2018 in books!

Hey y’all! Happy new year!!

It’s been a hot minute! How is everyone doing? How was 2018 for you? It was quite dramatic for me to say the least but it ended with a bang! If you’re following me on Instagram you already know what I’m talking about and if you’re not then ask yourself if this is really how you want to start your 2019.

I read 60 books last year (59 actual books plus the one my fiancé made for me. Yes he made a picture book with the story of how we met and basically our journey together so far. If that isn’t the most romantic thing ever! )

So let’s get to it shall we? I read a total of 60 books like I mentioned earlier. Here is a mini breakdown. Out of the 60 books, 7 were Nonfiction, 53 fiction.

15 books by African authors,

37 books by female authors

19 books by male authors

13 paperbacks

18 Audiobooks and 19 ebooks.

From this breakdown, it is apparent I like audiobooks and ebooks just as much if not more than paperbacks. Oh and whooosh! I clearly have a thing for female writers!

So out of all 60 books I read, four books stuck out to me and I’m sure I’ll probably reread them in the nearest future. The four books are;

1. Educated by Tara Westover

2. Beartown by Fredrick Backman

3. The book of Negroes by Lawrence Hill

4. Born a crime by Trevor Noah

Guys! You really should get these books and read them. I laughed a lot, almost cried, screamed and giggled while reading them.

I’m excited and a bit nervous about 2019 but I know and trust that God will handle everything so I’m chilling.

I plan to read 60 books this year and that’s because I have professional exams coming up, wedding planning (still feels weird saying this) and a whole lot to do this year by God’s grace. I’m putting zero pressure on myself to read 60 books. If I end up reading more, Awesome! If I don’t, awesome!

So here’s to reading more books and taking each day as it comes!


Have you started any book this year?

How’s the new year treating you so far?

Book Review : How To Stop Time – Matt Haig

Hey people! I haven’t posted a book review in a bit not because I’m not reading but life has been a bit crazy lately. I shall be doing a life update post soon.

I absolutely loved loved loved reading this book. Titi actually bought it on her trip to Bermuda. If you haven’t read about her trip, you can read about it here, here and here.

Book Title: How to stop time

Author: Matt Haig

Published February 6, 2018 by Viking

ISBN: 0525522875

Blurb

‘The first rule is that you don’t fall in love’ he said… ‘There are other rules too, but that is the main one. No falling in love. No staying in love. No daydreaming of love. If you stick to this you will just about be okay.’ A love story across the ages – and for the ages – about a man lost in time, the woman who could save him, and the lifetimes it can take to learn how to live Tom Hazard has a dangerous secret. He may look like an ordinary 41 year old, but owing to a rare condition, he’s been alive for centuries. Tom has lived history — performing with Shakespeare, exploring the high seas with Captain Cook and sharing cocktails with Scott Fitzgerald. Now, he just wants an ordinary life. So Tom moves back to London, his old home, to become a high school history teacher — the perfect job for someone who has witnessed the city’s history first hand. Better yet, a captivating French teacher at his school seems fascinated by him. But the Albatross society, the secretive group which protects people like Tom has one rule: Never fall in love. As painful memories of his past and the erratic behavior of the society’s watchful leader threaten to derail his new life and romance, the one thing he can’t have just happens to be the one thing that might save him. Tom will have to decide once and for all whether to remain stuck in the past, or finally begin living in the present. How to stop time is a big hearted, wildly original novel about losing and finding yourself, the inevitability of change, and how with enough time to learn, we just might find happiness.

I read this book in one week.

It’s a strange but awesome book. I love books that make me imagine things, books that take me on a journey, books that can temporarily have all my attention and this definitely ticked all the boxes. It started off a bit slow and confusing but it started to make sense as I progressed. Although, the end was a bit predictable, it was what I hoped for and was still intriguing.img_20180407_132821-011693549723865907230.jpeg

The story revolves around the main character Tom Hazard, a man who has a condition called Anageria which develops around puberty which in plain terms means he aged slower than the regular human. He looks a year older every 15 years. How insane? He looks about 41 years old but in reality is 439 years old. He took us on a journey of his life from 1599 to present day 21st century. The timeline was a bit too scattered for me. It went from 1982 to present day to 1599. I still was able to follow but I’d have preferred if it wasn’t so scattered.img_20180407_132754-01851876731128832482.jpeg

Another aspect I liked was that he incorporated famous people like Shakespeare, Captain Cook, Scott Fitzgerald and his wife Zelda into the story. Although it was a bit pointless if you look at the book as a whole but I found it super cool partly because I haven’t read about the lives of these people.

Of course having lived for over four hundred years, Tom has seen it all. Literally. He went through loss and then love and Hapiness and more losses. Everyone has a thing to learn from our obsession with time and the future. I don’t want to share too much so as not to spoil it for you but it’s definitely a good read! I gave it 4 stars!

PLEASE CLICK TO TWEET

My fav quotes were

‘As you get older you realise you never get away with things. The human mind has its own prisons. You don’t have a choice over everything in life.’

‘It doesn’t matter that we age differently. It doesn’t matter that there’s no way of resisting the laws of time. The time ahead of you is like the land beyond the ice. You can guess what it could be like but you can never know. All you know is the moment you’re in.’

‘But the thing is: You cannot know the future. You look at the news and it looks terrifying. But you can never be sure. That is the whole thing with the future. You don’t know. At some point you have to accept that you don’t know. You have to stop flicking ahead and just concentrate on the page you are on.’

Have you read this book?

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Love,

2018: The year of paperbacks.

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Hey book lovers! How’s it going? I hope your reading challenge is going as planned. My reading goal this year is to read 50 books. I’ve read 12 so far. I don’t think this is a promising start but as much as I want to accomplish this goal I’m putting zero pressure on myself and enjoying every book I read. I wanted to share and blog about the books I read in 2017 because I actually was able to list all 40 of them thanks to Goodreads but I was taking a short break from blogging last year December. (We are always taking breaks. We know and we apologise). Let me know in the comment section if you still want me to blog about that.

I’ve bought 11 books so far this year.

1. Men are from mars, women are from Venus – John Gray (Got this in camp)

2. Aké- Wole Soyinka (Got this at the Abuja airport)

3. Sorrow’s joy – Ogochukwu Promise (Also Got this at the Abuja airport)

4. Fine boys – Eghosa Imasuen (Ordered this from Alaroro books on IG)

5. Dear Ijeawele, or a feminist manifesto in fifteen suggestions – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (Also Got this from Alaroro books on IG) – Bought two copies and decided to give one away.

6. Strategies for securing your dream job – Francis C. DAVID (Got this in camp. They gave us a lecture on this and I decided to buy the book after the lecture)

7. Under the uduala trees – Chinelo Okparanta ( Got this at the SLAY festival I attended last weekend. There was a nice sale going on and your girl had to get on it! Shout out to Patabah books!)

8. We should all be feminists – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (I also got this at the SLAY festival)

9. It wasn’t exactly Love (Stories from the farafina trust creative writing workshop 2012)

10. Blackass -A. Igoni Barrett

11. Attitude is everything – Keith Harrell

I feel like I’m going to be spending a lot of money on books this year. So I’m taking a break for now till like April. My birthday was three weeks ago and i’ll be accepting late gifts. Thank you very much! 🙂

Have you read any of these books? Did you enjoy it?

(I’ve always been a fan of ebooks but I’m getting into paperbacks this year)

Are you a fan of ebooks?

In case you missed the review of Aké by Wole Soyinka, you can read it here.

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10 books by female authors I look forward to reading in 2018

Hey book lovers! Happy International Women’s Day!

Photo cred: Pinterest.

Hope you’re having a fulfilling day!

I was going to do a recap of the books I read in 2017 but I took a break from blogging last year December and I feel like it’s too late to share now. Anyway, I ended up reading 40 books last year. 80% of which I read in the last quarter of the year. I found a new love in Mystery and thriller novels.

I am hoping to read 50 books this year and I’ve read 8 so far. According to goodreads, I’m on track. Yay!

In the spirit of the day, I’m sharing a list of books by female authors I look forward to reading this year. In no particular order. (I’ve read one of the books on this list (An American Marriage) and it was incredible.

1. Freshwater – Akwaeke Emezi

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Blurb

An extraordinary debut novel, Freshwater explores the surreal experience of having a fractured self. It centers around a young Nigerian woman, Ada who develops separate selves within her as a result of being born ‘with one foot in the other side.’ Unsettling, heart wrenching, dark, and powerful, Freshwater is a sharp evocation of a rare way of experiencing the world, one that illuminates how we all construct our identities.

Ada begins her life in the south of Nigeria as troubled baby and a source of deep concern to her family. Her parents, Saul and saachi, successfully prayed her into existence but as she grows into a volatile and splintered child, it becomes clear that something went terribly awry. When Ada comes of age and moves to America for college, the group of selves within her grows in power and agency. A traumatic assault leads to a crystallization if her alternate selves: Asughara and Saint Vincent. As Ada fades into the background of her own mind and these selves – now protective, now hedonistic — move into control, Ada’s life spirals in a dark and dangerous direction

2. A girl like that – Tanaz Bhathena

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Blurb

Sixteen year old Zarin Wadia is many things: a bright and vivacious student, an orphan, a risk taker. She’s also the kind of girl that parents warn their kids to stay away from: a trouble maker whose many romances are the subject of endless gossip at school. You don’t want to get involved with a girl like that, they say. So how is that eighteen year old Porus Dumasia has only ever had eyes for her? And how did Zarin and Porus end up dead in a car together, crashed in the side of a highway in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia? When the religious polic arrive on the scene, everything everyone thought they knew about Zarin is questioned. And as her story is pieces together, told through multiple perspectives, it becomes clear that she was far more than just a girl like that.

This beautifully written debut novel from Tanaz Bhathena reveals a rich and wonderful new world to readers. It tackles complicated issues of race, identity, class, and religion, and paints a portrait of teenage ambition, angst, and alienation that feels both inventive and universal.

3. An American Marriage – Tayari Jones

Blurb

Newlyweds Celestial and Roy are the embodiment of both the American Dream and the New South. He is a young executive, and she is an artist on the brink of an exciting career. But as they settle into the routine of their life together, they are ripped apart by circumstances neither could have imagined. Roy is arrested and sentenced to twelve years for a crime Celestial knows he didn’t commit. Though fiercely independent, Celestial finds herself bereft and unmoored, taking comfort in Andre, her childhood friend, and best man at their wedding. As Roy’s time in prison passes, she is unable to hold on to the love that has been her center. After five years, Roy’s conviction is suddenly overturned, and he returns to Atlanta ready to resume their life together.

4. Every note played – Lisa Genova

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Blurb

From neuroscientist and New York Times bestselling author of Still Alice comes a powerful exploration of regret, forgiveness, freedom, and what it means to be alive.

An accomplished concert pianist, Richard received standing ovations from audiences all over the world in awe of his rare combination of emotional resonance and flawless technique. Every finger of his hands was a finely calibrated instrument, dancing across the keys and striking each note with exacting precision. That was eight months ago.

Richard now has ALS, and his entire right arm is paralyzed. His fingers are impotent, still, devoid of possibility. The loss of his hand feels like a death, a loss of true love, a divorce—his divorce.

He knows his left arm will go next.

Three years ago, Karina removed their framed wedding picture from the living room wall and hung a mirror there instead. But she still hasn’t moved on. Karina is paralyzed by excuses and fear, stuck in an unfulfilling life as a piano teacher, afraid to pursue the path she abandoned as a young woman, blaming Richard and their failed marriage for all of it.

When Richard becomes increasingly paralyzed and is no longer able to live on his own, Karina becomes his reluctant caretaker. As Richard’s muscles, voice, and breath fade, both he and Karina try to reconcile their past before it’s too late.

Poignant and powerful, Every Note Played is a masterful exploration of redemption and what it means to find peace inside of forgiveness

5. Educated: A memoir – Tara Westover

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Blurb

Tara Westover was seventeen the first time she set foot in a classroom. Born to survivalists in the mountains of Idaho, she prepared for the end of the world by stockpiling home-canned peaches and sleeping with her “head-for-the-hills bag.” In the summer she stewed herbs for her mother, a midwife and healer, and in the winter she salvaged in her father’s junkyard.

Her father forbade hospitals, so Tara never saw a doctor or nurse. Gashes and concussions, even burns from explosions, were all treated at home with herbalism. The family was so isolated from mainstream society that there was no one to ensure the children received an education, and no one to intervene when one of Tara’s older brothers became violent.

Then, lacking any formal education, Tara began to educate herself. She taught herself enough mathematics and grammar to be admitted to Brigham Young University, where she studied history, learning for the first time about important world events like the Holocaust and the civil rights movement. Her quest for knowledge transformed her, taking her over oceans and across continents, to Harvard and to Cambridge. Only then would she wonder if she’d traveled too far, if there was still a way home.

Educated is an account of the struggle for self-invention. It is a tale of fierce family loyalty, and of the grief that comes with severing the closest of ties. With the acute insight that distinguishes all great writers, Westover has crafted a universal coming-of-age story that gets to the heart of what an education is and what it offers: the perspective to see one’s life through new eyes, and the will to change it.

6. Happiness – Aminatta Forna

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Blurb

London. A fox makes its way across Waterloo Bridge. The distraction causes two pedestrians to collide–Jean, an American studying the habits of urban foxes, and Attila, a Ghanaian psychiatrist there to deliver a keynote speech. From this chance encounter, Aminatta Forna’s unerring powers of observation show how in the midst of the rush of a great city lie numerous moments of connection.

Attila has arrived in London with two tasks: to deliver a keynote speech on trauma, as he has done many times before; and to contact the daughter of friends, his “niece” who hasn’t called home in a while. Ama has been swept up in an immigration crackdown, and now her young son Tano is missing.

When, by chance, Attila runs into Jean again, she mobilizes the network of rubbish men she uses as volunteer fox spotters. Security guards, hotel doormen, traffic wardens–mainly West African immigrants who work the myriad streets of London–come together to help. As the search for Tano continues, a deepening friendship between Attila and Jean unfolds.

Meanwhile a consulting case causes Attila to question the impact of his own ideas on trauma, the values of the society he finds himself in, and a grief of his own. In this delicate tale of love and loss, of cruelty and kindness, Forna asks us to consider the interconnectedness of lives, our co-existence with one another and all living creatures, and the true nature of happiness.

7. Red Clocks –  Leni Zumas

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Blurb

In this ferociously imaginative novel, abortion is once again illegal in America, in-vitro fertilization is banned, and the Personhood Amendment grants rights of life, liberty, and property to every embryo. In a small Oregon fishing town, five very different women navigate these new barriers alongside age-old questions surrounding motherhood, identity, and freedom.

Ro, a single high-school teacher, is trying to have a baby on her own, while also writing a biography of Eivør, a little-known 19th-century female polar explorer. Susan is a frustrated mother of two, trapped in a crumbling marriage. Mattie is the adopted daughter of doting parents and one of Ro’s best students, who finds herself pregnant with nowhere to turn. And Gin is the gifted, forest-dwelling homeopath, or “mender,” who brings all their fates together when she’s arrested and put on trial in a frenzied modern-day witch hunt.

8. The Windfall – Diksha Basu

Blurb

For the past thirty year, Mr. and Mrs Jha’s lives have been defined by cramped spaces, cut corners, gossipy neighbors, and the small dramas of stolen yoga pants and stale marriages. They thought they’d settled comfortably into their golden years, pleased with their son’s acceptance into an American Business school. But then Mr. Nah comes into an enormous and unexpected sum of money, and moves his wife from their housing complex in East Delhi to the super- rich side of town, where he becomes eager to fit in as a man of status: skinny ties, hired guards, shoe- polishing machines, and all.

The move sets off a chain of events that rock their neighbors, their marriage, and their son, who is struggling to keep a lid on his romantic dilemmas and slipping grades, and brings unintended consequences, ultimately forcing the Jha family to reckon with what really matters.

9. Asymmetry – Lisa Halliday

Blurb

Told in three distinct and uniquely compelling sections, Asymmetry explores the imbalances that spark and sustain many of our most dramatic human relations: inequities in age, power, talent, wealth, fame, geography, and justice. The first section, “Folly,” tells the story of Alice , a young American editor and her relationship with the famous and much older writer Ezra Blazer. A tender and exquisite account of an unexpected romance that takes place in New York during the early years of the Iraq war, “Folly” also suggests an aspiring novelist’s coming of age. By contrast, “Madness” is narrated by Amat , an Iraq-American man who, on his way to visit his brother in Kurdistan, is detained by immigration officers and spends the last weekend of 2008 in a holding room in Heathrow. These two seemingly disparate stories gain resonance as their perspectives interact and overlap, with yet new implications for their relationship revealed in an unexpected coda.

A stunning debut from a rising literary star, Asymmetry is an urgent, important and truly original work that will captivate any reader while also posing arresting questions about the very nature of fiction itself.

10. The wife between us- Greer Hendricks, Sarah Pekkanen

Blurb

A novel of suspense that explores the complexities of marriage and the dangerous truths we ignore in the name of Love.

When you read this book, you will make many assumptions. You will assume you are reading about a jealous wife and her obsession with her replacement.

You will assume you are reading about a woman about to enter a new marriage with the man she loves.

You will assume the first wife was a disaster and that the husband was well rid of her.

You will assume you know the motives, the history, the anatomy of the relationships.

Assume nothing.

Discover the next blockbuster novel of suspense, and get ready for the read of your life.

Have you read any of these books? What books have you read this year and what books by female authors are you looking forward to reading? Share in the comments section! I’d love to add more books to my TBR list.

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