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Posted in Writing

New Year Writing Goals 2019

Beautiful People’ is a project created by a book blog that I love (Paper Fury), aimed at writers. Every month, they post a list of ten questions for people to answer, designed to help you get to know their characters – their quirks, their flaws, their personality, and who they are. Occasionally, there are groups of questions aimed at the writers and their writing progress, rather than just what they’re writing about.

For this blog, I’m going to be answering a group of questions. I believe that this group is the January 2016 group (I updated the years in the questions so it fits in with the current time), and I’d love to see everyone else’s responses to these questions. I’ll put the complete list of questions at the very end of the blog.

Let’s begin!

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Posted in Reading, Review, Updates

What I Read In 2018

I’m still working on a post about my favourite books of 2018, so here I am instead to write a recap of the year! I’ve never done one of these end-of-year posts before but Goodreads has this thing where it shows you all your reading statistics for the year and I am a number nerd.

Reading wise, this year has been exciting. It’s been my most ambitious reading year to date, I’ve fallen in love with the stories of many new authors, and I’ve started getting back into reviewing books and reading advanced copies again. This year has also been pretty tough. My mental health has been the worst it’s ever been and I’ve fallen a bit out of love with writing, the one thing I’ve loved for a huge proportion of my life.

But this blog isn’t going to focus on that: it’s going to focus on all the good books I’ve read this year and how I suddenly need to buy a new bookshelf because I’ve filled my third one.

This post might be long. Let’s begin!

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Posted in Reading, Review

Underhyped YA Books of 2018 | #HypeYour5

This year, I’ve finally accepted that I truly do love hyped books. I’ve always been torn about this because not every book can be hugely hyped, and I can’t possibly read every book that came out this year even if I read more than the average person (probably?), and it’s frustrating knowing that so many good books have come out and not appeared on my feeds or in my recommendations at all. I’m so behind on all the books.

(I’ve just done some Googling – the average number of books each person reads a year is 12, but that’s inflated by avid readers. The most frequently reported number was 4 books per year.)

So, for this post, I’m going to talk about some of my favourite under-hyped books of 2018 with the #HypeYour5 tag. This was created by Mackenzi Lee on Instagram, and I will stick to genuinely underhyped books rather than books I love but are averagely hyped or else this post would be The Song of Achilles ten times.

 

A Thousand Perfect Notes by C. G. Drews

This is the debut novel of C.G. Drews, who has a blog called Paper Fury. If you’ve seen a few of my posts or any of my YouTube videos, you will know that I’m obsessed with her, and I’ve been dying for the chance to read her book. I read this book in one sitting – only a few hours. It’s the most unputdownable book I’ve read this year, full of thrills and feels, and this beautiful musical heart that mine is breaking for.

This book made me feel so much. Lots of it hurt me to the core, but the rest of it was so wonderfully real and made me welcome the pain. This is a book that makes me want to live and breathe, slightly ironic as I spent a majority of it holding my breath and just hurting for Beck. This may only be C.G. Drew’s debut novel, but I can’t wait to see where she goes with her next book. I am already a lifelong fan.

 

We Are Young by Cat Clarke

‘We Are Young’ is not a light book. The plot is heavily centred around death, a car accident, suicide, and mental health, along with scenes of abusive family relationships and a discussion of pressures on modern teenagers. And the characters are teenagers that actually behave like teenagers do, not shying away from the larger issues in the story (death, suicide, mental health) or the smaller ones, like drinking, drugs, and sexuality.

Having read ‘Undone’ a few years ago (a book that’s had a pretty secure spot as one of my favourite books of all time), I knew that Cat Clarke was an author to keep an eye out for. I enjoy how she doesn’t make a massive deal of LGBT+ representation and includes it casually, unlike many other YA authors. She also throws a lot of other major contemporary issues into her stories in a way that is neither romanticised or sugar-coated.

 

All These Beautiful Strangers by Elizabeth Klehfoth

Following Charlie Calloway at her boarding school, life gradually begin to turn serious as she’s offered the chance to join secret exclusive society. When things turn darker and a family secret is unexpectedly involved, the mystery needs to unravel for Charlie to know where she stands.

What caught me straight away was how this isn’t just Charlie’s story. The perspectives switch between her and her parents, something I’ve not seen done before. And when there’s a family mystery at stake, it only serves to build up tension as different sides of the story overtake each other, until they eventually fit. Initially, I greatly preferred reading the parent’s perspectives, but as things became more twisted and confused I couldn’t help turning the pages to discover how the two stories linked.

I didn’t believe in these people or their world for a second, but All These Beautiful Strangers was undeniably fun to read. Klehfoth really knows how to construct a twisty plot, how to fashion a cliffhanger that will have you turning the pages as fast as you can read them. It’s ridiculous, and it’s also ridiculously enjoyable.

 

Final Draft by Riley Redgate

I have never seen this book in an Instagram post, a book blog, or a YouTube video. It’s almost definitely out there somewhere, but I’ve never seen it.

This book is a treasure. It’s about Laila’s obsession with artistic perfection, and that’s a feeling I know very well. It’s about how the growth of her writing corresponds to her own personal growth. It’s about being shy and learning to expand horizons and branch out into ‘real life’ in a way that is interesting rather than overdone.

 

Words in Deep Blue by Cath Crowley

I read this book as an eARC from NetGalley back in March but as I was writing the review, I found out that it came out in 2016. I’m including it anyway as the version I read came out this year and it was somehow an advanced copy.

I still have no idea what this book is about, but the prose is what drew me in. The book is written in a way where I could clearly see the scenes I was reading as if they were on the big screen, and I hope someone makes this into a film. Hopefully, it’s a good film. The passion that the characters have for books is captivating, and the entire story felt like a love letter: hopeful and heart-breaking. Basically, I love this book a lot.

 

Have you read any of these? Tell me about your hidden gems of this year!

Posted in Maggie Stiefvater, Review

The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater [REVIEW]

I read this back in February but (ten months later) suddenly decided to review every book I’ve read this year. So, here I am.

I said this in my review for the first book, but I am still hopelessly in love with all of the Raven Boys. As someone who has finished reading the entire series before writing this review, I can say that Stiefvater’s foreshadowing is phenomenal.

The review…

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Posted in Maggie Stiefvater, Review

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater [REVIEW]

I read this back in January but (eleven months later) suddenly decided to review every book I’ve read this year. So, here I am.

I am hopeless in love with all of the Raven Boys, especially Ronan. As someone who has just finished reading the entire series before writing this review, I can say that Stiefvater is phenomenal at foreshadowing.

Before I get to some actual points, I remember reading this book and expecting it would revolve a lot more around the ghosts and dead people and curses and prophecies. The blurb was about seeing dead people at the graveyard and killing your true love with a kiss, so I expected more of the plot to revolve around those things, or that they’d hold a larger role in the book rather than just the opening scene and a few mentions throughout.

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Posted in Heart, Updates, Writing

NaNo 2018 Updates

Beautiful People’ is a project created by a book blog that I love (Paper Fury), aimed at writers. They used to post a list of ten questions for people to answer every month, designed to help you get to know their characters – their quirks, their flaws, their personality, and who they are. Occasionally, there are groups of questions aimed at the writers and their writing progress, rather than just what they’re writing about. In this case, it’s inspired by NaNoWriMo!

For this blog, I’m going to be answering a group of questions. I believe that this is the November 2016 group and I’d love to see everyone else’s responses to these questions. I’ll put the complete list of questions at the very end of the blog.

Let’s begin!

Continue reading “NaNo 2018 Updates”