Review: Tunnels of Blood (The Saga of Darren Shan, #3)

Tunnels of Blood (The Saga of Darren Shan, #3)Tunnels of Blood by Darren Shan

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Mr Crepsley and Darren are back again in more adventures as a vampire and his assistant. This time, Mr C is contacted by an old friend, who also happens to be a vampire general. Taking Darren and Evra with him, Mr C leaves the Cirque Du Freak on a mission.

As with the other two books, the writing in this one is simplistic and normally I would say that it was too childlike for me to be able to read it, however, with this series it works. It makes the books a quick and easy read for all ages.
I am really enjoying the series so far, but this book is my least favourite up to now.

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Review: The Vampire’s Assistant – Darren Shan #2

The Vampire's Assistant (The Saga of Darren Shan, #2)The Vampire’s Assistant by Darren Shan

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Darren made the difficult decision to become a half-vampire to save his best mate Steve Leopard’s life. Now, he must leave his friends and family behind as he travels cross-country with the vampire Mr Crepsley and the Cirque du Freak. The Vampire’s Assistant is not for the squeamish or faint-hearted. How long can Darren go before he must drink human blood? How safe are Darren’s new-found friends? Why don’t the mysterious, blue-hooded dwarves speak or cry out in pain? And does their master Mr Des Tiny really feed on little children? No one is safe in this gruesome, macabre tale–more a who’s-going-to-do-what than a who-dunnit.

This is the second book in The Saga of Darren Shan (A Living Nightmare is the first, otherwise known as Cirque Du Freak). I bought the first nine books in this series from a car boot sale back in March of this year (2017), partly on a whim. I had never read anything by Shan before but had heard about this series. Even with little knowledge of the series, at £6.75 for nine books I couldn’t pass them up (I have a book buying problem haha). Anyway, when I loved the first book I decided my money was well spent and made a start on the second – The Vampire’s Assistant.

I’m really glad I decided to continue with the story because Shan does not disappoint. In the previous book, Darren Shan had agreed to become a half vampire and assistant to Crepsley (a fully fledged bonafide vampire) in order to save his best friends life. Moving into the current book, and we see Darren start his journey to a vampiric life. The pair flit around quite a bit at the beginning of the book but eventually end up back where it all started – at the Cirque Du Freak. Darren begins to make friends but things, unfortunately, aren’t plain sailing from there.

As with the first book, the writing and language used is quite simple. Not simple in a bad, OMG I can’t read this kind of way but in a way that shows that the author was clearly writing for the younger audience (not that I care that I am 33 and reading books clearly not aimed at me haha). The author spends some time building a scene but doesn’t go overboard with what I sometimes think are over the top descriptions e.g. He will describe a setting, but won’t linger too much on any particular thing – how bright and green the trees are, for example. He will say they are bright, and green but won’t stoop to using too many words. I think is perfect for the younger (and older) reader.

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Review: Cirque Du Freak – Darren Shan #1

Cirque Du Freak (The Saga of Darren Shan, #1)Cirque Du Freak by Darren Shan

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I enjoyed this book. Told from the perspective of a young boy (Shan) the story is quite simplistic in its language as you would expect from a child of the main characters age, but it breaches barriers between the child and adult worlds.
Darren and his friend go to see a freak show. Freak shows are banned but there is one still travelling around, behind the scenes, dingy and secretive events held for only certain people.
We follow Darren and Steve into this freak show and what happens next.

To a younger person, I could definitely see this book bordering on horror, as a grown up not so much. That being said, it was still a good read. And a good job too as I have the next 8 books in the series waiting on my book shelf courtesy of a car boot sale a while ago.

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Review: Sons of Anarchy Vol. 4

Sons of Anarchy Vol. 4Sons of Anarchy Vol. 4 by Ed Brisson

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I was late to the Sons of Anarchy party. I binge watched all seasons of the TV show last year and I left it in tears because it had ended.

Having recently found a ‘thing’ for graphic novels, I got overexcited when I found this book available at my local library. Their GN collection is pretty dire tbh so this was a really good find.

Then, when I got home, my heart sank. Part of me knew it was my own fault but I didn’t read anything about it. Not the blurb or any details, I just got really really excited. However, it was volume 4 and I hadn’t read the first 3 so panic set in. Would I know what was going on? How would I manage to read the story if I had no idea what had happened before? Yadda yadda blah blah

Anyway, back to the book… So I really enjoyed it. It is a compilation of issues. Each issue is a stand alone story featuring a different member of the SOA. The tagline for the book should really be something along the lines of “You’ve seen them together, now see them alone” – however, they aren’t alone in the sense that they are the only member featured in that story but more because it focuses on one character. In this one, we have Jax, Juice, Happy and Bobby.

If you’re a fan, I’d definitely recommend it but if not then it probably won’t make much sense to you.

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Review: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Harry Potter, #3)Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Harry Potter, along with his best friends, Ron and Hermione, is about to start his third year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Harry can’t wait to get back to school after the summer holidays. (Who wouldn’t if they lived with the horrible Dursleys?) But when Harry gets to Hogwarts, the atmosphere is tense. There’s an escaped mass murderer on the loose, and the sinister prison guards of Azkaban have been called in to guard the school…

This is a re-read for me. In fact, I have lost count of the number of times I have read the Harry Potter series of books (and watched the films) but I still keep coming back to them. To me, this shows exactly what kind of world J.K.Rowling has created. I know many people that re-read these books on a regular basis. It really does draw you in, you love (and hate) the characters and you find yourself rooting for them in all their many adventures.

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban is the first in the series that doesn’t follow suit. Do we still get adventure? Yes, but of a different kind to what readers of the first two books only may be used to.
In Azkaban, a crucial new character is properly introduced – along with all the usual ones that we love.

Re-reading this, this time round, I actually do love this book. We have so many firsts happening in this story that I found it impossible to NOT love it (Order of the Phoenix is still my favourite).

I can not wait to start my re-read of book four. Although I am trying to clear out some of my TBR pile… **but Harry Potter wins every time**