Top Ten Picks: Fictional Characters

Top Ten Picks is a weekly meme by Jillian about your top 10 picks! Each week, there will be a different theme and this weeks theme is 'fictional characters'. So here are my top 10 fictional character picks (in no particular order) ~


1. Eric Northman/Bubba (Southern Vampire Mysteries series by Charlaine Harris)
2. Elena Michaels/Clayton Danvers (Women Of The Otherworld series by Kelley Armstrong)


3. Jacob Black/Alice Cullen (Twilight Saga by Stephenie Meyer)
4. Albus Dumbledore (Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling)


5. Henry DeTamble/Clare Abshire (The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger)
6. Stevie Rae Johnson (House Of Night series by P.C. & Kristin Cast)


7. Susie Salmon (The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold)
8. Jacob Jankowski (Water For Elephants by Sara Gruen)


9. Harper Connelly (Harper Connelly series by Charlaine Harris)
10. Jane Rizzoli/Maura Isles (Rizzoli/Isles series by Tess Gerritsen)

I did cheat slightly, but it's so hard to come up with only 10 characters you love! Feel free to share some of your favourite fictional characters :)

Top Ten Picks: Book Series

Top Ten Picks is a weekly meme by Jillian about your top 10 picks! Each week, there will be a different theme and this weeks theme is 'book series'. So here are my top 10 book series picks (in no particular order) ~


1. Stephenie Meyer - The Twilight Saga
2. Charlaine Harris - Southern Vampire Mysteries series


3. J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter series
4. Tess Gerritsen - Rizzoli/Isles series


5. Kelley Armstrong - Women Of The Otherworld series
6. Charlaine Harris - Harper Connelly series


7. Michelle Paver - Chronicles Of Ancient Darkness series
8. Patricia Cornwell - Kay Scarpetta series


9. Kay Hooper - Evil Trilogy
10. Cate Tiernan - Wicca series

So what are your favourite series?

Once by Morris Gleitzman

No. of pages: 150
Rating: 9/10
Series: Felix Trilogy (Book 1)

Synopsis: Once I escaped from an orphanage to find Mum and Dad.
Once I saved a girl called Zelda from a burning house.
Once I made a Nazi with a toothache laugh.
My name is Felix. This is my story.

Review: Felix is a Jewish boy being hidden in a Catholic orphanage, his parents having hidden him there when they knew they were all in danger. Felix however is completely oblivious as to what is happening, he thinks Hitler is someone to look up to, and he doesn't really understand what the Nazi's are. That is until he escapes the orphanage to look for his parents and realises life isn't what it once was...

Even though this book was amazingly written, and so easy to read, the actual storyline was very harrowing, and really quite sad. Not only because of the effects of the war, but seeing how Felix slowly loses his innocence and realises life isn't what he thought it was and none of his stories can make this go away. Felix and Zelda are both really sweet characters, and I thought it was lovely how they cared for each other after everything that had happened. Once bears a close resemblence to The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas, it has a similar feel and both are written from the identical perceptions of young boys during a war they don't really understand. I would definitely recommend it, although it's a short book, it certainly gives you a lot to think about, and it's well worth an hour or two of your time.

Blue Moon by Alyson Noel

No. of pages: 362
Rating: 6/10
Series: The Immortals (Book 2)

Synopsis: Things have changed for Ever since she met her beloved Damen - not least because she's got a whole new set of powers, courtesy of her new Immortal status. Just as she's getting stronger, though, Damen seems to be weakening. Panicked at the thought of losing him, Ever finds a path to the in-between world known as Summerland, where she learns the secrets of Damen's tortured past. But in searching for a cure for him, Ever accidentally discovers a way to twist time so she can save her family from the accident that killed them. It's all she's ever wanted - but so is Damen. And Ever must choose between them...

Review: Now that she's Immortal, Ever assumes she has all the time in the world to spend with Damen, learning about her new powers. But something is very wrong, Damen starts to weaken all of sudden, and then is completely unrecognisable as his previous self. Ever must do everything she can to save him, but when she's trying to find a way to save him, she finds something even more important...a way to save her family, but who should she choose?

While the tone of the writing was still incredibly easy to read, meaning that it barely took anytime at all to get through, this book is nowhere near as good as it's predecessor, Evermore. The storyline was pretty boring, and so obvious right from the beginning, yet it takes 300 pages to reveal something you can work out 5 pages into the book. I thought the ending/set up for the next book was something I've seen so many times before, and it just seems so unoriginal. Really unimpressed with this installment, but I'll still give the next book a shot, however, I really think the author needs to think up an original storyline for a series that has quite a lot of potential, but as of yet, is a let down.

The Guernsey Literary And Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows

No. of pages: 240
Rating: 8/10

Synopsis: It's 1946 and author Juliet Ashton can't think what to write next. Out of the blue, she receives a letter from Dawsey Adams of Guernsey - by chance, he's acquired a book that once belonged to her - and, spurred on by their mutual love of reading, they begin a correspondence. When Dawsey reveals that he is a member of the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, her curiosity is piqued and it's not long before she begins to hear from other members. As letters fly back and forth with stories of life in Guernsey under the German Occupation, Juliet soon realizes that the society is every bit as extraordinary as its name.

Review: One day out of the blue, Juliet Ashton, an author struggling to find a new idea for a book, receives a letter from Dawsey Adams, a member of the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. Intrigued, she starts a correspondence with Dawsey, and then with the other members of the society, as they share tales of living through and surviving the war, amongst many other things.

I enjoyed that the whole book was a series of letters to various people, I thought it was an lovely way to format the story. I found all of the stories about the German Occupation really interesting too, and I could imagine the things that they spoke about in their letters to Juliet. I got a little confused with all of the characters at the beginning, but the secondary ones seemed to taper off around half way and then it was a lot easier to keep everyone straight. The characters were really well written, you felt you knew them through their letters and the way they spoke. Kit and Isola were my favourites, I loved Isola's quirky ways and Kit was so adorable. The storyline was pretty predictable I thought though, and I guessed most of what would happen, but it was still a lovely read. I would definitely recommend this to people who enjoy reading stories set around war time, or in the format of letters.

Change Of Heart by Jodi Picoult

No. of pages: 461
Rating: 8/10

Synopsis: Shay Bourne becomes the first person in decades to be sentenced to death in New Hampshire, when he is found guilty of the cold-blooded killing of a policeman and his step-daughter. After eleven years on Death Row, the end is coming for Shay.

Until he sees a news piece about a young girl who urgently needs a heart transplant.

June's husband and daughter died at Shay Bourne's hands, and she thought her greatest desire was to see him killed. Then her remaining daughter is hospitalised, and she realises that there is something she wants even more: for Claire to live. Shay Bourne is offering June's daughter a miracle - a second chance. But at what cost?

Review: June Nealon has her fair share of tragedies, not only were her first daughter and husband murdered, now her second daughter is dying of heart disease, and it seems like there is no hope. But then she hears that the man who murdered her daughter and husband wants to give his heart to Claire when he's killed by the state, but can June bear her daughter to have the heart of the man who ruined her life?

I always enjoy reading Picoult books, she knows how to make you feel torn even though you're sure you know who's in the wrong. I did guess fairly early on what the big twist would be to this one, but it was still really enjoyable none the less. I enjoyed the big aspect of religion and the way it was portrayed by several different people, from athiests to priests, it was interesting not only to learn new things, but also to read the debate over religion. I enjoyed the death row aspect of the story too, it's not something you tend to read about in fiction books a lot, and it seemed well researched. I didn't particularly like June Nealon as a character, if anything I liked Shay the most, and felt he was really well written to make you feel torn about liking him. This was one of the more enjoyable and interesting books by Picoult, and I would definitely recommend it to fans of My Sister's Keeper.
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