Advent (Advent Trilogy book one), by James Treadwell
A December night 1537 and a powerful mage boards a ship for England. There is a shipwreck and none survive. What has happened to the box he was carrying? The box with a magic mirror and ring inside?
Present day: Gavin knows he is different. He still has his childhood imaginary friend, Miss Grey for a start and he dreams very strange dreams. His parents don’t like him and when they get the chance to go overseas, they pack him off to his Aunt Gwen who lives outside Truro, on an estate called Pendurra. But his aunt isn’t there to meet his train and she isn’t in her cottage and when a girl with dead eyes bangs on his door at midnight and then shuffles away, Gavin is certain this is not going to be an ordinary holiday! The next day he meets the owner of Pendurra and his daughter. The very same dead looking girl whom he’d seen the night before but now very much alive. Marina and Gavin spend time exploring, finding strange things happening and finally realise that ‘magic is rising…’
Changeling (Order of Darkness book one), by Philippa Gregory
Luca Vero, the changeling. Or so the people of his village called him, for he was a very brilliant boy and his parents only peasants. The church of 1453 find him, always asking questions and put him to the task of Inquirer into some of the strange happenings the church has become aware of lately. He arrives at an abbey where the nuns are having visions and stigmata are appearing on their hands. All of these things began when the new abbess arrived but is she the evil temptress they think she is? Luca must discover the truth or watch an innocent girl burn at the stake.
Written by the renowned historical author of The Other Boleyn Girl and many other books, this is an easy read with interesting outcomes and images.
A Confusion of Princes, Garth Nix
Imagine knowing you are one of ten million princes throughout the Empire! Imagine knowing you could die twenty times and be ‘reborn’! But you can only be reborn if you are connected to the Imperial Mind, so the first task for Prince Khemri is to dodge any stray bullets and explosive devices to get to a base where he can ‘connect’! He becomes a naval cadet and a target for his fellow cadets, as he seems to be privileged with 12 priests and a senior Master of Assassins assigned to him. His first death comes during a raid by their enemies the Sad Eyes, whilst stopping the invaders from blowing up the base. More adventures follow but will he accept his Imperial-chosen destiny or change it for himself? Good sci-fi adventure by a favourite author.
Little stranger, by Annah Mac
“We saw Annah in Taupo opening for The Little River Band and The Doobie Brothers. She and her band were great and really got people in the mood for the rest of the day. I particularly like ‘Girl in stilettos (Pohutukawa trees)’. This has a fun beat and when you see the guy live, playing it on the keyboard, he is really funny. They are all so young and he looks about 15!”
Annah Mac’s Facebook page is here.
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, by Michelle Hodkin
How is it that Mara escaped the totally destroyed building with a sore head and all her friends died? Who bashed in the head of that dog-beating hulk of a man near her school? What strange things are happening to the wildlife in their new home town? So many alligators dead all at once! Could these incidents be related? And why does she have to be attracted to the best looking guy at school who can only mean trouble!
A strange and haunting tale of life with amnesia and self discovery.
Daughter of smoke & bone by Laini Taylor
This is a fantastic story about the eternal fight between seraphim and chimaera and the hope of change. Around the world, black handprints are appearing on doorway, scorched there by winged strangers. In a dark and dusty shop in Prague, a sorcerer’s supply of teeth grows dangerously low and he sends his messenger through one of the marked doors to the other side of the world to collect more. There Karou meets and fights with a beautiful winged seraph before returning with the teeth she was sent to collect. Although she manages to escape, she cannot stop thinking about the angel and neither can he forget her! Karou = hope.
Raewyn’s latest book review!
Devil’s Kiss, by Sarwat Chadda – A Knights Templar! Who would have guessed that she could be one of them? Billi had thought it was a wonderful thing to be chosen as one of this elite fighting group when she was only 10 but now at 15 she has bruises everywhere and her Ordeal is to kill a boy of 6! Well actually it is a demon inside the body of a 6 year old boy but you have to be up really close to tell that. Then her friend Kay returns from Jeruselem and she is having to learn a lot more about how much evil there is in the world. When Kay looks into the Cursed Mirror and opens a portal to the other side things start to get weird. But when she is asked out on a date with a handsome young man she starts to think about doing normal things for a change – or is this just the beginning of the end?
Two reviews from Raewyn!
Juno of Taris, by Fleur Beale – On an isolated, storm-buffeted island in the Southern Ocean lives Juno and 499 other survivors of the 21st Century world. Their island is covered by a dome which protects them from any outside influences, including disease and war. But Juno begins to question the authority of the council and so becomes a target herself. Is what they have always believed really just a lie? When her friend Vima finds 2 cellphones and Juno teaches her to read, they begin a secret mission to find out what is behind the troubles on Taris.
The Last Free Cat, by Jon Blake – ALL FREE CATS CARRY DISEASE! This is what the population have been told and so only the Corporation’s specially bred cats are allowed to be owned by those who can afford them. So when Jade sees a cat walking across her back garden she is not sure what to do. The cat, Feela, doesn’t look dangerous and it feels so nice to stroke her, and amazing when she rubs around her legs. Her mum told her not to encourage it but in the end she too is won over by this furry bundle of fun.
But what will happen if the authorities find out that they have a cat? They soon find out when their house is invaded and it is disastrous for Jade’s mother’s health. Jade finds herself on the run with Kris, a street kid from her school. The chase is on! Will they escape to Ireland where the law regarding cats is different or will they be caught and thrown into prison, knowing that Feela will be put down?
A good adventure in a futuristic world.
A new review from Raewyn:
Weedflower, by Cynthia Kadohata.
Working on her family’s flower farm until she was old enough to own her own flower shop was Sumiko’s dream, but that all changed on December 6, 1941 when Japan bombed Pearl Harbour. Suddenly they had to burn all of their Japanese things in case they were thought of as “un-American” and then the trucks came and took them away to internment camps set on an Indian Reservation. How long would they be there in the dust and heat? What if the war lasted 10 years? Sumiko decides to create a garden with her neighbour and she uses the special seeds she brought with her from home to brighten the garden with “weedflowers”. This story helps us to see the world of the war through the eyes of Japanese living in the United States and how they were treated by the authorities and everyday people.
A book review from Raewyn!
Atherton: The House of Power, by Patrick Carman.
Atherton is a made up world, Edgar. A place created by men at a time when almost every part of the known world was used up. This was the first part of the book that Samuel read to Edgar and the beginning of their fight to help the people of their separate worlds, as they gradually came together. Atherton is made up of three tiers. The Highlands is where the water comes from and is the domain of Lord Phineus who controls all. Tabletop is ruled over by the cruel Mr Ratikan (a pawn of Lord Phineus), hard taskmaster to the people who tend the fig trees, which feed the Highlanders. And far below are the Flatlands, where horrible creatures dwell. What will happen when all the tiers become one? First in this new series by the author of “The Land of Elyon”.