Cloudstreet by Tim Winton

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Rating: 5/5 stars

Published: January 5th 1999 by Penguin Group (Australia). First published 1991.

Genre(s): Fiction; Historical; Cultural; Modern Classic

Pages: 426 (Paperback)

No. 1 Cloudstreet: a broken-down house on the wrong side of the tracks, a place teeming with memories, with shudders and shadows and spirits. From separate catastrophes, two families – the Pickles and Lambs – flee to the city and find themselves thrown together, forced to start their lives afresh. As they roister and rankle, the place that began as a roof over their heads becomes a home for their hearts. Winner of Australia’s prestigious Miles Franklin Award, Cloudstreet is Tim Winton’s great family drama, a twenty-year story of life and love, full of boisterous energy, joy and heartbreak. His visceral evocation of the Australian landscape is nowhere more extraordinary than in this classic.

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Dark Webb (The Dark Webb, #1) by Harry Dayle

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Rating: 5/5 stars

Published: April 6th 2016 by Shelfless

Genre(s): Fiction; Crime; Mystery

Pages: 352 (eARC – Kindle)

“Meet Amy. Should she live, or should she die? Her fate is in your hands! Vote now…”

Reclusive website designer Thaddeus Webb thinks he knows the internet, but a brief excursion into its shadier regions throws up more than he bargained for. He stumbles across a harrowing video of a captive girl, her destiny to be decided by paying voters.

When it becomes clear the authorities aren’t taking the plight of the victim seriously, Thad knows he can’t stand by and do nothing. Could this be his chance to redeem himself for the sins of his past?

Before he knows it, he’s become embroiled in a search that traverses both physical space and cyber-space as he works to track down the un-trackable, trace the untraceable, and try to save the blameless teenager before the vote reaches its grisly conclusion.

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? (09/07/18)

So after weeks (months!) of leaving this blog to collect dust (I had so much going on that running a blog became a chore rather than something I look forward to everyday), I finally sat down and opened my drafts. Sitting in it was an IMWYR I was supposed to post on May 21st. Where did time go?

I guess I’m just picking up where I left off. You will notice only a few eARCs – I read books on impulse rather than based on a predetermined schedule in effort to get over the blogging and reading slump I had in June.

Brace yourselves for some scrolling.

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week.  It’s a great post to organise yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment, and er… add to that ever growing TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started with J Kaye’s Blog   and then was taken up by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn at the Book Date. And here we are!

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Song of Blood & Stone (Earthsinger Chronicles, #1) by L. Penelope (with Q & A!) of blood and stone_l penelope
Rating: 3.5/5 stars

Published: May 1st 2018 by St. Martin’s Press

Genre(s): Fiction; Fantasy; Young Adult; New Adult; Romance

Pages: 384 (eARC – Kindle)

A treacherous, thrilling, epic fantasy about an outcast drawn into a war between two powerful rulers.

Orphaned and alone, Jasminda lives in a land where cold whispers of invasion and war linger on the wind. Jasminda herself is an outcast in her homeland of Elsira, where her gift of Earthsong is feared. When ruthless soldiers seek refuge in her isolated cabin, they bring with them a captive–an injured spy who threatens to steal her heart.

Jack’s mission behind enemy lines to prove that the Mantle between Elsira and Lagrimar is about to fall nearly cost him his life, but he is saved by the healing Song of a mysterious young woman. Now he must do whatever it takes to save Elsira and its people from the True Father and he needs Jasminda’s Earthsong to do it. They escape their vicious captors and together embark on a perilous journey to save Elsira and to uncover the secrets of The Queen Who Sleeps.

Thrust into a hostile society, Jasminda and Jack must rely on one another even as secrets jeopardize their bond. As an ancient evil gains power, Jasminda races to unlock a mystery that promises salvation.

The fates of two nations hang in thebalance as Jasminda and Jack must choose between love and duty to fulfill their destinies and end the war.

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Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J. K. Rowling (Reread!)

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Rating: 5/5 stars. Highly recommended!

Genre(s): Fiction; Young Adult; Fantasy; Children’s

Published: Published September 1st 2014 by Bloomsbury (first published June 26th 1997)

Pages: 332 (Paperback)

Harry Potter’s life is miserable. His parents are dead and he’s stuck with his heartless relatives, who force him to live in a tiny closet under the stairs. But his fortune changes when he receives a letter that tells him the truth about himself: he’s a wizard. A mysterious visitor rescues him from his relatives and takes him to his new home, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

After a lifetime of bottling up his magical powers, Harry finally feels like a normal kid. But even within the Wizarding community, he is special. He is the boy who lived: the only person to have ever survived a killing curse inflicted by the evil Lord Voldemort, who launched a brutal takeover of the Wizarding world, only to vanish after failing to kill Harry.

Though Harry’s first year at Hogwarts is the best of his life, not everything is perfect. There is a dangerous secret object hidden within the castle walls, and Harry believes it’s his responsibility to prevent it from falling into evil hands. But doing so will bring him into contact with forces more terrifying than he ever could have imagined.

Full of sympathetic characters, wildly imaginative situations, and countless exciting details, the first installment in the series assembles an unforgettable magical world and sets the stage for many high-stakes adventures to come.

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Divergent (Divergent, #1) by Veronica Roth

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Rating: 5/5 stars.

Published: Published November 21st 2013 by HarperCollins Children’s Books

Genre(s): Fiction; Young Adult; Dystopian; Science Fiction; Fantasy

Pages: 489 (Paperback)

“Beatrice Prior is on the brink of a decision that will change her life. In a society divided into factions all are forced to choose where they belong. And the choice Tris makes shocks everyone, including herself.

Once decisions are made, the new members are forced to undergo extreme initiation tests with devastating consequences. As their experience transforms them, Tris must determine who her friends are – and if the man who both threatens and protects her is really on her side.

Because Tris has a deadly secret. And as growing conflict threatens to unravel their seemingly perfect society, this secret might save those Tris loves… or it might destroy her.”

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No One Ever Asked by Katie Ganshert one ever asked_katie ganshert
Rating: 5/5 stars. Highly recommended!

Published: April 3rd 2018 by WaterBrook

Genre(s): Fiction; Christian Fiction; Contemporary

Pages: 352 (eARC – Kindle)

“Challenging perceptions of discrimination and prejudice, this emotionally resonant drama for readers of Lisa Wingate and Jodi Picoult explores three different women navigating challenges in a changing school district–and in their lives.

When an impoverished school district loses its accreditation and the affluent community of Crystal Ridge has no choice but to open their school doors, the lives of three very different women converge: Camille Gray–the wife of an executive, mother of three, long-standing PTA chairwoman and champion fundraiser–faced with a shocking discovery that threatens to tear her picture-perfect world apart at the seams. Jen Covington, the career nurse whose long, painful journey to motherhood finally resulted in adoption but she is struggling with a happily-ever-after so much harder than she anticipated. Twenty-two-year-old Anaya Jones–the first woman in her family to graduate college and a brand new teacher at Crystal Ridge’s top elementary school, unprepared for the powder-keg situation she’s stepped into. Tensions rise within and without, culminating in an unforeseen event that impacts them all. This story explores the implicit biases impacting American society, and asks the ultimate question: What does it mean to be human? Why are we so quick to put labels on each other and categorize people as “this” or “that”, when such complexity exists in each person?”

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