Sinister 2: Review by Holly Bareham

Sinister 2

When I saw the trailer for this film I wasn’t sure that I wanted to watch it. I didn’t think it looked crap or anything but honestly… I thought it looked too scary for me. That is the honest truth. The first film scared me; I will admit that – I remember watching it with my friends and absolutely shitting my pants. I don’t know what it is about it. It doesn’t quite scare me as much as ‘The Babadook’ but it definitely still scares me. The second film looked just as scary.

If you’ve seen the first film then you know the basic premise and how it’s about ‘the bogey man’ or whatever. The second film revolves around a different family, a single mother with her two sons. One of the sons can communicate with children in the house who show him tapes similar to the ones we saw in the first film. We all know the basic set up here (spoiler alert for those who didn’t see the first film) – all the tapes get watched, the kid kills their family and then they go with ‘the bogey man’.

This film changed directors but kept Scott Derickson (the original director) as a writer. You notice the change of director as the second film was telling a completely different story. Instead of focusing on the bogey man, this film focused more on the kids and showed them trying to influence and manipulate the family instead of the bogey man scaring them into acting.

This film didn’t waste any time. Most horror films start calmly and then build up to the scares but this one threw you right into the deep end. I was already crapping myself and jumped out of my seat when someone walked into the film late. I must admit though that although the jump scares were effective, I didn’t find it as scary as the first one. The first one managed to scare me even when I was sat in my own living room with my friends. The cinema makes all films scarier. I feel like the first half was scary and then it just kind of died down.

Okay and I just couldn’t believe how much of an asshole that one kid was. Not in an ‘omg-don’t-you-think-that-kid-was-an-asshole’ kind of way, I mean he was so much of an asshole that it wasn’t realistic. Those who have seen it will know exactly who I’m talking about straightaway and I couldn’t take him seriously.

Overall, I think it is what it is. I don’t think it brought anything new to the franchise really, it just continued the story a bit longer. Also, the trailer made it look a lot scarier than it actually was. I guess I’d recommend this film to anyone who enjoyed the first film. If you didn’t like or didn’t particularly have an opinion about the first one then it’s probably not worth your time.

Review: The Art of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson

The Art of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson

First of all, I would like to apologise for not updating in so long – I’ve actually read quite a few books but I’ve been so busy these past few weeks because I’ve been getting ready for university and now I’m finally here! As it’s Fresher’s Week I might have time to catch up on reviews but who knows how much time I’ll have after that? I will try and keep updating regularly though!

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So I mentioned an event in my previous review that I was going to which was a book talk/signing with Louise O’Neill, David Levithan and Lisa Williamson which was extremely interesting and funny and I got my books signed!

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The Art of Being Normal – Lisa Williamson

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Only Ever Yours – Louise O’Neill

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Another Day – David Levithan (I guess he misread my name as Mozzie?)

I’d write a review about the signing but to be honest I can’t really remember what was said – I do remember meeting them and Louise telling a story of how I accidentally made her feel disappointed on Twitter which was a pretty funny but anyway, back to the point.

I finished this book the day before the signing so I’ve only just had the chance to write a review about it. ‘The Art of Being Normal’ is told from the point of view of two characters called David and Leo. David is a girl trapped inside a boy’s body and is too afraid to tell her parents the truth. Leo is the mysterious new guy. Both of them have their secrets and after Leo stands up for David in a fight at school an unlikely friendship forms.

There is nothing I love more than reading about characters that are massively underrepresented in most YA novels so to have a transgender protagonist was just a breath of fresh air to be honest. David was easy to connect to and I instantly liked her straightaway. The book starts in his point of view and then switches to Leo’s point of view in the next chapter. At first I didn’t particularly like Leo that much and didn’t see what exactly he brought to the story but as the book progressed I started to love him and now I’m so glad Lisa made the choice she did to write from two different points of view.

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David’s story is mostly centred around the fact that she wants to be a girl and is too afraid to tell her parents, the typical stuff you imagine you would read about a transgender protagonist but then she ends up helping out Leo with his ‘quest’ to find his real Dad so luckily, the story wasn’t just about David working up the nerve to eventually tell her parents.

I love this book and I think it’s a real stepping stone to having transgender characters whose storylines aren’t purely revolved around the fact that they’re transgender. A book with a transgender character where the fact that they’re trans has little to no effect on the overall storyline would be awesome. And by that I mean, I want a ‘Harry Potter’ style book with transgender characters.

I would definitely recommend this book to any readers that I have (and I hope I have some?) because it’s written so brilliantly and tells an amazing story that you won’t forget anytime soon. So go and buy it!