All posts for the month August, 2013

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 🙂