29 Nov 2012


Everyone says that Caro is bad ...but Jamie can't help himself. He thinks of her night and day and can't believe that she wants to be his girlfriend. Gorgeous, impulsive and unconventional, she is totally different to all the other girls he knows. His sister, Martha, hates her. Jamie doesn't know why, but there's no way he's going to take any notice of her warnings to stay away from Caro. But as Jamie falls deeper and deeper under her spell, he realises there is more to Caro - much more. There are the times when she disappears and doesn't get in touch, the small scars on her wrists, her talk about revolutions and taking action, not to mention the rumours he hears about the other men in her life. And then always in the background there is Rob, Jamie's older brother, back from Afghanistan and traumatised after having his leg smashed to bits there. Jamie wants to help him, but Rob seems to be living in a world of his own and is increasingly difficult to reach. With Caro, the summer should have been perfect ...but that isn't how things work out in real life, and Jamie is going to find out the hard way.

I love Celia Rees. She is one of the big reasons why I love literature so much. She reached me as a child and kept my attention, which was increasingly hard to do. I remember going to the bookshop desperate to find a new title of hers that I hadn't read. Having said that I was reluctant to read This is Not Forgiveness. I was worried that the magic of her writing, that I'd loved so much as a child, might not be there to the older, more cynical, me. Boy was I wrong. Her writing is a strong as ever. She writes with an intensity, with short sentences that pack a punch to your gut and leave you reeling.

This is Not Forgiveness follow 3 main characters; Jamie, Caro and Rob, each narrating in alternating chapters. Jamie is the central narrator: teen boy who meets and falls head over heels for Caro, a dangerous enigma of a girl who only ever seems to have eyes for older men. And finally Rob, Jamie's older brother, now discharged from the Army through injury who has more to do with Caro than he should.

Essentially the story is about damage. Damage that the course of a life brings to our minds and bodies, and how the emotional and psychological effects of that damage can change our abilities to handle the people we come in to contact with. Both Caro and Rob are emotionally damaged and in their ways they inflict that upon Jamie.

22 Nov 2012



Daire Santos has already saved her grandmother's life -- and her soul. But at a cost: the Richter family has been let loose in the Lowerworld. Daire and her boyfriend Dace Richter must work together to find them before chaos ensues and the balance between good and evil is destroyed. As their relationship deepens, Dace's evil brother Cade grows stronger than ever, building his power and forcing Daire and Dace to confront the horrifying prophecy that has brought them all together. It will leave Daire no choice but to claim her true destiny as Seeker, but only by making an unthinkable sacrifice.

When I read Fated, the first book in the series, I was weary, knowing that I didn't like Noel's previous series, but when I found a copy of Echo in my pigeon hole at work I was actually very excited.

Echo moves the story towards the destruction of Cade, Dace's evil twin brother. Both Daire and Dace must find a way to work together, and even apart, in order to restore the Middle and Lowerworlds back from the death and decay that Cade has wreaked. 

The first book has a steady pace, carefully setting up the story, giving you back story and taking your hand through Daire's new life. Echo really picks up the pace. Now you know who Daire is, what she is capable of and what sort of adversity she's facing we can start to get down to the nitty-gritty. It runs at full speed, pulling you along just as quickly but still able to fill you in on the little things from the last book you might have forgotten.

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