Mini Book Reviews #4

Friday, September 22, 2017
Over the past three to four months my reading game has been so strong but then with August I had a massive reading slump but with the start of September it seems to be passing *thankfully*. September also marks the milestone of reading 100 books so far this year! The books in todays post were either sent via Bookbridgr, Hot Key Books or Pushkin Press so thank you!

*S.T.A.G.S by M.A Bennet (290 pages, available now) - ★★★☆☆, 3/5
Another book with a fantastic cover and also a fantastic premise that seems to be very autumn and halloween appropriate! The synopsis of the book instantly drew me in as it follows Greer who is new to STAGS which is the oldest school in the country and is home to a Mean Girls like group of popular students who call themselves The Medievals.

Greer is from Manchester which I didn't know going into it and it's quite odd seeing the city you're from within a book! She doesn't fit in at school but one day she receives an invitation for a weekend of hunting, shooting and fishing at the house of Henry, the most dashing of The Medievals but nothing is quite what it seems. I adored the school setting as it was perfect for this time of the year, I liked the writing and it was such an incredibly fast read - I managed to read just over half of the book in a couple of hours!

You know from the very first page that Greer thinks of herself as a murderer and the rest of the book is working backwards to find out exactly what happened. Even though from the very start, you have an idea of what is going to happen, it was still interesting and suspenseful but there were little sections that I didn't like related to hunting/eating meat which annoyed me as a vegetarian; however I'd still recommend it especially for this halloween!

*Codename Villanelle by Luke Jennings (217 pages, available now) - ★★★☆☆, 3/5
I was very kindly sent a hardback copy of this book which was released last month and sounded like something I'd love. It follows a Russian orphan come ruthless, unfeeling assassin who travels across Europe killing individuals marked by her unknown bosses, while MI5 is on her trail. It definitely has a female James Bond feel to it especially with all of the sex within the book, so if that is something you aren't comfortable with reading about then do not pick up this book!!

It was a great book to get me out of a reading slump as it is so short, it was incredibly fast paced and action packed. Generally I liked the writing, particularly when it came to Eve and the latter sections of the book but I did feel like it was too fast, some of the sex scenes were quite cringey and it felt as though it was a set up for the full story although that might just be because there are four books originally published as e-book singles. It did fall a little flat, some scenes and the wording with regards to how the women in the book were dressed and how men viewed them was quite uncomfortable for my feminist soul to read but if it sounds like your kind of book then check it out!

*My Cat Yugoslavia by Pajtim Statovci (255 pages, available now) - ★★★★☆, 4/5
How gorgeous and unique is this cover, it instantly intrigued me to find out more! This beautiful hardback is obviously from the wonderful people at Pushkin Press, one of my favourite publishers so if you're looking for translated or more unusual fiction then check them out as they are amazing!

This book has to be one of my favourites from the past few months, it's full of so many topics such as a feeling of displacement, immigration, prejudice, LGBT themes, abuse, loneliness and not knowing what to do with your life. It follows Emine, a young muslin girl and how her life unfolds, how it turns out to be very different to what she had expected and her relationships with her family, husband and children. We also follow Bekim, one of Emine's children as he too struggles with what life has dealt him, his sexuality and nationality as well as being an immigrant and all of the awful prejudice and unwarranted hardship that comes with it. Additionally, there's a talking and rather obnoxious cat and a boa constrictor...

For me, it was heartbreaking at times, heartwarming, melancholy and unusual but it's also compelling to read, touching and beautifully fresh. It's impressive and additionally so when you realise that it's a debut novel! I cannot recommend it enough, I'll certainly be recommending it to everyone. Also this was my 100th completed book of 2017!

Have you read any of these three books? What are you currently reading or planning to read? 

24 comments

  1. I love your mini book reviews - gives me some many ideas! Thanks x

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  2. I can't say I've heard of any of these books but I love reading your mini reviews. Congrats on reading 100 books this year!

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  3. Firstly, 100 books in 2017 is awesome - congratulations! And lovely reviews, I will definitely be looking into My Cat Yugoslavia more!

    Anika xo | anikamay.co.uk

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  4. I really need to read more! I intended to read so much this year and I've got through no more than 10 books! Xx

    Www.coleoftheball.com

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  5. I really need to start reading more books, so I'll be sure to check some of these out! Congratulations on reading 100 books this year xx

    Hannah | luxuryblush

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  6. I really love reading. The book about the school sounds like something I would love so I'll be checking that one out. I'm reading my not so perfect life by Sophie Kinsella at the moment and about to move on to The Honeymoon x

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  7. Great post - love getting some good book recommendations even though I barely ever have the time to read nowadays 🙈
    Emma | emmadrury.com

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  8. I really need to get back into reading, I will definitely be checking out some of your recommendations. Loved your reviews :)

    http://www.katelovesx.co.uk/?m=0

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  9. Really need more time to read books and relax

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  10. I am so impressed you have got to 100 books already!

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  11. The amount you read always impresses me so so much! Its amazing!

    Erin || MakeErinOver

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  12. These sound lovely. I haven't read a book in about a month and these choices made me want to start again.

    Jackie | fashionxfairytale |

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  13. I don't read enough but love reading your recommendations. I definitely need to start reading more again.

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  14. I really like the sound of My Cat Yugoslavia! xx

    Beautylymin

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  15. I like the sound of the last one lots! Will add to my list xx

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  16. Oh gosh I love this ! I really need to pick up a book now !!

    Robyn x

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  17. Wow 100 books read so far this year, that really is amazing! You've completely put me to shame and I need to get back to reading. I absolutely love it and I get well into the books I read xo

    Char | www.charslittleblog.co.uk

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  18. Your book reviews are so helpful for inspo! x

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  19. I really need to read more fiction and give my brain a break!

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  20. Congrats on reaching 100 books! That's so great!! x

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  21. My Cat Yugoslavia sounds so interesting!

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  22. Love the mini reviews! I am a huge book lover but since having a baby in May, I find it hard to find the time to sit & read anymore x

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