Saturday, 23 October 2010


I have been very neglectful of this blog so I am taking a hiatus from it to focus on my other blog and also a new writing gig I have.  You can find views of books from me at

Saturday, 9 October 2010

Review: Anastasia's Secret by Susanne Dunlap

Anastasia's SecretAnastasia's Secret by Susanne Dunlap

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Anastasia Romonova has always been somewhat of a mystery. The youngest daughter of the last Tsar of Russia and a descendant of Queen Victoria, Anastasia lived a sheltered life with her older sisters and sickly younger brother. History paints her as the joke maker of the family and the one who was in charge of keeping spirits up. Until recently, there had been speculation as to whether or not the Russian princess could have survived her family's slaughter and there have been many theories.

Susanne Dunlap's debut novel is told from Anastasia's point of view and starts from the beginning of the first world war when Anasasia's life really started to change and her privilege was slowly taken away. The central focus is on Anastasia's friendship and later brief romance with a soldier whom she meets and sneaks out with. Sasha (the young soldier) isn't a particular fan of her father but is intrigued by the princess who seeks his conversation and company. Anastasia appears to be starved for company outside her family circle. As the Romonov's situation and treatment becomes more desperate, Anastasia seeks comfort and information from Sasha, who becomes one of the guards essentially keeping the family prisoner.

Sasha does whatever he can to protect Anastasia - pretending he does not know her as anything more than the princess and at times being purposely sharp tongued towards her. When the situation gets dire and Sasha believes her life really is in danger, he tries to convince her to let him smuggle her, and only her out of Russia and to safety.

Susanne Dunlap has definitely done her homework and used the materials and information already known about the family well: it is known during their capture that the Romanov children formed a friendship with the soliders and Susanne Dunlap has worked this into the novel, giving the soliders personalities and names and showing kindness to the girls.

She has rounded out Anastasia's personality so that she becomes a character rather than some intriguing mysterious historical figure.

I have always had a fascination with Anastasia so this book was perfect for me, all the way through the last chapters I was rooting for Sasha to whisk her away and save her even though I knew that's not how it would happen. The only negative comment I have about this book is I wish the Sasha/Anastasia relationship had been developed a bit more and fleshed out a bit and made more of a feature than it was, while it is always in the background, the book focuses more on Anastasia's everyday life than the romance.

View all my reviews

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

book vlog

Here is my first ever v.log! I was really nervous making this so please be kind! :)

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Review: The Murderer's daughters

The Murderer's DaughtersThe Murderer's Daughters by Randy Susan Meyers

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

How deep does the parent/child relationship go? If you saw your father kill your mother in a drunken argument then plunge a knife into your little sister's chest or you were the sister whose chest he plunged the knife into - could you or would you forgive him? Could you still love him? How would it shape the rest of your life?

These are the questions posed in The Murderer's Daughters.

Lulu believes she is the reason her family fell apart: she opened the door to the apartment - she let her father in on the fateful day he murdered her mother and stabbed her sister. The sense of guilt haunts her through out her life and causes her to feel the need to protect her baby sister who she both loves fiercely and resents for her carefree lifestyle and her need to maintain a thread of a relationship with her father.

Merry, the youngest and Daddy's little girl has vague, blurry memories of what happened. She knows it happened but at the same time can't/won't quite believe all the negatives about her daddy. While Lulu insists their father is as good as dead and maintains the story that their parents were killed in a car accident Merry continues to visit her father in prison.

I wasn't sure about this book to start with because of the subject matter - it's an interesting concept to explore but at the same time needs to be handled delicately and with respect as for many people this scenerio is their reality but the author had obviously done her homework and research because this book was a rollercoaster of emotion and so intricately written. I loved how it was written in the first person and switched from Lulu to Merry and portrayed each of their differing emotions and issues.

Not exactly a light read but definitely a great read.

View all my reviews

Friday, 17 September 2010

Book blogger hop

Book Blogger Hop

It's that time of week again!  The time to discover new and exciting blogs to follow.  This week's funfilled question is:

In honor of Book Blogger Appreciation Week, let's take time this week to honor our favorite book bloggers and why we love them!

So in no particular order - drum roll please - :

Tea Time with Marce - I really just stumbled upon Marce's blog because of the name - I thought it was quirky but she has a great blog to go with it.

Book chick city - one of the first book blogs I really looked at - the features are great such as Where stories are made with author interviews.

These are the two I stumbled upon first and there are so many other blogs which are just incredible which I frequent.

Sunday, 12 September 2010

Top Ten Picks - Feel good books

I'm slightly late for this one this week but anyway here it is:  This week's topic is feel good books.  Books which provoke warm, fuzzy feelings.  Random ramblings created this meme so check her blog out.

Now onto my feel good picks:

1)  Winnie the pooh - who doesn't love this loveable little bear.  Even a cynic could sit down and read this book and still be enchanted.

2) The Notebook - Ah, this book just makes me feel all warm and fuzzy - Allie and Noah are just great, their love suffers but stays strong and lasts the test of time.

3) Charlie and The Chocolate Factory - there really isn't anything else to say.

4) The Rescue - this one's a bit soap opera-ish but still a really heartwarming story.

5) Alice in Wonderland - slightly trippy but what's not to love?

6) Hairy Maclary - I worshipped this book as a child and the author is from New Zealand.  The language is just so flowy and Hairy is cute.

7) The Cat in the Hat - Dr. Seuss was a genius - his language was so rhythmic, delicious and funny.

8) Emma - what would a list of feel good books be without a little Jane Austen?  Jane Austen's writing makes me wish for a time past - a time with flowy, romantic language, gentlemen and the lost art of the letter. 

9) Mary Poppins - I always wished for a nanny like her (not that I had a nanny to begin with) - some singing, motherly figure who'd fix all the familial problems.
10) Charlotte's Web - Wilber was so super cute, Charlotte wise just a gorgeous book. 

Book Blogger Hop

Book Blogger Hop

Go over to to participate - it's free and it's fun ;)

This week's question/topic is favourite post or review posted in the last three months so here's mine: