Reading Week Reads
From the creator of the much-loved Paddington, comes this exciting instalment in the Monsieur Pamplemousse series, featuring the food-guide-write-turned-detective Monsieur Pamplemousse and his loyal bloodhound, Pommes Frites. Monsieur Leclercq, head of the illustrious food guide, Le Guide, tasks Monsieur Pamplemousse with writing a play to highlight the need to reduce one’s carbon footprint by leading a healthy lifestyle. All hell breaks loose when disaster strikes and a renowned food critic vanishes. Monsieur Pamplemousse and Pommes Frites must save the day – and the future of Le Guide – by tracking down the food critic, one clue at a time. Ideal for all lovers of France, franglais and comedic detective fiction.
Five days after her graduation, Yale student Marina Keegan was tragically killed in a car accident, aged just 22. The ‘Opposite of Loneliness’ is a collection of both published and unpublished short stories and essays, dealing with topics that I feel are relevant to my life now, like the next step after university. It’s a thought provoking, detailed commentary of human observation, friendships and relationships, causing us to wonder what Marina could have achieved had she not died before her time.
Headscarves and Hymens
Headscarves and hymens is more than just a book. It’s a piece of extraordinary social commentary and something I think everyone ought to read. Did you know in Saudia Arabia it’s believed that women should not drive as it will ‘damage their ovaries’? Mona Eltahawy goes on to describe her youth and experiences that led her to unveil herself with references to the poets, sociologists and feminists who inspired her, many of whom I guarantee I will be looking up. Headscarves and hymens is an insightful and moving text that contributes a tremendous amount to the debates on gender equality, religious extremism and authoritarianism.
We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves was shortlisted last year for The Man Booker Prize and it deserves all the awards it has thrown at it. The blurb reads ‘What if you grew up to realise that your father had used your childhood as an experiment?’ Rosemary doesn’t talk about her whirlwind other half, her sister Fern, and her disappearance from her life when she was five. We are already exploding with questions when, 70 odd pages in, we learn that Fern is in fact not who we thought she was. Whether you work this out earlier on or not, the power of this book and the astute message about sibling love is agonisingly brilliant.
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