The Secret Life of Pets | Film Review

Hello lovelies! On Friday evening, my parents and I went to the new Cineworld nearby us to see The Secret Lives of Pets, a film I’ve been itching to see since I first saw the trailer back in 2015.
Max is a terrier who lives in a New York apartment block with his owner. They have a very close relationship. Then, she adopts Duke, a huge, hairy beast of a dog, and Max’s life is changed forever. On a walk, the two dogs encounter a group of nasty, stray cats and end up in the back of a van, heading for the pound. Thankfully, a ballsy, bad-ass bunny rabbit, frees them on the condition they join a revenge group. Meanwhile, back in the apartment block, Max’s friends are worried about his safety and whereabouts, so set out to look for him.
So, like I mentioned before, the story is set in New York, however no land marks really play a part in in the film, so I’d say it could be set in any city with a river or park such as London or Paris.
The characters are all fantastic, especially Snowball, the bunny, and Chloe, the cat. The film has some real laugh-out-loud moments in it and you engage with the characters and want a happy ending for them all.
I’d recommend this to anyone, any age, who loves animals, owns an animal or simply fancies watching a light-hearted, feel-good film!
This review has been short but I hope you’ve enjoyed it all the same! Have you seen The Secret Lives of Pets? Do you want to? Let me know in the comments!
Lucy x
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Paper Towns by John Green | Book Review

Hello lovelies! Today I’ll be reviewing a book I massively enjoyed reading: Paper Towns by John Green. Unbelievably, it’s the first John Green novel that I’ve ever read, and, it sure won’t be the last – I’ve had a taster for his writing style, fallen in love and now want to read all of his books!

There are two significant characters, one who is narrating and another who, for a large chunk of the story, is an idea, only talked about, admired.

Quentin believes everyone gets a miracle, and that his was Margo Roth Spiegelman. When she moved in next door, they became good friends. But, they grew apart and now, in their last year of high school, they barely talk. That’s until, one night, Margo climbs through Q’s bedroom window and summons him on an adventure. The next day, at school, Q hopes things will be different, that he and Margo can be good friends once again. But Margo isn’t at school the next day, or the next, or the next. She’s disappeared and left a set of clues behind for Q to follow.

It is a tale of love and adventure.

The story is set mainly in the American state, Orlando. It is mentioned quite a bit at the start of the book, but does not play a part in the forward movement of the story. Towards the end of the book, a non-existent location becomes important and gives the book its name.

What I liked about this story were all the interesting, realistic characters and the pace; the story was driven by the set of clues and there wasn’t a dull moment. I also enjoyed the humor in this book; it’s the perfect summer read!

I honestly cannot think of one thing I didn’t like about this book!

Paper Towns has been made into a film, which I recently watched and enjoyed, however, it doesn’t do the book justice.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this review! Have you read Paper Towns? If so, what did you think of it? Did you enjoy it as much as me? I’d love to know, so let me know in the comment section!

Lucy x

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Fire Colour One By Jenny Valentine | Book Review

Hey guys! Today I’m reviewing another book that is on the Carnegie shortlist – Fire Colour One.

Iris has been torn from her only friend and dragged back to England, where she’s forced to meet her dying billionaire father. Why? Because Iris’ mother, Hannah, wants everything of Ernest’s. But he figured this long ago. His revenge has taken years to plot, and only when he’s gone, will it swing into action…

The story is told in first person by Iris, a sixteen year old, obsessed with fire and neglected by her mother. Iris is a unique and interesting character, but I didn’t feel she was very lifelike because she isn’t developed as well as characters in other books such as Shelby in There Will Be Lies (review HERE).

It is a tale of love, greed and revenge.

What I liked about this story was the plot; although it starts off slow and not much exciting is happening in the present of the book, stories told within the story and flashbacks keep it interesting. Towards the end is where things really start to get exciting; the feeling that revenge is to come, and then the reveal of the genius plan.

What I didn’t like so much about this book was how most of the characters seemed slightly two-dimensional; I feel that more description was needed in order to fully develop them.

However, I still think that Fire Colour One is worth the read and I would reccomend it to readers aged 12 and up, both boys and girls.

So, I hope you’ve enjoyed this post! Have you read Fire Colour One? If so, what did you think?

Lucy x

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There Will Be Lies By Nick Lake | Book Review

Hello lovelies! Today I’m reviewing the type of book I wouldn’t normally read, but it’s on this year’s Carnegie Medal shortlist, so I thought I’d give it a shot.

There Will Be Lies is full of plot twists and turns, as well as long, descriptive sentences that allow the reader to paint vivid, accurate images in their head.

The main character, who’s name is Shelby Cooper, is deaf but leads a good life, home schooled by her over-protective mum. Then, Shelby’s hit by a car and her world is turned upside down. They’re on the run and she can no longer trust anyone. All while this is happening, she keeps getting these dreams where she has to save a child from a crone or her own world will end.

The story is told in first person by Shelby Cooper, the main character. I  feel as if I know lots about Shelby; the author has developed her well.

Quite often in stories, other characters aren’t developed as well as the main character is; that’s not the case with There Will Be Lies. You really get a feel for what all the characters are like and this is down to detailed description of each and every one, no matter how small a part they play.

The story is set in several different American states because they’re on the run. A good chunk of the story is also set in the Dreaming, a mystical land created by the author that adds further exciement and drive to the story. it adds drive because There Will Be Lies is structured real life, the Dreaming, real life and so fourth, and because it’s like two separate stories, the reader wants to find the connection between the two worlds, which comes towards the end.

Some themes explored in There Will Be Lies are trust and betrayal.

What I liked about this book was how the plot twisted and turned, which kept things exciting and made me, as a reader, push on. Also, the language and description used made most of it a dream to read.

Now, I say ‘most of it a dream to read’ because sometimes the description, in my opinion, was too detailed and leaned a little towards boring. Other than that however, it was brill!

I’d recommend this to 13 year olds and above, and to both boys and girls.

So, I hope you’ve enjoyed this review on There Will Be Lies by Nick Lake! If you’ve read it, what are your thought on it?

Lucy x

 

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MAC Studio Waterweight Foundation | Review

Hello lovelies! At around Easter, I made my first MAC purchase and it was this: the Studio Waterweight Foundation, which I’m totally in love with!

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First of all, let’s talk packaging! MAC’s latest member of their foundation family is housed in a stunning frosted glass bottle with a pipette applicator. The bottle holds 30ml and looks fabulous sitting on a dressing table, however it’s heavy and fragile, so not the best option if you travel lots.

The formula is very runny and application can get messy, however I don’t mind because the finish is lovely: very skin-like because it’s neither matte nor dewy, which is just what I’m after. The coverage is light, similar to that of a BB cream, but it’s buildable because no matter how much you slap on, you’ll never look cakey!

This foundation contains SPF30, so is the perfect everyday foundation, however, it maybe isn’t the foundation to wear if you know you are getting lots of pictures taken i.e. a wedding because there may be flashback. The longevity is good and it lasts about 6 hours on my combination skin as long as I set it with powder. It wears away evenly, no patchiness whatsoever.

Now, the price. MAC is expensive and the foundation set me back £25.50, which is a lot but it will last me ages and it’s the best I’ve ever tried.

I’d reccomend this foundation to people with good skin that have very little to cover and also to people who are after a natural, your-skin-but-better finish. Maybe if you have oily skin though, avoid this as it feels quite greasy and hydrating!

So, I hope you’ve enjoyed this review! Let me know if you’ve tried MAC’s Studio Waterweight and what you think of it! Do you love it as much as me?

Take care,

Lucy x

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One By Sarah Crossan | Book Review

This year, my school is taking part in the Carnegie Shadowing programme, where a group of students (me included) read and review at least three of the eight shortlisted book in the running for the CLIP Carnegie Medal, the oldest children’s book award.

The first book I chose to read was One by Sarah Crossan and because I have to review it for the shadowing website, I thought I’d review it here, too, on The Book & Beauty Geek! Anyway, enough rambling, let’s begin…

One is about conjoined twins and best of friends, Tippi and Grace. They’ve been home-schooled all their life, but, then their family fall on hard times and the girls’ have no choice but to go to school. They expected to be taunted, feared, ogled at, but, apart from the occasional obnoxious note tacked to their locker, school was good. They had Yasmeen and Jon. But when Mum loses her job, Tippi and Grace feel they need to help, so agree to be the subjects of a documentary. Then, further disaster strikes, and it’s discovered Grace’s heart’s weak and the only way they have a chance of surviving is to be separated, something the girls’ had never dreamed of; they needed each other.

The story is told from the perspective of Grace, the quiet, more shy twin that lives in Tippi’s shadow. It’s set in Hoboken, New Jersey, and I do not think the location plays a part in the forward motion of the book. The book is written like a collection of poems – unusual but nice. It was very descriptive and excellently written.

I judge a book on not only it’s plot and the language but also how connected I feel to the characters. In One, I feel as if you really get to know all the characters, not just Tippi and Grace, so, bravo, Sarah Crossan! I think you’ve done a brill job!

A variety of themes are explored such as sisterhood, love and friendship, as well as making tough decisions.

What I really like about this book is how there’s no drivel; the story is always moving forward. The plot is has some major twists and turns, so we’re kept interested, intrigued to know what happens next.

What I didn’t like so much was the sad ending, but, I suppose it’s there to catch you off guard; I really wasn’t expecting what happened to happen!

Whilst it’s not my favourite book, it’s certainly not my least and is worth a read. I’d recommend this to readers aged 13 and up, perhaps?

I hope you’ve enjoyed this review! Don’t forget to subscribe to The Book & Beauty Geek and be notified whenever a new post goes up!

Take care,

Lucy x

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Elanor & Park By Rainbow Rowell | Book Review

Hello lovelies! Hope you’re having a fab day! Today I’ll be reviewing Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell. It’s a romance, the type of book that I wouldn’t normally reach for, but I’d heard so many people rave about it, that I just had to see what all the hype was about!

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I enjoyed Eleanor & Park, however, it’s not the best book I’ve read recently; I much preferred All The Bright Places, which I reviewed a few weeks ago (you can read that by clicking here!).

The story has two main characters, Eleanor & Park. Eleanor is new to the neighbourhood and all she wants is to fit in, but with unruly, red hair and mismatched clothing, she couldn’t stand out more! Park is the boy at the back of the bus who likes to keep himself to himself, but, then he meets Elanor and his life is changed forever. Over comic books and tape decks, they slowly fall in love. But Eleanor’s horrible stepfather, Richie, doesn’t want her dating, and Eleanor knows that if he finds out, he’ll send her away, or do worse. She’s also being bullied; someone at school, or so she thought, is writing horrid things on her exercise books. But then she makes a discovery and runs away… with the help of Park.

The story is told from both the perspective of Park and the perspective of Eleanor. At first, it’s kind of easy to get confused as to who’s talking because it’s third person, but then, as you get to know more and more about each character, the confusion disappears.

The book is usually always set in one of four places: Eleanor’s house, Park’s home, on the school bus or in the gym locker room. I say Eleanor’s house as opposed to home because it’s clear she hates it; never would she call it her home because at home, you should feel at ease, and she doesn’t – she’s always worried about upsetting Richie, her foul stepfather.

You feel you really get to know both characters because they’re so lifelike. In that sense, the book is written beautifully and some of the words that come from the characters’ mouths are like silk, flowing.

The main themes explored are love and youth. It’s an insight into growing up, and how puppy love can be true love, a sweet, heartwarming message, I think.

What I didn’t like so much was how slow I felt the plot moved forward. I know lots of people would disagree with this, but, that’s just my opinion: some bits were dragged out. It was only really towards the end that the story’s pace quickened; I wanted to find out what happened next.

The end was a cliffhanger, but one I that left me with a flutter of hope. I’d like to know what Eleanor’s postcard said exactly, but, if I was to take a guess as to what those three words were, I’d say they were ‘I love you’. This leaves me hopeful because they’re young and still in love, so anything could happen.

I’d recommend this book to mature readers aged 13 up, but only those who are willing to give this book time to get going.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this review! Let me know you’re thoughts on Eleanor & Park if you’ve read it, and don’t forget to like this post and subscribe to The Book & Beauty Geek whilst you’re here! It’s free and anyone can do it; all you need to do is enter your email address, which is 100% secure, then whenever I publish a new post, you’ll be notified!

Take care,

Lucy x

 

 

 

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The Culpeper | Review

Last Friday, my parents and I stayed overnight in The Culpeper, a 5-star pub, restaurant and now hotel located just off the trendy Brick Lane and partly owned by my uncle.

When I walked in, I was gobsmacked by how busy the pub was; it’s clearly the happening place to be. The interior was beautiful as well; there’s an industrial vintage look about it, which I love, love, love!

We headed up the stairs to the restaurant level, and Josh, the friendly manager, led us up another set of stairs to the bedrooms. There’re five in total, all with en suites. We stayed in Room One and had a view of the Gherkin. The rooms are done like the rest of the Culpeper, very industrial vintage! The walls are distressed natural plaster, and the headboard is a slab of wood with funky industrial bedside lamps sprouting from it. Our room also had an original fireplace, a scoop chair, a place to keep clothes and tea making facilities.

The en suite was really lovely with a large mirror and a spacious shower that was powerful and just the right temperature. The shampoo and shower gel provided smelt lovely, too.

I slept really well. Maybe because I was tired, or maybe because the rooms were fairly quiet with thick, floor-length curtains to block out the light. The bedding was incredibly soft, may I add.

In the morning, I had breakfast with my family and it was delicious. I had a pastry and scrambled egg that was cooked to perfection. The restaurant is flooded with light and the booths are incredibly comfy and open.

I was sad to leave and could have happily stayed another night or two; it was such an enjoyable experience! If you’re in the neck of the woods and looking for a place to stay, then I highly reccomend The Culpeper. It’s located in a great spot, a short walk from Spitalfields and a tube/train station.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this post! Don’t forget to subscribe to The Book & Beauty Geek and be notified whenever a post goes up!

Take care,

Lucy x

 

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How To Get Rid Of Dry Skin QUICK

If you suffer from dry skin, you’ll know it’s a right pain; not only does it make skin look dull and lifeless, makeup clings, which especially bothers someone like me, who keeps their makeup minimal because they don’t want to look as if they’re really wearing any.

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Of course, you can tackle dry skin with a rich moisturiser or a nourishing mask, but these work over time and an effective one might be expensive, so, if you want a quick fix that costs nothing, this is perfect, because all you’ll need is your usual moisturiser and some cotton wool pads!

Under my eyes is particularly dry, and if you have that same problem, then simply fold two cotton wool pads in half and squeeze a generous amount of your moisturiser onto each of them. Smear it slightly with a clean finger then press both gently onto the areas beneath your eyes. Leave for 5-10 minutes, then remove and the skin will feel so plump and hydrated!

If it’s your cheeks, forehead or chin that are dry, then you probably won’t need to fold the cotton wool in half!

I love, love, love this hack and I hope you do, too. It’s so quick and easy, yet truly effective! Apologies that this is such a short post; I hope you’ve enjoyed it all the same! Let me know if you have by either liking it, subscribing to The Book & Beauty Geek or commenting below!

Take care,

Lucy x

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What’s In My Travel Makeup Bag – London 2016

Hello lovelies! Hope you’re having a lovely week so far! Have you anything planned for the bank holiday weekend? We have; my parents and I are going to London to celebrate my Uncle’s 30th birthday, which will be good fun! Then, we’re staying overnight and doing a spot of shopping the next day! Exciting!


Anyway, today I thought I’d share with you the makeup I’m taking with me…

For primer, I’m taking the Nivea Post Shave Balm, which has a high glycerin content, so keeps makeup in place all day/night! It will be an essential especially when we’re partying!

The foundation I am going to take with me is the MAC’s Studio Waterweight, which is stunning! But because it has a rather dewy finish, I’ll definitely need to powder with my trusty Rimmel Stay Matte, which is obviously coming with me!

To contour and brighten under the eyes, I’ll be using the L’Oreal Sculpting Palette, a cream product that contains a cool toned contour and a highlighting concealer.

The bronzer I’m going to take is the Body Shop Honey Bronzer, because it’s great at adding a glow, and I can use it through my crease, as well.

And for adding a subtle flush of colour to my cheeks, I’ll be using Max Factor’s Creme Puff Blush in Lavish Mauve. It’s stunning, a pale pink with a slight shimmer running through it!

The highlighter I’ll be taking is The Balm’s Mary Lou, which is super-shimmery and will be ideal for both highlighting my cheekbones and using as an eyeshadow! It has a great, big mirror, as well.

Onto mascara, I’ll be taking my favourite: No7’s Velvet Lash! I use this everyday and it’s lengthens your lashes so much, as well as separating them!

Then, for eyeliner, I’ll be taking Miss Sporty’s Kohl Eyeliner. This is just really nice to tight line with, not an everyday step for me, but for a party, it’s a definite! It’s really soft, so doesn’t drag, and is also really easy to smudge out for a smokey effect.

I’m going to take two eyebrow products: the Maybelline Brow Pomade and the Rimmel Brow This Way Gel. At first, I really didn’t like the Brow Pomade because of it’s thick nib, but I discovered it gives amazing results applied with the Real Techniques Brow Brush; all I do is swipe the brush on the side of the crayon tip and then apply it to my brows (obviously!). And the Rimmel Brow Gel is simply a staple for me!

Finally, for lips, I’m taking the Barry M 168 Lipstick and also my Kiko 3D Gloss, both lovely products!

So that is all the makeup I’m taking to London! I’ve kept it to a minimum (kind of!) as we’ll be carrying our bags around the following day and I don’t want mine to be too heavy!

I hope you’ve enjoyed this post! What are you planning to do in the bank holiday weekend? Let me know in the comments and if you like The Book & Beauty Geek and would like to be notified every time a post goes up, then subscribe (it’s free)!

Take care,

Lucy x

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