BOOK BLOG: Hannah Capin

Foul is Fair: Menacing, reckless and delicious

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“Elle and her friends Mads, Jenny, and Summer rule their glittering LA circle. Untouchable, they have the kind of power other girls only dream of. Every party is theirs and the world is at their feet. Until the night of Elle’s sweet sixteen, when they crash a St. Andrew’s Prep party. The night the golden boys choose Elle as their next target. They picked the wrong girl. Sworn to vengeance, Elle transfers to St. Andrew’s. She plots to destroy each boy, one by one. She’ll take their power, their lives, and their control of the prep school’s hierarchy. And she and her coven have the perfect way in: a boy named Mack, whose ambition could turn deadly.”

When I first heard about this book, I knew I needed to read it. I didn’t know much about it, but the WHOLE premise of it just spoke to me. It sounded like something I would ADORE and man, did I. I have SO MUCH LOVE for this book. It is DELICIOUSLY EVIL. It’s clever. It’s a little bit evil. It’s brilliantly written.

Foul Is Fair tells the story of Elle, a young girl who is sexually assaulted at a party. She’s fearless, smart, cunning and surrounded by a group of friends who will go to the end of the earth for her. This is a dangerous combination for Elle, as she’s out to get revenge. Revenge is the name of her game. She moves schools to be near to the boys who assaulted her and one by one she picks them off. There’s all kinds of dastardly deeds that go on with Elle and her group of friends. 

When I read this book, I didn’t realise (and I don’t know how I didn’t know) that there would be SUCH strong Lady Macbeth/Macbeth vibes, but my god. It made me love this book even more than I did in the first place. Any time anyone asks me about this book I say the same thing

“Imagine Lady Macbeth was a teenage girl who has been sexually assaulted and is out for blood” 

And I think that is SO BLOODY ACCURATE for this book. 

I think Lady Macbeth is one hell of a woman. She’s power-hungry, reckless, dangerous. Add this to a teenage girl who is out for blood and revenge for something that happened to her and you get Elle. 

Elle joins the school that the boys all attend and changes her identity so they don’t know who she really is. She cuts her hair, changes her name to Jade and infiltrates (pretty swiftly) the “popular” gang pretty quickly. Not everyone trusts her. She ends up in the innermost circle of the popular gang pretty quickly and that’s when things start going wrong: when things start happening to the boys. Of course, things aren’t plain sailing for Jade/Elle. She falls for one of the boys in the group. She falls for him hard. She thinks he’s an innocent in the whole thing, so thinks she can trust him. But is he as innocent as he seems in the whole situation?

With her coven at her side, she will stop at nothing to get vengeance for the thing that happened to her. Her friends come up with very clever plans to get to the boys. To get under their skin. To spook them. To hurt them. To make them doubt themselves. 

There are SO MANY parallels between this book and Macbeth. Anyone who is a Macbeth fan will love this (it’s my favourite play). I can’t sing enough of its praise to be able to tell you how menacing and revenge filled this is! 

My Goodreads review:

This book gives me mega strong Lady Macbeth vibes and I am HERE FOR IT. You can’t beat a murderous, rampaging coven of teenage girls seeking revenge. This is on the edge of reckless and menacingly clever. I am here for it.

And there you go! Massive thank you to the publishers, Penguin, for sending me a review copy… I have since made 3 people buy it to read it! If you’ve read this, please talk to me in the comments. I need more people who love it! 

Can you recommend me any Macbeth retellings?
Have you read Fair is Foul?
Do you have a favourite Shakespeare?

S x

Monday = Me day

Hello!

I’ve decided that I’m going to make Monday a “me” post day. By that I don’t mean I’m going to be posting all about me… but it’s not necessarily going to be a bookish day: it might be about school, about my life, about my MH: it’ll be something personal, not necessarily bookish. It MIGHT be bookish, but it won’t be a review. I always love when I get to learn more about a blogger and writing my post last week (see here) was such a great thing for me to do that I thought I’d love a space on this blog for me, the person, not just me the book blogger! I hope you guys stick around and read my Monday posts, but if they’re not your jam, that’s OK. There’ll still be plenty of bookish content the rest of the days! 

I’m going to kick off Me Day Mondays with a “happy post“. These are some of my favourite posts to write and to read. I stole the idea from my gorgeous friend Grace Latter (who is a proper babe and you should all be following her on all of the social medias if you’re not already) and I’ve well and truly taken it under my belt! 

Breakfasts with my friends. Spending time with my mam. Drinking wine on a Saturday afternoon like a fancy lady. Going back to work. New challenges. New friends. Getting so much joy out of teaching. Knowing that I’m working really hard and it’s having an impact. Reading books because I want to. Spending my birthday reading, having cake and talking about books. When people remember small things about me. Starbucks Fridays. Birthday videos from the twiglets. Getting lovely emails. Having people back in my life who’ve been gone a while. Seeing the look of joy in my kids faces when they’re enthusiastic about something. Reading Letters From The Lighthouse with the kids and them having so much enthusiasm about it. Laughing at my pal-o. Booking train tickets for London in Feb. Chocolate hob nobs and a cup of tea. Looking after myself. Buying tights that fit. Pyjamas. Clearing out my wardrobe. A new diary. Ticking off things on my to do list. Making time for meditating. Falling back to sleep on a weekend. Listening to Disney playlists as I’m marking. Being productive. Books. Always books. 

In light of ‘Monday Me Day’, I’d like to pass the torch on to you to find out what you’d like to know about me as a person? Have you got anything you’d like me to talk about? Is there anything you’d like to know about me? What do you want to see more of around here that isn’t books? 

S x 

S4S -“Me” book

Hello you gorgeous Sunday lot!

How are you doing on this fine sunny Sunday in Newcastle? What does today have in store for you? I’m probably going to be doing the usual: blogging, working, reading, showering and sleeping! I am SO FUN. I’m SO ROCK AND ROLL. 

Anyway. You’re here for this week’s installment of #SixforSunday. This week, #SixforSunday asks for:

Books people associate with me

Now I’m going for bookish things people associate with me (mainly authors and genres because I’m PREDICTABLE in my tastes!) I asked some friends and the kids at school and all of their responses were TOTALLY what I would expect… so I guess I have a brand and I’m sticking with it! 

  1. Melinda Salisbury
    I don’t think this one will come as a surprise to anyone. If you ask ANYONE on twitter to give you the author they associate with me, Mel would come first. I have an awful lot of pride in being known as #1 Mel fan. If you don’t know her books, please get on that.
  2. Maz Evans
    Miss, you’re constantly telling us about those books because you love them. It would be unfair if we didn’t say Maz. Does she know how much you love her books?” (said by one of the Y5s I taught last term)
  3. Sara Barnard
    Again, another one that didn’t surprise me when it came up. I love Sara. She’s an amazing person; she’s a wonderful human. Her books make me so bloody happy. I even have a ‘Goodbye Perfect’ mug. So yes, Sara. 
  4. Sprayed edges
    Miss, you get SO EXCITED when books have sprayed edges. They make you so happy” (they’re not wrong, I love a sprayed edge SO MUCH. The more unusual/gorgeous the better!)
  5. Middle grade fantasy books
    THESE GUYS ARE MY BLOODY JAM. My personal/class library at school is 75% fantasy and 25% contemporary MG books. I am such a sucker for fantasy books. 
  6. Magic
    This was a RESOUNDING answer from the kids I teach, and a lot of the people I asked. “If you could choose your perfect book, there’d be an awful lot of magic” (no shame. Gimme all dem magics)

I must also say, L.D.Lapinski came close to being 6th “because it’s the book you won’t shut up about at the minute miss and I mean that in the very best way. We love how much you talk about books“. 

So yes. I think that list is the most me list in the world. Some YA, some MG, some specific authors. If anyone wants to comment on what they associate with me, go for it! I’d love to know! 

Thank you so much to everyone who has joined in with #SixforSunday this week! 

See you next week! 

S x

BLOG TOUR: Lisa Williamson

Hello loves!

How are you today? What’s going on in your world? Anything exciting?

Today I’m here to be part of the blog tour for the paperback edition of Paper Avalanche by Lisa Williamson! To coincide with the release of the paperback, the publishers have also rereleased 2 of Lisa’s other amazing books with gorgeous sprayed edges and I couldn’t have been more happy to see them! Just look at them!

Updated Lisa Williamson Jackets Nov 2019

Now I’ve read both Paper Avalanche (I read it in hardback) and The Art of Being Normal and I’ve shared my thoughts about them, so I thought today I’d share my thoughts on ‘All About Mia.’

 All About Mia: a brilliant story with family at it’s heart

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“One family, three sisters. GRACE, the oldest: straight-A student. AUDREY, the youngest: future Olympic swimming champion. And MIA, the mess in the middle.

Mia is wild and daring, great with hair and selfies, and the undisputed leader of her friends – not attributes appreciated by her parents or teachers. When Grace makes a shock announcement, Mia hopes that her now-not-so-perfect sister will get into the trouble she deserves. But instead, it is Mia whose life spirals out of control – boozing, boys and bad behaviour – and she starts to realise that her attempts to make it All About Mia might put at risk the very things she loves the most.”

I remember picking up this book knowing that I was going to be impressed. Lisa has this incredibly effortless way of punching you in the face and making you feel all of the things. This book was just great and it made me laugh AND cry.

Mia is the middle sister of the family; older sister Grace is the over-achiever who’s scored herself a spot in a much sought-after university; younger sister Audrey is a swimmer who has the Olympics in her sight. Mia is just Mia. No university, Olympics, greatness in her sights. She doesn’t know what her “thing” is and feels like she’s living in the shadow of her sisters’ greatness. With all of this, and then a revelation from one of her sisters, Mia’s life doesn’t go QUITE how she planned. 

I loved the exploration of family dynamics in this book. I only have a brother myself, so getting to read about life with 2 sisters was great. Some of the things I could relate to! There were lots of moments in this book between the sisters that made my heart just jump with joy and that’s what I’m here for. It’s always great to read HONEST portayals of families too because we all know that our families aren’t perfect, so reading this imperfect family was refreshing. 

I started the book and I didn’t love Mia. I don’t know what it was about her, but we just didn’t click, but as I read, she grew on me. I learned to love her. She makes mistakes, she said some of the wrong things and DEFINITELY DOES some not so wise things. Her character arc was just wonderful to experience with her. She becomes someone I want to hug and love. She has a wonderful sense of humour – if you’re a fan of a sarcastic, sassy MC, then Mia is definitely a girl for you!

This book is one that I really did love. It’s like one of those brilliant YA books that you just wanna devour. With characters you wanna fall for, emotions you will definitely feel and moments that we can all empathise with, this is how it’s done. It’s like reading about yourself, or your friends, without being pointed at. Mia learns that it’s OK to not know what your thing is, it’s OK to make mistakes and it’s OK to still be learning… and we learn and appreciate this alongside her. 

Lol, my Goodreds review is of course as helpful as ever!

Give Mia a chance. She’ll grow on you.

Have you read All About Mia?
Are you, like me, a massive Lisa Williamson fan?
Can you recommend me some books like this one to read?

A massive thank you to the publishers David Fickling Books for inviting me to be part of the blog tour. I love Lisa’s work a lot! Check out the rest of the blog tour to see what other’s think! 

If you’d fancy a copy of Paper Avalanche for yourself, click on over to Waterstones to get yourself a copy! I would TOTALLY recommend it! 

Paper Avalanche blog tour banner

S x 

BLOG TOUR: Respect

Respect: an informative and approachable way to teach children all about the importance of consent.

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“Your body belongs to you and you get to set your own rules, so that you may have boundaries for different people and sometimes they might change. Like when you hi-five your friends and kiss your kitten, but not the other way round! But consent doesn’t need to be confusing. From setting boundaries, to reflecting on your own behaviour and learning how to be an awesome bystander, this book will have you feeling confident, respected, and 100% in charge of yourself and your body.”

Due to changes in the curriculum and the importance of conversations around consent, it has been added to the PSHE curriculum which all schools must teach. Respect is a wonderful little book which ties in so beautifully with that: it’s child friendly, doesn’t shy away from some tough topics and deals with them with great respect (lol) and isn’t patronising at all. 

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One of the things that I loved most about this book was how it managed to bring to life some of the toughest conversations we might need to have with children around these themes. Using the incredible illustrations, children learn quickly all about these things. It’s fun, it’s playful and most importantly it’s smart: it teaches kids at their level. It’s certainly been a big hit in my Year 6 classroom with quite a few of my children picking it up and then having some tricky conversations and asking some big questions. 

For parents and teachers alike, themes like consent can be really bloody daunting, so teaching them, when appropriate, about these things is an absolute necessity. When you’re able to do it through the medium of a book which children find engaging, that’s when you’ve hit a winner. 

I really do think this book is brilliant and I think it’s an important one for parents and teachers alike to think about. Our kids are a lot more savvy and clued up than I certainly was when I was younger, so we need to equip them with the tools for the world they live in now and this book, while it couldn’t have all of the solutions, is a brilliant tool for kids to have at their disposal. 

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A massive thank you to the publishers for inviting me to be on this blog tour! This book is already a hit at school and I’d love to see more books like this available to children, parents and teachers alike. 

Can you recommend any books around these themes?

Speak to you all soon!

S x 

BOOK BLOG: Jason Reynolds

Sunny: a brilliant story to add to a brilliant series! 

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Anyone who’s been here before (or follows me on Twitter) will know that I am a MASSIVE fan of the Run series by Jason Reynolds. I have read both Ghost and Patina (spoiler: I loved them both), so when I saw that it was time for Sunny to be out, I needed to get my hands on it. 

This series follows a bunch of 4 runners who are part of the same running team. They’re 4 diverse characters who are dealing with a whole host of different things in their lives and they have running as some kind of escape from their lives.

These books are wonderful books for Year 5s/Year 6s to read when they want something a bit more meaty to deal with. There’s some mature themes dealt with in them, but they’re done brilliantly. 

Anyway, let’s get on with talking about Sunny!

“When Sunny stops running in the middle of a race, Coach asks him what he wants to do instead. His answer is dance, but you can’t be on a track team and dance… can you? With his dad’s expectations weighing down on him, Sunny finally finds a track event that feels like dancing. But as he practices for this new event, can he let go of everything that’s been eating him up inside?”

I started reading this book and was instantly met with this wonderful, bright, weird (self-confessed) young man who saw colour and sound in everything in the world. There’s a sound to match everything in Sunny’s world: the way he dances, how people walk, how he runs. He’s writing in his diary because that’s what he does to make the noises stop slightly. His world gets a bit too noisy, and he gets a bit too angry, so he writes in a diary to make these things seem less intimidating. 

You meet this young man who is going through it all. He’s learning about himself and that the image his dad has of him isn’t the image he has of himself. He’s not a runner anymore. He’s tired of running. It doesn’t challenge him. He knows he can run and win. So he just stops. Mid race. He loves dancing. It makes sense to him. It makes him happy. He’s scared to share this with the people around him because it’s not what is expected of him, but when he does share it with Coach, Coach does (of course) use it to show Sunny that there is something he can do that isn’t running: discus throwing. As Coach says “it’s basically dancing”. 

What you get in this story is an exploration of finding out how to be good at something that you’re not naturally good at. How you can blame yourself for something that isn’t your fault. How family will always be family. How grief can appear in adults. How guilt can drive motives. How there’s always light in the world. How hope can be the thing that keeps us moving. 

Sunny is a wonderful main character. He’s so full of pizzazz (is that how you spell that word?!) and he’s so unique. I loved that he was different. He thinks in his own way and reading his diaries was refreshing. It was so lovely to hear his story through his thoughts, through his eyes. His relationship with his dad starts as cold and distant, but as the two grow to learn about each other (with the help of Gramps and Aurelia, who I loved) this begins to change. The last page gave me such feels. There’s some gorgeous moments of gentleness in this story that really punched me in the guts. I think the contrast between his relationship with Coach (who I have adored for 3 books now and I want him to have his own book) and his relationship with dad was interesting. Dad’s arc was gorgeous to read though. Reading adult grieving processes in stories always hits me where it hurts. 

I loved that this book explored the importance of Sunny making decisions for himself, not just proceeding with the decisions made by his parents for him. He does things because he’s trying to fill a hole that he thinks he made. He runs because he’s trying to fill a hole in his dad’s life, where his mum should be. When he gets to the point where he realises that’s not who he is, he makes a decision and just stops. Dead in the middle of a race. He’s tired. He’s tired of being what others think. 

This is a story full of warmth, love, respect and sadness, but also JAM PACKED with hope. Hope that you can be whoever you want to be. Hope that you can do what makes you happy. Hope that even the hardest of times have an ending. Hope that the people around you will support you, even if you don’t think they will.

I can’t wait for the fourth book in this series to come out (later this year I think), but at the same time, I’m not ready for it to be over. I hope Jason Reynolds writes books for many years to come. And I hope Knights Of keep giving me amazing books to read too! 

My Goodreads review:

I love this series so much and getting to know these kids makes me so happy. This deals so gently with grief and how adults deal with it in the background, and in the foreground you’ve got brilliant Sunny who is weird and wonderful and great. He’s a runner, a dancer, a worrier. He’s surrounded by these amazing people and I’m so glad.

Have you read any of the Run series?
Are you following the escapades of Knights Of?
Can you recommend me any books like this?

If you’re not following Knights Of on twitter, please go do that. They are making waves and I just think they’re doing such an amazing job. 

S x

A decade in the life of me…

The start of a new decade is a funny thing.

We all know I’m a proper sentamentalist and I’m an emotional person. Seeing everyone’s posts about 2010 vs 2020 made me think about all of the things that happened to me from 2010-2019. I went into it thinking “I’ve not really achieved/done a lot in 10 years”, but looking over it, I have. So this post is probably more for me than for anyone else, but if you’re interested, here’s a decade in the life of me (in no real order, except the order my brain thought of it). There’ll be things I’ve forgotten – this isn’t an exhaustive list by any means. 

Fell in love a few times. Had my heart broken a few times. Imagined I’d marry one of them. Was crushed when that didn’t happen. Made some tragic love life decisions, but learned from them. 
Visited Paris. Had an absolute blast. Learned a lot about myself. Stood at the top of the Eiffel Tower with a glass of champage.
Became a blogger. It changed my life. Won an award. Met some incredible people. Made some life-long friends. Chaired events with some of my favourite authors in the land. Began to call some of my favourite authors my friends. Realised that needing an escape isn’t a weakness. Realised that people care about what I have to say and that they will read what I have to say.
Read a lot of books. Some which changed my life. Kept most of them either in my bedroom, my classroom or my school library. Kept some of them in my heart.
Started working in a school. Worked my arse off for a few years. Realised that you can chase your dreams and they can come true.
Went to university. It changed my life. Worked really fucking hard. Wrote a dissertation. Graduated. Got my teaching qualification. Started to think about getting a Masters. 
Became a teacher. It changed my life. Got my first class. Passed my NQT year. Cried a lot. Doubted myself a lot. Had to have many pep talks. Realised teaching definitely is the thing for me. Wrote for a teaching magazine. Helped a lot of people and needed a lot of help.
Became a godmother. It changed my life.
Visited my brother in Sweden. It didn’t change my life, but it made me miss him an awful lot.
Visited New York. It made me speechless. Made friends on the other side of the pond who changed my life.
Lost a lot of weight (6 stone) and probably put it all back on. Realised my weight doesn’t define me.
Stood up for myself and what I want time after time.
Turned 30. Realised that age genuinely is just a number.
Learned a lot about myself. Learned a lot about other people.

Cried a lot. Laughed a lot.
Ate lots of breakfasts. Realised that going out for breakfast was one of the things that made me happy.
Visited the seaside a lot.
Made friends with people I never imagined I would make friends with. Lost friends. Tried to surround myself with people who are good for me. 

S x 

S4S – 2019 Favourites

Hello everyone! 

How are we all? What’s going on this lovely Sunday? I’m hoping it is a sunny Sunday! Sun makes me so happy! 

You’ve popped along today for #SixforSunday I see? Today I’m sharing:

2019 faves

So… I’m going for a range of 6 books. 6 books I loved a lot in 2019. If you’re interested in my Top 10 YA books or my Top 10 MG books of 2019, please click on those posts! There was a lot of deliberation in those posts. 

So here you have it… my 6 2019 faves!

s4s 2019 faves

I’m not sure these choices will surprise any of you! These 6 books have a very special in my heart for all of the different reasons. I’d love to talk to you if you have chosen/read any of these too! 

Massive massive thank you for coming along! 

Remember if you’re joining in the #SixforSunday fun this year, leave your link in the comments for everyone else to check out and use the hashtag on twitter! Thank you so much to everyone who joined in last week: you all made my heart sing! 

See you next week for: Six books people associate with me!

S x 

 

BOOK BLOG: L.D.Lapinski

The Strangeworlds Travel Agency: the start of a complete adventure that I can’t wait to go along on!

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“At the Strangeworlds Travel Agency, each suitcase transports you to a different world. All you have to do is step inside…
When 12-year-old Flick Hudson accidentally ends up in the Strangeworlds Travel Agency, she uncovers a fantastic secret: there are hundreds of other worlds just steps away from ours. All you have to do to visit them is jump into the right suitcase. Then Flick gets the invitation of a lifetime: join Strangeworlds’ magical travel society and explore other worlds. But, unknown to Flick, the world at the very centre of it all, is in danger. Buildings and even streets are mysteriously disappearing. Once Flick realizes what’s happening she must race against time before it collapses into nothingness — and takes our world with it.”

Now, we all know I love a good fantasy book over here at A Little But A Lot, and it’s SO INCREDIBLY REFRESHING to read a fantasy book that I haven’t come across before. To read a bunch of characters, a plot and a world (or group of worlds) that I’ve not come across is just gorgeous. You can’t beat that feeling of stepping into a new world and just falling head over hells for it. With The Strangeworlds Travel Agency, I found that. I found a book that I needed to devour. I read it greedily. I needed to know what was coming next. I wanted to know what was going on. I had a million questions and I needed the answers. There were characters who I needed to know more about. I wanted their back stories. 

The premise of this book, this series of books I SHOULD say (we all know I love a series too so that was music to my ears) is that there are magical people in the world who have the powers to visit other worlds through magical suitcases. Young Flick (our MC) is a girl who discovers she is able to do this, but it comes at a price: saving the world. Imagine that… being able to open one of these magical suitcases and jumping in (following the rules of course) and then being in a new and wonderful world. I don’t know that I’d be brave enough to do that to be honest, but I absolutely love the idea. Something that I love about this book is that it made the ordinary extraordinary. Nothing was quite what it seemed. There was always a bit of a spark of magic with everything. There was that twinkle in the eye.

The world building in this book is top notch. From Flick and Jonathon’s very real world, to the many and varied worlds they jump into, there’s something for everyone. I loved that as I went through, it was a very immersively written book. You are there. As you read, it’s like reading a film. You see it so clearly and you can’t help but feel like you’re there. Regardless of where you are, who you’re with, you’re there in the book in the amazing array of worlds that Lapinski has written. Each of the unique worlds are crafted so beautifully that you could quite happily stay there to discover the magic and the wonder in these places. You leave with more questions than you started with and I think that’s the majesty of this book. You should have more questions. You should want more from these worlds. That’s what makes you want to read more. I can’t wait to see where we get to explore in the coming books.

Along with the incredible worlds that I really adored, you have characters who show the determination, braveness and humour that the best people have. You meet Flick: brave, bold, brazen. She finds out she’s got to help save a city from certain destruction, but not just the city, but the world. She’s hesitant at first (who’d blame her?) but allows her curiosity to bubble under the surface. She wants to seem cool, but we all know that deep down she can’t wait to get her feet wet and start adventuring. She’s a brilliantly loveable character. Alongside Flick, we have the ever sassy and much needed Jonathon. He’s got a very quick wit; there’s a lot of snark. He seems to be uncaring, but deep down he very much takes his job seriously. He’s desperate to do something about finding what was lost. He needs help, but he’s a bit proud. He definitely shone to me as a character that you don’t read much in MG books and I think he is a WELCOME addition to the world of MG. Both of these characters are the kind that grip onto you and you can’t quite get rid of in the very best ways. You become invested in them and what is happening to them, so you HAVE to read on to know they’re OK. 

Something which makes this book even more wonderful in my opinion is its exploration of themes which are very real to us all: friendship, identity, family, loss and love in all its guises. Books for kids are more so dealing with bigger and bigger issues and I welcome it with open arms. This book doesn’t shy from dealing with these issues and they’re done in a brilliant way. You very much have an incredible adventure book here that weaves these subplots into the story so you experience them with the characters. I loved the friendship between Jonathon and Flick. It’s unconventional, but it works. They balance each other so beautifully. They’re what the other needs, without accepting that as a thing. I can’t wait to watch their friendship blossom in the rest of the series. There’s nods to gender identity that I think are really bloody important. It’s not a big thing, but it’s there. It’s done so seamlessly and beautifully that it’s just part of the book.

Reading Strangeworlds made me laugh, cry and delighted me. It’s a hug in a book that’s just taken you on a bit of an adventure. It’s danger and then a cup of tea and a biscuit offered when you get back. It’s a glorious mix of is an hope, adventure, exploration, love, humour, excitement, and because every good book needs it, a bit of peril. You never feel like you’re not safe though. This book is a complete hit in my reading life and I can’t wait to see how everything is explored and developed in the coming books. I finished book 1 with SO MANY QUESTIONS, so bring on book 2!

My Goodreads review:

A complete and utter ride. Just everything I needed in a book: magic, friendship, laughter, snark and adventure. I think this is gonna be something huge. Bloody loved every second. There’s something for everyone here and I can’t wait for the world to read it. The characters are amazing; the worlds are just exceptional and the writing is lush. I want to be part of this world!

Because I loved this book so much, I created this mood board that isn’t really spoiler-y at all, but was a collection of pictures that I saw and definitely made me think of this incredible book!

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Phew. What a mammoth review that was. But I need you guys to know that this book is magical and brilliant and wonderful. Out in April, I implore you all to preorder it now!

Would you jump through a suitcase if it took you somewhere new?
What would you hope to see/find there?
HAVE YOU PREORDERED THIS ALREADY PLEASE?

A massive thank you to my friend for letting me read her proof copy of this book! It was much needed for my little brain! And thank you to YOU for reading my blog!

S x

ThursTAG: New Year’s Resolution Tag

Hello friends, 

It is me, your Thursday Tag fairy! I’m here to do New Year’s Resolutions. 

Now, as a human, I’m not big on resolutions because I hate failure haha. Seriously though, that is deep and true. I don’t set them because I may fail doing them. I like them in theory, but I don’t tend to set them. *shrug*

But you’re not here to listen to me drivel on about my deepest darkest thoughts and innermost feelings. You’re here to read the tag. So let’s do it! 

new years resolution tag banner

An author you’d like to read that you’ve never read:

V. E. Schwab. My friend Kelly bought me the Darker Shade of Magic trilogy for my birthday and I haven’t got round to reading them yet, so I really need to get round to that!

A book you’d like to read:

ALL OF THE BOOKS. 

A classic you’d like to read:

*shrug* What constitutes classic? Someone recommend me a classic they think I’ll enjoy please.

A book you’d like to reread:

I’m not a big rereader however I would like to reread 1984. And after reading it in such a greedy reading kind of way, I’d love to read The Strangeworlds Travel Agency by L.D. Lapinski again. 

A book you’ve had for ages and want to read:

God. So many. However THUG probably needs to take that title. 

A big book you’d like to read:

Big books scare the life out of me. I do need to finish Priory of the Orange Tree though. Every time I look at it, it just sneers at me 

An author you’ve previously read and would like to read more of:

All of my favourites. Seriously they all need to just write more books thanks and get them to me ASAP THANKS (because I don’t have enough to read?)

A book you got for Christmas and would like to read:

The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern. My gorgeous friend Charlotte bought it for me.

A series you want to read from start to finish:

A Darker Shade of Magic trilogy (I think it’s a trilogy). I’ve heard amazing things about them AND I own them all, so I have no excuse really… right?

A series you want to finish that you’ve already started:

Most of the series I have started and not finished is because the rest of the books aren’t out yet. I’m a proper lover of a series and will DEVOUR the books when they come out. Gimme those character arcs and breadcrumbs of knowledge.

Do you set reading goals? If so, how many books do you want to read in 2020?

I do: I always set my Goodreasd challenge at 52 – that’s a book a week. Yes, I always beat it. Yes, it’s more than achieveable, but that’s what I do. I managed 138 books this year which I think is pretty good going. 

Any other reading goals?

Read more of what I enjoy and not feel like I have to read what everyone else is reading just because it’s what’s cool? 

And there you go! My New Years Resolutions tag. Feel free to have a go at this yourself! 

How do you feel about resolutions?
What books are on your list?
Are you a lover of a series like me?

Talk to me in the comments, or I’ll see you over on Twitter! 

S x