January to March Reading Wrap Up 2019
Time to fix that with a January to March Reading Wrap Up with mini-reviews of all the books I have read so far this year – excluding the books I read for work for which I am impartial.
Books I Read in January
The first book I read was The No Spend Year by Michelle McGagh and I’ve already done a book review on my blog.
Life Honestly by The Pool
Very oddly I read this book only a few days before The Pool went under. The Pool was an online website for Millennial women on the go and it, very sadly, went under with a massive load of debt and a load of authors unpaid. This book is a collection of some of their most popular posts. Well worth a read.
The Discomfort Zone by Farrah Storr
The editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan magazine, Farrah Storr wrote an article on being in your Discomfort Zone, where you go when you’re not sure you’re going to succeed. The zone you have to go into in order to challenge yourself and achieve things of meaning. An inspiring book which I’ll admit to having forgotten a little bit about. I’ll be re-reading this I think.
No More Plastic by Martin Dorey
As you’ll probably know, this year I’ve got zero-waste (or I’m trying to) and this is a handy, pocket guide to items that we can replace in order to stop plastic polluting our lives. Well worth picking up for 99p.
The Little Book of Tidying by Beth Penn
I was on one of my ‘self-care’ kicks when I picked this up for 99p in January. It didn’t leave much of an impression on me but it inspired me to clean my little studio flat at least.
Everything I Know About Love by Dolly Alderton
After trying and failing to read this book twice, I got the audiobook via Libby (a library app). Listening to it helped a lot and by the end, I had really enjoyed it. Yes, it did feel like another ‘white girl problems’ book about a woman living her privileged life of London and drugs but by the end of it I at least felt for Dolly and wanted to hear her story.
From Coping to Thriving by Hannah Braime
Got to say… I don’t remember anything about this book. It was an audiobook I listened to on my commute and made good white noise. I’m afraid that’s all I can say really. Oops.
Departures by Anna Hart
I fucking love this book. This is the first book on the year that I can genuinely say I adored. At no point did I want it to end. Every new chapter was interesting, inspiring and fun! I booked a holiday because of this bloody book and I’m going to re-read it while I’m away so I can remember exactly why I spent £600 I didn’t have on a trip abroad.
Books I Read in February
Excluding, again, the books I read for work.
You are a Badass by Jen Sincero
Another one of those books where an American lady shouts ‘encouragement’ through my ears as I listen to an audiobook on the tube. I need to change it up and get something with a plot. I might read Jen’s other book on money management as then I might listen to her.
The Joy of Doing Just Enough by Jennifer McCartney
This book actually frustrated me like hell. It made me feel like I was being told I was doing too much and I should be lazy as someone else would just pick up the slack. What’s the point in being proactive or optimistic or try-hard? I don’t know… a career, successful relationship, a life.
101 Ways to Live Well by Lonely Planet
I downloaded this book via Libby for a little late-night reading when I couldn’t get to sleep one night. It sent me right off. Lists generally do. Quite a fun pretty read though.
Your Dream Life Starts Here by Kristina Karlsson
The founder of Kikki K. I listened to this audiobook with interest. I had no idea she started the business after a late night conversation with her husband on what she should do with her life – she grabbed a pen and paper. And the idea for Kikki K was born. Quite inspiring. I might pick this up as a hard copy one day.
In at the Deep End by Kate Davies
My next favourite read of the year so far. This book was completely unexpected and filthy. I’ve never read so many graphic sex scenes in my life – or had so many people change seats on the tube after reading over my shoulder. Hey – I didn’t know there was going to be a chapter on squirting when I started this novel! When Julia discovers her dormant lesbianism her life goes on a rollercoaster ride of change. Funny, descriptive and raw I loved this debut.
Hashtag Authentic by Sara Tasker
This is really is a coffee table book, an enjoyable one but not one that I found particularly interesting or inspiring. Sara has a gorgeous Instagram, no doubt about it, and this book is a selection of her favourite photos, how she came to have a good Instagram and how she takes her photos.
Books I Read in March
Excluding any I haven’t finished reading yet.
Say No to Plastic by Harriet Dyer
Another pocketbook on ways to change your use of plastic and stop plastic pollution. This had a bit more in-depth research behind it and a look at what happens to our plastic once we throw it away. Useful, a little frightening and a good book for people that still think climate change isn’t happening.
The Art of Not Falling Apart by Christina Patterson
I did enjoy this book and learning about Christina’s successful career and own experiences but I was definitely not the target demographic. This book is for women in their late thirties and forties who have experienced hardship at work, within relationships and with regards to having children or not.
Nobody Cares by Anne T. Donahue
This is a collection of essays written by my Canadian counterpart. I feel like the British equivalent and I love it! These essays touched me emotionally, personally and realistically. None of them hold their punches which it fab. Plus, this collection has just been optioned for TV!
Normal People by Sally Rooney
After reading Conversation with Friends back in 2017 I’ve been after Sally Rooney’s next book for ages! I was able to get my hands on a signed copy a few weeks after Christmas and I devoured the book over a few sittings in March. It is tender, warming, heartbreaking and frustrating, just as her first book was. Although I prefer Conversations with Friends overall this is still a really good book that will make you feel something, anything.
Karamo by Karamo Brown
I am a massive fan of Queer Eye! I honestly live for it now. So I was super excited to hear that Karamo was releasing a book – so much so I bought it and read it within three days of it being released and I was shocked. It is so well written but the thing that is shocking is the contents. I was appalled, overjoyed, delighted and horrified in equal measure. To learn things about Karamo which are hard for anyone to admit was beautiful and also mind-boggling. I see him, and the show, in a completely different light. Both for the better and worse. This was an experience to read.
My Girls by Todd Fisher
I loved Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, I thought they were both equally talented, beautiful, funny and fractured but oh so real. When they did within a day of each other on the 27th and 28th December 2016 respectively I was heartbroken. When I saw Todd Fisher, Carrie’s younger brother and Debbie’s only son had released a book depicting his life with his mother and sister – the My Girls of the title – from his birth to a year after they passed away, I had to read it. It is truly heartbreaking but also heartwarming to hear what they all went through. But most of all to hear the love that that family had for each despite it all.
A Zero Waste Life in Thirty Days by Anita Vandyke
I listened to this when I should have bought the book. If I had bought the book in ebook or hard copy it would have been a lot easier to follow along with. Still, a useful book on how to get into the zero-waste lifestyle but it doesn’t include anything that you can’t find on the internet though.
Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams
The publishing world is going slightly crazy for this at the moment, mostly because Candice is actually a part of that world since she works for Vintage. This is her debut and it is apparent she has a voice worth listening to. I can’t say I loved it, there were too many strands of storyline that weren’t strong enough and I thought that the characters were quite irritable and silly sometimes. But that being said it is her first novel and I think these issues can be ironed out with time. I’ll happily read what she writes next because her themes are worth the read.