Books

The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert

I hadn’t heard of this book before Penguin invited me, on a balmy summer evening in London, to attend a cocktail party with its author. They were giving out free copies of the book when I arrived, and I took it home and read it that night.

It was good.  Continue reading “The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert”

Books

The Incendiaries by R.O. Kwon

I was pretty sure I’d love this book, because I grew up in a cult and as an adult I’ve done some work in counter terror. The story focuses on Phoebe, a Korean-American college student who becomes enraptured by the magnetic personality of John Leal, who runs an exclusive cult. The cult members all live together in a big house, and Phoebe ends up moving in with them. Leal has ties to North Korea, which intrigues Phoebe too.  Continue reading “The Incendiaries by R.O. Kwon”

Books

Some books I liked, and some books I wanted to like

Most of my novel reading is crime / psychological thrillers, with a hefty dose of chick lit, plus what I guess you’d call drama / literature thrown in. However I think it’s good to read a range of books, including some from outside your comfort zone. I also try to vary my books by country and continent, making sure to read things that are outside of my own personal experience.

Sometimes this works really well and I find new books to love. Sometimes it works less well and I find myself trying very hard to like a book that just doesn’t speak to me.  Continue reading “Some books I liked, and some books I wanted to like”

Books

Am I Normal Yet? by Holly Bourne

Rarely do I read a book that talks about mental illness in a way that’s both accurate and relatable. Am I Normal Yet? is such a book.

It’s about a girl with OCD. Her name is Evie and she just wants to be normal, whatever that means. She’s been working towards it with her therapist and making good progress since being discharged from hospital, where she’d stayed for a while due to her mental health problems.  Continue reading “Am I Normal Yet? by Holly Bourne”

Books

Shitty Witchcraft, Pretzelesque Twists, And The Weirdest Book I’ve Ever Read

Damn you, Jenny Lawson. (Not really, I love you.) But because of your weird new book club I ended up ordering The Haunted Vagina from Amazon, and now my recommendations are almost as strange as yours. Almost.

It’s easily the weirdest book I’ve ever read. But it’s not the only one I’ve read recently, so rather than spending a whole post focusing on its oddness, here are a few of the books I’ve hung out with lately and what I thought of them.  Continue reading “Shitty Witchcraft, Pretzelesque Twists, And The Weirdest Book I’ve Ever Read”

Books

How do you prioritise your reading list?

A while ago The Little Red Reviewer talked about how she prioritises her reading list. This might not sound like a huge deal, but if you have as many TBR (‘to be read’) categories as I do it quickly becomes a challenge.

I read books for several reasons: I want to; they’ve been sent to me for free in exchange for a review on the blog; a client is paying me to review them; I need to read them for an academic research project; I need to read them for some other reason; they’re in a foreign language and I’ve resolved to read more of those; I picked them up in a charity shop because they looked interesting; they represent gaps in my reading list… honestly I could probably go on. But you get the picture: there are lots of reasons why I read books, and therefore lots of TBR piles. Continue reading “How do you prioritise your reading list?”

Books

Tuesday Thrillers

Sometimes you just need a good crime novel to inject some excitement into your day. I’ve been on a bit of a crime fiction drive over the past few weeks – not unusual for me – so I thought I’d share a few I’ve read recently.

Continue reading “Tuesday Thrillers”