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Reviews Written by
Nayu "rinoa_s_l" (UK)

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Introducing Teddy: A Gentle Story about Gender and Friendship
Introducing Teddy: A Gentle Story about Gender and Friendship
by Jess Walton
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £13.27

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Friendship rules!, 31 May 2016
Thomas makes a big decision about his life which he worries about how Errol will react. It turns out Thomas was worrying over nothing. Errol is perfectly happy with Thomas being Tilly, so too is Ava. It's who Tilly is that is important, not whether she was Thomas and became Tilly. It's a sweet book explaining how some people change who they are seen as by the world, but now who they are inside. Hopefully that makes sense.

I've never been bothered by people changing externally/internally be true to their selves. I smiled at reading this because I have a teddy that my grandmother knitted for. When I was tiny there were days when Maxie (name origin long forgotten) was a girl, wearing frilly dresses, cute skirts and shoes. Equally there were some days Maxie was a boy, running around in shorts and t-shirt, or trousers. For some reason I genuinely never thought Maxie could be a tomboy, it made sense that Maxie was a girl and a boy.

Obviously Tilly doesn't switch back to Thomas, but it goes to show that children can handle what can be seen as issues by adults when really it doesn't matter who a person is, what they are called or what they wear. They are themselves, which everyone should be free to be.

I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review on my blog Nayu's Reading Corner [...]


Trace Evidence: A Virals Short Story Collection
Trace Evidence: A Virals Short Story Collection
by Kathy Reichs
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A fairly good read, 27 May 2016
This review is by a friend of mine on my blog.

Trace Evidence brings together three of the Virals short stories previously published in e-book with a new short story which is set after the fifth book in the series – Terminal. I was really pleased that the stories were published again in print as I had not had a chance to read them in e-book form, although having them together makes it a little more difficult to orientate yourself around where they should appear in the original Virals series.

The first story – Shock – tells us how Tory Brennan arrived on Morris Island to live with her father after the death of her mum in a car accident. Key aspects of the story have been mentioned in the main books, but it was really nice to see the beginning of Tory’s story, particularly when you know how it is going to develop. It also explains how she and her friends meet and how they find their bunker, which is their secret hideout. This was my favourite of the four stories as I liked to see the dynamic of the friendship group change when Tory arrived.

The second story – Shift – could almost be a stand-alone short story, although it helps to know the background to the Virals and their powers. The story is set after Tory’s father has been promoted to Director of LIRI, the research institute where he works (somewhere between the second and third of the main books in the series, I think). There has been a break-in at LIRI and computer equipment is missing. The gang try to help solve the mystery using their enhanced abilities. The famous forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan from Kathy Reichs’ adult series makes an appearance and also helps to solve the crime. I don’t really like when these worlds cross over. I enjoy reading the Temperance Brennan series also, although I am only about half way through, so I don’t know how much Tory and her father Kit make an appearance in these books. I feel, personally, that Temperance Brennan loses her credibility when she appears in the Virals series because of the super powers that Tory has. For me, it somehow makes Temperance Brennan’s world less believable. But that’s just me, others might love that.

The third story – Swipe – also features Tory’s great-aunt Tempe. While the gang enjoy the day at a Comic Con convention in which Temperance Brennan is signing books and promoting the TV show Bones, a priceless piece of memorabilia goes missing and again Tory and her friends investigate. Apart from looking at the original publication date, it is difficult to tell where in the series this story fits. However, out of all of them, it is probably the most stand-alone. Again, not so keen on the crossover of characters, but the story is fun and will appeal to those who enjoy these sorts of conventions.

The final story – Spike – is set after the fifth book of the main series. It is Kit and Whitney’s wedding day but things keep going wrong. Tory and her friends have to work out if this is just bad luck or if someone is sabotaging the big day. There were lots of funny moments, but I was a little disappointed. I loved the end of the last book and was excited to see what would happen to the Virals. Sadly, the way in which the group and their powers have evolved isn’t how I had hoped. However, I am looking forward to the next main book to see how things all pan out.

I (Nayu) Received a copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review on my blog Nayu's Reading Corner [...]


How Not to Be Weird
How Not to Be Weird
by Dawn McNiff
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.99

5.0 out of 5 stars So funny!, 27 May 2016
This review is from: How Not to Be Weird (Paperback)
Warning: this review involves total fangirl bias because I love Dawn's other work, and happily loved William as soon as I met him. His family is not the so called norm of 2.5 children. It's him with a super hippy mother who can't even entertain the idea that he may have personal preferences over what style clothes he wears and what he eats, and her partner who William dislikes. And Gooner, who is a loveable and despicable at the same time!

New school means a new William-notice how I don't call him by his 'name' of Woody? William makes changes despite the universe at times being a bit against him. He places all his faith in a momento from his father, and has no idea that it is worthless and he already had the inner confidence to change himself, he just needed to lure it out. He thinks he needs to separate himself from his previous friends (kind of) but he learns that doesn't work, and he can evolve at the same time as keeping them.

There are plenty of mishaps which at the time William thinks will ruin his reputation, but the opposite happens. I was thrilled when he was able to feel 'normal' thanks to his new grandmother, her going overboard helps him out more than she will ever know. I doubt there's anyone who can't relate to wanting to change at least a part of themselves, which means it's a perfect read for everyone, cringe moments and all. Another rereadable story from Dawn! (Still hoping the next one is with a girl protagonist though!)

I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review on my blog Nayu's Reading Corner[...]


Caramel Hearts
Caramel Hearts
by E.R. Murray
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Full of baking!, 27 May 2016
This review is from: Caramel Hearts (Paperback)
Another brilliant read from Elizabeth, this time about a wayward teen who makes a lot of wrong choices and finds solace in baking. I didn't like Liv as much as I liked Ebony in Elizabeth's other book, The Book of Learning.

Liv has an attitude I don't like, and she does a fair few not nice things. I was a bit surprised by the turn of events because Liv gets bullied badly, so I thought she might realise right from wrong and do the right thing. Instead she gets deeper and deeper in trouble as her life falls around her. It takes a good shock for her to realise that her life isn't all that bad, something I think a lot of readers can relate to.

While I didn't like Liv or her alcoholic mother I adored Liv's older sister Hetty. Hetty is doing her best keep her family together, fendig off social services, trying to shape Liv into a responsible young adult. She loses her temper a few times, not that I blame her because Liv doesn't seem to do much for herself, or realise that doing tasks and errands is a part of being an adult. It's sweet that Hetty covers up for Liv at cruicial moments, which makes Liv realise her sister isn't that bad after all.

I really want another book because there's a lot of conflict still in Liv's life, and she has issues to work through even as the book ends. The cookin element was fun, with familiar recipes having a fun twist that made me smile as I read them. It's not just a recipe, but the way the recipes are described which makes them more appealing than a simple recipe book. I hope to try some of them out over time!

I received a copy from the author in exchange for an honest review on my blog Nayu's Reading Corner[...]


Boy in Heels (Spies in Disguise)
Boy in Heels (Spies in Disguise)
by Kate Scott
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic last in the series read!, 25 May 2016
Kate's books are guaranteed to make me laugh, but this one made me feel like crying too. I can't imagine life for Joe without Sam, as Sam helps him so much in keeping up appearances of Joe being a girl called Josie, and being a great spy partner which every spy should have. There are slightly more moments of hilarity than gloom, but the gloomy ones linger because Joe and Sam both know they will have to say goodbye.

I welled up when that goodbye happened as it is so tragic, but like every cloud has a silver lining there is some good coming from Joe moving away. I hope there will be another book eventually, no least because I like the gadgets as much as Joe, I share his view on high heels (Though I'm super clumsy so stick to flats to avoid faceplanting and creating an onion avalanche), and I want to see him enjoy wearing trousers again. There's so much to love about him, and the way his parents are extremely strict about his safety yet he somehow manages to get around their limitations.

I received a copy from the author in exchange for an honest review on my blog Nayu's Reading Corner [...]


How the Duke Was Won (The Disgraceful Dukes Book 1)
How the Duke Was Won (The Disgraceful Dukes Book 1)
Price: £3.99

4.0 out of 5 stars A fun read!, 25 May 2016
I was intrigued by Charlene's story because I knew it must be so hard to pretend to be someone else in order to save her family. The story switches between James and Charlene's point of view. It starts with James, and initially I had quite a low opinion of him, until the bombshell that ends chapter 1. Wow! Didn't expect that as a plot twist, definitely not straight away. That alone saved me from skimming over his pov scenes - yes I do that as I really prefer a girl's point of view. While my low opinion of him wasn't unreasonable, I can say he is tenderhearted, he does really care about the welfare of others (when he stops being an idiot and pays attention to his employees which is all I'm saying on that matter. Trust me you will know what I mean when the plot turns to cocoa). He clearly had a rough childhood, and put up a lot of defences to protect himself. Charlene finds a way through them, despite his best intentions to stay away from her.

I would have liked a little more time spent on Charlene's training to be Lady Dorethea, as it was but a brief glimpse. I understand several days isn't a great deal of time to train her (that isn't the several days of being with James, but the time before that), but I'd love to have seen her perhaps make a few more mistakes than the sherry glass, or be able to prove that she was a quick learner.

That and the rather mature content aside it's a brilliant read. I loved all the different outfits she wore, however briefly, as they sounded elegant and beautiful. I'm not that shallow, I loved how much Charlene cares for her younger sister, how she puts Lulu's needs first before her own. How she would choose to endure anything evil Grant wants to do than let her sister be tainted. I love how she manages to help so many lives in such a short space of time, that she does so knowing she won't be with James again (it's a happily ever after tale, so she is, but even I didn't know how that could happen). I love how Charlene is kind to James' staff, something which the other debutantes aren't.

They are an entertaining trio, well, 6 of them including their mothers. They all behave outrageously in their own ways, my favourite being Alice who is mischievous and a bundle of fun - be sure to have a dictionary at hand because there's a term beginning with frug- that I will not write because it will spoil the surprise as to what Alice is all about. I looked it up, it isn't at all inappropriate, it is a real word, just one that I'd have missed out on understanding if I hadn't looked it up as soon as I saw it.

I love Flor - that's all I can say as who she is is part of the plot. Charlene understandable takes a natural shine to her, and that's yet another way she shows James her true heart, even though she can't reveal who she is really is until the end. Many heart in mouth moments over Charlene's safety, both from the wrath of her pretend mother (who was a constant surprise), the slimeball Grant, and her ability to get into trouble because she follows her heart and her head. More of her heart :)

I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review on my blog Nayu's Reading Corner [...]


The Story of a Seagull and the Cat Who Taught Her to Fly
The Story of a Seagull and the Cat Who Taught Her to Fly
by Luis Sepúlveda
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

5.0 out of 5 stars A touching read!, 22 May 2016
A moving tale of a cat who brings up a seagull, as well as teaching the seagull to fly. How Zorga got the gull made me cry, as it is so sweet. The love between them sparkled off the page before the seagull was born in both words and illustrations.

It's fascinating learning about Zorga's cat community who pull together at times of need, sometimes with bribes. Their diverse characters make it an entertaining read, especially when it comes to researching how to take care of a gull and help a gull fly. I loved the lengths Zorga goes through to keep the egg and baby gull safe when his owner's friend pops in to give him food (owner is on holiday).

I was a bit surprised by who Zorga and his friends approached for help, I honestly thought they would try and communicate with a bird, even if it wasn't a seagull. Expect to shed a tear at the wonderful end. I have to wonder whether the poet in the book is based on Luis himself. A must read if you like happy tales, and animals tales!

I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review on my blog Nayu's Reading Corner [...]


Little Grey Rabbit: Little Grey Rabbit Goes to the Sea
Little Grey Rabbit: Little Grey Rabbit Goes to the Sea
by Alison Uttley
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £5.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Possibly the best book in the series!, 22 May 2016
Another fabulous adventure with my favourite fictional bunny!) I dimly recall reading this particular LGR story when I was little, so it was fun to reread the finer details whivc I'd forgotten. I remembered how forgetful Hare is so how he, Little Grey Rabbit got a cold wasn't surprising. How they got to the sea was clever, I loved the idyllic way they got rid of their colds-if only a sea breeze could do that!

I liked how prior to the trip why visiting their friends' homes wasn't practical, one of many countryside facts woven into the story. I was amused by how one of my favourite pics of squirrel dancing around proved invaluable to beating the thieving seagulls-yet again LGR shows her bravery, though it's squirrel who is the main heroine. Yet another delightful read from my childhood to treasure!

I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review on my blog Nayu's Reading Corner[...]


Dead Silent: A gripping serial killer thriller (Eve Clay)
Dead Silent: A gripping serial killer thriller (Eve Clay)
Price: £4.07

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Grisly read!, 17 May 2016
Despite being obscene in places it was a fantastic murder mystery. I'm surprised to be giving this full marks, as some of the content is obscene in what the evil doers do - it is for mature audiences only. Thankfully I have a lousy memory so there's a high probability of me eventually forgetting it. The problem with said memory is that because there is so much going on in the story, especially near the end with identities getting confused I did lose the finer details of the plot which are woven throghout the story and revealed at times when I was scared for those caught up in it.

The book is amazing. Sick, but amazing. I love how I got so attached to Louise because she seemed like a frail elderly spinster. Ha! That's all I'm saying. No-one is who they seem. There is clearly a lot of back story for Clay, but I didn't feel left out from not knowin it, apart from the issue with her son which was one part I lost the plot thread for. The intensity of the murderer's cruelty and the creepiness of knowing who they are before everyone else did made it a high end thriller.

I took the precaution of only reading it in daylight, I could have done without making beetroot coleslaw the following day as it reminded me of certain scenes (why does beetroot look like blood?), but I take away with me appreciation for the world in general (that will make sense when you read what happens in the book) ans awe of writers like Mark who can stomach writing that kind of work. Not a genre I ever intend to write in, but will happily (in daylight hours) read it.

I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review on my blog Nayu's Reading Corner [...]


Nibbles: The Book Monster
Nibbles: The Book Monster
by Emma Yarlett
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £11.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beware of Nibbles!, 15 May 2016
Nibbles is book hungry and enjoys wrecking fairytales!) I'm thankful that my book came with an actual Nibbles toy!!!! I adore his book self and his toy self! I have the sound of Disney's Stitch cacklig away as Nibbles' 'voice' while I read this. I love how Emma recreates Little Red Riding Hood, Goldilocks, and Jack and the Beanstalk (which due to the way the words were placed around the illustrations looked like Beans Talk, providing much amusement), how the well known fairytales have actual books within Nibbles' adventure, rather than just written on an ordinary page.

I hope that readers get interested in the other titles mentioned on the bookshelves which Nibbles scampers through - I've read some of them. The ending was a slightly expected surprise which made me shake my head and imagine my Nibbles toy bouncig around happily ^o^ You definitely want Nibbles on your bookshelf, so long as you keep him locked up!

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review on my blog Nayu's Reading Corner [...]


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