Book A Month - January/February

I've been reading. That may not seem like a revelation to you but believe me, after reading nothing but magazines since my boys were born it feels good to finally have the time to pick up a real book and read it from start to finish. I've given myself the challenge of a book a month this year and so far, bar one blip, I'm doing well. I'm interested to see where my reading takes me over the year, I don't have a list to take me through the year, I simply finish one and then decide what to read next. I thoroughly miss browsing the big bookstores in London, though when we were last there in February I must admit that the choice available in just the children's section overwhelmed me! Please do comment if you have read any of the books, or if you have any recommendations. I'm no great book reviewer but here is what I thought of my choices for January and February...

The Room by Emma Donoghue
I read this basically because I wanted to see the film but felt like I should read the book first. I shouldn't have. I didn't like the film at all. They changed too much and I didn't think the relationships were as in depth as they were in the book. It was all wrong and it annoys me when you spend an entire film going 'wait a minute, that didn't happen in the book.' The book however I did enjoy. As a mother I liked reading about the relationship between the mother and boy, especially as their relationship is confined in such a small space, it was interesting to see their everyday routines. I also enjoyed reading from the point of view of the boy as well as the adults. Although the subject matter was pretty dark you become engrossed in wanting to know if they ever eventually manage to escape the room. Towards the end I would have liked a bit more from the mother's perspective but understand that overall it was coming from a different angle. Have you read the book or seen the film? What did you think?

Our Islands Story by H.E. Marshall
I was on a roll. Having finished my first book before the end of January I quickly started my second book of the year...Our Island Story by H.E. Marshall. I did like this book but I got stuck and have yet to finish it. As you can see from the cover the book is about the history of Britain. Each slice of history is broken down into very small readable chunks (it is aimed at kids after all.) I think I got stuck at the beginning because it's pretty repetative. So many battles, so many invaders, so many people wanting to rule. Reading the early history of Britain did make me think a little about the world today and all the conflicts that are going on. So many nations were built on battles between people wanting to rule, ordinary people fighting and dying for a country they believed in, and I guess for many that idea of violence hasn't changed. I will get round to finishing this book before the end of the year and will do a full book review when I do!

What have you been reading recently? (Book cover images taken from Waterstones.)

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