Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Book Review: Binge

Title: Binge
Author: Tyler Oakley
Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK
Release Date: 20/10/2015
Pages: 307
Service: Bought
Format: Hardback 
Buy: Book Depository 
Author Twitter: @tyleroakley

'Pop culture phenomenon. social rights advocate, and the most prominent LGBTQ+ voice on YouTube, Tyler Oakley brings you his first collection of witty, personal, and hilarious essays. 

For someone who made a career out of over-sharing on the Internet, Tyler has a shocking number of personal mishaps and shenanigans to reveal is his first book: experiencing a legitimate rage blackout in a Cheesecake Factory; negotiating a tense standoff with a White House official; crashing a car in front of his entire high school, in an Arby's uniform; projectile vomiting while bartering with a grandmother; and so much more. In Binge, Tyler delivers his best untold, hilariously side-splitting moments with the trademark flair that made him a star.  

Tyler Oakley's 'Binge' was a book that managed to evoke a lot of emotions inside of me. It's hard to write a review of this book without giving too much away and that's the last thing I want to do. Tyler one of the few YouTubers that I follow and I love his videos. His sheer honesty about everything is something that makes me go back to watch every new video. His book was something that I was pretty excited for as soon as I heard about it and knowing that they were going to be essays about his life, I wondered what else he had to tell us that he hadn't already shared. 

Trust me when I say that there's a lot. There were chapters that I balled my eyes out to, ones where I physically laughed out loud but these stories remind you that Tyler is just a regular person. He dealt with the troubles of High School like we all have, cope with love and heartbreak and shows us how fame was not something that he's used to but something that he's learning to deal with and love along with the way. 

 I loved how he didn't decide to put these essays into chronological order just to make it into autobiography. It's just a collection of his essays in the most Tyler Oakley way possible. And whilst YouTubers books are ones that I don't have the tendency to read, I'm so glad that I decided to pick up this one. Some of the messages that were sent across in this book were ones that I know will help me when days are going so well and some of them will just remind me to laugh when things go horrendously wrong. 

Definitely a book to pick up if you want to know a little bit more about Tyler and laugh out loud! 

Rating: ★1/2
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Saturday, 26 March 2016

Book Review: The Queen of the Tearling

Title: The Queen of the Tearling
Publisher: Bantam
Series: The Tearling Trilogy #1
Release Date: 16/07/2015
Pages: 512
Service: Bought
Format: Paperback
Buy: Book Depository

'Kelsea Glynn is the sole heir to the throne of Tearling but has been raised in secret by foster parents after her mother – Queen Elyssa, as vain as she was stupid – was murdered for ruining her kingdom. For 18 years, the Tearling has been ruled by Kelsea’s uncle in the role of Regent however he is but the debauched puppet of the Red Queen, the sorceress-tyrant of neighbouring realm of Mortmesme. On Kelsea’s 19th birthday, the tattered remnants of her mother’s guard - each pledged to defend the queen to the death - arrive to bring this most un-regal young woman out of hiding...

And so begins her journey back to her kingdom’s heart, to claim the throne, earn the loyalty of her people, overturn her mother’s legacy and redeem the Tearling from the forces of corruption and dark magic that are threatening to destroy it. But Kelsea's story is not just about her learning the true nature of her inheritance - it's about a heroine who must learn to acknowledge and live with the realities of coming of age in all its insecurities and attractions, alongside the ethical dilemmas of ruling justly and fairly while simply trying to stay alive...

Wednesday, 23 March 2016

My A-Z of advice

When I saw this writing prompt I was really interested in it and wanted to use it as a post. So, I decided why not! I'm going to do a whole A-Z list of advice, some which might be serious, some a little more light-hearted. 

Always have code names ready, you'll never know when you're going to need them. 
Bubbles are a great way to stop feeling stressed.
Cake can solve everything if you let it. 
Don't end on a bad note with people. 
Eventually, everything will fall into place. 
Fancy food is not always the best food. 
Generic advice is sometimes the best advice.
Heavy objects should not be handled alone if you can't carry them. 
In times of doubt, dance it out! 
Jokes that are corny are the best ones to make. 
Kit kats are worth taking a break for.
Love without holding yourself back 
Movies are great to curl up and watch when you aren't feeling well. 
Never insult a Hufflepuff.
Oranges are hard to peel but are worth the struggle! 
Photos can be a huge pain sometimes but take a lot of them. You won't regret it. 
Questions aren't stupid if you're want to know more. 
Risks are sometimes worth taking. You just need to know which ones you want to take. 
Smile at everyone, no matter how bad your day is. 
Travel the world and see everything that you want to see. 
Underline titles or teachers will spend ten minutes telling your class the importance of it. 
Vicks is great when you have a blocked nose. 
When in doubt, flip a coin. You'll know what you want the result to be. 
Xylophones are very respectable instruments. 
Yell when you need to but not at the people you love. 
Zebra crossings are there for a reason. 

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Saturday, 19 March 2016

Top Ten: Book Series' I'm Dying To Finish (#1)

Books are an amazing thing but the only problem that I have with them is that half of the time when I pick a book up, I don't actually realise that it's part of a series. And sometimes I have to wait a while to get the next book in the series. Here are the top ten book series' that I am dying to finish. 

                                                      1) The Chaos Walking Trilogy by Patrick Ness

I've only read the first book in the series and I loved it. My sister has the other two books but I haven't gotten around to borrowing them off of her yet. But hopefully I'm going to read them soon. The first book had me completely take in. 

2) The Anna and the French Kiss Series by Stephanie Perkins

Yet another trilogy where I have only read the first book. I've only got it in ebook version and I really want the three books in hardback. I cannot stop raving about 'Anna and the French Kiss' so I can't wait to see what the next two books in the series hold. 

3) The Eve Summer Sequence by G&P Gallacher

The next book hasn't come out yet, so I'm only able to read the first book. The next one should be coming out soon and I can't wait to read it. It was such a nice read that had me hooked from the very start and there are so many more things that I want to know about so book two, please come along soon! 

4) The Lord of the Rings Trilogy by J. R. R. Tolkien 

I was dying to read the first book and I fell in love with it instantly. 'The Fellowship of the Ring' was so well written and I loved all the settings. I knew it was a book that I had to pick up after reading 'The Hobbit' and now I just need to get my hands on the next two books. 

5) The Cirque Du Freak Series by Darren Shan 

This is a slightly longer series, but one that I still want to finish! 'A Living Nightmare' was ever-so-slightly creepy but still really enjoyable. It's a story that I still really want to follow and finish.

6) The Inheritance Cycle by Christopher Paolini 

I've got all of the books in the the house and I've read and reread Eragon and gotten halfway through 'Eldest'. I have no idea why I ended up putting it down but I'm really looking forward to reading the whole series and seeing what happens to Eragon. 

7) Pretty Little Liars by Sara Shepard 

This book series is quite big (there are a few more books than the picture shows) so it might take me a little while to finish off but I am determined to get to the end. My sister got me the first book after we watched the show and I wanted to see what the book was like. I ended up getting the second one but I'm in the debate at the moment since wherever I look I can't find the last few books in the covers that I have, which is bugging me a lot. So, I'm going to have to see what happens with the covers with those before I get them. 

8) The Percy Jackson Series 

I got the first book from my uncle at Christmas and now I'm hooked. One of my friends loves the series and talks to me about it and it's made me want to get the rest. As well as that, I love learning about Greek Mythology and the books teach you some parts of it. 

9) The Discworld Series by Terry Pratchet

There are currently 41 books in the Discworld series, and I only have two books. I love the world that Terry Pratchett has created and the books I've got are in the middle of the series Even though you can read the books as stand alones, I want to get the first book and work my way slowly through the whole series. 

10) The School for Good and Evil Trilogy by Soman Chainani 

I really did love the first book, since it took fairy tales in a completely new twist. But the first book left it on a bit of a cliff hanger so I'm dying to find out what's going to go on at the schools. I've heard a few things floating around the place but I want to find out before I get any spoilers. 

So, those are the top ten book series' that I am dying to finish. What are yours?

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Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Book Review: Eragon

Title: Eragon 
Author: Christopher Paolini 
Publisher: Random House Children's Publishing 
Series: The Inheritance Cycle #1
Release Date: 28/08/2003
Pages: 503 
Service: Bought 
Format: Paperback 
Buy: Book Depository 
Author Twitter: @paolini

'When Eragon finds a polished stone in the forest, he thinks it is the lucky discovery of a farm boy; perhaps it will buy his family meat for the winter. But when the stone brings a dragon hatchling , Eragon soon realises he has stumbled upon a legacy nearly as old as the Empire itself. Overnight his simple life is shattered and he is thrust into a perilous new world of destiny, magic and power. With only an ancient sword and the advice of an old storyteller for guidance, Eragon and the fledgling dragon must navigate the dangerous terrain and dark enemies of an Empire ruled by a king whose evil knows no bounds. Can Eragon take up the mantle of the legendary Dragon Riders? The fate of the Empire may rest in his hand.  

'Eragon' follows the story of the Eragon and a dragon as the make their way through Alagaesia trying to figure out what the King of the Empire, Galbatorix, is doing, trying to defeat Urgals along the way. From the moment you open the book, you are transported into their world.

Paolini does not hesitate to throw you into the world he has created and slowly feeds you information to get to grips on Alagaesia and its history. The world was created beautifully and you're able to see the effort he put into creating it. As you are taken through villages, traipsing across desserts and battling your way to the Varden, Paolini has made sure that you have a clear picture about where Eragon is on his journey. 

The book, admittedly, does have a lot of information but not in a way that it feels as though it's all being thrown at you with no time to digest what is going on. Information is given at exactly the right time and it triggered thoughts and theories about what was going to happen next. 

It didn't take long for me to get attached to any of the characters. Eragon was a character that did get on my nerves at times as he didn't seem as grateful about things as he could be and seemed to take many things for granted. I don't think for me, there was a character that I really got attached to. More than emotions, we got thoughts of the character and their actions. 

There were parts where it was hard to push through the book. Things did seem to drag on a little but thankfully, they didn't carry on for too long. 

This book is perfect for anyone who enjoys 'The Lord of the Rings' an amazing book for anyone who loves fantasy and wants to get lost in a journey between a boy and his dragon. 

Favourite Quote: 


Saturday, 12 March 2016

Book Review: The Elephant in the Garden

Title: The Elephant in the Garden 
Author: Michael Mopurgo 
Publisher: HarperCollins 
Release Date: 09/06/2011
Pages: 233
Service: Gift 
Format: Paperback 
Buy: Book Depository

'Lizzie and Karl's mother is a zoo keeper; the family has become attached to an orphaned elephant named Marlene, who will be destroyed as a precautionary measure so she and the other animals don't run wild should the zoo be hit by bombs. The family persuades the zoo director to let Marlene stay in their garden instead. When the city is bombed, the family flees with thousands of others, but how can  they walk the same route with an elephant in tow, and keep themselves safe? Along the way, they meet Peter, a Canadian navigator who risks his own capture to save the family.  

Admittedly, Michael Mopurgo's book may be aimed for a younger reader than myself, but age was not something that stopped me from reading this book. I was give a box set of his for my 13th birthday and for some reason I had never gotten the chance to read any of them, I'm glad I finally got around to picking one out from there. 

'The Elephant in the Garden' tells the story of Elizabeth who is in a nursing home to one of the nurses and her son, Karl. She talks about her time in World War Two in Germany and how her and her family escaped the city of Dresden after it was bombed along with and elephant. 

There were a good few reasons that I enjoyed this story. It was just a book that you good read and just enjoy. It showed how strong family values and how this small family of three had to pull through a very harsh winter. How things weren't always easy but they did it as a family. It taught people the importance of family, even in the hardest of times. 

What I did really like about this book is that it showed World War Two from the German civilian's point of view which I think is something that people need to read and learn about. Sometimes, I think people forget that the people of Germany still had to live through the war like everyone else and not everyone agreed with what was going on. Personally, I think this book will be able to show younger readers and older readers exactly like. 

Mopurgo's writing style was something that I really did enjoy reading. It was quite easy to read and had a really nice flow to it. It wasn't patronising and it drew you into the plot. 

Though it wasn't a book that I'm head over heels in love with. I still did enjoy it and I think it's a book for someone who loves reading about civilians in the war without it being all too heavy.

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Saturday, 5 March 2016

Movie Review: Twilight

Title: Twilight 
Based On: Stephanie Meyer's - Twilight 
Running Time: 122 minutes 
Director: Catherine Hardwicke 
Writer: Melissa Rosenberg 
Stars: Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Billy Burke 

'Bella Swan has always been a little bit different. Never one to run with the crowd, Bella never cared about fitting in with the trendy, plastic girls at her Phoenix, Arizona high school. When her mother remarried and Bella chooses to live with her father in the rainy little town of Forks, Washington, she didn't expect much of anything to change. But things do change when she meets the mysterious and dazzlingly beautiful Edward Cullen. For Edward is nothing like any boy she's ever met. 

He's nothing like anyone she's ever met, period. He's intelligent and witty, and he seems to see straight into her soul. In no time at all, they are swept up in a passionate and decidedly unorthodox romance - unorthodox because Edward really isn't like the other boys. He can run faster than a mountain lion. He can stop a moving car with his bare hands. Oh, and he hasn't aged since 1918. Like all vampires, he's immortal. That's right - vampire. But he doesn't have fangs - that's just in the movies. And he doesn't drink human blood, though Edward and his family are unique among vampires in that lifestyle choice. 

To Edward, Bella is that thing he has waited 90 years for - a soul mate. But the closer they get, the more Edward must struggle to resist the primal pull of her scent, which could send him into an uncontrollable frenzy. Somehow or other, they will have to manage their unmanageable love. But when unexpected visitors come to town and realize that there is a human among them Edward must fight to save Bella? A modern, visual, and visceral Romeo and Juliet story of the ultimate forbidden love affair - between vampire and mortal.'