[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] January Reading!

I hope everyone is excited for the new year and a new month!

This month, there was no theme, and as such our book choices for next month are:

I hope you all like the choices and find one that you would like to pick up! I’m excited for a new month of reading.

My Top 17 Reads of the Year

Ironically, I’ve only managed to finish 17 books this year (I’m discounting all books related to my MA which I’ve read this year), and this is how I would place them in terms of favourite. Most of these weren’t published this year, but I hope you enjoy it either way!

17) Red Phoenix by Larry Bond

16) Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman

15) I Am Watching You by Teresa Driscoll

14) The Christmas Forest by Rebecca Boxall

13) That’s Not What Happened by Kody Keplinger

12) And The Ocean Was Our Sky by Patrick Ness

11) Whistle in the Dark by Emma Healey

10) The Shining by Stephen King

9) Born Lippy: How To Do Female by Jo Brand

8) The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson

7) The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

6) Release by Patrick Ness

5) The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

4) 1984 by George Orwell

3) House Of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski

2) Becoming by Michelle Obama

1) The Travelling Cat Chronicles by Hiro Arikawa

 

This was potentially the hardest list I’ve done this year, it was so hard to choose and I moved a few of them around a lot! It was especially difficult between 2 and 1, but The Travelling Cat Chronicles was an amazing novel, and it really touched me and a book I still think about today. Becoming is an equally amazing memoir, and I love Michelle Obama. The choice was so hard!

What’s your favourite books that you’ve read this year? Let me know in the comments!

When Do You Decide To Give Up A Book?

This is a hard question for me. I don’t like not finishing a book, but there are occasions when you just have to stop.

This could be for a number of reasons. Perhaps the biggest reason is you just aren’t getting along with the novel you have decided to pick up.

I hate giving up a book, I always carry on thinking ‘I’ll like it soon’, ‘it’ll get better, I just have to find that part’, and sometimes, it’s not even the books fault. I’ve picked it up, thought it sounded really good, the book is written wonderfully and it’s masterful at the tale it’s presenting, but it’s just not working for me.

And that makes me feel guilty.

So, how much of a book do you read before you decide it’s probably not going to ever work for you?

I’m trying to start a 25% rule, and if I’m still not getting along with a book by a quarter of the way through, then I’m probably never going to like it.

Do you have a rule? Or do you power through to the very end?

Let me know what you think!

[Book Club] First Week!

So, the first week of this month’s reading is officially over!

How have you been enjoying?

I’m going to admit to being very bad and I haven’t started reading any of them yet. I’ve been super busy lately, but I’m going to start tomorrow!

If you’d like a refresh of what we’re reading, you can find out here.

Happy reading everyone!

[Book Review] The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson

the haunting of hill house

The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson is a classic horror novel. Following the story of four adults as they plan to spend the summer in reclusive and unmentionable Hill House, the occupants soon learn the reason why no one goes there.

Despite the novel being published originally in 1959, I have not yet read it, but it has always been a book I’ve wanted to read.

The novel lives up to its hype, and is truly scary. I found there were moments where Jackson’s writing got under my skin and left me scared, leading me to put the novel down for the moment to calm down. It has been a long time since I’ve read a novel that’s affected me in such a way.

The writing style of the novel is interesting, at times there are more than one conversation going on, particularly when it comes to Mrs Dudley, as she parrots back her rules whilst other characters talk around her. It gives the sections a feeling of her not being there, adding to the haunting element of the tale.

Eleanor is also an interesting character, especially as she begins to ‘feel’ the house and gives the house an almost lifelike description.

This book is definitely one I would recommend for those who are interested in a good scary story. Shirley Jackson crafts a ghost story that gets under your skin and wanting to read more despite the fear you’re feeling.

[Book Review] Born Lippy by Jo Brand

born lippy

Born Lippy: How to do female by Jo Brand is hard to categorise. Filed under Philosophy on Amazon, the book can also be seen as somewhat of a self-help book, too.

For those of you who don’t know who Jo Brand is, she is a comedian, and her biography can be found here.

I have personally never read anything by Jo Brand before, but I have seen her on television occasionally, and was somewhat in the know of what her personality is like.

Born Lippy is insightful in it’s own ways, as Brand discusses growing up and feminism. It’s a book that reads loud, but that doesn’t deter from the message that Brand is trying to portray.

Set out in different segments on how to deal with certain situations, Jo Brand is giving her own experiences and her own advice on things she has done and would like to have changed. The message of the book is simple, but also needed, look after yourself, and know how to do it well.

The only drawback for me, personally, were a few grammatical and spelling errors in the book which could have been picked up by the editor before it went into publication. Some of them I couldn’t tell if it was slang and colloquial, but there were definitely a few errors in there.

Overall, it was good easy read, funny at the right moments. I would definitely recommend if you are looking for a bit of fun, and a different look at the way feminism is viewed today.