Review: The Golden Compass (His Dark Materials #1) by Philip Pullman

After reading Up To This Pointe earlier this month, I was dying to read something else set in the ‘north’ or in the ‘cold’.

The Golden Compass has been on my TBR shelf forever and now seemed like the perfect time to read it since it features the Northern Lights and the north pole as well as a host of other things!

Lyra Belacqua has been raised at Oxford’s, Jordan College, most of her young life. It is here that two very important people come to visit. the first is her uncle, Lord Asriel, who is an explorer and who has just returned from the north with some dangerous findings.

Lord Asriel suspects that there is an alternative universe on the Northern Lights which he believes he can access. Lord Asriel intends to venture back to the north to continue his research, immediately.

The other visitor is Mrs Coulter, who is put in charge of Lyra. Mrs Coulter is cultured, rich, and charismatic…..she too is an explorer and has a scientific operation in the north. Mrs Coulter intends to take Lyra to the north with her but not before she ‘grooms’ Lyra and gets her accustom to London society.

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Review: Changing Nature (The Immortal Descendants #3) by April White

The Immortal Descendants has been one of my most favorite new series over the last year or so. I absolutely love the world that the author has created.

Each book moves the story forward and the world and the premise of the story, characters, and plot are all unique but yet work so well together.

In this third book, we find ‘Clocker’ Saira and Archer enjoying a summer of romance when suddenly Immortals start being kidnapped.

The ‘Mongers’ will do anything to gain power and control over the other descendant families, especially after they target a powerful shifter.

Saira and Archers (along with the rest of her crew) must travel back in time again to track down their nemesis, Bishop Wilder. This time they find themselves in Paris…..1429.

At that time, Paris is anything but the city of love that it is today. The city is besieged by marauding wolves led by a fanatical peasant girl who will be known in history as Joan of Arc.

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Review: Tempting Fate (The Immortal Descendants #2) by April White

Since discovering her power as a ‘clocker’, or an Immortal Descendant, life for Saira Elian hasn’t gotten much easier.

Being a clocker means Saira can transport herself through time at will. She is currently living at St. Brigid’s school where she is learning about her power as well as the powers of the other Descendants.

For the first time in her life she is stable: she has friends, her mother, excelling in school, and her super attractive boyfriend, Archer who happens to be Death’s Descendant–better known as a Sucker, or vampire.

But she is struggling with what it means to rely on others and to truly open her heart to her friends and boyfriend. It’s been easier for her to remain closed off and alone then to have others support her.

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Review: Engn by Simon Kewin

Finn has been raised to fear the notorious Ironclads and their city, Engn. The Ironclads are sent out to the surrounding villages to recruit children to work in the city.

When the Ironclads come, there is no choice but to send the children to Engn even though few return to their homes, parents are required to let the Ironclads take what they want.

When Finn was younger, his sister was taken to Engn which was supposed to mean that Finn was safe as the Ironclads can only take one child per family. But when the Ironclads come for him, this changes everything.

With Finn on his way to Engn and almost certain death, he is reminded of a promise he made long ago–Finn and his friend Conner vowed to destroy Engn for good.

But Finn soon discovers that task is larger than originally thought.  In Engn, a dictatorship runs the city and the people/workers are slaves…broken and beaten to an inch of their lives and once they are no longer useful, they are terminated.

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Guest Post: Engn by Simon Kewin

In addition to reviewing the MG/YA book Engn by Simon Kewin, he also agreed to write a guest post about how he created the world and city of Engn. Without further ado please welcome Simon Kewin to The Lit Bitch!

Building Engn

The world of Engn grew out of a simple, central idea: a city-sized, steam-powered machine that generations of people have lived and worked within.
 
I was drawn to the idea on lots of levels. I liked the thought of all the odd contraptions and mysteries and weirdness I could build into such a vast and ancient machine. In the book, Engn has grown so huge that most people within have stopped “seeing” it; have stopped wondering what it is actually for. That seemed like a fun idea to play with. I love fiction that has big, cool ideas in it. I also figured the setting would give me lots of scope for adventures and scrapes for my protagonist, Finn, to face.