Saturday, 4 July 2020

Where have I been

Hello Readers,

I’m guessing you noticed the media silence. Unless you follow me on Instagram I doubt you have any idea what’s happened so here we go.

Guys I got really sick. I went from ear infection to meningitis plus worse scare to just two bits of my body falling out. That’s a lot to deal within a week of doctors’ appointments I say week it was 5 days. So buckle in and I will explain who what where and why. I would also like to say aside from the body aches it was a lot emotionally and physically in such a short amount of time. 

I’m sure I mentioned I had a monster panic attack and I was just getting to my normal after it. I then decided I would grow some ovarian cysts cause what else was I going to do in lockdown. Well just as they started to settle down, I got a BEAST of an earache.

Thinking it was nothing to be worried about I carried on well after 5 days I went to the doctors. I was seen in person while wearing appropriate PPE and was told I had two bulging eardrums which meant I might have double inner ear infection. I was prescribed 5 day’s worth of antibiotics and told to ring back on day four if nothing had improved. Fast forward to day four I felt worse and I was walking into the door frames (Fun right) and I was so dizzy any movement of my head was disorientating. Also, the headache across the back of my head was killer.

I rang my doctors like sorry the antibiotics haven’t worked which then lead to a video chat with my new doctor. He thought it might be mastoiditis which is nasty. Here’s a quick rundown given the time frame of eight days he was worried as if left untreated, mastoiditis can cause some serious problems, including hearing loss, blood clot, meningitis, or a brain abscess. So, I was told try two of the higher strength antibiotics and I felt no better to go to the hospital no ifs no buts.

I didn’t feel any better so on Wednesday I put my mask on and went to the hospital by this point my neck had gone stiff my dizziness was worse. Everyone was really nice and even with the current pandemic and heat. While in the hospital my mouth decided it was going to cover itself in blister (I know great timing). Once the ball got rolling, I was given a three-step plan before we got to the scary stuff. Thankfully we worked it on the step before things got stabby.  Also, side note my GP rang to make sure I had followed instructions, I do listen sometime.

Turns out my temporomandibular joint and ear decided to have a falling out and a slagging match. We don’t know who upset who but they majorly fell out. The blister was a sign that my body was starting to struggle to fight. Which meant I was given a list of immune boosters and vitamins to take as well as carrying on my course of antibiotics.

Here we are almost two weeks later I can move my head again and I’ve stopped walking into things. Walking into things has been replaced by late mornings, midday naps and a lot of vitamins in the morning but it’s a better place and I like here compared to where I was. Even while writing this I'm here like I need to be nicer myself and my body. I need to let it recover properly and look after it better not like I'm mean to it. Yes I did get myself some sunflowers.

Well, that is that my dear Reader…

Lx
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Thursday, 18 June 2020

Game Review: Minion Masters

Hello Readers,

Today I have a game review for you. I came across Minion Masters while looking for something to do with my cousin (ITWGNAP) in lockdown and here we are over 45+ hours later. I know the shock and the horror of me reviews a recent game I know!

This is one of them games that looks deceptively simple but has quite a bit of strategic depth and this game remarkably fast-paced. Minion Masters is suited for short game-play sessions that evolve into hours spent trying to find the best cards for your fighting style.

This game is honestly the definition of addictive and challenging. You are the Master who summons their minions with mana (refills overtime at the bottom) to do battle across a field with two bridges. Minions can claim the bridges and destroy the rival Master. Claiming bridges earns you XP and allows you to level up quicker, earning unique perks based on your chosen Master (More on that in a minute).

Timing is everything and setting up the perfect combos to help you or your team win. The object is to bring your opponent’s health down to 0 by using your minions who cross a bridge to do battle with the opponent.  You get to choose your master and each one has its own special perks for this post I’m going to focus on the two ITWGNAP and I play most.

I prefer playing as Apep because I love his abilities. Apep the Serpent God has the ability to gain free cards and make himself invulnerable with a totem honouring himself cause self-care and love guys! Also, his basic attack is nothing to frown upon Spits acid at enemies to deal 30 damage every 2.5 sec. however, for each card that costs 5 or more in his hand, Apep gains +35% attack speed. Apep perks are Gift of the Serpent God which puts a random 2 mana Minion or Building card in Apep's deck to use for free. Shield Totem While the Shield Totem is alive Apep is immune to damage again another freebie. His final perk is Greater Gift of the Serpent God which again put a random 4 mana Minion or Building card in Apep's deck to use for free.

Whereas ITWGNAP prefers playing Morellia. Morellia is a versatile spellcaster and I am glad when she is on my side not so cute to go against because she can call her pet dragon to her aid. Morellia draws upon her Book of the Dead to grant her mastery over accursed magic. Her perks are Book of the Dead, Unholy Bargain and Queen's Dragon.

There are multiple ways to play this game

  • Play online in teams or solo
  • Invite your friends to a vs or team game
  • Mayhem Challenge
  • BUUUUBBLES!!!
  • Challenge
  • Adventure

Overall, we have both really enjoyed this game and have gotten our friends to download it and rotate teams during a gaming session. Its been a great way to stay connected during the lockdown and is now our go-to game.  Also, we have a wide range of other names that we use instead of the correct ones. Anyone who has played feel free to guess the following cards

  • Whirlywooo!
  • Puff the magic dragon
  • Funky Monkey
  • Present/Surprise 
  • Suck a bus!
  • Trashcan
  • Triplets! 
  • Splat
  • Jiggy Puff
  • Charge!!!!

Lx
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Thursday, 11 June 2020

My well-loved books

Hello Readers,

Today I thought I would share with you my well-loved books. These are the books that have been grown with me and I have reread countless times. One is extra special though as I am the book, second owner. If you read this post and you get a need to go find your well-loved books please tag me on Twitter and Instagram, I would love to see what you find. For the titles, I have added a link to Goodreads so you can read the synopsis or add it to your wish list.

 

The Butterfly Lion by Michael Morpurgo

This is one of the books that has grown with me and I have had it since year 6 (10/11 years old). I wish I had taken better care of it as it is signed by Michael and I’ve written my name all over it, obviously. I say that I think I’m being a little harsh as you can see the cover and the pages don’t look too bad considering the book is 16 years old.

Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden

I got this book while on holiday when I was 15 years old. I was on holiday and I really can’t remember if kindles were a thing back then but I read everything I took with me.  Well, I met a lovely Canadian and she gave me Memoirs of a Geisha the day she left. As you can tell it's well-loved the protective plastic is peeling off, the pages are a little dog eared and there is a little bit of water damage on the back. I’ll be honest I think I dropped it by the pool.

Marked by P. C. Cast and Kristin Cast

This whole series is pretty beat up if I’m honest. This series is the one I recommend at school and the first two maybe three books got passed around my friendship group a lot. Its is a toss-up between the spine on Marked vs the next book on the list who is more worn. Thankfully I haven’t lost any pages yet. This series is beyond underrated and I am going to be shouting about it more the characters are diverse as hell, the story is wholesome and the books have aged well. I am also still missing book three it's fine. Oh! I’ve only just realised it says not suitable for young readers on the back oooops I started reading these when I was 16.   

True Blood Omnibus (Dead until dark, Living dead inDallas and Club dead) by Charlaine Harris

This is three books in one so clearly, it’s a chunky monkey and possibly why the spine is so damaged. Also, it feathers out at the top I think this is due to being squished in with its friends. You can also see that the front half is more loved than the back that’s due to me getting the second and third book as birthday presents.

My Terry Pratchett Collection

I have read through two maybe even three copies of my favourite Pratchett books. I have had to replace and re-replace Reaper Man, The Fifth Elephant, The Colour of Magic, Going Postal and Hogfather. I mean to the point I was taping the pages back in. I have them on eBook and audiobook now but I missed physically having them so I have them in the Gollancz stupidly pretty covers that I haven’t touched and they just sit pretty on the shelf (Don’t be judgy!).

Let me know your well-loved books I really want to see them or any books you have a story behind getting

L x

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Monday, 8 June 2020

Let's Talk About.... My Beliefs

Hello Readers,

So, this post is coming from the bottom of my heart and my brain getting back to itself after a bad MH Blip. While I was showing support for Black Lives Matters, I got a lovely set of messages in my social media inboxes telling me to “Stay in my lane” Hun what lane is that?

Obviously, I asked them what they meant and apparently, I can’t support more than once cause. I know how dare I, I’m sorry. Actually, no you and your narrowminded teaspoon-sized brain can have a time out.  You do you not get to dictate to me who and how I support causes. It doesn’t take much to know the difference between right and wrong.

One of my core beliefs is being kind and not a bully. I will support Black Lives Matter because this shouldn’t be an issue in 2020. I will support LGBT rights because what right do you have telling people they are wrong for who they love and they don’t exist. I will support Trans rights until my family and friends are safe. I will support whatever charity I like! There is no limit on what I see is right and who I chose to support.

Being silent it deadly, silence kills. Being unheard is dangerous. People need to realise that being quiet is almost as dangerous and holding a loaded gun. I do not condone any violence but it would be ignorant of me to ignore the action of the suffragettes and others who have paved the way for me to have my freedoms.

On the matter of damaging being done with every protest you get the trouble makers I remember watching the student riots and seeing people who had nothing to do with the protest smashing everything it happened then it happened now. While in this vain remember the damage that gets done when England does well or bad in football bus stops, ambulances, police horses and police cars get damaged where was your cry of outrage then. I’ve seen on social media people hijacking hashtags to flip the meaning and creating groups to go cause this damage. It’s a basic strategy, corrupt the original meaning and turn the narration. 

Also, quick side note while I’m on my soapbox from what I’ve seen shopping. If you are going in to purely be a Karen stop! shop workers have worked all of the lockdown with little to no protection while getting an increased level of abuse. Also, don’t moan at them and blame the shop because grown-ass adults can’t follow lines and government guidelines that’s on you.

On that matter, people moaning the protests are going to cause an increase in COVID cases. People can’t follow arrows or the 2m guides in a supermarket. People are still picking things up and putting them back on the shelf hello cross-contamination. Pulling masks down to speak or taking them off before they leave the shop.  Leaving gloves in the trolly or just in the shop. People have been to the beach. People did a street party. People have blatantly been ignoring lockdown don’t just blame people protesting.

L x

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Monday, 1 June 2020

Let's talk about.... LittleLifts

Hello Readers,

Today marks the start of Mother Goose’s and I LittleLift challenge. After I did my video announcing that we were doing the challenge at 20,000 steps a day, I was met with messages of worry and concern. With both, our jobs Mother Goose and I can do anywhere between 16,000 – 22,000 steps in a workday. Do you not agree with me it's slightly unfair for us to only challenge each other 2,000 steps a day? On our days off it’s the real challenge we have agreed to try hit 7,000 – 10,000 steps.  I also have a sponsor page no pressure to donate but if you wouldn’t mind here’s a link.

So now all boring bits out the way let’s talk about Little Lifts. I came across LittleLifts on Twitter at the beginning of the year and I can 100% get behind what they are doing. So LittleLifts are what they say on the box a little lift.  They provide practical and emotional support to women who face chemotherapy treatment for breast cancer, giving them a carefully created box at the start of or during their treatment that contains little sparks of joy during a dark time.

If you’ve followed me for a while you know how close breast cancer charities are to my heart. I remember when my Grandma was diagnosed with breast cancer her friends sent her little cheer up packages including cards, funny photos and little gifts. I still remember her waiting by the door when she knew one was coming. I would like to imagine that’s how people are knowing that LittleLifts has their back.

So, what is in the LittleLifts box I hear you cry for a full list click here. Here’s a couple of things I picked out

·         Face and Body Lotion

·         Lip Balm

·         Chewing Gum

·         Chilli Oil and Mixed Herbs

·         Tote Bag

 Check out my Instagram for daily updates and to see Mother Goose and I compete against each other.

L x

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Thursday, 28 May 2020

Let’s talk about… Body Image

Hello Readers,

Obvious trigger warning on this post. What brought around the idea for this post was the recent pictures of Adele and the medias reaction to it and some other things I’ve recently seen in the press as well as some conversations I have had the joy of being part of (sarcasm). This also goes both ways which I think people forget I have seen articles about fat-shaming male celebrities calling it a “Dad bod” doesn’t make it okay! And that was about Jason Momoa freaking AQUAMAN are you really going to go there!

Even now over a month after Adele posted the picture you can’t google her name without being bombarded with weight loss theories and headlines. I think these figures are right but my point will still stand but Adele has won nine Brit Awards, an Academy Award, a Golden Globe, fifteen Grammy’s, eighteen Billboard Music Awards, five American Music Awards, and two Ivor Novello Awards for Songwriter of the Year. None of that is now classed as important as it is all is about her weight loss, all them accomplishment no longer mentioned. I’m sure at some point it used to say award-winning singer at least on the first page. Out of the 16 pages, this google search gave me I did not find a single page without a reference to her weight loss, I have honestly just googled Adele nothing too specific. 

How have we become this unhealthily obsessed with weight is worrying especially for young people, imagine a younger sibling or even a family member googling Adele and coming across all this bubble of negative positivity. You might ask what I mean by that statement and I mean this is a wolf in sheep’s clothing and should be seen as much. Some of this “helpful” tips can be dangerous and people have become seriously ill or even died from taking diet pills (there are cases in the UK from this year) or following a “Specific diet” that have been falsely endorsed by celebrities.

I am honestly just as uncomfortable with the term ‘Dad bod’ and anyone who tries to fat shame Jason can go sit in a room with “It’s a small world” on repeat for the next 10 years. In the UK 25 per cent of people diagnosed with an eating disorder are male. There is still so much taboo about men and mental health. I did a post about it last year called “Manning Up” imagine how much harder it is for man to admit he has an eating disorder.

We really need to stop this notion of you are only valued for how much you weigh and how you look and don’t say it not that much of an issue because if it wasn’t “Catfishing” wouldn’t be as big as an issue at it is. And yes, you can fight me on that statement. I am also around 80% sure I could look online at any gossip magazine and be hit with at least one of the following a new celebrity diet, a diet to follow or a celebrity being called out for weight loss or gain.

I spent years learning to love myself after being torn down for how I look from my forehead to my weight and even now almost 10 years later one of the comments will come hit me like a steam train. Before anyone tries to high horse me this isn’t about shaming people for losing or gaining weight it is the notion of you are only valued for how much you weigh and how you look. I think we really need to sit and take a long hard think about our standards of beauty and there have been movements of empowerment about weight the last couple of years but they tend to burn bright and fade away. We need to stop letting them fade away. It is not your duty to tear someone down, anyone can tear someone down, building someone up that's the hard bit! Be the change and build up. 

Also, anyone fat-shaming in lock-down go fuck yourself and go live in your bubble of toxicity and don’t bother anyone else. Final rant stop fat-shaming new mums and been like it took XXX amount of weeks for her to make her debut on the red carpet or getting followed for the exclusive first photo looking like she hasn't had a baby, 1 its RUDE, 2 she's just created life and 3 being a new mum is hard enough back off!

This was my 3am thought hope you like the post and enjoy the rest of your day.

L x

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Monday, 25 May 2020

Blog tour: Death Bringer by Kelly-Marie Pollock

Hello Readers,

Thank you again Melanie at Frasers Fun House for allowing me to join you on anther fun blog tour and for sending me an ebook of Death Bringer by Kelly-Marie Pollock. Here is my review of book one Cherry Nova

 *Little disclaimer I have reformatted this post since Saturday and it wont fix sorry for any issues* 

Title: Death Bringer
Series: The Chronicles of Nova Morgan (Book two)
Release date:  May 16, 2020
Genres: Dark Fantasy, Fantasy, Fiction, Gothic
Pages: 341

Cover Image:

 Synopsis:

Nova may have won the fight for her freedom, but she's far from won the war. Join Nova, Ruth and Chaplin as they leave the grim streets of Victorian London behind and immerse themselves in the magical living realm of Hindra. Their mission appears to be clear; infiltrate the Councils headquarters, freeing the captive, Detective Maximus Steele and overthrowing The Righteous Ones in one fell swoop, but as they're about to realise, all is not what it seems. Time is of the essence and time is running out. From streetworker to rebellion leader, does Nova have what it takes to unchain Hindra or is she simply a pawn in someone else's game?

 Talk about Grabbing your hand and telling you to run. Goodreads link. 

Author Bio:

Kelly-Marie lives in Dorset with her Husband Mitchell, four young children and menagerie of pets. She’d dreamt of being an Author from a very young age and her late Auntie Julie pushed her to follow her dreams. Kelly-Marie is a stay at home Mother, full time career and active Parenting and Mental Health Blogger

Miniature Review

I read Cherry Nova (Book One) and this one back to back so I managed to immerse myself in a world that I never knew existed with ease thanks to the descriptive writing by Kelly-Marie. Overall I was impressed with the plot and character development of this book there is no second book syndrome to be found here. 

I am going to try really hard to keep this spoiler-free but Without giving away any spoilers, I have to say the twists kept drawing me further into the story and I couldn’t put it down.

Detective Max Steele is missing, but Nova knows what really happened. Having successfully raised an army (not a spoiler in the synopsis) It's time to put aside pettiness and for unlikely forces to work together. Not only do new realms appear, but you also get answers for past storylines. Nova knows the odds are already heavily stacked against her despite her army. The main characters continue to show growth and maturity which can be hard to portray with vampires. Despite being complete fiction and hundreds of years old, they still need room to grow, sorry not sorry! I will die on this mountain!

With time against them, Nova has to make instinctive choices about who to trust to accomplish their goal of saving Max. As with Cherry Nova despite the fast pace of this book it still gives you a bit of time to breath. As always things aren’t as easy nor as simple in the world of books and life Nova is promised something, she never thought possible. Overall, I highly recommend Death Bringer. Lauren note because you know how much I love to read book series, not in order you must read this series in the right order I don’t think it’s going to make much sense otherwise sorry. I can't wait to read the final book of the trilogy. 

L x

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Sunday, 24 May 2020

Cherry Nova by by Kelly-Marie Pollock (GIFTED BOOK, REVIEW)

Hello Readers,

Tomorrow I am on the blog tour for the lovely Frasers Funhouse but before that, I have a review of the first book in the series. Thank you again for a free ebook copy of Cherry Nova by Kelly-Marie Pollock in exchange for an honest review.

Okay, guys, I did it I read a book series in order! I know I’m just as shocked as you are. Before we get into this review let’s have a little flashback to teenage me, I am old enough to have read Twilight before the movies and before it was cool and became the IT thing. It was also around the same time I started The House of Night books so I know my vampire books and have read a couple of BAD books.

Huge shout out to Kelly-Marie for straying away from the cliché and create a vampire fiction novel that is decent while using several tropes to her advantage such as amnesia, revenge, lost love and the good old good vs. evil oh come on it’s a guilty pleasure as you know it. What also makes this book stand out amongst its peers is that Kelly-Marie has used her own personal mental health experiences to shape Nova’s behaviour and it is done realistically and beautifully done.

The beginning of this story is full of suspense and action-packed but as we get into the first few chapters it begins to slow down a little bit. Don’t worry it’s a false sense of security before your Thrust into the dark underworld of Victorian London with Nova bouncing between places not knowing who to trust.

Nova is a very interesting character and from the beginning, from when we meet her you can just tell she's going to be a good main character because she is relatable.  Throughout the book, Nova goes through a variety of challenges, changes and emotions and they are all written with an element of personal emotion. We follow Nova from a scared, lonely ‘street rat’, through her confusion and subsequent anger to a glimmer of the kick-ass female protagonist we know she is going to also check back tomorrow see my review of book two and it’s a blogtour.  Nova is a strong-willed character and a is definitely becoming a leader, after her memory returns, so does her determination. You're going to love book two.

Despite all the action in this book, the story-line is wrapped up at the end, giving us closure with enough left over to lead us into book two, Death Bringer.

L x

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Thursday, 21 May 2020

My favourite Retellings

Hello Readers,

Today I thought I would share with you my favourite retellings as you know I’m a fan sorry, not sorry. For this post, I will be including a synopsis and a link to my review. The final three are books I have on my to be read (TBR) pile and the synopsis a reason why they are on my TBR.  

I think we love a retelling because it’s like meeting an old friend and something is comforting about picking up a book and already being semi-familiar with the story and world. Also, if like me you’re a sucker for a retelling you just have to know what the twist is this time we already know the bare bones of the story but are ready to be surprised by new elements and a fantastical setting. whether it’s setting the story in a different time or showing the origin story of a villain instead who maybe isn’t so evil after all (cough, Wicked). I love trying to find the Easter eggs and the cameos of characters and themes from the original. 

 

The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein by KierstenWhite (Frankenstein by Mary Shelley) 

Elizabeth hasn't had a proper meal in weeks. Her thin arms are covered with bruises from her "caregiver," and she is on the verge of being thrown into the streets . . . until she is brought to the home of Victor Frankenstein, an unsmiling, solitary boy who has everything--except a friend. Victor is her escape from misery. Elizabeth does everything she can to make herself indispensable--and it works. She is taken in by the Frankenstein family and rewarded with a warm bed, delicious food, and dresses of the finest silk. Soon she and Victor are inseparable. But her new life comes at a price. As the year's pass, Elizabeth's survival depends on managing Victor's dangerous temper and entertaining his every whim, no matter how depraved. Behind her blue eyes and sweet smile lies the calculating heart of a girl determined to stay alive no matter the cost . . . as the world she knows is consumed by darkness. 

 

Geekerella by Ashely Poston (Cinderella Folk tale)

Part romance, part love letter to nerd culture, and all the feels, Geekerella is a fairy tale for anyone who believes in the magic of fandom. Geek girl Elle Wittimer lives and breathes Starfield, the classic sci-fi series she grew up watching with her late father. So when she sees a cosplay contest for a new Starfield movie, she has to enter. The prize? An invitation to the ExcelsiCon Cosplay Ball, and a meet-and-greet with the actor slated to play Federation Prince Carmindor in the reboot. With savings from her gig at the Magic Pumpkin food truck (and her dad’s old costume), Elle’s determined to win…unless her stepsisters get there first. Teen actor Darien Freeman used to live for cons—before he was famous. Now they’re nothing but autographs and awkward meet-and-greets. Playing Carmindor is all he’s ever wanted, but the Starfield fandom has written him off as just another dumb heartthrob. As ExcelsiCon draws near, Darien feels more and more like a fake—until he meets a girl who shows him otherwise.

 

A Curse so Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer (Beauty and The Beast by Gabrielle-Suzanne de Villeneuve)

It once seemed so easy to Prince Rhen, the heir to Emberfall. Cursed by a powerful enchantress to repeat the autumn of his eighteenth year over and over, he knew he could be saved if a girl fell for him. But that was before he learned that at the end of each autumn, he would turn into a vicious beast hell-bent on destruction. That was before he destroyed his castle, his family, and every last shred of hope. Nothing has ever been easy for Harper but when she tries to save someone else on the streets of Washington, DC, she's instead somehow sucked into Rhen's cursed world. A prince? A monster? A curse? Harper doesn't know where she is or what to believe. But as she spends time with Rhen in this enchanted land, she begins to understand what's at stake. And as Rhen realizes Harper is not just another girl to charm, his hope comes flooding back. But powerful forces are standing against Emberfall . . . and it will take more than a broken curse to save Harper, Rhen, and his people from utter ruin.

 

Deathless Girls by Kiran Millwood Hargrave (Dracula by Bram Stoker)

Gothic, intoxicating, feminist, darkly provoking and deeply romantic. On the eve of her divining, the day she'll discover her fate, seventeen-year-old Lil and her twin sister Kizzy are captured and enslaved by the cruel Boyar Valcar, taken far away from their beloved traveller community. Forced to work in the harsh and unwelcoming castle kitchens, Lil is comforted when she meets Mira, a fellow slave who she feels drawn to in a way she doesn't understand. But she also learns about the Dragon, a mysterious and terrifying figure of myth and legend who takes girls as gifts. They may not have had their divining day, but the girls will still discover their fate...

 

Sea Witch by Sarah Henning (The Little Mermaid by Hans Christian Andersen) 

Everyone knows what happens in the end. A mermaid, a prince, a true love’s kiss. But before that young siren’s tale, there were three friends. One feared, one royal, and one already dead. Ever since her best friend, Anna, drowned, Evie has been an outcast in her small fishing town. A freak. A curse. A witch. A girl with an uncanny resemblance to Anna appears offshore and, though the girl denies it, Evie is convinced that her best friend survived. That her own magic wasn’t so powerless after all. And, as the two girls catch the eyes—and hearts—of two charming princes, Evie believes that she might finally have a chance at her own happily ever after. But her new friend has secrets of her own. She can’t stay in Havnestad, or on two legs unless Evie finds a way to help her. Now Evie will do anything to save her friend’s humanity, along with her prince’s heart—harnessing the power of her magic, her ocean, and her love until she discovers, too late, the truth of her bargain. 

 

On my to be read pile

Cinder by Marissa Meyer (Cinderella Folk tale)

Cinder was gifted to me by my cousin and I still haven’t got round to reading it but it honestly sounds like something I would enjoy. The first book in the Lunar Chronicles series by Marissa Meyer! See where the futuristic YA fairytale saga all began, with the tale of a teenage cyborg who must fight for Earth's survival against villains from outer space. Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth's fate hinges on one girl. Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She's a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister's illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai's, she suddenly finds herself at the centre of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past to protect her world's future. With high-stakes action and a smart, resourceful heroine, Cinder is a Cinderella retelling that is at once classic and strikingly original. 

 

Dorothy must Die by Danielle Paige (The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum)

This has been on my tbr for ages I really do need to bump it up the tbh. I love Wicked so what's not to like about this one. But when your whole life gets swept up by a tornado—taking you with it—you have no choice but to go along, you know? Sure, I've read the books. I've seen the movies. I know the song about the rainbow and the happy little bluebirds. But I never expected Oz to look like this. To be a place where Good Witches can't be trusted, Wicked Witches may just be the good guys, and winged monkeys can be executed for acts of rebellion. There's still a yellow brick road—but even that's crumbling. What happened, Dorothy? They say she found a way to come back to Oz. They say she seized power and the power went to her head. And now no one is safe. My name is Amy Gumm—and I'm the other girl from Kansas. I've been recruited by the Revolutionary Order of the Wicked. I've been trained to fight.

 

Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine (Cinderella Folk tale)

I really need to read the book as I loved the film with Anne Hathaway. At birth, Ella is inadvertently cursed by an imprudent young fairy named Lucinda, who bestows on her the "gift" of obedience. Anything anyone tells her to do, Ella must obey. Another girl might have been cowed by this affliction, but not feisty Ella: "Instead of making me docile, Lucinda's curse made a rebel of me. Or perhaps I was that way naturally." When her beloved mother dies, leaving her in the care of a mostly absent and avaricious father, and later, a loathsome stepmother and two treacherous stepsisters, Ella's life and well-being seem to be in grave peril. But her intelligence and saucy nature keep her in good stead as she sets out on a quest for freedom and self-discovery as she tries to track down Lucinda to undo the curse, fending off ogres, befriending elves, and falling in love with a prince along the way. Yes, there is a pumpkin coach, a glass slipper, and a happily ever after, but this is the most remarkable, delightful, and profound version of Cinderella you'll ever read.

L x

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Monday, 18 May 2020

Blog Tour: Singapore Killer (Ash Carter Book 5) by Murray Bailey (Gifted, Beta Reader, Review)

Hello Readers,

I would like to say huge thank you to Murray for allowing me to be a Beta reader and for also gifting me a copy of Singapore Killer in return for an honest review. Being a beta read in no way affect my ability to give an unbiased review.

I beta read this back in November as I am lucky to be one of Murray's Beta readers, I am so excited to be able to share this review with you now but it’s going to be spoiler-free! Also here’s a link to the first book in the series if you want to go down that rabbit hole.


So first off, I might be a little bias I love a good cult and I love a good serial killer and this book deliver both in a fast-paced action-filled book. As you will see by my review, I have a slightly unhealthy knowledge of serial killers so sorry in advance.

This book goes straight into the action like seriously first page you are in the middle as Ash is called in to investigate a helicopter crash. As always, the investigation isn’t as it seems and is interconnected with numerous murders by a serial killer who has given himself the moniker Black Jack. Ash finds himself deep in the jungle as his quest for the truth slowly unfolds. This leads Ash to find and then going undercover at commune composed of ex-soldiers called Shangri-La. As with many “Normal” communes in the jungle secrets and lies are soon exposed. I really enjoyed this part of the story as mentioned I’m possibly biased but it adds a very nice build-up and you can also feel the tension and uneasiness in the compound grow.

Murray has once again created a delightful cast of characters that the reader either likes or dislikes for all the right reasons including the ‘bad guys’. I say ‘bad guys’ I guessed five possible Black Jacks. Special mention for Ash’s ‘receptionist’ Madame Chau she was just fabulous and I adore her but she kinda scares me like that crazy aunt everyone has. Her and Ash’s working relationship was wonderful to read and explore I hope to see more of it. Also, just to add to all this fun and games Ash is trying to make a living and is forced to take small jobs, like looking for a dog for a bored housewife.

Let’s talk about the other main man, I love Black Jack and his wholesomeness as a character he’s remarkably believable with reflections on Jeffery Dahmer, Ted Bundy, Jack the Ripper with a need for his ego to be stroked like Zodiac and Smiley Face Killers. He is magnificently bad and he’s a good bad guy there’s honestly no redeeming or nice qualities in him. The only titbit you’ll get is I really liked the occasional chapters from his viewpoint.

This is my favourite Ash Cater book yet (Sorry Murray) as this book twists and turns and the body count rises as the hunt for Black Jack reaches its climax. You can’t help but encourage Ash along and warning you are going to feel everything he does. Another well-written book by Murray with strong characters and luxurious descriptions. I can't wait for Singapore Fire.

 That ending!!

There is only one question left, Who is Black Jack?

L x

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