Saturday, 26 November 2016

Holding up The Universe | | Review

After the whirlwind of emotions All The Bright Places was, Jennifer Niven has just published her second YA novel with Penguin Random House. I knew after reading ATBP I would read anything and everything by Niven, ugh. she is absolutely fantastic and her words are beautiful!

Let's start with the cover, Holding up The Universe has the most gorgeous cover, it's simple and definitely pleases my aesthetic and has a place on my bookshelves among my other books with white spines. Dunno what it is about white spines but my books appear to be white quite often. Probably influenced by hours of Pinterest browsing. 

I have so many thoughts about this book, if this appears to be a word vomit blog post then so be it. Libby, our main character, who within the first 15 pages my thoughts were 'I am rooting for you'. There's something about Libby, she's incredibly confident and accepting of herself, finally. Just wanna dance with her and be happy about life despite its shittiness sometimes u no.

Libby has issues with her weight, after being titled 'America's Fattest Teen' and having to be carried out of her house by a crane she is accepting herself for who she is. Being positive about your body is a message that Niven flows through the book fantastically, for young influential girls and boys it's a very important message to be portrayed.  There's some beautiful paragraphs about dealing with weight issues that will make you think HELL MY BODY IS GREAT I DON'T CARE WHAT YOU THINK.

"Our bodies are wondrous, miraculous things, and we shouldn't ever feel ashamed of them!"

Enter Jack Masselin with an incurable condition called prosopagnosia which means he can't recognise people's faces. Imagine coming home from school and not recognising your mum or brother? It must be so frustrating for Jake, you can feel his frustration as he walks through school hallways identifying his friends by what he calls their 'identifiers' which is something that stands out about them, whether that's crazy hair, their height or tone of voice. Jack seems to be a bit of an asshole, you'll grow to love him despite the trouble he gets himself into. Not only is Jack a bit of a jerk, so is his friend Seth. Both assholes. Ugh. And his on/off girlfriend Caroline is a girl I would have completely avoided in high school at all costs. 

Libby punches Jack which then turns into an unlikely friendship/relationship. Here we go. My absolute favourite part of YA is romance, despite the cringe and cheese, I just love it. Can't get enough of it. The young pair get off to a bad start but by the time Libby accompanies Jack to a research centre to find out more about his condition she thinks she might actually like him. And he thinks he might like her too. Adorable. Love it. So much.

Favourite character? Dusty, Jack's little brother. Just adorable and going against gender stereotypes. Likes the Jackson 5. Isn't afraid to wear a purse. Love him. Can I have him as my brother?

Favourite moment (s)? The car rides Libby and Jack share. Libby's dad and how wonderfully kind he is.

If you do one thing today, please read this amazing ya novel, fabulous, you won't regret it. You'll cry, laugh and fall in love with Niven's characters.

Friday, 4 November 2016

Autumn voices

Isn't there something about autumn that makes you feel at peace with the world? Like when you're stepping through piles of leaves nothing else matters except the crunches under foot and the colours.
Oh the colours. The colours of autumn make me so so excited. The trees are beautiful yet they are dying. Why do we find death in this form so beautiful? The pavements are gold, fire orange and red. And when it rains the leaves stick like paper mache.
The greenery has left for the year, it will be back in spring though I promise. It's refreshing like a snake shedding its skin, I can dust off bad thoughts.

Autumn is my new year. Autumn motivates me. I want to write about everything. On the bus I like to peer out and watch the colours change. I like to watch the transition from thin t-shirts to chunky knitted jumpers and hats and scarves. It's cosy. 
Autumn brings the warmth of hot drinks, especially all those new flavours that come with new seasons. Pumpkin spice and everything nice. 
I am a girl wishing she lived in a small thatched cottage in the open countryside surrounded by falling leaves and hills. Oh a girl can dream about her future home with an open fire and mugs of hot chocolate. 
The air is crisp, sharp and breathtaking. Maybe it's the beauty of nature that takes my breath away. Noon is warm but chilly and I have to tug my sleeves over my hands. I forgot my gloves. My ears are a little cold, I think I need a hat. 
Fog eats the city, even at midday the buildings are half dissolved in smoky fog and cars drive slow. But there's those autumn days where it's blindingly warm and you think maybe the season hasn't changed at all. The clocks have turned back, Halloween has passed and the nights are darker than before.