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Paperback Moons

"I fell into a book, and I can't get up"

REVIEW: A STREET CAT NAMED BOB, JAMES BOWEN

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Rating: 3 moons

“Cats are notoriously picky about who they like. And if a cat doesn’t like it’s owner it will go and find another one. Cats do that all the time.”

As a self confessed ‘Crazy Cat Lady’, this book was one that I couldn’t wait to read! My friend had bought me the book as a Christmas present and I decided to start it as soon as I’d finished my previous read. I read a lot more fictional novels than I do memoirs and non-fiction, but I have recently begun to read more autobiographies and have really enjoyed them so this was a great read for the start of 2017!

This is the story of James Bowen, and how Bob the cat managed to help him turn his life around. James is a homeless man who has recently begun to overcome his addiction to drugs; by day he busks on the streets of London. One day he comes home to the flat which he has finally been given, and discovers a ginger tom cat in his building who seems to attach himself to him.

Now I’m a huge sucker for any animal who looks like it needs some love, and although James wasn’t as enthusiastic as I would have been about this gorgeous cat who had decided it wanted him as his new owner, the love that grew between the pair was so heartwarming.

The book is in no way the work of literary genius, but I don’t know how anyone could not be left with a smile on their face after reading about the friendship that grows between this struggling pair.

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If you feel like you need a pick me up during this winter months, I’d definitely recommend this book; and if you still need some convincing? Just have a look on Youtube for videos of Bob, or even better watch the film that was released a few months ago starring Bob himself!

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TO BE READ TAG

I saw this tag on a few blogs and thought it would be a good one to try as I have soooo many books that I’ve bought and haven’t read yet. So here goes…

1. How do you keep track of your TBR pile?

I have a Goodreads account that I use a lot so this is my main way of keeping track of all of the books I see and want to read. I also keep a record of all the books I’ve bought and haven’t read and also the ones I’d like to buy next! If you’d like to have a look at my Goodreads then here’s the link to my account, feel free to add me!

2. Is your TBR mostly print or ebook?

Most of my TBR is print as I really like having physical copies of book. I have a really bad habit of getting a book on my Kindle and then also buying the print copy (or vice versa). A waste of money I know but I like to have the option!

3. How do you determine which book from your TBR pile to read next?

It’s just pot luck a lot of the time for me. I tend to go look on my bookshelf and pick out any that appeal to me at the time! I tend to alternate between genres, so if I’ve just read a thriller then I might go for a chick lit next.

4. A book that’s been on your TBR pile to longest?

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Before I Go To Sleep by S.J. Watson has been on my TBR pile for nearly three years now, I bought it on my Kindle and still haven’t got round to reading it! It’s definitely one I want to read soon as I’ve recently bought S.J. Watson’s other novel Second Life and I have an OCD thing where I like to try and read an author’s books in order of when they were published! (Sometime’s I don’t follow this if there’s a book I really can’t wait to read!)

5. A book that you’ve recently added to your TBR pile?

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The latest book added to my TBR pile is When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi. It’s the story of a neurosurgeon who is diagnosed with lung cancer at the age of 36. Paul Kalanithi actually passed away whilst writing his memoir, so I’m expecting an emotional read but I’ve read a lot of great reviews of this book so it’s definitely one I want to read soon.

6. A book on your TBR strictly because of it’s beautiful cover.

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The Nest by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney has the most beautiful cover! It is based around four adult siblings and the fate of shared inheritance that has shaped their choices and lives. The story sounds like something I would definitely be interested to read but the cover definitely pushed me to add it to my TBR pile.

7. A book on your TBR that you never actually plan on reading.

Call it ambitious but I’d love to read all of the books on my TBR pile! I do occasionally go through and have a bit of a ‘clear out’, deleting any books that I no longer have much of an interest in, so everything on there is something that I want to read one day.

8. An unpublished book on your TBR that you’re excited for.

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C.L. Taylor’s new book The Escape is one I’m really looking forward to reading! I’ve read all of Taylor’s other three books, and really enjoyed all of them so I’m hoping that this one lives up to those. The book is a thriller about a woman who begins to feel serious threat towards herself and her daughter, leading to her family and others turning against her. It’s due to come out in March and I’ve pre-ordered it on Amazon so definitely look out of my review!

9. A book on your TBR that you’re dying to read.

screen-shot-2017-01-20-at-13-29-12I’m really looking forward to reading Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty! I love the author’s books and this is her latest, which was published last year. I’m not a big fan of hardback books so I’m currently waiting for the paperback edition to be released so that I can read it. It’s due to go on sale in April so I’ll definitely be buying it as soon as it’s available!

10. The number of books on your Goodreads TBR shelf?

I currently have 290 books on my TBR shelf (ambitious I know!). I think I need to have a little bit of a break from adding new books on to there and just work through reading as many of the books I already have as possible!

REVIEW: The Help, Kathryn Stockett

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  Rating: 4 moons

“We are just two people. Not that much seperates us. Not nearly as much as I’d thought.”

I had been wanting to read this novel for a while, since seeing the film adaptation. I’m usually one of those people who refuse to watch a film until I’ve read the book it was adapted from, but on this occasion I made an exception and I’m very glad that I did go back to read Kathryn Stockett’s novel afterwards (even if it took me a while!).

Set during the start of the Civil Rights movement, the book is narrated from three perspectives: Aibleen, Minny and Skeeter. I always enjoy reading books which switch between viewpoints as I feel like it gives me a lot more insight in to the characters mindsets and allows me to become more involved in the story.

Aibleen is an older maid who has worked for white families since she was young. She is currently working for Miss Elizabeth Leefolt and looking after young Mae Mobley. Aibleen’s chapters are based a lot around her relationship with Mae Mobley and what it’s like to raise a white child. The attachment Mae Mobley has to Aibleen is really heartwarming and their relationship was so sweet to read about.

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Minny is a younger maid with a sassy mouth which leads to her getting fired by Hilly Holbrook, Miss Leefolt’s best friend and the town’s most influential woman. After Minny is hired by Celia Foote, who has no experience as an employer, she has to teach her the appropriate ways to behave around a black maid. I found their developing friendship great to read about and Celia’s character was really refreshing in comparison to the likes of Miss Holbrook and Miss Leefolt.

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Miss Skeeter is a young white woman who has recently returned from college, she is different from her friends in that she is not as interested in finding a husband and starting a family and wants to become a writer. It is due to her love for her maid Constantine, who has mysteriously left her home while she was at college, that she is inspired to write about the lives of black maid’s in Mississippi. She wants to include the real experiences of the house maids in her work and her passion and persistence leads her to Aibleen and Minny.

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There is so much more to this book than meets the eye and the characters really are the heart and soul of the story. The characterisation of the three main women and all of those surrounding their story is brilliant, and Kathryn Stockett did a great job of exploring each character’s life and outlook. Some parts left me laughing, others made me tear up and parts just made me mad but I would recommend this book to anyone!

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MY LIFE IN BOOKS TAG

I thought it would be good idea to use a book tag to help introduce myself to you all a little bit more! After looking at a few other blogs and posts, I found the My Life in Books tag which I thought would be perfect! So here goes…

1. Find a book for each of your initials

Lifesaver by Louise Voss

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I read this book last year after getting a good offer on the Kindle edition. I was familiar with the author from her work with Mark Edwards and had read two of their thriller novels. I was expecting something similar but this book was a lot less crime and thriller and a lot more heartfelt drama. Although I struggled to get in to this at the start, it was definitely worth the read.

– The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty

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After reading one of Liane Moriarty’s books whilst on holiday a few years ago I was really keen to try out some of her other novels. As soon as I read about The Husband’s Secret I knew it was going to be one I enjoyed and I wasn’t wrong. The author brilliantly links three women’s stories and there are plenty of twists and turns to keep the reader engaged.

2. Count your age along your bookshelf, what book is it?

Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey

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I’m 23 years old, and this is the 23rd book on my shelf! My bookshelf is full to the brim with books I’ve bought and haven’t yet read and this is one of them! This is one I’m particularly looking forward to reading as I’ve seen some great reviews of it on Goodreads and I’m not too sure what to expect, which is something I always like in a book.

3. Pick a book set in your city/country

The Yorkshire Pudding Club by Milly Johnson

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I struggled to think of books set in my home city of Leeds (although I’m sure there are a few!) so I’ve chosen this book by Milly Johnson set in South Yorkshire, very close by and somewhere I have a lot of family connections to. Milly Johnson’s books are great if you’re ever looking for a light chick-lit novel to read.

4. Pick a book that represents a destination you would like to travel to

About a Girl by Lindsey Kelk

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A little cliche I know, but who doesn’t want to visit Hawaii at some point in their life? I can imagine nothing nicer than sitting on a beach in Hawaii with a cocktail in one hand and a book in the other! I’m a big fan of Lindsey Kelk books and her ability to write chick-lit novels based all over the world meant I struggled to choose between this book and any of those in the ‘I Heart’ series. 

5. Pick a book that is your favourite colour

The Girls by Lisa Jewell

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Blue and purple are my two favourite colours so any book covers with these kind of colours always attract me. I absolutely love the cover for The Girls (and the book is just as good!) I’m the kind of person that will buy a book based solely on how pretty the cover is, which is probably the reason I end up reading a wide variety of genres!

6. Which book do you have the fondest memories of?

The Dustbin Baby by Jacqueline Wilson

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Jacqueline Wilson books were my entire childhood and when I was younger these books really were what got me interested in reading! It was so hard to choose between all of her books, but The Dustbin Baby was definitely one of my favourites.

 

7. Which book did you have the most difficulty reading?

High Fidelity by Nick Hornby

screen-shot-2017-01-06-at-14-40-17This is one book that I really regretted reading once I started. It was such a slow burner and I felt like the story was almost non-existent. I was interested to read a book about a break up from a male perspective, as the majority of novels based on this topic are from a female point of view, but I really found nothing to like about the book. I hate not finishing books so I read the whole thing but I really had to force myself to sit down and read it.

8. Which book in your TBR (To Be Read) file will give you the biggest sense of accomplishment when you finish it?

Little Women by Louise May Alcott

Screen Shot 2017-01-06 at 15.03.22.pngThis classic novel is one I’m ashamed to say I’ve never actually read! I have a list of classics that I would love to read, and this is definitely at the top of them. I’m hoping to buy a selection of the Penguin Clothbound Classics as I absolutely love new covers.

 

I really enjoyed completing this book tag and I’m definitely going to look to do some more of them in the future between my reviews! If anyone else would like to give this one a go then please comment below because I’d love to read all about the books you guys enjoy to read!

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We’ve got to start somewhere…

So I’ve been thinking about setting up this blog for a little while now, and I felt like a new year was a good reason to get going!

I don’t usually set myself New Year’s resolutions, so I’m not going to claim that setting up this page is some kind of ‘new year, new me’ thing because, let’s be honest, if that was the case the chances of me sticking to it would be very slim! Instead, I’m just going to say that a brand new year gave me a little push in to doing something I’ve been wanting to do for a while. I feel like a new year is a little bit of a clean slate, and 2017 will bring a whole new year of books and reading with it.

I’ve always been a keen reader and (despite a blip in my teenagers when I thought maybe I was too cool to read books, madness I know!) I have spent a lot of my life looking for new books to read and trying to make the time to do so. I used to go on holidays and take up the majority of the room in my suitcase with books, and any opportunity to sit and read a book without interruption really is my idea of bliss.

I like the idea of being my own little record of all the books I have read, and hopefully I might be able to make it interesting enough for a few other people to read it too! I’m currently reading my first book of 2017, so as soon as I’m done I’ll be sure to post my first review!

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