What I thought – October

I thought I would summarise the books I read in October and share my favourites with you. I even came up with a swanky rating system, but if you’d rather read my actual scores then check out my Goodreads.

In October I managed to read a few graphic novels and a few books – I tried to stick to a spoopy theme however I was luckily to receive an early copy of Muse of Nightmares.

Muse of Nightmares

(Must read)

This book, this incredible book! I loved Strange the Dreamer (it was actually the first book to make me ugly cry in public) so I waited in anticipation for this next installment and I was not let down. It follows on straight after the previous book, and continues to expand on the lost city of Weep and it’s incredibly powerful inhabitants.

Without giving away too much of the plot, this book captivated me even more than the first and I believe this was due to the relationship the emotional attachment you have to the characters. You really feel something for Lazlo, Sarai and especially Eril-Fane – you can feel the emotion throughout each individual person, their love, pain and anger. If you enjoyed Strange the Dreamer you will love this, it opens up more lore into the universe and finally gives you some clarity to the backstory of the Gods and Godslayers.

This wasn’t a horror themed book but Minya did an excellent job of giving me actual shivers up my spine, and obviously I cannot wait for the third installment!

Hex

(Buy on sale)

Hex was a difficult one for me because the first 80 pages or so felt like a mish-mash of tones and writing styles. I really struggled and almost gave up but then around 100 pages in it suddenly clicked and I began really enjoying it – until the ending.

Set in a town haunted by the ghost of a ‘witch’ who was previously murdered by the townsfolk for resurrectimg her son – the book opens surprisingly comical and the way the townsfolk speak about her so lightheartedly you’d think she was a relative. The books concept and ideas were great and a few of the scenes mid-way through the book really were hard-hitting, however the tone just felt so wrong at times. After reading up on the author however I realised this was a book translated from Dutch, the location it was set was completely changed and some of the scenes were taken out / rewritten – so maybe it was lots in translation with me?

Personally I wouldn’t recommend this book to someone unless they could pick it up real cheap!

The Last Days of Jack Sparks

(Read immediately)

I was sent this by my friend Kelsey, and was not sure if it would by my cup of tea but I really, really enjoyed this. I read it in 2 sittings because I was hooked!

A book within a book this was a documentary styled book written by Jack Sparks, who could be deemed the Louis Theroux of the book world. He has spent his career writing books on the darker sides of life and his latest book was to debunk the idea of ghosts and possession. This begins with the book opening to an excorism he witnesses – it then spirals out of control and sees what happens after you burst out laughing infront of a possessed little girl.

Honestly this was one of the first books in a very long time that gave me the creeps. I actually had a couple of mini nightmares off the back of this book and this has literally never happened with any book. You really feel what Jack is going through and you can feel his emotions through each page in the book. I absolutely loved it.

It did what a horror book should do, scared the shit out of me.

Sex Criminals : Volume 5

Not quite Halloweeny, but volume 5 of Sex Criminals came out this month!

Volume 4 was a bit of a let-down for me and I was really hoping it would redeem itself, it did just that!

The humour felt back on point and the story feels like it’s progressing and finally back on track to how strong it was with volumes 1-3.

I can’t really talk about this too much especially if you haven’t read the other volumes. But if you are looking for something which isn’t about Superheroes and has a very adult theme and humour, then this might be for you!

I hope this gave you an insight into my reading habits…

See you next month!

– Amy x

Beautiful Virus Shawl

I have finished another crochet project which is super rare for me to do so many in such a short space of time, the Easter weekend was fairly busy for us however on Bank Holiday Monday I decided to sit down and finish a shawl I started the week before. Surprisingly this although this pattern looks very complicated, it didn’t take long at all and I think if you know how to do the basic double/triple crochet you will be able to do this fine.

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The yarn I have used it the Cotton Kings Twirl from Hobbii (which I absolutely adored working with and will be getting more) and as you can see the gradient is absolutely beautiful. I only used one ball of yarn (it comes in 800 M length). I ended up with a tiny bit of left over, but not enough to do the last round unfortunately however I think it looks good regardless.

The tutorial I used was Bella Coco’s video tutorial which was super helpful and really easy to stitch along – I will say the virus shawl looks more complicated than it actually is. Once you’ve done around 2 – 3 rounds of the pattern you’ll pick it up really easily.

I highly recommend doing this in a light lacey yarn as it gives such a delicate effect – however it does become a little fiddly to work with at it’s multiple strands of yarn woven together.

Have you been working on any handmade projects recently?

-Amy x

Ever Alice – Review

 

Title: Ever Alice
Author: 
H.J Ramsay
Publisher: 
Red Rogue Press
Genre: Fantasy, Teens & YA, Sci-Fi
Release Date: August 1st 2019
Rating:

 

 

 

If you know me personally you would know that Alice in Wonderland is one of my all time favourite books,  I grew up watching the Disney version of the film over and over again. In fact I know my parents have a VHS of me somewhere singing ‘All the Flowers’ proudly in the front room for the whole family.

When I saw that Ever Alice was available on Netgalley to review I jumped at the chance,  it sounded like a mixture of the world I once knew as a child mixed with the harsh realities of mental health. By now if you’ve been reading my blog you will know that I love a good dark Fantasy fiction, especially tales with a twist.

Here is the synopsis pulled from Netgalley:

Alice’s stories of Wonderland did more than raise a few eyebrows—it landed her in an asylum. Now at 15 years of age, she’s willing to do anything to leave, which includes agreeing to an experimental procedure. When Alice decides at the last minute not to go through with it, she escapes with the White Rabbit to Wonderland and trades one mad house for another: the court of the Queen of Hearts. Only this time, she is under orders to take out the Queen. When love, scandal, and intrigue begin to muddle her mission, Alice finds herself on the wrong side of the chopping block.

I have now finished reading Ever Alice and my review is below, there will be a few spoilers so be warned.

Continue reading “Ever Alice – Review”

Finale – Review


 

Title: Finale
Author: Stephanie Garber
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Release Date: 9th May 2019
Rating:

 

 

 

The Caraval series has had me gripped ever since I sat down to read the first book, I was absorbed and fell in love with the fantastical world that was presented to me. I also fancy the pants off of Dante, but that’s a tale for another day…

I can say now that Finale did not disappoint. From the first page I was just as hooked as I was when I read both Caraval and Legendary, I actually managed to read it in just two sittings.

There will be light spoilers in this review, so please stop reading now if you want to avoid those. I will try and talk about the book as much as possible without revealing too much.

Synopsis taken from Goodreads:

“Welcome, welcome to Caraval…all games must come to an end.

It’s been two months since the last Caraval concluded, two months since the Fates have been freed from an enchanted deck of cards, two months since Tella has seen Legend, and two months since Legend claimed the empire’s throne as his own. Now, Legend is preparing for his official coronation and Tella is determined to stop it. She believes her own mother, who still remains in an enchanted sleep, is the rightful heir to the throne.

Meanwhile, Scarlett has started a game of her own. She’s challenged Julian and her former fiancé, Count Nicolas d’Arcy, to a competition where the winner will receive her hand in marriage. Finaly, Scarlett feels as if she is in complete control over her life and future. She is unaware that her mother’s past has put her in the greatest danger of all.

Caraval is over, but perhaps the greatest game of all has begun―with lives, empires, and hearts all at stake. There are no spectators this time: only those who will win…and those who will lose everything…”

Continue reading “Finale – Review”

Simple Baby Blanket

I recently finished another crochet project and this time I did a simple granny square baby blanket. I am an aunt again so I thought I would make a blanket which felt like Easter and was also super cute – luckily I have so much yarn I didn’t have to purchase anything new for this, I simply just used some Stylecraft yarn I already had.

For this I did a simple granny square and then every 2 rows I changed colour, so the blanket is a complete square. I then finished it with a double crochet (UK) border 🙂

Let me know what you think in the comments below and also let me know what projects you’re currently working on.

-Amy x

What I thought – Books I Read in March

This month I read 3 books (I’ve almost finished my 4th one but I will be doing a separate review for that)


Sadie

This took me a while to get into and I did almost put it down and begin reading something else, then a friend told me to try the audiobook. Again I wasn’t feeling it and the narration felt a bit cheesy at times, but suddenly something clicked and I ended up really enjoying it. It is very clever and is laid out as a podcast within a book, so as an audiobook it works really well. It starts quite sad and the tone get progressively darker, which as you know I really enjoy. However it does deal with death of children and can be very difficult to listen too / read throughout.

The Alchemist

I was recommended this by SOOOOOO many people, so when I read it and didn’t like it I felt bad. I don’t know, I understand it’s a different take on a self-help book however I couldn’t distance myself from what it really was. It felt like it was preaching to me and also felt very misleading and just not something I could get into. I didn’t get anything from this – I didn’t get my spiritual awakening it kept talking about and I don’t think I will be recommending this to anyone any time soon.

Snot Girl #13

Snotgirl is back with another amazing comic and I loved it! It was such a good way to bring the story back and also made me howl with laughter. I love Snotgirl because it is a comic based on this era of influencers and does it in such a good way. If you’re interested in me writing up a proper review of the series so far then let me know!

What did you read in March?

-Amy x

Glitter Granny Square Blanket

I am back with another finished project, I am on a role at the moment! However I have been working on this blanket for well over a year and a delay was caused by the place I buy my yarn not having it in stock for a very, very long time.

But huzzah, here is my finished pastel glitter granny square blanket! I used baby yarn as it’s the softest and all the colours used has a hint of glitter to it. I absolutely love how this blanket turned out, even if it did almost kill me in the process.

Granny Blanket

I am a left handed crocheter so I struggled picking up my first granny square without it twisting, but if you’re looking for a good tutorial I recommend checking out Bella Coco, who does right and left handed variants of all of her stitches! Here is her YouTube and the beginners granny square tutorial.

I also recommend using a stitch which allows you to continuously add each granny square, as I chose the option of adding one granny square at a time…it’s safe to say I never want to use this process again!

What do you think of this blanket? I just finished it in time for Easter too and the colours are very Eastery!

You can follow me on Instagram for more of my crochet updates as I am working on a project too.

What projects are you working on right now?

-Amy x