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!

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!

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?

What I read in July 2019;

The first week of July was a crazy one for me as I read 7 books in one week! I even surprised myself. I did a whole separate post on these books, so check that out below!

Then in July I started reading the Harry Potter series (See previous post), so the majority of my reads from the rest of this month have been from this. I finished the first 4 books in July, and am currently reading the 5th book so I’m sure it’ll be in my August monthly round up haha. I shall be doing a separate blog post on the whole HP books once I have completed the whole series! (My kindle states I have 25 hours left)

The last book I read before starting the HP series was ‘Joyland’ by Stephen king. This was one of the books from my previous month of reading outside of my comfort zone. I always assumed Stephen King books were scary, so I stayed away from this author, despite being greatly intrigued by how ingenious Stephen King seems to be. This had a underlying spookiness to it, but it wasn’t scary at all. (Coming from a complete wimp). It was based around a college aged boy who went to work in a theme park over summer break, where the whole story is based. No spoilers! I actually really enjoyed this book, and would definitely recommend! 4.5/5.

Therefore, I read a total of 12 books this month, which is a decent amount, and puts me further on track to completing 100 books a year. July reads have all been books that are very outside of my usual reading. I do miss my typical YA contemporary book, but aim to finish the Harry Potter series before I started anything new. I flew through the first 4 books, but to my understanding,they get a lot longer from this one? What was your favourite book you read this month?

Distancing myself from my illness; Mental health update

I haven’t posted in 10 days, it feels like a long time since I last logged in. Simply due to being busy. Stress is normally the main contribution to the severity of my mental health. This is particularly annoying as stress is unavoidable in life. It’s not ‘I’m stressed’ that contributes to the decline, but is often due to (what I call) ‘unconscious stress’. This is where there is a event/worry gives you the symptoms of stress despite not actively thinking about said thing.

Surprisingly, despite having a much busier schedule I haven’t been stressed or overwhelmed by the future. My intrusive thoughts have been a lot quieter. It is only recently that I noticed I haven’t had many intrusive thoughts of suicide, and that in itself is a huge achievement. Even when I wasn’t experiencing them, I was often worried they were going to come. So being in a position when it’s not even on my mind is amazing! I think the reduction in intrusive thoughts is the main reason I am doing so well!

I am thriving! I am doing well in my online degree, going to my part time job isn’t a struggle, and everyday life is great! It not only feels GREAT to be doing so well, but it’s even more exciting sharing it with my partner. I am currently doing my degree part time over summer break, but go back to full time once Fall is here, so that should bring a little more anxiety. But I am currently looking forward to delving more into new modules of my degree!

Distancing myself from my mental illness is going well. Not having it the focus of my life, has already improved my views towards my life, and making it easier to plan the immediate future. I can’t see it yet, but maybe one day I could potentially live a life without this?

‘Lolita’ by Vladimir Nabokov; Book Review

I first began to read this book as a young teen, and found the literature too difficult, and therefore put the book down. It wasn’t until this week, nearly a decade later that I decided to pick it up again. This time the language was not difficult to read, like I had expected.

I went into this book with an open mind, briefly knowing what the novel is about, but nothing more. I enjoyed the eloquent language. I was intrigued how the reader knew what horrible crime was occurring, yet the main character didn’t write in a wicked way. He knew of the severity of his actions, and stated many times the wrong of what he was doing.

Lolita herself I found difficult to imagine, as the description of her did not match the image I has composed in my mind. I also didn’t expect her age to be of preteen. The story was saddening, yet I enjoyed the way it was written. I suggest being of mature age before attempting to read this novel, not because of the more advance language but due to the nature of paedophilia.

I now understand why everyone adores this book, and I too agree everyone needs to read this book. Have you read this well known book? I’d definitely recommend to all adults! It is an average length book, but I read in just one day as I didn’t want to stop reading. I’d give ‘Lolita’ 5/5.

I read 7 books this week? I.e; 7 mini book reviews

I may have lied a little bit in the title… as technically I have only finished 6, and am reading the 7th currently haha. Just to point out, I don’t always read the same amount of books each month, it all depends how much I get into reading. If you read my last post you’ll know I am using this month to read books outside of my comfort zone. Therefore, these books I am going to share are not typical ‘Flower in the brain’ books.

The first book I read last week was ‘The Light Between Oceans’ by M.L. Stedman. My last book post was a review of this novel. You can read it here at; https://flowersinthebrain.blog/2019/07/15/the-light-between-oceans-book-review/

I just finished ‘They Both Die At The End’ by Adam Silvera. I was pleasantly surprised by this book. I’m not sure I would have picked this book up by the blurb, but I really enjoyed it, It contains a lot of sadness, and I did cry a few times. It is about getting a call knowing you are going to die in the next 24hours. I would class it as a romantic fiction too, Definitely my favourite book by this author.

‘One of Us is Lying’ by Karen M. McManus is a little on the cheat side, as it is a YA book, but the mystery part would have stopped me picking this us, and I do not like ‘scary’ things haha. This book wasn’t scary in the slightest, which proves to not judge a book by it’s cover. (which I am guilty of) This turned out to be a typical YA book, which meant I loved it! I particularly enjoyed how the chapters were split between all the characters. It was a mystery, which I figured about before finishing, but still found it enjoyable. (sorry,no spoilers). I’d give this a high rating of 4.5/5

Next, I read ‘The Elephant Tree’ by R.D. Ronald, which was very much outside of my usual book choice. I find the first half of this book slow and repetitive, the last quarter engaged me most. This book was a little too gruesome for me, it is surrounded with heavy drugs and violence. So would not recommend for younger readers, or those like me who dislike violence. I’m glad I read something different, but am not sure I would recommend this one.

A very quick read by Paul Kalanithi; ‘When breath becomes air’. Again, a book I really enjoyed. It followed the life of a neurosurgeon who had been diagnosed with cancer. It reminded me of the book ‘This is going to hurt’. A short, but enjoyable read, that I think everyone should read!

My favourite book this week was ‘Lolita’ by Vladimir Nabokov. I have written a separate post to review this book. So watch out, as it’ll most likely be the next thing posted on my blog.

I am currently reading ‘Joyland’ by Stephen King. This is a huge ‘stepping into new territory’ moment, one of which I’m a little afraid. Stephen King is an author I am very intrigued by, yet have always been too afraid to pick up. I am only 50 pages in, and so far I am not petrified haha. I will update once I have read a little more.