The Unmumsy Mum

Unmumsy-Mum-Book-ReviewBook of the week is recommended by Ms Johnson who advises us to read ‘The Unmumsey Mum’ By Sarah Turner:

The book is a window to a particular life stage. At times it is laugh out loud funny, crushingly accurate and emotionally uplifting. Charting the ups and downs of parenting a young family in this crazy, modern world. Reading the book is like going for a coffee with your closest friend – it is therapy in a pink cover!

We Should All Be Feminists

bookMrs Cousins recommends ‘We Should All Be Feminists’ by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie 

You should read it because… it is a short but really powerful message about gender equality.  A multi award wining author, Adichie has had a huge audience – her TEDx talk that the book was adapted from has been watched by 3.4 million people on YouTube and she was sampled by Beyoncé on ***Flawless.

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is also one of my favourite novelists – Half Of A Yellow Sun, Americanah and Purple Hibiscus are all brilliant.

The whole text can be read here for free.

Or you can listen to the TEDx talk here.

The Exam

1This week’s book recommendation is from Ms Anderson:

The Exam by Andy Hamilton (Writer of the TV shows Outnumbered and Drop the Dead Donkey)

The Exam is a comedic insight into the pressures put on young people by parents and teachers. Andrew, Chas and Bea are three students of mixed ability who find themselves held up in the same exam hall waiting for their papers to arrive. As the wait lengthens, each has to survive a powerful barrage of self doubt, parental pressure and adult incompetence. They must come to terms with themselves, their peers and parents. An enjoyable read which I’m sure all teachers can relate to and sympathise with.

The Night Circus

The Night CircusThis week’s book recommendation comes from Mrs Jansen, who recommends ‘The Night Circus’ by Erin Morgenstern: I would recommend The Night Circus, The Prose sparkle and the story itself is a feat of magical acrobatics! 2 ancient magicians set their 2 best pupils against one another in a magical contest, the venue is a mysterious circus that only appears at night. There are no rules and the contestants do not know how victory is determined. They inevitably fall in love and things get very complicated. The book is beautifully written and keeps you gripped throughout.

The Outsider

`Book of the week is recommended by Mr Hutton: ‘The Outsider’ by Albert Camus.

“I found this book in a job lot for a few pence. It turned out I had a classic written by the French author Albert Camus. I read it through in a few sittings on holiday.’The Outsider’ is about a French Algerian, Mersault, a man who seems emotionally detached from the events of the world around him and whose life in the pleasant Mediterranean sun is dramatically changed by a tragic chain of events.The novel is both simple and profound, thought provoking and haunting; well worth the read. “

Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close

Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close

This week’s book recommendation is from English teacher Mrs Wilson-Head.

The book that I would recommend to others is Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer. The novel is narrated from the perspective of Oskar Schell, who loses his father in the 9/11 attacks, and is seeking a way to stay close to him. Whilst hiding in his parents’ wardrobe, he discovers a key and, thinking that it is a final puzzle set for him by his father, Oskar sets out to discover the lock that it opens. The book is an incredibly moving one, which explores the nature of trauma and grief, both personal and collective. The events of 9/11 become a backdrop for an analysis of human nature and family, and I loved the way that Foer looked at these things through the voice of the nine-year-old protagonist. The book is also filled with unusual stylistic and graphic elements that really appealed to me. It wasn’t hugely popular with critics – and the film adaptation is horrendous – but I personally love the book, and have revisited it several times.

This week Mr Young shares his top 3 favourite books

My 3 favourite books are The Great Gatsby, Brideshead Revisited and Bright Lights, Big City.

All 3 share the same story of a young, likeable hero drawn into a society that is above them in some way but which intrigues and excites and then ultimately spits them out into the real world with a new perspective born of their experience.

Flowers for Algernon

flowers of algernonThis week’s book recommendation is from Mr Astbury:

The book I recommend is Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes.

The story begins with the concept that Algernon is a laboratory mouse who has undergone surgery to increase his intelligence by artificial means. The story is told as a series of progress reports written by a man named Charlie Gordon, the first human test subject for the surgery, and it touches upon many different ethical and moral themes such as the treatment of the mentally disabled. The book uses some words to describe Charlie that are no longer deemed acceptable but you have to put that aside as a show of time and not a modern author being insensitive. It employs a very clever use of literacy that you only have to read the first few chapters to understand and appreciate.

The Sense of an Ending

TheSenseofanEndingThis week’s book recommendation is from English teacher Ms McKay:

I recommend ‘The Sense of an Ending’ by Julian Barnes. Winner of the Booker Prize in 2011, ‘The Sense of an Ending’ is a book I’ve read three times now. It is narrated by Tony Watson, a man in his sixties, who reflects back on previous events of his life, and in particular one key event involving a lost love and a recently acquired diary. What begins as a seemingly ordinary look back at school and teenage memories quickly becomes something much more interesting and mysterious. It is a novella about the ambiguity of memory and self-reflection. Prompted by hearing about the suicide of an old school friend Tony begins to question his irresponsible actions as a teenager and discovers a terrible tragedy which is both shocking and difficult for us as readers to understand exactly who was responsible.

American Gods

514BzvkfaqLThis week’s book recommendation is from Miss Grayson:

‘American Gods’ by Neil Gaiman is like nothing I’ve read before; the writing is gripping from the beginning and I really got involved in the world of make believe that Gaiman portrays. I would describe it as a fairy tale for adults but it seems strangely current. If I tried to describe the book or what happens it would sound ridiculous so just give it a go. The book is currently being made into a film and it will be interesting to see what they can do with it. I loved the book and have read it twice since I was given it as a gift (last Christmas). I recommend this book to anyone that enjoys reading and wants to try something different but amazing.