Reading My Way Through Summer

So now that university is officially over for me for the summer, it means I can finally start to enjoy reading again as I’m no longer having to read 100+ for lectures every week. Doing that made me actually fall out of love with reading, except when I went home and was away from my uni room…aka the room I did all my prep reading and such in. During these times I would ready 3 or 4 books a week simply because I could do it for pleasure rather than business. I have decided to order several books off Amazon in which I have wanted to read for a while and my goal is to get them all read by the end of summer. While this should be more than an easy challenge for me considering what a book worm I can be, I’ve selected books all from the young adult genre. These are my favourite kinds of books to read, as the stories are good but I get distracted easily, therefore, it’s nothing too major if I end up putting one of these books down for longer than a week as they’re easy to pick back up and get into again.

I do also have the complete Game of Thrones series loaded onto my iPad that I would also like to try and read before the summer is up, but everyone knows these are hard books to read, follow and understand. However, I haven’t really been able to follow the TV series that well and everyone has been telling me to read the books instead and that I’d enjoy them more. Although I am more a fan of reading a physically book I have been known to start reading a series on my iPad and then going out to buy the physical copies and finishing it that way, as it just saves me a little bit of money in case I end up not actually enjoying the books.

Lying About Last Summer by Sue Wallman

Skye is looking for an escape from the reality of last summer when her sister died in a tragic accident. Her parents think that a camp for troubled teenagers might help her process her grief. All of the kids at the summer camp have lost someone close, but is bringing them together such a good idea? And can everyone at camp be trusted? When Skye starts receiving text messages from someone pretending to be her dead sister, she knows it’s time to confront the past. But what if the danger is right in front of her?

I’ve read Wallman’s other book ‘See How They Lie’ and was completely obsessed with it, and finished it within a day so when I say she had another book out I just had to snatch it up, and I’m currently just under half way through it and I’m loving it. The way in which Wallman writes is so gripping and just pulls you in for more, but they’re also really easy to read books.

The Art Of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson

Philip Pullman has called Lisa Williamson’s The Art of Being Normal ‘a life-changing and life-saving book,’ and this is just one of the reasons it became the bestselling young adult hardback debut of 2015, pulling in a nomination for the Carnegie Medal and being listed for five other awards that year. David and Leo, its two teenage protagonists, are both boys navigating their own rocky teenage terrain by attempting to be invisible. David harbours a secret: despite what everyone assumes, he isn’t gay, he’s attracted to the most popular boy in school because he’s a girl living inside a male body. Leo also has secrets; largely the result of his difficult background, and his friendship with David begins when he stands up for him on his first day at Eden Park School. The boys are all bravery and wit in the face of enmity and bigotry, and their friendship is both remarkable and unexpected. Though the Art of Being Normal has come under slight criticism by some for not being authored by a transgender writer, it is an important book that has great credibility, having been inspired by Williamson’s two years spent working as an administrator at the Gender Identity Development Service (GIDS) at London’s Tavistock Centre, which supports under-18s struggling with their gender identity.

I picked this book up a while ago when I was in Waterstones, and somehow managed to bag myself a signed copy, but I just haven’t gotten around to reading it yet. The story itself sounds very compelling and also very appropriate for what is currently seen in social media regarding gender identity and trying to define what ‘normal’ is.

Holding Up The Universe by Jennifer Niven

We’re all weird and damaged in our own way. You’re not the only one.

Everyone thinks they know Libby Strout, the girl once dubbed ‘America’s Fattest Teen’. But no one’s taken the time to look past her weight to get to see who she really is. Since her mum’s death, she’s been picking up the pieces in the privacy of her home, dealing with her heartbroken father and her own grief. Now, Libby’s ready: for high school, for new friends, for love, and for EVERY POSSIBILITY LIFE HAS TO OFFER. I know the part I want to play here at MVB High. I want to be the girl who can do anything.

Everyone thinks they know Jack Masselin too. Yes, he’s got swagger, but he’s also mastered the art of fitting in. What no one knows is that Jack has a secret: he can’t recognize faces. Even his own brothers are strangers to him. He’s the guy who can re-engineer and rebuild anything, but he can’t understand what’s going on with the inner workings of his own brain. So he tells himself to play it cool: Be charming. Be hilarious. Don’t get too close to anyone. Until he meets Libby. When the two get tangled up in a cruel high school game which lands them in group counseling, Libby and Jack are both angry, and then surprised. Because the more time they spend together, the less alone they feel. Because sometimes when you meet someone, it changes the world – theirs and yours.

Are you really a blogger if you haven’t read ‘All The Bright Places’ by Niven, and while I wasn’t the biggest fan of how it ended (despite it being in my May Favourites last year) I wanted to give this book a chance. If I’m honest I’m a sucker for stories with opposites that attract…even though it never works out in real life, it’s nice when it happens in a book.

The One Memory Of Flora Banks by Emily Barr

I am at the top of a hill, and although I know I have done something terrible I have no idea what it is.
How do you know who to trust when you can’t even trust yourself?
I look at my hands.
One of them says FLORA BE BRAVE.
Flora has anterograde amnesia. She can’t remember anything day-to-day: the joke her friend made, the instructions her parents gave her, how old she is. Then she kisses someone she shouldn’t, and the next day she remembers it. It’s the first time she’s remembered anything since she was ten. But the boy is gone. She thinks he’s moved to the Arctic.

Will following him be the key to unlocking her memory? Who can she trust? The One Memory of Flora Banks is the unforgettable YA novel to take home in 2017.

Not going to lie I was drawn to this book by the cover, the teal shade just meant I couldn’t resist buying it. The story itself sounds very compelling and reminds of a Jacquline Wilson book I read when I was younger at least I think it was by Jacqueline Wilson. I think this book would be amazing for teenagers as they could probably relate to Flora, and not knowing who to trust and if they can even trust themselves.

A Whole New World by Liz Braswell

This isn’t the story you already know. This is a story about power. About revolutionaries. About love. And about one moment changing everything…What if Aladdin had never found the lamp? The first in a thrilling series that puts a twist in much-loved tales, A Twisted Tale: A Whole New World explores what would happen if a key turning point in the story did not work out as planned. With Jafar in possession of the lamp and determined to break the laws of magic and gain control over love and death, the deposed Princess Jasmine and Aladdin must unite the people of Agrabah in rebellion to stop the new power-mad ruler. But their fight for freedom soon grows costly, threatening to tear the kingdom apart.

I love the story of Aladin so when I saw this twisted tale, I just couldn’t resist picking it up and giving it a read. I think this book is going to be a lot more grown up and less airy fairy than the Disney tale of Aladin, but sometimes it’s enjoyable to read nitty gritty books…otherwise we wouldn’t have authors like Dan Brown or Stephan King.

As Old As Time by Liz Braswell

Can the enchanted rose reveal hidden truths? Could it be that Belle’s mother was the one who cursed the Beast all those years? When Belle touches the enchanted rose hidden away in the Beast’s castle, memories flood through her mind – memories of a mother she thought she would never see again. And, stranger still, she sees that her mother is none other than the beautiful enchantress who cursed the castle and all its inhabitants. Shocked and confused, Belle and the Beast will unravel a dark mystery about their families that is 21 years in the making. Experience the third title, Disney As Old as Time: A Twisted Tale, in a thrilling series that puts a twist in much-loved tales, exploring what would happen if key turning points did not work out as planned.

With the release of the live-action Beauty and the Beast, I feel the world has gone crazy for this classic fairytale, but I absolutely adore the sound of the storyline in this twisted fairytale. I feel that it will really get my brain working and send it into overdrive trying to put the pieces together before I read how they are connected.

Are there are any books you’ve bought and are determined to read before the end of summer? Or are there any recommendations I should pick up on my next Amazon order.

Love you lots like jelly tots x


All photos within this post were taken by my me on a Fujifilm Finepix S4240. They were taken in natural lighting and edited in VSCO.

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