Monday, 17 November 2014

Thoughts and Stuff

Tonight I am feeling rootless. Or maybe not so much rootless but potted. I feel like a plant that had its roots in a small coastal town in North Wales, but before I had even matured I was dug up and potted for ease of transport. Every time I move I feel like they stick me back in the ground, but they never remove the pot. It's always there, around my roots, never allowing me to truly get settled in one place. I suppose it makes it easier to yank me out should I need to go somewhere else, but sometimes I so badly want my roots to tangle deep into the earth and settle. I want to be a fixed part of a place. 

Sometimes there are people that ground me, that make me feel like I am home, and like I would matter if I leave. However, ultimately they don't often stay that way. It never stops scaring me, how easy it would be to just get up and leave. To just be somewhere else, be someone else, doing something else. I don't want that. All the wanderlust was stomped out of me from a young age after many privileged journeys abroad and many not so privileged moves, in which I once again tumbled all my stuff into boxes and picked up a new life in a new place.

I just want a place to belong. A place I can finally update my address with the bank to because I know it's going to be there for more than a year or two. A place I know, with people I've known for longer than a few years and have not moved on from or fallen out with because 'who cares it's only temporary anyway'.

I'm starting to feel like if I keep fighting I can have that with someone, but sometimes it's just hard to feel like such a temporary person.   

If you can't tell I'm moving house, which is why I've been so internet MIA

Thursday, 13 November 2014

What I've Been Watching Recently- Girls

Just so you know, my life has taken a pretty interesting turn recently so I've not had much time or energy to read. I've needed something that I can just get into easily and not spend too much time doing. With that in mind I started watching Girls.

I've heard some pretty mixed things about Girls. Some saying it is the true, feminist depiction of young women that America needs. Others saying that while it is a step forward for American TV it is still limping behind the likes of British TV that has been painfully honest for quite a while. Regardless, I had been planning to watch this show for a long time and never got around to it. I had even bought the first season for cheap from Blockbusters (just as it was going bust so it really was a bargain).

Girls is a show based on the lives of 4 twenty-something friends who are trying to figure out what they are doing while living in the very expensive city of New York. There were definitely aspects of this show that hits home for me. To me this is what I wanted from the genre of 'New Adult' in books, but it's so much better. This show takes all the things that are now terrifying people of our age and drags them into the spotlight in a funny but serious way. It highlights issues that many young women are struggling with but also makes us look at the issues we think we are struggling with and realise maybe we shouldn't be.

Girls tackles a lot of issues and a lot of weirdness to a pretty great soundtrack and some amazing cinematography. Each of the four lead actresses hold their own with both the humour and the emotional scenes. The storylines, as previously mentioned, hit home in a really true way and the characters are neither really likeable or unlikeable; just real in the sense that they do good things and they do shitty things and sometimes you route for them and sometimes you really don't.

I really do recommend this show. It takes a little while to get into and at first the episodes felt a little too short for the story and character development to shine through, but as it goes on they really do draw you in. Now I just need to find somewhere online where I can watch season two and avoid my life for a little bit longer.

Sunday, 26 October 2014

The Sleeper and the Spindle Quick Review

The Sleep and the Spindle is the latest Neil Gaiman graphic novel to be published by Bloomsbury. The story is a retelling of Sleeping Beauty, but it's also kind of a re-imagining of Snow White after she is woken from her poisoned sleep.

The book contains one of the best author and illustrator combinations there possibly may ever be by pairing Gaiman with Riddell for the 4th time in their careers. This time however, where the previous works relied heavily on Gaimian's stories, The Sleeper and the Spindle equally relies on the beautiful imagery that Riddell creates. That is not to say that this is a typical graphic novel, none of the story is told just using the pictures and without the words the images would not join together and make sense; but without Riddell's work the book would fall flat.

Yes, I hate to admit it but even though Gaimian's retelling is clever, it is lacking the usual finesse I have come to expect from his work. The pacing felt off, the words were not as captivating and overall I think it would have floundered on it's own. On this occasion Riddell's illustrations turn The Sleeper and the Spindle into a work of art rather than a slightly lacking short story. I will keep this novel on my shelves in a place of pride purely for how beautiful it is.

Saturday, 20 September 2014

Why do You Love Something?

Do you ever really enjoy something, but when you're expected to eloquently describe exactly why you do love something you fall down at the first hurdle? Part of the time I want to shout "because I just do", other times I want to protectively hide my reasoning away so that no one can pick holes in my logic. Most of the time I just dig deep, buck up and try to come up with some reasons to explain why things are just so GOOD.

Some of the time though even though I know why I like something, it's hard to put that into a review. It's hard because sometimes things just are good. I recently read Heir of  Fire, and when I post my review of it I know it's not going to be well done. Perhaps it's because this series is no longer new, the things I like I have mentioned before. There are some new characters in it and new decisions and directions, but most of the characters and the writing for me are now old friends. How do you describe and old friend? They are no longer amazing for the reasons that initially drew you in. They are not flawless. They do not sparkle like a shiny penny any more. There are things you don't like mixed in now and they don't always make you happy; instead you become attached to them with a deeper feeling that's indescribable but unavoidable. You just love them because you have spent so much time with them that they just are constants in your life.

Maybe it's because they're no longer exciting and new so I don't want to gush about them any more and instead quietly appreciate them. I'm not sure. I thought I'd just write a post about it to see if anyone has experienced anything similar?

Saturday, 13 September 2014

Beautiful Books | Penguin Chalk Collection

These penguin chalks books are so beautiful I felt I had to share them. There are six books so far in the collection (two sets of 3 by two different designers) and each book is exceptionally well made. It's unusual to see this level of detail go into a paperback book but each book has deckled edges and cover flaps making them feel a lot more expensive than they actually are. I just love to stare at this collection. 

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

The Harry Potter US Boxset Review

I know most booktubers got this boxset for Christmas, but I still wanted to do a photo heavy review for those thinking of buying it.

Firstly the box the set comes in looks like this:

Pretty! But unfortunately I find the box a bit tight and it means it's really hard to get the books out and back in again. I've actually banged up one of the books trying to get it out and put it back which is really annoying. No matter how pretty this box is, it's a little impractical.

All the books together form a scene of Hogwarts castle, which I unfortunately forgot to photograph the right way up.

The books themselves are made of a lovely matte feeling cover and the pages seem very sturdy and well bound. It's unfortunate that they decided to re-print these with all the American changes (like Sorcerer's Stone instead of Philosopher's Stone) because now most of the HP community know all the original English titles, names etc... But what can you do?

I'll include the rest of the pictures in a read more section below for those of you who don't want to see any more of them and just wanted to find out about the boxset.

Overall I am very pleased with the books, they are very well done and the cover art is absolutely stunning. I love the pastel colours and there is a lot of purple and blue running through the art work which I love as they are some of my favourite colours. I definitely think any HP fanatic will be happy to have this on their shelves.

Hope you enjoyed these photo's!