Review: A Song for Issy Bradley – Carys Bray

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Since one of my friends reviewed this (Jen) I’ve been absolutely gagging to get my hands on this book. As it was, I went out to buy it and the shop I saw it in had run out of stock so I had to relent and buy the ebook. I didn’t really want to, I’ve been in the mood to buy and read ‘real books’ and I especially didn’t want to buy the ebook because, seriously, isn’t this cover just gorgeous?!

Anyhow, this book the story of how a family copes after the death of their youngest child, Issy. I have to say, I wasn’t disappointed. This book is astoundingly beautiful, it’s heartbreaking and heart-warming all at once. It was a really, really hard subject handled with such tact and authenticity. While heartbreaking in parts there’s smatterings of humour of every day life.

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Review: American Gods – Neil Gaiman

american-gods-book-cover-imageI have finally, finally finished this book! This is a weird one because, to be honest, I still don’t know if I enjoyed it. It was a slow mover, it was exhausting but… I didn’t want to put it down. I couldn’t commit to any other book while this one was still part read. It was just there tormenting me constantly. It’s just taken me ages to actually finish the beast because, in sitting down for nearly a day, I only managed 50 to 60 pages – which dragged, and dragged. But then, even after 6 hours of slogging away I wanted to read more – and I didn’t really understand why that was the case.

I’ve loved previous works by Gaiman, which is why I picked this up as I just wanted to read more. Overall, I was really surprised as this book wasn’t much what I was expecting – but then I don’t really know what I was expecting as I went in to this relatively blind.

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Classical Literature

So, at present I’m still struggling along with Neil Gaiman’s American Gods (which, I have to add, is going on forever) but, thanks to a wonderful part of the internet known as Booktube, I’ve found a whole host of new bookishly-minded folk to increase my reading variety. This is what brings me to the main topic of discussion – Classical Literature. Now, I’ve always had a keen interest in ancient history. I’ve always loved reading about Greeks and Romans and, particularly, Egyptians but I’ve read a woefully small amount of literature from antiquity. Last summer I read Robert Graves’ The Greek Myths and you can find a full review over at goodreads but I have to say, I think maybe it wasn’t the best place to have started with classical literature. So, Jean over at bookishthoughts is running a read-along August – during the month the goal is to read The Odyssey by Homer and Ovid’s Metamorphoses. Jean has also suggested reading Margaret Atwood’s The Penelopiad and Ali Smith’s Girl Meets Boy as the Cannongate modern retellings of the stories, which I am more than happy to do as I adore both of those books and I’d quite like to read the stories they’re both modern adaptations of.

I’m quite lucky in that I already have a beautiful Penguin clothbound edition of The Odyessey and I’m thinking I might invest in Ovid in the recently released clothbound also, just because they’re beautiful:

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If anyone is interested in joining this Classical Literature readalong, there is a group on goodreads, anyone is welcome to join! I’m really, really excited about this – having been wanting to widen my reading a lot lately. So yes! This is what my reading future looks like and I like it, a lot!

When Books Happen…

You know when you just can’t stop stumbling upon good books? Then you can’t stop buying them? Yes, that has happened to me lately and – to make myself feel guilty and just STOP I’m going to do a post of most of them. So, essentially this is my Book Haul post. And trust me, in the last month there has been a momentous number of books come in to my possession. None of these are particularly works of great literature, but they’re all books I’m quite interested in reading or have just wanted to read for a long while. A full list will be at the bottom but I’m going to do a relatively concise overview of just a few that I’ve bought!

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