What I read in July, August and September

I’ve wanted to write this post for a stupidly long time but I just haven’t been reading enough. There have been various reasons for this. The biggest reason has been the refurb we have had done in our house. We converted our unusable garage into our home office. I also found out I was pregnant which has meant I have been consuming a lot of pregnancy-related material rather than reading for pleasure. I can tell you a lot about breast pads, hypno-birthing and bottle sterilisers but I doubt you’d want to hear any of that. I have also been writing so much more, personally and professionally—something I am very proud of—but this has meant I have less free time for reading. Finally, I have put a lot of focus into Evergreen Editorial’s marketing and legwork to make it the business I know it can be. So I have decided to collate everything I have read in the past three months—which isn’t much—so this post actually has some content. I have already bought heaps of books to read through in October so next month I’ll be better, I promise! I would also like to dedicate this post to my informal mentor of bad-assery, Karen Marston, who has actually been waiting for me to write this post. Here you go, Karen!

P.S. The featured image of this post is part of our bookshelves in our office. Isn’t it pretty?!


We-Should-All-Be-Feminists_Chimamanda-Ngozi-AdichieI have been meaning to buy this book since I heard her Chimamanda’s voice on Beyoncé’s ****Flawless. I wouldn’t say I stan for Beyoncé’ but I have plans to be her when I am older. This is a tiny little book and should take no more than an hour to whizz through. Don’t let the size deter you though, this book is so important. It is a personal essay and is written so eloquently with anecdotes and soul-searching that feel like you’re having a conversation with Adichie herself. I have encouraged everyone I know to read it. I have often felt like the media, people on Twitter etc try to tell people how they should be a feminist where as this book lets you know that there is no right or wrong way. As the essay points points out, a feminist is a person who believes in the social, political and economic equality of the sexes and it explores feminism from both a female and male perspective. During reading, I’d often exclaimed “Yeah!” or “Hell Yeah!” and I felt so inspired once I’d finished that developed a girl crush on Chimamanda Ngozie Adichie. I have consumed all the information I can find on her and she is just wonderful.  It is a book that has made me want to do better and raise the little boy that I am growing in a way that he thinks about his gender and explores the effect this will have on his experience of the world.

 

Goodreads rating: 5 stars

 


Americanah_Chimamanda-Ngozie-AdichiI don’t have my own image for this book because I have lent it to a friend. If you are reading this Róisín, this is a clear testament of how much I like you and how much I wanted you to read this book—I don’t like lending people my books! I read this book religiously every day, something I haven’t done with a book in awhile. It really spoke to me and I love how well-developed the characters were in it. It is incredibly well-written. She has an amazing ways with words that make me never want to attempt writing ever again because what’s the point when she is so good? It deals with race in a way that isn’t stereotypical or biased, it is thoughtful and multi-dimensional. I did find myself getting slightly annoyed towards the end where I felt she could have ended it a lot early than she did. It gave me a vibe of her showing just how intelligent she is and there were other points were her choice of vocabulary was perhaps unnecessarily advanced but that might just be me. I read this every night before bed over the course of a week and missed it as soon as I had finished.

 

Goodreads rating: 4 stars

 

 

 


Saga-Brian-K-VaughanGraphic novels are my jam. The graphic novel shelf of our little library is threatening to spill over and we will need to provide more space to this genre. I cannot stress enough how much I love this graphic novel series. I am chomping at the bit after every volume. I aim to savour and take my time my time over whenever I get a new one but basically devour them as soon as they arrive in the post. I began reading this series last year; I bought the first volume in April 2015 as it was recommended by Amazon and as soon as I finished it, I ordered the next three the next month. Volume 5 wasn’t available until September that year, which was incredibly frustrating. There is a character for everyone to love and the story is well-paced in each volume. Another great thing about this series is it is something I can share with my husband. We both love it as much as each other and will talk about an issue for ages afterwards. Another person who shares my love of the series is Ms Karen Marston and she just happens to be mates with the artist who illustrates the books, Fiona Staples, which I believe just adds to her bad-assery. I now have to wait until the next volume comes out, which distresses me greatly.

 

Goodreads rating: 5 stars

 


Beautiful-Broken-Things_Sara-BarnardI grabbed this from Amazon when they were doing a 3 books for £10 offer. I liked the idea of bringing mental health as I don’t feel like it is touched on enough in literature. This YA novel is well-written and pretty competent for a debut in my opinion but I did come away feeling pretty ‘meh’ about it. While there were elements of this book I enjoyed: the reminder of what it was like to be in a friendship with other girls in high school for example, there were still a few elements I didn’t like. I didn’t like the narrator at all. I was far more interested in the character who had issues with mental health and would have preferred to read more from her perspective. That said, I read the book reasonably quickly, which does indicate an interest beyond ‘meh’ but I don’t have anything insightful or thoughtful to say about it. It was just okay.

 

Goodreads rating: 3 stars

 

 


Beautiful-You_Chuck-PalahniukI got this one from the library, primarily because I found myself in a library and I think it’s illegal to leave a library without borrowing a book. I’ve read three books by Chuck Palahniuk including this one, the first was the obvious: Fight Club, which I loved. I read Choke during university and wasn’t as keen but love the way he was able to come across as being kinda pissed off at the world while describing it in well-observed detail. This book, however, I don’t … I mean, I can’t … it’s just … When I explained the premise of this book to my husband we laughed so hard, pee came out. I would like to stress this book is not supposed to be a comedy. Most of the time I was reading I felt amused, violated and confused simultaneously. I don’t know if that was what he was going for, I seriously doubt it. I actually don’t think you should read it. I am so surprised I did but it was like a car crash of a story, I couldn’t stop staring at it even though I wanted to. I felt like I may have missed some kind of nuance until I logged it in on Goodreads. The other reviews were written in a similar vein to my thoughts. One of them was just NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO over and over again for more than half the screen. So it’s safe to say this was not Chuck’s best.

 

Goodreads rating: 2 stars

 

 


Fiction: 4

Non-Fiction: 1

Follow me on Goodreads to keep up with what I am reading and see me fail miserably at my reading challenge. C’mon, it’ll be fun.