where our team of writers love to talk all things books, sharing reviews, features, lists, interviews and more.

Getting lost in a book is escapism at it's finest and it's what everyone who contributes here thrives on.


Saturday 29 February 2020

Book Club | February 2020 Roundup

It's time for another book club roundup! Our theme for February was books with trees or leaves on the cover and there were so mnay amazing options. Here are a few of the posts shared, featuring a bunch of titles to add to your TBRs....

My pick for the Blogger’s Bookshelf Book Club in February was I Love You So Mochi by Sarah Kuhn. The prompt was ‘a book with a tree or leaf on the cover’, and the cover for this is absolutely breathtaking, featuring a couple strolling amongst cherry blossom trees at full bloom. And the story itself is equally as great. I used to say ‘YA isn’t really my bag’, but I’ve found myself really enjoying the genre recently and that’s a-okay with me! Kimi Nakamura is on the cusp of going to art school and her Mum is thrilled about it. Kimi, however, is obsessed with creating Kimi Originals, bold, art-like outfits that give her friends strength. After an explosive argument with her Mum, Kimi receives a letter from her estranged grandparents, inviting her to spend spring break in Kyoto with them. The story really begins in Japan and Kuhn’s first-person narratives of Kimi really put the gears in motion. She captures the ambience of Japan incredibly well, as well as the struggles that second- and third-generation immigrant kids go through. In parts it felt as though I were back in Japan myself! 🌸⛩️🇯🇵 #DaisybutterReads #bloggersbookshelf
A post shared by Michelle Chai / Daisybutter (@winyeemichelle) on

This month’s prompt for the @bloggersbookshelf Book Club is a book with a tree or leaf on the cover and I chose the wonderful Truly Devious by Maureen Johnson. Truly Devious follows wannabe detective and true crime podcast enthusiast Stevie Bell, who applies to the infamous Ellingham Academy in hopes of solving the cold case of the triple murder that happened there in 1936, but after a tragic accident in her first term at the school, Stevie finds that may not be the only case that needs her investigative skills. I enjoyed this one so much, I’ve already started reading the next book and ordered the third. If you’re a fan of cosy murder mysteries with an added dash of teen drama, I highly recommend Truly Devious. Also, one of Stevie’s friends is a writer and I relate way too hard to the way he talks about writing. Or rather, the way he will do absolutely anything to avoid talking about writing. Or doing any writing. A+ writer representation. - #vsco #vscocam #bloggersbookshelf #bookshelfbookclub #bookreview #afterlight #bookstagram #vscobooks #bookworm #booklove #prettybooks #beautifulbooks #instabooks #bibliophile #igreads #booklover #yabookstagram #yabooklovers #trulydevious #maureenjohnson
A post shared by Anastasia Gammon | Writer (@stasialikescakes) on

We'll be introducing March's book club tomorrow so don't forget to check back! Use the hashtag #bloggersbookshelf or tag @bloggersbookshelf to share your photos and mini reviews with us throughout the month.

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Friday 21 February 2020

Break Your Glass Slippers | Amanda Lovelace | Review

"more forgetting time.
more midnight dances with yourself
I've said it before and the truth remains: I'm not a huge fan of poetry. I try to get into it every so often, but I can't seem to grasp hold of it like the way some people have. Over the last few years I've discovered that I rather enjoy short-form poetry, the likes of Instagram-famous Atticus.

After forgetting to read full length novels which I was granted access to on Netgalley, I thought I would better use the platform for things that I will actually read in ebook form: graphic novels, and poetry. Enter Break Your Glass Slippers, by Amanda Lovelace.

Break Your Glass Slippers is what you might expect: poems that are at least semi-related to Cinderella, fairy godmothers and princes. But it's unlike what you might expect in the way Lovelace gathers the words together. The book is sectioned by a few characters: a Cinderella-esque girl falling for a boy, struggling with her self worth and who she is; a fairy godmother, who tells her the truth and gives advice, whether is hears it or not; the prince, who isn't what he seems. "Here", says the forward, "we all get to be Cinderella, our own Fairy Godmother, and best of all, our own Prince."

I read this book in one sitting, and it flowed beautifully between poems and themes and highs and lows. There were a few poems that I really loved and paused over for a moment or three, and there were others I wouldn't go back to. But on the whole, Break Your Glass Slippers was a really enjoyable short-form poetry collection, and if you're into authors like Atticus and perhaps Rupi Kaur, then give this book a go when it comes out in March.

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Saturday 15 February 2020

Bookish Links #53

1. This list of debut authors is perfect for finding titles for our 2020 book club! If you missed our full book club prompts list, you can find it here.

2. We love this list of five titles to read if you enjoyed Big Little Lies.

3. Anjali shared an awesome inforgraphic detailing an entire decade of reading!

4. Jana shared some of her favourite illustrated book covers.

5. This wallpaper is such a cute idea for decorating a child's room!

6. This post has lots of brilliant ideas for your 2020 TBR.

7. Erin has set herself a challenge to share an art piece inspired by each of her 2020 book club picks - the first can be found over on her Instagram.

8. We love this list of YA titles set in the 90's!

9. Alexa shared her thoughts on Tweet Cute by Emma Lord.

10. Evie posted an interesting piece on teaching students to enjoy reading.

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Friday 7 February 2020

The Truth About Magic | Atticus | Review

“All she wanted was that cozy love the kind that felt like hot chocolate, rainstorms or wood fires in small houses. Hard to describe but you know when you got it.”
Once again, Instagram-famous Atticus brings us a stunningly beautiful collection of short poems. In his third collection, The Truth About Magic, Atticus takes on Youth, Love, Adventure, Her, Darkness, Words and Stars, each the title of a new chapter with themed poems.

I'm not really one to read poetry - I usually struggle, get bored, or long for some characters or dragons or something - but Atticus' short snippets of beautiful words always draw me in. Perhaps it's their short length that grabs me, or that so many of the poems hit home or surprise me at their ending. He has a way of taking the ordinary and making it beautiful; taking those feelings and thoughts that we have as humans and describing them in a way that we perhaps haven't thought about before.

Even the dedication is beautiful:

"This book is for
the day dreamers,
the night thinkers,
the summer skinny dippers
for anyone who ever said
'the night is young'
or watched the sunrise
on a beach
far from home -
but mostly it's for you
the quiet ones
at parties
looking out of windows
wondering about the stars."

One of my favourite parts of the book is actually Atticus' final remarks, just before the acknowledgements. I think he captures the book and it's themes remarkably in this wee section.

"The truth is - magic lives in all of us who choose to look for it.
It lives in the morning in the springtime, it's in the smell of the world after the rain, or a stormy afternoon in bed on a Sunday, it's in warm sweaters and a lovers' nook, it's in those days that never end, and the days that end too soon.
It's in every spicy margarita or bathtub with rosé, it's in good books and Spanish beaches, it's in forests where the trees sway or lakes that shine back the moon.
It's in art; it's in music; it's in words. It's in you and it's in me and any of us that choose to find it. For the greatest truth about magic ... is that it's true."

Atticus' two other poem collections are Love Her Wild and The Dark Between Stars, and are, perhaps, even more beautiful than this one.

Check out Ria's poetry post: Falling Back In Love With Poetry.
Also read Blogger's Bookshelf very own poetry using book spines in this fun collaborative post here.
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Wednesday 5 February 2020

Features | January Reads

I had such a great reading month that I found two five-star reads within the first couple of weeks of the year, which is completely unheard of for me! The first was my book club pick for our January prompt 'written by an author you love', where having loved three of her books in 2019, I chose to read another Taylor Jenkins Reid novel. As you can guess, I thoroughly enjoyed After I Do and was so happy to kick off a new year of our book club by finding a book to add to my favourites list! My second five-star read of the month was Just Mercy (Bryan Stevenson), a non-fiction title which follows the author's work as a lawyer and is a tough yet inspiring read. I'd highly recommend this one if you haven't read it yet.

Whilst I won't be including every single book in this roundup, another one I have to mention in is Meat Market (Juno Dawson). I really enjoy Juno's books and this one was no exception! The story follows teenager Jana as she unexpectedly becomes a model and has to navigate the world of fashion and is formatted like a documentary which was an element I really loved.

As Anjali mentioned in a recent episode of Rants & Reviews, the key to success with our yearly vow to read challenge is selecting books you're hoping to read anyway and avoiding titles that have been sat unread on your shelf for a long time. I selected my 2020 list carefully and managed to cross off two titles in January; The Evidence Of The Affair (Taylor Jenkins Reid) and Friday Black (Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah).

I was kindly gifted my copy of short story collection Friday Black by Ria last Christmas after it made her 2019 favourites list and I'm so glad I finally got to read it. This was such an interesting read, and as with every collection there were some stories I enjoyed more than others, but there are certainly a few stories that will stick with me for a long time. Definitely one to add to your 2020 TBR if you haven't already!

Another short read, The Evidence Of The Affair is a novella told entirely through letters which made it perfect to pick up on a lunch break. Whilst it wasn't my favourite Taylor Jenkins Reid title, the format worked well for this particular story and I loved that there was a Daisy Jones reference snuck in there too! 
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Saturday 1 February 2020

Book Club | February 2020 - With A Tree Or Leaf On The Cover

For our 2020 BB Book Club we've put together another printable list of twelve different prompts, one for each month of the year. Just as we did in 2019, on the 1st day of each month we'll be introducing you to the month's prompt and the books team members each plan to read, along with some other suggested reads we think you'll love. Of course, these are just ideas so please feel free to interpret the prompts however you wish!

We're also inviting you to share photos and mini reviews of your book club picks on social media using #bloggersbookshelf or tag @bloggersbookshelf on Instagram.

Our prompt for February is...  

With A Tree Or Leaf On The Cover

What we'll be reading...

Ria's Pick: Ponti by Sharlene Teo

"Tropical leaves count right? In all seriousness I kept spotting this book all over the place and the premise had me hooked, so naturally, it's a perfect fit for this month's book club theme!"

Erin's pick: A Place For Us by Fatima Farheen Mirza

"I had planned to read this book last year, and even borrowed a copy from the library, but unfortunately didn't have time to read it. Recently I noticed my library had the audiobook available so I thought it would be the perfect choice for our February prompt!"

Anjali's Pick: The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab

"I have a confession to make: while the classic cover of this book has a tree on it, my version doesn't. But it does have a leaf pattern on it, so I'm taking it! I love Schwab's stories, and The Near Witch is one I've been meaning to read for a while now. Part of the synopsis reads "Part fairy tale, part love story, Victoria Schwab's debut novel is entirely original yet achingly familiar: a song you heard long ago, a whisper carried by the wind, and a dream you won't soon forget." Needless to say, I am super looking forward to reading it!"

Other suggested reads...

- Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson
- Maybe In Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid
- The Gifted School by Bruce Holsinger
- An American Marriage by Tayari Jones
- Far From The Tree by Robin Benway - review
- Wild Life by Liam Brown
- Ask Again Yes by Mary Beth Keane
- The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson - review

Use the hashtag #bloggersbookshelf or tag @bloggersbookshelf on Instagram to share your photos and mini reviews with us throughout the month!
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