Posted in Book Reviews, Nekategorizirano

Book Review: Caravan by Adam de Collibus

✦ SYNOPSIS ✦
William Abney is a war journalist from London, England. After serving in the first world war as a photographer he returns to England and makes his living taking baby portraits. He gets desperate for money and decides to find another job. The novel opens with him going to an interview to work for a newspaper called, The London Dove. He meets Reginald, the owner of the newspaper, whose is an unstable alcoholic, and a little disillusioned. William senses that there isn’t something right in the job, but takes the job anyway. The Contract, proposed by Reginald, is that William travel first to Morocco then across the Sahara, taking pictures of the locals and anything of cultural value that can be used in the magazine, this demand for news on the cultures of North Africa coming from the British soldiers returning from fighting there.

William takes a ship to Arish, a town on the coast of Morocco. He stays there for several days and meets some very interesting characters, some openly cold to him, others extremely warm and welcoming. He sees that the population in the city are divided into three groups. The foreigners, manly Europeans coming because of the news from the soldiers, and the locals of Arish who are split into two groups, one side wants the foreigners there because they are good for business. The other half doesn’t because they have taken so much advantage of the foreigners being there that they unknowingly made it so that if the foreigners choose to suddenly leave a lot of business will go bankrupt and hard times will come.

William takes a caravan across the desert and little by little he becomes more interested in the desert. He becomes obsessed with seeing the dunes and feeling the silence at the center of the desert. During his travel he meets Hans, a chess champion from Germany whose history, like William’s, is marred by the First World War. He meets Alexander, a once wealthy factory man from England whose wife framed him and he is hiding in the desert. He becomes good friends with the leader of Caravan, Hakeem, a charismatic leader who has two sides, the fearless politician and the sensitive human side. He falls in love with a Gypsy woman who is travelling to a small village out of Yemen to see her grandfather, who is getting old. He also hears of a strange and frightening legend. The legend of The Desert King, a soldier whose soul was taken over by an evil spirit and who has spent the centuries hunting and killing anyone who crossed his sacred desert with his army of blood thirsty warriors.

When the caravan gets close to the middle of the desert, its most vulnerable point in the journey, William begins to think about his life in the caravan and realizes how much he loves his life here instead of the one lived in England. When William decides that he’s going to find a way to stay, the people of the caravan discover that their well is poisoned. Because of the vast amount of people affected by the poisoning the caravan has to stop and recover. People begin deserting the camp and more and more clues begin to reveal themselves to William in sinister ways that they are in fact being hunted. When he discovers who is hunting them it’s already to lateand what happens next forces William to fight for his life in the caravan and the lives of his friends.

✦ IMAGERY AND SYMBOLISM ✦
While I was reading this book, I couldn’t help but think of caravan in terms of life. For me, Caravan represents our different life phases. Each stop, each station stands for one phase in our life. For William, Caravan is a lifechanging experience and each station reveals something new. William, the man we meet in the beginning of the book, is not the same William in the end of this book and it’s fascinating. Caravan is historical fiction in terms of genre, but I think it is also psychological in some way. Its focus is also on human experience and feelings.
Another thing that I loved about this book is imagery. I absolutely love the author’s writing style. Adam de Collibus did an amazing job here and the beginning of the book is great. I’m not a huge fan of long, boring descriptions, but the author’s descriptions here absolutely blew me away.

The cobblestone street was empty and lined with lampposts glowing yellow in the fog. Over the roofs, long tongues of smoke emitted from industrial factories added to the grey sky. The coach came to a gradual stop on the left side of the street.

Adam de Collibus, Caravan

✦ WHEN CULTURES MIX ✦
What is really interesting is that contrast between cultures, and it is a huge deal in this book. There is some kind of anxious feeling between people – they are afraid of everything that is new. It’s fascinating how one foreigner can learn so many things by observing one culture. You just have to pay attention to it.

✦ OVERALL ✦
To sum it up, this book was good. It’s very different from my usual read and I somehow enjoyed reading it. The plot is very interesting and one can learn so many new things from this book. On the other hand, I found some unnecessary parts that could be left out and the story will still keep its powerful meaning. I’m glad I read this book and it’s a perfect read for my September reading challenge.

My rating: 3/5⭐

Posted in Nekategorizirano

Harry Potter Movie Marathon

The boy who lived…

Harry Potter, J. K. Rowling

Harry Potter. Do I need to say something else? Of course not! Harry Potter is well-known to almost everyone and if you are a bookworm, the chances that the Harry Potter series is your favorite series are huge. As a kid, I loved watching the HP movies and it was always so magical. Unfortunately, I belong to one of those who saw the movies first and only later I read the books. After I read the entire series, I decided to buy all books. I just had to.Watching and reading about Harry Potter, Hermione, Ron and the rest of the gang was such a special experience and everytime I watch or read it again, I learn something else. What I really love about HP is that everytime you reread/rewatch it – you become somehow different person than you used to be. My favorite HP themes include friendship, love, and magic. It’s so important and the way it is mixed in one story is just brilliant.

There are too many sub-topics and I plan on writing about them in some of my posts. It’s almost impossible to talk about HP in general because you can’t say a thing without mentioning something else that’s connected to it. But what you can is actually talk about your feelings, how you feel about it. For me and my sister, it has become some sort of tradition to watch a Harry Potter marathon at least once a year. We buy snacks and spend days in our room watching the movies. What is so special for me in such moments is that we discuss after each movie, what we like and what we don’t like about it. For example, we find Dumbledore’s death devastating and how is it possible that they live in a magical world, everyday they experiment with magic – but they can’t make him alive. On the other hand, it wouldn’t have the same effect and the story wouldn’t be remarkable. My favorite characters are Snape, Dumbledore, and Hermione and I love them so much. Like I said, I will talk about them in my following posts.

To sum it up, the Harry Potter series/movies is perfect and I think nothing can compare to it. It sends you to another, entirely different dimension where you learn how with little magic and love, you can change the world. Oh, and one thing to remeber – It’s not about ‘me’, it’s about ‘us.’

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What I Read: July 2019

Yaay we have made it! It’s 30th of July which means it’s time for monthly highlights and I’m so excited. It has been quite rough for me and I was in a reading slump twice this month – which is really bad and I hate when it happens. I have read five books and most of them I liked very much. However, this is my July reading list:

Dark Soul Experiments by Bre Hall
I received an ARC of this book at the beginning of this month and I was super excited to read it because it was my very first physical ARC *screaming loudly*. It’s basically about the girl, Ren, who gets transported in the past when a guy gives her a charm bracelet. She finds it so confusing and thoughout the book, she has to make sense out of these stories. I left the full review on my blog, so if you want to read it – just scroll down. I really find this book very special – the plot is unique and its characters are brilliant.

I Heart Hawaii by Lindsey Kelk
This is the book that I got in my mail and I just couldn’t believe it. I ordered this book like months ago, but I somehow forgot about it – it took two long months to arrive here, huh.. So yes, I was really happy and of course I had to read it immediately. This book is the last one in the I Heart series and it just blew me away. It is about Angela who accepts her friend’s job offer and they go to Hawaii. There, she spends her time watching silky sunsets while having fun at the beach. However, she realizes that even Hawaii cannot make her problems disapper – they won’t go away just like that. I wrote full review on my blog, so feel free to scroll down and read it. I’m so happy about this book, but also very sad that this series has come to the end.

Again, but Better by Christine Riccio
I have also read this one somewhere at the beginning of this month but somehow I didn’t write about it. It’s just that I was so excited to read it because Christine is one of my favorite booktubers and she’s awesome – but somehow I didn’t enjoy reading this book. Shane is a shy girl who has no friends and she feels that she did so many mistakes just because she is an introvert. All of sudden – she is off to London where she signs up for a semester abroad. There she meets Pilot, a guy she likes immediately. However, Pilot has a girlfriend and Shane isn’t sure what to feel any longer. I saw Bookstagram going crazy about it – many people absolutely loved it. However, I found it quite boring and predictable. There was nothing special about its characters and they were so poor in sense of developing.

Red Rising by Pierce Brown
This book was recommended to me so many times, but my tbr list was just too long to pick this one up. However, I’m very glad I did read it because I find Red Rising brilliant! It was so amazing and even though I don’t usually pick up sci-fi, I really enjoyed in this one. Pierce Brown is an amazing author and I definitely want to read the entire series. Also, I want to mention that the fifth book in this series, Dark Age COMES OUT TODAY! How amazing is that? Red Rising is all about space – Darrow is a helldiver from Mars whose wife Eo is hanged. Now, Darrow is turned from a Red into a Gold. He is changed completely – so strong – and he passes all his tests. And guess what? He is picked by the House Mars to fight against other houses. Who will win? The plot is extraordinary and the author is so talented – well done!

Love and Hate by Lara Wilde
Another good book this summer comes from the talented Lara Wilde. I recieved an eARC this month and I knew I was going to like it. It is a cute love story between Leonor and Manel. They fell in love when they were teenagers, but one summer night Manel gets very jealous and breaks up with Leonor. She gets desperate, she calls him every night but he never responds. In the end, Leonor decides to forget about him and just to focus on her career. Everything changes one day in their future when they bump into each other. The plot is set in Portugal and its descriptions are everything. They are so beautiful and I fell in love with them. It is a light, sunny read and it’s perfect for this month.

Annnd that’s it! These are the books I read this month and I’m quite satisfied with them. I hope I can manage to read more books in August. How many books have you read this month?

Posted in Nekategorizirano

THE FIFTY BOOKISH QUESTIONS TAG

This is my first book tag on my blog, but I did some of them on my Instagram page, so feel free to check it out. I found this on Adventures of a Bookish Girl and I want to thank her. Also, if you want to do this tag yourself, consider yourself tagged by me.

  1. What was the last book you read? Yesterday, I finished The Burden of Trust by Tabitha Young. I posted the review in my previous post.
  2. Was it a good one? It was quite good, actually. I liked the plot and characters were very interesting and well-developed.
  3. What made it good? Like I said, the plot and its characters were really good. It was so easy to follow the plot and it was gripping from the beginning.
  4. Would you recommend it to other people? Oh, yes I would! If you like romance and moving stories, this one is definitely for you.
  5. How often do you read? I read almost every day. I say almost because I’m having chronic headaches and reading isn’t the best option in such times. However, when I feel better, I tend to read as much as I can.
  6. Do you like to read? What kind of question is this? Come on…
  7. What was the last bad book you read? Again, but Better by Christine Riccio. I read it last week and uggh! It was so bad for me, I couldn’t wait to finish it and just forget about everything in that book.
  8. What made you dislike it? Well, the plot was ordinary and predictable – it was nothing special to me. Also, I couldn’t trust its characters. They are weird.
  9. Do you wish to be a writer? Sure, but I have zero talent.
  10. Has any book ever infuenced you greatly? Yes, and I’m glad it did. It was The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. The first time I read it, I was going through a difficult times. I was a teenager and I reached that point in my life when everything seemed so pointless. This book made me change my views on life and I felt that I’m not alone in this world. The Alchemist saved my life.
  11. Do you read fan fiction? I don’t. I’m not very much interested in it.
  12. Do you write fan fiction? Not really, but in my mind I have at least billion scenes that don’t exist in my favorite reads.
  13. What’s your favorite book? You can’t ask me that question! You just can’t… I don’t have favorite book – I have favorite bookS. One book that I like to reread over and over is definitely Alice in Wonderland.
  14. What’s your least favorite book? Again – too many. I remember disliking The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks. His books are definitely not for me. I find them boring and predictive.
  15. Do you prefer physical books or read on a device? I prefer physical books. There’s nothing better than holding a real book. However, physical books are way too expensive here, so I usually read on my kindle.
  16. When did you learn to read? I’m not sure, I was too young haha. But I know it was too early, maybe at age 5. I loved spending time with my grandma, we usually watched soap operas, and that’s when I learnt how to read. That’s what I was told haha. Also, it’s interesting to mention that firstly I learned Serbian Cyrillic alphabet, even though it’s not my native language. (I watched soap operas in Serbian Cyrillic)
  17. What is your favorite book you had to read in school? The Complete Grimm’s Fairy Tales. It was my fist book that I had to read in my elementary school and I was so excited, I think that was the key moment in my life. Right then I discovered joy of reading. I wrote on this topic in one of my previous posts.
  18. What is your favorite book series? How can I pick only one? It’s impossible! The series I usually recommend because I like them very much are The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare, I Heart series by Lindsey Kelk, and ACOTAR by Sarah J Maas.
  19. Who is your favorite author? I really like Leigh Bardugo, Cassandra Clare, Stephanie Garber, Lindsey Kelk, and Pierce Brown. There are many more worth mentioning, but these are my top 5.
  20. What is your favorite genre? I have to go with fantasy and YA.
  21. Who is your favorite character in a book series? Hmm, let’s see.. I liked Jace from The Mortal Instruments, he is amazing. I also liked Alex from the I Heart series, Hermione from Harry Potter.. these are great characters.
  22. Has a book ever transported you somewhere else? Every book that I have read transported me somewhere else. I have been to many, many places because of books that I read. I liked being on the planet Mars in Red Rising by Pierce Brown. That book is brilliant!
  23. Which book you wish had a sequel? The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. I loved that book, it was so magical.
  24. Which book you wish DIDN’T have a sequel? The Illuminae Files by Amie Kaufman. I really liked the first book in this series, but I couldn’t get into the second book, it was all too much for me.
  25. How long does it take you to read a book? It depends on many factors. If I really like a book, then I finish it in two days. However, on days when I get busy and barely have time to read – it usually takes a week or so.
  26. Do you like when books become movies? I don’t. It’s really bad if you read a book and then it becomes a movie. They always leave out some (important to readers) scenes and it can change the entire story. That’s not what we want, right?
  27. Which book was ruined by its movie adaptation? Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. The book is amazing, but I felt like the concept of the story is missunderstood by watching the movie. They send us two different messages.
  28. Which movie has done a book justice? The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. It is so. so. sooo. good! I highly recommend it!
  29. Do you read newspapers? Yes. There’s always something interesting going on.
  30. Do you read magazines? I used to. When I was teenager, I was obsessed with them.
  31. Do you prefer newspapers or magazines? Newspapers.
  32. Do you read while in bed? Yes, I love reading in my bed, especially in the evening. It’s my favorite place to read. It’s so comfy and relaxing.
  33. Do you read while on the toilet? Sometimes yes. If the book is really interesting, I won’t go even to the toilet without bringing my book with me.
  34. Do you read while in the car? I wish! I get too dizzy.
  35. Do you read while in the bath? Not really.
  36. Are you a fast reader? I would say so. Yes.
  37. Are you a slow reader? Nope..
  38. Where is your favorite place to read? At my home in my bed. It’s super comfortable and peaceful.
  39. Is it hard for you to concentrate when you read? If I read something good, then it isn’t difficult at all. However, reading something boring takes a lot of time and it’s very difficult to concentrate.
  40. Do you need a room to be silent while you read? My family is quite big and our home is everything but silent. I learned how to read in a room full of people who are talking constantly.
  41. Who gave you your love for reading? My grandpa. He used to read and write every day. Even now, after his death I saved one of his Harry Potter notebooks. I love it so much.
  42. What book is next on your reading list? I’m not sure.. I finished Red Rising by Pierce Brown and I really want to read the second book. But I have some mandatory readings for the rest of July, so we will see.. I will keep you updated.
  43. When did you start to read chapter books? I’m not sure about that one. Probably it was in my elementary school.
  44. Who is your favorite children’s book author? The brothers Grimm – they made me fall in love with reading and I will be forever thankful.
  45. Which author would you most want to interview? Lindsey Kelk – I follow her on Instagram and she always posts about interesting stuff. She is a great person!
  46. Which author do you think you’d be friends with? Again, Lindsey Kelk. But I also want to be friends with Leigh Bardugo and Sarah J Maas.
  47. What book have you reread the most? The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. I pick it up whenever I feel down. There’s always something new to learn from it.
  48. Which books do you consider ‘classics’? Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, Mrs Dalloway by Virginia Woolf, and many more.
  49. Which books do you think should be taught in every school? Ugh, there are way too many books on my list! First of all, it is very important to include almost all genres (yes, here I’m talking about fantasy, YA, sci-fi…) I would give them Harry Potter to read, because everybody fall in love with this series. Also, I would let children choose what they want to read in most cases. It’s important for them to find what they like. Not all children love all genres.
  50. Which books should be banned from all schools? I don’t think there is such thing. Every piece of work matters and we should respect it just like everything else.

And that’s it. I answered all of them and if you’re still reading this – thank you!
Happy reading!

Posted in Nekategorizirano

Book review: I Heart Hawaii by Lindsey Kelk

‘I am a woman who has it all,’ I said quietly, staring at my own face reflected back in the screen of my iPhone. ‘I am a woman who owns her power.’
The version of me looking back rolled her eyes but I went on regardless. ‘I am strong, vital and beautiful.’
And tired, emotional and, according to the tag in the front of my pants, wearing knickers back to the front. Although they were clea, so at least there was that. The affirmations were my best friend, Jenny’s idea.

I Heart Hawaii, Lindey Kelk

✦ SYNOPSIS ✦ 
When Angela Clark’s best friend Jenny invites her to join a press trip to Hawaii, three days of sun, sea and sleep sounds like the perfect antidote to her crazed life.

At the work in New York, she’s supossed to be the face of Having It All. But the only thing Angela feels she excels at is hiding in the printer cupboard, eating Mini Cheddars and watching Netflix on her phone and if this is living the dream, she’s more than ready to wake up.

A few day away with Jenny sounds like exactly what she needs but Angela’s talent for getting into a scrape guarantees nothing goes to plan – and not even the most beautiful beaches, blue skies and daiquiris will get her off the hook…

✦ SUMMER DASH ✦
I Heart Hawaii is the last book in this amazing series, and its title makes you want to grab the book and go read it somewhere on the beach. Ideally, that would be somewhere in Hawaii, but let’s keep it real. This book is so romantic, brilliant, and funny. I absolutely loved it!

‘Look at the ocean. I’ve never seen so many shades of blue. ‘
As we rode higher up the rocky road, I could see the shoreline in the distance and the outline of another island a few miles away across the ocean. On the other side of us was a science fiction landscape, cast in every single shade of red and brown that had ever been conceived.

I Heart Hawaii, Lindsey Kelk

The author’s descriptions of Hawaii are so realistic and, I’m usually not really into long descriptions, but this book could be all about Hawaii and I would still read it, because, oh my God.. If I could, I would pack my suitcase and go to Hawaii.

We sat down just as the blue sky started to turn pink, laughing and joking, and most importantly, eating, until the sun was completely swallowed up by the ocean. What seemed like a hundred candles of tiki torches glowed in the sand and the moon rose above the water, keen to show us she wasn’t afraid of a little flashy competition.

I Heart Hawaii, Lindsey Kelk

✦ ANGELA, JENNY, AND ALEX SQUAD ✦
First of all, this is my favourite squad, I want to be one of them! Angela Clark is an amazing woman, I admire her. She is the mother of Ellis. Ops, I mean Alice. She is a strong woman and the way she keeps the balance between her career and her private life. She has the most handsome husband in the world, the cutest baby, the bestest friend, and she is very successful. Do you need anything else?

Jenny deserves an award for being the best friend in the world. She is gorgeous, smart and kind. She is the new Oprah, I knew it from the beginning. I love how she always has some new, fantastic ideas. She always has solution for any kind of problem.

I love Alex Reid! I’m so jealous of Angela for being his wife. He’s the most handsome man walking on the planet. Actually, he exists only in the I Heart series, which is painful for me. I want him to be real.

✦ OVERALL ✦
I loved this series, I don’t want it to end. I remember reading this series almost ten years ago, and I was obsessed with it. I loved everything about it and these books will always be something I would gladly reread.

I have read this book under 24 hours and I’m still hungover. Somehow I managed to write this review and express my thoughts and feelings about this book. All I know is that I loved it and it’s my favourite summer read so far.

Definitely a huge 5 star read for me that I highly recommend.

Posted in Nekategorizirano

Movie Review: Sweet Home Alabama (2002)

‘The truth is I gave my heart away a long time ago, my whole heart, and I never really got it back.’

Melanie

✦ CAST ✦
Reese Witherspoon as Melanie Smooter
Josh Lucas as Jake Perry
Patrick Dempsey as Andrew Hennings
Candice Bergen as Mayor Kate Hennings
Mary Kay Place as Pearl Smooter

✦ DIRECTOR ✦
Andy Tennant

✦ REVIEW ✦
Sweet Home Alabama is American romantic comedy and it was released in 2002. The movie begins with 10-year-old Jake and Melanie inspecting the results of sands struck by lighting. Jake tells Melanie that he will marry Melanie once they are old enough for it. Now, Melanie is a successful woman who works as a fashion desinger. She loves her job, and more importantly, she adores her fiancé, Andrew. He knows nothing about her past, but he is determined to marry Melanie. However, Melanie is ashamed of her poor roots and she has adopted the surname ‘Charmichael’ thatno one knows of.


The problem pops up once she realizes that she cannot marry Andrew until she divorces Jake, the young man whom she married long ago. They are strangers now. Melanie comes back to her village after seven years to find her husband and finally to see her parents. Moreover, Jake is not happy to hear the news. He doesn’t want to divorce her because he thinks that Melanie’s new life changed her as a person.


At the same time, Kate, Andrew’s mother, suspects that Melanie is not the right person for her son, so she sends people to spy on her. Andrew comes to surprise his fiance, but he discovers that Melanie was hiding him so many things. Despite everything, he still wants to marry her.


Just then, Melanie must make the right choice. Who will win her heart? Andrew or Jake

Image by @CheriBouma via https://www.pinterest.com/pin/263179171948169113/?lp=true

✦  OVERALL ✦ 
Ah, I loved this movie so much! It is one cute love-story that needs to be seen at least once in life. I will definitely rewatch it soon. I am not that erson who prefers watching romantic movies, but this one was really nice. It contains all necessary elements, and the cast is amazing! I liked Melanie and I admire her for all her strength to start a new life. She works hard to get everything she wants.

However, sometimes you need to be careful what you wish for. There are times when you get something and realize it isn’t something you want. That happened to Melanie. I also really liked Jake, but if I have to choose between Jake and Andrew, I would probably go for Andrew. He is so kind and understanding. He was ready to give up on everything for her. I love the way he respects Melanie. He is really perfect!

What I didn’t like in this movie was the mother role. Melanie’s mother is quite distant and she wants all best things for her daughter. She wants her to marry Andrew only to be rich. She thinks this way Melanie will have better life. The only thing I liked about this woman was that she had taught Melanie how to be a successful woman and how to fight for her dreams. On the other side, there is Andrew’s mother and she wants her son to marry someone who will bring her new political votes. She doesn’t understand feelings, she sees only facts and that’s what matters.

‘You are just like your father. One minute you are brilliant and you are controlled, the next thing you are throwing it away on some piece of ass!’

Mayor Katherine Hennings

To sum it up, I really liked this love story, it is super cute and I highly recommend it. You will not regret watching it!

Image by @USA TODAY via: https://www.usatoday.com/story/life/entertainthis/2019/04/17/sweet-home-alabama-sequel-proposal-includes-patrick-dempsey-josh-lucas/3495738002/

★★★★ (4/5)