December Wrap Up 2019

So, this is my final wrap up for 2019 and I didn’t read as many books this month as I had hoped but I did read one massive book!

Murder at the Dolphin Hotel – Helena Dixon (3 stars)

This was an ARC I received from Bookouture and I was worried that maybe I had over-saturated myself with murder mysteries by the time I got to this book but thankfully this wasn’t the case. This book kept me wanting and with each chapter ending it drew me into the story more and more. That being said I don’t really think the main female protagonist was really framed as the main character and that author spent more time on our secondary male protagonist which was a bit disappointing.

The Eye of the World – Robert Jordan (5 stars)

This was a book that I put down to focus on the ARCs that I had been approved to read. Going into it I was worried that it was too out of my comfort zone, I had heard it compared to The Lord of the Rings which was not my favourite series so I was worried I would feel the same way which to be frank was boredom! But thankfully, that was not the case at all. What I found was an intricate world, layered characters and exciting plot that made me start theorising everything.

Spinning Silver – Naomi Novik (3 stars)

A loose re-telling of Rumpelstiltskin that drew me in with it’s beautiful imagery and varied female characters. While it drew me in from the beginning I can’t say that it remained that way, the writing was beautiful yet slow paced and the momentum I had gained at the beginning just fell away about 3/4 in. But I can’t deny that the female characters were amazing!

Hills Like White Elephants – Ernest Hemingway (3 stars)

I went for an average rating here as I have to be honest. I had no idea what this story was about. It was 4 pages of confusion! A weird way to end the year!

Spinning Silver Review

Miryem is the daughter and granddaughter of moneylenders, but her father’s too kind-hearted to collect his debts. They face poverty, until Miryem hardens her own heart and takes up his work in their village. Her success creates rumours she can turn silver into gold, which attract the fairy king of winter himself. He sets her an impossible challenge – and if she fails, she’ll die. Yet if she triumphs, it may mean a fate worse than death. And in her desperate efforts to succeed, Miryem unwittingly spins a web which draws in the unhappy daughter of a lord. Irina’s father schemes to wed her to the tsar – he will pay any price to achieve this goal. However, the dashing tsar is not what he seems. And the secret he hides threatens to consume the lands of mortals and winter alike. Torn between deadly choices, Miryem and Irina embark on a quest that will take them to the limits of sacrifice, power and love.

Click the title to read my thoughts on this book!

20 Books I Would Like To Read in 2020!

I wanted to talk about the books I plan on trying to prioritise in 2020! These are not full of new releases as I mentioned in my November 2019 Releases post, I have no idea what new releases are coming out at all. So there aren’t many new releases on my list. These are just books that would want to get to next year.

Click the title to read more!

The Series I Plan To Re-read in the Future.

2018 has probably been my best reading year to date. So far I have read 31 books beating my target of 22 and I still have one book left that I want to read in the last 2-3 weeks left of December. Now that we are nearing the end of the year I want to look forward and start planning books I would like to read in 2019 and while that post will be coming in the following weeks. This post is a bit different.

The books in this list are a mixture of series I have completed and want to read again and series I started reading a couple of years ago but never finished, with this series I would start with re-reading the books I had already read and then continuing where I left off.

The reason this isn’t in my 2019 plan is that I wouldn’t be able to finish all of these series in one year as well as reading other books. This is more of a plan to cover the next 2 or 3 years. First up…

  • Series: Harry Potter
  • Author: J.K Rowling
  • Status: Currently Re-reading 
  • Last Book I Read: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
  • No. of Books: 7

I decided early this year that I wanted to re-read the Harry Potter series. I have tried so many times to re-read the series, which I first read when I was 11, but I always gave up when it got to “Goblet of Fire”. The last time I tried to tackle this series I was 14 and got to the First Task chapter of the 4th book. Since then I have been listening to a variety of Harry Potter themed podcasts and it’s reignited my love for Harry Potter and the desire to re-read the series. One of the other main reasons was that I couldn’t remember much about the series from “Goblet of Fire” onwards especially not “Half-Blood Prince” and “Deathly Hallows” so I wanted to re-jig my memory and read the series through older eyes. 

So far I have read; “Philosopher’s Stone”, “Chamber of Secrets” and “Prisoner of Azkaban”. I loved the “Philosopher’s Stone” as it brought back a lot of fond memories for me and I loved the “Chamber of Secrets” due to the murder mystery element to it. My opinion of the book actually changed due to the re-read, I love it a lot more this time around. I liked “Prisoner of Azkaban” but didn’t love it. It was still very good but I just wasn’t drawn into the world as much as I was with the other two books. My plan is to read “Goblet of Fire” next year and carry on the series. After I read Harry Potter I will then begin to re-read…

  • Series: Percy Jackson and the Olympians
  • Author: Rick Riordan
  • Status: Finished series
  • No. of Books: 5

I got this series a couple of Christmas’ ago after my dad and I watched the movie and I loved it so much I asked for the books for Christmas and boy was I shocked by how bad the movies were. Those movies were the epitome of “the book was better”. I was always a massive fan of Greek Mythology and the idea of mixing modern day and ancient gods together blew my mind!

I finished this series nearly 5 years ago and remember loving it but that’s the only thing I can remember about these books as I have completely forgotten what happens in this series. The movies can’t help you as they were so badly done and there were only 2 made! So one of the reasons I wanted to read this book was to remind myself about what happens.

Another reason is I remember loving it so much! This series to me was one of the first series where I realised that there wasn’t just Harry Potter out there. I didn’t think I would ever find a series that would match my love for Harry Potter and yet here we are.

  • Series: The Heroes of Olympus
  • Author: Rick Riordan
  • Status: Need to finish
  • Last Book I read: The Mark of Athena (Book 3)
  • No. of Books: 5

You are going to see a lot of Rick Riordan in this post, just to make you all aware. I was really scared reading the Lost Hero as I thought I wasn’t going to love it as much as I loved the previous series. I wasn’t sure if I was going to like the new characters and I wasn’t sure what direction this book was going to go. I was relieved when I finished this book that I loved it just as much as I loved the original series and to me, it felt fresh and new, not using recycled storylines which was what I feared it was going to include. 

I haven’t finished this series, when I was reading the third book, “The Mark of Athena” the last book came out and I saw loads of spoilers posted by fans so I wasn’t really interested in finishing the series as I now knew the outcomes. So my plan is to re-read the first three books which I have already read first just so I can remind myself what is happening and then continue from there.

  • Series: The Trials of Apollo
  • Author: Rick Riordan
  • Status: To be read
  • No. of Books: 3

So I haven’t actually read the Trials of Apollo series. I haven’t even read one book. The reason this series is in the list is it’s continuation of the same world that “Percy Jackson and the Olympians” and” The Hereos of Olympus” series are in and I know that big things happen to characters introduced in the previous series’ so I feel like I need to complete this world as it’s not the end of the journey for Percy and other characters, hence why this series is here.

  • Series: Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard
  • Author: Rick Riordan
  • Status: Need to finish
  • Last Book I read: The Sword of Summer (Book 1)
  • No of Books: 3

I read this book two years ago during the summer holidays when I first decided I was going to focus on reading more. It was one of the first books I ever logged into Goodreads. To me this book was not Rick’s best work but I still enjoyed it regardless. I love Rick’s stories and imagination and to be honest I don’t know much about Norse Mythology so it would be nice to learn more about it as well as finishing this action-packed trilogy.

  • Series: The Chronicles of Narnia
  • Author: C.S. Lewis
  • Status: Currently Re-reading
  • Last Book I Read: The Magician’s Nephew (Book 1)
  • No. of Books: 7

I have had the entire book series standing on my book-shelf for I don’t know how long! I read up to “The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe” but haven’t read any of the following novels. During December I like to read smaller books just to amp up the numbers on my Goodreads reading challenge so I decided to pick up the Magician’s Nephew in the hopes of a quick read. That book is left unfinished at it was quite dull. I am hoping when I re-read the next book I won’t be so disappointed. I mainly wanted to read this series as I love this world so much, I watched the first 3 movies and adored them and I want to continue being in this world. 

  • Series: Agatha Christie’s entire collection.
  • Author: Agatha Christie
  • Status: Need to Finish
  • Last Book I Read: The Murder on the Links (Book 2 in the Hercule Poirot Series)
  • No. of Books: To many to count

I have watched adaptations of Agatha Christie’s work since I was about 10. I have the whole box set of every episode of the Hercule Poirot TV series but I have only ever read 3 of her books. Two which were from her Hercule Poirot series and one which was a standalone story. I want to read Christie’s work because I love her imagination and genius. Having watched everything unfold on the screen I would love to now watch it unfold on the page. I also love the fact that there are so many books and I want to challenge myself to read all of them. I love a challenge.

So there you have it. Quite a lot of books to get through. The next book I will be reading starting Monday will be The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien.