RECENTLY READ

4 Aug 2018



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I'm embarrassed that I've only managed to read less than a handful so far this year and it's already August. Because of this and with finally some free time to catch up on the fab books I've missed this year, I've set myself the goal of reading a book a week until the end of summer. 
While to some serious readers this is hardly anything, I can be quite a slow reader and that's fine with me. If I manage to complete my own little challenge I'll be proud of myself. Having said that, here's what I've read so far this summer. 

ELEANOR OLIPHANT IS COMPLETELY FINE // GAIL HONEYMAN

★★★★★

I'd heard my friend had decided to pick this one up to read and the premise was something that sounded like one I would enjoy. So, before heading to London, I picked this up and started to read this on the train. It's centred around called, surprisingly, Eleanor Oliphant and it gives a glimpse of her childhood which was an interesting one. It shows us how it's affected her in her adult years.  While I'd say it's definitely a slow burner, having nothing else to do on that train helped me power through. I actually for once  enjoyed the slow build up. The slower pace made it feel like more of a  realistic life with chapters that focussed on more normal day to day tasks which still revealed a lot about the character. It really allowed to build depth to the characters and helped me to connect with the story. 
I have been struggling to find books that bridge the gap between young adult books that I love but have started to outgrow and adult fiction that just don't capture my attention that YA does. This was the perfect hybrid and I have this to thank for getting me out of my 6-month reading slump. It was a book I highly enjoyed and would recommend to others. I could tell it's not everyone's cup of tea due to the slower pace but it's not incredibly long and I think it's worth it. That's why I'd give this a 5 stars. 


UNCONVENTIONAL // MAGGIE HARCOURT

★☆☆☆☆

I don't recall the last time I've given a book one star. After getting almost all the way to the end of this book I ended up giving up. I think the reason I didn't like this book was maybe more to do with me than the actual book. I think I'm starting to realise I'm outgrowing some branches of YA. Having said that, even a few years ago, I think I would have enjoyed it more than now but I still don't think it would be one I'd be quick to recommend to others. 
One of the appraisals on the front cover likened Harcourt's writing style to Rainbow Rowell and I totally agree with that. It's a very easy-going like premise with a simple tone throughout. It reminded me a lot of Rowell's short "Kindred Spirits". With that, I think this book would have made a great short story; I don't feel it needed the 314 pages it included. I think, if it was shorter, I may have enjoyed it more but, in this instance, I felt it dragged out the story unnecessarily. What I will give it is that, in some places, it did make me chuckle but overall I wasn't a fan. The relationship introduced in this book didn't feel genuine and had a very cliche feel to it that made it quite unbelievable and rushed. With a 3.6 average on Goodreads, other's obviously do like this book and so maybe don't just take my opinion on it. But, sadly, this one wasn't for me. 

WE ALL LOOKED UP // TOMMY WALLACH

★★☆☆☆


I'd heard a lot of this in the blogging community so thought it was worth a go. It's been sat on my shelf for a while after getting it for my 19th birthday (I'm now 20 and a half...). It wasn't exactly as I expected. I was thinking it would be more Station Eleven meets Breakfast Club. And, I guess, it was a little like that but it still wasn't exactly what I expected or wanted from the book. The book centres around four high-school teenagers in America and it was set around the days leading up to the crash of a meteor and the potential end of the earth. I'm a sucker for dual or, in this case, quadruple perspectives but here I don't think it really added anything really necessary. This was another slow one going in to it but, unlike Eleanor Oliphant, it wasn't one that really allowed me to connect with the characters and the end left me disappointed as I felt nothing really came of the book. 
In some places I also found the writing a little pretentious; using big words where bigs words weren't needed. Having said this, I still made it to the end which is something. I have another book by Tommy Wallach called "Thanks For The Trouble" which I have given a go previously but, even after the slight disappointment of this book of his, I think I will still try and give it another crack this summer.

Do you have any book recommendations I should give ago this summer?
Hope you're doing great, 
Sarah x


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