Thrillers

Review: The Passengers, John Marrs

(Summary and cover from the publisher’s website)

image.jpg
The Passengers, John Marrs, Del Rey Books

 

Category

Thriller

 

Pages

416 pages (paperback)

 

Summary

When someone hacks into the systems of eight self-drive cars, their passengers are set on a fatal collision course.

The passengers are: a TV star, a pregnant young woman, a disabled war hero, an abused wife fleeing her husband, an illegal immigrant, a husband and wife – and parents of two – who are travelling in separate vehicles and a suicidal man. Now the public have to judge who should survive but are the passengers all that they first seem?

 

Rating

9 / 10

 

Review

Continue reading “Review: The Passengers, John Marrs”

Book List · Library Reads · Non classé

Library Reads / Number 1

Hello fellow readers!

I love books. By now, this shouldn’t be much of a surprise. But another thing is that I’m a student. And who says student also says 1) broke; and 2) doesn’t have much room to keep books. Also, for me, there’s the eventuality of 3) might have to take all of these books back home someday (boy, I’m not looking forward to that).

The solution to these problems? A simple word: library. You might have noticed with my last post that I adore libraries, and it would be a space I’d like to work in. For now, though, I just spend a lot of time there (they have AC, which, right now, is a godsend), studying, reading, writing or just people-watching. And, of course, I borrow books! Because these books are free. So, in honour of the library that became sort of my home-away-from-home, here is a little compilation of the books that I’m currently burrowing. Rest assured that, though I tend to borrow a lot of books at the time, I’m always on time to give them back 😉

Any of these you’ve read? Any that you’re interested in? Let me know!

image1.jpeg
Yes, when I said a lotI did mean a lot.

I don’t know about you, but I’m always surprised by how good and new these books look! I’m more used to library books that look well-read and well-loved, this is a nice change (though I don’t have anything against more used books, of course). I’ll include a short summary and cover picture of all books – unless otherwise mentioned, these come from Goodreads.

The Young Adult

26036953.jpg
Whisper to Me, Nick Lake, Bloomsbury Publishing

“Cassie is writing a letter to the boy whose heart she broke. She’s trying to explain why. Why she pushed him away. Why her father got so angry when he saw them together. Why she disappears some nights. Why she won’t let herself remember what happened that long-ago night on the boardwalk. Why she fell apart so completely.

Desperate for his forgiveness, she’s telling the whole story of the summer she nearly lost herself. She’s hoping he’ll understand as well as she now does how love—love for your family, love for that person who makes your heart beat faster, and love for yourself—can save you after all.”

530 pages

Continue reading “Library Reads / Number 1”

Others

Being a Summer Reading Challenge Volunteer

logo_2x-e10e33bd15a4357fc60de0691d56e3aa.png

 

Hi fellow readers!

If, like me, you live somewhere in the United Kingdom and are a frequent visitor of your library (please be one! Libraries are amazing!), you might have seen posters appear, promoting the summer reading challenge.

But what is the summer reading challenge? Well, as you might have guessed, it’s a challenge aimed at children (most of the participants are between 5 and 10) to keep them reading during the summer holidays. Exciting, isn’t it? We didn’t have anything of the sort back home, and when I heard about it a couple of weeks ago, and heard that libraries were looking for volunteers, I quickly applied.

The thing is, Children’s Libraries are often very, very busy. In mine, there are rhyme times, storytelling times, and, of course, the regular young customers who always have an enquiry. This means that librarians don’t always have the time to promote and help with the summer reading challenge. But fear not, that’s where the volunteers appear!

The role of the volunteers is to encourage children to sign up for the reading challenge (it’s free, it’s fun, you can read whatever you want, there is a nice medal at the end; those are the best-selling arguments), to get them talking about what they like reading and what books they’ve already read, to actually sign them up, and to give them the prizes and stickers that they get when they’ve read a certain amount of books. In some libraries, you might also help with shelving books (I do in mine during quiet times, which is lots of fun, except for my knees and lower back), creating displays, and sometimes even helping librarians with activities.

As long as you speak English, even if it’s not perfectly, that you feel comfortable working with children, and that you’re between 13-24 years old, you can apply for a volunteering role. I believe that most libraries have now closed the applications, but it’s always worth dropping in and asking if there’s still some room for more volunteers – I’m pretty sure they won’t refuse!

I’ve now worked a few days as a volunteer. You’re encouraged to work 1-2 hours shifts, but as the library has AC, and my room doesn’t, and as I really do enjoy working with kids, I more often than not stay 5 or 6 hours. Of course, it’s not always busy, and it’s good to have a book with you for quiet times (that being said, being in a library has some advantages if you forget your book…), and to ask librarians whether there’s anything else you can help them with. Also, if, like me, you’re a pretty shy person, the first days are a bit awkward, up until you realise that children will rarely bite you, and that they don’t much care about your accent or grammar mistakes. I’ve met some adorable children, passionate about reading and ready to talk about their favourite books for hours. It’s also been good to discover the ”backstage” of a library, and interesting to see how librarians actually work – I was pretty surprised to learn that most librarians don’t do more than an hour shift with kids, so they don’t get too tired!

In summary, if reading is your thing, and you don’t mind spending time with children, I can only encourage you to sign up and help! Librarians will be very grateful, and I can promise it’s also a good experience as a volunteer. Not only does it add to your CV, it also helps you become more confident and patient!

The website https://readinghack.org.uk has some more info on volunteer roles if you’re interested, and you can also take a look at the official reading challenge website – this year, it’s all about space, and you’ll find it at http://www.spacechase.org.uk

Space_Chase_Cover_illustration_CR.jpg

 

Book List

5 Not-So-Famous LGBTQ+ YA Novels

Hello everyone!

Let me start this post by saying that I’ve read most, if not all, of the books that are typically suggested when someone looks for Young Adult LGBTQ+ novels. I’ve read them and I’ve liked them, so this is absolutely not a criticism of these novels.

But let us be honest for a while. I feel like every time I’m looking for some new LGBTQ+ stories, the same old ones appear. Aristotle and DanteSimon and the Homo sapiens AgendaMore Happy Than NotCarry On. These are all incredible novels, and if you haven’t read them yet, I can only recommend you do it now! However, I love hearing about the not so well-known novels, those that don’t have the same number of reviews as, say, Carry On has on Goodreads.

So there it is – a gift to myself and every other reader who’s looking for representation: a list of five not-so-famous LGBTQ+ YA novels. Some of these I’ve read; some are on my ”read it as soon as possible” list (it’s quit a long list, unfortunately). Feel free to drop more in the comments; I’ll add them on the list and credit you for it!

 

41553972._SY475_.jpg
Proud, short stories compiled by Juno Dawson, Stripes Publishing.

Continue reading “5 Not-So-Famous LGBTQ+ YA Novels”

Young Adult

Last Bus to Everland, Sophie Cameron

43307357._SY475_.jpg
Last Bus to Everland, Sophie Cameron, Macmillan Children’s Books

Category

Young Adult; LGBTQ+; Fantasy

Pages

288 (Paperback)

Summary

“Brody Fair feels like nobody gets him: not his overworked parents, not his genius older brother, and definitely not the girls in the projects set on making his life miserable. Then he meets Nico, an art student who takes Brody to Everland, a “knock-off Narnia” that opens its door at 11:21pm each Thursday for Nico and his band of present-day misfits and miscreants.

Here Brody finds his tribe and a weekly respite from a world where he feels out of place. But when the doors to Everland begin to disappear, Brody is forced to make a decision: He can say goodbye to Everland and to Nico, or stay there and risk never seeing his family again.”

Rating

6/10

Review

Do you love Peter Pan? Do you love diverse characters? Then this book is made for you!

Continue reading “Last Bus to Everland, Sophie Cameron”

Horror · Young Adult

Review: Frozen Charlotte, Alex Bell

23357071.jpg
Frozen Charlotte, Alex BellRed Eye

 

Category

Young Adult; Horror; Thriller

Pages

342 (Paperback)

Summary

“Dunvegan School for Girls has been closed for many years. Converted into a family home, the teachers and students are long gone. But they left something behind…Sophie arrives at the old schoolhouse to spend the summer with her cousins. Brooding Cameron with his scarred hand, strange Lilias with a fear of bones and Piper, who seems just a bit too good to be true. And then there’s her other cousin. The girl with a room full of antique dolls. The girl that shouldn’t be there. The girl that died.”

Rating

9/10

Review

Continue reading “Review: Frozen Charlotte, Alex Bell”

One Month, Many Books

One Month, Many Books: May 2019

Hello everyone!

Once again, May was a pretty full month in terms of the number of books I read, since I read nine of them!

I’m slowly (but surely) getting back to reading some YA literature, especially stories featuring LGBT+ characters. At the same time, I’m still in love with horror stories (ah, the irony of being too chicken to watch a horror movie, but love horror books…). Some thriller, non-fiction and even science-fiction books were also read (and, for the most part, enjoyed!) during this half-sunny, half-rainy month of May: who doesn’t love the British weather?

But enough talking for now, let’s talk about everyone’s favourite topic: books! And I’ll start with my personal favourite of the month.

My Favourite

Columbine, Dave Cullen

44086916

Non-Fiction

“What really happened April 20, 1999? The horror left an indelible stamp on the American psyche, but most of what we “know” is wrong. It wasn’t about jocks, Goths, or the Trench Coat Mafia. Dave Cullen was one of the first reporters on scene, and spent ten years on this book-widely recognized as the definitive account. With a keen investigative eye and psychological acumen, he draws on mountains of evidence, insight from the world’s leading forensic psychologists, and the killers’ own words and drawings-several reproduced in a new appendix. Cullen paints raw portraits of two polar opposite killers. They contrast starkly with the flashes of resilience and redemption among the survivors.”

Rating: 10/10

Continue reading “One Month, Many Books: May 2019”