Friday, 24 April 2015

Book Worm - What's on my Kindle?

One of my main goals for 2015 (other than run marathon, eat less rubbish etc etc) was to read more. Easier said that done - while it might not involve lacing up a pair of trainers or turning down a slice of cake, in an increasingly connected world it's sometimes hard to find a spare ten minutes to read a book. I've always loved reading (I'm sure every student who signs up to do a law degree does only to find that three years of reading law books only makes you want to read Grazia in your downtime) and wanted to reconnect with the girl who used to love nothing more than a good book. It also turns out that half an hour of pre-bed reading is far more conducive to a good night's sleep than continually dropping your phone on your face while WhatsApping in bed...

I don't have a particular "type" when it comes to books other than a "no chick lit rule". I guiltily download everything to my Kindle which I love as it's never not in my bag (the paperback of Cloud Atlas is pretty chunky) but really do need to start using my local library more because...free books! Continuing the theme of 2015 goals, I've recently joined a new bookclub (new hobby - tick!) so hopefully that will motivate me even further to continue reading.

1. Margaret Atwood - MaddAddam

My first book of 2015. This is actually the third in a trilogy so it was bittersweet to finish it (Oryx and Crake and Year of The Flood are parts one and two). Set in a future world which sometimes seems all-too-familiar, this trilogy combines speculative fiction with a strong female voice. I loved the dark humour and that the characters don't get lost along with the underlying message.

2. David Mitchell - Cloud Atlas

This book requires some work. The first 100 pages were quite difficult to get through but I'm so glad I persevered. There's really nothing I can compare this book to - interlinked stories flow through the novel set in different places, historical periods and told from different character's points of view. Parts are laugh out loud hilarious, parts are tragic and parts are just downright confusing but this book is like nothing else I've ever read. Reading it feels like an epic journey, appropriately enough for the title.

3. Haruki Murakami - A Wild Sheep Chase and Dance Dance Dance

So these books are part 3 and 4 in Murakami's "The Rat" series. Unfortunately, the first two books (Hear The Wind Sing and Pinball 1973) are not available in English but that doesn't detract from the enjoyment of these two. I actually read Dance Dance Dance first without realising that there was a prequel. The nameless author is flawed but likeable in his quest to find a nameless girlfriend from his past. As a lover of Japanese culture, this made me want to book a flight to Tokyo (and made me wonder whether "ear model" is an actual career...).

4. Haruki Murakami - Colourless Tsukuru Tazaki And His Years of Pilgrimage

The most recent Murakami novel, this obviously came up on my "recommended for you" page after reading the above two books. The central character is colourless in pretty much every meaning of the word as he looks to his past to discover why his high school friends abandoned him. Without giving anything away, I found the ending a bit of a let down and didn't love this as much as "The Rat" books but it was still a nice mental visit to Japan.

4. Paula Hawkins - The Girl on the Train

Just like the post-Twilight vampire novel explosion, the female-main-character-Gone-Girl-esque book seems to be the current literary trend. This changed the way I think about train journeys and featured a very different female lead to Gone Girl. I speed through this in a few days and while the book slipped from my brain pretty quickly afterwards it would make a great holiday or, appropriately, long train journey read.

5. Gillian Flynn - Sharp Objects 

The author of Gone Girl was always going to have a tough act to follow but this is just as, if not more, disturbing. The crime story develops throughout the novel but just how Gone Girl put marriage under the microscope this explores family relationships, communities and (without giving anything away) tackles some pretty hard-hitting subjects.

What have you read recently?

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2 comments

  1. Love this! The Girl on the Train and Sharp Objects both made it onto my list of beach reads so this post made me beyond excited for summer!

    - Elodie x
    www.elle-yeah.com

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  2. My 'to read' list is the longest list ever. I love going through it. I'm actually reading MaddAddam now. I read the first two and loved them so much.

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