Recently Read #4

Posted in Books

Hello!  It’s time for another Recently Read.   As writing these posts has given me so much motivation to read, I’ve only gone and completed my GoodReads challenge for the year! Woo woo!  Take that, GoodReads!   Here are my thoughts on the last three books that I read.

Fangirl - Recently Read - Famous in Japan

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Plot: Fangirl follows two twins, Cath and Wren (Catherine – geddit?).  Cath is quiet and Wren is loud (what a surprise…. not).  They go to college, where loud twin is loud, and quiet twin is quiet.  Quiet twin writes a lot of fanfiction.

I’m going to come out and say it – this book was beyond disappointing.  All of the characters were shallow and grossly unlikable.  I am not sure what the fanfiction aspect had to do with anything.  The fanfiction Cath writes about seemed to be based on a story similar to Harry Potter, which is fair enough if that doesn’t exist in the Fangirl world, but then it goes on to mention Harry Potter anyway?  It’s not as if the fanfiction was echoing Cath’s life, or having something to do with the overall story.

I kept waiting, and waiting, for a big event/scandal/fall out to help the characters’ development, or at least make them become a little bit more likable, but nothing happened.   There was so much potential here.  Cath could have met the author of the series her fanfiction was based on; she could either have been motivated by her to write her own stories or be disappointed by her idol.    But no.  Quiet twin stayed quiet.  Loud twin stayed loud.   Quiet twin still wrote fanfiction.   Both twins became even more annoying.  The end.   I am not joking.   I don’t have anything nice to say about this book.  Avoid.

Recommend? No, no, definitely not.

If you didn’t get that reference… have a word with yourself.

Hausfra - Recently Read - Famous in Japan

Hausfra by Jill Alexander Essbaum

Plot: Hausfra is about a bored housewife called Anna.  She is mentally ill, with certain conditions such as depression and insomnia.   She has lived in Switzerland for years, yet cannot speak the language that well.  She does not have a job, or even her own bank account.  She is scared of her husband and she has no friends.  She begins to have lots of sexual affairs, but of course things end badly.

Hausfra was recommended to me by my bae Chelsea.  She had read this book and wanted someone to talk about it with, so off I went to my local library to find a copy.   I’m such a good friend.   My first impressions from the blurb were that this book was going to be rather difficult to get into, but I found it quite easy to get stuck in after a few pages.   The book alternates between the present day and Anna’s past conversations with her therapist.  I particularly found those parts to be the most interesting, as they were almost poetic in a way.

Other than that, I thought that the book focused a little too much on the “affairs” part, instead of the decline of Anna’s mental health.    I think that would have made me a little more sympathetic towards Anna as a reader.  I can understand why Anna was afraid to tell her husband her fears and worries, but it was a little hard to believe she could have multiple affairs so easily.

It’s definitely a book that gave me a few things to think about, but it’s not one I would read again.

Recommend?  I would recommend this book to fans of the thriller genre.

Weight of Water - Recently Read - Famous in Japan

The Weight of Water by Sarah Crossan

Plot: Young Polish girl moves to England with her Mum to find her Dad who abandoned them.

This was an impulse choice at the library.  I have heard of Sarah Crossan in the past, so when I saw a book with her name on I decided to borrow it on her name alone.  It’s fair to say that The Weight of Water is something else.  It is written entirely in verse, so the story is told through poems.   It’s certainly a different, and unique, way of story telling.  Even though it isn’t like a conventionally written novel,  I was still pulled into Kasienka’s story.  As a whole I thought the book was very easy to read, and I read it in just under 2 hours, possibly even less.

Recommend? Yes.

What have you read recently?

Dannie x

June 17, 2015
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  • Reply Rosie

    I think this might be the first less than golden review I’ve seen on Fangirl; good on you for saying what you thought about it. I’ve not read it yet, but I plan to soon and I was expecting a lot, so I think I’ll go into it with a little less hype now, which is always a good thing as far as I’m concerned.

    I’m part way through reading Only Ever Yours (which you mentioned a couple of weeks ago). It’s really good, but it’s a hard book to read, because of the content. I find that I can marathon it like I do other books, but I am enjoying it, but kind of not? You’ve read it, so I’m sure you know what I mean.

    June 17, 2015 at 1:16 pm
    • Reply Danniella Josephine

      I’ll be interested to see what yo make of it!
      I read your review on Only Ever Yours! It is a hard book, but it’s a change from what I usually read! x

      July 5, 2015 at 4:41 pm
  • Reply Kel

    I know I should be off-put by Fangirl but I’m weirdly now more curious to read it…

    June 18, 2015 at 1:08 pm
    • Reply Danniella Josephine

      Don’t do it!

      July 5, 2015 at 4:40 pm
  • Reply Megan Carthy

    I am so glad someone else feels the same way about Fangirl as I do. I think the thing I hated most was when the louder twin was shown the error of her ways and went back to be besties with Cath. Because going to uni, having a bit of an adventure and finding your own friends is apparently bad thing – what a terrible thing to promote! I have to say though, another Rainbow Rowell’s books, Eleanor and Park, was really really good so don’t be put off by trying other stuff by her :)
    Megan x
    London Callings

    June 18, 2015 at 2:42 pm
    • Reply Danniella Josephine

      I know right? And the ending???? The fanfiction??? The weird Harry Potter story???? I didn’t get it.
      I have heard Eleanor and Park is good so I will read that when I can get a copy of it :) x

      July 5, 2015 at 4:39 pm
  • Reply Shell Senseless

    Everyone keeps telling me I need to read a Rainbow Rowell book but I have a feeling I would have the same opinion as you! Hausfra sounds interesting- I am always drawn to books that deal with mental health, will have to look out for it.

    June 29, 2015 at 7:11 pm
    • Reply Danniella Josephine

      Hahaha, I really did not enjoy that book!
      It was, it gave me a lot to think about! You might like it :) x

      July 5, 2015 at 4:34 pm

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