10 Books I Loved at School 📝

Top 10 Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. Click here for the list of prompts.

I finished school six years ago and that fact really freaks me out. I'm getting old, friends, and that unsettles me very much. But whatever. I didn't actually start to really love reading as much as I do now until I started secondary school when I was 11, which is a little weird to me because I've been able to read since I was 2 (thank you, mother). My primary school didn't have a proper library but obviously secondary school did and that was basically where I could be found when I wasn't in class. I didn't read every book in the library, but I did read a lot of them and some books that I read then are still my favourites now. Others, not so much.

Uglies by Scott Westerfeld - This was probably the first YA book that I'd ever read and it still sticks with me to this day. Fun fact, though: I accidentally read Specials first, not realising that it's the third book in the series. Oops. When I went back to Uglies I absolutely loved it. This book is the one that started not only my love of YA, but my love of scifi too. I went years without a copy, which is disgraceful, I know, but now I have them and I can reread them as much as I want. Huzzah.

Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell - I will admit that I had a pretty eclectic reading taste when I was a teenager. I tried to read as many classics as I could because I thought I was smart enough for them, but in reality I ended up either giving up on them or just finding them tedious (I once tried to read War and Peace and gave up after three pages because I couldn't be bothered). Nineteen Eighty-Four is one of those books that I didn't find tedious. I was sort of indirectly recommended this book by an old friend on Piczo (good grief, i feel old) and went searching for it in the school library and ended up enjoying it a lot more than I thought I would. I've actually studied it twice now and I still enjoy it as much as I did back then.

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - Here's a fun story about this book: my English class in Year 10 (or 9th grade) was supposed to study this book for our GCSE exam. We read exactly one chapter before one kid in the class declared it "too hard". One chapter. The teacher held a class vote and all but two people voted that we continue reading this book instead of changing it. We ended up reading Of Mice and Men instead, which is not one of my favourite books. I ended up reading To Kill a Mockingbird by myself because I liked what I'd read in that one chapter and it's still one of my favourites too this day. I still haven't read Go Set a Watchman, which is weird because I almost died when it was announced.

Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld - Hello, favourite book ever. I was 15 when this book was first released and because I loved the Uglies series so much I wanted it before my school librarian had even processed it into the computer system. I absolutely adored it and as soon as I heard about the second book I immediately requested that the school order it. Did it ever arrive? I don't know because by the time it came out, I was gone. The gap I had between reading the first and second book was so long (i.e. a couple of years) that I obviously had to go back and read the first book. I didn't mind, obviously.

Twilight by Stephenie Meyer - When I was younger I was a huge Twilight fan. Huge. This book is probably why I'm so obsessed with vampires now, and it's definitely why I'm so lenient with what "rules" apply to them (spoiler: there are no rules when creating vampires, do what you want as long as they're dead people who drink blood). I don't really like it now because I'm older and my reading tastes have changes, but I do still kind of defend it at times. I defend the vampire lore in it, I mean, not Edward's creepy overprotective behaviour. That shouldn't be defended.

The Dare Game by Jacqueline Wilson - If you grew up in the UK, you will have read at least one of Jacqueline Wilson's books. She's probably the most prolific children's author here so every child has read her books either alone or with a class. I don't think she was my favourite author as a child but I do remember liking her Tracy Beaker books the most. But that's probably because I watched the TV show when it was on.

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley - I'm cheating with this one because I wasn't at school anymore when I first read this book, but I was still in education so I will count it. It's actually pretty rare that I enjoy books that I have to study but Frankenstein is now one of my favourite books, and not just because I was born on Mary Shelley's birthday.

The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot - I didn't read this book until I was in secondary school because I was actually too young to read it when it was first released. The movie was one of my absolute favourite things in the entire world when I was little so of course I wanted to read it when I was old enough. I was kind of disappointed at how different it is to the movie, but that didn't stop me from enjoying it.

Bright Young Things by Anna Godbersen - I'm pretty sure that most girls go through a phase where they're obsessed with the 1920's until they realise how terrible the decade actually was. I was definitely like that and that's what attracted me to this series in the first place. I'm not as much of a fan of Anna Godbersen as I used to be (mainly because i haven't read anything by her since this series ended)), especially after reading The Luxe, but I do remember liking her books quite a lot way back when.

Dracula by Bram Stoker - Want to know how much I like this book? Last week I dragged my parents all the way to Romania because of this book. Yeah. I was around 14 when I first read Dracula, and honestly, it took a couple of reads to really like it as much as I do now. Even studying it hasn't stopped me from liking it.

What were your favourite books when you were in school (or if you're still in school, when you were a kid)?

10 Books for Fans of Strong Girl Protagonists 🚺

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Click here for the list of prompts.

I don't really have a preference for what gender characters I like to read, but I do love seeing female characters being written well. That's something that is increasingly more common these days and it makes me so happy to see because there's so much more to female characters than just pretty girls who are there to benefit male protagonists. I'm in favour of female characters of all types: girls who kick ass, girls who don't, girls who are heroes, girls who are villains, trans girls, cis girls, just girl characters are awesome. So, to show my love of well-written girls, here are some books that feature well-written girl characters!
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This is Why I'm Broke | July Book Haul 📚

I don't know how to buy books like a normal person. I'll go for months without buying any because nothing catches my eye, and then I'll somehow end up spending over £40 on books in one day, like I did multiple times last month. Oops. My bank account has been crying for me to stop spending so much money and for now I will do because I'm now broke. And I won't get any more student loan money ever again so I'm screwed!

But anyway, we're not here to discuss my money woes, we're here to see what books I bought last month.

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon - I read this book last week and ahhh it was so cute I loved it 😍 I will admit that both Dimple and Rishi were frustrating at times, but they were so well written and kind that all is forgiven.

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas - This book is my current read and I've been putting off getting my hands on it for ages for reasons that I'm still not sure of. I'm seriously kicking myself for waiting so long to read this since it is one that I've been looking forward to.

The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater - I'm kind of making it my goal to finish The Raven Cycle this year, which may be difficult because I can't really afford to buy any more hardbacks, but it's something I aim to do. I didn't love The Raven Boys as much as everyone else did, but I did still like it, so I hope I'll like the rest of the series even more.

Fire with Fire by Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian - It's been a pretty long time since I read Burn for Burn but the lack of completed series on my shelves was bugging me, so I got the sequel, which is ready for me on my TBR pile even though I've mostly forgotten what happened in Burn for Burn 😅 And no, I won't reread it because the TBR is queen and she says no rereads this month.

Double Down by Gwenda Bond - More teenage Lois eeeeep! (ノ◕ヮ◕)ノ*:・゚✧ I love the snarky voice that Lois has in these books and I can't wait to read this second installment, but for now I must obey the TBR.

Superman Vol 2: Trials of the Super Son by Peter J. Tomasi, et al. - It's probably going to be a long while before I get to read this because I'm a dumb butt and I haven't read any Superman books from the last continuity and I can't really afford to buy them right now. And that makes me sad because Jon and Damian in the same panels is giving me so many feels. Because Superdad and Batdad are the best.

Wonder Woman Vol. 1: The Lies by Greg Rucka, Liam Sharp, and Laura Martin - Same goes for this book too, I haven't read any Wonder Woman from the New 52, so this one shall wait. Wah.

Batman: The Golden Age Volume 2 by Bill Finger, Bob Kane, and Jerry Robinson - This one, on the other hand, won't have to wait too long because I'm currently reading volume 1 and it's so fast to get through because vintage comics are such a breeze. No complicated continuity, no dream sequences, no mind screws, just extremely simplistic storytelling and characterisation. Aw yeah.

What books have you bought recently?

5 Recent Favourites ❤️

My tastes in things and favourites change all the time and they especially have while I haven't been blogging. I've seen a few people do these kinds of posts or include monthly favourites in their wrap-up posts, so I thought it would be a good idea to do one of these myself. I'm including one favourite from each 'category' so one book, one movie, and so on. Because I like to have some things in my life to be organised. Not everything, but some things.

Somebody should make a tally chart of how many times I've mentioned Lois Lane on this blog because I have a feeling I talk about her a lot. But she's my mother and I can't not talk about her because Lois Lane is everything to me and I wish I could be her but I'm too shy and anxious to be as bold as she is. Anyways, I first heard of this series a couple of years ago but I didn't really give it much thought. I'm slapping myself across the wrist for that now because I read the first book, Fallout, and ahhh holy crap it was so good. Part of the reason why I love Lois Lane so much is that she has such a fiery and snarky personality and in this book it really shows through. A lot of people compare it to Veronica Mars but I don't know what that is, so to me it's like teenage Lois & Clark just without Clark because he's in Kansas and they don't really know each other yet.

I had been waiting for this movie for years and I supported it since it was announced that Gal Gadot was going to be playing Wonder Woman in BvS (which i think people gave too much of a hard time, but that's a post for another time in the year). I supported it when people were attacking her for being too thin and not having  large enough breasts, I supported it when Tumblr, a website that has been crying for a WW movie for years, started to attack it before it was even released, and I supported it when people were complaining about both the supposed lack of marketing and the actual real marketing because some people just can't be pleased. So obviously when the movie was finally released I was itching to see it. Originally my dad and I were planning to see it on opening night when we were in the USA but the screening was sold out. When I did finally go see it, ohmygod I loved it. I loved everything about it, I loved Gal, I loved Chris, I loved the cinematography, the story, I just loved it all. Do I think it's better than all the other DCEU movies? Probably, but I love them all equally because I apparently have bad taste.

I don't consider myself to be a nostalgic person, but whenever a game that I played as a child gets a remake or a remaster, I am all over it. Since getting a PS4 for Christmas I've constantly been on the look for games that I want to play because at the minute I don't have a lot of PS4 games. The problem that I have is that a lot of games available are either what I term 'bro games' (Call of Duty, FIFA, things like that) or games that just don't spark my interest. I play a lot of platforming games and also licenced games so games like Crash Bandicoot always land within my favourites. I dragged my dad to the shops so I could buy this on the day it came out and I've been playing it ever since. A lot of people have been saying that it's a lot harder than the original PS1 games, but I don't really see it that way because I couldn't get past the second warp room in Crash 2 when I was little and I managed to get 100% on the whole game in this version so... But anyways, probably the best part of this remaster is that you can play as Coco in nearly every level which is the best thing ever because Coco is adorable.

I am not really a fan of hip hop. Like, at all. But, for some reason, Death Grips really caught me ear and I've been listening to their music for pretty much the whole of July. All day every day. Apart from when Lana Del Rey's new album came out, then I went straight back to Death Grips. I have four of their albums right now (two were free downloads from their website, score) but my favourite is Exmilitary which is their debut mixtape. I think what I like about Death Grips is that to me, a white girl who is completely ignorant when it comes to rap and hip hop, they have an incredibly unique style. I love experimental styles of music and compared to other rap artists I've listened to, Death Grips definitely do have an experimental sound. It can be a little overwhelming to listen too if you're not used to noisy music (and i don't mean loud, i mean just noise)) but that's why I like it so much. If you do want to check them out, just be aware that one of their album covers is incredibly NSFW. Like, as NSFW as anything can get.

At the end of May this year I went to the USA! Before this trip, I'd never been outside of Western and Southern Europe so this was a huge deal to me. We started off in New York City, which wasn't as overwhelming as I'd assumed it would be, and ended in Washington D.C. which was so freaking hot. The only thing that really got me worked in America was money because paying for things with cash makes me horrendously anxious and also tax isn't included in the price. America, what gives? Put the tax into the price, it's less confusing. But other than that, I liked the US more than I thought I would, mainly because they have Cheetos, and we don't. I miss Cheetos so much. And being complimented on my horrible accent. I hope I can go back again someday because there's more I want to see in both New York and in Washington, but it'll be a lot of saving up because travelling to the US is not cheap. At all.

What have some of your recent favourite things been?

10 Books on My Birthday Wishlist 🎁

Top 10 Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.
Click here for the list of prompts.

It's finally August, which means that it's finally my birthday month! *blows hooter thingy*

In all honestly, I don't really like celebrating my birthday (for a lot of deeply personal reasons that i would rather not discuss here), I just like cake and presents. But don't most people like cake and presents? The only bad thing about my birthday is that it's right at the butt end of August. Literally, my birthday is the second-last day of August (put it in your calendar, winkwinknudgenudge). So, to make the pain of waiting so long for presents a little better, I've decided to make a wishlist of books that I want for my birthday.

Triple Threat by Gwenda Bond - I'm sure I don't need to repeat my love of Lois Lane for the millionth time but after reading the first book in this series, I am totally hooked on teenage Lois' story. I already have the second book and I have asked my brother for the third book because I need to see more cuteness go on with Lois and Clark SmallvilleGuy (and that's probably not a spoiler. if you know even the tiniest of ino on superman, you'll know who smallvilleguy is)

Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater - I haven't gotten around to reading The Dream Thieves yet (it's on the top of my TBR), but I do still want a complete collection of The Raven Cycle so of course I want Blue Lily, Lily Blue.

Wonder Woman: Warbringer by Leigh Bardugo - I'm kind of cheating by putting this book on the list because I've already preordered it and it comes out the day before my birthday so it'll sort of be a gift to myself.

Certain Dark Things by Silvia Moreno-Garcia - Vampires. In Mexico City. Um, yes.

Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo - I still haven't read Six of Crows, which is just terrible because my copy is signed, but that doesn't mean that I can't have a copy of Crooked Kingdom for when I do read it.

Lost Souls by Poppy Z. Brite - More vampires. But this time in New Orleans. Um, double yes.

Stars Above by Marissa Meyer - I finished the Lunar Chronicles (minus Fairest) at the beginning of the year but I still do want to read Stars Above even though I'm not exactly fond of novellas or short story collections.

Batman: A Death in the Family by Jim Starlin, Jim Aparo, and Mike DeCarlo - It's probably terrible that I consider myself a huge Batman fan and yet I still haven't read this storyline. But, I do have an excuse: it's pretty damn expensive. I get that it's a hugely iconic storyline and all that but come on, DC, please lower the price for me. And also, with what's happened in Batman comics recently, I'd rather go through back issues than to keep up with them weekly. And also drown myself in self-insert fics.

Superman vol.1: What Price Tomorrow? by George Perez and Jesus Merino - Recently, I decided that I wanted to start keeping up with Superman comics because, as I said above, I'm not too thrilled about the current decisions with Batman (*shakes fist at DC*). However, I completely forgot that I haven't read any New 52 Superman books and the current continuity is a continuation of the previous one so if I just dive right into Rebirth Superman, I probably won't have a clue of what's going on.

Wonder Woman Vol. 1: Blood by Brian Azzarello, Cliff Chiang, and Tony Akins - Ditto goes for Wonder Woman, but I've never read a single Wonder Woman story before, and the movie (which was aweeesomeee btw) has made me want to start reading them, so back to the New 52 I go. Yay?

What books are on your birthday wishlist?