Luna: Wolf Moon by Ian McDonald

Rating: 4 / 5 stars
Format: ebook
Published: 28th March 2017
Book Depository | Goodreads

A Dragon is dead.

Corta Helio, one of the five family corporations that rule the Moon, has fallen. Its riches are divided up among its many enemies, its survivors scattered. Eighteen months have passed .

The remaining Helio children, Lucasinho and Luna, are under the protection of the powerful Asamoahs, while Robson, still reeling from witnessing his parent’s violent deaths, is now a ward–virtually a hostage– of Mackenzie Metals. And the last appointed heir, Lucas, has vanished of the surface of the moon.

Only Lady Sun, dowager of Taiyang, suspects that Lucas Corta is not dead, and more to the point—that he is still a major player in the game. After all, Lucas always was the Schemer, and even in death, he would go to any lengths to take back everything and build a new Corta Helio, more powerful than before. But Corta Helio needs allies, and to find them, the fleeing son undertakes an audacious, impossible journey–to Earth.

The Luna series is set in a futuristic version of our own world where the moon is ran by 5 family owned companies. These books focus on the Corta family whose business; Corta Helio mines helium which is sent to Earth and “keeps the lights on”. The end of Luna: New Moon saw Corta Helio collapse and family members scatter all over the moon. Wolf Moon is the story of these characters trying to rebuild their lives.

I think the thing I liked most about this book was the sense of scale. Everything feels epic. From the descriptions of the underground cities, to events like a massive foundry explosion and satellites raining down on the Moon. Then you have the more abstract things like a character born on the moon going to Earth despite this being technically impossible and describing what it’s like to stand on another planet and look up at their home. That was cool.

My only problem with this book is it felt like the first half was you checking in with each character to see what they had been doing over the 2 years since the last book ended. It felt like the plot took a long time to get going. But I would still highly recommend this book. Also you should definitely start out with Luna: New Moon if you haven’t read it yet.

Buy Luna: Wolf Moon on Book Depository

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Large Constellations Dokibook Unboxing

Back on my March plan with me post I mentioned that I was changing up my organisation system and how I use my bullet journal. As part of that I wanted to move all my blog related things to a separate planner. Because of this I started doing some research into ring bound planners and came across Dokibook.

This is a company based in China who make ring binders similar to the Kikki.K and Filofax. I admit I was a little dubious at first because this was coming from China but I came across a number of people in the UK who have ordered from them. Fortunately I had nothing to worry about, the shipping from China was extremely quick. I got this within a week of ordering it. Another pro of using Dokibook is their ring binders are much cheaper than the Filofax alternative. This ended up being half the price of a similar Filofax I looked at, and that was including shipping.

The ring binder I picked out was the Constellations in the large size. The large is the equivalent of the A5 filofax. Pretty much as soon as I saw this binder I knew I had to buy it. I will pretty much buy anything with stars on it.

One downside of the Dokibook is that it doesn’t come with inserts, you have to buy them separately. I suppose this is a good thing if you have specific inserts you prefer. The binder did come with a plastic page marker and a top loading pocket. It also came with 6 plastic page dividers and though they are pretty nice, I will be making my own as soon as I get paper that matches this cover.

If you’re looking for a cheapish ring bound planner this is definitely one shop to look at.

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I Really Didn’t Like Cinderella

A few days ago I found out that Cinderella – the live action Disney remake version- was on Netflix. I decided to watch it because I had been wanting to for a long time. Very quickly I realised I did not like this movie in the slightest. I could have done some sort of review but instead I thought I would share some notes I took while watching the film.

  • Well they included Gus Gus and his bit of cheese which is a cute call back to the original movie.

  • I don’t know much about filmmaking but this conversation has been shot in a really strange way. Normally at some point you would see the two characters in the shot at the same time. But for both it’s just close ups on the characters on their own. It doesn’t even feel like they are standing next to each other. They could be halfway across the garden and you would never know.
  • Why do they show someone passing him the present. He could have just appeared with it and she could have had the exact same line. There is no reason for someone to sneakily give it to him.
  • Is she just going to die just cause she’s shit?
  • Yes she is.
  • Why don’t they explain if she’s sick or dying. Cause it appears that she’s just sick, but they are acting like she is literally going to die in the next 5 minutes.
  • He’s a pretty terrible father for not checking if Cinders and the two step-sisters get along before moving them in.
  • His face looks weird and I can’t tell why.
  • Like is he just pretending to not hear them bully Cinders? HE’S STANDING RIGHT THERE

  • She is exactly what I would expect an evil step-mother to look like. I may have watched The Devil Wear’s Prada just a few too many times…..
  • He’s totally gonna die.
  • They’ve done a very good job of making the step-sisters look like the animated versions.
  • Okay she isn’t happy about living in the attic but I would love having somewhere that no one would want to annoy me.
  • Also how the heck did they fit that massive tower inside the house? Is it like the tardis?
  • Oh wait. Is he dead? That’s such a shock!
  • Nothing says I love you like an old branch.

  • Oh wait. The step-mother is ginger. That explains everything.
  • Oh god.
  • Cinder+ella=Cinderella.
  • Please stop.
  • This is hurting me.
  • Can someone do a version of Cinderella where Prince Charming isn’t needed to save the day.

  • The panto version of this scene is way better. It also has more glitter.
  • Why do so many people die in this movie?
  • Too busy playing what movie was that actor in to actually watch the film.
  • Never thought I would see Nonso Anozie, Rob Brydon and Stellan Skarsgård in the same movie.
  • Omg Nonso Anozie did the voice for Hydroflax in Doctor Who. TIL!
  • I’m lost. Why is Rob Brydon lying on the ground?
  • Why are they making the mother and sisters so over the top evil. Isn’t it bad enough that she’s treated like a maid.
  • Wait. We’re 40 minutes in and the ball is about to happen? Are the credits just really long or something? Or have they done the awful thing and added more story to make it longer.
  • If this was a panto there would be two men in dresses throwing flour at each other right now.
  • Okay but why is she so mean. Being evil is fine but I like it when there is a reason.
  • Going with the classic help an old hag to prove she’s nice thing.
  • HAIRY DOGFATHER

  • Omg she looks like Glinda.
  • People who would be a better fairy godmother than Helena Boham Carter: basically any 90 year old lady.
  • You know the difference between a fairy and a fairy godmother. Wrinkles.
  • Okay we get it. The dress is swooshy.
  • She’s a pretty terrible fairy if she can’t make a pumpkin turn into a carriage for more than 4 hours.
  • [insert something witty about never turning up to a party on time]
  • It makes me mad that they came so close to having the Once Upon A Dream music.
  • I bet Stellan Skarsgård’s character is going to try and split them up.
  • You would be so pissed if you get invited to some fancy party and have to spend the whole thing watching the Prince dance with some fake princess.
  • Okay bored now. 

If you don’t know how it ends she runs away, he finds her using her shoe and they live happy ever after. 3/10.

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How I Edit My Instagram Photos Using VSCO & Photoshop

Today I thought I would share my photo editing process for Instagram. I love Instagram and I love sharing photos so hopefully you will find it useful. I should also point out that some of my photos are taken using my digital SLR so the process I use changes depending on what camera I took the photo with. I know some people think not using a phone is cheating but my view has always been use the best camera you have available. Sometimes this is my phone and sometimes this is my SLR.

Another little handy tip for any bloggers out there. You can change your Instagram account to a business account. All you need to do is link it to a Facebook page. By doing this you can see how many views your photos and profile page got. It can also show you when most of your followers are active so you can schedule posts around that.

Photoshop

I use a combination of Lightroom and Photoshop to edit my images. I realise that for most people Photoshop isn’t something they can justify having. But I have the Creative Cloud subscription because I need it for my course. GIMP is a good free alternative if you don’t want to pay anything.

I import the images onto my PC using Lightroom then open them in Photoshop. I use the Camera RAW filter to edit my photos, you can do the exact same editing process in Lightroom but I find it a bit easier in Photoshop. There are no hard rules for how I edit my photos, usually I increase the brightness, make sure the white parts of the image are a true white and increase the saturation. Basically I try and make my images look very bright and colourful.

I crop my images into a square and save them at 1080 by 1080 pixels. I then save this file to my Google Drive, which I can then find again using the Drive app on my phone and open it in Instagram.

VSCO

If I am out and about or occasionally at home and feeling lazy I will use my phone to take Instagram pictures. I should point out that there is nothing wrong with taking photos on your phone. Personally I feel that between my phone and camera I get better pictures out of my camera, but phones have become so advanced now that you can get some really good photos.

VSCO is a great little free app. It has photo editing features and also has a social media side. The social media side is really skewed more towards professional photography rather than selfies but it’s still fun to look at. I know I said the app was free but some of the filters you need to pay for. These are usually pretty cheap though, around £1-2, they also have sales where some are discounted and even given away for free.

I import my photos into VSCO and use the S3 filter. I use this filter for all of my photos to give them a cohesive look. I feel that this on in particular makes my photos look very bright, especially when there is a lot of white in the image. I will go on to adjust the brightness and contrast just depending on the photo. I will occasionally adjust the tint if the whites aren’t showing through as true white.

I will occasionally crop the photo in the VSCO app but it really just depends on what I’m using the image for. If I’m just posting it to Instagram I won’t crop the image since I can do this in Instagram. But if it’s a photo that I know will be going on my blog I’ll crop the photo to my desired size in the app.

I hope everyone found this useful. I suppose I should also take this moment to promote my Instagram page which you should totally go follow.

instagram.com/bluchickenninja

Thanks for reading.
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