July Wrap & August TBR (of sorts)

Hey everybody! (Hi Dr. Nick)

So my July TBR pile had four books on it… and I read five! Woop!

…except three of those five books weren’t even on my TBR pile, so technically I failed at completing it. Sigh. I’ve been struggling with sticking to my TBR piles – I’m fine for the first couple books, but then I go off track and feel guilty when I don’t read what I’m supposed to. Which is frankly ridiculous because the only person who actually cares is myself.

For these reasons I’m going to stop making lists of the exact books I want to read in a month – instead I’m going to name two or three (depending on their length, etc.) that I really want to get around to and set a number of books I want to read over that month. This way, I can be more flexible and ditch this absolutely pointless sense of guilt.

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So anyways, this is what I read over the month of July:

A God in Ruinsreview

The Lies of Locke Lamorareview

The Muse review

Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde (review coming soon)

Attachmentsreview

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 Overall, July was a great reading month for me – I thoroughly enjoyed all five of the books I read. 🙂

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August TBR:

Reading goal = 5 books

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

The Name of the Wind

A new Harry Potter book guys! Finally! I mean, yeah it’s a play, but it’s something! And Fantastic Beasts comes out later this year!

cover_ukcursed-child-book

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So what are you guys planning on reading in August? I’d love to hear from you!

lizard

Book Review: A God in Ruins

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Author: Kate Atkinson

Read: July, 2016

Genre: Historical – WW2, Fiction

 

 

 

Review:

Summary from Goodreads:

WINNER OF THE 2015 COSTA NOVEL AWARD
A God in Ruins relates the life of Teddy Todd – would-be poet, heroic World War II bomber pilot, husband, father, and grandfather – as he navigates the perils and progress of the 20th century. For all Teddy endures in battle, his greatest challenge will be to face living in a future he never expected to have.

This gripping, often deliriously funny yet emotionally devastating book looks at war – that great fall of Man from grace – and the effect it has, not only on those who live through it, but on the lives of the subsequent generations. It is also about the infinite magic of fiction.Those who loved the bestselling Life After Life will recognise Teddy as Ursula Todd’s adored younger brother – but for those who have not read it, A God in Ruins stands fully on its own.

This book grew on me. I feel that it started out a little slow; the second section “Alouette” about Teddy’s childhood was rather meandering and uneventful, but still interesting and effective at establishing most of the main characters in Teddy’s life. After this section, the others were a lot more engaging and flitted between various points in Teddy’s long life – his experiences in WW2, the immediate aftermath, his married life, his daughter Viola growing up, his grandchildren, his old age. The scale of the novel’s story is quite impressive, and I admire how Atkinson has managed to distil an entire life into the pages of her book.

The omnipresent narrative took me a while to get used to – it’s weird reading about a child and being given information about his future daughter, but ultimately this style of weaving different threads of time together it what makes A God in Ruins so brilliant. It connects the dots between time period and generations of a family. It highlights the repercussions of history, most specifically the impact of WW2 on both the individual (Teddy) and wider society. It’s compassionate but honest in its depiction of its characters and their flaws, about life in general.

Overall, A God in Ruins struck me as being a book about consequences – of history, of our actions, of our emotions. It’s a beautiful book that had me shedding a few tears, especially in the scenes about (SPOILER! SPOILER!) Teddy’s wife, Nancy, dealing with her illness and the eventual end of her life.

Honestly, I recommend it for everyone.

Best Quote/s:

“One’s own life seemed puny against the background of so much history.”

“Moments left, Teddy thought. A handful of heartbeats. That was what life was. A heartbeat followed by a heartbeat. A breath followed by a breath. One moment followed by another moment and then there was a last moment.”

 

Has any else read this book? Thoughts? I’d love to hear them!

lizard

July TBR

June was a month of classics (sort of). I completed my TBR pile, reading Emma by Jane Austen, The Lifted Veil by George Eliot, and Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights. I also read a graphic novel called The Wicked + the Divine, which was pretty awesome. I’ve added the links to my reviews of each book, in case anyone’s curious. 🙂

So, onward to July (where is 2016 going! July already!). This month I want to read:

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The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothuss

The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch

A God in Ruins by Kate Atkinson

Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell

 

 

Anyone out there already read any of these books? I’d love to hear your thoughts or what you’re planning on reading this month!

lizard