Monday, 10 October 2011

Press Release | Moonlands by Steven Savile

I've been sent the official press pack for the Moonlands Diaries which I reviewed in the previous post. I loved it and think you will too

Has an eerie feeling in the air ever teased chills from your spine? Have you been deep in thought and suddenly shifted topic entirely, unable to explain why? Is it possible, at least once in your life, you had to look twice to verify what you saw? Then it's possible you've been a part of it already.

Welcome to London - the magical city where all is not as it seems. Where the unexpected is expected by those who know to look for it. Ashley Hawthorne has lived here all her life and like everyone else who's grown used to the city, it holds no special meaning to her. That is, until that fated day she is willed an odd looking key - a key that not only unlocks her past, but her present and future as well. Suddenly, boring old London is turned into an otherworldly labyrinth where her first step could be her last. With frightening creatures intent on tracking her down and strangers who claim to have known her all her life, how can a teenager who doesn't even know who she is, hope to survive the dangers that await?

"Savile's newest work symbolizes the spirit of Young Adult adventure reading! Bold and unexpected - Moonland Diaries is a thrilling read for everyone who needs a break from the mundane. Savile proves he can write anything he wishes."
- Ashley Knight, author of Fins & Fathom

Foxrain AB teams up with bestselling fantasy author Steven Savile for the epic and groundbreaking multimedia reading experience, Moonland Diaries. The project, which will initially launch as a series of richly illustrated novels, will be supplemented online, with apps and other exciting developments that take advantage of modern technology to give the most immersive experience imaginable.

The Moonland Diaries takes place in modern day London, but as the heroine fifteen-year-old Ashley Hawthorne soon discovers it’s a world quite different from the one we are all so familiar with. The city holds ancient gates and passages to the Moonlands – a world that is both fantasticly beautiful and deeply sinister. When wolf-like creatures enter our world through the gates, intent on killing Ashley, these two worlds collide. She is forced on a wild and terrifying adventure that could cost Ashley her life as well as her heart.

“The Moonland Diaries is a wonderful project that perfectly encapsulates the ethos of Foxrain. The company is all about telling classic stories of fantasy and horror, but with contemporary and completely unique take on them, both thematically and in terms of delivery. Readers will be able to experience the Moonland Diaries across all media platforms, making it the ultimate storytelling experience for the smartphone generation. To be able to create this universe together with a brilliant and versatile writer like Steve is nothing less than a dream coming true.” Says Foxrain CEO Michael Stenmark.

“I was drawn to Foxrain for Moonland Diaries because it was immediately obvious we shared a common belief that stories can (and in this day and age should) transcend traditional paper and ink, and even e-ink, into completely immersive universes. As a writer it’s a wonderful feeling to watch other incredibly talented artists and developers run with the ideas in your head and create wonderful rich imagery that just makes everything feel more alive,” Steve explains.

Foxrain AB is a publisher of primarily children’s and young adult fiction based in Stockholm Sweden-
Steve Savile is a multiple award-winning and bestselling British fantasy writer living in Stockholm Sweden.

Saturday, 1 October 2011

Moonlands | Steven Savile

by Steven Savile
This is part one of a four part story. That in itself is deeply, hugely frustrating, because it's good and it ends on a cliffhanger.
Traitors Heir (the full story) focusses on a girl in our world with no idea who or what she is, a wolfen sent to finish her before she can claim her kingdom and the selection of strange, supposedly long dead characters who have been  guarding her in secret her whole life.
I can't tell you much more than that without giving too much away and after all only part one is available right now, part two should be released in November. IT display's Savile's ever present feel for character and adventure but contains more warmth and humour than has been characteristic for him lately. The move into YA seems to have been simple and natural. It's still dark in places and definitely mysterious, but a swift entertaining read suggesting that when complete Traitors Heir is going to deliver an excellent YA story full of courage and adventure, humour and a little blood.

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Guardian of the Gate | Michelle Zink

Guardian of the Gate by Michelle Zink was the second book in the ‘prophecy of the sisters’ trilogy.
It follows the story of 16 year old  Lia Milthorpe as she and her friends try and find a way to end the prophecy of the sisters. The prophecy determines that either Lia or Lia’s sisterwill be defeated. Both of them have known this from the beginning of the book, but it’s a question of which one of them will survive? The Guardian? Or the Gate?

Although it was an enjoyable read, I found parts of it difficult to follow as there were lots of references to the first book (which I haven’t read) and I think that the first book told you things about the main character, Lia, and her sister, Alice, that were quite important to the second book.
All in all though it was a really good book, defiantly read it, but I would say read the first one to start with.

Tuesday, 1 March 2011

My Love Lies Bleeding | Alyxandra Harvey

(in the US released as 'Hearts at Stake'.)
My love lies bleeding by Alyxandra Harvey is the first book in the Drake chronicles. It follows the story of Solange, the only female vampire ever born, not initiated. Solange has known from day 1 that she was a vampire and has always known that one day, near to her 16th birthday, she would die…..and then awake again, with fangs, a thirst for blood, and dangerous. But Solange is in danger, other vampire tribes want her blood in their lineage, Vampire hunters want to kill her, and there’s a weird stalker vampire who wants to marry her . . . . . He doesn’t even really know her by the way.
But very close to the time when she is about to turn deadly, she is kidnapped. It’s up to her brothers and her best friend, Lucy, to save her. However, Lucy has a major crush on one of Solange’s brothers, Nicholas, who is really hot but how could it work out between a mortal and a Vampire?
This book is really good and I’d rate it 9 / 10.  It took a while for me to get into it but I’m glad that I finally did. There are 3 books in The Drake Chronicles out so far, the second is ‘Blood Feud’ and the third, ‘Out for Blood’.  Apparently, the fourth one is coming out in November, but I don’t want to wait that long! :(
 Pom Pom

Maxine Linnell Reading

Back in November as part of the wonderful Everybody's Reading Festival, Maxine Linnell came and did a reading from her Young Adult novel Vintage, for the younger reviewers from Young & Un:Bound, and me, because I love the book.
Here are a few pictures from the day.

Friday, 28 January 2011

The Dead of Winter | Chris Priestly

The Dead Of Winter is about a boy named Michael who’s mother has just died so is sent to live with Sir Stephen, the man whose life was saved by Michael’s father. Michael would rather his father was alive than Sir Stephen. When he gets to Sir Stephen’s house, where he lives with his sister Charlotte and a few servants, he notices things aren’t right.  He sees and hears things that shouldn’t be there and, despite what everyone says, something is definitely wrong with Sir Stephen.

I enjoyed reading this book. I’d recommend it to people who like mystery, ghosts and to get a little scared at times. It is filled with suspense. It doesn’t take long to read because it is fairly short and keeps you interested.

By Zobdy
Age 14

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

The Fallen 1: The Fallen & Leviathan | Thomas E. Sniegoski

The book is the first two stories in The Fallen series. They are about a boy called Aaron who lives with a foster family which he loves and cares for. On his eighteenth birthday, just when he thinks his life might be going somewhere, things seem strange; he finds he can do things he couldn’t do before, like understanding anything anyone says in any language - even his dog. Reluctantly, he discovers he is a nephilim (the child of an angel and a human woman). And not just any nephilim, the chosen one that, according to prophecy, will redeem the fallen angels and become a gateway between them and heaven.

Aaron wants nothing to do with any of this. He just wants to forget everything and carry on with his life as it was before but Verchiel, the leader of a group of angels called the Powers, won’t let him. He believes he is doing God’s work by cleansing the Earth of the unholy nephilim but he also fears the prophecy. He doesn’t think it is right that the fallen should be redeemed and will do anything to stop that from happening. Aaron is forced to accept what he is when Verchiel’s obsession endangers everything near and dear to him.

A very good action filled book. An interesting alternative to vampires. I suggest that you don’t put it down and leave it for a while before carrying on like I did because, when I did that, I got a little confused. Overall, pretty good and I would like to read the next one in the series.
By Zobdy
Age 14

Monday, 24 January 2011

Obernewtyn | Isobelle Carmody

It is set in what I have assumed to be the fairly near future. A sort of natural disaster called the Great White has causes civilisation as we know it to break down and a new culture has grown. They call God Lud and the council has complete control. The Great White still affects the people; most of the land is uninhabitable and even to go near certain parts could be deadly and sometimes people are born with special powers. The council burned these people before any of their evilness could rub off on anyone else. Unfortunately for the council, not all of these gifts are noticeable from birth; they develop as they get older. The council decided against burning people who had already been accepted into the community so they call them misfits and send them to Obernewtyn, a sanctuary hidden in the mountains.

The main character is an orphan girl called Elspeth Gordie. She is a misfit and is trying desperately to keep it hidden but they find out and sent her to Obernewtyn. When she gets there, she realises that there are lots of things that don’t make sense and a few of the other misfits are very strange. With the help of a couple of friends, she sets out to discover the truth behind Obernewtyn.

To be honest, I didn’t really understand the plot. Elspeth is supposed to be different from the other misfits in some way but I’m not entirely sure how and I don’t understand the attitude of all the misfits at Obernewtyn. They are all very secretive and don’t talk to each other which confused me because I thought, since they had already been caught, they didn’t need to hide anymore.

I enjoyed the end of the book but, up until there, I was really struggling to read it. The story seemed to drag and there was nothing happening. Also, it was like I didn’t know things I should have, like a chapter explaining things had been missed out somewhere. I understood that I should only know what Elspeth knew but I didn’t even understand the things that Elspeth was constantly referring to. Maybe it was supposed to be part of the whole mystery of the thing but it didn’t work for me. I like books that don’t necessarily have to be full of action, but with suspense and mystery in them, but I felt that this was taken so far that I didn’t really have a clue about what I should have known about. Like I said, I enjoyed the end but I don’t think I’ll be looking for the next in the series any time soon. Maybe I’m wrong, I should read the next one because it explains everything I’m confused about? But that’s just my opinion, decide for yourself.

Age 14