Spring Recommends

Previously, we have given some Christmas Recommends. This is something we’d like to do more of! As part of our seasonal recommends, we bring you the best books to read during the season of new beginnings!

the iron king1. ‘The Iron King’ by Julie Kagawa
Faery tales are absolutely perfect for the spring time! The scenery is perfectly decked out for the spring time, although The Iron King has a technological twist that really makes this faery world stand out. Spring is the best time for faery revelry and discovering new worlds, and Julie Kagawa’s faeries certainly won’t disappoint.

The Unbecoming2. ‘The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer’ by Michelle Hodkin 
Spring is all about NEW. Mara Dyer was neither contemporary, a fairy-tale retelling or a dystopian; the genres I find myself reading from most. So, to read a book that was so far outside my comfort zone, I couldn’t even see it on the horizon, was an excellent decision. I think the best label for this series is ‘supernatural thriller’. It’s not all sunshine and rainbows, as you’d expect from spring recommends, but if you don’t mind unnatural powers, mild gore and oodles of sexual tension, I’d totally recommend picking this book up! (You’ll be in for a wild ride!)

To All the Boys3. ‘To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before’ by Jenny Han
However, if sunshine and rainbows books are more your thing, ‘To All The Boys’ is the perfect read (and basically anything else Jenny Han has written too!) Concerned with boy trouble and romantic solutions, Lara Jean and her adorable family are sure to entertain you on a warm-weathered afternoon.

why we broke up4. ‘Why We Broke Up’ by Daniel Handler
This book is all about getting over a broken heart (well, we’ve all read the title.) Min, our protagonist, takes us through the story of her relationship with Ed, from the halcyon days of holding hards and sweet kisses, to the dark days of smashing cups and stomping on flowers. So, yes, it’s kind of depressing. BUT it’s also all about new beginnings and letting go of whatever’s holding you back – the perfect springtime outlook!

160968245. ‘A Court of Thorns and Roses’ by Sarah J Maas
What’s better than one book about fairies? Two books about fairies! If Mara Dyer was stepping out of my comfort zone, this book was very much in the centre of my ‘favourite types of books’ Venn diagram. With most of the plot taking place in the spring, and in the Spring Court of the fairy world, this book pretty much hits the recommendation on the nose.

Review: Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler

Why We why we broke upBroke Up by Daniel Handler
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Published by: Little Brown Books
Pages: 354
Format: Paperback
Rating: ★★★★
Where to Find: Goodreads | Amazon
Wait, there’s going to be a movie?! How very ‘The Spectacular Now’.

There were a lot of things about this book that really jumped out at me. I love the title, how to the point it is. You definitely know what you’re getting with this one. I love the addition of pictures. That extra element just adds originality to the story but also enhances it so much. It definitely wouldn’t be the same without the beautiful pictures.

The novel follows Min, short of Minerva, Roman goddess of knowledge, as she explains the stories behind all the items she put in a box to deliver to her ex-boyfriend, Ed. Min is “different”, but only to someone who’s life is filled with basketball games and getting drunk at house parties. Ed is “different”, but only to someone who loves old movies and sitting in coffee shops. The point is, Min and Ed were two very different people and therefore not suited to each other in the eyes of their unsupportive best friends.

But if someone tells you you’re not right for someone, you’re going to do all you can to prove you are, right? Somehow, Ed changes when he’s with Min and I really liked how he was willing to change and try new things but I hoped that the developments he made with Min, such as not using ‘gay’ to describe things (urgh, those people actually exist) would translate into his basketball life. They didn’t. Away from Min, he was still the same guy with a string of angry ex-girlfriends who were more than willing to be his shoulder to cry on.

Min’s relationship with Ed, very realistically, alienated her from her friends, which is never the right thing. She didn’t grow as Ed did, but she definitely matured. I loved her realisation at the end of the relationship that there was nothing ‘different’ about her, and that was just a label given to her by ignorant teenagers that were to involved in their own lives to be bothered about anyone that didn’t resemble their personality. (I like to think of this book as a book about doomed romance but also a social commentary.)

I particularly enjoyed the beginning of the book, when Ed was innocent and so was Min. The way their relationship blossomed was lovely, if a little bit fast paced but I guess that’s the cliche of young love. However, once you get to know Ed, you realise he is the ‘jerk bastard prick’ that Min describes him as.

I thought that the actual break up was slightly anticlimactic. I wanted their to be a huge fight, with not just Min arguing at Ed. She, at the very least, needed to punch the guy for what he did. Two punches, even. Heck, she needed to invite her friends to help her beat him up.

Overall, I’d give this book four stars. The pictures and short chapters helped to push me through the novel in a very addicted fashion, as well as helping me to guess what was going to happen next. Daniel Handler’s irregular writing leant itself well to the style of this book: a long and slightly rambling explanation of a teenage break up from the girl’s perspective. I’d be really interested to read this book also from Ed’s perspective, with different items, but only to a certain extent because he was a dick.

I think this book definitely did its job, because if that was what a break up felt like, I never want to love.