A collection of absolute favourites

Novels

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Peter Pan by J.M Barrie, will always be number one on my list of favourite novels. Peter Pan has a special place in my heart. You can find me quoting this every second of my every day. The idea of growing up is such a timeless idea and ultimately Peter Pan is full of bittersweet moments that pull at your heart because they are so real and upsetting. The characters are so vividly described and developed, with the use of narration which adds a really interesting layer to the story. Everything about what Barrie has to say is thought provoking and so cleverly written. I could talk about Peter Pan for days on end, it is a novel that I can truly not fault. I love every single detail about it. I love the picture the story paints in my head, so vivid and so beautiful. I love the wonder, the imagination, the curiosity. It’s such an insightful read and I reccomend you do read it, think it over, analysize it. It’s really a very rare gem, a classic, that these days are not so common or easy to come across.

Authors

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One of my favourite authors I think that you should give a try is Sarah Dessen. She is a contempory author who I think lately has been dismissed for being too cheesy, having a lack of substance and being highly overrated. However, her books tackle what is most important to everyday teenagers so perfectly and on a completely realistic and heartfelt scale. Most of her stories are not blown up, overexaggerated, and there’s really no big quest for the main protaganist to achieve. They are overall on a really small scale and investigate raw, real problems that many teenagers experience. And honestly, that’s a hard thing to do. I would describe her writing style as quiet contempory with novels that revolve around friendship, family, and growing up…but of course with a little bit of love thrown in the mix. Her books are so quietly wonderful and some of my favourites are; Along for the Ride, Just Listen, The Truth About Forever and Last Chance/Keeping the Moon.

Films

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I can never choose a favourite movie. Whenever someone asks the question my mind is suddenly so full of every single movie I’ve ever watched that it’s impossible to answer. However, my favourite feel-good, rom-coms are We Bought A Zoo, About Time and What If. They give me warmth every single time I watch them. I cry, I laugh, and I pine over having the life they lead. Check them out!

Ones that lately have been on my mind for thinking are Interstellar and Inside Out. Inside Out in my eyes has not one fault. It’s an animated Pixar film about a girl who is moved from her childhood home and it focus’ on the five emotions (Joy, Sadness, Anger, Disgust and Fear), inside her head as the changes unfold. I could go on and on about Inside Out and I highly reccomend it to everyone. It’s such a clever film, and if you want to think about themes while watching then have a think about growing up, and acceptance of emotions. Then there’s Interstellar, a sci-fi film that has caused some major controversy. A lot of people don’t like this film and disregaurded it for pretending to be clever. However, Interstellar, in my opinion, tackles and explores some big unanswered questions. When we go to space, what is the one thing that keeps us sane? It’s love. Love expands through time and distance and ultimately is a quantifiable force. I loved Interstellar, it is beautifully shot, and the scores and main theme make me want to scream with joy it’s that good. Definitely make sure you see this one.

(Psst!!! If you’ve already seen Interstellar then go watch this analysis. It’s really insightful and will get your brain clogs churning. And if you haven’t seen Interstellar yet then what are you waiting for?! Go watch it and come back; Interstellar Analysis )

Music/Artist

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This one is constantly changing for me, but here’s a few recent loves. Recently, Invisible by Hunter Hayes has struck a chord with me. So much so that if it come on shuffle on my phone I will repeat it over and over until I feel I’ve had enough of my daily dose. Hunter Hayes is a country muscician and the way this song starts with the stripped back guitar picking, into the build up at the end gets me everytime. The lyrics are extremely honest and relatable, a reassuring message out to those kids who dare to be different that hey, be brave, be you. My favourite lyric would be; “So your confidence is quiet//To them quiet looks like weakness//But you don’t have to fight it//’Cause you’re strong enough to win without a war” (Also check out his song Tattoo, it has a killer guitar part!!)

I’ve also been loving Gabrielle Aplin’s releases of new songs from her upcoming album. The tracks that i’ve been listening to on repeat include; Sweet Nothing, What Did You Do and Light Up the Dark. It’s a whole different sort of mood and tone this album that she is about to release is shaping up to be sounding. Opposed to her more folk/pop/country previous album English Rain, this one has a heavier rock and jazz influence. Plus her way of capturing words beautifully into song lyrics is still very very present, which I am very happy about. My favourite lyric from Light Up the Dark is: “When the chaos turns to silence and your enemies your friends//I will run away the storm”.

Here, by Alessia Cara. Honestly it’s not the type of music I usually listen to, but having said that, something about this one has stuck with me. It’s basically about being at a party you were dragged to by your friends that is totally not your scene. It’s such a universal theme of being a wallflower and that there is nothing wrong with not wanting to spend time with strangers who don’t care about you, but instead with real friends. Alessia has so much soul, so if you like soul and are into R&B then definitely check out her new EP Four Pink Walls. My favourite lyric is: “And we’ll discuss our big dreams//How we plan to take over the planet//so pardon my manners, I hope you’ll understand//that I’ll be here.”

Last one I swear, Collide, by James Bay. This song has been my quiet little secret for a while now. I am so in love with James Bay because I just think he is a genuienly cool guy, and beyond talented. He is so blues and I love it. This song has a killer, and I mean KILLER riff that sticks in your brain and makes you want to get up and move. Collide is so so good and I so badly need him to release it as a single, to show everyone what he is truly capable of. My favourite lyric is: “Oh you left, a hole in me//I don’t cut, easily//I’m only just holding up, on my knees//I think it’s time to open up, I don’t mean bleed.” (But really my favourite lyric is the whole thing).

This is just a collection of a few favourite things of mine at the moment. I hope it gives you some radical things to either explore or urges you to try something new out. I love stuff like this because it actually it explains to you a little bit about the author, book, movie, or artist which always intrigues me to check out stuff that maybe I’ve never felt the need to explore!! I hope you feel the same.

From Brecon
Stay Gracious x

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