Style By Lauren Conrad

Style By Lauren Conrad
Published 5 Oct 2010 by HarperCollins


Summary: You’ve seen Lauren Conrad on TV and red carpets, looking fabulous whether she’s going casual for a day with friends or dressed for a night out. Now Lauren reveals how you can adapt her classic, understated style for yourself.

In her first-ever style guide, Lauren offers tips on how to create your own unique look, shares her favorite sources of inspiration, and identifies the absolute must-haves for any fashionista’s wardrobe. Along the way, she examines her fashion evolution, from California-casual teen to camera-ready style icon and clothing designer.

From beauty advice and hair secrets to how to shop vintage or find the perfect T-shirt, Lauren Conrad Style unlocks the mysteries of being effortlessly chic. With Lauren’s guidance, you’ll look and feel stylish every day.

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I find it so hard to properly review Style by Lauren Conrad mainly because self help books are so subjective that its really hard to review this book without completely leaning to one side.

I think Style is a hit or miss, depending on who is reading it — and for me, it is a miss. I have loved Lauren Conrad since her Laguna Beach days and I know she went to fashion school and is very successful so I picked up Style hoping to learn more than I already know. I’m in no way an expert on the topic of fashion and style but a lot of what’s taught in the book is stuff I already know or what I assume is “common knowledge” — for things such as the little black dress (because it seems like every fashion magazine, blogs, etc talk about the LBD). In a way, I didn’t feel like I learnt much from her book because of prior knowledge. But again — this book would be good for someone who is looking to revamp their wardrobe or their look or possibly those of a younger age group than me.

Owing to personal circumstances, there’s not a lot in her book that I can follow. This is of course different for individuals, but for me, personally, there isn’t much I can adopt. I can tweak it a little bit but there’s only so much I can do.

Style covers 3 main topics: fashion, beauty and lifestyle. This goes from essential clothing items, how to shop, makeup and hair and dressing for different occasions. I did particularly like the jeans section, mixing prints, how to dress for your figure and the make up section but that’s about all that I liked.

I don’t think it’s necessary for me to have this book — I think for me, I’m better off sitting in the library copying down the little pointers I want mainly because not everything is applicable to me. I don’t know if there is a specific targeted audience, but I feel like it would be better for teens looking to build their wardrobe. But again, there’s so many beauty and fashion gurus and books out there that can help you, so my suggestion is to really flip through the book to see if its going to be useful for you, before you buy it.

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The Good Girl By Mary Kubica

The Good Girl By Mary Kubica
Published 29 July 2014 By Harlequin MIRA


Summary: One night, Mia Dennett enters a bar to meet her on-again, off-again boyfriend, but when he doesn’t show up, she leaves with an enigmatic stranger.

At first Colin Thatcher seems like a safe one-night stand, but following Colin home will turn out to be the worst mistake of Mia’s life.


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Holy effin’ crap.

I read The Good Girl a while back and this book still haunts me. Part of me is slightly disappointed with the ending, but a large majority of me loves this book. I don’t tend to read hyped books, but I took a plunge because the premise sounded really awesome. And it is.

The Good Girl, for the most part doesn’t disappoint. It’s about a girl who goes missing and when she returns she isn’t herself and has lost parts of her memory. In fact, she goes by a whole other name and a completely new persona. The book is told in three different POVs: her mom, Mia/Chloe and Colin (her kidnapper). I really enjoyed the different POVs. It really gave you a full, detailed story from everyone’s perspective which really added to the story. Same events, different thoughts. I think the POV gave room for not only more information but also dug into their character individually. You could see how things changed for them and how their character developed overtime.

In terms of POVs, I think The Good Girl has executed it well. I particularly enjoyed Mia’s POV and her transition into becoming Chloe and Colin’s perspective, mainly because it’s different and interesting to look at things in the eyes of a kidnapper. Mia’s mom mainly delves around what she hasn’t done for Mia and has a story arc of her own with the detective and their search for Mia. It was interesting, but it wasn’t as interesting as following the “main” story itself. I felt that because her mom’s POV is somewhat delayed and also revolves around post-kidnapping, it wasn’t as impactful as what happened during.

My issue with The Good Girl is perhaps the ending. It felt a little flat to me, and after all that happened and the action and drama, the ending almost fizzled out. It was unexpected (for me at least) but I kind of wish something else would have happened. But I think because of the ending, it propelled Mia to become more and more isolated. I think psychologically, Mia feels attached to Colin and the ending just broke her.

One other issue is that I felt that sometimes Mia’s mom’s “sense” that so and so happened to her daughter in a dream or something was really over the chart. I understand that it’s a real thing and does happen, but at the time I read it, it felt so forced like it was input into the story just so the detective can actually DO SOMETHING.

Overall, The Good Girl was worth the hype. It was engaging, interesting and I flew threw the book. Even after I was done I kept thinking about it and I wanted to read it again. Definitely a book to recommend everyone especially if you darker/crime/thriller books. I am shocked that this is a debut novel because it is FANTASTIC. Highly recommended!

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Look Where We Live! By Scot Ritchie

Look Where We Live! By Scot Ritchie
Published 1 April 2015 By Kids Can Press

Disclaimer: I received a review copy c/o the publisher via Netgalley.


Summary: This fun and informational picture book follows five friends as they explore their community during a street fair. The children find adventure close to home while learning about the businesses, public spaces and people in their neighborhood. Young readers will be inspired to re-create the fun-filled day in their own communities.

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Look Where We Live is interactive, fun and refreshing.

Look Where We Live discusses about our local community and regardless of where you live in the world, this is certainly something that most people can relate to. There are different aspects that this book takes you through, such as different occupations, different locations and so on.

Look Where We Live really allowed both my younger sister and I to integrate ourselves into the community and really allowed us to have a discussion about our own local community and what we see on a day to day basis. Books like Look Where We Live are important, and its great for daily discussions and reflections. It helps us to really see our community as it is, and how different people, big or small can really play their part in the community.

This book is great for character building as well. I believe there was a page that discusses cutting queues, which is something I’m sure most of us dislike but have to put up with. Again, Look Where We Live is really a simple book about the surrounding community, but there is a lot more to the book than meets the eye.

I particularly love books that are interactive and can set discussions going. To me, those are the elements that I am looking for when reading books to my younger sister and the kind of books that I want to bring into my classroom.

Overall, a wonderful read. Recommended for young children, but could certainly see the worth in bringing such a simple book into a middle grade class or to be read to slightly older kids.

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Max the Brave By Ed Vere

Max the Brave By Ed Vere
Published 5 June 2014 By Puffin Books

Disclaimer: I received a review copy c/o the publisher via Netgalley.


Summary: Are You My Mother? meets I Want My Hat Back in this hilarious picture book featuring your new favorite kitty

Max is a fearless kitten. Max is a brave kitten. Max is a kitten who chases mice. There’s only one problem—Max doesn’t know what a mouse looks like! With a little bit of bad advice, Max finds himself facing a much bigger challenge. Maybe Max doesn’t have to be Max the Brave all the time…

Join this adventurous black cat as he very politely asks a variety of animals for help in finding a mouse. Young readers will delight in Max’s mistakes, while adults will love the subtle, tongue-in-cheek humor of this new children’s classic.

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I loved Max the Brave.

I’m always on the lookout for children’s books for my younger sister and trying to get her to be more interested in books. Max the Brave was perfect.

In some ways, Max the Brave was very interactive. Max is a cat who is trying to be more brave and catch a mouse — the thing is, he doesn’t know what a mouse looks like. So off we go following Max and his journey to look for a mouse. He travels, meeting an array of different animals, big and small, in his hunt to catch a mouse.

Max is always asking: are you a mouse? Which really gets the interactive part going. My sister is consistently responding to the book, yelling out answers — which is when I know a book is great for kids and for use in class. It also gets a discussion going: is Max brave?

The story that Max the Brave tells is so simple. Yet, it is so interactive and enabled me to have a lovely discussion with my sister about bravery and animals. I love it so much that I’m considering borrowing a copy from my local library to bring it into my classroom for my students to enjoy.

Definitely recommend Max the Brave for the younger ones — and would definitely be great in the classroom!

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