Books and Giveaways.

Book giveaways on a number of sites along with ARC's

Well bit late in the day but I hope everyone had a super Christmas and New Year. I certainly did very traditional with lots of family time, quality food and drinking, mainly eggnog – I think I have mentioned I am a bit of a eggnog addict!

January is always a bit of a downer isn’t it but mine has been has been worse than normal as my car died! Yea sad really, got it fixed but cost me an arm and a leg thank goodness for payday loans, I used Ferratum Ca if anyone looking for a loan company I thought it was the best out of the ones I looked at and i have been very happy with their service. Other than that and a cold mid month everything is OK and I have had my new mini IPad 4 to play with. I downloaded Kindle for the IPad and since then I have been spending my vouchers and downloading a veritable library of must have books. I have also got myself signed up with Net Gallery. For those of you who have not come across this before it is a site where authors and publishers introduce new books. You can request to become an ARC reader. ARC – advanced reader copy lets readers have an copy of a book to review. You might have seen this on Amazon or Goodreads reviews…”I received this book in return for an honest opinion etc etc”. Net Gallery is one of the sites that this can be done. You can even get a badge but I am still in the early stages of this so will see how it goes. You write up your review on the site and they do ask if you will also place it on Amazon and Goodreads.  I have read three from there now, one I totally disliked (a first for me) and one that I stayed up all night reading enjoyed it so much; on the third book now. I don’t like to write the story when I review although a lot of people do. I prefer to give my impressions on the story how it grabs (or doesn’t grab) me, the style and the overall storyline. I would be interested in what others think is a good review, does it spill the entire story or simply conveys your reasons for liking or disliking the book? I am looking to improve my review writing so input would be gratefully received.

I have also discovered a great site with some free giveaways and chance to win a lot more. It is DiscoverScFi, really recommend you go take a look and get in with a chance of winning. I received the book Nomad when I joined and I am just about to start reading it. Will give you a review next time.


Robin Mckinley and Strong Female Protagonists in Fantasy


Robert McKinley's The Hero and The Crown - one of my favourites

One of my all time favourites

I have had a bit of a reading binge this past month, not so much new novels but old favourites. I was in the mood for something on the empowerment of women, a strong female character that does not have to be saved. Ok so some stuff going on for me at the moment but don’t want to dwell on it, suffice to say I am dealing with it!

One of the first books I read in the fantasy genre was by Robin McKinley; not luck it was one of the first, I had a very interesting teacher who was a strong believer in women’s rights at a time when it was a topic of conversation not a fact. Ms McKinley has a reputation for writing about strong female protagonists who were definitely not without faults but they overcame difficulties that most of us can identify with. Ok you can argue the books are fantasy with vampire and strange surroundings but still the books describe how adversity can be dealt with, without the knight on shining armour.

I actually read Sunshine first but then I read The Hero and The Crown; this last book has proven popular within feminist literature. The book advocates a woman has the right to a say in her own destiny and a say in how it is achieved. Whilst this book comes under the genre of Teens/Young adult it makes an excellent read for an adult. I have recommended it many times to friends and always got good feedback. It also appears in a number of fantasy best read lists. If you have never read any of her work I recommend you start with this one, which is the prequel to Blue Sword. Sunshine I still love but vampire novels are not for everyone.

What do like to see in your female characters? Who is your favourite author, let me know and let the discussions begin…