Posts Tagged ‘Caroline’

Bookish Brits: Six Degrees Of Separation

6degreesThis video is based on a feature I first came across at YA Yeah Yeah (here) and is inspired by the Meme, Six Degrees Of Separation, created by Anabell Smith and Emma J Chapman (here)

Posted by Caroline

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Department 19: The Rising

Will Hill

Sixteen-year-old Jamie Carpenter’s life was violently upended when he was brought into Department 19, a classified government agency of vampire hunters that was formed to deal with a little problem…known as Dracula.
But being the new recruit at the Department isn’t all weapons training and covert missions. Jamie’s own mother has been turned into a vampire—and now Jamie will stop at nothing to wreak revenge on her captors. Even if that means facing down Dracula himself.
The Rising is a fast, furious, can’t-turn-away thrill ride that will suck readers in just like a video game. This riveting second book in the Department Nineteen series is packed with cutting-edge gadgets, international locales, and daredevil action that tumbles ferociously across the page—perfect for fans of Darren Shan and Anthony Horowitz

While the pink, fragile scar tissue acts as a visible testament to the horrors Jamie and his friends experienced that fateful night on Lindisfarne, the hidden physiological trauma is no less indelible. Having turned their backs on any semblance of normality and accepted a life of danger and responsibility in the pursuit of world safety, Jamie, Larissa and Kate are now feeling the impact of their decisions and experiences.

A slick three person unit within the super secret department, they work instinctively together, trusting each other with their lives, but not always their secrets and insecurities. The trio cannot help but have matured in the three months following their withdrawal from society and their absorption in to the classified government department; nevertheless they are teens dealing with the huge emotional fallout from book one, coping with anger, grief and the absence of any real parental supervision and support. Jamie particularly is struggling with balancing his recently commissioned leadership while maintaining his friendships with Larissa and Kate.

The only negative thing I can say about this book is its size! You can’t fail to have noticed that with 700+ pages, this is a big book! I have to admit that while a gorgeous signed hardback graces my shelf I found the thought of starting the book a little intimidating not to mention difficult to manage with my preferred reading posture ( lying on my side if you must know). I found a really simple solution, I downloaded the kindle version!

Despite its length, the pacing of the book was spot on and I never felt bored. Will Hill cleverly manipulates multiple story threads, weaving together heart racing action with gut twisting emotional scenes and informative flashbacks to create a compulsive page turner. I particularly love how the author makes references to historical events and figures, grounding the fantasy world building with our own recognisable history.

After 13 years in the health service with up close and personal experience of most body fluids, I consider myself to have a strong constitution, but even I have my limit and Will Hill writes to it. In Department 19 it was the creative use of violin strings, in The Rising, a scene involving Dracula and a library had me swallowing excessive saliva and pushing my lunch to one side. (In retrospect the unpleasant sensation may be due to the first vampire’s maltreatment of books!) However I don’t believe that the bloodletting is gratuitous, this is after all, a war between vicious, carnivorous immortals (old school vamps) and fragile humans. Rather, Hill’s imagery is so unapologetically vivid that it’s Technicolor.

Verdict: This book should come with a health warning; it will cause your stomach to flip and leave you physically and emotionally exhausted, but I promise that you will love every minute of it! Now time to read something light and fluffy, preferably with unicorns, kittens and rainbows!

Reviewed by Caroline

Publisher: Harper Collins Children’s Books
Publication Date: March 2012
Format: eBook
Pages: 7000/ 1066KB
Genre: Action, Paranormal
Age: YA
Reviewer: Caroline
Source: Own Copy
Challenge: British Book
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Tag! You’re it!

Reviewer: Caroline

When I was tagged by Laura, the blue-haired dynamo responsible for Sister Spooky: Book Fangirl , I thought that it was a great way to get to know a little bit more about my fellow bloggers.

The Rules

  • Answer the eleven questions that were asked of you by the person who tagged you.
  • Make up eleven new questions and tag eleven new people to do the meme!
  • Let them know you tagged them!

Laura asked:

What is your favourite dessert?
I’m a fan of all desserts but my most favourite is Key Lime Pie.

What’s the last book you read that completely knocked your socks off?
I hope that you’re not seriously expecting me to pick just one!
I’ve recently finished Department 19 by Will Hill, which was totally gripping and fast paced and I can’t wait to read the sequel Department 19: The Rising.
I Love  all of Maggie Stiefvater’s  work but my favourite of hers has to be The Scorpio Races. My signed, doodled copy is probably my favourite bookish possession.
The book that totally knocked me off my feet, on to the floor, a left me a snot covered wreck was Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma.

What’s your snack food guilty pleasure?
The most shame full thing that I enjoy eating is Pot Noodles. I don’t have to be drunk or hungover to partake in  reconstituted soya-protein goodness.

When you were little did you have a favourite toy and what was it?
My bike. In the school holidays my siblings and I would be sent off in the mornings, with a packed lunch, expected not to return while it was still light. We would spend all day riding our bikes and exploring the surrounding woods and fields.

Is there any skill or talent you wish you had but just don’t?
I really wish I could speak another language. I learnt German and French at school but I can’t remember any of it now.

What kind of music do you like? Any recommendations?
I like lots of different types of music and will download anything that catches my ear.

What was the last movie you saw at the cinema and what did you think of it?
The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn. I have to say that I squirmed in discomfort for the first 15mins. What was the cheesy elevator music about? Over all I enjoyed the film and I plan to watch the final instalment.

What is your dream job?
At around eleven or twelve I had to acknowledge that, growing up in the UK with terrible vision and a phobia of physics, a career as an astronaut was perhaps a tad unrealistic!
I’m happy to report that I discovered a new passion and I’m currently working in my dream job as a midwife.

What is your favourite kid’s TV show ( now or when you were a kid)?
I LOVE Pepper Pig, which is a good thing considering it’s a big hit among the smaller members of my household.

Favourite ice cream flavour?
Ben and Jerry’s Phish Food- YUM YUM YUM!


If you could visit any place in the world where would you go and why?
I would visit Thisby, in November to watch the Capailli Uisce race and munch on some November cakes.
If your insisting on an actual place in the real world! I would have to say New Zealand. I’ve never visited and it looks like such an amazingly beautiful country.

My questions:

  1. It’s your round at the pub and I’ve asked you to surprise me. What drink would you buy me and why?
  2. If you had to spend the day as a character in a book who would you be and why?
  3. What was the last thing you read/watched that made you cry?( Real tears, preferably with snot bubbles!)
  4. They say that you learn something new every day. What was the last thing you learnt?
  5. Marmite: Love it? Hate it?
  6. Which Literary love interests would you snog, marry and avoid.

  7. What’s your usual order from Starbucks/Costa?
  8. What is your oldest memory?

  9. Paperback, Hardback or Kindle? Which of these is your favourite reading format and why?

  10. What is your favourite quote/saying?

  11. If you could bring back any TV show for another series what would you pick and why?
I’m Tagging:
Lynsey Newton (Narratively Speaking)
Sarah (Feeling Fictional)
Kirsty( The Overflowing Library)
Grete Evans (Book Thing)
Amie Salmon (Welcome To My World)
Caroline (Portrait Of Woman)
Susan Mann
@Book-Geek-Says (So many books, so little time)
Momo (Books Over Boys)
Chris (Wicked Awesomology)
And last but by no means least Lesley from Here!
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