Reading is one of my favourite past times and whilst I love reading at night on my phone before I fall asleep, there is something enthralling about holding a physical book in your hand and getting lost in the pages. When I was younger, before the Kindles and the iPhones, books were all I had and I loved to read more than anything and I would read absolutely everything. Instead of just picking up books casually as I stumble through 2017, I wanted to make an effort to read all the books that not only have been sitting on my desk lonely and waiting but also have been recommended to me or have been on my radar for quite some time. If you want to find some good books to fall into next year, please keep reading. There is a nice selection of fiction, non-fiction, contemporary and spiritual.
THE GIRLS | I heard this was loosely based on the Manson Family and have since Googled the Manson Family which only led me to ask more questions. I am not sure I fully understand. It seems Charles Manson was a batshit cult leader who killed people and yet still was revered by many. He was on the cover of Rolling Stone and friends with The Beach Boys! What? So I need to read this.
BLURB: Northern California, during the violent end of the 1960s. At the start of summer, a lonely and thoughtful teenager, Evie Boyd, sees a group of girls in the park, and is immediately caught by their freedom, their careless dress, their dangerous aura of abandon. Soon, Evie is in thrall to Suzanne, a mesmerizing older girl, and is drawn into the circle of a soon-to-be infamous cult and the man who is its charismatic leader. Hidden in the hills, their sprawling ranch is eerie and run down, but to Evie, it is exotic, thrilling, charged—a place where she feels desperate to be accepted. As she spends more time away from her mother and the rhythms of her daily life, and as her obsession with Suzanne intensifies, Evie does not realize she is coming closer and closer to unthinkable violence, and to that moment in a girl’s life when everything can go horribly wrong.
FACE PAINT | I have had this book for over a year and although I have stared at the pictures I have yet to actually read it. Lisa Eldridge is one of the best makeup artists in the world so have to read this.
BLURB: Makeup, as we know it, has only been commercially available in the last 100 years, but applying decoration to the face and body may be one of the oldest global social practices. In Face Paint, Lisa Eldridge reveals the entire history of the art form, from Egyptian and Classical times up through the Victorian age and golden era of Hollywood, and also surveys the cutting-edge makeup science of today and tomorrow. Face Paint explores the practical and idiosyncratic reasons behind makeup’s use, the actual materials employed over generations, and the glamorous icons that people emulate and how they achieved their effects. An engaging history of style, it is also a social history of women and the ways in which we can understand their lives through the prism and impact of makeup.
UNBEARABLE LIGHTNESS OF BEING | Another book that I have downloaded and haven't actually read. Carli Bybel mentioned this on her channel and I have seen it included in many lists of books that should be read. I am hoping this will be one of those life-changing books that alter your perspective and make you feel stronger. I do want to transform my life so hope this book works.
BLURB: In The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Milan Kundera tells the story of a young woman in love with a man torn between his love for her and his incorrigible womanizing and one of his mistresses and her humbly faithful lover. This magnificent novel juxtaposes geographically distant places, brilliant and playful reflections, and a variety of styles to take its place as perhaps the major achievement of one of the world’s truly great writers.
MIRACLE MORNING | I think if I somehow managed to become a morning person I would be a better person. I always feel rushed and usually spend my whole day dreaming of my bed. I think this would be a great book to help me form new, better habits that will increase my energy and make me more productive.
BLURB: What if you could miraculously wake up tomorrow and any—or every area of your life was transformed? What would be different? Would you be happier? Healthier? More successful? In better shape? Would you have more energy? Less Stress? More Money? Better relationships? Which of your problems would be solved? What if I told you that there is a "not-so-obvious" secret that is guaranteed to transform any—or literally every area of your life, faster than you ever thought possible? What if I told you it would only take 6 minutes a day? Enter The Miracle Morning. What’s now being practiced by thousands of people around the world could perhaps be the simplest approach to creating the life you’ve always wanted. It’s been right there in front of us, but this book has finally brought it to life. Are you ready? The next chapter of your life—the most extraordinary life you've ever imagined—is about to begin. YOU DESERVE AN EXTRAORDINARY LIFE. IT’S TIME TO WAKE UP TO YOUR FULL POTENTIAL.
THE ALCHEMIST | My sister recommended this book to me and I asked her what it was about just now. Her answer: "A little boy, just read it". Sorry, I don't have more to share with you on this one. Even the blurb doesn't give too much away, honestly the blurb doesn't appeal to me but my sister is adamant that I read it so I am going to trust her and read this as soon as possible. It's not very long.
BLURB: Paulo Coelho's enchanting novel has inspired a devoted following around the world. This story, dazzling in its powerful simplicity and inspiring wisdom, is about an Andalusian shepherd boy named Santiago who travels from his homeland in Spain to the Egyptian desert in search of a treasure buried in the Pyramids. Along the way he meets a Gypsy woman, a man who calls himself king, and an alchemist, all of whom point Santiago in the direction of his quest. No one knows what the treasure is, or if Santiago will be able to surmount the obstacles along the way. But what starts out as a journey to find worldly goods turns into a discovery of the treasure found within. Lush, evocative, and deeply humane, the story of Santiago is an eternal testament to the transforming power of our dreams and the importance of listening to our hearts.
THE WIDOW | This was compared to Gone Girl which I really enjoyed reading. Love the film too.
BLURB: When the police started asking questions, Jean Taylor turned into a different woman. One who enabled her and her husband to carry on, when more bad things began to happen...But that woman’s husband died last week. And Jean doesn’t have to be her anymore.There’s a lot Jean hasn’t said over the years about the crime her husband was suspected of committing. She was too busy being the perfect wife, standing by her man while living with the accusing glares and the anonymous harassment. Now there’s no reason to stay quiet. There are people who want to hear her story. They want to know what it was like living with that man. She can tell them that there were secrets. There always are in a marriage. The truth—that’s all anyone wants. But the one lesson Jean has learned in the last few years is that she can make people believe anything…
FURIOUSLY HAPPY | From what I can tell and what initially made me take notice about this book is that it is a funny book about sad things, like the tagline says. Bad things and shitty situations are all a part of life and if there is a book out there that can make it feel not so bad then I'm going to read it.
BLURB: In her new book, FURIOUSLY HAPPY, Jenny explores her lifelong battle with mental illness. A hysterical, ridiculous book about crippling depression and anxiety? That sounds like a terrible idea. And terrible ideas are what Jenny does best. According to Jenny: "Some people might think that being 'furiously happy' is just an excuse to be stupid and irresponsible and invite a herd of kangaroos over to your house without telling your husband first because you suspect he would say no since he's never particularly liked kangaroos. And that would be ridiculous because no one would invite a herd of kangaroos into their house. Two is the limit. I speak from personal experience. My husband says that none is the new limit. I say he should have been clearer about that before I rented all those kangaroos." "Most of my favorite people are dangerously fucked-up but you'd never guess because we've learned to bare it so honestly that it becomes the new normal. Like John Hughes wrote in The Breakfast Club, 'We're all pretty bizarre. Some of us are just better at hiding it.' Except go back and cross out the word 'hiding.'"
SEX OBJECT | Sometimes being a woman sucks and a lot of that has to do with sexism and the unfairness of periods as well as much more. I want to learn more about my gender and society in relation to my gender and this seems like the perfect book to open my eyes to things I have missed.
BLURB: A darkly funny and bracing memoir, Valenti explores the toll that sexism takes from the every day to the existential. Sex Object explores the painful, funny, embarrassing, and sometimes illegal moments that shaped Valenti’s adolescence and young adulthood in New York City, revealing a much shakier inner life than the confident persona she has cultivated as one of the most recognizable feminists of her generation.
THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN | I haven't seen the film yet and my boss gifted me the book so firstly I miss reading physical books and secondly omg what the hell happened? I must know. Plus, if Emily Blunt is in the movie, it must be a good story. Cannot wait to dive into this one.
BLURB: EVERY DAY THE SAME - Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning and night. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. Jess and Jason, she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost. UNTIL TODAY - And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel goes to the police. But is she really as unreliable as they say? Soon she is deeply entangled not only in the investigation but in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good?
THE COUPLE NEXT DOOR | I fully believe that "people are almost capable of anything" and if you haven't realised by now I am a sucker for a psychological thriller. They are my favourite. This story sounds fantastic and heartbreaking all at the same time. A missing six month old, I can feel the tears.
BLURB: You never know what's happening on the other side of the wall. Your neighbour told you that she didn't want your six-month-old daughter at the dinner party. Nothing personal, she just couldn't stand her crying. Your husband said it would be fine. After all, you only live next door. You'll have the baby monitor and you'll take it in turns to go back every half hour. Your daughter was sleeping when you checked on her last. But now, as you race up the stairs in your deathly quiet house, your worst fears are realized. She's gone. You've never had to call the police before. But now they're in your home, and who knows what they'll find there. What would you be capable of, when pushed past your limit?
Thank you for reading, let me know if you guys would actually like any book reviews and if you have read any of these for yourself? I do love to read so any recommendations are welcome. I am still in America right now so again please follow me on Bloglovin' to stay up to date I have worked my ass off to keep posting every other day so it would mean a lot to me. Thank you! Take care.
Have you read any of these, and if not what is your favourite book?