October Book Reviews

Without a doubt and by some sheer wand wave, October has definitely been my most successful reading month so far.  Despite being up to my ~ ears ~ in uni work and assignment planning, being plagued with emergency dentist appointments, travelling up and down the country and working flat out both at my internet employment + waitressing job, I have read (and listened) to more books than ever.

This month, I rediscovered my love for audiobooks, swallowed two Terry Pratchett novels and actually did my uni reading for once. Where is my medal?

Follow me via Goodreads for daily reading updates + book recommendations. 

Thank You For The Days: A Boy’s Own Adventures in Radio and Beyond by Mark Radcliffe

Mark Radcliffe, of BBC Radio 1 and Glastonbury telly coverage, is one of the more compelling autobiographical voices I have read in an age.  He has the ability to make you feel as if you and he are conversing over subjects and events you both experienced and allows you to feel involved in the narrative picture he is painting.

His autobiography, Thank You For The Days, touches on important days in Radcliffe’s life – the times where David Bowie asked him for advice, the afternoon where he toured the town with Dr Feelgood, his first starstruck meeting with Annie Nightingale and eating quiche with Kate Bush.

So moreish you will want more, Radcliffe’s Thank You For The Days is an essential read for any music buff.

Mort by Terry Pratchett

If you google the world’s favourite Discworld novels, Mort creeps into listicles again and again.  Why? Because the fourth in the Discworld series is simply glorious – an amalgamation of contrasting sunshine and grimness.

The recurring character of Death picks up a downbeat, unemployed boy called Mort, thus beginning the career of Death’s apprentice.  Not only does Mort act with his heart over his head by sparring a soul but also starts a chain reaction which could change Discworld forever.

Mystery and wit streaked with some oh-so-pleasureable moments – I may eat my words, but Mort is going to be difficult to beat.

The Tragedy of Richard III by William Shakespeare

The second and final Shakespearian tragedy I have been prescribed this year (see my thoughts on the first, King Lear, here) The Tragedy of Richard III was a morbid affair.

A hard read with little respite or reward, the historical play is best to read if familiar with the story of Richard claiming the throne.  Funnily, I actually enjoyed Philippa Gregory’s version of events in The White Queen to the revered Shakespeare.  An English student who does not enjoy the bard.  Is this treason?

The Revenger’s Tragedy by Thomas Middleton

The best of the bunch in regards to the three plays I consumed, The Revenger’s Tragedy was witty, clever and left you desiring to see the play performed live-in-action.  I have already been scouring the web to find a company putting on this ironic tragedy, but am currently coming up trumps.  Easy to read yet quick-paced with main lines and subtexts weaving within one another constantly.  Gold, pure gold.  Who ever knew I could enjoy reading a script so much?

The Malcontent by John Marston

The third in the trio of tragedies I have had to read for university this month, The Malcontent is an early Jacobean play considered one of the more important pieces of literature from the English Renaissance.  Brimming with disguise, desire for power and deceit, The Malcontent was thoroughly enjoyable once a Shmoop synopsis explained to me what the hell was going on.

Sourcery by Terry Pratchett (audiobook)

I cannot believe that I forgot how bloody great audiobooks are!  I’ve been drying my hair while listening to someone chatter away in my ear, been able to walk home from work without bumping into lampposts and cooked up a storm in the kitchen while embarking in the next adventure of Rincewind the wizard.

Sourcery – the fifth Discworld novel and the third Rincewind – sees the return of the luggage, alongside some new faces (Conina, the daughter of Cohen The Barbarian’s daughter) who unite to overthrow a child sorcerer who has thrown rules and The Unseen University to the wind.  Glorious, witty and as-ever insanely cleaver; Sourcery is made of fine things.

Belinda Blinked 3 by Rocky Flintstone (podcast) 

Without a doubt, My Dad Wrote A Porno series three is more than worthy of a mention via October’s Book Club blog post.  Not only have I allowed myself to gain some questionable eyebrow raises while snorting back laughter in the milk aisle and cried real joyous tears while in the changing room of the swimming baths, but I have successfully cringed into my pillow more times than watching the entire Twilight Saga.

The narration and commentary of Belinda Blinked 3 is the best thing I have stuck in my ears this month.  However, I am sure Belinda herself could rival me on sticking bad things in her ear holes.

Lethal White by Robert Galbraith 

The first of three J. K. Rowling books which I sucked up this month, Lethal White was a phenomenal read.  Currently, it is my contender for the best book I have read this year (alongside The Book Of Dust Vol I by Philip Pullman, Mort by Terry Pratchett and Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz).

I’ve already jumped the gun on Lethal White and wrote a spoiler-free splurge of thoughts here.

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone & The Chamber of Secrets by J.K Rowling (audiobook)

The Harry Potter audiobooks and film adaptations are my comfort blankets.  Bad day? Stick Harry Potter on.  Great day? Stick Harry Potter on.  In October I managed to plough through both Philosopher’s Stone and Chamber of Secrets via the magical voice of Stephen Fry.

If you are yet to indulge within the audiobook recordings of J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series then you are seriously missing a jigsaw part of your life. The description of Ron Weasley’s Chuddley Cannon plastered bedroom, the excitement of the Quidditch matches and the firm friendship constantly blossoming through Harry, Ron and Hermionie. I am forever in awe.

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