I’m a little nosey, and I often like browsing through other’s bookshelves, particularly to see what kind of genres they like, or what series/collections they own.
With that said, I think a lot of others like doing it too, and if you’ve looked through some of my book reviews, then you know that I love YA (so there is no need for a genre post). So I thought, why not do a tour of the series and collections that I have in my bookshelf? Even though I don’t actually have a bookshelf (sacrilege, I know) – my books are just in alphabetically ordered piles on the floor.
So, here it is – a tour of my book series/collections. Enjoy!
DELUXE EDITION PENGUIN CLASSICS
This stunning trio are Deluxe Edition Penguin Classics (of which there are many more), each cover designed by artist extraordinaire Rubin Toledo. I was mesmerised by their gothic wispiness, and incredible detail, and HAD to have them. Small confession: I have yet to read any of these novels. I know, I know – a literature lover that has yet to read Pride and Prejudice; colour me ashamed. But I promise that both Pride and Prejudice and Jane Eyre are high on my TBR pile (that has, admittedly, grown taller than me). Sorry Emily – I have read half of Wuthering Heights, I just couldn’t quite bring myself to carry on. Maybe one day.
HIS DARK MATERIALS
His Dark Materials is an outstanding trilogy that I would consider a must read – though admittedly, I have problems with that phrase. I was late to the party (realising at 18 that The Golden Compass is a terrible injustice) but fell unreservedly in love with this trio – a trio that is, at heart, a children’s tale, but is also a tale of corruption, greed, and innocence. If you like epic adventure with a lot of grit, outstanding world-building, and incredibly complex characters, this is the series for you.
PENGUIN ENGLISH LIBRARY
My Penguin English Library collection is my pride and joy – a little bit of an exaggeration, but it has all of my heart (and some of my money). I adore these editions – the colours, the print, the way that they look when grouped together. And they are extremely affordable, at only £5.99 a book (and often on offer at buy one get one free). This is my collection thus far – lots of my favourite novelists (Dickens, Hardy and Austen), and books I desperately want to read (The Picture of Dorian Grey and The Scarlett Letter). I can’t wait to continue building it when I have a little more money.
SIDE NOTE: Yes, I do have two copies of Jane Eyre… a book I have not yet read. I have issues.
A COURT OF THORNS AND ROSES
If you spend more than one minute on bookstagram, you will know that the A Court of Thorns and Roses novels are another must read. I admit, I was not a friend of fantasy, but (shortly after the release of A Court of Wings and Ruin) everyone seemed obsessed with Maas, and so I thought why not, and purchased all three. A bold move that I did not regret, as I devoured all three in days, and was left speechless. These novels will tear you apart – adventure, characters I cannot begin to describe due to my sheer amazement, epic twists, spellbinding battles (literally), and DID I MENTION THE CHARACTERS? If you want a series that will consume you, this is it.
I have oodles of time for John Green – as an individual, and novelist. Without him, I don’t know that I would have pursued my passion for writing to the extent that I have, and I certainly don’t think that I would have discovered my love of writing YA. Because of this, and the kindness and empathy I have gained from lessons learned in these novels, I am really proud (and wanted to show off) this little collection.
If you think you’d like to start reading some of John’s work, then I recommend starting with Paper Towns – admittedly, it is no longer my favourite, but it’s an easy, wonderful, heartwarming read. The rest you can browse in any order, but make sure to give Turtles All the Way Down the appreciation that it deserves, for it’s brutally honest depiction of mental illness – it really is quite set apart from the soft, gentility of his other writing, but still has the heart and warmth that I’ve grown to love.
Did I mention he tweeted me the day of its release? I still can’t believe that’s a thing that happened.
The Chaos Walking trilogy is the latest series that I have adored – though I have yet to read Monsters of Men. There is not a moment of calm in The Knife of Never Letting Go and The Ask and the Answer, each novel a whirlwind from beginning to end, and it is a heady blend of exhilarating and epic. If you are a fan of adventure novels, with young, daring leads, and a world that will frighten and mesmerise you in equal measures, I would highly recommend this series.
I am, after reading, ever so slightly concerned about the adaptation. Though I adore Tom Holland and Daisy Ridley, Todd and Viola are very young, and Tom and Daisy are, well, not (though they do look rather young). I hope that, if they have aged them slightly, it doesn’t take away from the youthful innocence that adds so much to this series.
Did I say that my Penguin English Library Collection was my pride and joy? Well, my other pride and joy (and this is no exaggeration), is this BEAUTIFUL collection of all eight Harry Potter novels. Just look at the detail, the colour, the illustrations. Are you already falling in love?
I have another confession to make: I didn’t read these until I was eighteen years old. I know, ridiculous right? I had watched and enjoyed the films, but for some reason, never made time for the novels, and when anyone asked for my thoughts, or asked why I hadn’t read them, I would just shrug, and say that I didn’t want to.
The truth is that I have no idea why I didn’t read these sooner, because, as you most likely already know, they are wonderful. Rowling’s storytelling ability is second to none, and there are so many benefits to reading the novels like developed plot points (a detailed backstory for Petunia), reasons to dislike characters whose loyalty you do not question in the films (I’m looking at you Dumbledore), and reasons to adore characters the films sometimes chastise (I love you, Neville Longbottom).
I’m so glad that I read these books, and it’s unlikely that I’ll need to encourage anyone to read them, but definitely do if you haven’t already.
And that’s all the series and collections that I own!
I hope you enjoyed having a peek at the kinds of books that I collect and enjoy – let me know if you’d like to see something like this, but maybe with the TV/Film series that I own instead.
Thank you for reading!