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image After Before by Jemma Wayne

This book gripped me from the start. It tells the story of three women from totally different backgrounds and how their lives intertwine. The writing really made you feel a connection to the characters and want the best for them all. It’s not the sort of book that keeps you guessing  right to the end but it is well written and a fantastic read.
imageWhite Lies by Jo Gatford

I didn’t get into this book right away. It has a bit of a slow start and I didn’t really connect with the characters. The book follows a man whose mother has been missing since the day he was born and whose father is now in a care home suffering from dementia. The story picked up for the middle section and although I didn’t really like any of the characters, I was intrigued to find out what was going to happen. However, I was pretty disappointed by the grand reveal and I felt that it just ended without fully tying up the story. I am glad I read this book but it definitely won’t be one I remember in a few books time.
image Charm Offensive by William Thacker

This book is written in a strange style. It feels very disjointed and I didn’t feel like I really got to know any of the characters all that well. It is about an ex politician who is trying to rebuild his life – he has fallen from grace, spilt up with his wife and has a daughter who he never really sees. I didn’t get drawn into the story at all and I am sorry to say that it is the first book I have read in a long time which I haven’t got to the end of. My bookmark is still in place and I do plan to pick it up again at some point, I just have so many books to read right now that I would prefer to read one I really enjoy.
imageDark Places by Gillian Flynn

I read this book so quickly, I literally couldn’t put it down. It was so much better than Gone Girl which took me ages to get into and then disappointed me at the end. Dark Places is about a girl who survives the night that her mum and sisters are killed, supposedly by her own brother. Throughout the book there are flashbacks to that night and Libby starts to question everything she remembers. I was kept guessing to the very end! This book has made me want to read more by Gillian Flynn.
image Agnes Grey by Anne Bronte

Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte is one of my favourite books but I have never actually read anything by Anne. I had this fancy looking book for Christmas with a novel by each of the Bronte sisters (the edges of the pages are gold!). Agnes Grey wasn’t as good as Wuthering Heights but it was still an enjoyable read, although it was quite obvious from near the start what was going to happen! I love reading books about rich people living in humongous manor houses and traveling around in horse drawn carriages, so even though it wasn’t the most exciting storyline I did still enjoy reading it!

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The Summer We All Ran Away

The Summer We All Ran Away by Cassandra Parkin is one of the best books I’ve read this summer!  Recently I seem to have been reading a lot of quite samey books which has got a little boring. I think it’s because I now have a Kindle so every time I go on Amazon, I get recommended the same sort of books as ones I’ve bought previously.  This one though is quite unique.  The Summer We All Ran Away by Cassandra Parkin The Summer We All Ran Away by Cassandra ParkinThe story centers around a teenage boy who has run away from home but also jumps back thirty years to tell the story of a rock star.  It keeps you guessing what the connection is between all the characters and it moves at a good pace.  I look forward to reading more books by Cassandra Parkin!

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Book List #12

More Than Just A Coincidence by Julie Wassmer

This book is a true story which from the blurb sounds quite exciting. Unfortunately, the story was told much too slowly so I didn’t really enjoy it.

 
 
 
 

Yesterday’s Sun by Amanda Brooke

I liked this book when I read it but looking back to write this I couldn’t really remember what had happened which probably means it wasn’t that great…

 
 
 

Unsuitable Men by Pippa Wright

You can probably guess what this book is about from the title – a women who has no luck with “suitable” men decides to date “unsuitable” men to have more fun. It was so predictable but still a good read.

 
 

The Secrets Between Us by Louise Douglas

I thought this was a great book. It’s a mixture of romance and mystery and keeps you guessing right up to the end.

 
 
 

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

This is the second book in The Hunger Games trilogy. I thought it was brilliant.
 
 
 
 
 

The Thread by Victoria Hislop

I’ve read a few books by Victoria Hislop now. I liked this one but don’t think it is as good as the first book I read by her – The Island.

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Book List #11

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

I didn’t think that this was going to be my sort of book and only read it because everyone was talking about it. Turns out I was wrong – I loved it! It’s a proper page turner and is really easy to get into.

 

 

The End Of Everything by Megan Abbott

I read lots of good reviews about this book but I didn’t enjoy it that much. I thought it was a bit slow and didn’t really want to pick it up to read, I only really read it so that I could get onto my next book!

 

 

Someone To Watch Over Me by Izzy Hammond

I borrowed this off one of the girls I met in Thailand when I ran out of books. It’s a true story about a girl who was abused by her parents which isn’t the sort of book I’d usually choose. It’s really depressing and there are some horrible scenes.

 

 

Sing You Home by Jodi Picoult

Another great read from Jodi Picoult. Not quite as good as others I’ve read by her but still worth reading.

 

 

 

Touching Earth by Rani Manicka

This book surprised me. I thought it was going to be another easy to read beach book but it was much better. There were lots of layers to the story and was darker than you would think from the cover!

 

 

Me Before You by Jojo Moyles

I liked the main characters in this book and wanted everything to work out for them. It made me want to keep reading – I really liked this book.

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Book List #10

The Patchwork Marriage by Jane Green

I read this book one Sunday after finishing my exams when I didn’t have much to do. I really enjoyed it and would definitely recommend it.

 
 
 
 

A Single Man by Isherwood

I saw the film with Colin Firth a few months before reading the book and I found it so boring and put off reading the book for ages! The book is more about emotions than action which is, I think, why the film was a little slow. I loved the book!

 
 

The Sealed Letter by Emma Donoghue

I picked up this book after reading Room but I didn’t enjoy this one anywhere near as much. It was very slow in parts and I didn’t like any of the characters so didn’t really care about what happened.

 
 
 

Catching The Sun by Tony Parsons

This book is set in Thailand and I read it just before I went. It was fast paced and really made you want to visit Thailand but there was also a darker thread to the story.

 
 
 

The Good Father by Diane Chamberlain

I read The Midwife’s Confession by Diane Chamberlain last year and though it was fantastic. The Good Father was ok, not as good as The Midwife’s Confession though and quite predictable.

 
 
 

The Other Side of the Story by Marian Keyes

I can’t really remember all that much about the storyline of this book! I read it while I was in Greece and it was definitely your typical beach book – good at the time but not all that memorable.

 
 
 

The Ice Cream Girls by Dorothy Koomson

I always enjoy Dorothy Koomson books and this one was no different – a great read, it didn’t disappoint.

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Book List #9

Started Early, Took My Dog by Kate Atkinson

This book was weird but brilliant. You can’t help but want to keep reading!

 
 
 
 
 

The King’s General by Daphne Du Maurier

Daphne De Maurier is one of my favourite authors but I was really disappointed by this book. I think there was a bit too much fighting in it for me! I actually read another book halfway through this one as I needed a break!

 
 

Goodbye to Berlin by Isherwood

I enjoyed this book but it was a bit of an odd structure. It was almost like a collection of short stories as some characters seemed to completely vanish from the story!

 
 
 

The Midwife of Venice by Roberta Rich

I loved this book – the story moves really quickly and you want everything to work out for the main character, the midwife.

 
 
 
 

The Girl Who Played With Fire by Stieg Larsson

I was looking forward to this after reading the first in the trilogy, The Girl With The Dragon Tatoo. Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy this anywhere near as much. Parts of the book were very slow, especially in the middle section but it did pick up towards the end.

 
 

The Folly of French Kissing by Carla McKay

This book was a perfect summer read. You can read my full review here.

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Book List #8

Before I Go To Sleep by SJ Watson

This book is a real page turner and keeps you guessing until the end. It’s about a woman who has lost her short term memory so when she goes to sleep she forgets everything that has happened that day. This means that there are some parts towards the start which are quite repetitive but if you can get past that it’s a really good book!

 

The Woman He Loved Before by Dorothy Koomson

I always enjoy Dorothy Koomson books. Like the others I’ve read, this is a great read, quick and easy but unfortunately not all that memorable. If you’ve liked Dorothy Koomson books in the past then you’ll definitely enjoy this one.

 
 

All We Ever Wanted Was Everything by Janelle Brown

I didn’t really like this book. It was readable but not the sort of book I particularly looked forward to picking up. I think it might have been because I didn’t actually like any of the characters.

 
 
 

Staying At Daisy’s, Good at Games and Falling for You by Jill Mansell

I’m going to cheat a little here and list three books together. My sister picked these up in a charity shop and they were the perfect was to get through a difficult bit of dissertation writing – 50 minutes work and then a 10 minute reading break. Jill Mansell books are really easy to get into even if they are all pretty much based around the same story line (these three were at least) of a girl meeting a boy, falling in love and eventually living happily ever after. But that’s nice to read about sometimes isn’t it?!

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Book List #7

So, I’ve finally got around to posting my first book list of the year!  I read these all the way back in January…..

The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver

This book was brilliant.  I like books which are kind of based on historical events by are actually fiction (does that make sense!) and I learned lots from this book.  I also thought it was a good length as I hate it when you get a good book that is really short and you don’t want to read it because you don’t want it to end!

 

Mr Norris Changes Trains by Isherwood

From reading the back cover this doesn’t sound like it’s going to be great but it actually surprised me and I really got into it.  I had a few books by Isherwood for Christmas so look out for them in future book lists!

 
 
 

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy by John le Carre

I really, really wanted to like this book but I just didn’t get it.  There seemed to be too many characters and I didn’t really follow the plot.  To be honest, I’m not entirely sure I know what happened in the end!  Maybe I should watch the film instead?!

 
 
 

Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger

I loved The Time Travelers Wife and this book was just as good, if a bit odd! There are a few twists in this which I wasn’t expecting so I’d definitely recommend it.
Has anyone read any of these? What did you think of them?

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Book List #6

The Girl on the Landing by Paul Torday
You can read my review here.










Mrs Dalloway by Virginia Woolf
I think this may have been the most boring book I’ve ever read!










When God Was A Rabbit by Sarah Winman
I enjoyed this – it’s written in quite an unusual style and has a few twists. I like the cover too!








Snow Drops by A.D. Miller
This was a tiny bit predictable but still a great read.










One Day by David Nicholls
You’ve probably read enough reviews by now so don’t need me to tell you that this is a fantastic book!








The Night Before Christmas by Scarlett Bailey
Brilliant Christmas book! It really got me feeling Christmassy (although I did find loads of typos!).









So that’s all the books I read in 2011 (Book List #1 to #6). The first of the 2012 lists won’t be up until I’ve read a few more books!

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Book List #5

The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
To begin with I thought this was a bit slow but it turns into a brilliant, fast paced story which I couldn’t put down.








The Midwife’s Confession by Diane Chamberlain
This is a fantastic book – read my review here.










The Legacy by Kirsten Tranter
Some parts of this book were really good but I thought some bits were a tad slow.








Enigma by Robert Harris
My dad recommended this book to me (because of my university course!) and I loved it. I don’t think you need to be doing a maths subject to enjoy it though (my dad liked it too)!








Midwife on Call by Agnes Light
I kept on reading this thinking it would get better but it didn’t. It felt like I was reading about a woman bragging about how good a midwife she was.








The Good Soldier by Ford Maddox Ford
It took me a while to get into this but once I did I really liked it.










Far From The Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy
I really loved this!

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