What Makes a Good Book Review?

Book Reviews - Lauren Mayhew AuthorI’ve always wondered what people like to see in a book review. As an author, any review 3 stars or more is greatly appreciated. Even a 3 star review can mean that the reader enjoyed the book, they just didn’t love it. Every review is appreciated by an author, indie or not.

One of my most liked posts on here is a book review. I wrote it almost two years ago now, and it still gets views. I do wonder sometimes how people stumble upon that post. It made me think why that review was so popular. If people enjoyed it enough to like the post, it meant the format of the review must have been to certain people’s taste. You can find it here.

These are the 5 steps that I use to write my reviews. Continue reading “What Makes a Good Book Review?”

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Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare - Lauren Mayhew AuthorClockwork Angel – Cassandra Clare – 5 Stars

The Clockwork Angel is the first in the trilogy of ‘The Infernal Devices’. The first time I read this book must have been in 2010 after finding it in my local library, and I instantly fell in love with it. It’s now one of my favourite books ever. I’ve read it quite a few times, and it never lets me down. I only wish that I’d written this review after the first time of reading the book. It would be great to see what I thought of it back then!

Blurb: Magic is dangerous – but love is more dangerous still… When sixteen-year-old Tessa Gray arrives in England during the reign of Queen Victoria, something terrifying is waiting for her in London’s Downworld, where vampires, warlocks and other supernatural folk stalk the gaslit streets.

Friendless and hunted, Tessa seeks refuge with the Shadowhunters, a band of warriors dedicated to ridding the world of demons. Drawn ever deeper into their world, she finds herself fascinated by – and torn between – two best friends and quickly realizes that love may be the most dangerous magic of all. Continue reading “Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare”

Rigel by Eli Ingle

Rigel by Eli Ingle - Lauren Mayhew AuthorRigel (Appointments on Plum Street Book 1)  –  Eli Ingle  –  3.5 Stars

Blurb: Appointments on Plum Street is a series set across six worlds, three dimensions and multiple times zones. The first book, Rigel, starts the story as we see the young orphan Rigel on Earth, miserable and alone. Then one night his life is changed forever when a crew of airship pilots tear through the sky and offer to take him to another world.

On their journey they come across other children and Rigel finds that they are all at the centre of a legend thousands of years old … and he has no memory being part of it. The children are the Light Ones and the only hope of saving each planet against The Darkness. Continue reading “Rigel by Eli Ingle”

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling - Lauren MayhewHarry Potter and the Cursed Child – J.K. Rowling – 4 Stars

Blurb: It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband, and father of three school-age children.

While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.

I was so excited to read this, and though I tried to hang on in the hope that I’d see it on stage first, I couldn’t. Tickets are almost impossible to get, and when it comes to Harry Potter, I have no willpower.

The fact that I managed to read this in the space of a few hours is a testament to how good it is. I couldn’t put it down – I just had to know how it would end. Continue reading “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – J.K. Rowling”

United As One – Pittacus Lore

United as One by Pittacus Lore - Lauren MayhewUnited As One – Pittacus Lore – 5 Stars

Blurb: The Mogadorian invasion has come to Earth, and they have all but won the battle for our planet. Their warships loom over our most populous cities – like New York City, Tokyo, Moscow, Beijing, and New Delhi – and no army will risk making a move against them. The Garde are all that stand in their way . . . but they are no longer alone in this fight. Human teens from across the globe, like John Smith’s best friend, Sam Goode, have begun to develop Legacies of their own.

The Garde have always known there is power in numbers. If they can find these new allies and join forces with them, they just might be able to win this war. The time has come for the Garde to make their final stand.

This is the last in the series of the Lorien Legacies, and I’m not 100% sure I’m ready for it to be over. Part of me was so excited to get my hands on this book, and the other part of me is quite sad. This was the last book series I’ve been waiting to complete, so it’s like the end of Harry Potter all over again. Excuse me while I go cry in the corner…

Continue reading “United As One – Pittacus Lore”

The Diamond of Darkhold – Jeanne DuPrau

The Diamond of Darkhold by Jeanne DuPrau

The Diamond of Darkhold – Jeanne DuPrau – 3.5 Stars

Blurb: It’s been several months since Lina and Doon escaped the dying city of Ember and, along with the rest of their people, joined the town of Sparks.

Now, struggling through the harsh winter aboveground, they find an unusual book. Torn up and missing most of its pages, it alludes to a mysterious device from before the Disaster, which they believe is still in Ember.

Together, Lina and Doon must go back underground to retrieve what was lost and bring light to a dark world.

I’m really not sure what to write about this book. I didn’t hate it, hence the 3.5 stars, but I didn’t love it either. In the end, it all just got a little silly. I appreciate that Lina and Doon found the way out of Ember, but I refuse to believe that they were the only two citizens of Sparks who thought it may be beneficial to go back to there. Continue reading “The Diamond of Darkhold – Jeanne DuPrau”

The People of Sparks – Jeanne DuPrau

The People of Sparks by Jeanne DuPrauThe People of Sparks – Jeanne DuPrau – 4 Stars

Blurb: When the people of the underground city of Ember follow Lina and Doon to the surface, little prepares them for what they will encounter. Leaving behind the darkness that has been their home for generations, they discover a world of colour, warmth and light. The people of the small village of Sparks seem willing to help them . . . at first . . . but life on the surface has it’s dark side too. 

Before long the villagers of Sparks become more reluctant to share their precious resources with the strange, new underground people. Lina and Doon watch in horror as the differences between the two groups grow into resentment, anger and hate. Somehow they must help overcome the distrust and bring the people of Ember and Sparks together. Continue reading “The People of Sparks – Jeanne DuPrau”

The City of Ember – Jeanne DuPrau

The City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrauThe City of Ember – Jeanne DuPrau – 5 Stars

Blurb: Many hundreds of years ago, the city of Ember was created by the Builders to contain everything needed for human survival. It worked – but now the storerooms are almost out of food, crops are blighted, corruption is spreading through the city and worst of all – the lights are failing.

Soon Ember could be engulfed by darkness-But when two children, Lina and Doon, discover fragments of an ancient parchment, they begin to wonder if there could be a way out of Ember. 

Can they decipher the words from long ago and find a new future for everyone? Will the people of Ember listen to them?

I watched the film adaption of this book for the first time a few years ago and I really enjoyed it. I had a vague memory of having read the book, or a story like it before, so I really wanted to read it again. I was shocked to see that there were four books in the series! Continue reading “The City of Ember – Jeanne DuPrau”

Lady Oracle – Margaret Atwood

Lady Oracle by Margaret AttwoodLady Oracle – Margaret Atwood – 3 Stars

Blurb:

From fat girl to thin, from red hair to mud brown, from London to Toronto, from Polish count to radical husband, from writer of romances to distinguished poet – Joan Foster is utterly confused by her life of multiple identiities.

She decides to escape to an Italian hill town to take stock of her life. But first, she must organise her own death…

I tried to give this 4 stars, but I couldn’t. From the very beginning I had absolutely no idea what was going on but I kept reading because I presumed it would all be resolved in the end. But it wasn’t. I still have no idea what the point of this book was. Continue reading “Lady Oracle – Margaret Atwood”

Emerge: The Edge – Melissa A. Craven

Emerge The Edge by Melissa CravenEmerge: The Edge – Melissa A. Craven  – 4 Stars

Blurb: Alienated by everything that sets him apart, Aidan McBrien suffers in silence.
He is the most powerful Immortal of his generation, but he chooses to live behind a mask to protect himself, even from those he loves. They can never know how much he struggles just to get through each day, overwhelmed by the pain and loss of everyone around him. As Aidan fights a constant battle to control the gifts that threaten to push him over the edge, he dreads the day his world will look to him to fulfill a prophecy he doesn’t believe in. Continue reading “Emerge: The Edge – Melissa A. Craven”