Why You Should Join A Book Club

Why You Should Join A Book Club

Last year I did something a little out of my comfort zone

Now, I’ll admit, my first book club I was so nervous. I’d been to one in my town before and it wasn’t great I didn’t gel with most of the people there and as far as I know it didn’t continue. On the day in question I was in the middle of a horrific flare causing me to get the time wrong and turn up half an hour late.

You are literally there to talk about books

Chances are if you’re looking at going to a book club then you like books. I don’t know about you but if you’re a total bookworm like me that alone is a reason to join. No one rolls their eyes when you get super excited about a new release or despair at a lackluster ending.

It’s a great way to meet new friends

I’ve met some of my closest friends in book club. I was already a regular at my local book shop but since joining the club I’ve made best friends that I now don’t know what I’d do without. I also ended up getting a job over Christmas and I only knew about it because of my visits!

You can explore reads you might not have picked up before

Book clubs are meant to show you new books you might not have read. We always vote on a range of books in a kind of knock out round system, the book with the most votes wins.

Thanks to the club, and my friend Maddie, I found a new fantasy series I adore The Mirror Visitor, starting with A Winter’s Promise which is an incredible book that you all need to read!

It gets you out of the house

I’m an introvert, I love nothing more than being left to drink lots of tea and stay in on my sofa in the evenings. Basically, I needed a reason to go out and see other people that didn’t rely on alcohol or spending a lot of money. This was the perfect excuse to get out while not being too out of my comfort zone.

It’s Fun

I have so much fun every month, we have snacks, I get a large cup of tea talk about the book with people. We don’t always stick to the chosen read, it’s perfectly normal for us to go off on a tangent here or there and sometimes I even go to the pub afterwards. It’s a nice feeling.

Are you part of a book club? I’d love to hear what you’ve been reading and if you were able to carry on virtually! Let me know!

My 7 Top Tips To Read More

My 7 Top Tips To Read More

I have had a lot of messages recently about how much I read and how on earth do I read so much. Partially, it’s because I’ve been posting my reading updates on Instagram (don’t forget to follow me here) with everything I finish and so far, so good for 2020!

So I thought why not pop it in a blog and share with you guys how I get through an average of 100 books per year.

Read short books to get you in the swing of things

There is no point in starting War and Peace if you’re not a regular reader of you’ve been in a bit of a slump. Shorter books are a great way to get into a story and feel a sense of accomplishment that you’ve finished a book!

Read what you enjoy!

Love romance books? Go for it. Think YA is incredible? I agree? Or maybe you want to read about farms in the 1800s? You do you. There can be a lot of snobbery over what people read but, honestly, it’s no one else’s business if you enjoy it.

Join a Book Club

I took a chance, joined a book club and met some of my closest friends as well as being introduced to some of my new favourite books like A Winter’s Promise.

Book clubs are great to encourage you and introduce you to books that you might not have tried otherwise. Also the good ones also have sweet treats, just saying.

Absorb books in the best way for you

Hardback, paperback, ebook, audiobook – they’re all ways of enjoying a book. Some people enjoy listening and get more from it.

Take a book with you wherever you go

This is where the Kindle app is great because you’ve always got a book on you as long as you have your phone and you can get books for as little as 99p!

Or just put a read in your bag so if you get delayed/ are waiting for something/ have a quiet lunch break and are in the mood to read.

Set time aside to read

Whenever works for you but if you really want to read make time for it. For me, it’s normally in the evenings so I can get away from screens and chill out.

I also used to use any time I was on a train or bus because the only other thing I could do was sit on my phone. I’d probably read a lot more if I didn’t have my phone…

Goal orientated? Set that goal!

If goals work for you – set one. Even if it’s 1 book for the whole year or , if you’re completely mad like me, 100 books. I love having a goal and tracking them on Goodreads and it really motivates me to keep reading when I’m in a slump.

Easy ways to read more!

Each year I set myself a target of the number of books I’d like to read, normally it’s 100. That said since graduating last year things have changed in my life and trying to get through books has been a lot more to fit into my life, I’m obviously working 5 days a week (which really cuts into your reading time). A lot of people I speak to say they just don’t have the time to read more, so I thought I might help.

 

Always have a way to read with you 

Physcial book, Kindle, eBook, it doesn’t matter! You never know when you’ll have time to spare. You can also read on laptops, phones, iPods, tablets, you name it! Get reading!

Set time in your day to get a couple of pages in 

I like to try and read either at the beginning of my lunch break or before I go to bed at night. It doesn’t matter if you read one page or ten, giving yourself that little bit of time means you’re reading!

Audiobooks are your friend! 

I love audiobooks. I have a monthly subscription with Audible which allows me to get two audiobooks for £15. They’re great when you have a lot to do. I can listen at the gym, while driving, while cleaning. Personally, I like to listen to memoirs rather than fiction, but that’s my personal preference and there are SO MANY too!

Get a library card 

Anyone remember the tune from ‘Arthur’, our favourite Aardvark ‘Having fun isn’t hard when you have a library card!’. If you don’t have much money to spare on books, your local library is a great place to start reading without the cost!

Attend a local book club or meetup

I’ve started going to a new local book club, meaning I can talk about books and get new reads. It also gives you a reason to read, a lot of the people in my book club are trying the group so that they have the motivation to read! Sounds good to me.

Enjoy what you read! 

If you don’t have a lot of time don’t feel bad about stopping a book you’re really not enjoying! Find something you enjoy and get stuck in!

What are your tips? Let me know in the comments below!

Book Review: Suicide Notes From Beautiful Girls – Lynn Weingarten

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‘It was like being in love, but more…And now, one year later , Delia is dead. 

I love a good suspense novel, after glancing at this I had to get it, because it just sounded too damn good. June and Delia were best friends, closer than sisters, until they grew apart, one night Delia dies but June knows that things don’t quite add up. They say it was suicide, but June is convinced it’s murder and will go to any lengths to find out the truth about her best friend.

This is the best kind of thriller, once you think you know what’s going to happen a twist comes out of nowhere and you’re floored and devouring the book to find out what happened. I give you fair warning Suicide Notes From Beautiful Girls will keep you up all hours of the night not only reading it but also trying to work out what really happened, was it suicide? Did someone have a grudge against her to the point of murder? It helps that Delia is a character who is very unpredictable and June knows it.

I thought the character of June was well written, there is really hurt, pain and confusion that you can feel as you read the book. I felt that she was very real to the reader, with her own feelings and problems outside her search for Delia. I found the book similar to Far From You but in a good way because both have completely different characters and endings. If you like this novel that is another one to check out later.

There are a lot of suspects in this novel, people who could have murdered her and it drove me half crazy as I came up with theories for each and every one of them, not once did I get to the truth. The fact that I never got it but the ending was so well planned really made me amazed at Weingarten’s talent as an author, I think she is definitely one to watch in YA literature and I wouldn’t be surprised if this made a great film later on. I saw that because this would make a much better film plot than Gone Girl ever did.

Of course I’m going to give this review 5 stars *****!!! This really is a brilliant book and I’m so pleased my book club chose this as the novel to read for this month, it’s brilliant. I’m now planning to read the rest of Weingarten’s novels and hope they are just as addictive and satisfying as Suicide Notes from Beautiful Girls. I hope you all enjoy and please let me know your thoughts. Have you read any other Weingarten novels? Or have you read Suicide Notes from Beautiful Girls already? As always let me know in the comments!

My First Book Club!

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Yesterday was a busy day, after spending most of the day in the office at Kingston Hill working on The Student Room for results day I was pretty exhausted by the evening. I could have easily gone home, microwaved something and curled up in bed but I’d been looking forward to my first Young Adult Book Club all month talking about Ned Vizzini’s It’s Kind of a Funny Story which is next Thursday’s review. Book Club is something I’ve never done before and after missing out last month because of Basingstoke Live so I was determined to go.

Buuuuuut, determination is hard when you’re anxious. As usual my anxiety reared its head as I was walking to town with thoughts swimming around my brain. What if everyone knows each other? What if I’m the oldest? What if no one shares the same opinion as me?! Part of me wanted to run (ha, I wish I mean struggle to quick walk) away and forget about it.

As usual the staff at my local Waterstone’s were lovely and engaging. I got there half an hour early and had a lot of conversations with different members of staff and got compliments about my jumper again ( It’s says – Me? Wrong? Never. on it and it went down a storm at the office). Then I bumped into a girl who bonded with me over books we loved and that’s just the beginning.

At this point let me introduce Becky who is scarily similar to me and feels like she’s been a friend for years! I think she’ll feature on my blog again! We hit it off straight away, she’s heard of my band (!!) and ended up talking way after the evening had finished. The only worry that came of my anxieties was that I was the oldest non staff member of the group, but that didn’t matter. The girls were great and I’m already thinking of some people from uni I want to bring down.

It was a big step for me tonight to do this when I didn’t know anyone. It’s the kind of situation that makes me incredibly anxious and panicky but I did. It’s nice to do something that only I’m really interested in and meet other people who like it too. I’m definitely going to be going for the rest of the year which is super exciting and something to look forward to every month. So I would say it was a success! I also treated myself because I was proud with two next YA books (of course), a new fox keyring, some pens, an about me type book, a to-do notebook, a new academic diary, Harry Potter Pop and some brightly coloured pens! 🙂

Are there any other YA readers out there who can give me some good recommendations?! Throw them my way!