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Book Displays – Movies From Books

Book Displays

I’ve been volunteering at my local charity shop, St Barnabas, in the book department, for a couple of years. I love working there and always look forward to my shift. I like finding new ways to do book displays and today I did a ‘movies from books’ display. I’m hoping to get time to do a proper poster for it over the weekend so it stands out a bit more 🙂

Book Displays






If you have any ideas for displays, I’d love to hear them 🙂 I’ve been searching Pinterest for ideas. There are some great ones but I still need lots more so I can change it every week!

Amy Snow – Weekly Book Review Week 1

Amy Snow

I’ve started another reading challenge on Goodreads and the first book I read was Amy Snow by Tracy Rees.
I’ve challenged myself to read 45 books this year but after seeing how Cheryl, from Madhouse Family Reviews, did with her challenge, I decided to go and change my goal to 52 and try reading a book a week.

I don’t know if I’ll make it but I’m going to give it a good go!

Amy Snow by Tracy Rees

So onto my review.

I work on the book section in the charity shop 2 mornings a week. That’s where I came across this book. The cover stood out of the hundreds of books I deal with a week so I read the blurb.

Abandoned on a bank of snow as a baby, Amy is taken in at nearby Hatville Court. But the masters and servants of the grand estate prove cold and unwelcoming. Amy’s only friend and ally is the sparkling young heiress Aurelia Vennaway. So when Aurelia tragically dies young, Amy is devastated. But Aurelia leaves Amy one last gift. A bundle of letters with a coded key. A treasure hunt that only Amy can follow. A life-changing discovery awaits . . . if only she can unlock the secret.

I liked the sound of it so I bought it and gave it the husband to put away so one of the kids could give it to me for Christmas.

Two copies

I must have really liked the sound of this book because months later I came across it again and bought it, again. Because it had a different cover, I didn’t realise I’d already had it but to be fair I do read a lot of blurbs each week so I’m sure I can be forgiven for not realising!

I figured it was a sign that I needed to read this book first and I wasn’t disappointed. It took less than a week finish because I couldn’t put it down. It was a nice, easy read and made a change from all the Christmas fiction I’d been reading.

Amy and Aurelia are likeable characters. I found myself feeling the same as Amy as she went about her quest; I wanted to protect Aurelia and I hated her parents. The way Aurelia’s mother treated Amy was awful and I thought the way the author tried to justify her behaviour at the end was disappointing.

It was also a little disappointing that Amy figured out the secret half way through. I was looking forward to that feeling you get when you can’t wait to get to the end of the book to find out what happened but you also don’t want the book to finish. That feeling fizzled when I realised Amy was probably right with her suspicions.

I’ll be looking out for her second novel, Florence Grace when I’m working in the charity shop 🙂

Goodreads reading challenge 2017

Completed My Goodreads Reading Challenge 2016

Goodreads Reading Challenge

I’ve really enjoyed all the extra reading I’ve done this year, thanks to my Goodreads reading challenge. I first pledged to read a book a month but, by May I’d read 12 books! I changed my pledge from 12 to 40 and I’ve ended the year having read a total of 42 books.

I’m really pleased to have completed my 2016 challenge. I’m going to challenge myself to read 45 books in 2017.

Wish me luck!

In 2016 I read the following books:

Goodreads reading challenge


Goodreads reading challenge

Goodreads reading challenge

Goodreads reading challenge

Goodreads reading challenge

Here are some stats about my challenge that I found interesting

Goodreads reading challenge

Goodreads reading challenge

Goodreads reading challenge

If you’re challenging yourself on Goodreads next year, I’d love to be friends on there 🙂

Books for Christmas #StoriesForLife

Books for Christmas

A big blue sparkly package arrived in the post for me. I knew what it was and I got excited knowing the girls were going to love the contents! Random House sent me three children’s books.

I get excited buying books for them because I know they love books as much as I do. One of the books in the parcel was one I’d been planning to buy Kaycee for Christmas. I’m glad I’d not bought it yet!

Random house books for children

As soon I learnt to read, I became an avid reader. I used to stay up way past my bedtime. I’d hide my book under the covers and pretend to be asleep if mum popped her head around the door!

It’s hard for me to choose a favourite book from my childhood. I loved so many but one I read more than once was The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe. I’ve lost count of the amount of times I’ve read it but I still love it today. I felt transported to Narnia whenever I read it.

Favourite part of the book

Something cold and soft was falling on her. A moment later she found that she was
standing in the middle of a wood at night-time with snow under her feet and snowflakes
falling through the air.

Lucy felt a little frightened, but she felt very inquisitive and excited as well. She looked
back over her shoulder and there, between the dark tree trunks; she could still see the
open doorway of the wardrobe and even catch a glimpse of the empty room from which
she had set out.(She had, of course, left the door open, for she knew that it is a very silly
thing to shut oneself into a wardrobe.)

It seemed to be still daylight there. “I can always get back if anything goes wrong,” thought Lucy. She began to walk forward, crunch- crunch over the snow and through the wood towards the other light. In about ten minutes she reached it and found it was a lamp-post.

As she stood looking at it, wondering why there was a lamp-post in the middle of a wood and wondering what to do next, she heard a pitter patter of feet coming towards her. And soon after that a very strange person stepped out from among the trees into the light of the lamp-post.

He was only a little taller than Lucy herself and he carried over his head an umbrella,
white with snow. From the waist upwards he was like a man, but his legs were shaped
like a goat’s (the hair on them was glossy black) and instead of feet he had goat’s hoofs.


I read it to Aiden, Kaycee and Ella a few years ago. They looked forward to it every night and I was so happy sharing it with them.


Goodreads 2016 Book Challenge

Goodreads 2016 Reading challenge

Goodreads reading challenge 2016

I started a book reading challenge on Goodreads at the start of the year and I’m 3 books ahead of schedule 🙂 I recently read The Girl On The Train. It was an enjoyable read. I’m looking forward to seeing to the movie adaptation which is coming later in the year, I believe.

I’ve enjoyed reading the Agatha Raisin series and I started another one this morning after I’d finished Lie Still by Julia Heaberlin.

My favourite book so far has to be The Cursed Child. I pre-ordered it and got very excited when it arrived! It’s the script version of the stage play and because of this, it was a quick read. I was a bit sad when I finished it.
It has made me want to see it being performed on the stage. I bet it’s brilliant.

Goodreads 2016 reading challenge

Goodreads 2016 reading challenge

Goodreads 2016 reading challenge

Favourite books

One of the books that I struggled with, at first, was The October List b Jeffrey Deaver. He’s one of my favourite authors so I had to bring The October List home when it got donated to the charity shop where I’m a volunteer. It’s a bit different in that it’s written backwards. You start with the last chapter and work your way to the start of the story.

It was a bit confusing until all of a sudden everything falls into place. I must say, I was ready to give up half way through but I’m so glad I stuck with it.

My favourite books have to be the Hannibal Lecter series by Thomas Harris. I read them all then watched each movie. I’d added the DVDs to my Amazon wishlist and my lovely father in law bought them for me for my birthday.

I still have over a 100 books on my ‘to read’ list and I’m always spoiled for choice when it comes to choosing the next book! It doesn’t help that I work in the book department at the charity shop. I get to have first pick when the books are donated (I pay the same price as the regular customers, just in case that sounded a little unfair!). I spend far too much there every week!


Books in May #ayearinbooks

Goodreads reading challenge May 2016
books in May

I’ve not read as much this month as I did last month because we’ve been busy in the garden. I changed my reading challenge from 12 books for the year to 40.

It says I’m 1 book behind so I’d best get reading more next month!

I started a new book by A. S. Byatt on Sunday called The Children’s Book but I really couldn’t get into it so I’m reading Agatha Raisin, the walkers of Wembley.
I should have it finished before the end of the month which will be my 4th book in May.

I read The Poison Artist by Jonathan Moore last week. It started off really slow and boring but I’d read some reviews and knew to expect it. I carried on reading because the same reviews said it got better by the middle and brilliant at the end.

I didn’t find it brilliant, I found it really disappointing. It felt like I’d wasted time reading this book when I could have been enjoying something else and I blame Stephen King; for years he’s been my favourite author and when I saw the quote from him on the front of the book saying it was terrifying, I believed him!

The other books I’ve read are more Agatha Raisin ones. I can’t wait for the tv series that’s starting on the 7th June.

I’m not sure what to start next, I’m on the lookout for something really scary so if you’ve got any ideas, I’d appreciate your recommendations 🙂

#TheYearInBooks – My progress


I set myself a challenge at the start of the year; I love reading but hardly read any books last year because I got into the habit of only reading a couple of pages each night before I fell asleep.

It took me months to finish one book and with a ‘to read’ pile that was getting bigger every week, thanks to working on the book section at the charity shop, I knew I had to make more of an effort to find the time to read.

Nighttime reading is how I get myself to sleep but I now bring my book downstairs with me in the mornings and read while I’m eating breakfast.
I keep it by me so that whenever I get some free time, it’s there and I can settle down and read a chapter or three.

Goodreads run a challenge every year so this year I challenged myself to read one book a month. I’m already on book number 9! I should have set my goal to 40, not 12!

Here’s what I’ve read so far:

Reconstructing Amelia by Kimberly McCreight

Date Started – January 2nd, 2016
Date Finished – January 29th

Lady Of Hay by Barbara Erskine

Date Started – January 29th
Date Finished – February 21st

Call The Midwife by Jennifer Worth

Date Started – February 22nd
Date Finished – March 4th

The Mistletoe Bride & Other Stories by Kate Mosse

Date Started – March 4th
Date Finished – March 12th

13 Reasons Why by Jay Asher

Date Started – March 12th
Date Finished – March 18th

The Ghosts Of Sleath by James Herbert

Date Started – March 18th
Date Finished – March 28th

Welcome To Rosie Hopkins Sweetshop Of Dreams by Jenny Colgan

Date Started – March 28th
Date Finished – April 7th

Little Face by Sophie Hannah

Date Started – April 8th
Date Finished – April 15th

Awakenings by S.J.Bolton

Date Started – April 15th

I’ve nearly finished Awakenings, in fact, it will be definitely be finished this morning, which will make it the fastest book I’ve read so far this year 🙂

Awakening by S. J. Bolton


Next on the list is Agatha Raisin and the quiche of death by M.C. Beaton. The first 20 books of the series were donated to the charity shop this week so I’ve bought the first one and put the others to one side. I was going to buy them all but figured it would be best to read the first one and see if I like it before spending £20 and ending up with a series I won’t carry on reading!

Edit April 25th – I finished Agatha Raisin and I love it so I’ll be buying the other 19 books 🙂

Goodreads reading challenge 2016

#TheYearInBooks – Call the midwife

Call The Midwife

Call the midwife

I should have done this post at the start of March but I totally forgot! I finished my February book, Lady of Hay early so started my March book early and finished that a couple of days ago.
I’ve now started a new book and aim to finish it before the end of March as well!
More about that at the end; for now, onto Call the Midwife….

I was looking forward to reading the box set of 3 books by Jennifer Worth. It was a gift for Christmas as I’d seen season 1 on TV and loved it.

I didn’t enjoy the book as much and didn’t want to read the other 2 books in the series after finishing the first book, Call the Midwife.

It was a well written and the TV series seems to have followed it faithfully but I think that may have been the problem; I already knew what was going to happen with each person/family and it bored me a little.

I decided not to read the next book. It’s about the workhouses and I thought it might be too upsetting.

Instead, I started a book by Kate Mosse called The Mistletoe Bride. It’s a collection of short stories and so far, I’m enjoying it 🙂

You can see my progress on Good Reads if you’re at all interested in following me!

Read 100 Books #2 – Mr Mercedes #101in1001


Mr Mercedes by Stephen King

I’ve been a big Stephen King fan ever since first watching IT on video when I was about 15. That week I went to the library and borrowed the book. I couldn’t put it down and since then I’ve read nearly all of his books.

I own quite a lot but in recent years I haven’t been as obsessed with buying every book as soon as I could so there are a few missing from my collection at the moment.

I did hint to to my S.W.H. (super wonderful husband) that I really wanted Mr Mercedes when we saw it in Asda a short while before my birthday and he remembered!

I’ve just finished reading it and have to say I really enjoyed it. It’s not the usual horror/supernatural story you expect from Stephen King and it was a welcome change.

Here’s the blurb:

A cat-and-mouse suspense thriller featuring a retired homicide detective who’s haunted by the few cases he left open, and by one in particular – the pre-dawn slaughter of eight people among hundreds gathered in line for the opening of a jobs fair when the economy was guttering out. Without warning, a lone driver ploughed through the crowd in a stolen Mercedes. The plot is kicked into gear when Bill Hodges receives a letter in the mail, from a man claiming to be the perpetrator. He taunts Hodges with the notion that he will strike again.

Hodges wakes up from his depressed and vacant retirement, hell-bent on preventing that from happening. 

Brady Hartsfield lives with his alcoholic mother in the house where he was born. And he’s preparing to kill again. 

Only Hodges, with a couple of misfit friends, can apprehend the killer in this high-stakes race against time. Because Brady’s next mission, if it succeeds, will kill or maim hundreds, even thousands.

I read yesterday that Mr King is going to be writing more books about retired Detective Hodges and I can’t wait 🙂


Book suggestions

As part of my new #101in1001 project, I’ve challenged myself to read 100 books in 1001 days.
I don’t read as much as I used to because I’m busier now, but I do miss reading.
I used to stay awake all night if a book got me hooked! As a teenager, the Virginia Andrews books were my favourite and I binge read them every chance I got!

book suggestions

Book Suggestions

Another of my challenges is to read 5 books, each one suggested by a different person so I’d appreciate any suggestions! Feel free to leave them in the comments.


I like a wide range of genres and I’m happy to try books I wouldn’t normally choose 🙂

For more book posts, click here

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