27 Apr 2014

The Kite Runner I Khaled Hosseini

Over the two weeks that I have had off I have literally had my nose stuck in this book for the majority of the time. This will be the third time that I have read The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini but yet when I turned the last page, I wanted to flick back to the start of the book and read it all over again. This is the one book that I will never, ever, ever get bored of!

Set in Afghanistan, this story follows the life of a boy named Amir as he struggles for his father's attention. The first half of the book consists of Amir looking back on his childhood and reflecting on an event that took place one day that would later go on to change his life forever. But years later after moving to America, marrying and forging a successful career as an author, Amir cannot forgot the incident that happen all that time ago. So he over comes his fears and travels to extremes to fix the problems that he had left behind him in the hope that he now might be able to sleep peacefully again at night. But all is not what it seems...

The plot of this book is so thick and surprising. Ever time I read it I am still as shocked as the first time. Just trust me when I say that this book this one of my favorite books for a reason. It is one of the best books that I have had the pleasure of reading in a long time. Hosseini has this long lasting ability to organize and write a plot that can make you smile, laugh and cry all at the same time.

 Every time I read it I am completely sucked into a world of fear and heartache at the hands of the Taliban. You are shown an insight into a whole new culture that you have never experience before and since reading this book I have learnt a lot about the world. Black, white, blue or green everyone deserves a shot at happiness.

So for people who say that books cannot move you to the point where you actually sit and cry when you close the last page, please read get a copy of The Kite Runner and read it. You will thank me in the long run. And I guarantee that it will move even the most coldest of hearts and bring a smile to your face that will not leave for a week


Happy reading,
Love Beth xx

25 Apr 2014

A Girl's Worst Nightmare!

I've always been a fan of Clean & Clear products. So I was really happy the other day to find some rather useful tools on their website that I thought I would share.

Spots are probably one of the most hated things in the whole world. They are sneaky little things that pop up out of nowhere for no good reason, at really bad times, and just look ugly no matter how much you try to hide them. I always get break outs when I have something important planned to do like a friends party or a family reunion. I spend the whole time being so self-concious about them that I don't enjoy myself and would like nothing better than to run all the way home and hide under my duvet in bed. It never gets easier. But what surprises me is the fact that even though we all get them from time to time nobody seems all that keen to discuss it or offer any advice. It seems like a taboo subject theses days.
For that reason, there are a lot of myths surrounding spots like the fact that they are contagious, caused by an unhealthy diet or lack of hygiene. People don't take consider acne as a medical problem or know that you can go to your local doctor who can prescribe you cream and pills to take for it.

I remember getting my first spot around 10 or 11 and completely going into meltdown.  We'd be told at primary school that we would get 'spots' but at the time I didn't even know what a spot looked like, how it was caused or what was the best way to get rid of it. I kind of expected it to be like a cut you get on your arm when you fall over and thought it would scab over or something. But it wasn't like that at all. One day it was there and the next it wasn't. I literally thought somebody had come and peeled it right off my skin, like a plaster, while I slept.

So on the Clean & Clear website I found a page with advice and information on spots which I would happily take and show my 12 year old self if we ever one day worked out how to travelled back in time (along with visiting Shakespeare, Henry VIII, Queen Victoria, the dinosaurs, Jesus, my great-grandparents and a disco in the 80s!).

I also found a 4 question quiz that you can complete anonymously online that will ask you about your skin's condition and at the end recommend some of their products that would best suit you based on answers you gave. It is really helpful as I often find it hard to find products that are 100% perfect for my skin type, but this tool allows me quickly and easily find the perfect one.

I hope this helps and is some comfort to you as you now know that your not the only one suffering. Maybe you even learnt a thing or two. 

Let me know if you visit either of the links that I have given or maybe you have some advice of your own. I'm all ears xx 

17 Apr 2014

At The Movies I Divergent

On Thursday I went to my local Empire Cinema to see the first instalment of the three part sci-fi action film, Divergent. It is based on a novel by Veronica Roth with the same name.

It is set is a futuristic version of  Chicago where society has been split into five different groups as a means of keeping the peace after a brutal war many years ago. At the age of 16 citizens must undergo a test that decides which group they best fit into and at the Choosing Ceremony they must pick, with the test results in mind, which group they wish to join. However, once they join a group they cannot change their mind. If a person is thrown out their group they will be declared Factionless and we will be seen as the lowest of the low in their society; not better than a lump of dirt on a pure white carpet.

The film follows a girl named Tris Prior (Shailene Woodley) whose test results shown that she does not fit into just one of the five groups but several. This is a very rare occurrence and is known as being 'divergent'.  People ,like Tris, who are divergent are seen by many as a threat to their peaceful society and therefore must be terminated. For that reason Tris must keep her true test results a secret and hide her identity within one of groups, hoping that nobody will find out. However within her chosen group she is put through gruelling training exercising that challenge her both physically and mentally. With her guard weakened, people begin to suspect she is different and it is not long before another war breaks out and she has no choice but to protect to people she loves, even if that means revealing her secret to the world!

Normally I will read the book of the film first before I go to see it, but this time I did the opposite. Walking into the dark room of the cinema, I had no idea what to expect from this film apart from the information that I had gained from watching the trailer below:

At first ,while I gorged on popcorn (that I promised myself I wouldn't eat until the film started) during the initial adverts, I wondered if I would become bored by the film as it lasted for over two hours. However I was pleasantly surprised that I was not bored at all, in fact it was the complete opposite! For the majority of the film I was on the edge of my seat, jumping with excitement for what was about to happen next; a jittering ball of nerves with my hand almost permanently glued to my mouth to suppress the gasps of shock as the plot took another unexpected twist; quiet literally feeling the emotions of the characters as they were plunged into the deep end; laughing at the funny bits; crying at the sad bits; crying at the happy bits and towards the end just crying for the heck of it. The talented actors/actresses just added to this with special recognition going to Shaliene Woodley who "played a blinder" (as my family would say) as the lead role. I'm sure the casting for this character will please the novel's original  fan base, which is about to get much bigger believe me! And I must say I was very entertained by the directors attempt to hide Kate Winslet's  (who plays Jeanine, the evil leader of the revolting group who start the new war) baby bump!

Honest, Divergent it is one of the best films that I have had the pleasure of seeing in a long time. A close second to The Hunger Games and Harry Potter films. A must-see 2014 film, but don't forget your popcorn because after all a film without popcorn can hardly be classed as a film can it?

 "What Makes You Different Makes You Dangerous" but I says what's the fun in being predictable,

Love Beth xx

15 Apr 2014

"What A Wonderful World"- Louis Armstrong

All my life I have been shipped around to different opticians who bombard you with glasses the moment you walk through the door.

First you are greeted by the rather over-perky receptionist who flashes you a smile and violently wobbles her head with enough force to shake the thick-rimmed glasses from the end of her nose. "Oh please do take a seat and we will be with you shortly" she tells you while attempting to fix her glasses back on her nose without stabbing herself in the eye for the third time that day.

Then you have to find a seat in the extremely small waiting room. However the only seat left is between two very old and rather...shall we say big women who are currently in the middle of an argument about whose new hair cut is the most "sexiest" and which one is the best "toy boy magnet". Once you are safely settled (or should I say squashed) between them you see that buried within the tangled bird-nest of grey on their heads is their glasses. And at that moment you can't help but wish one of them would turn around and tap you on the arm saying  "Pardon me deary for irrupting but have you seen my glasses? I can't seem to find them anywhere". Oh dear how I would laugh at that!

 And finally when the optician calls your name so quietly you think for a moment you have imagined it until you see the man/women bending over you wearing three pairs of glasses- one on their face, another dangling from a chain around their neck and the third sticking out from their breast pocket. Only in an opticians, you think to yourself.

Then once you have come out of the eye test, adamant that you will not purchase another pair of glasses to add the 500 other pairs that you refuse to wear at home, a women comes over,  pushes you over to the glasses section and starts to hold up different frames beside your face, muttering and smiling to herself. When you leave the shop with one of them stupid plastic bags that rip with the slightly touching containing a pair of "cool" glasses, a spare pair "in case you lose the first", several glasses cases in all different styles because you "just can't decided which one is best" and bottles full of expensive liquid that do everything that water could do but much worse. Then as you walk away you wonder why the lady was smiling and wonder what she was muttering?
She just brainwashed £500 + out of your purse without you even knowing and probably said something like "What a stupid ugly fool" under her breath! THAT'S WHY SHE WAS DAMN WELL SMILING!

So as of yesterday I hold my hands up the brainwashing god and surrender. I will no longer fall into his greedy-glasses-giving-money-taking-hands. This is because I have been saved by another god. He (if he does even exist which I very much doubt he does) has given me the gift of invisible glasses, also known as contact lenses! They are marvellous little things that you just pop in and out of the eyeball whenever you feel like it and nobody suspects a thing. Its my equivalent of the so called dirty little secret!

Now I can actually see things, where before it was all a bit of a colourful foggy blur. The trees no longer look like strange floating blobs of green but giant plants that are made from beautifully rounded diamond shaped leaves that sprout from the branches. Then houses no longer look like blown up cardboard boxes with windows and doors but amazing designs and architecture made from individual bricks that are very slightly different. People in the distance no longer look like skin colour fuzzy trees wearing some kind of materiel to cover their modesty but people....real people with eyes, ears and mouths that I could previously only see when they are a metre from my face. The world is so much brighter and more wonderfully detailed now than before. And the best thing is that people always ask me why I am always smiling and randomly shouting out the writing on signposts but I simply shrug and say "Why aren't you?". 

So just appreciate the fact that what you see when you look out the window is very different from what some people, like me and those who are completely blind, can see. This is a wonderful, beautiful world so please can we just look after it?

Love Beth xx

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