Dark Lover by J.R.Ward | Book Review

Rating: 2/5

Favourite Quote: “Perfect date material, she thought. A vampire with the social equivalent of road rage.”

Review: I really, really wanted to love this book (mainly because Sarah J Maas loves it). But I just found it so very boring.

Dark Lover follows Beth, who is a journalist living in New York. She meets Wrath, a vampire king, and his band of vampire brothers. Oh and there’s a cop, Butch, who gets all involved because he likes Beth. And then basically there’s these other pale fellas who half heartedly hunt vampires. That’s it. Nothing else to the story really.

I’ll admit I kind of liked Beth. She didn’t allow anyone to boss her about. Wrath though, I did not like him one bit! I went in hoping he’d be a bit like Eric Northman from True Blood, but nope. Wrath was clingy and worshipped Beth way too much too quickly.

The other vampire brothers had no defining personality traits so it was impossible to remember who was who and who looked like what. The exception being Zsadist, who was always angry and fed up and extra scary (ish). And Zsadist has left me kind of tempted to skip to his book just to see what’s up with him.

Overall a light but rather dull read. I’m being kind in this review, even though I’ve given it 2 stars, because I get the feeling I would have enjoyed this series a bit (well a tiny bit) more back when I was first watching/reading True Blood and The Vampire Diaries. But as someone who is very much into fantasy and strong female leads at the moment this just isn’t what I want to read right now.

So if you’re in the same phase as me I’d not bother with the Black Dagger Brotherhood series. But if you’re still loving vampires then 100% give it a go!

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Unpopular Opinions Tag

Firstly, I need to apologise for being so inactive for most of November! I’m here now though and I thought what better way to jump back in to blogging than by revealing some of my unpopular opinions. Because it’s always fun to share those heh heh. But really this tag is one of my favourites to read on other people’s blogs because I feel like opinions that differ from your own are far more interesting to hear about than those that you agree with. So here’s mine, hope you enjoy!

1) A Popular Book Or Series That You Didn’t Like

I’m so tempted to say Uprooted by Naomi Novik but I’ve already moaned about that book quite a bit on here and my bookstagram. So I’ll choose…Delirium by Lauren Oliver. Remember how popular this series was back in 2012?! So many people adored it and it still has an average rating of 4.0 on goodreads now. No idea how?! It was honestly one of the most slow and boring books I’ve ever read. And so obviously I didn’t continue with the rest of the series.

Oh but wasn’t there rumours of a tv series at one point though? And it was going to star Emma Roberts?

2) A Popular Book Or Series That Everyone Else Seems To Hate But You Love

Ok, so looking through the books that I’ve rated 5 stars on goodreads, the least popular out of them is Austenland and Midnight In Austenland by Shannon Hale. I loved both of these books and I REALLY hope Shannon writes more. They’re just fun, fast paced and light reads. Nothing too serious. And I’m fascinated by the Pride and Prejudice era so throwing some modern people into this time amuses me greatly.

3) A Love Triangle Where The Main Character Ended Up With The Person You Did NOT Want Them To End Up With

SPOILERS FOR EMPIRE OF STORMS… 

Manon and Elide! And I know, I know, they were never even close to being a couple but the way Manon is so protective of Elide and doesn’t like Lorcan is so cute. But as that’s clearly not happening I can accept that Elide and Lorcan were lovely together.

However I refuse to accept Manon and Dorian being together. And as much as I like Dorian he’s just not right for Manon. Manon is so scary and strong and a natural leader and he just kind of dulls that. Which I did not like.

4) A Popular Book Genre That You Hardly Reach For

I’m going to have to say young adult contemporary. I’ve only read a handful and for the most part they’ve all lacked well developed, likeable characters. And usually the plot is non existent. I did like Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour by Morgan Matson and The Fault In Our Stars by John Green though!

5) A Popular Or Beloved Character That You Do Not Like

Tyrion from Game Of Thrones. Of course I still think he’s one of the most interesting characters in the ASOIAF series and he’s witty and clever. It’s just I can’t get over some of the things he’s done in the book/tv series. And whilst I like tv series Tyrion better than book series Tyrion, I have to say I wish book series Tyrion especially would just die.

6) A Popular Author You Can’t Seem To Get Into

Leigh Bardugo. I suffered through Six of Crows and I plan on making myself suffer through Crooked Kingdom very soon (though I’m hoping I don’t suffer at all of course and that I end up loving it). And why even bother? I hear you ask. Well SoC was left on a cliffhanger and now I feel the need to know how everything turns out. So congrats Leigh you got me! I don’t plan on reading any of her other books though. For now anyway.

7) A Popular Book Trope You’re Tired Of Seeing

Easily the way young female protagonists are always ignored/pushed aside/left behind simply because they’re “little girls”. I’m pretty sure this happened in both The Hunger Games series and the Divergent series. And authors I get it. You’re setting her up to prove them wrong but it still annoys me that she isn’t listened to and gets no respect until she does something outstanding. Even in Throne Of Glass, where Celaena is the best/most deadly assassin around, the king still makes snide remarks about her being female and emotional or something! Blurghh.

8) A Popular Series That You Have No Interest In Reading

The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare. I think I just missed the bandwagon with this one. And I do own the first book and I’ve tried to read it a couple times but that club scene is so long and boring! I can never get past it. Then I watched the film and thought “yawn”. Though I hear the new tv series is pretty good so maybe if I watch that it will jump start my interest?!

9) “The Book Is Always Better Than The Movie”. But Which Movie Or Tv Show Do You Like More Than The Book?

This question is so easy! The Vampire Diaries! I think I’ve read at least 8 or 9 books in the series but the tv show is just 100 times more interesting, exciting and hot (I don’t blame Elena not being able to pick between Damon and Stefan…). I really need to get Netflix asap though and catch up. I think I’m two seasons behind now and it’s killing me not knowing what’s going on.

Oh and also The Lord of the Rings trilogy would be my second pick. I adored all three films when they came out but I could not get through the books. I think I read half of The Fellowship of the Ring and gave up. Tolkien was just describing everything in too much detail for my liking. I do plan on giving them a go again one day though. Perhaps when I’m in a retirement home and I’ve read everything else…

So there you have it! What’s an unpopular opinion you have?

Oh and if you’d like to be tagged consider yourself tagged!

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My Top 10 Favourite Horror Films

So I thought I’d use the fact that it’s Halloween as an excuse to talk about my favourite film genre…Horror! And according to IMDB I’ve seen hundreds of horror films so I really struggled to get this list down to just 10. Though I admit most of the horror films I’ve seen were a bit rubbish but I guess that’s what makes them fun to watch, right? But anyway all of the following I gave 10/10 and would highly recommend you check them out.

1) The Divide (2011)

| Survivors of a nuclear attack are grouped together for days in the basement of their apartment building, where fear and dwindling supplies wear away at their dynamic. |

Now The Divide is not only my favourite horror film ever, but also one of my all time favourite films of any genre, ever! It’s quite a hard watch at times because it’s not really a typical post apocalyptic film about survival. It’s more about how humans could react to being put in such a stressful situation where they all have to live together in a small space.

Also Milo Ventimiglia and Michael Eklund are terrifying in this. As the days go on they escalate from being typical boisterous lads to taking control of all the food and being incredibly cruel (also one of them starts wearing a dress randomly which is off putting). Exactly the type of guys you would not want to be locked in a basement with! 

2) The Descent 1 & 2 (2005/2009)

| A caving expedition goes horribly wrong, as the explorers become trapped and ultimately pursued by a strange breed of predators. |

Ok so I know I’m cheating by considering both of these as one but I could not choose between them! Also I’ve just realised both are also about people being trapped together in a small space, like The Divide…this might say something about me?

This time though it’s not the humans which are scary but the things living in the dark and tight spaces of a cave. And the tension does not let up for the entire film. We meet the nice group of girls who are supporting a friend suffering after a family tragedy, and then bam!, we’re stuck in the dark. If you ever had the urge to go caving this’ll put an end to that straight away!

3) Planet Terror (2007)

| After an experimental bio-weapon is released, turning thousands into zombie-like creatures, it’s up to a rag-tag group of survivors to stop the infected and those behind its release. |

Ok so this film should not be taken seriously. It’s very dark and grimy, but also very (very!) cheesy. I mean Rose McGowan, who plays Cherry Darling, has a machine gun where her lower left leg should be. And yes, you read that right. A machine gun for a leg!

If you like The Walking Dead but wish it was faster paced and more gory and crazy. Then Planet Terror is for you!

4) [Rec] 1 & 2 (2007/2009)

| A television reporter and cameraman follow emergency workers into a dark apartment building and are quickly locked inside with something terrifying. |

Firstly, I need to say that you SHOULD NOT watch Quarantine (the remake) before you watch [Rec]. [Rec] is by far the superior horror film and watching the remake first will ruin the surprises…

And also the start might make you think “meh” but just wait until the characters get into the apartment building. Because from the moment they enter the suspense is immediately ramped up and up over the next hour until it’s just all out terror.

Oh and the fact it’s in Spanish actually makes it seem more claustrophobic to me. And I think other non Spanish speakers will feel the same. Then of course it’s filmed in the “found footage” style which just makes the whole film feel very real. And very scary!

5) 30 Days Of Night (2007)

| After an Alaskan town is plunged into darkness for a month, it is attacked by a bloodthirsty gang of vampires. |

The vampires in this are the most terrifying monsters from any movie I’ve ever seen! They’re exactly what I think Vampires should be. Ugly, cruel, intelligent, no remorse, no empathy. They play with their food. Use humans as bait to get others to come out of hiding. Just, terrifying.

Oh and don’t watch the sequel, which is bad. Watch the one with Danny Huston (American Horror Story fans will know how good he is at being scary!) who plays the “head” vampire. And I don’t even know how to get across how chilling he is. He doesn’t speak English accept to say “no god” one time. He has a whole mouth full of pointed and yellow teeth. And the nails!

Just watch it!

6) Them (Ils) (2006)

| Lucas and Clementine live peacefully in their isolated country house, but one night they wake up to a strange noise… they’re not alone… and a group of hooded assailants begin to terrorize them throughout the night. |

This film will have you guessing what genre you’re even watching, it’s that good. Are the “hooded assailants” ghosts/aliens? Are they a group of men? Do they know these people? Or are they something else entirely? What do they want? And when it is all revealed in the final scene you will be shocked! I won’t say anything else because it’s really much more fun (and terrifying) going into this film not knowing anything.

7) You’re Next (2011)

| When the Davison family comes under attack during their wedding anniversary getaway, the gang of mysterious killers soon learns that one of the victims harbours a secret talent for fighting back. |

Anyone else love it when the victim becomes the aggressor? Because it’s my absolute favourite thing to see in a horror film. And honestly it doesn’t happen that much. Sure a victim might fight to survive but in You’re Next she actually goes out of her way to pick off the killers. And in incredibly creative ways too!

And if you like this I would also recommend Shut In (2015) which is another home invasion horror where the victim is not as weak as she first seems. She suffers from agoraphobia which means she can’t leave the house so you sort of think well she’s done for then. But there’s a twist!

So definitely check both of these out!

8) Hush (2016)

| A deaf writer who retreated into the woods to live a solitary life must fight for her life in silence when a masked killer appears at her window. |

Another home invasion horror film but this one is a bit different because the victim is deaf! Which I thought put an interesting twist on the usual thing of running round a house trying to get away from the killer. Because obviously a deaf woman can’t hear what’s going on.

And Kate Siegal, who plays the lead, is fantastic. You really feel for her. Especially when she doesn’t realise that the man is watching her at times. At one point she’s trying to load a crossbow but isn’t strong enough and he’s just looking through the window at her. Really creepy.

Still doesn’t put me off wanting my own little house in the woods though!

9) House Of Wax (2005)

| A group of unwitting teens are stranded near a strange wax museum and soon must fight to survive and keep from becoming the next exhibit. |

Now this is the film that my friends and I used to watch all the time as teenagers. We loved it! And after watching it again recently I still think it’s pretty terrifying. Like people being made into wax figures, whilst alive, is probably as scary as it gets!

Plus a certain Paris Hilton scene is fantastic! If you’ve seen House of Wax you’ll know what I’m talking about. And if you watched this in 2005 you will know how annoying Paris Hilton was in real life, at the time, so will have enjoyed it 100x more haha.

10) The Skeleton Key (2005)

| A hospice nurse working at a spooky New Orleans plantation home finds herself entangled in a mystery involving the house’s dark past. |

My favourite thing about this film is probably the setting. The huge plantation house is incredibly creepy! And straight away you know something isn’t right about it. Something horrible is going on.

Oh and the twist is probably the most haunting twist in a horror film, ever! Seriously sometimes I’ll just randomly think about it and get the heebie jeebies. Definitely worth watching all the way through just to find out what the hell’s going on. Even if Kate Hudson is a bit rubbish.

Have you seen any of these? What did you think? Also I’d love to know what your favourite horror film ever is? I’m always looking for new ones to check out!

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You by Caroline Kepnes | Book Review

Image result for you caroline kepnes

Rating: 3/5

Favourite Quote: “The only thing crueler than a cage so small that a bird can’t fly is a cage so large that a bird thinks it can fly.”  

Review: This book was like nothing I’ve ever read before. It was frustrating, repetitive at times and a little dull. But overall I can’t deny that it was, to quote You back at itself, “different, hot”.

Joe Goldberg, our protagonist and stalker, is actually the one described as “different, hot” in the book. But really he’s neither. He works in a bookshop. He’s not interesting. He’s bland. And he’s oblivious.

I started to realise early on that Joe lives his life outside of himself, if that even makes sense. His whole internal monologue is him thinking about other people. Judging them and making up excuses for their actions. He’s not self aware at all.

Beck, the writer who is being stalked by Joe, on the other hand lives entirely within herself. She only thinks of herself and what she can get out of people and how they make her feel. She’s completely self absorbed.

Both Joe and Beck’s behaviour gets more annoying as the book goes on. All the lying and cheating and stalking and killing couldn’t make them interesting people to me. In fact, I felt sad for them. They obviously suffer from various mental illnesses.

Though I’m not saying any of the above makes the book bad. The characters are not interesting (to me) but the overall storyline is. I found it fascinating how Joe would use email, Facebook and Twitter to stalk Beck and also to cover his tracks. It really highlighted the power of social media to me. And how one tweet, that kind of sounds like something you would write, will make everyone think you’re ok. A scary thought.

Also You highlighted how manipulative people can be. Even, perhaps unintentionally, to those they’ve just met. Another scary thought.

So really You is a bit like watching some weird reality tv show. It’s not amazing or anything but it reveals a lot about humanity. And it is fun because it’s not you dealing with all this rubbish, it’s someone else.

And as with most books I rate 3/5 I found that the last several chapters were some of the best of the whole story. Which means I’m left wanting more. And *SPOILER* I’m definitely intrigued to know about Joe’s new obsession in the next book which Caroline has described as “every bit as terrifying…”.

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The Versatile Blogger Award

Thank you so much for nominating me, Jasmine! These tags and awards are so much fun to do! And Jasmine has an awesome book blog over at How Useful Is It so please check her out and give her a follow.

Ok first here’s the boring bit, the rules…

Rules:

– Show the award on your blog
– Thank the person that has nominated you
– Share 7 random facts about yourself
– Nominate a few blogs
– Link your nominees

7 Random Facts About Me:

1) I can’t get enough of chocolate and cakes and pastries. Oh and ice cream! Every day I have to have something sweet otherwise I will be very grumpy! (Not even kidding I have sweet related hangry outbursts all the time haha)

2) Unlike most bookstagrammers and book bloggers I do not have a book buying problem. I’m pretty good at only buying one or two books at a time and then reading them. The only exception is the library where I’ll get out 8 books and return half of them unread (whoops).

3) Halloween and Autumn make September, October and November my favourite months of the year. I just love being able to wear cosy jumpers and coats. And it rains more often so I don’t feel guilty about staying inside reading. And I love that it gets darker earlier. Oh and horror films are more fun at this time of the year!

4) I annoy everyone I’m out with whenever I go. Not for a really terrible reason though haha. It’s because I like taking hundreds of photos of everything so I’ll slow the whole day down. I’ll come back from a simple walk on the beach with hundreds of photos. I guess I should make an instagram or something for them?

5) I don’t wear much make up. Just mascara and a bit of concealer to cover any spots. I definitely do not get this trend for putting highlighter, blusher AND bronzer all on your cheeks?!

6) My favourite Disney films are Peter Pan and Beauty and the Beast. I’ve watched them both more times than I can count and look for any books or movies that “retell” either story. I think the tv show Once Upon A Time has a Peter Pan and Hook storyline right? I need to get on that show already!

7) Out of all the social media sites I use Instagram is easily the most fun for me! For some reason it’s a really positive place and I rarely see nasty arguments or offensive comments. Amongst the book community anyway. Not sure what goes on in the wider Instagram world!

And finally I must pass on this award!

Nominated Blogs:

A Lovelorn Virgo
Book Ends And Endings
Inside My Minds

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My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick | Book Review

Image result for my life next door

Rating: 2/5

Favourite Quote: “Maybe if I can just sleep for a hundred years, I’ll wake up in a better story.”

Review: So this book angered me. A lot. Nothing happens until page 320. Before that it’s just about a 17 year old girl who works two jobs, but has a trust fund, and her relationships with her grouchy best friend and the hot boy next door.

Then after page 320 we get the drama. And this is the part that really angered me! Because something awful happens and no one does the right thing. No. One. Instead someone gets hurt and someone gets blackmailed and a whole family is left to suffer and yet not a single person involved does the right thing. And I find it hard to believe that in this case people would act in this way.

*SPOILERS START HERE*

Oh and we never get to find out what was up with the best friend. It was hinted at that she was cheating by getting her brother to write her essays and speeches and it was shown that she was cheating in exams. And yet nothing happens! Nothing is confirmed. It was made out to be one of the main story lines and yet Nan, the best friend, just suddenly decides being friends with Sam, the main character, is “too much work”. What?! No explanation. Nothing. And Nan never appears again.

It was nice to see Tim, Nan’s twin brother (the one who does Nan’s school work) who was struggling with drink and drugs, get better though. His character developed a lot and he went from a nasty, spiteful guy to the type that brings ice cream round to the kids he babysits. This story line was one of the only reasons I gave this book a 2 star rating and not a 1 star.

The only other reason it got a 2 star rating was because I liked it when Sam finally stands up to her mother, towards the end of the book, and starts trying to make things right. Because before this Sam just let everyone walk all over her. She let Tim steal money from her and drive drunk and just stands there whilst Nan criticises her for being too rich and beautiful. But then finally she speaks up! And about the thing that really mattered.

*SPOILERS END HERE*

Overall an incredibly slow and frustrating plot with very angering characters. I didn’t like the chain of events at all. And I didn’t like any of the characters. And I didn’t like that one of the plot lines, the state of Nan and Sam’s friendship, is not resolved or even explained.

Basically I wasn’t impressed. It gets a 2 star rating because it’s not the worst thing I’ve ever read and it does illustrate how out of control an accident can get if you don’t tell the truth. But even with these couple of good points I would not recommend My Life Next Door and I won’t be continuing with this series any time soon.

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Sarah J Maas Book Tag

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So for this weeks Friday post I thought I’d do a fun little Sarah J Maas themed book tag that I saw going round on Instagram. And fyi choosing an answer for some of these questions nearly killed me!

1) Dorian Or Rowan

Now this one depends on what the context is. For Aelin, I’d choose Rowan, because they’re both powerful and they’re a good fit personality wise as well. But if I was choosing which one for myself, and if I didn’t have any magic and I was mortal, I’d choose lovely Dorian.

2) Rhysand Or Dorian

Oh 100% Rhysand. I swear there is not a day that goes by without me thinking of Rhys. He is actual perfection.

3) Moon Or Sun

Easily the beautiful moon. I love being up at night when it’s peaceful and quiet and I can look up at the moon and stars. And I would actually go so far as to say I strongly dislike the sun. You can’t look at it and it gets in your eyes when you’re in the car and it makes me feel too hot and uncomfortable in the summer!

4) Saturday Or Sunday

Hmm both are lovely but I’ll go with…Sunday. There just seems to be less pressure to be productive on a Sunday.

5) Book Or Film

This is actually a surprisingly hard question for me! Because when I think of Harry Potter and Divergent, I prefer the books. But when I think of The Lord of the Rings and The Perks of Being a Wallflower, I prefer the films. Buttt I guess overall I prefer more books to their film adaptions.

6) Fireplace Or Radiator 

Radiator. Just because I can get lost in my book and I don’t have to worry about burning the house down.

7) Kill Maeve Or Tamlin

Can it not be both?!?!? No. Ok then I guess I would kill Maeve because of what she did in Empire of Storms. She’s disgustingly cruel!

8) Never Read ACOTAR 3 Or TOG 6

Never read TOG 6. I NEED ACOTAR 3 and more of Feyre and Rhys and Cassian and Nesta and Mor and Azriel and Amren and Elaine. It’s killing me to have to wait till May 2017 as it is so if I was never going to read it I’m pretty sure I’d die instantly.

9) Sapphire Or Violet Eyes

For on myself I’d go for sapphire eyes. But if they’re on another person I’d choose violet. Because Rhysand.

10) Manon Or Lysandra

Manon. As much as I love Lysandra and how strong and amazing she is…I just want to be Manon. Like I want the iron teeth and nails and I want Abraxos and to be immortal and scary but beautiful and yeah, I want to be Manon.

People I tag to do this next are:

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