Yes, I know. It’s September already. How/when did that happen? Before we start cracking on with Autumnal stuff (note I’m already donning a knitted jumper), let’s take an opportunity to look back over summer through my August wrap up.
What I Read
This month I read four books – I had planned to get through a lot more but then, life! I hate it when people apologise for not reading enough though. We all read in different ways, right?! This month I have prioritised being able to see my family and friends a little more and I am completely ok with that.
The four books in my August Wrap Up are…
The Natural Way of Things by Charlotte Wood
This was a random purchase based mostly on the quote on the front describing it as “The Handmaid’s Tale for our age”. There are similarities: The Natural Way of Things is a dystopian story of female oppression and mistreatment by the patriarchy. In it, two women wake up from a drugged sleep to find themselves imprisoned in a shack in the middle of the dessert. They soon discover there are more women there just like them. Their heads are shaved, they are forced to complete seemingly pointless manual labour and live in fear of physical and sexual abuse. They have something else in common too – they have all been involved in a sexual scandal with a powerful man.
I thought this story was interesting and had some intriguing concepts but it wasn’t as deep or powerful as The Handmaid’s Tale for me.
The Parisian by Isabella Hammad
The Parisian is about Midhat Kamal who in 1914 leaves Palestine to study in Paris. Whilst he is there, he falls in love with a French woman Jeanette but life gets in the way of their romance. On his return to Palestine, he must come to terms with the life and duties he is bound too. This book is really rich in detail and completely immersive. Full of history and the political events in Palestine at the time, with World War II on the horizon, this is a great read about love, war, choices and humanity.
Intimations by Zadie Smith
This is my latest review so I won’t go into too much detail so you can check out the post itself, however, simply put, Zadie Smith has done it again. Her latest offering is this collection of six essays penned during lockdown that offer a thoughtful, considered and an important snapshot of this moment of time. Both broad and personal, I really recommend this.
Supper Club by Lara Williams
One of my purchases from Storysmith! This book is about Roberta, a twenty-something-year-old woman who has spent her life hungry. So along with her best friend, she creates a Supper Club. This is a place for women to take up more space, through their growing bodies and the confidence of being free from bad men and from being made to feel small. Another interesting concept and I have a review coming up for this soon!
On the list for next month
Often wonder why I write this bit because I never, ever stick to them. But it’s nice to plan. This month I feel like some real escapism and some books to get my teeth into.
As of this moment (and almost definitely subject to change) I am thinking of reading The Flat Share by Beth O’Leary (last person on earth to read it, I feel like), Heartstopper by Alice Oseman, and a carryover from last month The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller.
That’s it for my August Wrap Up! Let me know your best read of August in the comments.