Tag: Birthday

James Frey – A Million Little Pieces | Review

Title: A Million Little Pieces

Author: James Frey

Type: Non-Fiction

Page Count: 518

Rating: 4.25/5

I was given this as a birthday present from someone who’d read it themselves and enjoyed it and who’d seen that it was on my ridiculously large want to readlist. I don’t actually get given books that often because more often than not, I end up resenting them because I feel as though I have to read them whether I want to or not. But as this was off my big old list, we dodged that problem.

I think I first heard about this on BookTube, although I can’t remember who was talking about it. It basically instantly went on to my wish list because it’s a non-fiction drug book and I’ve always been partial to books about drugs. I even quite like it when you get references to opium in stuff like The Wizard of Oz, when Dorothy falls asleep in a field of poppies.

Because I find the subject matter interesting, I was pretty much guaranteed to like this one. However, there are some other factors that come into play too. For example, the dialogue is written without quotation marks or indeed any form of punctuation, which some people might offputting. It’s the first thing I noticed when flicking through it and that, combined with a blurb from Irvine Welsh on the back, made me think it might be a tricky read. It turns out to actually work better and to flow more smoothly like that.

I guess that’s because of the style of the book. It’s written as a sort of stream-of-consciousness memoir and reads as though Frey is just chatting to you at a bar, and so this style of punctuation is perfect. At the same time though, I’m sure it’s not quite to everyone’s tastes, and that’s okay. And besides, if you like drug stories but you can’t deal with the punctuation, there’s always the movie version, which I’ll probably watch at some point or another.

Other than that, I’m not sure that there’s much more that I can tell you. I think as long as you have an interest in the subject matter – that of a recovering addict trying to get clean – and you don’t mind dialogue when it’s oddly formatted, you’re in for a treat. I will say that he spends the majority of the book either thinking about drugs or wishing he was dead, and so it can sometimes feel a little samey, but that can’t really be helped due to the subject matter and you have to respect the honesty.

Overall then, I’d definitely recommend this one, especially if you have an interest in drug and addiction memoirs. Otherwise, if you’re worried about trigger warnings or if it just makes you unhappy to read about stuff like this then maybe give it a miss. You’d be missing out on a good read, but it’s also a difficult one that can be quite confrontational too. As for me, I’m glad that I read it. A good gift!

Learn more about A Million Little Pieces.

 


Henry Firth and Ian Theasby – Bish Bash Bosh! | Review

Title: Bish Bash Bosh!

Author: Henry Firth and Ian Theasby

Type: Non-Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 290

Rating 4.25/5

This is the second Bosh! cookbook that they’ve released, and I enjoyed the recipes in the first book so much that I asked for the second one for my birthday. I’m lucky in that I have a super awesome girlfriend, and so she bought me a signed copy – although the cynic in me suspects that she just wanted me to cook for her. But that’s okay and I’m cool with that.

In case you didn’t get the memo, Bosh is a YouTube channel that specialises in making videos about vegan food. In this cookbook, they share all kinds of awesome recipes spanning a range of different cuisines, and I picked up everything from starters and desserts to bad ass mains, and in fact I ended by making roast stuffing balls, nut roast and quick onion gravy. It was delicious.

I tend to measure my recipe books based on how many of the recipes I take away with me and put into my overall master list of recipes. This book gave me a good 20+ recipes that I took away for good, and that compares to two or three from some other books that I could (but won’t) mention. And because my copy was a limited edition, it was also signed and included six bonus recipes, two of which in particular I was a fan of.

My only criticism would be that a lot of the recipes have already appeared on their YouTube channel. There were a few in here that I already had because of that, but I can live with that. Yum yum.

Click here to buy Bish Bash Bosh!.

 


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