A girl with a mouth almost as big as her TBR list

Monthly Archives: June 2016

​Since I’ve been blogging for 2 years today, I thought I’d have a look back over the years and pick out some of some highlights.

My first highlight has to be starting my blog and interacting with people on there. I remember being so surprised when I reached 50 followers in the first few months becuase I couldn’t quite comprehend that people would be interested in reading posts where I babble on about books.

My second highlight was beginning Wattpad Wonders in January 2015 which is a series on my blog where I interview well known Wattpad authors. I loved this feature because it allowed me to share my love of Wattpad and introduce new people to the fabulous world of book blogging.

My next highlight was Armchair BEA in May 2015, which was the first event in the book blogging community that I took part in. It was wonderful to meet so many new bloggers and really feel a sense of belonging as we all bonded over our common love of books and shared disappointment that we weren’t actually attending BEA.

The following highlight was inspired by the one above, in July 2015, An Overthinking Teenager and I decided to host the Blog Olympics, which involved discussions, giveaways and Twitter chats. I was amazed by how well it went and how much everyone seemed to enjoy it.

My fifth highlight was another event in the blogging community, in October 2015, which was the Dewey’s 24 hour Readathon. I didn’t actually do any reading but I did do an awful lot of cheering and that was so much fun! I made some great friends and really got involved in the community. Afterwards I knew I had to do it again, so signed up again the next time.

The following highlight is the only one that took place in the real world and that is the My Kinda Book Club launch in November 2015, where I met the authors Sara Barnard and Harriet Reuter Hapgood as well as loads of lovely bloggers and the fab team at Pan Macmillan. It was wonderful to actually meet real life bloggers and attend my first ever blogger event.

My next highlight is from January 2016 when I wrote my #ToTheGirls2016, which was not only popular but one of my proudest posts I’ve ever written. It was in celebration of the UK release of All the Rage and was a letter I wrote to all girls everywhere, giving them my advice. I thought All the Rage was an incredibly powerful and moving book so I was pleased to support it in this way.

So, there you have it, my top few highlights from my two years of blogging. Obviously I could go on and on for days but I’ve tried to keep it short. Before I end this post, I’d like to say thank you. Thank you to everyone who follows me and reads my posts on a regular basis, leaving me lovely comments and likes. Thank you to everyone who has ever visited my blog and read my posts. Thank you so much for all of your support, love and kindness.

Since tomorrow is my blogiversary, I thought I’d share my 5 most popular posts of each of the three years, 2014, 2015 and 2016.

I only had 6 months in 2014, but my most popular posts on my blog were:

  1. Liebster Award
  2. Book Blog Name Tag
  3. Author Interview with T.M. Mendes
  4. Top Ten Books on my Fall TBR List
  5. Book Title Scavenger Hunt: Bookshelf Edition

In 2015, I had an entire year and wrote a whole load of posts. My most popular ones were:

  1. Wattpad Wonders #6
  2. Wattpad Wonders #4
  3. Wattpad Wonders – Anti bullying Day Edition
  4. Book of the Year Winner
  5. Teens Can Write Too Blog Chain – January

I know we’ve only had 6 months of this year so far, but up to date, my most popular posts are:

  1. Introductions Part 1: 2016 Debut Authors
  2. My Favourite Feminist Reads
  3. #ToTheGirls2016
  4. The Secret Life of a Book Blogger Tag
  5. Snap! Book covers that match

So there we have it! The top 5 posts for each of the years I’ve blogged in. Since tomorrow is the day of my actual blogiversary, I will be posting my highlights of the two years I’ve spent blogging.

I’ve recently been lucky enough to enjoy reading loads of great feminist novels and thought I’d share some with you. So without further ado, we have:

The Revenge Playbook – I feel like I’ve talked a lot about this book lately and I’m not at all apologetic about that! This book is about 4 completely different girls who band together to take the football team down. This book tackles losing your virginity or choosing not to, religion, rape and the attitudes that surround it as well as football culture in the US. It doesn’t pull any punches and refuses to hide the ugly truth.

revenge playbook

The Winner’s Curse series – The heroine of this novel, Kestrel is undoubtedly one of the best fantasy heroes I’ve ever read about. Rare for a woman in fantasy, she is strong mentally rather than physically. She is stubborn, brave, loyal and determined and above all a great example of a feminist character! Pretty dresses don’t mean you can’t be strong and feminist and she proves it.

the winners curse

Am I Normal Yet? – This book features teenage girls struggling through life, like we all do but actively thinking about feminism and why it is important and how it relates to them. These girls definitely don’t have it all figured out and this book is simply an invitation to join them as they attempt to navigate the world.

am i normal yet

All The Rage – I don’t even know where to begin when talking about this book. It will rip you into thousands of tiny pieces, that you will be left do assemble once you close the book. This book looks at the attitudes surrounding rape and is one of the most important books I’ve ever read. It is by no means an easy read, but a gripping, unforgettable novel that everyone should read.

all the rage

Eat, Sweat, Play – This one is the odd one out of the bunch as a non fiction book. However I think it definitely earned its place on the list as a fascinating exploring women in sport, covering a wide variety of topics and telling stories of amazing sportswomen from Olympians to mums. This book really inspired me to reclaim sport as my own and enjoy it for once.


Harry Potter – This famous series is full of fabulous feminists, especially Ginny and Hermione. Both are surrounded by boys and at times sexism, but they don’t let that stop them from doing anything, from dating who they like to helping defeat Voldemort. These two girls are the epitome of girl power and are definitely not to be trifled with.

harry potter

Lois Lane: Fallout- This book I only recently discovered and it follows the story of Lois Lane before she’s Superman’s girlfriend. Lois is smart, determined and follows her gut. As a teenager, she proves that is an amazing independent girl, who doesn’t need Superman to define her or make her complete. This is a fascinating insight into a well known and popular character.


Rites of Passage – I absolutely adore this book, which follows Sam as one of first girls ever admitted into a military school and the sexism and secret society she has to deal with. Sam overcomes some real obstacles and has to fight for her right to belong but she is by no means the only feminist in this book, they are people, both male and female who support. This book is unputdownable and truly fantastic!


Beautiful Broken Things – This book focuses on the rollercoaster that are female teenage friendships. It acknowledges that we all mess up and paints pictures of real girls with genuine problems, without stereotyping. The feminism in this book seems subtle, but it is found in the intricacies of each of the characters.


Since I finish my exams tomorrow, I’m going to have lots of time on my hands and fingers crossed the opportunity to read ALL of the books! I have a TBR list as long as the Great Wall of China, so hopefully this will give me some direction to read in.

I don’t think I’ll manage to read a book for all the categories, as I’m trying to only read books that I already own, but I’m aiming to get at least one bingo! (row of 5)

If you fancy joining me in the challenge or just want to find out more, check out Bekka at Pretty Deadly Reviews, who is hosting the bingo.


So this is the bingo board!

I’m not sure which books I’m going to read yet, but I’ve put a picture below of my TBR shelf, so you guys can give me recommendations for each square!

tbr shelf

Let me know which books I should read and if you’re joining in too!

 What does it mean to be a sporty woman in the 21st century? From the launch of Net-A-Sporter, serving up sports clothing for fashionistas, to the introduction of #plankie as the new Instagram selfie for yoga bunnies; exercise for women has finally gone mainstream.

But if sweating has never been so hot for female celebrities, then why are there still so many obstacles for girls and women when it comes to sport? Why do girls still hate school sports lessons? Why is sport consistently defined as male territory, with TV cameras replicating the male gaze as they search out the most beautiful women in the crowd? Will women ever flock to watch football, rugby and boxing in their millions? Or turn up to the park with friends for a Sunday morning kickabout? How long do we have to wait to see the first multi-millionaire female footballer or basketball player?

Eat Sweat Play is an engaging and inspirational work by sports writer Anna Kessel.


This book was sent to me for free to review by Pan Macmillan, but that does not affect my views in any way. These thoughts are all my honest opinion.

I picked this book up about half way through my exams when I hadn’t read a book in over a month and knew I wouldn’t have that much time to read. This book immediately drew me in and was perfect for me to pick up and put down in the midst of all my revision. This is the first non-fiction book I’ve read in a long time as I’m a self professed non-fiction hater, who would want to read about reality, when you could live in a fictional world?

I’m so glad I bucked my recent trend and picked this book up. I was sent an email from Pan Macmillan offering this book to me and since I’ve recently started to exercise more with a struggle, I felt like this book was written directly for me and I know I won’t be the only girl who feels that way.

This book has already prompted me to start a conversation with my parents at the dinner table about women in sport. I am forcing my dad, who never reads to read this book, shortly followed by my mum. I want to shout about this book from the rooftops and force everyone I’ve ever met to read this, regardless of their gender.

This book is powerful, inspiring and packed full of amazing stories of amazing women, who are Olympic athletes, mums, commentators and everything else you can imagine. This book has a common thread interwoven through the many stories it tells and that is so relevant to me and any other woman who has ever thought about sport.

I would recommend this book to any woman regardless of her current relationship with sport. It makes me want to go and try every sport out there until I find one I fall in love in. It makes me want to watch women’s sport and start conversations about it. It makes me want to change the world through sport, and most importantly makes me believe that I can.

100% a five star read for me!


Nights outlights out

Looking at my bookshelves the other day, I noticed that some of my books have really similar covers, so I thought that I’d play a game of snap with the books I own.

My first pair, which sparked this entire idea of matching book covers are:

Before I Fall and Before I Die

Both of these books have a teenage girl, lying by herself in the grass and at first glace do look almost identical, particularly because they have similar titles beginning with ‘Before I’. I’ve only read one of these books, but I’m interested to see if they have similar themes as well as similar covers.

My next set of similar covers are:

Finding Sky and Shiver

This pair aren’t quite as close as the first pair, but I feel like they have similar graphics themes going on. They both have leaves and branches, that part in the middle for the title. I adore this style of cover because it’s so simple yet really attractive and eye catching, especially since they are both black and white with one small splash of red.

Pair number three of matching book covers is:

Beautiful  Broken Things and Rebel of the Sands

At first glance, these two don’t seem that alike in comparison to the first two pairs, but in reality, both of these book covers have eye catching, gorgeous gold foil that points inwards to the title. If I could have two books framed as pictures on my wall, I’d definitely pick these two because they are serious works of art! Well done to whoever designed these covers, you did good!

My fourth snap! is:

Perks of Being a Wallflower and Lois Lane: Fallout

From the pictures, these two don’t look at all alike but in reality, behind the image of the girl, the background is text from the novel, like in the Perks of Being a Wallflower cover. I think that is a really cool idea and really makes a cover unique to its book.

The next pair of matching covers are:

Flawed and The Fire

The main link between these two cover is the large F that is symbolic for the book and dominates the cover. It immeadiately draws the eye in both cases and although the covers are almost opposites, you can clearly see the similarity. Both take a similar idea but put their own spin on it which I think is cool.

The penultimate pair of covers are:

Starcrossed and Across the Universe

These two both involve a couple about to kiss, leaning towards each other, with a dramatic background, either space or fire. Though the couples are at different orientations, the ideas behind both covers are similar, with the figures being almost outlines, creating a sense of mystery and the background setting the scene.

Last, but not least, the matching pair are:

The Hunger Games and Legend

Both books are dystopians and have links to rebellion so I really like the idea of a simple cover, with one solid colour and then the symbol. Sometimes less is more and that is definitely true in both of these cases. It makes the cover look really dramatic and instantly draws the eye.

So there we go! The 7 pairs of books off my shelves that I think match! Let me know if you can think of any other pairs, I’d love to hear your thoughts.

This haunting story centers on Jonas, who lives in a seemingly ideal, if colourless, world of conformity and contentment. Not until he’s given his life assignment as the Receiver of Memory does he begin to understand the dark, complex secrets behind his fragile community.

the giver

This classic dystopian is not only timeless but truly enjoyable novel for a anyone and everyone who chooses to pick it up. This book has been on my TBR shelf for over a year after I asked for it for Christmas. I decided to pick it up for the Dewey’s 24 hour readathon since it seemed short and like a quick read.
Initially I was unsure about this book but despite the young male protagonist, I really related to him and lived following on the journey he went on. The character development was amazing, as Jonas went from mindlessly obedient  to rebelliously discovering a whole new world that had previously been hidden to him.
This book is a challenging one to read as it really makes you question the world we live in. It makes you wonder which is more important, safety or freedom? Initially Jonas’ world seems perfect but as you continue to read its darker secrets are revealed and honestly it is rather frightening. The most unnerving part of all this is that it’s not a stretch of the imagination to believe in a world like this becoming our own.
The characters are all so interesting as well because know they are morally wrong but you can’t bring yourself to hate them as you know they’ve been brainwashed. Jonas’ dad’s job is a particularly interesting moral dilemma and he simply sees it as doing the right thing for society yet in our eyes, he is committing murder. Throughout the novel, there are sinister undertones that are so subtle you can almost ignore them, but when you think about them, they are shocking to us.
This novel has such a unique cast that really spans the generations, which I think is something that is missing in a lot of books aimed at young people. Not only does Jonas have friends his own age, but a younger sister, baby brother, parents and the Giver. These characters all manage to have their own personalities whilst also all clearly having the society’s view imprinted on them.
The ending to this novel is the cliff hanger of all cliff hangers. I wouldn’t spoil it but simply say everything is uncertain at the end of the novel. I immediately bought the next book but there were no answers to be found there. I think the fourth novel brings the previous three novels together so might finally satisfy my curiosity so I’m looking forward to reading the third and fourth books in this series.
Some parts of this novel are horrifying and shocking whilst others are easy to imagine which is what makes this book such a roller coaster of emotions and such a thought provoking read!
Overall I would say the Giver is a great read for lovers of dystopian and those who have never read dystopia before. Perfect for those of every age and those who love books or hardly read them. This books is any entertaining story that makes you question what it means to be human. It should be required reading for all!

My Top Five Buzzwords

After seeing this post on Liam’s Library about his book buzzwords, I had a think and came up with five of my own buzzwords when it comes to books. I thought it was a really cool idea that Liam came up with so I was excited to come up with my own.

  1. Rebellion – This word most often comes up in dystopian novels and that is either annoyingly cliché or super epic but I especially love rebellion when it comes up in fantasy novels. I’m just so intrigued by the idea of the people rising up against those in power to make a change.
  2. Magic – This can come in so many forms, which is part of the reason it’s so awesome. Magic isn’t restricted to one type and varies from novel to novel so you never know what to expect. The only thing you can be certain of is that it’s bound to be epic!
  3. School – Books about school particularly interest me, perhaps because I’m still in school. This has been a buzzword of mine for quite a while, from Malory Towers to The Gallagher Girls to Harry Potter. I especially love boarding schools that have an unusual twist.
  4. Feminism – Any book with feminism is sure to be a win with me! Recently I’ve read a few feminist YA novels that I’ve really enjoyed so this one is definitely a buzzword for me because it doesn’t dictate anything about the books expect it’s likely to be awesome. Feminist novels can be about any topic, they just have the sort of ideals I believe in.
  5. Class/caste system – I haven’t read many books that include this but it’s an idea that really intrigues me especially when it’s included in a fantasy or historical setting.  I love how people are divided up and stereotyped but then manage to break out of society’s rules and expectations.

Think about the most famous superhero. The one you can’t help but see plastered on huge billboards, advertising the latest movie. The one little children clutch tightly in their chubby hands. The one on coffee cups, t-shirts, posters and backpacks. You name it, they’re on it, somewhere.

So you’ve got this picture in your head right? Of this perfect superhero? I’ll bet you a tenner he’s male, fifty quid, they’re white and one hundred quid that they’re straight. And I’m confident I’ll lose very little of my money.

But why is this? Why are the biggest superheroes straight, white men? Is it because any else is incapable of saving the world? That’s absurd and certainly not true. Comic books paint pictures of superheroes of every race, colour, sexuality and gender but for some reason these people don’t end up on our big screens.

You might think I’m exaggerating. Trust me, I’m not. I googled a list of Marvel films and every single one which is based around a single superhero is about a straight white male, Iron Man, Thor, Captain America and so on. I’m not trying to devalue these superheroes because I love them to bits. I just think we need a change.

Women only appear in superhero movies as a sidekick or the less famous part of a team, I’m talking about women like Pepper Potts and Natasha Romanoff. The same is true with people of colour like Sam Wilson and James Rhodes. They don’t get their own movie but they’re used by Hollwood to prove they’re diverse.

We’re definitely getting better. Think about the difference between the cast of the first Avengers film and the cast of Captain America: Civil War. There has been an improvement, but these steps are being taken too slowly and too cautiously. Hollywood needs to take a leap of faith away from what we’re all used to in superhero films and towards what our world really looks like.

What do you think? What’s your take on this issue? Let me know!