The Empress Chronicles by Suzy Vitello

October 30, 2014

Published by Diversion Books

The Empress Chronicles by Suzy Vitello
Publication Date: September 4th 2014
Buy the Book:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo
In this dazzling first book in the EMPRESS CHRONICLES series by the author of THE MOMENT BEFORE, one courageous girl seeks keys to the past to unlock the future…

When city girl Liz is banished to a rural goat farm on the outskirts of Portland, the 15-year-old feels her life spiraling out of control. She can’t connect to her father or his young girlfriend, and past trauma adds to her sense of upheaval. The only person who seems to keep her sane is a troubled boy who is fighting his own demons.  But all of this changes in one historical instant.

One-hundred fifty years earlier, Elisabeth of Bavaria has troubles of her own. Her childhood is coming to a crashing end, and her destiny is written in the form of a soothsaying locket that has the ability to predict true love. But evil is afoot in the form of a wicked enchantress who connives to wield the power of the locket for her own destructive ends.

When Liz finds a timeworn diary, and within it a locket, she discovers the secrets and desires of the young Bavarian princess who will one day grow up to be the legendary Empress of Austria. It is in the pages of the diary that these two heroines will meet, and it is through their interwoven story that Liz will discover she has the power to rewrite history—including her own…

Readers of books like Rachel Harris’s MY SUPER SWEET SIXTEENTH CENTURY will love THE EMPRESS CHRONICLES

The Short
The Empress Chronicles is a fun and promising start to a new series. This first book really builds up towards the end. I am certainly intrigued, however I feel like the ending was cut short a little too abruptly. I would have loved to have been introduced to some of that excitement a little earlier.

The two main characters, Liz and Sisi, have very distinct voices, which worked wonderfully for the dual points of view. Their development throughout the story was wonderfully executed, and I loved getting to know the two characters.

The Long

Nina Lemay About the Author
Suzy Vitello is a proud founding member of a critique group recently dubbed The Hottest Writing Group in Portland, and her short stories have won fellowships and prizes (including the Atlantic Monthly Student Writing Award, and an Oregon Literary Arts Fellowship). | | |

The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan

October 29, 2014

I received this book for free from Bookworld in exchange for an honest review.

The Narrow Road by Richard Flanagan
Series: n/a

Released: September 3rd 2013
Pages: 467
Source: Bookworld
Buy it: The Book Depository | Bookworld
     - Both have free shipping worldwide

Richard Flanagan's story — of Dorrigo Evans, an Australian doctor haunted by a love affair with his uncle's wife — journeys from the caves of Tasmanian trappers in the early twentieth century to a crumbling pre-war beachside hotel, from a Thai jungle prison to a Japanese snow festival, from the Changi gallows to a chance meeting of lovers on the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

Taking its title from 17th-century haiku poet Basho's travel journal, The Narrow Road To The Deep North is about the impossibility of love. At its heart is one day in a Japanese slave labour camp in August 1943. As the day builds to its horrific climax, Dorrigo Evans battles and fails in his quest to save the lives of his fellow POWs, a man is killed for no reason, and a love story unfolds.

The Short
This book... Where do I even start?

The Narrow Road to the Deep North had such a profound impact on me. I often had to stop mid-sentence and contemplate everything; this book, people, life. I didn't even realise at first that it had drawn me in so deeply, but when I finished I was catatonic.

Richard Flanagan is extremely talented. He has such a way with words - his style is so unassuming, but then I find myself needing to take a step back from the book and just breathe for a moment. Every single character is illustrated so vividly, and in such a short amount of time, that I found myself empathising with people that seem to have no sense of humanity.

Stunning. Absolutely stunning. One of the best books I have read.

The Long

The Blood of Olympus Giveaway | AUS Only

October 27, 2014

In celebration of YA Week at Bookworld, I am giving away a SIGNED copy of The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan & a sign poster! If you would like to enter, just fill out the Rafflecopter form below, but first a few requirements:
- Must be an Australian resident
- Must be 18+ or 13+ with parental consent
- The winner's email address will be forwarded to Bookworld
a Rafflecopter giveaway

September Wrap Up | 2014

October 4, 2014

Another good month of reading, but I wasn't able to read as much as I needed to :( Hopefully I can catch up in October!


The Mercenary Sea by Kel Symons & Mathew Reynolds
- The Iron Trial by Holly Black & Cassandra Clare (video review)
- Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys (video review)
- We Were Liars by E. Lockhart (video review)

Additions to Reading Challenges
The Mercenary Sea - Manga/Graphic Novel Challenge
Adventure Time: Candy Capers - Manga/Graphic Novel Challenge

Books Acquired:
- Weird Things Customers Say In Bookshops by Jen Campbell
- More Weird Things Customers Say In Bookshops by Jen Campbell
- Whispers of the Fallen by J.D. Netto
- Rebellion by J.D. Netto
- The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne M Valente
- You by Austin Grossman
- Fables: Legends of Exile by Bill Willingham
- Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
- The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
- The Hundred Year Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson
- The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
- Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

Books Read:
- Stardust by Neil Gaiman
- Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein
- The Mercenary Sea by Kel Symons & Mathew Reynolds
- The Iron Trial by Holly Black & Cassandra Clare
- Adventure Time: Candy Capers by Yuko Ota
- Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout
- Talon by Julia Kagawa

/In Progress/
- Fairy Tales from the Brothers Grimm
Inkdeath by Cornelia Funke
- Furies of Calderon by Jim Butcher
- Seraphina by Rachel Hartman
- The Other Side of Dawn by John Marsden
- The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan

October TBR:
- The Fire Eaters by David Almond
- Mortal Engines by Philip Reeve
- The Red Shoe by Ursula Dubosarsky
- Vicious by V.E. Schwab
- The Empire Chronicles by Suzy Vitello


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