My September Wrap-Up...

This month was definitely better for reading than August and I'm pleasantly surprised to find I read 4 books over the course of 4 weeks, but I must admit to being a little disappointed in myself for not reading all the ones on my September TBR...but there is an explanation.

Let's start with the books that I did read + some little mini reviews.

1. Who Will Run The Frog Hospital by Lorrie Moore. **
           - If you were to ask me to explain the plot of this story I would find it difficult, as such I am going to be re-reading it before my first Creative Writing lecture on Wednesday as I don't want to appear like a clueless person. It's not that I didn't concentrate when I read it, or even that I didn't read it. I just didn't understand. It is generally the way with Creative Writing set texts, we read authors such as Ernest Hemingway (his short stories and the like) and the language and the lack of development throughout a story can make it hard to grasp the whole picture, as it was, this story didn't really give me a picture, except a very basic one. So at the moment I give this book 2 out of 5 stars!

2. Wait For You by J.Lynn ***
         - I have done a whole review on this book already so I will leave it to you to read that if you would like to know my thoughts. But I gave it 2.5 stars out of 5 (Although it is represented as a 3 above)

3. The Fault In Our Stars by John Green ****
        - Finally I have read this story, and I am in two minds as to whether to do a full review or not, as this story is kind of old news but I do have a different opinion of it to most people. I enjoyed it, but I did not think it was the story of the century. As that is, it may be because I've seen the movie, I know the hype, I've known the story for a while just not read the book. If that has altered my opinion then I apologise to Mr Green for this less-than-amazing review, but it is the way I felt. I don't enjoy stories about teenagers dying of cancer, and he can argue all he likes that whilst the main story is not about two teens cancer sufferers falling in love, it is a part of it and so make 'Sick-Lit' a minor genre. And I don't enjoy it. Whether because it makes me sad, or just generally dislike it, I don't enjoy it. That being said, he does a very job (the best I've read so far) of using this plot line as a way of showing the truth of real sufferers. Overall, however, I didn't feel punched-in-the-stomach wowed by this story.
I have given it 4 stars out of 5 which too me is a good book, as it is very well-written, but not the best book I've read all year.

4. Downton Abbey Scripts for Season 1 by Julian Fellowes *****
         - I have mentioned this prematurely
in my TBR for next month as I am currently reading the 2nd book in this collection and I loved it! I can't say that it is a story, although technically it is a book of 7 episode length stories, but it is a book and I cannot recommend it enough, so for once...I am giving out a rare 5 out of 5 review! This book will not be for everyone, but it is very good for all those, like me, who love Downton Abbey and enjoy reading scripts!

That is it for my September Wrap-Up. Definitely read more than I expected this month, what with work until the 24th and University from the 26th it has been hectic this last month. Now to read, hopefully, my October TBR.

Let me know what you've read this month. And Happy Reading!

My October TBR & Update //

So where have I been lately...mainly under a massive amount of packing at home as I have finally moved into my new house at University! Exciting and also very care-free. It's nothing like moving into dorms, freaking out over being alone for the first time and for the majority of the time actually being alone. Living in a house in year 2 is really like moving into a family, and yes I know how corny that sounds.

But it's true! We have a sofa and mainly sit there and chat, and not just 2 of us but ALL of us! It's lovely. So far, I have discovered that nobody really reads which is sad, to me, but not really a bother for them. But it would have been nice to be able to discuss books with my roomies, but oh well, at least I still have that book blogosphere!

So, getting back to the book blog...

October's To-Be-Read List

I don't want to be one of those people that says every month 'oh doesn't time fly' so I won't. But just to let everyone know: there's 3 paychecks left until Christmas! Present buying time! And maybe put aside of the TBR lists for Christmas wishlists!

My To-Be-Read List

1. Downton Abbey Scripts from Series 2 By Julian Fellowes.
                 -  I found the Scripts for series 1 in my local Oxfam and nabbed it without a second thought and I adored it! I love the TV series (who doesn't!) but the scripts, with deleted scenes and Julian Fellowes own edits and opinions really is good! If anyone likes the series and likes reading scripts, it really is just like reading a story without the actions between dialogue, then check this book series out! So good! Clearly this is the 2nd book, as I devoured the 1st within a few hours, and this is the book I carry over to October as it is chunkier than the first!

Apologies for Amazon 'Click' button atop the image, it was the only image of the book I could find.
2. Cinder by Marissa Myer
                 - This is a book that I really wanted to read for a while. It is a take on the traditional Cinderella but with a bionic Cinderella, a plague and a matter of life-and-death for the whole world. Which sounds thrilling and it peaks my interest hugely. It is the first book of three, so I hope I'll enjoy it enough to buy the next two after this!

3. A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness
                 - I have heard so many good things about this book, and Patrick Ness in general, lately and I really want to sit down and read this book. I've got the Chaos trilogy at home as well (I have only brought a shelf of books to University with me) but this is the book I have been recommended the most. I can't tell you too much about it, besides the fact that there is a really creepy/awesome copy of this book in a kind of graphic novel format, but with words as well as pictures. I'd choose that one over the white cover one.
Cool Graphic-Novel-isk version

4. Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
                  - This is a slightly older book from Booktube that had some hype about a year ago. I've heard mixed things about this novel. It is about a girl who committed suicide but before she did she sent messages to people who had something to do with her suicide. It sounds interesting as to me the girl who committed suicide sounds really mean to blame people personally for her suicide, but at the same time you have to think that it is their fault if she committed suicide. It is causing conflict before it evens begins, which, again, peaks my interest.

5. (If possible book) - Stardust by Neil Gaiman
                    - This is one of my favourite films ever, so I'm hoping the book is just as good but because I love the movie so much I'm almost put off reading this book. But as it is so small, and I think it's time I read it after nearly a year on my shelf, I am going to try and read this story before the end of October, unless University takes over my life. Of course.

So that is my October TBR. I hope you enjoyed and let me know what you're reading this month!

Wait For You by J.Lynn Review

Wait For You Review

Published: 2013

Author: Jennifer L Armentrout also known as J.Lynn (Wait For You is part of a series, the other books are about different characters from within this story)

Rating: ***

I wasn’t expecting much with this novel, so what I got was good and better than I expected but it wasn’t the best novel I have read this year and I’m not sure I would recommend it to anyone, besides those that enjoy erotica and in-your-face love stories.

The story itself is immature, with some adult themes and language, but some of the characters are likable and the story is easy to read as each chapter does leave you with wanting just a little more.

The main narrator is Avery. A quiet girl who hates being late for class, who happens to bump into the handsomest boy in her college. Already my head was turning back to my bookshelf searching for a book that wasn’t going to make me want to re-evaluate my love life for the 10th time this year. However, then the scar is revealed on Avery’s wrist. The kind of scar you can only get one way…and there was the hook.

I wanted to know what happened to Avery to give her this scar, particularly since she mentions she was only 15 – a young age for someone to even consider suicide let alone attempt it. The plot revolves around her and the boy-next-door, again I rolled my eyes.

I have nothing against love stories but I do have something against love stories that seem to orbit around the best looking guys around, with wicked sense of humours, confidence that could create a new planet and a good-natured friendly feel which makes me want to cry that I don’t have it. People like this, don’t exist, and because of this I found it hard to fall into the story as I was constantly being reminded that it was just a work of fiction.

My rant is subsiding as I come onto the pace of the plot. It works well and in the middle I was hooked but then the sex scenes occurred, or the almost sex scenes occurred. I seriously think these two characters get it on all day, fall asleep and then wake up again to do it all over. It drove me insane.

There is more sex scenes, the use of the work ‘fuck’ and I-Love-You-more moments than in the whole of the Fifty Shades of Grey series! It is a little distracting from the main issues, which is why I call it immature. For a few chapters there is an actual viable plot that will make the less-romantically inclined feel something for both Avery and her God of a boyfriend Cam. But it is constantly over-shadowed in my opinion.

The writing is good, although, as a creative writing student I really wanted Jennifer to discard one scene that was utterly unnecessary and was also repeated in the following chapter anyway. But this is more of a writers edit than an ‘I hate it, get rid of it’ suggestion.

Overall, the plot had some basis to it and the writing at times made me concerned for the characters and where the plot was headed, but the continuous use of sexual language, scenes and innuendos throughout the last 150 pages or so really put me off the novel. If it had had more basis to do with the mature themes, rather than a brief scene in which they connected, I could understand their use. But considering what the character of Avery went through, and what her scars represent, the sex scenes were really over-whelming in terms of plot and fictitious licence and overall spoilt an otherwise good book for me.

I give it 2.5 stars overall – although it says at the top 3 (I can’t find a half-star button my keyboard) as I didn’t have to  force myself to finish it, but at the same time it didn’t make me want to sit down and read it all at once. This is how I judge my books.

What did you think of ‘Wait For You’ by J.Lynn?

#Bookadayuk September

Since entering the world of Booktube I have been introduced to many things, and this is one of my favourites. I love list-making, and I like thinking about the books I read in a different way. With a #Bookadayuk you don't have to read a book a day, just think about a particular book a day, following the instructions below.

Since I only learnt about this yesterday and have been late in posting I shall answer all questions on here for now and then later over on my Twitter account:

1. Favourite book about books and/or bookshops
This was a surprising hard one for me but I'm going to go with 'Northanger Abbey' by Jane Austen. The main character Catherine Morland, reads a lot of gothic romances  throughout the story and this affects the way she see's things and interprets real-life events, leading to trouble. It's not based arounds books but because she's read so many it affects the plot greatly.

2. Favourite book set in a school
I'm afraid I'm going to go with the most obvious book and that is: Harry Potter. How could I not. Every book is set, besides the beginning of Book 7 at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, and they are my favourite books ever!

3. Best Home Front Novel
I'm assuming this is Home Front as in the usual 'home front' term used for World War One and Two. Thus I am choosing one of my favourite children's stories: Goodnight Mister Tom by Michelle Magorian. Such a sweet story based around a young evacuee sent to the countryside during the Second World War. Lovely little read.

4. The book you bought for the cover
Definitely Dash and Lily's book of dares by David Levithan and Rachel Cohn. I love this book, but the cover was really what caught my eye. It is so pretty, and I remember I bought it in the Works just after Christmas when that 'only 11 months til Christmas' feeling was coming over me and I saw it and it made happy.

5. The book you bought besides the cover
I suppose it is my most recent buy of: The Knife of never letting go by Patrick Ness. I found all three of the Walking Chaos books in my local charity shop and the last two were the same white traditional cover by the first one was the World Book Night Cover 2013 so looks completely different in spine and cover to the other two. This would usually bug the hell out of me, and I must admit to shoving something in front of it on my bookcase, but I couldn't just buy the last two and not the first one!
On the left: the book I got. On the right: the book I would have preferred.
6. Favourite book of Short Stories
I don't read collection of short stories, but rather just random ones, so I thought I would be sneaky and choose a book of short non-fiction stories: Forgotten Voices of the Great War edited by Max Arthur. I really was moved by this book and enjoy reading the tales of the men/women who fought/lived during the First World War.

7. Favourite Fictional Monarch
I thought I would go with a less obvious choice here and choose: Jesse and Leslie from 'The Bridge to Terabitha' by Katerine Paterson. Jesse and Leslie are best friends who, to escape, create the fictional land of Terabithia in their nearby woods. They themselves become the 'monarchs' of the woods. I thought it was a little different.

So that is my #bookadayuk update for now. I might do another concluding post on the month later on. Let me know if I should do a weekly update? And let me know what you post! I love reading things like this!

Happy reading!

August Wrap-Up

This month was a slow month of reading for me...shameful I know!
I've only managed to fully read 2 books! I am horrified! I'll get into the books that I read in a few moments and the book that I am currently reading at the moment as well...but first an explanation. With Summer, for me, comes a lot of work. I am returning to University at the end of this month and I have to fund the entire year from my wages in Summer, hence I have to work an awful lot!

Normally working doesn't affect my reading so much as I can happily sit in the staff room at lunch and read my book whilst eating a microwavable pizza - they're delicious! - but this month it has been impossible to do that due to the amount of gossip at my work, the general business of work and the fact that as the month went on I was so exhausted I just wanted to sleep during my break! So, I haven't read that much.

Now, for the books I have managed to read:

1. Eleanor and Park - Rainbow Rowell: I won't go into too much detail into this book because it is in my top ten post that I did as my welcome but...what I will say is this. If I had only manage to read one book this month I would have been happy. I know there is a lot of hype around this book and I'm sure people are getting to the stage where they want the 'next-big-thing' to come along, but this really is a good book. The characters are realistic, which I love, and the story isn't the typical 'boy-meets-girl-and-falls-in-love' there are twists! ***** book!

2. Ketchup Clouds - Annabel Pitcher: Another book I won't go into too much detail about as my last post was a review on it. I didn't love it, but I didn't hate it. Would lend it to somebody but not go out of my way to recommend it to someone, if you get what I mean. *** book.

3. Knots & Crosses - Ian Rankin: Ok...technically shouldn't be writing about this book because I haven't finished it yet. But I will in a day or so. It is the first story in Rebus collection by Rankin. A series about a police detective who drinks too much, smokes too much and lives in Edinburgh. The story revolves around a serial killer who is taking young girls and killing them. No one knows why? No one can tell who'll be next? And Rebus is sick of the case, but when it becomes personal it becomes his life. It is an interesting story, and one I wouldn't have picked off the shelf if it wasn't for my University reading list. I can't say it's amazing but I like the occasional thrill and that pretty much describes the story: an occasional thrill. At other times a tad boring...I'll do a full review once I've finished it.

So that is my, rather despicable, August Wrap-Up. I hope you've had a better time of reading this month!