BOOK BLOG: Chloe Coles

Bookshop Girl: funny, relatable and moving!

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“Bennett’s Bookshop has always been a haven for sixteen-year-old Paige Turner. It’s a place where she can escape from her sleepy hometown, hang out with her best friend, Holly, and also earn some money. But, like so many bookshops, Bennett’s has become a ‘casualty of the high street’ – it’s strapped for cash and going to be torn down. Paige is determined to save it but mobilising a small town like Greysworth is no mean feat.

Time is ticking – but that’s not the only problem Paige has. How is she going to fend off the attractions of beautiful fellow artist, Blaine? And, more importantly, will his anarchist ways make or break her bookshop campaign?”

Earlier this month (technically the end of July, but shush), when I was at YALC, I was lucky enough to listen to Chloe Coles in a panel all about being in the publishing world and hearing her talk about her book made me want to pick it up then and there! Chloe is HILARIOUS and I want her to be one of my real life friends because I am all about people that make me laugh in my life. Having met Chloe and spoken to her for a little bit, I knew had high hopes for this book… and let me tell you, it does not disappoint!

Bookshop Girl is the tale of Paige, a bookish teenager, who works in a bookshop that is being threatened to close down (art mimicking real life or what?!). Paige, along with the help of her best friend, sets it in her sights to save her shop. Oh, but it isn’t that simple… of course there’s a boy in the mix. A seemingly harmless boy. A very attractive young man who catches the eye of our leading lady. (Oh Paige!)

What I loved most about this book was that it showed in such a positive light what using your voice can do. Paige learns very quickly that using her voice, and using the voice of the people around her, can do really good things. There’s some really touching moments with Paige reaching out to authors for the people that she loves that made my heart so happy. Paige discovers some incredible supportive people in very unexpected places – these aren’t people that Paige would’ve expected to support her, yet here they stand, supporting her. There’s some brilliant messages in here about being an activist (on all scales) and standing up for yourself. There’s some brilliant messages about feminism in this book too. 

Despite the fact this book deals with some pretty hard hitting messages, it manages to be hilarious and relatable. Paige sees an injustice in the world around her and she does something about it, but obviously there are things that go awry. She’s a teenage girl. Life is never that simple to always go the way you want. However she is very lucky to be surrounded by people that love her. Her best friend is just lush. There’s scenes between them that I just adore (we’ve all been there, we all have our best friends who we can just be ourselves with). I would love to be Paige’s friend. 

I do not wish to spend much time on the subject of The Boy. I was lulled into a false sense of security with him, although I didn’t trust him. There was always something off with him. 

It’s so incredibly lush to read a book about bookish people, written by a bookish person. Chloe is a bookseller at Foyles in London, which I think adds a really special element to this book. 

What you get in this book is laughter, love and a sense of pride in the bookish community. I would recommend it for anyone who is after a laugh (or a lol as Chloe would say!) It’s such a lush book and I can not wait for book 2 to come out in September!

(I LOVE this cover so much… so colourful!)

My goodreads review reads:

Funny, relatable and brilliant. The power of books, libraries, bookshops told from a teenage girl. I just think this was great. Paige is hilarious. Many moments of lol were had.

Have you read Bookshop Girl?
Can you recommend any books like this?

Let me know in the comments what you thought of this review, your thoughts on the book or any recommendations you have for me! I love a book that will make me laugh! Bookshop Girl is available to buy now! 

S x

#SamplerSunday

This past weekend, my friend Kelly (over at Kelly’s Ramblings) decided we would get some of the samplers we got at YALC read! It was really tough choosing the 5 we would read but in the end we came up with these:

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(I was in my trusty Starbucks, at the window, as usual on a Sunday!)

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First up, we read Genuine Fraud by E. Lockhart. It was a great, very fast paced book. I was on edge the entire time reading the sampler! If the book is as fast paced as the sampler, I’m not sure my brain will be able to cope! The story seems to be very intriguing – a woman, who constantly changes her identity, running away from something and someone. The MC (Jule) is intense. I think she might be a polarising MC. I want to know more about her though, the glimpses we got I enjoyed. I will keep my eye out for this.

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Next, we read Clean by Juno Dawson. I love the look of this sampler! It was so hard to get a picture of though. The thing that struck me was the interesting dynamic between Lexi and her brother. He’s trying to help her. She’s mean and devious and doesn’t want his help, whereas he SEEMS TO BE just trying to help (blackmail does help!). Reading it I was interested and then her age is brought up and I was VERY interested. There’s quite a bit of swearing in this and I LOVED IT. This one definitely peaked my interest – I have so many questions: why is she addicted to drugs? What happened? I will definitely be buying this as soon as it comes out! 

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The third sampler we read was Tangleweed and Brine by Deirdre Sullivan. I picked this up after hearing her talk at YALC in the Fairytale panel and knew I needed to read it. I love a good fairytale. This one is based on one of my favourite fairytales of all time… one which is SO UNDERRATED – Rumplestiltskin. It took me a minute to get into it, but once I was in I was HOOKED. I loved that there was some back story and the illustration at the end was creepy and perfect. The other thing that struck me was that the girl in the story was imperfect: she has this incredible hair but she describes herself in such imperfect words. This is definitely one I’m going to be watching out for: it’s so atmospheric and beautiful that it needs to be in my life.

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Then we moved on to one of our faves, Holly Bourne. This sampler is of her new book It Only Happens in the Movies. Holly is one of my faves, she always gets it right and this sampler shows that this book should be very much of the same. There’s a brilliant speech by the MC in the sampler about women in films and it is so spot on that I wanted to cheer. Women in films are NEVER imperfect. Holly always gets this right. I really liked LouLou too. She seems like she’s going to be a great character. I have a suspicious eye on Harry. I can’t wait for this to be out in October. It’s going to be a good one. I can feel it in my bones. 

THE GRAND FINALE OF #SAMPLERSUNDAY.

For those of you who follow me on any of the social media you’ll know that Melinda Salisbury is my fave. When I heard there was going to be a sampler of her new (currently untitled) book #SorrowBook, I needed it. I needed it straight away. I have put off reading it because I knew that once I had read it, I would want to read the rest. And man was I right.

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I won’t embarrass myself by showing you the texts between Kelly and I, but suffice to say we absolutely adored and devoured this sampler. I was hooked in the first page. “A bridge built of starlight” just had me. I absolutely love Mel’s ability to instantly create a world: I always get sucked in. This world is no different. I know this is going to be an incredible book – I have a feeling there is going to be some MAJOR event happening in the book and that Sorrow will grow up to be quite the young woman. I am VERY EXCITED and March can not come soon enough. I could ramble on about this for hours. Just know I loved it and that you need to get your hands on it… if you can! (side note: I found out today it’s a duology and YAAAAAAAAAS)

Did you pick up these samplers at YALC?
What did you think of them?
Which of these 3 are you most excited about?

Let’s talk! I want to know your feels about these and any other samplers you picked up at YALC. Talk to me in the comments or on twitter! While you’re at it… take yourself over to Kelly’s post and see what she thought of these samplers – clicky click

S x

YALC haul

So… unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ll know that this year was my first year at YALC. If you’re curious as to what my highlights of YALC were then check out my 2 posts about it: YALC #1 and YALC #2. These posts were dedicated to my highlights… today’s post is dedicated to my haul. ALL OF THE BOOKS. I hope you’re ready!

Samplers
(These are snippets of books that are to be released in the future. Generally a chapter or two)

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Hole In The Middle – Kendra Fortmeyer
Spare and Found Pars – Sarah Maria Griffin
Fire Lines – Cara Thurlbourn
The Space Between The Stars – Anne Corlett
Sorrow – Melinda Salisbury
It Only Happens In The Movies – Holly Bourne
Floored – Sara Barnard, Holly Bourne, Tanya Byrne, Non Pratt, Melinda Salisbury, Lisa Williamson, Eleanor Wood

(also pictured: my gorgeous bag from Mel’s Books to Bags workshop… LOOK AT IT)

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Grave Matter – Juno Dawson
Clean – Juno Dawson
Hope – Rhian Ivory
A Shadowful of Shadows – Frances Hardinge
The Last Days of Archie Mazwell – Annabel Pitcher
Tangleweed and Brine – Deidre Sullivan

I AM SO EXCITED ABOUT SOME OF THESE. So so excited. Like I can’t wait for 2018 because SO MANY GOOD BOOKS. 

ARCs

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Blackbird – ND Gomes
The Truth and Lies of Ella Black – Emily Barr
There’s Someone Inside Your House – Stephanie Perkins
The Sacrifice Box – Martin Stewart
The Invasion – Paedar O’Guilin
The Arsonist – Stephanie Oakes

I wasn’t expecting to get so many ARCs! However, I was not leaving without The Invasion. Once I knew it was going to be given out, I NEEDED IT. So chuffed I got it. Can’t wait to read it!

Books I bought

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The Loneliest Girl In The World – Lauren James
(Early selling at YALC and I NEEDED TO GET ONE. Can’t wait to read this!)
One Italian Summer – Keris Stainton
(This was from my gorgeous friend Lizzie!)
Stolen – Lucy Christopher
(Someone in one of the queues recommended this to us, so Kelly and I had to buy it!)
Exodus – Julie Bertagna
(MyKindaBook were doing a ‘Mystery Book’ for £5, so I went for it! I have neither read nor heard of this, so I am excited to dig in!)

LOOK. I didn’t buy as many as I expected. And I didn’t even buy 2 of these! What a good human I am! I showed good restraint. 

So there you have it: my YALC haul. I’m sure there’s a few bits and bobs that I missed, but this is the vast majority of it!

What did you get at YALC?
Which of your books are you most excited for?
HOW EXCITED FOR FLOORED AND SORROW BOOK ARE YOU THOUGH?
(I may be a little excited)

Let me know in the comments, or on twitter! I would love to see your YALC hauls! 

S x