Friday, April 27, 2012

A Guest Post by Shirley Marr and an Awesome Preloved Giveaway

Hello everybody,

the Nocturnal Library is honored and happy to be able to host Shirley Marr's Preloved Blog Tour LAST stop today! The book has being going 'round and 'round for the past ten days now and if you want to check out the other stops (each and every one amazing in their own, original way), just take a look HERE.

Her debut book, Fury, was one of my favorite reads of 2011 (I bitched and fussed so much to get my hands on that one... Fishpond, I'm looking at you and I am getting my sushi knives ready, remember *insert evil laugh here*), so I was thrilled when our little blog got a chance to be part of the Preloved Blog Tour. I am actually starting to read my own copy tonight so stick around for my review during the course of the next week!

Without further ado, let's leave the spotlight to the author herself and let's hear what she has to say about...

Shirley's Top and Bottom 5 of the Awesome 80s 
(Warning, May Contain Traces of Blue Eyeshadow)

Guest Post by Shirley Marr

Hey Cool Dudes! Welcome to Maja and Lisa's Rad Blog. This is my very last stop on the Preloved tour (sad), but we will go out with a fun bang (and a fun giveaway!). As 80s David Bowie would say, put on your red shoes (and maybe your purple taffeta dress) and join me on an irrelevant stroll through the 80s. Mind the shoulder pads (it might take your eye out).


Worst: shoulder pads. I've never understood them. I can understand why women would want more shapely curves or a larger bust - but bigger shoulders? Why? Is it an intimidation tactic like when cats do the whole puffed-up tail thing? I've seen the "mini" shoulder pad make a resurgence of late and maybe that is filling a need for people that have Shoulder Envy, but let's leave the major shoulder pads back in the 80s. Do I have least one shoulder pad joke in Preloved. I better!

Best: I know most would disagree, but I think that the evening and prom dresses of the 80s are beautiful! Amongst those tafetta fashion disasters, there were genuinely really wonderful dresses, like this dress modelled by Princess Di. Velvet and fishtail are two things to emerge from the 80s which I think resonate positively today. As an experiment I went looking at genuine 80s dresses and I found this aquamarine lace number which I think is quite lovely** (what do you think?). Despite it all, the 80s was a wonderful time of experimentation, frivolousness and fun! I wish fashion would take itself less seriously these days and just let its hair down so I put this idea in Preloved.


Best: I know everyone instantly thinks of awful 80s synths and lyrics (like "when will I/ will I be famous/I can't answer/ I can't answer that" C'mon Bros, seriously?), but there was some great experimental music coming out that was doing electronica pop right. My top 3 albums of the decade would be Hounds of Love by Kate Bush (1985); Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps) by David Bowie (1980) and Icehouse by Flowers (1980). Plus who doesn't love 80s power ballads such as Eternal Flame by The Bangles, True by Spandau Ballet and Eyes Without a Face by Billy Idol? Well, I'm pretty sure my hairbrush and Karaoke machine love them anyway! If Preloved had a mixed tape I am sure these songs would make it in there.

Worst: I think there must be hundreds of terrible 80s songs with terrible video clips. My nomination for worst 80s song would be We Built This City by Starship. There's so much hair in that clip I think it suffocated me. I hope this song is on nobody's mixed tape.


Best: The Princess Bride. Based on the book by William Goldman. I think this movie has everything - a wonderful fairytale story, script and beautiful cinematography. It's funny, romantic, dark and probably has some of the most quotable lines ever! Plus it's got Many Patinkin. I have to admit this movie has a deep childhood connection with me. I wish that they made kid's movies like they did back in the 80s like Labyrinth, Dark Crystal, E.T and cheesy teen movies like The Breakfast Club and Pretty in Pink… but maybe today's audience are too savvy for that sort of thing. I'll stop reminiscing like an old person now. I think one or two of these movies ended up in the novel.

Worst: Grease 2, Xanadu and BMX Bandits. Sorry Livvy and Nic!

Book Characters

Worst: Logan Bruno from The Babysitter's Club. Yes, I named one of my characters after what I consider the worst character from an 80s book. I guess I just roll like that? Logan is like Peter from The Secret Seven, but with hormones, football and a Southern accent. Logan is an asshat. I think Ann M. Martin wrote him in as wish fulfilment cos why would a jock also be a sensitive boy sitter and also date Mary Anne Spiers who has a personality equivalent to Bella Swann's? I guess I chose the name because Logan Bruno is too good to be true as a real boy:)

Best: Penny Pollard by Robin Klein. Oh gosh I loved her so much! Does anyone remember Penny or is it just me reminiscing over my childhood glory years? She appeared in a series of books that were set out like a real diary, scrapbook etc and included photos, clippings and doodlings. This is me speaking fondly in hindsight. I might read the books again and cringe… but I remember her being a feisty, loveable and hilarious character with very frank observations and questions about life, school and boys. Like a young Kylie Mole! Okay, I feel so nostalgic. I'm going to have to find the books now. This one is going to turn into a Goodreads challenger for sure.


Worst: Cabbage Patch Dolls. I am so sorry if you had one as a child and loved it, but admit it, they're kinda creepy. Actually, not that long ago I was talking with a friend and they mentioned something about Cabbage Patch Dolls being Satanic and/or possessed and like all good Urban Legends it might have been true. Or fake. Or true and made to appear fake, but actually was fake. And there was also a story about these dolls eating children's hair?? I am too scared to Google this myself. if you know, please let me know. There are no Cabbage Patch Dolls mentioned in Preloved. I didn't want it to be that scary. 

Best: Practically anything that isn't a Cabbage Patch Doll, actually! Does anyone remember Pound Puppies? They were like Cabbage Patch Dolls and you adopted them, but they were actually really cute and had this awesome pro-animal and pro-shelter message. Then there are of course Care Bears, My Little Ponies, Strawberry Shortcake. Anyone who remembers Wuzzles gets a cookie. I had a Rubix cube which I never figured out (I cheated by removing all the stickers and rearranging them) and I am sure I came close to breaking my neck on a pogo ball. Some of these things rate a mention in Preloved!

Thanks for reading my guest post and thanks to Maja and Lisa for having me stop by. As a parting gift I'm giving away a $50 voucher to my favourite vintage-inspired online store - Modcloth - so you too can help build up a preloved-look wardrobe. All you have to do is answer the question:

"What would be your most loved or hated thing from the 80s?"

See below for details and also how you can win a copy of Preloved!

**Credits: 80s aquamarine lace cocktail dress ($25) worn by Shirley is from Retro Vinnies in Northbridge, Perth. Thanks to the cute Emo manager who helped me pick this dress.

What an awesome post! 
Thanks to Shirley Marr for bringing her witty, sassy self to The Nocturnal Library and taking us back in time. Gosh, those shoulder pads... ouch. I used to wear them too. With t-shirts. Stuck under bra straps. *off to burn all pictures from that time*

So here comes the time for the prizes. 

To enter the book giveaway: use the Rafflecopter below! The rules are always the same, it's open internationally (everywhere, since I'll be sending). Once the winner is announced, he/she will receive an email and will have 72 hours to get back to us. Failure to do so will result in us picking another winner.

To enter the voucher giveaway: answer Shirley's question in the comments. The funniest answer will be picked by Shirley herself at the end of the giveaway!

Good luck to all!

Lisa & Maja

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Shirley you look amazing in that dress :D You're changing my mind about 80's fashion, but those 50's and 60's dresses are still my favourite.

    My most loved thing from the 80's: Marty McFly. Cuteness. *sigh*

  2. Grease 2 always gets so much hate but I LOVE IT! And Wuzzle, I had 2, Hoppopotamus and Moosel but I really wanted Eleroo and Bumblelion. Also I had a Chiggle, a Popple and Glow Worm and a billion other awesome 80s toys, today's kids are missing out big time!

    This was such a good post to end on, Shirley! Thanks so much for having this tour!

    1. Popples and Glo Worms! YES! Okay, now I have to think of another answer. :)

  3. Shirley, that dress is awesome. Lisa, pics! :)

    I loved NKOTB and Debbie Gibson. Electric Youth! And Jem! No one else is the same. Jem is my name!

  4. I loved New kids on the block! Playing on the Nintendo and I used to have those jeans with prints on from famous t.v shows like Ghostbusters and Teenage mutant ninja turtles yes I used to think I was well cool! Also my favourite film Gremlins! Thanks for the giveaway ladies! :)

  5. So one of our amazing US television shows centers on people's strange obsessions (well, we have several shows like that). Anyway, there is this one episode where a retired couple built an outbuilding that is climate-controlled and super nice...for their like 5,000 Cabbage Patch Kids (they call them their kids). They have one called Kevin who is their favorite and when they get a new batch, KEVIN GETS TO PICK WHO STAYS OR GOES! Here you go:

    1. Flan..I actually saw those,weirdos on Anderson...creepy!

    2. Like IN REAL LIFE you saw them? Or just the same special that I saw? Either way, they cracked me up. Kevin is a MONSTER--the control he has over who gets to stay. What a little Cabbage Patch jerk! ;-)

  6. I love 80s music! Billy Joel, AC/DC/ Metallica, Scorpions, Guns n' roses, Motorhead, Iron Maiden...

  7. Fantastic post, ladies :) I'm actually a big fan of lots of things from the 80s, especially the clothes. I have a stash of 80s dresses and I'm not afraid to wear them!

  8. Oh, those 80's -- legwarmers-- exercise tights -- thank goodness for yoga pants. This is a fantastic post - I remember those stupid shoulder pads. They were horrible.

  9. okay didn't see it mentioned anywhere, but the artist Tiffany was favorite thing of the 80's. I still have the vinyl somewhere. LOL

  10. I admit to have massive love for 80's music. Their hair may have been damn scary but they sure made some great music. :)

  11. I love Cher's "If I Could Turn Back Time" video outfit, and the fact that she still wears it!!! I saw her live for my 21st birthday and gosh that woman is fierce! :D

    Angie @ Pinkindle Reads & Reviews

  12. Great last stop! The thing I loved the most about the eighties was my youth. Oh how I miss it. :)

    I was such a fan of pound puppies, but I was an even bigger fan of pound purries. Does anyone else remember them? The kitty cat version? So cute. I had a little black and white one.

  13. i loved the pound puppies and of course the cabbage patch kids. i was pretty young in the 80s so most everything i loved was toys. i also loved the care bears and care bear cousins my gloworm and my little ponies. i could go on forever! and i know my favorite thing to watch was rainbow brite, fraggle rock, muppet babies. wow kinda makes me miss the 80s haha : )

  14. I grew up in the 80s and have the hideous yearbook photos to prove it. Worse thing? Got to be the BIG hair:)

  15. I can't believe this is the end of the tour! I have stalked Shirley everyday. Shirley, you write some awesome guest posts! Oh my gosh all these eighty posts have taken me back. So agree about the shoulder pad thing. I hated them and was always cutting them out of my clothes because they alwasy flopped around and never stayed in place. Carebears were the best and yes I remember Pound Puppies. I had Strawberrry Shortcake dolls, which my mom just brought back to me two weeks ago when she visited. I never got the whole Cabbage Kid thing either, I thought they were ugly. Do you rememeber the Garbage Pail Stickers? My younger siblings used to collect those. I loved Jelly shoes and friendship bracelets. Do you remember making those, pinning the colored thread to your pants so you can make the bracelet? The eighties music...oh my gosh my first kiss was to The Bangles Eternal Flame...totally takes me back. Princess Bride was one of those epic eighties movies. My other all time fav eighties movies is Stand By Me..that epic barf or rama scene..
    Then you have to remember the big hair and Aqua Net hair spray.. oh my gosh the smell of that stuff it is wonder more girls didn't catch thier hair on fire. Then you have all the heavy metal, big hair bands, talk about bad fashion.
    I think some of the worst stuff from the eighties was lycra bike shorts, parachute pants, leg warmers and stirup pants.
    Thanks so much for such a great tour, Shirley, I enjoyed the trip down memory lane!

  16. The mullets especially female mullets....:/ (some people can pull them off, but....not everyone can)

  17. I love this post so much!
    But ARE YOU KIDDING ME ABOUT THE SHOULDER PADS HATE? I absolutely love shoulder pads but only secretly. I once tried on a dress that had 'Secret Shoulder Pads' and my friend and I thought that would be an excellent name for a girl band.

    Also, I love the Bangles SO MUCH.
    My favourite 80s thing has to be Back to the Future. I would provide a reason but I feel it would be futile, because do I need a reason? To me, they epitomise the 80s and if you disagree then why don't you make like a tree and get outta here?


    This tour has been the best. YAY.

  18. LOVE The Princess Bride, and I had definitely had two Cabbage Patch Dolls of my own when I was a kid. Lol.

  19. I think my most hated thing about the 80s was the big hair! Mostly because I embraced that fad so and there are lots of completely horrible photos as proof!! I think I loved the movies and language "Gag me with a spoon!" or "Like, oh, my god!" . One of my all-time favorite movies is really cheesy: Valley Girl, I developed a mad crush on Nicholas Cage after seeing that.

    Great post, Shirley! The dress is a keeper.

    Thanks ladies for the awesome giveaway and post. :)

  20. I love this post, it's pretty much amazing, full of nostalgia, and makes me want to have a total 80s day. I have to go with fashion period as the worst thing about the 80s...including/especially hair. I mean, perms were so big that I, someone with incredibly naturally curly hair, threw a fit until I got one and it LOOKED EXACTLY THE SAME but just smelled funny. The best thing about the 80s? Movies! Seriously, I love 80s movies so much. It was a time where you could make ridiculous movies about nothing and they would be wonderful. Can't really pull that off anymore.

  21. I agree with you Shirley, I don't understand shoulder pads either! Why would anyone want to look boxy? But I love the Princess Di dress that you posted and I also think you look lovely in that turquoise lace dress (I think the color is beautiful).

  22. Most loved thing would have to be Tinkerbell nail polish. They had it at all the drug stores and i droves my grandma crazy with the rate i went through bottles. After it dried you could peel it off so i was doing my nails like nine times a day just so i could stick them to things around her house. I'm sure she still loves me though

  23. Do you remember those horrible stonewashed skinnyjeans that were SO tight in the legs that they had to have a zipper at the ankle? And exercise clothes with sweatbands worn EVERYWHERE? Olivia Newton John and Richard Simmons did fashion no favors! That was the worst.

    And the aquamarine lace dress is great!

    The best? The unabashed use of hair as an expression of art. Flock of Seagulls had some mad skills. Color, sculpting, feathering, was amazing. Sure, Axl Rose of the Welcome to the Jungle era is just a teased mess, and having a puff ball for bangs is terrible (and to think I liked it at the time!), but look at these!

  24. The 80's for me is/was Culture Club and Human League. "Don't You Want Me Baby" is great for a slightly 'sipped' karaoke rendition. Even today.
    I DETESTED the shoulder pads. I have naturally wide shoulders and as I can recall, every top, coat, shirt I ever bought in those days came with shoulder pads that were sometimes extremely tricky for a person (me) challenged with needle & thread.
    The make-up. I still recall passing by an in-store make-up session where the artist painted long, wide rouge streaks on his "victim", explaining "do not be afraid of the make-up!". Go figure.

  25. I loved the 80s! The hair, the music! Okay, given that I spent my adolescents in that time period, out in the country, I wasn't really in the know when it came to all the hip stuff, but I do remember my mom's collection of 80s workout VHSs. Sweatin' to the Oldies and any of the ones with women in those shiny spandex, high hipped one pieces. Classic! I used to do those workouts with my mom and I thought I was so cool because I could grapevine better than anyone else. LOL

    Fabulous post! I love reminiscing.

  26. The Princess Bride is my all-time favourite movie ever! True story. I love so much about the 80s - the movies, the hilarious fashion, the music - the toys! *nostalgic sigh*

  27. Shoulder pads were the worst idea.

    I also second The Princess Bride and add another of my favorite movies (both of which came out in 1987, my birth year) A Room with a View.

  28. Movies for sure. LOVE The Princess Bride! :D

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