Monday, 18 July 2011

RHCB Blogger's Brunch - 9th July 2011

The lovely ladies from RHCB - Lauren, Lisa, Louise, Rosi, Nathalie, Clare, Emily & Lauren

I was so excited to be invited to the RHCB Blogger's Brunch last week, the RHCB staff are all so enthusiastic about their titles and always surprise us with the number of fantastic books they have coming out.  I had been looking forward to the event for weeks and was very excited about getting to meet up with everyone again, it is so nice to get time to chat with publicists you usually only "speak" to by email and of course I love getting to see the other bloggers too.

Honestly, every time I've been to one of the RHCB brunches I think to myself "there's no way they can top the last one" but every time they manage to do it.  I can't wait to start reading all the books they have coming out in the next few months & I'm sure when you've had a look at the descriptions below you'll agree with me!  No matter what your tastes there will definitely be at least one book you want to add to your wish list!


You Against Me - Jenny Downham
Release Date - 7th July 2011

If someone hurts your sister and you're any kind of man, you seek revenge, right?  If your brother's accused of a terrible crime but says he didn't do it, you defend him, don't you?  When Mikey's sister claims a boy assaulted her, and Ellie's brother is charged with the offence, their two worlds collide.

This is a brave and unflinching novel from the bestselling author of Before I Die.  It's a book about loyalty and the choices that come with it.  But above all it's a book about love.

You Against Me has just been released as a paperback and if you haven't read it yet I would highly recommend it (read my review here).  While we were talking about Jenny Downham we also had a chat about her debut novel Before I Die.  This is being made into a movie and the filming started a couple of weeks ago, the film will be called Now is Good and I'm really looking forward to seeing how this comes across on the big screen.  Jenny Downham is really good at writing dialogues, she actually gets teenagers to act them out as she is writing because she wants to make sure the conversations sound real so it will be interesting to compare the book to the film.

The Devil Walks - Anne Fine
Release Date - 7th July 2011

Raised by a mother everyone thinks has gone mad, Daniel's only link to his past is the intricately built model of the family home - High Gates.  The doll's house is perfect in every detail.

As Daniel is reunited with the last remaining member of his family - his Uncle Severn, who bears an uncanny resemblance to a sinister wooden doll he has found hidden in the house - he begins to suspect that this vicious, haunted puppet of a figure has a chilling influence, bringing cruelty and spite in it's wake.

Now Daniel's very life is at risk as his uncle is determined to get his hands on the figure . . .

This story is set in the past but you never quite find out how long ago.  The author wanted to look at what happens to a child when they have no support system at home and there is nothing like social services to help them.  I'm intrigued by the story but I have a feeling that this one may be a bit too scary for me, even the cover creeps me out!

Bumped - Megan McCafferty
Release Date - 4th August 2011

A virus has swept the world, making everyone over the age of eighteen infertile.  Teenagers are now the most prized members of society.

Sixteen-year-old Melody is gorgeous, athletic and has perfect grades, and has scored an amazing contract with a rich couple.  And she's been matched with one of the most desirable 'bumping' partners in the world - the incredibly hot, genetically flawless Jondoe.

But Melody's luck is about to run out.  She discovers she has a sister - an identical twin, Harmony, who has grown up in a religious community opposed to the idea of 'pregging'.  Melody doesn't have time for this - she can't wait to meet Jondoe and seal the deal.  But when he arrives and mistakes Harmony for Melody, everyone's carefully-laid plans are swept out of control - and Melody and Harmony are about to realise they have so much more than just DNA in common.

Bumped has already been released in the US and is out next month in the UK.  It offers a futuristic, dystopian look at teenage pregnancy and sounds like a really fun read.  It has a lot of slang which can be a bit intimidating but we were told that it is one of those books that once you get started you just can't put it down and I'm very interested to give it a try.

The Adventures of the New Cut Gang - Phillip Pullman
Release Date - 1st September 2011

For the first time in one volume, two action-packed thrillers from one of our best-known authors, about a motley group of urchins forming THE NEW CUT GANG, solving crimes in late Victorian London.

Fake coins are turning up all over Lambeth and the finger of suspicion is pointing at Thunderbolt's dad - could he really be the forger?  The crime-busting New Cut Gang come to the rescue!

And when just two clues - a blob of wax and a Swedish match - are discovered at the scene of a break-in, the children find themselves on the trail of an extremely cunning criminal.

I'm a big fan of Phillip Pullman so I can't wait to read this one.  The two stories were originally published in the early 1990's but I've never read them so it'll be nice to discover something new to me from such a great author.  The story is a rip roaring adventure with an Oliver Twist feel to it - sounds fab doesn't it!

Dearly Departed - Lia Habel
Release Date - 29th September 2011

A pacy, bloodthirsty, hugely entertaining teen zombie novel with an unconditional but tender love story at it's heart.

From the ruins of a cataclysmic ice-age a new society has emerged, based on Victorian customs.  Nora Dearly, a feisty teenage girl and apparent orphan, leaves her exclusive boarding school for the holidays to return home - only to be dragged into the night by the living dead.

Luckily for her, this particular crack unit of zombies are good guys - sent to protect her from the real nasties roaming the countryside and zeroing in on major cities to swell their ranks.  Nora must find a way to defeat the evil undead with help from Bram, a noble, sweet and surprisingly hot zombie boy for whom she starts to fall...

OK so I have to admit that as soon as I heard the phrase zombie romance my first thought was ick!  I may love my vampire romances but zombie and romance are two words that I don't want to see put together in the same sentence lol.  However, the more I heard about the story the more curious I became, I'm sure you already know I'm a fan of anything paranormal but this is also steampunk and as it's set 200 years in the future it also crosses over into dystopian too - all genres I'm really interested in.  All of the RHCB staff were telling us how much they loved the romance so I'm interested to see if Lia Habel can convince me.  We were given an ARC in our goodie bags so I'll let you know how I get on with Dearly Departed as soon as I've read it.

This Dark Endeavour - Kenneth Oppel
Release Date - 6th October 2011

The first book in a pair of dark, Gothic thrillers that tell the story of young Victor Frankenstein's life - everything before he became the creator of THAT monster.

Victor and Konrad Frankenstein are twins, born just two minutes apart but with very different personalities.  Along with their beautiful cousin Elizabeth, they lead a charmed life at their parent's chateau.  But when Konrad falls dangerously ill, everything changes.

Victor's quest to find a cure leads him into the Dark Library, a secret room full of ancient, forbidden knowledge.  On the spine-chilling mission that follows, he is forced to confront strange foes, alchemical forces and the most difficult torment of all - the pain of unrequited love.

I loved Kenneth Oppel's novel Half Brother (read my review here) so as soon as I heard about his new novel This Dark Endeavour I knew it's one I have to read.  Then when I found out that the story is a prequel to Frankenstein and I was completely sold, I love reading different authors takes on well known stories and I think it will be incredibly interesting to read about how Victor Frankenstein could have ended up as a crazy scientist.  We were told that this is a dark thriller and Gothic horror story with an erotic love triangle.  If you follow my blog you'll probably know I don't read a lot of horror as I have a fairly low fear threshold, I have a feeling that this may scare the pants off of me but I still can't wait to give it a try.  Other exciting news is that This Dark Endeavor is going to be made into a film, it will be directed by Matt Reeves who also directed Cloverfield and Let Me In.

Runelight - Joanne Harris
Release Date - 3rd November 2011

The humor, spark and magic of Discworld's Tiffany Aching meets the action-packed adventure of Percy Jackson in a page-turning fantasy blockbuster, from the bestselling writer of Chocolat and The Lollipop Shoes.

The squabbling Norse gods and goddesses of Runemarks are back!  And there's a feisty new heroine on the scene: Maggie, a girl the same age as Maddie but brought up a world apart - literally, in World's End, the focus of the Order in which Maddy was raised.  Now the Order is destroyed, Chaos is filling the vacuum left behind... and is breaching the everyday world.

Runelight is the sequel to Runemarks and this is an epic fantasy series full of Norse gods and plenty of adventure.  I have to admit that I've not read the first book but this sounds just like the kind of thing I'll love so I was very excited that we were given a copy of Runemarks in our goodie bags!  I know nothing about Norse mythology but the author has done a lot of research and is even learning Old Norse so I can't wait to find out more.

The Haunting of Charity Delafield - Ian Beck
Release Date - 3rd November 2011

Flame-haired Charity Delafield has grown up in a vast, isolated house - most of which she is forbidden to explore - with her fiercely strict father.  With only her kindly nurse, Rose, and her cat Mr Tompkins for company, she knows very little of the outside world - or of her own family's shadowy past.  What she does know is that she is NEVER to go outside unsupervised.  And she is NEVER to over-excite herself, because of the mysterious 'condition' that she has been told she suffers from.

But Charity has a secret.  All her life, she has had the same strange dream - a dream of a dark corridor, hidden somewhere in the house.  Then, one day, Charity stumbles across the corridor.  It leads to a door . . . and suddenly she realises that things are not quite what they seem.

Ian Beck is best known as an illustrator, he was the artist who created the cover for Elton John's Yellow Brick Road album and has worked on numerous children's books.  We haven't seen the cover yet but it was drawn by the author and actually became the inspiration for the story so I'm sure it will be stunning!  The Haunting of Charity Delafield is a creepy, atmospheric, dark and magical fairytale aimed at ages 9 and up and it's one I'm really looking forward to reading.

Inheritance - Christopher Paolini
Release Date - 8th November 2011

The final stunning book in the Inheritance cycle featuring Eragon and his dragon Saphira.

Not so very long ago, Eragon - Shadeslayer, Dragon Rider - was nothing more than a poor farm boy, and his dragon, Saphira, only a blue stone in the forest.  Now, the fate of an entire civilisation rests on their shoulders.

Long months of training and battle have brought victories and hope, but they have also brought heartbreaking loss.  And still the real battle lies ahead: they must confront Galbatorix.  When they do, they will have to be strong enough to defeat him.  And if they cannot, no one can.  There will be no second chances.

I'm very excited to finally get to read the last installment in the Inheritance Cycle series, I've been a fan of these books since the first book Eragon was released so am looking forward to seeing how the series ends.  I'm planning on doing a re-read of the first 3 books over the next couple of months ready for the release of Inheritance so keep an eye out for reviews coming soon.  We were shown this video of Christopher Paolini taking about the final book so I thought I'd include it here so you can watch it too:

Wolf Spring Chronicles: Unleashed - Nancy Holder & Debbie Vigue
Release Date - 1st December 2011

When Katelyn starts at her new school, the only person she knows is the handsome and intriguing Trick Sokolov, an acquaintance of her grandfather.  She's surprised when the popular Cordelia Fenner invites her home and when she meets Cordelia's hot brother, she begins to think her new life might be OK after all.

But as she spends time with the family, every bone in Katelyn's body tells her that the Fenners are mad, bad and dangerous to know - but how can she give up her only friend, and how can she ignore the way Justin sets her blood on fire with a single look?

Katelyn finds herself caught between three major werewolf clans who have been at war with each other for centuries - a war, it seems, that Katelyn is destined to end.

Unleashed is a paranormal romance but also a re-telling of Shakespeare's King Lear.  I have to admit that I've never read the original play so although I'm looking forward to reading this one I won't be able to compare the two stories.  This is the first in a series and we were warned that it has a cliffhanger ending but there is more to come.  I have several books by Nancy Holder and Debbie Vigue on my to read pile so I'm going to have to start trying to read them.

Mortal Kiss: Fool's Silver - Alice Moss
Release Date - 5th January 2011

This second sensational story in the MORTAL KISS sequence - first serialised on international hit teen website Stardoll - is now a novel that is set to take the world by storm!

Could you chose between the ones you love . . . ?

A gorgeous boyfriend and a long summer in Winter Mill to look forward to - things are too good for Faye McCarron.  Then her friend Lucas disappears without a trace.  But nobody seems to care - until two strangers arrive in town . . .

Faye and Finn leave Winter Mill to try and find Lucas.  But with Finn struggling against his new role as leader of the wolf pack, and unknown evil forces working against them, will they save their friend before it's too late?

I really like the look of this series, I actually bought the first book a few months ago but still haven't read it (I really need to do something about my ridiculous to read pile!).  Looks like I'm going to have to pick it up soon though as I already want to read the sequel.

Kiss, Date, Love, Hate - Luisa Plaja
Release Date - 2nd February 2012

A cool computer programme that can change your life, looks and who falls in love with you?  Let the games begin... Lex Murphy's group of friends have all dated, hated, ignored and lusted after each other for the last few years.  If only there was a way of matching people perfectly to avoid all the unrequited love, dumping and drama!

Then Lex's friend George is given a mysterious Sims-like game by his software-testing dad which involves building character profiles in the categories of Life, Looks and Love.  Lex and George populate the game with avatars for their mates, making a few 'wishful thinking' adjustments to the settings - and find that the next day these tinkerings have come true!  But how can this new calm, loved-up atmosphere continue...?

I still haven't read anything by Luisa Plaja despite having a couple of her books in my to read pile (I did already say that my to read pile is crazy!).  I've heard a lot of good things about her writing though and this sounds like a really fun read.

Desert Angel - Charlie Price
Release Date - 2nd February 2012

A terrifying cat and mouse game with a tough yet vulnerable character.

He is waiting... He is watching... He will hunt her down.

Angel is on the run.  Her mother is dead, her body buried in a shallow grave by her latest boyfriend, Scotty, an ruthless, illegal hunter who is prone to violence and who now wants Angel dead before she can talk to the police.

Angel has lived through more than a young girl should have but she's determined to stay alive.

But in the scorching heat of the open desert, where can she hide?

Charlie Price's last novel, Hear the Dead Cry, may have been a paranormal but Desert Angel is full of gritty realism.  When Angel finds her mother's body she soon finds that the killer is after her too, in a race for her life across the desert can Angel escape from the killer?  This sounds like such a fab read, I really can't wait to get my hands on a copy!

The Wood Queen - Karen Mahoney
Release Date - 2nd February 2012

The fey war continues in this bewitching sequel to Karen Mahoney's The Iron Witch.

Donna Underwood is in deep trouble.  An ancient alchemical order is holding her accountable for destroying the last precious drops of the elixir of life.

Never mind the fact that Donna was acting to free her friend, Navin, from the dangerous clutches of the Wood Queen at the time.  But what the alchemists have in store is nothing compared to the wrath of the fey.  The Wood Queen has been tricked and Donna must pay.

Get ready for all hell - literally - to break loose...

I absolutely loved The Iron Witch when I read it earlier this year (read my review here) so I can't wait to find out what happens next.  It certainly sounds like Donna is going to be up to her eyes in trouble!  There is no cover image available yet but I'll be sure to post it as soon as I can, the cover is going to be along the same lines as the first book though which is great because The Iron Witch has a beautiful cover.  We have also been told we can expect a very steamy love scene in this installment, what I want to know is who is in it - Donna and Xan or Donna and Nav?

Now Is The Time For Running - Michael Williams
Release Date - 2nd February 2012

On the dusty fields of Zimbabwe, Deo finds meaning in football.  He's a Man United fan with a home-made ball and one day he's going to make it big.  Innocent, his older brother, isn't like the other boys; he's slow sometimes, but no one dares say so - not with Deo listening.

When the soldiers come with their trail of death and destruction, the boys have no choice but to flee for their lives.

On the run and in hiding, the boys weave their way through the border to South Africa, arriving with their meagre possessions and a handful of dreams.

Again, I'm sorry but I don't have a cover image to share with you for this one.  Michael Williams is a South African author and this story is based on true events when the army was systematically removing anyone who was opposed to the government.  We were told that a suitable name for this book would be "Now is the Time for Kleenex" as the book is one that will really have an effect you, especially if you're from Africa.  A refugee story with 2 young boys looking for somewhere to belong this reminded me of In the Sea there are Crocodiles by Fabio Geda and I definitely want to read it.

The Flappers: Vixen - Jillian Larkin
Release Date - 1st March 2012

The first in a sparkling new trilogy full of romance, dancing and secrecy.  Seventeen-year-old Gloria wants the glamorous flapper lifestyle.  Now that she's engaged to the heir of one of Chicago's most powerful families, Gloria's party days are over before they've even begun . . . or are they?

Clara, Gloria's goody-two-shoes cousin, has arrived to make sure the high-society wedding comes off without a hitch - but Clara isn't as lily-white as she appears . . .

Lorraine, Gloria's social-climbing best friend, is tired of living in Gloria's shadow.  When Lorraine's envy spills over into desperate spite, no one is safe.  And someone's going to be very sorry . . .

I think the only book I've ever read set in the 1920's must be The Great Gatsby (if I'm remembering correctly - it's a long time since I studied it at school!) so I love the sound of this one.  It's such a glamorous era and one I'm really excited to learn more about.  Vixen has already been released in the US but unfortunately we have to wait until next year for it to come out in the UK, I can't wait!

Sea Hearts - Margo Lanagan
Release Date - 5th April 2012

A mesmerizing selkie tale from one of the most exciting voices in modern literature.

On remote Rollrock Island, men go to sea to make their livings - and to catch their wives.

The witch Misskaella knows the way of drawing a girl from the heart of a seal, of luring the beauty out of the beast.  And, for a price, any man might buy himself a sea-wife.  He may have and hold and keep her.  And he will tell himself that he is her master.  But from his first look into those wide, questioning, liquid eyes, he will be just as transformed as she is.  He will be equally ensnared.  And the witch will have her true payment.

Margo Lanagan weaves an extraordinary tale of desire, despair and transformation.  With devastatingly beautiful prose, she reveals characters capable of unspeakable cruelty, but also unspoken love.

I'm loving the idea of a story based on folk legends about selkies, I know very little about selkie mythology having only come across them in 1 other novel (adult urban fantasy Tempest Rising by Nicole Peeler) so am really looking forward to finding out more.  I think this will be a really interesting read and am looking forward to getting hold of a copy.

Struck - Jennifer Bosworth
Release Date - 5th July 2012

Three days are left until the final storm that will destroy the world.  Mia Price must make her choice before it's too late.

LA has been devastated by a massive earthquake and the city is full of chaos and shattered lives.  Mia Price has a connection to the storm that caused the earthquake but doesn't know why - who should she turn to for answers?

The religious FOLLOWERS prophesise the end of the world and claim to have the answers that Mia is seeking.  The mysterious and beautiful Jeremy warns her away from them but he's hiding a more sinister truth.

In the end, Mia is to discover that she is part of a power much larger than she could ever have imagined.  When the final disaster strikes, she must unleash the full horror of her strength to save them all.

Struck is a debut novel by Jennifer Bosworth, it's dystopian novel set in LA and full of earthquakes and doomsday cults which seems very relevant considering fairly recent events in Japan and America!  The story is very visual and fast paced and full of plenty of sub plots that will keep us gripped to the pages.  I've been really enjoying the dystopian genre recently and this one has just gone to the top of my wish list!  The only problem is I've got to wait about a year to get my hands on a copy, I have a feeling this will be a big hit next summer though.


So what do you think of all the new titles coming soon?  I'd love to know which ones you're most looking forward to reading!  I've added so many new books to my wish list that it's getting a little bit scary lol.  After we had spoken about all the new books coming we were given some very exciting goodie bags and allowed to pick from a selection of books that had been piled around the room, everyone at RHCB should know better than to let us loose on books by now - we were like a hoard of locusts and there weren't many left by the time we'd finished!  I'd like to say a massive thanks to all of the staff for being so generous to us all.  Here is a picture of the books I picked up:

The event didn't end there though, we still had a couple of very special guests to meet - authors Lindsey Barraclough, author of Long Lankin and Andy Mulligan, author of Trash.  I really enjoyed both of these books (read my review of Long Lankin here and of Trash here) so it was great to meet both of the authors and they were very happy to sign our books for us.

Here is the trailer for Lindsey Barraclough's Long Lankin:

And some of the pictures I took of Lindsey with some of the bloggers:

Here is the trailer for Trash by Andy Mulligan:

And some pictures I took with Andy and some of the bloggers:

There was just enough time for some group photos before it was time to leave, here is one of all the bloggers with Lindsey & Andy (if you click on the picture you should be able to see a larger version):

And here are all the lovely ladies from RHCB:

Thanks so much for everyone at RHCB for a fantastic morning, it was lovely to see you again (and to meet some new faces!).  I can't wait to get started on the books I came home with :o)

In the afternoon quite a few of us went to a local pub for lunch and book chatter, it's always so much fun hanging around with other bloggers.  I've made some great new friends since I started blogging and we always have a blast together.  I'm already looking forward to seeing everyone again soon!

Who Was There:
Lauren, Clare, Rosi, Lisa, Louise, Lauren, Emily & Nathalie - RHCB
Andy Mulligan - Website
Lindsey Barraclough - Lindsey's page on Goodreads
Carly - Writing From The Tub - Event Report


  1. I WANT ALL THE BOOKS. Ahem. I'm dying to get that cover of Dearly Departed, the US one bores me. The Devil Walks looks amazing, definitely a 5 star cover. I've read Bumped and I loved it! This Dark Endeavor looks really intriguing too! *mass wishlist add*
    I blame you entirely. XD

    ComaCalm's Corner

  2. Looks like you all had a great time. So many good titles. Can't wait to hear al about them x

  3. I'm loving all these round up posts about the RHCB event and it sounds like everyone had a fab time.

    Wonders when I'll get to read about the next one :D



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