Author: Laura

Review: Stormbird by Conn Iggulden

Review: Stormbird by Conn Iggulden

‘I remember Prince Hal, William! I remember the lion! Just ten more years and he’d have had the rest of France at his feet. Henry of Monmouth was my king, no other. God knows I would follow his son, but this boy is not his father. You know it. Instead of a lion of England, we have a dear white lamb to lead us in prayer.’ Stormbird is the first in Conn Iggulden’s War of the Roses series, and is set in the reign of Henry VI – the frail, gentle son of the famous war king, Henry V, who… Read more »

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Review: The Island of Doctor Moreau by H.G. Wells

Review: The Island of Doctor Moreau by H.G. Wells

‘It may be I fancy I have seen more of the ways of this world’s Maker than you – for I have sought his laws, in my way, all my life, while you, I understand, have been collecting butterflies.’ Warning: Spoilers Considering I’m quite a fan of science-fiction (and attempting to be a science-fiction writer for NaNoWriMo!), the fact that I have never read anything by H.G. Wells before now is pretty shocking! Whilst The Time Machine and War of the Worlds are better known, I managed to pick up a copy of The Island of Doctor Moreau for 99p… Read more »

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Where My Love of Reading Began

Where My Love of Reading Began

My Mum always tells me about how as a baby I would sit for ages with my little books and hold them really close to my face and jabber away like I was actually reading them (the close to my face thing turned out to be long-sightedness – I have worn glasses since I was 3!). Even before I could read, I wanted to read, and I subsequently learnt at a pretty young age. In fact, I remember the first book I ever read from start to finish all by myself: it was a Ladybird Book of The Gingerbread Man,… Read more »

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Film Review: The Fault In Our Stars

Film Review: The Fault In Our Stars

Warning: Spoilers. As a general rule, I’m pretty sceptical about book to film adaptations: from previous experience, I very rarely like the film as much, and don’t think I’ve ever actually preferred a film. For that reason, I was a little dubious about watching the film adaptation of The Fault in Our Stars, as I absolutely adore John Green’s novel! However, I have to say, I was actually pleasantly surprised by the film! I felt that it was in most cases, very nearly as good as the book (and that is high praise indeed!), and it felt very true to… Read more »

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Review: Bring Up The Bodies by Hilary Mantel

Review: Bring Up The Bodies by Hilary Mantel

‘A gentleman asked me, if this is what Cromwell does to the cardinal’s lesser enemies, what will he do by and by to the king himself?’ Warning: Spoilers (although if you know anything about Tudor history, you will already know the ending anyway!). A little while ago I reviewed Hilary Mantel’s Man Booker Prize winning Wolf Hall, and loved it so much I gave it a 5/5! I now regret that, and not because I have decided I didn’t like the book as much as I originally thought, but because I can’t mark its sequel (and also a Man Booker… Read more »

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3 Tips to Increase Writing Productivity

3 Tips to Increase Writing Productivity

Very few writers/bloggers/authors are lucky enough to be able to write full time: many have day jobs, or have kids or other responsibilities, and have to simply fit their writing in when they can. I, for example, have recently quit my second part time job and have gone full time at my first, meaning I have considerably less time to devote to my writing. Therefore, when I do write, I like to get the most done in that time possible! So here are just a few tips and tricks I have learnt whilst trying to work out how best to use… Read more »

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Review: City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

Review: City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

‘”Oh, Clary. Oh, thank God.” A sharp prickle of alarm ran up Clary’s spine. Her mother sounded panicked. “Listen to me-“ “It’s all right, Mom. I’m fine. I’m on my way home-“ “No!” Terror scraped Jocelyn’s voice raw. “Don’t come home! Do you understand me Clary? Don’t you dare come home.’ Warning: Spoilers I know that the Mortal Instruments books are incredibly popular, but I’ll admit, I’ve been avoiding them for ages! The first I heard about them was the release of the movie trailer, and it completely put me off. It just looked so cheesy! I was further discouraged… Read more »

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Review: Wool by Hugh Howey

Review: Wool by Hugh Howey

‘’Get the mayor,’ Holston said. He let out a sigh, that heavy breath he’d been holding for three years. ‘Tell her I want to go outside.’ Warning: Minor Spoilers. Given my penchant for dystopian fiction, I had high hopes for this book, especially as the concept seemed pretty promising. It veered away from The Hunger Games/Divergent set up of a future humanity split into sections, and instead had them cooped up in a silo with a deadly wasteland of a world left outside, visible only from a window, and forbidden to speak of. Those who express an interest in the… Read more »

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What I’ve Learnt In Two Months of Blogging

What I’ve Learnt In Two Months of Blogging

The other day I realised that I have been blogging for two months! Whilst this is hardly a long time, it’s already starting to feel like I have always been dreaming up fresh blog posts and obsessively checking my blog comments and Twitter feed in my lunch break. It’s certainly been a learning curve, going from a person who is generally fairly inept with computers (I usually just shout my tech-savvy sister to help!) to someone who has successfully set up a blog, and whilst my design is pretty minimalist, it still seems like an achievement! So I decided to… Read more »

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My Top 5 Contemporary Short Stories

My Top 5 Contemporary Short Stories

Last week I shared my Top 5 Classic Short Stories, so here are my top 5 contemporary stories (and by contemporary, I’m talking later than the 70s!): Tandolfo the Great by Richard Bausch Although nothing too tragic happens in Tandolfo the Great, there is something very sad and poignant about it, which considering its exuberant title and the fact its protagonist is a clown, comes as a surprise. It tells the story of child’s entertainer Rodney, aka Tandolfo, who planned to propose to the love of his life using a huge, multi-tiered wedding cake which he has in the back of his car…. Read more »

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