As January begins to creep closer and closer towards us, I thought I would take this time to share with you the books I got for Christmas and during the Sales. I was very lucky this year and got so many lovely books that it seemed almost a cruelty not to share them with you.
First, I was very lucky while I was bargain hunting and came across these Wordsworth Classics for only £1.99 each. £1.99! It was just too good to miss. While I pride myself, as many Literature students do, that I have an obligatory love for Classics, I must admit my ‘love’ is more just isolated to a few (mainly Austen novels) that I just keep re-reading. So, when I spotted this deal I thought I would indulge in some classics, firstly because they were so cheap and it meant I can be a couple of books closer to recreating the library in Beauty and the Beast, and secondly because it gives me an excuse to try some new classics that I either just nod about because I’ve heard their names mentioned by hipsters in coffee shops or that lecturer that just won’t shut up, or have only watched the film adaptations of. Some of them are huuuuge beasts (look at ‘War and Peace’) so I doubt reading them all in 2017 is a likely New Year’s Resolution (not if I want to stay sane anyway) but it is at least a step in the right direction. I got these from Amazon (which I don’t like to do that much simply because I’d prefer to support small little book shops – and my mum is always reminding me that they are a bit selective when it comes to paying tax!) but I must admit I just couldn’t ignore the discount. I mean, come on, £1.99 for a book, especially books the size of ‘The Count of Monte Cristo’ which needs two hands to hold? Who could ignore it?
The next is a bit of a jokey present but I absolutely love it and it is this adorable adaptation of Charles Dickens’ ‘Oliver Twist’ – starring Guinea Pigs! Now I, like my entire family, am a huuuuugggee animal lover, and that definitely applies to Guinea Pigs. We’ve had them for years now – the two we have at the moment are little terrors but I love them – and they are just … so… darn…cute. I mean, look at their little mouths! Last year, I received the ‘Pride and Prejudice’ Guinea Pig version and it has sat on my bookcase centre stage all year so I was over the moon to open this on Christmas day. I really hope this becomes a tradition because I bloody love it! I don’t know how much I will be reading this but you can definitely be sure I will be continually opening them and cooing over the photos.
Next are more little bargains I found on Amazon during the sales. Last Summer (I believe) I picked up Kate Williams ‘England’s Mistress’ and I adored it. I’m not usually one to read historical biographies, always turning to historical fiction instead, but I was really surprised just how much I loved it, and loved everything about it, from the actually events described to the way they were delivered. I am now insanely protective of Emma Hamilton and always trying to push this book on anyone who might possibly read it (hence why it’s in this picture!) So while I was perusing the internet I noticed that the Amazon Outlet (which sells second-hand books) had two of her books for little more than a £1 each so grabbed them while I could. The first, ‘Becoming Queen’, is a historical biography on Queen Victoria and, having loved the Jenna Coleman series Victoria over the autumn and rekindled my love for the Victorians, I thought I would just have to get it. The truth is, apart from the fairy tale romance story that is Victoria and Albert, I don’t actually know much about her life so I’m looking forward to finding out more. The other, ‘The Pleasures of Men’, is a fiction written by Williams and, as I’ve said, I’m a sucker for a historical fiction.
For Christmas I was lucky enough to receive three hardbacks, which … I mean I could have got them out of the bookcase but I had just fought to put them in there and it was really difficult and I had just got all those Classics out and … well… I was too lazy, so I’ve just drowned them in fairy lights. That’s good enough, right? I have been wanting the gorgeous Montefiore’s ‘The Romanovs’ for so long and I am so happy that I was given it this Christmas. It’s a little bigger than I thought it would be (not that I’m complaining!) and is so much more beautiful in person – for real, this picture doesn’t do it justice. I mean it doesn’t do any of them justice but … ok, I’m lazy. I fell in love with the scandals surrounding the Romanovs during my time studying them at school, but that was always mainly around their hideous murders and the end of a dynasty. I’m looking forward to learning more about them and leaning a little further into their history. Plus, it’s really pretty! I also received Anna Kendrick’s ‘Scrappy Little Nobody’ which I’ve heard nothing but good things from so I can’t wait to start that. My parents also gave me ‘The Victoria Letters’ which was a real surprise but is another read I can’t wait to delve into.
So, yes, those are the gifts I received this Christmas, both from others and those I treated myself to. How about you? Are there any presents you’re particularly chuffed about?