Sunday, 15 March 2015

Just Because You're A YouTuber

One thing that really bugs me in this life (and many things bug me) is the way YouTubers are treated, and how they treat us. I only became really interested in YouTube early last year, when I discovered there was such thing as people who vlogged about books - "Booktubers". Before then I had avoided YouTube because of the typical, tedious, repetitive vloggers who constantly do tag videos and silly activities -  I don't want to waste my life watching stuff like that.

The thing that bothers me the most is the way that YouTubers just get things because of the fact that they have hundreds of thousands of subcribers. My main arguement here is the fact that YouTubers are getting book deals. The reason that they are getting book deals is purely because of the fact that they have a huge following behind them, never mind whether they can string a good sentence together. The books may very well be absolutely terrible, but they still get published so that the Youtuber and the publisher can make some money out of the naive people who pick up copies. 

Alfie Deyes is a perfect example of this. The Pointless Book, is not something worth buying - it's AN ACTIVITY BOOK, which basically copies things like Wreck This Journal. It is probably a pointless  waste of paper (no pun intended on the pointless) but because people love watching him do STUPID tag videos and basically filming videos on stuff that isn't worth filming he gets a book deal. Those who are then easily influenced spend money on "books" like these that are really just for marketing purposes.

Another example is Zoella. I don't think that Zoe Sugg is a good role model. No, she hasn't done anything horrific for me to make this statement, but all she does is make videos on make up and beauty and tag videos with popular YouTubers and her boyfriend, who is coincidentally Alfie Deyes. Yes, she did a video on anxiety but that is one video that is amongst a chain of repetitiveness. That to me, is not someone who we should all look up to. Just because she can do her make up, and she has 5 million + subscribers, it does not mean that she deserves to have a book published, it does not mean that she deserves all the fame that she gets.

There are many, many authors who are probably writing their book right this second, but cannot get a book deal, and they may very well deserve it, and yet awful books get published just because their author has some fame. Shouldn't we regard role models as people who have done amazing things with their lives, not people who just post videos on the internet?

It's just something to think about.

Holly x

Sunday, 8 March 2015

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

Code Name Verity (Code Name Verity, #1)
I have two weeks. You'll shoot me at the end no matter what I do. 11th October 1943: A British spy plane crashes in Nazi-occupied France. Its pilot and passenger are best friends. One of the girls has a shot at survival. The other has lost the game before it's barely begun.

Thank you to Electric Monkey for sending this to me in exchange for an honest review.

Please do not think that the rating given to this book from me is bad, because in spite of what I'm about to say I really think you should read this book.

Code Name Verity is about Verity, a British Spy captured by the Nazi's, she is writing a confession of what she does and how she got to this point.

Unlike so many others, I didn't love this book, but I did like it more than I had originally expected. The main reason for not sharing the same adoration for this book as my other book blogger friends is purely my fault. The reality is that I really struggle to read Historical fiction, but I requested this for review anyway because I'd heard such great things about Code Name Verity - and I'm very glad I did.

This book is split into two perspectives; part 1 - Verity, and part 2 - Kittyhawk (Maddie). My main problem with this book (aside from my struggle with the genre) was that the writing in Verity's half of the book was very hard to sink into. I found myself skipping pages every so often because I just couldn't focus. Nevertheless, this problem didn't continue into Maddie's half which was fast paced, dramatic, and occasionally witty.

What really surprised me was how on point Elizabeth Wein's description of England was. Early on in the book Wein described Manchester it's dense Jewish population. Being from near here and having Jewish family from that area , I know that this remains absolutely true. There was also a passage in which Maddie and Queenie were riding on Queenie's bike through the countryside, and it was such a beautiful page that was bursting with imagery. I felt like I was there with the characters, and that's a rare talent for an author to have.

My flaws let me down when reading this, but I really recommend you pick this up.