Fangirling About Fangirl

My beautiful collector's edition.
My beautiful collector’s edition.

If you don’t already know, I am participating in #Rereadathon and #NAAugust this month and the perfect book for each of these is Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell. This is not the first time I have reread Fangirl, nor will it be the last. When I first started really thinking about New Adult, it occurred to me that Fangirl is actually NA.

If you haven’t read Fangirl yet, than why not? Go on. Go read it. I’ll wait…. Have you read it? Yes? Fantastic! So, as you now know, because you’ve read it, Fangirl is from the POV of Cath, an eighteen-year-old college freshman struggling to work out where she fits in in her first year of college. She no longer shares a room with her twin sister, Wren, and their relationship becomes strained, so finds herself sharing a room with a surly person called Reagan, who really does start to grow on you and really it is a story of facing fears and finding yourself.

What I love about this book is the characters and how relatable it is. The characters are varied and I find Cath so relatable.

…didn’t feel up to braving the dining hall; she still didn’t know where it was, or how it worked….
In new situations, all the trickiest rules are the ones nobody bothers to explain to you. (And the ones you can’t google.) Like, where does the line start? What food can you take? Where are you supposed to stand, then where are you supposed to sit? Where do you go when you’re done, why is everyone watching you?… Bah.

Has anyone ever had thoughts similar to these? I have. Anxiousness about new situations. I read this and thought YES! it is the more mundane–usually thought to be the simplest things–that can be the trickiest. I’m a big Cath fan.

‘I feel sorry for you, and I’m going to be your friend.’
‘I don’t want to be your friend,’ Cath said as sternly as she could. ‘I like that we’re not friends.’
‘Me, too,’ Reagan said. ‘I’m sorry you ruined it by being so pathetic.’

There is more to this quote and I loved reading this whole conversation because it made me laugh. Reagan may seem mean, and well, she is, a little, but that’s just Reagan. She’s bold, says what she thinks and is a loyal friend. She really does grow on you. Reagan and Cath are good for each other, I think.

There is romance but it’s not EVERYTHING the book is about. It just happens to be a part of Caths’ story. It’s slow burn which is wonderful to see and Levi is just incredible. Everyone needs a Levi in their life, whether as a friend or romantic partner, everyone needs a Levi. He brightens everything.

There is such an authenticity to Fangirl. It’s realistic and again relatable. For example, I don’t have a twin, but Rowell’s portrayal of twins seemed so real. I could completely understand Cath’s concerns and insecurities. It can be difficult with any sibling but with identical twins…to look just alike and wonder if someone would like your twin better… I’m not sure I’m explaining this very well…

‘It’d be different if you’d grown up with us, or if you’d met us both at the same time—‘
‘What would be different?’
Cath shrugged and scraped at the omelette with a wooden spatula.
‘Then I would know that you had enough information to choose me.’

‘We sound the same. We kind of talk the same. We have all the same gestures.’
‘True,’ he said, nodding, holding her chin up, ‘but it’s almost like that makes your differences more dramatic.’

‘But it’s not you. You don’t push through every moment. You pay attention. You take everything in. I like that about you–I like that better.’
Cath closed her eyes and felt tears catch on her cheeks.
‘I like your glasses,’ he said. ‘I like your Simon Snow T-shirts. I like that you don’t smile at everyone, because then, when you smile at me…Cather.’ He kissed her mouth. ‘Look at me.’
She did.
‘I choose you over everyone.’

Hope that explained what I was trying to say better.

I enjoyed seeing Cath’s writing journey and her discovering that, yes, she can write something other than fanfiction–there’s nothing wrong with fanfiction, but I think Cath was hiding in it. (Cath writes very popular fanfiction about Simon Snow, which is kind of like ‘Harry Potter’.)

Fangirl also deals with mental health issues and I found that this time this resonated with me even more. Fangirl is such a beautiful and realistic portrayal and will always hold a special place in my heart. (Oh, man, I’ve become all emotional.)

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Who has read this beauty? Did anyone else not originally think of it as NA? Go check out #NAAugust on Twitter.




Hello Everyone! So I’m not only participating in NA August this month but Re-Readathon, organised by Bex at An Armchair by the Sea. Bex is a total sweetheart–you should definitely go talk to her. From the 10th-21st August will be all about rereading whichever books you want.

It is not easy deciding what to reread; I would keep choosing book after book, then thought, But which one will I read first?! Not so easy. I think I’ve managed to narrow it down to three.

First I will be rereading Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell. This is not the first time rereading Fangirl–I love it so much. I’ve decided to reread this first because it actually fits in with NA August as well–see how smart I am? Two birds. One stone. This is actually quite violent if you think about it… Why would you want to throw stones at birds? I’m being too literal. Where do these sayings come from? Haha, I digress…

The next books I am going to read during the re-readathon won’t be read in any particular order, whichever I feel like reading at the time.

Of course there’s going to be a Sanderson book on the list. I think I will read Shadows of Self, the second book in the second era of the ‘Mistborn’ novels. I love Wax, Marasi and Wayne, so I’m looking forward to reuniting with them.

The third book is The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness. I loved this book when I first read it and I’ve had the urge to reread it recently, so hopefully I get round to it.

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Anyone else taking part in the re-readathon? Would these be on your list of rereads? If you want to see what everyone will be rereading, take a look at #rereadathon on Twitter.

Under Rose-Tainted Skies

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Author: Louise Gornall
Published: Chicken House, 2016
Pages: 271
Genre: Contemporary, Young Adult, Mental Health
Read more about it Add it on Goodreads 
4.5 out of 5 stars

Hello everyone! Today I have for you a review, which isn’t really a review. Basically, I will share a little on what I thought but mostly I will share quotes, because this book is very quotable, in my opinion.

Under Rose-Tainted Skies is an open and honest account, from the POV of Norah Jane Dean, of someone living with agoraphobia, OCD and depression. This is a book, I feel, that is so vitally important; it’s not only important for people also living with mental health conditions but for those without. It is a book which I think–desperately hope–will be an eye-opener for people and hopefully help them to have a better grasp of mental health illnesses, because you may not be able to physically see these illnesses, but that does not mean they are not there.

Upon buying this book, I remember saying, “If this is a book about a boy coming along and their love ‘curing’ all, then I will throw the book across the room” and this is serious business because I would never want to harm a book (no books were harmed during the writing of this post). Luckily I wanted to hug this book instead of throw it. There is a love interest and I did find the fact that he likes comics and wants to study art a little clichéd, but it was beautiful and realistic because he didn’t ‘cure’ all; Luke awoke feelings in Norah that she hadn’t yet experienced, which terrified her. He was there for Norah and did his utmost best to understand but he wasn’t there as a character to ‘fix’ her. Mental illness doesn’t just go away, you learn to manage it and live with it the best you can, it doesn’t disappear over night because a guy comes along and I’m so glad that Louise Gornall provided a more realistic take on mental health. (Also, there was a great mother-daughter relationship! Yay!) A beautiful, honest and enlightening book on what it can be like to struggle with mental illness.

Now, some quotes.

Above everything else, tired of battling with my own mind.

When people say ‘weird’, what they really mean is ‘different’. And difference has never been a bad thing.

In other news, Cupid is an asshole.

‘I prefer modern slang myself’, I reply.
‘Word’, he says with a grin so glorious I feel sorry for anyone in the world who will never get to see it.

Beauty comes from how you treat people and how you behave.

‘You’re brave, did you know that?’
He must have me mistaken for someone else. ‘You have all these fears, your body endures all this pain and heartache, but you keep going. I think that’s really brave.’

Has anyone else read URTS yet? Has anyone ever had the horrible urge to throw a book *gasp* because of the dreaded love cures all? Don’t worry, you won’t want to do that with this book–I hope not, anyway. Have any good book recommendations surrounding mental health? 

Who You Gonna Call? Ghostbusters!

Excited! This was what I was feeling upon hearing that there would be a female cast of Ghostbusters, and not just because there was to be a female cast, but because one of said females was Melissa McCarthy and Chris Hemsworth would be joining the cast. Two of my favourite actors!

Overall I enjoyed it. The problem with looking forward to something so much is that you build it up in your head and when the time arrives to watch the movie–or read the book, whatever it is–I find it doesn’t always quite meet my expectations. I feel the movie improved as it went on and I very much liked it but I was left with this niggling voice in the back of my head saying that it wasn’t quite as amazing as I thought it would be. However, saying that, the only thing that I found really stuck out for me was that I felt some moments that were meant to be funny were a little over done. They bordered on a little too silly, like they were trying to be funny instead of just being funny, if that makes sense? Maybe it just wasn’t my kind of humour? I know Ghostbusters has a certain ‘silly’ element to it but these moments just didn’t work for me. There were many moments that were genuinely funny and did work.

I think I shall pen a list of what I loved…

  • The friendship between the characters was funny and felt real.
  • Melissa McCarthy was great as usual–as was everyone–but there’s a scene, which I won’t go into too much detail about, that ends up with Holtzmann hanging out of a window and McCarthys’ character changes during this scene… It’s hilarious! I can’t reveal anymore.
  • In amongst all the comedy there were real-life issues. Issues of friendships, people not believing in you, people trying to discredit you, and oh, you know, how best to save the world, amongst others.
  • Chris Hemsworth. This was a much different role for Hemsworth than others I’ve seen him play and although Kevin wasn’t my favourite character he’s played *cough Thor cough* I still laughed and liked Kevin. I was left wondering though, someone can’t be that dumb right? I don’t like to use the word ‘dumb’, but seriously… I liked the role reversal from the unintelligent, usually blond, female character. Sorry, Kevin, worst secretary ever.
  • Holtzmann’ fighting scene. This was my favourite Holtzmann scene! It. Was. So. Cool. Holtzmann kicked some ghost butt!
  • Some familiar faces. It was cool spotting the actors from the original movies. So funny seeing Bill Murray play this particular character.

Overall I really enjoyed the new Ghostbusters movie and wouldn’t mind seeing a sequel be made.

4 out of 5 stars.

Anyone been to see it yet? What did you think? Any Hemsworth fans out there? THOR! 

Fantasy Favourites Read-a-thon–Percy Jackson Favourites

Hello! Finally, my first post during the read-a-thon! It’s been going a little slower than I would like, but it’s about quality, not quantity, right? (I’m sure you’re all nodding your heads right now. It’s nice that we’re all in agreement haha.) Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan is the first book I’ve managed to finish and it was a really good book. I gave it four stars because I felt as though there was something missing that I couldn’t quite figure out–or maybe I was in a mood, it’s been one of those weeks–but it also had a comfortable feeling about it, if that makes sense? It was almost like settling in to read an old favourite but I’d never actually read it before this read-a-thon.

This post is about listing all my favourite things about the ‘Percy Jackson’ series (you can see Inge, from Of Wonderlands, post here). I have only read the first book and a little of the second book so far, so I’ll only be able to talk about my favourite things from them. Let the list begin!

  • The tone of the book. The books are told through Percy’s POV and I love how he tells you the story. It’s told with such humour and Riordan really engages the reader by using Percy as the narrator like this.
  • The friendship. It’s really sweet to see the friendships develop between the main characters and to watch them have each other’s back, even if they don’t always agree with each other–true friendship.
  • Mythology. Greek mythology–check. Chantelle happy–check. The inclusion of mythology and anything historic in books always makes me happy. I love seeing the various gods pop up and seeing the slightly different take each author has on the gods. Riordan, for example, used humour, which I love. Zeus in a pinstriped suit and Poseidon in shorts and a shirt covered in coconuts and parrots with a fisherman’s chair as his throne was a new version of the gods for me. I think I would have laughed at a giant Poseidon looking like that–it would be the total opposite of what I would be expecting.
  • Dionysus. Now, if you’ve read the books, you may be a little confused by this. Dionysus is a bit… Well, he’s a self-absorbed, arse. But, he’s a funny, self-absorbed, arse. I always seem to like the inclusion of a character whom isn’t really likeable but still makes you laugh. Dionysus, or Mr. D as he’s also known, is being punished–because he’s a brat–by his father in the form of having to be Camp Half-Blood Director. A job he does not enjoy.
  • Chapter titles. The chapter titles always caught me a little off guard. My reaction was often Huh? They make you laugh and want to continue reading to find out the meaning behind them. Some examples: “Three Old Ladies Knit the Socks of Death; Grover Unexpectedly Loses His Trousers; I Become Supreme Lord of the Bathroom.”
  • Tyson. I’ve just been introduced to Tyson in the sequel Sea of Monsters, and he is adorable. He has one-liner moments that make me burst out laughing.

The bull must’ve been as surprised as I was, because before it could unleash a second blast, Tyson balled his fists and slammed them into the bull’s face. ‘BAD COW!’

I think that’s it… *Bursts into song* And those are some of my favourite things… Are those the right lyrics?

Have you read this series? What are your favourite things about it? Who else likes mythology? What are some of your favourite books involving mythology?


Fairy Loot – Pirates!

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Hello! Today I will be gushing about all the amazing goodies that are in the Fairy Loot July box. If you have ordered the July box but haven’t received it yet then I wouldn’t scroll down any further, but I don’t need to tell you that. Prepare yourselves to be blown away by the awesomeness of this box.

The July box has the theme of Pirates and Power and I had to have it–I’m like 99 per cent sure I was a pirate in a past life haha. I always seem to know the answers to questions about pirates and have no idea how I know them, so that can only mean one thing, right? I was a pirate in a past life. Seems pretty logical to me. 😉

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One of the first items I saw was this cute tote bag from Alice in Wonderbookland. It says ‘I Ship it’ and you can never have too many tote bags, right?

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FUNKO POP! I love the Funko Pops and sadly only own one so far–Sam Winchester–so was thrilled to see a Funko key-ring. I have never watched Game of Thrones *gasp* or read the books but I haven’t been living under a rock so have heard of this character. She’s bad-ass, right? Well, even if she isn’t, I’m going to imagine her with a sword, kicking ass, flying atop a dragon. There’s got to be dragons!

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I’m imaging this bath bomb as a cannon ball haha. All good pirate ships have a cannon and now they can all smell nice–pirates can get a bit smelly. This as well as the lip balm, which smells like coconut, are from Geeky Clean. The colours of the bath bomb tie in with the ARC, which I’ll reveal soon. I have actually just discovered Geeky Clean through the last #FairyChat and have another bath bomb on its way to me, along with unicorn poop–don’t ask, haha, visit their website and all will become clear. I have already used the bath bomb and the smell was divine; so fun to see the colours.

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This is one of my favourite items from the box! A notebook from the British Museum. It is beautiful! I have no idea what I’m going to use it for but I will find something. I love looking at it.

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This is a new product from Behind the Pages, whom sells some beautiful bookmarks and bookish soap I’m dying to get my hands on. This is a bookmark which says ‘Currently Reading’ and you can colour it in. You can really make it your own, using whatever colour scheme you like, making it one of a kind.

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This box was made even more special–they’re all special though, each a special snowflake haha–because it had two books this time. One being an ARC. (I’ll talk about the ARC next.) The book above is Inherited by Freedom Matthews. This book has been on my radar so I’m glad I didn’t order it. It is a personalised, signed copy which came with a note from the author and publisher. It’s also an early limited edition, just for Fairy Loot customers. Ooh… Cool!

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This is an ARC of Frostblood by Elly Blake being published in January 2017. There were two different covers circulated and I got the Fireblood one. This is a book I hadn’t heard of yet. I’m excited to read it and see what it’s like. It’s so cool getting ARCs.

Another great box from Fairy Loot! Look forward to buying another in the future. Must go, I’m very busy. It’s a full-time job captaining a ship, you know. See you on the high seas.

Isn’t it so incredibly cool? Anyone else buy this box or any previous boxes? 

Book Review: A Curious Beginning

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Author: Deanna Raybourn
Published: Titan Books, 2015

Pages: 389
Genre: Historical Fiction, Mystery
Series: Veronica Speedwell #1

Read more about it Add it on Goodreads
5 out of 5 stars

Veronica Speedwell, believed orphan, was raised by her aunts, moving from place to place. When the last of her aunts passes away, a series of events unfold; starting with a break in at Wren Cottage and the appearance of a stranger whom seems to know a lot more about Veronicas’ past than she does, Veronica is about to get the shock of her life.

When I grow up I want to be Veronica Speedwell. Bold, intelligent, outspoken, thoughtful and adventurous are just some of Veronicas’ qualities. Here is a character whom refused to be what society expected of her and instead chose to be herself at every turn.

Mrs. Clutterthorpe, I can hardly think of any fate worse than becoming the mother of six. Unless perhaps it were plague, and even then I am persuaded a few disfiguring buboes and possible death would be preferable to motherhood.

Characterisation is always important to me–I must like the characters. Can I relate to any of these characters? Do they have depth? Am I rooting for them? These are some questions I ask myself and A Curious Beginning ticks them all. It was a joy to read from Veronicas’ POV and to meet the other characters such as Stoker and Lady Cordelia. Each character had a story–they had layers–and I was left wanting to delve deeper and learn more. The reader slowly gets to know the characters as more of their stories are revealed but there is still more to be discovered and this I think will be explored more in the next book–which I can’t wait to get my hands on. We learn as Veronica learns and, just like Veronica, I wish to know more about Stokers’ past.

Veronica and Stokers’ relationship was hilarious at times. Here are two people thrown together whom soon set out to solve a mystery and along the way you see their growing respect for one another and it was lovely–and entertaining–to watch.

The historical side I enjoyed, as I always do with Historical Fiction. It’s fun reading about historical figures in fictitious scenarios and I like seeing characters–especially in historical settings, this case being the 1800s–defy societal norms.

The reader is kept guessing and you start to feel like Sherlock Holmes–or Arcadia Brown, read the book and you’ll know what I’m talking about. However, I did work out the identity of Veronicas’ father *pats self on back*. (I should  clearly be a detective.)

A Curious Beginning is a fun, refreshing and riveting read. A gem of a book which sadly I had not heard of, but stumbled upon while on the publishers’ website and I am so glad I did. I look forward to going on many more adventures with Veronica and co. Excelsior! A new favourite!

Have you read A Curious Beginning? Do you like Historical and/or Mystery novels? Which ones? Do you like it when characters defy societal norms? I always cheer for them. This isn’t YA like most books I review but I wanted to spread the love for it.