Friday, 28 July 2017

Bossy Boots Bookclub: July Edition!

   So it's bookclub time again!

   
   Lost for Words by Stephanie Butlnad. 

   
   I liked this a lot. The setting and the characters are well drawn. I love a book set in a bookshop, but there is a sadness that pervades the book. I don't want to give anything away but this maybe wasn't the best book to be reading along with Homegoing. 

   Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi


   This is a good book. I liked how the chapters follow the characters down the generations. I thought the framework and her writing were really good. It's a book people will be talking about years down the line. It did make me sad but there is a line of humanity in the book that makes it special.

   Racism and slavery never leave each person you read, it shapes every single generation. That is something that I felt keenly reading this. Not a fun read by any means but I am very glad I read it. 

   Next month! The Borrower by Rebecca Makkai and A Beginner's Guide to Acting English by Shappi Khorsandi, I am excited for both. To be posted about on the last Friday of August which is the 25th of August. Happy reading! 

Friday, 30 June 2017

Bossy Boots Bookclub: June Edition!

   It's that time again for Bookclub! 

   Bellwether by Connie Willis


   The only other book that I have read by Willis is Crosstalk (which I would recommend too). Bellwether made me think about how science is created and it is really funny. I liked how passionate the heroine is of libraries. It does a nice job of poking fun at the bureaucracy of institutions. It made me laugh out loud, so I would definitely recommend it. Plus if you like audiobooks I read this on audio and the narrator was Kate Reading who was great. 

   Ten New Poets Ed. Bernadine Evaristo and Daljit Nagra

 
   I don't read enough poetry. This collection is a good selection, what I like about it is reading about different perspectives. In the foreword Evaristo talked about how the poetry published is 2% by people of colour in the UK. It is a shocking statistic that I hope is changing. This book highlights that the talent is there, so poetry publishers look for the poets who are not like you. 

   My favourite of the poets was Shazea Quraishi, her word choice really appealed to me. Poetry I have found is so much subjective than any other art. Still there is room for so many different ways to write poetry. It surprises me more than any other written art form, and spoken word is just as appealing.

   It also helps that this is a really short taste of each poet. You can dip in and out. I am glad that I picked this for bookclub.

   So next month will be Lost for Words by Stephanie Butland and Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi. They will be posted on the last Friday of next month, the 28th of July. I have already gotten the books out of the library so I am excited! 

Friday, 26 May 2017

Bossy Boots Bookclub Picks: June, July and August

   So I am picking my books for the next three months of bookclub. In other news it is way too hot here (yes here in England). I also am planning on going on Holiday in the summer. I was thinking about the Edinburgh Festival but staying somewhere that doesn't cost an arm and a leg is going to be hard. So I might do a long weekend somewhere else. I am going to have a think about it.

   Moving on to bookclub. Here we go!

   June:

   Bellwether by Connie Willis


   I recently read Crosstalk by her and really enjoyed it and liked how inventive it was. I've heard good things so I'm excited for this one.

   Ten New Poets, Spread the Word. Ed. Bernardine Evaristo. Daljit Nagra


   I don't often read poetry in anthology. I am looking forward to diving into this.

   July:

   Lost for Words by Stephanie Butland


   I am a sucker for any book that is about a bookshop. I am definitely looking forward to this.

   Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi


   I don't know much about this book but I do know it's had good reviews and it about the history of two sisters. I also really like that cover.

   August:

   The Borrower by Rebecca Makkai


   I know almost nothing about this other than it's about people who read (my people!). I also like a book that takes a road trip.

    A Beginner's Guide to Acting English by Shappi Khorsandi


   I am very interested to read this as I like her stand up and this looks really good.

   So next three months books picked! June's bookclub to be posted on the last Friday, the 30th of June.








The Bossy Boots Bookclub: May Edition

   It's that time again! So without delay here we go:

   Fruit of the Lemon By Andrea Levy

  

   I loved this book. This is a book that is deeply moving but also funny. There are many people here that I recognise (not all good). There is something about how uncomfortable English people are, how the conversations that white people have are made othered in the book, which I liked a lot.

   Faith, the main character made me laugh and her journey is really about knowing who she is and what came before her. It won the Orange Prize and it should have won all the awards, read this book. One of  my all time favourites I've read this year.

   The Little Theatre by the Sea by Rosanna Ley



   I liked it. I liked the setting and learning about the Theatre. I do have a confession, I read this really near the end and had to rush to finish it so I don't think I was in the best mood to be receptive. I thought that reading three over the month I could handle but I think it was just too much in the end. So I liked it, but I don't really remember it.

   Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho

   
   I really liked this book. The setting is great and the main two characters of Zachariah and Prunella I really fell in love with. It's also got a great pace. I couldn't wait to find out how this was all going to end. I was really satisfied with how it unravelled. Really good, I highly recommend.

   I am going to do a separate post choosing the books over the next three months. (June, July and August). Happy reading!

 



Thursday, 4 May 2017

Bossy Boots Bookclub: The (Late) April Edition

   I forgot about this April Edition, because get this I finished these books way early in April, opps. So no hanging about.


   A Spy in the House by Y. S. Lee. I knew nothing really going into this. I have now realised that this the first book in the series. I think there are four in total. I have to admit I didn't love it. I liked the heroine, the setting of London and the spying. It just didn't grab me, and I'm not really motivated to read the rest. It's still worth reading.


   Jane Steele by Lindsay Faye. I also knew next to nothing about this other than this is a retelling of Jane Eyre of sorts. I fell in love with this book. Each chapter starts with a quote from Jane Eyre and this Jane reads and comments on the book throughout the novel. She is a murderess but I loved her so much. It made me so happy this book, and set in a similar time period to the other book. I also bought this book in audio form for those who like their audiobooks, also just as good. If you like Jane Eyre, this is a great book to go along with it. This Jane is dark and has a lot of agency. My favourite book that I've read this year. 

   Due to me not getting Fruit of the Lemon by Andrea Levy (it's only now getting my library) May's Bookclub consists of three books.

   Bossy Boots Bookclub - May Selection:

   Fruit of the Lemon by Andrea Levy


   I know next to nothing about this book. I have not read Levy and I like the title, and that cover, so I am looking forward to this one.

   Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho


   I do not know much about this book, but I like the cover, plus it's a fantasy book. I want to read more of that. Looking forward to posting about this.

   The Little Theatre by the Sea by Rosanna Ley


   I am a sucker for a book where a woman changes her life completely enrolling in something else. I like reading about different techniques (baking is a big draw for me), I also know nothing about theatres so I think this will be fun.

   All of these books to be discussed on the Friday 26th of May. Any book and anyone welcome!

False Nostalgia Hole

   I spent at least half an hour to an hour looking at old posts I made last night on Facebook. It turns out this just made me sad. First of all this is not a productive use of my time, second I look at all those smiley faces and cheery tones and all I want to do is punch myself in the face.

   I keep reading studies that show that people who spend a lot of time on social media are more likely to get depressed. I think there are two issues there. Social media on any platform is a performance. It is bred into it's DNA. I don't think it's a bad thing, but it does make it interesting. It's a performance of sharing the things that you think people want to know, there is a public aspect to it. That is only part of your life that you choose to show in a public forum.

   I happen to part of a Private Facebook group that makes my life and I hope the other's that are part of it easier and shared. It is still public to that group of people but it is another form of privacy.

   There is another side to Facebook the look at how cool I am! Share this link about feminism! Please like this thing I didn't even read! It happens just as much on Twitter. I do it too. I have decided to stop. It just makes me mad at myself, I am not going to stop linking to things and having status updates but I am going to be much more selective. I want to choose things that actually mean something to me, I am not saying that I have not done this in the past but wanting other people to approve it? Fuck it.

   Looking at what other people are doing, I think I and everyone else needs to remember we are all in the performance business and deep down we are all as deeply strange and lonely as anyone else.

   Also to add it's a false form of nostalgia, my life has it's ups and downs, looking at the past resolves nothing. I wish I could do things differently but that statement is applicable to almost everyone else on earth. Facebook just gives us a version we displayed to the world in ink.

   I have also realised that I have been in Facebook for nearly a decade, there are things there that make it a helpful tool, but going down a false nostalgia hole is not one of them.

 

   Here is a picture of a black hole just because it's pretty.

   I am going to recommend this series of video blogs called Drunk Feminist Films. I liked all of them, but I particularly thought Crossroads, Twilight and Save The Last Dance all made me think and laugh the most. I am going to link to the Crossroads episode. You can find it here:



Friday, 24 March 2017

Bossy Boots Bookclub March Edition!!!

   Kicking off Bossy Boots Bookclub with two great books.

  
  
The Girl of Ink and Stars by Kiran Millwood Hargrave. I liked this a lot. The imagery, maps and use of myth really connected with me. I liked also in my copy the pages were illustrated. I liked the main character a lot, and the people along the way. It's a good book, I would definitely recommend this.


   Dietland by Sarai Walker. This book has stayed with me long after I finished reading it. There is a lot of anger and violence in this book, and it is a strange and interesting world that is created. Mainly though I fell in love with Alicia Plum. This book treats fat people with respect and deals with fatness in a complex way. I liked how this book is divided in parts with different names, this is shared with the first book funnily enough. I was surprised by how this book unfolds. As I said it has stayed with me well after I finished it, so would definitely recommend reading it.  

   I am so glad that I've read both of these books. These books are so different, it was an odd experience going from one so vastly different world to the other. I got used to it and I begin to like it.

   An adjustment to the schedule. My library has only one copy of Fruit of the Lemon by Andrea Levy, and I am the second person in line to request it. I am just not going to get the copy in enough time, so there is a change of plans.

   New order:
 
   April:



  Jane Steele by Lyndsay Faye.

  I have written about my deep love of Jane Eyre in all it's versions, this as far as I can see is set in the same time period. I am intrigued by the murder aspect so I am looking forward to this.



   A Spy in the House by Y. S. Lee.

  I have no real idea other than it's about lady spies in Victorian England what this book is going to be, and I am here for that.

   May is going to be what I've already picked and the Levy book (so three in total). Feel free to only pick one, I am being ambitious but I really do want to read Andrea Levy and it's only because of the reservation issue that it's not on the table for April. Happy reading!