Maastricht hotspot – De Brandweer Kantine

Looking for a nice place to get a drink and eat some lunch after you are done shopping in Maastricht? Then check out De Brandweer Kantine! They serve many dishes and drinks and offer a great place for some relaxation (or get some work done).

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Life in Outer Space by Melissa Keil – Book review

I literally just finished this one, and I can’t wait to share this with you guys! Here is my review about Life in Outer Space by Melissa Keil. There might be some spoilers, so read at your own risk!

 

The story

We follow Sam, a sarcastic, horror-movie buff who gets bullied by the popular kids, trying to survive high school (all very relatable). He has a group of friends: chubby Adrian who doesn’t know when to keep his mouth shut, gay Mike who doesn’t open his mouth at all, and Allison the shy anime weeb who often chews on her hair. They all hide during their breaks in the IT room (also, very relatable).

One normal day, everything changes when a new girl, Camilla, joins their class. She is popular, but not like the typical girls, she is pretty and nerdy, and gets along with everyone. She tries to become friends with Sam and his friend group as they seem to share the same interests. After hours of WoW and chatting, they are starting to get to know each other and their families. Camilla becomes part of the friend group and helps Sam with the troubles he is struggling with.

 

The Post-it says “AltheaZorg.”

I stare at the Post-it. 

Did she just ask me to play Warcraft? Is she a noob that I’m going to have to walk through a simple quest? Or have Justin and the Vessels of Wank put her up to something? Will there be a cast of the school’s biggest arsehat hanging out over a computer this evening plotting some brainless, but no doubt still humiliating, practical joke? 

I have no idea. But there is only one solution. 

I am never playing Warcraft again. 

 

The characters

Every character has its own quirks, characteristics, and troubles. They all grow as the story progresses. There is this thing about Mike, where he suddenly stops with his biggest passion ever: karate. He won’t tell anyone what is going on, and even his best and oldest friend Sam, can’t seem to get it out of him. Sam, trying to figure out his own problems, is pretty worried about his friend. A thing I really liked, is that the story about Mike doesn’t feel overly focus on the whole gay thing. He is just like any other normal person with that has their own inner demons to fight.

My problem

The only thing that did kind of bother me was the character of Camilla. She pretty much sounds like a Mary Sue: she is nice, very pretty, everyone likes her, has a sexy British accent, gets the whole school back together, is a daughter of a former model and a famous writer AND she likes all the nerd stuff. She magically cures Sam’s depression, and gets this whole class to stop bullying them, eventually sort of becoming friends?

There was this part where she mentioned that, because they had to travel so much, she had many other schools where she figures out how most people worked. This way she could get easily merge in with the new class. I was really intrigued about getting to know more about those past experiences of hers… but we never did. I tried to get over the whole Mary Sue act as quick as possible so I could enjoy the rest of the book.

Overall

A very light and happy fluffy book filled with great nerd puns and humour.

The sarcastic humour of Sam’s internal monologue is absolutely hilarious. There were so many parts that were just so relatable and made me laugh. Sam’s favourite movie: the original Halloween. (HELL YES, great choice!)

I suggest this book to any fellow nerds out there who are looking for a light read, filled with comedy and a bit of romance. There are MANY great movie references which is amazing! I am looking forward reading more if Melissa Keil. I am especially excited for The Amazing Adventures of Cinnamon Girl.

If any of you have suggestions some great reads I need to know about, let me know in the comments! And if you read Life in Outer Space, let me know what you think about it!

life in outer space review

The one memory of Flora Banks – Book review (trying to stay spoiler free!)

The one memory of Flora Banks, a book written by Emily Barr, is about a girl whose memory keeps getting reset, making her forget everything that has happened after her 10th birthday. It’s a thrilling mystery book with a hint of romance and teen troubles. These are my thoughts on this book. (I am trying to spoil as little as possible, but there might still be some small spoilers here and there, so be warned!)

‘Be brave.’

 

flora banks cover

Genres

  • Young Adult
  • Mystery
  • Psychological
  • Amnesia

Writing

The writing of book is quite unique, and so is the main character. The protagonist, Flora, keeps reminding herself the things that she remembers and writes notes on what she wants to remember. The writer takes the time to show the reader what actually goes on in Flora’s head and often repeats the things she remembers. I can see how some people might find it annoying the way everything keeps getting repeat, but it didn’t bother me at all. I actually think that this is really important, because we really understand what is going on inside her mind and how she gets to certain conclusions.

Story

The story starts with an intriguing prologue, making you want to keep on reading. After that we get to know Flora, in her own way. Flora doesn’t seem to remember anything after her tenth birthday, even though she is now 17 years old. But one day everything changes. After kissing her best friend’s boyfriend (Drake) on the beach, she somehow is able to remember. She is very excited, as this is something that had never happened before. Thinking that Drake is special, and will give her even more memories, she wants to be with him. The problem is that the boy is going to Svalbard, Norway, for his studies and has to leave the next day. Flora keeps everything a secret from her parents, but when her parents to go to Paris with Flora staying home alone, she seizes her chance go and look for the boy that will heal her.

Protagonist

Flora is a quirky and loving girl, having her own way of living and thinking. She has a strong mind and lots of willpower. Sadly her memory can get in the way of her being able to live her life to the fullest. She is a very cute character and definitely captures the hearts of the readers.

My opinion

Throughout this story we meet many people, we get to see what Flora’s day to day life looks like and we find out many secrets about her life. It is a psychological thriller and a real page turner. Your mind keeps wanting to solve the puzzle, thinking things like: maybe she just has an overly big imagination, or memories might have been distorted. Maybe she is just a stalker or maybe it all really happened the way she remembers. But you don’t know the truth until after you finish the book.

It is a great book that keeps you on the edge of your seat from beginning to end, as you discover secret after secret about Flora’s life. It is not the typical YA romance novel, but rather a psychological thriller, which for me is perfect. All in all I definitely recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a bit of mystery and thriller and cute quirky main-characters.

Ratings

I give this book a 4/5. Goodreads has listed it as a 3,5/5.

Bad, not recommended – 1
Not really my things – 2
It was fun, but.. – 3
Great read, recommended – 4
LOVE IT – 5

What are your thoughts on:

The one memory of Flora Banks?

 

An afternoon in Eindhoven – Onder de Leidingstraat: A great place to lunch!

We had a meet up at a friend’s house for a housewarming party! After a tour through the house and building we went to get some lunch.

We went to this super cute biological restaurant that serve the most amazing sandwiches! This is definitely on of my favorite places to lunch in Eindhoven: Onder de Leidingstraat. (Their breakfast menu looked very good too, so I will definitely have to come back!)

There are a lot of vegetarian and vegan options (which for me is perfect, because I don’t really like meat all that much). They have lots of amazing sandwiches and tasty salads.

I ordered the humus sandwich with fresh orange juice (the best kind of orange juice!). The sandwich was absolutely amazing! With paprika and zucchini slices, humus and arugula on spelt bread.

My friends were also very happy with their food! (The corn soup with coconut milk was so good!) For the sandwiches, you can choose between three different types of bread, ranging from light to dark.

The sorano ham sandwich was really good as well, with olive tappenade and pine nuts. And the salads are served with a nice slice of bread.

The interior is very cute and laid-back, with some real hipster vibes. A great hot spot to get some work done!

It is only a 10 minute walk from the train station and city-center, or you can take the bus and get off at the Strijp S bus stop.

There is also a small shop, which is part of the restaurant, with all kinds of biological products, and products that are used in making the dishes.

(There were also many different kinds of Tony’s Chocolonely flavours, so I just had to take a chocolate bar with me: white chocolate, with walnut and carrot, so good!)

If you are doing some shopping in Eindhoven, or you are in the neighborhood, I definitely recommend you checking out this place, as the food is nice and healthy, amazingly good and not that expensive either!

What is your favorite restaurant in Eindhoven?

Dinner in Maastricht – Korean restaurant Dadawan review

There are so many amazing restaurants in Maastricht that I have yet to discover! But one I can cross off my list now is Dadawan, A Korean style restaurant. Since we had to celebrate my friend going to Korea for some months and my other for getting a job in Japan (proud of you guys!), we went to Dadawan!

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An afternoon in Valkenburg – Lasergaming in the caves and delicious dinner

Last Friday it was my friend’s birthday, and that asks for a party! So all of us went lasergaming (which is already so much fun) in the caves in Valkenburg! (Even better YAY)

I really love Limburg for its not-Dutch-looking scenery and geography. Especially the area around Valkenburg is beautiful! There are caves, hills and lots of greenery, the perfect place for some hiking! But instead of hiking, I will tell you about my experience lasergaming in the caves and about a really nice restaurant where we had dinner.

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