Posted in Book reviews, Lifestyle

Where She Went

While I was away, I got another book fully read and am so proud of myself for getting through two books this month! I read If I Stay back before the film appeared in the cinema back in 2014. One day I was walking through Waterstones with a friend when I spotted the sequel lying on a desk. A phone call home, and a few months later, there Where She Went was sitting on my bookshelf waiting for me. So it’s actually quite ridiculous that we’re now in 2017 and I’m finally done reading it.

 

Written by Gayle Forman, Where She Went follows Adam over the course of 48 hours as he struggles to cope with certain aspects of his past when he suddenly bumps into an old friend and has the opportunity to talk about the history between them and more.

So, as I mentioned before, it is a sequel, so look away now if you haven’t read If I Stay or seen the film. And if you haven’t, then I strongly recommend that you go do that now because both book and film had me sobbing throughout. Shall we look at the blurb of Where She Went?

It’s been three years since Mia walked out of Adam’s life. And three years he’s spent wondering why.

When their paths cross again in New York City, Adam and Mia are brought are brought back together for one life-changing night.

Adam finally has the opportunity to ask Mia the questions that have been haunting him. But will a few hours in this magical city be enough to lay their past to rest, for good – or can you really have a second chance at first love?

 

I personally loved reading this book. There are frequent flashbacks even before Adam meets Mia again, but they’re clear that they’re flashbacks. I loved the way it was written, and some of the chapters started with the lyrics to the songs Adam has written for his band, Shooting Star. This kept me interested and I loved the fact that the author had taken the time to think out the lines that Adam has apparently written during his heartbreak. What made this even more real was the playlist of songs she suggests to go alongside Adam and Mia’s journey through New York. I’ve never seen an author do this before but the idea of it was great, and if I’d known it was there then I would’ve definitely listened to it throughout the book.

 

One complaint of mine about the story, and complaint is probably too strong a word, is that the ending is a little too idealistic for me. You know those books where you get an ending you want or expect, but you know in real life it wouldn’t go that way? That’s how I felt when I finished reading it. But I still loved it. And for this reason, and this reason alone, I would have to give Where She Went 4 out of 5.

 

I don’t think you would need to read If I Stay before reading Where She Went, as the background is explained in the latter, however I would honestly recommend it as both of these books are incredibly well written and super easy to lose yourself in.

 

Let me know if you’ve read either of them, or if you’re going to! Or even let me know if you’ve got a book recommendation for me! I’m loving getting back into read and writing these reviews for you all.

 

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Posted in Book reviews

The Twelfth Day of July

Another book review! Did I mention that I’m on GoodReads by the way? Always looking for a friend – lifewithktkinnes as per usual.
As the title of this post suggests I was reading The Twelfth Day Of July by Joan Lingard. Mary actually recommended this to me and I’m glad she did.

Sadie is Protestant, Kevin is Catholic – and on the tense streets of Belfast their lives collide. It starts with a dare – kids fooling around – but soon becomes something dangerous. Getting to know Sadie Jackson will change Kevin’s life forever. But will the world change around them too?

The first page of this book had me laughing. It’s awful to say it but I can think back to people at school who must’ve been taught the exact same things: the good man’s King Billy and the bad man’s the Pope. Then again, I also know people who had it drilled into them the opposite way around. From this point of view, I was looking forward to reading the representations of each side of the invisible barricade that still lingers around some parts of Northern Ireland.
This was such an easy book to read, to the point I was half way through it in just an hour of reading. And I loved every minute of it! It wasn’t at all biased one way or another, the characters were easy to like, and the names were easy to pronounce when reading. Another pet hate of mine is the use of Gaelic names that I then need to google the pronunciation of, and it’s actually quite a common thing in books that try to show the difference between the Catholic and Protestant characters. So yes, major brownie points for that!
At one stage in the book, I did have to stop and think. I could imagine the location perfectly – Sadie’s street across the main road from Kevin’s, close enough to the city centre that she could walk in and out again relatively quickly, but also close enough that their Orange March was to the “field” at Finaghy. Anyone who knows Belfast, I was picturing them being just around Tate’s Avenue or The Falls. Then all of a sudden they were living close enough to Belfast Lough that they could hear a ship’s siren during the night? That did throw me a little! It wasn’t helped when, a few chapters later, its suggested that Kevin and his friends walk to the zoo. To be honest, I’d need a map of Belfast in front of me to figure all this out! But anyway, that’s not important in a book review sorry!

 

The story was nice and simple. Sadie’s from a Protestant background, Kevin from a Catholic one. They aren’t allowed to mix, mainly due to the tension between the two communities. Kevin decides to do something stupid (which is how the two meet) and so Sadie retaliates, and this is basically how to story progresses; tit for tat, them trying to get one up on each other, however as their messing around increases, so do the repercussions of each action, until an unexpected ending!

 

 

I simply adored reading this book and honestly didn’t want to stop reading it. I’m already looking for the next one in the series! Definitely go check it out if you can!

 

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Posted in Blogmas, Book reviews, Christmas, life

My Reads of 2016

Well, as the year comes to an end (and before I start to consider my New Years Resolutions) I thought I’d share with you the list of books I’ve read this year, all in the one place with their review where appropriate.

  • Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J. K. Rowling
  • The Freedom Writers’ Diary (review found here)
  • Carol by Patricia Highsmith (review found here)
  • Room by Emma Donoghue (review found here)
  • The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern (review found here)
  • The Housewife Assassin’s Vacation to Die For by Josie Brown
  • The Housewife Assassin’s Recipes for Disaster by Josie Brown
  • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
  • The Dog Who Dared To Dream by Sun-Mi Hwang (review coming in the new year)
  • Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them (Original Screenplay) by J. K. Rowling

Now I’ve to try and plan my books for the new year. Did you read anything you would recommend? Or did you read any of those books above – if so, what did you think of them?
I can’t wait to see what books 2017 will bring into my life!

 
Ktkinnes xx

Posted in Blogmas, Book reviews, Christmas, Lifestyle

Reading At Christmas

Well, this weekend is definitely a busy one! And there’s only a week left until the Christmas Eve craziness! At this stage, today’s song is one of the few things lifting my head from the chaos of getting ready for the big day.

 

 

Today, I wanted to share my favourite Christmas reads with you. No matter how old I am, I love these stories and often read them in the early hours of Christmas Day when I can’t sleep because yes, I am a big child who still finds it hard to sleep before Christmas.

 

  1. How The Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr Seuss.
    Who couldn’t love this book?? Not only do I love the book, but I recently watched the film for the first time ever and can’t wait to join in when Cesca hosts the GRLPOWR movie night for it this coming Wednesday!
  2. A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens.
    Another classic tale that has had so many movie adaptations that I’ve lost count! It gets me thinking about Christmases past, present and future every year. Hopefully I’ll never be like Scrooge!
  3. The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg.
    Actually, it was only when the film first came out that I realised this was a book first. Either way, the story of the little boy who struggles to believe in Santa is so reminiscent of growing up. Anyone else wish they still believed?
  4. The Snowman by Raymond Briggs.
    Just because there are no words doesย notย mean this isn’t a fantastic book that takes me back to my childhood any time I flick through the pages!
  5. The Night Before Christmas by Clement Clarke Moore.
    Yes, okay, technically this isn’t a story, it’s a poem, but then again who can have a Christmas without it? Can you?

 

What Christmas books do you simply have to read?

 

Ktkinnes xx

8 more sleeps!

Posted in Book reviews, Lifestyle

22 Books to Read Before I’m 22

Hello again! I’m trying to get back to blogging and, to do so, I wanted to post something I would enjoy writing. I will try to get back to the blogging challenge, I promise I will try. But for now, here are the 22 books I hope to read before my 22nd birthday – only 354 days to go!

 

  1. Les Miserables by
  2. The Thirty-Nine Steps by Richard Hannay
  3. The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini
  4. According to Yes – Dawn French
  5. The Colour Purple
  6. The Great Gatsby
  7. Life After Life – Kate Atkinson
  8. The Danish Girl
  9. The Casual Vacancy
  10. Before I Go To Sleep
  11. The Perks of Being a Wallflower
  12. A Brief History of Time
  13. Jane Eyre
  14. The Book Thief
  15. Animal Farm
  16. Peter Pan
  17. The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas
  18. Bridge to Teribithia
  19. Angela’s Ashes
  20. Poirot’s Last Case
  21. Me Before You
  22. The Well of Loneliness

 

What would you out on your list?

 

Ktkinnes xx

Posted in Book reviews

100 Books Before You Die

Well, with yesterday being National Book Lovers Day, I decided to browse online shops for some new books for my shelf/drawer. I tend to always start my researching what’s popular at the minute and so an article on amazon.co.uk caught my attention. 100 Books to Read in a Lifetime sounded interesting, and so I decided to have a look and see how many of them I had read. How many have you read?

Continue reading “100 Books Before You Die”

Posted in Book reviews, Lifestyle

Summer 2016 Reading List

East Strand, Portrush, Northern Ireland. Taken on 13th July 2016. A summery day!

Hello once again! Twice in one day, I’m spoiling you today ๐Ÿ˜ 

Earlier I mentioned my reading list. Since I actually managed to read the majority of my list last year, if not all of it, I thought I would share with you this year’s list to have read before I (hopefully) return to university in September. I’ve no idea what order they’ll be read in but don’t worry, all reviews will be posted asap after I’ve finished each book!

  1. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. This is part of #GGbookclub ‘s book club that I decided to join after suggesting starting a book club. If anyone’s interested in joining, find them on Twitter at @theggbookclub !
  2. What Dreams Are Made Of by Sheila O’Flanagan.
  3. I’ll Run To You by Nikki Vale.
  4. Almost Dead by T. R. Ragan
  5. The Housewife Assassin’s Vacation To Die For by Josie Brown. I started this series last summer and fell in love so I have this and then book 6 to read!
  6. The Housewife Assassin’s Recipes for Disaster by Josie Brown.

Six books. That should be easy enough to complete, shouldn’t it? I normally would aim for more but we’ll see how this list goes.
Enjoy your evening or have a good night’s sleep! Feel free to join me in reading these and we can have a good discussion about them when we’re both done.
Ktkinnes xx

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Posted in Lifestyle

Accidental rambling

So I’m currently attempting to revise but my mind isn’t focusing at all as sitting behind me is a nearly packed suitcase! Ibiza isn’t far away and I’m desperate to get away now. 

I seriously cannot settle down to do any work and I’m beginning to worry. How am I meant to pass these resits if I can’t focus for more than a couple of hours at a time during the day? I mean, I could stay awake at night but that makes the day time work ethic even worse. Any suggestions?
Today’s thought for the day is 

Judge a man by his questions, not by his answers.   

โ€“ Voltaire          

So what does that mean for us? To me, especially today, it implies that an intelligent person doesn’t boast of his intellect through his answers, rather he asks the right questions at the right times. 

This week has been an interesting political development, probably one of the bigger ones of my lifetime. As we all know, the U.K. voted to leave the EU at the end of June. As a result, David Cameron resigned as prime minister and we now have Theresa May. Now, truth be told, I know very little about her, her policies or her intentions for the country. However, I am slightly wary of her for the simple reason I was unaware of her before this parliamentary shuffle. Is that wrong of me to say, especially when women should be rejoicing at this supposed win for feminists around the globe? I don’t know. All I do know is that it’s time I took an interest in the politics of the mainland and left behind the politics of Northern Ireland.
Whoops, I somehow got off topic. I actually came on here to talk about my summer reading list and how I’ve just downloaded Pokemon go! But I’ll save that for later. So call back tonight for this summer’s reading list and any other ramblings I may have!
Ktkinnes xx

Posted in Lifestyle

3 more sleeps…

Good evening! ๐Ÿ™‚ that was a good episode of Carmilla, still 100% recommend to anyone who’s interested in trying something new. I won’t say much in case I spoil anything for you all but I will simply say “gay and broody”. Gotta love Natasha’s way of portraying her character.

So I promised you all a list of my books:

  1. Carmilla – obvious reasons but possibly to anyone who hasn’t read back, the YouTube series Carmilla is loosely based on a novella by Sheridan Le Fanu. It was written before Dracula and is not only based on a female majority but also focuses on a lesbian relationship. I’m already a quarter through and loving it!
  2. Desperately Ever After by Laura Kenyon
  3. The Diary of an Expectant Father by Pete Sortwell and Graham Peterson
  4. The Girl In Between by Laekan Zea Kemp
  5. Grey by E L James
  6. The Housewife Assassin’s Handbook by Josie Brown
  7. Mom Con by Karl Fields

They can all be found on Amazon Kindle and that’s how I plan on reading them. I used to fuss and say “I will never use a Kindle, I enjoy a physical book too much” however when I got my Kindle Fire for Christmas I soon fell in love. It’s so easy to carry around with me and it’s already packed for Ibiza. Don’t get me wrong, I still love physical books and buy them whenever I get the chance! However if it saves on my weight allowance, who am I to complain?

Somewhere in the middle of all this and my current TV addiction,  I also have resits to revise for… Don’t know when that’s going to happen… Slightly concerned about that… But I’ll figure it out, I always do. Apparently the hotel has been redecorated and now has free wifi in all the bedrooms so at least I’ll be able to download papers and questions. 

I’m currently shattered but don’t want to sleep yet because I’ve to complete an online check in at 6am however it makes more sense to sleep now and do it as soon as I wake up… Any advice?

Hopefully hear from a few of you sometime over the next few days! Got a lot left to do and a day of work as well. But for now, I shall retire to watch episode 7 of 24. Feel free to chat to me!

Thanks for reading ๐Ÿ˜Š

Ktkinnes xx