If We Were Having Coffee… // Book Updates, Adventures and London Excursions

If-we-were-having-coffee.pngIf we were having coffee is a blogging community idea, where bloggers publish posts about what they’d like to say to their readers if they were sitting down together having a casual cup of coffee. I understand that the original idea was created by Ashley and I found it through Jamie’s blog.

In my mind, we’re sitting in a small cafe, halfway down a busy high street. It’s kitted out like an old 50s diner, black and white flooring, pink neon signs, and a popcorn machine sits next to an old jukebox. Twisting the Night Away by Sam Cook is playing enthusiastically in the background as I order a coffee and a pink milkshake.  What are you waiting for? Make yourself comfortable, grab a beverage, and let’s chat!

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I’d tell you that I just got over a horrendous cold, and 3 days later I’ve only gone and gotten another one! I’ve had an extremely busy couple of months and I think it’s my bodies way of saying “hey wait a minute, chill!!” (Subsequently knocking me out for the count.) I also feel like WHO IS THIS PERSON?! I’ve never had so much booked in my diary EVER. Suddenly I’m hopping all over the place and there’s not enough time in the day!!!

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I’d tell you that I’ve just finished reading 11.22.63 by Stephen King. It’s about a man who travels to 50s America after discovering a fissure in time at the back of a greasy burger joint. His aim? Prevent JF Kennedy’s assassination and few other side missions along the way. This book has been on my shelf for 7 YEARS. I mean, that’s just embarrassing, right? I have to say I really enjoyed it and it’s wet my appetite for more Stephen King! The only other King novels I’ve read are Carrie and IT – I’m not big on the horror genre so it was cool that this novel has a whole different tone! Readers – What book have you just finished? And which Stephen King book would you recommend I try next?

reading on a train
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I’d tell you I now have a bookstagram account on Instagram! I’ve always been kind of intimidated by bookstagrammers because their pictures are so gorgeous and mine couldn’t possibly stack up. But eventually, I was drawn in and realised how happy looking at all the books porn made me so I started my own. You can now find me here! Let me know your Instagram handles and I’ll check yours out too!

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I’d tell you that despite being so busy, I’ve been doing a really good job at buckling down and reading some of my backlist books (like 11.22.63 above, and the Vampire Academy series which has been on my shelves for about 10 years). I AM SO PROUD OF MYSELF GUYS. Not only have I been chipping away at those books but I’ve been very strict about buying new ones. That is, until this week where I treated myself for doing so well. I know, I know, there’s a flaw in that logic somewhere, isn’t there? What new books have you bought recently? Which of these should I read first?

Book Haul 2018

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I’d tell you that I went to see Michael McIntyre’s World Tour, and it was SO GOOD. I’d never seen a comedian live before but McIntyre is the one person that always has me in stitches on TV, from his observational humor to his silly reenactments of everyday situations. I was nervous by needn’t of worried, I was practically wetting myself two minutes in, and didn’t stop laughing until he walked off the stage!  Have you ever seen a comedian live?

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IMG_0346 (2).jpgI’d tell you that I went to see the theatre shows The Cursed Child parts 1 and 2  in London. You may be asking as a Potterhead, why I waited so long to see it. Well, I’ve been burned with follow-ups to beloved series before – I find they’re normally unsatisfying in a number of ways, especially if the original story was summed up in a way you’re content with. For this reason, despite booking the tickets a year in advance I made sure to keep my expectations really low so that I couldn’t be disappointed.

After the end of part 1, I wasn’t too sure what I thought, but by the end of part 2 I was totally into it and so pleased I went! The story was good, the acting was great and I developed an attachment to all the new characters, but what really blew me away was the inventiveness of the sets, the lighting tricks, how well the music was used and how magic was incorporated. It kind of blew me away! Have you seen the Cursed Child? Did it live up to your expectations?

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I’d tell you that the day after the Cursed Child, I saw Ed Sheeran in concert! It had been years since I’d been to a gig because, to be honest, there hadn’t really been anyone I liked enough to pay to see. After seeing Ed at Glastonbury on the TV last year I was impressed by his stage presence and had always liked his music, so I sat refreshing the tickets page until I got through to the booking website.

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A year later and I found myself drinking wine from a plastic cup in the biggest stadium I had ever visited. We got there early as we were in the standing section (the standing section is the only way to go in my opinion, you have to be in the thick of it and get as close as possible!)

Supporting acts were Jamie Lawson and Anne Marie (I am now totally obsessed with Anne Marie’s music!). Ed was just as brilliant as I hoped. I yelled all his lyrics at the top of my lungs until my throat was sore and danced around like a loon!
Do you like Ed Sheeran? Who did you last see in concert?

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I’d tell you that I also got tickets to see A Monster Calls the theatre show in London quite last minute. I went with my friend who STILL HASN’T READ THE BOOK DESPITE MY REPEATED NAGGING *SIGH*. It’s been a couple of weeks now, and honestly? I’m still not quite sure what I thought of it. It wasn’t at all what I was expecting and it was much more arty than anything else I’ve seen at the theatre. They made the yew tree monster out of thick ropes, and the ropes were also used throughout the show in other ways as well. All the actors wore super casual clothing and sat in rows at both sides of the stage when they weren’t playing a main role, and reflected back Connor the protagonist’s emotions. It was very clever but didn’t really portray the overall feel of the book for me, or capture the magic of it. Even so,  I’m glad I went to see it because it was a totally different experience theatre experience! Plus, I also went to this Pizza place (called Crust Bros) just outside Waterloo and it had THE BEST PIZZA. You could pick your base and all your toppings and it tasted so fresh and wholesome! YUM. Definitely worth a repeat visit!
Readers, should I watch the movie adaptation of Monster Calls? I haven’t seen it yet.

CMYLE4831  IMG_0740 (2)

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I’d tell you that my best friend got married two weeks ago. I’ve known her for 13 years so it was super emotional. I was maid of honor so I was in charge or arranging the hen party which was great fun. We did a treetop adventure with zip wires, had a party with silly games, went clubbing and also had a spa day. Everything went smoothly on the day except for one thing. Their wedding reception was outside and it was the first day that we had rain after our long heat wave. Luckily it eased off in the evening and we had a lot of gazeebos! Does anybody else feel kinda freaked out when one of their friends get married or has children? I don’t feel adult enough for this yet! 

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I’d tell you that I’ve just come back from another mini adventure – I went back to Bruges in Belgium for my 3 year anniversary with the boyfriend (Um, 3 years, HOW?!?!) Bruges still remains one of my favourite places on the planet so far, it’s like going back in time with its cobbled streets, chiming belfry and horse and carriage rides. I must have been to Bruges about 6 times now. It’s the perfect mini break and it’s food and drink heaven. We indulged big time with Flemish stew, panini’s, waffles, chocolates and lots of alcohol. We went with another couple and wandering the streets a lot of the pubs have beer tasting platters, where you get several local beers in half pints on a wooden slat. We came across one with 12 different beers which is supposed to be shared between two, but the guys decided to be macho and have one each (most Belgian beers are between 7-10% unlike the British 4-5% – not sure how they were still standing!!) We also finally got to doing the boat ride this time around which was beautiful!

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So, thanks for listening to me rambling over a cup of coffee. As you may be able to tell, life has been very busy! Now it’s your turn. What would you tell me about your life over a nice cup/glass of something? Have you been on any interesting trips? Read any good books? Set the scene for me, what would be the beverage of your choice? What does your cafe look like?

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20 thoughts on “If We Were Having Coffee… // Book Updates, Adventures and London Excursions

  1. And here’s my rambling answer. Three years?? Can we expect wedding bells soon? You will be such a beautiful bride 😁. I’m totally jealous that you went to see Ed Sheeran – he’s one of my absolute favourites!!! And you really need to teach me how to stop buying books LMAO. I am going to need a second house soon 😁. They do give me great comfort though. Every time I walk by one of my many shelves full of books, I smile and sigh in happiness. Oh, what am I reading. I just finished The Saturday Night Ghost Club by fellow Canadian, Craig Davidson. It was wonderful! As for Stephen King, I’m so glad you enjoyed 11/22/63. I thought it was very thought provoking. When I was a kid one of my favourite King books was Salem’s Lot, but it has been years. I really need to read it again and see if I still love it as much. Happy reading Book Buddy!!

    • Hehee, not quite yet I don’t think! We’re both still working a lot out career-wise, so we’re both focussing a lot on that at the moment! Awh, thank you, I must admit wedding dress shopping with my friend was great fun!
      Ed was amaaaazing I would definitely recommend seeing him if you can. I was just so pleased I actually managed to get tickets in the first place! It was so sad because while his tour was ongoing they did a news story about lots of people who had bought invalid tickets and couldn’t get in. :/

      I think every bookworm should have a second house for their books, LOL!! Now we just have to convince both our neighbours to move out!!! xD Oooh, I own Salem’s Lot so I’m glad to hear it was a memorable one for you. I’ve heard that The Stand is good too – I’d like to try that one too!

  2. Hmm, maybe I’d be having a root beer float and I’d talk about how I listened to an amazing audio read of Brian Selznick’s The Invention of Hugo Cabret and when I got home from my 7 hour road trip I immediately checked the novel, which I read before crashing for a nap. I am definitely a Selznick fan now!

  3. I loved this post and the insight into your life- you ARE busy with so many amazing events!! Also I had no idea Stephen King wrote outside of the horror genre lol? How did you like Vampire Academy?? I bought the first book a few years ago but haven’t gotten around to it yet!

    • Glad you enjoyed! Life has been throwing some awesome stuff my way lately for sure, but now I am ready for a POWER NAP.
      King has got a few books outside of the horror genre, and some that are more fantasy/sci-fi, they’re just a little harder to find.
      Hmm.. I’ve been very up and down with the Vampire Academy series, books 1 and 2 were meh, 3 I loved and I thought ‘okay, it’s going to get good’ now, but then 4 and 5 were kinda meh again. I’m hoping book 6 will end on a positive note!

  4. Wow! You have been busy lately. The Ed Sheeran concert sounds fun as well as seeing HP’s Cursed Child play. I’m a big fan of the Vampire Academy novels, hope you’re enjoying them. I am on Instagram as @lifeofafemalebibliophile. Looking forward to following you on insta as well!

  5. Woah! sounds like you’ve been super busy and it all sounds pretty awesome!
    I’m so jealous you went to see Ed Sheeran! I was one of those who sat refreshing the page but didn’t manage to get my hands on tickets, I’ll definitely be trying again next time! Sounds like you had a great night though :). I’ll bet Michael McIntyre was hilarious too, I love his stuff – I always buy the DVDs when they come out but never seen him live!

    In terms of Stephen King, it’s funny because I’ve never read any of his books as I’m not big on horror either! But my boyfriend is really into his stuff and convinced me to watch The Green Mile (which most people don’t even realise is King!) and it’s now one of my favourite films, so I’d definitely recommend maybe giving that a read if you’re looking for something that isn’t horror.

    And I definitely know what you mean about getting around to books you’ve had for ages! I’m going to make next year the year when I try and tackle any old’uns I have. Your bookstagram looks great btw – I had no idea that that was a thing! haha.

    • Awh man, I’m so gutted that you didn’t get tickets!! Although I have absolutely no doubt you will get the chance to see him again when he next tours. I was so sure I wouldn’t be able to get mine. On the day I had two different websites open that were selling the tickets – the main one and also Amazon. The main link went round and round but the Amazon one let me in within about 5 minutes. I don’t think Amazon are even selling gig tickets anymore but I will be ever thankful!

      Ah, it’s interesting you mention The Green Mile. After reading 11.22.63 I looked on the internet for best non-horror Stephen King books. Green Mile came up and until that point, I hadn’t realised it was one of this stories!! Although now I reflect on the movie, I do see a lot of his sense of humor in there. I’d definitely rec 11.22.63 as a good King starter book. I gave it 4 stars, I think you’d enjoy it. 🙂

      Tackling the backlist books is always a nice cleansing feeling. Thanks for checking out the bookstagram and for the compliment, but I am SUPER amateur and my following is tiny! If you have a personal Instagram, you should follow! I miss you music updates now you’re no longer blogging! 🙂

  6. Aww thanks Becky :). I’ve never really had that problem before with tickets selling out in minutes – I think I underestimated exactly what I was going into at the time haha. That was super lucky!

    I’ll have to try that one, my boyf said that there are actually loads of King books that aren’t really ‘horror’ as such. I want to give Carrie and The Dark Tower series a try too. 🙂

    I’m actually really excited to get back into reading, I’ve had a few shiny new books on my radar for ages and just not got round to it, so they should whet my appetite for it. No worries at all, and hey… everyone has to start somewhere. 🙂 I shall give it a follow for sure!

    Aww thank you, that’s really sweet. 🙂 Funny you should say that because I don’t really listen to much music any more, nothing has really grabbed me in quite a long time. But, I’ve spoken to a lot of fellow music lovers and apparently I’m not the only one, so that’s comforting. I’m crossing my fingers that something comes along and reawakens my love for it soon. 🙂

    • Funny that you just replied to this because I thought of you earlier this week because Ed Sheeran has just released some more UK tour dates – don’t know if they’re in your area or not but I will keep my fingers crossed for you!

      I did try Carrie last year and did not like it at all. It’s very short and doesn’t have the complexity of King’s more established works. For that reason, I wouldn’t really recommend it but it’s certainly becoming a modern classic!

      Oooh, that sounds exciting, I love shiny new books. 😀

      It’s funny you mention about listening to music less because I’ve also really lost touch with current music – I have no idea what’s in the charts! Everything started to feel very predictable and same-ey and I just felt really uninspired by it all? We need a new wave! I’ve actually ended up reverting to older music like Sam Cooke and 80s stuff lately, I’ve also really gotten into electroswing. My tastes can be quite random. 😀

  7. Haha, yes that did cross my mind after I posted it :). Aww thank you!

    Ahh I see, I’m sure I’ll be watching the film at some point so I’ll see how I get on with that.

    I totally agree! Music has changed so much and, as you say, everything seems to be very samey and in honesty, a bit boring :(. I love old 80’s music! It never fails to make me smile (and have a little dance in my chair 🙂 ) Never tried Electroswing, I’ll have to have a look into that one and see. I’m the same – I’m sure we’re not the only ones either. 🙂

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