Title: The Water Cure

Author: Sophie Mackintosh

Pages: 288 Pages

Publisher: Penguin

The Blurb

Grace, Lia and Sky live in an abandoned hotel, on a sun-bleached island, beside a poisoned sea. Their parents raised them there to keep them safe, to make them good. The world beyond the water is contaminated and men are the contamination. But one day three strangers wash ashore – men who stare at the sisters hungrily, helplessly. Men who bring trouble.

The Blurb

Ok. So I am not a huge fan of dystopian fiction. It really isn’t my go to genre. It is for this reason alone that I didn’t necessarily enjoy The Water Cure. It was well written and so this isn’t to disparage Sophie Mackintosh’s talent as a story teller because for the right audience this book will be brilliant. I think I need to stay away from dystopian fiction.

The Water Cure by Sophie Mackintosh is available now.

For more information regarding Sophie Mackintosh (@fairfairisles) please visit www.sophiemackintosh.co.uk.

For more information regarding Penguin Books (@PenguinUKBooks) please visit www.penguin.co.uk.


Title: The Handmaid’s Tale

Author: Margaret Atwood

Pages: 325 Pages

Publisher: Vintage

The Blurb

‘I believe in the resistance as I believe there can be no light without shadow; or rather, no shadow unless there is also light.’

Offred is a Handmaid in The Republic of Gilead, a religious totalitarian state in what was formerly known as the United States. She is placed in the household of The Commander, Fred Waterford – her assigned name, Offred, means ‘of Fred’. She has only one function: to breed. If Offred refuses to enter into sexual servitude to repopulate a devastated world, she will be hanged. Yet even a repressive state cannot eradicate hope and desire. As she recalls her pre-revolution life in flashbacks, Offred must navigate through the terrifying landscape of torture and persecution in the present day, and between two men upon which her future hangs.

Masterfully conceived and executed, this haunting vision of the future places Margaret Atwood at the forefront of dystopian fiction.


The Review

I was always scared to read The Handmaid’s Tale. It is a much loved and revered book so it had that going for it but it is also part of the dystopian fiction genre which is not my favourite if truth be told. I didn’t want to alienate or anger my bookish friends who love this book if I actually hated it.

However, with the current political climate I felt that it was time to get over my fear and from what I knew about the story of The Handmaid’s Tale I figured that it was time to read it.

I loved it.

It was a novel that made me angry and made me engage with my feminist ideals and sensibilities. It also made me remember once again just how powerful the written word can be.

And yes, I have pre-ordered the sequel because dammit, I need to read more.

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margret Atwood is available now.

For more information regarding Margaret Atwood (@MargaretAtwood) please visit www.margaetatwood.ca.

For more information regarding Vintage (@Vintagebooks) please visit po.st/VintageHomepage.

Title: Ink

Author: Alice Broadway

Pages: 390 Pages

Publisher: Scholastic UK

The Blurb

Every action, every deed, every significant moment is tattooed on your skin forever. When Leora’s father dies, she is determined to see her father remembered forever. She knows he deserves to have all his tattoos removed and made into a Skin Book to stand as a record of his good life. But when she discovers that his ink has been edited and his book is incomplete, she wonders whether she ever knew him at all.


The Review

As far as unique stories go, Ink by Alice Broadway has won the most unique book of the year for me. I absolutely loved it. I couldn’t put it down and straight away bought five copies for the school book club I run. I knew, within the first few chapters that the story of Leora and her father’s death would be one to capture their imagination.

What I genuinely loved about Ink was how you could tell your story and people could know thing about you by looking at your skin. I loved how this seemed both wonderful and terrifying at the same time. Ink’s weird dystopia seemed so normal and I think that is where Alice Broadway’s clever writing comes in to play.

Ink has a glorious ending that makes you (well, made me) instantly buy the sequel – Spark.

Honestly, if you like your fiction to be fresh, engaging and altogether fantastic then Ink is the novel for you.

Ink by Alice Broadway is available now.

For more information regarding Alice Broadway (@alicecrumbs) please visit www.alice-broadway.com.

For more information regarding Scholastic (@scholasticuk) please visit www.scholastic.co.uk.

The Midnight DanceTitle: The Midnight Dance

Author: Nikki Katz

Pages: 313 Pages

Publisher: Swoon Reads

The Blurb

“A dark adventure, stunningly written!” —Jay Asher, #1 New York Times-bestselling author of Thirteen Reasons Why

Set against the fascinating and moody backdrop of a mysterious boarding school, this intricately crafted novel is filled with magical realism, gothic settings, and the perfect hint of romance.

Seventeen-year-old Penny is a lead dancer at the Grande Teatro, a finishing school where she and eleven other young women are training to become the finest ballerinas in Italy. Tucked deep in the woods, the school is overseen by the mysterious and handsome young Master, who keeps the girls ensconced in the estate – and in the only life Penny has ever known.

But when flashes of memories – memories of a life very different from the one she thinks she’s been leading – start to appear, Penny begins to question the Grande Teatro and the motivations of Master. With a kind and attractive kitchen boy, Cricket, at her side, Penny vows to escape the confines of her school and the strict rules that dictate every step she takes. But at every turn, Master finds a way to stop her, and Penny must uncover the secrets of her past before it’s too late.

Debut author Nikki Katz delivers a unique and haunting twist on a classic fairy tale with The Midnight Dance, chosen by readers like you for Macmillan’s young adult imprint Swoon Reads.

The Review

The Midnight Dance is a quirky thriller set in a school for orphaned ballerinas. Intrigued? Well you should be. Nikki Katz has created a dystopian fiction set in the 19th century that focuses on the mind control over young ladies who are all training to be prima ballerinas.

Katz’s novel is probably best described as part dystopian young adult fiction and part Frankenstein with a dollop of Groundhog Day thrown in for good measure. It is a really compelling read about triumphing over adversity along with a closer look at the perils of medicine and scientific experimentation.

I was initially drawn to the beautiful book cover. The Midnight Dance really would catch your eye on the shelf and admittedly I did find it difficult to get into but once the first few chapters have been read and you get into the swing of things it really does become a fast and furious thriller.

The Midnight Dance by Nikki Katz is available now.

For more information regarding Nikki Katz (@katzni) please visit www.nikkikatz.com.

For more information regarding Swoon Reads (@SwoonReads) please visit www.swoonreads.com.

3 Stars

EverlessTitle: Everless

Author: Sara Holland

Pages: 368 Pages

Publisher: Hachette Children’s Books

The Blurb

Time is a prison. She is the key. Packed with danger, temptation and desire – a perfect read for fans of The Red Queen.

In the land of Sempera, the rich control everything – even time. Ever since the age of alchemy and sorcery, hours, days and years have been extracted from blood and bound to iron coins. The rich live for centuries; the poor bleed themselves dry.

Jules and her father are behind on their rent and low on hours. To stop him from draining himself to clear their debts, Jules takes a job at Everless, the grand estate of the cruel Gerling family.

There, Jules encounters danger and temptation in the guise of the Gerling heir, Roan, who is soon to be married. But the web of secrets at Everless stretches beyond her desire, and the truths Jules must uncover will change her life for ever … and possibly the future of time itself.

‘Sara Holland is a fierce storyteller. An intoxicating blend of blood, secrets, and haunting mythology, Everless gives new and terrifying meaning to the phrase running out of time.’ Stephanie Garber, New York Times and Sunday Times bestselling author of Caraval

The Review

Oh my wowza!

In my opinion, young adult fiction just keeps getting better and better. Everless by Sarah Holland is no exception to this rule. It is bloody brilliant.

Set in a world where blood means survival, our young heroine, Jules, has to make some hard decisions to ensure the survival of herself and her beloved father. However, the decisions that she makes can be costly but without choosing to give herself up to work for the Gerling family – a family whom she and her father fled when she was younger – Jules knows that she and her father will die.

Everless blew me away. With dystopian fiction becoming ever more present due to its current ‘on trend’ status you would think it would be increasingly difficult to make something new, original and damn right gripping but Sara Holland has managed to do so with her impressive novel. Furthermore, the book promises more stories from the mysterious yet dismal society in the land of Sempera.

I will warn you, if you are anything like me then Everless will make you antisocial. Be prepared to cut yourself off from the outside world because you will get sucked into this one.

Everless by Sarah Holland is available now.

For more information regarding Sara Holland (@Sara_Holland) please visit www.sarahollandwrites.com.

For more information regarding Hachette Children’s Books (@HachetteKids) please visit www.hachetteechildrens.co.uk.

5 Stars