Monthly Archives

November 2013

Book Reviews, Books, Fantasy, Young Adult

Darkness Watching – Emma L. Adams | Book review*

November 30, 2013
Darkness Watching - Emma L Adams

This review is spoiler free.

It’s been a while since I’ve reviewed a book but I’ve been stealing every spare minute to finish Darkness Watching. 

Here’s the description from Goodreads:

“Eighteen-year-old Ashlyn is one interview away from her future when she first sees the demons. She thinks she’s losing her mind, but the truth is far more frightening: she can see into the Darkworld, the home of spirits- and the darkness is staring back.

Desperate to escape the demons, Ash accepts a place at a university in the small town of Blackstone, in the middle of nowhere – little knowing that it isn’t coincidence that led her there but the pull of the Venantium, the sorcerers who maintain the barrier keeping demons from crossing from the Darkworld into our own world.

All-night parties, new friendships and a life without rules or limits are all part of the package of student life – but demons still stalk Ash, and their interest in her has attracted the attention of every sorcerer in the area. Ash is soon caught between her new life and a group of other students with a connection to the Darkworld, who could offer the answers she’s looking for. The demons want something from her, and someone is determined to kill her before she can find out what it is. In a world where darkness lurks beneath the surface, not everyone is what they appear to be…”

I really enjoyed Darkness Watching and I think if I’d had more spare time I’d have finished it in three or four nights.

In all honesty I’ve never read anything about demons before (because they scare me) but I really loved this book.

Ashlyn was a really likeable person and her super studious ways at the start of the book reminded me a lot of my best friend. Aside from being able to do magic and see demons it was easy to relate to her fears about getting into university, starting university and boy issues.

The other characters weren’t explored as much as I’d hoped but hopefully we’ll find out more about them in the next book.

The way the town was described in the book sucked me in and I had no trouble imagining it, in fact it reminded me a lot of Keele.

Darkness Watching had quite a few nice twists and turns in it and the decisions and reasoning behind things made sense and it didn’t try to baffle the reader with complicated explanations.

I wasn’t at all surprised by the guy who turned out to be ‘the bad guy’ though, I saw that coming a mile off. Aside from that though I didn’t find Darkness Watching to be predictable.

Something that really interested me was the way the author portrayed demons. In my head they were evil looking people with red eyes so the way they’re portrayed in Darkness Watching makes them seem a little friendlier than I’ve always imagined as their eye colour happens to be my favourite colour.

I also really enjoyed that it was set in England which meant I get the education system. I’ve read so many books using the US education system and I still don’t get it, (do you go to college or university? Are they the same thing or does one come before the other?) so it was nice to just be able to read Darkness Watching without having to think about. I’m sure that’s not really a major selling point for anyone but it was genuinely something I liked about it.

The ending felt quite abrupt and sudden, which left me wanting more so I’ll definitely pick up the second book to find out what happens to Ashlyn next.

Darkness Watching is an enjoyable and exciting read about magic and demons that leaves you doing a second take at any ‘dark spaces’ in your house searching them for violet eyes.

If you’re looking for an interesting book about magic and demons, I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Darkness Watching.

*I was provided with a copy from NetGalley in return for an honest review.

4 out of 5

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How to style black combat boots

November 29, 2013

Black boots are a staple part of my wardrobe, they’re perfect for so many occasions and I really couldn’t be without them now. 

I’ve put together a collection showing a few different ways you can style your black combat boots.

Black Boots - Casual

Black Boots – Casual by quellesurpreyes featuring Uniqlo

The safe option is just to pair them with a pair of jeans and a shirt and go for the casual look, but you can do so much more if you fancy being a bit daring.

Black combat boots, leggings and tops

Black combat boots, leggings and tops by quellesurpreyes featuring long sleeve sweaters

Not exactly the ‘daring’ I was talking about, but this is to show that you really can pair your black combat boots with any style of top, bralet, jumper or shirt.

Black combat boots - dressy

Black combat boots – dressy by quellesurpreyes featuring buckle purses

Wear your black boots with your favourite dress to put a slightly ‘grunge’ or ‘punk’ twist on your outfit.

Dressy punk - Black combat boots

Dressy punk – Black combat boots by quellesurpreyes featuring a reverse dress

My inspiration for this look was Avril Lavigne’s ‘punk’ image, I especially love the tartan dress and combat boots combination.

Earlier this year I went as a guest to a prom for the school my Mum works for and a girl work a pale pink dress like the black one with studs and wore a pair of converse and it looked really good and I think it’d look just as good if you switched them out for boots.

Going out - black combat boots

This is my suggestion for an evening out and is something I might wear out, if I did in fact go on nights out.

The combinations for your combat boots really are endless and you shouldn’t be afraid of mixing something up and trying something new.

The sets were all put together using Polyvore, you can see my profile here. (If anyone could tell me how to change my username on there, that’d be ace as I’m stuck with an old blog name).

How do you style your combat boots? Also, what do you think of my fashion post? Is it something you’d like to see more of?

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NaNoWriMo, Writing

I won NaNoWriMo!

November 29, 2013


Just a quick update to tell you that I’ve ‘won’ NaNoWriMo! 

I actually hit the 50,000 word count about two weeks ago and in all honesty since hitting that number I’ve barely written.

I don’t know if it’s because I no longer had incentive or whether it’s because I knew I’d reached my goal and let more important things take over. Either way, I’m not particularly happy about my lack of writing.

I intend on finishing my novel, as it stands I’m probably just over half way through so there’s certainly many more words to come.

How did you get on with NaNoWriMo?

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Life, Writing

My name in print…kinda

November 26, 2013

I’m in an ezine! 

Some of you may know I also write about Formula One for a couple of websites and over the weekend one of my articles was published in the Grand Prix Plus ezine.

While I was at the Italian Grand Prix I organised an interview with one of the drivers physiotherapists and had a chat with him about fitness in F1.

After many hours of typing I sent it off to a journalist I met at the British Grand Prix and as a result it ended up in the Brazilian Grand Prix edition of Grand Prix Plus.

Unfortunately I can’t send you a link to the article because the magazine is subscription only but I can tell you I’m feeling pretty giddy about seeing my work in something that’s paid for.

I’ve written plenty of articles for websites but being in an paid ezine to me suggests much higher standards and is something I can begin building a portfolio with.

In terms of writing, this year has been unbelievable for me. If someone had told me when I first set up my F1 blog three years ago that I’d be writing for websites, going to races, interviewing drivers, watching a practice session from a team garage and having my work in a paid publication, I’d have called you crazy.

I’m very grateful for the opportunities I’ve been given and intend to make the best of them.

If there’s a moral to this story, or something that you can take away from it whatever your goal is, it’s this: don’t give up.

Yeah it’s cheesy and it’s been said a thousand times before but I’ve thought about quitting more times than I care to think about but there’s this little burning ‘what if’ inside me that keeps me going when I’m wondering why I’ve not really had a break over the weekend or when I think it’s too hard.

What keeps you going?

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Humour, Life, Music

Exercise makes me a musical hypocrite

November 26, 2013

Britney Spears - Work B**tch

My music taste is fairly varied, it goes from heavy metal to country to pop. When I exercise though I end up listening to music I bitch and moan about the rest of the time. 

If I say I don’t like a song you can bet I listen to it at the gym. Recently I was moaning about Work Bitch by Britney Spears, so of course it only makes sense that it’s on my gym playlist.

I don’t know what it is about exercise that makes me ignore all my bitching and moaning but it just makes me gravitate towards songs I ‘don’t like’. Thankfully I’ve not started to listen to Coldplay yet.

Some highlights of my gym playlist are:

  • Work Bitch – Britney Spears
  • Pokerface – Lady Gaga
  • DNA – Little Mix
  • Wrecking Ball – Miley Cyrus (sorry, not sorry)
  • Bad Girl – Avril Lavigne. (I am an Avril fan but this song is creepy and weird)

With the news that Busted and McFly are forming a bit of a super group, I’m concerned that I’ll start listening to Busted and McFly at the gym. If I do, someone please send help.

Does exercise make your music taste suck too?

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Beauty, Beauty Reviews, Skincare

Montagne Jeunesse Super Fruit Mud Mask | Review

November 25, 2013

Montagne Jeunesse Super Fruit Mud Mask


Over the weekend I was dragged into doing DIY and decided to spare my face being covered in paint I’d whack on a face mask. Really. 

I picked up a handful of Montagne Jeunesse face masks over the weekend and chose their Super Fruit Mud Mask for my DIY capers.

This mask contains pomegranate and goji berry and says it will ‘cleanse and nourish pores to the core’. It smells lovely and there’s plenty in the packet to apply a thick layer all over your face.

For the first five minutes it felt very tingly, which always worries me as I once tried a face mask (I can’t remember which brand) and I had to take it off after two minutes because it made my eyes stream, so I wondered if my face didn’t like this one either. Thankfully it went off after the mask had started to dry.

As soon as I removed the mask I could feel the difference, my skin felt so soft and I had a few blackheads before (boohoo, first time ever) and it seems to have  got rid of some of  those also which makes me super happy.

The packet recommends using it once a week for best results but they make so many face masks I love using that I just can’t possibly be loyal to one of their masks and there’s no chance I’d ever remember to use it once a week.

If you want to give your pores a nice deep clean, I highly recommend Montagne Jeunesse’s Super Fruit Mud Mask. You can pick up most of their face masks for £1 (some are more) from places like Boots and ASDA.

Do you use face masks?

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