Book reviews

Book Review: Am I Normal Yet?

Sometimes I think it is better to understand a situation through another person’s story or voice and that is precisely why I love reading fiction. The glimpse that it gives into another life, city, moments or situations help us gain perspective.

Am I normal yet by Holly Bourne
“Am I normal yet” by Holly Bourne

Sometimes I really go through the reviews of a book before making my purchase because you really do not want to end up with a badly written novel. Yeah those exist! Even though the story might be interesting, but it just spoils the whole mood. Anyhow, more often than not, as soon as I enter a bookshop I lose all sense and forget about all the good novels still on my TBR list and end up just picking something randomly. One such fine day, led me to purchase this wonderful novel by Hollyy Bourne: Am I Normal Yet?

It is the story of a typically 16, teenage girl named Evie who has made a fresh start at a new college. Her preoccupations lie with her friends, boys and college which lead to adding another layer in the story which is quite interesting and very amazingly put. We often confuse our thoughts with our reality and it is all the more difficult for someone with a mental disorder such as anxiety or OCD.

I haven’t read any other novels by Bourne but her voice seems to be very honest and raw. She has put the narrative in a very understandable, and authentic way without either diminishing its importance or sensationalizing it. It will help people to see a mental disorder in the right light and refrain from punishing or ignoring them. If you’re up for a bumpy novel, and want some insight into OCD, I suggest you pick this one up!

Have you read it? Come lets talk about it.

Have you read something similar? Give me a suggestion I am all ears.

Book reviews

Real Life Lessons from Fictional Books

From as long as I can remember I have been a reader. An avid reader of anything I could get my hands on. From newspaper articles to children’s fiction and since then it has been an uphill journey of devouring most kinds of fictional books.

Inspiration from fiction books

I remember my first book outside the Children’s category that i read was in grade 6 and it was Dan Brown’s “The Da Vinci Code” and then later I read all of HP books like a fanatic (which avid reader didn’t? please step aside if you didn’t). Stepping into the world of fiction is like being hooked to drugs, just can’t get enough of it. There has to be a book at all times by my bedside, and in my purse, (you never know when tragedy (read:boredom) strikes and you need them).

Over the years I’ve learnt and realized that fictional books can also teach us so much and address real life problems in a way that we can relate to them. Lately some great fiction has been in print and I’d love to share with you all my discoveries. So here goes:

-If you want to understand OCD , read “Am I normal Yet?

-If you want to gain perspective on domestic abuse, read “It Ends With Us

-If you want to understand the complexities in emotions and relationships due to being unable to conceive, read “All your Perfects

-If you want to understand abuse and loneliness, read “Eleanor Oliphant is Fine

-If you want to take a glimpse at loss, loneliness and love, read “A man called Ove

Tell me, have you read any of these? Are these on your TBR list? If not drop everything and get to reading them. You’ll love them and gain perspective too!

Book reviews

Book Review: All Your Perfects

Some novels are so beautifully written that they literally break your heart, and Colleen Hoover is one such writer that knows how to spill a story, such that it would break your heart and also mend it. She makes you feel everything so intensely that by the end of it you feel like you’ve been on a roller coaster, and yet you’re not ready to get off it.

Book review All your perfects by Colleen Hoover
All Your Perfects by Colleen Hoover

The first novel that I read by Colleen was, “It Ends With Us”, and I was in love with her by the end of it. I could not get that story off of my mind till days and I still quote it or talk about it whenever and wherever the subject pops up. So while exploring other books by her I came across “All Your Perfects” and really, it blew me away. The intensity of every scene, the emotions of all the characters involved, all of it kept me on the edge. I could feel every word, every feeling because it was just THAT BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN.

Colleen has many other novels to her name, to be specific eleven novels and five novellas so far with her debut novel being “Slammed” that came out in 2012. But the novel that caught a lot of attention was “It Ends with Us” and rightfully so! However, here, let’s talk about “All Your Perfects” and I’ll try without giving much away of the story.

So Quinn and Graham are the perfect couple in a perfect marriage who met courtesy of their cheating partners. Talk about good coming out of a bad situation *eye roll*. However, seven years later their perfect marriage is not so perfect anymore and it has become nothing less than a misery, but for who? Is Quinn wrong or Graham who can’t take it anymore? Will they be able to get through it or fall apart too soon in their supposedly forever marital bliss? Colleen’s story telling style is too beautiful to ignore and all I can say is if you really want a read to immerse all your feelings, emotions and senses in, then this is a must read for you!

Tell me when you read it or if you have already read it? I would love to talk about it!

Book reviews

Book Review : Reclaim Your Heart

How many of us feel lost at some point in our life?

We love life when all is going well, or shall I say how we expect things to go but what happens when things don’t really go our way or we are faced with unexpected hurdles. We start questioning everything and lose hope, when in reality that shouldn’t be a believer’s attitude.

We think the good that comes to us is because of our doing (our hard work and focus) and the bad is God sent. Why would God want something bad for us? Why would he want us to fail? We question our existence on this earth and we question the stones in our path. We become dejected and depressed many a times in our life and fail to find answers.

In “Reclaim your Heart”, writer and scholar, Yasmin Mogahed, beautifully pens down the answers to these questions and all others. She sheds light on the attitude of a believer and why He is here on this earth. She tries to tell us the reason of our existence and through beautiful analogies explains the reality of this world, this duniya. She explains why we feel so hurt when we do and how we can lift ourselves from our state of sadness.

In many places in the Quran, God makes promises to His believers, tells them to be patient in times of distress, stay firm on their faith and reminds them of the reality of this life. The fact is that we tend to forget. If we remain attached to the book of God, I guarantee you that you will be reminded of His promises to us and of the reality of this world but in our busy lives we find not the time for it. It is the reality of today’s times. However, we must strive for better in our capacity.

I have read “Reclaim your Heart” once before and this Ramzan I am reading it again because it serves as such a great reminder of the truth. To me this book really helps uplift the sad/confused mood. If you haven’t read it yet, please do give a read and if you have let me know how you found it!

It has short chapters with easy to read text that is understandable and wherever applicable there are Quranic references for reference and guidance.

God bless!