Monday, 7 January 2019

New Year's Resolutions 2019

Resolutions 2019

  1. Lose at least two stone
  2. Get at least one piercing
  3. Get at least one tattoo
  4. Learn to drive
  5. Read 100 books
  6. Watch 100 films
  7. See at least 5 films at the cinema
  8. Write at least 30,000 words for NaNoWriMo
  9. Buy a tablet
  10. Get a second dog
  11. Find a new job
  12. Draw more and improve my art
Much the same as last year but condensed and simplified. I usually say I want to complete NaNoWriMo but that seems to be un-achievable at the moment so I thought I'll create goals to get closer. Normally I'd say 30k is too high but I want to get a tablet for writing because typing is quicker, the one year I typed my attempt I got to about 29k I think, I think I was a few hundred words off 30k so apparently it is doable for me. I need to continue that story at some point...

Last year I easily surpassed 5 films at the cinema but I though I'll keep the goal at 5 because I don't know what the year will bring and I want to achieve at least one goal on my list LOL! This list was compiled by looking at the Coming Soon section of the Vue cinema website. There were some films that had intriguing titles but no description or descriptions that had me thinking maybe. Those would need trailers to help any decisions.

Films I Want To See:
How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World
A Dog's Way Home
Artemis Fowl
Avengers: Endgame
Captain Marvel
Charlie's Angels
Escape Room
Frozen 2
It 2 (need to watch the first one though...)
Missing Link
Pet Sematary
Spider-man: Far From Home
The Kid Who Would Be King
The Lion King
The New Mutants
The Queen's Corgi
The Secret Life of Pets 2
The Sun Is Also A Star
Toy Story 4
What Men Want
Wonder Park
X-Men: Dark Phoenix

Other Goals
As well as my official resolutions list I have a list of 'stretch' goals I suppose you could call it that are unlikely but I would still like to achieve.

  1. Go to Longleat Safari Park
  2. Finish 'A Song of Ice and Fire' series
  3. Upload book reviews on time - at the moment I am 14 books behind and 7 of those still need reviews writing, oops.
  4. Refine my clothing style
  5. Get a Playstation 4 - mostly for the Spyro remake :D
  6. Upgrade/replace all furniture needed
  7. Get a new car
Longleat has been a dream for a few years now and even more so since I upgraded my camera - still need to learn the focus thing though, fences are a pain - and it's not too far away but it always gets shoved down the list. I don't know what happened with the SoIaF books. I started reading them, got to a Storm of Swords: Steel and Snow and then stalled. Apparently I started reading that one September 2017.

Ah book reviews. Oh dear. If it were just posting them here then I could maybe work out doing them on my phone but it's the posting on Goodreads and often NetGalley as well that make it a trickier process. I only get on the PC a few times a week thanks to work and sometimes I just forget to post as well. I will do one in a minute and post straightaway and then schedule this post for later or something. This is another area that getting a tablet may help, bigger screen to see what I'm doing and a keyboard case for typing.

Clothing style... Rainbow Goth in a nutshell. I love goth style but I also love bright colours and hippie clothing Wicked Dragon and The Hippy Clothing Co. both do the kind of things I dream of wearing, the latter in particular has some epic purple velvet tie-dye dungarees that I love! At the moment the main issue is that the sizes do not quite extend enough on most items to fit me. That is why this is a stretch goal and not a main resolution, because a lot of it rides on me losing a bit of weight, then I can wear the clothes of my dreams.

PS4 doesn't need explaining beyond Spyro being the last straw in me wanting to catch up technologically. Now furniture... Some of it is due to the dog's chewing phase (coffee table), most of it is age and being generally worn out: my bed, cooker, fridge, washing machine, sofas, carpets. It's a big job and will take a while.

And finally the car. Our little Nissan Micra is great and it's in better condition and better to handle than the old Ford Mondeo but while the Mondeo was too long, the Micra is too small and needs a bit more power in the engine, I think it's only a 1.1 or 1.2 engine verses the Mondeo which I think was something like a 1.4 or 1.6, I can't remember now.

Anyway this post is way too long but I can't be bothered to split it, will write soon!

Stef Out x

How to Write a Love Story by Katy Cannon

Ebook provided by NetGalley for review. Thank you.

The characters are truly what drives this story. Each one is uniquely well-developed, I'm writing this review a while after finishing to had to look up the names but once I did it all came flooding back and I remembered them.

I especially loved the relationship between Tilly and her gran. I felt sad for Beatrix and what was happening to her although the morals around her and Tilly's writing relationship were a bit shady.

There were also a couple of plot points that were a bit too predictable which knocked off a star. Otherwise highly enjoyable.

Stef Out x

Wednesday, 2 January 2019

2018 Resolutions Recap and Film Overview

For anyone that wants a reminder here is my post about 2018's resolutions here and film overview here. I did not do well. Out of 20 goals I achieved 2 and a half. I saw 5 films at the cinema, got a new car and lost 1 stone out of 2. Not great. I even failed my usually faithful book and film challenge. This year I did change my work hours slightly. Friday's I used to do 8 til 1 and then I'd come home and watch a film before walking the dog to meet mum from work because she was doing 11 til 5. But then we realised switching round would be better because it means mum can come home and do things like cleaning or ironing. So we did so that meant bye-bye film Friday.

I will do a post in a few days about this years resolutions, I've just got to come up with them first! Back to last year's recap. Body mods, driving and days out were affected by money. We got the new car in February but then a few months later the clutch went so that needed sorting, plus it's had two tyres done. Forest had his op in the summer as well so no pups for him. Also mum had problems with her Universal Credit stopping, basically her details got deleted when the system changed so we needed to re-set that up. We also did one for me but apparently living at home means I have no outgoings - tell that to my weeping bank account - so I'm not eligible for anything. Sucks. I haven't had the energy to look into anything job-wise so I'm still in retail hell for now. The only drawing I've done all year is two Secret Santa gifts in December. I've really struggled with motivation and concentration this year, with reading as well :( I worked out that for music to play on my phone it needs to be in MP3 format so I'm working on converting my library and I will get a larger memory card for my phone. I do still need to get a tablet for writing though and It'll make keeping up with this blog easier. I can't keep taking months to post reviews...

Now onto the film section! This year I only managed to watch 88 films. That's bad for me. Onto the breakdown:

January: 18 of which 4 were animated, 3 musicals, 3 superhero, 2 fantasy, 1 serious and 5 horror. 4 new to me.

February: 5 of which 1 was animated and 4 were fantasy. 3 new to me.

March: 7 of which 3 were animated, 1 superhero and 3 fantasy. 1 new to me.

April: April was a bad month and I watched no films. :(

May: 4 of which 2 were animated and 2 were superhero. All 4 were new to me.

June: 10 of which 4 were animated, 1 superhero, 1 musical, 1 romance, 1 animal and 2 fantasy. 4 new to me.

July: 10 of which 3 were animated, 3 animal and 4 fantasy. 2 new to me.

August: 12 of which 5 were fantasy, 3 were animated, 1 animal, 1 musical, 2 serious. 2 new to me.

September: 2 of which 1 was superhero and 1 was animated.

October: 2 of which 1 was fantasy and 1 was horror. 1 new to me.

November: 3 of which 1 animated, 1 fantasy and 1 serious. 2 new to me.

December: 15 of which 11 were animated, 3 fantasy and 1 serious. 4 new to me.

33 animated so less this year. 27 new to me films I ended up not tracking re-watches like I planned. I may for 2019, I've started a new notebook which is a little bigger and lined so it may be easier.

Total Cinema Trips: 10
I smashed my goal of watching 5 films at the cinema and went 10 times for 8 films!
The Greatest Showman x 2
Black Panther
Avengers: Infinity War
Deadpool 2
Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom
Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again x 2
Bohemian Rhapsody
Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald

I haven't yet looked at what's out next year but I think that'll come in my next post with the new resolutions themselves as this has gotten a little long.

Stef Out x

Tuesday, 11 December 2018

The Death and Life of Eleanor Parker by Kerry Wilkinson

Ebook provided by NetGalley for review. Thank you.

I loved the concept for this book, the whole waking up dead thing was fascinating! I really enjoyed that this was a teen thriller, it was like nothing I've read before.

The characters were all great and I loved all of their interactions. I really enjoyed how different suspects were hinted at and found myself second-guessing everything. The diner sounded epic! I loved the sound of the music wall and they were great about picky customers.

The only letdown was that while the reveal was great and I wouldn't have guessed who is was, the whole thing went down a little too quick. The ending on the whole was a little abrupt.

Stef Out x

Saturday, 8 December 2018

Believe Me by JP Delaney

Ebook provided by NetGalley for review. Thank you.

So twisty! It kept me guessing until the very last page and even then I was still like "What?".

Claire was a fascinating character, so intriguing and I enjoyed reading about her history. Patrick was interesting. I liked how you never knew what was true and what wasn't. I didn't really like the constant talk of the poems and what they might mean. I don't care what they mean just get on with the story.

Stef Out x

P.S. This review was written weeks if not a couple of months after reading the book. Evidently a very bad decision as it has ended up rather brief...

Wednesday, 5 December 2018

Blank by Sabrina RG Raven

Ebook provided by NetGalley for review. Thank you.

This started out as a 5, then I thought a 4 and by the end it had dropped to a 3. The ending was disappointingly open and apparently with no plans for a sequel.

The characters were a mixed bag, I liked Darnell and loved Zale but Almara was flat and under-developed, she had very little growth compared to the others. The world-building was rich and interesting and perfectly set-up for scope to expand into a series. I loved the authors take on the soulmate idea and I highly appreciated the inclusion of gay characters.

Edited to add: The author has since commented on my Goodreads review saying that there is now a sequel in the works!

Stef Out x

Tuesday, 4 December 2018

Bookshop Girl by Chloe Coles

I am so sorry I haven't updated in a while. Work has been rather busy to say the least and all reviewing/blogging motivation went out of the window. Needless to say I now have a bit of a backlog to post... 11 including this one. Whoops! Oh well on to the review!

Ebook provided by NetGalley for review. Thank you.

Paige is awesome! I loved her go-getter attitude and her unwillingness to let things slide. Her friendship with Holly was fab, I loved the way they supported each other and even the one blip they had was minor.

I loved the characters in the life-drawing class, especially Sue, she was a hoot and a great support to the girls! It was obvious fairly quickly that Blaine was not a good guy but it was great seeing him get his comeuppance. My main criticism was that the book seemed very short.

Stef Out x