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Saturday, 25 January 2020

Christmas Book Haul

When I was asked what I wanted for Christmas, it was to no surprise that books were near the top of my list. I was lucky enough to be gifted a few of the books off my list, as well as a surprise, and I thought I'd share them with you today.

Top of my list were a couple of different versions of Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale. I've loved this dystopian novel since studying it at sixth form college, and I reread it this year in anticipation for the release of the sequel The Testaments. I annotated my original copy during my reread, so wanted a fresh, fancy hardback version to add to my book shelves. This hardback version of The Handmaid's Tale is stunning, and very in keeping with the hardback of The Testaments. The end pages are stunning, and I love the simplicity of the cover. This looks stunning on my bookshelf and I love it.
As well as the gorgeous hardcover for The Handmaid's Tale, I also received the graphic novel adaptation. This is a stunning book, with such detailed illustrations. I've started reading a few more graphic novels and comics, so thought that this would be a great addition to my shelves. I feel like The Handmaid's Tale will be a book I would like to revisit again and again, and having the opportunity to read the graphic novel might be the one I reach for on my next visit to Gilead.
For those of you who aren't sure, The Handmaid's Tale tells the story of Offred, who is a Handmaid in the controlling Republic of Gilead. Her one job is to provide the elite families of the Republic with children, as many women have now become infertile. She becomes something of a possession to the families she works for, but she is trying to resist, along with others secretly fighting against the regime.

Next up was a surprise gift - The Vanished Bride by Bella Ellis. This imagines that the famous Brontë sisters - authors Anne, Charlotte and Emily - are lady detectors. When a young woman goes missing from her home, leaving behind two children and a large pool of blood, the Brontë sisters use their well-honed imaginations and their reading expertise to try to solve the mystery. I love the Brontë sisters, with Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights being some of my favourite classics, and I love the idea of seeing the sisters working together in a different environment. I'm really looking forward to reading this!
I also received a couple of books to add to some of the collections I'm building. First up, I was gifted Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator by Roald Dahl. I'm slowly building the complete collection of Roald Dahl's children books, and this is the sequel to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I've actually never read Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator so this gives me the prime opportunity. This picks up right where the first novel leaves off, with Charlie, his family and the wacky Willy Wonka travelling in the Great Glass Elevator. The group end up in space, in the chocolate factory and visiting the President of the United States. It sounds bonkers, and I can't wait to dive in.
Time for another addition to my Puffin Classics collection. I already own four, and this year I was gifted Goodnight Mister Tom by Michelle Magorian. This tells the story of Willie Beech, who is evacuated to the countryside during the Second World War. His life so far with his cruel mother hasn't given Willie the best start in life, however he begins to flourish under the care of Tom Oakley. However, he is soon summoned back to war-torn London by his cruel mother, and Willie wonders if he will her see Mister Tom again. I really enjoy reading novels set during the Second World War, and I'm looking forward to seeing how such a harrowing time in history is addressed in children's literature.
Last up, Stephen bought me a couple of books for Christmas. In August of last year, I read The Last Wish by Andrzej Sapkowski, the first book in The Witcher series. Stephen has played The Witcher 3, and we were eagerly anticipating the Netflix series of the book series. This was a different read for me, but I really enjoyed it and wanted to continue the series. I was gifted the second short story collection, Sword of Destiny, and the first full length novel, Blood of Elves. I've started Sword of Destiny and am really enjoying seeing the adventures of Geralt of Rivia, the Witcher. We devoured the show (so good!) and I think if you've enjoyed the Netflix show, definitely give the book series a go.

These are the seven books that I received for Christmas this year and I'm so grateful. Did you receive any books for Christmas? I'd love to know!

Love Lexie

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