Bloggers who Deserve More Attention #2

orangutan list

Hello all! A while back I did a post about bloggers I love who don’t get nearly as much attention as they deserve and I thought it would be fun to make an (irregular) thing out of it. Originally I thought it’d be great to nudge you to check out other people while I was away- buuut that didn’t end up happening (/I was busy and wasn’t blogging much of anything). Still- that’s no reason not to go ahead and do it now! Cos who doesn’t love discovering fantastic bloggers and reading awesome content? So without further ado, here’s part 2 of bloggers you should check out:

Lydia @22 is still young adult– Lydia’s reviews are just so beautiful that I always end up adding whatever book she’s talking about to my list. Not only is this blog a fantastic place to grow your tbr, I also find that if I have read the book, her reviews remind me why I loved it and make me all warm and fuzzy about it!

Cindy @Readctbooks– Cindy is one of those bloggers that captures the *need to fangirl* feeling! Loads of her reviews just make me so excited to pick up whatever she’s reading. I love her take on memes and fun updates-  her blog is such an entertaining place to be!

Ayunda Bhuwana– Ayunda is recently celebrating her bloggiversary and I must say she’s taking the blogosphere by storm! With her great takes on books and films, and just sharing her life and travels, she covers a lot of bases in an incredibly engaging way. I also love her slick design and am so glad she’s returned to blogging!

Sarah @Art Expedition– Sarah is one of the most talented people on this platform and her blog most certainly showcases this. Her paintings and photography are simply stunning and I really recommend you check it out- you’ll be in for a treat! She also writes very beautifully about why she chooses certain subjects and Art Expedition all round a great place to visit on the blogosphere!

Maddie @Of Reading and Random Things– the bookish discussions on this blog are always fascinating and get me thinking- which is why it’s worth checking her out! It’s always interesting to explore some of the topics she gets into- like which is better: books or video games? Or blogging vs vlogging? And if that’s not enough for you, there’s plenty of awesome book reviews and tags over there to get fulfil all your bookish needs!

The Bibliophile Empress– one of the things I like best about Kristyn is her thoughtful discussion posts- she eloquently puts forth her point of view and it’s really worthwhile to hear her out. I have to admit, as a classicist, her informative and educational mythology posts make me super excited as well!

Dragons & Zombies– not only does Sarah have excellent taste in books (I’m biased 😉 ) she also brings so much personality to her blog. I love that she covers so many different topics as well- like movies, travel and even wrestling! There’s really no other book blogger like her and I don’t know why you’re still reading this instead of going to check her out right now! 😉

Suziey @Of all the books in all the libraries– if you’re looking for varied book tastes then you’ve come to the right place! Suziey covers everything from Nancy Drew to contemporary romance to classics. Her reviews are always so in depth that you get an excellent idea of what to expect and whether to pick it up for yourself. Not to mention, she does great book hauls (which admittedly can be dangerous for us bookaholics to see 😉 ) Her blog often puts me in a great mood- especially after her upbeat tag about music today! Also, who doesn’t love the reference she’s making with her blog title?

Carolina @Fictionologyst– Carolina is one of the sweetest people I’ve met recently and is super friendly! Her personality comes across so well on her blog and I always enjoy reading her enthusiastic reviews and posts!!

Book Beach Bunny– Book Beach Bunny has such amazing reviews of TV, films and books! They’re honest and will give you the lowdown of what to add to your list- and perhaps also what to avoid. She’s really clear on what the book/film/show has going for it- and that’s really helpful to me! Plus, she has a very entertaining way of doing things and makes me laugh!

If you’re looking for more wonderful bloggers you need to look out for, feel free to check out:

Bloggers Who Deserve More Attention #1

Social Media Tag

Obviously there are loads more bloggers who deserve *all the attention*- so who do you think I should be looking out for? And do you know any of these bloggers? Will you be checking them out? Let me know in the comments!

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Required Reading: Books I read in High School- Inspired by Kristin Kraves

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Yeahhh I’ve been horrible at blogging this month! And I can’t blame school or anything like that, because I graduated years ago and only promise that I’ll be back to blogging properly soon! Since we are well into September though, I thought I might talk about the books that were my required reading way back when. While it may not be fresh in my memory, I still have plenty to say about all the books I studied and was totally inspired by the lovely Kristin Krave’s awesome post on the topic! (Also, dudes, her blog is jam packed with fantastic content and to top it all off is gorgeous to look at!)

the tempest

The Tempest– My first official go at a Shakespeare play in school… and I didn’t really like it. I blame the random person I met at my cousin’s drama college that said it was about “oh look at all the magic I can do… but I’m not gonna bother doing it now!” In fairness, that’s not the best summary of the play, though I still think of that every time I think of the play! Fortunately this wasn’t my only introduction to Shakespeare and had more to look forward to…

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Macbeth– this was my favourite for quite some time, because, let’s be honest, it’s probably the most entertaining of Shakespeare’s plays!

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Othello– I had pretty mixed feelings about Othello- while it is dramatic, well written and has one of the best villains of all time, it never did capture my attention the way some of the others did.

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Merchant of Venice– I’m fairly torn about my feelings for this one. Part of me doesn’t know why every school teacher likes to be edgy by choosing it. Even if it’s not as anti-Semitic as Jew of Malta, thanks to the “Hath not a Jew eyes” speech, the villain is still a racist stereotype. That said it does explore the nature of prejudice, given what a-holes everyone else in the play is. Still, while it’s interesting to study, I’ve never been overly keen on Merchant.

jane eyre

Jane Eyre– I’ll admit, I was pretty dorky and had already read this by the time it came up on the syllabus, which meant I got to be that annoying kid that said “oh look at the foreshadowing” every so often 😉

to kill a mockingbird

To Kill a Mockingbird– this should be on the syllabus in every school- not only is it one of the richest texts you can choose to study, but the story is also deeply impactful and has stayed with me all this time… okay admittedly I do also remember it really well because I reread it a lot in preparation for my exam- yet one of the best things about this book is that wasn’t a chore in the slightest!

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All My Sons– I have to admit, I don’t remember as much about this one, though I do recall finding it dramatic and being very invested in it.

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The Yellow Wallpaper– this was such a great book to be set- entertaining, complex and ridiculously short (let’s be real- who doesn’t want that for an exam text?). There are so many reasons why I’m always recommending this one on here- but just in case you haven’t read it, it’s out of copyright, so you can check it out for free on Project Gutenburg (it’ll only take you half an hour and is perfect pre-Halloween reading!)

pride and prejudice

Pride and Prejudice– it was actually thanks to this being put on the syllabus that I ended up loving it. I’d already picked this up a few years earlier and hadn’t been taken with it. If it hadn’t been for the fact that I knew I’d have to reread it, there’s a chance I’d have given up on Austen altogether. Instead, I gave her books another shot and now she’s one of my favourite authors.  But if you want to read more about how that came about you can check out this post.

tess of the d'urbervilles

Tess of the D’Urbervilles– I was pretty ecstatic to be set this, because I already loved Hardy. I know he can be hit or miss for readers- he just so happens to be a massive hit for me! I love the drama, emotional intensity and evocative landscapes. Tess is easily one of his best works, yet I was also happy to use it as a springboard to explore Hardy’s Wessex and other works.

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Rapture– this is the only poetry collection I’m including on here, cos most of them were from all different poets and compiled by the exam board. One poet that examiners all seem to love is Carol Ann Duffy…. because they hate children and want us all to suffer immensely. When I think of this poetry collection my brain still recoils with an UGH NO! I think of all the books on this list, this is the only one I truly DESPISE. Why? Because it’s pretentious, nicks all of the best lines from actually good poems and, contrary to what some critic I had to quote said, it did not “twist cliché into something new”, it was, quite simply, just clichéd.

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The Great Gatsbywhat Gatsby? Okay, if you can’t tell from my lame joke, I’m a fan. While this book isn’t long, there is a lot packed into it: tremendous characterisation, a layered story and exquisite prose.

Arkham cover D final

Picture of Dorian Gray– I chose this as part of an independent study, because obviously I already loved it- yet I will also say that this is always one of my go-tos of “a book that everyone will love”, because I feel like there’s something in it for everyone.

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Doctor Faustus– I chose this to go with Dorian Gray for the independent study and I found it incredibly inspiring- well in terms of writing, I’m not taking notes on how to live my life from a man that sold his soul to the devil!

never let me go

Never Let Me Go– my teacher suggested this and it was supposed to compliment the more anti-hero led works I’d chosen for my independent study, though I can’t say it was a lighter read. If anything, it was the most depressing of the bunch! That said, it was an excellent pick and my favourite Ishiguro to this day.

And that’s about it! What were your favourite books you studied in school? Which books did you hate? Let me know in the comments!

What to Read When You’re Feeling Super Lazy

Hello again!! Yes, I’m actually posting twice in a week- you’re not seeing things! Oh you thought you’d seen the last of me for this month? Well sorry to disappoint 😉 I wanted to do a great “here’s what I’ve been reading this summer guys!” post- but let’s be real, I’ve not actually been doing much reading. Instead, I thought I’d give you an idea of what I’ve been reading/to give myself an idea of what I *should* be reading.

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Labels on food packets– ermmm yeah this is one of the things I’m actually reading at the moment- to be fair, it’s helping me practice another language, so it’s not cos I’ve become a food nut and I’m not totally weird (okay I am a little weird but you knew that already 😉 )

Road signs– same reason as above- it’s practice! (also directions probably count here, but I think I’ve got enough boring things on this list).

Blog posts!– that way you can be productive…  but I’m not even slightly productive right now, so yeah, this is why this is also a “what I should be reading” post.

My own writing– I can’t even say this is editing- it’s more like I’m reading and rereading the same chapter out of frustration that I can’t get past it- what did I say about being unproductive?

Half of articles Google recommends– let’s be honest, I click on a lot of the articles Google sends me, whether I’m interested or not (I am weak), even though I feel like a lot of the topics Google only thinks I’m interested in cos I keep checking out the articles they send me. But because I’m not actually that bothered about them, I’ll usually read the headline and maybe skim the first couple of paragraphs. So yeah, this is super lazy reading.

Headlines of articles on topics I care about– which, again, are most Google recommendations. But the thing is, if I am genuinely interested in the topic (let’s face it, it’s probably book related) then I’m probably going to “save it for later”- and yes, I used quotes because, I’ll be real, I’m never going to read all those things later.

Two or three pages of a boring book– and yes, I deliberately chose to say a boring book, because obviously if it’s dull then I don’t have to get invested and I can quit it after a few pages… which is perfect for lazy reading (also, yes, I should probably just DNF said book).

So yeah, as you can probably tell my attention span is something like this right now…

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That’s all for now- what do you read when you’re feeling super lazy? What do you think I should be reading as well? Let me know in the comments!

Relaxing Reads!

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Recently I’ve felt the need for some serious down time. And obviously being a bookworm, I ALWAYS turn to books in my hour of need. I thought I’d share some of the book series I turn to when the going gets tough! Here’s a quick list:

Discworld– this is my go to whenever I just need to chill and have fun. These eccentric, witty and hilarious books never fail to put me in a good mood!

howl's moving castle

Howl’s moving castle– another wacky writer that I consider every time I’m looking for some fun has to be Diana Wynne Jones. And while I grew up more on the Crestomanci series, I’ve been trying more of the Howl’s Moving Castle series later. Honestly, if you need a break from anything heavy, I recommend either of these.

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Song of the Lioness– this is one of the few series on the list I haven’t been reading lately, but I used to take these on holiday, because they are such a fun read. They’re often described as “gateway to fantasy” books and I think that title’s pretty apt. If you’re looking for fantasy, but don’t want to read anything dark, grim or grimdark, this could do the trick!

Percy Jackson and the Olympians– this one is fairly new to me. Surprisingly (and despite recommendations *for years*) I didn’t start this till about a year ago. I thought it was too young for me so didn’t continue until recently when I realised how much I missed out on this as a teen- and how great it is when you just need to chill!

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Harry Potter– Good ol’ HP has been there for me through virtually every stage of my life. It’s like turning to a good friend in my hour of need. I know many of the kinks and turns in the story, and yet, like all the best friends, it never fails to surprise me.

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Anna and the French Kiss– I certainly appreciate a good contemporary companion novel series and this one really works for me- especially the last one in the series Isla and the Happily Ever After– which… well, swoon!

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Summers of the Sisterhood– since I’m talking contemporary, let’s be honest, it’s pretty hard to go wrong with The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants. As a contemporary series, it deals with a lot of issues like family, friendship and love- all with a charming deftness that will leave you feeling all warm and fuzzy inside (well, except for the last one- it’s my favourite, but it’s quite the change of tone- maybe save the last one for a different kind of mood!)

And that’s all for now- do you have any go-to books when you’re looking to relax? Let me know in the comment! I’d greatly appreciate all the recommendations!

My Bookish Dreams

Hello all! Hope you’re having a lovely Sunday! As it says in the title I’m gonna share some of my bookish dreams today- I’ll admit this list started rather sensibly annnd then went totally bananas- so, sorry if this isn’t the most realistic list! But here are some things I’ve always wanted because of books:

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castle in ruinsI Capture the Castle– I want to live in a castle tbh- even if it is crumbling and cold and financially ruinous. And I blame this book.

 

 

secret garden doorSecret Garden– I’d love to have my own secret garden, even if I am not remotely into gardening. Whatever, I love gardens, even if I am one of those can’t-touch-a-plant-without-killing-it kind of people. And obviously this would be completely remote and hidden away so I can read in peace 😉

chocolateChocolat– having a chocolate shop in some remote French town would be awesome (minus the suspicious townsfolk preferably). Sure, I have no skill when it comes to baking/making confectionaries and I would most certainly eat all of my profits, but it’d be a delectable experience anyway.

 

hidden libraryShadow of the Wind– I want to go to the Cemetery of Forgotten books in Barcelona (okay this is not a real place, but we can pretend 😉 ) and pick out a forgotten masterpiece. Hopefully no murderous nutjob will pursue me for my choice…

 

thudThud!- I have actually played the game Thud- but I’d really like to own my own set one day (I think this is the most plausible thing on the list by a long shot). I’m as lousy at this as I am at chess- but who cares? It’d be such a fun thing to have!

 

gatsbyThe Great Gatsby– I’d love to go to a Gatsby style party. I wouldn’t want to throw said party, cos, hehe, that’s not me, but I think it would be a once in a lifetime experience to go to a shebang worthy of the roaring 20s!

 

orangutan and ocelot

For those wondering what my daemon would be: it’s an ocelot

The Northern Lights– moving on to the slightly less realistic, I want a daemon. My very own basically-represents-my-soul animal companion would do very nicely for a sort-of pet.

 

 

 

 

time turnerHarry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban– I could do with a time turner- in fact this is a very high priority for me right now- so I’d ask if you know any wizards that can hook me up, but unfortunately Harry & co smashed them all in book 5.

 

narnia cupboardChronicles of Narnia– I’d like to go into my cupboard one day and find Narnia. Oh dear, this list started off so sensibly, but if I’m being honest, I used to regularly check cupboards as a child to see if a doorway to any other realm would turn up. I must not have been looking in the right cupboards and I still live in hope 😜 Since we’re talking childhood dreams…

peter pan robin williams flyingPeter Pan– one day I will learn to fly like Peter Pan! I did also try this as a kid by jumping off the bed- it did not work as I was armed only with happy thoughts and no fairy dust *sigh*. Otherwise, it totally would have worked 😜

 

supervillain orangutanRenegades– I think it’d be fun to be a vigilante (before they get control of a city and start meting out “just” laws). I’d get to wear a funky costume and save people. Nuff said!

 

 

 

mr knightleyEmma– and last but not least, the silliest thing on this list that would make Jane Austen blush, one Mr Knightley. I know most people would pick Darcy, but you can have him, in terms of bookish boyfriends, my heart will always belong to this respectable gentleman 😉

 

Okay- so be honest- what did you think of my list? On a scale of one to bananas…? And more importantly, what would your bookish dreams be? Let me know in the comments!

What comes after Harry Potter?

Well, a horrible book slump, that’s what.

slumps suck

In case you didn’t know, I was doing a series of Harry Potter rereads that came to an end yesterday. Now obviously, I read the books last month, so I can tell you that I had to employ some *serious* strategies to get over the worst slump I’ve had in a while (topped only by the one I’m in now, but we’ll get to that later). I gave it some thought and came up with some recommendations of what you can read after you’ve finished reading/re-reading Harry Potter:

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gulag archipelagoThat absolutely grim non fic book– you know, the one that you know that will depress the hell out of you- but hey, at least you know it’ll kill your HP buzz and you won’t be thinking about *those traumatic deaths* anymore.

 

 

war and peaceA very sophisticated classic– you’ll be thinking too hard to give a moment’s pause on the problem of WHY AM I NOT A WIZARD GAH!?!

 

 

 

percy jackson lightning thiefMore Middle Grade– sure it won’t compare, but it’ll give your frazzled *I’m just not over Dumbledore’s past* brain a chance to chill out.

 

 

 

the fill in bfLots and lots of contemporary filler– especially since this isn’t my favourite of the HP universe (someone once described it as a weird sexless world, and while I wouldn’t go that far, I do think that romance is the one thing HP is lacking a little, so you stock up on that romance!)

 

 

strange the dreamerThat AMAZING book you know you’ll love– preferable the one you have been saving for a special occasion- guess what? The special occasion has arrived!

 

 

Okay, that’s all I could come up with! It’s certainly not an easy question, even this long since the last book was published. So I want to ask you- what do you think comes after Harry Potter?

Bloggers who Deserve more Attention

Hello! I wanted to do this post a few days ago, in honour of my 3 year bloggiversary, but it’s been a crazy week so I’ve not been blogging nearly as much as I wanted to (annnd I’m totally not breaking my new rule of not apologising all the time, just explaining a little 😉 )

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Anyway, I mentioned the other day that I owe a great deal of thanks to the lovely Zezee for basically discovering me as a blogger! If you’re not following her already- what the hell are you doing!? In honour of what she did for me, I decided to share some people’s blogs. Now obviously *everyone* on the blogosphere deserves more attention, but that would’ve taken a bit too long, and while there’s loads of blogs I talk about a lot, and who you should already be following, I think there’s a few that don’t get nearly as much attention. So without further ado, here’s some bloggers you should definitely check out!

Fran Laniado– so Fran is great at keeping up with memes, but that’s not why I love her blog! The best thing about Fran is that she reads so many different books that not a lot of other bloggers are talking about. This makes her lists very thoughtful and stands out a lot. If you’re really interested in classics and literary fiction, like I am, then I highly recommend checking her out! Plus she’s highly intelligent and has some great writing discussions that I very much enjoy.

Cameron Graham @Here be Wyverns– not only is Cameron *super smart* and his content realllly detailed and interesting (really recommend his discussions on mythology– it’s phenomenal!), but I gotta say, he frequently makes me laugh and is absolutely hilarious. So head on over there and say hi to his dragon Ivan!

Lucinda is reading Lucinda is just lovely, sweet totally approachable, really funny and very clever. Her review style is always so varied and tailored specifically for the book! Every review is unique and interesting. Plus she reads a great variety of books so you can’t go wrong! Plus, she agrees with me about not liking Gormenghast, so she must be amazing if she’s on the same page as me there 😉

K L Kranes– I had to include her just for how *awesome* her discussion pieces are- seriously, if you’ve not checked out some of those- you are seriously missing out! They’re really thought-provoking! She talks about writing, reading, grammar, tv, travelling and tons of other things.

Eva O’Reilly– Eva has done something on her blog I could never do: a lot of daily content! I am always so impressed when people blog every day or nearly every day, but what makes Eva more impressive is that her content is often profound and strikes a relatable cord for any writers out there! She talks a lot about writing, life, and just check her out okay!?

Joelendil’s Kingdom of Books– I really love the type of books that Joelendil reviews (a lot of classics and SFF!) and he always gives such a clear picture of his impressions and what to expect. Plus, there’s the added bonus of his reviewing  the type of books that aren’t the run of the mill books you see on the blogosphere.

Lost Art of Reading– speaking of reviews, I had to include Lost Art of Reading on this list, simply because she always writes such top quality, thorough reviews- particularly on books you might never have heard of otherwise. Plus, she’s really friendly and great to chat to!

Simply a book drunkard– Milou does such a fantastic variety of content, it’s hard to pin down a single reason why you should go follow her! Her reading is eclectic and if you’re into sci fi/fantasy and graphic novels in particular, then she’s definitely someone to check out 😀

Wordaholics Anonymous– I really can’t mention Milou without giving a shoutout to her other half as well! I highly recommend you check out both regardless, because he does really interesting reviews on fantasy books, has cool music taste and shares some of his awesome poetry.

Angelica @Dreaming of Fiction– Angelica runs a really varied blog and I think this comes from the fact she’s completely unique on the blogosphere- I mean, I defy you to find another geeky opera singer in training! So her content is a mixture and I really enjoy reading about her bookish and music tastes!

Bookwyrm Knits– if you’re into discussions, reviews and weekly memes, then you’ve definitely got to hop on over to Bookwyrm Knits (and I know most of you answered yes to all of those 😉 ) Plus, she also shares her knitting WIP, and I know from my Reverse Q&A that a fair number of you are knitters, so you should definitely have a look! 😉

And that’s all for now! And because I want to spread the love around a bit, I think it would be great if you could share some more bloggers who deserve more attention in the comments!