Inside Alcatraz: My Time on the Rock – I read most of this in January shortly being sentenced to 45 years in prison Jim Quillen was transferred to one of America’s most infamous prisons, Alcatraz; this is defiantly on my bucket list of places to visit and this book was a great way to find out more, a large chunk focuses on the escape attempt of 1946 which Quillen experienced first hand which I actually never heard of which was interesting, 3 stars.
The Hate U Give – I’m quite late to the party with this one, six months ago this seemed to be everywhere, I really enjoyed it and for YA it was very much a no punches pulled novel. This follows sixteen year old Starr as she deals with the fall out from watching a police officer shoot her childhood friend after supposedly mistaking a hairbrush in the door of his car for a gun. Starr must decide if and how she goes about getting her version of events heard before the officer’s trial. 4 stars.
Amber Spyglass – This wraps up the His Dark Materials trilogy, I thought it tied everything up nicely, given that it’s a children’s book. Again, I mostly annoyed I didn’t have these when I was younger as I enjoyed them at 26 but I’m pretty sure that if I’d have read them around the same time I was getting into Harry Potter they’d have been an all time favaourite. 4 stars.
The Upside of Unrequited – I was so sad when this ended. 17-year-old Molly has never been in a relationship but has had 26 crushes, during the countdown to her moms’ wedding, as her twin sister embarks on her first serious relationship Molly begins to question her strategy and how bad it would really be to put herself out there and get rejected. Before she can do that she also needs to decide who actually is crush 27. In a very cliched (but true) way, Molly was very similar to fifteen year old me and I couldn’t get enough, cannot recommend this one enough – 5 stars.
The Hawkman* – I was initially drawn to request a copy of The Hawkman by both its intriguing tagline – “A Fairytale of the Great War” and its beautifully intricate cover art. The plot is fairly simple and overall it’s not the happy ever after fairytale I think people are more accustomed to nowadays; but I really enjoyed the way the characters were developed through their backstories and flashbacks which built up an appreciation for their circumstances in the present day, 4 stars. The Hawkman is due for release June 2018.
The Pocketbook of Sunshine and Rain – A short collection of poetry, I wasn’t blown away by this but there were a couple of gems in there. If this has taught me anything is that’s I much prefer reading poetry when it’s in a physical format rather than on an e-reader, not entirely sure why. This wasn’t bad so I would recommend to anyone that likes free form poetry but overall for me this was 3 stars.
Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race – This is out in paperback early March and I’d recommend you try and get hold of a copy if you haven’t already. It’s not an easy read, but I learnt a lot from it and it definitely sparked quite a few evaluations of my own opinions/viewpoints. Its extremely well written and all of Reni Edo-Lodge’s points are backed up by plenty of facts and interviews. 5 stars.
Space Team: The Wrath of Vajazzle – I needed to read something lighter alongside Phone, I’d bought this one a while ago, like the first this was a light, easy read that’s trying slightly too hard to be funny in a so-bad-its-almost-good way. I actually enjoyed the first two-thirds more than the first book but towards the end, it just seemed to trail off in a strange way, 3 stars.
Simon vs the Homosapien’s Agenda – Yes, I technically read them in the wrong order but I requested this from the library as soon as I finished the upside of unrequited. I pretty much read this in a day and loved it. Excited for the film next month. 5 stars.
Television was a baby crawling toward that death-chamber – The new series of Penguin moderns were released this month and I couldn’t resist picking a few up, they’re just too pretty! I’ll admit I mainly went for ones with weird, intriguing titles which I think explains why this little poetry book ended up being first. I’d never heard of beat poetry before reading this and I can see why sthese poems would be considered modern classics and its not that they’re badly written but I’m not sure this style of poetry is really for me but that’s pretty much the point of these teeny £1 volumes. 3 stars.
Titles marked * have been provided for free in exchange for an honest review.