Thursday, 23 August 2012

Review: Glitch by Heather Anastasiu

from goodreads

In the Community, there is no more pain or war. Implanted computer chips have wiped humanity clean of destructive emotions, and thoughts are replaced by a feed from the Link network. 
When Zoe starts to malfunction (or “glitch”), she suddenly begins having her own thoughts, feelings, and identity. Any anomalies must be immediately reported and repaired, but Zoe has a secret so dark it will mean certain deactivation if she is caught: her glitches have given her uncontrollable telekinetic powers. 
As Zoe struggles to control her abilities and stay hidden, she meets other glitchers including Max, who can disguise his appearance, and Adrien, who has visions of the future. Both boys introduce Zoe to feelings that are entirely new. Together, this growing band of glitchers must find a way to free themselves from the controlling hands of the Community before they’re caught and deactivated, or worse. 
In this action-packed debut, Glitch begins an exciting new young adult trilogy.


Glitch by Heather Anastasiu takes place in the Community, where computer chips are implanted in everybody's brain; wiping them of any destructive emotions. They are instead Linked to a network which feeds them with constant instructions. When Zoel starts glitching, she gets distanced from the Link and starts experiencing emotions, taste and perceiving the richness of colour for the first time. Should she report the anomalous activity or keep her secret experiences to herself?

Zoe finds it easier to put off turning herself in... especially when her anomalous activity becomes more and more questionable with the sudden emergence of telekinetic powers. And then she finds out there are other glitchers like her and they need to save others from remaining drones under the control of the Community before it's too late.

While my expectations for Glitch weren't sky high, I was taken in by the thrilling storyline. It sounded like the kind of dystopian novel that could shake me up. Unfortunately, for me, at least, the plot fell flat. I wasn't as involved in the plot as I thought I'd be. The characters, like that of Adrien and Zoe, were kind of one-note, especially with the insta-love and love triangle with Max happening.

I appreciated that Max was the embodiment of one extreme where he embraced the darker emotions because he didn't know how to deal with the sudden exposure to them any other way and enjoyed reading about Zoe experiencing her first emotions. It is like living life from scratch... the implications of various feelings and the slow development of love warming my heart.

However, the characters themselves, personality-wise (Zoe and Adrien, for instance) didn't make much of an impact on me. The book wasn't action packed enough and I didn't care for the characters even when it was implied that Zoe grows up to be made of tougher stuff. Max irked me and towards the end, I didn't find myself jumping for the sequel. Glitch clearly wasn't for me but since I did love certain aspects of the plot, there is a good chance that it's the kind of series that might appeal to you. 

Publication date: 7th August, 2012
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Source: NetGalley

Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars

Don't Fear The Reaper Read Along: Final Week, Chapters 16-21

It's the final week of the Don't Fear The Reaper read along and I've loved every minute of the read along! I got introduced to the awesomeness that is Charley Davidson and cannot wait to read the next book in the series ;) Week 4 is hosted by Heidi @ Rainy Day Ramblings!
1. One of my favorite aspects of this book are the witty snippets at the beginning of every chapter. I especially like the t shirt quotes. My favorites are:
Sarcasm. Only one of the services offered.
Do not disturb. Already there. 

What is the funniest t-shirt or bumper sticker you have encountered? What t-shirt saying best describes your personality?

I looved the fun quotes at the beginning of each chapter! Especially 'Do not disturb. Already there.' Haha! Some fun T-shirt sayings: I'm not as dumb as you look and A day without sunshine is like, you know, night. -Steve Martin!

This T-shirt is so me:

2. Charley is constantly helping ghosts throughout the book. Would you like to be able to talk to ghosts and bring closure to their loved ones? How would you feel about all the ghosts popping up at all times day or night? Would you like to have a ghost like Mr. Wong in your house?

I'd probably be a little freaked out if I run into ghosts all day and night. But who knows, maybe I'd get used to it! I love the idea of helping them get closure so that they can go into the light. Mr. Wong would be fun to have around... he's my favourite character (after Charley. And Reyes x_x) in the book! I would hope he crosses over eventually though!

3. Kim reveals some rather shocking and sad details about Reyes' past. Do you agree with her decision to adhere to her promise and not intervene? Would you be willing to keep your word and let a loved one die if it was their wish?

That is a scary and difficult question. I wouldn't want to be put in such a situation. I guess I'll truly know only if I were in such a situation and forced to act under such circumstances!

4. In Chapter 19 Charley confronts the bad guy and finds herself in yet another situation where she gets her ass kicked. Do you like the fact that Charley consistently ends up getting her butt handed to her? What are your overall thoughts on Charley?

Charley is kickass! I love how she doesn't always come out from fights unscathed. Yet she has so much spirit and is so snarky. I am always entertained by her commentary and way of doing things... Charley's too cool for anyone! xD

5. Chapter 20 is a big, hot, smoking chapter. We finally get some answers on Reyes. Does the revelation change your opinion of him? Do you think he can overcome his "nature" and be a good person or is Charley in big trouble?

The revelation explained a lot of things. At the same time, it never altered my perception of Reyes. Of course, I'm aware of Garrett um, existing. I wonder what will happen between Garrett and Charley as much as I wonder about Charley and Reyes. I believe Reyes is by nature a good person, despite his origins and everything.

6. Did you enjoy this book? Will you be continuing the series?

HECK YES. I loved this book! It was an amazing and breezy read! I cannot wait to read the next book! It's a fun and light series... exactly what I need at the moment!

Monday, 20 August 2012

Don't Fear The Reaper Read Along: Week 3, Chapters 11-15

It's Week 3 and ack, it's Monday, not Thursday. I apologise for the delay in posting this! I finished reading First Grave to the Right this weekend and it was full on amazing! Week 3 of the Don't Fear The Reaper read-along is hosted by In The Closet With A Bibiliophile!

1. I do have a soft spot for Charley's Aunt Lilian. She is sweet and soft while somehow also being a little dirty and I find that hilarious in an aunt. Do you have any relatives dead or alive that remind you of Aunt Lillian? If not, tell me about your favorite deceased relative.

I like Aunt Lillian too! She's just the right mix of quirky and warm, which I love. I don't know anyone like her but I loved my great grandmother. She was always so sweet and happy to see us when we visited!

2. In these chapters, we get a little closer to Reyes and his secrets. Neil, the warden at the prison where Reyes is currently incarcerated - and a high school mate of Charley's - tells a story about how Reyes ended up in the Coma and something he witnessed. What do you think of the story? What does this lead you to think about Reyes?

He is not... normal, is he? There is something supernatural about him and I couldn't wait to find out what it was about him that made him invincible! And even when he was who he was... why did he stay with the abusive family? How did he not escape it? I've finished reading the book now and wow, I was more than satisfied with the explanations!

3. One of the things I love most about Ubie and Charley's relationship is that Ubie aka Uncle Bob has absolute faith in our Charley. Maybe it's because Charley's been solving murder cases for ages and Ubie knows that Charley knows things. If you could pick a super power, which one would you choose? Seeing the dead? Invisibility?

It would be so cool if I could apparate! I would save a lot of time and wouldn't have to depend on public or private transport to commute. I have problems with finding my way to places and being on time to places, so apparating would be very handy!

4. Okay, in my opinion, there is nothing better than walking into your living room and seeing the god-like creature of your dreams standing there waiting for you. If you were in Charley's shoes, who would be standing in your living room??

Josh Hartnett! *melts* Or Marcus Flutie from the Jessica Darling series! I fell head over heels in love with Marcus the minute I read about him.

5. We get a surprise visit from Rosie's husband and we find out some information about Reyes...that he and The Big Bad are the same guy. What are your thoughts? Were you surprised about Rosie's husband or did you feel that one coming? What about Bad Reyes, had you already made the connection?

I wasn't all that surprised that Reyes and The Big Bad were the same guy. I kind of saw that one coming. But I was pretty shocked about Rosie's husband! I did not expect him to make an entrance!

Monday, 13 August 2012

Review: Cora Flash and the Diamond of Madagascar by Tommy Davey (Novel Publicity blog tour stop)


Eleven-year-old Cora Flash is ecstatic when she finally convinces her mom to let her take a train ride by herself to visit a relative in the mountains. Once on board, Cora meets a cast of intriguing characters, and stumbles upon her very own mystery: A valuable diamond has gone missing, and only one of her fellow travellers could have stolen it. It's up to our novice detective to solve the crime before the train reaches its destination – or the thief reaches Cora. This is the first book in the 'Cora Flash' series. 
Ages 9-12


When I was eleven years old, apart from wishing for a letter from Hogwarts, mysteries were definitely the rage! I grew up on a steady diet of Nancy Drew, Sammy Keyes and Hardy Boys and I'm sure I would've adored this independent, cell-phone toting and totally cute heroine! Cora Flash and the Diamond of Madagascar is a fun train heist mystery reminiscent of the classic Murder on the Orient Express. It's fast paced, clever and I loved that it was the kind of mystery I could solve along with Cora. There are clues scattered all over and enough suspects to keep you guessing!

I'm usually pretty picky about the kind of mysteries I love reading, so here are five clues that'll help you figure out if Cora Flash and the Diamond of Madagascar is your kind of mystery!

1. It features a fun and young heroine

Cora Flash is probably a slightly mature version of your average eleven year old and I loved that! I can see Cora growing throughout the series and it's so great that she's a eleven year old amateur tween detective!

2. Quirky whodunnit anyone?

Whodunnits are my favourite kind of mystery! Cora Flash and the Diamond of Madagascar was great at being a traditional whodunnit for the younger generation. The cast is colourful and quirky. The suspects range from a moody teenager, a couple on their honeymoon to an old woman with a cute dog and they ALL have a motive (who wouldn't want to steal a super precious diamond and get super rich, anyway?). I also loved how the author didn't shy away from explaining the whys and hows of different situations.

3. It's all in the cover

It's a great cover! If you like what you see, you'll probably like this book because the cover spells out what the book is all about!

. It's a neat mystery

Everybody seems to have equal motive and the clues are there from the beginning. I hate it when mysteries are resolved by suddenly introducing a new character or are filled with red herrings... Cora Flash does not do that! From the start, you are given the suspects and everything happens in the train. I must also say the resolution was refreshing!


Oh yes, there's more. If you're looking for a simple and fun mystery series that doesn't pretend to be anything else, Cora Flash seems to be a great choice! I cannot wait for the second book in the series. The cover looks equally cute and we already know the mystery takes place in Topaz Mountain, where Cora's uncle lives.

Publication date: 3rd February, 2012
Publisher: Brown PAW Press
Source: An e-copy of this book was provided as a part of the blog tour

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars


Wanna win a $50 gift card or an autographed copy of Cora Flash and the Diamond of Madagascar? Well, there are two ways to enter...

  1. Leave a comment on my blog. One random commenter during this tour will win a $50 gift card. For the full list of participating blogs, visit the official Cora Flash tour page.
  2. Enter the Rafflecopter contest! I've posted the contest form below, or you can enter on the tour page linked above.
About the author: Tommy Davey spent his youth writing mystery stories and plays, and watching reruns of Three's Company until every line of dialogue was permanently burned into his memory. When not writing, he enjoys traveling to favorite destinations including New York City and Paris, which he plans to feature in future stories. He lives in Toronto, where he was born and raised, with a Norfolk Terrier named Calvin. "Cora Flash and the Diamond of Madagascar" is his first novel. Connect with Tommy on his website, Facebook, Twitter, or GoodReads.

Get Cora Flash and the Diamond of Madagascar on Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Don't Fear The Reaper Read Along: Week 2, Chapters 6-10

It's Week 2 of the Don't Fear The Reaper read-along, hosted this week by Lila @ Babbling About Books and Stuff. I'm a bit late with my answers this week *hides face* but here they are!

1. Shiny objects and old family stories are told in this chapter, including an old nickname for our dear Charley. What was the nickname her uncle Bob gave her when she was little? Do you have an old nickname from when you were a kid? You can share it, and if it's really embarrassing we won't mind. *wink*

Calamity! After Calamity Jane. I've had way too many nicknames but they are mostly variations of my name or have to do with my skinniness!

2. In this chapter we met someone. A really special guy named Rocket. Now, my memory is not what it used to be, and I just can't remember what makes him so special. Can you tell me what makes this particular ghost unique among all the others? And how about you? What can you do that makes you special? Anything? Jump on one foot for a really long time counts. *giggle*

Rocket's the record keeper of the dead. His ability gave me the chills! Especially when it came to the questions Charley wanted answered! Ah, Reyes. What are you? Um, I can't really think of anything that makes me special. I can bend all of my fingers backwards. Does that count? ;)

3. Charley is really *cough* not your ordinary girl. She does something that, well, there's no way around it. She named parts of her body and the names are... oh crap, I forgot. Just my luck. *sigh* But I'm sure you guys can say what part of her body she named and what the names were. And, since we are on the matter, have you ever named a part of your body? If so, what was it and what was the name? Come on, don't be shy. *wink+crooked smile*

Haha, she named her boobs Danger and Will Davidson! I haven't named any of my body parts! -__- I'd probably name my toes, if I ever felt like it.

4. We all have our little secrets. Things we don't tell anyone, not even our bff. Char (we became close :P ) is no different, but in this chapter she shared her little (big) secret (S) with her bff. What did you think about her reaction? What would be yours?

I thought her reaction was pretty sweet. It's a mark of a true friend, I guess! Charley is so lucky to have Cookie. I'd wonder if Charley was pulling my leg for more than a second if she told me her secret. Once I believed her, I would think the first part of her secret was pretty cool. And would be extra protective of her!

5. In this chapter, Char continues her heart-to-heart with her BFF and comes up with some theories about our fave badboy/possibly ghost. What do you think of it? Can it be? What do you think about him? Hot? Double chocolate hot? Super duper caramel chocolate cake with a cherry on top hot?

Ah, um, I read way beyond the tenth chapter this weekend! I absolutely cannot wait to finish this book and find out what Reyes is! And I definitely think he's beyond super double caramel chocolate cake with a cherry on the top hot!!!! I hope there's much much more to him in the books that follow First Grave on the Right as well!

That's all for today. I'm officially addicted to this book, you guys! ❤

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Review: The Jelly Bean Crisis by Jolene Stockman (AToMR tour stop)

I'm posting my review of The Jelly Bean Crisis by Jolene Stockman as a part of the AToMR blog tour.

From goodreads

A total meltdown. The whole school watching. Now Poppy’s an ex-straight-A with no Plan B.

When Poppy Johnson throws away a full scholarship to Columbia, she can only blame the jelly beans. The yucky green ones? Midnight cram sessions and Saturday’s spent studying. The delicious red? The family legacy: Columbia, and a future in finance. Except now it’s starting to look like Poppy’s jelly bean theory is wrong. School has been her life until, but maybe it’s time to start living now.

Poppy has thirty days to try a new life. No school, no studying. Just jumping into every possible world. Thirty days to find her passion, her path, and maybe even love. The Jelly Bean Crisis is officially on.


It only takes one look at the totally fun cover of The Jelly Bean Crisis to decide it's just the kind of book you might want to randomly pick up. But reading The Jelly Bean Crisis made me realise that this book was a far cry from the quirky and funny book I thought it would be. Instead, it was scary relatable. I thought the way Poppy did in high school. I think the way Poppy did even now.

Poppy has always applied the Jelly Bean Theory to all aspects of her life. She gets to the green jelly beans first (or the yucky stuff like homework and studying) and then the orange jelly beans and the others until she finally gets to gobble the red ones, the jelly beans she has been drooling over all along. For Poppy, the red jelly beans were supposed to be her family legacy: a finance degree at Columbia. But then she starts to wonder if maybe, her theory of delayed gratification is all wrong. 

Is a full scholarship to Columbia really what she wants in life, or is it what her parents want? Were the red jelly beans worth working her way through all of those green beans? Poppy takes a gap month in which she hopes to figure out what she doesn't like and hopefully something she's truly passionate about. All in all,

The Red Jelly Beans:
(or what I LOVED about this book)
  • THE MESSAGE. I'm sure there are a lot of people who have no clue about what they want to do with the rest of their life. The Jelly Bean Crisis captures the dilemma amazingly well. I also love how it says that it's okay to get right to the red jelly beans!
  • I loved the idea of a gap month! It's not as long and scary as a gap year but is nevertheless filled with possibilities!
  • The characters and all of Poppy's experiences. They were so much fun and I felt Poppy's growth was very realistic.
  • Poppy's Nana!
The Green Jelly Beans:
(or what I didn't love)
  • The romance was a little too formulaic for me even though it was pretty sweet.
The Jelly Bean Crisis is a heartwarming and thought provoking story, especially if you're in the process of figuring out your life!

Click on the banner to check out the rest of the blog tour stops!

Publication date: 1st August, 2012
Publisher: CreateSpace
Links: AmazonGoodreads
Source: A copy of this book was provided as a part of the blog tour

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Friday, 3 August 2012

Don't Fear The Reaper Read Along: Week 1, Chapters 1-5

It's Week 1 of the Don't Fear The Reaper read-along, hosted this week by Christy @ Loves Books. I've been wanting to read First Grave on the Right by Darynda Jones for quite a while, so I was psyched to be able to be a part of this read-along!

1. We meet some of Charley’s ghostly “buddies,” do you believe you have ever had a ghostly encounter?

Um, not really. I guess my life has been pretty ghost-free so far. I vaguely remember telling my friend about seeing this guy (while crossing the road at night) fade into nothingness but I cannot remember if that actually happened! Charley's ghostly "buddies" are such fun constants. I mean, MR. WONG!!

2. Charley named her jeep Misery. Have you ever named your vehicles? What did you name them?

I don't own a vehicle at the moment! I did randomly name all the little figures on my Warli-style kurta (the "main characters" were called Brightlin and Suit-Yourself. Don't ask! It's a long story!) Weirdly enough, that's the only thing I've named. I'm yet to name my Kindle!

Warli painting

3. Charley says her name “…brooks no opposition. It takes shit from no one.” What do you think your name says about you to strangers? Is there a different name that you think would suit you better?

While I go by Ajoop on my blog... I'm Pooja IRL. Pooja means "prayer" but I don't really associate my name with anything in particular. It's just... me, I guess. When I was a kid, I never liked my name but I like it now. I cannot imagine being called anything else!

4. Charley says her best friend Cookie is “like Kramer from Seinfeld, only not so nervous, like Kramer might have been on Prozac.” Give us your best description of your best friend. How would they would describe you?

We used to be two goofy pranksters in seventh grade and now we're nothing like that but we're still BFFs. She's sensitive, mature and very straight forward. I wish I could say it like it is the way she does! My friends would probably say I'm sweet and maybe a little too absent minded for my own good.

5. Garrett is reluctant to believe in Charley’s abilities, how would you react if a friend divulged to you that they can see and speak with the dead?

I would freak out! In a good way. I'd want to know everything about this ability of hers (but probably wouldn't fully believe her till I got some kind of proof)!