Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Moonrise by Sarah Crossan

Title: Moonrise
Author: Sarah Crossan
Published by: Bloomsbury
Publication date: 7th September 2017
Pages: 400
Genres: Young Adult/Contemporary
Format: Paperback
Source: Review copy from the publisher.

'They think I hurt someone. 
But I didn't. You hear?
Coz people are gonna be telling you
all kinds of lies.
I need you to know the truth.'

Joe hasn't seen his brother for ten years, and it's for the most brutal of reasons. Ed is on death row.

But now Ed's execution date has been set, and Joe is determined to spend those last weeks with him, no matter what other people think...

It's always a delight to receive Sarah Crossan's latest YA novel, and this time was no different. It came in a beautiful slipcase, and the cover art is breathtaking, as usual. I was so excited to read it. If you pick up a book by Sarah Crossan, you know it's going to be fresh - something different - because, unlike the majority of YA out there... it's in verse! And if you like an emotional read, Crossan will always deliver.
Friday, 25 August 2017

16 YA Must-Reads on Mental Health

When I stopped seeing my therapist, she asked if I would give her a list of YA book recommendations which look at mental health issues in a hopeful way. She said that someone else she was seeing liked books too, but he only had a few self-help books which he would read again and again and again. And it made me realise that even for avid bookworms, it can be weirdly difficult to find new books when you're not in the industry in any way. Already, books which had helped me and which I knew had helped others were flitting into my mind, and I started work on the list. (I'm also looking to work with my local NHS mental health service to make a mental health book club in my community, specifically for young people... lots of planning to do, but hopefully it goes ahead!)

When I'd finished my list, I knew I'd share it here, too. I've done a similar post before but that was ages ago, and I'm pleased to see that lots more YA about mental health has been released since then. Here's an updated version. Hope it helps some of you, and feel free to pass it on to your local surgeries or mental health services - books can't replace medicine and/or treatment, but like running is good for the body, reading is good for the mind.
Sunday, 20 August 2017

Alex, Approximately by Jenn Bennett

Title: Alex, Approximately
Author: Jenn Bennett
Published by: Simon & Schuster
Publication date: 27th July 2017
Pages: 388
Genres: Young Adult/Contemporary/Romance
Format: Paperback
Source: Review copy from the publisher.

Bailey Rydell has found the boy of her dreams. 'Alex' is smart and sweet and loves the same movies as her. The only problem?

They haven't actually met...

So when Bailey moves to California to be with her dad, who happens to live in the same town as her online crush, she decides to use all her detective skills to track him down. Turns out, it's not easy finding someone when you don't even know their real name. And with the irritating but charismatic local surfer distracting her at every turn, will she ever get to meet the mysterious 'Alex'?

I've found it really difficult to read books this year. Before and during exams, I suppose I got out of the habit, and it has proved much harder to get back into the swing of things than I thought it would be when I wrote that excitable and wistful post on 'books I'm going to read this summer'. So innocent, so naive. Months passed. I barely put a dent in the TBR that is made up of several piles lining the entirety of my longest bedroom wall.
Tuesday, 15 August 2017

In Photos: Wandering Around Shoreditch With a Camera and a Bag Full of Onion Rings

I mean, that's literally what we did for hours. What else was I supposed to call this post?

On Wednesday 9th August, I finally got to meet one of my oldest blogging friends, Hawwa. Back in the day, she'd email me under the code-name Jazz and fangirl over my hair. Six years later, we're actual friends, she's long since revealed her actual name to me, and she wouldn't be caught dead fangirling over anything to do with me even if you offered her a hundred quid. You can see a brief history of our 'friendship' (online annoyance might be a better term?) here.

We had a very ~aesthetic~ day. If you can't hipster in Shoreditch (that's in London, for any of my far away readers), where can you hipster, am I right kids?

Thursday, 10 August 2017

One Italian Summer by Keris Stainton

Title: One Italian Summer
Author: Keris Stainton
Published by: Hot Key Books
Publication date: 4th May 2017
Pages: 241
Genres: Young Adult/Contemporary/Romance/Grief/Travel
Format: Paperback
Source: Review copy from the publisher.

Milly loves her sisters more than anything - they are her best friends. But this holiday is different. The loss of their dad has left a gaping hole in their lives that none of them know how to fill. Heartbreak is a hard thing to fix...

Still, there is plenty to keep the girls busy in Rome. A family wedding. Food, wine, parties and sun. And of course Luke... Luke is hot, there is no way around that. And Milly will always have a crush on him. But this summer is about family, being together, and learning to live without Dad. It isn't about Luke at all... is it?

If you haven't read anything by Keris Stainton before, one of the many things she is good at is balancing gritty realism with perfect escapism. One Italian Summer's rather beautiful cover might lead you to believe that it's a fun, romantic, summer adventure - and it is - but it also focuses heavily on grief.
Saturday, 5 August 2017

BLOG TOUR: A Change is Gonna Come | #ChangeBook

It annoys me that the book in the photo is slightly off-centre so now I'm pointing it out to you. You can't un-see it. Sorry.

A Change is Gonna Come is a collection of stories and poems about change from twelve amazing BAME (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic) writers. It is timely, aptly-titled, and one of the books of the year. Because a change is going to come - and this book's publication is another step towards that goal.