Dear Books,

Dear Books,

I love you.

I don’t say those words lightly. Usually you would at least need to buy me dinner. But it’s true. I love you.

You provide me with hours of entertainment. You drown out the world.

I need you.

I don’t know when my obsession with you began. You’ve always been there. 

No matter how hard life gets, no matter how much I can’t handle it, I know you’ll be there with a new world, a new love interest, a new story, for me to sink my teeth into.

10 words.

Short.

Confusing.

Battlefield.

Mundane.

Depressing.

***

Glorious.

Adventure.

Amazing.

Joyous.

Unpredictable.

These 10 words describe something. Something that a lot of us take for granted. It relates to every single one of us, yet all our experiences of it differ to the extreme. We need it. We get frustrated with it, but it’s ours. That’s what makes it all the more special.

So what is it?

***

If you don’t forget to follow me on social media, I won’t forget to post on Tuesday…

I’m planning a hypothetical holiday. 

Why “hypothetical”, you ask?

Because that’s just what I do.

I’m the type of person who needs to think things through…thoroughly…probably, in some cases, too thoroughly…

By planning a hypothetical holiday, by the time everything is planned, I will have a holiday in the palm of my hand that I don’t have to commit to, but if I only book it, it could be all mine.

I could go in 3 weeks, I could go in 3 years.

So… I’m planning a hypothetical holiday. And it’s thrilling!

I own too many books. 

… Said no booklover ever.

My bookshelves are overflowing, but I can’t seem to stop buying them. I have 4 bookshelves in my house. Each holds quite a large amount of books, and still I have no room.

What is it about a book that says “buy me”?

Just this weekend I bought at least six books.

I’m not even a fast reader.

The other day I read an article about how many books we can realistically read before we die – a morbid thought, but one that hit home.

Apparently I am going to be able to read about 3000 books with the time I have left. I haven’t counted lately, but I think I am close to closing in on that number of unread books at home.

That means that, if I keep buying books at this rate, I am never going to read all of the books I own.

How depressing.

Somehow, this has not deterred me. It has not slowed me down with my book buying or made me consider getting rid of any of the books I already own.

I’m not sure that it should.

For me, books are not just an entertainment thing. They’re a calming instrument. Put me in a room with books and I instantly feel a little bit calmer. Plus they look pretty and make me look smarter than I am.

I think I own too many books.

But I’ll let you in on a secret…

I. Don’t. Care.

I didn’t post last Tuesday.

I didn’t post last Tuesday.

I’m sorry.

With the reintroduction of 11 hour work days after the Easter period, and next to no sleep, my body was not feeling great. Thus I decided to cancel the last post.

It’s Saturday now, though, and I am very much back into the swing of things.

I thought, today, I would give you a book review. I read it about two weeks ago. It’s called Read Me Like a Book.

Author: Liz Kessler
Year: 2015
Pages: 304
Genre: LGBTQ+

Read Me Like a Book follows Ashleigh Walker, a young high school student who could not care less about school. She hates class, the teachers and the subjects. She doesn’t see why she has to be there, or what the point of it all is.

She meets her dream guy at a party – Dylan – who makes her nervous and seems to actually want to talk to her. They start dating, and life is great, though he wants to go a lot further with her than she’s comfortable with.

And then her English teacher leaves, and she gets a temporary replacement – Miss Murray – who has this thing about her that sucks Ashleigh in. Ashleigh starts caring about English and her grades, and suddenly Dylan seems less important.

But is Ashleigh’s like of Miss Murray more than she originally thinks?

This book had me captivated from the start. It had controversy and intrigue attached to it. It was enthralling.

Miss Murray is a thoroughly likeable woman whose passion for English and literature I saw mirrored in myself, though I question her morals quite a bit.

The controversial relationship between Miss Murray and Ashleigh plays on readers minds in a will the, won’t they sense until the novel reaches it’s pinnacle.

If you love a book that provides food for thought, I would recommend this one.

***

See you Tuesday!

The Meaning of Life.

I rifle through paper after paper
Trying to make sense of a life
I have never remotely understood
How? Why? When? Where?

How am I meant to know?
Why does it have to be that way?
When is the right time?
Where do we go from here?

Adults utter words like
“You’ll know when you’re older”
So we wish with all our might
We were just that right now

Then we get there
And we’re none the wiser
The intricacies of life
Are just secret as before

The thing that we learn
The thing parents refer to
Is not some secret for adults
It’s a realisation:

No one knows what they’re doing
They don’t know the how
Or the why, when
Or even the where

We all stumble blindly
Hoping for satisfaction
A blissful answer to that
time when we first thought:

How am I meant to know?
Why does it have to be that way?
When is the right time?
Where do we go from here?

***

I’ll see you Saturday.
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Review: ‘Lola and the Boy Next Door’

I am not pretending that this isn’t a cheat’s post. I know it is. But I haven’t had the time to write a proper one today. I apologise. But I thought that I would give you a review of one of the books that I have read recently.

Title: Lola and the Boy Next Door
Author: Stephanie Perkins

This book is the second in the Anna and the French Kiss series. It’s young adult, it’s easy to read, and it’s a feel-good book.

When I first started reading this book, I was sceptical. I had loved the first one, and I was wary that this one would fall short of my expectations. But I was surprised. I ended up loving it.

Lola is the girl who dresses strangely. She wears bright wigs and clothes to express herself, and she has a flare for it. She’s always dreamed of walking into her school dance in a dress that Marie Antoinette would swoon over. She has an older rockstar boyfriend and, apart from her dads not approving of her choice of boyfriend, her life is pretty ok.

Cricket lives next door. He’s spent his entire life living under his twin sister’s wing. He’s always loved Lola from afar. When he moves back to town, he thinks it’s a sign to finally make his move, but the one thing he doesn’t account for is the possibility of Lola already being taken.

This story is heart-warming and heartfelt. It left me wanting more, and desperately wanting Cricket and Lola to finally get together (what can I say? I’m a softie). If you love a good, innocent love story in Young Adult form, definitely give this one a shot. It’s worth it. Trust me.

***

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Dear Drivers

Dear Drivers,

I spent most of the weekend driving. I drove at least 1090 kilometres (676 miles) over the weekend. I averaged about 272 kilometres (196 miles). That’s a very long way in my book; I don’t know about yours. By the time I got home yesterday and stopped concentrating, I was half asleep and yawning every five seconds.

For the most part, I enjoyed driving with you, but there were exceptions.

When I first started driving, I was a bit older than most. Here, we get out learner’s permit at sixteen years old. I was nineteen. This is not because I didn’t have the opportunity to get my learner’s permit. I just didn’t want it. In hindsight, I probably should have just got my licence when I first had the chance, but somehow, I don’t think I would have been ready.

I’m a pretty nervous person, so getting my learner’s permit at sixteen, when I had a lot of other things to worry about and consider, probably would have made me flip out. That’s probably not something that should happen when you are in control of a vehicle travelling at high speeds … Whereas, when I was nineteen, I had mellowed and I finally felt ready to take that next step toward maturing.

I think when you are sixteen, you are so ready to grow up and say goodbye to childhood, that you jump into driving with next to no serious design in learning. Then when you are put behind the wheel of a car, supervised by a licenced adult, and you have to try your best not to be the cause of racking up a buttload of car repair and medical bills, your teenage brain kind of sobers.

Now that I am fully licenced, I see it more and more. Kids on their learner’s permit, sitting in the driver’s seat beside their parents, looking absolutely petrified. Not so scared that they might, in a panic, run headfirst into a wall, but the kind of petrified that looks as though they have realised they haven’t quite thought the decision to start driving through.

And how tiring is driving when you first start? I mean, I could have had external factors making me so tired when I was first learning, but I found that I was desperate for a nap soon after every drive I had. Now, though, I am used to it, though the concentration that driving demands still slowly sucks the vitality from me. That’s what driving breaks are for!

In short, I have been known to love a good drive; usually a long one. And, perhaps, others may have been right in saying that I was unwise to refuse to get my licence for so long, but … I don’t regret it. I have more than made up for it. And I almost like it now.

***

See you Saturday, and don’t forget to follow me on social media!

If my life were a TV show…

If my life were a TV show, it would be incredibly boring. I’m one of those people that works….all the time. If I’m not actually at work, then I am writing, which is additional work. On top of that, I am socially awkward and try to avoid those uncomfortable moments that go along with being awkwardly inclined by avoiding social situations entirely….unless it is a one-on-one social event.

No one would watch the TV show of my life, except me, probably.

In saying that, I’m not unhappy with the life I have. I have a lot to be proud of!

But let us dream that, somehow, we could implant ourselves into a TV show. Which life would you choose? Think hard.

I mean, would it not be cool to fight monsters with Sam and Dean? Would it not be amazing to assist Temperance Brennan in her forensically anthropological feats? What about hearing McDreamy say “It’s a beautiful night to save lives. Let’s have some fun”?

How would you fit into that TV world? Who would you be? Protagonist? Antagonist? Major character? Minor character? How do you choose?

Some of you may be thinking what I am currently thinking: Sarah, it’s hard enough choosing who you’re going to be in the real world without adding a fictional world to the mix! This is true. I apologise, but just go with me on this one.

I don’t really know which world I’d like to live in. I’m a big fan of Supernatural, but I don’t think I’d necessarily think I’d like to live there – I’d probably end up murdered by a demon, or something.

I think Stars Hollow would be a nice place to live, but I feel like I am too similar to Rory – there’s not room for 2 Rory Gilmores in Stars Hollow.

If I could choose to actually be a character, I would probably go for the grandma in Downton Abbey played by Dame Maggie Smith. She’s badass all round. But, I mean, which character played by Dame Maggie Smith isn’t?

It’s interesting, when I began writing this, I had it my mind that it would be awesome to be able to transport yourself to your favourite fictional universe, but as I wrote my mind progressively thought the opposite. How do you choose just one? And what is it about that one place that makes you certain that that world is the world for you?

And thus, I leave you with this:

If my life were a TV show, it wouldn’t be a TV show.

***

This one was my go at bit of free writing.

See you Tuesday!


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Dear Illness,

Dear Illness,

Why must you be so cumbersome? Why, when you are something as trivial as a cold, must you make me feel like I have taken multiple blows to the head?

Though you come in many shapes, forms, and varieties, you insist on incapacitating us in one way or another. I mean, my brain is barely functioning right now because of you.

Doctors work so hard to eradicate you – from fungal infection to cancer – and you just keep re-shaping and re-building yourself so that you can squeeze through the cracks in the walls that the doctors desperately erect to keep you out. You’re horrific.

You take people from us. People that we love so dearly it hurts. How do you live with what you have done? Does the guilt not eat at you until you are Swiss cheese?

Of course, you don’t have feelings, do you? You can’t feel guilt or sympathy. You have no concept of right or wrong. I hate you for it.

Sometimes we don’t even know you’re around until it’s too late. You lie beneath the floorboards until we’re standing right above you, and in a flurry of weaponry and uncontrollable limbs, we end up on our backs, nursing our wounds and wondering how the universe could put us in such a situation.

You are tragedy wrapped inside a bomb. We don’t know when you’re going to explode, we don’t know if you’re going to explode, but you stand before us threateningly with your finger on the button.

I hate you.

There will be a time when I overpower you … at least, for the time being.

But how can I guarantee that you won’t transform yourself and come back for me?

***

Happy Tuesday everyone! Hoping that you aren’t riddled with cold like I am. It’s quite jarring having a cold in the middle of summer…

I’ll see you Saturday, hopefully feeling a lot better.

In the meantime, please follow me on social media.

much love xx