I Hunt Killers by Barry Lygra

I Hunt Killers begins: ” It was a beautiful day. It was a beautiful field. Except for the body”. This is the first book in the Jasper Dent series and is a thriller about the battle between good and evil. Book two continues with Game and the last book in the series is Blood of my Blood.
Seventeen-year-old Jasper “Jazz” has learned all about being a serial killer from his notorious “Dear Old Dad,” but believes that he has a conscience that will help fight his own urges and right some of his father’s wrongs. Can we change what we were born with?

Hear what Barry Lyga says about his novel as he chats with Libba Bray.

Find out more about Barry Lyga here.

Read reviews on I Hunt Killers here.

Books in the library by Barry Lyga include:

  1. The astonishing adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl: a novel
  2. Boy toy
  3. I hunt Killers
  4. Game
  5. Blood of my Blood

Brother, brother

Brother Brother is a new addition to the library by Clay Carmichael; an author and illustrator from North Carolina, USA. It is a novel about “finding out that who you are and where you come from aren’t necessarily the same thing”.
If you are used to fast action and adrenaline-packed story lines how about this for a change? It may be a “slow-paced book” but don’t let that put you off, because according to Sara Gundell “Every little moment builds and builds until a truly incredible climax”.

Visit the website here

Guinness World Records 2015

Guinness World Records 2015

Guinness World Records 2015

The latest edition of the Guinness World Records has arrived in the library. It is amazing to consider that it is celebrating its 60th anniversary, as the very first edition came out in 1955. Sixty years ago in New Zealand the Rimutaka rail tunnel was opened, the last polio epidemic broke out and the first long-distance flight into Antarctica took place.

This copy also has an amazing 3D App which unlocks 3D images and makes them burst out onto the page. [Go to page 6  and scan the QR code to download the app. ] If you scan a page with a “See it 3D ” sign, for example  Living planet [on page 42] you will find images coming to life from the page. By scanning the whale you will find yourself looking out at marine life through an undersea  submarine.

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Mrs H.


Messenger of Fear by Michael Grant

Good news for all Michael Grant fans (author of the popular Gone series) !

A new series starting with Messenger of Fear has arrived in the library today. It promises to be a tense supernatural story of good and evil. If you enjoyed the weirdness of Gone, you are going to race through Messenger of Fear.

“Why do we need to understand? I want to ask him that, because there has to be some very good reason why my subconscious mind would lay these sad images before me like a fortune teller laying out her tarot cards. But all of Messenger’s answers were vague, and after all, was there a point in asking why within a dream? Eventually I would wake up, and then I could consider the meaning of it all. Calmly, coolly, with the sick sadness of it all pushed aside and relabeled as nothing more than random imagery conjured from an overtired mind.”

If I Stay by Gayle Forman


If I stay by Gayle Forman is the story of  a girl with a choice to make; whether to live, or die. The author weaves a wonderful story through time, backwards and forwards, past and present ( pulling together the threads of Mia’s life, her key events, her friends and family) up the point of a terrible accident. It is another example of a story about someone in an “out of body experience”.

Mia is a girl from a musical family but unlike her rock band guitar playing father, she plays the cello. This makes her feel ” as if she [comes] from a different tribe. ” To add to her discomfort she also has a boyfriend in a punk rock band. Mia talks about her mother eventually acquiring a taste for classical music ” like learning to appreciate a stinky cheese”.

The movie opens in New Zealand soon.

Gayle Forman wrote that “music was a huge part of this story [drawing] a lot of inspiration from Yo-Yo Ma – whose own work informs much of Mia’s story – and from Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova, whose song ‘Falling Slowly’ she “probably listened to more than 200 times while working on the book”.

Falling Slowly from the movie Once (2006)

Yo-Yo Ma was born in 1955 to Chinese parents living in Paris. He began to study the cello with his father at the age of four and traveled with his family to New York, where he spent most of his formative years. Later, his principal teacher was Leonard Rose at The Juilliard School.

When Mia auditions for The Juilliard School she has to play five pieces one of which is “a movement from Ennio Morricone’s The Mission, a fun but risky choice because  Yo-Yo Ma had covered this and everyone would compare”.

Mrs H.

Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor

Screen shot 2014-08-29 at 12.44.45 PMLast week I was lucky enough to hear Laini Taylor talking about her books and  how she works as a writer. Laini lives in Portland, Oregon, USA (with her family) and although she has traveled to various countries, this was the first time that she had visited New Zealand. Calling in on Auckland on her way to the WORD Christchurch (the 2014 Writers and Readers Festival) she spoke freely about her experiences, and reveled in the opportunity to meet her fans.

Liani was great fun, and laughed a lot, and as a result made her audience feel very welcome and at ease with asking her questions about her books. Laini admitted to being a writer that chose her words very carefully, sometimes spending a day on a paragraph, so perhaps this was why she found writing a book easy to start, but hard to finish. Despite this, she never gives up on a project and the last book in the Daughter of Smoke and Bone fantasy  has now been published; Dreams of Gods and Monsters.

Laini has written a number of  books (plus one finally finished but probably never-to-be-published novel about ballerinas).

They include:

On the plane over to New Zealand Laini was working on the fifth version of a movie script. So if you have not read any fantasy lately, you have time to try the Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy before the movie comes out.

Mrs H.

PS. For more visual clues have a look at this interesting Pinterest board for Daughter of Smoke and Bone.

Who are you and what is real?


Quite by chance I have read a series of books recently which, whilst all being very different, have all had a spooky continuity. They have all asked questions about reality and identity, and involved stories about people trying to find themselves and get back home.

Screen shot 2014-08-15 at 3.50.36 PMThe first book,  Nowhere Boys by Elise McCredie,  is based on an Australian television drama series [by Tony Ayres and Beth Frey] that won the Australian Film Institute Award for best Children’s Television Drama in 2013. It is a fantasy adventure about four very different teenage boys who spend a night in the bush when a school excursion goes wrong. But when they return home, they discover that they are trapped in a parallel world where no one recognises them and they no longer exist. What has happened? Is it magic? Is it demons? Why has this happened? and how are they going to get home?

The second book, Flip is Martyn Bedford“s first young adult novel [although he has published five novels for adults]. Flip is a much more intense psychological thriller about a boy called Alex who wakes up one morning to find himself trapped in the body of someone else; this person shares the same birthday but nothing else. He lives in very different part of the country, he has a sister not a brother, he is popular, he is good at sports and he has lots of girlfriends. Alex knows that at his core he is not Philip, or Flip, but where is his “unique inner essence”,  is he really a “psychic evacuee” and how can he return to his family?

The third and final novel I read was More Than This by Patrick Ness. It has been described as a “tense thriller” about “love and survival.” Our copy in the library has a lovely message at the front of the book from the author especially for Australian and New Zealand readers! In it he explains that this book started as an idea in his head whilst he was in our “part of the world”. More Than This begins with Seth drowning; then he wakes up. Where is he? Is he in hell? Is he dreaming? Is he living in his imagination? Little by little we find out about Seth as he tries to reconcile his past with his present. I wont spoil your delight of discovery by telling you any more, but I would say that this book is perhaps the most demanding and challenging  read of the three.

Mrs H.