A lifestyle blog from a forty-something mum

Monday, 30 November 2015

The Christmas Reading Edit

Books, Great Christmas readsNever happy unless I have at least five books on the reading pile next to my bed - here's what I've been reading during the past couple of weeks...

The biographical one...

Spectacles - Sue Perkins

Spectacles, Sue PerkinsFeaturing an assortment of anecdotes and written with great warmth and humour, this is both honest and hilarious for a memoir. There's no topic off limits and Ms Perkins is brilliant at putting herself down and coming across as someone who would make an eccentric (but lovely) best friend. Funny, laugh out loud and one cringe-worthy moment so memorable... that you'll be grateful the book doesn't come with scratch-and-sniff. I loved the description of Pickle the Beagle as 'The only creature I've ever met that was as wilful, stubborn and downright odd as I am.' Expect Great British Bake Off gossip and revelations such as, 'Is Mary Berry real?' and 'What styling products does Paul Hollywood use on his hair?' Unassuming, honest, and if Ms Perkins ever makes an appearance at our local literary festival - I will be first in line for tickets.

The not so eagerly awaited one...

Go Set A Watchman - Harper Lee

Go Set A Watchman, Harper LeeOriginally I'd looked forward to the release of Go Set A Watchman, but after reading the reviews I decided against reading it on publication. The problem being that I loved To Kill A Mockingbird and didn't want anything to change my opinion of Atticus Finch...
Go Set A Watchman is a much less likable read than To Kill A Mockingbird. It tells the story of Jean Louise (Scout) returning to her home town of Maycomb to find that everything she believes in has changed. Atticus, now 72, is portrayed as a racist and the book is ultimately a coming of age tale about a daughter realising that she has (wrongly) looked up to her father, and rebelling against his beliefs via civil rights. The heroine of this book is undoubtedly, Jean Louise (Scout). For me, this was not a good read. That doesn't mean you shouldn't go ahead and read it for yourself though.

The rather eccentric (but brilliant) one...
Furiously Happy - Jenny Lawson

Furiously Happy, Jenny Lawson
I read Let's Pretend This Never Happened when it was released back in 2013 and concluded from the outset that Ms Lawson was eccentric, but brilliant. Having followed Jenny's angst via her blog (The Bloggess) while writing and promoting her second book, I looked forward to its publication in the UK. Furiously Happy is described as 'A funny book about horrible things.' Throughout, Jenny explores her lifelong battle with mental illness and writes about finding happiness in the unlikeliest of places. I especially loved the advice she gives to herself while recording the audiobook... 'Pretend you're good at it.' I suspect this is something we could all use. The second book does not disappoint... and for anyone who's a fan of The Bloggess, Ms Lawson is the queen of telling it like it is - expect multiple expletives and some unexpected laughs.

What's on your reading list at the moment? Do you have any recommendations you'd like to share?

Copyright ©2015 Izzie Anderton 


  1. I saw Sue Perkins at Cheltenham Literature Festival and will be borrowing her book off my parents - no point in buying it myself! I haven't read Go Set a Watchman as I've heard such mixed reviews of it. I didn't Jenny Lawson had another one out. I loved Let's Pretend This Never Happened.
    I've just read The Truth About the Harry Quebert Affair, which was brilliant, and have Girl on the Train lined up next.

  2. Always love a good book round up - I am with you on uncertainty over Harper Lee, I am not going to bother. But I am finding autobiographies more interesting as I get older - do like Sue. Number 3 has me intrigued too. I am reading The Fishermen and have asked Father Christmas for a Kindle ;)

  3. Thanks for sharing Izzie - this is an intriguing collection. I really appreciate you saying what you don't like as much as the stuff you do! X

  4. Hi Izzie, I'm a one book at a time sort of girl or I get confused! My daughter always has several books on the on at once, she recently read Go Set A Watchman by Harper Lee and said she wasn't overly impressed by it and she won't be reading it again (if she likes a book she'll read it to death).

    I do like memoirs, especially funny ones. I've still got a Jennifer Saunders on I've yet to read and nearly choked reading John Bishops and Peter Kayes ones.

    I've never heard of The Blogess or her book Furiously Happy, a funny book about horrible things is probably right up my street!


  5. Oh goodness I have a whole pile of books hogging my bedside table! From Caitlin Moran to Brene Brown. I've got a lot of catching up to do! X

  6. Ooh thank you for the recommendations! My aim for next year is to reach a point some time in the year that I can have ten minutes to myself every day to read. I'll definitely be looking out for the Sue Perkins book when that time arrives.x

  7. Gosh I've got so many books piling up on my bedside table. My current book is How to Build a Girl by Caitlin Moran. Have you read it? I certainly have a mix of books to read! Sounds like you enjoy a good mix too :)

  8. Ohh I don't usually read autobiographies but I'm quote intrigued to find out if Mary Berry is real! I love reading but can only cope with one book at a time. Love your ho dst opinions xx #pocolo

  9. That last one sounds intriguing and I always love a good biography so Sue Perkins book sounds fabulous. I have to say that To Kill a Mockingbird was my favourite book in English at school so I really don't want to ruin it! I am reading 'The Gospel According to Drew Barrymore' by Pippa Wright at the moment. As someone who went through her teens in the '80s, I am absolutely loving it! Highly recommend it. Thank you for linking to #PoCoLo x

  10. Thanks so much for this round up - I had wondered about a few of these books! Think Sue Perkins one will be up there for me. Pity about Harper.


Powered by Blogger.

© The World According to Izzie , AllRightsReserved.

Designed by ScreenWritersArena