Reading Roudup

Reading Roundup: October 2023

October was a surprisingly good month for reading! I got through 7 new books!

October turned out to be a great reading month for me. I started my new job, which has been a bit anxiety inducing with all the meeting new people and all the new information to take on, but it hasn’t been stressful! Certainly not compared to the last couple of months!

I’ve also been listening to audiobooks in my commute, reading a bit more at lunch time, and trying to keep my strict bedtime reading routine!

But also, I also read some real “bangers” as the kids say! This month I have been spotted reading my kindle in weekend mornings while not in bed!

4 eBooks

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin ⭐️⭐️⭐️

My second Gabrielle Zevin, after Tomorrow, And Tomrrow, And Tomorrow, confirmed that while I do like her writing and her ability to write characters, I find the stories she tells with them really dull. This book felt like it was having an identify crisis, not being successful in any genre, and ended up like a cheesey made for tv movie,

Idol by Louise O’Neill ⭐⭐⭐⭐

I could not put this down. I was born away by Asking For It in 2015, and with this book again Louise O’Neill explores similar murky themes around consent and rape, but from the perspective of a Wellness influencer/critter accused by her childhood best friend. It’s a thrilling exploration of memory from the point of view of a manipulative, highly unreliable protagonist. Reading at the same time as Animal Farm and 1984 was also an interesting compliment of themes!

Several People Are Typing by Karl Kalsulke ⭐⭐⭐⭐

This one is bonkers and I loved it. A man gets his consciousness sucked into his workplace messaging app, and needs his colleagues help to get him back in his body. Told entirely in chat logs it is a quick and ridiculous read .

Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams ⭐⭐⭐⭐

I am so glad I finally read this! It got off to a bumpy start and I was ready in the first half to write it off as a three stars, but then as Queenie begins to turn her life around in the second half I was gripped. It’s a complex and nuance exploration if trauma, race, mental health issues and the tricky age of 25.

3 Audiobooks

The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion ⭐⭐⭐

I’d heard if this but never knew what it was about. I needed an audiobook and I was sucked in by an Australian narrator! It’s perhaps a bit dated now as a rom-com and in its attitudes towards austism spectrum disorder, but it’s also very cute and funny.

Animal Farm by George Orwell ⭐⭐⭐⭐

All you need to know is its read by Stephen Fry, and I doubt if have borrowed it if it wasn’t for that fact! However I was surprised by just how simple and accessible the story is, it is incredibly effective as an allegory whether you know much about Soviet Russia or not. It’s also super depressing.

1984 by George Orwell ⭐⭐⭐⭐

The second half if the collection read by Steohen Fry again who injected more character and entertainment value than is perhaps on the page. Picking up and expanding on themes from Animal Farm this offers a very depressing vision of a future, as a warning against allowing totalitarianism to rise. It is uncomfortably relevant to politicians and the media today, it feels like more and more each year.

Adding To My TBR

I went a but crazy with the 99p Kindle deals this month!

  • Sea of Tranquility by Emily St John Mandel – I read but didn’t love Station 11 years ago, I am curious about this but not sure it’ll be to my taste.
  • The Authority Gap by Mary Ann Sieghart – a bit of non-fic for a change!
  • The Ghost Woods by C.J. Cooke – I read The Lighthouse Witches last year which – despite a dire lack of witches – I enjoyed!
  • We Spead by Iain Reid – impulse purchase because it sounds weird and twisty, and Mona Awad praise on it’s blurb!
  • Burning Questions by Margaret Atwood – non-fic collection of essays and writing. I actually don’t know about Atwood so for 99p interesting to read!

I am currently reading Paris Hilton’s Memoir in Spotify (included in my Premium) which is excellent so far, but also very tough to listen to in the sections on her time imprisoned in the troubled teen industry.

On Kindle I’m about 30% of the way into Run, Rose, Run by Dolly Parton & James Patterson. At first I thought it’s highly cheesy Nashville country music setting was going to be hard work for me but so far it’s actually really gripping!

This month I also completed my Goodreads reading challenge of 50 books in 2023, this is the most I’ve read in years! I want to rank the 50 books I’ve read this year at some point, I think it’ll be interesting to see if my opinions have changed over the last few months.

I hope you had a good October!

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