Friday Reads | 9th September

Just a quick Friday Reads post from me today! Here I’ll share what I plan to read this Friday and into the weekend ahead but, as we all know, I rarely follow through on reading plans once I document them here. However, I’m hoping this one sticks since I have the house all to myself this weekend and therefore absolutely zero distractions… well apart from watching Gilmore Girls of course, which is a pretty sizeable distraction in itself. I must resist!

A Feast For Crows – George R.R. Martin (x)

As I’ve mentioned countless times, I’m participating in the #readasoiaf readalong where we read a book from the A Song of Ice and Fire series every month. This month’s book is the fourth in the series – A Feast For Crows – and after the slog that was the first part of A Storm of Swords last month I’m so excited to get to this book. I’ve heard this book is very political and scheming-focused and I’m actually really looking forward to that because that element is my favourite part of the series.

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Review | A Storm of Swords by George R.R. Martin

asoscoverTitleA Storm of Swords (2000)
published as Part 1: Steel and Snow, Part 2: Blood and Gold 
Author: George R.R. Martin
Read:  Part 1: 18th July – 17th August | Part 2: 21st August – 29th August
Genre: fantasy
Rating: Part 1: 3.5 out of 5 stars | Part 2: 4.5 out of 5 stars

The third book in George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire saga, A Storm of Swords takes the feuding kings and lords of Westeros into a territory fondly know as ‘shit meets fan’ and leaves the series in grittier and darker places than ever before. All the political manoeuvring and scheming to this point, and throughout the course of this book, tips the narrative over a precipice from which it can never return, not to mention many of its principle characters.

” ‘Woman?’ She chuckled. ‘Is that meant to insult me? I would return the slap, if I took you for a man.’ “

Opening in the aftermath of the Battle of Blackwater Bay, A Storm of Swords sees a retreating Stannis Baratheon’s plans pitted against the “rightful” claim of his nephew, King Joffrey, to the throne of the Seven Kingdoms. The Young Wolf, Robb Stark, proclaimed King of the North, continues to rule over territory through a mixture of wars and alliances whose cracks truly begin to splinter and show. Meanwhile, on the edges of the picture, exiled Daenerys Targaryen makes her way across the Dothraki Sea accompanied by the remaining paltry excuse for a khalasar and her three growing dragons, heading for Slaver’s Bay and its army of slave soldiers in the hope of gathering more men behind her. And the fringe threat of the barbaric wilding army also appears, roaring, on the horizon of the Seven Kingdoms, promising terror and blood.

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#readasoiaf | Progress Update

Well, since we’re over halfway through August I thought it was high time to share my progress in the #readasoiaf readalong challenge.

readasoiafprogFor those unaware, I’ve been meaning to read George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series for years at this point and, whilst I was at university, the TV show blew up in a huge way and it seemed like I was the only one not watching it. (It’s kind of a running joke between me and one of my ex-housemates that I still haven’t “caught up” yet with the TV show, despite numerous occasions and plenty of time to do so.) Whilst I really want to watch the TV show (and I have a boxset of the first 4 seasons to get me going) I also feel like everyone ever says they will read the series at some point. I was one of those people… until I realised that if I didn’t just commit to the challenge, I would never actually get round to it. So, enter the #readasoiaf readalong, which came at the perfect time for me.

The concept is simple. Read a book a month, until October. It started back in June with Game of Thrones, then came A Clash of Kings in July, and in August we’re reading A Storm of Swords before we’ll move onto A Feast for Crows in September and A Dance with Dragons in October. Continue reading

Friday Reads | 12th August

Just a quick Friday Reads post from me today! I’m going to ambitiously share what I plan to read this Friday and into the weekend ahead but, as we all know, I rarely follow through on reading plans once I document them here. However, I am sitting pretty at 49 out of 52 books in my 2016 Reading Challenge so I think I’m doing just fine.

Which is a good thing because my reading this week thus far hasn’t been brilliant. I should probably finish up some books I am halfway through so I can get my reading down to one, or two, items, but I’m nearly always a polygamous reader so I’m sure I will be diving into all of the following books intermittently over this weekend:

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Friday Reads | 15th July

Just a quick Friday Reads post from me today where I’ll share what I plan to read this Friday and into the weekend ahead. My reading this week so far has been intermittent at best, so I hope to correct that today and into this weekend. The usual excuses apply: job hunting woes, feeling generally terrible and whiny, devoting time to watching copious episodes of Archer on Netflix instead. Actually that last one is probably the main excuse. Sorry/not sorry.

Even so, I’m still plodding my way through a re-read of A Clash of Kings for the #readasoiaf readalong in which a group of readers are reading George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series, one book per month. This month has been the turn of the second book in the series and I rather naively thought that, as this was a re-read, I might be able to fly through it. I was wrong, so very wrong, especially when I know I could technically get lazy and just skim read it since it is a re-read but I suspect I would then remember little to none of the actual plot, which wouldn’t stand me in very good stead for picking up A Storm of Swords in August. So basically I keep putting this down and forgetting about it, I claim to be actively reading it but only in the sense that I frequently bring it downstairs with me on a morning and leave it on the arm of the sofa, as though I might pick it up spontaneously. However, I recently realised just how far ahead of me Liz is with this book and, let me tell you, being behind with your reading that much makes you want to catch up. Not that this is a race in any way but I like to be drawing level. Continue reading

Friday Reads | 10th June

Just a quick Friday Reads post from me today where I’ll share what I plan to read this Friday and into the weekend ahead.


It will be no surprise to learn that I’m still working my way through A Game of Thrones (slow but steady wins the race, right?) for the #readasoiaf readalong and I plan to continue this weekend. I have to say that the colouring in circles for each chapter method really does work, I feel like I’m making progress! Actually, since we’re being optimistic, I hope to finish it this weekend but with 250ish pages left, we’ll see how it goes. 

I also have a book to read for review: Lara Williams’ Treats. It’s a short story collection (something I don’t ready nearly enough of) but it seems to be focuses around the trials and tribulations of life as an emerging adult in the twenty first century. It’s promising considering the first story starts with the person (you, as it’s addressed to) graduating university and moving back home with their parents. I know a little something of that feeling… so I hope it proves to be authentic and relatable as the blurb claims it is!

The third book I might dip into is Paul Kalanithi’s When Breath Becomes Air. I feel like this book needs no introduction since it’s been everywhere but in case you missed it so far then it’s a memoir of Paul Kalanithi who was just about to complete his neurosurgery training when he was diagnosed with lung cancer, so it’s a look into the doctor-patient relationship, and about facing up to the fact of our mortality, and what it means to live life. Or so the summary and numerous quotes of praise claim. I’m sure that will be the case.

So those are the books I will hopefully be reading today and this weekend. What are you reading at the moment? Have you any weekend plans, reading-related or otherwise? Have you read any of the books I’m planning to read – what did you think? Share below!


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#readasoiaf | Stating My Intentions

Yep, you guessed it, it’s time for ‘Emma signs up for another read-a-long despite the fact she has no sense of sticking power firm enough to last out the duration’. Otherwise known as: I need to re-read the first couple of A Song of Ice and Fire books before trying to get through the third again (I DNFed A Storm of Swords because *yawn* but deeply regret my prior laziness) so, since a readalong is happening, I might as well join in.

Because, if no one knows you failed to finish a book, you’re only disappointing yourself, but if someone else knows you’re committing to something then it makes it nigh on impossible to disappoint them. Or so I’ve heard. And that’s enough reasoning to make me think I should give the #readasoiaf readalong a go – well that and Kayla, one of the readalong hosts, made a pdf with circles for each chapter which you can colour in as you complete each. You know, to track your progress visually? It’s an excuse for colouring so that’s more than reason enough for me to jump aboard that bandwagon.

For those who are interested, there is a Goodreads group, the progress circle checklist I mentioned, and Lizlovesliterature’s announcement video which is where I first stumbled across the readalong.

File_000Basically, grab your copies of A Song of Ice and Fire and read one book per month starting next month and running until the end of October, like so:

June – A Game of Thrones
July – A Clash of Kings
August – A Storm of Swords
September – A Feast For Crows
October – A Dance With Dragons

The beauty is in it simplicity… I say ‘simplicity’, the books are anything but simple but hey, I like a readalong that’s low-key in its challenges, if not in its expectations of how many pages I’ll end up reading if I finish it.

We’ll see how long I stick with this one for.


Please do comment below if you’re planning on participating with the readalong or might be interested in dipping in and out here and there, maybe to read your favourite book of the series? Or, if you’ve read the series, let me know how you find the reading experience. (Back when I read the first two books last year I found myself pleasantly surprised by how quickly I could get through them, once I got into the storylines. I’m curious to know if this continues throughout the series!) Any more thoughts/comments/queries? Leave ’em below!


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