100 books in 1 year. Books 11 to 13 Review

Published September 30, 2013 by claire2903

Ok so following on from the mortal instruments books, I have read the 3 infernal devices books.
And believe you me they are every bit as addictive as the mortal instruments books!


Book One – Clockwork Angel

This book sets the scene of Victorian times, and a little further into the Shadow hunter world / history.

It is a lot darker a lot sooner than the mortal instruments books, but every bit as gripping. The clinches between our heroine and the leading men are just a steamy as can be expected with out detracting from the good story line. This book lays out the basis for the adventure ahead, you get to see the main players and to get a real feel for them, understand or not understand them as the story will require.

Another book that takes you by the lapels and drags you into its world.


Book Two – Clockwork Prince

The second in the series and you see the relationships between the main characters develop, the inevitable love triangle presents it self , but its dealt with in a very gentlemanly fashion. These books do exude the manners and propriety of the 1800’s era of when they are based. A lady never shows too much emotion and is never forward, for want of being thought wonton and with out breeding. This however does not stop what goes on behind closed doors.
The story develops further and we see a clever plot unfold before us, with twists and turns and that ever gripping, teeth grinding annoyance as things seam to be going the way of the bad guy, and the end of the world.

Lots of shocks and omg moments, also at lot of references to the mortal instruments books, with things that will make you smile when you recognise them.


Book Three – Clockwork Princess

The love triangle seams to have been solved with a marriage proposal, things as ever do not go to plan. in this book we see the bad guys plan unfold its last surprise. There are times of true despair and desperation. There where plenty of times, my hand flew to my mouth through shock and fear for the characters, and also lots of smiles and laughs.

I think I may hold a record for the amount of times I said OMG! through out this book. There are lots of surprise relationships spring up in this book, as well as nods to the mortal instruments books and explanations to things in the mortal instrument books also. As well as the full un ravel of the bad guys plans, and surprise measures used against him.
I must admit though this book is very sad at the end and I recommend tissues!


My over all rating for these books is 5/5. The story sucked me right in and made me care for, possibly even love some of the characters. They have moved emotions inside of me which is a hard thing to do.

I will be very interested how the films will portray these books are there are some quite quite dark and scary moments. I also can not wait to see who they will cast as Will and Jem, as between these two gentlemen and Mr Jace of the mortal instruments my heart is very much torn!
My only criticism of these three books, is the verses of poetry at the beginning of every chapter in all the books. By the end it felt to me they were just a way of getting an extra 30k words into a book without having to do any actual work of your own. I can see why the idea appealed to Cassandra Clare, as the main characters have a great fondness of the written word, but for me its just became an annoyance.



So as you can see from my title I have read 13 books (dum dum dum) I have a few different books at my disposal. The wee free men, Da Vinci code and angels and demons. But I will be now continuing my journey with the dwarves with the second Dwarves book.


So till next time Hail and Fair Well Brother……..

100 Books Read In 1 year. Week 6/7 review

Published September 20, 2013 by claire2903

Well that was a blur of days!
As I stated in my last post I had aquired all of the Mortal Instument books that are currently published.
And wow they are quite amazing.
So with out further ado here are my reviews of all five.
Followed by a tally and were I will go fr here.

Mortal Instruments – Cassandra Clare

Book One – City of Bones

Well I started this book having seen the film.
It was quite by accident that I came to watch the film but a happy one as I would never have know about these books.
Me and mother were meant to see The Lone Ranger with Johnny Depp in. Mothers a slight fan.
Anyway the cinema wasnt showing it and we asked the lovely lady at thw cinema what was on and good.
It was from her that we learnt the film had come from these books.
Now I went in thinking this will be like twilight and a bit teenie bobber and girlie romance slush.
Which is all fine. I loved twilight (team Jacob all the way here) but I thought this has been done.
What a suprise did I get!!
So went home mother bought all five books the next day and set about reading them in a few short days.
(Grumble moan, I think thay shes now ahead possibly of me) she then passed them to me and I actually left reading the first one for a day.
But wow when I started it was amazing.
This book is about demon hunters. But not ordinary demon hunters. Hunters with the blood of an angel running through their vein.
The first book introduces you to the nephilim and lays the board for the further books.
The main character learns a lot about her self she never knew and also the emotions with becoming 16. We’ve all been there!
You develop a really strong bond for the characters in this first book which makes you want to read the next to find out what happens next.

Book Two – City of Ashes

This book carries straight on from book one and the all important revalation with in it.
You feel yourself sympathising with Clary on the tough decisions and choices that she must make.
I must say I found myself texting mother and saying I dont believe this I dont believe that!
And I think this that and the other is going on.
All to be replied with ‘read on’ ggrrr most infuriating! But it did make me read on to see if I was right.
There are many more twists and turns in this book. And also you see the steamy teenage angst and frustration of developing ‘adult’ emotions start to unravel further in this book.

Book Three – City of Glass

This book sees Clarys world thrown into war.
Meaning she has to put aside her own personal feelings to help.
In this book you also see the furtherment of other relationships that have sprung up around Clary.
There are many hard decisions to be made in this book and I found myself thinking no just do it or no dont do it against the will of the author.
This for me creates conflict in the book which keeps me reading to make sure all ends happy.

Book Four – City of Fallen Angels

Clary has finally found happiness but it is short lived and she is once again thrown into turmoll.
She has to fight tooth and nail against seamingly everyone to hold on to what is hers.
You also see other characters back stories expand in this book.
Which again for me gave me a few OMG moments.
Another great technic to keep a reader reading and boy it did that.

Book Five – City of Lost Souls

This book was quite emence is the sense that it kinda grabbed me by the arm and pulled me along on a fairly chaotic ride.
I flight afraid for Clary and the times of utter despair she felt.
But not only her emotions but those of the other characters.
As I have grown to love and hate various characters, I now begin to feel more stronger emotions regarding the storying line and I think that, that is an excellent way of writing.
I got to the end of this book and literally had goosebumps!

This series of books is an amazing ride through a demon hunters world. The perils and advantures that befall them and the astronomical things they must do in order to save not themselves but the people and the world they love.

I will definately be recommending this to anyone who will listen to me 😉

My score for all of these books is 5/5.
Great, intensive reads. Throughly enjoyed and can not wait for the next one when its out in May next year!

So thats the reviews done. Whats next?

I have procured the three Infernal Devices books also by Cassandra Clare.
These are a sort of prequel to the Mortal Instrument set in the victorian times with the modern day shadow hunters ancestors.

The five books I have read takes me to a total of 10/100. Im a tenth of the way there!

I have decided it may well be better for me just to post when I have read a book rather than try to stick to a weekly post as that doesnt appear to be working.

So the reviews will now be labelled review book XX.

So caio for now bambinos  🙂

100 book read in 1 year. A challenge. Week update.

Published September 8, 2013 by claire2903

You maybe wondering what the hell happen to week 4’s update. Well quite frankly so am I! 🙂
I have been mega busy with back to school / nursery, birthdays, jam making and inventing, and of course reading.

I have only managed to read the one book in all this time, o ooh no, lagging. But i have been working on my own books so I guess its ok as this challenge is all about improving my writing skills so that my book can be awesome, so if inspiration hits me ( at 3 am most times, thanks! ) Then surely I should write huh?

Anyway I have read The Dwarves by Markus Heitz and heres my review:

The Dwarves – Markus Heitz

I’ve wanted to read this book for sometime, actually ever since seeing it in Waterstone’s book store. Its a big black book with a dwarf on it. It looks mysterious and inviting to a nosy parker like me, as it gives nothing away. Plus for all the fantasy books I’ve read, lots of them including dwarves into the story, I knew very little about dwarves. And these creatures fascinate me!

So I got this book and started it with a great keenness to read it. Now it is a little slow going at first I’ll grant you, but it so worth hanging in there and keeping going! The story is very good and well planned out. The book had me guessing and second guessing all the time. I learnt so much about dwarves from the story. But also the others in the dwarves world, like  elves and just why the two races despise each other. And the Alfar, man oh man you don’t want to meet one of those bad boys, ever!
There are some quite gruesome and possibly scary parts of the book, as it draws you in and you get involved, so much so that when reading it in the bath and your pens rolls off the side and clatters to the floor you have a mini heart attack! Yes this was me, at around 2/3 am one evening.
It did also keep me up reading as I needed to know what happened next.

The book met my expectations and possibly passed them, I thoroughly enjoyed the book and look forward to the next installment.

My score for this book  5/5  Well written, got me reading until late in the night with this hunger for more. Definitely recommended.


This is my next task……. wish me luck, and I’ll see you in about month hehehe 😉
But on a serious note I will be hopefully writing my review of the first of these books next week ( 12th Sept ), so adios amigos!

100 Book Read in 1 Year Challenge – Week 3 Review / Update

Published August 25, 2013 by claire2903

This week I have been on holiday… Camping.

This past time is NOT as conducive to reading as one may think! Especially when you have 2 young children, and 2 dog’s.

Anyway I have managed to read 1 of my 3 chosen books so I will now review it, tally up how many I have read and how many to go, list the next bunch of books I propose to read and work out how many books a week I now have to read in order to complete my challenge!


I’ve seen Trudi’s books many time in the book stores and always said “I’ll read them one day” well I’m glad I’ve started. This book is not as grand as GRR Martin or Pat Rothfuss, but it definitely held my attention (often until 3 am!)

This story is wonderfully simple to follow and understand, it draws you in and keeps you reading. It has a lovely way of setting the picture of the world which these magicians exist, their culture and history. I assume the other books she has written are all based in this world and quite frankly I can’t wait to read more of them!

My score for this book  4/5  Well written and a great introduction to the world Trudi has created.

This book brings my total to 4 so far. Which means I have 96 to go.

This works out to still be just under 2 books a week (1.9 to be exact!) I will try to push myself into reading more than the specified 2 books a week, I’d like to have Christmas off 😉

I am part way through the Assassins Apprentice – Robin Hobb, so that will be the first book of this new week, I’ve also been to see mortal instruments at the cinema. The film wasn’t half so bad as I expected, in fact I actually really enjoyed it. Its not so much Twilight as its more like Blade, underworld, Van Helsing and others of the nature. I have also been told there is a series of books that have inspired this film. So the list will be:

Assassins Apprentice (farseer trilogy)

Royal Assassin (farseer trilogy)

Assassin’s Quest (farseer trilogy)

Ship of Magic (liveship trader trilogy)

The Mad Ship (liveship trader trilogy)

Ship of Destiny (liveship trader trilogy)

Fool’s Errand (tawny man trilogy)

The Golden Fool (tawny man trilogy)

Fool’s Fate (tawny man trilogy)

Dragon Keeper (the rain wilds chronicles)

Dragon Haven (the rain wilds chronicles)

City of Dragons (the rain wilds chronicles)

Blood of Dragons (the rain wilds chronicles) – Robin Hobb


The Dwarfs

The fate of the Dwarves

The revenge of the dwarves

The war of the dwarves – Markus Heitz


The Novice (black magician trilogy)

The High Lord (black magician trilogy)

The Magician Apprentice

The Ambassador’s Mission (traitor spy trilogy)

The Rogue (traitor spy trilogy)

The Traitor Queen (traitor spy trilogy) – Trudi Canavan


City of Bones (Mortal Instruments series)

City of Ashes (Mortal Instruments series)

City of Glass (Mortal Instruments series)

City of Fallen Angels (Mortal Instruments series)

City of Lost Souls (Mortal Instruments series)

City of Heavenly Fire – 2014 (Mortal Instruments series)

Clockwork Angel (Infernal Devices series)

Clockwork Prince (Infernal Devices series)

Clockwork Princess (Infernal Devices series) – Cassandra Clare


That seams a lot of books for one week, and your right 🙂 I will pick 2/3 books from all of the above!

You will have to forgive me for listing them all but I need to get them all down or I will forget them, and more over forget what order they go in to read, as they are all trilogy/series books.

Anyway thank you for reading and see you next week if I don’t see you before 🙂


Revelations – (possible spoilers if you’ve not read the books I mention!)

Published August 19, 2013 by claire2903

Well as you know if you follow my blog I have undergone the challenge of 100 books read in 1 year. (Daft sod I know 🙂 )


Well I have been learning some new things, or realising old knowledge that hadn’t been confirmed.


‘Hang on, What?!?’

I hear you, I’ve not gone mad. I’ll explain what I mean by putting down what I realised/re learnt about writing stories.


Things like:


All fantasy stories have conflict, or struggle between two factions.

Lord of the Rings – Elves and Men ( and Dwarves ) against Orcs

Song of Ice and Fire – The North against The South, dragons versus lions, wolves against lions, in fact pretty much every one against lions, including some lions! 

King Killer Chronicles – Kvothe versus Ambrose, the Chandrian, himself.


As far as I can see all fantasy stories have one or more heart rendering moments.

Those moments you feel so sad, possibly even cry because of the shear despair of the story.

A desperate situation, where the character has to make a horrid choice, the lesser of 2 evils perhaps.

Or where someone the main character loves dearly dies, or even a character the reader loves dies ( G R R Martin, I’m looking at you! )


They all, almost always have lots of what I call OMG moments.

Remember I said so and so’s dead? well Surprise their not! OMG!

Or so and so isn’t so and so they are actually whats his face! OMG!

Or it wasn’t that fella you’ve hated since page 5 who killed everyone, it was the real bad guy and the fella you have hated all this time is actually a good guy! OMG!

Or vice verser the good guy just went mad and killed everyone! OMG! (and what the hell)


The good ones have a twist or reveal something really exciting.

Ever read a book, or indeed watch a film, and your certain of something all the way through then right at the end you go OMG, no way, I didn’t see that coming! That’s what I mean.

Films like Sixth Sense, Prometheus, even the last Twilight film did it!

I guess this point could fall under the OMG moment point, but I thought it deserved its own point.


And lastly they mostly have the YES! moments.

Those moments when you just have to hiss or shout yesssss! Generally making everyone around you stare at you ( yes I have done this on more than one occasion )


The moment Joff dies in Song of Ice and Fire.

When Kvothe sets Ambrose’s room on fire.

Those lovely moments when karma is restored and that annoying little sod gets just whats coming to him, or when your favourite character has battled against everything and everyone and succeeded even though all the odds where against them.

You know that moment when you just think HA! with defiance.


G R R Martin has spectacular command over the 2nd and 3rd points, ***SPOILER ALERT*** I mean killing off basically all the main characters in the first and second book, totally threw me. But it made me read more and more. Then bringing them back to life was like WTH!!! Mind just went POP!


But anyway you may all have known these things, and well so did I but what I didn’t realise or think about is just how much influence they have over a story, or in fact a reader.

When used correctly they make you read, look at Harry Potter (kids book, yeah right) and Twilight, utter teenage tosh some would say, but they both had me crying at certain points in the book and OMG’ing. So if these not so ‘epic and legendary’ books can do this with these simple techniques shall we say, just image how spectacular my book could be, as I am writing a more seriously fantasy book.


And well its exciting, and really helps to stoke that writing fire. I know a lot of interesting ideas came to me after thinking on these techniques and how I can use them.


Well I just wanted to share, possibly inspire, and give any budding/struggling writers something to think on, some fuel for their fires.


Until next time, adieu 🙂


100 Books in 1 year challenge – week two update and review

Published August 18, 2013 by claire2903

Well I have finally finished my week 2 book. And boy was it long!

A Dance with Dragons – G R R Martin

The fifth book in a song of ice and fire series.
This was so much better than the last. Its like a totally different author has wrote the book!
The story flowed and had brillient pace.
It kept my attention with the right amounts of action, scheming, plotting and twists.
But also it still ‘filled out’ the characters stories without dragging its heals.
There were plenty of OMG! moments. Oodles of the page turning writing I had become accustomed to from Mr Martin in his first three books. And the ending chapters.
What can I say?

Please hurry with the next book! I think about covers it really 🙂

Mr Martin back on his first book of this series’ form.

My score for this book 5/5 – Its restored my passion and hunger for this story. If he carries on like this, it will be epic!

Im hopefully going away this week so my holiday reads will be

Assassin’s Apprentice (Farseer Trilogy)  – Robin Hobb
The Dwarves – Markus Heitz
Magicians Guild – Trudi Canavan

See you next week 🙂

100 books in a year challenge – week one update and review

Published August 9, 2013 by claire2903

I will be doing these little updates and reviews each week for my 100 books in a year challenge.

I thought it would be good, and a form of proof 😉 , to write a review of each of the books I have read.

The reviews will not only help people who haven’t read the books to decide if they should read them, they will also help me when looking back with my own writing.

So here goes:


Feast for Crows – G R R Martin

George Martins fourth book in his song of ice and fire series.
I must admit I found this one a little hard to read, it was quite slow in a lot of parts and drawn out. Its probably needed as everyone’s stories need padding out and moving on, etc.
I was looking forward to Samwell’s story but found it pretty boring, which is a bit of a let down for me, but this hasn’t stopped me wanting to read the next book, if only for pure ‘I must read all the books in a series OCD’
There was a few parts though that I remember thinking oh my word! which saves the book slightly.

My score for this book is 3/5. Fair read, but being part of a series helped.

Tigana – G G Kay

This is a stand alone book and quite old. I hadn’t heard of it before it was recommended to me, but I’m glad it was!
It has a good pace and story line. There are a lot of ‘big’ words in there and did have a feel of over thesaurus’ing but that doesn’t detract too much from the over all feel of the story.
In fact it could be said that its fairly fitting actually.
There are quite a few Oh my Gosh moments and you want to share the news you have learnt with someone else who has read the story.
It really drew me in and I may have gotten a little involved with the story. There are a few parts that make you feel genuinely sorry and sad for certain characters. The story does have a feel of Tolkien to it as well as Rothfuss.
I think The Tolkien feel comes from the fact the author helped Christopher Tolkien edit the Silmarillion. As for Rothfuss, Pat’s probably read Tigana.

My score for this book 5/5. Great read, if you haven’t read it go get it!


Well hope that helps someone 🙂

Mother has finished the Oath of Fealty and Also the Echo of Betrayal. Her next book is going to be The hobbit – J R R Tolkien.

My next book is going to be Dance with Dragons – G R R Martin.


See you next Friday with the next review, other blogs may be forth coming before though, so keep ’em peeled 🙂

100 books in 1 year. A challenge.

Published August 4, 2013 by claire2903

Well after reading a posr on the infamous facebook from one of my favourite authors, Pat Rothfuss, I decided I need to read more!
I got 6 of 100 of the best fantasy book.
Shameful I know. Needless to say I have read substantionaly more than 6 fantasy books, it just appears ive have been reading the wrong ones!
So as apart of the 100 things to do to become a better writer list (I will find links to the 100 books and 100 things to do and post in comments or edit the post and drop them in at the bottom)
I have decided to read 100 per year. I am also coupling this with read all the books on a certain list, roughly over 100 books. The link to this list is on the 100 things to do list.

It is advised that challenging someone to a small competition with it, and this has not only sparked the love of stories inside me but the gambler, competitive need to win and excited learner.

So I have challenged the one person who could read more books, possibly, than me in a year. My mother.

We started on the first of August this year and will finish on first of August next year.

I have started with
Feast for Crows – G R R Martin.
I know I should have read this by now but I havent, so a good choice I think.

Mother has started with
Oath of Fealty – Elizabeth Moon. Good set of books and part of the Paksennarion books.

This evening I have finished Feast for Crows and I have started
Tigana – Guy G Kay.

We have to read roughly 2 books a week, so wish us luck 🙂

I will update as often as I can on this challenge. Probably with the names of books read this month in this posts comments then a re cap and musing near the beginning of each month 🙂

Training, tension and tears.

Published July 30, 2013 by claire2903

It’s been eight days since my last post and oh my what an eight days!

There’s been several trips to the vets with various animals,

Milo (st Bernard) went to meet the vet an have a sniff, then back again to be weighed (nearly 15 st!!) and injections (booo)

Sadie (puppy weimaraner) to be checked out then back again for her jabs 😦

And Shadow and Shade the kittens to be checked. Good job we went with these two as Shadow is apparently a boy, after I was told by the person I bought them from they were both girls. Good job I picked a unisex name huh?

The summer holidays are now upon us also, so I have an 8 yr old and a 2.5 yr old at home, so my house is quite literally a zoo 🙂

I’ve also been gardening, with the help of my younger brother. He’s not half bad at gardening, but he doesnt want to do it as a living go figure 🙂

So my garden is now a lot neater, and I can actually think about getting fairy lights to wrap around the trees and hang on the privet (nasty horrible green stuff!)
I have a strong dislike for privet, but unfortunately I can’t pull it down…. Yet!

But none of this has stopped me from working on my books though, in fact my books are my escape from the madness that surrounds me!

I’ve been working on place names and the map of my little world. This isn’t as easy as it sounds.

Firstly i had to decide on a collective name for everywhere sort of like a country name or continent name.

Then I drew out a map, looks more like a pissed spider fell in the ink pot and wobbled across the page but hey, I understand it!. This helped me work out how many names I would need.

Thirdly I have, had to work out from the continent name to the country names to the regions, counties, boroughs to towns and villages. And the seas, lakes, forests and mountains.

I must admit this is still being worked on, but at least I had an idea of what goes where and that it needs a name. I think this is important for me, in my story writing as it helps to keep a degree of consistency in the story.

It also helps with building back stories for characters, especially once I’ve put some thought in to what regions look and sound like, I can then describe characters that come from there better.

I’ve also been thinking about the type of characters I want, as in elves and pirates. I’ve always loved these types of characters dearly.

Plus I’m wondering can you write a serious type of story that has some all together unserious parts in it?
I’m think you can, if you take the lord of the rings and the hobbit for example. There are some very serious bits in that (the wraiths, Mordor, Frodo’s capture and Sam’s heroic rescue of him) and some very comical bits too (Bert, Bill and Tom deciding how to cook the dwarfs and Mr Baggins)

Tolkien made this work beautifully, but I haven’t seen it much else where, I admit I may not be reading the right books but still.

I wondering if you can get the comical, and slightly sarcastic humor of a Disc world books to mesh well with the seriousness of the Paksennarion books or Song of Ice and Fire books?

I’ve also been pondering how people would react to changes from the normal, like friendly trolls that are semi intelligent, or stupid elves, pretty orcs etc etc, basically turning everything people know and believe about fantasy characters 180 and doing the opposite or ‘unexpected’.

Would it make for an interesting riveting read? or just annoy and bore?

Weekly Writing Challenge: Recipe for Disaster

Published July 22, 2013 by claire2903

The recipe for me

I doubt this is something Mr Oliver or Mr Ramsey would serve, but I recon they’d love the recipe 🙂

It may also be a bit long!


1 (Pretty) Thirty something body and face, with pretty feet.

1 (childish) Mind.

A good handful of sarcasm.

A library of books and films, good ones.

1 tbsp Procrastination.

250 g self doubt.

3 Large dollops of humor, Dry not Vanilla.

Frequent morning, afternoon, and evening sleeps, in fact just lots of sleep.

150 ml Confidence.

A Large pinch of Over Opinionation (yes that’s a word).

A Dash of contradiction.

3 tins of blackcurrant cider preferable cold.

Helpings of mad friends.

A love of playing LOTRO (lord of the rings online, noob)

2 Small children.

1 large dog, and 1 puppy.

2 Cats.

1 Loving mother.

1 Loving, but insane husband.

Chocolate, Wine and Crisps. In that order.

1 Foul mouth.

An obsession with shoes.

A deep and unyielding love of Red Dwarf.

An extensive knowledge of everything.

A modest talent in writing, cooking and love making.

A love of rock and metal (Limp Bizkit, 5 Finger death punch, Green Day, etc etc etc)

A touch of OCD.

Oh and a fondness for stupid Youtube videos (The banana song by the minions. Their taking the hobbits to isengard, gard, gard ,gard. I’ve got a jar of dirt. why has the rum gone. To name a few)


A Shock of red hair

3 Tattoo’s (1 ill planned)

Aviator sun glasses

Brightly coloured and/or highly pattern clothing

1 Bright yellow, convertible Saab.

Eyes, for the back of the head


Combine all ingredients in a 3 bed roomed house in the country side.

Do not add spiders, or any insects.

Stress until just risen.

Let marinade for two weeks, until appropriately behaved.

Take with a pinch of salt.

May cry, uncontrollably, if exposed to stupidity or Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows part two.

Keep out of direct sunlight and ear shot of the easily offended and/or idiotic.

Works well with others, usually. Can be served with chicken, beef or fish.

Love whole heartedly, and you will achieve complete satisfaction 🙂