February Book Haul (send help please…)

I treated myself this month to a raid on charity shops. I’ve been doing quite well at college and I thought “treat yo self”. So I did.

Safe to say, me and my bank account are ignoring each other. Ignorance is bliss.

I also received my first Willoughby Book Club subscription this week! As if I wasn’t spoiled enough! I truly love how my surprise book arrived!

Books in the haul of February… ta daaa (someone has to confiscate my bank card please I beg you.)

Riding the Iron Rooster by Paul Theroux (Now this I bought purely because we study an extract from this travelogue in English Language and Literature A Level. Safe to say the title ‘Riding the Iron Rooster’ would not spark my interest under any other circumstances)

A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett (I REMEMBER WATCHING THE FILM OF THIS ON  V I D E O!!)

Structural Inorganic Chemistry by Wells (says what it does on the tin.)

A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens (this copy was BEGGING to be bought. Its currently living on my windowsill being pretty and old. I imagine Will Herondale reading this addition, woo-ing Tessa and the rest of the fandom into oblivion. If you know you know.)

Starter for Ten by David Nicholls

This Side of Paradise by F. Scott Fitzgerald (gotta love a bit of Fitz.)

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy by John Le Carré (MY GRANDAD LIKES THIS BOOKS SO I’LL GIVE IT A GO.)

A Doll’s House by Henrik Ibsen (I have no idea why I picked this up. Honest. I’ll let you know how it goes.)

Bridget Jones’s Diary by Helen Fielding (my nan told me to read it.)

Americana by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (I really wanted to read this as I have recently been admiring the author on her stance on feminism.)

The Woman in Black by Susan Hill (why not? Daniel Radcliffe is on the cover.)

Blood Brothers by Willy Russell (I’m taking one of my best friends to go and see this for her birthday next month!)

Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit by Jeanette Winterson (I spied this on my Auntie’s bookshelf and couldn’t help myself when I saw it today!)

The Lady in the Van by Alan Bennett (This is going to sound really weird by I am a huge fan of Bennett without reading a scratch of his work. He’s like a Northerner Grandad Teddy Bear. I watched the film of this on Christmas Eve and loved it as an English student. It left my dad a tad baffled though. Plus we’re studying an extract from his diaries in English as well.)

The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne (I’ve heard so much about this!)

The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey (The cover is pretty)

Room by Emma Donoghue (My best friend read this recommending it to me as it is a really interesting concept for a novel.)

The Lightning Tree by Emily Woof (This was my Willoughby Book Club book! I’m so excited!)


We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

I want to talk about this little book. This little 52 page book I bought off Amazon for £3. This little book has summed up all my feelings, issues and rants about the big things wrong with the world at the moment. 

We Should All Be Feminists is a personal, honest and clarifying essay which may be read and appreciated regardless of your education or social class. We Should All Be Feminists acts within any box you could be put into socially or economically, whatever your culture or religion. And that’s the beauty of it. It is a call for equality where no one can hide from it. 

The big issues which really stood out for me was the question of defining feminism. The stereotypes and baggage that title claims is rooted to the soul reason why we need it. 

Feminist: a person who believes in the social, political and economic equality of the sexes. 

“A Nigerian acquaintance once asked me if I was worried that men would be intimidated by me.

I was not worried at all- it had not even occurred to me to be worried, because a man who would be intimidated by me is exactly the kind of man I would have no interest in.”

I believe this book should be promoted in schools across the nation. Actually, to hell with the nation: across the world. 52 pages which could open the eyes of anyone asking the question of “what does being a feminist mean?” 

Even more so, teach it! This book originates from the TEDtalks organisation. The talk is 3 0 M I N U T E S   L O N G. That gives time for discussion after the lesson! A good 30 minutes more of hearing what people think and feel about a concept which is so greatly shaping our growing culture. Let’s have a debate. Let’s discuss other feminist talks, literature. Start asking questions! Are there any male feminist writers? Research them. Let’s learn about some cultural catalysts which are right under our noses. Share. Encourage young people to offer up ways in which they may relate to the issues raised in the talk. Spark confidence in those who never knew they had it.

From the moment I finished this book, essay, thing I’ve told my best friend. My aunt. I posted a quote on Snapchat and a vague distant friend sent me a message saying “WHAT BOOK IS THIS? I NEED IT!”  I watched the TEDtalk and loved it even more. So please go and watch it. Be enlightened. Enjoy having your mind blown a little. The link is below as well as my favourite extracts. 
“I was once talking about gender and a man said to me, ‘Why does it have to be you as a woman? Why not you as a human being?’ This type of question is a way of silencing a person’s specific experiences. Of course I am a human being, but there are particular things that happen to me in the world because I am a woman.”

“The problem with gender is that it prescribes how we should be rather than recognising how we are. Imagine how much happier we would be, how much freer to be our true individual selves, if we didn’t have the weight of gender expectations.”

We Should All Be Feminists- Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie TEDTALKS