Looking Back At March, And Forward To April

WOW! 2015 is storming on isn’t it? I can’t believe it’s April already. SLOW DOWN! 
The good thing though is the nights are now light and the spring flowers are out! The weather may not have cottoned on just yet, but the promise of summer IS there. It always makes me feel so much better. And of course, the Easter Bummy will be making a visit this weekend…CHOCOLATE! 
March was a very, very busy month for me. In mid February I took on an extra job doing one nightshift a week in a residential home for Elderly people. This was great, as at the moment I only work three days during the week at College. However, they had a bit of a staff shortage and I ended up doing more shifts…and almost killing myself. I need to learn how to say no! 
So I didn’t get as much reading done as I hoped. But I did read some amazing books… 
Still to review: 
His Other Life by Beth Thomas
A Room Full Of Chocolate by Jane Elson 
March Book Of The Month was difficult, but I’m going with…


The Girl In The Red Coat by Kate Hamer

Coming up in April… 

I’ve been thinking about how to mark 5 years since I started blogging, and came up with an idea for 5 posts, over 5 weeks, with top 5 lists of bloggy & bookish stuff and memories from the last 5 years. There may be a giveaway or two tolook out for too. Starts Saturday 4th April
New Books this month… 

Finally, here’s the new books that have made their way into my home over that last month. I’m really looking forward to getting to these over April!

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Books Recently Added To My TBR List

Top Ten Tuesdays is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish 

This weeks Top Ten Tuesday topic is books recently added to my TBR list. These are the books that have most recently landed on that ever growing, almost toppling over tower of books to read.  

(Clicking on the images will take you to Goodreads for a description)

 








   

There’s a theme running there…and a LOT of black! I’m loving psychological thrillers with no sign of getting tired yet, but I still like mixing it up with some contemporary fiction and YA. 

These are books I’ve recently become the owner of, either through the Amazon Vine Program, Publishers, Netgalley or bought. 


Book Review: My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga

Aysel and Roman are practically strangers, but they’ve been drawn into an unthinkable partnership. In a month’s time, they plan to commit suicide – together. 

Aysel knows why she wants to die: being the daughter of a murderer doesn’t equal normal, well-adjusted teenager. But she can’t figure out why handsome, popular Roman wants to end it all….and why he’s even more determined than she is. 

With the deadline getting closer, something starts to grow between Aysel and Roman – a feeling she never thought she would experience. It seems there might be something to live for, after all – but is Aysel in so deep she can’t turn back? 

Published February 2015 by Hodder and Stoughton  

Depression and mental health in general is something we don’t take seriously enough in our teenagers. It’s easy to brush it off as teen moodiness and sulkiness. In ‘My Heart and Other Black Holes’ Jasmine Warga takes the topic of depression and suicidal thoughts and manages to convey the crippling sadness of main protagonist Aysel very well. As someone who did have a difficult adolescense, I related to those feelings of despair and the metaphor of ‘a black slug’ for Aysel’s depression really struck a chord.

But this books also investigates a darker, more modern topic relevant to teenagers today. The internet, specifically Suicide websites. I’ll be honest, as a parent this scared me. Aysel meets Roman on a site for people looking for suicide partners, and as they set ‘the date’ the slowly begin to get to know each other. I could feel the pressure Aysel started to feel under from Roman and it chilled me. I didn’t like him all that much and didn’t relate to him the way I did Aysel.

 However, the developement of the relationship between the two was sweet and tender. There’s a part of me that sighs at the ‘love solves all problems’ message that could so easily have dominated this story. Thankfully, Aysel’s new found hope in life isn’t confined to her growing fondness for Roman and I hope this isn’t lost on a younger audience.

There is a lot of good in this book. It’s written very, very well and I think anyone who has suffered depression, teens and adults alike, will relate to Aysel and her feelings. The first half of the book was excellent, but then I felt the second half was rushed and it lost me a little. The parent in me says I’d recommend this book to other parents of teenagers happily, as an excellent insight into depression in teenagers. As for it’s target market, I think it would be ideal for mature young adults. I would look out for more from the author in the future, who really does have a beautiful way with words.

Published February 2015 by Hodder (UK)

My copy was an advance reader from the Amazon Vine program