Please Hear What I’m Not Saying – Guest Post Isabelle Kenyon

Sooo, long time, no blog. I am aware and I am sorry! The past month has been massively hectic for me: I have had exams, a freaking snow storm, and most importantly, and the probably the only thing that stopped me blogging: WRITERS BLOCK. It has been atrocious; I have had so many ideas for posts and literally no initiative to actually write them. Every time I start, I write one sentence and scrap it. Although I am determined to get my act together and go back to a weekly posting schedule.
So what better way to kick things back off than a lovely post about poetry? And also the fact that it is World Poetry Day (entirely coincidental by the way) but a good one, I must say. I am aiming to be blogging a lot more about poetry as I have actually got the first draft for my own anthology… I know, exciting right? I’ll be posting a separate blog post soon detailing the inside scoop of my writing progress as there are tons of projects I am currently working on that I would love you guys to know about and support!
Today’s blog is actually a guest post from the beautiful and talented poet Isabelle Kenyon. Her book “This is Not a Spectacle” is honestly a work of literary art and I would definitely recommend reading it! I will be back again with my normal posts very soon. Until then, take it away Isabelle…

Thank you for letting me guest blog today! I wanted to spread the word about the MIND Poetry Anthology which I have compiled and edited. ‘Please Hear What I’m Not Saying’ has recently been released on Amazon. The Anthology consists of poems from 116 poets (if I include myself!) and the book details a whole range of mental health experiences. The profits of the book with go to UK charity, Mind.

The book came about through my desire to do a collaborative project with other poets and my desire to raise money for a charity desperately seeking donations to cope with the rising need for its work. I received over 600 poems and have narrowed this down to 180.

I believe that what makes this anthology different, is the collaborative nature of the project – although I have had the final artistic control, all the poets involved are passionate about the topics of mental health which they have written about, and about the wider aim of the book to raise money for Mind. Truly, our voices are stronger together.

As an editor, I have not been afraid to shy away from the ugly or the abstract, but I believe that the anthology as a whole is a journey – with each section the perspective changes. I hope that the end of the book reflects the ‘light at the end of the tunnel’ for mental health and that the outcome of these last sections express positivity and hope.

I would love to share with you a few poems from the book:

Performance
By Sarah Evans

Everyday, projecting an invention of myself,
talking too much, speaking too little,
wrapped in layers of self-defence,
needing to be understood, not knowing
what to say, always perched outside
the magic circle of belonging,

poised at the party’s edge,
heart thumping, sweat crawling,
nausea pressing, world swimming,
longing to fit in, but reluctant to conform,
yearning for acceptance for
my unacceptable self,

this strange being, performing
amongst strangers.

Waste
By Sallyanne Rock

Immobile, I lay waste to days
Letting dust gather at my toes
Pins prickle sat-on hands
I wait, resenting daylight

Purpose passes by the window
Stillness stares back
From a crumpled pile on the sofa
Blanket-soft, nose cold

Standing to swallow cheap comfort
I face down the silent wall
Fruit furs and collapses
I watch it drip through basket holes

 

This poem was previously published for World Mental Health Day at https://worcestershirepoetlaureateninalewis.wordpress.com.

 

Links:

UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Please-Hear-What-Not-Saying/dp/1984006649/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1519045466&sr=8-1&keywords=please+hear+what+i%27m+not+saying

US: https://www.amazon.com/Please-Hear-What-Not-Saying/dp/1984006649/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1519045466&sr=8-1&keywords=please+hear+what+i%27m+not+saying

More information about the project: https://www.flyonthewallpoetry.co.uk/mind-poetry-project

My social media: Facebook https://www.facebook.com/flyonthewallpoetry/

Twitter: kenyon_isabelle
Insta: flyonthewall_poetry

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Cursed Child: Merchandise Guide

The world has never experienced anything like the Harry Potter mania and the chances are, it never will again. Starting with seven books which have evolved into eight movies, a theme park, a spin-off script and now, Britain’s very own stage play, Harry Potter has made such a significant impact on the world and touched so many hearts, including my own. And while I haven’t been able to visit the infamous Potter theme park, I was lucky enough to get tickets to see the Cursed Child Stage Play and after over a year of waiting, I finally got to see it!

My oh my, it was worth the tedious year long wait and honestly, if my budget would allow, I would book tickets to see both parts every Wednesday for the rest of the year; maybe even my life! In fact, while I was sitting there, watching that amazingly talented cast take their final bows, I thought about just staying in that seat, formulating a plan to bribe the staff in letting me live there. Of course, I am no Ravenclaw and bright ideas are not my forte, so eventually, I did have to leave the premises but I am a Slytherin and if not anything else, ambitious: I am determined to see it again. It was that freakin’ good.

So if you are a Potter fan, of course you want to be going to see Cursed Child, and if you were fortunate enough to get your paws on some of those golden tickets, I am here to give you a guide on how to handle the merch side of the day (because we all know merch is super important). This should give those of you that will be going (or that are just interested) a head start on planning your day. You will have the time of your life…

So, unfortunately the date of my performance had to fall exactly the day before payday which meant that while I was standing in line at the merch store, my choices were pretty narrowed. I managed to get my hands on a programme which was only £5 (I thought that was actually pretty reasonable) and the official Cursed Child hoodie for £30. Other than that, I was pretty strapped for cash because I had to pay for my dinner and travel but there was so much stuff I could have bought! Of course, most things were pretty overpriced because the people in charge of all things Potter know that most fans would hand over a limb or two to get a hold of Scorpius Malfoy’s wand, so money isn’t a major issue for them. However, for someone like me, who survives off of a part-time job, as much as his wand is something I do really want, I haven’t got the funds to spend £30/40 (I don’t remember for certain) on a stick of lead shaped as my favourite characters tool of destruction – as much as I wish I did.

The hoodie I bought though, I thought was reasonably priced as I was expecting them to be £40 minimum, so I was pleasantly surprised. It is relatively good quality: not the softest hoodie I have adorned but it has the official Cursed Child logo on the front of it and that is exactly what I bought it for. I haven’t put it through the wash yet (I know gross) but when I do, I will update you on how well it battles the washing machine. Oh and also, I would highly recommend buying it one or two sizes too big; those in charge of the Potterverse think that all of those feasts in the Great Hall don’t affect us.

The programme I bought was also very reasonably priced. It contains all the actors’ roles and some nice professional photographs and I would definitely recommend getting it as a souvenir if it is the only thing you buy while you are there. It has found a nice place to be proudly displayed on my bookshelf.

Oh and also, if I could give you one word of advice it would be please do not spend all of your money before the second half! Remember Voldemort Day from the book? Yeah, they have a whole freakin’ merch swap and change everything from House Pride to Deatheater Pride! Along with the house logos the Dark Mark has been revamped and you can literally get it on everything. There were t-shirts, pencils, lanyards and tons of other goodies sporting the modern dark mark and I, being a pureblood Slytherin, wanted all of it. Only to convince my prejudice pureblood parents that I am a supporter of the Dark Lord, until he is murdered and I am able to reveal my true misunderstood character of course… Oh who am I kidding? Those t-shirts were badass and I want one.

Overall, the merch is excellent as there is a huge selection to pick from. They have our favourite baby Slytherin’s wands (Albus’s is beautiful), and the new house logo on pretty much anything you can think of: tshirts, pencils, bookmarks, stickers… When I go again, I will definitely be picking up a Cursed Child key ring, which I did not have the money for this time.

Soo, have you been to see Cursed Child yet? What were your thoughts on it? I LOVED it so much; they did Scorbus so much justice and I couldn’t be happier with the performance. If you have any questions about the merchandise or the play, leave a comment below and I will be sure to answer them. Perhaps if I get enough, I will do a Cursed Child Q&A post to help people who are going or generally just interested. Until then, nox.

Books Like Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Honestly, I am just going to jump straight in and assume we have all read, or at least heard of the book Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell. If you haven’t, I’m sorry you have obviously been living under a rock. Sitting on my shelf as one of my favourite books, I kept looking at it after the third time reading it and realised that my book hangover simply wasn’t shifting. Luckily over the next few years after reading it, I found some books that could fall into the same category as Fangirl, (I like to refer to it as “books for internet people”) and I thought, if you are having the same issue as I did, these amazing novels will help cure your book hangover – at least for a little while.

 

Unconventional by Maggie Harcourt
I thought we should kick this off with a book I read last year that happens to be up there on my list of all-time favourite books (the list is quite extensive ) and that is Unconventional by Maggie Harcourt. I swear to you, it is Britain’s answer to Fangirl, like the cute, nerdier little sister that recently hit puberty and people are just starting to notice. I read this last year as a book club pick and I have been raving about it ever since; this book just hit me in all the feels.

 
It is essentially about a teenage girl called Lexi Angelo who helps her dad, the founder of Angelo Events with his conventions throughout the year. Lexi is super organised and is always getting everything done to make sure these events run smoothly; the conventions are her life and I think that is so freaking cool. There is a little family of convention staff that only see each other at the weekend of the events but they are all so close and I love every single member of this crazy convention family.

 
Lexi is all about planning, leading the crazy lifestyle that she does. She likes to stay behind the scenes at the conventions, organising the next panel or signing… until the confident, handsome author Aidan Green shows up at the very first event of the year. Lexi’s life is turned upside down as she has to face the fact that however annoyingly arrogant Aidan may be, she absolutely loves his book. She lives by organisation, but she soon learns that things like falling in love just can’t be planned.

 
If you are going to pick up any of the books on this list, please let it be this one. It’s so gripping, I read the whole 500 pages in one day; I could not put it down! I fell in love with every single one of the characters in this novel (except for the arseholes of course) and just want to be a part of their friendship group more than anything! Honestly, if you are an internet person, this book will be so great for you, and you will just get all of the references because you already understand the way fandoms work. Please please please read this goddamn beautiful novel.

 

Kill the Boyband by Goldy Moldavski
Now, this book, while still falling into the same category (books for internet people) as Unconventional, is more on the boy band side of the fandom spectrum than the nerdy side but it’s still so freaking good! It is hysterically dark, but you can tell that much from the title.

 
Now, we have all witnessed the twitter feuds between fangirls, whether we have been involved or just spectating for amusement and boy, they are brutal. Boy band obsessed fangirls generally tend to have a bad reputation of being hysterical, obsessed and certainly crazy (but you didn’t hear that from me). Keep that in mind, the crazy thing, when you are reading this because there is a whole lot of crazy in this book, you wouldn’t even believe it.

 
The book follows a group of friends who all have one thing in common: they are obsessed with this British boy band The Ruperts (each member’s name is Rupert which I thought is a kind of cool concept). This band, as far as I can tell is based off One Direction, but that is just what I got from reading the book, as they were put together in a UK talent competition and they grew really big. There are loads of other things that led me to this conclusion but the evidence isn’t coming to me right now. Either way, it doesn’t really matter. 1D or not, this band is huge; that is the key point.

 
What matters is this group of girls, who decide they want to meet the Ruperts when they come to New York. So they think it will be a good idea to stay in the same hotel as them and that is literally when it all goes downhill. Each girl has their own favourite Rupert and is determined to meet them but chaos ensues. The novel is an online confession from our protagonist and quite frankly, if this were real and this confession was released, teenage hearts all over the world would be breaking and people would be going to jail. This book is a whirlwind of exposure; it made me question the truthfulness of the media… and the capability of teenage fangirls.

 

Stranger Than Fanfiction by Chris Colfer
Now, I haven’t actually read this all yet (I am currently 15 pages in) but this book is what inspired this whole blog post. As soon as I began reading it, just before I started writing this, I automatically realised I was in a familiar environment: surrounded by internet people. The first thing that came to mind was the similarity to Unconventional and now I am super excited to be taken on this journey. This book has conventions AND hot celebrities, what else could a girl possibly ask for? I will definitely write a review when I have finished it but as I am not in any position to give you a run-down and mini review of this book: I’ll just insert the blurb from Goodreads so you can get the main idea.

 
Cash Carter is the young, world famous lead actor of the hit television Wiz Kids. When four fans jokingly invite him on a cross-country road trip, they are shocked that he actually takes them up on it. Chased by paparazzi and hounded by reporters, this unlikely crew takes off on a journey of a lifetime–but along the way they discover that the star they love has deep secrets he’s been keeping. What they come to learn about the life of the mysterious person they thought they knew will teach them about the power of empathy and the unbreakable bond of true friendship.

So there we have it! If you want to read more books like Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell, these are my suggestions… I would definitely recommend any of these books as they are all nice easy reads while sticking to a nice, relatable storyline. If you have any other books like this, please leave the name of them in the comments as I absolutely love these kind of books. Also, is there a name for this type of book because as you are aware I have just been referring to it as Books for Internet People but maybe there is an official or more widely used term? If there is please do let me know. For now, happy reading!

2018 Reading Resolutions

Aaaaand, I am back. Yep, you heard it; I am back and ready to blog my arse off this year, so expect to be bombarded with an abundance of bookish blog posts from now on. I know I took a bit of a break over Christmas, I was spending a lot of time with family and I am also not afraid to admit that I did finally discover the enjoyment of going to the pub. Instead of writing blog posts, I have spent a good majority of my time with a large cocktail pitcher in my hand, having a deep conversation with people I barely talk to sober. But hey, it was Christmas! Now it’s a new year and I am whipping myself back into shape, so less drinking and more writing. It shouldn’t be too difficult…

To kick off 2018, I decided to make a list of New Year’s resolutions and write about them here so that a) you guys know what I’m up to this year and b) most importantly, you can keep me accountable to them so that I don’t get lazy. So with little more to say, let’s get into my reading resolutions for this year.

Read 30 books

    Now I know 30 sounds like a bit of a cop-out for someone who spends their free time blogging about books but there is in fact a method to my madness. I’m going to level with you guys: this is a super important year for me with exams so studying will be one of my main priorities this year. Honestly, finding the time to plough through 30 books will be a miracle but my TBR pile demands it.

    Read 5 books that are not YA

In case you didn’t know, I am going to university this year (oh wow, that’s daunting to actually say) and as much as I’m pretty sure I won’t ever entirely grow out of YA, I as a reader want to broaden my reading material and I think that reading 5 books that are not at all YA his year is the best way to start! So, leave me some recommendations of good NA or Adult novels to start with when transitioning from YA, I would love to read some of your favourites.

Read or re-read all course material

    I have a few books that I am required to read for my exams and I am ashamed to admit that two of them have only been briefly half-read (I know, I am a failure). So I have made it my priority this year to get those books properly read and I must also re-read my other course materials so that I don’t completely flunk my exams.

    Get through my TBR and DNF pile

If you follow me on twitter, which, self-promo here (you should I’m here) you will have seen that just before Christmas I pulled all the books I have not yet read or finished out of my bookshelf and made a physical pile in my room. Let’s just say it’s snowing at the top of it. All of those books will have been put back on my shelf by the end of the year.

Read IT by Stephen King

    That brick of a novel has been staring me in the face since I went to watch the film (I know I watched the film before reading the book – I’m gross) and I really want to build up the courage to plough through all thousand pages of killer clown horror. If that book sits in my room any longer, I’m going to start using it to weightlift to get my bikini body for Zante 2018, its big enough.

    So there we are, those are my reading resolutions for 2018. I am going to try and keep a reading log on here (if I can gain some technological skills and figure out how to do that) to let you guys know how much progress I am making with my 30 books… and don’t be afraid to pester me if I’m slacking! Sometimes I do need a friendly kick up the arse to get myself back on track. What are your new year’s resolutions? Let me know in the comments and we can help each other out. This is our year; let’s make the absolute most of it!

Christmas Tag

Okay, so I know it’s been a week since the last blog post – eek! My brain is being mean to me; I just feel so unproductive and drained which sucks so close to Christmas but hey ho, I am powering I through. I was tagged in this Christmas Tag and had a whale of a time writing it. I stuck on “The Christmas Prince” which is an excellent film by the way and now I truly am in the festive spirit! So, let us begin!

Oh, I nearly forgot to mention, I was tagged by the lovely Ash so be sure to check her blog out!

Use one noise to describe how excited you are for Christmas.
Ahh!

Do you open any presents on Christmas Eve?
I open Christmas pajama’s and the Secret Santa I do with my immediate family.

What holiday traditions are you looking forward to most this year?
Going to see Santa with my siblings and watching a pantomime on Christmas Eve (it’s Cinderalla this year!)

Is your Christmas tree real or fake?
Fake

What is your favourite Christmas film?
Definitely Elf or the Polar Express.

Where do you usually spend your holiday?
At home with my family and everyone comes to us for dinner.

What is your favourite Christmas song?
It changes every year and I have so many! This year I am really loving Where Are You Christmas by Jill Zadeh and Matt Terry’s version of When Christmas Comes Around.

What is your all-time favourite holiday food/sweet treat?
Can I just say the whole of Christmas Dinner? Oooh and my mum makes homemade cheese biscuits and sausage rolls – you have to try them!

Be honest: do you like giving gifts or receiving gifts better?
Of course I love receiving gifts; who doesn’t? I do spend a lot of time and money on the gifts I buy for my friends and family so it’s lovely to watch them open them.

What is your favourite thing about Christmas?
Just that warm fuzzy feeling you get when the air gets cold and the Christmas lights go up.

When do you start getting excited for Christmas?
honestly, I start getting excited when we go back to school in September time but I usually wait until about November to start showing it.

What is the best Christmas gift you’ve ever received?
When I was younger, my Dad bought me a gold-paged book of all the Chronicles of Narnia stories which was probably my favourite gift. It was super special to me because my Dad usually leaves all of the Christmas shopping to my Mum but he specifically went and bought this present for me which I just find so touching.

What is the worst present you’ve ever received?
One time my Great Nan wrapped up a box of Winnie the Pooh tissues for me to open. At the time I was convinced it was because she hates me, but the more I think about it the more I feel like it may be something to do with her partial sight.

As a kid, did a sibling ever receive a present that you wished was for you?
Me and my siblings are very different so not really no.

What would be your dream place to visit for the holiday season?
Probably Lapland or New York. I just want to see a white Christmas for once!

Most memorable Holiday moment?
Quite a few years ago, me and my sisters were on the Christmas edition of Surprise Surprise on ITV. That was pretty cool. Here is a link if you want to watch fourteen year old me meet the Vamps, confused and amongst a mass of children.

Do you make New Years resolutions? Do you stick to them?
I always try but always make them to specific and difficult so end up failing.

What makes the holidays special for you?
Just being able to spend time with my family.

What’s the best part about Christmas for you?
Getting up super early with the smell of turkey in the air and opening our presents in the front room.

You have been granted one Christmas wish…what will it be?
The grades to get into the University I really want. Or maybe to be in the Harry Potter movies.. Or to be in the actual Wizarding World. Or maybe a boyfriend… There is so much I want!

So that is that, I am feeling super Christmassy now which is exactly what I needed. Now I am going to make a hot chocolate and curl up with Crooked Kingdom because who doesn’t love Kaz Brekker at Christmas? I hope you enjoyed this, I will be tagging people to participate on twitter but feel free to take part in it regardless. Leave the links to your own blog posts below, I love reading Christmas tags

 

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo – Review

“Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price–and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can’t pull it off alone…

A convict with a thirst for revenge.
A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager.
A runaway with a privileged past.
A spy known as the Wraith.
A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums.
A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes.

Six dangerous outcasts. One impossible heist. Kaz’s crew is the only thing that might stand between the world and destruction—if they don’t kill each other first.”

Stand alone or series? Series.
How did I get the book? Purchased it as one of the books for the book club I attend. I was so glad they chose this book; I wanted to read it for so long and it was the best excuse to bump it up my TBR!

First of all, can we just talk about how in love I am with this book. The plot was thrilling, the setting is so vividly described I now feel like I have actually been in Ketterdam, and the characters… Oh my. These characters are so real in my head that I actually feel like I’ve made six new pals. I keep fangirling over Kaz to my friends in real life forgetting that he is actually just a work of fiction and I can’t actually date him, sigh. Every time my friends talk about boys, I want to input and talk about him and how completely gorgeous but complex he is, then I remember that I actually can’t because they just won’t get it. It’s quite depressing really. That boy has flown up my list of fictional boyfriends and now sits firmly alongside Jace Wayland at joint first place and that in itself is an achievement. Well done Kaz Brekker for ruining my life.

Six of Crows is written in alternating narrative chapters following our six beloved characters; except our darling Wylan, who for some reason doesn’t get a chapter, which I know everyone including myself feels personally offended about. I heard he gets some chapters in Crooked Kingdom though, so I may be able to find it in my heart to forgive Leigh Bardugo for excluding our flower child. The novel flows beautifully in this style and we get to know our characters in small chunks which is something I love about the story; we don’t get our characters thrown at us in messy heaps, just fed to us in small, easy to swallow bites. They are often with each other so we are never too far from the main action and not left irritated wanting to find out what is going out elsewhere. We as a reader are always at the heart of the action alongside one of our favourite characters – and we get a lot of that: action.

Set in Ketterdam, a civilisation of violence, where criminals operate in every bar, inn and brothel, danger is a friendly companion to our cast of criminals, especially the infamous, the gorgeous, the graceful: Kaz Brekker. Kaz, a criminal prodigy with no morals, someone you certainly would want to meet on a dimly lit street in Ketterdam with a pocket full of stolen Kruge ready for him to grab, is a unlawful phenomenon with no room for anything but money (and maybe a certain girl, but he would never tell you that) on his mind. He’s been promised the prize of a lifetime to complete an impossible heist – he just needs to find a team stupid enough to help him.

Now, the first thing I was told about Six of Crows before I even opened the book, was that Kaz has a confrontation involving the detachment of an eyeball from one’s socket and boy was I excited when this infamous scene actually happened. I had built up this image of Kaz in my head from just this one piece of information and he surely didn’t disappoint! That boy is ruthless and damn, I love it. I am saying no more about the eyeball situation; it is way too good to spoil!

Kaz… Angry… Shouting… Oh where were we? I am such trash for Kaz.
Now, before I get to what really brought this book to life and made it so important to me which is the individual characters themselves, I want to talk about Leigh’s worldbuilding in Six of Crows. I haven’t read any of her previous books set in the Grishaverse which I was slightly worried about when starting to read. So, I did what any teen in doubt does when deciding what to do: I went online. I read a load of spoiler-free reviews written by those who had experience with the other books before reading Six of Crows and some who hadn’t. Overall, the general idea I got was that I didn’t need to bother with the other books first (though I definitely will be reading them soon) as I would get the hang of it as the novel went on. I am ashamed to say that I think it took me quite a while longer than most to catch on and start understanding the world which did indeed make the novel very slow for me to start with; but when I got it I was fine and flew through the rest of the book. So that’s a warning, if you haven’t read the other books and find it hard to grasp new concepts and types of societies, this novel may be difficult to start with. But trust me, once you are passed the initial confusion, you will absolutely love it!

Six of Crows is set in a fantasy version of our own world with an element of magic projected through the Grisha which is what I enjoyed about the world. Familiar world, unfamiliar power. Once I got the main idea, it was easy enough to grasp: it was the use of different languages, religion and nationalities that took time to get into my head. That was something that I loved about this particular novel though: the diversity, which leads me onto my next point…
Let’s jump straight into what made this book so special to me: the characters. Despite the excitement of the flawless, dangerous world, and the slight disappointment of a slightly cliché heist trope, it was actually the characters that did it for me; I could have forgotten everything else and written this whole review gushing about this little cast of six.

First of all I would just like to congratulate Leigh Bardugo on her fantastic job of representing all different types of people in this gang and how brilliantly she executed it. There were characters with physical disabilities, mental disabilities, mental illness, people of colour and we got a lovely dash of lgbtq representation as well. That being said, it wasn’t one of those “hey, look at me, I’m here so that this book seems diverse and represents everyone so I’ve been shoved in here uselessly,” things that make me want to throw books; I mean that simply wouldn’t work with any of these savvy characters. It was more of a “hey I’m here because diversity within people is a thing. I’m not here to solely be a person of colour, I’m here to be I’m a complete badass and I happen to be a person of colour.” And that is what I absolutely loved.

I could go on and on describing each of the characters we go on this heist mission with but it would spoil it for you. You need to go into this book with an open mind and excitement to meet these amazing people and learn about what made them who they are today. Each one of them has fought their own tragic battle personally and have come together to better their lives and provide opportunity for their selves by whatever means possible. Just open the book, get to know these group of misfits, but remember they’re not martyrs or heroes, they are criminals with money on their mind. They’re filthy, lying, cheating thieves and you are going to absolutely love them.

Just remember:
No mourners and no funerals.
Enjoy!

December 2017 YA Releases

November is slowly coming to an end which means two things: Christmas and new book releases! And it seems that I am having a very hard time deciding which one I am most excited for… December is seemingly packed full of new YA contemporary novels and at this rate, I am going to be camping outside the bookstores to get my hands on a copy of these highly anticipated reads. So, sit tight and get your calendar out because I can assure you, you will want to be marking these release dates down. So before I ramble on for another thousand words, here are the books I am most excited for coming in December.

Love, Life and the List by Kasie West
Expected release date: 26/12/17

This novel follows the main character, an artist called Abby Turner who happens to be in love with her best friend: Cooper Wells. Abby desperately wants earn her way into the upcoming exhibit in the gallery she works at but is told that her art lacks heart. Determined to change her boss’s mind, she compiles the “The Heart List” which is a list of experiences to make her heart expand, turning her into a more deep and soulful artist. When Cooper decides he would like to join in, Abby decides that perhaps she should stop the heart expanding and get a new hobby.
I am so excited to get my hands on a copy of this book (and not just because me and the protagonist share a name) but because I feel like this is just going to be a nice easy read and so close to Christmas, that is all I am going to want.

Foolish Hearts by Emma Mills
Expected release date: 5/12/17
Can a high school production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream lead you to new friends and perhaps even new love? Claudia is about to find out. At the last party of summer, she overhears a conversation that she knows she wasn’t supposed to. Now, on the wrong side of one of the absolute meanest girls in school, Claudia has been paired with her to write a paper and the both of them are forced to try out for the school play A Midsummer Night’s Dream. However, school plays aren’t all bad, which is what Claudia is going to find out. Sometimes they’re full of friendships, boy band obsessions and a guy with the best dimpled smile of all time – apparently.
This book cannot come soon enough as far as I’m concerned. Shakespeare, boy band obsessions and a boy with dimples? Need I say anymore?

The Love Letters of Abelard and Lily by Laura Creedle
Expected release date: 26/12/17
It’s detention and two neurodiveregent teens meet each other there. Lily Michaels-Ryan has ADHD and has decided to give her medication a miss which is exactly what lands her in detention where she meets the beautifully brilliant Abelard who suffers from Asperger’s. Lily is intrigued: Abelgard is slow and she is fast but they fit together so perfectly. When Abelard posts a quote from The Letters of Abelard and Heloise online, their mutual love of ancient love letters pulls the pair together and they fall for each other. Will their differences get between them?
This is probably my most anticipated read for December; I am literally shaking in my seats reading the reviews! I cannot wait to see how Creedle represents neurodivergency and if she does it justice which I’m praying she does.

Here, There, Everywhere by Julia Durango
Expected release date: 19/12/17
Zeus would rather be anywhere than the tiny town his family just moved to. Having left all his friends behind, he is all alone and he is certain this is going to be the absolute worst summer of his life. But then he meets Rose, the musician and suddenly everything changes. Zeus can hardly believe that someone as funny, beautiful and smart can actually exist, let alone actually be interested in spending time with him. He is eager to spend more time with her but she is eager to just get out of this town and far away. Will Zeus have time to convince Rose that he is more than just a summer fling and be able to prevent her wanting to get away so fast?
This book just sounds so cute and romantic I cannot wait to get to know these characters; I can already feel a soft spot developing for Zeus. I am so excited to read this and find out whether it’s going to be an adorable romance or a heart-wrenching tragedy, but still, December isn’t far now: I’ll know soon enough.

So there we have it; now you know why I am so excited for December. If you need me at any time next month, I will be in my room with All I Want for Christmas playing on a loop, curled up with one of these fantastic looking novels! If you are excited for any of these novels to be released or there are any that you are particularly excited for yourself that I haven’t mentioned, do let me know! December is going to be a busy month for reading, it’s a good thing I have already done all my Christmas shopping…