Visiting Walker Books: My First Exclusive Book Blogging Event! *Cue Squealing*

Walker YA Wonderland Book Blogging Event

I’d like to thank my mum, my dad, my boyfriend, the book community, and that guy I saw in Tesco’s that one time who gave up the last reduced pastry…

Haha no. But seriously, when I saw an invitation come into my inbox for Walker’s YA Wonderland, a festive evening of books, bubble, and bites to showcase their upcoming titles for 2019 presented by some of the authors themselves, it was like a golden ray of sunshine appeared and angels started singing.

I RSVP’d within about a minute of the invitation coming through without checking any of the details because come hell or high water, I WAS GETTING THERE.

This is, without a doubt, one of the best blogging moments I’ve had since I started this thing. I’ve seen plenty of bloggers invited to publisher events over the years, but I never thought I would be one of them and I feel so incredibly privileged to have been offered the opportunity. 

So, here’s you’re sneak peek into Walker Books and their upcoming releases (because I couldn’t go to a book event without sharing it with you guys, could I?!?) 😀

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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!!! Continue reading

#WhenImNotReadingBooks: A Day of Culture in London

A Day of Culture in London

Hello readers!

In case you can’t tell by the title, I have been off adventuring again.
Despite having spent three years going to a London University, I still find that there is SO MUCH still to discover! Because of this, every time I go to meet my friend who lives in London, she always tries to introduce me to a different area of the city, or we look up any current events that are on and check them out! Continue reading

ARC Mini Reviews: Contemporary Fiction

Thank you to the publishers Walker Books and Alma Books who have been kind enough to provide me with wonderful review copies lately. I enjoyed each and every one of these!

Truth or Dare

 

BLURB: How far is too far when it comes to the people you love? 
Claire Casey hates being the centre of attention. But if it means getting Sef Malik to notice her, it’s a risk she’s happy to take.
Sef is prepared to do anything to help his recently disabled brother. But this means putting Claire’s love – and life – on the line. Because when you’re willing to risk everything, what is there left to lose?

What I liked

Non Pratt’s latest novel Truth or Dare is right on trend. It’s sharp and current with its portrayal of social media, and it ticks a lot of diversity boxes including LGBT, Neurodisability and subtle nudges and observations of passive racism. (Not that these things should be seen as tick boxes because I am looking forward to the day where we don’t have to point them out like a rarity!) Continue reading

I Heart London by Lindsey Kelk Review 1/5

Overall Impression: Selfishness runs riot in this lackluster installment of one of my favourite series.I Heart London by Lindsey Kelk

‘Ohh dear’ is pretty much the phrase I would use to sum up this book, perhaps with an ‘exasperated’ or ‘deflated’ on the side. Seriously, Lindsey Kelk, what the heck happened with this book? Over the past year the I Heart series (of which I Heart London is the 5th book) has become my go-to for when I’m in the mood for something lightweight, fun and romantic that is farfetched but in the best possible way.
Unfortunately, this installment didn’t deliver on any of the above, and instead left me fuming and disappointed. In other words: I has a sad. And an angry. (This will probably be more of a rant than a review.)

Home is where the heart is. Right?
Angela Clark has fallen in love with New York – and it’s starting to love her back. But when she’s summoned home to England, she’s at risk of losing her shiny life to rain, warm beer and bad memories.
Talk about stepping back in time.
There’s Mark, the ex-boyfriend – who she ran to New York to get away from.
There’s Louisa, her best friend, with her terrifying new baby.
And there’s her mum, still talking to her as though she’s fifteen.
Now there’s a wedding in the offering – and everyone remembers how well Angela behaved at the last one…
Can the arrival of boyfriend Alex and new best friend Jenny save her from a re-run of her old self?
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On Meeting Trudi Canavan

It was an odd sequence of events that led to me meeting one of my all time favourite rockstar authors. For starters, the wonderful Cindy ignited a spark of curiosity in me after relaying some of her author signing experiences. Secondly, an advert for Trudi Canavan’s new Facebook page just happened to pop up as a suggestion on my sidebar. I don’t tend to spend a lot of time on Facebook and rarely if ever like pages, yet for a reason that still eludes me, I clicked the link to discover a status stating Trudi was going to be in London for a signing! Thirdly, I had recently vowed to spend more time outside of my work filled Hobbit hole in order to investigate more of London. I don’t believe in fate, but it did almost seem as if the universe aligned. 🙂 After finding out the information I proceeded to text one of my best budds, an enthusiastic fangirl and native Londoner (and therefore my first port of call for all things London) to find out if she knew the area. Though she had no clue who Trudi Canavan was, she squealed along with me as if it was the best discovery in the world and offered to go with me to my first ever book signing, for which I will be eternally grateful, I would have been too scared to go on my own! Continue reading

A Street Cat Named Bob by James Bowen Review 4/5

Overall Impression: An endearing and uplifting tale about two underdogs surviving on London’s streets.
A Street Cat Named Bob by James Bowen

This is my third non-fiction book this year, I better be careful, I might hurt myself! I never thought I would delve into the world of non-fiction, it always fit snugly under the boring category in my mind. If someone had told me a year ago I would be reading some AND enjoying it I would have laughed. How quickly things change.
I originally bought the autobiography A Street Cat Named Bob for a family member who loved her furry friends. I had seen James Bowen being interviewed on the BBC news and the story caught my attention. After all, I am a soppy cat lover. After the family member had read it she leant it back to me, knowing all too well my love of books and I’m glad she did, because Bowen’s story was well worth reading!

When James Bowen found an injured, ginger street cat curled up in the hallway of his sheltered accommodation, he had no idea how much his life was about to change. James was living hand to mouth on the streets of London and the last thing he needed was a pet.
Yet James couldn’t resist helping the strikingly intelligent tom cat, whom he quickly christened Bob. He slowly nursed Bob back to health and then sent the cat on his way, imagining he would never see him again. But Bob had other ideas.
Soon the two were inseparable and their diverse, comic and occasionally dangerous adventures would transform both their lives, slowly healing the scars of each other’s troubled pasts.

A Street Cat Named Bob is written by James Bowen, a failed musician turned busker in London who was approached by a journalist. For obvious reason this means that it is not the finest prose you will encounter, but you know what? I liked that about it. This book was rough around the edges, a lot like James and Bob.  Continue reading