Yesterday I got in to my pretty, shiny (it had just been washed the day before) car to go to church. I was feeling pretty good about myself since I was fifteen minutes earlier and the weather had changed from constant rain to a dull sun.
I turned the key in the ignition, felt the car vibrate and then heard a sound of my nightmares. The awful crank of a car NOT starting. I stared at my dashboard in shock. NO! NO NO NO!
My dad had the habit of parking my automatic car in Neutral. Did I start the car on Neutral? Nope, I checked. And the radio was working so whatever this fault was, it was not the battery.
Fear was fast making it’s way around my body. Something was wrong with the car. And whatever IT was. I already knew I would not be able to pay for it without suffering for the rest of the month.
Here’s the thing- I am pretty good when it comes to my money. However this year I chose to do a course online in Digital Marketing and I used any extra income of mine to pay off this course.
After nine painful hours of trying to track down a mechanic on a Sunday, we managed to locate one. He agreed to look at the car and confirmed that there was water damage.
Please let us take a minute to appreciate this irony. I took advantage of the rain to wash the car and that was what caused the car to not start.
After trying repeatedly to start the car, he finally managed to fix it and charged me R350.
Don’t get me wrong. I was glad that it was nothing serious and R350 is not much compared to the thousands I imagined spending on the car.
However it certainly dampens my spirit that I do not have any extra cash for the month ahead (which is still four days away).
Moral of the story: Save for a rainy day. They may take a while to come but even sunny Durban has them.
Louise receives a Facebook invitation from her childhood classmate Maria Weston. But Maria Weston is dead. Or atleast that is what everyone else thinks. Maria and Louise were the closest of friends back in high school before Louise abandoned her to join the popular crowd. Louise is well-aware of what happened the last night Mara was seen. Louise is part of the group that played an awful prank on Maria before she died. But there was no body found. Could Maria actually be alive? As Louise starts to gets creepy messages from Maria’s Facebook account she is more and more convinced that Maria might be back and looking for revenge. This was am intriguing read that I devoured in one sitting. There were countless plot twists which I enjoyed immensely. If you are looking for an unpredictable read, I strongly suggest this one.
2019 looks to be a great year in books with several of my favourite authors releasing new reads. Here are the books I am most excited for:
King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo- I devoured the “Grishaverse” books as well as the “Six of Crows” series. It has been too long since I read a book set in this universe and I CANNOT WAIT for this book to release.
Devil’s Daughter by Lisa Kleypas- I love anything by Lisa Kleypas especially if it is historical. Interested in historical romance? You can read a snippet of “Devil’s Daughter” here.
Two Can Keep a Secret by Karen M. McManus- “One of Us is Lying” was one of my favourite mysteries of all-time so I cannot wait to read this.
Again But Better by Christine Riccio- Book vlogger Christine Riccio releases her debut novel and if it is even a fraction as funny as she is, we are all in for a treat.
Finale by Stephanie Garber- Stephanie Garber’s “Caraval” series will finally come to an end with “Finale”. Personally while I have enjoyed this series, I cannot wait. I have questions that I need answered about Dante and his past.
The Everlasting Rose by Dhonielle Clayton- Picking up from the cliffhanger ending where most of my favourite characters (and one character I absolutely detested) were on the run, a resistance is building up. I love books about a team of people resisting the usual order. There is just something about people getting together to fight and overthrow the usual social order that makes me feel warm and cozy.
The Beautiful by Renee Ahdieh- Renee Ahdieh tackles vampires in New Orleans in this novel and I am SO HERE FOR IT! I adore Renee Ahdieh’s writing and world-building so I just know that this is going to be a great read.
Queen of Ruin by Tracy Banghart- “Grace and Fury” was impossible to put down and I cannot wait to see how the story continues in this next book.
What books are you most excited for in 2019? Let me know below.
New year. New books. This year instead of visiting the bookstore for New Years Day, I decided to try and tackle my own books. Of course, I did go to the bookstore eventually but it was a tough day and I needed the retail therapy. Here are the books that I am currently reading this month:
Welcome to the Real World by Lauren Berger- I genuinely feel like this book is life-changing. I am about 20% into it and I already signed up for a Digital Marketing course, gone back to the gym, started eating healthy AND scheduled all of my book reviews for the month #ProductiveBeast
Bright We Burn by Kiersten White- I bought this book as a Christmas treat for myself. I stopped reading it the day before I went back to work and now I have just not managed to pick it up. Probably because I skipped to the end and I was not happy with the ending (I have been doing that for most of my books recently).
Tarnished City (audiobook) by Vic James- This is SOO good and I am so sad that I only get to listen to it to and from work.
Queen of Shadows by Sarah J Maas- another great read that I put down and never picked back up. I should just walk around with a book glued to my face.
What are you reading this month? Have you read any of the above? I’d love to know below.
Lowen Ashleigh and Jeremy Crawford meet at the site of a horrific accident. The two of them connect over this unfortunate event as well the tragedies that have struck them in their lives.
Jeremy hires Lowen to ghost-write a series that his now injured wife cannot complete. Lowen, who is unable to turn down the money due to her financial struggles, agrees and moves in to the Crawford home.
Lowen’s plan is simply- sort through Verity Crawford’s notes and get out as soon as possible. However she stumbles across a chilling autobiography written by Verity. This story paints a very different picture of who Verity is as well as the day her daughter died.
As Jeremy and Lowen grow closer, she considers whether or not to tell him the truth. Jeremy may be devoted to his wife but surely that would change once he finds out who she really is.
This was a creepy read that I devoured in one setting. “Verity” is well-written with an intriguing plot. I could not read fast enough and was left speechless at the end. I definitely recommend this to anyone who wants a memorable read.
Yeva longs for the freedom of the forests. So when her father loses all of his money and the family is forced to move to an old hunting cabin, Yeva is secretly relieved.
She spends her days hunting food for her family while her father tries to track down a mysterious beast that he believes is watching them.
When Yeva’s father goes missing, she goes after him determined to capture the beast herself.
This was a really intriguing read that I finished in a matter of hours. I was unable to put this down and enjoyed this book thoroughly!
My only issue was that it fell a bit flat towards the ending. The last bits of this book was not really believable however I enjoyed that Yeva was not an ordinary “Beauty”. She is a skilled hunter and this is demonstrated throughout the book. I also enjoyed the stories and myths of the forests.
This is a great read for anyone who enjoys fairytale retellings.
Told in two (very confusing) timelines, “Monday’s Not Coming” follows the story of Monday and her best friend, Claudia.
Claudia returns from a vacation worried about Monday since she has not replied to any of Claudia’s letters. Claudia gets even more worried when Monday does not show up for school. Monday ALWAYS shows up for school.
No one seems to notice or even care that Monday is not around any more. Monday’s family are being evasive about her location, the teachers assume that she was pulled out of school but no one is investigating where she is. No one besides Claudia. However as Claudia tries to locate her best friend, she is warned away by Monday’s family members who all start to act very suspicious. They all say that Monday is not coming. But where IS Monday???
This was a well-written read that I enjoyed. The timelines were confusing and seemed to make no sense until the very end of the book.
*SPOILER*I thought that the plot twist at the end was overdone *END SPOILER* but this was an amazing read that simply cemented Tiffany D. Jackson as one of my new favourite authors.
Definitely give this a try if you are looking for a book that will draw you in and not let go.
I cannot believe that it took me so many years and so many attempts to finally finish this book. I enjoyed it immensely and cannot wait for the next book in the series.
“Heir of Fire” follows Celaena as she travels to a new land in an attempt to figure out precisely what the King is plannng. Instead she is given a task- she can have an answer to all of her questions if she unleases her Fae side and her full Fae potential.
Meanwhile Chaol and Dorian are both mourning over Celaena’s departure and they are barely speaking. Chaol does not want to involved himself in magic while Dorian is finding it increasingly difficult to hold back his magic. It isn’t long before both of them are forced to choose a side in the upcoming war.
This was a really intriguing read and I could not get enough. “Heir of Fire” introduces new characters, new plotlines and new worlds. It was well-written with great world-building and I cannot wait to finish this series! If you haven’t started this series yet and you’re a fan of fantasy books, definitely give this a go!
It’s been two years since I took the leap and bought myself a domain and hosting. Till today, I still believe that this was the best decision I had ever made. Here are some reasons why you should consider self-hosting your blog if you haven’t already.
1) You have greater control over your blog- You can have ads (and control the ads that appear on your page) as well as write sponsored content which some blog hosts don’t allow.
2) Plug-ins galore- there’s a plug-in for everything. Stopping spam, managing SEO, Pinterest, torturing your jackass ex. Okay that last one is still a work in progress but there’s no end to the amount of fun plug-ins available for a self-hosted blog.
3) It looks more professional/People take you more seriously- sadly people tend to find self-hosted blogs and their bloggers as more serious about blogging. I hate this stereotype (especially since I know so many great blogs that aren’t self-hosted) but it’s difficult to combat. Also I kinda like seeing co.za in my blog URL. It makes ME feel professional.
Is your blog self-hosted? Why or why not? I’d love to know your views on hosting.
1) Anything by Cal Newport- if you haven’t noticed already, I’m a bit obsessed with Cal Newport’s books. He makes college so much easier with his advice. While reading his books I saw my grades pick up instantly.
2) Leave Your Mark by Aliza Licht- this book is described as a “mentorship” and I cannot agree more. Aliza Licht has great advice. This is a book that you need to have highlighted or stick in post-its. From internships to starting a job, this book has it all.
3) All Work, No Pay by Lauren Berger – this book is an invaluable asset to anyone looking for an internship. Personally I found this book to be excellent help when dealing with cover letters and resumes.
4) Leadership and Soft Skills for Students by Cary Green- I like to think of this book as a how-to guide to success. Cary Green presents real solutions that work. I’m not going to lie- I believe in this book because several of the points covered here are things I believe in for my daily life. College students and high school students will both greatly benefit from this book.