Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Booktalk: 7 Super powers every book lover should have

In which I write a post inspired by a conversation I had with a friend on Twitter.

This article originally appeared on Women24.com.

1. Astral projection

For when we want to leave wherever we are to find some comfort, and peace and quiet to read.

Also, there are some amazing literary places to explore, beautiful libraries from around the world to lose ourselves in and fantastic international book fairs we could go to without having to pay for an expensive flight.

Oh and if that doesn’t work, there’s always a portkey. In fact, I reckon we should have both options, don’t you think?

Gif image: Charmed.Wikia.com  

2. The ability to mute people on command

Because no book lover enjoys being interrupted.  No really. We absolutely hate it when you do this.

To us, you’re the annoying ad break during prime time television shows.

Nobody likes you and nobody wants you.

Being able to silence you will prevent us from committing homicide, which means everyone involved benefits. You get to keep your life, we get to avoid jail time.

Gif image: Wifflegif.com  

3. A time-travelling machine activator

So that we can visit places from historical periods that we only get to read about in novels.  Just imagine being able to be transported to ancient Egypt, Greece or Rome? 

Or to the era of the Vikings?  

Of course, these periods weren’t without their epic wars, bloodbaths and bloodshed, but that’s the beauty of having a time-travelling machine – you can go back or forward any time you want to.

Gif image:  Photobucket.com

4. Speaking of time, a handy ability to stop time would also be very welcome.

It’s no secret that out almost every book lover fears they’ll never be able to read all the books they’d like to read before they die.

A time-freezing ability would definitely help our cause.  Just as long as it doesn’t automatically age us the moment we un-pause time again.

Gif image: Charmedchosenlegacy.wikia.com  

5.  The ability to read books in any language

Because let’s face it, there are probably loads of awesome books that haven’t been translated into English yet, and imagine if we can get other people to read books from some of our local Afrikaans authors.

How awesome would that be?

Gif image: Oldworldnewgirl.wordpress.com  

6.  Being able to fantastical book worlds (and the fictional characters within them) to life
Sure, it may bring with it a bit of chaos and upheaval, but imagine getting to meet your favourite fictional character and along with all manner of mythological creatures. 

I like to think of it as book necromancy (Yay, this means I can bring Snape back to life). 

Gif image: Tumblr.com  

7.  While we’re at it, can we add speed reading to the list?

Anyone a fan of Criminal Minds?

If you are, you’ll know that Spencer, the profiling team’s resident genius scrolls through a book at a speed that seems to be way faster than light or sound (while still absorbing the book’s contents).

Imagine how many works of literature we could all get through in one night if we all had this ability?

Gif image: Stevewhibley.blogspot.com

That’s just my list. How about you? What super power do you, as an avid bibliophile, wish you could have? I’d love to hear yours.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Author guest post: The Fantastic Beasts (of Of Light and Darkness) and Where To Find Them by Shayne Leighton

In celebration of the re-release of her book, Of Light and Darkness, I’d like to welcome author Shayne Leighton to my blog today. 

Described as a cross between Erin Morgenstern’s The Night Circus (which I loved) and Anne Rice’s The Vampire Chronicles, Of Light and Darkness is a New Adult paranormal fantasy which chronicles this story of Charlotte, a girl raised by a Vampire in a society where all manner of magical creatures reside.

In today’s guest post, Shayne introduces us to the various magical beings that can be found in her book series; from vampires to elves, fairies to shape shifters, each supernatural individual has a role to play. 

Before I hand over to Shayne, here’s some more info about the book, which is out now:

Of Light and Darkness

Raised by a Vampire in a secret society of Witches, Shifters, and Elves, Charlotte finds that she is the freak in her world of magic and wonder.

When she stands before an army of impossible obstacles, the likelihood of survival in this coming-of-age modern fairy tale is slim, resulting in a war between light and darkness.

Charlotte knows no other home than the one nestled deep in the woods of Eastern Europe, where Witches draw spells of enchantment, Shifters throw tea parties, and Elves are the closest in kin.

As genocide and war threatens her life and her home, Charlotte will not allow her one true love to be destroyed.

Fighting for her adopted coven of rogue monsters, she will do whatever it takes to save them...and she'll do it before the sun comes up and light takes over forever!

Add it to your TBR pile on Goodreads

Over to Shayne

The Fantastic Beasts (of Of Light and Darkness) and Where To Find Them

Happy release day! If you're preparing for your first trek into the world of Of Light and Darkness, I thought it might be best to provide a guide of Occult City creatures, some warnings, and prepare you for your journey!

OLAD's different creature sects are as follows...

Elves - They are perhaps the most prominent beings in every Occult City or bordered Magic Order society. In the crowded streets of Prague, they would perhaps be easy to miss, for they appear human enough.

Often times, when they are among the mortal kind, they do well to hide their pointed ears and keep their bright gazes lowered. Careful to upset an Elf, for their powers range from annoying to positively deadly.

Shifters and Weres - Also very common in magic societies, there are Shifters of all kinds, from wolves to rats...and yes...even spiders!

Most are very cunning, though they'd be more interested to snack on their respective natural game. (i.e. if you run into a wolf, don't fear. They'd much rather bring down a stag than to snack on you!) They also appear rather mortal when they are un-shifted, but remember that appearances can be deceiving and not all are benevolent.

Fae -
Fairies and Fae are a little less common, but far more dangerous than the previous two sects. They are nothing like the pretty, winged girls of mortal fairy tales.

Instead, Fae are bloodthirsty with lengthy incisors, sharp points at the ends of their wings, and wretched claws. Pray you never happen upon one on an afternoon of woods-wandering.

Vampires - Even less common than the Fae, they are slowly being wiped out by some unknown forces...though there a few guesses as to who might be responsible. As with Elves, Vampires are not always what they seem. True some are bloodthirsty, cunning, overtly sexual creatures, though they can also be very empathetic.

Never forget, they were once human and are still ruled by their human desires. They are also seen less, for they revert back to their corpse state during daylight hours, though during the night, they are incredibly strong, fast, and beautiful.

Imps / Sprites - Similar to the Elves, though these creatures tend to be shorter. Most are very money-savvy, owning businesses and such. They belong to different groups within their sects (i.e. Water Sprites or Vodnici, Forest Sprites, Fire Sprites, etc.)

Sirens - They are similar to mermaids. At first, they appear to be beautiful women lurking below the surface of the Vltava river. But they are, however, very dangerous, feeding on virgins and drowning men.

There are also many feral creatures, such as dragons, wraiths, river serpents, and such others. It is best to travel magic areas with one who knows the surroundings.

Thanks Shayne!

It certainly sounds like an interesting array of fantastical creatures. I, for one, can’t wait to get acquainted them all.

For more information about Shayne, you can visit her online at the following places:


Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Giveaway: Win your choice of 2 books from my list of 2015 favourites (closed)

Hello lovely bloggers

So this was actually meant to December post, as I planned on doing this in conjunction with my birthday, but then I decided to take a bit of a break (both work wise and blog wise) and opted to keep this giveaway for January instead.
For me, 2015 proved to be a pretty great year in terms of reading and I thought I’d kill two birds with one stone by not only sharing 5 of my favourite reads of the year, but also by offering a blogger a chance to win any two of the titles listed below.

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas (this one’s signed)

Darkly enchanting, sensuous and lush in its settings and descriptions, this book combines elements from two fairy tales as well as a traditional piece of folklore based on an old Scottish ballad, to tell the story of Feyre, a young huntress who finds herself in the fairy borderlands after inadvertently getting herself into trouble

Read the rest of my review over here:

The Dead House by Dawn Kurtagich

This book messes with your mind in so many ways: from its inherent and underlying sense of impending doom to characters whose motives and reasoning border on the outskirts of the bizarre; and dark, ritualistic elements that serve to add a chilling and haunting air to the novel.

My full review can be found here:

Beastkeeper by Cat Hellisen

Forget all you know about the original version of Beauty and the Beast, because Cat Hellisen takes this timeless tale and twists it into a narrative that is as dark as it is hopeful, as bitter as it is sweet and as gloomy as it is bright.

The rest of my thoughts on the book can be found here.

The Casquette Girls by Alys Arden

It’s not often that I’m caught off guard by books, but The Casquette Girls has managed to do so with its interesting and seemingly normal heroine, lore dedicated to the vampires of yonder (i.e. the not-so-benevolent kind) and detailed and incredibly interesting historical aspects that detail life in pre-colonial New Orleans.

Full review can be found here:

The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler

Sarah Ockler’s latest offering has, once again, reminded me just why I adore her books. Her writing, her characters, and the way she draws her stories – it’s all just absolutely phenomenal.  I unfortunately haven’t had a chance to actually review the book, but I am planning to reread it soon because I loved this book so much. Also, this book has mermaid lore, magic realism, cultural diversity and beautifully drawn on relationship dynamics – what more could you ask for in a book?

Add it to your TBR pile.

To enter all you need to do is tell me which books you’re most looking forward to reading this year and why.

Giveaway runs up until Friday, 22 January and is open worldwide.