Guess what? Well…if you read the title, you’ll know: I have a channel on YouTube! Technically I’ve been on YouTube forever, but over the course of time, I’ve deleted all my old videos that were fandom montage ones. Now looking at them (I saved them, naturally) makes my eyes hurt because of the low quality. However, I recently decided I wanted to start vlogging so here I go!
Here is my first proper video with my FACE SHOWING. My goodness. I’m showcasing my four favorite books from this winter (although I have many many many more I could’ve shown). It was really scary making this because I suffer from bad stage fright and, for some strange reason, it also seems to apply to videos. Hopefully you’ll be able to enjoy the video, though!
I will continue to do book videos as well as maybe some haul and art videos (next up will most likely be a February book haul). Maybe some day I’ll even advance to tutorials :D If any of you have any video ideas, let me know!
For those of you who experience ASMR (if there are any of you out there), I also have an ASMR channel (which is actually more full of content already).
For those of you who might not know, ASMR (Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response) is a strange (and not much researched phenomenon), which is usually characterized by a tingly sensation on your head, neck, or even arms. It’s a nice feeling that can be induced by whispering, calm voice and movements, and other triggers. It’s like meditation that can be induced with a YouTube video. I got into ASMR about a year ago to help me sleep and I thought it’d be fun to make my own videos. Naturally, those don’t trigger ASMR for me – it’s like trying to tickle yourself. Just doesn’t work. But I enjoy making videos and it’s nice to know they might help others relax and/or sleep.
What kinds of videos do you prefer?
The sorting is back on Pottermore! I was so excited to find out that the sorting function has been reinstated on Pottermore because it was lovely to have your own house in the previous incarnation of the site. Way back when I first sorted myself into a house, I got Hufflepuff as a result….and the same thing happened again! I’ve always related to Slytherin the most, but I guess I have to come to terms with the fact that inside this Slytherin there was always a little Hufflepuff heart beating.
My wand is a lovely rowan wood one with a dragon heartstring core. Neat, huh? Now if only I could choose a pet to take to Hogwarts (or would I have to attend Durmstrang since I live in Northern Europe?)…
Reasons why I’m now all about Hufflepride:
They are loyal and kind…what else could you want from a person?
They can grow up to be kickass aurors like Tonks!
They’re good at herbology (and I could use a greener thumb since I even managed to kill my cactus).
They are hardworking but they don’t brag about it – Cedric, anyone?
They’re common room is next to the kitchens and I adore food…I’d be having a midnight snack every night.
Newt Scamander was a Hufflepuff and from what we know of him so far, he’s a pretty cool cat.
They don’t go dark. I wouldn’t want to share my house with a bunch of dark wizards (and yes, I’m aware I said that I relate to Slytherin most. It was based on ambition and a slight dark side – not being a dark wizard!)
Pottermore also now includes new information about other magical schools besides Hogwarts. I love especially the African one…though they all sound absolutely epic!
I recently went to the Helsinki Book Fair, where I was performing in a panel discussion with my editor-in-chief from the literature magazine I work for, Lukufiilis. The magazine is transitioning from print to online, so we were there to discuss the changes ahead.
I absolutely love the book fair: I go every year and it’s there that I allow myself to go bonkers with my book shopping. There is also usually the Wine, Food and Good Living fair, where you can go get free food samples in between your book browsing.
I ended up buying a few comics I’ve heard really good things about: Saga Volume 1 and Rat Queens Volume 1. Now that I have read both, I can say that I LOVE THEM! The art in both is pretty and realistic-looking, and I’m a fan of anything fantasy-related. Plus, Rat Queens was hilarious and I loved having strong female leads. And Saga was intriguing and exciting. I recommend both of them!
I love stopping by at the food fair also, because they have great selection of food items you wouldn’t normally buy. I often get Christmas presents for relatives from there and maybe some treats for myself, too. This year I had some delicious bruschetta from the Italian food stand.
Today I want to introduce you the books that are on my reading list at the moment. My reading list is always at least a mile long but I chose to showcase the ones that I’m either reading already or about to read as soon as possible.
I love Jane Austen, so this book What Matters in Jane Austen by John Mullan is perfect for me: it has incredibly in-depth analysis of different passages from Austen’s books and all sorts of little tidbits about the history and background of the novels.
The second book I’ve been reading on and off is Sampson’s collection Poems to Learn by Heart. It has a brilliant selection of poems from different decades and centuries, poems that speak to everyone and stand the test of time. The poetry is divided according to themes and, even though I probably won’t learn them all by heart, they are beautiful and definitely worth a read.
On the Road by Jack Kerouac is narrated by Sal Paradise (whose character is based on the writer himself) and the story follows him on the road across America. The book is about the beat generation and freedom – freedom for love, travel, life.
Shakespeare Sonnetsis exactly what it sounds like: the greatest sonnets written by one of the greatest poets who ever lived. It’s a classic that no one can help but love!
Alice Sebold’s Lovely Bones is a haunting tale of a girl who gets killed and is following her killer from the afterlife. The book was made into a movie some years ago by Peter Jackson and I first read the book then by I want to now reread it.
Behind the Sofa, which collects the Doctor Who memories of various celebrities in the hopes of raising money for Alzheimer research, is a charming collection and a light read for the summer or trips to school (which is what I’ve been doing).
During the weekend I stumbled upon an article and ended up doing something I have NEVER done in my entire life: I paid for an app. I saw an article on The Love Book – a book AND also an app that has famous love poems, quotes and other excerpts related to love. Many of the poems are narrated for the app by such talented people as Emma Watson (my idol), Tom Hiddleston (my fangirl crush) and Helena Bonham Carter (one of my favorite actresses). I can’t tell you how many poems I’ve already listened to while drinking coffee and looking at rain beating down the windows. Especially Helena Bonham Carter’s voice is perfect for the audio, she has a way of making the poetry just float straight into the listener’s soul.
The Love Book is an actual book as well if you prefer to be able to turn the leaves. I wanted the app because of the audio option, which can actually be very relaxing; I think I’m going to make a habit out of listening to the poems before going to sleep. At only 3.27$ the app is inexpensive while at the same time offering so much. For example, the selection of poetry ranges from William Blake to John Lennon. You can also favorite excerpts or even make a poem of your own.
You can get more information and download the app HERE!
Jane Austen is one of my favorite authors. Her Emma was first published in 1815 and it still remains as one of the most popular classics of all time. The complex story tells of a young girl who overestimates her skills in matchmaking and causes misunderstandings all over her small community. Sounds eerily like modern high school or college. Emma captivates readers of all ages and it’s easy to find yourself engrossed in the realm of love and passion.
The book is named after its lovely and naive main character Emma who has some serious character flaws but who still finds her way to the readers’ hearts. Emma has a distorted image of her matchmaking skills and she tries to bring happiness to her friends (and even more so to herself) by helping them to find “true love”. Unfortunately Emma is probably the last person who should be trying to bring people together: she has no understanding of the way love works, which she proves by successfully convincing her friend Harriet to turn down a proposal from the man she loves. Instead Emma manipulates Harriet into believing that she has feelings for a local vicar. Of course the vicar in return loves Emma instead of Harriet. The book is entirely constructed of similar mishaps through which the reader can only laugh.
The book features a variety of characters: Mr. Knightley (Emma’s brother in-law) has an important role to play in the story and he’s one of the smartest and insightful people found in the novel. He creates a much needed contrast to Emma’s self-centricity as well as to her father’s naivete and the vicar’s ambition. The impact that the men in Emma’s life have on her views of love is interesting to say the least. The diversity of the characters ensures that the reader will have no room for boredom.
The lovely, traditional village of Highbury in Surrey is the perfect setting for discussing serious subjects like women’s station in life, pursuit of love and marriage, as well as financial security and its role in marriage. Jane Austen had a clearly controversial view of women’s role in society; it’s easy to find the hidden themes between the lines but that doesn’t exclude the pure enjoyment that comes from reading this exhilaratingly funny period drama.
I’d personally recommend this book for anyone looking for something witty and romantic to read over the holidays!