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Sunday, 30 March 2014

March Book Haul

It's the end of the month so it's time to have a look at the books I bought throughout March. There are a lot of them! I went a bit overboard this month, I am not sorry. Not even a little bit.

So in no particular order, the books I bought this month are:

1. Cinder by Marissa Myer
A retelling of Cinderella where Cinders is a cyborg? Yes please!

2. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
This seems to be making its rounds on people's blogs so I thought I'd see what the fuss was about.

3. Half Bad by Sally Green
I am so excited to read this one – a story about good witches vs. bad witches and the boy in between.

4. Fighting Ruben Wolfe by Markus Zusak
I'll be honest, I have no idea what this book is about, I just bought it because it's by Markus Zusak.

5. The Shock of the Fall by Nathan Filer
The blurb on the back of this one grabbed me. It talks about Simon, who “in a couple of pages (will) be dead. And he was never the same after that.”

6. Thirsty by M. T. Anderson
A vampire book. It was recommended by John Green, so I trust his judgement!

7. The Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick
I bought this because it sounded interesting and I needed something to add up the money on an online order so I could qualify for free shipping! Also I'd like to see the film and I do try to read the book of a film first.

8. Tiger Eyes by Judy Blume
I was reminiscing about books I read when I was a teenager and I remember that I loved this, so I thought I'd add it to my shelves again.

9. A Streetcat Named Bob by James Bowen

10. The World According to Bob by James Bowen

I saw these books everywhere recently so I looked up what they were about and bought both books straight away. It's a memoir of a man, a cat and an amazing friendship.  

Saturday, 29 March 2014

Book Review: Pandemonium


Pandemonium is the second book in Lauren Oliver's Delirium series. It is separated into “Then” and “Now” sections, with the “then” sections telling what happened to Lena directly after what happened at the end of Delirium, and the “now” sections talking about her involvement with the rebellion.

I always think going in to a second book in a trilogy that it is going to suffer from “second book syndrome” and end up just being filler preparing the reader for the end of the story in the third book. This however did not suffer from that at all. It was very enjoyable and I actually ended up reading the entire book over the course of one Sunday (who needs productivity anyway?)

We are introduced to some new characters in this book and I enjoyed reading about them all. I also thought that Julian was an interesting new character and again, although I went into this book expecting not to like him at all, I actually enjoyed his character a lot. I also think that Lena's character arc is really working here; she is becoming less naïve and innocent and is starting to make some big decisions for herself now.

We also get to see more of the world outside of Portland in this book and I really liked that. I always want to know about the wider society in dystopian books and so it was nice to learn more about the society in this one.

Pandemonium is a great second book and it definitely made me want to read the third and final book in the trilogy! Go get it!  

Sunday, 23 March 2014

Book Cake Tag

I saw this tag floating around YouTube and it looked fun so I thought I'd give it a go! The idea is you assign a book to each of the ingredients that go towards making a cake. I love cake and books so I had to do this, really.

1) Flour – A book that was a little bit slow to start off but that really picked up as it went along.

Wicked by Gregory Maguire. I wasn't sure about this one when I first started it but I ended up really enjoying it.

2) Butter – A book that had a really rich and great plot.

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. (No photo because a friend of mine is borrowing my copy right now!) This one had me gripped the whole time. At one point I was reading it on the underground and when I had to switch lines I ran to my next train so I could see what was going to happen next!

3) Eggs – A book that you thought was going to be bad but actually turned out quite enjoyable.

Night of the Living Trekkies. I bought this for a laugh. It was £1 and the title made me laugh, and being the zombie fan and Trekkie that I am I had to pick it up. I actually ended up really enjoying it! Not the world's deepest book but it was certainly fun!

4) Sugar – A sugary/sweet book.

The Princess Diaries. I actually had a really hard time with this question – I need to read more sweet books I guess!

5) Icing – A book that covered every single element that you enjoy about a book (funny moments, action moments, sad moments, etc.).

The Harry Potter series. I'm probably cheating by naming a series rather than a solitary book, but come on! It's got everything! Magic spells, daring sword fights, and a (half-blood) Prince in disguise!

6) Sprinkles – A book series that you can kind of turn to for a little pick me up when you’re feeling down.

The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole aged 13¾. The story of a 13 year old “undiscovered intellectual” living in the Midlands in the 80s and pining over the love of his young life, Pandora Braithwaite. A great comic book. This book is utter comfort reading to me. The entire series is actually, but I thought I had better not cheat twice!

7) The cherry on top – Your favourite book this year so far.

Well it's only march, so I haven't read a lot of books yet, but so far I have to say I have enjoyed Delirium the most.

So there's my list - which books would be on yours?

Saturday, 22 March 2014

Book Review: Delirium

What if love were a disease? Would you want to be cured?

Delirium by Lauren Oliver is set in a future America in a society where love is considered a disease. The government has developed a cure (essentially a lobotomy) which stops people being able to feel love. The cure is compulsory when people reach the age of 18.

Our heroine, Lena is looking forward to her procedure. She is counting down the days, in fact. Lena believes in the system, and thoroughly supports the idea of being cured. That is, until she meets Alex and everything changes.

Delirium was a beautifully written book and I really enjoyed it. I thought Lena was a great character and I enjoyed spending time with her. I liked that she seemed to actually have a decent head on her shoulders and didn't rush off into stupid decisions. The book's pacing was good and I never felt bored as I waited to see what was going to happen next.

I did have a few questions about the premise of the book. I wanted to know how it worked with familial love. Boys and girls are separated until they are “cured” so that they don't fall in love, and this being a dystopia, anyone who isn't straight is not welcome in the society; but I wanted to know how people felt about love towards their family? It's said in the book that parents don't love their children, because of the cure, but what about siblings under the age of 18? Cousins? What about a child's love for their parents? I don't think it's enough of a question to stop me from enjoying the book, not by a long shot, but I'd love to know what people think about how forms of love other than romantic love exist (or not) in this world.

Delirium is part one of a trilogy. I have read all three books now and I can recommend this series completely!

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Top Five Wednesday - SEQUELS

I love watching “Top Five Wednesday” videos on YouTube, so I'm really excited to be finally making my own top five list! This week the topic was “Top Five Sequels”. So, in no particular order, my top five sequels are:

1. Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

This book was so exciting, it introduced some great new characters, was full of action and set up for the final part of the trilogy beautifully.

2. Moon Over Soho by Ben Aaronovitch

I love the Rivers of London series and I feel like people are not talking about it nearly as much. Peter Grant is a policeman working in London for a special branch of the Met – the magic branch. This is a really funny book, full of dry humour and a great follow up to the brilliant Rivers of London (or Midnight Riot in the US)

3. The Growning Pains of Adrian Mole by Sue Townsend

Adrian Mole will always have a special place in my memory. This series is real comfort reading for me, and so I couldn't talk about sequels without mention this one.

4. Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver

I've only just read this, so maybe I'm including it because it's fresh in my mind, but I sat and read the whole thing over the course of one Sunday and loved it. I enjoyed the new characters that were introduced and I really felt like the story was being continued in an exciting way, so this book had to be included here.

5. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J. K Rowling

I'm not sure if I'm cheating by naming the third book in a series instead of the second, but I think this might be my favourite book of the entire series. I loved the amount of character development that happened in this book, the plot kept me gripped the whole time, and it was the first Harry Potter book where I counted down the days until the release date. This one has a special place in my heart!

You can find the list of people participating in Top Five Wednesday at:

Monday, 17 March 2014

Three Men in a Boat Book Review

I needed a break from all the dystopian fiction I've been reading lately so I picked up a copy of Three Men in a Boat (to say nothing of the dog) by Jerome K. Jerome. I remember my grandfather always telling me that this was one of his favourite books and so I thought it was time I finally got around to reading it! I'm really glad I did.

Three Men in a Boat is about three men and a dog who decide that they are all feeling fed up and the best thing that they should do is to spend two weeks on a boating holiday down the Thames. The book is then made up of the things they get up to on that holiday interspersed with anecdotes from the narrator's past.

One thing people always seem to mention when they talk about this book is how modern it seems. The writing style does feel very modern; it reminds me of P.G Wodehouse actually. I really loved the section when J (as the narrator is referred to by his friends) is talking about people in the future considering everyday 19th century objects as something precious:

Will it be the same in the future? Will the prized treasures of to-day always be the cheap trifles of the day before? Will rows of our willow- pattern dinner-plates be ranged above the chimneypieces of the great in the years 2000 and odd?”

I loved that passage because, yes J, people will do that. My grandparents had willow pattern plates on their wall above the fireplace.

The book is very funny, and the section where Harris talks about his adventures getting lost in Hampton Court maze is brilliant. Although there is a passage towards the end of the book where J describes a time when he found the body of a dead woman in the river. The section does not seem to fit with the tone of the rest of the book and it was a little off-putting. Just something to bear in mind if you decide to read this book.

I would recommend this book to anyone that wants a short, light-hearted read, and especially to anyone who has ever been on a boating holiday along the Thames!

Sunday, 16 March 2014

Book Haul!

I went a bit silly over the last few days and ordered a whole bunch of books from the internet so I thought I'd share what I got:

The books I got are:

1. Before I go to Sleep by SJ Watson

The premise of this book really interested me and it sounded like something very different from what I would usually read.

2. Panic by Lauren Oliver

I just finished reading Lauren Oliver's Delirium trilogy (reviews to come!) so I was pretty excited to get her newest novel.

3. Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

4. Hollow City by Ransom Riggs

I have heard so many good things about these books so I picked them both up. I can't wait to read them!

5. Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh

I've enjoyed a lot of  the comics on the Hyperbole and a Half blog so I had to get the book!

6. Bridget and Joan's Diary by Bridget Golightly and Joan Hardcastle

I've been in the mood for funny books recently and bought this one on a whim.

7. Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac by Gabrielle Zevin

Again, the premise interested me and it's different from the sort of books I usually read.

Has anyone read any of these books? What did you think?

(All books were purchased by me)

An Introduction

Hi there! I thought seeing as this was the first post on my blog I had better introduce myself a little. My name is Lisa and I love to read. I set up the blog because I wanted my own little corner of the internet where I could talk about books and book related subjects!

I read pretty much anything, so for now this blog will consist mostly of me talking about the books I read, as I read them. I'm always up for recommendations too, so feel free to recommend something you've loved!

I'm very new to this whole blogging thing, so I am just stumbling through as I go really, but I'd love to get talking about books, so feel free to join me anytime!

Happy reading!