Books You Need In Your Life, October – December 2018

pile of paperback books on white table next to red candle

Okay but seriously, how the heck are we in December 2018?! Just before we dive into my quarterly recommendations for the end of the year, here’s a heads up that you can find all of the books mentioned below on my Amazon Storefront* with Amazon Influencers, along with all my other favourites from this year… perfect for indulging in some new reads for the New Year with your Christmas money, if I do say so myself…

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury (Flamingo Modern Classics

“’You weren’t there, you didn’t see’, he said. ‘There must be something in books, things we can’t imagine, to make a woman stay in a burning house; there must be something there. You don’t stay for nothing”.

Within pages of this book, I knew it was one that would make a lasting impact on me. Set in a time where reading books is considered a sin, protagonist Montag is faced with difficult questions about the nature of humanity. People have reached a point where they need all their information and entertainment to be delivered in quick, successive bursts, using technology, rather than come from paper and ink. Montag, although working as a firefighter whose very purpose is to burn and demolish the remaining books forever, has to endure and conceal a devious streak to indulge in reading himself, and his consequent actions mean he’s faced with decisions he never could have imagined he would be. View Post

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A Shimmer Of Heat, and a chat with Christy Shields [AD]

selfie of pippa wearing red jumper, holding copy of 'a shimmer of heat' book by christy shields and smiling

I firmly believe there’s no better time to get stuck into a new series than when the cold weather’s rapidly approaching and Christmas is well on its way. I’m currently reading the romantic thriller, A Shimmer Of Heat, first book of the Resolution Security series*, by emerging author Christy Shields. I’m delighted to share with you today a chat with Christy, plus a cheeky giveaway where you can win signed copies of the books AND a £10 Amazon voucher for yourself. Discover her writing process, tips for creating an impactful read with strong characters, and the challenges of writing raunchy scenes in coffee shops… View Post

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Dear Evan Hansen Novel by Val Emmich – Book Review

flatlay of dear evan hansen book, leaflet and iphone playing cast recording

“Panic has a salty taste. It’s like I’m standing in a small glass tank and the tank is filling up with water… There’s no way out of the tank. All I can do is wait as the water surrounds me. I stretch my neck up for that last bit of air. I’m gasping. And then, when I can barely catch my breath, it stops. The water recedes, always. I never end up drowning, but it doesn’t matter. The feeling of almost drowning is even worse than actually drowning. Actual drowning is peace. Almost drowning is pure pain.”

Let me preface this review by saying that despite Dear Evan Hansen being at the top of my must-see musical list, I’ve never actually known the full synopsis, or fully worked out the storyline from listening to the soundtrack. SO, when the angels at Penguin Children’s sent out a copy of their new novel adaptation by Val Emmich*, with Steven Levenson, Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, it’s safe to say it was the best bit of book mail I’ve EVER had. You know the excitement is real when you give yourself a paper-cut trying to get it out of the envelope and absorb those all important words into your brain as speedily as possible. View Post

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Books You Need In Your Life, July- September 2018

coloured book spines arranged next to plant pot

Don’t Stop Thinking About Tomorrow by Siobhan Curham (Walker YA)

“They say that sarcasm is the lowest form of humour but for me, sarcasm is a sanity-saver. If I wasn’t able to make fun of my situation I think my heart would crack in two from the tragedy of it all”.

If you managed to read the title of this book without automatically singing along to the tune of it in your head, I applaud you.

Siobhan Curham’s latest novel follows the narrative of two young people in remarkably different circumstances, and the story of how their hidden similarities come to reveal themselves. It’s a gorgeous story of friendship, but from each viewpoint, some hefty real-world issues are tackled head on. First we have Stevie, quietly living in poverty and singlehandedly caring for her mum, who’s suffering from debilitating depression and facing unjust cuts to her disability benefits. Then we have refugee Hafiz, still emotionally recovering from fleeing the war in Syria and trying to find his feet in the UK, all the while not knowing whether his family and friends are even still alive. View Post

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