Sunday, January 19, 2014

A Mad Wicked Folly Blog Tour: ARC Review

A Mad Wicked Folly
by: Sharon Biggs Waller
Release Date: January 23rd
Publisher: Viking (Penguin)
Source: ARC provided by publisher
Add A Mad Wicked Folly to your to-read list here.
Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads:
Welcome to the world of the fabulously wealthy in London, 1909, where dresses and houses are overwhelmingly opulent, social class means everything, and women are taught to be nothing more than wives and mothers. Into this world comes seventeen-year-old Victoria Darling, who wants only to be an artist—a nearly impossible dream for a girl.
After Vicky poses nude for her illicit art class, she is expelled from her French finishing school. Shamed and scandalized, her parents try to marry her off to the wealthy Edmund Carrick-Humphrey. But Vicky has other things on her mind: her clandestine application to the Royal College of Art; her participation in the suffragette movement; and her growing attraction to a working-class boy who may be her muse—or may be the love of her life. As the world of debutante balls, corsets, and high society obligations closes in around her, Vicky must figure out: just how much is she willing to sacrifice to pursue her dreams?

My Thoughts:
So enjoyed this one! Right from page 1 I was hooked, I haven't laughed so hard at an opening chapter in a long time. I only wish I could've gotten to know artist friends more, they were an amazing part of this story.

Vicky is a fantastic narrator with a fresh voice, strong opinions and kick-ass attitude (well as much of as a Victorian lady can have haha). She's a woman who has been priviledged enough to be given the world in her young life, but she's been the denied the one thing she hungers for most- freedom- freedom of choice and freedom to pursue her dreams of becoming a professional artist. Unfortunately her father doesn't see the point in a woman learning such nonsense, and so Vicky's only hope is to find a new freedom in a marriage to Edmund, but is marriage with this to-good-to-be-true gentleman everything Victoria hopes it to be? Well I have to say it- you'll have to read to find out ;).

But of course, I can't forget to mention Will. Sweet, adorable, melt your heart Will. I loved the stolen moments between he and Vicky and my only complaint would have been for a little higher notch on the steam level between these two (yes I know this is YA but still). It's hard not to fall for this man, after all he does for Vicky, I know I loved him.

The back drop to this story does have significant historical influence, as it was a time of upheaval as women began to fight for their rights, and this context flew very nicely in contrast to Vicky's own personal struggles for her own freedoms. Now I'm not a historian and I couldn't tell you for sure whether or not things are historically accurate in this book (it is fiction after all) but I can say that this book and it's narrator are highly entertaining and will keep you reading right til the last page.

The ending was very satisfying and does leave it open for further instalments, however, I'd be very satisfied if A Mad Wicked Folly remained a standalone as well. Thoroughly enjoyed it, and would recommend it to YA fans who enjoy their reads with a strong heroine, a little history and a sweet romance to round it all out.

Happy Reading!!!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

First ever TV Show review: Bitten by Kelley Armstrong

Please go here to read my original interview with Kelley Armstrong, she's terrific!

I'm so excited that Armstrong New York Times bestselling series has FINALLY made it to the small screen. I still remember almost a decade ago, when I was looking for a good read to help fill the void that the Twilight Saga (pre-Eclipse and Breaking Dawn) has left behind, and Armstrong's Bitten continued popping up on various recommendation lists, so I thought I'd give it a try, and I've never looked back!

Needless to say, I LOVE the written work from Armstrong (easily in my top five favourite books), andTrue Blood- all you need to see is the opening credits for the show to see the similarities between the two. After reading a few of the books from Charlaine Harris's Sookie Stackhouse series (cause I really couldn't stomach any more than that) I completely understand why the creators of that show chose to take such a dark, sex-driven turn on Harris's work.
while the small screen adaptation left me wanting a bit more, it shows a great deal of promise. In fact, I would probably be singing its praises right now if for not one small fact- the creators are trying WAY to hard to turn this show into the Werewolf equivalent of

Sexy love triangle: Clay, Elena and Philip
Don't get me wrong, I enjoy the sexual charge of the series premiere, however, Armstrong is much stronger writer in all respects, including plot and character, and I really don't think her narrative needs this influence. With all this said, I really enjoyed the show! Great choice in casting (although I must admit I was a bit hesitant with the choice for Clay) but I can DEFINITELY see Greyston Holt growing on me (in fact he already is). My one irk for the series premier- I really wanted more Clay and Elena one-on-one time, but I think the creators and writers made the right decision in their pacing, it was more realistic and I know there will be PLENTY one-on-one time with these two in the future haha (well that is if they follow Armstrong's work, which I'm really hoping they do)
Danver's Wolf Pack

The show's creators have done a fantastic job with their casting choice, but I LOVE that they chose to remain true to Armstrong's original work, and have set parts of the in TORONTO represent! haha couldn't help it. The set (especially the Danver's property) is exactly how I imagined it when first reading Armstrong's books- I was literally watching pages from one of my favourite books come to life! So amazing!

Overall, I would definitely recommend paranormal and Armstrong fans watch this new series Saturday nights on the Space channel (if you're in Canada). I firmly believe that this and Reign are going to be my two favourite shows for the 2014 Winter/Spring season.

Did you have a chance to watch the series premiere? What did you think of it?

Happy reading and watching! ;)

Thursday, January 9, 2014

I'm coming back! Oh and a little giveaway... wink wink

Slow and steady wins the race, right? Haha, 2013 was a crazy year for me and as a result my blog has suffered a bit. I'm not going to go into detail, but I've really missed posting reviews and bookish thoughts. I had the awesome opportunity to catch up on some MUCH needed reading time over the holidays and as such, have reviews coming up in the coming weeks. I'm not saying that I'll be posting at my normal pace, but I am going to ease myself back into it so that hopefully by end of February/early March, I'm back to my regular scheduling.

I want to thank all those who have continued to follow and check for updates on my blog, you all are why I truly love to do this (plus I can't help myself from getting into a good Romance haha).

As my way of thanking all of you I have what I think it a pretty epic giveaway that I've been holding off on posting these past couple months, now this giveaway is going to go on a little longer than my normal ones, because my hope is by the time it's done, I'll be back to my regular scheduling, kind of a guideline for myself, if you will :).

What's the prize you ask? Well have a look below, I don't think you'll be too disappointed ;)

Please refer to my Contest/Review Policies page for full terms and conditions regarding the giveaway below:

Wait for it

BOX OF ARCS (at least 20) of your choice from the picture below:
Unfortunately due to budget restrictions, this giveaway is only open to Canadian and U.S. mailing addresses. I apologize my international followers, but if you know someone who lives in these two countries that I can ship to, feel free to enter (please have their permission thought :))
Good luck to all! :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway