September has been a busy month. I spent most of it still at home in London with my family (since I live in Amsterdam now, it’s nice to be home with them for a while). I also had the most amazing holiday in Jordan! It was an incredible trip – I did and saw so much, and I was lucky enough to stay with the nicest family ever! I’ll be writing a blog about it on a new travel blog I occasionally write for, so be sure to check that out if you’re interested (I’ll write a post on this blog directing you to it once it’s up 🙂 ).
Anyway…back to the books 😉
- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J. K. Rowling
Yes, I’m still on my HP binge. My favourite part in this book is the Quidditch World Cup scene at the start. I always imagined myself being there, cheering myself hoarse with the rest of the gang. Does that make me a sad-o? Ok, don’t answer that. 5/5 stars
- A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness
I’d seen this book quite a lot on Book Tube so I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to read it for myself this month. The story itself was so heart wrenching; it actually made me cry (shh, don’t tell anyone). The illustrations in the book were also amazing and so harrowing to look at. 3/5 stars
- Fantastic Mr Dahl by Michael Rosen
September the 13th was Roald Dahl day. This short book was the perfect way to commemorate his life. Rosen met Dahl many years ago and so the book is filled with little anecdotes about that peculiar meeting and about Dahl’s life. It’s funny and a lovely read. 4/5 stars
- Gregor the Overlander by Suzanne Collins
I randomly found this book and it intrigued me because it was written by the author of The Hunger Games which I loved (well, I loved the first one at least, the other two were a bit ‘meh’). This book is also part of a series but I don’t think I’ll be continuing it because a. I’m too lazy to start a series right now, and b. it wasn’t the most gripping of novels (which might have been because it’s targeted to a younger audience). However, saying all that, I did enjoy the adventure in this book, it was fun and relatively exciting, and I was so glad that it didn’t really end on a cliffhanger. 3/5 stars
- Going Solo by Roald Dahl
This was one of the few Dahl books that I hadn’t read yet. I’m always amazed at how impressive and exciting Dahl’s life was. I would have loved to have met him – I have so many questions that I want to ask! Even though I did enjoy this book, I didn’t think it was nearly as humorous as his other semi-autobiographical book, Boy. 3/5 stars
- Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J. K. Rowling, John Tiffany and Jack Thorne
Hmm, don’t really know what to say about this one. It seems to have divided the internet based on reviews that I’ve read. I enjoyed the overall plot and would have probably given it a higher rating if it wasn’t so directly linked to the HP universe that I grew up with. It just wasn’t five star material in my opinion because it irked me too much. 3/5 stars
- Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J. K. Rowling
I have a love/hate relationship with this one because on the one hand it’s so exciting, and one the hand *SPOILER ALERT* my beloved Sirius dies. Reading it again this month showed me that I’m still not over it. Still have to give it full marks though..5/5 stars
- Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino
This was a collection of short, page long musings about cities. Marco Polo describes 55 cities to Emperor Kublai Khan, each one more beautiful and fantastical than the last. It was a very quick read and I really enjoyed the lyricism of the prose. 3/5 stars
- The Swallows of Kabul by Yasmina Khadra
Khadra is an Algerian author that I’ve been obsessed with since I discovered him last year. He writes about the Arab world in an imformed and captivating way. This short novel was about the devastation and upheaval that the Taliban has caused in Afghanistan. Khadra writes about pain, love, and ultimate sacrifice in a way that keeps you riveted till the very last page. 4/5 stars
- The Sirens of Baghdad by Yasmina Khadra
This Khadra novel discusses the theme of Islamic fundamentalism following the US invasion of Iraq. American soldiers leave destruction and humilation in their wake, causing some young Iraqi men to want to take matters into their own hands. For me, this was a really powerful novel as it draws attention to the diversity of human nature and how an individual can struggle with morality. 4/5 stars
- Nevernight by Jay Kristoff
I loved this book! It was so fast paced and creative. Plus, the protagonist was a kick-ass female, and you know how much I love those types of characters. Keep a look out for a more detailed review that I’ll be posting soon. 5/5 stars
So that’s what I managed to read this month.
I also picked up a few books when I attended a book fair in Jordan. I know, the book fair sounds totally random, but it was a great experience. Most of the books on sale were in Arabic, but I found a few (random ones) in English:
- The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran
- Johnny and the Bomb by Terry Pratchett
- December Heat by Luiz Alfredo Garcia-Rosa
It was pretty cool to walk around all the stalls, to see the vast amount of books on sale, and to try and guess their English equivalents based on the covers. It was also amazing to be surrounded by so many bibliophiles 🙂
I’m heading back to Amsterdam and to my busy life in a couple of days, so I can’t imagine I’ll be able to read much in the coming month. I’m going to try and read the new ones I bought though so I can let you know if they were any good.
Thank you for getting through this super long post. Hope you all had a good September and wishing you a lovely October!