Book Haul: Birthday 2016

dscf1325Things have been rather quiet here over the past week, but I do feel as though I have a justified reason – my birthday! And , even better, both myself and my boyfriend had nine blissful days off together. Anyone in a relationship with a chef will know the pain of their incredibly unsociable working hours, so we were determined to make the most of every single second. Sadly, this did mean pulling back on the blog work, but I am now feeling refreshed and ready to go!

I did not actually ask for any specific books for my birthday. This made it even more exciting as I literally had no clue what the book shaped presents were! I was very spoilt this year, and not only in bookish terms  (let’s just say I have enough chocolate to last me through for a year). Amazingly, despite making no request, I did actually receive a grand total of nine books!

My boyfriend bought me a massive seven of these books, and what made it even more exciting was the fact that he had picked each one by himself, trusting his own instincts and my personal preferences to make his selections.


Two of these books are actually the same book, but different versions, and that is the much raved over book, A Monster Calls. Originally my partner had bought me the beautiful illustrated paperback which I had pined for during several Waterstones trips. After seeing the equally gorgeous Hardback Collector’s Edition, he had very generously bought me that one too! I have already read this book at the time of writing this, including all the bonus material from the Collector’s Edition, and my review will be up shortly.


Next we have Geek Love, a book which has been in my hand too many times, only to be set back down because of my inner money spending radar. I have wanted to read this book for the longest time, perhaps even since I first started watching BookTube. It sounds completely wacky and weird, but ridiculously entertaining as well and I am sure I will be completely enthralled.

I recently saw the film adaptation of The Light Between Oceans, and much to my book lover’s disgust, I saw the film before reading the actuall book. Thankfully I can now rectify this sin! The film was stunningly presented, and the acting truly superb. Having said that, I did feel quite bored at moments, with the film feeling longer than it should have been. Because of the emotional assault within the story , I think this is going to lend itself to a much better degree within a written format, and I am hoping it will live up to my expectations.


Contrastingly to this, I have actually read the original novel of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, but have not actually watched the new film adaptation. Whilst I wish to rectify this mistake,  I am much more eager to continue on with the series, and can now do this because of my partner’s wonderful gift choices! He also picked me up a stunning little book, The Dog Who Dared To Dream, which I had never heard of before. I adore nothing more than the excitement of being given a gift which you know nothing about, and the anticipation which comes with jumping into the unknown. It’s pretty obvious why my boyfriend chose this book (the blurb states it follows a dog), and I am very eager to see if the contents are as beautiful as the cover design and French flaps.


Lastly, he picked me up another of the Penguin English Library Classics, this time D. H. Lawrence’s Sons and Lovers. I am attempting to collect all of these editions, and I am slowly accomplishing my goal, with my boyfriend playing a central role in the buying process – true love at its strongest!

The last two books were presents from my boyfriend’s lovely parents, and were also completely unexpected. The first is a book I have wanted the second I knew of it’s existence. I am a huge Stephen King fan, and I have always enjoyed his non-fiction writing as much as his epic fictional ones. His book, On Writing, is not only a chance to delve into more of his non-fiction, but is also the perfect gift for me  as an aspiring writer. It follows King as he discusses his writing processes, and his work as an author, and I am hoping to not only get tips, but to also gain inspiration from such a prolific and iconic writer.

A few weeks ago whilst perusing the shelves of my local bookshop, my boyfriend spotted a new edition of A Christmas Carol, published by Norton. I have a collection of Norton books as they are great for academic studies and came in very handy whilst studying for my English Literature Degree. Whilst this edition is not necessarily academic, it is quite simply the perfect gift for a Charles Dickens lover, which I am sure you all know by now applies to me. This version not only gives you the classic story, but also has reproductions on the opposite pages of the original handwritten manuscript by Charles Dickens! As a Dickens devotee, this is such a lovely and very special gift, and I must thank not only my boyfriend’s parents, but also my boyfriend himself for spotting it and informing them of the book! It also has a foreword by Colm Toibin, and will definitely be on my To Read List for December.

I cannot explain how lucky I feel to be surrounded by such important people who understand my passion for Literature. Now all that is left is to thank them in the best possibly way and get reading!




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