Top 10: Books

Everyone that knows me in real life would probably say that I'm a crazy girl who reads way too much. I can't exactly agree with that statement, but I can't deny it either.

During the school year (which for me in Slovenia is from September to June) I'm busy as hell; I've got so much work involving music and practically school itself that I can't bring myself to reading even those books we have to read for certain classes and I can barely make myself read anything else but textbooks and stuff. 

But when the end of school arrives (and that's the time when I'm bored the most), I read a lot. Me and my family have got over 500 books in our house and we keep on buying or receiving them obsessively. We could practically start a library and summer's usually the time when we spend the whole day in bed doing nothing but reading, sleeping and eating. 

So, inspired by the video made by Carrie Hope Fletcher (the link to her video is down below), here are my top 10 books!

10.  His Dark Materials by Phillip Pullman

This is a book series of three separate books that's happening in an universe that looks like ours but isn't. Every person has a daemon (pronounced "demon") with them, which is practically a certain animal. The daemon is a part of its owners' soul and the owner can't live without it. People also have some special powers and things like that and also, parallel universes exist.
The first book focuses on the story of a girl called Lyra. She goes to school in England and has a lot of friends, one of them is called Roger. One day, Roger goes missing and Lyra begs the school to do something about it, but they don't, so she decides to go and find him. She leaves the school and walks around London by herself, until she's attacked by some strangers. A group of gypsies saves her and it's there that she meets some extraordinary people and she realises that she's not so ordinary herself.

The second book focuses on the story of a boy called Will who lives in a world without any daemons. He has a dark secret; he accidentally killed his mother at home and what has he got left? Nothing. He decides to run away with a special dagger that he has. With that dagger he can travel to parallel universe where he meets a girl who's looking for someone.
In the third book, everything happening in every single parallel universe collides and all the stories connect.
It's a brilliant book series, I can't stress it enough how much I've enjoyed reading those. I fell into reading the books when I was about 11, I think and they're still those books that I'll continue returning to. It's a must read, if you haven't read them or seen the absolutely brilliant film, then I'm judging you.                                                           

9. How I Live Now by Meg Rosoff

I've read How I Live Now about a couple of years ago when my sister bought it on our first family trip to Scotland and I quite liked the story and this is also a book that I keep on returning to, because you can relate to it. 
The story is happening in the present, but not quite as we know it. The world is brought to another World War and before the war broke out, a girl called Daisy was sent from her home in America to her cousins in England. She is expected by a slightly-weird pack of cousins; Osbert, twins Edmond and Isaac and Piper and their mother Penn. Daisy got along with the girl, Piper, the best, but she had an eye for Edmond and he had an eye for her. When the war broke out and aunt Penn got shot on a peace conference in Oslo, the children had to survive on their own without any adults by their side. By time, Osbert joined the army, the social services separated Edmond, Isaac, Piper and Daisy and they had to learn how to survive by themselves. 
This book is just... amazing. I have no words for it but amazing. It's a love story, but love isn't the main subject of the book. It's more a book on survival and dealing with panic and dangerous situations. If you can get it anywhere, then this is a definite must-read for anyone. 

8. Angus, Thongs and Full Frontal Snogging & It's OK, I'm Wearing Really Big Knickers by Louise Rennison

OK, this book isn't as dramatic or something as the previous books, but it's the most hilarious thing I've ever read. This is a series of two books and it's kind of Bridget Jones for younger people. Before you start judging me, I can assure you that you'll wet yourself of laughter, because it's just amazingly true in my opinion. It understands teenage hormones and stuff like that. 
The main character of the story is Georgia, a typical British middle-class girl, fourteen going on fifteen. In the first book, she falls seriously in love for the first time with an older boy called Robbie and she tries her absolute hardest to get him and she does. They date for a while in secret until her mother and father announce that they're going to move to New Zealand, where her father works and that brings us to the second book and it gets even more hilarious. She tries to convince her parents not to move to NZ and she also gets dumped by the guy she loves and then it's full of little quirky plans how to get him back based upon Men Are From Mars and Women Are From Venus. 
I can't tell you how much I laughed when I read this book. It was given to me as a present and I can't thank that girl enough for giving it to me. It's one of those books where you don't really need to think too much, but you won't skip any words because it's just... epic. If you can get a hand on one of these, then do. Full of typical British humour. Read it. NOW!
(or if you're too lazy, there's a film based upon both of those books, called the same as the first book. I watched it only because of Aaron Johnson. Just saying.)

7.  The Secret Life Of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd

I've read a lot of books that were introduced to me through films and I freaking hate that and this book is also one of them. 
Lily is a 14 year old girl, who lives with her father and their black slave Rosaleen, and she has a deep secret. When she was four years old, her mother was trying to escape her cruel husband and she had a gun hidden in her wardrobe and that was exactly where Lily was hiding. In the attempt of trying to give it to her, she pulled the trigger and it set off and her mother died. Fast forward 10 years and it's 1964, the time when black people were given the right to vote. In the state of South Carolina, people don't agree with it and when Rosaleen tries to sign up for voting, a couple of people put her in prison for no obvious reason. Lily's father doesn't do a thing about it and Lily decides to break her out of jail. She succeeds and they run away from home. They seek refuge at the house of the Boatwright sisters in Tiburon and it's there that Lily starts to discover her mothers' life before marriage and comes to terms with what she's done 10 years ago. 
The books is amazingly well written. The descriptions are amazing and the characters are very relatable. I have no other words for it but brilliant. Also a must-read. 

6. A Room With A View by Edward Morgan Forster

Time for some classical literature. It isn't annoying or boring or anything, but it's very light and generally beautiful. 
Set in two locations, this is a type of novel that makes you feel warm and fuzzy inside. Lucy Honeychurch (played by Bellatrix Lestrange in the 1986 film) is travelling Italy and is currently staying in Florence in an average pensione with her cousin and chaperone Charlotte Bartlett (a.k.a. Profesor McGonagall). The pensione is full of British tourists and there they meet their old friend and vicar Mr. Beebe who's going to take over the church in Lucy's home town. They also meet Mr. Emerson and his son George who's Lucy's age and a novelist Eleanor Lavish (a.k.a. M). Because of Mr. Beebe they enjoy each other's company quite a lot and one day decide to go out of Florence to the countryside for a picnic. Lucy meets George somewhere in private and after Charlotte sees them kissing, they quickly return back to Florence under the lie that "Lucy is feeling unwell" and the other day they're gone. They escaped to Rome, where she meets her fiancĂ©e, Cecil Vsye (or Daniel Day Lewis, whatever you like). They return to England together and it's where the past starts to haunt her in the form of the Emersons' coming to Summer street, where Lucy lives. 
Probably the best classical literature I've ever read and I've read many. You can get these in any library or in any bookshop you want, just get a hand on one of these. An absolute must read. And I can only praise the 1986 film. It's just amazingly well done and the acting is brilliant and I'm a sucker for Puccini (the composer) so I'm a happy girl whilst watching it. 

5. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

I've read this book whilst I was on my holiday. They've recently translated to Slovenian and when I saw it in the library, I thought this couldn't be the one I've heard so much about over the internet, but it was and I had to get it.
This whole story is about a little girl called Liesel who lives in Nazi Germany. The book starts with her being driven to her new parents, because her mother gave her up. She comes into the house of the Hubermann family and gets along with her new father a lot and basically, she's getting used to her new life and she also
steals books from book burnings, richer people and so on.
Her life is going amazingly well until one day a Jewish boy knocks on the front door and asks them for their help. He's the son of the man that saved Liesel's father's life in World War I and Hans decides to help him straight away and what he doesn't know is that there will be an unbreakable bond made between Liesel and Max, the Jewish boy and that it'll make their life a lot more complicated.
I am being completely serious, I had to hold back my tears because I have no idea how such a young person could write such an emotional book and make it so touching and just... Amazing. I gave it to my mother to read it and she said it was brilliant as well and I suggest you give it a go, because it's absolutely amazing and I love it.

4. The Girl With The Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevailer

I don't think I can resist a romantic novel every now and again and this one is quite good and it's about one
of my favourite paintings, so it's another plus.
The Girl With A Pearl Earring is about Johannes Vermeer and his family of seven who lived in the Dutch town of Delft in the 17th century. A lot of people have been speculating about who this girl on his painting is and the author made up a story for which we do not know if it's true or not.
The main character of the story is a young servant Griet who comes to work in the house where the Vermeer family lived. She had to go to work because her father who was very well known for making those little blue and white tiles had an accident and couldn't work anymore, so she had to bring some money to the house. When she worked in their house, the painter was very fascinated by her and her interest for colours and how she arranges them when she's preparing the vegetables for the soup and things like that. He lets her stay with him in the studio when he's painting (and he was a hell of a slow painter) and asks her for her opinion and other various things. They bond over art and form a relationship that shouldn't be happening in the first place. One day he decides to paint her as the girl with the pearl earring and then the story begins to unfold.
There's also a film made by this book starring Scarlett Johannson and Colin Firth and it's quite good. Not a typical film you'd expect from those two actors, especially with Scarlett being a complete bamf in The Avengers, but never mind that.
I definitely recommend this book, because it contains quite a lot of information about Vermeers' family life and also, there's stuff about art that I had no idea about.
The painting itself is kept in the Dutch city of Haag (a lovely town, by the way, I've been there) and it's in the Mauritshuis Museum. The tickets to the place were quite cheap and I'd definitely say you take a look around the place.
Otherwise, the book is a must-read. Definitely.

3. The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis

The Chronicles of Narnia is a series of books and it starts with a war-time story of four children (and also some others) who are sent out of London to the countryside. One day when they were playing hide and seek around the house, the youngest girl called Lucy (oh look, another Lucy!) decides to hide in a wardrobe and discovers a brand new world called Narnia, ruled over by the White Witch (played by Tilda Swinton in the film). When she tells this to her brothers and sister, they don't believe her, but when they're forced to hide away from an unpleasant situation, they have to hide in the wardrobe and they find out that Lucy wasn't lying. After that, they're forced to fight against the White Witch and the story continues. That's the plot for The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe.
One thing about Narnia is that there are more stories happening all at once and I'm not too sure of the correct order myself. I know that after The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe comes the Prince Caspian bit and then The Voyage of The Dawn Treader but then I'm lost.
The reason that I bought the books in the first place was because I got a huge poster of Prince Caspian along with it and I liked that very much. It was hanging on the door to me and my sister's room but then when we moved the poster got torn apart and I cried like a baby. It was probably the best decision I've ever made. Buying the book with the poster, not tearing it apart, obviously.

2The Harry Potter Saga by J.K. Rowling 

Honestly, these two book series are my favourite ones in existence and I couldn't chose which one's better
or something, so they're both in one place. If you've been living under a rock for the last 15 years, then here's a brief explanation of Harry Potter.
Harry Potter is a series of books about a little boy who's a wizard and lives with his aunt, uncle and cousin in Surrey. When he's eleven, he receives a letter that he's been accepted to a school of wizardry, and because his "family" hates him, they send him off to this school of magic, where he meets two best friends (Ron and Hermione, a.k.a. a lot more magical and beautiful version of me) and also some idiots (not naming anyone... Draco). This school is supposed to be a safe place and all that, but he has many adventures there that are also life threatening and almost each and everyone of them (except for the third book) involve his mortal enemy, Voldemort. Even when he was a baby, he met him and survived the one enchantment that nobody should. The Avada Kedavra curse, of course.n
You don't have a clue how embarrassed I was when I had to write a short summary of the books, because I just feel like everyone knows what Harry Potter is on about.
If you haven't read those, then I'm deeply disappointed with you. 

1. The Fault In Our Stars by John Green

Like, do I need to say anything about this book? This is the one book that I'll probably return to for my
whole life, it's just... perfect. 
Hazel, a sixteen year old girl, has been suffering from cancer ever since she was eleven. She was getting better with a cure, made up by the author and her mother made her go to collage and take a few classes and also, go to a cancer support group. It was a nice thought, but not what Hazel would like to do with her afternoons. It's there that she meets a boy called Augustus Waters, who suffered from cancer (and lost a leg because of it), but got better and has been clean for 14 months. Over time, they bond over a book called An Internal Affliction or AIA and the one thing about the book is that it ends in the middle of a sentence and they don't find out what happens in the end. So, they travel to the Netherlands and meet the author and he doesn't want to tell them anything, because he's basically an idiot who drinks too much. But that didn't stop them from having fun (in the limited amount, but still). They fall in love and Augustus chose to tell her that the cancer is reoccurring over his entire body and that's when it all goes downhill for both of them and their relationship. 
I cried a lot while reading this, but it's amazingly written and seriously, this guy has a talent for writing. I haven't read his other books yet (because TFIOS is the only one of his books in Slovenia) but I'm definitely looking forward to reading the others (especially because one has my name in it, so yeah).

And that's about it. I love my books terribly and I'm sure I've written "it's a must-read" at almost every single book, but they're all soooo good! If you're anything like me, then you'll spend your summer reading a lot and if you'll read a book from up there, then I'm glad you decided to do so. Also, I'm not responsible for any mental scaring that the books may have caused.

xxx Katherine

Here's Carrie's video!


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