The story starts with Luna, a thirty something free-spirited artist, who after going to her father’s funeral wants to understand why her mother, Angie, left him behind. In addition, Luna starts to question the decisions she has made regarding her lifestyle (living the dream as an artist but struggling to make ends meet and actively choosing not to have children) which is the defining theme in the book. As the story develops we see the reason why Angie left Dave, learn about her life on a welsh commune, Luna questioning herself as a woman and we are introduced to a young mother Nat. Nat is trying to build a good life for her children despite the fact she is a young mother who mixes with the wrong crowd. The story is told from three angles, Luna in the present, Angie in the 1970’s and Nat in the late 1990’s.
I really enjoyed the book, so much so I have reread it a few times. The hippy 1960’s/ 1970’s era really interests me and always has done. Therefore, I found Angie’s chapters detailing life on the commune to be the best and most appealing to me. Luna was just quite moany after a while and that started to grate with me. However this I felt was meant to be deliberate by the author. Nat didn’t need to be in the book, I much rather had more chapters about Angie’s life on the commune than Nat’s chapters. So I found myself flicking through those parts quite quickly. As there was no connection between Nat and Luna and Angie both (apart from the children and them being women) it felt fragmented and found myself skipping over those parts. Although it all came together in the end and the book ended well. It left me hoping there is an Angie spin off!
(Image Source: Authors Own)
Also published as ‘The Knockoff’ techbitch is about thirty something Imogen Tate, Editor in Chief of Glossy magazine. Coming back from six months off recovering from breast cancer, Imogen finds that her magazine has completely changed. Her former assistant Eve Morton has been brought in to turn the magazine into an app. Coupled with Eve’s attitude problem and a whole new tech world to encounter, Imogen has found her life has turned upside down and she doesn’t think she will last long in this new tech world where traffic matters.
I really enjoyed the book, from reading the reviews it was billed as an alternative to ‘The Devil Wears Prada’ and I definitely agree. As social media is a large chunk of my current job I definitely understand the pressure of feeling you have to be online all the time and constantly looking for new ways to build interaction, both of which are touched on throughout the book.
Eve constantly is looking for instant gratification no matter if people know her or not. I really understood how the instant gratification that is given by total strangers over social media can give a real kick. I enjoy it when someone likes a comment or is asking me a question. It came across well in the book. It all added to the pressure thatEve put her staff under and how Imogen felt really overwhelmed with the media. You can definitely imagine that in real life (unlike ‘The Devil Wears Prada’ where I found it a bit unrealistic). Techbitch was the right length to read and doesn’t feel dated. It really is a book for those that like fashion or digital media.
(Image Source: Authors Own)
”To Pearl, there’s nothing sweet about her premature half- sister Rose. It was Rose that caused her mother’s death and Rose that turned her world upside down.”
Publish Date: 2014
I picked this book in Tesco (Tesco and Amazon seem to be a common theme here). This story is about Pearl, a 16-year-old, London girl who lost her mother. Her mother died giving birth to Rose, her sister by her step- father. This book details with Pearl’s struggle to come to terms with her mother’s death in the following year. I admit, I did struggle to read it and had to leave it and come back to it. As it was a YA fiction I did find to ‘get into’ the story as such as I found parts hard to believe. The writing expressed clearly the awkwardness in how Pearl deals with situations such as avoiding her best friend and meeting her real father. I don’t think I would read this book again in a hurry.
”Here is a truth that can’t be escaped: for Mia ‘Rabbit’ Hayes, life is coming to an end.
Rabbit Hayes loves her life, ordinary as it is, and the extraordinary people in it. She loves her spirited daughter, Juliet, her colourful, unruly family; the only man in her big heart, Johnny Faye.
But it turns out the world has other plans for Rabbit, and she’s OK with that. Because she has plans for the world too, and only a handful of days left to make them happen.
Here is a truth that won’t be forgotten: this is a story about laughing through life’s surprises and finding the joy in every moment. ”
Publish Date: 2014
Awww I loved this book, this story is about Rabbit, she is in a hospice dying of cancer and she is aware that she hasn’t got long to live. In Rabbit’s sleep, she goes back to her youth where she was in love with Johnny Faye who was in a band with her brother. The chapters alternate between the growing love story between her and Johnny to how her family is dealing with Rabbit dying. In particular the relationship between Rabbit’s mother, Molly and her brother Davey, over the guardianship of Juliet her daughter. The story itself was very well written, it felt to me that each chapter had its place and added to either the love story or the practicalities and emotions of having a close one pass away. On a side note, I loved the fact it was set in Ireland, as I have visited Ireland before and loved the place (and want to go back).
(Image Source, Authors Own)
I regret to inform you that I have had to take my own life. This decision has been a long time coming, and was mine alone to make. I know it will cause you great pain, and for that I am sorry, but please know that I needed to end my own pain. This has nothing to do with you and everything to do with me. It’s not your fault. Meg
Cody and Meg were inseparable- best friends for life. They knew everything about each other. Or Cody thought they did. But how well do you every really know your best friend? And what do you do when they choose to leave you behind?
Author: Gayle Forman
Publish Date: 2015
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Genre: Young Adult
Picking this book up from Tesco I was planning on saving it until the plane. I am so glad I didn’t. I was here is about a girl called Cody who lives in a quiet small American town where little much happens. Her mum ( who she has to call Trisha) doesn’t really care about her and she never knew her dad. Hence, she spent most of her childhood with her best friend Megan. When her best friend, Meg commits suicide. Cody goes in a quest to find out why Meg did what she did and meets some interesting characters along the way.
As the book is classed as a Young Adult, although I enjoyed it I could very much see I was a little old (I’m 24) for it to make as much as an impact as perhaps a 16-year-old reading it (but that’s not the authors fault!). I was here was very well written. It didn’t feel as if the story dragged on and was completely believable.
I really felt for Cody, who, to be honest, had been given a bad hand in life and is making the best of the situation. Not wanting to give too much away, I was here shows how people behind a computer screen are really who they are not made out to be and how their actions can affect people on the receiving end. I wouldn’t say the book kept me ‘gripped’ however I certainly found myself wanting to find out what happens at the end. This book is staying on my shelf and is one I will definitely read again.