Books

January Wrap Up 2020

I read 12 books in January, and have already started book 13 but don’t think I’ll be able to finish before the end of the day, so it’ll be in February’s wrap up! I am very happy with the amount I read this month, and if I have a low month hopefully this month will make up for it. I’m on target for 100 books a year! I read some great books this month, and can’t wait for next month! What was your favorite book of January?

  • To kill a mocking bird: I couldn’t believe I had never properly read this book, and I’m so glad I finally got around to it! I have a separate post on this, which I’ll link at the end! 4.5/5
  • Alice in wonderland: I absolutely love the movie, so decided to give the book a read,and I adored it! I truly felt I had fallen into a wonderland, ending up very confused but very fascinated and humored! I know it’s technically for children, but I still think it’s a great read for adults too! 4/5
  • Alice through the looking glass: I wasn’t aware that there was a 2nd story, so was even more intrigued to read this one. It had a little more structure than the first, but still ultimately mind boggling! I think I even prefer this one to the first! 4.5/5
  • Innocent by Cathy Glass: Cathy Glass will always be one of my favorite authors, I have read all 30 or so books she has! They are all very similar in structure, in that it is fiction with Cathy being a foster carer, and each book is about one of the children in her care. I enjoyed ‘Innocent’ as much as her other books. I would recommend only for adults, as well as the potential trigger warnings! 4/5
  • A good girls guide to murder: This is a YA book that I found in a thrift store for 30 cent and had no expectations going in, I’d never even heard of it! It was very much YA if that makes sense? but it was a good read, and i enjoyed the depth of characters! definitely recommend if you love YA and crime! 3.5/5
  • Danny the champion of the world by Roald Dahl: Roald Dahl will always have a special place in my heart as I grew up surrounding by his work! Somehow along the way I missed this one, and of course I had to read it! It was hilarious and warming just how all Roald Dahl’s work is! 5/5.
  • Finding Stevie by Cathy Glass: Another foster care book about a teenage boy called Stevie whom is struggling with his gender identity. This book bought up important topics, and would be great for the older generation of adults who don’t have as much knowledge. I’m use to reading about children, so found the adult perspective less … ( can’t think of the right word?) 2.5/5
  • The words that fly between us: I picked this up in the library when I had some time to spare in the library, I really liked the title. It was in the YA section, but felt targeted to a younger audience. I read it in one sitting, but didn’t stand out to me. 2/5.
  • We are all completely beside ourselves: I tried reading this book a few years ago but gave up after a few chapters, I had it on my shelf so decided to pick it up one last time. I finished it this time! It was intrigued by the content of the story and wanted to find out what happened but felt it slow and difficult to get hooked, this may be the writing style? I’m not sure? 3/5
  • When God was a rabbit: Again I found this at a thrift store for 30 cent and was intrigued by the title. This is my least favorite book of the year, it lacked a story line and was just a bit drab… Not many words on this, sorry! 1/5
  • Silent boy by Torey Hayden: This is an author who writes fiction of her stories as a special ed psychologist and I read every book. This teenage boy in the story has selective mutism, and the change the boy has incredible. I don’t want to give any spoilers, but I was interested the whole way through out, and Torey makes me want to go into this field of work! 4.5/5
  • Lost child by Torey Hayden: Torey hasn’t released any books recently, and suddenly came out with a new one in 2019, as soon as I found out I ordered straight from prime. I was so excited to delve into the world of Torey again, and this book was no exception. I should put a huge TW on these books, as most have child sexual abuse in. 4/5

Books

My top books of the decade (2010-2020)

I decided to do this post, purely so I can look back in the future. I can’t remember exactly when I read these books, but they’ve definitely been in the past 10 years. This decade I read mostly YA books! This list isn’t in order, but are the most memorable books I’ve read in the decade.

  1. Flowers in the attic by Virginia Andrews. I read this at the start of the decade, but still remains my favorite book of all time. I’ve got a post dedicated to reviewing this so I’ll link that below if you want to read why I love it so much. The sequel is good, but definitely not in my top of the decade.
  2. Catcher in the Rye by J.D.Salinger. I read this at the start of the decade too, and I was the perfect age to read this book. This book also remains in my top 10 reads of all time! I think my age played a huge role in that, as I related a lot. I want to reread it again soon to see how it differs at this age. This is a book everyone should read!
  3. It’s kind of a funny story by Ned Vizzini. This is a great book about mental illness, and is an easy read for those wanting an introduction to books about this genre. It’s an easy read made for teens but includes some important points on depression whilst still having humor. The movie is also great!
  4. All the little lights by Jamie Mcguire. I went into this book without any expectations but I came out adoring it. The characters had such unique aspects that I was addicted. I didn’t expect this book to make the top, but it definitely does!
  5. When elephants fly by Nancy Richardson. This made it into my top books of 2018 post. I felt so close to Swifty the elephant in this story, and still often think of her… I never thought I would be this connected to a fictional animal!
  6. The book theif by Markus Zusak. I think this book will forever remain in my top favourite. It’s so unique! Written by death? This is all I need to say… Go and read now if you haven’t!
  7. My heart and other black holes by Jasmine Warga. I read this book when I was really struggling with my mental health, and thus has stuck with me. It’s a YA book about suicide, and is a huge trigger if you’re struggling. Despite this, I didn’t predict the scenarios of the book, and read it in one sitting. I want to reread this whilst I’m well to see how it differs.
  8. Stolen by Lucy Christopher. I read this as a teen, and absolutely began my love for YA books. I’ve read this book so many times. I don’t relate to the characters, yet they are both unique in such different ways. It is a quick read, and is in my top YA picks.
  9. We were liars by E. Lockhart. I had to read this book twice as I was confused the first time. There is so much depth to this book. Another YA pick, which has won many awards, and I can understand why!
  10. The Harry Potter series. I dislike any type of fantasy, but at the end of 2019 I decided to try and see what all the hype is about… If you’ve read my posts, you’ll know how significant this is. I still need to publish my review on this… (too much pressure)
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!

Creative segment

Questions from my readers?? Leave in comments.

I often get questions on my posts and emails so thought I would compile them altogether and do a ‘Q&A’ style blog post. (Probably put out next week)

Leave your question in the comments and you’ll get a shout-out when I put the post out. (Please state if you don’t want this,and I’ll put the comment as anonymous)

Questions can include anything!! Whether they are about me personally/mental health,book related,random or advice! I’m open to literally anything! (Helps that my blog is anonymous hehe)

I’ll be deleting this post after a little while, and keeping note of the questions. You can also email if you prefer.

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!