Tuesday, 24 November 2015

What are YOU reading? #294

What are you reading on Monday? is a weekly meme hosted by Sheila at Book Journeys where you post books completed last week and plans for upcoming books. Jump over to her blog and see who else is participating.


Saving Laurel Springs by Lin Stepp
Romance, Contemporary
(A stubborn heroine is reluctant to have help from a childhood sweetheart when strange goings on are happening to her family's holiday business...) 

Reading the Sweet Oak by Jan Stites
Romance, Contemporary
(Family drama, friendship and rallying round to help others is the centre of this story...)


Summertime and Somersaults plus Friendships and Backflips by Jane Lawes
Children's, 9 years +
REREADS - 10E/10E for both
(A sweet tale about friendship as a girl pursues gymnastics with admirable passion. I've finished S&S, not quite finished F&B.)

A Place To Call Home by Carole Matthews
 Romance, Contemporary
(The ending makes me cry every time I listen to it!)

Princess Diaries #2 Princess in the Spotlight by Meg Cabot
Young Adult
REREAD - 10/10E
(Ah Mia, how I love the drama you have to cope with – especially your grandmothers both scheming over your mother's wedding – thankfully I remember how it ends!)


Winx:  Season 7
Magical Girl anime, English and Italian version
(I can't seem to find the last few episodes, which is annoying, but it's a brilliant series and I hope it comes out on DVD next year!)

Music Idol anime, Japanese version
(Seen a new to me ep which took place in space and featured Ichigo, Aoi, and Ran helping Akari saving the world from losing dresses in exchange for boring tracksuits.)

Winx: Season 4
Magical Girl anime, French version
(Roxy encounters the white circle which isn't the most pleasant experience, what with an unseen fairy taking over her body for a while: thankfully Bloom & the rest of the Winx save her!)

Assassin anime, Japanese version
(I've been thinking about this anime for a while, and since I wasn't feeling great I watched the English version which is ok, but really annoyed me for crowd scenes kept the Japanese background voices!)

Assassin anime, Japanese version
(This is from the same maker of Noir, about 2 assassins although it's early on so only 1 is an assassin. It's awesome! Similar in theme to Noir, yet manages to be totally different too!)

Kaleido Star:  Season 1 & 2
Comedy/Drama anime, English version
(I can't praise this gymnastics themed anime enough. I watched it in English as I wasn't feeling well so couldn't cope with subtitles, and minus Ken's voice which annoys me a smidge the dub is very good. There's a lot of self-doubt and personal battles, which make watching Sora grow as a person absolutely wonderful!)

Assassin anime, Japanese version
(I've seen the first episode which is gory but entirely engaging and I'm sad there's only 13 episodes in the series, as Canaan, an assassin with silver hair goes about her business running into old friends who look as though they will feature a lot in the short series.)

Police drama, English version
 (Caught up with episodes 3 & 4 now, there's certainly a lot of action and banter, although wider story arcs are coming into play)

Music Idol anime, French version
(I can count on Kilari to make me smile – she gets so excited about everything, sometimes a bit overenthusiastic but manages to get to grips with whatever her new career as a singer, model, and actress throws at her with her cute cat Nasan...)

Craft, baking and more
Craft wise I can finally reveal the secret projects I've been working on: this tablecloth with cross stitch strawberries....

..and a pair of silk fingerless gloves....both are presents for a family member. They've been great fun to make!

I restarted a pair of baby booties – have nearly completed the first boot!

That's it on the craft side: I have been busy in the kitchen. I made these soft centred almost fudge-like chocolate chip cookies...

...which are very moreish. I'll be making them again...

I made a range of chocolate truffles for the birthday celebration: I've got white chocolate bunnies (non-truffle), milk chocolate stars (non-truffle) both from molds, then mint milk chocolate, milk chocolate, and white chocolate truffles...

I also made some simple but delicious cookies...and Oh and I can't forget this blackberry baked cheesecake ...

It's been a busy and productive week!

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Nayu's News #202 Celebration and catching up!

A random pic which caught my eye!
Morning all! I hope you are having a great weekend. Today I'm out celebrating a birthday (not mine) with my family, so there is lots of cake! 

Taking it easy is good! I know this is a sort of sad picture but I like it ^o^
Tomorrow I'll be recovering from a busy few days (I can safey say now a lot of my secret work was birthday related). 

Which review is next?
Tuesday and Wednesday are planned blogging days: I've a stack of reviews to write up so that's what I'm going to do, to get on top of them again. It's all go in my life!

Saturday, 21 November 2015

Review + Q&A: Yetunde by Segilola Salami (Children's, Folktales, 9/10E)

  August 2015, Amazon Media, 34 pages, Ebook, Review copy

Content: humour

Book summary 
 Yetunde is a series of stories that follows the every day life of 6 month old Yetunde as she's narrated African folktales by her mom Iya Yetunde whilst growing up in London. Iya Yetunde also tries to improve her Yoruba speaking ability, so we see a nice mish mash of Yoruba and English. The folktales are of West African origin.

Nayu's thoughts 
This is an intriguing life journal from a a baby's viewpoint with traditional stories woven in. I liked it because when I was younger I adored Aesop's Fables, even if they are a bit weird, so was interested in learning about African folktales, which are as weird as Aesop's, although I mean that in a positive way. Folktales aren't like fairy tales, the ending isn't necessarily happy, but the story always teaches a lesson; this can be on how to behave to others, which characteristics are positive for society, that kind of lesson. 

The lessons are fun to read about because of the stories behind them, and I enjoyed the folktales within this book. More than that I loved the style of the book. I don't remember ever reading a book quite like it, with the point of view being from the baby in first person, rather than third person. It made me smile ever so much! Yetunde is a lively character who knows what she likes and doesn't like. Her insightful perspective makes the book an addictive read. 

The reason the book didn't get full marks is because there are a few words which didn't sit right with me for young children to hear in a book, even if one case they were accurate ones. Also it woud have been nicer to have more of a translation for the Yoruba sentences - sometimes they were explained smoothly in the story, other times I was a bit unsure what was being said. 

Find out more on Iya's website and her social media channels: 
http://www.segilolasalami.co.uk (under construction)

You can buy Yetunde from any good book retailer can order it or you can find it on Amazon
Suggested read 
If you enjoy folktales and fairytales then I'm sure you'll love this story collection: The Story Collector: The Emperor's Nightingale and Other Feathery Tales by Jane Ray (Children's, 9 years +, 9/10E)

Question and Answer session with Iya

A cute hot chocolate which is relevant to the final question!
Nayu here! In addition to reviewing this fun book, it's been exciting for me to have interviewed Iya about her book. Thank you Iya! 

1) I remember reading fables when I was little and enjoying them. How did you decide which to put in the story, and which to leave out?
 Iya:   I simply started with the first story that popped into my mind that I thought was interesting

2) Yetunde is fun to read and looks at life from a point view which I can’t remember reading before now; it’s a fresh writing style – what made you use the viewpoint of Yetunde rather than talk about her in 3rd person?
I always wondered what a baby thought as they couldn't speak. So I wrote it this way as I felt this is what a baby would say if she could talk

3) I love the cover with the contrast of a real life background and cartoon like characters on the front: what made you choose this cover instead of having it all illustrated with no real life images? 
The cover image reflects one of the stories in the book. I felt it would give the reader an idea of what to expect from the book

4) Will there be more adventures with Yetunde? If yes what can we expect? What are you working on at the moment?
 Definitely, Yetunde is growing up and so is her vocabulary. I am still working on the marketing of this first book

5) Where’s your favourite place to write? Is there anything in particular that you like to eat or drink while you write?
Favourite (or should I say convenient) place to write is in bed in the middle of the night when my little girl is asleep. Most times I take nothing but sometimes I have toast and a hot chocolate drink before I start (Nayu: hot chocolate is the best drink ever!)