I’ve been a bad blogger these last few months, and a fairly bad reader too! I think it’s been that time of year when I’m just not really in the mood for anything much! But now it’s Spring and my mind always turns to clearing out and sprucing up, and I have a few changes planned for the blog. Which is quite ridiculous as I never seem able to keep up a regular schedule for more than a couple of weeks! But if at first you don’t succeed and all that …
Anyway, over the last three months I’ve read 14 books. Which isn’t too bad to be honest. I’m still 3 books ahead on my Goodreads challenge of 52 books for the year, so all is well. Here’s a look at what I read in February, March and April.
In February I read a total of 7 books. I started the month with In A Land of Paper Gods by Rebecca Mackenzie, which I received for review via bookbridgr. Unfortunately, this novel wasn’t for me. My full review is here, and I gave this 2 stars. Next up was Signs Preceding the End of the World by Yuri Herrera, translated by Lisa Dillman. I was really looking forward to this one, but in the end I felt like I was missing something and it didn’t live up to my expectation. 3 stars, and you can read my full review here. A short story collection was up next, How to Breathe Underwater by Julie Orringer. I enjoyed this quite melancholic collection and reviewed it here. This one got 4 stars. The Girl in the Red Coat by Kate Hamer was next, and also received 4 stars. I enjoyed this unusual take on the ‘missing child’ story. (Review here). Then came my most disappointing read of the month, Death of a Prima Donna by Brina Svit, translated by Peter Constantine. Another 2 stars, sadly, and my review is here. Luckily, This Must Be The Place by Maggie O’Farrell came next! This was another copy I received for review from the publisher, Tinder Press. This one is released later this month, so my review will be up soon, but I absolutely loved every single word and gave it 5 stars! The month ended with A Lovely Way to Burn by Louise Welsh, this was fine, I enjoyed it, it was a quick easy read and I gave it 3 stars (review here).
I only managed 3 books in March, and was on a bit of a true crime kick! I began with Life After Death: Eighteen Years on Death Row by Damien Echols. I knew nothing about this story and while I of course felt empathy for the writer, this just didn’t quite hit the mark for me. I gave this 2 stars (review here). Getting Life: An Innocent Man’s 25-year Journey from Prison to Peace by Michael Morton, however, had a totally different feel and was my favourite book of the month. This was fascinating – my review is here. 5 stars. Back to fiction for the last book of the month, I read Descent by Tim Johnston. This was a really well written crime novel in a fantastic setting and I’ll have a review up soon. 4 stars.
In April I managed 4 books. I continued on my true crime spree with Helter Skelter by Vincent Bugliosi, an absolutely fascinating account of the Manson murder trial about which I knew very little. So well written and so interesting, a very high 4 stars! After the trauma of this one, I needed some light escapism and I picked up Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen. This was exactly what I need, a fun, light, quick read with an interesting plot and good, strong female protagonist. 3 stars. More crime after that, Natural Causes by James Oswald, the first in a new-to-me crime series. Enjoyable with some aspects that I really liked – more about this my eventual review! 3 stars. And finally, I wrapped up April with a nice little gentle read … A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara. Goodness me this was a heart wrencher, just like everyone said. My review of this will be up in a few weeks, but I gave it 3 stars and had some issues with it, but overall I’m glad I read it and it didn’t take me as long to get through as I was expecting.
So that’s the reading wrap up! As for films and TV shows, we haven’t been watching very much at all.
In February, we watched Ex Machina, directed by Alex Garland (he who wrote The Beach) and starring Alicia Vikander as the AI girl and Domhnal Gleeson as a somewhat gormless geek. This was actually a really interesting film that hubby and I both were surprised to enjoy so much. I gave this 7/10 and hubby’s score was 7.25 (don’t ask!) out of 10. Also in February we watched Chef, a really lovely movie written by, directed by and starring Jon Favreau. I wasn’t expecting much from this, but it was funny and heartwarming and made me hungry! 8/10 from me and 8.5/10 from Dave. I then fell into a bit of a Walking Dead hole and became obsessed with Andrew Lincoln. We’ll move swiftly on.
In March we binge watched Broadchurch series 1 and 2 with our 17 year old daughter. We all really enjoyed this series and couldn’t wait to watch the next episode. Great British drama! Series 1: 9/10 from me, 8/10 from Dave. Series 2: 8/10 from me and 7/10 from Dave.
More fabulous British drama came in April with the return of Line of Duty, one of my favourite police series. This series did not disappoint – the only bad thing was having to wait a whole week for the next episode! Fantastic, edge of the seat viewing. 9/10 from me and 8.5/10 from Dave.
And that is 3 months wrapped up in a few paragraphs.
Let me know if you’ve read/watched any of these and what you thought!