#BookadayUK 5,6,7 & 8

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I am aware that I am 4 days behind… I’m new to this, give me a break.

5. Most delicious novel about food.

I was actually trying to put this one off because I don’t think I’ve ever read a novel that is ABOUT food… I don’t even think I know any novels that are about food that I haven’t read! So I’m going to have to miss this one out. Maybe I’ll try and read a book about food in the future sometime, I don’t know.

6. Book I put down to watch the Wimbledon tennis final.

Truth be told, I didn’t watch the tennis final… sorry. But I can tell you the book I put down in order to watch “The Loony Tunes Show” on boomerang.

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Around The World In 80 Days – Jules Verne.

I bought this book a couple of weeks ago when I was in Cork. We found this book shop that were basically giving away classic titles so I picked up this one along with “Five weeks in a balloon”, also by Jules Verne.

I’m enjoying it quite a lot so far, sometimes I find “old” novels quite hard to get into because of the writing style, but this isn’t so bad. The version I have (Wordsworth Classics) contains notes at the back with a glossary of jargon used in the book which may not be fully understood today (quite often references to the media at the time of writing).

7. Most chocolaty novel.

National Chocolate day…? What?! I didn’t even know that was a thing!
Anyway, there is really only one book I could possibly pick for this one.

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Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl.

I absolutely loved this book when I was younger, and I was also a big fan of the movie too. Myself and my best friend at the time, made up a pretty intense routine to “I’ve got a golden ticket” in my back garden one summer, it involved two slides, a swing, a trampoline and a table.

Obviously the book is quite chocolaty since it is about a chocolate factory. I think my copy even has a chocolaty smudge where I read it whilst eating a Fredo!

8. Favorite ‘Great War’ novel.

This has hands down got to be:

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Private Peaceful – Michael Morpurgo

I mean… I can’t even describe this book, it’s beautiful. From the way it’s written, right down to each character, it’s just… wow.
My year 8 English teacher made us read it in class and I just remember our teacher reading the last chapter to us out loud whilst the whole class just sat there in utter silence. And then when he finished, half of us were openly crying whilst the other half just slumped down onto the table in despair.
As a rule, I don’t generally read books that I know will make me sad or have made me really sad before. For example, I have no intention to read ‘My Sister’s Keeper’ any time soon, nor shall I re-read ‘The Fault in Our Stars’ ever again. This is simply because I like reading to be something I enjoy, not something which makes me want to curl up into a ball for the next week. (Although, I have read a number of very sad books, but that is through sheer luck rather than seeking them out intentionally.) Private Peaceful however, goes against my rule. Despite knowing that when it comes to the end, I will either be fighting back tears or hyperventilating, I will probably continue to keep this book as a favourite and one which I will constantly re-read, for quite some time.

 

 

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#bookadayUK 3. Favourite translated novel – AND – 4. Favourite American Novel

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I was a bit of a kid yesterday and I spent the day at Legoland! This, of course, has nothing to to with my book of the day, but just explains why I’m putting two books in one post today.

3. Favourite translated novel.
I thought about this one for a long time yesterday (whilst queuing for the log flume) and I just could not think of a single book that I’d read that had been translated into English. I wasn’t going to completely ignore it though so this morning I had a look on goodreads, with the intention to pick a translated novel and make a point to read it sometime soon and then blog about it later. But instead, I was quite surprised to find that one of my favourite series was on the list of “top translated novels”

inkheart-bookInk Heart, by Cornelia Funke. I don’t know whether everyone already knew this, but I genuinely had no idea that this book, and it’s sequels were originally written in German.
The reason I like this book (and the rest of the trilogy) is because when I read it for the first time I couldn’t put it down. It was one of those experiences where you basically live and breath the books for about a week, as you power through all three, one after the other, neglecting all other daily duties and necessities such as homework, socialising, eating and sleeping… Wastes valuable reading time.

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So, today is obviously the 4th of July, where every American will be celebrating Independence Day. It seems only fitting that the book today is:

2. Favourite American novel
I’m not sure whether this means a novel set in America or a novel by an American author… So to be on the safe side, I’ll go all American.
61vJG--DyyLThe princess diaries 3 (third time lucky), by Meg Cabot. I know it’s the third book in a ten book series, but this one is literally my favourite of all of them! Firstly, I like the way all of the books are written, in a diary form, you are literally getting one side of the story, so you’re as lost as the character is throughout the whole book. The reason I like this book the most though, is simply because of what happens… Which I’m obviously not going to be writing here!

#bookadayuk – 1. A book that made you laugh out loud. AND – 2.Favorite SF/Fantasy novel

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So, interesting story, literally SECONDS after I posted last nights blog, I saw on twitter that a new list had been released for July… maybe I’m the last person to find this out but I genuinely didn’t know it was a monthly thing.
Anyway, ignoring last nights blunder, I shall continue, first making up for yesterday with:

1. A book that made you laugh out loud.

… This is actually a hard one, all I can think of is books that made me cry… OK I think I’m going to have to go with The Mediator series, by Meg Cabot. I’m not sure if it’s cheating if I name a series, but I can’t say which of the books specifically made me laugh the MOST so I’m just going to have to say all of them. I’m not sure what it is, it’s not MEANT to be a super funny book or anything, I just think it’s the characters mannerisms and attitude towards things. I’m quite an imaginative reader, so I picture the characters saying the things in my head, or even imagine myself saying them. I think that’s what makes it funny… at least that’s what I find funny anyway.

2. Favorite SF/Fantasy novel.

acrosstheuniverseI’ve only really read one Science fiction based novel and that was Across the Universe by Beth Revis. Sometimes, when reading YA fiction, you find that bits of the story seem to be recycled from other books or plots. That’s why I enjoyed this book so much it seemed so original, at least, it was nothing like any book I’d read before anyway. The author had me feeling emotions for the characters from the first page… I may have cried a little, but this only made me want to read it more. I raved about this book for about a month after I read it, but did anyone listen?

Nope.

I’m not going to go into too much detail about the plot, it would defeat the whole point of reading it for yourself but basically:
The book alternates between the POV of the two main characters, Amy and Elder. The story is set on this ship called Godspeed, apparently, earth had the technology to create a huge ship which could be sent into space, to a planet which is 300 years away.
Amy is one of the cryogenically frozen people on the ship, sent to colonize the new planet, but her Cyro chamber is unplugged 50 years before schedule and she nearly dies! (OMG).
Elder is the next in line to be “Eldest”, the leader of the people on Godspeed, but he becomes suspicious when certain secrets about Godspeed and it’s mission are revealed!

Seriously though, ignoring my poor attempt at hyping it up, it is a pretty good book.

#bookadayuk -1. Favorite book from childhood

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Sometime last month, I came across a post by Matt Cresswell (http://mcresswell.wordpress.com/). He was “blogging through June”, following this picture and talking about a different book each day. The moment I saw it, I immediately wanted to join in but since it was bang in the middle of the month I thought there wasn’t really much point, so I decided to wait until July.
Well, July is here, so I’m going to give this a try… it should be interesting.
(Yes, I have noticed that it only caters to 30 days, it was probably created just for June, but what am I if not adaptable?)

I must warn you though, reader, many of the books will most likely not be to your taste, since I seem to be a very stereotypical “Teen Girl” reader… lots of YA books I’m afraid, sorry.
Anyway, shall we proceed?

1. Favorite book from childhood.

OK, this one is simple. Despite the fact that I probably mention the Harry Potter books at least once a day, whenever I’m asked about my favorite book (from childhood or in general) the series barely pops into my mind. This is because, that slot is specifically reserved for one special book which has remained with me since I was about 7 years old.
337412Arthur High King of Britain, by Michael Morpurgo.
In primary school, we all had to read Morpurgo books during reading time, if you’re Luke (oldest childhood friend) you will know that this was a particularly excruciating experience for me since I would read ahead and finish the book before everyone else had finished chapter 3. I thought his books were good, so I took about 5 out of the school library, I only managed to get through 1 in 3 weeks though, why? Because I read the same one over and over and over again.

History has always been one of my… I suppose you could say “passions”. Add a little bit of myth and fantasy in there and I’m hooked, for me this book had it all, the history, myths, legends and magic, as well as a little bit of romance thrown in.

After primary school, I didn’t read the book again, and since I didn’t have my own copy, it sort of began to fade from my mind a bit. But then one day I was just browsing through the books in Smith’s, when I came across one that mentioned King Arthur. All of the memories suddenly came flooding back and I immediately headed over to the young readers section to find 1 copy of my old childhood favorite.

I don’t really have a favorite book now, I’ve enjoyed so many, but this one always comes to mind because it’s safe, it’s comforting. If I have nothing else to do, or if I’ve just finished a pretty heavy book and my mind and emotions are all over the place, I escape to Camelot.

 

P.S. A nice lady on twitter informed me that the hash-tag is now #bookadayuk

 

 

 

Pointless trip to Ireland

Three years ago, on a school trip to Paris, my best friend and I got into a very in-depth discussion about the places around the world we wanted to visit. They ranged from “down the road” places such as Cornwall and Bath, to the extremely ambitious North Pole (I would like to add that the latter suggestion was not one of my own). One place we both completely agreed upon was Ireland, and on that day we made a “pinky promise” that we would visit together, once we turned 18.
Three years on, my best friend (who is now, funnily enough, my boyfriend) and I are sitting in a rather small hotel room, in the center of Cork with the window wide open due to lack of air conditioning, waiting until a socially acceptable time to wander down for dinner.

One would naturally assume that being a young couple away on holiday together, we would be outside soaking up the evening sunshine and strolling the very open (and rather clean) streets of Cork trying different types of ales and whiskey whilst snapping cute photos of ourselves on the bridge over the river…
The reality however is very different. Right now for example, we are laying, side by side on a very squeaky bed, myself blogging, whilst the other half plays poker with fake money on his tablet, making me jump every now and again with yells of anger at his invisible opponent or squeals of glee brought on by his false fortune.

Why are we wasting the evening away you ask? Because we are tired.
As of last Friday, we both officially finished our A-level exams; two years after we began working towards them, they are finally over, and now, there is NOTHING that we need to do… literally.
I think we both feel as if we’ve earned a few days of doing absolutely nothing, no work, no revision and no exams.

Anyway, we are obviously not planning on staying in this very stuffy room all week, tomorrow we’re taking a bus to Blarney castle and on Wednesday we want to get a train to Cobh. But today, is a chill day, and that is ok.

I guess the point I’m trying to make is sometimes you just need a day where you just do absolutely nothing, whether it’s by yourself or with someone else, just switch off for a bit, stop worrying about everything and do something you always want to do but never get the chance to. Even If that “something” is playing a pointless game on Facebook, watching all 5 seasons of breaking bad… or even, if you’re feeling extremely rebellious, taking that trip you’ve been planning for three years, just so you can be somewhere else for a little while, away from all the people who make you feel bad when you’re wasting you’re time doing nothing… Just a thought.

S x

5 Starbucks Customers That I Seriously Don’t Understand (By A Barista)

When I found this, it IMEDIATELY reminded me of my boyfriend since a noticable amount of his time is spent talking about a) coffee, b) his job and c) people who are (in his opinion) “dumb”.
So, Jordan, I’m posting this here for you.

Sophie x

Thought Catalog

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1. The woman who orders a Grande latte in a Venti cup

Um, are you trying to make people think that you spent more money on coffee than you actually did? PLEASE tell me you won’t need that much room for milk or cream! Then why bother ordering coffee? This is just one ordering technique that always earns an eye roll from me.

2. The man who orders his coffee at EXACTLY 172 degrees

Let’s be serious for a second, how the hell do you know how hot your coffee is? My mouth tells me probably 4 temperatures, ranging from scalding hot, to damn that’s toasty, to luke warm, to did you make this last night? Are you going to pull a thermometer out of your pocket to double check the heat level? Even worse, when the person sends it back, I just want to say ok…

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The stories nobody will ever read

In school, we used to receive termly “reports” on how we were doing in class and how we were progressing in each subject. Each time I received a report, I would sit down with my parents and discuss what the teachers had to say about me, if it was good then I was allowed an extra scoop of ice cream and if it was bad I was forced to sit through a lecture of “do’s”, “don’ts” and “Try harder”. in my own defense however, it was never really THAT bad, in fact, it always seemed to say the same thing. My legacy at primary school was remaining in the top reading group throughout the whole 7 years. This of course was due to my abnormally fast and slightly intimidating reading skills and the fact that by the age of 8 I had already worked my way through the first 4 Harry Potter books and the Chronicles of Narnia. But surprisingly enough (and quite disappointingly I must add) , my school report never seemed to focus on this, what can only be described, as an amazing feet of intelligence. Instead, my teacher always managed to highlight the fact that my spelling was absolutely atrocious.

It would be wrong of me to say that this was a drastic understatement because, alas, I was never one for spelling. Right up until Year 6 I had private lessons during “art time” where I would sit in the library with the supply teacher looking, covering, writing and checking for what felt like a millennium.

Personally, I blame my poor art skills on these spelling lessons. Who knows, I may have been the next Van Gogh or even Banksy… but no, I was too busy writing and rewriting “Superstitious” and “Wednesday” to discover my hidden artist.

Alongside this, my teacher would always add a comment about my “marvelous but slightly overused” imagination. I can only guess that this was due to the fact that almost everyone of my pieces of writing included either fairies, pirates, aliens or talking animals. Yes, it is possible to incorporate these things into a newspaper article about the great fire of London, trust me. 
It may have been overused back then, but this imagination has done me well throughout my 18 years, I can honestly say that there is hardly ever a dull moment when you are able to lay and think and amuse yourself for hours, simply with your own thoughts.

Yet, the problem I seem to be having, especially recently, is the fact that so many of these “thoughts” have lead to a story, and I don’t mean a little tale, like the kind you tell to a child before they go to sleep. I mean seriously novel worthy stories with sequels and prequels and plots and characters that I’ve thought about so much that they almost seem real. 
It’s these stories which I have, for years, been trying and failing to get down onto paper. I honestly can’t explain it, it’s like it’s all “up there” and it all makes perfect sense and the more I think about it the more I just want to share it with everybody, but as soon as I try… nothing. 

My younger sister has sat, time after time, listening to my story lines, practically begging me to just “write the damn thing already”. But I’m starting to dread that it will never happen, that these thoughts will just remain up in my head for forever and and no one will ever get to enjoy them. I think I might have to leave my story notes to somebody in my will, just in case the worst happens and I never finish writing them. Until then however, I think I’m just going to have to suck it up and keep trying, maybe just power through it all, leaving the criticizing and editing until the whole thing is done. 
My plan this summer is to try and get something down,

I’m remaining optimistic, maybe this time it will work?

Sophie x