5 Books I’m Excited to Read in 2021 + Updates

It is finally 2021! I’m extremely excited for this year. Much like everyone’s 2020, mine didn’t go as well as expected. Aside from having online classes and having to stay at home all the time because of a pandemic, most of my days were spent watching movies and tv shows on Netflix and Youtube (I’ve watched so many good shows, I’ll probably write a blog post on that soon).

My initial reading goal for 2020 was to read 24 books. I intended to spend time on creating my portfolio (which I’ve yet to begin and will have to look for an internship in the later half of the year or the next), hence I thought 24 books would be reasonable, it is only 2 books a month after all. That was a huge oversight. I was speed reading the last 30 pages of my 14th book an hour before the New Year began.

This year, I’m still keeping my goal of 24 books. It might be a bad idea, but I think I can do it. I’m kinda getting the hang of online classes and so far in 2021, I’ve been reading almost every day! I’m feeling rather positive about hitting my goal.

Note: Yes, I did a post like this one last year. No, I didn’t even read any of the books on that list. Yes, I do not learn from my mistakes.


  1. What They Didn’t Teach You in Design School by Phil Cleaver

This is a book that will be crucial for me to read. I’ve found out about this through a classmate, who referenced it in her assignment and I had to get my hands on a copy too. I’m currently 50 pages into it and it is really helpful to me, especially since I’m applying for an internship this year.

I’ve read a book similar to this, What They Didn’t Teach You in Art School, but it focuses more on artists and exhibitions and not design like what I’m currently studying. I definitely recommend it if you are interested in learning more about how art exhibitions and galleries run.

2. Lullaby of the Universe by Anastasia Bell

I remember seeing this book on Bookstagram a few years ago and wanted to read it ever since. Somehow, I’ve won myself a copy when the author was doing a giveaway on Twitter last year so I’m thrilled to be able to read it!

3. WYRD: The Wild & Weird Adventures of A + B, Part 1: Japan by Sasha Borya

This is a book that was given by the author in 2019 which I am half regretfully only reading now. I feel awful about getting back to them so late, with the pandemic and the urge to be anywhere but where I am now, reading a book about the couple’s adventure in Japan feels like a great escape.

They also have a book on their trip to South and North Korea, and another one about Singapore and Malaysia! As a Malaysian, I’m really excited to hear about what tourists and travellers think about my country and what were their experiences. So far, I’m almost halfway through the book and really don’t want it to end.

4. A-Z Great Modern Writers by Andy Tuohy and Caroline Taggart

It’s the mix of knowledge, literature and art that made me curious about this book. I’ve always been fascinated by lists where others would write about the ’50 books that you need to read before you die’ or ‘greatest books in history’ and this feels like a good mix, accompanied by the beautiful (yet slightly scary, since they are just staring straight into my eyes) illustrations.

5. Sleeping Murder by Agatha Christie

I remember reading my first Christie novel in 2019 while I was working as an intern. (Now that I’m thinking about it, I think I read another Christie mystery last year so maybe I’ll be reading an Agatha Christie book once a year. If I can control myself.)

The pandemic has made me realised how much I enjoyed watching crime and mysteries. I’ve spent so much time on Netflix that I’ve made my subscription worth it. I’m really hoping to read a few mysteries this year and I know that Christie never disappoints, so why not begin from there?


Aside from all these mentioned, there are a few more books that were sent as a review request that I’m excited to read. For some strange reason, I’ve received a sudden influx of poetry to review, which I’ve already had a ton of prior to this. It’s very likely that I’ll be reading a collection a month, in order to get through my terrifyingly large stack of books.

There’s many other ways to say this but I’m just excited. To read, to watch movies, to learn, there’s so many things I’m excited for and looking forward to this year. Perhaps it is just the January hopefulness and positivity speaking but I’ll try to make the most out of it.

So what are you excited to read this year?

REVIEW: Colours and Tears

It is finally 2021! Although the pandemic is still ongoing, I can’t help but to feel excited for the new year and the possibilities of it being a better year than the last. The first book I’ve finished is a poetry collection which I picked up in the middle of reading a much more heavier book (review coming soon!) and I finished it all in one sitting. A poetry collection is a great way to feel encouraged to read again, especially when you can see the Goodreads Reading Challenge bar going up higher!

What’s your reading goal for this year? I’m excited to hear what your goals are! I’ll be writing about mine in another blog post coming soon!


Colours and Tears
by Nay Universe

get it here

BOOK SUMMARY

Colours and Tears is a writing journey on how Nay Universe portrayed her life in chapters from love, friends to lost.

BOOK REVIEW

3 STARS
*A physical copy was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

This was a short 100 pages poetry collection written by a local Malaysian! I was sent a physical copy last year but only got to it recently when I needed a break from a very lengthy book that I’m currently reading.

Colours and Tears is a poetry collection that is divided into 4 chapters. Most of the poems are surrounding love, heartbreaks and self-love. The themes of each poem was powerful and I really admired the strong feelings behind each poem. You can definitely see the pieces of the author scattered around the book, which I really appreciated.

I had a few poems which I really enjoyed, such as Lost in Shah Alam, A Liar and Maple Syrup, amongst many others. As a Malaysian, I really loved the line ‘Shah Alam has been nothing than utter disappointment’. It brought me so much laughter since I also have my fair memories of that town. However, international readers can enjoy reading it too as there are only a few lines that references Malaysia, so it doesn’t affect the poems.

For me, I think that the ideas were there but sometimes the word choices didn’t really do the poems justice. There were grammatical errors throughout the book which if reduced, could make reading it more enjoyable.

REVIEW: The Bookshop on Lafayette Street

This is a book that was sent to me a year ago. I read it the first time a few months back, only to be a little confused and had to take a break from reading. A few days ago, I picked it up again and although I was a little confused at times, I enjoyed it so much more.

As this is a real place, I am very intrigued and had to search it up! It’s in Trenton, New Jersey and according to Trip Advisor, it’s a highly rated spot for booklovers where you can find books, gifts, games, but most of all, a place that supports local communities.

I doubt that I’d be able to visit Classics Books but The Bookshop on Lafayette Street seems like an accurate representation of what a wonderful place it is.


The Bookshop On Lafayette Street
by Eric Maywar (editor)

get it from Classics Bookstore, Ragged Sky Press or Amazon

BOOK SUMMARY

This collection has everything that you love about used bookstores: books, the sense of wonder and discovery, the cozy clutter, idiosyncratic book lovers, and the feeling that you are in a haven buttressed against the cruelties of the world.

Written by a Pulitzer-Prize winning poet, a newspaper columnist, a playwright, a Dodge poet, a graffiti artist, a blogger, a bookstore owner and more!


BOOK REVIEW

4 STARS
* A copy was given in exchange for an honest review.

This is one of those books where I had to read twice. It was difficult to get into the first time, so I had to take a break from reading and try again. The second time, it felt like I was transported into the bookstore and experiencing the events myself.

The Bookshop on Lafayette Street is a collective work of writers and book lovers centered around the love for books and Classics Books. Some of the events in the book intertwines which appealed to me greatly, but my favourite part was the way the writers wrote about what books and bookstores meant to them in the ‘Extracts’ section. It was such a beautiful way to begin the book – having snippets of the stories and poems but also feelings that were so relatable.

As a reader, it felt magical. I felt excited reading about the way people romanticise reading and bookstores, knowing that these people feel the same way I do. It’s a little like I’m reading their thoughts, feelings and experiences with books, but its so familiar. It is such a treat for book lovers.

Despite reading the book twice and having more luck the second time, there were still some stories/poems which I didn’t understand. Hence I couldn’t feel strongly enough about it to give it 5 Stars. Other than that, it was wonderful and I had so many favourites.

My favourites are Wise Silence, Space, The Last Independent Used Bookstore at the Corner of Warren and Lafayette, The Infinite Collection of Unfinished Stories, Elmore and What the Bookseller Knew. Those were the sections I enjoyed reading (aside from the Extract), which shows that this collection of stories and poems are an absolute work of art.

It felt nice to read about something that I love so dearly. It felt great to know that many others share the same feeling, and it is absolutely evident in The Bookshop on Lafayette Street.

REVIEW: Angel of Mercy

I would have never thought that I’d like reading Historical Fiction but it changed the moment I read the first chapter of this book. It was a pleasant surprise, since reading books set during wartime never interested me but Melina Druga really sparked my interest in historical fiction and now I want to read more (only if it was as good as this one).

Despite liking this book since the first chapter, I took a long time to read it. Many things came up in between but also, I had a little reading slump where I did nothing but watch Netflix. It’s now August, and I’m slowly trying to make time for reading as my TBR list keeps growing. It’s really getting out of hand but now, I have two weeks till the next semester so I hope to squeeze in time to read every day!


Angel of Mercy
by Melina Druga

get it here

BOOK SUMMARY

She had her entire life planned until the Great War began and everything changed.

April 1914.  Barrie, Ontario.  Hettie Steward is feisty, educated, ambitious and stubborn.  Her fiancé, Geoffrey Bartlette, the love of her life since childhood, has been a patient man.  He waited while she attended nursing school and worked a year, but now it is time to wed.  While Hettie is thrilled to be starting her life with Geoffrey, she laments that marriage means sacrificing her beloved nursing career, and domestic life brings her nothing but drudgery and boredom.

When the Great War begins a few months into their marriage, Geoffrey enlists and persuades Hettie to join the Canadian Army Nursing Service and follow him overseas.  After all, everyone says the war will be short, and it will be their opportunity to have a proper honeymoon.  Returning to work is exactly what Hettie was craving, and she eager accepts.

The war, however, does not end quickly.  Soon tragedy strikes, proving true the old adage “be careful what you wish for, you just might get it.”  Geoffrey is killed at the Second Battle of Ypres, and Hettie is faced with a choice.  Return home or stay in Europe and continue nursing?  Moreover, will she discover the person she is meant to be now that her life has been steered onto a new path?


BOOK REVIEW

5 STARS

*a copy of this book was given in exchange for an honest review

Life is too short to entertain such thoughts.

– Melina Druga, Angel of Mercy

Angel of Mercy is an enjoyable book. I don’t often read Historical Fiction as some drag on and on to the point where I lose interest. But this, this book was amazing. Every scene had a purpose and not a single scene was boring. It really makes me want to read more Historical Fiction, especially if it is going to be as good as this.

The opening scenes were a little too fast for my liking. One moment Hettie was getting married, the next moment she was a nurse in the war, but I could tell that the author had other things she wanted to focus on but it also makes me unsure of what the future part of the story holds. It plays out really well, since at the start I couldn’t understand what would be so interesting about the life of a nurse while a war is happening, but oh I was so wrong.

Angel of Mercy shows the life of Hettie, a nurse who followed her husband into war. It focused on friendship, family, love and romance, but it also shows the horror of wars and sexism that reflected that era of time (and unfortunately now too but that’s a different matter). It also shows how war can really change someone, and how people deal loss differently. The writing was also easy to understand, which I find very important for a genre that I don’t often read.

My favourite part was how the story is sometimes told through letters sent by Hettie and family members to each other while they were apart. I’d like to say that it was a smart way to include depth into the story, but I don’t read enough of this genre to be able to judge. The author also includes a section at the end of the book explaining about the different wars and what had happened, which I appreciated. I don’t know much about Canada so this was a good way to start.

As someone who don’t often read Historical Fiction, or Romance, this was refreshing. It is a change from the genres I usually read but it is a change that is enjoyable and makes me want to read more.

REVIEW: Cranium Retaliations (Flags, Broken Bottles and Senses Weeping Due to Exhalations)

I’m currently in my first semester of my second year in college! The first few weeks were tough, I had multiple submissions due around the same time but now there’s 3 weeks left till the end of the semester and I surprisingly *think* that I *might* have everything under control.

I haven’t been finding time to read much, but when I do, I hope to take it at a slow pace, enjoying each book rather than speeding through just to give a review. I have a few books that I’m juggling at the moment which I’d like to share with you guys soon.

Till then, enjoy this review of Cranium Retaliations!


Cranium Retaliations (Flags, Broken Bottles and Senses Weeping Due to Exhalations)

get it here

BOOK SUMMARY

The Flags represent some of the icons that made the human history and their values are still alive to this day.

The Broken Bottles represent the misadventures, obstacles and sad facts that can pop during a lifetime.

The image of Senses Weeping represent all kinds of emotions generated by the first two, love on top of all.

Through three symbols, sense of humour and storytelling, the Italian poet Isaak Sank talks about literature, art, history, social injustice, world politics and his roots. Please feel welcomed into the mind of a young artist.

BOOK REVIEW

2.5 STARS

*A review copy was given in exchange for an honest review.

“…I don’t say what I read, I never make notes or underline passages.”
“Can I know why?”
“Because that’s where you reveal the most about yourself, it can be a true personal diary.”

Cranium Retaliations – Isaak Sank

This is a book that I (looking at the reviews and ratings before me) wanted so badly to like. It had such high ratings but I didn’t feel the same way about it.

It is important to note that Cranium Retaliations not like most of the poetry and prose collections that I’ve read. There were lengthy text and a heavy usage of imagery, which I would usually enjoy. However, some of the poems/proses were a little difficult to understand.

I believe it was due to language. Some sentences were not grammatically correct, so I would assume it was translated from another language. Then again, my grasp of the English language isn’t that strong either so I could be wrong. The idea behind each prose was solid, however it wasn’t easy to understand. I had to read some a few times over to understand the meaning, some of them I still don’t really know what it meant but there are notes at the end of the poem indicating what it was about.

With that being said, I have mix feelings about this book. Perhaps, I was not the right target audience. There were a lot of events, words, imagery that were significant that I did not know about, causing me to be confused for half of the proses in this book. For a non-spoiler example, in Expositions Part 2, set in what I believe was 1980, it spoke of things which I knew and was familiar about, all because I had an art history lesson about the 80s and the culture of the people of that era. Which made this quite an issue – to be able to fully enjoy this book, it is necessary to be able to have a basic understanding of the eras or subjects mentioned.

However, with a lot of them, when I finally understood the meaning, it felt like a powerful poem – some reflects on humanity, some gives a mystical feeling, shares different perspectives and even challenges to think differently. I had a couple of favourties from this collection, such as Dear Collard, Penmanship, Wi…Fine?. Although I enjoyed those few, I still can’t get over the difficulty of not understand what some poems were about.

REVIEW: The Twenty-Five Memories of Viggo MacDuff

This was sent to me by Odyssey books a while ago. This is one of the few books where I cried while reading. It was such an enjoyable book and though it was about a breakup, the way it was written, the relationships of the supporting characters with the main characters were all very wholesome.


Twenty-Five Memories of Viggo MacDuff
by Kate Gordon

get it here

BOOK SUMMARY

On Christmas Day, Connie Chase opens the twenty-fifth door on her advent calendar, eating the last chocolate as she tries to swallow the memory of her former love, Viggo MacDuff. His dazzling green eyes are everywhere; from the Christmas tree to the promise of eternal love in a sprig of mistletoe, Connie sees only her hopeless gaze reflected back at her, trapped inside an all-too-shiny bauble. When she finds that even Christmas festivities can’t erase the pain of her first heartbreak, she begins to tell her love story to her best friend Jed.

Unwrapping each piece as they go on adventures together, Connie realises how she let her internal struggles control her, accepting behaviour that she believed she deserved. Connie explores both friendships and romantic relationships, discovering the strength of her voice and the power of her individuality as she reveals her most vulnerable self.

BOOK REVIEW

4.5 STARS

*A copy of this book was given to me by Odyssey Books in exchange for an honest review.

It has been a while since I’ve received this book so when I read it, I’ve forgotten the summary and just went straight into it without knowing or expecting anything.

Initially, I was not into the writing of the first chapter. I remember feeling negative about the way Connie’s monologue was written however it provided a good backstory for the title – Twenty-Five Memories of Viggo MacDuff. I slowly got used to it around the second chapter and found the storytelling quite pleasant. Now that I think about it, perhaps I’m not used to reading a first-person type of story so it felt strange to me.

“I nodded, even though I didn’t agree with Viggo at all. I love poetry and symbolism and playing around with language. I love the beauty of a well-crafted sentence; I admire the skill needed to choose the perfect combination of words. And metaphors and similes and analogies? When they’re done well, they are … exciting.”

Twenty-Five Memories of Viggo MacDuff, Kate Gordon

Connie Chase had her heart-broken by the perfect Viggo MacDuff. He was the one Connie brought back to her parents, thinking that they’d be glad and proud that she met someone who was prim, proper and intelligent. She was head-over-heels for him, and willing to change herself to be how he’d like her to be.

It was a full 180 for Connie Chase. She said goodbye to her Vans, band t-shirts, 90s music and comic books and was introduced into a world of classical music, dresses, make up and whatever Viggo MacDuff liked.

Honestly, I thought it was going to be about some girl complaining and crying over her ex but really, it’s about finding herself again. And it is heartwarming. Especially during the formation of MOADM (Memories of a Different Me). The name itself nearly moved me to tears and was what solidified the 4 star rating.

I really liked the relationships in the story and am glad that Connie had such a wonderful group of people around her that helped her through her breakup. I also liked how her perception of the uberclones changed in the end. It ended on a high note and I’m glad it did, especially after what Connie had gone through.

The story was told through short chapters, which was refreshing. It made the book easy to read, and actually enjoyable since there wasn’t too much happening in each chapter. I would think that this is a book that could be enjoyed when you’re in a reading slump. It is paced well, with good character relationships and is a short read.

I would have to say that this was my favourite read so far this year. I would’ve finished it in two days if I didn’t have the self control. It was truly pleasant to read this.

REVIEW: Diver and Other Poems

Diver is a collection of poems that I purchased from Lit Books back in 2018. I don’t usually purchase poetry since I’m picky about it but I was curious about this one since it was by a local author. It’s already 2020 so it’s about time that I read this.


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Diver
by Alina Rastam

get it here (from Litbooks, an independent Malaysian bookstore)

BOOK SUMMARY

A self-published poetry collection by writer and social activist Alina Rastam.

BOOK REVIEW

4 STARS

Diver is a thin book with 20 poems. It may be a quick read because of the number of poems it has but it is certainly not easy to read it all in one go.

There’s no theme for this collection but a lot of the poems were addressed to people in the poet’s life. Some felt like love letters or diary entries. I’m not entirely sure how to categorize it really but it seems as if they were letters, written from the deepest part of the heart, that wasn’t meant to meet the surface.

It is one of those poetry collections that need to be put in an art gallery. Every line feels sincere. When I read it, it feels as if the poet was pouring out her inmost thoughts and feelings from within the heart. It felt as if I was creeping and seeing something I wasn’t meant to, like as if I was reading into the poet’s diary and experiencing her feelings.

This might’ve been one of the most beautifully written poetry collection that I’ve read so far. I’ve always been more fascinated in lengthy poetry that takes up pages apiece. There were some poems that I didn’t understand and had to read a few times. Either way, I was still able to enjoy the writing.

With that, there was a handful of poetry that I enjoyed. It left a deep impact because of how raw it felt, and the choice of words amplified the emotions. Some of my favourites were ‘For My Father’, ‘For Chang on Her 50th Birthday’, ‘The Quiescent Rain’, ‘Letter to Jane’, ‘Uncle Bob’ and ‘To A Beloved Student’.

I highly recommend this poetry collection. However, it may be a little difficult to find out of Malaysia.

REVIEW: Stargazer

Poetry collection number 3 of my little poetry reading challenge is Stargazer by Rachel M. Patterson. I’ve finished this before going on a short hiatus to focus on my finals but now I’m on a semester break until July. Hopefully, I’m able to read a bit more now.

I’ve received quite a lot of poetry collections to review in the past few months and a lot more since I’ve started this poetry reading challenge so it’s definitely gonna take me some time to get to it, especially since I’m juggling some other books too at this moment. There’s gonna be more reviews heading your way soon!


Stargazer

Stargazer
by Rachel M. Patterson (Patreon)

buy it here

BOOK SUMMARY

A series of unique and emotionally charged poems, paired with sketches from the author.

BOOK REVIEW

3 STARS

Stargazer is a poetry collection that could be read in one sitting. There are 17 poems altogether, accompanied with illustrations from the author.

There were poems about love, depression, hopelessness and hope. Some of the poems were completely heartbreaking and relatable, and some just felt magical. There isn’t a theme that could describe the whole book since it’s about different topics but don’t let that discourage you from giving this a read.

All the poems follows a structure with rhymes so melodious, it easily rolls off the tongue. It was a pleasant read, even if some of the poems were dark. Those were my favourites, actually. I enjoyed how Patterson uses beautiful metaphors and I’m absolutely blown away by each line.

My favourites were “Jagged Pit”, “Chronic”, “Spiral” and “Lunatic”. The way each line was written conveyed the feelings accurately. You are able to experience the emptiness and hopelessness in “Jagged Pit”, “Chronic” and “Spiral” but feel the curiosity and thrill in “Lunatic”. It was enjoyable and not many poems I’ve read was able to make me feel like I’ve been brought to a different dimension.

Filled with illustrations made with a pen. I’ve always admired art like that. It’s simple yet with the many strokes and shading, it looks complex and also beautiful. A good complement to the poems.

REVIEW: Lines by Leon: Poems, Prose and Pictures

I really enjoy reading poetry since it is an opportunity to think and reflect, the way the sentence flows always makes me feel joyous and the carefully chosen words make it a work of art that never fails to brighten my day. It’s also a good way for me to reach my goal of 24 books this year. Not a very big goal, since I felt unmotivated due to my reading slump that hit in the middle of last year but I’m back and feeling more better!

Often I see my book blog buddies having a little introduction part to their book review. I’ve been trying to adopt that if you can’t tell. I’m also considering changing some things about the blog, maybe even making a new logo for myself since I’m studying a design course and wanted a more unique one.


BookCoverLines by Leon
by Leon Stevens

get it here

BOOK SUMMARY
Lines by Leon is a selection of poems, prose, and short stories that address the subjects of loss, struggle, and reflection. Inside these thoughtful contemplations are original observations about ego, behaviour, human relations, places, and the environment. Many of the pieces feature a lighthearted and even humorous take on a subject, and the author invites his readers to laugh, think, cry, and meditate on the wide variety of thoughts.
Scattered throughout the book are sketches of various subjects, many that relate to the poems and stories they illustrate; others speak for themselves.

BOOK REVIEW
*A copy of this book was given in exchange for an honest review.

3 STARS

I enjoyed the illustrations that Stevens made. It was enjoyable to see and it makes it the story feel a bit more personal since the author made the illustration himself.

The poems are split into 11 sections, possibly the most I’ve seen so far in my very few years of reading poetry. Poems about human behaviour, the environment, struggles and a short story. It was a very quick read.

My favourite has to be the whole of People and Places. I believed that it was because most of the places mentioned and poems were about things that I knew, and perhaps if I didn’t, I may not have enjoyed it that much. Some other poems that I really enjoyed were Cycle, The Tendency to Cluster, Ego (Part IV), If (The Refugee). These were poems that I related to and some that I felt were artistically written.

I would describe this book as balanced. There were some poems that I thought were amazing and there was a handful that I really loved, however, there were also some that I didn’t enjoy reading. This poetry collection contains many observations, I guess I prefer poems that invoke deeper feelings, more intense and causes me to think more. It’s my personal preference and not many may feel the same.

From a design perspective, the cover is simple and stunning. The watercolour paper texture – absolutely brilliant! However the font for the text may not be the best font for this book, though the intention may be to have a handwriting sort of font, I believe there were probably better fonts out there that suited this book more. Some of the sketches were a little too light when compared to the text, and it may be difficult to see. I believe it shouldn’t be so since the drawings were beautifully drawn.

Overall, I have neutral feelings about this poetry collection. Not many poems stood out to me but it still was a pleasant read and the drawings were such a great complement to the poems. Perhaps it just wasn’t for me.

MINI REVIEWS (#1): A potential new series

Like most reviewers, I read more (and faster) than I review. With school work piling up and life spiralling out of hand, I feel less motivated to put my thoughts and feelings into words that make sense. This makes me feel a little guilty though since I feel inclined to review every book I read but I don’t have much to say about it. Most often than not, I drag it out for months and months until I lose the motivation and delete the draft, trying to forget it ever happened.

In a recent chat with a fellow reviewer that I deeply admire, Xueh Wei (check out her blog!) brought up the idea of mini-reviews – a place where I can give a short review for the books I’ve read but don’t have much to say in order to make it a fleshed-out review.

Don’t worry! These mini-reviews are for the books that are on my bookshelf and just books that I read for fun.


Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
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“Maybe the books can get us half out of the cave. They just might stop us from making the same damn insane mistakes” – Ray Bradbury

4 STARS

I’ve searched high and low for a copy of this book ever since hearing about it. I loved the idea of a dystopian world surrounding the idea of books. Especially when it’s a banned book!

It was surprising to me that this book was banned, but now when I think of it, it’s more ironic instead.

I went into this book knowing the main events that happened but still really enjoyed it. With this one, it feels like the themes and messages were the core rather than the storytelling itself.


The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie
9780007527526

 

“Oh! Money! All the troubles in the world can be put down to money—or the lack of it.”
― Agatha Christie

5 STARS

Incredibly brilliant.

After reading my first Christie mystery, Murder on the Orient Express, I went into this with the intention to try to solve the case as I was reading the book, carefully taking note of the characters, their alibis and the events that were happening. I wanted to solve it.

But oh this was brilliant. The ending caught me by surprise and instantly made this into a 5 star read, one of the best of last year. It was nothing that I can even imagine and I screamed out of delight in how amazed I was at the ending.


The Four by Scott Galloway
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“Don’t follow your passion, follow your talent. Determine what you are good at (early), and commit to becoming great at it. You don’t have to love it, just don’t hate it. If practice takes you from good to great, the recognition and compensation you will command will make you start to love it.”
– Scott Galloway

4 STARS

I’ve been interested in hearing about what goes on in the inside of these big companies. Galloway describes them in a way where it makes you question how much power they have over society. He views these companies in a negative light, which is what makes a lot of the reviews on this book quite negative too.

In this book, he shares some essential skills in order to make a business grow, which I admire as I feel these are good for all of us to learn even if we aren’t interested in starting our own business and can even help us become a better employee and co-worker.

As for me, I do understand both the positive and negative reviews that this book gets. It shows a negative side of the four companies and Galloway’s humour may not rub people the right way. All I have to say is to read this book with a grain of salt.

My reasons for liking it so highly is that, though I do not entirely agree with Galloway, he may not be wrong. I had a pleasant time reading this and understanding things from his point of view. My only issue is that it gets a little boring towards the last few chapters but that’s all I can say.


This marks the end of my first mini-review series. I believe these will appear once in a while on the blog, where I do not have incredibly in-depth thoughts on a book but do have a little to say before one spends their money on it.

I hope you enjoy it still!

-J