Thursday, 16 January 2020

Looking Back on 2019

It’s that time again! My one blog post in which I pour out my heart and soul, sharing my woes and wonders of the past year. I think we can all agree that 2019 was…a lot. So let’s take a look back at what it did (or didn’t do, mostly) for me.

Last year kicked my ass in many ways (more on that later), which meant that once again, I didn’t have the level of motivation I wanted when it came to books. But considering I had a feeling at the start of 2019 that it was going to be a difficult year, I set myself achievable goals rather than trying to reach the level of reading I had a few years ago. I stopped pressuring myself to read The Newest Books Everyone’s Talking About, and decided to simply focus on what I wanted to pick up. Which meant that my year had quite a few rereads!

In terms of the goals I set for myself in last years post, I did quite well. I wanted to write more content that wasn’t just review after review after…you get the picture. Despite not being able to post much this year, a good portion of what I did post was original content. Though I still reviewed books I was passionate about sharing my opinion on, I let myself write the content I enjoyed. One of my favourite projects from last year was my Bookish Looks series, in which I attempted to recreate book character fashion using thrifted items. I had so much fun getting to mix two of my favourite hobbies. Though my stats were exceptionally low for my original posts compared to my reviews, they’re something I’m proud of because I was able to get creative and work on my own thing.

I also wanted to search for more blogs to love, which I did. I’ve been on top of my game when it comes to reading and commenting on blogs this year. I’m always looking for more content, so feel free to leave links to your favourite posts in the comments!

The biggest thing that made reading easier for me in 2019 was stepping away from my Norm. I discovered a couple of manga stores in my area this year that sell secondhand manga for low prices, so I was finally able to get my hands on some that I’ve been wanting to read for a while. I took a step back from YA and allowed myself time to read those instead, and it was one of the best decisions I made this year. After having that little break, I've become motivated to read YA again.

hello to two of my fave manga boys
That’s mostly it for books this year. I did my own thing and even though I still didn’t get to read as much as I wanted to (yay to terrible mental health sucking away every ounce of motivation!), I’m still proud that I stuck to my goals. The only thing I’m really disappointed in is that I didn’t get to go to any book events this year.

  • Redesign this goddamn blog. The past year has been my absolute worst in terms of stats. It’s not entirely down to my design, but I’m willing to bet it plays a little part. My design is not mobile functional. Most people read blogs from their mobiles. You’re probably reading this on your phone right now and having to zoom in to actually see the text. The problem is that I’ve always designed my blog myself because I can’t afford to actually buy a nice, functioning one. I also can’t afford to switch my blog to Wordpress. I can’t design myself something that works for me whilst having a working mobile site on Blogger. My two options are to pay for one that suits me or learn more about coding and fix it myself. I’m completely broke, so guess which one I’m going with. Get ready for months of me crying in utter despair whilst I figure this one out.
  • Find friendly bloggers to chat to??? I’ve tried my best every year to try and get more into the blogging the community, but it never works out for me. It might be down to my crushingly awkward personality and my love for tweeting excitedly in all-caps (someone genuinely thought I was fighting with my best friend once when really we just communicate in Shout), but I never seem to find people I clique with. BLOGGERS, PLEASE BE MY FRIEND.  
  • Get back to BookTube. I’ve let my channel die a horrible, painful death over the past two years. My anxiety and complete lack of self-confidence have taken advantage of the crappy things that have happened in my personal life, and made it near impossible for me to get through filming a video.
  • Reread books I love. Yes, I’m making this an actual goal. Discovering new books is a beautiful experience, but there are so many books I’ve found myself wanting to dive back into over the past year rather than picking up a fresh one. When it comes to series, I have a habit of never reading them again once they’re finished, no matter how much I love them, so for 2020 I have a list of series I want to relive. 
  • Continue writing the blog posts I want to. Creating original content, mixing books with my other hobbies, WRITING LISTS – I want to do more of it in 2020, even if no one is reading it. This blog is for me before anyone else, and I really need to remember that fact over the coming year.
If you’re only interested in reading about my Bookish Breakdown of 2019, then you can probably leave this post here because I'm going to waffle on about everything else!

2019. Oh boy. If you read my post from last year, or you follow me on twitter where I tweet about my constant struggle with this beast, then you might know that I started suffering with major sleep problems towards the end of 2018. At the very start of 2019, I was officially diagnosed with good old Insomnia. YAY. To recap: I’m a 27-year-old who can’t spend the night away from home without it kickstarting a horribly vicious cycle of ABSOLUTELY NO SLEEP. It’s as delightful as it sounds. Basically, it started after an extremely anxious trip to London for a concert, and it all went downhill from there. This year, I thought that maybe tackling it head-on was the way to go. I booked another one-night trip away, thinking I could simply train my brain to get used to it again. I was so wrong. In January, I went to see one of my favourite bands. I was traveling to the location on the day of the concert, so I literally only had to be in a hotel for ONE NIGHT. Did that make things easier on my Anxiety Brain? Absolutely not. I didn’t sleep a wink the night before traveling, I somehow managed to sleep for two hours in the hotel with the use of a sleep aid, but then I got home. AND COULDN’T FALL ASLEEP FOR TWO DAYS. I was awake for about 60 hours and ended up in an emergency doctors appointment, crying my eyes out.

despite running on no sleep, my friend Jasmine was an absolute gem at keeping me from having a complete breakdown and taking me to some indie London bookshops
I’ve been working with my doctor on the issue ever since, and I’ve started the lengthy process towards getting therapy for both my sleep issues and my worsening anxiety in general. Throwing myself head-first into tackling things wasn’t a good idea. My doctor is helping me with Baby Steps to take instead, such as making sure I can travel home after A Thing, even if it means all night on a coach, just so my brain doesn’t get overwhelmed by the pressure I put on myself to be a Functioning Adult. Right now, I still panic the night before things to the point that I can’t sleep. It’s ruined days out and plans with friends. My brain wants me to be at home by certain times, otherwise it’ll throw my whole night off. It’s a mess. But I’m working towards fighting it.

Outside of my anxiety/insomnia cocktail, there have been things in my personal life over the year that have kept me away from my blog and the book community in general. This has been my quietest year on Book Twitter to date. My sister went through a really hard time in the summer that I won’t go into detail about, but it was a very difficult few months for my family. My dad also had some health problems that left us all super worried towards the end of the year, hence the complete disappearance of posts. Things aren't better, but they’re being worked on, so fingers crossed we have a better time of it in 2020!

The year wasn’t a total wipe out – incredible! I worked towards some of my own personal goals. For the past five or so years, I’ve made a resolution to start learning a language. I always fail after about two weeks. But in 2019, I actually stuck with it. Thanks to the slightly terrifying Duolingo owl, I’ve been learning something new every day. I’m determined to keep hold of my streak throughout 2020.

Another thing I wanted to do was get back to drawing, a hobby I’ve jumped in and out of since high school. This year, I took part in Inktober and it changed everything. I’ve been following YouTube tutorials ever since and I’m hoping I’ll actually learn something this time!

i spent the majority of october drawing my fave characters
I donated my hair again! After last years failed charity campaign, where I fell painfully short of my goal, I decided not to try and raise money this time around. But I donated another 12 inches of hair to the Little Princess Trust, and I couldn't be happier. 

So, that was my year in a 1500 word nutshell. Nothing too exciting, filled with problems, but I got through it, and that alone is something to be proud of.

What has 2019 brought for you? Please let me know!

Tuesday, 7 January 2020

BLOG TOUR: Paper Avalanche by Lisa Williamson

Today I’m excited to be taking part in the blog tour for Paper Avalanche, the latest novel by one of my favourite UKYA authors, Lisa Williamson! For my stop on the tour, I’m going to be sharing my thoughts on all three of these wonderful stories. Let’s jump right in with the newest.

Paper Avalanche

Pages: 384 | Publisher: David Fickling Books | Buy The Book: Waterstones

I’m always looking for YA that tackles topics I don’t often see in fiction, so Paper Avalanche immediately called out to me. Ro Snow wants to be invisible to the world, resigning herself to the fact that she can’t have a normal life. She won’t allow anyone to get close to her for fear they’ll discover the truth about her mum and the home they live in. Bonnie is a compulsive hoarder, and Ro does everything she can to keep social services off their back. But then she meets Tanvi, and her whole world changes. 

There’s nothing I love more than a story that focuses on the importance of friendship. The friends we make throughout our lives and the experiences we share with them all play a part in shaping who we are. Tanvi doesn’t force Ro to change anything about her life. She simply helps her to see what she should be doing, as a teenager making her way through high school. She’s been caring for her mum for so long that she’s become more like the parent than the child. 

  • Tanvi. Ro’s growing friendship with Tanvi is the most heart-warming part of this story. They’ve led completely different lives and have such contrasting personalities, yet they still manage to share a bond. 
  • Eye-opening. Hoarding is a word that people throw around without understanding what it’s truly like to experience. What I loved about this story is that instead of focusing on the person who hoards, it shows us what it’s like to be a person who needs to live alongside it. Ro doesn’t have anywhere else she can call home, and she feels responsible for looking after her mum. There are so many young people who might not have the same home environment as Ro, but are in a situation where they feel trapped by their own home life. This story gives us a glimpse into that world. 
  • Ro Snow. Everything about her growth throughout the book is inspiring to read. 
  • Fast paced. Paper Avalanche manages to cover so much without feeling rushed. We get a good feel for what Ro’s life is like day-to-day whilst seeing how she deals with things long-term. 

Stories like this are an important tool for shedding light on things we don’t often understand. Ro might be fictional, but young people like her deserve to know that there are people to support them and that their voices should always be heard.  

The Art of Being Normal

This book was love at first blurb for me. From the moment I heard about it, I was desperate to get my hands on it. It follows David Piper, a character who was born a boy, but wants to be a girl, and Leo Denton, a new boy at school who’d rather blend into the background. Filled with lively and witty characters, and packed full of raw emotion, it’s a story that made me both laugh and cry. It became an instant favourite. 

  • This book taught me so much. It’s a perfect example of why we need diverse stories in YA to openly discuss important topics. 
  • Reminds people that they are not alone. Whilst every person has their own induvial experiences, there will be people out there who connect with the emotions of the characters in this story. 
  • It’s honest. School can already be difficult for so many young people, let alone someone who is going through something as personal as David’s journey. This book doesn’t shy away from showing the harm bullies and ignorance can do. 
  • Friendships and family. The very heart of this story. We’re shown how important it is to have people there for us, and to allow people to support us when we need it.

My full review for this story was posted back in 2015, if you’d like to read more!

All About Mia

Mia is the middle child. Her older sister, Grace, is as clever as they come and everyone adores her. Her younger sister, Audrey, is destined for Olympic success. Mia feels like an afterthought. With no idea what her ‘thing’ is in life, she struggles to find her place after Grace returns home from her gap year. 

Mia is the exact type of character I love. She’s someone who has a true learning curve throughout the story, making plenty of mistakes and hurting people along the way, but learning in the process. Characters like Mia always feel authentic and true to reality. There are so many students of her age who have no idea what their next step is in life, and everyone copes with it differently. But we can find our place in the end, no matter how pointless it can seem. 

  • The characters. Whilst Mia herself is a wonderful main character, her family and friends are just as interesting. Seeing their relationships shift over the course of the story had me hooked. 
  • Relatable. Though my life is very different from the one Mia leads, her feelings towards her future are ones that myself and so many others are familiar with. 
  • It’s all about the journey. Mia isn’t always a likeable character. She makes bad choices, she can be selfish, and she doesn’t seem to care. But the further we delve into her story, the more we understand why she acts the way she does. Learning slowly along the way makes for a better pay off at the end.

I’m so grateful I’ve been able to read these three stories. Lisa’s characters always stay with me long after I’ve closed the books. I look forward to her future projects! 

Be sure to check out the fantastic blogs taking part in the rest of the tour:

Tuesday, 17 December 2019

REVIEW: Scars Like Wings by Erin Stewart

Pages: 368
Format: ARC Paperback
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Genre: Contemporary
Release Date: October 3rd 2019
Buy the Book: Book Depository

Everyone has scars. Some are just easier to see ...

16-year-old Ava Gardener is heading back to school one year after a house fire left her severely disfigured. She’s used to the names, the stares, the discomfort, but there’s one name she hates most of all: Survivor. What do you call someone who didn’t mean to survive? Who sometimes wishes she hadn’t?

When she meets a fellow survivor named Piper at therapy, Ava begins to feel like she’s not facing the nightmare alone. Piper helps Ava reclaim the pieces of Ava Before the Fire, a normal girl who kissed boys and sang on stage. But Piper is fighting her own battle for survival, and when Ava almost loses her best friend, she must decide if the new normal she’s chasing has more to do with the girl in the glass—or the people by her side. 
*WARNING* There are some mild spoilers in this review since I don't think I'd be able to explain what I did and didn't enjoy about the story without delving into the plot a little!

I wish I’d enjoyed this one more than I did. I’m always looking out for YA stories that shed light on something we don’t often read about. Ava’s journey as a survivor is exactly the type of story I actively seek out. This book sounded so empowering, but it didn’t have the impact that I thought it would have on me. Though I admired Ava greatly, I felt like this story could have done more. 

Ava was the main character of this story, but I found myself more drawn towards Piper. Maybe because the story wasn’t told from her perspective, so we couldn’t get a clear picture of what she was thinking, but I wanted to know more about her thoughts and feelings. Though I did enjoy Ava’s journey to accepting her life after the fire that changed everything for her. The building of her relationship with her aunt and uncle was a beautiful part of the story.

My main problem with this story came down to Asad. It was nothing about his character (I actually ADORED him and he added so much personality to every scene he was in), it was more to do with him being the Designated Love Interest. That aspect of the story didn’t appeal to me in the slightest, and the revelation of him actually being in love with Piper only made it worse. It’s just my personal opinion, but I think I would have preferred this book simply focusing on the friendship between Ava and Piper. There was a level of toxicity to their friendship that I wish they could have addressed and grown from, but it never happened, and I ended the book feeling like their story wasn’t as complete as it could have been. 

My other problem lay in the fact that these characters just didn’t make me feel things the way I expected them to. I felt like there should have been more emotional growth shown within the story. The plot was just like any other YA story set in a high school, but these characters had been through so much and had a lot more to offer that what the plot gave them. 

  • Strong Start. The first fifty or so pages to this story are brutal and raw. The introduction to Ava and what she’s been through is told perfectly. 
  • Addressing Character Problems. This is a book that explores the flaws of the characters and tries to work through them, leaving us with a better version of the characters we met at the start. 
  • Well Researched. The thought and care put in to the telling of Ava’s story shines through on the page. 

Whilst this is a story that stands out from the YA crowd, I expected more than what it gave me. There are some wonderful moments that made me proud of Ava and her growth as a character, but it wasn’t as empowering and strong as I hoped it would be. 

Royal Rating:

Friday, 18 October 2019

6 Fictional Pets I Wish I Owned

A year ago today, I had to say goodbye to my best friend of twelve years, and it was one of the hardest things I’ve had to do in my life. I tend not to do many personal posts on my blog, but I can’t write this list without telling you about my gorgeous dog, Dilly. 

Growing up, I’d always wanted a dog, but our house was too small and our backyard was basically non-existent. When I turned fourteen, we ended up losing our home to the council, who bought out our street in order to demolish the houses and build even smaller new ones. My parents were devastated because they couldn’t afford to buy another place of their own and had no choice but to rent. The only upside to not owning our own home was that the rented place was bigger, had a garden, and the landlord allowed pets. Given the incredibly difficult year we’d faced, my parents finally decided that adding a dog to the family would bring us some much needed happiness.  

she was by my side through high school, college, and university!
We always knew we were going to rescue a dog. Both my parents had grown up around rescue dogs and all of us agreed that we’d rather give a dog a second chance than go to a breeder. After a few potential adoptions fell through, our local rescue centre ended up with a young mixed-breed who had been abandoned by her previous owner, was underweight and scared of new people. But we completely fell in love with her. After a few visits, we brought her home and named her Dilly! 

my favourite partner in crime
When rehoming a rescue dog, it’s always going to be a bumpy journey, but we got her weight back up and she settled in perfectly. Despite being scared of strangers, she was affectionate with us from the very start, and was running to introduce herself to new people within just a few weeks! It was amazing to see how much she developed in those first months. It completely baffles me that someone would give up on a dog so young. The selfish part of me wishes her former owners could have seen the incredible pet she became as part of our family, but the rational part of me knows that they don’t deserve to. 

Dilly gave us twelve years of the happiest memories we could have wished for. She was lucky enough to go through life without any health problems and she barely even slowed down in her old age. At the end of her life, she developed a quick-growing tumour that caused her no pain to the point that we didn’t know anything was wrong until just a few days before she passed away. We were lucky enough to say goodbye to her at home. She carried so much love for everyone around her that she even though she couldn’t stand properly in her final hours, she still smothered our wonderful vet in kisses. That was the kind of dog she was. 

I’m so glad I had the chance to welcome her into my life. Pets can bring us so much joy, and they love us unconditionally. They really do become an extra family member. In honour of her, I wanted to share my favourite fictional pets whose stories wouldn’t be the same without them. 

(Half of these are cats because apparently YA books love cats)

Bieber from Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda
Golden Retriever, need I say more? He’s the thing that Leah loves most about Simon, and I don’t blame her. I was only a little disappointed that Movie Bieber was different to Book Bieber because Movie Bieber was adorable in his own way.

Church from any of Cassie’s Shadowhunter books
No Shadowhunter series would be complete without an appearance from Church. He’s always lurking around somewhere, helping out in his own way. At this point, I wouldn’t be surprised if we ended up with a series purely about his adventures. 

Chainsaw from The Raven Cycle
The bond between Ronan and his raven is one of the most adorable aspects of The Raven Cycle for me. She shows us the softer side of a character who, at first, comes across as cold and intimidating. But Ronan would do anything for her.  

Spike from The Mediator Series
One of the first fictional pets I fell in love with. Spike is a ginger fluffball with slight anger issues, but he’s wonderful all the same. He becomes Suze’s accidental pet, but I can’t imagine him not being part of the story. 

Hedwig from Harry Potter
Could you ask for a more loyal pet than Hedwig? She’s by Harry’s side from the start of his Hogwarts journey as a vital part of his life in the wizarding world. Ultimately, she gives up her life for him in what is quite possibly one of the most devastating deaths in the entire series. WAS THERE ANY NEED, MS ROWLING? 

Angus from the Confessions of Georgia Nicholson

I very nearly had Hedwig as my favourite, but I’d be lying to myself. Angus is by far my favourite fictional pet. These books literally define my teen years, and for the longest time they made me pester my parents for a cat. This series really wouldn’t be the same without Angus. I remember my heart actually skipping a beat when he ended up in danger. I think we all need an Angus in our lives.

Not a book, but still fictional, Makkachin from Yuri On Ice

Makkachin is THE BEST BOY. No question about it.

These are just some of my favourite fictional pets. I know there are plenty more out there, but these are just the ones that have stuck with me the most. Pets can be just as important as any other character!

Before I go, I want to give a quick shoutout to my local rescue centre for all of their amazing work. Rehoming a dog can be an incredibly difficult job, especially taking into account what some of the dogs in centres have been through. But every dog requires work, so if you are thinking about getting a dog, please consider rescuing. There are so many dogs out there who need families to love them and give them a little bit of patience to find their paws in life. It’s been the most rewarding thing I’ve ever done.

A couple of months ago, my family was able to rescue another dog. He’s a three-year-old Jack Russell who’s had an incredibly difficult life so far, and he needs a lot of work to help lessen his anxiety, but we’re slowly making progress. Here’s to the next set of happy memories!

Friday, 4 October 2019

Ten Halloween Reads That Aren't Actually That Scary

IT'S SPOOPY SEASON. My favourite time of year is finally upon us, and I can't wait to settle down with some good books. Not sure what to read in the run up to Halloween? Want an autumnal book but not a massive Horror fan? I've got you covered! Since I don't actually read too much Horror myself (it's one of those genres that I do appreciate but don't naturally gravitate towards), I thought I'd compile a list of books that I find perfect for the Halloween season without being too scary.

10. Uprooted by Naomi Novik

This book is a twisted fairytale that's perfect for this time of year, especially given the fact that the majority of the plot revolves around, well, trees. And don't we all love thinking about trees with their pretty orange leaves in October? It's also the right amount of dark to leave you just a lil creeped out.

9. Northern Lights by Philip Pullman

The first book in the His Dark Materials trilogy is one of the best reads to inject some adventure into the cold nights of autumn. I'm planning to reread it this month if I get the chance, in preparation for the BBC adaptation later this year. I'm so ready to see a decent version of this onscreen.

8. A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness

Hands up if this story ruined you emotionally! 🙋 If you haven't read it yet, then you better prepare your heart for an emotional ruining. Though it revolves around a monster showing up, the scariest part of this story is the real horrors we have to face in life, like dealing with the suffering of those we love most in the world.

7. The Mediator by Meg Cabot

You might have heard me mention a few times that this series was my absolute favourite when I was a teenager, and it still has a special place in my heart to this very day. Suze sending spirits to the afterlife makes for a perfect plot as we approach Halloween. Who doesn't love a good ghost story?

6. Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo 

This is my gentle reminder that if you haven't picked up this book yet, PLEASE DO. The aesthetics of this book alone scream Halloween. With the cast just being announced for the Netflix adaptation, there's never been a better time to jump into the Grishaverse.

5. Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

To be fair, any of Cassie's books are fitting for this time of year, but The Infernal Devices remains superior. This trilogy is packed with everything. It also has Magnus Bane, so what more could you want? I'm always here for anything steampunk, and the clockwork army is creepy as hell.

4. The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater 

Hello to one of my favourite series' of all time. I'm hoping to reread them before Call Down the Hawk is upon us! If you've never read The Raven Cycle before, this series is full of spoopy things to enjoy and an amazing group of characters to fall in love with. These books never fail to be magical and exciting.

3. Howl's Moving Castle

I couldn't complete this list without including one of my magical favourites that I recently reread to get myself in the Halloween mood. This book is wild in the best possible way, and despite everything going on in the plot, it's also hilarious. Like many people, I discovered it through the Studio Ghibli movie of the same name, but now I adore the book just as much. (Probably more, at this point. Book Howl is everything).

2. Carry On by Rainbow Rowell

Arguably my favourite book of all time? I'm terrible at choosing favourites but this one is waaaaay up there. I never even have the words to fully describe to someone how much I love Carry On. I usually just revert to screaming at them to read it. In Caps Lock for dramatic effect. I've lived and breathed this story since it was released, and I reread it every October. The best part about rereading it this year was that I got to start the sequel immediately after. (I still can't believe we're being blessed with more content after all these years, what a time to be alive). If you haven't been dragged in already, then now would be the perfect time to give it a try.

1. Harry Potter by J.K.Rowling 

I'm very predictable, I know, but if you can't use Halloween as an excuse to get cosy and reread Harry Potter then WHAT ARE YOU DOING WITH YOUR LIFE. It's like a warm blanket and a nice cup of tea with a side order of dark magic. Not to mention, there's Halloween at Hogwarts, which is enough to make anyone jealous and cursing the fact that they never got their Hogwarts letter. If you're stuck for what to read in October, you can always count on the Golden Trio.


Any Manga fans in the house? I'm currently reading Seraph of the End and it's a PERFECT Halloween read. There's vampires and apocolyptic viruses, and someone, somewhere, is probably losing an arm. But it's WONDERFUL and the characters are great.

These are just some of my personal favourites to read at this time of year, but there's so many books out there that give off strong Spoopy Season vibes without actually being all-out terrifying. I love anything with ghosts or supernatural creatures in it to give it that creepy edge.

What are some of your favourite books to read at Halloween? Let me know in the comments?

Monday, 30 September 2019

Bookish Looks #3: Lara Jean from To All The Boys I've Loved Before

It's the last post in my Bookish Looks series for Second Hand September! This time around I'm attempting to recreate looks inspired by actual style icon, Lara Jean Covey from To All The Boys I've Loved Before. This idea was given to me by my lovely friend Jasmine, and I'm so grateful she suggested it because both on the page and on the screen, Lara Jean has some of the CUTEST outfits ever.

This is a trilogy that I absolutely adore, so I was happy to see it take on a new life in the film adaptation that dropped on Netflix. THE AESTHETICS IN THIS MOVIE 😍 I was excited to attempt some Lara Jean outfits because my own wardrobe is filled with similar pieces. As always, they're all bought from charity shops!

I'm a huge fan of cute blouses, especially patterned ones. Half of my wardrobe is Stripes or Polka Dots. This £1 one from Age UK is a particular favourite of mine that I think suits the Lara Jean Aesthetic. I didn't have an orange blouse to match the cover, but I'm so in love with this sky blue colour. The skirt is my trusty £2 Cancer Research skirt which you may or may not have seen in my previous post. 

My next look attempted to recreate an iconic outfit from the film adaptation. This is something I'd wear on a regular basis anyway, so it wasn't too much of a challenge!

  • Top - £1 from a local community charity shop. This place sells all of their clothes for £1 so it's one of my absolute favourite places to find gems like this one. It's a jumper but it's still thin enough to where if it's warm, and can be layered to keep cosy in the winter. 
  • Skirt - £1 from Age UK. I love a good maroon skirt, especially corduroy ones like this.  

  • Necklace - 50p from a car boot sale. I don't wear necklaces very often but this one owns my heart. 
  • Converse - £5 from Preloved Kilo
  • Backpack - Abandoned by my sister, taken in and given a new life by me. It's thriving under my care. 
My next outfit is another movie-inspired look. Again, this is something I'd be likely to wear myself, so it was easy enough to put together. Stripes and skirts are my Go-To looks.

  • Shirt - £1 from Age UK. It's quite hilarious how many variations of striped shirts I have in my wardrobe. I'm constantly being reminded by family members that I don't need any more stripes 🙄
  • Skirt - £2 from Age UK. Nothing beats a basic denim skirt.

To wrap things up, here are my boots! Similar to the ones that make Jen give Lara Jean a military salute, they're my favourite chunky boots that I wear EVERYWHERE. They're falling apart at this point but I love them. I picked them up for £3 at Cancer Research and they've been with me for about four years now. They're my trusty Concert-Going boots because the heels give me a much needed boost when it comes to actually seeing things in a standing pit with how short I am. I know a lot of people tend to shy away from buying shoes in charity shops but some of my longest-lasting shoes are secondhand.

the shorts that i'm wearing here were £1 from Salvation Army
So, that's it! I had a lot of fun piling clothes together in honour of Lara Jean. She remains one of the best dressed contemporary characters ever.

I've loved putting together these outfits for Second Hand September, and I hope you've enjoyed reading them. Rooting through charity shops can find you some great pieces. If you'd like to see me do more of these posts in the future, potentially as a monthly feature, then please let me know in the comments!

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