My Reading List of Book Reviews 2020

Hi fronds! I hope you’re managing to squeeze in a little reading now that we’re not stuck in traffic every day. It was one of my new year’s resolutions to read a bit more and, thankfully, lockdown has allowed me to get going with some goodies.

The catch 22, however, is that it often puts me to sleep at night! So I take quiiiiitttteeeee a while to finish a book. Nevertheless, I thought I’d jot down a few of my completed books so I can keep track and also give you a few ideas.

Truthfully, I actually find looking at the cover or reading the synopsis can put me off reading a book (we all fall prey to judging a book by a cover!) so I hope this actually helps you, not hinders your choice. Meg x 🙂

Hotel on the Corner of Bitter & Sweet (2 Stars)

My Mom lent me this book as I was stuck after The Invention of Wings. The Hotel on the Corner of Bitter & Sweet was quite good, interesting time in history (when Japanese Americans were put into camps while WW2 unfolded).

It’s a love story, but a very simple read – which was a bit of a problem for me as I wasn’t wondering about the characters or jumping to get back to the book at night.

Overall, it was enjoyable and very easy to read, but I have no idea why it’s scored so well on Good Reads! If you’re looking for something relaxing, give it a go. I think it’ll make a better film than book.

The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd (5 Stars)

I was half way through the book when I looked up the title and I was seriously disappointed! It seems SO cheesy and so trivial for such a powerful story. I understand the connection and why it’s named what it is, but I’m still not a fan.

The Invention of Wings is written in alternating chapters, one by the slave Handful the next by the owner Sarah. Sarah Grimke is a true historical figure and one of America’s earliest female abolitionists who not only fought for the freedom and education of slaves, but for all women’s rights in the states.

It sounds like a heavily political book, but it’s not. It’s a true novel and story teller, which being scattered with historical facts. I absolutely loved this read and felt deep sadness at times throughout the book and a longing when the book was coming to an end. A must read!

The Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay by Nicola May (2 Stars)

The Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay is a very easy, summer read. I enjoyed it for its easy reading, but that’s also why I didn’t LOVE it. It was very basic, which felt slightly like a waste of time. So definitely keep this one for weekends away, holidays, laying in a hammock if you just want to relax and not be challenged or overly emotionally engaged in some light reading. (Quite surprised it was a number 1 best seller TBH!).

The Giver of Stars by JoJo Moyes (5 Stars)

The title didn’t mean much to me and it had a bit of a slow third, but I thoroughly enjoyed The Giver of Stars in the end. It’s about a library of women who share books with the poorest of the poor in Kentucky. Sounds boring (again, why I hate synopses!) but it was a fantastic read. Very easy and all about girl power trying to stick it to “the man”.

Normal People by Sally Rooney (4 Stars)

Normal People was special to me as Trinity College, Dublin is one of the locations and I’ve recently returned from visiting the college. It was fun to feel a part of the narrative!

I enjoyed Normal People even though I felt annoyed that the ending was a little too normal! What was the point of reading the book? Well, that life is actually life and I’m annoyed that that is so accurate, HAHA! The TV series will be coming out soon and I’ve watched a few interviews with the author which, I admit, went into far more depth than I actually took from the story. But, give it a go and let me know what you think.

Becoming by Michelle Obama (4 Stars)

I’ve never been particularly interested in the Obama’s, no hate but just not a topic I focussed on at the time too much. Barack Obama was the coolest president of all time, but other than the media that found its way into my stream, I didn’t give it more research.

I was, however, interested to read Michelle Obama’s Becoming to learn more about them as people and, let’s be honest, because Oprah recommended it!

What I learnt is just how long and hard both the Obama’s have worked preceding their presidential residency. Their intentions to serve and develop their communities, their perspective on political values and social development, as well as practical experiences of the White House. I enjoyed learning a bit more about Barack as a person and I’m glad I read it before the Netflix documentary. (3 stand out moments of the book here.)

Icy Sparks by Gwyn Hyman Rubio (3 Stars)

I read Icy Sparks by Gwyn Hyman Rubio when I lived in London more than a decade ago. I always remembered it as it gave me such a good insight into what it would be like to live with tourette syndrome.

I also spent time away from my family when I went to boarding school and knew what it was like to lie in a bed staring at an unknown ceiling, listening to unknown sounds, knowing you’re safe and having to accept a new life but not altogether feeling ok about it. Something I can relate to the character’s experience in leaving home.

It’s a sweet, humble and honest book that I really enjoyed.

If you have any thoughts or notes that you’d like to add, feel free to comment below. For now, happy reading!



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.