Reading round-up: My October shelf

A question I’ve been asking myself this month: if you don’t have heaps of bubbles, a glass of prosecco and a good book—is there even any point having a bath? (Answer: nope.) As this October chill has crept in, and London has turned a little greyer and a little dirtier—my bubbles have become the highlight of my evenings. And these are the books I’ve been submerged in while I’m…submerged.

September, Rosamunde Pilcher

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This has been simply the perfect bath book. It’s about wealthy Scottish families in a small village, whose greatest worries revolve around whose house they’ll drink their whisky in, so it’s wonderfully gentle and soothing for an evening soak. It’s about cold nights and bracing walks, so it makes my warm bath even more appealing. And thrown in amongst the cosiness and luxury is an element of suspense… so I don’t fall asleep in the bath.

The October List, Jeffery Deaver

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One of my favourite films of all time is Memento, the Christopher Nolan thriller told entirely in reverse. The October List follows this same structure: each chapter takes place earlier than the one before. The result is a twisty and surprising novel, in which the ending is revealed to you right from the start, but it isn’t until you read what came before that you realise how shocking that ending is. This gimmick is the saving grace for what’s not a brilliantly written novel (the dialogue can be a little stilted much of the time); for me, it’s been worth it each time a character’s context showed them to be someone totally unexpected.

Little Women, Louisa May Alcott

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This month, a Twitter confessional took place: we admitted that there are still a handful of us out there who have never read Little Women. Shocker, I know. So we started an unofficial book club. So far, I’ve only finished Book 1—but Beth is already really sick, and I’m not liking those odds. To be honest, I’ve had a mixed reaction to this book so far. I’ve cried a lot (anything involving Beth and her piano, or Beth and Mr Laurence, or Marmee being heaven on Earth), and I’ve laughed a lot (usually at Jo, who’s fantastic, and only partly because I view her entirely as Winona Ryder)—but I’ve also cringed a lot. I know it’s just a product of its own time, but I wasn’t expecting it to be quite so preachy. The great moving, moral moments tend to be very religious—and even though Jo is supposed to be this feminist icon, she’s still praised for the moments when she manages to reign in her “boyishness”. However, I’m loving the characters (except Meg, who—let’s be honest—is the goddamn worst), and I’m loving their antics, so I’m excited to read on!

Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined, Stephenie Meyer

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Yeah, I fell for this. I thought Stephenie Meyer was doing something really cool to explore the portrayal of gender roles in literature—but of course she was just stealing my money (a whole 12 quid of it) for a lazy and sexist rewriting of what was a pretty rubbish book to begin with. My review here.

How to Start a Revolution, Lucy-Anne Holmes

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I read How to Start a Revolution as part of the feminist book club at Cattitude & Co, so you’ll have to head here to read my review, but in short: it’s a quick and inspiring read that will make you want to dress up as Rosie the Riveter and get into some feminist fights on the internet.


What books have you been loving this month? Let me know in the comments below or on Twitter! And don’t go anywhere before you follow me on Bloglovin’, or sign up for email notifications by clicking the ‘FOLLOW’ button below.