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The TBR Tag

So, I was tagged by Megs over at Between The Pages to do the TBR Tag! Go check out her blog! Thank you Megs for tagging me, I’m so excited to do it!

How do you keep track of your TBR pile?

I’m a little disorganised with how I keep up with my TBR pile. Some of them are on my Goodreads account, but then sometimes I’ll see a book on Instagram or Twitter that looks interesting so I’ll just screenshot it so I don’t forget about it. I should probably just put them all into Goodreads but I’m lazy.

Is your TBR mostly print or e-book?

Print. I’ve read less than 5 e-books. I like having and keeping the physical book!

How do you determine which book from your TBR to read next?

I’m not sure, I just look through it and pick whatever one I’m feeling at that moment.

A book that has been on your TBR the longest?

The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne. It’s been on there sooo long, but I haven’t gotten rid of it in my recent Down The TBR Hole posts because I do really want to get around to it at some point.

A book that you recently added to your TBR?

Warcross by Marie Lu.

A book on your TBR strictly because it has a beautiful cover.

A Reign of The Fallen by Sarah Glenn Marsh.

A book on your TBR that you never plan on actually reading.

I don’t know! I hope to eventually read all of the books on my TBR, so I don’t think that I can’t answer this question!

An unpublished book on your TBR that you are excited for.

Genesis by Brendan Reichs!! I LOVED Nemesis, the first book in the series, so much! I’m so excited for the release of Genesis next year. I need to know what happens!

A book on your TBR that basically everyone has read but you.

Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake. I really want to read this, I’ve heard so many good things about it.

A book on your TBR that everyone recommends to you.

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard. I have this book on my shelf ready to be read, it’s just finding the time to read it!

A book on your TBR that you are dying to read.

There’s waaaay too many to choose just one!

The number of books on your Goodreads TBR.

53, at the moment. This has been going up and down though!

Thanks again to Megs for that tag! I tag absolutely anyone that wants to do the tag!

-Books&Belle xx

 

 

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Uncategorized

A Collab With Hannah: Disney Q&A

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So, Hannah and I decided to collaborate for a blog post, and we both discovered we had a mutual love for Disney, so we decided the subject would be that! I asked her ten Disney themed questions that she has answered on my blog, and she asked me ten different Disney themed questions over on her blog!

1. Who is your favourite Disney character?

Gosh there is just so many characters to choose from, how can I even choose. I think if it’s Princess then would of course be Belle. But if it from other Disney films then I’d have to say Robin Hood, we all have to admit it, love the voice and just such a well done and charming character.

2. If you could change the ending of one Disney story, which would it be, and how would you end it?

Not so much as changing the ending but properly I’d like an extension to either The Rescuers or Basil The Great Mouse Detective. I just feel Disney let these films down because they could have been expanded so much and they honestly weren’t, they could have been a whole franchise but weren’t which makes me sad.

3. Do you have any unpopular opinions about anything to do with Disney?

I didn’t like Moana. I love the songs but the story itself I just think that it wasn’t that good *hides from all Moana fans*. But I suppose I also don’t like the whole animations which have been updated, I just think that the old pencil style animation made the film feel more real than computer animated. Oh and I don’t agree with people saying Mulan is a Disney Princess, she’s not she didn’t marry a prince and I like her being a kick ass warrior without Princess title.

4. Name one Disney film that you think doesn’t get the recognition that it deserves.

Dinosaur, I mean this film was epic. When it was released computer animation was only just beginning to merge and with the film itself merged with computer and real life environments the overall blend is just breathtaking. And the story is beautiful and I don’t understand why people don’t watch it more!

5. Name one Disney film that you think is overrated.

I could say Moana again but I feel that all Moana fans would cut out my heart but apart from that I would properly say Aladdin. I like the film but that mainly because of Robin Williams Genie, apart from that just really overrated for me.

6. Favourite Disney quote?

Sometimes the Right Path is not the easiest. ~ Pocahontas But there are so many more but that one was in my head at the moment or there is a Dumbo one to! ‘Don’t just fly, Soar!’

7. If you could be best friends with any of the Disney princesses, which one would it be?

Ahh too many to choose from and I’ve already mentioned Belle so I will go with Pocahontas. I love her spirit and how she stays strong with her beliefs and rarely wavers in them.

8. Favourite sidekick?

Mushu! Or Timon and Pumba! How can I choose but those with comedy always make the best sidekicks right!

9. Do you remember the first Disney movie you watched, if you do, what was it?

I don’t but I have a feeling it was properly either Dinosaur or The Lion King as those are the films which appear in my early memory and I was known for just watching films over and over after first watching them.

10. Have you ever been to Disneyland?

Sadly no ;( Through I’ve always wanted to so maybe some day!

Thank you to Paige for all these awesome questions and for collabing with me on one of my favourite subjects of all time – Disney! Make sure that you all check out my blog to see the questions I asked Paige and all her answers too! Thank you!

~ ACupofWonderland

Reviews

Book Review – To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han (Spoiler-Free!)

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Synopsis:

What if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them… all at once?

Sixteen-year-old Lara Jean Song keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her. They aren’t love letters that anyone else wrote for her; these are ones she’s written. One for every boy she’s ever loved—five in all. When she writes, she pours out her heart and soul and says all the things she would never say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only. Until the day her secret letters are mailed, and suddenly, Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control.

Review:

So, there were things I liked about this book, and things I didn’t like so much. I’ll start off by saying that I liked the plot for this book a lot, it was engaging enough for me to read it all in one night! I read this before joining the YA book community, however, so I wasn’t very informed about upcoming releases etc, so I thought I was reading a stand alone, which was disappointing when I got to the end and I still had unanswered questions and no closure!

The way that Jenny Han portrays family relationships is really lovely. You have this close-knit family that all come together to support one another after the death of their mother, and it’s so nice to read about how close The Songbirds are!

But then you have romantic relationships. I’m not going to spoil, but there is a big NO-NO with one of the boys Lara Jean wrote to and loved (if you have read the book, you’ll know who I’m talking about), and I know that you can’t help who you love, but it made me really angry with Lara Jean. Her motivation behind the letters was innocent, however, so I was able to let go of my anger.

“My letters are for when I don’t want to be in love anymore. They’re for good-bye. Because after I write in my letter, I’m not longer consumed by my all-consuming love…My letters set me free. Or at least they’re supposed to.”

I liked the main character, Lara Jean, and I know she’s only 16, but she seems so much younger. The way she thinks and some of the things that she does are rather immature. Despite this, I did connect with her and I think she is a likeable character. You can tell she loves her sisters very much, and she’s flawed like any person would be. Oh, and Harry Potter was referenced, which always gets you points from me!

Overall, I definitely enjoyed the book, and I’m so excited about the film that is being made! There were definitely a few things I didn’t like, but it was interesting enough and I will read the next one in the series when I get around to it. My TBR is unbelievably long at the moment!

I give To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before 3 stars.

3-stars

-Books&Belle xx

Tags

Top 5 Wednesday: Favourite Fancasts

Top 5 Wednesday (#T5W) is something that I discovered through Ash’s blog, so go check her out! It was created by Lainey and Samantha in 2013 and is still going strong. There is a new topic every week, and you choose 5 books that are related to that topic. If you’re interested in joining in, have a look at their Goodreads group for more information.

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This weeks topic is favourite fancasts. Fancasts are actors you’d like to play your favorite characters or imagine your favorite characters as.

1. Lily Collins as Zoey Redbird from the HoN Series

If they ever make HoN into movies/TV series, they should so have Lily Collins play Zoey. I don’t know what it is about her, I’ve just always pictured her as Zoey when reading the series!

2. Karen Gillan and Aaron Taylor Johnson as Lily and James Potter from Harry Potter

I thought I’d just pair these two together. These actors seem to be really popular fancasts for James and Lily, but I really do think that they’d play them perfectly!

3. Scarlett Byrne as Amren from the ACOTAR Series

I watched Scarlett as Nora from TVD before I read the ACOTAR series, and she is just always who has come to mind when I think about what Amren would look like. I think that there are some very subtle similarities in their personalities, too.

4. Chase Crawford as Tamlin from the ACOTAR Series

I have no lost love for Tamlin, but I do like Chace Crawford and think that he would play Tamlin quite well. He’d probably have to get a bit more muscle, but other than that he’d be good.

5. Jenna Coleman as Emily Duran from Feel Me Fall

I feel like Emily would have that sort of sweet innocent look about her, and Jenna Coleman definitely has that, so in my opinion, she’d play Emily pretty well.

This took me longer than I thought it would. I thought I’d be able to pick fancasts really quickly, but it was actually so hard! I wanted to make sure I picked who I considered the perfect actor for the character I was fancasting.

Remember, if you’re interested in taking part in #T5W, check out their Goodreads group!

-Books&Belle xx

Collabs

Guest Post From Emma: 5 Inspiring Harry Potter Females

5 Most Inspiring Harry Potter Females

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So, Emma and I decided that we wanted to collaborate on a post together. We decided on guest posts sharing the most inspiring females from Harry Potter and Disney. I did Disney, and Emma did Harry Potter! If you want to check out who I think the most inspiring females from Disney are, head over to Em’s World.

Harry Potter may be the story of ‘the boy who lived’ but that doesn’t mean it isn’t full of inspiring females! There are a couple that came close to making this list like Minerva McGonagall but I’ve chosen what I think are the 5 most inspiring Harry Potter females.

5. Luna

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Luna is my favourite character from the series because she doesn’t care what anyone thinks of her. She does what she wants and dresses how she wants which is a rare thing. She may not have many (or any) friends when we first meet her but that doesn’t seem to bother her. She’s always kind and a wonderful friend to Harry and she has such a great outlook on life and the world, even when it’s dark.

4. Tonks

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Tonks is one of the most fun characters in the series (after Fred and George) and she brings joy and happiness to everyone around her with her shape-shifting. Tonks always follows her heart and doesn’t let anyone tell her what to do. When Lupin tries to protect her from falling in love with him, she doesn’t take no for an answer. She sacrifices her life for her friends and so that her son, Teddy, can grow up in a Voldemort-free world.

3. Molly

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Molly is the mother everyone wants, she’s kind and caring but can also be strict when she needs to be – her howler is one of my favourite scenes in the films! She’s one of the only mothering figures in Harry’s life (along with Professor McGonagall) and she cares for him like he’s her own. She will defend and protect her children by risking her own life and she’s extremely powerful, she would have to be to defeat Bellatrix!

2. Hermione

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Hermione is such an underrated character in my opinion. She may be annoying to some, but she’s an incredible role model and that can’t be denied. She works hard in school, is loyal to her friends and stands up for what she believes in. One of the things I really wish made it into the films is Hermione’s SPEW (Society for the Promotion of Elfish Welfare) campaign. It really shows how she fights for what she knows is right.

1. Lily

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Lily just had to be number one on this list. She made the ultimate sacrifice for her baby and saved him with her love. Harry was known as the boy who lived, but this only happened because of Lily. When she gave her life in his place out of pure love, Voldemort’s killing curse rebounded off Harry which defeated Voldemort temporarily. Because she died willingly to protect her son, she was able to save him which ultimately saved the entire world.

Did you agree with this list? Let me know by tweeting me @Strictly_Emma!

Thanks for reading, Em xo

Harry Potter

Happy Birthday Hermione Granger

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Today is September 19th, meaning that it is Hermione Granger’s birthday. To celebrate, I thought I’d share The Brightest Witch of Her Age’s top 10 quotes from the books/movies!

1.

“I hope you’re pleased with yourselves. We could all have been killed – or worse, expelled. Now if you don’t mind, I’m going to bed.”

I’m pretty sure everyone knows this quote, but it’s still one of the best.

2.

“Oh, HONESTLY, don’t you two read?”

(I think this about 12 times a day when I’m with my friends).

3.

“At least no one on the Gryffindor team had to buy their way in! They got in on pure talent!”

YES, HERMIONE.

4.

“Harry caught the fish and I did my best with it! I notice I’m always the one who ends up sorting out the food; because I’m a girl, I suppose!”

Hermione noticing gender stereotypes on not liking what she sees is great. Bet that was the last time that Ron complained about Hermione’s cooking!

5.

“It’s sort of exciting, isn’t it? Breaking the rules.”

This line never fails to make me smile.

6.

“No, I’m not, I’m hoping to do some good in the world.”

I love this quote so much that I actually included a variation of it in my personal statement for university. It’s my cover photo on my personal Twitter, too. It’s definitely something I relate to!

7.

“Actually, I’m highly logical, which allows me to look past the extraneous detail and perceive clearly that which others overlook.”

She’s brilliant.

8.

“I mean, you could claim that anything’s real if the only basis for believing in it is that nobody’s proved it doesn’t exist!”

Truuuuuue.

9.

Just because you have the emotional range of a teaspoon doesn’t mean we all have!”

Another one that always makes me smile!

10.

“Mudblood and proud of it.”

And so she should be.

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So, there we have it. Happy Birthday to my favourite fictional character. No matter what wonderful actress plays her, she’s always brilliant!

-Books&Belle xx

Tags

Down The TBR Hole #2: Conquer your TBR

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I originally saw this post from Boston Book Reader, but it was created by Lost In A Story, and I loved the idea.

THIS IS HOW IT WORKS: (straight from original post)

  • Go to your goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopses of the books
  • Decide: keep it or should it go?

1. The Summer I Turned Pretty

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The synopsis of this book really interests me, and I quite like what I’ve read by Jenny Han.

JUDGEMENT: KEEP.

2. Pretending To Be Erica

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I might come back to this in the future, but for now, I’m just not interested in it and don’t see myself getting around to it anytime soon.

JUDGEMENT: GO.

3. Saving June

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I’ve read this before, but it’s on my GoodReads TBR again because I want to re-read.

JUDGEMENT: KEEP.

4. Stay

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I’ve already brought this and it’s on my shelf, so I’ll make myself read it sooner or later.

JUDGEMENT: KEEP.

5. Thirteen Reasons Why

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I have this book already, so I will read it. Plus, I’ve watched the show (I made an exception, I usually always read the book before) and I enjoyed it.

JUDGEMENT: KEEP.

So, I got rid of 1/5 books this week. It’s still an improvement! I just can’t part with some of them.

-Books&Belle xx

 

Reviews

Book Review – Nemesis by Brendan Reichs (Spoiler Free!)

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So, I won Nemesis in a giveaway hosted on Twitter by Jemima over at Drinking Books, so I’d just like to thank her and shout her out for introducing me to such an amazing book before I begin this review. Go check her out!

Synopsis:

He killed me. He killed me not. He killed me.

It’s been happening since Min was eight. Every two years, on her birthday, a strange man finds her and murders her in cold blood. But hours later, she wakes up in a clearing just outside her tiny Idaho hometown—alone, unhurt, and with all evidence of the horrifying crime erased.

Across the valley, Noah just wants to be like everyone else. But he’s not. Nightmares of murder and death plague him, though he does his best to hide the signs. But when the world around him begins to spiral toward panic and destruction, Noah discovers that people have been lying to him his whole life. Everything changes in an eye blink.

For the planet has a bigger problem. The Anvil, an enormous asteroid threatening all life on Earth, leaves little room for two troubled teens. Yet on her sixteenth birthday, as she cowers in her bedroom, hoping not to die for the fifth time, Min has had enough. She vows to discover what is happening in Fire Lake and uncovers a lifetime of lies: a vast conspiracy involving the sixty-four students of her sophomore class, one that may be even more sinister than the murders.

Review:

When I entered the giveaway on Twitter, I knew that even if I didn’t win, I was going to end up reading this book. I read the synopsis and I was so intrigued! However, I won the giveaway, so fortunately I didn’t have to go and buy myself a copy!

I loved this book. I was expecting some good from it, but it completely blew me away. It constantly kept me interested, and the plot twist had me like… what?!?! It was just so unpredictable, as soon as I thought I had an idea of where the book was going, something would happen and it would completely smash that idea into pieces. You’d think that would be frustrating, but it just made me all that more eager to get to the end of the book and find out what was going on!

I really enjoy Reichs’ writing style and I thought the way he developed certain characters was brilliant. You see a massive change in Noah, for example. He goes from being a cowardly bystander to someone very different. I loved Min, too, and really connected with her. Whilst she doesn’t change very much, there is definitely development with her that I won’t go into because I don’t want to spoil it. The relationships in this book are interesting, too. Min and Tack’s friendship is really lovely, you can tell how much they care for one another, and then Min’s relationship with her mother. Again, it’s stuff I’m not going to go into because spoilers suck, but I couldn’t not give it a mention.

There is one thing I’ll say, and it’s by no fault of the author or anyone else except me, but I thought I was reading a stand-alone, so to get to the end and see not all the questions I had had been answered was irritating. However, I really did love the last chapter, it completely shocked me and definitely left me wanting more.

As soon as I had finished Nemesis, I went straight onto Twitter to find Brendan Reich for two reasons. The first was to tell him what an amazing book he had written, because we need to support our authors, especially when their work is as amazing as Reich’s! The second was to find out when the sequel was being released, which is March 6th 2018, and it will be called Genesis. I’m so excited for it, that I’ve added it to my countdown app on my phone! Definitely one of my most anticipated releases of 2018.

Overall, I give Nemesis a very well deserved 5 stars.

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-Books&Belle xx

 

Tags

The Sunshine Blogger Award

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I was nominated by the lovely Fernanda over at The Wanderlust Reader, so thank you to her, and if you don’t already, go and give her a follow!

Without further ado, I give you The Sunshine Blogger Award!

The Rules

  • Give Appreciations of the blogger who nominated them and add them to the post.
  • Answer the 11 question the blogger asked
  • Nominate 11 other blogs and give them questions
  • Let the nominees know and add the sunshine blogger Award logo to your post

Fernanda’s Questions

1. If you could have any fictional character play you in a movie about your life, who you you pick and why?

I’d pick Hermione Granger, because she’s my favourite fictional character and I feel like I relate to her the most, so perhaps she might find it easiest to play me!

2. What inspired the name of your blog?

The books part was to make it clear that my blog is a book blog, and the Belle part is because Belle is my favourite Disney princess. Plus, she’s a bookworm too, so I felt that she linked in with the blog type rather well.

3. What’s a book or series that you loved but others seem to hate?

This is difficult for me to answer, hmm. I loved Twilight and a lot of people seemed to dislike that? But then I’ve seen plenty of others say they enjoyed it, so I don’t know.

4. Narnia or Hogwarts?

Anyone who knows me would definitely be able to guess my answer to this one. 10000% Hogwarts.

5. If you could only ever read books by one author, who would you choose and why?

J.K. Rowling, because I love Harry Potter.

6. Controversial question: does pineapple have a rightful place on pizza?

NO.

7. Audiobooks: yay or nay?

Never used one, so I don’t really have an opinion!

8. A stranger approaches you and tells you that they can magically transport you to any fictional world. What do you do? Where do you go? TELL ME!

Well, I ask for proof before walking off with a stranger, because duh, stranger danger. But after that I say hell yes and go to the wizarding world.

9. What’s the last book you gave a 5 stars and 1 star rating?

I gave 1 star to The Vampire Diaries series, and I believe the last book I gave 5 stars was Local Girl Missing by Claire Douglas.

10. Not really a question but create a playlist with songs, which you hopefully like, that spell out your name!

P –  Pretty Hurts by Beyonce.

A – Afire Love by Ed Sheeran.

I – I’ll Be Good by Jaymes Young.

G – Galway Girl – Ed Sheeran.

E – Ex’s & Oh’s – Elle King

11. If you could be any mythical creature, which would you be?

A unicorn. Or a mermaid.

My Questions

  1. How many books have you read this year?
  2. Paperbacks, hardbacks, e-books or audiobooks?
  3. If you could be best friends with any fictional character, who would it be?
  4. Is there a book/series that everyone else loved, but you weren’t too keen on?
  5. If you could speak another language, which would it be?
  6. You’re stranded on an island in the middle of nowhere, which fictional character do you choose to be stranded with you?
  7. What would you do if you had an hour to spend in a fictional world of your choice?
  8. Is there a place you usually read? (Garden, bed, sofa…)
  9. Do you have many friends IRL that are bookworms?
  10. What is your favourite breakfast food?
  11. Piece of advice you’d give to someone considering starting a book blog?

I TAG:

Gemma – An Ocean Glimmer

Laura – Laura Noakes

You’re meant to nominate 11 other blogs, but I feel like a lot of bloggers have been tagged for this recently, so I don’t want to re-tag them. But if you’re reading this and you haven’t been tagged, but would like to be, feel free to do the post!

Thank you once again to Fernanda for tagging me!

-Books&Belle xx

Uncategorized

Blog Tour: A Review of Fire Lines by Cara Thurlbourn

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Synopsis:

When your blood line awakens, how do you choose between family and freedom?
Émi’s father used to weave beautiful tales of life beyond the wall, but she never
knew if they were true.

Now, her father is gone and Émi has been banished to the
Red Quarter, where she toils to support herself and her mother – obeying the
rules, hiding secrets and suffering the cruelties of the council’s ruthless Cadets.
But when Émi turns seventeen, sparks fly – literally.

Her blood line surges into life and she realises she has a talent for magick… a talent that could get her killed. Émi makes her escape, beyond the wall and away from everything she’s ever known. In a world of watchers, elephant riders and sorcery, she must discover the truth about who she really is. But can the new Émi live up to her destiny?

Review:

I’m participating in the blog tour for Fire Lines by Cara Thurlbourn, and the first thing I want to mention is how beautiful the cover is. Seriously, I applaud whoever designed it as it is so lovely, and definitely caught my eye!

I found the first half of the book really promising, and thought that the way that the author created the different societies was really interesting, although it wasn’t completely original, I did like her spin on it! The characters were also well-developed, and I really liked Emi. She was selfless and brave, two characteristics that I definitely like.

The second half, however, I didn’t like so much. I didn’t dislike it, but I feel I was expecting more from it. Some of the decisions that were made were not logical at all, and I thought to myself several times, “why the hell did you just do that?!”

There was something unexpected that happened (which I won’t say, because my reviews are spoiler-free!) that caught me off guard and definitely had me shocked, which then got piqued my interest once again, and left me excited to continue reading.

Overall, I give this book 3.5 stars. It was an enjoyable read that I would recommend to any YA Fantasy lover!

3-stars

.5

 

 

GoodReads Link

Amazon Link

Author Information

 

Cara Thurlbourn writes children’s and young adult fiction. Fire Lines is her first novel and it’s a story she’s been planning since she was fifteen years old. Cara has a degree in English from the University of Nottingham and an MA inPublishing from Oxford Brookes
University.

She lives in a tiny village in Suffolk and has worked in academic and educational publishing for nearly ten years. Cara blogs about her author journey and in November 2016 she crowdfunded her first children’s book. 10% of its profits are donated to animal rehoming charities.

Cara plans to write at least two more books in the Fire Lines series, as well as a young adult mystery series, and has lots more children’s stories waiting in the wings.
You can sign up for Cara’s newsletter, for giveaways, updates and latest releases,
here: www.firelines.co.uk and follow her on Twitter here.

-Books&Belle xx