3 Must Own Feminist Books | Christmas Gift Guide 2017

Show your love by giving the gift of feminism.  Here are 3 feminist titles for the special women and men in your life (no kidding, gender equality benefits everyone.)


Muslim Girl: A Coming of Age by Amani Al-Khatahtbeh

muslim-girl-9781501159503_hr“A harrowing and candid memoir about coming of age as a Muslim American in the wake of 9/11, during the never-ending war on terror, and through the Trump era of casual racism.  This is the extraordinary account of Amani’s journey through adolescence as a Muslim girl, from the Islamophobia she’s faced on a daily basis, to the website she launched that became a cultural phenomenon, to the nation’s political climate in the 2016 election cycle with Donald Trump as the Republican nominee.”

Perfect For…

  • Girls aged 15+.  This is a coming of age story that affirms and empowers girls regardless of religion or race.
  • Anyone who consumes media.  We take it for granted that media is biased, but we may not realise who bias impacts.  Written by an industry insider, Muslim Girl is an eyeopener with a very personal core.
  • Busy people.  This is a small book with a big impact.  Its message will forever change the way you see the world.

Where to Buy Online

Booktopia (hardback) | Book Depository (hardback) | Dymocks (hardback) Continue reading

September 2017 Reading Recap

I blinked and September was over!  What are your highlights and lowlights from September?  You’ll notice I read a bunch of short stories this month — I just got on a roll!  Do you recommend any short story collections?  


The Rosie Project (Don Tillman #1) by Graeme Simsion

9781922079770PUBLISHER: Penguin
April 11, 2013
Adult Fiction, Rom Com
Add on Goodreads

Blurb in one sentence: A genetics professor with undiagnosed Asperger Syndrome embarks on the “Wife Project”, only to fall inconveniently in love with a woman with whom he is completely incompatible.

What I Liked:

  • Rosie is not a manic pixie dream girl.  Presenting a self-assured attitude to the world, she is autonomous and intelligently rationalises her decisions and behaviour.
  • I saw on Goodreads that lots of reviewers criticised The Rosie Project for representing Asperger Syndrome in a feel-good, comedic context.  I don’t believe that The Rosie Project romanticised Asperger Syndrome or treated it flippantly.  In fact, I think this story illuminated its unique challenges and positive aspects, with an appropiate mixture of seriousness and comedy.

What I Disliked:

  • So many people want to argue with me about this book, and I honestly can’t be bothered!
  • The plot is pretty flimsy, but, considering the tropes of the rom-com genre, this didn’t get in the way of me enjoying the journey.

If you like The Rosie Project, you may enjoy:

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell ★★★★☆ My Review Add on Goodreads
Sofia Khan is Not Obliged by Ayisha Malik ★★★☆☆ My ReviewAdd on Goodreads Continue reading

My 3 Favourite Mothers in Literature | Mother’s Day 2016

BeFunky Design

It’s time to celebrate the wonderful women who raised us.  Take a break from brainstorming ways to show your mum some love, and remember your favourite fictional mothers.  Here are my 3 favourite mothers from childhood books:

Miss Honey | Matilda

Miss Honey is Matilda’s school teacher and eventual adoptive mother.  When Matilda’s biological family punishes her for being unique, Miss Honey embraces Matilda’s individuality.  She does everything in her power to nurture Matilda’s special talents and make her feel loved.  Her overflowing joy spreads positivity to her students.


Molly Weasley | Harry Potter series

Molly Weasley is fiercely protective.  She confronts danger head-on to keep her family safe.  Despite being a tough cookie, Mrs Weasley can also be tender.  Her knitted Christmas sweaters and home cooked meals keep her loved ones warm and cosy all year round.  When Harry visits, she makes him feel like part of the family.


Marilla Cuthbert | Anne of Green Gables

Marilla Cuthbert may not have signed up for motherhood, but she steps up to the plate when Anne Shirley comes to live at Green Gables.  At first, Marilla is stone cold and strict.  But as Anne warms her heart, she is surprised to experience love like she has never known before.  Sharing in Anne’s misadventures becomes the most rewarding part of her life.


I hope this list gave you the warm and fuzzies.  Who are your favourite mothers in literature?  Have a wonderful Mother’s Day!

Photo credits: http://www.tumblr.com / http://www.wordpress.com / http://www.anneofgreengables.com

My Romantic Reading List for Valentines Day 2016

Love is in the air this weekend!  To celebrate Valentines Day I’m revisiting my favourite romantic reads.  Some are old, some are new, some aren’t your average love story.  But one thing they all have in common is a talent for making me swoon.  What are you favourites?  Share below in the comments!

6867Atonement by Ian McEwan

Cecelia and Robbie are torn apart when Robbie is wrongly accused of rape and sent to the WWII frontline.  Through painstaking detail McEwan crafts a rich world around their star-crossed romance, weaving viewpoints and time periods together.  Atonement is heartbreaking but beautiful.

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott FitzgeraldUnknown

How can you talk about romance without mentioning this masterpiece?  Jay and Daisy’s romance is beautiful, but best of all is the writing.  Set against an intoxicating backdrop of 1920s opulence, The Great Gatsby paints a portrait of humanity more vibrant than life itself.  I am in love with its unforgettable language.

818z5OvvrWL._SL1500_Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert

This is a story about finding (and learning to love) yourself.  Eat, Pray, Love isn’t your typical romance, but it IS deeply romantic.  Liz’s self-reflection and personal epiphanies touch upon every aspect of her world.  This book has enormous heart and soul.  If you’re alone this Valentines Day, Liz will inspire you to spend it loving yourself.

Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë9781471141638_hr

Another obvious addition.  Re-reading this book countless times made Cathy and Heathcliffe’s damned romance immortal to me.  I would agonise breathlessly over the claustrophobic house, the desolate moors, and the characters’ self-destructive wills.  Wuthering Heights is overpowering.

194755Esio Trot by Roald Dahl

My final pick is a children’s book.  Mr Hoppy is desperately in love with his neighbour Mrs Silver, the owner of a disappointingly small tortoise called Alfie.  Mr Hoppy decides to make her happy by secretly swapping Alfie for a slightly larger tortoise every day.  Esio Trot is simple and completely enchanting.

I can think of many more that deserve to be on this list (fodder for next year’s Valentines Day post wink wink).  I hope you enjoy these romantic reads and spend your Valentines doing something special by yourself or with loved ones xo  

Photo credits: http://www.beautifulbookcovers.com / http://www.goodreads.com / http://www.books.simonandschuster.com.au / http://www.amazon.com

Best Books I Read in 2015

My favourite part of New Years is looking back on what I read the previous year. I flogged my Goodreads Reading Challenge by reading 44 books in total! You can follow this link to see my complete reading list (and feel free to ‘friend’ me so we can share recommendations).

I want to share with you all the books that wowed me in 2015. These are reads that I struggled to put down, that haunted my sleep, that refused to stop popping into my thoughts ever since. 

6334Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro

This dystopian story is about young clones bred for organ harvest. Although this sounds like the set up for a thriller, it is in fact a tender reflection on the characters’ emotional development from child to adult. Ishiguro writes beautifully and broodingly. Always subtle, Never Let Me Go has a lingering impact on your perspective of humanity.

T38447he Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

Like Never Let Me Go, this is a social critique delivered through dystopia. In the future, the remaining handful of fertile women are allocated as birthing machines to the wealthiest men. Defiance has fatal consequences. The Handmaid’s Tale holds a mirror to society with its a prediction of the future. (Word of warning: if you have even the smallest seed of feminism in you, reading this book will make your ovaries explode.)

fight-club-book-coverFight Club by Chuck Palahniuk

This book is all grit and gore. Through deceptively layered storytelling, we watch as our narrator is trapped in the mayhem (pun intended) of a rising anarchist group. This psychological thriller is as wildly entertaining and it is terrifying.

American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis12800_12088bc3a1d7062e_b

Ask yourself if you’re ready to face the consequences of reading this book. American Psycho is genius, surely, but you can’t unread it. Patrick Bates is rich, handsome, and well-connected. He’s also a psychopathic killer. The style allows you to slip into his claustrophobic stream of consciousness, de-sensationalising his actions until torture seems as ordinary as neckties and business cards.

10956The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides

Now grown men, old neighbours reunite to remember the Lisbon sisters they worshipped in high school and try to understand the girls’ suicides. The changing of the seasons ties together this insidious story. While Eugenides’ tender narrative style is gorgeous, I feel that it’s the pervasion of colour and sound and smell that leaves the richest impression. When I remember reading The Virgin Suicides, I remember the deep orange of Autumn leaves and hear the beating of fish fly wings.

My Hundred Lovers by Susan Johnson13634670

I understood the importance of this book when I reread it for an analytical essay. On my first read I was stunned by its poetic style – by Johnson’s skill at making love to language. On my second read, it was deep and raw and intensely personal. My Hundred Lovers explores the first fifty years of a woman’s life through one hundred things and people and places she has loved – a concept reminiscent of Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s film Amelie – all artfully layered within this unforgettable book.

51lyq4laGpL._SX318_BO1,204,203,200_Vernon God Little by DBC Pierre

Media’s twisted truth and the scary reality of mob psychology is the basis of this confronting book. Vernon Little is charged with accessory for murder after his best friend massacres his classmates in a high school shooting. Told from his uniquely irreverent first person perspective, Vernon God Little is equal parts hilarious and horrible.

So those are the best books I read in 2015. These standouts were insanely obvious because of how they changed my view of the world. I’d love to hear your reading highlights from last year. Write to me in the comments and if you’re on Goodreads I’d love to see your Reading Challenges.

Photo credit: http://www.goodreads.com


Classics Haul + Summer Reading List 2015

I went a bit overboard when I visited Dymocks in the city recently.  Luckily I had my loyalty card to take the edge off this blow to my bank account.  Check out the classics I added to my collection!  I reckon these make pretty amazing summer holiday reads.  

15798121Breakfast at Tiffany’s

Truman Capote’s novella was first published in 1958, but I’m going to hazard a guess that you associate the title with Audrey Hepburn’s iconic portrayal of Holly Golightly in the 1961 film.  I’ve never seen the movie so I thought this short book would make compelling holiday reading.  Its longstanding status as a masterpiece ensures me I’ll enjoy it.


Lo and behold this almighty classic (pun intended).  Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov has sat on my to-read list for years and I’ve only just picked it up.  This is a must-own for lovers of classics.  You can expect a review in the new year.

1573226521-01-lzzzzzzzThe Beach 

This 1996 bestseller by Alex Garland is a modern classic.  Like Breakfast at Tiffany’sThe Beach is well-remembered for its film adaptation.  I think this gripping and dark adventure story would make a great holiday read.  Maybe while sunbaking on the beach…?

Catch 22catch-22_cover

War stories are never high on my to-read list, but this 1961 classic by Joseph Heller demands attention.  Although Goodreads reviews are unanimous about this book’s genius, I’ve read many that admit it’s a challenging read.  Some day I will have to steel myself to take on this giant.

Rye_catcherThe Catcher in the Rye

Most of us are well acquainted with  J.D. Salinger’s 1951 classic from being force fed it in high school.  I’ve tried to read it once before but lost interest.  I think it was my sense of obligation that put me off.  However, a friend recently pointed out that I would enjoy this as a Vernon God Little enthusiast.  So here I am giving it another shot!

I hope my summer holiday reading list inspires you.  This is my last post of 2015, so have a merry Christmas and a happy New Year!