Friday, 11 December 2015

Book Review - The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins | ★★★

In this book, we not only have one central character, we have three: Rachel, Megan and Anna. 

Let´s begin with Rachel, who is the main of these three women. She is in her early thirties, already divorced and currently living with a friend from college in the London suburbs. Rachel is an alcoholic, which is the reason she got fired from her job. 
Because she has nothing else to do and she wants to hide the fact that she is unemployed from her roommate Cathy, she takes her usual train to London every day.

“I am not the girl I used to be. I am no longer desirable, I’m off-putting in some way. It’s not just that I’ve put on weight, or that my face is puffy from the drinking and the lack of sleep; it’s as if people can see the damage written all over me, can see it in my face, the way I hold myself, the way I move.” 

Sunday, 11 October 2015

Book Review - The Martian by Andy Weir | ★★★★★

Mark Watney is an astronaut participating in the third manned journey to Mars along with five other people. The mission is planned to take 31 days on Mars´ surface, to observe the planet and make experiments, such as testing the ability of growing plants, etc. 

On day six, the Ares 3 crew gets caught in a massive storm and NASA gives the order to abort the mission. Unfortunately, Watney gets hit by flying debris during evacuation and is presumed dead by the rest of the crew. 

With very extremely big amounts of luck, he survives but has to way to tell anyone, because the communication system to get in contact with Earth or his crew, who is on it´s way home already, was destroyed during the storm.

Friday, 11 September 2015

Book Review - The One by Kiera Cass | ★★★


Only four girls are left in the competition to win Maxon´s heart and the crown of Illéa; Competent Elise, sweet Kriss, gorgeous Celeste and of course, America. 

America still regularly upsets the apple cart of the Illéan monarchy and acts mostly impulsive and careless with no thought what her actions may cause and how that could change her fate with Maxon. As the bad rebels from the South start hurting people caste by caste, America advises openly the whole Illéan populace to fight back. This however, gets King Clarkson angrier about her actions than he was ever before. He wants her gone. 
“America, you are full of nothing but bad ideas. Great intentions but awful ideas.” 
The conflict between the Southern rebels and the royal family (especially King Clarkson) continue to grow more and more. Between America and Maxon everything is good and they seem to want the same thing: Peace.

Sunday, 26 July 2015

Book Review - The Giver by Lois Lowry | ★★★

Jonas lives in perfect society - nothing of the bad things we know exist in that place. The motto of it is sameness; everything is the same for everyone. Children are no longer born in families, they are made in a laboratory and breaded by birth mothers. Everybody gets one year older in December, even if you were born in another month. Every year there is a ceremony that lasts two days, where each child gets one year older and where they get their new item for the next year. One year old get assigned to a family who requested a child, new nine year old get a bicycle, twelve year old get assigned a job which they have the rest of their lives. 

Saturday, 11 July 2015

I´m Back! + Book Haul

Hallihallo my dear friends

Since you may noticed that my posts and my reviews have been a bit rare in the last few weeks, I´m here to apologise for that, to tell and show you what was going on. I hope you can forgive me :)

The past week I was travelling Europe. I was staying in Dublin and did a lot of sightseeing (I was the cliche tourist with lots of bags and my camera around my neck all the time!). I visited a lot of libraries which were filled with books who date back to the 15th century, it was truly amazing. I even sat at the same table where Bram Stoker and James Joyce (!!!!!) did there reading *heavy breathing*. But I also bought a lot of books in the many bookshops Dublin has. 

So here is my Dublin Book Haul:
  • Extraordinary Means by Robin Schneider
  • Don´t Even Think About It by Sarah Mlynowski
  • The Children Act by Ian McEvan
  • Endgame - The Calling by James Frey
  • Endgame - The Complete Training Diaries by James Frey
  • Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour
  • Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley
  • The Girl On the Train by Paula Hawkins
  • Vampire Academy 1-6 by Richelle Mead
  • Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari
  • Amnesia by Peter Carey
  • The Martian by Andy Weir
  • All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
  • Dracula by Bram Stoker

Before my trip to Dublin I celebrated my birthday, where I got also some books (and lots of gift cards to buy new books):
  • The Silmarillion by J.R.R. Tolkien
  • To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee

The weeks before that, I bought myself an e-Reader. During exam time. Shame on me! But because it is already filled with more than 100 books, I won´t bother to list them here.

Some long wanted books were also added to my shelf:
  • Mind Games by Teri Terry
  • Mindwalker by A.J. Steiger
  • The City of Ember by Jeanne DuPreau
  • Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

Note: Mindwalker by A.J. Steiger was sent to me by one of my readers. Thanks again Sarah!

The Trip to Dublin was amazing and I hope that you have the chance to go there one day. Also, I hope The coming reviews will satisfy you enough to forgive me the lack of post the past weeks. I wish you a good time and reading. Let me know if you have any review wishes!


Nathalie, a.k.a. Shonela

Monday, 8 June 2015

Book Review - The Elite by Kiera Cass | ★★★


America still lives in the royal palace and her daily routine now includes learning rules and how to run a country. She has never expected to last as long as she did and become one of the Elite. There are only six girls left and all of them compete for Maxon´s love and the royal crown. More and more America has come to realise that she may be in love with Maxon, but she does not want to become a princess and accept all the responsibilities that come with said crown. In addition to all that trouble, there still is Aspen who works as a guard in the royal palace. 

Friday, 29 May 2015

Book Review - The Selection by Kiera Cass | ★★★

America Singer is a five out of eight. That means she´s on the fourth lowest rank on Illéa´s, her country´s, caste system. Illéa is where the United States used to be and is now shaped by this futuristic society. America was born into the rank of artists and performers and has chosen to be a singer, playing the piano, violin and many other instruments. 

When the country´s prince comes of appropriate age, there will be a selection of his future wife and queen of Illéa. In the selection, 35 girls will participate to date the crown prince Maxon, and from all these girls, he has to choose one to marry. 
“Listen to me, kitten. Win or lose, you’ll always be a princess to me.” 

Sunday, 24 May 2015

Book Review - Rebel Belle by Rachel Hawkins | ★★★

Harper Jane Price, 17 years old, has a wonderful life. Apart from her sisters death one year ago, she has a amazing boyfriend Ryan, wonderful friends, loving parents and a bright future. Harper is a southern belle and from the outside perfect. Perfect grades, school president, popular everywhere. But as she forgets her lip gloss in the night of her homecoming dance, her perfect world seems to fall apart. 
“Looking back, none of this would have happened if I’d brought lip gloss the night of the Homecoming Dance.” 
Harper borrows some lip gloss from her best friend and goes off to apply it in the ladies bathroom at school before her name is called for Homecoming Queen. While she is applying it, she is interrupted by the school´s janitor, Mr. Hall. He is mortally wounded and for his last breath, he grabs Harper and exhales inside her mouth. Her history teacher storms in and Harper figures out that he is the one who killed the janitor. As he notices Harper he tries to kill her too, but Harper finds herself with new abilities and fights her teacher, eventually kills him.

Sunday, 17 May 2015

Book Review - The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin | ★★★★

Mara Dyer, a 17-year-old girl, wakes up in hospital with no memory of what had happened. She learns that she survived a horrible accident, in which her best friend, Rachel, her boyfriend, Jude, and his sister, Claire, died. Late at night, they went to an abandoned Asylum, and while they were going through all the rooms, Jude stopped Mara and forced her to do things she wasn´t ready to do. Before anything bad between the two could happen,  there was a loud creak and the building collapsed. Mara herself is physically unharmed but suffers from severe Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and hallucinations. Together with her parents and her brother, she moves to Florida in hopes to over come the tragedy. 

Monday, 11 May 2015

Book Review - Witch Child by Celia Rees | ★★★★

1659: Mary, a 14-year-old girl from England, was raised by her grandmother, her parents left her at an early age, in a cottage at the very edge of a forest. After her grandmother was hanged as a witch, Mary has to leave her home. She is brought to a noblewoman who helps her acquire a new identity. It turns out that this noblewoman is her long lost mother. To escape prosecution, her mother decides it is best for Mary to join the group of settlers heading to America.
“I looked into her eyes, and saw my own staring back, the same peculiar shade, pale grey, flecked with yellow, rimmed with black. Now I knew the nature of her debt. It had weighed on her conscience for fourteen years. I was looking into the eyes of mother and I knew that I would never see her again.” 

Monday, 4 May 2015

Book Haul - April 2015

I bought a few more books last month, even though I know there is not much more space available on my bookshelves. I try not to buy more books until I read through my TBR-pile...

These are the books I purchased:

  • The Knife of never letting go by Patrick Ness
  • A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness
  • Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas
  • Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas
  • Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas
  • Rebel Belle by Rachel Hawkings
  • The Winner´s Curse by Marie Rutkoski
  • The Winner´s Crime by Marie Rutoski
  • The Diviners by Libba Bray

I just started reading Rebel Belle, but I am looking forward to reading all of these books. I´m very excited about the Throne of Glass Series!

I will try to write a review about all of them, but it may take a while. If you have any wishes which books I should read and review first (not just these, but the ones on my book list, too), let me know :)

Sunday, 3 May 2015

Book Review - The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne | ★★★

Bruno is a nine year old boy, who grew up in Berlin during World War II. His family is wealthy and they live in a five-story house with servants. He has a 12-year-old sister, Gretel. 

Bruno doesn´t know his father´s profession, but he wears an impressive uniform and they have been visited by a very important man called the Fury. After that visit, Bruno´s father got an even nicer uniform, his title changed to Commandant and they move to a new home at a place called Out-With. 

The new home is smaller and always full of soldiers. Bruno doesn´t like it and the worst thing for him is that there is nobody to play with. He has a small window in his bedroom from which he can see a town of people all dressed in striped pyjamas. The strange thing was that they were separated from him by a large fence. He approaches his father about them and asks who they are, he responds that they aren´t really people. 

Thursday, 30 April 2015

Book Review - Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard | ★★★★★

Mare Barrow is a 17-year old girl living in a divided world. There are the Silvers, they form the upper class of citizens, have special powers and bleed silver blood, and the Reds, they bleed red blood and are the weak and powerless subjects of the Silvers.
“The gods rule us still. They have come down from the stars. And they are no longer kind.”
Mare was born red, grew up in poverty and, like all reds, struggles to survive. Together with her sister and her parents she lives in The Stilts, a red town not far from a royal residence. Without a talent or apprenticeship, which are both rare, Reds are forced to join the army by the age of 18 to fight in a seemingly everlasting war, for most of the Red it means death.

Sunday, 5 April 2015

Book Review - The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey | ★★★★★

I finally got around to writing a review about my favourite book of 2014!
It´s The 5th Wave written by Rick Yancey. It belongs in the dystopian YA genre.

Cassie (for Cassiopeia) is 17 years old and all alone in the world. It has been weeks since Cassie has seen another person and she may be the only remaining human survivor of a brutal mass extermination.
A few months ago, the Arrival of the Others was a worldwide sensation. Bringing chaos, hope, but also fear to all humans. Ten days after the Others arrived, the 1st wave struck: A global EMP destroyed all electronics from one second to the next, killing half a million people. The 2nd wave was even more mortal: The Others unleashed a massive earthquake and tidal wave which killed everyone living within a 60 miles radius of an ocean coast. Three billion people died.

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Book Haul - March 2015

In March I bought quite an unusual high amount of books. All in all I purchased 21 books (2 are made out of 2 Stories, so it was actually 23 Books).

These are the Books I got:

  • All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
  • The Art of Wishing by Lindsey Ribar
  • Cinder by Marissa Meyer
  • Cress by Marissa Meyer
  • Dark Places by Gillian Flynn
  • Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
  • Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
  • Flygirl by Sherri L. Smith
  • The Fool´s Girl by Celia Rees
  • Four by Veronica Roth
  • Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
  • The Line by Teri Hall
  • Pirates! by Celia Rees
  • Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard
  • Scarlet by Marissa Meyer
  • Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn
  • Sovay by Celia Rees
  • The Sin Eater´s Daughter
  • Ultraviolet by Rebecca Anderson
  • The Unseen 1 (It Begins/Rest In Peace)
  • The Unseen 2 (Blood Brothers/Sin and Salvation)

I´m looking forward to reading all of this books. I´m really happy that I finally bought The Lunar Chronicles (Cinder, Scarlet and Cress), Eleanor & Park, Fangirl and Gone Girl. I think these are the books I´m most excited about.

I will try to write a review about all of them, but it may take a while. If you have any wishes which books I should read an review first (not just these, but the ones on my book list, too), let me now :)

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Book Review - The Line by Teri Hall | ★★

In The Line a girl named Rachel lives on The Property together with her mother Vivian. Vivian is employed by the owner of the property, Ms. Moore, to take care of the house. Rachel does not go to school, her mother teaches her at home. During the day she works in Ms. Moore´s greenhouse and helps her with breeding orchids.

Rachel is a very curious girl and while her mother teaches her everything she needs to know about the Unified States she is drawn to the Line, an invisible barrier, which separates the country from the abandoned and terrifying land Away, where it is said that strange people and animals live, ever since it was barricaded off many years ago by the government. If anybody tried to cross the line they would get in to a lot of trouble with the now extremely controlling government, but they aren´t even physically able to anyway.

Friday, 20 March 2015

My TBR-Jar Pick - The Line by Teri Hall

Just yesterday I put book titles of all my new purchased books into my TBR-Jar. Today I picked a piece and it was one of the newly added titles: The Line written by Teri Hall. 

It isn´t a very long book, a bit more than 200 pages, so I will be quickly done with it. It was published in 2010 and there are 2 other books in this series (Away, The Island). 

A review will be posted as soon as possible.

A desperate message from a forbidden place can change everything...

Rachel and her mother live peacefully on The Property owned by Mrs. Moore, far away from the city, where the totalitarian government is most controlling. Rachel quietly tends to Mrs. Moore´s orchids in her greenhouse - the one that overlooks the Line, where you can see Away. Going any closer to the Line is forbidden. And Rachel has heard that Away is an unimaginable and frightening place. But then she hears a recording - a voice desperately pleading for help-that could only have come from Away. Rachel wants to respond, but will she dare to Cross the Line?

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Book Review - Shattered by Teri Terry | ★★★★


And again, the story continues to follow Kyla´s life after she was slated, found out about Ben and her leaving after the explosion of Nico´s com. After everything that happened, Kyla is finally ready to find out who she is and where she comes from. With the help of MIA(Missing in Action)-Member Aiden, she has the chance to get a new identity and travel to Keswick, the place where her mother should live.

While in Keswick, she discovers more and more about her past and at the same time lots of memories come back, mostly about her father, who she now knows died trying to safe her. But the more she finds out, the more disturbing it gets, because what Stella, her mother, tells her does mostly not go along with the memories Kyla´s getting back. For one point that is, that Stella and Daniel aren´t Kyla´s real parents.

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Book Review - Fractured by Teri Terry | ★★★


I finished Fractured a few weeks ago and finally found time to write the review (I already read Shattered, the third book of the trilogy). 

The story continues to follow Kyla´s life after she was slated. It jumps right in after the violent struggle with Wayne Best in the woods. Memories start to surface and Kyla is very confused, since Slateds are not supposed to be violent. If they are, their Levos are programmed to stop them by rendering them unconscious or even killing them. But right after she gets away from the badly injured Wayne she discovers that her Levo isn´t working anymore. Soon memories of someone named Rain appear and she starts to realise that she is someone else.

Monday, 2 March 2015

Book Review - Where She Went by Gayle Forman | ★★★★


The Sequel to If I Stay is told from Adams perspective. Adam was Mia´s boyfriend in the first book, where she survived a car crash that killed the rest of her family. In the end of the book Mia decided to stay alive as she heard Adam beg for her to stay and vow to her that he would do everything if she lives, even leave her.

Where She Went takes place three years after the accident. Adam is now 21 and a famous rock star, living in L.A. with his girlfriend, who is a not-so-famous movie actress. It turns out that Mia left Adam at the moment she stept onto the airplain, leaving to attend Julliard, without an explanation. The pain Adam is in after Mia left is ironically what brought him to fame, because of the intensly emotional lyrics of his new album.

Saturday, 21 February 2015

Book Review - If I Stay by Gayle Forman | ★★★

I decided to make two seperate reviews of If I stay and Where She Went by Gayle Forman. 

Mia is a seventeen year old girl, who is, except for her talent in playing the cello, pretty normal. She has a good shot at attending Julliard, a boyfriend, who also is a musican but playing the guitar in a rock band, a best friend and a family everybody could wish for. On a snowy day school is cancelled and her family decides to go visit their best friends who recently got a kid. But on this day Mia's life and dreams of becoming a famous cellist are shattered. On the way the family's car collides with another. Right after the accident, Mia finds herself somewhere between life and death. From outside her badly injured body, she sees the hugeness of the crash and later follows  the events at the hospital. Her Parents died instantly and her brother makes it to the hospital but doesn´t survive. 

Monday, 16 February 2015

Reading Slide-In

Before I´ll continue with the Slated trilogy, I want to read If I Stay and it´s sequel Where She Went by Gayle Forman. I got these books in todays mail and I just can´t put them away. Besides, each book has about 260 pages, so i´ll be through them quickly.

Soon there will either be a review of both books together or two separate reviews.

Book Review - Slated by Teri Terry ★★★★

Yesterday I finished the book I picked from my TBR-Jar. It was quite interesting and I had a hard time to lay the book down. 

The story is about a sixteen year old girl, Kyla, who has been slated, that means all her memories were erased. She is told that all who had been slated were criminals but the government gave them a second chance to get their lives back instead of being in prison or getting terminated. However, this option is only possible for people under sixteen years. Now she must play by the rules set by the government, she must learn to fit in and not ask questions. Her new life is dominated by a wristband, a Levo, which connects to a counterpart implanted in her brain. This Levo controls her emotions and it forces a black out as soon as their mood levels drop to low. This method is used to stop the slated to fall into anger or depression, so they can´t hurt themselves or others. Further in the story, Kyla can't stop herself from questioning things, she doesn´t accept the phony answers she receives.

Friday, 13 February 2015

My TBR-Jar Pick - Slated by Teri Terry

Since I´m not good at deciding what to read next, I´m using my TBR (To Be Read) - Jar. It contains little pieces of paper with titels of books I haven´t read yet. So everytime I don´t know which book to pick up, I randomly pick one of the pieces and read the chosen book. No exceptions.

So for today I picked Slated by Teri Terry. It´s the first book of the Slated trilogy and I´m really excited to start reading it. I only heard good things about this series, so I hope I like it, too. Review is coming soon!

Kyla´s memory has been ereased, her personality wiped blank, her memories lost forever. 

She´s been slated.

The government claims she was a terrorist, and that they are giving her a second chance - as long as she plays by their rules. But echoes of the past whisper in Kyla´s mind. Someone is lying to her, and nothing is as it seems. Who can she trust in her search for the truth?

Book Review - Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins ★★★★★

For my first review I picked "Anna and the French Kiss" written by Stephanie Perkins not only because I read it a few days ago but because it´s a great and lovely book. 

The story revolves around Anna, a teenage girl from Atlanta. For her senior year at high school, her parents decide to send her to an American boarding school in Paris. Anna doesn´t like to spend a year away from her best friend, Bridgette, and her could-be-boyfriend, Toph, but there is nothing she could do about it.

"Who sends their kids to boarding school? It´s so Hogwarts. Only mine doesn´t have cute boy wizards or magic candy or flying lessons."