27/03/2020

First Book Review of 2020

Whilst we all suddenly seem to have more time, which means more reading, these are the ones I have read so I thought I would do a book review …

Whilst we all suddenly seem to have more time, which means more reading, these are the ones I have read so I thought I would do a book review …

With the whole coronavirus situation, we seem to have a whole lot of time on our hands huh? But even before this all escalated, I was trying to spend a little bit more time each night focussing on a book, rather than Tik Tok. Yes. I have fallen into the Tik Tok hole and I am partly ashamed and partly very amused. That is not why we are here though. I am not going to sit here and pretend I have read 10 books between January and March. Because I will be open and honest to the fact reading is not always my strong point. Nonetheless I wanted to do a review on the ones I did read. 

So between January and March we have four books ticked off the list. I know for you book enthusiasts is a bit lack luster. However some took me a bit longer to read than others. There is a little bit of fiction and non-fiction though. Treat this as a bit of a virtual book club. Yeah? Well here are my reviews *and the crowd screams and applauds*… 

READER, I MARRIED ME – SOPHIE TANNER (gifted)

Brighton based Chloe had her heart set on moving in and growing old with her long term partner Ant. But after finding out his secrets which lead to her having multiple heartbreaks, she decided to focus on herself. She was over the social stigma of being in a relationship, as for her it always ended in despair. Instead, she vowed to love herself, find happiness in being independent and the best way to do that was to marry herself. Chloe finds herself going viral after her drunken blog post about her newly found love for herself was taken with very mixed opinions. From work drama, to a whole TV show being filmed around the wedding Chloe had to overcome obstacles and hurdles to find herself acceptance. 

My thoughts – I pretty much read this book entirely across three days of bulk reading. Its one of those books that you don’t want to put down. Its very heart warming and fuzzy with an equal measure of witty humour too. The heartbreak that Chloe goes through yet her determination to carry on in situations a lot of people would dread is very inspiring. I love how modern the novel is, and very real too. Also I want to give credit to Sophie as an author, because the amount of different twists she put in here and all the way through the book left me gobsmacked. You think Chloe would be on a set path and then something else happens.

So well thought out, and the fact its all about self acceptance is really important. Its an obvious underlying message, covered by real life issues, and even though a lot of people would go through the practice of sologamy, the message of being able to be single and not justify your self is something people need to know more about. I laughed out loud and felt very attached to the characters. Just a wonderful book all round! 4 stars.

OPPOSITE OF ALWAYS – JUSTIN A REYNOLDS

This debut novel of Justin’s is a heart-touching display of friendship and romance, whilst knowing and understanding the right and wrong paths in life. Jack and Kate meet at a house party and fall in love over their mutual connection of cereals and quirky personalities. Jack, who is as relatable to a teen as a character could get falls hard for Kate as she even gets approval from his best friends Jillian and Franny. However fate doesn’t last when Kate dies. Though, Jack gets taken back to the beginning, again and again and again. Jack doesn’t know whats happening, just that he knows he has to do something to save Kate.

My thoughts – I actually really liked this book. The whole concept of time travel is something I haven’t read before, however the strong bond the Jack and Kate have makes you fall in love with their characters. The tone of the book too is informal, making it a very easy read and page turner. Its also very informative, of sickle cell disease, something that I had never heard about before, but then did read up about.

This story really goes to show the length that one person would go to to try and save the one you love. From saving friendships and going to any length its quite awe inspiring. But considering the storyline is made to be repetitive, each section changes in twists that you wouldn’t have thought. I managed to get through this book fairly quickly, as the chatty nature to the characters makes the story fast paced. However not one that I would reach to, to read again, its not the soppy romantic book – more of an action filled teenage book. 3 stars.

HASHTAG AUTHENTIC – SARA TASKER

The non-fiction book of the group discuss all the Instagram essentials from experience of an Instagram Master. Sara Tasker gave her day to day NHS career when her Instagram based around her pregnancy and then raising her daughter gained over 35,000 followers. Now she has one awards for her coaching of running an instagram page. From photography, to hashtags and lifestyle she released Hashtag Authentic to help others who are wishing to venture into the online world. 

My thoughts – My mum bought my this for Christmas and she wasn’t too sure whether I would find it helpful or not. I read this book very quickly. Being a non-fiction book the typeface was larger than normal novels and the array of images makes it an easy flick through type of book. It is full of tasks to enable you to get the most out of your photography and Instagram and it creates a community feel to the book. I think this book would be good for those who are starting out. As an established blogger, I already know quite a few of the tips and sections she was talking about.

I also think this is better for the more mature readers – as in if you are a younger person looking to start a blog, this is probably for all the 20+ who want to start utilising Instagram. I wouldn’t suggest it for bloggers who already have a sense of Instagram. However it was packed full of the essentials you do need. I think it was good at highlighting everything in a very calm and mature manner. Very countryside, peaceful and relaxing vibes – most likely because a lot of the photography was like this. 2.5 stars (only because I knew the tips). 

THE SUMMER OF IMPOSSIBLE THINGS – ROWAN COLEMAN

Luna and her family travel to the home place of their late mother. After the sudden lost of their mother, and still dealing with the pain they travel over to settle the agreement of their mums family home with their estranged aunt. Whilst over their Luna conquers the impossible. She finds herself able to travel back in time. She meets her mother as a young women in the summer of 1977. But after she finds out about the terrible affair her mum went through, which eventually led to her death, she knows there is a reason she is able to transport through time. She has to save her mothers life, but in turn this will sacrifice her own. 

I won’t beat around the bushes, and I will admit this took me longer to get into than I thought it would. I am very much a romance heartthrob book type of person and the whole time transport thing seemed a bit complex at times. But I had to reread a few sections to really picture it. But towards the later part of the novel, it became a bit more thought provoking and plausible.

The writing style is very mystical, almost fairytale like, which looking back sits alongside the suspended belief of the time travelling plot. The 1970s New York felt very descriptive and for me came to life especially towards the end of the book. I am defiantly glad that I read it, as I don’t think I have read a book quite like it. Its affirming and poignant however not a book I would reach to to reread. 3 stars. 


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