Ten Hidden Gems

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January 2018. It’s all about love of lists, love of literature and bringing bookish people together. 

This week’s list is all about hidden gems. Books that we love that we don’t think get enough loving in the blogosphere.

As ever, click on the book image to get to Goodreads.

My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece

I absolutely loved this book when I read it a few years back. I don’t see it around enough! It’s a sad book, but so worth reading.

Bird

This book was beautifully written!

The Quietness

The Madness

Alison Rattle is so underrated! I’d recommend all of her books for beautifully written historical fiction.

Indigo Donut

Some beautiful characters are within these pages. I adored this story.

Jasmyn

You might know Alex through her YA and middle grade reads, but she has written some stonking adult fiction too. This is great for those that love fairy tales.

Boy In The Tower

This was such a unique read!

Wait for Me

I thought this was a brilliant read. It reaches different ages too as my Gran loved it!

Johnny Be Good (Johnny Be Good, #1)

This is quite possibly my favourite chick-lit. I love Paige Toon’s writing!

Rites of Passage

I definitely judged this book by its cover. I thought it was going to be a New Adult/Fifty Shades book… it wasn’t.

Tell me about your hidden gems. Feel free to leave a link to your post and I’ll stop by!

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Round Up of British Books Challenge 2017

The British Books Challenge is hosted by Michelle at Tales of Yesterday. Find out more about it HERE.

The British Book Challenge was set up to show support for British Authors. By signing up I promised to read at least 12 books by British Authors. I smashed it once again this year by reading 63 books by British Authors.

Here are 2017’s efforts!

  1. The One Memory of Flora Banks– Emily Barr
  2. Paper Butterflies– Lisa Heathfield
  3. We Come Apart– Sarah Crossan and Brian Conaghan
  4. How Hard Can Love Be?– Holly Bourne
  5. Disclaimer– Renee Knight
  6. Margot & Me– Juno Dawson
  7. The Trouble With Goats and Sheep– Joanna Cannon
  8. The Witchfinder’s Sister– Beth Underdown
  9. London Belongs To Us– Sarra Manning
  10. The Cuckoo Sister– Vivian Alcock
  11. The Curious Incident of The Dog In The Night-Time– Mark Haddon
  12. The One– John Marrs
  13. Mad Girl– Bryony Gordon
  14. Lie With Me– Sabine Durrant
  15. Pilot Jane and The Runaway Plane– Caroline Baxter
  16. Fish Boy- Chloe Daykin
  17. Awful Auntie– David Walliams
  18. The Last Beginning- Lauren James
  19. Girlhood– Cat Clarke
  20. One Italian Summer- Keris Stainton
  21. Release- Patrick Ness
  22. Unboxed- Non Pratt
  23. Follow Me– Angela Clarke
  24. Watch Me– Angela Clarke
  25. Trust Me– Angela Clarke
  26. Truth Or Dare– Non Pratt
  27. I See You- Clare Mackintosh
  28. Blood Sisters– Jane Corry
  29. The Prime Minister’s Brain- Gillian Cross
  30. The Nearest Faraway Place– Hayley Long
  31. The Graces– Laure Eve
  32. Miss You– Kate Eberlen
  33. Damage– Eve Ainsworth
  34. Indigo Donut– Patrice Lawrence
  35. Gone Without A Trace– Mary Torjussen
  36. Her Husband’s Lover– Julia Crouch
  37. He Said/She Said– Erin Kelly
  38. Cartes Postales from Greece– Victoria Hislop
  39. Fortunately, The Milk– Neil Gaiman
  40. Good Me, Bad Me– Ali Land
  41. The Scarecrow Queen– Melinda Salisbury
  42. Charlotte Says– Alex Bell
  43. Close To Me– Amanda Reynolds
  44. Coraline- Neil Gaiman
  45. The House– Simon Lelic
  46. The Betrayals- Fiona Neill
  47. The Trophy Child– Paula Daly
  48. Saffy’s Angel– Hilary McKay
  49. Behind Closed Doors- B.A Paris
  50. No Virgin– Anne Cassidy
  51. No Shame– Anne Cassidy
  52. Then She Was Gone– Lisa Jewell
  53. The Treatment– C.L Taylor
  54. Letters From The Lighthouse– Emma Carroll
  55. Black Hearts In Battersea– Joan Aiken
  56. The Polar Bear Explorers’ Club- Alex Bell
  57. 13 Minutes– Sarah Pinborough
  58. The Hours Before Dawn– Celia Fremlin
  59. Noah Can’t Even– Simon James Green
  60. Witch Child- Celia Rees
  61. The Friend– Dorothy Koomson
  62. A Quiet Kind Of Thunder– Sara Barnard
  63. Finding Jennifer Jones– Anne Cassidy

Annual End Of Year Survey- 2017

Best books of 2017

I absolutely love taking part in Jamie’s End Of Year Book Survey. It can be a little time consuming, but I adore  thinking about my reading in the year.

Number Of Books You Read: 110 (thus far… writing on 21st December!)
Number of Re-Reads: 5
Genre You Read The Most From: Young adult

best-YA-books-2014

1. Best Book You Read In 2017?

Tough one. I think if I had to pick one it would be Indigo Donut by Patrice Lawrence for adult fiction and Letters To The Lighthouse by Emma Carroll.

2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?

Geekerella by Ashley Poston. I think the hype got me!

 3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?  

As I Descended by Robin Talley. I didn’t expect to like it as much as I did!

 4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)?

Simon Vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli. I’m still pushing that one!

 5. Best series you started in 2017? Best Sequel of 2017? Best Series Ender of 2017?

I loved Charlotte Says from Alex Bell. A wonderful prequel to Frozen Charlotte.

 6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2017?

Ali Land! I loved Good Me, Bad Me!

7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?

I can’t say I’ve read a book from a genre I don’t typically read this year. I must change that this year.

 8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?

The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick. Loved that book.

 9. Book You Read In 2017 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?

I’m not a massive re-reader. I think I’ll probably reread a children’s book like George’s Marvellous Medicine by Roald Dahl to my new class (when I get them!)

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2017?

The Scarecrow Queen (The Sin Eater’s Daughter, #3)

11. Most memorable character of 2017?

Lucy from The Names They Gave Us

 12. Most beautifully written book read in 2017?

Tough one. Really tough one this year as I’ve read some beautiful books. The Names They Gave Us by Emery Lord touched my heart.

13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2017?

I Have No Secrets by Penny Joelson. A book about a girl with cerebal palsy that can’t talk and hears about a horrible crime.

 14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2017 to finally read? 

Awful Auntie by David Walliams. It was fabulous!

 15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2017?

“You can be okay again. Just a different kind of okay than before.” – Emery Lord’s The Names They Gave Us.

16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2017?

Hortense and the Shadow– Natalie O’Hara- 32 pages  (picture book)

Habibi– Craig Thompson- 672 pages (graphic novel)

How I did this: Went to my read books on Goodreads and sorted by page number and just looked for what I knew I read this year that was the shortest and longest.

 17. Book That Shocked You The Most

Behind Closed Doors by B.A. Paris. It was so dark and twisted!

18. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)

(OTP = one true pairing if you aren’t familiar)

Lucy and Jones!- The Names They Gave Us

19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year

Jemma and Sarah from I Have No Secrets.

20. Favorite Book You Read in 2017 From An Author You’ve Read Previously

Letters From The Lighthouse by Emma Carroll

21. Best Book You Read In 2017 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure:

I Have No Secrets

This might not be a shock, since I keep mentioning it, but definitely this one!

22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2017?

I don’t have one this year! Shocking!

23. Best 2017 debut you read?

Good Me, Bad Me by Ali Land.

24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?

The Invention Of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick. Such an intriguing, engrossing reading experience.

25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?

Noggin by John Corey Whaley for its pure weirdness.

26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2017?

History Is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera.

27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?

Indigo Donut by Patrice Lawrence. I absolutely loved this one and I highly recommend it.

28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?

History Is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera.

29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2017?

Has to be either Noggin or The Invention Of Hugo Cabret.

30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?

The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel I couldn’t work out whether I liked it or not and the characters drove me mad!

book-blogging

1. New favorite book blog you discovered in 2017?

Geybie’s Book Blog

2. Favorite review that you wrote in 2017?

Indigo Donut– by Patrice Lawrence

3. Best discussion/non-review post you had on your blog?

This is kind of a review, but a review as a discussion with my sister. Good Me, Bad Me

4. Best event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, memes, etc.)?

I didn’t participate in much this year. It’s been an incredibly busy one for me!

5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2017?

Going over 100,000 views very early on in the year. Very proud of that!

6. Most challenging thing about blogging or your reading life this year?

I’ve had some periods of not posting on the blog. One period was a stomach bug and the other was me being in hospital mid December! (I’m on the mend!)

7. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?

Banned Books #32 The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time

8. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?

Chrissi Chat- Consistency– I thought people would have a lot to say about this. I did love the interaction I did get though.

9. Best bookish discover (book related sites, book stores, etc.)?

No new ones this year!

10.  Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?

  • Banned Books- another 12 books are about to be complete (delay on book 12 due to my illness last week!)
  • Beth and Chrissi Do Kid-Lit- another 12 books will be complete by the end of December!
  • Goodreads challenge- It was 100 books (I knew my year was busy!) and I set it to 115. I’m currently on 110 and I’m sure I’ll make the extended challenge.
  • British Books Challenge- 12 books as the challenge- 61 read… challenge smashed!

 

looking-ahead-books-2015

Click on book images to get to the Goodreads page!

1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2017 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2018?

 

A List of Cages

2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2018 (non-debut)?

Leah on the Offbeat

3. 2018 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?

People Like Us

 4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2018?

I’m looking forward to Restore Me from Tahereh Mafi.

5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2018?

Catch up on some 2017 debuts! I failed miserably on that one this year!

6. A 2018 Release You’ve Already Read & Recommend To Everyone (if applicable):

I haven’t this time! I am looking forward to reading Love, Hate and Other Filters by Samira Ahmed which I’m reading soon!

So that’s my bookish year! 🙂 What’s yours been like? If you have completed this survey please link yours because I’m super nosey and love to read about your reading years!

Top Ten Favourite Books of 2017

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by the wonderful The Broke and The Bookish. This week’s list are the Top Ten Book of 2017.  This should be a fun one! I’m looking forward to reading other people’s lists so I can see what they’ve come up with.

As ever, click on the book image to get to the Goodreads page for the book.

Indigo Donut- Patrice Lawrence

Indigo Donut

I absolutely love Patrice Lawrence’s writing. She’s so underrated.

Letters From The Lighthouse- Emma Carroll

Letters from the Lighthouse

Emma Carroll’s writing is simply beautiful to read. This book takes place in World War II. It’s an amazing piece of children’s literature.

Her Husband’s Lover- Julia Crouch

Her Husband's Lover

I love a thriller and Julia Crouch writes them well.

Good Me, Bad Me- Ali Land

Good Me, Bad Me

This book is so deeply disturbing.

History Is All You Left Me- Adam Silvera

History Is All You Left Me

I didn’t expect to like this book as much as I did, but I thought it was incredible.

George- Alex Gino

George

A touching, important read.

We Come Apart- Sarah Crossan and Brian Conaghan

We Come Apart

I have really enjoyed Sarah’s writing in the past and thought this was a fabulous read.

Letters To The Lost- Brigid Kemmerer

Letters to the Lost

This book touched me! I loved reading it.

Awful Auntie- David Walliams

Awful Auntie

David Walliams is a fantastic writer for children. There’s always something there for adults reading too which is very clever.

My Lady Jane- Cynthia Hand, Jodi Meadows and Brodi Ashton

My Lady Jane: The Not Entirely True Story

This book was just ridiculous and I loved that.

What have you put on your list this week? Let me know! Feel free to leave a link to your post and I’ll stop by! Happy Reading 🙂

Top Ten Books For Those Who Want To Read British Authors!

Oh how I’ve missed Top Ten Tuesday! It’s back today after a mini break. Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by the wonderful The Broke and The Bookish. This week’s list are the Top Ten Books for a certain person or subject. I decided to promote those British Authors I love so much. Here are a selection!

Click on the book image to get to the Goodreads page for the book! 🙂

Orangeboy- Patrice Lawrence

Orangeboy

I loved Patrice’s debut novel which centres around drugs, gangs, friendship and family. It’s well worth a read.

Indigo Donut- Patrice Lawrence

Indigo Donut

I recently read and adored this book which is another heart-warming family read. I gave this one five stars.

The Next Together- Lauren James

The Next Together (The Next Together, #1)

I didn’t expect to like this book as much as I did. Packed full of time travel which isn’t usually my thing!

Mad Girl- Bryony Gordon

Mad Girl

I enjoyed this memoir about the author’s experience with mental health!

The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night Time- Mark Haddon

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

I absolutely adored this book. So unique and special.

Am I Normal Yet?- Holly Bourne

Am I Normal Yet? (The Spinster Club, #1)

Another mental health story… not intentional but wonderful all the same. I love Holly Bourne’s writing.

Paper Butterflies- Lisa Heathfield

Paper Butterflies

Such an intense read!

Infinite Sky- C.J Flood

Infinite Sky (Infinite Sky, #1)

A beautiful read!

The Wolves Of Willoughby Chase- Joan Aiken

The Wolves of Willoughby Chase (The Wolves Chronicles, #1)

I only discovered this book last year! I absolutely lapped it up. A stunning piece of children’s literature.

A Boy Made Of Blocks- Keith Stuart

A Boy Made of Blocks

Oops, another book featuring a character on the autistic spectrum. This one is WONDERFUL and I can’t recommend it enough. A raw account of the main character’s struggle with his son.

Have you read any of these books? Have any caught your eye? Let me know! Feel free to leave a link to your posts and I’ll stop by!

Indigo Donut

Indigo Donut

How did I get it?:
NetGalley- thanks to Hatchette!

Previously reviewed by the same author:
Orangeboy

Synopsis:

A story of longing, belonging and trust. Two very different young people discover who loves them, and who they can love back.

Bailey is 17, mixed race, lives with his mum and dad in Hackney and spends all his time playing guitar or tending to his luscious ginger afro. Indigo is 17 and new to London, having grown up in the care system after being found by her mum’s dead body as a toddler. All Indigo wants is to know who she really is. When Bailey and Indigo meet at sixth form, sparks fly. But when Bailey becomes the target of a homeless man who seems to know more about Indigo than is normal, Bailey is forced to make a choice he should never have to make.

A story about falling in love and everyone’s need to belong.

Thoughts:

I absolutely loved Patrice Lawrence’s debut novel Orangeboy, so when I had the opportunity to read Indigo Donut I jumped at the chance. I also bought myself a copy, because I knew it was going to be an amazing read. It really was! I think Patrice Lawrence has just become one of my auto-buy authors. Her writing is exceptional. Indigo Donut is everything I look for in a story. Gripping, many layers, complex and most importantly for me, it has great heart.

Indigo Donut is about a girl named Indigo who is in foster care. She is fed up of everyone thinking they know everything about her, due to being in the press after being found by her mum’s dead body when she was a toddler. It was said that Indigo’s father killed the mother. Her father was imprisoned. Some of the girls at Indigo’s new school pick up on Indigo’s background and use it to torment her. (These girls actually enraged me whilst I was reading!) But then Bailey’s story line began to pick up! ❤ Bailey is known for his ginger Afro and his ‘cool’ dad who happens to be a social worker. Bailey can’t put up with the bullying and sticks up for Indigo. From that day on, Indigo and Bailey grow closer. Indigo’s early life is a mystery and Bailey is intrigued, especially after a run in with a homeless man that seems to be stalking them…

I thought Indigo Donut was an absolutely stunning piece of fiction. It really explored family and identity. I grew to love both Indigo and Bailey throughout and loved following their stories and their relationship. I adored Indigo’s foster mother. Patrice Lawrence really has a way of making you fall for her characters and root for them.

Patrice Lawrence’s writing is simply beautiful. There was a wonderful analogy about a donut.

‘She was like one of those donuts from the cheap shelves in supermarkets. Everything seemed all right until you bit into the middle and there was just nothing.’  – Indigo Donut

This quotation really spoke to me and completely sums up why I enjoy Patrice Lawrence’s writing. I could absolutely imagine how Indigo felt about herself.

‘Though when she was with Bailey last night, it was like there’d be something else inside her, something sweet and good. Not filling the space all the way up, but enough. You think there’s nothing there and then the first splodge of jam hits your tongue. You just want to smile.’- Indigo Donut

❤ I just adore Patrice’s writing. In just a few sentences, she totally captured Indigo’s feelings and my heart. I can’t help but rave about this book. It totally exceeded my expectations. More please!

Would I recommend it?:
Without a doubt!

‘Donut’ miss this book!

ARC August Sign Up Post

I have decided to join in with ARC August (hosted by Read, Sleep, Repeat) to keep up to date with those pesky ARCS. Don’t get me wrong, I love having ARCS but sometimes I’m not so good at keeping up with them. I’m getting better though and challenges like these often help out.

Here are the rules:

  • Any Advanced Reading Copy counts as part of this reading challenge; your backlist books count
  • No blog necessary to participate, but you’ll need to include some form of social media as part of your sign up
  • Use the #ARCAugust on social media to check-in

e-ARCS I aim to read

(Book images go to Goodreads!)

Indigo Donut Lola Offline The Treatment

‘Real book’ ARCS I aim to read

The House Charlotte Says (Red Eye)

I’m happy to say that only one of these ARCS are backlist ARCS which is Indigo Donut. The rest of them are either August or October ARCS. I’m hoping that getting these books read will keep me on track! I’m trying so hard not to request as many ARCS as I used to!

Are you joining in with ARC August? Please feel free to link me to your sign up posts so I can cheer you on!