Monday, 22 February 2016

My First Semester at University in GIFS!

Hello readers, and happy Monday! I'm feeling quite optimistic today for a productive week ahead- last week was distinctively unproductive and I spent most of it watching crap TV shows and feeling tired, however this weekend has been really gratifying in terms of the work I've done and the prep I've done for the week ahead. I have even written this blog post ahead of time... wahey!

So today I thought I would write a post I have been thinking about for a while... I want to talk about my first semester of university, but since these last few months have been...  indescribable to say the least, I thought I would describe my first semester purely in GIF form. I hope you guys enjoy it :)

On the first day of Freshers' Week you feel like you're going on the biggest adventure of your life...

... But by the second week (if you're lucky) the biggest adventure feels like leaving campus before midday...

... After a few shots with your friends you not only feel like Beyonce, but somehow you think you can dance like her too.

You are wrong.

Heading off to your first ever lecture, you feel like a baby toddling around campus among all the adults.

The worst thing that can happen during Freshers' Week is someone making toast in the kitchen at 4am...

And setting the fire alarm off.

The biggest struggle is deciding whether to get up at 9am for a cooked breakfast or sleeping off your hangover...

You'll sit in the majority of your lectures with a face like this...

And when someone texts you about the essay due for the next day you had no idea about, your face is like this...

You feel like you have found the best friends in the whole wide world, who are friendly and hilarious and so so supportive and encouraging of everything you do...

... But at the end of the day, all the encouragement only leads to bad decisions (mainly involving tequila)...

But by Christmas, you feel pride in the fact that you have officially survived your first semester, and your family have never seemed so freakin' wonderful. 

I hope you all enjoyed this post! If you are a first year or have been to university, share your best experiences of your first semester here :)

Find me on these sites:

My Blog- http://delightfulbookreviews.blogspot...
Huffington Post-


 Until next time :) 

Monday, 15 February 2016

How To Deal With Blogging Slumps...

Hello, readers! I hope you all had a lovely weekend and are not too sad about going back to school/university/work. I have had an absolutely hectic weekend so am looking forward to a bit more of a calm week. I have had a very productive Monday so far, so I'm hoping that means I can have a bit of an early night!

Anyway, today I thought I would talk to you about... yes.... the dreaded blogging slump. *shudder*. It makes me tremble just thinking about it. But don't worry yourselves, as I have compiled some advice in my horribly scattered brain that you will hopefully find (to some extent) helpful. 

Everyone comes to a point in their blogging career when they have simply nothing to write about. The inspiration is lacking and their are no creative juices flowing. The idea of opening your laptop and logging onto Blogger fills you with dread. You place your fingers on the laptop keys and... nothing comes. This has happened to us all once in a while, but the important thing to remember is that it won't last forever. But in case you're one of the unlucky many who are stuck in a blogging slump right now, here are a few tips and tricks that I use when the dreaded affliction plagues me...

1. Read posts like these.

There are probably hundreds of posts like this one floating around the internet. There are more helpful ones though, with actual lists of posts you could write or thought prompts. These are really worth checking out :)

2. Relax.

Just relax. Read, watch a Netflix show or see friends. The reason why you blog is because you enjoy it, not because someone is making you do it. If you're in the middle of a blogging slump, one of the best ways to get over it is to just relax and wait for inspiration come to you. Although you may feel like it's a lost cause, it will come eventually!

3. Contact authors to write guest posts.

A lot of authors write guest posts for bloggers to promote their book, so why not contact a few and ask them if they would like to write a guest post for your blog? This way, you can have great content for your blog to keep your readers happy whilst you're lacking inspiration, and at the same time make one author very happy!

4. Re-write your most popular posts.

This is one I haven't personally tried (because my most popular posts tend to be author features and book reviews), but if you have old posts that are really popular (for example: 'my favourite YA romances') you can always rewrite them, for example 'my favourite YA romances 2.0'. You can be pretty sure that if someone read your post the first time, they're bound to read a newer and, arguably better improved, post.

5. Write a 'Day In The Life' blog post.

I haven't tried this one out myself, but I'm pretty sure that if you have a loyal bunch of readers enjoying your blog, they're going to be interested in you, the writer, as well! Why not bring a camera (or your smartphone) around with you all day and document what you're doing? You can get some pretty pictures and write a morning, afternoon and evening account of what you have gotten up to during the day. I love reading posts like these, and I'm sure others would too!

I hope some of you at least have found this useful! If you have any tips of how to deal with blogging slumps, let me know in the comments!

Find me on these sites:

My Blog- http://delightfulbookreviews.blogspot...
Huffington Post-

Until next time :)

Tuesday, 9 February 2016

My Favourite Bookish Tattoos!

Hello readers! I hope this lovely Tuesday finds you happy and well. After a very hectic first week of classes at university I am finally getting back into the swing of things, and most importantly, getting on top of my course reading, so I can soon get back to reading the books on my TBR pile! 

Anyway, today I thought I would write a post about my favourite bookish tattoos!

I have to say I'm not the hugest fan of tattoos, but I think that certain ones, when they have a cool meaning, can look really awesome. I am more of a fan of little tattoos, and although I don't think I want to get one (be assured, parents, if you're reading this!) I still love finding cool tattoos online that an *edgier* Alix would definitely be up for getting!

So, check out my favourite bookish tattoos below! (images from POPSUGAR)

Can you figure out what books these quotes come from? Let me know below! Also, tell me which one of these is your favourite!

Find me on these sites:

My Blog- http://delightfulbookreviews.blogspot...
Huffington Post-

Until next time :)

Thursday, 4 February 2016

'Red Caps: New Fairy Tales for Out of the Ordinary Readers' by Steve Berman (***.5)

Hello readers! Today I have a 3.5* book review for you, of Steve Berman's Red Caps- a fantastic book of short stories, which are modern fairytales and feature interesting, complex and beautifully created LGBTQ+ characters. As you may know, I am a HUGE fan of short story collections and fairy tales, so I was stoked to be sent a copy of Red Caps! I was kindly sent Red Caps by the author in exchange for an honest review :)

Intrigued? Here's the blurb...

Red Caps might be a rock band. Or they might be something more sinister, a fey source of sounds that are but the backdrop to thrills and misadventures. These thirteen stories provide readers jaded by the traditional, Old World fairy tales with tempting new stories that will entice bored readers from their suburban ennui. Closets are waiting to be explored. Escape from work camp leads to a dangerous encounter on a wet road. That high school year book is magical and might be mocking you...or helping you find love. And isn't love one of the central premises of the fairy tale? These teenage boys and girls need not fear that their love has no worth, because Steve Berman has written for them princesses who love maidens and adorkable students who have wondrous and smart boyfriends. Readers can be assured that, if the tale does not end happily, it ends most memorably.

As the book was an American edition, I LOVED the size of the book and the wonderfully floppy pages. Luckily enough for me, the inside of the book was just as beautiful as the outside. From the first page, I fell in love with Berman's writing and the way he created such fantastic scenes and characters. Unusually for a YA book, Berman's short stories featured such an amazingly diverse range of characters- different sexual orientations, races, religions and genders. This was so refreshing as I'm so used to reading about straight, white people in YA- and Red Caps completely contravened this. 

I absolutely loved ALL of the characters, and for a change they also appeared like young adults- not too young, not too old. It appeared as if Berman really understood young people, and wanted to treat their feelings, lives and experiences with respect. All of the stories had weight and meaning, and also there was always the little twist of magic and supernaturalism (as they were fairytales) in between. In each story, Berman grapples with contemporary issues, and what it's like to grow up in a world that is not always accepting of each individual. The result is a fantastic set of YA short stories, that are better than the 'old fairy tales' in the sense that they make 'being different' that much more exciting. 

To be perfectly honest, I enjoyed some stories more than others, and that is why I gave this book 3.5 stars. Although I recognised that this was a book of modern fairytales, I actually preferred the stories with limited supernaturalism. That might be because I prefer contemporary to fantasy any day, but I also found it easier to connect to the story and the characters, when the story was like your average contemporary YA. However, I did finish every story, and I came away at the end of the book having thoroughly enjoyed the collection as a whole :) Also, can I just point out that this book has ILLUSTRATIONS?! Gorgeous ones at that. I really wish YA as a genre included more illustrations, because the illustrations in Red Caps really brought this book to life.

I would highly recommend Steve Berman's Red Caps if you love fairytales, if you want to get into reading short stories, or if you fancy reading something a bit different, with characters you are sure to adore.

Buy Red Caps: New Fairy Tales for Out of the Ordinary Readers here:

Check out Steve Berman here:

Until next time :)

Tuesday, 2 February 2016

How I Organise My Reading...

Hello readers, and welcome to another weird and wonderful blog post where I write about things you probably won't even care about.

Just kidding! But hopefully you will actually find this interesting. I love reading posts like this so my hope above all hopes is that you enjoy reading this too <3

On a side note, today is the first day of my second semester at university, and I AM FINDING IT VERY HARD TO COPE WITH SO 
FAR. Seriously, I'm only one lecture down and I am already sitting in the Students Union with a very large coffee and a pessimistic attitude towards all the reading I've got to do this semester.

And talking of reading, today I thought I would write about how I organise my reading. A lot of my life revolves around reading; I am a book blogger (so that involves reading, obvs), I write (so I need to read to get inspiration, also obvs) and I study English Literature and Creative Writing at university (more reading- what a surprise!) so obviously I have a lot to read. I feel like I've said reading a lot so far in this post. Sorry.

But obviously, with all this reading to do (sorry) it's really important that I prioritise and organise the books I have to get through. It may seem obvious that my university reading comes first, as I am paying £9,000 to read them, but there are also publication dates and blog tours and so many other things to take into consideration when it comes to planning what books I will read next. Recently, I have acquired a huge number of ARCS and also my semester two reading list, so I have tried to read two books at a time but it really doesn't work for me. I like to be completely invested in one book, and reading two at a time just confuses and annoys me. 

So I've written some tips below in case you are struggling to organise your reading, or are aiming to get through that TBR pile or your school or university reading list that little bit quicker. Enjoy!

1. Have a TBR shelf.

Unfortunately I don't have a picture to show you of my current TBR shelf (as I am in Manchester and not in London), but it seriously does help to create a space on your bookshelf, even if it is just one shelf, of all the books you want to get through ASAP. Limit it to around ten books so you don't get too overwhelmed. Having the books you really want to read in front of you does allow you to focus on your reading goal and doesn't overwhelm you by facing a whole bookcase of books you'll never get through.

2. Prioritise!

Sometimes it's not a smart idea to read the books you are really excited about first and then leave the ones that look a tad dull to the last minute. This applies to both school/university reading and also books on your TBR you should read but have just put off for so long. I like to read the books that I am least looking forward to/have put off for a long time first, so I zoom through them quickly and then can read the books I actually really want to read!

3. Make use of every minute.

The thing I have learned since I became a book blogger and have read a load more books than I ever did before was to make use of every minute. Instead of scrolling through Facebook or Instagram on the bus or lazy mornings in bed, I now pick up a book and I find then that I can finish reading it a lot quicker. Even if you read for an extra twenty minutes a day, you will notice a huge difference!

4. Don't be afraid to say no.

If you are reading this and you are a book blogger, you will know the struggle of receiving endless emails from publishers and publicists eager to send you books, but you just know that your TBR pile is a towering giant monster and you won't be able to get around to another new book for ten million years. The trick is to not be afraid to say no; a large majority of the time, publishers/publicists won't be offended and will still continue to offer you books when you have more space on your shelves and more time for reading!

5. Don't pressurise yourself.

Now I know this sounds a bit contradictory (considering the first few paragraphs of this blog post), but there is more to life than reading. I know right?! Odd. Anyway, it's alright to slack on your reading. Seriously, it is. Only read if you're enjoying yourself and if it's what you want to do; reading should not be stressful or unenjoyable. If you're feeling uninspired, watch some Netflix or FaceTime a friend. Tackle that TBR pile at your own pace :)

I hope you guys enjoyed this blog post! Leave me a comment down below on how you organise your reading- I would love to know.

Huffington Post-


Until next time :)