Blog Tour: Miss Marley by Vanessa Lafaye

img_6760.jpgSynopsis from Goodreads

Before A Christmas Carol there was… Miss Marley

A seasonal tale of kindness and goodwill.
Orphans Clara and Jacob Marley live by their wits, scavenging for scraps in the poorest alleyways of London, in the shadow of the workhouse. Every night, Jake promises his little sister ‘tomorrow will be better’ and when the chance to escape poverty comes their way, he seizes it despite the terrible price.

And so Jacob Marley is set on a path that leads to his infamous partnership with Ebenezer Scrooge. As Jacob builds a fortress of wealth to keep the world out, only Clara can warn him of the hideous fate that awaits him if he refuses to let love and kindness into his heart…

In Miss Marley, Vanessa Lafaye weaves a spellbinding Dickensian tale of ghosts, goodwill and hope – a perfect prequel to A Christmas Carol.

Mini-Review

I’m a big fan of Charles Dickens, so when offered the chance to review Miss Marley which is set in Dickens A Christmas Carol I just couldn’t say no.

The idea of picking up a character from a beloved classic such as A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens and write their story, it can only be done by someone with some guts. This is the kind of thing that can go very wrong, but in this case it went the complete opposite way.

The way that Vanessa Lafaye decided to tell Jacob Marley’s story through the eyes of her own character – his sister Clara Belle Marley – was a stroke of genius. This decision is what gave Lafaye the freedom she needed to explore their story, while still being truthful to Dickens creation.

I had no idea until after I finished reading, that the author Vanessa Lafaye has unfortunately passed away before finishing writing Miss Marley. Her good friend and writing partner Rebecca Mascull whom shared the same love for Dickens as Lafaye, took upon the task of finishing the book for her. While reading the novella, I really couldn’t pin point where Lafaye voice ended and Rebecca Mascull began.

As Mascull said in the Afterword, it was like Vanessa’s voice flowed through her while she was writing…and that’s the feeling I got from reading.

Miss Marley is a quick and delightful read for all Dickens and Vanessa Lafaye fans. The perfect gift for classic book lovers at Christmas.

Rating: 🍍🍍🍍🍍.5

Miss Marley by Vanessa Lafaye is available for pre-order on Amazon (affiliated link).

Thanks HQ Stories for sending me a ARC of Miss Marley in exchange for my honest review.

*FangirlSince1988 xxx

Blog Tour: The Witch of Willow Hall by Hester Fox – Review

Synopsis by Goodreads

Two centuries after the Salem witch trials, there’s still one witch left in Massachusetts. But she doesn’t even know it.

Take this as a warning: if you are not able or willing to control yourself, it will not only be you who suffers the consequences but those around you, as well.

New Oldbury, 1821

In the wake of a scandal, the Montrose family and their three daughters—Catherine, Lydia, and Emeline—flee Boston for their new country home, Willow Hall. The estate seems sleepy and idyllic. But a subtle menace creeps into the atmosphere, remnants of a dark history that call to Lydia, and to the youngest, Emeline.

All three daughters will be irrevocably changed by what follows, but none more than Lydia, who must draw on a power she never knew she possessed if she wants to protect those she loves. For Willow Hall’s secrets will rise, in the end…

Review

Hester Fox debut novel The Witch of Willow Hall wasn’t quite what I was expecting. To be honest, at first I wasn’t even sure if I was going to keep reading, but the possibility of a romance kept me going and now I’m so glad I stuck to it.

It’s the second time this year that I start reading a book and almost halfway through I’m not sure about it, but I decide to stick to it and then ends up being a brilliant read.

This is a book that fits perfectly with this spooky time of the year. I won’t say that is a very witchy heavy book, which was what I initial thought would be. Nonetheless, you get much more than you thought you would. There is really a lot more going on.

Lydia is a wonderful, well read and likeable main character. You just can’t help but wish for all her wishes to come true. I could really resonate with her as she is just one of those characters that has to always be so strong for her family that forgets about being strong for herself and get what she wants in life. Seeing her discovering her own strength makes it for a great character development alongside everything else that is happening in Willow Hall.

The Witch of Willow Hall reminds me at times, of the old Gothic fiction classics. There is mystery, a disgusting secret, romance, a wicked sister, ghosts, witchcraft, while being set in the eerie backdrop of New Oldbury from 1821.

With all that is going on, the romance is really what I love the most. I’m a sucker for romance and historical novels are always my favourite because they play on the ‘will they, or will they not’ for longer. The anticipation really excites me, is one of my favourite tropes and Hester has wrote it exactly how I love it.

Overall, even though the first half of the book made me unsure if I was enjoying it, the second half really turned things around for me and turned it into a great read. A haunting romantic historical read perfect for all Gothic romance lovers on Halloween.

Rating: 🍍🍍🍍🍍

The Witch of Willow Hall by Hester Fox is available as a paperback and you can get it now on Amazon (affiliated link).

Thanks HQ Stories for sending me a ARC of The Witch of Willow Hall in exchange for my honest review.

*FangirlSince1988 xxx

#Blogtober: The House with A Clock in Its Walls – Event and Mini Film Review

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I had the pleasure to go to a private screening of the film The House With A Clock In Its Walls at the Entertainment One offices. I was invited by Piccadilly Press because they are also bringing out a new edition with new illustrations of the book in which the film is adapted from.

I met up with my partner in crime Nicola and her friend Rachel outside Entertainment One offices near Warren Street, so we could go in together.

I’m starting to think that I have a thing for offices, but I was geeking out inside. So sleek and nice with a big TV playing some of the films and other entertainment media they have worked on.

However, the geekiest moment of them all was when I started to look at their shelves and noticed that amongst awards LIMA and The Richard Attenborough UK Regional Awards there was and EMMY! It’s so pretty and shinny, and I don’t think I will ever be close to one again! One can only dream! *Fingers Crossed*

But enough about the EMMY. Once we  explored the reception area of the office we got to go inside their private cinema screening where once inside we got a copy of the book and bag of Proper Corn.

We got really nice seats and got settled in to watch the film.

Synopsis

The film is set in 1955. A young orphan named Lewis (Owen Vaccaro) arrives at New Zebedee, Michigan to be cared for by his eccentric uncle Jonathan (Jack Black), with the help of his neighbour Florence (Cate Blanchett).

Soon Lewis finds out that not all is at it seems, the house is actually enchanted and both his uncle and Florence are witches. As that isn’t enough, the house contains a hidden clock that is counting down to doomsday.

Together the three of them have to find a magical way of saving the world before the clock counts down!

Mini-Review

For a children’s movie I thought it was very good, magical and also very creepy!

Jack Black and Cate Blanchett chemistry as nagging best friends was amazing. Young Owen Vaccaro was adorable and quite talented, I don’t think we have seen the last of him.

I think what I most shocked by (in a good way) is that Eli Roth has directed the film. It’s quite extraordinary that the Director of Green Inferno, which by the way made me almost vomit in disgust, has also directed this magically creepy children’s film. If you have watched Green Inferno you know exactly what I mean.

Nonetheless, Roth did a great job and it was great to see his talent outside the Horror genre. However, I will probably argue that The House With A Clock In Its Walls its still part of the Horror genre. A lighter version of the genre to fit in with being a film for the whole family.

Rating: ★★★★☆

The House With A Clock In Its Walls it’s now showing in cinemas around the UK and you can also purchase the book with the movie tie-in cover on Amazon (affiliated link).

Thanks Piccadilly Press and Entertainment One for the invite.

Tick-Tock!

*FangirlSince1988 xxx

#Blogtober: 5 Things to do in London this Halloween

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One of my favourite things to do is find new and exciting things to do in London. With such a big and diverse city at our fingertips there is always something fun to do.

So with one of the most exciting seasons upon us, I thought I would compile 5 things to do in London this Halloween.

Of all the amazing things you can do in London, these 5 are some that have really peeked my interest. Price wise some can be more accessible than others but still all pretty affordable for a small budget, and all will provide some level of spookiness and for certain great fun.

Have a beer/meal in a haunted pub

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Where: The Grenadier, 18 Wilton Row, Belgravia, SW1X 7NR, United Kingdom

When: Open all year (check website for opening times)

Website: www.grenadierbelgravia.com

Spooky: 👻

“Legend has it that Grenadier is named after young Cedric, a soldier who was caught cheating at cards and punished by being beaten to death. No one knows exactly when this ghastly deed occurred, but it is thought to have been in September as that is when ghostly happenings are rife. Visitors hang money from the ceiling in an attempt to pay his debt, but poor Cedric seems to remain trapped on earth.” – from The Grenadier Website

Ghost Tours at Hampton Court Palace

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Where: Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey, Surrey, KT8 9AU

When: Various dates in October, November, January and February

Website: www.hrp.org.uk

Spooky: 👻👻👻👻

“Discover stories of spooky apparitions and paranormal activity on an evening ghost tour of Hampton Court Palace.” – from the Hampton Court Palace website

Teen Horror Pyjama Party at Prince Charles Cinema

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Where: Prince Charles Cinema, 7 Leicester PL, London, WC2H 7BY

When: 8.45pm, Friday, 26th October. (To finish approximately at 9am)

Website: www.princecharlescinema.com

Spooky: 👻👻

“ALL NIGHT / DAY MOVIE MARATHONS | HORROCTOBER 2018 • a Month of Screams, Chills, Blood and Guts! 6 Films, 1 Ticket!” – from Prince Charles Cinema website

Purge Lockdown Party at Bunker 51

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Where: Bunker 51, underground bunker in North Greenwich, London

When: 8pm to 2am, 26th and 27th October

Website: www.purgelockdownparty.co.uk/

Spooky: 👻👻👻👻

“Remember all the good the Purge does, but don’t just survive, thrive.

Tonight’s the night – but how are you preparing? The government have announced the first ever purge event – for two nights all crime will become legal. London will explode into a frenzy as purgers seek to get their revenge and unleash their darkest desires.” – from the Purge Lockdown website

Tea Break Theatre: Frankenstein at Sutton House

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Where: 2 and 4 Homerton High Street, Hackney, London, E9 6JQ

When: 7.30pm to 9.30pm, 16th October to 3rd November

Website: www.nationaltrust.org.uk

Spooky: 👻👻👻

“A spark of life, a flash… and something new is created. A scientist brings life from death, a young woman invents a new genre of literature and both will be known by the same name: Frankenstein.

This Hallowe’en, Tea Break Theatre unravel their version of Mary Shelley’s twisting tale of the inner darkness of man and the perils of stretching the bounds of nature.” – from National Trust website


Really wish I was around for the Purge Lockdown Party as I love those films and the whole immersive experience sounds amazing. However, I’m away those dates so I hope that they would do it again next year.

Tickets for all the events are still available, but I will be quick to nab them as Halloween events get sold out quick.

What are your plans for Halloween?

Will you try and go to any of the events on the list? If so which one?

Let me know in the comments. 

Boo!

*FangirlSince1988 xxx

#Blogtober: VIP Bloggers Brunch at Hot Key Books

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A week ago, I was invited by Hot Key Books to a VIP Bloggers Brunch with Alexandra Christo (To Kill A Kingdom) and Sebastien De Castell (Spellslinger series) in attendance.

The event was held at the Bonnier Zaffre offices near Bond Street. I love going to publishers offices, gives me hope to one day work in one! *Fingers Crossed*

I met up with my girlies Nicola and Ash outside the offices. Love that Ash came all the way from Wales for the event, I just love when we get lucky enough to see her too.

Once inside the office we got into a room which had a spread of doughnuts, pastries, fruit, juices, tea and coffee on a table. Me and the girls got a seat and chatted between ourselves and other bloggers while eating some of the delicious brunch.

People kept arriving, which after a while made the room quite full and there was more people than seats.  However, they made sure that people with disabilities had a chair instead of sitting on the floor which was very nice.

After a while they let Alexandra and Sebastien loose. We were able to hang out with them for a bit before they had a casual talk with us about their new books.

I loved the whole informal setting, it made things so much more fun. Alexandra and Sebastien are hilarious and super talented because their books are amazing. Well, I haven’t read the Spellslinger series yet, but I know I’m going to love it as is just my type of series.

In the end we got given a copy of To Kill A Kindom and Soulbinder (Spellslinger #4) to get it signed by the authors. I’ve met Alexandra before at YALC this year and she recognised me which made be super happy.

Overall, the event was really lovely and the Hot Key team, Clare and Roisin took such great care of us. It was really nice to have an event during the day, as I’m much more of a brunch person than a cocktail one.

I’m very thankful for the invite and can’t wait for more events with Hot Key Books.

To Kill A Kingdom by Alexandra Christo is available now on Amazon(affiliated link)

The Spellslinger series by Sebastien De Castell is available no on Amazon. (affiliated link)

*FangirlSince1988 xxx

#Blogtober: Creatures of The Night TV Tag

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I was looking for #Blogtober post ideas when I came across this old tag. Since I have never done it and I’m a sucker for creatures I thought it would be quite fitting for this year’s #Blogtober. However, I’m bringing a little twist to it.

The Creatures of The Night Tag was originally created by Katytastic and is very simple, for each creature of the night you suggest/recommend your favourite book with said creature in it. In my case, instead of suggesting books I will be suggesting TV shows.

Basically, because I’m a TV fanatic and want everyone to be watching the same things I do. I need people to gossip about TV shows with me!

Vampires – The Originals (2013 – 2018)

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A family of power-hungry thousand year old vampires look to take back the city that they built and dominate all those who have done them wrong.

The Vampire Diaries spin-off series – The Originals – has ended, but currently has all 5 seasons available on Netflix UK.

Werewolves – Teen Wolf (2011 – 2017)

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An average high school student and his best friend get caught up in some trouble causing him to receive a werewolf bite. As a result they find themselves in the middle of all sorts of dramas in Beacon Hills.

Teen Wolf has ended, but all 6 seasons are currently available on Netflix UK.

Zombies – iZombie (2015 – )

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A medical resident finds that being a zombie has its perks, which she uses to assist the police.

iZombie is still running. Season 5 with no premiere date yet, but coming in 2019. Seasons 1 to 4 currently available on Netflix UK.

Ghosts – The Ghost Whisperer (2005 – 2010)

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A newlywed with the ability to communicate with the earthbound spirits of the recently deceased overcomes scepticism and doubt to help send their important messages to the living and allow the dead to pass on to the other side.

Ghost Whisperer has ended.

Witch/Warlock/Spellcaster – A Discovery of Witches (2018 – )

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Diana Bishop, historian and witch, accesses Ashmole 782 and knows she must solve its mysteries. She is offered help by the enigmatic Matthew Clairmont, but he’s a vampire and witches should never trust vampires.

A Discovery of Witches it’s currently on it’s first season. First 3 episodes available to watch on Sky TV and Now TV. New episodes every Friday at 9pm on Sky One.

Fairy/Fae – Once Upon a Time (2011 – 2018)

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A young woman with a troubled past is drawn to a small town in Maine where fairy tales are to be believed.

Once Upon a Time has ended, but all 7 seasons are currently available on Netflix UK.

Demons – Supernatural (2005 – )

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Two brothers follow their father’s footsteps as “hunters”, fighting evil supernatural beings of many kinds, including monsters, demons, and gods that roam the earth.

Supernatural is still running.  All 13 seasons are currently available on Amazon Prime. Season 14 to premiere on the 11th of October.

Angels – Lucifer (2015 – )

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Lucifer Morningstar has decided he’s had enough of being the dutiful servant in Hell and decides to spend some time on Earth to better understand humanity. He settles in Los Angeles – the City of Angels.

Lucifer is still running. Season 4 with no premiere date yet, but coming in 2019 on Netflix. Seasons 1 to 3 currently available on Now TV and Amazon Prime.

Aliens – The Expanse (2015 – )

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A police detective in the asteroid belt, the first officer of an interplanetary ice freighter and an earth-bound United Nations executive slowly discover a vast conspiracy that threatens the Earth’s rebellious colony on the asteroid belt.

The Expanse is still running. Season 4 with no premiere date yet, but coming in 2019 on Amazon Prime. Seasons 1 to 3 currently available on Amazon Prime.

Superpowered Humans – Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D (2013 – )

marvels-agents-of-s.h.i.e.l.d.

The missions of the Strategic Homeland Intervention, Enforcement and Logistics Division.

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D is still running.  Season 6 with no premiere date yet, but coming in 2019. Seasons 1 to 5 currently available on Now TV.


One thing we can conclude from this list…I have a massive thing for handsome Vampires in suits. If you don’t know what I mean, you need to check out Elijah from The Originals and Matthew from A Discovery of Witches. I will literally let them drain me senseless!

Anyway, hope you enjoyed the tag. I’m not tagging anyone in particular, if you want to do the tag just go ahead. Just don’t forget to tag the original poster and if you decide to do it about TV shows or even films instead of books make sure to tag me, pretty please.

Alright, my work here is done so time to go binge on more TV shows on Netflix.

Happy Netflix binge!

*FangirlSince1988 xxx

#Blogtober: The Legend of the Seven Cities Lagoon – #TuesdayTale

TOP 5 WEDNESDAY (4)I thought #Blogtober was the ideal time for me to come up with a weekly prompt. I debated over a lot of different ideas that popped into my head, but in the end decided that I wanted to start #TuesdayTale.

Every Tuesday during #Blogtober I will post about a Tale/Legend from my country, Portugal. I thought it would be a good way for people to get to know more about it in a fun and original way.

To kick it off, I’m starting with The Legend of The Seven Cities Lagoon, which is one of my favourite ones.

Legend has it that many years ago, in the place where today is the parish of the Seven Cities, there was a great kingdom where lived a beautiful and kind young Princess with blue eyes.

One day, during one of her long walks, the young princess passed through a meadow where she grazed a herd. Nearby, taking care of her flock, was a nice green-eyed Shepherd whom the Princess decided to talk to.

The Princess and the Shepherd talked a lot. They spoke of the animals, the flowers, the weather, and all the simple and beautiful things that surrounded them. 

The days and the weeks passed, and the Princess and the Shepherd met every day in the same place where they had first met. As time went by, they fell in love and eventually exchanged vows of eternal love.

But the news of the Princess’s meetings with the Shepherd eventually made their way into the King’s ears, who was not at all satisfied. He wanted to see his daughter married to a Prince from one of the neighbouring Kingdoms and therefore forbade her to see the Shepherd again.

Out of respect for her father, the Princess accepted this cruel decision, but asked her father if she could meet him once more to bid him farewell. Sensitised, the King said yes.

The Princess and the Shepherd met for the last time in the green fields where they met. Once again, they spent time talking about their love and about their break up.

While they were talking, they were crying too. And they wept so much that the tears of the blue eyes of the Princess ran down the valley and formed the blue lagoon; and the tears of the Shepherd’s green eyes fell with such intensity that they formed a lagoon of green water.

At last the two loved ones said farewell and the tears cried formed two lagoons that were forever together, but just as the two lovers could never unite neither the lagoons. But they also would never be apart.

One is the Blue Lagoon, the other is the Green Lagoon: they are called The Seven Cities Lagoon. On sunny days, the colours of the two lagoons are so intense that one can almost imagine the how passionate was the look of the green- eyed Shepherd towards his blue-eyed Princess.

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Seven Cities Lagoon – Photo by Bruno Sousa

Don’t you just love that there was a time that we couldn’t phantom how beautiful a place was that we had to came up with tales for it’s creation? That a love story seems to be the only reasonable explanation for the fact that these two lagoons exist.

I just love this Legend so much, and the place is so beautiful. I went a few times when I was younger and when it’s really sunny you can see the difference in the colour of the lagoons. The whole area is wonderful and when I was little it made me wish I was a fairy princess.

Hope you enjoyed my #TuesdayTale and don’t forget to check in next tuesday for another Portuguese tale.

Let me know what you think about it in the comments, and if you decide to do #TuesdayTale make sure to tag me in your posts so I can read them all.

*FangirlSince1988 xxx

#Blogtober: My October TBR

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October is upon us, which means this is the month for pumpkin spiced lattes, spooky reads and horror films. It’s also time for #Blogtober!

This will be my first year attempting to do #Blogtober so hopefully I will be able to stick to it and post every day. The key is scheduling and let’s hope I don’t fall behind.

To start things off, today’s post will be a simple one. I will be sharing my spooky (almost!) October TBR with you. I usually don’t plan monthly TBR’s either but I thought this was the month to try out new things.

So, with no further ado…

Here lies Ana’s October TBR.

May it Rest In Peace!

Sawkill Girls by Claire Legrand

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Synopsis by Goodreads

 Beware of the woods and the dark, dank deep.

He’ll follow you home, and he won’t let you sleep.

Who are the Sawkill Girls?

Marion: the new girl. Awkward and plain, steady and dependable. Weighed down by tragedy and hungry for love she’s sure she’ll never find.

Zoey: the pariah. Luckless and lonely, hurting but hiding it. Aching with grief and dreaming of vanished girls. Maybe she’s broken—or maybe everyone else is.

Val: the queen bee. Gorgeous and privileged, ruthless and regal. Words like silk and eyes like knives, a heart made of secrets and a mouth full of lies.

Their stories come together on the island of Sawkill Rock, where gleaming horses graze in rolling pastures and cold waves crash against black cliffs. Where kids whisper the legend of an insidious monster at parties and around campfires.

Where girls have been disappearing for decades, stolen away by a ravenous evil no one has dared to fight… until now.

My Best Friend’s Exorcism by Grady Hendrix

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Synopsis by Goodreads

Abby and Gretchen have been best friends since fifth grade, when they bonded over a shared love of E.T., roller-skating parties, and scratch-and-sniff stickers. But when they arrive at high school, things change.

Gretchen begins to act…different. And as the strange coincidences and bizarre behavior start to pile up, Abby realizes there’s only one possible explanation: Gretchen, her favorite person in the world, has a demon living inside her.

And Abby is not about to let anyone or anything come between her and her best friend. With help from some unlikely allies, Abby embarks on a quest to save Gretchen. But is their friendship powerful enough to beat the devil?

How to Hang a Witch by Adriana Mather

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Synopsis by Goodreads

Salem, Massachusetts is the site of the infamous witch trials and the new home of Samantha Mather. Recently transplanted from New York City, Sam and her stepmother are not exactly welcomed with open arms. Sam is the descendant of Cotton Mather, one of the men responsible for those trials and almost immediately, she becomes the enemy of a group of girls who call themselves The Descendants. And guess who their ancestors were?

If dealing with that weren’t enough, Sam also comes face to face with a real live (well technically dead) ghost. A handsome, angry ghost who wants Sam to stop touching his stuff. But soon Sam discovers she is at the center of a centuries old curse affecting anyone with ties to the trials. Sam must come to terms with the ghost and find a way to work with The Descendants to stop a deadly cycle that has been going on since the first accused witch was hanged. If any town should have learned its lesson, it’s Salem. But history may be about to repeat itself.

The Price Guide To The Occult by Leslye Walton

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Synopsis by Goodreads


When Rona Blackburn landed on Anathema Island more than a century ago, her otherworldly skills might have benefited friendlier neighbors. Guilt and fear instead led the island’s original eight settlers to burn “the witch” out of her home. So Rona cursed them.

Fast-forward one hundred–some years: All Nor Blackburn wants is to live an unremarkable teenage life. She has reason to hope: First, her supernatural powers, if they can be called that, are unexceptional. Second, her love life is nonexistent, which means she might escape the other perverse side effect of the matriarch’s backfiring curse, too. But then a mysterious book comes out, promising to cast any spell for the right price. Nor senses a storm coming and is pretty sure she’ll be smack in the eye of it.

In her second novel, Leslye Walton spins a dark, mesmerizing tale of a girl stumbling along the path toward self-acceptance and first love, even as the Price Guide’s malevolent author — Nor’s own mother — looms and threatens to strangle any hope for happiness.

Scythe by Neal Shusterman

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Synopsis by Goodreads

Thou shalt kill.

A world with no hunger, no disease, no war, no misery. Humanity has conquered all those things, and has even conquered death. Now scythes are the only ones who can end life—and they are commanded to do so, in order to keep the size of the population under control.

Citra and Rowan are chosen to apprentice to a scythe—a role that neither wants. These teens must master the “art” of taking life, knowing that the consequence of failure could mean losing their own.

Ponti by Sharlene Teo

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Synopsis by Goodreads

2003, Singapore. Friendless and fatherless, sixteen-year-old Szu lives in the shadow of her mother Amisa, once a beautiful actress and now a hack medium performing séances with her sister in a rusty house. When Szu meets the privileged, acid-tongued Circe, an unlikely encounter develops into an intense friendship and offers Szu a means of escape from her mother’s alarming solitariness.

Seventeen years later, Circe is struggling through a divorce in fraught and ever-changing Singapore when a project comes up at work: a remake of the cult seventies horror film series ‘Ponti’, the very project that defined Amisa’s short-lived film career. Suddenly Circe is knocked off balance: by memories of the two women she once knew, by guilt, and by a past that threatens her conscience.

Told from the perspectives of all three women, Ponti is about friendship and memory, about the things we do when we’re on the cusp of adulthood that haunt us years later. Beautifully written by debut author Sharlene Teo, and enormously atmospheric, Ponti marks the launch of an exciting new literary voice in the vein of Zadie Smith.

Miss Marley by Vanessa Lafaye

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Synopsis by Goodreads

Before A Christmas Carol there was… Miss Marley

A seasonal tale of kindness and goodwill
Orphans Clara and Jacob Marley live by their wits, scavenging for scraps in the poorest alleyways of London, in the shadow of the workhouse. Every night, Jake promises his little sister ‘tomorrow will be better’ and when the chance to escape poverty comes their way, he seizes it despite the terrible price.

And so Jacob Marley is set on a path that leads to his infamous partnership with Ebenezer Scrooge. As Jacob builds a fortress of wealth to keep the world out, only Clara can warn him of the hideous fate that awaits him if he refuses to let love and kindness into his heart…

In Miss Marley, Vanessa Lafaye weaves a spellbinding Dickensian tale of ghosts, goodwill and hope – a perfect prequel to A Christmas Carol.


Those are the books I hope to read over the month of October. The ones that I’m 100% sure that will be read is Sawkill Girls and Miss Marley. The first one because as soon as it arrived in the mail today, I read half of the book in one sitting. Which means that I should finish it during tonight’s reading time. The latter one because I’m on the blog tour for it this month, so I do have to read it soon.

Tell me…are you doing #Blogtober this year? 

Also what is your TBR for this months? Loads of spooky reads or are scary reads not your thing?

Let me know in the comments below.

May your reading be full of demons and give you nightmares! MUAHAHAHAH

*FangirlSince1988 xxx

 

Blog Tour: Friendship Fails of Emma Nash by Chloe Seager – Review

Synopsis from Goodreads

Emma Nash is back….and determined to work out the world of friendships and relationships once and for all (…ish).

Now she’s in the sixth form, Emma’s expecting life to be a breeze but when her best friend Steph suddenly has a boyfriend who she’s spending more time with Emma’s not sure what to do with herself.

So Emma’s got a mission in mind: making new friends. Signing up for the school fashion show seems like the perfect opportunity. Although soon, through a series of mishaps that are absolutely not Emma’s fault (well, sort of), her world is teetering on the edge of disaster again.

Would going back to creating a life for herself online reaaaaaallllyyy be so bad?

Review

If you know me at all, you know how much I loved Editing Emma by Chloe Seager. It was one of my favourite reads of 2017, and now with its sequel Friendship Fails of Emma Nash, Chloe did it again.

This was the only book that I had on pre-order this year. So when I was told that I was going to be part of the blog tour I literally squealed of excitement. Not even joking, you can ask my boyfriend, he thought I had won the lottery for a second. Which would have been pretty epic too.

So as you can probably guess, I literally devoured this book when it arrived. I laughed so much that I had tears in my eyes.

In Friendship Fails of Emma Nash, the ever so funny Emma leaves her dating disasters behind her and dwells on making new friendships. We all have that moment in our lives when our friends start dating and you stuck between being a third wheel or leave them be to enjoy themselves and their new bae.

What Emma is about to discover is that friendships are just a hard to maintain as any romantic relationship. Chloe’s writing is not only hilarious but also finds a subtle fun way to deal with a lot of important issues. Issues that a lot of teenage girls should see more in YA books.

One of the things I mentioned when I reviewed Editing Emma is how this was a book I hoped I had when I was a teenager. Friendship Fails by Emma Nash is an amazing follow up to that. Once again, dealing on a deeper level with masturbation (not only female this time) and periods, but also dealing with orgasms or lack of thereof, female friendship, jealousy and how female/male relationships are real and not a myth.

Growing up, sometimes is hard to see what we have right in front of us. You can focus on something else so much and for so long, that you don’t realise what is happening around you. This is one of the lessons I take from this book, don’t force your friendships and open your eyes to the ones that are happening naturally. Also never stop making the effort for those friendships that matter!

Be weird! Be yourself! As you will always find a Steph that would love you no matter what. I’m very lucky that I have found my own Steph, as just like Emma I’m the weirdest gal you can meet. When you do, make sure you don’t let go!

If you are a fan of laughing until your belly hurts make sure to pick up a copy of Friendship Fails of Emma Nash by Chloe Seager. While there also pick up Editing Emma too, as is a great introduction to the ever weird, ever funny Emma Nash.

Rating: ★★★★★

Friendship Fails by Emma Nash by Chloe Seager is available as a paperback and you can get it now on Amazon (affiliated link).

Thanks HQ and Nina Douglas for sending me an paperback copy of Friendship Fails of Emma Nash in exchange for my honest review.

*FangirlSince1988 xxx

P.s.: Once again I met the ever so lovely Chloe Seager at YALC for my birthday. I think we starting a little tradition. Bonus photo: My favourite photo with Chloe from the CHCCYAFest. AHAH

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Blog Tour: Friendship Fails of Emma Nash by Chloe Seager – My Person

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“When you look to the Mirror of Erised what do you see?

Me and you, we are all crinkly. After all these years, your now white hair is still perfect. We are old. We are laughing. We are happy.”


As part of the Blog Tour for the hilarious book Friendship Fails of Emma Nash by Chloe Seager, I have been asked to write something about friendships, any kind of friendship. Good ones or bad ones. New or Old.

Two things I have realised upon writing this post. First, this is a long ass post and I’m pretty sure it isn’t what the publicists had in mind. Second, never make me write about friendships, because I will probably end up writing a love letter instead. Like this one.

I do have some wonderful friendships in my life that make me the luckiest person in the world. However, I also had some friendships that aren’t quite right, where you don’t realise how manipulative the other person is and I even have been ghosted after 5 years of friendship. I had friendships that have just fizzled out and I have friendships that not even distance can break us apart. The ones that come about in real life and the ones that you make from meeting online. I even had the one that was taken away from me way to soon, but that is a story for another time.

You can say what you want but Emma Nash got it right “Friendships take just as much work as romantic relationships”

I’m a very positive person, so I like to concentrate on my Friendship Successes instead of my Friendship Fails. In this case, I will be telling you about my biggest friendship achievement of all time. Almost 13 years with my person, the Cristina to my Meredith, the finest bird out there, Andreia.

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Look at that face!! Isn’t she gorgeous?!

I was 17 and she was 15 when we met back in 2005. The same year Grey’s Anatomy came out! This was clearly meant to be! We met in high school (college equivalent for UK people). I was the new girl in my class, most people already knew each other as they’ve been together since before High School. It’s always hard to be the new girl, but the moment I put my eyes on this amazing specimen that was Andreia, I knew she will be stuck with me for life. #SorryNotSorry

To be perfectly honest here, we don’t remember much of how this wonderful friendship started. We can’t remember what day we started school that year, so we basically celebrate during the whole of September. It’s one of those friendships that just happened naturally and 13 years after we still friends and we are like WTF? How? How does she put up with me after 13 years, it ain’t easy, why am I so lucky?

I do believe that there is such thing as soulmate friends, and Andreia is my soulmate. Ain’t that deep?

We both have been through a lot, and I probably couldn’t have copped with half of it if she wasn’t in my life. I know that is true because the hardest time I had was when we were apart for 3 years. It was during the time that I moved to England first for University and she stayed behind doing her Biology degree in Portugal. The happiest moment was when she was accepted to do her Masters in London, I had my person back!

In almost 13 years we have some great stories. Well at least we think they are great. You know, maybe you had to be there to understand what I mean, maybe not. To us they are hilarious.

Like the amount of times I used to squeeze Andreia’s face against bus windows. Seriously how does she still love me? 

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The time we travelled on the bus for 15 hours all the way from Lisbon to Andorra for our end of the year/spring break holiday. It was such and amazing week with amazing memories.

Like when our friend Marta took a picture of me and Andreia over night on the bus with a flash and got us blind. I’M BLIND!

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When we decided to go sledge after hours in the tracks and I ended up in a hole.

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When everyone left for the spa and Me, Andreia and Marta stayed behind to cook dinner for everyone. Let’s say cooking while drinking Smirnoff Ice not a good idea. How many fingers do you see Andreia? The rice was so bad that you could throw it against a wall and got stuck. Yes, we did try it. Yes, it got stuck. No, I don’t have a picture of such feat. We need to go back again one day, and re-live our glory days.

There is also the time Andreia said  ‘No way, you going to England without being drunk first with me’. Well, let’s say that night finished with Andreia throwing up in the sink as I needed to go pee. As I was putting my panties down I ended up falling into the bathtub. So there I was, on my back like a turtle, with my panties on my ankles calling out for Andreia. Let’s just say that playing the Grey’s Anatomy drinking game ends up in disaster because the amount of times they say Seriously, is seriously too many!

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We were there for each other graduations in England. We both loved the Harry Potter feel of the whole thing.

She is my favourite person to watch Horror films with. Seriously, anything makes her jump and scream. When I used to have sleepovers at her house, I used to hide under the bed while she went to the toilet and even though she knew I was there (she could hear me laughing!) when I grabbed her feet she still jumped like crazy! She holds onto my arm so much during Horror films that I get bruises in my arm, but is all worth it.

I love how passionate she is about birds and does her best to achieve her life goals, and I try my best to support her. Like making sure we take pictures with birds!

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I love how my warm hands heat her cold hands during winter.

I love how she dances like Mr. Bean.

I love how we are each other next of kin for literally everything. I got you boo!

I love how we love to dance to the Mamma Mia soundtrack around my grandma’s pool and just be silly together.

I love how when she comes visit us, Nick (my boyfriend) knows that his side of the bed isn’t really his side of the bed anymore. It is her side of the bed. You know, she was here first after all. 

I love so many things about this woman that if I was gonna write them all I will be forever typing.

This is why I can connect with Emma Nash so much, because the way she describes her friendship with Steph, is how I feel with Andreia. There is nothing I won’t do for that woman! I just love her so much. Argh. Why is she so awesome? So smart? And so beautiful? With such perfect hair? I sometimes dream of cutting her hair out and making a wig. I know. I seriously don’t know why she loves my weird ass!

If only she could see what I see! Maybe she would see how amazing she is.  She is one of the first people that when I first met I knew that she is the one I want to grew old with. Retirement is gonna be epic!

She really is the Cristina to my Meredith.

“She’s my person. If I murdered someone, she’s the person I’d call to help me drag the corpse across the living room floor. She’s my person.” — Dr. Cristina Yang – ‘Drowning on Dry Land’ (Season 3, Episode 16)

So this is my Friendship Success! Who is yours?

Make sure to get Chloe Seager’s Editing Emma and Friendship Fails of Emma Nash now at Amazon (affiliated link).

Two laugh out loud books that you need in your life.

*FangirlSince 1988 xxx