Top Ten Tuesday – Top Ten Favourite Beginnings/Endings in Books

We have another great topic from The Broke and The Bookish this week asking our Top Ten Favourite Beginnings/Endings In Books. I felt this could be interpreted in two ways as in books you often have the end of the plot before the last page and both could have counted but I’ve decided to go for the last page. Instead of just doing ten endings though I am doing 5 of each because I couldn’t think about one with out the other. Unlike the endings thought my favourite beginnings are defined by the initial statements rather than whole pages.


Harry Potter and The Half Blood Prince by JK Rowling – This has to go at the top of my list because it isn’t the first page that I love but the whole first chapter. I think it’s my favourite start to any book every and is the exception to my list. 


Will Grayson Will Grayson by John Green – Who doesn’t love a book beginning about picking your nose?


Goodnight Mister Tom by Michelle Magorian – This book ended up on my list because my friend said she hated the start of it because it begins with the word ‘Yes’ but to me that makes it totally engaging.


Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen – I’m sure this one will be very popular today but I would be lying to myself if I did say I loved it.


Everything Beautiful by Simmone Howell – The first paragraph of this book is so good because its is just full of the beauty of being young and free.


Rapture by Lauren Kate – Some people have complained the ending of this book was  a little soppy but for me it was the perfect solution to the problem and the last pages encompasses the personalitites of the characters and the theme of the whole series.


Goodnight Mister Tom by Michelle Magorian – This in another book with a perfect ending as both characters finally have what they always wanted but more importantly needed.


Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by JK Rowling – I’m not sure what exactly about this one I like I think its a mixture of it all, Harry giving his money to the twins and asking them to give Ron a gift, his interactions with Molly and Hermione and the wisdom of Hagrid.


Harry Potter and the Order of the Pheonix by JK Rowling –  The ending to this book is so good because after being so dark its so comical, being threatened by Madeye would be terrifying.


Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince by JK Rowling – The last paragraph of this book is beautiful because it shows that the very reason Harry is able to defeat Voldemort, because he has friendship and love that give him hope. 


What Are Your Favourite Book Beginnings and Endings?



Top Ten Tuesday – Top Ten Authors Who Deserve More Recognition

The topic this week from The Broke and The Bookish is Top Ten Authors Who Deserve More Recognition. I found this quite a difficult topic as I wasn’t sure what counted as an author being recognised however I have just gone for the authors I think should be talked about more online as a couple have received awards.

  • Simmone Howell
  • Sophie McKenzie
  • Jenny Downham
  • Catherine MacPhail
  • Tabitha Suzuma 
  • Amanda Hocking 
  • Gena Showalter
  • Cat Patrick 
  • Michael Morpurgo
  • Jamie McGuire

Which Author Do You Feel Deserve More Recognition?

Top Ten Tuesday – Top Ten Beach Reads

The Broke and The Bookish have asked us this week for our Top Ten Beach Reads.This weeks topic is quite a hard one for me because I don’t really go to the beach that often and when I do reading isn’t something I so there. I’ve not quite managed 10 books but I have come up with a list of some books I think may but what people go for when reading on the beach.

  • Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire 
  • Walking Disaster by Jamie McGuire 
  • Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen 
  • Vegan Virgin Valentine by Carolyn Mackler 
  • Everything Beautiful by Simmone Howell 
  • Chasing Windmills by Catherine Ryan Hyde 
  • Heist Society by Ally Carter 
  • An Abundance of Katherine’s by John Green 
  • Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein 

What Are Your Favourite Beach Reads?

Top Ten Tuesday – Top Ten Favourite Covers Of Books I’ve Read

The Broke and The Bookish having given us the topic this week of Top Ten Fourite Covers Of Books I’ve Read. Seen as I did this one last year I’m just going to pick my favourites from the books I have read so far this year. A lot of my reading this year has been re-read so there may be a few the same but there is plenty of new ones too.


  • Girl, Defective by Simmone Howell
  • The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
  • Dead Time by Anne Cassidy
  • Alice in Zombieland by Gena Showalter
  • The House of Silk by Anthony Horowitz
  • Matched by Ally Condie
  • Crossed by Ally Condie
  • Reached by Ally Condie
  • How Girl Guides Won The War by Janie Hampton
  • Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan


What Are Your Favourite Book Covers?

Girl, Defective

Book Blurb

We, the Martin family, were like inverse superheroes, marked by our defects. Dad was addicted to beer and bootlegs. Gully had “social difficulties” that manifested in his wearing a pig snout mask 24-7. I was surface clean but underneath a weird hormonal stew was simmering…

It’s summer in St Kilda. Fifteen-year-old Sky is looking forward to great records and nefarious activities with Nancy, her older, wilder friend. Her brother – Super Agent Gully – is on a mission to unmask the degenerate who bricked the shop window. Bill the Patriarch seems content to drink while the shop slides into bankruptcy. A poster of a mysterious girl and her connection to Luke, the tragi-hot new employee sends Sky on an exploration into the dark heart of the suburb. Love is strange. Family Rules. In between there are teenage messes, rock star spawn, violent fangirls, creepy old guys and accidents waiting to happen. If the world truly is going to hell in a hand-basket then at least the soundtrack is kicking. Sky Martin is Girl Defective: funny, real and dark at the edges.

My Synopsis

Sky life is a bit different from the average teenager. Her father drinks too much and her brother walks about with a pig snout on so she tends to keep to herself because she can’t bring friends home. Her best friend is their 19-year-old ex-cleaner Nancy who comes to sit with her on the roof of their flat smoking and drinking ans sharing weird stories. It is up there that they first see Luke.

When a brick is thrown through the front window of Sky’s families shop things in Sky’s like begin to all link together. A woman from her fathers past comes back into his life. Her brother Gully has a real investigation to get on with. Luke begins working at the shop and Sky realises there is similarities between Nancy and the recently killed girl. Sky just can’t get Mia out of her head and as she tries to get her head around what happened to her she begins to finally find her place in the world. 


What I love about Simmone Howell’s writing is her emphasis on culture. Through out this book music is continually referenced and we learn how much both Sky and her Dad appreciate the LP record. Sky learns about going to local gigs and discovers the world of the fangirl and how powerful that can be.

The characters in the book are also really interesting. They are very original and have their own quirks that make them good to read about. I thought Gully was a particularly good character and his obsession with being an agent really fitted in with the plot of the story. Nancy was also a really interesting character. She embodied the big sister type that many girls look for and she was full of hope and creativity although not without fault. 

Although there was a plot to this story about trying to solve the mysterious actions surrounding Mia’s death and the attacking of shops in town the story was really about Sky trying to find her place. It is really hard for young women to make that transition from being an immature teenager to finding your place in the world and Sky although feels very different to others is still going through the same pains. 

I was really excited about reading this book especially after winning it from Simmone herself. I don’t think it is my favourite of her novels but it I definitely enjoyed it and it is the perfect young adult novel about discovering who you are and where you belong.

Top Ten Tuesday – Top Ten Books I Read Before I Was A Blogger

This week we have another good topic from The Broke and The Bookish, out top ten books from before we were bloggers. I think this is a really good topic for bringing back our old favourites and I have made the effort to try and pick mostly books that I haven’t used before in a Tuesday list.

  • Blood Ties & Blood Ransom by Sophie McKenzie  
  • The Pact by Jodi Picoult 
  • Twilight by Stephenie Meyer 
  • Girl, Missing by Sophie McKenzie 
  • Vegan Virgin Valentine by Carolyn Mackler  
  • Oh My Goth by Gena Showalter 
  • Notes From A Teenage Underground by Simmone Howell 
  • Everything Beautiful by Simmone Howell 
  • Looking for JJ by Anne Cassidy 
  • Over A Thousand Hills, I Walk With by Hanna Jansen 

What Are Your Favourite Books From Before You Were A Blogger?

Girl Defective by Simmone Howell – Twitter Give Away Competition

A couple of weeks ago a discovered that it was just days till Simmone Howell’s new books Girl Defective was coming out. So, of course I went straight on to to pre-order it but I was frustrated to find that I couldn’t seem to find it. I tried a few other sites and then went to Simmone Howell’s website where I found that the release date was on for Australia. I looked around for release dates elsewhere but was unable to find them so I went back to the Australian sites where it was available to see if I could get it shipped to the UK. Unfortunately although not impossible it was going to be very expensive, nearly £40 so that was out of the question. As a last resort I went for the contact email from Simmone’s website and decided to email her asking when the book would be available in the UK. If I am honest I wasn’t sure I would get an answer, so I was very excited when I got a reply for her saying that although the book is coming out in the US next year there isn’t currently a date for the UK. However she was doing a give-away competition on Twitter which she sent me the link to and told me I had a good chance at as not many people had answered. I had not long deleted my Twitter as I don’t really like it but I thought that as I wanted the book I would sign up for a new one and enter. The competition was to tweet about your favourite song and why as there is a lot of music in the book. It took me a while to come up with my answer, I wanted to write something truthful but interesting, so after some thought I settled on Sweet Child of Mine by Guns N Roses as this was the first thing that brought my Dad and I together as people who like the same thing now just family.

I had forgotten when the closing date for the competition was but I kept an eye out on twitter to see other entries and when the winners were announced. There is a goody bag of Girl Defective prizes for the Australian winner and as posting is so expensive a book and CD for the international winner. This morning I got an emailing from twitter with Simmone’s tweet in it announcing that I had one the international prize!. I couldn’t quite believe I had one and I am so excited to get the book and CD. I have loved both of her other books and I am looking forward to reading her new creation. I must admit that the fact I will probably be the only person in the UK to read it for a while to is also exciting but I’m sure my friends will be asking to borrow it too.


Girl Defective giveaway winners!


Thanks to all who entered! I wish I could send my book around willy-nilly – I will say that it is quite cheap on Bookworld if you’re an e-reader … costs the same as two fancy coffees and less than a trip to the movies to see a likely crap Hollywood movie!



@Postteen Sweet Child of Mine by Guns&Roses it was the first thing that brought Dad and I together as people not just family #girldefective
Posted by simmone at 10:36 PM
You can read the full post here including the other winner and her competition entry.
She also did an interview recently about writing which you can find here if you want to find out more about her and some writing tips.

Top Ten Tuesday – Top Ten Authors I’d Put On My Auto To-Buy List

This week from The Broke and The Bookish we have the interesting topic of our Top Ten Authors on my auto to-buy list. I’m afraid I don’t have an answer of ten for this. When I was younger, well in my early teens there was one author I would always buy but now I’m much more fussy.

  • Catherine MacPhail I think may been my only ever auto-buy. However that was when I was in my early teens and I no longer read her work. 

Now I wouldn’t buy any book just because of the author. I only really read books that I think I’ll like and I have to been in the mood for an idea before I’ll read it too. There are however a few Authors that I would always pick up their books to at least see if I am interested in it.

  • Darren Shan I have never read his Demon series but I really enjoyed his books on vampires and I’m interesting in his recent book Lady of the Shades.
  • Sophie McKenzie I really like Sophie McKenzie’s books that explore science such as Blood Ties and Medusa and I have read her Girl! books but I have never been interested in her more girly series.
  • Simmone Howel I love the books she has released so far, even though that is only 2  but I am very excited about a new book coming soon.
  • Cat Clarke Although I have only read one of her books so far I am hoping on read more of her work and would definatly pick them up if I seen her name on them. 
  • Cat Patrick So far I have read the books she has published and I’m excited about a new book coming out in May this year.

Are There Any Authors On Your Auto-Buy List?

Top Ten Tuesday – Top Ten Favourite Characters In X Genre

This week from The Broke and The Bookish we have to pick a genre of our choice and share out favourite characters in that genre. I’m not very good with genre specific topics because I don’t usually pay attention to them but for this I am just going for Young Adult Fiction.

Travis from Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire

Mikey from You Against Me by Jenny Downham

Gem from Notes from the Teenage Underground by Simmone Howell

Cammie from Gallagher Girls by Ally Carter

Riley from Everything Beautiful by Simmone Howell

Grace from Entangled by Cat Clarke

Four from Divergent by Veronica Roth

Mara Valentine from Vegan, Virgin, Valentine by Carolyn Mackler

Bree Tanner from The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner by Stephenie Meyer

Theo from Blood Ties by Sophie McKenzie

Who Are Your Favourite Characters?

Top Ten Tuesday -Top Ten Books I’d Recommend as Good Beach Reads

This weeks Top Ten Tuesday from The Broke and The Bookish is the Top Ten Books I’d recommend As Good Beach Reads. This was a particularly easy one for me as I think books for reading on the beach need to be easy to get into and don’t have too heavy a story line. These are possibly also the most girlie of my books.

1. Vegan, Virgin, Valentine by Carolyn Mackler

2. All American Girl by Meg Cabbot

3. The Poison Apples by Lily Archer

4. Girl, Missing by Sophie McKenzie

5. Angel by L.A. Weatherly

6. Everything Beautiful by Simmone Howell

7. Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac by Gabrielle Zevin

8. Chasing Windmills by Catherine Ryan Hyde

9. Gallagher Girls Series by Ally Carter

10. 13 Little Blue Envelopes by Maureen Johnson