Sunday, 28 December 2008

New books for March 2009

This is a big old list for March 2009............ some great reads...... I will also be doing a list for new books in the U.S for March 2009 soon.

Also if you want any further information or i have missed any books or you would like us to review a book for you please email us!!!!

Martin Jenkins and Chris Riddell - Don Quixote - Walker Books 2nd March

M.G Harris - The Joshua Files - Ice Shock - Scholastic 2nd March

Paul Dowswell - Auslander - Bloomsbury 2nd March

Lazlo Strangolov - Feather and Bone - Walker Books 2nd March

Andrew Prentice and Jonathan Weil - Intelligencer:The Flint King - David Fickling 3rd

Julia Donaldson - Running on the Cracks - Egmount 3rd March

Sam Mills - Shooting Words - Faber 4th March

Steve Cole and Linda Chapman - Genie and the Phoenix - Red Fox 5th March

Alexander Gordon Smith - Furnace:Lockdown - Faber 5th March

Natasha Narayan - The Mummy Snatcher of Mephis - Quercus 5th March

Mark Haddon - Boom! - David Fickling 5th March

Tracey Morley - The Unravellers - Book Guild Publishing 26th March

Thursday, 25 December 2008

Jonathan Stroud Heros of the Valley

I hope you are all having a Great Christmas if any of you would like to see any thing on Mr Ripley's please feel free to email me. The address is at the top of the page.I am Also putting together a list of some of my favorite reads of 2008.I would be also inteasted in you the reader to find what books you liked in 2008 so get emailing me.

What is Heroes of the Valley about?

It’s the tale of young Halli Sveinsson, who’d very much like to be the hero in question. Certainly he’s got a hero’s heart (brave, reckless, resolute); unfortunately he’s also short and squat, with little stumpy legs and a face like a toad peering out in a rainstorm. Still, this doesn’t stop him trying to emulate the tales of the great heroes of old, much to the annoyance of his parents, his brother and sister, and everyone else in his small Scandinavian village.

Up on the hills are the burial cairns of his ancestors: beyond them legend says sinister creatures named Trows lurk beneath the ground. Halli would like to test this, but society is nice and peaceful; the days of strife are over and swords have been melted down.

Bored and frustrated, Halli rebels against the claustrophobic restrictions of his day-to-day life. When his pranks lead to sudden violence, Halli must set out on a true quest of his own, but he soon finds that life is more complicated than the stories he adores . . .


Stroud’s new book is fresh and imaginative. It’s a tale set in a medieval world that recalls Norse epics and a heroes adventure. This book is truly wonderful and a compelling read for old and new fans alike. Funny and exciting with lots of memorable moments which makes this a timeless journey you will want to read again.

I give this book four out of five as Jonathan always writes like a dream and always a pleasure to meet him on tour.This is some of the events you may be able to go along to.

Publication is Jan 1st. He his launching the book on 8th January in London. Most of the tour will consist of events in schools, which won’t be open to the public. But there are several public events, which are below:

8th Jan – Schools events, store signings and interviews in London
9th Jan – Schools events in Hertfordshire
19th Jan – Schools events in Doncaster and Wakefield
20th Jan – Schools events in York, Leeds, and…

20th Jan Public event in Bolton:
6 – 7pm The Central library, Le Mans Crescent, Bolton BL1 1SE
For more information and to book your seat call 01204 333173
Tickets are free but you must reserve your place.

21st Jan – schools events in Liverpool, Preston and…

21st Jan Public event in Preston
4.30pm Borders, Deepdale Shopping Park, Blackpool Rd, Preston, Lancashire PR1 6AF
For more information and to book your seat call 01772 703856
Tickets are free but you must reserve your place.

9th Feb – Schools events in Coventry, Kidderminster and…

9th Feb Public event in Dudley
7 – 8pm Earls High School, Furnace Lane, Halesowen, B63 3SL
For more information or to book your seat call 01384 816105
Tickets are free but you must reserve your place.

11th Feb – Public event in Wiltshire
7 – 8pm St Mary’s school, Curzon Street, Calne, SN11 0DF.
For more information or to book your seat
Adults £2, children free.

12th Feb – schools events in Oxford

Jonathan is the author of the bestselling Bartimaeus trilogy, as well as stand-alone novels, Buried Fire, The Leap and The Last Siege. Jonathan worked as a children's book editor before becoming a full time writer. He lives in St. Albans with his wife and their two young children.

Monday, 22 December 2008

Morris Gleitzman Then


I was nervous about reviewing this book due to the success and adulation of The Book Thief and The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas. Would it come close to these great modern books emotionally and yet with a different interpretation? I was assured by the publisher that it would and so I undertook the reading task. The style was very different to the above two books even though the story was told through the eyes of a young boy. The short intense sentences held a powerful story which was harrowing and strong. It told the difficulties of the time well whilst explaining the adults and children’s instincts for survival. As well as having inspirational heroic characters with great moral beliefs. The twist at the end came as a surprise and left a choked feeling within. This book is compelling reading and one to have on the list.

Intro to the first Chapter.....

we ran for our lives, me and Zelda, up a hillside as fast as we could.
Which wasn’t very fast.
Not even with me holding Zelda’s hand and helping her up the slope.
You know how when you and two friends jump off a train that’s going to a Nazi death camp and you nearly knock yourself unconscious but you manage not to and your glasses don’t even get broken but your friend Chaya isn’t so lucky and she gets killed so you bury her under some ferns and wild flowers which takes a lot of strength and you haven’t got much energy left for running and climbing.

About the author

Morris Gleitzman was born in 1953 in Sleaford, Lincolnshire, England, and then moved south when he was two.
Then, in 1969, he emigrated to Australia. It was a big change. The heat, the flies and the completely different tinned meats. The shock was so great he stopped reading books for nearly a year. When he started again he found he wanted to write as well. That's when he fell in love with writing books. Since then he's written another 27. And he discovered that telling stories involves filling blank pages in more ways than one.

Book published by Puffin 1ST January 2009

Wednesday, 17 December 2008

More new books Jan/Feb 2009

Morris Gleitzman - Then - Puffin - 1ST Jan 2009 U.K

I had a plan for me and Zelda. Pretend to be someone else. Find new parents. Be safe forever. Then the Nazis came.My name is Felix.This is our story................

James A Owen - The Indigo King - Simon & Schuster Children's - 1ST Jan 2009 U.K

On a September evening in 1931, John and Jack, two of the Caretakers of the Imaginarium Geographica, discover a cryptic warning on a medieval manuscript -- which is not only addressed to them but seems to have been written by their friend, Hugo Dyson! But before they can discover the origin of the strange book, Hugo walks through a door in time -- and vanishes into the past.

And in that moment, the world begins to change.

The Frontier, which separates our world from the Archipelago of Dreams, has fallen. Dark and terrible beasts roam throughout England. No one can be summoned from the Archipelago. And both worlds have fallen into darkness under the reign of a cruel and terrible king.

The only hope to restore the proper order of things lies on a forgotten island at the edge of the Archipelago, where a time travel device left by Jules Verne must be used to race through history itself -- from the Bronze Age to ancient Alexandria and the founding of the Silver Throne -- in one night. And in that single night, John and Jack will find that the only way to save their friend and stop the chaos destroying the world is to solve a 2,000-year-old mystery: Who is the Cartographer?

P.W. Catanese - Happenstance Found - Simon & Schuster Children's 27TH Jan 2009 U.S

A boy named Happenstance wakes up, confused and frightened, with no memory of his past. Soon a mysterious trio arrives to take him away -- including the extraordinary Lord Umber: a merchant, explorer, inventor, and chronicler of all things monstrous and magical. This begins a dazzling adventure in a world filled with frightening and majestic creatures, strange and wonderful places, new friends and terrible foes. As the boy tries to unravel the mystery of his own origin, he also begins to wonder: Who is this Umber? What is the secret he's desperately trying to keep? And what is the destiny he's planned for Happenstance?

N.D Wilson - Dandelion Fire:Book 2 of the Cupboards - Random House - February 24TH 2009 U.S

Henry York never dreamed his time in Kansas would open a door to adventure—much less a hundred doors. But a visit to his aunt and uncle’s farm took an amazing turn when cupboard doors, hidden behind Henry’s bedroom wall, revealed themselves to be portals to other worlds. Now, with his time at the farm drawing to a close, Henry makes a bold decision—he must go through the cupboards to find the truth about where he’s from and who his parents are. Following that trail will take him from one world to another, and ultimately into direct conflict with the evil of Endor.

Monday, 15 December 2008

Henry Chancellor The Remarkable Adventure of Tom Scatterhorn:The museum's Secret

From time to time Mrs Ripley is going to review some of my Favorite books of 2008.
I love the feeling when some one else loves a book as much as you do!!

Mrs Ripley's Review

I began my adventure with Tom Scatterhorn from a free chapter sampler I managed to acquire from a local bookshop I frequent. After several pages I was hooked and by the time I reached the end I knew that my literary appetite was not satisfied. After hunting high and low through Mr Vincent’s prized proof copies; finally I fell upon the missing chapters. Due to a busy workload I was unable to finish this book in one sitting but had time allowed I could have easily managed it. Instead over several nights I wrestled with heavy eyelids to devour just one more page, then one more sentence and finally just one more word. I really enjoyed the composition of the story; time travel and the unusual theme of taxidermy. The twist at the end jolted me back to the beginning prologue involving Tom’s father and his experience with beetles. Which through the main section was not mentioned and totally slipped my mind. I liked the sudden realisation and effect that it left with me. I will be recommending this book and would easily give it a four out of five. Until next time Tom Scattehorn; I look forward to meeting again.


When Tom Scatterhorn's eccentric father disappears to the Far East in search of rare beetles, closely followed by his mother, Tom is left to spend Christmas with his uncle and aunt, keepers of the weird and wonderful Scatterhorn Museum. But don’t get too excited – because it's a dusty, dingy place, full of tatty stuffed animals and rickety cases of junk. Nobody really wants to visit it anymore, and it looks as if its days are numbered.

But when Tom comes to live there, he finds more to the museum than meets the eye. The animals may be ragged and moth-eaten but they have an incredible secret – a secret that originated when the stuffed animals were first made, a hundred years earlier. And then Tom discovers he can go right back to the time of their making. . . .

In an exciting adventure that threads in and out of time, from an Edwardian ice fair to the wastes of Mongolia to the jungles of India, Tom discovers that there is far more at stake than the fate of the museum. . . .

Book was published by Oxford Children's books in September 2008 so you can read a copy now.............

Sunday, 14 December 2008

Steve Feasey Changeling

In this last week I have probably read the best debut books to be released in 2009 so far. That has made it a special week for me. So I'd like say to thank you to Michelle Harrison and Steve Feasey, for writing two such great stories.


Steve has many big acts to follow in this genre of writing. But I think he's produced a great debut book. With a fresh imaginative story encompassing Vampires, Werewolves, Demons, Djins, Sorcerers and a Serial Shopper! It is an action packed mission; lots of fire power with good pace which leaves it set for the next book. This book should appeal to Darren Shan and Dean Vincent Carter fans and indeed give them a run for their money - so watch out. I have to say that I read this book in one sitting; from cover to cover and with great pleasure. This book gets five out of five, well done Steve!!

About the author.

He was born and raised on a council-estate in Hertfordshire, England. At the time he hated living there.He Say's in retrospect, I think that it gave me a good grounding in life that I may not have experienced if I had had a more privileged upbringing. There is something to be said about growing up in a tough environment.


Trey thought he was an ordinary teenager. Then he meets a mysterious stranger, Lucien Charron - luminously pale, oddly powerful, with eyes that seem flecked with fire and skin that blisters in sunlight. Somehow Trey finds himself in a luxury London penthouse, like a Bond villain's lair. It's the heart of a sinister empire, built on the powers of the netherworld - werewolves, vampires, sorcerers, and djinns. And Trey himself has a power that's roaring to break free. Is he a boy or is he a beast?

Changeling is published by Macmillan Children's Books out Jan 2 2009

Wednesday, 10 December 2008

Michelle Harrison The Thirteen Treasures

Michelle Harrison's debut book flows with energy from page to page; with a magical enchanting story which kept me gripped. This book holds everything for me. Faeries causing mischief, goblin beatings, witches living in caravans and a big old house with secret passages. It has all the ingredients to do very well; I devoured each page. I enjoyed following Tanya and Fabian through their adventure and all the highs and lows which came with this journey. All in all it's a little treasure and the first of many I hope. I can't wait for the next installment!! So get writing Michelle!!

I give this book five out five; it should do really well next year. One to watch out for.


Even as a small child Tanya had known her grandmother's manor to be
home to many secrets. Like everyone, she had heard of the disused escape tunnels rumoured to run beneath the house. And like most children, she spent many a rainy afternoon hunting for their concealed entrances, only to meet with disappointment. Upon reaching her teens Tanya had long given up hope of stumbling upon one of these secret passages, and had begun to question whether they existed at all.
So when the bookcase had revolved in the wall before her to reveal a narrow stone staircase leading down into musty darkness, it hadn't altogether come as a shock. Nor though, did it bring the delicious thrill she had so long anticipated, for the circumstances leading to its discovery were quite different from what she had imagined.

About the Author
Michelle Harrison is 28 years old, and an editorial assistant in children's publishing. She is a former bookseller at Ottakars/Waterstones in Stafford. Originally from Grays in Essex, she is a keen illustrator as well as writer and now lives in Oxfordshire with her partner. The Thirteen Treasures is her first novel and a sequel is to be published in 2010.

Published by Simon & Schuster Children's Books 5 Jan 2009

Monday, 8 December 2008

Books recommended for 2009 Part one

I am like a kid in a sweet shop when it comes to books; hence I am always looking ahead to see what new books are coming out. Here are some of the books of note which should hit the book stores next year. All of these titles are worth a look. I hope you enjoy reading each synopsis and that they get you excited to the point that you need to read them immediately.

I am always looking forward to some feedback in any of the post.So please do so.

Book One (one to watch)

By Philip Reeve -Fever Crumb

The long-awaited prequel to the critically acclaimed and award winning Mortal Engines quartet. Is the mystery of Fever, adopted daughter of Dr Crumb, the key to the secret that lies at the heart of London?

May 2009 Scholastic

Book Two

By Sam Osman - Quicksilver

Three children, born on different continents, mysteriously connected by the power of ancient leylines. What cosmic force brings them to an ordinary London suburb to fulfill a prophesy written in pre-history? Will it explain why their parents have vanished? And the chilling secret of who they really are?
A gripping mystery from a very exciting new writer that links our modern world to the forgotten wisdom of lost civilizations.

I have no more information on this title as i can't find a release date for this book may be published by Scholastic 2009

Book Three

Patricia Wrede - Thirteenth Child (Frontier Magic Book)

Eff was born a thirteenth child. Her twin brother, Lan, is the seventh son of a seventh son. This means he's supposed to possess amazing talent -- and she's supposed to bring only bad things to her family and her town. Undeterred, her family moves to the frontier, where her father will be a professor of magic at a school perilously close to the magical divide that separates settlers from the beasts of the wild.

Out April 15 2009 Scholastic Press

Book four My tip for for sucsess next year.

Francisco Stork - Marcelo in the Real World

Marcelo Sandoval hears music no one else can hear--part of the autism-like impairment no doctor has been able to identify--and he's always attended a special school where his differences have been protected. But the summer after his junior year, his father demands that Marcelo work in his law firm's mailroom in order to experience "the real world." There Marcelo meets Jasmine, his beautiful and surprising coworker, and Wendell, the son of another partner in the firm. (cont'd)
He learns about competition and jealousy, anger and desire. But it's a picture he finds in a file -- a picture of a girl with half a face -- that truly connects him with the real world: its suffering, its injustice, and what he can do to fight.

Reminiscent of "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time" in the intensity and purity of its voice, this extraordinary novel is a love story, a legal drama, and a celebration of the music each of us hears inside.

Out March 2009 Arthur A. Levine Books

Friday, 5 December 2008

J K Rowling the Tales of Beedle the Bard Collector's Edition

Thursday was an amazing day as the snow was falling and everywhere was in lock-down. Roads were blocked, schools were closed and if by magic the postman delivered some great treats. I rushed down the stairs to the postbox like a little child. I was looking forward to receiving my collector's copy of this great book and there it was alongside another parcel; my JK Rowling book and a fantastic new book proof of Paul Stewart's finale the Immortals with amazing embellishments by Chris Riddell. I hope to put a reveiw up soon. So thank you to everyone as I got my Christmas presents early.

JK Rowling's Collectors Edition of The Tales of Beedle The Bard from Amazon. Tucked in its own case disguised as a wizarding textbook found in the Hogwarts library, the Collector's Edition includes an exclusive reproduction of J.K. Rowling's handwritten introduction, as well as 10 additional illustrations not found in the Standard Edition or the original. Opening the case reveals a velvet bag embroidered with J.K. Rowling’s signature, in which sits the piece de resistance: your very own copy of The Tales of Beedle the Bard, complete with metal skull, corners, and clasp; replica gemstones; and emerald ribbon. As a special gift for fans, the Collector's edition also includes a set of 10 ready-for-framing prints of J.K. Rowling's illustrations, enclosed in a velvet-lined pocket in the lid of the outer case.This is a great edition for ever Potter Fan.


Five Magical short tales are a testament to J. K. Rowling's astounding imagination. After each one, Dumbledore writes his own analysis of the tale, and his personal experience of it ('The Fountain of Fair Fortune' has the funniest commentary). An introduction is penned by Rowling, and the original story is translated by Hermione Granger from the ancient runes they were originally written in (she is given credit, but she does not appear anywhere in the book writing as herself). At the end of the book are a few pages from the charity representative, explaining what the charity does.

Five out Five

Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Sean Beech The Ice Crown the Lords of the Moon


This book has to be a great collectible with a small print of 1000 hardbacks on a small book publisher.Book one was Published by Melrose in Sep 2008 with more books to follow in this series. This book is getting a great reputation as more people read it.A strong debut with a well written story also featured in a big news paper recently.

About the author

Sean, 38, wrote his fantasy adventure story The Ice Crown on Army notebooks while an army medic treating the injured and sick in Basra, Iraq.

He joined the Army at the tender age of 16. He recalled: “In between mortar attacks, I had a bit of downtime. It was escapism I needed to take my mind off the harrowing things in Basra.”

Now the married father-of-three has left the Queen Alexander Royal Nursing Corps, in the Light Infantry.

He is now training to become a primary school teacher and is donating half of the book’s profits to the National Literacy Trust.

The book, the first in The Lords of the Moon trilogy is aimed at teenagers.

Whilst serving in the Army Sean said he was saddened by the poor reading standards of many of the young soldiers and added he hoped his book may increase interest in reading for pleasure.


For nearly three hundred years now the Moon lands have known peace. But now suddenly not only has the Ice Crown of man been stolen, but also the Ancient howl of the Fennigan Wolves. But for what purpose? Their theft robs both races of the power to unite their peoples! But who is responsible? The mysterious Fey? The magical mages? Or their lands erstwhile enemy, the dreaded Dark Knights?

Review by: Joanne Lee

A book of darkness and light, of seriousness and laughter. Most authors would not even attempt to combine then two for fear of them becoming tangled up and diluting the power of the other. Sean Beech has achieved this brilliantly as he masterfully weaves the plot through seven characters. The entire 1st book seems to occur in only 3 days yet the action is intense as you switch from one character to the next and relive some of their pasts. The author is obviously setting the scene here for what promises to be an outstanding follow up and I for one cannot wait. I do not but into what people class as genre's of books; are not all books the fantasy of the author. What is the difference in making up a gruesome murder or an adventure at sea. I read books because of the author and if you like author's like Bernard Cornwell, Terry Pratchett, Dan Brown and JK Rowling to name just a few then you will love this. For me a new star has been born and one I will look out for.

I would like to have some feedback on this post.

Monday, 1 December 2008

Maya Snow The Warrior's Path (Sisters of the Sword)

I am having problems finding any details on this author so straight on to the

Kimi dreams of being a great samurai warrior, but she and her sister, Hana, are young ladies of feudal Japan, daughters of the Jito of the province. Her future seems clear: Girls do not become samurai.

Then, betrayal shatters the sisters' world. Their power-hungry uncle murders their father, and their mother and little brother mysteriously disappear. Determined to seek revenge and restore their honor, they disguise themselves as boys to train at a school for samurai. Kimi and Hana are thrown headlong into a life of warrior codes, sharp swords, and shadowy figures—as they work with fierce determination to avenge the brutal wrongs done to their family.

In a flash, life has swept them into a terrible adventure, more heart-pounding than Kimi and Hana ever could have imagined . . . and once it has been set in motion, nothing will ever be the same.


A great read for every girl who has the tomboy within. Well paced and clearly written. You can picture yourself right in the middle of the action.I enjoyed the addition of the Japanese terminology as well. Graphic at points, not for the young reader. Only downside is the open ended ending to the book. Leaving lots of unanswered questions for the next book in the series,which is entitled "THE BLADE'S EDGE ". Which is out in the U.K in June 2009. With the answers to them questions i hope!! All considered, she is definitely an author I would read again Three out Five.

I have used the U.S book cover,as i find it more of eye catching then the U.K cover.This book will be released in the U.K on the 1st Jan 2009 by Oxford Children's books and it's already out in the U.S in a nice hardback edition with Harper Collins.

Also thanks to every one who as sent me books to read and review. With out your help i can't continue to review books on this blog.Also if any one can help me get U.S books to review please contact me at the above email address at the top of the page. Many thanks!!