Can’t wait Wednesday

I’m taking part in a new (to me) book blog meme today called Can’t wait Wednesday. This is where we post about a book thats not been published yet but that we really cannot wait to be so we can jump on it and devour it in one go, or something along those lines.

Its hosted by Tressa at Wishful Endings blog. Thanks for this Tressa, i’m looking forward to taking part and reading everyones posts.

The book i’m most waiting for right now is the new John Green which is called ‘Turtles All The Way Down’ and comes out in October.  I’m so excited to read a new book by him and have actually already pre-ordered it.

Blurb
It all begins with a fugitive billionaire and the promise of a cash reward. Turtles All the Way Down is about lifelong friendship, the intimacy of an unexpected reunion, Star Wars fan fiction, and tuatara. But at its heart is Aza Holmes, a young woman navigating daily existence within the ever-tightening spiral of her own thoughts. In his long-awaited return, John Green shares Aza’s story with shattering, unflinching clarity.

I dont know if this is gonna be the final cover (hope not as its a bit plain) but still makes me want to read it right now.

anybody else excited for this book?

what’s your most anticipated read?

 

 

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Orbiting Jupiter by Gary D. Schmidt

Original

Heartbreaking

Uplifting

Beautiful

My feelings on this book are best summed up by the words above.

I dont read a lot of Middle Grade books but I find it hard to believe that the plot of this book has been done before. Fostering and very young teenage pregnancy is not something you hear much about in books at all so that made this story all the more wonderful for me.

The writing in the shape of first person narrator, Jack is just a joy to read. He carries us with him on the journey so well and considering the nature of the story, the author avoids making this a sickly sweet read, instead its a well crafted, well balanced tale which drew me in and made me fall in love with it.

I had one small little issue which i cant really talk about without being spoilery sadly but it didnt stop me giving this a clear 5 stars and wanting to give everyone i know a copy for Christmas.

This was the first of the eight books from my Zoella Book Club bundle (a post coming soon with more about this) and if they are all half as good as this one then im in for a right old treat.

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Top books read in 2017 – so far….

It being July already (how?) I thought it was time to stop and have a look back at some of the books i’ve read in 2017. It’s not been the best reading year for me if i’m honest. We’ve been really busy DIY-ing among other things but I have managed to read some cracking books, so I’ve chosen my Top 3 and here they are.

Planetfall by Emma Newman was the first book I read this year and i adored it. I set myself a challenge to read more Sci-Fi in 2017 and this was a very good place to start. Its an exciting thriller that just gets better as it goes along. The pace really picks up by the end and I defy you to put it down without feeling anxious for the characters. I loved it and would highly recommend it anyone even if you think you dont like sci-fi.
The Essex Serpent is one hell of a good novel. I came late to this as most people were raving about it in 2016 but i wanted to wait for the paperback to come out and im glad i did as i got the Waterstones special edition which was blue instead of green and had the gorgeous blue sprayed edges. This is such a special book and one i can see myself re-reading in the future, which is not something i normally do, well I mean there are just too many fab books out there to discover without reading the same one twice, right? Sarah Perry creates this wonderful world and peoples it with the most curious and fascinating motley crew of characters i’ve come across since Harry Potter. Her writing style is so exquisite with paragraphs of prose that leave you breathless. Just go buy it and see what i’m on about, its ace!
The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner is my latest read and I so enjoyed this contemporary YA story. For a debut novel it was very assured and confident in its style with 3 really interesting main characters. Nothing really out of the ordinary, plot wise but so well written that you could forgive that. It also had just the right ending which makes a huge difference.

I’m so looking forward to the 2nd half of 2017’s books but for now these are my top choices.

Have you read any of these?

What have been the stand out books for you so far this year?

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner

This is about three friends, Dill, Lydia and Travis who live in a small town in Tennessee. The book begins in their final year of school before graduation. They all have incredibly different backgrounds, stories and lives but have become close and firm friends.

Of the three characters Lydia quickly became my favourite. I loved the way she handled herself with kids at school who taunted and bullied her, she was so at ease in her own skin but as the book went on she turned into a right little madam. She talked to her father like he was her flunky, ordering him to do this and that, the annoying thing was he did it all instead of teaching her some manners.

Dill i guess is the major character and the one we all feel the most for. His star grew as the book went on and had to overcome some terrible things. Travis was great too, probably my favourite by the end. I loved hanging out with these characters and feeling part of their lives and decisions. Jeff Zentner writes wonderful dialogue and has an ear for a good conversation. Witty and insightful and full of passion.

For the most part this book is beautifully written and just doesnt feel like a debut novel. It has the assurance of an author of many years standing.  My only gripe was that the writing was sometimes too flowery, the odd storyline a bit too sugary and one part of the plot was just way too unbelievable and ‘too good to be true’ for words but overall it kept me page turning and i really enjoyed reading it.  I gave it 4 stars and would highly recommend it.

 

 

5 books i’m uber excited for

So half of 2017 has virtually gone already!

How?

Where?

What have i done with my life? (apart from bought books of course)

*Cries all the tears and designs a time machine to go back*

But on a positive note here are the Top 5 books I am hugely anticipating for the second half of the year, 3 of them are already published in hardback but I prefer to wait for the paperback if possible so, bearing that in mind, bring it on!

Turtles all the way down by John Green – Yes, a new John Green novel, I am beside myself with excitement for this one (lets hope the finished cover will be more thrilling than this one however). The fault in our stars was such a massive hit he is gonna have to go it some to compete with himself but I have a feeling this will be ace.  I have already Pre-ordered it.

 

 

 

 

The Book of Dust – La Belle Sauvage by Philip Pullman – Whilst I still have not read all the His Dark Materials books I did read a sneaky first chapter of this online and it had me hooked so i cant wait. This i have also Pre-ordered and strangely they both come out on 10th October!

 

 

 

 

 

The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead – This actually comes out in paperback in just two days time (29th June) so not too long to wait then.  Every review of this has been nothing but brilliant so im looking forward to seeing what all the fuss is about. Its a challenge to myself as its way out of my reading ‘comfort zone’ but fascinating nevertheless.

 

 

 

 

First Love by Gwendoline Riley – One of the Baileys Prize for Women’s fiction shortlisted books and the only one I really like the sound of. Its a shortish book but so many Booktubers have raved about it. Its published in paperback on 7th September.

 

 

 

 

 

The Diabolic by S.J. Kincaid – This book has one of the most stunning covers i’ve ever seen in hardback so here’s hoping the paperback cover won’t disappoint. (Are you listening Simon & Schuster?) Again its another genre not normally enjoyed but for some reason I just cant wait to read this. It comes out on 13th July so just over 2 weeks to go, YAY!

 

 

 

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June book haul

Yes, its happened again! I appear to have accumulated a few more books

*sighs loudly with head in hands*

But hey, its cool and I am NOT sorry and this is why!

Now you cant tell me thats doesnt get your blood pumping with excitement, can you?

anyway lets just do this thing shall we?

Here are the books I was kindly sent by publishers

Stevie over at Gollancz kindly contacted me to see if I wanted a copy of Sarah Pinboroughs The Death House and of course I said YES!

Toby is a boy who has forgotten how to live. Clara is a girl who was born to die. Toby’s life was perfectly normal . . . Taken from his family, Toby now lives in the Death House. Isolated from the outside world the inhabitants of are watched for any signs of a mysterious illness . . . Clara was a girl who had everything. Adored by her friends and her family, her life was destined for greatness. Now, Clara is the newest resident of the Death House and she’s determined not to allow her life to end there. This is Toby and Clara’s story.

Next Lucie at Picador sent me The Reminders by Val Emmich!  I requested it afer having seen pictures of it on Twitter.

Overcome with the loss of his boyfriend Sydney, Gavin Winters has set fire to every reminder in their home. A neighbour has captured the blaze on video, turning this little-known TV actor into a household name. Gavin flees LA for New Jersey, where he hopes that ten-year-old Joan, the daughter of a close friend, can reconnect him with the memories of Sydney he is now in danger of losing for ever. Joan was born with a rare ability to recall every single day of her life in perfect detail, and in return for sharing her memories of Sydney, Gavin will help her write a song for a local competition. For Joan has had enough of being the girl who can’t forget – she wants to be the girl who will never be forgotten . . . Charming, beautifully observed, poignant and funny, The Reminders by actor and musician Val Emmich is an irresistible story of the unlikely friendship between a grief-stricken man who can’t remember and a ten-year-old girl who can’t forget.

and last but not least in any way Michael Joseph Books sent me My Name is Nobody by Matthew Richardson.

Solomon Vine was the best of his generation, a spy on a fast track to the top. But when a prisoner is shot in unexplained circumstances, and on his watch, only suspension and exile beckon. Three months later, in Istanbul, MI6’s Head of Station is violently abducted from his home. With the Service in lockdown, uncertain of who can be trusted, thoughts turn to the missing man’s oldest friend: Solomon Vine. Officially suspended, Vine can operate outside the chain of command to uncover the truth. But his investigation soon reveals that the disappearance heralds something much darker. And that there’s much more at stake than the life of a single spy . . .

Now to show you all the books i naughtily bought myself!

I adored the Harry Potter series like so many millions of readers but i’ve not bought them in any other form since they came out the first time round but once i saw the new ‘House editions’ I knew i had to have one and being a Hufflepuff it was the yellow one for me, and how gorgeous it is too with the sprayed edges for goodness sake!

 

 

 

The Descent of Man by Grayson Perry, Man Up by Jack Urwin and The Gender Games by Juno Dawson are all on the theme of men and gender which is something i’m fascinated by and have to admit I hadnt thought much about before so I am gonna love reading these.

I couldnt resist the next two mainly due to their gorgeous new matching covers. Lorali and Aurabel by Laura Dockrill sound so good and I’ve not heard a bad thing about Lorali so it was a no brainer! And The Serpent King & Goodbye Days by Jeff Zentner both looked and sounded so good and they have been so highly recommended on You Tube that I had to see for myself.  Dont they make a great package?

 

 

I am so, so, so, so late to the party when it comes to Philip Pullmans His Dark Materials. I did read Book 1 a good many years back but never got around to the rest but since reading a sneaky first chapter of his new upcoming Prequel, The Book of Dust coming out in October I knew i had to read me the others first. I loved the chapter so much I have pre-ordered me a copy.  I just adore these new covers too with the shiny parts and the oh so subtle design, so much better than the previous garish ones, IMHO.

 

And finally, I really fancied some poetry and it has to be modern poetry nowadays. I just cant read the old classics right now, dont ask me why! ( I said, dont) Having heard good things about Plum by Holly McNish I had to get me a copy.

 

 

 

 

Well there you have it.  A very tasty selection I think you’ll agree.

What books have you bought this month?

What do you think of my choices, and what books would you recommend based on these?

 

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June (proof copies) TBR

I’m going against type here by choosing a TBR coz by nature im a mood reader but I badly need to read some of the gorgeous proofs I get sent and these five are making my mouth water in a BIG way!

I asked those gorgeous folk at Vintage Books for a copy of Bluets and The Red Parts by Maggie Nelson and they kindly sent them to me. They are both published tomorrow 1st June. Look how bloody lovely those covers are too.

Stevie over at Gollancz very kindly sent me Black Wing by Ed McDonald after i requested a copy. It has gosh darn wonderful black sprayed edges and the story sounds quite thrilling.

False Hearts by Laura Lam is another gorgeous book and one I have long been waiting for to arrive in paperback form. Another sprayed edge beauty, this time in red. I really cant wait to dive in to this one.

And last but never least Moonrise by Sarah Crossan. I was beyond thrilled to get a copy of this from the splendid folk at Bloomsbury.  I adored Sarah’s book One which i read in 2015 i think so cant wait to start this one. Its published in July.

Well there you have it on paper.

I have stated five books I want to read in June.  See you back here in one month to see how well i did.

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Victoria sponge holds no fears for me now!

I asked my son what kind of cake he wanted for his birthday and he chose a Victoria sponge! I was all ready to bake a sticky ginger cake or a lemon drizzle both of which he loves so when he asked for this i was like

I’m an average baker with many failed bakes behind me so I wasnt confident of success but I found me a Mary Berry Recipe. I mean she is not called the Queen of baking for nothing. Anyhow I followed her all-in-one recipe (i.e you bung all ingredients in at same time and blitz them with an electric mixer) and this was the result.

I was thrilled with it and son said it was amazing, so job done!

Thanks Mary you are Star baker this week!

Here is a link to the recipe if you fancy giving it a go

http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/mary_berrys_perfect_34317

send me pics, let me know how it went

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A book haul did you say? dont mind if i do!

Just a quick post to share with you some of the splendiferous books that I appear to have acquired recently. They seem to magnetically attach to my hands! No idea how it happens but hey, whos complaining?

First we have some rather lovely books i was sent by those splendid folk called publishers

I am especially excited to have New Boy by Tracy Chevalier as its part of the Hogarth Shakespeare re-imagined series. I now own almost 4 (one is in the post to me as i type) out of the 8 books they are publishing where modern days authors re-imagine a selection of  Shakespeare plays.


I also bought a few books myself (well I am a bookaholic so no excuses needed eh?)

What a stack!

I am so excited to have a copy of Replica at last plus The Hate You Give and you can see another two books in the Hogarth Shakespeare series here; A Gap in Time and My name is Shylock.

I’ll be doing a post on all the books in the series later in the month.

Anything you fancy here?   Or do you have any book recs for me? (they are always welcome)

 

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A Life Discarded – I wish i’d found them

This is my current read

Its about 148 diaries found thrown away in a skip back in 2001 i think it was.  How i’d love to have found those!  Its my dream to find old diaries, documents, journals and photos at bootfairs and the like.  I am such a nosy parker into the past and peoples lives, its true.

But look at the cover, especially the quote on the top right.

Yes! Benedict Cumberbatch says he couldnt put it down! What more incentive do i need to read it than this?

Incidentally, I am gripped so far!

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