My MiddleEarthAThon TBR!

The wonderful Lizzie from Lizzieiself is hosting the MiddleEarthAThon from the 26th August until the 2nd September to celebrate the new Lord of the Rings TV show releasing! She asked me to cohost and I’ve been placed as the team leader for the Dwarves 😊⚒

Our others hosts are: The Bookworms Feast for Team Hobbit (who also has a book blog), Imena Ginac for Team Elf, Stuff Celine Does for Team Men, and LadetteM for Team Witch King!

Come and check out the MiddleEarthAThon twitter and instagram too for updates and mini sprints!

I published a recommendations video for the Dwarf prompts a while ago, as well as a video and a blog post for my overall August tbr. But I’ve also done a standalone video for my MiddleEarthAThon tbr so I thought I should do a blog post too!

First up is the prompt: “That still only counts as one” – reading an anthology or a collection of short stories. For this one I’m going with The Complete Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle… I know it’s huge but it’s literally the only one I have! This is over 1100 pages and I’m going to be trying to read it, and two 500+ page books, in just a week. Why do I do this to myself?

The second prompt is: “Thranduil” – a book with a shiny cover. Demon Road by Derek Landy is my choice for this one. A YA urban fantasy based in the US by the same author who wrote the Skulduggery Pleasant series. I’ve heard some… not so positive reviews of this one? But I want to try it for myself regardless and I’m hoping that this’ll be a quick read like the Skulduggery books are for me.

The final dwarfish prompt is: “Durin’s sons” – the book that has been on your tbr the longest. For me this is pretty hard to judge, so I just went with one I know is pretty old (since 2016) and that’s All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr, a historical fiction based in WWII. I’ve not been having much luck with historical fictions lately, but it’s been a while since I’ve read one based during WWII (which used to be my favourite period) so I’m holding out hope.

Now whilst that’s all the prompts, the Dwarves do also get one special power and that is to swap out any book for a shorter one if needed. And oh boy do I intend to use this if I need it!

For the anthology prompt I have two different options. One is to just read one of the bindups that lives within the Sherlock book itself. The full book of The Case Book of Sherlock Holmes. This is a lot more manageable so I’m going to start the readalong with this and then see if I can manage more. Another possibility was given to me by the wonderful Hannah from Ladette M, who reminded me my Waypoint Books order would be coming through soon with my copy of Armageddon Outta Here by Derek Landy the revised edition. This is a collection of Skulduggery short stories and would be a much easier read 😂

For the shiny book prompt I’ve given myself the backup book of The Cat Who Saved Books by Sosuke Natsukawa which is a translated Japanese cat book. I whip through these super quick (I actually force myself to spread them over a few days) and so if Demon Road doesn’t work out I can squeeze this in at the end.

And for the oldest on my tbr prompt, I realised that I actually have a book I know has been on my tbr longer! And that’s The Witchfinder’s Sister by Beth Underdown. This is a historical fiction which only clocks 300 pages rather than the 600 for All The Light and could save my guts by the end of the month 😅

I will say I’m slightly worried that I might end up trying to read all of these books… in a week… so someone needs to stop me from doing that please and thank you.

Are you taking part in the MiddleEarthAThon? If you’ve not signed up yet I’ve linked the Spreadsheet, Google Form to submit the books you’ve read for your team, and the form to tell us the team you’ve picked so you can sign up and have some fun with us! Having read/watched Lord of the Rings not required (I only just read the first LotR book last month and I’ve still not watched them!)

If you are taking part tell me which team you’re joining and make sure to follow all of the other lovely hosts!!

August 2021 TBR

So this is probably a mistake…. I struggled with my reading in July. Partly because of burnout and partly cause I was just super busy (I was away for over a week and did NO reading, oops?). And yet here I am with a MASSIVE tbr for August. I’m totally expecting to crash and burn with this, but at least I’ll have a lot of options to mood read from!

You might’ve seen my post about August readathons earlier in July (click here if you wanna refresh your memory) so you should already be prepped for the HUGE tbr I’m about to drop on you!

First things first we have Kingdom of the Wicked by Derek Landy for the Dead Famous Readalong which is a reread for me. I’ve been going through the Skulduggery books again this year and really enjoying the process!

For Kayla from Booksandlala’s Buzzwordathon the prompt is “time of day” for August. One of the books on my tbr already has “clock” in the title, and honestly I think I’m just running with that.

Then we have the Mary Shelley-A-Thon hosted by Caitlyn from Mad Cheshire Rabbit. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte is my main book for this readathon which covers a lot of prompts, which are “an author born in 1818/1831”, “a book I keep saying I’ll get to”, “and set in the late 1700s/early 1800s”, but I’d also like to get around to Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare which is for the prompt “set in a country the author isn’t from”.

Next up is the Royal Readathon: Sidekicks which is what I’ve based the foundation of my tbr on. Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho is for a book featuring a dragon and a book with death, This Savage Song by V.E. Schwab for a book about music, Clockwork Angel again! This time for a cheesy book. The Throne of Fire by Rick Riordan for a middle grade book, a book on mythology, and a colourful cover. Guards! Guards! by Terry Pratchet is my pick for a humourous book, a book with greed, and one under 300 pages.

And last but never least is All the World’s a Page which is Olivia Savannah’s readathon in August! There are SO MANY prompts for this readathon that Olivia says herself that you don’t need to aim for them all! I’m basically just fitting in the other books into these prompts so I won’t go through these again.

And then FOR SOME REASON I also want to read my chapters of War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy, as well as Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid, No Place to Hide by Glenn Greenwald, and also Smiler’s Fair by Rebecca Levene. For some reason I’ve added these onto an already huge tbr so other than War and Peace these will be riiiiiight at the bottom of the list! And last, but by no means least. I started and didn’t finish Prodigy by Marie Lu last month. So now I need to read that as well…. god damn it. I’ve not even pulled my tbr jar pick yet!!!

What do you want to read this month? Is your tbr as stupidly big as mine? Let me know!!

The Mary Shelley-a-Thon!

The amazing and wonderful Caitlyn from Mad Cheshire Rabbit is hosting the Mary Shelley-a-thon once again in 2021! Her favourite book is Frankenstein but she also loves the rest of Shelley’s works and wants to promote more people to read them! But you can read modern books to fit most of the prompts!

I definitely recommend checking out Caitlyn’s video below, but I’ll post the prompts below that and the books I’m thinking of reading!

Here are the prompts!!!

1. Read a book by Mary Shelley

2. Read a poetry collection or a book by a poet

3. Read a book that was published in 1818/1831 or a book by an author who was born in either of those years (+/- 5 years)

4. Read a book you keep saying you will get to but still haven’t

5. Read a book set in the late 1700s or the early 1800s

6. Read a book in a country the author was not from/a book that features travel

7. Read a horror/gothic

Now the only one I’m going to struggle with is to read a book by Mary Shelley, cause the only one I own is Frankenstein and I read that earlier in 2021! So I may just have to reread it…. hmmm

I don’t have any books by poets on my shelves as well, but I would love to listen to more by Elizabeth Acevedo after loving The Poet X in 2020!

For a book that was published within those years, Caitlyn gifted me Wuthering Heights cause she loves that book and wants me to read it, and that would work so I’m probably going to pick that up! And I think it’ll work for prompt 5 too!

I’ll pick any tbr vet for prompt 4, that’s probably the easiest for me to get to!

The last two prompts are a little more difficult for me, I think I have a good option for travel but I want to check more of my books. And I don’t think I have any horror or gothic books! Look I’ve been trying not to add to my tbr! I’ll have to ask Caitlyn for some recommendations!

Are you going to join in with the Mary Shelley-a-thon? Have you read any of her books? Let me know!!

Freshwater by Akwake Emezi, a review


I’ve heard a lot about Akwaeke Emezi recently, and I had thought that my first read from them was going to be Pet (which sounds absolutely amazing and I NEED TO READ IT!) but instead it was Freshwater. This story follows Ada who has multiple entities from the Mothergod Ala inside of her. She begins her life in southern Nigeria after being prayed into existence, but her life is no easy ride.


I picked this up specifically for the fuck slut shaming prompt for the Fuckathon, and although it covers many different topics this will be the one I talk about first. There is sex positivity in this book, with our main character Ada having sex freely with both men and women and feeling no shame, she is also slut shamed by those around her but she sticks to her guns and doesn’t let them shame her. Also prevalent within this book is the rape of Ada. It is referred back to throughout the book as a major plot point.

The next two topics very much combine and this is spirituality and multiple personalities. This is approached by having separate beings who each narrate the story in their own chapters and are said to be linked to Jesus. I really enjoyed how they switched between “everyone” and we get to see from all of their viewpoints. The first have been sent by Ala, the others crystallise after traumatic events and this changes how they act and interact with Ada’s life. I can’t say much more about this without spoiling the plot but the presence of these different viewpoints is utilised incredibly well throughout the story.

The one “diverse” topic within this book that I have personal experience with is depression, and so this is the one where I can comment on the representation. I think the metaphors used are incredibly well done and unique, Emezi deep dives into the mind and I love their approach to this topic and also how they depicted the various people around Ada and their reactions to her depression.

The topic of racism is lightly touched upon here, with our Nigerian main character living in the US the main racist point I saw was the encouragement of relaxing and straightening her hair rather than leaving it natural. In the latter parts of the story we also delve deeper into Ada’s non-binary preferences, which have developed slowly as the plot moves through.

I of course cannot speak to the representation of most of the aspects of this book, so I recommend finding own voices reviewers to see their opinions. I’ll be doing that myself. However, Akwaeke’s website says that this is an autobiographical novel which suggests that she is writing this as an own voices author and therefore I see this as her view of her own experiences. I really enjoyed this book. It was heart wrenching, incredibly interesting and so so absorbing. I am now so excited to read Pet as I loved the writing style.

Have you read anything from Akwaeke Emezei? Have you read Freshwater? If you have tell me what you thought of them down below! I totally need to chat about this!


A new favourite!


Dark Matter, by Blake Crouch, was the group book for the Thrillerathon. I almost didn’t read it, I almost read The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle instead. But I did a Twitter poll and the vote went to Dark Matter, so I picked it up, and damn I’m so glad that I did!

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In Dark Matter we follow a man who’s life has been stripped away from him. His wife, his child, apparently none of this ever happened and he’s actually a prize winning scientist who is a recluse and only talks to his coworkers.

I adore books with sci-fi twists and this one just really hit the right spot for me. I was drawn in to a point of obsession and every mark was hit just right. Every plot twist was exactly perfect for me, close enough that I was still enjoying the story but enough of a twist to really shock me. At the end of the book I was speechless for a time. Literally speechless. That doesn’t happen a lot for me!

I want to spill everything about this book, I was to rave about it, but I don’t want to spoil the experience for you. So. If this genre is your sorta thing, a thriller with a sci-fi twist, then I 100% recommend picking it up. Hopefully you’ll enjoy it and hopefully you’ll love it too, like me!!

What the HELL was this book?

Watching Edie by Camilla Way had been on my tbr for a long time, around 4 years probably. I had picked it up in a Poundland when they still sold new books (any Brits, they now sell secondhand books, it can be a good spot to check if you’re on the skint side like moi) and for some reason just never picked it up. It was my choice in the “shortest book” slot for the Thrillerathon in February and seeing as I was late to start this readathon I decided to pick this one up.

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It started out promising, I personally enjoyed Way’s writing style and the storyline was interesting. However, as the book carried on it devolved and became a lot less interesting. It also felt manipulative towards the reader, trying to make you feel for the events and the characters when the writing hadn’t been good enough and the plot hadn’t been written well enough to justify these emotions.

I struggled with my rating for this book, and I still do. I’m between a one and two star. I did enjoy certain bits and as I said, I enjoyed the writing style, which is why I bumped it up to a two star. It is, however, a badly done concept and I don’t care for it at all. I’m glad it’s off of my tbr now and I’ll likely donate it to charity at some point. Hopefully someone else can enjoy it, but I doubt it.


My favourite Poirot in a while!


Book #26 in the Poirot series, The Hollow by Agatha Christie, was one of my picks for the Thrillerathon at the end of February. I was expecting to like it, but I wasn’t expecting anything more as I’ve not loved a lot of the Poirot books I’ve read lately. However, I loved it!


It took a little while to get into the story, with us following the various characters involved in the murder for almost 200 pages before Poirot gets involved. While at first I found this annoying I came to enjoy learning about them in their own environment and was still enjoying myself.

These extra pages for the characters definitely allowed not only for a little bit of character development, but also to allow me to get to know them better and care more about the outcomes at the end of the book. It was definitely a great decision by Christie and I’m glad that the book with the prettiest cover was also the one that I enjoyed the most!

Definitely a Poirot I recommend picking up, as you don’t need to read them in order, and one that I really did enjoy. Speeding through in just one day as always.

Anne of Green Gables, a review

I am so glad that I pressed myself into picking up this book. I have never intended on reading it and actually bought it to donate to my old school (I’ve given them other books instead, don’t worry!), however, as it sat there on my shelf I felt drawn to it somehow. I decided on a whim that I was going to read it… and then it sat on my shelves for another few months! Okay don’t judge me with that, we all do it (I hope), but then the BookTubeAThon came around and I decided that it was going on my tbr, and I was going to read it. And read it I did.

I was enjoying myself with the beginning, I liked our introduction to Anne and watching her wait anxiously to see whether she would be accepted into this family. However, once it was concluded that Anne would stay and once she had settled into her new life I started to be a little bored with the story. Although there were little events here and there as Anne got into mischief, there wasn’t exactly much happening in the novel and those little bits I found more annoying than anything else. Maybe I’m becoming a grumpy adult?

Once Anne turned 13 however, I re-fell in love with the story, absorbing it so quickly until the very end. The section of the book was paced well, with interesting plot points and I was fully engrossed in Anne’s world and the events going on around her. This is the section that made me fall in love with this book, this is the section that made me want to give the book 5/5*! I had to be reasonable and remember that I didn’t enjoy the middle of the book, hence why my rating of the novel is actually 4/5* but I am now incredibly invested in Anne’s life and I will definitely be continuing with the story at some point!

I definitely recommend picking this children’s classic up, and I also recommend pushing through to the end if it isn’t appealing to you at the beginning. You might find a new favourite is in your hands.