Back in March I introduced this new mini-review series for the Penguin Modern Classics, a collection of tiny pocket-sized modern classics sold for just £1. Having quite a few of these, I decided to review them in groups of three – and today we finally have the second post, the one where things are lost. Somehow – despite choosing them in a completely random order – I’ve managed to find a common theme for each post so far (the first one being “the death episode”) and today’s is very much about what is lost in their story. So we have The Missing Girl, the lost thing in this book being pretty obvious, Africa’s Tarnished Name, discussing the lost culture and accurate representation of Africa, and Till September Petronella, following women who feel lost in their worlds. What you will find, however, is my thoughts on these books below…
Don’t let the rainbow cover deceive you; this book is far from the happy-go-lucky story you might expect. Following Charlie Calloway in her Junior year at high school, things gradually begin to turn serious as she’s offered the chance to join secret – though dangerous – exclusive society, dubbing her as one of the elite. When things turn darker and a family secret is unexpectedly involved, the mystery needs to unravel for Charlie to know where she stands.
In a world where natural death has been eradicated and immortality is a standard expectation from life, Citra and Rowan are chosen as apprentice scythes – scythes being professional killers chosen to keep the population at bay. Thrown into a morbid world forever testing their morals, we learn about this new world order as we watch the two train for the hardest job of their lives.
A grief-stricken world void of colour and laughter. Stories that seem legendary, but were real eighteen years ago. A girl taking the chance she never realised she wanted. All of this – and more – you’ll find in State of Sorrow, and I guarantee you it’s worth the read.
If you’ve followed me on any social media in the past month or so, you just *might* know how excited I’ve been about the new little Penguin Moderns. At £1 each, these tiny books seem to be a fab way of trying new authors or bumping up your Goodreads goal, or even – if you’re like me – giving yourself a tiny confidence boost as you still manage to finish a book within your busy schedule (even if it is only 50 pages long, but shh). And so after eagerly anticipating these gems, I promptly bought 4 of them the day of their release.
…And then went back and bought 3 more. Oops.
But having acquired a little collection, and with the likelihood of me buying more in the future, I thought I do a little review series for them. Since they’re so tiny, I’ll be combining together 3 mini reviews for each post, this first one covering The Vigilante by John Steinbeck, The Breakthrough by Daphne du Maurier, and Four Russian Short Stories by Gazdanov and Others. Without realising, they can all be connected with one common theme: Someone, at some point, dies in each of these lil books. We’re morbidly kicking things off with a death episode. Still, let’s chat books…
The paperback from Strange The Dreamer is finally coming to the UK! *throws confetti* It’s been a long time coming, and at long last here we are. To celebrate, I’ve joined the Strange The Dreamer blog tour today, sharing my review from when I read this delight of a read and reminding you all that you should give it a go. In fact, I’ve reminded myself that I should reread it sometimes this year, especially with the second book Muse of Nightmares coming out later this year.
Anyway, enough rambling – onto the (spoiler free) review!
Set on the streets of 18th century Cairo before plunging us into the world of Daevabad, this is a fantasy novel I’ve been eagerly anticipating for months. Following a conwoman called Nahri, we witness her healing tricks long before she admits to them being magical – that is, until she accidentally summons a (kind of) djinn warrior in the process. Which, to be fair, would convince me too.
Today, my lovelies, I’m taking part in a blog tour! It’s been an awful long while since I’ve done one of these, but I couldn’t pass up the opportunity when I heard about this book. It caught my attention immediately, and with the need for mystery I’ve been feeling lately, it came at just the right time!
Set in the rainy bushland of the Giralang Ranges, this book follows a team of five women reluctantly sent out on a team building hike. What better way to build team spirit, right? Well, sure…apart from one of them doesn’t come back. Things go downhill real quick when Alice Russell disappears from the group and the rest of the women come back looking worn and disheveled, the situation calling for Aaron Faulk and a whole team of investigators to get involved.
Despite being one of the most popularly known pieces of canonized literature, I still struggle to explain what this book is about beyond “it follows the life of Jane Eyre”. Honestly, I don’t feel like all that much happens for the length of it. But that’s not to say it doesn’t deserve it’s high acclaim. It’s just that when you read a lot of fantasy, you come to expect a lot of events (and numerous opportunities to wield your magic slaying-powers, of course).
So we start off with Jane as a child – a state I can just about manage. It’s far from my favourite stage to read about. To me, the language just seems rigid and almost wrong for her age. I’m well aware that the story is being narrated through an older Jane Eyre’s perspective, recounting her story and being able to add intelligence and hindsight beyond her focused years. But when that language and voice doesn’t change at all in recounting the dialogue of a ten year old…it’s strangely jarring. I don’t think I’ll ever get used to it, no matter if it was true to the time period or character. So we’ll just ignore ten-year-old-Jane, okayy? Okayy.
Saying that, Jane Eyre soon grows older – as nature requires – and from that point on I can barely find anything to fault in the book. Because ohhhh it gets intense.
But how can it get intense if not all that much happens?
Following a girl called Emilie as she digs through her family history and inadvertently falls back in time to 1913, I’ve dubbed this one as a less dense version of Outlander – but Canadian. Although, come to think of it, you do still get a Scottish guy, so…
Reading this on a train journey home, I found myself whisked into a history I hadn’t previously seen much of. It’s not often you find books set in Canada, and it made a nice change compared to the usual US or London settings that seem to overwhelm books in general.