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”

Writing

How I Plan My Books

The thing about writing advice is that I don’t want to give it. Partly because I only have one book out so far, and partly because I think the process is probably different for everyone. What I do know though is that when I started writing my first book, I looked around for ages trying to find ideas.

I’d never been much of planner when it came to essays or books or papers. I was much more of a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants type. But last year was tumultuous and I needed some kind of plan or the book would never have been written. So I thought I’d show it to you in case it’s of use.  Continue reading “How I Plan My Books”

The Changeling's Fortune by K.C. Lannon
Books

The Changeling’s Fortune by K.C. Lannon

A while ago, Christa forwarded me a tweet from an author who was looking for a Romani sensitivity reader. The fact that K.C. Lannon was looking for one in the first place impressed me: while sensitivity reading is a growing field, I’ve never heard of someone using one for characters of Roma descent, and most of the books I’ve read which feature members of the travelling community have been starkly stereotypical (the obvious exception being Miriam Wakerly’s excellent novels).

I got in touch with K.C. Lannon and she sent me her manuscript, The Changeling’s Fortune. I sensitivity read it, which was pretty easy because Lannon had done her research beforehand, so whilst I made a few suggestions it wasn’t like so many of the wildly unaccurate representations I’ve read in the past. The book will be coming out shortly, so I thought I’d do a quick review of it on here.  Continue reading “The Changeling’s Fortune by K.C. Lannon”

Books

We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler

When I picked this book off the shelf in my local charity shop I thought it looked familiar. Then I read the blurb and it sounded like a storyline I recognised, but I still wasn’t sure if I’d read it before. Since it was only £1, I took it home and read it in the bath.

It turned out I had read it before, but I didn’t notice until quite far into the book, so it must have been a long time ago. And it didn’t matter that I’d read it already, because it was very good.

Continue reading “We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler”

Books

The Good Son by You-jeong Jeong

I’ll admit that I agreed to review this book because the protagonist is a swimmer, and I was hoping for some passages about how wonderful swimming is. Something like Jessica J. Lee’s Turning: A Swimming Memoir.

If you’re buying it for that reason, you’ll be disappointed at the lack of swimming-related content. But you won’t be disappointed by the book itself, which is excellent. It was so gripping that I got angry with myself for not being able to stay awake long enough to finish it in one go.  Continue reading “The Good Son by You-jeong Jeong”

Weekly Round-Ups

How Do You Fit It All In? #3

The third instalment in an ongoing series which was born of me not wanting to keep dealing with people’s incredulous looks when I tell them what I do.  Continue reading “How Do You Fit It All In? #3”