Review: The Hormone Diaries – Hannah Witton

The Hormone Diaries

The Bloody Truth About Our Periods

Hannah Witton

Wren & Rook

Hachette Australia

ISBN: 9781526361462

 

Description:

An honest, funny and feminist take on living with your period (and hormones!), by the award-winning sex and relationships vlogger, and author of Doing It!, Hannah Witton.

 

When Hannah Witton started documenting her journey coming off the pill and re-getting her period, she wasn’t anticipating the reaction, from people of all ages, that talking about it would bring. It exposed a glaring gap – the resources and the spaces to talk honestly about periods just aren’t there. And with more and more research showing that your period and your hormones can affect literally every area of your life, this is a problem.

 

Inspired by her YouTube series of the same name, The Hormone Diaries draws on Hannah’s own experiences and, through crowdsourcing on her social media platforms, those of her fans too. With her trademark honesty and humour, Hannah explores and demystifies topics surrounding periods, hormones and contraception, to offer readers support, information and advice.

 

The definitive period self-help book 50% of the world has been waiting for!

 

My View:

This is a fabulous read! This is an open, honest, and at times humorous and easy to read exploration of a subject that needs to be talked about and a book that needs to be shared.  I wish it had been available when I was a teenager. It has answers to probably most questions that any young person may have about their periods or lack of them. It is a resource I hope that you will find in libraries and schools and is the perfect gift for those on the cusp of puberty.

 

And I think 100% of the population would benefit from reading this informative book.

Review: Bluey – The Beach – Bluey

Bluey – The Beach

Bluey

Puffin

Penguin Random House

ISBN: 9781760894054

 

Description:

“Based on the hit ABC KIDS TV show!

 

Join Bluey for a fun day at the beach. What will you discover along the way?

 

While Mum is off for a walk along the beach, Bluey discovers a beautiful shell. She runs to show Mum and has a series of encounters that will both excite and test her in unexpected ways.

 

Bluey has been a phenomenal success since airing on ABC KIDS in October 2018, amassing legions of dedicated fans and taking the coveted position of being the most watched program ever on ABC iView, with over 100 million plays. It has also topped the Australian iTunes Kids Chart with the series peaking at #1 and consistently remaining in the Top 5.” https://www.penguin.com.au/books/bluey-the-beach-9781760894054

 

 

My View:

Delightful! WE all love Bluey – young and old. This book has a charming colloquial Australian voice and is full of humour and of course great lessons for the young people.

 

I think this book will be the hit of Christmas – the BEST present! And the good news – there are more in the series to make birthday gift buying during the year easy.

Review: From the Ashes – Rowena Holloway

From The Ashes

(Ashes to Ashes #3)

 Rowena Holloway

Fractured Press

ISBN: 9780648205210

 

Description:

 The gripping conclusion to the page-turning Ashes To Ashes psychological thriller series

 

To expose the truth, she’ll trade the only thing she has left…

 

Journalist Charlotte Ashe has sacrificed her credibility, her friendships and her career. With no job and no prospects and a soon-to-be invalid working visa, she needs a big story. Fast. Her single lead is Blaxon Hall, a private brain injury clinic owned by Tyrone Garner.

 

And Tyrone Garner has become an obsession…

 

When Charlotte uncovers mystery surrounding the recent deaths of residents at the Hall, she knows she’s found her story. Are the deaths natural or murder? Does a killer lurk at the Hall? And why is Garner determined to keep his past, and his visits to the Hall, a secret?

 

But the closer she gets to the truth the real question becomes whether she can trust what she sees. Is she exposing the truth or is it all a figment of her overwrought imagination?

 

Then Blaxon Hall is consumed by fire. And one of the missing is Charlotte Ashe.

 

Lies kept her safe. Until Charlotte Ashe discovered the truth.

And his enemies found his weakness.

 

Read From The Ashes today and get lost in a labyrinth of twists that will leave you guessing until the last page.

 

 

My View:

Once again Rowena Holloway excels in her provision of the despicable, the violent and so credible “bad guy (s)” that in a few instances I had to stop and take a break from reading – such was the tension created on the page.

 

From the Ashes is the 3rd book in the Ashes to Ashes series is in my opinion the strongest in the series; perhaps that is because we have been on this journey with Charlotte and are invested in the outcome. Perhaps it’s because we see a different side of Charlotte – a more caring and selfless person who has developed a caring relationship with the residents of Blazon Hall.

 

Stay on this journey for a very twisty ride. I really enjoy the style of the writing – the different view points, the back and forward. There are many red herrings and wrong turns before the final exciting and satisfying ending.

 

This series is a great read.

 

PS I really like the cover designs on these books too.

 

Review: Darkness For Light – Emma Viskic

Darkness For Light

A Caleb Zelic Thriller

Emma Viskic

Echo Publishing

ISBN: 9781760685812

RRP $29.99

 

Description:

After a lifetime of bad decisions troubled PI Caleb Zelic is finally making good ones. He’s in therapy, reconnecting with the Deaf community, and reconciling with his beloved wife.

But he can’t escape his past.

A violent confrontation forces Caleb back into contact with his double-crossing partner, Frankie. When her niece is kidnapped, Frankie and Caleb must work together to save the child’s life. But their efforts will risk everything, including their own lives.

 

My View:

I think I’ve been waiting all year for this book!

 

Those who know me personally, that is, in real life, will have heard me lament what I have experienced as a very lean year for crime fiction readers.  Don’t get me wrong I am not saying that the crime fiction books I have read are lacking in readability or excitement, they have just been lacking. For some reason so many excellent literary/contemporary reads have found their way to my mail box – some truly remarkable, outstanding reads but I am at heart a crime fiction reader and reviewer…and it feels like I have been waiting for this read all year!

 

This is an outstanding read (and just quietly between you and me, I’ll let you know now that this book is going to tie for my best crime fiction read of the 2019!)  Shhhhh…my “Best of Lists” haven’t been prepared yet but the minute I started reading this latest offering from Emma Viskic I knew that had a winner here.

 

I am not going to say anymore except I won’t be giving anything away but if you have enjoyed the Caleb Zelic thrillers you will adore this latest book! It is THE BEST of the three and it brings together two of my favourite characters – Frankie and Caleb – their relationship is complex and in this edition there will be revelations that will cause you palpitations.  It’s not all gloom though, there is optimism and hope for the future in this read.

 

Enough said, look out for this book which is sure to be on many “Best of 2019” lists and I predict will earn a place in many of next year’s crime fiction wards

 

 

 

Review: You Don’t Know Me – Sara Foster

You Don’t Know Me

Sara Foster

Simon & Schuster Australia

ISBN: 9781925685367

 

Description:

He’s guarding a dark secret, but so is she.

 

Lizzie Burdett was eighteen when she vanished, and Noah Carruso has never forgotten her. She was his first crush, his unrequited love. She was also his brother’s girlfriend.

 

Tom Carruso hasn’t been home in over a decade. He left soon after Lizzie disappeared, under a darkening cloud of suspicion, and now he’s back for the inquest into Lizzie’s death – intent on telling his side of the story.

 

As the inquest looms, Noah meets Alice Pryce on holiday. They fall for each other fast and hard, but Noah can’t bear to tell Alice his deepest fears. And Alice is equally stricken – she carries a terrible secret of her own.

 

Is the truth worth telling if it will destroy everything?

 

 

My View:

Sara Foster is an excellent storyteller and a nice person to boot 🙂

What Sara always does well:

Dialogue – always realistic, fitting of the age groups involved/the relationships, the times.

Relationships – so well developed and again, realistic.

Surprises – the twists are good and in this one I couldn’t see the revelation coming.

The writing – always engaging.

 

What more could you want in a book?  A great read.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Guest Review: Invisible Boys – Holden Shepherd

This must be the standout book of the year – everyone is talking about this. Read what guest viewer Andy Macleod thought of this award winning debut novel.

Invisible Boys

Holden Shepherd

Fremantle Press

ISBN: 9781925815566 

 

Description:

In a small town, everyone thinks they know you: Charlie is a hardcore rocker, who’s not as tough as he looks. Hammer is a footy jock with big AFL dreams, and an even bigger ego. Zeke is a shy over-achiever, never macho enough for his family. But all three boys hide who they really are. When the truth is revealed, will it set them free or blow them apart?

Invisible Boys is a raw, confronting YA novel, tackling homosexuality, masculinity, anger and suicide with a nuanced and unique perspective. Set in regional Western Australia, the novel follows three sixteen-year-old boys in the throes of coming to terms with their homosexuality in a town where it is invisible – and so are they. Invisible Boys depicts the complexities and trauma of rural gay identity with painful honesty, devastating consequence and, ultimately, hope.

 

Invisible Boys – A review by Andy Macleod

Up until two days ago, I had only once before sobbed uncontrollably while reading a novel. It was Skallagrig, by William Horwood. It was the 1980s and I was in my twenties.

I’m now in my late fifties, and I’ve just finished Holden Sheppard‘s award-winning debut novel, Invisible Boys.

Set in Geraldton in WA’s Midwest, Invisible Boys follows three very different teenagers, Charlie, Hammer and Zeke, as they grapple with being gay in a very straight town.

This novel spoke directly to me like no other. The characters and I, although separated by nearly a generation, have a lot in common.

We share not only a hometown, but the fear, rejection, taunts and loneliness that came with being gay in it.

Finally, someone has put into words the trauma of my own experience growing up gay when I couldn’t.

When I finished Invisible Boys, I felt something crack, crumble and fall away deep inside. I’m still unpacking what that may have been. Possibly shame, maybe silence. I’ll need to work on it.

Is Invisible Boys only a book for gay men? Absolutely not. If nothing else, it’s also a great story, and I hope it becomes required reading in the high school curriculum.

You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, but whatever you do, you won’t regret reading Invisible Boys.

My favourite laugh-out loud-moment would have to be the ‘onion rings’ reference.

 

 

Gas Station Charcuterie Plate: You Suck At Cooking – You Suck At Cooking

My View:This book is hilarious and useful 🙂  And possibly will solve your search for “what to get the person who has everything” for Christmas. Check out the authors  Youtube cooking show here:

 

Description:

Do you crave food all the time? Do you think you might want to eat again in the future? Do you suck at cooking? Inspired by the wildly popular YouTube channel, these 60+ recipes will help you suck slightly less

You already know the creator of the YouTube show You Suck at Cooking by his well-manicured hands and mysterious voice, and now you’ll know him for this equally well-manicured and mysterious tome. It contains more than sixty recipes for beginner cooks and noobs alike, in addition to hundreds of paragraphs and sentences, as well as photos and drawings.

You’ll learn to cook with unintimidating ingredients in dishes like Broccoli Cheddar Quiche Cupcake Muffin-Type Things, Eddie’s Roasted Red Pepper Dip (while also learning all about Eddie’s sad, sad life), Jalapeno Chicken, and also other stuff. In addition, there are cooking tips that can be applied not only to the very recipes in this book, but also to recipes outside of this book, and to all other areas of your life (with mixed results).

In the end, you just might suck slightly less at cooking.*

*Results not guaranteed

Extract from You Suck at Cooking, photography by Andrew Thomas Lee,
published by Ebury Australia on 19 November 2019, RRP $29.99

 

GAS STATION CHARCUTERIE PLATE p.88

SERVES HOWEVER MANY PEOPLE ARE COMING OVER
Washer fluid
Gasoline of your choice
Pepperoni sticks
Almonds
Beef jerky
Cheese
Roasted almonds
Salted pistachios
Honey-roasted peanuts
Barbecue peanuts
Pumpkin seeds
Sunflower seeds
Dark chocolate
Any other interesting snacks
you can find at a gas station
1  Pop the hood of your car and locate translucent white tank with a water symbol
cap and close the hood.

2  Fill your gas tank with gas.

3 Go inside the store with actual money like it’s the old fashioned days. Locate any interesting snacks and purchase
them, and don’t forget to pay for,go home and wash the gasoline off your hands.

4  Cut the pepperoni sticks into bite-sized pieces. Cut them on an angle if you’re feeling extra fancy.

5 Arrange all the snacks on a plate, platter, or serving board in a way that makes sense, such as grouping nuts and meats together, or putting nuts and meats as far away as possible from each other. Serve, and never tell your date where the snacks came from.

*The Gas Station Charcuterie Plate is possible because we live in the golden age of mobile snacking. It is also bound to be a hit because of the human tendency to equate variety with quality. Which is not to say the foods at gas stations are of low quality. It’s just easy to take for granted the fact that you can get food, on a whim, at any time of the day or night, at these lonely fossil fuel outposts. In the future, a mobile rest stop subscription service will pull up beside you while you’re driving, refuel your car, give you snacks, and let you use the restroom, all at 105
kilometres per hour. And the fuel will be laser beams.