Eileen by Ottessa Moshfegh

“I couldn’t be bothered to deal with fixing things. I preferred to wallow in the problem, dream of better days.” 

eileen

THIS BOOK YOU GUYS. This book was so unique and so interesting. It is the story of a week in the life of our young protagonist, Eileen. A week that just so happens to change her life forever. Eileen is 24 years old, she plays the carer role for her alcoholic homebody father, and she’s extremely lonely. Honestly, she’s probably the most lonely and sad character I’ve ever read about. She’s ALSO bloody grotesque to tell you the truth. She. Is. Disgusting… and it’s amazingly dark and funny. Now, Eileen has been through a lot of trauma in her life and it shows. You can see it in the way she talks about herself and the world around her. She has a lot of body dysmorphia and self destructive habits. Her parents have never really showed her love, nor has anyone else. That is until Rebecca comes along. Rebecca begins working at Eileen’s place of work, and although in the grand scheme of things Rebecca doesn’t really show Eileen THAT much attention, she is literally so lonely that she’ll cling to ANY form of affection. This becomes dangerous for Eileen.

So, like I said, this book is approximately a week in the life of Eileen. And I’ll let you know now, it goes into a lot of detail about this week. We even learn about Eileen’s toileting habits. Eileen is also a super unreliable narrator and super unlikeable. She is so narcissistic, you can’t help but laugh (to keep from crying). Even though I hated her, I also felt for her. She has been through a lot in life, and her life is pretty shit. Looking after an alcoholic is never fun. I think you’ll have to read this book to find out why it’s considered a thriller, and to understand the magnificence and detail of Ottessa Moshfegh’s writing. I give it 4/5 stars.

A x

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June 2017 Wrap Up

Lately, I feel like I’ve been in such a reading slump and I completely blame it on having to do night shift for the last 2 weeks #bannightshift. I managed to finish 6 books in June, but half of them were actually audiobooks! I really hope July is a better reading month for me, because I’m currently behind on my reading goal of 75 books.

What I read:

The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertelli (full review here)
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallow by J.K. Rowling
Hunted by Meagan Spooner (read as part of #aussiesreadhunted
The Lives of Desperate Girls by MacKenzie Common (full review here)
It by Stephen King
Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

Here’s hoping for a better July! Let me know below how many books you read in June.

A x

20 things Harry Potter has taught me in 20 years

20 years ago today, the course of history was changed forever with the publication of a seemingly innocuous kids book entitled “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” by J. K. Rowling. Little did anyone know, including Jo Rowling herself, what an impact Harry Potter would have. For me, Harry Potter has changed me as a person and taught me so many things. With that being said, I bring you the 20 things Harry Potter has taught me, since it’s publication 20 years ago!

HP GIF

  1. The value of friendship: Harry, Ron and Hermione’s friendship is goals.
  2. Never write down your passwords (I’m looking at you, Longbottom).
  3. If you dislike someone because of their race, social status or blood status, then you’re a prejudiced dick who deserves to be dragged off by Centaurs.
  4. It’s ok to be different!luna1
  5. Just because something/someone looks scary, it doesn’t mean they are (Hagrid and Buckbeak).
  6. If your diary starts writing back to you – RUN!!!
  7. You never know what has happened in someone else’s life. Be kind, always.
  8. If you inherit a child off your dead sister, it’s probably not the best idea to make them sleep in a cupboard under the stairs…
  9. Happiness doesn’t come from richness or material things, but from family, friendship and love.Weasleys
  10. Be as wise as Dumbledore, as kind as Professor Sprout, as smart as Flitwick and as sassy as McGonagall.
  11. Everyone has a past, that has made them who they are today.
  12. Don’t believe everything the media tells you *cough* Sirius Black “notorious mass murderer”.
  13. Love always wins.
  14. The blood of a unicorn will keep you alive, but at a terrible cost.
  15. If someone abuses you throughout your whole schooling, it’s ok to forgive them because they loved your mum… (I’m being sarcastic, fuck Snape).
  16. Show everyone respect, whether they be House Elf, Ghost, Muggle or Centaur.
  17. There’s a time and place to use ‘Expelliarmus’, and mid-fight sequence probably isn’t it.
  18. Sometimes, you’ve got to be a little bit mischievous.
  19. In a world of Voldemort’s, be a Harry.
  20. Love is more powerful than you can imagine.harry ron hermione

And that’s it! Thank you Jo Rowling for the Harry Potter series, and thank YOU for reading. Let me know below what Harry Potter has taught you.

A x

The Lives of Desperate Girls by MacKenzie Common

I’d like to say a big thank you to NetGalley and Penguin Random House Canada for providing me with this eARC in exchange for an honest review.

the lives of desperate girlsIn the small town of Thunder Creek, Ontario, Jenny wakes one day to the news her best friend Chloe has gone missing. Following this, a young First Nations girl called Helen is found murdered. Whilst Chloe’s disappearance is heavily investigated, Helen’s murder is pushed under the rug… and Jenny wants to know why. Sure Chloe is her best friend, maybe she should be happy that the investigation is putting its resources into finding Chloe… but Jenny can’t help but wonder why Helen’s death isn’t being treated as significantly. This book is a coming of age novel focused on racism, friendship and slut-shaming. I found the story quite riveting but had a few problems with it.

 “It haunted me to think that once a person was gone, all that remained of their life was a random collection of possessions and a shadow in other people’s memories. It made me feel as if I should live my life in a way that would transcend a closet full of clothing and the private sadness of a mother.”

So, my main problem with the book was that it felt very “white savior”. Jenny is shocked to realise the way everyone in her town treats First Nations people is racist. I don’t know how she didn’t realise this by the fact that all the First Nations people live on a reserve, which doesn’t even have access to public transport. She spends the rest of the book investigating Helen’s murder, by befriending Helen’s mum and some of her friends. Granted, Jenny did realise throughout the story she was being naïve AF, but it all just left a bitter taste in my mouth towards her. Despite my dislike of Jenny, I did like the commentary in the book regarding racism in Canada. It felt very familiar as someone from Australia, where people have their own prejudices towards Aboriginal people.

“People got worried when a white girl disappeared. If she was blond, it was a national emergency”.

 

I also didn’t connect with the relationships in this book. Firstly, the relationship between Jenny and Tom. I’ve seen others say this, and I also found it weird that Jenny just skipped school to go driving with this guy she DOESN’T EVEN KNOW. When her best friend is missing, presumed dead?! Yeah, no. Jenny, you are stupid. I also absolutely loathed Chloe and Jenny’s friendship. Now – this book is told in a first person POV so we only hear Jenny’s perspective of things… and from this perspective, the friendship seemed truly awful. Jenny seemed simultaneously jealous of Chloe and in love with her. Jenny also commented that she hated the way Chloe was slut-shamed… then in the next sentence judged her for sleeping with people?! You either respect your best friend… or you don’t.

All in all, I could take or leave this book. It reminded me of a lot of other books, but wasn’t written as well. All together I give it a 3/5 stars.

A x

The Upside Of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli

The Upside of Unrequited is the second novel written by Becky Albertalli, and the second novel of hers to win my heart. I will preface this by saying, I adored Simon Vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda so much and it will be forever be my #1 #simonandblueforever.

the upsideThe Upside of Unrequited follows our protagonist Molly Peskin-Suso. Some facts about Molly: she’s a twin to Cassie, she has anxiety, she’s fat and she’s had 26 crushes in her 17 years of life. Out of these 26 crushes, she’s had zero relationships, zero kisses… zero anything really! And to Molly, this is a pretty big deal. Where her sister Cassie is super confident in her ability to get a date, Molly is self-conscious and unsure of herself. That’s until she decides it’s time to let go of her inhibitions, and that’s when the book gets pretty fun!

I saw myself a lot in Molly. We’re both awkward AF and have anxiety. Heck, we even take the same anti-depressants. I loved the characterisation of Molly because tbh she wasn’t 100% loveable. Her lack of confidence was a bit annoying, but also very realistic. She bases er identity a lot on the fact she’s a twin, and seems to use Cassie as a crutch. As you can imagine, when Cassie get’s a girlfriend, this is a bit of a blow to Molly’s identity.

I loved the diversity in this book. We have 2 Jewish characters, a fat girl (who thankfully isn’t described as being “curvy in all the right ways” – my pet peeve), 2 mums (one who identifies as bisexual), a pansexual character who is also Korean-American and another bisexual character to name just a few. And the diversity does not feel forced! Unlike with Sarah J Maas books lol. You can honestly see that Becky Albertalli understands and appreciates the diverse world in which we live – bless you Becky.

To me, this book wasn’t as good as Simon Vs. That book was just the gold standard for me so what can you do. This book is still fabulous though. And I don’t want to give anything away but yes, there is a wee bit of a Simon Vs crossover and it gave me life. I give this book a 4/5.

I’d love to hear your thoughts if you’ve read this book!

A x

One Of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus

I’d like to say a big thank you to NetGalley and Penguin Random House for providing me with this eARC in exchange for an honest review.

one of us is lyingDetention is where this story begins. 5 seemingly different students find themselves in detention, but only 4 students will leave the room alive. Pitched as ‘The Breakfast Club’ meets ‘Pretty Little Liars’, this book was super intriguing from the beginning, and kept me interested the whole way through. It’s got all your exciting aspects of a Whodunnit, mixed with teen angst, romance, and gossip!

Characters: The story is told through the eyes of our 4 main characters: Bronwyn (the brain), Addy (the beauty), Nate (the criminal) and Cooper (the athlete). Now, at the beginning I thought these characters were all a bit stereotypical and tropey. However, if you read the book you will see they have so much growth and change as you get to know them. To me, none of them were stereotypical by the end and I loved all of them so much!

Plot: I found the plot completely riveting. It’s fast paced, descriptive and exciting. Now, I will be honest and say I guessed the ending from about 1/4 of the way through the book, but as I told my friend Romie, I’m just that good!eQ20E

This fabulous book gets a 4/5 stars from me!

A x

The Versatile Blogger Award

Thank you so much to the lovely Book Princess Reviews for nominating me for the Versatile Blogger Award. Mandy’s blog is so beautiful and I love reading her reviews… I have also added so many new books to my TBR because of her so my wallet isn’t as big a fan as I am.versatilebloggeraward

THE RULES:

  • Display the award on your blog.
  • Thank the blogger that nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  • Share 7 facts about yourself.
  • Nominate 10 bloggers for the award and provide links to their blog.

7 facts about me:

  1. Outside of my reading life, I work as a nurse on a respiratory ward and am incredibly passionate about my job!
  2. I have 19 tattoos and hope to get many more.
  3. Harry Potter made me who I am today.
  4. My favourite flowers are peonies, king protea’s and lavender.
  5. My husband and I collect taxidermies, crystals and rocks.
  6. I have 2 cats and 2 dogs.
  7. I want to write a book one day!

10 of my favourite bloggers who I nominate and think you should check out –
novelparadiseblogquirkyandpeculiarflippingthroughthepagessunsnacksseriesblissfullifeprojectseelieknighttildareadsabookathoughtbloggirlwithapen and nerdytalksbookblog

A x