Book Review: Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Rating: 2.5 out of 5.

Mexican Gothic is a refreshing breed of horror novel, written by a Latinx author and set in 1950s Mexico – it’s recent rise onto the NYT bestseller list proves that there is a market for a wide breadth of fiction from Latinx authors. I adored the concept behind this and all the promise it brought of a mesmerising addition to the horror world.

Mexican Gothic inhabits an odd world both on and off the page. There is no denying that the writing is a singular achievement, it manages to pay homage to the gothic novels it so often refers to while remaining more so accessible to a modern audience. It perfectly and unapologetically captures gorgeous swathes of culture, you cannot divorce this novel from it’s author and it’s setting – and it’s all the better for it. I really do love the literary finesse Garcia manages to execute in this novel, the only critique I have regarding the writing itself is that it often feels as though we’re stuck at surface level with Noemí. In spite of all the background given to her, it often felt like we were watching through a window rather than being truly immersed. Having said that, I did like Noemí as a character – she never changes in the face of her adversity, nor society.

The pacing is balanced on the head of a pin, the unfolding of events bearing on tedium ever so slightly. While I can appreciate the craft, the reading experience for the first half of the book was a neutral experience – it wasn’t by any means bad. However, this build up – exploring the house and it’s inhabitants – failed to effectively produce the sort of tension one might expect in a horror novel. The house being such a prominent part of the novel was one of my favourite elements, I do wish that it had been better treated as a character in it’s own right. While the ending was satisfactory, the novel failed to elicit any genuine sense of urgency even during its more active scenes. Again, I can and do appreciate this novel – I think it’s a good book.

In fact, I think it’s a really good book. 

What mars what could have been a perfect book is the simple fact that for the majority of the book I wasn’t actively enjoying the book – again, it’s a tough dichotomy, I didn’t not like it either. The novel soared in its dialect, it’s character interactions – especially those between Noemí and Virgil, as well as the development of her relationship with Francis. The plot much like the writing is a testament to how well Garcia knows her craft. It’s a carefully curated mixture of otherworldly grounded by mythology.

I was provided a copy of this book for review by the publisher.

You can find more information about the book on Goodreads, or you can purchase the book from The Book Depository or your local independent bookstore!

June: A Reading Roundup

I made the decision early on in the process of starting my blog that I wasn’t going to review every book I read, I used to put that pressure on myself and it really sucks the joy out of not only reading but the blogging experience too. It also has an effect on not only how much you enjoy what you read but in my opinion, reading to review changes how you read full stop. Having said that, I do want to be able to talk about other books I’ve read in some capacity and a monthly wrap up seems to be the perfect avenue to do that. If I have reviewed any of the books I talk about, they’ll be linked via the titles!

WHERE WE GO FROM HERE by Lucas Rocha | ★★★.5

Rocha has tackled the topic of HIV amongst three young men in Brazil. It’s a novel that ultimately deals with friendship, self-introspection and what it’s like to be a young person. As I said in my review, I can’t comment as to how well done the HIV representation is. However, I will say that the balance between the informative elements of the book (i.e. medical information re: HIV) and the plot was nicely done.

AGAIN AGAIN by E. Lockhart | ★★★.5

This was a book that took me by surprise, it’s a deftly woven tale of what-ifs and could-bes. As someone who is pretty nostalgic, sometimes to a fault, this book appealed in ways I didn’t even know I wanted a book to do so. It’s a concept that is really well executed by the author. At times it reaches for greatness with some poignant ideals but overall it fell just shy of hitting the mark.

GET A LIFE, CHLOE BROWN by Talia Hibbert | ★★★★

This book is an absolute gem, equal parts funny, sweet and sexy. My cheeks hurt from smiling for a good portion of this book. If you’re looking for a romance that will just make you feel good while also being authentic and well-written, this is the book for you. I adored how unapologetically herself Chloe was, she never had to change herself in “pursuit” of her love interest. The banter between the two MCs was perfect and I adore Redford (a tattooed painter turned superintendent dealing with his own issues) – I just want to wrap him up and take him home with me.

TAKE A HINT, DANI BROWN by Talia Hibbert | ★★★★

Similarly to Chloe Brown, this book is near perfect. I spoke about this in my review but Dani Brown just has a special place in my heart because the representation in it really appeals to me. Besides, who doesn’t love a good fake-dating romp? Hibbert has this genuine way of dealing with issues such as abuse and anxiety that while she doesn’t delve too deep into them, never feels surface level.

THE HENNA WARS by Adiba Jaigirdar | ★★★

I wanted to love this book so much and I do, I really do. It is a firm favourite and a book that I will recommend to everyone. It’s a necessary and important piece of writing. There’s parts of this book that are so true to form, so unapologetically authentic that I can’t not love it. Jaigirdar manages to concisely surmise the complex feelings of POC, especially POC immigrants, in mere sentences. There’s dozens of lines in the book that I have tabbed because they do such a damn good job of conveying feelings I’ve had and I’m sure many others have had. Outside of this, the book was a little waylaid by a weak writing style. As a debut, it excites me for what’s to come from Jaigirdar.

I WISH YOU ALL THE BEST by Mason Deaver | ★★★★

This book is a little something special. It can really receive no greater accolade from me than the fact that I adored it. I want to hold this book to my chest and never let it go. When I closed the book, my heart felt full. Deaver has succeeded in writing meaningful, authentic relationships and interactions – this is notable insofar as it carries the entire novel and it’s done so well, the skill is unmistakable.

GIRL, SERPENT, THORN by Melissa Bashardoust | ★★★.5

Despite all the hype I’ve been hearing about this book, it did fall a little short. I enjoyed it as I was reading it and there was nothing glaringly wrong with it, but there were certainly some elements that could have been done a little better. Overall, the plot was convenient and predictable and I didn’t feel like enough time was spent on the sapphic relationship, even though this seemed to be a big point. However, the second half of the book was much better and had potential. I did temper this criticism in my review by saying that I think it’s really just limited by the market requirements of it’s genre.

PET by Akwaeke Emezi | ★★★★★

I urge you, with actual urgency, to go pick up a copy of this book and read it. It’s stunning, truly a gift. I feel like there’s little I can say that will accurately convey the reading experience of this book, it’s so good. Not to mention, relevant. It will be relevant now, it will be relevant six months from now and beyond that. It has fantastic representation (a trans Black MC who is selectively verbal and signs, a polyamourous relationship, a non-binary parent, a fully Black cast). I think this is one of those books that transcends age, it’s excellent at what it does and prompts much thought.

Book Review: Girl, Serpent, Thorn by Melissa Bashardoust

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Proceed with caution, there may be some mild spoilers ahead.

Girl, Serpent, Thorn is a story about a bisexual princess seeking her place in the world, set against the backdrop of lush Persian mythology and folklore.

This book falls prey to some of the limitations of being a Young Adult standalone. The plot itself isn’t strong in any sense, it’s relatively predictable for the most part and the first half of the book is disparagingly trope filled – if it wasn’t for the promise of a sapphic romance, I would have happily put the book down. While I was expecting Azad to be more than he seemed, it didn’t make up for the fact that I had to sit through 150~ pages of an instalove romance. That’s also not to say that the first half of the book was bad because of the instalove, sometimes this trope can be done well and I don’t mind it.

In this instance, it wasn’t great. Soraya acted far too naive and it was ultimately unbelievable that she wasn’t somewhat wary about a man who is in love with your story and therefore, immediately in love with you. Rather, it’s kind of creepy. In my opinion, this naivety can’t even be convincingly excused by the fact that Soraya has been locked away her entire life. In addition, there wasn’t much genuine difficulty encountered by the characters. Not only was everything predictable, there weren’t any barriers that lasted more than a few pages. There wasn’t anything that prompted authentic character development. Soraya isn’t particularly compelling as a main character, despite the effort to give her this struggle with her humanity – it never truly feels as though there are stakes. The only ‘bad’ act she does can be justified, there is no truly reprehensible deed she has to overcome, or risk losing herself to her darkest proclivities. It’s a lukewarm will-they-won’t-they that lacks depth.

The saving grace of this book truly was the Persian inspired mythology, while there was little to no actual worldbuilding, the pages were brimming with gorgeous imagery. I adored that even at the end of the book the author provided a directory of sorts of all the mythology and folklore stories which inspired particular elements of the novel. Unlike the earliest endeavour in the book, the sapphic romance was well-executed, in my opinion. Despite expecting it and knowing that there was a sapphic romance in this novel, it didn’t spoil any of the build up. The only critique I’d have is that as a result of spending such a long time on the Soraya/Azad relationship, there is a tendency to view the sapphic romance as a mere addition. I think that this novel would have performed much better with more focus on the actual romance. The parallels between Soraya and Azad reduced his impact as a “villain” – this weakened the story as there didn’t seem to be a true antagonist. While this was the point, to make him more human, it didn’t have the time or the space to explore this to the depth that it needed to be effective. That’s not to say that antagonists can’t live in the grey but in this case, the integrity of the story would have remained intact with a more traditionally “evil” villain.

In short, there was a whole ton of potential here and regardless of what it lacked, the reading experience was enjoyable. Not to mention that this book deserves to be promoted and supported, there’s little LGBTQIAP+ Persian representation in YA books and this is hopefully only one of many more to come. It’s a pleasant and atmospheric read, cloaked in the refreshing advent of a new kind of fairytale.

I was provided a copy of this book for review by the publisher.

You can find more information about the book on Goodreads, or you can purchase the book from The Book Depository or your local independent bookstore!

The Subjective Test: How I Rate Books

As a member of the book community, perhaps one of the most prevalent practices is assigning a value to a book which categorically states “this is how good I think this book is” – it’s at the heart of sites like Goodreads and fundamentally, part of reviewing a book. 

This system of how high or low you rate a book is subjective and takes many forms. It’s not something I’ll discuss in this particular post but this does lead onto a bigger discussion about paid reviews and problematic reviews. I think it also begs the question, should ratings  – especially by staples of the community – be able to be rescinded/changed after the fact? People grow and change and I know I would rate hundreds of books that I read a few years ago differently but that seems to make it a moot point if I go around changing those without acknowledging that my previous opinion was valid. Otherwise, ratings lose meaning.

A well-known accolade in the literary world lies with Kirkus and their starred reviews. A comprehensive system that allows them to review hundreds of books a month; in under 500 words they review the book. There is no change to the value, it is a single star denoting excellence. Speaking about Kirkus specifically, in an effort to be more transparent and make it easier for non-white readers to find representations of themselves in fiction – they’ve taken on a specificity regarding character’s skin colour in their reviews. All of this to say that what I think of a book will be different to what you think of a book, based on a variety of factors – there’s a flawed universality to rating systems (a one to ten like IMDb or one to five like Goodreads).

Yet, it fails to address the fact that not only will someone’s opinion on a book be subjective, so is the way they assign value. It seems to be the stance of most reputable sources that half-stars are redundant. I disagree, I utilise half-stars and it’s very much a matter of best judgement when a book doesn’t deserve the lower rating however, didn’t quite match up to the next whole number. I will not be giving separate reasoning for half-star rating because it’s pretty straightforward.

Another part of rating is that oftentimes it’s a gut decision.

Usually, once I finish a book I’ll know my initial rating pretty much off the bat. The only thing that usually changes my initial rating when it comes to a review or even just Goodreads is if upon reflection there’s something in the book (positive or negative) I hadn’t realised enough to factor in at the time.

Rating: 1 out of 5.

“It’s just bad.”

A one-star rating is the only truly bad rating, in my opinion. Anything else can usually be enjoyed despite or even in spite of it’s issues – but a one-star book is something that wasn’t redeemable in any form. I didn’t enjoy it and I don’t think there’s any positives to talk about.

Rating: 2 out of 5.

“Trash. Mostly trash.”

A two-star rating can fall into two categories. The first is a book that just wasn’t for me, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s awful but it isn’t something that I would read again. There was nothing that I particularly liked about it and I was probably pretty disinterested at times.

These traits also align with the second category, which is pretty much reserved for the trashy shelf. It’s books that just aren’t great – whether they’re badly written, have problematic elements or overtly tropey and predictable. But we love them anyway. There are several books that I love, that I would even go so far as to call favourites, that I cannot in good conscience rate any higher than two because of a multitude of reasons. 

Rating: 3 out of 5.

“I liked this one.”

There’s two schools of thought when it comes to three star ratings, there’s those who think that three star ratings are a bad thing. I think a good percentage of the people who think of three stars as ‘bad’ or ‘unworthy’ of praise tend to be authors and publishing professionals. This is by no means a generalisation, simply my observation over years of reviews.

I, of course, disagree. I think three stars is a more than amicable rating. There’s loads of books that I’ve enjoyed and given this rating which I can talk about all the time, they can often be favourites. So, what exactly denotes a three star rating? Usually, I’ll expose myself here, I have a bit of a bias towards YA contemporaries – I don’t tend to pick them up and when I do they usually rate lower than anything else I read. Most contemporaries tend to be given three star ratings. However, overall, books in this category tend to be enjoyable but lacking in how much I may have connected or related to the book.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“It’s really good. I’d recommend it!”

This is a book that I loved with my whole heart. This doesn’t mean that four-star books are perfect books, it merely means that if there is anything to be critiqued it didn’t take away from my overall reading experience. These books are usually books that I make a connection with whether it’s because the book was funny, relatable or because I was immersed in the plot.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Where art thou?”

I find five-stars probably the hardest to quantify. It truly is a gut feeling. In coming to try and verbalise how and why I rate books five stars, I had a look at my previous five-star reads and noticed a few trends. The first is that five-star reads aren’t perfect books. They don’t have to be literary masterpieces. Perhaps more than any other rating, five-star books are based on feeling, rather than literary or creative critique. You just know when a book is paramount.

These books tend to be formative in some way or another, whether that’s to my personal philosophy or to my outlook on different topics etc. I like to think that I’m not overtly critical when it comes to awarding five stars but they are quite rare – perhaps I’m not reading the right books. I re-read my five stars books quite often, there’s something to be said about re-readability. If I can read a book several times without any qualms, it’s quite brilliant.

Book Review: Take a Hint, Dani Brown by Talia Hibbert

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I need to preface this review with some pretty integral facts.

The first is that I have never been a regular romance consumer. I have never been attracted to the genre on its own, I prefer my romance to be hashed with a side of adventure. Occasionally, I’ll dip my toe into contemporaries and it reminds me that regular stories about regular people and their feelings can be good and I can enjoy it. Hence, why I decided to pick this up. I’m delighted that I gave Talia Hibbert a chance. Before this, I recently read and got much enjoyment out of Get a Life, Chloe Brown – my review for that is here, if you’re interested. I knew going into this that I already liked Hibbert’s writing style and I didn’t balk at a character driven romance novel.

I simply adored this book. That’s the one line review, the soundbite.

At points it becomes difficult to come to a final decision about a rating for a book that is so character driven, as Take a Hint, Dani Brown is – and ratings aren’t everything. Simply looking at an assigned numerical value of how good a book is doesn’t encapsulate the entire experience. I read both of Hibbert’s books in the space of twenty-four hours, something that is practically unheard of for me over the last few years.

My cheeks hurt from smiling most of the time and when I wasn’t reading this book, I was thinking about reading it. I think character-led books are often treated as inferior to other literary works. In the case of this book, I had such a good time reading it that practically nothing else mattered. I’m hesitant to try to critique the novel because I don’t want it to take away from the fact that I absolutely recommend this book.

It’s filled to the brim with characters who are larger than life and break the traditional mould of traditional romance leads. Danika Brown is a plus-size, bisexual, Black main character. Zafir Ansari is a Pakistani, Muslim love interest who has anxiety. There is priceless value in seeing parts of yourself represented so fearlessly and it’s something I must commend Hibbert for doing. She includes all this diversity seemingly effortlessly and without the angst trope – the fact that the main character is not a size 6 is never treated by herself or anyone else as anything negative. Zafir’s anxiety, in my opinion, is handled with a great deal of thought and at times, subtlety. 

That’s what really cemented this as a fast favourite; how much I personally related to both of the characters. It made the reading experience feel immeasurably better.

Hibbert has through Get a Life, Chloe Brown and now with Take a Hint, Dani Brown nailed a formula for romance with these down-to-earth, funny characters.

It may be predictable but just as Zafir reads romance novels for the happy ending, that’s what Hibbert gives us. It does feel like insta-love, or maybe it’s just because the reader has an expectation of love but it doesn’t take away from the reading experience. Hibbert made me disregard those overly critical parts of myself in favour of just enjoying the book, which is skillful of its own account. 

In summary, Take a Hint, Dani Brown is a fun, sexy romance with the perfect amount of depth. It never tries to do too much and in that regard is inherently modest. I can’t understate how much I love this book, to feel seen and accepted in the context of being loved is a task and a half – one which Hibbert knocks out of the park.

I was provided a copy of this book for review by the publisher.

You can find more information about the book on Goodreads, or you can pre-order the book from The Book Depository or your local independent bookstore!

Book Review: Again Again by E. Lockhart

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

I was quite skeptical going into this book, honestly. I didn’t enjoy or have any high praise of Lockhart’s previous novels; especially during the summer release of We Were Liars which garnered so much attention. It didn’t impress me and put Lockhart in a very average place in my mind, I wasn’t interested in reading any of her future works.

Then I read the description of Again Again and I thought I might as well give the author another chance. I’m glad I did. I fell in love – it was slow at first, then all at once.

From the offset, the concept of the novel isn’t approached the way that you might think it functions in the story based on the description. But, that’s not a bad thing. In fact, it’s the core strength of this book and what makes it as good as it is. Here’s the thing about Again Again, a lot happens in the book and a lot doesn’t happen. You’ll understand what I mean by that if you read it. I think if you go into this book trying to parse out all the storylines logically, it will most certainly take away from your experience. 

It’s exhilarating in an odd way to let go of such an attachment to chronological plot. 

This book isn’t a love story to me – at least not in the conventional sense. Yes, a great deal of the book is concerned with Adelaide and her relationship to three particular boys. But, fundamentally, the book is really about Adelaide’s relationship with herself – I think. And her relationships to other people, how she views those people and how that changes her and her actions. Adelaide has the type of characterisation that makes you feel seen and not scared; she is flawed enough and dramatised enough in a literary sense that you accept her thoughts without having to confront them yourself.

Lockhart’s greatest achievement, I think, in this novel is her writing. The craftsmanship involved in not only organically executing the elements of the story which cycle back and get a do over but in the pacing of the story itself is fantastic. The main character, Adelaide, remarks at one point in the book that she often thinks in poems. And this is so perfectly reflected in the prose of the book, it’s not a prose novel. But the sentence structure creates these well defined beats that are rhythmical, lyrical. 

You might be wondering then, why not give the book a higher rating?

I don’t have any particular qualms or criticisms about the book that really stand out. But that’s an issue the book has, as much as I love and appreciate the craftsmanship that’s gone into this book – it levels out with its content and becomes something decent, just good enough. Not memorable. I honestly had a tough time recalling anything specific about the book. But I remember the atmosphere it created and how it made me feel. Again Again captures two key things; the first is the air of potential, the bittersweet feeling that accompanies summer and romance. The second is it’s thesis on characters, through the lens of how Adelaide interacts with characters – especially with her brother and Jack in the forefront of the novel. 

The novel remains cohesive because to some extent all of the characters are cynical, it’s a deliciously complex melding of who people are and who they appear to be. I think if Adelaide had been this sad little girl while everyone around her was perfectly okay, it would have come across as fanciful and less genuine. But it doesn’t because people are complicated and portraying them as such doesn’t have to be necessarily so. It struck me several times that Lockhart managed to convey this message with simple interactions.

To conclude, Again Again makes you think about all the things you could have, would have, should have done. It’s one of those books that prompts nostalgia to breed within its pages and it manages to remain inexplicably hopeful.

I was provided a copy of this book for review by the publisher.

You can find more information about the book on Goodreads, or you can purchase the book from The Book Depository or your local independent bookstore!

Book Review: Where We Go From Here by Lucas Rocha

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

I want to start off this review by stating that Where We Go From Here is an important book and that I am so glad that it has been translated for an English audience. Where We Go From Here is a YA Contemporary novel featuring a Brazilian and LGBTQIAP+ cast. It follows three characters; Ian, Victor and Henrique who are at different stages of their lives dealing with HIV. Ian has been newly diagnosed, Victor has just found out he’s negative and Henrique has been living with HIV for three years. 

Regardless of my final impression of how I connected with this book and what I thought of it as a creative endeavour, I can’t fail to stress how much this book needs to exist – and others like it. I personally have no experience with HIV and can’t critique it on that level, so I can’t tell you if this is a good representation for those who experience and live with it. What I can say is that it gave me insight into a world commonly experienced by members of the LBGTQIAP+ community through the mechanism of YA fiction, which I’ve never seen before.

It’s ironic that I’m talking about this first because I only learned about it at the end of the book when I was reading the Acknowledgements; going into this book I knew it was by a Latinx author. What I didn’t know was that it was a translation. I don’t often enjoy reading first-person narrative(s), it’s just something I’ve never gelled with personally – I was (wrongly) surprised by not only how well-done and cohesive the translated writing was but how readable I found it to be. The only criticism I would have on this end is that despite being told from three different perspectives, I didn’t feel that the narratives were particularly distinguishable from one another. There was promise at the beginning, within the first ten pages Rocha clearly showed differences between the first two characters introduced through one specific mechanism; how they perceive the nurse. Unfortunately, I didn’t see this continue.

Where We Go From Here reads like a personal journal and I suppose in some aspects it is, it’s the inside of the character’s heads and as a result, it feels self-indulgent at times. It feels heavy-handed but that goes a long way to saying that it’s about young people – it feels like teenager’s perspectives. Let’s not be mistaken, Rocha has little real estate to work with such a complex and difficult topic and its aims have been adjusted accordingly. It’s about three boys and their relationship with each other and HIV. It doesn’t pretend to be any more.

The friendship between Ian and Gabriel felt authentic and it was a much needed base, which I was grateful for. Some of the storytelling does feel lazy, I feel like much of the substance is thrust upon conversations had with secondary characters; the best friends. It’s something that happens several times with each of the characters and this makes it feel like there’s less personal development happening outside of that dialogue.

I understand that the whole point of the first half of the novel is for Victor to be prejudiced, he’s dealing with his relationship to HIV and working through that prejudice is part of it. However, it felt odd for Victor to be so self-aware of the privilege he has of his family accepting his sexuality when for the majority of the book he’s been prejudiced against Henrique. Having said that though, his characterisation otherwise is perfectly apt. He’s immature and while it has the potential to be irritating, it really just makes sense and fits the narrative.

There’s constant, specific, height descriptions. This isn’t a critique, just an observation. Another one is the fact that this book excellently captures the atmosphere of a night out. Perhaps its withdrawal due to being in lockdown but reading through the chapters where the characters were out at a gay club felt really familiar and just true.

In summary, Where We Go From Here puts a smile on your face and paints struggles as I believe they are, folded between the pages of normality. It’s short but accomplishes what it sets out to do. Its lightheartedness at times is what allows it to do this so well in such a short amount of time. These feel like real people and real interactions. Even though it follows three people, this is really Ian’s story, in my opinion. His chapters, his family, his life is the strongest part of the book. At the end, it’s all tied together with a bow – because when you have the option, who wouldn’t give them a happy ending?

I was provided a copy of this book for review by the publisher.

You can find more information about the book on Goodreads, or your can purchase the book from The Book Depository or your local independent bookstore!

Prima Facie: the Writer

prima facie [adj] based on first impression

I, like most people I think, dislike writing introductory posts. So, deciding how to launch my blog was a bit of a challenge. I eventually came to the conclusion that I wanted to talk about what I do and what I’m planning to do with this blog.

I used to be a ‘book-blogger’ back in my teen years and drifted apart from the bookish community and my blog due to a number of factors. It was a shame because I adored running a blog and talking about books – I have wanted to re-enter the community for quite some time and constantly fire-walled myself because I felt as if I would have to justify why I was gone and why I came back. I decided to start afresh.

I have also learned several lessons from my previous stint as a blogger. From the offset, I’m not going to limit myself to talking about books. It will in all likelihood be what I talk about the majority of the time but I have other passions which are equally as present in my life that I might want to talk about now and again.

Hence the asterisk. And the book-ish.

I am currently approaching the final year of a law degree, after which time I hope to complete an LPC (Legal Practice Course) to then qualify as a solicitor in England & Wales. My areas of interest are European Law, Human Rights Law and Family Law. I find myself in a lucky position because I have a genuine love of the law and the legislative process to the point where I’m happy to pursue research in my free time – it’s fascinating to me. And, if I have a platform I don’t see why I shouldn’t share work that I’m proud of on it. Along these same lines, before I decided to pursue a career in law; I was a film student. As a teenager, it was an odd discovery to realise that my identity doesn’t have to be tied to one singular thing (books).

Much like with the law, I developed a great love of film. It’s something that I miss talking about dearly and one can’t deny the relationship of literature and film.

In short, this is all about books. Most of the time.