Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Latest Reads


So here we go, the first official blog post since my return! I was pondering on what to write about for my first post back and I finally came to the conclusion that I would share with you all of books that I have read most recently.
Originally, I wanted to list all the books that I have read since July, however I realised just how many I have read and how long the post would be! So I decided that I would show you the books that I have read the past couple of months.
I will share with you the short description on the back of the book and then my personal views on the story and author. Hope you enjoy!

Goodbye for Now - Laurie Frankel

'Sam Elling works for an internet dating company, but he still can't get a date. So he creates an algorithm that will match you with your soul mate. Sam meets the love of his life, a coworker named Meredith, but he also gets fired when the company starts losing all their customers to Mr. and Mrs. Right.
When Meredith's grandmother, Livvie, dies suddenly, Sam uses his ample free time to create a computer program that will allow Meredith to have one last conversation with her grandmother. Mining from all her correspondence - email, Facebook, Skype, texts - Sam can construct a computer simulation of Livvie who can respond to email or video chat just as if she were still alive. It's not supernatural, it's computer science.
Meredith loves it, and the couple begins to wonder if this is something that could help more people through their grief. And thus, the company RePose is born. The business takes off, but for every person who just wants to say good-bye, there is someone who can't let go.
In the meantime, Sam and Meredith's affection for one another deepens into the kind of love that once tasted, you can't live without. But what if one of them suddenly had to? 
This entertaining novel, delivers a charming and bittersweet romance as well as a lump in the throat exploration of the nature of love, loss and life (both real and computer simulated). Maybe nothing was meant to last forever, but then again, sometimes love takes on a life of its own.'

This was just one of those books that I couldn't put down!! I honestly never wanted it to finish and was so sad when I finally turned the last page. I really loved all the characters as they all had very unique personalities - the sort that you feel very attached to! Laurie Frankel did a really good job with the story-line as you always seemed to know what the character was thinking, even if it didn't say, and she kept the action intense throughout. Along the way there were a few unexpected twists which added to the dramatic story. I did really enjoy this book and will definitely revisit the characters again.

The Small Hand: A Ghost Story - Susan Hill

'Returning home from a client visit late one evening, Adam Snow takes a wrong turn and stumbles across the derelict old White House. Compelled by curiosity he decided to enter, only to be repelled when he feels the unmistakable sensation of a small hand creeping into his own. This is just the beginning of a series of odd experiences.'

Wow! What a story! The journey that Adam Snow takes is a long and mysterious one and along every step of the way is visited by the 'small hand'. The book was very well written and the series of events that took place were in a very clever order. You may recognise the author, Susan Hill, as the very successful writer who produce 'The Woman in Black'. She is well known for her unique story-telling of ghosts and supernatural forms. I was actually surprised how much I enjoyed this book, as I usually do not read ghost stories, but it captivated me from page one and I am extremely glad that I read it.

Another Way to Fall - Amanda Brooke

'What would you do if you could write the story of your life?
After battling a brain tumour twenty-nine year old Emma thinks she is in the clear, but her world comes crashing down around her when she is told her fight was in vain, and there is nothing more the doctors can do.
Realising that she won't now have time to achieve the things she dreamed of, Emma decides to write her perfect life in a story. She imagines all the things she would have done, the places she would have seen, the husband she would have shared her life with and the family they would have raised. And, mysteriously, as she writed her story, she starts to notice that some of her dreams seem to be coming true.
Now with a real love in her life, and her fading hope burning brighter, reality and fiction start to become blurred. As she writes their life-long love story Emma dares to believe that anything is possible, but can she really change her life?'

This is such a beautiful book. The story of brave Emma really puts the importance of life into perspective and how short our time on this earth is. I was shedding some tears by the end as I had become very attached to all of the characters, especially Emma. Amanda Brooke is a very talented author and I am definitely planning on reading another of her novels. They way that she writes really lets you imagine that you are there, in the story, watching Emma go through her pain and struggle. The book also shows us the war that cancer patients go through, and how heart-breaking it is if the don't make it. They are all so incredibly brave and I fully respect them all. I seriously recommend that you read this book, as it can put into perspective what things are truly important in life.

Three Women - Marita Conlon-McKenna

'Kate Morgan is about to celebrate twenty five years of marriage to Paddy. But the secret she has kept all this time is about to be discovered.
Erin Hopkins has always known that she is different from the rest of her family. Over the years she has begun to put the pieces together and now she has to discover who she really is and where she comes from.
Nine Hopkins has always put her marriage and family before everything. But now she must face up to the truth as her daughter is prepared to run off and search for a woman she doesn't know.
There is no escaping the past. Kate, Erin and Nina all have to come to terms with what happened so many years before, and to find their own way of dealing with it.'

I really enjoyed this book as I loved the story-line that carried the characters. I think that Marita Conlon-McKenna did an excellent job of portraying the characters' personalities and thought the way that she kept swapping the narration between the three women was very clever and helped you to learn more about the characters and their thought-process. The only thing that I would say I didn't really enjoy about this book was the fact that the ending was quite predictable. At the end of a book I prefer to be surprised at the final chapter, or so caught up in the story that I don't even notice or think about the end. But overall I did enjoy reading this novel and I think that it portrays some very good morals.

Where We Belong - Emily Giffin

'Marian Caldwell is a thirty-six year old television producer, living her dream in New York City. With a fulfilling career and satisfying relationship, she has convinced everyone, including herself, that her life is just as she wants it to be. But one night, Marian answers a knock on the door... only to find Kirby Rose, and eighteen year old girl with a key to a past that Marian thought she had sealed off forever. Marian's perfectly constructed world - and her very identity - will be shaken to its core, resurrecting ghosts and memories of a passionate young love affair that threaten everything that has come to define her.
For the precious and determined Kirby, the encounter will spur a process of discovery that ushers her across the threshold of adulthood, forcing her to re-evaluate her family and future in a wise and bittersweet light. As the two women embark on a journey to find the one thing missing in their lives, each will come to recognise that where we belong is often where we least expect to find ourselves - a place that we may have willed ourselves to forget, but that the heart remembers forever.'

This novel is quite similar to the last, in the fact that it is about a young women who is looking for their birth mother and creating a wonderful relationship with this women who they have never met before. However, I found this story to be a lot more interesting as there were many unexpected twists in the story and new relationships blooming throughout. I became quite attached to Kirby and I thoroughly enjoyed watching the thought-process of Marian as her past unfolded in front of her. I would definitely recommend this book as I think that it is a lovely story and I really loved getting to know the characters and their intricate lives.

The Loner - Josephine Cox

'Young Davie Adams is all alone. Devastated, he flees his hometown of Blackburn to escape the memories of the worst night of his life. With little more than the shirt on his back he sets off on a lonely, friendless road, determined to find his father.
Two people are stricken by his departure - Judy, his childhood friend who is desperate to reveal a secret she has kept close to her heart for so long, and Joseph, his grandfather, who is racked with guilt about that fateful night.
Exhausted and afraid, Davie finds friendship and a place to stay but when fate deals him another disastrous blow, he must decide whether to keep running or return to face his demons...'

This is the book that I am currently reading, however as I am only a chapter away from the end I thought that I would add it on to the end of this list. I have thoroughly enjoyed this book and the characters that all play important parts to the sorrowful story of Davie Adams. The character that I feel most connected with is Judy, although I understand how much pain Joseph and Don - Davie's father - goes through. I am excited, yet sad, to come to the end of this marvelous novel written by a very talented writer, Josephine Cox.

So there is my list of the books that I have read most recently. I hope that you have enjoyed seeing what types of books I enjoy and have been inspired to read one of these fantastic novels. I will be back on Friday to post about the wonderful world of Disney.

Keep sweet!
Bethany x

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