June Favourites

It’s time for another one of these! They’re still my favourite blog posts to write, so enjoy.

I spent most of June backpacking around Cambodia and a bit of Thailand. It was tiring but brilliant and I’m so glad I went. I think next time that I’ll choose a nice hotel over hostels though, at times it was a bit…….rural. Hah.

Anyway here’s me doing some cool stuff there:

Okay, now you’re suitably jealous, here’s my faves.

Play: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

tumblr_o9l3vwLkqd1qa24muo1_400.jpgYES, I’VE SEEN IT. IT WAS SO GOOD. INCANDESCENTLY GOOD!! I’ll probably talk about it more after the script is released because #keepthesecrets, but: Scorpius is my favourite, Rose is too good for him, Albus needs a good long hug, grown-up Harry is smoking hot (my friend Madi spent the whole show whispering #DATASS in my ear), HERMIONE!!!!!!!!!!!

It’s just so magical and lovingly created and I have NO idea how they did some of the magic special effects. And the ending!! It’s so JKR! It’s literally the eighth novel, and anyone who’s bracing themselves for disappointment does not have to worry at all.

(But I would recommend waiting to see it live, if you can avoid reading the script. I KNOW THAT’S IMPOSSIBLE. But it will make the experience about 1000% better. Trust me.)

Book: The Yellow Room by Jess Vallance

27809137.jpgSixteen-year-old Anna receives a letter from her father’s girlfriend telling her he has died and asking to meet. Anna is drawn to Edie: her warmth, her character, her ability to rustle up delicious meals, all of which her own mother is seemingly incapable of . . .
and the way she can tell Edie the secret that is buried inside her.

A tautly told, compelling tale about mothers and daughters and the lengths that some will go to, to make their dreams come true.

I read this in one sitting. It’s another incredibly dark story of obsession, revenge and love. Jess Vallance is one of the most underrated UKYA authors and she’s an auto-read for me.


TV Show: Gilmore Girls

This has just gone on Netflix, and I’m watching it for the first time. I’m already on series 2. Luke and Lorelai just need to kiss already, obviously. And I’m unashamed to say I’m wholeheartedly shipping Rory/Paris. #noregrets

(Also, Dean is the official Worst. And I love Emily. I HAVE SO MANY GILMORE GIRLS FEELINGS, HELP ME.)


This post hit me hard in my deepest fears, and it really calmed them a lot. It’s very inspirational to learn that the worst things that can happen to an author – having your series cancelled, not selling enough books – never mean it’s the end. As long as you keep writing good books, they will get published. And one day you might be Victoria Schwab!

At 25, I was scarred, terrified that my career was over, because I’d given something everything I had, and it wasn’t enough, and I didn’t understand how or why or what I was supposed to do next, and part of me wished I’d walked away back when that first book didn’t sell, but I didn’t. I couldn’t. And my anger, my frustration, my stubborn resolve was louder than my fear, so I sat down and wrote something else.

It was a book for me. A book to restore my joy, to remind me why I did this masochistic thing. And it was a secret, a sheltering of the creative process so that that no publisher could take away what the writing of it gave me.


Film: Ghostbusters

Okay, this only came out in July, but I cAN’T STOP THINKING ABOUT IT, so it’s going in my faves this month. I watched the whole thing in wide eyed amazement. Four strong women, who aren’t objectified or body shamed! Three of whom are SCIENTISTS! The other of whom is a historian! A loving, feminist sense of humour what doesn’t mock anyone! Fake geek guy Chris Hemsworth! KATE MCKINNON.



In other news: I did a really emotional interview over at Siobhan Curham’s brilliant new website – check it out here at the blog.

I also did a short radio interview over at the Gateway YA Book club here: https://gatewayyabookclub.tumblr.com/post/147852145393/

My big giveaway, where I’m offering query critiques and signed annotated copies of TNT, is open here until the 6th August.

I’m going to be staying in London for all of August. I’m so excited, and I’m going to see ALL THE MUSICALS. If you have any suggestions for cool things I should do, or you’re going to be around and want to hang out, hmu!!

A reminder about some of my upcoming events: I’m going to be at YALC ON Sat 30th, doing a workshop with Alice Oseman at 2pm on ‘Fandom Vs Creator: Authors on social media’, with a signing afterwards. I’ll be around for the rest of the day too, and I’d love to see you all if you come along! (Related: Alice posted her uni dissertation on her blog! It’s so good, you should read it if you’re at all interested in something called “Words were different when they lived inside of you’: Queering Genre in Young Adult Fiction”.

I’ve also got an event at Waterstones Oxford on August 14th at 4pm. It’s a Historical Fiction panel with Rhian Ivory, Katherine Woodfine, Emma Carroll and Helen Maslin.



Published by Lauren James

Lauren James is the twice Carnegie-nominated British author of many Young Adult novels, including Green Rising, The Reckless Afterlife of Harriet Stoker and The Loneliest Girl in the Universe. She is a RLF Royal Fellow, freelance editor and screenwriter. Lauren is the founder of the Climate Fiction Writers League, and on the board of the Authors & Illustrators Sustainability Working Group through the Society of Authors. Her books have sold over a hundred thousand copies worldwide and been translated into six languages. The Quiet at the End of the World was shortlisted for the YA Book Prize and STEAM Children’s Book Award. Her other novels include The Next Together series, the dyslexia-friendly novella series The Watchmaker and the Duke and serialised online novel An Unauthorised Fan Treatise. She was born in 1992, and has a Masters degree from the University of Nottingham, where she studied Chemistry and Physics. Lauren is a passionate advocate of STEM further education, and many of her books feature female scientists in prominent roles. She sold the rights to her first novel when she was 21, whilst she was still at university. Her writing has been described as ‘gripping romantic sci-fi’ by the Wall Street Journal and ‘a strange, witty, compulsively unpredictable read which blows most of its new YA-suspense brethren out of the water’ by Entertainment Weekly. Lauren lives in the West Midlands and is an Arts Council grant recipient. She has written articles for numerous publications, including the Guardian, Buzzfeed, Den of Geek, The Toast, and the Children’s Writers and Artist’s Yearbook 2022. She has taught creative writing for Coventry University, WriteMentor, and Writing West Midlands.

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