The Universe of Us, by Lang Leav.
I actually bought this book on January 29th, and read it in one sitting, but I had already drafted up my Read In January post ready for the next day, so I decided to just include it in this month's post instead. I love Lang's poetry so much. I've already read her books Love & Misadventure and Lullabies - I even bought them both brand new, that's how much I admire her! I think Lang's books are a good place to start if you're just getting into poetry, as her poems are very short and sweet.
The Granny, by Brendan O'Carroll.
After falling in love with the show Mrs. Brown's Boys, I bought all 3 seasons and the Christmas specials. I also read a biography about the creator Brendan O'Carroll, which really opened my eyes to what a great person he is. I learnt from that biography that Mrs. Brown's Boys was a trilogy of books before it was a TV show (and it was actually a radio play before it was a series of books), so I kept my eye out for the books.
Since then, I have slowly found and read all three, and discovered that they're quite different from the show. They're far more serious, the family's last name is spelt Browne, there's two more sons, and Agnes has a boyfriend (there's a lot more differences than that, but you get the picture). The Granny is the last book in the series, and definitely the saddest and most serious of them all. All the characters go through some sort of development and you end up becoming quite attached to them after reading about them growing up and dealing with life's punches. I definitely recommend these books, but if you've seen the show, I'd suggest trying to forget everything you know, because these stories are a lot different.
All The Bright Places, by Jennifer Niven.
This was a book that I bought and started reading without doing any research into it (like most books I read), other than reading the blurb, so it continued to surprised me as I read it. Even though in the back of my mind, I was thinking that it might end a certain way, I was still absolutely floored when it actually did end that way. It was such an emotional read that really tugged at my heart strings. I actually started tearing up reading Jennifer's author note about how mental health issues have always been apart of her life, as I know that feeling far too well. I think she did a great job bringing some of those issues to light with this book.
The Crucible, by Arthur Miller.
I actually lost the page I was up to whilst reading this, causing me to put it down for a week and pick up another book until I could be bothered to find my page again. I definitely think this hindered my overall outlook on this book, as I was distracted and a little confused by the time I started reading it again. Mostly, though, I just couldn't believe that something like this actually happened in our world - but it did. I'm certainly going to look into the witch hunts in Salem and learn more about it. It's such a baffling part of our history and I really want to try and wrap my head around it.
The F Word, by Jane Caro & Catherine Fox.
I picked this book up thinking it was about Gordon Ramsay, but I was even more delighted when I discovered it was about feminism. I could read a million books on feminism and not get bored. It's very interesting hearing people's stories, opinions and ideas. The F Word was mostly focused on what it's like for women in the workforce today - particularly in office and corporate related jobs - and what it's like to juggle work and motherhood (I'll give you a hint: it's not easy). Whilst these topics are not relevant to me at the moment, and probably never will be, it was still interesting to read about the ways sexism is incorporated into women's everyday lives, and things to look out for that you might not perceive as rude or sexist at first.
I honestly thought this book was going to be very one-sided, and that the authors were only going to talk about the things that they want to change in their own lives, but I was pleasantly surprised that they addressed women from all over the world, and the fact that they - the authors - are very privileged and do live comfortable lives, because self awareness is important. I think Jane and Catherine did a good job in covering a lot of different issues in not too many pages, but of course, feminism can't be summed up within a few hundred pages, which is why there are still so many people out there writing books about it.
Why We Broke Up, by Daniel Handler.
I love the format of this book. The story is told through a series of objects that each represent a memory and Min, the main character, is writing out all the memories behind each object in a letter to her ex-boyfriend Ed, explaining why they broke up. Ed was a horrible person and I never trusted him. I wouldn't say this book was anything amazing, but it wasn't bad. There were a lot of moments when Min rambled on, which got a little boring - and even confusing - at times, but other than that it was a quick and easy read, which I always like. I really do like the format too, I'll have to keep my eyes out for more books that are written in a similar way.
What have you been reading this month? Anything that particularly stood out to you?
Until next time,