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Books read in April 2017 

  
Another month over – how are we in May already?! I only read four books this month mainly because one of them was really long and recovering from my thyroid treatment I went on a Netflix binge and didn’t read as much as I thought I would. 

  
The Bone Season has sat on my shelf for so long I thought it was time I read it – another two books in the series are already out but it was long and slower paced than I thought it would be. I enjoyed it but maybe I’m too used to faster moving YA fantasies. 

  
The first book I read this month is the second novel by Girl on the Train bestseller Paula Hawkins. There are a lot of points of view at the start of this book which made it harder to get into it and I had to keep checking who people were but it’s an interesting thriller and keeps you guessing about whodunnit. 

  
Hot Mess was a proof sent by the publisher and it’s not released until July. This was a really fun book and being nearly thirty and single and will definitely appeal to fans of Bridget Jones and Sex and the City.

  
My favourite read this month though was The Power. It’s a literary international thriller about what happens when woman suddenly develop an electrical charge that can hurt or even kill, and suddenly women are in control. It’s a really interesting and compelling book with lots of action and ideas you’ll want to think hard about. It’s dark and disturbing and really hard to put down.

What have you guys enjoyed reading this month? 

Victoria

xoxo 

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Books read in January 2017

A new year means new books hurrah! I want to read a few more nonfiction books this year as well as my usual pile of novels, and I’ve made a start on that this month.

Here are all the books I read in January. The novels are on the left and the non-fiction on the right.

  
On the non-fiction front, I finally read The Secret to help with my year of positivity. The main premise is that you can have anything you want if you ask the universe for it and really believe you’re going to get it, even act as if you already have it. I’m trying to keep all my goals in mind and believe they are going to be achieved. 

  
I also read Capture Your Style, which is written by Aimee Song who has a huge Instagram following. It’s all about how to create a great Instagram and I picked up some helpful tips. Have a look at mine and tell me what you think! (https://instagram.com/p/BP53xQKAKDJ/)

I read some great novels this month. There was a thriller theme to my reading as you can see – just one romance read. The Roanoke Girls is a controversial book that I’ve seen talked about a lot online and a proof came into the bookshop, which I read and I was gripped all the way through.

  
My favourite book this month though was The Trap by Melanie Raabe. It’s about a reclusive author who sees the man she thinks killed her sister years ago on TV. She decides to write a novel based on the murder and invite him to her house to interview her. I am always intrigued when the main character is a writer and thought this book was really cleverly done, and I couldn’t put it down! Definitely recommended.

Have you guys read any good books this month? Do you try to mix up novels and non-fiction?

Victoria

xoxo 

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Books read July – December 2016

Earlier last year I posted all the books I had read during the first six months of the year and chose my favourite six (https://victoria-writes.com/2016/07/07/books-read-january-june-2016/) so here is what I read in the second half of the year:

  
  
  
  
  
My six favourites from July to December were:

  
I love Colleen Hoover’s books. I’m always gripped straight away and there’s always a twist to her love stories, often a dark one. 

  
A dark coming-of-age book about two teenage girls who have an intense friendship which spirals out of control. Absorbing and unsettling. Also set in the 1990’s which I loved.

  
A book about a group of friends who are leaving university. We follow them through their lives and the twists and turns of their friendship. A great summer read. 

  
A moving story of a couple who make a decision that will carry many consequences. Set on a remote island where they tend the lighthouse, I was gripped quickly and was left with tears in my eyes.

  
This book started out with a lot of similarities to Twilight except that this is about witchcraft but then the story came into its own and had a great twist leaving me wanting to read the sequel immeadiately. 

  
I loved this true life story of a man whose life was changed by a ginger cat. It’s an easy and moving read and left me with a big smile on my face. I then read the next two books and bought a Bob calendar haha!!

What books stood out for you in 2016? Anything you’d recommend I put on my reading list for this year?

Victoria 

xoxo 

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Books read January – June 2016

Last year I listed all the books I read each month and picked my favourite but this year I’ve failed miserably to keep track on here what I’ve read! So, instead I’m going to look back at the books I’ve read in the first half of the year and will do the same in December so I’ll still have a list of my favourite twelve books by the end of the year.

Here are the books I’ve read from January to June …

   
    
    
   

 And here are the six that stood out to me the most: 

    
I loved Elizabeth Gilbert’s Big Magic last year so thought it was about time I read this one! I really enjoyed it, her style is accessible and the story is inspiring and she is definitely one of my favourite non-fiction writers.

    
This is a short and unusual novel told from Lucy’s point of view as she ends up in hospital and attempts to heal her relationship with her mother. It drew me in and I think it’s one I’d revisit as there’s so much to think about.

    
This is a gorgeous hardback and an absorbing Victorian novel that is rich in detail and brilliantly written. 

    
I really loved The Muse – set across two timelines London in the 1960’s and Spain during The Civil War it follows two women and is really compelling with wonderfully drawn characters and lots of twists and turns.

    
I have been meaning to read this for a long time – it’s a modern classic about three women in the works of celebrity. It’s almost like reading a long gossip column, a delicious guilty pleasure. 

    
I had to pick a YA book as well. I love Richelle Mead’s Vampire Academy series and this first book on her new series is an interesting mix of Elizabethian and frontier worlds and as the author wheats does, the world is flipped on its head by the leading lady. Lots of fun.

What books have you loved so far this year? Hit us with your recommendations in the comments!!

Victoria

xoxo 

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Books that make you cry 

  
So I read this review of my novel (from this list of the ten most romantic books: http://bit.ly/246MFqP) and it got me thinking about books that have made me cry. 

Here are my five favourite weepies:

Me Before You – Jojo Moyes

  

The love story that will leave you a weeping wreck at the end is soon to be a film and I don’t think anyone will be leaving the cinema with dry eyes.

One Day – David Nicholls

  

A couple you rooted for from the first page and THAT ending … *wipes eyes*

The Last First Kiss – Ali Harris

  

I loved this book – again an epic tale of young lovers through their life together and I was not prepared for the ugly tears that came at the end. 

The Notebook – Nicholas Sparks 

  

The classic weepie! Both the book and the film will have even the most cold hearted person reaching for the tissues! 

The Fault In Our Stars – John Green 

  

I am still traumatised by this book. I think it made me cry the most out of any books yet is so life-affirming. I just love Hazel and Gus and want to hug them both *slinks away crying*

And if you’re still in the mood for more tears after reading this you can pre-order The Second Love Of My Life now! 

  

  

What are your favourite books to make you cry? 

Victoria

Xoxo

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2015 – a year in books

For the first time in 2015 I decided to list all the books I read each month and pick my favourite one. It was really interesting keeping track of what I was reading and has provided me a list of my twelve favourite books of the year.

  
Looking at the twelve confirms that I enjoy a wide range of books and this has definitely become more the case since working at Waterstones as I choose books I never would have picked up before. 

  
My favourite books are ones that I enjoyed but also ones that inspired me or ones I had a strong emotional reaction too. Some were easy to pick but some months I loved all the books I read so it was a harder task.

I enjoyed the challenge though and it’s really interesting to see look back at the twelve books that made the biggest impact on me in 2015.

  
I don’t tend to read a lot of non-fiction but I loved both WILD and BIG MAGIC this year so I will definitely be looking out for more in 2016.

In terms of fiction I think the two books that I’m still thinking about the most are A LITTLE LIFE and STATION ELEVEN. 

So now I need to decide whether to write about the books I’m reading each month in 2016. What do you guys think? And what books stood out for you in 2015?

Victoria

xoxo 

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Books read in December 2015

Books read in the last month of 2015 were:

  
Nancy Mitford  – The Pursuit Of Love

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Oh, the tedium of waiting to grow up! Longing for love, obsessed with weddings and sex, Linda and her sisters and cousin Fanny are on the lookout for the perfect lover.

But finding Mr Right is much harder than any of the sisters had thought. Linda must suffer marriage first to a stuffy Tory MP and then to a handsome and humourless communist, before finding real love in war-torn Paris. . .

Rebecca Raisin – A Gingerbread Cafe Christmas 

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Christmas is the season the Gingerbread Café was made for and Lil has every recipe down, from gingerbread men to cinnamon muffins. So when gorgeous outsider Damon opens a shop opposite The Gingerbread Café in the lead up to Christmas, Lil refuses to let him steal her customers without a fight – no matter how much he makes her heart flutter.

When it comes to love, Lil’s never quite got the method right! But as the snow begins to fall, it looks like this time deviating from the recipe might just lead Lil to the magic ingredient she’s been missing all along…

Victoria Aveyard – Glass Sword

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If there’s one thing Mare Barrow knows, it’s that she’s different. Mare’s blood is Red – the colour of common folk – but her Silver ability, the power to control lightning, has turned her into a weapon that the royal court tries to control. The crown calls her an impossibility, a fake, but as she makes her escape from the prince and friend who betrayed her, Mare uncovers something startling: she is not the only one of her kind. Pursued by the Silver king, Mare sets out to find and recruit other Red-and-Silver fighters to join in the struggle against her oppressors. But Mare finds herself on a deadly path, at risk of becoming exactly the kind of monster she is trying to defeat. Will she shatter under the weight of the lives that are the cost of rebellion? Or have treachery and betrayal hardened her forever?

Book of the month:

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Readers of all ages and walks of life have drawn inspiration from Elizabeth Gilbert’s books for years. Now, this beloved author shares her wisdom and unique understanding of creativity, shattering the perceptions of mystery and suffering that surround the process – and showing us all just how easy it can be.

By sharing stories from her own life, as well as those from her friends and the people that have inspired her, Elizabeth Gilbert challenges us to embrace our curiosity, tackle what we most love and face down what we most fear.

Whether you long to write a book, create art, cope with challenges at work, embark on a long-held dream, or simply to make your everyday life more vivid and rewarding, Big Magic will take you on a journey of exploration filled with wonder and unexpected joys.

Big Magic is a must read for anyone wanting to live a creative life – I think it would be useful whatever stage of the creative process you’re at. I found it really inspiring and it confirmed a lot of things I thought about writing and I found myself nodding along with Ms Gilbert. Let’s face it we all suffer with self doubt and this book is really helpful with how to deal with it and shake it off. I think it’s a book I will return to whenever I feel unsure about my writing (which will likely be a lot!)

What did you enjoy reading in December?

Victoria

xoxo