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It has been awhile since I made a monthly TBR post, so – here is everything I want to be reading during July!

July TBR

This month, I want to start reading the three books shown below.

 

  1. Queen of the Tearling
  2. Nyxia Unleashed
  3. House of Leaves

I also want to continue reading the two books shown below.

 

  1. The Art of Fiction
  2. Neuromancer

Stay tuned this month for my weekly reading updates, at end of the month to find out if I made it through these five!

Have you read any of these books? What did you think? Let me know in the comments below!


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I’m returning to monthly wrap ups and to be read posts, so here is my monthly wrap up for June!

June Wrap Up

In June I read TWO books:

  1. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick
  2. The Circle by Dave Eggers

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick

[review] 4* – I loved Dick’s world building and the philosophical elements considering what makes us human, how empathy controls us and a vision of the future that doesn’t feel impossible. I found it a bit slow to get into, and a little slow to finish, but overall I rated it 4 stars for an entertaining and imaginative read.

The Circle by Dave Eggers

[review] 5* – Eggers creates an interesting discussion about the use of social media and both its limitations and its dangers. I found it super interesting and thought provoking and rated it 5 stars for it’s vision of the very near future with social media assuming ultimate control of the our society operates.


During June I’ve also been reading FOUR other books:

  1. The Art of Fiction by David Lodge
  2. Player Piano by Kurt Vonnegut
  3. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
  4. Neuromancer by William Gibson

I’ll let you know what I thought of these in my July Wrap Up and their individual book review posts!

Have you read any of these books? What did you think? Let me know in the comments below!


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You may have noticed Novellique has undergone a much-needed makeover! Some areas of the site are still under construction and I hope to have them up and running in the next couple of days before I head off on holiday. Comment below what you think of the new theme!

Now, onto the post: the Novellique Weekly Reading Update returns with a rundown of everything I’ve been reading this week!

Weekly Novellique Reading Update #7

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Neuromancer by William Gibson

[Amazon] Neuromancer is another book on my cyborg reading list; the first couple of chapters felt like experiencing a third hand acid trip, but now I’m used to the new terms and concepts – and after reading Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? – I feel ready to return to reading Neuromancer.

Player Piano by Kurt Vonnegut

[Amazon] I’m only a couple of pages into this read so far and I’m finding the discussion of mechanical processes versus humans to be super interesting! I can’t wait to apply marxist and feminist readings to it with comparing how gender and class is represented.

Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

[Amazon] I’m sceptical about reading this because of the subject matter it covers, but it is on the university reading list so it will be interesting to compare my vague knowledge about it with the actual novel.

What are you reading this week? Let me know in the comments!


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WordPress apparently ate the first version I wrote of this, so here’s attempt two at writing a mix between a book haul and a general life update post.

Life Update & Book Haul!

While I’ve been gone from blogging, I’ve been working on re-establishing my Instagram, @novellique, into a theme and profile page that I like and enjoy working on.

Reading the cyborg and cyberpunk books for next semester at university has driven me towards reading more sci-fi books, including Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams and Alastair Reynold’s Revelation Space. In another Waterstones trip I also picked up a constellation notebook and a 2018/19 diary which I hope to start bullet journaling in.

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I got a polaroid camera for my birthday – it’s an Instax Mini 9 and I love it, especially for taking the occasional picture of plants and, of course, family and friends. I’ve started constructing a string of fairy lights with the best selection of pictures I’ve taken so far – I’ll be sharing it on Instagram Stories once I can find the right lighting conditions.

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If you have an Instagram account about reading, writing or blogging please drop it in the comments and I’ll give you a follow. I’m also looking at setting up a DM group for book bloggers – let me know if this is something you would be interested in!

EDIT 22/06/18: I’ve been having an issue with the editing software I’m using for my Instagram, so I’ve decided I’ll be screenshotting from my Instagram rather than embedding them in case I decide to re-edit/upload some of the pictures featured here.

Have you bought any books recently? Let me know in the comments!


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I haven’t done a monthly wrap up in what feels like forever, so here’s what I’ve been reading and posting in May.

May Wrap Up

I only managed to finish ONE book during may – this was because for the majority of May I was finishing university with exams and assessments taking up my time.

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Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

I’ll be posting a full review for Gone Girl, but a short summary: it was a super quick and interesting read that kept me interested throughout and I’ll be looking at other Flynn books in the future.

However, in May I’ve also been reading my way through SIX other books.

In terms of blog posting, in May I’ve been posting about…

What books and blogging have you been enjoying in May? Let me know in the comments!


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I don’t always review the books I study for my degree, but I have some things to say about a few of the books I’ve encountered. Dracula, in particular.

REVIEW: Dracula

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Dracula by Bram Stoker

[ amazon // goodreads ]

TITLE/COVER.

Regardless of which Dracula cover you end up with, they all feature a dark shadowy figure and, usually, the colour red. The title itself, Dracula, immediately makes it clear that this is about a vampire: everyone associated Dracula with gothic conventions and vampires. Even if you know next to nothing about the actual book, you’ve probably seen images from the various film adaptations over the years.

CHARACTERS.

The characters were infuriating, and I hated Dracula for a long time precisely because of this. It wasn’t until we began to start analysing Dracula that I read an essay arguing this was intentional: Dracula is supposed to be “anti-realistic”, the essay suggested, because this adds to the horror. The reader can see the characters are being stupid and making bad choices but are powerless to stop them. With this reflection, I can understand why the characters seem incapable of stopping their ‘vulnerable women’ from becoming vampires – Dracula is the kind of text you have to unpick to like because on a surface level, everyone is useless and none of it is believable.

PLOT.

I found it difficult to force my way from Dracula the first time around. The plot takes a long time for anything to really happen – despite this, it is still a book you need to reread to get the best experience as a lot of the newspaper clippings and diary entries don’t make sense in the larger picture until you know what is happening. It also features a giant amount of unreliability from all the characters, and characters with several name changes, so the first reading can be confusing.

THEMES & ANALYSIS.

For me, Dracula becomes interesting when we look at it from a psychoanalytical perspective. What this means is looking at how unconscious desires are explored through the medium of books: in this case, unconscious desires around hunger – both literal (eating) and metaphorical (sexual desires).

It is also super interesting to look at the various things vampirism has been used as a metaphor for across the film adaptations, ranging from discussing femininity and the unconventional ‘New Women’ of the time who were demonised and dehumanised, to discussing invaders from a foreign land (especially as immigration is still such a hot topic), to comparing vampirism to AIDS. As I talked about in my essay on Dracula, the metaphor of an actual supernatural threat for any group of people is problematic to say the least, but it reflects how society demonises specific identities – the LGBT community, women and immigrants to name just a few.

OVERALL.

I’m giving Dracula a rating of 2.5* – this isn’t to say I didn’t like it or I won’t talk about it, but had I read it on my own I wouldn’t have thought much of it at all. I think Dracula is definitely a product of its time, but the main reason I’m marking it down so harshly was due to the ending; after pages and pages discussing morals and ethics about vampires and what it means to be human, nothing… particularly happens… the great evil is supposedly defeated but we never really get told anything for definite. So, in conclusion: Dracula is interesting, may even fun, to analyse – but not great to read.

Have you read Dracula – what did you think? Are there any books you’ve found interesting to analyse but don’t personally like? Let me know in the comments!


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The first year of studying English Literature at University has eaten into my motivation and time for writing blog posts. In this post I’ll be talking a bit about what I’m going to do to get back into blogging and hopefully establishing a routine I can carry into second year.

Getting Back Into It

In order to replenish my blogging motivation, I am going to:

  • Write blog posts in the morning, format them in the evening.
  • Spend less time scrolling endlessly through Facebook and more time planning out blog posts.
  • Return to my scheduling of a review or blog post at least once a week, on a Saturday.
  • Spend more time reading, but not as a chore.
  • Write more about my experience of university.
  • Commenting on at least one post a week (although preferably many more than this)
  • Write about my creative writing and how I’m progressing.
  • Start exploring my book Instagram – something I say at least once a week, but have yet to manage. I’m going to start this by wiping the old posts on that account (they’ll be safe in my archive) and finding the colour scheme and post themes I want to use.
  • Changing the blog theme – I did this awhile ago and I’m still not satisfied with the new design
  • If all else fails: writing a book tag a week to keep my brain engaged in the blogging routine.

How have you been keeping yourself motivated for blogging recently? How have you balanced work or study with reading? Let me know in the comments!


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