March/April Summary and Plans for May

I got my reading mojo back recently and have read a lot in the last few weeks. This is mainly because we still haven’t sold our house, so we’re in a boring limbo which involves lots of cleaning and sitting around whilst people wander around our house. Hopefully someone will buy it soon so that we can move onto the next stage of our lives.

Books of the Month

There were two stand-out books this month:

I highly recommend reading both of them!

Books reviewed in March/April

It’s All In Your Head by Suzanne O’Sullivan 

A Whole Life by Robert Seethaler  

The Outrun by Amy Liptrot 

Everyone Brave is Forgiven by Chris Cleave  

Unravelling Oliver by Liz Nugent 

The Gigantic Beard That Was Evil by Stephen Collins 

Everything is Teeth by Evie Wyld, Illustrated by Joe Sumner 

The Villa Rouge by Maggie Ross 

Meatspace by Nikesh Shukla 

Shtum by Jem Lester 

His Whole Life by Elizabeth Hay 

Stork Mountain by Mirislav Penkov 

Black Milk by Elif Shafak 

The Best Thing That Can Happen to a Croissant by Pablo Tusset 

When the Floods Came by Clare Morrall 

Plans For May

I’m hoping that I’ll continue to read regularly and plan to read/review most of the following books soon:

Walkabout by James Vance Marshall

Long Night of White Chickens by Francisco Goldman

The Kitchen God’s Wife by Amy Tan

The War Of The Worlds by HG Wells

Christ’s Entry into Brussels by Dimitri Verhulst

Marching Powder by Rusty Young

The House at the Edge of Night by Catherine Banner

I’ll also pick up a few random books from my shelves. Hopefully I’ll discover a gem or two. Have a wonderful May!



Recent Summary and Plans for March

I’ve had a stressful few months, but things are beginning to fall into place and I’m starting to read again. We’ve found a beautiful old house in Worcestershire and now have to wait patiently until we find a buyer for our current property – when I’m sure everything will become manic again! 

I’ve not had enough reviews to do a monthly summary for a while, so this collection goes back a few months. Hopefully it will remind you how amazing Home is Burning by Dan Marshall is. It hasn’t received the attention it deserves, but if you like powerful, emotional books that aren’t afraid to be brutally honest then you need to get hold of a copy!

Home is Burning 

Home is Burning by Dan Marshall 

The Good Earth by Pearl Buck 

Death and Mr Pickwick by Stephen Jarvis 

Counting Sheep by Philip Walling 

News From Nowhere by William Morris 

Neurotribes by Steve Silberman 

The Getting of Wisdom by Henry (Ethel) Handel Richardson 

The Little White Horse by Elizabeth Goudge 

The Mountain Shadow by Gregory David Roberts stars21

Plans for March

I’m not going to make ambitious plans, but I hope to catch up with my reviewing by giving brief thoughts on these books:

Everything is Teeth by Evie Wyld

Meatspace by Nikesh Shukla

Black Milk by Elif Shafak

When the Floods Came by Clare Morrall

I then hope to read most of these, some of which I’ve already started: 

The Forgetting Time by Sharon Guskin

Stork Mountain by Miroslav Penkov

War of the Worlds by HG Wells (because the 150th anniversary of his birth is coming up and I really should read it before I leave Surrey)

The Best Thing That Can Happen To A Croissant by Pablo Tusset

I hope that you’ve had a lovely February!

Other Uncategorized

September/October Summary and Plans for November

The summer was so busy that I didn’t read much, but things have been a lot quieter since my boys returned to school. This means I’m back to my usual level of reading and am getting through the stacks again. I’ve read a nice selection of books, but my favourite read, by a long margin, was A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara. I think it will be difficult to find a better book this year. In fact I don’t think I’ve read another book with such an intensity of emotion. I highly recommend you give it a try!

Book of the Month:

A Little Life

Books Reviewed in September/October:

A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara 

The Mountain and the Valley by Ernest Buckler 

The Utopia Experiment by Dylan Evans 

Educating Ruby by Guy Claxton and Bill Lucas 

Every Boy Should Have a Man by Preston L Allen 

The Underground Girls of Kabul by Jenny Nordberg 

I Let You Go by Clare Mackintosh 

Soil by Jamie Kornegay 

Where My Heart Used to Beat by Sebastian Faulks 

The First Bad Man by Miranda July 

Kauthar by Meike Ziervogel 

The Seed Collectors by Scarlett Thomas 

Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff 

Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand 

Plans for November

I’ve recently finished the following books and hope to review them soon:

News from Nowhere by William Morris

The Good Earth by Pearl Buck

Everything is Teeth by Evie Wyld

Meatspace by Nikesh Shukla

The Mountain Shadow by Gregory David Roberts

I then plan to read most of these:

Death and Mr Pickwick by Stephen Jarvis

The Little White Horse by Elizabeth Goudge

Black Milk by Elif Shafak

The Fishermen by Chigozie Obioma

The Postman by David Brin

I hope you have a wonderful November!


July/August Summary and Plans for September

I’ve had a very busy summer, spending time with friends and family. I’ve managed to keep up the reading, but haven’t been able to keep this blog up to date. Hopefully I’ll be able to do that now things are getting back to normal.

Over the summer I read two outstanding books: Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts and A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara. Both go on to my list of all-time favourites and I hope that you love them as much as I did.

Books of the Summer:

Shantaram A Little Life

Books Reviewed in July/August:

Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts 

All Involved by Ryan Gattis 

The Bridge Over the Drina by Ivo Andric 

Blackass by A Igoni Barrett 

Familiar Wars by Julietta Harvey 

Boy in the Tower by Polly Ho-Yen 

The Loney Andrew Michael Hurley 

Under the Skin by Michel Faber 

Plans for September

I’m a bit behind with reviews. I hope to catch up in the next few weeks, but here are a few words to give you an idea of my thoughts on the books I’ve finished recently:

I Let You Go by Clare Mackintosh Gripping, but flawed

Swallow This by Joanna Blythman Scary!

A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara A masterpiece

Educating Ruby by Guy Claxton and Bill Lucas Insightful

Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand Lacking emotion

Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson Too long

The Seed Collectors by Scarlett Thomas Too fragmentented

Cafe Europa by Slavenka Drakulic Fascinating, but dated

I haven’t thought about what I’m going to read next as I’m too busy unpacking! I need to have a good look at all the books I have here and try to prioritise them. I’ll update my sidebar as I work through the outstanding reviews.

I hope you all had a great summer and I look forward to catching up with you soon.


June Summary and Plans for July

June hasn’t been a very good month for me. I wanted to tell you that Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts is one of the best books I’ve ever read and that Familiar Wars by Julietta Harvey is an amazing book that reminds me A Fine Balance. Instead I’ve been in and out of hospital; both for myself and members of my family.

It started early in the month when my knee swelled up and I became unable to walk. They successfully drained some strange orange gunk from it (which enabled me to walk again) but still haven’t worked out what is wrong with it. Then my husband went in for surgery on his shoulder; and finally my youngest son was admitted to hospital for suspected epilepsy. Things seem to be on the mend for us all, but we still have far too many hospital appointments scheduled for the next few weeks.

Anyway, enough of my troubles…let’s get back to the books!

Book of the Month:

An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth 

Books Reviewed in June:

An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth by Chris Hadfield 

Professor Andersen’s Night by Dag Solstad 

The Hunting Gun by Yasushi Inoue 

Quicksand by Steve Toltz 

Mary Poppins by PL Travers 

Plans for July

Hopefully I’ll have time to write a few reviews soon. I haven’t had any thoughts about what I might read next – I’m afraid it will have to be a surprise for you! 

Let’s hope July is a much better month!



May Summary and Plans for June

Book of the Month: Golden Boy by Abigail Tarttelin

Golden Boy

This book about the difficulties of facing puberty as an intersex teenager was eye-opening and emotional. Recommended to anyone looking for a gripping page-turner. 

Books Reviewed in May:

Golden Boy by Abigail Tarttelin 

Colorless Tsukuru and His Years of Pilgrimage by Haruki Murakami 

Brilliance by Anthony McCarten 

Out in the Open by Jesús Carrasco 

School Blues by Daniel Pennac 

Euphoria by Lily King 

In the Beginning Was the Sea by Tomás González 

Demons by Wayne Macauley 

The Wolf Border by Sarah Hall 

Plans for June

I’m continuing to read Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts. It is outstanding and I’m sure it will become one of my all-time favourites. 

I have recently finished Quicksand by Steve ToltzAn Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth by Chris Hadfield and  Mary Poppins by PL Travers and hope to review them soon. 

I also plan to try most of these books in the near future:

The Hunting Gun by Yasushi Inou

In the Unlikely Event by Judy Blume

Under The Skin by Michel Faber

Professor Andersen’s Night by Dag Solstad

This House is Not for Sale by EC Osondu

I hope that you have a wonderful June!