The Hungry Bookling

A journey through books and the imagination

Hello!, we are nearing the end of October and I am starting on my second gingerbread latte of the day (it’s getting colder here, that is my excuse!) It is also as good a time as any for the second instalment of my fear and bravery theme. However, this time the book choices are for adults (say sorry to your kids, more children’s book reviews coming soon)

So by now, if you have read my earlier post, you know I am no stranger to being scared and although my fears have changed over the years, I still have them. They keep me company (even when I am very ready for them to leave, but I am too polite to say so) It was only last week when I was convinced that my house was haunted, only to later realise that the spring in my living room door handle had broken. (The door keeps re-opening by itself, after shutting it)

I haven’t got round to getting it fixed yet, but I am no longer panicking that my house has ghosts…well… not all of the time anyway. 

Getting over fears

October is the time of year to be scared…right? I mean let’s face it October comes around and there are always horror films on televisions and scary fiction aplenty. Even though I admit to watching the occasional horror movie I tend to avoid the majority of them, they stay in my mind long after watching them. My grandma, however, loved horror movies. She would watch them whenever she babysat (long after me and my sisters had gone to bed of course) I snuck into the living room one night while she was watching a horror film and I never did it again. I did not sleep properly for weeks and as you know from my previous post I was already scared of the dark as it was. 

I do enjoy the odd ghost story though and for some reason I feel compelled to read one, but only at this time of year. I read a lot and all different genres of books throughout the year, but ghost stories are the exception. I only want to read them in autumn/winter months. Perhaps I am setting the scene for the book. Do you feel the same or is it just me?  

So to go against my own tradition this year, I have avoided reading a ghost story. I might do something random and review a ghost story in April to make up for it. Yes, I am strange. I am also very happy with my book choices below and I would love to know what you think! 

On to the first of three book reviews:

‘Her Every Fear’ by Peter Swanson (Fiction)

This is not the first work of fiction I have read by Peter Swanson and he is fast becoming a favourite of mine. 

The plot of ‘Her Every Fear’ revolves around Kate Priddy, Kate has suffered a traumatic event in her past and decides to take a chance on an apartment swap with her cousin, Corbin, leading her to Boston. However, her fresh start soon turns sour when things in Boston begin to take a sinister turn. Just a quick reminder that this is adult fiction, definitely not for kids as it deals with some dark subject matter.  

I found Kate, as a central character, to be likeable and believable. I did not always agree with some of her decisions, but when do you always agree with the decisions of others? 

I must admit to be a fan of Peter Swanson’s writing style. His work is so easy to read. There are multiple point of views in this book, to be honest,  this is something I do not usually like – I have a tendency to lose the plot, but not  so in this writer’s case. The short chapters help with the pace and I found myself eagerly reading on. Also, the dual settings of the book made for an interesting read. 

This is a dark and greedy read for the cold and drizzly nights ahead. I read it faster than I can eat a bar of chocolate. Ok maybe not that quick…but I read it in two nights to be precise. I would have read it in one, but sleep annoyingly got in the way. I highly recommend!

‘Feel the fear and do it anyway’ by Susan Jeffers (Self-Help)

Self help books are not a favourite genre of mine. I have read a few and I often find the authors to be, in my opinion, un-relatable. However, there are a few exceptions and this book is one of them.

In her book, Susan Jeffers analyses the root of fears and shows the reader methods so they too can learn ways to not let fear hold them back in their lives. Honestly, I did feel some of the chapters were a little long for my liking and I struggled to connect with a couple of the readers stories at the end of the chapters. Having said that, I found I could connect and relate to the author and her message. There are some real gems of advice and techniques in this book which I will be incorporating into my everyday life. This book serves as a helpful reminder to not let fear hold you back in your life and to live your life fully. It helped me to focus on my actions and on my approach to life. I am clearly late to the party as this book has been published for some time, in some ways I wish I had read it sooner, but I am also glad I have read it at this moment in my life. I can see why it has sold so many copies! 

Ok, so I may have avoided the traditional ghost story but I think my next book pick makes up for it. 

‘The Strange Library’ by Haruki Murakami (Fiction)

This is a quirky story by Haruki Murakami. It concerns a young boys trip to the library which turns out to be anything but ordinary. Even though the central character is a young boy, I have placed this in the realms of adult fiction purely because of some of the actions that take place in the book and the writing style. 

Let me start by saying, if I could buy imagination Haruki Murakami’s would be at the top of my shopping list, but I guess that is what his books are for! This writer takes originality to a whole new level, you could say he is not afraid of it, and I will always admire him for that, he understands that reading a book is an experience. 

The plot and presentation of ‘The Strange Library’ with its unusual illustrations and format makes it truly unique. This is one of those stories that I think would make for perfect campfire reading. It is a short story, but it is highly memorable with the most unusual line up of characters I have seen in a long time and with an ending I did not see coming. 

Thanks for checking out my post, I hope you enjoyed it! Until next time.

Is it too soon to put up fairy lights?

5 thoughts on “Fear, books and some gingerbread latte

  1. Linda says:

    What another awesome blog Shelley. You are inspiring me to read more and more, I will be looking at some of the books you have mentioned.

    Can’t wait for your next blog, thank you.

    ps I’m all for a bit of sparkle, put them fairy lights up

  2. calmkate says:

    welcome to WP, like your take on dealing with fear and avoiding triggers 🙂

    1. Thank you so much! I really appreciate your feedback it means very much to me!!

      1. calmkate says:

        you are most welcome!

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