February is insanely short. That is a confirmed fact. I mean, I know it’s only one or two days, but…EVERY MONTH FEELS TOO SHORT, DAMMIT. *sniffs* It’s also been a pretty quiet month, to be honest, with the exception of all the book releases over the past week. I did have a rather exciting weekend, though, so continue further on for the hot gossip. 😛
1. Radio Silence by Alice Oseman This book was probably my most anticipated 2016 release. (I don’t know how that happened? But yeah, it totally did.) It wasn’t a let-down at all! I LOVED IT. It had an amazing fictional podcast and beautiful characters and I really appreciated the message about uni and academia. As someone who generally finds exams quite easy — I mean, obviously I’m grateful for that but I hate that it can be my defining skill. Also: diversity! It has PoC and queer characters, no main romance, ACTUAL BOY-GIRL PLATONIC FRIENDSHIP JEEZ. It’s the only book I’ve ever read with characters (canonically) on the asexuality spectrum.
2. Carry On special editions Um, so…I bought my 4th and 5th copies of Carry On. Whoops. I got the UK paperback and the special colour in edition, which I’m very excited to try out! I don’t know what colour scheme I’m going to use yet, though. DECISIONS DECISIONS.
3. The Art of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson I’m a little torn about this one…I DID ENJOY IT. I mean, it was a self-discovery coming out kind of story. It used a lot of tropes I’d seen before. But I think these books do have worth, and it was a good contemporary self-discovery story. WITH BRITAIN YAY. 🙂
4. Fun Home the musical I haven’t been able to get hold of Alison Bechdel’s graphic novel Fun Home yet — the book this was based on — but I’ve been loving the musical. I love how the story of the three different Alisons (younger, going to college, and reflecting on her past) unfolds at the same time. And it’s the only movie I know of with a queer protagonist, so yay for that!
5. A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab This was another incredibly anticipated release. I thought the White London arc fell a bit flat (it felt like a set-up for the future, to be honest) but I STILL LOVED IT. It was amazing to see these characters and their luscious world grow. I actually love Kell and Rhy and Lila with all of my heart. I CAN’T EVEN OMG. Schwab’s writing was also beautiful, as per usual. In particular I thought the distinction between the different languages and names was fascinating (and very well done).
Stuff from around the internet:
- I know this is slightly out of nowhere. (I’ve been hiding it up my sleeve for way too long.) But I opened a Redbubble shop! Right now I’m selling some Carry On + Les Mis designs, although I hope to have a few more original ones up as well over the next week or so. 🙂
- I talked about a great book event I attended discussing Feminism in YA, with Holly Smale, Holly Bourne, CJ Daugherty and Anna James.
- I talked about the books I think would be better with LGBTQ+ characters. (I’m actually really proud of this! All my headcanoning finally put to some use. :P)
- I made a Carry On blog on Tumblr (welllbelove). I’m still posting my podfic, and I also made a Baz playlist for the Snowbaz Valentine’s gift exchange! Overall, a lot of Carry On stuff. If you couldn’t tell.
- Jupe @ smolprince wrote about stereotypes of women, femininity, and internalised sexism.
- Engie @ Musings From Neville’s Navel shared 10 songs that would make great LGBTQ+ books.
In the diary:
- I’ve only got £200 left to fundraise for my Guides trip! I managed to finally get my act together and apply for some grants, which was great. 🙂 (If you’ve missed my mini-updates every month: I’m going on an international trip with Girlguides, and we’re fundraising the entire cost of the trip.)
- I ACTUALLY PLANNED MY WIP YAY. I had a super long train journey, and…somehow I finished my main outline! It’s crazy, because I’ve always been a complete pantser, but I’m very excited to talk about it some more. 😀
- I also listened to several musicals on the aforementioned long train journey, including The Phantom of the Opera for the first time! That was fun. *nods*
- I’m trying to be a bit more politically aware, so I went to a talk by my local MP, who actually said a lot of things I agreed with. Helpfully. (I mean, I guess in particular Britain staying in the EU. Which is kind of the Thing of the moment haha.)
- I feel like I have SOO many exciting posts to get write over the next few weeks. I’m very excited to share them! Although, um, I kinda need to write them first.