books

My Favourite Books

Last week my social media was filled with pics of kids dressed up for book week. It really made me smile because I’m a total book lover from waaaay back, and so I love seeing children embrace their own love of reading. For some reason, my sons school is celebrating and having their book parade this week. He’s decided he wants to go as Batman. I consulted with my tribe on Facebook, and the consensus was that Batman is a character in comic books and they are a type of book so that is a ok. Phew, because we already have a batman cape and mask so that makes things super easy!

Anyways, I digress, back to my book loving ways. I thought I would celebrate book week here on my little blog too. Not by giving you some great book week costume ideas (there loads of other clever clogs handy with a sewing machine, unlike me, who have already shared their ideas) but instead I thought I would share with you some of my favourite books.

Now, asking me to choose my all time favourite book is like asking a mother to choose her favourite child….ok I only have one child so that’s pretty easy for me but choosing my favourite book? Not so much! So I’ve narrowed it down to the Top 10 from my bookshelf. Here goes:

Fiction:

Tomorrow, when the war began by John Marsden: No matter how old I get, this teen series will always hold a special place in my heart. My sister, Mum and I devoured these books when I was younger and I’ve reread the series several times since.

The Pact by Jodi Picoult: Jodi is one of my all time favourite authors and whilst this may not be my favourite, it was the very first book of hers that I read, so again, it holds a special place. I’ve since read all of Jodi’s books and always get very excited when I hear she’s releasing a new one.

The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold: I read this book many years ago now but it has always stayed with me. I remember thinking at the time that it was haunting but in an almost beautiful way. I also remember being disappointed by the movie because of course the movie never quite lives up to your imagination does it?

The Time Travellers Wife by Audrey Niffenegger: Ah, the beautiful, albeit unconventional love story of Henry and Clare. Once you managed to wrap your head around the whole time traveler thing you really get swept away into this story.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larson: This series took the world by storm when it came out and for good reason; it’s clever, twisted and captivating and quite different to anything I’ve ever read before.

Non- Fiction

On Writing by Stephen King: If you’re a writer, at whatever level, you need to read this book. You don’t have to be a Stephen King fan (I’ve never read any of his other books) to appreciate the fact that this is one smart guy who knows what he’s doing and has some great advice for navigating the world of writing.

Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert: I think you’re either an ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ lover or hater and whilst I can certainly understand some of the criticism that has come out about this book (self indulgent much) I took if for what it was and enjoyed the journey. I’m a lover.

Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert:  Packed with loads of ‘a-ha’ moments, wisdom and guidance, this one if for all the creative souls out there! Love it.

Power Over Panic by Bronwyn Fox: When it comes to managing anxiety and panic attacks I’ve read a lot of books but this one if by far the most practical and helpful. I often pick it up for a reread whenever I feel that my anxiety is getting a little out of control.

What to expect when you’re expecting by Heidi Murkoff: No, I don’t have a special announcement to make but I did think it would be remise of me not to include this in my favourite books because this was practically my bible when I was pregnant. I’ve recommended it and lent my copy to many a pregnant friend. If you only buy one pregnancy/baby book, make it this one!

So there you have it, 10 of my favourite books. Did you find any in there you would agree with? What are some of your favourite books? Can you choose just one??

 

 

 

 

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Reading, Watching, Listening.

Watching:

13 Reasons: I’ve debated for a while about watching this but intrigue finally got the better me. There’s been much conversation and debate about this show that’s based on the story of a teenager who commits suicide. I’ve decided to watch it so that I can make up my own mind. I’m five episodes into the thirteen episodes so I’ll let you know what I think when I get to the end…I hear that the final episode is especially confronting. Have you watched?

This is us: Who’s hooked? I am. This show had me right from that brilliant twist in the very first episode. I feel like it’s all building to something, and of course we all want to know how Jack died (I still can’t believe he’s going to die). Any theories?

Reading:

Small Great Things: Last month I finally found the time to sit down and read ‘Small Great Things’ by Jodi Picoult. Jodi is one of my all time favourite authors so I always have high hopes whenever she releases a new book. Jodi is renowed for always have some kind of big twist towards the ending and I have to say that was probably my only real disappointment in this book. For me, the ‘big twist’ lacked the usual punch and shock factor, maybe even seemed a little too neat, with everything tied up in a neat little bow at the end. But, having said that, I still thoroughly enjoyed the book and it held me captive right the way through.

Work Strife Balance: I’m going to be brutally honest and say I’ve never been a big fan of Mia Freedman (she seems to be the woman that other woman love to hate) but I didn’t really know why exactly. I don’t think I’ve ever actually even read anything on Mamamia before (not that I can remember anyway) but I do love her podcast No Filter; though I think that’s more about the subjects she interviews than Mia herself. Anyway, I decided I didn’t really know enough about Mia to judge so I picked up this book, a little intrigued to find out more. And you know what? I actually really, really enjoyed the book. There were funny bits and touching bits and even some uncomfortable bits. There were bits I couldn’t relate to and bits I couldn’t. But overall, I enjoyed it and I definitely feel like I know Mia a lot better now (as much as a total stranger can!) At the end of the day, she just another woman, another mum, trying to do the best she can, stuffing up a lot along the way; something which she openly admits. Have you read Mia’s book?

Listening:

The Well: One of my favourite podcasts is finally back after a long break! I’ve talked about The Well here before; Rebecca Sparrow and Robin Bailey talk all things motherhood, friendship and life. And they’re back with a bang with the “when life pulls the rug out from under you” episode. Get on it people.

S- Town: Oh man, I could devote an entire blog post to this podcast (and I might just do that one day). Just seven episodes long I binged listened to the whole thing in a week. And then I couldn’t stop thinking about it. So I recommended it to a friend who I knew would enjoy it as much as I did so I had someone to talk to about it. If you haven’t listened to S-Town it’s hard to explain in too much detail without giving anything away. I can say this; it is quite unlike anything I’ve ever come across before. As my friend so perfectly put it in a late night text message after he’d finished listening “clocks, mercury and gold. A story about nothing and everything”. The story begins with a man contacting a journalist, Brian Reed (the creator and narrator of the podcast) informing him there had been a murder in his small town that had been covered up and asked him to investigate. In the end, that’s not really story at all….and that’s all I’m going to say. A little like Sarah Koenig’s commentary in Serial, you find yourself mesmerised by Brian’s voice and left wanting to hear more. Lucky for me I will be as my friend and I scored tickets to this event in Melbourne next month where we’ll get to hear Brian talk.

So, what have you been reading, watching and listening to lately?

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So yes, I’m writing a book…

Have you ever heard the one that goes a little something like this:

There once was a man who used to pray to God every night that he would win tattslotto. He would get down on his knees, look up at the sky and beg God, please God please, let me win tattslotto. And then one night God answered. His big voice boomed down a reply from the heavens above and do you know what he said? Help me out here man, buy a ticket. Ha!

I’ve realised recently that I’ve had exactly the same attitude towards becoming writing a book. For as long as I can remember I’ve wanted to write a book and have that book published. But you see, to make that happen, I would first actually have to write a book. Seems obvious right? Well yes, it is, yet it’s something that I have yet to do, or even give a go really. I mean there was that one (rather feeble) attempt last year for NaNoWriMo but apart from that, my book has been nothing more than an idea, a dream, for many, many years.

So last week, I decided I’ve had enough of waiting, enough of the excuses (enough of praying to God if you will) it was finally time to take action and write the damn book. I announced it on social media; not because I wanted people to pat me on the back, say well done or offer any type of congratulations (though I did get that, which was lovely). No, I actually posted it for accountability. Because I know now that I’ve put it out there people might just ask me from time to time ‘hey, how’s that book of yours going?’ and I want to be able to give an answer that doesn’t entail me looking down at my feet, shrugging and offering some lame excuse as to why I have done anything about it.

Anyone who has read Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert would know of her theory about creative ideas having a life of their own. The concept being that ideas find their way and attach themselves to people and if you don’t do anything with those ideas they will move on to someone else. She provides a (quite amazing) story about this great idea for a book she once had that she began to research but then gave up on and never wrote. Years later, another author wrote that book. The exact same story she had planned to write. The concept of the book was very specific, very unique and Liz had never shared the idea; there was no way this other writer could’ve have ‘stolen’ or copied the idea. The thought of that happening to me and my book idea actually scares the crap out of me (wouldn’t I just kick myself if that happened) and has been the final motivation I needed to get started.

So yes, I’m writing a book and it turns out it’s nothing like the book I have always thought I might write. It’s a young adult (YA) fantasy/sci fi…I don’t even really read sci fi, it’s never particularly been my thing, yet there it is. I think I’ve tried for many ideas to ‘come up’ with an idea for a great book and it’s always felt a bit forced. But this one? Well it’s just like Elizabeth Gilbert says; it seems to have a life of its own and has just come to me, out of nowhere and it just keeps coming, shifting and shaping…and I’m excited to see where it takes me.

So yes, I’m writing a book.

What have you been up to lately? Ever attempted to write a book? Ever wanted to?

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First, we make the beast beautiful

Wednesday is usually my day for getting stuff done; it’s the one day of the week that I don’t have to go into the office and I’m kid free. Wednesdays for me usually involve working from home, doing the housework and washing, paying bills, going to the bank and the post office…you know all that boring grown up stuff that you don’t really want to do but needs to be done. But today? Well today I was totally self indulgent and I spent the whole day in bed reading. Hubby was home from work so he took the little man to and from school. It was cold and miserable outside so I cuddled up in bed with my heat bag and my latest read ‘first, we make the beast beautiful’ by Sarah Wilson. Hour later, I have emerged and I just need to share….

I’ve read many books on the subject of anxiety over the years but this one was different. The title and the cover grabbed me from the start, it promised to be ‘a new story about anxiety’ it really was.

As I was reading, there were parts of the book that I couldn’t relate to; Sarah’s life is (of course) quiet different to my own and she has done things I would never even dream of doing; from bungee jumping to taking off on week long hikes alone and living in a deserted shed in the woods for six months. Just reading about that stuff made me feel anxious. Nope, that’s not for me, because of course the control freak in me would never allow anything like that to happen! But there was so much in this book, and in Sarah, that I could relate to. I found myself nodding along furiously to parts wanting to yell “oh my god yes, this!”

By the time that hubby got home from running some errands I had flagged a whole bunch of pages that I wanted to read to him, which he lovingly let me do over lunch (bless him). There’s a part in the book where Sarah talks about how our loved ones can help us when we are feeling anxious or mid panic attack…

“Just be there when we wobble. Just stay. and be entirely certain and solid about doing so, even in the very convincing face of pushback and the frantic wobbliness from us. Your patience and calmness will exist in such stark contrast to our funk that we’ll start to feel silly and return to Earth. Our anxiety does pass.”  Umm yes! I’m lucky that my hubby is actually pretty good at doing this. It’s why he’s the one I always want nearby when I’m feeling anxious. He’s great at staying solid and bring me back down to earth.

And this; “don’t confuse our need to control our environment with our need to control you”. Yep, we anxious folks are control freaks but it’s not that we want to control other people, we’re just doing our best to try and control everything else to prevent (gasp) the worst from ever happening. (Of course deep down we know that’s actually impossible, because if we could control that we’d be God!)

And I giggled out loud at the trueness of this one; “Never in the history of calming down has anyone calmed down from someone telling them to calm down”. In fact, it does the exact opposite…thankfully my husband learned this a long time ago!

There were so many other random and weird things that popped up throughout the book that I have always thought to be a ‘Sarah thing’ (me that is, not Sarah Wilson) but now wonder if it’s actually an anxious person thing. Like the fact that I just cannot relax at a day spa but I totally love those cheap and nasty, walk in and walk out, Thai massage places. The best! And why I sometimes like to sleep upside down in bed; putting my head where my feet usually are and vice versa (a trick I introduced to hubby years ago and he now also loves to try when either of us are having trouble sleeping). Or why I’m so bad at making decisions; Sarah explains this so perfectly in her book but I won’t delve into that here, it’s a little complex and I don’t want to give o away.

If you suffer from anxiety I highly recommend you grab yourself a copy of this book. Allow yourself to get swept away into the amazing, raw, yet ever  wonderful world of Sarah Wilsons mind. You might just find some comfort in it.

 

 

 

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Reading, Watching, Listening.

When it comes to finding new books to read, shows to watch and podcasts to listen t,o I often base my choices on recommendations from others. So this week I thought I’d share with you what I’ve been reading, watching and listening to lately…check it out, you might just find something you like.

Reading: Over our summer break down the beach I finally got to read Me Before You by Jo Jo moyes. I devoured it over a few days and really enjoyed it. There is a sequel book, After You, but I’m yet to decide if I want to read it. I feel like the story finished as it should and wonder what more there is to say. I’m not sure if the sequel will be too depressing? If you’ve read it I’d love to hear your thoughts! I’ve also got the movie sitting at home ready to watch, I’ve been told to have the tissues ready.

I also recently finished reading Motherhood and Creativity: The Divided Heart by Rachel Power. I won a copy from the beautiful Lauren (aka- Me and My Girl.) She told me I’d love it and I certainly did! In the book, Rachel interviews a number of well known professional creatives (from actors and writers to painters and musicians) about how they juggle motherhood and their creative pursuits and how one affects the other. Whilst I am by no means a ‘professional’ creative I could certainly still relate to much of what was said. It was a really interesting read and I discovered so many common themes threaded throughout. If you are a mother and a creative soul you, this book is a must read.

Watching: Last week hubby was away overnight for work and so with the little man sleeping soundly next to me I finally got to sit down and watch The Minimalism Documentary on Netflix. I’ll be completely honest and say that whilst I’ve heard a lot about The Minimalists I’ve never actually read or listened to any of their stuff, so I thought I’d start here. I loved it and fell in love with Josh and Ryan (how could you not love them?) And I’ve since starting listening to their podcast. Whilst I don’t think I could ever be as hardcore minimalist as these guys I can certainly relate and agree with a lot of what they have to say.

Listening: To podcasts, all the podcasts! Here are some of my favourite episodes that I’ve listened to lately:

No Filter- Mia Freedman interviews Jodi Picoult: Rather than listen to the No Filter podcast in order, I just pick out the episodes that I’m interested in. So of course when I saw that Mia had interviewed my all time favourite author, Jodi Picoult, it was at the top of my list and it didn’t disappoint. I also loved her interview with Kasey Chambers and Rebecca Sparrow.

Conversations with Richard Fuller: with Jon Ronson, author of So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed. I’ve had Jon’s book on my ‘must read’ list for quite a while now (I really must get to it) and after listening to this podcast episode I want to read it even more! In this interview, Jon talks about some of the most famous cases from his book and gives a really interesting insight into not only the real stories behind them but also what happened to those people after they were so publicly shamed on social media. It’s quite sad how one small moment or action can literally ruin people’s lives. It’s certainly mad me rethink what I choose to share my social media pages.

The Well: The Grief Episode. I listened to every episode of The Well last year, except this one. I wasn’t sure if I could listen to it, I knew it would be a tough one but eventually, alone in the car one day not long after Christmas, I finally did. Listening to Robin and Rebecca talk is like listening in on a conversation with friends and this episode was both touching and insightful.

What have you been reading, watching and listening to lately? Got any good recommendations for me?

 

 

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Book Reviews- October

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It’s been all about non fiction books for me this month. Here’s what I’ve been reading…

Gut, The Inside Story of Our Body’s Most Under-Rated Organ: Giulia Enders

Giulia Enders is a German writer and scientist who has been studying the human gut for years. In this book Giulia explains in simple and often humorous ways, the inner workings of the gut and how it affects so many aspects of our health. I found this book really interesting, in particular the relationship between gut health and things like anxiety and depression; it’s definitely opened my eyes to some things. If you’re into learning more about how your body works and how to manage your health in more natural ways then this is a must read!

On Writing– Stephen King

I’ll admit upfront that I’m not a Stephen King fan, as in I’ve don’t think I’ve ever read one of his books or watched any of the movies. But I certainly respect him as a creative mind and even more so since reading this book. It is part memoir and part instructions on writing; and the two blend perfectly together. Because I didn’t know much about him, it was interesting to read Stephens life story and he has some really great, practical advice on writing. I also love how he is straight to the point and just tells it like it is. Every writer or aspiring writer will find pieces of gold in the book, I’m sure of it.

Bird by Bird– Anne Lamont

This one has been on my ‘must read’ list for a long time after having it recommended to me by so many people. Similar to On Writing, Bird by Bird is a must read for any writer, no matter what level you’re at. It has so many great tips on how to get started, how to overcome obstacles, where to find ideas, how to get those ideas out of your head and more. Anne shares her own experiences on writing and publishing openly and honestly which was a nice reminder that it doesn’t come easy to anyone; all writers have to do they hard work.

Cabin Porn– Zach Klein

This book is based on the tumblr website Cabin Porn which is a collection of beautiful images of cabins submitted by people from all over the world. The book contains two hundred of these images as well as ten ‘behind the scenes’ stories about the people who built the cabins. It makes a gorgeous coffee table book and flipping through it makes me want to runaway and build a cabin in the woods.

What have you been reading this month? Any of these books tickle your fancy?

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Book Reviews- September

Book reviews september, www.saradipity.com.auI’ve been reading a lot lately, making a concerted effort to pick a book instead of the phone. I’ve been reading at night and first thing in the morning instead of watching TV. If my son will allow it some days I even manage to squeeze in some reading in the late afternoon. I’ve been making my way through a list of books I’ve been wanting to read for some time, picking up a few at the library each week. Here’s some quick reviews of what I’ve read this month:

Craft for the Soul: Written by one of my all time fav bloggers, Pip Lincolne, this is one of the sweetest books getting around. It’s filled with little bits of inspiration, activities and prompts to get you thinking and creating. The book also includes ten step-by-step crafty projects. This is the perfect book to buy your bestie or keep on your bedside table when your feeling a little blue.

Eat, Pray, Love Made Me Do It: This book was published to celebrate ten years since the release of the original ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ by Elizabeth Gilbert. If you were a fan of that book then I’m sure you’ll enjoy this one too. The book is a collection of short stories from readers who were inspired to make a real life change after reading ‘Eat, Pray Love’. Some of the changes were big, some were small yet still significant realisations. It was a quick and easy read and whilst I don’t think there was anything particularly groundbreaking about it was a good little hit of inspiration which I still enjoyed.

The Paper House: There’s been a lot of buzz surrounding this debut novel by Anna Spargo Ryan so I was a little worried I’d be disappointed. I wasn’t. This book had me with the very first line; “My heart fell out on a spring morning – the kind that rose coolly in the east and set brightly in the west.” Anna’s writing is just so beautiful, she describes the indescribable in the most poetic way. The Paper House is told from the point of view of Heather, a woman who is struggling with the  sudden loss of her unborn baby. The book delves into some pretty big issues; Heather’s story becomes intertwined with that of her mothers, a woman who battled her own demons in the form of a serious mental illness. I just couldn’t put this book down; particularly towards the end when it went to a place I didn’t think it would; it had me captivated. I can’t say too much without ruining the story but if you haven’t already done so you should really read this book, it’s one of those stories that just stays with you.

The Anxiety Book: Written by Aussie journalist Elisa Black, this book is a ‘true story of phobias, flashbacks and freak-outs and how Elisa got her ‘inner calm back’. I wouldn’t describe this as a self help book although I certainly did find it helpful. Rather than telling us what anxiety is, why we have it and how to control it, Elisa simple tells her own story. And she tells its with great honesty. I could relate to a lot of what Elisa had to say, and had many ‘a-ha’ moments throughout the book. So many times it was like she reached into my body, pulled out my thoughts and feelings and put them into words. The biggest thing I took away from this book was that I am not alone and I am not crazy! If you suffer from anxiety I highly recommend you read this book. If you don’t suffer from anxiety but know someone who does then I still highly recommend you read it; it might just help you to understand

The Anti Cool Girl: Rosie Waterland is an Australian writer best known for her hilarious recaps of The Bachelor on the Mamamia Website (you can check them out here). If you’re a fan of Rosie’s writing then you will absolutely love this memoir. She does not shy away from anything, letting you in on all of the sordid details of her upbringing, with chapter titles like ‘Your mum will be a sex worker, and you’ll have no idea’, ‘You will get caught masturbating while watching rugrats’ and ‘Your friends will find a dead body in the bush and it will be your dad’. Rosie’s writing is totally in you face, if I’m honest at some points I squirmed; felt a bit uncomfortable. Rosie’s story is actually really sad and tragic but she has a way of poking fun at everything; I guess it’s the reason she survived and has become the success she is today.

What have you been reading lately? Have you read any of these? Any books you can recommend that I should read next?

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On beauty, having an amazinger face and meeting Zoe Foster Blake in the bathroom

Two weeks ago my sister and I were lucky enough to attend the official launch of Zoe Foster Blake’s new book Amazinger Face. I say lucky because apparently there ended up being over three thousand disappointed ladies who tried to get tickets but missed out. I thought we’d missed out too. After sending an email to the booking address I also called and put my name down on the list. Hours of waiting in anticipation later (and people starting to lose their shit on social media) I received an email to say sorry, the event had sold out within three minutes and we’d been placed on a waiting list. Bummer. One hour later I received another email confirming our spot; hooray we were in! Now time to get our pretty on….

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                                        My sister and I.

For those of you who don’t know Zoe is married to Hamish Blake (one half of the Hamish and Andy show) but is a celebrity in her own right. She is a journalist, published author and worked as the beauty editor under Mia Freedman at Cosmopolitan for several years. Amazinger Face is a fully revised and updated version of her original beauty book Amazing Face.

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                               Hi Zoe!

The launch was held over brunch at the Langham. I’d never been to the Langham before but had heard good things and let me tell you it did not disappoint! I felt fancy as soon as I walked in the doors. The food was amazing; we’re talking fluffy pancakes with Lindt chocolate sauce and meringues, fresh croissants, fruit platters and pretty bottles of waters with straws (see, fancy).

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As soon as we’d found our seat (on table 1 if ‘ya don’t mind) I headed off to the bathroom. When I walked in I noticed out the corner of my eye someone standing in front of the mirror fixing their hair but didn’t pay much attention. I stood at the basin washing my hands when I looked up and realized that said someone was in fact Zoe herself!

“Oh it’s you!” I gasped. Total fangirl moment, stay cool Sarah.

“Yes, it’s me” she replied “and I’m having a really bad hair day”. She looked stunning, as always and I told her so. I introduced myself and we chatted for a bit. As I went to walk away I had that moment where I thought to myself ‘do I ask for a photo or not?’ Not one to have any regrets I asked Zoe if taking a pic in the toilets would be inappropriate.“Umm, do you mind if we do it later after I’ve fixed my hair?” She said. She was totally nice about it but I still felt like a bit of a loser. And so I walked out without any evidence of having just met Zoe in the bathroom, hoping that she didn’t think I was a total weirdo. I quickly sent my friend (who is somewhat obsessed with Hamish and Zoe) a text. It read:

“So, me and Zoe chatting in the bathroom that just happened.” To which he replied..

“No way. What was she wearing? What were you wearing? What did she say? What did you say? Did you mention me?” See what I mean? A little obsessed.

We sat down to brunch, chatted, browsed and brought some stuff from Zoe’s Go To skin care range. I also purchased a copy of Amazinger Face and The Wrong Girl (one of Zoe’s fiction books which is being made into a TV series). Then Zoe entered the room. She gave a little speech then threw it open to the room for questions. Can I just say how awesome it is when you met someone in real life and they are just as gorgeous as you imagined they would be? Zoe was down to earth, friendly and damn funny! She has an extremely quick wit about her and had us all in stiches. At the end of her talk Zoe promised she would not leave without getting a photo with each and every person in the room and signing our books, which she did.

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                                    Me and Zoe.

And remember that Zoe obsessed friend of mine? Well we couldn’t have him miss out now could we….

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Now onto the book. I’ve read it cover to cover and have put those little sticky tabs on loads of pages. If you wear makeup, you need this book. If you don’t know how to wear makeup but want to learn, you need this book. If you want to look after your skin, learn how to tame your hair or what colour lipstick you should wear, you need this book. If you have a teenage daughter, she needs this book. Basically, I think every female should own this book. Its filled with some really great tips and tricks and need to know information. And the best bit? It’s not all about ‘looking’ good, it’s about feeling good and taking care of yourself and when it comes to beauty I think that’s the most important thing!

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             My goodies and signed copy of Amazinger Face.

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That evening after the launch I posted some pics on Instagram and who should like them but Zoe herself! I know, she probably just went through and liked everyone’s photos from the event but still, it made me feel special ha!

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Are you a Zoe fan? Have you picked up a copy of Amazinger Face yet? Got a fangirl moment you’d care to share?

By the way this is totally NOT a sponsored post. I have not been paid by Zoe to say how awesome she and her book are.

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Reading Lately

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I really enjoy reading and have been making more time to do it lately, even if it’s only a few pages before bedtime. Here’s what I’ve been reading lately:

The Other Side of the World by Stephanie Bishop: Set in 1963 this is the fictional story of Charlotte and Henry,  a married couple who move from their home in England to the other side of the world; Australia. Charlotte struggles with settling in her new home, with being a mother and the daily repetition it brings. I can’t go too much into it without giving the ending away but I have to say this book left me which a great feeling of unease. Sometimes I could relate to Charlotte but other times she seemed so foreign to me that I just couldn’t connect. Either way, the book was very well written and kept me interested until the end.

The Sun in Her Eyes by Paige Toon: If you’ve  never read a Paige Toon book I can sum them up for you in two words ‘chick lit’ and I don’t mind a bit of chick lit every now and then. The Sun in Her Eyes is told from the point of view of Amber, a woman in her early thirties who has left her husband behind in London to come to Australia and help care for her Father after he suffered a recent stroke. An old flame is rekindled leaving Amber questioning her marriage and her future. It’s an easy read, has a few little twists and overall I enjoyed it as a book I didn’t have to think too hard about.

The Perfect Girl by Gilly Macmillan: I loved this one! I actually read the whole thing in one day because I literally couldn’t put it down. The blurb grabbed me from the beginning: ‘To everyone who knows her now Zoe Maisey- child genius, musical sensation- is perfect. Yet several years ago Zoe caused the death of three teenagers. She served her time, and now she’s free. Her story begins with her giving the performance of her life. By midnight, her mother is dead.’ This book has lots of little twists and turns and has you guessing until the end.

What have you been reading lately? Any good book recommendations?

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Top 5 Teen Fiction for Adults- Fast Five Friday

Fast Frive Friday 3, www.sarahdipity.com.auWelcome to Fast Five Friday where I bring you my top five of something every Friday.

Confession; I love teen fiction books. Loved them when I was a teenager and still love them now. Here’s my top five teen fiction books that you should try reading (if you haven’t already) and if you’re a parent of a teenager why not get them reading too?

Tomorrow When the War Began series by John Marsden: This is my all time favourite book series. My sister, Mum and I all read this series growing up and I have since reread it a few times. I also really love that it’s by an Aussie author.

Looking for Alibrandi by Melina Marchetta: We studied this book in high school and I loved it. I also reread it when I was older and watched the movie which I think was a great portrayal of the book.

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins: I enjoyed the books and when the movies came out Hubby also enjoyed watching them with me.

The Twilight Series by Stephenie Meyer: I’m pretty sure the whole world has heard about this series. I didn’t exactly love the movies but I did enjoy the books. Yes, the whole story is pretty far fetched and corny but sometimes it’s nice to just switch off your brain and read something like that

Anything by John Green: We’re talking The Fault in our Stars, Looking for Alaska, Paper Towns and more. John Green’s books are usually a quick and easy read but with a bit of depth.

Do you enjoy reading teen fiction? Have you read any of these books?

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