Saturday, 9 January 2016

2015: Final Book Report

2015: Final Book Report
So.... 2015 is over just a quickly as it started. I hope everyone had a good new year and all is well...
2015 was a good year for me personally. I secured a permanent job within a department I really enjoy working, I finish a project that I started 9 years ago which makes the future brighter and when it came to reading books I read the most I have in a calendar year, which also included the largest book I have read in I am Pilgrim by Terry Hayes at 914 pages long. 
People always ask me have you seen this film? Have you seen that film? My answer most of the time is no, sorry. Don't get me wrong I do love watching films but for me I would rather sit and read a good book. Whilst people are pre-ordering movies I am pre-ordering books. The older I get the more I feel that books are taking over all the spare time I have. Do you know what? I love that. Whilst films are very visual and tell stories, books tell stories but when it comes to the visual side of things I am the director. Yes people & places are described in a book but you could ask a 100 people to draw what they visualise and I would say that each one would be different. This is the fun part of reading for me and when you are in the reading zone nothing else matters in life as you are taken away to whatever world you are currently in.
Social media, especially Twitter is brilliant for book lovers. In 2015 I have followed so many people involved with books, these range from publishers, authors, editors and to all the readers and bloggers out there. There is not a week that goes by that I don't think "oooo that books sound great I must get that". This year, without Twitter I would not have been so excited about The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins, Disclaimer by Renee Knight or Star Wars: Aftermath by Chuck Wendig which all had a huge social media buzz about them, it was hard not to buy and read. If you love books and are not on Twitter or Google Plus I would recommend this for you. If you are on Twitter you can follow me at @CBailey31, if you like of course.
My favourite books of 2015:
These are my top 5 books I have read this year all scoring 5 out of 5. They are not in any order as I could spend a month arguing between them.
Playing Mrs. Kingston by Tony Lee Moral

Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

The Good Luck of Right Now by Matthew Quick

Unlucky 13 by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
I don't normally set targets in life as I think they are a waste of time but at the start of 2015 I did set myself a little target on how many books I would read. Although I love books so much, I am not the fastest of readers at all, I know some people who have read up to a hundred books in 2015 which is crazy but cool. I set my target at 18 which is a book and a half a month and at the time thought I could push myself to do it. How did I do??? Well unfortunately I fell just short and finished the year on 14 1/2 books. The half is so important haha. I was on schedule at the end of June but  came up just short. I was gutted I did not hit this target but I am more determined to do it this year. I feel my reading has got faster so my target for 2016 is 24 books which is 2 a month. Fingers crossed.
What have I got planned for 2016? Well, books and lots of them. As stated above my target is 24 books to be read this year. Some of the books I can't wait to read are Trigger Mortis by Anthony Horowitz which is the new James Bond book, the next Cormoran Strike novel by Robert Galbraith which normally comes out around September, Love May Fail by Matthew Quick and the next book which is getting such a buzz across social media. The Widow by Fiona Barton. This a debut psychological thriller and is published on 14 January in the UK and then in February in the US. I have this on pre-order and it will be delivered this week. Keep an eye out for my review soon.
Guest Blogger:
If you like to read books and fancy doing a guest book review on my blog then please give us a shout on the contact page. You may be a blogger already, whether it be food, fashion & beauty, travel or like me, books, so why not advertise your own blog by writing a review on a book you have just read. If you have never done anything like this before but would like to give it a go then please give me a shout as well. It is great fun.
I hope everyone's 2015 was enjoyable and your 2016 is going to be even better.
Speak soon


Friday, 1 January 2016

Book Review: Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith

Career of Evil
Robert Galbraith
Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith is the third instalment of the Cormoran Strike novels. When I first heard that this book was to be published I was straight online to pre-order. Having previously read Galbraith's previous two novels The Cuckoo's Calling and The Silkworm there was no question, that I was not going to order this one. Both myself and my wife love these books so it was a case of who was going to read it first. When it was delivered we were both half way through books, so it was a who finishes their book first wins. I lost of course as my wife is so much faster than me. Thankfully when I did get my chance to read it, it did not take long.... For those that don't know Robert Galbraith is a pseudonym for J.K Rowling author of the Harry Potter books.
When a Mysterious parcel is delivered to Robin Ellacott, she is horrified to discover that is contains a women's severed leg. Her boss, private detective Cormoran Strike, is not that surprised but very alarmed. There are four people from Strike's past who he thinks could be responsible, especially one of them who is capable of unspeakable brutality. With the police focusing on one suspect Strike is increasingly sure they are not the perpetrator, so he & Robin decide to take matters into their own hand and delve into the dark & twisted worlds of the other three suspects. But as more horrendous acts occur, time is running out for both Strike & Robin.....
Where do I start? well I am best to describe these books as a good old fashioned murder mystery. A modern day Agatha Christie' Hurcule Poirot you could say. Private detective Cormoran Strike, a former Special forces detective and his trusted side kick Robin Ellacott go together so well. It was great to catch up with what has been going on with them since their last big case, which I'm afraid would only really make sense if you had read the two previously books. This however is not a bad thing as they are both brilliant so it will be worth it. Straight from the off you are deep into this story. I remember when my wife read it she had only been reading 5 minutes and she was like, woooah, after only the first chapter. Books that start like this are always the best for me as you know it is going to be great and whilst you have you mind in the book nothing else in the world matters. 
The story in itself is brilliant and so clever, this books takes so many twists & turns that I, at one point, was convinced every character in the book had done it and in some instances I kept going back to the same character over and over. Even when you think you have found out, you still have not really and have to keep going till at least the last page of the book. Did I get it right?? nah of course not. Out witted again....
Apart from Strike & Robin there are some old faces from previous books that are back and it is great to see them as well. Along with the regulars you had a whole new cast of evil suspects which were written brilliant by Galbraith. The way they are described you could picture them so well. I regularly visit London which is where these books are set, so for me this makes it more fun when the story is in places where I have been too. This book also took a trip down a very dark path, which for me is why I think these books are so good. Not because I'm evil, because I'm not, far from it haha but it creates an atmosphere that keeps you on the edge of your seat and makes the story so realistic and reminds you that this world is a horrible place sometimes.
Was there anything bad about the book? Yes it finished, and I have to wait till October 2016 for the next one. Like I said before you are best to read the previous two books so you would probably not enjoy it as a stand alone book.
I scored this book a 5 out of 5. It was amazing and an extremely enjoyable page turner. This is up there as one of the best books I have read in 2015. I fully recommend this book. I know of 5 people who have read this as well and they all say how great it is.
I would love to know what other people think. Do you agree with me or not? Let me know..
Speak soon