One Page More! E02: Crooked Kingdom & Other Heist Books


One more book, one more page…one page more!

And THE SECOND EPISODE HAS LANDED. This one was an absolute blast to record, and it ended up being longer than the first one haha. One Page More! is a monthly podcast in which I and other bookish/bloggerly guests talk about YA, musicals, and social issues. This episode involves a lot of flailing about Crooked Kingdom and various other cool heist books. (There is a spoilery section for Crooked Kingdom at the end, so DON’T GO THERE IF YOU HAVEN’T READ IT. I say this about 20 times during the actual podcast but I seriously don’t want to spoil stuff for people, because that sucks immensely.)

As ever, I’d love to hear your feedback! I do hope that you enjoy listening as much as I enjoyed making this. And if you do think you might like to feature in a future then episode then please let me know — it would be fabulous to have you.😀

Three is the Magic Number // giveaway + blog party!

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This Thursday my blog turns three. THREE! I know, I know, these are crazy times. And because three is a super cool and aesthetic number and I think I am basically superhuman for making it this far, there is virtual CAKE! And a GIVEAWAY! (Yes, all the caps and exclamation marks are here today. I am in an excitable mood. *coughs*)

It feels very strange to have come this far… I didn’t really start out thinking I was going to keep blogging. I just kept writing posts, and then it sort of happened. My blogging style has also changed massively — I mean, even from my blogoversary last year it has changed! I feel like that comes hand in hand with me growing as a person, though. (This is getting really deep and emotional. I DIDN’T MEAN FOR IT TO BE THIS WAY. Never mind. *hands out handkerchiefs for everyone*) It’s like I’m just sort of changing more and more every year… Like one of those annoying graphs where you have to draw the increasing curve. oh no we’re onto the science similes

I’ve continued to make loads of awesome new people over the last year, and I have also done fun stuff like:

  • Became very obsessed with musicals.
  • VISIT NEW YORK AAH !!! Which I am still flailing about, to be honest.
  • Go to more fun cons.
  • Listen to Lauren Aquilina’s first LP.
  • Read a ton of cool books including stuff like Radio Silence and Six of Crows and The Raven King.
  • Er…sort of did some writing? *shrinks away* I have still procrastinated a lot and I definitely haven’t completed a first draft. AH well.

But mostly I just talked to people who are 1000% cooler than me. So YAY THANKS FOR THAT GUYS.

giveaway time!

Esteemed people, the moment you’ve been waiting for… the pride of Mount Vernon, gEORGE WASHINGTON the actual giveaway! Once again I’ve decided that it would be really nice to have a bookish giveaway, because books are always good and spreading the bookish love is also always good.

The winner will recieve a book of your choice from The Book Depository up to the value of £12! And that includes preorders, hurrah. If you don’t know what book you would get then don’t worry, I’m happy to recommend some things ahaha. I decided to do this one using TBD again because it has free shipping to loads of countries and I wanted to try and make it more available to everyone🙂 (Also I am a smol person with limited money, alas.) So as long as The Book Depository ships to your country then you can enter, which hopefully should be most places. You can check here!


The giveaway will be open for two weeks from when I post this, yay. Once again thanks youu to everyone, and good luck!😀 Now you may take your virtual slice of cake, or if you don’t like cake then another confection. Because no one should go hungry at a blog party.😛

Brexit, Three Months On

It’s just over three months since the UK voted to Brexit, and whilst everything has changed, it also seems like nothing has changed. I’m just going back now to read my post-Brexit reaction, and whilst I’ve definitely cooled down a lot more now, a lot of my feelings there are the same. I am still scared. I am still angry. I am still upset. (And I am still half-pretending that this whole thing is one big nightmare. I honestly wish so Brexit had never happened, but there you go.)

I will admit that I’ve somewhat been avoiding the news a bit — especially over the summer holidays, when I was away a lot anyway. I’m definitely not feeling as bad as I was, but it’s just sort of…a looming cloud I don’t like to remind myself of. I’m very good at just ignoring things I want to go away! It feels kind of weird to be describing my own feelings right now, actually? I don’t see much of that. Maybe it’s just what I read. But usually politics and Brexit stuff is factual; like, what’s happening here and who said that. It literally is a massive shadow over me, though.

I’m also pretty lucky that it hasn’t yet affected me dramatically; after all, I live in London (one of the most pro-Europe areas) and I’m already pretty privileged. No one is coming up to me and telling me to go homeNo one is trying to attack me. I do still feel like the referendum vote was extremely emotion-driven — from what I’ve seen, it looks like people sort of just voted because they wanted immigrants to leave. (Or, like, to stop the oppression of the EU or whatever other crap is happening.)

Yet just this morning on the radio I heard as part of an announcement on our Brexit strategy that we would try to replicate previous business relationships as closely as possible. IF YOU JUST WANTED IT TO BE THE SAME THEN WE SHOULDN’T BLOODY BE LEAVING. *sighs* It just seems so stupid. On one hand: I don’t want everything to completely change. But on the other hand: if we just have a similar kinda thing to the European Economic Area or something, then what was the point in even Leaving? (Capital-L Leaving.) We’re just the same as before, but not getting to make any of the decisions.

Nothing MASSIVE has happening yet. Although a ton of stuff has also happened. We have an utterly new PM & Government and the Labour party is basically dying. There are some weird things happening with grammar schools which don’t particularly make sense to me, but I do go to a private school so I guess I’m a bit of a hypocrite. (I mean, although obviously I am SUPER grateful for my education, I sometimes wish I didn’t…) Whenever I see another bad thing, I think ‘at least [insert terrible event here]’ because apparently that is now a comfort to me. At least Andrea Leadsom didn’t win the Tory Leadership. (Oh my god, she wanted to get rid of same-sex marriage. I wanted to cry.) At least we are all still alive, at least my parents haven’t lost their jobs, at least the NHS hasn’t yet collapsed etc. etc.

Over the holidays I was reaing the Ron Chernow biography of Alexander Hamilton, and the passages about creating a new government really struck me. There was this whole thing about how he tried to create a system where there wasn’t a too big imbalance of power between executive and the people — this is so not the right phrasing but never mind. And about fear of populism and the mob ruling over what’s actually good in the long term. I mean, I’m not going to sit here making parallels about two subjects I’m not especially educated in, but it did make me think for a bit.

And it makes me really sad to hear the little anecdotes. Like apparently this uni one of my cousins works at won’t be receiving much funding anymore… It’s not Oxbridge or anything like that so the UK institutions give them far less in grants than the EU. And everything just feels a bit like a funeral; people just sort of come up and express their sadness and we all feel sad. A funeral with more black humour. I am basically only surviving this through black humour.

There will be some good things, I am still hoping! We’re not very far into this whole procedure yet. I mean, I don’t at all thinks it’s going to be a paradise… (If you hadn’t picked that up already.) But you never know. Less money going to farmers who make up a tiny percentage of people and all that. It’s a little hard to be positive because both my parents are basically just like AAAH WE’RE GOING TO DIE IF WE ACTUALLY LEAVE but I’m living through it haha.

Recently I’ve been trying to listen to world news a bit more, too, instead of the usual Radio 4 fare. (I like to have radio on in the background; being in a silent house alone is super uncomfortable for me.) This is DEFINITELY not the worst thing that could be happening to us. It feels pretty massive right now, but that’s right now — there are plenty of bigger things out there. I guess I’ll just continue on and see what happens.


My Harry Potter Life Tag

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Hey everyone! I haven’t done a tag in a while, and I’ve been having a lot of thoughts about Harry Potter lately, so I AM DOING A HARRY POTTER TAG. More specifically, a tag about my Harry Potter life which was created by the wonderful Michelle @ The Writing Hufflepuff. How it works is you pick four books — mine are Six of Crows, Radio Silence, Eleanor & Park and I’ll Give You the Sun — and they help determine stuff about what you’d be like in the Wizarding world.

1. your wand

Open book 1 at a random page. The first noun you see will be what your wand is made of.

My wand is apparently made of PAPERWORK. I love this. HA. I feel like it would be a really grumpy and misunderstood wand. (Shh. Of course I am giving it a personality.) Or just grumpy, because to be quite honest paperwork is a massive bore. Although I don’t know I couldn’t have got a super badass wand like a lockpick wand because HELLO Six of Crows. NEVER MIND I LOVE MY PAPERWORK WAND ANYWAYS.

2. your pet

Does book 2 have animals? One of those animals will now be your pet. If the book doesn’t have any animals, then I’m sorry but you’re petless.

BRIAN THE DOG IS MY PET YES YES THIS IS ALL GOOD. Although people who have read Radio Silence: you feel my pain, right? I may or may not have chosen this as book 2 specifically so I could see Brian again. *coughs* Of course not. Anyways, where even are the dogs at Hogwarts? Dogs are awesome. They would be awesome at Hogwarts. (Everything would be awesome at Hogwarts.)

3. your hogwarts house

Open book 3 at a random page. Whatever House you think the first character you see belongs to is your House.

I got Eleanor! I think Eleanor is firmly a Gryffindor, so I’ll head there too. And I love her so that’s all good. (Though never fear, I still have Ravenclaw blood in me too. However cool Eleanor is, I wouldn’t abandon you guys like that.

4. make your golden trio complete

Open book 4 at a random page. The first two names will be your best friends and complete your squad. If there’s only one name at said page, open another random page.

Well, er, for this one I got Guillermo Garcia and Jude’s mom. mum but that’s how the book spells it pfft Although the page was narrated by Jude so maybe she counts…? I mean, I think it’d be rather an odd trio considering the massive age gap but Guillermo Garcia is awesome. So at least I have that.😛

5. your head of house

Open book 1 at a random page. The first name you’ll see will be your Head of House.

YAS IT’S INEJ. I feel like Inej would be a really cool Head of House — although she’d definitely take House Points from us if we did bad stuff. I guess being fair isn’t too bad though. But YES that is a very good one. *nods*

6. your ‘draco malfoy’

Naturally you’ll need your arch nemesis/school rival. Open book 2 at a random page, the first name you’ll see will be your enemy.

Oh no, it’s Aled Last! *hugs* My tiny son, it shall be fine. We will get through this. We are definitely not going to be enemies forever.

7. your patronus

Open book 3 at a random page. The first living creature you’ll see will be your Patronus.

My Patronus is apparently Park. That’s cool. I can work with this. I mean, Park basically kind of is me. (Or at least we’re very similar).

8. will you win the house cup?

How many pages does book 4 have? That’s how many points you’ll House have at the end of the school year. If the book has more than 400 pages it will have won the Cup, congrats!

371 PAGES NOO SO CLOSE. Although obviously we are still coming in second. (Or maybe first. The first house might be, like, disqualified or something.)

Thanks so much to Michelle for creating this tag! I had a lot of fun doing it — even if I did end up with some weird choices haha. Don’t at all feel like you have to do it, but I’m tagging Em and Victoria!

On Banned Books & Censoring Teen Fiction

I’ve always had a lot of thoughts about censoring YA and children’s literature. For me, books covering subjects which are maybe less accepted in day-to-day life are so important. I’m a big believer in not banning books, especially kid’s ones, because very often those are ones which have very important messages. (Plus: if you ban a book, it just makes kids want to read it more. So obviously not a good tactic.)

Anyway. I once read an interview with an author who I will strategically not name saying that children’s innocence should be protected… and I’m just like NO. Books are not about protecting innocence. Books are not about sheltering kids from the world around them — because yes, there are bad things happening in the world. Death exists. I think that it is so, so important to learn about the existence of suffering because if you just wait until you’re an adult then YOU WILL KNOW NOTHING. It’s going to be a big shock when you discover that, you know, sometimes pain actually exists. Sometimes you will experience pain.

I so dislike the assumption that children’s and adult’s books must be completely separate — that I can’t deal with ‘adult’ books. I’m often very frustrated by the age restrictions that appear everywhere. (I used to add, like, 3 years to my age or whatever.) One of my friends has been turned away from looking at the YA section in a bookshop because the assistant thought she looked too young. You can’t pick and choose your audience simply based on age, because…people don’t work like that? WE’RE ALL REALLY DIFFERENT. Some are more ready to read things than others, and that’s 100% okay.

We don’t want to be pushed away from books. We don’t want you to tell us that we can’t read George Orwell because the sentence structure is too simple for our reading level. Newsflash: sometimes, like, you actually can’t just judge books using a machine? Sometimes there are complex ideas behind them? All this red tape just doesn’t make sense to me. I think it is important to let people know what is inside — for instance, The Bunker Diary by Kevin Brooks (whilst for me a fascinating book) has literally no indication of the horrors inside. And I think perhaps a little warning of that would be nice, because then people know what they’re getting into and they can make a decision for themselves about whether to read it.

But we can judge for ourselves what we are able to read. Kids & teens are sensible people! If something is making me upset then I will put the book down, or skip ahead a section. We’re good at knowing what’s appropriate for us; it isn’t just like watching a movie passively. You actively have to make the decision to keep reading.

The thing which sparked me to return to this post — which has been stewing in the back of my mind for ages — was a review marking a book with a bi MC for junior & senior high readers only. This cropped up on Twitter, and it was approximately the worst time for the magazine to publish this because HELLO BI AWARENESS WEEK. You might have already seen it going around twitter. But it is…wrong in so many ways. It’s not particular to this reviewer, though; sadly from my experience it’s a rather common theme that queer = mature. That makes me really sad. Like, according to this review I shouldn’t be reading this book. It definitely makes sense to stop bi teens from, like, actually reading about themselves for once. God forbid it give them a little hope.

I just. Queer characters are not mature content; they are not to be filtered out. LGBTQ+ people exist just as straight ones do. Queer books have honestly been my lifeline. Information is super cool and all, but — books are books. Endlessly not seeing yourself in books is sad.

I would like queer books to be recommended alongside any other book. Their stories have just as much worth. We shouldn’t be protecting kids from them — I mean, if anything, we should be writing and supporting more queer kid lit. For my 11-year old self to not think that randomly choosing a crush on a boy was the only option.

Also, as I was writing this post I came across the ALA Banned Books week, which is actually running over this week! Interestingly, they even have a section about diverse books which are frequently challenged. A good number of the top 10 challenged books feature homosexuality as a legitimate reason to ban the book. *scowls* rest assured that I’m really looking forward to all the cool Banned Books stuff happening!

Stories are so important. Don’t filter them out just because you think someone else won’t like them.

One Page More! E01: Politics & Government in YA

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One more book, one more page…one page more!

*punches the air in enthusiasm* I’m so excited to finally be sharing with you guys my new podcast.😀 (Yes. Podcast. EXCITING TIMES.) One Page More! is a monthly podcast in which I  — along with various bookish and bloggerly guests — talk about YA, musicals, and social issues. Essentially, as I so eloquently put, all the things that I love.😛 We’ll hopefully be covering all sorts from new releases to particular topics and random chatter. For the inaugural episode, I was joined by the wonderful Elly @ A Hufflepuff’s Thoughts and Victoria @ Doodles and Scraps to discuss politics & government in YA. Go forth and listen, my friends!

I do hope that you enjoy, and I also hope that this will continue to grow and develop as I work on it. I have a lot of things to learn — okay, next time I seriously do need to say ‘like’ and ‘um’ less — but I’m excited to be sharing flailings with you in a different format. (Also compose another jingle.

Also: I’m on the lookout for people to guest with me, so if you think that would be your cup of tea then do give a shout by commenting below; I’d love to hear from you!😀

In Which I Talk Webcomics

I have been having a lot of Feelings about webcomics lately. And I think that the time has come for me to share these feelings with the world. (Yes, essentially that means I am going to flail for an entire post. IT IS VERY FUN TO FLAIL FOR ENTIRE POSTS.)

I think that webcomics are wonderful. If you don’t have much experience with them, then they’re essentially just comics published online, usually available to read for free and updating with new pages every so often. I mean, in general I really enjoy serialised media because it gives me something to look forward to. But I also love that there are so many great, beautifully-drawn stories accessible. For some reason I actually find it quite difficult to read traditional comics? (Like, superhero ones. Also manga, which aren’t really traditional comics but you know what I meant.) I have done it, but I find it hard to focus on the page, and it takes me a long time. SO! Reading one page week by week is basically the perfect situation for me.

Anyways. Since I’ve been following some great webcomics for a while, I thought I’d share some of my favourite with you! These range from sci-fi to romance to fantasy and combinations of many genres.🙂


Witchy by Ariel Rees I think this one has my favourite art — it’s STUNNING. Seriously. I die a little inside. But the story and world are also completely kickass: basically the longer your hair, the greater your magic power. The MC Nyneve is my precious angry child. And all the characters are just so wonderful. MY CHILDREEEEN. Um, I have a lot of fictional children, it seems. Updates every Monday/Tuesday depending on where you live.

princess-princessPrincess Princess by StrangelyKatie You will probably collapse from the cuteness of this. (Or at least, I did.) It’s everything I want — yay reversal of fairytales, yay queer characters, yay awesome artwork. The Hello Kitty palette definitely adds to the cute vibes. And you can now buy a physical copy with some extra epilogue stuff! Complete.

Nimona by Noelle Stevenson I feel like…many people I know have read Nimona? And it’s no longer strictly a webcomic since you’ll have to buy a physical book to read the whole thing. But it was the first webcomic I ever read, and I still adore it. (I was so smol back then, oh my goodness.) I do think the experience of reading it as a graphic novel is a bit different — you miss the banter in the comics, the comments from Noelle and the many running jokes such as Goldenloin runs like an idiot — it’s still AWESOME. It’s a kind of…hero and villain shapeshifter story in a monkpunk setting? (MONKPUNK. That word makes me laugh. It wasn’t coined by me, but it’s supposed to be medieval steampunk.) I’d definitely recommend this as an introduction, and you can still read the first few chapters online here. Complete.

Les Normaux by KnightJJ & Al Les Normaux is about the daily lives of characters in a supernatural Paris — and if that setting isn’t cool enough, everyone is such a cinnamon roll. The cast is super diverse and although there are lots of characters, I really felt involved in each of their stories! The art is adorable too.always human3.jpg

Always Human by walkingnorth This is another really cute webcomic! It’s in a sci-fi setting but I love that the technological advances are seen as positive. The main focus are the two MCs Sunati and Austen, but there are many other great characters — once again the cast is really diverse. (I am pretty sure that the majority of the webcomics I’ve recommended has canonical queer characters though haha.) he art is so pretty and glowy; plus, the author writes an original soundtrack for each episode! Updates every Saturday.

SIGNS by julshii This one is a little less developed than perhaps some of the others on here, but the mystery is half of the fun. WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?? SHALL WE EVER KNOW??? It’s about some kids in a weird place and a secret computerised metropolis. The art starts off black and white, but woah there are GIFs later on and it is very awesome. Also, I would like to achieve Victor’s hairstyle for myself. Thank you world. Updates are sporadic currently.

Space Boy by Stephen McCranie Space Boy is a slightly more action-based one. YAY SCIFI SPACE AND MYSTERIES. It follows the story of Amy, who’s just woken from a cyrogenic sleep as she travelled to Earth from her home in outer space. (Because space journeys are very long, peoples.) There she meets the mysterious Oliver, and…well. We are still working through the mystery, but nevertheless. Again, all the characters are precious and wonderful, as is the art! In later episodes the creator also features fanart and gives little comment things which are very cute. Updates every Thursday.


Hotblood! by Toril Orlesky Alongside Witchy, Hotblood! has SUCH. BEAUTIFUL. ART. The colouring. The scenery. I am basically dying from the wonderfulness of the art. But aside from that, the premise is centuars in the old American Wild West, and WOW IT IS SO COOL. I have come to love all these idiots. Especially Rook, my favourite smol/extremely tall cinnamon roll. I could have read it all in one sitting, but I decided to save it and read it over…er, two.😛 Complete.

Various other ones that I occasionally pop by and/or have read small portions of are Check, Please!Heartstopper (by Alice Oseman! yes, of Radio Silence fame!), Rock and Riot, Dissent, Best Friends Forever, Paranormal Investigators, & Mias and Elle. And there are thousands more out there so HURRAH. *throws all the links into the post. Um, so, yes. This post has mostly just been me talking at length about things I like. Go forth, friends! Read away! I’d absolutely love it if you enjoyed any of the webcomics I recommend and I’m also keen to get recs from you guys.