Recent Reads #1

Wednesday 25 March 2015

Things have been a bit quiet here recently, but that's okay! Here I am again, writing nonsense just because...This time it's all about books!

I'm pretty impressed with how my reading is going so far in 2015. I never gave myself a specific goal in regards to reading, just to "read more" & I feel like I've been doing just that. Mainly on the Kindle App on my phone though, which is slightly annoying.

I don't own a Kindle, purely because I enjoy holding a solid book, and turning pages, and seeing how well read & lovingly worn a favourite book can get. But sometimes it's just 10x easier to download a book to my phone, to read on the train if I've forgotten one, or if I don't have the patience & just can't wait that extra few days to have one delivered because I want to read it immediately. Something that happens far too often, now that I think about it.

But, the thing is, I find that even if I've read it on my phone, I also really want to have it in paperback form too. I love the idea of (whenever I have my own place) having shelves upon shelves of books, which isn't exactly possible with downloads. Ideally I'll have my own beautiful library. Many thanks to Pinterest for this dream, I mean just look at some of these!

Anyway, this means that I'll probably end up spending more money buying physical copies of the ones I've downloaded. I just love books okay, they're so much better than downloads!

Here are some of my favourites that I've finished recently:

The Mistborn Trilogy - Brandon Sanderson

Image courtesy of Amazon.

I'm nearly ashamed of how quickly I got through all 3 of these books, The Final Empire, The Well of Ascension & The Hero of Ages. All of which were downloaded onto my phone, so every available moment I had was spent on these books (and will also be bought in paperback at some stage). They are SO good. I absolutely loved them. The characters are amazing, I got so emotionally attached to near enough all of them, and the ending is just phenomenal. Sometimes when a series ends, readers are left so dissatisfied, many argue about different ways the author should have gone, or they think that the ending was weak compared to the amazing storyline. I don't feel like any of these apply here. The ending was tragic, beautiful & fitting. It made so much sense, it was so satisfying. If you like Fantasy novels, I promise you won't be disappointed here. The magic system is a bit weird, I found it quite hard to get used to, but once I got over that I was hooked. You can find the trilogy here on Amazon if you're interested.

Counterfeit Gods - Timothy Keller

This book actually belongs to my friend Beth, who recommended it & kindly lent it to me. I've had it for a while now, I should probably give it back! It is a very good book. It explores the theme of idolatry, what that looked like in biblical times & how it translates into in our lives now. It's very challenging, and dredges up some hard truths about how we live our own lives, but it is no less amazing because of that. Actually, I think that the challenging aspect of it is what makes it stand out so much. Timothy Keller is a very talented writer, his stories in the book come across very natural, it's almost like having a conversation. They also mesh so easily with the Scripture & biblical truths that he constantly includes & reinforces. It's amazing, and incredibly scary, how easy it is to put your trust in something, to worship something and not even really be aware that you're doing it. I loved this book because it reminded me that God is all that matters. He is everything, He is what is missing in our lives when we feel lost, He is what we're looking for when we think there is something missing, God is what we crave when we don't know what it is that we're so desperate for. It reminded me to look to Him, instead of all the wrong places. Find it here on Amazon. I really do recommend it!

The Help - Kathryn Stockett

Image courtesy of Amazon.

This book was also incredible. It was so intense, but in a quiet, kind of relentless way and I honestly couldn't put it down. I think it was the first time I'd ever read anything about what life was like in America during the turbulent era of the civil rights movements. This book is set in early 1960s, and centres around  2 black maids, Minny & Aibileen, and a white college graduate Miss Skeeter, in Jackson, Mississippi, and their work to aid the civil rights movement. The prejudices in the town are stark & harrowing, with scenes of such cruelty that I had tears in my eyes. Alongside those, however, were scenes of tenderness, love & joy, that also brought tears to my eyes! It's a beautiful read, and has also been adapted to the big screen so next on my list will be watching the movie to see how it matches up. Find it here on Amazon.

The Fire Sermon - Francesca Haig

Image courtesy of Amazon.

 This is the most recent book that I've completed, having finishing it on Monday. It's yet another download victim, but I'm pretty sure I'm going to get it in physical form too. The Fire Sermon is set in a post-apocalyptic world of Alphas & Omegas, twins who are separated as children and defined one way or another. One is vastly superior to the other, and yet they can't survive without each other. I found it quite slow at the beginning, but if you can persevere it turns out to be an intriguing story, full of suspense & tragedy. It's dark & depressing but somehow it's slightly uplifting at the same time. It's not a very easy read, but I think that the story was fascinating enough to not put it down! Find it here on Amazon.

The Polaris Whisper - Kenneth Gregory

Image courtesy of Amazon.
This book is next on my list, so I haven't actually started reading it yet. I'm not gonna lie...the only reason I bought it is because it was on the top of a sale pile in Waterstones, and it was only £1.00. A single pound, I mean I couldn't not buy a book for a pound! In fairness though, it does sound good. It's a Norse legend, historical fiction about Vikings & Trials & long journeys & adventures. All that good stuff. So I'm excited to start reading it! Find it here on Amazon, not for £1.00 though, you missed out on that one!

If you have any book recommendations, please leave them in the comments! I love reading what other people love!