by Nick Hornby
by Jo Baker
Pride and Prejudice as told by the servants, this sounded fun. It was to begin with, but the characters weren't likeable enough so the premise wore thin. And it got weird at the end.
by Anna Godberson
I picked this up because of the pretty cover. There are four books in the series, and they're trashy but good fun. Basically it's Gossip Girl set at the turn of the 19th century. The characters could be better developed, particularly the boys, but the plots were nice and twisty.
The Prophecy of the Gems
by Flavia Bujor
This was written by a fourteen year old, which will forever make me feel inferior. I discovered this book when I was ten or eleven, and loved it. It was exactly the kind of book I wished I'd written myself. The story follows three young girls - a lady, a commoner and a peasant (Jade, Opal and Amber) on some kind of quest. I can't remember much about it and if I read it now it'd probably read like fanfiction, but I do remember that it was surprisingly original, with a real fairytale feel.
by Celia Rees
A book about a teenage, female highwayman? What's not to like? A lot, as it turns out. This wasn't that great, although there were good bits. As my sister put it at the time: what did I expect? If she's a highwayman, why is she wearing mascara on the cover?
Beatrice and Benedick
by Marina Fiorato
The story of Beatrice and Benedick (from Much Ado About Nothing)'s first meeting. Why has this not been written before? I was enjoying it (see review here) but then I lost it in the house somewhere and by the time I found it again I'd moved on to other things. It was fun though, I'll have to go back to it at some point.
by Bernard Cornwell
I'd heard of Sharpe and I'd seen bits of old episodes on TV, but I'd never really considered reading the books as I always thought of them as a 'man's' series. I'd never met a girl who was into them. But then I finished my third year dissertation and was hanging around my uni house at a bit of a loose end. The Bangor WH Smiths doesn't have the biggest variety, so I picked up the first book (that was written, not the first chronologically) and have never looked back. They're good, although they are a bit on the manly side. There's loads of battle tactics and the female characters are under-developed.
13 Little Blue Envelopes
by Maureen Johnson
No idea why I bought this one. I liked it though! Seventeen year old Ginny's aunt Peg dies, leaving Ginny some instructions, in the form of thirteen little blue envelopes. Basically Peg wants her to travel, so one envelope might say go to this bank account, get out x amount of money and go to England, etc. It was a fun little story, although the end was so frustrating. The biggest revelation though, was that people don't drink squash in America. How do they live!!
by Stella Newman
I bought this in the airport on the way to Ibiza, because I'd forgotten to pack a beach read. There was very little choice in that airport. The Dish is about an anonymous food critic who writes a career-ruining review for a restaurant and then falls for the chef. Should she tell him who she is? It was a fun premise (a bit You've Got Mail -ish) but there wasn't much more to it than that. If you were a real foodie maybe it'd be more interesting, but I'm not, particularly. And I didn't really warm to the main girl.
Alanna: the First Adventure
by Tamora Pierce
I got this out the library for a reading lesson in year seven, and quickly got addicted. 10 year old Alanna wants to be a knight while her twin brother wants to study magic, so they switch places and Alanna heads off as 'Alan' to train as a squire. This series had so much drama! I remember telling my cousin the plot in installments on our walk to school, especially when I got onto the later books and Alanna had all these romantic entanglements. I was very much team George.
Have you read any of these? Ever found your favourite book on a whim? Let me know in the comments!