Still Reading and Much More

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It has been awhile since I blogged. I have felt fine, guilty, wasteful, disloyal and then fine again for not needing to blog. Yet today as I received another reminder to pay for my blog domain, and yes finally decided to pay it, I feel moved to blog a little.

 

I am doing fine, my OCD is still with me but perhaps less rampant. I still have my perfected avenues of avoidance, but I also have the ability and will to talk myself off an emotional ledge when required.

 

I am not dependant, nor do I find it necessary, to share how I feel with others often and I am accustomed to safeguarding myself. I take no medication for my mental illness anymore and am currently receiving no formal therapy. I will review this with a professional in June to see if this is still advisable.

 

Most days I am fine, but there are days, as we all know when interractions with others or incidences, can rock the boat and in those situations I find I need support but less so and not for too long.

 

For example, recently I wrote a five star review for a book I had finished reading and usually after doing so I am met with either an expected silence from the author or a friendly and appreciated thanks (not compulsory, my social awkwardness prefers the silence), however on this occasion I turned to social media to find the author had complained about me to an admin on a Facebook book group alledgedly accusing me of giving away a spoiler. Something I have in my over 1500 books read and reviewed, never done. I disagreed, at most I had said a main character (not named) had died and in the crime thriller genre thats hardly news, but removed the post and reposted how much I enjoyed her book and apologised for the alledged spoiler anyway.

 

It is fair to say the incident stuck in my craw and I will think twice before interracting with or reading another from the author in question, who was on my Facebook friendlist at the time of her complaint, I have since removed her.  I don’t need this sort of negative interaction.

 

Drastic? Possibly. I blocked her too. Why? Because she has contacted me and interracted with me on numerous occasions on social media when she asked me to read or review yet in this case she made a complaint to a third party, who incidently is a good friend of mine, rather than using other less inflammatory channels to get her point across, hence losing a fan and a reader.

 

In the past I would be upset, possibly tearful and lamenting all of humanity and smoldering over this for days if not weeks, but today I remain resolute that I did nothing wrong and I don’t know what this individual is going through, however, I do have my own issues and there are plenty of other books to be read so I choose to no longer risk being at the mercy of someone elses’ ire or opinion of what constitues a damaging spoiler. I make no apologies for my reaction and actions I subsequently took.

 

That is progress in adversity for me and I am fine with that. Others may have handled it differently, may disagree with the whole spoiler question and be subsequently more laid back about the whole interraction, but I am me and this is what I do. I am no longer second guessing myself.

 

 

Reading Challenge 2017

After taking a 6 week break from reading over summer 2017, I still racked up 351 books in my Goodreads Challenge for for the year.

I found myself starting last year very slowly as my interest in reading psychological and crime thrillers seriously dwindled. I changed predominant genre to romance after summer and my reading mojo reinstated itself.

I exceeded my goal of reading 190 books in Autumn and read over 300 books for the first time ever.

OCD Status

It’s been a while since I wrote about mental health, or more specifically, my mental health. I left group therapy at the end of November this year. It felt like time since early summer and after putting in a lot of thought and reflecting on where I stood in my biannual review with the group I set my mind to leaving.

The last week or so I have been undergoing, what I now realise, is a process of leaving that is pretty much part and parcel of the therapy I have had. I have been down, volatile, self-doubting but I have also felt lighter, self-aware and stronger. I appreciate my personal journey with OCD has not concluded and I may require more therapy in future but I am no longer taking any antidepressant or anti-anxiety medications and I feel in tune with my mental health needs.

It seems 2018 will be a very different kind of year for me in a lot of ways but I don’t regret the journey I took with psychodynamic group therapy and I am so thankful for sharing that journey with everyone who was part of it. My relatively active social life is part of me I reclaimed through therapy and will no doubt be a portal of continuing to be a happier me.

#Bookreview Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman #Netgalley #literaryfiction

Eleanor Oliphant is thirty years old and lives alone. With no friends and family around her and a difficult past she keeps under wraps, she is also rather prickly and judgemental. When she meets new IT help, Raymond, at her place of work the two strike up a rather unlikely friendship which leads to Eleanor questioning her ideas and opinions and giving her a glimpse of a normality she never had.

This really was a beautiful story of friendship and self-discovery. It was undoubtedly hard to read at times and I really became invested in Eleanor and Raymond as I devoured this book in one sitting.

Like many fans of this novel I felt bereft when I came to the end and would love to read more about Eleanor navigating life which seems to befuddle us all in differing degrees from time to time. Please say there will be a sequel!

Links To Book:

Amazon UK

Amazon US

Goodreads

#Bookreview Broken Bones (DI Kim Stone Book 7) by Angela Marsons #crime #thriller

The seventh book in this long running police procedural crime fiction series sees Kim left holding a baby on Christmas night and the team being called out to investigate the murder of a prostitute. It has been a while since I read the previous books in the series and I embarked on this novel with the recollection of the main characters, namely Kim and her team, but found I was at no disadvantage if I hadn’t read the previous books in the series when it came to enjoying this one.

Stacy and Kevin are assigned to find the parents of the abandoned baby, which leads them to a factory of Romanian workers. After finding no clues but gut feeling something isn’t right with the set up of the employees at the factory they follow their hunches unearthing seemingly unrelated illegal immigrant activity in the area, but when another body turns up things get more urgent.

Kim and Bryant’s investigation leads them to Kai Lord, a gang leader who is known to run a prostitution ring they cannot crack. Kai is so well covered his operation seems beyond their reach but when more deaths seem tied to the original Kim is not about to let matters slide.

Dealing with difficult themes such as grooming, prostitution, slavery and people trafficking this is another compelling read in the series and as always I find Kim Stone a valiant protagonist. Looking forward to the next one already.

Links To Book:

Amazon UK

Amazon US

Goodreads

Advance #bookreview Right Here Right Now by Georgia Beers #romance #fiction #LBGT #Netgalley

Lacey likes to have her life in a familiar routine, which is disturbed when a new company moves into neighbouring office space. When she meets Alicia there is instant attraction for them both but as they get to know each other hurdles crop up until the biggest hurdle from Alicia’s past threatens any future they could have together.

A slow burn get to know the characters romance that was easy to read and intrigued me to find find out what happens to our two protagonists. I’m not a regular reader of LBGT/lesbian romance but I did enjoy reading this romance novel.

This book will be available to buy from Amazon from 12th December 2017

Links To Book:

Amazon UK

Amazon US

Goodreads

#Bookreview The Alphabet Sisters by Monica McInerney #contemporary #romance #fiction #Tuesdaybookblog

A huge fight between three sisters results in them not talking to one another for three years, but matriarch, Lola, their grandmother decides enough is enough and summons all three to attend her eightieth birthday celebrations. Much awkwardness ensues as the fight started because the youngest sister, Carrie, married middle sister, Bett’s fiancé. However, all three sisters and grandmother Lola are keeping secrets of their own.

A far gentler read than I’m used to, this moderately paced contemporary romance gradually hooked me on the central characters and before I knew it I was totally invested. The author drew forward laughter and tears, but more tears than laughter from me, as I am a tough audience when it comes to humour in books. I absolutely loved eccentric Lola in this book and my bias of other characters in the book was coloured by Lola’s point of view.

Not a typical read for me but I enjoyed this contemporary romance set in Australia nonetheless.

Links To Book:

Amazon UK

Amazon US

Goodreads

#Bookreview The Truth and Lies of Ella Black by Emily Barr #contemporary #fiction #mystery #Netgalley

I wasn’t sure where this book was headed as the original description did not prepare me for the strange rollercoaster ride this story embarked on.

Seventeen year old Ella Black is not very popular in school has two friends, Jack and Lily, and overprotective parents. In addition to this she has a psychological alter ego she calls Bella (Bad Ella) who surfaces from time to time making Ella do abhorrent things she cannot control. One day whilst at school Ella’s mother shows up and takes her out. The next thing Ella knows is she is headed to Heathrow and boards a plane to Rio. Once in Rio a dark family secret, eventually, is uncovered and Ella finds herself unable to be around her parents who kept it from her.

I would say this is probably the most unusual story I have inadvertently picked up this yet and after finishing it, I’m still not sure how I feel about this book. I found Ella a difficult protagonist to connect with and the plot was not easy to buy into, apart from that it was well written and I did finish it.

Links To Book:

Amazon UK

Amazon US

Goodreads

#Bookreview Final Girls by Riley Sager #horror #thriller #Netgalley

Quincy Carpenter is the sole survivor of a killing spree that took place ten years ago at Pine Cottage. The press have dubbed her A Final Girl putting her in an exclusive group of three girls who have survived similar ordeals. However, when one of the girls is found dead Quincy is shaken, however her world starts to unravel when the third shows up.

This story is told from Quincy’s point of view in the present with flash backs to ten years ago told in the third person. It seems increasingly likely that Quincy is an unreliable narrator the more you get into the story but all my hunches and predictions fell by the wayside as I read this intriguing thriller.

A definite page turner that will give you goosebumps once you overlook the premise that there are only three female sole survivors of crimes of this nature, who could be dubbed Final Girls in a continent as large as the USA.

Links To Book: 

Amazon UK

Amazon US

Goodreads

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