November Wrap Up

Hello my fellow Book Dragons!

Well it has been another busy month with lots of studying and assignment writing as well as the normal day job keeping me busy.

Not as many books read this month but hopefully in December it will increase because I have loads of books I want to read.

 

Books Read (Click on the Titles to be taken to the review):-

 

 

The Janus Stone by Elly Griffiths

Venus and Adonis by William Shakespeare

A Very Murderous Christmas by various.

 

Total page count this month:- 656

Year page count:- 14,017

 

Happy reading!

lady book dragon signature 250w

Music and Reading

Hello my fellow book dragons!

Over the last few days I have been pondering something that happens to me and I was wondering if it happens to any of my fellow readers.

As a musician music is a massive part of my life and so is reading and often the two go together as I do like to listen to music and read at the same time. However, when I reread a book I notice I associate certain parts of the book with certain songs. This happens the most when reading Harry Potter. When I first discovered the Harry Potter series I was visiting my sister in Scotland and read the books on the car journey to and from her house. At this time I also had a massive Linkin Park addiction and so now whenever I read one of the first four Harry Potter books I think of certain Linkin Park songs.

Now this evening whilst teaching one of my flute students I also had the same experience. My student is currently learning a piece I performed at university and had to write a massive essay on comparing 4 different performances of the same piece. This meant for weeks I was constantly listening to this piece, I was also commuting back and forth to university on the train and when I wasn’t writing essays on the train I was reading Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy. Now when I hear this piece I think of the book and it brings back very nostalgic memories of one of my favourite books.

This happens a lot with me whilst reading and I was wondering if anybody else experienced it or similar situations? I would love to hear your thoughts. Please drop me a comment.

lady book dragon signature 250w

p.s My cat Lyra wanted to feature in the photo as well but wouldn’t keep still.

Goodreads Summer Reading Challenge: Reflection

Summer is officially over so I thought it high time to reflect on my Goodreads Summer Reading Challenge. Sadly I did not complete it but I did learn a few things. Here is the result.

Good as gold:- The Casual Vacancy by J. K Rowling

The Book is Better:- The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt

On the bandwagon:- The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Attwood

Short and sweet:- The Turn of the Screw by Henry James

Actually want to read:- Jaws by Peter Benchley

Not from around here:- Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden

In a friend zone:- The Silent Companions by Laura Purcell

Wheel of format:- Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare

Past love:- Matilda by Roald Dahl

Armchair Traveler:- A Room with a View by E. M. Forster

 

First of all I spent way too much time on a book I really regret reading which was The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt, I really wish I had just stopped reading it because I did not enjoy it and wasted a great deal of my free time reading a book I found tiresome. This is a lesson I keep telling myself to learn from but sadly I don’t, maybe this time I will.

The second thing I learned was I hated having a reading list! I want to read these books eventually and I had options but I found myself regretting the choices and wanting to read other books which I did and so did not complete the challenge in the allotted time. I think from now on I will avoid challenges and just choose whatever I want to read when I want because I really did not enjoy the challenge. I loved choosing the books but not feeling like I had to read them.

However, doing the challenge has taken a few books off my enormous TBR list, so it wasn’t all bad.

 

What does everyone think of reading challenges? Yes or No? I would love to hear your thoughts.

Happy reading.

lady book dragon signature 250w

 

 

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood (Review)

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

38447

About the author

114074_v9_ba.jpg

Margaret Atwood born 18th November 1939 is a Canadian author, poet, essayist and literary critic. She has written numerous fiction and non-fiction books, books of poetry and children’s books. She has won the Giller Prize in Canada, Premio Mondello in Italy and the 2000 Booker Prize. She was also awarded the Asturias Prize for Literature in 2008.

Blurb

The Republic of Gilead offers Offred only one function: to breed. If she deviates, she will, like dissenters, be hanged at the wall or sent out to die slowly of radiation sickness. But even a repressive state cannot obliterate desire – neither Offred’s nor that of the two men on which her future hangs.

Review

This has been on my TBR pile for a very long time and this summer I put it on my reading challenge to make sure I read it. Now please bare with me on this review because I think it might prove controversial.

I did enjoy the book and found the idea of it rather terrifying at times but I must admit for me it did not have the WOW factor. The main reason for this I think is the way it was written, at times I found it frustrating how it kept flitting from past to present all the time. I would have much rather had more of the present rather than the past because I found the bits from the past broke the narrative up for me. I understand why Atwood did this but for me it really did not work.

I enjoyed the story and the concept was good and well thought out but I just can not understand what all the hype is about. I was left underwhelmed and wondering if I had read the same book as everyone else. However I was left wanting to know more at the end of the book so I am very pleased that I have purchased the sequel and will be starting to read it now, I just hope it will be a better read.

I liked the characters but I would have liked more from them, I just could not connect with them and I just felt frustrated and wanting more. I must admit this book took me a long time to read because some days I just could not be bothered with it and for me that is never a good sign and why I only gave the book 3 out of 5 Dragons. The reason it did not get lower was because I was left wanting more. However I do not think I will be reading this book again.

Purchase Links

Waterstones

Book Depository

lady book dragon signature 250w

wHe2KO4rTfOWOFWu5hjV%A.jpg

 

The Turn of the Screw by Henry James (Review)

The Turn of the Screw by Henry James

23175315

About the author

159.jpg

Henry James, born 15th April 1843, was an American-British author. He is best known for his novels dealing with social and marital interplay, in his later years his novels became more experimental. He passed away in February 1916.

Blurb

A very young woman’s first job: governess for two weirdly beautiful, strangely distant, oddly silent children, Miles and Flora, at a forlorn estate…An estate haunted by a beckoning evil.

Half-seen figures who glare from dark towers and dusty windows- silent, foul phantoms who, day by day, night by night, come closer, ever closer. With growing horror, the helpless governess realizes the fiendish creatures want the children, seeking to corrupt their bodies, possess their minds, own their souls…

But worse-much worse- the governess discovers that Miles and Flora have no terror of the lurking evil.

For they want the walking dead as badly as the dead want them.

Review

This was the last book I completed on holiday and to be honest it was a massive disappointment. I just could not get on with James’ writing style and found the whole story to be extremely boring.

The story centres around a young woman who is hired to be the governess of two young orphans. The uncle of these children does not want to know anything of their upbringing or of any problems, he wants to live his life to the full unhindered by these children. The governess goes off to a large country estate to look after these children and she immediately starts to hear and see strange things.

Now my first reaction was that this governess is very young for such responsibility and inexperienced. Her imagination could easily be running wild, and turning the sounds of an old house into something more. The housekeeper does not help instead of giving the girl a good shake she just blindly accepts what the governess is saying.

Then the two ghosts start to appear that only the governess has seen but she is convinced the children have seen them too but the children are not afraid of the ghosts.

At times I did wonder and still do whether all of this was in the governess’ head because it just was not a very convincing gothic horror story. It just felt forced and sloppily written, and there were certain things that got on my nerves, for instance why did she just ignore that the boy was expelled from boarding school, why did she not found out why he was expelled or find him another school? The only good point was the description and setting the scene of the gothic style manor house.

The final straw was the ending which just annoyed me no end and just confirmed to me that the book had been a massive waste of my time, I was just thankful it was rather short. I gave this book 1 out 5 Dragons.

Purchase Links

Waterstones

Book Depository

Details of book I read

Page count: 124

Format: Kindle

lady book dragon signature 250w

Mini update

Hello my fellow book dragons.

I just thought I would do a little update on what I have read so far whilst on my holibobs.

Some are on the summer reading challenge list some are not.

Awaken the Darkness by Dianne Duvall

I read this on the plane and really enjoyed it.

Jaws by Peter Benchley

Loved this so much!

Fireside Gothic by Andrew Taylor

This one I borrowed off Lord Book Dragon and it was a nice discovery. I definitely plan on reading more by Andrew Taylor

The Turn of the Screw by Henry James

Hmm still not sure on this one. Just could not get on with Henry James’ writing style.

I’m about to start reading The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt.

Reviews will follow next week when I’m home and back to my laptop.

Happy Reading.

Maui

Hello my fellow book dragons!

It might be a little quiet at the moment because Lord and Lady Book Dragon are currently on holiday in Maui.

The good news is that Lady Book Dragon is doing a lot of reading by the pool and on the beach. There will be a lot of book reviews going up once we are safely back home. Lady Book Dragon has even had to borrow one of Lord Book Dragon’s books to read as she was struggling to find reading material!

But for now enjoy a few snaps of our hols.

Happy reading.