South of the Border, West of the Sun by Haruki Murakami (Book Review)

I feel immensely strange writing this book review. South of the Border, West of the Sun is the first of Haruki Murakami's books that I have read. I had high hopes for it but was left bitterly disappointed. In fact, I don't think I've harboured such negative feelings towards a book for a long time.…

The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath (Book and Audiobook Review)

The Bell Jar is a relentlessly honest and haunting book written by Sylvia Plath. It tells the story of fictional character Esther Greenwood as she spirals into the depths of depression. The semi-autobiographical nature of the book makes it an even heavier read, given Plath's own depression and ultimate suicide in 1963, just a month…

Paradise by Adbulrazak Gurnah (Book Review)

Paradise, published in 1994, was written by Tanzanian author Abdulrazak Gurnah. Set in East Africa in the early 1900s, this wonderfully written tale follows Yusuf, a young boy who is taken from his parents to work for 'Uncle Aziz'. We soon learn that Uncle Aziz is not his uncle at all, but a merchant to…

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (Book & Audiobook Review)

Arturo recently found an article called The 50 best audiobooks of all time. It's a great list, but the book that caught my attention was F. Scott Fitzgerald's classic The Great Gatsby narrated by Jake Gyllenhaal. Jake Gyllenhaal is an outstandingly talented actor. I had no doubt that he'd make a great Nick Carraway, with his…

Wonder by R.J. Palacio (Book Review)

I'll start with this: I think Wonder by R.J. Palacio should be compulsory reading at schools. Perhaps for children around the age of 10, which is the age of the main character, August Pullman. August ("Auggie") was born with severe facial disfigurement. Although his face is the first thing that others see, R.J. Palacio has…

Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson (Book Review)

TW: suicide The subtitle of Jenny Lawson's book Furiously Happy is: A Funny Book About Horrible Things. Nothing I can say in this review will match that perfect, succinct description. I don't tend to read memoirs, nor do I gravitate towards humorous books. I heard about Lawson's Furiously Happy on another blog, though, and was sufficiently intrigued.…

The Good Immigrant by Nikesh Shukla (Book Review)

I always have a book list several pages long. The Good Immigrant, which is a collection of essays on what it means to be 'other' in the UK today, had been on my list for some time before I finally read it. In the end, I read it quickly. Too quickly, in fact. I wanted…