So, here I am, ready to make a mark on the world of book blogging, and I did probably the worst thing I could have done.
I Googled ‘How to do a book blog’. Just like a Doctor tells you never to google your symptoms, I was convinced after ten minutes that this was all a waste of time and that I could never do it.
However, having a chance to sit back and look at other peoples blogs, I decided something.
I can do it.
I read all the time, I love recommending books to my friends and hearing how much they loved (or hated them!).
Bear in mind, that all the books featured on this blog will be reviewed positively, as life is too short to struggle with a book I am not enjoying!
However, here are some of the books I have read and loved already this year, before the idea of book blogging even crossed my mind!
Celia Fremlin: The Hours Before Dawn
Published by: Faber & Faber
Buy It here
What The Blurb Says:
Louise would give anything – anything – for a good night’s sleep. Forget the girls running errant in the garden and bothering the neighbours. Forget her husband who seems oblivious to it all. If the baby would just stop crying, everything would be fine.
Or would it? What if Louise’s growing fears about the family’s new lodger, who seems to share all of her husband’s interests, are real? What could she do, and would anyone even believe her? Maybe, if she could get just get some rest, she’d be able to think straight.
In a new edition of this lost classic, The Hours Before Dawn proves – scarily – as relevant to readers today as it was when Celia Fremlin first wrote it in the 1950s.
What I Say:
Celia Fremlin has often been overlooked as she was a forerunner of the psychological thriller which populates many of our bookshelves (including mine!) today.
The Hours Before Dawn is about Louise, a woman who is at home with her three young children, of whom, the youngest, Michael, is unable to sleep through the night. As Louise struggles to cope with the demands of being a mother and wife with no sleep and no time to call her own, a woman called Vera Brandon answers her advert looking for a lodger.
Louise attempts to function in a world where her well being is sacrificed for the needs and demands of everyone else, and a number of unsettling incidents lead her to think that her lodger may not be as innocent as she seems…
I loved this book, as I found it fascinating to see how many issues around a woman’s place in the home, and our expectations of what being a woman in society should be is still sharply in focus today.
Louise’s unrelenting sleep deprivation blurs the line between fantasy and reality seamlessly, and Celia Fremlin’s evocative language meant that I, as a reader start to question what is real and what is imagined. Louise is an engaging and likeable character, and you really feel for her plight as Vera Brandon manipulates and lies her way into the household.
This book is full of tension and twists, and an ending that will knock you off your feet and have you re-reading it.
I really recommend it and I will certainly be looking out for Celia Fremlin novels in the future .
Rowan Coleman – The Summer of Impossible Things
Published by: Ebury Press (Fiction)
Buy it: here
What The Blurb Says:
If you could change the past, would you? This summer, get ready to believe in Impossible Things with the brand new book from international bestseller, Rowan Coleman. Available to pre-order now! How far would you go to save the person you love? Luna is about to do everything she can to save her mother’s life. Even if it means sacrificing her own.
What I say:
I had kept this book on my ever growing TBR pile for a few weeks, because I knew it would be one of those books I would not want to end, and I was right.
To simply say it is a book about a young woman called Luna who discovers she can travel back through time to 1977, does not do Rowan’s book justice. Luna realises her ability to time travel means that she holds the power to prevent an awful event taking place, but that it might ultimately change her whole world and everything she has ever known.
This warm, eloquent and stunning novel deals with so much more, so many themes and ideas that to say too much would be to give the essence of this book away.
It considers ideas such as; what makes us who we are? How can we be sure that time only exists as a linear concept? Faced with an impossible choice, would you risk your own existence and everyone you know to save someone you love?
Rowan has written a book which not only discusses what true love means, but that also, sometimes, the most powerful love you have within, enables you to overcome obstacles you never dreamed you could conquer.
The novel has such evocative descriptions of Bay Ridge in Brooklyn, and also what it mean to be a young woman growing up in 1977. Your heart often had to come second place to the expectations of your famly and the community.
I have loved many of Rowan’s books, (The Memory Book is one of my favourites) but the passion, intelligence and empathy she creates for the characters faced with life changing decisions, elevated this novel to an entirely new level.
I loved it.