Saturday, 14 January 2017

Bookshelf: January 2017

Happy 2017! I know it's been a while since I last posted, but I'm hoping to make things a little more regular this year. I had a lovely holiday season, traveling the UK with my Mum. After ten days in London, full of long walks and sightseeing, we drove up through some beautiful towns and cities: Frome, Bath, Castle Combe, The Mumbles, Castleton, York, Haworth, Ambleside, Keswick and Windermere. We finished the road trip in Edinburgh, where I have just started my semester abroad (classes commence Monday). I'll be sure to share some photographs soon!

I love what I have seen of the city so far, and I've spent the last couple of days decorating my room and making sure it can serve as a cozy getaway from classes and the bustling city streets. Before classes start, I have also been taking advantage of my free time to do some reading! I set a Goodreads goal of 75 books this year (including school texts), and I am off to a good start. Without further ado, here are some of the books I've read recently, as well as some that I have next on my list.


According to Yes by Dawn French
I have mixed feelings about this one. I love Dawn French (Vicar of Dibley, anyone??) but somehow this story just didn't appeal to me. The novel tells the story of Rosie Kitto, a 38 year-old woman from Cornwall who moves to NYC to nanny two young boys. Chaos ensues when she develops relationships with the men of the family (yes, more than one). It's predictable and a little boring in parts, and there are also many editorial mistakes. That said, it is nicely fluffy and a good one to breeze through if you fancy something light.

Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
I really enjoyed this novel. I read Fangirl last year, also by Rowell, and liked that too. This is not a monumental or life-changing read, that's for sure, but it is well written and explores some complex themes effectively. The chemistry between characters is believable, and I had a great time reading it.

Not pictured: The One Plus One by Jojo Moyes
I have mixed feelings about Moyes's Me Before You, but I categorically loved The One Plus One. The story follows Jess, a young single mother of two, and Ed, a wealthy businessman in the center of a major scandal. It's not for everyone, as it's full of family drama and very realistic problems, but so many of Jess's issues resonated with me and I really enjoyed flipping through this novel (it took me less than 24 hours!) The romance between Jess and Ed was nicely done, and I particularly liked that the narrator is constantly changing, but the story is grounded in the perspective of Tanzie, the 11 year-old math prodigy daughter of Jess. I highly recommend it!

Voyager by Diana Gabaldon (almost finished!)
How fitting, considering I've just started my studies in Scotland. I picked this up immediately after finishing Dragonfly in Amber, and this is just as gripping. Without any spoilers, Claire and Jamie's story picks up in a beautiful way, and I have loved seeing how they handle their next adventures.


Britt-Marie Was Here by Frederik Backman
I've had Backman's A Man Called Ove on my list since I finished The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry. Something to do with the fact that I am actually a grandma inside a 20 year-old body and I like to read stories about older folks. ??? Anyways, my mum read this one and really loved it, so she passed it on to me.

The Revolving Door of Life by Alexander McCall-Smith
An Edinburgh author! A must read now that I'm here. I have actually never read any McCall-Smith but I did enjoy the TV adaptation of his No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series, so here's hoping this one is just as fun.

Victoria by Daisy Goodwin
Another that Mum left for me. When she was reading this, she couldn't stop talking about how great the dialogue is, so I am excited to pick this up. I've also heard the TV show is pretty fantastic!

Not Quite Nice by Celia Imrie
Next on my list, I think I'll start it tonight! I love love love Celia Imrie's acting work, and only just found out that she is also a novelist. This seems to be about some middle aged women escaping to Southern France after a scandal/crime of some kind. Sounds like fun.

What have you enjoyed lately, and what's next on your list?

x B


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