Archive | June, 2016

Reading Challenge: Book 11, 12, 13 AND 14 complete

24 Jun

I’ve been fortunate enough to spend the last week in Cyprus and so, in honour of the reading challenge, I set myself a challenge to read as many books on the list as possible.

It also seemed like a good opportunity to get through some of the harder books.

I was already part-way through book 11 before I left.

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I picked up Second Term by Simon Walters. To be honest, I only picked it up because it helped me tick the ‘protagonist who has your occupation’ box (I’d googled ‘books about press officers’ and figured parliamentary press secretary was the closest I’d get). I have to say though, I really enjoyed it.


The inside sleeve promises a story of spin, sabotage and seduction. On all three of those counts, it certainly doesn’t disappoint.

Although it helped me tick a box, Charlie Redpath is about as far from my job as I could imagine. And I’m very thankful for that.

You’ll find the book on Amazon (or in the hotel book swap box where I left it in Cyprus). If you like political stories, this one will be right up your alley.

Right, on to book 12 then…

Having really enjoyed The Fault in Our Stars, I was really looking forward to reading An abundance of Katherines – especially as it helped me tick the ‘road trip’ box.

I wasn’t disappointed. It wasn’t at all what I expected, it was much geekier for a start. But I loved that about it. It reminded me of a teenage ‘Rosie Project’, another book I really loved reading. The footnotes even taught me something (I especially liked learning a new word – abligurition – which applies to me quite often but which I won’t spoil by telling you the meaning of). I have to confess though, I didn’t read the appendix, maths is not only NOT my strong point but I have absolutely no interest in it whatsoever!

I loved this book so much it only took me a day and a half to read (helped by being on holiday obviously). I’d strongly recommend it, especially if, like me, you loved ‘The Rosie Project’.

For book 13, it was time to be brave.


I found Night Film through a suggestion from Pop Sugar itself. It had suggested this as a book you could read to tick the ‘over 600 pages’ box.

It’s not actually over 600 pages, well the book itself is – it’s 602 to be exact – but the story finishes at 582. Since it’s highly unlikely I’m going to find another 600 worder though, I’m taking it!

I purposefully chose to take Night Film by Marisha Pessl on holiday with me because, just by looking at the cover, I knew it would scare me. I know, you shouldn’t just a book by its cover, right? No, in this case I was definitely right.

I really enjoyed the beginning of this book, right up until around the middle where it starts going really weird and then 3/4 of the way through I got scared, like really scared. I did however spend a full day gripped by it and finished it in less than 36 hours. Mainly to get it out of my head before I got home if I’m honest. If I was Joey from Friends, this book would definitely have gone in the fridge!

If you’ve come across this post by googling, like I did, ‘books that are over 600 pages’ and want to read this book solely to tick that box, don’t (unless you want to cheat). If you want to read this because you like scary books, then go right ahead. 

PS. Don’t hold it against me if you don’t find this book scary, I’m a MASSIVE scaredycat!

Surprisingly, I was even able to finish book 14 on my last day. Again, I chose this one because I figured it would scare me and that being surrounded by people in the sunshine was therefore s better place to read it.

Having really enjoyed Gone Girl, I thought I’d risk my scaredycat tendencies with Girl on the Train and tick the ‘murder mystery’ box. 

I’m really glad I did.

I actually guessed the murderer halfway through which I never do. It didn’t spoil it for me though, I was truly gripped by this story.

I was disappointed with the female characters at first,as they came across as a bit weak and pathetic, but I liked them in the end.

I hadn’t realised I could have also ticked the ‘book that is becoming a movie this year’ box with this one but I watched the film trailer as soon as I got home and can’t wait to see it now.

I can’t actually believe that I’m on to book 15! In June!!


Reading Challenge: Book 10 complete

11 Jun

Book 10 came as a massive surprise to me. I have to be honest, I didn’t expect a lot from this one; I really like Jenny Eclair as a comedian but you’re never really sure what their novels might be like.

If the rest of her books are like this one though, I’m buying them all!

Moving pulls you in from the very beginning. I loved the way it takes you through each room in the house chapter by chapter, slowly unraveling the secrets each one holds, before moving on to the individual characters.

It’s incredibly easy to read, helped by short chapters, and is pretty difficult to put down, which may help to explain how I finished it in less than a week.

I honestly feel like I know each character personally and I think I may be a bit lost now I’ve finished it. 

If you see this book in your local shop or library, pick it up. I don’t think you’ll regret it.

I know I’ve already ticked the ‘book written by a comedian’ box but, as Jenny is also a celebrity, I’m ticking that box instead.

Reading Challenge: Book 9 complete

7 Jun

After a few months of heavy reading, I thought I’d go a bit lighter this month.

And with the weather finally warming up, which better box to tick than ‘a book which takes place in the summer’, courtesy of Candace Bushnell’s Summer in the City?!


Obviously you don’t expect literary genius when you open this book, but Candace knows how to tell a story and for fans of Sex and the City, like me, it’s great to read how Carrie meets the rest of the gang.