A – Z of book blogging from mylittlebookblog!

Happy Sunday readers, I’ve had a wonderfully busy weekend and I’m snuggled up on the sofa watching The Big Painting Challenge and I thought I’d bring you something a little different. It’s an A-Z of all things book blogging.


A is for assortment: I am a true believer in variety in blogging, especially book blogging. Different genres, publishers and authors amongst others help to bring mylittlebookblog to as many readers as possible.  This also includes different posts including quotes, images, guest posts, Q+A’s etc.

B is for bed: My favourite place to read is snuggled up in bed, with a hot chocolate, lots of blankets and pyjamas. I also favour the bath but the number of times my books get destroyed through my clumsy nature it’s better to stick to the latter

C is for classics: Recently I have got over my irrational dislike of classic literature and thrown myself straight in at the deep end reading as much as a I can get my hands on. So far it’s been rather eye opening

D is for Doyle: As a young reader, Arthur Conan Doyle was pivotal to the increase of my interest and love of reading. The adventures of Sherlock Holmes mean a lot to me sentimentally as a reader

E is for Email: My most useful tool in contact and communicating with authors, readers, bloggers and publishers. Setting up a separate email was a big step for me in my journey as a blogger and set this apart as being more than a hobby for the weekends

F is for Folded over Corners: I have a terrible habit of folding over the corners of pages when reading. I’m constantly losing bookmarks so often train or bus tickets are my go to. I try not too but it’s a habit I seem to have got into!


G is for Guest Posts: Some people are terribly against guest posts, I’m all for it if done well and if it helps both blogs/authors/publishers reader base. Don’t just do for the sake of it I guess

H is for Hard Work: I know I’ve mentioned this before a couple of times but blogging is sometimes hard work. It doesn’t mean that it’s not worth it, not at all, but there is so much more that goes into blogging than just reading and reviewing.  

I is for Ink: When writing reviews I tend to tap them out on my old and tired red Dell ‘brick’ laptop. If I have time I like to plot out the review on paper and then type it up from there. It’s sometimes lovely to pen the words out first, to see how the review fits together

J is for Jigsaw: Book blogging is on the whole a little like a jigsaw. I am continually playing with the pieces finding different ways to put the different types of post together. Does this guest post work well next to this review, does this quote fit with the blog as a whole, will this review create some controversy? It’s a constant challenge!

L is for Lengthy journeys: The perfect time to get a chunk of reading completed. I love reading on the train down to Milton Keynes; it’s my time to de-stress from a busy week and get myself completely immersed in another world

M is for Messy: When I’m blogging I like to be fully submersed in what I’m doing. Books will be strewn around me, the notes on the book sitting in little piles, post-it notes stuck in the books, different pens in different colours pooling round me; for me it just helps the creative process.


N is for New Authors: There is nothing better than discovering a new exciting author with bags of potential and then going out and purchasing everything they’ve written and devouring it.

O is for Organisation: Despite saying I like to be messy, I am going to be a little bit of a hypocrite. Book blogging in terms of planning needs to be organised; emails need to be answers, posts written to fit with deadlines of releases, or cover reveals.

P is for Proof reading: I am terrible for this, because I’m often half asleep or in a rush when I post my reviews so there are sometimes grammatical errors (my spelling is normally pretty good.) It’s so important to proof read posts to get the message across coherently

Q is for Quality: Consistent quality across the board in terms of posts is really important. Each review is unique and to let the ball drop is a constant fear for me as a blogger.

R is for Review Requests: One of the best things about blogging is receiving requests for book reviews. It’s a tiresome task sometimes going through them all and picking which to read first but the elation of coming home and seeing the books sat by the front door is such a pleasure

S is for Spreading the word: Whether it’s for readers or writers, book blogging is ultimately about recounting what you’ve read good or bad. It’s one to always remember when blogging because once you’ve said it, it’s very difficult to take it back


T is for Tired Eyes: Even now at twenty one, and knowing my tiredness limit I still cannot resist the temptation of staying up all night to finish a good book

U is for Unbiased: This goes without saying; honesty must be followed to the T.

V is for vocabulary: Wonderful, vivid, chilling, distressing, worrying, content, ardent, notable, dire, splendid, unquestionable, thrilling, astounding, wretched, poignant, clement, blissful, sulky, gritty. Make sure you colour your book blogging with adjectives of every sound.

 W is for Well-wishers: I kept running out of letters and quite quickly had to start using the thesaurus. Blogging is all about community feel and although some claim that blogging can be lonely I am yet to feel that way. Since I started the support has been wonderful and the people I come into contact with have been lovely lovely people.

X is for Xanthippe: Now stick with me, this is a word. It actually means ill-tempered woman. Now obviously this isn’t pivotal but I think what is, is that you want to make everything as real and as brilliant as possible. If I can’t get the right feel to a review, or the post doesn’t sit well with the blog it only goes to show (male or female) that it really means something to you

Y is for Yearning: The constant and unending search for new incredibly books written by even more incredibly authors

Z is for Zero: The amount of time I wish that I wasn’t, reading, writing, blogging or making notes about books. Books just are everything to me


So there you go, a little book-ish post about book blogging. If you have any comments, questions or queries as always pop them in the comments box!

Piano from a 4th storey window: Jenny Morton Potts

Good evening readers, hope you’re all well unlike me, a little sick bunny. It seems I have caught a tummy bug which left me rendered completely useless yesterday. After being rudely awakened by my housemate, I heaved myself out of bed to go and purchase whatever it was she was complaining about. Hauling a sick ridden body out of bed dressing it in patterned black, red and white leggings, an orange t-shirt and a pair of blue fabric pumps and a massive coat with a fur hood I must have looked comical. I cannot wait to move away from the drama of where I live. Before I get too off topic there are a number of reviews that were supposed to be posted days ago but I’ve been so sick I haven’t had any time to sort them and amongst packing for the move last week. I’m hoping to get them written up ASAP so if you’re waiting for a review it’s on its way I promise. So, without further delay onto today’s review.

Lawrence Fyre and Marin Strang aren’t like other people. He is the eccentric owner of failing Sargasso Books in the Brighton Lanes. She is an ex-Jehovah’s Witness and isolated Spanish teacher. If they live together in his illegal, beautiful, rope laddered lock-up; can their love overcome their losses?  Original, sexy, very funny and deeply moving. An author in complete control of a number of unforgettable characters and emotional highs and lows, Jenny Morton Potts leaves the reader breathless, and wanting more.

So as the blurb suggests Marin Strang is a Spanish teacher whose life hasn’t quite gone the way she wanted it to; having to live on a wage from numerous temporary teaching contracts and coming out of a rather painful breakup she’s in a bit of a sticking point; in limbo as to what she should do next. An ex-Jehovah’s witness but with ties to her father who remains a loyal member, Marin finds her days wandering The Lanes in Brighton a shopping spot and ends up in the a café named Number 8. Here she meets Lawrence Fyre, the owner of the (failing) store Sargasso Books. The two, after a number of chance meetings enter into an intense relationship but a number of hiccups including his sister and the intriguing Nina could force their relationship to fail. Will their relationship rise or flounder? You’ll have to get hold of a copy to find out!

So, there’s the book in a nutshell; now you could be forgiven for thinking that this is a rather stereotypical boy meets girl style plot-line but it’s more than that. Firstly I have to commend the author for getting the feel of Brighton down so very well. I could feel the blustery wind and see the cobbled lanes full of brightly painted houses, it’s incredibly evocative of the little seaside town. The writing style is wonderful although a little difficult to get into to start with. It reads almost like a stream of consciousness, which we don’t experience all too often as a reader and when mixed with dialogue and narrative it was a little different at the start. However as you get more stuck in the words rise and fall in a very smooth almost lyrical prose which I thoroughly enjoyed.

In terms of plot line it is the perfect mix of both tragedy and love story and the whirlwind mix throughout is both tender and comedic. The two main characters are wonderfully written both quirky in their own rights but written with a real feel of human warmth and understanding. They come alive with each other and the conviction of their relationship is maddeningly exciting and euphoric. The pace is fast and forward thinking, it ricochets off with such breath taking speed that I found myself reading chapter after chapter without noticing.

I think what makes this book is the style; it is a unique and unforgettable writing quality that is both quirky and gripping. It also allows for the highs and the lows of the novel to really come alive and punch the reader in the jaw which is exactly what I wanted from this novel. It is a love story but it also intertwines personal growth, the pressure to conform to society or religion and trust in the relationships we have. It really made me sit up and listen and made me think about my own place in the world that I find myself in.  Overall a stylish and quirky read that was a wonderful mix; thoroughly enjoyable.


A lovely little book market in London


“If you take a book with you on a journey,” Mo had said when he put the first one in her box, “an odd thing happens: The book begins collecting your memories. And forever after you have only to open that book to be back where you first read it. It will all come into your mind with the very first words: the sights you saw in that place, what it smelled like, the ice cream you ate while you were reading it… yes, books are like flypaper—memories cling to the printed page better than anything else.”
Cornelia Funke, Inkheart

The Chocolate Run: Dorothy Koomson

Good afternoon readers, hope you’re all having a wonderful Thursday. The weekend is finally in sight after another busy week at work. I’ve got some exciting bits to bring you in the next few weeks and a plethora of new books spilled into my inbox yesterday so lots of reading to do. I have, however, had a little bit of a wobble with my reading in the past week. I’ve been the busiest I’ve been in months, and with my little sister having to go into A&E yesterday and today and a rather stressful evening last night I’ve had no time to think let alone read. However, I thought I would bring you today one of my all-time favourite books. It’s one I go back to time and time again and whenever I’m suffering from a book hangover or just need something to spark my interest I go back to this time. My copy is battered and bruised through the sheer number of times I’ve read it but I fancied finally giving it the review it deserves; enjoy.

 Amber Salpone doesn’t mean to keep ending up in bed with her friend Greg Walterson, but she can’t help herself. And every time it ‘just happens’ their secret affair moves closer to being a real relationship, which is a big problem when he’s a womaniser and she’s a commitment-phobe. While Amber struggles to accept her new feelings for Greg, she also realises that her closeness to Jen, her best friend, is slipping away and the two of them are becoming virtual strangers. Slowly but surely, as the stark truths of all their lives are revealed, Amber has to confront the fact that chocolate can’t cure everything and sometimes running away isn’t an option. The Chocolate Run is a delectable tale of lust, love and chocolate

 The reason I have yet to review this book is that I’m worried about not getting across how wonderful it is so I’m going to try my best. The book ultimately revolves around four characters; Jen, Matt, Amber and Greg. See, Jen and Amber have been friends since before they can remember and when Jen invites her to meet the new man in her life he brings along the rather wonderful Greg. Greg is utterly beautiful but Amber quickly works out he really knows it. They strike up a strong friendship like two peas in a pod. However they end up tumbling into bed together; Amber is hiding her commitment issues relating to her parents’ divorce as a child and Greg is a fully-certified slut. He’s a womaniser who cannot help himself. Mix in Jen who will do anything to keep the two apart and Matt who is a mysterious and quiet character it looks like it’s all going to end in tears? Or will it?

 So now that bit is done onto the good bits; I find it really difficult reviewing books I absolutely love but here I could go on for days with why I loved this story so goddamn much. The characters are wonderfully written. Amber is a regular girl. She eats chocolate for breakfast and loves binge watching films. Both sarcastic, witty and also a little insecure she’s a real character and I adore her. Greg is a flirt but he is adorably sweet and his affection for Amber comes in the bucket load. Throughout we see them grow; Amber learns to let people in whilst Greg begins to yearn to settle down. Jen and Matt are equally well described; she’s bubbly and excitable but she hides a serious jealousy complex, Matt is your typical bloke but he’s quiet and difficult to warm to.

 The story weaves well, plotting a number of different story lines including the hiding of the burgeoning relationship between Amber and Greg, the splitting of the friendship between Jen and Amber, the secrets that Greg is holding for Matt they all weave and bob along giving us more and more information until we hit the final climax of the story. The book moves with pace and dexterity so that it’s always throwing more at us. It moves forwards and backwards in time at places to allow an interesting development of Amber and Greg’s relationship. I’ve just thought I bet you’re wondering about the chocolate part of the book; well Amber loves chocolate and the theme of it is woven throughout. A lot of the book is focused on dependency and Amber, when struggling with something ultimately depends on chocolate. Throughout it plays a large part in symbolising Amber’s need to let go and allow herself to trust someone. She constantly thinks that Greg is going to up and leave and this constant toying with the idea of trusting him is written beautifully.

 In terms of writing style throughout, it is also absolutely beautiful; for example. Our friendship was getting more and more tenuous. Etheral. We weren’t even like two Twix, seperated before consumption, any more. We were more like Dairy Milk and Caramel. Two chocolates made by the same people, but so different you couldn’t put them together under any similar category. …We melted at different temperatures, we felt different, we tasted different, we were different. Now, nothing but our source linked us. Just brilliant. In one of my favourite scenes in the book she describes the four of them as different types of chocolate and as we meet more supporting this is continued. It’s a rather delightful and wonderful additional theme for the book to take.

In all honesty I adore this book and I don’t say that very often. It’s one that if you did ask me my top ten this would be the chick-lit that makes it and I haven’t read anything that comes as close. I think it’s because there is so much in there to be explored. The friendships, the secrets, the dependency on others and the constant use of chocolate there’s just something incredibly special about this book and I for one cannot wait to read it again.


Musing Mondays


Happy Monday readers; yes it’s that time of the week again  where we drag our aching bones from warm beds and hazily stumble into the daily grind of work once again. It’s only the 9th of March and I’m having a pretty productive month already. I’ve overhauled my theme and working on some new graphics and already I think it’s so much fresher, brighter and cleaner. I’ve also managed (somehow) to review five books this month with two being classics and one purple flower has finally sprung from my purple hyacinth and it is beautiful. To get us through another Monday, I have a little musing for you, a meme by the wonderful Jenn at A Daily Rhythm 

This musing comes from the line ‘I’m currently reading.’ If you’re a regular reader of MLBB you will know I’m currently completing a challenge to read ten classic books. Now I’ve started it, it seems like such a small number to read because so far each that I have read has shown me something new. You can see the reviews so far on my 101 things in 1001 days page  and this week there will be a review of the book I’m currently reading; ‘Factotum by Charles Bukowski.’ I’m only a third or so in but already it’s pulling all the right strings. It’s blunt, brutal whilst also sharp and snappy. It’s also plunging through the plot pace wise with no abandon. I picked it up because the blurb quoted,

‘Not since George Orwell has the condition of being down-and-out been so well recorded: The New York Times.’

Now I loved George Orwell’s book ‘Down and Out in Paris and in London,’ and so with this book being described in this way I couldn’t help myself but take this one out too. Since I started the challenge I’ve been inundated with suggestions of books that will intrigue and interest me. Only last week my dear friend Otis came round and we sat up until just before 1am talking about classic literature and eating my Grandmother’s shortbread. My parents who have always encouraged my love of reading have also suggested books and we have spent a great deal of time discussing classic authors and their books.

Additionally on entering the library this week, one of the librarians took me aside and told me that the library has a vast number of classics that are kept away because there just isn’t space for them on the shelves. Seeing me perusing the shelf ‘named classics,’ he told me to let him know if there were any I wanted but couldn’t see because he would go down and personally find them for me. I’ve been missing out all this time on some exceptional books because a small fraction of classic literature had left me cold and cynical. I think this 101 things challenge has been the most eye-opening so far and I cannot wait to get stuck into more even when the challenge has been completed.