Monthly Archives: June 2016

Top Ten TV Shows

Top Ten
Today’s topic is a freebie and seeing as the hosts decided to talk about ten hobbies they have other than reading, I thought I’d write about the top ten things I watch when I’m not reading (which is happening ever-increasingly of late…unfortunately). So here are my Top Ten TV Shows.banner

  1. DC’s Legends of Tomorrownt_16_Legends-of-tomorrow
    A ragtag group of ninjas/tech geniuses/not quite humans/ criminals travel through time trying to stop an evil dude from ending the world. Favourite show of all time, a title earned in only 13 episodes. Every episode is like tuning into a movie, it’s brilliant. What really makes this show is it’s characters though, Caity Lotz’s Black Canary, Wentworth Miller’s Captain Cold and Dominic Purcell’s Heatwave are the reason I watch this show and love it so much, they are just delightful to watch.peachy
  2. iZombieizombie
    I love this approach to Zombies and also how funny it manages to be, basically the main character is a Zombie who works as a mortician and eats the brains of the recently murdered. She takes on the personality of the brain she has eaten that week and uses their memories to solve their murders making for very entertaining watching and a strange procedural crime show. Also, Ravi, her bestie, is HILARIOUS.pew pew pew
  3. FlashThe-Flash-TV-Series-Logo
    Barry Allen is the best. The Flash is awesome. Can’t even say anything else just watch it.
  4. Agent Carteragent carter
    If I could go back to any era in time, it would be the 50’s and I would do it as Agent Peggy Carter in this quirky crime/sci-fi drama. It’s a strange but beloved addition to the MCU.
  5. Supernaturalsupernatural
    If you’re on the internet and you don’t know what Supernatural is about, I really don’t knwo what to say to you because it has literally overrun Tumblr.feelings
  6. Prison Breakprison break
    Two brothers try to escape prison and chaos ensues and it is GLORIOUS. I was a late addition to this fandom, only watching the series in April but oh my god Wentworth Miller is just too much to resist and I need the reboot NOW.
  7. The 100The-100-Cast-Promos-the-100-tv-show-37080703-1024-768
    100 teenage delinquents are sent to earth to try and recolonise after a nuclear disaster. This series is based on the books by Kass Morgan, who is now coming to YALC! This show is so intense, unpredictable and full of characters you want to love but know are gonna probably get killed off at some point. It’s AWESOME.
  8. Grey’s Anatomygreys-anatomy-cast
    Probably the black sheep of my TV list, being the only one with no fantastical elements, however, this long-running medical drama is ADDICTIVE. In a hospital where probably more doctors die than patients, a group of interns are jsut tying to live their lives and become qualified doctors but since when does that mean it’s going to be easy? To be honest, I’ve probably had more heart-pounding moments with this show that with some of the sci-fi ones where the fate of the world is at stake.ive survived
  9. Marvel’s Agent’s of S.H.I.E.L.D.agents_of_shield-wide
    More content from the MCU? Count me in!
  10. Orphan Blackorphan-black-clones
    If you aren’t watching this show, why the hell not? It’s about a group of clones trying not to die as a million different nefarious corporations try to either take them down, take them in for testing, or buy them, pretty much.

 

High School Musical Book Tag

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I know this seems like a strange choice for a book tag but I found it at Aprilus Maximus on Youtube and thought it was very topical seeing as I am in a production of High School Musical which opens TODAY!
If you haven’t seen High School Musical, get out. If you have then you’ll know what I mean when i tell you I am playing Mrs Darbus and that she is my spirit animal as she is the school’s crazy drama teacher (keep tabs on my Twitter here, I will post a picture in costume tonight because it is MENTAL). I kid you not, one of my lines includes the phrases “crucible of learning” and “chapel of the arts”, it’s great fun!

darbus

Anyways, the tag has paired different songs from the musical with bookish questions and I am going to answer them

1. The Start of Something New – A new favourite genre/author/series

start of something newnever evers lobsters
Right, Lucy Ivison probably thinks I am a total stalker because I read her and Tom Ellen’s book Lobsters earlier in the year, and now I tweet at her all the time and I have mentioned them in like every second blog post since I relaunched. It’s just because I love their books, Lobsters and Never Evers (which I reviewed here) so much. They are hysterical and amazing and cute and just absolutely BRILLIANT. So read them. Now.
2. What I’ve Been Looking For – A book that has everything you’ve ever wantedwhat ive been looking for tmi

The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare is a perfect blend of action, humour, feels and badassery. It checks all the boxes and is always great to come back to for rereading.

3. Fabulous – A book with the biggest diva

fabulous hsm

Finnick-Odair

Well hello there Mr Odair.

4. Status Quo – A stereotype defying character

Annabeth_Chase

Annabeth Chase from the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series by Rick Riordan proving once and for all the dumb blonde is merely a label, and a stupid one at that.

5. Boys Are Back – The best bromance

handshake

The BroTP of BroTPs has got to be Jace and Alec (to bring up the Mortal Instruments series again). I mean they just have the greatest exchanges:

“Just because you said dragon demons were extinct—”
“I said mostly extinct.”
Alec jabbed a finger toward him.
“Mostly extinct,” he said, his voice trembling with rage, “is NOT
EXTINCT ENOUGH.”
“I see,” said Jace. “I’ll just have them change the entry in the demonology textbook from ‘almost extinct’ to ‘not extinct enough for Alec. He prefers his monsters really, really extinct.’ Will that make you happy?”

“We shouldn’t,” protested Isabelle. “The Clave has a plan.”
“The Clave has the collective intelligence of a pineapple,” said Jace.
Alec blinked up at them. “Jace is right.”
Isabelle turned on her brother. “What do you know? You weren’t even paying attention.”
“I was,” Alec said, injured. “I said Jace was right.”
“Yeah, but there’s like a 90% chance of me being right most of the time, so that’s not proof you were listening,” said Jace. “That’s just a good guess.”

“It’s a girl,” Jace said, recovering his composure. “Surely you’ve seen girls before, Alec. Your sister Isabelle is one.”

6. What Time is it? – Your favourite summer read

what time is it
david levithan

Anything by David Levithan. I love his books and you’re going to feel ridiculously happy and then heart-breakingly sad, but you’ll have a great time. I read Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares, a 100% Christmas read, in the heart of July and it was still absolutely amazing!
7. Everyday – If you had to look at one book cover every day for the rest of your life, what would it be?

everyday

LOOK AT IT, IT’S SO PRETTY I’M GONNA DIE!

pride and prejudice
8. Just Wanna be with you – A book you couldn’t put down

just wanna be with you

meyer

The Host by Stephanie Meyer. It’s like 600/700 pages and I binged it over like three days. Irregardless of your views on Twilight, love it/ hate it/ don’t care at all, The Host is definitely worth a read. The characters are really interesting, the setting is immersive and the risk feels so real your heart will be pounding.
9. Scream – A character that frustrated you

screaming

Her name was Scarlett and she let me down, as evidenced by the following tweets.


10. High School Musical – Your favourite fictional school

hogwarts

DUM DUM DA DUM DUM DA DUUUUUUUUM DUUUUUUUUUM
11. Humuhumunukuapua’a – The most ridiculous book/scene/character you have ever read

WAT

Okay so there’s this series I love called the Staphanie Plum Bail Bonds series, and there are 22 of these books but they’re more procedural that episodic so you don’t need to read them all nor do you need to read them in order. The protagonist, Stephanie Plum, is a pretty crap bounty hunter and she’s trying to catch this guy with the assistant of her plus-size, former prostitute, assistant, Lula, who is eating fried chicken. They go to the guy’s place of residence, which turns out to be a camper van, and knock on the door. Upon getting no response, Lula breaks in and then comes screaming straight out again chased by an alligator, because this felon owns one. Chaos ensues, they end up throwing the chicken at it and running away but it was so funny and ridiculous it was amazing.

Another highlight of the series is when Stephanie gets kidnapped in one of the books and gets rescued by a school bus being driven by her foul-mouthed, transvestite friend, Sally Sweet who has just give up life as a drag queen and taken a job as a school bus driver.

There are so many ridiculous but amazing moments, it’s just absolutely fab!

This concludes my High School Musical Tag! I hope you enjoyed it and if you are reading this then I tag YOU!

Top Ten Most Anticipated Releases For The Second Half Of The Year

Top Ten

Hosted at The Broke and Bookish

Do you ever have that moment when you write a post and then it doesn’t schedule properly and then you don’t find out until a week later because busyness occurred and then you’re MAD. That is what happened when I came to write this week’s Top Ten Tuesday and found that because of my inattention and hectic show week madness, this post didn’t publish for some reason. This week’s Top Ten Tuesday is supposed to be my Top Ten releases of 2016 so far but I have only read 4 new releases this year and they were all pretty damn good so ranked I have”

  1. Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clarelady midnight
  2. Never Evers By Lucy Ivison and Tom Ellen (I reviewed this here last week)never evers
  3. The Trials of Apollo: The Lost Oracle by Rick Riordantrials of apollo
  4. Stars Above by Marissa Meyerstars above

Without further ado, here is last week’s intended post as I would have been able to write very little for this week’s anyways.

The ten books which I am most excited about in the next six months are (in no particular order):

1. Harry Potter and The Cursed Child by J.K Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany – 31st July

harry_potter_and_the_cursed_child_script.0.0 I feel like this was the really obvious answer but I mean COME ON. It’s the 8th Harry Potter, who ISN’T freaking out over this?

hardly breathe
2. Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas – 6th September

empire-of-thrones-us

Despite still not being finished with Queen of Shadows, these books are too good not to eagerly anticipate!
3. Gemina by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff – 18th October

gemina

If you haven’t read book 1, Illuminae, then you are MISSING SOMETHING AMAZING. One of the most unique reading experiences I have had to date and a kick ass story which really fits the means by which it is told.
4. Turbo Twenty Three by Janet Evanovich – 15th November

turbo 23

Even though it’s the 23rd book in the series, these books never fail to have me cackling hysterically, I always love to come back to these crazy characters and see what they are going to get up to next.

another
5. You Know Me Well by David Levithan and Nina Lacour – 2nd June

you-know-me-well

6. London Belongs to Us by Sarra Manning – 2nd June

london

Both of these books managed to release themselves without me realising but I am super pumped to read them both in time for YALC

getcha head in the game

(Sorry for the excessive HSM gifs, I’m in a production of it in like a week and the excitement is getting real!)
7. United as One by Pittacus Lore – June 19th

united as one

I have been reading this series from the start and it honestly feels like I’m the only one but I don’t care. I am SO pumped to reach the conclusion and see how on earth all our heroes are going to stop the Mogadorians once and for all.

kept waiting
8. Lydia the Wild Girl of Pride and Prejudice by Natasha Farrant – October 25th

lydia the bad bennet girl

Pride and Prejudice. Lydia Bennet. What can I say?lydia
9. Heartless by Marissa Meyer – 8th November

heartless

I have had a Marissa Meyer shaped hole in my heart since I finished Winter and I need more books from her ASAP to try and fill it.
10. Think Twice by Sarah Mylnowski – 7th April

think twice

I swear to god, I have been waiting three years for this sequel and I kept tabs on it and there was literally no announcement that it was happening and then I found it in Waterstones and I haven’t been able to read it because I am too busy trying to get all my YALC books read!! But SOON I shall devour it.

Book Review and Discussion: Never Evers by Tom Ellen and Lucy Ivison

 

bannernever evers

Kicked out of ballet academy and straight into a school ski trip, Mouse knows certain classmates can’t wait to see her fall flat on her face. Meanwhile, Jack looks forward to danger and girls, but hasn’t a clue about either. That’s until French teen sensation Roland arrives in the resort – who Jack’s a dead ringer for. When Roland persuades Jack to be his stand-in for a day, Jack, in disguise, declares his feelings for Mouse. But what happens when he’s no longer a pop star – will it be music and magic on the slopes?

Buy on Amazon        Buy at Waterstones

 

After seeing Lucy Ivison and Tom Ellen at last year’s YALC, I picked up their first novel “Lobsters”, devoured it and then couldn’t wait for their next book and wow, it did not disappoint!

squeal 2

This year Tom Ellen and Lucy Ivison are running a “co-writing” workshop at YALC and will be speaking with Non Pratt at the Edinburgh Book Festival on the 13th of August.

Spoiler free

I’m going to keep my review short and sweet, just like this book: it’s awesome.

thumbs up

Going into the novel I was a bit concerned that the protagonists were quite young, at only 14, whereas in Lobsters they were 17, so closer to my age but it was a needless worry. The youth of the characters is more than made up for in their absolute hilarity. I was reading this book when I was the first person to wake up at a sleepover and had to smother my face with a pillow to avoid waking everyone else up with my laughter.

laughing

nevere evers numbers 2

This was such a fun book to read, the characters were so endearing to read about and I loved how they all had such an individuality about them without feeling like stereotype, they were all well built and wonderful.

squeal

never evers quote

I don’t even know what else I can say about this book. There are so many beautifully bizarre happenstances that I want to gush about but don’t want to ruin them for you so I guess that is really all that I can say!

shrug

5 stars

 

 

Ten Things I Love About (Fictional) Parties

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Hosted at The Broke and The Bookish

Okay so this post is coming 4 days shy of my 18th birthday and so I thought it might be topical to write about nine reasons I love parties (and one reason I don’t) with matched to a book in which you may find a party with the trait I am fond of. So here we go:

1 and 2. Getting Ready and Looking Pretty – The Art of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson

art of being normal

Everybody loves the getting ready part. Choosing your dress, shoes, bag. Trying to figure out how to do your hair and get your make-up just right. I’m not going to lie, hair and make-up are not my forte. Fortunately, my little sister, Molly, is a pro and if it’s a big occasion I can normally talk her into doing it for me.

13123047_558357087676683_1212210234904031587_o

Me on the night of my school Leaver’s Ball, make-up done by my sister.

In “The Art of Being Normal”, David goes to a party as Kate, the girl he longs to be, and he spends ages getting ready, having his mum do his makeup and making sure he feels as beautiful on the outside as he is inside.

3 and 4. Meeting new people and flirting with boys – Lobsters by Tom Ellen and Lucy Ivison

lobsters

Parties are a fun way to meet new people, it’s a fun but chill environment which is great for cultivating new friendships or even relationships.

look at him

In “Lobsters” Sam and Hannah meet for the first time at a party when one finds the other hiding in the bathroom. They have a really sweet, but very awkward, first conversation and then spend the rest of the book trying to find each other and see if they are meant to be – AND IT’S THE BEST THING EVER YOU ALL NEED TO READ THIS.

5.Dancing – Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Pride and Prejudice

Okay so it’s very different to how they did it in Austen’s day – I dread to think what she would say about “twerking” – but dancing has been done at parties for all of history. Whether it’s music you like or somehow the boys have managed to get control of the music and are playing some kind of metal nonsense (not a generalisation, I am speaking from experience with the crowd that I party with) dancing is always going to be fun.

dancing

Mr Darcy and Elizabeth have some of their first conversations while dancing at various balls and look how that turned out! Actually, that’s probably a bad example because she gathered that he was a douche from these encounters….but hey Jane and Bingley had fun!

6. The Food – Catching FireCatching Fire

I’m having a family party in my house which means my mum is doing all the food and I am SO pumped because party food, buffet style, is my favourite thing. We are having mini sandwiches, cocktail sausages, homemade potato salad (my mum’s is the best), homemade millionaire’s shortbread (maybe THIS is the best?) and so much more and I am going to be STUFFED but who cares? YUM

food

Pretty much everything in the world of the Hunger Games sucks, however the party food appears to be the exception which proves the rule, I think this page puts it best.

8. Watching the antics of drunk people – Clockwork Prince
clockwork prince
People watching is amusing when everyone is sober. When people are drunk it is downright hilarious.ross-drunk-o

In Clockwork Prince, Will and Tessa go to a masked ball and are served drinks with “warlock powder” which has similar effects and well, some steamy stuff occurs before Magnus catches them.

9. Watching the DRAMA – Cindercinder

Who’s honestly been to a party when everything goes smoothly? Literally nobody ever. From drunk and embarrassing family members to a random PDAs between people nobody expected (though hopefully at a party with friends rather than family, otherwise you may have a bit of a situation my friend) there is always something going on at a party! As long as you make sure you aren’t the one causing the spectacle then everything is okay.

thisll get messy

Cinder is a sci-fi retelling of Cinderella and I think we all know the kind of drama which occurs at the parties she goes to.

 

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  1. The next morning – Feat. Dubsmash

Spoiler Free Review: The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge

the_lie_tree_front_coverFaith’s father has been found dead under mysterious circumstances, and as she is searching through his belongings for clues she discovers a strange tree. The tree only grows healthy and bears fruit if you whisper a lie to it. The fruit of the tree, when eaten, will deliver a hidden truth to the person who consumes it. The bigger the lie, the more people who believe it, the bigger the truth that is uncovered.

The girl realizes that she is good at lying and that the tree might hold the key to her father’s murder, so she begins to spread untruths far and wide across her small island community. But as her tales spiral out of control, she discovers that where lies seduce, truths shatter . . .

Buy on Amazon      Buy at Waterstones

 

I bought the Lie Tree for my birthday last year with the intention of reading it before YALC 2015 and alas that didn’t happen. However I did take it with me and get it signed! This year I’m a bit more organised and with all the hype surrounding this book between the Costa 2015 Book of the Year and the YA Book Prize nomination, I couldn’t resist picking it up in preparation for this year’s YALC.

Me with Frances Hardinge at YALC 2015

Me with Frances Hardinge at YALC 2015

Spoiler free

The Lie Tree is a book which is miles out of my reading comfort zone. I very rarely read anything in the realm of historical fiction, preferring dystopian or urban fantasies. I am so glad that I took this venture though because I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book, it was ace! Our protagonist, Faith, is a fourteen year old girl on the cusp of being considered an adult in the Victorian time period in which the book is set. Her progression into adulthood is hindered by her family’s relocation to a small island named Vane where she is forced to essentially act as both nurse and teacher to her younger brother, Howard. Faith dreams of being a natural scientist like her father but she is constrained by her gender, a fact which she laments throughout the novel.

i am woman hear me roar

The period setting brings about a really interesting family dynamic because Faith, her mother and her father are all very strong willed characters but obviously Faith and her mother are subordinate to her father, who goes by “The Reverend” and seeing them trying to work around the social construct of the era is fascinating to watch play out. Furthermore the murder mystery element to the story is really cool, it’s like Victorian Cluedo but more twisted because there are so many people with different types of motives and you don’t know who can be trusted.

trust no one

The Tree itself is a super creepy concept and reading Frances Hardinge’s rich imagery of it really adds to that feeling, probably not helped by the fact I was reading at night as well. I don’t want to spoil you any further on that because figuring it out is part of the joy of reading this novel.

“The stone shelf reared before her, now cocooned in black tendrils. The dark spidery mound on top of it glimmered faintly in the dull, gauzy light of the lantern.

too spooky

Watching the plot unfold from the perspective of a fourteen year old girl is amazing because she is just so underestimated by every other character in the book which is why she gets away with so much sneaky and underhanded stuff, it’s glorious to witness her absolutely playing all the other characters because they truly expect nothing remotely interesting from her and she sees that as advantageous and WORKS IT.

“Women and girls were so often unseen, forgotten, afterthoughts. Faith herself had used it to good effect, hiding in plain sight and living a double life.”

patriarchy

Not to mention that she is INCREDIBLY sassy, particularly for the time period, as I expressed in some tweets this week:

pew pew pew

 

lie tree quote

So those are my thoughts on the Lie Tree! I really enjoyed this book and would definitely recommend it to both fans of the genre and people who are looking to read something a bit different because this is certainly unlike anything I have ever read before and that is AWESOME.

4 stars