Book Reviews: October 2020

Each month, I publish a “What I’ve Recently Finished Reading” post, so here’s a review of the books I’ve read during October.

As always, in no particular order…

The Minute I Saw You by Paige Toon, Simon & Schuster UK Ltd, 2020


Oh my! What can I say about this? I’ve got to say that I didn’t read the blurb on the cover, nor had I heard what the book was about so I came into it completely blind. I had no clue in what direction the story was going to go but I absolutely fell in love with Hannah and Sonny. I was eager to find out what both of their stories were and how that would affect their relationship moving forward.

I didn’t see either twist coming and found the stories exceptionally moving. My emotions were all over the place at times! I had a real lump in my throat towards the end as the book was so exquisitely written. I really didn’t want to put the book down but equally I was keen to eek out the story for as long as possible as I didn’t want it to end.

I’d highly recommend this, but be prepared for some twists and have your tissues at the ready!

I read a paperback copy of The Minute I Saw You.

Ten Times Happier by Owen O’Kane, Harper Collins Publishers Ltd, 2020


I don’t often read nonfiction books, so they won’t appear all that frequently in my reviews. However, I heard mention of this book several times on social media during a time when I was struggling mentally myself. I therefore decided that as I was struggling to see the wood from the trees myself, and as we were heading towards #WorldMentalHealthDay, I’d give this a go.

I will admit that I have not managed to read the whole book as yet. I’ve found it a struggle to read but I can’t put my finger on why. I know that I feel some of the sections aren’t applicable to me and I have not felt like the exercises are what I need. That’s not to say that they wouldn’t work for other people as I am absolutely sure they would.

I have found some really useful sections and there is certainly a lot that made me think “yep that’s me” and that I could put into practice in my own life to make me feel happier and less in conflict with myself. I will persevere and read through the rest and work out what to put in to practice and will definitely be taking something positive away from this read.

I read Ten Times Happier on Apple Books.

The Winter Garden by Heidi Swain, Simon & Schuster UK Ltd, 2020


I was eagerly awaiting the release of Heidi’s latest book and was pleased to get my hands on it the day after publication, although I didn’t start to read it straightaway. I’ve read a few of Heidi’s books and absolutely adored last Christmas’s publication so I was sure I would love this one too.

And I did!

It’s a lovely slow-paced novel – it doesn’t go at a hundred miles an hour so you don’t feel rushed through the story and you have time to get to know the characters. The story itself is sweet and romantic yet utterly believable and you’re drawn into the life of the garden. And of course there’s beautiful Nell whose story is interwoven with Freya’s, which is adorable. I love the fact that characters from previous books have little cameo roles too.

This is definitely a book to cosy up with on an autumn evening, with a cup of tea and your snack of choice.

I read a paperback copy of The Winter Garden.

All About Us by Tom Ellen, HQ HarperCollins Ltd, 2020


I cannot for the life of me remember where I saw this book first publicised (I’m pretty sure it was on social media, so either Twitter or Instagram) but it immediately looked like my kind of book so I thought I would give it a go. As is often the case for me, I am drawn in by the cover rather than anything else. I’m not sure if this is just a quirk of my reading material choices or whether other readers do the same but is usually always the first thing that draws me to a book.

My second “go to” for book selection is the author but I’d not heard of Tom Ellen before so he was a new one on me. I chose not to read the synopsis and based my selection solely on the publicity I’d read on social media (which was obviously really potent as I have no idea what it was), and the look of the front cover.

I was really not disappointed! I absolutely adored this book and struggled to put it down. In fact, it was one of the fastest reads this year. It was not at all what I was expecting it to be – as I’d not read the synopsis and knew nothing of the author I don’t know what I was expecting but it wasn’t what I got.

As I didn’t know what to expect, the twist of the story took me by surprise but as the story played out, I realised what a great plot it was. I was super keen to find out what happened and how the story ended, which is why I read the whole book in super quick time. I loved the easy flow of the story and the thought-provoking plot, certainly gave me plenty of “what if” moments! I’d definitely highly recommend this book and I am looking forward to find some more of Tom’s books to read.

I read All About Us on Apple Books.

What have you been reading recently? Please do let me have your recommendations in the comments below, as I’m always on the lookout for something new to read!

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