“The Burning” by Laura Bates

Thanks to Simon and Schuster UK and NetGalley for the Advance Review Copy in exchange for an honest review.

When I heard that Laura Bates of Everyday Sexism was writing a novel, I was really excited to read it. Her work is often discussed in the school in which I teach and the website and Twitter feed are used by pupils when looking at issues around sexism, social media, gender bias and peer pressure. I was keen to see whether a fictional approach would be able to tie in with the topics we’ve explored already.

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“Enchantée” by Gita Trelease

Thanks to Pan Macmillan and NetGalley for the Advance Review Copy in exchange for an honest review.

So first of all, a confession. I am obsessed with the French Revolution. I collect books about this period of history including some really rare out of print French books. I even have a book written by Marie Antoinette’s hairdresser printed in the 1800s. I say this not to boast, but to highlight how much of a big deal this period is to me.

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“They Were Her Property” by Stephanie E. Jones-Rogers

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Thanks to Yale University Press and NetGalley for providing me with an Advance Review Copy in exchange for an honest review.

This is an important book in a much-overlooked topic. All too often in historical writing we see white women being given a free pass when it comes to their culpability for the horrors of slavery. This book seeks to set the record straight and change our assumptions about antebellum women slave-owners.

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“Notes to Self” by Emilie Pine

Thanks to Penguin Books UK and NetGalley for the Advance Review Copy in exchange for an honest review.

I actually finished this book a few weeks ago but felt I needed some time to ruminate about it before writing my review. This book deals with some really tough subjects and issues that have also affected me. It’s raw, unflinchingly honest and personal and I think many other women will feel the same affinity with the author whilst reading it. Continue reading ““Notes to Self” by Emilie Pine”

“Monsters” by Sharon Dogar

 

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Thanks to Penguin Random House UK and NetGalley for providing me with an Advance Review Copy in exchange for an honest review. 

This novel follows the early life of Mary Godwin (Mary Shelley to be) and Percy Bysshe Shelley as well as some of their more well-known family members and friends such as Claire Clairmont and Lord Byron. This book is based on the lives of real historical figures who have been dead for nearly 200 years and many of the events of their fascinating lives are relatively well known, particularly as there has recently been a Mary Shelley movie starring Elle Fanning. With that in mind there may be some light spoilers in this review.  

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“Salt on Your Tongue” by Charlotte Runcie

 

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Thanks to Canongate and NetGalley for the review copy. 

I’m beginning to wonder if Canongate are even capable of publishing a bad book. 

Salt on Your Tongue by Charlotte Runcie is a wonderful exploration of women and the sea. Interspersed with Runcie’s personal experiences as a woman and her relationships with women in her life, in particular her grandmother, are writings about myths, folkore and superstitions linked to the sea as well as history, art, religion, literature, culture and the natural world. There is a Scottish focus for much of the book, particularly the East Coast of Scotland. I grew up in the Highlands of Scotland very close to the sea and have always felt its lure. Some of my ancestors were fishermen and many relatives both current and distant still live by the sea. The author explores other coastal settings in Scotland familiar to me such as Skye, the Scottish Islands, Edinburgh, and the coastal regions around Fife as well as other settings around the UK and the world.   Continue reading ““Salt on Your Tongue” by Charlotte Runcie”

“My Name is Monster” by Katie Hale

Thanks to Canongate and Netgalley for the Advance Review Copy.

“I think it takes a monster to survive when nobody else can”

This novel is about Monster who becomes Mother when she finds another Monster. Got that? Well buckle in for a wild ride.

The novel is largely set in a post apocalyptic Britain. War and Sickness have killed everyone on earth (as far as we know) and a woman called Monster is the last person left alive. She ekes out an existence at an old farmhouse through scavenging and growing vegetables. On one of her scavenging trips to the ‘City’ she comes across a young girl who she names ‘Monster’ and she then becomes ‘Mother’. Continue reading ““My Name is Monster” by Katie Hale”