Tag: J K Rowling

Sunday Summary – 21st February 2021

Hi guys and welcome to today’s Sunday Summary post. Have you had a good week? Mine has been – I’ve enjoyed some great books, TV and even a film this week. For many years I haven’t really watched much in the way of TV, but with less pressure put upon myself to read all the time, I’m finding it on more often. It’s a funny coincidence that the film I ended up watching most of was the film edition of my current read! What a coincidence, eh?

In terms of blogging, I shared one other blog post this week. I finally put together my review of Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor; I hope it does the book/series justice. It’s one of my favourites and I hope that comes across. If you haven’t checked out that post yet, please do!

I also drafted 90% of my Harry Potter tag post, but unfortunately, I ran out of time to finish it and publish it yesterday. My laptop decided to inconveniently download and install some updates late yesterday evening. Let’s just say that it’s gotten to a certain age where downloading updates renders it practically useless in terms of doing anything else! Want to flick from a word document to a web page? Sure, but you’ll have to wait five minutes, the programs will ‘not respond’ at least twice and after all that, don’t dare to scroll the web page unless you want to repeat the whole process. So, come 10:30 pm last night I’d had enough and gave up.

 

Books Read

I’ve made progress on a number of books this week. As of last week’s Sunday Summary post I was currently reading Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J. K. Rowling. I went on to finish this book this week and it was honestly as good as I remember it! I really enjoyed this second book of the re-read of the series. Thankfully the early books aren’t too long, so it didn’t take long to read at all. Once I’ve read the third one they get a bit chunkier though!

Next, I picked up my current read, The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. I bought this on Kindle a few years ago and I decided that it was the book I wanted to pick up next. Over the course of the week, I’ve read a quarter of the book so far. Ironically, I’m about at the point in the book where I picked up on the film on Friday night, so I know what happens. I’m still looking forward to reading it though –it hasn’t spoiled it for me at all!

Lastly, I listened to some more A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin this week. I have started listening to it when commuting as I said I was going to. I still listened to the radio a couple of times, but I think getting back into the habit of listening to audiobooks on a regular basis will help me get through more of them than I am currently.

 

Books Discovered

This week’s discovered section is going to be comparatively boring to last week’s update. There’s nothing to add here and that’s probably for the best!

 

Coming Up…

Since I’ve already written 90% of the post, it makes sense to share my Harry Potter Book tag early next week. I’ve enjoyed writing it and I hope it makes for fun reading for you!

I’ll be sharing another review with you later in the week. I have a number of reviews to catch up on, and this week’s review is for a book I read late last year that I had been asked to read in exchange for an honest review. London: Auxiliary 2039 is a cyberpunk thriller novel that I loved. The plot was interesting and I enjoyed the mystery behind the narrative. I hope you can check out my full review next week!

 

Until then, that’s all from me in today’s Sunday Summary post! Have a good week, happy reading and I’ll see you around!

 

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Sunday Summary – 14th February 2021

Hi guys – Happy Valentine’s Day and welcome to today’s weekly Sunday Summary update. I hope you’ve had a great week wherever you are? Mine has been pretty good. I’ve been kept busy at work and I’ve been spending my evening binge-watching TV (quite unusual for me, but I’ve enjoyed it!).

Aside from that, I shared an audiobook review for Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo on Tuesday. It was the review I was supposed to share last week but just needed a bit more work before I was ready to publish it. I have to confess that this was my only post this week, despite my plans to share a second review later this week. I’ll be honest with you… I just didn’t get around to it. I love Dreams of Gods and Monsters and I need to get the review right to do it justice.

 

Books Read

I’ve made some more progress with Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets this week. AS of last week’s Sunday Summary update, I was a third of the way through the book. I’m now nearer two thirds through and I’m looking forward to finishing the re-read of this book.

I’ve also listened to a little more of A Game of Thrones since my last update. Not much, but a couple of chapters here and there makes a difference. I still have a good few hours to listen to but I’m going to start listening to my audiobooks on my commutes again. It works out at an hour a day roughly, so it all helps.

 

Books Discovered

 

I haven’t made the most progress on reading or blogging this week, but I have made up for it in other ways. This week I celebrated my birthday and I was very lucky to get a number of books gifted to me! I received the Nevernight trilogy by Jay Kristoff in paperback and also two clothbound classics – Frankenstein and Animal Farm.  I love each and every one and I can’t wait to re-read them all!

 

Coming Up…

I’m going to share the review I didn’t get around to for Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor. To make sure I get the chance to do it, it’s the only review I’m planning on sharing this week.

I’ve been inspired by my current read to take part in a Harry Potter-themed book tag. I enjoyed reading the Harry Potter tag shared over on the blog All You READ Is Love and so I want to share my own answers to this! It’ll be a nice light read for you guys and fun for me to draft. I hope you enjoy it as much as I will.

 

Until next time, have a great week and I’ll see you in my next post!

 

 

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Sunday Summary – 7th February 2021

I’m back with another weekly update in today’s Sunday Summary post! Have you had a good week? I certainly have! It’s been a long one, but worth all the effort. You may recall that I have mentioned that I have been sitting exams for work over the last year or so. Well, I sat my last exam on Wednesday and the good news is, I passed! My grade technically remains provisional until mid next week, but after that, it will be official and I will have my qualification at last! I actually sat my last exam remotely at home, which was a very strange experience… but good that it meant I knew I could sit the exam regardless of the Covid situation.

I only shared one out of my two planned blog posts this week. My January wrap-up post went live on Wednesday; naturally in the lead up to the exam my priority was revision, so this was posted afterwards. As shared in last week’s Sunday Summary update, I was supposed to share an audiobook review later this week. However, I didn’t quite finish it in time. It has been nearly a year since I finished listening to it and so it took some time to cast my mind back to the events of the book and my thoughts on it. I’m pleased to say it’s nearly ready to be published, so you can expect it soon.

 

Books Read

My main reading priority this week (aside from last-minute studying) has been Fire and Blood by George R. R. Martin. It has been on my bedside for most of the week and I’ve been going up to bed with a cup of tea to read. I’ve enjoyed this over the last few nights, and I am now over a couple of hundred of pages in. Most would probably baulk at the idea of this being light, bedtime reading… but I’m enjoying it and that’s what counts!

I decided to take a different read up to bed last night for a change of pace. I’m loving reading Fire and Blood, but at over 700 pages it is an epic that will take me a bit longer to read. I also highly doubt I’ll be popping it in my backpack to take to work for lunchtime reading either, so I wanted something else for this. Instead, I chose to pick up the second book in the Harry Potter series and continue my re-read. I don’t want to stretch out the time between reading them too long either. Since about this time last night, I have read 80 pages, which is a third of the book already!

 

Books Discovered

Once again, nothing to see here, which is a miracle! I’ve been avoiding the bookshop and its temptations deliberately…

 

Coming Up…

My first plan for the week is to get my audiobook review for Crooked Kingdom (the one I was supposed to publish this week) completed and published. There isn’t too much to do so I’m looking to share that post by Tuesday at the absolute latest!

Later in the week, I’m going to share yet another review. I have a good deal to write and given that I’m still reviewing non-blog tour books that are nearly a year old so to speak, I need to get on it. With that in mind, I’m going to review Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor. It’s the last book in a trilogy I absolutely adore and I can’t wait to share this one with you!

 

I hope you have enjoyed today’s Sunday Summary post and I wish you all a fantastic week to come. What are you reading?

 

 

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Sunday Summary – 10th January 2021

Hi everyone and welcome to today’s Sunday Summary weekly update post! I hope you are all keeping well?

This week has been… unusual, to say the least. In fact, no, that’s an understatement. This time last week everything was normal here on the Island. This weekend, we’re back in full lockdown. It’s crazy how quickly it’s happened, but fingers crossed the decisiveness of the Government is the right decision to eradicating it again. So, aside from a food shop, I’ve been home since Wednesday.

On a more positive note, I have been able to put my time to good use both here and in terms of reading. On Thursday I shared my 2020 Wrap Up post, in which I looked back at my reading goals for last year and how I did with them. I’ll give you a spoiler – I didn’t do great… but for good reasons. Hop on over and check that post out if you haven’t already!

Yesterday I took part in a blog tour and provided a promo spotlight post for When the Children Come by Barry Kirwan. It’s a sci-fi novel suitable for young adult and adult readers. I read a thriller by the same author last year (under the pen name J. F. Kirwan) and honestly, it’s up there as one of my top reads of the year! I have no doubt When the Children Come is just as good, so it was a pleasure to be able to take part in the tour.

 

Books Read

As of last week, my current read was Midnight in Chernobyl by Adam Higginbotham. It’s still a current read, but I must confess I have shelved it for a few days having only read 12-13 pages or so since last week’s update.

When the news hit on Tuesday evening that we would be going into lockdown, I didn’t know what to do with myself. I tried to pick up Midnight in Chernobyl as a distraction but didn’t get very far at all. Then, I tried knitting, but my heart wasn’t in that either. I put on an episode of A Game of Thrones (I’m re-watching the last season, slowly) but after 20 minutes I gave up on that too.

In the end, I went up to bed quite early for me and started to read Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J. K. Rowling. Re-reading these books is one of my goals for this year, and I needed something light-hearted. It worked, and I managed to read about 50 pages or so that night before going to bed. I’ve carried on reading it over the course of the week, and I actually finished the book yesterday evening.

I still wasn’t quite in the mood to return to Midnight in Chernobyl yesterday, although I think I’ll be able to pick this up again now. So, after much debate and telling myself that no, I couldn’t do another re-read of A Game of Thrones  1) again and 2) as well as Harry Potter, I picked up Fire & Blood by George R. R. Martin instead. Fire & Blood is a book about the history of the universe A Game of Thrones is set in, covering the 300 years before events of the main series. I felt it was a good compromise and I’ve really enjoyed what I have read so far. I’m 61 pages into this 700-page behemoth, but I love it!

 

Books Discovered

There aren’t any new books on the TBR this week, I’m pleased to say. I have been reading more blog posts by other bloggers again (a habit I got out of), so this might change in the weeks to come. But for now, no news is good news!

 

Coming Up…

In an effort to get through some of the backlog of reviews I have, I am going to be sharing another book review with you next week. This particular book is a copy I received in exchange for a review. It’s very reminiscent of Harry Potter. My reading of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone this week has reminded me that I still haven’t reviewed Chimeborn, written by Daniel Curry. So, I think it’s time I share my review with you all!

As it’s the beginning of the year and we are still thinking about the progress and such I made last year, I also want to share a post about my favourite reads of the year. I hope you can tune in for that one too!

As always, I’ll conclude the week with another Sunday Summary post.

 

That’s all from me for now though! Have a good week, stay safe and I’ll hopefully see you around!

 

 

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Throwback Thursday Mini Review: Harry Potter series – J K Rowling

I for one feel privileged to have grown up reading the Harry Potter books. I read these in my teenage years; so I grew up with Harry, Ron, Hermione, and friends as they venture through a vast world of magic.

I never got my Hogwarts letter, and I am TOTALLY bitter about it.

 

Harry Potter’s life is miserable. His parents are dead and he’s stuck with his heartless relatives, who force him to live in a tiny closet under the stairs. But his fortune changes when he receives a letter that tells him the truth about himself: he’s a wizard. A mysterious visitor rescues him from his relatives and takes him to his new home, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

After a lifetime of bottling up his magical powers, Harry finally feels like a normal kid. But even within the Wizarding community, he is special. He is the boy who lived: the only person to have ever survived a killing curse inflicted by the evil Lord Voldemort, who launched a brutal takeover of the Wizarding world, only to vanish after failing to kill Harry.

Though Harry’s first year at Hogwarts is the best of his life, not everything is perfect. There is a dangerous secret object hidden within the castle walls, and Harry believes it’s his responsibility to prevent it from falling into evil hands. But doing so will bring him into contact with forces more terrifying than he ever could have imagined.

Full of sympathetic characters, wildly imaginative situations, and countless exciting details, the first installment in the series assembles an unforgettable magical world and sets the stage for many high-stakes adventures to come.

My Thoughts…

The series paints a wonderful, exhilarating and magical world. It is written incredibly well, so magic could live in our world without us “muggles” knowing about it! Though not without its downside, the world beyond Platform 9 ¾ is fraught with danger. He Who Must Not Be Named makes a formidable wizard and undying foe. The series is so well known, I don’t feel I even have to say that much about it. If you don’t know it, you either don’t care or live under a rock.

Whilst there are discrepancies over exact numbers, I cannot believe J. K. Rowling had so many rejections by multiple publishers. To think how prominent and successful the series is now, it is hard to fathom why they didn’t snatch the opportunity with both hands. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, I guess.

Naturally, I am going to show a preference for the books, but the films are great too. They are totally enjoyable to watch and pretty true to the books, so that’s a big thumbs up from me!

Whilst advantageous that I was of a similar age to the characters when I read the books, I know they are loved by many – of all ages and walks of life. My gramps read/listened to the books and still enjoyed them at 70! I think this series will stand the test of time. I only hope my grandchildren will still be talking about them. That is many MANY moons off yet… I hope.

 

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Top Ten Tuesday – Books to Re-Read

We all have a beloved favourite… or multiple books we yearn to re-read every once in a while! They may look tattered, dog-eared or rough… maybe even like they’ve gone through the mill a few times. In a way, that’s a sign of a really good book! Equally, some people worship their books like Gods. I have a pet hate of spine cracking and avoid it where I can. However well you look after your books, they truly are a gift that keeps on giving.

Today, I wanted to share with you the Top Ten Books (series where applicable) I would die to read again: –

 

The Mistborn Trilogy – Brandon Sanderson

I love the magical realism in these books and how well each of the characters is developed. I am yet to read the next trilogy taking place after the original series, but I would certainly read these again! And again…

 

Gentlemen Bastards – Scott Lynch

I am definitely going to have to re-read these books once The Thorn of Emberlain is released. I read The Republic of Thieves back in February 2015, so it’s been over three years since I’ve touched any of the books. I’ll admit I had even forgotten we were awaiting the next installment – good of me to remind myself (and you!) I’m not a fan of all the negative messages from other fans about it not being published yet. Books take as long as necessary to write and polish. Be patient.

 

The Kingkiller Chronicle – Patrick Rothfuss

This is a series I read some time ago as well.

Usually, when I fall in love with a book, it is either for the plot or the writing style… rarely both. This series is the absolute exception to the rule! I could read these on repeat and not mind one bit. Once it is finished, I expect this series is going to end up on my all-time faves list.

 

The Broken Empire series  – Mark Lawrence

The thing I distinctly remember loving about this series is how unlovable and flawed the MC is. He is no hero. He’s selfish, spiteful and egotistic, to mention but a few things. You come to understand why though, and that kind of makes him lovable in the end.

 

The Green Mile – Stephen King

This is an absolute classic! If anyone either doesn’t like this book or doesn’t want to read it again, then I don’t understand you. I think this is a book that I will revisit and cry over again and again in my lifetime.

 

IT – Stephen King

I only read this book about a year ago, so I am not looking to re-read any time soon. I want to re-read it as it is such a large and detailed book and I want to see if I missed anything the first time around. Stephen King is such a fantastic writer. I don’t think re-reading any of his books would get repetitive.

 

To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee

I think there are some fairly obvious reasons as to why I would like to read this book again.

I loved the narrative, the characters and the plot itself – but what is most important is the lesson in our history. Only from our mistakes can we learn. I would hate to think of a society so openly hostile to those within it for something so superficial as skin colour. Unfortunately, prejudice and discrimination haven’t been stamped out as much as I would like; people are just less overt about it. That is all the more reason to remind ourselves once in a while about just how awful it is.

 

Strange the Dreamer – Laini Taylor

Strange the Dreamer is a very recent read. In fact, I devoured the book! Whilst I expect to love Muse of Nightmares just as much, that hasn’t come out yet. I would anticipate I’ll end up reading this duology again. The characters, the magic, and the narrative are beautiful.

I am still waiting for my Lazlo. Still. Waiting.

 

Harry Potter series – J. K. Rowling

I grew up with these books, reading them at various stages in my childhood. Arguably, these books were hugely responsible for my love of reading. Now, I would like to read them again as an adult as I think I will appreciate them an awful lot more as more.

 

A Song of Ice & Fire (aka A Game of Thrones) – George R. R. Martin

I have in fact already re-read the series (so far) once and am pining to do so again. I am half considering re-reading one book of the series a month for the rest of the year. I’m not 100% decided though. They are large books and it would take a fair chunk of my reading time out for new books.

Fuck it. I’ve re-downloaded them onto my kindle. What’s done is done.

 

Have you read any of the books above? Would you want to re-read them again? Let me know in the comments!