Friday, 17 July 2015

Recent Reads #1

Recent Reads #1

Reading has always been a hobby of mine, I suppose a lot of people read books frequently but I never give myself a break in between reading. If I finish one then I am straight onto reading the next. Personally I do not have a preference on what genre I prefer, I read different types of novels, from short stories to poetry, it always allows me to use my imagination and learn something new. As I consider myself a bit of a bookworm I thought I would do a post on some of the recent books I have read. 

Jamaica Inn // Daphne Du Maurier
Du Maurier is one of my all time favourite authors and I am just a couple books short of owning her entire collection. There is usually a Gothic edge to her stories which make you tense as to what might happen on the next page. As well as her wonderful details to the surroundings of the characters you just feel like you have been transported and are standing in the midst of the story. Set in the nineteenth century, Jamaica Inn is a pub in Cornwall which has an eerie feeling to it, the pub is still up and running today if you fancied a visit. The story follows a young woman called Mary Yellan who has to move into Jamaica Inn to live with her aunt and husband. Although it is an inn, it is never open to the public and Mary grows suspicious of her aunts husband. She discovers that he is a part of a group who are called wreckers, in which they trick ships into rocks and soon after kill all the survivors so that they can steal all of the goods on the ships. If you like Gothic novels then you will enjoy reading this especially to try and work out who the person is in charge of these wreckers. 

Twilight // Stephenie Meyer 
I have seen all of the Twilight saga films, throughout which was the tough choice of Team Edward or Team Jacob (I never did make up my mind) but I can tell you I never was a big fan of Bella in the films, her infatuation kind of made her into this weak love sick teenager that never seemed to have a lot of inner strength (apart from when she turned into a vampire). I make it clear I hate watching films to things before reading the book, because when you go to read the book after instead of using your own imagination of what they look like, I always seem to see the actors playing the characters. So all I could see really was Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson being all mushy. But I saw I had this book at the bottom of my shelf and realised I had never actually read it. I thought maybe I might like Bella a little more, I was wrong. Maybe it is because I am a bit older now reading this type of love story but I just was not really captivated by it. There are certain parts which I found good to read but I guess the whole Bella wanting to become a vampire just perplexes me. It seems a little foolish that at such a young age she finds her first love, he happens to be a vampire and then automatically she wants to be one. I feel like saying to her come on love, give it some time you don't even know this guy yet, don't be so needy and worried about getting old. I understand the whole fantasy that this creates but for me I didn't enjoy it that much. 

To Kill A Mockingbird // Harper Lee
If there was a reading list that was made for everyone to read, then this book would have to be on it. Throughout school and even at university this book was never in my education, so I read it on my own free will and fell in love with it. I read it a few years ago but as Harper Lee's second book was set to be released I bought To Kill A Mockingbird to refresh my memory. Following the Finch family, Jem, Scout and there father Atticus, it is based in a little town Maycomb, Alabama set in the 1930s. Without giving too much away with the plot line the main reason this book is widely known and studied is because of its dealing with serious issues. Atticus Finch is a lawyer defending a black man who has been accused of rape, it focuses on the racial inequality of the time but also gender roles. The story is told from little Scouts point of view and whilst she and her brother grow up in this town they become more educated in racism and stereotyping that is going on around them. The back story is there fascination with a reclusive neighbour who they try many times to see but fail, it sets up a wonderful mysteriousness to the novel which urges the reader to find out what happens next. Honestly if you haven't had the chance to read this then make sure you add it to your list. 

Bad Feminist // Roxane Gay
When reading a book about feminism you can read something and instantly feel united because other women have gone through the same thing. What I love about this book is it faces the modern day pressure of whether or not you are a good feminist? These different essays have been compiled together to create a really interesting book to read. From the first page I was hooked and soon after hysterically laughing at the words Roxane Gay had written. She challenges rap/hip hop music and asks you to really listen to some of the words in these songs which are incredibly disrespectful about women. Women get called bitch or ho in every other sentence and are usually sung about in a sexually explicit way. Yet you can find yourself singing to the song and it being your summer anthem because it has such a catchy tune, we all remember Blurred Lines don't we?. For me as much as I understood some of the challenges of being a woman I found it really interesting from Roxane's point of view how she personally has had to deal with racial problems throughout her life too. Modern day media is brought up in her book from The Hunger Games to Fifty Shades of Grey and how women come across. The message this left me with was that I can be a feminist but I don't have to fit into this ridiculous notion of what some people think a feminist is. You can wear make up, wear feminine dresses and be cute whenever you want, at the end of the day you just want to be treated as an equal and have equal rights. This isn't a typical feminism book, you will feel anger, sad and confidence, but above all you will laugh a lot.

Those are some of the most recent books I have completed and my thoughts on them. Like I said I tend to read different stories and mix genres up so that I am not reading similar things at the same time. 

What have you been reading lately? Anything you would recommend? Let me know in the comments!

Have a great weekend ☺
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1 comment

  1. I read the Twilight novels and thought they were okay at the time, but this was quite a while ago :) I recently got to kill a mockingbird too and I'm looking forward to reading that :)

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