I haven't read as much this month as I did last month, but we did buy me a tablet so I've been using the Kindle app and I really like it. (My tablet is an Asus Memopad, it's PURPLE, I love it!)
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1) The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. I'd avoided this for so long because I don't really like John Green, despite the fact that he's huge in YA fiction. I tried to read An Abundance of Katherines and loathed it, so I hadn't read anything else. But we're doing this and the film in my Children's Writers group so I had no choice. I didn't hate it. I thought it was manipulative in parts - that the reader was "supposed" to feel a certain way - which I didn't like. I also think the portrayal of Augustus was slightly ridiculous - teenaged boys aren't like that. But, I liked Hazel and I didn't hate the book.
2) Look Who It Is by Alan Carr. This is his autobiography, although in ends in 2008 which seems a shame as he's done lots since then. It does focus on his childhood though, which he recounts in typical fashion. I enjoyed this, nothing too strenuous but interesting to learn more about him.
3) The Teashop on the Corner by Milly Johnson. A friend recommended Milly Johnson to me as her books are set in Barnsley (where I live). I had some Amazon vouchers to spend and they had loads of books on 3 for £10 so I chose this one as part of that. It is nice to read something set in Barnsley, even though I felt the geography was off sometimes. This is pure chick lit but it's well written. The women are great, but the men are too. Often the men in chick lit are rubbish, but not here. This was a really big novel, but nice to get my teeth into.
4) The Opposite of Loneliness by Marina Keegan. Oh man, this book. I read it for a Bloggers Book Club discussion and I'm really glad I did. It's a collection of 9 short stories and 9 essays from this author, who graduated from Yale and was then killed in a car crash 5 days later. One of her essays - the titular one - went viral, and her family published this. I went into it quite sceptical - what if it only got published because she had died? However, when I finished this I was genuinely upset that Keegan never got to write a full length novel or more of her excellent stories. The essays are interesting and the stories are SO gripping - the one set on the submarine was TERRIFYING. I recommend this so much - it isn't much on Kindle at the moment.
5) The Zig Zag Girl by Elly Griffiths. I absolutely love Elly Griffiths' early novels, which centre on an archaeologist called Ruth Galloway. They're slightly ridiculous and stretch plausibility at times, but I love Ruth as a character and her live and friends. They also have a strong theology/mythology theme, which I love. So I was interested in Griffiths' first novel which doesn't focus on Ruth. Instead, it's set in 1950 and focusses on a policeman called Edgar who was part of a secret service thing with a lot of magicians in WWII. A woman connected to one of the magicians gets murdered, which means Edgar has to get back in touch with all his old friends. There's a lot to get into, and I really liked it. I'm excited to see what Griffiths writes next!
What have you been reading this month?
Definitely liking the sound of The Zig Zag Girl - thanks for reviewing! Magicians and the secret service is certainly a recipe for intrigue and I really like books set in that period.ReplyDelete
I think I'll have a look at the Marina Keegan collection as well; probably not something I'd usually have picked up but it sounds fascinating.