Monthly Archives

October 2016

Books

Scary books to read this Halloween

Autumn is an awesome time to read, and especially with Halloween, it’s the perfect time to read creepy stories. I’ve seen some Halloween books lists pop-up the past couple of days and, although I’m a bit late, I still thought it would be fun to share some of my favourite scary books.

halloween-unnatural-creatureshalloween-neverwherehalloween-graveyardbook

For some reason when I was trying to come up with spooky / scary books for my list Neil Gaiman kept popping up. I’ve read a couple of his books in the last years and he manages to put the right amount of creepiness in a lot of his books. The first book I thought about is a short story collection, composed by Gaiman, called Unnatural Creatures. Not all of the stories in this book are creepy, some are rather whimsical, but they’re all a bit off. Next I started thinking about the really creepy villains in Neverwhere and how strange and unpredictable London Below is, which makes this a scary place to live in. Lastly, with a graveyard as a setting and a killer on the loose, I think The Graveyard Book also makes an excellent addition to this list (although maybe for a younger audience).

Cover of the book The MonstrumologistCover of the book The Monstrumologist - The Curse of the Wendigo

Cover of the book The Monstrumologist - The Isle of BloodCover of the book The Monstrumologist - The Final Decent

If you really want to up you’re game and get more into horror I can recommend The Monstrumologist series by Rick Yancy. If I had found these series as a teen, I would never have slept again. I only read the first two books of the series, The Monstrumologist and The Curse of the Wendigo, but I really got creeped out by these two. Think gothic, dark, gore and creepy. After Curse of the Wendigo, which has a seriously scary monster in it,  I decided to take a break from the series, for my sanity’s sake. Maybe Halloween is the perfect moment to pick up the third book.

Cover image of A Wild Swan

If you’re into dark and twisted fairytales you might want to give Michael Cunningham‘s A Wild Swan a chance. This stunningly designed book is a collection of dark fairy tale retellings. Cunningham writes his short stories in a very distinctive style, which works perfectly for creating dark and ominous settings. The cruelty and optimism in these stories made me think of the Grimm brother stories I read as a child, which I rather appreciated.

A page from the comic book series Locke & Key

If you’re more into graphic novels than books and you want some horror, you should check Locke & Key by Joe Hill. I’ve talked about this series in my Books you should gift post and I still think this is an awesome series. It’s dark, it’s gritty and the illustrations fit the story perfectly. Know that it’s violent and gruesome at some points, but hey, what’s Halloween without a little blood spilling?

Do you have any creepy reads or scary books you can recommend? Any Halloween books that I should definitely check out?

Books

Book review: milk & honey by Rupi Kaur

I was never into poetry. I don’t think I’ve ever ready a poetry collection before this year. Look at me know, I just read my second poetry collection of the year. And I liked it. How can I not? Rupi Kaur’s milk & honey is raw. It’s soothing. And refreshing. It’s feminine and feminist. It’s also a book I’d love to give to friends. Or people with broken hearts.

It’s all BookTuber & author Jen Campbell’s fault I got interested into poetry. Not that it’s a bad thing. I read Ted Hughes’ Crow because of this, which was a five star read. It’s also on Jen’s Booktube channel I first heard about Rupi Kaur’s milk & honey. I can’t recall what she said about it, but the name of the book stuck in my head. It was on my wishlist for a couple of months and when SocialBookCo asked me if I wanted to review a book for them, I quickly picked this one from their list. So, now that we have established that I’m not a poetry buff and that, if you really are into poetry, my opinion isn’t worth much. But if you aren’t into poetry and want to test the waters, this one might be for you.

i’m losing parts of you like i lose eyelashes
unknowingly and everywhere

milk & honey wasn’t what I thought it was going to be. With its 200 pages it was already longer than I thought it was going to be. I didn’t read anything about the book beforehand, so I was pleasantly surprised to discover it’s about love. And about breaking up and piecing yourself back together afterwards. And about feminism. It’s a raw poetry collection, with poems like loose thoughts (don’t expect rhyme). Sometimes they’re soft, sometimes they lash out. Another nice surprise were the illustrations that are scattered through the book.

i don’t know why
i split myself open
for others knowing
sewing myself up
hurts this much
afterward

The collection consists of four parts: the first part is raw & hard, it’s called “the hurting”. It deals with earlier men in the author’s life. The second part, “the loving”, and the third part, “the breaking” read like you’re going through a relationship. While the second part is mostly sweet, the third part is painful. In the fourth part, “the healing” the poet talks about more than just healing your heart, but also about loving yourself. It sometimes felt a bit like reading motivational quotes on Pinterest, but in a less hollowed out way. I could also feel the fierceness and the anger in her poetry (through all four parts), which I really liked.

you deserve to be
completely found
in your surroundings
not lost within them

As I said in the beginning of this post: I really loved reading milk & honey. It was a very pleasant discovery. The content was so strong I won’t wait long before rereading. And if you’re looking for a gift for strong and/or heartbroken women in your life I wouldn’t hesitate giving milk & honey.

Personal

Sunday Scribbles, n°1

Hello & welcome to the first instalment of Sunday Scribbles. To be honest, I started writing this short after I wrote the blog post from last week. I didn’t wait for responses on that post, because I felt excited enough to start writing immediately. #win This week I’m talking about struggling with “the adult lifestyle”, finally having a tablet (and how I believe this will change my life) and a couple of my favourite things from the past week. Settle down, take a cup of coffee (or a beverage of your liking) and read on!

InkTober - day 1

Adulting (not adultery)

This is something everyone goes through, I’m sure, and I should just man up and get over this, but I’m a bit shocked by how difficult I find it to fit everything in, since I started working. I’m a creative person with tons of hobbies. I’m also, at my core, an introvert, who needs “down time” to function like a normal person. But since I started working full-time a couple of months ago I started cutting away hobbies.

I crash in front of my computer (or in the last weeks: on the couch, not caring about what’s on tv), I don’t cook any more (thank my lucky stars for the Boy, who took over graciously). I don’t care what I eat (frozen pizza will do), which is strange because I like cooking and I love making new dishes.

Adulting (v): to do grown up things and hold responsibilities such as, a 9-5 job, a mortgage/rent, a car payment, or anything else that makes one think of grown ups; also: Post adolescence when the light in your eyes fades away and dies. (source: Urban Dictionary)

So yes, I’m struggling a bit here. I’d like to keep up the blog, work on new DIY’s and long interesting blog posts, spend 8 hours in art school every week, do half an hour of sports each day, eat healthy, do my part of the household tasks, cuddle my cats, take pictures for my blog and social media, actually edit the fucking video I made months ago, start filming often, do a 30 day challenge (and finish it for once). I’m not even thinking about the extra blog and side hustle I want to set up. (I’m actually giving myself heart palpitations by thinking about this all and writing this down).

I seriously don’t know how I can make this all work (please send tips & chocolate) and I feel a bit (just a teeny tiny enormous bit) overwhelmed. So I’m coping by coming home, ignoring my pc and take long relaxing baths. Which will have to do for the moment. Head space first, smaller goals and the rest will follow (I hope).

1475336353800

My tablet will change my life

Which is a big claim, but I hope it will, in some small ways. One of the things that bugged me for months, was my lack of reading other blogs. After a full day at work behind the pc, I don’t like to spend the rest of the evening sitting uncomfortably in front of my laptop, reading blogs. I don’t like consuming blogs on my phone (even though I can barely hold it in one hand, it’s too small for reading), so that stopped me from actually following up with my favourite bloggers. The same goes for watching YouTube on the go or whilst taking a bath. I also use my phone for writing down ideas on the go (in Evernote), but I don’t like it for writing longer texts or planning in new blog content.

After months of careful deliberation and getting stressed out because I got overwhelmed by the amount of options you have in tablets, I just picked one and ordered it. Sometimes I do things better when not actually thinking them through. And now I have a Samsung Galaxy Tab 2, which is so much lighter than I thought it would be and which already started changing some of my habits (if I commented on your blog the past week, thank my tablet).

InkTober - day 1

Thing I love this week

  • Among many other drawing challenges and festivals, it’s also InkTober this month. The concept is really simple: every day you make a drawing or a sketch, which has some inking. I got really excited and made a good start yesterday. All the sketches in this post are from my first day of InkTober. I’m a bit in love with the way all the black and white looks in my sketchbook. I decided to keep things really simple and start off by doing only patterns. Hopefully I can finally finish a 30 day challenge this time. 🙂
  •  This illustrated music video directed by Rozalina Burkova for Entrance. The illustrations and the music are a perfect match!
  • I absolutely love watching Anke Weckmann’s Sketchbook Time Lapse videos. The way she builds up her sketchbook pages, seemingly randomly and then going back to earlier sketches and adding details really is fascinating to me.

That’s all for this week! Did you read or watch anything this week you really loved? Let me know in the comments.