Mini Review: The Intern by Gabrielle Tozer

The Intern The Intern Book One
Written by Gabrielle Tozer
Contemporary, Coming of Age, Romance
Published February 1st 2014
336 Pages
Add to Goodreads
Josie Browning dreams of having it all.

A stellar academic record, an amazing career in journalism, and for her current crush to realise she actually exists. The only problem? Josie can’t get through twenty four hours without embarrassing her sister Kat or her best friend Angel, let alone herself.

Josie’s luck changes though when she lands an internship at the glossy fashion magazine Sash. A coveted columnist job is up for grabs, but Josie’s got some tough competition in the form of two other interns. Battle lines are drawn and Josie quickly learns that the magazine industry is far from easy, especially under the reign of powerful editor, Rae Swanson.

From the lows of coffee fetching and working 10 hour days, to the highs of mingling with celebrities, scoring endless free beauty products, plus falling for her cousin’s seriously gorgeous flatmate James, this is one year Josie will never forget.
In high school, Josie Browning was just another face in the crowd. But now she's about to take her first steps out into the real world when she finds herself interning at Sash, one of the hottest women's magazines and a far cry from the world of journalism that Josie had her heart set upon. She's a fashion tragic with two left feet, awkward and perhaps the biggest disaster that will stumble through the doors of Sash, but at least she'll have twelve weeks to make an impression.
'Ah, hi. Yes, Josie. Browning. I mean, hi, I'm Browning, Josie Browning.'
'Um, just to be clear, I didn't mean to sound like James Bond then,' I said.
The stakes are high, as Josie realises she's vying against two other interns for a cash prize that would change not only her life, but that of her single mother. She needs this and is determined to become the confident young woman she's always dreamed of.

If only it were that easy around James, her cousins attractive roommate and current owner of the couch she'll call home for two nights per week. After talking until sunrise, Josie floats through her day at Sash unable to think of anything other than James and it becomes apparent that Josie now has a new reason to venture into the city. Josie's life has always been a series of humiliating incidents, social awkwardness and learning to settle, but now it's Brazilian waxes, stray nipples and a rockstar who can't keep his hands to himself. Josie will have it all, or die of embarrassment trying.

Kelly's Thoughts

The Intern is simply fabulous and Josie is one of the most realistic and charismatic characters I've ever had the pleasure of reading. She's the shy girl, intelligent but lacks life experience which will endear her to readers.
My life was an ongoing series of humiliating incidents wrapped in a box of shame and tied with a bow of awkwardness.
She's passionate about Journalism, so when her course placement sees her at Sash magazine, Josie is under no illusions that she's in way over her head. Sash is cutthroat, and Josie finds herself with a cash incentive should she place first in the Intern stakes. But life is about to become far more complicated than Josie anticipated, a malicious Intern, a stern editor and a love interest she can't have.

Josie did seem to have opportunities in abundance. The internship opened doors within Sash to celebrity interviews and even her first byline, which I'm sure even junior authors wouldn't normally receive. But even though her experience was fictional, there's no denying it made for an entertaining and incredibly fun experience. I must admit that I expected a little more The Devil Wears Prada, but Sash wasn't nearly as competitive and viscous.

It's wonderfully written, sassy and unpretentious. A brilliant debut from Gabrielle Tozer. Josie's story had me reading long into the early hours of the morning and I can't wait for the sequel, Faking It.

The Bookish Best Of... My Favourite Reads of 2014

This year I've read over one hundred and eighty five books, and that isn't counting the ones I failed to finish. Clearly I have no life. But in that huge bundle of books, thirty nine I've rated at five stars. It's been a really good year. So this week I'm showing you a few of my favourites that you need to read.

Impulse by Vanessa Garden

Impulse Submerged Sun Book Two
Written by Vanessa Garden
Check out my review of Captivate
Fantasy, Romance
Published December 1st 2014
288 Pages
Add to Goodreads
When Miranda Sun returns to Marin on the eve of her eighteenth birthday, this time of her own free will, she quickly learns that her worst fears have been realised. The glittering underwater city is not as she had left it, nor too is Marko, the young king who has dominated her thoughts and heart for the last twelve months since leaving Marin.

Miranda, however, has not made the journey to Marin alone, and now must contend with not only Marko’s evil brother Damir but more surprisingly her sister Lauren who has an agenda of her own. Marko’s power begins to wane and with cracks beginning to show in the domed Utopian city, and veiled danger lurking everywhere, she quickly learns that in this dazzling city full of beautiful people she can trust no one but herself.

If Miranda wants to survive, she must decide between the hardened sensibilities in her head and the hungers of her heart. Will her decision cause more heartache or can she help to save Marko’s throne?
It's been twelve months since Miranda was taken from the surface and now she's back on dry land, living a life that no longer feels her own. But as her eighteenth birthday approaches, Miranda has a decision to make, stay with her grandparents and sister Lauren, or return to Marin. But when she returns with Marko to the underwater kingdom, she wasn't prepared for the emotional distance the young King has put between them. Tension within the castle is palpable, Damir is alive if only for the sake of Sylvia, Marko's sister and the woman the raised him as her own. Guard and Marko's most trusted friend Robbie has left the castle after the showdown with Sylvia and Marko will stop at nothing to protect his sister. But Miranda knows she can't be trusted.

But Marco refuses to listen, and has a secret of his own he seems desperate to hide. Loyalties will be tested the King tries to hold onto his reign. It's more than Miranda's life now at stake as the battle to lead Marin into a new future emerges.

My Thoughts

Impulse begins almost twelve months after Miranda has returned to the surface, and her thoughts soon return to her promise to Marko, to return to Marin on her eighteenth birthday. Torn between not wanting to leave her grandparents, now the only parents she knows and living with Marko, calling the underwater kingdom home. But with sister Lauren ensuring their safety, it's time for Miranda to take a chance on the king that was once her reluctant captor. In Marin, the women are unable to conceive, and the hope of the citizens rest upon Miranda and the King to carry Marin into the next generation.

Twin siblings Sylvia and Damir cannot be trusted, and Miranda knows all too well. But loyalty to Sylvia continues to cloud Marko's judgement and refuses to listen to Miranda's pleas, but allows her concerns to drive a wedge between them. Where I warmed to Marko in Captivate, in Impulse he was downright cold and unforgiving. Miranda has given up her life, her family and seeing the sun for a life underwater and it seems she isn't wanted. Rumours of other women entertaining Marko in Miranda's absence are rife throughout the palace, but Miranda's biggest issue is now Lauren, demanding to live within Marin as well. Lauren's character set me on edge. Her endless flirting with any male that moved, she demands to be the center of attention even though it's finally Miranda's time to shine. 

Without a doubt my favourite character from both captivate and Impulse is Robbie. The former guard and most trusted friend of the King. He's incredibly lovely and a pleasure to read. The romance, or lack thereof was actually more engaging and realistic, no instant and awkward declarations of love but rather frustrating, slow burning and delicious. As indecisive as I find myself about Miranda, I admire her fire and ability to uphold morals, even at the sake of her own happiness. She's adamant that Sylvia is working against Marko and is willing to risk her tentative relationship to ensure Marko's safety. 

I absolutely adore the world Vanessa Garden has created, a complex underwater world that breathes life into the characters. Not as strong as Captivate, but Impulse is a worthy sequel that focuses on character development, surprising revelations and the politics of a brewing revolution. Looking forward to the series finale and seeing what becomes of Marin and the two young lovers.

This Shattered World Blog Tour, Art and Giveaway

As part of the This Shattered World tour, I'm thrilled to be able to share an exclusive quote and magnificent piece of art with thanks to the lovely girls at The Midnight Garden and artist Tiffany Fay. This Shattered World is simply phenomenal. 

Check out my review by clicking here
These Broken Stars Review
This Night So Dark Review
Scroll down for exclusive artwork and giveaway
Open to US / Canadian residents only
The second installment in the epic Starbound trilogy introduces a new pair of star crossed lovers on two sides of a bloody war.

Jubilee Chase and Flynn Cormac should never have met.

Lee is captain of the forces sent to Avon to crush the terraformed planet's rebellious colonists, but she has her own reasons for hating the insurgents.

Rebellion is in Flynn's blood. Terraforming corporations make their fortune by recruiting colonists to make the inhospitable planets livable, with the promise of a better life for their children. But they never fulfilled their promise on Avon, and decades later, Flynn is leading the rebellion.

Desperate for any advantage in a bloody and unrelentingly war, Flynn does the only thing that makes sense when he and Lee cross paths: he returns to base with her as prisoner. But as his fellow rebels prepare to execute this tough-talking girl with nerves of steel, Flynn makes another choice that will change him forever. He and Lee escape the rebel base together, caught between two sides of a senseless war.
Visit the These Broken Stars Website for the latest news on the series and follow the authors on Twitter at AmieKaufman and MeaganSpooner. This Shattered World is available to preorder with fun swag, and will be released in North America on December the 23rd 2014. For my fellow Aussies, This Shattered World is out now and available where all good books are sold.

The Bookish Best Of... Books That Surprised Us in 2014

From the underwhelming, the over hyped and those surprise reads that I didn't expect to be so incredible. Even those I'm surprised that I didn't burn, which seems to make up the majority of my list. So which ones delighted and which titles disappointed? Here's the books that surprised me in 2014.

Eren by Simon P. Clark

Written by Simon P. Clark
Middle Grade, Fantasy
Published November 2014
208 Pages
Thank you to Allen and Unwin
Add to Goodreads
People are keeping secrets from Oli. His mum has brought him to stay with his aunt and uncle in the countryside, but nobody will tell him why his dad isn't with them. Where is he? Has something happened? Oli has a hundred questions, but then he finds a secret of his own. He discovers the creature that lives in the attic... Eren.

Eren is not human. Eren is hungry for stories. Eren has been waiting for him.

Sharing his stories with Eren, Oli starts to make sense of what's happening downstairs with his family. But what if it's a trap? Soon, Oli must make a choice. Learn the truth, or abandon himself to Eren's world, forever.

Captive by Aimée Carter

Contains mild spoilers for Pawn
The Blackcoat Rebellion: Book Two
Written by Aimée Carter
Check out my review for Pawn
Dystopian, Science Fiction
Published December 2014
For the past two months, Kitty Doe’s life has been a lie. Forced to impersonate the Prime Minister’s niece, her frustration grows as her trust in her fake fiancé cracks, her real boyfriend is forbidden and the Blackcoats keep her in the dark more than ever.

But in the midst of discovering that her role in the Hart family may not be as coincidental as she thought, she’s accused of treason and is forced to face her greatest fear. Elsewhere. A prison where no one can escape.

As one shocking revelation leads to the next, Kitty learns the hard way that she can trust no one, not even the people she thought were on her side. With her back against the wall, Kitty wants to believe she’ll do whatever it takes to support the rebellion she believes in, but is she prepared to pay the ultimate price?

Buddy Read with Gina: Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas

Dangerous Girls
Written by Abigail Haas
Buddy Review with Gina from Behind The Pages
Crime, Thriller
Published July 18th 2013
400 Pages
Add to Goodreads
It's Spring Break of senior year. Anna, her boyfriend Tate, her best friend Elise, and a few other close friends are off to a debaucherous trip to Aruba that promises to be the time of their lives.

But when Elise is found brutally murdered, Anna finds herself trapped in a country not her own, fighting against vile and contemptuous accusations. As Anna sets out to find her friend's killer, she discovers hard truths about her friendships, the slippery nature of truth, and the ache of young love.

As she awaits the judge's decree, it becomes clear that everyone around her thinks she is not just guilty, but dangerous. When the truth comes out, it is more shocking than one could ever imagine...

The Bookish Best Of... Dodgy Covers of 2014

Whether we want to admit it or not, we're all cover tarts. Yes, even you. We see a pretty cover and it's all over. We must have it, regardless if the synopsis tells us it's about a daredevil midget in a bikini who murders grandmothers. Who cares, as long as the cover is pretty. But what happens when the cover isn't all that? So in fairness of the Pretty Covers of 2014, we need to take a look at the ones that... Umm... Aren't so pretty.

No covers were harmed in the making of this post. Only feelings.

All The Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

All The Bright Places
Written by Jennifer Niven
Expected Publication January 7th 2015
400 Pages
The Fault in Our Stars meets Eleanor and Park in this compelling, exhilarating, and beautiful story about a girl who learns to live from a boy who intends to die.

Theodore Finch is fascinated by death, and he constantly thinks of ways he might kill himself. But each time, something good, no matter how small, stops him.

Violet Markey lives for the future, counting the days until graduation, when she can escape her Indiana town and her aching grief in the wake of her sister's recent death.

When Finch and Violet meet on the ledge of the bell tower at school, it's unclear who saves whom. And when they pair up on a project to discover the 'natural wonders' of their state, both Finch and Violet make more important discoveries, it’s only with Violet that Finch can be himself, a weird, funny, live out loud guy who’s not such a freak after all. And it’s only with Finch that Violet can forget to count away the days and start living them. But as Violet’s world grows, Finch’s begins to shrink.

The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan

Contains mild spoilers for The Lightning Thief

The Sea of Monsters
Percy Jackson and the Olympians: Book Two
Check out my review of The Lightning Thief
Written by Rick Riordan
Fantasy, Mythology
Published January 1st 2006
265 Pages
Add to Goodreads
After a summer spent trying to prevent a catastrophic war among the Greek gods, Percy Jackson finds his seventh grade school year unnervingly quiet. But things don't stay quiet for long. Percy soon discovers that the magical borders which protect Half Blood Hill have been poisoned by a mysterious enemy, and the only safe haven for demigods is on the verge of being overrun by mythological monsters.

To save the camp, Percy needs the help of his best friend, Grover, who has been taken prisoner on an island somewhere in the Sea of Monsters, the dangerous waters Greek heroes have sailed for millennia. But rescuing Grover isn't the only only monumental task that Percy, Annabeth, and Tyson must tackle. If they don't retrieve the Golden Fleece from the Island of the Cyclopes by the end of the summer, Camp Half Blood will be destroyed.

The Bookish Best Of... Wherefore art thou book?

What happens when that book you've been waiting to be released... Is never actually released? If you're anything like me, I go hunting for an explanation as to why. Tweeting an author, checking their website, even comments on the unreleased book page on Goodreads. Have you been waiting on a book that is seemingly never going to be released? Today I'm sharing mine...

Secret Santa Aussie Blog Hop

As part of the Australian YA Bloggers and Readers Secret Santa Blog Hop, we want to know whether you've been a good or naughty blogger this year.

This blog hop is for the participants of the Aussie YA Bloggers Secret Santa list to help you find out more about your fellow Santas and Santees and hopefully find out who your Santa is!

A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray

A Thousand Pieces of You Firebird Book One
Written by Claudia Gray
Science Fiction, Time Travel
Published October 7th 2014
360 Pages
Thank you to Keep it Fictional
Add to Goodreads
Marguerite Caine’s physicist parents are known for their radical scientific achievements. Their most astonishing invention: the Firebird, which allows users to jump into parallel universes, some vastly altered from our own. But when Marguerite’s father is murdered, the killer, her parent’s handsome and enigmatic assistant Paul, escapes into another dimension before the law can touch him.

Marguerite can’t let the man who destroyed her family go free, and she races after Paul through different universes, where their lives entangle in increasingly familiar ways. With each encounter she begins to question Paul’s guilt, and her own heart. Soon she discovers the truth behind her father’s death is more sinister than she ever could have imagined.

A Thousand Pieces of You explores a reality where we witness the countless other lives we might lead in an amazingly intricate multiverse, and ask whether, amid infinite possibilities, one love can endure.
The Firebird is a scientific marvel, a complex pendant allowing dimensional travel where Marguerite now finds herself hunting her father's killer. Paul Markov was undergraduate student, working under her father on the Firebird project, turning the dream of multidimensional travel into a reality. But only weeks after the project is proven a success, their laboratory is in ruin, data destroyed and her father killed by the person he entrusted into his home. But Marguerite isn't making the arduous journey alone. The charismatic and scientific genius Theo is determined to find Paul, his former friend that is the only suspect in the death of his beloved mentor.
My hate is stronger than the dimensions, stronger than memory, stronger than time. My hate is now the truest part of who I am.
But it seems than Paul isn't escaping, but tracking a trail of deception throughout the dimensions, and Marguerite is one step behind. It isn't until the Firebrand breaks and Marguerite finds herself as the daughter of a Russian Tsar, that she begins to learn the truth. About the project, about Paul and the simmering passion she uncovers.

kelly's thoughts

A Thousand Pieces of You is a a science fiction romance that will leave you utterly breathless. It was more than a science fiction thriller, but a sultry and intense romance. Reminiscent of Cristin Terrill's All Our Yesterdays, it follows the story of Marguerite, an artist amidst a family of scientific genius. Her parents both brilliant inventors, and has spent her seventeen years sharing her home with undergraduate students that her parents have taken in and nurtured. Including young protégés Paul and Theo. But when it seems her parents life work is destroyed, her father killed and Paul fleeing the scene with what he believes is the only Firebird prototype and has now become the only suspect... And Marguerite wants revenge.

With Theo by her side, the two transport themselves throughout the dimensions. Only able to follow Paul into alternative worlds that where they already exist, Marguerite, Paul and Theo materialise into the body of their other self. It isn't until Marguerite finds herself as a Princess and daughter of a Russian Tsar, that she is forced to confront Paul. With her Firebird in ruin and Theo unable to jump into her world, Paul is adamant of his innocence. But if he didn't kill her father, than who did? It seems the lives of the Princess and her Lieutenant are heavily entwined and it isn't long before Marguerite finds old feelings beginning to resurface. But Theo can't be convinced of Paul's innocence and Marguerite begins to suspect that Theo's motives may not be seeking justice for her father's death, but proving Paul's guilt.

the final verdict

It was beautifully written and a stunning blend of romance, science fiction and flourished with passion and suspense. The romance is sultry, intense and will have readers yearning for Lieutenant Markov. I'm curious to see what the second installment of the Firebird series will bring, as the conclusion of A Thousand Pieces of You felt befitting and complete. And that cover ain't half bad either.

I Was Here by Gayle Forman

I Was Here
Written By Gayle Forman
Contemporary, Realistic Fiction
Expected Publication January 2015
352 Pages
Cody and Meg were inseparable.
Two peas in a pod.
Until... They weren’t anymore.

When her best friend Meg drinks a bottle of industrial-strength cleaner alone in a motel room, Cody is understandably shocked and devastated. She and Meg shared everything, so how was there no warning? But when Cody travels to Meg’s college town to pack up the belongings left behind, she discovers that there’s a lot that Meg never told her. About her old roommates, the sort of people Cody never would have met in her dead-end small town in Washington. About Ben McAllister, the boy with a guitar and a sneer, who broke Meg’s heart. And about an encrypted computer file that Cody can’t open, until she does, and suddenly everything Cody thought she knew about her best friend’s death gets thrown into question.

I Was Here is Gayle Forman at her finest, a taut, emotional, and ultimately redemptive story about redefining the meaning of family and finding a way to move forward even in the face of unspeakable loss.

Slip by David Estes Review and Giveaway

Slip: Book One
Written by David Estes
Dystopian, Science Fiction
Published June 16th 2014
Thank you to David Estes and Lola's Blog Tours
Someone must die before another can be born...

As sea levels rise and livable landmasses shrink, the Reorganized United States of America has instituted population control measures to ensure there are sufficient resources and food to sustain the growing population. Birth authorization must be paid for and obtained prior to having a child. Someone must die before another can be born, keeping the country in a population neutral position at what experts consider to be the optimal population. The new laws are enforced by a ruthless government organization known as Pop Con, responsible for terminating any children resulting from unauthorized births, and any illegals who manage to survive past their second birthday, at which point they are designated a national security threat and given the name Slip.

But what if one child slipped through the cracks? What if someone knew all the loopholes and how to exploit them? Would it change anything? Would the delicate resource balance be thrown into a tailspin, threatening the lives of everyone?

And how far would the government go to find and terminate the Slip?

In a gripping story of a family torn apart by a single choice, Slip is a reminder of the sanctity of a single life and the value of the lives we so often take for granted.
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