Thursday, 28 August 2014

Me Before You By Jojo Moyes

Lou Clark has a small life. Her entire existence takes place in a small village, centred around her family, her boyfriend and her enjoyably consistent job working in a cafe. Lou Clark is a girl with small dreams, that is until she meets Will Traynor. Will Traynor had a big life. A big life in a big city with weekends indulging in exciting and big adventures, that is until an accident with a motorbike rendered him wheelchair bound and robbed him of his desire to live. When Lou loses her cafe job and takes up an offer to look after Will as a carer, the small lives of two very different people will never be the same again.

This is a small book with a big heart and a story line that not only touches on the lives of two people, but one that makes the reader question what it means to live for yourself and to live a life of worth. Although that may make this book sound like a heavy read, it's not. It's light and funny but also sweet and sad. A poignant story that left me thinking about the lives of the two people who fill up its pages long after I had finished reading it.


Thursday, 21 August 2014

The Beauty Shelf: New Additions

A Thursday night shopping trip is rarely complete for me without stalking the aisles of my local pharmacy in search of new beauty and skincare finds sans giving my credit card a heart attack. Here is what I have been loving lately:

Rimmel Scandaleyes Eyeshadow Stick in Bulletproof Beige. I already have one of these in Bad Girl Bronze and they really are the easiest thing in the world to use. I'm down with anything that is as easy as applying crayola to the face. This champagney colour is perfect for placing in the corners of the eye for a quick perk-me-up look and takes just seconds to apply to the lid. Foolproof while still looking like you've made the effort.

Rimmel Lasting Finish Lipstick By Kate #19 and Rimmel Lasting Finish Lipstick in Coral in Gold. Some lipsticks leave me with sore chapped lips and a dark line around them due to whatever toxic nastys are hiding inside. So, when I found a lippy that ticked all the moisturising/colour goodness boxes and didn't leave me looking like a 90210 castmember the next day I got a tad excited. By Kate #19 is a beautiful everyday pink while Coral in Gold is a sheer orange with streaks of gold throughout. Glamourous and summery this is going to be my go-to for summer nights.

La Roche Posay Melt in Cream 50+. Im desperately in need of a summer moisturiser that doesn't leave me with breakouts and a greasy face by lunchtime. Perfect for upcoming holidays where sunprotection and minimal makeup are essential.

La Roche Posay Thermal Spring Water. Ive been using this in place of a toner for a while and it is so deliciously refreshing on freshly cleansed skin. Although I will be adding a toner into the mix, in the meantime a quick mist of thermal spring water leaves my skin feeling calm and looking less red in appearance after my makeup has been removed. Despite my boyfriends laughter at paying for 'fancy water' I think this is a keeper!

Bourjois Healthy Balance Unifying Powder. A mattifying powder perfect for greasy face days and also doubles as a cute as can be compact for my handbag.

KMS California Free Shape Quick Blow Dry Spray. For anyone who knows how time consuming blow drying thick hair can be, this spray is a real saver in the morning. It has literally cut my blow drying time down by about ten minutes, acts as a heat protector at the same time and leaves my hair looking silky and shiny without any added weight. I was going to look at the Moroccan Oil heat protector spray but with its added quickening properties I needn't bother!

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Authors to Note: Dennis Lehane

Welcome to a new series where I will introduce one of my favourite authors every month and talk about my favourite picks of their books to check out. Whenever I read a great book I always like to see what other offerings that author has written as well and because of this habit I have so many great authors to mention that hopefully will inspire you the next time you need some reading inspiration.

Many people are probably familiar with the movies Dennis Lehane's novels have been made into, including Gone Baby Gone, Mystic River and Shutter Island (and if you haven't definitely watch them as they are all brilliant in their own right) but may not known that all of those titles were actually novels before they were adapted to the big screen.

Lehane's take on crime/thriller fiction is dark and gritty with utterly realistic characters and unpredictable plots that will have you guessing and reguessing all the way along. From psychological thrillers to detective stories his novels often head into dark and uncomfortable territories that will have you on the edge of your seat and firmly chewing your fingernails. I'm not a big fan of scary horror-like crime/thriller novels but Lehane's novels have just the right amount of creep to them without making you want to sleep all night with the light on. For every crime book that has finished with a let-down, a predictable plot or a nicely stitched up story line, Lehane's novels are much more sophisticated than that, but it's the so-real it's depressing characters and neighbourhoods they inhabit that really bring his stories to life.

It was actually Lehane's foray into a different genre that had me hooked on his books to begin with (and also suprised that he was the same author behind Shutter Island). The Given Day has firmly earned its place as one of my favourite historical novels. The novel set amongst the unionising working classes of Boston in 1919 is a far-cry from his previous books subject matter but one that still had me glued to its pages.

If you are a fan of the movie versions or just looking for a gripping novel Lehane's books will not leave you disappointed. Have you read anything by Dennis Lehane?
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