Autumn TBR

Hi Readers

Finally. Autumn has begun. Time for hot chocolate, jumpers and rainy days in cosying up with a book. 

Here’s a list of all the books I want to read, and yes, I’m aware how insanely ambitious this is.

  • The Night Watch by Sarah Waters
  • The Secret History by Donna Tartt
  • Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
  • It by Stephen King
  • First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Clair North
  • A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
  • North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell
  • Villette by Charlotte Bronte
  • Along Came a Spider by James Patterson
  • Clash of Kings by George R.R. Martin
  • The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitebread
  • Tin Man by Sarah Winman
  • Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
  • They Both Die in the End by Adam Silvera

Let me know if you’ve read any of these. I’m so excited for all of them. 

Thanks for reading

Jess X

A Month of Reading: August 2017

Hi Readers

So. August happened. I read a good amount of books, but I can’t say many of those books were very good. 

This summer I wanted to find a new favourite. I wanted to fall in love with a book. But honestly most of them were very disappointing. 

This month I read 9 books and 1/2 of three others. Here they are:

Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin – 84/100 ****

I’ve been loving the new season so much that whenever a new episode finished I craved more. So, I’ve decided to slowly read the series, in the hopes that when the next book is finally published I can read it along with everyone else. This one was a reread and I loved it more the second time. 

Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia – 35/100 **

This was a random read and while it was quick and cute I kind of wish I hadn’t bothered. I found it all to be very bland and very forgetful.

The Lost Daughter by Elena Ferrante – 50/100 ***

I’ve now read all of Ferrante’s books and while none of them compare to her Neapolitan series (and after reading these I wonder if anything ever will) I do still love how she’s able to capture life in words. 

Far From the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy – 37/100 **

I thought I was enjoying this but when I finished it I kind of looked at it and thought ‘no, I didn’t enjoy one minute with it.’ Bathsheba is one of those characters who had so much promise but then by the end you just wanted to shake her and say ‘I told you so.’

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro – 60/100 ***

Such a disappointment (but not the biggest one of this month.) It started off so strongly but then it just kept meandering about things that to me just weren’t as interesting as the mystery. I may do a full book review of this soon.

I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith – 35/100 **

I liked it until they started becoming boy obsessed. Then, Cassandra lost all her intelligence (and there wasn’t much there to begin with) and lost all my attention (again, wasn’t much there to begin with.) Also, the ending sucked. 

The Accidental Tourist by Anne Tyler – 45/100 ***

I don’t know, I feel like this book doesn’t have a lot going for it. I was expecting more travel. 

The Beginning of the World in the Middle of the Night by Jen Campbell – 75/100 ****

This was an ARC I got from the publisher so a review will be coming soon. But heads up, you should definitely put this on your anticipated reads list.


Books I Started But Didn’t Finish:

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel: The most disappointing read ever. I feel like I haven’t been reading the same book as everyone else because I don’t get it. The characters were dull and the plot was dull. I got over 200 pages in and nothing happened (other than the end of the world which we basically skipped over completely.) 

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen: I had a random urge to read some Jane Austen but I didn’t quite finish it. Maybe I will this month but seeing as I’ve already reread it this year I’m not too worried. 

Clash of Kings by George R.R. Martin: I’m only a few chapters in so I’m going to continue reading this in September, for sure. Loving it. 

So that was what I read in the underwhelming month of August. 

Thanks for reading

Jess X

Day Out at Anglesey Abbey

Hi Readers

Today’s post is a non-book related one. Last week I took a trip around Bury-St Edmunds and Anglesey Abbey and had a lovely day with the parents and wanted to blog about my mini summer adventure.

I’m not much of a traveller. I get very anxious about going to new places and I had never been to Bury St Edmunds before. However, when I got there I was pleasantly surprised.

We went on the day of the Market and had a lovely stroll through all the stalls. I didn’t buy anything but the wonderful smells from the bakery counters was enough to make my mouth water.

The town itself is packed with so many unique and quirky shops and cafe’s, one in particular was a shop called Pocket Watches and Petticoats. It was a clothes store that sold 1940’s woman’s fashion and it just transported you. It had an old working tv and the clothes were beautiful.

There was also the ARC shopping centre, which has all the shops you could ever need, including a wonderfully large Waterstones which I spent maybe half an hour in. Honestly I could have stayed in Bury St Edmunds all day but we wanted to get to Anglesey Abbey in time for lunch.


When we got there I was so worried because the car park was so full and I hate crowds. But the place was so huge that once you enter the walks it’s so quiet and you could go ages without seeing another soul.

The first thing we did was find a bench to have our picnic and I’ve never had a more lovely one. I had a chicken and pasta salad (if you were interested) but it’s the fact that Anglesey Abbey is so peaceful and relaxing. All of the anxiety I had been feeling about the day went away.


We went on a few of the walks, explored the gardens and had a look around the working mill (which you can actually buy the flour from in the gift shop.)


The house itself was beautiful and surprisingly modern. I love how relaxed it was. You could sit down on the couches, read a book in the library and take pictures. This house also has a lot of famous art which I’m not particularly interested in but a couple even I had to admire.


I hope you all had a lovely Summer.

Thanks for reading,

Jess X

August Book Haul

Hi Readers

This is my birthday month so while I didn’t actually get anything physical for my birthday (apart from the most amazing chocolate Dairy Milk Oreo Crunch, you all have to try it) I did get some money from my lovely relatives. So of course I bought books with it.

Station Eleven: Okay. I’ve heard so much great things about this. I’ve started it. And I’m not liking it. I’m putting it down for now. Will pick up again later. 

A Tree Grows In Brooklyn by Betty Smith: This is a classic coming-of-age novel that I am very excited to read.

How To Stop Time by Matt Haig: I got an earc of this and reviewed it months ago (which you can find here) but I now finally own a finished copy of this beautiful book.

The Beginning of the World in the Middle of the Night by Jen Campbell: I was very excited when this came in the mail. This was sent to me by the publisher for review and comes out in November. 

The Secret History by Donna Tartt: I now own three of her books and haven’t read any. But that’s fine because I have a feeling I’m going to love this one. 

The Story of a New Name by Elena Ferrante: You all know how much I love this series but I borrowed the last three from the library so I’m now slowly purchasing the books for my personal library. 


Let me know if you’ve read any of these. 

Thanks for reading

Jess X



Help Me Decide What To Read This Bank Holiday!

Hi Readers

I’m having a reading crisis. I’ve not been liking ANYTHING I’ve read atm and now it’s bank holiday and I am determined to find a new favourite book. 

The weathers going to be glorious so I plan on sitting outside with a book. The only thing is, I can’t decide what book that should be!

I have 5 maybe’s. Here they are:

I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith
A Tree Grows In Brooklyn by Betty Smith
The Past by Tessa Hadley
The Accidental Tourist by Anne Tyler
Cats Eye by Margaret Atwood

Or, if you have any summer-y books recommendations please let me know! 

Thanks for reading

Jess X

Books From Before I Started Blogging

Note: Top 5 Wednesday was created by GingerReadsLainey and is hosted by ThoughtsonTomes on the Goodreads Group.


Hi Readers

Today’s T5W topic is top 5 books I read before I started blogging. I have always been a big reader but I definitely never read as much as I do now. I was 14 when I first started watching booktube so most of these are children’s books.

5. My Sister Jodie – Jacqueline Wilson: I loved JW as a kid. 

4. The Hunger Games – Suzanne Collins: I found this because T-Swift did a song for the movie.

3. Secret Garden – Frances Hodgsen Burnett: One of my favourite childhood books.

2. Shadow Forest – Matt Haig: I read this during school. My first Matt Haig book. 

1.  Harry Potter (obvs) – J.K. Rowling: I’d read these multiple times before finding booktube.

Thanks for reading,

Jess X



Revisiting Old Hauls #1

Hi Readers

Inspired by BooksandLala.

This is the beginning of a series of blog posts where I revisit old book hauls and see what I’ve read, what I’ve unhauled and what I have yet to read.

I’ve had this blog for almost three years but I’ve been hauling books online for 5 years (although the older ones are no longer available because 14 year old Jess was embarrassing.)

I’m going to start off with combining two book hauls. The first is my January book haul from 2014:

  • Crown of Midnight – Sarah J. Maas: READ
  • Legend Trilogy – Marie Lu: READ
  • More Than This – Patrick Ness: READ
  • The Elite – Kiera Cass: READ
  • Daughter of Smoke and Bone – Laini Taylor: READ
  • Unbecoming of Mara Dyer – Michelle Hodkin: READ
  • Wonder – R.J. Palacio: READ
  • Shadowhunters Codex – Cassandra Clare: READ

And these are from my February/March book haul from 2014.

  • Unite Me & Ignite Me – Tahereh Mafi: READ
  • Maze Runner – James Dashner: READ
  • Knife of Never Letting Go – Patrick Ness: TBR
  • Tempest – Julie Cross: Unhauled
  • Magic Study – Maria V. Snyder: TBR
  • Storm Glass – Maria V. Snyder: TBR
  • Through the Ever Night – Veronica Ross: Unhauled
  • The Hobbit – J.R.R. Tolkien: READ
  • It’s Kind of a Funny Story – Nick Vizzini: READ
  • Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac – Gabrielle Zevin: READ
  • Everyday – David Levithan: READ
  • Game of Thrones – George R.R. Martin: READ
  • Cuckoos Calling – Robert Galbraith: READ

We’re actually starting off really well in terms of books I’ve read. It’s definitely not as bad as I thought it was. Overall we have:

READ: 19
TBR: 3
Unhauled: 2

Let me know if you think this series is a good idea. 

Thanks for reading, 

Jess X