Oh dear, May went by so fast! I’ve been on study leave for most of this month, so the time has really flown by and now we’re almost halfway through 2017! I did manage to read a fair bit this month, even with my exams, so I do have a fair bit to wrap up in this post.
Book of the Month
This month’s book of the month has to be The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood. The general consensus of this book, which I agree with, is that this is not a book that is a particularly enjoyable read. For those of you who do not know, this book is set in a dystopian future where, due to some sort of nuclear fallout, birth rates begin to fall, and many children die soon after birth. As a result of this, an extremist group take over this area (which I am pretty sure is in America), and the women are stripped of all freedom and power. The main character, Offred, is a Handmaid, and her sole purpose is now to be assigned to a Commander in order to bear children. This was a really harrowing read, and very well written, and I think it is important that everybody reads it. The TV show also began airing in the UK on Channel 4 on Sunday, so I am looking forward to that!
Not too long ago I was sorting through my laptop and I found this . . . blog post, I guess? I wrote this comparison of Everything, Everything and Under Rose-Tainted Skies before I started my blog, after I read URTS in the summer. I just thought that there was a very important message that could be drawn from it, and it compelled me to write this post. I hope that many of you will agree with what I have to say.
I haven’t done a tag in absolutely ages, so I thought now would be a great time to do a tag that I thought looked like lots of fun – the You’re Not Good Enough Tag. How this works, is you write down 30 names of fictional characters, and pick two at random to answer each of the following questions!
Thank you to Emily from A Cup Of Wittea for tagging me in this, I’ve been super excited to do it myself! Emily’s post is here if you want to check it out!
Title: Truth or Dare
Author: Non Pratt
Published by: Walker Books
Publication date: 1st June 2017
Pages: 304, paperback
Genre: young adult, contemporary
A powerful and moving novel about bravery from the Guardian’s “writer to watch” Non Pratt, perfect for fans of Rainbow Rowell, John Green and Holly Bourne. How far is too far when it comes to the people you love? Claire Casey hates being the centre of attention. But if it means getting Sef Malik to notice her, it’s a risk she’s happy to take. Sef is prepared to do anything to help his recently disabled brother. But this means putting Claire’s love – and life – on the line. Because when you’re willing to risk everything, what is there left to lose?
I read this book over the Easter holidays, and it was a book I’d been looking forward to reading ever since I first heard about it. So, the first chance I got, I stole my sister’s ARC off her bookshelf and got stuck in.
Now, as much as I adore YA, it’s unusual for me to find a contemporary YA that I absolutely love – it’s normally the fantasy YA that gets me hooked. But I could not put this book down. Seriously. I took myself to the library, ready to get lots of studying done without an internet connection to distract me, and every 10 minutes I was picking this book up to read just another chapter. Right. We all know how that goes. The point is, this book was utterly addictive, and I enjoyed it immensely.
Title: Show Stopper
Author: Hayley Barker
Published by: Scholastic
Publication date: 1st June 2017
Pages: 400, paperback
Genre: young adult, dystopian
Set in a near-future England where the poorest people in the land are forced to sell their children to a travelling circus – to perform at the mercy of hungry lions, sabotaged high wires and a demonic ringmaster. The ruling class visit the circus as an escape from their structured, high-achieving lives – pure entertainment with a bloodthirsty edge. Ben, the teenage son of a draconian government minister, visits the circus for the first time and falls instantly in love with Hoshiko, a young performer. They come from harshly different worlds – but must join together to escape the circus and put an end to its brutal sport.
I have been excited to talk about this book for months! I read Show Stopper book back in February (as part of my WiFi-less Readathon) after receiving an ARC from Scholastic. There are so many brilliant things to say about this book, and I can’t wait to share them all. I am also lucky enough to now own a finished copy of this book as well as an ARC, so I am now holding a giveaway for the ARC on Twitter (there’s more information on that at the bottom of this post)!
Today on my blog I am taking part in the Noah Can’t Even blog tour! As some of you may know, I absolutely loved this book, and found it absolutely hilarious (you can read my review of it here), so I am really thrilled to be taking part in the tour! The author, Simon James Green, will be answering some questions I had about himself and the book, so welcome to my blog Simon! (also, a big thank you to Olivia Horrox and Scholastic for arranging this interview!)
As it is mental health awareness week, I thought I’d talk about a book I read very recently which I found truly excellent. Open: A Toolkit for How Magic and Messed Up Life Can Be by Gemma Cairney is a non-fiction book that covers a huge variety of things – from heartbreak to anxiety, exercise to sex to careers, this book has pretty much anything and everything you could need advice on. In this blog post I want to talk you through the various wonderful things about this book – particularly the parts of the book which discuss mental health.