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Charmed Life (Essential Modern Classics)

Charmed Life  - Diana Wynne Jones Elegant and charming. Cuffed at 4 stars because it didn't quite surpass Howl's for me. Absolutely loved it though. Looking forward to the rest.

Unnatural Creatures: Stories Selected by Neil Gaiman

Unnatural Creatures - Maria Dahvana Headley, Neil Gaiman A superb collection of fantastical, whimsical stories. It was a pleasure to read Diana Wynne Jones's work again, and I now have a firm favourite of a warewolf story in the form of Anthony Boucher's "The Compleat Warewolf". Other notable mentions include: "The Griffin and the Minor Cannon" by Frank R. Stockton, and Neil Gaiman's "Sunbird".

The Little Stranger

The Little Stranger - Sarah Waters Very nearly 4 stars. Creepy and well written. Felt overly long at times, sometimes laborious. I'm glad I read purely for the Doctor; the more time passes, the spookier he gets.

The Yellow Wall-Paper

The Yellow Wallpaper - Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Elaine Hedges Short, creepy and wonderful. Now terrified of wallpaper.

The Magic Toyshop

The Magic Toyshop - Angela Carter Read for university. A generous 3.7 stars, as I can't give halves. Beautifully written, but sometimes to the point of exhaustion. A dark, jarring tale. Left me intrigued. Enjoyed.

Fahrenheit 451

Fahrenheit 451 - Ray Bradbury "'Go,' I said to Montag, thrusting another dime into the machine, 'and live your life, changing it as you go. I'll run after.'Montag ran. I followed.Montag's novel is here.I am grateful that he wrote it for me."What to say about this novel that hasn’t already been said? It’s not impossible for me to sum it up for its parts, but rather, easier for me to tell you, briefly, how it made me feel.The beginning blew me away. Here’s a man, I thought, that writes like his fingers are on fire – as though they’re firecrackers burning up, about to extinguish absolutely and forever. And he did. He really did. If there’s something to be said and re-said about Bradbury, it’d be the love he had for everything. Not just books and nature and the wonders of the world, but for its people, the good and bad in all and everything; leaves on a tree and the sound of the wind; stars in the sky; book dust and carnivals… just everything .Montag shows us the good and bad in people, in ourselves, and the people we love. Even the people we’ve never met. And society? Bradbury takes it by the shoulders, shakes it hard and strips its clothes. It’s terrifying, exhilarating, blinding… all within the space of a world that is fantastic by means and darned by execution; believable, too, and horribly tantalising.I had high expectations for Fahrenheit 451, and I’d be lying if I said they were all realised. I blame myself, in part, for stretching its legend too long and too far in front of me before I read it. The Sieve and the Sand chapter faltered, ever so slightly, for me, so much so I thought that was it – the book was falling away between my fingers, I thought I’d never get the initial warm-admiration feeling back. There go Bradbury’s tight-knit characters, all pleasure and kerosene; there go the thrills and damnations of burning books, and there goes the life of a wonderful character, Clarisse; here comes the chill of the chase.But it did come back.And even as the book came to its close I was still missing Clarisse. She should have been there, on the train tracks, with Plato and Einstein and Darwin. But then, I suppose she was, in some small way, standing next to Montag…I do love this book, but it’s in a way I didn’t think I would.That’s something magic in itself.


Carmilla - Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu A classic vampire tale, read for a class. The first person address of the reader put me in mind of Poe. Enjoyable.

Odd and the Frost Giants (World Book Day edition)

Odd and the Frost Giants - Neil Gaiman, Mark Buckingham With all the magic of Gaiman's imagination, Odd and the Frost Giants takes you into a tale full of wonder and mystery - with a few Gods thrown in for good measure. Loved it!