2015 Reading Update | 1

06 March 2015

I'm not a huge fan of New Years Resolutions.
I know I won't stick to them, let alone remember them half way through the year.
That being said I made one resolution for 2015: Read 50 books. 
So here's a little update on the books I've read so far in 2015!
(In the order read)

INFERNO | Dan Brown
I enjoy the fast pace historical thrillers of Dan Brown. Inferno was more or less the same story. Although I found the book entertaining and enjoyable, there's only so many times a history professor from Harvard can save the world. However, Dan Brown has an amazing ability to take his research and spin it into a fantastic story.

I literally could not put this book down! I found the book to be exceptionally researched and well written. The characters are perfectly developed and I couldn't help but falling in love with them despite  their flaws. The mysterious theme follows you even after you've finished the book. It's hard to believe that this book is the author's first work, but I'm looking forward to seeing what Burton has in store for us in the further!

The story of Elizabeth Woodville is known across the English speaking world. However, the history of this extraordinary woman is masked behind the powerful men of her time. I applaud MacGibbon for piecing together Elizabeth's story. However, there are more than one flaws in this biography. Names are sometimes accidentally swapped and there are quite a few typos. Considering this is one of the very few biographies of the queen you can easily get past those mistakes. 

I'm slightly ashamed I hadn't read this sooner. Getting to read some of the wizarding fairy tales mentioned in Harry Potter made the child in me extremely happy. Not to mention, Dumbledore has some excellent annotations and notes for every story! I recommend this to any Harry Potter fan!

Margaret Beaufort has to be one of my favorite people in all of history. A widow and mother at 13, Margaret dedicated her life to putting her son, Henry Tudor, on the throne. Elizabeth Norton presents Margaret in a realistic yet admirable way. Loved this biography!

PERSUASION | Jane Austen 
For me, Jane Austen novels are extremely hard to get into. However, every one of her books gets me hooked midway to the point where I'm devouring every word! Persuasion was no exception. Set in some of my favorite places in England, it was a beautiful and hilarious read. Persuasion has to be my favorite Jane Austen novel so far (there are still a couple I have yet to read). 

BRING UP THE BODIES | Hilary Mantel 
After re-reading Wolf Hall a couple months ago and LOVING IT, I was nervous to read Bring Up the Bodies. How could it compare? Within the first few pages I was hooked. Having already been introduced to most of these characters in Wolf Hall, I found Bring Up the Bodies to be even more entertaining than its predecessor!

COMMON SENSE | Thomas Paine
Common Sense is the 1776 pamphlet written by Thomas Paine just before America declared itself independent. Paine critically questions the monarchy and its purpose, calling out for Colonist to see common sense. It's a bit of a hard read but should be read by all Americans/ anyone interested in American history at some point.

THE PROMISE | Ann Weisgarber
To be honest, I probably wouldn't have picked this book up myself. As a historian, I have a hard time reading historical fiction that isn't based on real people. I'll either love it or hate it. However, my mom came home one day with a signed copy of The Promise having just met the author. Ann Weisgarber wrote "Sara, may your love of history help you see the world in new ways". So I began reading it the next day. The story takes place in Galveston during the 1900 hurricane, which is such a fascinating part of Texas history. Having not grown up in the Houston/Galveston area herself, Ann stretches history slightly (dairy farms on the island?), but the story is very readable and the characters highly developed.

Wow. I mean wow. I have never read a book like this. I don't want to give too much away because this book is so much better if you don't know anything about it. So, instead I'll tell you how I came across Elizabeth is Missing. On my week long visit back to Bristol for graduation, I had limited space in my suitcase. I was packing everything from my Bristol flat to take back to Texas. Somehow, I found myself in a Waterstones looking for a book that isn't out in the US yet (H is for Hawk). I was disappointed to see there was only a hardback edition for sale (I had limited space AND a strict weight guideline to follow) so I decided to find a paperback book instead. I picked up Elizabeth is Missing and was immediately intrigued. Long story short, I read the entire book that day. I could not recommend this book more!

Keep up to date with what I'm reading on Goodreads!

Happy Friday!

No Comments Yet, Leave Yours!

This blog is a positive space. I reserve the right to remove any comments that I feel may be offensive.