So in June I read the following:

The Cancer Survivor's Companion: Practical Ways to Cope with Your Feelings After CancerThe Cancer Survivor’s Companion: Practical Ways to Cope with Your Feelings After Cancer by Frances Goodhart
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I’m wavering between 4-5 for this book – I can’t think what I’d do differently, but also didn’t underline loads of stuff! The general feeling that I got from it was that there is a lot of good-sound and practical advice in there. A lot around mindfulness and insomnia I’ve come across before (those are not new to me with cancer) …. The use of a pair of writers – medical expert and health journalist means it’s clearly written – and would be of help not only to those who have finished treatment (I’m not sure how much it would help those with secondaries?) – but also Friends, family and colleagues who are expecting people to ‘bounce back to normal’ …

To be honest it hasn’t yet sunk in what has happened over the past few months – and this book indicates that a) that’s really common and b) it can hit a couple of years down the line (eek!)

Breaking Busy: How to Find Peace and Purpose in a World of CrazyBreaking Busy: How to Find Peace and Purpose in a World of Crazy by Alli Worthington
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I enjoyed this book enough to share bits of it as I was reading it. Trying to come to terms with the fact that I won’t have as much energy in the past … it was good to be reminded that Jesus wants us to ‘live life to the full’ but this means family, Friends, faith as much as work – and there are tactics for deciding whether to say no to things – even those things you’d love to do! The one that’s going through my head in particular is the 10-10-10 tactic re deciding on whether to say yes/no to things – how will you feel about this decision in 10 mins, 10 months and 10 years?

My main quibble was with the assumption that social media is framed largely as a waste of time and the notion that everything should be done face to face – but that’s a pretty common narrative!

Georgette Heyer: Biography of a BestsellerGeorgette Heyer: Biography of a Bestseller by Jennifer Kloester
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Tomorrow I’m off to the second Georgette Heyer conference I’ve been to in my life. At the last one, this book was just going through the printing process – so it’s taken the spur of tomorrow to get round to reading this! I was introduced to Heyer by mum with Frederica and they are a default read (along with Harry Potter) for chilling out to – well written plots, funny humour, morally sound, etc. So I really enjoyed reading about her upbringing, way of thinking etc and the context that produced each of her novels! Fascinating!

These Old Shades (Alastair, #1)These Old Shades by Georgette Heyer
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Not the first time I’ve read this, but I enjoy this book – one of Heyer’s earlier works – bouncing between France and England – a bit of a mystery woven in between the rest of it. Started it the night before a conference on Heyer … and yes – the eugenics stuff does kind of bounce out at you, but the comedy and characterisation draw you in!!


Missing PiecesMissing Pieces by Laura Pearson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed this book – A friend in a Facebook group said she’d written her first novel, so I decided to go and have a look. I picked it up, and aside for a short break for some food, didn’t put it back down again til I got to the end. I thought the characters were really well rounded, and the story well paced. In many ways it’s a really sad book – but not misery lit … and there’s a lot of hope in it.

WonderWonder by R.J. Palacio
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was another YBCN book club read … so thought I’d better get my skates on and read it. Read 90% of it on a 2.5 hour flight and the rest in the queue for passport control/baggage! Pretty clearly YA fiction, it’s really nicely written from a number of different people’s perspectives as it leads to the conclusion – really great insights into August (and his friends/family) life – and the fact that he sees himself as a totally ordinary kid (despite the ‘bravery’ epithets upon him … as with cancer .. he’s just getting on with life best he can). Some really emotional/hurtful challenges in the way kids are with anyone ‘different’. I loved the ‘precepts’ by one of the teachers – and that the kids had to choose their own – and one of them chose ‘Keep Calm and Carry On – some saying from World War II’.

The Friday Night Knitting Club (Friday Night Knitting Club, #1)The Friday Night Knitting Club by Kate Jacobs
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was one of several books I picked up in a charity shop – looked like a good one to take on holiday – and mostly it’s been great for that … read it at a bit of a gallop when I was rather unsettled by the fact that a friend has died of cancer (which I am also recovering from) – so the cancer storyline threw me a bit … I’m not a knitter but thought it was a nicely put together story that had emotional ups and downs but otherwise didn’t put too much strain on the brain.

Our Summer TogetherOur Summer Together by Fanny Blake
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I found this book very easy reading although it deals with some quite deep subjects, including finding yourself divorced over 60 and not sure what to do for yourself and who you are. Weaves in some shocking details about the Bosnian war, but very enjoyable for a holiday read – I’d read more by this author.

View all my reviews

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