Book Review- The Girls by Emma Cline

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Title: The Girls
Author: Emma Cline
Publisher: Chatto & Windus
Genre: Fiction

As I said in a previous post this book had me sucked in, hook, line and sinker, I’m actually a bit upset that it’s now finished. I personally could have kept reading this book even if it was double the amount of pages that it was (355 to be exact!).

Main character Evie is a young girl that is trying to find her way in the world, trying to discover what life is about. Her best friend Connie is your typical teen, showing off to boys, reading teen mags and not much else. Evie yearns for more…

That “more” shows up in the form of Suzanne and crew. One day Evie is sitting in the park and notices Suzanne, she is not stanning but stands out to Evie, her clothes, her hair, her demeanor, it’s exhilarating. After that day all Evie wants is to run into Suzanne again and she does. In a shopping trip she runs into Suzanne, whom is getting kicked out of a grocery store because of stealing in the past, Evie sees this as her chance and purchases Suzanne her toilet paper.

Not long after Evie has a fight with her mother, and is peddling along on her bike when it’s chain breaks and she’s so angry, in tears, on the ground. When a van pulls up, out pops one of Suzanne’s crew, Donna. Evie is shuffled into the van along with her bike and driven out to a commune, a bit dirty, a bit chaotic… Evie is fascinated by the carefree life that is lived out by this crew.

This group of carefree are headed by the leader that is Russell. I wannabe musician that puts a spell on all whom he comes into contact with. With all the right words, the right touches, Evie has the spell cast upon her.

This is a story about the girls of the Manson cult and how they were under a spell, obviously it’s not excuse but it’s fascinating to think anyone can be so hooked that they feel they have to follow someone whom is so obviously messed up.

It follows Evie before the murders, during the murders and after the murders and how she felt about them and how even after she still held a special feeling for Suzanne, that same buzz.

A fascinating read that was a stand out debut novel for Emma Cline, I’m really interested in where her writing is headed from here, however I highly doubt “The Girls” can be topped!

Rating: 4 and a half stars out of 5!

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Bellabox Feb 2017 review.

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Bellabox is a monthly beauty subscription box that has a range of samples of beauty products included for the subscriber to try out and see if they’d purchase any of the full sized products! I’ve been a subscriber on and off over the years, it’s good but I think it could be better. Anyhow lets check out the Feb box…
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The February box was themed “beauty inside out”!

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Because after Christmas and New Year we probably need to work on the inside to look beautiful outside!

Firstly it included 4 samples of Twinings Morning Tea sachets, these are available in 4 limited edition designs by inspiring Australian Woman. Those woman are Nicole Kidman, Carrie Bickmore, Emma Freedman and Samantha Harris.
The reason behind these limited designs is that one will remain on the shelves after a vote is taken place and 10c from every pack will go towards the inspiring woman’s charity of choice.
To take place in voting go to twinings.com.au and vote for your favourite design and charity!
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An interesting product in this box was the eye majic instant eye shadow, it’s basically a stick on eyeshadow. Kind of. It’s a patch you place on your eyelid, hold for 4 seconds and slide off and dah dah you have eyeshadow! It reminds me of those stick on tattoos children use, and i’m really freaked out by it. I can’t do eyeshadow, I just end up looking like I blobbed eyeshadow in my eyelid creases and didn’t put any effort in but I don’t think these will chance my mind. I would feel like a pre teen using these! A big no-no Bellabox!

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Please explain why?

A favourite of mine in this box is NYX Baked Blush, the shade I received is Spanish Rose and it’s a subtle pink shade that will provide a sheer finish or can be built up stronger for a more intense look. I love blush because it gives my skin some colour so no doubt will be breaking out this blush a lot in the future.

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Another favourite in this box is a sample of Cetaphil Oil Free moisturising lotion. Cetaphil is a great brand for those with sensitive skin, it doesn’t irritate and is Fragrance free. I’ll be using this one under my make up to keep my skin moisturised and a big plus is the SPF 30!
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There is 2 Klorane products in this box, a shampoo with Quinine and B vitamins and a conditioner with pomegranate. What is Quinine? It seems to be some plant. The shampoo is meant to help with thinning hair and hair loss. I won’t be trying these two as I have used Klorane products before and had a reaction that felt like my head was burning and it was incredibly itchy. It lasted for weeks and it was caused by a shampoo. Not Happy Jan!
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Take care of your skin with the sample of Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Sunscreen Lotion with SPF 50+. Given the amount of time I’ve spent in the sun lately i really should be using a sunscreen with a high SPF rating so it’s like BellaBox read my mind or my skin should I say! I use Neutrogena facial washes and they seem really good so hopefully this doesn’t disappoint. It says its light weight and non-greasy so that sounds pretty fantastic to my skin. I hate sunscreen that makes it look like you just rubbed oil all over your face, that’s not an attractive look!
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The last product is two AVON Anew Youth extending creams. With Ocean extracts Of micro- algae and sea grape this product repairs the invisible damage that occurs under the skin, helping to fight skin ageing and is said to target up to 9 years of damage. That means I should start to look like a teenager if I use this product! What I wouldn’t give to look like a teenager again.
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That concludes the Feb box, some goodies, some not so great. The only issue I have with Bellabox is that sometimes it’s a little bit repetitive, and where is the fun in trying the same products months in and months out.
If it all sounds pretty great to you and you’d love to give Bellabox a go, pop on over to bellabox.com.au and for $17.95 a month you’ll receive 5+ beauty samples to try!

These are my own opinions and images, I was in no way sponsored by bellabox for this post.

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Currently… The week that is Feb 20-26!

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Lately I’ve been wracking my brain about what to write about and I thought why not do a round up of what i’m up to this week, what i’m currently doing, reading and thinking!

I’ve got a few other ideas in the works as to what to publish on this blog so keep an eye on what is coming! Lots of different things that I’ve never tried before!
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Back to this week…
Currently reading- The Girls by Emma Cline
This book seems to have a lot of hype behind it, everywhere I look someone is reading it so when I saw it at the library I thought i’d check it out. (Continuing with the hype it’s already got a hold on it which means someone is wanting to read it after me!).
It’s the debut novel by author Emma Cline, a story that follows young Evie whom comes across this entralling dark haired young lady, Suzanne and a group in a park one day, Evie is hooked. She cannot wait til the next time she sees this lady, she’s captured by not only how she looks but how she dresses, how she carries herself. The next moment she spots Suzanne is at the supermarket, Suzanne just wants toilet paper, the shop owner starts screaming telling Suzanne to get out, she’s banned from stealing. That right there should be a warning sign that Suzanne is not someone to get mixed up with however Evie is still hooked and purchases the toilet paper for Suzanne! Evie is picked up by the group of girls one day when her bike has broken down, she is then taken by bus to meet the group leader Russell!
I’m not that far into this book but it’s interesting, it’s based on the story of the women behind Charles Manson so it’s about to get really interesting!

Also reading this week- Frankie magazine March/ April issue
I especially loved the story on the kids and how they respond things in this world. The girl with the brother that tells her about “the man that comes in your sleep” made me laugh. That poor kid!
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Currently listening too…
Tegan and Sara and The Darkness!
Need I say more, Do I ever listen to much else, also with the tours coming up I can barely contain my excitement.
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Currently Learning… Don’t trust people, some people are just users that will kick you to the wayside when you stop putting their bins away! What the? Seriously when you do nothing all day and can’t put your bins in, i’m sorry you are just lazy!

Currently Loving…
The Piggie Girls! Thumper, Harley and Bambi! I might do a post on the guinea pigs because there is a bit of a story behind them. They all have different personalities and that baby in the middle, Harley, is not a fan of letting anyone sleep. It’s all wheek, wheek, wheek!
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Currently Missing…
Granddad. Sometimes I think of something he said or whether he’d be proud of things i’ve done and I just think it’d be cool if he was still around.
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Currently Winning…
The novel “A Street Cat Named Bob” and a double pass to see the film!
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As soon as I heard about this story I wanted to read and see the movie so I was thrilled to win this prize. I won through Hachette books facebook page, the question was why does your pet make you happy (or something along those lines), I posted a picture of Thumper and wrote about how she always makes me smile and does silly things!

What are you up to this week? What are you reading? What’s this weeks lesson you’ve learnt?

The hobby that is… Comping!

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Many people know I enter competitions, it’s a hobby i’ve had for many years and has paid off many times over!
Why do I enter competitions? Truthfully I love getting mail, but not that crappy, boring kind so comping means I get surprises in the mail! It also means I barely ever have to pay to go see a movie ( I mean going to the movies cost so much already, so if I can get past paying why not?). It also means I can gift things to my favourite people and that is something I enjoy!
Let me break down comping with advantages and disadvantages:-

Advantages
– Getting mail that isn’t something I’ve ordered or a bank statement! The element of surprise!
– Freebies. Getting something for nothing is always fun. Getting something you’ve always wanted for nothing is even better!
– It’s productive and educational, ever entered a 25 WOL competition? They rack your brain and actually make you think. I’m getting much better at these and I find they really make me proud when I love my answer.
– Been able to give my family and friends special things I otherwise wouldn’t be able to give them. Recently I won a $1000 Myer gift card, ended up gifting mum with a turntable and gifted my sister with some Toms shoes, and a sheet set! My dad got free petrol with a $100 petrol voucher, neighbours have seen numerous movies for free, and my partner got a $270 pair of nikes with some Rebel sport vouchers I won. Ultimately this is the reason I find comping so rewarding, giving back!
– Friends, I have met some super lovely people through entering competitions. One friend in particular messages me when something comes up he thinks i’d like, I try to do the same!

Disadvantages
– It’s a dog eat dog world with comping, people get jealous and will try to take prizes off you at any cost! I have been kicked out of comping groups just because I am friends with another comper that a bunch of jealous ladies don’t like! They will bitch about you behind your back or even to your face if you win something they want!
– People will ask you to win things for them. This is particulary annoying because it’s a game of luck and I can’t magically make luck work in my favour. It also takes a lot of time and effort.
– Dry spells, you don’t just start winning straight away and can go through dry spells where you are putting in lots of effort but winning nothing. It’s a bit off putting but dry spells don’t last forever!

Ultimately I try to block out those disadvantages and focus on the advantages.
If you are looking for a hobby that is fun, and something you can do at your own pace comping is wonderful, but if you want a easy, quick payoff it might not be for you.

Have you ever won anything? What has been your favourite prize?

 

Welcome, 2017!

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2017 has kicked off! It’s firing through already with great force but i’m excited about what this year will bring.
I’m not doing New Years Resolutions because I think they just set you up to fail, however I have goals that i’m going to kick in the butt this year!

Goal 1- Read more, I don’t want to put a number of books I want to read but I just want to read a lot more, escape to new worlds and enjoy reading. I started the year off with “Little Face” by Sophie Hannah and I am loving it. I also joined the library so am enjoying all that offers.

Goal 2- Get healthy, I wouldn’t say i’m unhealthy but it can always be improved!.

Goal 3- Indulge my pets, I’ve ordered a C & C cage for the guinea pigs and am really excited about putting it together and adding cute things that the girls will enjoy. 2017 might even bring a new piggie to the family!
I’d also like to spoil Sophie with some special treats!

Goal 4- Write more, Whether that be my blog, letters, writing competitions, I just want to write more.

Goal 5- Competitions, I love my comping hobbie and really want to indulge more into that (Is that even possible?). 2016 held some wonderful wins, among my favourites were the slow cooker, $1000 myer voucher and a Dolmio hamper! What will come this year? Ahhh the possibilities!

A new year just feels like a fresh start, time to start over and get motivated and I’m feeling very positive about 2017!

Goodbye, 2016!

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Today marks off December 31 2016, so we say goodbye to 2016!
What a year it has been. It’s had it’s ups and some major downs but it really just flew by in a flash. This year gave me a better grip of who I am as a person and made me more confident.
2016 had some major loses that will never be forgotten, not just in the celebrity world, Bowie, why oh why did you have to go? Prince, What the? Weren’t you immortal? Gene Wilder? Huh? and most recently Carrie Fisher, Debbie Reynolds and George Michael! This evenly I hope everyone is spared.
However the biggest loss I encountered this year was the passing of my granddad. Alan Alexander Petersen, a local celebrity and all round best teller of stories. He was such a hero in my eyes and always had a new story of his early life that would leave me hanging on the edge of my seat.
This year also marked the passing of my 2 rodent children, Spencer and Remi and Mr Frankie the Fish!  It’s amazing how much they become a piece of the family and leave a lasting impression!

With every negative, has to comes a postive, right?
So with some close passings we had to have some happiness come through and ended up with our adorable guinea pig, Thumper whom from the moment we saw her, I think she and I both knew she was coming home with me to be spoiled.
2016 also came with some lasting friendships that I cherish and couldn’t imagine ever ending. Even if those friendships involve some nights drinking far to much and all becoming a bit tipsy!
I rediscovered my love of reading again this year and read some total of 26 books. Some I loved, some were so- so and others I totally hated (American Psycho!). It fueled my fire to set up my book shelves and put together a small library, which I am loving! All the books, neatly standing side by side, all the other lands I can visit just from picking a book!

I’m looking forward to putting 2016 behind me and starting a fresh, 2017 looks to be full of promise, opportunities and a whole heap of possibilities!

What was 2016 like for you? Did you have a life changing year or are you happy it’s ending?

Kids just aren’t right for me!

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It seems there comes a time in life when everyone just expects you to pop a child out, especially if you’ve been in a relationship for longer than a day!
The questions started years ago for me, “When are you going to have a baby?”, “Time is running out for you”,  “As you get older it’s harder”, Lah Lah Lah.
Like it’s not a question of what I want, just that society expects me to procreate.

Well guess what world? It’s not for me, I do not want kids.
Sure kids are cute, innocent and make me laugh but it’s not something I need in my life.

Why?

I am enough without a mini me- I don’t need a kid to prove I am enough. I am enough without a kid. Some people seem to have this absurd idea that having a child is going to fulfil every aspect of their life. My life is good why bring something else into it?

Mental health- Mental health is a major issue that runs in my family. Mental health is genetic, need I say more? I can’t even explain how terrible I would feel if I had a child and it suffered through the mental health issues I have. Sure I’d be able to help out but I am an emotional type and it would break me to see my flesh and blood suffer.

Sleep- If I don’t get my sleep I get grumpy, grumpy to a degree where i’d possibly go mental. Refer to previous comment about mental health. I must sleep.

I’m selfish- I enjoy my time, my money. I treasure sitting down to read a book, I mean really reading a book, taking in every word, page, chapter and delving into it (currently reading American Psyco!), Watching a tv show thats not for small eyes, Long walks, my space… All these things would be compromised. If you really think about it, it all relates back to the mental health thing.

It’s not that I have a insane hate for kids, they are adorable, funny,  innocent. I enjoy spending time with friend’s kids and I wouldn’t say I am terrible at looking after them.
It is just not for me to have my own and that is ok.