Sunday, 23 April 2017

Adele | live in Concert

Seeing Adele live in concert was as amazing as you’d imagine. My sisters, mum and I went to see Adele when she came to Adelaide, back in March. The atmosphere that welled up in the cavernous space of the Adelaide Oval was really something, especially when Adele begun singing the first notes of Hello, still veiled behind the giant curtain, and the audience went crazy.

It always takes a few songs for my ears to adjust to the vibrating loudness of concerts, but even with that the first song of the concert was spine-tingling. Hello is one of my favourite songs and was a perfect opening. Other highlights were hearing Water Under The Bridge and Set Fire To The Rain, both sounded incredible live.
And then there was perhaps my favourite part of concerts, the banter. Adele is hilarious. I’d have happily just listened to her stories all night, but then again you wouldn’t want to miss hearing her vocals in that atmosphere. In any atmosphere, really. She’s also so warm and down to earth. I’m even more of a fan after seeing her live than I was before.

It was such a great night out, singing along, laughing and dancing with the girls. I love that it’s a side effect of going to concerts that afterward, when you listen to the CD, the memories of that live rendition and that night echo in your head and make the music that bit more special.

(And yes, I collected the confetti!)

Sunday, 16 April 2017

Bits and Bobs #3

READ | My uni reading list is almost done! Currently reading The Talented Mr Ripley by Patricia Highsmith, with The Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad to go!

WRITE | Planning to revise some stories to start submitting to various places, plus looking at getting back into my novel planning.

WATCH/GO | Been going to the cinema a lot lately, which is quite unusual but extremely enjoyable! Saw Logan and Ghost in the Shell with the buds, both were enjoyable enough but had odd plot structures.
Also, watched Rouge One last night. There were some weird things but I really enjoyed it.

GET | I’ve acquired a delightful number of books recently. The Good People by Hannah Kent at Writers Week (which she signed), The Song of Lunch by Christopher Reid (a gift from a friend) and Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë (won in a giveaway).

ETC. | The last week I’ve been back at home because of the uni break. Unfortunately, I’ve also been a bit sick but getting better with awhile left to enjoy home. My brother set up a makeshift desk for me to study at and I’m working hard to set myself up well for the next term!

Also, Happy Easter! Here’s to a glorious, chocolate-filled long weekend.

Saturday, 8 April 2017

Book Series | The Extraordinaires

Kingsley Ward’s wolfishness was a problem. If it weren’t the howling, it was the occasional desire to bite boorish people, which was rarely acceptable, no matter how boorish the boor. If 1908 were going to be a good year, however, he would have to maintain his control when it was his turn to walk onto the stage of the Alexandra Theatre. 

The Extraordinaires series is a favourite of mine. Written by one of my favourite authors, Michael Pryor, it’s full of fun, adventure, witty dialogue and great characters all nicely packaged in two well written novels.
What can I say about this series without sounding like a crazy fangirl? Probably nothing, I’ll continue nevertheless. The series follows the adventures of Kingsley, an aspiring escapologist. He was raised by wolves and is extremely loveable. Kingsley is aided by the fabulous Evadne, who’s sassy, clever, layered and interesting while avoiding becoming one of those all capable, completely flawless ‘strong’ female characters. The adventures these two get up to are exciting, unexpected and rollicking good fun.

Book one, The Extinction Gambit, sees Kingsley getting caught up in a plot for world domination, immortal sorcerers, Neanderthals, underground worlds and magic.
Book two, The Subterranean Stratagem, continues the adventures but becomes more personal, focusing more on Kingsley’s quest to uncover his mysterious past. The twists and turns are plentiful and satisfying and it’s funny, the entrance of the character Finny is one of my favourite moments of the novel.

Both books have great pace, stories and an array of interesting characters that keep you entertained and interested. The second book is my favourite by a smidgeon, but both are amazing self-contained stories.
One of the things that I love about these books is how Pryor handles multiple points of view to give the reader more access to what’s happening in the story, creating tension by letting the reader know more than any single character. What makes this even more special and delightful is how each different point of view it written differently to make you feel like you are in the minds of these characters.

In a lot of ways the series is similar to Pryor’s outstandingly amazing The Laws of Magic series, yet equally it’s quite different. It’s similar in that it’s set in an early 20th century Britain with magic, has a sassy female character and an extremely likeable male protagonist. But it is different in how it sets up magic, the dynamic between the two leads, its use of multiple points of view and the overall feel of the world and story.
If you loved Pryor’s Laws of Magic series (and why wouldn't you?), I think you’ll love this.

I’m incredibly sad there is currently no third novel coming in the foreseeable future, but at least I am able to reread the glorious two that are available to me!

Sunday, 2 April 2017

Quote | Nothing is the New Black

Currently very much looking forward to the uni break coming up. However, I won’t be lounging around, doing nothing (well, not all of the time), rather I’ll be trying to get ahead on all the essays due in the last half of semester and get all my English reading more or less done.

The amount of assignments I have after the break is daunting but I’m looking forward to expanding on various ideas and thinking about texts critically.

Saturday, 25 March 2017

For the Love of the Con

To drown my sorrows of not going to Comic Con this year, I thought I’d take a trip down the memory lane of conventions past…

It all started in 2015 with a tumblr gif set announcing Billie Piper (!!) was coming to Adelaide for Comic Con and my discovering it wouldn’t leave me completely broke to go to see her. It was actually during a really stressful period of study, so it was perfect timing for an escape. Amy, James and I waited in line two and a half hours for BP’s autograph, which (at the risk of sounding like a complete fangirl, which really I am) was totally, unquestionably worth it. During the brief signing and lightning fast photo session, she really made you feel like she was happy to be there and she took the time for everyone. It’s such a lovely feeling to meet someone you’re a fan of and have them be so sweet in real life.
We also got to meet and greet the one and only Michael Shanks (aka Daniel Jackson) and listen to various actors talk on panels (Billy Boyd was a highlight). The array of stalls filled with geeky stuff, good food, nice guests and fun panels made the experience one the three of us were super keen to repeat.
And so begun my love of conventions.

The following year, Amy and I cosplayed as Hufflepuff students, as you do, and met Xena, also known as Lucy Lawless. We had a lot of lovely compliments on our cosplay, which delighted and surprised both of us. Karl Urban and John Rhys-Davies were panel highlights.

Then in November (too warm for cosplay), we attended Supanova for the first time. It was much bigger than I expected. While there were aspects that made me feel that Comic Con is the better of the cons, Supanova was a lot of fun.
As big Charmed fans, it was a thrill for Amy and I to see Holly Marie Combs but the highlight of the con was meeting and listening to Nathan Fillion. His panel was one of the best of all the cons and he was just really lovely, one of those people that you feel more of a fan of after meeting than you were before.
And now I’ll go back to counting down the days til Supanova…
Three things we learnt at the first con that we’ve been paying heed to ever since…

1. Don’t give up perfectly good seats hoping to get better, it’s not worth it & could backfire (Let’s not talk about the Billie Piper panel).
2. It is worth spending more on autographs/photos, rather than worrying about having enough for cool fan stuff. The experience is worth more than the items.
3. Getting there an hour before it opens is worth it (especially if you haven’t pre-ordered tokens).

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