Winter Book Haul

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

I got a lot of books over Christmas and so I decided to make a separate post to talk about them. It's a real big mixture but I'm so excited to get my teeth into them! Also compared to last year  my reading speed has definitely increased because of having to read so much for Uni, this means that I can probably read these all in 6 months instead of like 2 years, yeyyy! Here are the books I will be reading across winter, between other books for Uni of course, let's start from the bottom shall we:

Anxiety for Beginners A Personal Investigation - Eleanor Morgan__________________________

"Anxiety for Beginners offers a vivid insight into the often crippling impact of anxiety disorders, a condition that is frequently invisible, shrouded in shame and misunderstood. It serves as a guide for those who live with anxiety disorders and those who live with them by proxy."

This was a gift from a close friend who is actually friends with Eleanor and he thought this would help me a lot, which was really kind. I'm not usually into self-help books about things that are so personal to me but from what I've read already it's written in a really empirical and understanding way and not patronising or clinical at all. I think I'm going to save this one to flick in and out of on my bad days and not read it all at once, I might feel a bit overwhelmed by all the info and I want to be able to apply the things she talks about slowly to my own life. 

Happy Why More or Less Everything is Absolutely Fine - Derran Brown_____________________

"Everyone says they want to be happy. But that's much more easily said than done. What does being happy actually mean? And how do you even know when you feel it?"

This was a thoughtful Christmas gift from my mum to help with my reading for my dissertation. I asked my academic supervisor if I could actually use Derran as a reference seems as some are now saying he's an actual philosopher and she said in proportion, yes. This book also contains so many helpful references to help me review the literature and I always wish for Derran Brown's opinion on anything so it's perfect! It's so strange that one of my favourite philanthropists/incredible-psychic-magic-men writes a book about the thing I'm studying for 8 months. What a spooky coincidence (although Derran would see it as a string of probability and events).     

A God in Ruins - Kate Atkinson _____________________________________________________

"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 is the sequel to Life After Life a book I read about 2 years ago. I really enjoyed Life After Life and I love Atkinson's writing style although it is pretty lengthy and it will probably take me a long time to read. I was also really invested in Teddy, the main character's little brother in the first book. He was my favourite character and the way the last book ended he was just out of his teens so hearing about him being an old man I imagine will be pretty sad and poignant and I love a good poignant read, aw sweet little Teddy!

Go Set a Watchmen - Harper Lee _____________________________________________________

"Maycomb, Alabama. Twenty-six-year-old Jean Louise Finch – ‘Scout’ – returns home from New York City to visit her ageing father, Atticus. Set against the backdrop of the civil rights tensions and political turmoil that were transforming the South, Jean Louise’s homecoming turns bittersweet when she learns disturbing truths about her close-knit family, the town and the people dearest to her. Memories from her childhood flood back, and her values and assumptions are thrown into doubt. Featuring many of the iconic characters from To Kill a MockingbirdGo Set a Watchman perfectly captures a young woman, and a world, in painful yet necessary transition out of the illusions of the past – a journey that can be guided only by one’s own conscience."

I've been in two minds about this book for a while. I've heard some reviews about it that are quite negative and I'm a little apprehensive to  read it because Atticus Finch is one of my favourite fictional characters ever I don't really want to read about him turning into a racist! But Emily got me this copy for Christmas and I am curious to read what everyone else has been talking about and hopefully it's much more positive than what people have been saying. 

Everything Everything - Nicola Yoon__________________________________________________

"Madeline Whittier is allergic to the outside world. So allergic, in fact, that she has never left the house in all of her seventeen years. But when Olly moves in next door, and wants to talk to Maddy, tiny holes start to appear in the protective bubble her mother has built around her. Olly writes his IM address on a piece of paper, shows it at her window, and suddenly, a door opens. Maddy is certainly going to fall"

Because I'm doing a lot of academic and extensive reading for Uni, I wanted to get a few books that were YA because I just find them easier to read. I went into WHSmith to check out the Zoella book club stuff because I watched her video and some of her recommendations looked really interesting, so I picked up 2 because there was a deal on or something. Anyway, I've read reviews of this book and they've all been positive and apparently it's a very unique story line which I'm excited to learn more about.

A Monster Calls - Patrick Ness ______________________________________________________

"Conor has the same dream every night, ever since his mother first fell ill, ever since she started the treatments that don't quite seem to be working. But tonight is different. Tonight, when he wakes, there's a visitor at his window. It’s ancient, elemental, a force of nature. And it wants the most dangerous thing of all from Conor. It wants the truth."

I've actually already read this book this week, I'm going to do a full review of it at some point soon. But let me tell you, it's amazing! So beautiful and poignant and everything I love in a book, it makes you think and feel and cry and laugh and I can't wait to see the film, that's why I read it so fast!

Milk & Honey - Rupi Kaur _________________________________________________________

"The book is divided into four chapters, and each chapter serves a different purpose; deals with a different pain; heals a different heartache. milk and honey takes readers through a journey of the most bitter moments in life and finds sweetness in them because there is sweetness everywhere if you are just willing to look."

I've also already read this book and I can safely say it's my favourite book of poetry I've read in so long. The problem with poetry books that are not put together by the poet is that they don't flow very well and I tend to nip in and out of them. But as soon as I read the first poem I had to keep reading, it's like she learns a new lesson as she writes each piece and it's beautiful and ethereal and magical and real at the same time. I love this book so much and the lessons she learns are lessons that everyone needs to learn at some point. Like the blurb says she shows you that there is sweetness in everything  and it also shows you how much power you have as a woman, although not just women should read this, everyone should! 

Hopefully with my new obtained, fast reading skills I can read all of these during the winter months and have a new pile ready for spring!

Which books are you hoping to read this winter?


  1. I love this selection. Milk & Honey sounds absolutely beautiful - I'll definitely try that! I completely get what you mean about Atticus Finch - I'm quite wary to read it. I like these little tasters you've given and look forward to seeing which books really stand out for you! Monica xx

    1. Yeah you definitely need to read it and it has beautiful illustrations as well! And I know I was going to name my first cat Atticus, but if he turns out to be not very nice in the second book I'll have to re-consider haahaa! Thank you Monica, I'll try and do a full review of all of them once I've read them.

  2. I cannot tell you how much I sobbed when I read A Monster Calls. My word!

    1. Oh god it's so sad, I don't think I've ever cried so much at a book!

  3. Ugh, Milk & Honey is so beautiful. I finished reading it last month I believe, and I have sooooo many pages marked. It was the first poetry book I read, so I was a little hesitant to read it, but I kept an open mind and I loved it. Although there were a few poems that I felt were a little bland and dry, it was a lovely read overall!

    Kathlyn | Kathlyn's Korner

  4. What a great selection! The only one I have is Milk and Honey (even though I've yet to read it!) but the rest all sound like really good reads x

    Sick Chick Chic

    1. Thank you! If you haven't read it yet, save it for a self care day when you're a little down, her advice is second to none.

  5. The best thing about Christmas is definitely getting new books to read. The ones you got sound really good, I would love to read Go Set a Watchman - although I agree with you, Atticus is such an amazing character, I don't want him to turn into a racist. I'll also put Everything Everything on my reading list, since I have started uni I have turned to YA books again because like you said they are easier to read and remind me a bit less of my neuroscience book haha xx

    1. Yeah I am going to read it but I'm still in two minds. And YA is the best while you're doing Uni work, it's so effortless to read and a great way of escapism.

  6. always looking for new books, got a heap over Christmas and for my birthday!

    hopefully will get to try out a few of these! 🤞🏻

    1. It's always good to have a big pile to get you through the winter!