No matter how many books I own, sat unread on my (now-overflowing) shelf, I still cannot resist the temptation to add to my collection and, consequently, to my never-ending TBR pile. There are just too many books in the world that I want to read and not enough time to do so, but of course that doesn’t stop me from browsing the Internet, falling into bookshops or dropping that paperback into my basket while doing the weekly food shop. No matter how many times I tell myself that’s it, this will be the month when I don’t buy any more books, I never seem to be capable of actually keeping up with it. The desire to acquire and own all the books is just too great, and so here I am again, struggling to find space on my shelves for all of the books I have purchased over the last few weeks or so.
I don’t think I’ll ever learn – and to be honest, I think I’m okay with that.
The Book People is one of my very favourite online retailers, and one of the shops that I recommend the most for bookworms on a budget. If there’s anything better than buying new books, then it’s buying new books for a really good price, and when it comes to deals and discounts you can’t really beat The Book People! They do wonderful book bundles and collections, far cheaper than the RRP price, so of course I couldn’t resist adding a couple to my order. I love these new Virago editions of E. Nesbit’s classic children’s books, and as I only own old and rather battered copies from my childhood I just had to have these to add to my collection. The bundle contains the beloved classic The Railway Children, in addition to The Story of the Treasure Seekers, The Wouldbegoods, Five Children and It and The Phoenix and the Carpet – I think some re-reads may be in order! While we’re on the subject of children’s classics, I also purchased Judith Kerr’s Out of the Hitler Time trilogy, consisting of When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit, A Small Person Far Away and Bombs on Aunt Dainty. Partially inspired by Kerr’s own experiences as a child during the Second World War, they really are fantastic historical novels that I think anyone, regardless of age, should read, and I’m very happy to have these beautiful editions for my shelves.
Now for a couple of festive-inspired reads (yes, I’m excited about Christmas already…)! Following the release of the latest Murder on the Orient Express movie adaptation, I had been longing to re-read my favourite Christie classic, so when I saw this stunning new hardback edition for just a few pounds on The Book People’s website it went straight into my basket in a matter of seconds! It really is so beautifully designed and really conveys the cold and wintery tone of the novel, so yet again I’m happy to have another pretty edition for my collection. I also couldn’t resist Judith Flanders’ Christmas: A Biography, a non-fiction exploration into the history of Christmas and the traditions that we obey this time of year. As a bit of a Christmas addict, this sounds right up my street, and I can’t wait to cosy up by the fire and learn a little more about my favourite holiday! Finally, combining my love of cosy crime and Christmas perfectly, I just had to have a copy of Murder on Christmas Eve, a collection of short stories by authors such as Margery Allingham, Val McDermid and Ian Rankin. There’s something about this time of year that really puts me in the mood for cosy crime fiction, so I’ll definitely be getting to this one in the coming weeks, preferably with a mug of something delicious to keep me going!
The BookTube Ones
All of these purchases are completely the fault of one of my favourite BookTubers, Harriet Rosie. They are all titles that she has talked highly of in recent videos, and as I completely trust her judgement and recommendations, I succumbed to the pressure and had a little bit of a spree! I recently read the absolutely fantastic Goodnight Stories for Rebel Girls, a collection of short biographies of inspirational women throughout history accompanied by beautiful artwork, so when Harriet mentioned Women in Science by Rachel Ignotofsky, a book with a similar concept, I knew I had to have it. The illustrations within are completely lovely, and as I know very little about women in space and the industry in general, I’m looking forward to settling down one afternoon and devouring the whole thing in one sitting! While we’re on the subject of illustrations, I picked up a copy of Henchgirl, a graphic novel by Kristen Gudsnuk. I’m very new to graphic novels and have only read a handful, but Harriet has spoken highly of this one in numerous videos so I thought I’d give it a try. The premise sounds such fun and really reminds me of Nimona by Noelle Stevenson, a hilarious take on superheroes and villains, so it’ll be interesting to see how this one compares.
Finally, I’ve been getting more and more into crime fiction over the last year or so, and recently have been in the market for a quick, fast paced thriller that I can speed through in a couple of sittings. Despite hearing many great thinks about Karin Slaughter’s crime novels, I’m yet to give one a try, but having recently heard Harriet discuss Karin’s latest release, The Good Daughter, I was convinced to give it a go. As far as I am aware, this is a standalone physiological thriller set against the backdrop of small town America, and I’ve heard nothing but amazing things about it. I also picked up a copy of Last Breath, the small prequel novella, to go along with it, so I’m finally jumping on the Karin Slaughter bandwagon at last!
The ‘Celebrity’ Ones
I’m not typically one for reading YouTuber books or celebrity autobiographies, but there have been a number of new releases lately that have really caught my eye, so I decided to take a chance and give them a try. When I first heard about YouTuber Connie Glynn’s novel Undercover Princess, a Young Adult boarding school fantasy and the first in the upcoming Rosewood Chronicles series, I just knew I had to read it. I adore anything set in or around boarding schools, and if there is anything to do with magic or princesses then even better! Not only is the cover design so magical, the story itself also sounds fantastic, so as both a reader and a fan of Connie I’m more than happy to have this one on my shelf. Similarly, I’ve been looking forward to YouTuber Dodie Clark’s memoir Secrets for the Mad: Obsessions, Confessions and Life Lessons for a good few months now, and it’s even more beautiful than I anticipated. Packed full with photographs, artwork and song lyrics, as well as Dodie’s personal musings on life and mental health, this is a lovely little book that I’m sure I’ll enjoy dipping in and out of for many months and years to come.
If you live in the UK, I’m sure you’ll be aware of Gogglebox star and Queen of the Jungle Scarlett Moffatt. As one of the funniest characters on television, I’ve enjoyed watching Scarlett and following her career for a long time now, so I thought I’d give her recently released autobiography, Me Life Story: Sofa, So Good!, a read in the hope that it would be just as hilarious as Scarlett herself comes across on the TV. I’ve already read this one and I have to say, it was one of the funniest and most relatable books that I have read in a long time, and has further cemented my love and respect for her. If you’re looking for a book that will make you laugh until you cry, then you definitely need this in your life!
The Bargain Ones
Finally, last but by no means least, a small selection of books that just happened to fall into my basket – completely against my will, of course! – while shopping for other mundane things. I’ve been after a copy of The Illusionists by Rosie Thomas, a historical novel set in 1885’s theatre-land, for a long time now, so when I spotted it on a Christmas decoration shopping trip to my local garden centre for just £2 I snapped it up! Rosie Thomas is a historical fiction author that I’ve heard amazing things about, so I’m really excited to finally read this, as well as its loose sequel, Daughter of the House, if I enjoy it. Another historical fiction purchase, The Betrayal by Kate Furnivall caught my attention while in Sainsburys one day, and as I’m a complete sucker for their book deals I thought I’d give it a read. Centred around two sisters in 1938 Paris, I’m really looking forward to this one, and hope to read it soon. On the same Sainsburys trip I also spotted The Note by Zoe Folbigg, a romance novel inspired by Zoe’s own experiences falling in love with a fellow traveller on a commuter train. This sounds like such a cute read, and I’m especially interested to read it knowing Zoe’s own story, which you can read about here.