November Books List

Wednesday 28 November 2012

This month, I've managed to read four books which I'm really proud of because it's been such a crazy, busy month for me.  If you struggle to find time to read, try to always keep a book in your handbag - it's amazing how much I manage to read during the day just because I know I have a book with me.  Here are the books I've read in November:-

(1) If This Is A Man & The Truce by Primo Levi
I've read a few memoirs by those who survived the Nazi concentration camps, but Levi's accounts of what he saw during his time at Auschwitz are some of the most horrifying I've come across, yet are written in this beautiful prose.  Its his prose and his outlook on the situation that he's been forced into, that makes this book almost enjoyable to read if that's the correct word to use.  His words really grab you and transport you back to that awful time like you're standing right next to him; absolutely terrifying, yet completely fascinating at the same time.  A must read for anyone interested in the Holocaust and WW2.  [4/5]

(2) Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell
Like a lot of other people, I decided to pick up Cloud Atlas and read it before I started to hear all of the hype surrounding the big budget film adaptation.  It took me a long time to get into this book and I ended picking it up and putting it back down again throughout the month.  Eventually, I just sat down with it and managed to finish it off.  Cloud Atlas is basically a series of six short stories (with most actually being in two parts), which have elements of historical fiction, science fiction and fantasy.  I won't go into the spoilers, but despite how cleverly it's written, I think I'm going to find myself enjoying the movie a whole lot more.  [2/5]

(3) Different Seasons by Stephen King
Different Seasons consists of four short stories/novellas by one of the masters of the horror genre, Stephen King.  The first story is 'Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption' - definitely my favourite of this collection, and the one that most people will be familiar with due to the incredible film of the latter name.  The second story is called 'Apt Pupil' and was surprisingly enjoyable despite its macabre subject matter.  It's a deeply disturbing tale of a young school boy who finds out that a Nazi war criminal is living in his neighbourhood and starts to blackmail him for gory details of the war.  The horror in that story escalates quickly and makes for riveting reading.

The third story, 'The Body' is more well known as the inspiration for the film 'Stand By Me', and it recounts the experiences of a group of young boys who hear about the location of a dead body and make plans to find it.  It's rather anti-climatic, but I loved the coming-of-age vibes.  And lastly, there's 'The Breathing Method', which is an inter-tangled web of a story, and focuses on a guy who joins a secret club, and a young woman who will do anything to have children.  It's a bit of a weird one and ventures into the supernatural world, making it completely different to the other stories in the collection.  Even if the other stories don't appeal to you, Different Seasons is worth picking up just for the Shawshank Redemption alone.  [4/5]

(4) The Fault In Our Stars
I picked up The Fault In Our Stars after reading Looking For Alaska and I just love John Green.  He's one of those authors who manages to create perfect coming-of-age stories by always putting his own twist on them, and he really gets into the teenage characters heads.  The Fault In Our Stars is about a young terminally ill teenage girl who meets a boy at her cancer support group.  As cheesy as this sounds, this is one of those books which will make you cry, laugh, and then cry some more, all of which can only come from reading about such angst, love and ultimately death.  Highly recommended.  [5/5]

What books have you been reading this month?
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  1. I've heard of 'The fault in our stars' and it sounds really interesting. I need to buy it, need a new book to read and seems like something I'd like
    Daniella x

  2. I think I'm going to have to read The Fault in our Stars. I read Looking for Alaska a few months ago and though I really liked his writing and depth into personalities I found the general theme a bit lacklustre. This one sounds more interesting though! x

    1. I've heard that from a few reviews I've read comparing those two. I think TFIOS has more of a meaningful theme throughout, but it's still in very much a similar writing style to LFA x

  3. I love Different Seasons it's excellent!

  4. Been looking for some new books to read so yay, thank you!

  5. Oh no I'm sad you didn't like cloud atlas I've just started reading it and I was hoping it lived up to the hype about the film x

    1. Loads of people I know love it, but it just wasn't my cup of tea x


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