RECENT READS | #6-10

books-5-9

Hello! This is a new feature on my blog where I’ll be briefly talking about the books I’ve read this year. I did quarterly wrap up posts last year, but I decided that I wanted to do these wrap up posts with a little more frequency. Really, I’d just like to get into the habit of saying something about every book that I read, and I don’t always have enough to say about a book to warrant a full length review.

I’ve read 11 books so far this year — if you’re wondering why this post is starting at #6, it’s because I talked about the first four books I read this year in my #DAReadathon Wrap Up post back in January, and I’ve also written a full length review of Heartless by Marissa Meyer. I’ve had a great reading year so far, I honestly don’t know that I’ve ever read over ten books before the end of February before. Plus, I’ve given every book I’ve read a pretty good rating, so let’s get into it!

Covers = Goodreads.

Continue reading “RECENT READS | #6-10”

BEST BOOKS OF 2016

bestbooks2016

Hello! I’ve been somewhat absent. Again. I’m trying very hard not to make this a habit, though I’ve really no excuse for my lack of posts. Obviously Christmas happened, and I work in retail, so I’ll let you imagine exactly how fun that was. I’d hoped to get this post up on Monday, but then New Year’s Eve happened and I was, perhaps, a touch hungover on New Year’s Day. Mostly, however, I was very full of cold, so my plans for a productive New Year’s unraveled very quickly. I promise I’ll be better at this (it is, actually, one of my goals for this year).

Anyway, it’s time to talk about my favourite books that I read in 2016! Much like my 2015 favourites, there’s not one single reason all of these books are on the list. Frankly, some of them are poles apart in terms of content and tone. This list basically consists of all the books I gave five stars this year, and some I gave four stars to (I’m remarkably stingy about five star ratings, for some reason). These books aren’t in any particular order, and there’s roughly ten books overall. This is very likely going to be a lengthy post, so I’ll get right into it!

Continue reading “BEST BOOKS OF 2016”

TAG | BOOK SCAVENGER HUNT

I was tagged by Ravenclaw Book Club to do this incredibly fun tag! Basically, you have to follow the instructions given, and then find a book that matches the description in your collection. I have a feeling this could get a little long (as all my posts tend to, really) so I’ll get right into it!

FIND A BOOK WITH THE LETTER ‘Z’ IN THE AUTHOR’S NAME.

bookthief

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak — this is perhaps a bit of an obvious choice, but I couldn’t resist putting one of my all-time favourite books in here.

FIND A CLASSIC.

middlemarch

Middlemarch by George Eliot — I haven’t read this yet, mostly because I’m super intimidated by the length, but it’s one of the prettiest classics I own. It’s one of the Penguin English Library editions designed by Coralie Bickford-Smith.

FIND THE OLDEST BOOK ON YOUR SHELVES.

thestand

The Stand by Stephen King — this was originally my dad’s copy of the book. He gave it to me back when I was about fourteen and going through a real Stephen King phase. This copy was published in 1980, and I’m fairly sure my dad’s owned it since then. It’s very, very well read. I’d love to reread this some day, but I think I’d have to buy a new copy first. For further perspective on how old this book is, it cost £1.75 full price!!

thestand2

If you’re the sort of person who likes to keep their books really neat, I can only apologise for the state of it (though, in its/my defence, it is over thirty years old).

FIND A BOOK WITH A KEY ON ITS COVER.

dumakey

Duma Key by Stephen King — okay, so I couldn’t find a book with an actual key on it, but the word counts, right? I really liked this back when I read it, the characters are incredibly interesting and well-developed.

FIND SOMETHING ON YOUR SHELVES THAT ISN’T A BOOK.

desk

I’ve probably mentioned this on my blog before, but I don’t actually have a bookshelf because there isn’t really space for one in my room. So here’s the stuff on top of the selection of pretty books I keep on my desk. Featuring: some tsum tsums, some jewellery, and the cutest droid in the galaxy.

FIND A BOOK WITH AN ANIMAL ON THE COVER.

thedumbhouse

The Dumb House by John Burnside — I rather wish I had a less grim book for this option, but there we have it. I bought this after hearing Jen Campbell rave about it so much. It sounded like something I’d really be interested in, and I’d love to get around to reading it soon.

FIND A BOOK WITH A GIRL ON ITS COVER.

hungergames

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins — I know there are about a hundred other books that I could have picked for this option, but I actually thought I’d lost my first copy of this book years ago! I found it while searching for other books for this tag. I thought I’d lent it to a friend and she’d just never given it back to me. I literally bought new copies of the books because I couldn’t find this one.

FIND A NON-YA BOOK.

thesea

The Sea by John Banville — this is the book I’ve most recently finished reading. I had to read it for my Haunting the Contemporary module. It’s beautifully written literary fiction about a man who, after the death of his wife, returns to the seaside village where he used to go on holiday as a child.

FIND A BOOK WITH STARS ON ITS COVER.

thegracekeepers

The Gracekeepers by Kirsty Logan — this is another Jen Campbell inspired purchase. I couldn’t find any books with more familiar star shapes, but those silver circles are definitely intended to be stars. Mostly I just wanted to show off how pretty this book is.

FIND A BOOK WITH GOLDEN LETTERS.

inkspell

Inkspell by Cornelia Funke — there are so many books with gold letters, but how could I not include the book whose title was the inspiration for my blog name?  I’m sure I mentioned this in my previous post, but I’d love to reread this series someday, I’m just scared it’ll lose the magic it held for me!

And that’s the tag! I loved searching through my collection to find these! As usual, I’m not sure whose been tagged, so for now I’ll tag Julianne and Becca 🙂

TAG | HARRY POTTER TAG

This tag was created by Bookidote (I’ve used their lovely graphics for this tag), and I was tagged by  Ravenclaw Book Club! The only rule is that you can’t use Harry Potter for any of your answers, which is such a cool idea. This looks so much fun, so here we go!

flagrate

A BOOK YOU FOUND THE THEME INTERESTING, BUT YOU’D LIKE TO REWRITE IT.

The only one I can really think of for this is Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder. It’s been a long time since I read it, but I just remember thinking that this had a really cool premise, but I wasn’t a huge fan of the writing, and I didn’t feel like picking up any of the other books in the series. Perhaps I’m being a little harsh, though!

 

alohomora

THE FIRST BOOK IN A SERIES THAT GOT YOU HOOKED.

The Knife of Never Letting Go is the book that got me into Patrick Ness. I bought it as a little birthday present to myself on my Kindle, absolutely devoured it and bought the next two books immediately after finishing. In other words, I bought them while I was still crying at the events in the latter part of the book.

accio

A BOOK YOU WISH YOU COULD HAVE RIGHT NOW.

I have two for this, the first being The City of Mirrors by Justin Cronin. This comes out in June and is the concluding book in his vampire trilogy, which remains one of my favourite series of all time. I read The Passage in 2011, and the second book, The Twelve, in 2013, so it has been one hell of a wait. My second is super obvious, and it’s The Winds of Winter by George R.R. Martin. This is the longest I’ve ever had to wait for a book, since I read the whole series right at the start of 2012.

avadakedavra

A KILLER BOOK. BOTH SENSES. TAKE IT AS YOU LIKE.

Let’s go for books about killers, shall we? Out by Natsuo Kirino is one of my favourite books, and it’s partly about a woman who murders her awful husband and then gets her co-workers to help her dispose of the body and cover up the crime. I read this when I was 16, so 6 years ago, and I remember how they dispose of the body very, very vividly. I also read American Psycho a year later, which begs the question: what the fuck, 16/17 year old me?

confundo

A BOOK YOU FOUND REALLY CONFUSING.

Dubliners by James Joyce. To tell the truth, I only read The Dead from this short story collection for a class I had back in my second year of university. The only thing I can tell you about it is that there’s snow, at some point. I couldn’t even tell you if it’s for the duration, or just a small part. You win, James Joyce.

epectopatronum

YOUR SPIRIT ANIMAL BOOK.

I actually found this kinda hard! I’m picking Howl’s Moving Castle, though, purely because Howl is a total drama queen and I can definitely relate to that.

spetumsemtra

A DARK, TWISTED BOOK.

Lost Souls by Poppy Z. Brite is a great book about really, really terrible vampires. By which I mean the good old-fashioned murdering kind of vampires. There are some really graphic scenes in here that I genuinely wasn’t expecting. This is one of those books that you’re either going to love, or you’re going to hate, but I really love it.

adaasd

A BOOK THAT SURPRISED YOU IN A GREAT WAY, REVEALS TO BE MORE THAN IT IS.

I’m going to go with Only Ever Yours by Louise O’Neill for this, even though everyone knows it’s a thought provoking book, I genuinely didn’t when I bought it. I thought this was going to be another YA dystopia that I could passively enjoy and not really think about, but nope! I did a presentation on this book for a module on my MA, and while I was going over it again I noticed all sorts of things that I didn’t notice the first time around. Do you ever just really want to write an essay on a book? No? Okay.

nominees

I tag:

Julianne @ quilltricks

Dee @ underthemidnightsky

and The Orang-utan Librarian if any of you guys fancy doing it! 🙂

I feel like I’m forgetting people, so if you want to do the tag, just do it and say I tagged you 😉