UKYA Abroad

I love reading UKYA books set in other countries because I’m able to read them through a tourist’s eyes and learn about incredible new cultures. There aren’t many of them, but the existing ones are real gems! Stolen by Lucy Christopher is set in the Australian Outback, about a girl who is kidnapped by an older man. The imagery was beautiful and it was easy to imagine what the setting was like, even though I’ve never been there before. The Last Leaves Falling by Sarah Benwell is out TOMORROW and is set in Japan. It’s about a boy called Sora who has ALS…

REVIEW: The Sin Eater’s Daughter by Melinda Salisbury

Now, as The Sin Eater’s Daughter begins to emerge into the wild, I feel a burning pride every time I see someone tweet or write about it. The feeling that comes with, ‘MY FRIEND HAS WRITTEN A BOOK!!’ and a book that I have been waiting to read for months and months. Twylla is seventeen years old, betrothed to a prince, and lives in a castle. She’s also an executioner: the moment she touches someone, they die. Twylla is the Goddess Embodied and each month is forced to lay her hands on the treasonous prisoners in the Lormere castle cells. It’s…

Life Lessons from Suzy P | Suzy P Blog Tour

Hi everyone! I’m Suzy Puttock, and I’m back in the third book in the Suzy P series, Suzy P, Forever Me. And, guess what, I’ve put my foot in it yet again… because I’ve made a promise I can’t keep. Kind of a big promise. To my entire school! Why, oh why, did I say The Drifting would be performing at the Collinsbrooke fundraiser? As if trying to sort out that mess wasn’t enough, I also need to make sure Dad’s birthday bash isn’t a total disaster – especially as he’s already showing signs of a mid-life crisis… Even with my…

REVIEW: The Last Leaves Falling by Sarah Benwell

I feel like The Last Leaves Falling is a friend I’ve watched grow up. I’m so incredibly excited for Sarah and the release of it because I loved it and I know so many of you will too! The Last Leaves Falling tells the story of Sora, a boy with ALS, a neurodegenerative disease that means he is going to die. The novel is so much more than that though – it’s a tale of friendship and discovery, as well as acceptance. Whilst I loved The Last Leaves Falling, I found some scenes very painful for me to read because of…

REVIEW: The Sleeper and the Spindle by Neil Gaimain & Chris Riddell

I read The Sleeper and the Spindle one evening near Christmas and I became totally absorbed. For the half an hour or so I spent reading it, all of me was invested in the characters and plot as the story weaved on. It’s hard to perfectly describe The Sleeper and the Spindle and do it justice at the same time. A darker version of Sleeping Beauty, it’s steeped in mythology and ancient tale. The illustrations by Riddell are beautiful – black and white with gold highlights. The double page spreads were magnificent and I believe the illustrations added a side to the book that wouldn’t be picked…

REVIEW: The Art of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson

The buzz around the release of The Art of Being Normal has been crazy! So many of my trusted friends and fellow reviewers have loved it so the pressure was on when I chose to read it myself. Williamson has created a novel I wish had been written years ago. It’s incredibly brave – I don’t think there’s anything too similar to it published at the moment – and it stands out because of its themes and content. However, I’m sad because I wish there were more books just like The Art of Being Normal. I’m going to make it my…

Me and Mr J by Rachel McIntyre

I was so excited when I received a copy of Me and Mr J to review because I’ve loved the sound of it since it first came to my attention a few months ago. A theme I see a lot in YA is privileged characters that come from a rich background and get whatever they want. I was pleased to read in Me and Mr J that McIntyre has decided to push this trope away and Lara, the protagonist, and her family aren’t in the most ideal financial situation. It was very refreshing to read! The main plot point in Me…

REVIEW: Fashion Assassin by Sarah Sky

I was a HUGE fan of Sky’s debut novel, Code Red Lipstick, and so I was delighted to read the second instalment, Fashion Assassin. In Fashion Assassin, the stakes are even higher as Jessica Cole works to discover Vectra with the setting of Monaco as a backdrop. With bratty models to guard and a deadly mission, Jessica truly is back with even more action. Kickass Protagonist I love Jessica so much! She’s so much fun to read about, and she’s such a refreshing protagonist. Gripping Action Sky’s books are SO awesome. I was gripped for two days and found it incredibly…

UKYA in 2015

  As you may know, I am a passionate fan of UKYA – young adult fiction written by authors born or currently residing in the UK. In the past I’ve run projects through a website I set up, Project UKYA, but this year I’m going to be bringing UKYA a little closer to home and running Project UKYA through Queen of Contemporary. In July, I will have been running #ukyachat for two years and they will be a lot more regular in 2015. The chats are super fun; all you need is a Twitter account and by using the hashtag it’s a…

#readukya – January Titles

I have been planning and scheming away for months, and I’m so pleased that my plan can now come into fruition! #readukya is going to be an online, interactive book club, bringing together the best of UK and Irish authors, bloggers, booktubers, librarians and booksellers. Starting in January, two books will be picked each month and a liveshow and Twitter chat at the end of the month will discuss the two chosen books. January’s theme: Love and War The first book chosen is Vendetta by Catherine Doyle, a spell-binding romance similar to that of Romeo and Juliet. To put it simply, it’s Romeo and…

REVIEW: Code Red Lipstick by Sarah Sky

Distinctive and original, Code Red Lipstick is the outstanding debut novel of a future UKYA star. Sky is the UK equivalent of Ally Carter, with Code Red Lipstick exceeding the Gallagher Girls books in many ways. Jessica Cole’s father is a former spy, having to turn into a private detective after developing MS. When he disappears, MI6 refuse to let Jessica help, so she takes matters into her own hands. On her own in Paris, Jessica’s investigation leads her to find out about Allegra Knight, former supermodel with a lethal side. Her new product, Teenosity, means the start of a nightmare…

REVIEW: Lobsters by Tom Ellen and Lucy Ivison

I’ve wanted to read Lobsters ever since hearing about it at the start of the year. I absolutely adore contemporaries (hence my blog name!) and so I think I’ve always known how much I would love Lobsters. Hannah and Sam, both in the summer before university, have one thing in common: they have yet to lose their virginity. Their summers are filled with adventure, antics and a quest to find ‘The One.’ If I could describe Lobsters in one word I would label it ‘awkward’ in the best way possible. Teenage life is awkward, which makes it such an amazing portrayal…