January Wrap-up: Books I’ve Read

I’ve never done anything like this before, so bear with me. In my Goodreads “2017 Reading Challenge” I put 30 books. I was being optimistic because last year I barely managed to get 20 done.

Since joining the website and subscribing to a few people on YouTube, I’ve been trying to get back into reading, because when I was little I used to LOVE reading. I read everything I could get my hands on, but ever since I started (and also finished) high school I never felt like it.

If you look through my blog, you can clearly see that one of my passions is television, but I want to get back to the written words.

In the month of January, I managed to read 3 books. And I’m pretty happy with that.

  • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling29069989

Even though I’m a huuuuuuge Harry Potter fan, I didn’t read the book straight away. I had heard some opinion (mainly disappointed reviews) and I didn’t want it to ruin everything. I gave it 3/5 stars, just because it was Harry Potter. But frankly, it felt like reading a badly written FanFiction. I think it doesn’t have the same depth and the same brilliance of the other 7. BUT, it was a screenplay. There are no descriptions, no context… Had I seen the play in London, I probably would have liked it more.

Just like I do when a TV series has an ending I don’t like, I’ll pretend this book doesn’t exist.

Sorry J.K. Still love you. ❤ ❤ ❤

  • 2928531Animal Farm by George Orwell

This book was recommended to me by the boy I’m tutoring and I really liked it! It’s about a group of animal that live on a farm and their decision to overthrow the owner and become independent.

It’s about dictatorships, democracy and rebellion… but the main characters are animals. It’s definitely something weird, but the metaphor is powerful. By the end of the book, you realize how easy it is to shift from one oppressive regime to another.

It’s not very long, it has a hundred pages but it’s an absolute must.

  • Scrappy Little Nobody by Anna Kendrick 29868610

I love Anna Kendrick. I have seen a good amount of the movies she has made, so I was really interested in her book. It’s my third “celebrity/actor-book” (Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari and Yes, Please by Amy Poehler) and I was surprised! As I wrote in my review, there are a lot of stories about her starting out as a child-actor and cool behind-the-scenes anecdotes. That was what I loved the most about it. Seeing what is it like to be a movie star, dealing with fashion and award shows.

If you’re interested in these kind of things, and you like Anna Kendrick, definitely a book I’d recommend!


Hope you liked this post! I’m also more than half way through “The Shining” by Stephen King, but it’s so long and difficult to read. At least for me.

Let me know if you have any recommendations for me!

Georgia   🙂

 

Beauty Haul January 2017

 

At the beginning of the month, I went on a shopping spree with my family. We went to this amazing outdoor shopping centre where you can buy high-end brands for really cheap prices.

And they have a great “Pupa Milano” shop… And I went a bit overboard. Recently I have bought more makeup than I should have. I splurged on items I know I don’t need… but I really wanted them!

I have been tutoring a couple of people to help them improve their english in the last months and I have accumulated a good amount of money. So… WHY NOT?!

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I bought three liners. Did I need three new liners? No. Of course I didn’t. Did I really really want them? No. Were they particularly cheap? Yes. Did I think that someday I might have wanted them? Yes. And so I bought them!

What a liberating feeling!

And after seeing those prices, I really couldn’t hold back. Stupidly, I threw away the receipt, so the price is approximate.

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  • Pupa’s Biphasic Make Up Remover

This is my only “boring” purchase. Last time we went shopping I bought the 50ml size. Since it seems to work very well, I got the 250ml one. And it’s lilac! It’s adorable! This was about 7€. (6£ – 6.40$)

  • Bottega Verde’s KARITÈ hand cream

I didn’t actually buy this, but my friend gave it to me as a Christmas present and I just wanted to mention it because the smell is amazing! I’m not a huge fan of moisturizer and creams, but this is very good. It smells like coconut and I just love it. Question for those of you who are more informed than me: Can I use a hand cream on my face? I mean, the purpose is the same… Please let me know!

  • L’OREAL “Infallible Primer”

They recently opened another make up show, with L’Oreal and Maybelline. I tried to find something, but there were so many people, that it was impossible for me to even look at some problems. Super annoying. The only thing I purchased was this primers. Mainly because I never tried one and it was cheaper than in normal shops. I haven’t tried it yet, because I have some samples left.

Now, unto the colourful items!

  • Pupa’s City Safari Cream Eyeshadow in 002

Saw it. Fell in love with it. Bought it. Don’t regret anything. I remembered this look that Lisa Eldridge did on Cara Delevingne a few months ago and since then, I REALLY wanted to recreate it!

The consistency is creamy and it lasts well. It’s not extremely pigmented, but I think it works perfectly as a base.

  • Pupa’s Cream Eyeshadow in VAMP! in 002

Just like the light blue one, I had a makeup look in my head. It’s kind of similar to the Cara Delevingne one. It has the same pop of gold in the inner corner. LOVE LOVE LOVE. Both aren’t subtle looks, but whenever I feel like playing with colours, I’d definitely try to pull off at least one of them.

The colour is a very nice purple with some glitter and blue particles. It’s not that pigmented but for 2€… A bargain.

  • Pupa’s “Viva Carioca” collection long-lasting eyeliner in 002-003-004

    I’ve been drawing a thin line of colourful eyeliner after my black one and I love it. When I don’t have time for eyeshadow or I just want a pop of colour, it’s my go-to look. My eyeshadow creases easily, no matter how strong my primer is, but this liner doesn’t. My favourite is the green one, but for 0.90cents per item, I didn’t even think twice.

  • Pupa’s Professional Eyeliner VAMP! in 301

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    Pupa’s Professional Eyeliner VAMP! in 301

I don’t even know how to wear this. It’s electric blue, pretty pigmented, but with this one I had no look in mind. I have bought a couple of blue eyeshadows to try to experiment with different colours, but I still haven’t found something that I like. Blue has been coming back into the fashion scene, but I don’t think I can pull it off! It’s frustrating! Let me know if you have suggestions, please! I’m desperate! Also, this was 1€.

  • Pupa’s Diamond Eyeliner in 001
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Pupa’s Diamond Eyeliner in 001

When I started wearing make up, I only wore matte shades. In the past couple of years, I have been really getting into glitter and the only thing I was missing was the glitter eyeliner. I’m not really impressed with this. There’s nt much glitter and it is hardly an eyeliner. I think I’ll be using it on top of another one. It was 3.40€. (2.95£ – 3.60$)

 

  • Pupa’s “Diva Rouge” lipstick in 10

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    Pupa’s Diva Rouge in 10

I’ve been looking for a nude matte lipstick that doesn’t make me look dead for a couple of months. This comes pretty close to what I had in mind. I have pigmented lips already and when I put a nude lipstick on, it looks like I’m a zombie from “The Walking Dead”. Anyway, this colour is amazing…. It’s a brown-y pink colour that is almost the colour of my lips but better. I haven’t worn it for long periods of time, but it’s creamy and not at all drying. This was 6.90€. (6£ – 7.30$.)


That’s all! Wow, this post has taken me a LONG time to finish. I’m exhausted.

I hope you liked it and please help me pull of the blue eyeliner and let me know what’s the difference between a hand cream and a face cream, because for the love of God, I can’t figure it out.

Have a nice week!

Georgia   🙂

 

Homeland season 6 episod 1 Review

(Spoiler Alert for Season 5 obviously, and of course the new season)

I have been waiting a YEAR for this.What’s going to happen to Quinn? Dd Carrie pull the plug? Is he still alive? Is Carrie going back to the CIA? And what about Saul and that devious Dar Adal? Last season left me sobbing for at least 20 minutes. It wasn’t Homeland’s best one. It really wasn’t.

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Season 1 Poster

BUT this new episodes reminds me a lot about season 4. Which I LOVED. The second part of the season was written, directed and acted like something I have never seen before.

As soon as I discovered “Homeland” in January 2013 (just after the ending of season 2), the show has taken the stop in my Top 10. And this new episode reminded me of why I love Homeland so much.

Some general information about this new season

  • it’s set in New York City. After two years in which it was set in Islamabad and Berlin, it finally goes back to America.
  • it’s November in this election year and a new president has been elected: a woman.
  • Carrie is working for an association that helps wrongly accused muslin get a fair trial.
  • Saul and Dar Adal are trying to brief the new president-elect on CIA matters.

After the first three seasons on Brody, Carrie and terrorism in American, “Homeland” pivoted to foreign countries. This allowed the writers to talk about people’s different perspective and they focused everything on american foreign policy. Season 4 gave us an insight into an american embassy in a country like Pakistan. We had the terrorist’s point of view, a dialogue with Saul and Haqqani and strong criticism toward drone strikes. At least this is how I saw it.

On the other hand, Season 5 was all about terrorist groups in european countries: muslin people who wer born in Germany that convert to ISIS’s movement. And of course problems of espionage (*cough* russia *cough*) with the CIA.

These both seasons are extremely real. The scary thing about season 5 is that it’s a possible outcome. It could happen. And a version of it, did. And it’s horrific.

But let’s get into season 6.

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From this first episode, I’m absolutely intrigued. Quinn is back on USA soil and he is as broken as he is ever been. After the stabbing, drowning, coma, stroke and probably something else of the last season, he is in a veteran hospital trying to get better. He is under Carrie’s constant scrutiny and going out of his mind.

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Claire Danes as Carrie Mathison and Rupert Friend as Peter Quinn

Carrie is living in a nice apartment with Frannie, working to help wrongly accused muslim men. She has distanced herself from the CIA and seems like she has everything in order (meaning: she is taking her pills).

I was really excited when a couple of months ago they announced the timeframe of the episodes: right after the Presidential Election. I haven’t experience it before because I was 12 when President Obama was elected and I’m excited to see what happens in real life and what they portray on Homeland.

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J. Mallory McCree as Sekou Bah

This season is all about internal policy and about Carrie building a sort of relationship between Americans and the muslin community. At least this is the vibe I get from episode 1.

I am definitely intrigued by this episode. I wasn’t a huge fan of season 5 and I SURE HOPE, (are you listening Showtime, Alex Gansa and Howard Gordon!?!), that they tried to top season 4 because that was visually stunning. It was beautifully directed.

I know this isn’t a true review of the new episode, but I don’t want to give too much away and after just an episode, I don’t have a well-formed opinion.

Hope you liked it anyway.

Georgia    🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story

I didn’t want to give into the hype of the show. I really didn’t. Mainly because I had no knowledge of the trial and the murder case.

If like me, you weren’t born yet or you simply aren’t familiar with it, this is what happened: in 1994 football player O.J. Simpson was accused of the murder of his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ronald Lyle Goldman. The case shook America, they called it “The Trial of the Century”.

There are a lot of topics that go beyond the trial itself: sexism, racism, the celebrity status (that were fundamental in shaping the final outcome of the case) and the Kardashians.

Yes, the same Kardashian we are painfully subjected to every time we open a magazine or social medias like twitter, instagram or snapchat.

I went in knowing nothing, except of the many prices the shows has won and the great actors who are part of it.

Speaking of actors, the cast is great. Cuba Gooding Jr plays OJ, “American Horror Story”‘s Sarah Paulson is Marcia Clark,, John Travolta, David Schwimmer as Robert Kardashian, the brilliant and adorable Sterling K. Brown, Courtney B. Vance as OJ’s the defense attorney Johnnie Cochran and Kenneth Choi as Judge Lance Ito.

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Some of the cast

To tell the truth, I’m not sure if wasn’t impressed with Cuba Gooding Jr’s performance, or maybe I simply don’t like OJ’s personality and well, everything. I thought it was over the top, a bit forced.

On the other hand Sarah Paulson completely blew my mind. I’ve never watched “American Horror Story” so I didn’t know much about her. But here she was amazing. And shout out to my favourite man on the show: Sterling K Brown. He is just so talented! Every time he acts he makes you exactly feel the character’s emotions. He is truly spectacular.

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Sarah Paulson and Sterling K Brown ❤

We see the America of 20 years ago, an America that was divided and spread further apart by this murder case.

I was reading an article on the nytimes.com website that dates back to the 8th October 1995, two days after the verdict was announced.

Isabel Wilkerson who wrote the article quotes a professor of women’s studies at Wellesley College and she says:

“This is a story about race and gender and how they intersect. It’s about a black man married to a white woman being judged by black women.”

Wilkerson also writes: “White women tended to identify with Mrs. Simpson as an abuse victim. Black women, pulled by competing loyalties, tended to see Mr. Simpson as a black man framed by the system — even if he had been indifferent to the black community, and even if they thought he might be guilty”

There was also the issue of having a black man (Christopher Darden) as a prosecutor on the case, when almost the entire community was convinced Simpson’s arrest was all about the police’s fury against black men and women. Then the detective Mark Fuhrman, who found the two bodies, was accused of racism and this only reinforced the boundaries.

BUT, the trial wasn’t just about racism. It obviously played a BIG role, but another horrible issue was persistent: sexism.

Towards women in general and towards Marcia Clark, the lead prosecutor. Since the case became a media sensation, Miss Clark was criticized by the media and the “Dream Team” (Mr Simpson’s legal defence team), she was judged on her clothes, her hair and also on her capability of raising her children (At the time she was battling her ex husband for custody of her two boys).

“The verdict exposed a chasm in place for generations, often breaking open when black women feel pressed to choose between the men with whom they share race, and all that goes with it, and the white women with whom they share the experience of sexism. While to many black women sexism pales in the face of racism, white women, unburdened by race in a predominantly white society, are freer to focus on sexism.”, wrote Wilkerson.

As I’m writing this,  I am halfway through the series and my opinion has definitely shifted.

In the first couple of episodes, I had the feeling it was a bit “soapy” and definitely too much focused on the Kardashians. I mean, they had more screen time than O.J.’s children! Come on! And we also had an Alanis Morrisette’s “ironic” moment: when David Schwimmer’s Robert Kardashian says to Kim, Khloe, Kourtney and Rob:

“We are Kardashians and in this family, being a good person and a loyal friend is more important than being famous. Fame is fleeting, it’s hollow. It means nothing at all without a virtuous heart.”

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ARE YOU SERIOUS, WRITERS? I know that the goal of the show is to humanize both sides of the case, but this was ridiculous.

I LITERALLY laughed out loud for at least 10 minutes.

But as the show progressed, it got really good. I’m hooked and with only 4 episodes left, it’s all I’ll be watching this afternoon.

I hope you enjoyed this different review… Let me know if you liked it better.

Have a nice Sunday!

Georgia 🙂