Book Review: Lily and the Octopus by Steven Rowley

This is an odd one to try to explain to people.

 Lily and the Octopus is about Ted, who talks to his dachshund, Lily, and thinks he can hear her talking back. It’s unclear whether he genuinely believes she is talking to him, or if it’s just how he copes. At the beginning of the book, Ted notices a tumour on Lily’s head, although he doesn’t name it, instead seeing it as an octopus, which shortly also begins talking to him.

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Top 5 Wednesday: Creepy Settings.

Top 5 Wednesday is a meme hosted by Thoughts on Tomes on Youtube. I don’t participate every Wednesday but I do take part on occasion, whenever I notice a topic I really like. This week’s theme is very appropriate for the month of October: creepy settings in books.


5. Aragog’s lair in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.

As I write this there is a large spindly spider in the corner of the ceiling and I am resolutely ignoring it…

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 Who isn’t terrified of Aragog? Even those of you who think arachnophobia is irrational (it is perfectly rational, thank you very much – THEY’VE GOT EIGHT EYES AND EIGHT LEGS) have to admit that, of all the scenes in the Forbidden Forest, this has got to be the most frightening. I always think of the movie when I picture this theme – that moment when Ron and Harry look up to see the spiders dancing over their heads (shudder).

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Book Review: ‘The Hate U Give’ by Angie Thomas.

thugThe Hate U Give is about a black teenager called Starr whose best friend is shot by a white police officer for no reason. Starr lives in a mostly black neighbourhood rife with gang violence and goes to school in a predominantly white, wealthy environment. Her two worlds, which she so painstakingly tries to keep separate, crash together when Khalil’s murder becomes national news and Starr must come to terms with losing longterm friends, both to armed police and to the underlying racist thoughts of the people she once trusted. She must learn to be at peace with her own identity which she has hidden from everyone for so long.

This is a hyped-up YA novel and we all know how disappointing hyped YA novels can be. The Hate U Give delivers: it is passionate, realistic and important. I’ve just heard that it’s going to be turned into a movie, and if they do it justice I think it could be a really great thing. (Rue from The Hunger Games is playing Starr – I bloody love that.)

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January Reads 2017

It must have been a whole year since I started my book blog as I think my first ever post was a January wrap-up! How exciting! If, you know, you don’t have much else going on in your life.

So I have been somewhat quiet on the blogosphere, and my 2017 target to love reading again has been a little bit the reason for this. It’s going well, because I am enjoying all the books I’m reading, but the downside is that I don’t have as many ideas for blog posts, because I’m not forcing my way through so many books and therefore having more subjects floating around in my brain. Hopefully it’s just a bit of a blogging slump and I’ll be posting much more regularly again soon!

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Top Ten Disappointing Reads.

Because I like controversy, here’s a few books I was expecting to be great but ended up being variations of OK to downright terrible. Sorry if any of your favourites are on this list!

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10.
The Light of the Fireflies by Paul Pen.

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I actually started out really loving this book. Its Room-esque plot was intriguing and I found the writing style easy and interesting to read. It’s about a family living in what we assume is a basement or a nuclear bunker, where they have been living for years without ever going outside, and suddenly the daughter is pregnant – so we know something’s up.

 The ending was such a disappointment. After an exciting, sinister read, I was fully expecting to give this book 10 out of 10 – when suddenly it ends in a shower of victim-shaming. The daughter has been bullied and abused by other members of the family, yet somehow it is she who gets her comeuppance, not her abusers, and she is painted as the villain.

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I’m Very Thankful For…

Being English, I don’t celebrate Thanksgiving myself, but I like the idea of going around the table and saying things you’re thankful for. We often take things for granted. So, in no particular order, here’s a list of bookish things I’m really grateful to have in my life.


Ebooks.

I adore ebooks. I love their portability and the fact that I can buy as many as I like without having to find the space. I also prefer reading ebooks, because I can read in whatever position I like without my neck aching. Sure, they have their cons as well, and they’re not everybody’s cup of tea, but I’m a big fan.

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