Looking Ahead – This Month’s TBR List (January 2018)

Looking Ahead Banner

I’m linking up again with Tina @ Reading Between the Pages to look ahead at the books I’d like to read in January. My TBR won’t be as ambitious this month as I’ve got an exam I need to revise for and two pieces of coursework I really need to make a start on. Also I’m reading a massive King book, so massive it, in my opinion, counts as three books! Anyway, here’s the hopefuls that may finally make the move from the unread shelf to the read.

Currently Reading…

Under the Dome by Stephen King

under-the-dome-stephen-kingIn UNDER THE DOME, King has produced another riveting masterpiece. The end of every chapter hooks you into the next, drawing you inside a psychological drama that is so rich, you don’t read it, you live it.

It is the story of the small town of Chester’s Mill, Maine which is inexplicably and suddenly sealed off from the rest of the world by an invisible force field. No one can get in and no one can get out.

The normal rules of society are suddenly changed and when food, electricity and water run short, the community begins to crumble. As a new and more sinister social order develops, Dale Barbara, Iraq veteran, teams up with a handful of intrepid citizens to fight against the corruption that is sweeping through the town and to try to discover the source of the Dome before it is too late . . .

Continue reading “Looking Ahead – This Month’s TBR List (January 2018)”

2017 in Books and My Top Books of 2017

My Year in Books 2017

Happy New Year! 2017 was a brilliant year for me, bookishly – so before I dive into the book world of 2018, which I’m very excited for, I thought I’d recap last year in books. Firstly, looking quickly at the stats Goodreads thinks are important and then highlighting some of my standout reads of last year, aka my top ten books!

Total books read

Damn, one more book and I’d have hit the magical 200 mark! Although, I have to be honest, my total books read is slightly lower than this (maybe minus 10 books) because this total counts my DNFs as I mark them as read and give a brief paragraph of why I chose to not finish the book – more as a reminder to myself that I tried this book already so I don’t end up buying it in five years time, thinking it sounds amazing.

Shortest - longest

Continue reading “2017 in Books and My Top Books of 2017”

Book Review: The Last Girl: My Story of Captivity, and My Fight Against the Islamic State by Nadia Murad #nonfictionnovember

The Last Girl - Nadia Murad

*Thanks for the free book, @CrownPublishing; it’s my pleasure to be a part of your monthly book send programme and provide honest reviews for the titles chosen*

As it’s Non-fiction November, I thought it the apt time to read The Last Girl.

From the back cover:

In this intimate memoir of survival, a former captive of the Islamic State tells her harrowing and ultimately inspiring story.

Nadia Murad was born and raised in Kocho, a small village of farmers and shepherds in northern Iraq. A member of the Yazidi community, she and her brothers and sisters lived a quiet life. Nadia had dreams of becoming a history teacher or opening her own beauty salon.

On August 15th, 2014, when Nadia was just twenty-one years old, this life ended. Islamic State militants massacred the people of her village, executing men who refused to convert to Islam and women too old to become sex slaves. Six of Nadia’s brothers were killed, and her mother soon after, their bodies swept into mass graves. Nadia was taken to Mosul and forced, along with thousands of other Yazidi girls, into the ISIS slave trade.

Nadia would be held captive by several militants and repeatedly raped and beaten. Finally, she managed a narrow escape through the streets of Mosul, finding shelter in the home of a Sunni Muslim family whose eldest son risked his life to smuggle her to safety.

Today, Nadia’s story–as a witness to the Islamic State’s brutality, a survivor of rape, a refugee, a Yazidi–has forced the world to pay attention to the ongoing genocide in Iraq. It is a call to action, a testament to the human will to survive, and a love letter to a lost country, a fragile community, and a family torn apart by war. Continue reading “Book Review: The Last Girl: My Story of Captivity, and My Fight Against the Islamic State by Nadia Murad #nonfictionnovember”

Book Review: American Wolf: A True Story of Survival and Obsession in the West by Nate Blakeslee #nonfiction

American Wolf - Nate Blakeslee

Some books you should never leave sitting on the shelf – when Crown Publishing offered to send me a copy of American Wolf to review, two months passed before I finally picked it up. I gave myself a good telling off for not reading this five-star non-fiction book immediately.

Book Description:

The enthralling story of the rise and reign of O-Six, the celebrated Yellowstone wolf, and the people who loved or feared her

Before men ruled the earth, there were wolves. Once abundant in North America, these majestic creatures were hunted to near extinction in the lower 48 states by the 1920s. But in recent decades, conservationists have brought wolves back to the Rockies, igniting a battle over the very soul of the West.

With novelistic detail, Nate Blakeslee tells the gripping story of one of these wolves, O-Six, a charismatic alpha female named for the year of her birth. Uncommonly powerful, with gray fur and faint black ovals around each eye, O-Six is a kind and merciful leader, a fiercely intelligent fighter, and a doting mother. She is beloved by wolf watchers, particularly renowned naturalist Rick McIntyre, and becomes something of a social media star, with followers around the world.

But as she raises her pups and protects her pack, O-Six is challenged on all fronts: by hunters, who compete with wolves for the elk they both prize; by cattle ranchers who are losing livestock and have the ear of politicians; and by other Yellowstone wolves who are vying for control of the park’s stunningly beautiful Lamar Valley.

These forces collide in American Wolf, a riveting multigenerational saga of hardship and triumph that tells a larger story about the ongoing cultural clash in the West–between those fighting for a vanishing way of life and those committed to restoring one of the country’s most iconic landscapes.

Publication date: 17 October 2017 Continue reading “Book Review: American Wolf: A True Story of Survival and Obsession in the West by Nate Blakeslee #nonfiction”