little bit of a jerk but the way he always pulls through and his love June is so sweet! One of the best coupling in the YA genre, I couldn't be any happier! Although I love June and Day together, I can't help but wonder whether there will be anything between June and Anden. It probably won't be a love triangle but the best romances are the ones that survive all the obstacles!

I like to think of myself as a reasonable book critic, I always try to see the positive and the negative and in this case, I just can't find a negative! I enjoyed it immensely and while it wasn't The Gathering Dark ( which is my favourite book in the entire world!), Prodigy was as close to perfection as I'm willing to say! I highly recommend checking out this series, definitely worth a read! Lu better have something mind shattering planned for book 3 if she wants to meet all my high expectations! Two thumbs up for Prodigy!

What's It Worth? - Hand Over the Paycheck/ Break Out the Piggy Bank

Badass Bookie xx

Monday, February 18, 2013

Debut of the Month - All About The Ruining + Giveaway

Book Profile

Name - The Ruining (Goodreads)
Author - Anna Collomore
Genre -  Psychological Thriller
Release Date - February 7th 2013

Annie Phillips is thrilled to leave her past behind and begin a shiny new life on Belvedere Island, as a nanny for the picture-perfect Cohen family. In no time at all, she falls in love with the Cohens, especially with Libby, the beautiful young matriarch of the family. Life is better than she ever imagined. She even finds romance with the boy next door.

All too soon cracks appear in Annie's seemingly perfect world. She's blamed for mistakes she doesn't remember making. Her bedroom door comes unhinged, and she feels like she's always being watched. Libby, who once felt like a big sister, is suddenly cold and unforgiving. As she struggles to keep up with the demands of her new life, Annie's fear gives way to frightening hallucinations. Is she tumbling into madness, or is something sinister at play? 

Available - The Book Depository | Indiebound | Bookish | Barnes and Noble

The Insider's Scoop

1.) I am a part-time nanny, just like Annie, my protagonist. However, I wrote The Ruining several months before my friends here in Paris contacted me to offer me the job. It's 100% coincidental that I wrote a book about a nanny...then took a job as a nanny.

2.) I wrote three different endings for The Ruining. They were all drastically different, and sometimes I go back and wish I could swap out the one I went with for a previous (more sinister) one!

3.) Bits and pieces of Owen, Annie's love interest, were drawn from real life. My boyfriend at the time I was writing the novel had a Rhodesian Ridgeback named Zizzy (Owen's dog is Izzy), was known to eat sardines from a can, and liked to play Words with Friends. Another previous boyfriend was a volunteer EMT. And like Owen, one of my brothers competed in the National Spelling Bee. (There really was a crying room.)

4.) I had a marathon writing session with one of my good friends (Jess Rothenberg, author of The Catastrophic History of You and Me), just before my first draft was due. I wrote 40+ pages over the course of two days, fueled by sparkling wine and an array of gourmet snack items. It was one of my favorite friend-writing-sessions ever.

5.) I wrote The Ruining during lunch breaks, nights and weekends (while working full-time) over the course of 2 1/2 months...and my mental state (as a result of stress and a lack of sleep) was really weird. It's probably why I was able to portray Annie's slipping sanity in a somewhat convincing way.

"Gripping, unputdownable stuff."--Booklist

"This story unwinds as a corker of a read...gripping stuff." --Kirkus, Starred Review


Anna is giving away (1) Hardcover Copy of The Ruining 

Rule of Entry -

- Ends 18th of March
- Must be 12 or older
- Optional Entries :
   * Leaving comment on either of Anna's posts +1 each
   * Follow Me on Twitter +1
   * Follow Anna on Twitter +1
   * Tweeting Giveaway +1
   * Follow Badass Bookie via GFC/Linky or RSS +2

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Badass Bookie xx

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Debut of the Month - All About Anna Collomore (The Ruining)

Debutante Profile

Name – Anna Collomore 
Debut – The Ruining 
Genre – Psychological Thriller 
Website– HERE
Facebook -  HERE
Twitter - HERE

Anna Collomore is the debut author of The Ruining (Penguin/Razorbill, February 2013). A former book editor from New York City, Anna now lives and writes in Paris. When she's not reading or writing, Anna can be generally be found in patisseries, thrift stores, parks, flower shops, or (embarrassingly) bars that mimic Brooklyn.

Dream Debutante Dress -  It's Vera Wang bridal, but I figure the blush pink tone makes it versatile.

Notes from a YA Debutante

10 Things About Anna: 

1.) I have only 1.12 remaining kidneys.

2.) I was really little when the AIDS crisis was full-on emerging. My childhood friend had recently kissed me, and I became convinced I had AIDS. For months (it felt like a year), I thought I was going to die. I was afraid to tell my parents. Finally I asked someone how you get AIDS and realized my error. It was probably the most anxiety I've ever felt in my life.

3.) I went through a short phase one summer in which I searched for dead animals (with a wheelbarrow) and gave them funerals.

4.) I lived in Mumbai, India, for about 15 months. Once when I was bopping around town, my friend Salim (who was driving the car we were in) drove over a man. The man did not have any legs and had been crossing the street on his wheeled platform--then the light changed and Salim gunned it. Thankfully, the man wasn't hurt--but our car was almost the focus of a mini-riot. 

5.) I live in a tiny chambre de bonne (servant's room) on the very top floor of a 6-story building in Paris. My floor is technically the 7th, but it is unnumbered and the elevator only goes to the 6th. So you go to the 6th, enter a secret door, take a spiral staircase up to another floor, and then walk down a hallway of unmarked doors...until you get to my room. I have a sloping roof with one little window, but it is not without it's charm--it's a storybook Parisian garret. 

6.) I nearly got kicked out of my dorm in college (and could have been kicked out of college altogether) for lying to my RA in order to protect a friend.

7.) I interviewed LeBron James for the teen section of my local newspaper when I was 17, and he had just been featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated. He gave me an autograph signed, "Thanks, beautiful," and I pinned it to my bedroom wall, where it stayed for about 6 months.

8.) I used to be able to quote along with every single Saved by the Bell episode in existence. 

9.) My junior year of high school, I received a fake detention. My teacher thought it would be hilarious because I was such a big nerd. However, I wasn't that fazed--I served it and he had his laugh, and a couple years later he got fired for harassment...so I guess the joke's on him?

10.) My favorite song to sing loudly in or out of the shower is Lady in Red. 


Bookie's Note: I just absolutely adore our February Debutantes don't you? Anna, what an INTERESTING life you've had, so many fun and quirky memories. I must ask, 1.12 kidneys? O_o What an unusual number of kidneys to have! I'm so jealous that you live in Paris and that you've lived in India, honestly I would love to pack up, spin the globe and just live somewhere exotic for a couple of months! :D

Remember to come back tomorrow to see the second half of Anna's feature and for a giveaway! :)

Badass Bookie xx

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Debut of the Month - All About Blaze + Giveaway

Book Profile

Name - Blaze (Goodreads)
Author - Laurie Boyle Crompton
Genre -  Contemporary
Release Date - February 1st 2013

Blaze is tired of spending her life on the sidelines, drawing comics and feeling invisible. She's desperate for soccer star Mark to notice her. And when her BFF texts Mark a photo of Blaze in sexy lingerie, it definitely gets his attention. After a hot date in the back of her minivan, Blaze is flying high, but suddenly Mark's feelings seem to have been blasted by a freeze-ray gun, and he dumps her. Blaze gets her revenge by posting a comic strip featuring uber-villain Mark the Shark. Mark then retaliates by posting her "sext" photo, and, overnight, Blaze goes from Super Virgin Girl to Super Slut. That life on the sidelines is looking pretty good right about now...

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

The Insider's Scoop

While talking about Blaze in other interviews I’ve alluded to the fact that the first version of the book went in a very different direction and was rewritten considerably. I’m excited to share here for the very first time just how much of a drastic change the manuscript went through. The book was originally titled Fangirl and Her Subatomic Sweatmobile of Doom but that’s not the drastic part. That title could still work for this book. The big, huge, completely gigantic difference is that in the original version Blaze actually…wait for it… oh, and this is a little spoilerly, since after you read this you’ll know this isn’t what happens in the book, so you may want to stop and go read it first… but what I’m trying to tell you is that… in the first version Blaze actually… gets pregnant!

Yes, her encounter with Mark the Shark at one time ended with a positive pregnancy test! I’m sure you can imagine just how much of a different direction the book headed from that point on. Of course Blaze handled her situation with just as much humor and strength as she now handles getting slut shamed. It wasn’t easy for me to decide to make such a big change, especially since the original version was polished and ready to go at the time. Not to mention the fact that the pregnancy was, yanno… the whole plot of the book! But I’m so glad I went ‘back to the drawing board’ and rewrote the second half. It was the right thing to do and the two versions are still similar in many ways with serious issues adding weight to the light overall tone of the novel. I’m as happy with the results as Blaze was to get that now negative pregnancy test! I hope folks enjoy reading her story as much as I enjoyed writing it. And thank you so much for having me!


Laurie is giving away (1) SIGNED ARC of Blaze +Bookmarks!

Rule of Entry -

- Ends 16th of March
- Must be 13 or older
- Optional Entries :
   * Leaving comment on either of Laurie's posts +1 each
   * Follow Me on Twitter +1
   * Follow Laurie on Twitter +1
   * Tweeting Giveaway +1
   * Follow Badass Bookie via GFC/Linky or RSS +2

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Badass Bookie xx

Friday, February 15, 2013

Debut of the Month - All About Laurie Boyle Crompton (Blaze)

Debutante Profile

Name – Laurie Boyle Crompton 
Debut – Blaze
Genre – Contemporary
Website– HERE
Facebook -  HERE
Twitter - HERE

Laurie Boyle Crompton's debut, BLAZE (or, Love in the Time of Supervillains), is available now! Her next book with Sourcebooks is titled THE REAL PROM QUEENS OF WESTFIELD HIGH and her novel ADRENALINE will be published by FSG/Macmillan in 2014. Laurie caught the writing bug back in high school while reading one of her essays aloud to her classmates. They laughed in all the right places and it was like the opposite of that nightmare where everyone laughs as you stand there in your underwear. It made her giddy with power and she’s been happily writing ever since. Laurie and her family split their time between Queens and New Paltz, NY.

Dream Debutante Dress - What fangirl wouldn’t love this dress with a built-in cape? And if there’s one thing Batman has taught us all, everything comes down to who’s got the coolest accessories. 


Laurie has truly gone all out with her debutante gown, not only has she picked a mysterious yet beautiful dress, she has also found a mask (of sorts) and shoes to match. All she's missing a secret identity :P

Notes from a YA Debutante

10 Things About Laurie: 

1. She’s very excited to be a Badass Debut! As a superhero fangirl she loves to think of herself as Badass in as many ways as possible!

2. She grew up in Butler, Pennsylvania the small rural town where Blaze also happens to live. This is not because she is too lazy to research new settings. Okay, that may be part of the reason.

3. She got the heck out of Butler as soon as humanly possible and now resides on Long Island close to NYC. But she loves to steal away upstate to New Paltz which is a town quite similar to Butler in many ways. The irony of this is not lost on her.

4. If she could choose one superpower it would absolutely be the power to fly. Like, honestly more than a grown woman should wish she could fly.

5. She graduated first in her class from St. John’s University. This is because she loves to read and was an English major and not because she is actually all that smart.

6. Among her numerous jobs she once wrote for a toy magazine and appeared on television as a ‘toy expert.’ Yes, it was every bit as cool as that sounds.

7. She and her husband lived in England for six months before having children.

8. She likes feeling jet-lagged and wishes she could travel overseas more often. Just for the jet-lag. And maybe for the travel, too.

9. Her absolute favorite author in high school was Stephen King. One of the minor characters in Blaze has a seriously twisted backstory as a result of this. Laurie will never tell anyone what that backstory is unless she maybe meets Stephen King one day and he asks her about it.

10. She painted her first car hot pink when she was seventeen years old. Blaze gives her minivan a similar makeover in the book. This was in order to pay homage to that legendary car and not because Laurie is too lazy to make new stuff up. She genuinely loves making new stuff up. 


Bookie's Note: What a great way to kick start 2013 Debut of the Month! Laurie thank-you so much for agreeing to be a February Debutante! Out of all the jobs in the world, Toy Expert sounds like it has it's perks, I'm sure my brother would definitely agree :') I LOVE TO TRAVEL TOO and I'm not a whiner about jet lag either, I don't exactly loveeee it but hey, it's all gewd! When I get my car, I'm going to stick stickers all over it, not as badass as your idea but I guess I'm not that brave! :D

Remember to come back tomorrow to see the second half of Laurie's feature and for a giveaway! :)

Badass Bookie xx

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

GIVEAWAY: Notes from Ghost Town + The Butterfly Clues

Hey everybody! Today I have a cheeky giveaway for all of you! To celebrate the release of Notes from Ghost Town by Kate Ellison, Egmost USA is giving one lucky reader the chance to win a hardcover copy of Notes from Ghost Town as well as the new paperback copy of The Butterfly Clues (which also comes out today)!

(Goodreads) They say first love never dies...

From critically acclaimed author Kate Ellison comes a heartbreaking mystery of mental illness, unspoken love, and murder. When sixteen-year-old artist Olivia Tithe is visited by the ghost of her first love, Lucas Stern, it’s only through scattered images and notes left behind that she can unravel the mystery of his death.

There’s a catch: Olivia has gone colorblind, and there’s a good chance she’s losing her mind completely—just like her mother did. How else to explain seeing (and falling in love all over again with) someone who isn’t really there?

With the murder trial looming just nine days away, Olivia must follow her heart to the truth, no matter how painful. It’s the only way she can save herself.

Purchase - Barnes and Noble | Amazon | Indiebound 

Kate Ellison spent a lot of time as a child, in Baltimore, pretending to be things she wasn't: a twin, a telekinetic, a benevolent witch with a box full of magical stones, a spy, a soccer player. She trained as an actor in Chicago and has walked across the entire country of Spain. She is a painter and jewelry-maker, and has at least one artist friend who really does keep his true name a secret from the world. He told her, but don't ask her to tell you—she's not gonna do it. Kate lives in Brooklyn, New York. The Butterfly Clues is her first novel.

Check out Kate Ellison's Blog - HERE


Thanks to Egmont USA one lucky winner will receive (1) ONE hardcover copy of NOTES FROM GHOST TOWN and (1) ONE paperback copy of THE BUTTERFLY CLUES by Kate Ellison.

Rules -

- Ends 28th February 
- Optional Entries :
   * Follow Egmont USA on Facebook - HERE
   * Follow Kate Ellison on Facebook - HERE
   * Follow Me on Twitter +1 
   * Follow Egmont USA on Twitter +1
   * Tweeting Giveaway +1
   * Follow Badass Bookie via GFC/Linky or RSS +2

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Badass Bookie xx

Monday, February 11, 2013

The Handmaid's Tale

Review Time! A few months back I was contacted by a lovely publicist about reviewing books for The Folio Society, I've never actually heard of The Folio Society before but when I googled them, I came across this website and they have, no exaggeration, THE most beautiful books in the world. If you appreciate your classics, Folio Society is definitely a place to check out. All their books are finely made, beautifully bound, the artwork on the cover and between the pages are amazing and they all come in a lovely slipcase. Honestly, these are the most beautiful books I've ever seen. I'm so impressed that I'm raving! Thanks to the Folio Society for the review copy!

(Goodreads) Offred is a Handmaid in the Republic of Gilead. She may leave the home of the Commander and his wife once a day to walk to food markets whose signs are now pictures instead of words because women are no longer allowed to read. She must lie on her back once a month and pray that the Commander makes her pregnant, because in an age of declining fertility, Offred and the other Handmaids are valued only if their ovaries are viable. Offred can remember the years before, when she lived and made love with her husband, Luke; when she played with and protected her daughter; when she had a job, money of her own, and access to knowledge. But all of that is gone now...

The Short Story? - While the story itself is speculative fiction, Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale rings with the fear of what could be. A realistic take on a society where a government is corrupted by religion, where women are breeding machines and playthings and where life is plagued with the fear of retributions. This is definitely not YA and that comes through in the plot and the writing. Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale explores prevalent ideas and themes and takes them to an extreme.

The Long Story? -
This definitely isn't something I would normally pick up to read but I'm trying to break out of the YA bubble and become more cultured and where's a better place to start then The Handmaid's Tale? I thought this was a good book, different but good. It's written for a mature audience and even though it is fiction, there is truth behind the words. The world building was done very well, Atwood's Republic of Gilead was well created and I loved how Atwood's gives a play by play of how the United States slowly turned into this corrupted government that is powered by religion. At times I did think the novel was quite slow, there's a lot of thinking and reflecting and not a lot of action and movement which isn't what I would normally turn towards but there is something captivating about Offred's story. The ending leaves a lot of room for imagination and I like to think that Offred got a happy ending after all the hardships and pain she's gone through. I can see where people come from when they say this is a book about women's rights and feminism but ultimately about how religion is used to further power. Definitely a novel that stirs a lot of food for thought!

Some Pictures from Folio Society's Edition of The Handmaid's Tale

Offred as a character sums up the novel itself pretty well. A women in a society where the only value of women is in their ability to reproduce. She lost her family, her rights and her freedom and now lives her days as a plaything and breeding machine for powerful members of authority. It was a little hard to connect with Offred (name which literally means 'Of Fred', Fred being who owns her) at the start because she lacks personality. She almost seemed bland but as the novel progresses we start to see the rebellion and the anger brewing inside her. She dreams of small acts of rebellion and of change. Once I got to know Offred I thought she was a beautifully developed character. Atwood has managed to give her all these human qualities that make her realistic character such as maternal love and materialistic desire and the need for freedom. Overall, I thought Offred was a very symbolic character!

In the end, I didn't love The Handmaid's Tale, it's something that's completely out of my comfort zone but it was a very powerful book. It's one of those novels that even if you didn't love, it will make you think and it will stay with you for a long time. Poignantly beautiful, through Offred, readers see a society corrupted by religion and learn to appreciate freedom as it is. Atwood's novel of religious corruption, political injustice and women inequality offers readers honest speculative fiction!

What's it Worth? - Squeeze into the Budget

Badass Bookie xx

Tuesday, February 5, 2013


Review Time! Hooked by Liz Fichera is a 2013 YA Debut published by Harlequin Teen this month so if this sounds like your cup of tea make sure to head to your local bookstore and pick up a copy! There is nothing I like more than reading a frothy YA romance which wasn't quite what Hooked was but it was a great read nevertheless! You can purchase a copy of Hooked from Fishpond | The Nile | Booktopia. Thanks to Harlequin Teen for the review copy!

(Goodreads) When Native American Fredericka ‘Fred’ Oday is invited to become the only girl on the school’s golf team, she can’t say no. This is an opportunity to shine, win a scholarship and go to university, something no one in her family has done. 

But Fred’s presence on the team isn’t exactly welcome — especially not to rich golden boy Ryan Berenger, whose best friend was kicked off the team to make a spot for Fred.

But there’s no denying that things are happening between the girl with the killer swing and the boy with the killer smile...


The Short Story? - While the blurb leads readers to believe that Hooked is just another typical frothy YA romance about two completely different teenagers falling in love, it's little more than that. Fichera's debut explores the unexpected chemistry between two teenagers of different racial backgrounds and how racism and prejudice play a role in keeping them apart. Fichera's debut definitely leaves a lot of food for thought for readers. Great use of YA contemporary to deal with heavier issues! For fans of Miranda Kenneally's Catching Jordan and Stealing Parker.

The Long Story? - Hooked had more to offer than what I thought it did, it wasn't quite as romantic and frothy as I thought it would be but I think swapping froth for the exploration of more meaningful issues wasn't all that bad. I am disappointed with the "less frothiness" but not too much that I didn't enjoy the book. I think Fichera did a great job incorporating racial prejudice into Hooked, it wasn't an in your face kind of book,  it was actually done quite delicately. I liked how the racial prejudice tied in with the love story, I thought that it made the book a little more relatable to readers because love causes many problems but it's also the only thing that can overcome all those problems too. Hooked was also very educating, I definitely learned a little more about the american indian heritage through the book. I also loved the sportswoman aspect of the novel, there is something appealing about female athletes as protagonists. It's almost like "YEAH GIRL POWER". I think fans of Miranda Kenneally's books will enjoy Hooked!

Personally I thought the characterisation let the book down a little, like I always say characters can make or break the book and in this case unfortunately, it was the latter. They weren't necessarily bad characters but they weren't amazing either. I guess I just couldn't find enough common ground to connect with them. I wanted to like Fred and there were parts of the novel where I did but overall I would have liked to see Fred gain a little more confidence and to stand up for herself. She was kind of the girl who just took the bullying and that's not cool with me. Even if you're different, it doesn't make you helpless. Ryan was probably my biggest disappointment of the book, I really wanted to like him and I know that he's a great guy but he is such a follower! It frustrates me to see people who know something is not right yet they're too cowardly to stand up to it! Ryan, quite frankly, needed to man up and he did (eventually), I just wish he found his balls a little sooner. There was definitely a little work to be done in the characterisation department but the characters weren't unbearable so that's something!

I did enjoy Hooked but not as much as I hope I would. I would say that I "liked" the book but I didn't fall in "love" with it and that's partly because I'm more of a frothy contemporary girl and partly because I just couldn't connect with the characters. It's weird because there are A LOT of bloggers and reviewers who absolutely adored Hooked and sadly I'm not one of them! It wasn't "quite" my cup of tea but I'm sure this novel will appeal to some of you. Don't let my review dishearten you from picking it up because it was good, it just wasn't right for me! I still commend Fichera of her excellent plot though, that was pretty amazing! :)

What's it Worth? - Squeeze into the Budget/ Hand Over the Paycheck

Badass Bookie xx

Monday, February 4, 2013


Review Time! Venom by Fiona Paul is a 2012 YA Debut that was published by HarperCollins in December of last year! This cover probably threw you off because it's the AUS/NZ cover however this is the very same book as this one - CLICK ME. I've always had a thing for historical YA and I was super excited to dig into Venom, read on to hear about what I think! You can purchase a copy of Venom from Fishpond | The Nile | Booktopia | Bookworld Thanks to HarperCollins for the review copy!

(Goodreads) Cassandra Caravello is part of Venice′s wealthy elite. Her world is one of fabulous gowns, society parties and privilege, yet she longs for something more. While her fiancĂ© is away studying in Paris, she has a chance meeting with an artist called Falco. He is attractive, audacious...and highly unsuitable.

When Cass stumbles upon the body of a murdered woman - with a bloody X carved across her heart - she′s drawn into a dangerous world of secret societies, courtesans and killers. Falco is quick to offer his assistance, but then another body is found and Cass starts receiving death threats... Is Falco more involved than she imagined? And will she be able to stay true to her fiancĂ©, or succumb to her uncontrollable feelings for someone she′s not even sure she can trust?

The Short Story? - Definitely my favourite YA read of 2013 so far! Paul's debut novel is the perfect mix of mystery, thriller and romance. Deliciously dark and seductive, there is nothing more appealing than a romance set in renaissance Venice with a serial killer on the loose! Fantastic characters, good use of a love triangle (for once I approve!) and beautifully written. If you didn't think historical YA could be interesting, you are about to be proved wrong!

The Long Story? - There is nothing more appealing to a girl than a novel set in a romantic city and if it ain't Paris, Venice is definitely the next best thing. I absolutely adored Venom for multiple reason, Firstly the setting was very well done, I love Venice as it is but to make it renaissance Venice is just taking it to a whole new level. Add that to the culturally enriching plot filled with social hierarchy and the blossom of creativity, the whole book just gives off this strangely beautiful and seductive atmosphere. BUT WAIT, there more! Like the plot doesn't sound brilliant already, Paul comes up with the genius idea of throwing in a serial killer going around Venice and carving "x"s on girls chests, not to mention that the killer is on the hunt for our lovely protagonist Cassandra! Filled with mystery, suspense and one very delicious love affair, Venom is definitely a tantalising and spectacular read!

One of the most fascinating aspects of historical fiction is the use of social hierarchy. While we still do have a hierarchy of sorts, it's not as prominent as it was back in the 16th century Venice. I commend Paul on her excellent use of the social hierarchy to create 1) beautiful and realistic characters and 2) an utterly romantic but definitely forbidden romance. Cassandra was a great protagonist, while I'm not much of a fan for the name Cassandra (it's Venice, surely there are more romantic and unique names!), I am a huge fan of her personality. I liked how she didn't fit perfectly into society's expectations, I liked that she believed in love and I liked that she was brave and curious enough to investigate the murders. It was just very easy to connect with Cassandra, to grow to close to her as she grows to understand herself a little better. Falco was very charming and the whole "artist on the streets" aspect totally sold me! I did see the appeal in Falco and I thought his feelings for Cassandra were very real but I'm also very taken by Lucas who is very different from Falco yet charming in his own way. I don't know how Cassandra is going to choose between the two men because I'm having a hard time!

All in all, there isn't much not to like about Venom. Highly entertaining and periodically accurate ( I think, don't beat me with a stick if I'm wrong). Venom definitely has a little more to offer than your usual YA historical fiction. If you like novels about love and murders and Venice, Venom ticks all your checkpoints but also offers you so much more! I highly recommend this debut, Paul has truly outdid herself with this phenomenal start to a brand new series that I'm sure I will continue to love ! I can't wait for the sequel!

What's it Worth? - Hand Over the Paycheck/ Break Out the Piggybank

Badass Bookie xx

Sunday, February 3, 2013

In My Mailbox #61 (January Book Haul)

Hey guys, can you believe it's February already? :O Time is literally flying and before we know it, it's going to be 2014! I've got a book haul for you today, if you've been on my blog for a long time you'll know that I used to do book hauls every fortnight but I got really lazy so now it's a monthly book haul! In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi @ The Story Siren.

For Review - 

Night School Legacy - C.J. Daugherty
The Kill Order by James Dashner
Fearless by Cornelia Funke
Every Day by David Levithan
Disharmony by Leah Giarratano
Through the Ever Night by Veronica Rossi
The Prey by Andrew Fukuda
Prodigy by Marie Lu
Hooked by Liz Fichera

(Thanks to Hachette, Scholastic, Text Publishing, Penguin, Simon and Schuster and Harlequin Teen)

Bought -

Destined by Aprilynne Pike

What a great month! So many great books, I've recently finished reading Hooked and my review will be up Tuesday if any of you are interested in checking it out! :) I'm currently reading Prodigy and it's SO GOOD! Maybe even better than Legend! I can't wait to read Every Day and Through the Ever Night which I can hopefully include my February TBR! :D I also bought the last book in the Wings series by Aprilynne Pike, I love this series and hopefully I can finish it asap. 

Let me know what you got in the mail this week! Link me in the comments! :)

Badass Bookie xx