WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme hosted by Taking on a World of Words. This meme involves answering three questions. What are you currently reading? What did you recently finish reading? What do you think you’re going to read next? Leave links to your WWW Wednesday posts in the comments below!

What are you currently reading?

I am currently reading Whispers Underground by Ben Aaronovitch. I picked up the first three books in the Peter Grant series a few weeks ago in a charity shop as I’d heard really good things and I’m so glad I did. Whispers Underground is the third book in the series and I’m loving it so far and I can’t wait to read the rest of the books to see how the story progresses. I’ll talk more about this series in my wrap up so if you’re interested in my thoughts check that out at the end of September!

What did you recently finish reading?

I recently finished Moon Over Soho by Ben Aaronovitch which is the second book in the Peter Grant series. Again I really liked it but not as much as I liked the first book to be honest, the plot wasn’t quite as interesting to me personally. It was still a pretty good book though and made me want to continue on with the series, especially with how it left off.

What do you think you’re going to read next?

I’ve ordered but don’t yet have the fourth book in the Peter Grant series so until then I think I might read An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir as I own the first two books in that series and haven’t started it yet. I love epic fantasy novels so I expect I’m going to love this just as much as everybody else seems to!

Thanks for reading! 🙂

 

REVIEW – The Girls by Emma Cline

the-girls-by-emma-clineThe Girls By Emma Cline
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆ | 4 Star Rating
Goodreads | Book Depository | Author’s Site
Published by Penguin Random House – Out Now! 
This book was purchased with my own money.


Synopsis

California. The summer of 1969. In the dying days of a floundering counter-culture a young girl is unwittingly caught up in unthinkable violence, and a decision made at this moment, on the cusp of adulthood, will shape her life….

Evie Boyd is desperate to be noticed. In the summer of 1969, empty days stretch out under the California sun. The smell of honeysuckle thickens the air and the sidewalks radiate heat.

Until she sees them. The snatch of cold laughter. Hair, long and uncombed. Dirty dresses skimming the tops of thighs. Cheap rings like a second set of knuckles. The girls.

And at the centre, Russell. Russell and the ranch, down a long dirt track and deep in the hills. Incense and clumsily strummed chords. Rumours of sex, frenzied gatherings, teen runaways.

Was there a warning, a sign of things to come? Or is Evie already too enthralled by the girls to see that her life is about to be changed forever.

My Thoughts

I picked this book up randomly on a shopping trip one day and I went into it completely blind and I’m so glad I did. This book was such an amazing ride and really impacted the way I think about some things. The incidents written about in this book seem somewhat based on the Manson family and the murders they committed, the musical cult leader and the ranch and other things are pretty identical to the real events. It almost feels like Emma Cline created a character to insert into the Manson family to act as a fly on the wall. Evie, our protagonist is an amazing character, flawed and sometimes unlikable but underneath it all a decent person who is desperate for some form of affection which leads her to getting involved with a group she wouldn’t normally associate with. She is initially drawn in by Suzanne, a wild, carefree girl who Evie instantly falls in love with and in some aspects you can understand why. Suzanne is Evie’s complete opposite in some aspects, she’s wild, carefrree and doing what she wants with her life without the societal expectations and responsibilities that bind Evie.. Emma Cline perfectly describes the pull that Evie feels from this unique group of people who seem to want her to be a part of them, it’s like a really messed up family and the tight familial bond is something Evie has always wanted.

The cast of characters is like those in most books in that they’re varied and interesting but they come with a slightly sinister twist as from the beginning you know what they are capable of doing and you can’t quite get attached to them because of this despite growing to like them. It was interesting to read about the different relationships between the members themselves and also their relationships with Russell, their leader. Some of the characters really intrigued me such as Roos and her son and I wish we were able to find out more about them as individuals before they were captured under Russell’s spell. The Girls is one of those books where you just want to reach into the pages and snap them all out of it as you can see how easily they’re being manipulated whilst they’re unable to. I also enjoyed the snippets of older Evie as it gives the reader a chance to understand how much Evie was changed by the cult and how it changed her life forever.

I was slightly disappointed with the ending though which is why I gave it 4 stars as I really wanted something to resolve the plot or at least give Evie some closure. Despite this I did really enjoy this book and Emma Cline’s writing is addictive and engrossing, I’ll definitely pick up whatever she writes in the future!

Thanks for reading! 🙂

August Wrap Up

I’ve finally have time to post my August wrap up! I’ve been a little busy recently (mainly because of the new Fallout 4 DLC’s) so I’m posting this a little late which I hope is okay. Anyway last month I managed to read 11 books which is pretty good for me especially as I only managed to read 1 the month before. I’ve just been reading a lot more than I normally do recently so I’m hoping to keep reading this way during September as well. So! The books I read during August were –

Timeless by Gail Carriger ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

A great end to a great series! I really enjoyed this book as it explored Alexia’s relationships with her new family and also her discovering some things about her past family. I also liked how it explored some of the side characters such as Biffy and Ivy as I love them both. I don’t want to say much in case I spoil it but I definitely recommend picking this book up! I can’t wait to start reading the spin off books in the Finishing School series.

The Girls by Emma Cline ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

I’m actually going to be posting a full review of this book soon!  I loved it though and definitely recommend it but I’ll talk about my thoughts more in my review.

Monstress Volume 1  by Marjorie Lu ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆ (3.5)

Monstress was great but slightly confusing, like most graphic novels it drops you in at the deep end and it sometimes left me wondering what was going on. It had a really interesting epic fantasy plot with an amazing female character but sometimes the actual backstory wasn’t easy to follow. The art was absolutely beautiful though and I did really enjoy it. I’ll probably pick up the next volume once it comes out.

The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N. K. Jemisin  ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

This book was phenomenal! The writing was beautiful and the plot flowed so beautifully and I couldn’t stop reading once I started. The main protagonist, Yeine was such a fascinating, strong character and her transition from the leader of a small settlement to heiress to the king was really interesting to read about. I loved Jemisin’s inclusion of the gods, the world and backstory she built was so intricately designed that I had to keep reading until I found out what happened. I also loved the poly relationship inclusion too, there should be way more in fiction. I ordered the second book as soon as I finished this one and I can’t wait to read it!

Daughter of the Forest by Juliette Marillier  ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

After reading The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms I was in the mood for more fantasy so I picked up Daughter of the Forest as it seems to be a staple in all of the epic fantasy recommendation lists I’ve read and I know why. It’s exactly what you’d expect out of an epic fantasy book, great world building, interesting characters and a compelling plot. As it’s a retelling of  ‘The Six Swans’ fairy tale it had a certain magical and homely atmosphere to it which I loved.

Far From You by Tess Sharpe  ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

This was such an amazing book! Definitely a new favourite! It’s such an intriguing mystery about a girl, Sophie who is just leaving rehab and is on a mission to solve a murder she was witness to. I loved how it flicked from current events to the past to reveal what lead up to each moment and it’s so genuinely fascinating. I thought Sophie’s relationship with Mina was really heart wrenching and was glad the author didn’t act as if Sophie wasn’t affected by what had happened and actually dealt with the emotional aftermath. I really loved it and the mystery of who the killer was left me gripped to the end.

Grimspace by Ann Aguirre ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

I was really craving a great science fiction book and I’m so glad I chose this to read. I liked the main character, Sirantha a lot and I thought her power, the ability to jump through ‘grimspace’ was really unique and created a lot of interesting situations. Sirantha is struggling after her ship crash lands leaving everybody, including her boyfriend, dead and she absolutely has no memory of it. Once arrested for this crash she is then freed by a group of people who, like the her previous employers want to use her for their own means. I just found this book really fun and compelling, I loved all of the characters and though I wasn’t such a huge fan of the romance I still couldn’t stop reading. I can’t wait to pick up the next book!

Wonder Woman – Love and Murder by Jodi Picoult ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ (2.5)

I picked this up from the library on a whim because I love Wonder Woman but it really didn’t do it for me. It’s always hard to get into comics because of the multiple storylines but this just seemed a lot less coherent than the rest. I felt like WW’s character wasn’t given the writing she deserved and there was to much focus on her relationship, Nemesis rather than the consequences of her previous actions. I’m also kinda sick of the whole pitting great female characters against each other to sell more copies as it really reduces Wonder Woman’s character to someone I can’t recognise. The art is really beautiful though so I guess that’s a selling point!

Tell Me Again How A Crush Should Feel by Sara Farizan  ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

This is such a perfect summer romance read! I needed something cute and fun after reading a lot of dark and sometimes slow build SFF books and this definitely fit the bill. Though it’s sweet and fun it does explore some deeper subjects such as unhealthy relationships whilst dealing with the otherwise normal high school drama. Leila has to deal with a lot, her parents expectations of her, her sexuality and shifting social groups and she’s still such a sweet and funny character despite the hardships she’s been dealt. I also loved her developing relationship which I won’t spoil, I thought it was really raw and real compared to her previous relationship and this book just contained such a great cast of characters that you can’t help but love.

In the Woods by Tana French ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

I’m not normally a huge reader of crime novels but In the Woods left me with a newfound love for the genre. I went into it without knowing what it was really about and I think that made it all the better as most of the plot was a mystery to me. I don’t want to spoil too much but it focuses on the murder investigation of a young girl in a small Irish town.The lead detective, Rob notices the similarities to a missing persons case that he was involved in as a child and tries to search for the answers about his past. The end wasn’t exactly what I wanted as it left some questions unanswered which is why I didn’t give it 5 stars.

The Likeness by Tana French ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

This is the ‘sequel’ to In the Woods though it is more of a companion novel. It’s set a bit after the first book but focuses on Rob’s partner, Cassie when she’s faced with a dead body that looks almost identical to her own, using an undercover identity she once used. I honestly loved this book and everything in it. I loved the group dynamic that’s included and the actual investigation itself is so intriguing. I just really loved this book and it’s definitely a new favourite. I can’t wait to read the next book from her ex-boss Frank’s point of view as he was a really interesting character.

Thanks for reading! 🙂

Top Ten Tuesday – Ten Books That Have Been On Your Shelf (Or TBR) From Before You Started Blogging That You STILL Haven’t Read Yet

Top Ten Tuesday is an weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish where a different ‘challenge’ for a list of ten books/bookish things is set each week. This week’s topic is ‘Ten Books That Have Been On Your Shelf/TBR Since Before You Started Blogging That You Still Haven’t Read Yet’.

I’m 90% sure that these books are from before I started this blog and it’s kind of interesting to see how much my book buying tastes have changed since then, I didn’t have nearly as many unread books then as I do now. This post will definitely serve as a reminder to read all of these books! So, the books I bought before I started blogging are –

Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal? by Jeanette Winterson

The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily M. Danforth

Vicious by V. E. Schwab

Graceling by Kristin Cashore

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (Which for some reason now have 3 copies of!)

Les Misérables by Victor Hugo

The Colour of Magic by Terry Pratchett

Across the Universe by Beth Revis

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor (I think I got this the first week I started blogging!)

Thanks for reading! 🙂

 

July Book Haul

Welcome to my July Book Haul! Despite not really shopping last month I somehow managed to accumulate quite a few books which I’m kind of both happy and annoyed about. I really need to stop buying so many books so hopefully my future book hauls will be a lot smaller (even though I’ve already bought a few this month). Anyway, the books I bought/received were –

July BH

Classic Scottish Writing by Alasdair Gray (This and the next 6 books were part of a Scottish literature set so I might not be able to link all of them.)

Selected Poems by Robert Burns

Selected Stories by James Kelman

Selected Stories by Muriel Spark

Two Stories by Sir Walter Scott

Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

Four Tales by James Hogg

How Hard Can Love Be? by Holly Bourne

Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake

Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour by Morgan Matson

Under Rose-Tainted Skies by Louise Gornall

The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson

Reading Lolita in Tehran by Azar Nafisi

Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys

Sweet Little Lies by Jill Shalvis

Inkheart by Cornelia Funke

The Emperor’s Blades by Brian Staveley

The Shadow Queen by C. J. Redwine

Girl Hearts Girl by Lucy Sutcliffe

After Alice by Gregory Maguire

The Penny Heart by Martine Bailey

White is for Witching by Helen Oyeyemi

The Magicians by Lev Grossman

The Unseeing by Anna Mazzola

The Cold Commands by Richard Morgan

The Girls by Emma Cline

Monstress – Awakening by Marjorie Lu and Sana Takeda

Thanks for reading! 🙂

WWW Wednesday/July Wrap Up

WWW Wednesday is a weekly book meme hosted by Taking on a World of Words. This meme involves answering three questions. What are you currently reading? What did you recently finish reading? What do you think you’re going to read next? I’ve also decided to sorta combine this post with my monthly wrap up as I was only able to read one book last month.

What are you currently reading?

I’m currently reading three books at the moment, The Girls by Emma Cline, Timeless by Gail Carriger and Monstress by Marjorie M. Liu. I’m around halfway through all of these so I’ll most likely review all of these in my August Wrap Up.

What did you recently finish reading?

I recently finished Girl Hearts Girl by Lucy Sutcliffe. It was the only book I read last month and I posted a review as part of a book tour here which I’m also counting as my monthly wrap up review.

girl hearts girls

What do you think you’re going to read next?

I might read either Etiquette and Espionage by Gail Carriger (as I’ll have finished the Parasol Protectorate series by then) or DC Bombshells Volume 1 as I really want to get back into reading comic books again and I love the art style from what I’ve seen of DC Bombshells already. I also have a few other books I’d like to read this month but I may make these two priority.

Thanks for reading! 🙂

Top Ten Tuesday – Ten Books You’d Buy Right This Second If Someone Handed You A Fully Loaded Gift Card

Hello and Welcome to Top Ten Tuesday! Top Ten Tuesday is an weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish where a different ‘challenge’ for a list of ten books/bookish things is set each week. This week’s topic is ‘Ten Books You’d Buy Right This Second If Someone Handed You A Fully Loaded Gift Card’ so I’ve shared 10 of my most wished for books. This post was a bit last minute as I’ve just got back from a weekend away but I really wanted to get something up before my monthly wrap up so I hope this is okay! All books are linked to Goodreads if you’d like to find out more.  Anyway the books I’d love to buy are –

Every Heart a Doorway  by Seanan McGuire

10 Things No One Will Tell a Fat Girl by Jes Baker

We Were Feminists Once by Andi Zeisler

We Are the Ants by Shaun David Hutchinson

In the Country We Love: My Family Divided by Diane Guerrero


Juliet Takes a Breath
by Gabby Rivera

Otherbound by Corinne Duyvis

Sister Outsider by Audre Lorde

The Abyss Surrounds Us by Emily Skrutskie

The Second Footman by Jasper Barry

Thanks for reading! 🙂

REVIEW/BLOG TOUR – Girl Hearts Girl by Lucy Sutcliffe

girl hearts girls

Girl Hearts Girl by Lucy Sutcliffe
★ ★ ★ ★ ★ |  5 Star Rating
Goodreads | Amazon | Author’s Twitter
This post is a part of the blog tour for this book and I received a copy in exchange for an honest review. Check out the other stops in the tour at the end of the post!

Synopsis

 An inspiring, uplifting and sympathetic story about sexuality and self-acceptance, Lucy Sutcliffe’s debut memoir is a personal and moving coming out story. In 2010, at seventeen, Lucy Sutcliffe began an online friendship with Kaelyn, from Michigan. They began a long distance relationship, finally meeting in 2011. Lucy’s video montage of their first week spent together was the first in a series of vlogs documenting their long-distance relationship. Now, for the first time, Lucy’s writing about the incredible personal journey she’s been on.

My Thoughts

Girl Hearts Girl is a wonderful coming-of-age story about Lucy Sutcliffe’s (who you may know from the youtube channel Kaelyn and Lucy) journey from a shy young girl who worried about coming out to the amazing youtuber she is today. It tells you the story of how Lucy came to terms with her sexuality, her university experience and how she got to know Kaelyn online before they finally met.

Lucy writes in a simple but lovely way that was really enjoyable to read and I think a lot of people will find easy and entertaining to read. Though this book is aimed at a younger audience Lucy doesn’t speak down to the reader or simplify her (sometimes difficult) experiences, she tells her story truthfully to try and find common ground with the reader and relate to their experiences. I really connected with her description of anxiety and the toxic friendship she had with a boy named Rex as it’s something I’ve been through and I think she captured the difficulty involved really well. This book allows you to  experience Lucy’s life alongside her and go through the motions with her from her younger years in primary school to her long distance realtionship with Kaelyn. It was also great to see the little insights into how she met Kaelyn as I’ve been to subscribed to them for a few years and love their channel.

I just think this book will make a lot of difference to a lot of kids as its a non-fiction, realistic experience of how she dealt with her own anxiety and sexual orientation that I haven’t really read before, especially aimed at such a young audience. It will hopefully help a lot of kids love themselves and be able to reach out which I think is a really great thing and something I wish was available when I was younger. I’m glad something with such a happy ending is available within a market over saturated with such sad endings for LGBTQIAP+ people and I definitely recommend picking this book up if you’re looking for an uplifting read.

For a chance to win a copy of Girl Hearts Girl click here! Also I definitely recommend checking out the other stops in this blog tour which are listed below.

GHG Banner

Thanks for reading! 🙂

June Wrap Up/Book Haul

Sadly I was only able to read 2 books last month though I was hoping for more. It was a pretty hectic month for me and I was also in a bit of a reading slump after binge reading most of the Parasol Protectorate series so hopefully things will look up a bit this month and I manage to get more reading done. Despite this the books that I did read were excellent and they were –

In Order to Live by Yeonmi Park ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

This was an absolutely phenomenal book despite the fact it was so heart-breaking and sometimes difficult to read. It educated me on a lot of things that I wasn’t knowledgeable about before, not only North Korea as a whole but the sex trade within China and the treatment of victims of the North Korean regime. It’s such a hard book to read due to how distressing it can be but it’s definitely worth it as Yeonmi Park fights to become the amazing activist she is today. I definitely recommend picking this one up!

Heartless by Gail Carriger ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

Like all the Gail Carriger books I’ve read before, I loved this. As always Alexia and Co. were hilarious and intriguing to read about and I loved some of the things that developed in this book and how they affected the group dynamic as a whole. I don’t want to spoil it so I’ll say no more but I definitely think this series is worth a read if you’re into the paranormal genre or looking for something fun to read.


Since I didn’t get much reading done in June I figured I’d include the books I picked up in this post as well! Here are the books I picked up in June-

JUNE HAUL.JPG

Art is Dead – The asdf Book by Thomas Ridgewelll

Black Widow – Forever Red by Margaret Stohl

The Percy Jackson and the Olympians series by Rick Riordan

Beloved by Toni Morrison

An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth by Chris Hadfield

A Court of Mist and Fury  by Sarah J Maas (I just realised this was in last months haul as well. Sorry!)

The Girl of Ink and Stars by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

The Girl with Seven Names: A North Korean Defector’s Story by Hyeonseo Lee

Highly Illogical Behaviour by John Corey Whaley

Heartless by Gail Carriger

Timeless by Gail Carriger

You Know Me Well by Nina LaCour and David Levithan

These Shallow Graves by Jennifer Donnelly

Easy by Tammara Webber

More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera

Fell by Jenn Ashworth

Lizzy Bennett’s Diary by Marcia Williams

DC Bombshells Volume 1 by Marguerite Bennett and Marguerite Sauvage

Thanks for reading! 🙂

Top Ten Tuesday – Most Anticipated Releases For The Second Half Of The Year

Top Ten Tuesday is an weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish where a different ‘challenge’ for a list of ten books/bookish things is set each week. This weeks topic is classed as ‘Freebie Week’ where you are able to choose your own topic from either past topics or one you make up. I’ve chosen to do a topic from 2 weeks ago which I missed which is Most Anticipated Releases for the Second Half of the Year’. There are quite a few upcoming releases I’m looking forward to but I have managed to narrow it down to these 10. Click the Goodreads links to find out more about each book!

And I Darken by Kiersten White July 7th – 2016

Under Rose-Tainted Skies by Louise Gornall – July 7th 2016

Run by Kody Keplinger – July 14th 2016

Georgia Peaches and Other Forbidden Fruit by Jaye Robin Brown – August 30th 2016

Furthermore by Tahereh Mafi – September 1st 2016

Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake – September 20th 2016

Iron Cast by Destiny Soria – October 11th 2016

Timekeeper by Tara Sim – November 1st 2016

Of Fire and Stars by Audrey Coulthurst – November 22nd 2016

Bad Boy by Elliot Wake – December 15th 2016

Thanks for reading! 🙂