Lemony Snicket – The Wide Window

After escaping from the clutches of Count Olaf yet again, but forced to leave Uncle Monty’s house by his unfortunate demise, the Baudelaire children find themselves on Damocles dock, being put into a taxi by Mr Poe to take them to their Aunt Josephine’s house overlooking Lake Lachrymose. The children are not hopeful that she will be a better guardian than Uncle Monty, and unfortunately it’s looks like they may be right. Because...

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Lemony Snicket – The Reptile Room

Before reading this book, I looked at some of the reviews on Goodreads and it seems like a lot of people complaining that this book (and the series) are quite similar to the first book. Well, its a children’s book and the whole series is devoted to Count Olaf trying to get his hands on the Baudelaire children, so obviously they’re going to be slightly similar. But I have no problem with that. You know kind-of what the plot is going...

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Lemony Snicket – The Bad Beginning

These books take me back to my childhood, we read them as a family as they came out, but I’m not sure now that I ever actually reached the end of the series. As the Netflix series has just been released (which is great by the way), I thought I’d take the chance to read them all again. The Baudelaire children might be the unluckiest children in the world, and we are introduced to them in this first book of the thirteen. We’re...

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Anne Brontë – Agnes Grey

I realised recently that I have never read anything by Anne Brontë, and I decided that I had to remedy that situation. She seems to be the most overlooked of the Brontë sisters, hidden away behind her sister’s bigger novels; Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights. But I’m not entirely sure why, as I found this book utterly delightful. You can tell more from this book than from Charlotte or Emily that the Brontë’s were daughters of...

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C.S. Lewis – The Problem of Pain

For centuries people have been tormented by one question above all: If God is good and all-powerful, why does he allow his creatures to suffer pain? This is the question that C.S. Lewis is attempting to answer in this book, The Problem of Pain. And if you’ve ever read a C.S. Lewis book before, you’ll know that he is very good about writing the book he wants to write (unlike the last book I read). Splitting the book up into small...

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Todd Hasak-Lowy – Me Being Me Is Exactly As Insane As You Being You

I had such high hopes for this book as it looked like quite an interesting idea – a book written entirely in lists. But at some point, I put the book down and didn’t pick it up again for 8 months, so it definitely left me feeling cold. In fact, I only picked it up again because I was fed up of seeing it in my ‘Currently Reading’ list on Goodreads, and by the end it felt more like a hard slog than an enjoyable...

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Sue Perkins – Spectacles

I didn’t really know much about Sue Perkins apart from the things I’ve seen her in on TV, but this book was being advertised on Kindle at 99p, and as I had really enjoyed the things I’d seen her in, I thought it would be an interesting read. And I wasn’t disappointed. My reading of this book was a bit disjointed, reading it on the bus when it was busy and I couldn’t get my book out, or in the time waiting for the...

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Barney Norris – Five Rivers Met On A Wooded Plain

First book of 2017! I’ve just set up my Goodreads reading challenge for this year at a lofty 52 books, the same target as 2016, which I managed to fail by a whole 20 books. But I will be better this year, I received so many books for Christmas that I’m desperate to read and I’m determined that I will read them all! Unfortunately, I was a little disappointed with the book I picked as my first. When I read the blurb in...

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Anna Kendrick – Scrappy Little Nobody

This book encompasses two things that I love. Autobiographies and Anna Kendrick. Since I first saw her in Twilight (don’t judge), I’ve loved her as an actress, and I’ve always thought she’s a very relateable person and very funny (especially on Twitter). Thankfully, her book didn’t spoil the picture of her that I’d created in my mind, I laughed out loud constantly and hard. She’s brutally honest the...

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Paula Hawkins – The Girl on the Train

I can’t believe I’m so far behind the trend on this book. I heard everyone raving about it when it first came out, and I was in the middle of other books so I didn’t read it. Then the film came out, and I still didn’t read it. And by the time I finally got around to reading it, the only covers they had left for the book were the movie-tie-in covers, which I always hate to buy! But cover snobbery aside, I LOVED this book...

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Emma Jane Kirby – The Optician of Lampedusa

For all those people who think that ‘immigrants are coming over here to get our benefits and our jobs’. For all those people who say that they are stupid to risk their lives coming over here. For all those people who think the migrant crisis can be ignored. For all those people who couldn’t care less. This book is for you. And it is essential reading. For this book is not an easy read. It’s not a nice fluffy bedtime...

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Denise Grover Swank - The Substitute

Denise Grover Swank – The Substitute

I have very mixed feelings about this book. I decided to read it on a whim while I was stuck in traffic on a bus and I’d forgotten to bring my paperback with me, so I quickly loaded up the top free books list on the Kindle app, and the cover for this one jumped out at me as I’m currently preparing for my wedding next year. In many ways, this was the perfect romantic story. But the cynical part of me just couldn’t help scoffing...

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Jennifer Niven – All the Bright Places

I don’t know if I even have the words within me to describe how beautifully this book was written, and how much it left my emotions tied in knots after being repeatedly wrung through a wringer. Finch and Violet meet at the top of the school bell tower, both perilously close to the edge, both physically and mentally. And after Finch talks Violet down from the railings, it seems like he might be her lifeline and the only one capable of...

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Lisa Williamson – The Art of Being Normal

After such a terrible last book, I needed something to perk me up. And this book was brilliant. Not the kind of book I usually read, but something about it just made me pick it up in the supermarket and I’m so glad I did. The book runs from two parallel perspectives; David, who longs to be a girl; and Leo, who longs to be invisible. They’re both hiding secrets from their families and the world in general, but may have more in common...

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Logan Byrne – Banded

Wow. Seriously, just wow. It’s not often that I give a book a 1 star rating as I’m usually quite a good judge of what books I will enjoy reading, but I judged this one way off. I just cringed most of the way through as it was so blatantly a rip-off of other books, most obviously Divergent. Oh, it’s a society where everyone lives in different zones depending on their abilities and contribution to society? Stalwart (strength)...

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Milly Johnson – The Wedding Dress

I decided to read this as it combines my favourite author with my current occupation – weddings! Unfortunately, I kind of wish I hadn’t read the set of three short stories. It carries on from White Wedding, and although I wanted to know more about the characters when I finished reading that, I think this book was a little bit of a disappointment. Not in writing, Milly Johnson doesn’t disappoint like that, just that the three...

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J.K. Rowling – Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Well I can’t really say anything at all about this book as I really don’t want to risk posting an accidental spoiler, so all I’ll say is that Rowling has hit the nail on the head once again. I’ve never really read a script before so I was a little worried that the format would get in the way and prevent me from really getting into the story, but I needn’t have worried, I was fully absorbed from page one, most of the...

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Jojo Moyes – After You

I had built this book up so much after how much I loved Me Before You, but sadly, I have to say it disappointed me. It’s taken me almost a month to read it, which is unusual and a sign of how I wasn’t completely absorbed. I just couldn’t get into the first half of the book at all, it seemed very slow and I didn’t feel the same connection to Louisa as I felt when reading Me Before You. The second half of the book did...

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Robert Seethaler – A Whole Life

You know you’ve found yourself a keeper when your fiancé goes to London and you say ‘bring me back a souvenir’, and rather than bring you back some Union Jack emblazoned tat, he goes to the British Library and buys you a book and some bookmarks – he knows me so well! This was one of those rare books that was so beautifully written that I was able to resist the urge to read it all in one go because I couldn’t bear...

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Giovanna Fletcher - Billy and Me

Giovanna Fletcher – Billy and Me

I’ve been following Giovanna Fletcher on Twitter and Instagram for quite some time, but never got around to reading her books. But as I was still in hospital when I finished reading Me Before You, I decided to buy this on Kindle to keep me occupied. And a good decision it turned out to be! I worried a little at the start as the writing style seemed a bit simplistic, but this improved throughout the book and I soon didn’t notice the...

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Nataša Dragnić – Every Day, Every Hour

Before I start, a little book-related rant, which will probably make you all think I’m slightly crazy! I’m never a fan of books that remove the blurb from the back and fill it with reviews instead, relegating the blurb to the inside cover. If I wanted to read praise for your book, I’d go online and look at reviews, I just want to know what the book is about!!! Am I just crazy to find this annoying? It doesn’t seem to...

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