Thursday, 31 December 2009

10 Best Books I've Read This Year

We're at the end of 2009 now and I was thinking...I've read SO many books this year, at least over 100. So I thought I could make a list of my 10 Favourite Books I've read this year and list it here.
  1. Skate School Ice Princess by Kay Woodward
  2. Jinx by Meg Cabot
  3. Angel Cake by Cathy Cassidy
  4. The Declaration by Gemma Malley
  5. Split By A Kiss by Luisa Plaja
  6. Cookie by Jacqueline Wilson
  7. Avalon High by Meg Cabot
  8. The Resistance by Gemma Malley
  9. The Truth About Josie Green by Belinda Hollyer*
  10. The Borrowers by Mary Norton
* Interview with Belinda Hollyer coming soon!

Saturday, 19 December 2009

Christmas Giveaway!

I have 1 copy of 'Fallen' by Lauren Kate up for grabs! To enter follow the instructions below...
  • Follow this blog
  • Comment saying why you want this book
  • Email me using my email address at the bottom of the post with your name and address
NOTE: The winner won't receive Fallen until just after Christmas since the Christmas Post deadline for first class parcels had gone already. Sorry!

To choose the winner, I'll give every comment a number i.e first comment is number 1, second comment is number 2 etc. I'll pick a number out of a hat and then post saying who the winner is and in case the winner doesn't see the post, I'll email them too. :-)

This competition is for people in Europe only, sorry!

The closing date is 3rd January. GOOD LUCK!

Email your details to:

Thank you to Luisa Plaja for advertising this competition on Chicklish!


Thursday, 10 December 2009

Would You Rather by Chris Higgins

Title: Would You Rather?
Author: Chris Higgins
Published by: Hodder Children's Books
Publication date: 1st October 2009
Pages: 272
Genres: Young Adult
Format: Paperback
Source: Bought.

Flick loves to play Would you Rather? with her friends: Daddy or chips? Boyfriend or career? Snog or marry?

Life is all about the choices you make, and all around her Flick watches her family grapple with life-altering decisions.

When Flick's dad discovers that he's adopted, so begins a mystery that leads him to a long lost secret at the very heart of their family—one that leads back to a choice that was made many years ago, and once uncovered, will rock Flick's world.

Life is all about the choices you make, and all around her Flick watches her family grapple with life-altering decisions.

When Flick's dad discovers that he's adopted, so begins a mystery that leads him to a long lost secret at the very heart of their family—one that leads back to a choice that was made many years ago, and once uncovered, will rock Flick's world.
Flick's Mum wants to go abroad on holiday. Sounds normal, but this is actually where the trouble begins and family secrets are revealed. Flick's Dad doesn't have a passport, so he goes to his parents' house to get his birth certificate to apply for a passport while Flick is in the garden with her Grandad. A while later her Dad comes out in a strange mood and won't even make eye contact with his parents.

Meanwhile, on the way to London on the train, Flick finds a boy to chat to. He seems nice and they even eat together on the train. But somehow, all these things are connected: Mum wanting to go on holiday, Dad acting strange, Flick making friends with a boy... I really didn't expect what happened at the end! It was really surprising.

Everyone who likes a bit of a mystery should read this book. The ending was fantastic, although a little confusing.

I give this book 4/5, because although it's a very good plot and the characters are really funny, it does get a bit confusing at times! I did enjoy it though. My favourite character was the main character Flick because she was funny and it made me laugh the way she handled embarrassing situations.

Monday, 7 December 2009

Cathy Cassidy's DS Game

Cathy Cassidy now has her very own Nintendo DS Game! You can see character profiles, read her books, and tons more! Here are some of the the other features.

  • Six of the best: Includes six whole books: Angel Cake, Scarlett, Shine on Daizy Star, Ginger Snaps, Sundae Girl and Driftwood.
  • Magic book: Special multimedia hyperlinks let you access character information, images and sounds from each book as you read.
  • Hidden extras: Unlock extra content and secrets by searching each page for hidden images of animals, flowers, fruit and stars.
  • Progress tracker: Parents can track exactly how much kids have read while special quizzes test to see how much they've taken in.
  • Share and learn: Share sample chapters with a friend via the wireless connection and you can unlock extra bonus content for yourself.
Doesn't that sound cool? That's definitely going on my Christmas list! You can buy it from Amazon HERE.

Saturday, 5 December 2009

Interview with author Luisa Plaja!

When writing a new book, how do you decide what to call it?
I usually think of a title when I first dream up an idea for a novel. It's a working title, though, and it changes as I write. Having said that, "Extreme Kissing" was my original title and it never changed, and "Swapped by a Kiss" was named after "Split by a Kiss" so it couldn't really be called anything else!

If you're walking down a street, or in a supermarket, do people come up to you and ask you to sign something?
Hee hee, that would be great! No, that's never happened, but I have stood near people admiring my books in shops! It's an amazing feeling. I've only once admitted who I am when this has happened, and that was when the girl was about to buy my book. I offered to sign it for her and she accepted. I think she was a bit surprised but she seemed happy, too!

Do you get to decide what the cover of your books look like, or does your publisher/illustrator do that?
My publishers do that, although they do consult me during the process. They hire illustrators and have designers, too.

When your books are in the shops, do you read them and think 'Oh I wish I'd changed that bit...' etc?
Yes, definitely! I never feel like I've finished a book. It's strange to have to stop changing things, in fact - it feels like that moment at the end of an exam when you're told to put your pen down, and you're thinking, "No, please, just one more little change!"

Do you have any advice for people wanting to become an author?
Read a lot of books you enjoy and don't worry about what other people think of your choices. Then write a book you want to read, and enjoy that too.

If you could live with one of your characters, who would it be and why?
That's a tough question! I love all my characters and I have lived with them all, really, in the sense of going through stages when I think about them constantly! I tend to get really fond of the more mixed-up and troubled characters I write about, like Rachel in Split by a Kiss/Swapped by a Kiss and Carlotta in Extreme Kissing, so I think I'd like to give them a home and try to chat to them. I bet they wouldn't listen to me, though.

And finally, the last question, can you tell us a bit about your next book?
Sure! Swapped by a Kiss is a follow-up to Split by a Kiss, but the main character this time is Rachel. It's the summer after the end of Split by a Kiss and the American Rachel travels to England to surprise her boyfriend at a music festival - but she's the one who gets the surprise. She catches him kissing their friend Jo and she's so upset that she runs off, wishing she was Jo instead of herself. The next thing she knows, she's back with David, and she IS Jo...

Thank you very much, Luisa!
Thank YOU, Amber!

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Bindi Babes by Narinder Dhami

Title: Bindi Babes
Author: Narinder Dhami
Published by: Corgi Children's
Publication date: 1st August 2003
Pages: 192
Genres: Young Adult
Format: Paperback
Source: Bought

Meet Amber, Jazz and Geena, the coolest chicks on the block.

These girls have been through some tough times, but now that they've got their perfect world totally sorted, the one fashion accessory they don't need is an interfering live-in auntie trying to cramp their style.

Bring on the collective brainpower of the Bindi Babes! Nothing in life, not even a formidable Auntie-Ji, can stop these sisters...can it?

Amber, Geena and Jazz are three sisters. Their Mum has died, so their Dad looks after them. They all get what they want, as they know how to get around him - until Auntie arrives from India! They decide that the best way to stop Auntie interfering in their lives is to arrange a marriage for her, possibly to one of their teachers. But will their seemingly unstoppable plan work?

This book is the best out of the Babes series, I highly recommend it to anyone who absolutely loves Narinder Dhami books! It's a fun plot and the sisters all had different personalities which was great as sometimes in books when you get characters who are related, they can all merge together a bit if they are too similar.

It had all the things a brilliant book needs. Happy parts, sad parts, funny parts and parts that are especially girly! My favourite part in the book was the ending, but I won't say anything about that - I don't do spoilers! - so you'll have to buy the book yourself to find out.