Monday, 28 November 2011

It's Monday. What are you reading? 28 Nov 11

It's Monday. What are you Reading? is a weekly meme hosted by Book Journey to outline what you have been reading and what you plan to read this week.

Last week I finished Affinity (Sarah Waters) and you can check out my review here. And after a few comments on my last Monday meme post I decided to start Angela's Ashes for this week and I'm really enjoying it! In fact I wish I didn't have to work so I could keep reading it but sadly my reading life can't take precedence, although I often wish it could ;)

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Affinity (Sarah Waters)

Title: Affinity
Author: Sarah Waters
Publisher: Virago Press
Publication Date: 2000
Pages: 352
Source: Book club borrowed
Genre: Mystery, Gothic
Goodreads | |

I picked Affinity up at my book club because my friend enjoys the author and recommended I give it a go. It didn't sound like the normal sort of book I like but I always think it's good to branch out now and then.

Set in the 1870s, Affinity tells the story of an upper class woman who begins visiting a women's prison for rehabilitation after a suicide attempt. While there she meets Selina, a spiritualist, and a unique relationship forms, leading her to risk everything.

This was one of the books where my feelings about it went up and down. At the beginning of the book I loved the Gothic feel of the novel, the descriptions of the prison and the mystery surrounding the characters. It had me intrigued. And then throughout the middle of the book there were parts that seemed to just drag on and on and many of the sections surrounding the main characters relationship with Selina just grated with me. And then the author would throw in another back story or tidbit and I'd be interested again. I liked it, I didn't like it, I liked it, I didn't like it. I couldn't make my mind up. I did think that the ending was really well done and helped make this whole book come together for me. But I'm still not sure if it was enough for me to really like this book.

So all in all I'm torn. I think this is where my standard reviewing thumbs up or thumbs down feature really falls down! For me it really was just middle of the road O.K. I guess I'll leave it at that then.

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Bookish Gifts

I absolutely adore this book inspired art availabe at

Pick your favourite story and see it come to life as art with the actually text from the book being used to create a scene from the story.

And if they don't have your favourite you can request it! Such a great idea.

These are a few of my own favourites

Alice in Wonderland
Jane Eyre
Grimms' Fairy Tales
Anne of Green Gables
Moby Dick
All images obtained from

Monday, 21 November 2011

It's Monday. What are you reading? 21 Nov 2011

It's Monday. What are you Reading? is a weekly meme hosted by Book Journey to outline what you have been reading and what you plan to read this week.

Last week I posted my review for The Housekeeper and The Professor (Yoko Ogawa) and I also signed myself up for two 2012 challenges (my first ones as a blogger!) which are the Back to the Classics and the Mixing It Up Challenge both of which will allow me to get through a whole lot of my own 100 must-read books and also clear a few off my bookshelf too.

At the moment I'm reading Affinity (Sarah Waters) which is something a bit different for me but I always like to branch out of the norm once in a while. Should be finished that one pretty soon and then I'm not sure on the next one... I'm thinking maybe Botswana Time or maybe Angelas Ashes. I'll see how I feel at the time.

Friday, 18 November 2011

2012 Challenges

So far I haven't been interested in participating in any blog community challenges. Mainly because I like the idea of being able to pick out whatever I feel like reading at the time, not because I feel like I have to read something.

But two challenges have come to my attention that just sound too good not to participate in them. So I've decided to take on these two as my first EVER blog community challenges! Yay how exciting!

The first is Back to the Classics Challenge 2012 hosted by Sarah Reads Too Much. Now this one should be pretty self explanatory. Most of you would have seen my own personal 100 Book Challenge list and know how fond I am of reading classic literature. So it seems this challenge was made for me! Essentially I'm going to do my best to fit some books from my own challenge list into the assigned categories. This will really help make some progress on those must read books!

The second is the Mixing It Up Challenge 2012 hosted by Musings of a Bookshop Girl. This one appeals simply because I love the idea of branching out and trying different genres. For this challenge you can decide what level you want to do so I originally thought I would only do a few because I really didn't like the idea of attempting Horror but you know what? the point of this is to challenge myself so I'm going to do the whole kit and caboodle! Yep that's right all 16 categories! Oh sheesh what am I getting myself into?!

So I will post my full challenge lists very soon, I've just got to spend a little time working out exactly which books I want to put into each category. I'll keep you posted!

Back to the Classics Challenge 2012


As I mentioned before I've decided to do a couple of challenges for the first time. Back to the Classics is the PERFECT challenge for me as I'm already trying to read a number of classics as part of my 100 must-read book challenge that i set myself. So it'll be great to read some of the all time greats.

I've listed a couple of options for each just in case I can't get ahold of a particular book easily.

This will be my main post throughout the year for this challenge and I will update it along the way with all the books I read for the challenge.

Any 19th Century Classic
Great Expectations (Charles Dickens)

Any 20th Century Classic
1984 (George Orwell)

Reread a classic of your choice
The Hobbit (JRR Tolkien)
(I read The Hobbit before when I was about 12 but I remember so little of it I want to read it again)

A Classic Play
Hamlet (William Shakespeare)

Classic Mystery/Horror/Crime Fiction
This is the most difficult for me. Maybe something by Edgar Allan Poe? - Suggestions welcome!

Classic Romance 
Emma (Jane Austen)
Gone with the Wind (Margaret Mitchell)
Wuthering Heights (Emily Brontë)

Read a Classic that has been translated from its original language
One Hundred Years Of Solitude (Gabriel García Márquez)
The Three Musketeers (Alexandre Dumas)

Classic Award Winner
Animal Farm (George Orwell)

Read a Classic set in a Country that you will not visit during your lifetime
Love In The Time Of Cholera (Gabriel García Márquez) - Columbia
The Kite Runner (Khaled Hosseini)  - Afghanistan