[Book Review] American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis

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I find it difficult to summarise American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis. On the surface, it’s about Patrick Bateman who is part of the Upper Class elite of Wall Street who violently kills women.

The novel is grotesque, and there were a few scenes that left me wondering why I was even reading the book. Which is why I find writing this review especially difficult. I’m torn on how I rate this book.

It’s satirical, poking fun at the elite and their way of life. I’d never even heard of some of the designers name dropped in this novel, and the fascination with Donald Trump is profound when reading it now.

But, I found myself questioning a lot of things that happened. There were many scenes where Patrick would openly admit to his violent thoughts and things that he’d done, and the conversation would continue as if he hadn’t said anything. There was a section where after admitting to killing Paul Owen, it turns out that Paul Owen is in fact not dead, which lead me to wonder if Patrick Bateman had even killed anyone at all. Was it all just a fantasy? Had any of this actually happened?

No one certainly looked for the women he murdered. Or is it the point that these women were replaceable, and no one would go looking for them?

Alas, it is safe to say that the book left me with more questions than it did answer any.

Overall, I’m not sure what my stance is on the novel. I definitely didn’t dislike it, but I’m not quite sure I enjoyed the book either. It was intriguing and downright disgusting in some parts. It was disorientating and dissociative, which from my perspective was the intention of the novel.

It’s a novel I would recommend lightly, and is definitely not for the faint of heart.

On this occasion, I am unsure. But, perhaps, only time will tell where my viewpoint on the novel stands, and perhaps demands a revisit to truly uncover all the goings on of Patrick Bateman.

[Book Club] February Suggestions!

Hello!

February is soon upon us, and that means a new reading month!

If you have any suggestions for what you’d like to read next month, let me know in the comments below and we’ll read it!

Personally, I’d really like to get stuck into The Binding by Bridget Collins, it sounds really good.

February is going to be an exciting month, so let’s get some exciting books in.

[Book Review] Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

 

eleanor oliphantEleanor Oliphant is 30 years old, and she has fallen in love. With the front man of a band.

This is the beginning of what turns out to be a very poignant story about finding friends, exploring yourself and dealing with the past. Eleanor is at first viewed as an outsider, someone who nobody talks to and nobody wants to talk to, until she meets Raymond and they begin to form a friendship.

If I’m being very honest, I did not like the book at first. I’d seen all the hype and honestly began to wonder what all the fuss was about, but something made me want to keep going.

This was my slow descent into exploring Eleanor and her life. I’m now glad to say I stuck with it until the end, as it won me over. I felt for a while that I would stick with second-lead syndrome and Raymond would be the most likeable character, but then Eleanor began to unravel, and I began to really like the way she spoke and the way she viewed the world. She challenged my own view of the world, and the way she approaches life.

Overall, I rather enjoyed Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine. Honeyman writes simply, but effectively, and definitely knows how to draw the reader in. My advice to the new reader would be, if you’re only just starting out and not enjoying, definitely stick with it. It’s definitely worth it to get to the end and discover that the pay-off is worth it.

Or at least it had been for me.

Have you read Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine? Let me know in the comments what you thought!

[Book Review] We Need To Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver

we need to talk about Kevin.jpgWe Need To Talk About Kevin is on the surface a gut-wrenching story about Kevin who kills 9 people in a school shooting. On a deeper level, the novel is about a mother’s love and if a mother’s love can influence a person’s upbringing.

I went into reading this novel with my eyes open, I knew it was going to be a tough read, but even as I finished the novel, the novel continued to display it’s perplexities and harshness.

The novel follows a sequence of letters from Eva to her husband Franklin as she recounts Kevin’s childhood to the present. The novel is a mammoth tale, starting from how it all began, from Eva’s and Kevin’s shaky start as he is born, to moments throughout his childhood that leave the reader questioning.

This novel for me left me feeling that it was perhaps a little too real. The novel is psychologically stimulating, as we question with Eva whether Kevin could have done that, or if Eva had been a different kind of mother would Kevin had still continued on the path he chose. The novel is interesting in the way it makes you question everything, Eva is always so certain of the things that Kevin has done, and despite not ever mentioning Kevin’s mental health, it does leave you questioning. Kevin is distant, he dissociates, and from Eva’s retellings comes across as if everything is an act.

But, how much of this is Eva? We rely on Eva to tell Kevin’s story, and how do we, as the reader, know that we are not being influenced by Eva’s experiences?

Overall, I enjoyed reading this novel. I found myself questioning everything at every turn, wondering if Kevin had done what Eva thought. Lionel Shriver has written a poignant story of a mother’s love, and how far would a mother go for her child, and questions a person’s reaction and how they place blame on others.

It is definitely a book I would recommend, and one that I will perhaps read more than once, as I’m sure throughout my reading, I have potentially missed quite a lot of nuances that are waiting to be picked up.

Have you read We Need To Talk About Kevin? Let me know in the comments!

[Book Club] Second Week!

It’s the second week of this month’s book club!

How is everyone doing? I’ve actually managed to finish one book on the list, and I might pick up another. The review is set up and scheduled ready to go on the 31st.

I hope everyone else is having as much fun with this month’s list as I am. Let’s make January that awesome reading month!

If you haven’t started on a book, but would like to, you can find our list for this month here. We’re themeless this month!

[Book Club] First Week!

Wow, the first week is already over! How quick is that going?

How are you finding your chosen book? I’ve gone with Milkman by Anna Burns, and it’s so intriguing so far. I’m really enjoying the stylistic choices that have gone into it so far.

What have you chosen to read? If you haven’t yet, there’s still time to choose and get stuck into a good book. You can find this months books here!

Happy Reading, everyone!

Happy New Year!

Let me preemptively wish everyone a Happy New Year! We’re heading into a new year, and this leads to a new chapter and a new challenge.

As I have now completed my studies (or hello, TEFL Course!), I’m going to put a little more effort into my reading. I want to be better read, and a better reviewer.

So, I’m setting myself a few challenges, of which you are welcome to join!

The first challenge:

Book Riot posted their annual Read Harder Challenge, I will be attempting this challenge throughout 2019. I’ll try and separate Book Club from Book Challenge, but some crossing’s over may happen.

I’m also setting myself a goal of reading 50 books this year. This may not seem like a lot to some of you avid readers out there, but considering I only read some 21 books this year, this is going to be a challenge for me. I used to read all the time, and I love reading, but I’ve been so snowed under with reading for courses, that reading for pleasure has slipped to the wayside and reading books quickly is not a thing I am currently able to do.

Now that we’ve got the challenges out of the way, let’s see some stats!

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This blog has managed to get 1,032 views from 554 visitors with 499 likes and 47 comments. How awesome is that?

My top blog post was:

My Book Review on Teresa Driscoll’s I Am Watching You!

This review earned 71 views! How exciting!

Hopefully, 2019 will be just as exciting a year as 2018 will be. Though, with 50 books to read, I can already see me madly trying to catch up as the year progresses. Hopefully you’ll all like to stick around and see how it goes!

Happy New Year, everyone!