Weekly Reading

Hi, you may have noticed that I have been posting much. As I have started a new chapter of my life, I have found it hard to work out how I want blogging to fit into my new life. I think I have found the answer though, an in depth weekly review that goes over all the bookish news I had in my life.

Books Read

This week I read 7 books:

Pretty Little Liars by Sara Shepard

I never watched the Netflix show when it was all the rage a few years ago, though I did want to read the books. I only managed to read the first one, so I thought that I would read them all.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and the mystery within. Whilst I found the characters to be vain and vapid on the hole, I think that that’s half the point and still enjoyed the read. I said to my friends that it’s like a takeaway, you feel good whilst reading it, then feel dirty afterwards.

3 stars
Flawless by Sara Shepard
3 stars
Books V. Cigarettes by George Orwell

I picked up this great ideas book whilst browsing in waterstones. I found it fascinating, not only to hear what he had to say on the subject of readers, but to see ideas that would later feature heavily in 1984, being a major feature of his thoughts years before.

5 stars
The Furies by Katie Lowe

I went to a talk hosted by the author as part of my university’s book festival, whilst the talk itself was fascinating, the book was fairly bad. I found it hard to keep track of characters, and the deep themes that seemed to be in the books were hardly there at all (unless you had a wide knowledge of art).

3 stars

I borrowed a selection of comic books from my library and read them on my phone. I enjoyed all of them, but they are not the sort of thing that I would know how to review. I gave them all the same rating.

Adulthood is a myth by Sarah Andersen
Herding cats by Sarah Andersen
Man, I hate cursive by Jim Benton
5 stars

Currently Reading

A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin

Summers span decades. Winter can last a lifetime. And the struggle for the Iron Throne has begun.

As Warden of the north, Lord Eddard Stark counts it a curse when King Robert bestows on him the office of the Hand. His honour weighs him down at court where a true man does what he will, not what he must…and a dead enemy is a thing of beauty.

The old gods have no power in the south, Stark’s family is split and there is treachery at court. Worse, the vengeance-mad heir of the deposed Dragon King has grown to maturity in exile in the Free Cities. He claims the Iron Throne.

Mrs Rosie and the Priest by Giovanni Boccaccio

Four hilarious and provocative stories from Boccaccio’s Decameron, featuring cuckolded husbands, cross-dressing wives and very bad priests.

Introducing Little Black Classics: 80 books for Penguin’s 80th birthday. Little Black Classics celebrate the huge range and diversity of Penguin Classics, with books from around the world and across many centuries. They take us from a balloon ride over Victorian London to a garden of blossom in Japan, from Tierra del Fuego to 16th-century California and the Russian steppe. Here are stories lyrical and savage; poems epic and intimate; essays satirical and inspirational; and ideas that have shaped the lives of millions.

Books I Bought This Week

I bought six books this week, though one I have already read.

The furies by Katie Lowe

 1998, a sixteen-year-old girl is found dead on school property, dressed in white and posed on a swing, with no known cause of death. The novel opens with this image, as related to us by the narrator, Violet, looking back on the night it happened from the present day, before returning to relate the series of events leading up to the girl’s murder.

After an accident involving her Dad and sister, Violet joins Elm Hollow Academy, a private girls school in a quiet coastal town, which has an unpleasant history as the site of famous 17th century witch trials. Violet quickly finds herself invited to become the fourth member of an advanced study group, alongside Robin, Grace, and Alex – led by their charismatic art teacher, Annabel.

While Annabel claims her classes aren’t related to ancient rites and rituals – warning the girls off the topic, describing it as little more than mythology – the girls start to believe that magic is real, and that they can harness it. But when the body of a former member of the society – Robin’s best friend, with whom Violet shares an uncanny resemblance – is found dead on campus nine months after she disappeared, Violet begins to wonder whether she can trust her friends, teachers, or even herself.

Inferior by Angela Saini

From intelligence to emotion, for centuries science has told us that men and women are fundamentally different. But this is not the whole story.

Shedding light on controversial research and investigating the ferocious gender wars in biology, psychology and anthropology, Angela Saini takes readers on an eye-opening journey to uncover how women are being rediscovered. She explores what these revelations mean for us as individuals and as a society, revealing an alternative view of science in which women are included, rather than excluded. 

On the shortness of life by Seneca

The Stoic writings of the philosopher Seneca offer powerful insights into the art of living, the importance of reason and morality, and continue to provide profound guidance to many through their eloquence, lucidity and timeless wisdom.

Throughout history, some books have changed the world. They have transformed the way we see ourselves—and each other. They have inspired debate, dissent, war and revolution. They have enlightened, outraged, provoked and comforted. They have enriched lives—and destroyed them.

Meditations by Marcus Aurelius

Written in Greek, without any intention of publication, by the only Roman emperor who was also a philosopher, the Meditations of Marcus Aurelius (AD 121-180) offer a remarkable series of challenging spiritual reflections and exercises developed as the emperor struggled to understand himself and make sense of the universe.

Ranging from doubt and despair to conviction and exaltation, they cover such diverse topics as the nature of moral virtue, human rationality, divine providence, and Marcus’ own emotions.

But while the Meditations were composed to provide personal consolation and encouragement, in developing his beliefs Marcus Aurelius also created one of the greatest of all works of philosophy: a timeless collection of extended meditations and short aphorisms that has been consulted and admired by statesmen, thinkers and readers through the centuries. 

As Kingfishers Catch Fire by Gerard Manley Hopkins

‘O let them be left, wildness and wet’

As Kingfishers Catch Fire is a selection of Gerard Manley Hopkins’ incomparably brilliant poetry, ranging from the ecstasy of ‘The Windhover’ and ‘Pied Beauty’ to the heart-wrenching despair of the ‘sonnets of desolation’.

The Saga of Gunnlaug Serpent-tongue

‘In two I’ll slice the hair-seat / of Helga’s kiss-gulper’

In this epic tale from the Viking Age that ranges across Scandinavia and Viking Britain, two poets compete for the love of Helga the Fair – with fatal consequences.

Weekly TBR

LIFEL1K3 by Jay Kristoff

It’s just another day on the Scrap: lose the last of your credits at the WarDome, dodge the gangs and religious fanatics, discover you can destroy electronics with your mind, stumble upon the deadliest robot ever built…

When Eve finds the ruins of an android boy named Ezekiel in the scrap pile she calls home, her entire world comes crashing down. With her best friend and her robotic sidekick in tow, she and Ezekiel will trek across deserts of irradiated glass, battle cyborg assassins, and scour abandoned megacities to save the ones she loves…and learn the dark secrets of her past.

Deviate by Jay Kristoff
As Kingfishers Catch Fire by Gerard Manley Hopkins
On the shortness of life by Seneca
A Clash of Kings by George R.R. Martin

A comet the color of blood and flame cuts across the sky. Two great leaders—Lord Eddard Stark and Robert Baratheon—who hold sway over an age of enforced peace are dead, victims of royal treachery. Now, from the ancient citadel of Dragonstone to the forbidding shores of Winterfell, chaos reigns. Six factions struggle for control of a divided land and the Iron Throne of the Seven Kingdoms, preparing to stake their claims through tempest, turmoil, and war.

It is a tale in which brother plots against brother and the dead rise to walk in the night. Here a princess masquerades as an orphan boy; a knight of the mind prepares a poison for a treacherous sorceress; and wild men descend from the Mountains of the Moon to ravage the countryside. Against a backdrop of incest and fratricide, alchemy and murder, victory may go to the men and women possessed of the coldest steel…and the coldest hearts. For when kings clash, the whole land trembles.

Perfect by Sara Sheppard

Aria can’t resist her forbidden ex. Hanna is on the verge of losing her BFF. Emily is freaking out over a simple kiss. And Spencer can’t keep her hands off anything that belongs to her sister.

Lucky me. I know these pretty little liars better than they know themselves. But it’s hard keeping all of their secrets to myself. They better do as I say… or else!

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