Saturday, 28 February 2015

Olivia's Catastrophe ~ Social Media Fails

Morning everyone!

First of all I want to say a huge thanks to everyone on Pinterest who is following me! You people have made this month definitely the best when it comes to my activity on there, and I love how many people are contributing to my group board. 900 followers is amazing!

Here comes another discussion post! Social media is a very important part of daily life nowadays - almost everyone is on it. It's a way to stay connected, discover awesome things and share your own with the world as well. And even though one person can't be on all of the sites all of the time, there are just some I really can't do...


Tumblr


Before I made my blog, I wanted to make a tumblr because I had heard everyone go on and on about it. To this day, there is an empty account with my name on it something with zero things posted. Nothing at all. I honestly couldn't find my way around the site, and even though people do run blogs on it I am still clueless as to how. :/

Instagram


This is something a lot of my friends have, and it looks pretty cool if I am honest. Sharing photos and all that. But... it makes me think of Flickr and the fact that I already have pictures on Facebook, and even though I have been told multiple times that it is different, I just don't understand and not something I will be getting soon.

Snapchat


Another thing based off pictures you say? Yes, but this works on phones and they have cool caption options as well. I actually like the looks of this, but the reason I don't have it you will see in a bit.

Facebook


I do have this one. And I think it is really handy because it is how I keep in contact with friends who have moved away and see what they are up to. But I just have trouble with it because I can never be bothered to go online. It's just hard for me to remember. My cover photo is from two Christmas's ago, even :P
Phones

And this is the reason why I don't have snapchat. I am just terrible at working my phone in general. I just find it hard to text with such little screens and for some reason I never have enough phone credit to do anything. I top it up and then BAM it's gone xD So basically my phone is just for listening to music xD

Olivia's Question: Is there a social media site that you just can't grasp?

Olivia-Savannah x

Thursday, 26 February 2015

50/50 (Movie Review)

Hello folks!

Today I’m going to tell you about this movie called 50/50 released in 2011. It has a really great actor in it who I love called Joseph Gordon-Levitt. It also helps that he’s absolutely gorgeous good at convincing me of whatever role he’s playing  ;)For some reason I thought this film was something totally different when I picked it up and bought it, but I’m still so glad I did.

The idea of the movie is as follows. Adam is just a normal every day guy when he goes to the doctors to see if they can help solve his back problems he’s been feeling. To his surprise his doctor tells him he has a rare form of spinal cancer. His best friend, mother and the therapist he starts seeing help him through the sudden change in his life. Throughout the movie Adam learns what he really needs in life, and what isn’t so important.

There are also some other great actors/actresses here that I don’t just because of the added bonus of their appearance ^^ Anna Kendrick is starred as Adam’s therapist, and she’s another actress I am a BIG fan of. There is also Seth Rogen who I didn’t know as an actor before this. What I liked about this film so much was that it told the cancer story in another way. You get films to letters to God where all your mates end up crying, and books like The Fault in Our Stars, but then this films brings cancer into the life of an average party life adult guy. I had never seen that angle of it and how he and the people around him dealt with it. I thought it was really realistic and it was also super sad, but then meaningful :’) I loved it. It wasn't all sad though, there was some light moments in it too.
 
I think the best thing about this film was that even though the main character was diagnosed, he still wanted to live his everyday life and be as active as he used to be. He didn't want his illness to dominate his life, and the more it seeped in the more he struggled to cope.

The film was directed by Jonathan Levine who also directed Warm Bodies (a movie I have yet to see). The film itself is rated a 12, and it runs for about 96 minutes. I loved this film so much, I would probably give it five stars :D

Olivia’s Question: Have you donated to Cancer Research yet?

Olivia-Savannah x

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Kolchae (Book Review &Giveaway!)

Hi there!

Title: Kolchae (#2 in Annals of Lusiartha trilogy)
Author:  R. Ann Humphries
Publisher:  29 Palms Publishing LLC
Published Date: 15th December 2014
Rating: 4 stars
 

Synopsis: Lusiartha is at war. The Sovereign is moving his Regiment in full force against the Siarthens, targeting Rilan and his fellow kolchae.

Supplies in the underground base grow limited, spirits are low, and tensions grow between Rilan and Noril.

When a kolcha is captured during a desperate Setu raid, Rilan must choose between his responsibilities as the rebel leader, and his loyalty to his friends.

The fate of a nation hangs in the balance, but is Rilan strong enough to sacrifice his friends to save Lusiartha?


Review: I was originally going to give this book a rating of three stars, but by the time I got to the ending I knew I would have to raise it to four. Why is that? Well, it’s because this book is so clever.

I liked the second half of the book more than the first. But I also liked this book more than the last one, and that is because I found the writing style was better and it was easier for me to connect to the characters. The beginning of the book tries up any loose ends from the previous book and moves on. There was a lot of character development in this story (gotta love that ;) ) and a lot of war as well. At times I felt like there was a bit too much war. But then again, it was supposed to be the main plot.

In a way I wished this book had a different point of view and was read as one of the other Kolchae. But then again, I also didn’t want that because Rilan had so much to offer in this book.

Now, let me tell you why this book was so clever. Even though we are in a completely different world from our own and the situation and circumstances are different, I felt like there were a lot of themes we could connect to and should think about. There was the theme of slavery and war, and how those two things can change people and their principles. There was the theme of friendship and love, which is a common one. Another was mixing cultures and then there was also the theme of racism, seeing as in their world all there is is black and white, but that might change now.

This book is not for the faint hearted either. As I was hearing about the results of torture I was cringing inwardly because that must have hurt. So be prepared for that. Also, what I loved was that although a war was going on on the surface, there was also the struggle between powers – the war commander versus the leader of the people. It was a good addition to the story.

There was a pretty big plot twist in this novel which has set up what might be a good book for the final one in this trilogy! And the cliffhanger ending helped with that. I cannot wait to read the final book in this series.
 
Giveaway! Enter to win one of the two ebook copies of Kolchae. Open internationally! Just click the word below!
 

GIVEAWAY!


Olivia’s Question: What themes do you like reading about in a novel?

Olivia-Savannah x

Saturday, 21 February 2015

Nailpolish Haul!

Morning everyone!

Back when I was in Portugal my older sisters managed to find a shop that sold nail polish at a price of a euro each! Naturally I jumped on this deal and bought five of my own colours. I wanted to share with you what they were like! I don't think I took pictures of me wearing the purple, so you shall have to bear with.


 
This was the pale pink colour that was almost like a beige. Because I currently don't have any white nail polish, when it comes to designs I think this will have to be my substitute!

 
I was really happy with this blue because it was an XXL and still the same price! Sky blue looks really good to me :)

 
The green looked different than I expected on my nails and I don't think it would work very well for designs, but as it's own colour I suppose it's okay. It was just a pretty weird shade of dark green :/
 
 
You can never go wrong with pink :P
 
Olivia's Question: Are you someone who wears a lot of nail polish?
 
Olivia-Savannah x
 

Thursday, 19 February 2015

The Glass Arrow (Review & Giveaway!)

Hi there!

Title: The Glass Arrow
Author:  
Kristen Simmons
Publisher:  Tor Books
Published Date:  10th February 2015

Rating: 4 Stars

*Thank you to the publisher for the review copy*

Synopsis: The Handmaid’s Tale meets Blood Red Road in Glass Arrow, the story of Aya, who lives with a small group of women on the run from the men who hunt them, men who want to auction off breeding rights to the highest bidder.

In a world where females are scarce and are hunted, then bought and sold at market for their breeding rights, 15-year old Aya has learned how to hide. With a ragtag bunch of other women and girls, she has successfully avoided capture and eked out a nomadic but free existence in the mountains. But when Aya’s luck runs out and she’s caught by a group of businessmen on a hunting expedition, fighting to survive takes on a whole new meaning.

Review: This was one of my most anticipated reads of 2015, and I was so happy to receive a review copy! I can’t wait to buy this one in print; that’s how good it was! I wanted to read it so much because I want to read The Handmaid’s Tale and loved Blood Red Road, both books which this was compared to. And for once I read the synopsis and decided it was one I wanted to read based off of that.

I will say that the beginning was a bit slow (which was why this had to be four stars instead of five), and I wanted the story to move on. But once it did, then I was completely blow away! The book does throw you right into the novel, so it would be easier if you do read the synopsis for this one first so you don’t end up too confused.

I loved the characters a lot. I thought Aya was pretty cool because she was a fierce and independent character who would do everything herself if she could do. She also really valued family, which is something I value highly too, so I could connect with her on that level.  But my favourite character had to be Kiran. He was patient, passionate and (without giving anything away) someone I would love to know. His role started as a small one and grew bigger as the story progressed.

This story also had some disturbing factors to it as well. The whole system of how the girls are handled was a bit spooky, especially if I imagine it as a reality. There were some parts that had me shivering at the thought of them. What they did to the Pips, some of the deaths and the idea of the plague… it definitely had its own dark elements to the society.

I wouldn’t say the world building was spectacular, but it was just the right amount of this story. I could still picture everything and it was enough to keep me focused on the plot and characters.

The ending was absolutely lovely ^.^ The slow burning romance was a definite plus as well and made me so happy. I loved this read and definitely want to see more from this author!
 
Giveaway time! This one is only open to US & Canada (apologies to my international readers!) Win a paperback and final copy of The Glass Arrow! Just click the word below.

GIVEAWAY!


Olivia’s Question: What would you give up for your family?

Olivia-Savannah x

Tuesday, 17 February 2015

The Canary Room (Review)

Hi there!

Title: The Canary Room
Author:  Edwin and Linda Casebeer
Publisher:  Serealities Press 

Published Date:  7th August 2014
Rating: 4 Stars

*Thank you to the publisher for sending me a copy for review*

Synopsis: In the spring of 1945, a young boy in the Pacific Northwest will make a life-or-death decision.

Every morning, Herman "Hermy" Auerbach awakens to the pre-dawn song of canaries. The porch where he sleeps contains dozens of the songbirds. Outside, in the wider world, the Second World War enters its final, bloody months.

Hermy comes to the Williams' house under protest after his parents' divorce, a result of his father leaving home initially to pursue his impossible dream of becoming an intelligence officer. Herman's mother, remarried to a sailor, abandons her son to move across the country and start another family with her new husband. By the time he takes up residency in the canary room, Hermy has already suffered both from abandonment and bullying.

Life with the large, messy Williams clan offers Hermy little relief, although he bonds with the other boys in the family. When the boys hatch a wild escape plan, Hermy finds himself facing death, and deciding if his life is worth the struggle to survive after losing everything.

A compelling story of one boy's struggle to survive the uncertainties of foster care and the war, The Canary Room brings to life the daily challenges of life on the US home front in vivid, historically accurate detail.

Review: When I began this book I didn’t know it was written in a stream of consciousness style. At first that was pretty hard for me to adapt to, but after two chapters I was loved it. I am someone who likes books which try something unique or different, and this style was just that, and done well. It might not be for everyone, but it was for me J It also meant there were three different fonts: one for flashbacks, one for thoughts, one for present day.
 

I will admit that the only bad thing about this book is that it isn’t for people who need several plot twists to keep going. This book doesn’t have much of a plot really, but it’s more about gradually revealing what Hermy had to live through in his past and all the struggles he had to face. It wasn’t anything troublesome happening in the present. So I will say that this book is something strictly for those who like character driven novels, and not plot driven ones.

BUT that doesn’t mean that this book isn’t good. There are some lovely characters in there, like Sonny who is always influenced by his older brothers and maintains that childish innocence about him. Hermy is a boy beyond his years as well. Sandy was also one of my favourite characters, because although he could’ve left Hermy on his own when his mother didn’t show up, he didn’t. Even though Hermy had gone through an awful lot in his life and been let down quite a bit, Sandy was always a constant there for him, and was such a good and loyal friend. I liked him a lot ^.^ Hermy was also a character who had a lot of thoughts, but didn't always speak them.

One word of warning is that there is quite a bit of colourful language used here, due to one character who has a tendency to use those words. So if you try to avoid that, then this book might not be for you. Also, I think this book did a good job of portraying everyday citizens opinions on the war and what happened at Pearl Harbour. It’s a theme that runs through the book, but isn’t the main focus.

Overall, I don’t have too much to say. I liked it a lot :D Oh, and isn’t that cover amazing?

Olivia’s Question: Do you have a pet/s at home?

Olivia-Savannah x

Saturday, 14 February 2015

Olivia's Catastrophe ~ To Be Read, Or Not Read? & Book Haul #2

Hey there! Happy Valentine's Day!

You can all be my Valentine's because you keep on helping me hit all those milestones! Today I am gonna send lots of love to my Bloglovin followers because we just reached 800! Thank you ^.^

Today I have a discussion post for you (I should really post more of these more often!) This one might be more of a rant than a discussion because honestly, I don’t know how to solve this problem.


Right now my TBR list has 1480 books. If (and that’s not saying that I will) I read 100 books every year it will actually take me 14 years and a bit to read all of this. I also keep my TBR on Shelfari and not Goodreads, because I am weird like that :P So will I actually be reading everything on my to be read list, or will it all be ignored?

I think that like every reader, I do intend to read each and every one of these books. In fact, at the moment I am reading some of the oldest books on the list and trying to work backward. There are just SO many good books out there and I really want to get to them all! To help me get there I have even decided that when I hit 1500 books I am going to stop adding more. Which means any books I now own are no longer on the list, so there is more space :D Reading book blogs never really helps because I hear about all these fabulous books I want to read!
 
But when it comes to a TBR, what can really be done about it? Is there ever enough time to read all the books you want to read? It is hard to choose which may or may not be worth your time to read, which means you have to give everything a chance.

One of my biggest problems with my TBR is that I end up starting a series and promising to get back to them… and then I never do! I have a lot of books where I have read the first one and promised to read the next, but then gotten distracted by another good book. It’s a hard life.

Book Haul time!

Speaking of owning too many books, these are the ones I have received since the start of 2015. I am hoping to make these book hauls a bit more frequent so there aren't too many in one go like this xD

Ebooks:







| Flesh Worn Stone by John A Burks was free on Amazon | A Girl Who Kissed a Lie and The Girl who Read the Stars by Skylar Dorset were free on Amazon (and I own the first book in the series!) | Sharp by Alex Hughes was won in a giveaway from Fictionzeal | The Boy Next Door was won from Sassy and Dangerous |

Ebooks for review:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 Thank you to authors, publishers and other bloggers for sending these through!
 
Print books:
 
 
| Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris, Immortal Ever After by Lynsay Sands, Chained by Night by Larissa Ione and No Competition by Debbie Macomber were won in a giveaway on Celestial Reviews | We Were Liars by Emily Lockhart (already read! Thanks to my best friend for buying it ^^) | Uncross the Stars by Janell Rhiannon (for review) | Bait by Courtney Farrel (for review) | 
 
Olivia’s Question: How many books are on your TBR, and how do you choose what to read next?
 
Olivia-Savannah x

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Shut Up (Review & Giveaway!)

Hi there!

Sooo last week I just hit 700 Pinterest followers. Which means within a week I have received another 100 to make it 800! Do you know what that means? It means you lot are absolutely awesome and currently my favourite people in the world! *hugs to all the followers*

Title: Shut Up

Author:  Anne Tibbets
Publisher:  Premier Digital Publishing
Published Date:  1st July 2014
Rating: 5 stars
 
*Thank you to the author for the review copy*

Synopsis: Mary’s older sister, Gwen, has screwed up everything. Not only is Gwen pregnant at seventeen, but she’s also decided to marry the Creep who knocked her up. Now Mary is powerless to stop her family from imploding. Her parents are freaking out, and to top it off, the Creep has a gross fascination with Mary while Gwen enjoys teasing her to tears for sport. Despite her brother’s advice to shut up, Mary can’t keep her trap closed and manages to piss off Mom so much that it comes to blows. Mary doesn’t know what to do, and all her attempts to get help are rejected. When she finally plans her escape, she fails to consider how it could destroy them all.

Review: Well, with this book I have read all of Anne Tibbets books, and rated them all five stars. Honestly, this was amazing. It had a lot of themes about problems in here and I admired the way Tibbets managed to take a character of a twelve year old girl and tell her story so well.

The best thing about this had to be the themes it dealt with and how it managed to bring them across. A lot is in here. Mary’s family doesn’t have the most money ever, and they are a pretty big family as well. Gwen, her older sisters ends up pregnant at a young age and then marries. Mary is verbally abused by her family and sexually harassed by The Creep (Gwen’s boyfriend.) As well as that, depression was featured here. I think the thing about this book was that it was still realistic even though it was dealing with an abundance of things. And it was a meaningful story as well.
 
The story is told through Mary’s and her older brother, Paul’s, point of view. What I liked the two points of view was that they were complete opposite characters. Mary tried to please everyone no matter how much they hated her. Paul tried to be invisible and so he was seen as the obedient one. It was interesting to see how they both faced the same problem with different methods. Between them this story managed to break my heart and made me feel for the characters.
 
This was a bit of a depressing read, but then again it is a reality to a lot of people. I admire that Anne Tibbets always writes about subjects which can be hard to write effectively about in a manner that makes me want to reach out and do something to help those who suffer in such a way.
The book was also told through flashbacks as well as current life. What is happening in the present day really depends on what has happened in the past, and I liked the way the author made the two parts each play a significant enough role. We knew the outcome but didn’t know what could’ve happened to cause the outcome. That made it very interesting.
I am eagerly awaiting her next book. I will be the first to buy it for myself!
 
Giveaway Time! This is an international giveaway, so anyone can enter! Click the word 'giveaway' below to enter and possibly win one of two signed paperback copies.

GIVEAWAY


Olivia’s Question: Can you describe your family in one word?
 
Olivia-Savannah x

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

City Center (Review & Giveaway!)

Hi there!

After a year and a bit of having the bright orange design, I decided it would be a good idea to have a bit of a change! Although orange will always be my favourite colour and traces of it are still around, I have shifted to my second favourite, green! None of this would've been possible without the wonderful Talina @ Sassy and Dangerous! Thank you so much ^.^ I will be forever grateful for all your help!

And as usual, don't forget to enter the huge birthday bash giveaway!

Title: City Center (The New Agenda #1)
Author:  
Simone Pond
Publisher:  Ktown Waters Publishing
Published Date:  25th September 2013

Rating: 3 Stars

*Thank you to the author for the review copy*

Synopsis:  During the man-made apocalypse in the 21st century, a group of elites killed off a majority of the population. Only two groups of survivors remained - those selected to reside inside the utopian Los Angeles City Center and the rebels, relegated to live on the Outside. Centuries later, Ava Rhodes escapes the City Center and goes on a journey to seek the truth about her supposed utopian home, sending the City Center’s leader, Chief Morray, into an obsessive pursuit for his property.

Review: This was a good dystopian with an interesting story and a pretty nice plot as well. It was something I enjoyed reading even though I couldn’t quite love it as much as I wanted to. I believe that it was because this was somewhat a ‘typical’ dystopian of sorts, and I have read a lot of those. Nonetheless it was still a quick and enjoyable read.

Ava is the main character of novel and someone I really liked. She wasn’t necessarily a strong character, but someone who questioned the rules. She didn’t break them because she liked to rebel, but because she couldn’t see a reason for them to stand. She also have a very logical thinking mind. Ava did what was needed to get out of her situations, and embraced every day like she was learning something new. I loved it about her and I saw her as a nice character. Someone who had been bred for perfection but wanted something else instead.

The world building was good. I liked the advanced technology they had and how the system of living was different from most dystopian books. But when I heard the word ‘Beautifier’ I couldn’t help my mind zooming towards Hunger Games thoughts. And there were a few other things, like the need for revolution and the wall separating the sheltered and manipulated people within while there are the people outside live freely – those kind of things that made this book somewhat blend into all the others.

What I imagine the beautified
 results would look like.
The romance was simply that – a romance. It was straight forward. No silly love triangles or anything, and no insta-love although the romance did go quickly. However, I find that this whole book was fairly fast paced and there was never anything that dragged. In fact, it was the perfect pace – I was always interested in turning to the next page.

I do think the emotions or some things mentioned could’ve been further developed in this novel. There are two books to come though, so maybe I will see some of those things come through then!

The villain, Morray, was also a character I loved. He was pretty much completely off his rocker and when you learn of all the things he had been doing to the people and the whole system in general it was a bit weird and kind of disturbing. But in terms of villains, that’s what made him perfect.

Looking forward to the next book!
 
Giveaway: Open Internationally! Win an ebook version of the entire trilogy of City Center. Click here to enter the GIVEAWAY!

Author: Simone Pond is an award-winning author of a dystopian fiction series, which includes The City Center, The New Agenda, and The Mainframe.

She grew up in Kensington, Maryland - a small town just outside of Washington D.C. As a young girl, she loved writing in her journal and making up stories, but after reading S.E. Hinton's The Outsides, everything changed. Amazed that a woman could write so convincingly from a teenage boy's perspective, Pond became determined to become a writer as well.Agenda, and The Mainframe.

Pond currently lives in Los Angeles with her husband and their Boston Terrier. Learn more at simonepond.com

Olivia’s Question: If you could have one thing in your daily routine happen automatically every time you woke up, what would it be? (example: teeth already brushed, hair style perfect…)

Olivia-Savannah x

Saturday, 7 February 2015

Olivia's Catastrophe ~ Romeo & Juliet

Hi there folks!

Don't forget to enter my birthday bash giveaway, or my ongoing ebook one!

Today I wanted to write about my love/hate relationship with Romeo and Juliet due to approaching Valentine's Day! I studied it in English two years ago, and it was pretty fun to do. We also had an awesome teacher, which helped a lot. But why do I love it and hate it at the same time?
 

Hate: I really don’t like the idea of love on first sight. The two meet each other and from a look they are suddenly in love without really knowing anything about each other and what they have done in the past. Which, always seems a bit iffy to me. I may have been all for this idea when I was younger, but not anymore xD I also don’t like the idea that after three days of knowing each other they are ready to die for each other? Yes, it adds tragedy to the tale, and yes, some people do tell me this is supposed to be a warning tale so therefore it does a good job of sending it off in a warning. But in my mind’s eye, it is two people who don’t really know each other too well and already are prepared to die for each other. Is that true love? Or just taking things wayyyyy to fast?

Love: Oh my goodness this book is SO beautifully written. Really, it is the best writing style I have perhaps ever read. And the language flows so well and sounds so poetic when you read it. As for the quotes and passages they pull out of this play… well, it’s all be earned. Shakespeare truly did a good job of writing this and I can’t imagine it being put any other way. I’m going to share some of my favourite quotes from the play below.
 

Hate or love the films?

I have seen quite a lot of the Romeo and Juliet film adaptions. Firstly, let me say my favourite musical ever is High School Musical, I mean, West Side Story! And now that is one that is purely based off Romeo and Juliet but is beautiful all the same and I advise you see it!

There is a more modern day adaption featuring a young Leonardo Di Caprio in it. I did like the beginning but really, I didn’t enjoy that movie that much. It wasn’t anything to spectacular and I felt kind of meh watching it.

I watched the BBC version which is a bit old fashioned and not really for me either. Again… meh. The acting was not very good and in general it was very bad, in my opinion was the quality was bad as well. :/

But my all time favourite version which does a great job of portraying this wonderful/terrible play and also has the perfect characters playing each role is the one directed by Franco Zeffirelli, released in 1968.

I have yet to see the 2013 version though, and will let you know what I thought when I see it!

Olivia’s Question: Do you believe in love at first sight?

Olivia-Savannah x