Monday, December 14, 2015

What is Mrs Featonby reading these holidays?

Happy holidays everyone!

I thought I would try to post a picture of all the books I read these school holidays. I will also say if they are from the school library, town library, or my own bookshelf.

From the school library FIC SUG. A good light read- girl meets boys and voila!

From the school library FIC TRE. Novel about family, a mystery when one of the twins dies, and living on a secluded island. Not a young adult, so good for more mature readers.

From the school library FIC VAN
A great little dystopian novel- every one is dying from a terrible disease, but Joy appears to be immune!

This one is from the town library. Basically there is a virus so the fancy pants people by a condo/apartment in a silo underground to wait it out.
People get killed, relationships are strained... what's going on?!

This one is also from the town library. A nice little piece of fiction about Kevin who is socially awkward and attends trivia quiz nights.

This is a non-fiction book from the town library and is about how women (and men) in the work force.

This is my own book. It's about a lady that loses her memory and makes some changes to the way she lives her life.

This is a school library book. FIC SMI
Boy + girl in an elevated that has frozen between floors = romance.

This is my book.
Scandinavian crime is my #1 thing to read.

School library- new!
I was lucky enough to be the first to read this novel. Mrs Bichan recommended it to me for my holiday reading and to consider as a Year 13 text- I read it in two sittings!
Rosemary and Lowell have a sister named Fern. And then she disappears.

This is my own book and I bought it on the recommendation of Mrs Bichan. I really like French things (I also have a French degree) and this book combined France + literature =  perfecto. There are also lots of nice characters along this somewhat of a mature bildungsroman.

This is one of my own books (as you can already tell I stocked up for the holidays!) This is a mystery/crime set in a Canadian village on the US border.

This is another book that I bought (I have run out of school library books- sorry!)

This is a crime/mystery book- LOVE.

This was a great novel about a husband and wife (and 17 year old son) travelling around Europe attempting to mend tattered relationships.

J.K Rowling actually writes really well for an 'adult' audience. I love the Strike Cormoran series and could wait to read this one. I wanted a different ending though!

This MAY be my list book before school officially is back next Tuesday... I am trying for ONE more though... fingers crossed!

Keep checking back as I will update on this post as I read.

Happy reading!

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Signing out for the year

Well that was 2015 and for six weeks this blog will remain silent as I sit on the beach and read books, enjoy family and soak up some sun.
It has been a grand year with a record number of books issued out from our school, with a 41% increase in fiction. Who said paper books are obsolete.. not here they arent!
Our top reads in the school for this year

  1. The Maze Runner
  2. Looking for Alaska
  3. Divergent
  4. Gone
  5. All the bright places
  6. Slated
  7. Divine Madness
  8. Class A
  9. The recruit
  10. The Secret Crusade
Our top reader issued 197 books!  This blog has been hit now 92000 times, not bad for a little New Zealand School.
Have a great holidays, be back in February with reviews on my summer reads!
Miss Featonby may post in the holidays- she is good like that!
Here is my favourites for 2015!

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Jungle Book

  Oh this is going to be so good.. Jungle Book that is not cartooned but the real deal. Perhaps over the holidays I actually need to read the original story by Rudyard Kipling, never done that and a classic is always good to chuck in the mix.

A Snow Garden

By: Rachel Joyce
Location: FIC JOY
Genre: Short Stories of Christmas

"Joyce has an unerring ability to convey profound emotions"

“We are at the centre of our own stories. And sometimes it is hard to believe that we are not at the centre of other people’s.” 

This will be my first holiday read, because of Harold Fry and his pilgrimage and I loved Miss Hennessys garden.
This book will be a great starter for the holidays, 7 short stores all based around Christmas, I can lay back before Christmas and warm my reading taste buds up with a short read that makes my mind meander into Christmas cheer with some depth and meaning!

Ananada from says  this about this collection:

‘A Snow Garden and Short Stories’ is definitely a festive must read. It’s so unlike any other Christmas books I’ve ever read. There are seven stories included and each and one of them is so special and magical and nothing like the festive stories I’ve read so far. Unlike most Christmas, that are fluffy and cheery, ‘A Snow Garden and Other Stories’ brings seven stories that are so memorable and poignant. The characters felt so real I thought they’d jump off the pages.

The stories are short yet amazingly complex and each one of them brings a huge message about life, family and love. And of course, all happen during Christmas and you can absolutely feel the Christmas spirit and that Christmas magic. The stories are full of clever symbolism, speaking about big life truths and making you think about your own life and the choices you make.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Dan Carter: My Story

By: Dan and Duncan Grieve
Location: NF 796.333CAR
Genre: The Best First Five- ever!

The next few days I am going to blog my summer reading list. First of the rank is Dan Carters story.
Dan and I have a few things in common- how can that be you ask- I am a female aging( Na kidding about that bit...) librarian from Cambridge. What could possibly have in common- 5 things!
First he is a Cantabrian who grew up on a farm like I did. There are so many cultural attachments to being a farmers kid, I bet he went out in the snow and rescued lambs in September!
Second- he knows about hockey
Third- He thinks Red and Black is a stunning colour combination
Fourth- he is loyal to his province, I so respect that!  and
Fifth- he celebrated like a maniac when we defended the Rugby World Cup.
I cant wait to read this book and learn more about  this humble , modest and understated man  who is not only a legendary rugby player but a darn good man.

This book is a personal account of a New Zealand sporting icon

 who became a world superstar - the greatest fly-

half in international rugby. Dan Carter is the world

 record holder for most test points, has twice been

 named the IRB's Player of the Year and twice New

 Zealand Player of the Year. In this memoir he 

opens up for the first time about his stellar 12-year

 career, looking back on the highs, and, with an

 equal measure of honesty, the lows of his career.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Assassin's Creed - Underworld

By: Oliver Bowden
Location: FIC OLI
Genre:  Fantasy Historic with intrigue, twisted plots that transfer into the Syndicate game! 
Series: Assassin's Creed #8

A disgraced Assassin. A deep-cover agent. A quest for redemption. 

This week in the library we have had two days for the staff only. They come and eat amazing food, lounge on the beanbags, drink good coffee and select books to read for summer. Our long suffering students have to watch from the outside desperate to get there hands on the mellow-puffs and strawberries!
What did the staff go for and demand! Assassin's Creed books- and when they saw this new one, we nearly had an assassination in the library!!! In fact I cant remember who dibs it first, let me know if you read this! So what is it all about.. 

1862, and with London in the grip of the Industrial Revolution, the world's first underground railway is under construction. When a body is discovered at the dig, it sparks the beginning of the latest deadly chapter in the centuries-old battle between the Assassins and Templars.

Deep undercover is an Assassin with dark secrets and a mission to defeat the Templar stranglehold on the nation's capital.

Soon the Brotherhood will know him as Henry Green, mentor to Jacob and Evie Frye. For now, he is simply The Ghost.

Assassin's Creed: Underworld is the tie in book to ‘Assassin's Creed: Syndicate’ and the eighth gripping novel from Oliver Bowden.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Spill, Simmer, Falter, Wither

By: Sara Baume
Location: FIC BAU
Genre: Road trip and pilgrimage with a man and his dog!

“Life never misses an opportunity to upscuttle us, I think. Life likes to tell us it told us so.”

I am excited by this book, a journey about a man and his dog, both broken, both needing redemption and hope.  Dogs have a power, the power to draw out of a man or woman depth of being, whether it be love or anger, joy or sorrow. Our dog Rex did this for most of our family members and this story eloquently written in stunning prose retells another version of a man and his dog set  in the dales of Ireland.

A moving tale of a misfit man who adopts a misfit dog, and how despite what society thinks, for them two wrongs make a right. Narrated by our unnamed misfit man, we piece together the past as we roll through the seasons of the present.
The man has always been an outcast, with developmental disabilities, raised by his father after his mother died when he was baby. When he cries, his father abandons him by the roadside, where he's luckily found and brought home by a neighbor. After that he learns not to cry.
His canine companion is a one-eyed fighting dog, abused by his previous owners and made to fight badgers. Both are shunned by society and so form a wonderful bond, at times funny, at other heart-breaking, but so rock solid that they go to extraordinary lengths to stay together. Poignant and melancholic, this is at heart a love story. With two starcross'd lovers that no man can rend asunder. It also has a dark dry humor running through it. Including my favourite quote comparing OneEye to the saccharine-sweet Enid Blyton dog, Timmy -
"I've never read you any Famous Five. I should, I think you'd like it. I'm trying to remember whether Timmy ever scoffed lumps of shit or savaged guileless walkers. I don't think so."
The characters stay with you long after you've read the final page, a testament to Baume's wonderful descriptive prose. A great great novel, hugely recommended says Helen Marquis

"A heartbreaking and forceful pilgrimage that defines new notions of beauty and captures so intensely the thoughts and feelings that would usually be hidden in isolation. This is a visceral story that consumes the reader in the blinding loneliness of our protagonist and simultaneously delivers liberty through the robust love between man and animal. " Sean

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

The 5th Wave

The 5th Wave (The 5th Wave, #1)Yep another great book is being morphed into a movie. It better be good. Its coming very soon in early 2016.

 As always read the books first!

Four waves of increasingly deadly alien attacks have left most of Earth decimated. Cassie is on the run, desperately trying to save her younger brother.




  (screenplay), (screenplay), 2 more credits »


 , Liev Schreibe

The Rest Of Us Just Live Here

By: Patrick Ness
Location: FIC NES
Genre: Urban fantasy, paranormal, LGBT, satirical contemporary- everything Patrick Ness I suppose

"They'll never know how tough it is, Dawnie, to be the one who isn't chosen. To live so near to the spotlight and never step in it."

There's a lot of fiction out there these days about extraordinary situations that threaten the world—usually it's an attack by aliens, monsters, or vampires, or otherwise the country is in danger because of war, dystopia, or political manipulation. It usually falls to one person, or a group of people, to save the world and solve the problems facing it.

Patrick Ness' terrific The Rest of Us Just Live Here turns that concept on its head according to Larry from

"The Rest of Us Just Live Here" is a bold and irreverent novel that powerfully reminds us that there are many different types of remarkable.

What if you aren t the Chosen One? The one who s supposed to fight the zombies, or the soul-eating ghosts, or whatever the heck this new thing is, with the blue lights and the death?

What if you re like Mikey? Who just wants to graduate and go to prom and maybe finally work up the courage to ask Henna out before someone goes and blows up the high school. Again.

Because sometimes there are problems bigger than this week s end of the world, and sometimes you just have to find the extraordinary in your ordinary life.

Even if your best friend is worshipped by mountain lions."
Sometimes there are problems bigger than this week’s end of the world, and sometimes you just have to find the extraordinary in your ordinary life.

Monday, November 30, 2015


By: Amie Kaufman and jay Kristoff
Location: FIC KAU
Genre: Sci Fi, a dystopic fantasy with romance, creative and very unique!

Visually, Illuminae is an extremely fun and unique kind of book. It's a romantic space opera told through a collection of interview transcripts, diary entries, emails and gorgeous space images .

The year is 2375 and one of the mega-corporations that control much of deep space has just fired the opening salvo in an intergalactic war, destroying Kady and Ezra's planet. Forced to flee on a small fleet of crippled rescue ships alongside thousands of other refugees, the fear of enemy warships chasing them down is at first all-consuming but soon becomes the least of their worries. A deadly plague is ravaging the refugees on the ships; the fleet's AI, which should be protecting them, may actually be an enemy; and High Command is refusing to acknowledge that there may be a serious problem. As Kady plunges into a tangled web of data in search of the truth, she realises that Ezra is possibly the only person who can help her save the refugees before it's too late

"This book is incredible! Definitely the most unique reading experience i've never had. It felt like you were in a video game, or watching a sci-fi movie. I absolutely love the way it was written and all the cool page designs and the way that the world is established is very immersive and you feel like you're a hacker reading into life on this spaceship" Whitney-

Friday, November 27, 2015

A Monsters Call- The Movie

  Guess what is coming to the big screen!!!!
This is going to be amazing and this book was always going to be a movie. As always read it first!

The Death's Head Chess Club

By:John Donoghue
Location: FIC DON
Genre: Historical, WWII, Brilliant read

I was taught chess by my Dad in our lounge, by the fire on cold winters nights in the heart of Canterbury. Chess has warm memories, and as I now use it in the library to teach and challenge some of our young men, I have grown to value its power to give ability to self determine the plays you make in life. I tell the boys that the queen is the AK47, they like that! I am also so proud my Dad taught me this game as well as my brothers, it is something I have reflected on a bit lately, the things my Dad did to give me a chance to flourish. Like Chess in this book, but it was about survival!

Chess is the centre article to this story about guilt, forgiveness and redemption.This is the story  mainly of three men, the 'watchmaker' and Jew Emil Clement, former SS officer and now priest Paul Meissner and Willi Schweninger who worked in the Propaganda Ministry during WWII.
Going back and forth in time between 1943-44 and 1962, the three men are at a Chess Tournament in Amsterdam when their paths cross. Was it fate that they should meet or divine intervention?
As they share drinks and meals together, over time, they start to tell their stories, and we realise how they are all linked. Their stories started slowly, but gradually we learn what happened at Auschwitz as Emil was the 'unbeatable' chess player who's games became, literally, a matter of life or death.

SS ObersturmfĆ¼hrer Paul Meissner arrives in Auschwitz from the Russian front. After being badly wounded he is fit only for administrative duty and his first and most pressing task is to improve flagging camp morale. He sets up a chess club which thrives, as the officers and enlisted men are allowed to gamble on the results of the games. However, when Meissner learns from a chance remark that chess is also played by the prisoners he hears of a Jewish watchmaker who is 'unbeatable'. Meissner sets out to discover the truth behind this rumor and what he finds will haunt him to his death..

This is a story of hatred, unlikely friendship, unspeakable cruelty, forgiveness, healing, redemption, guilt and, of course, chess. A deeply moving novel about an impossible friendship, The Death's Head Chess Club challenges us to consider what might be the very limits of forgiveness and what might be the cost of a lifetime of bitterness.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015


By: Julie Murphy
Location: FIC MUR
Genre: Romance, YA, Your body is yours- be proud if it

Working in a high school I see so many students who feel self-conscious, people who make snide comments about someone's appearance without thinking, and moments of people doubting themselves for whatever reason.

This novel is about Willow (full name Willowdean) who is called 'Dumplin' ' by her mum. Why? Because her mum is an ex beauty queen who basically sees people for who they are based on their exterior. Sound familiar?

Willow rocks. She breaks out against this cruel nickname and even decides to enter a beauty competition that her mum is running! Queue the outrage... *now*...

Yep- she shocks her friend, her mum, and she even gets the hot boy.

Oh and do you want to know Willow's tip for how to get a bikini body? It is nearly summer after all-

Step One- take one body. Your body will do.

Step Two- put a bikini on it.

Done that? Now you have yourself a bikini body.

This was a great novel and I really enjoyed it. Sign up for the summer reading programme and you can even take this one home! Permission slips are in the library, or ask Mrs Bichan or Mrs Mannell.

Legion- Skin Deep

By: Brandon Sanderson
Location: FIC SAN
Genre: Sanderson- thats all!

“Well, when the fear of death seizes you—when the dark thoughts come—you stare the darkness right back, and you tell it, ‘I will not listen to you, for I am infinite Batmans.”

I loved Legion and this is not a genre or author I normally read, but I respect Sanderson big time, he has a huge following with many of our students but most of all my son! This was the series by him I read to find out why he was so popular. I was not disappointed! I was sucked in, I laughed, I was desperate to be in with the crowd that solved the mystery... it was a great read!
Legion I reckon must be named after the dude in the Bible who has many inhabitants, or "aspects".  One man- many personalities with superpowers! This is book number two...

Stephen Leeds, AKA “Legion,” is a man whose unique mental condition allows him to generate a multitude of personae: hallucinatory entities with a wide variety of personal characteristics and a vast array of highly specialized skills. As the new story begins, Leeds and his “aspects” are hired by I3 (Innovative Information Incorporated) to recover a corpse stolen from the local morgue. But there’s a catch. The corpse is that of a pioneer in the field of experimental biotechnology, a man whose work concerned the use of the human body as a massive storage device. He may have embedded something in the cells of his now dead body. And that something might be dangerous…

What follows is a visionary thriller about the potential uses of technology, the mysteries of the human personality, and the ancient human need to believe that death is not the end. Legion: Skin Deep is speculative fiction at it most highly developed. It reaffirms Sanderson’s place as one of contemporary fiction’s most intelligent—and unpredictable—voices.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Extraordinary Means

By: Robyn Schneider
Location: FIC SCH
Genre: Break your heart- Youth Fiction with illness and some loving!

A bitter-sweet, coming-of-age novel that's perfect for fans of John Green and Stephen Chbosky.

Extraordinary Means is a darkly funny story about true friendships, ill-fated love and the rare miracle of second chances.

Tuberculosis is a disease I have seen close up overseas. Most of us in NZ over a certain older age have tattooed scars on our shoulder that informs us we are immunized from TB. New Zealand is now basically clear of this scourge. But back in the day we had plenty of it and as I look out my office window I see a local landmark called Sanatorium Hill  or perhaps correctly now known as Mangakawa. This is where sufferers went to get clean air to rid there bodies of the TB disease. I wonder what it would be like if all the people in that sanatorium were teenagers, suffering, loving, surviving and hoping together.  Extraordinary Means will tell us this story -Robyn Schneider has created a fictional form of tuberculosis that is drug resistant and the story is set in a sanatorium full of teenagers that have contracted it.
Told in Lane's and Sadie's perspectives, we are told how the two first met, how both suffered from a prank then later came together as they shared this awful illness. As they suffer, they both start learning from one another. As the days go by, these two begin a romance, one they didn't see to last forever.

It is interesting to see how one can take different paths when told they have a limited time to live. Unlike many people, Lane took one that many do not take. He took the one that tries to prepare for the future that was not promised. He studied hard and became involved in many school activities. His ambition and goal is to attend Stanford. Yet, he never allows himself to enjoy the little time he has left. Then, we met Sadie. She is completely different from Lane. She loves trouble. Loves to lack school. What is the point? There is no future for her. As they get intimate, they learn that life is worth hoping but most of all it is important to take risk and enjoy the ride. 

“That's all you can do in this world, no matter how strong the current beats against you, or how heavy your burden, or how tragic your love story. You keep going.” 
― Robyn SchneiderExtraordinary Means

Tuesday, November 17, 2015


By: Tom Leveen
Location: FIC LEV
Genre:  YA -  Cyber Bullying

Huge topics are covered in this moving and all to realistic book; cyber bullying, youth suicide, understanding sexuality, and the power of teenagers who hurt other so badly only to protect themselves. It is about being swept up in meanness.

" This is a novel better made for thinking, rather than enjoying--Random is a novel that I'll think about for a while in a way I hadn't anticipated.This novel, is sitting with me--it's taken refuge in my brain."  Jazman- Goodreads

Tori is known as one of the Canyon Seven, a group of teens whose malicious online comments has caused  of one of their classmates to commit suicide. It is the night before her trial begins, and she is busy hating everything about her life. She hates her parents who removed the computer from her room and took away her iPhone, leaving her with a crappy, old flip phone. She hates her brother who stopped talking to her when she was arrested. She hates the reporters who keep pounding on the door wanting her to make a statement.

Her phone rings and Tori assumes it is someone calling to harass her about the trial. Great, a crank call, just when all she wants to do is sleep until this whole thing is over.

Tori doesn't recognize the voice at the other end of the line. When the male voice identifies itself as someone named Andy, Tori still doesn't have a clue who he is. It turns out this Andy fellow has punched in her number at random. At least that's what he tells her. He then tells her he is planning to commit suicide. He describes how he is in his car parked at the top of a mountain road, and unless she can convince him that life is worth living, he plans to drive his car off the cliff.

Can Tori convince Andy not to end his life? Will talking to him help her make sense of the mess she is in and the potentially life-changing trial she faces in a few short hours? 

With all the attention on bullying and the connection to social media, RANDOM strikes just the right tone and its message will resonate loudly! -Sally Kruger

Monday, November 16, 2015

All the Light We Cannot See

By: Anthony Doeer
Location: FIC DOE
Genre: WWII in beauty,in pain,  in heart and in soul

How so apt that on my first day back on the blog I have chosen this PULITZER PRIZE winner. This book is set in Paris, the city of light. Twice in its history it has been shut down, curfew-ed, darkened. Once in WWII when this story is written and the other this weekend when raging militants terminated the lives of innocents in heartless gore. 
This story is one I read on my  recent journeys and as I traveled the story traveled with me. It is beautifully written, it is about about a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II.
It is about how enemy's exist and in mutual respect for humanity they fight for life, they fight for meaning in an arena of death and hate. They fight for a world where  innate reason plays a stronger tune than bitterness and mindless command.
It is about snails, and diamonds, the sea, music, curiosity of learning, the power of art, St Malo, the inquisitive desperation of science, it is about keys and mystery, it is about love and it is about death.
This story is beautiful and in the darkness of today's Paris we all know that there is light shining, glimmering, and maybe today it is not seen, but it will be there, in the stories of  today's' Marie Laure  and Werners. Light always conquers dark, always!

“What the war did to dreamers.” 
― Anthony DoerrAll the Light We Cannot See

" Anthony Doerr writes beautifully about the mythic and the intimate, about snails on beaches and armies on the move, about fate and love and history and those breathless, unbearable moments when they all come crashing together" 
Jess Walter- author of Beautiful Ruins.

I'm Back!

By: Mrs Bichan
Location: In the Library
Genre:  Be the change...

What a journey I  have had. Four different nations in six weeks. Each different, each unique, each one with its own powerful story to tell. Each nation I reckon can be defined by what you eat in it and what you read there. Australia I had an amazing steak, cooked on my own on the restaurants BBQ, self sufficient, hardy and just like Bryce Courtney s characters in The Potato Factory. 
South Africa on the other hand is another story. The range of food is amazing but the seafood is the best, it is beautifully cooked, flavorsome and tender. Nothing in my mind beats a Pamela Joost novel, it is well crafted, tender and leaves you wanting more. 
Tanzania- the food is not great, these people live in tough places and the staple diet is Ugali, a stiff dough made from cassava flour.  It is tasteless. I did not find any books written by Tanzanian authors, I hope one day there will be some as sweet as the local ndizi- banana's, So we made and gifted  two libraries so there diet of literature could be improved and the the flavor of learning and knowledge  enhanced. We have sprinkled the spice of words through books in Magugu and Arusha, and we hope that the libraries we have left behind creates a deep appetite for the love of reading.
India, the spices, the curries, the tastes, the smells. I even think I will get India takeaways tonight- I just want more of that food! The problem is that in New Zealand our spices are old and stale and the food just does not have the vibrancy of the real deal. I reckon Indian writing is becoming as spicy and deep as its food, the huge increase in authors churning our meaningful literature there is amazing and nothing beats the Indian Times. That newspaper is so eloquent, so intensely written, brash, humerus, and leaves you wanting more.. just like curry! Here is an extract
If you are watching computer-generated mayhem in the latest action film or scrolling rapidly on your smartphone, you may start to feel a little off. Maybe it is a dull headache or dizziness or creeping nausea. And no, it is not something you ate. 
A peculiar side effect of the 21st century is something called digital motion sickness or cybersickness. Increasingly common, according to medical and media experts, it causes a person to feel woozy, as if on a boat in a churning sea, from viewing moving digital content.
Cool isnt it...

Anyway here are a few photos of the libraries from start to finish!

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

The Complete Roman Legions

By: Nigel Pollard and Joanne Berry
Location: 937 POL
Genre: History, 
Roman Empire takes over the world (a long time ago, don't worry)

The legions of Rome were apparently among the most awesome fighting forces in history. This book made me realise that. I became very, very impressed with the legions and the history behind all 45 legions ranging from 31 BC to the third century AD.

This book covers all 45 legions and we learn about their own individual wins and losses as they fought for the empire and enlarged its borders. 

The book is divided into three sections and has lovely pictures and diagrams to help explain what was going on and when.

Pollard and Berry have compiled a great book sharing a lot of factual information, but told in an interesting day. 

Tuesday, October 27, 2015


By: Meg Haston
Location: FIC HAS
Genre: Mental health, YA

Another example of a book with a beautiful cover!

Stevie is 17 years old and she is trapped. She is trapped in her body and in a treatment center for eating disorders situated in a desert.
It isn't pleasant in the treatment centre. There are so many rules and regulations and Stevie is watched all the time - when she eats, when she goes to the bathroom, whenever she goes anywhere. Obviously we, the readers, know that she needs to be watched and helped, but Stevie certainly doesn't see it that way.

Stevie isn't planning on staying the 60 days that her dad signed her up for. She plans to escape in 27 days on the anniversary of her brother's death.

This book is about tough topics. It's a tale about a girl with an eating disorder and depression suffering grief over the death of her brother. It was an emotional book about relationships and the inside of a teenage girl's mind.

See You At Harry's

By: Jo Knowles
Location: FIC KNO
Genre: GLBT, Coming of Age, Young Adult

Fern is 12 years old and she feels as though no-one see her; she is invisible. Her family all have better things to do -  her mum is obsessed with meditating, and also helps Fern's dad run the family restaurant, her brother (Holden) and sister (Sarah) are getting on with their lives. Oh, and there is also 'surprise' baby Charlie who is only three.

If it wasn’t for Ran, Fern’s calm and positive best friend, there’d be nowhere to turn. Ran’s mantra, "All will be well," is soothing in a way that nothing else seems to be. And when Ran says it, Fern can almost believe it’s true. But then tragedy strikes- and Fern feels not only more alone than ever, but also responsible for the accident that has wrenched her family apart. All will not be well. Or at least all will never be the same. 

Review inspired by Goodreads, where this book is currently 4.1/5! 

Mosquitoland- Second Review

By: David Arnold
Location: FIC ARN
Genre: Road trip, Young Adult, Coming of Age

Sorry for my absence. Mr three-year old Fergus broke his leg last Tuesday and things have been crazy!

I love the muted colours on the cover of this book. Mrs Bichan always tells me off, but I do judge a book by its cover (!).

This is a road trip novel about Mim Malone finding herself as she travels across America.

Her family collapses and changes and she is forced to go and live with her dad and new step-mom. Once she arrives she learns her mom is sick... back in Cleveland.

Mim hops on a bus and goes. Along the way she meets some very crazy and quirky people. Best of all though, is that we get to learn more about Mim as she confronts her own demons, figure out what love really is, and actually what it means to be a sane person.

I love these type of road trip novels where we learn so much about the protagonist along the way.

Currently this book is 3.98 on Goodreads.

Oops, turns out Mrs Bichan reviewed this book already here but it somehow ended up in my review pile. Sorry about that!

Monday, October 19, 2015

Laughing All The Way To The Mosque

By: Zarqa Nawaz
Location: 920 NAW
Genre: Memoir, humour, religion

I have been reading a lot of non-fiction recently as I found myself always heading to the left when I entered our school library. What would I find on the shelves to the right?

I have already posted some other non-fiction reviews such as 'Human Universe' ( and 'Guinness World Records 2016' (

This time I chose a book about being a practicing Muslim in a Westen society and the trials and tribulations that come along with that.

This book is written by Zarqa Nawaz and details her experiences in living her religion (and trying to explain it) in a Western World.

She shares all of these moments with wonderful humour, and I learnt a lot about both groups of people!

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Black Eyed Susans

By: Julia Heaberlin
Location: FIC HEA
Genre: Mystery, Thriller, Suspense, Crime

I really enjoyed this novel.

This is about Tessa. When Tessa was 17 she was named 'Black-Eyed Susan' as she became infamous for being the surviving victim of a vicious serial killer attack. She helped to put a famous criminal in jail.

Or did she?

Many years later why are black-eyed susans planted outside her bedroom window and carefully tended for? They seem to be a creepy message from the killer. But shouldn't they be safely locked away for good?

What happens next is Tessa agrees to help with the re-opened investigation. She is haunted with bits and pieces of memories from the night. Tess a becomes increasingly worried for the safety of her teenage daughter.

It becomes a race - can she figure out who the killer really is before they get to her?