Ethan’s Secret by Patrick Hodges

Ethan's Secret by Patrick Hodges - Lauren Mayhew AuthorEthan’s Secret – Patrick Hodges – 5 Stars

Blurb: Kelsey Callahan is smart, tough and fiercely loyal to her friends. She wants nothing more than to follow in her father’s footsteps, and be a detective just like her hero, Sherlock Holmes.

A lover of mysteries, she finally gets the chance to solve something on her own when Ethan, a cute but mysterious loner appears in her class. Both fascinated and infatuated with him, Kelsey soon learns there are events at play in Ethan’s life that are both tragic and dangerous.

Events that, the deeper she digs, may end up threatening not only their relationship but their very lives.

What I like: I loved the first book in the James Madison trilogy, so I’m not sure why it took me so long to get around to reading Ethan’s Secret. I’ll be reading Sophie’s Different, the final book in the series next. I really want to know what happens next, even though the characters may be slightly different. Continue reading “Ethan’s Secret by Patrick Hodges”

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My Current WIP – Update 1

Cycles of War - My Current WIP - Lauren Mayhew AuthorNow that I’m no longer directing a play for my theatre group (which went really well), or writing blogs for the A-Z Challenge, I actually have a spare minute or two to go over Cycles of War (Working Title), my current WIP. You can catch up on all of my A-Z blogs here. If you haven’t read about Cycles of War yet, go here and here to see why it’s taking me so long to do anything and what I was up to last time I stopped procrastinating.

So, since my last post, I have managed to change the names of all the ships and I’ve even attempted to make them relevant to the country that the ships originated from. I don’t want to specify which countries are involved though. With this book it’s way too easy to offend people, so I’m avoiding being too specific, but a few vague hints are good enough. I’d love to know people’s thoughts when I finally finish it. I’ve also managed to change the majority of the names of the characters too, which I’m very happy about. I needed to get that done before I carried on with anything else. Continue reading “My Current WIP – Update 1”

A-Z Blog Challenge 2018 – Reflection

A-Z Blog Challenge - Reflection Post - Lauren Mayhew AuthorThe Most Played Songs on my iPod A-Z

The A-Z Challenge has reached its end for 2018 and I’m glad to say it was a success for me! I’ve gained a few followers and I’ve spoken to many more people this time round compared to the last time I participated in 2016, so thank you to all of you that came along and commented or liked my posts!

2016 was my first year of doing any kind of challenge on my blog, so I was a little unsure about what I was doing. Although I did explore a few blogs through the month, I didn’t really take part in the way that I should have done, only really commenting on one blog throughout the whole thing. This time I made sure it was different. During the theme reveal, I made a spreadsheet (always a spreadsheet) and noted down the URL’s of the blogs that I thought would interest me the most. These are the ones that I’ve visited since day one. A few others I’ve picked up along the way, either because you visited me, or I looked at the daily letter list. Continue reading “A-Z Blog Challenge 2018 – Reflection”

Avengers: Infinity War

Avengers Infinity War Film Review - Lauren Mayhew AuthorAvengers: Infinity War – 5 out of 5 Stars

Synopsis: Iron Man, Thor, the Hulk and the rest of the Avengers unite to battle their most powerful enemy yet — the evil Thanos. On a mission to collect all six Infinity Stones, Thanos plans to use the artefacts to inflict his twisted will on reality. The fate of the planet and existence itself has never been more uncertain as everything the Avengers have fought for has led up to this moment.

There really isn’t a lot I can say about Avengers: Infinity War without giving away too much of the plot, so this could be the shortest review I’ve ever written. All I can really say is that this is one film you don’t want to miss. Continue reading “Avengers: Infinity War”

Z – Zero to Hero from Hercules (and Zombie by The Cranberries)

A-Z Blog Challenge - Zero to Hero from Hercules - Lauren Mayhew AuthorZero to Hero from Hercules (and Zombie by The Cranberries) – 2 Plays – 1 ‘Z’ Song in Total

Welcome to the last day of this year’s A-Z Challenge! Can you believe how quickly this month has gone? I honestly don’t know what I’m going to do with myself after this. Here’s ‘Z’. It’s another one of those days where I only had one song in the category, but this time I don’t really feel like I can talk about it that much. I’ve only listened to Zero to Hero twice since I put it on my iPod, so it’s not a song that I know very well. It’s a good song, but Hercules never has been one of my favourite Disney films, though I’m pretty sure Meg is my spirit animal/ cartoon. The video for Zero to Hero is at the bottom of the blog.

So, instead of talking about Zero to Hero, I’m going to talk about the song Zombie by The Cranberries. It’s not on my iPod, but a friend mentioned it to me a few days ago when I said I was going to struggle with this post. I can’t believe I’ve never listened to it before. It really is an incredible song. Very political, but incredible. Dolores O’Riordan’s voice is so pure and strong, it’s a shame that she’s no longer with us. I’m definitely going to check out some of her other music, not just the stuff with The Cranberries. The video for Zombie is also at the bottom of the post. Continue reading “Z – Zero to Hero from Hercules (and Zombie by The Cranberries)”

Y – You Belong with Me by Taylor Swift

A-Z Blog Challenge - You Belong With Me by Taylor Swift - Lauren Mayhew AuthorYou Belong With Me by Taylor Swift – 27 Plays – 24 ‘Y’ Songs in Total

You Belong With Me by Taylor Swift would have hit my radar back in 2008/ 2009 when it was released. I don’t know if I purchased the album, Fearless, straight away, but I’ve definitely been listening to Taylor for a long time. There are some absolute gems of songs hidden in her albums that I wish had become more well known, unfortunately, none of them reached the tops of any of the lists except for this one. Maybe in a few years time she’ll start creeping up higher, but for now, you’ll have to make do with this being her only appearance.

You Belong With Me is one of Taylor’s first songs and it still has that country twang to it. I have a soft spot for country music and I really should listen to more of it. A lot of Taylor’s later music deviates into pop rather than country, so I appreciate her older albums because of their country roots. It’s quite a light-hearted love song too. It’s not dreary or depressing so it’s easy to listen to, no matter what mood you might be in. The video for You Belong With Me is at the bottom of the post. It’s a really cute video, so definitely worth a few minutes of your time. Continue reading “Y – You Belong with Me by Taylor Swift”

X – 3am by Busted

A-Z Blog Challenge - 3am by Busted - Lauren Mayhew Author3am by Busted  31 Plays – 0 X Songs in Total

3am by Busted was released way back in 2003. I would have been 11 years old. That was back in the days that I absolutely loved Busted but refused to listen to McFly. I thought McFly were copy cats, never having realised that Tom from McFly worked closely with James from Busted to create albums for both bands. I was young. I didn’t realise that I could love both bands at the same time. I’m so glad I changed my mind though. This challenge would have looked a lot different without McFly to fill in a few of the gaps.

There’s something quite simple about 3am that I absolutely love. It’s a very repetitive song with regards to lyrics and melody, but it doesn’t make it boring like with some other songs. It’s another breakup song, like the majority of songs I’ve written about in this challenge. However, it’s a song with some hope in it too. I like to think that the couple got back together again. That’s if the girl’s car didn’t break down before she got to speak to her boyfriend. I think I also love the power in Matt’s voice here. There’s so much passion, it’s hard not to like the song. You can see the video for 3am at the bottom of the post.   Continue reading “X – 3am by Busted”

W – Warzone by The Wanted

A-Z Blog Challenge - Warzone by The Wanted - Lauren Mayhew AuthorWarzone by The Wanted – 52 Plays – 87 ‘W’ Songs in Total

I heard Warzone on The Wanted’s second album, Battleground, not long before it was released as a single. It was one of those songs that I had to listen to again and again. There’s something so pure about it. For the second and final time in this challenge, I will admit to Warzone not actually being the number one song in the ‘W’ category. Number one was Weakness by The Wanted. I loved it when I first heard it, but the more I played it, the more I realised how weak the song was lyrically – no pun intended. It’s not the best song they’ve done, but you can have a listen here.

I love how half way through Warzone they start to hum, it reminds me of the Misty Mountain song from The Hobbit. (Watch here.) However, it’s another one of those frustrating songs that I can’t sing. To begin with it’s way too deep, but then the chorus is a little too high. I literally can’t win. It’s a very powerful song too, though it’s difficult to find a good live version. Maybe it had a bit too much power for some of the singers. You can find the official video at the bottom of the post. Continue reading “W – Warzone by The Wanted”

V – I Won’t Let You Go by James Morrison

A-Z Blog Challenge - I Won't Let You Go by James Morrison - Lauren Mayhew AuthorI Won’t Let You Go by James Morrison – 60 Plays – 0 ‘V’ Songs in Total

So… As you’ve probably already noticed, I Won’t Let You Go doesn’t begin with a ‘V’. I have zero ‘V’ songs on my iPod. Of all the letters I thought I’d struggle with, ‘V’ wasn’t one of them. Instead, I’ve decided to talk about a song that I absolutely love, and I’m sure a few of you will be pleased to know – it’s not by The Wanted. James Morrison has always been one of my favourite artists, see yesterday’s post for more information about him! When I first heard I Won’t Let You Go I knew that it would be one of my all-time favourite songs ever. I stumbled upon it on YouTube I think. Although I still listened to James Morrison on my iPod, I hadn’t been following him closely enough to realise that he’d released his third album. As soon as I found out, I think it might be the quickest I’ve ever purchased anything in my life, except for the Harry Potter books of course!

It’s not just James Morrison’s voice that I love, it’s the whole song. The music, the lyrics, the meaning behind it. Everything. The song is from Morrison’s third album, The Awakening. It has some good songs on it, one of which I would use as the soundtrack to my first book if I had the rights to use it! The song that I’m talking about is actually called, The Awakening too. Listen to it here. You can also find out about my books here! You can watch the video for I Won’t Let You Go at the bottom of the post. Continue reading “V – I Won’t Let You Go by James Morrison”

A Doll’s House – Opening Night

A Doll's House Poster - Brightlight Theatre Company - Lauren Mayhew AuthorFor those of you that may be new to my blog, welcome! For those of you who’ve been here for a while, here’s a quick update all about my experience directing a play. I’ve been with my theatre group for two years now, and they have been the best two years ever! At the very end of last year, I was tasked with directing a play, but not just any play, Henrik Ibsen’s ‘A Doll’s House’.

Brightlight Theatre Company usually work with comedies or murder mysteries, so ‘A Doll’s House’ was the first classic drama that we’ve done. It made us all a little nervous, as our audience usually expect to come along and have a laugh, not to watch a drama about a family set in the 1800’s. Regardless of this fact, the audience absolutely loved our opening show on Saturday! Continue reading “A Doll’s House – Opening Night”