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Victorious by Marie Force

Great blogger!

Romance Novels for the Beach

Well, well, well, it looks like our sexual dominant was finally let out to play.

What’s it About?

victorious

After surviving a traumatic event at age fifteen and the ensuing estrangement from her family, Natalie Bryant has worked for years to reinvent herself into the woman she is today—a happy teacher fresh out of college and enjoying her first winter in New York City with her faithful dog, Fluff, by her side. Natalie isn’t expecting her life to change completely during a routine stroll through Greenwich Village on a blustery January day. But when Fluff breaks loose and charges into a park, Natalie gives chase and crashes into her destiny. Only after Fluff bites and draws blood from the man who accidentally knocked Natalie down does she realize Fluff has bitten the biggest movie star in the world.

He has no business being enthralled by the gorgeous, young, innocent teacher…Natalie captivates…

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The Widow, Fiona Barton: Review

MURDER. SUSPICIONS. MYSTERY. thriller?

I was not made aware of this novel until I mentioned to my longest  closest best friend (and book buddy) that I had no book to read at the moment (SHOCK HORROR!!!).

The Widow is a Sunday Times Bestseller and has been pitted as the next BIG thriller after Girl On The Train (according to the Glamour quotation on the front of the book, although I don’t think I will take that for gospel). So it is safe to say my expectations were high. Warning, this review deals with heavy themes and nothing should be taken to deeply, in particular my references to crime cases from British History.

The story had a plot that follows the tragic story of a young girl, Bella Eliott who goes missing from her front garden and the aftermath that surrounds the investigation. The story follows different people’s views who are somehow connected  to the plot. Th leading investigating officer. A reporter. The Mother, the wife of the accused. Interestingly the narration jumps from past and present tense. In the present Bella Elliot’s ‘kidnapper’ Glen Taylor has just been run over by a bus. Starting from this point captures the readers interest and was pleasantly unexpected, which led me to believe that this novel was going to be different from the typical ‘Find Who Did It’ crime stories.

What struck me about this novel is Fiona Barton’s focus on telling the story from the view of not just the grieving mother or police officer who is on the case: but focus’s on the view of the reporter who befriends the accused’s wife and the accused’s wife herself. By exploring how the press can influence, and sometimes hinder, a crime investigation takes this story to a deeper and more darker level than I expected. This theme is one that  I believe resonates particularly with a British reader and echos big crime stories such as, dare I say it, The Madeline Mcann case. This case was heavily media covered with wild theories being  slung around which some would caused trouble for the investigation. It won’t be the first and it won’t be the last. Kate the reporter’s main objective is to get this story on the front page and treats the investigation is an extremely clinical manner. Kate’s dialogue is very matter of fact and rarely uses emotive language and does not seem to recognise Bella’s mother, as a grieving woman but as a 2D subject. There is rarely a chapter that goes by that she does not relate to characters in the framework of her news story. To me this is a clever technique by the author and reflects a negative view on how the press deal with personal and shocking stories seeing them as a selling tool instead of an event that destroys people’s lives.

So far so good, right? Wrong.

This novel was built up to me compared to Gone Girl, a deep and physiological detailed thriller which grips the reader page after page. All the ingredients were there. A mystery of a missing girl. A suspect, all be it dead, and his strange wife who is obsessed with having a family. Differing perspectives and the BIG issues of kidnap: a potential paedophile, surely this is a recipe for a great novel?

The only problem. I HAD GUESSED THE STORY WITHIN ABOUT FOUR CHAPTERS OF READING IT.

Now that’s not to say the plot is not a good one. The strong headed reporter who is interviewing Jean Taylor who is the killer’s wife. What could be wring with that?

*spoilers ahead*

Usually throughout mystery novels clues to the story’s twist are released slowly and skillfully so that a reader almost has to look back to see how they possibly missed a particular twist. However in Widow, the readers are meant to sympathise with Jean Taylor the wife of a murder, how could she have not known. The only problem with this is I knew she had some involvement almost the second that I started reading. Mainly due to the fact that the murder was dead, what I thought was a good twist at the beginning, a mystery where the perpetrator is not directly involved but that only left Jean. Yes, other suspects were presented but they were not fleshed out fully enough to be even considered.

FINAL VERDICT

This story has all the right elements a gripping and challenging plot line, exploring issues that many writers would not dare to tackle. Potential for greatness if it was not compared to such great novels. Classed as adult fiction the writing was far to simple, almost seems like it is more fitting for teens. 

Worth a read but I doubt I will be reading it again.

Out of ten? 4.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in life

Resolutions: Why do people mock them?

I am fed up of every year people on Social Media platforms digging each other out for writing their new years resolutions. Since when is it okay to be negative for people wanting to change or better something about themselves. So I am going to do it any way. Have these people thoguht that you write resolutions for yourself not for everyone else?

Its 2017 and instead of doing New Year Resolutions I think I will do a list of resolutions that I would like to keep and work on for the future in general.

  • Trying to update this blog more. I really enjoy writing but go through months without a post. This is something that is easier said than done.

 

  • Read more, much much more. Reading has always been a passion  of mine but day after day I seem to waste my time binge watching TV. (Not that I plan on doing this because I would only be fooling myself). But I am going to try and assign an hour a day to reading, whether it be in my work breaks, before bed or anything because I think why not do more of what you love?

 

  • SAVE. This is I think something that anyone can relate to. Save to see more of the world and make my money really count for something. Attempt to find the balance so I can have many memorable moment with my friends. Not just saving money but try to save time on not worrying over things that have a simple situation, save time overthinking about thinks that wont matter in the next couple of months or next year.

 

  • Try to keep healthy. I’m not talking about going on a strict diet but doign things that make me feel healthier in general and YES that may involve going to the gym, but whats wrong with that?!

 

  • Don’t take social media for gospel. People may be posting these pictures of perfect lives. But ti remember that life is not a competition and you never know what someone is going though on a day to day basis.
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Roald Dahl at 100: A Reading List

Longreads

When I was in elementary school in the eighties, being read to in class was such a treat — and something I really miss. The weekly reading hour that I looked forward to the most was when my favorite librarian came to read a few chapters from a Roald Dahl story. (And over the years, she read them all.) I could hardly wait to hear the next prank Mrs. Twit would play on Mr. Twit in The Twits. Another favorite, The Witches, remains one of the stories from my childhood that really opened me up to the magic of reading. Dahl’s whimsical yet macabre and darkly comic stories piqued my imagination for the first time in those years, and — being a shy, quiet kid — showed me that anything was possible.

September 13 is Roald Dahl’s birthday, and 2016 marks 100 years since his birth. To celebrate, here are seven stories about…

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Harry Potter: And The Cursed Child, Review.

In my opinion when reviewing Harry Potter and the Cursed Child it is important to review it as a separate entity to the Harry Potter franchise. Although, it is not completely possible to do this: as the play itself revisits many key aspects of the original novels, it is important to consider the different forms and realise that the difference between a play and a novel is vital to consider.

This has been a big issue as many people who are huge fans of the novels perhaps would expect the same level of detail in the play. When going to purchase the play myself I was wondering through Waterstones, when I saw a man with two young boys put a copy of the play back. He then asked me if I had seen the ‘book version’ of the play and became confused when I explained that there is not one. This struck a chord with me and made me worry that those who did not expect a play, would not enjoy or give it a go.

To read in a play format is very different to reading a novel, it is mostly set out in speech and has short scenes instead of long paragraphs. This to me is effective in Harry Potter as readers were immediately transported back into the land of wizards. “A busy and crowded station, full of people trying to get somewhere. Amongst the hustle and bustle, two large cages rattle on top of two laden trolleys.” For those seasoned Harry Potter fans we are instantly transported to platform nine and three quarters, and in terms of the play the scene is set in an effective way, as it creates the scene of a busy train station.

Focusing on Albus, the son of Harry Potter, the young boy struggles with living up to his fathers heroic reputation, the fact that he has been sorted into Slytherin, and feels like the outsider of his family.He struggles to fit in at Hogwarts and quickly becomes best friends with Scorpius; a Malfoy and rumoured son of the notorious Voldermort. Upon hearing that his dad let Cedric Diggory die, Albus convinces Scorpius to help him use a stolen Time Turner, which creates disastrous consequences and endangers everyone’s life as they know it, threatening to wipe it out completely.

The great elements about the play was the way that magic was written into the play. Something that would be fascinating to see when the play comes to life on stage. Several spells are used, such as the patronus charm, which creates real life animals on stage. There are talking books, characters jumping from one place to another, charms and epic fights between wizards. Although the stage directions did not say how these spells would be performed on stage it is made clear that this would be done and it would be eye-catching. This has transcended in the live stage play with reviews describing the on stage magic. Susannah Clap from The Guardian states: “Under Tiffany’s direction the spell-binding is utterly theatrical, drawing on sleight of hand and Victorian iions. There are engulfing transformations but also small moments of complete simplicity: Halloween lanterns propel themselves through the darkness; in one brilliantly quick flip of costume, kids in mufti become Hogwarts pupils.”

One captivating theme, and what the majority of act one seems to focus on is the growth sand strength of the friendship between Albus and Scorpius. To me, their friendship drives the play. According to the outside world the two should not get along because of who they are: a Potter and a Malfoy, but their innocence and the way they ignore the stigma attached to their names highlights a key theme of the play which i believe to be, the innocence of children and their views of the outside world.  What is also comforting about the boys friendship is that it echoes the strength of the friendship which Ron, Hermione and Harry built throughout the original series of books. As many people reading the play, this could perhaps give them the same feelings as they had when remembering reading the original Harry Potter series and create the same sense of magic and atmosphere to the reader.

Simple child-like language is used to discuss major problems with each other and they help each other through and it is clear that they address the world from a untainted view, and believe that situations can be fixed simply. One instance of this proves to be a major catalyst for the rest of the play. When Albus overhears that a Time Turner still exists  he resolves to fix it and states: “my father couldn’t save him-we can. We’re going to use a Time-Turner. We’re going to bring it back.” In this sentence it is clear that Albus believes that a situation can be fixed clearly and is a clear expression of a theme that runs throughout the play,which is children trying to live in their parent’s shadows, and struggling to create their own identity.

Overall, the play script is a fast-paced monumental success, as long as readers remember that they are reading a play and try to separate it from the original novels, which to me cannot be beaten! I look forward to one day to see the magic live on stage myself and can’t wait to see the next instalments!

 

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The Book Exchange

Quite often on Facebook there are lot of links such as ‘copy and paste this link otherwise…’ with some warning indicating that you will have seven years of bad luck if you don’t share. Due to this, I usually pass them without a second glance. Until yesterday.

One of my University friends put this up: “Calling all book lovers! We need at least 6 people to participate in a book exchange! You can be anywhere in the world. All you have to do is buy a book you love and send it to one person. You will receive approximately 36 books back. If you are interested, like this status and I will message you all the details. This is a really great project, please help to continue the chain 🙂‪#‎savetheculture‬.”

So I thought, why not. It sounded like an interesting challenge and if it can spread  awareness of reading then even better.

However, half of me thought that it wouldn’t actually work. This was until today until I received the modern classic The Shining by Stephen King. I sent the novel I love to the address I was given and I hope they enjoy it as much as I do. I can’t wait to start reading!

Posted in life

Young and Engaged.

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This is my first blog post about my personal life and what better way to start it off by writing about one of the biggest events in my life. My engagement and my fiancée. I am 22 years old and my partner is 24, we have been together for almost five years.

His proposal showed he knew me so well. I am an avid book lover and my all time favourite play is A Midsummer’s Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare. For a surprise for my birthday he took me to see this play in the London Shakespeare Globe theatre and in the interval he rushed me to the bank side, got down on one knee, with the waters from the river splashing on one side, and the Globe theatre on the other side, and of course I said yes!

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There are two major questions that people have asked me since my engagement was announced and those have been: ‘how does it feel?’ and ‘so when’s the wedding?’.

The answer to the first question is simple. I feel no different, some people may think that this is odd but this is simply because me and my boyfriend have always been firmly committed to each other, having almost three years of our relationship being long distance. So, although it may be ‘official’ now we have always known that we would be together.

However, the second question is a lot hard to answer. I have just finished University and currently looking for a graduate job, whilst my partner is a bit further on in his career. However,we are young and although I am sure we would love to start planning the wedding it is tough. We do not have our own place and are currently living with my parents.

I do not know whether it is just me, but I find it a struggle being a University graduate in this era. When I was in college I was advised: ‘go to University, you are sure to get a job after’. However I feel that I have come out of University, also having completed a six month Events and Marketing internship only to be told that I need at least a years experience for a trainee level job. Can someone please tell me how I am supposed to achieve this?!

So, between wanting to save for a house, on a part time wage whilst trying to have some type of social life, I guess the wedding I want will have to wait a while, but I can’t wait!

 

 

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Me Before You: A Discussion.

Instead of doing a typical review for this wonderful novel by JoJo Moyes I thought I would approach this differently by discussing questions that were raised. To anyone that has read this novel, and to those who haven’t, this is not your typical romance book but explores how to deal with life and love under the most extreme circumstances.

Louisa Clarke is a girl who is content with her simple, quiet life. She works in the local cafe, has athletic boyfriend and lives with her parents, but she is content with her life and does not have many ambitions. That is until her normal life is turned upside down when she looses her job, and begins to work for a quadriplegic man, somewhat reluctantly.

Will Traynor had it all, a top job in the city, the perfect model girlfriend, pretty with a good job and wealthy.  Rushing to work one day Will Traynor is caught up in an accident that leaves him in a wheelchair and changes the cause of his life forever.  The once thrill seeking Will finds himself in a wheelchair. He now feels joyless and can’t see any reason to continue to live in this world.

However  Lou Clarke bursts into his life like a burst of colour and the two people, who should have nothing in common soon change each other’s loves irrevocably.

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The quote above to me defines the essence of the novel and encapsulates what the author JoJo Moyes intends the reader to take from this novel.

There are several issues raised within the novel, the most important being the issue of euthanasia and the effects that it has on those who surround the individual who has decided to take this path to end their life.

In the novel Lou is unaware that she has been employed to effectively change Will’s mind on his impending trip to commit suicide in a clinic. The novel explores his family’s reactions to Will’s decision. His mother seems to be in a state of denial, and is adamant that Lou will be able to change his mind. Meanwhile, his father seems to distance himself in order to deal with it.

When she finds out that Will has decided to end is life Lou comes up with a plan to try change his mind and does this through planning different activities in order to show Will that life is worth living again.

It is clear that JoJo Moyes intended us to think deeply about the issues raised in the novel as she lists a set of reading group topics at the end of the novel, I will address one here:

Will’s right to die, and Lou’s determination to change his mind about exercising this right, is a theme that runs throughout the novel. How did you feel about Will’s decision in the end? Was it what you expected? Do you think the novel should have ended differently?- JoJo Moyes,

To me, as the novel unfolded it was clear that Will was suffering a lot of pain and had his mind set on ending his life. This may be controversial to say but the hopeless romantic in me was somewhat disappointed that Will went through with going to Switzerland. Perhaps this was because I was so caught up in Lou’s unrelenting will to succeed in keeping Will Traynor alive and the growing love between the two characters, that selfishly I wanted the two to have their ‘happily ever after’ and have a long lifetime of love and happiness together. However, in terms of the novel as a whole if this was to be the ending I think I would regard it as just another simple tale of romance and not value it as highly as I do now. As well as being about love Moyes deals with the difficult reality of living with quadriplegia and explores how for some living this way is not enough. Although perhaps because of how much I love the characters and their opposing, mis-matched personalities I could not think of a more suitable way to end the novel.

To view the trailer for the upcoming movie Me Before You please click below:

 

This movie is not to be missed and I can’t wait to see and write about how this compares to the book!

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Best Marvel Movie Yet? Civil War Review

KATA LOUISE

(This review will be spoiler filled, so be warned if you haven’t already watched)

Civil war is the third film in Captain America’s run of movies, and possibly the best to date. The film, based on 2006 comic series branding the same title, hit screens on April 29 (UK) and its popularity has been rising ever since. As a result of the hype I entered the cinema with

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Movie Review-Deadpool

 

Funny Moments: Most of the film

Overall Score: 5/5

I am not the biggest Marvel lover, but I assure you, this film is worth every second, so much so I am considering seeing it again. In cinema…and paying!

The only reason I went to watch Deadpool is because my boyfriend is a Marvel fanatic and no matter what the film was like he would surely exit the cinema claiming that the film was ‘THE GREATEST MARVEL OF ALL TIME!’Though for once when he said this I was inclined to agree with him: much to the shock of me, and to the delight of him.

For comic fans Deadpool was one of the most anticipated Marvel films ever. the movie was not even going to happen until Ryan Reynolds listened to the cries of fans who wished the film to exist.

The movie focuses around anti-hero Deadpool, who is diagnosed with terminal cancer, and when approached by a mysterious stranger, agrees to be ‘healed’. The results are disastrous and although he gains super hero powers he also gets a face like this…

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YEP. HORRIBLE.

Deadpool then sets off on a mission to find his creator to heal his face.

For those who know about Deadpool he is renowned for his hilarious remarks and one liners aimed at the bad guys. In the film his one liners are a work of brilliance and the comedy juxtaposed with serious issues such as cancer and the fact that he looses his girlfriend shouldn’t work. But it does, and even makes the film more accessible for those, like myself, who do not want to see a film full of stunts and funny remarks, but want to watch  a film with a plot in which we can meet the main character.

Al tough the films golden moment has to be the relationship between Deadpool and a taxi driver called Duphinder who he has a great relationship with. Jumping into a cab one day to go kill his arch enemy Francis and his henchmen Deapool meets Duphinder. The comedy comes from the fact that the taxi driver does not react to the fact that he has just picked up a man in a costume and continues to have a conversation with him and getting advice from Deadpool about what he should do to get rid of his love rival, in which Deadpool suggests he gets rid of him.

The next time we meet Duphinder he is again picking up Deadpool but this time when travelling a scream is heard from the boot. Duphinder has kidnapped his love rival. This scene is one of the funniest in the movie and the running gaga is cleverly written, much to my surprise.

Overall Verdict: This is Marvel’s best film yet. Classic one liners, mixed with a solid storyline and cleverly written gags. Not a film for the mature at heart, but I defy people who don’t usually care for Marvel films not to enjoy it!