Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Camp Payback- JK Rock (Camp Boyfriend #2)

Alex is sort-of-famous.  The troublesome teen daughter of two 'family lifestyle' bloggers, she can't wait to escape to her final summer camp.  She's determined to make the most of it, live life to the full and break some of the rules.  Her plan is to be outrageous and shock her wholesome parents and her conniving ex boyfriend-her wild summer will be payback.

But then she meets Javier.  Her world turns upside down.  Alex no longer wants to put herself first, and is almost shocked to find that she cares for someone other than herself.  However, she still manages to cause chaos, even if it is unintentionally...

Camp Payback is a coming of age tale, sometimes a bit too pious, but overall an enjoyable tale of the experience of summer camp.  As a Brit this is something I have never experience first hand (except 2 nights at Brownie camp when I was seven, where we slept in a church hall in fusty, festering sleeping bags) and I have always enjoyed books in this genre.  It is the balance between freedom, the parent free existence, and the constraints imposed by other adults.  Like books set in boarding schools, there is that limbo state where boundaries are constantly being pushed. 

I didn't especially warm to Alex, which probably hampered my enjoyment of this book.  However, I really liked Javier, he came across as warm and honest despite his difficult life.  The romance between the two protagonists was sweet, but again my lack of empathy towards Alex didn't make me long for their happy ending.

I found the beginning of this book great, but as it progressed my interest faded.  It wasn't badly written and I quite liked the plot, but Alex became more and more irritating to me as the story went on. 

Overall, I am sure that the teen audience will enjoy this book- I also expect they would overlook some of Alex's character traits which I, as an adult, found annoying.

Camp Payback is out today.


With thanks to the publisher for providing me with a review copy of this book.

Saturday, 26 April 2014

Blog Blitz for The Other Side of Morning by Joanna Lambert

Charlotte Kendrick’s ill-fated relationship with rock star Christian Rosetti still haunts her. The new man in her life, handsome, rich Italian restaurateur Marco D’Alesandro, is everything she wants. But when beautiful heiress Rossana Caravello arrives to spend time with his family as their house guest she wonders whether history is about to repeat itself. Marco insists he loves her and that he has no interest in their guest, but how can Charlotte believe him when everything about his behaviour around Rossana indicates he is lying? Giving him the benefit of the doubt, Charlotte wonders whether his ruthless stepmother Thérèse may be involved, and decides to find out more about the young heiress. However, far from putting her mind at rest, what she discovers leaves her feeling more unsettled than ever about her future with Marco…

From rural West Somerset to the glorious rolling landscape of Tuscany and the Italian lakes THE OTHER SIDE OF MORNING is a story of love, betrayal, deception and ultimate sacrifice.

This sounds like an interesting read....

Friday, 25 April 2014

The Good Luck of Right Now- Matthew Quick

I am possibly the only person in the world who has neither read the book nor seen the film of The Silver Linings Playbook.  I have heard good things about both (and Bradley Cooper-mmmmmm), but have been drowning under review books for so long that I haven't had a lot of time for reading books on my own shelf.

When I saw that Matthew Quick had a new book out I was keen to read it, and The Good Luck of Right Now sounded unlike anything I have read before.  Here's the blurb, which is what drew me to it in the first place...

Call it fate. Call it synchronicity. Call it an act of God. Call it . . . The Good Luck of Right Now. From the New York Times bestselling author of The Silver Linings Playbook comes an entertaining and inspiring tale that will leave you pondering the rhythms of the universe and marveling at the power of kindness and love.

For thirty-eight years, Bartholomew Neil has lived with his mother. When she gets sick and dies, he has no idea how to be on his own. His redheaded grief counselor, Wendy, says he needs to find his flock and leave the nest. But how does a man whose whole life has been grounded in his mom, Saturday mass, and the library learn how to fly?

Bartholomew thinks he’s found a clue when he discovers a “Free Tibet” letter from Richard Gere hidden in his mother’s underwear drawer. In her final days, mom called him Richard—there must be a cosmic connection. Believing that the actor is meant to help him, Bartholomew awkwardly starts his new life, writing Richard Gere a series of highly intimate letters. Jung and the Dalai Lama, philosophy and faith, alien abduction and cat telepathy, the Catholic Church and the mystery of women are all explored in his soul-baring epistles. But mostly the letters reveal one man’s heartbreakingly earnest attempt to assemble a family of his own.

A struggling priest, a “Girlbrarian,” her feline-loving, foul-mouthed brother, and the spirit of Richard Gere join the quest to help Bartholomew. In a rented Ford Focus, they travel to Canada to see the cat Parliament and find his biological father . . . and discover so much more.

I mean- how can anyone fail to be intrigued by that?! 

The Good Luck of Right Now is unlike any other book I have read.  Something about Bartholomew's vulnerability left me with a sense of disquiet, and whilst I was turning the pages I had an uncomfortable, heavy feeling inside me.  His letters to Richard Gere bared his soul, giving me an insight into every thought and feeling he experienced.  It is hard to compare it to any other book as it really is one on its own, but it did remind me of how I felt reading The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime. 

It wasn't an easy book to read-infact I almost found it emotionally exhausting and I did have to put it down a few times to have a 'rest' from it.  This is a testament to how well it is written- it evoked such a strong feeling in me.  To say I enjoyed it would be wrong.  However, I was compelled to keep reading and I cared enough about Bartholomew (and other characters in the book, particularly Max and Elizabeth) to invest the energy into reading this book.

I hope this doesn't come across as a negative review, because it really isn't.  The Good Luck of Right Now is a great example of a book where the reader can get completely into the mind of the protagonist-I just found it difficult being inside the mind of someone as misunderstood as Bartholomew Neil.  However, it is also a book filled with hope, Bartholomew's naivety and literal outlook bringing a charm and simplicity into what could otherwise be out and out depressing.

This is one of the hardest reviews I have had to write, because I am sure my opinion of this book will change as I digest it.  It is extraordinary.

The Good Luck of Right Now is out now.


With thanks to the publisher for providing me with a review copy of this book.

Thursday, 24 April 2014

Say It With Sequins- The Waltz- Georgia Hill

When writer Lucy agrees to take part in a TV dance show, she knows she is out of her comfort zone.  However, she doesn't realise that dancing will only be part of the problem.  She develops a huge crush on hunky swimmer Max, a fellow contestant on the show- but the word on set is that he is gay.

I enjoyed this novella and read it in one sitting.  Lucy and Max were both charming characters- very 'normal' and easy to relate to.  And Max was HOT.  Not as hot as Harri from The Rumba ( he was Welsh, no one was ever going to compare), but he got my heart fluttering none-the-less.

I did find there were mentions of a lot of minor characters that I personally felt were surplus to the plot, but that didn't spoil my enjoyment of this sweet, romantic tale.  It was lovely to get a little update on characters from the previous Say it with Sequins book, The Rumba (you can read my review here ).

There is a wintery, festive backdrop to The Waltz, but don't let that put you off.  Whilst it has a festive feel it could just as easily be enjoyed on a beach in the height of summer.  It is essentially a story of repressed lust, something that can be experienced at any time of year!

If you are missing the glitz and glamour of Strictly Come Dancing, the Say It with Sequins series could be just what you are looking for to fill the void.  Although be prepared- I totally craved butterscotch Angel Delight after reading this book!

The Waltz is out now, published by Harper Impulse.  Find out more by clicking the banner below.


With thanks to the publisher for providing me with a copy of this book in return for an honest review.


Wednesday, 23 April 2014

The Story of the World Cup- Richard Brassey

I live in a house where football is a way of life.  My husband and I first met on an online football forum.  He has a season ticket at Sheffield United's Bramall Lane (as I did too, until we had our son and it became difficult to juggle childcare).  We watch a ridiculous amount of football on TV-not just the big Premiership matches-anything going.  So perhaps it isn't surprising that our son Zachary, who is now six, has developed a minor obsession with the game.
Zachary is a competent reader (reading age of 8/9) and read The Story of the World Cup independently.  He loved the bright, detailed illustrations and the comic book style, and adored the facts he learnt as he read.  Out of nowhere he was asking me if I knew about Pele, or if I could tell him about the stadiums where previous World Cup Finals had been played. Children (especially boys) seem to love facts, and this book is chock full of them-about the origins of the beautiful game, the Jules Rimet trophy and previous World Cup tournaments, winners and notable players.
This would be an excellent book for primary school teachers to use to support a topic on The World Cup.  It might also be suitable to encourage reluctant boy readers.  Although girls can be football fanatics too, as I can attest!
I have looked for more books by Richard Brassey since reading The Story of the World Cup, as it was a fantastic non-fiction text for children-visually appealing and with enough detail to make it interesting without being too weighty.
Zachary says 'It's amazing! It tells you all about when the trophy was stolen'.
The Story of the World Cup is a winner in our house.
The Story of the World Cup is out now, published by Orion.
With thanks to the publisher who provided me with a copy of this book in return for an honest review.

Little Celeste- Dawn McNiff

The Blurb

Eleven-year-old Shelley only leaves her bedroom for two minutes, but when she gets back, there's a real, true-life, lavender-eyed baby on her bed. It's far too noisy, smelly and heavy to be a ghost baby - so whose is it? It can't be her mum's - Shelley would have noticed - but it's not like she's around for Shelley to ask, anyway. She's too busy trying to get her horrible ex-boyfriend Scott ('the Toadstool') back, who Shelley definitely does NOT like as much as her mum does.

But someone's got to look after the baby, and give her a name. 'Celeste' sounds good (in fact, it sounds kind of magical) and so Shelley and little Celeste embark on some rather messy adventures, gain some new friends and realise that maybe some wishes can come true after all...

The Review

I have been spoilt lately by a plethora of fantastic reads for children and young adults.  It is my favourite genre, so I've loved getting to know some new characters and discover authors I haven't read before.

Little Celeste sounded like the kind of book I would enjoy- unusual and slightly fantastical without veering into out and out science fiction.  Infact, although it is a read which has a magical feel, it is very much about family and belonging.  The mystery of Celeste and where she came from had me guessing for quite a while, although I wasn't surprised by the revelation when it came.

This book has a fairytale feel and offers a fresh and unique take on how it feels to be a child in a family-the lack of choice, the longing for independence juxtaposed with the need to be loved and cared for.  Shelley is instantly likeable, although she is vulnerable she is also extremely ballsy.  I am sure readers, particularly girls, will be able to relate to her. 

I loved the imagery in McNiff's writing, my favourite line being 'wow, so many stars...it looks like a huge firework went off and froze in the sky'.  Wonderfully evocative.  I'll be interested to see how she follows Little Celeste-if it is with something else as sweet and engaging I will definitely be seeking it out.

Little Celeste is out now, published by Hot Key Books.


With thanks to the publisher for providing me with a copy of this book in return for an honest review.

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Undertaking Love-Kat French COVER REVEAL

My wonderful friend Kat French has her cover reveal today!  Look how beautiful it is!  Undertaking Love is available for pre-order now at all the usual outlets.

Monday, 21 April 2014

Dash and Lily's Book of Dares- Rachel Cohn and David Levithan

Dash is browsing in his favourite book shop when he finds a red Moleskine notebook nestled in amongst the Salingers.  As he opens the book he is faced with challenges and questions, and here starts a relationship which is part penpal / part confidante.  Lily, the elusive owner of the notebook, fills Dash's thoughts and he can't help but wonder if they would be friends (or more) were they to actually meet.

As a dual narrative text with both Dash and Lily taking the lead in equal measure.  This allows the reader to gain an overview, an almost voyeuristic overview, of events. 

Set over ten December days in New York City, Dash and Lily's Book of Dares has a festive, wintery feel, but don't let that put you off reading it at another time of year.  Although the plot is quirky and interesting, I felt it was very much a character driven story.  I loved that Dash and Lily were both a bit kooky, unashamedly 'bookish' and that even the minor characters were an eclectic mix of eccentrics, 'outcasts' and non-conformists. 

The city of New York is almost a third protagonist, vividly painted in all its majestic glory.  As Dash and Lily visit an array of tourist attractions it gave me pangs, filling me with a longing to return to the Big Apple. 

The only disappointment for me was the abrupt ending.  I was still hooked and then....it was over.  I didn't feel there was a complete resolution, and whilst it didn't spoil my enjoyment of the book, I would have been happier for a more concrete conclusion.

I had read some of David Levithan's work before, but never anything by Rachel Cohn.  I'll definitely be reading more by both these authors.  They have a voice which reaches out to the reader, and I imagine it would particularly resonate with the target teen market.

7.5/10 (would have been more but for the disappointing end!)

Thursday, 17 April 2014

The Guestbook competition with Carina! Win an iPad Mini!

To celebrate the launch of TheGuestbook Carina are giving away an iPad Mini! All you have to do is enter the competition here: http://bit.ly/1ghbojW

Simply enter your details for your chance to win an Apple iPad Mini pre-loaded with all the holiday reading you could possibly need.
Also, make sure you keep an eye out for author Holly Martin’s daily holiday tips and fun over the next month by following @UKCarina

Holly Martin's The Guestbook welcomes you to Willow cottage - throw open the shutters, let in the sea breeze, and please do leave a comment in the Guestbook.

You can buy The Guestbook here, available for 99p for a limited time http://amzn.to/1etluti

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Fan- Danny Rhodes

April 15th, 1989.  Twenty five years ago today.  Nottingham Forest v Liverpool at Hillsborough in the FA Cup semi final.  It was a day which changed football forever. 

In Fan, Danny Rhodes (a Nottingham Forest fan who was at Hillsborough himself on the day of the disaster) has written a novel which explores how the Hillsborough disaster affected so many people.  John Finch, the protagonist in Fan, has never recovered from the scenes he saw as a Nottingham Forest fan at Hillsborough.  Football had been his life- his friendship group had been built around supporting Forest, his wages paid for his weekend jaunts all over the country to support his beloved team.  Written as a dual timeframe novel with flashbacks to the 1988-89 season and with the 'present day' as 2004 (the year Forest's legendary manager Brian Clough died), the reader is given an insight into the troubled mind of Finch.  His ability to work, his relationships and his mental state have all been affected by the tragedy, and as he returns to Nottingham for a funeral he learns how his old friends have coped with the weight of observing such a devastating event.

Fan isn't an easy book to read.  I am a football fan myself and I now live in Sheffield.  I have been to Hillsborough a number of times and sat in the Leppings Lane end during the Sheffield derbies.  I was at an FA Cup semi final myself just two days ago.  That twenty five years ago today, ordinary people just like me, set off to support their team and never returned home-it is heartbreaking.  I have often thought of the fans at Hillsborough that day.  Not just those who died, but those who watched, helpless, as fans around them lost their lives.  Danny Rhodes has taken that thought further, creating a piece of 'faction' which is painful and deeply moving. 

However, as a novel it is superbly written, full of juxtapositions which gave me pause for thought.  It is dark and gritty, as you would expect with the subject matter, but is also incredibly emotive.

Fan is about football.  But it is also about community, compassion, belonging; living, dying, bereavement, PTSD. It is a truly unique book which I am sure was exceptionally difficult for Danny Rhodes to research and write.  I hope it gets the acclaim it deserves.

The 96 will never walk alone.  I sincerely hope that anyone else affected by the tragic events of 15th April 1989 never will either. 

Fan is out today, published by Arcadia.


With thanks to the publisher who provided me with a copy of this book in return for an honest review.

Monday, 14 April 2014

The Duff- Kody Keplinger

The Duff was recommended to me by my friend Anne.  She is a YA librarian in New York City and I know I can trust her judgment.  She said that The Duff would be something I'd enjoy, and because I value her opinion I bought it without knowing anything about it.  I read it in one greedy sitting, becoming totally immersed in it.
Bianca is The Duff- Designated Ugly Fat Friend- in her friendship group.  At least, that is what Wesley says.  She's already been hurt by her ex boyfriend and her crush on Toby, the political activist, is unrequited.   When her family face a crisis Bianca seeks solace in the most unexpected place...Can she overcome her feelings of worthlessness? And will she ever find a boy she can trust who believes she is special and not just the Duff?
When I read the blurb I was worried it might be a bit too close to home for me.  I have always felt inadequate, always been overweight, never been happy with my appearance.  The angst of those feelings during my teens is something I would rather forget than relive, so I wasn't sure if The Duff would be for me.  But Anne had recommended it, so I settled down to read a chapter or two...and then the next thing I knew I had finished it!
I could completely relate to Bianca.  She never seems sure of what she wants, doubts her own choices and wants to be a little bit selfish yet worries about how she will be perceived by others.  As a character she is 'real'-she has flaws, she knows she doesn't always make the right choices, but mostly she is just a girl trying to find her way in life.
Wesley and Toby were total opposites-it is like comparing Arnie in Terminator with Colin Firth at his most bumbling.  Yet as characters they were really well developed, sometime leaning towards the stereotypes of the playboy and geek respectively, but there are definitely boys like these in every school the world over. 
I don't want to give the plot away, but there were times I laughed, times where I wanted to cry and one moment where I almost punched the air in delight!  Whilst this is a YA book, it appealed to me as a thirty-something woman, and I am sure that there are many people within my age bracket that would enjoy The Duff.
As a complete aside, that Kody Keplinger wrote this at age 17- I am envious and in awe in equal measure.  I will definitely be looking out for her other books.

Friday, 11 April 2014

Marooned in Manhattan- Sheila Agnew

Evie Brooks in twelve years old.  She really doesn't want to go to New York to stay with her Uncle Scott.  But it was her Mother's last wish, so Evie leaves Ireland to find herself in a city which feels worlds away from what she knows.  It takes time, but she eventually begins to fall in love with New York, making friends and helping out at Scott's veterinary surgery.  However, Scott's girlfriend Leela doesn't seem happy to have Evie around, infact she makes it very clear that Evie isn't part of her plans...

When I first started this book I was completely engrossed.  Evie was a character I could empathise with and Leela as a book baddy is perfect.  She is so easy to hate!  However, midway through I lost interest a bit-I was still happy to keep reading, but I felt the plot slowed down a bit.  The ending however- that was right up my street.  A full on dramatic showdown which wouldn't have been out of place on a TV soap opera.  There is a sequel in the pipeline, so it'll be interesting to see what happens next for Evie.  Will she stay in America?  Return to Ireland?  Or end up somewhere else entirely?

This book is aimed at age nine upwards, although there is one use of the word 'crap' which I personally wouldn't want my child to read at that age. I would probably say it is more suited for the Y6/Y7 market.

Marooned in Manhattan is out now, published by O'Brien.


With thanks to the publishers for providing me with a copy of this book in return for an honest review.

Thursday, 10 April 2014

The Geography of You and Me -Jennifer E. Smith

Teens Lucy and Owen live in the same New York City apartment block and are thrown together when they are stuck in an elevator when the city blacks out.

The Geography of You and Me follows their stories as they both leave New York for new adventures.  Their bond remains as Lucy moves to Europe and Owen travels America, and the pair communicate via postcards.  It is a sweet, tender story about friendship, love and roots and I am sure this will appeal to both the YA and adult audience.

It is a beautifully written book which captures the protagonists emotions in a way that sweeps the reader into their world.  Lucy and Owen are typical teens-sometimes belligerent and irritating, but mostly just looking for ways to survive the upheavals in their lives.  I was taken right back to my teenage years, which was in some ways a beautiful nostalgic ride and in others somewhat painful!

I loved that Jennifer E. Smith reminds us you don't necessarily have to have known someone for a long time to have an unbreakable bond and that people can be brought together in the most unlikely circumstances.  It is a book which gives me faith in fate and humanity.

A heart warming read which gave me the warm and fuzzies.  An absolute delight.

The Geography of You and Me is out today.


With thanks to the publisher for providing me with a review copy in return for an honest review.

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

The List- Joanna Bolouri

Phoebe Henderson has been single for a year.  She's naturally wary of men, and indeed sex, after finding her last boyfriend in bed with another woman.  She's lost trust in the opposite sex and life for Phoebe is, frankly, the epitome of vanilla.

But new year, new challenge, new Phoebe.  In a conscious effort to spice up her life, she conjures up a list of 10 raunchy resolutions.  What follows is a year of sexual awakening and emotional confusion....

I really loved The List.  Firstly, it is laugh out loud funny.  Loads of books claim to be, but very few actually have me guffawing uncontrollably in public places.  I apologise now to the people on the 44A bus, I know there was one moment where I actually snorted like a piglet.  But if you read this book, you will probably do the same.  Don't say I didn't warn you.

It is quite risqué, has its fair share of 'colourful' language and is out and out explicit (anal sex, anyone?  Swinging?!).  However, The List is about more than just sex.  It's a story of friendship, love, lust, work dynamics...as well as being fabulous fun.  It would be a brilliant holiday read- naughty, but nice.

The List is a reminder of just how much life can change in a year, and for Phoebe Henderson it certainly does.  I am convinced it will for Joanna Bolouri too.  She's written a cracker of a book.  I really hope it is as successful as it deserves to be.

The List is out on Thursday 10th April 2014, published by Quercus.


With thanks to the publisher for providing me with a review copy in return for my honest opinion.

Friday, 4 April 2014

The London Book Fair-Author HQ

The London Book Fair’s Author HQ:
Tuesday 8th-Thursday 10th April 2014, Earls Court, London
Author HQ is the place at The London Book Fair for established and aspiring authors and there is plenty on offer at this year’s Fair. Launched as a response to increasing interest from the self-publishing community, and sponsored by Kindle Direct Publishing, LBF will host a three day seminar programme featuring a fantastic line up of speakers including publishers, authors and agents, who will share their advice and experience on how to get published successfully.
Seminars will cover a whole range of subject areas from advice on how authors can help readers discover their books; the increasing opportunities around publishing short form fiction and non-fiction; contract negotiation and the types of deals first-time authors can expect; through to how to self-publish successfully from the point of view of authors who have already done so; the future of the book in the 21st century; and a session on what book reviewers are looking for, featuring Daily Mail literary editor Sandra Parsons.
Each jam-packed day of seminars will kick off with an Introduction to Publishing seminar, with four experts presenting a whistle-stop tour of publishing in 45 minutes - a quick fire publishing industry overview, with an editor, literary agent and bookseller talking about their specific areas of expertise.  There will also be a daily slot by independent bestselling authors who will discuss using Kindle Direct Publishing and CreateSpace to fuel readership growth.  In addition to the seminar programme, Kobo Writing Life is offering a free professional photo shoot at Author HQ – book your slot online at https://vrcoordinator.wufoo.eu/forms/book-your-professional-photo-shoot-lbf/.
Attendees are also invited to come along and support ten authors who will be taking part in The Write Stuff, a Dragon’s Den-style panel event which will see them pitch their books to a panel of four literary agents.  After each busy day, attendees will be able to enjoy a drink and network with other authors and publishing professionals.
Tuesday 8 -Thursday 10 April 2014

Anna and the French Kiss- Stephanie Perkins

I love YA.  I love romance.  So any book that combines the two, especially the emotional upheaval of that totally overwhelming first love, is off to a head start with me.

Anna is sent away to boarding school in Paris by her author father. She can't speak a word of French, doesn't want to leave her best friend and she is convinced she will hate it.  The book follows her year in Paris- her friendships, her 'long distance relationship' with Toph, adapting to a culture different to her own and of course, that teen staple of first love.

Etienne St. Clair is possibly the closest I have come to a full on book crush since Mr Rochester.  His floppy hair, his small stature, his insecurities-everything about him is attractive and I was falling head over heels in love with him.  No wonder every girl at SOAP is mesmerised by him.  In my eyes he's Harry Styles- cheeky, well liked and full of little quirks which only make him more irresistible.  I can't imagine that there is any girl out there strong enough to fight the Etienne feels.  And I'll be honest, I didn't want to.  And he loves books!  I mean, is there anything more attractive than a boy who loves books?!  No!  Except a beautiful, charming, swoonsome boy who loves books, of course...

However, it wasn't just Etienne that won me over.  I loved Anna, her teen angst spilling off the page, feeling like the proverbial fish out of water in an unfamiliar environment.  The rest of their friendship group were also quirky, likeable and a tightknit team- they are well crafted characters that I wholeheartedly cared about.  I also loved the plot, the 'will they/won't they?' of Anna and Etienne and the glamorous Paris setting.

Overall, Anna and the French Kiss is an atmospheric read perfect for dreamy romantics like me.  Stephanie Perkins took me right back to those awkward days of teen crushes, the agony, the ecstacy, the power of it all. 

It's the perfect YA book.  Wonderful.

Anna and the French Kiss is out now.


Gratuitous picture of Harry Styles, just because in my mind he IS Etienne.

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Q and A with Journey to Rainbow Island author Christie Hsaio including GIVEAWAY!

Today I am delighted to welcome Christie Hsaio to Books with Bunny.  Christie is the author of Journey to Rainbow Island, a fantasy adventure book for children.

How long did it take you to write Journey to Rainbow Island? 

-It took me 8 months to write Journey to Rainbow Island book one. Whenever I felt a block, I would go out into nature- I love going to the beach and hiking and it always seems to help.

Do you find it easy to visualise as you write?

-Yes, it was easy to visualize as I write. I had a clear vision of Rainbow Island from the start, including the Rainbow children, animals and dragon, and all the magical beings and dark creatures featured in the book.

What are your own favourite reads?

-I like fantasy books and romantic comedies; I’m a fan of stories with a positive and uplifting message.  I've been hugely influenced by Asian culture and Asian animated storybooks, which were a big part of my childhood- they all tend to be based in magical and fantastical worlds. I also love historical books, as I'm fascinated by different cultures and the history behind them. 

Which other authors would you compare your writing style to?

-I don’t really like to compare, as I think every writer is wholly unique and has very specific attributes. But in terms of writers that inspire me, I’d have to say CS Lewis and The Chronicles of Narnia.

What is next in the pipeline for you?

-I’m writing the second instalment of Journey to Rainbow Island, and developing the second Journey to Rainbow Island video game app. I was really thrilled at the feedback the first one received after it went on the Apple App store and Facebook, so it made sense to develop a second.

There’s also a film based on the book in the works, and I’m currently doing book signings and events in the US, Europe and Asia- it’s all very hectic, but in the best way!

Hope to see you all at my next events!

The Blurb
New York Times Bestseller Yu-ning thinks her perfect life on Rainbow Island will never end--until a nasty dragon called the Obsidigon returns from beyond the grave. Now her beloved island is in flames, her best friend has been kidnapped, and the island's Sacred Crystals have been stolen. To make matters worse, she must venture into the dark corners of the world to uncover secrets best ignored, find a weapon thought long destroyed, and recapture seven sacred stones--without being burned to a crisp by a very angry dragon. With the help of her master teacher, Metatron, Yu-ning embarks on a dangerous journey to overcome not only the darkness attacking her home, but also the scars of sadness that mark her own heart. And while most people just see a normal kid, Metatron--and a few other unlikely allies--pledge their lives to the dark-eyed little girl with a magic bow and a crooked grin.

Books with Bunny is delighted to be able to have a copy of Journey to Rainbow Island to give away to one lucky winner!  Enter below...and good luck! (UK only)

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