Book Haul: SO MANY CLASSICS! (And then some.)

Hello Guys,

Over the past few months I have bought a fare amount of books. Most of them are from charity shops (as always) but I also have a couple of new releases that I couldn’t resist. I’m so excited to read all of these but if you see a particular one you think I should read straight away let me know!

The Classics

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Villette by Charlotte Bronte ~ I recently read  Jane Eyre by the same author and it is one of the best classic novels I have ever read and now I really want to read more of the Bronte sisters works. Villette has been called Charlottes most accomplished works and apparently a lot of it was inspired by her own life.

Watership Down by Richard Adams ~ This is such a famous novel yet I only first heard about it from beauty vlogger Tanya Burr. I’m honestly not sure what it’s about but I have seen nothing negative about it and I’m pretty sure the main character is a rabbit so… I’m sold. 

Wuthering Heights Emily Bronte ~ Like I said earlier I really want to read more of the bronte sisters works and this is definitely one of the more famous ones. I have no idea when I’ll get to this but I saw this beautiful Penguin Library edition for 50p and honestly who could resist that?

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott ~ This is one of those rare occasions in a book haul where I can say I’ve already read this one. I got this a couple of weeks ago in a charity shop and I couldn’t stop looking at it on my shelf so I just had to read it straight away. This is one of those classic books I have heard about my entire life and I’m so happy I finally got around to reading it. I’ll let you know what I thought in my Month of Reading post. 

Les Miserables V1 & V2 by Victor Hugo ~ I have recently become obsessed with the famous broadway musical, not just the songs but the story and I’ve been really curious about what the original story is like. I’m expecting it to be very different but I’m excited to read a book set in the French revolution.

Forgotten Voices of the Great War by Max Arthur ~ This is actually a non-fiction book but I wanted to make the stacks of books equal in size (hehe.) This is a collection of diary entries and memoirs of men in the trenches during the first world war. Not the happiest topic to read about but a very important one that I have always been curious about. 

The ‘And Then Some’

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The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson ~ I love Morgan Matson books. In my eyes, she is the queen of summer contemporary and if you haven’t read any of her books you need to go do that right now. This is her latest release and I’m so excited to read it soon. Hopefully it’s going to be sunny this weekend (cause Matson + sun = happiness.)

A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas ~ This is the other new release I bought and honestly I was kind of hesitant to buy this. I did like the first one and it’s connections to Beauty and the Beast but I’m really iffy about so many people shipping Feyre with Rhysand. I didn’t like some of the things he did to her in the first and I don’t like that everyone is actually supporting a relationship between them despite it. But there are people who are saying this is their favourite Maas novel yet so that made me more curious (plus it was 3 for £10 on amazon.)

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer ~ I have heard a lot of great things about this book, especially from booktuber Raeleen (PadfootandProngs07.) 

Cateye by Margaret Atwood ~ I have read her famous novel Handmaids Tale and it was such an interesting read that I really want to read more of her works.This sounded right up my alley as it sounded mysterious and drama filled. 

Hero of Ages by Brandon Sanderson ~ Even though I still haven’t finished The Final Empire I saw this for really cheap online for practically brand new and thought ‘why not?’ This is the last in the Mistborn trilogy which basically everyone loves and I can’t wait to get around to reading it. 

So those are all the books I have bought in the last few months. Let me know if you’ve read any of these and what you thought. 

Thanks for reading

Jess xxx

REVIEW: The Heir & The Crown ~ Kiera Cass

(Warning, spoilers for the first 3 books in the Selection series.)

IMG_2562Published: May 2015 & 2016

Source: BD & Netgalley

Pages: (Heir) 342  (Crown) 279

Avg. Goodreads Rating: (Heir) 3.90                                                                  (Crown) 3.94

My Rating: (Heir) 54% 3 Stars                             (Crown) 38% 2 Stars

Hello Guys

So, The Selection series has finally come to an end (maybe) (most probably) (this is it right?) and while I wasn’t one of those people who were frustrated with Kiera for continuing the series after it originally being a trilogy, I have to say I am glad it’s over. I really did enjoy the first three books in this series and was actually quite excited to know that we would be getting another two books that follows Maxons and Americas daughter through her own Selection. But when I actually read them I was so disappointed.

These have the same feel as the original trilogy, they’re fun and quick reads with love octagons and a sprinkle of politics so they could be marketed as dystopia. Perfect for fans of The Bachelor with a royal twist. But having now finished this added on duology all I can think is ‘what was the point?’

Throughout this series one thing I was really hoping for was great character development from our main character Eadlyn. Mainly because in the first book she was a rude and bitchy brat who was completely unaware of other peoples problems because she was to focused on her own. While she herself does acknowledge this later on she never actually suffers any consequences and everyone just makes excuses for her because ‘she’s a princess, she has a lot going on.’

When I finished reading The Heir I knew I would have a lot of problems with The Crown. These books are all relatively the same size (short) and because there was so little progress in The Heir I thought there was going to be too much that had to be resolved in The Crown. Unfortunately my prediction was right. To me the pacing was completely off and proclamations of love happened very suddenly with no real build up. Also, the worst and probably most frustrating thing about this book was there were a lot of things rushed or left completely unresolved, especially the political side of things.

So overall I would still recommend the first three selection books, especially if you are fans of reality show ‘The Bachelor,’ but these last two novels, while entertaining, were not well written or well developed novels.

Thanks for reading

Jess xxx

REVIEW: The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath

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Published: January 1963

Source: Charity Shop

Pages: 234

Goodreads Average Rating: 3.97

My Rating: 67% (3 Stars)

 

Hello Guys

I recently read The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath and I was really excited/nervous about starting this book. Excited because I have heard a lot about Sylvia Plath before and have actually read and enjoyed a couple of her poems, so I was very interested in reading her only novel. Nervous because I was afraid that a lot of it would blow right over my head and I would miss a lot of important details that I would’ve otherwise recognised had I been reading and analysing it in a classroom. Unfortunately I do feel like that happened.

This book tells the story of Esther, a girl who dreams of being a poet and has a lot of things going for her. She graduates college, gets invited to New York for a trip that could boost start her career. She has men interested in her and supportive friends, but she is severely depressed. She finds the ordinary day to day life more difficult than others, she is overwhelmed by the mere thought of the future and underwhelmed by many of its prospects. Her depression soon turns into thoughts of suicide.

It being a book about mental illness, it was always going to be a difficult read. There were no zombies or vampires out to kill anyone, there were no guns aimed at the opposite side or evil villains out to get her. This girls worst enemy was her own mind, and that was so much more terrifying to read.

Before going into this book I did know a little about Sylvia Plath and her own battle with mental illness and I could definitely make that connection between the author and the fictional character. It seemed to me she wrote this book almost semi-biographically as it felt so honest. It wasn’t like I was reading the National Health Service website like I so often feel when I read mental health books. The way she described depression was personal, the way it made Esther feel and think was only something a person who had experienced those thoughts could write about. While it made me sad when I realised this I can’t help but thank Sylvia Plath for sharing this book with the world.

While I would love to lie to you and say I didn’t relate to this book at all, this review just wouldn’t feel honest/complete. So yes, I related to Esther in a lot of ways. At times I felt Sylvia had actually dug into my own mind before writing this book (especially when my home town was mentioned, which has never ever happened before.) However I don’t feel like that’s out of the ordinary. Everybody has their ‘Fig Tree’ and everybody deals with it differently. Some take it in their stride and some are crippled by the fear of the unknown.

This book is eye opening and terrifying. To anyone who doesn’t understand how someone could possibly become mentally ill or thinks they’re alone in this, I urge you to read this book. It made my heart pound and head spin and while it’s not a perfect book it is a true accomplishment.

Thanks for reading

Jess xxx

 

Weekend Reads

Hello Guys!

This weekend I’m sure I’m going to get a lot of reading done…seeing as using my laptop is out of the question thanks to my charger breaking. While I am devistated that I won’t be able to watch an episode of Gilmore Girls or Masterchef AU until sometime next week, this does mean I’ll have a lot of spare time in which I’ll have no choice but to dedicate it to reading. 

So, I plan on reading Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. I have actually been spoiled for one event in this book (thanks Rachel) but I am still looking forward to reading more of this. 


If I am able to finish this I’ll start reading The Crown by Kiera Cass which I was accepted for on NetGalley so Ill also be doing a review on it.

Hopefully these books will get me through the pain of not having a laptop. It’s going to be a tough weekend. 😉

Thanks for reading

Jess xxx

Intimidating TBR Pile

Hello Guys

The Intimidating TBR pile is everywhere at the moment and seeing as I definitely find my TBR quite intimidating I thought it would be the perfect time to share my answers to the questions. 

1) What book have you been unable to finish?

I was so excited to read The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern because everybody described it as the most beautiful thing they had ever read. But in all honesty I found it a little boring. I do still want to finish this I just have to get around to it, and, seeing as it’s been a year since I started it, I’ll probably have to start it again.


2) What book have you yet to read because you just haven’t had the time?

Angels and Demons is a book I’ve had for years but I just never put aside the time to read it. Other books always become a priority. 


3) What book have you yet to read because it’s a sequel?

So many. All of the sequels below I have to reread the first book because I have completely forgotten what happened in them. 

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4) What book have you yet to read because it’s brand new?

The Crown only recently came out and I’m still waiting for my library to say they have it in. I’m number 2 on the reservation list so hopefully it won’t be long before I can finally finish the Selection series. 


5) What book have you yet to read because you read a book by the same author and didn’t enjoy it?

The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen. I read That Summer and I really disliked it. I didn’t like the story or the writing so I’m hesitant in reading anything else by her. 


6) What book have you yet to read because you’re just not in the mood for it?

Like Angels and Demons I have had The Casual Vacancy by J.K Rowling for so long but I am never in the mood for it. I have a feeling I’m going to find it a little boring.


7) What book have you yet to read because it’s humongous?

I have a few for this one…

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8) What book have you yet to read because it was a cover buy that turned out to have poor reviews?

We Are All Completely Besides Ourselves’s cover is so beautiful and it caught my eye everytime I went to the bookstore but now it seems like a lot of people have actually been disappointed by this book and when I started it I did find it a little boring. So sad.


9) What is the most intimidating book in your TBR pile?

This is such a hard question! I think I’m going to say Great Expectations. Not because I find the book itself intimidating but it will be my first real venture into Dickens’s world and if I like it a lot of big scary books are going to make their way onto my tbr like Bleak House and David Copperfield.


So those are all my answers. I have to say I am really excited about these intimidating books. I just have to build up the courage to read the 😛

Thanks for reading

Jess xxx

A Month Of Reading: April

Hello Guys!

So April was a rubbish reading month for me. I just did not feel like reading and honestly I still don’t. I only read 1 book (from beginning to end) but I did start to read a few and finish a book I’ve been in the middle of for months.

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The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

This was the only book I read from start to finish and I did really love this book. I’ve actually done a full review of this book so if you want to know my in-depth thoughts on it I’ll link it here. I will just say that I found this to be a powerful and important story that I would definitely recommend to you.

Never Fade by Alexandra Bracken

It has taken me so long to finish this book but I finally got round to it during Deweys 24hour readathon. I honestly didn’t really enjoy this book. I think YA dystopias as a whole just aren’t enjoyable to me any more but I am determined to finish this trilogy… mainly because my parents got me the entire trilogy for christmas 2 years ago.


These ones I only started reading so I’m just going to briefly mention them.

The Final Empire: I think I might finish this in May but I’m not sure when. I’ve read 54 pages so far.

We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves: I just found the beginning of this really boring and thought it probably wasn’t the best thing to read to try and get myself back into reading. I stopped at around 15 pages.

The Little Princess: I got this from the library because I basically grew up watching the movie, but honestly I found the book really dull in comparison and stopped at around 50 pages.

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire: I basically just read a little bit of this every time I don’t know what to read. I think I read about 50 pages of this before deciding I couldn’t even be bothered to read Harry Potter.

So that’s what I read in April… hopefully May will be better (but probably not.)

Thanks for reading

Jess xxx