Books

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck; Book micro review

I recently decided to delve into the world of classic fiction. All the books I feel everyone should read in their life time. I can’t believe I had never read Of mice and men. Especially as lot’s of people seem to be introduced to it when in highschool.

Firstly, it is a very short read. Easily read in one sitting, although I read it over two days. It wasn’t a difficult read, but still displayed beautiful language.

I only seemed to connect to the two main characters, Lennie and and George. None of the other characters seemed to stay in my mind. There is only one female character in this book, who I don’t think was named. George and Lennie are friends in the era of the great depression, both of whom are migrant ranch workers. Lennie displays some type of mental disability, and George has always looked out for him. You can clearly see the protectiveness George has over Lennie, and the commitment that they share.

I’ll try to avoid spoilers. The ending of the book really took me by surprise. To summarise in one word; EMOTIONAL.

I can’t believe this is the first time I’ve read Of mice and men. I feel it’s a book all ages could read, pre teen aswell as adults. It’s a short and emotional read, a classic that everyone needs to read at least once. A solid 4.5/5 from me!

Books

TEN SHORT STORIES by Roald Dahl; Book review

I’m writing this review on a train journey,instantly after finishing the stories, of which I flew through. Roald Dahl is my favourite childrens authtor, and upon finding out he also wrote adult books, I was very excited to delve into them.

I have read very few short stories, so went into this book open minded. Some of the stories were 10 pages long,others only 3. I enjoyed how you could read an entire story in just a few minutes. The aspect I enjoyed most about these short stories in the particular were the endings, often witty and clever. Stories you want to share with others mid conversation.

There is an underlying darkness to ending of each story, which really adds another element, and often takes you by surprise. My favorite of the stories was ‘Parson’s pleasure’. The stories are too short to give you any details without spoilers..

Roald Dahl is an author I adore, and this collection of stories just emphasizes that. I love the language used, the attention to detail , the way the stories unfold. I was hesitate to read some of his books not targeted for children and I didn’t want my opinion tarnished. (not that it could) This book bought me so much joy.

I definitely recommend this book to all ages and genre lovers. I found this book for 30 cent in thrift store! I adore my copy, a vintage style and the pages are tinted with age. Oh so beautiful! If you have read my post on my book minimalism, you will understand how significent it is for me to keep this book on my shelf.

Definitely a 10/10 read!

Books

Ostrich boys by Keith Gray; Book review.

I picked this book up on a whim in a thrift store, as the description caught my attention; ‘It’s not really kidnapping, is it? He’d have to be alive for it to be proper kidnapping.’ The books was 30cent a piece so I picked up 13 in total… I’ll be re-donating this one now I have finished it. I saw the sticker on the front saying it was shortlisted for a few different book awards. I assumed it was a YA, and it technically is, but the younger side of teenager, I’d say 11+. As I am an adult I found this book quite childish, I still thoroughly enjoyed it, but understand I am not the target audience.

The language flowed well, it was very easy to read. I finished this book in one day. My favorite aspect of the book is the emotion. The 3 main characters, all 15 year old boys have lost their best friend. After attending the funeral, which they didn’t feel reflected their best friend Ross’s life, they decided to take matters into their own hands, taking the urn containing Ross to a little village called Ross in Scotland, to give him the send off he deserves.

Each character had different opinions on what they set out to do, although they were all in agreement to give Ross the send off he would have wanted. Upon finding out the death may not have been accidental, they all responded in different ways. The 3 best friends are experiencing grief differently, and I liked the difference each character bought. They fall out, imagine how hard it would be losing your best friend? I think all the characters are trying their best to ‘keep themselves together’. I didn’t expect the ending, but I enjoyed the quietness it bought. (no spoilers here, sorry!)

I feel I was a little harsh calling this book childish at the start of the review. It encountered some challenging life events, that these teenagers had to go through. I read this book in one day, I enjoyed it! (I think I’m just being a little harsh on myself for reading ‘easier’ books).

I would give this book 3.5/5, and would definitely recommend picking it up if you enjoy YA. (especially if you are a teen!)

Books

What I read in September 2019

I had a very busy September, and didn’t record on paper what I read (I’ve never forgotten to do this before) therefore have missed a couple books from this list. This month I read all physical books apart from HP (I have the series on my kindle). Enough rambling, the first book I read this month was;

  1. Harry Potter and the half blood prince: I’m sure you’ll know by now that I am only just reading/watching the HP series as an adult.. I actually saw the movie before reading this one, thus flew through this book as I didn’t quite need the same level of attention. I much preferred the book to the movie, as they missed so much out! This is so far one of my favorite HP books. Only one more to go!
  2. The kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini: This is by far the best book I read in September. I’ve had this book on my TBR for years, and can’t believe I waited this long to read it. The story is very emotional, and some may find aspects difficult to read. I would recommend this book to everyone!
  3. Home girl by Alex Wheatle: I picked this book up at the library on a whim. I really enjoy books based in foster care, and thus this book appealed to me. It was an easy read, found in the YA section, but a little young for me. I still really enjoyed the story, and how it included many important topics.
  4. The shadow of the wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón: Too many words to fit on here, separate blog post coming!
  5. I also read a YA book about a mum with agoraphobia, and her son also doesn’t leave the house, until one day he decides to explore. They name rooms in the house after cities. For example, the kitchen being Paris. When exploring the boy meets another boy with the same name. I’ve googled and cannot find the book anywhere. If anyone knows what I’m trying to explain,please comment! Very odd for me to not write my books down…
  6. I’m now writing this in October and have finally finished the last Harry Potter book, so expect a blog on my opinions of reading HP for the first time!
Books

Dealing with book stress?/TBR pressure

If you’re anything like me, your TBR (to be read) is incredibly long, and no matter how many books you read, the list never gets smaller. My TBR is a never ending list, which can really overwhelm me. I am always finding new books I want to read. Despite reading a hundred books a year, I’ll never run out of content to read. I don’t follow any reading challenges, or plan what I’m going to read next. I simply choose my books as and when I feel like it.

My TBR list is very long, despite never actively looking for books. I simply see books in book stores/library, see reviews on blogs or get recommended by others. I think I would be very overwhelmed if I looked for more, as my TBR would multiple! Do you actively search for books, or do you read as and when you see something that catches your eye? I’m interested to see,as I would love to be one of those people who follow new releases or book challenges.

The truth? I rarely look at my TBR, as I don’t want to overwhelm myself. The only time I look at my list is when I am adding a new book, or run out of unread books on my shelf/kindle. It is so satisfying when I return to my list and noticed I can cross of read books without even realizing they were on my TBR.

Thus, my trick to not become stressed with all the books I want to read? I don’t put the pressure on myself to read X,Y&Z. I simply pick up whatever book I desire. This is why I don’t do many #gifted book reviews, as the pressure to finish and enjoy the book takes part of the enjoyment out for me. (Unless it is a book I think I will be passionate about/really enjoy.)

I am a very organised person, and use to plan exactly what and when I would read. Switching genres and introducing intellectual challenging books. I would force myself to finish books I wasn’t particular enjoying, because I HAD to tick them off my list. (mental health even affected my reading). I would see what books were popular and felt the pressure to read them instantly. (Before I started posting on my blog).

Concluding that reading is so personal. Everyone has different reading tastes, thus will not enjoy the same books. THIS IS OKAY. Simply read and add books to your TBR that YOU will enjoy. It sounds so easy, and it may be for you. But for me, this was a difficult hurdle to overcome. Reading is a hobby, a way to relax. My escapism.

Books

Roald Dahl Day 2019

Roald Dahl is a very famous children’s author who I adore. My all time favourite book is written by Dahl; ‘Matilda’ which is the theme this time. The 13th September 2019 is Roald Dahl! A day to celebrate all the wonderful characters and work that he put into the world. I could not leave today without writing at least a few lines. Roald Dahl will always have a special place in my heart as an author!

Here is my top books written by Dahl:

  1. Matilda! A story I adore, and relate to the character in ways, especially being the only book nerd in the family! There is so many fab characters in this story alone! Miss Honey for starters!
  2. The BFG! I must have read this book as a young child, but reread it a few years ago as a young adult, and adored it! I love the BFG and Sophie! My favourite thing about this story is the language. ‘Hopscotchy’ ‘Whizzpopping’
  3. Boy! This is a book written in Dahl persective as a child. It is full of hilarious stories, that will make you giggle out loud!
  4. Charlie and The Chocolate factory! I remember getting this book inside an easter egg as a young child. (What happened to getting books inside eggs and cereal??) I feel in love, and after watching the movies too. It is such a creative story!

I have read all of Roald Dahl’s children books, and am going to add the adult books that I haven’t read yet to my TBR. He is one of my favourite authors, and am intrigued which book is your favourite? One day in the near future I hope to visit the Roald Dahl museum, although it is a long way away. Happy Reading!

Books

September TBR/ What I’m currently reading

This is what I am planning to read in September 2019:

  • Half blood prince; I am nearer the end of my finishing the entire Harry Potter collection, for the first time in my life. I am trying to stay quiet on my views, and shall do a whole collection view once I have completed the series. I have 3/4 of the way in this book, so will probably finish this evening
  • The deathly hallows; The final Harry Potter book that I need to read!
  • Tender by Eve Ainsworth; I am looking forward to reading a book that isn’t fantasy, and thought this would be a quick easy read to begin with. (If you’ve read my blog then you’ll know I am not a fantasy fan at all)
  • Goodbye Days by Jennifer Zentnez; I saw this when browsing my local libraries YA section, and had never heard of it.
  • Home girl by Alex Wheatle; This book is about a teenage girl in foster care. I’ve read a lot of fiction on this subject from the carers point of view, thus thought this book would be interesting.
  • To kill a mocking bird by Harper Lee; I have read this before, but cannot remember it at all. Although I am looking forward to going back to read my favourite genre. I too am looking forward to including more classics into my monthly reads.
  • Go set a watchman by Harper Lee; I have never read this book despite having it on my TBR for a long time. I shall read this directly after the above book.

I have set myself 7 books to read this month, this is a reachable target for me considering I have a busy September planned. What is one book you are planning to read this month?