Ten Books You Recently Added To Your To-Be-Read List // Top Ten Tuesday

So it is Tuesday again and since I had such a great response to my last attempt at this wonderful meme, courtesy of Broke and the Bookish: http://www.brokeandbookish.com/, I thought I would do another. And this weeks is: ten books you recently added to your TBR list.

I am quite an organised person, I currently have 9 notebooks 4 of which are planners not to mention a load of calendars and post-it notes around my room. I think I was told I was too unorganised as a child and now I really am! So my point I have a list of books I want to read! And so this Top Ten was really rather easy!

Here are the 10 books I have added to my TBR List recently:

1.   Fairest by Marissa Myer
 

Yes, I know I still haven’t read ‘Scarlet’ or ‘Cress’ but I really want to, and I am planning on doing so eventually. This book is 3.5, it is a short novella in between Cress and the soon-to-be-released ‘Winter’. It is a story about the evil queen Levana, and sounds great! Looking forward to purchasing this pretty little book!

2.   Legend by Marie Lu
 

I always see this book on Bookshelf Tours, my favourite kinds of Youtube videos, and so whilst I don’t know anything about it I would have added it to my TBR list in the hope of reading it soon!

3.   The Ruling Class by Peter Barnes (Play)
 

This play is currently on stage in Trafalgar with James McAvoy at the protagonist. A friend of mine works with a ticket company and has seen this play a load of times, met James McAvoy just as frequently which make me incredibly jealous but she also showed the book of the play and within reading a few pages I was hooked on it! I just love one of the quotes within it: ‘How do you know you’re God When I pray I’m speaking to myself.’ How genius is that!

4.   Peter and Alice by John Logan (Play)
I was going through quite a play phase recently, as I am now going through a poem phase, and this was a play that really peaked my interest. Set around the meeting of Alice Liddell and Peter Llewelyn Davis, the two children behind the inspiration for Alice in Wonderland and Peter Pan, this book sounds beautiful as well as fascinating.

5.   The Art of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson
 

I think I have blabbed enough about this book recently, it just sounds amazing! I can’t wait to read it.

6.   All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
 

This book is being likened to Fault in our Stars and whilst I wasn’t the greatest fan of The Fault In Our Stars and I am interested to reading this novel for its own merit, and also because the cover is gorgeous!

7.  Chopsticks by Jessica Anthony and Rodrigo Corral
 

I saw this book in Waterstones recently and it hurt to put it down! I am not the largest fans of graphic novels, it is something I would like to get into more, but I really loved the look of this book. It was beautiful.

8.   Cinderella by Charles Perrault, illustrations by Camille Rose Garcia
 

Having recently seen the movie for this book see my review at: http://www.mystudentstyle.co.uk/cinderella-review/ I am in love with this fairytale once more. I kind of grew up away from the traditional Disney shows I watched all of them but I preferred live-action adaptions and musicals like ‘A Slipper and the Rose’ one of my favourite films! but I’ve surprisingly never read the original story, and having seen the cover of a lately printed version I really want to!

9.   Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
 

This book has been raved about from here to high heaven! Even George R.R. Martin said it was his favourite book of 2014 and it does sound truly amazing! It is about a group of Shakespearean actors who are performing King Lear when one of the actors drops dead of this mysterious plague that then sweeps the earth. It sounds fascinating!

10. Sleeper and the Spindle by Neil Gaiman, Illustrations by Chris Riddell
 

This book is another fairytale adaption there is a theme running here and it is a cross between a novel and Graphic novel. I have read ‘Stardust’ by Neil Gaiman and whilst I wasn’t blown away by it, I am interested to read some of his other works and this one has just caught my interest as it is described as a cross between Sleeping Beauty and Snow White!

There we have it. My Top Ten Recently Added Books to my To-Be-Read List. What do you think? Any of these books peaking your interest, or are they any others you could recommend? Let me know, and have ago at this week’s Top Ten! It’s good fun!

Happy Reading!

March Wrap-Up // Wrap-Up & TBR

So I know I am a little early with the wrap-up but I have so many essays and revision to do that I’m not going to read my current book for a week, at least, so here goes:

The Wrap-Up

1.   The Chronicles of Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C.S.Lewis

 
I was enjoying the book series of Narnia but this book dragged a little for me. I gave it 3 out of 5 stars on Goodreads but I was surprised when I saw many reviews saying it was everyone’s favourite tale of the series. I thought it had too many tales in it, almost like a book of short stories but with the same characters as such. Still good but easily forgettable for me.

2.   I Truly Lament by Mathias B. Freese

 
Speaking of short stories this book was sent to me by the author and very kindly so. For a full review check out my blogpost about three weeks ago. I really enjoyed this collection and would recommend it to anyone with an interest in the Holocaust and short stories!

3.   The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

 
I loved this book. Favourite book of the year so far! I could blub with how much I adored it but I shan’t, because I already have. In a review I posted last week! Go and check that out for full details of my undying devotion to this book! (OkI am well aware how cheesy that paragraph sounds, but what can I say: it’s that good!)

4.   The Two Towers: The Ring goes East by J.R.R.Tolkien

 
I am making my way, slowly but surely, through the Lord of the Rings set and I was happily surprised with how much I enjoyed book 4. It is definitely one of the shortest of the six, but the story focuses entirely on Frodo, Sam and Gollum as they make their way across the dead marshes and to the Black Gates, gripping, heart-breaking and scary in places! Really enjoying this series!

5.   The Monster Calls by Patrick Ness

 
Finally for a book that excelled my expectations: The Monster Calls! Brilliant. I knew roughly what this book was about from other reviews it involves a boy whose mother has cancer and a monster that comes and visits him at night it is slightly scary, surreal and very moving, but what is equally as gripping about this book is the narrative by Patrick Ness. This is my first Ness novel, and it didn’t disappoint, but technically this story is by Siobhan O’Dowd who unfortunately passed away before she could finish it (I believe she wrote the first few pages before she passed, also of cancer) Very moving story highly recommend!
So that is the Wrap-Up, now for the slightly ambitious TBR. Be aware I am in the middle of essays at University as well as work and home-time for Easter! I never get that much reading done when I have a load on my plate so: small books!
 

The To-Be-Read List
1.   My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece by Annabel Pitcher

 
I am currently about a 1/5 of the way through this story and whilst I can’t say it is gripping me, it is certainly interesting me. It is about a boy whose sister was killed in a terrorist attack when he was 5 and 5 years later how his family his drunk father, cheating mother and the twin sister of Rose, the sister that died are coping. I’m looking forward to seeing how this ends!

2.   The Return of the King: The War of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkien

 
I am so close to getting to the end of this series, I am determined to finish it before I finish University! Next book takes me back to the other members of the Fellowship of the Ring and their adventures and battles at Gondor!

3.   The Art of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson

 
Even I don’t finish this book next month I hope to start reading this story about a transgender boy called David! Sounds really interesting and has rave reviews!

4.   Constructed of Magic by Louis Alan Swartz

 
A book I’ve been sent for review, full of poems I think this will be an interesting and inspiring read, particularly since I need inspiration with a poetry module I am taking for University. I’ve been loving poetry lately I hope I love this collection to. I’ll let you know in my review!

 

There we have it, for this month. I hope you enjoyed, and let me know what you’re reading or have read this month.

 

Happy Reading!

 

(PS. I do reply to all comments left on my blog page but for some reason they don’t appear for everyone to see I do see them and I do respond but make sure to check your emails as that is where the message turns up!)

 

 

Book Haul // Haul


I realised recently that I hadn’t done a book haul in a whileand that is partly because I haven’t bought a book in a while! Shocker! I have been seriously piled with work lately and my bank budget isn’t as healthy as I’d likebut I have recently gone out and spent some of my hard-earned time and Waterstones points and picked up some books!



These include:

16 of the Little Black Penguin Classics! I have 8 and then I went and bought 8 more: So I have now got:

1.   John Ruskin: Traffic

2.   Walt Whitman: On the Beach at Night Alone

3.   John Keats: Eve of St Agnes

4.   Hans Christian Anderson: The Tinder Box

5.   Edgar Allan Poe: The Tell-Tale Heart

6.   Jane Austen: The Beautiful Cassandra

7.  Samuel Taylor-Coleridge: Well they are gone, and here I must remain

8.   Charles Dickens: The Great Winglebury Duel

9.   Elizabeth Gaskell: The Old Nurses Story

10. Charles Perkins Gilman: The Yellow Wallpaper

11. Samuel Pepys: The Great Fire of London

12. Wilfred Owen: Anthem of Doomed Youth

13. Sophocles: Antigone

14. Emily Brontë: The Night is Darkening Around me

15. Kate Chopin: A Pair of Silk-Stockings

16. Brothers Grimm: The Robber Bridegroom

There we have it. 16 out 80and counting. (The ones in italics are ones I bought a few days ago) I hope to collect them all over the next few weeks as all together the entire collection of £64 and that really isn’t that much for what you get! And they’re so beautiful! I adore them! I really do!

Okmoving on from my strange adoration of short stories/critiques/plays and poems. To a relatively new novel that is creating a stir:

-      The Art of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson


First of allthe cover is brilliant. If I didn’t know the subject matter already, I think I could guess. The story is about a boy called David Piper and I love jacket description

“David Piper has always been an outsider. His parents think he’s gay. The school bully thinks he’s a freak. Only his two best friends know the real truth David wants to be girl.”

That has so much power and tells me so much already that I want to high-five David, or give him a hugI don’t know him that well, yet. I cannot wait to start reading this book!

-      The Mousetrap and other Plays by Agatha Christie

 
I found this sweet little collection in a local charity shop and I thought ‘why not’. I watched the Lee Evans/Nathan Lane film of Mousetrap when I was younger but honestly all I remember is grown men chasing mice, which I generally think is the premise but apparently it is very funnyso I look forward to reading this.

-      The Last of the Mohicans

 
Another story I have heard about and know of the movie with Daniel Day-Lewis but I’ve never read. I found this lovely little classic book in a ‘Books for Free’ shop so I didn’t pay, obviously. But it is pocket-sized which means it will be great on a train journey one dayI hope so at least!

-      Constructed of Magic And other poems on the Immortality of the Human Spirit by Louis Alan Swartz

 
I was sent this book for review so watch out for that in the next few weeks from the lovely Lisa in America. I am currently studying poetry at University and I am enjoying reading and listening to a lot of poetry at the moment. I didn’t realise there were quite so many types romantic classic poetry, World War One, Swartz work which is contemporary poetry with a spiritual twist and even slam poetry, which is a new love! (Check out the link below to watch my favourite poem of late: Denice Frohman!  Warning: Swearing and Adult topics- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5frn8TAlew0&list=WL&index=17)

-      Burma and the Jade Tree by Robin H. Meakins

 
Another book I’ve been sent to review. I need to get on with reading this book! It is a historical novel about an Anglo-Burmese pilot during the retreat from Burma filled with pictures, historical facts and a narrative this should be an interesting read.

-      I was here by Gayle Forman

 
Quite easily the bargain of this whole haul! I went into my trusty charity shop and found this beauty, recently released this year, for 50p. Good quality and perfect for my upcoming time-off! Very happy to have discovered this, and I look forward to reading it!

So there we have it. A slightly odd book haul, with quite a few review books to read and some little stories to get throughit’s going to be an interesting few weeks of literature I think!

Let me know what you’re reading and if you like the look of any of these books!

Happy Reading!

The Fault in Our Stars // From Page to Screen


From Page to Screen: 4

Today’s Book to Film choice is:

THE FAULT IN OUR STARS

by John Green

I don’t think it is a false accusation to say that this has to have been one of the most talk about books of 2014, if not the most. It is a book loved by millions and has since turned into a book equally as loved by millions.

The book was released in 2012 with the film adaption following suit incredibly quickly in July 2014.

The cast included:

-      Shailene Woodley Hazel Grace Lancaster

-      Ansel Elgort Augustus Waters

-      Nat Wolff Isaac

-      Willem Dafoe Peter Van Housten

I was late to the bandwagon with this book, I hadn’t even started to book blogging when the movie came out! My sister took me with her as she refused to go alone and ‘cry like a larry’. I would have happily gone on my own I am not afraid to weep like a champion!

Movie Review

SoI saw the movie first. And yes I did cry, I enjoyed it and you cannot help but get attached and feel the stupid ‘fate-l’ consequences! My favourite scene: the bench scene in Amsterdam when Gus tells Hazel the bad news It was so simple and well-actedI sobbed. Not as much as my sister who had to hide her face in my coat!

Whilst the movie is fundamentally a sob-fest because of the subject matter it is also a film/book of questions and points that remind us that even when life is short it can be full! The movie does well at using humour and irony to put across that these children/young adults dying of cancer are human beings that have lives outside of cancer. Snaps to the actors! This is one of my favourite Shailene Woodley’s performance, I cannot say I am huge fan of her work elsewhere, not because she isn’t good but because I just haven’t been fond of the other films including Divergent *gasp* but this isn’t that series if you would like to hear my views on that please go to: http://www.mystudentstyle.co.uk/insurgent-review/

Fault in our Stars is a very good movie. It is also a very good movie adaption.

Book Review

I think there was three notable missing things in the film to the book and that is:

-      Caroline Gus’s girlfriend who had previously died of cancer

-      Katelyn Hazel’s best friend

-      And a scene in which Gus is seen fighting with his mum before he goes to Amsterdam with Hazel and her mum.

These are very minor subtractions and don’t take anything from the plotbutI have to now mention the book and I didn’t enjoy it as much as I hoped.

Whether this is because I saw the movie first or because of the hype I am not so sure, but I know that when it came to reading ‘Fault in our Stars’ by the end it felt like an obligation. I didn’t mind John Green’s writing style, I wasn’t a huge fan however, I also didn’t mind the plots twistsand-turns, it was still very moving but I didn’t care as much as I did in the film.

I may have just alienated half of my YA audience of readers since I have just insulted the ‘bible’ of YA fiction and ‘Divergent’ in one blogposts, but in my personal opinion the film was better.

I liked the story, I loved the humour and emotion Isaac and the trophy scene is a close second favourite and I liked the fact that I could go and see a movie with my sister in which we both sobbed and both enjoyed that is a rarity for us! All in all, I like this story, but I preferred it visually to imaginatively.

Let me know your thoughts and feelings!

Happy Reading!

 

The Night Circus // Review


The Night Circus

Review

 
Author: Erin Morgenstern is an author and multimedia artist, from Massachusetts America. The Night Circus was her debut novel in 2011 and since has since to publish another book.  She was rejected by more than 30 literary agents before signing with Doubleday and publishing The Night Circus which has since become a bestseller and won numerous awards.

Rating: *****

Review:

I loved this book. It is the first book of the year, for me, that has made me excited to leave University to come home to read this book! I had a bulky, hard-back verion and it lumped it with me wherever I went, regardless of how heavy my bag already was, simply because I sometimes couldn’t bear to part with it! I loved it!

The story has a fairy-tale/fantasy feel to it, as the story revolves around Celia Bowen and Marco Alisdair in a challenge that they are pulled into at a very early age. The challenge is set in this Night Circus which is the Circus of Dreams. That is a very basic description of the plot as there are about ten other main characters, as well as a several plot twists, different narrators and set changes.

The story is set from 1860s until 1903 fundamentally in London, but since it is a circus the scene changes to Prague, New York, Germany etc all the time. The magic of it is that these places do not have much detail at all, the most descriptive place is the Circus and by the end of the novel you will know quite a few of the nooks and crannys of the setting.

Can I just say as well: How gorgeous is the cover!
 
It is a beautifully written, easy to picture and absolutely fantastic to immerse yourself in. I could picture the Ice Garden, the Labyrinth and the Cloud Maze with such ease that it is hard to imagine that such places don’t exist. Morgenstern, who wrote the book on a whim, holds together an intricate narrative cleverly so that even when it is confusing the characters are confused as well as you, so it feels like its right to be confusing!

The characters are well-developed and the ending is suitable, whilst not all of the events of the book is explained it isn’t necessary, in my opinion, and works well with that hint of mystery.

I would definitely recommend this book to people with vivid imaginations and who like to immerse themselves in books because this book is wonderfully enchanting and interesting to follow!

I also know, from the authors website, that Summit Entertainment have bought the film rights for this book, so I can only hope they create a movie soon worthy of the book although  I will go to see it regardless! Just to see this circus come to life!

(Tip: to enjoy this book even more I recommend you watch ‘Cirque Du Soleil: World’s Away’ alongside it. It is on Netflix and I watched it a few days before I read the book and it made it so much easier to imagine the circus and the characters as I have never been to a circus before! Just a tip though I believe the book will be just as magical without it!)

Happy Reading!