April Reading Wrap Up

Sunday, 29 April 2018
In April I tend to swap reading books for hitting the books in preparation for exams but this year I don't have any so I've been reading to my little heart's content. I'm actually really sad that I only have 6 weeks left with my local library as it's such a good one. I'm on a mission to read as many good books between now and my return to Edinburgh. I read some really interesting books this month and most of them I'd really recommend.

Ghost World by Daniel Clowes
This is the famous graphic novel that the hit movie is based on. I loved the movie so was excited about reading it. The story follows two obnoxiously 'individual' teenage girls as they negotiate boys/men in the summer between high school and college. It was ok. The plot was different to the movie and I think I actually prefer the movie plot. I found them a little irritating at the time but it was a nice easy read. I gave it 3/5 stars. 

Coffin Road by Peter May
Peter May is one of my favourite Scottish writers and he writes really great murder mysteries set in the Western Isles of Scotland. In Coffin Road, we follow a character as he awakes having washed up on a beach with no memory of who he is, investigate a murder on an uninhabited island and follow a young girl dealing with the mystery of her father's suicide. I liked this book but I didn't find myself as hooked as the rest of his novels. Although that being said, I didn't guess any of the twists. I enjoyed it but it wasn't his best work so I gave it 3/5 stars. 

You Must Be Very Intelligent: The PhD Delusion by Karin Bodewits
I've written a full review of this book which you can read here. This book is a semi-autobiographical account of the author's experience in doing a chemistry PhD at the University of Edinburgh. She makes some really important points but is very bitchy about people which turns it into a very difficult to read book. She comes across as very bitter and petty and it just left a sour taste in my mouth. I gave it 2/5 stars. 

Eat Up: Food, Appetite and Eating What You Want by Ruby Tandoh
Now, this a book that I can totally rave about. Ruby Tandoh has written this in-depth discussion about food, the attitude we have to it and why we shouldn't feel guilty about eating. It's rich, descriptive and downright beautiful. In a world of alkaline diets and low carb low fun eating this book is a breath of fresh air. I gave it 5/5 stars and would recommend this to absolutely everyone.

Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson
This is a YA novel that follows a young black girl who is sold alongside her sister right before the American revolution. Her new 'owners' are British sympathisers and it's about her struggle with what side to be on. The American side offers her and her sister passage out of the city if she spies on the family but the British have abolished slavery. This book was good but it wasn't as gripping as a lot of her other works so I gave it 3/5 stars. I enjoyed the book but not enough to be super enthusiastic about reading the next one in the series.

Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay
This selection of short essays is super famous so I'm really surprised that I've only just gotten around to. The essays feature topics about what it's like to me a woman and also how race comes into play too. A lot of the essays I really enjoyed, some not so much but I didn't force myself to finish the ones I wasn't really enjoying. One of the big problems for me in this book is that she often refers to popular books/movies/shows. And because I hadn't watched or read a lot of them, I felt a bit disconnected from it and found it hard to really understand the points she was making. Because of this, I gave the book 3/5 stars.

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
This book has been super popular and I can understand why. The book begins with a house burning down. Then we go back in time and follow two families in the events leading up to the fire. It was gripping and interesting and was unlike anything I've read before. I really, really enjoyed this book. I gave it 5/5 stars.

Surprise Me by Sophie Kinsella
I read this book at part of the Slow Sunday Club's monthly book club. It's narrated by a woman who is feeling a bit stagnant in her marriage so she and her husband agree to proactively try to surprise each other often. I didn't think it was great, to be honest. I found the narrator to be very annoying and unrelatable. But this isn't the sort of book I would really pick for myself so I'm not too surprised. 2/5 stars.

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