Blogwarming Winner Announcement!

It’s been a busy few weeks since launching sharlenesays & I’m doing my best to line up posts & be as prepared as I can. I got a little distracted this week with Booktube & it’s readathon, Booktubeathon. But I am back on track.

I wanted to end the first month with a bang so I hosted a giveaway. Entrants had to either follow me on twitter, tweet aboutethe giveaway or leave a comment on the giveaway post and I am happy to announce…

~ Alysia Allen ~

who has won an audiobook of her choice from Audible.com.
Alysia, I have sent you an email. Please let me know what book you would like.

I know July hasn’t ended so expect another post this week. Make sure to follow the blog so you don’t miss out on the flash giveaways!

I am so excited. My own blog brings new opportunities, so expect more soon.

final love sharlene

Review: Ink by Amanda Sun & GIVEAWAY

Ink (Paper Gods, #1)Title: Ink by Amanda Sun
Series: Paper Gods #1
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal Romance, Japanese Fiction
Publisher:
Harlequin Teen
Release Date:
 2013
Length: 369 pages (paperback)

» Book blurb
On the heels of a family tragedy, Katie Greene must move halfway across the world. Stuck with her aunt in Shizuoka, Japan, Katie feels lost. Alone. She doesn’t know the language, she can barely hold a pair of chopsticks, and she can’t seem to get the hang of taking her shoes off whenever she enters a building. When Katie meets aloof Tomohiro, star of the school’s kendo team, she is intrigued by him… and a little scared. His tough attitude seems meant to keep her at a distance, and when they’re near eachother, strange things happen. Pens explode. Ink drips from nowhere. And unless Katie is seeing things, drawings come to life. Somehow Tomo is connected to the Kami – powerful ancient beings who once ruled Japan – and as feelings develop between Katie and Tomo, things begin to spiral out of control. The wrong people are starting to ask questions… and if they discover the truth, no one will be safe.

» First sentence
I made it halfway across the courtyard before I realized I was still wearing my school slippers.

I had to comment on this. It sounds so random but we are introduced to Katie’s new life in one sentence. She brings in learning a new culture from this get go.

» Summary
The story is narrated by Katie, the main character, in the first person. The book is set in Shizuoka, Japan. There seems to be quite a lot of detail in the setting, from the school, gardens, shops, local transport. Of course, these might be fiction (I’ve never been to Japan) but it’s written really well.

Japanese culture was a main feature in the book as Katie learns new customs and the language, we learn with her. I took Japanese for a couple of years at high-school so I recognised the phrases and it made me appreciate how the author has included some simple words, like:

“Itterasshai. 
Go and come back safely.”

The use of Japanese mythology in young adult fiction isn’t something I have read before. It’s really interesting to learn a new culture and it’s stories. I’m definitely looking forward to seeing how the story progresses in the next instalment, Rain.

I don’t know much about the author. I believe this is her only series. I would compare this to the likes of Percy Jackson, just because it’s YA mythology. That’s probably where comparisons end. I haven’t read anything like this before.

I really loved this book. She makes a couple of friends at her new school & once a boy comes on the scene, she puts all her attention into it. People might tell you that isn’t the case, but really it is. She lies to her Aunt that it’s a different boy, one that she might approve of. The story seems realistic.

I would guess that the locale is pretty correct too. Lots of people, Sakura not lasting long, the transport, even the not so good side of town. Every city has one of those suburbs don’t they?

There is an emotional side of the book too. Katie feels a connection through the loss of parents and she gets the best advice from the least expected place, when she really needs it. This was one of my favourite moments.

“They tell you you’ll forget how it used to be. You’ll get used to it, that it’s better to move on. They don’t realize you can’t. You’re not the same person anymore.”

Secondary characters really play a big part in giving you information. Like her BFF’s brother who works at a monastery, and Jun, the Kendo champ. All the characters have a role to play. No-one is unnecessary, right down to the pregnant girl drawn on the page.

I’m really looking forward to reading the next book. Ink was really easy to read, even with the use of Japanese, it’s simple to understand and the culture shines through. I have a secret Japan crush. I wanna go there one day.

I would encourage people who want to try a different mythology to read this book. Also people who have lived in their own country who have a secret passion for travel, read this. I do think this is best suited for young adults, or early teens. Older readers might not enjoy or appreciate the high-school crush story as much.

» My rating

5 Leaf
» Author Stalker Links

Facebook: facebook.com/AmandaSunBooks
Twitter: @Amanda_Sun #ink
Website: http://www.amandasunbooks.com/
Tumblr: http://amandasunbooks.tumblr.com/
Blog: http://amandasunbooks.blogspot.ca/

View all my reviews

P.s I’m happy with my new site so far. It’s slowly coming together so for a blogwarming gift to you, I’m running a…

Giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Booktube-a-thon 2014

So I discovered Booktubeathon about 4 hours ago & within minutes of watching Jesse The Reader’s TBR video, I decided ‘I Wanna Do that’!

I spent the remaining hours watching Ariel’s Booktubeathon informational videos on this weeks event & FAQ, and realising I was addicted, started watching a bunch of participant TBRs. I checked out the Twitter hash #booktubeathon & cheered a few people on as they started reading. I also cooked & ate dinner somewhere in all that. A multi-tasker or just a really excited reader who got hungry?

Reading Challenges

In the last hour, I have been trying to figure out what books I’m going to read this week that fits the 7 challenges. They are:-

1. Book with pictures: Fantastic Beasts & Where To Find Them by J.K. Rowling.
2. Start & finish a series: Forgiving Lies & Deceiving Lies by Molly McAdams.
3. Red on the cover: Breakfall by Kate Pavelle.
4. Someone else picked for me: The Gardener by Rudyard Kipling.
5. A book from least read genre: Animal Farm by George Orwell.
6. A book to movie adaptation: Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead.
7. To read 7 books!

Video Challenges
I’ve never done a booktube video before so I can’t do Day 1… But expect to see an attempt at the rest.

Day 1. Show top 3 books I’ve read because of booktube
Day 2. Find the items on three covers
Day 3. Draw a better cover
Day 4. Write a short story using the words of 3 titles
Day 5. Make a rainbow of fave books
Day 6. Find 5 items from 1 book I read this week
Day 7. Show everyone where I’ve read this week

Oh, have I mentioned that Book Depository are sponsoring? There is a list of 100 books that you can get a discount on! Amaze-Balls! Choose any book from the 100 book list, add it to your basket, and then when you’re checking out type “BookTubeAThon” into the coupon code area and you’ll get 10% off! The image below is linked up to Ariel’s so you’re helping her out too! Make the most of the discount & stock your shelves with some great reads!

Free Delivery on all Books at the Book Depository

and with that great news, I bid ye Good Night!

final love sharlene

Swoon Worthy Saturday #2

SWSSaturday is a day for swooning. Swoon Worthy Saturday, hosted by staybookish, is a weekly meme where in we present a fictional boy who has swept us off our feet, given us butterflies, made our heart do acrobatics and driven us absolutely crazy! Because we all need another book boyfriend.

Without further ado, this week’s #SWS and your future book boyfriend goes to:

~ COLE MURPHY! ~

» The Gist
You can find Cole in Claire Contreras’ Darkness series.

The story of Blake, a young woman who suffers heartbreak at this loss of her parents and is going through a journey to discover the truth. It’s an emotional ride and Cole becomes the light at the end of her tunnel. Cole looks good in a suit & tie, has a smooth voice and very protective arms. Blake describes his long brown eyelashes, green eyes, golden cheeks, defined jaw, short brown hair, muscular arms, taut stomach… do you need more convincing?

Cole has a mischievous grin and he’s a little bit of a rule breaker. Does that explain his personality? Not really… but he’s a fun guy to be around. He knows that Blake has trouble sleeping, so he wraps her up in his arms and sleeps with her. There is plenty of sexual innuendo that Blake doesn’t deny, but Cole keeps his distance when asked. He has a heart of gold which shines in his relationships, especially with his brother Aubrey and in the events that take place in their back story. The story really overwhelms your senses, so if you read the series, expect to be flinging your book across the room and then once you’ve calmed your nerves, running to go pick it up. It’s that good.

» Swoon Worthy Moments
Cole says some very sweet things,

“I’m in love with you, Blake. I’ve been in love with you from the moment I saw you. I’ve been in love with you from the day I was born and possibly even before then. I belong to you. My body belongs to you. My heart belongs to you. Please let me make love to you.”

you will fall in love with the phrase,

“I love you to the moon and back.” 

and some very naughty things. This might be the most PG-13 quote:

“Fine. I’ll go back to my room,” he says gruffly, his blazing eyes boring into mine. “Just know that I’ll be thinking very naughty thoughts and doing very naughty things to myself while I picture you naked and wet.” 

Fiction and Fashion list some even better quotes from Cole, so make sure you check out why they recommend Cole as their Book Boyfriend too.

» Celebrity Dreamcasting

The hair, the jawline, the arms, the body… oh my!

 

Enjoy!

final love sharlene

Swoon Worth Saturday #1

SWSSaturday is a day for swooning. Swoon Worthy Saturday, hosted by staybookish, is a weekly meme where in we present a fictional boy who has swept us off our feet, given us butterflies, made our heart do acrobatics and driven us absolutely crazy!

Without further ado, my first SWS goes to:

~ RUSH FINLAY! ~

Rush features in the Too Far series, which is part of the Rosemary Beach series. He also plays a smaller role in the Perfection and Chance series. He was “brought to life” by author Abbi Glines. Everything she writes is amazing!

» Rush does not leave anything to the imagination! We get an idea of how the author visualizes Rush from the cover. He is the son of a famous rock star, has tattoos, body piercings, and a rock hard body.

» Putting physical characteristics aside, Rush is introduced as a ladies man, a party-thrower, sleeps with all the ladies and doesn’t care for an estranged step-sister who ends up on his doorstep. However that hard-ass attitude doesn’t last long as Blaire starts to get under his skin. He transforms into an affectionate, caring, giving man who caters to Blaire’s EVERY want & need. You know what I mean… it’s mind-blowing!

» Rush has many Swoon Worthy Moments, most are of the panty-dropping variety. But as I’m trying to keep this clean, I will leave you with one of the many notes that Rush leaves for Blaire on their wedding day.

“Blaire,
This was my grandmother’s. My father’s mother. She came to visit me before she passed away. I have fond memories of her visits and when she passed on she left this ring to me. In her will I was told to give it to the woman who completes me. She said it was given to her by my grandfather who passed away when my dad was just a baby but that she’d never loved another the way she’d loved him. He was her heart. You are mine.
This is your something old.
I love you,
Rush”

― Abbi Glines, Forever Too Far

Vote for #TeamRush in the upcoming #NACrushTourney14

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