About
About
In 1992 she entered the world butt-naked, and has been fully-clothed ever since. (Thank God.) She survived school by blending into the crowds and relying on witty sarcasm to get her through. This did not change in adult life. Her WPM count is 100, and this is perhaps her only true talent.
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Imgs compiled from Pinterest


Hello Readers & Friends,

I'm making quite a drastic rebranding decision. I'm not sure when it will start to roll out, but I wanted to be able to give a heads-up that my content will start to get a little more experimental and different over time.

WHY?

As you guys all know, I've been fighting an uphill battle with the instagram algorithm as of late. I've lost hundreds of followers and while I know it's not about the numbers, it is disheartening. At best, I've managed to maintain level over a few weeks.
My impression rate has dropped a staggering 85%, with only about 3% of my followers even SEEING my content. Things have to change, or what's the point? The whole reason I started my Bookstagram account was to share things with others, and if they can't see them then I'm just sharing with myself!

I want to create content people care about, that people want to see but that still feels like me. I'm bored scrolling down my feed and seeing the same books and the same set-ups and I'm just as guilty as everyone else of following the trends because they work. But how many times do you want to see Queen of Nothing in a pretty flatlay?

I feel that we Bookstagrammers have all fallen into the trap of doing what we know works, oversaturating the feed with the same style of image and boring our followers? Perhaps this is me speculating, but it's difficult to stand out when everything looks so similar on the ol' Explore page.

I want to do something different, but still be all about the books and YA.

WHAT?

I'll still be doing my flatlays, because I love them. Just not every day. I'm going to try and share more of what I love with you all. Jewellery and old buildings and lipstick stains on coffee cups - all with a healthy dose of books in the shot too, of course.

I've made a moodboard of what I want my feed to emulate (above), but all my shots will involve books somehow. I don't want the overarching theme to get lost, so the only rule I am setting myself is every single image will feature a book! And the captions will probably get longer as I speak about what I'm reading in more depth. My blog will continue on as is, but you may notice a different style of imagery and perhaps more lifestyle posts popping up.

I hope you stick along with me on this crazy journey, as all I want is for you to enjoy what I'm creating!

Love,
C x



Hello Readers & Friends,

Hope you're all enjoying 2020 so far. Book 2 already!
So for full disclosure, I read and received this book proof from Hodder which is where I work, so I did not pay for it but nor was I gifted. That said, all opinions are 100% truthful as always!

This book was described as 'Sex and the City meets The Shining,' and reviews had come in saying it was 'treading the line between horror and thriller', which sounded right up my street. I was really excited to tuck into it and I fell in love with the beautiful neon pink sprayed edges as well.

So to summarise, the story follows four best friends, Carrie, Miranda, Sam- no, I'm just kidding. But there are four friends, and one of them, Julie, goes missing whilst out on a hike. Two years pass and they are all heartbroken, but her closest friend, Elise, refuses to give up on her BFF. Then, Julie miraculously turns up again, with no recollection of the last two years.
The girls organise a trip to reunite, booking into a strange, themed hotel in the middle of the woods. But when they meet up, they discover Julie is changed.

This book was extremely unsettling, the anxiety of the main character, Elise, seeping through the pages. It was downright creepy, with descriptions that left goosebumps on your skin and a bad taste at the back of your throat (in the best way).

I really enjoyed the realism of the friendships between the girls, the constant competition and comparisons they're battling through and the ways they all cope with the return of Julie. I loved Elise's relentless loyalty and love for Julie, and the way that the book wraps it up really instills a message of learning to accept loss into the reader.

It was strange, creepy, uncomfortable and, at the end, all quite terrifying. I really enjoyed it, read it very quickly and recommend it to fans of supernatural horrors. 4* from me. I've never read anything quite like it, but will definitely be reaching out for more horrors this year now.

Love,
C x


Hello Readers & Friends,

My first read of 2020! And it was a corker. I finally picked up Lady Midnight, which I had been putting off purely because of the size. I read it in three days, despite having to go out of my way to read it because my usual favourite places to read (commute, bathtub, etc) didn't work because the damn book was so big and heavy my arm would cramp holding it up!! So to finish in three days when I'm not a quick reader by book-blogger standards is definitely saying something. I gave it five stars, so a brilliant start to the year.

So, onto what I liked and what I didn't like. There will be very vague spoilers below, be warned!

What I enjoyed:

Characters. 
This series is filled with wonderfully diverse and complex characters. Whilst Clare can tend to write to stereotypes (and some, such as Cristina, definitely ticked this box), she also is able to write some really three-dimensional and broken characters, which are wonderful to see.
My favourites were Ty, as I don't think I've ever seen an autistic representation in YA fantasy before, and Mark and Kieran. I would actually love to see a Kieran spin-off similar to her Bane series, set in faerieland. Can she collab with Holly Black and make this happen please??!

Romance.
I really think Clare is Queen of Unrequited Fantasy Romance. She always takes the most cliche storylines (love triangles, especially) but manages to make them so gripping. It's kind of trashy but I love it, it's what she became known for after The Mortal Instruments series and it's what her fanbase loves. Julien is actually the first main love interest in one of her series that I didn't fancy. I have a big space in my heart from Jace from The Mortal Instruments, and I'm hardcore team Jem from The Infernal Devices, but Julien just isn't my type. That said, I love him with Emma and I love reading about their romance. I'd always wondered in other series what would happen if Parabatai fell in love and finally this book is fulfilling my need to know. Also, It's really nice seeing the Parabatai bond in more depth than other books, it's one of the most magical parts of the Shadowhunter world for me.

Setting.
Whilst TID was set in London and TMI was in New York, Lady Midnight finally introduces us to an entirely new Institute, based in LA which is a very starkly different scene from her other series. New York and London, in my opinion as a Londoner, are very similar in that they're crazy busy, kind of dirty and gross, and often quite grey. Having an Institute set by the beach in sunny LA with all the delicious tease of Hollywood was a really cool twist.

Antagonist.
The antagonist, though I guessed it early on, is beautifully complex and broken. Unlike Psycho Sebastian from TMI, our antagonist here is just so distressed and heartbroken and it adds another layer to the storyline.

What I didn't get on with so much:

Tavvy Inconsistencies. 
Is this child three years old or twelve? He spends 90% of the storyline asleep on someone, being carried from room to room like a baby and then at the end he is the one who eloquently delivers one of the biggest realisations of the entire investigation?! That, for me, was a bizarre change of his character. Perhaps Clare wanted him to have a bigger part to play as he had only slept through the rest of the book, but it felt weird.

Classic Clare Ending.
Cassandra Clare always begins a new story at the end of her books so you buy the next, instead of leaving a delicious cliff-hanger. She always does this, but for me it's more annoying. I want this story wrapped up, not a new one started!

Julien's Room
If you know, you know. The 'Julien Room Scene' was beyond creepy for me, it all got a bit Edward-From-Twilight.

Unecessary Plot Lies
Okay, this is my biggest gripe of the book. Not enough to drop it to 4 stars as it happened right at the very end, but I think it will be enough for me to knock a star or two off the next books' rating if I'm honest. It's a very classic Cassandra Clare thing to do, and she writes in a way that is so distinctive to her. In the same way that Stephen King books always have the 'and then it was all fine, just kidding, everything's still fucked' part, Cassandra Clare's books always have a 'and then the character made a lie that she didn't need to in order to keep the plot going' moment. So in this scenario, it's Emma not telling Julien the true reason why Parabatai cannot be in love, and instead deciding to be an asshole to him to push him away from her. (Classic.) It's just frustrating, because now the entire second book will be her pushing him away for no reason, instead of being an adult, telling him the truth, sitting down and working it out together. Very reminiscent of Will in TMI lying to everybody and being a dick to push them away instead of telling them the truth. And I never liked Will as a result of this, so I'm fearful I'll stop liking Emma in the second book, but let's wait and see.

I'm going to wait a while before reading the second as I love this world so much I'm afraid for it all to end, even though Clare is just releasing a new series I still want to drag it out as long as possible. I'm also, for the reason mentioned above, worried it will disappoint me.

As a side note, I would love to see a return to Jace and Clary's world now that they're 'adults'. (They're still five years younger than I am!) It seems like everyone else from TMI series is moving on (very young to be adopting children and marrying, but whatever, this is YA), and they have remained stagnant for some reason. I'd love to know why!

What do you think of the Shadowhunter world?

Love,
C x 




Hello Readers & Friends,

I managed to cram one final read in before the end of 2019!

I adored Queen of Nothing, for me it was the perfect conclusion to the trilogy.

If I'm honest, I hadn't been a fan of Jude and Cardan as a couple for the first two books. I felt like I couldn't get past some of Cardan's nastier traits and some of his deceptions and betrayals had hurt too much, but this book he finally turned himself around for me and really redeemed himself. I can finally join in with the Shipping of them, particularly in this book they were a really strong and positive couple. They complemented each other and there was still the wonderful tension and fear of deceit threaded throughout that we've gotten used to, keeping us constantly on our toes and hoping and praying that Cardan won't go back to... well, being Cardan.
I like that it's not a classic hate-to-love romance, you really feel the pain of the past in every interaction and the fear and anger at  themselves for falling for each other.



I loved all the magical depictions and descriptions of the world and the food. The food! It all sounded so delicious. Blocks of cheese and heels of loaf and honey-roasted birds and sugar-covered plums... it was all too much. I love the world-building of Elfhame and the secondary characters are all as complex and twisty as the main folk, which I love.

I also liked that as per most third books in trilogies, it was filled with action and scheming and plotting and war - but it wasn't repetitive or hard to follow. It was clear and engaging and I just couldn't put it down. Lastly, I love that we finally got to sneak a little peek at Cardan in the mortal world. It was light-hearted and fun in just the right way.


I truly think Holly Black is Queen of the Fae, I could immerse myself in her world forever.
I gave it 4.5*. I'm not sure why I didn't give it 5* to be honest. Maybe I should. I probably should.

Love,
C x