Book Reviews, Books and Me

July Reads Round Up


A quick summary of my July reads with a link to the full reviews:

Paper and Fire by Rachel Caine

13457784_1200438010007614_688908890_nFull Review: Paper and Fire

I gave this book 5/5. Fast paced, action packed, and a perfect follow on from book one, Ink and Bone. Wonderful world building and character development. Caine has an effortless skill for constructing raw, unique relationships.

13 Minutes by Sarah Pinborough

13650518_1220446014673480_1117847994_nFull Review: 13 Minutes

I gave this book 4/5. Well thought out narrative, and suspense created with multiple POVs. One well crafted, complex character, and a character I couldn’t warm to. An ending to blow your socks off.


The Bone Sparrow by Zana Fraillon

13689855_1225415827509832_980483439_nFull Review: The Bone Sparrow

I gave this book 4/5. Important narrative about refugees in detention centres in Australia. Fraillon captures the voice of 9 year old Subhi perfectly. Slow progressing read, but powerful message, and well developed characters.


Demon Seed by Dean Koontz

13695146_1225467877504627_2098292308_nFull Review: Demon Seed

I gave this book 3.5/5. Not one of Koontz’s best. A great concept that freaked me out more than a little, but not enough. Koontz captured the narcissitic, psychotic voice of ‘Proteus’, an highly intelligent AI system. Quick, easy read.


A Strange Little Place by Brennan Storr

13689680_1225475884170493_1555835858_nFull Review: A Strange Little Place

I gave this book 3/5. Some stories gave me goosebumps, others were not so believable. A documentary style book, covering a plethora of goings on in Revelstoke. The author’s research and time spent on this novel is commendable. Probably more interesting for those who live in Revelstoke, or who know of the area

Dancing in the Rain by Lynn Joseph

13819764_1230403857011029_1007927097_nFull Review: Dancing in the Rain

I gave this book 4/5. Narrative about loss, grief, and healing is handled sensitively and with love. An important read for older children and teens, highlighting the aftermath of the 9/11 terror attacks through the eyes of two children. A book for the next generation.

Looking For Alaska by John Green

13866835_1234389263279155_920167611_nFull Review: Looking for Alaska

I gave this book 3.5/5. Slow starter and the main conflict was over fairly quickly. The before and after design for the narrative was interesting and worked. Alaska’s character was refreshing in context with other more introverted characters. A YA read that can transcend age, but took a little getting in to.


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Book Reviews, Books and Me

Review: Paper and Fire by Rachel Caine


Paper and Fire (The Great Library #2) by Rachel Caine 5/5

13457784_1200438010007614_688908890_nWith an iron fist, The Great Library controls the knowledge of the world, ruthlessly stamping out all rebellion, forbidding the personal ownership of books in the name of the greater good.

Jess Brightwell has survived his introduction to the sinister, seductive world of the Library, but serving in its army is nothing like he envisioned. His life and the lives of those he cares for have been altered forever. His best friend is lost, and Morgan, the girl he loves, is locked away in the Iron Tower and doomed to a life apart.

Embarking on a mission to save one of their own, Jess and his band of allies make one wrong move and suddenly find themselves hunted by the Library’s deadly automata and forced to flee Alexandria, all the way to London.

But Jess’s home isn’t safe anymore. The Welsh army is coming, London is burning, and soon, Jess must choose between his friends, his family, or the Library willing to sacrifice anything and anyone in the search for ultimate control.

Thanks go to Berkley Publishing Group and Netgalley for giving me a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

Paper and Fire is due for release on July 5th 2016.


Book one, Ink and Bone, introduced us to a world where the Great Library of Alexandria was never destroyed and knowledge is governed and seen as power. But with power comes corruption. Book two, Paper and Fire, kicks off with Jess, who is still dealing with the loss of his best friend, and knowing that the girl he loves is locked away in the Iron Tower against her will.

Caine’s ability to write believable, diverse characters is just divine. I enjoyed coming into book two and feeling like I was reuniting with old friends. I knew the dynamics and the respect and trust between the characters from book one. I love love love the intimate relationships in this book- Wolfe and Santi, Jess and Morgan, even Khalila and Dario. There is something so honest and unique in each.

The narrative starts with a welcome revelation. Book one leaves us thinking one thing and book two blows it out of the water, setting the ball rolling for this epic novel. This revelation also proves all the main character’s loyalty and bravery within a few chapters. The story was well paced and action packed.

The concept is still as original as ever, never verging on the ordinary with imaginative and innovative world building. What more do you want?

You must read this series.

I need book three, like, yesterday!!

The opinions expressed here are those of K.J.Chapman and no other parties.

All books reviewed on this blog have been read by K.J.Chapman

K.J.Chapman has not been paid for this review.


Book Reviews

Review: Ink and Bone by Rachel Caine

Ink and Bone (The Great Library #1) by Rachel Caine 4.5/5

13335321_1190571037660978_786603763_nRuthless and supremely powerful, the Great Library is now a presence in every major city, governing the flow of knowledge to the masses. Alchemy allows the Library to deliver the content of the greatest works of history instantly—but the personal ownership of books is expressly forbidden.

Jess Brightwell believes in the value of the Library, but the majority of his knowledge comes from illegal books obtained by his family, who are involved in the thriving black market. Jess has been sent to be his family’s spy, but his loyalties are tested in the final months of his training to enter the Library’s service.

When his friend inadvertently commits heresy by creating a device that could change the world, Jess discovers that those who control the Great Library believe that knowledge is more valuable than any human life—and soon both heretics and books will burn…


Thanks go to Berkley Publishing Group and Netgalley for offering me a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

I had this book explained to me as a book about books. What more can a girl want? I wasn’t sure what I expected from this book, but I can hand on heart say that it was so much more and I thoroughly enjoyed this read.

Caine creates a believable, indepth world where the Great Library of Alexandria was never destroyed, and a world in which books are seen as priceless historical treasures, all knowledge must be controlled, and a world in which the library is a powerful institute to govern what people read, what are classed as rare or common books, and to enforce the laws that make it illegal for people to collect/ hoard books for personal use. This world sees book smugglers, book burners, librarians, High Garda soldiers, and the mysterious Obscurists with powers that are not divulged to the public.

The story follows Jess and other hopefuls (Postulants) who are being trained for roles within the great library. The characters are well-rounded and diverse, all from different walks of life, and some with questionable family history. Whilst England is at war with Wales, the Postulants have to put their political differences behind them to work as a team to not only survive the wars, but the library itself.

This book fits into a multitude of genres- dystopian, historical fiction, fantasy. Although set in 2025, many aspects are similar to that of an 18th century novel. It was the fantasy side that kept the pages turning for me. What alchemy is used by the Obscurists? What is the source of the abilities they are born with? How do the codexes work?

So many sub-plots and sub-relationships run through this book that one review couldn’t possibly sum it up. I have been offered book two- Paper and Fire from Berkley Publishing Group and can not wait to read part two in this twisted, engaging, innovative tale.

The opinions expressed here are those of K.J.Chapman and no other parties.

All books reviewed on this blog have been read by K.J.Chapman

K.J.Chapman has not been paid for this review.