December TBR

Last Time I Lied by Riley Sager“Have you ever played two truths and a lie? It was Emma’s first summer away from home. She made friends. She played games. And she learned how to lie. Then three of her new friends went into the woods and never returned… Now, years later, Emma has been asked to go back to the newly re-opened Camp Nightingale. She thinks she’s laying old ghosts to rest but really she’s returning to the scene of a crime. Because Emma’s innocence might be the biggest lie of all…”

Seating Arrangements by Maggie Shipstead“The Van Meters have gathered at their family retreat on the New England island of Waskeke to celebrate the marriage of daughter Daphne to an impeccably appropriate young man. The weekend is full of lobster and champagne, salt air and practiced bonhomie, but long-buried discontent and simmering lust seep through the cracks in the revelry. Winn Van Meter, father-of-the-bride, has spent his life following the rules of the east coast upper crust, but now, just shy of his sixtieth birthday, he must finally confront his failings, his desires, and his own humanity.”

The Dark Lake by Sarah Bailey“A hot summer. A shocking murder. A town of secrets, waiting to explode… A beautiful young teacher has been murdered, her body found in the lake, strewn with red roses. Local policewoman Detective Sergeant Gemma Woodstock pushes to be assigned to the case, concealing the fact that she knew the murdered woman in high school years before. But that’s not all Gemma’s trying to hide. As the investigation digs deeper into the victim’s past, other secrets threaten to come to light, secrets that were supposed to remain buried. The lake holds the key to solving the murder, but it also has the power to drag Gemma down into its dark depths… “

#ReadYourFaceOff TBR – December

The general goal for a #ReadYourFaceOff readathon is to get through as much reading as you can in a 24-hour window of time. It’s a fun (and short) readathon that was created by Riley from RMFickFack. This round will run from 9am on Saturday 1st December to 9am on Sunday 2nd December in your time zone. My focus for this round is to finish off my November book club book, and get started on a Christmas themed nostalgic read for December. Good luck to everyone participating in this round!

November Book Haul

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater“Blue has spent the majority of her sixteen years being told that if she kisses her true love, he will die. When Blue meets Gansey’s spirit on the corpse road she knows there is only one reason why – either he is her true love or she has killed him. Determined to find out the truth, Blue becomes involved with the Raven Boys, four boys from the local private school (lead by Gansey) who are on a quest to discover Glendower – a lost ancient Welsh King who is buried somewhere along the Virginia ley line. Whoever finds him will be granted a supernatural favour. Never before has Blue felt such magic around her. But is Gansey her true love? She can’t imagine a time she would feel like that, and she is adamant not to be the reason for his death. Where will fate lead them?”

Into The Forest by Jean Hegland“A distant war rages overseas. Resources society had depended on, such as gas and electricity, are no longer available. Riots spread through the inner cities, while deadly viral infections spread across the countryside. Isolated in their home in the northern California woods, Eva and Nell live in a world without television or phones, in a time of suspicion and superstition, of anger, hunger, and fear. Perhaps one day the lights–and their dreams–will return, but orphaned by their parents’ deaths and by society, Eva and Nell have been left to forage through the forest, and through their past, for the keys to survival. As they blaze a path into the forest and into the future, they become pioneers and pilgrims–not only creatures of the new world, but the creators of it.”

Last Time I Lied by Riley Sager“Have you ever played two truths and a lie? It was Emma’s first summer away from home. She made friends. She played games. And she learned how to lie. Then three of her new friends went into the woods and never returned… Now, years later, Emma has been asked to go back to the newly re-opened Camp Nightingale. She thinks she’s laying old ghosts to rest but really she’s returning to the scene of a crime. Because Emma’s innocence might be the biggest lie of all…”

Bridge of Clay by Markus Zusak“Here is a story told inside out and back to front. Five Dunbar brothers are living – fighting, loving, grieving – in the perfect chaos of a house without grown-ups. Today, the father who left them has just walked right back in. He has a surprising request: Who will build a bridge with him? It is Clay, a boy tormented by a long-buried secret, who accepts. But why is Clay so broken? And why must he fulfil this extraordinary challenge?”

Watching You by Lisa Jewell“You’re back home after four years working abroad, new husband in tow. You’re keen to find a place of your own. But for now you’re crashing in your big brother’s spare room. That’s when you meet the man next door. He’s the head teacher at the local school. Twice your age. Extraordinarily attractive. You find yourself watching him. All the time. But you never dreamed that your innocent crush might become a deadly obsession. Or that someone is watching you”

The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton“Tonight, Evelyn Hardcastle will be killed… Again. It is meant to be a celebration but it ends in tragedy. As fireworks explode overhead, Evelyn Hardcastle, the young and beautiful daughter of the house, is killed. But Evelyn will not die just once. Until Aiden – one of the guests summoned to Blackheath for the party – can solve her murder, the day will repeat itself, over and over again. Every time ending with the fateful pistol shot. The only way to break this cycle is to identify the killer. But each time the day begins again, Aiden wakes in the body of a different guest. And someone is determined to prevent him ever escaping Blackheath…”

October Empties

Dermalogica Daily Microfoliant – This is a product that I almost always have in my skin care rotation. It is tried and true, and I feel like if I go without it for too long my skin breathes a sigh of relief when I start using it again. If you’re in the market for a gentle exfoliant that works well with sensitive skin, I really can’t recommend this enough.

Ecoya Mini Diffuser in Guava & Lychee Sorbet – I had this diffuser in our second bathroom and it was a really light and refreshing scent, well suited to such an open space. As much as I like these Ecoya diffusers I don’t think I’ll be repurchasing them in the future purely because of how much cat hair the diffusing sticks seem to attract. I have one left in our bedroom, and then I think that will be it for me.

Evo Mane Attention Protein Treatment – I have left it far too long between haircuts, and instead of just going and getting a haircut I apparently have decided to try and mask the problem by using an array of lifesaving hair products. This is a hair mask I always come back to because it does such a great job of injecting some life into my sad looking hair.

Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara – I picked this up at Mecca earlier in the year when my best friend was visiting from Perth. I figured I would give it a go, but I didn’t have high expectations because as everybody knows Lancome Hypnose is the greatest mascara of all time and couldn’t be toppled from my holy grail list. I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised and this is something I will be repurchasing in the future. It did a great job of thickening and lengthening my lashes, and didn’t smudge throughout the day.

Tresemme Salon Finish Freeze Hold Hairspray – After I finished up my last bottle of O&M Queenie I told myself that I had to use up all of the other hairsprays I had in my collection before I was allowed to repurchase it. This was the first bottle I finished, and it did a decent job of keeping a curl in my fine straight hair. I wasn’t able to test how it held up during a full work day because I don’t bother curling my hair when I’m working from home, which I have been doing since March.

Adore Beauty Haul

It was my birthday last week, and as well as placing a small order of books I decided to treat myself to some all-time favourite beauty products that I haven’t purchased in a while.

Here is what I picked up from Adore Beauty

Kerastase Bain Satin 1 Shampoo
Burt’s Bees Almond Milk Beeswax Hand Creme
Terax Crema Original Moisturizing Conditioner
Cosmedix Affirm Antioxidant Firming Serum (Deluxe Sample)
Redken Extreme Length Sealer
O&M Original Queenie Firm Hold Hairspray

My hair is desperately in need of a cut but I have managed to temporarily revive it using my holy grail Kerastase and Terax hair products. Also, O&M Queenie is the BEST hairspray if you have particularly fine hair like me. I tried using the other products I had squirreled in my beauty cupboard but nothing has ever lived up to the holding power of Queenie.