Waffles in Antwerp (Belgium)

So I recently went to Antwerp (in Belgium) for a couple of days, during which I ate a couple of waffles. And then a couple more waffles. Mmm, waffles…

But as much fun as it is to eat waffles, it was even more fun to photograph and write about the noms. And so, here we are!

Antwerp has a cathedral. And also waffles.

Antwerp has a cathedral. And also waffles.

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Reviews: November (Xenophobes, Dumas, and more chick lit)

November was, in short, an insane month on my end. I took the last week off to “catch-up” with “life things” (such as going to Belgium and doing NaNoWriMo and reading), which was when I managed to read these books (few as they are). Anyway, books!

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2015 Authors A to Z Reading Challenge – Sign-up

After spending the past year working on Escape With Dollycas Into a Good Book’s Alphabet Soup Challenge (for which I’m nearing completion–you can follow my progress here), I had a brainwave and thought I’d like to do something similar next year, but this time for authors instead of book titles. And so, with great pleasure and excitement, I’d like to announce that I will be hosting the 2015 Authors A to Z Reading Challenge!

2015-authors-banner
Here are the details/rules:

– The challenge runs from 1 January to 31 December 2015
– Read a book written by authors with last names from A to Z, and try to collect every letter of the alphabet
– Only last names count, so William Shakespeare would fall under S, not W
– Speaking of Shakespeare, the books you read may fall under any form/genre: prose, poetry, drama; fiction, non-fiction, academic monographs…
– Your books don’t have to be “physical” either–ebooks and audiobooks are more than welcome!
– Crossovers with other challenges and re-reads are also more than welcome!
– You do not need to have a blog or review the books in order to participate–having a list somewhere (such as GoodReads) is fine
– Come December 2015, I’ll be making a post for you to submit your completed challenges. If you manage to finish by 31 Dec 2015, then you’ll be in the running for a booktastic prize draw!

How to join:

– If you’re a blogger, grab the challenge banner and link back to this post to help spread the word and encourage others to join! Fill out the form below, and include a link to your challenge sign-up post (not to your overall blog).
– If you’re a non-blogger, keep track of your authors list any way you wish (I know quite a few people start up a challenge bookshelf on Goodreads), and use the form below to fill out your details (and perhaps a link to your challenge bookshelf, if you’re setting one up).

If you want to follow my blog, I may post special challenge-related announcements throughout the year; alternatively, just check back during December 2015. If you have any questions, please feel free to drop me a comment.

And that’s it, really! Happy reading, and all the best with the challenge!

Reviews: July to October, with quite a bit of YA (and some “classics”)

Hihihihiii from Belfast! I know it’s been aaaaaages since I’ve posted, but things have been rather hectic with the move from Sydney back to the UK. In addition, I had quite a few writing projects going on during August (hence no books were read then!), and I’m now back to my PhD, which comes with its own set of eyeball-killing books… Anyway, here’s what I’ve been reading over the last few months–some amazing titles, and some awful ones (unfortunately).

39. Lauren Oliver – Delirium (2 July)
40. Elizabeth Harrower – In Certain Circles (17 July)
41. Alice Munro – Dear Life (31 July)
42. Kim Harrison — Dead Witch Walking (12 September)
43. Natsume Soseki – Kokoro (trans. Meredith McKinney) (14 September)
44. Lois Lowry – Gathering Blue (20 September)
45. Lauren Willig – The Secret History of the Pink Carnation (28 September)
46. Classical Literary Criticism (3 Oct)
47. Cath Crowley – Graffiti Moon (4 Oct)
48. Anne Bishop – Written in Red (10 Oct)
49. Claudia Carroll – A Very Accidental Love Story (25 Oct)

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Reviews: Fall On Your Knees and The Hours

Happy Australian Financial New Year! On this monumental day, we have reviews of the two books I’ve been enjoying over the last two weeks or so!

37. Ann-Marie MacDonald – Fall On Your Knees (26 June)

I don’t remember when I got my copy, but I think I purchased it after hearing about it on Oprah’s Book Club over a decade ago. Anyway, I finally picked it up, and…wow.

37 - Fall On Your Knees

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Aria Restaurant, Sydney

Let’s deviate from our regular onslaught of book reviews and book love, and talk about food! Namely, the super amazing dinner I had with my good friend Anika on Wednesday, which still has me sighing in contentment at its recollection. And then I thought, well, why not write about my experience? (Yes, I’m blogging about food, and including loads of photos. What a sure way to make one hungry…)

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Reviews: A little semi-mid-June update (with 3 YA books!)

I’ve been sitting on this update for aaaaaages, and, it being a Sunday evening, thought it’ll be a good idea to post this before a new week begins. I’m the lead (read: only) writer for Regency Love, a Regency-set iOS game/interactive novel, and have been working on new content for the app. It’s great fun, but significantly cuts down my reading time!

30. Gabrielle Zevin – The Collected Works of A. J. Fikry (19 May)
32. Amanda Hocking – Wake (1 June)
33. Annie Proulx – The Shipping News (7 June)
34. Jo Riccioni – The Italians at Cleat’s Corner Store (15 June)
35. Lois Lowry – The Giver (18 June)
36. Aeschylus – The Oresteia: Agamemnon, The Libation Bearers, The Eumenides (trans. Robert Fagles) (19 June)

(In case you’re wondering, 31 was The Theban Plays, about which I’ve already posted.)


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Ancient May-hem: Sophocles’ Theban Plays and Wrap-up

Alas, I was unable to get through as many Classics as I would’ve liked in May, and only managed to finish one more book after the Aristotle. But hey, just because the month is over doesn’t mean the Ancient Awesomeness has to stop!

31. Sophocles – The Theban Plays (trans. E. F. Watling, Penguin) (23 May)

31 - Theban Plays

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Ancient May-hem: Finishing Aristotle’s Ethics

I finished the Nichomachean Ethics over the weekend, and have continued to process it throughout the week. It’s just such a tremendous work, and I can see myself revisiting it quite regularly in the future. I’ve already recommended it to a whole bunch of my friends, and I hope they—and you—will give it a go, because it’s really quite eye opening!

So, after the stunning introduction in Book I, Aristotle goes on to talk about the virtues of character and virtues of thought, and gives a very good idea of what each is and does.

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Ancient May-hem: A Stunning Start with Aristotle’s Ethics (Book I)

Almost a week into the Ancient May-hem Reading Challenge, and I have an announcement to make: I am crawling through the challenge at a reeeeeally sloooooow paaaaaaaace.

No, seriously.

EthicsSo far, I’ve only managed to get through Book I of Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics (more commonly known as the Ethics). That’s not a lot of reading being done. However, there’s been a lot of thinking being done, and that has been incredible. Need a distinction between quantity and quality? Look no further.

I decided to make this special post because I was so inspired by what I’ve read and learnt so far that I wanted to share it with you, and because, oh boy, my mind has been blown, and I feel my life is about to be changed.

Seriously.*

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