Books · Reviews

Book Thoughts: Dress Codes for Small Towns (Courtney Stevens)

Stevens, Courtney - Dress Codes for Small Towns


Title: Dress Codes for Small Towns
Author: Courtney Stevens
Genre: Fiction / Contemporary / YA     Pages: 337
First published: 2018
Edition: Paperback

This novel was such a pleasant surprise. I picked it up on a whim and I am so glad I did. This is the kind of contemporary YA I love. Very well written and without a romance being the main plot point.

I love the relationship dynamics in this book. Essentially this book is about six friends growing up and trying to figure out how they fit together. The friendships are wonderful, the small moments of romance are tentative and feel honest. Beside that, I liked the way main character Billie’s relationship with her parents was woven into the story.

I think the main thing to take away from this novel is that the world is not always black or white, things are not always clear and lines are often blurrier than you wish them to be, especially as a teenager. There are themes of gender  and sexuality here and they are very well handled.

I enjoyed reading this novel a lot.

6 out of 7 stars

Books · Reviews

Book Thoughts: The Angel in the Glass (Alys Clare)

Clare, Alys - The Angel in the Glass


Title: Gabriel Taverner #2 – The Angel in the Glass
Author: Alys Clare
Genre: Fiction /Historical Fiction /Mystery    Pages: 240
First published: to be published on 1 October 2018 by Severn House Publishers
Edition: E-book courtesy of NetGalley and the publisher

June, 1604. When the emaciated body of a vagrant is found on the edge of the moor, it’s the verdict of physician Gabriel Taverner that the man died of natural causes – but is all as it seems? 

Having not read the first in this series, I was worried I would miss a chunk of information. To be honest, I did feel I lacked a little bit of background information, but this was perfectly enjoyable as a standalone.

Set in a small Devon village, I liked the characters and the setting in that particular time period. I do love a good historical mystery and this was true to that genre, with physicians, lords, servants, priests and the like.

Like in a previous book I read by this author the POV switches from first person when it is told from Gabriel’s perspective, to third person when we are reading from other peoples’ perspectives. This jarred a little bit in the beginning, but I did get used to it.

Although I did like the writing and the main characters, I was not the biggest fan of this particular mystery and its resolution. It felt a little bit cliche and predictable. It was a bit on the homophobic side as well, though this probably was intentional and true to the time period it was set in.

I did enjoy this well enough and I would happily read more from this author. I might look up the first in this series.

5 out of 7 stars

Books · Memes · TBR Highs and Lows

TBR Highs & Lows #1

Destiny over at Howling Libraries created this one and I loved reading hers, so I thought I would as well 🙂

The rules:

  • Link back to the original post at Howling Libraries
  • Sort your Goodreads TBR shelf by date added, ascending
  • Find 5-10 (or more, if you feel ambitious!) titles to purge from your TBR (the “lows”)
  • Post those 5 books in the list, with a brief explanation of why you removed it
  • Next, sort your Goodreads TBR shelf by date added, descending
  • List the last 5 (or more!) books you added to your TBR, with a synopsis or your brief summary of why you added it (the “highs”)


Vampire Voles (Welkin Weasels, #5)1. Vampire Voles (Garry Kilworth)

I took this one off my TBR as it is a fifth in a series. I have the first book on my shelves, but I haven’t read that one yet, so why would I have the fifth one on my TBR?


Where the Light Falls2. Where The Light Falls (Allison Pataki and Owen Pataki)

I can see why I added this to my TBR at the time, but I am not that interested in it anymore. It’s the kind of book I may pick up if I see it in a charity shop, but for now I am taking it off my TBR.


Secondborn (Secondborn #1)3. Secondborn (Amy A Bartol)

Since I have been seeing this on Kindle sale on Amazon for next to nothing and I have not felt like spending £1 on it, I do not think I am that interested in reading it anymore. There are too many fantasy books I am far more excited about.


The Long Song4. The Long Song (Andrea Levy)

The book sounds interesting, but I have too many books I would rather read at the moment so off my TBR it goes. 


Amba Scales and the Wings of Justice5. Amba Scales and the Wings of Justice (Amelia Warren)

I cannot even remember putting this book on my TBR. The synopsis does not sound familiar. It sounds ok, but nothing I would be picking up anytime soon, so away it goes.



Silvana – The Greening (Silvana # 1)1. Silvana – The Greening (Belinda Mellor)

This one sounds amazing and sounds like a quiet sort of fantasy book, which is a bit different. . I tend to like quirky books and this one sounds right up my alley.

Tangleweed and Brine


2. Tangleweed and Brine (Deirdre Sullivan)

Fairytale retellings are all the rage at the moment, but this is a bunch of short stories, which sounds wonderful. I have also seen it recommended by various BookTubers and Book Bloggers so many times, I finally put it on my TBR.

Inconvenient People: Lunacy, Liberty and the Mad-Doctors in Victorian England3. Inconvient People: Lunacy, Liberty and the Mad-Doctors in Victorian England (Sarah Wise)

I saw this non-fiction book on Simon @ SavidgeReads on YouTube. It sounds brilliant! I do love reading books like this every now and then. Or rather, I love the idea of it, because though I love non-fiction, I do not reach for it often enough!

The Fabled Coast: Legends  Traditions from Around the Shores of Britain  Ireland


4. The Fabled Coast (Sophic Kingshill & Jennifer Westwood)

Same as previous!



Rat Queens, Vol. 1: Sass & Sorcery (Rat Queens, #1)15. Rat Queens, Vol 1: Sass & Sorcery (Kurtis J Wiebe & Roc Upchurch)

I decided I need more graphic novels in my life and I keep seeing this getting lots of enthusiasm, so would love to try this one!



Books · WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday: 14 March 2018


That time of the week again! Time for WWW Wednesday, hosted by Sam at Taking on A World of Words.

So you just have to answer three questions:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you will read next?

So, this is my lot this week:

What am I currently reading?

I am reading at a snail’s pace at the moment, but I have been reading The Otters’ Tale (Simon Cooper) for a while. I am loving it, so I have no idea why I am not devouring the pages.

I also finally started Red Rising (Pierce Brown) yesterday. I am only a couple of chapters in, but I am enjoying it. I don’t read a lot of sci-fi, so it makes a nice change. I just hope I can pick up the pace a bit!

What did I recently finish reading?

I finished listening to Set The Boy Free today, which is Johnny Marr’s autobiography. That was a pretty good listen.

I also finished reading Looking For Dei (David A Willson), which was a pretty decent read as well. It is a YA fantasy that has a pretty interesting magic system. I liked it.

What do I think I will read next?

Break (Clare Littlemore) and A Different Kind of Lovely (Petra March) are pretty high on my TBR at the moment. I am trying to mood read at the moment, so it just depends what I am feeling like.

Books · WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday: 7 February 2018

WWW Wednesday time!  This is a meme hosted by Taking On A World of Words. Join if you can!

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you will read next?

So, this is my lot:

What am I currently reading?



Just started Nevernight a couple of days ago. I am about 35% in and I am really enjoying it. It is not at all what I expected, but I kind of like that. I love the writing style. It’s quite tongue in cheek and I adore the footnotes, which are very easy to look at in my Kindle version.

So far, so good!



What did I recently finish reading?

Austen, Jane - Persuasion



I finally read Persuasion! And I thought it was such a wonderful novel. I really loved the way Austen brought her characters to life in this.

Loved it!



What do I think I will read next?

I have a couple of ARCs that could do with reading for March. I may pick up one of those, but I quite fancy picking up another physical book as well. I also have not read a non-fiction book for a while… In short, I have no idea what I will be picking up next, but these are the two ARCs I will read at some point this month:


I will probably pick up The Brontë Sisters first.