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Being Bookish

Being Bookish

Author: Raye

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Avid reader, big book lover. I love recommending books, and l never spoil the ending. Episodes released every other Monday.
177 Episodes
2024 So far

2024 So far


We're almost halfway through the year so I figured it was time for a bit of a check-in. I have read a pretty decent number of books and while some have been incredible, others have not been quite so impressive. I am also taking a look at the upcoming releases that are on my 'most anticipated' list, between now and the end of September, and there are some really great books on that list (let me tell you). Clytemnestra Silver in the Bone Ruthless Vows | Divine Rivals Argylle DONATE TO LIVESTREAM FOR THE CURE
Have you ever just read a truly hyped up book and wondered what you were missing? Maybe it was Fourth Wing or Twilight, or Harry Potter? The Ministry of Time was so hyped before it was released that the BBC in the UK purchased the rights to make it into a TV series... As with every episode, I am not going to spoil the ending, but I am going to talk about my feelings as I read and finished this time-travelling debut by British-Cambodian author, Kaliane Bradley. Did I like it? Did I rate it? Find out. Don't forget, if you want to find out more about Livestream for the Cure, or donate to the event, check out the site now: The event starts on Wednesday 29th of May and I will be on livestream myself from 4pm EST/9pm BST on Thursday 30th May here:
This week I am heading all over the country with Lorraine from Once Upon a Nightmare as we follow Hercule Poirot on one of his toughest early investigations, The ABC Murders. Not only does he have to contend with a serial killer who seemingly has no discernable MO, but he is up against the clock as this murderer is putting a timer on it all. Will he solve the case? Will he beat the killer at his own game? We will reveal some, but not all of this, this week in the usual Being Bookish spoiler-free fashion.
As you may know, there are few genres I enjoy more than cosy mysteries, so when this one kept on popping up on my Insta feed I knew that I had to give it a whirl. Based in 1795, this novel follows one of my author idols, Jane Austen as she navigates social niceties, attends balls, spends time with her friends and...solves the murder of a milliner from whom she once purchased a hat in Basingstoke. As always, I won't be spoiling the ending, revealing the murder or unveiling their motive...but I will be letting you know whether I enjoyed it or not!
Not all monsters are what they seem...This week I am taking a look at probably one of the most famous 'monsters' in Greek Mythology, Medusa, with Natalie Haynes' mythological retelling of the story, Stone Blind. So, does this book live up to the hype I have heard from fans over the last couple of years? Is the book as amazing as the stunning cover would have it appear? Join me to find out what I thought, during my spoiler-free review. As ever, I will be completely honest as I take the story apart, and despite pretty much everyone knowing how the tale of Medusa ends, I am not going to reveal the unexpected twists and turns that Haynes uses in the book.
Most of you will easily remember the 1996 film starring the iconic trio that is Bette Midler, Goldie Hawn and Diane Keaton. But did you know that before it was a movie it was a book written by socialite and author Olivia Goldsmith? Released in 1992, the book is a study in society, in revenge and this book is probably what Shakespeare meant when he said 'Hell Hath No Fury Like a Woman Scorned'. For these women are 100% vindictive and out for blood. Unlike the film, this is not all sweetness and light with cute little moments such as the teasing about Elise's overdone lip implants, or the scene with the legendary Maggie Smith where she is mentoring the naive and money hungry Sarah Jessica Parker. So...what did I think when I read this for the first time? Listen on to find out! Episode links Livestream for the Cure F.T. Lukens interview (YouTube)
Sit back, relax and enjoy this incredible chat with author F.T. Lukens as we talk about their new YA Fantasy novel, Otherworldly (due for release on the 2nd of April 2024). Otherworldly is the story of non-believer Ellery who moved from their family farm to the city when the winter didn't end five years previously, destroying the family's livelihood. When they meet Knox, a familiar who has been living in the mortal realm for five years, they find themselves involved in things they don't believe and don't want to. The story has some incredibly strong themes, such as the environment, LGBTQ+ identity and underlying mythology.Of course, there is also talk about post-it notes, storyboards and stationery! Episode links F.T. Lukens on Instagram F.T. Lukens' website Book launch at Malaprop's Bookstore Special Editions from Dazzling Bookshop
A compelling combination of Six of Crows and Peaky Blinders is the way that book promoters have been selling the third novel by American author Hafsah Faizal. As someone who has never seen Peaky Blinders, but loved Six of Crows (see my review of that from 2021), does this claim actually ring true? Enter White Roaring, a town that is full of intrigue and insurrection. A town under the tyrannical rule of the mysterious Ram and meet Arthie and Jin Casimir, proprietors of Spindrift, a charming tea room with a secret. All is not as it seems on the surface, and that becomes much clearer when you realise that Arthie is a schemer, going after what she wants whatever the cost...and right now what she wants is in the Athereum; a ledger that can help her and others to take down the powers that rule so unfairly...but will they succeed? Before I read this book I had heard so much about it, the reviews are mixed, so which side of the track will mine fall? And more importantly...I won't spoil it to reveal my thoughts! Featured Episodes Six of Crows
This one book is not like the others...and that is certainly true where The Secret Adversary is concerned. With a career spanning more than 50 years, Agatha Christie created and wrote about a lot of different characters, though her most well-known and most beloved are an elderly woman who loves to knit and observe and a rotund Belgian who knows and sees everything! In 1922, Christie wrote about Tommy Beresford and his friend Tuppence Cowley for the first time. Though they would only appear in a few books, their tales are very different from others that she fact, I would go so far as to say that they are more spy novels than mysteries! But that's just me...So, join me this week on my first adventure with the Young Adventurers Ltd and see what kind of trouble they get into, and whether I like it or not! Featured episodes Cosy Crime Playlist Featured links Spybrary's recommended spy novels Raye on YouTube
Just over a year ago I reviewed a fantasy novel by a debut author, and was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed it. That book was Godkiller, and as a treat to myself for the end of the month I picked up the sequel, and second book in a trilogy titled Fallen Gods. That second book is called Sunbringer and as well as answering the question 'what happened to everyone after that cliffhanger?' the book also gives us further insight into the battles being fought across the kingdom of Middren. I loved returning to Hannah Kaner's carefully built world, and the reunion with Kissen, Inara, Skedi and Elogast was a very welcome one. As ever I am not going to spoil anything about the book I am reviewing, but I would love you to join me on my journey to reacquaint myself with old fantasy friends and find out more about Sunbringer. Featured episodes Godkiller Farewell to 2023 Best and Worst (Reads) of 2023 (YouTube)
I know, I know, I said that I would probably be staying away from Agatha Raisin for a while, but I was trying to find something on my bedside table and this book just happened to be there. So join me and Agatha and her reliable crew in Carsely as she attempts to solve the mystery of a body that disappeared, and discover what connection it has with ice cream, a naturist society and drug's a doozy, but did it impress me? Remember, there will be no spoilers, I am not going to tell you whodunnit and I certainly won't be revealing who gets to go home with Agatha at the end of the night, though I have my preferences! Featured episodes Cosy Crime Playlist Episode Links Being Bookish on YouTube
The Changeover was first published in 1984 so while I am celebrating a milestone, it's not far behind. As I have already established while talking about other 1980s YA novels, these were few and far between during that era. The happy medium where books were written with more grown-up themes targeting an audience that was going through changes was incredibly rare. Sure, we had Judy Blume, Sweet Valley High and the Sweet Dreams series, but really, that was it. The Changeover was an original, probably would be classified as a Romantasy and it's the first book I became obsessed with. A story of growth and change, of realisations and first loves, loss, and awakening. I know it won't be everyone's cup of tea, but I would love if this made you want to give it a chance. As ever, this episode is spoiler-free, though it was hard to keep it that way! Featured episodes Mel Easy Connections and Easy Freedom
Every once in a while you have to try something new, but perhaps now isn't exactly the time. I guess that's why, this week, on the recommendation of a reviewer on YouTube, I picked up the first book in the Hamish Macbeth series. If you are a fan of 1990s BBC mysteries then you may be familiar with the series (as I was), but this isn't exactly that. While you're transported to the beautiful Highland village of Lochdubh (pronounced Lochdoo) and you meet the fantastic and laid-back Hamish Macbeth, other similarities are few and far between. However, if you love a cosy mystery and want something with beautiful scenery then this might be just what you're looking for. As with every episode, I am not going to spoil the ending, reveal whodunnit or why...I am going to give you a nice in-depth look into the story itself... Featured Episodes The cosy crime playlist Episode Links Being Bookish YouTube
Ruthless Vows is the long-awaited and greatly anticipated sequel to last year's romantasy hit, Divine Rivals. Did this book change the path of our two lead characters, Iris and Roman? Did they get their happy ever after at the end of this duology? You know I won't spoil anything (so you can find that out for yourselves), but I am going to talk about how I felt about the book, what I loved, what I didn' join me on my journey through Oath and discover what I thought. Will it be controversial? Featured Episodes Divine Rivals Fourth Wing Godkiller Featured Links Being Bookish on YouTube
Argylle by Elly Conway

Argylle by Elly Conway


There is probably more mystery surrounding the author of this new spy thriller than there is about the book itself. In this week's episode I take a look at this debut novel, is it worth a read? Did it convert me? Am I now going to be reviewing more spy thrillers than anything else (listen to find out!)? So, what is it about Argylle? Is it truly going to be the start of a fantastic new gripping franchise? I dipped my toes into the book to find out. So give this 100% spoiler-free review a listen and then make your own decision about whether you want to give Argylle a try. Featured Episodes Call for the Dead Episode Links Spybrary on 2023 book recommendations Being Bookish YouTube Being Bookish Instagram Being Bookish TikTok
Farewell to 2023

Farewell to 2023


This week I am looking at my favourite books of the year, according to the reviews I released. So while I have read much more than I have reviewed here, I thought I would stick to the books on Being Bookish. Did I pick an unexpected book? Did I miss out one of the books you felt deserved to be on the list? Give this episode a listen to find out which books I felt were deserving of a second (or possibly third) visit. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank every one of you for listening to and supporting the podcast this year and I look forward to sharing more books with you in 2024 from Monday the 15th of January.Happy New Year
The year has been full of incredible fantasy debuts and what better way to round up the year than with another one? This time it is a book inspired by Filipino mythology, full of vibrant colours and strong characters. The Hurricane Wars by Thea Guanzon was released in October 2023 and probably has one of the most beautiful covers I have seen in years, and that's saying something when I look at some of the books I have added to my collection over the last 18 months. It's a beautiful story of enemies who must work together in order to prevent the end of their world. It also includes a lot of the romantic tropes that make many readers happy; enemies to lovers, forced marriage, undeniable chemistry...So, what did I think when I read this book after receiving it in a subscription box? Give it a listen and find out! Remember, I won't spoil the ending. Featured episodes Fourth Wing Iron Flame The Love Hypothesis Featured links Being Bookish on YouTube Being Bookish Website Being Bookish Instagram Being Bookish on TikTok
Richard Ainsworth is a 53-year-old English man who has made his home in the fictional Val de Follet, running a quiet B&B where nothing happens, until the day one of his elderly guests goes missing and he, along with a mysterious and glamorous guest, Valerie D'Orcay find a bloody handprint on the wall. Will this staid and sensible B&B owner make the most of this opportunity to seek adventure? Will the mismatched couple manage to solve the mystery? You know I won't tell you everything, but I will tell you what I think of Moore's 2021 cosy crime debut. Featured episodes Cosy Crime Playlist Illuminae Featured links The Sparks Trilogy by Kerry Law
Returning to the world of science fiction with the first in The Illuminae Files trilogy by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff - I found I couldn't stay away from their collaborations and I am sad that after I finish the third book in the series, Obsidio, there are no more. What happens when it seems as though the only beings talking sense after a planet is invaded by a violent and greedy corporation are a psychotic AI and two teenagers? Through medical files, IM chat records, illustrations and military reports we find out what Kady and Ezra do when their planet is taken over and, having lost everything, they have to figure out what's really going on and try and protect what's left of their lives. And then of course there's AIDAN... Featured Episodes Aurora Rising Skyward Featured Links Instagram Being Bookish Website
I couldn't stay away from Carsely, so I decided that I wouldn't. With a whole series to choose from I decided to return to the small Cotswold Village with book 31 in the series, Hot to Trot. Agatha and Charles are in trouble, and it's not the fun kind. Charles's new and admittedly unbearable young wife, Mary, has been found dead and of course, CI Wilkes is placing Agatha on the suspect list. Agatha knows that she has to solve the murder before Charles is jailed for killing his bride...but the suspect list is long and time is growing short. With the help of her friends, she will find out who killed Lady Mary and get an innocent man free before things go even more wrong. Find out what I thought about this 2020 cosy mystery release, and you know I won't reveal the ending! Featured episodes Cosy mystery playlist There Goes the Bride A Spoonful of Poison Dead on Target Iron Flame Episode links Instagram Being Bookish Website