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Since all the social distancing measures have been put in place, I’ve been reading so much. I still have a few paperbacks to get through but since making the switch to Kindle most of my books have been Kindle Edition. These are just a few of the books I’ve read and a little mini review of each of them.
I have the Kindle Paperwhite and I love it. I can read in all lights and I can download anything I fancy instantaneously. I might do a review but you can pick up a Kindle Paperwhite from Amazon.
The Two Lives of Lydia Bird – Josie Silver. This book follows Lydia Bird as she tries to pick up the pieces and navigate her life following the devastating loss of her fiance Freddie. The main characters are likeable and it’s quite engaging how Josie Silver has written about grief. The story splits into two just before the halfway mark. One explores what would have happened in Lydia’s life if the crash had not happened, the other is what is actually happening in her life. The chapters are aptly called “awake” and “asleep” and the book alternates between the two. Sometimes it gets confusing if you forget which chapter you’re reading but I like the concept in general. The ending is quite predictable but it was satisfying to see how Lydia eventually found herself as a person in her own right.
You can get the Kindle version of The Two Lives of Lydia Bird for £1.99. Bargain.
Expectation – Anna Hope. Expectation by Anna Hope follows the lives of three women in their thirties. It centres around Lissa, Cate and Hannah. They’re all at different points in their lives and envy what the other has achieved. For example Cate has a child and Hannah is trying to conceive. Meanwhile Cate is envious of Hannah’s seemingly “perfect” marriage. I’ve heard this book described as “raw” and I can get that. It’s not all sunshine and roses, as life isn’t. Having said that, I find most literature like this depicts female friendship in a certain way. Like there always has to be some sort of underlying issue in a friendship to base the plot around and make it authentic? Aside from the cliche way female friendship is portrayed, I found it enjoyable to see how their friendship with each other changed, and how their dealt with their own personal issues. It’s definitely one that I think those in their late twenties or early thirties can relate to. I think it would appeal to anyone of that age that’s concerned with things in their life they haven’t quite “figured out” yet. Buy the Kindle Edition here.
The Neighbours – Nicola Gill. The Neighbours starts with 34 year old Ginny who has lost her job and her boyfriend at the same time. She’s at rock bottom and suddenly her famous neighbour Cassie Frost offers her a job as her PR agent. Cassie is such a fun eccentric character and it’s heartwarming to watch their friendship grow and see Ginny putting her life back together. This book has a lighthearted side in terms of humorous TV appearances and Cassie’s wit, but also a darker side that touches on depression. I find books like this so easy to relate to as I think we can all see a bit of ourselves in Ginny and Cassie. The Kindle Edition is £2.99 so it’s worth it for something lighthearted.
Saving Missy – Beth Morrey. I loved this book. Missy Carmichaels is a rather lonely old lady with a prickly personality. She has family but they’ve moved away and her husband is no longer there. She encounters two women in the park and over time a friendship builds between them. Although the friendship is heartwarming, there is some sadness woven into the book and a bit of a twist at the end. Morrey often refers to Missy’s past in the book and when authors do this I sometimes feel it adds a lot of irrelevant weight. But in Saving Missy all the reflections on her past seemed relevant, from her childhood, to how she met her husband, to the bust-up with her daughter that soured their relationship. I found it a wonderful read and some of the revelations towards the end are heartbreaking. It reminds me of Gran Torino (but without the racism thankfully). Definitely one for those who enjoy characters who can appear difficult but have a soft heart. Kindle Edition – £5.99
Saturdays at Noon – Rachel Marks. Emily and Jake have to attend an anger management class for very different reasons. Emily is very defensive about why she has to attend, and Jake has to attend because he’s a stay at home dad who has a difficult relationship with his son Alfie. I really liked this book because you could understand Jake’s frustration with Alfie which I find is often hard to sympathise with when it comes to having a child as an almost protagonist type character. But also, when Alfie gave his perspective you could understand how he acted in the way he did. Alfie is one of my favourite characters I’ve ever read about. I also thought Emily was a complex character and interesting to read about. One for those who enjoys a plot with eccentric and complex characters. Kindle Edition – £2.99
The 24-Hour Cafe – Libby Page. I’m familiar with Libby Page’s work. I read the Lido last year (you can see my review of the Lido here). The 24-Hour Cafe is somewhat different, focussing on Hannah and Mona, two best friends who work at Stella’s Cafe in London. It’s set over 24-hours and the book is split into two, with the first half told from Hannah’s perspective and the second from Mona’s. Something happens in the first half that alters their friendship, and each speak of events that lead up to it. There are also small chapters interspersed throughout the book that are told from the customers’ perspectives and their background stories. It’s one for those who like people watching and wondering what their stories are, and who like to explore female friendship in a balanced way. Kindle Edition £1.99
Mix Tape – Jane Sanderson. Mix Tape tells the story of Daniel and Alison, two young lovers in Sheffield whose lives take different turns. It is narrated from both Daniel’s and Alison’s perspectives and follows their lives from the past when they were together, to the present day when they are both married to other people with families of their own. Suddenly they reconnect and share songs they used to enjoy. Alison’s backstory in particular is a tearjerker and it’s especially emotional when she reconnected with some characters in her “old” life. It’s definitely a book for those who enjoy a musical reference and a complicated love story. Another available for just £2.99
The Rearranged Life of Oona Lockhart – Margarita Montimore. The Rearranged Life of Oona Lockhart starts with a 19-year-old Oona about to ring in the new year. At midnight she suddenly wakes up at another point in her life. This book is definitely different from anything listed here or anything I’ve read before. It’s not really about friendships or relationships, and yet it is. But it’s much more than that. If you had the ability to go back and change something you had done in the past, would you? Oona visits various points in her life and sees how her actions have affected her present (whatever age she may be when she is having that perception). For example in her older years she’s incredibly wealthy and it’s because of the stocks and shares she invested in, so when she goes back to her younger years she makes a note not to sell certain shares. It’s so interesting and there’s definitely some twists and turns. I recommend if you like science fiction or a book about time travel. 99p for a limited time on Kindle
As you can see, I’ve been reading so much! What are you currently reading? Is there anything from my list that appeals to you?
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