Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Eurovision wrap up

Yes, friends, it's that time of year again! I spent Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights live tweeting up a storm. Live blogging on top of that was a little too much to ask, so as with last year you're getting a wrap up post instead.

Sadly, there wasn't a whole lot of crazy this year. There weren't even many songs that stand out as being particularly awful. There WERE a bunch that were just kind of...odd??...so we'll talk about those instead.

MY FAVOURITES

Guy Sebastian - Tonight Again (Australia)

Okay, I'll admit: I'm a little biased here. Yes, Australia (inexplicably) competed for the first time, and I absolutely loved Guy Sebastian's song.

Bojana Stamenov - Beauty Never Lies (Serbia)

This is FREAKING AMAZING. On stage costume changes, a super sparkly Adele-esque lead singer, a catchy tune, and fabulous lyrics. A big fat A+ from me.

Mans Zelmerlow - Heroes (Sweden)

This was the favourite, and there's a good reason why it won: those visuals are STUNNING. I was a little afraid that it wouldn't stand up without the visuals behind it, but I've been pleasantly surprised by how catchy it is with just the audio.

Loic Nottet - Rhythm Inside (Belgium)

In the semi-final, all I could focus on was the over the top lighting and how it feels like it belongs on the Orphan Black soundtrack. But by the time the final rolled around, I was really excited when they turned up on stage.

Nadav Guedj - Golden Boy (Israel)

It pains me to put this on this list. Because let's face it - this song is pretty terrible. But it's a TOTAL earworm that warrants chair dancing whenever you hear it. AND HIS SHOES!!!! What even. Dammit, Israel.

Nina Sublatti - Warrior (Georgia)

If anything at Eurovision screamed "girl power anthem", it's this. Fabulous.

THE ONES THAT ARE GROWING ON ME

Ann Sophie - Black Smoke (Germany)

I didn't love this in performance. But I've listened to it a few times since downloading the album, and I enjoy it more and more each time.

Electro Velvet - Still in Love With You (United Kingdom)

I think when I saw this on TV, I was so ridiculously overwhelmed by the set and the outfits and EVERYTHING LIGHTING UP that I couldn't really pay attention to the song. It's definitely better without the visuals.

Lisa Angell - N'oubliez Pas (France)

SBS added subtitles for the non-English songs, and it meant that I knew just how depressing this song really is. The beige-dressed Les Miserables wanna-bes at the end didn't help. But without the visuals and the subtitles, it's pretty good.

Maraaya - Here For You (Slovenia) 

Another one that suffered from distracting visuals. I mean, her headphones and the interpretive dancer with one leg glued to the floor playing an invisible violin? What the eff. But I think I've listened to it four times today, and it grows on me more each time.

Voltaj - De La Capat (Romania)

So this song is about kids who've been left behind when their parents moved internationally for work. Essentially, it's depression central. But it's a surprisingly good song. And, you know, it helps that it's in Romanian so you have no idea what the words are...

JUST STOP

BOGGIE - Wars for Nothing (Hungary)

Every time I hear this song, it sends me to sleep. Sorry not sorry.

Edurne - Amanecer (Spain)

Look, it's not a terrible song. But the staging just made it hilarious.

Elina Born and Stig Rästa - Goodbye to Yesterday (Estonia)

They stared at each other so intently when they were singing that I can't hear the song without seeing it in my head, and...yeah. Plus, the lyrics are kind of creepy...

Elnur Huseynov - Hour of the Wolf (Azerbaijan)

Dude. No. Ditch the interpretive dancers, and stop singing about wolves, yeah?

Genealogy - Face the Shadow (Armenia)

This whole thing came across as a coven of witches trying to recruit new members.

The Makemakes - I Am Yours (Austria)

WHAT DID THAT PIANO EVER DO TO YOU??? And what the hell is your guitarist wearing ohgod my eyes.

Trijntje Ooserhuis - Walk Along (The Netherlands)

Girl. You are wearing the love child of a bin bag and an academic gown. WHY.

Did you watch Eurovision this year? Who were your favourites?

K xx

Friday, May 22, 2015

Emma - Jane Austen

Totally not the edition that I read, but OH WELL.
I have a confession to make, friends. Emma is my least favourite Jane Austen book. By, like, a lot. There's just something about the character of Emma Woodhouse that perpetually rubs me up the wrong way. I felt this the first time I read the book way back in 1996, and unfortunately it still rings true today despite several rereads in the past 20 years. I'm aware that this is rather odd because Cher Horowitz is one of my favourite characters to ever grace the teen movie screen, but there you have it.

I can't even pinpoint exactly what it is about Emma that makes me dislike her so much. She means well, yes, but that doesn't fix the fact that she's often condescending and snobbish. She's so bored by her own life that she feels the need to meddle in the lives of others, with potentially disastrous circumstances. She pushes Harriet towards Mr. Elton, who's obviously never going to marry the daughter of nobody-in-particular, she's generally awful to Miss Bates, and she behaves horrifically towards Jane Fairfax time and time again.

Admittedly, she's not the only guilty party where this last one is concerned. Frank Churchill is equally abhorrent to me. I mean, DUDE. You're madly in love with Jane, but you're badmouthing her to Emma whenever all three of you are in the same room to hide the fact that you're madly in love? What the hell?! Nothing about that is okay.

Look, don't get me wrong. It's full of humour and wit - I think my favourite line that I came across was this: "Emma's very good opinion of Frank Churchill was a little shaken the following day, by hearing that he was gone off to London, merely to have his hair cut." It's utterly ridiculous and reminds the reader that if Frank Churchill lived in the twenty first century, he'd be an obnoxious hipster who trekked half way across the city on his fixed gear bike to get a bag of that stupid coffee that's been pooped out by a civet.

At the end of the day, it's Austen. And that means fabulous writing and fun characters and a happily ever after. But when I didn't like Emma herself, and I found Mr Knightly as interesting as watching paint dry, this book was never really going to be a hit with me...

Maybe I'll reread it AGAIN in a couple of years and find a new appreciation for it. But given that my meh-tastic feelings about this book have been around for nearly 20 years, I'm not so sure. Maybe I'll just stick to watching Clueless...

Have you read Emma? What did you think?

K xx

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Libraries are important, okay?

Um, hi. Eventually, I'll get a chance to breathe for more than five minutes and hopefully then I'll get around to telling you guys about the rest of my trip to England. You know, the one from last SEPTEMBER.

But for now, I wanted to share a video that I made last week. There was a lot of discussion in the Booktube community about libraries and whether they're still relevant in society now that we have Google and ebooks.

And obviously, being a librarian, I had a lot of thoughts on the topic.



I totally meant to post this last week when I posted it on Youtube. But...adulting is hard, yo.

What do you think? Are libraries still useful? Or should we replace them with something new?

K xx

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Currently...

Um. Hi. Remember me?

Yeah. There are times when I miss the days of unemployment, and blogging is a big part of that. Although given that I got my first full time pay cheque today, I can safely say that the money makes up for my lack of time to blog these days!!

So, rather than just disappear into a black hole due to lack of time and topics, I figured I'd do a "currently" post to give you guys a bit of an update on life in general...

Watching:
Essentially, the stuff I'm watching for Snark Squad - Dawson's Creek, Doctor Who, Supernatural - and occasional episodes of Criminal Minds and Bones. I desperately want to get back to watching Daredevil, but that means giving up something else, and...yeah. It just hasn't happened yet.

Listening to:
Shut Up and Dance by Walk the Moon is on INCREDIBLY high rotation. It's basically my time-to-start-my-90-minute-commute song, so I listen to it twice a day, minimum. And a hell of a lot of stuff that makes up Body Combat and Body Pump set lists, because I'm doing about three or four classes a week online.

Planning:
A trip to Dymocks tomorrow after work. WHEEEEEEEE, BOOKS!! Also planning a trip to Canberra during the July school holidays. Because, you know, the middle of winter is totally the best time to go to Canberra...

Thinking about:
How I should really be going to bed, but I really want to finish this episode of Criminal Minds. The fact that tomorrow's Friday. Little Miss A's birthday party on Saturday. How I really wish the vlog that's been uploading since 9pm would hurry up and finish so that I can go to bed when Criminal Minds ends.

Looking forward to:
Sleeping in on Saturday morning OMG IT WILL BE AMAZING. My little brother coming home for a visit at the end of the month. Orange Is the New Black season 3, although God knows when I'll have time to watch it. Going to Canberra, even though it's forever away.

Reading:
ALL THE THINGS, just for a change. I'm nearly done with Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel, and it's pretty damned fabulous. And this weekend, I'm planning on diving into the first volume of Matt Fraction's Hawkeye, which a friend very sweetly sent me for my birthday.

Making me happy:
The fact that I've lost over 6kg on the 12WBT. That it's casual clothes day at school tomorrow so I get to wear jeans to work. That there's a Lego game of Jurassic Park coming out. The forthcoming Jurassic World movie. The new display that I put up at work today. And my nightly hot chocolate. Sure, it's not as healthy as Greek yoghurt and a teaspoon of honey. But it's way too cold for yoghurt at the moment, so hot chocolate it is!

What's new with you guys?

K xx

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Review - A Court of Thorns and Roses


A Court of Thorns and Roses
Sarah J. Maas
2015
Bloomsbury Australia

3 stars


This book has been hype central on the book blogosphere since it was first announced last year, so I was ridiculously excited when I got an unsolicited ARC from Bloomsbury back in February. Unfortunately, I have a confession to make, you guys: it really didn't live up to the hype for me. 
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Don't get me wrong, I still enjoyed it a lot. And I feel like my attitude towards it was more about me than it was about the book?? But it just... It wasn't great. And it wasn't what I was expecting from a Sarah J. Maas book. 

This book tells the story of Feyre. She's strong and independent and quite a lot like Celaena Sardothian but with a family, you know? While out hunting for food one day, Feyre (pronounced Fay-ruh, apparently) shoots a wolf. Except it turns out that the wolf wasn't really a wolf so much as it was a faerie in disguise. All of that stuff was pretty great. It was fast paced, and full of interesting characters, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

But then things changed. As a result of killing the faerie, Feyre ends up getting kidnapped by the Fae and taken over the wall to their kingdom. So...she's a prisoner. But they feed her really well and give her pretty clothes to wear and are generally really nice to her?? All the people in the land she's taken to have fancy masks stuck to their faces, but that doesn't even remotely disguise how totally hot the guys are??? The story took a massive turn for the romantic, and while I liked the individual characters, I had zero fucks to give about the romantic subplot. It wasn't swoony, it wasn't cute, it wasn't hot. It was just...there, being slow paced and not very interesting. I know, this totally makes me a terrible fangirl. But it just wasn't my thing. 
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Somewhere along the way, Feyre finds herself facing a series of challenges. That, for me, was where the story finally picked up again. But that was about two thirds of the way through the book, so it was almost too little, too late. The last third of the book was action central, and given that I'd finally gotten into the story for real, the ending seemed all too sudden. 

Look, it's probably not entirely surprising that this wasn't a huge success with me. While I adore Sarah J. Maas' writing and her characters as a general rule, the Fae are basically my least favourite paranormal creature to read about. I bailed on the Sookie Stackhouse series when fairies turned up. I read a couple of Laurell K. Hamilton's Merry Gentry books, and they were kind of squicky. Same goes for Karen Marie Moning. So when I dove into this and found Fae waiting for me, I may have cried a little inside. 
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It's still got great characters and fabulous action scenes and I'll probably read the other books in the trilogy when they come out. But frankly? I'm a little afraid that it's going to turn out exactly like a Nora Roberts trilogy, where there's an overarching story but each individual book focuses on one of three sisters/cousins/best friends falling in love with a guy who's somehow involved in the overarching story. They fall into bed together more or less instantly, and get engaged after dating for like two weeks. 

So yeah. I feel terrible saying it. But Fae-centric + heavy on the romance = not really the book for me. 

Have you read it? What did you think??

K xx

Disclaimer: I received an unsolicited ARC from the publisher. A Court of Thorns and Roses is available now. 

Saturday, May 2, 2015

April reading wrap up

Okay, I'm going to need the year to stop going so fast. Because this is starting to get RIDICULOUS.

Books read: 29. But considering I started working full time part way through the month, it's not exactly surprising that it's less than the first three months of this year!
New vs rereads: 17 new books and 12 rereads. In my defence, I reread some enormous books this month!
Most read genre: Contemporary. Again. But paranormal and graphic novels weren't far behind!

Favourite book: Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli. It was seriously cute, and though there were things about it that were pretty gross (namely, anything to do with Martin), it was handled so thoughtfully and so well in the end that I couldn't help but give it five stars.
Least favourite book: Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead. I actually DNFed this one, which I've only done seven times in my life. I tried really REALLY hard to like it because I know so many people who think it's amazing. But...ugh. I didn't like the characters, the world made no sense, and I was bored. It just wasn't for me.
Favourite cover: There Will Be Lies by Nick Lake. Which is funny, because one of the first things my new boss said to me when I started was "Ugh, this cover is awful. Why would you make a book cover yellow??". I, for somewhat inexplicable reasons, really like it.


Diverse Books Project: Now that I have a full time job and less reading time, I feel like I'm a little bit behind the eight ball on this. I feel like I should start the next diverse book as soon as I close the one before it, just so that I don't end up behind schedule, but then I have so many other things to read and ARGH.

Still, I haven't missed a week yet, so I guess it's still going well!








In April, I ended up reading 4 graphic novels, 2 non-fiction books, and 23 novels. There are links to all my Goodreads reviews below!

Deadpool: Dead Head RedemptionSimon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
5 stars: Deadpool: Dead Head Redemption | Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda

Burial Rites
4.5 stars: Burial Rites

TimelineWe All Looked UpThe Royal WeThere Will Be LiesStormdancer (The Lotus War, #1)
4 stars: Timeline | We All Looked Up | The Royal We | There Will Be Lies | Turning Pointe | Second Position | Stormdancer

Made to Be Broken (Nadia Stafford #2)Captain Marvel, Vol. 2: DownRuin and Rising (The Grisha, #3)The Truth (Discworld, #25)Prudence (The Custard Protocol, #1)The Princess Bride
3.5 stars: Made to be Broken | Captain Marvel: Down | Ruin and Rising | The Truth | Prudence | The Princess Bride

For a Few Demons More (The Hollows, #5)The Plague RaceRelic (Pendergast, #1)Serenity: Better Days (Serenity, #2)Waking the Witch (Women of the Otherworld, #11)Omens (Cainsville, #1)The HistorianThe Dreadful Judgement: The True Story of the Great Fire of LondonTwitterature: The World's Greatest Books Retold Through Twitter
3 stars: For a Few Demons More | The Plague Race | Relic | Serenity: Better Days | Waking the Witch | Omens | The Historian | The Dreadful Judgement | Twitterature

Black Widow: Kiss or Kill
2.5 stars: Black Widow: Kiss or Kill

Love OverboardVampire Academy (Vampire Academy, #1)
2 stars: Love Overboard | Vampire Academy (DNF)

What did you read in April?

K xx

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Shirley - Charlotte Bronte



I knew literally nothing about this book before picking it up about a month ago. Except, you know, that it was Charlotte Bronte, and therefore certain to be pretty damned fabulous. And ultimately, I did really like the book. But it was a long, slow road to get there.

Shirley isn't so much the story of the titular character as it is the story of a small community in Yorkshire. The book opens with a group of characters who are ultimately quite insignificant to the story, and it can be a little confusing to spend the first few chapters focusing on characters that are essentially meaningless.

It's kind of a difficult book to review. At times, it very much reminded me of North and South. I mean, it's set in the north. A mill is involved. The mill owner clashes with his employees. One of the major female characters is Miss Helstone. You know, that place where Margaret Hale grew up and totally idolised in North and South? Yeah.

It wasn't necessarily a problem for me. I mean, I adore North and South. So something that felt a lot like North and South was always going to be a win for me. But I *did* spend chunks of time wondering whether Gaskell and Bronte's friendship meant that when Gaskell was influenced by Bronte's work when creating one of my favourite books...

Really, I think my biggest problem with it? Was that the blurb on my copy mentions that the titular Shirley - who, incidentally, is a FABULOUS character. She's strong and fierce and independent, and she's responsible for basically every woman who's ever been named Shirley - is in love with Robert's brother. Except that Robert's brother doesn't turn up until more than half way through the book. So I spent an awful lot of time being very confused about whether or not Robert's brother was actually going to turn up or whether the blurb was lying to me.

In short, it's full of glorious characters, and it's worth the effort even if it takes a little while to get your head around what's going on.

Twenty Classics Club books down, forty to go!

K xx

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Mysterious absences and what causes them

You may have noticed, friends, that I haven't been around these here parts as much as usual in the past few weeks.

The reasons behind this are threefold:

1. 12WBT
Sometimes I feel like exercising and cooking and exercising some more takes up all my time, and by the end of the day? I kind of just want to collapse in a heap and not use my brain.

2. VEDA
Yeah, I don't even know how this happened. I uploaded a video on April 1st, and then a bunch of my friends were all "WE'RE DOING VEDA!!" and I figured that I'd unintentionally started doing VEDA anyway, so I may as well keep going. Of course, given that I'm also on the Snark Squad channel every week for Segue Magic, this means I'm currently posting EIGHT videos a week. Hahahahaha ohgod. It's a lot of videos. And between shooting and editing and watching other people's videos? Yeah, it eats into what little time is left once I finish all that exercising and cooking nonsense.

(But, like, if you want to see me wibbling about books even more than usual, you should probably check out my VEDA videos...)

3. I GOT A FREAKING JOB!!!!!!!!!!
That's right, friends. I found the Holy Grail - a full time job in my field. Okay, so it's only a 12 month contract, but STILL. I start tomorrow morning, and I'm kiiiiiiiiiiiind of terrified because it's been forever since I've had to be a responsible adult on a full time basis. But it'll be FINE. In a terrifying but-I-already-don't-have-time-to-blog kind of a way.

And hey - I have an insanely long commute to get to work, so maybe if I can reach a point where my brain in capable of constructing sentences at like 7.30am, I'll write blog posts on my phone instead! Maybe. We'll see.

I'll get back into the swing of adulthood eventually, so this definitely isn't goodbye. Hell, VEDA will be over in another week and a bit, which will give me at least an extra hour a day to play with. But if I'm not around for a little while? That's why.

What's new with you guys?

K xx

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Any more and I'll have square eyes

I was originally planning on doing Top Ten Tuesday today, as per usual. But after spending the past hour looking for inspiring quotes and coming up with a whopping two possibilities, I decided that it wasn't worth spending the entire afternoon looking for others. And I've been talking about books a LOT at the moment anyway, so I figured I'd update you guys on what I've been watching lately. Because why the hell not.

Snark Squad stuff
We're getting towards the pointy end of series 2 of Doctor Who, and I've finally finished recapping season 3 of Supernatural (although I'm way ahead of schedule on that one at the moment). It's been a while since we got a Dawson's Creek recap up, but we're somewhere in the middle of season 3 with that one too.

Friday Night Lights
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I'm nearly done with season 5, but I've been putting off watching it because I'm not sure I want it to end... Although thankfully, it's on Netflix Australia when I inevitably feel the need to revisit Dillon.

Criminal Minds
Source
I'm half way through season 5, and I'm LOVING it. Although it's been on the backburner over the past week because I really can't watch it when I'm home alone or I rapidly become convinced that I'm going to be murdered.

Bones
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For some reason, when I put Criminal Minds on the backburner, I thought it would be a good idea to start rewatching Bones. And somehow, I'm already half way through season 2. I honestly don't know how this happened, but I'm so busy squeeing over Hodgins and Angela being adorable that I barely even notice the disgusting rotting corpses...

Daredevil
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I watched the first episode on Friday night and really enjoyed it. But then I spent the weekend catching up on Snark Squad stuff, and I haven't gotten around to watching any more yet. SOON. Because the opening credits are totally awesome, and I love the little nods to the Marvel movies, and I'm just really intrigued to see how it pans out, even though I don't care that much about Matt Murdock.

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
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I've watched the first two episodes of this, and to be honest? I'm not sure about it. It definitely has its funny moments, but there's also been quite a bit of stuff that's squicked me out. I was never a huge fan of Ellie Kemper on The Office, which probably isn't helping. Because it sort of feels like an entire show about Erin, except not... I feel like I should give it a few more episodes before I decide, but at this point? I'm just not sure...

How To Get Away With Murder
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I think I've seen the first four episodes of this?? I was watching it as it aired in Australia, and then I sort of...forgot about it. So now there are a bunch of episodes that I've missed and at least one is no longer on Channel 7's catch up TV site and I'm not sure if I care enough to keep watching?? Because I was enjoying it. But it also felt really repetitive, with the same shots of the bonfire in every single episode...

Brooklyn Nine Nine
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Sweet baby Jesus, I am in love with this show. The first season is on Netflix Australia, and I basically marathoned the entire thing. It's absolutely glorious from start to finish. Two of the three female characters are Latina. Two of the four major male characters are African-American, and one of those two is also gay. None of the characters ever feels like a stereotype, with the possible exceptions of Scully and Hitchcock, who are very much the old school, slightly inept cops. But they're there for comic relief more than anything. And it's kind of great to have the middle aged white men be the stereotypes for a change!

Basically, Brooklyn Nine Nine is a gift and it's quite possibly the funniest thing I've seen in years and I absolutely adore it and yes, I totally ship Jake and Amy. Because of reasons.

I really need to catch up on Castle and Elementary and Sleepy Hollow and Outlander and the current season of Supernatural. But there are only so many hours in the day, you know?

What are you watching at the moment? And should I keep watching Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt?? Tell meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!

K xx

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Review - We All Looked Up



We All Looked Up
Tommy Wallach
2015
Simon & Schuster

4 stars


The blogosphere has been all atwitter about this book for quite a while now, and with good reason. It's a fascinating and pretty unique concept, and I was super excited that I got my grubby little hands on an ARC. Thanks, Simon & Schuster!

Essentially, the gist of the story is that there's an asteroid heading for Earth. And there's a 66% chance that it will hit and wipe out the entire planet. And it's due to hit in two months. What would you do with your last two months?

The book follows the stories of four high school seniors: Peter, the popular basketball star. Eliza, the photographer with a bad reputation. Andy, the underachiever. And Anita, the brainy good girl with a dream of being a singer. The narrative flows between the four of them as their stories weave together during the last two months before the asteroid arrives. Where they were all expecting to graduate high school and move on to bigger and better things, now their futures are uncertain. 

Okay, first things first: I adore this cover. It's absolutely stunning, and it even includes the blue asteroid up there in the top left corner. I really enjoyed the changing narrative. Even when there were elements of the story that overlapped, each voice was unique and featured its own set of circumstances, complications and emotions.

On paper, Peter has the dream. But he's not happy. Eliza has a reputation she doesn't deserve and her father's dying of cancer. Andy wants to lose his virginity before the world ends and is kind of freaking out about his best friend's growing presence as a drug dealer. And Anita's father is ridiculously strict and doesn't think the end of the world is a reason to stop working. 

So the characters were all relatable and reading about their hopes and dreams over the last two months was bittersweet. I really enjoyed the writing, too. There were some beautiful passages, but I think my favourite was right near the beginning: 
"The best books, they don't talk about things you never thought about before. They talk about things you'd always thought about, but that you didn't think anyone else had thought about. You read them, and suddenly you're a little bit less alonein the world. You're part of this cosmic community of people who've thought about this thing, whatever it happens to be."  
(ARC, p. 11)

I think that quote actually sums up the book pretty well. I mean, it's a book about the end of the world. Who hasn't secretly devoted at least a little bit of time somewhere along the way to wondering what they'd do if the world were going to end tomorrow/in a week/in a month/in a year?

Personally, I'd eat cake for breakfast every day. And stop flossing. And demand that Sarah J. Maas release the remaining books in the Throne of Glass series immediately, even if they're still first drafts. And read everything on my TBR shelf.

Basically, this is an incredibly realistic book about the end of the world. Not everything is happy fun times. There's anarchy and looting and the authorities struggle to keep control of things. Which is FABULOUS because as if everyone's going to suddenly become peaceful BFFs when they find out that the world is ending. Please. Everything would go to shit in a heartbeat.

And that's what this book demonstrates. The loss of control. Everything you thought the future held being turned on its head. And learning that the little things everyone stresses over - getting a bad grade, for example - are totally and utterly meaningless in the grand scheme of things.

Does this sound like something you'd read?

K xx

Disclaimer: I received a free ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. We All Looked Up is available now.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

TTT - The Characters I'd Like to Check In With

Another Tuesday already? Must be time to talk about books and link up with the Broke and the Bookish!

The topic this week is all about the characters that we'd like to check back with and find out what happened to them after the book finished. And I have a LOT of these. But I limited myself to ten like a good child. 

1. Molly Gibson and Roger Hamley - Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell
There's a very simple reason why these two are right at the top of my list: ELIZABETH GASKELL VERY RUDELY WENT AND DIED WITHOUT FINISHING THE BOOK. Obviously, she intended for them to end up together, but I still need to knoooooooooooooooow. And find out what happens next. 

2. Literally every single character - The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
I mean, seriously. I will never be done. I need more. And not in those little bonus content-y things that Rowling posts on Pottermore for holidays. I NEED MORE BOOKS, DAMMIT. The longer the better. 

3. Rachel Watts and James Mycroft - The Every series by Ellie Marney
I want to check in on these two like five years down the road when they've finished university. Are they still investigating crimes? Helping the police? Have their own detective agency? Over their OMG-how-are-you-still-a-functioning-human-being PTSD yet? I might just go pester Ellie on Twitter until she tells me the answers... 

4. Fair Finley and Gomery Overbove - The Wilfair series by Alysia Gray Painter
Oh, my precious babies. I want to check in on them periodically for the rest of their lives and make sure they're doing okay. Alysia - my birthday is coming up. Feel free to write me a Finley/Overbove wedding. #justsaying

5. Becky Sharp - Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray
Becky's a total antihero, and she always manages to fall on her feet no matter how deep she's dug herself in. I'd love to check in with her somewhere down the track and find out what crazy schemes she's got in the works.

6. Aristotle and Dante - Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz
This book ends on such a fabulous note. But it also ends with a beginning. And I would LOVE to see what happens next for these two and how they handle it. 

7. Ellie Linton - The Tomorrow series and The Ellie Chronicles by John Marsden
I was pretty excited when John Marsden wrote The Ellie Chronicles, because I KNEW that Ellie's story wasn't over yet. But that series ended with a slightly ridiculous bombshell that I still don't know how to process. And I'd love to know what happens as a result of that bombshell. 

8. Eleanor Douglas and Park Sheridan - Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell
After that ending, how could you not want to check in on these two precious babies?? Fingers crossed Rowell will do a sneaky little cameo in a future book, like she did with Cath and Levi... 

9. Amy and Roger - Amy and Roger's Epic Detour by Morgan Matson
Again, this book ended with a beginning. And yes, we get a sneak peek/cameo thing of these two in Second Chance Summer, but it's not enough dammit! I need to know what happened in between this book and that cameo... 

10. Anne Elliot and Frederick Wentworth - Persuasion by Jane Austen
I know that most Austen fans would say that Lizzie and Darcy are the characters they most want to check in with. But for me? I figure there are so many adaptations and retellings and sequels out there that it's pretty easy to find something that fits your particular head canon for what happens next. But Persuasion? Not so much. Given that Wentworth is in the Royal Navy and it's inevitable that they'd spend a lot of time apart, I'd love to see how these characters handled things. 

What's on your list this week?

K xx

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

March reading wrap up

Okay, how is it April already? I AM NOT ON BOARD WITH HOW FAST THIS YEAR IS GOING SOMEONE MAKE IT STOP. But I digress. It's time to wrap up my March reading!

Books read: 35. What the hell?! I need a life. Someone find me a life immediately, because this is getting ridiculous.
New vs rereads: 17 new books vs 18 rereads. And considering I had a ton of new library books to get through, that's kind of surprising!
Most read genre: Continuing the trend, contemporary took out first place with 7 books. Fantasy and crime were in joint second with 5 books each.

Favourite book: I read a lot of fairly average books this month. The only one I rated above 4 stars was Perfect Fifths by Megan McCafferty, so I guess that was my favourite by default! (It was pretty damned perfect)
Least favourite book: Food for the Dead by Michael E. Bell. He's a folklorist, so from that perspective the writing made sense. But as a history book? It was kind of all over the place.
Favourite cover: I don't know what it is about it, but I really love the cover for The Shattering even though it's pretty standard.

Diverse Books Project: I'm a couple of weeks ahead of schedule at the moment, which is good because I've got an ARC that I desperately need to get to before I start on any more diverse books. Also, I need you guys to tell me which thumbnail you prefer - the ones with my face or the ones with just the book cover. I NEED TO KNOOOOOOOOOOOOW.











In March, I ended up reading 2 graphic novels, 4 non-fiction books, and 29 novels. There are links to all my Goodreads reviews below!

Perfect Fifths (Jessica Darling, #5)
4.5 star books: Perfect Fifths

Dash & Lily's Book of DaresMade For YouThe Night She DisappearedSaga, Volume 1 (Saga #1-6)The Eyre Affair (Thursday Next, #1)Disruption (Disruption, #1)Jingo (Discworld, #21)The Fear (The Enemy #3)The Lost World and Other Thrilling TalesCrocodile on the Sandbank (Amelia Peabody #1)Batavia's Graveyard: The True Story of the Mad Heretic Who Led History's Bloodiest MutinyThe ShatteringCorruption (Disruption, #2)One Good Turn
4 star books: Dash and Lily's Book of Dares | Made for You | The Night She Disappeared | Saga, Volume 1 | The Eyre Affair | Disruption | Jingo | The Fear | The Lost World and Other Thrilling Tales  | Crocodile on the Sandbank | Batavia's Graveyard | The Shattering | Corruption | One Good Turn

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Predators and Prey (Season 8, #5)The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar WaoDragon Keeper (Dragon Keeper #1)The Colour of Magic (Discworld, #1)HuntressOwls Well That Ends Well (Meg Langslow, #6)Afterworlds
3.5 star books: Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Predators and Prey | The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao | Dragon Keeper | The Colour of Magic | Huntress | Owls Well That Ends Well | Afterworlds

Full Tilt (Full #2)The Doctors' Plague: Germs, Childbed Fever, and the Strange Story of Ignac SemmelweisMoving Pictures (Discworld, #10)CongoBlack Order: A Sigma Force NovelHigh Five (Stephanie Plum, #5)Manhattan DreamingThe Wrong Way HomeDead to the World (Sookie Stackhouse, #4)
3 star books: Full Tilt | The Doctors' Plague: Germs, Childbed Fever, and the Strange Story of Ignac Semmelweis | Moving Pictures | Congo | Black Order | High Five | Manhattan Dreaming | The Wrong Way Home | Dead to the World

Fourth Comings (Jessica Darling, #4)Bestest. Ramadan. Ever.
2.5 star books: Fourth Comings | Bestest. Ramadan. Ever.

Food for the Dead: On the Trail of New England's VampiresThe Mysteries of Udolpho
2 star books: Food for the Dead: On the Trail of New England's Vampires | The Mysteries of Udolpho

Three months in, and I STILL haven't rated anything less than 2 stars. I guess this means I'm getting better at picking books?? Then again, I've only given 5 star ratings to three books this year, and one of those was a reread. So I'm clearly not getting better at picking OMG AMAZING books. Sigh.

What did you read in March?

K xx
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