How to Get Over A Book Hangover?

The simple answer is that you don’t. Well, not fully anyway. Book hangovers aren’t like regular hangovers, they’re not simply cured by a full English breakfast, a heck of a lot of caffeine and an afternoon nap. No, instead, you are left feeling emotionally empty, endlessly awestruck and completely and utterly lost. For those of you who are lucky enough to have never experienced a book hangover or have no idea what I’m talking about, a book hangover is a condition in which attachment to a book or series that has ended causes the reader emotional distress and longing.

Now you may be thinking, poor Amy, who did this to you? Who hurt you like this? The answer is simply the masterpiece that was A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J Maas. Once again, Sarah has crafted an emotionally intense and beautifully perfect book that has gifted me with a reading experience like no other. These characters mean the world to me, so being able to join them again on another adventure was the ideal escape and one which I wish would never end. If you’re interested, I’ll leave a link to my review here, and I’d love to hear your thoughts too!

Only one other book has ever made me feel this way, and that was The Hero of Ages by Brandon Sanderson. That ending left me broken, and I remember sitting in silence for five minutes whilst I processed everything that had just happened. For days that ending stuck with me, and I can’t help but feel that familiar pang in my chest whenever I think about it. My problem is that I get too emotionally attached and invested with these characters and the worlds in which they exist, so when I finish that final page, I can’t help but feel lost and empty. I become apart of the story as it’s an easy and comforting escape from reality.

I’m probably not the only one who struggles with this attachment, and if you do, then here are some of the tips that have helped me overcome my emotions!

Fan-fiction – If you’re not ready to leave a fictional world or craving more character interactions then fan-fiction is the way to go! There are so many different stories that will help fill that void. But if fan fiction isn’t your thing, then trying looking up fan-art, graphics or playlists, the book community is so creative, and I guarantee you’ll find something! There’s always been this stigma around fan fiction and is a platform that is constantly looked down upon. But believe it or not, a lot of our favourite books have started as fan-fiction! I’ve got a whole Wattpad library filled with some of my favourite fan-fics, and I’m constantly blown away by how incredible the writing is.

Watch something light-hearted – When I experience a book hangover, it shatters my emotions, and usually, I need something fun and light-hearted to take my mind off things! Whether it be an episode of Schitt’s Creek or New Girl, I just need something that’s going to make me smile and forget.

Take a break – I’ve been on such a reading rush recently, and I think I’ve burnt myself out. Sometimes it’s healthy to take a step back and focus on other hobbies and let your mind rest. I feel like sometimes there’s this pressure to always be reading something, but there’s nothing wrong with taking time off and enjoying other things.

Channel that emotion into a review – When I finished A Court of Silver Flames, I had no one to talk to, but I needed to get all of my thoughts out of my head and onto paper, so I stayed up late and channelled all that emotion into my review. After a couple of days, after the hangover had settled, I went back to it and put my thoughts into full sentences rather than leaving it as an emotional rant. This is hands down my favourite way to express my feelings, and it really does help.

Talk to someone – One of my favourite things to do is fangirl with another reader! Fellow readers are the only people who will understand your emotions when it comes to fictional characters and will happily discuss anything that involves their favourite fandoms and authors. But make sure they’ve finished the book before you go blurt out spoilers!

Find an Old Favourite/Comfort Read – Many of us have that list of books that you can re-read a hundred times and still fall in love with, they’re like a warm hug, and that’s exactly what you need when suffering from a book hangover. These books fill you with love and remind you of the joy reading brings us!

Put on some good music and have a dance! – Now, this one may sound silly, but sometimes we need some feel-good endorphins and one of the best ways to do that is to have a dance. So turn on that playlist and get moving!

Blog Posts I Loved This Month | February

February is a month dedicated to love and romance, so it’s no surprise that I fell in love with so many amazing posts, books and new blogs this month! Everyone’s got their creative juices flowing because the quality of posts again this month has been fabulous and I’ve enjoyed reading every single one of them. This is my longest list of favourites ever but I couldn’t resist including all these wonderful posts and celebrating some content that made me smile.

I mentioned in my wrap up post that I was struggling with my mental health last month, but the blogging community has always been such a comforting and lovely place to escape too. Sometimes what you need to do, is make yourself a big-old cup of tea and switch off by reading lots of different bookish posts and surround yourself with a community that is full of so much love and support. So go and get yourself all cosy and enjoy some of the posts I loved last month!


This month love was in the air and lots of bloggers shared some of their favourite romance reads and books that made their hearts flutter:

I loved Priyasha’s @Books and Co. list of 12 romance novels that are better than a candlelit dinner, because there’s nothing better than curling up with a good book!

It’s been a month and I’m still obsessed with Bridgerton. @Two Night Stands shared a great list of romance reads that are perfect for fans of Bridgerton and I could help but add a couple of these to my TBR!

I love book quotes, and this year I want to start writing some of my favourites down and keeping a note of all of them so I can look back on them when I’m having a bad day. Becky @Becky’s Book Blog shared some book quotes that will make you swoon and I’m obsessed with all of them!

Have you ever seen or picked up a book that you’ve instantly fallen in love with? I know I have! Kathryn @The Artsy Bookworm shared her list of books that were love at first sight.

Margaret @Weird Zeal shared 5 romance book recommendations based on sitcom couples! This was such a creative and fun idea and combined two of my favourite things!

We all have that list of books that got us into reading and without them this wonderful blogging and reading journey wouldn’t have happened. Amber and Samantha @Bibliomavens shared their list of 10 books that made them fall in love with reading and it got me feeling all nostalgic, I loved it!

I love it when book recommendations are organised by their tropes and the wonderful Pilar @The Bookworm Shelf did just that and shared 24 amazing, modern, standalone romance novels recommendations!

Love isn’t always romantic and usually takes the form of friendship. Kat @The Lily Cafe shared her list of books that have fabulous friendships and it’s so refreshing to find book recommendations that celebrates the strong bond friendship, instead of the classic friends-to-lovers trope. Ive yet to read any of the books on Kat’s list but there’s definitely a few new ones on my TBR!


Lots of bloggers also shared their lists of bookish things that every book lover needs. I don’t need anymore books or bookish items but these posts have convinced me that it’s good to treat yourself now and then and to get creative:

Em @EmandHerBooks made a list 10 things every book lover needs, and although I already have a couple of things off this list, I need more! I’ve been looking at getting a nice book sleeve for while and maybe this is a sign to treat myself!

Emma @The Bookworm Girl shared a great list of gifts to buy a book lover and I need them all! I’m a big tea drinker so the bookish mug is right up my street and I’m constantly using old tatty bookmarks so it might be time to invest in a fancy new personalised one!

Georgia @Lost in Neverland has inspired me to make my own book quotes jar and I’m obsessed! This is such a wonderfully creative idea that is perfect for keeping track of some of your favourite quotes and it’s lovely to look back on them when you’re having a bad day!

Kristin @Kristin Kraves Books shared her STUNNING Pride and Prejudice collection and it’s fair to say that I’m jealous! I didn’t think I needed any more copies of Austen’s classic but Kristin has convinced me that I have to have the Penguin Clothbound Edition on my shelf!

As many of you know I’m obsessed with The Storygraph, and I’m always on the lookout for some good bookish apps! Estelle @The Bookish Garden shared some of her favourite apps that every bookworm needs on their phone/tablet and I’ve found some great new apps that I’m looking forward to trying soon!


The blogging community is a great place to find book recommendations and you never know whey you’re going to find your next favourite read:

I don’t know about you but I love reading underrated books on Goodreads, it’s like having your own little secret story that only a couple of other readers have experienced. Ally @Ally Writes Things shared her list of books with fewer than 5000 ratings on Goodreads that you should read, and I couldn’t resist adding a few of these to my TBR!

Alison @Alison in Bookland shared a great list of lesser know series by popular authors you need to read ASAP! I don’t need anymore books on my endless TBR, but I couldn’t help myself! Whoops! Anyway, she includes some great series, so be sure to check it out!

Caro @Book Cheshire Cat shared her list of books she’s put and hold and wants to pick up again soon! We’re all guilty of it and it’s encouraged me to take a look at my own list, and hopefully next month I’ll be able to tick a few off!


February 2021 will forever be know as the month A Court of Silver Flames DESTROYED me! So I had to share some reviews and celebrate this book a little more:

Becca @Toastie Books and Katie @Melting Pages shared their review on A Court of Silver Flames and I agree with everything they said! These are both great reviews and highly recommend you check them out!

I love it when people read ACOTAR and fall in love with it! Chiara @Heavenly Bookish shared her thoughts on A Court of Mist and Fury and even shared a few of her favourite fan-art pieces which I loved!


This month I also read some great discussion posts and features that I just couldn’t help but share:

Another feature I’m really enjoying recently is Riddhi @Whispering Stories blogger interviews, this is such a fun and unique idea and the perfect opportunity to discover more about the blogging community! When I’m reading these interviews I feel like I’m right there with them and a part of the conversation, I love it!

Bertie @Lumionsity Library always writes some of the best discussion posts and their recent post about women who write about gay men is brilliant. If you haven’t read it yet then I highly recommend that you do and also check out the comments for some great recommendations.

As an English Literature graduate classics have played a huge part in my life, and I loved reading about Zoë’s @Reading by the Moonlight developing relationship with them. It’s easy to fall out of love with classics and to be intimidated by them, but once you overcome that hurdle it opens up a world of beautiful and powerful stories!


And finally, lots of bloggers shared some super helpful reading and blogging tips that I had to share:

Shannen @Rekindled Bibliophile started a new series called ‘Breaking into Books’ that focuses on giving tips and advice to new readers or readers that have recently returned to books after a long break. I think this is a great idea and I look forward to following along!

It’s no secret that my TBR is way too long and needs cutting down ASAP. And I’m sure I’m not the only one who has an endless list of unread books! Chana and Malka @Paper Procrastinators shared a brilliant post on how to cut down your TBR that is guaranteed to make you smile and laugh out loud.

As I’ve mentioned earlier that I’m a big fan of classics but they can be intimidating. Shaniah @Books and Baking shared her top 10 tips on reading classics that are super helpful and perfect for anyone looking to dive into the wonderful world that is classic literature!

And finally the wonderful Sofii @ A Book. A Thought shared her tips on how to stay motivated as a reader & book blogger. I loved this post and I related to it massively! It’s only in the past couple of months that I’ve really found my blogging identity and passion and creativity for blogging again! Sometimes you just need to take a step back and focus on what you love and to keep it fun! 

February Wrap Up and March TBR

This month has been a whirlwind. The month started with lots of lighthearted and adorable romantic reads and then A Court of Silver Flames was released and I died. Every time I read Sarah’s books, I give my heart to these characters, and they return it broken, battered and yet filled with more love and wonder than before. Words will never express how much I adore this series and escape that it has granted me. If you want to hear more of my thoughts then I’ll leave a link to my review here!

I loved this book so much but it left me with one of the biggest book hangovers I’ve ever experienced, I was completely and utterly broken and emotionally exhausted. So to distract myself, I finished the month with another character inspired read-a-thon and based my weekly TBR around the fashion icon that is Blair Waldorf. Again this was another really fun and lighthearted reading experience but I think I need to take a couple of weeks off from reading and focus on my own mental health. I’ve discovered that I use reading as an escape and a distraction from my own problems and it’s time to take steps towards overcoming these struggles and facing them head on.

The month of March is not only dedicated to my mental health, but to clearing my bookshelves and reading some of the books that I actually own. I’ve started selling books on Depop but I’ve reached the point where I want them gone, so I’m looking at donating a couple to local charity shops, libraries and friends. These books played a huge part in my teenage years and I want to share their magic with other readers and young people.

I’ve also relaunched my Twitter account and stepped in the wonderfully chaotic world that is #booktwitter! Everyone there is so enthusiastic and lovely, and if you want to follow along then I’ll leave a link to my profile here!

Here in the UK, PM Boris Johnson finally unveiled a roadmap for lifting lockdown restrictions across England, so things are looking hopeful and it’s nice to see a light at the end of this tunnel! Hopefully on 12th April, non-essential shops will re-open and I’ll be able to step foot in a bookstore again, and when I do I’m going to treat myself to a BIG bundle of books! I can’t wait! I know it’ll be a while before things go back to ‘normal’ or if they ever will, but this announcement has been a huge mood booster.

Anyway, this month has been a rollercoaster ride, and although I’ve got a lot planned for March, I’m eager to see what this month brings and to start working towards some exciting goals and posts.

Wrap Up

The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren – I’m a sucker for Christina Lauren, her books never fail to make me smile and are all just super adorable! So far I think this is one of my favourites, the enemies-to-lovers and fake dating trope made this such a fun and lighthearted read.

Josh and Hazels Guide to Not Dating by Christina Lauren – I well and truly fell down the Christina Lauren rabbit hole this month and had to read another one of her books ASAP! I loved Hazel, she’s quirky, eccentric and a character you just can’t help but love! If you’re looking for a quick and romantic read, then I suggest you give this one a go!

The Nature of Witches by Rachel Griffin – What makes this book special is the magic system and way in which Griffin communicates through seasonal magic. Her descriptions and the way in which magic connects with these characters is intricately detailed and adds an additional layer of wonder to an already captivating story. There’s something beautifully enchanting and equally destructive about this book and its characters, a balance that results in a powerful narrative that will keep readers hooked.

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff – Everyone’s told me how incredible this series is, and they’re not wrong! Going into it, I was a bit skeptical with format but it ended up being one of my favourite aspects of the entire book! I’m OBSESSED with Kady and Ezra’s relationship and witty back and forth banter they share, I didn’t expect to laugh this much!

A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J Maas – It’s no surprise that I’ve fallen utterly in love with this book, it was perfect. Once again, Sarah has crafted an emotionally intense and beautifully perfect masterpiece that has gifted me with a reading experience like no other. These characters mean the world to me, so being able to join them again on another adventure was the ideal escape filled with magic and wonder, and one I wished would never end.

Breakfast at Tiffany’s by Truman Capote – I read this as a part of my Blair Waldorf character read-a-thon and you can’t get more Blair Waldorf than Breakfast at Tiffany’s! I really enjoyed this book and it was interesting to get to know a darker and wilder side of Holly Golightly. Capote has a almost lyrical way with words that just make it so easy to read and enjoy!

Play as it Lays by Joan Didion – It’s no secret that I absolutely adore Didion and her writing. I’m slowly making my way through all of her books and read this one as a part of my Blair Waldorf read-a-thon. As expected I loved it and it’s clear why it’s on TIMES list of best novels.

Romancing Mr Bridgerton by Julia Quinn – I finished the month off with bit of Bridgerton! I’m slowly making my way through this series and really enjoyed watching Penelope and Colin’s relationship blossom. The second book will always be my favourite but this was still a lighthearted and romantic read and I can’t wait to hopefully see more of their relationship in season 2!

Mrs Dalloway by Virgina Woolf – When I read To the Lighthouse I thought I was missing something, everyone raved about her writing was but I struggled to connect with it. But then I read Mrs Dalloway and I now I see it. Mrs. Dalloway is a complex, compelling novel that enters into the consciousness and hearts of it’s characters and one that witnesses the battle between sanity and insanity. I loved it!

TBR

Gemina by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff – I don’t plan on reading much this month, but this series is at the top of my TBR! I flew through the first book so I’m fairly confident that devour this one too!

Obsidio by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff – There’s no way I’m not finishing this series this month. I’m too invested and I need to know what happens to these characters.

The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern – I’ve really been craving some of Morgenstern’s magic and I think it’s about time I tick this one off the TBR pile! The Night Circus is one of my all time favourite reads, so it’s fair to say that I’m going into this with high expectations.

Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo – After Netflix dropped that trailer for the upcoming series, I knew I had to re-read both Shadow and Bone and Six of Crows! Word’s can’t describe how excited I am for this series to hit our screens, and for these characters and Bardugo’s wonderful Grishaverse to come to life. Transporting this world from page to screen isn’t a small feat but such responsibility has been embraced by executive producers Eric Heisserer and Shawn Levy, with Leigh Bardugo also on board as a producer. I have total and utter faith that this adaptation will stay true to the books and will successfully embody everything we as the fans cherish in this series. 

Reading Like Blair Waldorf For A Week – Wrap Up

Hey Upper East Siders!

For the past week I’ve been channeling the fashion icon and all round Queen B that is Blair Waldorf! I’ve dedicated my entire TBR for the week to her, and have centred my reading around classic romance novels and elegant females icons like Grace Kelly and Audrey Hepburn, as well as embracing Blair’s style and daily routine, minus the scheming! I like to think I did a good job with designing my reading list and it was nice to tick a few more classics off my list!

When I’m not working you’ll usually find me in my pyjamas, or anything that is comfortable, so dressing up and putting a full face of make-up on was quite nice. I pulled all of my skirts and pearls and got to work! Blair, if anything, is determined. She never lets anyone or anything get in the way of her dreams and aspirations, and that’s one quality I think we can all take away from her. She oozes confidence, so I tried my best this week to channel all my energy into working towards my goals and I even started exploring manifestation, because sometimes we all need a little help from the universe!

On Wednesday, I embraced my Blair Waldorf fantasy and spent the evening reading and watching Breakfast at Tiffany’s along with some delicious macaroons and a glass of pink Prosecco, it was all very fancy! And then on Saturday I made a beautiful brunch spread, fit for New York’s elite, and spent my afternoon flicking through various fashion magazines as well as doing a cheeky bit of online shopping!

Overall, I had a great week as not only did I get to read some great books but Blair has encouraged me to go after my dreams because, “If you really want something you don’t stop for anyone or anything, until you get it.”.

I tried to stick to my TBR but I kept finding books on my bookshelf that a) I really wanted to read and b) that I knew Blair would secretly love!

Breakfast at Tiffany’s by Truman Capote – You can’t get more Blair Waldorf than Breakfast at Tiffany’s! I really enjoyed this book and it was interesting to get to know a darker and wilder side of Holly Golightly. Capote has a almost lyrical way with words that just make it so easy to read and enjoy!

Play as it Lays by Joan Didion – Joan Didion is an American writer who launched her career in the 1960s after winning an essay contest sponsored by Vogue magazine, and who’s writing focuses on the disintegration of American morals, cultural chaos and the Hollywood lifestyle. There’s no doubt in my mind that Blair would love and consider Didion a fabulous and powerful writer. I’ve been making my way through her books, and settled on Play as it Lays, a book that made it onto the TIME 100 Best English-language Novels from 1923 to 2005 list, and as always it was amazing.

Romancing Mr Bridgerton by Julia Quinn – I’m pretty sure Blair Waldorf would love Bridgerton, if not for Lady Wistledown then definitely for The Duke! I’ve been slowly making my way through this series and this lighthearted romance was exactly what I needed after a month of intense fantasy adventures.

Mrs Dalloway by Virgina Woolf – When I read To the Lighthouse I thought I was missing something, everyone raved about her writing was but I struggled to connect with it. But then I read Mrs Dalloway and I now I see it. Mrs. Dalloway is a complex, compelling novel that enters into the consciousness and hearts of it’s characters and one that witnesses the battle between sanity and insanity. I loved it!

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier – I’m only half way into this book but I still wanted to include it on my list! The atmospheric writing and the gorgeous prose is what makes this book special, there’s the perfect balance of suspense, darkness and mystery, and I can’t wait to finish it soon!

The Mystery Blogger Award

I haven’t done a book tag in ages, they’re so much fun do, so I thought now would be a perfect time! I want to say a huge thank you to the lovely Georgia @Lost in Neverland for tagging me and if you don’t already follow her then please do, she’s so lovely is always posting fabulous content that I know you will all enjoy! Book tags are the perfect way to get to know everyone better, so I hope you enjoy reading my answers and learning a little more about me! 

The Rules:

  • Put the award logo/image on your blog.
  • List the rules.
  • Thank whoever nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  • Mention Okoto Enigma, the creator of the award and provide a link as well.
  • Tell your readers 3 things about yourself.
  • Nominate some other bloggers
  • Notify your nominees by commenting on their blog.
  • Ask your nominees any 5 questions of your choice; with one weird or funny question (specify).
  • Share a link to your best post(s).

Three Things About Me:

1. I’m a dreamer, and one of my lifelong aspirations is to one day own a little independent bookshop somewhere. It would be filled with endless shelves, cosy reading spots, and a quiet little cafe. It would be the perfect bookstagram location and a wonderful escape for readers and writers alike. But right now, the dream is to work in publishing and to share incredible stories with the world.

2. One of my favourite places in the world is the self-proclaimed book-town of Hay-On-Wye. Not only is it a celebrated book town that hosts a fabulous literary festival each year, but it’s also a place that encapsulates the warmth and serenity of any typical Welsh town. To me, it’s like a second home and will forever provide me with that little bit of joy. Even thinking about it and all of its bookshops is making me feel all warm and cosy inside. It was also at the Hay Literary Festival where I met one of my all-time favourite authors Sarah J Maas, her work has had a huge impact on my life, and I look forward to returning to the festival next year.

3. And finally, I don’t want to toot my own horn, but I make the BEST lasagne! I used to cook for all of my friends at University, and it was one of my go-to crowd pleaser dishes!

Georgia’s Questions:
Do you have a TBR for March?

Yes! It’s not as big as my usual TBR, but my aim next month is to clear my bookshelf and finally read some of the forgotten books on my shelf! The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern is at the top of my list at the moment and I can’t wait to experience more of her magic.

Do you prefer to read inside or outside?

What I’d give to be on a sun-bed in Greece with a pile of books and not a worry in the world! I love reading outside in summer when it’s lovely and warm but I also love my book nook! It’s the perfect cosy space for those winter evenings or when its dark and stormy outside.

If you could meet a book heroine or hero, who would it be?

I’d give anything to meet any one of Sarah J Maas’s characters, especially Nesta or Azriel! I’d like to think that Azriel would whisk me away somewhere and I’d love to have a girly sleepover with Nesta, Gwyn and Emerie at the House of Wind! I’ve got lots of romance recommendations that I think they’d love!

If you had to burn a book, which would it be?

The Scorch Trials by James Dashner. I really enjoyed the first book in the series but everything went downhill after that and it got way too confusing!

Do any bloggers inspire you, if so, who?

SO MANY! The book blogging community is one that is always so supportive and loving and I want to say a HUGE thank you to every single one of you! But I want to highlight a few favourites, and if you’re still not following them then please go and do so!

I might be biased because Georgia tagged me in this post, but she’s so supportive and lovely! Not only does she has great taste in books but she’s constantly posting fun and creative posts that I love to read. Other bloggers I love include Sofii @A Book. A Thought, Becky @Becky’s Book Blog and Ahaana Windows to Worlds! They all radiate positivity and joy, and continue to inspire me to create fun and unique content! They all succeed in making the blogging community such a wonderful and welcoming place and their comments never fail to make me smile!

My Questions
  1. Why did you start blogging?
  2. What’s your go-to karaoke song?
  3. What book character would you like to hang out with if you were having a bad day?
  4. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received?
  5. Favourite quote?

And finally, I want to nominate some new blogs I’ve discovered recently:

Lea @Lea’s Literary Life

Shannen @Rekindled Bibliophile

Em @Em And Her Books

Aarushi @Aarushi Reads

Louise @Lou’s Book Stuff

And anyone else who wants to give this tag a go!

A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J Maas – Book Review

We’ve been patiently waiting for this book for years, and as soon as I read that first page it felt like I was home.

As I started this series, I thought back to when I first met Sarah at The Hay Festival in 2015. I remember listening intently to Sarah’s passion and love for this series, unbeknownst to the never-ending joy, emotional comfort and magical wonder it would bring me. Fast forward six years, and here I am, once again enamoured and emotionally ruined after experiencing the incredible masterpiece that is A Court of Silver Flames.

There’s something wonderfully familiar and comforting about Sarah’s writing, it takes you by the hand and leads you back into this incredibly detailed and limitless world that many of us readers like to call home. It warmly welcomes you to join these characters on their journeys of love, self-discovery and bravery, and I can’t help but consider them as family. It’s silly, but these characters and the world Sarah has created makes me so emotional and have become apart of my soul. Words will never express how much I adore this series and the wonder and escape that it has granted me. And for that, I will be forever grateful. Thank you, Sarah, truly.

As much as I adore Feyre and Rhys, it was time for them to pass the pen on and for Nesta’s and Cassian’s story to be told. And what a story it was. Nesta is hated and broken. But her journey isn’t about ‘fixing herself’ because, in reality, she isn’t broken, she’s hurt and trapped in her spiral of self-loathing. Sarah explains Nesta’s hostility and fears with grace and understanding. Her character arc isn’t as simple as ‘getting over it’ but is instead one of delicate and powerful determination and acceptance. Her struggle is painful and messy, and it’s not pretty or clear on how she’ll learn to move forward or if she’ll learn to move forward at all. Sarah always portrays trauma and mental health beautifully, she doesn’t sugar coat things instead she shows them as they are which is real, complex and relatable. We see brilliant, vulnerable sides to these characters that we haven’t really explored before, all of which are depicted gracefully from beginning to end. We are not all easily healed. Healing isn’t always a straight journey, it’s a mountain climb, one step forward two steps back and once again Sarah manages to capture that in Nesta’s journey, one which I am honoured to have taken alongside her.

This series has always been about family, and Nesta’s new chosen family and friends are her support system and gives her the strength to fight. She accepts the love she thinks she deserves but, it is through Cassian’s steadfastness and Gwyn and Emerie’s sisterly bond and unified support that helps her tear down the stone barriers from her past to form a loving environment from which she strengthens and blossoms. Like the House of Wind, Nesta finds a home for herself and learns to face the darkness and to focus on what brings her joy, it was a pleasure to witness her grow, and I particularly enjoyed watching her fall back in love with music.

And then we have Nesta’s relationship with Cassian, a relationship that starts with playful and witty remarks and escalates into sexual teasing and mutual wanting. Cassian refuses to give up on Nesta, and it’s his dedication that ignites a relationship that rattles the stars. It’s clear why these two are mates, they are two sides of the same coin and compliment each other beautifully.

The smut. Hot damn. Is it too forward to say that I loved it? I’ve taken my first steps into adulthood alongside this series, and it’s refreshing to see these book mature with its reads and develop into something so much more. Those intimate scenes between Nesta and Cassian are wild and passionate yet controlled and loving, this was different kind of love and one, which I have fallen head over heels for.

I should also mention that addition Azriel chapter, it was EVERYTHING! And I could 100% see him with our little warrior Gwyn. Don’t you just love it when Sarah teases us with new relationships!

As expected, I cried a lot at this book. Every time I read these books, I give my heart to these characters, and they return it broken, battered and yet filled with more love and wonder than before. There were moments, like the Winter Solstice and those final chapters, in which these characters achieve ultimate happiness and found myself crying with joy because everything was perfect. There’s so much more that I want to discuss but I think it’s best if I hold off on the spoilers for now!

Once again, Sarah has crafted an emotionally intense and beautifully perfect masterpiece that has gifted me with a reading experience like no other. These characters mean the world to me, so being able to join them again on another adventure was the ideal escape and one I wished would never end. It was the perfect ending – and new beginning – to Nesta and Cassian’s relationship and a journey that will stay with me forever. I finished the entire book in 24-hours, and I’m honestly considering re-reading it again soon because I loved every page so much. Like us, Nesta has found her way home, and she is a reminder that we all deserved to be loved and to have the courage to go out into the world, face our fears and climb that mountain.

Reading Like Blair Waldorf for a Week | TBR

One of my favourite features from last year was my character read-a-thons, a series where I based my reading goals and TBR around a chosen fictional character with the aim of reading something a little different. So far I’ve channelled my inner Rory Gilmore, Marianne Sheridan and Connell Waldron and that’s only just the beginning as I’ve got loads more planned for 2021!

So, what better way to start the year off than with a read-a-thon inspired by the fashion icon that is Blair Waldorf from Gossip Girl. Even now I’m still obsessed with the show and it’s always one I tend to re-watch now and then because it’s just SO GOOD! I’m very excited for the reboot, but it’s got big shoes to fill because I don’t think anything will beat the original and its quintessential cast of characters.

I’m going all out for this read-a-thon and I’m going to channel my inner Blair Waldorf and dedicate this entire week to her. I’m breaking out all of my pearls, skirts and headbands but I’ll be sure to leave the meddling and plotting out of the ensemble! Like Blair I’m a sucker for a classic romance and elegant female icons like Grace Kelly and Audrey Hepburn, so I’ve made sure that my TBR for this week is full of books that she would approve of or has read herself in the show/books.

Blair is very much an overachiever and perfectionist, so my TBR for this week is quite ambitious but I’m confident that I should be able to read most of them. I’m super excited for this read-a-thon and I think this is my favourite TBR so far!


Breakfast at Tiffany’s by Truman Capote – Gossip Girl always packed its episodes with classic Hollywood references, especially when it came to Blair’s dream sequences which usually mimicked iconic scenes from Breakfast at Tiffany’s, so it’s only fitting that the first book on my TBR is this beloved novella.

Rebecca by Daphne du May – This has been on my TBR ever since the film was released last year on Netflix and I’ve even withheld from watching the film to avoid spoiling myself. This gothic romance follows an unnamed young woman who impetuously marries a wealthy widower, only to discover that he and his household are haunted by the memory of his late first wife, Rebecca.

What Would Audrey Do? by Pamela Keogh – Another Hepburn inspired read! This book hopes to bring a charming dose of Audrey Hepburn into our everyday lives, with wisdom on relationships, fashion, home, travel and other opportunities for sophisticated living.

Mrs Dalloway by Virgina Woolf – Heralded as Virginia Woolf’s greatest novel, this is a vivid portrait of a single day in a woman’s life and one which has been on my TBR since graduating! During my degree I read a lot of Woolf but somehow this book escaped me, but after reading To The Lighthouse and Orlando I knew she was an author I wanted to explore and read more from!

Don’t Tell Alfred by Nancy Mitford – Although this book isn’t mention in the series, I’d like to think that Blair would also enjoy Mitford’s lighthearted and witty narrative on love, class and relationships. Set twenty years after the events of the second book, Don’t Tell Alfred follows Fanny as she navigates her own problems and the complex world of French politics and society.

Fairytales, Legends and Folklore From Around The World

After the incredible response I received from my last fairytale-inspired post, I thought I would share a few of my favourite classic fairytales and folklore from around the world. There are thousands of incredibly meaningful, and dark spine-chilling legends out there, and these are just merely a handful that intrigued me and sparked my interest! I had so much fun researching and reading all these individual tales, and I want to make it my aim this year to read more books from around the world and about different cultures so, any recommendations would be fabulous!

People have been telling stories about magic, witches, animals and heroes, since ancient times. Fairytales, folklore and legends are full of wild adventures and battles between good and evil. But what I love most about them is the life lessons that can be interpreted from them, and how they vary between cultures to represent colourful beliefs, cultural differences and centuries of wisdom.


Korea

The Blind Man’s Daughter – This beautiful tale highlights the importance of family and the lengths a daughter will go to save her father. The story begins when Shim, a poor, blind man, makes a promise to bring three hundred sacks of rice as a tribute to the temple of Budda after a monk saved his life. On his return home, father and daughter begin to weep, for neither of them could think of a way to pay their debt, that is until Shimchong’s mother returns to her in a dream with a solution…

A Purse Full of Tales – This tale focuses on a young boy who greedily demands stories from everyone he meets but refuses to share them, resulting in the stories rebelling and plotting their revenge against the boy. What I love most about this story is the moral behind it as it simply reminds us that stories are gifts that need to be heard and shared with others, rather than being kept hidden! This is a sign for anyone who has a story in their head to start writing and share your imagination with the world.

China

The Ballard of Fa Mulan – This legendary folk heroine will always be a favourite of mine. Like the Disney adaptation, the legend follows Mulan, as she goes to war in her father place for ten years and then returns home. When her identity is eventually revealed to her comrades Mulan simply offers a metaphor: “The male hare has heavy front paws. The female hare tends to squint. But when they are running side-by-side close to the ground, who can tell me which is male or female?”

The Empty Pot – This children’s folktale again has such a beautiful moral and teaches us the importance of honesty and perseverance. One day by royal proclamation, the Emperor announced a contest to determine who would succeed him to the throne. He declared that any boy should come to the palace to receive one royal seed and whichever boy could show the best results within six months would win the contest and become the Emperor. The young boy cared for his seed and did everything to help it grow, but alas nothing happened. Six months later, all the boys returned to the place with their blossoming plants and awaited judgment, all except for the one young boy who returns with his empty pot. The young boy presents the empty pot to the Emperor and reveals that all the seeds had been cooked, so there was no way anything could have grown! The Emperor valued the boy’s honesty and declared him his successor!

Iceland

Huldufólk – Huldufólk or hidden people are elves in Icelandic folklore and are supernatural beings that live in nature and are a huge and magical part of Icelandic culture. They remain hidden in enchanted caves and rocks except on special occasions, when a lucky few may spot them wandering. According to folklore, the elves were created by God when he visited Adam and Eve. To prepare for the visit, Eve was washing the children but failed to finish before God arrived, so she hid the rest of the children. When God discovered what she had done he said, “What man hides from God, God will hide from man” and so the Hidden people came to be.

Brazil

The Fountain Of Giant Land – Long ago there lived a blind King and one day a woman visited the palace with news of a fountain in Giantland that would cure his blindness. The eldest son then began his quest for the cure, but not before being enslaved by a giant, a fate that also befell the middle brother. To save his family the youngest son set out on his quest and managed to ignore the giant’s tricks and eventually reach the fountain.

At the fountain, he met an old woman and an enchanted princess in the form of a dragon who lay sleeping. The woman told the young prince to return in a year and a day when the enchantment would be broken, and he could claim her as his bride. After an exchange of rings, the prince made it back down the slope and saved his brothers. However, the two older brothers wanted the honours and blessings from the quest for themselves and, cast the young brother ashore whilst he was sleeping.

A year and a day flew swiftly by, but the prince never returned for the princess, so she travelled to meet the king and discover what evil had befallen the young prince. The king listened to their story and forced the brothers to confess. They soon found the young prince working hard for a fisherman and the couple were reunited. The fisherman revealed that, the young prince was the most faithful man to have ever worked for him, and that he had proven to the world that he would be fit to reign as king.

The Legend of Iara – Iara was once the pride of her tribe and grew to be the best warrior of them all — courageous, kind, strong and of course, beautiful. However, her brothers became envious of her and decided to solve their problem with the traditional go-to solution: murder. To save herself, she kills her brothers, but as punishment for what she had done, her father threw her into a river to drown. But she was not alone, and the fish in the river saved her by transforming her into a mermaid. Now when men found her, she would enchant them with her beauty and singing voice.

Middle East

The Seven Voyages of Sinbad the Sailor – From The Thousand and One Nights, Sinbad’s adventures across the sea full of riches and of course monsters. The ever-restless Sinbad, who constantly finds himself shipwrecked tells the tale of his grand voyages across the sea and his alterations with mythological legends such as Roc’s (enormous birds), Polyphemus, the Old Man of the Sea and other royal figures.

Russia

The Legend of Baba Yaga – In the deepest darkest woods of Russia, lived a legendary woman renowned for her frighteningly ugly depiction, ever-moving house and appetite for children. Baba Yaga, the Witch of the East, is a character who influenced many classic fictional adventures including the works of Sarah J Maas, Uprooted by Naomi Novik and other Russian folklore.

Books for Every Type of Love | Romance Week 2021

Happy Valentines Day!

This week I’ve been celebrating all things love and have shared a few other posts to help everyone get into the romantic mood and spirit, so I thought I conclude this week with a few romantic recommendations.

I saw this trend over on Bookstagram, and knew I had to do it too! Below is a list of some of the different types of love and some romantic tropes we can’t help but love! I’ve decided to only include books I’ve read on this list, otherwise these recommendations would be as long as my TBR, but feel free to leave any other recommendations in the comments below!


Enemies to Lovers

Everyones favourite romance trope, and the start of some of my favourite fictional couples, including Feyre and Rhys, Anthony and Kate and Bryce and Hunt. What I love the most about these enemies to lovers tropes is the constant bickering and witty remarks that slowly uncover each others hidden feelings for one another and that moment of realisation where they declare their love! I just can’t get enough and I love that we know they’re going to end up together but they just don’t know it yet!

Fake Dating

Again another ‘unexpected love’ trope that pushes two people in intolerable circumstances to form a ‘fake romance’ in order to solve their problem. However, it’s not that simple, and things start to develop romantically!

Friends to Lovers

This ‘will-they-won’t-they’ trope, already has the strong foundations of friendship and sometimes things blossom into something more!

Arranged Romance/Marriage

What’s more romantic than two people being forced to fall in love with each other? This is very similar to our enemies-to-lovers trope but it’s still a classic theme in YA fiction that us readers can’t help but love. One of my favourites in this category is The Wrath and the Dawn by Renée Ahdieh, a beautiful reimagining of The Arabian Nights legend and series I hope to dive back into this year.

Forbidden Romance

Whether it goes against social conduct, family rules or just the universe pushing two people apart, forbidden romances prove that love can conquer anything and to find peace in those ephemeral moments of adoration. But it also teaches us the importance of communication, am I right?

I will never stop going on about how wonderful The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller is, and I highly recommend that it’s on next months TBR because it is such a beautifully heartbreaking read.

Heartbreak

These books broke my heart and left me emotionally shattered, so forewarning for anyone who has these books on their TBR to make sure you have your tissues at the ready. As expected not every relationship ends with a ‘happily ever after’ but it does remind us to cherish those fleeting moments of pure happiness and blissful adoration. They remind us to reflect on them, because these are the moments that ultimately aid us in the moulding of ourselves and our future. Heartbreak is something may of us will endure, but it’s what’s waiting for us on the other side that make it all worthwhile.

Slowburn Romance

There’s nothing I hate more than an ‘insta-love’ situation, I’m much more a slow-burn and gradual romantic development kind of person, ever if the anticipation and teasing does kill me at times! With a slow-burn relationship we’re able to truly see our characters grow and develop meaningful feelings for each other resulting in a strong connection and heartwarming romance that just melts my heart. These longer relationships also allow our characters to slow identify and appreciate each others little quirks and create something beautiful.

Loving Yourself

In the wise words of RuPaul, ‘if you can’t love yourself, how in the hell are you going to love somebody else?’! These books embrace who we are and celebrate loving ourselves unconditionally as we follow our characters on insightful and beautiful journeys of self-discovery and worth. The reading experiences I had with all these books was unlike any other and I’m grateful to have been apart of them.

Family Love

There’s more to love than just the romantic kind, sometimes love can be found within our family, whether they are blood related or a found family, and is the type of love that has no bounds and will be there unconditionally. These books celebrate and reflect on the importance and fragility of family, so be sure to have your tissues at the ready.

And Finally,

Highlander Romance

I know that this isn’t a type of ‘love’ but it is a love of mine! I’m obsessed with these trashy romance novels and I’m making it my mission to read as many as I can. It all started in a pub in Glasgow, where my best friend and I decided to start a book club with some friends from university, and since then I’ve forced them all to experience the wonderfully cheesy romance that is these highlander adventures. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon is the exception on this list, and is anything but a trashy romance, instead it’s the perfect alternative for anyone looking for a Scottish inspired historical romance.

My Favourite Meet-Cutes in YA Fiction | Romance Week 2021

Happy Romance Week! This week my single-self is celebrating everything wonderful about love and along with some of the books and characters that prove that love is real and magical! I thought I’d manifest some of my own romance by going back to where it all started and sharing some of my favourite fictional ‘meet-cutes’!

So what is a meet-cute? It’s an amusing or charming first encounter between two characters that eventually leads to the development of a relationship between them. Eli Wallach’s character Arthur from The Holiday (2006) put it’s best, when he explains what a meet-cute is:

“It’s how two characters meet in a movie. Say a man and a woman both need something to sleep in, and they both go to the same men’s pyjama department. And the man says to the salesman, ‘I just need bottoms.’ The woman says, ‘I just need a top.’ They look at each other, and that’s the meet-cute,” he says.

This initial spark between characters pave the way for different and sometimes less traditional relationships and I can’t help but squeal with excitement when this moment occurs especially when two characters who are destined to be together meet but they just don’t know it yet…

Below are 12 of my favourite unexpected moments of serendipity, all of which include swoon-worthy meetings that us readers can’t help but love, from love-at-first-sight to enemies-to-lovers, awkward encounters and heart-warming beginnings that make our hearts flutter.

*Spoiler Alert*


Sorcery of Thorns: Amazon.co.uk: Rogerson, Margaret: Books

Elisabeth and Nathaniel from Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson – I love the innocence behind this encounter and the relationship between these too. The pair meet when Elisabeth is discovered spying on the mysterious Magister Nathaniel, in an attempt to discover if he had pointy ears and cloven hooves or not. After destroying a couple of bookshelves and faking a not-so-convincing stumble, the two engage on magical adventure that strengthens the romantic bond between them.

The Sun Is Also a Star (Yoon, Nicola): Amazon.co.uk: Yoon, Nicola: Books

Natasha and Daniel from The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon – These two characters meet through a twist of fate and then, of course, fall in love. Daniel saves Natasha from being hit by a car, after briefly meeting in a record store, and continues to spend the day together and prove to her that love is real with just 36 questions. But this isn’t your typical romance, as the book tackles immigration and all types of love and expectation and if you haven’t read it yet I highly suggest that you add it to your TBR.

Pride and Prejudice - Alma Books

Elizabeth and Darcy from Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen – The ultimate enemies-to-lovers duo and a classic fictional couple that I can’t help but adore. Darcy first meets Elizabeth Bennet at a ball, where he makes rather demeaning remarks about her while she is within earshot and it is in this moment that the romantic spark between them is ignited!

The Duke and I | Julia Quinn | Author of Historical Romance Novels

Daphne and Simon from The Duke and I by Julia Quinn – As much as I love Anthony and Kate, it’s Daphne and Simon’s first meeting that earns them a spot on this list. Their meeting is slightly different in the books, but it does still involve Daphne’s punching Lord Berbrooke. Simon then stumbles upon her and Berbrook’s unconscious body, and the two devise a plan to remove him before anyone sees.

Josh and Hazel from Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating by Christina Lauren – I’ve been on a Christina Lauren binge this week, and the chaos that surrounds their meet cute is brilliant. The pair originally meet at collage, after a few unsuccessful and unfortunate run in’s that include Hazel gracelessly throwing up on Josh’s shoes and a post-surgical and unintelligible email. Fast forward ten years when the pair meets again and realise that maybe (after some unsuccessful blind dates) that they’re exactly what each other needs.

The Final Empire: Mistborn Book One eBook: Sanderson, Brandon:  Amazon.co.uk: Kindle Store

Vin and Elend from The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson – Now it wouldn’t be a favourites list without including Sanderson, would it? Vin (disguised as Valette) first meets Elend when she discovers his reading spot at a ball, and from then the two develop a comforting friendship that ultimately blossoms into something more.

The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue: Amazon.co.uk: V.E. Schwab:  9781785652509: Books

Henry and Addie from The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E.Schwab – He REMEMBERED her! My heart grew two sizes when Henry recognised Addie, even if he did catch her attempting to steal another book. The relationship between these two star-crossed lovers was beautifully heartbreaking and one of my favourite reads of last year.

House of Earth and Blood (Crescent City, #1) by Sarah J. Maas

Bryce and Hunt from Crescent City by Sarah J Maas – As soon as these two met, I knew I was in for a wildly intense relationship that I was going to fall utterly in love with. The banter and attitude between the two instantly establishes that enemies-to-lovers dynamic that us readers can’t get enough of and leaves us wanting more.

The Night Circus: Amazon.co.uk: Morgenstern, Erin: 9780099554790: Books

Celia and Marco from The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern – One of my favourite fictional couples ever! Marco meets his opponent Celia initially when she auditions for the circus, but it’s not until 1894 that Celia learns the identity of her opponent when she mistakenly takes Marco’s enchanted umbrella from a cafe in Prague and he chases her down for its return. The two then embark on a magical whirlwind and heartbreaking romance that truly defines the power and wonder of love.

The Raven Boys: Amazon.co.uk: Stiefvater, Maggie: Books

Blue and Gansey from The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater – I know this one isn’t particularly romantic or charming but this moment is the beginning of everything. Blue meets Gansey soon-to-be dead spirit in a graveyard and is drawn to him, in a way she can’t entirely explain. The two then officially meet a Nino’s, which ends in a disaster and Blue walking away Gansey’s journal with his notes on Glendower. The relationship isn’t instant and is ladened with all sorts of problems (Blue’s prophecy in particular) but they soon became one of my favourite fictional couples.

To All the Boys I've Loved Before: Amazon.co.uk: Han, Jenny: Books

Lara Jean and Peter from To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han – The ultimate meet-cute and another one of my favourite contemporary moments. Many of you probably know how these two meet, but for those who don’t know it all starts with a secret letter that was never meant to be sent and from there the rest is history.

A Court of Mist and Fury A Court of Thorns and Roses: Amazon.co.uk: Maas,  Sarah J.: Books

Nesta and Cassian from A Court of Mist and Fury – The two meet when Feyre and the Inner Circle visit her family’s estate and it’s clear that Nesta is an equal match to Cassian’s quarrelling and taunting. It’s only a couple of days now until the release of A Court of Silver Flames and I can’t contain my excitement for much longer!