WWW Wednesday: 9th January 2019

Hello and welcome to the first WWW Wednesday of 2019 (that I’ve done)! I’ve had a fairly hectic week, but have still been enjoying some books of course! I’ve been so exhausted, that all I want to do is chill when I get home from work and be lazy, so I’ve spent a lot of time on Pinterest where I’ve been planning my wedding…awkward moment of the week when I got a call from a venue (I downloaded their brochure the day before just to have a mooch) and had to explain that I am not actually engaged…yet!

img_3609
What are you currently reading? 

FINALLY, I’ve started reading Enchantée by Gita Trelease which I am LOVING so much! It’s absolutely wonderful. The description is definitely right; it has a lot of Caraval vibes, and, because I needed a new audiobook, I also started The Night Circus which was also listed! I’m really enjoying that too, especially since the narrator, Jim Kay, is brilliant!

the year after you
What did you recently finish reading?

I finished The Year After You last week, and it was such a good read! YA meets Enid Blyton; it was brilliant. Look out for my thoughts on this next month when I’m part of the blog tour!


What do you think you’ll read next?

I must read The Day I Was Erased by Lisa Thompson! Her books are always a fab start tot the year!

kayleigh

Advertisements

Six for Sunday: 6th January 2019

Hello and welcome to 2019! I totally meant to do Blogmas every day of December, and to have posts scheduled for the first week of January…but life. It’s inconvenient sometimes!

Anyway, I’m back, and very happy to see that Six for Sunday has a whole new list of prompts for the first half of this year over on Steph’s blog, so, without further ado, here is the first Six for Sunday of 2019!

Bookish Beginnings: New Year, New Books

  1. The Day I Was Erased by Lisa Thompson
  2. The Art of Not Breathing by Sarah Alexander
  3. Goodbye Days by Jeff Zentner
  4. The Year After You by Nina de Pass
  5. Enchantée by Gita Trelease
  6. Henry and the Guardians of the Lost by Jenny Nimmo

It was hard to narrow down which books to feature from some of the titles I received over the Christmas period, but I think these ones are some of the best books I got! What books are you starting the year with?

kayleigh

 

snailycanflyy Book Award 2018

Last year, I hosted my first snailycanflyy Book Award, where I narrowed down my top books of the year, and after a fab reading year the award is back for 2018! Last year saw some tough competition from some amazing books featuring amazing authors and illustrators with the overall winner being the very worthy The Goldfish Boy by Lisa Thompson which still stands out as one of the best books I’ve ever read!

The award is split into three categories – Best Picture Book, Best Middle Grade and Best Young Adult, with a winner in each category and an overall winner. The criteria is simply that it has to be a five-star rated book published in 2018 and one that I want to talk about, one that has stuck with me since reading and one that I would recommend wholeheartedly. So, without futher ado, here are the category nominees:

img_4075

BEST PICTURE BOOK:

Oscar the Hungry Unicorn – Lou Carter, Nikki Dyson
The Bear, The Piano, The Dog and the FiddleDavid Litchfield
Ruby’s Worry – Tom Percival
Space Tortoise – Ross Montgomery, David Litchfield
The Story Orchestra: The Sleeping Beauty Jessica Courtney-Tickle

BEST MIDDLE GRADE BOOK:

The Truth PixieMatt Haig
Death in the Spotlight – Robin Stevens
The Eye of the North – Sinead O’Hart
The Light Jar Lisa Thompson
The Secret Seven: Mystery of the Skull – Pamela Butchart

BEST YOUNG ADULT BOOK:

I Was Born For ThisAlice Oseman
To Kill a KingdomAlexandra Christo
LegendaryStephanie Garber
Sunflowers in FebruaryPhyllida Shrimpton
The Exact Opposite of OkayLaura Steven

AND THE WINNERS ARE…drumroll please!

oscar the hungry unicornBEST PICTURE BOOK
Oscar the Hungry Unicorn

death in the spotlightBEST MIDDLE GRADE BOOK
Death in the Spotlight

to kill a kingdomBEST YOUNG ADULT BOOK
To Kill a Kingdom

OVERALL WINNER
The Truth Pixie

A massive congratulations and thank you to all of the authors who’s books made it to the shortlist! All of these books are so incredible and I’ve loved reading them in 2018!

kayleigh

 

My Year of Audible: 2018

It’s scary to think that I’m already over halfway through Blogmas 2018! Today I am going to share with you some of the audiobooks that I have loved this year; although I’ve not listened as frequently lately, I have got some brilliant audiobooks this year!

The Goldfish Boy – Lisa Thompson narrated by Leon Williams

The Truth Pixie – Matt Haig narrated by Matt Haig

Notes on a Nervous Planet – Matt Haig narrated by Matt Haig

The Kissing Booth – Beth Reekles narrated by Cynthia Holloway

I Was Born For This – Alice Oseman narrated by Aysha Kala, Huw Parmenter

The Exact Opposite of Okay – Laura Steven narrated by Laura Aikman

Legendary – Stephanie Garner narrated by Rebecca Soler

To Kill a Kingdom – Alexandra Christo narrated by Jacob York, Stephanie Willis

Daughter of the Pirate King – Tricia Levenseller narrated by Marisa Calin

Although I haven’t got around to finishing listening to all of these, I have loved the freedom of having an Audible membership and having some wonderful titles added to my audiobook library!

Have you listened to any of these, or are there any you’d recommend?

Six for Sunday: 4th November 2018

Hello and it’s a very early morning (for me) welcome to this week’s Six for Sunday (you can find the prompts here)! This week’s topic is:

Dream panels/events

I actually found this prompt a little tricky to think of, especially as I’ve just woken up. So, I’m going to put a slight twist on it and go for the six authors I’d most love to meet!

the goldfish boy1.  Lisa Thompson

I feel so bad for how much I have tagged Lisa in all my fangirling over The Goldfish Boy, and am so grateful to her for sending me the beautiful French and Spanish editions, that she’s top of the list of authors I’d love to meet!

2. Stephanie Garber

The Caraval series is just amazing, and Stephanie seems like such a lovely person that I’d love to have the chance to meet her!

3. Robin Stevens

I’d love to go for bunbreak with Robin Stevens and chat all things murder mystery!

sunflowers in february4. Phyllida Shrimpton

Sunflowers in February has been one of my favourite books this year, and Phyllida seems so lovely on social media that I’d love to get to meet her!

5. Maz Evans

Admittedly I haven’t read her books yet, though I recommend them…but she seems hilarious and like she’d be good fun!

6. Giovanna Fletcher

Who wouldn’t? She’s adorable and everyone says how lovely she is to meet!

Which authors would you most like to meet? Have you met any of the ones I’ve listed?

Six for Sunday: 28th October 2018

Hello! Today’s topic has been a really interesting one; so many amazing books have come out in the past couple of years since I wasn’t a teenager anymore and I really wish that I’d had when I was younger. It’s also interesting to think about what you would’ve liked back then. Anyway, you can find the prompts for Six for Sunday here, and this week’s topic is:

Books you wish you’d had as a teen

the exact opposite of okay1. I Was Born For This – Alice Oseman

the truth pixie2. The Exact Opposite of Okay – Laura Steven

the goldfish boy3. The Truth Pixie – Matt Haig

4. The Goldfish Boy – Lisa Thompson

5. Worries Go Away – Kes Gray

6. A Court of Thorns and Roses – Sarah J Maas

It was actually really hard to narrow down! Would you have liked any of these books when you were a teen?

Six for Sunday: 7th October 2018

I haven’t done one of these for a while…I’m sorry! Welcome back to one of my favourite tags on the internet – Six for Sunday (you can find the prompts here!). I’m actually keeping up with Blogtober too which I am very surprised about! What an excellent topic to get back into S4S with this week with:

Best debut books

There are so many amazing debuts out there, but I will narrow it down to six which absolutely stand out for me!

1. To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo

Still in the running for Best YA Book 2018, this amazing debut all about sirens and pirates is still getting lots of praise, and very deservedly! I LOVE IT!

2. Sunflowers in February by Phyllida Shrimpton

Another fantastic debut from 2018 which is up there is this title, focusing on life and death in a warm and moving way.

3. Murder Most Unladylike by Robin Stevens

Always guaranteed to get me out of a reading slump is this incredible series which started as a debut author and has just gone from strength to strength. A must read for all murder mystery fans!

4. The Exact Opposite of Okay by Laura Steven

Another one that’s in the running for Best YA Book of 2018 is this hilarious yet important title about the culture of slut shaming, feminism and just the awkwardness of being a young adult that I think everyone can relate to.

5. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J.K.Rowling

It wouldn’t be a list of the best debuts without Harry Potter featuring. It’s a phenomenon. It’s Harry Potter. I need not say more!

6. The Goldfish Boy by Lisa Thompson

I saved this until last because it’s the first book that came to mind when I saw this tag. Are you surprised to see this on here? You shouldn’t be. Without a doubt, this is one of the best debuts I’ve EVER read. 

Have you read any of these? Would you have included any other titles?

An Audiobook Is Still A Book

I’ve always loved audiobooks, and used to have to listen to them every night to get to sleep. From collecting cassette tapes when I was little, to having a Walkman and taking them on the go, audiobooks have been an important part of my love of books. More recently, I have discovered Audible where I have downloaded some of my favourite titles to listen to when reading just isn’t an option.

I’ve seen a lot on Twitter about how there are people out there who don’t think that listening to audiobooks counts as reading (an important discussion that was raised by Jenn) and I could’t agree more with her about how audiobooks are just as valid! Whether it’s because you’re on the go, absolutely exhausted or have a condition such as dyslexia, listening to an audiobook can be the best option and it’s still reading!

My favourite audiobooks growing up were the abridged Enid Blyton ones – I adored (and still adore) all the boarding school and adventure stories, A Series of Unfortunate Events and Captain Beaky. I rediscovered my love of audiobooks last year with the Harry Potter series (how could you not?!) and have kept downloading since!

So, what are my top audiobook recommendations if you’re new to audiobooks, or just want to find something that you may not have listened to yet?

  • Obviously Harry Potter by JK Rowling. Jim Dale and Stephen Fry are both amazing narrators too (although I believe it’s only Stephen Fry on UK Audible). Plus, IT’S HARRY POTTER.
  • Caraval by Stephanie Garber, narrated by Rebecca Soler. This is one of the first books I downloaded on Audible, and I couldn’t have chosen anything better; Soler is a brilliant narrator.
  • Reasons To Stay Alive by Matt Haig, narrated by Matt Haig. Aside from being an incredible book that everyone should read or listen to, Matt Haig makes for easy listening and breathes life into his book.
  • The Goldfish Boy by Lisa Thompson, narrated by Leon Williams. This is my latest download which I was so unbelievably excited to discover, and so far I am loving it! Williams is doing justice to an amazing book.

What do you think – do audiobooks count as reading a book? What recommendations would you make?

Six for Sunday: 5th August 2018

HELLO FROM DISNEYWORLD!

I couldn’t resist checking in for Six for Sunday this week! You can find the second half of the year’s prompts here! This week’s is:

Authors you’ll always pick up

1. Sara Barnard 

2. Lisa Thompson

3. Jenny Nimmo

4. Jennifer Niven

5. Sophie Kinsella

6. Cliff McNish 

Problems of a bookworm…lots of authors who’s books I will automatically pick up! Have you read any of these author’s books (if not, check them out!) and who are your top authors that you’ll always read books by?

Mental Health Awareness Week 2018: Book Recommendations

So, this is after all a book blog and so I would like to spend some time recommending my favourite books that deal sensitively and effectively with mental health. If you want to almost guarantee that I pick up a book, just add that it’s got something about mental health – I’m sold! Here are some of my favourites:

The Goldfish Boy – Lisa Thompson
OCD

You can’t really get away from how much I love this book if you follow me on social media! The Goldfish Boy is a middle grade mystery where the main character Matthew has Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and it’s honestly the best portrayal of OCD that I’ve ever come across. Obviously OCD affects people differently, but for me this book was perfect as mine manifests in the same way as Matthew’s. What surprised me most is that it’s not an own-voices book; Lisa has done such an incredible job of writing about OCD.

A Quiet Kind of Thunder – Sara Barnard
Anxiety

For people with anxiety, this book is perfect to show you that you’re not alone; it’s an illness that can strike anyone, can be totally out of the blue, but it is something that you can survive and it’s okay to have bad days; “Little victories are everything.” There are wonderful people out there who will help you and support you.

Girl in Pieces – Kathleen Glasgow
Depression/Self Harm

Girl in Pieces is filled with such raw emotion, but not to the extent that it is an uncomfortable or triggering read, and, although this is an extreme case of depression/self-harm, it’s one that sheds a very realistic light on the issue. For people who have experienced this, the book is inspiring and easy to relate to, but equally it’s enlightening for people who do not know much about the mentality behind self harm and suicide.This book shows how you can hit rock bottom but it IS possible to carry on and survive despite all the stuff that life can throw at you.

Thirteen Reasons Why – Jay Asher
Depression/Suicide

This book is controversial, but I’m firmly in the camp of people who LOVE it. Whilst I do appreciate the flaws that people mention, for me the book is more about how the things people say and do can impact so much on others rather than about the suicide and morals of the tapes. It’s about knowing how the little things we do can have a massive effect on other people; you never know what’s going on in someone else’s life.

See You In The Cosmos – Jack Cheng
Schizophrenia

The first book I’ve come across that deals with schizophrenia, this is one that’s completely unputdownable! Whilst the subject of mental health isn’t the main focus of the book, we see the effect that someone’s mental health can have on those around us.

All The Bright Places – Jennifer Niven
Bipolar

All I will say is have a box of tissues handy if you’re planning to read this one! One of my favourite ever books, All The Bright Places totally deserves all the hype surrounding it although it will break your heart. Whilst coming across as a book about suicide, it focuses on the effects of bipolar disorder.

I Was Born For This – Alice Oseman
Anxiety

This one subtly tackles the topic of anxiety and of how utterly terrifying a panic attack can be; whilst mental health isn’t at the forefront of the book, it’s definitely an underlying theme.

Under Rose-Tainted Skies – Louise Gornall
Anxiety

A beautiful own-voices novel, Under Rose-Tainted Skies has such a fantastic representation of anxiety and agoraphobia. It shows just how debilitating living with anxiety can be and how it’s not simply a case of being a bit of a worrier.

Worries Go Away – Kes Gray
Anxiety

One of my absolute favourite picture books, the story is simple enough that for younger children it helps them to open up about things that are worrying them, but it’s also so good and meaningful that older children and adults who suffer from worries or anxiety can relate to the little girl and the feelings she’s experiencing and learn how to cope from this book too.

We Are Young – Cat Clarke
Depression/Suicide

We Are Young touches upon the devastating effects that depression and bipolar can have. Cat Clarke writes about mental health issues perfectly, and We Are Young is no exception.

The Red Tree – Shaun Tan

Depression

This stunning picture book is another of my favourites; I love the illustrations and it’s such a beautifully depicted story of depression which shows the ups and downs.