Comedy · contemporary · Non-Fiction · Short Stories

Things My Son Needs to Know About the World – Fredrik Backman ★★★★

Blurb; Things My Son Needs to Know About the World collects the personal dispatches from the front lines of one of the most daunting experiences any man can experience: fatherhood.As he conveys his profound awe at experiencing all the “firsts” that fill him with wonder and catch him completely unprepared, Fredrik Backman doesn’t shy away from revealing his own false steps and fatherly flaws, tackling issues both great and small, from masculinity and mid-life crises to practical jokes and poop.In between the sleep-deprived lows and wonderful highs, Backman takes a step back to share the true story of falling in love with a woman who is his complete opposite, and learning to live a life that revolves around the people you care about unconditionally. Alternating between humorous side notes and longer essays offering his son advice as he grows up and ventures out into the world, Backman relays the big and small lessons in life, including:-How to find the team you belong to
-Why airports explain everything about religion and war
-The reason starting a band is crucial to cultivating and keeping friendships
-How to beat Monkey Island 3
-Why, sometimes, a dad might hold onto his son’s hand just a little too tightThis is an irresistible and insightful collection, perfect for new parents and fans of Backman’s “unparalleled understanding of human nature” (Shelf Awareness). As he eloquently reminds us, “You can be whatever you want to be, but that’s nowhere near as important as knowing that you can be exactly who you are.”

My Review; I have loved every book by this author so far and this did not disappoint me at all. It is a short and easy read at just over 160 pages. Parts had me laughing out loud. In this story we learn more about the author and his dad side… Parenting isn’t easy.

Within Fredrick has addressed some things he would like his son to know when he’s older. However, he does drift off now and again into funny unrelated stories. This is a book not to be taken seriously. I throughally enjoyed it. Something different! Something for his son to read and laugh at when he’s older. As parents we can all relate to at least one part of this story. Can easily be read in one sitting.

Fredrick has gone out of his genre zone here and given us something different and it’s paid off! A well deserved four stars from me. Highly recommend. Perfect for those readers with busy lives and not much time.

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Medical · Non-Fiction

Unnatural Causes – Dr Richard Shephard ★★★★

Blurb; The dead do not hide the truth and they never lie. Through me the dead can speak …

As the country’s top forensic pathologist, Dr Richard Shepherd has spent a lifetime uncovering the secrets of the dead.

When death is sudden or unexplained, it falls to Shepherd to establish the cause. Each post-mortem is a detective story in its own right – and Shepherd has performed over 23,000 of them. Through his skill, dedication and insight, Dr Shepherd solves the puzzle to answer our most pressing question: how did this person die?

From serial killer to natural disaster, ‘perfect murder’ to freak accident, Shepherd takes nothing for granted in pursuit of truth. And while he’s been involved in some of the most high-profile cases of recent times, it’s often the less well known encounters that prove the most perplexing, intriguing and even bizarre. In or out of the public eye, his evidence has put killers behind bars, freed the innocent and turned open-and-shut cases on their heads.

But a life in death, bearing witness to some of humanity’s darkest corners, exacts a price and Shepherd doesn’t flinch from counting the cost to him and his family.

My Review; I picked this one up cause I had seen it around a lot and thought it was similar to This Is Going To Hurt by Adam Kay. Same genre (medical), TOTALLY DIFFERENT!

This is a non fiction book with an indepth look in to the life/work of a Pathologist and I when I say indepth I mean it. Parts are very descriptive, Stomach turning. It will take you on a real life journey to many post mortems from babies to the elderly and all in between. Which may be an unpleasant and an unsuitable read for some readers.

However, it is an eye opening read, I learnt a lot from this book. It contains some of the worlds biggest terror attacks and devastating incidents. We get a good glimpse into what happens after death, how they reach verdicts and how pathologists conduct their work. It is brutally honest and fascinating. A real page turner and brilliantly written.

I awarded a well deserved four stars and would highly recommend to you all.

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Emotional · Historical fiction · Non-Fiction · War

*BLOG TOUR* The Librarian of Auschwitz – Antonio Iturbe ★★★★★

Blurb; ‘It wasn’t an extensive library. In fact, it consisted of eight books and some of them were in poor condition. But they were books. In this incredibly dark place, they were a reminder of less sombre times, when words rang out more loudly than machine guns…’

Fourteen-year-old Dita is one of the many imprisoned by the Nazis at Auschwitz. Taken, along with her mother and father, from the Terezín ghetto in Prague, Dita is adjusting to the constant terror that is life in the camp. When Jewish leader Freddy Hirsch asks Dita to take charge of the eight precious books the prisoners have managed to smuggle past the guards, she agrees. And so Dita becomes the secret librarian of Auschwitz, responsible for the safekeeping of the small collection of titles, as well as the ‘living books’ – prisoners of Auschwitz who know certain books so well, they too can be ‘borrowed’ to educate the children in the camp.

But books are extremely dangerous. They make people think. And nowhere are they more dangerous than in Block 31 of Auschwitz, the children’s block, where the slightest transgression can result in execution, no matter how young the transgressor…

My Review; Oh my heart. I teared up so many times througout reading this, I cannot even begin to imagine what it must have been like. Not an easy read, but one that has changed my life and will stick with me forever. It’s changed the way I look at life and realise how lucky we all are compared to how they were treated and had to survive in Auschwitz. Just terrible.

The Librarian of Aushwitz is beautifully translated and written by Lilit Zekulin Thwaites. It is based on a true story and it hurts how close to the truth it really is, makes it all the more real and heart-breaking.

Within the story you really get to know each character individually and when you lose one, IT HURTS! It’s upsetting. I felt that! The story highlights how important friends, family and books are… Even though there was only 8 books they meant the world to block 31 and the children. There are so many beautiful quotes about books in this story. It was their form of escape from reality during the worst of times.

Ditas character (based off a real woman). Wow. She was only fourteen and had so much responsibilty placed on her, she risked her life technically daily. She is one strong and determined woman. I really do look up to this woman and appreciate her and applaud her for what she did. What a wondeful woman! I love to meet her.

An absolute eye opener of a read! The truth is in this book about what really happened at Auschwitz camps. I’m tearing up writing this review. A must read. A well deserved five stars from me and it obviously has a space in my top twenty of the year and honestly this might be stuck with me for life. I learnt a lot from this book.

(Sorry for the long review, if you made it this far, thank you).

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