Books I’ve Been Reading (01.2019)

I used to be a massive bookworm when I was a kid — the kind of kid who'd steal her sister's library pass to borrow more books, as she'd already hit her limit. Then 'being a student' and 'pretending to be an adult' got the best of me and my book reading habits were no longer a habit.

However, after meeting my friend Tash for dinner, she reminded me how important it is to read — knowledge is power after all. It inspired me to finally buy those books I had in my Amazon basket and make it my mission to start reading much more in the new year.

Conversations With Friends by Sally Rooney

Described as a, "Sharply intelligent novel about two college students and the strange, unexpected connection they forge with a married couple", it's way more complex and messy than that.

Conversations With Friends follows the lives of four different people that get themselves intertwined in inconventional and intricate relationships, which show the difficulties life can bring and the psychological struggles that people have.

A definite page turner for me, as the story was told in such a gripping way I struggled to put it down. In fact, it's the book that really got me back into reading again.

Normal People by Sally Rooney

Normal People is described as a, "Girl-meets-boy story with a difference, interrogating the difficulties of sincere communication in a complicated, post-ironic world.

The book is a love about two kids from a rural town in Ireland, coming from different worlds and showing how one person can impact one's life. As it shows how they go through their late teenage years and into their twenties and as their characters develop, they start to understand themselves better, and to see the complexities in each other and their 'relationship'.

I really enjoyed reading the book and probably finished reading it in 3 days, though I did get very frustrated and heartbroken with the characters' decisions. It was an emotional rollercoaster. If you loved Conversations With Friends, this is a must read.

Everything I Know About Love by Dolly Alderton

You may know Dolly from The High Low podcast — if you don't, GET. ON. IT. — and she's just as hilarious and witty on paper. Everything I Know About Love is really a memoire about life and sisterhood.

She takes you through the stages you go through whilst growing up: good friends, bad friends, getting a job, bad dating stories, living on your own — you name it, it'll be in there.

Her voice is so relatable and the book is filled with laugh-out-loud anecdotes that will make it hard to put the book away.

I bought the hardcover in 2018, but never got around to reading it, but her new paperback release includes a new chapter on 'Everything I Know At 30'.

Five Star Billionaire by Tash Aw

Five Star Billionare is a book that follows the the lives of 5 newcomers to Shanghai — a golddigger, property magnate, pop star, entrepreneur and guru.

The different characters are interweaved in a Chinese-Asian settings, which were not completely foreign to me, but were brought to life by the author. The story gives a rare insight into the lives, aspirations and challenges immigrants face when trying to seeking fame and fortune in a metropolitan city that is Shanghai.

I found it a very easy-to-read, engrossing book, which made it very hard to put down at times. It covers topics that I personally really resonated with having lived in London and Paris, such as the sense of loneliness and suffocation in big cities, and the fast pace of life.

Next on my wish list? I'd love to read Becoming by Michelle Obama, Five Perfect Strangers by Liane Moriarty and This Is Going To Hurt by Adam Kay.

I've also got a copy of White Teeth by Zadie Smith on my nightstand, which I'm yet to start reading. Despite this rather long list, I'm still taking recommendations though —sharing is caring!