Posted in Reading

Top Ten Tuesday: Freebie (Books I can’t wait to read)

April 17

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I discovered this fun blog via Death By Tsundoku Top Ten Tuesday is a meme originated by The Broke and the Bookish now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week the theme is:

This week the theme is: Freebie (Books I can’t wait to read)

Please note I am having a ridiculously busy year and am now running really late on this meme but as I love it I want to catch up so you are all about to be spammed with multiple posts as I finish my back log 😉

SO MANY BOOKS I CAN’T WAIT TO READ!!!!! Narrowing it down it going to be the hard part for this one!

  1.  The Hate U Give

    The Hate U Give

    by:

    Angie Thomas (Goodreads Author)

    “What’s the point of having a voice if you’re gonna be silent in those moments you shouldn’t be?”

    Sixteen-year-old Starr lives in two worlds: the poor neighbourhood where she was born and raised and her posh high school in the suburbs. The uneasy balance between them is shattered when Starr is the only witness to the fatal shooting of her unarmed best friend, Khalil, by a police officer. Now what Starr says could destroy her community. It could also get her killed.

  2. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

    One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest


    Like George Orwell and Philip Wylie, Ken Kesey is concerned with man’s battle to be himself in a world of increasing controls, the battle of joy and freedom against a society which fosters guilt and shame. His first novel, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, tells the story of a struggle between a man and a woman for the spirits and hearts of a group of people who have been defeated by the world.
    The setting for these defeated lives is a mental institution. The teller of the story, a half-Indian and a long-time inmate, has made the most complete retreat from life of all of them; he will not talk, and he has fooled the staff into thinking he is deaf and dumb. But through his self-imposed protective fog he is an acute observer. His vision of the life around him seems to have a truth which is beyond the definitions of sanity or insanity. To him the world is run by an all-powerful “Combine.” The hear of the war, the “Big Nurse,” is the chief instrument of evil. She wields her insidious power over the men to destroy their wills and freeze them into mindless obedience.
    Into this gray world comes McMurphy, a brawling, gambling man, full of spirit and a glorious lust for life. He is horrified by the docility with which the other men accept the rule of the Big Nurse and decides to fight her on her own terms. The battle begins, for him, as a lark – a way of winning the bets he has made with the men. And then, as he becomes more aware of the terrible dangers in it, and more committed to the others who have come to count on him for their own survival, his decision to go on is a heroic act of sacrifice and compassion.

3.

Lovecraft Country

Lovecraft Country

by

Matt Ruff (Goodreads Author)

The critically acclaimed cult novelist makes visceral the terrors of life in Jim Crow America and its lingering effects in this brilliant and wondrous work of the imagination that melds historical fiction, pulp noir, and Lovecraftian horror and fantasy

Chicago, 1954. When his father Montrose goes missing, twenty-two year old Army veteran Atticus Turner embarks on a road trip to New England to find him, accompanied by his Uncle George—publisher of The Safe Negro Travel Guide—and his childhood friend Letitia. On their journey to the manor of Mr. Braithwhite—heir to the estate that owned Atticus’s great grandmother—they encounter both mundane terrors of white America and malevolent spirits that seem straight out of the weird tales George devours.

At the manor, Atticus discovers his father in chains, held prisoner by a secret cabal named the Order of the Ancient Dawn—led by Samuel Braithwhite and his son Caleb—which has gathered to orchestrate a ritual that shockingly centers on Atticus. And his one hope of salvation may be the seed of his—and the whole Turner clan’s—destruction.

A chimerical blend of magic, power, hope, and freedom that stretches across time, touching diverse members of one black family, Lovecraft Country is a devastating kaleidoscopic portrait of racism—the terrifying specter that continues to haunt us today.

 

4.

The Kingmaker's Daughter (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels, #4)

The Kingmaker’s Daughter (The Plantagenet and Tudor Novels #4)

by

Philippa Gregory(Goodreads Author),

Is there anyone she can trust?
The Kingmaker’s Daughter is the gripping story of the daughters of the man known as the “Kingmaker,” Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick: the most powerful magnate in fifteenth-century England. Without a son and heir, he uses his daughters, Anne and Isabel as pawns in his political games, and they grow up to be influential players in their own right. In this novel, her first sister story since The Other Boleyn Girl, Philippa Gregory explores the lives of two fascinating young women.

At the court of Edward IV and his beautiful queen, Elizabeth Woodville, Anne grows from a delightful child to become ever more fearful and desperate when her father makes war on his former friends. Married at age fourteen, she is soon left widowed and fatherless, her mother in sanctuary and her sister married to the enemy. Anne manages her own escape by marrying Richard, Duke of Gloucester, but her choice will set her on a collision course with the overwhelming power of the royal family and will cost the lives of those she loves most in the world, including her precious only son, Prince Edward. Ultimately, the kingmaker’s daughter will achieve her father’s greatest ambition.

5.

The Golden Compass (His Dark Materials, #1)

The Golden Compass (His Dark Materials #1)

Some books improve with age–the age of the reader, that is. Such is certainly the case with Philip Pullman’s heroic, at times heart-wrenching novel, The Golden Compass, a story ostensibly for children but one perhaps even better appreciated by adults. The protagonist of this complex fantasy is young Lyra Belacqua, a precocious orphan growing up within the precincts of Oxford University. But it quickly becomes clear that Lyra’s Oxford is not precisely like our own–nor is her world. For one thing, people there each have a personal dæmon, the manifestation of their soul in animal form. For another, hers is a universe in which science, theology, and magic are closely allied:As for what experimental theology was, Lyra had no more idea than the urchins. She had formed the notion that it was concerned with magic, with the movements of the stars and planets, with tiny particles of matter, but that was guesswork, really. Probably the stars had dæmons just as humans did, and experimental theology involved talking to them.

Not that Lyra spends much time worrying about it; what she likes best is “clambering over the College roofs with Roger the kitchen boy who was her particular friend, to spit plum stones on the heads of passing Scholars or to hoot like owls outside a window where a tutorial was going on, or racing through the narrow streets, or stealing apples from the market, or waging war.” But Lyra’s carefree existence changes forever when she and her dæmon, Pantalaimon, first prevent an assassination attempt against her uncle, the powerful Lord Asriel, and then overhear a secret discussion about a mysterious entity known as Dust. Soon she and Pan are swept up in a dangerous game involving disappearing children, a beautiful woman with a golden monkey dæmon, a trip to the far north, and a set of allies ranging from “gyptians” to witches to an armor-clad polar bear.

In The Golden Compass, Philip Pullman has written a masterpiece that transcends genre. It is a children’s book that will appeal to adults, a fantasy novel that will charm even the most hardened realist. Best of all, the author doesn’t speak down to his audience, nor does he pull his punches; there is genuine terror in this book, and heartbreak, betrayal, and loss. There is also love, loyalty, and an abiding morality that infuses the story but never overwhelms it. This is one of those rare novels that one wishes would never end. Fortunately, its sequel, The Subtle Knife, will help put off that inevitability for a while longer. –Alix Wilber

6.

The Thirteenth Tale

The Thirteenth Tale

Angelfield House stands abandoned and forgotten. It was once the imposing home of the March family–fascinating, manipulative Isabelle, Charlie her brutal and dangerous brother, and the wild, untamed twins, Emmeline and Adeline. But Angelfield House conceals a chilling secret whose impact still resonates…

Now Margaret Lea is investigating Angelfield’s past–and the mystery of the March family starts to unravel. What has Angelfield been hiding? What is its connection with the enigmatic author Vida Winter? And what is it in Margaret’s own troubled past that causes her to fall so powerfully under Angelfilds spell?

7.

Sleeping Beauties

Sleeping Beauties

by

Stephen King (Goodreads Author),
Owen King (Goodreads Author)

In a future so real and near it might be now, something happens when women go to sleep; they become shrouded in a cocoon-like gauze.

If they are awakened, and the gauze wrapping their bodies is disturbed or violated, the women become feral and spectacularly violent; and while they sleep they go to another place.

The men of our world are abandoned, left to their increasingly primal devices. One woman, however, the mysterious Evie, is immune to the blessing or curse of the sleeping disease.

Is Evie a medical anomaly to be studied, or is she a demon who must be slain?

8.

The Lovely Bones

 The Lovely Bones

Once in a generation a novel comes along that taps a vein of universal human experience, resonating with readers of all ages. THE LOVELY BONES is such a book — a #1 bestseller celebrated at once for its artistry, for its luminous clarity of emotion, and for its astonishing power to lay claim to the hearts of millions of readers around the world.

“My name was Salmon, like the fish; first name, Susie. I was fourteen when I was murdered on December 6, 1973.”So begins the story of Susie Salmon, who is adjusting to her new home in heaven, a place that is not at all what she expected, even as she is watching life on earth continue without her — her friends trading rumors about her disappearance, her killer trying to cover his tracks, her grief-stricken family unraveling. Out of unspeakable tragedy and loss, THE LOVELY BONES succeeds, miraculously, in building a tale filled with hope, humor, suspense, even joy.
The major motion picture version of THE LOVELY BONES, directed by Peter Jackson and starring Rachel Weisz, Susan Sarandon, Mark Wahlberg, Stanley Tucci, and Saoirse Ronan is scheduled for release on December 11, 2009.

9.

Bridget Jones's Diary (Bridget Jones, #1)

Bridget Jones’s Diary (Bridget Jones #1)

by

Helen Fielding (Goodreads Author)

Meet Bridget Jones—a 30-something Singleton who is certain she would have all the answers if she could:

a. lose 7 pounds
b. stop smoking
c. develop Inner Poise


“123 lbs. (how is it possible to put on 4 pounds in the middle of the night? Could flesh have somehow solidified becoming denser and heavier? Repulsive, horrifying notion), alcohol units 4 (excellent), cigarettes 21 (poor but will give up totally tomorrow), number of correct lottery numbers 2 (better, but nevertheless useless)…”

Bridget Jones’ Diary is the devastatingly self-aware, laugh-out-loud daily chronicle of Bridget’s permanent, doomed quest for self-improvement — a year in which she resolves to: reduce the circumference of each thigh by 1.5 inches, visit the gym three times a week not just to buy a sandwich, form a functional relationship with a responsible adult, and learn to program the VCR.

Over the course of the year, Bridget loses a total of 72 pounds but gains a total of 74. She remains, however, optimistic. Through it all, Bridget will have you helpless with laughter, and — like millions of readers the world round — you’ll find yourself shouting, “Bridget Jones is me!”

10. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33151805-into-the-water

Into the Water

 Into the Water

by

Paula Hawkins(Goodreads Author)
In the last days before her death, Nel called her sister. Jules didn’t pick up the phone, ignoring her plea for help. Now Nel is dead. They say she jumped. And Jules has been dragged back to the one place she hoped she had escaped for good, to care for the teenage girl her sister left behind. But Jules is afraid. So afraid. Of her long-buried memories, of the old Mill House, of knowing that Nel would never have jumped. And most of all she’s afraid of the water, and the place they call the Drowning Pool . . .
I have delibieratly not given explanations this time and am letting the choices speak for themselves.
All the above is via Goodreads
Ka Kete Ano xx

 

 

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Posted in Reading

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Loved, but Will Never Re-read

April 10

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I discovered this fun blog via Death By Tsundoku Top Ten Tuesday is a meme originated by The Broke and the Bookish now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week the theme is:

This week the theme is: Books I Loved, but Will Never Re-read

Please note I am having a ridiculously busy year and am now running really late on this meme but as I love it I want to catch up so you are all about to be spammed with multiple posts as I finish my back log 😉

This is kind of an easy one.  My ‘too read’ list is so long that there are ton’s of fabulous books that I have read but will never re-read as I have other things that would take precedent.

1:  This is How It Always Is by Laurie Frankel                               https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29740478-this-is-how-it-always-is

This is How It Always Is

Its about raising a rainbow child and I totally enjoyed it.  Couldn’t put it down even 🙂 but its a book that once read gives no reason to pick it up again so I don’t think this will be a re-read.

2:  Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell                                               https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18405.Gone_with_the_Wind

Gone with the Wind

I truly loved this book way more than the movie, which is saying something as I have seen the movie hundreds of times!  Its my go to movie for in the heart of winter when its too miserable to leave the house. Why do I think I will never read it again then you ask.  Because its a really big book! Hard to hold up in bed or in the bath and if you accidentally nod off (who doesn’t when its late and your knackered) then you run the risk of concussion when it smacks you in the face.

3:  Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen                                                        https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1885.Pride_and_Prejudice

Pride and Prejudice

Such a beautiful book. Funny, heart wrenching, romantic, old worlde.  Whats not to love about a Jane Austen book.  Why would I not read it again?  I found it hard going at times because you actually have to be awake and paying attention to read it.  Well worth the effort but, for me, not for a second read.

4:  The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien                                                   https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/5907.The_Hobbit

The Hobbit

I so loved this book.  I read it over summer break just after I turned 12.  It was probably my transition book, you know, the first one that you ever read that is loved by adults and can’t be classed only as a children’s book.  Why would I not read it again?  For the same reasons as #3.  My uncle who lent me the book when I was 12 would be horrified.  He makes a point of reading all the Lord of the Rings books at least every second year.

5:  The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood                                         https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/38447.The_Handmaid_s_Tale

The Handmaid's Tale

Wow.  What a fabulous, yet scary, book.  Scary because you can almost see this happening now.  Fertility rates are down in all western countries and there is a rise to power by mycologists in some countries. You can almost believe that something like this could happen in a small country.  Why would I not read it again?  Although beautifully written the pace is very slow and I struggled to finish more than 10 pages at a time through some parts.

6:  Four Fires by Bryce Courtney                                                                                https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1016920.Four_Fires

Four Fires

Such an  engrossing family saga book that I read in the space of a couple of weeks and I have passed this book on to several people since reading it as I loved it so much.  Why would I not read it again? Same reasons as #2, its just too big to comfortably hold on to when reading.

7: Cleo: The Cat Who Mended a Family by Helen Brown                                          https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7532027-cleo

Cleo: The Cat Who Mended a Family

If you love books about animals and families this is your book.  My daughter read it and then passed it on to me and I’m so pleased she did.  Why would I not read it again? I cried WAY too much reading this.  Such a beautiful story yet so so so sad at both the beginning and the end.  Consider yourself warned.  Buy tissues with this book.

8:  Primal Fear by William Diehl                                                      https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/969195.Primal_Fear

Primal Fear

This was a real spell binding page turner.  I loved this book and, once again,  I was given to me and I have passed it on to several people.  Why would I not read it again?  The movie absolutely wrecked it for me.  In the opening 10 minutes the race of the Janet (she was African American in the book) and Goodman (he was white New York Irish ex boxer in the book) had been swapped and that annoyed the hell out of me.  I REALLY hate it when movies mess with things like that! Makes me so angry!

9:  Go Ask Alice by Beatrice Sparks                                                        https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1094593.Go_Ask_Alice

Go Ask Alice

My mum recommend that I read this book when I was in my early teens so I did and loved it.  I re-read it several times during my teenage years.  Why would I not read it again?  I found out it was a lie!!!

Go Ask Alice is based on the actual diary of a fifteen-year-old drug user.  It is not a definitive statement on the middle-class, teenage drug world. It does not offer any solutions.  It is, however, a highly personal and specific chronicle. As such, we hope it will provide insights into the increasingly complicated world in which we live.  Names, dates, places and certain events have been changed in accordance with the wishes of those
concerned.
The Editors.
They lied to me!!! I can’t stand a lie.  If they had portrayed it as a story that could be true in countless homes or as a cautionary tale for teens then I would be fine with it and still love the story but THEY LIED TO ME!
10: Lord of the Flies by William Golding                                            https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/10032866-lord-of-the-flies
Lord of the Flies
This was a forced read for 5th form English and I was determined to hate it . . . but I didn’t . . . and that annoyed me.  It was the second time in the same year that the teacher did that to me and To Kill a Mockingbird will always remain my favorite book so this poor sausage has been relegated to read it, loved it, won’t read it again pile.
That’s all for this one 🙂 All covers are courtesy of Goodreads.
Ka Kete Ano xx
Posted in Reading

Top Ten Tuesday: Characters I Liked That Were In Non-Favorite/Disliked Books

April 3

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I discovered this fun blog via Death By Tsundoku Top Ten Tuesday is a meme originated by The Broke and the Bookish now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week the theme is:

This week the theme is: Characters I Liked That Were In Non-Favorite/Disliked Books

Please note I am having a ridiculously busy year and am now running really late on this meme but as I love it I want to catch up so you are all about to be spammed with multiple posts as I finish my back log 😉

Crud! This ones going to be tough

1:  Tess of the D’Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy                          https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/16692883-tess-of-the-d-urbervilles

Tess of the D'Urbervilles

Marian, Izz Huett, and Retty Priddle: aka the milk maids.  As far as I could tell they were the only redeeming feature is the tale.  They were fun and loud and even bawdy at times but actually came across as real people and not as lettuce sandwiches (all greenery and no substance) like the main characters of the book.

2:  Asylum Trilogy by Amy Cross                                                              https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/16114807-asylum

Asylum (The Asylum Trilogy, #1)

Annie Radford: Although the trilogy is very tedious and disjointed I did like the character of Annie.  It was very obvious that she had mentally taken a leave of absence but the character herself was very readable.  It was a good thing she was the first character up in the trilogy or this series would have wound up in the ‘could not finish’ pile.

3:  Interview with the Vampire by Anne Rice                               https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/978945.Interview_with_the_Vampire

Interview with the Vampire (The Vampire Chronicles, #1)

Claudia: This kid got robbed of her puberty and was not ashamed to be angry about it. Only redeeming feature in an otherwise long winded boring vampire drama.  One of the few times I have ever preferred the movie.

4:  Once Were Warriors by Alan Duff                                               https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/12360719-once-were-warriors

Once Were Warriors (Once were warriors trilogy, #1)

Grace: She was a beautiful caring soul in an otherwise abysmal home.  She was the only light in the room.  I’m really pleased I read the book after I had seen the movie as I really hated the way the book was written.  Apparently I am one of the few who feel this way about the book so fully expect to be disowned by all kiwidom.

5:  Plain Truth by Jodi Picoult                                                    https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/14875.Plain_Truth

Plain Truth

Ellie Hathaway: I really couldn’t believe in this book.  Don’t get me wrong, I could see how a traumatised, very religious young girl could block out being pregnant but for it to drag out that long was quite hard to swollow. HOWEVER I did enjoy the character of Ellie and would love to meet her again in another book.  She was just so strong and determined.  Gotta love that in an attorney.

6: Solomon’s Song by Bryce Courtney                                           https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/11896.Solomon_s_Song

Solomon's Song

Solomon: I loved this guy but for me this book was just one too many and I couldn’t finish it.

7: For a Ghost-Free Time, Call . . . by Sean Kelly                            https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31625567-for-a-ghost-free-time-call

For a Ghost-Free Time, Call

Jared: I know.  Again he is the main character.  I didn’t find myself gripped by the book but enjoyed the character.  Reminded me a little of Odd Thomas but more criminally.  Am seriously considering reading more in the series and hope they get better 🙂

8:  Mount! by Jilly Cooper                                                                     https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25782881-mount

Mount!

Rupert & Taggie Campbell-Black:  I adore Jilly Cooper books but this one just seemed a step too far off the track.  After how many years love rat Rupert looks to cheat on his wife?!? Taggie nearly goes down the same path?!? WTF!!!! It just didn’t feel right I’m sorry.  I do, however, still adore these two and can’t wait for the next installment 🙂

9: The Color of Magic by Terry Pratchett                                       https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34497.The_Color_of_Magic

The Color of Magic (Discworld, #1; Rincewind #1)

The Luggage:  I love Terry Pratchett HOWEVER I was late to the party after reading this one in my teens.  It didn’t rock me.  The Luggage had me in hysterics though, swallowing monsters, protecting Twoflower, eating ships.  It is very homicidal luggage.  10 years later I discovered Nanny Og and it was all over.  Often thought perhaps I should re-read this one. You know.  Give it a second chance as it were.

10.  Tis a Memoir by Frank McCourt                                                      https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/4912._Tis_A_Memoir

'Tis A Memoir (Frank McCourt, #2)

Frank: Ok this one is technically not a character as it is a real person but I’ve run out of ones to use right now lol I loved Angela’s Ashes but didn’t really enjoy this one as much.  Still, I greatly admire Frank on the whole.

Thats this weeks another week caught up on.  All covers are courtesy of Goodreads.

Ka Kete Ano xx

 

Posted in Reading

Top Ten Tuesday: Books That Take Place In Another Country

March 27

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I discovered this fun blog via Death By Tsundoku Top Ten Tuesday is a meme originated by The Broke and the Bookish now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week the theme is:

This week the theme is: Books That Take Place In Another Country

Please note I am having a ridiculously busy year and am now running really late on this meme but as I love it I want to catch up so you are all about to be spammed with multiple posts as I finish my back log 😉

As I live in New Zealand nearly all of them are set in another country so yay this one should be easy 🙂

1:  We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28251249-we-have-always-lived-in-the-castle

We Have Always Lived in the Castle

I’m starting with the last book I finished, which I also loved.  Set in Vermont, the Blackwood family can only be describe as crackers.  After the mass murder by poisoning of the majority of the family, followed by the subsequent trial, Merricat (Mary Katherine), Constance and Uncle Julian become pretty much become recluses and rarely venture out although Merricat does the weekly trip into the village for necessities.  The thoughts that go through Merricat’s mind while on these trips pretty much tweeks your spidey senses from the first chapter.  Everything changes one day when cousin Charles makes a sudden unexpected visit . . .

2:  We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver                https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/535906.We_Need_to_Talk_About_Kevin

We Need to Talk About Kevin

Well that was a disturbing yet amazing read (then watch).  Set in New York State its a story about a child who is, well, difficult.  He is not the average happy go lucky toddler by any means.  The story is told from the perspective of his mother and yea, she definitely makes some mistakes. What would you do if your child came out the womb unhappy, violent and perhaps born with a psychotic personality disorder?

3:  One for the Money by Janet Evanovich                               https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/6853.One_for_the_Money

https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1316730230l/6853.jpg

If you are after a good girly crime read with loads of laughs, and a little romance, then I highly recommend diving into the Stephanie Plum series.  Set in New Jersey Stephanie finds herself becoming the worst bounty hunter in the world.  Every book has a new old car as she tends to blow them up as well as new crooks to catch.  From falling off a fire escape and landing in dog diarrhoea to befriending the worlds best plus sized former (eventually) prostitute you will find yourself laughing out loud A LOT 🙂

4:  Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt                                                   https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/376609.Angela_s_Ashes

Angela's Ashes (Frank McCourt, #1)

I read this because it was recommended and fully expected to hate on it but, turns out, I loved it.  Set at first in Brooklyn, then later on in Limerick, its a true tale of one mans childhood journey through poverty and his dads alcoholism.  At times the story will make you cry and at others make you laugh.  Truly a beautiful story that will stay with you long after you turn the last page.

5: Homer’s Odyssey: A Fearless Feline Tale, or How I Learned about Love and Live with a Blind Wonder Cat by Gwen Cooper                                    https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7303403-homer-s-odyssey

Homer's Odyssey: A Fearless Feline Tale, or How I Learned about Love and Life with a Blind Wonder Cat

I love a good cat tale, and this was a good one 🙂 A true story about a New York City rescue kitty that’s blind as well.  A feel good book to make you smile and remember that not all humans are assholes 🙂

6:  Four Fires by Bryce Courtenay                                                   https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1016920.Four_Fires

Four Fires

The Australian version of Angela’s Ashes except its not a true story.  Really really well written and really hard to put down. Set in small town Australia it follows the lives and hardships of the Maloney’s.  If you liked ‘Angela’ then rush out and get this one.

7:  The Help by Kathryn Stockett                                                        https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18619999-the-help

The Help

Growing up in New Zealand shields you from a lot of racism and bigotry.  Don’t get me wrong, it still exists here just like everywhere else in the world but we just don’t see it like they do in other places.  Therefore books like this one, set somewhere in Mississippi are always a bit of an eye opener to me because quite frankly, apart from overhearing the occasional nasty comment I have never been a part of a society where segregation or bigotry is even a thing.  We treat people with ginger hair worse than we treat people of different skin tones (Hug a ginger day is a real thing here that would cause both my brother and sister to refuse to leave the house for the day due to random hug bombs from strangers).  I have to say I love the women in this book although I am never eating chocolate pie again 🙂

8:  Angels and Demons by Dan Brown                                       https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/578587.Angels_and_Demons

Angels and Demons (Robert Langdon, #1)

I loved this book and could hardly put it down.  Set in most of Europe at some stage or another it was a fast paced mystery thriller that kept my attention from start to finish AND it had puzzles 😀 I am very pleased that I read it first because I really struggled with DaVinci Code as there was too much math in that one for me.  I loved this one so much that I made my non-reader husband read it (he loved it by the way), then passed it on to one of my besties who then passed it on to her husband who then passed it on to someone else and so on and so on 🙂 I love it when a book just keeps moving 😀

9:  One Rainy Night by Richard Laymon                                        https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/714243.One_Rainy_Night

One Rainy Night

This was the first Richard Laymon book I ever read.  Sadly I discovered him after he had passed but I have read everything since 🙂 Set in middle class America in a town called Bixby, one night someone is tied to the football goalposts and set fire to.  Not long after it starts to rain a strange black substance.  Anyone who is caught out in it is instantly turned into a homicidal manic and goes on a killing spree with a smile on their face.  Laymon was the master of sex, violence and bouncing boobs with a knack for crossing the line so nothing was sacred.  If you don’t like horror then this is definitely not for you 🙂

10:  Riders by Jilly Cooper                                                                      https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/339218.Riders

Riders (Rutshire Chronicles, #1)

Ahhhh my love of bawdy British novels began with this book 🙂 I was in my late teens when I read this and I spent the entire novel with either my eyes popping out of my head or laughing my ass off.  Jilly Cooper is the supreme queen of this genre and even though the books are starting to get a little tired I will still be reading the next one as soon as it hits the shelves.

So that’s my top for this catch up.  All cover shots are courtesy of Goodreads.

Ka Kete Ano xxx

 

Posted in Reading

Top Ten Tuesday: Books On My Spring (Autumn here) 2018 TBR

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I discovered this fun blog via Death By Tsundoku Top Ten Tuesday is a meme originated by The Broke and the Bookish now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week the theme is:

This week the theme is: Books On My Spring (Autumn here in NZ) 2018 TBR

I have such a stack! It literally is the spare bedroom which also resembles a used book store.  These are the ones that I can’t wait to climb into.  Everything is on my Goodreads ‘Want to read’ list because I like to keep track of these things 😀

1:  The Wee Free Men (Discworld #30)  by Terry Pratchett

The Wee Free Men (Discworld, #30; Tiffany Aching, #1)
 Yes I have read this before BUT its one of my favourites and I have just bought all 5 in the series so yes,  this is going to be a marathon read 😀  These little blue fella’s are not only rude but they are also hilarious 😀

2:  We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson

We Have Always Lived in the Castle

I loved The Haunting movie and this book keeps coming up in various things that see.  When I found it in the classic section of the local book store recently I just had to bring it home with me.

3:  The Woman in Black (The Woman in Black #1)  by Susan Hill

The Woman in Black

Again I loved the movie but in this case I didn’t realise that it was a book.  One of the prompts for the Popsugar reading challenge is for a book that was made into a movie so this was an easy select.

4:  The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold

The Lovely Bones
Another book that’s been on my list since I saw the movie and, again, I can use it for a Popsugar prompt.  Such a beautiful yet sad movie, I can’t wait to read this.

5: Ready Player One (Ready Player One #1)  by Ernest Cline

Ready Player One (Ready Player One, #1)
This one’s had a lot of hype so when I found it in a second-hand book shop I picked it up.  I’m going through a wee phase where I’m into dystopian societies so it appealed.  Didn’t realise that it was made into a movie until last night when I stumbled across an Ad for it.  Hmmmm might be tonight’s new start.

6:  River God (Ancient Egypt #1)  by Wilbur Smith

River God (Ancient Egypt, #1)
This keeps getting recommended and I keep meaning to read it but I have never quite got there.  This year will be its time.

7:  Sleeping Beauties by Stephen King (Goodreads Author), Owen King (Goodreads Author)

 Sleeping Beauties
When I saw this one in a sale I just had to have it.  Love a good Stephen King read fest 😀

8:  The Princess Bride by William Goldman

The Princess Bride
I’ve had this one in my ‘to read’ pile for too long.  A lot of my reading for this year could be quite hard going or long so this one will be a nice, short change of pace.

9:  One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
I’ve wanted to read this for such a long time and I recently picked it up in the classics section of the local book shop.  It’s a definite for this years read list.

10:  The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas (Goodreads Author)

The Hate U Give
 This one will be my exception to the rule for this year.  After reading several really amazing reviews I am itching to read this one but I don’t have it at this time.  I will borrow it from the library or grab it via book depository if I have to but I will be reading this one this year.
Well that’s my must read list for the next couple of months.  Good thing its coming into winter here.  I can cosy up on the couch in front of the fire or soak in the tub and get on with my epic journey’s 🙂
Ka Kete Ano
Posted in Book, Reading

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Could Re-read Forever

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I discovered this fun blog via Death By Tsundoku Top Ten Tuesday is a meme originated by The Broke and the Bookish now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week the theme is: This week the theme is: Books I Could Re-read Forever

I re-read a lot of books. They’re like old friends 🙂 Narrowing it down to my ten favourites is going to be a challenge.

1. To Kill a Mockingbird (To Kill a Mockingbird #1)

To Kill a Mockingbird

I LOVE this book.  I think I’ve read it about 10 times. I was introduced to it when I was at high school and read it under duress because a teacher had picked it and said we had to BUT I loved it 🙂 Randomly I only watched the movie with Gregory Peck for the first time last year. Still love the book better 😉
Rivals (Rutshire Chronicles #2)
I love Jilly Cooper books and have re-read them many times.  If I had to pick a favourite it would be Rivals. Sadly I was disappointed in the latest installment, Mount, but that won’t stop me from reading the next one if there is one.  they’ve been getting a little ‘same old same old’ over the past few books but they are still a good light-hearted read.

3. Carrie

Carrie
Most definitely my favourite Stephen King.  I re-read this every time I’m sick, which thankfully isn’t a lot but it does mean I have read quite a few times.

4. Daughter of the Blood (The Black Jewels #1)

Daughter of the Blood (The Black Jewels #1)
Anne Bishop would probably be my most favourite author.  I can never wait till the next one comes out and keep an eye on both Amazon and Book Depository for release dates.  I have re-read the first 3 books in the Black Jewels Trilogy, which it was released as originally, at least 6 times.  My daughter also loves this series and I often have to hunt her down if I want to re-read them.

5. Written in Red (The Others #1)

Written in Red (The Others, #1)
I know it’s the same author but I have just finished re-reading this series up to the one being released this year.  I love this series as much as the Black Jewels.

6. Wizard’s First Rule (Sword of Truth #1)

Wizard's First Rule (Sword of Truth, #1)
I’ve read this one 3 times now and still love it.  It grabbed me from the first line way back in the mid 90’s and I still enjoy the series.  Have them all stacked up in the spare bedroom waiting for me to re-start the whole series again 🙂 Might have to wait till the end of the year though, what with the Popsugar challenge and all 😉
Love this series and have re-read several of them over the years 🙂 Have even convinced my husband to read them and he’s only read about 10 books in his entire life.

8. The Wee Free Men (Discworld #30)

The Wee Free Men (Discworld, #30; Tiffany Aching, #1)
Good lord this book makes me laugh.  The rest in the series are also good for hilarity but you just can’t beat the original for belly hurts and eye leakage.  Don’t read in a public place though.  Sometimes the sentences don’t make any sense until you say them out loud and talking to yourself in public is both frowned upon and also a sign of madness.  A great book to re-read whenever life gets sucky.

9. Cross Stitch (Outlander #1)

Cross Stitch (Outlander, #1)

Once again the first book is definitely the best.  Whenever I need a little love I reach for Jamie and Claires story 🙂

10. Guilty Pleasures (Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, #1)
by Laurell K. Hamilton

Guilty Pleasures (Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, #1)
I have re-read the first few of this series loads of times 🙂 You just can’t beat a story about an ass-kicking zombie raiser that has too many monsters in her life.  Sadly, after about book 7, it all starts to get a little boring but the first few remain some of my favourite books 🙂
Well that’s my list for today.  At least it is while I think about it right now.  What would be on yours?
Ka Kete Ano xx
Posted in Book, Reading

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I’ve Decided I’m No Longer Interested in Reading

Because I obviously don’t have enough to do everyday I got all excited and decided to add to my weekly list 😉

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I discovered this fun blog via Death By Tsundoku Top Ten Tuesday is a meme originated by The Broke and the Bookish now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week the theme is: This week the theme is: Books I’ve Decided I’m No Longer Reading.

Could I have picked a harder topic for my first one? I think not haha 😉 But here we go

All titles below are links to the book series Goodreads page.

1. The Lord of the Rings (The Lord of the Rings #1-3)

The Lord of the Rings (The Lord of the Rings, #1-3)

I’m sorry.  I know this is a classic but I just can’t do it.  I have tried several times and have never gotten past the Green Man.  I fall asleep less than a page in every time and, as I have the trilogy in one large thick volume, the book near knocks me out when it hits me in the face.  I don’t know why I am apparently the only person in the world that can’t read and love this book but I am.

2. Cerulean Sins (Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter #11)

Cerulean Sins (Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, #11)
I’ve read all of the Anita Blake series up to this one.  The first few were amazing, fun and thrilling but then it all go complicated and, like all good relationships, has been ruined by too much sex with too many other people.  Anita has gone from being a kick ass zombie raising monster killer to being someone who can’t think past their belt buckle and I just can’t bring myself to pick up the rest of this series at this time.

3. Tricky Twenty-Two (Stephanie Plum #22)

Tricky Twenty-Two (Stephanie Plum, #22)
Again, I have read this series up until this one but I’m bored.  I’ve reached a point where I feel Stephanie needs to get her shit together and doing dumb stuff without thought of consequence is becoming annoying.

4. Gerald’s Game

Gerald's Game
I don’t know why I couldn’t do this one because I love Stephen King and have read most of his.  The guess the premise just doesn’t interest me.  I did watch the movie on Netflix the other night as I was home alone and thought I would give it a go.  It confirmed for me that I really don’t need to read this one.

5. The Picture of Dorian Gray

The Picture of Dorian Gray
I have to admit that this one is on the list because of feed back from a friend.  Over the past few years I have been trying to read a lot of the classic’s.  I was bought up in a house where both my parents read extensively but only of modern literature.  For some reason this gave me a thirst for the classics but its only over the past few years that I have been dipping my toe in and reading them.  This one was on the list till a friend told me she hated it. Has totally put me off of picking it up.

6. My Sister’s Keeper

My Sister's Keeper
The premise behind this book just makes me too angry and I can’t bring myself to read it although I have loved several of Jodi’s books in the past.

7. Solomon’s Song (The Potato Factory #3)

Solomon's Song
Loved the Potato Factory.  Tolerated Tommo & Hawk.  Solomon’s Song is a book too far with a story that should have ended before now.  Started it but couldn’t finish.

8. Go Ask Alice

byBeatrice Sparks(as “Anonymous”), Anonymous
Go Ask Alice
I feel a bit funny putting this one on the list because I have read it many times.  I loved this book as a teenager when it was recommended by my 4th form English teacher.  It was said to be a true story published with the consent of Alice’s father.  I found out recently that it was not.  It’s a total work of Fiction.  Portraying it as a true story is in fact a lie.  This has destroyed the book for me and now I think about all the bits that seemed a little far-fetched and realise that it’s because they are.  I feel betrayed by this book now and probably will never read it again.

9. The Fiery Cross (Outlander #5)

The Fiery Cross (Outlander, #5)
I am currently a bit bored with Jamie & Claire.  I will probably pick this series up and try again at some time in the future but for now I have put this series down halfway through this book.

10. The Pillars of Creation (Sword of Truth #7)

The Pillars of Creation (Sword of Truth, #7)
For this I feel the same as number 9 on this list.  I will probably pick this series up again some time in the future but for now its in the one day pile.
So what do you think of my list? What would be on yours?
Ka Kete Ano xx
Posted in Book, Reading

Popsugar 2018 Reading Challenge – January Update

I’m off to a good start 🙂 I only got one book for Christmas this year so I saved it till January 1 and read it that morning 😉

Eat

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36349240-eat

Since reading this I have made several of the recipes and its a winner 🙂 Definitely recommend the purchase 🙂

Also started on the 1st was this little beauty 🙂

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Millennium, #1)

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2429135.The_Girl_with_the_Dragon_Tattoo

COULD NOT PUT IT DOWN! I actually finished this on the 7th and have begged the rest of the series off my neighbour.
As my neighbour was on holiday I had to wait till he got back before getting the continuation of the series so I read this one in the interim.

The Uncommon Reader

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7278024-the-uncommon-reader

Its a short story which was good as I found it rather difficult to find believable.  To believe that the Queen has never really read a book or understood what a library was for is asinine. To believe that she would put aside her duties and public for the sake of a book is even stupider let alone that the writer wanted you to believe that the royal staff would get away with hiding books to make her deal with her public and duties. Mind you, it didn’t help that Norman picked obscure books that you would not hand to a novice reader.

Once you got past that it wasn’t a bad read but it will not be appearing on the highlights list at the end of the year.

There have been a couple of edits to the expected read list and a few more possibly pending as I get excited about different books 🙂 I will do a comparison list at the end of the year to see how much changed 🙂

All in all I think that is a pretty good start to year for this challenge.  I’m still not 100% confident that we will get through the whole thing but am going to give it a good try 🙂

2018 Popsugar Reading Challenge

1. A book made into a movie you’ve already seen The Woman in Black
2. True Crime Dirty Work
3. The next book in a series you started The Girl Who Played with Fire
4. A book involving a heist The Hot Rock
5. Nordic noir The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo Completed 7 Jan 2018
6. A novel based on a real person Florence Foster Jenkins
7. A book set in a country that fascinates you River God
8. A book with a time of day in the title I Shall Wear Midnight
9. A book about a villain or antihero A Clockwork Orange
10. A book about death or grief The Fault in Our Stars
11. A book with a female author who uses a male pseudonym The Cuckoo’s Calling
12. A book with an LGBTQ+ protagonist This is How It Always Is
13. A book that is also a stage play or musical Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West
14. A book by an author of a different ethnicity than you Chinese Cinderella: The True Story of an Unwanted Daughter
15. A book about feminism Jane Eyre
16. A book about mental health Sybil: The Classic True Story of a Woman Possessed by Sixteen Personalities
17. A book you borrowed or that was given to you as a gift Eat Completed 1 Jan 2018
18. A book by two authors Sleeping Beauties
19. A book about or involving a sport Riders
20. A book by a local author The Halfmen of O
21. A book with your favorite color in the title Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe
22. A book with alliteration in the title Déjà Dead
23. A book about time travel The Time Traveler’s Wife
24. A book with a weather element in the title Night of the Twisters
25. A book set at sea And the Band Played On: The Titanic Violinist & the Glovemaker: A True Story of Love, Loss & Betrayal
26. A book with an animal in the title Chicken Soup for the Soul: What I Learned from the Cat: 101 Stories about Life, Love, and Lessons
27. A book set on a different planet The Gunslinger
28. A book with song lyrics in the titleYou Belong To Me
29. A book about or set on Halloween Dark Harvest
30. A book with characters who are twins The Thirteenth Tale
31. A book mentioned in another book I will pick the first book that is mentioned in any of my books 🙂
32. A book from a celebrity book club The Rules of Magic
33. A childhood classic you’ve never read Charlotte’s Web
34. A book that’s published in 2018 Anne Bishop
35. A past Goodreads Choice Awards winner Gone Girl
36. A book set in the decade you were born Go Ask Alice
37. A book you meant to read in 2017 but didn’t get to Bridget Jones’s Diary
38. A book with an ugly cover Need to look at some covers
39. A book that involves a bookstore or library The Uncommon Reader Completed 12 Jan 2018
40. Your favorite prompt from the 2015, 2016, or 2017 POPSUGAR Reading Challenges 2015-A book that has become a movie The Princess Bride
2018 Popsugar Advanced Reading Challenge
1. A bestseller from the year you graduated high school The Silence of the Lambs
2. A cyberpunk book Cinder
3. A book that was being read by a stranger in a public place Need to see someone reading 🙂
4. A book tied to your ancestry The Irish Princess
5. A book with a fruit or vegetable in the title What’s Eating Gilbert Grape
6. An allegory Jonathan Livingston Seagull
7. A book by an author with the same first or last name as you Beloved
8. A microhistory Smoke Gets in Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory
9. A book about a problem facing society today The Hate U Give
10. A book recommended by someone else taking the POPSUGAR Reading Challenge Water for Elephants
Ka Kete Ano
Posted in Book, Life, Reading

Popsugar Reading Challenge 2018

Things have been odd in my house lately.  I’m not really crafting, not really stitching, not really knitting.  I’ve watched a grand total of 3 hours TV in the past 2 weeks.

What am I doing?  I’m reading. A lot. And by a lot I mean A LOT.

I have finished 6 books in the past 2 week.

A Handmaids Tale (Margaret Atwood) Wow

The Lottery (Shirley Jackson) Wow. Short story. Wow

Written in Red (Anne Bishop) Favourite author so yay 🙂

Asylum (Amy Cross) No.  It was terrible

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War (Max Brooks) Undecided whether I liked it or not. Very different

Murder of Crows (Anne Bishop) Continuing story of the Others so yay 🙂

I’ve joined Goodreads and update my status every day.

I am constantly wondering what I am going to read next.

In short I am adicted to reading and I am loving it.

Its not the first time I have had this affliction or more of a relapse really.

I have noticed that I am a little stuck in my reading genre’s so I did a little search and found a wee reading challenge for next year from Popsugar 🙂 Now I’m reasearching and compliling my reading list for next year.  I’m going to try to mostly use books that are already in my home which is quite a few but I know that I will need to outsource some 🙂

If you have any suggestions or recommendations please let me know 🙂  All selected books are subject to mood swings so nothing is set in concret 😀

Oh happy sunfilled relaxing summer days 😀

2018 Popsugar Reading Challenge

1. A book made into a movie you’ve already seen The Woman in Black
2. True Crime Dirty Work
3. The next book in a series you started Some on here are series so I will see what grips me 🙂
4. A book involving a heist The Hot Rock
5. Nordic noir The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
6. A novel based on a real person Florence Foster Jenkins
7. A book set in a country that fascinates you River God
8. A book with a time of day in the title I Shall Wear Midnight
9. A book about a villain or antihero A Clockwork Orange
10. A book about death or grief The Fault in Our Stars
11. A book with a female author who uses a male pseudonym The Cuckoo’s Calling
12. A book with an LGBTQ+ protagonist This is How It Always Is
13. A book that is also a stage play or musical Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West
14. A book by an author of a different ethnicity than you Chinese Cinderella: The True Story of an Unwanted Daughter
15. A book about feminism Jane Eyre
16. A book about mental health Sybil: The Classic True Story of a Woman Possessed by Sixteen Personalities
17. A book you borrowed or that was given to you as a gift May end up borrowing one from the library.  My friends and family don’t really read or give books
18. A book by two authors Sleeping Beauties
19. A book about or involving a sport Riders
20. A book by a local author The Halfmen of O
21. A book with your favorite color in the title Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe
22. A book with alliteration in the title Déjà Dead
23. A book about time travel The Time Traveler’s Wife
24. A book with a weather element in the title Night of the Twisters
25. A book set at sea And the Band Played On: The Titanic Violinist & the Glovemaker: A True Story of Love, Loss & Betrayal
26. A book with an animal in the title Matthew Flinders’ Cat
27. A book set on a different planet The Gunslinger
28. A book with song lyrics in the titleYou Belong To Me
29. A book about or set on Halloween Dark Harvest
30. A book with characters who are twins The Thirteenth Tale
31. A book mentioned in another book I will pick the first book that is mentioned in any of my books 🙂
32. A book from a celebrity book club The Rules of Magic
33. A childhood classic you’ve never read Charlotte’s Web
34. A book that’s published in 2018 Anne Bishop
35. A past Goodreads Choice Awards winner Gone Girl
36. A book set in the decade you were born Go Ask Alice
37. A book you meant to read in 2017 but didn’t get to Bridget Jones’s Diary
38. A book with an ugly cover Need to look at some covers
39. A book that involves a bookstore or library Camino Island
40. Your favorite prompt from the 2015, 2016, or 2017 POPSUGAR Reading Challenges 2015-A book that has become a movie The Princess Bride2018 Popsugar Advanced Reading Challenge

1. A bestseller from the year you graduated high school The Silence of the Lambs
2. A cyberpunk book Cinder
3. A book that was being read by a stranger in a public place Need to see someone reading 🙂
4. A book tied to your ancestry The Irish Princess
5. A book with a fruit or vegetable in the title What’s Eating Gilbert Grape
6. An allegory Jonathan Livingston Seagull
7. A book by an author with the same first or last name as you Beloved
8. A microhistory Smoke Gets in Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory
9. A book about a problem facing society today The Hate U Give
10. A book recommended by someone else taking the POPSUGAR Reading Challenge Water for Elephants

Ka Kete Ano