My 2018 Wrap Up

So this is it! The end of another year. 2018, as I have said before, has been my best reading year to date! I read 32 books this year and I can’t wait to see what 2019 has in store. I try not to plan things to extensively but check out my “Plan for 2019” blogpost which I posted about a week ago to have an idea of how I am going to attack 2019 head one!

I won’t try to overload you with loads of information but I took the stats from my Goodreads Wrap Up and have applied it here. These stats have been compiled by Goodreads.

Basic Stats

  • I read 11,486 pages over 32 books this year.
  • My average book length was 358 pages.
  • My average rating for 2018 was 4 stars exactly!

The shortest book I read in 2018 – 156 pages

The longest book I read in 2018 – 659 pages

My most popular book.

This book was read by 5,611,021 people on Goodreads.

My least popular book.

This book was read by only 297 other people on Goodreads.

The highest rated book on Goodreads that I read in 2018

This book was been rated on Goodreads an average of 4.55 stars.

Rating Breakdown

Now we are going to break it down into what books I gave a certain number of stars to. Since I started this blog at the end of the year, it will also help you see what books I have been reading. One good thing this year is I gave no books 1 star.

Books that I gave 2 stars – 2

  • The Princess Saves Herself in This One – Amanda Lovelace
  • The Magician’s Nephew – C.S. Lewis

Books that I gave 3 stars – 8

  • Murder on Christmas Eve – Edited by Cecily Gayford, written by Various Authors
  • One of Us is Lying – Karen McManus
  • The Sacrafice Box – Martin Stewart
  • Fight Club – Chuck Palahiniuck
  • The Song of Achilles – Madeline Miller
  • Everless – Sara Holland
  • The Colour of Magic – Terry Pratchett
  • The Mermaid – Christina Henry

Books that I gave 4 stars – 9

  • It Devours! – Jeffrey Cranor and Joeseph Fink
  • Mythos – Stephen Fry
  • Battle Royale – Koushun Takami
  • The Riviera Express – T.P. Fielden
  • Uprooted – Naomi Novik
  • The Witch Doesn’t Burn in This One – Amanda Lovelace
  • The Bear in the Nightingale – Katherine Arden
  • Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – J.K. Rowling
  • Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine – Gail Honeyman

Books that I gave 5 stars – 13

  • Red Queen – Christina Henry
  • Lost Boy – Christina Henry
  • Caraval – Stephanie Garber
  • Senlin Ascends – Josiah Bancroft
  • Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone – J.K. Rowling
  • Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets – J.K Rowling
  • Gemina – Amie Kaufman
  • Scythe – Neal Shusterman
  • The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle – Stuart Turton
  • Children of Blood and Bone – Tomi Adeyemi
  • Circe – Madeline Miller
  • The Murder on the Links – Agatha Christie
  • The Hobbit – J.R.R Tolkien

I added 11 of these books into my all-time favourites list proving how successful my 2018 has been.

Genre Breakdown

Lastly, for my 2018 wrap up I will break down the different genres I read this year and how many books of that genre I read. There will be overlapping as some books fit within multiple genres.

  • Contemporary – 4
  • Classics – 2
  • Fantasy – 15
  • Historical Fiction – 4
  • LGBT Fiction – 4
  • Murder Mystery – 4
  • Mythology/Folklore – 5
  • Plays/Poetry – 2 (Both poetry)
  • Re-tellings – 3
  • Romance – 6
  • Sci-Fi – 4
  • Steampunk – 1
  • Paranormal – 1

The Hobbit Review

  • Author: J.R.R Tolkien
  • Series: Prequel to The Lord of the Rings Trilogy
  • Genre: Fantasy/Classics
  • No. of Pages: 280
  • Date Read: 17.12.18 – 26.12.18
  • Rating: 5 stars (Favourite)

Wow! Ummm… where to start with this book?

I heard so much about this series but to me, it was so well-loved and highly praised, I was quite scared to even attempt to read it as I was worried I wouldn’t like it. I hadn’t read much high fantasy before this book so I wasn’t sure if it was my thing. But I thought I would just go ahead and see what happens. I mean, I got the whole set for £4 at a charity event so that gave me the push I needed to give the series a go.

Minor spoilers.

The Plot: Bilbo Baggins is a hobbit who loves the safety of his hobbit hole and doesn’t have an adventurous bone in his body. One day he is approached by a mysterious wizard and a band of burly Dwarves and is whisked away on an epic adventure to steal the mounds of riches from the evil dragon, Smaug!

Positives:

Tolkien’s world building is unmatched! I have never read a book with such intricate world building, I hear that the Lord of the Ring series is a lot more detailed so I am looking forward to that. What made Tolkien’s world building so great is that it allowed you to visualise and place yourself within the scene. You feel as if you’re there with the characters experiencing all the events alongside them. The world building was also important for the battle scenes. I tend to find battles scenes long, boring and most of the time I don’t understand what is going on half the time but with the use of the world building it gives you a clearer image of where they are and where people are positioned, making it easier to understand.

The description of the battle scenes was incredibly intricate. I was never bored reading the scenes as he always managed to keep it light and fast-paced but without losing any detail as he goes. The detail in which he described the fighting styles and the positioning of all the characters was really interesting and as I said before, worked really well with the image of the battlefield he conjured up beforehand. The battle scenes were intense and at moments I couldn’t tear my eyes from the page as I had to know what happened next.

All characters were varied and unique and I don’t think I came across any characters who were similar to each other. Characters of notability include;

Bilbo. Bilbo was by far my favourite character from this book, he grew so much and I loved seeing him change from a man who didn’t like any form of change to a quick-thinking, brave individual who stands up to leaders and dragons! I felt very connected to him as I saw parts of myself in him. (Mainly when he was complaining of being hungry and tired.)

Bombur. Bombur was by far my favourite dwarf. He was endearing and funny and he was a constant throughout the story adding moments of comedy during the dark and morbid moments. He stood out to me the most in this novel as he was so unlike the other dwarves.

Smaug. I was quite shocked by how little Smaug featured within the novel. He was only in about 4 chapters but he made his presence known. I loved his dialogue, you could quote Smaug so easily. All his interactions with Bilbo were really interesting to read and it was fun to watch them bounce off and try to outwit one another

Tolkien’s narrative voice was another element of the story that I really liked. The story is spoken in 3rd person and Tolkien acts as an omnipotent voice following Bilbo and his journey. I loved how he sometimes mentioned things to show he knew more about the story than we did and how he would give extra information about characters or events that the characters didn’t know yet. This just added to the intricacy of the whole novel.

I haven’t read a book about a quest in over two years so I was really excited to go on this epic journey and experience the ups and downs and the problems that the characters were going to face. I loved visiting all the new places and it was just so refreshing to read a story about getting from A to B and the bumps along they way as it’s the kind of story I haven’t read in so long.

The last thing I loved was the realism of the novel. Important characters die, people lose things that are incredibly important to them and after the events of this adventure nothing is ever really the same and I loved that about this book. While I love a happy ending where everyone is ok, it made the novel fell more believable and realistic that the stakes were high and not everyone made it.

Negatives:

My only problem with the book was that initially I found it quite hard to get into it. Tolkien’s writing style for me was a bit hard to get used to so I struggled with the first couple of chapters. Once I had sat down and focused more on the words in front of me I finally got immersed into the story.

This is the last book I will read in 2018 and I look forward to see what books 2019 will bring!

My Reading Plan for 2019

I have done really well this year. I will end 2018 on 32 books by the end of this week and I am incredibly proud with how much I have read. My original goal was 22 books so I was very happy to beat that goal.

I have 5 areas that I want to complete during 2019. They cover authors, genres and reading challenges. I wanted to plan a bit more for 2019, as this year I just picked up anything I liked and read it. But since then I have started but not finished a lot of series and I have signed up for reading challenges and book subscription boxes. I wanted to approach 2019 in a more organised way.

How many books do I plan to read in 2019?

For 2019, my goal is to read 25 books. I was deciding to possibly aim for 30 but this year I was very fortunate to go on a couple of holidays where I spent a lot of time reading and I was also in college with a lot of free time so I managed to get a lot of reading done between lessons. Now that I have started full-time employment I don’t want to give myself an unachieveable goal.

2019 Sequels

I started a lot of series in 2018 that I was un-able to finish. So on Goodreads, I created a shelf called my 2019 sequels shelf which was dedicated to the sequels to the book series I had started within the year. My plan is to read these books before the month of June, so the first half of the year is dedicated more to finishing or continuing series from 2018 and the 2nd half of the year is dedicated to new series and books. There are twelve books on this shelf and they include;

  1. The Arm of the Sphinx – Josiah Bancroft (Book 2/4 – The Tower of Babel series)
  2. The Fellowship of the Ring – J.R.R. Tolkien (Book 2/4, I am counting The Hobbit in this series.)
  3. The Girl in the Tower – Katherine Arden (Book 2/3 – The Winternight Trilogy)
  4. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – J.K. Rowling (Book 4/7 – Harry Potter series)
  5. Legendary – Stephanie Garber (Book 2/3 – The Caraval series)
  6. The Light Fantastic – Terry Pratchett (Book 2/41 – The Discworld series)
  7. The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe – C.S. Lewis (Book 2/7 – The Chronicles of Narnia)
  8. The Mermaid’s Voice Returns in this One (Book 3/on-going – The Women Are Some Kind of Magic series)
  9. Obsidio – Amie Kaufman (Book 3/3 – The Illuminae Files)
  10. Poirot Investigates – Agatha Christie (Book 3/41 – Hercule Poirot series, not including the new books by Sophie Hannah)
  11. Resort to Murder – T.P. Fielden (Book 2/on-going – A Miss Dimont Mystery series)
  12. Thunderhead – Neal Shusterman (Book 2/on-going – The Arc of the Sycthe series)

The ONTD Reading Challenge

On Goodreads, there is a group currently called “2018 ONTD Reading Challenge”. It’s run by two women and they pick a theme for each month of the year and you must follow the theme and read a book each month that fits within the theme. I thought it would be really fun to do this as it means I would read books I would have never thought of picking up. I also tried to apply some of the books from my 2019 sequels list to some of the themes between Jan and June. So I have made a small plan, of books that I could read during the month, and it looks like this:

January – Read a book that has been adapted into a movie or TV show.

  • The Light Fantastic (TV episode)
  • The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe (Movie)
  • The Fellowship of the Ring (Movie and TV episode)
  • Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Movie)
  • Poirot Investigates (Multiple TV episodes)

February – Read a romance or a book in which a couple breaks up.

I am not really a romance fan so the books I looked at all have elements of another genre.

  • Obsidio (Sci-fi)
  • Cinder – Marrisa Myer (Sci-fi)
  • The Night Circus – Erin Morgenstern (Fantasy + Historical Fiction)
  • The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo – Taylor Jenkins Reid (Historical Fiction)

March – Read a non-fiction book.

  • The Devil in the White City – Erik Larson
  • This Is Going To Hurt – Adam Kay
  • A Thousand Naked Strangers – Kevin Hazzard
  • The World of Lore: Monstrous Creatures – Aaron Mahnke

April – Read a book about time-travel.

  • 11/22/63 – Stephen King
  • All Our Yesterdays – Cristin Terrill

May – Read a book set in a country you have never been to.

  • The Girl in the Tower (Russia)
  • Confessions – Kinae Minato (Japan)
  • Shadow of the Fox – Julie Kagawa (Japan)
  • The Widows of Malabar Hill – Sujata Massey (India)

June – Read a book about friendship.

  • Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire/Order of the Phoenix (I would read OotP if I read GoF earlier in the year.)
  • The Fellowship of the Ring/The Two Towers (Same as above)
  • Neverworld Wake – Marisha Pessl

July – Read a re-telling.

  • Dorothy Must Die – Danielle Paige (The Wizard of Oz)
  • The Afterlife of Holly Chase – Cynthia Hand (A Christmas Carol)
  • The Child Thief – Brom (Peter Pan)
  • Spinning Silver – Naomi Novik (Rumplestiltskin)

August – Read a thriller where a female lead is in danger.

  • The Cheerleaders – Kara Thomas
  • Sometimes I Lie – Alice Feeney
  • Unraveling Oliver- Liz Nugent
  • Broken Things – Lauren Oliver

September – Read a comedy.

  • Three Bags Full – Leonie Swann
  • My Lady Jane – Cynthia Hand
  • The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue – Mackenzi Lee

October – Read a book about war.

  • A Tattooist of Auschwitz – Heather Morris

November – Read a graphic novel/manga.

  • From Hell – Alan Moore
  • Fullmetal Alchemist – Hiromu Arakawa
  • The Prince and the Dressmaker – Jen Wang

December – Read a book that won an award in 2019.

This book I would have to pick closer to the time. These are just books I have in mind that fit the theme, I may decide later to read something else.

Any authors you plan to read more of?

I would love to read some of Brandon Sanderson‘s books. I have heard great things about his work and it seems like the kind of thing I would enjoy.

Any genres you plan to read more of?

I would love to read more classics. It’s probably the only genre I haven’t attempted to read, outside of school. So it would be good to try the genre out.

Link to ONTD Reading Challenge – https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/208213-2018-ontd-reading-challenge

Link to my Goodreads page – https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/45790257-india

Bookish Questions Tag

So, I thought I would give a bit more of an insight into my reading habits and opinions by answering a few questions to do with all things books.

1.What was the last book you read? The Magician’s Nephew by C.S. Lewis

2. What book are you currently reading? I am currently reading The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkein. One of my best friends adores the series and she nearly cried when I told her I had decided to pick it up!

3. How often do you read? I try to read every day. I read on the bus mostly, when I’m commuting to and from work.

4. What was the last bad book you read? The Magician’s Nephew by C.S. Lewis. It was just so boring and lacklustre.

5. What’s your favourite book? I’d say right now my favourite book is Senlin Ascends by Josiah Bancroft. The worldbuilding, the intricate plot, the characters! Oh my gosh, it was amazing and I highly recommend it!

6. What’s your least favourite book? Probably Twilight by Stephanie Meyer. I never got the hype surrounding the book. I preferred the movies a lot more.

7. Do you prefer physical books or e-books? I prefer physical books, I like collecting books and seeing them all organised and colourful on my shelf. Also, it’s a lot more satisfying reading a physical book than an e-book.

8. What was your favourite book you had to read in school? It wasn’t actually a novel but it was the play, An Inspector Calls by J.B. Presitly. I love a good murder mystery so this appealed to me a lot!

9. What is your favourite book series? I would have to say, the Harry Potter series and the Percy Jackson/Heroes of Olympus series. Both series I read in my childhood and plan to re-read now i’m older.

10. What is your favourite genre? I can’t pick just one sadly, so i will have to go with, Fantasy, Murder Mystery and re-tellings (not sure if that’s a genre).

11. Who is your favourite fictional character? Again, I can’t pick just one! Hermione Granger from the Harry Potter series, Circe from Circe by Madeline Miller, Hercule Poirot and James from Lost Boy by Christina Henry.

12. Has a book ever transported you somewhere? I think all good books must be able to transport the reader to their world. Notable books where I found this happen includes; Senlin Ascends, Scythe by Neal Shusterman, Alice by Christina Henry and Caraval by Stephanie Garber.

13. How long does it take your to read a book? It depends really on how much I enjoy the book. If I really enjoy the book it could take 3-5 days but on average it takes me just over a week.

13. Where is your favourite place to read? I mostly used to just read in my bedroom but now that I must commute to and from work on the bus. I find that that’s where I love to read the most as it’s a perfect way to relax after a hectic day.

15. Who gave you your love of reading? Probably my Nan. She was the one who introduced me to Harry Potter which was the first set of books that I loved. I am now the person in my family who inspires other people to read which is really lovely.

16. What book is next on your list to read? I have a massive TBR list and I know that more books are coming due to Christmas being in a number of days but off the top of my head I’d say, The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis

17. What book have you re-read the most? Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. I have read that book 4 times so far.

18. Do you prefer to read one book at a time or several books at a time? I tend to read one book at a time but recently I have started reading two at at time. I find it hard to balance two books though so I will probably go back to just reading one.

19. What’s your policy on book-lending? I tend to not lend my books out to people. I have only ever done so with my mum and those books were And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie and The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle.

20. A genre you rarely read. I tend to not read contemporaries or romances. I don’t read a lot of contemporaries because they represent real-life and I prefer to get away from it and be transported into another world. I would only read a conetmporary if another genre was mixed in such as mystery or thriller. I don’t read romances as to me they can get quite boring, cringey and repetitive. I only read romances if it’s mixed in with another genre like fantasy.

21. Name a case in which hype ruined the book you were reading. I would say A Princess Saves Herself In This One by Amanda Lovelace. I was shocked and disappointed with what I read. It was the first poetry anthology I had ever read and I didn’t understand why it was hyped up as much as she was. I then read her 2nd anthology A Witch Doesn’t Burn In This One and that was AMAZING!

22. If you could read in a foreign language, what language would you choose? I would choose Japanese. I have a lot of Japanese authors on my list and one of my favourite books this year was written by a Japanese author. Battle Royale by Koushun Takami. It also means I get to read a variety of manga on initial release.

23. Books I am likely to bring on holiday. I would bring whatever is available. For example, if I have a lot of books given to me for Christmas that I haven’t read I will take them or I would just buy some books at Waterstones. Whatever I fancy to be honest.

24. Name a book you could not finish. I have DNF’d only a couple of books which I am happy about. The most recent book is The Magician’s Nephew. Others would include, New Moon by Stephanie Meyer, The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch, Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead and Wicked by Gregory Maguire. I mainly DNF’d these because the writing was hard to follow or because the plot was boring.

25. Do you like to keep your books organised? Yes. I organise my shelf by alphabetical order of authors surname and then by chronological order if it’s a series.

26. Have there been any books you have been avoiding? I read Senlin Acsends in April of this year and I still haven’t read the sequel, The Arm of the Sphinx, as I’m worried I might not enjoy it as much as the first. The same goes for Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. I couldn’t really get into the Prisoner of Azkaban until the final 6 chapters so I am worried that if I re-read Goblet of Fire I won’t enjoy it that much.

27. Name a book you didn’t expect to like but did. I was shocked by how much I enjoyed Eleanor Oliphant is Completley Fine by Gail Honeyman. I thought I wasn’t going to enjoy it because it was an adult contemporary (which isn’t a genre I read a lot) and by what people had told me I thought it was going to be sort of like a self-help book about learning to live instead of just surviving. But I was enthralled by the characters, the diaglouge and the plot wasn’t what it seems to be first hand which impressed me.

28. Do you wish to be a writer? I feel like I have great ideas that could be really good books but I lack the skill and could never produce a book that would make someone go wow! I would have to hire a ghost writer.

29. A book that was ruined by the movie adaptation. For me Percy Jackson and the Lighting Theif/Sea of Monsters. I read the series because I really enjoyed the movies and I was shocked by how bad the movies were compared to the books.

30. A movie that has done a book justice. For me I would say the original Death on the Nile movie starring Peter Ustinoff as Hercule Poirot. It’s quite dialogue heavy but it’s so intricately done.

The Series I Plan To Re-read in the Future.

2018 has probably been my best reading year to date. So far I have read 31 books beating my target of 22 and I still have one book left that I want to read in the last 2-3 weeks left of December. Now that we are nearing the end of the year I want to look forward and start planning books I would like to read in 2019 and while that post will be coming in the following weeks. This post is a bit different.

The books in this list are a mixture of series I have completed and want to read again and series I started reading a couple of years ago but never finished, with this series I would start with re-reading the books I had already read and then continuing where I left off.

The reason this isn’t in my 2019 plan is that I wouldn’t be able to finish all of these series in one year as well as reading other books. This is more of a plan to cover the next 2 or 3 years. First up…

  • Series: Harry Potter
  • Author: J.K Rowling
  • Status: Currently Re-reading 
  • Last Book I Read: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
  • No. of Books: 7

I decided early this year that I wanted to re-read the Harry Potter series. I have tried so many times to re-read the series, which I first read when I was 11, but I always gave up when it got to “Goblet of Fire”. The last time I tried to tackle this series I was 14 and got to the First Task chapter of the 4th book. Since then I have been listening to a variety of Harry Potter themed podcasts and it’s reignited my love for Harry Potter and the desire to re-read the series. One of the other main reasons was that I couldn’t remember much about the series from “Goblet of Fire” onwards especially not “Half-Blood Prince” and “Deathly Hallows” so I wanted to re-jig my memory and read the series through older eyes. 

So far I have read; “Philosopher’s Stone”, “Chamber of Secrets” and “Prisoner of Azkaban”. I loved the “Philosopher’s Stone” as it brought back a lot of fond memories for me and I loved the “Chamber of Secrets” due to the murder mystery element to it. My opinion of the book actually changed due to the re-read, I love it a lot more this time around. I liked “Prisoner of Azkaban” but didn’t love it. It was still very good but I just wasn’t drawn into the world as much as I was with the other two books. My plan is to read “Goblet of Fire” next year and carry on the series. After I read Harry Potter I will then begin to re-read…

  • Series: Percy Jackson and the Olympians
  • Author: Rick Riordan
  • Status: Finished series
  • No. of Books: 5

I got this series a couple of Christmas’ ago after my dad and I watched the movie and I loved it so much I asked for the books for Christmas and boy was I shocked by how bad the movies were. Those movies were the epitome of “the book was better”. I was always a massive fan of Greek Mythology and the idea of mixing modern day and ancient gods together blew my mind!

I finished this series nearly 5 years ago and remember loving it but that’s the only thing I can remember about these books as I have completely forgotten what happens in this series. The movies can’t help you as they were so badly done and there were only 2 made! So one of the reasons I wanted to read this book was to remind myself about what happens.

Another reason is I remember loving it so much! This series to me was one of the first series where I realised that there wasn’t just Harry Potter out there. I didn’t think I would ever find a series that would match my love for Harry Potter and yet here we are.

  • Series: The Heroes of Olympus
  • Author: Rick Riordan
  • Status: Need to finish
  • Last Book I read: The Mark of Athena (Book 3)
  • No. of Books: 5

You are going to see a lot of Rick Riordan in this post, just to make you all aware. I was really scared reading the Lost Hero as I thought I wasn’t going to love it as much as I loved the previous series. I wasn’t sure if I was going to like the new characters and I wasn’t sure what direction this book was going to go. I was relieved when I finished this book that I loved it just as much as I loved the original series and to me, it felt fresh and new, not using recycled storylines which was what I feared it was going to include. 

I haven’t finished this series, when I was reading the third book, “The Mark of Athena” the last book came out and I saw loads of spoilers posted by fans so I wasn’t really interested in finishing the series as I now knew the outcomes. So my plan is to re-read the first three books which I have already read first just so I can remind myself what is happening and then continue from there.

  • Series: The Trials of Apollo
  • Author: Rick Riordan
  • Status: To be read
  • No. of Books: 3

So I haven’t actually read the Trials of Apollo series. I haven’t even read one book. The reason this series is in the list is it’s continuation of the same world that “Percy Jackson and the Olympians” and” The Hereos of Olympus” series are in and I know that big things happen to characters introduced in the previous series’ so I feel like I need to complete this world as it’s not the end of the journey for Percy and other characters, hence why this series is here.

  • Series: Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard
  • Author: Rick Riordan
  • Status: Need to finish
  • Last Book I read: The Sword of Summer (Book 1)
  • No of Books: 3

I read this book two years ago during the summer holidays when I first decided I was going to focus on reading more. It was one of the first books I ever logged into Goodreads. To me this book was not Rick’s best work but I still enjoyed it regardless. I love Rick’s stories and imagination and to be honest I don’t know much about Norse Mythology so it would be nice to learn more about it as well as finishing this action-packed trilogy.

  • Series: The Chronicles of Narnia
  • Author: C.S. Lewis
  • Status: Currently Re-reading
  • Last Book I Read: The Magician’s Nephew (Book 1)
  • No. of Books: 7

I have had the entire book series standing on my book-shelf for I don’t know how long! I read up to “The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe” but haven’t read any of the following novels. During December I like to read smaller books just to amp up the numbers on my Goodreads reading challenge so I decided to pick up the Magician’s Nephew in the hopes of a quick read. That book is left unfinished at it was quite dull. I am hoping when I re-read the next book I won’t be so disappointed. I mainly wanted to read this series as I love this world so much, I watched the first 3 movies and adored them and I want to continue being in this world. 

  • Series: Agatha Christie’s entire collection.
  • Author: Agatha Christie
  • Status: Need to Finish
  • Last Book I Read: The Murder on the Links (Book 2 in the Hercule Poirot Series)
  • No. of Books: To many to count

I have watched adaptations of Agatha Christie’s work since I was about 10. I have the whole box set of every episode of the Hercule Poirot TV series but I have only ever read 3 of her books. Two which were from her Hercule Poirot series and one which was a standalone story. I want to read Christie’s work because I love her imagination and genius. Having watched everything unfold on the screen I would love to now watch it unfold on the page. I also love the fact that there are so many books and I want to challenge myself to read all of them. I love a challenge.

So there you have it. Quite a lot of books to get through. The next book I will be reading starting Monday will be The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien.

The Magician’s Nephew Re-read Review

  • Author: C.S. Lewis
  • Series: The Chronicles of Narnia (Book 1 of 7)
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • No. of Pages: 221
  • Date Read: 04.12.18 – 10.12.18 (Did not finish, stopped on page 148)
  • Rating: 2 stars 

“Make your choice, adventurous stranger; Strike the bell and bide the danger, or wonder, till it drives you mad, what would have followed if you had.”


This book was disappointing, to say the least. I remember reading it a couple of years ago and liking it. When I thought about reading the Chronicles of Narnia series I was quite excited to re-read this book. I wish I didn’t.

POSITIVES:

The magic in this book is really lovely. I loved the idea of the rings that took you to a magical wood that could take to a variety of worlds and I loved the idea of Charn being this post-apocalyptic world caused by a jealous Witch. I really enjoyed the scene where Narnia forms and we see Aslan for the first time. They were all great ideas and were written really well. I just loved the imagniation.

Lewis’ writing when describing magic and scenes where magic is abundant was really beautiful, he had a way with words that I have always tried to replicate but never mastered. I really enjoyed his description of the “Wood between Worlds” and the beginning of Narnia, he places you within the scene as if you are seeing the events unfold alongside the characters.

NEGATIVES:

The characters were incredibly two-dimensional and black and white. You were either evil or good there is no in-between. This made for very bland characters that I didn’t care that much about. The children were incredibly boring which was frustrating to read, as it was their story and their journey. Queen Jadis was my favourite character but again she was very bulk-standard. She was just really evil, which I don’t normally mind but it just seemed that,  like with all the characters, she lacked personality.

The first half of the plot was incredibly rushed. Within one paragraph we are meant to believe that Digory and Polly become the best of friends who open up about the tough times in their life. It was quite hard to believe and another reason why I couldn’t warm up to them as it all felt slightly fake and forced. I loved Charn and really liked the chapters when they were there but again it was rushed, not much was explored which was really disappointing as it was a really interesting, probably the most interesting, part of the story. And then suddenly, Queen Jadis is living it up in London causing havoc and it just felt like the plot was all over the place which was also disappointing.

Overall the story was lacklustre, great ideas but bad execution.