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Codename Villanelle

Codename Villanelle by Luke Jennings

The first installment of Luke Jennings Killing Eve series introduces us to one of the world’s most skilled assassin’s, Villanelle. Villanelle is a codename for the assassin who lives a luxurious life thanks to her special skills murdering the worlds richest and most powerful. Eve Polastri is a former MI6 operative who is hired to track and find the assassin responsible for the murder of an influential Russian politition. Eve lives a quiet and fairly unextraordinary life accepts the job and her life changes forever as a game of cat and mouse plays out between Villanelle and Eve.

This book is the basis of the hit TV series of the same name; Killing Eve. If I’m being honest I feel as though the TV series was actually better than the book and this surprised me. Don’t get me wrong I liked the book but it didn’t seem to provide the same sort of tension or excitement as the TV series and I usually find it the opposite.

I didn’t feel as though I was on the edge of my seat the same as other novels I have read and maybe it was because I have already seen the TV show (definitely did it in the wrong order) I felt as though I had no input on the characters.

I like the characters of the book and feel they are really interesting however I do feel they have some flaws. Villanelle is described as someone who cares for no-one and only mimics feelings yet she has a companian throughout.

The end of the book I found frustrating and that’s only because I don’t particularly like big cliffhangers which this book definitely has. That is completely a personal opinion and some people really like the tension of a cliffhanger but I just get annoyed.

Overall, I think that the book was good but I did prefer the TV series.

Many thanks, Caitlin X

The Book of Hidden Things

The Book of Hidden Things by Francesco Dimitri is his debute English novel.

It is a fantasy novel which follows 4 childhood friends as they discover more and more about the town they lived in and themselves. They have a pact where every year they meet at a restaurant in their childhood town and when Art (one of the friends) doesn’t turn up events start to mirror those of 20 years ago. He is the one member who insisted on this pact and when he doesn’t show it is worrying. The 3 friends stay in town and investigate his disappearance.

I really enjoyed this book and I loved the mystery to it. As I read I continued to wonder what was going to happen next which I think is great in a book. Although this is a fantasy book it isn’t really heavy on fantasy element. Towards the end there is more of those elements however there is more of a focus on the characters.

I thought the characters were realistic and well written but at times they are not all likeable. Which I don’t think is a bad thing. In life there are people that you like and those not so much and therefore having this in the book almost makes it more realistic. It looks at the relationship between the character in depth which is something I really enjoyed. They are not perfect and they all have flaws and do things we really hate about them. I also like this about the characters as it adds dimension to the book.

I really like this book and would recommend it to those who not only like fantasy novels but also phycological thriller and mysteries.

Many thanks, Caitlin X
(Ps please comment if you have read this book or are going to)

Libraries

Libraries are places where I generally don’t go to but there isn’t really a specific reason as to why not. I think libraries are a great opportunity to let people read without paying the prices for individual books.

Wills Memorial Library

I remember being in primary school and taking a class trip to the local library. I was always to excited to choose a book and look at all the options. Even if someone in my class didn’t like to read they generally liked to go through the books and choose one. Whether that be a comic style book or a novel style book. I think at that age libraries are great as not only do the kids get out of class they also choose a book that they want to read and can start to see a style that suits them.

I think libraries should be used more often and I am someone who should use one more as well. I admit I should use them more! Not only is there a variety of books there is also staff there to help you. If you’re looking for a specific book and you can help it or you just want some advice on books there is someone there to help you and answer your questions. If you’re not sure how the library organised then just ask and the staff can explain everything you need to know.

However, they are not always up to date with new releases so if you’re looking for a newly published book then this might not be your best option. It also depends the size of the library whether they have as many books on offer. There is also the issue of the book your wanting already having been taken out by someone else.

I would say that overall libraries are a great service and should be used more to allow more people to enjoy reading. It provides books alongside a quiet place to enjoy them. So I hope that more people use them and I will be!

Many thanks, Caitlin x

(PS please comment your opinion on libraries or any alternatives)

Travel Books – Lonely Planet

The amount of travel books available to read is huge however in this post I am going to talk about Lonely Planets releases.

I love to read and browse Lonely Planets travel books and see all the different destinations I would want to go to. I think most of these books give you the best photos and the idealistic travels however it does often provide inspiration for your travels.

There are also many different types of books that Lonely Planet has released such as; specific destinations, types of travel and round ups. These can all provide different information and depending what your after can help you whilst at your destination by giving you tips for your travels.

  On  Lonely Planets website you can get loads of information on destinations however nothing compares to having actual pages to flip through and write notes on or bookmark. I think for travel books it is fun to go through and mark your favourite destinations or activities and write notes next to articles. It allows you to be involved and plan your own journey with all you need in one book that’s right infront of you. It is also ideal when you are travelling to carry one with you as you won’t always have access to the internet ad can still get all the information you require.

Books such as ‘Packing List’ and ‘Travel tips’ are also very helpful. I always find that when I go on holiday I write constant lists of what I need to pack to ensure I don’t forget anything so having a specific book for that is great. To ensure you have all the necessities before you make a trip. Tips to help you travel also helps as sometimes you don’t know everything you need to before you travel (which is fine) however they can often make your trip goes smoother.

Due to the vast amount of different travel books I would highly recommend getting one for your chosen destination. Not only will it give you a bit on insight on what to expect but could give you ideas and hints for travelling there.

Many thanks, Caitlin x

(Ps please comment if you use travel books at all!)

Yes Please

Yes Please is a non-fiction book written by American comedian and actress Amy Poehler which was released in 2014. In this book Amy shares stories from her life about how she became the well known comedian/actress she is today. It features personal, funny stories on everything from relationships, to working and parenthood. It is part-memoir, part self help where she offers her advice on things such as anxiety and self doubt.

As a fan of her work on SNL and Parks and Recreation as well as watching her comedy at UCB (on youtube!) I couldn’t wait to read this!

The book is very honest and open with Amy sharing a lot of her life. It follows her professional journey through her comedy in Chicago, her time on SNL and her experiences on Parks and Recreation. We hear about how she help found the Upright Citizens Brigade that is a vital part of many comedians career. It is inspirational as you see that she didn’t become famous overnight and she has worked hard throughout her life. She is incredibly talented but she also shares her personal stories of relationships and parenthood. She is honest and that is something I admire. I loved this book and I loved Amy Poehler even more after reading this!

I personally listened to the audio book where Amy herself narrated alongside guests such as Seth Myers, Mike Schur and her parents. I also have both the hardback and paperback versions (which is definitely overkill but I just couldn’t not have them!) I really liked listening to the audiobook for this as it adds more of her personality into the words she has written. There are even a few extra anecdotes you can enjoy! I found that I couldn’t stop listening to the audio book as it is not only a great book but full of personality. It is themed and easy to follow. It is well written and although throughout the book she declares that she hated writing it, I feel it paid off. She was honest about the difficulties of writing a book which I liked. It’s not always easy to write.

I loved this book and would highly recommend (especially to those who like Amy Poehlers work). She is honest and open whilst sharing this with humour intertwined. I love the book but I would highly recommend that you listen to the audio book. It is a perfect example of when the audio book may be better than the printed copy!

Many thanks, Caitlin x

(PS please comment your opinion of this book!)

The Lincoln Rhyme Series

Recently on twitter @LoveBooksGroup ran a competition to win two books from the Lincoln Rhyme Series and one from the Katheryn Dance Series by Jeffery Deaver, alongside different teas and a cute notebook, and I was lucky enough to win. (Many thanks to @LoveBooksGroup).

I had never heard of this author or this series before seeing this competition and once I had read a little about them I was very interested.

Jeffery Deaver is a former journalist and attorney who is an international best seller and has released over 35 novels. He mainly writes mystery/crime novels but he has also released a non-fiction book that looks at law.

The Lincoln Rhyme series is focused on the central character of Lincoln Rhyme who is a former NYPD homicide detective who is now a forensic consultant with the department. This change of role was due to an accident which resulted in Rhyme becoming a quadriplegic. He is partnered with Amelia Sachs who acts as his eyes as she walks through the crime scene.

Personally, I really liked the concept of these books as I love crime novels but having the main character as a quadriplegic is not only a great way to show disability is not something to shy away from when writing and having the main character quadriplegic hightens this but also it lets you see the stories and crime scenes from a different view as he uses his partner as his eyes.

I have not yet read them but I can’t wait! The two books from this series are; The Burning Wire and The Skin Collector.

The third book I was lucky enough to win was Roadside Crosses which is an installment in Deavers Kathryn Dance series. Kathryn Dance is a Special Agent in the Central Bureau of Investigation of the state of California. This character was originally introduced in one of the Lincoln Rhyme novels before Deaver went and dedicated a new series to her. Kathryn Dance is an expert in Kensics and interrogation and is originally assigned to interogate Daniel Pell, a convicted murderer.

As you can imagine this is also a series that I am interested in reading as I also love any book that has a spy aspect to it, and although she isn’t a spy she is a special agent so close enough!

I also was sent 4 different types of tea from ‘eteaket’ and a cute notebook.

Again thanks to LoveBooksGroup and I recommend you follow them on twitter!

Many thanks, Caitlin x

(ps please comment if you have read any of the books from these series’ or by the author Jeffery Deaver.)

Imaginary Friend by Stephen Chbosky

‘Imaginary Friend’ is a book written by Stephen Chbosky which is due to be released in October. This is a release I am scored about as Chbosky first novel ‘Perks of being a Wallflower’ was a great read that I loved.

‘Perks of being a wallflower’ was then made into a film which Chbosky wrote and directed himself. Since then he has written screenplays such as The live action Beauty and the Beast.

‘Imaginary Friends’ is his second novel and follows Kate Reese. Kate is a single mother who flees an abusive relationship by moving to a new town and starting over with her son. But Mill Grove, Pennsylvania is not the place they thought it would be… after her son disappears into the woods their life begins to unravel. This disappearance is strangely familiar with a similar occurrence happening 50 years prior. When he returns 6 days later it is a relief to find him unharmed but he isn’t the same as he was before. He doesn’t come back alone and is accompanied with a voice only he can hear.

This book is thrilling and eery with a masterpiece of imagination and emotion.

I was lucky enough to be sent a link to where I could read the first couple of chapters and so far I am liking it and can’t wait till October. As with every post I will say that reading is entirely a personal choice and which books you like could be completely different to other so although I am recommending it if you don’t like it that’s fine too,

If you would like to get an extract from this book follow this link!

http://netgal.ly/CIsH6X

Many thanks, Caitlin x

(PS please comment if you read the extract and your opinion so far!)