Category Literature

Review: My Year of Rest and Relaxation, Ottessa Moshfegh

I read My Year of Rest and Relaxation over a couple of days while I was ill last week, and there’s definitely something quite claustrophobic and nightmarish about certainly the story of a woman trying to sleep for a year, while you yourself are unwell and sleeping a lot. I had been wanting to read […]

Review: Fen, Daisy Johnson

It took me a while to get into the stories of Fen by Daisy Johnson, and then it took me a little while to get out of them again. Reading these stories is like getting lost in the blurry, muddy fenland that Johnson is writing about. At some point you begin to question what is […]

What I’ll be reading in 2020

In the gloomy, dark January in which I have been doing Dry-January-Veganuary-No-Planuary (fun!), I’ve been finding myself reaching for a book more often than ever, and making good headway into my 2020 reading plans. Someone I follow on Instagram recently said that they felt like reading could sometimes seem like a competition where everyone is […]

Review: My Sister, the Serial Killer, Oyinkan Braithwaite

Sometimes you want to read something easy, fun and light-hearted. In may ways it’s funny that I chose a book about a serial killer in order to fulfil this. I’m sure you’ve all heard that My Sister, the Serial Killer is all of these things and more – it’s short and snappy, darkly funny and […]

Review: Mouthful of Birds, Samanta Schweblin

It’s been a while since I’ve read anything as creepy, compelling and utterly bizarre as Samanta Schweblin’s collection of short stories, Mouthful of Birds. From the titular story about a father who discovers his daughter’s compulsion to eat live birds, to stories about fanatical hair-plucking women and the lengths a couple will go to get […]

What I read in 2019

This year I challenged myself to read 30 books which I was very proud to have achieved until my friend told me she was on her 80th in November! I wanted to make more time for reading, for reflecting on what I read, and to record every book that I read. So here’s my list […]

Review: Once Upon a River, Diane Setterfield

I’ve been reading a lot of clever and ‘concentrate-y’ books (read: lit fic?) recently and was really missing the power of a novel of good length and brilliant story. In came Once Upon a River by Diane Setterfield at just the right time. Set in a rural village community upon the banks of the river […]

An ode to the first draft

Ok, I finished a rough first draft of a short story about ten minutes ago, and nothing felt more apt than writing a speedy blog post about just how much I love this feeling (and just how much I dread the next stage of the process). As most people know, the first draft of anything […]

Review: Autumn, Ali Smith

Have I mentioned that Autumn is my favourite time of year? Seven years of writing about Autumn on this blog later, I think it’s fair to say I’ve made my feelings about this season pretty clear. So it seems apt that the most recent book I read was the beautiful Autumn by Ali Smith which […]

Review: Under the Greenwood Tree, Thomas Hardy

Sometimes it’s nice to go back to an author where you know exactly what you’re going to get. As I make my way through Hardy’s rural back catalogue, I am conscious of the fact that I am knowingly avoiding the most depressing and shocking of his titles, Jude the Obscure. And, of course, it’s often […]