Onjali Q. Rauf – The Boy at the Back of the Class

A warm, engaging and inspiring look at an all too relevant topic, I would recommend this book to everyone, but particularly as a very engaging and relatable way to introduce the topic of the refugee crisis to young children. I first heard of this book when it started winning awards, namely the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize 2019, and although it’s a children’s book, it hits with a big punch. Written from the...

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Paige Toon – The Last Piece of My Heart

Another E-book by an author that I’ve heard of but never read before, picked up because the e-book is currently free on Amazon, and the perfect book for a long train ride home. However, I did have extremely mixed feelings about the book, which you might understand as you hear more. In the book, we meet Bridget, a successful travel writer, who is currently travelling around the world meeting up with past boyfriends to ask them for...

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Cathy Bramley – We’ll Meet Again

What a sweet, perfectly romantic book. It was less than 50 pages long so you wouldn’t think you would have much time to become invested in the characters, but the way this was written made the characters feel like friends almost immediately. I’ve never read any of Cathy Bramley’s books before, but I decided to read this one while I was sat on my train waiting to set off from the station, and it was such a quick and...

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Sarah Bennett – Spring at Lavender Bay

I’m in two minds over how to review this book – on one hand, I read the book in just a few hours and I felt really invested in how Beth’s story would turn out. But what was really jarring for me was that there were so many editorial mistakes that I kept being jolted out of the flow of the story because either the sentence didn’t make sense or a spelling mistake meant my brain had to try and process what was being said...

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Rainbow Rowell – Fangirl

It would be really easy to judge this book by the title and assume it’s ‘just’ young adult fiction and doesn’t have a serious point. But although this might be young adult fiction, it showed that the only way to get through social-anxiety and other mental health problems is to open up to people and let them help you. As you might tell from the title, Cath is a fangirl, introverted and in love with the Simon Snow...

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Sarah Turner – The Unmumsy Mum

It’s been ages since I read anything, so I really needed to find a light-hearted book to get me back into the swing of things. And this one was perfect (although not as light-hearted as I’d imagined). I’ve been following Sarah on Instagram for a few years, so I have seen what her posts are like, and her book was kind of an extension of that. Funny most of the time, but interspersed with real honest moments that were...

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She Reads Truth – Job: Suffering and the God who speaks

I have read many SRT plans before using the app on my phone, but this was the first time I’ve bought one of their study books to use. I had read online that their study books didn’t contain as much information as the reading plans online – the ones in the app/online come with a mini devotional for each reading and also a discussion area so you can leave comments and talk to other ‘Shes’. So I was really unsure...

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Ann Weisgarber – The Glovemaker

For our anniversary, Cameron and I decided to start a new tradition where we will buy each other books related to whatever the anniversary is supposed to be represented by that year. Apparently, year 2 is cotton, so we spend a good hour in Waterstones in Oban looking for books that were cotton related. For Cameron, I bought the Underground Railroad (about cotton plantations and the slave trade), and he bought me this beautiful looking book...

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Bill Clinton & James Patterson – The President is Missing

It’s been quite a while since I listened to an audiobook, but over the last week, Cameron and I have been on our anniversary holiday to Scotland which has involved a LOT of driving. Rather than listen to the same music over and over again, we decided that we’d spend the time listening to a book instead, and since this one was on discount (and was one of the hardbacks that Cameron already had on his shelf), why not?! Narrated...

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Christina Dalcher – Vox

Wow. Just Wow. This book was totally chilling. Set in the not too distant future, women’s rights have been completely stripped away. No bank accounts, no jobs, they are forced to stay at home like a good wife should. But worst of all, they are limited to 100 words a day. Go over that limit and they receive an electric shock. Or should I say shocks. Of increasing violence for every word they say too much. And this isn’t just women...

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Brandon Sanderson – Mistborn: Secret History

Oh how I wish I had time for a Mistborn re-read. After reading this short novella, it really made me want to read again the stories of Vin and Kelsier. I think the second set of Mistborn books would also have made a bit more sense having read this novella too. In this book, we mainly follow Kelsier as he seeks to prevent Ruin from taking control. Kelsier is trapped in the in-between, not alive, but not quite yet dead either. I can’t...

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Fiona Lloyd - The Diary of a (Trying to be Holy) Mum

Fiona Lloyd – The Diary of a (Trying to be Holy) Mum

I picked this book up on our church book stall a little while ago – the cover caught my eye – I’ve always liked diary style books. At first, I thought it was a biography style book, but some of the characters in the book were such caricatures of characters you see in a church that I thought either it can’t be real, or the author is brave to be naming them in her book! Having no children, I can’t really...

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Vanessa Curtis – The Earth is Singing

Every once in a while, you read a book that completely breaks you. And this was it for me. I read this book in one train journey from London to Leeds, and I was full out crying on the train from the horrors that were written inside. I cried because these horrors were real. Things that actually happened less than 2 generations ago. Things that should not be forgotten, lest we repeat them. The book follows a young girl called Hanna, who...

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Jojo Moyes – Still Me

Ah, Louisa Clark. I’ve missed you. I absolutely loved Me Before You and kinda enjoyed the follow up, After You. Did we need a trilogy? No. Would I have been happy if Moyes had stopped after the first book? Yes. But am I happy to finish reading about Louisa and that she finally got her happy ending? Very much so. And I was also glad that the happy ending wasn’t exactly what I imagined it would be – Louisa still had plenty...

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Camille Pagán – I’m Fine and Neither Are You

I got this book a month before it’s scheduled release date through the Amazon First Reads programme (if you have Amazon Prime, and you don’t know what this is, check it out – free books!). It jumped out at me from the list of six books because the blurb looked quite intriguing: A shocking tragedy reveals that Jenny’s life is far from perfect. Reeling, Penelope vows to stop keeping the peace and finally deal with the...

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Matt Dunn – 13 Dates

It’s been a while since I read anything at all, and I’m stuck halfway through a couple of epic books, so I needed something light to kick-start my reading habit again. I borrowed this book for free from the Amazon Prime Reading section, and I was quite looking forward to something a bit cosy and heart warming. Unfortunately, I couldn’t really find any kind of empathy for either of the main characters which really spoilt my...

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Charlie N. Holmberg – Smoke & Summons

Holmberg has been one of my favourite authors since I read The Paper Magician, and when this book was released a month early as part of the Amazon Prime First Reads programme, I was really excited! I immediately fell in love with Sandis, the main character. She’s a young woman who was kidnapped at a young age and is now kept as a vessel for a fiery power called Ireth, at the bidding of her master. She only sees daylight when she’s...

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Carrie Hope Fletcher – All That She Can See

I’ve been looking forward to reading this book ever since I bought it last year and added it to my growing TBR list. It’s taken a while to get to the top of that list, and I do have mixed feelings about it. There’s no doubt that this is a feel-good book. Cherry is a baker who can see other people’s bad feelings. And she uses her special talents as a baker to make them cakes with an added ingredient to cure their...

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The Cactus – Sarah Haywood

When I picked up this book in Waterstones, it was with a caption card that compared it to the likes of The Rosie Project, which is a book I completely fell in love with. And while I can kind of see why you would compare them because of their protagonists, this book fell way short of the mark for me. “In Susan we find a character as exasperating and delightful as The Rosie Project’s Don Tillman.”. Exasperating, yes...

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Jimmy Dodd & Larry Magnuson – Pastors are People Too

I remember when I first bought this book, our Vicar was a few months into his new role in our Church, and he shared a link to it on Facebook. I bought it thinking that it sounded interesting, but it just never popped to the top of my reading list. Probably not helped by the uninspiring cover, I never got around to it. But I’m now quite sad that I didn’t – I know now that there’s a reason why our Vicar probably shared...

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Satya Nadella – Hit Refresh

Satya Nadella became CEO of Microsoft at a time when Microsoft was definitely on a downwards slide. This book chronicles his efforts to turn around the fortunes of the company, starting with a complete shift in culture which didn’t always go down too well with the employees. But rewind back a bit, and the book starts with Nadella’s life growing up in India and how he ended up coming to America for a job in tech. He talks about the...

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