Recently Read no. 20

Recently Read
I can’t believe I haven’t written about books since last May. It’s not that I haven’t read anything since then, I honestly don’t know why I forgot to publish that post. But the good thing is, I haven’t got two or three books only to talk about today, I’ve got six! So that’s the number of books I've read, one per month. It’s not much, but I know you guys enjoy talking about books at least as much as I do so let’s dive in!

ratings

  • Unfiltered: 3/5
  • Commonwealth: 4/5
  • Love in a Cold Climate: 4/5
  • The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo: 5/5
  • Une Question D’Equilibre: 3/5
  • Rebecca: 4/5

Unfiltered: No Shame, No Regrets, Just Me, Lily Collins

I didn’t know much about Lily Collins before reading her book. I only knew the basics: a talented young actress with the best pair of eyebrows. In all seriousness, I really enjoyed seeing her in films and I wanted to get to know her a bit more. Unfiltered is like taking a peek into her life and when she writes « no shame, no regrets, just me » as the subtitle of her book, I think it’s fair to say Lily revealed really personal details about her dealing with anorexia, past relationships and her career.

I don’t really know what I was looking for reading that book, it was enjoyable but as with every other biography I’ve read lately, it didn’t particularly touch me nor did it make me see things differently (but maybe that wasn’t the point!).

Commonwealth, Ann Patchett

I picked up this book from Ann Patchett randomly in a Parisian bookstore and it didn’t disappoint. It’s really different from what I’m used to reading but I loved it nonetheless. Commonwealth follows the story of two families that end up being connected as the children become step-siblings. We learn a fair bit about all the characters, from their youngest age to being adults but the chronology isn’t linear at all. It’s quite disturbing and frustrating at first and then you finally connect the dots and it all makes sense. The writing style was really interesting and I liked the fact that it was a modern tale. I really want to read more of Patchett’s work now!

Love in a Cold Climate, Nancy Mitford

A follow-up to the incredible The Pursuit of Love I’ve reviewed some time ago. It’s almost as good as the first episode, the narrator stays the same, only at a different time in her life. She’s still telling the story of the people she meets more than her own, but I’m hoping the last book of the series, Don’t Tell Alfred, will be more focused around Fanny.

I love how witty Nancy Mitford’s books are and I can’t recommend this series enough if you like period dramas.

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, Taylor Jenkins Reid

You guys may be aware of my love for everything Taylor Jenkins Reid writes. Mostly chick-lit, but definitely well written. When I first read the pitch for her last novel The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, I thought maybe this one was going to be the book that would lessen my love for this author. But oh lord, how much I was wrong. The story is about top actress Evelyn Hugo and how she became Hollywood’s rising star while making her best to preserve her personal life at the same time as being exposed and giving the tabloids what they think they are after. But in truth, it’s about more than any of that. It’s about dreams, faith, love, sexuality, family and everything in between.

I loved how emotionally invested in Evelyn’s story it made me become, the characters were amazingly rich in terms of personality and wit. It’s funny because I’ve read it right before the Weinstein scandal came out and it’s totally how Hollywood is pictured. A lot of manipulation and men full of themselves who think they hold the keys to women’s careers.

Une Question D’Equilibre, Mathilde Lacombe

If you don’t know her, Mathilde Lacombe is a french beauty blogger/entrepreneur/mom of three that’s only two years older than me (thirty), eek!.
Creator of Joliebox that has later been acquired by Birchbox, she’s now the head of Birchbox France and a blogger I really respect as her willingness to surpass herself and stick to her dreams and ambitions is really inspiring.

In her newly released book, she talks about how she found balance in her everyday life and how juggling it all is all down to that. She shares stories about the entrepreneurial women she met in her career and what a day in her life looks like, while giving her tips and being honest about the fact that she can’t do it all without the support of her loved ones and that her life isn’t as glossy as Instagram makes it look like.

I was happy to read this book after getting it signed by Mathilde herself at the launch event, but as expected, it fell a bit flat at times. I don’t think I’ve learned anything more than what I had previously read on her blog or heard, the few times she was a podcast guest. The inside of the book is really pretty though and it was an enjoyable read.

Rebecca, Daphne Du Maurier

Ever since I spotted this beautiful hardcover edition in a London bookshop, I had Rebecca on my wishlist and after getting it for my birthday this October, I’m so glad I finally got round to reading this classic. You’re probably familiar with the story already but for what it’s worth, it’s about a newlywed couple that lives in Manderley, Maximilien de Winter’s property. Freshly titled Mrs de Winter, the narrator tries to find her feet in Maxim’s world, a man more than twenty years older than her. His first wife, Rebecca, died in tragic circumstances and her death is haunting Manderley and all its occupants.

Despite the fact that the ethics of the book was very questionable and the naivety of the young narrator was irritating at times, I really liked that book and how well written it was. At first troubling, I found it actually very clever when I figured out that the ending was in fact in the beginning! The first two chapters happen after the last one and give you clues without you even realizing it. A must-read if you like classics!

Recently Read


What have you been reading lately? Give me ideas for 2018!

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