It’s not often that I’ve read enough books or watched enough TV to be able to write one of these posts, but August’s been pretty kind to me this year and has given me a nice handful of much needed downtime to get lost in a good book or three! So as there’ve been a few different things that I’ve been enjoying this month, I felt I needed to share them and what better way to do that than in a little blogpost.
First up has got to be The Handmaid’s Tale. I’m sure you’ve heard a lot about this one as it was all anyone was talking about at one point but this really did have me hooked. Based on the book by Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid’s Tale is set in a dystopian world where fertility is rare and those women fortunate enough to have children are seen as property of the state, being forced to be both surrogates and slaves for society’s wealthiest. The series focuses largely on the character Ofred and her struggle to escape the world she’s been forced to serve in. Eerie, touching and a little shocking in parts, this is definitely one to obsess over with a cup of tea as the nights are getting darker.
This one’ a little random but brilliant nonetheless! I blitzed Designated Survivor in a matter of two weeks after perusing Netflix for something to binge on to get over my post holiday blues. In summary, the series follows Tom Kirkman, a lower level cabinet member who one night, having been fired by the President the same morning, sees his position as designated survivor throw him into the role of the President of the United States after the Capitol is bombed. With the rest of the party dead, Kirkman has to not only lead the country but get to the bottom of who is to blame for the bombing. An unlikely candidate at first, Kirkman proves he is more than capable of running the country and it’s difficult not to love him as the series goes on. A must watch, especially if you’re a 24 fan.
Last but certainly not least is Trust Me, a 4 part drama brought by the BBC. Call me old, but I bloody love a BBC drama! If you were a fan of Dr Foster or Broadchurch, this one will be right up your street. Cathy is a nurse working in Sheffield who, always having stood up for what’s right, has found herself being let go for doing the right thing. When her friend, Doctor Ali Sutton, leaves for New Zealand, Cathy decides to steal her friend’s identity and gets a job as a doctor in a hospital in Edinburgh. Starting again where nobody knows her, will she be able to convince everyone that she is who she says she is?
Having read a lot of crime thrillers recently, I was looking for something different to take with me to read on holiday this month so I picked up The Underground Railroad (Colson Whitehead) hoping for a bit of adventure. Telling the tale of slavery in the American Deep South, we follow Cora, an orphan slave who knows nothing else but the life on a cotton plantation in Georgia. When Ceaser, a new arrival amongst the slaves, approaches her one day and tells her of his plans of escape in hunt of the Underground Railroad, Cora decides it’s an opportunity she can’t turn down. Suffering loss and pain along the way, this is a heartbreaking tale which gives you a real insight into the awful truths of slavery.
Blitzing this book in only two days, Blood Sisters (Jane Corry) has definitely been my favourite read this year. Following two sisters, Kitty and Alison, the book tells the thrilling tale of the siblings hatred for one another, and the lies they are living with following on from an accident that happened twenty years earlier. As they discover they are both being watched by someone from their past, we see them slowly unite to protect one another despite their differences. The chapters alternate between the lives of the sisters for the most part of the book which really keeps you on the edge of your seat (or sofa!)
Ruby Wax’s Frazzled is a book that I’ve had for a while now and after reading it on and off for a couple of months, I’ve just reached the end of it. I don’t want to say too much about it as I’m thinking of doing a whole post about it but in short Ruby talks about the mental struggles she’s had over the years and shows how mindfulness has helped her to avoid feeling burnt out, or as she describes ‘frazzled’. Compared to all of the heavy stuff there is out on the market, Ruby manages to make the subject of mental health lighthearted and funny. I definitely had some laugh out loud moments while reading this one!
When I first started this little blog, I was pretty clueless and had no idea of the effort that bloggers put in behind the scenes in order to engage an audience. One of the biggest things I’ve learnt so far is the power of social media.. which to be quite honest I’ve always been pretty rubbish at. Over the last few weeks though I’ve really been trying to put my energy into growing my Instagram account, but without much luck. Since listening to the podcast Hashtag Authentic recently, I’ve picked up loads of great tips and I’ve noticed that my following has slowly started to build. If you’re a new blogger or a small business owner trying to build up a following, I’d definitely recommend having a listen to this one!
I heard everyone talking about The Life Changing Magic of Not Giving a F*ck a few months ago but ignored the hype at the time. As Audible offered me a free book this month, I decided to give the audio version a go. This was such a good listen and Sarak Knight really puts in to perspective what you should and shouldn’t be spending your time caring about. She even includes exercises in the book to help you build your own f*ck budget and decide how best you want to spend your limited amount of f*cks. When I’ve finished mine I’ll do a little post on here!
What have you been enjoying lately? Any good book recommendations?