Tag: book love

Shelf Control #37 – 15/10/2021

Happy Friday everyone and welcome to my Shelf Control post! Shelf Control is a regular feature here and is a meme run by Lisa at Bookshelf Fantasies. It’s a weekly celebration of the unread books on our shelves. Pick a book you own but haven’t read, write a post about it (suggestions: include what it’s about, why you want to read it, and when you got it), and link up!

For more info on what Shelf Control is all about, check out Lisa’s introductory post.

I’ve been sharing these posts regularly so I can continue to review the books on my TBR and decide if I still want to read them. Over the last couple of years my reading taste has changed. A book on my list, added a couple of years ago, may no longer for me. I have genuinely taken a few books off this list by doing these posts. It’s a productive exercise and gives me some bookish content to share with you. And who knows, by featuring those books I still want to read, maybe I can introduce you to something that will take your fancy as well!

This week’s featured book is : –


Soul Identity – Dennis Batchelder

Goodreads – Soul Identity

You can’t take it with you… but what if you could? Most people believe their souls outlive their bodies. Most people would find an organization that tracks their souls into the future and passes on their banked money and memories compelling. Scott Waverly isn’t like most people. He spends his days finding and fixing computer security holes. And Scott is skeptical of his new client’s claim that they have been calculating and tracking soul identities for almost twenty-six hundred years. Are they running a freaky cult? Or a sophisticated con job? Scott needs to save Soul Identity from an insider attack. Along the way, he discovers the importance of the bridges connecting people’s lives.


My Thoughts…

I’m reading more science-fiction than ever before. It’s a genre I’ve always enjoyed but in the past I tended to read more fantasy. This is something I’m actively looking to change, and this change started a couple of years ago when I started adding more science fiction books to my list. Soul Identity is one of those books. I really like the sound of the book and I don’t think I’ve seen anything like it to date!

This has a lot of elements to it. It seems like one of those books that is very difficult to pigeonhole into a certain genre because it has so many overlaps. There is an element of mystery here, perhaps even crime. Because of that though, I’m confident that I’ll enjoy it and that many others will too! I enjoy most genres and so something in this book will appeal to me.

Have you read Soul Identity? Would you recommend it? As always I would love to know!

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Monthly Wrap-Up – September 2021

Hello everyone and welcome to today’s wrap up post for September 2021.

I feel like I’ve achieved a good balance in both reading and other hobbies. For the most part, I’ve been enjoying the books I’ve picked up and I’ve been doing so at a pace that suits me!

 

Books Read

As of my last monthly wrap-up post, I was halfway through Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. I’m pleased to say that I went on to finish this before we were halfway through the month, so pretty quickly. Although it’s the longest book of the series I didn’t let that daunt me in anyway. On the contrary, I was looking forward to picking this up each and every time!

After reading this I decided to pick up something different. I’d been recommended The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S.Lewis to read by my boss at work. I’m obviously familiar with the story, but I’ve never picked up the book itself. I managed to borrow a copy of this electronically from my library and I read it all in one sitting. That wasn’t particularly the plan, but it just worked out that way! Needless to say, I definitely enjoyed it (despite the slightly sexist views of the author dropped in… and not so subtlety).

After that I struggled a little to choose what my next reach should be. I wanted something different again, and so I turned to a genre that I pick up rarely – non-fiction. One of the earliest books on my TBR to read was The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson. I picked this up with enthusiasm and I didn’t take long to read this either! Whilst it’s not a genre I pick up often I admonish myself for that fact. I really do need to pick it up more often and the fact that I enjoyed this book so much is testament to that. Even if you think you have nothing to learn about yourself, you should challenge yourself on that because books like that prove to you that’s not the case at all.

Open till this point I was making really good progress. But alas, I fell a little flat at the end.

The next book I picked up was Girl, Woman, Other by Bernadine Evaristo. I was loaned a copy of this book by my friend who has also read it recently. I really wanted to like it. Truly, I did. I like the idea of it, however, in the practical sense the narrative style and the characters were not working for me at all. I’m sorry to say that I wasn’t enjoying reading this, and that’s ultimately why I made the decision to DNF this. There’s no point trying to force myself to read something if I’m not enjoying it. And it’s not like I didn’t give this a chance either. Whatever it was, this just wasn’t working for me.

Don’t worry though, I haven’t lost my mojo! The reading progress that comes next will fall into next month’s monthly update, but all is well; I haven’t been put off.

Blog Posts

Over the last month I’ve shared a variety of blog posts with you. If you have missed any of my content and see something you like the look of, you will find a handy link here!

 

That’s all from me in today’s wrap up post for September.

What good books you have picked up, or is there anything you’re currently reading that you would recommend? Let me know in the comments!

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Shelf Control #36 – 01/10/2021

Happy Friday everyone and welcome to my Shelf Control post! Shelf Control is a regular feature here and is a meme run by Lisa at Bookshelf Fantasies. It’s a weekly celebration of the unread books on our shelves. Pick a book you own but haven’t read, write a post about it (suggestions: include what it’s about, why you want to read it, and when you got it), and link up!

For more info on what Shelf Control is all about, check out Lisa’s introductory post.

I try to share these posts regularly so I can continue to review the books on my TBR, decide if I still want to read them, or whether my reading case has changed and it’s no longer for me. I have taken a few books off this list by doing these posts. It’s a productive exercise and gives me some bookish content to share with you. And who knows, by featuring those books I still want to read, maybe I can introduce you to something that will take your fancy as well!

This week’s featured book is a non-fiction novel that may not be everyone’s cup of tea. It’s about a difficult subject and touches upon some of the worst human behaviour there is. However, I am looking forward to reading about it. Here is today’s book: –

 

Twelve Years a Slave – Solomon Northup

Goodreads – Twelve Years a Slave

Twelve Years a Slave, sub-title: Narrative of Solomon Northup, citizen of New-York, kidnapped in Washington city in 1841, and rescued in 1853, from a cotton plantation near the Red River in Louisiana, is a memoir by Solomon Northup as told to and edited by David Wilson. It is a slave narrative of a black man who was born free in New York state but kidnapped in Washington, D.C., sold into slavery, and kept in bondage for 12 years in Louisiana. He provided details of slave markets in Washington, D.C. and New Orleans, as well as describing at length cotton and sugar cultivation on major plantations in Louisiana.

 

My Thoughts…

Twelve Years a Slave is not going to be an easy book to read, but that isn’t reason enough not to give it a go. It’s a subject matter that some will find upsetting, whether we like it or not it’s part of our history.

I’m not one to shy away from such topics and so I’m looking forward to giving this a go! In my opinion, it isn’t talked about enough. It’s a dirty subject; it’s a truth that we don’t want to acknowledge about ourselves. I’m a firm believer that we learn from our mistakes and so we must learn from them. The truth is, so many of us can enjoy our freedom today because of what has happened previously. So many have had to endure bondage and fight for their freedom… yet we take it for granted.

Have you read Twelve Years a Slave? Would you recommend it (the book, obviously)? As always I would love to know!

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Shelf Control #35 – 17/09/2021

Happy Friday everyone and welcome to today’s Shelf Control post! Shelf Control is a regular feature here on Reviewsfeed and is a meme run by Lisa at Bookshelf Fantasies. It’s a weekly celebration of the unread books on our shelves. Pick a book you own but haven’t read, write a post about it (suggestions: include what it’s about, why you want to read it, and when you got it), and link up!

For more info on what Shelf Control is all about, check out Lisa’s introductory post.

I try to share these posts regularly so I can continue to review the books on my TBR, decide if I still want to read them, or whether my reading case has changed and it’s no longer for me. I have taken a few books off this list by doing these posts. It’s a productive exercise and gives me some bookish content to share with you. And who knows, by featuring those books I still want to read, maybe I can introduce you to something that will take your fancy as well!

This week’s featured book is a YA novel, which is unusual for me. It’s not very common for me to add these to my TBR, however I’m intrigued by the synopsis! Find out more about this week’s featured book below: –


Daughter of the Burning City – Amanda Foody

Daughter of the Burning City

Goodreads – Daughter of the Burning City

Sixteen-year-old Sorina has spent most of her life within the smoldering borders of the Gomorrah Festival. Yet even among the many unusual members of the traveling circus-city, Sorina stands apart as the only illusion-worker born in hundreds of years. This rare talent allows her to create illusions that others can see, feel and touch, with personalities all their own. Her creations are her family, and together they make up the cast of the Festival’s Freak Show.

But no matter how lifelike they may seem, her illusions are still just that—illusions, and not truly real. Or so she always believed…until one of them is murdered.

Desperate to protect her family, Sorina must track down the culprit and determine how they killed a person who doesn’t actually exist. Her search for answers leads her to the self-proclaimed gossip-worker Luca, and their investigation sends them through a haze of political turmoil and forbidden romance, and into the most sinister corners of the Festival. But as the killer continues murdering Sorina’s illusions one by one, she must unravel the horrifying truth before all of her loved ones disappear.


My Thoughts…

The plot is very unusual, and that’s what caught my eye. Those who read my blog will know I am a huge fan of fantasy, and this book fits that bill. I really like the illusion aspect of the story – and the circus setting. The backdrop already planted the seed that all is not as it seems. Add to that the events in the synopsis, and things are certainly very strange!

The book has a lot of scope with the storyline. I’m interested to see where it will go, because honestly I have no idea. But I like that. Sometimes I enjoy going into a book not really expecting too much. It means that I’m almost guaranteed to be surprised and it will feel unique; like nothing I have read before. Knowing how many books I’ve read, you’ll know that’s no mean feat!

Do you like the sound of this book? Have you read it as if so, would you recommend it? Let me know in the comments!

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Book Review: Steelheart – Brandon Sanderson

It’s been a little while since I shared a book review with you all. So, today’s post is to share my thoughts on Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson.

I am a huge fan, and I really wanted to try this first book of The Reckoners series. To date, I haven’t found a book of Sanderson‘s I don’t like. Maintaining a record like that is a challenge and a very big expectation to live up to. But Steelheart did not disappoint!

 

Steelheart – Brandon Sanderson

Goodreads – Steelheart

Ten years ago, Calamity came. It was a burst in the sky that gave ordinary men and women extraordinary powers. The awed public started calling them Epics. But Epics are no friend of man. With incredible gifts came the desire to rule. And to rule man you must crush his will.

Nobody fights the Epics…nobody but the Reckoners. A shadowy group of ordinary humans, they spend their lives studying Epics, finding their weaknesses, and then assassinating them.

And David wants in. He wants Steelheart — the Epic who is said to be invincible. The Epic who killed David’s father. For years, like the Reckoners, David’s been studying, and planning — and he has something they need. Not an object, but an experience.

He’s seen Steelheart bleed. And he wants revenge.

 

My Thoughts…

When I picked up Steelheart I was safe in the knowledge that I was going to enjoy this book. Not only is Brandon Sanderson becoming one of my favourite authors, but it’s also a genre that I go to again and again! Where fantasy is normally filled with classic tropes and repetitive storylines, I don’t find this at all with Brandon Sanderson‘s writing. It has always amazed me how varied his different narratives and series are. He has so many of them and yet manages to keep them all unique in their own way. They all have similarities in that some form of magic is involved, but the similarities end there!

I enjoyed the narrative of Steelheart as the book is written from the perspective of an underground organisation plotting and killing Epics. Brandon Sanderson builds this epic world over which his ‘superheroes’ (turned overlords) preside, but we get to see the gritty, dark side of things. The world is not perfect with this power. Those who wield it are corrupted. The Reckoners, trying to stop them, hide in the shadows… the dark underbelly of cities. There is something about an author who builds such a fantastic world, to then base the story out of the ‘worst’ parts of it and pull it off.

The Reckoners are the key to the story and as a group, they have a great dynamic. I really enjoyed each individual character and personally, I loved their geekiness. The technology they’ve been able to build with next to no resources is phenomenal and their determination is something else entirely. Who else would think to take on the equivalent of a superhero and win? These guys… and boy, do they do it with style!

I really enjoyed the ending of this book. I wasn’t sure how the book was going to be wrapped up, and I was pleasantly surprised by the ending. It was action-packed, very cleverly done and I don’t think I could’ve asked for any better! And the best bit is, it’s not even over yet! With additional books in the series, there is plenty of scope to take this further and I can guarantee you that I will be picking these up! Equally, I think you could read Steelheart as a standalone if you really wanted to. But why would you want to when it’s just this good?!

Have you read Steelheart, or does my review make you want to consider reading it? Let me know in the comments!

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Monthly Wrap-Up – August 2021

After just over a week’s break from blogging to spend time with family, I’m back with my monthly wrap-up for August 2021. I appreciate this might feel a little late. Normally I would have shared this last week, but as my sister and her boyfriend were over visiting I decided to take the whole week off so I could enjoy my time with them fully!

However, I am back now and raring to go! I feel really good about the progress I made last month in terms of reading. Picking up a book is becoming a habit again. This has been a benefit to me; I can’t overstate how important it is to take time out for yourself. After a record reading year, as well as moving house and studying for work, I was done. It’s very easy to overlook maintaining a healthy balance – and I’ll be the first to admit that I didn’t do this last year. I scaled back this year to avoid burnout. The fact that I’m coming back and reading more regularly is a good sign that this has been effective.

 

Books Read

August‘s reading has been dominated by Harry Potter. Not only did I finish the fourth instalment of the series, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, but I also made significant progress with the fifth book, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.

If you’ve picked up or read either of these books, you’ll know they’re both chunky. As of the end of the month I was around halfway through HP and the Order of the Phoenix. That in its own right can equate to one or two books! It is a long one, but picking it up hasn’t been a challenge. Not only do I find the books really easy to read, but I don’t find their size intimidating. Maybe it’s because I’ve read them before, or because big books are my bag!

So it may not look like much progress on paper. But, given my recent track record, I’m really happy with how I’m progressing. In recent months picking up a book was something I had to do consciously. That might sound daft because I always do it consciously, but I had less motivation to do so. I wouldn’t say I quite had to talk myself into it, but it wasn’t a first instinct when asked what I wanted to do. Not only is that back, but I’m currently able to balance that with some other hobbies I’ve picked up along the way.

If you know me personally or follow me on Instagram, you may have seen the odd post here in there about knitting. In the absence of reading I’ve taken up this hobby. As you will see, I’ve come along way in a short space of time. For a time I think knitting became my substitute for reading. I needed something new and I do like a challenge! Now my interests are shifting to allow for both hobbies to coincide with each other… and that’s the kind of balance I like to see and I hope will continue! Here is my latest post on my Instagram feed me to give you an idea of the sort of things I’m doing right now: 

Blog Posts

In my monthly wrap-up posts I also like to share the blog posts that I have written and published during them up. That way, if you have missed any of my content and see something you like the look of, you will find a handy link here!

In addition to reading this month, I’ve also shared the following: – 

That’s all for me in today’s monthly wrap-up post for August.

Are there any good books you have picked up, or is there even something you’re currently reading that you would recommend? Have you picked up any new hobbies recently? Let me know in the comments!

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Book Review: The Thief Taker – C. S. Quinn

In today’s book review post I’m sharing my thoughts on a book that I read around the time I moved house last year. That seems crazy to me because that was well over a year ago! It just goes to show how far behind I am on some of my reviews. Needless to say that after today’s post I can take one more off my list and I hope you enjoy hearing my thoughts on this book.

The Thief Taker appealed to me for its setting. It seemed apt given that we were in the height of our first wave of the pandemic locally at the time I read the book. Maybe that isn’t the best choice for anyone who is superstitious; I am not however and I went on to enjoy this book!

 

The Thief Taker – C. S. Quinn

Goodreads – The Thief Taker

The year is 1665. Black Death ravages London. A killer stalks the streets in a plague doctor’s hood and mask…

When a girl is gruesomely murdered, thief taker Charlie Tuesday reluctantly agrees to take on the case. But the horrific remains tell him this is no isolated death. The killer’s mad appetites are part of a master plan that could destroy London – and reveal the dark secrets of Charlie’s own past.

Now the thief taker must find this murderous mastermind before the plague obliterates the evidence street by street. This terrifying pursuit will take Charlie deep into the black underbelly of old London, where alchemy, witchcraft and blood-spells collide.

In a city drowned in darkness, death could be the most powerful magic of all.

 

My Thoughts…

As I said in my introduction, the main reason I wanted to read this book was to indulge in the setting. British history ironically wasn’t touched on all that much as part of my education. It was there a bit, but I spent most of my time studying the world wars, the Cold War and the economic Boom and Bust in the 1920’s and 30’s. With that in mind, I wanted to try something new. This particular book appealed because in addition it also had an element of mystery – a murder to be solved. It’s a genre that I read from time to time and more often than not enjoy, so I felt it was a safe bet to try something new but equally with a touch of familiarity.

I really enjoyed the mystery element. Can I say that I expected the book and the plot would turn out the way you did? Absolutely not! The story had a far wider scope and I imagined but honestly, I really enjoyed that.

The book is brilliant in its description of London at its worst. If you don’t have a strong stomach then maybe take this with a pinch of salt. The narrative encourages the imagination to run wild with vivid descriptions of just how atrocious conditions were at the time. Imagine bodies rotting in the streets. People hiding themselves away and turning on anyone they think to be sick. The city turns into a cesspit; it’s one thing to have a vague understanding of how things happened in reality, reading a book such as this brings it into perspective.

With society in a state of breakdown and sickness everywhere, the book is full of tension. Where is safe? Who is lurking behind close doors or in the next alleyway – a criminal… or something worse? Our main character finds himself looking over his shoulder constantly and with London being incredibly unsafe, the narrative is full of action to keep us as readers interested.

There is definitely far more that can be added to the series. The plot has been left pretty wide open after this book so it will be interesting to see where the next instalment takes us. For historical fiction, I enjoyed the change of setting and pace and for anyone looking to delve into British history, or at least a very dark side of history, this may just be for you!

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Shelf Control #34 – 20/08/2021

Happy Friday everyone and welcome to today’s Shelf Control post! Shelf Control is a regular feature here on Reviewsfeed and is a meme run by Lisa at Bookshelf Fantasies. It’s a weekly celebration of the unread books on our shelves. Pick a book you own but haven’t read, write a post about it (suggestions: include what it’s about, why you want to read it, and when you got it), and link up!

For more info on what Shelf Control is all about, check out Lisa’s introductory post.

I try to share these Shelf Control posts regularly. By doing so I can continually review the books on my TBR to decide if I still want to read them, or whether my reading case has changed and it’s no longer for me. I have taken a few books off this list by doing these posts. It’s a productive exercise and gives me some bookish content to share with you. And who knows, by featuring those books I still want to read, maybe I can introduce you to something that will take your fancy as well!

This week’s featured book is: – 

 

Children of the Revolution – Peter Robinson

Children of the Revolution

Goodreads – Children of the Revolution

A disgraced college lecturer is found murdered with £5,000 in his pocket on a disused railway line near his home. Since being dismissed from his job for sexual misconduct four years previously, he has been living a poverty-stricken and hermit-like existence in this isolated spot.

The suspects range from several individuals at the college where he used to teach to a woman who knew the victim back in the early ’70s at Essex University, then a hotbed of political activism. When Banks receives a warning to step away from the case, he realises there is much more to the mystery than meets the eye – for there are plenty more skeletons to come out of the closet . . .

 

My Thoughts…

I’m one of those people who has a bit of a hangup about reading a book from the middle of a series. I just don’t like the idea for the most part. However, Children of the Revolution is the 21st book in this particular series and I’m determined to read it because I love the synopsis. I’m hoping it’s the kind of book where having read around it is beneficial… but not essential. I don’t fancy reading 20 books to even get to this one! I think it will be fine – I will make it fine with me!

As I said, I like the sound of the synopsis of this book. I really enjoy mystery and my attention was caught by the predicament our victim is in from the synopsis. It’s an unusual scenario and it already has me thinking about possible motives and what bearing his history and circumstances have on the event. It’s also set in Yorkshire which has a bit of a personal connection as I have distant family that live there. The few times I’ve been I have enjoyed it and I imagine it will make an interesting setting with colourful characters.

I haven’t read any books by Peter Robinson, however, I’m always willing to try something new and experience a narrative from a new author. Everyone has their unique style and if I go onto enjoy this book, I may just go back and read the previous 20! Who knows – I’ll see how this one goes!

Do you like the sound of this book? Have you read it before, or any other books by Peter Robinson? Let me know in the comments!

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Shelf Control #33 – 06/08/2021

Happy Friday and welcome to today’s Shelf Control post! Shelf Control is a regular feature here on Reviewsfeed and is a meme run by Lisa at Bookshelf Fantasies. It’s a weekly celebration of the unread books on our shelves. Pick a book you own but haven’t read, write a post about it (suggestions: include what it’s about, why you want to read it, and when you got it), and link up!

For more info on what Shelf Control is all about, check out Lisa’s introductory post.

I like to share these posts on a regular basis as it gives me the opportunity to continually review the books on my TBR. I can also decide if I still want to read them, or whether perhaps my reading taste has changed and it’s no longer for me. A lot of the early books on my list were added several years ago now; that’s quite a lot of time for my opinion to change. What I have found, since doing the series, is that I have taken a few books off this list. It’s a productive activity, and it gives me some bookish content that I can share with you. And who knows, by featuring those books I still want to read, maybe I can introduce you to something that will take your fancy as well!

This week’s featured book is a non-fiction novel. In the grand scheme I’d say these are in the minority on my list, however there are certain subjects that I will go back to again and again. Psychology is one of them. I studied psychology at school and having really loved the subject, I’ve always kept in touch with a little. It’s not an exact science and I love all the history of the ‘science’ of dealing with mind. That is particularly important for today’s featured book, as it looks at how psychology and mental illness was treated in the 19th century.

 

Lunatics, Imbeciles and Idiots: A History of Insanity in Nineteenth-Century Britain and Ireland – Kathryn Burtinshaw & John Burt

Lunatics, Imbeciles and Idiots

Goodreads – Lunatics, iImbeciles and Idiots

In the first half of the nineteenth-century treatment of the mentally ill in Britain and Ireland underwent radical change. No longer manacled, chained and treated like wild animals, patient care was defined in law and medical understanding, and treatment of insanity developed.

Focussing on selected cases, this new study enables the reader to understand how progressively advancing attitudes and expectations affected decisions, leading to better legislation and medical practice throughout the century. Specific mental health conditions are discussed in detail and the treatments patients received are analysed in an expert way. A clear view of why institutional asylums were established, their ethos for the treatment of patients, and how they were run as palaces rather than prisons giving moral therapy to those affected becomes apparent. The changing ways in which patients were treated, and altered societal views to the incarceration of the mentally ill, are explored. The book is thoroughly illustrated and contains images of patients and asylum staff never previously published, as well as first-hand accounts of life in a nineteenth-century asylum from a patients perspective.

Written for genealogists as well as historians, this book contains clear information concerning access to asylum records and other relevant primary sources and how to interpret their contents in a meaningful way.

 

My Thoughts….

To an extent I touched on some of the topics I expect to be in this book as part of my course. With that in mind, I would say it’s probably not for those of the faint-hearted. Early psychological treatment was barbaric. I’m sure it seemed innovative at the time, but back in the day there was very little understanding of how the mind actually worked and how it could be treated (other than by brute force). I leave it at that, in case any of you are on the squeamish side I don’t want the details!

To think how far along treatment has come in just a comparatively short time, there is a lot that can be covered in this book. It will build upon the topics that I enjoyed at school and I’m also interested to see how changes in the law impacted the subject.

It’s a slightly unusual one, but I’m really interested to see what this book has to offer and I’m looking forward to learning something new!

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Monthly Wrap-Up – July 2021

Hello everyone! I’m back with another monthly wrap-up post. Honestly, where is this year going? I’m not kidding you when I say that as part of the social committee at work I’m starting to make preparations for the big party event at the end of the year (you know the one) and it doesn’t feel like it should be coming round this quickly. But, it is, whether I think it should be or not!

This is my seventh monthly wrap-up, having started taking this approach at the beginning of the year as opposed to sharing a TBR at the beginning of the month. I’ve enjoyed the change of pace and having the flexibility to pick up what I want and when I want. Not only has this suited me was taking a step back, but it also proved not to be a hindrance getting back into it. And it’s fair to say compare to recent months, I’m back in the game. I’m really pleased with the amount of reading I’ve done over the last month, which you can find out below.

 

Books Read

The beginning of this month started with a number of short stories. I was taking part in blog tours for both Clarissa and Ruabon by Karl Drinkwater. In part, I think having the deadlines for each of these helped encourage me to pick up the books quickly, but also being quite short these were very easy to read a as well. I read and loved previous books of the series before, so I was confident these are a safe bet when I signed up for them.

Starting with these two definitely helped motivate me, because I then picked up a short story that I was loaned by our CEO. He is also an avid reader and he wanted my thoughts on the particular book he recommended (and loaned) to me. I’d had it for a little while but as I hadn’t set aside time deliberately to read it, I found I would start it, put it down, not pick it up again for a bit and then consequently end up starting again. After reading two short stories already, I felt I was in the mood and that it was time to set aside time specifically for this book. Not that it took long. I read this within a couple of days too – my reading streak was definitely a record for this year at that point already.

After reading these three short stories, and generally feeling good about my progress, I decided to pick up something a little longer. Having looked at my bookshelves for a bit, and even trying a couple of chapters on a kindle book that I’ve DNF’d before (but then decided against for the sake of preserving my newfound motivation), I decided to pick up The Taking of Annie Thorne by C. J Tudor. I had read and loved a previous book of hers, The Chalk Man, and so I felt it was a reasonably safe bet. This decision paid off as well because I loved this book! It was everything I expected and utterly enthralling. I don’t think I could have chosen better.

And still, after all these books, I’m not quite done. My next read was Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J. K. Rowling. I didn’t quite finish this before month-end, however, I was well over halfway. Given that this portion of the read was about as long as The Taking of Annie Thorne, I’m pleased with this progress! Another book I started and was (and still am) making progress on was Stock Investing for Dummies by Paul Mladjenovic. It’s not the sort of thing that I imagine is everyone’s cup of tea, but given that it loosely relates to my job role and I enjoy reading around the subject, I thought this would be a good place to start. Only got to around 20 odd percent of this one before month-end.

So, as you can see, I’ve definitely read a lot more than in previous months this year. At the end of last month, I set myself a goal to try and pick up reading more regularly again. I used to read nearly every night, but in taking a bit of a break this year, this scaled back quite a lot – maybe to once or twice a week at an absolute push! I’m still not reading every night now, but picking up a book is a more frequent occurrence, and long may that habit continue.

And after all that reading, I can’t forget the audiobook progress I’ve made this month as well! After several months, I finally finished listening to A Clash of Kings by George R. R. Martin. I really enjoyed listening to this as I love the series. I did, however, decide after finishing that audiobook that I needed a break from the series. So, I decided to listen to something completely new – A Suitable Lie by Michael J. Malone. As of the end of July, I was around a third of the way through this audiobook. It’s nowhere near as long as A Clash of Kings, and so progress should be a lot quicker.

 

Blog Posts

As always, I like to recap the posts I have shared over the last month so then if you happen to have missed any, you can check them out with a handy link from here! In addition to all this reading this month, I’ve also shared the following:

 

I hope you enjoyed today’s wrap-up post for July. I feel really good about the progress I’ve made over the last month and how I’m getting back into reading more often. Being able to give myself the freedom to pick up what I want and what I want is really suiting me – and encouraging me to get back into it more. I hope this bit of news excites you, as that means I’m going to have more bookish content to share with you in the long run.

Are there any good books you have picked up in the last month, or is there even something you’re currently reading that you would recommend? Let me know in the comments!

 

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