All tagged UK

Stream-It Saturday: Now Is Good

It's always interesting to find a surprise book-to-movie adaptation. Damn studios and their name-changing ways. I added British flick Now Is Good to my Netflix queue after watching How I Live Now, because I was looking for more YA-ish movies from the UK. I thought that film took some risks you would be unlikely to see in American films.

When I finally got around to streaming Now Is Good, the story and characters' names seemed immediately familiar. A quick Google told me that I wasn't nuts, that Now Is Good is an adaptation of a book I'd forgotten I'd read, Before I Die by Jenny Downham. (I didn't forget I'd read it because it wasn't good, because it was. Rather, it was a long time ago.)

Recommendation Tuesday: You Had Me at Hello by Mhairi McFarlane

(No, Recommendation Tuesday isn't an actual thing, but I wanted to highlight this book without writing a formal review/think piece/whatever, so I'm running with it.)

Do nothing, and nothing happens. Life is about decisions. You either make them or they’re made for you, but you can’t avoid them.

The first book I read this year was one I downloaded from Edelweiss on a whim because none of the 500+ books on my Kindle, nor any of the books falling out of my overflowing bookshelves seemed like they'd fit what I was in the mood to read. 

I hate winter with a passion, and wanted something light but not shallow to pick me up--and believe it or not, that sort of thing is tough to find. Fortunately, I was lucky enough (after trying some straight-up terrible ones--I'm looking at you, On the Rocks) to stumble upon Scottish author Mhairi McFarlane's You Had Me at Hello, which was extremely popular upon its release in the U.K.

At its core, You Had Me at Hello is a story about friendship. 

University's like this little world, a bubble of time separate from everything before and everything after.

Rachel and Ben met their first day at college and instantly became an inseparable duo. We see their friendship grow throughout college through a series of scattered flashbacks from present day, which finds Rachel and Ben separated for several years. 

Review: Unsticky by Sarra Manning

“We're broken. It's like we have all these jagged edges that scare other people off, but when we're with each other, our jagged edges fit together and we're almost whole.”

On paper, Sarra Manning's Unsticky has all the trappings of a novel I should hate: a wealthy man; a desperate, naive young women and an outlandish scenario throwing the two together. 

And yet, it came highly recommended by Angie, whose taste is excellent and is very similar to my own. (also excellent) taste. And where other books with similar plots enrage me, Unsticky enthralled me. I lost sleep and fought through weary eyes to get through this captivating 550-page novel.

Grace is a recent almost-grad (there was an incident at her senior show that prevented her from actually graduating from college) who partied too hard, hooked up with too many losers, is drowning in debt and working in a dead end job at a fashion assistant at a magazine where she seems destined to never get her shot.

At one of her lowest moments, Grace meets Vaughn, an older--extremely wealthy art dealer--who has an intriguing, and disturbing proposition for her: in exchange for thousands per month, she'll be at his beck and call, host his parties, and be his arm candy whenever she's needed. Desperate for cash and in need of something--anything--different in her life, Grace signs a six-month agreement and she's quickly drawn into Vaughn's world of privilege and society.

Sound familiar

Actually, Unsticky isn't what you think.