Books

The Girl Before by JP Delaney

“I’ll just read a chapter or two before I go to sleep” – every bookworm who’s ever missed their bedtime and woken up grumpy the next morning.

Also me, just before I started reading this book. And then finished it an hour or so later. And then woke up tired the next day.

Seriously, bookworms. Will we never learn?  Continue reading “The Girl Before by JP Delaney”

Books

The Truth And Lies Of Ella Black By Emily Barr

First of all I should apologise to the lovely people at Penguin who sent me this book to review, because they sent it in mid-December and it’s now mid-February. Sorry about that.

I must also apologise because they asked me to take a selfie with the book in a place that means a lot to me, and I told them I don’t really do selfies but I’d try to do the place thing, and then I completely forgot because January was fucking mental.

Continue reading “The Truth And Lies Of Ella Black By Emily Barr”

Books

Force of Nature by Jane Harper

I reviewed The Dry by Jane Harper a while ago, and since I’d liked it, the publisher sent me an advance copy of Force of Nature too, which will be coming out soon.

The Dry was Harper’s debut novel, and it’s often the case with debuts that the author hasn’t quite found their voice yet, or finds it towards the end of the book. I liked The Dry, but it wasn’t one I recommended to anyone in 2017. It was a good solid novel, but nothing more than that.

Force of Nature, on the other hand, is a different story. It’s one of those books that truly defines the term ‘page-turner’.

Continue reading “Force of Nature by Jane Harper”

Books

Reading List #9: Gardening, Philosophy, Poetry, And The Book of Dust

PHILIP PULLMAN RELEASED A NEW BOOK and this made me so excited that of course I had to go and buy it straight away.

Continue reading “Reading List #9: Gardening, Philosophy, Poetry, And The Book of Dust”

Books

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

A house burns to the ground while the family who live in it stand outside and watch. All bar two, that is: the absentees are the father, who is away at work, and the youngest daughter Izzy. Everyone knows it was Izzy who burned the house down, because that’s just like her: ever a wild child, impossible to control, Izzy has been the family’s unpredictable rebel practically since the day she was born.

Continue reading “Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng”

Books

Weekly Reading List #8: Bacteria and Brainwashing

I might stop the general weekly round-ups now, since I’m back on my feet after surgery and therefore have no need to update people via the blog. But the reading will continue, obviously, and so will the book round-ups.

This week I read two books, and both were good.

Continue reading “Weekly Reading List #8: Bacteria and Brainwashing”

Books

How Not To Be A Boy by Robert Webb

At the moment I’m writing a novel. The protagonist is a teenage boy. His name is Anthony and he’s dealing with a lot of things in his life, one of which is the underlying current of societal expectations of masculinity. This isn’t exactly a huge theme in the book, but I think it’s probably an important part of any boy’s upbringing, so I want to get it right. I decided therefore to read some things about what it’s like to grow up male.

I am not, and nor have I ever been, male. However I have always empathised with expectations of masculinity. I’ve been the breadwinner in every household I’ve lived in since a young age, and I’ve been surrounded by people and situations that made showing any kind of emotion discouraged. Growing up, I felt pressured to swallow whatever I might have been feeling and essentially ‘man up and get on with it.’ Despite not knowing what it’s like to be a boy, therefore, I have perhaps an above-average level of empathy for the challenges brought on by society’s expectations of masculinity.

Enter Webb’s autobiography.

Continue reading “How Not To Be A Boy by Robert Webb”