Saturday, 29 August 2020

August Reads!


Hello Readers! I know the months are passing really quickly, but when I see the books I read this month, it feels like I read those books a long time back. Isn’t that weird?

Luckily this month, I have read more good books than bad, which is just SO REFRESHING! I have left that phase of quarantine where I tried to make new recipes or did chores or never wanted to leave my home. The only common thing is reading, but now that’s gone too because I am stuck in a reading slump. Since the past one week, I didn’t even think of reading. I didn’t even have any desire to pick up a book. I have just been re-watching Schitt’s Creek & Grey’s Anatomy. But that needs to change because so many unread books in my bookshelf are giving me the puppy dog eyes. I hope I give in soon enough & get back at it!

Even with ONE WEEK of no reading, I somehow managed to read EIGHT BOOKS in August. I have reviewed most of them, but check them out anyway, okay?

 

~~THE BEST~~

THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW by A.J. FINN

Genre: Mystery

Pages: 455

My Rating: 4/5

The Woman in the Window is one of the best thrillers I have read in a while. It was definitely a step up after reading predictable thrillers like The Silent Patient or The Guest List. This novel might not be as adventurous as a few others, but there are a lot of elements of surprise. The portrayal of Anna Fox throughout the novel is brilliant. I liked the built-up mystery surrounding her neighbours – The Russels. The aspect of a psychologist facing mental challenges was compelling & written with precision & empathy. The story could be told in about 10 sentences, but all the mystery created with a bunch of ups & downs till the end was such a pleasurable experience to read!

Check out the full review here!

 

1984 by GEORGE ORWELL

Genre: Classic

Pages: 237

My Rating: 4/5

It took me a while to read 1984 because it isn’t the kind of book I usually read. But it definitely is THE BOOK that everyone should read.

There are so many themes in that novel & so much content. It is a political satire written in 1949 but a lot of the things said in the book apply even today. There are so many concepts that are surely a bit exaggerated, but they are so scary if they ever become real. In my opinion, 1984 should be mandatory reading in education. This book is just so important and so beyond me that I wouldn’t feel right reviewing it.

Check out some of the quotes here!


LIGHT FILTERS IN by CAROLINE KAUFMAN

Genre: Poetry

Pages: 224

My Rating: 5/5

Whenever I read modern poetry, it only really reaches me in a few poems throughout the whole book. But, when I read Light Filters In, I finally found many poems that just hit me. I liked it even better than Rupi Kaur’s Sun and Her Flowers.

The chapters are divided into The Darkness Falls, The Night Persists, The Dawn Breaks & The Sun Rises. While I cannot directly relate to some of the poems, I was able to understand women who have been through such times. It was a whole other experience reading this book of poems. Recommended!

 

UNACCUSTOMED EARTH by JHUMPA LAHIRI

Genre: Short Stories / Contemporary

Pages: 352

My Rating: 4.5/5

Unaccustomed Earth is a book of short stories which is the signature style of Jhumpa Lahiri & also the best way in which she shines. The book is divided into 2 parts. The first part contains FIVE short stories whereas the second part is one whole story consisting of THREE short chapters. Both the parts are equally beautiful & you get really sunk into it. All your emotions are overwhelmed while reading this book.

Though the writing is simple with one sentence after other, when you look at it as a whole, it is just one big bundle of overflowing emotions. About estranged familial bonds coming together. About lost love. About an impossible unrequited love. About sibling connections. About common roots but uncommon futures. About fighting relentlessly for love only to lose. About seeking a companion in old age. About illnesses breaking a family apart but at times also mending them back together.

I might just still be overwhelmed by the power of words. Overwhelmed by the beauty of it. Overwhelmed by the idiosyncrasy of literature itself in its strongest form. Overwhelmed by the simplicity of elegance in all the short stories in Unaccustomed Earth.

Check out the full review here!

 

HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS by J.K. ROWLING

Genre: Fantasy

Pages: 759

My Rating: 5/5

As you all know, I had decided to re-read Harry Potter this year. I read Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince in early June. It had gotten a bit dark to read it again with so many deaths. So, it took a while for me to pick the last book. After more than 2 months, I finally read it and finished it in 3 days or so! Honestly, there is nothing more WHOLESOME than reading Harry Potter. The minute I finished, I wanted to start all over again!

 

~~THE MEDIOCRE~~

THE UNDERGROUND RAILROAD by COLSON WHITEHEAD

Genre: Historical Fiction

Pages: 306

My Rating: 3.5/5

The Underground Railroad won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 2017 & received critical acclaim. Many noteworthy people have recommended this book ever since. This book is based on the real underground railway which was a bunch of safehouses to save black lives. In the book though, it is an actual underground railroad connecting different states in the US. I liked this bit of fictional touch to the original story.

The novel talks about the cruelty, injustice & violence caused to black people in America. It talks so harshly about the racism that was built in centuries ago & which still exists. Because of the main motto of these books, it got the recognition it deserves. In the era where we still have to protest & chant ‘Black Lives Matter’, these books just give us another reason to. I really liked to read and learn these stories of coloured people back in the day; their journey, their hardships and so much more. So, hear me when I say that the book has a brilliant story BUT the story writing or story telling is not as good.

Check out the full review here!


HARRY POTTER AND THE CURSED CHILD

Genre: Fantasy

Pages: 343

My Rating: 2/5

I finally read this book but it would have been better if I had left it alone. Like so many Potterheads, I was disappointed. There are SO MANY careless loopholes & the idea of writing this is just so outrageous.

I might have finished this in a day only because it's Harry Potter content and not because it's actually good. I found the story to be quite juvenile and not at par in tone and quality set in the first 7 books which are made of pure gold.

 

~~THE WORST~~

THE WIND-UP BIRD CHRONICLE by HARUKU MURAKAMI

Genre: Magical Realism

Pages: 607

My Rating: 2/5

The only enjoyment I got from this 607-page book was when I completely thrashed it in my book review! I honestly cannot spend another minute writing about this book.

Check out the full review here!



That sums it up. I know there are still 3 days before the month ends. But, I honestly don’t have it in me to read & complete even 1 book in these 3 days. Need your support to get through this, folks!

Until next time,

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