Anne of Green GablesTitle: Anne of Green Gables

Author: LM Montgomery

Pages: 445 Pages

Publisher: Puffin in Bloom

The Blurb

Anne of Green Gables is a best-selling novel and Canadian classic. It was originally intended for all audiences, but is now commonly considered a children’s book. Two middle-aged siblings decide to adopt an orphan to help them on their farm. But instead of the boy they were expecting, a plucky young girl called Anne Shirley turns up on their doorstep…


The Review

This year I decided I was going to read four classic novels. My choice of novels comes from the packaging. Puffin released the Bloom series which includes Anne of Green Gables among others. Having decided to read one every three months I figured it would give me plenty of time to get it finished. What I didn’t bank on was falling completely in love with the story of a little orphan girl called Anne.

Ok, you can argue that there are similarities to the 80s film Anne but LM Montgomery got there first.

I absolutely adored this book and I felt a strange connection to the character Anne. If ever there has been a character throughout literature that I feel mirrors my personality it would have to be Anne Shirley. She was bolshie, dramatic, romantic and headstrong. She was the strong feisty female protagonist before we even knew what one was.

Anne of Green Gables is a heart warming joy of a read that once again falls into the category of a warm hug of a book.

Anne of Green Gables by LM Montgomery is available now.

4 Stars

My Life As A BenchTitle: My Life as a Bench

Author: Jaq Hazell

Pages: 234 Pages

Publisher: Nowness Books

The Blurb

There are so many benches lining the riverside, each and every one tragic in its own way.’

Unique and haunting, this is a story about love, friendship, a passion for music and what, if anything, remains after we’ve gone.

Ren Miller has died aged seventeen and yet her consciousness lives on, inhabiting her memorial bench by the River Thames in London. Ren longs to be reunited with her boyfriend Gabe, but soon discovers why he has failed to visit. Devastated, she must learn to break through and talk to the living so she can reveal the truth about her tragic end.

The Review

Sometimes a book will stay with you for all the right reasons long after you have turned the final page. I think that My Life is a Bench by Jaq Hazell will be such a book. Not because I overly loved it. It was good but I have read books that captured my heart more but because the story is just so cleverly thought out and so unusual.

It is the story of Ren Miller whose life has been tragically cut short. Her soul however lingers on in a memorial bench that has been bought in honour of her. She’s not alone. She strikes up a friendship with the bench next to her and sometimes she has visitors. However, the person she longs to see the most hasn’t been to see her…yet.

My Life as a Bench really is an inspired story. I giggled all the way through at Ren’s frustration and boredom in death. It was heart-warming in places and it made me hope against hope that I never turn into a bench.

My Life as a Bench by Jaq Hazell is available now.

For more information regarding Jaq Hazell (@jaqhazell) please visit

3 Stars

Fatigue FreeTitle: Fatigue Free with Crohn’s and Colitis – How Diet, Mindset and Lifestyle can Increase Your Energy when Living with IBD

Author: Greg Williams

Pages: 111 Pages

Publisher: Amazon Media

The Blurb

A complete guide to naturally overcoming fatigue / increasing your energy levels when suffering with Crohn’s Disease or Ulcerative Colitis. This book takes the reader through the necessary steps in a clear simple way, and covers a large number of areas including diet, mindset, exercise, sleep, testing, toxin exposure and more. An absolute must for anyone who suffers with inflammatory bowel disease. Written by the leading expert in naturally helping sufferers of Crohn’s and Ulcerative Colitis.

The Review

I’m always sceptical about ‘quick fixes’ and the pessimistic side of me thinks that if something sounds too good to be true then it probably is.

This is kind of how I feel about Greg Williams’ understanding of Colitis. I have Colitis and without trying to make a funny pun (but doing so anyway) it is a pain in the ass. Greg Williams’ book is pretty interesting. His reason for trying to find a better way off living with Colitis is because his wife struggled with the condition. He is a nutritionist so he merged his two worlds to write the book.

There is a lot to be learned from Fatigue Free with Crohn’s and Colitis – How Diet, Mindset and Lifestyle can Increase Your Energy when Living with IBD. Stuff that even after five years of being diagnosed I didn’t know. It also looks at the condition from the perspective of “what is the root of this problem” and not from the go to move of “how do we medicate.” That was quite refreshing.

Whilst I don’t necessarily think I am quite sold on the total concept of Fatigue Free with Crohn’s and Colitis – How Diet, Mindset and Lifestyle can Increase Your Energy when Living with IBD I definitely have a better understanding and a fresh perspective on my IBD.

I would recommend this book to anyone suffering with IBD.

Fatigue Free with Crohn’s and Colitis – How Diet, Mindset and Lifestyle can Increase Your Energy when Living with IBD by Greg Williams is available now.

For more information regarding Greg Williams (@IBDSuccess) please visit

3 Stars

Some Like it Hot at the Picture House by the SeaTitle: Some Like it Hot at the Picture House by the Sea

Author: Holly Hepburn

Pages: 100 Pages

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

The Blurb

Part Four in the brilliant new series from the bestselling author of The Star and Sixpence series. Perfect for fans of Cathy Bramley.

After several months in Cornwall helping her grandfather run the family business, Gina has almost forgotten what London life is like, and her boyfriend Max has most definitely noticed…. With all her energy going into the newly renovated Palace picture house and the ever-successful Ferrelli’s ice-cream business, he’s not getting much attention. To make matters worse, Gina is spending more and more time with her friend and co-renovator, Ben, and old feelings are starting to resurface.

But as Gina’s time in Cornwall draws to a close and she starts thinking about returning to life in London with Max, the cinema’s very future comes under threat from a developer with greed in his eyes. Will Gina stay in Polwhipple? And can she help owner Gorran save the Palace before it is too late…?

The Review

Ahh, the final part of The Picture House by the Sea series has come and gone and I have that pleasantly comfortable feeling that you can get once you have read a good book. I like to think of it as the hot water bottle feeling. I feel snug.

Some Like it Hot at the Picture House by the Sea has the cinema reopening to much applause but before then there has been some dastardly plots afoot that Gina, Ben and the gang have had to try and fix but in the grand tradition of rom-com books it all works out in the end.

I am so glad I read this series. It really has been a warm hug on a cold day.

Well done, Holly Hepburn.

Some Like it Hot at the Picture House by the Sea by Holly Hepburn is available now.

For more information regarding Holly Hepburn (@HollyH_Author) please visit

For more information regarding Simon & Schuster (@simonschusterUK) please visit

3 Stars

The Best Minds of My GenerationTitle: The Best Minds of My Generation – A Literary History of the Beats

Author: Allen Ginsberg

Pages: 496 Pages

Publisher: Grove Atlantic/Grove Press

The Blurb

In 1977, twenty years after the publication of his landmark poem “Howl,” and Jack Kerouac’s seminal book On the Road, Allen Ginsberg decided it was time to teach a course on the literary history of the Beat Generation. Through the creation of this course, which he ended up teaching five times, first at the Naropa Institute and later at Brooklyn College, Ginsberg saw an opportunity to present the history of Beat Literature in his own inimitable way. Compiled and edited by renowned Beat scholar Bill Morgan, and with an introduction by Anne Waldman, The Best Minds of My Generation presents the lectures in edited form, complete with notes, and paints a portrait of the Beats as Ginsberg knew them: friends, confidantes, literary mentors, and fellow revolutionaries.

Ginsberg was seminal to the creation of a public perception of Beat writers and knew all of the major figures personally, making him uniquely qualified to be the historian of the movement. In The Best Minds of My Generation, Ginsberg shares anecdotes of meeting Kerouac, Burroughs, and other writers for the first time, explains his own poetics, elucidates the importance of music to Beat writing, discusses visual influences and the cut-up method, and paints a portrait of a group who were leading a literary revolution. For Beat aficionados and neophytes alike, The Best Minds of My Generation is a personal yet critical look at one of the most important literary movements of the twentieth century.

The Review

I was really eager to read The Best Minds of My Generation but had been put off by an experience of reading On The Road by Jack Kerouac. This will probably shock a lot of people but I just didn’t rate it. I read it because I felt like I was supposed to have read it. But, to be perfectly honest, I just wasn’t that impressed.

Anyway, I decided to bite the bullet and go for it and just immerse myself in the world of the Beat Writers.

I kind of wish I had chosen another book to read. That probably sounds really harsh but it is because this book, The Best Minds of My Generation, is clearly for hardcore Beat enthusiasts. It is not for someone who is tentatively dipping their toes into this genre.

My recommendation would be that anyone wanting to learn about the history of this period then look elsewhere. If you already love this genre of writing then knock yourself out.

The Best Minds of My Generation – A Literary History of the Beats by Allen Ginsberg is available now.

For more information regarding Grove Atlantic (@groveatlantic) please visit

2 Stars