Book Recommendations

Fiction Books With Mental Health Rep – World Mental Health Day

It’s World Mental Health Day and I am really glad to see more people talking about mental health. It affects so many people and yet there is still so much stigma around it.

So I wanted to share some books that I’ve read and loved that have really great mental health rep. I will also be writing a post about non-fiction mental health books, so keep an eye out for that too!

So here are some of the books that I read that I think have great mental health rep:

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1 All The Things We Never Said by Yasmin Rahman – This deals with depression, self harm and suicidal thoughts so it can be a difficult read but I really loved the rep. You can read my full review here

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2 The Weight of Our Sky by Hanna Alkaf – This book is an ownvoices book with really great mental health rep especially as it discusses how cultural or religious beliefs impact someone seeking help.

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3 Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell – This was one of the first contemporaries that I read and loved because I really related to Cath and how her anxiety affected her when she started university. You can read my full review here

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4 No Fixed Address by Susin Neilsen – This book shows how a parent having mental health problems can also affect their children. You can read my review here

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5 Are we all Lemmings and Snowflakes? By Holly Bourne – I really loved seeing characters all struggling with different mental health problems in this book. You can read my review here

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6 The Loneliest Girl in the Universe by Lauren James – The main character suffers from anxiety in this book and I really loved how it was shown.

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7 Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo – I really loved seeing how Kaz deals with his PTSD in this book. You can read my review here

So these are some of my favourite books featuring mental health. Let me know what books you’ve read with great mental health rep!

Book Recommendations

Books I Love By Authors In The UK – Part 2

This is the second part to discussing books that are written by UK authors. I think that they deserve all the love so go read these books!

You can read part 1 here

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1 Reasons to Stay Alive & Notes on a Nervous Planet by Matt Haig – I absolutely love his work and how open he is about mental health. I highly recommend reading his books.

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2 No Big Deal by Bethany Rutter – I loved the body positivity in her book so much! Everyone should read this! You can read my review here

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3 The Loneliest Girl in the Universe & The Quiet at the End of the World by Lauren James – I love all her books but my favourite is definitely Loneliest Girl and Quiet at the End of the World. You can read my review for Quiet here

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4 The Hormone Diaries by Hannah Witton – I love the work she does and her book was so insightful and I definitely recommend it!

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5 Artemis Fowl series by Eoin Colfer – One of my childhood favourite books! I absolutely adore this series and I am so excited for the spinoff. I also read his new adult fantasy book and I loved that too! You can read my review for Artemis Fowl here

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6 The Extinction Trials by S.M. Wilson – A book with dinosaurs! Obviously I would love this trilogy! It is fast paced and action packed and if you love dinosaurs then you need to read these!

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7 The State of Sorrow by Melinda Salisbury – This book was one that came in a book box and took me by surprise! I really loved it!

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8 It’s All in your Head by Rae Earl – A book about mental health written specially for the youth. It covers topics that are relevant to the youth so this one I definitely recommend reading.

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9 Are We All Lemmings and Snowflakes by Holly Bourne – Holly has so many books but this one is my favourite! Another book that has wonderful complex mental health rep and I especially loved how she wrote about being kind to each other and yourself. You can read my review here

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10 Alex Rider series by Anthony Horowitz – Another childhood book that I loved and so excited to see the series is being continued.

So I will probably be writing a part 3 soon! Please do let me know any authors from the UK that you love!

Monthly Wrap Up

July Monthly Wrap Up

This month has been really busy for me so I haven’t had as much time to read. Plus I’ve been in a weird slump where I want to read but also don’t want to read. Yes, I know, it’s weird.

I met Hannah Witton at the beginning of the month when she went on tour for her new book, The Hormone Diaries. I absolutely loved the event. It was fun and insightful and honestly you should all go read her book.

Then at the end of the month I attended YALC! I went with my sisters and I’ve written two blog posts about my experience. You can read them here: Part 1 and Part 2

So anyways back to the books I read this month! I’ve found some new favourites and some which were well and truly disappointing.

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So this is what I read this month:

1 An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir – A reread because I want to read A Reaper at the Gates and I loved it just as much the second time around as I did when I read it a couple years ago.

Rating: 5/5

2 We Hunt the Flame by Hafsah Faizal – I would die for the zumra okay! I absolutely loved her writing and her world building and such amazing complex characters!

Rating: 4.5/5

3 Once and Future by AmyRose Capetta & Cori McCarthy – I cannot begin to explain what a mess of a book this is. The plot is all over the place and how has no-one picked up on the racism in this book?!

Rating: 1/5

4 Caraval by Stephanie Garber – Another reread and I forgot how much I loved this book! I loved Scarlet and Julian and how vivid the imagery is!

Rating: 5/5

5 Everyday Sexism by Laura Bates – Wow this book made me so mad. The stories were so awful and me and my husband were absolutely disgusted at how vile men can be. Yet it’s a discussion that needs to be had.

Rating: 4/5

6 Girls of Paper and Fire by Natasha Ngan – I did not expect to love this book as much as I did! I could not put this book down and I am so looking forward to the next book! Though I would advise everyone to check the trigger warnings before reading.

Rating: 5/5

7 You’re Crushing It: Positivity for Living your Real Life by Lex Croucher – I really enjoyed reading this. It’s a book you can dip in and out of and although it deals with heavy topics, it does in a way that doesn’t seem too much.

Rating: 4/5

8 The Paper and Hearts Society by Lucy Powrie – I was really looking forward to reading this but I was really disappointed by it.
Rating: 2.5/5

9 Bright Ruin by Vic James – I put off reading this book for ages because I was terrified of what Vic would do to my favourite characters and I was right to. But I still absolutely loved this book!

Rating: 5/5

So these are the books I read this month!

I also wrote reviews for these books:

1 No Big Deal by Bethany Rutter
2 Light Upon Light by Nur Fadhilah Wahid
3 Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson
4 Queen of Ruin by Tracy Banghart

And here a couple other things I wrote about on my blog this month:

Places I would love to travel to
Surah Kahf – People of the Cave

And that’s all for my wrap up this month!

What were your favourite reads this month? Were you disappointed by any books?

Book Events

My YALC Experience – Part 1

This year was the first time that I had booked tickets to attend YALC for all three days and I was so excited about going and a little nervous as I wasn’t sure I would manage such long days with my health. But my sisters were going to be there with me so at least I wouldn’t be on my own if I needed help.

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I did mostly enjoy being at YALC, it was amazing to be surrounded by so many bookish people and the atmosphere was awesome! My favourite day was Friday as that’s when the authors I really wanted to see were there and it was the absolute best being able to finally meet them!

But before I talk about my favourite parts I want to talk about the issues that I had with the event.

My main issue was issues with accessibility. I found that there was a lack of seating that was available. There were literally no seats anywhere except the main stage where the panels were. For someone who suffers from chronic pain it made it really difficult for me during the day as sitting on the floor is really difficult for me and the standing for long periods meant that it made my pain really bad, especially carrying books or anything else I picked up during the day. (Even though I did use the cloakroom and have a suitcase to put my books instead of carrying them)

They said they had a chill out zone but again it was literally an empty space where people were sitting on the floor. This combined with the heat and humidity triggered my pain and anxiety. So much so that the pain made it impossible for me to even attend the Sunday which I am really upset about. I hope that there will be more seating available next year as it will really be the deciding factor on whether I can attend or not again and as much as I would love to go I don’t want to trigger my pain to the extent that I can barely get out of bed. It’s just lucky that I had my sisters to help me.

Another thing I want to mention is that some places were first x number of people get the ARC and I felt this was unfair and put those with disabilities at a disadvantage. We cannot stand outside and queue hours before YALC opens or rush to get there to be first. I also felt this could be pretty unsafe as the crowds could cause injury. I know most places did a raffle which I felt was much fairer and accessible to everyone and I hope that everyone will adopt this for next year.

I also wished they were a little more organised with the virtual signing system. It wasn’t clear whether we had to get a ticket for every author before but on the day we found out by chance we needed to get them for each author. We had to repeatedly come and check if we could get in the queue and while I understand that, that is necessary, if we are told to come back three times, after being told every time come back in 10 minutes it does get frustrating. My sister was told to come back at a certain time for an authors signing but when she came back at that time (which she was told by staff to do) the author had finished signing and left so she actually missed out on meeting the author she was most excited to meet.

The last thing I want to mention is that there was very few authors of colour and when I saw the author line up I was a little disappointed, although not surprised. I do hope that there are more authors of colour there in the future. It’s a little ironic that white authors are there talking about their books with PoC, yet authors of colour are few and far between at the same event.

Another part of diversity that I want to add is the lack of promotion or anything really, geared towards boys. I spent ages looking for something there that would interest my husband that I could say that he would enjoy if he came but there wasn’t much. Although I do have to say that this isn’t solely an issue at YALC but in general, book events are marketed towards girls.

Okay so I know I’ve gone on about the issues I had with being at YALC and I will probably not go again for all three days unless the seating issue is dealt with appropriately. But I will be posting another blog post about my highlights tomorrow!

Did any of you experience any difficulties of being there?

Friday Favourites

Friday Favourites – Books Outside Your Usual Genre

This is hosted by Something of the Book who created this tag out of a love for lists. There are different topics for us all to be able to take part and you can find the prompts here. There isn’t a specific number of favourites so it’s entirely up to you how many you share. You can share your most or least favourites too!

So this weeks topic is books outside your usual genre, I tend to read a lot of fantasy and sci-fi so I guess they would be my usual genre so I’m going to share some books that I loved that were outside my usual genre.

1 The City of Brass by S.A. Chakraborty – Okay so if you know me then you know that I will shove this book in your face any chance I get and yes while this may count as fantasy it also counts as historical fiction so I’m including it! So anyways…GO READ THIS BOOK!

2 One of Us is Lying by Karen McManus – this is a thriller and I don’t usually read them but this intrigued me as it got so much hype and I’m so glad I read it because I loved it!

3 Love From A to Z by S.K. Ali – I never usually read romance but a halal romance with a hijabi on the cover? How could I resist?! It’s safe to say I loved this book!

4 All the Things we Never Said by Yasmin Rahman – I have never related to a contemporary book dealing with mental health so much! There’s a Muslim character and her religious beliefs are a part of her life so it was amazing to see that in there!

5 Geekerella by Ashley Poston – contemporaries have always been a hit and miss for me but I adore this book! It’s super cute and nerdy and I adore the characters!

So these are some of my favourite books outside my usual genre!

What books have you loved outside your usual genre?