Saturday 30 August 2014

Last Festival Day with a College Drama.

Hello Dudes, yeah I totally greet people as dude. So last Sunday I went to the Edinburgh International Book Festival for the last time this year.

This time we took the car up because everyone in my household was meant to be coming. There didn't but we had missed the bus by that point that became clear. My parents ended up abandoning me at the gates where I went to the first event by myself which was Alternative Worlds with Maureen Johnson and Leigh Bardugo (you dear reader can watch on YouTube: and there also interview on the festival's channel as well).

There are both very entertaining, intelligent women and got interesting questions. There was the cringe worthy one of about importance of strong female characters. It was the framing of it that was really bad and the audience of mostly women laughed at it. Also I don't think a lack of well define characters are not issue in books, yes you have examples of cliché and terrible characterisation e.g. Twilight. Its TV and film that suffers from the lack of deep female characters and also diversity in general. What you get mostly is American White Men and even mostly them ain't characterised to a good standard. Most of them are actually the same person; just in different but kinda the same setting. guess I should go back to talking about the festival. The only thing is that Maureen Johnson talked more about Suite Scarlett series than the Shades of London series which was the one feature in the info about the talk. After sitting in the front awkwardly by myself just adjusting my trolley (that brought back after getting sent replacement wheels), I went to the signing where I reveal that trolley was full of books, mainly Maureen Johnson. She even took a picture and posted it to twitter.

She did sign them all, I was aware it was ridiculous amount to bring with me but I couldn't decided which ones to bring. I just suck at decision making and I did leave a book at home... by accident.

Leigh Bardugo signed two of my books to Rachel & Verna. She fixed it and signed the other two to me alone.

Update: It is now 2017 and I never finished this so who knows what the College Drama was.

Saturday 23 August 2014

Room 601

Hello People,  I have had a fun exciting week of broken printers and terrible attempts of a Read-a-thon. I'm doing the Bout of Books read-a-thon but I also watched the whole Total Drama Island over two days so you know I'm committed. It not been terrible, but I don't think I've read more than I might in a normal week. I want to finish two books today as I'm going to a event where the author is talking about the series. I highly doubt it will happen.

I have continued walking as a form of exercise. In fact, in spirit of the readathon I attempted to walk whilst read and actually finished reading Shadow and Bones by Leigh Bardugo with this method and did tonight as well. I stayed out for an hour and half, my hands were freezing and my right thumb feels weird and sore from the strain of holding the book in one hand for that long. It's not a perfect method of making walking, sure less boring, getting more reading done as I exercise but my lap time doubles and I'm sure I would read quicker if I was just focusing on the reading. I need a solution to make my hourly walking less boring. I'm thinking of trying audio books, I don't think audio books are me though because my brain wanders when I'm listening to something.

I went to the Edinburgh Festive again last week (and going for the last time this year tomorrow :() I saw Sarah J. Mass and had another event with Lauren Oliver, Tanya Byrne and Erin Lange. The Sarah J. Mass one was meant to be her and another author but he wasn't there due to "Personal Issues". I didn't care about him, but I'm such a nosy person I wonder what happen. This is why tabloids exist. I don't think a sole writer/author base one will ever exist thankfully. That would be really depressing. They are really depressing.

Back to the point, it was petty cool entertaining hearing Sarah J. Mass talk and basically tell half the audience to get out through the process. Maybe more than that. But at one point I should have gotten out because I never watched sailor moon or something. Also Disney being secretly creepy and Buffy. There had early copies of Heir of Fire on sale but they sold out before I found out. It's a bummer because I was there last week. Oh, well that what I get for not reading the review copy before I saw her.

She got the stupid question of ideal casting. From this book festival it just proves to me how many dumb questions authors get. Especially, since she been asked that tons of times and if a film is made she have none or little say over who gets cast. Also books are not there to made into films. There is a rant to this but we shall leave it to another time.

 It was as busy as expected for Sarah J. Mass signing, in fact I left the festival between events and when I came back she was still signing after 2 hours or something.

The Trio of Authors was interesting. Lauren Oliver dominated a lot, Erin Lange was quiet and Tanya Byrne made up the rest of the silence. Interesting things were discussed like the need for diversity in books and how Lauren Oliver's book are all about fear (the point was writers do tend to write about the same thing, they've wrote about before).

I had a great time at the festival once again. Lauren Oliver asked me if was my first time at the festival and I awkwardly said no but it was my first year. I also got told by Sarah J. Mass that she liked my hair so another thing to add to "Author's think I'm cool" list. More confusion over my name.

Outside the festival was eventfully. I brought trolley bag with me and the wheel fell apart as soon as we got off the bus so it was a good thing we had hotel room which was spookily the same number as last week's hotel room 601. There was this weird bit of fabric on the bottom bed that I just feel doesn't belong there. But was lovely colour to wear. Also lots of Americans where we were staying, would stay there again to stalk them (I am completely kidding).

 My mum and my sister had came with me this time so we went out to TGIF, which is by the way is more expensive in Edinburgh than say Glasgow. I got ribs but you really go there for the starters. If anything get starters and dessert. Also cocktails are good I'm told.

We also went shopping, found earphones and argued over the best place to get the bus.

I'm off to walk and try to finish the Gisha trilogy.

Wednesday 20 August 2014

Book Review: Follow Me Down by Tanya Byrne

Boarding schools are fun and tragic places in YA novels.

When 16-year-old Adamma Okomma, a Nigerian diplomat's daughter, arrives at exclusive Crofton College in Wiltshire, she is immediately drawn to beautiful, tempestuous, unpredictable Scarlett Chiltern. Adamma and Scarlett become inseparable - until a boy comes between them. Soon the battle lines are drawn and Adamma is shunned by Scarlett and her privileged peers. But then Scarlett goes missing and everything takes a darker turn.

This is a cool book with a cool writer. coolio.

The book is formatted into an interesting way with the book being a cycle. The story switches between the present, the day Scarlett disappears and from the day Adamma meets Scarlett. So if you want you could just read the past entries first and then go back and read the present part but probably won’t be as good of experience since the book wasn’t design to be read that way. Maybe do that if you decide to reread it. 

The plot had you guessing and doubting where Scarlett had gotten off to. The relationship between Adamma and Scarlett was really well done and believable. I felt really invested with the characters by the end of the book and heavy effected by what occurs between them all.

I really love the end scene and its kinda perfect for the book.

Overall, I gave this book 4 out of 5 stars for drinking in the woods. Whilst really liking this book, I did find it bit predictable near the end but it still amazingly written so read it.

Saturday 16 August 2014

First Edinburgh Book Festival Trip

Haló people, so I went to the Edinburgh International Book Festival last Saturday and made a very long video about it. Just the usual stuff of book signing, long bus rides, issues ridden hostels, authors thinking I'm cool. Hey, stopping laughing. Lucy Ivison (co-writer of Lobsters with Tom Ellen) said my name was cool and then David Levithan said my bag was cool therefore I am cool.

Or just cold. My body temperature does sit slightly under average body temperature.

What was I saying? Right, the Edinburgh Book Festival was as fun as I expected. Edinburgh the city wasn't as busy as I expected. It was busy though, but the streets were not packed that you could barely move, I didn't expect that though. Just busier I guess.

The bus was a fun six hours and more. I mostly read during the journey. The hostel was problematic but actually fine.

Authors are everywhere
We went to the Scottish National Gallery and the Portrait one. There were both sort of shit. The Gallery is tiny and full of terrible abstract art at the moment. There is literally a bunch of clear plastic sheets as soon as you walk in hanging from the roof. Also the staff think a backpack and a rucksack are the same thing. One of the lockers swallowed my pound and I never had another one to give it so I had to carry my bag at my side.

We also ended up buying a suitcase from Primark as my mum had became obsessed with the idea of a bag with wheels. My books ended up there. I had promised my mum I wouldn't buy anything but once I was there how could I resist. Books that are signed are rare thing for me. I brought all Jennifer E. Smith's book up there and  two of David Leviathan's books to get them signed by the authors. It was cool being up there if you want to details, you watch my vid about it as I don't feel like going through it again but here are some pictures.

Well, I'm off to get ready for tomorrow trip to Edinburgh and avoid my mother.

Friday 15 August 2014

Bout of Books 11

 I shall be participating in the Bouts of Books again (missed the last one out), a week long readathon from the 18th to the 24th August 2014.

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, August 18th and runs through Sunday, August 24th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure, and the only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books read in a week. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 11 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team.

I'm just going to put my goals here.

My Goals

  • To finish reading Edinburgh International Book Festival related books.
  • To catch up on some of my review books.

Books to Read

  • The Grisha Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo
  • The Boy in the Smoke by Maureen Johnson
  • American Savage by Matt Whyman
  • (Finished reading) Allies & Assassins by Justin Somper

Time Devoted to Reading 

I plan to read 5 hours a day most of the week.


Monday 18.8.14 (wrote 2.46pm, Tuesday)
What I read today: Dead Ends by Erin Lange
Total of books read today: 1
No. of books started today: 0
No. of pages read today: 48 pages
Books Finished: 0
Thoughts: Today wasn't good but I was away from home for most of it so I didn't expect it to go that well away.

Tuesday 19.8.14 (wrote 12.14am, Wed. )

What I read today: Dead Ends by Erin Lange, American Savage by Matt Whyman
Total of books read today: 2
No. of books started today: 1
No. of pages read today: 362 pages
Pages read total: 410 pages
Books Finished Today: 1
Total Books Finished:1
Thoughts: Could have been better.

Wednesday 20.8.14 (wrote 1.57pm, Thursday)

What I read today: American Savage by Matt Whyman
Total of books read today: 1
No. of books started today: none
No. of pages read today: 26 pages
Pages read total: 436 pages
Books Finished Today: none
Total Books Finished:1
Thoughts: Wasted a lot of time trying to fix a printer and then family stuff. Try to make up for it tomorrow hopefully.

Thursday 21.8.14 (wrote 2.01amFriday)

What I read today: American Savage by Matt Whyman, The Boy in the Smoke by Maureen Johnson, Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
Total of books read today: 3
No. of books started today: 2
No. of pages read today: 251 pages
Pages read total: 687 pages
Books Finished Today: 2

Total Books Finished: 3
Thoughts:Better, but not that great.

Friday 22.8.14 (wrote 12.25am, Saturday)

What I read today: Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo, The Witch of Duva by Leigh Bardugo, The Tailor by Leigh Bardugo, Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo
Total of books read today: 2 (and things)
No. of books started today: 1 (and things)
No. of pages read today: 402 pages
Pages read total: 1089 pages
Books Finished Today: 1 (and two short things)

Total Books Finished: 4 (and things)
Thoughts: So Leigh Bardugo, hur? Better, but I need to read two novels (or the best part of them) tomorrow to meet my goals. I actually finished reading Shadow and Bones whilst walking a dirt road.

Saturday 23.8.14 (wrote 12.40am)

What I read today: Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo, Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo
Total of books read today: 2
No. of books started today: 1
No. of pages read today: 408 pages
Pages read total: 1497 pages
Books Finished Today: 1
Total Books Finished: 5 (and 2 things)
Thoughts: Good, I guess. I walked an hour and forty-five minutes. I probably got more walking and reading done if I had separated that time doing them separately, but I get bored walking and restless reading. My thumb hurts. Annoyed with myself that I didn't spend all my free time reading today though.

Sunday 24.8.14 (wrote )

What I read today: The Too-Clever Fox by Leigh Bardugo, Little Knife by Leigh Bardugo
Total of books read today: (2 things)
No. of books started today: (2 things)
No. of pages read today: 64 pages
Pages read total: 1561 pages
Books Finished Today: (2 things)

Total Books Finished: 5 (and 4 things)
Thoughts: I went to a book festival and didn't read anything on the way up and down.

Overall Thoughts: It was alright. Not that great really. 

Wednesday 13 August 2014

Book Review: Lobsters (also now know as A Totally Awkward Love Story) by Tom Ellen & Lucy Ivison

Don't buy books with Lobsters on them unless they have a daisy in their claw and

Sam and Hannah only have the holidays to find 'The One'. Their lobster. But instead of being epic, their summer is looking awkward. They must navigate social misunderstandings, the plotting of well-meaning friends, and their own fears of being virgins for ever to find happiness. But fate is at work to bring them together. And in the end, it all boils down to love.

I saw this book on Netgalley and didn't click on it because it looked like a American book and contemporary American romances is not something I'm not interest in, well because it everywhere. Of course going off the cover, wellies are not very American so I should have known that it wasn't set in the states. 

 I have also met these authors at the Edinburgh Book Festival (which is experience to be found here).

This is a duo perspective with Ellen writing the point of view of the boy character Sam and Ivison writing the point of view of Hannah. The story follows both them and their friends' summer. They live near one another but don't know each other at the start of the novel. They of course bump into each in comical ways through out the summer and hilarity insure.

 I really enjoyed this book as its funny and the characters are realistic. They are teenagers and do dumb things like teenagers do. I love finding realistic teens in YA (which is mainly why I don't read contemporary American romances).

They take the character to fun places such as music festival which reminded me fond memories of the time I went to TTIP the summer I left school.I also just want to say that there is a ton of Harry Potter references in this book. 

 Overall, I gave this book 5 out of 5 stars for names on doors. I really loved this book and I'm so glad that Edinburgh International Book Festival made me pick this masterpiece of YA contemporary (I'm not totally laughing from writing that last bit. I'm thinking of scene from the novel). I would totally recommend you read this book on bus on way and back to a Book Festival.

Saturday 9 August 2014

Wasps on Set.

They're never know. Shit, I told you.
You can turn part of a stage into a bed and just hope the audience doesn't noticed that there is clearly no  mattress under the duvey or sees the wood behind the pillows.

I spent most of this week on a film set of sorts. It's been interesting, especially being the oldest person in the Young Film Club.

Monday was petty boring as I wasn't in any scenes and didn't get to do any of the filming. We gained two people. We lost someone, only had someone that day and we were informed that we were only going to have one of the main character's actor for two days. We now randomly have actual actor in the film. He's been Doctor Who and everything so I'm amused. we also filmed outside without a tripod that we could attach the camera to. Locations included: outside of high school having work done (strange dust was coming from the roof); a graveyard and turning a meeting room into a class room. I also lay on the floor to film people's feet.

Tuesday, I had my first awkward experience of being in front of the camera. I could hear my accent getting stronger for some reason and said a line three times, a different way each time. I prefer being behind the camera, unless it's my camera. We went up to the woods that day which was not a fun experience. My legs hurt with all my walking last week. I kinda stopped that whilst we were filming. I brought my own tripod with me so we could have steady shot fun.

Wednesday was more wood fun but now haunted dolls. I did one of the dolls make up and it indeed sucked..You think I have began to be good after all this time of painting weird things on my face. I was a lot more gentle than others with putting make-up on. I did the last of my shooting that day which was interesting.

Thursday was not a productive day. We made a fake bed and set up a kitchen scene in a town hall but the needed actor never arrived so we had used body doubles for the bedroom scenes, hopefully the audience will see what we wanted them to see. We did some editing, I did most of it with quite a quick pace so by the end of that day we had a whole scene of footage edited, which gave us three minutes and we had another minute edited from an another day so we have four whole minutes edited. Though, there might be changes made to what's been edited. For example, someone in the background looks up and smiles into the camera. We might get away with it but I'll know.  Today was also the only day where I brought the case for the tripod, it would have been helpfully on the days we walked up to the woods. Lots of wasps after us and everyone that day.  My age was also reveal and I was the only only adult on set (that day, there's a 17 year old involved) besides the gun running the thing.

 So that wrap on my part of the filming of the film, there is still addiction footage and two scenes to be filmed. There meant to be editing sessions happening and said I would help with that. Not sure why considering I hate editing and I have a massive pile of footage of my own I should really get around to editing. All good for the personal statement and that.

I'm off now to wander around Edinburgh and meet authors.

Saturday 2 August 2014

Going Loomy

My mum has gotten me addicted to the current craft trend: Loom Bands. They've been big for a while but as I no longer go to school or leave the house I didn't know this. My mum had brought a packet of "Frozen" Loom Bands, which was actually odd choice of colours including a pale pink, two oranges, white, black and barely any pale blue. I started on Thursday and now on to "advance" patterns; quickly running out of bands; own five looms. I don't actually have four of those looms in my possession as I ordered them online and have not yet to arrived.

My mum brought me one after I ask her to get me more bands since I ran out and my orders won't arrive for a while. I order two sets with cases containing a  loom and bands. One of the looms is not much use and I brought the other one mainly for the loom. I also broke today and brought actual Rainbow Loom and the Monster Tail. The cheap one my mum brought me worked but was annoying with bending and coming out the base. I couldn't find a review saying whether it was worth it or not to get the Monster Tail so I will have to do that my review myself.

I'm off to attempt making loom bracelets whilst walking because I have so little to say this week.