Top Ten Tuesday 12/12/17- Best Books of 2017quora

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week is going to be big, with your top ten favourite books of 2017 being the topic. Note: these aren’t necessarily books that were published in 2017, they’re merely great books that I read this year.

Credit Image 1, Credit Image 2, Credit Image 3

  1. See You in the Cosmos, Jack Cheng. A beautifully told story about a boy with a mishap family who tries to launch his iPod-carrying rocket into space.
  2. A Semi Definitive List of Worst Nightmares, Krystal Sutherland. I loved this story’s creative storyline and even more creative characters. The ending left me a little confused but overall a great read.
  3. The Loneliest Girl in the Universe, Lauren James. A great book for so many reasons. At a glance it seems like your typical YA romance (crossed with the not so typical idea that the girl lives in outer space). Trust me, it’s taking all of my self control to not just spoil the entire novel. A must read.
  4. Book Thief, Markus Zuzak. One of those inspirational books that everyone should pick up sometime in their life.
  5. Finding Audrey, Sophie Kinsella. This book was both funny and moving in a way that I’m still trying to grasp. I would absolutely recommend this book to anyone.

    This slideshow requires JavaScript.

    Credit Image 1, Credit Image 2, Credit Image 3Credit Image 4Credit Image 5

  6. Flawed (& Perfect, the 2nd book), Cecelia Ahern. Flawed was a great YA dystopian novel which really made me think about society’s expectations. Perfect, the sequel, was released this year and was equally gripping.
  7. Geek Girl Finale; Forever Geek, Holly Smale. The perfect finale to a great series, Forever Geek was certainly the ending I had hoped for. Plus, it was set in Australia which just added to the fun.
  8. Not if I See You First, Eric Lindstrom. A humorously honest book about a girl who is blind. While the novel covers some sadder topics, it remains easy to read due to its wit and humour. I nearly called it eye opening but then realised that that would just be bad.
  9. Heartless, Marissa Meyer. This is the first and only book of Marissa Meyer’s that I’ve read. I really enjoyed this take on the classic tale of Alice in Wonderland.
  10. More Than This, Patrick Ness. This was a book that really made me think. While it was rather long and to be honest, just a little confusing, I still thoroughly enjoyed it.

What great books have you read this year? Leave a link to your TTT for this week & I’ll be sure to stop by. Happy Tuesday 🙂

Advertisements

WWW Wednesday- 06/12/17

WWW Wednesday is currently hosted by Sam @ Taking on a World of Words. The three questions are: What have you recently finished reading? What are you currently reading? What are you planning to read next?

Recently finished?

I just finished Boone Shepard by Gabriel Bergmoser. It was a really interesting and fast-paced novel about time travel, detective work, murder and a number of other things. The  story is broken up into three parts, with the first and last mostly set in 1965 and the second set in 1882. This feature was something I really liked about the book. I am looking forward to read the 2nd book in the series, Boone’s American Adventure, in the near future.

Currently reading?

I am currently listening to an audiobook of Do Elephants Have Knees? and Other Stories of Darwinian Origins, by Charles R. Ault Jr. It’s quite interesting and I’m enjoying listening to snippets of it every now and then.

Before I started Boone Shepard, I decided to read Jacqueline Wilson’s Illustrated Mum as it has been on my shelf for ages. I stopped reading part of the way in but am planning to pick it up again now that I’ve finished some of the other books I was planning to read. I really liked Jacqueline Wilson’s book when I was younger and am hoping that they’ll still be interesting for me now.

Planning to read next?

I have many different books that I want to read next. Some of these include:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Credit Image 1     Credit Image 2     Credit Image 3

What have you been reading lately? Feel free to leave me the link to your WWW below. Happy Wednesday 🙂

Review- See You in the Cosmos, Jack Cheng

See You in the Cosmos was a beautifully written story about, and mostly told by, a young boy who dreams of launching his ‘Golden iPod’ into space.

The majority of the story is told from the innocent point of view of Alex, who is making a series of audio recordings on his previously mentioned ‘Golden iPod’. I really enjoyed reading the story from Alex’s young, naïve point of view as it helped to create a humorous aspect to the story that otherwise wouldn’t exist. The structure of the novel, audio transcripts from Alex’s iPod, was also very unique and reminded me of another, mostly unrelated, novel that I read earlier this year, The Loneliest Girl in the Universe by Lauren James, which also used audio recordings as a way to tell the story.

Aside from the point of view and structure, the rest of the story flowed really smoothly; the characters were both creative and relatable and the storyline was constantly moving. A short novel, I could have easily read it all in one go. I decided, however, to read it slowly in an attempt to savour the beautiful story.

Overall, See You in the Cosmos was a sweet, funny and inspirational novel that readers of all ages could enjoy. 4 stars!

WWW Wednesday- 29/11/17

Can you believe that this is the last Wednesday of November? One of the last days of November in fact? I for one can’t believe that December (and Christmas :)) are just around the corner.

As I’m sure most of you know, WWW Wednesday is currently hosted by Sam @ Taking on a World of Words. The three questions are: What have you recently finished reading? What are you currently reading? What are you planning to read next?

1. Recently finished reading?

I recently finished reading Melissa Keil’s novel, The Secret Science of Magic and really enjoyed it. Set in Melbourne, it’s a cute love story between two unlikely teenagers, a genius and a magician. You can see my full length review here.

 

2. Currently reading?

I’m currently in the middle of reading See you in the Cosmos by Jack Cheng, a really unique road trip- style novel about an 11 year old boy who wants to launch his ‘Golden iPod’ into space. Wri

tten from a very innocent perspective and told in a series of audio recordings, See you in the Cosmos is certainly shaping up to be a great read. I’m hoping to have a review published by early next week.

3. Planning to read next?

I’ve decided to try and work through some of the books that I currently have on my bookcase, rather than finding more at the library. One book that I’ve been planning to read for a while is Fish out of Water by Natalie Whipple. I looks like a funny and light hearted read, perfect for the start of summer.

What are your answers to the three Ws? Feel free to leave the link to your WWW below and I’ll be sure to check it out. Happy Wednesday. 🙂

Top Ten Tuesday 28/11- My Summer TBR

Top Ten Tuesday is a reoccurring meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. The topic for this week is about the top ten books on your winter TBR. As I live in the southern hemisphere, I’m changing this to my summer TBR instead. So, without further ado, the books that I’m planning/hoping to read this summer:

Credit Image 1, Credit Image 2, Credit Image 3

  1. Fish out of Water, Natalie Whipple. This one seems like a fun, light-hearted summer read.
  2. Emmy and the Home for Troubled Girls, Lynne Jonell. There’s something about the title that just really interests me, I’m hoping that the novel itself will be just as interesting.
  3. Friday Barnes #1, R.A. Spratt. A series that I’ve been meaning to read for a while, now that summer’s rolling around hopefully I can set aside some time to read it.
  4. Kite, Melvin Burgess. Quite an old book, I’m not quite sure what about it interests me. It’s less than 200 pages long so I may as well give it a go.
  5. Mirror Mirror, Gregory Maguire. While it’s more of a winter read in terms of the setting, I couldn’t resist adding this Snow White inspired novel to my summer TBR.
  6. Summer of the Gypsy Moths, Sara Pennypacker. I started reading this book a while back but didn’t end up finishing it. I’m hoping that I’ll like it better now that it’s actually summer.
  7. Once, Morris Gleitzman. I’ve reader books from later in this series but never the first book. I have decided that I should read this one before I pick up the latest release, Maybe.
  8. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time. Another book from a few years back, hopefully I can finally get around to reading it this summer.
  9. The School for Good and Evil #2 (A World Without Princes), Soman Chainani. I read and enjoyed the first book from this series a few months ago and am planning to read the second and third books before I move onto the fourth book which was only just released.

Feel free to leave any comments down below. Happy Tuesday! 🙂

Review- Stranger Than Fan-fiction by Chris Colfer

I was disappointed by Chis Colfer’s novel, Stranger than Fan-fiction. Before reading this book I expected this novel to be as fun and quirky as the name, however, I was disappointed by how ‘two dimensional’ the characters came across as.

While I enjoyed the novel’s sense of humour and could understand its attempt to include a wide range of diverse characters, I felt that none of the characters grew past the stereotypical category that they were given. Despite changing perspective, I felt that I never grew particularly close to any of the characters which was disappointing considering how much of the story focused on the character’s diversities.

Apart from the characters, the rest of the story was relatively interesting. The novel incorporates a classic road trip story with the creative idea of a celebrity joining along for the ride. This aspect was something that really interested me and led me to think about the real personality of some of the most popular celebrities.

Overall, I would rate this book a solid 3 stars. While I was disappointed by the characterisation, the rest of the novel flowed pretty smoothly. I would recommend this novel as a light summer read.

The Secret Science of Magic, Melissa Keil

After reading and enjoying Melissa Keil’s novel, The Incredible Adventures of Cinnamon Girl, picking up this novel seemed like an absolute no brainer.

Set in rainy Melbourne, The Secret Science of Magic is a beautifully written story of friendship and love between two unlikely teenage characters; a genius and a magician. The story incorporates a unique blend of loveable characters of all backgrounds and personalities, helping to make the story incredibly interesting. Sophia, or ‘the genius’ would have to be my favourite character; she is socially awkward and terrible at reading people but still so kind and caring in her own individual way.

The story, however, is not entirely focused on love in the sense of romance, it also focuses greatly on the idea of friendship, mostly between Sophia and her best friend, Elsie, but also between Joshua and a variety of his friends. This exploration of friendship is something that I really enjoyed in this novel.

Another unique aspect of the novel is the way that it alternates narrators, with Sophia narrating around three quarters of the novel and Joshua, the other main protagonist, only narrating every fourth chapter or so. This change in perspective helped to mix up the storyline; just when you started to tire of reading from Sophia’s point of view, the novel would suddenly switch to Joshua’s perspective.

Overall, The Secret Science of Magic is a unique story of young love and friendship that I would strongly recommend to anyone looking for a great YA read. 4 stars! 🙂

 

Books About Food

Recently I have been investing much more time into reading cook books and food blogs and am hoping to set aside a larger portion of my free time to making and baking food. One topic of specific interest to me is bread baking and much of my research has focused around this. All of this thinking about food has leaked into my reading life and led me to think about books that I have read that are based around the concept of cooking. Here is a short list of fictional books about food (many of which are from my childhood), along with some great cookbooks, that I have read.

  1. The School of Essential Ingredients; A Novel, By Erica Bauermeister. An avidly descriptive novel; I loved the beautiful way that the food making process was explained. While it was perhaps a little too over the top in some of its imagery, I still thoroughly enjoyed it.

  2. Bliss Bakery Series, By Kathryn Littlewood. Another gloriously descriptive novel, the Bliss Bakery series was an undeniable favourite of my childhood, most likely because it incorporated both magic and cooking.
  3. The Cupcake Diaries series, by Coco Simon. Another fabulous series from my childhood, I would recommend this to any young girl who loves to read about friendship and cupcakes… Or basically any young girl, full stop.
  4. The Chocolate Box Girls series,  By Cathy Cassidy. I love Cathy Cassidy’s books and this series is not exception. A fun series about sisterhood and chocolate.
  5. Brown Bread and Honey, by Pamela Allen. While this is in fact a picture book, it is still worthy of a mention on this list for its entertaining storyline, nice pictures and the fact that the whole story heavily revolves around food (and greed). I still enjoy reading this picture book today.
  6. Daisy All-Sorts, by Pamela Allen. Another great picture book by Pamela Allen. I wasn’t planning on including any picture books on this list, however once I start thinking of food, all of these great stories start popping into my mind.
  7. How to be a Domestic Goddess, by Nigella Lawson. A great cookbook about food and enjoying the process of home baking.
  8. Delicious; Love to Eat, by Valli Little. A nicely presented cookbook with plenty of delicious recipes from all over the world.

Credit Image          Credit Image        Credit Image

 

 

 

Half Way Through Review- Fangirl, Rainbow Rowell

I am currently reading Rainbow Rowell’s 2013 novel, Fangirl. While I still have little over half of the book left, I couldn’t resist reviewing what I have read so far!

After hearing raving reviews for this book for the last 4 years, I finally got my hands on a copy and couldn’t wait to give it a go. Surprisingly, this is the first Rainbow Rowell novel that I have read and I was intrigued to discover what her writing style would be like.

While at first, I found the addition of the excerpts from the (fictional) Simon Snow series a little confusing, slow and irrelevant, as the story progressed I learned to partially understand the parallel storyline of the books written by the (fictional) author Gemma T Leslie.

So far I am loving this unique young adult novel and can’t wait to see how the last 200 pages unfurl. Hopefully I will finish and review this book within the next few days to a week however nothing is set in stone! 🙂

Have you read this book? What did you think? Did the like the Simon Snow excerpts? Let me know in the comments section below!