British Books Challenge 2014: The round up!

The British Book Challenge was set up to show support for British Authors. By signing up I promised to read at least 12 books by British Authors. That’s equal to one book a month.

It’s safe to say that I exceeded this challenge this year.

Kiss Me First

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How did I get it?:
I borrowed it from Beth!

Synopsis:

A chilling and intense first novel, the story of a solitary young woman drawn into an online world run by a charismatic web guru who entices her into impersonating a glamorous but desperate woman.

When Leila discovers the Web site Red Pill, she feels she has finally found people who understand her. A sheltered young woman raised by her mother, Leila has often struggled to connect with the girls at school; but on Red Pill, a chat forum for ethical debate, Leila comes into her own, impressing the Web site’s founder, a brilliant and elusive man named Adrian. Leila is thrilled when Adrian asks to meet her, flattered when he invites her to be part of “Project Tess.” Tess is a woman Leila might never have met in real life. She is beautiful, urbane, witty, and damaged. As they e-mail, chat, and Skype, Leila becomes enveloped in the world of Tess, learning every single thing she can about this other woman—because soon, Leila will have to become her. An ingeniously plotted novel of stolen identity, Kiss Me First is brilliantly frightening about the lies we tell—to ourselves, to others, for good, and for ill.

Thoughts:

I don’t usually read two thrillers in a row, particularly ones that are quite modern. It just so happens that Kiss Me First was also about the danger of the internet. Kiss Me First focuses more on how the internet makes it so easy to be anyone we want to be. Creepy, really.

Kiss Me First centres around Leila. An only child, who has grown up with a single parent. Her mother suffered from MS. Leila nursed her mother until the very end. Now alone, Leila isolates herself even more. She immerses herself in the internet to escape the real world (oh, how familiar that is to many!) Leila uses chatrooms, she plays games, but then she discovers a philosophical website called Red Pill. It discusses moral dilemmas and the members of the forum debate the issues. Leila is attracted to the charismatic website owner Adrian. It is through Adrian that Leila meets Tess. Tess wants to commit suicide, but she doesn’t want to hurt her family and friends. It is decided that Leila will take on the identity of Tess. Tess tells everyone that she’s moving away to start a new life, but really Tess is going to find a way to kill herself. Leila will take on the online identity of Tess, updating her emails and posting Facebook updates.

I found Kiss Me First to be incredibly gripping, but very hard to read because of its intensity. I can understand why some readers didn’t get on with Leila as a narrator. She’s incredibly isolated and so introverted. I found Leila quite endearing, she was incredibly naïve. She seems so innocent and didn’t realise taking on another person’s identity would be such a challenge. Leila really does become Tess.

I didn’t think this book was perfect though, which is why I’m giving it 3.5 stars. I felt that it started really promising, but then I started to feel like it lost its way. I’d still read another book by Lottie Moggach. I liked her descriptive writing style. I was just let down by the ending.

Would I recommend it?:
Yes- 3.5 stars!

Top Ten Books On My Winter TBR

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. Each week a new list is posted. This week’s Top Ten is Top Ten Books on My Winter TBR list. I failed with my Autumn TBR only reading 2 of my 10 planned, so I’m going to repeat the list adding two Wintery books!

In no particular order.. (click on images for Goodread’s page!)

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Frost Hollow HallEmma Carroll- This book is coming up very soon. I can’t wait to read it. I’ve heard such wonderful things about it.

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Let It Snow- John Green, Maureen Johnson, Lauren Myracle– I can’t wait to get stuck into this one. I love a holiday read!

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Left DrowningJessica Park- I have wanted to read this book for SO long. Hopefully I’ll get round to it this Winter. I loved Flat-Out Love.

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Reconstructing AmeliaKimberly McCreight– I still really want to read this, I just haven’t had the time to get around to it!

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Fever and SeverLauren Destefano- I aim to finish this series by the end of the year, so hopefully I can strike these off my TBR!

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Pretty Girl-13Liz Coley– Again, I’ve been looking forward to this book for a while! I’ve heard such good things!

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Kiss Me FirstLottie Moggach– My sister really enjoyed this book, so I’m looking forward to starting it!

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SlideJill Hathaway– Another book that was recommended to me, some time back, that I hope to get to really soon!

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The Forgotten Ones- Laura Howard– I’m really looking forward to this one, I just don’t seem to have found the time to get around to it yet. I know a lot of blogs I follow seem to have enjoyed it!

Hopefully this Winter I shall finally get around to these books! Please feel free to leave your link to your Top Ten posts and I’ll come and see what’s on your Winter TBR!

Top Ten Books on My Autumn TBR list

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. Each week a new list is posted. This week’s Top Ten is Top Ten Books on My Autumn (Fall) TBR list. I’m going to pick ten that I’ve had for a while and want to get to this season!

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Code Name Verity- Elizabeth Wein- I have heard so much about this book that I just have to read it!

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Left Drowning and Flat Out LoveJessica Park- I have been recommended these books by so many different people. I’ve had them for a while but not got around to reading them yet.

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Reconstructing AmeliaKimberly McCreight- I’ve heard a lot of good things about this book. I love reading debut novels and finding new authors I adore, so I’m intrigued to see if Kimberly McCreight is one of them!

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Fever and SeverLauren Destefano– I’m determined to finish some of the series I’ve started, loved, but haven’t got around to reading.

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Pretty Girl 13- Liz Coley– I’ve seen this on so many Top Ten lists that I think it’s about time to see if it would make any of mine…

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Kiss Me First- Lottie Moggach– Another debut that I’m excited about!

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SlideJill Hathaway- I was recommended this book by a friend, who said it’s a quick and easy read. It sounds good so I bought it! Looking forward to reading it.

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The Forgotten OnesLaura Howard- I’ve had this book for a while, but just haven’t got around to reading it. I’m looking forward to reading it, as a lot of bloggers that enjoy the same books as me have really liked this one!

Have you read any of these books? What are your thoughts? If you’ve got a link to your Top Ten post, feel free to leave it in the comments below, and I’ll come and see what you want to read this Autumn/Fall!

Stacking The Shelves #33- The Birthday Edition: part 1

Click on the image to take you to Tynga's blog to learn more!

Click on the image to take you to Tynga’s blog to learn more!

Stacking The Shelves is all about sharing the books you’re adding to your shelves, be it buying or borrowing. From ‘real’ books you’ve purchased, a book you’ve borrowed, a book you’ve been given or an e-book they can all be shared!

As ever, click on the book image to get to its Goodreads page!

On Monday 19th August it was my birthday! I’m getting my bookish presents from my parents this weekend so I have included what I received from other people and I guess I’ll have more to add to the birthday pile next week.

Borrowed from Bibliobeth:

Every now and then my sister unleashes a stash of books that she’s been storing for me.

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I don’t know anything about these books. Obviously I respect my sister’s opinion on books so if se thinks I’ll like them… then fair enough! I’m particularly intrigued by Reconstructing Amelia from this selection.

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I love Diane Chamberlain’s books so I’m looking forward to reading Necessary Lies. I’m also very excited about reading Kiss Me First. I’m also a huge fan of Jojo Moyes so I can’t wait to read Honeymoon In Paris.

Birthday Gifts (to be continued…):

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I’m pretty excited about all of these books. I can’t wait to read Insurgent and The Evolution of Mara Dyer. I loved the first book in those series, so I’m looking forward to getting stuck into the next book. I’ve wanted to read The 5th Wave for a while. I’ve also heard great things about Cruel Summer and Forbidden. I’m a bit disappointed that I haven’t got the other cover of Daughter Of Smoke and Bone. I liked the previous cover much better. However, I’m really looking forward to starting that series. I also have really enjoyed Emma Donoghue’s previous books, so Astray looks promising!

What are you stacking your shelves with this week? Please feel free to leave a link to your posts and I’ll come and check them out at some point this weekend!