Top Ten Tuesday – Top Ten Best/Worst Series Enders

This week The Broke and The Bookish have asked for our Top Ten Best/Worst Series Enders. When we have a choice like that I like to put some from both and this week is no different. I think sometimes I might over read the topics because for this week I considered that you could have favourite or worst ends in terms of what actually happened but also just having a good or bad last book, I’ve gone the second option because its the way its written that makes what happens good in the end and it also made writing my list a lot easier.

Favourites

  • Rapture – Fallen Series by Lauren Kate
  • United We Spy – Gallagher Girls by Ally Carter
  • Brothers to the Death – The Saga of Larten Crepsley by Darren Shan
  • Monsters of Men – Chaos Walking Series by Patrick Ness
  • Sons of Destiny – The Saga  of Darren Shan by Darren Shan
  • Ascend – Trylle by Amanda Hocking

Worst

  • Requiem – Delirium trilogy by Lauren Oliver
  • Double Crossed – Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman
  • Missing Me – Girl Missing Series by Sophie McKenzie
  • Extras – Uglies Series by Scott Westerfeld

 What Are Your Best and Worst Series Enders?

Top Ten Tuesday – Top Ten Books With Tough Subjects

This week our topic from The Broke and The Bookish is perfect for me. Top Ten Books With Tough Subjects. I could’t pick just 10 however so I’ve picked 11 topics and shared some worthwhile reads about them as books about tough subjects are ones that I tend to go for. It’s not so much that I like them, in some cases the topic isn’t something you can enjoy reading about, it’s more that I find them interesting. That might sound odd and maybe even horrible to some people but for me I guess it’s partly about knowing that things could always be worse but more allowing myself not to be desensitized by issue that are always in the news and really understand the pain that people are feeling right now and hoping they can get help.

Self-Harm

  • Red Teas by Joanna Kenrick

Incest

  • Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma
  • Flowers in the Attic by Virgina Andrews

Death/Suicide

  • The Pact by Jodi Picoult
  • If I stay by Gayle Formam

Illness

  • Before I Die by Jenny Downham
  • My Sisters Keeper by Jodi Picoult
  • The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
  • The puzzle Master be Heather Spiva

Teenage Pregnancy

  • Roxy’s Baby by Catherine MacPhail

Racism

  • Noughts & Crosses by Malorie Blackman

Drugs

  • Junk by Melvin Burgees

War/Genocide

  • Malka by Mirjam Pressler
  • Before We Say Goodbye by Gabrielle Ambrossio
  • Between Shade of Grey by Ruta Sepetys
  • Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank
  • Private Peaceful by Michael Morpurgo
  • Over A Thousand Hills I Walk With You by Hannah Jansen

Loosing a family member

  • Many Stones by Carolyn Coman
  • The Shack by Wm Paul Young

Bullying

  • Cloud Busting by Malorie Blackman

Criminal Past

  • Looking for JJ by Anne Cassidy

2012 End of Year Book Survey

I have been thinking about review my bookish year on my blog for the past month and came across this lovely survey created by The Perpetual Page-Turner that she has been creating for the past few years. With New Year almost here and this being my first year as I blogger I am going to use it to look back over my year and hopefully relive some great moments. I think overall it’s been a good year and that includes for my reading and blogging.

Best in Books 2012

1. Best Book Read in 2012? There was an option to put these books but genre but I think I do havea  favourite book of this year and that’s  Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire. I’m not sure why I loved this book because in theory its a girly love story but I just couldn’t put it down.

2. Book you were excited about and thought you were going to love more but didn’t? I was so looking forward to reading Warm Bodies by Issac Marion this summer but sadly I  felt like it lacked energy.

3. Most surprising (in a good way) book of 2012? Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver The first book in this series was a bit disappointing so I wasn’t sure what to expect from the second book however it was written slightly differently and it was so much better. 

4. Book you recommended to people most in 2012? Before I Go To Sleep by SJ Watson This book was recommended to me by a friend and since I’ve read it I have told everyone I know who loves reading about it. 

5. Best series you discovered in 2012? This question depends on if it is a new series that isn’t finished yet or a whole one you only read this year.  I think I’m going to say the Divergent series by Veronica Roth though as this was the first dystopian I picked up after The Hunger Games and it matched up to it for me.

6.Favourite new author you discovered in 2012? It’s hard to pick a favourite because some authors I read more books of that other’s but I am going to say Jamie McGuire and Patrick Ness

7. Best book that was out of your comfort zone or was a new genre for you? The Black Pear  by Allan Porter This free kindle book was just something that sounded a bit different and I wasn’t sure what to expect but it was totally different from everything else I have read else I had read and I really enjoyed it. 

8. Most thrilling, unputdownable book in 2012? Before I Go To Sleep by SJ Watson This book has you questioning everyone and their motives in it the whole way through and the end will still surprise you. 

9. Book you read in 2012 that you are most likely to re-read next year? Slated by Teri Terry I feel I didn’t really understand the ending of this book so I am going to re-read it before the next book in the series comes out. 

10. Favourite cover of a book you read in 2012? Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

11. Most memorable character of a book you read in 2012? This is also a difficult question I don’t think I can narrow it down to one. Katniss from The Hunger Games of course is one but also Travis from Beautiful Disaster, Link from the Caster Chronicles and Harmony from Bumped.

12. Most beautifully written book you read in 2012? Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein I find this really hard to answer but I have gone for this book because it handled war and the reality of being a prisoner of war really well. 

13. Book that had the greatest impact on you in 2012? Flowers in the Attic by Virginia Andrews This was the most intense book I have ever written and there was so many moments in it that till fill me with emotion. 

14. Book you can’t believe you waiting until 2012 to finally read? This one is quite easy to answer really there is The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness and Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. I am finally able to say I have read Jane Austen and I can now count my self as a true book lover.

15. Favourite quote/passage from a book you read in 2012?

“In approved places, every story serves a purpose. But forbidden books are so much more. Some of them are webs; you can feel your way along their threads, but just barely, into strange and dark corners. Some of them are balloons bobbing up through the sky: totally self-contained, and unreachable, but beautiful to watch.
And some of them- the best ones- are doors.”

Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver pg 152

16. Shortest & Longest books you read in 2012? Callum  by Malorie Blackman was shortest at only 66 pages and the longest was re-reading Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer at 756 pages.

17. Book that had a scene in it that had you reeling and dying to talk to someone about? This in an interesting question, I think I will have to say Flowers in the Attic by Virginia Andrews, it was full of scenes that had my heart pounding and my mind racing.

18. Favourite relationship from a book you read in 2012? I have two answers for this one, my favourite friendship was between Queenie and Maddie from Code Name Verity. My favourite romance however was between Link and Ridley from the Caster Chronicles because it was so dysfunctional yet you could tell they really felt something more for one another.

19. Favourite book from an author you read previously?  The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner by Stephenie Meyer, I finally got around to reading it and I was surprised to find that I actually really enjoyed it. 

20. Best book you read based solely on a recommendation from someone else? The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness. Ever since I started blogging I have read continuous good reviews about this book so I got it out of the library to give it a shot and I had to agree with all the good comments I had read. 

Book Blogging/Reading Life 2012

1. New favourite book blog you discovered in 2012? The Broke and The Bookish is by far my favourite blog of this year because it allowed me to discover lots of other people who blog about books and brought people to my blog.

2. Favourite review that you wrote in 2012? This is really hard to answer as I am still not totally sure what makes a good post but I think my review of Flowers in the Attic is good because I had so much emotion still in me from reading it when I wrote it. 

3. Best discussion you had on your blog? I didn’t have many discussions on my blog, just comments that I replied to. hopefully next year I can change that. 

4. Most thought provoking review or discussion you read on someone else blog? Jacket Musings: Gemma Malley by Words and Pieces I really liked this post cause it brought about the fact that books are judged by their covers.

5. Best event you participated in? This year I went back to the Edinburgh International Book Festival for this first time in years and I had a great time. 

6. Best moment of book blogging 2012? Because this is my first year of blogging my favourite part has been getting comments, every one I get excites me still. 

7. Most popular post this year on your blog? I have picked the post for most popular based on comments so with 10 comments by top post was Top Ten Tuesday – Freebie – Top Ten Classics I Want To Read.

8. Post you wished got a little more love? I think this one has to be my movie review of Twilight Breaking Dawn Part 2 because the film really surprised me and filled me with excitement I really want to know what other people thought of the film.

9. Best bookish discovery? The Top Ten Tuesday meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish as it has really helped me fill my blog and improve my reviews. 

10. Did you complete and reading challenges/goals that you had set yourself at the beginning of this year? My only challenge this year was the Goodread’s 2012 Reading Challenge. I had set myself the goal of 75 books and I am currently on book 84.

Looking Ahead

1. One book you didn’t get round to read in 2012 but will be your number 1 priority in 2013? This year I discovered dystopian and picked up Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury. I haven’t read it yet but I got it as a Christmas present and can’t wait to get started on it.

2. Book you are most anticipating in 2013? Angel Fever by L.A. Weatherly is due out at sometime next year though the date keeps getting moved. I can’t wait to see how this series will end. 

3. One thing you hope to accomplish or do in your reading/blogging 2013? I have a few challenges for next year but I think what I really want to do is read more classics, I think I will aim for at least 6 as this allows me to do some of the other bookish challenges I have signed up for. 

I hope everyone has a great New Year and enjoys a bookish 2013!

The Deja Vu Review – A Short Story or Novella – Cloud Busting

The Deja Vu Review is a Meme hosted by The Book Addict’s Guide that gives us the chance to review books that we read before we became book bloggers. A theme is suggested each week to help us pick a book from our past we might want to rave about and this week that is a short story or novella. I’m not sure if this is really counts as a short story but I have picked Cloud Busting by Malorie Blackman.

Despite his mum’s insistence, Sam doesn’t want to be friends with Davey. He thinks Davey is a first-class, grade A, top-of-the-dung-heap moron. But one day Davey saves Sam’s life and a bond is formed between them. Sam is still embarrassed to be seen with Davey, but little by little he has to admit that when it’s just the two of them, Davey is a lot of fun. But then something terrible happens to Davey.

Told in verse, in first person, the story of an extraordinary friendship that changes two boys’ lives forever – an uplifting tale that truly sings out.

I got this book after reading Malorie Blackman’s Nought & Crosses as I wanted to read more of her work. This of course was very different though as the story is told completely in verse with a range of different type of poetry. This makes it a very short story but its still a really nice story and its message is an important one.

It is the story of how Sam learns to accept people for being different. When a new boy comes to school he bully’s him so that he can fit in but when he get to know Davey he realises that actually he really likes him. However as a lot of children feel, he still wants to fit in and it isn’t till Davey is no longer there that he realises how silly it was to put being popular before true friendship.

I really enjoyed reading this story. It was so different to anything I had ever read before and I felt the simplistic nature of the different types of poetry gave the story power. I am not sure if this is a book for children or teenagers but I think both can learn an important message from it. It is a really quick read and I think if you have a spare hour it is definitely worth reading as it is a simply story told in a beautiful way.

Top Ten Tuesday – Top Ten Books/Authors I’m Thankful For

This week the lovely people of at The Broke and The Bookish have given us the topic of Top Ten Books/Authors I’m Thankful For. This wasn’t the easiest of topics I think. Mostly because I didn’t want to repeat all my favourite books that I have posted about so much already. So I have decided just to go for authors that I think have influenced my reading in various ways.

The Author that got me into reading

1. Roald Dahl. Although I have memories of reading before this it is his books that I remember being the first books that I really read on my own. We read them a lot at school and they were so good I always wanted to read them myself. 

Author Of My Pre-Teen Years

2. Michael Morpurgo Like Roald Dhal Michael Morpurgo was another author my teachers introduced me too and I got addicted to. I read quite a few of his books and I think enjoyed them all. 

Author Of My Early Teen Years

3. Catherine MacPahil Once I got to High school I moved on to Catherine MacPhail books. In my first year I went on a writing course with her and that was me hooked. I looked how her books seemed so much more grown up to me and they were always an interesting topic as well as a good read.

 Author Of  My First Adult Novels

4. Jodi Picoult I picked up my first Jodi Picoult book because one of the main characters had the same name as me and luckily for me it was also an amazing book. After this I felt more able to start reading adult books so that’s why she is on my list. 

 Authors That Got Me Into Reading Series 

5. Stephenie Meyer The Twilight series was the first series of books that I ever finished and my reading habbits have been totally changed ever since. 

6. Darren Shan I read his vampire series along side the Twilight series as I had to wait on Twilight books coming out while I think this series was finished or just about to be. I feel Darren Shan plays just as important a part for me becoming a series lover.

 Authors That Changed The Style Of Books I Read

7. Eleanor Updale I read her Montmorency series about a criminal who becomes a gentlemen to hide his crimes when I was just starting high school and it was the first time I had read anything like this. I tended to read more girly books and ones set in the present so this was a total change. 

8. Sophie McKenzie Once I got a bit older I started reading Sophie McKenzie. I read two of her series, one starting with Girl, Missing and the other Blood Ties and I was surprised to find that even though it was more action I really enjoyed it. I think she opened up my mind to more action based books and possibly the start of my love for dystopian. 

Authors Whose Writing Makes Me Think 

9. Malorie Blackman When I read her Noughts & Crosses series my mind was totally blown. I think it was the first time a book had made me really look at our society and I love her for that.

10. Tabitha Suzuma Although I have only read two of her books so far there are more on my to be read list because the topics of her work are always controversial. I love that she picks such interesting topics that really make you think about a variety of different things in life.

The Booker Award!

This post is a little late but on Friday I was nominated for The Booker Award by Alice at Aliceinreaderland.

I love the tag line of this award, ‘for those who refuse to live in the real world’. I think it reading definitely allows us to explore far more worlds. Thank you to Alice for nominating me for this award 🙂

Now comes my part in the process. The requirements of the award are to post up a list of;

  • your 5 favourite books
  • what you are currently reading
  • and 5 blogs you would like to nominate for the award

So for my top 5 books

  1. Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire

  2. Goodnight Mister Tom by Michelle Magorian
  3. Fordidden by Tabitha Suzuma

  4. Twilight by Stephenie Meyer

  5. Noughts & Crosses by Malorie Blackman

Currently Reading

Beautiful Chaos by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl

Ethan Wate thought he was getting used to the strange, impossible events happening in Gatlin, his small Southern town. But now that Ethan and Lena have returned home, strange and impossible have taken on new meanings. Swarms of locusts, record-breaking heat, and devastating storms ravage Gatlin as Ethan and Lena struggle to understand the impact of Lena’s Claiming. Even Lena’s family of powerful Supernaturals is affected – and their abilities begin to dangerously misfire. As time passes, one question becomes clear: What — or who — will need to be sacrificed to save Gatlin?

For Ethan, the chaos is a frightening but welcome distraction. He’s being haunted in his dreams again, but this time it isn’t by Lena – and whatever is haunting him is following him out of his dreams and into his everyday life. Even worse, Ethan is gradually losing pieces of himself — forgetting names, phone numbers, even memories. He doesn’t know why, and most days he’s too afraid to ask.

Sometimes there isn’t just one answer or one choice. Sometimes there’s no going back. And this time there won’t be a happy ending.

My 5 Nominations 

Should Be Reading

The Librarian Who Doesn’t Say Shhh

The Cheap Reader 

The Picture Book Review

The Bookshelf Of Emily J

What would you’re answers be?

Top Ten Tuesday – Top Ten Bookish People You Want To Meet

So this week The Broke and the Bookish have set us the topic of the Top Ten Bookish People You Want To Me. I didn’t find this one very easy if I am honest but after some thought I have come up with my ten.

Most of my list is authors;

1. Malorie Blackman Malorie Blackman’s is one of the author’s whose work continues to arouse emotion in my longs after reading her stories and I would love to meet her and talk to her about the Noughts & Crosses series. 

2. Anne Frank I know this one is totally impossible but I really would love to meet her and let her know that her dream of being a famous writer came true. 

3. Stephenie Meyer As cliché as it is I do love the Twilight saga and I would love to meet Stephenie Meyer. She changed my reading habits as I am now hooked to reading series. 

4. JK Rowling I can’t imagine many people wouldn’t want to meet JK Rowling. 

5. Sophie McKenzie I think Sophie has a unique way of writing and I would really like to talk to her about why she writes the way she  does and where she gets her inspiration from. 

6. Carol Anne Duffy Although I love to read I really, really didn’t enjoy English class at school. In higher my teacher loved Carol Ann Duffy and I found something I could finally like. I would just really like to thank her for getting my through my higher. 

7. Melvin Burgess The book Junk is actually the only book of his I have read but I know how controversial it was at the time and it would be interesting to hear his thoughts about why he wrote it. 

8. Tabitha Suzuma Tabitha writes about a lot of controversial topics and I would love to know what makes her do this. Particularly why she wrote Forbidden. 

However I would also like to meet;

9. the director of the Edinburgh International Book Festival This must be an awesome job and it would great to see everything involved and find out if its as fun a job as it seems

and of course

10. The Team at The Broke and The Bookish! This blog has been vital in my introduction to the blogging world. The Top Ten Tuesday meme helps me communicate with other book blogger and I would love to here their inspiration for their blog. 

Top Ten Tuesday – Top Ten Books That Make You Think

This weeks Top Ten Tuesday from The Broke and The Bookish is Top Ten Books That Make You Think. They have suggested books that make you think about the world or people or life. I think my list has books that cover all those area’s although I think most books have some element that makes you think.

1. Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma

She is pretty and talented – sweet sixteen and never been kissed. He is seventeen; gorgeous and on the brink of a bright future. And now they have fallen in love. But… they are brother and sister.

Seventeen-year-old Lochan and sixteen-year-old Maya have always felt more like friends than siblings. Together they have stepped in for their alcoholic, wayward mother to take care of their three younger siblings. As defacto parents to the little ones, Lochan and Maya have had to grow up fast. And the stress of their lives—and the way they understand each other so completely—has also also brought them closer than two siblings would ordinarily be. So close, in fact, that they have fallen in love. Their clandestine romance quickly blooms into deep, desperate love. They know their relationship is wrong and cannot possibly continue. And yet, they cannot stop what feels so incredibly right. As the novel careens toward an explosive and shocking finale, only one thing is certain: a love this devastating has no happy ending.

For me this is the most contreversial book I have ever read. Put bluntly it is about incest. Although I don’t like to put my Top Ten Books in an order this is my number one this book because it  is an issue people I have discussed this book with feel very strongly about and I really feel that reading this book will make you reconsider you feelings towards it. 

2. Noughts & Crosses by Malorie Blackman

Two young people are forced to make a stand in this thought-provoking look at racism and prejudice in an alternate society.

Sephy is a Cross — a member of the dark-skinned ruling class. Callum is a Nought — a “colourless” member of the underclass who were once slaves to the Crosses. The two have been friends since early childhood, but that’s as far as it can go. In their world, Noughts and Crosses simply don’t mix. Against a background of prejudice and distrust, intensely highlighted by violent terrorist activity, a romance builds between Sephy and Callum — a romance that is to lead both of them into terrible danger. Can they possibly find a way to be together?

I love this book! Although great changes are occurring we still live in a world where white people are dominant. What makes this book so good is that in a world where black people have all the power we are made to question how we would feel if we were in that position and as a result how people are really feeling right now. I think  Blackman’s idea to change what we see going on is what makes this book so powerful and I hope it makes people think as much as it makes me. 

3. My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult

Anna is not sick, but she might as well be. By age thirteen, she has undergone countless surgeries, transfusions, and shots so that her older sister, Kate, can somehow fight the leukemia that has plagued her since childhood. The product of preimplantation genetic diagnosis, Anna was conceived as a bone marrow match for Kate — a life and a role that she has never challenged…until now. Like most teenagers, Anna is beginning to question who she truly is. But unlike most teenagers, she has always been defined in terms of her sister — and so Anna makes a decision that for most would be unthinkable, a decision that will tear her family apart and have perhaps fatal consequences for the sister she loves. 

This book I think raises several issues that will make you think. Should you be allowed to have a genetically engineered child to help its sibling? Can you put one child through hell to save another? Should a young teenager have rights of their own body? This book I imagine must make parents think the most as in essence it is almost like having a favourite child. 

4. Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

Everybody gets to be supermodel gorgeous. What could be wrong with that? Tally is about to turn sixteen, and she can’t wait. Not for her license — for turning pretty. In Tally’s world, your sixteenth birthday brings an operation that turns you from a repellent ugly into a stunningly attractive pretty and catapults you into a high-tech paradise where your only job is to have a really great time. In just a few weeks Tally will be there.

But Tally’s new friend Shay isn’t sure she wants to be pretty. She’d rather risk life on the outside. When Shay runs away, Tally learns about a whole new side of the pretty world and it isn’t very pretty. The authorities offer Tally the worst choice she can imagine: find her friend and turn her in, or never turn pretty at all. The choice Tally makes changes her world forever.

This book challenges our growing obsession with our looks. What would the price really be if we were all pretty? and is it worth it so that we can all feel equal? Personally I don’t think it would be that simple and I don’t think it is worth risking our health for our looks. 

5.You Against Me by Jenny Downham

If someone hurts your sister and you’re any kind of man, you seek revenge, right? If your brother’s been accused of a terrible crime and you’re the main witness, then you banish all doubt and defend him. Isn’t that what families do? When Mikey’s sister claims a boy assaulted her at a party, his world of work and girls begins to fall apart. When Ellie’s brother is charged with the crime, but says he didn’t do it, her world of revision, exams and fitting in at a new school begins to unravel. When Mikey and Ellie meet, two worlds collide. Brave and unflinching, this is a novel of extraordinary skillfulness and almost unbearable tension. It’s a book about loyalty and the choices that come with it. But above all it’s a book about love – for one’s family and for another

Does loyalty to your family come before love? On You Against Me we have too characters who’s siblings have had more than a large fall out. When they meet they are unaware of who each other is and fall for each other however when they realise who each other is they are caught between how they feel about each other and their families. This books make you think about loyalty. If someone in your family gets into trouble should you have to suffer to? 

6. Red Tears by Joanna Kenrick

Emily Bowyer is a normal, confident teenager. But beneath the surface she has a wretched secret. Because, for Emily, life isn’t as much fun as it would appear. Her friends are going off her and her parents only seem to care about her troubled brother. Tension, pressure, anxiety, anger and self-hatred – where does it go when no one will listen?

Red Tears deals with depression and self-harm. When I read this book self-harm was very openly going on in my school and I think this book does give some insight into why teenagers feel they need to turn to drastic actions. For me the book was very powerful but I think it will make everyone that reads it think. 

7. Roxy’s Baby by Catherine MacPhail

Roxy was shaking with fear. She drew in a deep breath. She would not let her fear take over. She couldn’t. She had too much to lose. She had to be strong, to be brave. For once in her life she had to think of someone other than herself. Roxy is wild, uncontrollable. She hates her parents – and her goody-two-shoes sister. Her only solace is her equally wild friends, Pat, Tracey and Jacqueline. Then there is the night of the party, where she lets that boy kiss her, and more …and Roxy is pregnant. Wilfully, she won’t tell her mother, her family. She decides to run away to London. And in London Roxy is found by Mr and Mrs Dyce. They are understanding, sympathetic, and promise her a way out of her troubles. They will take her to a comfortable place, along with other girls in the same position and look after her and her baby – which is exactly what happens. Roxy cannot believe her luck. But Roxy eventually works out the dark truth of the outwardly genial Dyces. 

When a young teenager gets pregnant what should she do? Teenage pregnancy is becoming more and more common. I read this book many years ago when the issue wasn’t so prominent and I think it shows how easily girls can get into trouble if they feel they have no support no matter what happens to them. It will also make you think about being careful trusting people just because they seem older, friendly and helpful.

8. Looking for JJ by Anne Cassidy

Three children walked away from the cottages on the edge of town toward Berwick Waters. Later that day, only two of them came back. Alice Tully knows exactly what happened that spring day six years ago, though it’s still hard for her to believe it. She’ll never be able to forget, even though she’s trying to lead a normal life—she has a job, friends, and a boyfriend whom she adores. But Alice’s past is dangerous, and violent, and sad… and it’s about to rip her new life apart.

Should you be allowed to have a new live after being convicted of a violent crime? If you were a child and it was an accident shouldn’t you be allowed a second chance? You still have to live with what you have done and trying to be someone else is not an easy way to live. JJ’s story will allow you to consider these questions with a new perspective in your mind. 

9. Slated by Teri Terry

Kyla’s memory has been erased,
her personality wiped blank,
her memories lost for ever.

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?

Also about giving criminals a second chance, Slated is a world where criminals have their memories wiped. However could it be that easy? Is this a solution we could seriously consider for our future? 

10 The Shack by Wm Paul Young

Mackenzie Allen Philips’ youngest daughter, Missy, has been abducted during a family vacation, and evidence that she may have been brutally murdered is found in an abandoned shack deep in the Oregon wilderness. Four years later in the midst of his “Great Sadness,” Mack receives a suspicious note, apparently from God, inviting him back to that shack for a weekend. Against his better judgment he arrives at the shack on a wintry afternoon and walks back into his darkest nightmare. What he finds there will change Mack’s world forever.

The Shack is a story about finding God. Who exactly is this figure? and how can we deal with the most terrible thing that could happen to us?  This isn’t your traditional image of God and it will make you consider the many possibilities for God.

Top Ten Tuesday – Top Ten Books for People Who Like Noughts & Crosses

This weeks Top Ten Tuesday from The Broke and The Bookish is the Top Ten Books for people who like X book. I have chosen Noughts & Crosses by Malorie Blackman. The books I am recommending that you may like if you like this ones are not all one that I think are written similarly but other books that I think challenge the way we think about our society just as I think this book does.

Two young people are forced to make a stand in this thought-provoking look at racism and prejudice in an alternate society.

Sephy is a Cross — a member of the dark-skinned ruling class. Callum is a Nought — a “colourless” member of the underclass who were once slaves to the Crosses. The two have been friends since early childhood, but that’s as far as it can go. In their world, Noughts and Crosses simply don’t mix. Against a background of prejudice and distrust, intensely highlighted by violent terrorist activity, a romance builds between Sephy and Callum — a romance that is to lead both of them into terrible danger. Can they possibly find a way to be together?

In this gripping, stimulating and totally absorbing novel, black and white are right and wrong.

1. Oh My Goth by Gena Showalter

Jade Leigh is a nonconformist who values individuality above all else. She has a small group of like-minded Goth friends who wear black, dabble in the dark arts, and thrive outside the norm. They’re considered the “freaks” of their high school. But when Jade’s smart mouth lands her in trouble—again—her principal decides to teach her a lesson she’ll never forget.

Taken to a remote location where she is strapped down and sedated, Jade wakes up in an alternate universe where she rules the school. But her best friends won’t talk to her, and the people she used to hate are all Goth. Only Clarik, the mysterious new boy in town, operates outside all the cliques. And only Mercedes, the Barbie clone Jade loathes, believes that Jade’s stuck in a virtual reality game—because she’s stuck there, too, now living the life of a “freak.” Together, they realize they might never get back to reality… and that even if they do, things might never be the same

As with Noughts & Crosses this book will make you think about how we judge people on how they look. It is about how we choose to dress at high school though but I think although my of a action book still shows that we should learn about the person not what they look like.

2. Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

Everybody gets to be supermodel gorgeous. What could be wrong with that? Tally is about to turn sixteen, and she can’t wait. Not for her license — for turning pretty. In Tally’s world, your sixteenth birthday brings an operation that turns you from a repellent ugly into a stunningly attractive pretty and catapults you into a high-tech paradise where your only job is to have a really great time. In just a few weeks Tally will be there.

But Tally’s new friend Shay isn’t sure she wants to be pretty. She’d rather risk life on the outside. When Shay runs away, Tally learns about a whole new side of the pretty world and it isn’t very pretty. The authorities offer Tally the worst choice she can imagine: find her friend and turn her in, or never turn pretty at all. The choice Tally makes changes her world forever.

Is also challenging our societies obsession with looks. It is a world were everyone becomes pretty at 16 so we are all the same. However I think it makes you realise how ubsurd it is that we value looks so much that we put our lives at risk.

3. Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma

She is pretty and talented – sweet sixteen and never been kissed. He is seventeen; gorgeous and on the brink of a bright future. And now they have fallen in love. But… they are brother and sister.

Seventeen-year-old Lochan and sixteen-year-old Maya have always felt more like friends than siblings. Together they have stepped in for their alcoholic, wayward mother to take care of their three younger siblings. As defacto parents to the little ones, Lochan and Maya have had to grow up fast. And the stress of their lives—and the way they understand each other so completely—has also also brought them closer than two siblings would ordinarily be. So close, in fact, that they have fallen in love. Their clandestine romance quickly blooms into deep, desperate love. They know their relationship is wrong and cannot possibly continue. And yet, they cannot stop what feels so incredibly right. As the novel careens toward an explosive and shocking finale, only one thing is certain: a love this devastating has no happy ending.

Not about looks but still challenging society Forbidden is also a story about unconventional love. Written like Noughts & Crosses the chapters alternate between characters and provide a powerful love story with a strong message and emotional ending.

4. The Hunger Games Triology by Suzanne Collins

In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV.

Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she steps forward to take her sister’s place in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before—and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that will weigh survival against humanity and life against love

Is a story about challenging the government, survival and love. Although in a dystopian society Katniss wants to change the way certain groups are treated just like the groups in Noughts & Crosses and it leads her into a dangerous life.

5. The Declaration by Gemma Malley

In the year 2140, it is illegal to be young.

Children are all but extinct.

The world is a better place.

Longevity drugs are a fountain of youth.

Sign the Declaration, agree not to have children and you too can live forever. Refuse, and you will live as an outcast. For the children born outside the law, it only gets worse – Surplus status.

Not everyone thinks Longevity is a good thing, but you better be clear what side you’re on. . . . Surplus Anna is about to find out what happens when you can’t decide if you should cheat the law or cheat death

Is about the consequences of discovering the secret to living forever. This is something that a lot of people want and we are already living for longer but this book shows what happens when there are too many people and it is children that are deemed the problem.

6. Bumped by Megan McCafferty

In 2036 New Jersey, when teens are expected to become fanatically religious wives and mothers or high-priced Surrogettes for couples made infertile by a widespread virus, 16-year-old identical twins Melody and Harmony find in one another the courage to believe they have choices.

Will make you see teen pregnancy in a whole new light. In a society where adults pay teenagers to get pregnant for them love is compromised and the main characters are fighting to be able to be who they want to be not just a womb for rental.

 

7. My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picout

Anna is not sick, but she might as well be. By age thirteen, she has undergone countless surgeries, transfusions, and shots so that her older sister, Kate, can somehow fight the leukemia that has plagued her since childhood. The product of preimplantation genetic diagnosis, Anna was conceived as a bone marrow match for Kate — a life and a role that she has never challenged…until now. Like most teenagers, Anna is beginning to question who she truly is. But unlike most teenagers, she has always been defined in terms of her sister — and so Anna makes a decision that for most would be unthinkable, a decision that will tear her family apart and have perhaps fatal consequences for the sister she loves. 

Tells the story of a family when one daughter sues her parents to stop having to help her dying sister. Also written like Noughts & Crosses with alternating chapters it has a similar ability to capture your emotions and will also make you think about how we will do anything for our children.

8. Matched by Ally Condie

Cassia has always trusted the Society to make the right choices for her: what to read, what to watch, what to believe. So when Xander’s face appears on-screen at her Matching ceremony, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he is her ideal mate… until she sees Ky Markham’s face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black.

The Society tells her it’s a glitch, a rare malfunction, and that she should focus on the happy life she’s destined to lead with Xander. But Cassia can’t stop thinking about Ky, and as they slowly fall in love, Cassia begins to doubt the Society’s infallibility and is faced with an impossible choice: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she’s known and a path that no one else has dared to follow

Like Noughts & Crosses is about going against what is expected to be right and falling in love with someone you are not suppose to. When the government decides everything about your life including who you will spend the rest of your life with it your whole life can be turned upside down due to what appears to be a simple technical error that leads to real feelings.

9. Slated by Teri Terry

Kyla’s memory has been erased,
her personality wiped blank,
her memories lost for ever.

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?

This book provides a dramatic solution to dealing with criminals in society. What at first might seem like an appealing solution to a problem we are having to deal with this book provides the dangers that could occur. It includes like Malorie Blackmans book a ‘terrorist’  group that disagree with how society if being disciplined and the impact that has on our main characters life could be just as dangerous as it was to Callum’s.

10. Looking for JJ by Anne Cassidy

Three children walked away from the cottages on the edge of town toward Berwick Waters. Later that day, only two of them came back. Alice Tully knows exactly what happened that spring day six years ago, though it’s still hard for her to believe it. She’ll never be able to forget, even though she’s trying to lead a normal life—she has a job, friends, and a boyfriend whom she adores. But Alice’s past is dangerous, and violent, and sad… and it’s about to rip her new life apart.

Will make you think about how you would feel if you were in the position of having to start your life again as someone new. It will make you decide if you think people who commit very dangerous crimes should be given a second chance, particularly if they offended as children. It is again looking at dealing with crime in society but unlike Callum JJ has a chance to live and prove she can be a useful member of society again.

Callum

Callum (Noughts & Crosses, #1.6)

For world book day this year Malorie Blackman brought out a very short book providing an alternate to the events that occurred during Noughts & Crosses.

Told from Callum’s point of view the book was a really good alternative to what was already an amazing book. I would suggest not reading it unless you have read the book as it is set a fair way through the book, but if you had it is defiantly worth reading. I think it would start good conversations about how she  could have taken the story and possibly debates over which was a better option.