Hello from lockdown 6.0. I know – you honestly can’t make this stuff up. We’re going on 200 days [and counting] in hard lockdown. And this time the curfew’s back. Fun times.
Also, now I’m making memes because how else do you cope?
Please send help.
Not two weeks out of lockdown 5.0 and we’re back, living under Australia’s toughest restrictions. Cases are surging as the delta variant continues to grow. At this stage, we’ll be spending Christmas home alone. Just you know, minus all the booby traps and Kevin McCallister.
BUT, refusing to let this lockdown get the better of me, I threw myself into some fun activities to keep up morale and keep myself sane. Here’s what I’ve been up to:
- Binged the entire Disney Fairies movies with my friends [#fairygirlsforever] over Disney+ Group Watch.
- Marathoned the To All the Boy’s I’ve Loved Before movies on Netflix.
- Busted out my old original Xbox and played through the classics – Simpsons Hit and Run, Spyro a Hero’s Tale, Shrek 2 and Madagascar. No, I’m not a gamer. Just bored.
- Revived my Instagram account [again] and took LOADS of photos to schedule.
- Marathoned the Kissing Booth movies on Netflix [sobbed like a baby during the final film #teamnoah].
- Became obsessed with The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo.
- Had a DIY spa day complete with bubbles, a bath, wine and face masks.
- Re-arranged my bookshelf.
- An attempt was made at finishing a 1000 piece Harry Potter puzzle. After an hour I’d only managed to join 7 pieces. 7
FREAKINGPIECES. Ended with me throwing all 1000 pieces across the floor.
- Felt those early spring vibes and spent many crisp days soaking up some vitamin D on the alfresco [mostly with trashy romances and wine.
I promise I’m not an alcoholic].
- Watched Titanic [again] with Champagne and prawns [which is quickly becoming a lockdown tradition].
- Wrote some handwritten letters to my friends.
- Busted out my mum’s French cook books and cooked a rich, creamy potato bake.
- Attended a Zoom Party/Reunion with my OG work crew [is any lockdown complete without an impromptu Zoom Party???]
- Became super obsessed with Podcasts while binging The All Aussie Mystery Hour and The Zest is History. Josie and Mel are HILARIOUS.
- Marathoned a bunch of dystopian/apocalypse movies because at least we’re not trying to survive the end of the world??? #smallvictories
- Watched The Phantom of the Opera
- Peak lockdown: got drunk with my best friend over FaceTime and watched Twilight for the 100000th time. The commentary was CLASSIC [and embarrassingly thirsty].
Fable by Adrienne Young | YA > Fantasy | ★★★½☆ | I had extremely high hopes for this YA pirate adventure. Not only because it was last Octobers YA pick for Reece Witherspoon’s book club but because so many of my friends were talking about it. And while Fable was a lot of fun, I wasn’t blown away. What I will say is that Fable is seriously immersive. The dredging scenes were beautifully executed, full of tension and danger. Buuut, the plot felt a little too simple.
Namesake by Adrienne Young | YA > Fantasy | ★★★☆☆ | If Fable felt simplistic, Namesake was downright boring – everything just felt flat and I really had to push to finish. I just… Didn’t care? Namesake picks up right where Fable leaves off – with our cutthroat protagonist onboard her enemies ship. There’s plenty of new adversaries but not a whole lot of development. That said, I’d still recommend this duology if you’re in the mood for a light, piratey adventure.
The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid | Adult > Historical Fiction | ★★★★★ | THIS IS THE BOOK THAT SAVED MY READING SLUMP AND REMINDED ME OF WHY I STARTED BLOGGING IN THE FIRST PLACE. [Yes – the caps lock is VERY necessary]. Complex, heartbreaking and inspiring, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo centers around the scandalous love affairs of an Old Hollywood legend. It’s a layered, powerfully honest look at the corruption of Hollywood, race, sexuality, misogyny and family.
Rebecca by Daphne dy Maurier | Classic Literature | ★★★½☆ | If the Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo saved my slump, Rebecca threatened to reignite it. I’m still not 100% sure how I feel about this book. Rebecca is atmospheric, haunting and beautifully written but it’s also VERY dense. I loved the idea of the plot and the complex characters but felt the long descriptions were a LOT to trudge through.
Luck of the Titanic by Stacey Lee | YA > Historical Fiction | ★★★★☆ | A refreshingly diverse take on the infamous disaster, Luck of the Titanic explores class, race and family while plunging you headfirst into one of modern history’s deadliest marine disasters. I loved this book but as a self-proclaimed Titanic historian, I wasn’t 100% satisfied. I wanted a little more impact from the conflict and sinking. That said, the climax had me WEEPING [I’m still not okay].
The Host by Stephenie Meyer | Adult > Science Fiction | ★★★★★ | The Host is STILL one of my all time favorite books, holding up re-read after re-read. And given the current circumstances, it’s aged beautifully – the themes just as poignant and relevant as they were 13 years ago. Set on a futuristic Earth, The Host examines how humanity would survive if Earth was invaded by alien life. It’s a haunting story about home, love and humanity.
Small Favors by Erin A. Craig | YA > Horror | ★★★★☆ | The vibes might be immaculate – think parries and cornfields and pine tress – but Small Favors didn’t live up to my high expectations. I’m still not exactly sure what I wanted from Small Favors but I was expected to be blown away. Especially after House of Salt and Sorrows. But Small Favors wasn’t as twisty or scary. That said, the tone is beautiful and I loved the focus on family.
There’s a lot to be excited about for September [even if I had to cancel my trip to Sydney to see Phantom of the Opera at the Opera House – stupid COVID]. Not only do I have a long overdue buddy read coming up but Empire of the Vampire, Jay Kristoff’s long awaited gothic fantasy releases. Watch me re-enter my vampire phase like its 2010 all over again.
Octavia and I plan to kick off the season [my spring her fall] with Gods and Monsters. Considering our mixed feelings on Blood and Honey, we’re equal parts nervous and excited. Plus, reading is ALWAYS better together! I’m also planning to read The Chemist and Empire of the Vampire.
As for everything else? Well considering that both Sydney and Melbourne are battling the delta variant, I can’t see myself getting out of lockdown anytime soon. I guess we’ll just have to take it day-by-day.
Until next time my friends – stay safe