July was a fairly even mix of good and bad books for me. I would love to hear what you’re loving, hating, and looking forward to in the blogosphere and publishing world!
Yikes, where has the year gone? Looking back on the first half of 2017, I’m excited to see that every book I read made a difference to my taste and opinions, and that I never have to stop growing and learning even when my interests change over time. Here’s my recap of the first half of 2017.
More Happy Than Not (2015) and History Is All You Left Me (2017) by gay YA author, Adam Silvera, are a perfect pair. Featuring realistic gay protagonists, they confront themes crucial to older YA readers including identity, sexuality, love, and loss. Silvera’s representation of mental illness is unflinchingly honest and raw. I may not be able to bid you “happy reading”, but I hope you will find Silvera’s writing as powerful as I did.
This year, I have enjoyed reading more representations of mental illness in adult and YA books. I love when these narratives contribute to breaking down stigmas, and validating real experiences. As a children’s book lover, I was curious to research what picture books are available for young readers struggling to understand a family member’s depression.
In 2016, I broke out of my reading rut and found some new favourites. Are any of these your favourites? I’d love to hear about the highlights of your year in the comments below!
Last year I tried to read outside of my comfort zone more. In the process, I feel like I grew as a reader and found new passions. The aim of my 2017 reading resolutions are to continue growing as a person with greater love and understanding.
What makes our favourite female characters so special? This roundup celebrates book girls who break the mould. Some refuse to be restricted by gender roles. Others teach us there’s more to being strong than acting tough. All make great role models and deserve to be read again and again.
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!
Lemony Snicket has a wickedly clever imagination. A Series of Unfortunate Events is scattered with these trippy tangents. This one is from Book 13, The End. Hopefully after reading, you’ll no longer be in the dark about why he’s one of my all-time favourite people.
The phrase “in the dark,” as I’m sure you know, can refer not only to one’s shadowy surroundings, but also to the shadowy secrets of which one might be unaware. Every day, the sun goes down over all these secrets, and so everyone is in the dark in one way or another. If you are sunbathing in a park, for instance, but you do not know that a locked cabinet is buried fifty feet beneath your blanket, then you are in the dark even though you are not actually in the dark, whereas if you are on a midnight hike, knowing full well that several ballerinas are following close behind you, then you are not in the dark even if you are in fact in the dark. Of course, it is quite possible to be in the dark in the dark, as well as to be not in the dark not in the dark, but there are so many secrets in the world that it is likely that you are always in the dark about one thing or another, whether you are in the dark in the dark or in the dark not in the dark, although the sun can go down so quickly that you may be in the dark about being in the dark in the dark, only to look around and find yourself no longer in the dark in the dark about being in the dark in the dark, but in the dark in the dark nonetheless, not only because of the dark, but because of the ballerinas in the dark, who are not in the dark about the dark, but also not in the dark about the locked cabinet, and you may be in the dark about the ballerinas digging up the locked cabinet in the dark, even though you are no longer in the dark about being in the dark, and so you are in fact in the dark about being in the dark, even though you are not in the dark about being in the dark, and so you fall into the hole that the ballerinas have dug, which is dark, in the dark, and in the park – page 191
Deep down, I always knew that postgrad study didn’t support my dreams. So at the last minute, I withdrew from my course and decided to be a professional writer. Woo!
Before long, my first exciting opportunity came knocking. Our Daily Rant Mag welcomed me aboard as a regular contributor and I published my first opinion article with them last week. I wrote about Kim Kardashian’s nude selfie and International Women’s Day. You can read my article and follow Our Daily Rant Mag on Facebook for updates in your feed.
It’s weird writing in a different style for a magazine. I want to make the most of the opportunity to grow as a writer. Now that I don’t have uni to motivate me to write, I’m getting my friends to hold me accountable for the work I produce each week. My bestie has a great sense of humour, so I’m testing out my jokes on her. Most are super lame, but I’m learning.
I’ve got some super-secret awesome stuff coming up, so watch this space! I want to share my experience with you, and support your writing in any way I can. Let me know where I can read your work, follow you, and encourage you to reach your writing goals. I want to get behind anyone trying to do their own thang in a busy online world. I can’t wait to see what this year will bring!