Walking in a winter wonderland

Dear reader,

Here in Holland we have the first day of Christmas on December 25th and the second day of Christmas on the 26th. Yes, we celebrate Christmas twice and we love it! No work, no shops, just relaxing, visiting family and food.
As we don’t visit family with Christmas, me and my mum spent Christmas in our pj’s on the couch watching Christmas movies.

But, we didn’t have a white Christmas. As soon as the second day of Christmas was over, it started snowing. So yesterday and today were the third and fourth day of Christmas, this way we still had a white Christmas this year! I love cheating like this.

I love snow. I walked to my work instead of taking the bike. And I loved every second of it. A coworker drove past me and stopped to ask if I wanted a ride, but I declined. It was still snowing and everything was so beautiful. I thought to myself; even if it’s gone in an hour because of the shovel trucks and the salt, I’ve still had my Snow-walk. I even wanted to take pictures, but my phone stopped working because of the cold.

Yesterday afternoon, most of the snow was melting and it started freezing at night, so now everything has turned to ice. The weather today was lovely, so I took out my camera and went for a stroll. It was like walking in a winter wonderland.

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Much love,

Sam

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Luna

Dear reader,

This book is about Regan and Liam. Or Regan and Luna. That kind of depends on what part of the day it is. Liam is transgender, a girl born in the body of a boy. But she only let’s Luna out at night when the parents are asleep. Regan, Luna’s sister is the only one who knows about this secret.

I think it is amazing that there’s a book written about a subject like this. I know some things about it so it’s not all new information, but I’ve never actually met anyone who’s transgender. And so I think it’s good that you can now have a little look inside their lives.

I do kind of dislike Regan, though. She keeps saying she loves Luna and that she will support Liam in everything she does. But on the other hand, she keeps saying that it is ruining her life. She thinks it’s weird that Liam wants to transit. And it makes her a bit two-faced. I really don’t like it. It’s like she’s fine with it, but she doesn’t want anyone else to know about it, because it gives her a bad reputation. Regan is so self-centered that it makes me want to cry. But maybe there’s a logic to it, as her hole life revolves around Luna and Liam…

I wonder what Maxx thought off it.

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The hundred-foot journey

Dear reader,

Maxx chose this month’s book and at first I didn’t like it so much, as the first half was quite boring. But it was just like Life of Pi for me. It get’s better when you pass the halfway-mark. I wonder what Maxx thought of it.. Click her name to check out her reviews too!

This novel is about Hassan Haji, a boy from Mumbai. Cooking is in his blood and that’s what he does best. He travels Europe with his family and ends up in France by accident, literally. Across the street is a two-star restaurant and soon it becomes their enemy. But for how long?

When the two-star neighbor-chef decides to take in Hassan and teach him everything she knows, Hassan’s world changes. He moves to Paris and even opens his own restaurant. But the economy drops and hardly any restaurant survives. Can he do it?

It took me quite a while to read this book. It was very hard to get in to. It wasn’t bad, it was just a tad long and boring. But when you get past the halfway-mark in the book it all becomes better. The story finally starts to live. And then you find out it’s actually a really good book.

Although, this story takes place in France and therefore people speak some French at times. As my Frenche is really bad, there were some things that I couldn’t understand. And a little while ago, I started re-watching the American series Gilmore Girls, I read a lot of this book with Michel‘s voice in my head.

Anyhow, after about 130 pages I quite liked this book and if you don’t mind reading a book that starts of really boring, then go read it. If not, just watch the movie.

PS: Want more reviews? Go check them out on my other blog blookersam.wordpress.com

Mr. Penumbra’s 24-hour bookstore

Dear reader,

I’m late with this review as it’s already October. But who cares? I finished reading this book ages ago, so it’s OK. I already had my review up on my Bookblog. But let’s review!

This book is about Clay who is in desperate need of a job. He searches everywhere but can’t find anything. One day Clay walks past Mr. Penumbra’s 24-hour bookstore. There’s a poster on the window saying ‘Help Wanted’. Clay goes in and runs into Mr. Penumbra himself. He gets the job with a set of rules he must follow. His shift though, is during the night. It starts out boring and what not. But at one point it all kicks off and there’s no way to stop.

First off all, I thought that Mr. Penumbra’s 24-hour bookstore was actually a bookstore that was open for 24-hours and then closed permanently to open up somewhere else again. But boy, was I wrong. The bookstore is actually open for 24-hours a day.

Secondly, I wish all jobs had such low requirements. That way I would’ve found a job already. But enough of that.

I thought this book was very adventurous. And it was a real page-turner. I really could not stop reading. At one point I was so tired that I really needed to stop reading and just go to bed, but I really couldn’t put the book away. The way it is written is so good, you become a part of the story and you forget that you’re actually reading a book. And you forget that the world you’re living in whilst reading, isn’t actually the real world.

And even though the situations at the bookstore aren’t always as great as they should be, this book really makes me want to work at a bookshop myself. And it’s not that I didn’t want that before I read this book, but this story just made it a lot worse!

Needless to say, I really really liked this book. It’s an easy read and a real page-turner.

Read it, love it, cherish it.

What about you, Maxx, did you like it?

Much love,

Sam

Can we skip Autumn, please?

Dear reader,

Some of you may love Autumn. The leaves getting brown, orange and yellow, it’s getting colder so you can wear your jumpers again and what not. But I absolutely despise it. And not because it’s getting colder, I don’t mind cold. In fact, I’d rather be cold than hot, cause I love wearing jumpers.

I hate Autumn because of the spiders. Now, I don’t know where this phobia came from, but it only seems to be getting worse. When I moved to the other side of the country to study Journalism, my mom told me it would be fine and that it would help to lessen my phobia. Oh boy, was she wrong.

No matter how small or big, no matter where they are, no matter if they move or sit still, I will find them. Even without my glasses I see them. It’s like they find me and they know I’m terrified of them, cause they will haunt me down.

And no, saying I’m terrified isn’t me overreacting. I really am scared of them. No matter how big or small, I will call (or shout) for someone to get them away from me. I hate getting my bike out of the shed, because there are so many spiders in there. I always drag my bike out so I don’t have to go inside.

On every corner off the street, they’re there. In every bush there’s a spider and watch out where you’re going, cause you might step into a spider’s web! As if they own the bloody place.

And now everything itches and tickles and that’s what I get when I think of spiders. Ugh! Please tell me I’m not the only one? And don’t start telling me that I don’t have to be afraid because “they can’t hurt you”. I know that, Okay? And I don’t even know why I’m afraid, I just am. But isn’t that always the case with phobias? So if we could just skip Autumn and its creepy insects like spiders and slugs and what now, that would be great, thank you. Let’s just go straight to Winter where they all freeze to death.

Much love,

Sam

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Blooker Sam

Dear reader,

I’m officially done with school. In two weeks I’ll get my diploma and then I’m out of there. Goodbye Friesland! And even though I’m happy to be gone, I will miss some things and people.
But since I’m completely done with everything, no school, no internship, no real job yet, I have a lot of free time on my hands.

Now, don’t worry, dad, I will still do my best to get a job. But I decided to be a real book blogger. So I made a sideblog on which I am going to blog about all the books I read. You can find all this on blookersam.wordpress.com. Might sound weird, but I’ve explained the name on that page. So enjoy!

I won’t neglect this blog, I will still post stuff on here. Smaxx will stay here and also my Song of the Week will be updated every Sunday. So go and have a look and if you like it, follow please!

Much love,

Sam

The Beach by Alex Garland – Smaxx Review

Dear reader,

I have a confession to make. And I’m quite ashamed to tell you all. But it’s something that I really have to get off of my chest.
Okay, here goes nothing.

I did not read the book.

So, that’s that. Now please let me explain. Thanks.
I started reading it and on August 22nd I was still only on page 57. I tried reading it, I just couldn’t do it. And it wasn’t the story, cause that was actually not that bad. It was just that it didn’t really tickle me. Is that the right way to put this?

But to be fair, I did download the movie. I watched it, so I could write this review and really tell you all what I thought of it. Now, I know it’s not the same, that became clear to me right at the beginning. But still, I guess the plot is the same and everything.

It’s about a guy named Richard and he’s traveling all by himself. He stays at some sort of hostel where he meets this guy Daffy. Daffy is a bit weird, starts talking about this beach which is really some sort of paradise and then they go to sleep. Alone, that is. Sorry if that sounded different.
The next day, Richard finds a note on his door. Only, it’s not a letter, it’s a map. Richard and his French hotel-neighbors go on a trip to find this island and then it gets weird.

Now, I don’t know if it gets weird too in the book. But I really don’t know what to think of this all. So I think it is safe to say that this is my least favorite entry of our Smaxx adventure. Sorry, Maxx. I really tried, but it just didn’t work for me. I promise that I don’t do this very often. I normally finish books, but there are just a few that I can’t get into.

Sorry that this ‘review’ wasn’t really a review. But when I say it gets weird, it really did. If you get curious, just go watch the movie and see it for yourself. Richard is played by Leonardo Dicaprio, so you might want to check it out anyway. He’s really good!

So, let’s hope other books will be more suited for me. See you next month!

Much love,

Sam

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