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

My Top Ten Songs on my Christmas Playlist

My Favourite Christmas Songs.png

On this, the 4th day of Blogmas I thought I’d share my 10 favourite Christmas songs that are absolutely perfect for wrapping presents to, baking Christmas cookies to or just having a dance party to.

  1. Do They Know it’s Christmas?
  2. Mistletoe and Wine
  3. Last Christmas
  4. All I want for Christmas is You
  5. Happy Xmas
  6. Lonely This Christmas
  7. Driving Home for Christmas
  8. Santa Baby
  9. Wonderful Christmastime
  10. Saviour’s Day

So there you have it! Just a quick post today, sharing some of my Christmas tunes, what are some of your favourite songs for the season? Have I missed any great ones?

 

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Books I would gift my younger self

Today, on the third day of Blogmas I am delighted to have Rebecca from This Booky Place with me as a guest poster! She’s shared with us 3 books she would give to her younger self, so let’s take a look!

Moxie by Jennifer Mathieu

Vivian Carter is fed up. Fed up with a school administration at her small-town Texas high school that thinks the football team can do no wrong. Fed up with sexist dress codes, hallway harassment, and gross comments from guys during class. But most of all, Viv Carter is fed up with always following the rules.

Viv’s mom was a tough-as-nails, punk rock Riot Grrrl in the ’90s, and now Viv takes a page from her mother’s past and creates a feminist zine that she distributes anonymously to her classmates. She’s just blowing off steam, but other girls respond. As Viv forges friendships with other young women across the divides of cliques and popularity rankings, she realizes that what she has started is nothing short of a girl revolution.

I remember being fourteen and even though I wouldn’t say I ever personally experienced gender repression as such, I never felt particularly ‘girly’ and I feel like it made me stand out in certain friendship groups. I didn’t like sport either so it wasn’t like I fit into a boyish category either, the only things I really had a passion for were music and reading, Moxie is definitely a club I would have joined. It would have been nice to have a book like this when I was younger so that I could start my own club, I didn’t really have a group of people like that at school and that’s why fourteen-year-old Rebecca would get a copy of Moxie.

It Only Happens In The Movies by Holly Bourne

Audrey is over romance. Since her parents’ relationship imploded her mother’s been catatonic, so she takes a cinema job to get out of the house. But there she meets wannabe film-maker Harry.

Nobody expects Audrey and Harry to fall in love as hard and fast as they do. But that doesn’t mean things are easy.

Because real love isn’t like the movies…

When I read this book I almost couldn’t believe how personal the story was to me. So many things that the main character, Audrey, was going through was things that I had to deal with when I was younger, the difference being that Audrey is this kick ass feminist character and was much better equipped to deal with things than I was back then. If I’d had this book when I was sixteen then I believe that I could have made some better relationship decisions, so that’s why I’m gifting this to sixteen-year-old Rebecca.

Freshers by Tom Ellen and Lucy Ivision

Uni beckons. Phoebe can’t wait to be a fresher – especially since her crush from school will be there too. She’ll be totally different at Uni: cooler, prettier, smarter … the perfect potential girlfriend. She’ll reinvent herself completely. But Luke’s oblivious, still reeling from the fallout of the break-up with his ex. Thrown head first into a world of new friends, parties and social media disasters – can Phoebe and Luke survive the year, let alone find each other?

When I went to university I stayed home during my first year, and I think that meant I missed out on some experiences. Although not everything that the characters go through is good, I envied a lot of what was going on for them, and what I saw other people doing in the real world. I always wanted to join in but I just didn’t have the confidence, I think Fresher’s would have given me more incentive to join societies and do social activities outside of my class friendship group. If I could gift this book to eighteen-year-old Rebecca I can’t garauntee that it would have changed everything but I like to think I’d at least find a Quidditch society, and yes that is a part of the book!

And those are the three books I would gift to myself if I could. I want to thank Emily for hosting me on her blog and I hope you enjoy the rest of her Blogmas posts. I’m also doing Blogmas over at http://www.thisbookyplace.co.uk!

Thank you so much Rebecca for such a fab post – I’d definitely recommend you check out her blog now!

My Favourite Christmas Films

On this, the second day of December and of Blogmas, I thought I’d share with you some of my favourite films to watch during the festive season!

  1. Nativity! – I don’t really feel like this one needs much explaining – the kids are so cute, the songs are catchy and it’s all round a feel good film for all the family.nativity
  2. The Snowman – This one just has lots of fond childhood memories attached particularly of watching it with my Nana, who has since passed away.the snowman
  3. Home Alone – How can you not love this Christmas movie? It’s one everyone can enjoy! I spent last Christmastime in the US, some of which I spent in New York where my family and I couldn’t help but hunt down all the places from this film.home alone
  4. Elf – This film is just good fun – it’s downright hilarious in some places and is a great way to get into the Christmas spirit.elf
  5. Miracle on 34th Street – Now this one is a true classic, definitely another I remember watching with my family as a child. There’s just something very nostalgic about Christmas films.34thSo what are your favourite Christmas films? What one film MUST you watch every holiday season?

Blogmas Q&A

For this first of my hopefully 25 Blogmas posts I thought I’d do a little Q&A of questions you guys asked me on Twitter! So without further ado let’s begin!

Favourite Christmas chocolates?

Ooooh this is a tricky one – I enjoy a Terry’s chocolate orange or a box of Heroes

Favourite film?

Favourite Disney character?

Hmm let me think – there are a few I like – I love Mulan, Rapunzel and Baymax. Mulan is just really cool, I mean she saves the whole of China! Rapunzel makes me laugh and is a much more realistic type of princess. And Baymas? He’s so cute and funny!

baymax

Favourite ice cream flavour?

Save our Swirled from Ben and Jerry’s or a Pink Grapefruit Sorbet

A food you hate?

Mushrooms – sorry they’re just gross!

Does my family have any Christmas traditions?

Well we always go to church together on Christmas Eve for the family carol service before returning home to have nibbles as a tea whilst my younger cousins scatter the reindeer dust and set out the mince pie and milk for Santa. As for Christmas day itself I don’t think we have any particular traditions.

What will I be having for Christmas dinner this year?

Turkey and roast potatoes with gravy and Yorkshire puddings and a whole array of vegetables including sprouts of course, and carrots and broccoli and roast parsnips. And how could we forget my favourite part of Christmas dinner – the pigs in blankets!

What fictional family would I want to spend with Christmas with?

Why are all these questions so hard??? I think I’d have to say the Weasley family though, those guys are so much fun and I’d love a jumper knitted by Mrs Weasley.

Favourite Christmas reads?

I can’t think of any books that I’ve read which are specifically Christmas reads so I’d love some recs on this one. Which Christmas books have you read and enjoyed?

I might do another Q&A later on in Blogmas if you guys have any more questions for me! Leave them in the comments!

NetGalley Books I have yet to read

netgalley

If you’ve been book blogging for any length of time, you’ll have heard of Netgalley – a website for book bloggers and reviewers to receive ARCs and review them. Unfortunately Netgalley is both a blessing and curse – it’s great to receive this books and get excited about them before they’re released but there’s always a problem with getting too excited and requesting all the books! When I was just a baby book blogger, this happened to me, leaving me with a whole pile of unread books that I’ve requested and committed to reviewing.

So here’s my list:

  • The Sister Pact by Stacie Ramey
  • Fire Colour One by Jenny Valentine
  • Demon Road by Derek Landy
  • Polaris Awakening anthology
  • In Search of Sam by Kristin Butcher
  • Those Girls by Lauren Saft
  • The Memory Hit by Carla Spradbery
  • The Hidden Pivot by Jack Tapscott and Judith Tapscott
  • From a Distant Star by Karen McQuestion
  • It’s About Love by Steven Camden
  • Faking Perfect by Rebecca Phillips
  • Tape by Steven Camden
  • Love Hurts by Malorie Blackman
  • Mind Games by Teri Terry
  • Locked by Parker Whitter
  • Trial by Fire by Josephine Angelini
  • Blood Entwines by Caroline Healy
  • Heart of Dread: Frozen by Melissa de la Cruz and Michael Johnston
  • Unmarked by Kami Garcia

Have you read any of these books? Which would you recommend I start with? Have you got any tips for tackling a Netgalley TBR list? Let me know!

Audible Review

So for the first time ever, I tested out Audible. If you have an Amazon account, you can get a free trial month of Audible that gives you one credit. If you don’t know how the Audible system works, basically you get a credit per month which entitles to you to one audiobook. (Disclaimer : I am the furthest thing from an expert, so if you want any more details, don’t rely on me!)

Since it was free, I decided why not give it a go? It would give me a free book and everyone knows how much I love a free book! I decided to go for Geekerella by Ashley Poston because it was nominated in the Goodreads awards and I fancied the sound of it. So I downloaded the Audible app and my audiobook adventure began!

I genuinely can’t remember the last time I listened to an audiobook – I think we used to listen to Roald Dahl audiobooks on long car journeys when we were little, so I wasn’t sure how the audiobook thing would work out. Here is my list of pros and cons related to Audible:

Pros:

  • You can listen to books on the go, when you can’t really read books, for example I can listen to Audible when I walk home from school, allowing me to squeeze in extra reading time.
  • It has loads of cool features and settings such as a sleep timer, a button free mode, the ability to just skip back or forward 30 seconds, which helps remind me what’s happening.
  • For the first audiobook it is 100% free, which is a really good deal because nowadays books and especially audiobooks are super expensive.

Cons:

  • For me it means I take way longer to read a book – the audiobook is approximately 10 hours long but I would be able to read the book much quicker than that.
  • It means you can’t listen to music whilst reading (obviously!) and I quite enjoy listening to music whilst I read so this is a little off putting. I find myself having little breaks from listening to the audio book just to listen to some music.
  • Once you start paying for Audible it is relatively expensive – £7.99 a month so I guess it depends what books you’ll be listening to, as you can buy some books in paperback or on a Kindle for only a couple of quid.

In conclusion I’d 100% recommend everyone who has an Amazon account to get their free trial – after all it’s a free book! But for me, I don’t think Audible is worth it so after I finish my audiobook I will be cancelling my subscription so I don’t ever have to pay. That’s not to say I think Audible is terrible but just don’t think it’s for me.

Have you ever tried Audible? What do you think?

 

Free YA Books on Amazon Kindle

Recently there has been a lot of talk about in the book blogging community about pirating books and some people might do it as they feel it is the only way for them to get any books, however there are other choices! I’ve created a list of a few of the best books I’ve on Amazon which are completely free! All you need is a kindle or a kindle app which can easily be downloaded on any smartphone or tablet.

I think all these books are written by indie or self published authors, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t give them a chance! It has been a while since I’ve read most of these books but I do remember enjoying them all!

So if you’re book budget is blown or you don’t really have a book budget, how about picking up one of these five great yet free books?

Prince of Wolves by Quinn Loftis 

Both my Mum and I absolutely adore this book and its subsequent series! As you can probably tell by the title it is about werewolves but these werewolves aren’t like all the others out there in YA. First of they’re Romanian (who doesn’t love a foreign accent?) and the main characters are so much fun! They’re a trio of teenage girls who are absolutely hilarious and compliment each other perfectly. I 100% recommend you pick this one up!

UnEnchanted

This one is all about fairy tales but with a modern twist – Mina is cursed and must complete the endings to all the fairyvtales we all know and love. It’s certainly a really interesting idea and a great way of being inspired by fairy tales.

Raven

Raven is a little cliché but that doesn’t mean it’s not an enjoyable read. It’s about a girl who finds out her whole life has been a lie and she has special abilities but she moves to Canada which is a beautiful place.

Clockwise

Clockwise involves time travel! I absolutely love books with time travel but I just don’t feel like there are enough of them out there! It also involves some cute romance, which is always nice.

The Fallen Star

This is a paranormal novel but it’s not cliché and includes some super interesting paranormal elements.  I felt like the plot was pretty good and involved lots of twists and turns which is something I enjoy in a book!

My final point is a bit of a disclaimer – these books are completely free and that does sometimes have consequences. In some of these books the editing isn’t the best and I have spotted grammatical errors in the best, but in general they’re good, quick and enjoyable so I would recommend you check them out!