REVIEW: Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh

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“But these young people have such an intelligent, knowledgeable surface, and then the crust suddenly breaks and you look down into depths of confusion you didn’t know existed.”

Brideshead Revisited is the story of young Oxford student Charles Ryder and his growing infatuation with the Flyte family, residents of the impressive Brideshead estate. Charles first comes into contact with the Flyte’s through the charismatic second son Sebastian who defines his University years and arguably the rest of his life.

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Books I Started but Never Finished

DSC_1079(This isn’t so much a reading list as a non-read list)

As a self-confessed book-lover, I always feels a little bit ashamed when I put a book down before I’ve finished it. And it may feel like defeat, like maybe you’ve missed the point, but it’s important to remember that some books just aren’t for you and no matter how much you try you just can’t push past the first few chapters. It’s okay. If we all liked the same things then conversations would never turn into passionate debates. Life would be pretty dull. So, here’s a handful of books (that I can remember) that I never managed to finish:

  1. The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger
  2. The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne
  3. The Golden Notebook by Doris Lessing

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BOOKISH FINDS: Austen Re-imagined

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Sense & Sensibility by Joanna Trollope

I almost made it out of Oxfam with my pennies intact, but decided to have a quick browse of the classics section, and maybe tempt myself by looking at the lovely E.M. Forster books if they were still there, only to have the bright blue cover of Joanna Trollop’s Sense & Sensibility catch my eye. I sighed, picked up the book, and headed straight for the counter before anyone else could get their hands on it.

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REVIEW- Young Skins by Colin Barrett

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“So much of friendship is merely that: the saying nothing in place of something.”

Colin Barrett, Young Skins (2013)

Colin Barrett’s understanding of human interaction knows when to make itself known. The writer himself certainly knows how to pack a punch. Young Skins is his debut short story collection, consisting of seven separate stories set in the fictional Irish town Glanbeigh. It’s a place where the same families have lived (and failed to leave) for generations. A sense of static, of stagnation transcends the collection. These are individuals who have rarely travelled outside their own county, whose minds never wander further than the bustling hub of Dublin but who, despite their shared struggle to untangle themselves from the confines of their lives, are each wonderfully different. I had a particularly softness for Bat in Stand Your Skin because although he is physically intimidating, he has a tenderness that the more delicately-formed lack. Hiding away from the town on his roof, drinking cans of beer he felt real, and I felt sorry for him. Continue reading “REVIEW- Young Skins by Colin Barrett”

BOOKISH BITES: Darjeeling & Assam

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If you’re going to read a good book then you need a good cuppa too!  I found myself teabag-less (a state no one should have to be in) one morning and had to dip into my sister’s box of Earl Grey. In truth, my intention was to get some English Breakfast, but these fancy Tesco teas have the cutest designs on their boxes and they are pretty tasty too!

I have to say though, although the Darjeeling has a lovely subtle flavour, Assam will always be my No.1, but both are perfect for a night curled up on the sofa!