Bookshop Girl by Chloe Coles

Bookshop Girl by Chloe Coles

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I received an e-ARC of this manuscript via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Books set in bookshops always get put straight to the top of my to-be-read list, so when I heard about “Bookshop Girl” I couldn’t wait to read it.

When the regional manager of Bennett’s bookshop comes for a meeting the staff are devastated to learn that their branch of the store will be closed. Sold to them as a fait accompli, they resign themselves to the idea- all except Paige Turner (don’t worry, the obvious jokes are addressed and it isn’t as cheesy as it seems!) and her best friend Holly who decide to become activists to prevent their only haven in their hometown from being closed.

I’ve never worked in a bookshop myself, but I have experienced the soul crushing sadness of seeing yet another beloved bookshop disappear from the high street until the only place left to buy books is an hour away or online.

I loved the friendship between Chloe and Holly and how silly they were together whilst also being supportive of each other. Their antics whilst attending their still life course were hilarious, and exactly how two sixteen year old girls would behave in such an awkward setting.

There was some romance in this book, but it really took a back seat to the main plot which I think was really positive. The girls had their crushes but the bookshop and their friendship was far more important. Paige and Holly’s efforts to save the bookshop are so earnest and determined and their love for books is infectious. By the time I finished reading I was desperate to visit my nearest bookshop!

Bookshop Girl is a really fun, light, easy to read contemporary. The main characters are strong female leads and the whole message of the book is really positive. I’m looking forward to reading more in the series and continuing to get to know Paige and Holly.
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Bookworm: A Memoir of Childhood Reading by Lucy Mangan

Bookworm: A Memoir of Childhood Reading by Lucy Mangan

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I received an e-ARC of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

As a self-proclaimed bookworm I love nothing more than hearing about other bookworm’s reading experiences. Lucy Mangan’s memoir is exactly the sort of nostalgia trip I hoped it would be. It was a little self-indulgent in places but if you can’t be self-indulgent in a memoir, when can you be?

Her descriptions of the books she read as a child are wonderful and the historical background she gives to the publication of each book was fascinating for the most part (although I’ll admit to skimming one or two books which I myself never read).

What I loved most about this book was the passion for reading that jumped off the page. I’ve never before read something which so accurately sums up why I love reading, what I feel when I read and how it feels like every book I read as a child became part of my soul. It was an absolute joy to travel through Lucy’s childhood with her and discover that it wasn’t just me ploughing my way through childhood devouring book after book.

As I’ve grown up I’ve realised that true bookworms are few and far between. The same people that tell me they love reading balk at the idea I read 100 books a year. Lucy, I feel, would be my ideal friend. The type of friend you could meet up with for coffee but spend most of your time reading in companionable silence, only coming up for air to share a particularly good passage.

If you’re anything like me you’ll read “Bookworm” and will want to keep notes so you don’t forget all the books you want to look up after you’ve finished reading. Luckily, a very handy list of all the books discussed is included should you forget which ones you had intended to seek out. Personally there are a few on the list I can’t wait to check out for the first time, many I read as a child and would love to revisit as an adult and more still I look forward to sharing with my daughter in the years to come.

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