List Love – Ten Authors

You may have seen by now that I like lists. Perhaps not as much as Bee from Vivatramp does, but I still like lists a lot.  I’ve recently been thinking about including a weekly list feature on my blog (not including my separate ο»ΏBucket List feature, and today I decided I’d start it!
The first in this series is about my top ten favourite authors. These are the writers that keep me coming back for more… (I’m also including a suggestions section, telling you the books I think are their best)
Agatha Christie. I’ve mentioned this love before – her books, tv shows, films – everything about her I will watch or read. I adore her books because even though many were written as long as eighty to ninety years ago, she still has such a wide readership, young and old. Her mysteries keep me on the edge of my seat, and some of her books I’ve re-read four or five times.
Suggestions: The Murder of Roger Ackroyd, Murder On The Orient Express, Cat Among The Pigeons
Cecelia Ahern. I love Cecelia because her books are chick-lit, but with a difference. She includes all the elements of chick lit in her novels, but adds something a little different and sometimes quite peculiar to her stories.
Suggestions: If You Could See Me Now, Where Rainbows End
Lee Child. This author is on my list purely because of my boyfriend. I’d never heard of Child before meeting Steve and I doubt I would have discovered his work for myself – however, I am glad to have been introduced to his work as he is definitely one of the finest writers I have ever had the pleasure to read.
Suggestions: Echo Burning, Killing Floor
Martina Cole. I never used to be a fan of Martina Cole when I was younger, but as I’ve matured, I’ve grown to appreciate her work. My Aunt is a massive Cole fan and always passes on her copies to me, which has led to my love affair with this woman. Her hard-hitting and often violent novels may not appeal to all but Cole is definitely one of the best novelists of the past twenty years.
Suggestions: Hard Girls, Close, Goodnight Lady
Roald Dahl. Here’s where my inner child appears. Dahl’s stories are often dark and completely loopy, but there is a certain charm about his books which enthral his readers, myself included. The stories keep you both entertained and in awe and I remember making my Mum buy me every Dahl book she could find when I was younger – definitely obsessed.
Suggestions: The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar and Six More, Matilda, The BFG
Lindsey Kelk. One of the best authors to emerge over the past few years, Lindsey keeps me entertained with her wonderful stories and sense of humour.  Her books may not be hard-hitting Tolstoy, but her own brand of chick-lit is entertaining and fresh.
Suggestions: The I Heart series
Dan Brown. Simply put, one of the finest authors of the decade. Each time I start a book of his, I cannot put it down until I have read it all – each one keeps me gripped and wanting to know what happens next now. Although the films aren’t necessarily completely true to the novels, they’re also a great sideline – read his novels, watch the movies – you won’t regret it.
Suggestions: The Da Vinci Code, Digital Fortress
Sophie Kinsella. Possibly my favourite discovery of the past ten years, Sophie’s books are unoffensive and happy – something that most authors fail to achieve. Chick-lit at its best.
Suggestions: Can You Keep A Secret?, The Undomestic Goddess
Jacqueline Wilson. Another childhood favourite. Although the stories often seemed very strange compared to real life, strangely Jacqueline’s books also portrayed real life very well. I used to love The Illustrated Mum and Double Act for the real-life issues they portrayed that other children’s authors wouldn’t dare to or dream of writing about. Plus, the illustrations by Nick Sharratt were always fantastic!
Suggestions: The Illustrated Mum, Double Act, Girls In Love series
Kate Morton. A fairly recent discovery of mine, Morton brings you novels that really draw you in. Each time I read a story by her, I feel like I’m there with her characters, experiencing what they themselves are going through and feeling what they feel. It is very rare to find an author nowadays that can provoke such an emotive response from me, and I love her for this fact.
Suggestions: The House At Riverton, The Distant Hours
EDIT: Just realised I’d left J.K Rowling off the list – how could I?
So make this a list of my top 11 authors instead, aha!
Who are your favourite authors? I always like new reading material and being introduced to new work – so leave your suggestions below!
πŸ™‚
xo

Homemaking

Whilst I was away, I picked up a few bits and pieces. I’m actually quite shocked to realise I didn’t actually purchase that much, considering the amount of places I visited. Numerous charity shop trawls and a walk through Rye seemed to deliver nothing except some charming little coasters with Shakespearean quotes printed on them – which, typical me, I left down at our caravan in Camber Sands.
However, I did pick up a few things from Boots, Superdrug and the Florence & Fred range at Tesco – so enjoy.
You may wonder why I called this post ‘Homemaking‘. That would be because of this beautiful little diary I picked up in Boots – it’s perfect for all girls and women interested in a range of things from cookery to housekeeping to gardening. This little book is jam-packed full of recipes, household tips, maps, useful websites etcetera (including some great fashion & beauty sites) plus there is also plenty of space to write birthdays, anniversaries, expenses, addresses, notes – there’s even a party checklist and a Christmas checklist – this little diary will definitely keep you organised, and with a baby on the way, I’m definitely going to need this to remember everything!
My mum also picked up a few things whilst in Boots, taking advantage of the 3 for 2 offer on gifts, and bought a Loveheart perfume and lipbalm set and another sweet-inspired lipbalm set. Not needing about seven lipbalms, she gave me the two pictured above – Toffee Kisses and one of the Loveheart balms- I can’t wait to try them!
Now, with me receiving the two lip balms above and already having plenty of lip products in my makeup stash, you may wonder why I bought yet another tin of Vaseline. It is true – I didn’t really need it – however, I’m sure to hit pan on another tin in the not so distant future, and when Superdrug are offering 50 points on your Beautycard for buying 1 tin of Vaseline – I’d be a fool not to take up the offer!
Finally, and perhaps my most favourite purchase of all – the baby booties. These cost me Β£5 from the F+F range at Tesco, and I just couldn’t resist them. They were the only shoes that seemed appropriate for either a boy or a girl, and I just had to have them – what do you think of them? Aren’t they just the cutest little things ever?
Have you bought any nice things recently? Leave me a link to your hauls – I’d love to see them!
xo
ο»Ώ

Why I Love Gisele Scanlon

Gisele Scanlon, I hear you cry? & I’ll answer yes. I know that most of you probably haven’t heard of her, except possibly Fee over at Makeup Savvy who is a serious fan of her books, & wrote a review of ‘The Goddess Experience’ here.
Gisele, simply put, is the woman I aspire to be. Her books fill me with so much inspiration and joy that I feel myself wanting to rush off to Paris to get some macarons from the Laduree bakery, or to interview some amazing people such as Vivienne Westwood. Each page leaves me smiling, and the illustrations drawn by Gisele herself make each page seem all the more personal.
I adore her books because she mixes a bit of fashion, a bit of beauty, some travel, some home, some food & stirs them all up to create something absolutely beautiful. What’s even better is that her website also showcases the best in fashion, beauty & everything else, I think I’m slightly addicted to it – find it here πŸ™‚
The main reason I’m telling you all this is because I think that everyone should own copies of these books, they’re inspiring & a great gift for any girl who is interested in pretty much anything. Also, Gisele tweeted me back πŸ˜€

Also, these books are basically like all the blogs you love to read, all mixed together into a gorgeous little book <3

If you don’t own a copy of either book, BUY THEM NOW. 
My slightly battered copy of The Goddess Guide, picked up in River Island a couple of years ago by a curious teenage girl πŸ™‚
The gorgeous cover lurking under the dust-jacket of The Goddess Experience. Book is worth it just for this cover <3
Closeup of The Goddess Experience’s cover
ο»ΏA recurring theme, especially in The Goddess Experience, is happiness.
So, on that note….
What makes you happy?
xo
ο»Ώ

Book Fiend

Yes, you read that right. In a way to boost my Boots points and treat myself, I had a good old splurge on Play.com the other day. I browsed through tonnes of CD’s, DVD’s and the like, yet nothing caught my eye. Then I noticed there was a book clearance, and oh my, did I spend, spend, spend!

I am going on holiday at the end of this month, so I definitely needed some new reading material, however when I’ve already got a pile so high it reaches my knee to read, it probably wasn’t a wise idea to buy as many as I did.

Add to that the fact that I won Lady of Quality and Arabella by Georgette Heyer from Alex’s blog giveaway at Odd Socks and Pretty Frocks and I certainly have a decent enough pile to read.

I have always been a reader, however, recently, I have found my time to read depleted by working, being ill, housework and actually spending time with my family and friends. Not to mention blogging.

I am also one of these people who have phases. I will read constantly for  a whole week, and get through three or four books, and then it will take me a month to finish the next one.

So I bet you are all wondering what I’ve been buying? Well, here goes…

*Following on from winning Alex’s blog giveaway, one of the books that another blogger won really stood out to me. It’s called Class and its by Jane Beaton, and is about a teacher who moves to a new school in Cornwall, and the effects this has on her relationship. Not to mention there’s a very dishy teacher at the boys school up the road πŸ˜‰
*Being an avid moneysavingexpert.com visitor, I invested in two of Martin Lewis’ books. Yes, trying to save money is not going to be helped by a book splurge, but I was treating myself, so nuh :p
I bought Thrifty Ways for Modern Days and The Money Diet.
*Sticking with the thrift theme, I also bought The Thrift Book by India Knight. I have read this before having borrowed it from the library (oh, how I love libraries!) , however I wanted my own copy.
*Two collections of short stories by some of the most talented authors around, Big Night Out and Girls Night In. Featuring Marian Keyes, Candace Bushnell (author of Sex & The City) and the ever-glamourous Joan Collins, I can’t wait to delve into these!
*The Wonderful World of Henry Sugar and other stories- Simply put, the story of Henry Sugar captivated me as a child and I think Roald Dahl was one of the best authors to ever put pen to paper πŸ™‚ His imagination is unparallel to none!
*Finally, two Mary Westmacott collections. That name may be unfamiliar to you, but if you are an Agatha Christie fan, you would know that Mary was her pen name for her selection of romantic stories. I have searched high and low for these collections for many years, and finally finding them on Play, I had to snap them up!

So, these are going to keep me going. Whats in your pile of summer reads?

For now,

xo

Charity Shop Finds!

Hi there, everyone!
Sorry I haven’t posted for a few days, a few things have been going on in my life that needed sorting out.
Anyway, today I got paid! RESULT! So I decided to visit the local charity shops and see what I could find.

To be honest, there wasn’t much around to be honest. I bought two books, ‘The Interpretation of Murder’ by Jed Rubenfield, a book set in Manhattan in 1909 (looks pretty interesting!), and ‘A Woman’s Courage’ by Jacqueline Gold, the woman who began the Ann Summers chain. This definitely looks like it could be an interesting read and I can’t wait to start reading it.

However, my favourite buy of the day was a scarf I found in Scope for Β£2. I’ve been wearing it down the pub tonight, and quite a few people complimented me on it. It looks pretty expensive, but I’ve only just noticed that its from Primark! Its absolutely gorgeous though!

How gorgeous is the print on this scarf though?

I fell in love with this as soon as I saw it! I know that considering the scarfs from Primark, that it may have cost little more than what I paid in the charity shop, however I had to have it when I saw it – so I did!!

Sorry about the picture, please excuse the fact that I had just got in from work, and was heading down to the pub to meet S and his golfing buddys after their golf competition this afternoon.

Talking about scarves, I was reading another blog the other day, and the blogger was talking about how they’d found a copy of the famous Alexander McQueen scarf in River Island for a fraction of the price. She also went on to say that the adult seemed too long, so she’d opted for the young girls version. I took a look on the River Island website, and needless to say, I have now got 1 girls scarf winging its way to me from the River Island warehouse!
If you haven’t seen it, this is what it looks like:

(Picture sourced from River Island official website)

I love it! I seem to be in a scarf phase at the minute, I can’t get enough of them! What are your current obsessions?

I’m planning to do a post on my birthday haul over the next few days, so keep an eye out for that!

For now,

xo