Top 5 – Book Awards 2012

Wow! What a year! 2012 was very exciting – both for me personally and for Bundle of Books. Lots of things have changed; I left my horrible job, had a couple of interesting work experience opportunities, joint-bought a flat and got a new job (one that I actually like!). My reading habits have adapted, unfortunately meaning that I haven’t read anywhere near as much as last year. This is probably due to shorter lunch breaks and the fact that I now walk to work instead of getting a bus everyday – bad for my To Read pile, but good for my health!

I may not have read as much as I would have liked, but I’ve discovered some fantastic books! I’ve learnt about some talented début authors such as Téa Obreht, Erin Morgenstern and Eowyn Ivey. I’ve become hooked on the popular fantasy series A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin. However, 2012 was not just full of great reading; I’ve visited some wonderful bookshops, I’ve taken a sneaky peek at other people’s shelves, read a bit of poetry and watched some good (and some not so good) adaptations.

Most exciting of all, in August, I was Freshly Pressed! I was so thrilled to see all of the comments made by new (and old!) followers and can still hardly believe that my post was chosen to be on the WordPress homepage for the day – so thanks to everyone who took the time to visit my blog!

And now it’s time to take a look at some of the books that most stood out to me in 2012 (using the same categories as last year).

Book Awards 2012 Continue reading

Neverwhere – Neil Gaiman

I borrowed this book from a rat loving friend, who first picked it up because of the front cover. She had nothing but good things to say about it (probably because in the story, rats are treated like royalty!), and told me that it felt a bit like an adult version of Harry Potter.  It seems to me that readers are always trying to fill the Harry Potter shaped hole in their bookshelves. One of the things I most loved about Harry Potter was the fact that it was set in a school, so I’ve always found it a bit hard to imagine an adult version. But still, my interest was piqued!

Continue reading

Happy Blog Birthday to Me!

So, it’s been a whole year since I first started Bundle of Books and I’m so glad that I’ve stuck around! It’s been a fun year and I’ve read some great books! I’ve also enjoyed some interesting bookish discussions with other book bloggers out there and learnt a lot from comments people make on the blog.

I first started Bundle of Books in April last year with a review of Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood. I was working in a very uncreative and frustrating environment at the time and was desperate for a creative output. Bundle of Books has been great for that. I was also pleasantly surprised with all the other book lover bloggers out there! Continue reading

Fragile Things – Neil Gaiman

I’ve been hearing a lot about Neil Gaiman recently but haven’t been sure whether he writes the sort of thing that I would enjoy. This review of his book of ‘short fictions and wonders’ at Books Without Any Pictures had me wanting to know more and so I thought I would take the plunge and buy a copy. This is the first book that I have read for the Pay It Sideways Challenge.

The weird world of Neil Gaiman is not necessarily wonderful. It can be strange, creepy and amusing, but I can’t say that I found Fragile Things to be a wonderfully enjoyable read. The style is dark, whether the story is humorous and light hearted or more serious. I do like the idea of dark and magical stories, but couldn’t really settle down with this book.

There were two short stories I was particularly looking forward to reading, which both turned out to be completely different to how I had imagined them. Continue reading

Top 12 Book Recommendations (from 2011)

So I’ve swapped my usual Top 5 post for a Top 12 post. But I have a very good reason…

I was pleasantly surprised the other day to find my review of Moll Flanders by Daniel Defoe linked on Bookzilla’s website for the Pay It Sideways Challenge from What She Read. It is such a wonderful idea! It encourages people to read books they wouldn’t normally try, hopefully opening their lives up to new authors and genres. Also, it is a lovely way to show appreciation to fellow book bloggers and spread the bookish love!

I have opted to go for the interesting challenge of choosing six books I wouldn’t normally read and six that I would. All the books below have been chosen because of fabulous and intriguing reviews. Who knows, maybe you will find something different to read too! As I go along, I will link my own reviews, so you can see how I got on. Continue reading