The Yearning by Mohale Mashigo

The Yearning by Mohale Mashigo

July 21, 2016 South African Fiction 0

The Yearning is the debut novel of South African author, Mohale Mashigo. It tells the story of Marubini,  a young African girl who is living a beautiful  and fulfilled life, working at a prestigious wine farm, living in beautiful Cape Town (the most beautiful city in SA, please don’t argue with me) and is involved in a steady relationship with her French restaurateur boyfriend. Her life sounds perfect, until the past she didn’t know about starts affecting her present. Mohale gives us insight into Marubini’s life by telling not only her present story, but stories of her childhood in flashback chapters. Of her relationship with her father and grandfather, who has passed when she was young and still feels the loss of them greatly in her present life.  Her tight knit relationship with her grandmother are also being explored as the only woman in her life who was prepared to be honest with her about her past/heritage. “Grief is so elusive, just when you think the worst is over, it comes back again to remind you how empty your life is without the person you lost” – page 45 Marubini starts suffering from nightmares and seizures, episodes that leaves her to… Read more »

Divider

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes {book and movie review}

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes {book and movie review}

July 1, 2016 Fiction, Movie Reviews 16

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes is that book that everyone swears you have to read. I’m always wary of the book hype, as I’m scared I’ll be disappointed. I have a friend who likes movie-date ultimatums: “You can’t watch the movie with me if you haven’t read the book!”. This happened with The Hunger Games, The Count of Monte Cristo and various other books. So when she said the book had her in tears, I agreed to read it, because I needed a good cry.   The Book: I read the book and got really into it about a quarter way into the book and couldn’t put it down. I finished it on a Sunday morning at 3am sobbing. The book broke my heart and I got the much needed good cry I needed. Normally I would describe what the book is about and give my opinion when I write a review, but then thought “Who doesn’t know what this book is about?”. Everyone I know has read it, but if you haven’t and still want to read the book before you see the movie (which I recommend you do), please don’t read the next paragraph, because it will… Read more »

Divider

A Perfumer’s Secret by Adria J.Cimino

A Perfumer’s Secret by Adria J.Cimino

May 16, 2016 Adult Fiction, Fiction 6

There are two things in this world that I love and that brings me so much joy in life and that is books and fragrance. Give me both in one, like Adria did with A Perfumer’s Secret and I’m a happy person. Her latest novel is a tale of family secrets, betrayal, love and a heavy dose of fragrant descriptions that will delight and awaken the senses even of a person who aren’t as passionate about fragrance as I am. Zoe is a young perfumer; living in New York, who finds out that she has inherited something of ‘olfactory significance’ from a family she thought didn’t exist.  Her mother has passed away when she was only a teenager, who told her that they had no family left. Of course, because of curiosity she travels to Grasse, France to learn more about this family, but the biggest drawing factor for her, as a perfumer, was the mention of the inheritance. She also learns, not exactly surprisingly, that she is from a well-known perfumer family. Zoe finds that the inheritance is the formula of a fragrance that her mother has worn for years, every day of her life. But the formula was… Read more »

Divider

The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon

The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon

May 9, 2016 Adult Fiction, Fiction 4

I first learned about The Winter People from Allison, whose review really made me want to read the book, but I completely forgot about it, until she posted her top 5 mystery novels. It was the first week where we had a little bit of cold weather (rain!) and I was looking for a ghost story that would provide just enough creep to satisfy my craving for such a novel, without going too deep into the horror territory. The Winter People was just that. It’s not a horror story, but it’s definitely creepy. It plays off in two time periods, a century apart. Sara first learned about sleepers (dead people brought back to life) when she was nine years old and because of her inquisitive nature she asked her ‘Auntie’ about it, who promised to tell her everything she knows about sleepers, but she only needs to use this information when she really needs it. Present time we have Ruthie, who lives with her little sister and mother, Alice, in Sara’s old house. When her mother goes missing and they are on a quest looking for her, Ruthie chances upon Sara’s diary.  Sara who died a few months after her daughter… Read more »

Divider

5 WWII historical fiction novels that’s worth a read

5 WWII historical fiction novels that’s worth a read

May 4, 2016 Historical Fiction, Uncategorized 27

  There is no doubt that I’m a fan of historical fiction around war-time and most of what I’ve read is WWII centered.  I’m always looking for new recommendation on the genre and whenever a novel’s blurb says “WWII”, I’m almost 90% likely to read it (including films).  Here are 5 of the WWII novels I’ve read and enjoyed (link to review in titles) Sarah’s Key by Tatiana de Rosnay The novel tells the story of Sarah Starzynski as a  young girl who got arrested with her family in July 1942 during the Vel’ d’Hiv’ roundup where thousands of Jews (including children) were arrested and kept at a velodrome before being deported to Auschwitz. It’s a dual time narrative, where parts of the story also plays off in 2002 while a journalist is researching this harrowing event in French history and takes a special interest in what has become of Sarah. This book had me in a puddle of tears and I highly recommend it. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak The Book Thief is a story set in Nazi Germany during World War II and tells the story from German people’s perspective. What makes the story unique is the… Read more »

Divider

#ReadMyOwnDamnBooks update

#ReadMyOwnDamnBooks update

April 21, 2016 Discussions, Readalongs, Thoughts & Opinions 14

In January this year, I’ve shared with you some of the bookish goals for this year and although many has not been met, I’m glad to say that I’m at least doing okay with the #ReadMyOwnDamnBooks challenge that Andi from Estella’s Revenge started. Reading has been going slowly for me, with only 9 books read up until now, however 6 of those books were my own.  I only intend on reviewing 3 of the 6 books, of which 2 I’ve already reviewed:  Hollow City | The Light Between Oceans.  I have also read Animal Farm by George Orwell, which I most likely won’t review without spilling a whole bunch of political comparisons I’d much rather not make on my blog, but I fully intend on reviewing The Winter People soon. Hopefully with the readathon coming up this weekend, I will be able to read more of my own books, but so far, I’m happy with my progress on this challenge. Are you reading more of your own books this year? And are you going to be participating in the readathon this week?    

Divider

The Light Between Oceans by M.L.Stedman

The Light Between Oceans by M.L.Stedman

April 14, 2016 Adult Fiction, Fiction 14

The Light Between Oceans is the debut novel of author M.L.Stedman.  It’s a beautiful story about love, loss and hope. It’s one of those stories that you can really get lost into and I can understand why so many people loves the book and recommend it so often. It is also the Goodreads choice winner of 2012. It tells the story of war hero, Tom Sherbourne who goes to Australia after serving in the war. He starts a new job as a lighthouse keeper on an isolated “island” called Janus Rock. However, before he leaves to the island on his first term he meets a young lady, called Isabel, quite by chance.  As fate would have it, he runs into her again at a dinner party where he and Isabel strike up a friendship.  Of course, as these stories tend to go, they fall in love. After marrying Isabel, she moves with him to Janus Rock.  They live alone and have no contact with the outside world, except the boatmen that comes to the island every few months with supplies. Life isn’t easy for the pair, as Isabel struggles to have children. After having two miscarriages and one stillbirth, Isabel falls… Read more »

Divider

Hollow City by Ransom Riggs

Hollow City by Ransom Riggs

March 30, 2016 Fiction, Young Adult Fiction 14

Hollow City is the second book in the Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children series by Ransom Riggs. I read the first novel a while after I purchased it, because I thought it would be scary, but it wasn’t.  What was partly to blame for me not picking it up sooner is because I’ve done my research on it: reading book reviews, but mostly going to google to image search the photographs I’ve heard so much about (the images scared me at first). In every book review I read everyone raves about the fact that you have to read this in paperback format, not e-book. I second that. The eerie photographs are fascinating. Hollow City follows the events that happened in the first book, right after the peculiar children have escaped the island, mostly unscathed.  However, their ymbryne*, Miss Peregrine wasn’t so lucky, but they can save her if they can find a loop with an ymbryne that has not been captured by the wights yet.  So they set off to London, which is apparently the peculiar capital. The story is set around 1940 during WWII. They travel through London during the Blitz, which adds a bit of darkness to the events… Read more »

Divider

The Storm Sister by Lucinda Riley

The Storm Sister by Lucinda Riley

February 23, 2016 Adult Fiction, Fiction, Historical Fiction 4

 ~ There might be a few spoilers in this review, so read with caution ~ The Storm Sister is the second book in Lucinda Riley’s The Seven Sisters series. The series, will tell the story of each of the D’Apliése sisters that were adopted by a rich billionaire and named after the Seven Sisters constellation.  More background on the first story can be found in my review of The Seven Sisters, which is the first book in the series and tells the story of the eldest daughter, Maia. The Storm Sisters is about the second daughter, Ally.  With Pa Salt’s death, he left behind a clue of their heritage to each daughter. With this, he wants them to choose whether they want to find out where they come from or not.  Maia’s journey was inspired by circumstances and the same has happened with Ally. Ally, a talented musician and a professional sailor, grew up in Geneva Switzerland along with her other 5 sisters.  With her profession, Ally spends a lot of time at sea and it’s during one of the events after another regatta that she meets Theo, a fellow sailor who she falls in love with.  Her relationship with… Read more »

Divider

Things I want to change in 2016

Things I want to change in 2016

January 22, 2016 Discussions, Thoughts & Opinions 40

I have spent quite a lot of time reflecting on 2015 from a personal and professional viewpoint and although I’m not inclined to discuss the latter on the blog, I will do so for the former. One of the things that I’ve definitely been aware of for a long time is that I’ve neglected my reading and my blog terribly in 2015. Many has posted new year’s resolutions for 2016 and although I’m usually oppose to having resolutions, because I never stick to them, I am most confident in my intentions in sticking to the ones I’ve made for this year. This goes without saying that reading is one. I miss the enthusiasm I’ve had for reading and blogging in 2013 and 2014. I have anxiety and reading has long been my method of relaxing and escaping from stress. In neglecting this hobby of mine, I’ve realized that maybe I’ve had a difficult year in 2015 for precisely this reason, as I allowed myself to stress more and relax less. There are a few things I want to do, not only to blog more, but in general just to make more time for reading and finding alternative ways to handle… Read more »

Divider