GUEST BOOK REVIEW – Cute Emergency by Tony Heally

Guest Reviewer: Ami  (@mama_roach)

A great addition to anybody’s coffee table, this book is full of cute, and not just required in emergencies. Building on the success of the Twitter account, ‘Cute Emergency’ takes cute to another level – in print form.

The introduction states that since it began, @CuteEmergency has accumulated over 1.1 million followers and continues to grow each day. Fans were asked to submit their cute pet pictures so that they could be printed and shared through a different medium – the good old-fashioned way! What has been produced is a variety of images of animals – some of which, I don’t think are convincing enough to be pets – but nevertheless are exactly what it says on the cover – cute!
Split into useful sections, depending on the remedy required, there is guaranteed to be an image that will make you smile. From sleeping kittens to hugging monkeys, open this book on a rainy day and prepare to be instantly cured.

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Out now from Transworld Publishers Ltd
ISBN: 9780593074169


GUEST BOOK REVIEW – The Scorch Trials by James Dashner

Guest Reviewer: Ami  (@mama_roach)

Dashner has Thomas and the remaining Gladers literally ‘dashing’ through The Scorch after being told that the next phase of the trials are about to begin. The maze was only the beginning. Faced with blistering heat and citizens who have been infected with the ‘Flare’ (a deadly virus that sends people mad), Thomas and the Gladers must decide who is worth their trust. WICKED is good. Or are they? Thomas doesn’t know and neither do the readers, as we, alongside Thomas cannot believe everything we see (or read).

Dashner pushes the boundaries, for both the characters and the reader. Having loved the first book, despite its oddities, such as telepathy and mechanical creatures, its mysteries have remained with me and it is now something I want to solve, alongside the characters.

The book starts positively, with twists and turns along the way, but after a while, the clue-finding gets a little repetitive and disjointed. There are almost too many new characters to keep track of, but we, along with Thomas, must work out who is trustworthy and who won’t survive in The Scorch, so this just adds to the sense of mistrust we feel for WICKED. I only hope that the new characters and plot-twists are relevant to the third and final instalment in this series.

Once, like Thomas, you get used to being outside the Maze, the pieces of the mystery start to fit together… then Dashner throws in some more pieces of the mystery to solve!

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Out now from Chicken House Ltd
ISBN: 9781909489417

GUEST BOOK REVIEW – The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

Guest Reviewer: Ami  (@mama_roach)

The Book Thief is set in Nazi Germany and tells the story of Liesel, whilst she lives at her foster home in a small town called Molching at the onset of World War Two. Here, she meets an array of fascinating characters and as we read, we discover more about the war, but also the individuals who are punished because of it. The town gets bombed. Liesel dies.
Before you complain about spoilers, this book is full of them. The story is narrated by Death and initially I was taken aback by this, as I couldn’t quite follow the narrative. Death is an interesting narrator that reveals the story at the start of each chapter, but the best thing about it is that you need to know how the story gets to that point. Foreshadowing becomes a very clever device to use, even though it reveals the fate of many characters. However, this story is told so masterfully and creatively that you just have to read it and find out how the events took place.

I was drawn in by the characters and their stories. I laughed with them, cried with them and understood their motives, even ones that were morally wrong. Liesel and her book thievery is the main storyline, with Death narrating the fascinating, and sometimes devastating, events around her steals. All of the characters she comes across in Molching are truly believable, with Hans Huberman and Max Vandenberg being the most inspiring characters I have ever read about.
You’ve heard the hype. Now judge for yourself. I am pleased to say that this is my new favourite book. It is an absolute classic, which everybody needs to read. This book left a beautiful message behind. Thank you, Marcus Zusak.

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Out now from Black Swan
ISBN: 9780552773898