2017/09/25

BOOK REVIEW:
YOU SHOULD HAVE LEFT BY DANIEL KEHLMANN

Title: You Should Have Left
Author: Daniel Kehlmann, Ross Benjamin (translator)
Published: 2016
Language: English (translated from German)
Pages: 114
Rating: 4/5


Summary:
A writer and his family spend seven days in a house in the mountains and as he recounts his experiences in his notebook, it's clear that things are not as they should be...


Review:
Excuse my language, but holy shit, this was creepy. I might have to sleep with the light on tonight!

I don't even know where to begin with this book, but it's the best story of a haunted house I've ever read; probably because you can't quite figure out how it's haunted. In only a little over a hundred pages, this place comes to life and bends expectations and the laws of reality, and it's so disturbing and alarming.

The story is written in a really interesting way as well; there are weird things happening quite early on, but you don't know what it means, you just know something is off, and when you reach the end, you can't help but flip back and get goosebumps.

Honestly, this was terrifying. And yet I'm left fascinated. I would definitely recommend it, although maybe read it during the day.
You can get this book at The Book Depository
You can read more about it on Goodreads
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2017/09/23

BOOK REVIEW:
MISS RANSKILL COMES HOME BY BARBARA EUPHAN-TODD

Title: Miss Ranskill Comes Home
Author: Barbara Euphan-Todd
Published: 1946
Language: English
Pages: 330
Rating: 3/5


Summary:
Having been swept overboard while on a cruise, Miss Ranskill has spent three years on a desert island before being rescued in 1943, only to come home to a war-torn England she has a hard time to come to grips with.


Review:
I quite liked this book and definitely enjoyed reading it.

It's a book tinged with both humor and a certain sadness and bitterness. The main characters struggles both on the island and returning home to England are interesting, frustrating and funny, and overall Miss Ranskill is a robust character with a good heart, which makes one enjoy reading about her.

The setting of England during the war is very well done, and the characters you meet in this book are fascinating. The writing is also very good and it captures the time so well. I do think the story is a bit too slow in parts, especially towards the middle, but other than that, it really is a very good novel.

It's an oddly charming book and one I would definitely recommend to anyone who enjoys British literature and the WWII period.
You can get this book at The Book Depository
You can read more about it on Goodreads
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2017/09/22

2017/09/19

THINGS I LIKE NO. 5

I think it's safe to say that autumn is here to stay (at least for a while), and I wanted to share with you something I absolutely love for this season: hot chocolate from Whittard!

I've never been much of a coffee or tea drinker, so hot chocolate has always been my hot beverage of choice, and these two are some of my favorites. The first one is the White Hot Chocolate one, which is very sweet but I love, and the second one is the classic Luxury Hot Chocolate!


There's nothing like making a cup of one of these after coming home from work and snuggling up on the sofa with a book. They're also extra lovely if you add a bit of whipped cream at the top, which I often do!
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2017/09/18

BOOK REVIEW:
A IS FOR ALIBI BY SUE GRAFTON

Title: A Is For Alibi
Author: Sue Grafton
Published: 1982
Language: English
Pages: 345
Rating: 3/5

This is the first book in the Kinsey Millhone series.


Summary:
Former cop turned detective Kinsey Millhone is sought out by a woman convicted of killing her husband and hires her to find out who really killed him.


Review:
This was a good and solid mystery novel.

I quite liked the main character; she's down to earth and somewhat relatable, though I don't feel I really managed to grasp her or connect to her completely. She drives the story forward and it's through her eyes we see the story unfold, which works really well. There's quite a lot of characters in this book though, and I'll be honest; I struggled in some points to remember who was an ex-wife, who was a former mistress, who was the son of the ex-wife of the... wait a minute... I'm not sure if that's just me that didn't concentrate enough, but I usually don't struggle with that in other books.

The setting of L. A. was surprisingly good; you get a really good sense of the time, the place and an atmosphere of the non-rich vibe of the city. There's a lot of twists and turns in this book, and I feel the story has a good balance; it's fast-paced, but not rash, it's action-packed but not ridiculously so, and the mystery is intriguing, if somewhat predictable in parts. I do think it ended a bit abruptly, but I can't really think of another way it could have been done. I was also not overly fond of the romance aspects.

It's not a story I felt emotionally invested in, but it certainly was enjoyable. I'd say this is a great read if you enjoy crime, law and mystery with a cool female protagonist. I liked it enough to want to read more books in this series and see where it takes Millhone next.
You can get this book at The Book Depository
You can read more about it on Goodreads
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2017/09/16

AMSTERDAM HAUL:
BOOKS + CLOTHES

Last weekend, I went to Amsterdam for my birthday with my sister, and even though I wasn't planning on really getting anything, we did a wee bit of shopping. We even found a Waterstones, which is dangerous for any booklover (especially when it has several floors). So, I picked up a nice little stack of books that I can't wait to read!

Amsterdam was a joy to visit and I definitely want to go back someday and do some more exploring. In the meanwhile, I'll have these books to read, plus a few new clothes to wear (you can see those in the video!)














You may have already seen it, but if you want to see a vlog from the trip, you can find it here. It's a fantastic city and I definitely want to go back someday (not only for the bookstores, I promise!)
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2017/09/15

2017/09/12

BOOKSTAGRAM SPOTLIGHT:
@WHITE_BOOK_COTTAGE

It's time for some more bookstagram love, and this time I think you should take a look at @white_book_cottage! I adore this account and seeing what books appear on her feed!




Go follow!
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2017/09/11

BOOK REVIEW:
THE JAPANESE LOVER BY ISABEL ALLENDE

Title: The Japanese Lover
Author: Isabel Allende, Nick Caistor (translator), Amanda Hopkinson (translator)
Published: 2015
Language: English (translated from Spanish)
Pages: 336
Rating: 2/5


Summary:
This is a multigenerational story of history, redemption, identity, fate and above all; love.


Review:
All right. So I knew when I picked this up, I might not love it, as I usually don't fall head over heels for love stories; and I was right. I didn't.

I don't think this is a bad book at all; it's probably a fairly good book, but it just wasn't really for me. The characters are interesting enough, the setting is very good and I really enjoyed reading about the historical and cultural parts of this story. I just don't often care about these kinds of love stories, and this was no exception.

I do think this book tries to take on more than it can carry; it discusses a wide range of different societal topics, and because there are so many of them, a lot of them are left unexplored when they really need time and space to truly be worth anything. There's a lot going on in this book and because of it, nothing really has the opportunity to blossom; it's squashed under the weight of all this other stuff going on.

This probably wasn't the best book to start with on my journey of reading the works of Allende, but I'm not as discouraged as I may seem; I think some of her other works will work much better for me, and I'll be interested to give them a go.
You can get this book at The Book Depository
You can read more about it on Goodreads
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2017/09/08

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