13-18/50 Books of 2019 Reading Challenge.

26 May 2019

Well the past two months have been excellent in terms of getting stuck in a book and I'm nearly at the halfway point as I currently read my 21st book. Thanks to the school Easter Holiday I managed to read 6 books in that 2 weeks alone and enjoyed reading whilst in the comfort of our Cotswolds Air BnB too. I took a trip to my local library for some reads in the last couple of months too and gravitated towards new genres as well as reading some of the books kindly gifted through NetGallery that I've had waiting to be read from my Kindle. 

Did you read my previous book roundup post? 7-12/50 Books of 2019 Reading Challenge. 



Skellig by David Almond | ☆☆☆
I picked up this book from our local library after hearing of a stage play of the book was in Nottingham earlier this year. The idea of the story and characters fascinated me so I wanted to read it for myself. The take on angel-like creatures without being too airy fairy was spot on and Skellig was an interesting character to read about.

The take on a friendship between Michael and Mina whilst also an underlying plot about Michael's baby sister was greatly written. Skelling is a fantastic example of a YA Fiction book! I read it very quickly and wasn't disappointed!



The Furthest Station by Ben Aaronovitch | ☆☆☆ 1/2

I grabbed this book from the library on the amount of recommendations to read Aaronovitch's books. I have the Rivers of London book on my shelf I need to read and I thought this shorter book would give me an insight to the style and topic of the writing.

"There's something going bump on the Metropolitan line and Sergeant Jaget Kumar knows exactly who to call".. I mean the last 4 words make me want to sing the Ghostbusters theme. There's a crime, ghostly vibe to this book that makes it very different to the books I've read before. I liked the style of writing although at times I had to reread sentences to remind myself of where I was in the plot. There's some fantastic humour embedded in the book and this is what everyone told me I would like about this series!

I will definitely be reading Rivers of London after reading this book. It was a fantastic introduction for me and I was pleasantly surprised by what I read!

Shtum: A Novel by Jem Lester | 
☆☆
☆☆
Jem Lester draws on his own experience of raising an autistic child in Shtum and produces a profound novel that I couldn't put down. It draws on a lot of emotion and dark humour to portray the character Ben Jewell's story. His autistic ten year old son Jonah has never spoken and both him and his wife Emma aren't coping. The story centres around an upcoming tribunal for Jonah's upcoming move to secondary education and Ben and Emma have decided to fake a separation to help their cause too. However it's quickly figured out that this fake separation is a permanent fixture.. 




Ben is left to confront single fatherhood, a string of well-meaning social workers and his own demons to advocate for his son, learning some harsh lessons about accountability from his own father along the way. As the tribunal draws near, Jonah, blissful in his innocence, becomes the prism through which all the complicated strands of personal identity, family history, and misunderstanding are finally untangled. It's a really wonderful book that I could really dig into! It was a great choice from the library! 

The Drowned Boy by Konrad Sejer | ☆☆
First of all I didn't know this was part of a crime series and I had never heard of the author before either, after reading The Drowned Boy I would be more inclined to read one by him definitely!

This story follows the death of Tommy, a healthy toddler who is found floating in the pond at the end of his backyard. Carmen and Nicolai his parents fail to resuscitate their son, but there's more to this story than a terrible accident and it's up to Inspector Skarre to investigate.

Skarre senses something is off with Carmen’s story and consults his trusted colleague, the famed Inspector Sejer. An autopsy reveals Tommy’s lungs to be full of soap. When Sejer and Skarre revisit the couple, Carmen, an epileptic, quickly changes her story, confessing that she’d been knocked unconscious by a seizure while bathing Tommy. When she came to, she found him drowned in the tub and, horrified and frightened, threw him into the pond.

But Skarre and Sejer’s doubt is not appeased and the case is reopened.

This story has been excellently written to keep you gripped to it through each page. Carmen's character at times was quite irritating as you pleaded for her to come clean on what happened to her son on that fateful day. There's excellent twists and turns making it a fantastic crime book to dig into! I couldn't put it down from start to finish as I eagerly awaited the conclusion.. I would definitely give this book a read, even if you hadn't read a book from this series before! 

The Rumour by Lesley Kara | 
☆☆This is a book that I heard fellow bloggers rave about so I finally got my hands on it and I was not disappointed with Lesley Kara's debut novel. It's a pretty intense, well written and beautifully plotted psychological thriller affair. It was an absolute page turner and I got through it very quickly! 

The setting is a small seaside town of Flinstead. The story is set around a single mother of one, Joanna Critchley who has recently located here because of bullying at her son Alfie's bullying in London. Joanna has her mother living in the town and is settling into her new life by integrating into the community. She becomes accepted in a group, engage in gossip and tittle tattle, the life blood of small towns, irrespective of whether its true or not. She hears a rumour, a child killer with a new identity lives in town. *I won't spoil any of the rest*

The story is written in a fantastic fast paced style with short chapters and plenty of twists, red herrings and high levels of suspense and tension. I really enjoyed how this story was pieced together and was completely intrigued by what would happen in the end. 




*How To Fail by Elizabeth Day | ☆☆
Elizabeth Day is mostly known for being an acclaimed novelist and journalist who also has a popular podcast too! Before reading this book I knew very little about Elizabeth Day which meant I approached this book very open-minded to what I was about to get stuck into. How To Fail is part memoir, part manifesto and it covers every type of failure you can imagine, including How To Fail at Fitting In and How To Fail at Families. There's some really fantastic insights into Elizabeth's childhood in Northern Ireland and her life in London too.

The writing style is fantastic in this book, it has a balance of deeply moving and laugh out loud funny moments too. I really enjoyed reading the chapters and actually having parts in the book that I nodded along with. This style of book isn't self help either so it didn't feel preachy but just an enjoyable alternative to this genre that would be enjoyed by all women.

What have you been reading recently?


If you enjoyed reading this post, you may also enjoy reading 7-12/50 Books of 2019 Reading Challenge.

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Books marked with an asterisk (*) were kindly gifted by the publishers or NetGallery in return for an honest review. 



2 comments

  1. I am currently reading Wuthering Heights. I have never been a big fan of classic novels but am giving it a chance. I just finished a historical fiction novel about Margaret pole, cousin of Henry viii's mother, and one of the last members of the plantagenet family.

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  2. Thanks for sharing I've added a couple to my to read list xx
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