Saturday, 1 February 2014

What I'm Reading February 2014

I've always been quite an avid reader, except for about 5 years during and after University where I was so sick to death of academic reading, I needed a bit of a break. 
I thought you may be interested to know what is on my bedside table! That in of itself is a bit of a joke because last Christmas (2012) I was lucky enough to be given a Kindle e-reader. It's definitely up there in one of the best gifts I've ever been given. I know some people would be put off by reading off a screen, but I actually have no trouble and sometimes I even think it's easier. 
My main reading time is before I go to sleep at night in bed. I like to read for half an hour or so (realistically this is usually more like 45mins to an hour as I always get caught up in the story!) and I generally lie down. I used to find it quite hard when reading a large novel  (either large in size or number of pages) to hold the book while I'm reading, my hands would get a bit sore and tired turning pages. So for me, the beauty of the Kindle is that I'm reading from a small novel and only tapping the screen every now and then to "turn" the page. 
(If you're not sure what a Kindle is or you're wondering which model I have, click here). Also a quick mention of the pictures, because I only own electronic copies of these books, I have used images I took from my Kindle. So this isn't a particularly visually stimulating post sorry! (not sorry- it's about the books!)

So without further adieu, this is what I'm reading...

What I'm currently reading:

A Dance with Dragons (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book Five) by George R.R. Martin

This is otherwise known as Game of Thrones Book Five. I've been working my way through this series since around the middle of last year. My husband was really into the TV show, and wanted me to watch it. Often with books that have been made into TV or movies, I like to read the book first to see if I'd enjoy watching it. I know other people do it the other way round, but I like to get the idea of the story and explanation of characters before I see the (usually simplified) plot on screen. 
So in saying that, I'm actually now way beyond the part of the story that has been playing on TV. This book is a HUGE read- 1045 pages, and I'm about two thirds of the way through. 
If you're not familiar with Game of Thrones, it's a fantasy series set in ?Medieval times. There's fighting (sword-play), romance, mystery, dragons (yep dragons!), death, life, magic, religion and everything else that encompasses an Epic Tale. There isn't much to say about the plot of this book, because it's just carrying on with the story of the previous four! 
I highly recommend it, but if you're not into fantasy fiction, then perhaps worth a skip!

What I just finished:

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

This book is really topical at the moment because the movie adaptation has just been released here in NZ. The reason why I read this book was because I was going to the movie with my mother- and sister-in-law. I had been recommended the book by someone else, but intended on reading it after I finished Game of Thrones (not sure when that will be!). I really wanted to read the story before the movie as I wasn't sure exactly what it was about, except it involved Nazi Germany and a sad story. I like to be prepared, (as mentioned above) and to get a feel for the characters. It really is such a beautiful bittersweet story. I'm sure most readers have already read this book, so I won't go into huge detail about the plot.  
The story was very compelling and I managed to read the 550 pages in four days! I finished it the night before we went to the movie. I do not recommend doing this! I found myself comparing the book to the movie the entire time and ended up feeling a little disappointed after the movie. However, on reflection, I the movie was really well done and I realise a lot of the detail and subtleness of the book could not have been reproduced on screen. 
The other thing worth mentioning about this book is the style of writing. It is narrated by "death" (if death could be a person or being), and there are also lots of little snippets and explanations of certain words or situations, along with drawings that are mentioned during the story. I learnt the German Language for four years at high school so I found the explanation of the words quite entertaining and brought a few things back that I had forgotten. The unique way of writing is what makes it so interesting to read and helps to break up the sometimes sombre mood. 

What I'm reading next:

Carry on Warrior: The Real Truth of Being a Woman by Glennon Melton

I have actually started reading this book, only a couple of chapters though! Many of you may have heard of, or follow the Momastery blog and/or Facebook page and know of Glennon Melton. I don't know how I came across her, somehow in social media I think she must have popped up on me! This book has been on "want to read" list for quite a while but it was only this week that I decided to download it. I was looking for something a bit inspirational and something that I could read during any downtime I might have during the day (i.e. while my son naps). I wanted to have something to do other than Facebook and endlessly trawling Ravelry for patterns or other idle internet time! 
Momastery is a movement started by Glennon I think basically with the aim of helping and celebrating all mothers, whatever your particular views or parenting style is. We all know how much judgement, comparison and often shaming happens once you become a mother, and so Momastery is a safe place where we can ALL feel welcomed and also inspired to help others. If you are wanting to know more, then definitely check out her website. 
I loved this recent post about being a mum that really resonated with me after a hard week with my toddler! The post itself is actually about relationships- worth a read!
All that aside. the book is about Glennon's life as a former alcoholic, drug addict and bulimic, along with what this whole Momastery thing is. Well at least that's what I think it is! I stopped reading back covers and reviews of books because really, it's all the eye of the beholder (or mind of the reader), as to who like to read what, so I'll try and give anything ago!

I'd love to know what you're reading? Or just finished! Leave me a comment below!

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