Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Love, Rosie - Cecelia Ahern | book review

Love, Rosie - Cecelia Ahern book cover

Title: Love, Rosie (Previously published as Where Rainbows End)
Author: Cecilia Ahern
Genre: Romance

Description on GoodreadsRosie and Alex are destined for one another, and everyone seems to know it but them. Best friends since childhood, their relationship gets closer by the day, until Alex gets the news that his family is leaving Dublin and moving to Boston. At 17, Rosie and Alex have just started to see each other in a more romantic light. Devastated, the two make plans for Rosie to apply to colleges in the U.S. 

She gets into Boston University, Alex gets into Harvard, and everything is falling into place, when on the eve of her departure, Rosie gets news that will change their lives forever: She's pregnant by a boy she'd gone out with while on the rebound from Alex. 

Her dreams for college, Alex, and a glamorous career dashed, Rosie stays in Dublin to become a single mother, while Alex pursues a medical career and a new love in Boston. But destiny is a funny thing, and in this novel, structured as a series of clever e-mails, letters, notes, and a trail of missed opportunities, Alex and Rosie find out that fate isn't done with them yet.

Love, Rosie comes out in UK cinemas today so it seems like the perfect time to tell you about the book it's based on. 

I picked this up after seeing the film posters everywhere in Dublin. When I discovered that the book is set in Dublin and that the writer was Irish, I knew it was meant to be. 

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Barry M Gelly autumn in Chilli and Mustard | review

It's been a fair few months since I bought nail polish and to be honest it's not like I need any more but I love autumn colours. 

I saw a swatch of all of Barry M's autumn shades on Lucy's Stash and loved the look of Chilli and Mustard. Not just because they're autumnal but also, Gryffindor colours. 

Saturday, 18 October 2014

6 things that made me happy this week

Things That Made Me Happy This Week October 18th

Last Saturday I forgot to do this, so this post will actually be about things that have made me happy over the past two weeks! 

Dublin; Last week Tom and I went to Dublin for a few days. It was so nice to have an actual holiday and Tom definitely deserves one as he's working ridiculous hours at the moment. Dublin is a beautiful city that I instantly felt at home in. We had so much fun and I'd love to go back. 

Bewley's coffee; I was never one of those people who really cared for a particular brand of coffee. As far as I'm concerned, if it's coffee I'll drink it. There is now a special place in my heart, and mouth, for Bewley's coffee now. I might have to move to Dublin just so I can get it easily. 

Books; I love the feeling you get when you read a really good book and it puts you in a good mood, don't you? Last week I ploughed through Love, Rosie by Cecelia Ahern. It was such a good book, I felt all fuzzy after putting it down. Keep an eye out for a review over the next week or two. 

Christmas shopping; That's right, I've started my Christmas shopping. I am always organised when it comes to Christmas shopping and I aim to have it done by the end of December, I can't be doing with going to shopping centres in December or wondering whether or not something will arrive in time. 
I get really excited about giving people gifts so the downside to starting your shopping so early is that you have to wait ages to give them their presents. 

Feeling inspired; Earlier this week I gave myself a kick up the ass and set a goal to finish my sports journalism course by the end of the year so I can start the NCTJ next year. I've also started to learn shorthand now since it's so time intensive it's worth starting ahead. 

My Nan's birthday + Miranda Hart; This Wednesday was my Nan's birthday. For her birthday we got her to see Miranda Hart in Birmingham on Friday. We all thoroughly enjoyed it, especially my Nan. I saw on Twitter earlier this week that Miranda said it might be her last stand up tour, which is a shame because she is brilliant, so I'm glad we got to see her. 

What made you happy this week? 

Friday, 17 October 2014

Eylure Brow Shapers | review

My Mum recommended Eylure's Brow Shapers to me a few of weeks ago and they are so useful and brilliant. (Is it bad when your Mum hints that you need to sort 'dem brows out?) 

I hate getting my eyebrows sorted and I always forget about it so the idea of being able to shape them and tidy them up at home was music to my ears.

These brow shapers are idiot proof; I was really worried I would muck it up but I think you'd have to try hard to get it wrong. 

You get three sheets in each packet which in total gives you 12 applications.  

At the bottom of the sheet are rectangular stickers which are for the old monobrow. Then you have a shaped piece for the tops of your eyebrows and another one for the bottom of your eyebrows. 

If you put it in the wrong place, pull in the direction of hair growth and it won't remove any hair, so you can fiddle around until it's in the right place. 

Once they're in place, pull against the direction of hair growth (there's a diagram on the packet if you get confused) et voila, tidier brows. 

I find the top piece and the rectangular pieces to be pain free but the one for the bottom of your eyebrows I found to be quite painful and I'm too wuss to pull it. 

Your skin is quite thin and sensitive around your eyes and I hate having that part waxed so I find it easier to pluck the bottom part of my eyebrows. It takes longer but I find it to be less painful. 

In short: A brilliant product which makes tidying up your brows at home quick and easy. 

Are they cruelty free? After doing a bit of research I believe that Eylure are cruelty free. 

Price: £2.69 at Superdrug

Would I recommend / repurchase? Absolutely to both.

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Four: A Divergent Story Collection - Veronica Roth | Review

Four: a Divergent collection book cover - Veronica Roth

Title: Four: A Divergent Story Collection
Author: Veronica Roth 
Categories: Young adult, dystopian, science fiction, novella
Pages: 285
Publisher: Harper Collins

Description from GoodreadsTwo years before Beatrice Prior made her choice, the sixteen-year-old son of Abnegation’s faction leader did the same. Tobias’s transfer to Dauntless is a chance to begin again. Here, he will not be called the name his parents gave him. Here, he will not let fear turn him into a cowering child.

Newly christened “Four,” he discovers during initiation that he will succeed in Dauntless. Initiation is only the beginning, though; Four must claim his place in the Dauntless hierarchy. His decisions will affect future initiates as well as uncover secrets that could threaten his own future—and the future of the entire faction system.

Two years later, Four is poised to take action, but the course is still unclear. The first new initiate who jumps into the net might change all that. With her, the way to righting their world might become clear. With her, it might become possible to be Tobias once again.

By now you probably know that I'm a big fan of the Divergent series so as soon as I heard Veronica Roth was releasing a book of novellas told by Four, I had to read it. 

Four is a collection of four novellas; The Transfer, The Initiate, The Son and The Traitor, which are told from the perspective of Four. The first three look at his life before he met Tris and the final story, The Traitor, takes place after meeting Tris. 

I found the first three the most interesting because we get to find out more about Four and his life before Divergent begins. There was a bit of overlap in The Traitor with Divergent, but it wasn't focused on Tris and wasn't a complete repeat of what we read in the book.  

These four novellas, especially the first three, were easily the best novellas I've ever read. They didn't add anything revolutionary to the series but there were some things Four does in those novellas that isn't mentioned in the series so it was nice to read those parts. 

At the end there are three very short pieces, only a few pages long, called; First Jumper - Tris!, Careful Tris and You Look Good Tris, which are scenes from Divergent told from the perspective of Four. 

Four embellishes upon small things we knew about from Divergent and it helps us to understand his motives a little better. 

As you might expect with the novella starting off when Four has to make his own choice and progressing to the point where he meets Tris, we see a lot of character development. This isn't something I've seen in novellas before, so it gets a massive thumbs up from me for that.

If you've read Divergent this collection will not spoil the rest of the series for you. 

I read some comments on Goodreads where some people asked why did Roth write these? The series has finished, so why bother? Those are fair points, which Roth pretty much addresses at the beginning of the book. 

At the beginning of this book she says that she originally tried to tell the story from the point of view of Four but it didn't work, so I personally found it really interesting to read how the story may have turned out. 

I'm glad that we read the series from the point of view of Tris because I think it works much better, but it was fun to read what could have been. 

In short: A must-have collection of shorts told by Four for fans of the Divergent series. 

Price: £5.00 hardcover on Amazon UK // £4.75 Kindle UK

Would I recommend it: If you're a big fan of the Divergent series, this collection of novellas will be right up your street. 

Do you like the Divergent series? 

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Bewley's coffee shop

It took me a while to write some kind of blog post about Bewley's coffee shop that made sense because I love it so, so much. 

Nevermind Starbucks or Costa Coffee, Bewley's is where it's at. 

Before we went away my Mum and Nan raved about a coffee shop called Bewley's on Grafton Street so we decided we had to check it out. 

Our motives were mostly to send them pictures and make them feel bad (so kind) but I fell in love and now I miss it! 

The shop was a bit of a TARDIS. From the outside it seemed quite small but when we got inside there were about four floors and the bottom level just seems to keep going back for miles. 

When we did finally get to the back, we discovered huge beautiful stained glass windows. I did consider moving the plant for a better photo, but I wasn't sure how much the family sat next to us would appreciate me rearranging the cafe while they ate.  

Tom and I went to Bewley's three times and enjoyed it every time. After much testing, I decided that my favourite things on their menu were their lattes and their drool-worthy berry scones. 

No other scone will ever be good enough for me now. They were fluffy and juicy and I'm going to have to stop talking about them before I drool all over my trusty laptop. 

To me, this place was a perfect example of a place to sit down and watch the world go by, while stuffing your face with cake. Always eat cake when watching the world go by, it's the rules. 

As well as being a ridiculously delicious coffee shop, Bewley's have their own brand of coffee which you can buy to take away. We decided that after taunting my Mum and Nan, we should take them some coffee back. 

That created another problem though. 

  • I can't stop drinking this stuff
  • My Nan keeps offering it to guests (no, they can have the Nescafe)
  • My Mum and my Nan remembered how good it was. 
Unsurprisingly, we're fast running out of this delicious stuff and you can't get Bewley's coffee easily in England. 

You can order it off the internet but what if I wake up on a Sunday with hankering for Bewley's? I've decided the only solution is that we move to Dublin. I can deal with that. 

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