Books Set in Other Countries

Hello everybody!

Today I’m taking part in Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, which the theme of today is books set in other countries. I absolutely love travelling elsewhere via books since I don’t do it in real life, so I had lots of fun with this prompt! As I wrote a guest post on this last year, I’ve mainly included books I’ve read recently, but there are also a few I never shut up about! Technically, I could have chosen almost every book I read for this since I don’t live in England, but I’ve not cheated…

Continue reading “Books Set in Other Countries”

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10 Books I Could Reread Forever

Hello everybody!

Today, I’m going to be taking part in Top Ten Tuesday, which is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Today’s theme is basically perfect for me as I absolutely love rereading and the fact that I barely do any more since starting blogging is so annoying. Onto the books!

Chocolate Box Girls series by Cathy Cassidy– it seems only fitting to kick this post off with this series, which I’m pretty sure first released in 2010, aka when I wasn’t even double digits in terms of age. If they can withstand that length of time, I’m fairly sure I’ll be rereading them forever. They’re lovely teen contemporaries about a blended family creating a chocolate business, and the lives of the 5 daughters in particular.

Geek Girl series by Holly Smale- these books are like a cosy comfort blanket for me. They’re my go to in the middle of any especially tough time, and this world and these characters just never ever fail to lift my mood, though I always find it super tough to leave again as I get near the end.

Murder Most Unladylike series by Robin Stevens- these are, like what I know of Agatha Christie’s books (which I should probably read, as I somehow never have), the perfect mix of cosy and crime. They’re intricately plotted, have a nostalgic feel that’s like a more murderous Malory Towers vibe, and a really phenomenal friendship between two incredible female characters. They’re also very funny (or, I think so anyway), and they’re continuing to be of top notch quality 6 books in. It’s also super cool to pick up on foreshadowing when I reread them, as I am unobservant and never notice on my first reading.

The 39 Clues series by various authors- this series is criminally underrated and I cannot fathom why. They’re like an addictive TV series, and about the feuding superpower Cahill family as they undertake an unusual battle for an even more unusual inheritance. Discovering these books again is amazing, and I’d love to fit in a reread of this in 2018.

Adventure Island series by Helen Moss– another series I’d love to reread this year, time permitting, is this. It was my saviour at a time when I couldn’t find any books I loved and wasn’t sure reading was for me. Castle Key is a fantastic setting, I adore the characters, and as a lover of MG mysteries I’m yet to stumble upon a series with such consistently complex mysteries. Each of the 14 are of such a high standard, and I very much recommend them.

The Babysitters Club by Ann M Martin– it would take years to reread this series (in truth, I don’t think I’ve read them all anyway), but they’re perfect low concentration reads for when I’m especially I’ll. I found solace in a few mysteries when I had an especially bad chest infection last spring, for example. I’d like to rediscover some super specials this year.

Lobsters by Tom Ellen and Lucy Ivison- I haven’t reread this in a while I’ve realised, but most of the time when I do I want to turn straight back to the start when I finish (and yes, I have done this before, multiple times). I adore the characters, the story is a lot of fun and it’s the laugh out loud type of funny.

Boy in the Tower by Polly Ho-Yen- after raving about it on this blog an awful lot, my reread of this at New Year was daunting to say the least. But it more than lived up to my stratospheric recollection, and I weeped my way into 2018, unable to leave Ade’s world again before I finished.

Lockwood and Co series by Jonathan Stroud- I got into this series when there were only 3 of 5 books, and I must have read them at least 3 or 4 times in three months. I’ve not done a full reread yet, but I’d very much like to soon.

Pony Club Secrets by Stacy Gregg- this is the only longer series I’ve vowed I MUST reread this year, and I’m ridiculously excited, but also nervous, to reread them. I hope they’ll retain this status after I do, though I have a feeling they’re timeless in the same vein as the Chocolate Box Girls.

Thank you so much for reading! What books could you reread forever? Do we share any? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter @GoldenBooksGirl!

Amy xxx

Top Ten Tuesday- 5 Books I Barely Remember 

Hello everbody!


Today I’m taking part in Top Ten Tuesday hosted by 
That Artsy Reader Girl. Like last week, I couldn’t come up with 10, so have decided to go for 5 Books I struggle to remember. This is in no way a reflection of the quality of the books- just that I read them YEARS ago. Onto the books!

 

Trouble by Non Pratt
– I remember a few things about this book (two parts of the plot), the names of the two lead characters and one side one, and that’s about it. In my defense, I think I was a bit young to fully grasp it at 12/13 and I think I’d probably remember much more if I read it agiam (now just to track down a copy…)


Ketchup Clouds by Annabel Pitcher
– I loved this book. I thought the narrative style was so, so clever and I’ve never read anything like it. But I’m so fuzzy with the events of this book. I remember the set up, and the fact the main character’s called Zoe. I’d really like to reread it to see how I feel about it now!

Where Monsters Lie by Polly Ho-Yen
– if you know my love for Boy in the Tower/Fly Me Home, you’ll be surprised by this. But I really did not like this,  and I was so upset I think I’ve just blocked it from my memory. I know it’s about slugs, I recall the name of the main character and the fsct I detested it, other than that, not a squeak.


Wonder by R.J Palacio
– I enjoyed this, even though it didn’t quite live up to the hype for me. I genuinely don’t remember a single event in this now.


The Secret Seven by Enid Blyton
– I think these are my least favourite Blyton books. They’re massively overrated, if you ask me (JUSTICE FOR THE FIVE FIND OUTERS, THEY ARE THE BEST AND NO ONE KNOWS WHO THEY ARE!) And I only really remember the name of the dog, and something about secret passwords to enter their clubhouse?


Thank you so much for reading! Are you a little foggy on the events of some books? Do we share any? Let me know in the comments below or on Twitter @GoldenBooksGirl!

Amy xxx

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I’m Hoping to Find Under my Tree 

Hello everybody, and welcome to day 19 of blogmas!

Today, I’m taking part in the Top Ten Tuesday meme, hosted by the Broke and the Bookish, for which the theme today is books we’re hoping to get for Christmas. 

Onto the post! 

 The Last Duchess by Laura Powell– I’ve heard this is similar to a few books I love (such as the Murder Most Unladylike Mysteries), and I’d really like to give it a go for that reason. I love historical mysteries and I also really like Upstairs, Downstairs sorts of things focusing on servants (such as Frost Hollow Hall by Emma Carroll) as it’s an area of history you don’t see that often.


Queens of Geeks by Jen Wilde
– this one’s had very mixed reviews, so I’m interested to see what I’ll think of it. It sounds like a fun read though, and I’m willing to try it.


Gabriel’s Clock by Hilton Pashley
– I’ve had this recommended to me by a few bloggers I really trust, and the concept is intriguing. I also loved Hilton Pashley’s guest posts during the blog tour for Michael’s Spear (the final book of this trilogy) so I want to see if I enjoy the first book.


Troublemakers by Catherine Barton
– I’ve only seen good reviews of this, and I’m interested by it as it touches on political issues, which is something I don’t see directly in books often.


This Careless Life by Rachel McIntyre
– I was a huge fan of Rachel McIntyre’s previous releases, and though I know this is quite different sounding in tone/subject matter I’d still very much like to unwrap it on Christmas day. I love a good mystery, and I’m hoping this might be similar to One of Us Is Lying.


Della Says OMG by Keris Stainton
– even though this is a few years old now, I saw a hugely positive review of it recently and I’m very much hoping to recieve this. It sounds like the mix of serious and fun I always enjoy when done well too.


Jessie Hearts NYC by Keris Stainton- 
I read and liked One Italian Summer by this author earlier this year and thought the worldbuilding of the Italian settting was exceptional, so I’m looking forward to  to seeing her take on New York (which I adore as a setting in general). 
 

Frostblood by Elly Blake
– I’m pretty fussy with YA fantasy (I vastly prefer the MG variety) but this sounds like something I’m likely to enjoy.

Here We Are Now by Jasmine Warga
– I love stories with long lost family members reuiniting, I’ve heard brilliant things about this one and I’m adding it to my Christmas wishlist as I’ve had my eye on it since before it’s release.


Rubies and Runaways by Janine Beacham
– I really enjoyed Janine Beacham’s debut Black Cats and Butlers earlier this year, and I really want to read Rose’s second adventure soon. It’s set at Christmas too, so it seems like the perfect book to read soon after if I get it. I think this is quite different to other MG mysteries out at the moment, mainly due to the AMAZING, super cool secret society of butlers.
What books are you hoping to recieve this Christmas? Have you read any of my list? What did you think of them? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter @GoldenBooksGirl!

Amy xxx

#sixforsunday: War Books

Hello everybody!

Today, I’m taking part once again in #sixforsunday, hosted by wonderful Steph. Today’s theme is war books, of which I’ve read some amazing, heatbreaking stories.

Onto the books! 


War Horse by Michael Morpurgo- this is one of the first things I remember ever crying over. It’s a gorgeous book about how World War One rips apart the life pf a boy called Albert and his horse Joey, and their journey to find each other again.

Pax by Sara Pennypacker- shamefully, I haven’t yet read this one, but it’s so similar in synopsis to War Horse I couldn’t resist including it. It’s a very similar story, except it’s about a boy and his fox. I can’t wait to finally devour it (though I am certain it’ll make me cry!)

Goodnight Mr Tom by Michelle Magorian- Speaking of books which make me cry, this absolutely destroyed me. It’s about shy, strange Willie Beech as he is evacuated to the countryside and is sent to live with Mr Tom Oakley, and how it changes his life forever. While this is an amazing book, I definetely wouldn’t allow anyone under about 10 to read it as some parts really preyed on my mind aged 14.

Letters from the Lighthouse by Emma Carroll- Another evacuee story, although this one has much more of a focus on Jewish refugees! It’s a fabulous read, as is everything by Emma Carroll, and I highly recommend it. It focuses on Olive and her little brother Clive as they move to the seaside, and are taken in by the mysterious lighthouse keeper. 

Carries War by Nina Bawden- I can’t remember a great deal about this one, but it was my first time really learning about the war and what it was, when it was my class book in P5 or P6, and I definetly remember liking it more than most of the stuff (read: drivel) we got forced to study.

A Million Angels by Kate Maryon- This was a really sad story about a girl called Jemima whose dad is away fighting in Afghanistan, and again I found it a reakky upsetting read. It also explores World War Two through the eyes of Jemima’s gran. 

What do you think of these books, if you’ve read them? Are any on your TBR? What books set during wartime would you recommend? I’d really love to hear from you down in the comments or on Twitter @GoldenBooksGirl

Amy xxx

#sixforsunday: Diverse Books

Hello everybody! Today, I’m taking part in the FABULOUS Six for Sunday meme, hosted by the lovely Steph. Today’s prompt was diverse books, so without further ado here are 6 I love!


Simon Vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli- I love this book huge amounts. It’s about Simon, who is in love with an Internet correspondent called Blue, as he comes out to his friends and family and everything that happens in his life during that period. It’s so funny and cosy and clever, and Simon is so incredibly sweet. 

The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli- Becky Albertalli’s 2nd novel is diverse both in terms of race and sexuality, and one of it’s main themes is the main character Molly discovering that being fat doesn’t make her unattractive or inferior, which I think was really refreshing to see in a book! 

The Murder Most Unladylike Mysteries by Robin Stevens- These books feature a Chinese main character in Hazel Wong (who I desperately want to be my best friend/sister, please and thank you) and they explore the racism that ethnic minorities would face during the time period. My heart absolutely breaks for Hazel in some scenes; the way she gets treated can be awfully unfair. We also some LGBT romances taking place, and other ethnic minority characters are introduced as the books go on.

Radio Silence by Alice Oseman- This book is incedibly diverse; not one of the main characters is straight, and it’s utterly amazing. It starts off with such light humour and gets darker and deeper as it develops, and also features one of the most evil characters I’ve ever read (I won’t say who, cause spoilers, but I really hate them. If you do too, please come hate on them with me! 😠)

Susie Day- One of my favourite things about Susie Day is that her books are incredibly diverse, and I think it’s done very naturally and explored amazingly. They’re also just generally great contemporary MG!

The Art of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson- This books features two trans protagonists, David and Leo, and I adore it. They’re both fabulous characters and there are scenes which take my breath away. I highly recommend it!

What are your favourite diverse books? I’d love to hear in the comments or on Twitter @GoldenBooksGirl!

Amy xxx

#sixforsunday: Books That Made Me Cry

Hello everybody!

Today, I’m taking part in Steph’s fabulous Six for Sunday meme, and today’s theme is books that made us cry. I cry at quite a lot of books, so I’ve decided to speak about six which particularly emotionally destroyed me! 😭

Let’s get started! (In noparticular order)

Boy in the Tower by Polly Ho-Yen – Im not sure what it is about this book that makes me cry. I think it’s Ade. His bravery and narration is wonderful; the real star attraction of the story, and also the community spirit we see as the book progresses. Even the opening pages make me well up now, because I know all of the journey that’s to come.

Being Miss Nobody by Tamsin Winter- This has been one of my favouritereads this year, and it made me incredibly emotional. I cried quite a bit, but I also laughed and smiled. It’s a very special book, and I can’t wait to reread it and read more from Tamsin Winter. 

Running on the Roof of the World by Jess Butterworth- Like the above, this book is a total emotional rollercoaster, and I cried several times. In one scene involving the yaks (which I won’t spoil), Jess Butterworth broke my heart. She put it back together by the end though, and her writing is so stunning and special I don’t mind anyway.

Summer’s Dream by Cathy Cassidy- Summer’s struggle with anorexia, which we see in this book most prominently, is devastating, and certainly made me cry in places.

Ways to Live Forever by Sally Nicholls- Sam’s story tore my heart apart, and the ending cemented this. It’s such a beautiful, heartwarming and heartbreaking story, and even though I barely ever hear anyone mentioning it anymore I think it’ll stay with me forever. 

Trash by Andy Mulligan- this story tells of 3 boys in a 3rd world country, eho have to sift through trash to survive. The subject matter is heartwrenching, and all too real, and it’s the first book I remember being absolutely broken by. I can’t remember everything about it now, as it’s quite a few years since I’ve read it and I’m too scared to pick it up again, but it had a huge effect on me at the time. 

Thank you so much for reading! What books made you cry, if any? I’d love to hear from you in the comments!

See you soon with a new post, 

Amy xxx