So I was tagged by Georgia at Georgia Does Books on Instagram to share my favourite 6 books of the year so far.
Looking back on all the books I’ve read this year so far, I’ve read A LOT of 4- and 3-star books and only a handful of 5-stars! So here are six of my 5-star reads I’ve read so far this year. How are we in July already? These lockdown days are just flying by…
Girl, Woman, Other
“If a woman has to cripple herself to signal her education, talent, intellect, skills and leadership potential then so be it.”
If you’ve ever had the pleasure of reading Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi, you will LOVE this book. Like Homegoing, the stories are entwined with each other, with Girl, Woman, Other featuring interconnected tales about a group of black British women.
Evaristo re-visits timeless questions about feminism and identity in the experiences she narrates. Feminist thinking is constantly challenged and explored through each character, whether they be rich or poor, gay or straight, sexually confident or sexually confused, fertile or infertile, loved or hated.
“Keep one foot on the ground when two are in the air.”
The scenes in Queenie are so honest and encapsulating that you feel like you’re there seeing and feeling everything that happens to her, with her. Perhaps this is why when you’re reading this book, all you can do is think about what happens next. Questioning how you’d react if everything was going wrong for you.
There are a lot of lessons to be taken from Queenie, both from the character and the story itself. The ending is beautiful and left me with a warm feeling inside which I have to say, I’ve not felt so strongly from a book in a LONG time. I’m glad it ends like it ends and in a strange way, I felt happy for Queenie despite everything.
Daisy Jones & The Six
“I had absolutely no interest in being somebody else’s muse. I am not a muse. I am the somebody. End of fucking story.”
I couldn’t believe that this band wasn’t real and when I found this out, all I could think about was how much hard work, dedication and sleepless nights must have gone into the making of this book. Obviously writing a novel is never going to be easy and I celebrate ANYONE who does, but to write a book the way Daisy Jones & The Six is written and to make us believe that this band is so real, Taylor Jenkins Reid must be so, so proud of the work of art she has produced.
I loved this book with all my heart and to be honest, not a day goes by since reading this where I don’t think about the story and the characters. I can no longer listen to Fleetwood Mac without picturing this band. And the fact that the song lyrics to all their songs are at the back of the book, it just adds the icing to the top of the cake! I will probably re-read this book over and over again!
I See You
“If it’s just the two of you. Just you, and whoever’s behind you. Whoever is chasing you. How fast could you run then? It doesn’t matter how fast. Because there’s always someone who can run faster.”
I think that I See You has everything a good thriller should have. I was hooked by the first chapter and I just wanted to keep reading so I could gather all the clues I needed to work out the culprit.
Now that I know the ending, I think there are little (tiny, I must admit) clues that Clare Mackintosh hides in the book. Once I finished the book, I could not believe the MASSIVE twist at the end, but since looking back on the book and discussing it during the book club meeting, I can now see the little hints telling us who it was.
Once Upon A River
“There are stories that may be told aloud, and stories that must be told in whispers, and there are stories that are never told at all.”
Firstly, let me just say that I have not read a book like this one before. Ever. Diane Setterfield deserves more recognition than I could ever give her alone. This masterpiece could make those who had never dreamt of writing before, want to pick up a pen or open a new Word document and begin.
Why, you may ask. Because I have honestly never experienced storytelling like this before. Diane Setterfield does a beautiful job of setting the scene and by doing so, she makes you feel like you’ve just tucked yourself in to be told a great secret. The secret of the river and the power of the stories it holds.
“Is his story the result of his madness or the cause?”
OK, first of all…WHAT A BOOK. There are many things that this book left me thinking about. During the days spent reading it, and for many days afterwards, I was constantly in discussion with myself, my boyfriend, my friends and basically anyone who would listen, about the topics explored in this novel. I don’t think there was a topic about modern society that Jeanette Winterson left untouched.
Overall, I incredibly enjoyed this book and I would recommend this to anyone who is looking for a book that questions your current way of thinking. Be careful though, once you start reading, your mind will take on a thousand questions at once, and you may find yourself wanting to discuss the topics raised in this book with anyone who will listen, so here is your warning!