Mini Reviews #1: Short Reads

Monday, 13 July 2015

The Jewel by Amy Ewing is one of my favourite reads this year, and I'm so excited for the sequel, so I was thrilled to see this novella released in the run up. The House of the Stone gives us an insight into Raven's time as a surrogate in The House of the Stone. I was a fan of Raven in the first book so it was great to have her perspective and to find out more about the brutality that we knew she was facing at the hands of the countess who bought her at auction. I love how much of a fighter Raven is and that she's not willing to make things easy for the countess. My only complaint is that it is so short (I know, I know, it's a novella, but I want more!).  

Marly's Ghost by David Levithan is a reimagining of A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens but it is set on Valentine's Day rather than Christmas Day. Ben's girlfriend Marly dies and he has become bitter and no longer believes in the goodness of love. Marly's ghost turns up and brings three other spirits with her for Ben to experience Valentines past, present and future. We learn from the author's notes that he translated the original work section by section. I think that's an intriguing method and it does mostly work. I didn't like that Ben's friends were really pushing for him to go to a party and get back to normal only a few months after his girlfriend died. There is diversity provided in the form of gay couple Tiny and Tim who I did like. (Tiny Tim, get it?) I loved the illustrations and only wish that there were more of them as they were lovely. The story is heartwarming and provides a good message that you don't have to forget those you have loved but you have to remember to live your life.

Through the Woods by Emily Carroll is the first graphic novel that I have read and I really wasn't disappointed. I wasn't really sure what to expect as I don't have much knowledge of the genre but the stories were really great. Each one has just the right amount of creepiness to keep your mind wandering at night! The illustrations are absolutely beautiful and I can't praise them enough. The stories themselves are quite simplistic but, coupled with the breathtaking artwork, they work so well and I loved each one. I can't wait to see what other gems I can find in this genre!

The Dark by Lemony Snicket is a book that I picked up on a whim whilst browsing the graphic novel shelves in the library. I'm a huge fan of Lemony Snicket so I knew straight away that I had to read it. It's for children, so I'm not the intended audience, but it was very cute. I didn't have an emotional connection with it but that probably would have been different if I had a fear of the dark when I was young. I would say that this is a great choice of book if you have a child who is afraid of the dark as it might help show them that there's nothing to be scared of. 
"You might be afraid of the dark, but the dark is not afraid of you. That’s why the dark is always close by."

Have you read any of these books? Let me know what you thought of them!


  1. I've wanted to check out Through the Woods for a while! It sounds incredibly great. Thanks for the short reviews!
    Krystianna @ Downright Dystopian

    1. I really enjoyed it more than I thought I would! :)

  2. I really like the sound of Marly's Ghost! I'm definitely looking into that one!

    1. I liked it! It's a quick read but enjoyable. I hope you enjoy it! :)