Saturday, 29 August 2015

Nail Extravaganza ~ City of Bones #2

Hello!

A while ago I made this nail art, which was a take on City of Bones. Of course, I just had to do it again. This time I chose different runes and also made a nail art tutorial video!


So here are some images, and a video for you to try it out yourself! All the colours you really need are black and white, making it even easier to work with. 





Video Tutorial: 


Olivia's Question: Are you a fan of the Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare?

Olivia-Savannah x

Thursday, 27 August 2015

Tackle Your TBR Read-a-thon Sign Up!

Hey there!

Just a short post here from me today! I wanted to let you all know I have signed up for the 2015 Tackle Your TBR Read-a-thon! It runs from the 14th of September to the 23rd! Why did I sign up? Because I have a massive TBR pile in my room, and one on my kindle, and I am going to try and cut a chunk out of it! Mostly I am going to be reading books for my 2015 reading challenge as I am trying to finish that off soon (and hopefully early.)



The books I hope to read are: 




13 Little Blue Envelopes
Isla and the Happily Ever After
For a Fee of 2 Shillings
The Goldfinch 

I invite YOU to join in with the challenge! Sign up here!

Olivia's Question: What was the last read-a-thon you participated in? Have you read any of these?

Olivia-Savannah x

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Trigger Warning (Review & Giveaway!)

Hey there, everyone!

Title: Trigger Warning
Author: Neil Gaiman
Publisher: William Morrow
Published Date: 3rd February 2015
Rating: 4 Stars

*Thanks to the publisher for the review copy*

Synopsis: Trigger Warning explores the masks we all wear and the people we are beneath them to reveal our vulnerabilities and our truest selves. Here is a rich cornucopia of horror and ghosts stories, science fiction and fairy tales, fabulism and poetry that explore the realm of experience and emotion. In "Adventure Story"--a thematic companion to The Ocean at the End of the Lane--Gaiman ponders death and the way people take their stories with them when they die. His social media experience "A Calendar of Tales" are short takes inspired by replies to fan tweets about the months of the year--stories of pirates and the March winds, an igloo made of books, and a Mother's Day card that portends disturbances in the universe. Gaiman offers his own ingenious spin on Sherlock Holmes in his award-nominated mystery tale "The Case of Death and Honey". And "Click-Clack the Rattlebag" explains the creaks and clatter we hear when we're all alone in the darkness.

A sophisticated writer whose creative genius is unparalleled, Gaiman entrances with his literary alchemy, transporting us deep into the realm of imagination, where the fantastical becomes real and the everyday incandescent. Full of wonder and terror, surprises and amusements,Trigger Warning is a treasury of delights that engage the mind, stir the heart, and shake the soul from one of the most unique and popular literary artists of our day.

Review: I was really excited to read this one because I have been meaning to try books by this author seeing as I had heard a lot of brilliant things about his writing. I was also a bit wary though, because short story collections are not usually my thing and I didn’t want it to let me down. But luckily, this book was fabulous.

There are wayyy to many stories in this collection for me to take the time to review every single one. I am going to mention a few of those that I liked and what I liked about his writing in general. Some of the stories are clever ones, with twists and hidden meanings that you have to think about after reading them. Some are more realistic than others, some a bit quirky and funny, and some a twist on other things. I think I liked the ones that were twists on other things, like Fairytales and so on (there were two of those) and also the ones where you had to think about them a bit to determine their hidden meaning.

There were some poems thrown into this short story collection as well. I may be mistaken but I counted four. I wanted a few more, to be honest. Two of the poems were prose style poems, so they are pretty easy to follow even if you aren’t really into poetry. I really loved how creative his poetry was because first of all, poetry in general is underrated and then again, it might have been simplistic at times, but the meaning was always clear and a likeable message to read into it.

One of the short stories was called Nothing O’Clock. Now, Neil Gaiman has written episodes for a personal favourite series of mine that I have watched since I was a child called Doctor Who. And in this short story he writes a Doctor Who story. I loved LOVED it so much. It was written so wonderfully, I could simply imagine it being one of the episodes and it would’ve been wicked if it could actually become one. So I was busy fangirling. It was like reading fanfiction, but seeing as it was done by someone legit to Doctor Who, it was like reading the best quality fanfiction there is. That’s the best way to describe it.

In general, a lovely collection of short stories that were wonderfully written. I am sure there is a bit of something for everyone in there. And I wish I could steal Neil Gaiman’s writing talent ^.^

Links: Goodreads and Amazon!

Video! My latest video is a book review of The Dark Tides by Mark Piggot :)



Giveaway! Enter to win a Hardcover of Trigger Warning! Open to US/Canada only.


Olivia’s Question: Do you like fanfiction?

Olivia-Savannah x

Saturday, 22 August 2015

Olivia Snaps #1, Blogiversary & Giveaway!

Hello there everyone :)



On this fine Saturday I wanted to share some photography with you! Today they are all going to be book-related and I am sure you will have seen some of these on my instagram if you follow me there.


Without further ado, here they are! (They have all been watermarked because I share my images on Pinterest and wouldn't want them to get stolen.)




The Winner's Curse by Marie Rutkoski - a book I have read but never actually reviewed on here. I was at a hotel in Switzerland and decided it looked so nice resting on my bed covers beside me!


My Lunar Chronicles collection! I took this one on my shelf before I marathoned the series. Now I love them all and cannot wait for Winter to come out!


This the collection of three of the four books I have in the Gone series by Michael Grant. I took this one inside a tunnel at a park where I love to read. I just liked how it looked.


This is my faithful park bench called Bennie. If I want to read outside, you can usually find me on that bench with my books. Bennie has been good to me.



My blue book collection! I think this one speaks for itself. 


This picture was made for the instagram book and a toy tag. It's also my collection of Judy Blume books about growing up I received when I was 12. They'll forever be remembered as part of the my pre-teenagerhood. Oh, and Deenie is still a favourite book of mine ^.^

That's all for this post! I hope you liked the pictures :3

Blogiversary and Giveaway! Now, this is only a little bit of the blog post because I almost forgot it was going to be my blogiversary today! Can you believe that? I have been blogging for 2 years now and I almost forgot!

I am never good at remembering anniversaries and birthdays anyway :P I would make a list of people I would love to thank for commenting and being my friends, and those who helped me get started. But to be honest, I think you all know who you are and how much I love you :) So this is for all of you guys!

Feel free to enter my paperback giveaway of the book The Beckoning of Gyanganj by Chandan Pathak! A romantic and mythical Indian mythology book. Open internationally, of course! 

Olivia's Question: Do you like doing photography as well?

Olivia-Savannah x

Thursday, 20 August 2015

Uglies (Review)

Hi there!

Title: Uglies (Uglies #1)
Author:  Scott Westerfeld
Publisher:  Simon Pulse 
Published Date:  8th February 2005
Rating: 2 Stars

Synopsis: Tally can't wait to turn sixteen and become Pretty. Sixteen is the magic number that brings a transformation from a repellent Ugly into a stunningly attractive Pretty, and catapults you into a high-tech paradise where your only job is to have a really great time. In just a few weeks, Tally will be there. But Tally's new friend, Shay, isn't sure she wants to be Pretty. She'd rather risk life on the outside. When Shay runs away, Tally learns about a whole new side of the Pretty world - and it isn't very pretty. The authorities offer Tally the worse choice she can imagine: find her friend and turn her in, or never turn Pretty at all. The choice Tally makes changes her world forever.

Review: This is going to be a hard review to write, for many reasons.



Let me first say, this book might deserve a lot more stars than I gave it. But that’s because in general I found it kind of, meh. This book had a lot of hype around it as well, which set my expectations kind of high. That might also be a reason why I was a bit disappointed.

The thing is, this was one of the first dystopian novels. And I know that if I read this before Divergent and The Hunger Games, I would’ve loved it. But I didn’t, and I read it afterwards. Which made it fall short in comparison.

What I enjoyed most about this book was the message behind it. This one is by far the most meaningful dystopian I have read. There is a lot of messages about friendship, about life being what you think it is, and also about betrayal in there. That was good to read and I liked the idea of the Uglies and Pretties, and I think that Pretty not being all it seemed is something we should think about when living everyday life as well.

My main problem was that I didn’t really feel much for the characters here. Tally was okay, Shay was okay, David was okay and nothing special. The plot was interesting and occasionally perked my interest, but the action wasn’t anything that got me too excited and had me turning every page to know what was going to happen. And then when it comes to the romance, it was there and straightforward (for once! None of that love triangle business,) but it was kind of meh and not really a bit necessity for the story for anything.


In general, it was kind of meh. And yet, I will still read the second book!

Links: Goodreads and Amazon!

Olivia’s Question: Do you use make up? Why?

Olivia-Savannah x

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Antman (Movie Review)

Good morning :D

Today I am going to be reviewing the 2015 Marvel release of Antman for you! I am sure most of you know I am a huge fan of superhero movies in general. But when it came to Antman I was very skeptical before I went to see it. I didn’t like the idea. I mean, the power of being small and managing ants? Didn’t sound like such a cool power to me and I could see myself having the same affect Chappie had one me. I would find it hard to sympathise with a character that wasn’t the normal kind of human. I don’t know why, but when movies have slow motion points and I was supposed to sympathise with the emotions of the robot, I couldn’t do it. I worried I would have the same problem when it came to this miniature and yet equally as strong guy.

The movie is about a superhero who can shrink to the size of ants and yet have the strength of a human. He can also control ants so they can work with him. But someone else wants to have a similar kind of robot or creature so that they can help win wars with it. When no one sees the attack coming, it’s pretty hard to stop it. But the problem is, such power in the wrong hands doesn’t bode well to Hank, who created the first Antman suit. It all falls down to an unsuspected father to foil the company’s plot before it turns out of hand.

The movie ended up being better than I had expected. But I still wouldn’t classify it as ‘good’. When it comes to superhero movies, it falls underneath Captain America, which makes it my worst superhero film. Oh well.

One thing I really did like was Paul Rudd’s acting. In fact, he was definitely the star of the film. He played his character well and in general I did like his character. A guy who just was released from prison and wanted to go about the clean way in earning money so he could be the dad his daughter would look up to. But then finds out that holding down a job with a record like his isn’t easy.

Who I didn’t like was the female main character, who was the daughter of Hank Pym, called Hope. She was played by Evageline Lilly and I am not entirely sure exactly what it was, but I found her character to be whiny and annoying. It seemed like she had a lot of the same characteristics as an annoyed teenager when she was supposed to be an adult, and that bothered me quite a bit. She didn’t impress me.

There was some humor in this film. At the beginning it was simply too forced and well, I couldn’t laugh and instead found myself rolling my eyes. But when it came towards the halfway point in the film, the jokes suddenly became just right and I could laugh because they were actually funny.

The action was alright in itself, but it wasn’t too spectacular. Most of it was done when he was in Ant form anyway, so it couldn’t really be. And like I feared I would be unable to sympathise, it did happen. I wasn’t happy with the slow motion sections and it didn’t interest me at all. When they were fighting on a toy train set and they were mini it was supposed to be funny and all. To me it just seemed sort of pathetic if I am honest ><

Of course the movie did have to go through the whole ‘this is the reason we can’t call the Avengers.’ Because usually when it comes to problems like this, why wouldn’t they? But I was glad it did that though, so fans like me couldn’t be picky about it :D And of course a guest Avenger had to appear. But I really liked that part because it was one of my favourite characters from Captain America 2.

Comment on the End Credits: I don’t really need the promise of Antman coming back because well, I wasn’t so intrigued. But I guess he will. And it was nice to see some more guest Avengers.

I might be being harsh on this movie, but it was okay. I might just have some high standards with superhero movies after Iron Man xD

New Video! To match up with my Saturday post, here is my video version of my book haul :)

Olivia’s Question: What would you do if you were miniature?

Olivia-Savannah x

Saturday, 15 August 2015

My Hoarding Catastrophe - Classic Crazy!

Hi guys!

Time for a book haul! I thought I was being good lately. But there was a book festival and it came to my town... which means I had to be there. I only had 20 euros with me but the books were so cheap D: I managed to get about 7 books there, and the others I collected over time as well. So this book haul has quite a few paperbacks in there... and quite a few review copies as well! 



Paperbacks: I went a bit crazy on the classics here...

| 9th Judgement - James Patterson | Dominion - C.J. Sansom | The Scarlet Letter - Nathaniel Hawthorne | The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon | Night of All Evil - J. M. Shorney (For Review) | Frankenstein - Mary Shelly | Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy | War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy | The Belonging (The Feud) - Grant Harbison (Giveaway Win) | Kitty Hawk and the Curse of the Yukon Gold - Iain Reading (For Review) | The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde - Robert Louis Stevenson | Vostok - Steve Alten (Giveaway Win) | The Liar - Nora Roberts (Giveaway Win @ Fictionzeal) |

Freebies and Giveaways: Only two! I have behaved in this area at least.


| Six Days - Randileigh Kennedy (Giveaway Win @ Little Pink Crayon) | Hollywood Dirty - MZ Kelly |

Review Copies: Quite a few I am excited to read (or have already read because it's been a while since I have done a book haul!)



  




The Terminal - Jeremy Gosnell | The Torrent - Simone Pond | Art in the Blood - Bonnie Macbird | Bounce XO - Noelle August | The Big Rewind - Libby Cudmore | Cold Feet - Amy Fitzhenry | An Inheritance of Ashes - Leah Bobet | The Zig Zag Girl - Elly Griffiths | A Night Divided - Jennifer A. Nielsen | Burn Girl  - Mandy Mikulencak | Are You Still There - Sarah Lynn Scheerger | Sapient - Jerry Kaczmarowski | For the Record - Charlotte Huang | Duet for Three Hands - Tess Thompson | This is Where it Ends -  Marieke Nijkamp | Sounds Like Me - Sara Bareilles | Komomo Confiserie - Maki Minami | Marrying Christopher - Michele Paige Holmes |

Olivia's Question: What new books have you recently acquired?

Olivia-Savannah x

Thursday, 13 August 2015

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Review)

Hi there!

Title: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Harry Potter #2)
Author: J. K. Rowling
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Published Date: July 2, 1998
Rating: 3 stars

Synopsis: Harry is tired of the summer holidays, and tired of the Dursleys. Just before the long anticipated term at Hogwarts, Harry receives a strange visitor, who tells him he must not go back to Hogwarts, because there will be great trouble for him if he does. Harry, dismayed, shocked, and surprised returns to a year of Hogwarts, and to a disaster at school. Everyone at Hogwarts is in danger of death, and the task falls to Harry to rescue the entire school, while the school believes he is the cause of the danger.

Review: After reading this book, I am not sure if I want to keep on reading Harry Potter. And now I am going to explain!

I love the characters. I think this is something J. K. Rowling does exceptionally well. Hermoine is definitely my favourite because she’s someone not everyone will like because she is such a know it all, but then again she can be a good friend as well. Then we have Ron, who is scared of nearly everything, but will really stand up for his friends when need be. And we have Harry, of course, the main character who things just seem to happen to.

This book is definitely connected to the first. Things we learned in the first book are explained, some things didn’t even need explaining. Once again, I have to say, J. K. Rowling has managed to display her creativity and write a wonderful book.

But what didn’t I like? I have noticed after reading these first two books that the books are incredibly slow paced. It took me forever to read this one, and this isn’t even a very thick book (in comparison to the future ones). It’s the fact that the mystery is building all through the story, but slowly, without any real excitement in it. All the excitement and suspense is saved until the very end and flies by in a couple of pages. If it was spread out throughout the book I am sure this read would be more enjoyable.

Another thing is the fact that Ron breaks his wand in this book. All through the story we get Harry saying it’s a shame Ron’s wand is broken, and yet Harry has an awful lot of money in the bank! He never offered any, and for me that was very frustrating. Yes, the Weasley’s may not have accepted the money because who would take from a child? But then again, at least offer it! That frustration combined with the pacing had to lower my rating.

As always this book is set in Hogwarts which becomes more and more like a school I would love to attend myself.

I rate this book 3 stars because it was good, but the slow pace brought it down for me. I am sure all ages can enjoy this book, and many already have.

Links: Goodreads and Amazon!

Olivia’s Question: Who would you like to cast a memory loss spell on?


Olivia-Savannah x

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Made You Up (Review & Giveaway!)

Hi there!

Title: Made You Up
Author:  Francesca Zappia
Publisher:  HarperCollins
Published Date:  19th May 2015
Rating: 5 Stars

*Thank you to the publisher for the review copy*

Synopsis: Reality, it turns out, is often not what you perceive it to be—sometimes, there really is someone out to get you. Made You Up tells the story of Alex, a high school senior unable to tell the difference between real life and delusion. This is a compelling and provoking literary debut that will appeal to fans of Wes Anderson, Silver Linings Playbook, and Liar.

Alex fights a daily battle to figure out the difference between reality and delusion. Armed with a take-no-prisoners attitude, her camera, a Magic 8-Ball, and her only ally (her little sister), Alex wages a war against her schizophrenia, determined to stay sane long enough to get into college. She’s pretty optimistic about her chances until classes begin, and she runs into Miles. Didn't she imagine him? Before she knows it, Alex is making friends, going to parties, falling in love, and experiencing all the usual rites of passage for teenagers. But Alex is used to being crazy. She’s not prepared for normal.

Funny, provoking, and ultimately moving, this debut novel featuring the quintessential unreliable narrator will have readers turning the pages and trying to figure out what is real and what is made up.

Review: Did I love Silver Linings Playbook? Yes. Should this one be compared to that? No. Because although they were both about mental illness, they both took a very different approach to it, and they were both very different situations.

But the most important question – did I love it?

SO MUCH YES!

First, before I tell you about how wonderful and emotional this book is, I am going to invite you to look once more at that cover which is simply a piece of art. On a book. I would compare it to the wonderful cover of A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray. It’s gorgeous.

This book is about Alex who has paranoia and schizophrenia. Although I knew what the mental illness was, and had heard the word used many a time, I didn’t really understand the capacity of having it in itself. And this book really opened my eyes to that. Alex wants to live a normal teenage life, but it can be difficult when you don’t know what is real and what isn’t. Needless to say those around her who aren’t family don’t know that she has the condition, so in public she tries especially hard to act normal.

When a book accurately portrays a mental illness
Joy @ Joyous Reads used the words ‘unreliable narrator’ when she wrote her review for this one, and I couldn’t agree more. In fact, I wasn’t even aware how unreliable of a narrator Alex was going to be. Like her, as readers we can never be entirely sure what is real and what isn’t until Alex herself knows it as well. Some of the largest plot twists were finding out things that you would never have suspected weren’t real.

And then the characters… were brilliant. I loved hearing things from Alex’s point of view, and she had such a great way with words and her mind. I loved being in her body and seeing through her eyes. She was sensible, she was smart, but then she was also human. And there was Miles – who everyone was afraid of. Everyone except Alex though – she was more so curious about who he was and why no one seemingly knew much about him. I won’t tell you anything about that of course because as you read it is best to discover it for yourself. But I love Miles. ^^

This was a book where the parents were also very present, and not off somewhere or dead, which makes me happy. Too many YA books seem to do that. And these parents weren’t perfect either – they had flaws. Which was to be expected as they had to look after a child with this condition. It was interesting to see how each parent went about dealing with Alex’s condition differently, and finding out their reasons for doing so.  

Another thing I loved so much about this was that although it was a book about mental diseases and it had great characters, it wasn’t solely based on that. It actually did have a good plot running through it as well, that came to a climax.

This book made me sympathetic to those with schizophrenia. I couldn’t imagine having it myself. It made me love the way I know what is and isn’t real – something which a lot of us take for granted. It made me question reality. I mean, what if the life you were living was a dream, and you woke up. Then what?

I could not and would not stop reading this book for anything. It made me laugh, it made me smile. If I had to point out a book that was great, this one would definitely be it. Oh, and the author started writing this meaningful novel when she was eight O.o

Links: Goodreads and Amazon!

Giveaway Time! Enter to win a hardcover copy of Made You Up! Open internationally as long as the Book Depository ships to you. 


Olivia’s Question: What would you do if you found out the life you were living wasn’t real?

Olivia-Savannah x

Saturday, 8 August 2015

Top 10: Reasons why I Love Kung Fu Panda

Hi there guys!

Time for a fun and more different kind of post than usual. I'm allowed, it's summer :3

I love everything about Kung Fu Panda. It is literally one of the most hilarious movies out there. Seeing as Jack Black is in it, I am not surprised. But here are my ten reasons why I love it.

1.      Po is my spirit animal.


2.      I hate stairs as well.


3.      I love how much food is mentioned in this movie.


4.      It teaches us that anyone can reach for their dreams.


5.      It teaches us about living our daily lives.
6.      It shows how practice and persistence can get you anywhere.


7.      It shows how friendship can develop.


8.      It shows us the importance of family, no matter how large or small.


9.      It’s funny!


10.   Skadoosh ;)


New Video! I have also returned to the booktubing world! I have a discussion video all about banned books for you...


Olivia’s Question: What animated movies have you learned a lot from?

Olivia-Savannah x