June Book Review Roundup

Thursday, June 30, 2016
June Book Review Roundup
I haven't had a fantastic reading month in June as I have been so focused on my driving test last week which I didn't pass but it was only because of a teeny tiny inconsequential mistake that I'm so annoyed by but anyway, I only managed to finish five books in June *cries*. Here are my thoughts: 

*Soft In The Head by Marie-Sabine Rogers 

I already have a full review of this book on my blog so I won't go into too much detail here but I just want to say that I loved this book even though it isn't from a genre that are usually read from; I was very kindly sent it from the lovely people at Pushkin Press which is quickly becoming one of my favourite publishers. I love the cover and the characters especially Margueritte. The themes of friendship and the power of books within this novel is so endearing and sweet! Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5. 

*This Savage Song by V.E Schwab 
Again I also have a full review of this book on my blog which you can check out if you want a more in-depth review; I was sent it to review by Titan Books so thank you! I'm not a massive fan of the cover but the story is fantastic! The writing style is so incredibly easy to read, it is fast paced and I loved the character of August and even the monsters – it's such a unique book but it feels oddly familiar and I can't recommend it enough! I now need to buy more of her books, particularly A Darker Shade Of Magic which sounds amazing. Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5. 

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern 
Before I bought this book I had heard nothing but amazing things about it but I don't usually tend to go with the hype especially the book isn't in a genre that are usually read from but I was so wrong with this one! I adore the cover, the characters, the writing style and the story overall. It is such a unique story, it's magical, enchanting (literally!) and it wraps you around and around until you never want to leave - like the circus itself! I love the two main characters and well all of the characters of the circus! I need to see if she has any of the books as I need them all – her writing style is amazing although the only thing I didn't like about the book was the chapters jumped back and forwards in time so it was a little bit confusing but I still loved it. I read it in a couple of days and I can't recommend it enough! I love the magical and mysterious circus elements so if you know of any similar books then let me know in the comments. Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5!

Uprooted by Naomi Novak 
Again another very hyped up book especially in the booktube community and again I didn't want to believe the hype but it's a fantastic book! I have the hardcover version which is just gorgeous! The writing style is very easy to follow and it isn't a very complicated story (although the ending to me was a little bit confusing and anticlimactic). I loved the main character and the Dragon even though he is quite annoying at times and I liked their relationship although I wish certain to people got together in the end. The magic in this world wasn't super unique but it was still interesting and entertaining to read. I especially like the world and the effects of the wood on the villagers – it was darker than I thought it would be and I loved it! Highly recommend, although it did seem a little predictable and familiar at times. Overall rating: ★★★★☆, 4/5. 

*A Graphic Cosmogony 
Another book I already have a full review on my blog so check it out if you want to know more. I really started to get into graphic novels and illustrated books this year and Nobrow have some gorgeous books to choose from! The cover is gorgeous, all of the other illustrations are gorgeous and I loved the majority of the stories especially Luna, Deity School and Pilgrims. Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5. 

*The Pendragon Legend by Antal Szerb 
This book is definitely one of my favourites of the month as well as The Night Circus and This Savage Song. Firstly, I adore the cover, it's beautifully published and the story has so many elements that I love such as myth, mystery, the occult, folktales, ghostly beings, Welsh legends and so much more. I adore the storyline, the characters were so interesting and the writing is surprisingly easy to read on the whole. The only thing I didn't like were the remarks and insinuations tat intelligent woman are masculine which really gets under my skin. I have a full review already on my blog. Overall rating: ★★★★☆, 4/5. 

I'm currently reading an advanced readers copy of The Lament of the Fallen by Gavin Chait which I also really like so far as well as With Malice by Eileen Cook from Hot Key Books. 

Have you read any of these books? What are you currently reading?

Summer Handbag Wish List

Wednesday, June 29, 2016
Summer Handbag Wish List
It's now officially summer *how that happened I have no idea!* so I always feel the need to add some colour to my wardrobe! I'm not usually a fan of colour unless you count greys, navy, black and white as colourful but one way in which I think I can easily add colour is through accessories and bags. Here's my summer bag wish list:

DKNY Tote (£102.50, SALE)  -  Lulu Guinness Light Blue Cross Body Bag (£147.50, SALE)  -  Radley Tote (£10)  -  Michael Kors Bag (£220)  -  Ted Baker Pink Bag (£54.50, SALE)

House of Fraser are currently having their The Big Brand sale so they have so many discounts on a range of products from designer handbags *drools*, dresses and home items to shoes, accessories and makeup. The sale is up to 50% off but there are now further reductions and it is taking pretty much ALL of my willpower not to make an order as learning to drive is SO expensive *cries* and that sadly has to come first - I don't want to be an adult anymore! This is a sponsored post.

What do you think of my wish list? Have you bought anything from the House of Fraser sale? 

Unique Gift Ideas Ft. PrezzyBox

Tuesday, June 28, 2016
Unique Gift Ideas Ft. PrezzyBox
I love to give gifts, the more unique the better and I love to receive unique and special gifts *who doesn't*. PrezzyBox has a fantastic range of gifts and I was very kindly sent a couple that are really unique and would be great gifts!

Firstly, a great gift for foodies and green fingered friends, the *Indoor Allotment (£24.95) which is the cutest storage/herb garden. It comes with three plant pots and trays, instructions, soil pellets, scissors and oregano, basil and coriander seeds. I use fresh herbs pretty much everyday as does my dad so this is perfect. We usually buy those packets of fresh herbs but they never last so growing our own seems like the solution.
Unique Gift Ideas Ft. PrezzyBox
I love the design, it has a cute white picket fence which hides most of the ugly plant pots and it has an adorable little shed on one side - the door opens and you can keep the seed packets, instructions and scissors in there so there is no mess! I've planted the seeds and yes, it was a bit messy but I can't wait for them to grow so I can use the herbs. Unique Gift Ideas Ft. PrezzyBox
Sticking with the food theme, I also received the *Personalised Bistro Slate Sign (£11.95, SALE) which is something I've wanted for ages and to make it even better, it is personalised! It's a heavy and gorgeous slate sign that you can hang up in your kitchen and write notes, messages or a menu on in chalk.

I know that we'll get so much use out of this sign as we are always having friends and family over and it will make a cute and practical kitchen decor item/gift. It's hand cut so no two are the same and it also has flecks of fools gold in it too which add some subtle sparkle.

What do you think of these gifts? Have you bought from Prezzybox? 

Saturated Colour Make Me Matte + Scrub Stick

Monday, June 27, 2016
Saturated Colour Lipstick Mattifier + Scrub
Back in May 2015, I reviewed the Kiss Cosmetics Lip Scrub but since then the brand has changed it's name and I was kindly sent a couple of products from them to review, including the *Saturated Colour Scrub Stick (£6.50) which I really liked last year. The lip scrub is in a lipstick/lip balm form so it is really quick and easy to use. I rated it 4/5 stars last year and my rating is still the same - it's definitely worth a try!

I also received the *Saturated Colour Make Me Matte Lipstick Mattifier (£8) which is one of their newest products and I was very excited to try it as I haven't seen a product like this before! I love matte lipsticks but I don't have that many so a product that can change any lipstick into a matte version is amazing! I've tried it below with the Makeup Revolution Lipstick in Chauffer and Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Dolce Vita. The Makeup Revolution lipstick definitely has a more glossy finish and it mattified the lipstick instantly! The effect is fantastic and it does feel matte on the lips but it isn't very drying on me. I tried it with a satin/matte lipstick and it made it even more matte.
Saturated Colour Lipstick Mattifier + Scrub
One negative for me is that it can rub off some of the lipstick underneath as you apply the mattifier but I find that if you apply lightly and then pat it onto the lips then it works really well. I'm really impressed with the mattifying effect and it seems to help my lipstick stay on for a little bit longer too. I can't recommend it enough, it's well worth trying. Overall rating: ★★★★☆, 4/5.

Have you tried anything from Saturated Colour? What do you think of lip scrubs or have you heard of a lipstick mattifier? 

Recipe: Cinnamon Banana Bread Muffins

Sunday, June 26, 2016
If you don't know, I love baking, I find baking and cooking in general so relaxing but I haven't had time recently because of learning to drive which is so time consuming and stressful! Anyway, we had some bananas that were over ripe so I thought it was the right time to bake. I'm not a fan of banana bread so I changed the recipe, the original recipe can be found, here.

  • 1 cup of white granulated sugar 
  • 3 ripe bananas 
  • 1/2 cup of sunflower oil
  • 2 cups of plain white flour  
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda 
  •  1 medium egg 
  • 1 tablespoon of ground/powdered cinnamon  

Step One: Pre-heat your oven to 170 celsius (for the fan setting) and place muffin/cupcake cases into a muffin tin ready for the mixture. I used fairly large cupcake cases that were quite sturdy as the mixture is quite thick.

Step Two: Combine the sugar, sunflower oil and the egg in a bowl. I used my Kitchenaid so there was no mess and it was SO quick and easy! Combine all three ingredients until it is smooth, yellow and fully mixed together.

Step Three: Mash the bananas with a fork, I used bananas that weren't overly ripe and I added them a little at a time so they were incorporated into the mixture easier and smoother but you will still get little chunks in the mixture which is fine! Add in as much cinnamon as you like, I used about a tablespoon as I love cinnamon but I will add a bit more next time.

Step Four: Sift in the flour, salt and bicarbonate of soda into the banana, sugar, oil and egg mixture (I made it sound so appetising, I know) and mix well!

Step Five: Spoon the mixture into the cases until they are just over half full and bake for 30 to 40 minutes. Insert a toothpick or cake tester into the muffins to see if they are cooked through - they will be if the toothpick/tester comes out of the muffin clean. Wait to cool before eating, even though it won't be easy as they make the house smell SO good!
As I said, I'm not a massive fan of banana bread but I really liked these and they are so incredibly quick and easy to make. They don't contain butter which is another plus and the mixture made about 22 for me but it will vary depending on the size of cupcake/muffin cases you use. They aren't super light and fluffy as they do contain mashed up banana in them but they definitely aren't dense or heavy either. They are so tasty, comforting and great as a snack or part of your breakfast. They are suitable for vegetarians but they are not suitable for vegans. The addition of cinnamon makes them perfect for me!

Have you made cinnamon banana bread muffins before? What have you been baking recently? Will you try this recipe? 

Indigo Herbs Super Cleanse Tea

Saturday, June 25, 2016
Indigo Herbs Super Cleanse Tea
I've tried a few products from Indigo Herbs and I've been really happy with everything I've kindly been sent, especially the amazing Raw Vegan Chocolate Kit which I cannot recommend enough! I'm always interested in trying new/different products and when this tea arrived, I was excited to give it a go.

I'm trying to switch back to a more vegan diet and to reduce the amount of caffeine I drink so herbal teas are an essential for me. I have the *Indigo Herbs Super Cleanse Tea (£3.99, 50g) which contains fennel seed, liquorice root, nettle leaf, dandelion leaf, red clover leaf and ginger power. It is suitable for vegans, it contains 100% pure ingredients and it is a loose tea.

I use my adorable squirrel tea infuser with my loose tea; I love this herbal tea! Sometimes herbal tea can be really bitter but this one isn't and I adore it. I do get an after taste of aniseed/liquorice which I personally like but I don't think it will be for everyone but it does add a earthy warm to the tea. It's comforting, warming and soothing but there's no caffeine as there are no actual tea leaves in it. I cannot recommend it enough! Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5.

Have you tried anything from Indigo Herbs/Indigo Nutrition? Do you drink tea, if so what's your favourite flavour? 

Book Review: This Savage Song

Thursday, June 23, 2016
Book Review: This Savage Song
I've heard nothing but amazing things about Victoria Schwab's books from bloggers and youtubers so when *This Savage Song (£7.99, paperback) arrived from the super lovely people at Titan Books, I was so excited to give it a go and it didn't disappoint. Although now I want to read everything she has written, sorry bank balance! 

The book follows rule breaker and badass, Kate Harker, who is the daughter of the powerful and ruthless Callum Harker, the ruler of North City and August Flynn, a shy and complicated teen with a powerful and unnatural secret who is the son of Harry Flynn, the ruler of South City. Cities are falling apart, fighting for survival is a daily struggle and a tenuous truce is about to crumble, oh and monsters are real. Yeah. 

As I've never read anything by Victoria Schwab so I didn't know if I would get on with her writing style but it was apparent from the first few pages that I loved her writing and the story. Her writing style is so incredibly easy to read, follow and I finished the book in just over a day; it wasn't an over complex storyline and her writing just flows so easily as you read. 

The story is action packed, fast paced and engaging. I loved most of the characters, especially August and I loved the monsters too! I did like Kate, although I found her a bit annoying at times. The world and the characters felt familiar to me even though I haven't really read anything like this and the types of monsters was a unique point about the book. I though the abilities the monsters have was such an interesting point and different to anything I've read before. I cannot wait for the second book as the ending did leave questions unanswered and I want a certain two characters to get together (even though I have no idea how that would work). 

I don't know if this is going to make sense but I thought the book would be potentially complex, such as The Bone Season, but it isn't; the world, the characters and the storyline is like a breathe of fresh air! There is a refreshing clarity to her writing that not only makes you want to read on but it pulls you into the story and the struggles of the characters with such ease and simplicity, you feel like you've been in the world before and you want to know more. Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5. 

Have you read This Savage Song or anything else by V.E Schwab? What are you currently reading?

Book Review: A Graphic Cosmogony

Wednesday, June 22, 2016
Book Review: A Graphic Cosmogony
I can't believe that it's now summer, the year is going by so quickly and my reading challenge for the year is actually complete! I aimed to read 30 books in 2016 and I am currently on book no. 33 so I'm going to up my reading goal to 50 books in 2016.

I have already reviewed a couple of gorgeous books from the lovely people at Nobrow and I was kindly sent another graphic novel; I have *A Graphic Cosmogony (£24) which is a collection of tales of the creation of everything by 24 artists including Luke Best, Andrew Rae and Robert Hunter, the latter wrote The New Ghost which I reviewed a couple of months ago.
Book Review: A Graphic Cosmogony
The cover of the book is so beautiful and so different to anything else on my bookshelves; I think it would make a fantastic gift for book lovers and graphic novel lovers. Also it would make a unique and thought provoking coffee table book too. The majority of the artwork is so unique, colourful and interesting, as are all of the stories, some of which I love more than others but all of them have an interesting take on various creation stories and ideas. My favourite stories were: Luna by Robert Hunter, Pilgrims by Jon Mcaught, New Game by Luke Pearson and my favourite of all, Deity School by Andrew Rae.

Overall, I think this is a beautifully published collection of stories by fantastically talented artists and illustrators that are unique and thought provoking about a topic that has been pondered for the whole of human history. I can't recommend it enough, overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5!

Have you bought anything from Nobrow? What are you currently reading? Have you read any graphic novels? 

We Are Little's Infused Coffee

Sunday, June 19, 2016
We Are Little's Infused Coffee
If you know me in 'real life' you will know that I'm a big coffee drinker, I'm one of those people who put off doing anything productive until I've had my coffee *in other words procrastinating until caffeine is ingested*. I have a latte a day, most of the time it will be a gingerbread latte as they are life but I do want to try more flavours, enter We Are Little's.

I was very, very kindly sent the *We Are Little's Mix and Match Flavour Infused Instant Coffee (£15) which contains six flavoured coffee variations, all of which are in 50g jars. I first have to say how much I freakin' adore the branding and packaging, it's gorgeous! The coffee doesn't contain added sugar and they all contain 100% natural flavours; also they're only 4 calories per serving.

We Are Little's Spicy Cardamom Coffee (£2.75 each)
This coffee flavour is the one I was most excited for as, firstly, it sounds so interesting and unique and secondly, I make a Finnish bread (called Pulla bread) which contains cardamom and I eat with it my coffee for lunch and this combination of coffee and cardamom is already a favourite of mine. It smells amazing and it tastes so good but I did have to add sugar as otherwise it is quite bitter. Myself and my dad really liked this one even though it definitely isn't a typical flavour combination. Overall rating: ★★★★☆, 4/5.

We Are Little's French Vanilla Coffee (£2.75 each)
I think this flavour is one of my favourite from the six that I have tried (although they have more flavours if you aren't interested in these such as chocolate orange, chocolate caramel, havana rum and maple walnut, the latter two sound amazing). This coffee flavour is one of the sweeter flavours and it really creamy and comforting. Overall rating: ★★★★☆, 4/5.

We Are Little's Coconut Coffee (£2.75 each)
Yet another unusual flavour, I don't think I've ever heard of a coconut flavoured coffee before! I think these jars or mix and match sets would make perfect and unusual gifts. I didn't know how I would feel about this one, although I love both coffee and coconut and I was pleasantly surprised; it does have a coconut flavour but it isn't like drinking coconut water. I really liked this one, it wasn't bitter and I think it would be great as an iced coffee. My dad really didn't like this one though so it won't be for everyone. Overall rating: ★★★☆☆, 3/5.

We Are Little's Rich Hazelnut Coffee (£2.75 each)
Now we are back on more familiar ground which a hazelnut infused coffee which I think is one of the more traditional coffee combinations but sadly it wasn't for me. I love hazelnut spread, like the heaven that is Nutella, but I don't like it in anything else. It was a little bitter and a bit cloying, to me but this was one of my dads favourites from the six we tested out as he rated it 4/5.  Overall rating: ★★☆☆☆, 2/5.

We Are Little's Cafe Amaretto (£2.75)
Again, as with the previous one, this isn't my kind of thing and I also found this one bitter, really rich and too much for me, if that even makes any sense! It has a almond flavour which I really don't like so this one was never going to be a hit for me unfortunately but I know my auntie will love it. Overall rating: ★★☆☆☆, 2/5.

We Are Little's Swiss Chocolate Coffee (£2.75)
The smell of this variety in the jar is amazing so I couldn't wait to try it and it didn't disappoint. This flavour was mine and my dads favourite from the range. It isn't bitter, it's creamy and it is fairly sweet too. I think it will be perfect in the colder months, while the coconut coffee will be perfect for summer as it will make a gorgeous iced coffee. Overall rating: ★★★★☆, 4/5.

Overall, I adore the packaging/branding, I think the flavour range is fantastic which some traditional combinations and some more unique ones. My favourites have to be: swiss chocolate, french vanilla, cardamom and coconut. There were a couple of flavourites...I've just invented a new word, a combination of favourite and flavours, that I didn't like but that's just personal preference. I think they'd make amazing gifts for coffee lovers and the price is fantastic too!

Do you drink coffee? If so, which of these would you like to try? Have you tried any of the We Are Little's coffee flavours? 

Zaful Wish List

Friday, June 17, 2016
There are so many mid-season sales on now that I have managed to spend quite a lot of money on books, homeware and randomness that I don't need but really really want! The need to spend is so high and to try and calm the spending bug, I have a wish list post *although it probably won't work, oh well*.

Denim Dress  -  Slogan Tee  -  Stripe Tee  -  Boots  -  Bag

I've worked with Zaful before and I'm always impressed with the massive range of clothing and accessories - there are so many cute and really unique bags on their site as well as amazing tees and dresses! 

What do you think of my Zaful wish list? Will you also be spending too much money in the current sales...let it not just be me!? 

*Pamper Products Wish List

Wednesday, June 15, 2016
Pamper Products Wish List
Since I started learning to drive last month with the theory test, which isn't nearly as bad as I thought it would be, I've been really stressed and tried so I haven't been having pamper nights at all. I'm usually good at keeping on track with regular face masks, hair masks and pampering but my skin is definitely suffering from a lack of pampering.

Also with summer almost here, I need to start pampering ASAP and in my mind that means a shopping spree *I'll take any excuse*. Here's my pamper wish list:

Aromatherapy Associates Inner Strength Rollerball (£16)  -  Aromatherapy Associates Perfect Partners (£19)  -  Bliss Hide & Glow Sleek Tinted Body Spray  -  Bliss Hot Salt Scrub  -  Kure Bazaar Nail Polish  -  Bliss Cassis and Sandalwood Body Butter

I have tried a few products from both Aromatherapy Associates and Bliss World, all of which I have loved. The Bliss orange and white pepper body butter is just gorgeous and their firming/slimming range sounds amazing so I definitely want to give it a go! This is a collaborative post with Bliss World.

What products are on your wish list? What are your favourite pamper products? 

Sukin Skincare ft. My Pure

Tuesday, June 14, 2016
Sukin Skincare ft. My Pure
I find it so difficult to find skincare products that suit my sensitive, dry and temperamental skin but thanks to my blog, I've been able to find quite a few brands that I freakin' love including: Antipodes, Rodial, Supermood and now Sukin.

*Sukin Hydrating Mist Toner (£8.12, 125ml)
I love facial mists and spray toners so obviously I chose this product to review and I haven't tried anything from Sukin's skincare range but I always hear great things so I wanted to try it for myself. The toner contains chamomile and rosewater to soothe the skin and it doesn't contain parabens or alcohol, the latter can dry out the skin which is not what my already dry skin needs.

It can be used as a toner or as a facial mist and I've been using it both ways, although while I really like the product, I wish the spray was finer as it can be like being in a water fight when I use this! The toner smells so nice, it's refreshing and it doesn't irritate my skin at all which is fantastic. I can't recommend it enough, as I said the only negative is that the spray isn't very fine. Overall rating: ★★★★☆, 4/5.

*Sukin Calming Night Cream (£16.28, 120ml)
As well as facial mists, I also love trying out night creams as my skin can sometimes be so dry that I have to use a serum and a night cream during the day. The night cream contains rosehip, aloe, cucumber, evening primrose oils and lots of other fantastic ingredients. It doesn't contains parabens, SLS, fragrance, mineral oils or any other nasty ingredients that some skincare can. The company is also against animal testing and the products are 100% vegan!

The night cream is thick but it applies easily and it absorbs so quickly which I wasn't expecting. I have quite a few night creams and thicker day creams but none like this as it is so fast absorbing and it doesn't leave a heavy or greasy residue on the skin as most can. It's very moisturising and smoothing but it leaves my skin looking like skin, not a greasy mess. Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5!

Have you tried anything from Sukin? Have you bought anything from My Pure? 

Book Review: Soft In The Head by Marie-Sabine Roger

Monday, June 13, 2016
Book Review: Soft In The Head by Marie-Sabine Roger
Another day, another book review and this one was very kindly sent for review by the super lovely people at Pushkin Press! I thought that I was more of a fantasy, mystery, magical realism and classic book reader but I actually think I'm more of an eclectic reader as I loved this book. So if like me you don't think a genre is particularly for you, just give it a go and you might be pleasantly surprised. 

His mother called him a worthless halfwit while his fellow drunks at the local bar ensure he's the butt of all their jokes. He spends his days whittling wood, counting pigeons and adding his own name to the bottom of the list on the town war memorial. So how could Germain possibly understand what a casual encounter on a park bench with eighty-five year old Margueritte could mean? In this touchingly comic tale of an unusual friendship, that first conversation opens a door into a world Germain could never have imagined-the world of books and ideas-and gives both him and Margueritte a chance at a happiness they thought had passed them by.

*Soft In The Head (£8.99) is Marie-Sabine Roger's first adult novel and the award winning translator is Frank Wynne. The book is 224 pages, it's published by Pushkin Press and it was adapted into the film, My Afternoons with Margueritte in 2010 which I'll definitely have to watch! 

The book follows Germain, a man who's life hasn't been a walk in the park...well a walk in the park with diversions, potholes, pigeons and a load of ungrateful and rude people but one day he comes across an elderly woman who changes his lives for the better. I loved the relationship between the somewhat naive and single minded Germain and the well read, sweet and intelligent Margueritte; their relationship is an unlikely one but it leads to a mutually loving and endearing friendship that demonstrates how books can bring people together and that you never know how new relationships could affect your life. The writing is quick and easy to read but it has a directness that I think shows the directness of Germain and I think it also shows life in a unguarded and raw form rather than sugar coating the more difficult and ugly parts of Germain's life. I read the book in a  day as it's such a quick read but the story will stay with me for much, much longer. I adored the ending, it was so incredibly sweet and I wish I could gush about it but I obviously don't want to give anything away. 

Overall, I love the cover and the writing style as well as the storyline, it's such a heartwarming and endearing story of the power of books, friendship and how you never know what life if going to throw at you, it might be the best thing that has happened. The book will be released on the 23rd June and I can't recommend it enough! Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5. 

Will you be picking up this book? What are you currently reading? 

High End Lipstick Collection + Swatches

Sunday, June 12, 2016
I have a large lipstick collection but they are mainly drugstore lipsticks but I do have a few higher end products from Shu Uemura, ByTerry, Mac, Bare Minerals, Burberry, L'Occitane and Nars! The swatch is on the left and the corresponding lipstick on the right! Mac 'Till Tomorrow' is pinker and lighter than it looks in the tube sadly - actually most of the shades look lighter on my lips than they look in the tube which is really annoying!
All of my higher end lipsticks tend to be nudes, rosy shades and peachy tones although Mac 'creme in your coffee' is the darkest, plum shade I have. My favourite shades from this collection include: Nars 'dolce vita', Mac 'till tomorrow', Shu Uemura BG930 and Burberry Lip Cover No.02 Cameo. The formula and texture of the Burberry lip covers/lip velvets, Nars velvet matte lip pencils and the Shu Uemura lipsticks are gorgeous. 

Do you have any of these shades? Do you like these type of posts? 

Blogger Problems

Saturday, June 11, 2016
Being a blogger can be, among other things, an amazing creative outlet, a fun and engaging hobby, a way of meeting new and like-minded people and it can also open so many doors, not only because of working with brands/PRs, reviewing products, receiving products before they are even available to buy *this is one of my favourite things and makes me feel so special!* and opportunities to write for brands/PRs or it could open new career options. However, as with many things in life, the positives come with negatives. Here are my #BloggerProblems:

1. So many photos: I mean this in terms of space on my iMac and also because I feel the need to take at least one hundred photographs of whatever it is and then I only use a couple of them. Hence the photographs above, including the ever present bloopers.

2. Spam emails: This is a big problem that I think most people face, if you have an email address that is. I don't know if the people/companies that send spam emails know how incredibly annoying and frustrating they can be. Example: "I've noticed you have a few spelling mistakes *quote/link from a post I wrote three years ago*, pay me X and I'll point out the mistakes"....delete.

3. Rude PR's: Now, I have to start by saying that 98% of the PRs that have contacted me or that I've worked with have been so incredibly kind, friendly and generally just so pleasant but there are a very small number of PRs that are so rude, expecting posts/links/advertising for nothing at all - it doesn't work that way, the relationship between brands/PR's and bloggers or freelancers should be an equal one.

4. Too much to write about and not enough time: Increasingly I have noticed more 'blogging tips' and 'blog post ideas' posts going around which I personally hate! But I don't understand the 'blog post ideas' posts as I am never without blog post ideas. I have so many post ideas, the thing I lack is the time and energy to write them all.

5. Making yourself heard: I started my blog back in 2012 when, to me at least, there were hardly any bloggers out there and bloggers very rarely worked with brands but now that is definitely a thing of the past. There are more and more bloggers every day, it seems, which is a good thing but it also dilutes the opportunities available and it makes it SO difficult to make your blog seen in a sea of other blogs. I think the popularity of blogging is a double edged sword as it is great that it is being noticed as a genuine and very popular form of information, advertising and advice but it is also making it harder for bloggers to be new, different and simply to be recognised.

There are just a few of the #BloggerProblems out there! Let me know in the comments below, what are the blogger problems you face? If you want other one of these posts, let me know and I'll write it as soon as I can! 

April + May Beauty Favourites 2016

Friday, June 10, 2016
April + May Beauty Favourites 2016
I haven't published a beauty favourites post for ages so this will be a culmination of my April and May beauty favourites...even though it's almost half way through June, oops! Some of these products are new discoveries and others are products that I've loved for a year or more.

My favourite product that I've discovered so far this year is the Vichy Dermablend Setting Powder which is probably the best setting powder I've ever tried. It is so lightweight but it helps mattify the skin without ever looking dry, caky or noticeable on the skin. It's perfect and I've been using it every time I wear makeup. Next up is another product I've been using constantly and I'm so surprised I haven't run out of it yet, as I use it so much, is the Max Factor Smooth Effect Foundation - I think it is discontinued but you can still buy it online. It's the best foundation I've come across, especially for dry/very dry skin, as it doesn't emphasis flakiness or dryness so naturally it's my go to foundation.

April and May have been great months for quick, easy and reliable products for me and the Benefit Gimme Brow is definitely all of those! I've pretty much run out of it but I can't part with it as it makes filling in my brows a few seconds job instead of it taking minutes. I want to try the Essence version so if anyone has tried it, let me know in the comments! My penultimate makeup item is the new(ish) Freedom Pro Studio Strobe Cream which is perfect for adding to your foundation as it is very subtle but it gives my skin a gorgeous natural radiance. Lastly, the Too Faced Hangover Primer which I received months and month ago and I've been using it consistency since then - it is a silicone free primer which is great for me as I don't like the feeling of silicone primers on my skin. It helps my makeup last and it doesn't irritate my eczema, win win.
April + May Beauty Favourites 2016
I don't really have any body, nail, hair or fragrance favourites, apart from the gorgeous Bodhi and Birch Ylang Ylang Incensa Shower Gel and the Molton Brown Ylang Ylang Lotion but I'll talk about them more in the June favourites.

I do have two skincare favourites though, the first of which is a long term favourite of mine, the Jurlique Balancing Mist which I sadly finished a couple of weeks ago and I definitely need another as the weather has been so hot recently which is so odd for Manchester and the Jurlique mist is the perfect refresher and hydrator. Lastly for my April and May beauty favourites, the Dermalogica Super Sensitive Shield which I'm surprised I like as much as I do because my skin can be a bit sensitive to SPF but it's fine with this. I do always tend to forget to apply SPF but I'm been using this in place of my primer on sunny days and even though I don't know if it's working, it feels good to protect my skin...if that makes any sense at all!

What beauty products have you been loving in April or May? 

*Random Acts Of Kindness ft. Tesco Flowers

Wednesday, June 08, 2016
Random Acts Of Kindness ft. Tesco Flowers
Images from Tesco
When I was a child and a teenager actually, I never really understood why my mum and my aunties always loved receiving flowers for their birthdays, mother's day or as a thank you but now, I completely understand as having a bouquet of beautiful flowers in the house can not only make the room look fresher and summery but it always has such an uplifting effect on your mood and outlook. Also as a blogger I love flowers as they make pretty and easy photograph backgrounds! #BloggerProblems

I love receiving flowers as does my mum so I would have to nominate her for my random act of kindness as even though sometimes most of the time she can drive me crazy, she is always so loving, supportive and funny...in her own very unique and embarrassing way! She loves flowers, plants and gardening in general as she took a few horticulture classes at college a few years ago so I'm sure she'd love any bouquet or plant as a gift but I'd have chose the colourful and summery Tesco Finest Pink Oriental Lily Bouquet (£30) for her.

The lily bouquet is just gorgeous, I love the bright pink petals and more unusual shape...also it would look great as a photo background, just sayin'. That's the problem with being a blogger, flowers don't last long in the living room or kitchen - they always mysteriously end up in my office. All of the Tesco flower arrangements come with plant food, presentation box, personalised message and best of all, a free glass vase - it's the perfect gift!

I think it would be great if we all performed an act of kindness as often as we can, whether it's helping a friend decorate, passing on items we don't need, baking a cake and sharing it with neighbours or giving a gorgeous bouquet of flowers to someone special! This is a post inspired by Tesco Flowers.

Who would you nominate? Do you love receiving flowers? What's your favourite bouquet from the Tesco Flowers range? 

New In: Linea Baking & Homeware

Tuesday, June 07, 2016
New In: Linea Baking & Homeware
Some people relax by playing video games, gardening, meditating or painting. Me? I bake up a storm and eat half of what I've made instantly...yeah. Baking and cooking for the most part is so relaxing and calming to me and you get something yummy to eat at the end of it, win win. My mum is the same which explains why we have a massive cupboard full of baking tools, cases, tins, icing and more so when this packaged arrived we were both very excited!

House of Fraser is a store that I always look in for homeware, sales and beauty products but I've never really tried anything from the Linea range until now. The Linea range is a great value range and to be honest, I didn't expect the products to be as gorgeously designed and as really high quality as the products I received are. I was very, very kindly sent a range of products from House of Fraser including Linea and Dickins & Jones.

*Linea Home Queen Bee Double Oven Glove (£16) 
How freakin' cute and gorgeous is this design! I love the range I received mostly because it is very bee themed and features a beautiful mint, purple and white colour combination which I love! You can't see from the photo above *sorry* but the inside of pattern is the same as the mint bee tea towel below. The range matches perfectly and together it looks so cute. I think they would make a fantastic gift for anyone who loves baking, cooking and gorgeous homeware.

*Linea Home Queen Bee Apron (£16)
Obviously I had to forgot to photograph one item *cries*, I received a super cute apron which is also from the Queen Bee range from Linea. I'm not a fan of aprons, I don't know why but I never use them as they just get in the way and I'm not that clumsy in the kitchen but I have to admit that this one is gorgeous. It has a huge pocket on the front which I love but I don't think I'll be using it as it is fairly long and I'm tiny but I know my auntie will adore this apron so she'll be receiving it.
New In: Linea Baking & Homeware
*Linea Home Queen Bee Set of Three Tea Towels (£14)
Again, I adore the print as does everyone else! The set has three different prints that match the sections of the oven glove. The mint and bee print is definitely my favourite of the three, closely followed by the purple 'queen bee of the kitchen' print/design. The tea towels are huge and they are 100% cotton. I think this set would be great as part of a baking/cooking hamper!

*Linea Home Sky Blue Retro Timer (£15)
Staying with the pastel and adorable theme, I also received this cute timer which reminds of an american diner in the 1950's, maybe that's just me! We don't actually have a timer, maybe that's why I struggle with timings of my bakes...oops. I love the sky blue colour and design and it's magnetic too so it can stick onto the fridge.
New In: Linea Baking & Homeware
New In: Linea Baking & Homeware
*Dickens & Jones Milk Bottle Measuring Cups (£20)
These measuring cups are probably my favourite item I was sent as the measuring cups when stacked look like an adorable mint green and cream milk bottle design...yes, I love it and it's so cute. In England we don't really use cup measurements, it's more of an American thing but since I started incorporating more vegan recipes into my daily life, I find that I'm using cup measurements so much more as pretty much all of the vegan recipes I try are from American bloggers/websites. I know I'm going to get so much use of the these measuring cups which come in 1/4 cup, 1/3 cup, 1/2 cup and a whole cup measurements. They look so cute when stacked and act as functional decor almost.

Overall, I adore the homeware and baking items I received, especially the cute milk bottle measuring cups! The queen bee design throughout the range is so summery, gorgeous and it fits with our kitchen decor really well in terms of the colour scheme. I didn't know what to expect with the quality as the Linea range is a more reasonably priced but I'm really impressed and I cannot recommend these items enough. Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5.

What do you think of the Linea range? Have you tried anything from the House of Fraser homeware range? 

Roksanda X Lancome GWP

Sunday, June 05, 2016
Roksanda X Lancome GWP

When it comes to high end makeup, skincare and perfume, one of the brands that I always go back to is Lancome. I have tried a few of their skincare products and I love the cleansing milk; I also adore their perfumes, especially the Tresor Midnight Rose fragrance. One point that I love about Lancome, besides the gorgeously minimal packaging, is the constant supply of amazing and generous free gift with purchase options. I've been able to try so many Lancome products that I wouldn't have tried before because of their GWP sets over the years.

Lancome have collaborated with the designer Roksanda for this gorgeous gift with purchase which includes a fun, cute and colourful makeup bag - until most makeup bags, it's actually really spacious so it can fit everything I need want in it! The gift with purchase is available at Harvey Nichols when you spend £29 on Lancome products and it also includes:

- Hydrazen Anti-Stress Moisturising Cream SPF 15 (15ml)
- Hypnose Volume Mascara (Black, 2ml)
- La Base Pro Pore Eraser (5ml)
- L'Absolu Rouge in BX06

My favourite product from the GWP set has to be the lipstick, it reminds me of the mini lipsticks Avon used to have but far, far more elegant! The shade is a gorgeous dusky rose shade, it looks brighter on the lips than it does in the tube and even though it has shimmer, it doesn't make the lipstick look dated or unwearable. I rarely go through a full tube of lipstick so mini versions are fantastic and they looks so freakin' adorable. I have tried the Hypnose Volume Mascara before and I loved it and I've also tried the full size Lancome Hydrazen Moisturiser before too and I really liked it too.
Roksanda X Lancome GWP
Additionally I was very kindly sent the *Lancome Grandiose Mascara (£25, 01) which I have wanted to try for so long! It has to be the most beautifully packaged mascara ever, fact. The wand is also unusual as it has a bend in it, I hope it is easy to see in the video below; the bend in the wand makes the mascara so easy to use which I wasn't expecting. The formula is quite wet which I don't usually like but I love this mascara as for me it is very black, lengthening and volumising. Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5.

I was also sent the much raved about *Lancome Miracle Cushion Foundation (£30) in the shade 02 which is a relatively good match for me but a shade lighter would have been perfect! The foundation is described as fresh, dewy, hydrating and weightless and after using it for a few days I can definitely say that it is. I will have a full review of the foundation on my blog within the next couple of weeks but so far I'm loving it! I'm feeling quite spoilt by the super lovely people at Lancome!

This offer ends on the 8th June so go, go, go! 

Will you be picking up this gift with purchase? Have you tried any of these products? 

April and May Book Reviews

Saturday, June 04, 2016
April and May Book Reviews
How is it June already, what is happening *I know I say this in every monthly roundup post but I can't help it*. I have two books here that I read in the last couple of days of March, when I didn't think I would finish one book, let alone two so they should be in my March Book Review Roundup post but here they are; along with seven books that I read in the month of April.

Harry Potter & The Philosopher's Stone by J.K. Rowling 
The Harry Potter film series is one of my favourite ever but I have only read one of the books (the Deathly Hallows) so I wanted to read the series. Before I read this book, I was putting it off for a while because I already know the story so well as I've watched the film approximately 2,100 times *not a complete exaggeration*. But I was SO pleasantly surprised, I adore her writing as I did with The Cuckoo's Calling and even though I know the story, there was so much in this book that isn't in the film such as a whole section on Norbert the dragon and the enhanced forest that was in part missed out of the film. If you've watched the films and didn't want to read the books because you know the story, think again and definitely pick up the books! Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5.

Harry Potter & The Chamber Of Secrets by J.K. Rowling
I adored the book even though I already know the basic story as I love the films. I love the rubberised covers of the editions I have! While the overall story is the same, there are quite a few differences from the film; for example, there is a section on nearly headless Nick's deathday and valentines day which aren't in the film. Also Professor Mcgonagall explained what the chamber of secrets is but in the book it is Professor Binns and a new term emerged from the books which isn't in the films - 'squibs' which is the term for a person born into the wizarding world with no magical powers. Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5.

*My Map Of You By Isabelle Broom 
This is one of the books that I read in March; I was kindly sent this advanced readers copy in March and it was the first book I've been sent to review, so thank you Penguin Random House! It is a contemporary romance book which usually aren't the genres I want to read but I loved this book. It is a entertaining, heartwarming family mystery with romance and it made me want to visit Greece ASAP. I already have a full review of this book on my blog so if you want an in-depth review check it out. Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5.

The Shadow Queen by C.J. Redwine 
I am a sucker for book covers and this one is so damn gorgeous and the plot sounded interesting. I read reviews before I bought it, as I do with pretty much everything and it's apparently a snow white retelling but I think it was definitely a loose retelling! The book has magic, action, adventure, vengeance, angsty teen romance, family tragedy and best of all...dragons! The book was so easy to read, I loved the characters (especially Loreli and Kai) and I adored the different perspectives that you get, from the evil queen, the main characters, Kols dragon side and Loreli's gyrfalcon. I cannot recommend this book enough and I loved the ending! Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5.

Stranded by Val McDermid 
I bought this book on The Works as it was SO cheap; until this book I hadn't read anything from this author and I really didn't know anything about this book so it was such a surprise when quite a few of the short stories were based in or around Manchester, the city I was born and live in! The book really wasn't what I thought it would be; some of the stories are dark and disturbing but others are a bit meh. However, I went through this book SO quickly, I enjoyed it and I have already bought another book from this author as I love her easy writing style. I would have to say that you should be wary of the themes in this book as it does deal with HIV, death, crime, sexual relationships and dysfunctional relationships and abuse so it won't be for everyone and I was quite shocked and disturbed by some of the short stories. Overall rating: ★★★★☆, 4/5.

Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige 
I picked this up in Waterstones without reading any reviews and I'm so glad that I did as I loved it. It is a book about what happened after the traditional Wizard of Oz story where Dorothy goes back to OZ and the world is turned upside down; good characters are now evil and it is a lot darker than the traditional story. I loved the writing, it is so easy to read and I did not want to put it down! I haven't ever been a fan of The Wizard of Oz but this is amazing. I have the second book and I will be buying the third. Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5.

*Findo's Mousetrap by Gareth Paskett
I have a full review of this book on my blog already, it was more like a rant as I thought the book could have been 10x better than it was. The premise and main device/machine in the book was so unique and interesting but instead of focusing on that, it focused on a somewhat unrealistic (in terms of the timeframe) and cheesy romance. The writing style is a blunt in places and there are no chapters which is odd but overall the story was entertaining and I loved the heartwarming ending. Themes of sexual harassment, illness, dysfunctional relationships and history. Overall rating: ★★★☆☆, 3/5.

*Not Working by Lisa Owens 
Again, another book that I've already reviewed on my blog and another book that I was sent for review - thank you Pan Macmillan! I adore the cover, it's minimal and so bright and we all know, I love a cute book cover. Yet another book that I loved and read so quickly; the story and main character was SO relatable *scary relatable* so I think it will appeal to so many readers. There were a couple of characters that were a bit annoying and some of the interactions/conversations were a little frustrating too but overall it is a funny and unique book. I also liked the structure of the book as it's written in a snippet of thoughts kind of way which I haven't experienced before. Overall rating: ★★★★☆, 4/5.

*TruthWitch by Susan Dennard 
I have heard so many good things about this book by American youtubers so I was excited when it arrived; I love the cover and any book with themes of magic and I'm all for it! The story has a range of amazing and strong female characters as well as an interesting and unique magic system, swashbuckling sailors, royal power play and a slow burning angsty romance. I wasn't completely happy with the ending as it left a lot of questions unanswered so I can't wait for the next book! Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5.
April and May Book Reviews
- The Haunted Hotel by Wilkie Collins
I have wanted to read some classics for a while but I think that understandably it is quite a daunting task! However, I came across Wilkie Collins on one of my many browses through the book section of Amazon and I'm so glad I bought this book. It's published by Vintage Publishing and it looks so gorgeous! It was first published in 1889. The story has themes of murder, crime, revenge and a very slow burning Victorian romance although that is a very small part of the book. The story follows a handful of main characters as well as quite a few others and in some places it was a little bit difficult to keep track of the various characters relations and hierarchy to one another. It's the first classic I've read and I thought that it wouldn't be very accessible but I was wrong! Yes, the language is quite different to the language in contemporary books but it is easy to read, quick and for the most part it is very easy to understand. I managed to read the book in a couple of days and I do really like his writing style but I wasn't quite as blown away by this book as I hoped I would be; however I will be buying more of his works. I found a couple of the characters such as Countess Narona and Agnes were very vivid and interesting but the others weren't so much so I didn't end up connecting with most of the characters apart from a couple. Overall it was an interesting book and I'm very glad that I read it however it wasn't nearly as mysterious, dark or complex as I thought it would be. Overall rating: ★★★★☆, 4/5. 

- Dead Man Talking by Roddy Doyle
This is the only book that I read on my kindle app this month and it is one of the quick reads – I think it was only 99p or less. I didn't know anything about the author or the book before I started it so I didn't know what to expect and overall I was very disappointed! The story follows one character and his wife as well as his friend who has just died. It isn't a complex story at all although it does have a twist – I found it a bit boring and annoying in places. The writing style is very blunt although that might be how it was intended to be written. It was very short, I read it in about 30 minutes but I wish I hadn't, I just didn't get on with it and it didn't make any impression on me. So for that reason I can't really recommend it! Overall rating: ★☆☆☆☆, 1/5. 

- Mort by Terry Pratchett
I have wanted to read and watch Terry Pratchett's works for a while especially since I watched his TV show Going Postal and loved it! However, his books total over 40 so I didn't know where to start! I watched a few videos on YouTube about his discworld series and everyone said that you don't need to read the books in order as there are series within series so I started with the one that looked the most interesting – the death series beginning with Mort. Since I hadn't read any of his books before I did find some of the terminology and the world a little bit confusing but it was easy to get into and the writing style reminded me of J.K. Rowling in that it is quick, easy and almost comforting to read, if that makes any sense! The writing style to me is quite witty, philosophical and tongue in cheek which I like! Overall I like the story and the characters as well as the world but I wasn't blown away like I thought I would be – the same feeling I had with The Haunted Hotel, maybe I had to high expectations of both. I found that quite a few of the characters, to me weren't very padded out - it seems to be more about the world rather than the character building so I only really connected with a few of the characters. The world to me is really whimsical and unique so I will definitely be picking up the next book in the series. Overall rating: ★★★★☆, 4/5. 

- The Woman in Black by Susan Hill
I've wanted to read this book since I knew that it was made into a film starring Daniel Radcliffe, which I haven't seen, so when I came across this freakin gorgeous cover (see a better photo of it on my Instagram) I had to buy it. The only things I knew about this story were that it involved a lawyer, a old creepy house and that it was in the horror genre. The writing style I almost instantly got on with, it is so incredibly easy and quick to read which I wasn't expecting but I flew through it in just over a day. The book starts with Arthur, the main character and narrator, with his family and he ends up writing about his experiences about when he was younger which involved a trip up north to Eel Marsh House. The writing is gorgeous, I love it and I definitely need to read more of Susan Hill's books even just solely because of her writing style. The characters aren't really fleshed out, especially as it is a short book at just over 200 pages so I didn't connect with them that much although they are easy to imagine and follow. The storyline on the other hand is not completely what I expected, yes, there are amazing sections in the book building up tension and gorgeously descriptive and atmospheric sections too but overall I was a little disappointed. The book was no where near as horror filled or as scary as I thought it would be, although as I said in some places it is very spooky and atmospheric but not scary. I did enjoy the book but my main problem was with the main character, Arthur, who is a bit of a boring character to me and his decisions were a bit idiotic and contradictory. For example (maybe don't read this last section if you haven't read the book!), Arthur has some creepy experiences at the house, then he vows never to go back, then he goes back and has more creepy experiences and then he doesn't want to go back alone, then he goes back - you get my point, it's repetitive and to me it makes Arthur unrealistic and less believable. Overall rating: ★★★☆☆, 3/5. 

- *The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon 
I've already reviewed this book so I will keep this very brief but I just want to say how much I adore this book! It isn't want I expected, it isn't something I'd usually reach for but it's one of my favourite books from this year. The world is vivid, if a bit complex and the characters are believable and endearing. The 'magic' system in this world is unique and amazing. I cannot explain it well (sorry!) but I cannot recommend it enough! Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5.

- The Mine Order by Samantha Shannon 
This is the second book in The Bone Season series and as with the first book, I love the cover, I love the writing style and I adore the world/characters. It goes on directly from the end of the first book and it is really fast paced for most of the book. I love the main characters relationships and there is a twist at the end which I kind of predicted but I still loved it. I don't think I like this book as much as I loved the first book but it was still incredibly enjoyable and entertaining - you need to buy this series now! Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5!

- *The New Ghost by Robert Hunter 
This is the first graphic novel I have read and I adore it! I already have a full review of this beautiful graphic novel from Nobrow on my blog. The art style is minimalist but so gorgeous and dreamlike, if that makes sense. The story is simple and very fast paced but it is so endearing and unique. Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5.

-*An Unreliable History of Tattoos by Paul Thomas 
Another beautifully published book from the lovely people at NoBrow. I have a couple of tattoos so this book instantly caught my eye; the illustrations are so fun, colourful and unique! Some of the facts are true and others are tongue in cheek and overall it's a fantastic book - it would be a great gift! Overall rating: ★★★★★, 5/5.

- Equal Rites by Terry Pratchett 
I read Mort by Terry Pratchett in April and really enjoyed it as it's really easy and comforting to read, to me, so I bought Equal Rites which isn't part of the death series - it's the first book in the witches series. I enjoyed this book a bit more than Mort as I loved the strong (if a little unusual) main female characters. The girl power, literally, in this book was fun and endearing. The main storyline is entertaining, fun and as with Mort, I read this in a couple of days. I will be buying more of the Discworld series; although the only problem I have this both books is that the ending always seems to be a bit rushed while the rest of the book has a relatively slow pace. Overall rating: ★★★★☆, 4/5. 

- Uprooted by Naomi Novik
I have the stunning mint green, purple and copper hard cover version of the book and I adore it! I've wanted to read this for ages but I kept putting it off and I don't know why. The book has a typical fairytale/folklore storyline to it - a great wizard lives in a tower and protects the people in the village, in turn he takes one girl every ten years to his tower and the girls rarely return to their village afterwards. It felt like a typical fairytale to me but with a modern/contemporary writing style. I love the two main characters, The Dragon and Agnieszka and the world! It was a LOT darker than I thought it would be, I love the slow angsty romance and the magic. However, I found the last 100 or so pages little confusing and I wasn't happy with the ending, it was abrupt and I wanted a certain two characters to live happily ever after as they always do in fairytales. Overall, I really enjoyed it but as with a few books in the post, I think I had too high expectations - I still definitely recommend it though. Overall rating: ★★★★☆, 4/5. 

- Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion 
I have watched the trailer for the film version and it looked really interesting so I picked up the book, so I can then watch the film. I instantly loved the writing style, it's dark and unique but quick and easy to follow. Most of the book is just R's thoughts as he can hardly speak, like the other zombies which is unique. I loved R as a character, he was sweet, endearing and almost familiar; I also loved M as a character too. The plot was relatively simple but why the zombie acocoplyse came about wasn't really explained at all but I did love the ending. The romance was so sweet and one of my favourite parts of the books. I thought it would be a funny zombie apocalypse book but it isn't really, it's more dark and morbid than I thought it would be and a few scenes were a bit disturbing. It's more about how we can change the world, friendship and going against the twisted social norms than a gore fest or cheesy romance. It's a really short read and I would definitely recommend it! Overall rating: ★★★★☆, 4/5. 

I'm currently reading The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern and I really like it so far although the timeline is a bit confusing! 

Have you read any of these books? What are your reading currently?