Bookstagram love

You can often find me perusing bookstagram of an evening.

It’s just so pretty.

Today I thought I’d share some of my favourites.

The Bibliotheque

Swept Away by Books


Paper Fury

Bookstagram Features

I know. PRETTY.


Who are your favourite bookstagram-ers?

A day in the (not so) fictional nineteenth century

On landing in the nineteenth century, the first person I seek out is Jane Austen’s Emma, of course. Of all my favourite nineteenth century ladies, I feel like she would accept my whole from the future situation quickly and with minimal fainting.

I’m right. She sorts me out, fashion-wise and corrects the most alarming aspects of my modern manners. Getting out my phone (although she doesn’t know it’s a phone, obviously. She just refers to it as ‘the devil gadget’), is apparently not acceptable behaviour.

As much as I love her, Emma doesn’t get the concept of having an Instagram account to maintain.

Once I’m presentable, we go fetch Jane Austen herself and, after she and Emma share their Stranger than Fiction I-am-Harold-Crick moment, proceed to London as fast as our carriage will carry us because I have limited time and an extensive game plan. During the journey I bask in the witty, political and occasionally mean banter of my new lady friends. I’ll explain Shine Theory to them while they laugh and shake their heads at my 21st century manners. One of my goals for the day is to contribute to the feminist conversation of the nineteenth century. When she seems comfortable, I briefly explain to Jane that I am from the future and she’s surprisingly cool about the whole thing. The nineteenth century, she tells me, is like a new world. Time travel is a possibility she always suspected.

When we arrive in London we head immediately for New Gravel Lane, to The Kings Arms pub. Emma and Jane express a degree of trepidation, but I shut them down. There is a notorious murderer to be apprehended.

The Ratcliffe Highway murders took place in December of 1811. The first attack was at number 29, a linen drapery. Within an hour someone had broken into the building and massacred the Marr family. Only twelve days later, similarly brutal killings were discovered at The Kings Arms pub. The official story, I tell Jane and Emma, concerns one John Williams, a sailor of indeterminate heritage (though most likely Scottish or Irish) who had a vaguely gossiped about grudge against the Marr family. The evidence that he hacked to death both the families was largely circumstantial and Williams hanged himself in his cell before a verdict was reached (they were definitely going to find him guilty).

I would like to find a solution more concrete to this horrifying mystery, and I know that Jane Austen, Emma Woodhouse and I are the perfect team to do it. It’s a shame that, being the nineteenth century (when women were’t exactly allowed to participate in murder investigations), the contribution we made to any cracks in this case will have been totally under-reported.

After a long day of hunting for murderers, I leave Emma and Jane to get dinner together, and head over to the Institute for Psychical Research. I have a date with renowned medium Daniel Douglas Home. People in the 19th century were crazy for the supernatural. The institute tested mediums and magicians as a means to test their legitimacy and despite extensive testing never found a satisfactory explanation for Home’s tricks.

(I plan to ask for a magic class later).

Home sits me down for a candlelit dinner. In his sexy Scottish brogue he describes to me his sickly childhood. Diagnosed with tuberculosis aged nine, he spent the hours many other children would play, sitting alone and communicating with the dead, who he believed surrounded him. Eventually, due to the unwanted undead, his aunt threw him out of the house he grew up in, and he was forced to make it on his own in the world as a medium of extraordinary natural talent.

He went on the show me a few of his party tricks. These included summoning spectral hands which patted me in a way I found creepy, but ultimately friendly. He shrunk his body to half its natural size.

Then he began to levitate. He took my hands as he floated toward the ceiling.

It was all very impressive, but hardly conducive for conversation.

When I told Jane and Emma over drinks about it after, they both rolled their eyes knowingly.

Emma promised to find me someone much more suitable.

Blogger Insecurities

The I should read more guilt trip.

I would be reading way more if I wasn’t watching TV right now.

But I love TV. If it wasn’t pretty great there’s no way Shonda Rhimes would have dedicated her life to it.

You know how people read 100 books in a year? By not watching TV.

Maybe I’ll just start blogging about TV every now and again and hope nobody notices the inconsistency in my supposed book blog.


The am I the only one who finds this behaviour creepy? thought process

This guy everyone is shipping so hard actually behaves pretty inappropriately. Like, if one of my friends told me about him, I would be concerned. The word I would use is murder-ey.

Maybe I’m being oversensitive. Everyone else loves the way that he watches her sleep.

But isn’t it kind of… rapey?

No. If it was, other people would think so too. If I mention it they’ll think I’m a total killjoy.

I mentioned it. Now everyone thinks I’m weird for minding about the whole incest/consent/harassment issue.

Is the problem YA writers, or is it me?

Will people get annoyed if I bring up feminism again?


The I’m just not that into …. issue

Everyone else loves fairies. Why don’t I love fairies?

Remember that movie where every time someone said they didn’t believe in fairies, a fairy died?

I’m basically responsible for mass fairy death. I’m a mass fairy murderer.

People would be really mad if they knew that in addition to not liking fairies, I’ve never seen the Lord of the Rings movies. And not only that, but that I never have any intention of watching them. Ever.

God, I can’t even nerd properly. If people knew of my inadequate nerdyness, they would never read my blog again.


The I suck at Twitter problem

I’m sure no one else has this much trouble thinking up 140 characters.

Why this of all things should trigger my fear of rejection is nonsensical.

As I’m a book blogger, I should probably say something about books, rather than retweeting the fake prime minster account all the time. I don’t think any of my Twitter followers even live in the UK.

It’s so funny though.

Maybe I’ll just tweet another opinion about The Vampire Diaries.

Does anyone other than me still watch The Vampire Diaries?

Oooh! A quote!

Shit. It’s 160 characters.

Maybe I just won’t tweet today.


The I can’t think up a blog post conundrum

Does anyone else have this problem?

I wish I could write smart discussion posts in which I am knowledgeable and erudite.

When I tried to convince my co-workers that Zootropolis is about racism and fear politics they gave me some serious side eye.

I could write about Daredevil, but I’ve already read several articles way more insightful that I would ever be.

I could write a poem about Charlie Cox’s abs.

(I totally couldn’t).

Maybe I should just write another post about how broke I am. Or is that getting uncomfortable?

Being a person is hard, sometimes.

Procrastinate like a Feminist

Am I struggling to keep up with blogging and NaNoWriMo?


Yes, I am.

I owe this partly to my fantastic procrastination skills.

When I procrastinate by reading feminist materials, I class it as ‘learning’ and therefore not time wasting.
I think maybe it’s both.

As such, today, I figured I would help you procrastinate better.

Am I struggling to keep up with blogging and NaNoWriMo?


Yes, I am.

I owe this partly to my fantastic procrastination skills.

When I procrastinate by reading feminist materials, I class it as ‘learning’ and therefore not time wasting.

I think maybe it’s both.

As such, today, I figured I would help you procrastinate better.

To read:


A feminist publication started by Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner. Sign up and you’ll get a weekly newsletter filled with articles about women fighting sexism in Silicon Valley, the results of gun wielding abusers (nothing good. When will it end?) and the experience of having a ‘vagacial’ (I didn’t know that was a thing, either).

To listen:

Women of the Hour (itunes)

Lena Dunham also just started a podcast. It’s wonderful. It has a pretty limited run I believe, and I have loved the first two episodes so much that I am pre-grieving it’s ending. There’s a subject a week – so far we’ve had friendship and bodies – and within that Lena hands the mic to the women who can best speak to it. The podcast features a pretty wide spectrum of feminists.

It brings out all of my emotions, and I end each podcast with a post-it filled with names of women I now must follow on Twitter, Instagram, etc.

One such post-it featured Ashley C. Ford, who was one of the speakers on the friendship episode. Since the show first appeared on itunes, I have read pretty much all of her work that I can find. She writes beautifully. One of my favourite pieces of hers was an interview with Rainbow Rowell. I wrote this quote in my journal:

‘When I asked if world-building was a coping mechanism, a tool of resilience for children in bad situations, Rowell takes a moment to respond. Then offers, thoughtfully, “I have really mixed feelings, because there’s this idea that kids are resilient, and I don’t really believe it. I think kids get by and do what they need to survive, and then they kind of turn into bombs.”

So, how do we defuse the bomb?

“Hopefully, you get to a place where you’re feeling secure and you’re feeling safe, and that’s when it comes out.” She takes a deep breath and exhales into the receiver. “That’s the most you can hope for.”’

To watch:

I listen to Beyonce while I jog. I had been meaning to listen to ‘that sample bit in Flawless’ forever. I finally did it. This talk is inspiring. Watch and fall in love with this lady.

We Should All Be Feminists – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Where I hang out on the internet #1

Procrastination is vital to creativity, right? Here’s where I procrastinated best in the last week:

Procrastination is vital to creativity, right? Here’s where I procrastinated best in the last week:

To Read:

I just finished university, and I change my mind every week as to whether I should pursue writing or some job that has actual money in it. Should I go for the career or the dream? George Monbiot reckons dream.

‘Elsewhere, at this vulnerable, mutable, pivotal moment, undergraduates must rely on their own wavering resolve to resist peer pressure, the herd instinct, the allure of money, flattery, prestige and security. Students, rebel against these soul-suckers! Follow your dreams, however hard it may be, however uncertain success might seem.’

To watch:

Roxane Gay is just so freaking on it.

‘…you’re all looking for the best ways to use your voice. You’re looking for the strength and the courage it requires to use that voice. You may not feel it yet, but you are going to find your way. As you do, there is one truth that you should not let go of. No one can narrate or examine this world that we live in the way that you can. That is the power of your voice. If you bring the full force of yourself to what you have to say, your voice is going to be powerful beyond measure, and how. And I look forward to hearing it.’

To listen:

dear hank and john

John and Hank Green started a podcast. It pretty much goes without saying that it’s going to be awesome. They are giving advice in the funny, considered and empathetic way they’ve been talking to us since vlogbrothers began.

It’s also available on itunes. The first episode is called Do You Pee On Your Own Head?

I think that says it all.